Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Act of Kindness

Earlier this year I sent Quilting Fiesta some scraps just because. Nothing expected in return on my part. Then out of the blue (and in my mailbox) I find a simple act of kindness. This darling little quilt makes its way to my home with a little note tucked inside thanking me for the fabric and with the leftovers she made this for me. Thank you!!

I won! Kelly at Cotton Charm Quilts had a giveaway and I was a lucky winner of a layer cake. She told me she had the brand new Collections for a Cause "Faith" and I was sold! I ordered a 2nd layer cake to go with my win and while at it asked her about Antique Fair and lucky again as she had some from market so I lucked out and also got myself a jelly roll with birthday money. (thanks mom)
Mom wanted me to buy something nice with my birthday money. I'm chuckling because as a quilter we all know we prefer fabric over clothing shopping anyday. Am I right or not?

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Many More Thanks About My Birthday...if you don't mind.

If there is one thing about a December birthday so close to Christmas is that you usually get birthday gifts wrapped in Christmas paper (it is handy). This wrapped gift absolutely made me feel as though I had a true birthday!

I've put all these together in one photo but have many to thank. Kim made me the quilt complete with hanger and I couldn't say it any better, "Kindness Matters" and hers sure did! Wendy was my very first blog friend and look at the beauty of a purse that she made for me. Carol spoils me throughout the year and for my birthday she made sure I had the beautiful birthday wrap you see above and in those were the layer cake of Hope and my sign (I LOVE signs). Two charm square packs are from Kim; can't say enough good things about her and her kindness to me! To all my blog buds who sent me birthday wishes via packages, phone calls, emails etc....I thank you...means the world to me.
My December birthday this year was one to remember and by far the best! I woke to a gift and card that read I needed to be ready for a full day ahead of surprises and no worries. We would be having brunch out and then heading to Raleigh to meet my oldest son and his girl at The Cheesecake Factory for dinner. My gift from DH was a beautiful diamond necklace! I was already on cloud nine before heading out the door. Little did I know that DH and youngest son had packed an overnight bag and tossed it in the trunk of the car before we left. I enjoyed the day out and had my whole family together for a wonderful dinner together. Nothing in my day felt like Christmas...it was my day! The waiter overheard talk at the table about my day and surprised me with a little shot class fudge sundae complete with whipped, sprinkles and candle. It was just emotional for me to see birthday....I got all teared up and all was right with the world...it was my day!
My oldest son announced at dinner that he had a reservation for DH and I that night at the FIVE STAR Umstead Hotel and Spa....I went into panic a bit as I didn't know about the packed bag in the car. LOL WOW....I was staying at a hotel that actors, singers and who's who stay at! (my son is a car park valet at the hotel and has met Paula Deen, Santana, and so many others) Our stay was wonderful! The shower to die for! OMG...if I had known the shower was going to be that good I would have gotten up an hour earlier and drained the hotel of all hot water.
When my son made the reservation he initially did so for our 27th anniversary that we celebrate the 30th but DH told him go ahead and book for my birthday eve. That night in the hotel we got a call that asked if we were ready for our ammenities.....excitement...what could be ammenities? They delivered a bottle of champagne, sweets on a tray that read "Happy Anniversary" written in chocolate! It was the best day ever.
Today is Christmas and I'm chatting about my birthday...I know, I know. But I just had to share. We are celebrating Christmas tomorrow when my oldest son is home....he is parking cars this evening at Umstead Hotel. :-)

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Lots of Thanks Going on Here!

I won Amy Butler's book from Bonnie and won Cut-Loose Quilts from Sandie. Sandie also include a little birthday FQ...just cause. Thank you ladies!

It's beginning to look like Christmas and the mail lady is getting a work out here at the hollow. Thank you to Shelley for the sweet wool stocking and FQ's, Sue delighted me with a mug rug and Carrie sent me a special ornament.

Cindy sent pretty fabric wrapped bowls, trivets and darling tote and all are so cheerful and fun!

There was more in the box from Cindy. Here is a side view of a darling fabric basket so professionally embroidered with the cutest gingerbread guys!

