Thursday, April 29, 2010

Sallie's Quilt

Hello Everyone,

It's been a long time between posts for me. As usual, it's been busy around our house. We are going to have a booth at the Livermore Wine Festival this weekend. Joe has been busy working on his creations that he designs out of wine barrels all winter long. No matter how prepared we are, there is always something more that needs to be completed.

Our booth will be right in front of the quilt shop, so stop on by and say hello. While you are there, go in the shop a pick up the new Quilt Sampler magazine.....featuring In Between Stitches! We are all so excited and proud to be one of the featured shops.

I'm going to be teaching this pattern at In Between Stitches this I thought I should make the quilt first. (Isn't that a good idea!) Sallie's quilt is inspired by a Civil War dog.....not a person.

So how do you approach a new project? I go to my fabric "mail box" and start pulling out every possible fabric that I think I'm going to use. I look in every plastic bin, drawer, cupboard and closet and then the fun begins. I sort by color and line everything up so I can get a good view of what I have on hand. Each 9-1/2" block requires five different fabrics. I start with my center fabric and pull colors that will compliment the center block. I've used every color I can think of, hot pink, purple, teal, cheddar cheese, red, blue, green and it works!

Here are most of the blocks up on the design wall. I'm always checking to see what colors I need to add or subtract to create a balanced look. I know that all of the blocks will have a black sashing next to them, so I'm not putting really dark fabric in the corners. At this point I'm thinking nice but.........

What a difference a sashing makes! The hodgepodge of color and chaos suddenly becomes radiant! This quilt is going to be fabulous. My t0-do list today includes working on the two remaining blocks and the posts and sashing. I've not yet decided if I'm going to make a blue or a red border. Joe likes the red and he has a good eye for color.

This is going to be a big quilt and soon I'll be moving from the design wall to the floor. Zinny will just love having all of this color right under her little doggie nose.

Time for me to get back to work in my little sewing nook while listening to my favorite music. Have a wonderful day everyone.

As always,

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Is it April or January????

This weather is wonderfully crazy! We love it. What a treat to have snow in April! The best part is that I don't have to rake pine needles. I would much rather hold an applique needle than a rake, but I may just have to push the snow shovel around if it keeps this up.

Whenever this sign is lit up, we know that there is a possibility that we are going to have to break out the shovels and snowblower. Dorrington is about five miles up the road from the cabin.

This is the road as you drive into the little community of Arnold. Population around 3,000, elevation around 4,000. Believe it or not, there is a golf course just to the left of the road. Only the geese are out on the course today.
The temperature dropped rapidly once we started driving up the mountain.

This is looking up our street.

The poor little flowering plum is trying to stand up straight in the backyard.

Poor thing is shivering.

Enough snow pictures, let's get to the quilt pictures. I'm the queen of unfinished projects. I get bored easily if I can't finish up a quilt quickly and will put it aside if something else comes along that I just have to make...NOW.

When I was working at the shop on Monday, Melissa asked me what I was going to work on this week. I'm sure I had a blank look on my face when the dozen or so half-finished projects flashed before my eyes. I've decided to work on Blooms in a Basket...a block of the month from a shop that closed several years ago. To my knowledge the pattern was never published. I love this quilt and why I put it aside, even I can't remember. All of the flowers on the border just need to be appliqued in easy is that. I only have a few more flowers and a few more "dotties" to make (since I changed the borders) and this quilt will be ready for quilting.

So I'll be working on these pretty blooms while the snow covers the pretty blooms outside.
I think I'll be doing lots of cross-hatching in the basket areas.
I'll probably quilt a tight stipple around the flowers.

I also brought up two more projects that I want to work on. There just aren't enough hours in the day for all of the projects I want to complete. I'll be posting more photos this week.

Thank you all for your wonderful comments about Party in the Garden. I appreciate every single one of them more than you will ever know. The patterns are in the shop as of yesterday and will be on the shop's website soon.

As always,

Friday, April 16, 2010

Back to the Civil War Tribute Quilt

Hello to Everyone!

Now that Party in the Garden is complete, it is time to get back to other loose ends that need to be tied and finished. The final applique scans will be finished by the printer on Monday. The pattern is written and just waiting to be printed. The pattern will be in the shop on Wednesday! What a good feeling to have all of this done.

Now it is time for a little R & R at the cabin. We will be spending time with some friends from Texas all day Saturday. Hopefully, they will have their snow boots with them and we can head up the mountain for some fresh air, beautiful scenery and companionship.

