Monday, March 31, 2014

What a week!

The last 8 days have been crazy busy! I have been to 2 quilt shows, visited Bryce Thompson Arboretum, prepared and taught a scrappy class for our park guild (including making 19 kits, and sample blocks in various stages), spent a 14 hour day quilting with our guild and then with my sister Barb. We were invited out two evenings for supper, went to a concert of Il Divo. I also finished my Schnibbles, HOOK, and packed everything up in ready for our journey home. Oh yeah and somewhere along the way I picked up a honey of a cold!
By far the hardest thing was finishing HOOK!

If you read the back cover of Carrie's pattern she says," trust me! It isn't nearly as complicated as it might appear."
Well that's true, I wouldn't say it was complicated, but only because Carrie has done all the "figurin'. It always amazes me how she comes up with the math to turn 5" charms into such patterns.

But if you read on, she says,"the biggest challenge is picking fabric. Once you've got your fabric,it's just a little strip piecing and then some cutting of triangles. Those triangles are sewn together to make rows, a few edges are straightened and borders added, And then it's done." 
I know a 60degree ruler would have made things easier but I didn't think I would make use of it afterwards so I opted to use the 60 degree lines on my rulers. This probably slowed things a bit, but I found this to a very labour intensive project. All the cutting, pressing seams open is much more time consuming, and all the piecing!
Oh dear! It looks good but all I can say, is this...I WOULD RATHER GIVE BIRTH THAN MAKE ANOTHER ONE!

Have a look...

It will not get quilted until we get back home, but Sue on the other hand got her Hook completely finished

She even made a couple matching candle mats! I'm sure you recognize the fabric. It is Countdown to Christmas. I have lost track of how many projects she has made with this fabric line but I know it is more than one! Well done Sue!

I'm curious to see how many entries in this months parade... Be sure to check Sherry and Sinta's blogs on parade day.   and

FOR SALE: 1 Schnibbles Hook pattern, only used once. (Not likely to be used again!)lol

Sorry Carrie, your pattern is great but apparently my piecing skills are not equal to the task, or my patience has grown thin, or maybe, one HOOK per household is all that's needed, but whatever the reason, I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that this is my one and only HOOK!

Sunday, March 23, 2014


PpEIGHT days until we pack up and start the next leg of the journey.

 Just a few more adventures before we get home.

EIGHT days to the Schnibbles deadline if I am to make the parade. I will need to be finished and have my entry into the parade organizers before heading out.

This is a labour intensive project complicated by a left hand that doesnt work as well as I would like it to.

EIGHT weeks since messing up my finger. Yes.  I am making headway...I have just over 60 degrees of mobility, but still much swelling and stiffness and pain, still strapped for comfort and protection. I am not a patient patient. I want it to be well yesterday! Enough whining...

I went to a quilt show today. This has to be the quilt show capital of Arizona. Every weekend and some weekend there are three or four. It keeps a gal busy!

EIGHT quilts for you to enjoy. The last one was stunning! The quilter had no pattern but was inspired by her travels in Africa and India to make this masterpiece. It really was very dramatic.

All applique and small touches of beading.

EIGHT days until the next quilt show. A big one! A very big one! I promise to share some pictures.

EIGHT more months till we return! We have been searching all month for accommodations for next year. Finally succeeded this week!
We found a spacious unit, with lots of storage and oodles of space to set up my sewing area, and the price was right. We will be back in the same park so I can carry on where I left off with the quilting group here; and with any luck maybe a stain glass project or two.

Did you happen to notice how many times the word EIGHT appears in this post?

Monday, March 17, 2014

A Promise is a Promise

Not too much sewing going on here today except for some hand stitching. I sewed down the binding on the Family table runner, 
Sewed on buttons and tacked down bindings

I did get to another quilt show today and as enjoyable as all theses quilt shows are, they do tend to cause problems. I see things I want to make and my "want to make" list gets grows faster than I can whittle it down. I am really going to have to be more efficient with my time!
Lets take a look at some of the quilts from the various shows shall we...

Something I had never seen was a "Bed Turning". This bed was covered with 17 quilts of all sizes and colours. As each one was turned the story was read on the whys and wherefores of how it came to be.
Here are a few of them.

This Cathedral Windows quilt was almost 20 years in the making and was quite spectacular in real life.
There were quite a few Grandmother's Flower Garden Quilts as well.

This is just a small sampling of the bed turning quilts; all in all it was a very well made bed!

One of several quilts of valor on display.

More and more I find myself being drawn to New York Beauty type quilts, so much so that I have ordered this pdf block pattern from Craftsy.

This show had a wonderful sampling of new and old, modern and traditional, large and small projects.
Something for everyone!

Nothing is pleasant that is not spiced with variety.

