Quilt Archive

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Catching up

Hello Blog Friends!

It's been a busy couple of weeks, I've had a lot going on.

We had a very sad day on Aug. 5...our beloved kitty Betty passed away.  She blessed our lives for 16 years.  Here absence has left a very large void in our lives.  We miss her so much!

I haven't been able to make much headway on sewing projects since my last post...last weekend we were in Seymour, WI to Hamburgerfest.  Yes, it is rumored that Hamburger Charlie invented the hamburger at the County Fair in 1885 .  He was selling his meatballs at the fair, but they weren't going over very well, so he flattened them, put them on bread, and voila, the hamburger was born.  There was a parade, a giant 190 lb hamburger, bands, ketchup slide and a hot air balloon rally.  No doubt about it, small towns in Wisconsin know how to do a fest right, no matter what the reason!
Here's my brother Dave playing in the band at Seymour.  His band is called No Schtick.
The Ketchup Slide
Balloon Rally
It was a great day!
Till next time...

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Row by Row Shop Hopping

Hello Blogger Friends,

Another Quilt Shop Hop is underway...the Row by Row Experience including US and Canada quilt shops.  A number of Wisconsin Shops have joined in this hop, and some are offering unique fabric "license plates" for sale.  Please visit the Row by Row Experience website for more information by clicking here.

Here are a few of the ones I've collected:
I have plans for a quilt and will incorporate these. 

Denis and I were on a road trip recently with good friends Gary and Cathy, to the southern part of Wisconsin...we visited quilt shops in Oconomowoc, Delavan and Janesville.  We many times see unique and what we term as "odd and unusual".  We happened along a antique store (sort of) with lots of rusty and rusting stuff sitting outside.  What really caught our eye was the airplane:

Now, how often does a person see that?

We visited a nice shop just south of Janesville named Life's A Stitch.  The shop was housed in an old farm house and was a very nice shop.  The barn on the property was aptly decorated with barn quilts.  This barn has definitely seen better days...note how the cupola is listing a bit.
Thanks for looking!  Till next time....

Quilt Shop and Hodags

Hello Blogger Friends!
Last weekend Denis,  Mom and I went on a short road trip to Wausau and Rhinelander,  WI in search of (what else?) Quilt shops. 

Our first stop was in Wausau,  where we visited Sew Smart.   A very nice store with an antique  sewing machine collection, with some toy machines as well.  It is a store we will definately visit again.  We lunched in Wausau at a place called Wisconsin Burger Company.  VERY GOOD!!  I had Wisconsin Cheese Curds that were to die for.

After lunch, it was onward to the small town of Rhinelander.  There we found a very nice downtown, 5 to 6 blocks long.  We stopped in Sew Smart, a very nice quilt shop right downtown.  Yes, the two stores we visited that day are sister stores.  This one in Rhinelander was very tastefully decorated in a north woods decor.  They had many lovely fabrics and samples made.  Both Mom and I came home with fabrics...Mom got some lake loon fabrics and came home with some wonderful flannels.  After all that strenuous shopping (LOL) we have ice cream cones at this cute little stand.  I'm definately going back there again for more -- the ice cream is 96% fat free!!  (Does that mean I can eat twice as much?)

While in Rhinelander, we discovered the town's masct, the HODAG.  And, just what is a hodag, you ask?  Well, as far as I have learned, it is a made-up animal, created by a town resident in the 1800's to promote the town.  After the hoax was revealed, the town adopted the hodag as it's mascot.  The local HS team is, you guessed it, the Hodags.  There is Hodag Park, a hodag on the water tower, many businesses with the name hodag, and a fall hodag festval.  We found some hodag statues in downtown, gaily painted in different themes.

It was a great day.  The weather was summer perfect, I was in good company with Mom and Denis, ate wonderful cheese curds and fat-free ice cream, visited quilt shops, and learned all about the hodag.

Till next time...

Wisconsin Fabric Tote Bag

Hello Blog Friends,

Here is the first project using the Wisconsin fabrics from the Statewide Shop Hop. 

We are going on a road trip to Colorado in a few weeks,  and I wanted a bag to keep all my paperwork  in. (relating to itinerary, attractions, hotel reservations,  etc.)  

The pattern is Tahoe Tote  from Pink Sand Beach Designs.   The handles are all leather from Cindy's Button Company.  The sewing instructions were easy to follow and the bag went together easily.  You can see more from Cindy's here .

