Wednesday, July 31, 2013

2013 NewFO Challenge - July Update

Wow! It is the end of July already - that was fast. The NewFO Challenge with Barbara over at Cat Patches is easy to do - just start a new project each month! Stop on over and see what everyone else has started this month.

I began a table runner that turned into a quilt! Coral Stars is pieced, quilted, and bound! It is done!

I appliquéd some dishtowels.

I began a quilt with string triangles while I was at a retreat. I'm not sure if it is done - I may make it larger.

At the same retreat, I pieced this baby quilt. It is now quilted and just needs binding!

Progress on earlier 2013 projects:
Black White Orange All Over is finished. 

Starry Night, started in May is finished!


Update on 2013 projects (BOM is in progress and up to date):
  • I still have a QOV to finish from February.
  • I need to finish the July triangle quilt.
  • And the July baby quilt.
  • All other 2013 projects are done!

Monday, July 29, 2013


Doreen over at Treadlemusic had a give-away to celebrate her 50th blog follower and my name was drawn! WooHoo! I won!

My prize arrived today. 

 Doreen sent me a 3-D mini table runner/wall hanging kit.

It looks like such fun and I love the colors! Look at those cute little 2 1/2" squares. The project will finish at 6" X 14".

I'm anxious to make it but I don't have time before our extended trip west. So it will go with us - it is small and perfect to take along. Thank you, Doreen!

Check out Treadlemusic. Doreen is "a quilter who rides motorcycle, living on a small hobby farm in southeastern Minnesota. Grandmother and Great Grandmother and now retired." I think she is a blessing to all who know her.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

A Spur of the Moment Quilt Retreat

There are four of us that often do quilting things together. We all work or did work in education. Last February we all went on a retreat to Memory Lane. You can read about it here and here.

The other day, Sandy decided the summer was winding down too fast and that we all needed a retreat before school started and before DH and I headed west. Of course, we ALL agreed. We narrowed the possible time down to just a handful of days and the stars must have been aligned because Memory Lane was available for the three days we wanted! 

Memory Lane Crafting Retreat
Memory Lane Crafting Retreat
We each packed a few clothes, a little food with the thought of eating evening meals out, and lots of projects to work on. 

I sat in the same place as before at the far end of these tables.
My area is back by the window.
And this was my view out the window.
Early morning at Memory Lane
We were able to check in mid-morning Wednesday and so we had 3 days and 2 nights of fun! A professional photographer arrived at the same time as we did Wednesday morning and helped us unload! He then took photos of us working - there will be an article about Memory Lane in a publication next spring and we may be in some of the photos! After he left, we really got busy.

Barb brought along a few works in progress and really was productive. 

Barb finished this hanging.

Barb finished piecing and put the borders on this.

Barb finished this quilt top.
Krista made fantastic use of her time too.
Krista pieced this entire quilt.
Krista also made this entire quilt top. She still needs to appliqué some Chicago Blackhawks graphics on it.
Krista also pieced this entire quilt!
Sandy was working on a black, white, gray, and yellow quilt. You can see a few pieces on the near end of the table. I can't wait to see it together - it will be striking!
Sandy's workspace
On Wednesday night, Sandy had a little problem with a rotary cutter - ouch! She slice the side off of her finger - super ouch! 

Sandy's finger with the bleeding somewhat under control. 
Needless to say, Sandy did not accomplish a huge amount but she was able to get all of the squares of her quilt pieced.

I started a string triangle quilt. I might leave it this size or make it a little larger - I haven't decided.
I like to sew in bare feet!
And I pieced this baby quilt. I'll trim off the edges after I quilt it.
Baby Quilt
We had a wonderful time and hope to go back to Memory Lane again but next time we are hoping for NO accidents!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Yes, I'm a PFC with a STABLE!

This was recently shared on Facebook 
and I thought I'd better share 
in case you haven't seen it.

I have some UFOs, a few WIPs, a couple of PHDs 
and a few PIGS upstairs in my sewing rooms. 
There are a number of NESTYs and one WOMBAT. 
Yes, I am a PFC with my very own STABLE!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Starry Night is finished!

I began Starry Night in May. It is from a kit that I bought in 2010. I love the bright colors against the dark blue. It reminds me of an Amish quilt.

No flower baskets in the this garden since we are leaving soon.
This quilt is about 55" square and I haven't decided if it will be donated or not. 

The back - it really is square and does lie flat. I just flipped in on the grass.
I machine quilted this quilt. The dark blue areas are stippled. When I was trying to decide what to do inside the stars, I  watched a Fons and Porter Show on PBS. Marianne Fons was talking with longarm quilter Dawn Cavanaugh. Dawn said you only needed to be able to do 5 stitches to machine quilt - a straight line, a teardrop, a hook, an S curve and a circle. That sounds pretty simple but after 18 months, I still don't feel like I've mastered any of these stitches! Dawn was demonstrating each stitch and when she did the hook, she echoed it. It reminds me of a snail stitch that I once tried. The curves also remind me of a spiral.  I decided to use that stitch in the stars and it really added texture to this quilt!

When I quilted the stars, I did change thread color on top of the quilt. But I only used thread that I owned so the thread shows a little more on a couple of the fabric colors. 

We'll be leaving for a couple of months soon so I have been pushing to finish some projects. And this quilt finishes the list of what I really wanted done!

Now it will be easier to start new projects - maybe even purchase more fabric!!!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Christmas in July Camp

Today was Christmas in July Camp at Lucky 2B Quilting. Quilting with friends, both new and old, is always a fun day. And we had yummy Christmas cookies to munch on!

