Wednesday, October 31, 2012

What's Up?

Fun stuff, that's what!!!  
                   Mysteries and NewFO's and Giveaways... 


***  Looking for my Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks Vol 6 GIVEAWAY?  Click HERE! ***

First of all, Bonnie Hunter's new 2012 Mystery starts today!!!

Fabric requirements for Easy Street are published on Bonnie's blog today and I've printed out my copy.  Have you?  How many of you are Bonnie fans?  Yep, me too!  I haven't yet decided whether I'll join the craziness of doing it on the Mystery schedule, but I will definitely save the instructions.  The colors in this year's mystery are absolutely YUMMY!!!  They tempt me, yes they do!!!

I love her mysteries, but I'm having a hard time justifying the start of another project right now, you know what I mean?  Although, she DOES promise that this quilt will be less intensive than the last couple were.  That's good to know, right?  Tempted.......

Bonnie is coming to our Music City guild in April 2013, so our program for November will be all about her and her quilts to give everyone a chance to learn to love her like we do :*)  I'm heading up the program, so not a lot of sewing has gone on in my house this week.  I did manage to get some prep work done on my current handwork project The Blue Collection and the tracing done for a little Christmas table topper, Partridge in a Pear Tree...

Won't this make a gorgeous bowl???  YUM!!!  This is the bowl for those infamous PEACHES!!!
Doesn't look like much yet, does it?  Hehehe.....

And don't forget that today is the day to link up with Barbara at Cat Patches for her 2012 NewFO Challenge party!


I started several projects in October.  First was the Partridge in a Pear Tree that you see in it's infant stages above.  I also joined up with Sew Kind of Wonderful's Curve It Up QAL and made my first block for that, a curved up Churndash .....

I want to thank you all for responding to my question of whether you work on all one section of a quilt at a time or put blocks together as you go.  It seems a lot of you work the same way I do - I was surprised since most of my sew buddies are in the "one section at a time" camp.  It's nice to find out that so many of you like to see your blocks come to life as you go, just like me :*)

And since I always like to leave you wanting more..... 

Lookie what turned up in my mailbox the other day!  

Two copies of the newest Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks - Collector's edition Vol 6!!!  

I was a block tester for this issue and had great fun with the blocks that came my way!  It was fun seeing the blocks in the published magazine too, I almost felt maternal toward them :*)

Since I was gifted with 2 of them, I think it's time for a GIVEAWAY here very soon!  We've got lots to celebrate, you know.....  I just realized the other day that I'm very near 300 followers - woohoo!!!  And I'm right on the verge of 40,000 post views - I never dreamed I'd reach even close to that when I started A Quilt and A Prayer last December.  And last, but not least, it will be my birthday this weekend!  So.... how about I give YOU a gift on my birthday?  Come back to visit this Saturday and we'll see if I can add any more goodies to this giveaway, what do you say?  Fun, right?!?

And speaking of FUN, I'm also linking this post up with Kathy's Slow Sunday Quilting and Angie's Applique Thursday :*D

Okay, I'm off and running - lots to accomplish today.  

I'm sending prayers out for all those in Sandy's wake. My heart breaks to think of the suffering she has caused.   Please join me in prayer for them!

Hugs & Blessings!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Fun Stuff on the Design Wall

I have been working on two really fun projects this week....

Hawaii Sunset....

Three blocks completed!  And bits and pieces of several more in the works.  I know a lot of people will make all the flying geese first, then all the nine-patch centers, etc.  You know who you are!  *wink!*  And these people get a lot more done than I do, and a lot faster too.

But I just can't work that way.  I get really, really bored working on the same type pieces one after the other by the hundreds!  I have to get that quick little burst of gratification by seeing a completed block! =^..^=  Are any of you like me in this?  I work on flying geese for a while, then I work on nine-patches, then I put together blocks - yep, it makes me happy :*D

This quilt has quite a way to go yet, so you'll be seeing it again!