More later..?

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Pretty Petals All in A Row

Hello Blog Friends!
Baby Girl Quilt is finished!  I've given it a proper name, Pretty Petals All in A Row.
I quilted it in what I call a "whimsical" meander, including curliques.  I used a high loft batting because this is for a baby, then a young child.  I wanted to maintain its "squishability" factor. 
Pretty Petals will move on to its new owner in just a few weeks.  "So long, and I hope you cradle and comfort your new owner well."
I'll be back soon with more news soon...

Wednesday, July 2, 2014


Hello Blog Friends,

While on our travels around the state for the Wisconsin State Shop Hop last month, I visited Barn Door Quilts in Sturgeon Bay.  I've visited this shop many times, and love the selection and the samples they have made up.  I've purchased fabrics from this shop for several quilts and projects I have made.

I have seen samples of row quilts hanging in the shop many times.  Mom has commissioned me to make a baby quilt for a gift she want to give to the daughter of a close friend and neighbor.  I found the following fabrics, and as you can see, they are cut for sewing into the row quilt.  The mother-to-be knows her baby will be a girl.  I wanted to choose a main print that this little girl can grow into, instead of something definitely babyish.  I think these fabrics are perfect...what little girl doesn't just love pink, purple and flowers?

Since I'm under a deadline for this project, I will be completing it in the next couple weeks, in plenty of time for Mom to give as a shower gift!

I'll be back soon with the finished project...

Wisconsin Quilt Shop Hop 2014

Hello blog friends,

I've been doing a little traveling the past couple of weeks...to quilt shops, of course!  The Wisconsin Quilt Shop Hop took place all last month, and I've been working on completing all the visits in my own section.  Although I would love to visit shops in other sections, it is hard when you work full time...somehow my boss might not understand if I took a couple of weeks off to shop.  Come to think of it, my husband might not think too much of that idea either!  LOL

My husband is a very good guy, however, and has acted as my companion and driver on the Saturdays in June.  On June 6, we traveled to Sturgeon Bay and to Green Bay to collect the stamps for those shops.  This past Saturday, June 13, we traveled south to West Bend, Thiensville, took a side trip to Plymouth, then to Sheboygan, then Mishicot, then back home to Appleton.  We traveled to Plover for another stamp in the passport, and finally finished our local section last Saturday, June 28 in Oshkosh.  We don't mind the driving, though, because we love Wisconsin and never tire of looking at the farm fields in the countryside and turn of the century downtown buildings in the cities and towns we visit.  We sometimes see what we term the "odd and unusual" in our travels.  Saturday, we saw a (no kidding) submarine on a trailer.  I didn't have the camera out, so sadly, no picture.

2014 is the third year of the Wisconsin Quilt Shop Hop.  Over 70 shops all over the state are participating this year, and a special collection of fabrics unique to the shop hop are available.  You can get more information at the WIQSH website (click here for the link).  I've purchased all the fabrics needed for the quilt I've designed.  Here are the fabrics I'll be using:

I just love this print of old postcards from around the state.  This fabric called to me and grabbed on to me (you fellow quilters understand what I mean by this.).  I have a guest room that has been in need of something and is perfect for this fabric.  I'll show you that next post and you'll see what I mean.

Here is a collage print of the history of Wisconsin and some symbols of our state.
This postmark print goes hand-in-hand with the postcards.

There are some other prints in the collection as well.  I'll incorporate some of them into the finished quilt.  I'll be back soon with a progress report.

Until then...

Thursday, June 19, 2014

2014 Pillowcases, Group 3

Hello blog friends,

I've been working on the final group of pillowcases for this year's donation, and they are done.  Here are the final six:

These are a couple of school themed pillowcases.  Crayons and numbers on black. 

 I've added this close up showing you the accent flange in a white on white numbers print.  It goes so well with the main fabric.
Here is a favorite of both boys and girls...Berenstein Bears.
 This one will be suitable for an older child.  Puzzle anyone?
Here are a couple of cases appropriate for girls.  I balanced the sports equipment in this one with some pretty pink flowers in the accent fabric.
Who doesn't like whimsical animals in pink, green and blue?  Some little girl is gonna love it!

Well, blog friends, that is the pillowcase class of 2014.  They will be delivered to Children's Hospital on my next trip south to Madison. 

