Thursday, February 28, 2013

Another Finish

I finished another smaller sized lap quilt (46" x 58") this week. 
It was an quick and easy quilt from a kit that you can read about here.
I stipple quilted in the plain blocks, but wasn't sure what to quilt in the picture blocks. 
My friend Nancy let me use her fancy sewing machine to quilt some snowflake chains in each block. It was really fun to quilt and the perfect touch for the project.
This quilt also went to the silent auction for my brother's fundraiser last weekend, which raised over $4,000 for his upcoming surgery (for private room recovery and post surgical recovery therapy)!! 
His new album is available now and you can buy it on iTunes or you can check it out at: "This is the Sound of My Voice".  BTW...my favorite tracks are 3, 10 and 7 (in that order!) 

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Votes For Women Wednesday

The wonderful block patterns and stories remembering the women who fought for our right to vote continue over at Barbara Brackman's Grandmother's Choice blog.
This is block #18 called Cheyenne, commemorating that Wyoming was the first state to legislate the right for women to vote.
I fussy cut a bird block for the center, and used some squares from a Metropolitan Fair (by Barbara Brackman) Moda Candy pack that I received from a quilty friend. I love those little sweet treats!

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

A Finished Quilt

I finished a quilt within two months from start to finish, which must be a "personal best" record!
This was the New Year's Eve mystery quilt posted on the Quiltaholics Anonymous Yahoo group. It was a fun pattern that cleared out lots of old 2.5" strips of batiks from my stash.
I finished the quilt quickly in order to donate it to the fundraiser/silent auction this past weekend raising money for my brother's upcoming surgery.
I have two other finishes to share later in the week...woohoo!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Design Wall Monday #8

On my design wall today is my collection of the Grandmother's Choice - Votes For Women blocks. The project is half done now with 25 of the 49 block patterns posted. My friend Nancy fixed up the applique points on the brown star block, so I am happier to include it now. 
As you can see, I have only finished 15 of the 25 blocks so I have a little catching up to do. 
To see more design walls today, hop over to Patchwork Times.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Slow Sunday Stitching

I finished this adorable little mini quilt with scraps from my friends. The HST's were garbage rescued from the trash from one friend's (Diane) project, the border and backing was in a scrap bag (from Cynthia), and the batting scrap was from a 3rd friend (Helen). 
It was a quick and fun project that I called "With A Little Help From My Friends". 
The HST's are .75" finished, so the quilt is about 5" x 6". The binding was super quick to finish!
What are you stitching by hand this week? You can share your project by linking to your blog below.


Friday, February 22, 2013

BUSY...

Sewing blocks and rows into a quilt top:
Basting on a cold winter day:
Quilting vertical wavy lines with hearts:
Binding (with a pin injury - bandaid to match the colour of the quilt of course!): 

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Indian Orange Peel Update (IOP)

IOP (aka Indian Orange Peel and/or Chompers) has finally seen some progress! I forced myself to sew another block and it lays somewhat flat. There are now 3 of the 25 center blocks done...woohoo! 

Admittedly there were a few bad words said, but no tears shed while sewing this block, so improvement is being made! 
I have a rule that I only rip out and re-sew a seam three times and then I "call it a day"! This one was bad and is staying that way! The points don't meet and the corners are out and that is "good enough".



I guess this corner is about the same but "not terrible" so I'm leaving that.





And this one? 
The points are good and the corners meet up, and there is no pleating in the seam... I think it's as good as I'm ever going to be able do on these blocks!





Looks like I'm sewing some weird kind of origami!

Yep...the wine helps a lot!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Votes For Women

I was so sad to read about the death of an inspiring quilter that I know through blogland. I used to love popping over to see what Karen was creating with her Votes for Women project - or as she called it "BB (for Barbara Brackman) Women's Suffrage BOW". You can see her last block here. And just look at the masterpieces she made with these blocks. I love her creative use of images and text in her blocks. It is so sad that this quilt will not be finished, her life and her quiltmaking ending much too soon.


