Sunday, April 23, 2017

I'm on a roll...............


We had awesome classes yesterday and YES - I will get the photos edited and posted.  Part of the problem is getting the time to edit the pictures. And let's not forget about sorting the "few" pictures that are currently on my camera card. There is almost one year's worth of pictures on that card.  I'm thinking a few minutes (probably a lot more) and on my newer computer, I could download and at least sort the photos into categories. That wouldn't be hard to sort - there are only a few categories - dogs, vacation, QUILTsocial, quilts, retreats. Easy -- now to find a few minutes to do that.

Then someone had the brilliant idea of installing Photoshop on my work laptop so when I'm travelling and have down time on the plane or evening in the hotel, I could get all the photos edited. Hmmm - that does sound like a great plan. And I do want to update my version of Photoshop Elements that I'm using.  Maybe, just maybe, that could happen before I leave?

After class, I zipped home and got right to work on my projects.   I'm happy to say that I'm making good progress. Am I going to get it all done before I leave?  Not sure, but I'm going to make every effort. It's called priorizing which I'm NOT good at, but there is a time crunch - I'm good in that kind of situation. If I were going to be a doctor, I'd be good in the trauma unit, a GP - not so much!

I started off with a few HST and flying geese.

A gaggle of geese and a lot of HST

And when it was all finished, I had made over 150 HST units - all trimmed and ready to sew into 5 blocks.

Trimmings from the HST


The five blocks are completed and I hope to at least get the borders on all five of them. That is a MINIMUM before I close shop tonight - more would be better. Don't forget, I'm not leaving until Tuesday morning so I do have an extra day, but I also have paperwork stuff to do.

The flying geese are making good progress as well. There are seven flying geese sections and THREE are completed. The rest are in bits and pieces.  Once those are done - the rest is easy and as I'm sewing, I'm trying to figure out how to quickly custom quilt this one. It doesn't need to be fancy, but I was hoping to do something more than an overall quilting pattern.  The plan is to attempt to get it loaded just after lunch.  Quilt in the afternoon, bind tonight and get those borders on the others.  That is the plan and NOTHING is going to deviate me from that.

Like the other night when I was getting that second customer quilt done.  The darn long arm reached a point where it wasn't advancing - same thing that happened a couple of months ago.  I fixed it, but obviously didn't tighten the screw well enough.  Got out the Allen Key wrenches and that thing was soon fixed and I was back on the road.  I have several sewing machines so if one isn't performing, then I move onto the next one, although that has never happened. Although I was having an issue this morning. After a slight adjustment to the sewing machine, all was solved.  You will have to wait for QUILTsocial blog posts in May to see what happened. It's all about knowing your skills, knowing your equipment, NOT having children to bother you, DH knows better and the dogs - well, they've already been to the dog park. Played with the ball a LOT and hopefully they are tired enough to not bother me.

Oh yes -  my big iron is starting to act up. I've had the darn thing for years and years. I love it, but I do believe the steam button needs to be replaced - every once in a while it goes crazy and won't shut off. No worries - I dug out my cordless iron. I need to make an appointment to drop off that iron.  But see what I mean - NOTHING is going to get in my way!

And if the power goes out, I have a treadle in the front hall although I've never used one!

On that note - I'm out of here.


Ciao!!!!

Saturday, April 22, 2017

One step at a time......


We're going to take this one step at a time.  Let's not panic, let's not lose focus, let's see how to break this mess that I've gotten myself into down into bite sized pieces.

First things first - I now have the paperwork for two of the four remaining magazine quilts lined up. The deadlines are prominently displayed on the front of both and thankfully one of the sweet editors gave me a wee bit of an extension. That helps!  You see the darn problem is that I'm off to Paducah next week so there goes my evening sewing time.

The paperwork for the remaining two quilts will be dealt with on Monday. I will create a folder on my desk for these contracts/jobs to call home and mark those deadlines into the calendar and I should be good to go for future.

Now, what happened yesterday?  Well, I got the TWO customer quilts done that needed to be done. I trimmed the second one up this morning. The other will get trimmed later today.

Customer quilt - number one - DONE

Customer quilt - number two - DONE


I still have a few more customer quilts to work on and I know there are a couple in the pipeline.  I need to get them done!  At least the ones that are in my possession. We're talking a single digit number so that's good news.

I have about 15 minutes of prep to finish and all the classes for today will be prepped, although I cannot seem to find my darn pattern for one of them.  Seriously???  How does this happen?  I even have TWO copies of the book and neither one is in the bag where all the rest of the supplies are.  I don't get it - where the heck could the darn things be?  Everything else is accounted for - it must have got mixed up when I packed for the sewing retreat, but I was certain that everything had been unpacked. Obviously NOT!

Now for the story that I've been promising you. The story about the office dog.  I won't go into details - they are not important.  Bottom line, mention of a dog for the office was brought up.  You know - dogs bring down your heart rate and keep everyone calm and all the other good things about dogs. Let's be realistic, having a real dog in the office is not going to happen, although I have offered to take in Murphy and Lexi - that would cure anyone of wanting to have a dog!  They are just two crazy loony tunes.

I will retake the pictures as they are kind of dark.  The poor dog doesn't have a name yet, but isn't it cute!!!

The office dog

Sporting the beautiful Sesquicentennial collection for a collar

The dog is made from Northcott Stonehenge and ColorWorks Concepts and Sesquicentennial for the collar.  The pattern was a really simple one from Carol's Zoo - that I happened to have in my pattern stash.

No name yet - any suggestions???  For the moment, DOG sits on my desk. And we chat. DOG is a good dog, he sits, doesn't bark, doesn't beg for food, doesn't run away, is always there when you call. The office dog is a good dog!  Unlike some dogs I know!

On that note - I've got 15 minutes of prep to finish and then home for a marathon sewing and quilting session which I'm quite looking forward to!

Have a great day!!

Ciao!

Friday, April 21, 2017

Now it's time to panic!


I don't panic - I may get hyper (just like Murphy!), but I don't panic. I just move a lot faster and there isn't a spare moment for a wasted movement.

Here's what happened yesterday. I received an e-mail from a magazine editor. "We haven't heard from you - how is that quilt coming along?"  "No problem", I replied, "It should be shipping to you by Monday next week.". Since it was the end of the day, I shut my computer down. As it was powering down, I realized that this editor was talking about a DIFFERENT quilt than the one that I had in my head. (I've got FIVE quilts on the go for magazines) OH NO--  That means that there is ONE MORE quilt that needs to be made - by MONDAY!   But we're not going to panic!   No siree!!!!!!

There is a lesson to be learned from this - made a list and put those darn deadlines on it!

