Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people. Eleanor Roosevelt

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Floral Signatures

Over the weekend I finally managed to get all my roses together in a quilt top. Notice the one empty middle. That's mine. Funny how I hounded everyone else to finish their block and mine still isn't signed. But I'm waiting for the perfect words to pop into my head. 
Just like I'm waiting for the perfect stitches to work their way through my finger and finish this quilt. Hasn't happened yet. I had such high hopes of finishing this last night. Maybe today will be better. 

Take care, Brandie

Monday, April 28, 2014

Gold Nugget Dresses

Happy Monday to you! How many of you have sewing plans today? I know I do! I have been quilting up my signature roses. If all goes well (my back) I'm hoping to have this quilt done today or tomorrow, well just soon.

This weekend was the local hick tradition of Gold Nugget Days. We actually started the weekend on Thursday crowning the queen but I couldn't get all the pictures I wanted and I knew that this weekend I could plus there would be much better light.
So here we go with a dress show!
Starting off is my dress with Lexi in it! No more mannequin pictures for you all!
She was escorted by her friend Kelly and I think they are so cute together! Added plus, they had fun.
Another fabulous green dress. I loved the yellow ribbons and the detail that went into them.
This dress was my tiny cousins favorite. She thought this was Cinderella.
One of my favorite outfits. It's a riding costume. The stripe fabric was wonderfully executed.
One of the runners up and her escort.
My personal favorite! This dress was wonderful! Her Grandmother made it and she did a great job.
Another runner up.
And another.
And this is 2014 Miss Gold Nugget Queen. My Husbands little cousin. This is a first in our family. Years ago her mother placed, her aunt placed, 2 other cousins ran but this is our first winner.
The Queen and her entourage.
Showing a bit of bloomer.
Just the ladies.
Every time I do this I learn more. Every year I'm blown away by the talent. It may be a hick tradition but I enjoyed my tiny part in it and dare I say I might want to do it again?

Tomorrow I'll be back to show you what I've been working on. These fingers may not have been typing but they have been busy sewing!

Take care, Brandie

Friday, April 18, 2014

Doll Quilt Swap

Look what came in the mail! This is what my swap partner sent me. I'm super excited and totally thrilled with my gorgeous little quilt!
My favorite part is the beautiful indigo toile. I love toile in any color. 
My partner Karen did good! And did you see those perfect pinwheels!? Wow!
Last night our small group got together to work on our HSTs. Remember these?
We finally finished all the blocks. Now I just need to trim them and get that top together. So probably by next year you'll see the finished quilt!

Enjoy your Easter weekend!
Take care, Brandie

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Math in Quilting?

We are never to old to learn and according to Dr.s and scientists, it does our health good and keeps our brain supple, it's good for us 
Which is what I did yesterday, I learned some new tricks. 

Fellow blogger Lynn (sewninwildoaks) came to my hometown, which use to be her hometown! How exciting is that!?
I was super excited to meet her and her sister Gail and to see all her gorgeous quilts. And even better I was a human quilt rack during her lecture which means I got good quilting cooties all over me!
Lynn is a fabulous speaker. She's funny, inspirational and a really good teacher!
Look for her in your area soon because she will be going places! 

During our class Lynn taught us how to make blocks with different components (like the picture below) BUT with all those components being the same size. 
We didn't learn to make a block, we learned how to make ANY block in ANY size we want. 
Lynn taught a few simple math rules that really help achieve the perfect block. Even for me who is the worst piecer ever! Piecing is not my go to. If I want perfect quilt blocks, I appliqué them. Its much easier for me than piecing. 
With Lynn's book and all her help I'm hoping to turn over a new leaf and become a better piecer. Her book will be my go to from now on. I want to make it stick  in my new young and supple brain and maybe by next year I'll actually have a 30 year old brain. 

I really wanted to excel at Lynn's technique, I wanted to make a good impression. But as usual that back fired on me. The very first block we made (HSTs), I managed to screw up.
We layered our fabrics, drew lines and then cut through those layers ending up with 8 HSTs. It was pretty nifty!
But when it came time to trim those ears and wobbly edges, my blocks didn't come out correct. So I made another set because I wanted to figure out what my problem was. Did I sew too wide? Did I cut too narrow? Or did I just have fat thread?
It wasn't till later that afternoon that I figured out that it was really my eyesight that was wrong. My blocks were fine, in fact they were still needing to be trimmed. So why did I think they were wrong? Because I didn't know how to read my new ruler. Yup, I'm that silly. 

