Wednesday, November 30, 2011

A Star for a Friend

Back in June, an angel in blog-land sent me a very special package that has allowed me to continue with Barbara Brackman's Civil War Block of the Week project without purchasing fabrics, enabling me to use only stash and her generous gifts.  Each and every "angel" fabric incorporated into blocks reminded me of her kind thoughtfulness... and I consider this quilt a joint project.

Since I need five extra blocks to complete the 7x8 block grid, I wanted to have one specially for my angel.  I found a pattern for Friend's Star online and, since it was a 12" block, I did a little figuring and made this one.

I think the block is almost as beautiful as my blog-land angel!

Monday, November 28, 2011

All Together Now: Civil War Blocks So Far

After the last of the company left, I pinned up all the Civil War blocks on my make-do design wall.  Pinning is necessary b/c the act of putting up one block is guaranteed to knock off another, which in turns brings down at least another block.

The blocks may or may not be in their final arrangement but I can now see what colors I need more of and whether or not a block needs to be light or dark overall.

I've decided on an 7-block by 8-block grid, so I'll have to select several of my favorites of which to make extras.

I will be using this print for the border...  and will need to figure out fabric for the sashing.  I'm currently thinking of a small cream or tan print like this one:

Ideas/suggestions welcome...

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Civil War Block 48: West Virginia

This week's block is #48 of 53... so only five more to go!  I'd been saving a good size fabric remnant to use and thought this week's block would be perfect....     *bzzzzz*

It was too narrow!   I love this flower and decided to piece it to make it large enough...

After I was finished, I realized I could have "framed" the center block so it would look less pieced...  but I am not taking it apart!   Y-seams are not easy, imho!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

My First Quilt

Bonnie Hunter of Quiltville is having a "Share your first quilt!" linky party!

The first quit I made was for my niece Deborah when she graduated from college.  I selected a free online pattern Fine-Toothed Comb... which was guaranteed to be for "absolute beginners."

Depending on online tutorials for use of a rotary cutter, a cutting mat, and an acrylic ruler, I was able to get the top sewn together one morning.

Pin basting and quilting took a couple of days...

...and I was finished in a little over a week (May 3rd 2009).

Fortunately, I did not have to learn to sew and/or operate a sewing machine as I've been dressmaking for more years than I can remember!  Two-and-a-half years later.... I am well and truly addicted!

Be sure to visit Bonnie's "Share your first quilt" linky party and check out all the great "first quilts"!!!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

A Thanksgiving Tradition

When I was growing up, my mother put two sets of turkey salt and pepper shakers on the Thanksgiving dinner table...  and I continue the tradition.

I think of Mom when I pull these out and remember all the wonderful Thanksgivings of years past.

The turkeys are ceramic and had corks in the bottom to keep the salt and pepper in.  Each year, there were discussions about which went where.... pepper in the tom and salt in the hen?  Or vice versa?

Two of the corks have gotten pushed inside the birds and two have disappeared over the years.... and I no longer use them as salt and pepper shakers....  just for decoration.

The grandchildren are as enthralled with the turkeys as I was a child and I let them play with them on the table.   I don't let them wander around with them because they are good at putting things in odd places and then can't remember where they are.  You'd be surprised where I've found things months later!

It's about time to get Mr. Turkey into the oven and otherwise prepare the feast.   I hope your Thanksgiving is a warm and happy time!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

I have so much to be thankful for in life...'s hard to make a list!   I am grateful for all the wonderful people in my life and all the many blessings I have been given.

As always, I am particularly thankful to be able to spend time with my family over the Thanksgiving holiday...    I'm also grateful for my friends who, along with my family, make life worthwhile!

And so, to all my family and friends...

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Tasseled Scarf Finish

It's nice to have another sewing/needlework project crossed off the "to do" list...

The scarf itself is approximately 42" long and 52-53" long with the tassels.  Width is about 8.5".

The scarf is large enough for an adult to wear but not super long.... however, for Henry, it's definitely going to be plenty big for him!

The pattern is simple and I would certainly make another scarf like this.  

Yarn is Bernat "Satin" in crimson and I used almost two 100g/3.5oz balls.

