Kaleidoscope and Pincushion

This little block took awhile to piece, but I love how it turned out! It’s F2-Kaleidoscope for my Dear Jane quilt. It looks a little puckery here, but that’s only because of the way the scanner squished it to take its picture. It turned out so nice and flat.

Do these colors look familiar? They are left over from my Paper Lanterns quilt. I offered a giveaway after posting hints about the quilt, and JoAnne won this little pincushion.
I am amazed by the quilts produced by Diana of Diana’s Art Quilts. Visit her Etsy shop by clicking on the link, and then see her slide show here.

You should recognize this man… I just know you’ve seen him before!!! Can you believe this is a QUILT? She is also a member of the DESIGN STYLE GUIDE – INTERIOR DESIGN ETSY TEAM that I also belong to. Please check it out.

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Fall Colors are Beginning in Michigan

My favorite season is fall. I love the temperature, with the cool nights and fair days. I like the smell of the falling leaves, the colors in the trees and bushes, and the crispness of each step. I don’t think I would be happy living in a place that didn’t have a true fall.

I’m drawn to muted tones, and you will rarely see me make a quilt with a white or muslin background. I adore textures, and the one here is one of my favorites, called “Fossil Fern.” The burgandy colors in the flowers are similar to the color of the bushes that are in front of my house… deep, rich and yummy. This is the last little ten inch block for my sampler quilt. On to the border!
Hope you have a colorful, crisp and crunchy weekend!

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One UFO at a Time

A few months ago, I made of list of my UFO’s that I wanted to finish. Oh, I have more, but the list only contained the ones I wanted to complete. I must say, it’s been fun being able to cross them off the list!!! This block, and the others I am finishing, measure 10 inches square when finished. They are from a block of the month I was following last year on the Quilting Arts Forum. The BOM was for all pieced blocks, but I love applique mixed in with piecing. It seems to give it a more graceful touch (at least in my mind). One more block to finish, and then I can put the top together. I think I will hand quilt this one. It’s not a large quilt… more like a wallhanging. I miss hand quilting!
I spotted this little sweetie on Etsy this morning. Aren’t the colors yummy? It’s called “Starfish,” and is a Fine Art Print on Watercolor. The description by the creator is:” A beautiful 8″ x 10″ archival print on 10″ x 12″ Somerset Velvet watercolor paper. Fits any standard 11″ x 14″ mat and frame (not included).” You can see or buy this and many other great items at http://www.paperartstudios.etsy.com/ . As a quilter, I am drawn to great colors. PaperArtStudios has some of the best colors blended together I have seen in a long time. Please do check it out!!!

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Dear Jane Progress Report

A quick report on my Dear Jane progress. I’ve slowed down to focus on Jake’s quilt, but have tried to do a few blocks each week. Today, I did the block to the left, called “E-12 Mary Ruth’s Corset.” Fairly easy paper piece, but in thinking ahead, I wish the quilt fairies would come over some night and pick the paper pieces out of my finished blocks soon!

Below is a peek at the quilt thus far. I’m planning on putting cornerstones between the blocks in the sashing, probably in a deep maroon color.

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An Owl and a Snowflake Melt… in September!

I haven’t worked much over the last two weeks on anything but Jake’s Ninja Turtle Quilt. I’m trying to get that done by the end of this coming weekend. I think I just might make it!!! I’m past the half-way point of machine quilting it.

Last week, I missed making the Dear Jane “Block of the Week” for the first time. I wrestled with myself Sunday night to sew it, but after painting at Sean and Kim’s house most of the day, I was plumb tuckered out. I’m the kind of person who sets goals and stresses myself out over them. I have to keep telling myself that my life doesn’t depend on getting things done in MY OWN set deadlines. But now I’m dealing with the guilt from missing a week. I know, I need serious help!!!

But, today is only Wednesday, and see – I got this week’s BOW completed! I had a fun, relaxing evening last night hand piecing this block, H-9 Snowflake Melt. Come pat me on the back!

I finished this little redwork owl recently for my owl quilt. No self-imposed deadlines on this. Just little stitchery blocks to fiddle with when I want something relaxing to sew on. I love owls!

No work tomorrow, as I travel to Houghton Lake for a funeral. So sad to be only 27 and suffer so. God bless you, Ryan Earegood. You were a good man, and will be sadly missed by many.

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Hey Dad, Look!

“Hey Dad, look out the window!”

“What, Stormie!”
“Look Dad, the baby deer are back with their mommy! Get the camera!”

