Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Christmas Gifts and Cup Cakes

Now that Christmas is over and presents have been given, I can show you the table topper I made for my sister. I did use a pattern from Kim Diehl called "Old Fashioned Hospitality," which is in her book called "Simple Comforts." I made it for my sister to use as a table topper. Since the finished size of the original quilt was too large for my sister's table, I omitted the outside borders (which I loved, by the way) to cut the size of the quilt down to around 40" square. The original quilt is more like 60" X 60". My sister moved from New England to Tennessee; she loves the New England symbol of welcome...the pineapple.
The center of the quilt is pieced; I used fusible applique to add the pieces. The vines were a real pain to do. Placement was really difficult and making all that bias wasn't much fun. HOWEVER, my sister was pleased with the result and so was I.

These are some closeups of the machine quilting done on my Janome 6500. The quilt is VERY densely quilted (as are most of the quilts I machine quilt). I used some freehand feathers I learned in my class with Sharon Shamber. 
I did get a bit too close to the edge of the quilt with those feathers.
Instead of using a fused fabric for the small dark circles, I made yoyos. I like the texture the yoyos add to the piece.
Today, I finished another cupcake pincushion. The pattern is from Pieceful Designs ( called "With a Cherry on Top." These are so much fun to make. The one from my previous post was given as a Christmas gift to a quilting friend. This one is all mine!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Ain't It Sweet?

I actually have gotten a few things done in the past week or so. Here's proof...

I made a sweet little cupcake pin cushion from Pieceful Designs ( called "With a Cherry on Top." I used embroidery and beads to decorate it.
I also made eight little picture holders called "Wee Memories" from the "Quilting Arts Gifts Holiday 2010" issue. I followed directions in an article by Melanie Testa. Melanie suggests that we "tuck little photos of memorable moments inside." These little gems turn out to be about the size of a match book cover. Each will hold two small pictures. I think they'd be really nice to tuck away in a purse or pocket to pull out whenever I might need a pick-me-up.
No, Lisa Kudrow and Patricia Clarkson are not my close friends. I don't have MY "memorable moments" cropped to the proper size yet!
I've made some "Stack and Whack" Christmas cookies. One batch started as Christmas tree cookies; the other batch started as reindeer cookies.

I've also been busy looking through my new book by Jane Dunnewold. Did I mention I get to take a class from her in January?
It seems I also spend quite a bit of time observing the birds in my yard; I sure enjoy that. We've had some pretty nasty weather here in southern Indiana this past week. First, we had snow; then we had ice on top of that. I recently purchased a bird bath heater to keep the bird bath water from freezing. Since then my birds have a virtual bird spa in my back yard. I took this picture of a couple of birds enjoying the "spa" this afternoon. (Notice the water that has "slopped" over the edge from the little bird on the left. The one on the right was just venturing in.)
Other birds spent their afternoon eating at the "buffet" and...
slipping on the ice!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Exciting Information

I'm sorry it has been so long since I last posted a new blog entry. I am going to try to be better about it. I'm still dealing with some personal issues...among other things, I just lost a friend to brain cancer. However, I am going to be concentrating on the wonderful things in my life. (There are many.) 

First, you may have noticed the "fire" logo to the right. That is a link to another blog to which I belong. I'm joining eight artists on an "artistic voyage" in the new year. We'd like you to come along on this journey with us. Each month (starting in January) we will be working on a different technique. We will be working on shibori during the month of January. The supply list is on the site now, and the instructions (or where to get the instructions) will be posted in January. The nine of us will be blogging about our experiences with the technique along with pictures of our work. I'm SO excited to be a part of this endeavor. I'm planning on learning about a lot of new tools to put in my surface design arsenal, and you can too. Hop on over to the blog by clicking on the logo and become a "Follower." Be ready to begin with us in January. I'm hoping to hear about your experiences too.

Another tidbit is that LAFTA (Louisville Area Fiber and Textile Artists) is having a juried exhibit at the Jewish Community Center of Louisville. Here is the information. (I'm also placing the information in my "Upcoming Quilting/Fiber Arts Events" to the right, so it will be easy for you to find.) You might also be interested in checking out the new LAFTA website at

Dates of LAFTA Show

January 16, 2011 Opening of show
January 30, 2011 Opening reception, 2-4 pm
February 22, 2011 Closing date of the show

Jewish Community Center
3600 Dutchmans Lane
Louisville, KY 40205
(502) 459-0660

Patio Gallery Hours
Sunday: 9 a.m.-6 p.m.
Monday - Thursday: 8:30 a.m.-9 p.m.
Friday: 8:30 a.m.-7 p.m.
Saturday: CLOSED
This will be a great exhibit; don't miss it!
Also, for those of you who are interested...The Quilt Show ( is making a special offer. This is what they have to say...

"To kick off the holiday season, TQS is unlocking your Basic Membership through December 31, 2010. That's right, you can be a Free Star Member for December. You'll have access to all the December shows and every class in the Classrooms, as well as the Daily Blog, Forums, Newsletters, and don't forget Weekend Fun contests. Log in today and start enjoying your FREE Star Membership."

This is a really good deal. You have access to free projects and lots of other fun stuff. Check it out.

Be sure to let me know if you decide to follow the "and Then We Set It On Fire" blog. It should be lots of fun (and even more fun if you do it with me).