Saturday, December 31, 2011

Year in Review

So I made a lot of mug rugs this year.  I also swpped a lot of small items and doll quilts and table runners.  It looks like I may have finished 2 larger throw sized quilts.  I have not included the multitude of tops nor the numerous swp blocks I have made.  They will soon be appearing in my New Year's 2012 UFO list.    Im getting ready to participate in #shparty with other intrepid quilters.  Im hyped up on ice tea and my cat is curled up in my lap. I leave you with Happy New Year's wishes!

Oh yeah I forgot to share this.  My grandpa Jack turned 90 on th 18th!

the back

I made him this mug rug.

keep dreaming...Colleen

He doesnt look 90 does he?  He drove from PA to NC for Christmas!

Friday, December 30, 2011

I needed a little Christmas

Where did December go?  I enjoyed the month it just went so fast!   I did not blog much because I was so tired, busy, and my carpal tunnel was acting up.  Here is a recap in no particular order (other then the way the pics are in flickr).

December 11 was our local Christmas parade here in Lewisville, NC.  My Dad owns this international Scout fire truck that he bought from his former employer Westinghouse. 

It was one of three made in the 1970's to be driven in the large turbine manufacturing plants to put out fires.  It is a pumper truck.  And I get to ride on the back and throw candy-if my sister would ever send me the picture she took I would show you me.
Here is us waiting to enter the parade.  This is our youth group from our church which just so happens to be in the background and is part of the staging ground for the parade.  That Shepard is one of my Sunday School students.

Here are some of the Pictures I took from the back of the truck

Its a big parade and a huge crowd always turns out.  We were toward the end so you may make out Santa in the distance.

Here is my sister taking that picture of me.
Here is our town square with its lovely gazebo, open air amphitheatre, playground-it has lots of events and performances.

This is my favorite shot where you can see the crowd, Santa at the end and our church steeple.  I zoomed in.  It was such a beautiful day to take pictures.

We are an old town on the outskirts of the big city of Winston-Salem.  we have experienced new controlled growth to keep the charming small town atmosphere.  We have a new pharmacy and next door there building a funeral parlor.  And still there are old homes

And here are Mom and Dad after driving me home-just a couple of blocks from downtown and I road on the back all the way.  Wahoo!

More Christmas later....

 Keep dreaming...Colleen
new winter shower curtain bought cheap on sale!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Design Challenge

Quokka quilts has challenged us to make our own fabric bundle from the Fat Quarter Shop's stock.  I was excited becuse I always love the custom bundles.  So here is mine.
I focused on golds, aquas and grays in modern graphic prints.  My solids reflect a more modern color pallette as well. I had started aout with a red aqua gray theme and this is what it morphed into.  Even as I made my mosaic from what I thought was my final choices I still changed one.  Below are the names of the fabrics I chose.

First row
Decadence Yellow Floral Flourish Yardage SKU# C2634-YELLOW
Yard Sale Gold Confetti Dots Yardage SKU# STELLA-37-GOLD
Nesting Gold Tossed Chandeliers Yardage SKU# 21906-S
Promenade Yellow Damask Mosaic Yardage SKU# C2642-Yellow
Bella Solids 30's Yellow Yardage SKU# 9900-23
Second row
Impressions Teal Dahlia Yardage SKU# PWTY012-TEALX
Little Aples Aqua Leaves Yardage SKU# 18512-47
Modernology Aqua Mod Vines Yardage SKU# MO-4809
Secret Garden Turquoise Paisley Garden Yardage SKU# SH5019-TURQ-D
Free Spirit Designer Solids Aqua Yardage SKU# S20-AQUA
Third row
Peacock Lane Gray Falling Flowers Yardage SKU# DC5084-GRAY-D
Echo Gray Aneta Yardage SKU# 33408-8
Secret Garden Khaki Vintage Ironwork Yardage SKU# SH5233-KHAK-D
Prince Charming Honey Snail Scallop Yardage SKU# TP11-HONEY
Free Spirit Designer Solids Sand Dune Yardage SKU# S34-SANDDUNE

keep dreaming...Colleen

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Giveaway Winner!

December is such a busy month.  I dont seem to have time to blog at all.  That and my wrist pain is acting up. Maybe being off work for a while will help.  So I picked a winner but never posted it.  Oops! So with out further ado...the winner of the Christmas fabric is

58 Jessica said...
 I follow! Thanks for such a generous giveaway!
Saturday, December 10, 2011 2:51:00 PM

I also follow Jess.  She is a college student and a newer quilter.  I won her first giveaway last year so it's nice to see her win one of my giveaways!  Check out her blog Quilty Habit.  Jess email me your address and I will get it out to you asap.  I dont know if I will have time to mail it until after Christmas.

keep dreaming...Colleen

Last years white christmas on the lake at Mom and Dad's house.  Im wishing very hard.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Winner will be picked tomorrow

Go to the previous post if you have not had a chance to enter my giveaway.  I will pick a winner probably around noon Sunday.  And now back to baking cookies, burning cds and wrapping presents!

keep dreaming...Colleen
My angel tree decrated in store bought and bazaar made angels.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Quilter's Blog Hop giveaway day

Are you on Santa's good list?  Are you ready for lots of giveaways?

Today is the start of the Quilter's Blog Hop Party with the Quilting Gallery. 

Im giving away some great Christmas Fabric from my stash! 
Some is new and some is old but all free fabric is good!
(not actual fabric-my camera died last night!)

You will recieve fabrics totaling about 2 yards. 

All you have to do is comment for one or all of the following. 
The more comments the more chances to win!
1.  Be a follower and let me know you are.
2.  Tell me about your favorite Christmas tradition.
3.  Tweet, facebook, flickr, or blog or any other social media way of sharing this giveaway.

