Sunday, September 27, 2009

The Challenge

Ever since she was a senior at Cal, my stepdaughter Sarah has worked for a couple who own a small clothing design business in Berekely. The wife designs all the clothes, upscale women's casual wear, and her husband manages this business and several other ventures. Sarah started as an office assistant in 2000 and now manages the business while they are on frequent trips. Last spring, she brought me two enormous sacks of trimmings from the sewing end of the business (done on site), and asked if I would make her employers a quilt for Christmas. The Asian women who sew don't like to throw anything away, so the fabrics are from last year's lines and mainly rayon weaves, linens, textured linens and pinwale cords among others. These bags weighed a TON, and the first thing I had to do was sort through and pick out the fabrics totally unsuitable for a quilt, which was almost half of it. I donated these pieces to the guild's various projects and a couple of ladies who sew for a living.

I was left with a pretty good amount of fabric that would work, but obviously, this stuff had to be sewed on a foundation....a fabric foundation. Here's a shot of the fabrics I'm getting ready to cut. The white strips are the remains of the patterns that are lightly glued to the fabric before cutting. Every raw edge of this fabric is serged because they buy plain greige goods from China and dye it themselves before making the garments. They may have garments of the same color, but different fabric type, so I will have strips like that as well.

So, I started cutting......and cutting.......and cutting. Strips, tons of them. Ala Bonnie Hunter. That would be because I'm using one of Bonnie's patterns, but you won't know which one until tomorrow. In the meantime, here's a pic of the strips. I have to say that I found this project pretty intimidating, because I am a traditional quilter, so I had to spend a couple of months looking at Bonnie and Tonya's blogs, as well as Gwen and Freddie's work to get my courage up.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

I'm All Caught Up

With my new Designer's Mystery BOM from the Fat Quarter Shop. I was three blocks behind when I started out (it took me a bit of time to decide to go for it), but I vowed to get caught up and stay caught up and I did.

This set of blocks promise to be just as great as last year's DMBOM, and I like the different setting of the finishing kit.

Also, last week I paid a visit on this guy:

And this one:

Thursday, September 17, 2009


That was me, today.

The third Thursday in September is always our Founders' Day Luncheon at the Santa Rosa Quilt Guild. Some of our charter members took quilting classes from Joyce Gross at Santa Rosa Junior College back in the 1970's, and founded a group that would last beyond the classroom. Well, did it ever! The guild is 33 years young this month and one of our founding member, Dotty Zagar, got up today and gave us some history. She hostessed the first meeting at her home in 1976. We are now 240 members strong and very, very busy ladies. We donate quilts to various local causes like the NICU at Sutter Hospital, the Valley of the Moon Children's Home, the local women's shelters, the Wounded Warriors at Camp Pendleton, and many more.

Another thing that happens on Founders' Day is awards. The guild gives an annual Merit Award to a member who has done exceptional work in a given field and this year member Glenda R. got the award for her constant schlepping of our opportunity quilt from venue to venue to make us a few bucks. Well deserved. Then the committee chair announced that there was an Honorary Life Membership award to be given this year and she started in about the winner's work on the newsletter (me), the membership roster (me again), and various committees like SewARow (me). I was in total shock, people. As Vice President, I'm on the Board--the same Board who votes on awards--and that sneaky bunch flew this one right by me.

I'm touched, happy, surprised and grateful. I'm grateful for this wonderful bunch of women and a couple of guys who work their collective fingers to the bone to make it all happen. I look forward every other Thursday to the meetings because the positive energy put out by my guild is the best.....and did I mention that they are very creative? If you check this link in the next day or two you'll see what I mean, and in the meantime, check the archives.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Embroidery Addict

I've been working on this Halloween quilt from Crabapple Hill, a kit I bought at the Napa Quilt Show last year. It is part of my ongoing plan to make an heirloom Halloween quilt for each of our kids. Number one is in the hoop for quilting, but with the wool batting, it is a bit too warm to work on much. Santa Rosa summer is September and October, so I'll plug slowly away and wait for the colder weather when it will be good for snuggling uner.
This pattern is called Hocuspocusville and consists of 12 embroidered blocks, and I have 3 finished with on in-progress. It is the perfect thing for riding Amtrak to see the boys or on a car trip, when applique is too fussy and quilting is too hard to keep straight. I think I mentioned last year that I saw this quilt finished into a flimsy at PIQF with another of Crabapple's Stitcheries put in the middle instead of the nine patches (click links). The gal was a customer of Thimble Creek's, so I may contact them and see if they can put me in touch with her for tips on enlarging. Maybe.

In the meantime, I'm also working on getting caught up on my new Designer Mystery Block of the Month and have 2 of the 3 blocks done for that.


Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Temptations and a Contest

All in one!

Check out this amazing Block of the month at the Fat Quarter Shop. It is the Civil War Tribute Quilt, and I am oh-so-tempted to jump in on this one, even though the total cost is bit high. It is a big quilt when finished and would probably fit my California king sized bed if I add a border to the outside.

Here's the contest aspect of it--the Fat Quarter Shop is giving away a $100 gift certificate! Follow this link and visit the Fat Quarter Shop and enter a comment for an entry. Put a link on your blog for another chance to win! Sign up for the BOM and let them know on the blog for another 5 chances to win. No affiliation with the Fat Quarter Shop, just an extremely satisfied customer.