Wednesday, March 31

Crazy Quilting Demonstration

I'm doing a little "catch-up" here so I must take you back to last Thursday...........when our Scott County Crazy Quilter's Group shared a demonstration and projects at the Shakopee Library (MN). We normally meet on the fourth Thursday of the month at the Scott County Historical Society (also in Shakopee) but this night we were asked to do a demo at the Library as part of a program series celebrating Women's History month. Grant monies provided the library the opportunity to engage quilters and needle artists to demonstrate their craft. Our group shared our love of handwork and some "hands-on" opportunities to stitch a crazy quilt block. It was a fun evening that started with a little "show and tell" exhibit that showed visitors examples of our Crazy Quilting projects.................

We have two large plastic tubs filled with fabrics, trims, threads and more that guests could rummage through and choose their own treasures to stitch into a block. I provided muslin squares for Carol, Dolly and Darlene who were joining us for the first time. With a quick demonstration of how to start a block, they were soon stitching away on their very own block. Mina is also new and happened to have her stitching in the car, so brought it in and joined us. This is the mark of a dedicated stitcher! On the far right is Lois. She rarely misses a meeting. At 95 she is still "stitching strong" although this night she was crocheting. :-)

Since our group was paid to do this demo we are looking at possibly purchasing some crazy quilting books for the reference library at the Historical Society or some other item, maybe a speaker or ........ a party! Nah, probably not, as we already sort of "party" when we are stitching together.
Laura is working on a 6 1/2" block that will be for a donation quilt project for "The*Landing" a living history site in Shakopee. Isn't that purple fabric gorgeous? We are working on blocks that will go into a quilt for the bed in the Victorian home on the site. If you are interested in crazy quilting and you live nearby and would like to join our group just e-mail me or leave a comment and I'll send you the info. Also, if you enjoy crazy quilting and would like to make a block for our project we would love to add it to our quilt project. Again, just leave a comment and an e-mail link so I can contact you.

While we started our group with crazy quilting, we sometimes do other work, too..........Delores is doing some handquilting and Carol is cross-stitching a baby blanket. The only thing you can't do at our meetings is use a sewing machine. It's all about handwork in our group. :-) That stack of crazy quilt blocks in the photo are some of the ones that will go into the quilt for The Landing project.
The thing I love about crazy quilting is that there are simply no rules at all. You stitch what you like and embellish the blocks as much or as little as you wish. We have a great time stitching together and if you want to join the fun, you are always welcome!!
There is still more quilting fun to share about the little quilt show in Belle Plaine. I'll get to that on Friday. All for now........
Sandi

Tuesday, March 30

Assisting the Easter Bunny!

Last year I volunteered to do a little Easter basket project at our church - St. Paul's UCC - that would be donated to our local Foodshelf. It went so well, that I said I would do it again this year. To read about last year's adventure, you can go here.
As I've mentioned a couple of times recently........while the Good Eggs Giveaway and the "hop down the bunny trail" was going on, I was assisting the Easter Bunny. That's right, just assisting. He does exist so I don't want any children out there to think I'm trying to take his place. I'm just helping out a bit along with a whole lot of folks from my church. This project is so simple but is so appreciated by the staff at the Food Shelf and those that receive the baskets. It starts simply enough...........

Congregation members brought baskets and goodies and treats and toys................and so last Wednesday afternoon, I started to assemble it all into filled baskets. I set out all the baskets that were collected........thirty-eight of them!!

And then there were some Easter themed paper gift bags - eighteen of them!

And then I laid out all the goodies, treats and toys..................and began to consider what would go in each basket or bag.

Everything always seems to come out just right when I do some of these projects. There were several bags of Easter grass donated and it was exactly the right amount for all the baskets.

There was a toy or gift item for each basket and full bags of jelly beans or big chocolate bunnies for each basket. And there were oodles of little Snickers bars and Skittles and stuff so every basket and bag got several of those. And then there were the eggs...............

lots and lots of eggs, so I sat down and started filling the eggs with little chocolate bunnies and Hershey's chocolate eggs. Every basket and bag got 4 to 5 candy filled eggs! Everything worked out so evenly!

