Wednesday, October 31, 2007


It's Halloween night and the kids are coming to the door fast and furious. They range in age from 2 to 13. I love the little ones, they have no clue and are toooooo cute.

So this will be short, just a few pictures.
Some cards from Joyce in Colorado. The under the sea swap, and the crazy patchwork swap.

Nice, huh?

And then some blocks for me, from Shelby in Ohio and Mikol in Utah. Oh, excuse me, there's a knock on the door again.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Christmas Postcards

I was going to go on another little rant about flat seams. I hate when people make blocks and the seams go every which way. But I'm not gonna go there tonight. It's far too windy out, which is creeping me out. If I rant about twisted seams it will make my mood worse than it already is.

Sooooooo, I'm going to change the subject. I am going to take a note from Kate and ask if anyone is interested in a private, one on one, Christmas Postcard swap. If you are you can email me privately and send me you address and I'll send you mine.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

13 & 14

There's a reason why they don't have a 13th floor on high rise buildings. 13 is just a bad number. I have not had any problem with the blocks I have made so far. But 13........ well, I suddenly got stupid. I had made this block before with no problem. The flying geese needed to be 6 inches across by 3 inches. So that's what I cut. Everyone knows you have to add a half an inch DUH! I guess I can blame it on Lauren because it was a difficult fabric, not your usual Christmas stuff. The colors that coordinated were brights but not red and green. I had to discard the wrong size pieces and substitute something else. I sure hope she likes it.

14 was easy as I had made this block before and it has traditional Christmas fabrics. It will be on it's way to Susan in Texas.
The rules of this swap say that you have to have all the fabric mailed by November 1 and at least half the blocks completed by Thanksgiving. With only 5 more blocks to go, I would say barring any major catastrophes, that's going to be a piece of cake.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Some more old quilts

In 1997 I won a raffle of black and white fabrics at a quilt guild meeting. I made this Bear's Paw quilt with the intention of selling it. It is hand quilted and measures 84 x 101. It is now 10 years later and it still hasn't sold.

It was Christmas of 1996 when several people gave me fabrics for Christmas. Oddly, they were all similar in color and all went together well. I made this quilt using Margaret Miller's stripes that sizzle method. It is not that obvious in the photo but it has alot of hand quilting on it. It was entered in the 1997 Broward Quilt Expo and took a second place ribbon in the small pieced quilt division. My son then confiscated it for his then new house and I haven't seen it since. It needed a name, so I called it Christmas Presents.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Block #12 and incoming

Another block goes in tomorrow's mail. This is another pretty fabric which looks to me like it might be a Hoffman (my favorite). This block is for Patti in Kentucky.

If you think you have seen this block before, well, you have. I kinda like it.

I have received two more blocks making it a total of 4. The one on the left is from Donna and the one on the right is from Liz.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


I have received two really cool postcards. The first one is from Brigette all the way from France. This was part of the Under the Sea swap. The post office got a bit of a smudge on it but that sort of adds to the charm. Isn't she cute?

The next card is from Dotti in Nevada. We had swapped before but this time she challenged me to a private swap. She chose the theme "Strings and Things" and has carried it of wonderfully. The colors are fantastic. She states that the swirl in the middle is a pipe cleaner covered with strings. There are sparkles and ribbon and a that face I have been seeing on Kate's blog.

In return here is a picture of my card to Dotti. I took her literally and used strings left from a days worth of sewing. I also added some silver star sequins for my "things", but some netting over it and fmq all over with several different threads. The background was a piece of hand dyed my friend Glenda I end made many years ago.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Wash or No Wash?

You see it everywhere "pre-wash your fabrics". OK, but why? If you tell me it is because you are allergic to the chemicals and starches I would understand. If you tell me you think a particular fabric (usually red or hot pink) will run, I would understand. But please don't tell me it is to pre-shrink it. Have you really had a problem with today's fabrics shrinking? I certainly haven't. I have some quilts that I have made in the early 90's with less than stellar fabrics, from less than stellar sources. I never pre-washed any of that fabric and those same quilts have been washed a ton of times. Not only that but (are you sitting down?) I wash them in the washer with a teaspoon of dish soap, and then put them in the dryer. Are you shocked?
These quilts have not shrunk one tiny bit, they haven't even puckered (which I wouldn't mind if they did).
So someone, please tell me, what is the point?