Part of both lap quilts are done - and I did some cutting this morning.  Looks absolutely awesome. I can't wait to see it finished.

I did get part of that customer quilt quilted last night. Tonight will be the final part and then one more quilt to do before bedtime. Quick prep for the classes tomorrow and then home to sew like a crazy person!

I took pictures of the office dog - I really did. I even edited the pictures and then like an idiot, I forgot to upload the pictures. ACK!!!!   And here I thought I was being so smart.  That means you don't get to see the office dog until tomorrow.

And on that note, I've a ton of things to get done today and there is NO time to waste.

Have a super day!!!

Ciao!

Thursday, April 20, 2017

When the planets are aligned (or there is a deadline looming!)

I know - you don't have to tell me!  I just came away from 10 days of sewing at two different retreats, yet there I was last night madly sewing a sample that needs to be photographed for a magazine. Of course - it's urgent!  There are a few more things that need to be done by Monday evening - just a few. The total number of which I will NOT divulge to protect my reputation.

The mini-quilt I worked on was one that I just recently made, but it was too big!  Silly me - didn't think about what I was doing.  So the new resized center was already done and the pattern was written. Last night, I added the borders. Well, that went well. Let's get that BRAND NEW sewing machine out (no - I didn't buy one - it's for QUILTsocial but I'm not sharing yet - however it sews like a dream!).   Found a scrap of batting that was the right size, basted (with the iron), quilted with invisible thread on the top and the bottom -   NO broken needles. Matter of fact that machine seemed to be taunting me.  "Sew faster - sew faster!" And yet I was wary because of my previous experience with my own machine. But it worked like a charm. Let's trim and get that narrow binding on.  I cut the binding at 2" - something I NEVER do.  I was so focused and it went on beautifully. It was only when I was done that I realized that I had sewn it on the FRONT of the mini-quilt, not the back. That meant that unless I took it off, I would have to hand stitch it.

Oh crap - the hockey game is on, DH is watching it - I might as well go and join him.  So I did. I even had the hanging sleeve on and all got hand stitched in place - just minutes after the hockey game ended. I have to say that I ended up watching the game by myself - imagine - ME watching TV alone - only because he had to leave to get to the airport. I even managed to turn the TV off myself, but if I hadn't, I'm sure that Murphy would have appreciated that I left the TV on - she seems to love watching TV.

Yeah - all that remains is a label, but that won't be in the photos so I'm home free on this one.  Now to get the guys to take the pictures today and I'm good on this one.  Check, check and check!!!!

Then onto the next urgent things to be done.  I fixed the dog collar for the office dog. More on that another day!  I made the bottom insert cover for TWO bags - had to cut the plasticore and make the sleeve. Those are done.

Cut out the next mini project - hope to sew that today and get it photographed.  Got some supplies lined up for the next project.  Imagine - I need TWO  (not one, but TWO) cream zippers that are 14" long.  Oh, shoot- what are the chances of finding those in the zipper box cause who has time to go buy zippers.

Turns out the chances are very high.  Right on top - there were two zippers - EXACTLY what I needed.   YEAH!!!!!

TWO zippers - exactly what I need
See what I mean?  I didn't even have to dump this out. Opened the box and VOILA - two zippers!

The zipper box


So what was the other thing that I received yesterday????  Something very yummy.


Cookies

And not just any cookies - NO - these are cycling cookies.

Cycling cookies!!!

They came special delivery all the way from Vancouver. A big THANK YOU to M (whom you've all thought has probably died since you never hear about her anymore).   I had ONE last night and they were fresh and very yummy indeed.

A super, super productive 24 hours.  Now if only I would have done this while I was at the retreat?  That would make life way too simple.  Not to mention that I have two quilts to quilt by Saturday AM - one is half done on the machine and MUST be finished tonight (despite the fact that I have a meeting to go to) and homework to prep for the weekend.  Sunday - I'll be quarantined in the studio to get a lap quilt done in a day!

Most of what I'm working on is for Paducah which is NEXT WEEK, although there are two magazine submissions happening at the same time.  One is done except photos - the other - well I got all the fabric organized yesterday!  I'm not asking for sympathy - I'm just a procrastinator!  Besides - I love working under pressure and work better and faster when there is a deadline. Otherwise, I'm just coasting.

BUT - If you're going to Paducah - there is an amazing series of videos on this link to help you plan your trip.  Wait until you see where we're staying!  I thought it was weird - now I know it is. Very unusual and I was certain there was a mistake. If you are coming to Paducah, don't forget to come and visit the Northcott booth.  We are in the Pavillion, otherwise known at the bubble. Our booth number is 4715. We have free stuff to giveaway and you have to come and see what I've been working on that is part of our free stuff!   I'll take pictures for those that can't make it.

Going to be fun - once we get there!

Have a super day!

Ciao!!!






Wednesday, April 19, 2017

On your MARK!


Just had to watch the Libs Elliot/Absolut video again this morning.  I LOVE that video. I think it's beautiful, I love the collaboration and I'm darn proud to be a Canadian!  Now, what other Canadian products can we put a quilt on the label of???  How about French's ketchup??  Let's get our thinking caps on and get quilts everywhere. Perhaps one day, quilts will have the level of respect that the quilting industry deserves. 

If you missed the video yesterday, here's the link again.  It's really cool. 

Before I went on retreat, I was madly searching for some fabric.  I never did find the fabric, but yesterday, I managed to snag new pieces of what was missing. However, in the midst of searching, I managed to find the Tuffet pattern that I had lost. I've since had to buy a new one so now I have TWO!  Isn't that always the way!


Missing tuffet pattern is now found!


Yes - I think it would be a great idea to keep a list of all the things that are lost in a year and then keep track of how many get found!  It's all a matter of keeping things where they belong.  I do a pretty good job of doing that, but every once in a while, something goes missing.  I think I've always been able to find everything - eventually. And I have to laugh when I see where the missing things end up!  This tuffet pattern was in an IKEA bag with odds and ends from cleaning off those darn work tables. But NOT in the same place, I found the missing Halloween fabric!

I think it would be good one day, to go through all the stuff on the floor and in that IKEA bag, sort it, tag it, bag it, label it or whatever so that when I do want something in the future, I know exactly where it is. In an ideal world, I'd be able to finish the stuff off, but that isn't going to happen for a while!


As part of my tidying up, I have several gifts that people gave me.  Look at this fabulous tea towel with a bicycle embroidered on it.  I know - almost too pretty to use. BUT - if I keep this and never use it, what's the point of getting it?  I know --- so the bike towel will be in the kitchen tonight!

Bike tea towel!
I also got this beautiful bookmark.  Amazing how many people don't read real books anymore, but I would be lost without a real book.  I'm OK with electronic, but I forget to read the darn things!  And you can't ever use cool bookmarks like this.