I have finished another block for my Votes for Women quilt. This is block #17 called Mother's Delight. It was one of the most challenging blocks to sew in the BOW so far. 
Wanting to avoid using templates, I drafted a pattern on freezer paper to use as a foundation to piece on. The center join isn't great, but not too terrible either!
This BOW (block of the week) is now more than half finished, and all the block patterns are still available, so it's not too late to start yours - click here to get to the website.  I am a few blocks behind, but really have enjoyed making another sampler quilt with Barbara Brackman!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Treadling scraps on Tuesday

Mary posed a great question on her blog last month...how small is too small? It was quite interesting to read the comments on that post, and the wide ranges of sizes that quilters keep or toss in the garbage. 
I have always been reluctant to part with any scraps, and have adopted many scraps from friends who don't have the same scrap hoarding problem interest as I do. At times I worry that I have caught some kind of rare and untreatable sickness, and at other times I think I must be the luckiest quilter alive to have all these treasures!

I love treadling small scraps into larger pieces and then foundation piecing them onto 3" x 10"  adding machine tape blocks.
Here are my 5 most recently treadled blocks that will join the Coin Collection...yep, that's the quilt's new name!

Monday, February 18, 2013

Design Wall #7

On my design wall today is a Charlie Brown Christmas quilt that my sister and I are making for the fundraiser for my brother's healthcare costs. 
It was made from a kit I bought at Quilter's Nine Patch and it went together really quickly. The backing is already pieced and the binding made, so I plan to finish the quilt this week.
Hop over to Patchwork Times to see more design walls.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Slow Sunday Stitching - hand piecing

Yippee...it's Sunday again! Today it's going to be cold here at around minus 13 degrees...perfect hand stitching weather!
This morning I made the draw for the winner of my "Spread a Little Love" mini quilt, and it is #20 - Britt-Inger! Thanks to everyone who participated in the Hugs and Kisses blog hop
Did you see that we had over 20 link ups for last week's Slow Sunday Stitching with incredible hand work being shared!? The links last week inspired me to dig out my old hand piecing project - a really, really old baby blocks project! 
Here are the blocks laid out on my dining room table. 
This is at least 15 years old, and every once in a while I find it again and make a few more blocks, and put it away because: 
1) I have no plan for it,  
2) there is no motivating deadline, and 
3) it is boring with only 3 colours! 
I will try to keep at it until I have enough blocks for a baby quilt.
Hand piecing takes me right back to my roots in quilting. Many years ago a very talented quilter (Margery Thorman) generously offered to teach me how to quilt, and she did every step by hand...the old fashioned way with templates and scissors (no rotary cutter!)  Every week over the course of the winter in 1996 I went to her house and she taught me to hand piece blocks and how to hand quilt. 


This is the quilt I made with her, which was made totally from fabric from her stash. All the blocks were hand pieced and it was quilted by hand.
I am remembering Mrs. T today and honouring her memory by doing some hand work. She would be so pleased to know that she helped me to fall in love with quilting, and that I am still at it!
What are you hand stitching today? 
Share your blog link up below:

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Purple or Violet?

Here is my next Palm Branch block for one of my Scrappy Rainbow Challenge projects.
You can find the paper pieced pattern by Kristy over at Quilt Play.
It is "purple" or "violet"? 
In my quilty adventures I have met some quilters who don't like "the P word", and always use "Violet" to describe this colour. 



Whatever you call it, I really like this block and enjoyed using up some lighter scraps of Purple/Violet. Each block uses 14 different scraps plus the background fabric.
Here are the 7 blocks I have sewn so far. Looking forward to adding in some green, yellow and red blocks this year.
It is so fun to see the variety of scrappy projects the rainbow quilters are making this year. Hop over and check it out at SoScrappy's.

Friday, February 15, 2013

The Weekend is HERE!

Look who got a Valentine's Day card from Bonnie Hunter?!?