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Just another Sunday

Do you remember when you were a kid and got your first box of 64 Crayola Crayons? I could never decide which color to use first. I think that has something to do with why I love making postcards. I can use whatever colors I want and change the colors as often as I like. They are quick and relatively easy. These "Letter L' cards (Arts in the Mail) aren't due until December 15 but I am always early. I may not mail them for a while but at least they are ready. This is a Deanna Hartman pattern.

I got one more block done, this should be #11. I am running out of ideas and I'm going to start making the same blocks. I have also noticed that with the exception of one fat quarter, all my reds are directional. I am going to have to be more careful when I buy fabric. This one is for Barbara S in West Virginia.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Incoming - Outgoing

Today I received this block from Liz in New York.
On the outgoing side is Block #10 for Bridget in Nashville. So far, this is my most favorite fabric. It's not just red and green, but is cranberry and olive. I like the way this one turned out and marks the half way mark in this project.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Today's Mail

Today's mail brought me my first block. This is from Claire in Massachusetts.

My PC34 swap has brough me so many wonderful postcards. This little jewel is from Christian from the Fylde Coast of the UK. Who would have thought they have beaches that look like this. Have you ever seen so much stitching in such a small space?.

Boy these cards sure look better when I scan them as opposed to using the camera.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

8 & 9

Block #8 belongs to Elaine in Massachusetts. This pattern is very similar to 54-40 or Fight with the colorations changed around. This is a free Eleanor Burns pattern which you can find here.

Block #9 is for Mikol. It's a very simple red on red and I had a hard time picking something to go with it. Too many choices makes me crazy (probably why I make scrap quilts - I use everything). The pattern is another Marcia Hohn pattern called Bears Tracks.
It wasn't a difficult block but the seams just would not lay flat. I steamed it into submission but I am still not thrilled. I don't think I'll make this one again.

Pay it Forward Giveaway

I have been trying to win one of Kate's weekly giveaway's for a few weeks now with no luck. I did however, win Cindy's Pay it forward Friday. OK, I know it's not Friday, but I didn't name the thing. So I will name mine, Pay it Forward Wednesday Giveaway. Everyone who comments between now and Monday October 22 at 6PM EST (can't get any more specific than that) gets their name put in a hat, or cup or bowl (whatever I have handy) and I will pick a name and pay it forward. In the next 6 weeks, I will send you a special handmade item. All I ask is that if you comment and have a blog that you do the same if I pick you. If I don’t pick you, you can still pay it forward if you want to pass along the crafty love, too.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

A postcard and a quilt

This shiny beauty is fro Sharon in Arizona. It was for the Arts in the Mail , the letter J, J is for Jewel. This card was mailed in a clear envelope. The post office must have really liked it though, because they put it in another envelope and aplologized for the damages. There were no damages, not even a cancellation mark, but thank you Post Office anyway.

After my first few years of quilting, my husband kept bugging me for his own quilt. He is an avid fisherman and of course he wanted a quilt with fish. I was not ready to tackle (no pun intended) applique so I used a bunch of his old Guy Harvey tee-shirts. I included whatever I could find with fish on it. He was happy with his quilt for many years until the living room was redecorated. The colors changed from blues to golds, rust and oxblood. He nagged for another quilt that coordinates with the decor. I'll post the fishy quilts replacement in the next few days.

Monday, October 15, 2007

4,5,6 & 7


Linda's fabric is really cute but the images are rather large. She said it would OK to make a 9 patch, but yuk, how booring. I tried to fussy cut the ice skating mouse for the center.

#5, a little easier, this one for Liz. I think the pattern is 54-40 or Fight.

