Wednesday, October 7, 2015

The Kate Spain Christmas Charm Swap is done!

There is one other big thing that has happened here lately.
The Kate Spain Christmas Charm Swap has been completed.
Just look at all these gorgeous charms the participants received!
There were a number of packages that arrived late so sending these out got delayed a bit.  One package actually went MIA and never arrived at all.  The participants were willing to wait a little longer to see if it showed up (which it still hasn't to this day).  The person that sent them chose to purchase more fabrics and on my suggestion had them shipped directly to me.  Once I got them in my hands and cut them for her, all of the packages where quickly stuffed and sent on their way.
Even with the few problems there were getting this swap done, I'm so glad that I did it.  There is no other way I would have ever been able to get such a pretty variety of Kate's Christmas lines to turn into a holiday quilt for myself.
I thought I knew exactly what pattern I was going to use for my charms but I took it out recently and now am second guessing my decision.  I'm on the hunt for a new idea though I still might go back to my original plan. 

Thank you to all those who participated and thank you for your understanding during the delay.  I hope you love your charms and I can't wait to see what you create with them so please share when you do.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Castles on the Horizon sister quilts

The other day I was surprisingly shocked to learn that there is an Instagram group that has chosen to make my Castles on the Horizon quilt that I create for the Moda Bake Shop, though each person is using different fabrics.

To say that I was thrilled to learn about this is a huge understatement.
There are 15 or 16 IG friends in this group and they call themselves the Charmpions (so cute).

Some of the members of the group gave me permission to share pictures of their quilts in process with you.

Brooke IG: thequiltyox is creating this version.
My friend Celine IG: espritpatch, blog: Espritpatch has just finished adding the borders to quilt top.  She is using The Boathouse by Sweetwater and Modern Background Paper by Zen Chic, both by Moda.
Cindy aka IG: whiskysmum is well underway with her blocks.

This soft and low volume version is coming along nicely by Margaret IG: maggles67.
One member of the group has already finished and gifted her version.  This gorgeous creation is by Katrina IG:katrinahodgsen1969.
And my friend (and a good friend to many of you too) Lesley otherwise known as The Cuddle Quilter duplicated my quilt by using Horizon by Kate Spain also.  I love seeing it all washed in sunshine.
Lesley had her longarm quilter use a swirly pattern instead of the straight lines that I used.  I love this version too and it really give some great flow to the overall look.
Thank you, thank you ladies so much for liking my pattern and making your own version.  It truly makes me feel wonderful and gives me incentive to get to finished the other new patterns that I am working on.  Hopefully a new one will be available soon.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Spooktacular Mini Quilt Swap 15 sent

After some mailing snafus, my partner has received her package so now I can show you what I sent to her for the IG Spooktacular Halloween Mini Quilt Swap.
This is the sneak peak I had shared on IG while I was making the top.  The colors are off but hopefully she wasn't able too figure out what it was going to be.
As it turns out, Julie was also the person that I sent to for this swap.  I'm guessing that was by design by the swap organizer (much easier to keep track of I'm sure). I figured it out when I received the package Julie sent to me but she didn't know until my package to her arrived.  This is what I included in the package. 
 I have plans to make for me a full sized Swoon quilt so I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to try out the pattern for one block as it turns out 24" square and be able to showcase some fun fabrics at the same time.
For the quilting after much thought and auditions of design options, I chose to go with a simple but very effective squared spiral.
I'm really happy with the way it turned out.  I didn't mark it at all and just eyeballed it for spacing and as it turns out that I like that method better, for this piece at least, as it isn't 100% symmetrical and to me, it just adds to the charm.
I used a bright purple with spiders print for the backing and love the way the quilting shows on the back. And Dang Nabit! I realized when I uploaded the pics that in my hurry to mail it off, I forgot to add the label.  So very sorry Julie.  If you want you can add a pretty embroidered one yourself.
Although I had wanted to make her another small goodie to go with the mini quilt, I just didn't have time. But I did find some fun Halloween things to send to her.  Silly socks are always appropriate.
Since I love Halloween and could buy up all the decorations and cute goodies for me, it was tempting to keep these for myself.
I guess now I officially have a photo bomber.
I had a lot of fun making this mini quilt and really hope my schedule lightens up soon so that I can create some more.
So if you are wondering just why I've been MIA since the end of August (no blogging, no IG, practically no sewing, nada), other than the usual back to school craziness and my work schedule change that goes along with that this year, the main reason is because of Girl Scouts.  In the spring my GS council asked me to take on the volunteer job of Troop Organizer for my local area.  That means that I keep track of the girls who want to join a troop and get them placed into one or help organize a new one. This is huge for my service unit (local community) as we have 70+ troops and over 600 girls.  Our council serves girls in 15 counties and my SU is the biggest one of all.  The busy season typically runs mid August when school, and therefore scouting too, is getting ready to start back up through November though there will be a few new requests during the rest of the scouting year.

