Thursday, August 12, 2010

Pets on Quilts!

SewCalGal is hostessing a Pets on Quilts online quilt show through August 21st. Well, I love pets on quilts, so I had to enter it with an oldie but goodie of mine.
This quilt is entitled "There's a Schnauzer on My Quilt!" I started this quilt back in 2005 at a Billie Lauder workshop held by our guild and finished it in 2006. I modified Billie's pattern a bit to make it a Miniature Schnauzer complete with 3-D eyebrows and a long floppy tongue (just like my wee Gator, who loves to lick people's teeth).

I hand quilted this quilt and gave it to Michelle, my husband's ex-stepdaughter for the birth of her first son Arjuna. Back in the day, my hubby and Michelle's mom had a fabulous schnauzer, Cindi, a little darling and when I met her, it was love at first sight. Cindi's life was cut short by diabetes, but her memory lives on and on.

Sunday, August 08, 2010

Borders: Long May They Wave

Do you ever find yourself in a quilter's quandry?

Or maybe it isn't a quandry at all and you just fail to pay attention to what you "should" do and take the easy way out? You think: "Self: it won't matter just this one little time if you don't measure your project before adding the border. After all, the project is only 35 inches square." "The border isn't pieced, heck half of it is even straight grain of the fabric." "No problemo, dude."


I'm here to tell you that it doesn't pay to listen to the bad girl on your shoulder and take a shortcut. Having just added said border to a wall-hanging for my son, I can tell you that size doesn't matter. No matter the size of your top, measure it in three places (top, middle, bottom) horizontally and three places (left, middle, right) on the sides. Then you may average the three numbers for each dimension and arrive at the correct border size. You do not, I repeat do not just slap on a long piece of fabric. The time saved by not measuring will surely be spent bonding with your favorite seam ripper!

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

A Thing of Beauty is a Joy Forever

And all that jazz.

Last week, I spent the week in Lompoc with my friends Becky and Kathy and Laurinda. We sewed, chatted, laughed, cooked and ate, not necessarily in that order. Becky was hard at work on a Debbie Caffrey "Three or More" quilt for a family member in Christmas colors. Nice.

Well, mostly. Did I mention that the recipient of this quilt is an Elvis fan? Did I mention that Becky found the most amazing Christmas fabric for an Elvis fan? Not the most beautiful, but certainly Elvis. Wait......maybe this IS the real E. Our personal favorite is the one at the center of the top of this piece of fabric, the picture affectionately nicknamed "Seizure Elvis." A closer look will reveal eyes kind of rolled upward and we thought the name more charitable than "Stoned Elvis."

Becky deliberated long and hard about putting this fabric on the front of the quilt as an outside border, but decided that it might be a bit over-the-top. Good call. BUT, Kathy and I pounded her mercilessly until she agreed to put just a wee piece of the King on the front. We thought she placed it perfectly, don't you?

Now I know you want a close up of that, don't you? Well here you go:


Sunday, August 01, 2010

A Long Term Project

You may remember the Mini-Round Robin that I joined several years ago after May Britt and her friends showed their projects off.

I decided to do something completely different this time, so I started with a heart that contained my Hubby's and my initials. I asked the participants to keep it pastel-ish with a Robyn Pandolph kind of look, and I think they went the distance, don't you?

This fun group decided to call it a day, but Kate is having a Stay-at-Home Round Robin for those who are interested. Not sure if I have time this year, but I have considered doing one for myself.

In the meantime, I did finish a quilt for a certain birthday person who will be celebrating later this month. No picture yet, but soon. I'm also working on a wall-hanging for my soon-to-be 30 year old son. I spent three days in Lompoc at my friend Becky's house, joined by friend Kathy and we sewed our hearts out. It was great therapy!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


One reason for not blogging much is the demonic, time-sucking Facebook. On the other hand, thanks to said demon, I won a book from Martingale for suggesting a name for the star block on their lunchroom floor. "Martingale Star" seemed pretty obvious to me, but apparently it was a winner, so lucky me! I have all three of Judy Hopkins "Around the Block" books, but it looks like this book has even more blocks and I do love her multiple size cutting information. Thanks to Martingale!

One of my latest projects is a block of the month from ThimbleCreek, a quilt shop in Concord, CA. Those who know me, also know that I adore Halloween and have several fabulous Halloween quilts in progress. I plan to leave one for each of the kids when I can no longer enjoy them. This one is called Ichabod Hollow and was designed by Joe, one of the owners of ThimbleCreek. The applique portion is nearly done and I have the picket fence and star fabric waiting for my attentions. Next week is a quiltfest with Kathy B. and Becky in Lompoc, and I hope to make a bit of progress on this.

Friday, July 09, 2010

Having Fun With The Boys

Benjamin and Alex and their parents came by over the long weekend going to and from Crescent City to visit friends, so I got to see them twice!

On Tuesday night we went to Rosso, a local wine and pizza place and were lucky to get the family booth at the back of the restaurant. Right behind the us was a sous-chef station where a very sweet young lady making flatbreads and salads chatted with the boys nonstop. They loved watching her prep the food and had to be coerced to take a snap with Nana (can you tell?). The boys were given a lump of dough to shape as they pleased and it was returned with a cup of red sauce for dipping. As you might imagine, it was the hit of the evening.

We are back to normal now, and today our handyman will finish our mini-renovation of the master bath. We removed our 10 gazillion gallon bathtub and are tiling in the space to use for storage of wines-in-progress and a cabinet for supplies for same. According to Dan the Handyman, it costs $20 in water to fill these tubs and I'll bet we'd not used ours in 5 years. Only the boys did, and they like to shower these days. Adios tub, hello wine room!!

Saturday, July 03, 2010

Long Time No Blog

It seems like forever since I blogged, and it pretty much has been. Sometimes your star points just don't match up.

In January, I became President of the quilt guild and within 10 weeks, we had to put together a tri-guild luncheon for the three local quilt guilds. The learning curve has been steep, dealing with the various and sundry personalities of different members pretty much tapped out my creative energy during the first half of the year. I have my "sea legs" now and have agreed to do a second year, with hopefully fewer hassles and stress. After all, we're supposed to be there to have fun, aren't we?

I'm also looking forward to more quilting time!