Sunday, January 31, 2016

There's an App for that!

I just downloaded this new free motion quilting idea app produced by C&T Publishing (there is a companion book and sampler pattern that goes with it that I have not purchased, at least not yet.)  I was intrigued by the app though because it has free motion design tutorials, a video library with videos teaching different stitches, and links to bonus video materials on YouTube.   The app only cost $2.99 and I think it will be really helpful.  My only "complaint" if you can call it that, is the camera angle.  The shots over her shoulder show much better what she is doing than the shots taken off to the side.  Overall very helpful though and well done - definitely worth the $2.99.  Now besides digging through a mountain of books for FMQ ideas, I can watch some videos on my iPad and off I go!

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Don't Forget the Triangles!

Still working on Dear Jane!  I got quite a few done this weekend.

Here is one of the triangles that was paper pieced and contains 33 pieces.  Thank heavens for paper piecing.  I don't know how Jane Stickle did these blocks in 1863....

This was was also paper pieced and contains 17 pieces.

Friday, January 29, 2016

Happy Birthday Jessie!!

OK, so I'm a day late - I don't know what I was thinking!  Yesterday, this beautiful girl who happens to be married to my lucky son had a birthday!  I hope she had a fantastic day! She said she didn't know what Jeff had planned and I haven't heard what they did but I'm sure it was fun :)

Jeff said last weekend they went to a museum that had a bunch of "old" toys on display.  It sounds like they had a great time looking at all of the "old" toys because they were toys that they used to play with as kids!  He said, "Yes, the toys I used to play with are now in a museum...." All I can say to that is, "Join the club!"

Now, upstairs I go to work on some Dear Jane blocks!

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Craft Day

My daughter went to a craft day with friends and made this cute menu board!  There is a clothes pin for each day of the week to clip your recipes onto, and the yellow boxes are to rotate your recipes through so you don't get stuck in a rut and make the same things over and over. Clever idea and very cute!

I saw on The Quilt Show Daily Blog a link to 35 Clever Projects from OLD DENIM JEANS.  Some very cute ideas here - check them out!

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Getting Back to Work

Well I'm back from my little vacation and getting back to work, literally.  Today I did loads of laundry, shopped for food and tried to catch up on my work from my job.  It was worth it though, fun trip!
Here are some Dear Jane blocks I made last week:

Walter's Place - 29 pieces
Foundation Paper Pieced

Nan's Naiad - 39 pieces
Foundation Paper Pieced

Caitlin's Rose - 21 pieces
Partially machine pieced, partially paper pieced

I hope to get some time in the sewing room tomorrow!  Back to Dear Jane!

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Happy Birthday Mom!!

Today is my Mom's 81st birthday!  I was lucky enough to get to go visit this weekend.  Check out our four generation picture.
Today a woman asked me if I've always been close to my Mom and I said yes and she asked if I'm close to my Dad too and I said yes.  She said, "I did not have a family like that, you are really lucky."  I would have to agree that yes I am very blessed and lucky to have two such wonderful parents - and very grateful!
Happy Birthday Mom!!

Monday, January 25, 2016

Happy Birthday Megan!!

Happy Birthday to Megan!  I got to spend time with both of these lovely ladies today!
Fun, fun, fun!!

Sunday, January 24, 2016

A Grand Opening!

I mentioned before a wonderful quilt store in Logan, UT called My Girlfriends.  Well, they just opened one in Midway, UT not far from my parents' house.  Since I am visiting this weekend I decided to go to the grand opening which was yesterday!

The place was PACKED!  I thought I had come a long way from Colorado, but there were people who had driven from Shelley, Idaho which is almost as far.

There were a LOT of husbands there.  Apparently they are well known for taking good care of the husbands while their wives shop.  They had comfy couches and a hot chocolate bar.  The men looked like they were having just as good a time as their wives.

Yes, that is my hot chocolate and cupcake sitting by the welcome sign :)

I took a few pictures upstairs (downstairs was way too crowded).  Their wool section is upstairs, plus a classroom and they are going to have a longarm quilting machine up there for rent soon.

A beautiful new shop and a wonderful grand opening.  I bought a few fabrics for a class I'm taking in March!  It will be a fun shop to visit when I come see my parents :)

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Look Up!

There is beautiful art and design everywhere, even up above us! Yesterday I met my daughter at the Joseph Smith Memorial Building in downtown Salt Lake City.  As I was sitting and waiting for her I looked up and noticed the beautiful stained glass ceiling - not to mention the chandelier! If I hadn't had a chance to sit down and wait for a minute,  I might have missed it!

While she attended a work meeting, the baby and I went to an interactive exhibit at the Family Search center, where I learned the meaning of my name (there are over 811,000 other Karens in the United States) and saw on a large world map where my ancestors came from (you could click on each one and learn more about them), as well as went into a time machine that showed me what their homes may have been like during their lives. Very fun!  I highly recommend it if you're in the area.

It is also the Sundance Film Festival this week in Park City.  I haven't run into any movie stars yet, but I'm looking!

Friday, January 22, 2016

Two Easier Blocks

 These two weren't too difficult...

Town Square - 17 pieces
Machine Pieced

Box Kite - 15 pieces
Machine Pieced

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Two More! And a Cutie!

Two more Dear Jane blocks!

