I'm glad you stopped by my blog. I am happy to share all the content with you and hope that you find something here that is helpful. However, everything here - text, photos, recipes, and so on - is my personal property and has my copyright on it. You may only copy and use any of it with my written permission. Ahh, but you already knew that, didn't you?

Monday, December 5, 2016

A Trip to Hamilton, Missouri and the Missouri Star Quilt Co.

We went to see all the wonderful shops in Jenny Doan's domain. It did not disappoint! She has a main street full of quilt shops. I was immediately in quilt over-load.

The first shop we entered was lovely. We were greeted with this display. She is famous for her you tube videos and this is a reference to her latest. The shop was light and airy.
I can't really remember which photo came from which shop, but it really doesn't matter, because if you find yourself in Hamilton, you will visit all of them! This shows a display of Sizzix items. I am a big fan of them and have had one version or another for years.
Another shop with a Sizzix  display.
Think this was their sewing machine shop.
A shop featuring every solid colored fabric known to mankind. This is just one section.
All the displays were fun, but I particularly enjoyed all the antique sewing machines. They were everywhere.
Another fun display.
The floral fabric shop had a cute display of fabrics in florist buckets.
This was the Daily Deal on Saturday. One came home with me.
Notions in the Sewing Machine shop.

This display featured some sweet little aprons.

This is what followed me home. The Wool Shop had yarn as well as fabrics, but the photo I took was blurry, so no point in posting it. I bought three skeins of Kitchen Cotton for dishcloths. Got a charm pack of some Mary Koval fabrics and half a yard of some hex fabric by Bonnie and Camille for Moda. I don't have any plans for either of them. I just liked them. Finally bought the tote size Foldaway by Omnigrid. It's been on my list to buy for a long time. That's all the biggies.
Last, to Jill, Wendy and Barbara - thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment. Jill, hope to see you next year.  Wendy, thanks for the "insider" info on the aebleskiver pan. And a welcome to Meredith who left a comment. If you want to discuss The Autoimmune Protocol Diet that I follow, feel free to email me any time. I would love to share photos of my studio, but I am not home right now. In addition to that, it is a hot mess! It needs some serious work. I am sad to say that it is currently impossible to walk through it, much less work in it. However, you have inspired me to get it in shape when I get back.
Till next time......

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Where Have I Been?????

Well, I have been right here. Life has sort of gotten in my way lately. Like Forrest Gump's box of chocolates, you never know what you're going to get when you have Autoimmune issues. This fall for me it was muscle spasms. No fun with those. Anyway, above is the deconstruction of a quilt in progress. I have one large panel of the backing removed, washed and ironed and ready to use. I was thrilled to find the somewhat tattered quilt at a flea market for a fair price. It is very early. A good guess would put it at 1800-1825. I have not spent any time trying to date the fabrics specifically yet. Prior to this find, the only early backing I had to use was plain cotton or linen.
I have also been collecting, cleaning and seasoning vintage cast iron skillets. These are all made by Griswold. This collection started when we inherited the largest one from my mother in law.  This was something I could do while getting over my cataract surgery.

Vern brought me a stack of feedsacks that he found at an antique mall. They had to be soaked before washing and ironing. I was really happy with the solid-colored ones. They are harder to come by and you really need them to tone down all the prints. You can see my new glasses in the pic. After waiting forever after surgery to get them, they were not correct and had to be replaced. They are better now, but not great. Think I picked the wrong frames and the bottom of the lens sits too far down on my face. So I have issues with close up work. Aaaarrrggghhh.
And last, but not least (in his opinion, anyway) is this 18 pound mess that got into a fight with a stray cat and had to visit our vet for an antibiotic shot and a painkiller shot. He seems to have recovered.
Well that's it for now. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving Day.

Friday, September 23, 2016

What Is Happening Here....

Washing and ironing fabrics.
It has taken me since June to get my health under enough control to have cataract surgery. I had my second eye done a week ago. Hooray! It will be the end of October before I can get new eyeglasses. Sigh. So, even though my vision is greatly improved already, I can not see with my old glasses and can't see without them. It is making me crazy. I use readers for up close, but they really don't work well. So, to occupy myself, I am washing and ironing 1930's fabrics that have been stashed away.
Above are some nice size pieces that I have found. Usually the pieces I find are not so nice, size-wise.
These are pretty nice, but smaller. Sometimes I take quilt tops apart. Above are some nice setting triangles and (my favorite) plain alternate blocks.
This is part of a pile that came from some unknown lady's stash. Each piece was tightly rolled up and tied. It is amazing to me that they survived since the 1930's. I bought a bunch of ziplocks full of the little bundles in an antique store. It was extremely time consuming to untie each bundle, hand wash them, soak them if necessary, starch and iron them.
Of course sometimes I come up with quilt pieces. This is another pain in the neck to get to a usable state.
Once in awhile you get lucky. I found these at an antique shop in Paducah when we were there for the quilt show. Some of these are cut from yardage. They were priced by the piece and not by the yard. I just cut off a piece of each one and didn't wash the entire yardage. It would be a good guess that a quilter from the 1930's had quite a stash of fabrics.
This answers one of the questions that people ask me the most - where do you get your fabrics?
Till next time.......