And here are the baskets all filled and ready to be bagged and delivered. I was tired at this point so I decided to come back on Friday to put each basket in a separate bag.

I have to be honest and tell you that I really wanted this little pink lamb. I thought it was just as cute as could be and since I am momma shepherd to my Wooly Buddies group, it would have been fun to take this little sweetie home with me. I did not do that.................

If you look at the back of this photo, you can see the little sweetie and she is on her way with all the other baskets to be delivered to the Food Shelf in nearby Gaylord, MN. Just like last year, the staff was thrilled to receive the baskets. Food Shelf use is up significantly and items such as these are a bonus and perhaps a luxury.........but to a child on Easter morning they are a necessity. The candy-filled baskets and bags will bring a smile to many a child!
Now, all I did was assemble the baskets, but it brought me much joy to do this. I didn't do it alone because even though our church is small, so many shared so much and soon it was a great big thing!! When I loaded all those baskets and bags in my car, they filled the entire trunk area of my car and part of the back seat!! The abundance of the project, reminded me of an old Swedish saying that goes something like this, “Joy shared is Joy doubled”. Definitely!!! We enjoyed sharing and plan to do this again next year. Thanks to this project, I now feel that I have earned the title "Certified Easter Bunny Assistant" or CEBA for short. ;-) You can, too, just by copying this idea. This is one time when nobody is going to mind if you do a little copying.
Oh, and one more basket related item..........The basket in this photo is actually a large wicker basket from a baby bassinett. It was one my mother bought at auction, gave to my daughter, who then passed it to me because I can never throw anything away. LOL! There is always a use for everything.
SO, when Pastor Brigit called in early March and asked if I had a large basket that she could use at church for March FoodShare month, I answered "Oh, yes, I have a really big basket!" This is just some of the food that was collected but all totaled the basket held 72 pounds of donated items that also went to the Food Shelf with the Easter baskets. They weighed 50 pounds thanks to all that chocolate! All food is weighed as it comes in and entered in a log book. You get a receipt and a thank you before you walk out the door!
This post has nothing to do with quilting or stitching but it has everything to do with well-being. I enjoy volunteering and if I couldn't share then the quilting and stitching would have no meaning.
In between assisting the Easter Bunny, I was also doing some library quilt program events so maybe I'll get to that in my next post. Never a boring moment but that's all for now.
Sandi
P.S. And when I get through with all the Easter events, I'm going to tell you all about my machine quilting experience at Heidi's retreat. It was "sew" cool! More on that right after Easter. :-)

OPAM finishes for March!

I am checking off items on my "to do" list and realized I better get hoppin' and post the finished projects for the OPAM challenge. I posted a photo of these pillows earlier this month and said I'd finish them and I did. I made them a priority when I was at Heidi's retreat a couple of weeks ago. I am having some fun creating these sort of "collage" pages. I photographed front and back so you can see that they are not pinned together just so I can call them "finished". LOL!
The green fabric in the photos above did not want to photograph quite right. The true color of the green is shown in the photo that shows the back of the pillow.

The pink and white polka dot I used in this pillow is some vintage stuff I've had and thought it was perfect for this pillow.
And.......I have a bonus project! I also took these two panels to the retreat that were for a bag made from Nanette's "Mixed Bag" pattern. I was sure I could finish it up but all I got done was cutting the trim for the top of the bag. Yesterday, after I got home from assisting the Easter Bunny, I decided I was going to finish it, and "sew" I did!! Please note that I didn't quite make it right, or at least according to the pattern directions. I've made the bag before and did it wrong then, too, but I liked the effect so did it again. LOL! Nanette sewed the lining seperately but I made the pieced panel, then hand-quilted it to a lining fabric and sewed those two pieces together. To cover my seams on the inside, I cut bias strips and sewed them over the seam. It was a bit time-consuming but I like the look when I peek inside the bag. I bought wicker handles on clearance at JoAnn's quite some time ago and they were perfect for this 30's reproduction print bag. It's a project bag for some hand-work that I want to take along to places this summer.


