Monday, April 30, 2012

Quilt Square Quilt Along and Bonus Triangles

Here is my progress on the Oklahoma Backroads workshop that I took with Bonnie Hunter last week.  I have 20 blocks complete...only 100 or so more to go!  :P

One idea Bonnie presented was "bonus triangles."  This isn't a new idea to me, but it's one that I was never too excited about.  It seemed to take a lot of extra time (it does)...and I wasn't sure the time and effort would be worth it.

She pointed out that a couple of her quilts in her newest book "Scraps & Shirtails 2" were made almost entirely from these bonus triangles.  Hmmm...that had my interest a little more.  She also shared a way to make those triangles a size that plays well with other size squares and rectangles.  I decided I'd give it a try for this project since I would be making a large amount of those "half" flying geese blocks above.

I'm going to show you the technique for making 2" unfinished triangles from a 2.5" unfinished flying geese unit.  First, find a business card that is 2" high and cut a 2" square from one side.

 Next cut the square on the diagonal to make two triangles.

Now draw TWO lines on your 2.5" down the center and one with the business card triangle place in the corner.  (click image for a closer view)

 Sew along both lines...I sew just inside the center line for better results....

Cut between the two sewn lines.  Don't fret about the smaller seam allowance!  According to Bonnie, it's going to be okay!!  The seam is's not going to come apart or anything.  If you sew 1/2" away from the center line (in order to have 1/4" seam allowance), you'll end up with a HST that is about 1 3/4"...and that dimension doesn't play well with anything else!

Press both pieces and viola!  

 Before long, you'll have a pile of HST like this!  This isn't even all of them....

Look what I made from 90 bonus triangles!!  This is the Quilt Square Quilt Along block for April.  How perfect is that?  My block is a little bigger than the pattern, because my triangles are bigger, but I think that's okay, right?  I love it.  I added a small border and I'm going to finish it for a pretty table topper.  Or maybe I want it to be a wall hanging?  Hmm....decisions, decisions....

Be sure to check out Jo's Country Junction on Tuesday for more Quilt Square Quilt Along blocks.  It was quilter's choice this month, so there are a couple other cute designs to see!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Bonnie...Day 3!!

I was pooped last night after a long day of fun at the Cathedral Stars workshop...I didn't have the energy to post pictures when I got home.  I know I just keep saying it...but it was just sooooo much fun!  If you ever get a chance to take one of Bonnie's it!  You won't be disappointed.  

So, here are I am...with my BFF Bonnie.  We're just chattin'...talking about quilts.  
Yeah, that's how we roll. :P

Soon it was time to get to work....there are lots of different parts in this quilt, so Bonnie had lots of demos to share.  The pattern uses the Tri Rec tools...which are awesome for making those "Peaky and Spike" star points.  Totally worth the $$ and makes sewing the block so much easier!

Bonnie used one of the gal's Featherweights to sew up a block and show us how simple they go together!

See how perfect?  :)

 Here is the infamous Hexie quilt!  It's even more impressive in person!  Just gorgeous.

 This is Carrie's Cathedral Stars....she came to the workshop even though she'd already made the quilt!  Now that's a die hard fan!

Here are the blocks I assembled.  I have the parts assembled for more, but this is as far as I got for complete blocks.  Seems like I should have more to show for an all day workshop...but there is lots of time spent making the four patches and the star points, etc.  Even though I had pre-cut most of my fabrics, I was still pushing it to get this much done!  Oh...maybe it was all that chatting with my new BFF (see picture above).  :P

Here's a funny story.  Sunday night I posted pictures from the first workshop and Pam, who stops by my blog occasionally, sends me a message and says, "Oh, there is my friend Robin.  She took the class too."  I'm thinking?  What?  Who?  So we emailed back and forth and she tells me that her friend Robin came down from upstate New York just to see Bonnie!  So the next night at guild meeting, I plop myself down to get ready to hear Bonnie and the gal next to me introduces herself as a guest, and that she and her husband came down for a few days so she could come to the workshops.  I said, "Are you Robin?"  She looked at me like I had horns coming out of my head.  LOL  I filled her in that her friend Pam spotted her on my blog....and now here we were sitting next to each other.  Isn't that crazy that we would end up sitting next to each other in a room of 100 people?!  We were meant to meet for sure!  Here we are at Tuesday's workshop...  Quilters are the find friends when you least expect it!

And to end the day...dinner out at McGlynn's Pub in Dover.

Thank you Bonnie for a wonderful, memorable three days!  It was great fun to spend time with current friends and to make new friends too!

Happy Quilting!
Monday, April 23, 2012

Bonnie - Day 2

 Just a quick post...but I wanted to share the fun we had with Bonnie tonight at the guild meeting.  She did a lecture on leaders and enders and how she got started with them...and then had a trunk show of some of her beautiful quilts.  She did a great job...lots of personal stories and great tips to control those scraps!!

 I won't inundate you with too many photos...just a few of the highlights.  :)

Bonnie was signing books before the meeting started.... 

I love her demo quilt in the was fun to see it up close and in person!

This quilt is definitely going on my "must do" list.  This picture just does not do it's amazing!  The name escapes me right now, but it's in the Scraps & Shirttails Book 2.  If she has any copies of the book left tomorrow, I'm getting one!

