Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Laurel Burch Baby Quilt



I just finished this one. I used Rheingold thread on top and So Fine by Superior in color Marigold. I just had fun with this one, outlining the mermaids and making waves and watery curls. I put a fern border on it and some simple sashing designs.

Judy's Sampler is Done


I used Diana Phillips Flower Power book for the block design. I love her book. It is full of ideas that are easy to stitch freemotion. What could be better. Judy's backing is a yellow batik. I used King Tut Shekels thread on top and Superior So Fine Mustard #422 in the bobbin. The batting is Quilter's Dream Blend for a lovely drape. Judy had some fussy-cut sun rays in the setting and corner triangles. I used the Circle Lord to make the spirals in the center of the triangle applique and then free-handed the sun rays. This quilt was a lot of fun. I hope you enjoy the photos.







Danielle's Hearts



She designed a fill with hearts and quilted it aound the hearts. Then she doodled until she came up with her own sashing with hearts and loops. It looks fabulous.




This is a sweet paper-pieced heart quilt that Danielle pieced recently. It has some bad-girl in it, lots of dramatic black surround those deep red hearts. She decided that she wanted some puff in her quilt so she used Quilters Dream Puff. The backing is black dotted. She used Superior's King Tut # 926 Red Sea.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Spring has sprung




What a great surprise to find these beauties waiting for me this morning.
These are pots by my back patio, violas, Johnny Jump-Ups are always so cheery. These pots are hung on a vertical stand with jasmine that is still in the vining stage. The fragrance will waft right in the patio door in another month or so when we can leave the patio door open.


This potato vine shares a fence with my passion vine that is the host plant for Gulf Frittilary butterflies. Many people like the fragrance of the potato. (I am not one of them). But they certainly put on a show. You can see there are many waiting to bloom.





Old Faithful geranium. This is the only spot it blooms in. It is hidden among the roses and tucked into the rose arbor. Maybe it thinks it is a rose. (I won't tell if you won't) Geraniums were my mother's favorite flower. They just bloom non-stop here in southern California.


We received this cyclamen as a house-warming present 7 years ago and it likes the morning shade and noon sun it gets in this flower bed. However, it looks like this fern is getting a bit too cozy in this spot and is taken up too much room. This bed also holds a gardenia that is fragrant later in the spring.





I have several pots of flowers in my garden. I have gophers and have lost hundreds of bulbs to those critters so now I have to keep them protected in pots. These are my first Calla lillies of the year.

Thank you for stopping by my garden for a visit. Won't you leave a comment about your garden and tell me what you love to grow. I have a friend in Kansas City that grows a big vegetable garden for her family. Well, her family and the bunny rabbits family who visits her garden. LOL. Tell me about your garden in a comment.

Danielle's Treat or Treat Quilt



Isn't this the cutest quilt. It is all square in a square of brights, lots of purple, yellow and orange. The border is this fabulous Halloween fabric with skeletons, goblins and graveyard characters. The backing is all jack-o-lanterns. I remember some of the Halloweens when I was a child and it is such a fun time. All the kids dressed up like monsters, princesses or pirates. It was all good fun.





Danielle used Warm's Soft and Brite batting and Signature cotton thread Purple Iris top and bobbin. She quilted a medium stipple on the quilt. It looks great.




Her next project is a quilt with fabulous paper-pieced hearts all done in reds surrounded by blacks on point with a red sasing and black border. We tried the Circle Lord for this but the hearts are much narrower on the bottom than the CL template was. So Danielle plans to quilt double-line hearts in the hearts. She has been doodling hearts and loops and curls to come up with a sashing that pleases her. I will post photos when she is done with it.

We have been talking about how to do feathers. She picked up the hump-bump feathers quite easily on paper. She has a big Log Cabin quilt and she wants to quilt feathers on it. I will post photos after she finishes it.

Quilt Whisperer class in Sacramento



What a great week-end. Terry and I flew up to Sacramento so I could take a class from Carla Barrett, an award-winning quilter, who teaches the Quilt Whisperer class at High Sierra Quilters in Cameron Park east of Sacramento.

We have not been on a trip in a while so this one was fun. If you have ever read my blog then you know my feelings about flying Southwest. Well, I have something good to say about them this time. As we stood in our numbered slots waiting to board the plane, a soldier in camouflage uniform toting a GI bag approached the line to board the completely full plane. I didn't see the Southwest employee but I heard him say to the soldier

"Thank you for your service, please go to the front and welcome aboard".

