Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Signature Block Swap

I received my Signature Block Swap swap-out on Saturday:

I think all of the participants did a fabulous job on their blocks. Initially, we had ten people sign up for the swap but one person didn't complete her obligation so I only have nine blocks. I'll have to play around with the layout to see what I'm going to do with them.

What are you working on?

Monday, April 26, 2010

Join Me For Some Eye Candy?

I spent all day Saturday visiting with a group of friends while sewing, laughing, eating, and laughing some more. There is nothing better than spending the day with friends.

Each month we have a potluck based on a theme of which I'm the coordinator of. This month I chose a theme based on the movie Steel Magnolias and the character's band of friendship. We had Po'k and Beans, Potato Salad, Biscuits and Gravy, Deviled Eggs, Iced Tea, Cookies, Ham and/or Roast Beef Sandwiches, and BBQ Smokies and Meatballs. Yummo!

Aside from the laughs and food that we all share, one of my favorite events at our sew-ins is show 'n tell. Who can walk away from eye candy?

This quilt was made by my friend Diane while participating in a mystery challenge and quilted by my friend Jo Ann's husband Larry. It is made from gorgeous Batiks and the feathers Larry quilted really showcase the quilt's design. Spectacular quilt!

This was created by my friend Joy. She does some of the best appliqued quilts I've seen. I know many quilters who have cats and I'm sure each of them can relate to the four cats depicted in this quilt. LOL

Here is another quilt created by Joy. If I remember correctly, she made it for a local library and the one above is a duplicate of what she gave to the library. I just love the alligator dancing on top of the books while playing the saxophone. If you look closely, you can see the ladybugs crawling along the vine around the alligator. Precious!

While we were at the sew-in, Joy was working on this clock. It is part of a Baltimore Album quilt she's working on. Isn't her work beautiful?

My friend Vicki makes a lot of humanitarian quilts and does beautiful work. She is also an expert at applique. This quilt pattern is called Yellow Brick Road and is very popular among quilters who donate their quilts. I love the bright fabrics Vicki used.

Here is another humanitarian quilt assembled by Vicki using the Yellow Brick Road pattern but with different fabrics. This would make a cute baby quilt, don't you think?

Vicki made this quilt in celebration of our annual Tulip Festival. She did a great job creating a scene of our tulips fields during the festival.

Here is another quilt created by Vicki. I love this wall hanging. A couple of us tried to convince her to donate this to us, but she wasn't falling for it.

One of our group challenges this year is a Round Robin challenge based on a Christmas Carol. The challenge was set for 6 months where each month we are given a set of instructions and we all carry out those instructions by working on our own quilts. Unfortunately, due to circumstances beyond my control, I am behind on my challenge quilt and am only on challenge one...

This one is Daisy's Round Robin challenge. The first part of our challenge was to create a 22 1/2" block based on a Christmas Carol. Daisy chose Let It Snow, Let It Snow. The second challenge was to add a 2 1/2" border, followed by the third challenge of setting the block on point by adding corners. Our fourth challenge was to add a 4 1/2" pieced border (if I remember correctly), and the fifth challenge is to set the block on point again by adding corners. Our sixth challenge is to add a 6 1/2" border.

Here is a close-up of Daisy's initial block and pieced border. I think she has done a fantastic job.

This one is my friend's Jo's Round Robin Challenge. Hers is based on the Christmas Carol 'Twas The Night Before Christmas.

Jo did a lot of beautiful embellishments on her challenge quilt. Unfortunately, the picture doesn't really showcase it. Jo is another one who's applique skills are what I term as expert.

I had to take a close-up of her border to showcase her beautiful work. She chose a real creative way to continue her Christmas Carol theme into the outer borders by adding additional applique.

Not bad for a Saturday afternoon... What did you do?

Friday, April 23, 2010

I've Been Busy...

My week has been busy trying finish up my signature blocks while preparing for a sew-in on Saturday. Initially I thought I'd finish the signature blocks on Tuesday but that didn't happen.

