Tuesday, September 29

Crazy for Quilting!

And crazy for crazy quilts! I like crazy quilts because there are no rules when making a crazy quilt. You just take your fabrics and start stitching and embellishing and you get "lost" in the creative process. I think I like crazy quilting because when I am stitching a crazy quilt project I get so "lost" in the creative process that I forget about the craziness of real life! Here's another old crazy quilt that belongs to my mother.

This one is in very good condition. The backing on this one is the red fabric that borders this quilt. I love the circle in the center and decided to invent my own story for the maker..........I am sure it's a wagon-wheel that is a symbol for the wagon that carried the young woman who stitched this across country from the East to Ohio, to Missouri and then north to Iowa.

Speaking of stories, have any of you read the books by Emilie Richards? I am currently reading "Sister's Choice". She also has quilting instruction books that go along with her novels. Who is your favorite author of quilting related stories? And what's your favorite quilting book? I treasure a copy of "The Romance of the Patchwork Quilt" by Carrie Hall and Rose Kretsinger. My favorite instruction books are in my small collection of old quilting books that first inspired me. Then I have several of Better Homes and Gardens quilting books that area a staple for finding blocks and quilts to make.

Hope you are enjoying a quilty day wherever you are. Lovely crisp, fall day here in the midwest!

Monday, September 28

Busy week, busy month coming up.....

I can hardly believe that September is almost over! Only two days left and then October, which is just about my favorite month of the year, arrives! I am ready for lots of wooly projects and that is just what's on my horizon. I am excited about the month of October because I am teaching a couple of wooly classes and also a program at the end of this week for the Clear Lake Quilt Guild. Pictured above is a little penny rug that is just perfect for a simple brass candle holder. The pattern for this can be found in my Wooly Buddies Yahoo Group (click on the button in the sidebar). I also made one in a gold and brown flecked wool.
I'll be doing a pincushion workshop for the St. Peter Quilt Guild next Monday and then on Oct. 20th I'll be teaching a pincushion class at Firefly Quilt Shop in Mankato, MN. Janice, owner of Firefly, has ordered up some gorgeous wools and you can see some of them in the photo of the cupboard at her shop. She gave me bundle to use to make samples (in the basket in the photo). The little pincushion/needlecase sets are patterns that I designed and made a few years ago.

Working with wool is so relaxing and it is so easy to take along wherever you go. Must get back to work on wooly projects now.........
Have a good Monday and a good week!!!

Saturday, September 26

Lots of quilty fun to share.....

Oh, my, now that the flu is a thing of the past, I have been out and about and busy as a bee! I can't share everything that's gone on in the last three days because if you're like me, you don't have time to read every bit of news of every blog. I do want to thank all of you that stop by my blog. Sorry that I haven't posted the past couple of days but as noted, I was busy as a bee! Here's what kept me busy.........this past Thursday I taught a crazy quilted pincushion class at the Stans Museum in Shakopee. Now usually, we are in the actual museum building which is behind the house in this photo. But because of the opening of their new 1950's exhibit, we were set up in the Stans home which is part of the reasons for the Stans Museum. This house is the boyhood home of Maurice Stans, resident of Shakopee, MN and the former Secretary of Commerce to Richard Nixon. It's a charming little house and if you are in Shakopee, it is worth a visit. I'll share more about the pincushion in a day or so.