To say that it has been insanely busy so far is an understatement.  I knew this would be a big job but I didn't know just how big.  As of today, 76 girls have been placed and 6 new troops have been started.  There are currently 22 girls on the waiting list and 5 more troops in the process of getting going.  Because I believe in the power of Girl Scouts in building girls of courage, confidence and character who make the world a better place, although this position is taking a lot of my otherwise free time, I feel that it is worth it.

We have one more open house this coming week and I'm sure that will add more new names to the list to be placed.  One reason that I agreed to take this position is the fact that it isn't a year round job for the most part and trust me when I say that I'm looking forward to the down time.  I really want and need to get back to my sewing.  I finally got into my studio yesterday and am working on a different sort of baby gift for a friend and have started working on a quilt that has been on the frame way too long.  Hopefully I'll have it finished this weekend.

Whatever is going on in your life, I hope that it makes you happy.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Spooktacular Mini Swap 15 received

I can't believe that it has been over a month since I last posted here.
I don't think I've ever gone that long before.
I haven't shared because there hasn't been much  to show you. 
There have been only 2 quilt related things going on here lately, one being the really fun Spooktacular Halloween Mini Quilt Swap.
I received my package a number of weeks ago but haven't had time to take pics of all the goodies until now.

My partner was Julie, no blog but she's on IG @jpy0718
She hit is out of the park with the fabulous mini quilt that she made for me plus all the other little goodies that she included.
Here is what I received.
 Just look at this gorgeous Ghastlie mini quilt. I LOVE IT!!!!!!!!!
Julie had never heard of the Ghastlies before this swap and now I think she's hooked too.
Each area has some different quilting that really looks great.
 The back is so much fun and she even embroidered the label.  Very cool.
 She also embroidered for me this ghoulish hand towel.  Love it too.
Though I don't have nor want an embroidery machine, things like this make me think twice about one.
 Julie included a pretty note pad (one can never have too many of those) and a package of needles.
 And last but certainly not least is the sooooo cute little zipper pouch.  How many more times can I say I love it!!!!
Julie thank you, thank you so very much for being such a wonderful swap partner.  I truly adore all that you sent to me.  Receiving terrific swap packages like this one makes me truly wish that I had more time to participate in more swaps.  I can't wait to get the quilt hung in my studio where I can look at it all year round!

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Stunning Stitchin Sunday

It has been a while since I've done a Stunning Stitchin Sunday post. Just about a month exactly.
Life just has been too hectic and I got way behind in blog reading.
Happily I can report that I'm all caught up and so have some lovely stitching to share you today.  Yes some of the quilters' posts were from a few weeks ago but you may not have seen them and I don't want you to miss being able to enjoy all their pretty work.

Friday, August 28, 2015

My current wish list

I maintain a Wish List of quilty related items.
Do you?

When I see something online, whether it be a new tool to try out, a template or ruler that looks promising, a quilt pattern I just have to have or a fabric that is destined to join my stash, I save a picture of it in my Wish List folder.
A few times a year I peruse those images, namely when it is nearing my birthday, Christmas, Mother's Day or some other occasion when I know that I'll be getting goodies either for myself or from someone else.
Believe me when I say that hubby loves it when I'm able to provide him with a list of things that I really want.  It makes his shopping for gifts for me so much easier and he has learned my quilty tastes over the years, so much that now he usually picks out some fun things for me that are not on the list.
My birthday is on the horizon, despite what my Facebook page says.  No I was not born in January but I don't like to put that real information out on the web for all to see.
There is way too much hacking and identity stuff going on these days.
Let's just say that my birthday is in the early Fall. Those close to me know the read date.
Anywho...this morning I took a look at what pictures I have saved and I decided to share with you what I'm hoping to have soon.
Have you heard about the Moda Match maker yet?
This is so cool and I really want one.
It has a 2 1/2" x 5' swatch of every single Bella solid which are removable so you can work with them however you want to. In addition they are backed with white card stock with the stock numbers so you can easily keep track of which is which.  I got sticker shock at the price so I'm hoping that some shops will put it on sale at some point once they are available.

