Monday, December 30, 2013

Design Wall - Celtic Solstice Progress

Its Monday!  We have all been so busy with preparing for Christmas and now for New Year's Eve.  Our neighbors are having a the annual New Year's Eve gathering so I only have to make a salad.  My husband loves 24 Hour Salad and that's what I will take.  The reason it is called 24 Hour Salad is it takes 24 hours for the flavors to meld.  I will share the recipe in a future post.

I hope you all enjoyed your Christmas!  Ours was a quiet day at home and you can view it here.
In as much as we are all talented in quilting, creating, and crafting, the best thing I ever made is my son.  I am so thankful he is healed and living a productive life since his car accident two years ago on Christmas Eve.

Since we didn't have a house full of company.  I have been able work on quilting memory quilts and cutting out Celtic Solstice clues.
Here's the Chevron clue cut out and laying in a Sterilite tub.
Even  had to use the calculator to total it up.
Have a few parts sewn.
I may not have all the clues done.  But I have a great amount of PROGRESS!!!
The cutting takes forever, but the sewing seems to be going more quickly.  Sure could use a person to do all the ironing then I know I could go faster.  I am thrilled that I am making better progress in keeping up.  Over the next couple of days should be able to make further progress as it will be quiet around here.
Today I am linking up with Patchwork Times and Quiltville.
Are you working on New Year's Goals?  I am!
Yours in quilting,

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas - The Best I Ever Made

A very Merry Christmas from our family to yours!  We hope you are able to celebrate Jesus' birthday with family and friends.  Or, a quiet day at home to rest up and relax.  Two years ago we were in St. Francis Hospital trauma unit with our son in critical condition.  Today he is thankful to be healed and has few limitations from all his injuries.  The medical bills are finally paid off.  We have truly been blessed.  My son, Aaron, is the best thing I ever made!!
He has a beautiful, supportive girlfriend in his life.  We love her like a daughter.
Dear hubby,  got a nap after helping clean up the house.

Thank you for visiting and/or following my blog this year.  I have linked up with
and  check out Haberdashery Fun, check out her cute mini jewelry roll.

Yours in quilting,

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Tuesday Tip - Do You Pre-Wash Fabrics

I know this is a hot topic with some quilters.  Some quilters are avid at pre-washing fabrics before adding them to their stash or quilts.  I have heard many a conversation about this subject at quilting classes and retreats as well as reading about it.  I believe it is a personal choice for each of us to make.

I have not been a pre-washer.  I will check dark fabrics (reds, purples, hunter green, black) by rubbing them with a white sock or wash clothe, to see if dye rubs off.  Mostly, I believe that using Shout Color Catcher Sheets will alleviate most of you bleeding and color transfer issues.
See the comment on the bottom right hand corner of the box, "The Proof is on the Sheet".  Now look below.

The top sheet is fresh out of the box, un-used.  The second sheet has been used in a load of colored clothes with a few new items I thought might bleed.  It was a good idea that I used the sheet because look at the dye it caught.  The dirty look could have been deposited on the laundry making it look dull and dingy.

When I wash a quilt, unless its a tablerunner, I use a minimum of two Color Catcher sheets.  I truly believe this has saved me many headaches and damage to quilts.  I do this at least the first two times I wash the quilt.  Also, I include two Color Catcher sheets in a ziplock baggy with the care instructions when I sell a quilt or make a custom quilt for a customer.  Hopefully, this will prevent the customer from having any issues with the quilt.  Its part of the process of educating our customers on how to care for their quilt.

I have linked up with Connie at Freemotion by the River and A Quilt Story.

Enjoy Christmas Eve with family and friends. I will be celebrating with our son, his girlfriend and my wonderful husband.  Many blessings to all.

Yours in quilting,

Monday, December 23, 2013

Design Wall

The WIPs (works in progress)overload that I shared last week here are still hanging on the design wall with no progress.  I can't imagine that I am alone with this issue.  I am sure that many of you are busy with family, friends and work, or all of the above during this holiday season.