Beaded bookmark
I also received this cool little pouch.  But really?  Hellraiser?  OK - it's appropriate! I have learned from various scenarios throughout my life that I'm a bit more of a risk taker than some. I may not do some of the craziest things, but I'm definitely NOT at the bottom of the scale for taking risks.

Hellraiser?  Hell yes!
A bit thank you to Katheleen, Claudette, and Susan. I love the gifts and they are all going to be used!!!!!

Remember the item I posted the other day - the button, magnet, and ribbon???


What is this????

Well, Sylvia responded that it's a bookmark. Hmmm - now that's a neat idea. I've been searching the internet trying to find an example of it, but no luck.  I've seen other similar bookmarks where the ribbon is long enough that it goes around the pages and attaches on the front of the book.  This one is too short for that. BUT I figured that it works like this - you undo the magnet part and use the ribbon as the bookmark - the button sticks out the top of the book and the little knobby thing sticks out the bottom of the book. When you're reading your book, you can attach the magnets together and it becomes a bracelet that you wear so you don't lose the bookmark. However since I FOUND the bookmark, you can still lose the darn thing!!!!

Am I in the ball park on that???

On that note, I've got a super busy day again.  And better get started.

Have a super day!

Ciao!

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Collaboration

I was super excited to see the collaboration with Absolut and Libs Elliot.  If you don't know Libs, she is a modern quilter (from Toronto) who makes amazing quilts using some sort of coding system with the computer.  Check out this link to see the collaboration.    Make sure you watch the video!!!!

Libs has been very active in promoting her work to the NON-quilting community and has done a fairly decent job of it. NO --- I retract that statement - if you look at her web page and check under PRESS, she's done a FABULOUS job at putting quilts out there. So it's no surprise that Libs hooked up with Absolut to do the label.  We need MORE people like Libs to promote our industry.  

I wouldn't call Libs a typical quilter - she is an artist - her medium is fabric. That is different than being a quilter!


I survived last weekend and then had a trunk show last night! Which I enjoyed - more on that another day. But I'll be glad to get home today - guess what - I'll be home ALONE all evening. There are left-overs in the fridge, but I've got a hankering for a damn hot dog!  So I'll be looking for the nearest hot dog cart on my way home!   DH would be mortified if he knew, but what he doesn't know - well it won't kill him!

I was trying to tidy up my desk the other day and realized that I've been neglecting one of my daily calendars - the word calendar.  I'm happy to note that there are words in that calendar that I know. Not only do I know them, but I know how to use them!

Out of the four words below, I know three of them!  Yeah!  How many do you know??


"New" words


Now I need your help. I came across this thing recently but have NO IDEA what it's for.  There is a button on one end (with a magnet) which attaches to another magnet at the end of the ribbon.  So it creates a loop.  Could be a tie back for a curtain, but it's very small.  Any ideas?

What is this?

And just so you know, I'm not as inept at technology as you think I am. I'm blaming all the mishaps on my computer. The other day I got in the car and saw a message on my Garmin (GPS) that I need to log onto the computer and update the maps. Oh - how do I do that?

I found a cable and hooked it up to my computer. I went to the website that came up on the GPS screen and downloaded the software. The program wouldn't open. I downloaded it again. It still wouldn't open. I tried a third time, a fourth time and by this time, I thought something must be wrong.

I tried on my other laptop and VOILA - worked the first time.  Which means that my home laptop is probably too old or the operating system needs to be upgraded!

What do you think???  Has this laptop seen better days???

The keys and the mouse pad are a tad worn!

Yes - I should be using the new computer now that I have all the software loaded. It's habit!  Just so easy to sit down at what I know than fiddle with what I don't.  I guess I need to just shut this thing down and keep it off.  But first, I need to move my photo editing software to the new computer and then I think I'll be good to go.

Well - there is a lot going on.  I made a tiny inroad into the mess in the studio this morning and tonight, I'll be hitting it with a vengeance.  There are quilts to be quilted, blocks to be made, homework to be prepped!

On that note, I'm out of here!

Have a super day and don't forget to buy your bottle of vodka to celebrate drinking and quilts and collaboration.

Ciao!!!!

Monday, April 17, 2017

Motivational Monday - I'm making progress!!!

After my SECOND 5-day sewing retreat in 4 weeks, I would certainly hope I could report that I'm making progress. It's amazing how much time everything takes.  A simple task of making flying geese takes hours, cutting and trimming -  several more hours and before you know it - the day is over!

I did get most of my stuff unpacked last night, simply because I need to continue to work on it. The disappointing thing was I was certain that I had tidied up the studio before I left, but alas I had not!

But I'll worry about that another day.  Here are some of the things that I worked on at the retreat. 

The first one is the mystery quilt from our guild. Normally I wouldn't post it until the actual reveal, but the organizers revealed their quilts at our last meeting so I'm not going to hide it!  Remember that I had sewed that block backward?  Because these blocks are batiks, I took it apart, flipped the pieces over (that triangle business that I said was backward? nope - the piece was backward - wrong side out when I snapped the photo!). So I got that block finished and then sewed the top together. 


Mystery quilt top
Now you'll notice that you can't see the edges of the quilt. And that's because I'm working on the borders.  Yes - I spent a lot more time hacking and slashing with some leftovers and part of the border is on. BUT you won't get to see that until the reveal at our June meeting. Gosh - there might even be time for me to quilt it?  I'm not sure, but the top should be finished - I hope!

For those of you who did the batik exchange years ago - this quilt is the FIRST of many projects that I plan to make with those strips.


Then as  my enders and leaders project, I got the first two little pieces sewn together on 120 blocks (I think that is the number)

Step One done
This is my February UFO - a little behind, but I'm making progress and that's all that counts. It's no longer shelved and because of the Task Master - I will continue to work on it.

The next section is almost finished. I say almost - I haven't counted the number of units already completed so I may still have a few more to go.

Step Two is in progress


Then I became obsessed. The final class for Fancy Forest is on Saturday.  Wouldn't it be nice to get all the blocks done  - heck - it would be nice to get the quilt top done!

All the pieces (MOST of the pieces) were cut out. The Owl blocks were already sewn together as were the Bunnies.

I took ONE group per day and focused on it until they were done!

Fancy Forest blocks
This was an incredible amount of work. I did production style sewing of the blocks, but there was a ton of stitching and flipping. And dealing with a LOT of different fabrics.  It was a challenge and I worked mostly after dinner when my brain was already tired!

The butterflies were the worst for me. I mixed up the colors in two rows and I was going to leave it that way, but then common sense prevailed and I was able to fix it with little fanfare, but it still took a lot of time.

