Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Tuesday Tips

I recently had a quilt come in that did not want to play nice.  What I mean by that is the borders were wavy due to the amount of bulk in the center.  I used a technique explained on Kelly Cline's website in a tutorial.  When I worked on the quilt I used Best Press because its what I had on hand.  On the next trip to Wal Mart, or as my husband calls it "Terry's World", I purchased the spray starch Kelly Cline recommended.  I love it!

When I am stressed out or frustrated with a quilt, I take a break and go piece a quilt.  I tried the spray starch on those tough fold marks in the fabric, left it set for a minute or two to soak in, and then pressed.  Beautiful pressing without any fold marks and no flaking as you will get with many starches.  (Now a word of warning - if you are working on a quilt that may never be washed and maybe stored, starch can draw small bugs that can damage your quilt. It is a small risk but one you need to be made aware.) 

Have a great day!

Yours in quilting,

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Work in Progress Wednesday & Trip Pictures

Today I feel like I have played shuffle the deck with things around the house.  I am moving stuff out of the way of the electrician and putting back things we had moved in anticipation of work by the contractor.  The electrical contractor is here today installing new lights and new circuits.  WooHoo! for new lighting on the outside of the house.  We have always had yellow glass in our lights which gives off a haunting glow.  Now we will have LED lighting and bright, so beware burglars.  When you lived in house for many years (26+) there comes a time when updating is a necessity.  It has been a long drawn out process over the last year and a half.  I will post pictures in the future.
We have just returned from a vacation in Washington DC and the contractors have returned to finish the work in our house. On our second day of our bus trip, we visited Gettysburg.  This view is from Round Top looking over the battlefields.
The South Carolina memorial. 
Rod at the Mississipi Memorial. 
Inside the museum is the Cyclorama.  This is an oil painting in-the-round. 
Another view in the Cyclorama.
We had been to Gettysburg before, about 15 years ago with our son.  They have built a new museum and visitors center along with the Cyclorama.  Its a beautiful place to visit.  We also ate dinner at the Dobbin House Tavern.  The Dobbin House was also part of the underground railroad for slaves.  They hid the slaves between the floors during the day.  The slaves came out and traveled by night.
They took us upstairs to eat.  It was tight quarters up there but the food was good.  Below is our beautiful candlelit dinner table with Joe and Kathy Olson.  We also enjoyed meeting many other couples on our bus, plus finding out we knew many other people in common.  It's a small world. 
Have a great day!  The sun is shining and its starting to warm up.  This weather is much nicer than what we dealt with last week. 
Yours in quilting,

Friday, March 25, 2016

Friday Finishes - Good Friday

It has been sometime since I have posted and shared my quilting with you.  I am happy to say I have quite a bit to share today. Get your favorite cup of coffee, tea or a healthy smoothie, and settle down for a good read and pictures.
 I have been working on a quilt for over three (3) years for my best friend, Kelly.  The day we picked out the fabric and gave birth to this quilt was quite an adventure.  You may read the story:  http://quiltcrazie.blogspot.com/2012/10/sheep-shuffle-surprise.html.
Last Sunday, Kelly and her husband, Mike, took time off from the fiber farm to drive down for a visit.  We spent some time catching up on each others' lives.  Kelly and Mike own OK Acres farm where they raise Shetland sheep, chickens, horses, 1 alpaca, 2 lamas, 2 angora bunnies and multiple dogs.  They have guardian dogs that live with the sheep and house dogs that are their pets. Oh, let's not forget the two cats!  Before arriving Sunday, their son had been over to help install cameras in the barn to help with lambing season.  Now they will be check on the ewes from work, from bed in the middle of the night and from the house, without trekking down to the barn.  Kelly and Mike will be snuggling under the new quilt this Spring.  The outer border below is quilted with swags and piano keys quilting, along with the second border quilted with clam shells with curls (Handi Quilter patterns).  I used navy and off-white Magnifico threads.  The center of the quilt is quilted with Counting Sheep E2E by Three Sisters. 
Below is view of a corner.  I cropped the center pattern down to one sheep and stitched it in each corner square. 
I was never so glad to finish a quilt top.  I had taken so long to finish the quilt there was a danger I wouldn't be able to get additional fabric, if needed.  I would have been short of the outer border fabric but I took creative license and added corner stones to the border.  I am very pleased with the overall finished product. 
I also made a label telling the story. 
There once was a girl who raised sheep. She said let's go on a road trip, beep, beep!
So, we loaded up Pearl Jam, the ram lamb and sped down the highway towards Beaver Dam. After the sheep shuffle, we bought a few hens with money to spare. So we stopped at the quilt shop where the fabric we did find. In twenty minutes flat - a pattern and fine fabric were all in our bag. As we dashed home from Sun Prairie with a coo from the hens, I promised a beautiful quilt I would make. But, we won't discuss how much time it did take.