I love this one too...I love mini 9patches, so this is right up my alley!!

And of course..there was plenty of food!!

Bring quilters together and there will be food.

After the guild meeting, we set up the hall for tomorrow's workshop, Cathedral spot is all ready.  I just have to bring my sewing machine.  For's sleep time!  

Happy Quilting!
Sunday, April 22, 2012

Bonnie...Day 1 was a great workshop with Bonnie Hunter.  She's exactly what I thought she would like be from reading her blog for years.  She's full of energy, but down to earth at the same time.  She was a great teacher and I loved that she spent time with each person around the room throughout the day. 

The day started out with a demo of how to construct the block we were using for the quilt, "Oklahoma Backroads."  The block above is the only block you just need 100 or so for your quilt. :P   No special tools needed for this project, but still some great tips were shared to help make the construction easier.

She also showed us how to "do-bone" a shirt.  It's amazing how much nice cotton fabric you can get out of a shirt!  Who knew??

 I took FOUR of my "Bonnie" quilts to show and tell.  Someone was sweet enough to grab my camera and get a picture for me of this one.  I also took my Roll Roll Cotton Boll, Orca Bay, and Scrappy Sister's Choice.

I was able to completely assemble 8 blocks...and the parts for a few more.  I know I'm going to love this one too!!

This is a few of the girls from our sewing group with Bonnie.  I'm in the center in the black shirt.  :)

It was just a great day....lots of laughs and a full day of sewing.  What could be better?  I was so excited to meet Bonnie...I've been a big fan for years.  And look, she even autographed my book. :)

Stay tuned for more...tomorrow is a trunk show and her lecture on Leaders and Enders.  Tuesday I get to take another workshop!!  Yay!

Happy Quilting!
Saturday, April 21, 2012

A finish and some exciting news!

Two months ago, our guild did an "ugly FQ" swap.  We brought in what we considered an ugly FQ in a small brown paper bag....and then picked someone else's paper bag to take home.  I wish I would have taken a picture of the FQ I was grey and had George Washington's portrait all over it.  LOL

We had two months to complete a project using that "ugly" fabric....I'm down to the wire, but I got my project finished.  Can you pick the "ugly" fabric here? (click the pics for a bigger view)
It's the light brown fabric with the swirl design!  Did you guess it?  It's not my favorite...but doesn't look half bad here, does it?

 I used it for the lining and one of the yo-yo's too.

The pattern is by Terry Atkinson called "Zippy Strippy."  I changed it up a little by adding that off white accent strip down the center.  I love this pattern and can see endless design possibilities using the basic construction technique.  Now I have a nice little gift for someone!

I almost forgot to share that I recently won a blog giveaway!  Barb at Bejeweled Quilts was giving away this Aurifil thread, which happens to be my all time favorite thread for piecing.  yay!  I was so excited to win!  Thanks Barb!

My other exciting news...and I can barely contain myself...I am going to meet Bonnie Hunter tomorrow!!  She is coming to our guild for three days of workshops and I signed up for two of them.  She is also doing her trunk show at our guild meeting Monday night.  I hope to take lots of pictures to share with you!

Happy Quilting! 
Sunday, April 15, 2012

Catchin' up

Hubby and I spent a few days in Lancaster County during the first part of April.  It was absolutely gorgeous while we were there.  Maybe a little on the cool side, but the sun was shining so bright...I loved it!  I'm only sorry I didn't take more pictures.  Everything was so green and the farms were coming to life.  

We visited the Strasburg Railroad...

...and rode the train through the Amish Countryside....

Our son, Zach, would have LOVED to have seen this train about 20 years ago!  :)  He loved Thomas the Tank Engine.

One of our -almost- daily stops was here to get a fresh, warm pretzel.  You have to try one if you are ever in the area.  I highly recommend their fresh-squeezed lemonade too!

Buster enjoyed the week too...we stayed in our camper and the RV park was quiet and relaxing.  :)

Of course the visit wouldn't be complete without a few stops at the local quilt shops.  My mom and I have just been talking about these chicken pincushions...I found a whole basket of them at one of the shops!

And who wouldn't need an Amish chicken?

There were loads of beautiful quilts...I snapped this picture on the sly.  I always feel guilty taking pictures in an Amish store.  LOL

I have been getting a lot of sewing and quilting done since I've been home.  Unfortunately, I can't share pictures of most of it just yet!  As you might remember, I go on an annual quilting retreat every May.  There are lots of "secret" projects to make, so I've been working on those and quilting for customers.  Soon, I will be able to share pictures!!  

One project I can show is this charity quilt.  It is also for the retreat in May...we all bring a child's quilt for donation and Angela, our hostess with the mostest, donates them to a local pregnancy center in her town.

This is the first project made entirely with my Go Cutter.  I have lots of novelty fabrics and I picked up a few more while in Lancaster.  I thought they would be perfect to try out my new triangle die.

I love it!

 I even have the backing and binding just has to wait it's turn on the longarm.  

 Something else I'd like to share with mom has a blog!!  I'm so proud of her!  Please stop by and take a look....Jan's Happy Place.

Happy Quilting!