Monday, March 30, 2009

4 Happy Friends. . .CWD Qlt Class, TMQ

Four happy quilters*: Connie, Jay, Kathy, & Cyn;-) all taking the Civil War Diary Quilt class at the Temecula Quilt Company. What a wonderful group of friendly ladies. I think there are about 15 of us altogether. And we have a lot of F-U-N!
We do manage to get some sewing done, too, as evidenced by these wonderful blocks on the design wall. Which is mine? Look at the tippy-top of the photo and the 'smidge' of a block showing is mine. I took the picture and cut off my own block! *back 2 the photo class*. . . lol.

Here are some more blocks that others made in the class--aren't they great? I love the colors & designs being used in the repro fabric lines.
This is a quickie to get the photos up... I'll write more later. . .
Toodles, and thank you for stopping by. . . . .
*photo posted with permission of all four in the photo... thank you ladies!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

"Happy Mail". . .more B'day surprises!

What a H-A-U-L! Wowzer, look at all the wonderful goodies my dear friend Steffini sent me for my B'day recently! I was instructed to keep all this wonderfulness 'under my bonnet' because a similar box was on its way to another lucky friend. . . so I had to contain my excitement and w-a-i-t! It was soooooo hard, but finally, I can share my beautiful giftie! Wait 'till you see what all was tucked inside:

Below is a picture of the purse and sewing kit Steffini made in the closed position. Above they are open to show the inside and what was IN the inside! Two needle cases held closed with little pewter buttons--so darling! In the little purse was a gorgeous thimble [it fits!] and a tiny glass jug of real honest-to-goodness Texas Land! So now I can say I am a proud Texas land owner! *lol*. Steffini enclosed the cutest card--I love it! And, inside the card was TWO b'day siggies! How grand is that?! Golly, Steffini also sent something fun and fragrant for my bath: "The Fizzy Baker". . . a Cupcake Bath Fizz! It's way too cute and I can't bring myself to put it into water, so it lives on top of my dresser! It even has a candle on top of it!
Steffini's mom Pat also sent a goodie...a cute little Chili Pepper Pin Cushion & Needle Sharpener... it's sitting next to my sewing machine right now. Thank you, Pat!
Now, drum roll please.... here's the piece-de-resistance! Have you ever seen anything so darling as this little Texas Bluebonnet dress?! Steffini made it! Her stitching is amazing, even, and so precise. . . golly, I'm speechless to describe her work. Click on the picture to make it larger and check out all her perfect handwork!

This is the wall hanging Steffini made showcasing the dress. It hangs in my bedroom where I can see it everyday! Thank you so much, dear friend. And thank you, too, for the lovely dedication label you wrote and sewed on the back of the quilt. Wonderful! Thank you so much for everything, Steffini. Your incredible gift simply overwhelms me and words just aren't enough. I don't know how I will ever be able to thank you! When I come to Houston in the fall, you are gonna get the biggest HUG! Oh, and I think we will go shopping, too! *vbg*

All for now... toodles, and thank you for stopping by today & sharing my joy. . .


Monday, March 23, 2009

Spring is Here!. . . Season's 1st Cymbidium

Spring is here when flowers boom! This is a picture of my yellow cymbidium orchid that is currently living in front of the window in my living room. It needs bright light in the daytime and cooler temperatures at night which will help the blooms last longer. I just love orchids. . . they grow like weeds and thrive on neglect! My kind of plants. lol
This is a single-spike plant but has 11 lovely blooms on it this year. The blooms usually last a couple of months. My red/white phalaenopsis currently has one bud but has yet to open up and bloom. It can be hard to wait for these beauties to open up and reveal their splendor. When the next ones bloom, I will post more pictures.
Yesterday and last night I spent wrestling with PPing--- I need to make 30 more heart blocks. I practically destroyed the area I was sewing in! What a MESS! LOL. I wonder if my Homeowner's Insurance Policy covers home-destruction by paper-piecing! lol. I think I will crawl back to the safety of the "applique corner!" Oh well, by the time I reached the sixth heart, I finally got a feel for the process. . . I think. :) This next series of hearts are for the "Special H2H" swap that I am in with six other ladies: two from Canada, two from Europe [Germany & Poland], and two from the USA. We are making five different Special hearts for each of the six of us. So now I'm making 30 more hearts! *grin*. I seem to be having a love affair with pinks and reds lately, so making 70+ hearts [total of both swaps] should quench the thirst! lol. Only time will tell.
All for now. . . toodles and thanks for stopping by,
PS: I 'found' the macro button on my digital camera. Perhaps there is digital imaging hope for me afterall! lol.
PPSS: I put a new 'button' on this blog: "Today's Flower". Please scroll way down to just above the 'labels' area on the lower right side of this blog to find the widget you can click on to get to their site.... lot's of beautiful flowers there... I'm waiting to see if my orchid image will post as the Guest flower of the day... crossing fingers. *vbg*

Saturday, March 21, 2009

H2H... how I did it. . .

This is how I made my Heart2Heart blocks. It is an easy and quick method!
For EACH heart block: CUT two rectangles from FOCUS fabrics--I chose different pinks--at 6.5 x 3.5 inches; from BACKGROUND fabric... CUT one square at 3.5x3.5"; and two squares at 2x2".
Lightly draw one diagonal line across EACH square. Place square in corner of rectangle [line up carefully so seam lines will match later on] and stitch a 'smidge' [one or two threads] from the line. Press flat to set stitches, then open and press... voila! A perfect corner triangle. Trim off the excess 1/4" away from sewn line. I save these trimmings... please see next two pictures. Also, I use these trimmings as "leaders" and "enders" while I am sewing. They make great little blocks to use in doll quilts or nice bits for crumb quilting.

As you can see in the picture below, my little kitty Miss Diva always tries to vie for a place on the ironing setup next to my machine. I guess the warmth is just too irresistable. The second pic shows her giving me "the look" after I encouraged her to scoot down a bit so I could press my blocks! lol

BTW, speaking of pressing blocks. . . I discovered that if I press on BOTH sides of the setting squares BEFORE opening and trimming, accuracy is greatly improved... no more having to trim off one or two threads! Yippee... that's a time saver!
After sewing/pressing/trimming two small and one large b/g square to each rectangle, place two 'sides' together and stitch with a 1/4" s.a. to complete the heart block. Be sure to slant the sewing line on the large squares half one way and half the other so you will wind up with a point for the bottom of the heart... ask me how I know I wasn't paying attention on the 'prototype' and sewed both squares slanting the same direction! lol... don't make my mistake.
The good thing? Even with my cat's help, I managed to finish all 40 blocks and get them into today's [Saturday] noon-time mail. Happy Dance!
All for now.... toodles, and thanks 4 stopping by.

Heart 2 Heart. . .

Good Morning!

Sorry it's been so long since I posted. I came down with a bad case of the 'bug', but I'm feeling much better now.

Here is a picture of the first 30 H2H blocks that I've made for a swap on the DJAlternate Yahoo list I belong to. Should have the last 10 finished up today and in the mail by this afternoon. Only one of these is PPd, the other 29 are straight forward cut/sew/press; a good thing when one is making 40 blocks! lol

Well, I better get sewing and I'll post more 'news' later.

All for now. . . toodles and thanks for stopping by.