I spent yesterday in my sewing studio as church was cancelled because of the ice, sleet and snow storm.  We attend a little country church and the secondary roads were slippery.  My holiday job at the mall didn't need me so that left a whole day open.  Whoop, Whoop, I wrapped all the presents and RAN to the sewing studio.  I hibernated the rest of the day there the rest of the day quilting a wall quilt for a customer. 
Also, got all the laundry done.  Running the dryer helps keep the studio warm.
Here is my supervisor for the day, Rascal.  He is 6.5 lbs of Yorkie.  Notice he is laying on some Shannon fabric.  I made 2 - 5 Minute Scarves for gifts.  Really easy.  It took longer to set up the sewing machine for the walking foot and zig zag stitch than it did to sew the one seam.  You can find them at
Hope you are ready, Christmas is just around the corner.  I would like to find some time to catch up with Celtic Solstice.  I haven't finished any clues totally.  I have quite a bit cut out, just not enough time to just sit 'n sew.
Today I have linked up with Judy at Patchwork Times, Sew Can Do and Bonnie at Quiltville.
Yours in quilting,

Friday, December 20, 2013

Friday Finish

So are you ready for Christmas?  I am not.  I got blindsided by my son getting a really bad case of influenza.  I rushed him to Prompt Care with 103.5 fever.  Even though he is an adult now, the mothering instinct kicks in.  He was given Tamaflu (oh boy, is that expensive even with insurance).  He is better but we learned that he is allergic to Tamaflu.  At first, we thought he was allergic to Dayquil but the longer he was on the Tamaflu the worse the rash got.  Gave him Benedryl and he started to get some relief.

Then it was my turn to have a cold or respiratory virus.  Luckily, I have gotten by on Advil Cold and Sinus and Nyquil to sleep. These illnesses have caused a little vacation from blogging.

I still had to get up and at it, each day for my holiday job in the mall.  It has been a blast working at the fast pace of the holidays.  I was hired for the holiday season back in October. Only in the last week, the rush is on and I have been working every day for at least four hours, sometimes more. Then I have been coming home to quilt on memory quilts.
My neighbor is making 8 of these memory quilts: 4 for the grandsons and 4 for the daughters.  The quilts are approximately 52" x 56".  The  center strips are 2 1/2" strips cut from all of Dad or Grandpa's shirts.  The picture above is what the grandson's quilts look like.
I am quilting each with Navy thread by Omni and the quilting pattern is Ocean Froth by Anne  I have two of the four grandson quilts done.
I hope you are enjoying the Christmas season.
Yours in quilting,

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Tuesday Tip - BOM

I have talked about Block of the Month before.  I try to complete the block or blocks as soon as the pattern is released each month.  That way it is done and I don't have to worry about playing catch up.

What I would like to share today is how I store the blocks.  See my "expensive storage system"?  The first three hangers are BOM.  The back hanger with the flying geese is a small quilt awaiting quilting.
I use pant hangers to hold my Block of the Month projects.  Here are my Country Threads blocks.
Here are my blocks for the Legacy Sampler from Quilter's Garden.
Above is a pant hanger with the little metal clips that you pull up, then insert your item between the black tabs, and then push the clips back down into place.   I do NOT recommend this type of hanger.

I do recommend the type that has the spring release clips that you just pinch and insert your item into the clip.  My blocks have been hanging this way throughout the year and do not find that they stretch while hanging.  I am very pleased with the results.  This nice thing about this method is I had these items on hand and I don't have another tub filled with a project I can't see.  When shopping and someone offers me the hangers, I say yes.  This method is budget friendly and leaves more money for fabric, patterns and notions.

Have a terrific Tuesday!  Say a prayer for the folks in Washington effected by the tornado.  There are many families displaced this holiday without a home to celebrate in.  They have received about 6 inches of snow and things are at a standstill.

I have linked up with Connie at Freemotion by the River.

Yours in quilting,

Monday, December 16, 2013

Design Wall Overloaded with WIPs

How many of you are on overload!!  Nine days till Christmas and my Design Wall is on overload. 
I have five of these memory quilts that need to be quilted, three are a must for Christmas.  One got finished last night and at 10pm I ran it across the street to the quiltmaker for the binding.

Above are my December blocks for the Country Thread BOM.  The finishing directions have been posted but there are a lot of filler blocks.  I had hoped after the December blocks it would go together quickly and be an easy finish.  I have the backing ready and pattern picked out for quilting. It will take sometime to complete the HSTs and add the border.  This will probably have to hibernate awhile on the Design Wall.

I mentioned in an earlier blog, looking for an eleven year old (wedding) project.  Found it.  Got one block done.  Many more to complete and they would like to receive it for Christmas.  (I am not going to make that deadline.)

