Raccoons got into the Fireworks = quilt love

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Dusting off my keyboard, back with some yummy quilts!

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This pattern is Fireworks by Thimble Blossoms.

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The fabric is from the Acacia collection by Tula Pink.

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The solid is Kona cotton Pepper.

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The embroidery design is from Urban Threads, my favorite online source for machine embroidery.

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The quilt back is Tula Pink wide back Free Fall.

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I embroidered my quilt label in a subtle color – quite a change from my usual outspoken color choices!

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My new favorite throw was quilted by Lea Ingram here on Kauai.

 

Hawaiian quilt love ❤️

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Let the celebration begin, the Hawaiian quilt is complete and on the bed!

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Picture, if you will, my awkward self dancing an Irish jig.  Strike that.  An awkward hula.

Here I am looking Hawaiian, hula performance October 2014
Here I am looking Hawaiian, hula performance October 2014

I am truly and utterly excited to debut my Hawaiian quilt.

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So if you are new to my party, each quilt block is made in a different batik fabric. The embroidery designs are by Anita Goodesign, from their Hawaiian Quilt collection.  Each block is comprised of four identical machine embroidered sections.  Each section took about three hours or so to make.  I’m tired thinking about it.

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A terrific embroidery design by Urban Threads ( urbanthreads.com ) was the basis for my quilt label.  I added text to document all the important information about my quilt.  Like the fact that it took me forever.

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Did I mention that my bed is a king size?  I started the blocks and refused to measure my bed to see how many I needed.  When I had finished 20 blocks, I laid them on the bed to see how close I might actually be from a quilt.  That was when I decided to use plain white borders.  But the borders had to be special, to be quilted so they would match the pizzaz of the quilt itself.

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This is when you call in the big guns.  Natalia Bonner, author and quilter extraordinaire, did a great job on this quilt.  I said I like bubbles, and feathers, and lines…oh my!  Check out more of Natalia’s amazing work on her blog Piece N Quilt ( pieceandquilt.com )

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One dilemma of a king size quilt is how to wrangle it to sew on the binding.   Let’s just say that it took a long time and some arm strength to get the binding on this puppy.  I draped it across my cutting table AND a sofa, repositioning it after every few feet.

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It was a trial by fire for my new machine, a Pfaff Quilt Expression 4.2.  I chose it mainly for the built-in walking foot.  Are you ready, foot?  Start walking!  (Short break while I dance the pony and sing “These boots are made for walkin!”)

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I’m elbow deep into another embroidered quilt, this one for Christmas.  Hey, it’s only November 2nd…

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Halloween is coming, time to decorate the bathroom!

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Our hands will be the first at our house to celebrate Halloween this year.

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I happened upon some orange hand towels in a store last week.  They had black also, so you know they called out to me.  “Come,” they said, “embroider us!”  So I did.  I embroidered them good.

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I think they got ahold of our little fatty precious kitty as a model for this one.  Love me some black kitties.

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Frankenstein and his lovely Bride got the orange makeover.  I think it suits them.

I have so many projects that I am working on, I can’t quite explain how I got sidetracked by Halloween hand towels.  Maybe it’s because one of the projects is locating a gift that I made and then lost in my sewing room. Or more likely, because I need to clean up my sewing room.

Nah, I just needed Halloween hand towels.  That’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it.

A weekend cornucopia: little boy gifts, a quilt top finish, and we’re off to the races on the Farmer’s Wife quilt!

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I got a birth announcement this week.  I love it, because it gives me a good excuse to hit up my sewing room and come up with something new and different.  It’s been a couple of weeks since I’ve embroidered…

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These adorable trucks are in a set by Anita Goodesign, Baby Construction.  Along with cute applique designs, they have these made-in-the-hoop softies.  Ooohhh, I can give the baby his first trucks!

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I took some photos in my sewing room.  Not good enough.  I knew they needed to be photographed at a work site.  Now that’s more like it.

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The new little tot has two older brothers, so I put his name on his toys.  These were fun to make and turned out so cute.  Anita Goodesign does a great job on these in-the-hoop projects.

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Big brothers like to get gifts, too.  I decided to stick with the construction theme and make pillow cases for the two older boys.  I was at my local shop on Friday woking on the Million Pillowcase Challenge, so pillow cases were on my mind.  And I figured that everybody like to have their name on things.  Especially with a house full of brothers.

If you are hearing a grinding noise now, not to worry.  It’s just the sound of me switching gears.

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I have finished my Downton Abbey Christmas quilt top!  It looks very elegant, if I do say so myself.  I’ll figure out the backing, then off to the quilter.  And anytime I mention Downton Abbey, I have to include a picture of me at Downton.

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More grinding of gears here.

The Farmer’s Wife 1930’s Sampler Quilt sew-along has begun!  We got a preview of the first block, and here’s mine.

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Loving the brights.  Mine will have quite the variety of colors.  Is anyone else riding along for this adventure?

The Irish festival in my sewing room

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I decided to host an Irish festival in my sewing room.  Ireland is part of the British Isles after all, so I am being true to my ongoing Anglophile tendencies.  I didn’t really invite anyone, but I’m okay with my one-person celebration.

My new Irish quilt took a turn for the smaller.  I needed to come up with a thank you gift for they-who-shall-not-be-named.  So I diverted some quilt blocks into a table runner.

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Who doesn’t love a great little tree of life?  I used three colors of gold thread to add depth.  The trick was using green and gold and not having this look like a Packers tribute.  (Boo, Packers!)

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The Eternal Life block has the same elements of a claddagh ring – crown for loyalty, hands for friendship, heart for love.  The designs are new this month from Anita Goodesign.

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There’s a little bit of the backing shown here.  This green swirly batik is one of my favorites.

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I’ve got to figure out a better way to photograph a table runner.  I tried getting all artsy-fartsy and doing a perspective shot, but you’ll notice it’s not in here.

This one is the money shot anyway.  My little fatty fatty two-by-four Tippy is modeling his favorite use for a table runner.

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Tippy – one.  Artsy-fartsy photographs – zero.  Game, set, match.

Happy 4th of July! (Plus some random musings…)

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Miss Dorito would like to wish everyone a very safe and happy 4th of July.  She is rockin’ her new patriotic dress.  She has a little bit of room, so she can grow into it.  And no, I did not make it.  I am trying desperately to maintain some dignity by not spending all my time drafting patterns for chihuahua clothing.

This little darling is sucking up a lot of my time, as any baby will do.  She is a bundle of energy, funny and sweet.  At 3 months, she weighed in at one ounce under two pounds.

Good news from the sewing room – I have new LED lighting. Talk about opening up a world of opportunity!  Now I can actually work after sunset.

"I never sleep on planes" eye mask.  Anita Goodesign embroidery.  Gray poly satin fabric, black lace elastic.
“I never sleep on planes” eye mask. Anita Goodesign embroidery. Gray poly satin fabric, black lace elastic.

Remember the eye mask I made for our European trip?  On our return flight from Shannon to JFK I sat next to two energetic young Irish women.  They were on their way to San Diego to work for the summer.  It was their first time out of Ireland, the first  plane ride for one of them.  Louise and Clodagh made the most of their flight time, partaking of the free (on international flights) beverages and flirting with the other passengers.  When the flight attendants started passing out eye masks for those who wanted to sleep, I knew mine had ascended to a higher purpose.  I hope Clodagh and Louise have fun showing off their new fashion accessory.