I don't like to brag, but what can I say??!  Not really....it's from my daughter!
Perhaps I should admit that I talk about Bonnie Hunter too often and watch too much QuiltCam!! LOL 
For sure my daughter has a great sense of humour! I am still laughing about it today...too fun!
For more Valentine's inspiration, hop over to the Hugs and Kisses blog hop...today is the last day. And if you scroll back to yesterday's post on that blog, there is a yummy photo of George Clooney for your viewing pleasure!
If you didn't enter the draw for my Valentine mini quilt, click here and leave a comment. I will draw the winner on Sunday.
TGIF!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Hugs and Kisses Blog Hop

If you are new here, welcome to Kathy's Quilts! Make yourself at home, look around (not in the UFO closets) and enjoy your visit. 
Who could resist a Hugs and Kisses Blog Hop?!? Not me!
That is exactly what the world needs more of, and we are thankful to Madame Samm and CheerleaderJane for helping to spread the love!
Here is the love quilt I made for the hop, in soothing pastel colours...

The pieced heart blocks are 1.5" and the quilt finished at 10" x 11.5". I love the little sparkly heart buttons I found for the corners (at Triangle Sewing). I machine quilted some hearts and loops in the border, which you can maybe see a little of in this photo.

And here are some chocolate kisses to go with the love quilt...
one kiss for every heart!



If you would like to be in the draw to adopt this little quilt that I am calling "Spread a little love", just leave a comment. I'll draw the name of the new owner on the weekend.

Here are the other bloggers that are sharing their quilty treats today...spread the love and leave them some sweet comments!

Learning to accept the chompers!



For a long time (OK...true confessions...it's almost TWO years!) a quilt layout has been on my secondary design wall.
Initially I loved the project, enjoyed selecting the fabrics and playing with the colours, and I loved paper piecing the arcs. Then it gradually morphed into "the dreaded IOP".  
It didn't look "right", it made me feel "itchy" and nervous, and I just wasn't feeling it.  The blocks were so hard to construct, the curved seams onto paper pieced arcs seemed impossible for me to deal with, the colours and layout started to annoy me and ...in fact I started to hate the whole thing.
I can't logically explain it. It doesn't really make any sense, but I had to respect my feelings about it and try to figure out what to do. I had spent a lot of money on the classes and the fabric...what to do?!?
I knew if I put it in the UFO closet, telling myself that it was really a "WIP" (work in progress), that it would never see the light of day again! 
So I kept it in my face. Looked at it (or tried not to) every single day. Wondering to myself "what could I change that would make me like it more"? and asking the quilt "what do you want from me"?!? 
And for two years this quilt did not whisper a single thing.
I am a CQW (certified quilt whisperer) but this quilt was tight lipped - not a peep!
Finally... my friend Louise helped me to accept that "it is what it is". 
And what exactly is it? 
It is a colourful, challenging mess of chomping teeth! 
Yep it is! That's all I saw when I looked at it. It had morphed from a colourful celebration, to a miserable mess of biting teeth.
So those of you who remember that I had braces put on my teeth at 51 years of age (STUPID thing to do even to save your teeth from breaking off) will recognize how much that might be triggering to me. I have had terrible pain (which the Dr. calls "discomfort"!) with these braces and this past weekend another bracket snap off one of my crowns, and I am too busy to get to the office to get it fixed at a time they have available. 
So...I will suffer with it until either it becomes unbearable, or until February 14th Valentine's Day, whichever comes first! That is hilarious to me! Truly, it makes me LOL for real!
And what does all this have to do with the dreaded IOP quilt blocks?!? 

Well, the chompers are going to be worked on this month.
Oh yes they are Gail!
I plan to accept that "it is what it is", take each set of chompers as they are, hand piece the arcs to the curves, and see what happens then. Wish me luck!
And come by tomorrow for my stop on the Hugs and Kisses blog hop!

Monday, February 11, 2013

Design Wall Monday #6

My sister and I have been working on a couple of projects for a silent auction to raise money for my brother's upcoming surgery. He will be in hospital for about a month, and needs to have a private room during his recovery, so his friends are putting together a fundraiser to pay the hospital bill.
This is the New Year's Eve mystery from Fabricaholics Anonymous and will be a lap size quilt made from batik scraps. I think it looks nicer in real life than on the computer screen!
Here are all the columns pinned together and ready to make into a quilt top. 
Then we just need to find a fabric or two in the stash for a border and binding.

Hop over to Patchwork Times to see more design wall postings.
And remember that the Hugs and Kisses blog hop starts today. My day to post is Wednesday, so come on back to visit to see my new heart quilt!

