Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Quilt Shop Visit - Tumbleweed Quilts

As I mentioned in my Sunday Stash Report, The Pit Boss and I visited a couple of quilt shops on our anniversary trip. The first one we went to was Tumbleweed Quilts in West Barnstable, Massachusetts, which is on Cape Cod. 


tumbleweed quilt cape cod west barnstable massachusetts shop

When you pull up, it looks like a little cottage. It's deceptively small. I wish I had taken a picture of the outside so you could see how amazing the inside is! 

tumbleweed quilt cape cod west barnstable massachusetts shop sample sea horse

Once you go inside, though, the rooms just keep going! All the way in the back was a classroom area where a group of women were sewing and chatting. I don't know if it was a class or a bee group or what, but they seemed to be having a lovely time. There are samples hanging all around, with some ocean/Cape Cod types of things (I love the sea horses above) but plenty of "regular" quilts as well.

tumbleweed quilt cape cod west barnstable massachusetts shop color


I went from room to room, trying to narrow down the choices. There were whole sections grouped by color. This was a glimpse down the aisle with greens on the right, neutrals on the left, and pinks in the distance. 


tumbleweed quilt cape cod west barnstable massachusetts shop fabric polka dot

There were so many awesome groupings of fabric, including this gorgeous wall of polka dots. Don't you love the fish hanging out on top of the shelf? 

tumbleweed quilt cape cod west barnstable massachusetts shop fabric solid

And there was a whole room full of solids. I really wish this shop were closer to me for when I'm looking for something specific. They have so much!

tumbleweed quilt cape cod west barnstable massachusetts shop fabric

Eventually I settled on four cuts (top to bottom):


I have no idea what I'll do with any of it, but it will be a fun reminder of our trip to Cape Cod! 

Tumbleweed Quilts is worth the drive if you are in the area, especially if you are on the hunt for a specific color or type of print. 



Monday, June 19, 2017

#MachineQuiltingBlogHop Week 8 - U-Turns

machine quilting blog hop

Welcome to Week 7 of the Machine Quilting Blog Hop!


Today we are working on Chapter 8 of The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting by Angela Walters and Christa Watson, U-Turns.



For this chapter I went back to the Halloween/Autumn UFO that I worked on in Week 6. A lot of the designs in this chapter are ones I've already done, just in different types of spaces. I hadn't really tried ribbon loops yet, and thought they would be perfect for the outer border of this little quilt.

True confessions: I didn't do a lot this week because The Pit Boss and I just returned from our 25th anniversary trip. Also, I dropped my machine off for service before we left and just got her back. Sorry for the lack of quilting!

The book is available for purchase at the Martingale site, and we have some exciting news coming up at the end of the hop. Only two more weeks!  Don't forget to visit Vicki, Kristin, and HollyAnne to see how they handled the designs in this chapter. 

Please jump in and join us on your favorite social media channel using the hashtag #machinequiltingbloghop and post pictures of your progress. No blog required! 

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Sunday Stash - I Get Around

Note: This is part two of Sunday Stash. Click here for Part 1.

The Pit Boss and I just returned from an amazing 25th anniversary trip to Boston and Cape Cod, where I ate a crazy amount of seafood and walked a ridiculous amount of steps. Probably not enough steps to offset the food, but still a lot.


lobster roll cape cod provincetown pellegrino

I dropped my machine off for service a few days before we left, so no fabric was used this week.


provincetown red inn anniversary dinner 25th

However, since I married the most amazing man ever twenty-five years ago, I did take in quite a bit on our trip. I also managed to fit it all into my suitcase despite fears that I would have to ship it home.


cape cod quilt shop

I'll write more about each shop this week, but we visited two quilt shops on our trip, and tried another one that is closed on Mondays. 


tumbleweed quilts cape cod crab whale state fabric

First we visited Tumbleweed Quilts in West Barnstable, Massachusetts. This is a shop that looks smallish but keeps going on and on! I got lost in there for about 30 minutes before deciding on these mementos of our trip. This added 4 yards to my stash.


keepsake quilting new hampshire fabric shop

Then, on Friday when the rain came in, The Pit Boss suggested a drive to New Hampshire to visit the Mecca of quilt shops, Keepsake Quilting. Is he the best or what? I picked up about 7 more yards of fabric there.

