Saturday, April 19, 2014

Time for Sashing!

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I’ve finished all 25 of the pinwheel star blocks for the baby quilt for my niece-to-be.  I’m in a bit of a hurry – She is arriving in July, and my Sis tends to go into labor a bit early with her babies.

Knowing what I time I have to sew at home, wedged in between my crazy schedule and other deadlines, I really want to get this top together this weekend while we are up at the cabin.

At this point I only had one more block to go ---See that cute kitty fabric in the corner of this block?  SEW SWEET!  I love it when little surprises like that happen.  The square was not “fussy cut” – it just happened to be there.

I was going to use this for sashing:

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Baby pink? Purple cornerstones?

But it turned out to be lighter than I really wanted – and I need 60 sashings. There just wasn’t going to be quite enough yardage to give me the number I needed, so this piece will be saved for something maybe binding.

How do I know how many sashings and cornerstones I need for a quilt set 5 blocks X 5 blocks?  Click HERE for my Straight-Set Sashing Chart!

It’s a good thing I grabbed a few different pieces of yardage just in case what I was thinking didn’t work out.

I’ve decided on this instead:

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Periwinkle dots for sashing with pink cornerstones!

This makes me a lot happier!

Our guests are arriving for dinner at 4pm.  The Hubster just put brownies into the oven for dessert.  The cabin will soon be filled with the aroma of chocolate baking.  Dessert is to be warm brownies and ice cream with chocolate sauce.

Being that I’m still gluten-free after 13 months now, I’ll just opt for the ice cream with the chocolate sauce, knowing that everyone else will enjoy their brownies.

Back to the job of sashing this sweet quilt – I’m getting excited for my niece to get here!

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The Butler-Turpin House, Carrolton, KY

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It’s a rainy morning on Buck Mountain, and I am still going through photos I had taken during my stay at the Sew Expo at General Butler State Park in Carrollton, KY.

Remember the historic house that I wanted to tour, but couldn’t because they weren’t open while I was there?

I did get to go walk around the grounds on Monday evening – the ONE evening when it was over 80 degrees, and I actually waited for it to “COOL DOWN” before taking my evening walk!  The next morning? SNOW.  Bizarre.  But I digress.

It was a beautiful evening and I went and explored as much as I could from the outside.

Winding my way down the hill from the state park lodge to the Butler house – the first thing you see a bit off from the road is this:

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The family cemetery sits alone in the woods.

I love old cemeteries, so I parked Shamu, grabbed my camera and off we went down the path.  The cemetery was founded when General Butler and his wife lost a child, over 200 years ago.

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Stones facing the setting sun.

At this point I am taking photos through the iron bars that surround the cemetery ---so I couldn't get close enough to really read many markers.

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Some lived quite long, but there are several children buried here, and women who died in childbirth or from “consumption”.

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General William Butler’s head stone.

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More about Col. Butler

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More info.

When a life span is listed on a head stone…birth date, and death date for the world to see, I often take into consideration what it was like when that person lived.  What they thought about, dreamed about, took pleasure in.  We are all here for such a short time.  What mattered to them?  I like to think it was much the same as it is today in many ways.  Family, a home to call their own, food to feed the many, and togetherness at the end of the day, watching their children and grandchildren grow. 

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Front of the Butler house.

Before I arrived in Carrollton, I had never heard of the Butler Family.  Percival was with George Washington at Valley Forge.  He probably never gave thought that his house would still be standing and it would be visited by so many each year.  He probably never thought he was “making history” during the Revolutionary War, just doing what needed to be done to secure independence for this land and his family.

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Detatched kitchen from the back.

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Forsythia in the garden blooming.

I love history, and this kind of historic house thing is right up my alley.  I wish I could have gone inside – but we’ll have to plan for that another time!

However, there are PHOTOS available on the Butler House website HERE. Check them out!

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Because it is dreary and rainy outside..I have plans to finish the five remaining blocks for Joy’s baby quilt! I brought fabric for the sashings and borders and maybe I’ll have a top together before we head back home tomorrow.  

I had thought of doing some fun pieced sashings with it, but this is a BABY quilt.  I’ll save that idea for another quilt down the road.  Sometimes simple is best and I just need to get this DONE!

Love from Buck Mountain-

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Friday, April 18, 2014

Making The Trade!

I did something this past week in Tennessee that I have never done before.

I just became a MACHINE SWAPPER!

As in – “Yes dear, I can justify bringing this new machine AND her cabinet home with me because I did not BUY it, I swapped it for one I already had!” 

Does it matter that the machine and cabinet traded for are way larger in size than the one offered in trade?  No…bigger than a bread box did not come into the equation at all.

The little photo you see here is of a Singer 24 chain stitch machine that though lovely, I was not using. Click HERE for more info!

Diane had talked to me about this machine previously, and it had become part of our regular conversation banter: “If you find you don’t want that machine, talk to me about it!”

The moment arrived!  Diane had posted that she was considering "re-homing" her 3/4 sized parlor cabinet, and I offered up the 24 in trade.

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Sure I have room for a cabinet in the back of Shamu!

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And the machine? She takes up no space at all!

I drove from Tennessee to Kentucky and back home again with the cabinet and machine safely in the back of my van.

Lela, the Singer 24 has found a new home with Diane, and I have finally found the 3/4 sized treadle cabinet I was looking for!  And while I thought I was only getting the CABINET, Diane sweetened the deal by giving me this sweet little Singer 99 to go IN the cabinet.  How could I say no?

This morning we headed up to Quilt Villa and I have placed the cabinet under the window in the sewing nook area in the basement.

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Doesn't take up much space at all!  Does it even look like a sewing cabinet?

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Open the lid, and there she is!

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She’s got a great view from here of the Blue Ridge Mountains!

