Friday, December 30, 2011

So many bandwagons, so little time

As the year continues to wind down many of the more prolific bloggers are posting details of Quilt Alongs or Programs for the coming year. I hope to include some of these ideas in my own work for 2012. Marge at Delaware Quilts is having a Year of Giving. Each month she will feature a quilt idea and you make one or more from the idea and donate it locally to a group of your choice. Lyn Brown at shares many quilt ideas. One thing she has indicated she is doing this year is a year of doll quilts. The first was posted mid-December and was called Time Flies. Our Scrapbag group was short of doll quilts at the end of the year this year so I am going to follow Lyn and make some doll quilts. The Rainbow Scrap Challenge returns with some new wrinkles. Whatever your plans for the new year I hope they come with a hearty dash of good health and the stamina needed to see your goals to completion. Joanne

Friday, December 23, 2011

As another year winds down and a new one approaches

I am satisfied with my efforts for this year. There are so many directions one could turn for new things to sew for next year. I want to use up more of my scraps. Kind of like making something for nothing. I want to finish some of my outstanding UFO's and I want to make a few more doll quilts than I did this year as we could have used more at Toy Drive time this month.
I am getting my kits organized for my turn at Scrap Bag Quilters in January. We will be using home made Layer Cakes and I have done the math so that the project could be made with nickles or other size squares. My finished sample was done with nickles. Makes a nice baby size quilt. I will reveal all after the day has happened.
We are having an extra Community Outreach day in Janaury and I volunteered to get that ready. More after than event too. Don't want to ruin the surprise for participants.
Thanks for reading in 2011 hopefully more to come in 2012. Joanne

Sunday, December 18, 2011

A ray of sunshine

This quilt is on its way to a new owner. The daughter of friends of ours is in hospital waiting a transplant. She is always cold. I hope the bright cheery colours will help warm her up while she waits.

Yesterday I used some of the 1 1/2" strips to make a lasagna style doll quilt. I just needed some mindless sewing to do. My cards have all gone in the mail. I am striking a few other things off my TO DO list. Hope to sew some more today. Joanne

Monday, December 12, 2011

I am just peeking out from behind quilt number 50 for the 50 quilts from stash challenge. This quilt is called Just Squares and is a Mystery for Relays quilt. Various challenges are beginning to emerge for 2012. So many are tempting I need to do some careful thinking before jumping on too many band wagons. Joanne

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Earlier this year I found this challenge. I love to read but I feel as though I( am the world's slowest reader so I was a little reluctant to post the button. I did however make a list as I read this year. As of Decmber 1st I had read 56 books and that does not count quilting books. So maybe if they post a similar challenge next year I will not be as nervous about taking the challenge on publically. Joanne

Sunday, November 27, 2011

50 quilts from stash challenge nears the finish line

This little baby quilt was made from "waste" triangles and from fabric samples that consisted of black and white squares. All the sample pieces were individually cut to make certain they were all the same. The borders were the strips left after the original pieces were cut. I donated the quilt to Project Linus with the Kincardine Sunset quilters guild.

I have reached 43 in the 50 quilts from stash challenge. The goal is definitely within sight. Sadly I do not think I was overly successful with the Rainbow Stash challenge as most of my quilts seem to have more than one focus colour as part of their design. Joanne

Saturday, November 5, 2011

A Flurry of Finishes

This is yet another of the tiny brick pattern quilts. I've made five of them now. I love seeing how different colours "play" together. I have another small box of pink bricks and a larger box with all my leftover bricks. This quilt will go to Kincardine for donation to Project Linus. I have three others that are ready to go next week also. A friend and I went to the keeper of the Scrap Bag quilts and selected 10 to be given to children that were tornado victims in Goderich. After seeing the damage last weekend a full two months after the tornado struck it truly is a miracle that only one person lost his life. Joanne

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Back to sewing again

This little duffle bag was made for my grandson. There is a blue one for my other grandson. During my first visit to Charlottesville, Xavier found some bee fabric at the local quilt shop. He thought I should buy some and make something for him with the fabric. Hence the duffle bag. They are apparently just the right size for a sleep over.

