Sep 24, 2010

New Home Announcement!

Don't forget to come by my new blog address and sign up to follow!  You will be automatically entered to win a $50 gift certificate to your favorite online fabric shop.  What every quilter fabric!

Sep 23, 2010

Giveaway to Celebrate Moving Day!

My blog is moving to  To celebrate the move, I am giving away a $50 gift certificate to your favorite online fabric shop!  Visit my new blog and register as a Follower before October 3rd and you are entered in the drawing.  On October 3rd I will use the Google Random Number Generator to pick a winner.  So help me celebrate my move and....well, get what every quilter wants.  Free fabric!

Sep 15, 2010

My New Machine

Look what has come to live in my studio!

A 1955 Singer Featherweight!

I have been lurking on Craigslist and Ebay for months watching for one of these machines that was in good shape and reasonably priced.  I found one, bid and won!  Woohoo.....until the machine arrived.  The seller on Ebay said it "sewed beautifully."  I took it out of its box and threaded it, put in a bobbin and tried to sew.....nothing.  The bobbin make a sickening rubbing sound and I couldn't bring the thread from the bobbin to the face plate.  Uh-oh. 

I took her down to my local sewing machine shop and here is where I give a shout out to Marty at The Sewing Machine Shop in Walnut Creek, California.  He took the machine apart and completely serviced the machine.  He found a badly compressed mass of thread that had collected behind the bobbin casing that made it impossible for the bobbin to work correctly.  He cleaned her up, adjusted the bobbin, adjusted the tension, checked the belt, installed a new bulb and.....she is as good as new (for some additional $$$).

This little machine just purrs along.  Very quiet and a super straight stitch.  I can see why these machines are so popular.  She is 15 inches long, 9 1/2 inches tall and weighs 11 pounds.  Tiny, but amazing!  She came with 15 different attachments.  I spent all afternoon researching online what these attachments do...because they didn't come with any instructions.  I have one foot that you can feed a strip of fabric into the foot and it will create a bias tape AND simultaneously sew it onto another fabric.  I need to do some experimenting.

If you have one of these machines and have some of these amazing attachments, please comment here about what you have learned and let's share with other Featherweight owners.

Sep 12, 2010

Bee Blocks for Alex

I had a nice quiet Sunday afternoon to myself to sew.  I just recevied round robin bee blocks from Alex of Canberra, Australia and decided to work on that project because I love the block she chose.  It is a simple paper pieced kaleidoscope block.  It is easy to sew but spectacular when grouped together.  It forms a secondary pattern that looks circular, much like Storm at Sea.  I was having such a good time, I made two of them for her...just couldn't help myself.  Here's the first:
and here is the second:

and here are the bee blocks that have been made for her so far:

These blocks still have quite a journey ahead of them and by the time they make their way back to Alex she should have lots of beautiful blocks for her quilt!

Sep 10, 2010

A Bee Block for Victoria

In my round robin quilting bee, Victoria from London, England requested this framed block.  She asked for an appliqued center, if we chose to do one for her...

I appliqued a sewing machine and tiny quilt in the center to symbolize the quilting bee that has brought this group together as friends.  Each piece of fabric in the frame is a fabric that I have used in other blocks for this bee, giving Victoria's quilt a connection to all the other quilts.  Her quilt is growing...and on its way to Southern California for its next stop.
It's nice to have this block finished because there were more blocks in the mailbox when I got home this afternoon!

Sep 7, 2010

Rose of Sharon Blocks!

Sharon Pederson's Rose of Sharon Block Book has been released by Martingale Press.  Two of my blocks are featured in the book.  This book was the result of a contest sponsored by Electric Quilt last year. 

There are some really amazing blocks in this book and I am so humbled to be among them!  Sharon was sweet enough to send me some autographed book plates for some of my quilter friends...only three and half months until Christmas!

Aug 24, 2010

Christmas in August

Today I received a package from my secret partner in the Modern Swap, Kerry in Exeter, England.  The swap involved sending 6 fat quarters of fabric, a decorative item for our partner's sewing room, and a handmade gift.  Kerry is a very creative quilter and sent me some adorable gifts.

She made me this darling pin cushion caddy which will be perfect on my cutting table ~ a splendid place to park my rotary cutters.  And look at this Good King Wenceslas ornament she made.

There are some remarkable details on this little ornament!

She also sent along this fabulous handmade gift:

Quilted coasters!  Aren't these just too darn cute?
She also sent along fabrics from my very favorite designers:

Isn't that mini-bunting cute?  There is a booklet on quilts from the Victoria and Albert Museum collection, as well as a fat quarter of a limited edition print from the collection.  It's completed with postcard photos of Exeter, where she lives.

Thanks, Kerry, for your lovely, generous gifts!  I will certainly enjoy using each and every one of them.  I was certainly lucky to have been assigned such a wonderful secret swap partner.