Sunday, February 28, 2010

Little Strips of Hapiness

Also up this month I am sending out fabrics on Monday for my month of the Fussy Cut Bee. I had such a great time making log cabins for Leanne in February for the Modern Tradition Bee that I knew immediately I needed one of those quilts in my collection as well. I have all kinds of ideas about how I am going to arrange the blocks. One thing I have been struggling with is fabric selection. I'm just not sure I have just the right composition yet. Here is what I have planned so far. Take a look:Now I need to send these out on Monday so I don't really have a ton of time to make any changes but I don't know I feel like it still needs, something. It might help if I tell you that the directions I gave my bee mates is to use a 3.5 inch fussy cut flower in the center of the block and then 2.5 inch logs around. I am going to the local fabric store during lunch on Monday since I need a bit more white fabric for my Bee Stitched blocks.

In my next post I am going to tell you all about the great lunch date I had yesterday. Stay tuned for details.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Spider Web Solved

So remember all of that whining I've been doing about my Spider Web quilt and how I don't like the kites and all that. Well Thursday at the quilt show I think I might have found my solution. Turns out if you twist and turn those blocks you end up with something like this:

I love it. Okay so you still end up with an occasional kite here and there and there are those big x's to think about but I think my love for it outweighs my dislikes in this case. Of course a lot can change between now and May when it's my turn for the bee. Not to mention all of those great ideas that Bea came up with just for me. So maybe it's not really Spider Web solved as much as another Spider Web possibility.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Little Stacks of Happiness

I finally finished cutting all of the 3 inch blocks to send to my bee buddies from Bee Stitched. In the end I decided on this block:

It looks a lot harder than it really is. When you break it down it is two different 4 patches turned in different directions to make the stars. I will have to cut plenty more squares if I end up deciding to do little stars in the boarders like in the inspiration quilt. Over all I have more than 65 fabrics going into this quilt. Some are in every pile and some are not. I also left it open to my bee members to swap out for some of their favorites with a few specifications. I know I can be picky but I want this one to be something I absolutely love.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Growing Collection

It's a little hard to believe that just two weeks ago I had never seen a piece of flea market fancy in person. I had literally drooled over it in so many beautiful quilts on blogs and in the Material Obsession book but I had never actually seen it up close much less held a piece. Well through a few well timed swaps, a new bee buddy, and some Christmas money I know have a bit of a collection. Now I know there are people out there who were lucky enough to purchase this fabric when it first came out and they have been hoarding it scared to cut into it ever since. Not me here is the one and only picture of my little collection you will probably ever see. Because right after I took it I started cutting. The posies arrived in the mail today so I snapped the photo and then started right in. See I have plans for all of these prints to be in a couple of bee blocks for March and i need to get those packets out in the mail. So I am trying to get them all ready to package up before the end of the week. I already know they won't be there by March 1st because of the big quilt show I am going to this weekend. Well lets just say I am a realist and I know that if I send the packets off tomorrow or Wednesday I will be sure to find something at the vendors tables that I will know should have been in those quilt blocks. Hope my bee buddies don't mind to much.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

What's in a Blog

What a nice surprise I had today when I found out that I had been nominated for a beautiful blogger award. Since I am so new to blogging I didn't really think very many people actually read my blog. Part of me was a little amazed to find out that not only are people reading but they actually like my blog as well. Well in order to accept my award I have to follow a few rules so here they are:

Here is the lovely button and here are the rules...

To accept this award, here are the rules:

1. Thank the person who gave you the award. Thank you, Marguerite!
2. Paste the award on your blog (over there on my sidebar, I want that one to hang around for a little while).
3. Link to the person who nominated you.
4. Tell 7 interesting things about yourself (see below)
5. Nominate 7 or 8 blogs (see below)
6. Post links to those 7 blogs (see below)

Well lets see now I have completed steps 1-3. 7 interesting facts about me that might be a bit of a challenge but I'm willing to try.

1. I LOVE polka dots. Any polka dots though I find I don't wear them very often or really even have much stuff with polka dots on them. And yet every time I see things with polka dots I think how much I like them.
2. I played the alto sax in the band all through junior and high school. I only picked that instrument because it was what my brother wanted to play and he got stuck playing the clarinet first. Truthfully I always wanted to play the flute.
3. I took dance lessons for 12 years but I'm not sure I ever really liked it. Don't kill me mom I'm sure I had a lot of fun sometimes.
4. I have always wanted to run a summer camp and I am still convinced that someday I will though I have no idea how I will get there.
5. I was a girl scout and I even earned my Silver Star. The second highest honor you can get in girl scouts. I like to think of it as equivalent to the Eagle Scout since they only have one level and not two.
6. I started scrapbooking before I found my love for quilting and I can still almost immediately pick out some of my favorite scrapbook designers fabrics even if I have never seen it before. I worked in a scrapbook store for a while and would spend hours at a time just staring at paper. I imagine that is what it would be like to work in a fabric store now.
7. My favorite type of food is Sushi. When we lived in Charlottesville the sushi chef knew me by name and always made me freebies. Once Kenny (the Sushi chef) left to go home to China to take care of his mother I stopped going to the restaurant. It just wasn't the same. No all Sushi is not created equal.

