Thursday, May 31, 2012

Ten More QOV's

These ten Quilts Of Valor will go off to Alycia in Colorado who will distribute them to Wounded Warriors. Alycia has contact with the chaplains in the military bases and responds to their request for these quilts as needed. This energetic lady oversees the presentation of hundreds of quilts a year to wounded soldiers returning from war, she drives all over Colorado in her van packed to the roof with quilts.  You can see how she does it on her blog here.  
This first quilt was made by my friend Sharon and is the last quilt she completed before her unexpected death. I wrote a note to go along with the quilt so the recipient will know that the person who made this quilt cared deeply about our heroic military.
Sharon's quilt.
The next 4 were all constructed by another Colorado friend Nancy who loves to foundation piece these scrappy quilts for our military members.
The first three I quilted freehand...........

this last one with a pantograph.
These two came to me finished, with no note of the makers.

Fabric donated by Gale and pieced by Norma.
Angela pieced this patriotic quilt, it has a lovely patriotic backing.
This last one was put together one Saturday by the AZ Huggy Bunch, we combined our fabrics and made the blocks in about half a day.
Here they are all in their presentation cases ready to be boxed and mailed, tomorrow I hope!
I have two more QOV's awaiting the longarm machine and I'll get to them ASAP!

Craftsy BOM for May

These were done just barely in time, tomorrow the blocks for June will be out.
Batiks have sat around too long in my stash awaiting a quilt or two -or more- so the Craftsy BOM blocks will be entirely from batiks. I was able to use  left over strips for these log cabin blocks, neither are the strictly traditional style, one is decidedly "wonky" on purpose, the other has varying widths of strips where the traditional block has strips of all the same width.
Usually Blocks Of the Month run for a year I'm not sure about this one, but I will have 24 of them- all different -by December, that's enough for a lap sized quilt especially if I add borders.
My collection of batiks has very few lights so it's hard to get good contrast but I tried!

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Tuesday Quilt Report

Two of Andee's Schnibbles are quilted, these little quilts are handy for table toppers, wall hangings and new baby quilts.

This one has ribbons and bows quilted with a variegated Superior brand Rainbow thread.

The second has a floral quilting design similar to some of the fabrics and the thread is Superior again, a pink from their So Fine line.

This afternoon I got the borders on this quilt, the "ugly fabrics" in my own stash that I have ignored for so long! They aren't nearly as bad combined with some distracting coordinates, and in fact I really don't mind it at all and won't have to  wear sunnies to quilt it, LOL! The colors haven't come out very true so I may try to take another pic in daylight.
This close up shows the color a bit better.
Then later I cut 56 pairs of 10.5" batik squares for our group project coming up after the Spring Mystery this Saturday- I am hoping there may be enough here for two quilts.
The quilt we are planning to make is this one, called "Arrowhead".

Monday, May 28, 2012

Memorial Day 2012

Gettysburg Address
Gettysburg, PA  Nov. 19, 1863
Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.
Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.
But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate -- we can not consecrate -- we can not hallow -- this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Ugly Fabric Quilt Challenge -UFQC

BJ came for a while yesterday and was cutting her fabrics for the Mystery Quilt next Saturday.
I worked on my personal challenge and gifted BJ with a set of the same basic fabrics so it will be interesting to see what she does with hers! Today should see these blocks sewn together and maybe even borders.
Here again is the UFQC that BJ gave me and below are some fabrics that could work with them.
The red and the green/blue are from stash.
The grey/green and the red from stash, maybe it needs a stronger green?
Ugh, this fishy thing from BJ was tough, but the other three fabrics will, I hope, distract from the fishy fabric that I plan to cut in liiiiiittle bitty pieces!
The blue leafy is from BJ, not so ugly, and I found 3 fabrics that would blend.
When you see these combined with fabrics from my stash, what do you think, will it work?
The plan is for more Paper Piecing as with the previous UFQC but I want to use a different PP pattern, have to look through what I have on hand.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Five Yard Quilt

It has been a fairly productive week quilt-wise and when I tried to link up with Finished For Friday there was no current post, so here's my finish!

The Five Yard Quilt is 66" square and has been added to the "Quilts For Sale" list here. I like the pattern well enough that I am currently piecing another in a different set of fabrics [my own personal ugly fabric quilt challenge, fabrics from my own stash].

The quilting echoes the flower and leaf motif in the fabrics, using a wonderful variegated Rainbow thread from Superior Thread company.

The backing and binding are a Marcus Brother's fabric that coordinates with the front.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Andee's Pineapple Blossom Quilt

Andee's cheery, colorful Pineapple Blossom quilt is all ready to go back to her for binding.
Quilted with Superior Art Studio thread, Yucatan Gold, I love how it looks and how it sews. The design is a freehand all-over leafy floral.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Aussie Burger With The Works!