Monday, November 21, 2011

A Little Holiday Sewing

Took a little time yesterday to make a gift for a dear friend who quilts...   yes, another of the little simple sewing companions!

It was fun selecting fabric and a button...

...and I even got into my bead supplies to make a scissors fob!

All in all a fun way to spend an hour...

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Civil War Block 47: Dixie Tea

This week's block reminds us of the food shortages experienced during the Civil War and how folks tried substitutes for coffee and tea... sassafras tea!

  Sassafras Leaves


Saturday, November 19, 2011

A Successful FNSI

Yesterday, I finished sewing down the binding on a throw quilt for my niece...

...not a Christmas present but a belated college graduation gift...  that I want to give her over the holidays.

I also did some more knitting on the crimson scarf for my grandson.

This is one skein... not sure how long I want to make it yet...

...but I need to factor in the fringe... no... the tassels!   *lol*   I would like the scarf to be more an adult size... and hope it lasts for a while...

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Friday Night Sew In (FSNI)

The monthly FSNI snuck up on everyone this month... 

...but that hasn't stopped over 100 folks from signing up already!   Me included!   I have plenty of projects that need working on before the holidays...   

Never too late to sign up and join in the fun...  and then cruise sites the next couple of days to see what everyone is working on!  Inspiration galore...

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Quilter's ADHD Redux

I'm so easily distracted... especially by the beautiful work of others!  This time it was Rachel of Rachel's Quilts who is knitting a scarf for a Christmas present.  Sound familiar?

Rachel's scarf is exactly like the one I'm doing but she has 4 rows of garter stitch every 10 stockinette rows.

Photo blatantly ripped off from Rachel's Quilts

I like the horizontal ribbing effect... adds a very nice pattern to an otherwise plain scarf.  While Rachel is using a lovely variegated yarn, the solid red of the scarf I was working on seemed to cry out for some texture!

So... what do I do?  Yes... I ripped out every last stitch and started over. 

I do like the horizontal ribbing on the red... even though I have to count rows now and keep up with whether I'm knitting a row or purling...  a challenge is good for one!

I hope to get caught up with all the yarn I ripped out last night and... since the cold bug that has caught everyone else seemingly has caught me... I'm going to be spending some time on the sofa today under the quilt seen in the above photo (which needs the rest of the binding sewn down) knitting/purling away.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Super Grandma

My youngest grandson frequently states that "Grandma can make anything!"  While it's nice to know he thinks so highly of me... it does pile on the pressure.

Of the three boys, Henry is definitely the most concerned with what he wears...  I wish I could find the photo of him with the bow tie!

For Christmas, Henry would like a green crew neck sweater ( and specifically asked that Grandma knit him a red scarf with "tassels"....  not "fringe"... "tassels!"

So... I stopped by a craft store and picked up some red yarn and have started work on this red scarf that is to have tassels.

I haven't knit anything in 20 years but it's slowly coming back to me.... and I'm making it up as I go because, don't you know, I'm...

Monday, November 14, 2011

Cowabunga Florabunda: Finished!

Washed and crinkly and soft...

...Cowabunga Florabunda is finished...

...and ready to be wrapped up and put under the tree!  (Not that I have my tree up or anything... but one present is ready!)

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

To Donna Becker, a "no-reply-commenter"...  I edit photos in PhotoBucket, which has an option to add text to photos.

I assume that Picassa also has a way to add text to your photos.

If you'd like more details, please contact me and include your email address.  Thanks!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Saturday, November 12, 2011


Yesterday morning, I finished Cowabunga Florabunda and popped it into the wash... it's now line-drying.  Wonder how long it will take to dry completely?

After cleaning and oiling my machine, I started quilting Smoky Mtn Stars yesterday afternoon...

...the plan is to finish quilting by next weekend!  Any bets?

Friday, November 11, 2011

Veterans Day

Veterans Day, formerly Armistice Day, is an annual US holiday honoring military veterans.  

A federal holiday that is observed on November 11th, Veterans Day coincides with other holidays such as Armistice Day or Remembrance Day, which are celebrated in other parts of the world and also mark the anniversary of the signing of the Armistice that ended World War I.