Bottom line - all the blocks (except ONE) are done!!!!!


One hedgehog needs to be finished
I didn't have enough fabric when I was cutting. And no time to find a substitute before I left. So last night I went through the orange bins and found something.  I laughed when I found the fabric on the right - same pattern - different color.  The one I'm going to use is not quite the same, but CLOSE enough.

Substitute fabrics
I will be teaching Fancy Forest again at The Hobby Horse.  The dates are May 28 and June 11th.  The shop is closed on Monday, but I would call soon to get a spot - I hear it's almost full.

Then I got up-to-date with Quilter's Patch.  I now have five blocks done.

Tulips from Quilter's Patch

I did get another block done but it's the homework for this week so no posting that before the class!  And the second block is cut out but it will be ready for class on Saturday. And please don't tell me that there is a mistake in the above block. That is my way of personalizing the block! 😊

I did other things at the retreat - like sets of flying geese for some upcoming quilts for magazines, another small quilt for another magazine and probably a couple more things that I've forgotten.  But it was great.

The Task Master and I had a little chat. She is NOT happy, but she is happier!  I need to book a day that I can go back and get caught up on all those silly things that have been languishing in the book. And I haven't booked anything for the coming week that isn't on the urgent list. The only thing remaining is to create a bigger list - well not bigger, but a list of those projects that HAVE to be done.  Then I can only work on those.  That needs to happen before I sit down with the Task Master this week.  I have some classes and events coming up that require some work.

I do have to say that getting my classes prepped BEFORE the night before has been great. I just need to expand on that for other things.

How is everyone else making out?  Some of the projects you have posted in the Facebook group are amazing!  If I wasn't trying to get things finished, I'd be scoping out a couple of those projects myself. But I'm really trying to be good.

Keep up the good work everyone - I'm super impressed!

Have a super day!

Ciao!

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Retreat Day Three and Day Four


If I don't do the blog FIRST thing, it will get forgotten in all the excitement of the retreat.

A different group of people - well half from other retreats and the other half are new to this house, and oh my - what fun! We had our games night the other night where we learned a few things about each other that we didn't know before. Thankfully it was all good and clean, but it could have gone south pretty quickly. That's based strictly on some of the conversations I've heard. I think some of us have some pretty colorful backgrounds, but I'm not going to mention any names to protect the innocent  - right Shelly?

We've eaten like kings which is the norm.  Good food and pretty darn healthy except for that giant apple pie with ice cream. Alas, the ice cream was finished up last night so there is NOTHING for Ronda and myself to share today before we leave. Although I'm sure there will be something in the fridge that we can fight over.

However because we were one person short, we decided to head out to dinner last night to a real restaurant. That was the first time in THIRTY retreats! Oh, what fun! And not only the fact that we were one person short did we go out, but we have a certain retreat member who is a Leafs fan and so going to dinner allowed her to watch at least one period of the hockey game. After we got back to the retreat house, Ronda watched/listened to the game on her phone. I went to bed during the first overtime period and I have no idea this morning who won. Since I did NOT hear any wild cheering last night, I'm going to guess that they lost. Which is a shame that they have now gone into overtime TWICE - well, better than being shut out!    (IMPORTANT UPDATE -  they won!!!!)

We had a lot of rain yesterday morning and I see it is pouring again this morning. No worries - we are all toasty in the house and sewing up a storm. Two of our members had to leave yesterday so with only five in the house - we've got loads of space.

I've learned a LOT while at the retreat. I've learned how the dishwasher actually works! Keep in mind that this is my 7th retreat at this house!  Shelly to the rescue on that one. I've also learned that when working on something with a LOT of pieces that it's a good idea to label EVERY piece. I'm working on Fancy Forest - good god - can it be true that I'm on my LAST set of blocks.  Well, it's not without its challenges.  So this Francis Firefly is - well, if you are making this block, my suggestion?  Label ALL the pieces.

We got home from dinner and I realized that I had screwed up. The girls are loving that!  At first, I thought it was a major screwup that would involve cutting more fabric which I had in one of my bags. BUT, after looking at the situation and undoing TWO small seams, I was able to reposition the pieces - mirror the middle piece and drop it one line - oh god - it was complicated. BUT I persevered and I got all 16 top wing sections done last night.  Needless to say, I was tired and so if there was any cheering going on for the game, it's likely that I missed it!

There are many other things I learned at the retreat but I'll share them when I need to. Went off to the quilt store yesterday to get ONE thing. Well, that one thing turned into several things.

It's always so much fun to see what everyone is working on and I have some great shots of their projects. I'll try to get those edited and posted this week. I have so much to do and it's always sad on the last day of retreat as we wind down what we're sewing - I so want to get those damn butterflies/fireflies - or whatever done this morning if I can! And I can't even say the worst is over because there is another complicated section coming up! Wish me luck!

Back to reality tomorrow and to get caught up.  I have been rooting through my project bag so many times, it's a disaster so that will be the first thing later today to sort that out!

On that note, I'm back to the fireflies.

Have a great day!!!


Ciao!!!

Friday, April 14, 2017

Retreat - Day Two


ACK -- retreats are just way too relaxing!  OK - that's not entirely true. It was my turn to make lunch yesterday and yes, I made my squash soup and veggie wraps from scratch. They were very tasty, but it took a lot of the morning to get the veggies cut and cooked.  No worries - I've got loads of time in the afternoon/evening to sew.

Did I ever say that EVERYTHING takes way longer than you would expect to sew?  Yesh!!!!   I'm working on Fancy Forest while I'm here. I would like to say that I'm working on something else as well, but I seem to spend a LOT of time with Fancy Forest.  I did manage to get one more group of animals completed (except for ONE missing piece of fabric). Now it's not that I'm missing the fabric - it's that I no longer have any of this and I don't have anything similar at home. Well - I could check again or I could stop at the quilt store tomorrow. Yep - I could stop at the quilt store tomorrow!

I've got the next set of animals marked - there is a TON of stitch and flip in this quilt. TONS!!!!   But the last two animals are prepped and ready to sew. Hopefully tonight, I can finish one more and then the last one? Tomorrow?

Shelly and Liz were both working on a baby quilt. One had bought a kit, the other had pulled fabric from their stash. They were both complaining about this baby quilt and when comparing notes, realized that it was the SAME pattern. They agonized a LOT over that pattern, but I'm happy to say that this afternoon BOTH of the quilt tops are done!  What was hilarious is that at lunch when they were complaining talking about the pattern, Ronda pipes up that she has made this quilt THREE times and even had a finished one here that she was sewing the binding on!  I guess it was one of those moments that you had to be there for.

And we had planned on having a bonfire with the leftover fabric scraps and the pattern. Now I'm not so sure what the plans are!