It was a really fun day and I highly recommend Lynn's book or her class if she comes to your area. 
In June she will be teaching all of us from her blog, so we can all learn and be better piecers. I can't wait! We are never too old to learn!

Take care, Brandie

Monday, April 14, 2014

Rose Buds

After a few days of playing with scraps, I finally have a couple blocks that actually look like roses, I think. Either way, I really like them!
Or they just look cuter than my first attempt. Which leads me to really think, I need to redo it. I just don't like this purple rose compared to those cute buds above. 
I'm still waiting for the return of the other blocks (should have put a due date stamp on them) but I'm getting really good at making them now! So they should go together quickly. Then on to the fun part of adding them all together. Thank goodness they are cute and the colors are so happy!

Have a Wonderful day!
Take care, Brandie

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Diamonds and Berries

My little Civil war quilt is just about ready to send off to its recipient. I sure hope she likes it. 
Don't tell, but it's bigger than it's suppose to be.  I'm hoping I don't get kicked out of Lori's club for not following the rules!
Did you notice the diamond border?  (How could you not!) They are stuck in my head! Those Soupçon quilts are becoming even more addictive. They spilled over into another quilt. But I think it looks good and it makes a nice frame around those berries. 
My plan today is to finish the quilting, bind it with that same indigo and ship it off. I'm off and running!

Take care, Brandie

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

An Idea

My friend Boonie will be celebrating her 90 th Birthday this June. To commemorate this special day, her DIL (my aunt Cheryl) and I came up with the idea of making a signature quilt. 
But I wanted something a bit more than a strip quilt, I wanted something special. And because Boonie loves flowers I pulled one of my favorite books from the shelf and started collecting fabrics. 
I love this rose quilt and I think Boonie would too. This is where the inspiration starts. 
Boonie loves pastels. In fact, one of her outfits that I love to see her in is a turquoise suit. She dresses to the nines even on a shopping trip, the whole ensemble. Matching shoes and purse, matching rings and earrings and she tops it all off with a hat! 
I cut up large-ish squares of these solids and sent them to all the aunts and uncles for them to write a birthday sentiment. The rose print will be the backing and the pale blue is the background for my roses. 

Last night my first block returned home! And of course I got right to work playing. 
But now I'm not so sure I'm in love with my rose. 
Has anyone else seen Kimsbigquiltingadventure and how she made her roses? I tried to copy her style but it may be easier for me to make them round like in the book. Or it may be that I have too much pattern going on in my flower. Or I'm just being too critical of something new. What do you think?

Enquiring mind at a loose end...

Monday, April 7, 2014

Weekend Stitches

I'm loving how this block is coming along! But I love the look of berries so I'm an easy sell. The poison green and madder red are working very well together. And I had to add a few cheddar berries, I just had to! After todays chores I'll find another movie (listen to) and finish stitching this block. 
Is anyone else still working on their Soupçon quilts? 
I left off at the third part and just got back to finishing them up. 
For this block I was thrilled to find these four patches in my scrap box. I think it finishes it up quite well. It will make a cute  kids quilt. 
I also worked on this block but only managed to get to part four. I ran out of my next border and haven't found the time to pick more up. That's one of today's chores. 
This a fun block and they all look so different! Some of the other blocks give me serious fabric envy! 

Time for work! The cats are calling and it's time to play. 
Take care, Brandie

Thursday, April 3, 2014

I'm still here!

I didn't mean to be gone so long! That dress has taken up all my time but its finally finished! Now I can get back to my normal routine sewing. You know, other people's mending. What? You don't do mending? It seems to be my experience that if you sew, you mend. Obviously I need to make a huge billboard to go in my yard that says "I'm a quilter, I don't take in mending".
So after finishing up a small pile of other people's problems, I decided to sit down and do something FUN. I pulled out my CW fabrics and started to play. 
I really liked this poison green and this madder red together. Check. 
Found a background and sketched a few lines. Check
Sat in front of the TV and watched "Miss Potter". Very entertaining and some really beautiful countryside.  
Appliqué, just what I needed. Ahhhhh
By the time the movie was finished, I had a very interesting line-art block. What will it be when it's all finished? Stay tuned. 

I also whipped up the quickest quilt I've ever done. And I make no apologies! It's cute enough and I needed a really quick project. This is for a baby shower I'm attending this weekend. 
Not bad for scraps and stash fabrics. The animal print was a large border that was cut from a panel. I had used the panel and this part has been languishing on my stash shelf for years. I used it all up, two pieces on the front, separated by big nine patch blocks, exactly the same on the back. Easy peasy!
Now I hope to get back to MY sewing projects and to check in on all of you!

Take care, Brandie