Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Trapunto - Back

Leah wanted to see how trapunto works. So I snapped a few pictures last night while playing with my daughter's new digital camera for her big vacation next week to Utah. Aunt Pat gave her the trip for her Confirmation/Graduation/Birthday Gift. And Aunt Pat retires officially today - so she joked with Emily that the trip would give her something to do. They are going to visit 5 of the National Parks out there and do some hiking and general sight seeing of the parks. Emily is my outdoors, active kind of girl - so she is so excited.

Anyway, back to the trapunto. First you stitch around your design that you want to be trapunto'd - normally you only have to do the outline but in this case I did the full design because of the dark fabric and I didn't want the chalk to rub off too soon. Then you need to take it and CAREFULLY cut away the batting around the stitches. Most people use some kind of polyester batting for this part. I don't like the fluffy polyester stuff but I have found I LOVE the Quilter's Dream Polyester. It is denser but will fill in the areas beautifully once the quilting is completed. And it doesn't shift on you when you wash it.

Once it is trimmed you layer your backing, batting and top like normal and quilt. To get a good look to the trapunto you need a lot of quilting around the trapunto area to help pop it out. If nothing else you need to outline the area. I stitched with wash-away thread, so after I quilt it, I will wash the quilt and that white thread you see will disappear! Oh but don't forget to quilt it with regular thread first when you are doing your quilting! I'll quilt right over the wash away thread.

And and don't do like I did once! I accidently left the wash away thread in my bobbin and did some piecing. I'm not really sure what I pieced, but when I found that I still had it in my bobbin a few days later I about died. I"m not sure why I didn't look at my stuff then - but someday I'm going to wash a quilt and the seams are going to wash away! Duhhhh

So here is the back of my top. Where you see the white batting is the trapunto'd parts - or will be when I'm done!

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

A couple questions....

I wanted to answer a couple of questions before I get caught up in catching up at work today!

Shannon wanted to know what the pattern was for the thread case. It is a pattern ByAnnie. Here is the link to the pattern called Thread Dispenser/Sewing Case. She also has some other fun cases and wall thread organizer patterns. I want to make them all! - but that ain't going to happen!

Tracey also wanted to know where I got the Ultra Suede. Well believe it or not I found it at JoAnn Fabrics! Of course I had heard they had it, but doubted it. And then when I went in and asked the lady behind the cutting counter she looked at me blankly. Well I wandered around and on the remant table found a piece of suede like fabric in this UGLY color. So I took that back to her and asked - where would I find fabric like this. Well she vaugley pointed in the direction of the decorator fabrics. Well can you believe it - I found it! It is on the big rolls they have and had about 5 or 6 lovely colors. They also had another kind with a plasticy back, but there was also this other kind that was wonderful. They didn't call it ultra suede - but it was some kind of something suede, and it worked great. It was about $40 per yard, but for 1/4 yard I got plenty to make a bunch of cases for gifts! Of course when I was at Paducah there was this awesome booth in the mall that had 9" x 12" pieces of ultra suede in any color you could imagine - but do you think I can find the sheet of paper I took from them to order it - noooo.

But just in case you can't find some, Annie from the pattern also has a link to where you can purchase online the ultra suede, zippers and more. So here are some more sources.

OK - back to catching up from a 4 day weekend for me!

Sunday, May 28, 2006

No more Graduation Parties until next year!

OK, I"ve survived the weekend I think! I"m exhausted but done! Friday night Emily had a "Last Day of School/We are graduating" party for about 15 of her 8th grade friends. I had 4 of them from 11am till 10pm. The other 11 came for the real party from 4pm until 10pm. I was tired! They had a blast though. They played volleyball, had dancing contests and sat around the fire roasting marshmallows!

Then on Saturday was her Graduation ceremony - at noon. Yup, right in the middle of the day. Then afterwards Holly decided she needed to have all her High School friends over to visit (they are Jr's in college now). So we had more grilling out and laughter in the house.

Then today - Sunday - was the big Emily Confirmation/Emily Graduation/Adam Graduation/Emily Birthday/Memorial Day party. So once again I had a housefull of people and food. But today it got really HOT and humid - about 95 degrees. Wheh. Lots of cold pop was had. But they did play a game of softball anyway.

