March 31, 2014

Stars!

Hello all, Mary Ellen here. A while back I posted a link to a paper pieced star that got a few comments. It seems star blocks are pretty popular. I love them, and you probably know I love dresden blocks too. I think this star has a dresden feel to it, so of course it was a hit with me. It is another paper pieced one, which sadly doesn’t appeal to all quilters. In my book though, it’s a great technique for getting those points perfect. Here’s the link: click here. Got your things all set for the quilt show, ladies? Drop off days are just around the corner (this weekend). I finally finished putting the embellishments on the quilt I’m entering. That pesky hand sewing you know–not my favorite thing, but sometimes there is no way around it. What heaven must look like! click here.
March 28, 2014

Tula who?

Hello all, Mary Ellen here. Gray and windy today, but spring is coming. Didn’t need a hat today while walking the dog! To me that’s great progress toward warmer weather. I am intrigued with the work of Tula Pink. She is a fairly new designer on the quilting scene. I first learned of her on a Sewing with Nancy episode and loved her take on some vintage type patterns with very modern looking fabrics and color choices. She designs fabric which makes up into gorgeous quilts (IMHO). I’ve been looking around for a shop carrying her lines without success so far. Does anyone know where I can find a good choice of her fabrics? If you’re on shop hops this spring, keep an eye out for me if you would, please. Here are a couple of links to help you get to know more of Tula’s work: Up close views […]
March 24, 2014

pantone colors

Hello all, Mary Ellen here. A few weeks ago I wrote a post about the Pantone Color of the Year. This color choice actually brought out a few comments from you. Not everyone cared for the Radiant Orchid. Have you noticed its influence in the new items–fashions, housewares, garden departments–that are beginning to appear? I recently read about the Pantone Spring Fashion palette and went to have a look. I will say, strictly from a quilter’s perspective, that those colors in the fashion palette are  showing up in many of the new fabric collections. Have you noticed the influence of grey everywhere? The light green tones? The palette of back up colors (neutrals some call them) is not strictly white and cream anymore. Have a look at the palette, and perhaps you’ll enjoy the 5 minute video explaining the choices. So amusing to me, listening to the artist/fashion designer’s choice […]
March 23, 2014

Bonnie Hunter update

Hello all, Mary Ellen here. I think we have made a very good choice for this fall’s seminar teacher. I have probably received 25 or so inquiries from non-members who are interested in taking a class from Bonnie this fall. They are finding the contact information in Bonnie’s calendar at quiltville.com. A couple of them are planning road trips with friends from distances away (Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Canada). I hope you’ll be joining us too. Bonnie just finished up a teaching segment in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee at A Mountain Quiltfest. Here’s a link to a slide show she posted from her Boxy Stars class. (click here) The students look like they are having fun, and their blocks are great looking. Bonnie will be teaching the Boxy Stars class for us on Wednesday of seminar. Marija has just finished up rounding up our cadre of local teachers for the fall, and […]
March 15, 2014

It’s our weekend!!

Hello all, Mary Ellen here. It’s International Quilt Weekend. Got anything special planned as a way to celebrate? Over at “The Quilt Show” Alex Anderson and Ricky Tims are making all of their shows (all 169 of them) free for viewing just for this weekend. I gave up my paid subscription after the first year, so I’m going over sometime this weekend to explore and see what I can find. I know our upcoming seminar teacher, Bonnie Hunter, has taped some shows with them. So also have many of our past instructors. I’m sure you’ll find shows featuring some of your favorites. It’s only free for this weekend, so make some time for yourself to view and relax.  Click here.
March 12, 2014

a blizzard?!!!

Hello all, Mary Ellen here. Do you think that all the weather forecasters just love these storm forecasts? Last night Don Paul was actually scolding the school superintendents who had not yet closed their districts for today. So far it’s not bad outside–we’ll see what develops. Today is trash day in my neighborhood; I’m hoping I’ll be able to bring the totes back up from the curb before it gets too deep. I stopped in the grocery store yesterday and as often happens with these forecasts, the “joint was jumpin”. Milk, bread, eggs, tp …you native Buffalonians know what to do. I’m planning to do a lot of sewing! Got out some UFO’s. First my Lucy Goosey blocks. Remember those? (Look in the sidebar categories for a memory refresher.) I want to make 2 more blocks for the setting I have in mind. Found this great (if you like paper […]
March 11, 2014

Sneak preview and true confession

Hello all, Mary Ellen here. You all know that Bonnie Hunter is coming to our seminar this fall. (You do know that, don’t you?) She has a brand new book about to be released and is showing sneak previews of the quilts in it over at her blog. If you leave a comment over there,  you have a chance to win a signed copy from Bonnie. click here Now for a true confession. A few posts back I put out a challenge to join in Bonnie’s challenge quilt for this year, called Lozenges. I had said I had a plan to use up my stash of 2 1/2″ strips. Well that was before I thought it all the way through to needing to cut a whole bunch of 1 1/2″ squares to use as the flippy corners. I fess up that the cutting of all those triangles is not a […]
March 7, 2014

Jelly roll 1600, chapter 2

Hello all, Mary Ellen here. What a gorgeous morning we’re having today. I actually got too warm while walking the canine today and had to take off my hat and gloves! When was the last time that happened?! If you’ve read this blog for a while now, you may remember a few posts about the jelly roll 1600 quilts. If you need a refresher, look in the category list in the left sidebar and click on it. Today at Missouri Star Quilts Jenny Doan shows a variation on the basic jelly roll quilt. I love the fabric line she chose, but I think I might have chosen a different color for the “pop” of color she inserts. She gives a few good tips even for those of you who have made one of these before. If you haven’t, you should give it a try. This is a fun quilt to […]
March 4, 2014

Using your scraps

Hello all, Mary Ellen here. Not all quilters enjoy scrap quilting. There is something way too random for the taste of many quilters when you start making a tossed salad of all sorts of fabrics. I’ve made a few scrappy quilts that push the envelope a bit too much even for me. (The dog loves them though; he’s lying on one of them in that photo.) Thus comes the concept of “planned scrappy”. By adding just a bit of structure to the scrappy theme, more quilters can become comfortable with some scrappiness in their quilts. After all, if you are a lover of Kim Diehl fabrics, for example, you probably have quite a few scraps from her lines. They all go together, don’t they? Or perhaps you have blue in every quilt you make. A 2 color quilt with a variety of blue scraps paired with a variety of creams […]
March 1, 2014

Are you up for a challenge?

Hello all, Mary Ellen here. Bonnie Hunter, our upcoming fall seminar national teacher, has just begun a quilt challenge at her blog. Bonnie is a scrap quilter. She doesn’t just collect scraps; she actually makes things with them. (a novel concept to me!). I’m going to try joining in this challenge so I’ll use up some of my scraps too. I might have to tweak the math a bit because I have so many 2.5″ strips that I’d like to use up–hers is going to use 3.5″ strips. Wouldn’t it be great (hint, hint, hint!) if a few of us joined in so we could show her our progress when she comes to seminar in September? I’m going to set aside a sewing day soon to get a bunch of pieces ready so I can use them as “leaders and enders” while working on projects for my classes. Here’s a […]