On Tuesday I discovered it isn't a good idea to plug in two irons at the same time and on the same circut. Even if one of the irons is a small one. So I blew a breaker and couldn't find which one needed to be reset. After flipping all of the breakers off and on for about an hour I finally gave up. I had lost all of the power in my sewing studio. It wasn't until an hour or so later that I remembered we have a second electrical box. It's hidden in a different area of the house and was installed during some construction on our house. My sewing studio is wired into this electrical box and I was able to find the flipped switch as soon as I opened the box. Well, now I have power but it's late in the afternoon and I no longer felt like sewing.

The last couple of blocks went together rather quickly...

Except for one hiccup. Because I was making a couple of variations of the block, I had multiple prints per piece and I guess I wasn't paying attention and was stitching two different prints for the heart section of the block.

Here are my three versions of the block. I'm not sure what my favorite one is, but I'm a little partial to the upper left corner one with the soft pink as the background. I really fell in love with the pink/red/floral print and had to go back to the quilt shop and purchase an additional 5 yards of it. I'm not sure what I'm going to use it for, but I have it for when I do.

Here are all my completed and signed blocks. I can't wait to see what everyone else has done. Our swap out is on Saturday during our sew-in so I should have a picture to show you next week.

With my signature blocks completed, I had to run to the quilt shop to pick out two green fat quarters for our drawing on Saturday....

As you can see, I have no self-control. I found the two green fat quarters, as well as five more fat quarters and four yards of a couple of other prints. Love them brights.

I've already been cutting and assembling... (these two prints are from my resources)

Into vibrant Jake's Heart blocks.

As my contribution in a comfort quilt for a friend who is having surgery. Oooh, I really love those brights!

So what's on your work table?

Monday, April 19, 2010

My Weekend Progress...

I spent many hours in my sewing studio this weekend working on my Signature Swap blocks. For the most part, they went together rather quickly and without too much drama.

Last week I cut all my fabric pieces to size and sorted them according to the piece numbers and whether it was for the heart, background, or signature. If you've seen my tutorial on How To Paper Piece, you know I prefer to store my cut fabric in ziploc bags with the number of pattern piece and it's dimensions written onto the baggie. This way of organizing may not work for everyone, but it works extremely well for me. I'm one of those fanatics who hates to look for things... It breaks the rhythm!

Here is one version of my block, minus my signature. The Signature block pattern creates a 6" finished block and it is taking me about 20 minutes per block as long as I don't have any interruptions. So why am I taking so long to finish them you ask? Well, between the telephone calls, laundry, and husband, I'm lucky if I can get three pieces assembled before I'm interrupted. LOL

I'm hoping to have them completed this afternoon so I can move on to my next project on my To Do List... 

So what are you working on?

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

What I'm Working On...

I spent today preparing my fabric to begin working on my Signature Swap blocks. I have almost all of the pieces cut so I can start paper piecing. It should go quickly, but we'll see.

Unfortunately, I don't have any pictures to share with you since I didn't do any sewing today. So, I'll leave you with this...

The true meaning of friendship. I hope you're getting lots of sewing / quilting done. I'd love to hear what you're working on.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Giveaway Winner...

And the winner of my first giveaway is:

Susan, author of Hanging On By A Needle and A Thread blog.

Congratulations Susan! Send me your snail mail address ( so I can get your package in the mail.

Thank you to everyone who entered. I'll be having another giveaway soon.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Birthday Swap - Block 2

I made the second block for my Birthday Swap group and have another one in the making for the month of April.

This one was made for my friend Judi. She requested a block of a flower in a size that is divisible by 3. I selected the above block that measures 3" x 6". It's a paper pieced block I found on Piece by Number site. I was not thrilled with the block and how the two sections joined together. I had to resew the joining seam a couple of times and this is the best I could get the stem and the flower to match. Of course, the most important thing is that Judi liked it and she did.

If you haven't already signed up for my giveaway, please do so. I will be selecting the winner Monday. To sign up, see last Monday's  post.

What are you working on?

Monday, April 5, 2010

100th Post Giveaway!

It'd hard to believe that this is my 100th post. When I first began my blog I wasn't confident I would have enough to say to attract any followers. However, through this blog I have met many other bloggers and blog followers who share many of the same interests and ideas as I. To celebrate this milestone I am hosting my first giveaway.

To enter this giveaway, become a follower and leave a comment. If you're already a follower, simply leave a comment and I'll add your name for the giveaway. The winner will be announced next Monday.

Good luck!