It feels so good to finish projects!! Now, in my next post I really will tell you about my Easter Bunny project............... but first I have to do some real life stuff and finish cleaning the bathrooms...........housework never ends, it just waits patiently to be done. :-)

Sandi

Monday, March 29

The "Hoppy" Bunny

When I was a kid, I loved paper dolls. I also loved fabric, glue, glitter, lace and trims, buttons, and anything one could use to be creative!! My mother and dad encouraged our creativity. They appreciated everything we made whether we were a kid making crafts and projects or an adult enjoying our hobbies. It was only natural to make things so in 2004, instead of buying an Easter card, I made this one for my mom and dad. I used it for the "Bunny Button" for the Good Eggs Giveaway that ended yesterday. I promised I would share the pattern.......
And so, here is the "Hoppy" (which means "Happy" in bunny-talk) Bunny and he or she is in dire need of clothes. You can take this bunny pattern and use it to create a card for some-bunny that you love...............

or......you can print it on cardstock and let your kids or grandkids have some "paper-bunny" fun!
There is a page of outfits for a bunny named Henrietta Hoppy and she also has her own Easter basket complete with a brand-new baby chick!

There is a page of outfits for a bunny named Henry Hoppy and he also has his own Easter basket but he is looking forward to munching on that chocolate Easter bunny!

All you have to do is right click on each image and save to your computer and then print the page. I'll be posting these patterns to my Seasons BOM Yahoo group where I can post them as PDF files. Sorry, but Blogger doesn't have an upload for PDF's. If you are interested in joining the group, just click on the Redwork Angel button on the sidebar and it will take you to the "join this group" page.
I have been actively working as a Certified Easter Bunny Assistant the past few days and will post photos of that activity in my next post. :-)
Have fun with the "Hoppy" bunny!
Sandi


And the winner is......

Gerry at SewingSouthpaw!!!!! She has a lovely blog and does some amazing crazy quilting!! Be sure to take a peek at the pictures of her work. She is quite excited to have won and has sent me her address so her package will go in the mail today!
Thank you to all of you that entered my giveaway and all the giveaways of the blogs that participated in the "hop down the bunny trail to so many GOOD EGGS!!!" It was just a fun little way to celebrate the arrival of Spring, the joy of friendship and the creative spirit that we all share.
I have one more thing to share for my giveaway. I am going to post the pattern for the little bunny that is on the blog button that I created for the hop. I'll post it later today but I am working as an assistant to the Easter Bunny this afternoon and must leave now or ...like the White Rabbit....I will be late! I'll tell you "what's up, Doc" when I return later today and get that pattern posted. Til then.........Have a great day!
Sandi

Sunday, March 28

Only a few more hours left to "hop down the bunny trail"....

That's right! If you haven't visited all the Good Eggs that I gathered for this little "hop down the bunny trail", then quickly get to hoppin'!! Each blogger has set their own time for when their giveaway will close, so check each blog for prizes and drawing times. After each blog posts their winning name, I will also post it at the Hoppin'GoodEggs blog. Check it out for the full list of blogs that are participating in the "hop down the bunny trail". :-)
Sandi
P.S. To enter my drawing you must leave a comment on my giveaway post by 10:00 p.m. CST today (Sunday)......go here to leave your name (be sure to leave a link or your e-mail address).

EDIT! The winner has been drawn and when I get a reply, I will announce the name!

Wednesday, March 24

It's time to "Hop Down the Bunny Trail"!!!

That's right, the time has come!! Spring is officially here in Minnesota and I am ready to celebrate! Let the "Hop Down the Bunny Trail to the Good Eggs" begin!!!