A snapshot of the inside. She also embroidered the sweetest ornaments. Darling! But what I don't know...I think I got the packages messed up....one is for my birthday and the other Christmas. Either way....love it all...thank you Cindy!!!

Carrie sent me this birthday present early in the month and I had no clue she remembered December as my month so I opened unexpectedly and found these treasures! Just look at the sewing tote! Carrie tells me she made it back in June and held on to it for my birthday. She also knows I love hummingbirds....thank you Carrie!
There are a few more packages that have arrived for my birthday from my bloggy friends that I'm trying my hardest to save until Wednesday.
You know, I just can't say enough about my blog buds....you are all the best and seriously....can't you live in my neighborhood?!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Thank You Karen!

A just because surprise gift showed up in today's mail from Karen......

AND in with my just because gift was this top! Karen and I struck up a barter deal just a few short months ago. I've never had much patience for hand applique. Why did I think I would do the Piece and Plenty BOM when I ordered it? It was fun to watch Karen post what seemed every few hours a new block; she was that fast! I'll be adding borders, quilting and bind the top for the final finish (something I CAN handle). Thank you Karen....you are the best and officially my go-to gal for applique! I wish you could all see her work up close and personal - perfection!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Did Somebody Say Fish?

Just after the previous post "Fish Creek Cabin" quilt was attacked by Meow. I quickly grabbed the camera and caught this moment before scolding her as she is not permitted up the stairs where I quilt. (Meow looks for me when she wakes from her morning naps.) Just had to share.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Meet Marcie Patch from Patchalot Patterns!

I met Marcie of Patchalot Patterns nearly two years ago when we met at the Hampton Show. I fell in love with her pattern design called, "Indian Paintbrush." You can see it hanging behind us in this booth.
Here's mine on my bed. I've shared this before but well worth sharing again.

I finished borders on Fish Creek Cabin; another one of Marcie's patterns. This quilt measures 27 x 35 and I personally think a great candidate for the Le Petite that Sinta and Sherry have coordinated for us bloggers. (Hint!!)

Fat Quarter Shop now carries Marcie's patterns. You can also see many of Marcie's other patterns to include free ones here. Her blog is called Patchalot More; I wouldn't want you to miss her latest pattern called Lil Smokey posted here.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Grandma's Stars

Grandma's Stars was a FREE pattern on Connecting Threads a few years ago. I don't see it on their FREE patterns section anymore but I did save the pattern. Just let me know if you want the pattern and I will email it to you!

I made this top living in England and while husband was deployed to Iraq. It had sat for over 5 years unquilted. I wanted to try a new feather design called Goose Down so out came this top.

Last night I stitched on binding, today was wash, dry and crinkle. The color is horrible is this photo but you see crinkle.

The majority of the quilt was Kansas Troubles Seeds of Time. I think the green stars was a Thimbleberries fabric. This isn't a favorite quilt of mine (perhaps why it sat for five years). It is a wonderful small lap size quilt that needs a loving home. I've got somebody in mind...but what if this person doesn't comment that she likes it or wants it? Speak up!!!
Note that if you are a NO REPLY BLOGGER I have no way to send you the pattern! Please include your email if in doubt.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

I love this post!

Holly with berries quilted on Carol's charm runner screams homespun Christmas! Love it!!

I have a new feather design that I'm in love with! This is Carol's Butter Churn quilt using Moda's Wild Rose fabric....YUMMY!

Gosh darn...love seeing the texture in the perfect lighting! Thank you Carol for allowing me to share before you see them in person! I was just too excited about seeing these quilted.

LOOK at my win from Cyndi at Bluebird Swing Designs!!! I have to tell you that this tote is awesome! I cannot get over how professionally put together with grommets, zippers, pockets, bow....love it!

Here is a look at the inside. Cyndi makes beautiful handbags and totes. Please, please spend some time on her blog scrolling through older post to see some of her work. She takes orders! She is amazing! Let's try to convince her that we want an Etsy or special tab on her blog of her professionally made totes!