Here in Wisconsin, we are having a state wide shop hop, complete with fabrics designed especially for the hop.  I have my fabrics (all washed and ironed like a good little quilter) and I've designed my quilt.  I'll share the fabrics with you next post.  Until then...

Sunday, June 15, 2014

2014 Pillowcases, Group 2

Hello Blog Friends!

I've been sewing and sewing and have more of the 2014 group of pillowcases to share with you:

Here is a sports-themed pillowcase that is definitely "all boy":

 I've had this pirate fabric since last year, but just couldn't find the right accent fabric.  I finally found something that was perfect...it looks like sand on the beach, don't you think?

 A couple of animal themed pillowcases....bulldogs and octopi:

Here is one definitely for a girl.  It's so bright, maybe I should give a pair of sunglasses with it!
 Next post I'll be sharing the last of the donation pillowcases for this year.  Back to the sewing machine....

See you next time!

Thursday, June 12, 2014

2014 Pillowcases, Group 1

Hello Blog Friends,

The sewing machine has been humming this week.  Here are the first pillowcases for 2014 to roll off the production line.

This first pair is made of fabric from the Pet Park line by Robert Kaufman.  The same cat print is repeated on the white and blue background.  I used the same paw print as the accent fabric for both cases.

I was able to get enough of this robot fabric to make two pillowcases.  I try to use all the fabric that I have, so out of 1/2 yard of both the red and white accent fabrics, I came up with the following.  I love the tone on tone pattern in the white. 

 Here is one definitely for boys:

 And this one is definitely girly-girl:

I'm having fun with these.  Until next time...

Monday, June 9, 2014

Pillowcase Party 2014

Hello blog friends!

Well, I've been busy for the past week or so...sorting, washing, ironing, cutting the fabrics for this year's installment of pillowcases for donation.  Last year's pillowcases were donated to American Family Children's Hospital in Madison, Wisconsin.  This year's group will find a home there also.  This  hospital is important to our family, in particular, two of my grandsons are receiving ongoing or follow up care from the doctors and staff there.  These pillowcases are my way of saying "thank you" and also to help other young patients through what can be a very difficult time. 

I recently received a very nice letter from Children's..."Some of the pillowcases  will be given to patients after surgery.  It is a special treat for our staff to see the expressions of worry and fear on a child's face transform to delight after receiving a special treat like this one."  The best part is that they get to keep their pillowcase and take it home.  This is the very essence and reason that I and many other sewists and quilters like me do this. 

During the course of the year, I attend a number of quilt shows and visit a number of quilt shops.  I'm always on the lookout for cute prints suitable for both boys and girls.  I always shop the sale racks first, and sometimes find some real gems.

As I said before, here is the pile of pillowcases, all cut and ready to sew.  I'll share my progress over the next few weeks and show you the class of 2014 as each one graduates to the "finished" pile.  This is going to be fun!

Come back often to check my progress.

See you in a few....

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

In Bloom

Hello Blog Friends,

It is good to be back.  And, yes it has been some time since I've posted to this blog site.  It's been a busy 6 weeks!  Here's what I've been up to:

Easter.  After attending church services, we traveled to Plover to spend the day with my Mom (she cooked a delicious ham dinner!), my brother Dave and his wife Lynda.  A nice day.
24-27.  Scrapbooking retreat in northern Wisconsin.  A great time scrapping and spending time with 30 of my old and new friends.

5  Attended the Quilt Show in Jackson, WI.
13  Attended the First Communion of my oldest Granddaughter Hailey in West Bend, WI.  Here is Hailey and Great-Grandma (aka Mom) at the church:
19  Spent the day back in Jackson, WI  at the Village wide Rummage Sale
24-26  Memorial Day weekend.  Green County in southern Wisconsin with Mom along for the ride.  We saw over 100 barn quilts and spent time in some lovely small towns along the way.


Green County was settled primarily by Swiss and German immigrants in the late 1800's.  You will notice something unusual about the barns shown above:  they are all painted white.  When you typically think of a Wisconsin barn, you think of red.  But, 90% or more of the barns we saw this past weekend were painted white.  I'm wondering if that is a Swiss influence?

And, of course, the concrete business I work for (being a seasonal business) is now running at about 110%, now that spring/summer has decided it is here. 

I haven't been sitting around idle in the evenings, however.  I've been working on a little book of quotes (a scrapping project) that will be a Christmas gift for a certain someone who needs to remain anonymous for now (for obvious reasons...they read the blog). 