I’ve been planning this little “Good Eggs” giveaway for some time. My little giveaway offering is in the photo above. I have included a little bit of everything from a bunny who doesn't want to let go of his carrot full of Reese's Pieces to a basket that holds a spring charm pack and a Chocolate bunny. There is also a vintage-look hanky panel that you can use for a table runner or a pillow project and a card of bright, springy buttons, too. I added some little cookie cutters so you can bake up some fun with the kids or grandkids and there are plenty of other treats if you don't want to bake!


This little "hop" is really a celebration of friendship and the sharing of our creative talents. To gather this “basketful of Good Eggs” that you'll be visiting, I sent out an e-mail to some of my blogging friends and asked if they would like to join me in a little “hop”. I have "known" some of these bloggers for almost two years and others have joined the "hop" just in the last couple of weeks, so I am just "getting to know them"! I absolutely love the paths that blogging has led me down and thought it would be fun to host a “hop down the bunny trail” to visit some of the bloggers that have encouraged, inspired, supported or shared tips about how to blog and maneuver in Blogland. We also share about family life, our creative endeavors and the weather. We offer many different projects and topics on our blogs, we are from all around the world and it's just all great fun!

I know that you are anxious to start "hoppin' down that bunny trail", so here is the complete list of all the blogs that are participating in the hop. You will also find them at this link....... HoppinGoodEggs !!! Please note that there are a couple of blogs that will not be posting their giveaway until Thursday so check back later if you visit today and their giveaway is not posted. Each blogger will have their own instructions for what to do to enter their giveaway. Take time to read their post and then........go “hoppin’ down the bunny trail” to visit the next "Good Egg". You are going to find lots of spring fun!


To enter my giveaway (shown above), you must leave a comment on this post with your name and either a link to your blog or your e-mail address. This giveaway is open to bloggers and non-bloggers. I would love to hear who has been a "Good Egg" to you, so please share if you'd like. Comments for my giveaway will close at 10:00 p.m. CST on Sunday, March 28. Winner will be announced at noon Monday, March 29th. You'll want to stop back that day because I have a little pattern I will make available to all of you. Now, go and leave your comment and then go "hoppin' down that bunny trail" and visit all those Good Eggs!

Enjoy!!!

Sandi

Tuesday, March 23

Are you ready to hop?!!

It's getting close to time to go "hoppin' down that bunny trail" and a visit to a lot of "Good Eggs". This little bunny is ready to go and is patiently waiting for me to share the list of all the bloggers that will participate in the hop.

I'll be back shortly to add that list right here and then you can see who you will want to visit in the next few days! ............

And here it is.............

A Corgi to Quilt By

A Legacy of Stitches

A Little of This and a Little of Pat

Art by Gene Black

Bejeweled Quilts

Cathron Country
Cherry Pie

Cleary's Haven

Cootie Bug 2

Create-with-Joy

Dancing Thru Threads

Debi Quilts

Featherstone Quiltworks

Hooked on Needles

Juliet's Bears

Krpe & Zakrpe

My Quilting Room

Nana B Follows Nana T

Needled Mom

Nomes's Brag-a-Long

Oodles of Noodles

Pat Sloan

Pat's Pattering

Patches and Pieces

Poems My Way

Polka Dot Pineapple

Red Geranium Cottage

Splitting Stitches

Stitches-n-Stuff

The Noble Wife

That's the complete list. Each blog is unique and has a little something special to share so please visit all of them as you never know what you may find or who you may meet!!! The "hop" does not begin until tomorrow, Wednesday, March 24th so check back after 6:00 a.m. CST and you will find the LIVE link to the site where you can link to all the blogs listed above. It will be great fun I'm sure, so please stop back then!!

Till then, have a good night and sweet dreams of "hoppin' down that bunny trail"!!

Sandi

Monday, March 22

The proof is in the pictures..........

that we all had a really good time at Heidi Kaisand's "Spring into Action" retreat. She pampered us with lovely gifts like those in the photo below. When we arrived on Friday evening, there was a basket filled with goodies for each of us and a real daisy in the cutest little vase. Everyone got busy sewing almost as soon as they arrived and it was so much fun to meet so many new quilters from near and far! We enjoyed homemade breads, cheese, fresh veggies and goodies for our Friday evening supper. And then we continued to sew..........