Cyndi included extra goodies in the tote that I forgot to photograph. Thank you Cyndi for not only the tote but pocket calendar, recipe cards, notepads etc. I'll be placing an order soon!
Another photograph I completely forgot to take before this post was a win of some patterns Julie no longer wanted. Thank you Julie!
I've been emailing back and forth with Sue today about us both freezing. I lived in England for three years before moving to NC. It has been snowing in England and cold. I told her I was thankful to not be there at moment. Well, a look out my window and IT IS SNOWING!!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Before & After






Ready to hand stitch binding on the runners. These were made with 30's fabrics. I'm not a fan of 30's as my home has that look of "old." Which runner do you favor? It could be winging it's way to your home as a surprise of course!

Snap Happy bags headed to new homes in today's mail.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Perfect Example

Here is a quilt top that Bari had me quilt for her. She wasn't real sure about this top but wanted something quilted all over to use for the holidays rather than set it aside as a UFO. I think Bari had her doubts about this one; so I'm showing you a perfect example.

We both agreed swirls would give some fun movement; so in the photo above you can see what I see while I quilt. I'm always excited as I watch the quilts come to life.
This photo is a bit dark but best I could do at the time on that dark cloudy day. Don't you just love what looks like cinnamon buns swirls?!! I love it and so did Bari! Check out my envelope below (tilt head). This is just too funny! She also sent as a thank you the crocheted dish towel.

Get out your tops that you "just not sure about" and get them quilted....I think you will be pleasantly surprised like Bari.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Pleasing Pebbles

In the next few post I will try and show some of what I've been working on these past weeks. This is Carol's table runner. A simple pattern with leaves appliqued on a background fabric. As I watched this quilt "come to life" I stopped to take a photo to share with you.

What do you think? Did quilting make the quilt?

Every single pebble you see here was hand guided and my back had many stretch breaks.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Long Time No Post....Here I Am!

Okay, so I've been a bit busy and have neglected the blog. You know it has been awhile when you receive emails asking if your well etc. (you all know who you are and you get extra brownie points!!) Do I even keep brownie points? These two bloggets deserve lots of brownie points don't you think? The above picture is a box of goodies that arrived in today's mail from Mary Lou. She included four patterns of her very own! Love em!

Karen....my dear blog friend Karen....what can I say about her blog friendship that could possibly top her giving me this quilt top? She made two at a time and recently posted one to keep and one to share. I had no idea that is wonderful homespun delight was mine! I've got it in my pile of tops to quilt. It will certainly be a treasure and I will always think of her each time I see it.
Karen and Mary Lou....from the heart I say thank you. Can you be my neighbor?

I do plan to post a few quilts that I've been quilting soon. Here is Short Story pattern from the Schnibbles Times Two book that Sandy made and I quilted a few weeks ago.
What I would like to do is post pictures of quilts in the process of being quilted so that you can see an unquilted area vs the quilted area and really get the sense of seeing it "come to life" so to speak. This is something I always get excited about during the quilting process.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

More Stars Anybody?

Here's a good peek of what I've been up to with my star blocks. I've still got a stack of star blocks to work into small quilts. I wanted to share with you a sampling of the quilting I did yesterday. These are all ready for binding and evening stitching. I'm glad I made duplicates of a few of these especially now that I see quilting bringing them to life; how will I part?

In answer to a few questions about quilting small quilts on my longarm. It is easiest to load one backing fabric that works for all the tops. I then use remnant pieces of batting. I've got a variety of batting in these mini quilts from Hobbs, Warm & Natural and Quilter's Dream.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Really, I Don't Have Pets

For now you get a peek of what is becoming of all those stars in the previous post.

If you have followed my blog you know the story about the neighbors dog and cats who preferred my home to their own. The beagle is rarely seen anymore and once in awhile the cats will visit. Midnight is a lover and pure delight to have visit because of her fantastic hunting skills to keep critters at a minimum in the yard. Did I say visit? It has been months now and we have a routine. She isn't allowed anywhere in my house but on this quilt where she naps daily while I quilt upstairs. When she finishes her nap she comes to find me for her snack before heading out for more hunting.
The previous post had these stars on the floor to show how many I've been making. She found not only me upstairs but loved the stars on the floor! I think a breeze must have slightly moved a thread and she pounced immediately. I tell you she is a great hunter.
Hi Mom! (a little shout out because she called about not being able to see my blog. She has been checking regularly to keep up with what I'm doing)