I was up early (yes, I really was) on Friday morning and I was............
......................well, almost. Actually, I went to see a couple of guys......Lenni and George that have a real quilting connection. :-) They are, of course, not really guys but that's their names. They are long-arm quilting machines. Heidi Kaisand, National Sales Director for APQS and other APQS (American Patchwork Quilting System) reps shared their enthusiasm for these machines. I decided to go because I have come to realize that there is no way I can hand-quilt all the quilt tops I have on hand and I have so many projects that I want to make! Plus, I like to do the work myself. I was impressed and when I gave the machines a try, I was surprised at how easy it was to use the them. I also knew within minutes that I preferred Lenni to George. To check out the machines just go to APQS !! And to check out Heidi's blog, go here.
The APQS presentation was hosted by Roseanne of Rosebud's Cottage in White Bear Lake, MN. She is so creative! And if you go here, you will find her blog and a post about Lenni and George. Her shop is currently located in North St. Paul but she will be moving to White Bear Lake soon. (Note to my local quilting buds........I see a road trip to her new shop in our future!)
I am not fond of driving in Minneapolis/St. Paul as, like with most cities, there are miles of convoluted highways, entrance and exit ramps that drive me nuts. However, I managed. I even figured out how to easily get over to my son's place (in MPLS) and drop off birthday gifts for him and his girlfriend, Stacia. And bonus for me........he lives just two blocks from another Twin Cities quilt shop....Glad Creations. I had a specific purpose when I went in to the shop. I was looking for black and white fabrics to go with the ones in my basket. I found a bundle and a couple of fat quarter rolls that were perfect. The fabrics are for a crazy quilt wall hanging for Devlin. I'm not cutting into this til winter but at least now, I think I have enough fabric to do what I see in my mind. :-)
We got some very welcome rain and with that came some beautiful clouds. I love clouds and thought I saw an elephant in this one. What do you think?
Speaking of clouds, tonight I watched "A Walk in the Clouds" with Keanu Reeves and that is a really good movies. Trust me. If you see that it's on, stay tuned and watch.

I may be over the flu but Kaiser is still having allergy issues. He loves to be covered up. I think his name should be Baby instead of Kaiser. LOL! I am hoping we get a freeze this next week and that will nip the goldenrod and such "in the bud" and he will be able to recover. He's on allergy meds so that helps but not enough.

I'm not looking for really cold weather, just a nip in the air that tells me it's fall. It was so lovely outside this
afternoon, though, that I took a few quilts out to the line for some pictures. This one belongs to my mother and is one a few that she has that are crazy quilted calicos. This one has severe wear and tear. I like to thing the holes were made by being tucked along a bedframe and not by mice which is the more likely scenario. The colors are very vibrant and there's a green that is especially bright. Interestingly, the back of the quilt is almost as interesting as the front. It's really an amazing piece of textile and it's just too bad that it has such obvious wear.

I took some pictures of a couple other crazy quilts and will share those in the next couple of days. Looks like I better get to bed now. I have a busy week coming up with a road trip and then a class next week. More later. Off to bed now. Sleep tight!

Wednesday, September 23

It's done, it's done, it's done!!!

Another project is finished......done, done, done!!! I am so happy with this little wallhanging! It's a pattern by Pat Sloan and I printed it out long ago and finally started it last spring. My goal was to finish it by the end of August. I'm a little off but not bad considering all that's been going on around here! One of the reasons that it took me longer to finish is because I decided to hand-quilt it instead of machine quilting it. I'm glad I did as I like the look of the hand-quilting as I do it better than machine work!

The quilt is called "StarBlooms". Years ago, I grew some Strawflowers in my garden, then dried them and used in wreaths and other arrangements. I had a "bumper crop that year". Tried to grow them several times since then and have had no luck. This design reminded me of those Strawflowers. The nice thing is that once this quilt is "grown" the flowers will never die! LOL! If you'd like to try this design, you can find it here....... PatSloanStarBlooms .

The finishing touches on "StarBlooms" were (or was? I need an editor) done while I was baking supper this evening. If you want to know what I made and read my tea post for this month, just pop over to TeaAndStitches and check it out!
It's only 10:00 p.m. The night is young so I think I will cut more Christmas Charm squares. :-)
Night all.....

Fall arrives and I am feeling wonderful!

Oh, boy, today was a really good day! I felt normal - only a couple of coughing jags and otherwise doing fine! I decided to get some "outside time"! Everything red, white and blue and summery was cleared from the porch. When I emptied my big basket, though, it was in a sad state. Three straight winters took a tole on the paint. Luckily, I had a can of green spray paint in the paint cupboard and I sprayed the whole think and it looks great. A couple of weeks ago I bought the flowers. I love all the colors and wish they were real. However, we decided not to do any plants or landscaping til next summer so, just imagine they are real. :-)

I cleaned away the summer cobwebs (and probably a few spiders that were looking forward to Halloween). Then I put away the summer quilt on my chair and replaced it with an old wool patchwork quilt. You can also see a new piece - "Arabella's Blooms" (Pat Sloan design) in the center of the photo............