I have some new books on my wish list including:
I love Irish Chain quilts and with the peaks Melissa has shared on her blog of the quilts in this, I'm sure that it is a must have for my bookshelf.
I just read about this new book yesterday morning and it looks promising.
I have a few FQ bundles that I have yet to figure out what to do with and so I'm very interested in checking this new book out.
Last on my current book list is this one from Jessica Schick.
Though my longarm machine doesn't have a computer attached, I could print out the designs on paper at hub's office and use them like pantographs.  I hope to get a peak inside this book soon.
So you are probably wondering about the fabric lines on my wish list.
Of course there are a few and I'll be happy to show you what has caught my eye.
First up is Spring Bloom by Amanda Caronia for Windham Fabrics.
I love the bright colors of this line (No surprise there, right?) and the prints are pretty.
It came out in April so I can still get my hands on it.  Now to decide how much to buy.
Next up is this Grape bundle of Michael Miller's Fiesta.
In looking to find a pretty picture of this to show you, I saw that Southern Fabric has the FQ bundle on sale so it immediately went into my cart and is now on its way.  Happy early Birthday to me!
Of course, Kate Spain's newest line Canyon is on my Wish List.
I'm working on a cool pattern for not 1 but 2 quilts made with one jelly roll plus some other fabrics and hope to be able to create them with this fabric line.  I think you are going to love them.
And that is it my friends.  Usually when quilt market reports start being posted, I end up with a lot of pictures in my Wish List folder of goodies I want to own but over the past 2 markets, I just haven't seen much that I've been excited about.
Now don't get me wrong, there are some lovely fabric lines that have recently come out or are due to come out soon, but since I'm only purchasing fabrics that make me shout "Oh Wow" when I see it, I haven't had that reaction to many new lines over the past year or so. 
There are certain designers that many people just love who I will refrain to name (so as to not get blasted by the lovers of those designers)  but other than a few select prints from those designers, they just aren't my cup of tea. And anything with critters on it, being deer, raccoons, foxes, octopus, unicorns, whatever....forget it.  Unless I'm making a gift for someone that has a love of a particular creature, I'm not buying any of it.
I've found over the last couple of years, as I've tried to trim down my fabric purchases so that I can concentrate more on using the pretty ones that I already own and keep some money in my wallet at the same time, that my tastes have narrowed and I don't need to own every fabric line out there.  By only focusing on the ones that knock my socks off, I'm much happier when they are finally in my hands and I'm excited to play with them.
There will always be more new fabric lines coming out and I for one am not going to give into the philosophy that whomever has the biggest stash wins.  I'm not out to win any contest.  I just want to make things that make me happy.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015


This is how my Lucy has been for the last month, all covered up and bored to tears.
I have not been able to sew a stitch since this time last month.  After getting back from vacation and our China travel group reunion, I was home a whole of 2 days and that was consumed with unpacking, laundry and repacking.  Then we were off again as Sunshine and I spent 3 days at Girl Scout Cookie Camp which is for girls that sold at least 500 boxes of cookies.  We were in the lodge with all the 1st, 2nd and 3rd grade girls. It was a ton of fun but when I got home I was completely exhausted.
 This is the project that I was last working on.  It will be a baby quilt for my newest grand niece.
This bin fill of Halloween goodies is waiting for me to dig into it and start creating my City Sampler blocks.  I'm planning on doing some of that on Friday when I'm off from work.
This quick panel quilt is draped over the frame waiting to be quilted (another quilt is loaded underneath it).  I'm anxious to see the response from the future recipient of this so I wanted get it done and gifted very soon.
This is also waiting to be quilted.  Sorry about the sneak peak but it is for an Instagram swap and I don't want my partner to see the entire thing until it is in her hands.
There have been some bright spots though lately.  I picked up my new wheels 2 days before we left on vacation so now I finally get to drive her a bit more.  I love it. It has been 10 years since I've had a new vehicle.
I'm outfitting her properly including adding these kick mats so the kidlets don't make a mess of the back of the seats (they have a better strap system on the bottom than many others and they are bigger) and seat protectors under their car seats.  I want to keep my new baby as pretty as possible for as long as I can.
I also added a little fun bling to the back window.
I'm still on the hunt for the perfect license plate frame, the Weather Tech liners just arrived at hub's office this morning and a great handmade holder for the tissue box is on its way which I will show you when it arrives.  You'll like it, I promise.
Some fabric goodness has passed through the front door recently too. A lot of parcels have been showing up at my house for the Kate Spain Christmas Charm Swap but I never expected this surprise package that came last week.  My good friend Katie of Karma Willow Designs sent them to me just because.  I feel very spoiled and thanks so much Katie.
The big pile of green felt is for a Girl Scout-y project for my troop members and while I was at that store, I spotted a few more interesting Halloween prints to add to my City Sampler bin plus I grabbed another spool of clear thread because I know that a lot more Girl Scout patch sewing is in my future.
This big bin is stocked full of packages containing the Kate Spain Christmas charms and the sorting will be starting tomorrow afternoon.  I'm still waiting on a few stragglers to arrive and then they all will be on their way to their new homes.
 So hopefully life will get back to normal and I'll be able to make some progress on my projects.  My work schedule is changing when the new school year starts so I'll be home earlier every day and I should be able to get more things done.