Monday, June 30, 2014

Vermont Quilt Festival

This past Saturday morning, I got up quite early to make the bus that would be taking me to the Vermont Quilt Festival. The Festival takes place in Essex Junction, Vermont which is about 3 hours from my house. A friend and I drove to Nashua, NH where the first stop was scheduled for 7am. We met another friend in Nashua. There were about 50 women on the bus after we our second bus stop in Concord, NH. The trip was organized by The Patchwork Pearl. She's on facebook and has more pictures of our trip.

We made a quick stop at a rest area in Sharon, Vermont. Maryrose and Linda let me take their picture as we were heading back to the bus. We got coffee which I really needed badly!

By 11am, we were at the Expo and walking around the vendors and beautiful hanging quilts.  This corridor above was a link between the 2 large halls where the quilts and vendors were located. Each room had quilts in the middle that were surrounded by the vendors. There was so much to see! I bought lots of stuff but that's another blog post!!

Due to the size of the rooms, it never got too crowded. There was plenty of space to walk around. I was pleasantly surprised. I know this show is popular and expected to be pushed around by the crowd but it never happened.

It was a nice crowd but not overwhelming.  I think these pictures let you see what I mean.

This quilt, My Version of a Persian, won Best of Show. It was made entirely of silk and hand quilted by Christine Wickert of Penfield, NY. It was unbelievable! My picture doesn't do it justice. Just beautiful!

Forever Young is by Charlotte Angotti of South Carolina. It was a sample of a class she had taken. I loved the colors and the setting. It seemed to grab my attention.

This is Le Jardin de Mon Couer by Lucienne Auphan from St. Placide, QC, Canada.  She created the design and handmade all the applique. The fabrics for the flowers were not completely solid. They could have been hand dyed but I have no way of knowing. It made the flowers have so much texture.
So well done!

There were so many more quilts but I only took pictures of a few.  I was so afraid my phone was going to die. When I got home, my battery was down to 5%!

We boarded the bus around 4pm and headed to the Waybury Inn located in Middlebury, Vermont. This is the inn that inspired The Bob Newhart Show. The inn appears on the series but it's white on the tv show.

I couldn't get a good picture of the entrance or the front of the inn. You can kind of see the color here. It's a beige or light brown. I guess Hollywood thought white was better!

We ate dinner there. The dessert was amazing! It was gingerbread with caramel sauce and whipped cream! So good!!

We boarded the bus after dinner and made our way home. I got home around 11pm. I was exhausted! I had a fun day and but I'm already looking forward to next year!

Friday, June 27, 2014

Almost there!!

Two more blocks are done! I actually finished these blocks last week but forgot about them. I have 4 blocks left and have decided to cut them all out at once. It's no fun to cut that many pieces. I'm hoping things will move quickly with the final four all in process at once.

Here are my blocks.

I love the look so far!  I'm glad that I kept working on it. I'll like it even better when it's finished!!

I'm very excited about tomorrow.  I'm going to the Vermont Quilt Festival! It's my first time going. I'll be joining a few friends and taking a bus to VQF. We'll be there for the afternoon. It's going to be a long day but I can't wait! I'll blog about it sometime next week!! Going to bed early!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

A Knitting Finish

I finished my shawl! The pattern is called Happenstance. It's from the book Sock-Yarn Shawls by Jen Lucas. I just love this book! She has some great patterns that use sock yarn. I always buy sock yarn but hate the thought that the gorgeous yarn won't be very visible as socks. These shawls certainly show off the yarn. This yarn was a variegated grey and purple.  I received it as a gift at Christmas.
I washed it and then blocked it. I opted to make it a little larger. The top measured 58 inches while the sides were each 30 inches. I had it pinned to my carpet. However, I had to cover it with towels since my cat thinks it's fun to pull those pins out. Here's a few pictures of her keeping an eye on those pins.


You can tell she's up to no good!

Here's a close up of the knitting. I think this is a really pretty pattern. This book is full of these lovely stitches.

Here's my daughter wearing the shawl. She was getting ready for work but was nice enough to stand still for a minute so I could take the picture!

Friday, June 20, 2014

Grid Based Design Week 3

The past 2 weeks, I've been using a 2 inch square grid. This week, I graduated to 1 inch squares! It's basically the same idea, just on a smaller scale. The technique is the same but you do have to be more careful.

I drew out the grid using rulers. This week, I decided to sew the grid lines before I started filling in the squares. I really liked sewing the grid first. It gave me a travel line in between squares if I needed it for travelling. I felt I could see the grid more clearly also. Once I had the lines done, I filled in every other block with a loopy design. It wasn't too hard but it did take longer than the 2 inch squares. There were just more squares to fill in.

