January 2016

This quilt top still needs to be quilted, but I wanted to show it anyway. I really love it. I got most of the little nine-patch blocks from a swap with a couple gals many years ago and they have been sitting in a box since then. I decided that it was finally time to play with them and planned this layout. I also got to use up some hexie flowers that I made when my hexie craze was at full tilt. I think they make a perfect accent.

When finished, this quilt will go in our guest room. I am planning on having two single beds in there. So far, I have just the one bed frame (I put an air mattress on the frame for the picture), but eventually there will be another bed. Best of all, I have enough little nine-patches left to make a quilt for the second bed. I have a different arrangement in mind for it, but it will also include hexie flowers.

Here is a journal cover that I made for a friend who loves Wonder Woman. The gold page marker is suppose to represent Wonder Woman’s golden lasso.

The next picture is of my first Quilt of Valor for the year. I made from a mystery quilt, although I waited and got all the clues and new what it would look like before starting on it.  Making the stars was a little tricky — everything else was easy.

2016-01-20 qov


Another November Post

I can’t say that I have gotten a lot of quilting done since the last post, but there are a couple of things that I couldn’t show till now that I what to share.

This Xmas tree is a panel by Stonehenge. I quilted it for my sister and made buttonholes for little electric lights to go through. It looks really nice in person, but the lights don’t show up well on camera.

Xmas Tree

Xmas Tree

This is the first time I tried quilting a big spiral and I think it looks really nicely. I got the idea from this blog post:


I like this spiral technique so much that I know I will use it a lot in the future.  In fact, I used it on another quilt right away. This is my entry for the Sunstitchers’ 2015 challenge which was to make any kind of quilt with five-inch squares.  I ran across the pattern, called Twinkle Star,  for this carpenter’s star that was made from a charm pack in a magazine and decided it would be just right, particularly since I had a charm pack handy. This is my finished quilt:

Challenge Quilt

Challenge Quilt

It is about 39 inches square and looks a lot more complicated than it actually was to piece and quilt which is my favorite kind of quilt to make.  I had a few squares leftover and used them in the saw-tooth border. I really like the way the circular quilting contrasts with all the sharp points.

Yesterday was the Sunstitchers meeting when the entries were to be revealed, and there were quite a few beautiful and clever quilts to see. I was pleasantly surprised that mine won a prize and will enjoy spending my Joann’s gift certificate.

Here is another idea I had to use five in squares – a biscuit quilt. Sometimes these are called puff quilts too. It is an old technique but I had never tried it, so I got out another pack of 5 inch squares and gave it a try. I am sure you could search up either name and get instructions.

 puff quilts

Biscuit quiltlets

These are as finished as they will get — they fit perfectly in the baskets I have sitting around for the cats to nap in.  I don’t know if I would ever make a larger quilt with this technique, but it would definitely be a cozy one.

Well that is all for now. I hope you have a safe and happy Thanksgiving holiday.

Happy Day


Checking In

Well, we have been in Florida now for about six months and in our house for about five, and I am beginning to feel like this is home. I suspect finally getting a washer and dryer helped with that feeling.  It is so nice to do my own laundry again and not have to take it out to the laundromat.

2015-06-03 washer & dryer

here are the new lovelies, happily nestled in their own little niche. And look at what we (‘we’ in this case means Raymond) had to do to vent the dryer! I don’t know how the previous owners did laundry as there was no vent for a dryer anywhere in the garage.  This setup is a little funky looking, but as long as it works I love it.

2015-06-03 washer & dryer2

I happened across a Quilting Arts episode (1210) on Create TV this week and saw two projects that seemed interesting — quick fabric flowers and a scrappy trip around the world block. That same day, I tried making the flower before I forgot how and here is my attempt.  I like it. I can see this being a cute addition to a purse or pillow or even a baby quilt. The one in the clip used ombre fabric and the first one I found was this brown to tan. It still looks like a flower.  It was as easy to make as it looked in the video.

2015-06-12 sample quilting arts flower

And here is the scrappy trip block. The original pattern is on Bonnie Hunter’s website,  quiltville.com.  I had seen it there but thought making all those little squares looked like a lot of work. Well after seeing the video on Quilting Arts, I found out it is a fun and quick little block to make. I am so tempted to cut up all my fat quarters into strips and start making more of these blocks.