Now for the hard part. I am suppose to nominate 7 blogs that I admire. I have been stalking quilting blogs for over a year now and there are a ton out there that I really like. But having to nominate someone for an award really made me think long and hard. I was so surprised to have been nominated myself that I wasn't sure how to go about selecting seven fellow bloggers for the honor. So here is my list in no particular order. Some of these lovely ladies have been blogging for a long time and some are pretty new. All of them are creative and I appreciate that they are willing to share their talents and lives with me as I read along.

1. Bea
2. Molly
3. Crystal
4. Katy
5. Corey
6. Leanne
7. Melissa

Winner Winner Do Over

Well I waited and waited and no word from Mary C so I am staying true to my word and drawing again. Funny thing is a put the info into the random number thing again and it pulled seven again. Mary C when you get around to reading this make sure you email or comment me and let me know who you are and I'll get something out to you. But then I hit the button again and it gave me number 6 which is BailyGirl. So Congratulations BailyGirl. As you are not set to no reply I have emailed you requesting the info I need. Thanks to everyone for playing and I hope to see you all again soon. Hopefully I will have some sewing done before the end of the day.

Saturday, February 20, 2010


Don't you hate it when people make you wait all day to see who the winner is. Well I do so I promise not to be one of those people. After a little confusion this morning and some help from my friends I figured out how to close comments on the previous post and then drew a winner by

The winner is number 7 (Mary C). Mary you are set as a no reply blogger. Please send me an email with your details. If I don't hear back from Mary within 24 hours I will pick another winner. Thank you all for your wonderful comments and please come back to visit soon. I am going to a great quilt show next week and I can't wait. I'm sure i will have a ton of things to share with you then.

Sorry it's not a more clear picture. I guess next up on the list of things to learn is how to put a copy of the random number results into a blog. Hope you all have a great weekend.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

I'm Blessed

Lately I have been feeling very ho hum about life in general. There have been bumps in the road with my job, my husbands job, finances, you name it insert speed bump here. Through those bumps I realize how blessed I am. I'm blessed to have friends like all of you who care and are supportive. I'm blessed to have a close relationship with my mother after years of never seeing eye to eye and times I am quite sure I was a pain in more ways than one. I'm blessed to have a father who still thinks of me as his little girl. I'm blessed to have a husband that loves me despite my many moods. I'm blessed to have quilt friends who are as obsessed with fabric as I am and who are willing to share their good deals. I'm blessed to have fellow bulldog moms who offer advice and understanding of how stubborn they can be. I'm blessed in so many ways.

Lately I have also been lucky enough to find some very hard to find out of print fabrics. I have great friends who have willingly shared secret locations even offered parts of their stash for me. I know that through the next year as I participate in bees with some of you and blog with some of you I am going to be blessed beyond measure. And because I am blessed I want to share some of my good fortune with you. Last week thanks to Mary I was able to purchase my favorite Flea Market Fancy Print ever. And so I decided that I am going to host my first giveaway. I am giving away a fat quarter of this FMF print along with a few other goodies. All you have to do is leave a comment. Let me know how you found my blog and if this is your first visit or if you are a returning guest. Easy as that no need to become a follower or repost this to your own blog. Though I won't argue if you want to share about my humble space with your friends. I'm going to leave the comments open until Saturday morning and will announce the winner shortly after.