It's my new "front porch project" because I am almost finished with the other two projects that I worked on this past summer. They are down to the hand-quilting and one "Summer Blooms" is this close to being done! Picture will be posted tomorrow! The other is the basket table runner and that one will likely be finished in a couple weeks. After I cleaned the porch, I decided it was a good idea to take my lunch out there and relax and did just that!

When I came back in the house, I caught a quick glimpse of this pair crossing our back yard. I grabbed my camera and click!..........

I was wondering what they were doing in my yard at 1:00 in the afternoon. They usually cross really early in the morning or around dusk. Very brave of them to cross midday.

After they cleared out of the backyard, I grabbed a quilt and my camera so that I could head to the trees for some picture taking. Behind the quilt is this big tree that is my favorite. You can see the leaves turning orange at the top. Colors are washed out because it was so sunny.

This quilt is another quilt that someone gave me so that I would be it's caretaker. That someone was Carol, staff member at Villa Maria where I host my retreats. The quilt belonged to Carol's husband's family and was brought from Pennsylvania when the family came to Minnesota many years ago. The family's last name was Morgan. That's all Carol knows about it. She put it in my hands so I can share it with my friends here and all of you out there, too.

It's loaded with an incredible variety of scraps. I would love to have yardage in so many of them! It's always interesting to me to wonder why someone puts a color here or there and how I wish that I could know!

Here are some close-ups of various sections of the quilt.

Beeeeeautiful, isn't it?
That's all for tonight. Time to turn out the lights and do some "Quilt Dreamin'!!"

Tuesday, September 22

Where was I?

That's right. Where was I? I mean, I was blogging along and then the flu bug dropped in and I had all these "ducks in a row" and now they are all over the pond! I am trying to get the "ducks all in a row" again but finding that it is not so easy. No more excuses, though. Things could always be worse. I am actually feeling much better in spite of continued flu symptoms and the need to take more naps than I'd like to. My voice is sounding less and less like Kermit the frog although I don't think I'll be hitting any high notes in the next few days. However, since most of what I've done is sleep these last few days, I haven't done anything really blogworthy and haven't taken any photos. So what can I tell you about?
Hmmm, well, I was feeling good enough to get back to cutting charm squares from my Christmas fabrics tonight! I've been putting them in piles to go off to some of you blogging friends who are waiting for them! I started the cutting a couple of weeks ago when my husband was home on vacation. I found that while he was home on vacation that he got a lot done but I, well, not so much. It's good to have him back at work. :-) As I was cutting my Christmas fabrics, there were a couple that caught my eye and I knew they would look good used in the stockings challenge that Pat Sloan has going on at her website. It's another one of those "have been printing out the patterns and going to do them one of these days" projects. I was ending up with lots of scraps of fabrics so I started making the first stocking ......... then the second one. Finished them both in one night. I was hooked. Every evening while my husband was on vacation, I finished off a little stocking. Just like I can see Gail Pan's "Christmas Wish" blocks in a wall quilt for my pink bedroom, I can see these stockings in a wall quilt that will hang by my front door. I plan to fill the stockings with candy canes and add other fun buttons and bits. They stockings were easy to do and I had fun using trims and buttons to really make them "pop". Here are the finished ones up to this point...........If you want to make these just move it on over to Pat's WEBSITE and you'll find the patterns! Thanks, Pat!

My Christmas stash covers the years of 1976 up to today. I thought I'd brought all the Christmas prints upstairs to my sewing room and tonight I went to the basement looking for some fall leaf fabrics and found another box full of Christmas fabrics! Over the years, I bought lots of Fat Quarters and 1/4 and 1/2 yard and, you know, some of them are really cute!
I also found the fall fabric, thank goodness! Especially, since this is the first day of Fall/Autumn for many of us. We got a nice refreshing rain which made the leaves on the trees sparkle. Just a bit of orange and a touch of yellow are beginning to show up now. I'll be back later this afternoon when Autumn officially arrives and share another post.
Have a good day!

Saturday, September 19

Thinking of Bill Cosby.........