My quilting "mojo" was lost in the shuffle of cleaning out my sewing room. I can say that my sewing room has been cleaned and everything has been sorted. The room is ready to be used. At the last Kincardine Sunset Quilt Guild meeting one of the members approached me at the break. She told me how her niece had been given one of the quilts I donated to Project Linus last spring. The aunt, a member of the guild, recognized it from show and tell at the quilt guild meeting. She had taken a picture of her niece with the quilt and told me how much the quilt meant to the niece. I was mighty close to tears. So often we make quilts and give them away hoping they will end up in a good home where someone cares for them. This time I got the proof in a picture and the story from the aunt.

I felt reinvigourated after the guild meeting and have been in my sewing room daily since then. I have a line up of over 8 quilt tops ready for quilting and several others close to being tops. The fun has returned to this activity. So over the next month as I get these quilted I plan to post pictures and I think I just might reach my goal of 50 quilts from stash this year. Joanne

Saturday, September 10, 2011

What happened to the summer of 2011?

I can hardly believe it is September. We had a very chopped up summer with very little actually being accomplished. A wee little mouse problem has lead to the total clear out of my sewing room. No little guys in evidence but the thought still lingers. The total clean out did however make me realize what a pile of UFO's I have amassed and how much stash I have accumulated. I would say what was I thinking but there might be some doubt that I was in fact thinking.
All I have actuully finished this summer are three duffle bags. One is for myself and the other two are for the boys. The older grandson said bees and so bees it was. I found five different fabrics with bees on them and used them. Hopefully a picture can be taken soon and I can post it.
Quilt guilds start up next week. I attended the Project Linus meeting in Kitchener on behalf of the Kincardine Guild. I have yet to get ready my BOM for next week. So time to step away from the computer and sit down at my sewing machine. Piecefully, Joanne

Friday, July 22, 2011

Tuesday with members of the Grey Bruce Home Economics Association

I was able to spend Tuesday with other members of the Grey Bruce Home Economics Association. We made 132 blocks of the Anita's Arrowhead pattern. The pattern can be found in Quiltmaker November/December 2010 or in Anita Grossman Solomon's book Rotary Cutting Revolution. We each brought blue and off white/beige squares to work with and spent the day sewing. We took a break for a delicious pot luck lunch and again for a pot luck supper. Two of the members took the blocks home to assemble the top and a third member who does long arm quilting will quilt it for us. Eventually the quilt with find a home at the Habitat for Humanity build scheduled for Hanover, ON. It was a terrific but tiring day. Joanne

Friday, July 15, 2011

QAYG Apple Core Table Runner from Quilt Canada Class

Much as I tried to avoid being in the picture a part of me is there. This is the Quilt As You Go Table Runner project from one of the classes I took at Quilt Canada in May. It is much brighter and bolder than I normally go. There was technique to this table runner and I think I could do better on a second one. I do however like this one.

My trip to Virginia last weekend was good. It was very HOT there. I did manage to get to a quilt shop and I did manage to help out the local economy.The lady at the front desk of the hotel told me about another shop but a visit to that shop will have to wait until my next trip south.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Another Scrappy Finish

Yet another scrappy one. This one has gone in the mail to my nephew for a wedding gift. The pattern is called Angles and Squares and was taught in a workshop at the Kincardine Guild by Heather Stewart. I was very pleased with the result.

I am heading to Virginia with my daughter and the grandson's later today (well early tomorrow). My googling has revealed a quilt shop near the hotel we will be staying at. I called them yesterday and this weekend is their special Christmas in July event. I sure hope I get there. Joanne

Sunday, June 26, 2011

A Flurry of Finishes

These two tiny brick quilts are my most recent finishes. I tend to get "stuck" on a particular design and go with it in a variety of colour ways or sizes. So three tiny brick quilts finishes and three more have the bricks cut out. They will be donation quilts when my guilds resume in September.