Smith Mountain Morning is in hibernation already. (Got a sweet deal on the backing for this quilt.)
This blue log cabin beauty needs to be finished and quilted with wool batting.
Also, have Celtic Solstice as a work-in-progress laying on the cutting board.
S.O.S., help......I don't need to start anymore quilts for 2014 (New Year's Resolution).  So my mantra is now going to be "I think I can, I think I can" and keep chugging along until these quilts get completed.
I have linked up with Judy at Patchwork Times.
Yours in quilting,

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Chocolate You Must Try

At our recent quilt retreat in November, we had a snack table.  One of the ladies brought a large bag of Toffee Crunch Brownie Brittle.
I found a small bag at Toys R Us yesterday.  MMMmmmmm....good.  You can't eat just one piece.  It also comes in chocolate chip and mint chocolate chip.  I have been told that this is also sold at Costo but I am not a member.  Santa, please stuff my stocking with Brownie Brittle!!
Today I loaded a memory quilt and got started on the quilting.  It is one of five memory quilts my customer would like done by Christmas.  I doubt I can get them all done, but will attempt to get as many done as possible.  Of course, my part time job at the mall scheduled me for almost every day next week.   What is a girl to do?
We had at least six inches of snow this morning.  We spent part of the day shoveling out. 
The big dogs love romping in the fresh powdery snow.
Hope you had a Super Saturday.  I have linked up with Sew Can She
Yours in quilting,

Friday, December 13, 2013

Friday Finishes

I have been looking for a quilting project I started about 11 years ago.  Since we have had water in our basement several times as well as emptying the basement out to put in a basement water drainage system, my older quilting projects are packed in tubs.  Yikes, were to begin!!  I found a four blocks that had writing on them but could not locate the rest of the blocks.  These were blocks that the wedding guests signed and now the wedded couple would like their quilt for Christmas.  FIRST, I had to find it.  I looked in my neutrals drawer without success, but the drawer is now organized. 

When my hubbie got home last night, he helped with moving tubs and moral support.  I found the rest of the quilt fabric and signed blocks in about the fourth tub I looked in.  I certainly don't need to buy anything this year (2014).  Just need to work on finishing all quilts that are started.  (Are you all laughing along with me yet?)  I know there are many of you that have the same thing going on in your sewing rooms.  How many WIPS (works in progress), PIGS (projects in grocery sacks), or UFOS do you have? I am scared to begin counting after looking through those tubs.  I also might be the Kit QUEEN.  My friends have called me that in the past. 

One of the nicest gifts I ever received was for my birthday, my quilty friends came and organized my sewing room.  My friend, Corry, built me a hanging book shelf.  I am ready to have another organizing day.  I think I will suggest that to my quilty friends.  We need to take turns going to each others' sewing rooms and having an organizing day for each other.  What fun we could have!!

Finish for the week, a snowmen quilt.
It was hard to get it all in one picture so I will give you several views.
Below is the top.
Below is the bottom half.
Below is a closer view of the edge to edge snowflake pattern using white thread.
Have a great weekend.  We are suppose to get snow here starting tonight.  I am headed out to do a little Christmas shopping with a friend.  I hope to return home to load a quilt and get another one done.  The hubbie is on vacation next week. Yippee! I love it when he is around.
Yours in quilting,

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Country Sampler Finishing Directions

I have found the directions on Chicken Scratch Blog for the Country Threads Free Sampler.  I must have missed their blog post when it originally came out.  I have one more 12" block to make for December and then all the filler blocks.  I love the scrappiness of this quilt.  Unfortunately, it did not really make a dent in my scraps.  This is my 6" block for December.
This is how I keep all my blocks together.  I use a pant hanger to hold all my blocks.

Here is my backing fabric.  Got a great deal on this at Quilter's Garden.
This fabric will be my checkerboard border.
This will be a WIP for awhile longer but will keep plugging away at all the finishing.
If you are working on one too, would love to hear from you.
Yours in quilting,

Vintage Thursday - Buggy Blanket

I apologize for being so late posting today.  I got up to a gift of a dog with intestinal problems in her kennel overnight.  Such an appetizing thing to deal with in the morning.  She seems to be better now and is curled up sleeping.  We had changed food and were trying to do it slowly, but its evident that her tummy doesn't appreciate the change. 

As I was looking for a quilt kit, I found this baby buggy blanket.  There might be another name for this vintage item.

It was hard taking a picture of this.  It is laying on my kitchen table and I am standing on a chair to get the shot.  I believe this is silk with cut work.

This is a view of the top flap that folds and would have been under the baby's chin.