2015-06-13 scrappy trip

Because the blocks are so busy, I think if I used the same color in the center (I decided to go with white) the blocks would have a little bit of order.

Sock it to me

Next, I am pleased to show a finished sock. I have been knitting on this one for over a year!  The yarn is wool, silk and a little nylon. It feels very soft. I started the second one right away but who knows how long it will take to finish!  Don’t you love the color!

2015-06-12 table sock #20

Studio Update

This week, we got a piece of pegboard and some 1″ x 2″s for the legs and frame and Raymond put them together to hold my rulers and rotary cutters. This one is bigger than the last one and I love it.  Here are some shots of the studio showing the new pegboard.

2015-06-12 studio 2

I moved the furniture around again as you can see. 

2015-06-12 studio 3The pegboard as well as the design wall just lean there against the wall. I love that I can move them around without leaving marks on the walls.  The only exception with that will be my next design wall which will be made of insulation sheets covered in flannel. They will be secured to the wall. Maybe next month I will get around to that.
2015-06-12 studio 1

And here is the pegboard with all my rulers arranged on it right by the cutting table.  I love it!  Now I better get in there and sew something.
2015-06-13 pegboard

Catching up with June

It has been a busy few weeks, and the coming weeks promise to be even busier, so I am glad to have a little time this morning to update Towanda.

First, is the nearly finished Quilt of Valor that I have been working on for quite a while. Gosh, it took a long time to get all those strips sewn together, and I love the way the star blocks bring some order to the chaos.

2014-05-28 QOV


Next is the ginormous tote bag I made for my sister. She loves paisley and this was the biggest paisley print that I could get my hands on.



This is a ladybug zippy bag that I made for Tracey, a gal who worked in the quilt shop my sister goes to in Virginia. I learned how to use my Viking sewing machine fonts to quilt her name onto the bag. That was fun.



This is another sewing vest that I made for Ms. Audre who owns the fabric shop. The fabric on the pockets looks like bolts of fabric stacked up. Cute.



Sandi, Sharon, Karen and I decided to start a row robin. Here is my contribution to Sandi’s block. I did the two side borders adapted from an Improv Herringbone block that I found online. Here is the link to the tutorial:




The May ATC cards were all about Aces and Jokers. This was a challenging one for me.



Here is the finished hexie spiral quilt that I have been showing you bits of. All done now.



The last set of lotto blocks that I won were these plus sign blocks. I added some wonky log cabin borders around them and finally got them arranged into a quilt top. Pretty interesting, I think. I am curious to see what the quilting will do.


From the leftover bits from the plus sign quilt, I made this little block. Not sure what will become of it, but I am thinking it might just make an interesting boxy tote bag (like the one you will see when you scroll down a bit).


Here is my first boxy tote bag. It was fun and easy to make after I audited the Modern guild sew-in where Vanessa showed how.  As you might suspect, this went to my sister too — the paisley is the clue. This bag is a nice size for carrying around a sewing project or to use as a travel bag to hold all those little things you need in one place. I suspect there will be a lot of them in my future.


That concludes the quilting portion of June. Please tune in again for the continuing adventures of this crazy quilter.  In the last week of June, I went to visit my sister and ended up staying for almost two weeks. We had a great time, but that is another post.  Happy Day!

In The Merry Month Of May

Seems like each month finds me busier than the last with little to show as far as finishes. Well, here is what I have been up to:

Sewing Vest

I made this sewing vest for my Chattanooga Quilter’s guild exchange gift. It is based on a pattern called the “Mae West Bomber Vest” and has a bunch of pockets on the inside and outside to hold all your tools and even a pocket for scraps. I altered the pin cushion from a plain square pillow of fabric to the little hexie flower, but the rest is just like the pattern.



I was so happy that I had this button in my stash — it looks like a rolled up measuring tape and goes with the sewing fabric perfectly.


My friend Vicky got the vest and I think she liked it.

Paper Pieced Place Mats

I have been enjoying taking a paper piecing class taught by my friend Denise. We met once a week for eight weeks ending last Thursday.

Here are my second set of place mats — winter of course.  I had trouble with the nine patches in the one and decided to skip them in the other.  The trees were a little tricky, but I got them done. The snowflakes are fused applique on a paper pieced snowball block. These place mats are not quilted yet.


are not quite assembled, but the paper piecing is done. I decided that rather than make two of each of these that I could make one of each and they would serve as our spring and summer set. That little flower block seemed to take forever, so one is enough.