That's it!  Check out the other giveaways on the Quilter's Blog Hop Party!

12/11/11 Update:  Camera working! Here is the picture of the fabric sitting under my small angel tree that sits in the upstairs hallway.
5 different fabrics from 1/4 yard to a yard in size.  More than 2 yards in total.

Keep dreaming...Colleen

Christmas tree in my library.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Quick and Easy tree skirt

Do you know the very first thing I ever pieced was a Christmas tree skirt?  About a zillion years ago when I was around 20 years old(ok only 22 years ago), my mom asked me to finish a project for her.  She had bought about 10 or 12 yards of Christmas prints at Piece Goods to make a tree skirt.  Mom had cut out 5 inch squares(probably with a cardboard templete) and had stopped there.  So on Christmas vacation home from college I assembled a tree skirt.  She had cut so many squares that I had enough to make two!  One for home and one to put away for me!  It was the easiest pattern ever that I figured out. 
Just piece a large square.
Here is a tiny version I made this week for a tree I put together for my sister's boyfriend. When I opened my Christmas scrap bin I saw I still had lots of that old fabric.  So some of the scraps used above were from the old tree skirt.
  The secret to making it is to keep the rows at an even number and leave the center seam on one side halfway open.  I dont use batting or quilt it, though you could if you wanted to.   I sew the backing on like making a pillow. 

 Make sure to sew around the backing at both sides of the open seam being careful not to catch the edge of the fabric on the opposite side.  Cut the backing fabric to create the opening before turning. 

 If you are sewing for a real tree with a thick trunk create a square with an odd number of rows.  Leave out the center block.  That was how I made the larger tree skirts. 

It is a fast and effective way to make a tree skirt of any size.  You could cut the top into a circle to make it round as well. 
I have one for my tree at school that was not scrappy.  I tied red buttons at the intersections of each of the squares.

keep dreaming...Colleen
My October black for my partner.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Catching up on some swaps

I decided to wrap up this year with my monthly Bee swaps and then take a break in 2012.  I have a pile of UFOs that really need to be finished.  But I still have some blocks to make and here are some reccent finishes.

This was my November block for my partner in Block Swap Adventure.  She wanted card trick in any colors so I used some DS Quilts Picnic and Fairgrounds fabric.  I really love this line.

This block was totally improved. I focused on the teal color and found scraps from my scrap box.  I then improvised the pattern I think I'll call garden star.  This was for my October partner.
This is a view of my new design wall.  I finally got so frustrated with the tiny fleece one.  I was at Joann's and noticed the felt was on sale.  I bought 2.5 yards of a 90"' wide light blue felt.  Notice I now have room to leave all of my Bee blocks at the top.  I love it!

Keep dreaming...Colleen

Beautiful basillica in Asheville, NC.

Thursday, November 24, 2011


Happy Thanksgiving! 
 I know I am thankful for another year of life behind me. 
 I didn't mention it earlier in the month but November 5th was an important anniversary for me.  No one else seems to remember it anymore but me.  It has been six years since my last chemo.  I survived that horrible time of uterine cancer that robbed me of years of my life and killed my future children.  Sometimes the pain of loss hits me. 
 But I am thankful for my life, my job, my home and my family.  And my cute cat Kalli.
I hope everyone has a great day with family and friends.  Me I'm off to make zuchinni bread-yum! Then to mom and dad's for fun day.

I know I've been silent for the last week and a half.  As a teacher librarian I've been dealing with a book fair and not a lot of sewing.  The last two days I've been making up for lost time and have a lot of sewing to blog about.  Also my trip to Asheville two weeks ago.

Keep dreaming...Colleen

Georgeous golden leaves of the ginko tree.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Mini quilt party

Did you know amylouwho is having a party!  A mini quilt party! 
So I thought I would join in and share a recent swap finish.  Why is it I'm always sending my favorite finishes to others?  Ah such is the way of a quilter!
Have you seen this loveliness?
And this loveliness?
This is fabric the first DS  Quilts (Denise Schmidt) line, Picnic & Fairgrounds, found at Joann's.  Some of us are alittle obsessed with Denise Schmidt fabrics at Joann's.  So obsessed we have this flickr group to discuss and share it.  And there are two other lines since this one was released last spring.

We DS Quilts devotees are so obsessed we decided to do a DS Quilts Doll Quilt swap using just Picnic & Fairgrounds!  I was all gun ho to use my Kona Ash for the background and made these little squares and tried them.  I liked it alot!
However when I posted to the group I got lukewarm response so I tried it against a white.
Everyone like this version, but I wasn't thrilled so I put it away for a while.  I felt like it didn't represent me. I designed new quilts in my graph pad. Finally as the deadline approached I was hit with inspiration.  My paper pieced stars!  I love making them!  I have been doing them since I first used them as a border for a round robin quilt in 1994.  Set the original part on point and put a star in each corner!
I love how it turned out! (though I still want to do it in ash).  The yellow was just right for setting off the  center.  I decided not to put an outer border on it.
When quilting I don't draw out lines or think to far ahead.  I guess I just(forgive the cliche) let it speak to me.  If you look closely in the center I did a series of squares with narrow and wide widths between.  In the center I turned the squares on point.  I had fun quilting around the stars too.
I used a darker blue and red small scale print to bind it.  I love using these clips to hold the binding in place!
I think it turned out pretty great and my partner really liked it!

Don't forget to go back and check out all the mini quilts at the party!

Keep dreaming...Colleen

This is the DS Quilts doll quilt my partner Leona sent me!  It's awesome!