The final Scrap Bag Quilter session of the season was last Wednesday. We tied 10 quilts and sent them home with different members to have the binding completed over the summer. I only have one to do. In May I enjoyed a variety of quilting experiences. The Quilt Pocket (a yahoo group) held Jambo 2011 in London and I attended that. What a fabulous time. The organizers had thought of everything. We stayed in a Community College residence. There was time for sewing, time for sharing, time for fun, time for eating, especially chocolate and time for shopping. And a couple of us even managed to sleep a little.

Then two weeks later Quilt Ontario happened in London. I signed up for two classes. Karen Combs More Patchwork Illusions and Ursula Reigels QAYG Apple Core Table runner. Both classes were great. I have one project almost done and the other is close to finished. The shows associated with the event was inspirational. Although I have come to terms with the fact that I will never be an "Art Quilt" type of quilter.

Then in another ten days some friends locally organized and held a retreat. Again a well organized event with lots to do, sewing time, eating time, a couple of games and just great fun with friends.

I have hit the half way mark on my 50 quilts from stash this month. The list just needs to be updated.

That's about it for now. I want to get the binding attached to my Scrap Bag quilt so I can stitch in the evening. And my nephew is getting married next month so I would like to actually finish his quilt before the wedding.

Piecefully yours, Joanne

Saturday, May 7, 2011

National Quilt Month in Canada

To celebrate National Quilt Month in Canada I am going to go to Quilt Canada in London, Ontario and taking two classes. I am also going to Jambo 2011 in London later this week. Jambo is the every other year event for the Quilt Pocket a Yahoo group. The planning committee has all kinds of quilty fun planned for us from Mystery bus tour to donating quilts we have made to the local cancer treatment centre. I seem to be aquiring all kinds of blocks that are ready to turn into quilts but don't seem to be taking that next step. I do however have my machine back from the repair shop. Our weather is finally warming up a bit so some outdoor activities can begin. For me that is hanging the wash on the line and admiring the work hubby does in the garden. Soon we will have our own fresh asparagus. Joanne

Sunday, April 3, 2011

A Quilt for Kincardine

This quilt is Woven Ribbons from Quilters Cache. I am donating it to the Kincardine Sunset Guild for their outreach project this year. It was very easy to put together. I virtually never work with pastels so that was different for me. I have finished a baby quilt and two doll quilts for the next Scrap Bag meeting. I feel as though I am back at it. That being said my workhorse Bernina needs repair and it will be almost two weeks before we can get it to the machine repair person and then he will have it for a couple of weeks at least. The foot pedal is not connecting. We tried to take it apart ourselves and were not successful, so we figured a professional repair was in order.

I had a great trip to Helen's for her annual April Fool's Day sale. Everything in the store is half price. I took my own bag and it was completely full when I walked out. I was primarily stash enhancing, no specific projects in mind. Joanne

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Reading instead of quilting

Well I have been reading instead of finishing up some quilts. I have 6 of them sitting in the house ready for quilting. I might have to rename the blog, Tops by Joanne. I finished The Union Quilters by Jennifer Chiaverini. This is a story of the Civil War in the US and the impact the war has on families from the Elm Creek Valley. Since I do not have a wealth of Civil War background I cannot say how accurate the information was in the story but it seemed very realistic to me. Today I finished A Red Herring Without Mustard by Alan Bradley. He is a Canadian author and his lead character Flavia De Luce is a charming and precocious 11 year old. She loves chemistry and fancies herself as a bit of a sleuth. The time period for the stories (this is the third in a series) is early 50's in England. I love Flavia and am now waiting for the next book to come out. Another book I finished recently was The Water Rat of Wanchai by Ian Hamilton. Another Canadian author, this was his first book. The lead character in this novel is a smart, female, Chinese, forensic accountant. I have my name in for the next book in this series which is expect out in July. I am hoping to get back in the sewing groove soon. Joanne

