Friday, August 8, 2014

Exciting news...my original block was accepted!

Quiltmaker 100 Blocks Vol. 9
I just got the news that my original block was accepted for, not this issue #9 (pictured above), but the #10 issue of "Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks" that will go on sale in November.  I am so excited!

I had not heard anything for so long that I figured I didn't get in.  But then I got the congratulatory email this week. 

I wish I could show you the block, but I will give you this tiny teaser hint of the fabrics I used: (I know, I know...a pretty sucky hint...)


OK, maybe I can show a little more:


I can't wait until you see what I did with the hearts!  There will be a blog tour and I will have a detailed tutorial on the blog to go with the published magazine pattern.  Yee haw!  

Happy stitching.
Teresa   :o)

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

More Little Blocks...


I have managed to finish 8 more little hand applique blocks from Lori Smith's pattern, "Miss Emilie's Garden."  They will finish about 6 inches square.


Spending a week along the St. Lawrence River in Ontario, Canada was good for me.  Staying in a rustic cabin, watching the river, and listening to all the birds and wildlife in that beautiful area near the Canadian Thousand Islands are highlights of our year, as Steve's family owns the 11-acre peninsula covered with old growth forest and a handful of rustic, non-insulated structures.  This was my 24th year in a row of going there every summer.


We had some annual upkeep and chores to perform, but rainy, unusually cool weather allowed for cozy fires in the fireplace and a little time to hand stitch and work a couple of fabulous new puzzles purchased just for the trip (my daughter and I are militant puzzlers...).


We spent the week with Steve's brother/wife/dog, so there were just the five of us...very low key.  They drive from Maine and we drive from Michigan.  I love being in Canada, and the Kingston/Gananoqua area is so beautiful and the people so very nice.  Mostly just like a cleaner, nicer United States.  I love passing all the wind turbines that have been installed in the southern Ontario farmland areas and around Kingston.  It takes us 40 minutes to be in Canada from our house, then we enjoy the good roads, beautiful views, and wonderful hospitality of our Canadian neighbors (we bypass Toronto on the 407...).


We have two more brief road trips before Riley starts her senior year on August 18.  Then, maybe I can exhale...it has been one crazy summer.


There are 25 total blocks in this wall hanging, which I think will measure 42" x 42" when finished.  I have 9 more blocks to do...maybe I will finish all the hand work on these next road trips.


I love these reproduction fabrics, but they are definitely a little duller than what I have been working with on "Baltimore Rhapsody" and our anniversary project.


I have picked some brighter repro fabrics for the sashing and borders/swag, so I think things will be more "zingy" overall once everything is assembled.  Someone emailed me about the duller tones, worried that my mood was affecting my color choices, but I actually picked these fabrics and prepped these blocks before my parents' fatal accident.  I am doing OK, by the way...


On a recent college swing through the state, I stopped by "The Door Mouse" in Kansas, OH and picked up some yardage of the above, older repro fabrics.  I may use two reds, but if I only use one I am leaning toward the one on the right with the smaller scale print.  I love this green for the swag!  


I was in and out of "The Door Mouse" in less than 20 minutes, which totally stunned my daughter...that's the shortest stay in a quilt shop for me EVER, so I guess I'm still not quite back to normal, LOL. She had just gotten comfortable in the classroom area of the shop with a novel when I prodded her toward the car...



This is the main swimming/bathing area at Grass Creek, with Riley and Steve "demonstrating."  The water seemed warmer than the air some days that we were there.  Those were days with very quick dips, only for cleanliness sake!


Those are long skinny islands across the water, with the wider branch of the St. Lawrence on the other side.  We only get local tour boats, sailboats, and pleasure boats on our branch...so nice to watch all the pretty and fancy boats!  All the commercial boats and barges are on the branch we can't see.  With the "protection" of a row boat (so boats can see us...), we swim across and back some days for exercise.  It's about a half mile one way...

That is the way to Kingston...


...and that is the way to Gananoqua, the gateway to the Thousand Islands.  The boat house just sits on the rocks by the shore...


Steve is relaxing on the Main House eating porch, drinking a cup of coffee and watching the river...


The dish washing area on the porch is kind of behind him (we boil river water to hand wash the dishes).  The indoor kitchen of the main house is right behind Steve's head.  We have a propane stove and refrigerator and all the pots, utensils, china, etc., so we can cook just about anything.


Freshly washed breakfast fruit, awaiting Red River Cereal...


Walking from The Robin's Egg cabin (where we stayed) over to the Main House in the morning.  There are three sleeping cabins (each with an outhouse), the Main House, the Boat House, and a free standing outhouse (yes, ladies...outhouses...not so bad...).  You can see the river peeking through the trees...


Lots of ferns, moss, weird mushrooms, wild flowers, wild life 
and rotting trees that have fallen over the years...



I've been walking by this rotting part of a tree for years, watching it's transition from huge limb to shapeless mulch on the forest floor...



This is Diaper Point...named that in 1928 when the family bought the property (Steve's Uncle and Dad were babies at that time...).




From the Main House porch, looking at the back side of the Boat House...


The Main House and porch...we now have a solar panel and enough power for limited lights at night and recharging our phones and devices...).


The living room, where a cozy little fire is getting started in the fireplace...



We haul in drinking/cooking water, but bring river water up in old aluminum buckets for everything else...


There are clothespins with the names of everyone who comes to Grass Creek, family and visitors alike.  The clothespins mark people's places at the table(s) and keep folded paper napkins from blowing away...


