February 12, 2013

sewing for this holiday

Hello all, Mary Ellen here again. Is Valentine’s Day another Hallmark holiday? Do you celebrate it in any particular way? I should have posted this sooner but just found this compilation of Valentine sewing projects this morning. Some are easy enough to finish up for this year-others can go on file. Of course there is nothing wrong with giving a little special gift to someone for no reason at all. Maybe that’s the best kind actually. This is Random Acts of Kindness week so if your project isn’t done by V’s Day, give it anyway!
February 11, 2013

bits and pieces

Hi again, Mary Ellen here. Early in my blogging adventure with you (I think at our first provider) I posted a recipe for a chocolate cake for one which was a big hit. It was one of those “recipe in a mug” concoctions that you cook in the microwave for really quick results. I’ve found another one for you! This one is a chocolate chip cookie for one-done in about 10 minutes, they say. Can anyone tell I have a tremendous sweet tooth? I never get this excited over broccoli! Here’s the recipe! Fons and Porter are offering a free e-book of Civil War style quilt patterns if you sign up for their newsletter. One of the patterns is for a small Hummingbird/Periwinkle quilt. Here’s the spot. While looking around for more “modern” quilting to write about, I came upon this great tote bag made for a swap the LA […]
February 8, 2013

hummingbird or periwinkle?

Hello all, Mary Ellen again. Yesterday I watched another video from Jenny Doan at Missouri Star Quilt Company where she made her version of the antique quilt that has hung behind her in many of her earlier videos. I absolutely love that quilt. I always knew of the pattern as the hummingbird, but Jenny was calling it the periwinkle. I wanted to find out if they are just two names for the same block, or if perhaps there are small construction variations or proportion variations. Off I went to the site Quilt Index to have a look. I found quilts by both names and was able to take a good look. What I like about this site over some of the other wonderful similar sites is that one can pull up several photos of quilts side by side to compare them very easily. There also is a magnifying feature if […]
February 7, 2013

modern quilting

Hello all, Mary Ellen here. Thanks to all for the kind words commenting on our “thread tales” here. Sometimes I think I’m talking to myself, but now it seems perhaps there are a bunch of good listeners out there. Paula commented that she feels drawn to “modern” quilting. I think I am too, but I’m going to guess that we may have different notions of what modern quilting is. From all the traveling to quilt blogs that I do, I’d say there isn’t a standard definition but perhaps just a few common threads (pun intended). Here are the threads I associate with making a quilt modern: lots of white space, bright colors, light gray used as background, solid fabrics used often, improvisational piecing often, but traditional blocks are very common as well. I’m also often surprised by how many of the younger modern quilters are using templates for their innovative […]
February 6, 2013

Wednesday’s wanderings…

Hi everyone, how is your Wednesday going? Or this week? Or this still somewhat new 2013? I am not even going to ask about those resolutions…mainly because mine are all over the place, just not where they should be, ha! So one of them was (or it still really IS), to have a more regular time for blogging. Really. I am not just saying that because I feel guilty for not writing more posts here, I am not. Truth is, almost every day I have some thoughts I would like to share, some inspirations, I take photos with intention of sharing..and then somehow the day gets away from me… Or, sometimes I start and then think – who needs this? Is this too much? Is this interesting to anyone? I suppose most bloggers have these questions.  So, I am thinking I would like to ask all of you for some […]
February 1, 2013

Downton Abbey again

Hello all, Mary Ellen here. I’ve been working on a UFO hoping to have it ready for the next guild meeting. How are you progressing on your quilting resolutions? I somehow missed this series of posts at the Quilter’s Newsletter blog about the Downton Abbey Sew-In. That would be a good time to reserve for sewing-whether you watch it on Sunday nights or DVR it for later in the week. Wow, what did you think of last week’s episode? Sure didn’t see that coming! Here’s the link to the 4th blog post from Quilter’s Newsletter about the Irish Chain quilt she is working on as she watches Downton. But…spoiler alert! If you haven’t seen episode 4 yet, and don’t want to know what HUGE event occurred, don’t go to the link until you are ready. You could go to site and read the first three blog posts about her quilt […]
January 27, 2013

the power of a quilt

Hello again, Mary Ellen here. I’m not much of a baseball fan. I know just enough to keep up my end of a conversation about the generalities of the game. My sister, on the other hand, is a die-hard Boston Red Sox fan. Really, by her request, she and her husband went to Fenway Park for a game on their honeymoon. It’s a long story for her going back to playing checkers with our grandfather, while listening to the Red Sox on the radio. In the blog entry here, you can read about a quilt moving a tough baseball player, Joe Torre formerly manager of the NY Yankees, to tears. He sponsors a foundation to help at risk school children in NYC who are living surrounded by violence. As a thank you to him and in recognition of the 10 year anniversary of the foundation he sponsors, a group of […]
January 25, 2013

running smack dab into ugly

Hello all, Mary Ellen here. I stole that title from the blog post I’m going to talk about. You know I like scrap quilts if you have read most of my blog posts here. There’s just something about the interplay of the colors and values, and I enjoy imagining where the fabrics came from. What is the story of the quilt? Even though I have made several, I’m not always happy with the colors in my own scrap quilts. I’m getting better, but I have a way to go yet. I’ve learned that smaller pieces are better. I like a quote I read at Bonnie Hunter’s blog (Bonnie will be our 2014 seminar national teacher) “If it’s still ugly, you haven’t cut it small enough.” Truly random placement of the colors works better for me than attempting to have a plan. (Very hard to do for a retired math teacher!) […]
January 24, 2013

The Wrath of the Crazy Quilt Ladies

Hello all, Mary Ellen here. Found a video on YouTube by that name. It actually is from the New England Quilt Museum. A new intern there has made 2 videos about the museum, one serious and this one not so much. Is this what your relatives think about quilts? Check it out here. You’ll find a link to the serious video there as well. Enjoy!
January 22, 2013

Celebrate your local quilt shop!

Hi everyone, MIA-Marija here…finally!! Hope you are all doing great in this still somewhat NEW year and maybe even have a few resolutions intact? 🙂 Not the case with me, but hey – I didn’t even make any! Clever, huh? No not really, but I did declare to myself a “word-of-the-year” to be DISCIPLINE. Well…we can talk about this over pages and pages here, but that is for another time. Today, I want to tell you about much more important thing: Thursday, January 24th is National VISIT YOUR LOCAL QUILT SHOP DAY!!! Yes, yes my friends – we need to go visit, shop, have fun – and it is all legitimate and justified!! YAY!! But wait – that is not all! Industrious, creative quilting community made it into a real, big, national party – there is a web-site , a Facebook page  and even a great photo-contest for all of […]