I went out for a walk before dinner last night. More like a forced march, but I managed the 6.5 KM in 61 minutes. The weather here is fabulous!   Not too hot, not too cold, although we've had frost on the cars in the morning. The sun is out and it's glorious!!!   I'm going to hate popping back home to my basement to sew!

So as usual, I'm making good progress, but everything takes so long to get done! However, every little bit helps, but I do have a couple more small projects that I would really really like to get done while I'm here, so I think tomorrow, it's time to shelve Fancy Forest and my Oh Canada bags and get down to real work!

Have a super, super day!!!

Ciao!

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Retreat - Day One

YES - I admit that taking TWO sewing retreats within two weeks of each other is decadent.  Totally decadent and some will view it as irresponsible.  Yep -  probably, but when the opportunity arose - I wasn't going to say no!  The next one isn't for a couple of months and sorry - but it's full with a waiting list.

While there are a few of us who have been on this retreat before, several people are new.  Oh my - they are so well trained - I want to come back with these girls next time!

I had advised people to pre-cut most if not all of the projects they want to work on as there isn't a lot of room for major cutting and if one person takes all the cutting space, it's tight for the rest of the group to work.

There is ZERO stuff on the cutting table.  Well - I've left my small ruler and rotary cutter there as I'm doing a lot of trimming.  I feel guilty!  I took a picture of the cutting table after ONE day and there literally is NOTHING on those cutting mats or the surrounding table - NOTHING.  It's fabulous!  Two people are sewing in the dining room, one person had to cancel and one other person is coming later so we have TONS of room.  I have my own table and I think I've died and gone to heaven. I'm so darn focused that I even forgot that I was supposed to blog this morning!

It's great to get to know a few more retreaters better than we knew them before. Again - a super group to be with.

Am I working??  You bet - I got two more projects advanced as much as I could yesterday.  I didn't bring quite enough fabric for one project in order to get it to the design wall stage and the other project needs to put it on the wall before I can move forward. That will be done at home.

So that was TWO projects done and in the finished bag.  Then I started on Fancy Forest - time to get one more set of blocks done and I managed to get my eight Thistle blocks done last night with NO cutting mishaps. That was super exciting and then because I had so much room on my table, I laid out the three projects that I want to work on today.

I slept upstairs as well which I don't normally do.  I'm all topsy-turvy on this retreat, but having a blast.

It was a tad chilly yesterday afternoon - dull and dreary and damp. Oh dear - I guess I had better figure out how to light the wood stove.  But WAIT - Shelly is here.  Shelly offered to light the fire. I love Shelly and soon we had a toasty fire that burned until we went to bed. This morning, the sun is out and the temperature is rising as we speak - it's going to be an awesome day.

One of the things that I love about this place is sewing in the sunshine. I sew in the basement at home, but here the sun is shining in all those windows in its glory and I'm in love! I love the bright light.

I've got my squash baking in the oven and going to cut up the rest of the veggies for the soup.  Too bad you couldn't be here to enjoy the soup and the retreat. Don't say I didn't offer!

As for the others - they are just as pumped as I am and I've got pictures.  I know I haven't even posted the pictures from the last retreat. It all takes time!

Off to finish making the soup!

Have a super day!!!!

Ciao!!!!!

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Motivational Monday (on a Wednesday)


I think I need help!  Anyone else out there struggling a little bit?

Here is what's happening for me.  I have the Task Master and she is keeping me on track more or less. I try to prioritize the tasks and then break them down into little bits so I can check them off and it looks like I'm getting stuff done.

Now don't get me wrong - I'm getting stuff done, but I'm NOT good at respecting my own deadlines. I'm behind on the February project, although I have to realize that it's a HUGE project (basically an entire heavily pieced quilt from scratch) and I don't just sit down and sew that. It's my "ender and leader" project so it only makes sense that it's taking longer than expected. The important thing is that I have a lot of it prepped for this coming weekend of sewing. I hope to show some progress on it by next week.

Should I have chosen a smaller project than I knew I could get done in the month?  I could have, but I didn't.  What is important here and thanks to this entire process, I haven't shelved this project which is what I've done in the past. I'm still plodding along on it and making decent process. But it's a lesson to be learned for choosing the next projects - perhaps I don't want to pick something that is barely started.

Then I have a couple of smaller projects - well one in particular, that needs to be done. I rushed into it without a lot of thought. The item is made, but now it needs to be remade because the squares are too big. This doesn't normally happen to me, but of course when I'm in a rush for time - this happens!  So what did I need to do?  A bit of planning before I rushed into the project. Thankfully it's small.  I can't even share it with you at this time because it's headed for a magazine. Thankfully, there is time to remake it, but if I had marked that deadline down and NOT been in such a rush, I would have made a prototype to see if the block size worked.

I also have a number of items on that Task Master list that are still waiting to be done. I haven't copied them over to new pages. Nope - but there are some glaring un-highlighted areas on a few pages. Mostly has to do with labels and sleeves.

That means that I need to be a little smarter in writing things down. Perhaps what I need is a master list (like I had in that darn book I lost but is NOW found).  If I write down all the niggling things that need to be done - like sleeves and labels, then when the time comes, I can pick from that list. There are quite a few quilts that are almost finished, but not quite!

I'm breaking with precedent here and I've packed the old book and the Task Master with me for the retreat.  I will NOT lose them. I plan to sit down one morning when it's quiet and go through the books and write these lists (as best as I can remember without the visuals at home) or should I say - review the lists that are in the book.  Then I need to do something very important that I haven't been doing.

I need to sit down once a week - just like I told you all.  Sit down - look at the calendar for the week ahead - how much time do I have, what is the priority and write ONLY those things down.  This delusional doability gets me in trouble every time!

Case in point - I can't sleep last night. Why that happens is beyond me! Thankfully it doesn't happen often, but it was the night before the retreat and I had a stupid dream about rescuing one of my dogs. Yes, the dog fell through the ice and me (who doesn't swim - jumped right in to save her).  The good news is, we both survived (well sort of as Little Sammy is no longer with us in real life, but I saved her in the dream).  I think you can seem why I had that dream! Anyway, I decided to get up and look for something that I have misplaced. It's 5 pieces of blue/green fabric that I had cut to finish my Gravity quilt. Yes - I know Gravity isn't on my Task Master list, but I need it for work. I've been looking for those 5 pieces for a couple of months and NOTHING!  I can't find a single piece of it anywhere. After going through my stuff several times on several occasions, I can only guess that when I was working on this project that those five pieces got mixed up in scraps that had been given away.  It's the only thing I can think of.  I'll get more, but I shouldn't have put it off so long.