That's right, I've been thinking of Bill Cosby and the routine he did about the "tonsils". I seem to recall a part where he's talking about "not gonna swallow" and that's because it hurts. That was me last night. Throat so sore that I didn't want to swallow. And this is a virus so other than aspirin and cough syrup, I am at the mercy of this flu.
I was also thinking of my mother in the wee hours of this morning when I couldn't sleep because of the cough and sore throat and oh, how my ears ached! When we were little she would warm some mineral oil and then dip a cotton ball in the warm mineral oil and place it in our ear. It was soothing. I went to the bathroom cupboard and thankfully there was a bottle of mineral oil in there. I didn't take the time to heat it, just placed it on the cotton ball, put it in my ear and laid down on the heating pad to get some sleep. And it worked. I got 2 1/2 hours of solid sleep! I felt a little better after that nap. Then I took another one after lunch and before supper. I think the cough syrup is making me drowsy. It hurts to talk so I am glad that the doctor said stay home til the cough is gone. I should have stayed home all week. I'm going to make every effort to not pass this on to anyone else!
So, other than naps, what did I accomplish today? Well, I did some handquilting on a tablerunner then, I went to the pantry and decided to check all the canned goods and boxed foods to make sure they weren't expired. Exciting, huh? I've never had a pantry until we moved to this house so having a good supply of food on hand is a blessing. Again tonight, I heard another news story that donations to food shelves are down so tomorrow's excitement will be to pull a couple of bags full of items from the pantry and donate it to the Food Shelf. And there'll be some more handquilting tomorrow and probably a nap or two.
And speaking of naps, Kaiser the Wonder Beagle, excels at napping....................

When I saw that he had fallen asleep on the edge of my project table as his pillow, I couldn't believe it. How comfortable could this be? Must have been fine as he slept there for over an hour! I'm glad he likes to nap because when I am not feeling well and need a nap, he lays down and takes one, too! :-)
I'm feeling better today than yesterday and hoping that tomorrow I will feel better than I did today!
Have a lovely Sunday!

Friday, September 18

I definitely have the flu.....

in fact, it might even be H1N1 flu. The doctor did the swab test and in 7- 10 days I'll be notified if it is or isn't. She's pretty sure it is just because of the symptoms I've had. Either way, it's the flu and it's not fun. I decided to go to the doctor because I wasn't able to control the coughing. She said "you must not be able to sleep" and I said "that's right", so she prescribed a strong cough medicine which seems to help a bit. Because of the possibility it's H1N1 and I have this cough, I got strict orders to go home and stay there til the cough is gone. That's because they (medical folk) have determined it's more "airborne" than initially thought. I am suspecting that I caught this bug, whatever strain it is, at the State Fair. It fits the time-frame to a "T". And interestingly, my daughter who went to fair the day before we did is also sick. She's been diagnosed with bronchitus. We both just want the cough to go away.

I thought I was going to be setting up an exhibit of some of my vintage quilts at the Henderson Library tonight as it's Heritage Days in Henderson this weekend. After consulting with members of the library group, we decided it was best to just post a notice apologizing for my illness and recommend to those interested in quilts to go up to the Sibley County Historical Society and check out the quilts there. Sometimes the best-laid plans just don't work out. However, I won't be bored. You'll find me in my sewing room this weekend, taking my meds, getting some rest and hoping that by Monday the cough is gone. I have a program to do for the Prior Lake Quilters on Monday evening so I need to be well by then! Already thinking about what Plan B will be if the cough is still lingering.
Hope you have a good weekend. I am planning a quiet one!


Thursday, September 17

The Old Barn Boutique

Just a quick post before I go off to bed. The flu has a good hold on me but I think I am going to beat it. The cough is the worst. I sound like a honking goose when I cough!! Hoping that tomorrow I will feel much better.

I wanted to share some photos of the Old Barn Boutique that is located just north of Belle Plaine, MN. I've passed by there many times but don't always get the chance to stop. On Wednesday, though, I had time as I headed home from the Art Institute. Of course, I realize now that I was probably spreading flu germs everywhere I went and for that I am very sorry. I thought I was doing okay that day but not the case. Luckily, I can't pass it along via the Internet so you are all safe!

Here is the big red barn that houses the Old Barn Boutique.

Connie Witt and Jean Thomson are the gals who have created this little venture that is in it's 13th year!
The barn is filled with fall, Halloween and Christmas goodies. Many are handcrafted, some are vintage items, and some holiday gift items. I like the way they display everything.
The barn silo gets put to good use for lots of Halloween goodies.
This "field" of Candy Corn folk and friends just made me laugh.