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A view of my work area – yes, that baby quilt is being worked on while I’m here.

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Cute accessories box on the inside of the door!

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Check out the pedal!

The petal is cut from the wood floor of the cabinet, and has a rubber “Singer” mat affixed to the top.  This is a very quiet pedal system, no “clanging” at all!

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EG055947 means she was born in  1950 and she is wearing a blue centennial badge!

In her earlier life she WAS a motorized machine, but Diane gave her a motorectomy and switched out her solid hand wheel for a spoked one for use as a treadle.  The cabinet itself is earlier in an art deco style.

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Using my favorite tubing belt and connectors!  Click HERE for more info on where to order!

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This little bit of retro also came home with me.

Up at the cabin, we can get power outages, and digital land lines don’t work if there is no power, so as a safety measure, a REAL phone still works!  I plugged it in this morning – We called it and OH, how I love the ring of a REAL PHONE!  How funny that I had to find this at an antique mall when it was such an every day item growing up.

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Our cloudy view as of right now.

I’ll be working on this baby quilt this evening, and a bit tomorrow.  Today we stopped to visit our friends Rick and Mona, and finding out they had no plans, we invited them over for dinner tomorrow night.  Our first dinner guests with friends from our “neighborhood” on the mountain. 

Now how to figure out how to not freak them out over the fact that there are now FOUR treadle machines living at Quilt Villa.

Maybe, just maybe, they won’t notice!

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Sew Expo Show and Share!

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My favorite time of the day!

Show & Share happens at the end of lunch before we get back to working on our designated projects –and it is so GREAT to see what the students bring to class!

A couple of years ago I taught at the Bluegrass Quilt Festival in Kentucky, and students were bringing back tops and quilts they had finished since then.  I know they put in a ton of work on these, and to see their fabrics and color choices is just thrilling for me.

This top is Virginia Bound from my book Scraps & Shirttails.  I’ve loved this quilt in every color combo I’ve seen it in!

Including this one:

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The quilting texture showed up so well on this one!

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Celtic Solstice made it to Show & Share…in KING SIZE!

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And one in the smaller size ((Which is still plenty big!))

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So Did Star Struck in bright wonderful colors!

((You will find Star Struck under the Free Patterns tab at the top of the blog))

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Christmas Lights was the first mystery I did with Quiltmaker Magazine ---

You can also find this pattern toward the bottom of the Free Patterns tab, down where the archived mysteries are.

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A Wonderfully Off Center Scrappy Trips from the Free Patterns tab!

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Here’s another Scrappy Trios nearly king sized!

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Oklahoma Backroads from the Free Patterns tab made from a jelly roll.

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Ginny made Four by Nine using one of my Addicted to Scraps column blocks as her inspiration.  LOVE THIS!

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Pineapple Blossom from the Free Patterns tab!

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Easy Street from MORE Adventures with Leaders & Enders has made it to top status!

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This is ALSO Easy Street, in a different color way – quilting done, and binding in progress!

Thank you ladies, for bringing your quilts to share and inspire us to sew up those scraps!

If I am coming to your area, please bring your quilts to share with us during our workshop day.  I love it, the class loves it, and we get to cheer you on for your hard work.  Even if your guild forgets to mention it, just bring them. I love to see them.

I want to wish everyone a Pieceful Good Friday and Easter weekend.

I have pledged to my heart and to my family that there will be no “WORK” for me until  after Easter Sunday.  These three days are for reflection, reconnection, counting blessings, rededication, and most of all…REST.

Have a great weekend, Everyone!

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Thursday, April 17, 2014

Stopping for a walkabout!

Long car drive days mean stopping every couple of hours to stretch my legs and work put the kinks in my back.

Isn't it fortuitous that I just stumbled upon this antique mall near Charleston, WV and that there is also a Chinese restaurant around the corner for lunch?!  

It's just road trip karma watching over me!

I found another little universal travel iron in its original box for $10 and a fire king bowl to replace the one I broke for $12!

After a bite to eat I'm back on the road again--you all know the song!!

Building Houses, Building Friendships!

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Love these girls!  How fun they are to be around!

We joked and laughed and encouraged and arm twisted – they came to me right off and said that they wanted some help in NOT being so matchy matchy…and every time I made a suggestion it was….”I don’t know if I can do that!  You want me to put what where?!?”

Hahahaha!  But by the end of the day they HAD pushed their boundaries and the houses were so much more interesting because of the fun mix of fabrics they were finally allowing themselves to put next to each other.

Sometimes it is baby steps when it comes to letting go and letting the scraps play where they might class a bit more loudly than you are used to, but it makes for a much more fun quilt to work on, and the blocks never get boring this way!  Go for the unpredictable!

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Neighborhoods growing as houses are erected one by one!

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Once we get them “On the tilt”  They get really fun!

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Happy Houses, Indeed!

I’ve uploaded all the other photos into a slide show for your viewing pleasure!

Click the image below if you are unable to view the slide show on your mobile device. You’ll be taken to the photo album for viewing.

Happy Scrappy Houses, Carrollton, KY 2014

After class was done, and the van was loaded --I did what I'd been wanting to do since Monday --It was only 4pm and I had an hour to head downtown and check out that antique shop that was closed on Monday when I had walked by.

And I found THIS:

Vintage Iron Love!

This is a twin to the same universal iron I already have, but this one is like brand new, never been used, in its own original carrying case which says "travel iron and sewing kit."  SEE the goodies in the lid??  It also has the original box!  I'm
tickled to find it!

I'm on my way home this morning -- who knows what goodies I'll find along mjy route -- it's going to be a long day.  It's a 9 hour drive.  The MP3 player is loaded with audio books and I'm hitting the road...

Catch you from home!

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