HOWEVER, as I was searching through stuff, I found a number of things that I had been looking for (I'm going to start keeping a list!).   I'll share them with you later, but for today, I'm sharing this one.

At the last retreat, I worked on my witch blocks.  Again - NOT on the Task Master. Retreats and the Task Master don't go together for me (perhaps that's part of the reason I''m in trouble!). It's like the calories that don't count because you're standing at the kitchen counter!

The witch blocks


I knew that I had a tub of the fabrics chosen for this quilt on my work tables.  I removed all the stuff that wasn't on the Task Master, but I had forgotten that I had done that. As if I could ignore that huge pile of stuff in the corner. But I did ignore it until last night.

Tub of "finishing" fabric


It just so happens that I have two HUGE chunks of that green  - one in the tub and also in my stash of Halloween fabric. Oh god.   Now I think I'm going to have to throw some of that in my project bag to take with me so I can finish the top as I had planned to do, but was only going to use the one (green) fabric. Now I have choices.

If you're slipping like I am (and I also need to make sure that I'm keeping track of the finishes - which I'm not!) so that when I'm having a moment of self-pity, I can realize that I'm in fact getting things done.  Getting finished is another story!!!

Time to get this show BACK on the road!  I see from the Facebook group, there are some amazing finishes.  WOW -  so many talented and creative people, I'm duly impressed and hope to take some time this weekend to zip through the pictures to truly appreciate what everyone has been working on.

Have a super day - I'm off to pack the car (with my TWO project boxes) and a whole lot of other stuff for 5 days of sewing.

Ciao!!!

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Let's not panic!


I think it's absolutely hilarious that I wrote about how much time I take for myself and then BAM!  I'm in trouble timewise!

I'm sitting at home on Sunday sewing away and having fun despite the fact that I almost lost an eye. More on that in a minute!

I always set an alarm to ring 24 hours in advance of ANY appointment so, in the event that I've forgotten the appointment, there is time to do a mad scramble and get prepped.  So my alarm goes off at 1:30 in the afternoon.  Hmmm - that doesn't sound like a notification - that's an ALARM.  I checked and OH DEAR - there is a guild lecture at 1:30 on Monday afternoon.  It was in the back of my head, but for some reason, I thought it was the following week.

OK - let's breathe deep. There is NO need to panic, despite the fact that I'm already working on two projects that had to be done by Monday morning.  You see, I spent the entire morning leisurely prepping a project for the retreat instead of doing what was urgent FIRST!  The Task Master and I are going to have a little talk at the retreat.  And for those expecting a Motivational Monday post - that will come tomorrow.

Now that the urgent stuff is complete - wait let me tell you how I almost lost my eye. I had to quilt a small project and since it was stitch in the ditch and the project was small, I decided to use my domestic machine and use invisible thread. My sewing machine hates invisible thread, but I had no choice.  I loaded the pre-wound invisible thread bobbin and the spool of thread on the top.  Don't forget to loosen the tension because that is critical.  I'm sewing away and BANG - the darn needle breaks.  My machine HATES invisible thread.   So I grabbed another needle.  I was doing great.  Then I had to start a new line of stitching and the darn needle broke with the first stitch.  Why??  I have no idea. But part of that needle flew up and hit me in the cheek about 1 inch below my eye!!!!   How did that happen????  That freaked me for a bit - that was close to my eye! This time, I put a TOPSTITCH needle in the machine with invisible thread, but I needed to get this project done!  No more broken needles and I didn't lose my eye and it was my good eye too!

Now let's deal with that guild lecture. I still hadn't unpacked from the last lecture a week previous. What's the topic of this lecture??? I normally write it in my book, but there was nothing in the book.  I have three lectures this month and this one just seemed to be a mystery.  I had to get into my e-mail and searched and searched - NOTHING was mentioned about the topic.  Nor where the location of the meeting was!!!   How could this be????   A quick e-mail to the program person and within an hour, I had all the information. Both she and I had forgotten some important details!!!!

I got the trunk show packed and into the car.  The meeting was scheduled to start at 1:30.  I arrive a few minutes before 1:00, only to find the parking lot packed.  NO WAY!  The meeting starts at 1:00???   YES   --- oh god - I rechecked my e-mail and it did say 1:30 PM  so I had not made a mistake.  Thank god, I decided NOT to stop at the chip wagon for a hot dog!!   A quick dash to get the important stuff out of the car. I didn't have time to grab my purse or my phone - I had to get stuff set up because I on the schedule BEFORE the break!   But let's not panic!  OH no!!!!!

Anyway - the presentation went off very well. We had a lot of fun and it's always super exciting to do my "The Life of a Quilter" as I tell my journey as a quilter.  

As the meeting drew to a close, it was getting very dark inside the building. I didn't realize it, but there was a major storm brewing outside!  I drove my car to the door and that huge heavy suitcase that I carry my quilts in???  Well, it got bounced down the stairs and into the car as if that suitcase weighed 5 pounds!   It was POURING rain and I wasn't going to get wet!  Well, I did get wet, but not much!!!!

It was a long drive back and while I wasn't tired on the drive home, I had to have a nap when I got myself sorted out!  It was a long, sort of stressful day, but it all worked out!  Next time - I'm going to make sure that I have all the information in one place before the next lecture. Which I better do today as the next lecture is next Monday!!!

Yikes - what a crazy day!!!!!

Have a super day!!!!

Ciao!!!!

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Take time for yourself


First I have to say a HUGE HUGE THANK YOU to those that showed up for the West End Modern Quilt Guild (unofficial title) meeting yesterday!  I was totally blown away by the response.  Now don't get me wrong - there weren't hundreds there, but given the fact that some couldn't make the time and date, we had an excellent showing for a first meeting. Get this - we already discussed and decided on a cap to the number of people in the group!  I know - first meeting and we're talking capping the numbers!

I'm super excited - it's a good group of people with a huge variety of talents and quilting backgrounds. At this point, I'm not sure if there is any room left!  BUT for those of you who have e-mailed me (and sorry - I haven't responded) and for those that I have already sent an e-mail to - you are on the list if you wish to officially join the group.  I'll be compiling and sending out an e-mail later today to all of you who responded.

The meeting was amazing, so many questions, so much to learn from each other - hence the reason to keep it small so we can ensure that the hands-on experience and answering everyone's questions will be met.  I did take some pictures which I'll share later this week.

Normally at a guild meeting, I have a quick bite to eat before I get to the meeting. This past week, that didn't happen as the traffic was bad and I had promised the speaker I would be there at a specific time. I got the speaker organized and then went to get a sandwich and when I got back, I managed to eat the sandwich while chatting to a lot of people.