On Saturday morning there was a "Springtime" pincushion sitting by each of our sewing machines. Lunch was a "bag lunch" from "The Machine Shed" which is the restaurant next door to Comfort Inn and Suites where the retreat was held (and also right next to Living*History*Farms). We all received a kit from Heidi for a tablerunner and I'm going to share that project in a seperate post. :-) Sewing continued after lunch and then there was an afternoon snack of popcorn and more sewing. Dinner was a delicious chicken breast and broasted potatoes with salad and bread and..........are ya hungry yet? :-) There were fabric doorprizes right after dinner and I have plans for the fabric I won, so that's another post I can do. Then I think Heidi's gift of copies of American Patchwork Quilting magazine came next. She made personalized luggage tags for each of us and slipped them over the rolled up issues of APQ. The goodies just kept coming. I mean really good, goodies...........Oreo bon-bons. I'm not sure that's what they were really called but they were made with oreos and then covered with white chocolate and sprinkles. Oh, my gosh, were they good! There was a lot of sewing, laughing, chatting, and projects completed on Sunday and then we woke to another gift! Each of us found a covered notebook at our machines on Sunday morning! Oh, yes, we were pampered and I loved every minute of it. I needed a vacation after this long winter and Heidi's retreat was just the ticket! And to remember the weekend......as if I would forget it!.........I bought one of Heidi's Hen and Chicks charms. :-)

Now, it's time to share photos of some of the sewing fun that we enjoyed. You all know that I came prepared to sew springy things. I packed my project bag with lots of pink and green and got to the sewing fun almost immediately! This picture sums up my Friday evening.........

And by late Friday night.......or early Saturday morning, I had completed my quilt top!


Across the table from me was my sewing buddy, Sue. We had tried once before to come to Heidi's retreat but family events didn't work out so we couldn't make it. This time, though, we booked our space last fall and there was nothing that was going to keep us from this fun weekend! We had such a good time that we are still smiling about it two days later. :-)




Smiles were on a lot of our faces as one of the neat aspects of Heidi's retreat was that there was a Millennium long-arm quilting machine set up in the room across the hall from the sewing room. We all had the opportunity to learn about machine quilting and then actually quilt our projects!!! How cool is that?!!!

In the photo above, DawnCavanaugh is helping Donna Jo (left) and Melissa (right) to position Melissa's quilt on the Millennium. The machine quilting opportunity that we all enjoyed was such a gift that I'm going to share more on this in a seperate post next week. It will be the first post I do after my Good Eggs/Bunny Hop ends. It was all so interesting that I just need to share it later when I have more time. There were lots of projects quilted so I'll share those then. In the meantime, here are a few more photos from the retreat...........

Deb Peterson, from Illinois (owner of QuiltersGeneralStore ), put the finishing touches on this quilt top on Saturday afternoon.

Lynne Hagmeier is showing retreat guests the technique for her new design that will be at Spring Quilt Market. Lynne's website is here and her blog is here.

And here is Heidi with a lovely quilt top she finished for here son. Amidst all the prep and hosting, she completed this top and I am just amazed at her energy! Double-click on the photo so you can see the cute print that she used in this.

This is Cathy Gies and she is admiring her finished blocks. She is working on Heidi's "Echo" quilt pattern (you'll find it on her blog). Cathy had a great sense of humor. She made us laugh and made us sing. It was great fun! I'm her "new best friend" as she was coveting a bag I brought that I made from Nanette's pattern last fall. She tried to convince me to give it to her but I couldn't part with the bag. I did tell her that "you never know what might come in the mail"..........so she gave me her address. :-) And since a lot of you get packages in the mail from me, well, Cathy may yet get a bag!

There's just one more picture to share right now....

