Friday, February 29, 2008

The Tale of the Irish Chain

Long long ago there was a bedroom in a home with the most beautiful cabbage rose wallpaper on the walls. A young maiden bought this lovely fabric for a quilt for that home. She knew she wanted it to be an Irish Chain because she had admired a similar quilt made with the large blocks of the irish chain done in floral fabric. And it was sooo lovely.
Many many years later that maiden and her stash of fabric - having survived a divorce, then a 400 mile move and then 5 local moves later - realized that fabric lay uncut - in a clear container in the front of the garage where the maiden now parks her vehicle. Every day when she backed out and every day when she pulled in - she saw that fabric for the Irish Chain quilt. For many many days. One day - she decided - even though she no longer had the lovely wallpaper and room - that it was TIME for the fabric to reach its destiny. It was meant to be an Irish Chain Quilt. It was not meant for the garage or the yard sale pile. It has begun its journey to becoming an Irish Chain Quilt. How much longer will it be before the journey is complete and the quilt is resting on the bed? This is only the beginning...

The Moral of the Story is - Some patterns and fabrics it seems - just need lots of time to gel before they actually start to become ANYTHING.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

The Quilt Shop Sale

Our local quilt shop had a 2 day "Prior to Inventory - everything $3.99/yd" sale. The poor souls who worked there carried more than a thousand bolts of fabric down a two story flight of steps to a sale room. It was incredible. Tables down the center of the room and around the perimeter. One wall had 3 long tables where the employees did nothing but cut fabric, and occasionally ring a bell when a bolt was emptied. The lines were long - but that gave one time to stare at more fabric on the tables or in other peoples arms. There was a lot of - "if you aren't buying ALL of that - can I have it when you have your piece cut?" And the general happy comraderie that quilters and fabric lovers share. So - I promised I would post what I purchased so here goes.

The flannels - were originally $10.99 and $12.99/yd. so they were a great buy. Looking at my pile - I would say now - I didn't purchase enough!!! But - I was attempting to buy only for identified projects. These flannels will be united with leftover flannels from the lap quilt I made my dad to make another for my stepmother.

Then came the BIG QUESTION - what fabrics to buy for the block in a bag activity with the quilt guild. (See previous post) I really wanted a beachy theme, and look what I found.....I can't wait to see what these become - Then of course - batiks were another great buy. I only got these...what was I thinking??? I SHOULD HAVE GOT MORE!!

This rose fabric was just too too beautiful to pass up. As was this bluish purple.

Then of course I had to get these fat quarters -

and for some reason I thought I needed some red. Oh yes, that was if I made a bird block for the block in a bag - - I was going to make a cardinal - (Our State Bird)- Well, now I have some reds don't I.

Stay tuned for what each of these become.....

Monday, February 11, 2008

Block in a Bag #1

I joined the local Quilt Guild last fall - to make some new quilting friends, and to be inspired to be more productive. Well - it is working!! The Quilt Guild started a few new things this year - one of which that I signed up for was Block in a Bag. A pretty cool idea. Here is how it works:
You pick a theme and buy three fabrics to match your theme that you want everyone to use in your blocks. Cut ten fat eighths. Put a fat eighth of each of the three fabrics in a bag with your name and the theme, and the names of the other 9 participants. When it is your month - distribute the bags to each of the 9 participants in your group and the following month - they bring back the block made to fit your theme, using the 3 fabrics. They can add other fabrics, but the 3 provided should be the major fabrics in the block. The block must be at least 8"x8" and no greater than 12"x12". It can be square or rectangular. The result - if you make one too - 10 blocks!! Cool!!

This month was not my month to distribute a bag. I received a bag with some blue, some brown and some green, and the theme was birds and birdhouses.

I looked and looked at patterns and ideas. I would have liked to do a bird, and have still considered adding an appliqued one to the block I made, but not too happy with my machine applique skills. You can applique, foundation piece or piece from your own design or a pattern.

I paper pieced the birdhouse. It had been a really long time since I had done paper piecing, so it took me a while to remember how that process works.

I actually intended for this to be a trial block - and was going to use some blues and greens of my own, then decide if I liked it or not - but by accident - used the blue provided, and then knew there wouldn't be enough to start over - so - it is what it is. I need to be more careful next month.

It is nice to have that finished 2 weeks in advance. Much better than waiting till the last minute.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Cookie Search

Ok Quilters - I am on a search for a cookie recipe. This recipe I tasted at a bakery and it was the best peanut butter cookie ever. Unfortunately - the bakery is no longer in business. I can't imagine why....we surely haven't cut carbs enough to put a bakery out of business have we???

Anyway - this peanut butter cookie was moist and almost flakey - with peanuts in it. Don't think that it was crunchy peanut butter because the nuts were large.

Anyone want to volunteer up a recipe like that? It would make me SEW Happy!!

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