Fabric Used this Week: 0 yards
Fabric Used year to Date: 21.5 yards
Fabric Added this Week: 11 yards
Fabric Added Year to Date: 38.5 yards
Net Fabric for 2017: -17 yards used
Used for Charity Year to Date: 2.5 yards
Percentage Used for Charity: 12%

I'm linking up with QuiltPaintCreate to track my Sunday Stash Reports. Visit the blog and link up so we can keep the link party going!

Monday, June 12, 2017

#MachineQuiltingBlogHop Week 7 - Exploding Star

machine quilting blog hop

Welcome to Week 7 of the Machine Quilting Blog Hop!

ultimate guide to machine quilting angela walters christa watson exploding star continuous spiral modern block turnaround

Today we are working on Chapter 7 of The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting by Angela Walters and Christa Watson, Exploding Star.

ultimate guide to machine quilting angela walters christa watson exploding star continuous spiral modern block turnaround


I learned Christa's technique for quilting a continuous spiral in the class I took with her back in February, and I've been looking for an opportunity to practice it again. I thought this Turnaround star block from the Modern Blocks Hop would be just the thing to show it off.
ultimate guide to machine quilting angela walters christa watson exploding star continuous spiral modern block turnaround aurifil clover white pen

An Aurifil spool is about the perfect size to start this, and my Clover white pen shows up on the deep blue.


ultimate guide to machine quilting angela walters christa watson exploding star continuous spiral modern block turnaround


I chose a variegated blue thread, which I think gives the design some interesting movement. The only downside is that the wobbles are more pronounced, but I just keep reminding myself that this is practice. I didn't finish because my bobbin ran out, but you get the idea. I really do love the effect of this design, and it's not hard, although you do have to take your time and go slowly.

This book has been so helpful for me to see different ways to quilt specific areas and shapes, and it's still on sale at the Martingale site. Don't forget to visit Vicki, Kristin, and HollyAnne for their take on Exploding Star.

Please jump in and join us on your favorite social media channel using the hashtag #machinequiltingbloghop and post pictures of your progress. No blog required! 

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Sunday Stash - City Square Quilts and The Longarm Network

Note: this was supposed to be last week's Sunday Stash, but I didn't get it done before The Pit Boss and I left on our 25th anniversary trip. This is the first of two parts.

I took Wednesday off to run some errands, and quickly sent my stash numbers deep into the red. Since I had to go get my passport, and since the post offices near me are booked for the foreseeable future, I made an appointment in Winder, Georgia. Of course I did a quick search to find a nearby quilt shop, and luckily found City Square Quilts just about fifteen minutes away in Hoschton. 

city square quilt shop hoschton georgia

This is a nice little shop in a small historic main street area. There's a pizza parlor called Sliced on one side and a yarn store called Yarn Junkees on the other. Unfortunately both were closed while I was there.

city square quilt shop hoschton georgia

It was a beautiful morning and the door was open to let the fresh air and quilters inside. The woman working that day showed me a new ruler and mat collection from Alex Anderson called Quilters Select. I didn't get a good photo, but the rulers have a great nonskid back. The mat is reversible and is a lighter color on one side to make it easier to see when you're cutting dark fabrics. Let me know what you think if you've tried these.

city square quilt shop hoschton georgia

City Square Quilts has some great collections, including the beginning of a gorgeous shelf of batiks. They will get ten new prints every week (month? I can't remember!) until the collection is filled out. I just had to buy that green and purple one! 

city square quilt shop hoschton georgia batik

After my passport appointment, I headed up the road to Greenville, South Carolina so I could finally swap out the saddle I bought at QuiltCon. I don't if I ever mentioned that, once I got it home, it was too tall for my table. I mean, just barely too tall, but enough that I was not going to be comfortable. I didn't even realize my table was so low.


Luckily, when I called the shop, they told me they would happily swap it out. We promised to keep in touch, and if they were in Atlanta for a show they would call me. I could have shipped it back and paid for shipping the new one, but that seemed like a giant waste since Greenville is just a few hours away. This was my chance!

the longarm network greenville south carolina

The Longarm Network was easy to find and not far off I-85. They have a great selection of supplies and classes. I'm thinking of making a day trip up there to take a class. I was so excited to pick this gorgeous blue for my new saddle. 

the longarm network greenville south carolina innova extra wide back

Even if you don't have a longarm, this is worth a stop. They have the best selection of extra wide backs I think I've ever seen. I love the selection and that they aren't all off white, babyish or too feminine. 

