Monday, May 10, 2021

Humble Quilts Doll Swap


I participated in Lori’s (Humble Quilts) doll quilt swap again this year and was the lucky recipient of this little gem from Debra Rammelsberg.

She definitely made it expressly for me because she used the potholder method to put these precious little baskets together. Amazing!

Spot on Deb, I adore it! She wrapped it in this gorgeous print and included these sweet little snips.

I’m a happy camper!

 This is the quilt I made for Pam Losely.

I made it with the blues and pinks in Barbara Brackman’s “Ladies Legacy” line. I had never used a jelly roll before and was amazed at how much fabric is in them. This was the 3
rd quilt I made from one roll!

 Thanks for hosting another great swap Lori!


Friday, April 30, 2021

April Monthly Mini


Once again, my fellow quilters, Cynthia (Wabi-Sabi Quilts) and Barb (Fun with Barb) have a part in this mini quilt. Cynthia shared this fabulous Japanese “bear with umbrella” fabric with Barb. When I saw Barb’s January mini (here), I raved about how cute that little bear was, so she sent me one (once again, quilters are the best!). 

 We are starting to get busy in the boatyard, so my Spring minis are often very simple. I just Log Cabined around the sweet little bear. I hand quilted around him and then machine quilted in the ditch around the logs. 

I used a cheater log cabin print on the back. 

 I had a difficult time naming this one. My initial thought was, “April Showers” for obvious reasons. Then, realizing that it is still “mud season” in Maine, “Mud in the Cabin” was considered. But, in the end the Covid quarantine won and I decided on “Cabin Fever”. 

I would like to share a link to my friend Shirley Farnsworth's Facebook page. She doesn't have a blog, but she has been posting some wonderful mini quilts of hers and I think you would all enjoy the show (here)

And, in other "tiny" news; You need to see what Pam Buda has just come up with (here). These are the cutest tiny baskets ever!! Her pattern is now available so you can make your own micro mini any time. So cute!

Now, let's see what our fellow mini makers came up with this month. Kyle (Timeless Traditions) was almost apologetic that she didn't make a mini this month. Make sure to visit her to see why. Amazing!! If I've missed anyone or if you want to jump in, let me know!

 Quilting Babcia (Amity Quilter)

Randy (Barrister’s Block)

Cathy (Big Lake Quilter)

Cyndi (Busy Thimble) 

Grace (City Mouse Quilter) 

Barb (Fun with Barb)

Gladi (Gladi’s Quilts)

Shasta (High Road Quilter)

Julie (Julie K Quilts)

Kathy (Kathy’s Quilts)

Katy (Katy Quilts)

Sandy (My Material Creations)

Angie (Quilting on the Crescent)

Barbara (Quilts, Gravestones and Elusive Ancestors)

Janet (Rogue Quilts)

Kyle (Timeless Reflections)

Cynthia (Wabi-Sabi Quilts)

Monday, April 26, 2021

Another Filler Project???


If you read my blog regularly you know that I do a lot of hand work. I simply cannot sit and watch TV or listen to radio or even most conversations without a needle in my hand. I usually have 2 or 3 large projects going at one time, but when there is a “gap” between them or I am simply too tired to reach for something big, I pick up one of my “filler projects”.

 These poor things can sit languishing in boxes and tins for ages waiting their turn. I currently have 3 “grab and go” containers. The oldest (started in 2015) is this little potholder quilt with 4” 9-patches and appliqued circles. All the blocks and bindings are done so I am in the assembly process which may take another 6 years! 

 The second box holds the yo-yo’s for this fun little feedsack project. 
No hurry – yo’yo’s don’t expire. 

 Number 3 on the list are my little hexies. These are really long term on going things to pick up when I have no brain function at all. In fact, I keep a tin of them in my car for taking into doctor visits or other appointments or if I am waiting at a long traffic light (just kidding, we only have 2 in our town!). 

