Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Sew A Rows

In addition to being the chairperson of this years' Sew-A-Row program, I seem to be signed up to work on nearly all of them....well, not really, but I have three for this rotation which is May 1st to July 1st.

Amazingly, I've finished up the one at left and already passed it on to the next participant. Lynn started this one with the top row and Earlene did the second row.

My row is the whirligig on the bottom and I'm not sure if I like the secondary pattern formed by the white where the blocks come together. I'm thinking maybe I should have made the blocks smaller and put sashing between them.

This Sew-A-Row below was started by Phyllis and also worked on by Carolyn. My row is the bottom one, Martha Washington Stars. As soon as I got this one from Carolyn, I knew I needed to use brights and pull out the colors from the background. The background is a black with micro-dots in bright, clear colors. I contacted Phyllis, but she didn't have any more fabric, so when the Snooze-You-Losers went on our road trip several weeks ago, I looked in all of the stores we visited for this fabric and Oh Lucky Day--I found it in Talmadge, just outside Ukiah. I snapped up 2 yards and came home to start sewing.

Two of three are done! The final one is an ultra-mini started by Betty with 2 1/4 inch log cabin blocks set on point (4 of them) surrounded by half square triangles that are about 3/4 inch! Yikes! I'm going to do 4 fan blocks also set on point and and maybe a border of flying geese.

You can come visit me at the funny farm any time.....

Friday, May 25, 2007

Fun Times in Fresno

We just got back from a flying trip to Fresno and a visit with my two favorite boys. Mom had our first day well-planned with a trip to the carousel for Benjamin and Nana. Benj loves the "Ride A Horsie" and we went on it twice. As you can see, we both had a good time and we even let Mom ride with us the second ride.

After the carousel, we went over to the theater met up with Dad to get tickets to see Shrek the Third. This was Benj's first trip to the movies and he wasn't quite sure about the noise level of the previews, which I swear are twice as loud as the movie itself.
We went the whole nine yards and got the kiddie popcorns for all of us except Mom, who isn't wild about it and Dad managed to finish Benj's just before he wanted more. Figures.

We had a great time at the movie and then picked up Dawn who was babysitting and her charge Alex, then met Pop at a local brew-pub for dinner. Worn out, Nana and Pop retreated to the motel and hit the sack.

The next day we hung out at home with Alex (Mr. Excitement), pictured at right. After he woke up, Nana let him get out of his clothes (but not diaper, I'm not that foolish), and gave him some floor time and baby calisthenics. We really worked to get a smile out of him, and this is as close as we got. He must have thought that his Nana was pretty goofy singing and making faces at him.

We came home tired on Wednesday and I'm back to sewing on some projects Kate sent home with me.

This being Memorial Day Weekend, take a moment to remember those who have lost their lives to the war in Iraq and Afghanistan. If you have a spare quilt or top, consider sending it to American Hero Quilts. You won't be sorry.


Saturday, May 19, 2007

Pat Speth Gives Us More Than a Nickel's Worth

The Santa Rosa Quilt Guild. was very lucky to have Pat Speth as this month's speaker and teacher. At our Thursday meeting, Pat gave a talk entitled "Five Inch Is A Cinch" and her trunk show was out of this world. Pat's specialty is using 5 inch squares to make units that are then sewn into blocks. This is a fabulous way to deplete your stash and cut up those odd bits of fat quarters that you needed for some special project or another.

You would not believe how many quilts she shipped to California just to show us. The woman is amazing!

My pal Becky came up from Lompoc and we took the class together on Friday, making blocks for Pat's quilt "Labor Day Madness," and as a bonus, we ended up with enough blocks for a second quilt, the pinwheel. Or at least we will when we finish sewing our blocks...LOL.

Becky and I both participated in the Nickel Swaps group on Yahoo for a while and we had a pretty good stash of them to start our quilts. I was shy on backgrounds and opted to use all the same fabric for my backgrounds. Becky's was scrappy.

This is one of Becky's pinwheel blocks made with leftover units.

And here is one of my Labor Day Madness blocks.

And here is a grouping of our classmates' blocks.

I was able to finish 10 blocks with dark large triangles and medium small triangles. I have the second 10 (which are reversed) sitting on the sewing table ready to be sewn up.

The hardest part of the whole procedure was getting used to using a 3/8" seam allowance instead of 1/4"~what an adjustment~. My seam ripper was my constant companion for a while, but I finally "got" it.

Great fun with great gals!! Thanks for coming up Becky!

UPDATE: That would be a 3/16" seam allowance, not 3/8".....try that one on for size!

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

American Hero Quilts

Thanks to the generosity of my fellow quilters in the Santa Rosa Quilt Guild, I was able to mail 5 quilts to American Hero Quilts. This wonderful endeavor, started by Sue Nebecker in Vashon Island, Washington, provides quilts to injured service personnel at Madigan Army Medical Hospital.

Like Diane, I totally disagree with Mr. Bush and his war, but feel the need to "do something" for the wounded troops and the families of those lost.

A note I received from Sue the day after the quilts arrived told me that the 2 XOXO quilts went to a pair of sisters who just lost their Daddy. She said the girls took the quilts "everywhere." One of the larger quilts went to a soldier who lost both legs in Iraq. She said that he cried when she presented him with the quilt.

Thanks to my pal Susan for turning me on to this very important project.

They accept quilt tops, backs, fabric, and though it doesn't say so on the website, children's quilts. Please support our wounded troops and the families of those lost.....