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Kincardine Sunset Quilt Guild-Project Linus

This little quilt is called Steppin' to the Nine's . The directions were provided on-line at one of my Yahoo groups. I am donating it to the Kincardine Sunset Quilt Guild's Project Linus drive for this year. Yesterday was the day I handed it in. Several others have made lovely baby quilts and some for older children too. The Kincardine Sunset Quilt guild is a very friendly group and I enjoy their hands on approach to quilting. Our drive to Kincardine was fine but the return trip featured ice pellets, snow and rain. That is the nasty part of living in this part of the world. Two of the quilters have made quilts following directions I gave verbally in January. That was a real boost.
I have been continuing to work away at my quilts but have no recent finishes to picture. I have four that have the blocks finished and are waiting in line to be made into rows and then a top. I did aquire the tail end of a quilt batt so will have no excuses for not finishing them. Joanne

Saturday, February 26, 2011

No pictures today. It has been a busy week with some quilty events. Wednesday was Scrap Bag Quilters. Elaine made the kits for this month and what a treat to just sew for the day and not be "responsible" for anything. I finished my top by lunch time and started a second one which I brought home to finish. Jeanette was out for the first time since October and is happy to have her cancer treatments behind her. I am making good progress on my red rainbow scrap challenge but know that it won't be finished before the end of the month. Tonight we went out to celebrate my husband's not really a birthday event. He is one of those special people born on February 29th so young forever. Our favourite restaurant is on winter hours so it was tonight or later next week. There are a few Mysteries coming up in the next little while so I have been looking through the stash for material suitable for them. I have reached 16 on my 50 quilts from stash challenge so that is coming along also. Hope to have some finishes in the next little while. Joanne

Monday, February 21, 2011

The quilt pictured today is my version of Coin Collection by Rachel Griffith found in the July/August 2010 Quiltmaker magazine. In the original quilt new yardage was used. I made the coins as Chinese Coins on a foundation. Then followed the directions for the assembly. It is a great stash buster. Each coin set is 5" by 15 1/2". The finished quilt is 53" by 68". Joanne

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Family Day Holiday in Ontario

Tomorrow is Family Day in Ontario. It is a mid-winter holiday where families are encouraged to spend time together. Our family lives about two hours away from us so today while the weather looked OK we made a run for it. I delivered the blue and yellow quilt to my sister and the little hot mat pictured to the left. The plates set on the placemats give you some sense of scale. I still have more of these tiny HST to make into something.
We got our hug bank replenished by the grandsons. And had a lovely birthday lunch to celebrate all the February birthdays. Grandson number 2, his Dad, his other Grandma and my Husband all have February birthdays. It meant the other three at the table had to sing Happy Birthday extra loud.
I have my Scrap Bag group this week, something I always look forward to. I am wondering who was able to finish the project from last month. Joanne

Friday, February 18, 2011

Finally a finish for February

The first part of this month very little was accomplished in the sewing room. We babysat the grandson's for a week and then needed another week to "recover" and catch up on what had not been done the previous week.
This quilt is the same quilt design that I made for my sister (the blue and yellow quilt) but for this one I used the last of some pink scraps and cut the bricks 1 1/2" by 2 1/2". The setting is 8 blocks by 11 blocks. I will be donating it to my Scrap Bag group.
I took another quilt to a baby shower yesterday and was a little overwhelmed when the new Mom started to cry when she saw it. She did not have any quilts for her very sweet little guy. The quilt was a Mystery one that I made very scrappy and it turned out to the the Jewel Box pattern.
I have finished the quilting and the binding for the red Heartstrings quilt from late Janaury. And two more quilts are being quilted or need binding. It feels good to have a finish or two. Joanne