 So… with 3 already in the works, why would anyone start a 4th?? I had amassed quite a collection of Betsy Chutchian fabrics and charm squares and decided it was time to do something with them. There will eventually be 238 four inch blocks with an appliqued circle in the center. Since I am using no repeats, that means there will be at least 476 different fabrics, possibly more if I choose to make borders. 

I am cutting out the centers of the background fabric for - yup, yet a 5th filler project! 

I'd like to know what you do for "filler projects". Hand or machine, I know you have them!

Since it is Monday, I am linking up with Judy's Monday linky party. Do click on (Small Quilts and Doll Quilts) with a morning beverage and enjoy. 

Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Never Enough Time!


I may just be the world’s worst self promoter! Twenty one of my quilts have been hanging at the New England Quilt Museum for nearly a month and I still haven’t been to see them. Nancy (Joy For Grace) kindly e-mailed me that a fellow blogger, Barbara Poole (Life From the Roots) had been to the museum and posted about her visit (here)

 There is so much going on there this month. Please visit NEQM (here) to see what is in store for you when you arrive. 

 I would love to know if any of you have had a chance to visit. I promise to post photos as soon as I can get down there! 

Tuesday, April 13, 2021

Jelly Rolling with Ladies Legacy


After seeing the pattern that Barbara Brackman posted (here) for her Ladies Legacy line, I quickly ordered a jelly roll. I commented on her site that I had never used a jelly roll before, but was looking forward to making this one. The fabric isn’t due to arrive in stores for a few more weeks (she joked that the entire shipment was stuck aboard the “Evergreen” in the Suez Canal). So, knowing what an impatient person I am, she sent me one! It arrived last week and I spent the weekend playing.

 First up were the blocks from Barbara’s pattern. These 12” blocks made up very quickly. I thought about waiting for my preordered roll to come and making this larger but, at this stage, it was the perfect dimension for a quilt for the infusion center (36” x 48”) so I’m calling this top finished. 

 There was so much fabric left over, I chopped up some 2 ½” squares and made this pile of 4-patches. 

I used all the red and brown squares for this little top. 

 And, the pink and blue 4-patches made their way into this one. I adore this border fabric. It is an older Jo Morton from Andover which was inspired by a quilt from the International Quilt Study Center in Lincoln, NE. 

 Apparently, you can squeeze a lot of jelly out of one little roll. After 3 quilt tops there were still leftovers!


Monday, April 12, 2021

A Timely Gift


My local group, “Kaleidoscope Quilters” had a wonderful outdoor distance meeting on Saturday. The weather was perfect! We are a very charitable group and the bins of donation quilts fill up fast. I try to make at least one quilt a month for one organization or another. This month I had 2, one for Ronald McDonald House and one for the local infusion center. As I was popping them into my bag, I had second thoughts.

 Our quilting angel, Sharon, is always there to take whatever hot mess of a top I give her to whip into submission with her fabulous quilting. She is cheerful to a fault and you would never know that she has a chronic illness which brings her to the infusion center every week.

 The quilt I had slated for the infusion center was one that Randy (Barrister’s Block) and Barb (Fun with Barb) and I had done as a round robin a while ago. After my other quilting angel, “Kathy” did her longarm magic, I didn’t think I could part with it. I picked it up and realized it really needed to go to the special person who makes all these donations possible. So, although it seemed a bit like “taking coals to Newcastle”, I boxed it up with a ribbon and placed it in Sharon’s lap at the meeting. 

 After the meeting, Sharon came over to me a little weepy with her phone in hand. She said, I don’t know how you knew it, but this has been an extra rough week. Her son had just had open heart surgery at the Lahey Clinic in Boston. She showed me a photo of her son walking in the hospital after the miraculous surgery. As quilters, we just never know how we can touch someone’s heart at the right time.

 And, this is the little quilt that went to the Ronald McDonald House. Last May when I put out the request for orphan blocks for the “Community Supper” quilt, many of your sent more than one. The center of this is a crazy block that Claire (Cspoon Quilts) sent at that time. I finally used it Claire!  

