Sunday, September 27, 2009

Retreat Bags

Our Centreville Quilters Unlimited guild fall retreat is this coming weekend. We go to a semi-rustic retreat center in Winchester and sew, sew, sew for the whole weekend!! We all take lots of projects and supplies, so I'm glad to have these two GINORMOUS cool retreat bags!! This first one I just finished last weekend. My friend Linda bought the fabric for this bag a while back... for my birthday, I think??? It's about time I got it made up, huh?

I love the vintage look of the panel and I adore the bright primary colors! And boy, is this bag BIG!! It will hold lots of projects and supplies to haul to retreat! Thanks, Linda! I love it!

This big bag is my rendition of a bag a fellow CQU retreater Jean has brought to every retreat since I've been coming. She made it in a class while learning how to quilt. So I looked at it carefully and measured it and recreated it my way!

I used those cute quilter panels that I'd bought a while back but never knew what to make with them. And I had some cute fabrics with sewing notions printed on them in bright colors that went well with the panels. Both sides are made with different panels.

I used bright variegated quilting thread to quilt it. The long wooden dowels give the bag some structure and I added the 2 shoulder straps to make it easier to carry in from the car.

So, now, each day this week after work, I've got to get my retreat projects all cut out and supplies collected and packed in these bags in readiness for the retreat! Can't wait!! :-)

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

No Text Tuesday- Halloween Decor!!

I love autumn and I adore Halloween!!

Love this witch wreath!!

My witch cat and her best friend Ghostie!

Wanda Witch is still in her bathrobe and curlers!!

Love this Turning Twenty quilt!

Antique ladder with my Spinning Windows quilt!

My goofy mantle Jack!

The Barker Boys Ghost!

The Pumpkin Goblin and his Mummy!

Up on the pie safe , pumpkins pause...

Gertie Ghost and her baby!

My award winning Frog Witch!

Wilma witch and her spiderettes!

My front door Frankie!

Dem bones, dem bones...

If the shoes fit...

Spooky Goofy Jacko!

Eat your veggies!

The witchy kitchen!

My kitchen scarecrow with crows!

Love those costumed spiders!

Fridge guardian witch!

Mt most favorite cookie jar!

That baker's rack is cookin'!

Scary, scary! Screamie, Screamie!

Happy, Happy Halloweenie!!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Bee Day De-Stressing!!

Yesterday was our September Bee Day at Lorraine's house. Here we are in her dining room. Suzanne is standing and rotary cutting a cool shaggy quilt she and her grandson Evan are making together. The front will be made of flannel in fun "boy" colors. The back is being made of denim squares cut from Evan's father's old jeans and his grandfather's old jeans. How cool is that! A denim memory quilt that he is helping to make! And it's a very "green" idea- recycling those old denim jeans! Suzanne and her husband just got back from a trip to Russia. She brought us gifts, too. We got beautiful flannel fabrics and we each got a different set of Russian matryoshka nesting dolls. I am suddenly into owls and so mine was a set of nesting grey owls. Very cool!

Linda is sitting at the table and is she sewing at our bee day???????? NOPE! She is waaaaay too dedicated to her first grade class. She brought no sewing to do but a bag full of school paperwork and material preparation for her students. Needless to say, as we all work at different jobs in the same school system, we do allot of chatting, whining, venting, etc... about work at bee! And the beginning of the new school year is the most stressful time, so we had lots to "discuss"!!

And here's Lorraine, whose lovely house we met at, sewing down the binding on a gorgeous black, white and red quilt she made for her daughter. Snickers is snoozing on the quilt at her feet. Lorraine fussed waaaaay too much for our lunch. It was soooooooo delicious. She made us grilled apple pecan salad with homemade dressing and warm turkey, cheese and cranberry sandwiches on cinnamon swirl bread... YUMMMMMMMMMMMMM! And if that wasn't enough, she made homemade carrot cake cupcakes for dessert. YIKES! Bee next month is at my I gotta start thinking of a fantastic menu now!!!

Today my husband and my older son and his girlfriend all went to the Bull run wine festival. The weather was perfect- cool and sunny. We tasted wonderful wines and had such fun checking out the different booths. My husband and I went home early so we could watch the Jets game at 1:00pm. Go JETS! They beat the Patriots! I spent the afternoon putting out all my Halloween decorations. That takes me about 4 hours. I'll be doing a bit of tweaking tomorrow and then I'll take photos and post them! Well, I'm bushed!! Time to relax a bit before the work week begins again in the morning! Take care!!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Friendship Bag Swap

I finished my friendship swap bag and it is winging it's way to my secret swap partner. I hope she likes it! She said she likes polka dots and so I put some in! I love these bright happy plaids in hot summery colors.

I love the variegated thread I used to quilt it! It was in shades of purple, lime green, orange and pink.

I free-motioned loopy flowers in the pink squares and leaves in the green squares.

I sewed little green buttons in the centers of the flowers.

I did a rounded edged zig-zag stitch to quilt the purple polka dotted bands and handles.

I filled the bag with some pretty fat quarters and rickrack. She should get it soon!

Sew, what's next ?? I want to use some fall flannel in my stash to make a shaggy quilt! TTFN! :-)

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Summer Mini-Quilt Swap

I finished my "Good Old Summertime" Mini-Quilt Swap quilt for my secret partner. It's on the way in the mail to her right now, along with some pretty fat quarters and a "Purple Thang"- a favorite tool of mine. I hope she likes it. It was really fun to make. I've made beach art quilts before and have taught it at the quilt shop. But I've never made one that is square before.

I used all batiks and some lace for the surf foam at the bottom and added a real seashell, too.

At the top, in the sky, I also added some little white seagulls amongst the clouds.

I quilted the water with a shiny metallic thread in silver and blues in smooth wavy lines.

I quilted the sky in light blue thread and the sand at the bottom in goldish tan thread.

I signed the back along the quilting lines and bound it with a mottled darker batik. So that swap is fulfilled now and on to the next!! I'm working on the Friendship Bag Swap tomorrow!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Cool Block Bag Design

I've had this Indygo Junction purse pattern for a while now. It's called "Building Block Bag". My son's girlfriend Susan is just getting into sewing again. She and I made a purse a few weeks back and she enjoyed the process. So last weekend we made this one. She made hers in beige and green toile- she made the pieced block version like the red one in the pattern photo. I made mine in black and white prints. We both made the smaller version.

I forgot to take a photo of hers, but here is mine! I am used to rectangular shaped bags and this one is a square on the bottom... so have not yet used it. I use a Porta Purse insert in my purses instead of a wallet. So I'm not sure how it will stay sitting up in a square bag.

It is a really interesting process to put this purse together. Like a puzzle!

It's hard to describe how it goes together so I am trying to show you different views of it!

The inside is, as I said earlier, a square. I love that fabric I used for the lining. It starts with big black polka dots on one selvage and progresses to tiny black dots on the other selvage.

Aren't these black and white prints so awesome!

They make up so crisp looking!!

My husband and I are watching the Florida State vs University of Miami college football game as I write this. We both graduated from FSU and may eventually retire back in the Tallahassee area. That won't happen until my younger son Anthony is finished with grad school at Va Tech... another year or so, at least. I can't wait to retire from education! I am beginning my 32nd year!

Tomorrow is the first day back to school for kids here in Fairfax county in northern Virginia. So, gridlock traffic is on the menu for tomorrow morning. Sigh...