I liked experimenting with this grid. There are so many ways to use grids for quilting. I'll be linking up over at Amy's Free Motion Quilting Adventures. She has some great videos and pictures of grid based designs. Hope you take a peek!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Free Motion Quilting Basket Case Quilt

I'm done quilting scrolls on the ribbons of the Basket Case quilt. They didn't take very long and I didn't have to mark a thing. I love not marking!

However, I had to do something different in the white background area. I decided to micro stipple clamshells. I love this effect. The micro stippling is flattening out the white area and making the ribbons pop. I tried to take a few pictures that would show this but the lighting was not cooperating very well. The only drawback of micro stippling is how long it takes! That's okay. Time to enjoy the process!

Here's a picture of the quilt top to refresh your memory.

Looks like a lot of white background. Definitely will take a while!

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Grid-Based Design #2

I only took one picture of this week's grid design. I used the same method as last week.  I drew a 2 inch square grid using rulers. I only made loops in every other square. I think this would look better in a smaller scale. I really liked the texture it created. I feel it would make a great background design. It's amazing how something so simple can create such a nice look. I will once again be linking over at
Amy's Free Motion Quilting Adventures.

I'm still trying to get back to normal after a few weird days. I love General Hospital and always look forward to watching on my days off. When I turned the television on to watch it Thursday afternoon, I realized I had no cable. I picked up the phone and had no dial tone. The computer had no internet!
I had to call Verizon from my cell phone and they asked me if I was sure I had power!! I guess there was a problem with the cable line that delivers service to my house. Since it was later in the afternoon, we had to wait until the next day for someone to come fix it. I was also working so they came later on the day Friday. What a pain! It was a very quiet Thursday night here. I'm just catching up watching programs on tv and getting my blog post up! Technology is great, when it's working!!

Happy Father's Day to all the wonderful dads out there!! Enjoy!!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Fourteen Blocks Done!

I got 2 more blocks done! I'm finally making my way to finishing up 20 blocks. I have developed a bit of a system but the blocks still take me awhile. Between cutting up the pieces to actually sewing, these blocks are taking me forever! However, the end is in sight and I'm so glad I stuck with it!

I think the blocks look great without sashing but I will be sewing sashing and corner 9-patch blocks between each block. My stash is being used up but not that much! I thought I'd make a pretty good dent into my stash but no such luck. 

I'm off to get the next 2 blocks ready. Time to get that rotary cutter out!

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Grid-Based Design

Amy from Amy's Free Motion Quilting Adventures is featuring grid based designs for free motion quilting this month. I've done very little in this area. I really needed to try something out. She had many examples on her blog but I decided to try this one. I've done a lot of this back and forth looping but never in a grid format.

I decided to just draw a small grid for practice. I used 2 inch squares as the basis of the grid. There are many products out there that you can use. I actually own one!

I bought this when I took classes at MQX back in April. I took a class with Gina Perkes. She showed us many different way to use grids. I ran to the vendors and bought this one. However, it's one inch squares which I thought may be too small for my practice piece. This stencil is easy to use with Pounce chalk so I could have used the chalk and erased lines to make it 2 inches square. I decided making the grid myself was just as easy! Sometimes you just have to do things the old fashioned way!

Here's my grid all filled in! I had a little trouble maneuvering around at first but it did get easier. I would like to try it with the smaller squares. It's a nice way to fill up background space.

I'll be linking up over at Amy's blog. Go have a look see! Also, Craftsy is having a huge sale! There's a class I've been looking at that's less than half price! Great deal! Enjoy your weekend!

Sunday, June 1, 2014

June Weather!

The weather is just perfect today! I've been diligently working on my 2 quilt projects indoors. I've done some machine quilting and I also cut out all the pieces for my next two blocks for the Tone It Down quilt. However, I've been wanting to go outdoors and enjoy the weather.  I decided to start a lace shawl. I feel knitting is great when you want something portable. I can sit on my deck and keep knitting and enjoying the sun all at the same time!

This lace shawl pattern is called Happenstance. It's from the book Sock-Yarn Shawls by Jen Lucas. I had some variegated sock yarn that I felt would work out very nicely. It will measure 48" by 20". I think it will make a nice Christmas gift for a friend. It's difficult to think about Christmas during this nice weather but this is the time to start those holiday projects. They always take longer than expected.

Here's a close up:

The pattern is just starting to emerge. I've really missed working on a lace project. They're a bit demanding but I just love the final product! Sometimes even watching television can be too distracting while knitting the pattern. The deck is perfect! Nice and quiet but outdoors!

Hope you're all enjoying nice weather this weekend! So glad the winter is over and summer is just about here!

Old and New!

I made this quilt about 15 years ago. It's called Starry Night. I signed up for a Block of the Month. I would receive directions as...