Someone mentioned to me that I should ensure that I take time for myself.   Despite the fact that you all think I'm running around like crazy, I would like to say that NO ONE should worry about that. I've very good at taking time for myself. Yesterday, I went to lunch with a few of the meeting attendees and when I got home at 2 PM, I grabbed a chair and a book and the two dogs and we sat in the backyard until 6 PM when it was getting cool, they were getting hungry and I finished the book!  Yes - I should have been quilting, but we had more important things to do!  It is very hard for me to keep my nose out of a book and I have averaged almost one a week for the last 10 years.  Nope - I don't think I'm sacrificing ME time to anyone!

Here's another picture of a project that I did at the retreat. My witches!!!!

Witches

This a pattern from Buggy Barn. You are supposed to use EIGHT blocks in the quilt and what do you do with the last one?  Well - I'm changing it up and putting all nine blocks in the quilt. As I was working on this quilt, I realized that I only had EIGHT pairs of legs, not nine.  Someone reminded me that they remembered this same scenario from a previous retreat and guess what - I never put fabric in for the last pair of legs.  The fabric is NOW in the project box so it will get done this next retreat. But this time at least, I did get the blocks sewn together. They were only half sewn last time.

I swear I also had a basket with more fabric for this quilt hanging around the studio. I looked but didn't find anything.  I did find the one I was looking for in the Halloween fabric stash so I must have filed everything away BEFORE the quilt was done.  GASP!!!!   Anyway - I will trim the blocks before I leave and cut the necessary pieces so the quilt can be assembled. It may not have borders, but it should be together.

So far, I'm respecting the two tote limit and I'm thinking that I might not even get through the first one! We'll see. There are lots of small things that need to be finished or advanced to the next stage.  It might not take as long as I think to wing my way through them. No worries, there is a HUGE project in the second tote that will take days just itself. I won't run out of things to do.

It certainly hasn't been a week for sewing.  Look - I haven't even unpacked my sewing machine yet. It's still in the front hall. That has never happened to me!

No sewing machine set up!
 I've been trying to clear up the mess from all the coming and going these past two weeks.  This is how the studio looked this morning.

The cutting mat was a mess

The staging area (you can never have too many of those!) was also a mess

The ironing board was a write-off

I'm happy to report that the cutting table is now free (at least half of it) and I've been busy prepping things this morning. A couple more to cut and then I'll be packed and ready for the retreat.

The ironing board is in pretty good shape as well. The staging area?  Well - there is stuff there that needs to be prepped for the retreat. I hope by Tuesday evening, it will be clear.

Got a couple of small URGENT projects that need to be done by tomorrow AM. They are cut and ready to sew. Guess I'm going to have to get that sewing machine downstairs. And I've loaded a quilt on the long arm this morning so that needs to get done before I leave as well.

Never a dull moment. I don't think I'll be sitting outside with the girls today - but you never know. I do require a break from time to time and I have a new book sitting here waiting for me to start.

The girls and I have already been to the dog park. They're just a pair of loony tunes, but I see that Lexi was blogging again!

On that note - I'm out of here.

Have a super day!!!

Ciao!!

Saturday, April 8, 2017

The beauty of batiks!


I love batiks. I have lots of batiks. I've done exchanges with batiks, I've made quilts with batiks. But there is one thing that I absolutely adore about batiks and I'll tell you in a few paragraphs.


I was at the guild meeting this past week. We had Sandy Lindal (The Scrappy Gal) as our speaker. Oh my - I've known Sandy for a long time or I should say, I've known of Sandy for a long time. Well, now I have someone to blame for all those darn 9-patch exchanges that I did years ago.  Apparently, she started it at her guild - York Heritage. I remember seeing those beautiful quilts hanging at one of their shows and I fell in love and well - the rest is history - almost. My 9-patches are sitting in boxes (three different ones) waiting for me to get off my butt and do something with them.  I think I've matured enough now that I can get over the fact that some of them are wonky. Find a pattern and sew the darn things together!!!

While at the guild, I chatted with a number of different people and it was when I was chatting to Helen Anne that the light bulb went off. POOF!!!!!!   I just had a fabulous idea.

Now I'm ready to tell you why I love batiks.

So remember my errant block that I posted a couple of days ago? I was going to have to take off the black/cream units on the corners as I didn't have any more of those fabrics.

One of these doesn't belong!


I hate to waste stuff - yes even as silly as these four strips.  Then it hit me - batiks are reversible and if I take the entire block apart and flip the fabrics over so the "wrong" side is showing, I can correct the block, nothing goes to waste.  Did it work???  You be the judge.


Almost fixed - 
 Good thing for taking pictures as I'm just noticing one more mistake!  I have to take the top black/cream unit apart and swap those parts as well. Then it will be fixed. I haven't sewn it together yet.

Isn't that funny that I can fix that darn block!  Thank goodness I used batiks!   Why didn't I think of that at the retreat?  Anyway - I can put this one back in the retreat bag and finish it off next week. And we have the final clue - so I could get some of that done at the retreat as well. Although I do have a fairly free weekend - AFTER our meeting on Modern Quilts this morning.   But I do have a lot of URGENT stuff that has to be prepped for the retreat and that is more important.


Here are a few more pictures of stuff from the retreat.  These are my blocks from Quilter's Patch that I'm teaching at the Hobby Horse.  The top left block was completely pieced, but the others were in bits and pieces as I get them to a certain stage for my class and then complete the blocks later.  I completed three blocks.

Blocks from Quilter's Patch

I was missing ONE piece of fabric so I couldn't quite finish this next block.

Almost done!


That missing piece is now cut and the next two blocks are also cut. I was going to work on them at the retreat and then I realized that one of the people coming is in my class.  Hopefully, she's a late riser and I'll get it done early one morning.

This quilt is going to be gorgeous and I'm going to see Edyta Sitar at Paducah. I'm going to let her know how much we're enjoying her quilt.

But it's all good.  I have a lot more sitting in those bags to unpack and that is my priority this weekend, but I also need to prep the next steps in those projects and get them ready for the retreat so it's going to be a busy afternoon.


On that note - have a super day and don't forget to come visit us this morning if you can.


Ciao!!!!


 April 8  (Saturday) - West End Modern Quilt Guild (unofficial title!)   will be meeting from 10 AM - Noon.  This is the first meeting and we're trying to get a chapter of the Modern Quilt Guild started in the west end of the GTA.  The meeting will take place at Streetsville Kinsmen, 321 Queen Street, Streetsville.   Going to be an open discussion of the guild objectives, show n tell and how traditional quilts are the groundwork of the modern movement. A small fee will be charged to cover the room rental. E-mail me if you can't make it and want to be added to the e-mail list.

Friday, April 7, 2017

Politics (and quilts - I mean ON quilts)

I'm not going to make this a post about politics - well it will be sort of.  But it's related to quilts.