I decided to applique some dishtowels. I actually bought the towels and pattern a year ago at the Christmas in July Camp. While I was going through some quilting projects last week, I found them. I bought some new things this year – hope it doesn’t take me a year to start them!

Anyway, when I left camp, I had four towels done. They each looked like this:
Tonight, while packing up a few things for a retreat, I realized that I did not make the noses for the Santas! So I made them tonight. Now they look better.


They are rather cute!

Oh, did I mention a retreat? Yup, some friends and I are leaving Wednesday and will quilt until late Friday afternoon. It is definitely a quilting week! And if that’s not enough, I had an email when I got home today  saying that I had won a little quilting project on a friend’s blog! I’ll tell you more about that when I get the project and can show it to you. 

It is already a great week and it is only Monday!

Knitted Lucy Hat done!

I saw this hat in a knitting magazine and I decided that I had to make it. The Lucy Hat pattern by Carina Spencer is free on This is the pattern photo. 

The construction was new to me - starting with 4 pearl rows and then a semi circle worked in short rows. Next came the band with a woven appearance and last the crown decreases with a circular appearance. It wasn't difficult to do - just new to me.

When I finished knitting, I had to block the hat. It looks a little strange!

Then it was time to turn up the brim and stitch it in place. I'm sure this photo would look better with a head in the hat!

I used Galway worsted yarn by Plymouth Yarn. It is 100% wool, hand washable, dry flat.

This did not turn out exactly like I expected but it will be fine!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

A Christmas Bucket

I'm going to a Christmas in July Camp on Monday. I finally figured out what I made last year - a Take 5 Quilt that I never finished and probably never will! That is a little unusual around here! I really did/do not like the fabrics. Wonder what I was thinking when I bought the fabric?!  Anyway on that same day, I bought the book Hugs and Holly by Kelly Meuller of The Wooden Bear.  I liked the pattern for Santa's Cookie Bucket - the pattern for this little bucket that I just made.

The bottom finishes at a 5" square and the sides finish at 6" tall. The pattern uses wooden buttons on the side - I used leather buttons cause I didn't have any wood ones!

The pattern has an optional insert with a drawstring to close the bucket. That's looked rather neat, too.

When I bought the book, I thought maybe I'd make these as gift baskets last year. It didn't happen! Not sure it will this year either but it is a cute little bucket.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Coral Stars is finished!

I've been pushing a little this month to get some things finished. So not only did I begin the 50" square quilt that I named Coral Stars, I finished it!
Coral Stars
I began this quilt earlier this month using my Quick Curve Ruler and fabric that I bought on our trip to Elkhart County, Indiana, in May.

Back of Coral Stars
The quilt is machine quilted - I did loopy flowers in the diamonds and some echo stitching in the corners. There are feathers going around the 'diamonds' and lots of paisley. 

loopy flowers quilted in the center of the diamonds
echo stitching around diamond and in corners and feathers going around diamond 
lots of paisley stitching in the sashing and borders
I bought the fabric because I fell in love with it.  I knew at that time that this would be a donation quilt - it just doesn't fit in the style of our home. I've really enjoyed making it though!

Friday, July 12, 2013

A long morning...

Yesterday Ray and I went to a Medicare class. I might have been more confused after the class - hard to tell! We are both turning 65 this fall. We are retired educators in Illinois under two different retirement systems and both of us pay for our health insurance through these systems. If we don't have Medicare, our insurance rates almost triple. Since we are retired educators in Illinois, we are a "special case" when it comes to Medicare.

We had to make sure that our insurance will continue as our supplemental insurance - no problem. The problem is with the prescription coverage - we have prescription coverage now and JUST need a letter saying that our prescription insurance is as good or better than Medicare Part D - a letter or note of credible coverage. Oh my - what a problem! I talked to people ALL morning.  After a couple of hours, I spent another 43 minutes with the last wonderful lady that hunted all of those 43 minutes, I finally had the number of the State of Illinois office that I needed. In case you ever need to call the State Medicare office, it is 800-442-1300 or 217-782-7007. 

Well I called the number and in less than one minute, I had the information I needed! We need to call and get a letter of credible coverage when, if ever, we leave our "just as good as" prescription coverage to go to Part D! Now, wouldn't you think at least 1 out of the 7 people I talked with earlier this morning would know that? Or maybe the person who taught the class? Or did I not know the right question to ask? Well, at least we know now!

All that is left for us to do is to sign up for Medicare. We fall into another "special case" and can't sign up online. So we have an  appointment in a few weeks. And we expect smooth sailing...

In other news: While I was on the phone today, Ray turned my recliner completely over and found the elusive knitting needle! Woo Hoo!

Thursday, July 11, 2013


Where is it? When I went to bed Tuesday night, I put both needles and my knitting right here.

When I got up Wednesday, my knitting and only one needle were there???!

I cleaned off the table - even the bottom! I looked under the table, in my knitting bag, in my chair, under my chair, along the edges of the carpet. Then I looked in every place again and again! Where is the missing needle?

I went upstairs to the knitting needle drawer. No extra needles there - of course not - how could it have gotten there?! I picked up a size 4 circular needle and came back downstairs. I knit the next row onto the circular needle.

I went to bed Wednesday night and put my knitting right here.

When I got up today, it was still there - whew! But that straight 10" needle is STILL missing!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Purple knitted hat and scarf

I just realized that I didn't post pictures of the purple diamond hat and scarf. The color is more purple than the photos appear.
I used 2 skeins of  Plymouth Yarn Encore Chunky yarn  and the Diamonds Hat and Scarf pattern by Susie Bonell - it is free on  
I had to adjust the hat pattern and make it longer. I tried 9 extra rows and then frogged that and did just 4 extra rows.
These will both be a donation to our church bazaar.


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