Both my husband and I are veterans so this show of support and courtesy went straight to our hearts. I am so happy that our fighting force gets this kind of respect from the people who enjoy the freedom provided by these guys and girls in uniform. God bless America and Southwest Airlines.

We had reserved a car for our drive from Sacramento International Airport to El Dorado Hills where our hotel was located. I think that 2 people (5'11" and 6'2") and their accompanying luggage and class notebooks need space. It is pure folly and probably comical to watch somebody my size get into one of the economy cars that these rental car companies have. So we reserved a "full size" car. The confirmation email had listed a Taurus or something comparably sized. So we ride the rental car bus to the rental car terminal and check in at Budget for our full size car. Ah, no. They had a choice between a Mitsubishi or a Hyundai Sonata. Is this a joke? There is not a shoe-horn big enough to get me into a Mitsubishi. What about a Taurus? No Taurus. They consider Mitsubishi a full size car. And maybe that is fine for a family of short people or even skinny young people. We are not those people. We upgraded to the next level.....which is really what Budget expects people to do when they see that so-called full-sized Mitsubishi. So we rented the Bat Mobile in a lovely pearl color. I call the Chrysler 300 a Bat Mobile because that is what it reminds me of. It was very roomy, good power and ran great. Other than Terry's problem figuring out how to open the gas tank (push the tank door), we had no trouble with our car.


We drove thru some beautiful countryside with rolling green hills and valleys and many, many trees. It was a lovely drive and as we crested a hill, we were amazed to see the snow covered Sierras span out on the horizon in front of us. They must have been 30 miles away but they were magnificent.



Carla had invited me to her studio for a tour. It was fabulous, only a few of her ribbons were on the wall. She was working on the border of a blue and white Feathered Star It was fun to see a work in progress in this studio. She also showed me several of her quilts. I got to see the purple beauty named In the Garden that took 4 ribbons at the Folsom Quilt show. Best of Show, Viewer's Choice, Best Machine Quilting. You can see some more of Carla's work here. But (she said smugly) I got to see it up close and personal. No white-glove ladies here. The sun was pouring in through the windows and I got up close, it is fabulous. That's where you can really see the details of her work. Unique fills flawlessly executed, original florals draw your eye to her quilting and several areas of double-line work that emphasize the key parts of the quilt. Her quilting is inspirational. Even though she does not consider herself a Diva, she rates Diva status. Sorry, no photos, like so many of us, Carla is camera shy.

The next morning was the class. There were seven of us. Laura from Vacaville and LaurieG from Vallejo, who I know from the APQS chat, traveled to Sacramento for this class. There were 3 locals and a quilter from Chico. 5 of us were longarmers. Carla presented the class so that it covered the aspect of longarming and domestic quilting. Lot of ideas, resources and sharing. We learned about marking, thread, stencils made from products found in the kids toy aisle. She shared tools to use for various quilting things, including her favorite frogger for "unquilting" a mistake.

The last part of the class, we pulled out our quilts. This is where the whipering part is. No, there really isn't any whispering. The class was named as a joke and it just stuck. But when you think about how certain people seem to have insight into problems that you and I cannot decipher, well, they whisper back and forth with the quilt. The quilt tells a story. Most of us longarmers have had these "stand and stare" moments; you hold them up to see the quilt and then you stand and stare and wonder "How am I going to quilt this?". She walked us through the entire process in class. I picked up several techiniques. I also got to see a quilt through Carla's eyes. Several of the students jumped in with ideas on how to quilt a certain area. It was great. I want a committee like that the next time I get stuck on a quilt.

I would recommend this class to all skill levels. There is something there for everybody. Bring a sketchpad and notebook.
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My life has changed in the last couple of years - some bumps, I retired from quilting, and then I moved to Texas. I'm anxious to see what new adventures await me in the next phase of my life.

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Ramona, California, United States
I started quilting when a quilt shop opened in our little town in January 2004. I have been hooked ever since.

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Books I"ve read lately

  • The Help (Kindle)
  • The Appeal by John Grisham
  • Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd
  • Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
  • To Kill a Mockingbird (again) by Harper Lee
  • Bleachers by John Grisham

This is called Fruit Cocktail

This is called Fruit Cocktail
It is all batiks