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Nothing quilty has been finished around here for over a week. Several projects are moving along towards completion. Last week we had our grandsons here. The boys are almost 3 and 4 1/2. So they had our undivided attention for the time they were here. Our daughter and her family are relocating to Virginia once they sell their house. Our son-in-law has now "moved" to Virginia. He was to start work today.
My Scrap Bag group last week went well. All 10 kits were either worked on or taken home for a friend to complete. Hopefully they will come back in February as tops or better yet as quilts. I am working on a baby quilt in pinks using the same block pattern but with the tiny bricks. Looks like 80 blocks will make a nice size baby quilt.
Judy L's UFO challenge beat me this month. I don't know why. And the new number for this month is the other Bargello I had on my list. It's a short month. I'll have to get cracking. Joanne

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Heartstring Monday

Monday afternoon was a great sewing afternoon. This is one quilt assembled from the three sets of blocks that were completed. I still need to quilt it. Joanne

Sunday, January 16, 2011

A Mug Rug

I think my personal jury is out on whether I like mug rugs or not. This one is 7" by 12". Big enough for a coffee and a snack. This one is going in the mail tomorrow as a swap. I also finished all 16 of my Maple Leaf blocks. Tomorrow is the community outreach sewing afternoon. The local grocery store provides the work room free to not for profit groups. We have to take our sewing machines, irons, cutting boards etc. We are going to be making simple string blocks. Hope the weather co-operates.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Civil War Block of the Week

Barbara Brackman is posting a Civil War block of the week this year. Today's block was Seven Sisters. I am not much of an applique person so I tackled this one with considerable trepidation. I seemed to turn out OK.
What else have I been working on this week. Well some swap items. 15 Maple Leaf blocks for an on-line Canadian group and my first Mugrug for another on-line group. I have the blocks done for three more quilts but sewing them together may have to wait a couple of weeks.
Our son-in-law will be relocating to Virginia in just over a week. We have offered to babysit the grandsons (3 and 4 1/2) so our daughter can go with him to see where they will be living for the next couple of years. Joanne

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Rainbow Challenge-Blue

This is my first "blue" finish for January. I say "blue" in quotes because there is yellow scattered through the quilt so strictly speaking it is not only blue. I call this a brick friendly block. Each piece is the same size. For this quilt all pieces are 2 1/2" by 4 1/2". The block works for 1 1/2" by 2 1/2" bricks and for 3 1/2" by 6 1/2" bricks. I will be leading a workshop for this block at our Scrap Bag quilters meeting in January. Whoever is leading the workshop prepares kits for the project they are leading. I have made 10 kits and at a minimum of 280 pieces per kit that was a lot of stash busted.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Waste not, want not or how I learned to love bonus triangles

This small doll quilt is for my Scrap Bag Quilters group. We give doll quilts to the toy drive at Christmas. This one is made from the "waste" or "bonus" triangles from a quilt I made last year. Each HST is 1 1/4" finished. I sometimes get a little obsessed with using up bits.
With regard to progress on my other challenges for this year I have completed 8 quilts in the 50 quilts from stash challenge. I have pulled my blue scraps out to look at them and make a decision about what to make and I found UFO #6. It was started the month before I was diagnosed with cancer three years ago. So going back to try to finish it is a little tough. But I have the perfect place to hang it if I can get it done.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Lasagna (not for eating)

This is one of my final finishes for 2010. The style is called lasagna. Basically you sew a many mile long strip of same width scraps. A strip about 40m long makes a nice single bed size. Then fold it back on itself and sew the long side together. This step is repeated until you have a quilt the size and shape you want. There are other variations for this style of quilt. This particular quilt was made from the last kit I got ready for my Scrap Bag Quilters group. The strips were 3 1/2" wide.
I was able to find my Number 6 UFO, and to get out my blue scraps for the Rainbow Challenge. My stitching will be focused on getting two quilts quilted so a friend who is getting radiation treatments can fill her spare moments finishing the binding. Since we live in a very small town we have to go to a city three hours away for this type of treatment. No need to ask how I know. The hospital has a residence for we out of towners but it is nice to have something to do to help pass the time. Joanne