Monday, April 30, 2012

Two More Days and then....

I know you are anxiously awaiting the first Wednesday in May for the first Sow-A-Long of May... TWO more days.

Until then, let me share a picture from the weekend we spent with the darling grandson.  He calls me Nana and I've gotta say it's the most beautiful sound to hear that little boy calling, "Nana, Nana, Nana", even at the butt-crack-of-dawn.

Note that Max's head is about 4 times the size of Ryan's foot. :-)

Have a great Monday!
Love to you all,

Thursday, April 26, 2012

I've been TABBED!!!

Guess who is now tabbed??? ME!!
Thank you Janet (roguequilter) for walking me through the process necessary to add a tab to my blog and for helping me put the links for each post.  You will now be able to go back and see the instructions for all the Sow-A-Long blog posts.  I've even added the picture which has all the blocks, save for the latest Birds in the Air.  THANKS JANET!! Linky-thing is still coming one of these days.

Oh, and I was a naughty girl...went onto ebay last week, still playing around looking for another Bernina and just happened over to the antique quilt blocks and bought absolutely gorgeous album blocks in red/white.

My plan is to put them on point with plain muslin. Aren't they fabulous?? Of course I needed another project, right??

Hope everyone is having a great week! I'll be quiet this weekend: we are babysitting! WOOHOO!!

Love to you all,

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Wednesday bonus for Sow-A-Long

I am guessing that everyone is caught up on their blocks and just chomping at the sewing machine waiting for a bonus block to tide you over until the next 3 blocks come out on May 2nd.

Here you go!!

Birds in the Air

Background:  Cut (2) 4" squares, cut once on the diagonal

Dark:  Cut (6) 2" squares, cut once on the diagonal

Background:  Cut (6) 2" squares, making 12 hsts, 1" finished
Dark:   cut (6) 2" squares, making 12 hsts, 1" finished

Hope you are having a great week!

Love to you all,

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Wisteria in bloom and LABELS

Aside from being a great quilter, my friend Claire is a fabulous gardener. She and her husband are awesome! They have a beautiful yard which they are constantly working on.  They planted some beautiful wisteria vines many years ago and they are blooming now.  Here are what some of her plants look like:

On another note, I have been stumped trying to figure out how to make it easier for everyone to find prior posts with Sow-A-Long instructions.  I am blog-challenged!  My dear friend Lori suggested that I do labels to make it easier for everyone. SOOOO, I have added labels to all the blog posts that have instructions for the blocks I've posted thus far. They are all under "SOW-A-LONG".

Hope everyone had a great weekend and that the week is looking good for you.  Guess who we get over next weekend??? Darling Grandson Ryan!!! YEAH!!!

Love to you all,
ps: Bonus Block coming on Wednesday. Keep checking back!!!

Friday, April 20, 2012

The magic number is ---- 24

There have been a number of questions about how many blocks we have done thus far.  I have been posting since Feb. 1st, 6 blocks a month (=18).  I have thrown in some bonus blocks.  The total number of blocks that I have made (excluding duplicates of the same block in different color ways) is 24!!

Here are mine on the design wall. This is the first time I've taken them out of the baggie they're living in. It's good to do that because I can see which colors I need to add and also that we need MORE baskets!!! Oh and STARS!!! :-)

I'm going to try to figure out how to add a tab at the top with all the directions kept in one place. Bonnie, where are you when I need you?? VBG
And I still plan to do a linky thing (my autocorrect always types in KINKY...and NO, we are not doing the kinky thing here!)

Hope everyone has a great weekend.  We are going to see the darling boy tomorrow in San Francisco, where the weather is supposed to be glorious!

Love to you all,
Randy, Head Sower

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Another healthy breakfast

I picked up Ryan yesterday and we went to play in the park. I always take him to the same place for breakfast where he eats only two things, from the Basic B Food groups: bacon and bananas!!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

If it's the third Wednesday in April, it must be SOW A LONG day

Boy, those two weeks sure went fast! Hope everyone is all caught up, even with the bonus blocks!

Today we have three new blocks AND a bonus block, just because...

