Friday, December 31, 2010

A Happy UFO New Year to All!

No, this isn't about alien abductions and mother ships; it's about my New Year's resolution to attack the pile of UnFinished Objects in my sewing room and get some things finished in 2011....

I've been challenged by my JAM group to roust 'em out, count 'em up and see how many I can get done this year......what's your New Year's goal? Finish things? Exercise more? Spend more time with loved ones? Please share......

Thursday, December 30, 2010

International Mystery Quilt of the Month -- and JAM

We've been doing the International Mystery Quilt of the Month at my local quilt shop, Bolts in the Bathtub, for four months now (which sadly means I have four more UFO's). Each month we get the fabric in our choice of colorways for the blocks to make a lap size quilt. A lot of people participating in this have varied the block sets and have purchased additional fabrics so that they are really more individual than one would think.

I don't know who made each quilt; they were handed to Dawna and she held them up. That's her black skirt under each quilt....

This is an interesting set for the blocks from the third month -- I think that was Sweden...there were two other colorways; one was blue and yellow, the other was red/green.

Another interesting set for those blocks -- the addition of the grey fabric really set off the black/white piecing.

This is from the second month, Italy -- this was the color set referred to as Lasagna.....

The log cabin blocks from the red/green colorway in the third month; I haven't really looked closely at the directions yet, but I think this is the set that was given to us.

This is from the Italy month -- this colorway, red/green/cream, was called Lasagna!

Again, this set is a variation that sets it apart from the rest of the log cabin quilts; this has been a really fun thing to do -- everybody does something just a little different!

The lady who made this quilt said that she had made a block construction mistake and so altered the set to accommodate the error! I love the creativity that a simple mistake can inspire!

Lasagna, but she purchased more fabric to make additional blocks so the quilt is a lot bigger...

At the end of the meeting, Peggy showed her bargello quilt -- king size and gorgeous!

JAM (Just Another Monday): A couple of weeks ago, Dawna called me and asked me if I wanted to join a small group of quilters that would meet monthly. She and a couple of friends had counted up the number of kits they had purchased and stuck somewhere in their sewing room and decided that they should get working on them. The goal of the group would be to take one of the kits out of quilt oblivion each month and finish it.

I have to admit that I do buy kits -- sometimes they just look so tempting and I don't even have to spend the time picking out fabrics. I buy them and toss them in a bin along with all the other kits I've purchased, thinking that someday I'm going to make that quilt! So I went to a local coffee shop last Monday to meet with five other kit obsessed quilters to see what the game plan would be.

Tiffany Hayes, of Needle in a Hayes Stack (a wonderful pattern company -- you should check her out! Click here to go to her website) brought photos of her 37 UFO's that she would like to work on. Being the most practical of us, she figured if she participated in JAM for three years, she'd have all but one of them done. I, on the other hand, am a total chicken and don't want to even think about my UFO's, let alone all the kits I have!

This should be a really fun group -- I'll take photos of the finished projects at the January meeting so you can see how we are doing on our goals!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Dinner at the Water Grill -- Los Angeles CA

As part of our season ticket subscription to the performances at the Mark Taper Forum, we went to see "Harps & Angels" last Wednesday night. Our good friends and neighbors, John and Charlene, are much more familiar with the Los Angeles restaurant scene than we are, so they are in charge of picking the restaurants that we go to before the play.

Keeping the holiday season in mind, I had requested a restaurant this time that would have lots of decorations. After discussing it between themselves, John and Charlene selected the Water Grill. We had heard great things about the food, so were really looking forward to this!

The building where the Water Grill is located had a beautifully decorated lobby, with garlands wound around the columns.....

...near a Christmas tree wrapped with wide velvet ribbons, covered with ornaments and adorned with sparkly bows tucked into the boughs!

There were beautiful wreaths throughout the lobby and swags cascading down the stairwells. I took some pictures of the swags, but they turned out blurry because of the darkness in the stairwells caused by the very high ceilings of the building lobby.

Further into the loby was an arrangement of Christmas toys with some lighted deer, nutcrackers and other holiday decorations. Wow -- certainly enough glitz to get us into the spirit!

Oh BTW -- the food was awesome and the play was really good, too!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Have to Get an Easy Glitzer!

My friend Nicole McCracken broke her foot a couple of months ago and there were some pictures in my blog about how she decorated her cast! If you missed that one, click here to see it...

So I saw her the other day when we were both shopping for groceries and she had "graduated" from the cast to a boot -- and, of course, Nicole decorated it!

Instead of slobbing into the grocery store with no makeup and messy hair, wouldn't it be nice to look as good as Nicole does in this picture?