I also got busy with the first block of the Curve It Up QAL.
For each block, Jenny and Helen will take a traditional quilt block and "Curve it Up" using this ruler.

This is the Quick Curve Ruler I bought from Jenny over at Sew Kind of Wonderful about 6 months ago.  It never left the package.  But when she announced her Quilt Along I knew it was time to grab it and get sewing.  These are the fabrics I chose to use, with a nice yummy Kona Cream for the background.

The instructions are given on the blog and also as a PDF file, so I set up my iPad next to my sewing machine and followed the directions easily from there.

As you can see from the screen, the first block is a curved-up Churndash.  

I have to admit I was pretty nervous starting this block, because curves can be intimidating enough all on their own, without any fancy rulers to complicate things further - you know what I mean?  Yep, I thought you did!  And I have to say, this ruler could be confusing too, except for one thing - Jenny gives excellent instructions!   You know exactly where to place the ruler for the correct cut....

I also used my Curvemaster presser foot to sew the curves, which worked like a charm!

Jenny adds in enough room in her measurements so that you don't have to be perfect in sewing your curves because you trim down the unit to make it perfect!

Here are all four of my happy little curved units...

Then I added some half-square triangles which made this cute little "bridge" shape :*)

Putting it all together with the center section, I got this lovely block!

It's a doozie of a block -  16 inches finished!  

I was very happy with how this block came together!!!   If you want to join along with us, it's not too late.  Just click HERE for the instructions for the first block!

Now, I'm looking forward to the next block =^..^=

So what's on your Design Wall?  Be sure to show us by linking up to Design Wall Monday at -
Patchwork Times
Also linking up with:

Fresh Poppy Design
WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced
Hugs & Blessings!

Stash Enhancement Report - 10-28-12

Pumpkin Pete is here to give the Stash Enhancement Report today ....

Isn't he cute?!?   

I first met Pumpkin Pete at our Guild Association's Assembly Day.  He was just a printed panel on a vendor's table, looking all cute and hopeful that someone would pick him up and put a few stitches in him so he could be a Real Pumpkin.  My friend Lynn saw him first and picked him up right away, paying big bucks for him just 'cause he was so cute!  When I looked for another one, I was very disappointed to find that he was the last one :-(

Not one to be deterred from my new crush, I got on the Internet when I got home and found Pumpkin Pete there, lonely and looking for a home -- and at a much better price too - just $5!  I really enjoyed stitching and quilting him up - don't you just love the 3D sunflower?

Now he is happy living here with us and enjoys greeting everyone who visits our home during the Fall season :*)  We don't celebrate Halloween, but I do enjoy all the colors and fun of the Fall season!  Smiling jack-o-lanterns are fun and happy.  I also have this cute little wall hanging on my sewing studio wall.  I had to take it at an odd angle because it is behind my design wall boards, so it looks a little crooked :*)

This was part of a series of small wall calendar hangings I did several years ago.  The outer checkerboard is a holder with flannel in the center behind where the cat is.  Each month I can remove the center "quilt" and stick a new one on the flannel, and the small blue border folds over the edges to keep it in place :*)

This little October quilt was done with a combination of applique and embroidery.  You trace off the pattern, embroider on the lines, and then cut up the pieces of fabrics to fit inside the lines and fuse them in place.  I really like the mosaic effect, don't you?

Close up of Fall Kitty.....

Close up of Pumpkin
So as they say,
Happy Fall Ya'll!!!

Stash Report
No finishes but one really cute add....

I bought 2-1/2 yards of this - all they had on the bolt.  Isn't it wonderful?  I love the flurry of light, medium and dark blue dots on a creamy/white background.  Can't you just see this as a background for a gorgeous Blue Christmas quilt?  Yep, it got my creative radar bouncing around like crazy!!!

