Monday, December 24, 2012

Quilt Catch-up

This year has gone by so quickly, filled with drama, deadlines, decisions and discombobulations. (Is that a word? ::Pause to check:: Yes, it is. And it's spelled correctly.) Did I mention, that in 8 years of elementary school, I only got 1 word wrong on a spelling test? In 8 years. No medal; no certificate....cheapskates.) Where was I? Oh yeah.
With Andy's numerous and recurring health issues, the demands of expanding the retreat, quilt deadlines missed and missed again, trying to get the last 2 kids through their senior year, meeting college deadlines, running the household... there hasn't been near enough time to devote to my personal quilts. So, as far as the 2012 Finish Line goes, it's pretty slim pickins. But I do have a couple of quilts to show for it, and even though they're small, they still count! First up:
Cameron's Baby Quilt, made for my little great-nephew in Southern California. It's small, and is sized for his car seat or stroller. It gets chilly there at night, and I thought it might come in handy.

This one, similar to Cameron's, is made for my "great-nephew" Hudson, the son of my "wish-she-was-really-my-niece," Casey, in Prosper, TX. All the nine patches are identical to the first quilt, but the snowballs and borders are different.

Both quilts were made with leftover floral fabrics from the ones I used to make duvet covers for the retreats. Those 9-patches are 3" square, and I made them as leaders/enders while sewing other projects.
And Hudson has a big sister, Audrey, who also needed a quilt, so I made her one for herself and/or her baby dolls. It started as a pretty little panel, and all I had to do was add a few borders and quilt it up.

Next up is a tote I made in my Scrap Therapy class.
It fits 4 Scrap Therapy bins inside which, theoretically, are all my scraps, cut into 5," 3.5," and 2" squares, ready to go into any number of ST projects. Yeah. In theory.
Also, from Scrap Therapy is this little wallhanging. I took a Jacobean hand applique class many years ago from Pat Campbell. Since I knew I would suck at it, I did it on crummy, unbleached muslin. *Note to self: on the off-chance that it might actually turn out ok, don't use crappy fabrics for your workshops.* I didn't know what to do with this little flower, til one of the Scrap Therapy sessions called for applique. Well, screw that! It'd never get finished, and that'd leave me with yet another unfinished project. I already have 50+ in various stages of completion - or not. So anyway, I pulled out this little project and used it for the center of the wallhanging. Done. Whew! That was a close one.
Pat called it Jacobean Silky Sapling, but I think I'll call it Flame Tree since I quilted it with a variegated yellow/orange King Tut in kind of a flame pattern. 

Let's see...what's next? Oh! How about the little wallhanging I finished last month while I was on retreat at SkyVue Lodge in Winslow, Arkansas. It's from a workshop I took with Debbie Bacon, when she came to our guild. The project, called "Celebration," was supposed to be in RWB, but since I still have tons of retreat duvet fabric left over, I decided to make mine from those, instead. I changed her pattern a little bit to make it the size I needed to hang in the Blue Room at the Cabin Too. I really like the way it turned out!

(And it'd make an awesome emergency baby quilt!)
Being as we're only 7 days from the end of the year, I'm pretty sure I won't be adding any more to 2012's Finish Line. That being said, I'm looking forward to 2013 being a) calmer, and b) more productive!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

December Desktop Calendar

The final desktop calendar of 2012 - where did the year go?? It's been fun doing all log cabin quilts this year, and no, I don't have a clue as to what the 2013 theme will be. Maybe no theme at all. We'll see what I can come up with at 11:45 on New Year's Eve.
To download it, click on the calendar to expand the image to full size, then right-click and choose Set as Wallpaper or Background. To really jazz up your desktop, right-click on your background and choose a color that coordinates with the calendar - or do like I do, and set your background color to black. It goes with everything and really makes the colors pop! And when your friends say, "Where did you get that?" Send them to see me!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

International Quilt Market/Festival Shoe Report

Ok, I'm only about a month late with sue me. Life's still hectic on our dirt road, what with Andy's health issues, running two retreat facilities, quilting for my ever-so-patient customers, and now...babysitting for two of my grandchildren (Jack & Sofie, ages 4 & 2) now that my daughter's in the throes of morning sickness with #3!
Aren't they the cutest little minions?!

