Monday, January 26, 2015

Hope Academy Placemat Project

I am prepping for a new project with my son's group Hope Academy.  Beginning February 4th, we are going help the kids make placemats for their mom's for Mother's Day.

My idea is to weave strips of fabric and quilt/sew them to a quilt sandwich.

I've collected a dozen or so flannel shirts and the teachers are in the process of helping me debone the shirts.  Once done, I will run them through my Studio cutter and make 2.5in strips

While they are doing that I am making weaving looms and quilt sandwiches.

I am cutting 18x22in cardboard frames.  Then marking and cutting 1/2in slats and 13x18 placemat center.

Then I'm making 15x18 quilt sandwiches using muslin, cotton batting and spray adhesive.

Next I center the quilt sandwich on the loom and trim to fit 1/2-1 inch past the placemat markings.

Using blue masking tape the sandwich is taped to the loom.

Finally, I use #10 cotton thread and load the loom.

One done... nine more to go.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Studio Redo

Back in 2007, when we had some heavy rains, we discovered that the downspout emptied off the roof right next to the foundation and water seeped into my daughter's basement bedroom.  We waterproof painted the corner of the room, replaced the carpet and added a downspout extension directing the water away from the foundation and have had no futher problems since.... until now.

A couple years ago my daughter moved out and the room happily became my sewing room. I hadn't been able to get into my sewing room for the month of December.  I was busy with work and family and holiday plans and travel.  But, on New Years Day I went down to spend the day sewing.  Unfortunately, that didn't happen.   One again, we discovered the rug was squishy wet; this time from the corner all the way into the middle of the room.  We discovered that someone had stolen the downspout extension and all that rain we had in December emptied off the roof next to the foundation and seeped into the room.

We replaced the downspout extension and I ran two dehumidifiers for several days, but the damage was already done.  

My handyman was busy on another job, so my youngest daughter came over to help.  We removed all the furniture and boxes of fabric stash, and cut up and remove the carpet and padding.  I'm glad we did because although the carpeting was beginning to feel dry to the touch... the padding underneath was still wet and some mold was forming.  Luckily, my stash was mostly in or piled on top of plastic containers, so no fabric was destroyed.


You can see the corner we painted with waterproofing the last time.

My handyman stopped by a couple days later and determined that the wood behind the wallboard was rotting.  He suggested cutting and removing about 2 ft of wallboard and checking the extent of damage hidden behind it.  He hopes he might be able to determine where the water is coming in and plug it so this doesn't happen again.  Then we will replace the wallboard and hide the damage with a beadboard chair-rail so we don't have to deal with taping and plastering and sanding and dust!  Then a fresh coat of paint before we have new padding and carpeting installed.  Hopefully, work will begin next week as soon as he finishes up his current job and I  can be back in my studio by Valentines Day!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

UFO-WIP Listing - 2015 January

With the start of the new year comes an accounting and reporting of progress and accomplishments in 2014.  Also an attempt to get organized and plan for 2015.  So,here is my list....

Completed in 2014
2014 (6) Mitten ornaments (jan)
2014 (6) Star ornaments (nov)
2014 (6) Gingerbread Man ornaments (nov)
2014 (6) Tatted wreaths (dec)
2012 Orca Bay
2013 Daisy Placemats
2013 Red/Blue floral placemats
2013 Blue Toil Baby Quilt
2014 (2) blue doggie baby quilt
2014 (2) pink squares baby quilt
2014 Little Brother Quilt
2014 Middle Brother Quilt
2013 Blue floral placemats
2014 (3) Christmas Tablerunners
2014 (2) Cracker Barrel Tablerunners
2012 Christmas Swap Blocks

Waiting to be Quilted
Rosewood Cottage (since 2006) quilting by hand
Monkey Wrench BOM (since 2007) for sale

Class Projects Started
2006 Barn Blocks
2010 Swartz Creek Quilt
2012 Basic Class Wall Hanging…. Borders, quilting
2012 Winston Ways
2012 Turkey Tracks
2012 Midnight FIGHT
2013 Maddie Bea (becky’s barn)
2013 Spring Wall Hanging (WSS project)
2013 Becky’s Barn Basket wall hanging… borders, quilting

2009 1950s Santa
2009 Sunbonnet sue …prairie point borders
2010 Vicksburg BOM 
2011 Cheddar Bowties 2011 Happiness Key
2011 Novelty Quilt (pat sloan)
2011 Dear Jane/Hot Momma Rose
2012 Pillow Cover …assembly
2012 Red/White D4P… (needs quilting/binding)
2013 Celtic Solstice (nov) (clue 1)
2014 Cracker Barrel quilt (jan)… (needs binding)
2014 Grand Illusion (working on clues 2&3)
2014 Blue/Yellow Scrappy (needs quilting/binding)

Kits Not Yet Started
2012 maria’s stars
2012 Black white gray stars
Pastel stars
Pink baby quilt
5-star Table runner
Parisian 20
Cardinal wall hanging (blue)
Quilt Diva
Colonial Christmas
Golden stars table runner
CJ’s care bears
Iris table runner
2 American Dolls
Charm square CW strings
Jamestown landing BOM
Green/pink BOM
Orphan Fan Blocks
Heart Blocks
Pumpkin wall hanging
4th July wall hanging
Recycle quilt teddy bears

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Grand Illuisions update

 I have not made much progress on this mystery... what with a new grandbaby.. who ended up back in the hospital at 3 weeks old with RSV.. but doing better now.  