Last evening JW and I were chatting about the food we eat when in Oz, and primary in his gustatory memory are the great Aussie burgers! They are super huge, a wonderful real bread bun [not the cake-like dough American burgers are traditionally served in] deliciously drippy and filled with oh so many flavors, mmmmm yummy! It made our salivary glands anxious for a repeat so I decided to make them for dinner this evening.
Apart from the ground meat, you also need quite a few fixings that aren't normally found in American burgers.
Now I don't eat beef-well, I have eaten it once in the past 20 years, in Australia. I don't care for US beef, it's corn fed and likely filled with hormones and antibiotics. My body has enough challenges without coping with all of that.
So off to Costco this morning to buy some ground bison for the burger patties. 
The best buns for this recipe that I have found are also from Costco, they are sturdier and better tasting, these burgers need a good hefty bun!
Then you also need a couple of good free range eggs,
 my friend Gale's hens lay these lovely brown, pale green and aqua colored eggs, you'll need one egg for each burger.
In addition, prepare for each burger, a large onion slice 1/4" thick, a slice of strong tasty cheddar, a lettuce leaf, a slice of beefsteak tomato, crispy fried bacon strips, and the essential pickled beets!
A little mayo ..........and ketchup.
The burgers themselves are seasoned with finely diced red onion, salt and pepper and about half a tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce for each serving. I make generous sized patties, 4-6 ozs. each and press an indentation in the center so they cook evenly.
Fry up the bacon and onion rings, then set aside and cook the burgers, about 4-5 minutes each side depending on your taste for doneness and how cold the patties are.The final minute or two of cooking place a slice of tasty sharp cheese on each patty so it melts  little. At the same time grill the insides of the buns and fry the eggs over easy, the yolks should be runny.
Spread a little mayo on the bottom half of the bun, stack up lettuce, sliced pickled beets, tomato, bacon then the burger/cheese and onion and egg on top! A little ketchup on the top half of the bun and there you have it.

Ah, such culinary bliss
One bite down............
? many to go! If you are an eagle eye you can just spot the glass of good red wine to the left of the plate, these burgers go really well with a nice red. This one was a Malbec from Argentina.
Warning, these are multiple napkin burgers.
Served with a wonderful healthy spinach salad!
I just know that when DH sees this post he may be sorry he's in CO. tonight!

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Weekend Sewing

Yesterday Samantha came to sew, her second "lesson".
21x 4 patches are now sewn and this week I think she will try to sew them together. We will report further next  weekend!
Pressing as you sew is a very important step in the quilting process in order to end up with a nice square, flat top, so Samantha is learning how to carefully press all the seams at every step, then how to trim them all to the same size and shape, makes stitching together so much easier.
Thursday this little Olivia Pig quilt came off the longarm machine and is now bound. It doesn't yet have a new home, but would suit a young girl nicely.
The back is pieced from the bits left over..............
 quilted with an all-over freehand echoed heart a nod to the heart fabric in the corner blocks.
Last night the original Five Yard Quilt was mounted on the longarm and may be quilted later today. I took the little fellow to Sunday School when I went to church this morning and he's still here, his Daddy took advantage of the break to go to the gym.
It will be a quieter couple of weeks for me while DH is away in Colorado, I get very laid back about meals, minimal food prep. sort of a mini vacation!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

New Challenges

In the spirit of all the quilt challenges around it seemed appropriate to challenge myself with some "ugly fabrics" from my own stash! Anything I can sew from the stash makes it possible to allow another fabric to inveigle itself into my possession!
This grouping is one of those "OMG whatever was I thinking"?! It has been hanging around longer than it should simply because I have not been able to think of a thing to do with these "interesting" fabrics. There are so many yards of the geometric that I will be using it for backing and maybe borders too, whatever it takes to get it out of my stash!
Browsing the shelves in my studio these fabrics came to light as good distractions from the ugliness of the others!
They actually fit in quite nicely don't they?
Searching for a design that would allow me to utilize these strange fabrics I remembered this Five Yard quilt pattern Leslie sent me and having already used it once I know it goes together fast and easily. This is now "kitted up " and ready to sew.
Then Angela, Modern Diary Blogspot, one of the Saturday group that meets here to sew, invited us all to join Cal's Spring Mystery that will be posted at Quilt Talk .
These are the fabrics the Mystery designer Cal has chosen for her version.
 A search through my stash revealed these fabrics that would suit my purpose. For me, the two greens are close enough to be treated as one color. Unfortunately the purple is only one yard and I will need almost another yard of something similar.
Quiltz had nothing close, necessitating a visit to 35th.Avenue Sew And Vac, where I found a fabric that is similar enough to make do.
The Mystery unfolds June 2nd. when the AZ. Huggy Bunch will meet here to unravel the clues!
Just when I was thinking I had a plan, BJ couldn't resist her own challenge to Andee and me- Andee already blogged about it here but I want to show you the "ugly fabrics" BJ has challenged us to use!
Taken separately these fabrics are not too bad but put them all together and what to do with them? Perhaps three separate projects? Help!  I may have to resort to more paper piecing.........