Tomorrow we have a graduation party for one of Adam's friends - thank goodness I don't have to host that one! Adam doesn't graduation (from High School) until Thurs night. But at this point I"m just happy he is graduating! It wasn't his grades that were the concern - just the "I don't care attitude.

So no more graduation parties until next year for me! Yes there will be another one next year for Jenna from HS.
In the meantime I did finish these really fun applique cdses for 2 friends. I still have to make one for me! But I had to get these 2 made first and as you can see I haven't had much time! The strips underneath the zippers are ultra suede and you thread the thread through it. The ultra suede holds the thread tight enough that it doesn't slip out, but loose enough so you can pull it. So when you want some you just pull on it and cut it to the length you need. It keeps the spools from unraveling and easily lets you see the colors! Isn't it cool?!!! I found the pattern at the Chicago quilt show but didn't have enough money left to buy the pattern. So I had to go in search for it at Paducah and got it there!

OK - I"m going to go crash!

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

A new blogger!

A new friend of mine Linda has just started blogging! Go visit her blog! I was so excited to see that Laura introduced her to blogging. Now I get to see more of her work. But besides quilting she is a wonder with stories, poems and just words in general. Most of you know words and writing are NOT my thing! But Linda is going to really entertain you - just you wait!

I met Linda in person just about a month ago on my big trip to Paducah with Laura. Linda is a master of organizing a huge group of women and making everything run smoothly and so we all have fun! It was the best trip with a group of women I've ever had! And I didn't really know anyone but Laura - who I had only known for years online but not in person!

The pictures I'm showing you today are of my Liberated Log Cabins from the class I took with Gwen Marston this winter! I'm finally taking the time to quilt it! The white lines are chalk lines and disolvable thread. Those areas are going to be trapunto'd. I know you only need to really sew on the outside of the shapes, but the fabric is so dark and I was afraid the chalk lines would rub off - which they are - so I decided a little extra money for stitching the whole design with the wash-away thread, and the extra time would be well worth the investment.

I'm also going to trapunto the shapes in the blocks that are the same green and one of the browns. I'm really excited about this quilt. It is really turning out fun. Not one I normally would have done, but I'm absolutely falling in love with it! And I had a great time in the class learning to be "FREE"! What a great revalation that was for me. Hope you enjoy the pics. I"ll post my progress as I go along!

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Snakes with Wings?

Remember the Snakes with Wings project???!!!!

Well the snakes and wings now have flowers and a flower pot! This block took me a long time to applique - not that I worked on it real hard! Doesn't it look great!

And here is what I have done so far for this quilt - although the star blocks on the bottom were the first blocks that got made and since then I've changed my color scheme a bit so I need to remake them with less gold.

Monday, May 22, 2006

All 4 Blocks so far!

Here is a picture of all 4 blocks together so far! This quilt is really turning out cute! Although I"m thinking I might redo the star snowman's eyes - they are kind of beady looking aren't they? I think it is the big bald head?

Wait till you see all the things I worked on this weekend! I'll be hopefully posting new things each day! Woo Hoo!

Friday, May 19, 2006

Hot Chocolate BOM

Kim wanted to know the name of the snowman BOM. It is a Pearl Louise snowman BOM called "Hot Chocolate". She has had a lot of snowmen BOM's. You can see it here at the bottom of the page for Thimble Cottage's BOM page.

Above is month 4! Completed! Now to get the 4 months together for you to see! And an interesting fact about me - even though I"m "middle aged" and have 4 children I also can still do the splits like Mr Snowman above! (I can't get up as easy anymore - but at least I can still get down!)

Remember the snowmen?

Remember the snowmen BOM my mom got me for xmas? Well I finished one more block, and am working on another - then once again I"ll be all caught up! Just in time for installment 5 to come next week!

Just sweet and short today, but I was so happy I am making progress in the sewing dept that I had to post it!

Thursday, May 18, 2006

My star swap "quilts"

I saw Jeanne's beautiful star quilt she finished - yes I'm jealous - from a Star swap she did last year. I did the same star swap so thought I would share my pictures.

I did finish the one quilt above (I made 2 quilts out of my swap blocks). The other I'm still trying to figure out what kind of border to do. I'm thinking now of slapping on a bunting print I found at Hancock's in Paducah - Exact same colors as the fabrics in the sashing - in fact I think it was from the same line.