I adore this little duck fabric. Wish I had bought the whole bolt. You know what they say, “hind sight is 20/20 yards”! I think we are all just glad that 2020 is hind sight!

 Happy Quilting!

Wednesday, March 31, 2021

March Monthly Mini


As you may recall, last May I requested orphan blocks for our “Community Supper” quilt. Some of you sent more than one block so I could choose which to use. Luann (Luann’s Loose Threads) sent 2 blocks, which I used front and back (here) and she also sent a stack of indigo and chocolate fabrics printed in South Africa. I have been ruminating on these gorgeous fabrics ever since. 

 I’ve been inspired by Cynthia’s (Wabi Sabi Quilts) boro style mini quilts for a long time. And, when Barb (Fun with Barb) made her January mini in the boro style (here), the lightbulb finally went on and I dug out these fantastic fabrics to make one of my own. 

I pillow cased the edges and then laid the pieces out and simply stitched over them. 

 When I showed the fabrics to Barb (via Zoom), she said they were called Swhe Shwe fabrics, so I quickly looked them up.

 These fabrics are sometimes called 'Three Cats' - a reference to the distinctive logo stamped on the back of the fabric. Originally, Shwe Shwe was produced in Manchester for export to South Africa. Today, it is made in South Africa by Da Gama Textiles. Traditionally, Shwe Shwe was always indigo, with the occasional red or chocolate brown design. 

 This fabric is on the stiff side so my fingers are a bit sore from pulling the chunky thread through. As you can see my stitching is very organic. The pillowcase edging was a bit of a challenge with such a thin piece of wool batting, but it was a good learning experience. It was fun trying a new method. 

I found a fun map of regional fabrics from the different countries in Africa.  

I was going to call it “Shwe Shwe” because I love the sound of those words, but I thought it more fitting to honor both the style and the fabrics so I’m calling it “East Meets South”. Besides, I have enough fabric left over for one or possibly two more minis, so I’ll save that name for another day. 

 Thanks a million, to Cynthia, Barb and Luann for inspiring this fun monthly mini!

 Now let’s see what my fellow quilters have created. There are some gems this month! Please let me know if I have missed anyone. You are always welcome to join the mini party!

 Quilting Babcia (Amity Quilter)

Randy (Barrister’s Block)

Cathy (Big Lake Quilter)

Barb (Fun with Barb)

Gladi (Gladi’s Quilts)

Shasta (High Road Quilter)

Robin (I Like to Create) 

Julie (Julie K Quilts)

Kathy (Kathy’s Quilts)

Katy (Katy Quilts)

Sandy (My Material Creations)

Angie (Quilting on the Crescent)

Barbara (Quilts, Gravestones and Elusive Ancestors)

Janet (Rogue Quilts)

Kyle (Timeless Reflections)

Cynthia (Wabi-Sabi Quilts)

Monday, March 22, 2021

"Full Circle" Finis!

 My “curves” theme quilt-a-long with Cecile and Corinne is finished. 

 The border gave me a few fits in the corners, but I was eventually able to fudge those curves enough so that from a distance they don’t look half bad! 

I underestimated the backing width by ¼” (yes 1 quarter inch!) and so had to improvise. 

This close up shows the true colors of the backing. Merchants Wife from Terry Clothier Thompson. 

 I contemplated using Barb’s Baptist Fan stencil (order one here) which would have fit the “curves” theme nicely. However, I really wanted those happy circles to “pop”, so I hand quilted around each one with smaller circles at the intersections. In the end, I decided to just “pop” the border circles too along with the serpentine curve. It’s a soft, squishy quilt and I love it.