May you enjoy your quilt for many years to come. The pattern is Cabin Fever by Bonnie Sullivan.
The quilt was pieced and quilted by Terry Johnson, Quilt Crazie, Princeton, IL. March 2, 2016
Please label your quilts and have as many appraised as you can.  Add them to your home owner's insurance. 
Tuesday morning I was so happy to meet Gudrun Erla of G.E. Quilt Designs.  She was the guest speaker at Quilter's Garden in Princeton.  There were 85 quilters gathered to hear Gudrun's story of her quilting journey.  She has developed the Stripology Ruler with Creative Grids and has authored many books and single patterns. You can visit her through her blog at Gudrun.typepad.com or on Facebook join her group Gudrun's Quilt Crew.  I joined her Crew a few months ago and recently made her free pattern, Come Together.
Gudrun's patterns are well written and easy to follow. 
 I am happy to say I made this top all on my featherweight. 
It is quilted with butterflies and backed with minky.  
Pattern is Handi Quilter Flutterbys and thread is Omni Banana.
This quilt was a collaborative effort with my friend, Kathy Olson.  Last June, we traveled to Shipshewana for the quilt show and shop hop.  Thanks to Kathy Allen, who is very familiar with the area, she made the hotel arrangements and drove us to all the events.  Kathy Olson and bought this panel (the center) at Yoders Department Store.  We planned to make Kathy Allen a quilt for taking us on the trip, as she is not a quilter.    Kathy O and I drew our inspiration from the panel and repeated the blocks in the panel in the borders.  It was exciting to find fabrics that matched the panel colors so easily.  We worked on the project at a January retreat and what we didn't finish at the retreat, we took turns working on the project at home.  Each of us made blocks and borders. 
It is quilted with Maple Omini thread and the pattern is Gingersnap by Apricot Moon. The barn blocks are a pattern by Lori Holt, Bee in My Bonnet.
Here is the story on the label.
To the bestest quilt shop hop chauffer.
Thank you for the trip to the Shipshewana area,
Shop Hop, Antique Shops, and Quilt Show in June 2015.
This quilt was designed, pieced and quilted
especially for you by Kathy Olson (Wyanet, IL)
and Terry Johnson (Princeton, IL).
Thanks for the memories!
The quilt below is one of my customer's quilts.  She recently finished this fabulous UFO.  Its a Nancy Halvorsen design, Beatitudes. 
Great applique.  She will be adding the decorative buttons to finish it!
Have blessed Easter weekend.
Yours in quilting,

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Working on Wednesday

This past weekend, my friend Cathy K, gave a class on how to clean and maintain your Featherweight sewing machine.  There were four students in the class and it was very informative as well as hands-on learning.
Our teacher was "Little Cathy" in the black top on the right side of the above picture.  I am the one with the olive colored shirt. Notice in the background that all the walls are carpeted.  Every wall is a design wall. 
Below we are learning to use Singer lubricant on the gears.  Little Cathy was great about going around and working individually with each of us.
Below, I went home and set-up my Featherweight table and worked on a quilt while watching The Bachelor Monday night.  It was really cold here and I didn't feel like going to the basement.
Hope you had a good day and got a little sewing in.
Yours in quilting,

Tuesday Tip

As I was surfing through a few blogs, I found this wonderful tip on how to easily add embroidery embellishments to your quilt projects whether they are cotton or wool using press and seal.

Happy Tuesday!  Today I will be linking up with Connie at Freemotion by the River.

Yours in quilting,

Monday, February 8, 2016

Monday Design Wall

Baby, its cold outside!  The wind is blowing about 25 miles an hour with light fluffy snow and about 25 degrees outside.  We are tucked inside for the day.  First, I had some very ripe bananas that I needed to make into banana  bread. Done!

Second, my husband starts his two weeks of night shift tonight.  (He got called off for last night and we watched the Super Bowl.)  The guys on his shift like treats so before Christmas I sent my husband's favorite bar cookie, butter chewies.  The guys loved them.  So I wanted to send a treat with him tonight and had all the ingredients for butter chewies on hand.  They make the house smell so good.

This weekend I was able to spend a day and a half at a small quilt retreat at our church.
This is a picture of part of the group of ladies who attended.

We had a little show and tell by Cathy, see her peeking out from behind the top.  She will be quilting this quilt for a friend.
Sylvia made this on Saturday and I brought it home to quilt for her mother-in-law. 
Corry has been on a mission to finish UFOs.  This windmill quilt is full of signatures and she figures she started it around 2009.  It is king size and now ready to be quilted! 
She also brought this Thimbleberries quilt and found out the top was finished.  So she pieced the backing out of the leftover fabrics.
Last, but not least is my project.  This is a panel from our trip to Shipshewana, IN this past summer. My friend, Kathy O and I are planning this quilt and working on the design and blocks together.
I apologize for the quality of the picture (its a picture of a picture) as didn't take a picture before packing up to go home.  I received the picture from Cathy K.
This quilt will be lap size when we are finished.
Thank you to Corry for all the planning and thank you for all the fun "quilty sisters".
Now that I am finished with writing the blog, the sun is shining!  What's on your design wall?
Yours in quilting,

Friday, February 5, 2016

Friday Finishes

Both quilts that I finished this week belong to the same customer.  She is a fairly new quilter but she has taken the time to learn her craft and does a great job at piecing.  The first quilt is an Edyta Sita pattern, Cabbage Rose Tablerunner, from the book Friendship Triangles.
I used Glide threads and patterns from the Handi Quilter Pro Stitcher library. 
I am ready for Spring and this tulip table topper was a bright spot in my week. 
I also finishes a group of skinny pin cushions.  I like to give these as gifts or giveaway during lectures.  I have a few 1/4" rulers and quilting guides with the pin cushions.  This allows you to set up that perfect 1/4" or scant 1/4" seam allowance.
  Below is a picture on how you set it up.

Headed out the door to a small retreat for today and tomorrow. Have a great weekend!
Yours in quilting,