I had to retire my parents' clothespins this year...they visited 3 or 4 years ago, coming up from Alabama while we were there.  I brought them home...I think I will put them with the Christmas ornaments to clip to the tree.

At the end of our peninsula there is an inlet called Grass Creek that comes in and makes our land almost an island (except where we drive on).  There has recently been a HUGE mansion built across the inlet.  It is called "Mandalay."  It is quite impressive, as compared to our humble structures and outhouses.  The owners made their money from inventing those pine tree air fresheners that you hang in your car.  We have rowed over for a closer look...it would be fun to invite them for dinner some year...    :o)


My husband's cousin is a quilter, but we are never really there at the same time (Hi Peg!).  It would be fun to have a little hand sewing retreat there, although I am tempted to take my Featherweight next year...if there is room in the car!

I love being there, but I do admit that the first warm shower upon returning is AMAZING...

Happy stitching!

Teresa   :o)

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Quilter interrupted...


I am having a hard time getting back into the swing of things since my parents' accident...which is really beginning to irk me.  I decided to hang up my "Contentment" blocks this week so I could think about finalizing the latest two block designs. This is a project I started last fall in celebration of our 20th wedding anniversary.  The blocks are 10 inches square.   

I am going to finish these two blocks I have doodled on paper, then decide if I want to come up with another 3 blocks so that the little quilt would be 3 blocks x 4 blocks.  I'm not back to feeling very creative yet...it is definitely going to need some sort of sashing.

I am working on a block with a DNA double helix as a nod to my science background and a SIMPLE music block to represent our combined interest in music.



I've been stabbing at a few more "Miss Emilie's Garden" blocks...I have not cropped the finished blocks down to size yet.  I think they finish at about 6 inches square.





I am hanging them in place on the design wall as I finish stitching them, soak the glue out, and do any embroidery required.  They seem a little dark to me, but I suppose these repro fabrics will brighten a bit when set with a bright red repro sashing.  I will probably wait until they are all stitched to trim them all down to size.






I just love Lori's patterns...

I've been a wandering road warrior quite a bit lately, and Riley and I head off again this evening for a 2-day college visit trip to Pennsylvania and Ohio. Maybe I will finish a couple more of the Miss Emilie blocks on our wanderings.

I am having a hard time concentrating on anything.  I keep pulling out project boxes containing UFO's in hopes of something, ANYTHING sparking some interest in me.  I have been wasting quite a bit of time on Pinterest lately...shameful, really.  I got an iPhone and it makes Pinterest WAY too easy an escape in moments when I just want to disappear.  Does anyone else out there have a Pinterest addiction??

In stitches,
Teresa   

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Shipshewana Quilt Festival...Part Two



Are you ready for another batch of quilt show quilts??  Here we go...





Oh...now THAT'S blurry...the following quilt is called "Rainbow Nouveau," it was entered in the "Mixed Techniques-Large" group, and it was made by Margaret Solomon Gunn.







And Best of Show (and $3500 prize money) went to "Eureka" by Marilyn Badger.








The following quilt won first place "Mixed Techniques-Small."







The following quilt won "Best Hand Quilting."  It is called "Symphony of Roses" and was entered by Barbara Clem.








The ribbon for "Best Machine Quilting" went to the following quilt, "Fern Rising" by Claudia Pfeil.







The following quilt won first place "Applique-Small."  It is called "Springtime in the Geisha's Garden" by Margaret Solomon Gunn (she also won first place with the next quilt...).







Here is Margaret Solomon Gunn with another first place win in the "Pieced-Small" group, "Kaleidoscopic Calamity."






The following quilt won first place "Applique-Large."  










The following quilt won first place "Pieced-Large."








The following quilt won first place "Mixed Techniques-Large," is called "Red Feathers," and was made by Claudia Clark Myers.







I loved this next quilt...look at all the tiny scraps sewn into "made fabric."








There's just no way to read the following at all, LOL!  It won second place "Applique-Small."  It was made by Pat Kuhns and was called "Timeless Moments" (from a pattern by Lori Smith).

























I think this quilt was made in panels, then sewn together.  The front-of-the-quilt appliques were painted on the quilt backing...really unusual and pretty.  This quilt kept a "white glove lady" really busy, showing the back.

























Yahoo!  Nice hand quilting...

The following quilt won third place "Pieced-Small."






The following quilt won second place "Pieced-Small," it is called "Buggy Wheels," and was made by Barbara Clem.







A musical quilt...you KNOW I liked this one...




























This one was hand quilted...




The following quilt won third place "Pieced-Large."






















The following quilt won third place "Applique-Small," was made by Marilyn Craig, and was called "Audubon's American Robin."








(Oops!  This picture goes with he previous entry...)

















The following quilt won second place "Mixed Technique-Large."







Somehow, I missed the second place "Mixed Techniques-Small" and the third place "Applique-Large."  I was lucky to get almost half of the quilts in the small amount of time I had.  Again, I am sorry the photography is not better...a dark hall and no flash made things really difficult.

I was disappointed in the number of quilts that were hand quilted. The machine quilting was lovely, but it definitely gives the show a lopsided feel in my view...much more artsy and less traditional.  I am finding that I am a quilting dinosaur.

The AQS Grand Rapids Quilt Show is in August, and that is the next place my "Baltimore Rhapsody-Symphony" will make an appearance.

In stitches,
Teresa  :o)