“Take my picture with the deer, Dad!”

“Stormie, I can’t take your picture with the deer. They are outside, you are in.”

“But Dad, Mom always takes my picture WITH the animals that come to visit me!”

“Stormie, if I stop to take your picture, the deer will leave before I get their picture.”

“Dad, you just don’t get it! You can take all of us in one picture! Mom can do it!”

“Stormie, Mom is at work. Now let me take their picture.”

“Okay, but Mom is going to be REALLY mad at you, Dad. I’m supposed to be in every picture with other animals. Bugs, too. It’s MY house!”
“Ahhhh, I see. You own the house?”
“Mom thinks so.”

Thread vs. Gas

I love thread. I love colors. If you’re gonna be a quilter, you need to love both. If you’re gonna be a quilter, you NEED both! The problem comes when you have to decide between buying thread… or buying gas for the car. We all know how the price of gas has skyrocketed over the past few years. So has the cost of thread. Take the pretty green thread on my Pfaff. Ouch! This is the first large cone of thread I have ever purchased. $24.95 for ONE CONE. Ouch! I better be doing lots of quilts that need this thread.
The zippered bag you see in the next photo holds about half of my thread collection. Now, some people might look at this bag and think/say “Wow, that’s a lot of thread!” No, actually, it isn’t. Not when you think of all the possible colors in the world. A painter has the ability to mix colors to achieve the specific hue that is needed. A quilter and fiber artist can’t do that with thread. It is what it is.
For hand sewing, I love Mettler. That’s what you see in this bag. If you know me well, you know I love chocolate. If you are trying to get on my good side and are thinking, “I’ll bet Caron would love a piece of chocolate,” think again. Caron would love another color thread. I’m low on browns. Reds. Pinks. Oranges. Yellows. Oh heck, any color will do just fine, thank you!

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Setting up quilt on Next Generation Frame

This post is for my friends on the Pfaff Hobby Grand Quilter (Yahoo) group who are setting their quilt up for the first time on a Next Generation Frame (or something similar).

Hope this makes sense:

  1. I have my quilt top pinned to the leader on the quilt top rail with straight pins.
  2. I do the same thing with the backing and leader on that rail.
  3. I use the tube and groove to secure my batting in place.
  4. I then pull the backing up over the frame and secure it with pins to the take up rail.
  5. Next, I pull the batting up over the frame and lay it on top of the backing fabric. I make sure it is lined up straight about 1/2 inch down from where the backing and leader are pinned together. I DON’T pin the batting at this point.
  6. The next step is to pull the quilt top over the frame and smooth it over the top of the backing at about 1 inch down from where the batting is. I make sure it is on straight and line everything up square. I use straight pins at about every 3-4 inches perpendicular to the take up rail.
  7. I use my machine to run a line of stitching about 1/4 inch from the top of the quilt. This secures the three layers of the quilt sandwich together. The quick sketch here might help you understand. Click on it to enlarge it.

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Happy Birthday, Dad!

Yesterday my Dad turned 86 years old. Hard to believe…
He’s in great health, very active physically, and has lived by himself since Mom passed away in April of 2007. Dad is spending the warm weathers here in Michigan, and in late October goes to Arizona where my brother is. How much longer he can keep doing that is up to God. I pray it is for many more years.
Happy Birthday, Dad!

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And The Winner Is…

About two and a half years ago, I got an urge to make a quilt in the “Japanese Taupe” style. I collected fabrics myself, and participated in a Birthday FQ Swap on the Delphi Quilting Arts Forum. I ended up with some authentic Japanese fabrics, and some wannabe’s. I filled in with more wannabe’s to come up with enough fabrics to put together this wall quilt called…
Paper Lanterns

I’ve been fascinated by paper lanterns. How do they keep from catching fire? They come in all colors now, but it used to be that I would only see them in white or lighter beige colors. Here are some that I found online… If you click here it will take you to the website of Shoji De’cor where you can find paper lanterns in wide variety of styles and colors.

I had a contest to see if anyone could come up with the theme for my newest quilt. I didn’t give too many clues – hey come on, you have to do SOME work to win a prize! Here’s a photo of the finished quilt top, “Paper Lanterns.” Can you see them? Photo to the left without the outer borders.

The contest winner is JoAnne who said…
“Is it something oriental?” That comes as close as anything! JoAnne, email your mailing address to me and I’ll put your prize in the mail!

I’ll post “Paper Lanterns” again after I have it quilted. Photo right shows the final borders on the finished quilt top.

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