On to Market/Festival!

Pre-Market activities begin with an all-day marathon called Schoolhouse. This year I attended 15-30 minute sessions from 10am-6pm with fellow Sew-Hos Peggy, Kathi, and Mandy, and good friend, Nancy. Went to some great presentations by Andover, Krause, Marti Michel, Avlyn, Pin Peddlers, RJR, Sizzix, Electric Quilt, Kaufman, Cabin in the Woods (just had to see what they were all about - great patterns and books), AccuQuilt, and so many more.

Sometimes, you'll get handouts or freebies, or even win a doorprize. Here's some of the loot I  was lucky enough to pick up from some of the Schoolhouse presenters: fusible batting, Steam-a-Seam, totes, charm packs, fat quarters, patterns...

After an exhausting day of running from class to class, and lugging a bag (getting heavier and heavier with freebies :sob:), we quickly ran to the car to stow all our loot, then headed to the Hilton lobby restaurant for a quick dinner before the quilter's version of the running of the bulls called Sample Spree. Didn't drop as much dough as I have in year's past, but that was only because I limited myself to cash only - no credit cards, no checks. I kept to my budget, and I got everything I wanted (almost), but it wasn't nearly as much fun as last year, when I went kinda nuts. Picked up some good deals from the Woolly Lady, Robert Kaufman, Electric Quilt, Bareroots patterns, etc.

With Schoolhouse and Sample Spree behind us, we limped out to the car like a bunch of 3-legged dogs, and headed back to the Cabin Too for a final glass of wine and a good night's sleep. Then up at the crack and back downtown for the opening of Market and more shopping - and don't forget the freebies! Here's some of my haul - 

And now, for the annual (mainly) Footwear Fashion Show!

These boots (and the wearer) came all the way from Paris. Not Paris, Texas - Paris, France!

Guess what this girl's mom does for a living?

She's a professional longarm quilter - and she made these for her daughter! Awesome!

Ebony Love! Author of The Big Little Book of Fabric Die Cutting Tips - a must have for anyone interested in buying one, or getting the most out of their die cutting machine. And check out Ebony's custom-made dress - how cute is that?!
And speaking of dresses...
Thomas Knauer, designer for Andover, is wearing the skirt he made of his own fabric, and modeling the bag his mom made for him.

This is Richard, of Akonye Kena - another man secure enough in his own masculinity, that he's not above wearing a skirt in public.

And speaking of not wearing enough in public
Please God - don't let them bring leggings back...especially not lacey, stretched-beyond-the laws-of-physics, see-through ones. Please. No.

I need a palate 'bout this quilt hanging in the Marcus Brothers booth?
And how about this? Peggy, of Connect the Blocks is trying to decide which Anthology fabrics to stock. I voted for all of them, but Peggy still wanted to be able to afford her trip home. Pansy.
Incidentally, Peggy's going to be offering this shoe quilt as a Block of the Month soon. 
So, so cute!

Cute...cute...that reminds me...

Timeless Treasures had a bunch of hunky beach boys handing out Halloween candy. Oh. Yeah. And the girl had shoes. Or something.

And since it was Halloween, lots of vendors and shoppers were in costume - or maybe that's the way they always dress!

 This leather coat with applique and quilting took two whole cowhides to make. I asked.

Kathi Eubank, editor of On Track magazine, and Cara Gulati , talented quilt designer and author

And the last two pairs of shoes were seen in the Hilton lobby bar
I'm pretty sure they weren't quilters. I'm thinking they were working girls.

One more thing before I put Market/Festival to bed. Some of the booths were really imaginative:

And one of my favorite vendors with her products. I have at least 100 of them in my studio!

Wait. Don't go. I forgot. I found two quilts that I'd quilted for customers - one in a booth, and one in the show.
This one's featured in the Moda Bake Shop's new book, "Sweet Celebrations."

And this quilt was designed and pieced by quilt designer and author, RaNae Merrill

That's about it for the 2012 Sensible vs Sexy Shoe Battle. Hope you enjoyed it!