Below is the quilt my friend made with her stars she swapped! Just had to share these with you since Jeanne shared hers!

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Why do I do this?

I don't know why I do this to myself! I"m working the last week on the coolest things but can't share them yet on my blog because "others" might see! (Sounds like Lost doesn't it! :))

Actually one is a birthday present for my best quilting buddy Lynn whose birthday is next week, but she is probably reading this right now so I don't want her to see it yet! I probably will get together with her this weekend so then I can share it. I"m booked solid the weekend of her birthday with graduations, 3 graduation parties (2 at my house) and the family memorial day party. Nope - no time that weekend!

And the other is the mystery quilt I wrote for our quilt guild. It is turning out sooo awesome! But I don't want to share that either because someone from the guild may see it - I don't want to spoil the surprise.
So instead I"m just sitting here wishing I could share my fun things with you. Oh well, all in good time I guess. In the meantime the only thing I had to share with you for a picture is my youngest daughter Emily last weekned at her 8th grade banquet (she is the one on the far right in the top picture). We had a wonderful time! And for once she looked so nice not in boys basketball shorts and tshirts! She is thinking of going out for tennis next fall in high school - boy I want to see her in a cute little tennis skirt!

Friday, May 12, 2006

Just a quick post

Just a quick post this morning to show you I actually got 2 sets of 2 star arms sewn together last night! Woo Hoo! At this rate I'll get Lucy and Bonnie's string star quilt done around ...... ok, after I'm dead! But I love the green setting fabric I bought in Paducah for it and I was proud I got 2 sets of 2 arms done!

This is Lucy's (purple) and Bonnie's (green) quilt I'm talking about.

I also had to tack this on. Judy just finished her GORGEOUS Aunt Betty quilt top. I've done 2 quilts with a similar method so wanted to share those with her below!

This one is all made with Australian fabric my friend in Australia gave me one year for xmas (or my birthday - gee, I forget)! This is my special quilt that I use all winter long, I put a really heavy cotton batting in it and it keeps me nice and warm. I made this one probably about 6 years ago.And then this one I did maybe about 3 years ago for a quilt shop class. It was done all in Kansas Troubles fabrics.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

I finished a UFO!

Believe it or not I actually finished (ok finished a top) UFO last night! I got this quilt from a secret sister a few years ago. So I've had the center portion done for about 2 years. Each month she gave me the fabric and the pattern for one block. She didn't want me to guess the pattern so she rewrote all the instructions on paper each month! Then at the end I got the book it came from. So a month ago my LQS decided they wanted me to do this as a "club" quilt next year so it gave me the kick I needed to do the border! Finished it last night! It is off to the quilter's this weekend!
I"m also going to make a string star quilt like Bonnie and Lucy made - question now is can I find their posts with the pictures! I started sewing some strips last night, and the green in the background is going to be my setting fabric. It is the most awesome muddy moss green color!

And now that it is weeks later, I finally got all my Paducah pictures posted on webshots. You can view them here in 2 albums: Album 1 and Album 2.

And in case anyone is interested - the "club" I ran this year at the Quilt Shop had their show and tell last night on their quilt tops. This was the Sunshine on my Shoulders quilt I made last year above and then I redid a variation in 30s fabrics this year below. Go check them out - they turned out wonderful!

Monday, May 08, 2006

Busy, busy weekend - And my Secret Project...

I mentioned my secret project the last few months. Well I can finally show it to you. It was our guilds challenge quilt "The Demise of Sunbonnet Sue", and we had our contest last week - so I can finally share mine with you. I didn't win anything, but the entries were really funny! To see all the entries and winners you can go to our guild's challenge page.

It started out as innocent fun
hamburgers, hot dogs on a bun.
And then she added a spectacular treat,
A gooey messy confection sweet.
Marshmallow, chocolate and graham cracker S'more,
A snack that she always did adore.
But darn those pesky bonnet strings,
they got caught up in the melted thing.
They sucked her up into the mess,
and oozed and melted on her dress.
Sue got pulled in the sandwich nest,
her demise the treat that she loved best!