Please please be sure you are not set as a noreply comment. I want to respond to all of you and of course I want to be able to let you know if you are the winner. I've had several of these already so please double check your profiles.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Sneak Peak

So I started getting all of my fabric together for March for the Spider Web Bee and then I pulled up my list of address to do the envelopes and somehow I missed that when we got the finally list some of the months had been rearranged and I'm not until May. Oh well it works out fine because it gives me time to find a few more orange fabrics I would really like to include. So I switched gears and started getting things together for my Bee Stitched group and my Fussy Cut Bee because I am in fact sending out fabrics for both of those bees in March. It works out pretty well because the block I chose for my month in Bee Stitched is a scrap busting block so while cutting my fabrics for my Fussy Cut bee and the strips for the Spider Web Bee I just cut an extra strip of each fabric and trimmed them down to the right size. Since I don't have a lot of scraps yet this is the easiest way to do it. Of course I am going to encourage all my Bee Stitched buddies to feel free to add any of their own designer scraps to the blocks as well but I want to be sure they have enough to work with in case they don't have a lot of scraps or in case they love my block so much they have to make one of their own and so then don't want to share (Just kidding girls you have already proven a hundred times over that you love to share. Just thought I would follow suit and give a little sneak peak at some of what will be heading their way.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Fabric Love

I spend way more time than I probably should online looking at blogs, flickr, and etsy in search of inspiration. One thing I have always loved are those pictures of big stacks of fabrics. I always think they look yummy and they just sit there begging to be turned into something great. Well now I have my own, so I can stop drooling over all of yours.

Isn't that a pretty stack. There are several different projects represented in there. But it makes me smile and I want to just sit and look at it all day. But I can't because I have a plan for this weekend. My plan is to get packages ready to send out for March for a couple of bees, make a sample block or two, and get caught up on my paintbox quilt along blocks. I know you are dying for me to tell you a little more about the stack right. Well first up I have some fabrics for my month of the spiderweb bee. I finally decided that I am going to use all orange and pink fabrics and I am going to go with white kites because I think in this case the high contrast will be nice. I do have a little twist to how I am going to ask my bee friends to do when making their blocks but I'll tell you all about that later. I have to keep some of the mystery after all March is still two weeks away.

Here is what I have gathered so far. The top three of course need no introduction they are from the flea market fancy line. I also have some of the bouquet print in the orange on it's way to my house that I plan to add to this group as well. In the second row from left to right we have Anna Marie Horner Cathedral in Zina, Kaffe Fassett Aboriginal Dot, something from my moms local quilt shop that just says David textiles, a fat quarter my mom gave me but I have no idea what it is, and then five coordinating prints from Alice Kennedy's Strawberry Fields line. The back row from left to right is Paula Prass Woodland Delight Bloom, Patty Young Flora and Fauna Dandelion in fuchsia, Monaluna Mingle in tangerine, Jennie Morrison California Dreaming Sidewalk Carnations, Ta Da Dots in Orange, Hope Valley Fiesta, Sandi Henderson Meadowsweet Grand Foliage, Ta Da Dots Raspberry. At first I was a little disappointed at the brightness of color in the Hope Valley and AMH Cathedral but after setting all of the fabrics together on the table I think they give a bit of depth to the color range. But I am noticing that this group may be lacking a bit in the orange department so I might have to find a few more orange fabrics to sneak in there. Other pieces in the first start are for my month in the Fussy Cut Bee but I still have some weeding out to do there so that will be for another post. Hope you all have a happy Valentine's Day and for those of you in the States lucky enough to be off on Monday for President's day enjoy the long weekend and extra sewing time.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Hidden Treasure

Back in December I spent way more time then I should have surfing the Internet and checking out amazing blogs during Sew Mama Sew's giveaway day. I was lucky enough to win a few things during that time. When the packages arrived I ripped into them super excited to see my winnings. Solidia sent me three wonderful fat quarters that I tucked into my fabric bag thinking I would play with them later. It was a nice selection in "Christmas" colors and I thought I would do something for next year with it, since I was already way behind. This week I have spent a lot of time online looking at fabrics and have been lucky enough to add some great pieces to my collection. Of course you have already seen I treated myself to some pink seeds. In addition to that I have some much desired Erin Michael's Lush fabric on the way to me thanks to Dorrie one of my bee buddies who works for a fabric store and just happened to stumble across some forgotten bolts in a storage unit. Another bee buddy of mine was lucky enough to score big with some flea market fancy in what I will admit is my favorite of all the prints. Yes I love this print even more than the seeds hard to believe I know but there is something about the bright orange and gray combo that makes me happy. Anyway thanks to my bee buddies and their kindness I was able to get some great deals on some amazing fabrics. In my online search this week I discovered that there are some prints from the Katie Jump Rope line that I'm also quite found of so I started looking around. Go figure it is another hard to find fabric line and people are already going crazy with some of the prints on ebay and etsy but I will not break again. Nope not going to pay some crazy amount for a tiny piece of fabric. I can do without. But I have digressed again.

As I was putting away my pink seeds tonight I took another look at the fabrics I had won. What!?! Is that...why yes it is. I have two fat quarters of Katie Jump Rope and a Joel Dewberry Lush fabric there. And that makes for a happy ending to a not so great day.

