Monday, September 30, 2013

Simply Modern Christmas Give-Away Winner

The last of the roses usher out summer...
...but, October, and cooler fall weather, enters right behind!
The winner of the Simply Modern Christmas book giveaway is Jenn. Congratulations!
I finally got us a tree skirt made last year-my own design so that took forever! This looks like s fun book!
Mr. Lollyquiltz did the random choosing by selecting comment #42 because we recently watched the excellent movie about baseball player, Jackie Robinson who was, of course, #42. If you haven't seen it yet, here's the trailer:
Thank you for all your fun entries for this give-away. One thing I learned: there are certainly quite a few To Do lists out there with 'tree skirt' as an entry!

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Sunday Morning

Jesus replied, "What is impossible with men
is possible with God."
Luke 18:27

Friday, September 27, 2013

Simply Modern Christmas Book Review and Give-Away

Today, I have the pleasure of introducing you to a beautiful new quilting book written by my blogging friend, Hyacinth Quilts Designs author, Cindy Lammon. If you are wanting to make something with a modern traditional vibe for a fresh Christmas look, then this is the quilt book for you!
 As I have mentioned before, a new Christmas tree skirt has been on my "want list" for a few years now. Cindy's cute design is just what I had in mind and I shamelessly copied her color scheme with the exception of using an Aneela Hoye print instead of solid white.
It looks difficult, doesn't it? But, clever piecing instructions make for a simple and quick project. The sewing and quilting can all easily be completed in a weekend!
 After piecing and quilting, I used a small dessert plate as a pattern to cut out the center circle of the quilt.
 After removing the basting stitches from one seam, I was instructed to cut the batting and backing to make the skirt opening.
 Red Sherbet Pipps binding will look really cute... once I get it sewn on, of course!
 I cannot overstate how well written the instructions are for these projects. Here's a taste of the lovely visual guides that are included for each pattern. There was never a question in my mind about what to do next.
I can hardly wait to see my new tree skirt circling a Christmas tree in December! I promise to show you the complete look once I get the binding attached.
 Wondering about the other 13 projects in the book? Here are a few that I have ear-marked...Hanging Around....
 and this cutie: Spruced Up... Well, seriously, they are all wonderful!
 Cindy and Martingale Publishing are offering a digital version of Simply Modern Christmas to one of my blog readers. It could be you!
For a chance to win,  leave a comment telling me about your Christmas tree skirt...or, lack of. Be sure that you have a valid e-mail address connected to your comment. I'll pick a winner at random on Monday afternoon.

+This give-away is now closed.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Really Random Thursday--Christmas in September

I can hardly believe that I am actually doing Christmas sewing ahead of schedule! That's not my usual MO, for sure. A new book and pretty fabrics have enticed me to make a new Christmas tree skirt.
 Oh, it has been such fun to make. And cleverly simple, as well!
 It's one of those time when you say to yourself, "Oh, that's how she did that!". Love that.
 To keep me company and to "kill two birds with one stone", as my mother would say, I've been listening to an audio book checked out from my local library. So good!
 Sometimes when I sew, I have to take breaks for company...
...or to see what the mailman has brought me.
And sometimes, I just think about my good friends and the fun we have together. (Yes, it usually involves eating...another favorite thing of mine!)
 Check in tomorrow for a view of my finished project (sort of), a book review and a chance to win a copy of the book. 

 I'm linking up with Live a Colorful Life for Really Random Thursday.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Sunday Morning

"But let all who take refuge in You rejoice;
let them ever sing for joy,
and spread your protection over them,
that those who love your name
may exult in You.
For you bless the righteous, O Lord;
You cover him with favor as with a shield."
Psalm 5:11,12

Friday, September 20, 2013

Friday Finish: Wristlet Key Fobs

Every year, the empty nest club that I belong to has a big birthday party to celebrate another year of meeting together. We call ourselves "The Pink Flamingo Club" and this week we marked twelve years of twice a month meetings. 
 Our tradition is to give each other Bird-day gifts (we're flamingos...get it?!) and often  I make a little something for each of my pink friends. 
Alex Ledgerwood (Teaginny Designs) has a free tutorial for making these cute key fobs. I had all of the materials on hand except for the D-rings, which I purchased with coupons at the JoAnn store.
They sewed up pretty quickly and I think will come in handy for carrying your car key on your wrist when your hands are full. 
But the handiest thing will be how easy they will be to find in the depths of a purse!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Work In Progress: A House and a Holiday Project

Every Tuesday, for the last few weeks, my sewing soul-mate and I have been working on something very, very special.
We set up our machines on Vicki's breakfast table...
and a little ironing board on her kitchen counter. Then, the cuteness begins!
Have you seen this darling Card Table Playhouse pattern, designed by my friend Shea Henderson? We are having a ball building a couple of sweet little houses for our grandchildren to play in when they come for a visit. 
This is no quick project and we are kind of glad that we are tackling it together. Our first few get-togethers were spent cutting and ironing on lots of Heat 'n Bond and Peltex.  But, things are moving along to the good stuff now!
 The pattern instructions are clear and concise and our efforts are slowly, but surely,  starting to look like a house! Even when I realized that I had purchased the wrong Peltex product for the windows and we tried to adhere it with a glue stick, we could hardly contain our excitement at all the cuteness! Hopefully, in a couple of weeks, the houses will be ready for the new owners to move into!

