Wednesday, November 19, 2014


Happy Wednesday!

I changed the quilt in my sewing room to "Friends and Neighbors" 2004.

This was exchange with my Illinois friend, Mary Pat W when I moved to NJ. Some of the liberated houses are mine and some are hers.  I still love this quit and remember it being very fun to make.

The back is all household related print fabrics.

I'm finally marking my big star quilt.  Great News!!  I'm having 2 versions of my over sized baptist fan stencil manufactured and I'll be offering it here on the blog for purchase.  They are also manufacturing another one of my designs for their catalog. (my room is a mess - again)  At least the dolls are behaving.

On other domestic fronts:

I turned these

Into this

a Food and Wine recipe for Tortilla soup.  click here for the link.

I did a little "fake baking".  I added vanilla and some oatmeal and viola'

I inherited Jill's extensive collection of doilies, aren't these pretty?  Warm fake bake is better than no cookies, right?

The hummingbirds area gone, but the winter birds are here at the kitchen window.

This year I moved the whole feeding station up to the deck where I can see them.

I don't know if this is a red-headed sparrow or a purple finch, but he's handsome.

First cardinal of the season.  He's a handsome fellow too!

I've planted an amaryllis and paper whites.

I'm uploading lots of reading for my ipod.

I finished my first block of the Alice Payne quilt.

I found my name tag collection.  I'm off to my second meeting with my new guild tonight.

If I'm not back, have a Blessed Thanksgiving next week to my US friends.  Hope you are staying warm and find time to stitch, read, bake, cook or watch the birds.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Hello Dolly!

Thank you all so much for you wonderfully kind comments about my Jubilee quilt.  It was amazing to hear from so many readers.  Thank You!  unfortunately I had several "non-reply" comments, so I couldn't thank you directly.  Just know that I really appreciated it.  Here a link from my friend, Lori of Humble Quilts, on how not to be a non-reply commenter.

Hooray!  I have finished my repro swap nine patch top.  I measures about 52 x 72 and contains exactly 100 nine patches.

I have received two lovely dolly quilts from readers and wanted to share them. I am always so surprised and delighted when a reader is so generous!

First this came from Rondi, who was in the nine patch swap.  I love the red binding.
She hand quilted it from the back using the fabric as the pattern - great idea!

I received this one from Barbara, a guild friend and blogger from NJ.  Click here for her blog of wonderful quilts and interesting history.  The floral border and pinking top binding are great antique touches.
 Lovely backing fabrics and this one is also hand quilted!

Thank you both so much.  I'll treasure these doll quilts.  They even inspired me to have a dolly tea party.

My doll, Annie, invited Hanna's doll (from the basement) to a tea party and quilt show and tell.  First she showed her Barbara's wonderful quilt.

After lunch, she showed her Rondi's lovely quilt.  (She must live in a studio, given the proximity of the bed to the table).

Then I heard them discussing how I am currently storing the doll quilts.   "Now that is just sad!"...  "A two foot pile in the corner of a closet"..."what a shame."  

In the late afternoon, they had a little "nip" and talked about all matter of things.

It might have gotten a little crazy.......oh dear.

Stay warm!  Looks like most of us are in for cold weather and even snow!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Jubilation at LONG Last!

It is finally here!  After 2 years and 10 months, I have FINISHED my Jubilee Quilt, which celebrated my 50th Birthday, June 2, 2012.

It measures 77" square and I used wool batting.  It has 339 stuffed berries.

Here is where the story started in January 2012.

My dear and late friend, Jill Reid, gave me the red print reproduction fabric for this special project.  She also provided a lot of encouragement during the applique' and early quilting process.  I so wish she was here to celebrate the completion with me.

Here are some close ups:

As you may remember, I started with one muslin ran out, ordered the same muslin, but of course it was slightly different.  That's okay, I think it adds to the "instant antique" look of this quilt.

Thank you for sweet comments about my poor coco.  She has been to vet again twice.  Once for an infection on Saturday and then today.  A few hours after this was taken, her wound opened up and they put her on another week of antibiotics. I will spare you the photo until it is healed.  It will heal with a 1/2 split :(
What a good helper.

Even though I am a little tired of seeing this quilt, I hung it in the dining area to appreciate it's doneness.

If you know me, and lot of you know how I like to celebrate life's milestones.  I have only 20 minutes to wait for 5pm.

While most of the work on this quilt was done alone at home, I am so grateful to my family, friends and blog buddies who have supported and encouraged me.

My whole life changed (literally) during the time it took to make this quilt.  Some of it joyous, some of it sorrowful as life will be.....

I'm grateful for it all.

Friday, October 31, 2014

Happy Halloween - treats and a scare!

I just made one of my seasonal favorites; rice krispie treats.  So simple, yet classic and elegant.  Speaking of classics, I listened to Bram Stoker's Dracula.  Slow, but good.

My buddy Norma made the ceramic pumpkin and also sent me the napkins.  Thanks Norma!

This is a great time of year to make Apple Crisp.  I found an easy recipe here.  I used 4 different apples and it was delicious.

Now the scary part....coco had a close encounter with another dog at dog day camp on Wednesday.  We were straight off to the vet with a torn ear.  Poor thing.  They glued it and taped it.  We wrapped her head to prevent ear shaking and flapping.

Doesn't she look sad?  She's on the drugs.  They gave her a tranquilizer.

Yesterday she was still zonked out.  Here she is keeping it elevated, lol.

Today, I'm happy to report she is back to her old self.  We took a walk through town.  She was wearing her Halloween halo.

Our town has a scarecrow event every year.  This was my favorite today:

I didn't dress up this year, but I did make funny cartoons of me and Rich.

If you want to waste a little time and have a little fun you can make your own here.

Happy Halloween!  See you next week with a long awaited finished project.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Playing House with Alice Payne

On Thursday I had carpeting installed in 3 bedrooms.  While they were throwing old carpeting and padding out the window, and booming there way through the installation, I kept busy with my new applique' project.

I've decided to make 9 blocks from my antique quilt.  This quilt was made by Alice Payne and dated 1858.   See the original post here.

So here is the original quilt:

My Illinois quilt group replicated this quilt and Jan sent me a set of tracings from their project.  I'll try to get a photo of the finished quilt they made.  

Here are the first 3 blocks~

I took quite a few liberties with this block~

I also recut the shapes for this block

It is so fun to have a new applique' project!

Here is my sewing room in its current state.  The mint green carpeting is gone, but now can't see the carpeting!  I know what I'll be doing tomorrow.

A Cat's Tail (tale) - for Hanna who misses the cats while away at school.

The other day in the kitchen I noticed that Starbuck was down stairs - what?  Since we got coco, 4 1/2 years ago, the cats usually stay upstairs.

Next thing I know, Luna comes to the kitchen.  It's a beautiful day, so I open the door to the deck.  They used to like to go out on the balcony outside my old sewing room.  Before coco, they used to like to hang out in our yard.

So here they sit, contemplating their past life outside.

"What's out there?"  "I dunno"  "Should we see?"

Starbuck, being the man decides to take the lead.

"I'm the leader, I say when we go.......let's go" (favorite movie line from Aristocats).

"Let's go by the grill"

"yea, the grill...."

After several minutes of checking things out.  Here they come, back to the comforts of home.

Wait for me!

Remember when we were actually outside.....yea, we'll have to try that again some time.

I hope you have a great week and a better cleaner sewing room than mine!