St. George's Cross - 21 pieces
Machine Pieced

Chattanooga Charlie - 22 pieces
Machine Pieced

My cute little granddaughter is now 3 months old!  Doesn't she have the cutest smile?  :)

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

On A Roll!

Here are a couple more Dear Jane blocks that I finished this week!

Stephanie's Snowflake - 41 pieces
Machine Pieced

Reflections Abound - 25 pieces
Machine Pieced

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

The Maze of Madness

I have had a couple of people ask me why I'm "avoiding Jane" and why I don't just quit doing it.  Well, I'm not sure why I've been avoiding it, probably because some of the blocks are hard and challenging and I was in the "easy" mood.  But I really do want to finish it.  I have invested a lot of time in it and out of 225 blocks I only have about 20 more to make!  How could I not finish it?
And now that I've been working on it this week, I am quite excited about it again - especially now that the "end is in sight!"

I ended up having to make the center part of this block twice. I am using some instructions that I bought from Sarah K. Francis, which have been SO helpful. In the instructions for this block she said she pieced it, but would recommend paper piecing it.

I should have listened!  I tried piecing it and came up with the wonky version on top.  My paper pieced version looks better, but still not perfect! Paper piecing usually yields perfect results but this one was definitely a challenge.

Maze of Madness - 47 pieces!!  I'm on a roll now Jane!!

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Avoiding Jane....

I have to admit, I have been avoiding working on my Dear Jane quilt.  I'm not sure why because I really do want to finish it, but every time I think I'm going to have a chance to work on it, I choose to work on something else!  Why do I do that?  Do I subconsciously not want to finish this quilt I have been working on for the better part of ten years? For example, when I could have been working on DJ blocks I chose to make 28 half-size Moda Shuffle Sample blocks. (Pictured here is the final choice of background fabric and the setting in the table runner.)
The good news is, these three inch blocks gave me a lot of miniature piecing practice so I am now ready to tackle DJ again.  Those 4 1/2 inch DJ blocks look positively gigantic compared to these Moda blocks.  So, this week when I was tempted to start a Downton Abbey quilt with all of my lovely Downton Abbey fabric (because I am watching the 6th and final season after all), I instead pulled out my DJ notebook and began working on row "L" - the second to the last row of blocks.  I may finish this in 2016 after all!  I really hope so....

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Sew 'N Flip

 Do you ever cringe, as I do, when the pattern instructions say, "Draw a diagonal line on the wrong side of 42 of your two inch squares...."

Then you have to get our your pencil and your ruler and sit there and draw line after line, OR try to "eyeball it" and sew it without the line and hope it's not too crooked...

Well I learned a tip from Jenny Doan (Missouri Star Quilt Company videos) to just press a crease in the square and sew on the crease for the Sew 'N Flip method.  SO much easier!

I tried it while working on my January Plain and Fancy block and it not only made piecing easier and more accurate (than eyeballing anyway...), it made the pressing easier because the square has already been pressed in the direction it's going to be eventually pressed anyway! So voila! Pressing the seam was a breeze!

Here is the finished block for January!

I love this tip - it works so well!

Friday, January 15, 2016

Moda Sampler Shuffle Blocks - Done!

I finished 28 of the 30 Moda Sampler Shuffle blocks.  I decided not to make the two appliqué blocks because they just didn't seem to "fit in" with 28 pieced blocks!  Ah well.

Here are the five I just finished....

I am going to make a table runner, so I started laying them out on various fabrics to see what kind of background fabric I wanted to use.

Any opinions??

Please comment below if you have an opinion on background fabric!

I'll post a picture of the table runner when I get it finished :)

Thursday, January 14, 2016

I Did Accomplish Something!

First of all - best sweet potato fries ever at Zack's BBQ in Hotchkiss - just saying'....

Secondly - I ran across this list I had made of projects I wanted to accomplish last year.  I was able to cross off, as completed, all but three items!  Not bad!  I put those three items on a new list, and added a few more for 2016 :)

And last but not least - I actually did work on a little something over the holidays.  This small Brazilian Embroidery project.  Seven more to go and I will be making a small quilt with these!

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Check This Out!

Here are three quilting related stories that I found interesting and you might too!

This article tells us that there is now scientific proof that quilting is good for you!  Something we quilters have known all along :)

This is rather a gruesome tale of Old Joe the Quilter from Northumberland England - but very interesting!

This is a sweet story of two Wyoming sisters in their 80's who've just finished their 1000th donation quilt!  Way to go ladies!

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

The Church of Art

We happened upon this "Church of Art" in Hotchkiss across the street from where the quilters meet.
My husband struck up a conversation with the owner who moved from California and was looking to buy an art studio/gallery and this church was available!

He was intrigued by the "Zentangle" tree painted on the side of the building.  She said she paid a high school student $50 to paint that for her.  I was also intrigued by her car which is covered in art.

This mural is painted on the back of the building. A very interesting and unique art gallery/studio!

Monday, January 11, 2016

Zen Doodling

Pictured here are several samples of the Zen Doodling that took place at the S&B Quilt group in Hotchkiss on Saturday!

I really appreciate those who dug right in and gave it a try.  Fabulous results!

This was a sample brought by one of the members from a class she took at the quilt store in Montrose :)

I like the way this woman added some red in her doodling - it really pops out!

I hope everyone had a good time - I know I did!  I feel inspired to do some doodling myself :)