....and a closeup! Doesn't it make you want to run right out and buy one of those decorating wands?

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Alex Anderson Quilt Retreats 2010 -- Session II Show & Tell (Part 2)

Here are the last of the quilts from the Show & Tell portion of Alex Anderson Quilt Retreats, second sesson, which was held in October 2010. A big thank you to Holly Weisberger for taking the pictures with my camera so that they could be shared with you.....

Happy Holidays!

First of all, I want to wish everyone a marvelous Holiday Season and a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year! Since we returned from vacation on the 14th, I've been doing all the normal holiday things such as shopping, going to the theatre, shopping, wrapping gifts, shopping, visiting friends, shopping.....and totally neglecting the blog. So I need to make up for lost time.

I was looking at my memory card and realizing that I had a lot of pictures that didn't make their way into the blog, so I'm going to play catchup and try to get that card emptied by early February, which is when I leave on my next teaching trip

It rained last night and I took this picture early this morning, just as the sun was peeping over the horizon -- looks like the sky is on fire! We have had about 8 inches of rain this fall, which is considered a lot of rain for my part of the southern California desert.....maybe an end to the 3 year drought?

I'm going to do one or two more blog posts this morning and then start cleaning up my sewing room so that I can actually do some work!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Alex Anderson Quilt Retreats 2010 -- Session II Show & Tell (Part 1)

This year I was at each retreat session for just a day; I already knew almost everyone in Session I as most of them have been coming for almost all of the ten years we have been retreating, so there were just a couple of unfamiliar names. But Session II had many people new to me, so I apologize for not having all the names to go with the faces.

If you see yourself here without a name to credit your quilt(s), please add a comment to the blog so that we all know who you are!

Beautiful appliqued quilt from Marilyn....the quilting was awesome on this as well....

I'm trying to remember whether Judy was working on these blocks at the 2009 retreat, but that info's just not surfacing....Judy is one of three sisters who come to the retreat together.

Barbara is another of the three sisters; the one who didn't do show and share this time was Nancy.

The quilting was gorgeous from the back; it shows up pretty well in my photos, don't know about how well you will be able to see it in this smaller format.

This butterfly is on the cover of a book about quilts sewn from wedges that are cut from fabric strata with a wedge ruler. These colors on the dark background really make the quilt pop!

Aren't all of these gorgeous? Part II to come.....

Friday, December 10, 2010

Alex Anderson Quilt Retreats 2010 -- Session I Show & Tell (Part 2)

Sylvia Kenyon with her latest beauty.....

LouAnn Schlichter with her applique-on-a-pieced-background quilts....

..the bottom edge of the quilt on the right was fascinating.

One of Patti Hempen's kaleidoscope quilts, this one with Mardi Gras masks!

Two more of Patti's -- her speciality is kaleidoscopes, but every so often she surprises us with something totally different...

Lynda Neal's house quilt with intricate sequential borders. Lynda makes teensy, tinsy little pieced elements to put in her quilts. I really like that last striped border....

Sue Rapp, with the tree quilt that she started last year; with its pink trees, it was so different from everyone else's.

And I love this one -- the colors are awesome. Sue lives in Hilton Head Island SC -- do you think these colors remind her of home?

Cindy Brown's cityscape quilt; she did a super job on the perspective.

Since I'm helping to hold up the quilts, I usually get a great look at the back, but not so long a look at the front. Going through these pictures is a great way to see what I missed at the time!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Alex Anderson Quilt Retreats 2010 -- Session I Show & Tell (Part 1)

One of the events that Alex and I most look forward to at the retreats each year is Show & Tell, where we get to see the quilts that the retreaters have been working on in the past year. Some of them bring completed quilts that they had started during prior retreats and some are brand new to us. I'm especially lucky because I get to help hold the quilts so I get that up close and personal look at each one.....

Dawna loves to make basket quilts; I've probably quilted a dozen or so for her over the years. Dawna owns my local quilt store, Bolts in the Bathtub, and is one of my closest friends. This is a quilt she is giving away to a friend of hers.

If I heard this right, Barbara is the Quilts of Valor lady for southern California.

She showed two of the quilts that will be going to wounded soldiers.

Carol Anderson and her tree skirt -- that's so gorgeous! I don't think I could cut the middle out of that to put it under a tree and I think she said that she wasn't cutting it out, either....up close, the piecing was just amazing on this!

Judith shows quilts she made this year....

Carol Shaw shows off her double wedding ring -- with a sawtooth border and applique! It was quilted beautifully, too.....

Deb Stevens with her pink flower quilt -- my hands were holding the other side of this quilt and I almost didn't let go!

This is a quilt that Holly Weisberger made for her daughter -- lucky girl!!!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...