When we rounded the curve to our house on our return Monday afternoon, we were met with a beautiful surprise.  This is a flowering tree in our front yard.  It is in full bloom.  The blossoms will produce small red berries that feed the birds all winter long.  Gorgeous!

I'll try not to be so long in posting again!

Till next time....

Friday, April 11, 2014

A Special Evening with Nancy Zieman

Hello Blog Friends,

I have been hard at work finishing the quilts I started earlier in the year.  Hopefully by the end of this weekend, the UFO pile will be much smaller. 

I wanted to tell you about a very nice evening I spent last night.  I had the opportunity to attend a presentation and book signing by Nancy Zieman.  I'm hoping some of you have know of Nancy from her PBS program Sewing with Nancy.  If not, you can get more information at:  http://wpt.org/SewingWithNancy.org  or on Nancy's blog at http://www.nancyzieman.com/blog/

Nancy has written a book about her life.  It's not just a chronicle of her accomplishments, but is also a story of how she overcame adversity and physical challenges to get to where she is today.  Nancy grew up in a rural area not far from Winneconne (just SW of Appleton, WI).  The presentation was attended by fans like me and by high school and neighborhood friends from the Winneconne area.

I had a wonderful time and Nancy inscribed my copy of her book.

More next time on those UFOs...

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Daisy Chain Table Topper

Hello Blog Friends!

Well, I've been back at the sewing machine and have completed one of the UFOs hanging in wait on my craft room door.  I didn't share this one with you before this, since it was a gift for Mom's birthday this past week.  Since she reads the blog faithfully (like a good mother should!), I didn't want to spoil the surprise.

I bought this cute little topper as a kit, from eBay of all places.  The coordinating fabrics are all from the "He Loves Me" line from Maywood.  I had enough for the topper, but could not find any coordinating fabric anywhere on the 'net for the back, since it is several years out of print.  So, off to my local quilt shop, and found a perfect olive green (for the back and binding) from the Moda Marbles series.

The topper sewed up quickly.  Notice the mitered corners in the border. I ran a line of decorative flower stitches along the daisy line in the outer border, stitch in ditch on both sides of the inner border, and did a small free motion meander in the center.

I had a large enough piece of the border fabric left over, so I incorporated it in the back.  I also stitched the label in this border.

I think it turned out well.  Mom was pleased with it.  It now graces her dining room table.

I've begun the finishing work on Heather's Jewel Box.  So far the backing is made, and I'm ready for pinning and quilting.  I have a tight timetable on this one...it needs to be finished by April 6 so I can give it over to her mother, who will deliver it to her later in the month.

I'll check back with you in about a week once it is finished.  Meanwhile, happy sewing and thanks for visiting!

Saturday, March 15, 2014

National Quilting Day 2014.

Hello Blogger Friends!

What better way to celebrate National Quilting Day than with a Quilt Show?  I celebrated today by attending the Sewing and Quilting Expo in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.  The Expo included a judged Quilt Show, a local Vendor Mall, and a wide variety of workshops presented by some very talented local quilters.  Here are some of the quilts that caught my eye:

I loved this one.  It features lighthouses in Door County, Wis.  One of my favorite subjects and places!
This one features airplanes in the centers of the squares.
An M.C. Escher-esque piece.
A little whimsy to end the day.
I attended three lectures given by Chris Kirsch which included techniques for adding curves and arcs to quilts, fiber art possibilities, and binding treatments and techniques.  All three lectures were accompanied by a trunk show of her incredible work.  Here is a picture of Chris and one of her amazing art quilts.

I learned about foundation paper piecing from Ann Wanke with some very valuable insider tips and how-tos.  She also shared some samples of her small scale beautiful work.  I enjoyed this class, as I really haven't done any paper piecing.  I have actually shied away from patterns requiring paper piecing, thinking it was too difficult and daunting a task.  Ann's demo made it look easy and I think I might try it!  My final lecture of the day was with Wendy Rieves, who shared some ideas about making quilt labels.  She also shared some of her award winning work.

I came away from the day with ideas and inspiration.  Hopefully you will be seeing the fruits of that inspiration in the near future.  For now, however, it is nose to the grindstone to finish the UFOs I told you about in earlier posts.

FYI:  The sewing machine is finally back home in its cabinet after a lengthy stay at the repair shop.  She's glad to be home again and is anxious to get working again.  So am I.  I'll update you with progress on my next post.

Until then...