There are furniture items for sale, too, and all sorts of fun stuff!

As much as I loved the Halloween and fall colors, my favorite item was the vintage sleds. I already have one and when I saw these, I was wishing my husband hadn't thrown away his old ice skates!! :-)
I know that many of my readers are local, so if you do live nearby and want to stop in, they are open this weekend Sept. 16-20, 9-6 and the same hours apply the next weekend Sept. 25-27.
I didn't do much shopping as I have so much Holiday stuff but I found two things I had to bring home.....one was a little teacup and saucer and that photo was out of focus so I can't post it. The other items was this green leaf plate that caught my eye. I can see some dainty little cookies on that for some future Tea and Stitches post.
That's all for tonight. Sleep tight.

Wednesday, September 16

A day out at the Minneapolis Institute of Art!

My friend, Deanna, and I had a great visit to the Minneapolis Institute of Art today. We went to see a vintage crazy quilt that is only on display for another two weeks. I had seen the quilt when it was on exhibit in 1999. Another quilting friend, Marianne, learned of it and took me along to see it. I couldn't take any pictures of the quilt but if you would like to see it just click here. I'll tell you more about it later on but I have a cold/flu thing that seems to be trying to take hold of me although, I keep trying to not let it get me. I'm turning in early tonight and will come back in the morning with more quilt details. I'll also share some pictures of a little "side-trip" that I made on my way home .....a quick stop at the "13th Annual Old Barn Boutique". Most of the day was cloudy while we were in the museum but when I stopped at the Old Barn Boutique the sun was shinging and made for some gorgeous photos.
Later then......

P.S. I have been cutting Christmas charm squares for those of you that won my Christmas charm squares drawing. I'll get them in the mail in a week or so along with some fat quarters and some other gifties to those of you that participated in my tea and potholder challenges in my Yahoo groups. :-)

School Days, School Days..........

Dear old golden rule days!! Are you familiar with that song? I like it. I also liked going to school. Wasn't necessarily the smartest kid in class but I did okay. Especially if it wasn't math. :-) I was good at spelling bees, loved history, enjoyed reading so didn't mind book reports and I excelled at music. I was awful in sports but loved watching basketball so I was a cheerleader. That math thing, though, is something I have never mastered. It's amazing that I can make quilts as they involve lots and lots of math. I've done a number of patterns and taught classes for them locally. My biggest challenge has always been to get the measurements accurate. Inevitably, I always have some slight mistake and thankfully, I am usually teaching to friends and they make it right. I don't know what I would do without my friends. Same goes for family but right now, I'm just talking friends.
When I "returned to quilting" in the late 1990's, I began to meet the neatest women and quickly collected friends, fabric, and fun all at the same time. Before I go on, perhaps I should explain what I mean by "returned to quilting"............I made my first quilt in 1970 for our first child, Collette. It was just a patchwork tied quilt that cannot really be called a quilt because all the layers weren't quilted together. By my daughters standards, it was a quilt. I made little doll quilts and pillows and twin bed quilts off and on through the mid-1980's. They were all tied "comforters". Most of my handiwork, though, from 1970 through the early 1990's was done in miniature as I was active in the Midwest Miniature Guild and taught workshops in making tiny dolls and clothes, little elves, and miniature furniture, and all sorts of accessories for dollhouse scenes. I really enjoyed it all but when our son was in high school, I made some fund-raising quilt/comforters and realized that I really wanted to get back to quilting. When he graduated from high school in 1994, I got out my box of quilting books and such and jumped back into quilting. Just as he went off to college, I began volunteering at Murphy's Landing, a living history open air site that really brought me back to my "quilting roots". I began teaching some girls who were home-schooled and often visited the site. Then I offered Beginning Quilting classes through Community Ed and at a nearby Michael's store. I had a lot of fun showing others the very basics that would get them started on quilting on their own. I took the classes to our local libraries and volunteered to teach the classes in every library of our county over the course of the summers of 2001 and 2002. I met and made so many wonderful friends. I've decided I'm going to introduce you to a few of those friends because without them, I wouldn't do have the quilting stuff that I do. They keep me inspired and support me when there are ups and downs in life. I try to do the same for them.
SO, I'm going to tell you about Laura. I met her when she signed up along with her two kids for the Beginning Quilt class in the Savage library in 2002. Laura had done some quilting so she didn't really need the class, but her son and daughter both made the placemat sized project that I taught. That was the beginning of our friendship. We've enjoyed many classes together and have lots of fun at retreats. It was at my retreat last fall that Laura made a little project that I want to share with you all today. It started with this little quilt pattern you see below...........