This cut work is in each of the bottom corners.
This is the center embroidery and cut work.  The blanket is double layered.  The thread is a pale blue.  I believe this may have been used for my dad and his two brothers.  If anyone knows about this type of blanket, I'd love to hear from you in the comments section.
Have a terrific Thursday.  I have linked up with Colorado Lady's Vintage Thingie Thursday.
Yours in quilting,

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Tuesday Tips - Lint Roller & Rotary Cutter

Many of us are busy cutting large amounts of units out for Celtic Solstice, the mystery quilt with Bonnie Hunter.  As you layer 2 to 6 strips of fabric to cut through, change your rotary cutter and use a new blade.  Let me explain why.  My friend, Cathy K., went on a trip to Pigeon Forge to the quilt show at Dollywood.  They stayed in a cabin and had a sewing retreat when they weren't taking classes at the show.  One lady layered 6 layers of fabric and then she was pressing really hard on the rotary cutter because it was dull.  She was pressing so hard that she skipped over the ruler and cut her finger badly.  They wrapped her finger tight to stop the bleeding and rushed her to the hospital.  The hospital was an hour away!  First, they had to soak the finger to get the fabric off the finger at the hospital.  Then they cleaned the wound, stitches, etc.  They gave her an antibiotic and tetanus shot. The rest of the trip she needed to keep the finger elevated.  By they time they arrived back in Illinois there was a red streak down her hand into her arm.  Yes, she had blood poisoning and ended up in the hospital.
The morale of this story:  Change your rotary blade, one blade is cheaper that a trip to an emergency room and/or hospitalization.  I am guilty of trying to make that blade last a few more cuts.  This is only one story, I have been at multiple retreats where ladies have cut the side of their finger due to a dull blade.  Please be safety conscientious.  I would rather we all spend the money on fabric rather than hospital/doctor bills.

Second tip today use a lint roller to clean your cutting mat.  My friend, Mary W., taught me this tip.  Since many of us are using our Tri Recs rulers, there are small tips we are cutting off the fabric and they stick to our cutting mats. 
Roll your lint roller over your cutting mat to clean off the little bits of fabric and threads.

Whatever quilting project you are working on play it safe.  Keep you fingers away from the rotary blades!

Today I am linking up with Freemotion by the River, Sew Darn Crafty and A Quilt Story.  Have a terrific Tuesday.

Yours in quilting,

Monday, December 9, 2013

Design Wall

Baby, its cold outside.  Its official, its beginning to look a lot like Christmas.  In Illinois, it has been bitterly cold and yesterday it started out with flurries.  This morning the yard is carpeted with a blanket of fluffy snow.  The neighbor broke out the snow blower and the City is plowing the streets.  We might have 2".

Yesterday I went to church but came home and snuggled in for the rest of the day.  First, I worked on cutting out Clue #2 for Celtic Solstice. It only take 488 of each piece, i.e. 488 yellows/golds, 488 greens, and 488 neutrals.  I also worked on Clue #1 (its all cut out).

Then I realized that Tuesday night will be Garden Club at Quilter's Garden.  I hadn't quite finished my BOM.  The incentive to finish my block each month is a drawing for a $10 gift certificate if you finish you block. So stopped working on Celtic Solstice and finished the final block for this BOM.  I have the finishing kit for this quilt but haven't gotten to it with all the cutting for Bonnie's quilt.
Next I moved on to the Country Threads BOM for 2013.  I had printed off the directions on the first of the month, but they found a mistake and I was waiting for the correction.  They gave the same cutting directions for both blocks.  Below is the 6.5" block.  I have really enjoyed this quilt because it is totally scrappy.  I have used stuff out of my stash (which it has only taken 20 years to have that kind of stash).  LOL
Today I have linked up with Patchwork Times and Quiltville's Snips and Quips.
Have a motivational Monday!
Yours in quilting,

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Secret Santa Soiree by the Colorado Lady

Thursday afternoon I arrived home to find a package awaiting me.  I started doing the happy dance.  Being like a little kid, I ripped open the brown paper and popped open the box., baby, there are five present tucked inside so neatly.   (Jiggy, Jiggy, Happy Dancing)

Count them, five unique gifts in the box. 
Don't they look festive under my trees?
The packages are numbered.  #1 Relax with a towel/wash clothe combo and holiday scented bath soap and scrunchy for bathing.  
# 2 Indulge - Mmm.....chocolate.

#3 Compose...journals for ideas and sketching....
#4 Create...2 - 1 yd cuts of fabric.
#5 the best for last.  This lovely small quilt with the phrase" It is in giving that we receive", by St. Francis of Assisi.  I put this right up on the wall in my dining room.
To top it all off, this precious handmade card. 
 The Christmas tree is also an ornament to hang on the tree.
Thank you, Thank you, Thank you to my Secret Santa.  I love it all and will put it to good use.
(Jiggy, Jiggy, doing the Happy Dance!!!) Its beginning to look a lot like Christmas here at Quilt Crazie.
A very big thank you to the Colorado Lady for all the planning, blog posts and emails to make the Secret Santa Soiree possible.
Have a blessed Christmas Season.  I have so much to be thankful for.
Yours in quilting,