Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Recycle, Reuse, Panic!

Anyone who is on the Quiltville yahoo list, knows about recycling men's cotton shirts. Well, I had kinda ignored those posts, thinking, I DON'T need more fabric. So, I didn't pay much attention as to the best methods for chopping these shirts into usuable fabric. Thanks to those that sent me links on the best way to get the most fabric.

Well, one of my customers brought me 140 western style shirts to make 7 quilts. This is what 140 of the puppies look like! That is the 3 overflowing box, and the big box next to it that isn't quite filled to the top! Over the weekend, I did manage to go through two of the paper boxes and have cut those into quite a bit of fabric! I'm surprised how much fabric there is. I did not save the cuffs, collars and yokes. Although after I made my second or third trip to the trash, hubby asks if I am going to save any of those cool snaps to put in the borders! I think not, as those would hard to quilt over and around.
[Note to self: Cut shirts BEFORE vaccuuming the rugs].

I did send her to the website to look at scrappy quilts, but she ended up choosing the "Yellow Brick Road" pattern to make the seven quilts. I want to get the rest of the shirts dis-assembled, then will start laying out color combinations. I will have lots of neat solids, stripes and plaids to work with.

Finished up a couple more T-shirt quilts this week, and got several more in. Graduation is always a busy time!

Tuesday was another day of RAIN! Good grief, we had 10 inches last weekend. Yesterday, we had at least another 10. The creeks around us (Big Cypress and Little Cypress) were over the banks and up to the bottom of the bridges. On Grant, the same creek was actually over the road. Our yard was pretty much under water all day, looked like it did after Hurricane Ike last fall. I drove down to the mailbox since the road was mostly under water. Sure glad I did, because as I was turning back into our driveway, there was a water mocassin swimming across the road. I'm such a woose, even in the big 'ole car I was scared by a 3 foot snake. Maybe because his brother was on our back porch after the last rain. I stayed in the house until hubby got home. Of course he had disappeared by then.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Skyrockets Workshop

Went to a workshop an all day last week, Sally Schneider taught us about making Skyrockets. This was a pretty good workshop, I even managed to get 5 blocks done. I don't have pictures of MY blocks, they are in the car already so I don't forget to take them to the day guild meeting tomorrow.

However, I did take a picture of the wall where everyone was putting their finished blocks. I love it when the students hang their blocks. With all the different fabric choices, the blocks always seem to look good together. There were batiks, 30's prints, random fabrics and so on. The success of the block is due to paying attention to the placement of the value in the block. Darks, mediums and lights. The Rocket part was supposed to the bold or dark part. Now the picture on the left uses a few different backgrounds to give the light effect in the center.

This is one project that I do plan to finish. Guess I better go add it to my UFO list .

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Strip Workshop by Ladies of the Night !

What fun we had at the strip workshop on Saturday! The Ladies of the Night Bee showed us 8 ways to use our 2.5" strips (jelly rolls). I think there were about 40 of us signed up for the workshop, and the LADIES outdid themselves with snacks, doorprizes and hospitality.

"Barbie" showed us "Street Corners" which was probably the best pattern for utilizing Jelly Rolls. I didn't get a picture of her beautiful Blue, Yellow and Green quilt top, but it just screamed SPRING and turned out nicely.

Benedicte "Frenchie" demoed "Spinning Strippers" and other patterns such as "Pasties", "Pole Dancing", "Red Light District" and"G-strings" were presented by other members.

Everyone in the workshop received printed instructions to go along with the demo. What great ideas to use up some of those scraps we've all been saving. I'm really looking forward to making Gails "Twirling Tassles" aka Double Pinwheels in scrappy reds and off whites.

Nita pointed out, that getting the Tassles to twirl in opposite directions is 'all in the shoulders'! What a hoot!