 And, some great news. When I submitted the 20 quilts for my New England Quilt Museum exhibit, this quilt was still in the planning stage. When I finished it, I truly wished I had been able to display it with the others. First, because I adore it and second because it contains some of my favorite “Pilgrim Roy” neon fabrics. Gerald Roy has graciously loaned quilts (Yellow and Orange) from the Pilgrim Roy collection that will be at the museum at the same time as mine. So, when Pam (Pamela Weeks, Curator, NEQM) asked me on Friday if I might have one more quilt available for a space less than 50”, I was elated! I popped it in the mail today and it will be there waiting for me when I finally make the trip down.

Thank you, Cecile and Corinne for another wonderful and really fun sew-a-long challenge. Please visit Cecile’s Blog (here) and their FB page (here) for some delightful eye candy.

I'm linking up with Judy (Small Quilts and Doll Quilts) Monday design wall. Click on the link to see all the great Monday projects.


Friday, March 19, 2021

The Driving Force

 A question was asked on the “Road to California” Facebook page; “How long have you been quilting?”. I will always remember the first quilt I made. It was a crazy quilt made from scraps of cotton, wool, velvet, whatever I could get my hands on. I wanted something I could take out to our little playhouse in the woods and not worry about getting dirty because it was “all mine”. I was 9 years old. The scary part was when I answered the question, I realized that it was 56 years ago!

 If I had listened to the criticisms (you can’t use all those different materials in the same quilt it just won’t work) of my 4-H leader at the time, I might never have made another quilt. But, my childhood neighbor, Arzetta Poole, revived my interest in quilts and quiltmaking. She was the reason I made quilt number 2 and the hundreds after that. She was and always has been the driving force behind every quilt I make. 

Sadly, this is the only photo I have of her (on the far right).

She is sitting next to the Dodge sisters who lived on our road as well. Their claim to fame was that they ran the smallest Post Office in the country out of their chicken coop. I had a wonderful childhood!

Reading the wonderful posts of Michele McLaughlin (Pennsylvania Piecemaker) I realized there must have been hundreds of quilters in the past who inspired young people to make and enjoy quilts. Michele continues to post very informative and most enjoyable articles on quilts and quiltmakers. Do visit her bog (here).

 I feel fortunate to have had such a wonderful mentor. I would love to hear about who inspired you to become a quilter.


Tuesday, March 9, 2021

When the Sun Comes Out...


On Saturday my local “Kaleidoscope” group met on the sidewalk by the town gazebo. We all brought the community quilts we had been working on over the past few months. We filled many bins with quilts and pillowcases for many of our local charities. Of course. I did not take any photos. I know, I keep saying I will get better but…

 So, I pulled these wonderful photos off the group e-mail that our Co President Ann sent out. Thanks Ann!

 These are all form my “Seven Sistahs” group (unfortunately 2 of us were missing). Christina (Tina to me), made this sweet one in just my colors!

Not to be outdone, Charlotte used every color of the rainbow for this gem. 

Kathy made several for one charity or another.

This was my favorite of Kathy's.

And Karen went over the top with her version of Covid 19. Just when you thought there was nothing to smile about in 2020, she came up with this. Love it. 

 You can see what the temperature was by our attire. This is me handing over fabric for more pillow cases.

Needless to say, we didn’t hang out long. The 5 of us headed over to Panera for lunch. Even though we kept our distance, it was strange to be in a restaurant again. I felt like I had landed here from another planet.

 We got our first vaccine today and I am in hopes that things will be better by Fall. In the meantime, I’ll do what I can for the safety of the world by staying in my sewing room!!

Monday, March 8, 2021

Sarah's Wedding Quilt


My daughter’s sweet friend Sarah got married on Saturday. They did a “live stream” of the wedding and I wish I could show you the photos that my daughter showed me on her phone. Sarah wore her grandmother’s wedding dress and vintage stole and her husband wore a top hat and tails. So elegant!

 Anyway… I finished their wedding quilt yesterday. Simple yet functional. My daughter said – make it long (they are both tall) and use lots of green and turquoise. 

 Well, as you can see, I was able to fill the “green” part, but as I dug through my substantial stash, I realized I had very little turquoise or teal. I had to improvise and throw what I did have in with other blues. I used a warm wool batting (for cold Maine nights) and just quilted straight-ish vertical lines. All that really matters is that it makes a nice snuggle quilt.