Then there were all the preparations for Christmas... gifts to purchase and wrap, meals to plan and cook, out of town family to take care of.  

Then the long drive to Maryland to visit the in-laws.  We arrived home with 35 seconds to spare before the ball dropped on the New Year.

So it wasn't until Friday Jan 2 that I was able to put any time into sewing.  Even though I wasn't through with clue 2 double diamonds, I decided to move on to Clue 3 floors and chair backs.

I quickly cut all the strips with my Studio Cutter and began sewing them together.  My easy sewing guide worked perfectly and the strips sets measured perfectly.  But....

After layering and cutting the strip sets to size, the trouble began. 


I played with my seam guide for 2 hours; sewing then frogging; sewing then frogging before locating the correct "scant" 1/4 seam that made these floor and chair back blocks measure correctly.

Once the seam guide was set the sewing began.   I still have a lot more to do, but here is what I have accomplished on this mystery so far:

Clue 1 Broken Dishes and extra HSTs

Clue 2 Double Diamonds and Clue 3 Floors & Chair backs
Now the mystery has been revealed and I am determined to keep making progress on this and not have another UFO to add to my list.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Grand Illusions Mystery Quilt link up

I finally finished my last customer quilt on Friday and am now free to get back to working on the Grand Illusions Mystery Quilt, designed and offered by Bonnie Hunter over at

I completed the first clue of broken dishes...

and I am now working on the second clue of Double Diamonds.

I have all the pieces cut and spent a couple hours last night drawing lines.  Bonnie described several methods for making these units, but I am using the draw the line on 2 squares method. I am also taking the time to draw the second line using my Triangle Buddy.  It is a time-consuming endeavor, but the end result will give me hundreds of extra HSTs to be used for another project!.

I have a dozen or so blocks made and several parts.  I'm thinking about setting this kit aside to start kitting Clue 3.  I'm never going to catch up what with Christmas 3 days away and family visits to host or make.  I would like to have some of each part ready to do a partial assembly.  So, I think that is my plan.  Kit and make just a few of each part and wait for the reveal.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Power Purging

Bonnie has been posting about her 5-minute purges and it is more than past time that I get some purging done around here too.  Items have been moved from room to room for a while to clean up for the holiday festivities and most has been dumped in the guest room

I started with emptying the dining room and removing the dreaded wallpaper.  And by I, I really mean handyman Bob did the work with me directing.  LOL!  I've hated that paper since we moved her 12 years ago.  We had removed a similar paper from the walls of our first house more than 20 years ago and I remember what a nightmare that was.  I didn't have any help back then... but now... handyman Bob to the rescue.

He removed the paper, prepped the walls, cut in and painted in a total of about 8 hours work over two days... completed just in time to set the table for Thanksgiving dinner!

I still need to deal with that shelf in the corner and am in search of a curtain topper, but at least we had a clean and neat space for dinner.  I also have plans to set up an office/work table along that back wall, and maybe make some wall hangings to decorate.

Everything... all the clutter from the living and dining rooms was dumped in here on and around the guest bed.  I forgot to get a picture when I started, but there really is a bed under that mess.

The rocker hubby bought me for rocking my babies 27 years ago has been taking up room in here and preventing me from easily accessing that empty dresser...  So, that got moved downstairs for now.  Eventually my youngest daughter plans on taking it to her home.

With the rocker out of the way I was able to access the desk and dresser area and I sorted through piles of paperwork and stuff and organized my "filing system" for bills and records keeping into hanging files in those boxes on the dresser.   

I belong to several different church and community groups and I have a tote or two for each group with necessary paperwork;  they all got placed into the drawers of that empty dresser.  I still need to deal with the desk top, but it will be ok... for now.

The boxes of toys and other stuff tossed on and around the bed have been neatened up, sent to Goodwill or thrown in the trash.   I used two of the 3-drawer bins I had bought to organize my fabric stash and filled them with all the little cars, planes and McDonalds toys that the grandson plays with when here. I think I need a couple of large totes to put all his stuffed animals, bigger cars and toys in.  This dresser piled with stuffies has several changes of clothes for him and some spares for his brother when he visits too.

In the corner by the bed is an ottoman that folds out into a cot that I hope my second grandson will agree to sleep on one day.  Also a wicker hamper full of spare sheets and baby blankets and some stuffed animals.

The bed is now actually usable ... and I plan to encourage my grandson to sleep in here rather than on the crib mattress at the foot of my bed.  He has outrown that mattress and I am ready for him to be in a separate room. I'm a light sleeper and don't get enough sleep on the weekends with him rolling around or making little noises or laughing in his sleep.

When we first moved here I did that library shelf stenciling and made the quilt and curtains to match.  The original bed was much smaller... looks like I need to make another quilt to fit this queen size guest bed.... and maybe a wall hanging or two in here also.

I am really happy with the results of this purging... hubby is too.  Now I just have to keep it that way!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Grand Illusion Mystery Quilt Clue 2

My daughter had the baby... 7 lbs 5 oz boy!

While middle brother wasn't quite sure what to make of this squirmy bundle...

big brother was thrilled to have a new baby and help out!


They are all home now and settling in.

I am back home now too and have worked on Grand Illusion this week in between everything else that life has thrown at me.  Clue 1 is now complete.

And I have begun cutting on Clue 2.  I've decided to use the 2 square method to make these Double Diamond Blocks.  It is a method that I am most familiar with and since I was having trouble getting my printer to cooperate :p I thought it was easiest.

My friend Bettie is now home from the hospital and happy to have her kit to work on.    I will stop and check in on her progress later today.