Knitting, Baskets and Quilting

I took a SOCKS 101 class Saturday, and am much more confident in my knitting skills. Still a beginner, but much more comfortable! Now I just need to figure out how to make my tension a little looser. My sock was about 3/4 the size of the class sample, and Nancy's was about twice the size! Our quilting buddies in the Patchwork Friends Bee got a big kick out of seeing the two socks together. Mine was about 1/2 the size of hers. All agreed she needs a little more tension, and I need to loosen mine. NO PICTURES - the camera would have broken.... LOL. The class was at Twisted Yarn in Spring, Texas. Ann was a great teacher and very patient my beginner issues! Thanks Ann! Boy, there were some lucsious yarns there. The shop was a very busy shop with lots of ladies that stop in just to knit.

Next door to the yarn shop was a BASKET shop called In The Works. Nancy and I talked to a lady that was unloading many baskets in various stages of completion. Kinda like our quilt UFOs. Danger Danger Will Robinson! They have a Basket Guild that meets at that shop.

Finished Chloes quilt and showed it at the Patchwork Friends Bee. They were the ones that made the 9-patch blocks for the quilt last year. The FMLC were instrumental in getting this one laid out in a pleasing manner. They suggested the diagonal rows of color and I think it turned out great! If you check the closeup, you can see the freehand feather meandering that I did on this one. The background fabric is good 'ole reliable Kona Snow, and I put a 30's print on the back that has the green and purple in it.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The Cobblers' Kids Have No Shoes

My Friday Bee (Patchwork Friends) made purple and green nine-patches for me las t Fall when I announced that I was going to be a new grandma! I put the blocks together at the Galveston retreat, and am nearly finished quilting it with an overall freehand feather meader. There is a pretty 30's style fabric on the back from the HELLO BETTY, Chloe's Closet line of fabric from Moda. What a coincidence that my grand-daughters name is Chloe!!! She is growing so much, and I haven't seen her since Christmas. Some of my Bee friends say I am flunking "Grandma" because this will be the first quilt poor little Chloe is going to get from her Grandma! Something about the Cobblers' kids have no shoes!

One of the "Things I want to Do/Try in 2009" items was to "Make silver DANGLE earrings". My buddy Linda gave all of us lessons in different jewelry making techniques - at the same time! Bless her heart - she was teaching 3 different techniques and we were all asking questions at the same time about our project. I think we wore her out!

On one side of the room, Sharon was stringing beads making several strands to go with a shell type necklace. Barb was working on a wire bracelet with Swarovski Crystals, and I was working on several pairs of earrings. I think they turned out pretty cool!
After the earrings I saw Linda some of her Peyote stich bracelets. There were so Anthropologie. Anyway, then she showed me how to get started with that, and I completed a couple of inches worth that last evening.

Monday, April 06, 2009

April Showers - At Galveston Beach

Spent another week on retreat. I am so lucky to live in an area where so many 'quilty' things are happening. I'm also fortunate to have so many friends that are also quilters. The FMLC were on retreat all last week at a beachhouse on Jamaica Beach in Galveston. It is an awesome place if you are in the area. We did have rain & grey skies the whole week. The sun literally came out as we were pulling out of the driveway to leave! We almost decided to stay another day- but I had to get back home since my in-laws were visiting from Tulsa.

We worked on Sharons floor quilt as a group effort. She picked some great pinks and greens. Her sewing cabinet that she bought at Houston Market last fall is that green color! This floorcloth was a whopping 50+inches so it kinda took up the whole floor, so the rest of us decided to practice on hers and do ours at home (well, OK, the rest of us still hadn't decided what fabrics to use for ours!).

We brought lots of projects to work on, not all of them were quilty projects. I managed to get several t-shirt quilt tops pieced and put together a top from 9-patches that were given to me by my Friday bee (Patchwork Friends) made of purples and greens. I also put in some time working on my oldest daughters Double Wedding Ring quilt - the top is nearly complete, but not quite. BUT, I also got some beading lessons from Linda. I (with Linda's help) made a couple of pairs of earrings and started a peyote stitch bracelet. Don't see any pictures of those, so I'll have to take some and post those later.

Oh, I finished up that BAMBOO Quilt and gave it to my nephew and his new wife as a gift on Saturday. So it already has a new home. The wedding was at a Unitarian church and the entire back wall was glass windows overlooking lovely gardens, trees, and bi\rds flying around. It made a lovely backdrop to their special occasion.
Looks like Lindsey managed to get a picture of Jon and me after the wedding.