Tuesday, September 13, 2016


I have talked about "The" Red and White Quilt Show before. However, I had yet to buy the book that accompanied the show. Why? Well, because the publisher's price was $60.00. Don't get me wrong, I have spent that much (and sometimes more) on books before, but I have to think about it. When this book was offered for $2 4.95 by Edward R. Hamilton Bookseller Co., a copy was finally mine. Sadly, I can't figure out how to link this with my Kindle, but you can find it easily. One thing to note is that I don't order off the net, as I get a "not secure" notice. So, I get a paper catalog and order the old fashioned way by mail and check.

Oh to have been there in person! But the book is wonderful.
My interests are far ranging when it comes to books. I also ordered the following book. It was published at $50.00 and it was offered for $4.95.

 I also got a really interesting book about English history.

It contains reproduced stereoscopic cards of village scenes, as well as a newly designed viewer that folds flat. That is a very brief description.
Hamilton offered this $60.00 book for $6.95. But the really interesting thing about this book is that one of the authors is Brian May, who is a founding member of the rock band Queen - he is a guitar player and vocalist. He made his guitar , by the way. Not only that, but he has a PHD in astrophysics. I am not making this stuff up, although it probably sounds like it! He also has an asteroid named after him, as well as a species of damselfly, due to his work to preserve animal species. He got interested in stereoscopes in the 1970's. He designed the one included with the book.
All this goes to show you that you can't judge a book by its cover. Pun intended.
Till next time.........

Edit:  Forgot to mention that the shipping and handling charge when you order by mail is $3.50  no matter how many books you order. I think it is slightly higher for net orders.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

My Work Station

This is a lap station designed to be used with laptop computers. I use it for hand piecing. I can put a Kindle in the slot at the back. Sometimes I download a movie or television show during the night (we pay for high speed internet, but we are at the very edge of the service zone and we get a slow service) and I can watch it while I sew the next day. Plus it is handy for looking something up on the net or checking my email. There are two padded arm rests at the front edges that I stick my needle in while clipping threads. I took the photo with everything sitting on the table, but I actually sit it on my lap while sitting on my loveseat with my legs up on a footstool. As you can see, my pieces are kept in ziplock bags to avoid losing them. The block shown on the right is just a sample block. The hardest part of making a miniature quilt for me is the hand quilting. The sample is for trying different quilting ideas. More about this project on another day.
Other things - Karen asked if I liked the book Indigo Quilts. Yes, I like it very much. There are 30 featured antique quilts, 5 of which have patterns and instructions. The applique patterns are full size, which is a nice plus. There is also a history of the indigo dye itself.  So, for me, it is a perfect book. As amazing as the red and white quilt show in New York was, I have to say that my heart has always belonged to indigo and white quilts.
Till next time......

Thursday, August 11, 2016

A Trip to Paducah

First stop-Hancock's of Paducah.
One small section of fabrics.
One small section of patterns.
What came home with me. Notice the white base in the upper right? It is a little collapsible LED light. Our electricity was off for awhile, so I used the little light. It collapses to a flat rectangle and fits in the box shown. Think it will be great for the camper.
Same stuff, light on the other side.
The Yo-Yo Ladies quilting at the National Quilt Museum.
Another view.
A poorly lit photo of Judy  Schwender.
She is the curator of collections and registrar at the museum.
I bought this book and the tiny 25 year anniversary pin at the museum quilt store.

A peak inside.
And last, but not least, a purchase from Hancock's. The new issue of Quiltmania. It has a new feature with Gerald Roy.
In this issue he writes about crib and doll quilts. It is a wonderful article.
I made a couple of other stops at favorite places, but they weren't quilt related.
Before I sign off, thanks to those of you who stopped by a left comments. You are the reason why people love quilters! 
Till next time......