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Slow Sunday Stitching

Not much time for hand sewing this week so I couldn't wait for Sunday to arrive. I plan to quilt until my hands are sore or my fingers are bleeding, whichever comes first! 
I am continuing to quilt my Journey of a Quilter, and am enjoying every stitch. I think the quilting is about 1/4 finished at this point.


These are my favorite quilting needles at the moment - the John James "Big Eye" Size 10. I can always thread this needle, even after quilting for an hour or two late at night!

What are you hand stitching today? Link up your blog post below and share your progress.

Saturday, February 09, 2013

Great Canadian Winter Day

It was a winter wonderland here yesterday. We had "an Alberta clipper combined with moisture from a Texas low"...whatever that means!
All I know is that we had a lot of snow.
It was a perfect day to stay inside and sew. I did a little treadling on my Singer while I watched the snow fall.
I was going to go visit my parents, but I had no luck catching a bus.
Both of these buses were stuck while trying to make a turn. 



The roads were icy under all that snow. I saw the first bus manage to get on it's way, but the second bus was still stuck when I decided that if the buses can't get around, maybe I shouldn't be out and about either. So I just went home and sewed some more.
I made some more Alamo stars in the colour of the month - purple. These are so pretty!
Hop over to SoScrappy and see the other purple projects.

In honour of our wonderful weather, here is some Canadian humour to enjoy...

Friday, February 08, 2013

Quilt Along Addiction

Hi. My name is Kathy and I am a quilt-along-aholic.
I am powerless in the face of a quilt-along. I don't have time or space to start another project, but I will start one anyway. 
Because resistance is futile!
So fellow quilt-along-aholics...
did you join in Lori's Abundance quilt along?
This project is an antique reproduction, and she is calling it "Abundance". 
It is so cute and a perfect size to fit in between other projects...how could you resist?!?!
Here is my version of Abundance all quilted and bound.





I had a few little issues making this little project...
here is my version with the borders pieced incorrectly! 
Oh well, thankfully it was an easy problem to fix and it was a really fun project to work on.
Check out all the amazing Abundance quilts over at Humble Quilts.

Pep Talk

Okay quilters...it's snowing like crazy here and we (I) need a "middle of the winter", "February-cold-snap-are-we-ever-going-to-feel-warm-again?" pep talk.
Get into your warm quilt studio and make some comfort quilts to snuggle up in!
"Create something that will make the world awesome"!

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Votes For Women


I am finally making some progress on my
Grandmother's Choice VOTES FOR WOMENquilt sampler.
It was a bit of a challenge to get the design of those background pieces going the same direction, but it turned out great.

Next up was Block #16 Capital T and it was really fun to sew.
It was in the Capital T (for temperance) posting that I first saw the word "Quixotic"...isn't that a great word?!? I am looking for places to use it! I am not only learning new quilt block patterns and history lessons, I am learning new vocabulary!
The Votes For Women sampler quilt is now up to block # 23, so I am quite a bit behind but hope to catch up soon and am enjoying sewing each block.

Tuesday, February 05, 2013

February's UFO

February's UFO is my BeAttitudes quilt.
I just love this Nancy Halvorsen pattern and really want this to be a finished quilt.
The machine appliqued blocks have been finished for over a year. They are now sewn together and are awaiting a border decision, but I can't decide what to do. This is where many of my UFO's get stalled.
On the photo I'm thinking the light coloured border is too wide, and maybe (for sure!) I don't want all four of them for borders. Do you have a vote?
After adding the borders, I will baste and do the machine quilting so it can become a finished quilt by the end of the month. I am linking up my goal to the February Goal Setting Party. Wish me luck!

Monday, February 04, 2013

Design Wall #5 - Difficult Street!

This is what was on my design wall yesterday...

"easy street" turned into
"difficult street"!

Honestly...what experienced quilter in her right mind would do such a thing?!?

I still can't believe I did that!

OH dear!
Then I did some of this...
gave the seam ripper a good workout and 
presto...

that's much better!

Three rows done and four rows still to go, which will hopefully go together EASIER! This will likely be the largest quilt I've made so far. I bought the backing on the weekend, so I'm ready to finish the top.
Hop over to Patchwork Times and see more design wall posting links.