Monday, December 31, 2012

The Christmas Quilts - the 2nd

I'm showing the first born's quilt 2nd, because 
I made the 2nd born's first ;-)

The idea for Casey's quilt came to me by way of (what else?) a Kaffe Fassett quilt called 'Dark Windows' shown below.

I decided to reorient the windows by rotating the quilt 90 degrees ccw, thereby creating a "shelf" for every row.  Each shelf and wall will be computer related, like this:
  Casey's interest in languages and computers came as early as five when he enjoyed copying Greek and Hebrew letters from a concordance.  At six, he typed out programs on an old Vic20 to make the ball bounce.  At 29, it's no surprise that he's a software development manager.        

 Indeed, I found the binary and equations fabric at
were just the ticket!

I fussy-cut these 2-inch Mario characters to use as corner posts with the sashing.

Working into the night on Alice's long arm, "Meg" .

He has a couple of cats, so I thought it'd be fun to have one looking for a "mouse", lol!

Those 2 screws on Meg appear as eyes, and as hard as I worked her, I think there would be a little grimace below them!
I chose a swirl pattern on the sashing and stitched in the ditch on the diagonal seams of the blocks.

Notice a white cat bottom left.  I finished with musical note borders and added the gold for size and accent.

A surprised and delighted son!

This was such a fun quilt to make, and I hope to do another "windows" piecing again.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

The Christmas Quilts

 At last!  After months of secrecy it's "safe" to blog about the gift quilts for my sons.  Christian, my 2nd born, turned 27 a few days ago (I had him when I was 8 :-)

I thought it a good idea to upcycle/repurpose his tee shirts, commemorating his interests This will be like a warm scrapbook!  Chef, photography enthusiast, and former daily skateboarder, (tho recently he stated he was about to go "grip it and rip it"). 

A few months ago, I managed to clandestinely obtain several shirts he was throwing out, and the design wall began to fill up fast!

After gathering a few more, I didn't quite have enough for a 5x5 block quilt.

  to the rescue!!!

This NC based company will print on Kona cotton and 6 other fine materials, from submissions by unknown designers everywhere!  One that I chose was a skateboarder, which appears to be him!

Also included in the quilt are shirts and blocks commemorating our years living in Russia.


(It reads:  Whole Milk Condensed with Sugar)

I added solid grey sashing and then borders representing his musical abilities
I stitched in the ditch with the guidance of friend Alice, on her long arm.  Most tee shirt quilts don't have quilting on the blocks.

The quilt size wound up 90 x 90.
 He was delighted and surprised!

Quilt #2 next!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

A Few of My Favorite Things

I was mia in November on blogger, but still sewing all along.  Announcements and photos will have to wait til the New Year because my projects are

Decorated a week ago, tree and outdoor star.    Here's an artifact:  My childhood stocking.

Holey now, but such fond memories won't allow me to toss it out.

I was presented this angel ornament at age 3 by my Sunday School teacher.  It's been a treasure all my life, and still has the original clapper string!

My dear mother loved making things, and as a child of the Depression, never threw anything away.  She would always say: "I can make something out of it!"

And she did... a half of walnut shell was transformed into a tree ornament.

A burned out bulb became a santa.

Mama liked doing needlepoint and would use up every little scrap of plastic canvas:

A Christmas mouse

Squeeze his jaws to open and place a tiny treasure.

You've got mail!

Other favorites:
This handmade one was a going away gift, when our time was up in Russia.  
She's beautiful!

I adore these little guys, also from Russia.  Each one has the name of a Russian city or village.

My cousin Chris is an artist, and this wonderful okra pod ornament was tied to my gift one year.
She painted the face beautifully. 
Who knew I would one day enjoy okra!?!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

FNSI OCT: Herringbone Baby Quilt report

Thanks to Bobbi and Heidi for hosting the Friday Night Sew In, and I for one was glad it was postponed til this week!

I had the flimsy together before we left for FALL VACA on Oct. 3rd, but no time to shoot pics of it and post.
(Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain...OR his nice legs!)

Last night, I pieced the border and attached it.  I like this "reversy" pattern, with its wrong sides every other row.

Then I chose some fabrics to make pillowcases for gifts.  It's a good day for that project as I watch the Sandy rains...
Stay Safe!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012


14 days ago, we landed in the tropical paradise of

The beautiful Arenal Lodge is located in the northern region, several hours from the airport in San Jose, found ONLY with the use of the GPS. 
Check those switchback roads...oh, it was quite the adventure!

The Lodge is named for the Volcano visible from our bed.

The room was very spacious and dark with the beautiful native wood.

After the clouds cleared, from our balcony.

 We rode up and down steep mountains on horseback
with the expertise of our new friend and guide, Miguel.

And every day fresh towels were folded on the bed to portray an animal.

Don't cha just love those cute lil eyebrows, made from fern leaves!?

More to come in Part 2 ~ real native plants and wildlife.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

FNSI: Herringbone Baby Quilt

"Friday Night Sew In" 
is hosted by Heidi and her cousin Bobbi, and this month there are over 120 participants!

I continued work on piecing another top, using diamonds leftover from the Pinafore Print Quilt.

As with the previous quilt, this design is from the same Kaffe Fassett book:

and is named "Herringbone Baby Quilt", but I think it would also do as a lap quilt.

Every other vertical row uses the wrong side of the fabric.  I love how it gives such dimension to the top.  And let me tell ya, it seemed ca-razy to be sewing them "wrong sides together"!  Had to keep reminding myself!

I've sewn all of the diamonds together vertically, now to join those rows...should go fast!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Mystery Quilt

In early spring, we sorted out my late MIL's effects, but just last week I opened a cute little retro overnight case that belonged to her...

 and looky what was inside...

 A little old baby quilt!

I seem to remember seeing this little quilt a time or two long, long ago.  Notice the well-lovedness of it.

But WHO loved it???  And WHO made it?  There are no labels anywhere :-( and my MIL did not sew.  Mr. T doesn't remember it.
I sure would like to know its history.  

After a careful washing, I began to investigate what it might take to restore.

Something I'd never seen in quilting:  Under the worn/torn blocks was another block
 and look how fresh it appears!

~ no, I wasn't seeing the back side, but 2 blocks had been stacked and sewn together.  No wonder this lil quilt is so H-E-A-V-Y!
Another double block.

The binding is badly frayed, so I've decided to remove it and hopefully replace it with something appropriate to the era.

Maybe I'll find a vintage sheet or some old clothing to piece a binding.  
There are a few projects ahead of this one, but it's in line now!