Dutchman's Puzzle

Cut background   (4) 2-1/2" squares (for flying geese, need 4)
cut medium        (1) 4-1/4" square
Please see previous instructions for making flying geese. You need (4) which will finish at 1-1/2 x 3".(2 x 3-1/2" unfinished!) 

Cut background  (4) 2-1/2" square (for flying geese, need 4)
cut dark            (1) 4-1/4" square

You will need (4) of these flying geese. Total is (8) flying geese.

Sawtooth Star

Cut background  (4) 2" squares

Cut background  (1) 4-1/4" square (for 4 flying geese)
cut dark            (4) 2-1/2" square (2 x 3-1/2" unfinished)

Cut dark          (1) 2-5/8" square (center)
Cut medium     (2) 2-1/2" square, cut once on the diagonal. You are making a square in a square.  Square up to 3-1/2" unfinished.

Hooker's Hat Patch**

Cut background  (3)- 2-1/2" squares (for corners and center)

Cut background  (3) - 3" squares (for 6 hsts, finishing at 2")
cut  dark           (3) - 3" squares (for 6 hsts, finishing at 2")
NOTE:  I do my hsts extra large allowing for fudge room; I cut them down to the size 2-1/2" unfinished. You can also use the easy angle, cutting strips 2-1/2".

**from Carol Hopkins' Civil War Legacies

BONUS BLOCK  (just because!!)

Cut  4 different squares 4-1/4"; then cut diagonally twice to make (4) quarter square triangles, 3-1/2" unfinished.

That's IT!! Not so bad!
Please let me know how you're doing!!!!

Love to you all,
Randy, ready to tackle the latest JTForever blocks!! vbg

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Are you ready for Wednesday April 18th

Not trying to be a tease or anything, but tomorrow is the third Wednesday of April and that means it's SOW A LONG day.

Be ready!!!

Love to you all,

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Weekend trip

We had to go to Minneapolis for a funeral unfortunately. But ever watchful for something to see, we found the James Hill house, an 1870 mansion with 36,000 sq feet and 13 bathrooms!!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Just Takes forever, block 28

I'm participating in the Just Take 2 (NOT!!) quiltalong using red/whites and have really been enjoying it. It's a job to keep up with the assignments and some of the blocks are really challenging.  The latest blocks included a large applique.  I didn't think I could easily copy their design and didn't think it was necessary that mine match their pattern anyway. (what can I say? that's typical ME). So I went through my pattern books and found something in one of the Baltimore Album books---it's larger than they suggested but I'll figure it out. I appliqued it down by hand. Not making any others, I'll tell ya.

I'm kind of tempted to write my name in the center, as I've seen that done in the antique blocks.  I'm happy with it. Definitely not perfect but good enough (one of my favorite concepts!).

How are your sow-a-long blocks coming?  I'm busy writing patterns and sewing blocks so get to work!!! More is on the way!!

Love to you all,

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Bonus Block Thursday!

Well I know you've all been patiently waiting for today's Bonus Block. The day kind of got away from me and I did go for a 4 mile very muddy hike so that's part of why it's late.

Anyway, today we are making a Milky Way* block:

Cut background:  (2) - 3" squares (for 4 hsts, fin 2")
      dark            (2) - 3" squares (for 4 hsts, fin 2")

Cut background:  (1) - 2-1/2" square

Cut background: (1)- 1-1/2" x 12-1/2" strip
     medium:      (1)- 1-1/2" x 12-1/2" strip, making (4) 4-patches, fin 2"

*from Sylvia's Bridal Sampler

Easy! Fun! Get to it!!

Remember, next Wednesday the 18th is the second Wednesday of April and there will be 3 more Sow-A-Long blocks! So BE READY!!!

I'm going to do a linky-thing, finally.  I'm thinking we can plan to have the linky party on April 25th...I'll keep you posted.

Hope everyone is having a great week.

Love to you all,
Randy, Head Sower

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

What have I been doing???

Do you ever find yourself completely overwhelmed with all the fabics, books and patterns to the extent that you become immobilized? That happens to me a LOT, I'm reluctant to admit.

This week I found myself sitting in my newly cleaned up sewing room and couldn't decide what to work on.  I had been reading a blog by Cheri with instructions to make a little doll-type quilt and it seemed to be exactly what I needed.  It didn't take very long nor did it use up much fabric but I had fun.