Stash Enhancement Report - October 28, 2012 

Used/Destashed this week:  0.0 yards
Used/Destashed YTD 2012: 222.75 yards
Stashed this week: 2.50 yards
Stashed YTD 2012: 252.75 yards
Net Used for 2012: -30.00 yards

Show us what you've stashed/finished at Patchwork Times!

Hugs & Blessings!
Teresa & Pumpkin Pete

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Bloggers Quilt Festival

I just love the Blogger's Quilt Festival over at Amy's Creative Side!!!

Of course I have to join in on all the fun, right?  Here is my entry for Scrappy Bed Quilt .....

This is my Scrappy Bear Paws quilt, which my followers have seen many times before :*)  In fact, I just recently blogged about finishing it up with the quilting and binding.  But here are photos for new viewers....

The bear paw blocks were part of a Block of the Month program at one of our local quilt shops.  You paid $3 for the first block & pattern, then if you brought your completed block back each month, you got the fabric for the next block free.  I loved the scrappy look and had such a fun time making them each month, so I decided to make more for a bigger bed-sized quilt.  I ended up making 36 blocks total  for a good-sized queen quilt and added an extra-wide border with the little bear paw for corner stones as an added special touch :*)

I made the reds/neutrals half-square triangles for the sawtooth border as leaders and enders Bonnie Hunter-style, so that by the time I was ready to do the borders I only had to make about 50 hst's - the rest were already done!

.........  I also made a set of quilted shams to go with the quilt .....

Blogger’s Quilt Festival Stats
Finished quilt measures : 90″x 96″
Pieced & Quilted by :  Teresa Raleigh
Best Category : Favorite Bed Quilt, Favorite Scrap Quilt

If you like my Scrappy Bear Paws quilt, you can vote for it HERE =^..^=

Hugs & Blessings,

Friday, October 26, 2012

These Geese are Flying to Hawaii!

Lots & lots of Flying Geese units coming together!

I spent most of the day playing in the Ivory Tower!  I got lots of practice on my Big Shot Pro, cutting 2" strips for Hawaii Sunset.  I'm so happy with this machine and very glad that I bit the bullet and purchased it!  I don't even want to think about how my wrist would be feeling right now after cutting all those strips by rotary cutter today...

These were some scrap strips given to me by my friend Lori - they were the perfect size to cut down and add to the browns for this project!  Thanks Lori!!!
This is an example of how easy it is to cut strips out of my scraps.  Just lay them on the machine, roll it through and I have a handful of perfect, wonderful strips ready to be sewn up - YUM!!!

Then I got to work on the flying geese.  These are FUN!!!  Tomorrow I hope to find some time to play some more.  I'd like to get to the point that I can put together some more complete blocks like this one....

I had a lot of requests for the flying geese paper-piece pattern, and I'm happy to share. However, PLEASE make sure you are not a No-Reply Blogger or that you leave your email address in the comment if you are.  You can change this setting in your Blogger Profile settings.

Karen - I'd love to send you the pattern, but you are set up as No-Reply so I do not have your email address.  Please email me separately or leave your email in a new comment so I can send this out to you :*)

But that was not all of the fun I had today....   Surprises were in store for me too!!!  

First, my "little girl" got engaged!!!!

Whoop! Whoop!  
I am so happy for this sweet couple whom God has joined together!
(I have a picture of the two of them but I can't find it!)

And second, my mailbox showed me some love!!!  Seriously, I've been practicing being nice to my mailbox, like Denise over at Count It *All* Joy does - She is getting love packages all the time!  So I decided maybe I needed to be nicer to my mailbox.  And Lo and Behold - it works!!!!  Or, just maybe, I was nice to Denise?

She did a wonderful book review of this book on her blog, and she said she could tell from my comments that I would enjoy the book and that it should come live with me.  I am a happy camper folks!!!


I shouldn't be surprised that this day turned out to be such a nice one.
         This is how it started out.....

This gorgeous view to share with the LORD this morning, and my sweet Gypsy all cuddled up in the blanket on my lap....