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Museum News

Remember this little guy?
Just got an email from Judy Schwender at the National Quilt Museum and my quilt was selected with 14 others to travel to the Tokyo Quilt & Stitch Show in September and the Osaka Quilt & Stitch Show in December. I am very honored.  
Till next time.....

Thursday, July 21, 2016

What I'm Up To...

Hello to everyone!
I am doing a test post.  Trying to see if it's possible to do a post with a tiny Kindle.  I love my Kindles - yes there is more than one around here. This one has a camera and I wanted to see if it is good enough. Let me know how it shows up.
I have been sick for quite some time. Cataract surgery has been scheduled for me several times and cancelled due to other health problems. So, since my eyesight has taken such a hit, I have switched to crocheting and knitting.  Hopefully a crocheted lap size afghan will materialize, and am doing some gift packs of dishcloths. 
I would like to say hi to Jill and my other friends out there. Vern and I probably won't be able to make any meetings this year. He is working out of state right now and is coming and going with a crazy schedule. 
Well, I hope this works o.k.  I absolutely hate the computer in my studio. It is very difficult to get anything done on it and discourages me from blogging. Plus I haven't even felt like being in there.  Hopefully better days are ahead.
Till next time....


Thursday, June 23, 2016

Checking in with you....

Here is a miniature that I actually finished at the end of 2015.  It was inspired by a quilt pattern in the book Family Ties Old Quilt Patterns from New Cloth by Nancilu Butler Burdick.  "Patterns and interpretations of the work of early quiltmaker Talula Gilbert Bottoms" is written on the bottom of the cover.  The other book is Legacy The Story of Talula Gilbert Bottoms and Her Quilts also written by Nancilu Butler Burdick.  Legacy was the first one, copyright 1988 and the other was copyright 1991. 
Talula Bottoms was a remarkable woman making between 200 and 300 quilts under circumstances and conditions that we today have trouble imagining.  Talula was born in 1862 in the south, so you can fill in the rest.  Her granddaughter, Nancilu Burdick wrote these books and her perseverance and research into her grandmother's quilts is to be admired.  I love both of these books.
Above is the quilt and pattern in Family Ties that inspired my miniature.  What I loved about Talula's quilt is the use of muted 1930's fabrics.  Sometimes the fabrics from that era can be overwhelming, but Talula chose fabrics that imparted a soft and calm look to the finished quilt.
I used 1930's fabrics as well, and the background of the blocks is actually a print, although in the photo it reads as a solid.  The blocks are 2.5" finished, the sashing is .25" wide and the overall size of the quilt is 13.75" x 16.25".  With not one exception, everyone of my friends that saw a block said:
"Aren't these kind of big for you?"
Well, maybe so, but it was the best I could do.  I needleturn appliqued the wings and bodies and then buttonhole stitched the wings by hand. Using a fusing technique would make smaller blocks possible, but the look would not be the same, in my opinion.   The antennae are hand embroidered.  My goal, as always, is to have it look like a full sized quilt in photos. Oh yes, I used vintage ric rac for an edge finish which is an idea I have been kicking around for a long time. I love working with 1930's prints and solids.  They are so much fun to put together.
Now for a big shout out to Wendy Caton Reed who is featured on a Barbara Brackman blog hehttp://civilwarquilts.blogspot.com/re. 
Way to go, Wendy!  Read Wendy's blog at http://theconstantquilter.blogspot.com/ 
Well, till next time..........

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Grover and me,

Remember when I showed you a 4" bow tie block?  Well, I thought I did, but can't find it now.  It was part of this project.  Sue Reich asked me if I would make a 24" square quilt featuring Grover Cleveland for her Presidents Book. Grover and I  are shown together at the Civic Center in Paducah during the past quilt show. Here is a pic of the book.
Here is Grover on page 96:
Here are the rest of the quilts displayed at the Civic Center:

Sue had supplied us all with the photos of the presidents and gave us guidelines for size, etc.  She also requested that we use either period fabrics for our pres., or appropriate reproduction fabrics. I used all antique fabrics and hand pieced and hand quilted it.  I was honored to have participated in this project.
Enough about quilts! Here is a current pic of Gizmo:
He is on top of "his" cupboard on the very first quilt I ever made.  It might be the most awful quilt in existence.  I am thinking it is a perfect match for the Giz.
On a personal note, why haven't I been blogging?  Well, there is a couple of reasons.  I haven't been well and haven't spent any time in my sewing studio.  That is where my computer is kept.  So, if I'm not in the studio, I'm not blogging.  Hope to remedy that. 
Till next time....