Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas

All month I've been wanting to make a pile of Christmas tree postcards. Yesterday I got a little time and made this one, it's for you.
Merry, Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Quilt #9: Last but not least

Here's the last finished quilt we're taking to our little friends. Notice I say last FINISHED quilt, of course, mine still needs to be quilted. But we've got enough done to cover our Christmas gifts. This quilt was actually created for a book. I wonder if its young recipient will ever know that. I do think they could spend a while looking all the patterns as they fall asleep. It measures 37" x 37". Look at the quilt back: it's wild too.

Ok, time to vote. Which quilt would you choose to nap with?

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Quilt #8: a sporty quilt

These wonky squares-in-a-square each have a sports theme fabric in the center. Polka dotted and striped fabrics wrap around them. It's all tied together with a narrow striped border. This little quilt measures 36" x 36". Look for the last quilt tomorrow!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Quilts #6 & #7: Theme Fabric

ElfK contributed 2 quilts that are the same pattern. She chose theme fabric: firefighters/primary colors for one (with cool chicks on the back), and flowery pups/pinks for the other (look at the lovely floral fabric on the back). Both are made of 6" squares (42 per quilt) and measure 37" x 42". Her friend ElfN plopped them on her long-arm quilting machine side by side and quilted them quickly. One little boy and one little girl will really like these!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Quilt #5: Nine Patches

Elf C claimed she was using up fabrics for this quilt. Doesn't she have exquisite fabric taste? She also said not to show a closeup of the quilting but you know, this quilt is sturdily quilted and I would not be surprised if it is a lifelong good memory for the recipient. Someday they will think I don't know why but I love those vivid colors of red and turquoise blue together.....Anyway, this one measures 42" x 41".  Remember, you can cast your vote for your favorite quilt after you see them all!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Quilt #4: Batik

The quilter who donated this quilt divulged that she had found this great batik fabric on a sale rack and couldn't leave it there. And suddenly I remember one of my girls when she was little telling me so earnestly about sharing and caring. What a good memory. Elf B is sharing and caring. Now some other sweet little kid will enjoy this quilt. It measures 44" x 44". We all admired the stitching detail for the quilting.....

Friday, December 17, 2010

Quilt #3: Hearts

You know, one of the most fun things about this donation project was seeing what people had stored away  AND feeling like our small quilts are going to a very good home. This Hearts quilt measures 34" x 35". It was a top  -  industrious ElfA quilted it and added a wonderful flannel back. We should vote at the end of all this - which quilt would you choose? Two more small quilts were donated today!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Quilt #2: A hungry caterpillar

Here's the second donated quilt for the lucky kids at First Step. Do you think the kids might try to take this one away from each other? I do, this caterpillar will be popular! It measures 31" x 34"  and also has a flannel back.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Boys in Wonderland

I made this little quilt  (8" x 12") to test a product for C&T's Creative Troupe. And today it appeared on their blog!

The product was Lesley Riley's  TAP (Transfer Artist Paper). The challenge was to use it in a creative way. I'd been scanning family photographs and found an old photo postcard in the pile. Isn't is a wacky photo? I called it Boys in Wonderland because the back  says "Wonderland Post Card Studio, 1206 Grand Avenue, Kansas City, MO." But that is all! There is no other identification, so I have no idea who these fellows are.

After I transferred the photo, I framed it with silks from a box given to me just last summer. I hadn't tried transferring many photos to fabric - I liked how TAP worked!

Quilts for Kids

Our stitch group has taken on a seasonal project. The local alcohol treatment facility called and wondered if we would make quilts for kids whose moms are there undergoing treatment. They wondered if we could make some as Christmas gifts. Our small group responded to this challenge with amazing speed - they dug into their quilt top piles and voila!  I have 6 quilts so far. They are so darn cute I'm going to post them, I think you'll enjoy them.

Elf #1 made this first quilt. It measures 30" square. It's machine stipple quilted and backed with flannel. And look - someone can fall asleep counting their numbers..... 

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Seasonal Improv #1

Here's the first little quilt I made from the pieces I started out with a while back....I started out with little scrappy centers and cut strips to add around them log-cabin style. Some are batiks, some are lovely quilt shop fabrics, some are old shirts......this little quilt measures 24" x 24" and will be hanging in my mom's kitchen when the binding is on (soon!). More to come, I'm working lots these days but this piecing is making me so so happy!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

The sesquicentennial and more.....

A treat always waiting in my morning inbox is A.Word.A.Day by Anu Garg, courtesy of

I see words I know and words that I do not know. I learn something most every day. Yesterday's word caught my eye as we are busy putting the finishing touches on a book that celebrates the upcoming Kansas Sesquicentennial (150th birthday) by Linda Frost, a fellow Lawrencian and quilt guild member.

The word is sesquipedality. Anu explains: "Literally speaking, sesquipedality is using words that are one and a half feet long. A related word is sesquicentennial (150th anniversary). Nothing wrong with using a sesquipedalian word once in a while, if it fits, but it's best to avoid too many long, polysyllabic words. This dictum doesn't apply to German speakers though, as Mark Twain once observed, "Some German words are so long that they have a perspective." "

I'll show you Linda's book cover soon. You'll note we steered clear of the LONG S word.....we are lobbying to have the felt sunflower included. Maggie Bonanomi acquired it when she was a Kansan. Now that she is a Missouri resident, she passed it on to me........

Monday, December 6, 2010

Behind the scenes with Maggie

Photo courtesy of B.Grubb
We're putting the finishing touches on a new book by Maggie Bonanomi. I'm eager for it to be ready so I can tell you all about it. Today we photographed some items for the cover. There's always a little down time in a photo shoot. As we visited during a lull today, Maggie mentioned that she had recently been working on a small drawing for a tattoo.

I was fascinated. Maggie can draw! If the book business folds, there could be a new career waiting for her. Get your favorite primitive tattoo, by Maggie! We tried out a few designs, what do you think?

Friday, December 3, 2010

A great quilt seen at guild

Our last quilt guild meeting of the year was a fun one. Some people bring things to sell and other people do quick demonstrations of things we like to make. I showed several people how I make toothbrush rugs. One woman watched and told me her mother used to make them.

When it was time for show and tell, that woman showed us a quilt she had finished for her mother. Marilyn McClure's mother, Ruth (Seal) Chapman of Wakefield, Kansas, allegedly never threw anything away. She had a quilt top she was meaning to finish and Marilyn loved the top so she kept an eye on it. When her mother was 85, she admitted she would probably not get to that top. So Marilyn took it home, hand quilted it, and brought it back for her mother to use. And she did use it. When she moved to assisted living, Marilyn brought the quilt home. I love the story and I love the quilt! It is so totally scrappy.......I had a hard time identifying the block in the Encyclopedia, so I made a lifeline call to Barbara. She . thinks "it's an Ocean Wave with a nine patch for the square. I was fascinated by it too. Here's a picture from BlockBase. It's actually not in the book Encyclopedia. It's something Penny added to BlockBase. Seems to be KCS 1942."

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Happy December

There have been years I have dreaded December, with all the expectation and busyness. This December is starting out more relaxed than some past, to my delight. I always stop by our local Festival of Trees, a creative fundraiser for our local Shelter. Our beautiful Liberty Hall in downtown Lawrence is filled with trees and other creative holiday projects - they were auctioned last night.

I saw several trees that I loved this year. Here's my favorite: Weaving is Believing, made by wonderful art teacher Laura Torres Porter and her students at Bishop Seabury Academy. It's a woven ribbon tree. And look at the topper!

Happy December to you!