Yep, God is good and so is Life! =^..^=

Hugs & Blessings!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Peace is Restored =^..^=

What makes you happy?

I mean, creatively HAPPY?  Besides the usual things necessary to our happiness like love, family, home, etc, what needs to be in place in order for your creative juices to leap for joy?  What sets your feet firmly in the direction of Creative HAPPY-ness?

An orderliness in your studio?  The privacy to create uninterrupted?  New tools and fabrics to play with?  A new pattern calling your name?  Retreating with a group of great friends?

For me, as I imagine for a lot of you, it is a combination of many things that makes me feel HAPPY in my own little quilting universe.   Probably foremost for me is the need to be IN LOVE with my current project!  But when I get too many things going - all of which I may be hopelessly IN LOVE with - I also need to have a definite sense of direction or I begin to feel like I'll spin off my wheels and out into never-never land!

After all of my moaning and groaning directional soul searching on Monday's post (click HERE if you missed it), I decided that I definitely need a better way to organize my work in the sewing studio.  So I put together a very thorough prioritized list of the projects I would like to have done in the next few months, and then I broke them down into 3 categories - Machine Projects, Applique/Stitcheries, and Quick Projects.

Pretty simple plan, but I began to feel better immediately!

What was my #1 Project?  
Hawaii Sunset!!!

I didn't have to think very long about which project I really, really wanted to work on, so needless to say I've been busily, happily, working away on this wonderful, colorful project all day today :*)  I'm hoping to add lots more of these blocks to my design wall by the end of the week :*)

I printed all the paper patterns for the flying geese and prepared the pieces for all the pink goose "wings" by cutting 2-1/2" squares and then cutting the squares diagonally.

I have to have 1,200 of these little suckers pieces!!!  Which means that I also need 600 "body" pieces, so I dug into my scrap bins of blue, red, yellow, green and brown and cut some rectangles for those :*)

I find that paper-piecing goes much more quickly for me if the pieces are cut to size before I start.  I also like to chain piece them two at a time, which saves time and thread.  These geese sections go together in no time flat!!!

Then I cut some 2" strips for the inner parts of the blocks.  I used my new Sizzix Big Shot Pro to do this job - it's the first time I've actually used it for a project!  I was nervous.... I held my breath..... but the strips turned out GREAT!!!

Here are my little red strips and geese "body" sections, all ready for my next session of Hawaii Sunset fun!!!

I put The Blue Collection at the top of my Applique list even though I have no hope of finishing it anytime soon.  It is a HUGE project and all hand done, so it will take quite a while yet.  But I'm really enjoying it right now and that's enough for me. =^..^=  Once I prep the pieces for the next block I can work on that in the evenings.  Also on that list are Vintage Valentines and Promises & Borders - both of them could potentially be done by the end of the year and will get some love in the next few months :*)

As for the Quick Projects, I have a few table toppers and other little miscellaneous projects I want to work into the schedule here and there. ....
Marita at The Quilter's Path got in this gorgeous gilded pear fabric and matching background and made the cutest little Partridge in a Pear Tree quilt - of course I have to make one!

And I've decided to join Jenny over at Sew Kind Of Wonderful in her "Curve It Up" Quilt Along.

I bought her Quick Curve Ruler several months ago because I just LOVE the exciting original designs she is putting out.  You really should go over to her site and check out her patterns - gorgeous!!!  The idea for the QAL is that Jenny will take traditional quilt blocks and "Curve" them up.  Here is her first block - a churndash....

Block by Jenny Pedigo from Sew Kind of Wonderful Blog
I think this will be the perfect opportunity for me to play with the ruler and have fun with it!  I'm still trying to decide what fabrics/colors to use so I haven't begun to make the block yet.  This is another project that has my HAPPY meter going off the charts :*)

So.... what makes YOU happy????  
I'm headed back to the Ivory Tower now to have some more fun....

Linking up with ....

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Hugs & Blessings!

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