 Hope you get some fun stitching in today!

Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Lucky me!

 I was so surprised when Kyle (Timeless Reflections) e-mailed me to say that I had won one of her fantastic “project bags”. It is absolutely beautiful! Now I will have no trouble “remembering” which project is in the bag! And, she snuck in a sweet star quilt pattern as well. Thanks Kyle! 

 I was also lucky to find this lost block this weekend.

I use a very complicated pressing system when trying to flatten a block with tiny pieces. 

Yes, these oversize quilt books serve more than one purpose in my sewing room. Anyway, I was looking something up on Saturday and lo and behold this block popped out from underneath the book. It was for this quilt back in December. You can read about it (here)

 Funny, I remember thinking that I had just miscounted when I ended up needing to make one more block. So… the pressing system only works if you remember where you put it.

 They say the wind chill factor is 25 below zero this morning. At 5 degrees with gusts of 50 mph, I am inclined to agree with them. Hope you are warm and cozy where you are. Have fun today.

Sunday, February 28, 2021

February Monthly mini


Fabric printer sheets are expensive! When I printed out the center message for January’s mini, I needed another quote at the bottom of the page so as not to waste the whole sheet. That led to this month’s message. 

 I believe the events of 2020 helped me to remember to be a little more patient, and kind when under stress.

 This little mini also stands as a reminder to be kind to bees. We owe a lot to our winged friends and they need to be supported. There has been a rapid decline in honeybee population due to the overuse of forever chemicals. Without these pollinators, there would be no food, so perhaps this year we could give them a helping hand. One of the easiest things we can do is to leave our dandelions on the lawn until they go by. These yellow beauties are often their earliest source of food in the Spring.

 Hope you all get some stitching time in this month and most of all, “Bee Happy!”

 I set this post on automatic pilot to post on Sunday. Since I'm going to be unplugged that day, I've rounded up all the usual suspects and linked to their home page, so you may have to scroll (and have a bit of fun) to find the mini. I'm happy to say there are a few new mini makers this month. What fun!

 I'll be back online on Monday so jump in if you like and be sure to let me know so I can link it into our mini post at the end of each month.

Quilting Babcia (Amity Quilter)

Frederique (Applique Patchwork Quilting)

Randy (Barrister’s Block)

Cathy (BigLake Quilter)

Cyndi (Busy Thimble)

Grace (City Mouse Quilter)

Barb (Funwith Barb)

Gladi (Gladi’s Quilts)

Shasta (High Road Quilter)

Julie (JulieK Quilts)

Kathy (Kathy’sQuilts)

Katy (KatyQuilts)

Sandy (MyMaterial Creations)

Angie (Quilting on the Crescent)

Barbara (Quilts,Gravestones and Elusive Ancestors)

Janet (RogueQuilts)

Kyle (TimelessReflections)

Cynthia (Wabi-SabiQuilts)


Friday, February 26, 2021

New England Quilt Museum


I am so honored to be sharing the walls (different galleries) of the New England Quilt Museum with the fabulous “Yellow and Orange” quilts from the Pilgrim Roy collection. Both exhibits will be up from March 3 through May 22 along with a few yellow and orange quilts from the museum's permanent collection. 

 When Pam (Pamela Weeks, Curator, NEQM) asked me to choose 20 quilts, I had no idea whose quilts would be gracing the other galleries. It seems fitting that these glorious antiques will be up at the same time as mine since yellow is my favorite color. 

 If you live in (or near) New England I hope you will be able to view these gems in person. NEQM has somewhat reduced hours and they are adhering to the CDC guidelines, so you may want to check their website (here) or call before venturing out. There is so much to see, you will be rewarded for your effort.

I’m hoping to get down on the first warm (o.k. relatively warm) Saturday to be able to meet for an outside lunch with a few friends.