I finished my top on Friday night and on Sunday, I machine quilted it with help from Dawn. So what did I do on Saturday?..............I stitched up these pillows! I brought some finished tulip blocks with me and fabrics so I could make these for my quilty bedrooms. The pink one will go in my green quilty bedroom and the green pillow goes in the pink quilty bedroom. I'll also share more on these pillows, plus I'll give you the pattern for the tulip in a post on March 30th. These tulip blocks have been "planted" in my "to do" pile since 2003. I think it was about time they "blossomed" into finished projects!!


Sending out a big THANK YOU to Heidi for a lovely retreat!! It was wonderful!


Sandi

It was "sew" much fun!

That's right, Heidi's Hen and Chicks Spring Retreat was "sew" much fun that I am still smiling!! My friend, Sue, and I were so relaxed and sewed and enjoyed meeting so many new quilting friends and ......well, it was just wonderful! I have some pictures to share of the "pampering" that we received and some of the projects that were made. There will also be proof that I actually completed some projects but the photos will have to wait til Tuesday to be posted. I'm a nightowl but I stayed up later than usual on Saturday night and the lack of sleep has finally caught up with me. If you want a peek at the goodies and projects at Heidi's retreat, just click here. :-)
Just one more thing before I start singing "Good-night Irene" and head off to bed......... I'm going to be posting the info on the Good Eggs Giveaway and Hoppin' Down the Bunny Trail at 6:00 p.m. CST on Tuesday. Then on Wednesday, you can start hoppin' down the trail of blogs and have some spring fun!

Sandi

Friday, March 19

Oh, Happy Day!!

That's a song from the '50's that I used to plunk out on my Grandma's piano. I am humming it right now because yes, today is a happy day. Bags are packed and I am off to my favorite state, Iowa, and a great quilting retreat! The whole weekend will be a happy weekend as spring arrives on Saturday and it's also National Quilting Day! I will be celebrating in an appropriate manner .......... I'll be sewing!

You've seen the fabrics in this photo before but now they are almost ready to be stitched into a quilt. This is a Quilt*A*Long project that Dana of Old*Red*Barn shared on her blog last summer. You sew 2-1/2" strips together and then cut them into square blocks. All the strips are sewn together.....14 strips total and each set of sewn strips yields three blocks for a total of 42 blocks. Gee and I thought I couldn't do math!! So, anyway, the next time you see these fabrics they will be a fully assembled quilt top and ready to be quilted. There's actually a possibility it will get quilted this weekend. You'll find out when I return next week. Til then.........Have a Happy Spring and Sewing Weekend!
Sandi

P.S. Next Wednesday is the start of "Good Eggs Hoppin' Down the Bunny Trail Giveaway." My post on Tuesday will tell you the story and the link will be posted that will take you "hoppin' down that bunny trail to some fun Giveaways and great blogs!"

Wednesday, March 17

Belated greetings for a ............


I sat down for a cup of tea mid-afternoon and enjoyed browsing through some books that made me feel like I was in Ireland. Just go here to see if one might be of interest to you. :-)
Sandi

Packed and ready to go.........

My project bag is packed for the retreat.....................


It's filled with lots of pinks and greens and springy fabrics, some tulip blocks to work on and a couple of show and tell pieces. I need to add the blocks that I made last summer from all those pinks and greens and a few accessories and I am ready to go. One has to have their priorities in order, you know, and so packing this project bag for the retreat was more important than the bag that will hold my clothes. :-) Today, I'll pack my clothing bag which is slightly smaller than my project bag. Remember, fabric is more important than what I need to wear. :-) Plus, I am going for comfort this weekend, so I'll just need a couple pair of slacks, sweaters, socks, etc. and, of course, toothpaste and all that stuff. Anything I forget for that bag can be bought at Target. I am leaving all day Thursday to double-check the project bag so I don't leave some necessary fabric or tool on my sewing table. If I sound like I'm a little overly anxious and a bit too organized, well..........it's because I am really in need of a vacation and this is going to be a really fun weekend so I want to be prepared!