Today I got back to the Civil War Tribute Quilt.

Month #4 contains all of the fabric for one 18" block and one 12" block.
I finished the 18" block and now have all of the pieces cut out for the 12" block. I'll get this together tonight.
Look at all of the wonderful scraps that I have leftover for quilt number two! I can't wait to incorporate this fabric will all of the other leftover fabric from the previous blocks.
Hope all of you have a fabulous weekend.

As always,

Sunday, April 11, 2010


Good Morning Everyone,

Here she is.....finally done.

My goal was to get the quilt done by Monday night, which is preview night at the shop. I did it! Now it's time to finish up the pattern on this cold, windy, rainy day in California.

Make sure your speakers are on and enjoy the Butterfly Waltz. Click on the little arrow button to advance each page.

Click to play this Smilebox photobook: Party in the Garden
Create your own photobook - Powered by Smilebox
Create your own photo album

I hope all of you have a wonderful day.

As always,


Monday, April 5, 2010

Let the Quilting Begin

Good morning everyone,

I hope all of you had a great Easter. We did!

I've been dragging my feet when it came to quilting the Party in the Garden quilt. This is the first time I've actually been hesitant about machine quilting. I guess I was afraid that I would not do a good I keep putting it off. I didn't know where to begin or what to quilt.

I filled in at the shop on Thursday, and Lani, a customer, and excellent machine quilter stopped by. She saw my un-quilted quilt and offered me so many good suggestions. She was so kind to go back home and brought back two quilts she'd just quilted to give me some ideas. She also brought me templates and wool batting!

I emailed a note off to Crissie, (here's Crissie's blog ) one of my blogging friends and a machine quilter, and here's what she said about machine quilting.
"I tell my friends I always lay their quilts in my guest bedroom and we TALK! Now, can you even start to believe that one? But it's true! Most of the time we work together and I know what to do and it comes out just like it wanted me to do! Other times I've had shy quilts and they stand off and won't talk, so ....... I give up trying to encourage them, I just go go go for it!"
So here is the beginning of my conversation with my quilt.

My thanks go out to Crissie and Lani for giving me inspiration and just the encouragement I needed to start machine quilting this quilt.

I'll be working the next couple of days at the shop, so progress will be slow, but steady and I'm going to have this done by the end of the week. I feel like this quilt is just "talking up a storm" to me now and I can't wait to get back to our conversation!

As always,


Sunday, April 4, 2010

Happy Easter Everyone

Good Morning,

I hope everyone has a wonderful Easter.

We celebrated our Easter yesterday with all of my favorite little bunnies. All of the girls brought a dish to share and we had a wonderful buffet brunch followed by "Minute To Win It" games. There were times we laughed until we cried!

Here's a recipe for the best bread pudding I've ever tasted! I should have taken a picture, but we dove right into it as soon as it came out of the oven. (Remember, calories don't count on Holidays!)

Peach-Amaretto Bread Pudding

1 (16-ounce) loaf French or Italian bread, torn into pieces. I used a Dutch Crunch loaf of bread.
1 quart half-and-half
3 large eggs, lightly beaten
1-1/2 cups sugar
2 tablespoons almond extract
3 medium-size fresh peaches, peeled and thinly slices
1 cup sliced almonds
1 cup fresh raspberries

Combine torn bread and half-and-half in a large bowl. In another bowl combine eggs, sugar, and almond extract; stir well. Add egg mixture to bread mixture, stirring gently. Carefully fold in peaches and almonds. Pour into a lightly greased 13 x 9 x 2-inch baking dish, cover and let stand in the refrigerator overnight. Bake, uncovered at 325 degrees for 1 hour or until set and lightly browned. Let stand 15 minutes before serving. Serve with Amaretto Sauce. Yield: 12 servings.

Amaretto Sauce
(Make this in the morning while the bread pudding is baking)

1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 cup sifted powdered sugar
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/4 cup amaretto

Combine butter and sugar in a small saucepan; cook, stirring constantly, until butter melts and sugar dissolves. Gradually stir about one-fourth of hot mixture into egg; add to remaining hot mixture, stirring constantly. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens. Remove from heat, and stir in amaretto. Pour over the bread pudding, sprinkle with fresh raspberries and enjoy!

Recipe is from the Quilters Guild of Indianapolis Cookbook

This is easy to make the night before making for an enjoyable, stress-free breakfast.

It sounds like it is going to be a stormy day in California. Hope it is pleasant where you live.

As always,