I designed this little quilt as a "thank you" gift for all the students/friends that had taken classes from me in Community Ed and taught it as a free class sometime in 2003 or so (sorry memory fails me and I don't have time to search my planners for the date). I included a copy of the pattern in the gift bags everyone got at the retreat. Laura had made the Halloween mini quilt and thought she'd like one for Thanksgiving. In no time at all she had whipped up this cute little Turkey themed mini-quilt. She used a turkey from another pattern she had made and the pumpkin from the Halloween quilt and drew the tree herself. She had plans to make one a month. And that's exactly what she has done! She's got nine done and is anxious to finish the rest. Photos of her quilts are posted in an album in the Seasons BOM group.

Now, as I noted, my friends inspire me and I had also thought it would be fun to do the little quilts, one for each month but I never got to it. That is until this past week. That "School Days" quilt that you see at the top of this post is my first, make that second after the Halloween mini-quilt, monthly quilt. It's all hand-quilted and I even sewed a label on the back!

I've told you all this because you might want to make these little quilts for you house. I had a spot in my kitchen where I have hung my schoolhouse quilt. The pattern is posted on my sidebar but if you want a PDF of the pattern you will need to join my Yahoo Seasons BOM group. That's where I post the monthly applique blocks and the Snowmen blocks that I am currently offering. I wanted to offer up a challenge to members of the group and it involves this little quilt project. It will be a year long challenge with twelve winners and one grand prize winner. Anyone who makes a little quilt and posts it will get their name in the drawing for a charm pack of fabrics that would be suitable for the next month. For more details you'll just have to join my Yahoo group. To do that, just click on the Snowman on the sidebar and click the "join" button. If you have questions, just send me an e-mail.
That's all for tonight. I'm off to the Minneapolis Institute of Arts on Wednesday. My friend, Deanna and I are going to view an antique crazy quilt that is on exhibit. I don't think I can take pictures so I'll find something else to share tomorrow, too.
Have a good day!

Tuesday, September 15

Wooly Dyeing Results!

Two weeks ago, my grandson, Jacob, and I had fun painting wool and cotton fabrics. This past week, I used fabric dye and had some fun. Every day, I tried a different color. The dyes I used are by Dylon and can be purchased at fabric and/or craft stores. I found mine at Hancock Fabrics and at Hobby Lobby. Each store carried different colors.

I could hardly wait to get started. I assembled my supplies including several cuts of the precious white wool that I ordered last spring from the Amana Colonies.
I started with Ocean Blue first. The package said to use rubber gloves and I did - most of the time. :-) I wasn't dyeing a large item such as sheets so I adjusted the dyeing process to suit my needs. I also adjusted the amount of salt that the package directions recommend. Does the salt make the dye set? or what is it's purpose?
I filled my little bucket with warm water and added about a third of the package of dye and about 1-1/2 tablespoons salt and stirred it well. Then I took rubber bands and bundled up the wool with rubber bands. This is like tie-dyeing. When the dye soaks into the bundle of fabric more liquid is absorbed in some areas than others and you get an interesting effect.
I placed my bundle carefully in the dye bath. The directions said I should be dyeing in a stainless steel sink. I don't have one. This is the deep sink in my laundry room and it's very white. Not wanting to stain it, I set one bucket inside the other so the dye bucket didn't leave a ring in the sink.
As directed, I stirred the wool in the dye bath. I let it set for about 30 minutes and stirred it some more. I left each one overnight and drained off the dye in the morning. Then I rinsed the wool in cool water and washed in the washing machine as directed on the package. Out of curiousity, I put a couple white items in each wash to see if the dyed wool would "bleed". Not one bit of dye of any color did any "bleeding". I tumble dryed each color then pressed them and ..........