Monday, February 8, 2010

I'm Not Catholic but I Need to Confess

I have one cardinal rule when it comes to fabric and that is I will not pay more than retail for any fabric. I have a hard time even with that most of the time I wait for fabric to be on sale. I have been a huge fan of Flea Market Fancy since I first started quilting. Of course by that time it was already out of print and almost impossible to find. My favorite of all of the prints of course is the seeds which are especially coveted by most of my fellow quilters. This weekend I spent a lot of time on the computer looking for ideas for my own quilt for the Bee-Stitched bee since March is my month. I've narrowed it down to either something like this or like this. I've also been trying to get my fabrics and all together for my Spider Web Bee since March is also my month over there. And I kept looking at spider web quilts online trying to figure out what I am going to do about those kites in the middle. In the end I think I might just use white. I know I keep saying I don't like that look but the more I've looked at them I think the high contrast will look good especially since I am limiting the colors of the strings to pink and orange fabrics. Maybe I am telling you all of this to lessen the blow of what I am about to tell you next. As I was looking at all of these quilts for inspiration there was a ton of flea market fancy and I could always spot it. So just for giggles I did a search to see if any seeds had magically appeared out there on the world wide web. And would you believe it I found a fat quarter of pink seeds. Okay so this was my second choices as far as color way goes because I would love to have the orange seeds but the pink seeds are really great as well. Well I broke my one cardinal rule and paid $12 dollars for a fat quarter. Of course as soon as I hit the button I had buyers remorse but I've already done the math in my head 100 times over and have figured out how to fit this fabric into at least three quilts. Additional justification just because it makes me feel better is the fact that I didn't spend any of my "own" money I had a visa gift card still from Christmas. So I've forgiven myself for spending the money on something I really wanted and besides isn't that the real joy of Christmas gifts anyway, finding joy in what the person gives you.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Where do you get Inspiration

When I first became interested in quilting a little over a year ago now I spent tons of time online reading blogs and pouring over all of the advice. To afraid to actually cut into fabric and make something of my own. I came across this quilt that I was in LOVE with. I would look at it every two or three days and imagine making one of my own. At first I wasn't even sure I liked the fabric though I really liked the colors and knew it would match my master bedroom perfectly. A few months back I was happy to read a post on the original blog about how someone has asked for help and created a similar quilt with all of the credit being given to the original quilt. That made my heart sing because I have read tons of times on blogs about my fellow bloggers stumbling across replicas of their work with no credit being given. It has to leave a bad taste in your mouth which is why I try to always link back to original post and make sure even inspirational credit is given.

When Sarah posted this photo for the inspiration for her blocks for our bee-stitched group I thought I was dreaming. I had admired these two quilts for so long that I thought it was wonderful I was now going to have the opportunity to help create one. Here's the fabric that she sent.

In my blocks I really struggled because I felt like they needed more solids if they were going to be based around the original quilt designs. So I dug in my stash (it's pretty small still) and pulled out a Kona light tan (sorry I don't know the real name) to supplement the blocks. I like my second block a lot better than the first. The first one I made feels like something is missing to me but I'm not sure what it is. But then when I put the two side by side I think that I really like them together. So hopefully Sarah will too.

I am considering making one myself now with this collection. I think it still has the great colors of the original quilt and will match our bedroom well. And I think the patterns can be used in a minimal way that will flow well with the lines that I am looking for.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Flower in the Middle

I LOVE these blocks! Over in the Spider Web Bee it is Brioni's turn and she came up with one of the best solutions I have ever seen for hiding those kites that appear in the middle of Spider Web blocks. Fussy cut centers, can you believe it. Of course I am overly jealous because I am up next month and I have no idea what I am going to do for the middles of my blocks. I hate the way those kites look so I have to think of something. I'm open to any suggestions you guys have.

Tell me that flower isn't the cutest thing ever. I was really surprised to see how many colors were in the fabrics Brioni sent because in looking at her test blocks they looked super bright and full of orange and pink with just a hint of green. But the fabrics are actually slightly more muted then I thought and there was a lot of variety. Overall these blocks were much easier the second time around although I did learn that I was making a huge mistake. I realized that I had looked at the tutorial incorrectly and I had actually been lengthening my stitch instead of shortening it. Big OOPS on that one. So I went back over all of my seams with tighter stitches before I pulled off the paper backing.
My month is next and I am pretty sure I am only going to use pink and orange fabrics. And while I don't like the kites in the middle I am still considering using white so I get a lot of contrast. But I have about three weeks to figure it out so I guess we will see what I end up coming up with.