Birds and bees — a fine combination.  I will probably take one of the bees and one of the cardinals and make them into coasters.




Spiced Pumpkin

I started a new hand applique project – a kit by Jan Patek called “Spiced Pumpkin.” The picture shows the center block. When completed it will be about 40″ square.  Civil War reproduction fabric is a different style than I usually use, but I think  this wall hanging will be a great addition to the autumn decor. I have the leaves and one of the vines stitched down already.


Sweet Hearts

I made these heart pot holders for my friend, Vicky’s, birthday gift and managed to get them to her only about a week late.


More Hexies

Here is a new hexie experiment in progress. I had a bundle of fat quarters of the same print in different colors and thought they might work for this with a solid grey thrown in for balance. Not sure what I think about it yet.



Quilt of Valor

I sewed a bunch of strips together in this red white and blue lasagna quilt. It needs nice solid borders, probably navy blue which I hope will calm down all the action of the fabrics and make a quilt that will comfort a veteran.



Well, that pretty much catches me up for now. I hope your spring is full of love and creativity.


Catching up, again!

Well, my excuse this time is that I tried a couple times to upload pictures to make an ‘end of December’ post and had technical difficulties. Turns out WordPress changed things around a little and made it ‘easier’ to upload pictures. Ha!

Here is a cuddle quilt I made for Roald McDonald house from a kit prepared by Chattanooga Quilt guild. I love that striped backing fabric – I got that when I visited my sister last year. ??????????

Here is a heart shaped mug rug that I made from some crumb pieced fabric just to see how it would turn out. Maybe a little embroidery would look good.  I love the shape and you can bet you will see more hearts here soon.


That finishes up my December 2013 pictures.

A Few More Pictures

Well, almost another month has passed. Doesn’t time fly?

Here are some pictures of what I have been working on:

First, I finished my Chubby Charmer bag. It is from a pattern by Penny Sturges who also designed the Bow Tucks purse that everyone is making lately.  We had a workshop on making this bag a couple of months ago at Chattanooga Quilt Guild. I like the bag because it is so big you can put a big quilt or two in it. It is designed to be made with charm blocks, but I decided to cut up some of my crumb blocks and alternate them with black fabric.  The lining is a peach and orange fabric from my stash. This bag was very easy to put together, although when I make another one, I will use a lighter weight batting in the handles because it was so thick that I broke a couple of needles sewing through all the thicknesses.  Except for that, I love it.

2013-04-05 one chubby charmers

Second is the Pizza Box block I made this month from Dawn’s fabrics. She had asked for a little applique, so I chose this block from “Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks.”  The clue for this month was half-sqare triangle, so there had to be at least one clearly visible half-square triangle.

2013-04-09 dawns pizza box block

As mentioned previously, I am making a practice block out of fabric from my Pizza Box, and here is the one for March.

2013-04-12 my april pizza box block

Third, my sister made a quilt for the grandbaby of a co-worker and I offered to quilt it for her. I have had it for months, but finally got it done. She did a great job on the quilt. It is made with Minkee and chenille and flannel — I have never worked with such a combination, but may have to now that I see how pretty it comes out.  I quilted it with the walking foot and just did some wavy lines going from top to bottom to avoid pleats and puckers in the seams from the wiggly fabrics. It looks pretty good and will be sturdy enough.

2013-04-12 lauras baby quilt

Fourth is the block of the month for The Modern Guild. If you make and turn in a block, you get put in a drawing to win all the blocks made for that month. I really liked the look of this Celtic chain block and made one hoping to win a bunch of them. Although I didn’t win, I found that the block was really easy to assemble and have added it to my list of quilts to make one of these days.

2013-04-12 modern guild keltic maze block

Next month’s block is called granny square and I kind of like that one too.

Fifth and final for this entry are a couple pillowcases I made.  I was lucky to be invited to a quilting retreat that took place last week and wanted some cute cases for my travel pillows (more about the retreat will follow in the next post, but you can search up grandoakretreat.com to see the beautiful place we stayed). I used a crazy patched cheater fabric and a couple of coordinating fabrics.  That little pillow is filled with buckwheat hulls and I usually sleep with that covering whichever ear is up. It blocks out most of the noises and I can sleep better.

2013-04-14 travel pillows