.....here are some of the interesting colors that resulted. The fuschia color is what resulted from the tulip red dye. I wasn't able to get a true red as it was sold out. I am also missing a brighter green so when I get those, I'll be doing some more dyeing. The three pieces on the lower left were "overdyed", in other words..........tied up and dyed in one color, washed and dried and then tied up and dyed in another color. To add even more interest to these pieces, I'm going to do some fabric painting on some sections. I plan to use these pieces in various penny rug and wool applique projects for I see in them - flowers, leaves, birds, and so much more!! You'll see a little bit of all of these in lots of projects in the next several months.
Dyeing and painting fabric - whether cotton or wool - is fun and you can end up with some really beautiful pieces. The only down-side is that it's pretty messy and it is a bit time-consuming. It's definitely worth the time and trouble!
Let me know if you give this a try.

Sunday, September 13

Minnesota State Fair - Part Two

The afternoon got away from me and it's almost evening! Beautiful sunset is building out to the west but my camera can't catch it's magic. It has been a hot day here in Minnesota and if it weren't for the calendar we wouldn't suspect it is supposed to be fall!!! It's about 80 degrees outside! I'm glad it wasn't this hot for our outing to the Fair. And speaking of the Fair, let me get to it and show you some more photos of that great day! I wish had names for the items, I'll be showing and can only hope that those who entered these items in the Fair don't mind that their project is shown here.

Remember that woolly sheep in my last post? Well, you only have to take a look at this Father Christmas figure to see why I would love some of that wool! All you, Wooly Buddies, out there should like this gentleman in his red plaid robe with touches of penny rug style on the hem. It only earned a third place ribbon. I give it a blue. The American Swedish Institute liked it and gave it an award and I agree with that one.

Right behind Father Christmas was this gorgeous pieced and embroidered quilt. This was my favorite quilt at the Fair. I did not get the ribbon it won in the photo but I believe it was a first place blue.

Stacia and I liked this quilt and we were amazed at the number of triangles in this quilt that earned a red second place ribbon.

We also liked this one that had a unique feature.....in addition to the embroidered basket blocks there were tiny blue Swarovski crystals carefully placed around the quilt. It only earned a white third place. I know they can't give blue ribbons to every quilt but the work on this one was excellent.
In addition to quilts there were many other needlework and craft projects to see.

These beautifully detailed dolls are one example. Very, very nice and earned a well-deserved blue ribbon.

I thought I'd seen all the quilts until my son, Devlin, asked if I'd seen the beautiful many stars quilt. He took me around to see it and thank goodness he did or I couldn't show it to you. This quilt earned a blue ribbon, a purple grand champion ribbon and was awarded the Minnesota Quilter's Sweepstakes ribbon!!! It is absolutely amazing!

I don't knit or crochet but Stacia, my son's girlfriend, does and she was admiring this. It was so much more lovely when seen in person. My photo does not do it justice. Even though I can't do a thing with yarn, I can really appreciate the fine work done on this shawl.

After we'd seen lots of exhibits and such, we were all hungry. My husband wanted Funnel Cakes.........
and Stacia and I were in search of "Hot dish on a stick"..........
so we stopped at an information to find out just where it was so we would not miss it! On our way to find it, my husband got side-tracked by this.............

and he convinced Devlin and Stacia to join him to see the live reptiles. I waited outside by the DNR nature building. No snakes at the Fair for me!! I wanted to get a picture of them exiting the building but missed it because I was too busy "people-watching".

Then it was on to the "Hotdish on a Stick" booth and here it is...................and it's run by Ole and Lena! Hee hee!! If you are a Minnesota (or from anywhere in the Midwest and have Scandinavian roots or friends, you are very aware of Ole and Lena stories).
Stacia ordered up here Hotdish on a Stick and I was right behind her..........and here I am ready to chow down on what was more like a corn dog with a couple of tater tots and meatballs on a skewer and some gravy for dipping. It was actually very good!

We wandered around some more and then us old folks - my husband and me - were getting tired so we decided to head for home. I didn't have any back problems like I thought I might from all the walking on pavement. We took the day very slowly though, and never made it to Heritage Village, or the auditorium and we missed the Horticulture exhibits, etc. That's okay as there is always next year!! We're already planning to make sure our daughter and family can join us all on the same day. Hope you enjoyed this visit to the Minnesota State Fair!

"Peace can be found in the piecing of a quilt."
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