AND tomorrow will be another BONUS block for you, so keep watching!!!

What are you working on? I know you have already finished your sow-a-long blocks from April 4th and have to wait until the 18th for the next 3...

Oh, how could I forget? We spent the weekend with our darling grandson Ryan and he was helping my daughter make brownies. Is there anything as adorable as licking the beater??

Hope you have a great Wednesday.
Love to you all,

Thursday, April 5, 2012

My very talented friend Claire

I have been good friends with Claire for over 20 years.  She's the creative one of our two-some.  She's got the best laugh you'll ever hear and she's a great sport about everything.  Once in a while we are able to get together for some sewing time, which we did this week.  She shared a couple of medallion tops she's made, one of which is kind of a theme for her (Paris!!).

These are her own designs and you can see how talented she is. I can follow a pattern just fine... Thinking of a pattern out of my own head? not so much!! vbg

Do you see that beautiful smiling face peeking out over the Paris one? See what I mean about that smile?

Claire's Medallion pattern
She has her own blog:

Hope everyone has had a great week and you're sowing along just fine with our blocks!!!  I'm off to get my darling grandson and spend the night and have breakfast at our favorite place in the morning!! WOOHOO... Doesn't get much better than that!

Love to you all,

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

What a view!!

On my way to pick up Ryan, I took a different route and came upon this amazing view!!

First Wednesday in April - next sow-a-long installment

Good morning fellow sowers! I hope your project is coming along and that you are enjoying all the little blocks we're making.  I sure am.

Today, we are doing 3 new cute little blocks. One of them requires flying geese and I know everyone has their own methods. I'm giving cutting instructions for the way that I did them. You can use any method you prefer. Warning:  they aren't very big!! :-)  All blocks finish at 6"!!

Friendship Star

Background:     cut (4) 2-1/2" squares
                      cut (2) 3" squares for hsts, fin. at 2"
Dark:              cut (2) 3" squares for hsts, fin. at 2"
                      cut (1) 2-1/2" square

Steps to the Altar

Background:   cut (2) 3" squares, for 4 hsts, fin. 2"
Medium:        cut (2) 3" squares, for 4 hsts, fin 2"

Background:   cut (1) 3" square, for 2 hsts, fin 2"
Dark:            cut (1) 3" square, for 2 hsts, fin 2"

Background:   cut (1) 1-1/2" x 12" strip for 4-patch, fin 2" (extra included)
Dark:            cut (1) 1-1/2" x 12" strip for 4-patch, fin. 2"

Cups and Saucers:

Background:   cut (2) 3" squares for 4 hsts, fin 2"
Dark:            cut (2) 3" squares for 4 hsts, fin 2"

Background:  cut (1) 2-1/2" square (for center)

Background:  cut (2) 3-1/4" squares for flying geese
Dark:           cut (8) 2" squares for flying geese.

The method I used for flying geese (which are 1" x 2" fin) was to put 2 small dark squares on opposite corners of light square (right sides together), with a diagonal line drawn across; Sew on both sides of line.

I then cut down the center line, pressed towards the little guys and put another small dark square down the middle, drew a line and sewed on both sides of that diagonal line again.

Cut down the diagonal line, press towards the little guys and then square it up so that it's 1-1/2 x 2-1/2 unf (1 x 2 fin... I told you they were small!).

Now that you've mastered how to make flying geese, be on the lookout for more... as in STARS with flying geese!

Have a great week.

Love to you all,
Randy, Master Sower

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Ebay acquisition - keep me away

I've been watching ebay recently to try to find a new (well, actually a used one) Bernina for Bonnie and happened to look at antique quilt tops.  OOPS.  I found one I couldn't live without.  Isn't this adorable??

I'm not sure why it looks kind of crooked, but it's really not. Bad photo I think.

Anyway, don't you love pinwheel blocks? They're so simple but have so much movement.  I need to make a quilt for Ryan's soon-to-be-preschool auction and was thinking of red/white/blue.  Maybe pinwheels would be a good idea.

Any suggestions?? I don't have too much time to do it so it can't be too complex.  I'd love to hear your ideas.

Hope everyone has a great Sunday.
Love to you all,