Sunday, April 28, 2013

April Project Round-up

Hello to all of my blog readers! Sorry I haven't posted much. April has been a really busy month for me. First, my husband Mike and I went to New Orleans for the French Quarter Festival on vacation for five days. We got home the same day as the Boston Marathon tragedy. Then I went up to Maine to QuiltPort USA for a 3-day quilt weekend retreat. And when I got back from Maine I had to go to Pittsburgh for two days for work. So there are two half empty suitcases in my bedroom  and a lot of catching up to do. I will definitely share some photos from New Orleans and Maine with you!

Project Total for 2013 To-date
So far this year I have completed 30 projects: four quilts (one bed size, one wall hanging and two table runners) and 26 small sewn gifts that range from pillowcases to baby blankets to bibs, etc. I have two large bed-size quilts that just need to be bound, one of which is Anna's wedding gift (she'll celebrate her one year anniversary on May 5th, so I'm not too late yet). I'm also ready to layer and quilt Anna's baby quilt for her first baby which is due at the end of July.

Small Finishes in April
I finished this baby quilt which is for sale in our Etsy Shop that I run with my friend Marion. I think I bought this as a kit back in 1995, and there is unfortunately enough fabric left to make a second one! Originally I had planned to do some machine embroidery in the circles, but never got around to it.
I also put the binding on this cute little cheater cloth panel quilt for my friend Mary Kate. This will be a belated birthday gift. Normally I wouldn't give a panel quilt as a gift, but my friend picked it out from the eQuilter website and said it was just what she wanted. She will probably hang it in her Teddy Bear room (she collects teddy bears). My friend Kim P quilted it for me.

I did make a quilt for the back of the Teddy Bear quilt out of my stash box of beige fabrics (sadly it didn't make a dent). So at least there was some quilting involved.

I also whipped up a flannel blanket for Anna that I was going to send by overnight mail for her baby shower until I figured out it was going to cost $32. So it will go in the box with the soon-to-be finished wedding quilt and baby quilt.
Anna is doing an ocean theme for her baby's room.
She is expecting a boy.
This weekend has flown by. I spent Friday evening unexpectedly in Pittsburgh since my flight had a two-hour delay. I got home, kissed Mike and the pugs and went to bed. On Saturday, Mike and I did some work in the yard because it was a beautiful sunny day. I planted some of the pansies that I bought several weeks ago and we brought out all of our outdoor furniture and our grill.  We went out for sushi and saw the movie "42" about baseball player Jackie Robinson. It was very good.

Today, Marion and I spent several hours working on a custom t-shirt quilt commission that has to be ready for the end of May. We have half of the quilt top sewn together. It looks really nice, but it has been A LOT of work.

Hope you are having a great day!

Pugs and kisses,

Sunday, April 7, 2013

A Shout out to my Thursday Pals

I'm truly fortunate to have so many wonderful friends to quilt with. I have been getting together with my Thursday night friends for at least six years and they have been sorely under-represented in my blog. They are a little bit camera-shy, but here are a few pictures from last week. They are a talented bunch!
Here is my friend Nancy. She is making a diaper bag.

By the end of the night she had decided to mix up her pink
fabrics and add the frogs. It's going to be very cute.
Here is my friend Beth

She is working on this adorable dog wall hanging.
Here is my friend Judi. She got a new sewing machine for the holidays!
Now she really likes to sew.

This is Judi's quilt with lovely fall colors. Just needs to be trimmed and bound.
Judi will be ready for next Fall ahead of schedule!
My clever friend Karen was making curtains out of a tablecloth.

Here is my friend Ginny layering her lovely baby quilt. She needed to finish it this weekend!
My friend Toni was making a set of cosmetic bags.
Here is my friend Pat. You've seen her many times before.

Pat made this quilt and the one above from the same bundle of fabrics.
Aren't they fun? She is giving the zig zag quilt to her adorable grandson Matthew.

Pat's Easter bunnies look like solid milk chocolate to me!
I leave you all with a case of serious fish quilt envy. This is Nancy's quilt for her adorable grandson Ethan.
He must have at least two dozen quilts by now. I like Nancy's quilt much better than the one
that I am making for Anna. Bummer. At least Anna doesn't read my blog, so she'll never know.
Have a good night.

Pugs and kisses,

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Waiting for Spring

Although it is April 6th, here in Massachusetts we are still waiting for Spring to arrive. I did see a robin and a blue jay the other day, so hopefully Spring will be here soon.

Last Sunday I bought pansies at Home Depot. I bought some of every color that they had. The purple and yellow ones are probably my favorites.
I'm afraid to plant them outside since everyone says that it is still too cold, so they are living inside my dining room for now. I think that I will take them outdoors this afternoon for some fresh air and a big drink of water.

I made these embroidered floral blocks in 2007 in a class at Ann's Fabrics. I only finished five. They were supposed to be part of a much larger quilt, although now I am thinking of making a wall hanging with them.

They are very cheerful. I like the white flower block (narcissus?) but it doesn't look like it shows up very well against the background fabric, so maybe it shouldn't go in the quilt. What do you think?

On a positive note, my crocus have come up! Can anyone tell me why, after I have rotated this photo in iPhoto so that it is the correct orientation (horizontal), it still shows up as vertical when I try to import it in my blog? Do I need to make a duplicate image first, then rotate?

Enjoy your weekend!

Pugs and kisses,

Friday, April 5, 2013

Happy Birthday Joannie!

Happy Birthday to my good friend Joannie! My friend Joannie is a good sport, generous to a fault, and always up for an adventure. My pugs adore her because she brings lots of dog treats and gives good belly rubs.

Joannie and I met about six years ago at Curves (a womens' gym). Since then, we've taken aerobics together, tried a sock knitting class, as well as attending personal training gym. I've attempted walking in the mornings with Joannie, but she is much faster than I am. Joannie has earned my undying devotion for helping me dispose of a dead squirrel.

About two winters ago, Joannie asked me to help her learn to quilt.

Have I created a monster or what? After a quick Yellow Brick Road, Joannie's love of quilting took off like a rocket ship. Since then, Joannie has made dozens of quilts, hundreds of place mats and is turning into a mad machine quilter. She is much more adventuresome than I am and is afraid of no pattern. She made me a double wedding ring quilt when I got married last year and has done lots of other curved piecing as well. She graces the pages of my blog quite often.
Always willing to try something new! At our Machine Embroidery weekend.
Always ready to come over and play with me in The Studio!
Always willing to go on a road trip!
Or a quilt lecture
Or another road trip! And Joannie loves to drive!

Not afraid to do silly things for my blog or model for my Etsy Shop.

Have a great birthday Joannie! I am eating a Cadbury Egg in your honor!

Pugs and kisses,