Tuesday, January 29, 2013

My Bonnie moment

I have often wondered what it would be like to be Bonnie Hunter, zig zagging across the USA, teaching her wonderful classes. She often describes her huge duffel bags, packed with quilts. Quilts can get quite heavy! I have recently had the chance to haul my own heavy bags of quilts around.

A couple of weeks ago, I subbed for a second grade teacher on a Monday. They were just starting a new reading passage that week and it was titled "A Quilt Story". The story was about a little girl who felt more at home in a new place because she had her beloved quilt with her. Anyway...several kids in the class had no idea what the difference between a blanket and a quilt is.

I talked to the teacher and told her I would be glad to bring in a few quilts and do a little presentation for the kids. She was so excited!

When I came in, I started off by asking them if they knew what scraps were - and got a great explanation! I went on to show them scraps, some batting, and some orphan blocks. I had them guess the name of a few blocks - a log cabin block, flying geese, and a spiderweb block. I explained how I would take blocks and piece them into a quilt top.

At this point I showed them my scrappy trips top and asked them to guess how many little squares were in this top. They were all very surprised when I finally gave them the correct answer of 900!

I showed them several different quilts and got lots of oohs and aahs. They asked great questions like how long it takes to make a quilt. I showed them a picture of my featherweight and of my long arm machine. They thought it was funny that my sewing machine is almost twenty years older than me - and they think I am old.  

I did three presentations last week and did my last one this morning.  It has been a lot of fun sharing my quilts with these kids. One little girl has repeatedly come up to me and asked me to please teach her to sew!

Friday, January 11, 2013

The New Obsession

What do you get when you are able to sit home for 6 days straight while caring for your child that has the flu? Lots of sewing time! When her fever was up, she wanted me to cuddle with her on the couch - but otherwise I was free to be in the next room, taking care of my new obsession, the scrappy trips blocks found on Bonnie's site. I finished 25 blocks and decided to go ahead and make a lap size quilt. It is about 60 inches square and has 900 squares in it! I really like how it turned out.

Unfortunately, I am left with a huge pile of left-over strips - which are still calling my name - but I am going to press onto other projects!  I might have to use another of Bonnie's ideas and use the strips as a leader/ender project.  

I ordered myself some goodies last week - a small fat-quarter pack of Tula Pink's Salt Water fabric in the blue colorway.  Love it!  The polka dots on the bottom are from Riley Blake.  I also ordered the dots in another blue color and gray.  I am planning on using the Salt Water fabric to make myself yet another lap quilt - maybe a Yellow Brick Road pattern - so I can use every last square inch!  

Sunday, January 06, 2013

Drum Roll, please!

Sorry I left you all hanging yesterday - but my daughter seems to have contracted the plague.  It came on very suddenly yesterday around lunch time and she spent the rest of the day leaning against me, moaning "I don't feel good!"   She sounds even worse today and her fever is up a little bit.

Anyway - the lovely random number generator picked number 9 - which means Anne Bebbington of the UK wins!  Anne's tip is:  
Here in the UK very few quilters are lucky enough to have sufficient room in their house to have a long arm quilting machine so most machine quilting is done on the same domestic machine that they use to make the tops. With a large quilt the bulk of the quilt sandwich can often drag and pull the work from under the machine needle - positioning your ironing board beside you at the same level as your machine bed gives you an extra surface to support all that bulk and prevent dragging - I've just machine quilted a 90" square in this way and it's a real help.

Anne - if you will email or FB message me your mailing address and your choice of color, I will get some fabric in the mail to you this week.

Have you seen the latest sewing craze sweeping through the internet?  It is Bonnie's Scrappy Trip around the world!    Check some out here,  or here,  or here, or here!  I resisted as long as I could - but now I have fallen hard!  I have decided to make this a year long project.  I'm going through my fabric boxes pulling out the pieces that are too big for the scrap bin but too small to be very useful.  You need strips that are 2.5"x16".  I am cutting mine at about 16.5" to give myself a little safety net.   Besides pulling out the pieces for these blocks, I am pulling out any fabrics that would be appropriate for a QOV.   Making a little room in the fabric boxes is always a good thing!   Have you gotten in on this craze yet?

I am off to sew one more block before husband and son get home from church - hopefully bringing us some lunch.   The sick one is watching Dr. Who on my iPad and I can sneak away!


Tuesday, January 01, 2013

400thPost and a Giveaway!

Who knew that in August 2005 that I wouldn't run out of things to say before now?  I am sure that Nina knew!   For over 7 years, I have rambled about my quilting and my life in general.   Back then I had a 6 year old and a 4 year old.  Now they are a whole lot bigger!   Maddie has made several quilts of her own!  

This first one she made for a friend who was being deployed to Iraq.  Thankfully he is back home safe.
 The second one was for her language arts class - they were reading Treasure Island.  Her teacher was amazed - especially when Maddie told her she could keep it!

Her most recent quilt was made for a friend who was recovering from a serious surgery.  The friend is a huge Alabama fan - so it took all of Maddie's love to make her this quilt.  Maddie is an Auburn girl!  

Ian, on the other hand, hasn't wanted to make a quilt - yet.  Although he always happy to be the recipient of one!  His latest present was his NY Giants quilt for Christmas.  


 Well, in honor of my 400th post, I want to do a giveaway.  To the winner, I will mail 10 fat quarters of fabric from my stash.  You will get to choose the color!  About the only colors that are missing are purple and orange.  Stop snickering, Nina!  Or you can choose a rainbow if you prefer.  I promise you won't be disappointed!   All you have to do is leave me a comment telling me your favorite quilting tip.   

If you want an extra entry,  share a link to the giveaway on your Facebook page and then come back and tell me you have done so.
I'll draw a name on Saturday, January 5th.

Good luck!