Over the weekend, I gathered up some fresh and modern, Christmas colored fabrics...
and cut out a new Christmas tree skirt. The pattern is one of the gorgeous projects in Cindy Lammon's new book, Simply Modern Christmas, just out. 
A reveal and book review, plus a give-away, coming soon!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Sunday Morning

"Whatever you do,
work at it with all your heart,
as working for the Lord,
not men"
Colossians 3:23

Friday, September 13, 2013

Friday Finish--Blueberries Table Runner

For at least twenty years, I have been collecting blue and white dishes. Some are antiques, but most have been purchased from T.J. Maxx or Marshall's (two of my favorite places to shop) as I have run across them over the years.
 There are very few repeats and if I break a dish it's no big deal as there is always another to take it's place. We eat off of them almost every day and I still am not bored!
 So, ten years ago, I decided to make a blue and white table runner to go with the dishes. Somewhere along the line, after all of the hexagons were made, I lost interest for whatever reason and put the project in the UFO closet where it has stayed until recently.
 How foolish of me to have procrastinated! I am just loving the finished table runner and don't feel like it is too dated even after having been laid aside for a decade! Hexies are really "in" right now, right.
 The pattern is one by my friend, Robin Askins, and was created for a local quilt shop, Harper's Fabrics, to use with their "strip club" program. Being a very generous 90 inches long, it will fit my table even with several leaves put in. 
 At first I was going to use some stash fabric for the back of the runner but changed my mind. I decided on a bright orange chevron fabric on sale at JoAnn to make a reversible runner that might be fun for cooler fall weather. The binding is by Denyse Schmidt and also found at JoAnn. I chose a simple quilt-in-the-ditch machine quilting with a medium grey thread and white in the bobbin. I think that my backing and binding add a bit of a modern vibe to the older project!
 As I was walking back to the house after photographing the table runner, I spied my distorted image in the back of hubby's black car....and couldn't resist one more photo! Hi!!
 What project have you been putting off? Maybe you will fall in love with it all over again! 
(This Spode bowl is one of my favorites.)
Have a wonderful weekend. Thanks for stopping by Lollyquiltz!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Ode to UFO's

 My sewing machine has been humming...
 The UFO's have been out sunning...
 On their way to becoming finishes.... Stunning!
And I am so... poetic  pathetic.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Sunday Morning

"The Lord will fight for you;
you need only to be still."
Exodus 14:14

Friday, September 6, 2013

Final Farmer's Wife Friday

Today marks the final post featuring my marathon project called, The Farmer's Wife Sampler Quilt! I'm so in love with this quilt and happier with the final product than I've probably ever been with any quilt that I've made in the 30+ years that I've been quilting.
Cindy Weins (Live a Colorful Life) and I began making the Farmer's Wife blocks together and featuring them on our blogs almost every Friday beginning in June 2011. If you missed it, you  can follow along with our comments on the various blocks as well as the letters that accompany each in the book beginning here.
I am fairly certain that without my commitment to Cindy and my blog followers, this quilt would have joined many others in my UFO pile within a few short months. The accountabilility served as a sure motivation over the year that it took to piece all 111 six- inch blocks.
In the front of my book, by Laurie Aaron Hird, I have written, "Last block finished: July 2012". Early on, I decided to use a different setting for my quilt than the one suggested in the book. I'd seen another Farmer's Wife quilt that used a more modern setting that seemed to give the blocks more "breathing room". Finding it was an instant "BINGO" for me!
I also decided that with all of the time I'd spent on these little blocks (many have, what seemed like, 1000 tiny pieces!) I wanted the quilting to be extra-special...something that my utilitarian style couldn't give me. I found a talented machine quilter named, Lynne Harbour, who did a fabulous job! It took some waiting and some "frog stitching" to get it just right, but in the end the result was worth the wait!
From the back, the quilting on the white sateen gives the look of a whole cloth quilt and makes my quilt almost reversible if you ignore the label. (I've had the scripture fabric for several years and with the joy that I felt at finishing this project, it seemed the perfect way to sign the quilt! I added my name,city and dates to the script piece.)
Quite a few of the small blocks became my favored ones while working on this quilt. I have a list of blocks that I hope to enlarge and, perhaps, make again as more modern versions and then stitch more quilts featuring them.
The whimsical effect of using colorful scraps and white sashing make me smile almost every time I look at the Farmer's Wife. I also think of the happy result of meeting Cindy  in person shortly before we finished the piecing. We had so much fun working on this project together! 
Photographing the quilt on the antique hay wagon at the country home of my good friend, Vicki, made for a happy conclusion. (Vicki's daughter-in-law and grandson were good sports to help with the quilt holding!)
Cindy is working on getting her quilt finished up before long and I'll be sure to point you in her direction when it's ready to shine! (Right, Cindy!?)
A big THANK YOU to all who have offered me encouragement over the last two will never know how much it helped to make this a FINISH!