Here's a story that was published in the Chicago Tribune earlier this week.  It's Quilt Festival in Chicago this week so it's only fitting that there would be some news about quilts in the local papers. It's always exciting to see the publicity about our craft/hobby/trade to help raise awareness of what we do!

I don't agree with everything in the article.  Some quilters feel that the statements put forth by these so called political quilts take away from the comfort traditionally associated with a quilt.

For some quilters, the process of making a quilt is a healing process.  Making a quilt from a loved one's shirts, for instance, is a healing process and the resulting quilt becomes a tangible memory of that loved one. Something you can wrap yourself in to get comfort.

For non-quilters, having a quilt made also provides them with a tangible memory of their loved one. I've made a quilt that involved cutting up clothes from a deceased person and hopefully, the quilt has provided some comfort to the recipient. It was a weird process!  

Other quilters are using the quilts as a medium to create ART. Do they see the end result as an object of comfort?  Would they wrap themselves in a quilt that had the image of a gun on it?  It might totally depend on the thoughts and emotions that played in that person's mind when the quilt was made. Imagine a family member was shot to death in cold blood in broad daylight while sitting in his car TWO days before Christmas. That family member was 26 years old!   TWENTY years later, his family finally has closure as someone was found guilty of the murder. Would this family find physical comfort in a quilt with the image of a gun on it?  Probably not, but if that quilt brought awareness of gun violence to others - they may get emotional comfort from that.

Making political statements has been around forever. Probably even on quilts. Modern quilting is making these quilts that much more visible. If political statements on quilts help to raise the awareness of the quilting industry in general?   Go for it!!!  We want this industry to continue and let's remember the percentage of political quilts to regular quilts is pretty small.

Would I make a political statement quilt? I like the idea of having my point of view made known, but sometimes I think my point of view (I'm very opinionated) is very strong, I don't want to be on the receiving end of the backlash.  It takes a lot of courage and guts to make a political statement and put it on display for the world to criticize. But we live in countries where freedom of speech is available to us. Yet at the same time, we need to respect those around us.

Is there an answer?  Nope - but just because a few people are using quilts as a medium to voice their opinion doesn't mean that the world of quilting is going to hell in a hand basket!  It's just that - a medium to voice an opinion!  There are those of us who will continue to make quilts for the sake of making them and to provide comfort to those in need.

This little quilt is hanging in my office at the moment and it's the strongest statement I've ever made on a quilt.  Someone made it for me years ago when I was running a weekly sewing group!  I love it and so should anyone come into my office to complain about something - I'll just point to the quilt!



And the example I gave above? About the 20-year-old murder?  Hard to believe but sadly it's true.  


Have a super day!!!!!


Ciao!


April 8  (Saturday) - West End Modern Quilt Guild (unofficial title!)   will be meeting from 10 AM - Noon.  This is the first meeting and we're trying to get a chapter of the Modern Quilt Guild started in the west end of the GTA.  The meeting will take place at Streetsville Kinsmen, 321 Queen Street, Streetsville.   Going to be an open discussion of the guild objectives, show n tell and how traditional quilts are the groundwork of the modern movement. A small fee will be charged to cover the room rental. E-mail me if you can't make it and want to be added to the e-mail list.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Any which way (it isn't right!)

Good morning!  Got a bit more of an update on what happened at the retreat. I'm still working my way through the bags that I winged on the floor when I came home. 

But you know you're getting older when.....   you just can't stay up past your bedtime (10 PM) and function the next day!  That happened to me at the retreat. 10 PM on the first night and I NEEDED to go to bed. Same thing on the second day - 10 PM and I was out. I did manage to stay up a bit later on the last two nights but not too much and I was getting an extra hour of sleep by getting up at 6 AM, not 5.  So the night I did the trunk show, I was home by 11 PM -- not tired and actually still wide awake so I read for a bit.  I was fine all day yesterday, but last night - I was supposed to go to a meeting. I e-mailed them to say I wasn't going to make it and went to bed - at 6:30 PM.  Woke up at 4 AM and I'm good to go!

This was the next bag of stuff that was sitting on the table to take photos.  This is a project that we're doing at the guild. It's a mystery quilt and we're meeting tonight. Wouldn't it be grand if I could say the entire thing was up to date?  Well - it could have been, EXCEPT.......


Hmm - one of these doesn't belong

And even if I turn the darn thing - it still isn't right!
So yes - ONE block has to be remade. I haven't had time to cut it and of course, I have to remake the white/black combo (which I do NOT think I have any more of - so will have to disassemble the bad block and reuse those components!

First I broke Allie the Owl's wing (that was in yesterday's post) and then I messed up this!  If I would not have made this error - I COULD have been up to date.   That would have been a first for me. But I can remake the block this weekend and hopefully get it all together at the next sewing retreat.   I could possibly have a finished quilt to show at the end of the year?  Oh god - the world is coming to an end!


What did I do since I was up an extra hour this morning?  I got the rest of Fancy Forest cut!  It's in the sewing retreat pile (first project in bag number two!).  I've decided there are only going to be TWO project bags.  Two is plenty!  I also cut out two bags this morning and they will go into the project bag as well. There are a few more small things that will go in the bag and then - that's it!  I`m going to be more responsible!

As promised, here are the pictures from Wasaga Beach from Tuesday evening. The beach looks very inviting but COLD.  It was windy and the temperature wasn't exactly beach weather, but if I had my rubber boots - I would have taken a quick walk!

Wasaga Beach

Wasaga Beach

And while we're on the topic of nature, here's a shot from the retreat house. There is a big pond - where I come from, we would call this a slough.  But there is a pair of ducks that visit from time to time. It`s very hard to see, but this duck had BRILLIANT orange feet. He`s right on the back edge just slight to the left of the middle.

Spring is here - the ducks are back!


I`ll have a few more pictures for tomorrow from the retreat and one of these days, I need to get back to the long arm (weekend project) and the sewing machine. Trying to make a couple of items and write patterns for work projects.  The fun stuff never ends around here.

On that note, I`m out of here!

Have a super day!!!!

Ciao!




April 8  (Saturday) - West End Modern Quilt Guild (unofficial title!)   will be meeting from 10 AM - Noon.  This is the first meeting and we're trying to get a chapter of the Modern Quilt Guild started in the west end of the GTA.  The meeting will take place at Streetsville Kinsmen, 321 Queen Street, Streetsville.   Going to be an open discussion of the guild objectives, show n tell and how traditional quilts are the groundwork of the modern movement. A small fee will be charged to cover the room rental. E-mail me if you can't make it and want to be added to the e-mail list.

If you`ve e-mailed me, I`ll get to e-mail tonight.