We also had a very busy weekend. Emily had the conference track meet Saturday, so I spent about 3 hours out in the sun and got burnt - yes I should have known better. At least it isn't really that bad. Just a touch red. But it was so cool and beautiful out!

Then Jenna had prom Saturday night so we had the whole nails, pedicure, hair and dressing up thing, and pictures at several houses. I have to admit, she was gorgeous. And Holly thought up the idea of the mug shot since Jenna was pouting because she was sick of mom taking pictures.

Sunday Emily had confirmation. Oh and of course she never liked any shoes we had found so we had to squeeze that in on Saturday also. She kept whining she wanted to wear flip flops! And I had a terrible time getting her to buy a skirt. This girls lives for long boys basket shorts and T-shirts. She is not my girly girl like Jenna!
The entire weekend was goregous as you can see from the pictures, and I even got some of our flowering bushes and trees in for Bonnie and Lucy.

Boy - I hope I can rest up now this week! Good news is I had a chance to sew a bit yesterday afternoon and made some progress on some UFO's! I'll be sharing those later this week! (I hope - I want to see if I can get them finished!)

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Just plain fun quilts!

I thought I would share some of the more humorous and fun quilts at Paducah today.

First of all - who doesn't love Elvis! My kids still believe he is alive!!! OK, well not anymore, but when they were young and they saw an Elvis impersonator at fairs and such they thought he was the "REAL Elivis"! This quilt was from a pattern in Quilter's Newsletter Magazine called "I Love the Fabric but What Do I Do with It?"! Don't you love the unused tickets on the bottom - They were for some date in 1977 and the price was $7.50! Geez, you can't even buy enough gas to get to a concert these days for that price!

This quilt won 1st place for Handmade Quilts. It was called "These are a few of my Favorite Things". (Can you tell I finally remembered to bring my book in to work with the descriptions and information!). The radial images are all inspired by things the maker enjoys.

I could make out a lot of the "things" but boy some I couldn't figure out. I wish now I would have taken closeup pictures of all of them to look at now! Here are Candy Canes I'm guessing.

And School House, Bell and Apples. Around it I can make out Postage Stamps to the bottom left. And I think Elephants to the top right.

Lilies of the Valley, Thimbles and yo-yo's or tatting or something and cats, ball of yarn and hearts to the far right.

And for you Cat Lovers - A naughty, naughty cat called "I didn't Do It"!

And one of my favorite fun ones - "Sunday in the Park with Mittens". This shows the makers local dog park with dogs she has known through her life - aren't they awesome!!!!

And a fun more folk arty (kinda) looking dog one called "A Dog Called Moda". The maker originally made this for the fairly recent Moda Challenge and was her first totally original design. There was a really cute poem on the quilt also - but I can't recall it anymore.

And "Bring Back the 30's" was made for the makers daughter who collects '30s hats, shoes and purses. She used several patterns but made an original layout.

And last but not least for today is "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner". Each plate is in the style of one of the maker's (this was a joint quilt) favorite quilters.

That's all for today!!!!!

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

I'm weeding through pictures.....

I'm slowly weeding through my pictures, so I have a few more to share with you today. They are in no special order as I'm just sizing them down in the order I took them. I have over 400 pictures, so I need to size them down before I can get them loaded onto webshots!

The first quilt is a Gwen Like Liberated Log cabin! Of course I had to share that with you all! And I loved the dark colors!
I also love coxcomb quilts! I really liked the colors and simplicity of this quilt. Not too much, just right.
But if I had to pick an all time favorite, I LOVE a great feathered star quilt. And isn't this one great! I just loved the colors and design. Once again, just enough, not too little, not too much going on. I loved the flowers!

And isn't this Pink Carnation quilt awesome! I"m not always into the pastels, but the flowers on this one are so unique, and the colors work great together. I also loved the quilting.

And aren't these leaves/plant just wonderful! I love the geometry of the design in this one, and the colors are wonderful. Not sure exactly what draws my eye to this one, but it always grabs my attention. I really loved it.
And last but not least is me captured in the back room at Hancock's of Paducah where they put the remains of the bolts folded up on the sale table. $2.98 a yard! I crammed fabric in for backings! Can't beat that price and it all was recent name brand stuff! See how happy I was!