#6 Belongs to Sharon, This fabric was directional and the snowmen a bit on the larger side. I used a simple pattern and attempted to fussy cut the snowmen.

Lastly for tonight #7

Donna's fabric is cats, so what else would you make but a Christmas Cat. I found this pattern at Quilters Cache.
So far, which is your favorite?

Please kick me in the head

It's been a long time since I've posted on a message board. What made me think that after all these years anything would be different. I had forgotten that a good amount of HGTV posters are Simply Quilts groupies. Your opinion is not wanted if it does not conform to their sun-shiny , everything is wonderful and yes you too can make your first quilt a queen size one with your treasured fabrics, view of the world.
Yes, I have been a bad girl again attempting to give advice to a newcomer. If I dare to post again, or even think about posting my opinion again, somebody please kick me in the head.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Some little quilts, a big quilt and Block 3

Here's 13 preemie quilts that will be going to the quilt guild next weekend. They are my most favorite thing to make because I can pretty much make 2 in a day. I wait for sales to purchase pastel fabrics and I used to get leftover batting from my friend Glenda, a longarm quilter. I have a standard checkerboard pattern that I use, 2 1/2" squares, 7 across by 7 down. There are 3 chinese coin quilts here made from some old Key West Fabrics (really, really bright). I was inspired by Mary and Vicki. They make good practice for machine quilting.

In 1997 I said "if you use enough colors, it will all go together". Fellow guild members did not believe me so I put 4 ladies to a challenge. Each month we would make a 6" block, any color, any pattern. We would trade 4 and keep one for ourself. The trade would last for 12 months. Here is the result. This is my quilt. It resides on the back of my lazy boy. Because my husband keeps the a/c at sub-zero I am always cold and always coverd by this quilt. I would say it has held up pretty well. My thanks to Glenda, Betty, Maureen and MaryJane.

Lastly, I have completed block 3, this one is Christines. It is an unusual but beautiful choice for a Christmas fabric. Christine says it's sort of shabby chic. It is a pale green with tiny bits of pink. I had several coordinating fabrics I could have used but Christine requested a white on white background.None of the colors on any of my photos are coming out so great but here's the pictures anyway. The pattern is more simplistic than blocks 1 & 2 but look at how all my points match. I'm impressed.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Block 2

This is Claires fabric. But first, a little bit about focus fabric. I am not a big fan of the whole concept. Don't misunderstand me, I love this particular piece of fabric. It has creme, tan, red, green, maroon and gold. There was plenty in my stash that went well with it but is it a light or a dark? Not only that but it is directional.

So I have spent most of the day paper piecing this block (44 pieces altogether) and I'm not all that pleased. I know I used the right colors but the placement is all wrong. Maybe I'm going to have to find an easier pattern. Maybe I'm just overthinking it.

Maybe I should just show you a picture of the little orchid that bloomed today in my garden.

Yup, I did it!

It's not even a month since my first post and I did it, I pissed them off. (see the first post in September, don't know how to link that yet.) I posted a picture of the F8 block I finished and was hit with the emails. Apparently, you are not supposed to post a picture until the recipient gets the block. Mind you, that rule is no posted anywhere and the other ladies are quick to tell you that, it is an unwritten rule. Ah, the beauty of a personal blog. I can post what I want.

You might wonder why I'm so keen on posting pictures in the first place. Remember that swap from 2001? There was one gal who said she didn't get a block from me or anyone else for that matter. I know the post office loses mail from time to time, but .....let's get real. So I want to document every block I make and receive.

Friday, October 12, 2007


I got the most novel card. Those buttons are loose under a piece of clear plastic. It was made by Cheryl in Oklahoma. The theme was "The letter J'.... too cute.

I have started to receive fabrics for the F8 Christmas swap. I have completed my first block, one down, 18 to go (or 19 if I make one for myself). This one is for Shey. On the left is her fabric, on the right the finished 12" block. Too bad the colors are so washed out in these photos.