While I'm away, poor Kaiser will have to stay home with Steve and will probably mope around all weekend wondering where I'm at. I made him a new flannel blanket so he's certainly not forgotten. Plus I'll leave him some treats so he'll think he's at a doggie retreat! :-) And then when I get home, he'll act like he hasn't seen me in months, just like all dogs do when their owners go away and then come home. We should all be so happy to see each other, right?! LOL!

Re: the rising waters of the Minnesota River........the ice dam is breaking up but water is still rising. Our area is not going to get the worst of the flooding. No, it's the areas along the Red River who are the ones worrying now about how high the water will go. Unfortunately, spring flooding is a part of living near the river and it's not pretty. Once it is over and spring is in full bloom, the beauty of the river will return again. It's just a little tough getting through the days until that time comes............

Sandi

Tuesday, March 16

Rising water.........

This post has nothing to do with quilting or stitching. It's all about rising water on the Minnesota River. I had to go to the post office this morning, so I took my camera along to take a couple of pictures of the river. I drove to a small spot where you can park and look back at the bridge so I could get a feel for just how high the water is. I don't have a "before" picture but this is high and is nearing flood stage.

The river has risen rapidly in the past two days because there is an ice and debris jam just a half mile upstream. The Minnesota River flows north out of Henderson. That's right......north. And from Henderson, it continues to flow north to cities and towns in the southwest suburbs of Minneapolis like Belle Plaine, Jordan, Shakopee and Savage.

Right now, there is water getting through, but there's a lot of water that can't get through because of the ice and debris jam. What you see in the photo above is not snow on the river, but huge junks of ice and lots of tree trunks and other debris that have ended up in the river due to our rapid spring melt.
The last report I heard tonight said that the ice and debris jam is almost two miles long. I grew up in a river town, so I've seen ice jams before. Have never seen one quite like this one. It's kind of a waiting game now. I'll keep you posted. That Mother Nature is really making spring interesting.
Sandi

Monday, March 15

Winner of the Long-Legged Bunny is.......

......... Barb at A*Corgi*to*Quilt*By !!!! Yes, Barb is going to get this long-legged bunny and his armload of Jelly Beans in tasty flavors of Lemonade, Key Lime Pie, and Berry Smooth. Now some of you may remember that if the winner correctly guessed the name of the long-legged bunny, that they would also receive some really good chocolate. Well, Barb didn't have the correct name for the bunny although in her comment she did come up with the most appropriate name as she wrote....... "I love your bunny .... and the jelly beans are my favorites... and my guess for your bunny's name is "Long Legs". " Yep, that was a very good name but the bunny's name is "Pinky" and only one reader got that right. It was Mary Grace at Hooked*On*Needles !!! She picked up on those pink ears right away and that was what did it for me, too. I bought the first bunny at the Dollar Store so I decided she needed some "bunny love", too, and decided I'd part with another buck and treat Mary Grace to a bunny, too. And when she sends me her favorite chocolate, I'll get Pinky in the mail to her and send "Long Legs" - who has been rechristened with that new name - off to Barb.
This little giveaway was just a teaser for the upcoming "Good Eggs Giveaway" and our "Hop down the Bunny Trail". This is the last day to join this blog hop so if you are a blogger that would like to share a little something springy in a giveaway, go here for the details. I need to receive an e-mail by the end of this day so that I can prepare the final list of blogs that you all can "hop to" and visit next week. It's going to be sooooo much fun!
Sandi

Rulers to quilt by.....

Last Wednesday, when I finished teaching my class at Firefly, I packed up and then was at the register paying for some fabric when in walked my friend, Susan. I hadn't seen her in months and was thrilled to catch up on "what's new". And she really had some "what's new" to share! She has developed a couple of great rulers/tools that you might just be interested in learning about. I'm going to give you a little info on them and will share a link to sites where they can be purchased.

