Saturday, October 29, 2011

Good Times... Good Friends

They say you can't go home again, but I recently had an opportunity to do just that... for my 35th high school reunion. Through the miracle of facebook and the internet (things that were unheard of when we were in high school) some of the guys organized a get-together at The Mason Jar. Sixty of us traveled from all corners of the country from Alaska, Florida, California, Maine, Oklahoma, and Tennessee and some never left New York!

There are lawyers, money managers, and accountants.
Harrison is a screenwriter in L.A.!

Kathleen, as a teenager was always on the campaign road for her dad and has also campaigned for representatives and senators... now is campaigning for herself! Deborah is in busness and finance working for Xerox. Marie has retired to Burgundy, France!

Mark is an RN and Leah is a school superintendent.

Eileen's sister owns a quilt shop in Chester!
I wish there was time to go visit.

Former cheerleaders and twirlers...We even had a teacher attend... Linda Goosman who had to have a picture with her gang!

We missed the many that were unable to attend or whom we were unable to locate. There were some that are now gone who will be forever remembered.

The time flew by quickly and too soon it was time to head home... emails and phone numbers exchanged and promises keep in touch while tentative plans were made for another gathering in 2012!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Cheddar Challenge

Bonnie Hunter, scrappy quilt designer extraordinaire, issued a challenge to all quilters using her favorite color fabric... Cheddar! She wanted to see how many bowtie blocks could be made over the next year as leader/enders. Read her her July 13th post and learn all about it.

My problem was I had no cheddar and was unable to find any at the local quilt shops. So both a good friend and I were heading out of town... in different directions... with the goal of finding some cheddar. I found this bright yellow cheddar and decided to pair it up with some civil war blues and red that I had.

I also found this cheddar... more of a butter color.

My friend Janice found this cheddar..I think it is more pumpkin though. Here I've matched it up with these two choices of civil war fat quarter fabrics in reds or neutrals.

I think the real challenge is deciding what "Cheddar" really looks like! As a friend recently said, I guess it depends on if you want mild, sharp or blended cheddar!

Saturday, October 15, 2011


Lately, I have been working on hand-stitching down the binding on some customer ordered chatelaines. I carry small handwork projects like this around with me to do while waiting on appointments and when I answer the question "What are you making?" with "Chatelaine", it's clear the questioner is not a stitcher from the blank look and "Oh" response I get. So I demonstrate by putting one around my neck and slipping my thimble and small scissor in the pocket. I still get some funny looks, but others think it's a clever idea!

Actually, chatelaines have been around for several centuries...
Here's a definition from Wikipedia:

Chatelaine, 1765-1775 Victoria and Albert Museum no. C.492:1 to 7-1914 Chatelaine is a decorative belt hook or clasp worn at the waist with a series of chains suspended from it. Each chain is mounted with a useful household appendage such as scissors, thimble, watch, key, vinaigrette, household seal, etc.

Chatelaines were worn by many housekeepers in the 19th century. They were also worn by Anglo Saxon women, as seen from the burial record.

The name chatelaine derives from the french term ch√Ętelaine used to mean the female owner, or wife of the owner, of a large house. Originally the chatelaine was designed to have all the tools necessary for the woman of the household to sort out any problem she may encounter in her day, like a fraying curtain, however with time the chatelaine and the objects it held evolved from being a purely utilitarian object into a decorative symbol that reflected the status of the wearer.

There are pictures of some ornate chatelaines, and if I figure out how to copy a picture here I will. If not, you can google chatelaine to see a wide variety of pictures.

I think the mondern-day equivalent could be thought of as a fancy, handy key chain!Mine are simple and utilitarian and made from fabric. Instead of keys, I keep small sewing supplies handy when I'm working at my quilter
(like snippers, pins and seam rippers). I even stick my cell phone in a pocket so it's easy to take calls.

Friday, October 7, 2011

BOMs, Challenges and Sew-Alongs

There are lots of quilting blogs out there and many offer Block Of the Month programs. Here are a few of my current favorites.

Bloggers BOM - each month a different designer will post a blog with their 12 inch block design and by October 2012 you will have enough blocks to make a quilt. I haven't started this one yet, but I plan to catch up by the first of the year.

Mystery Table Runner BOM by Springwater Designs. This is a short BOM... only three months... with only three blocks to make, I'm pretty sure I'll be able to get this done!

Christmas Red and White Blocks by Quilting Gallery - each Friday a different designer will post a blog with their design for an 8.5 inch block and if you keep up you will have a new red and white quilt for Christmas. I just wish I could find my red/white fabric to get started on this one... I may just have to go buy some more!

Crumb Along With Me by Jo's Country Junction... After posting a picture of a Crumb Quilt that she made she was innundated with questions for a pattern. Follow along as she tells us how to make our own crumb quilt.

My Tweets BOM by Erin Russek of One Piece At A Time is doing an applique BOM ...I could only hope to find enough time for this beautiful applique quilt. I'm just following along to see the progress and end result.

I love Civil War fabrics and Barbara Brackman does this weekly posting of blocks and some history surrounding the design that is very interesting. This one is definitely on my want to do list.

This Birdie Stitches BOM by Little Miss Shabby involves embroidering blocks before piecing them into a quilt.

Here is a mini Christmas Sew-Along by Sew Happy Me.

I am participating in the the Cheddar Challenge by Bonnie Hunter

and a Sew Along by Pat Sloan Hurry... the finish date has been extended to Oct 25, so there is still time to complete your project!