Francis Bacon

Sunday, March 16, 2014

No Excuses

I really can't think why it has taken me so long to get back to blogging. I like writing, I like sharing my quilting escapades, and photos AND I really like it when my readers take time to comment, so I'm not sure why I'm so sporadic at it.
We received our internet a week ago Tuesday. It seems to have taken me a little while to get settled in our new "home". I have been to see the pecialist about my finger. The good news is, that I do not need surgery..the bad news is, it may take many many more months to heal. The bone is healing, but the tendon at the side of the knuckle where the bone broke, is "shredded" according to the Dr. There apparently is damage to other tendons on the outside and inside of the finger, as well. The insurance has paid for Dr. Appointments but will not pay for physio, so I am on my own in that dept. I have gone for two sessions and learned what regime I have to follow. At the time of my appointment I had 22% movement of the finger. I have been exercising it and stretching, and heating and wrapping etc. And a week later I have progressed to 42% movement. I seem to be at a bit of a standstill now, and I am beginning to believe that it is going to be a long road to complete recovery.

These are some of the instruments of torture that have become part of my daily regime. It all looks pretty innocent, but don't be fooled. I have recycled a cloth bag that once housed a little quilt kit to become a microwave heat bag. It has become a big help in the stretching exercises. The rest of the items cause a considerable amount of pain while being used. I see the Dr. again in a week or so to check my progress. Wish me luck!
Mr. O has been away this week for a few days. He drove back to the Grand Canyon for a solo adventure. He hiked to the bottom of the canyon, slept bunkhouse style, at the Ranch on the bottom of the canyon by the Colorado River an the next morning hiked back up. The route to the top was over 12 miles. OVER SIX HOURS OF CLIMBING! ( I am told that that is a little quicker than the average climber)
He called me to let me know, he had finished and was at the top. When I asked how it was, Mr O's answer to me was, " they don't call it the Grand Canyon for nothing". He did a lot of reading, researching, and prepping for it and I'm glad it went off without a hitch. Anorher thing off the old bucket list. Way to go Mr. O!
While he was hiking I was quilting.

I have been working on this months Schnibble. It is Hook. I really can't say I was "hooked" on the pattern, but this is not the first Schnibbles I was not thoroughly smitten with, and when finished, I was pleasantly surprised to find out I had learned to love it. The designer suggests using a 60% ruler for the cutting, but because I didn't care too much for it, I thought I might never use the ruler again, so I have opted to use the 60 % lines on my 4" square ruler. There is a lot of cutting, piecing, cutting again, more sewing, all of which is a little difficult with fingers that look like this

I will persevere though. Like it or not, I am learning different skills and that is a good thing. 

Ok, this is some of my progress so far

After sewing this many hooks together, I started rethinking things and I am not sure I like the way they are assembled, so today I got out my trusty ripper and I am thinking I may assemble them in a more scrappy manner. I'm sure you must me getting tired of seeing this same colour scheme, but the bulk of the fabric I brought me was for my grand daughter's circle quilt and the black and tans for my  Over The River and Through The Woods quilt.

What do you think? Which way do you think they look best. All one fabric choice for each hook or mixed up like the one above? I would love some feed back.

While Mr. O was away my sister came over with her fabric and machine and we had a sleepover and sewed and talked and ate and laughed and had a wonderful time. Barb worked on her Schnibbles as well. I am really cherishing these days together. It won't be long before we each go our different directions to our homes and I am not sure when we will see each other again.

What else have I been working on? Well I'm glad you asked!

I finally got around to making the Schnibbles I had not been able to do last Sept. 
Carrie ( the designer) calls this pattern, Mercerie. It has another border of the background fabric in the original pattern but I have decided that I want it to finish a little smaller without borders, so it needs to be sandwiched and quilted and I will call it Done!
It was made with 2 French General charm packs, La Petit Ecole.

On to the next project. A very long table runner destined to be a gift for a friend. Pattern is called Family Table Runner by Cottage Creek Quilts.

I own a few of this company's patterns and love them all. You might like them too...

All pieced and waiting to be quilted....

Quilting all done. Binding is on and will be hand stitched tomorrow. I reall like this one and can see a few more of these in my future.

Remember that blue bag amongst the "instruments of torture"? Well before it was recycled to hold a couple pounds of rice for a microwave heating pad, it held a cute little project gifted to me by a very thoughtful friend. She knew I was wanting to have some projects to work on while away so she put everything together to make a cute winter project in case I might be missing the snow and colder temps. Thanks Sue!

This is what it grew up to be.

I embroidered the snowman as per the pattern, then pieced everything together on Thursday. Today I sandwiched it, quilted it and attached the binding. Another hand project for tomorrow! 
Tonight while Facetiming with my daughter, I showed it to her and she could have sworn she saw her name on it down in the it looks like I will be making multiples of this little gem too.

Today was International Quilting Day, and I think I did my part. I quilted and bound a tablerunner a small wall hanging, finished two tea wallets

And started prepping for a day workshop I am presenting at our quilting meeting on the 26th of this month. Happy Quilting Day y'all!
I attended 3 quilt shows last week and one more tomorrow.
Next post I will share a few pics from those.
Our winter in Arizona is winding down. Just a little better than 2 weeks and we will be on the road again. I should be home in approximately one month, so I hope there is a severe change in the weather between now and then because I really don't want to pack away my sandals. 
It is twenty five to two! Good grief, I have to get to bed! I have things to do tomorrow. I'll meet you back here tomorrow night...I promise!

Keep every promise you make and only make promises you can keep.

Anthony Hitt

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