This first one is a folding ruler that is for cutting bias binding. It's called the "SIMPLI-EZ Bias Ruler" TM by Susan Brown and is available at http://www.simplicity.com/ . In the photo below, you can see the ruler at full length in the top half of the photo and then folded up and ready to store or take to a retreat. :-)

Susan apologized for her wrinkly sample swatch but I barely noticed as I was more interested in the ruler. And unfortunately, my camera battery started to die and so I got no more pictures. What I could have shown you with the next photo was how the ruler allows you to cut exactly at the spot where you need to sew sections of your bias binding together. If you are a quilter, you know what I am talking about.
The next tool is just that.......a tool so I probably shouldn't have referred to it as a ruler. This tool enhances the ruler that you see above and it is called "The Binding Tool". You can find it at http://www.quiltersmerc.com/ .

Complete directions are written on the tool so it makes it very easy to use. I'll try to summarize the steps as Susan demonstrated..........
In the photo below Susan is showing that you will leave a 12" opening between your binding "tails", which need to be 10" on each side.

In these next two photos, you can see that Susan is marking and measuring. The directions are on the tool so I am not going to type them here.

In these next two photos, Susan is demonstrating that she would cut along the end of this angle on the tool. She does it on both binding "tails".


When the pieces are cut, she brings them together and will stitch the two pieces and they become a perfect continuous piece of binding.

I realize that my photos may not make this really clear but trust me........the Binding Tool really works. My friend, Carol, has one and says it works great. I haven't used mine yet because the two quilts I have that are in need of binding are in my "to do" stack of projects. :-) I did cut some binding for a project and I love that folding ruler.

Susan will be at the AQS Show in Lancaster, PA at the end of the month, so if you happen to be there look for her at Quilter's Mercantile booth.

In the weather department here in Minnesota.........we hit a record high of 64 degrees today and I threw open the window and let the breeze bring in some fresh air. Our snow is melting so rapidly that what was still almost two feet of snow on the ground a few days ago is now just mounds of it at the end of driveways and along the curbs. There is water everywhere and the sound of it running down the street and into the street drains is like listening to a little creek in the woods. That is if there was a creek in our woods. All this water and all this melting is causing rising river levels and now an ice jam on the Minnesota River near Henderson. We don't have the severe wind and rain that the Northeast has received, but there will be folks who will suffer flooded basements and homes in all of this. Mother Nature sure brought Spring on in a hurry!

Here's hoping you have a good start to the week!

Sandi

Friday, March 12

Is it Friday already?!?!?!

I can't believe that it is Friday already!! I was so busy Wednesday that I never got to the post I wanted to do that day.......so......let's pretend it's Wednesday!!
And if it's the second Wednesday of the month, then that means it's a "Wooly Wednesday". That's right.... and it was a "wooly" good day as I taught a couple of projects for "wooly" spring things. :-)
I took a couple of photos so you could see the "wooly" fun in action...... That's Sandy on the left making a little woolfelt spring chicks penny rug.




And this is her daughter, Courtney, who is making a little penny rug with a bunny on it. It's really hard to tell that they are mother and daughter, isn't it? Courtney's due to be a mom in just a couple of weeks so she may not be able to make it to "Wooly Wednesday" next month. Maybe we will have to go visit her and the new baby!

I also shared a pattern for an egg pin and then did a demo with these towels so I could share some tips on cutting, placement, etc. The tulip on the right is woolfelt and the one on the left is wool. Janice at Firefly got in a great selection of towels so I bought a few to use for samples and a gift or two. :-) I will take these along to the retreat so that when I need a break from machine sewing, I'll have something to hand-stitch and relax me. I get really tense when I machine stitch. I am super-relaxed when I am doing handwork, so a mix of the two works best.

This week went by too fast and tomorrow, we lose an hour! I don't think I have an hour I want to lose. The only good part of that whole Daylight Savings Time change is that I love getting that extra hour in the Fall!!
There's a "Quilt-in" going on in my Yahoo block of the month group so I should get back over there and see what everyone is stitching on. If you want to join us, you just need to click on the Angel button on my sidebar and you can join in the fun.
I had some more fun to share that took place at Firefly after the "wooly" class was over and I'll tell you all about it come Monday. Until then......have a great weekend!
Sandi
"Peace can be found in the piecing of a quilt."
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