the longarm network greenville south carolina omni thread

The selection of threads made me laugh thinking of Angela Walters's frequent refrain, "Quilting is my therapy and threads are my meds!

the longarm network greenville south carolina quilting

I loved seeing some great quilting designs on the wall. I couldn't wait to come home and try some of these!

city square quilt shop hoschton georgia the longarm network innova greenville south carolina

I made it out of The Longarm Network with just my saddle, but at City Square Quilts I bought 1 1/2 yards of this Choice Fabrics Supreme Solids lavender and a yard of Bella Solids baby yellow for my Strippers Knot quilt, a couple of pretty fat quarters, and the batik just because it really wanted to come home with me. Sadly no fabric used last week, so I'm deep in the red again!

  • Fabric Used this Week: 0 yards
    • Fabric Used year to Date: 21.5 yards
  • Fabric Added this Week: 4 yards
    • Fabric Added Year to Date: 27.5 yards
  • Net Fabric for 2017: -6 yards used
  • Used for Charity Year to Date: 2.5 yards
    • Percentage Used for Charity: 12%

I'm linking up with QuiltPaintCreate to track my Sunday Stash Reports. Visit the blog and link up so we can keep the link party going!


Saturday, June 10, 2017

What's On? In Case You're Not Having Enough Trouble Sleeping

This week, what's on is about things that keep me up at night. Not that I need help thanks to being 47 years old and always hot. Except when I'm freezing.

What I'm Reading:




I've got a book for work partially finished that is taking a little more time. It requires more thought and is not the kind of book you can read while brushing your teeth or waiting for the dogs to pee. It's called Lights Out by Ted Koppel. Ted spoke at a conference I attended in September. It was one of the most fascinating, terrifying things I've ever heard. 

What I'm Watching:





The Handmaid's Tale, a Hulu Original, is so creepy I can barely stand it. I can't decide which horror perpetrated on these women is the worst, but I also can't look away. The issue of fertility is so close to home, and the misogyny portrayed feels very plausible at the moment. Are any of you watching this?

What I'm Listening To: 

Breakdown: Predator MD by the Atlanta Journal and Constitution is about a doctor in my town who has been dodging prosecution in multiple states and countries for years, and once again has gotten away with sexually abusing patients and staff. While interesting, this podcast is not for anyone with high blood pressure. The gross incompetence of various medical boards, district attorneys, judges, and other law enforcement officials is beyond infuriating.

I have to take breaks from this one and fill the gaps with quilty goodness to keep from throwing something. 

Why, you ask, do I indulge in things that make me crazy? I don't really have a good answer for that, except to say that I have this incredible need to know things. You know the saying about asking someone what time it is and they tell you how to build a watch? I like that person. I like knowing why the watch works. So even the things that I know are going to bother me - I still want to know.

What's on at your place? Anything good?

Friday, June 9, 2017

Georgia Celebrates Quilts

ecqg georgia celebrates quilt show east cobb 2017


It's time for the East Cobb Quilters Guild show, Georgia Celebrates Quilts! If you are in the the area, please take time to go today or tomorrow. It is a fantastic show full of over 300 mind boggling quilts. Plus my String Spider Web is there.


ecqg georgia celebrates quilt show east cobb 2017 string spider web bonnie hunter
String Spider Web by Jennifer Greer

Last week a supportive and optimistic friend from work asked, "When do you find out if your quilt won?" Isn't she cute? I had to break it to her gently that I already knew, and there was no way in hell my quilt was going to win anything in this show. I'm not being modest or self-deprecating; I am very proud of my quilt and I love how it turned out, but it is not even in the same ballpark as the winners. There are quilts in this show that will make you weep for how beautiful they are with no ribbons on them. The winners are simply breathtaking. I cannot imagine how hard this was for the judges. Honestly, I'm just honored that my quilt was accepted.


ecqg georgia celebrates quilt show east cobb 2017 cindy christenson my belle whole cloth
My Belle by Cindy Christenson
Best Machine Quilting - Computer Guided. 1st Place - Special Technique

Being in the middle of the #machinequiltingbloghop, I was very drawn into the fabulous quilting in this show. There were some examples of every stitch we've practiced and many, many more. 


ecqg georgia celebrates quilt show east cobb 2017 cindy christenson my belle whole cloth swirls and pearls
My Belle by Cindy Christenson
Best Machine Quilting - Computer Guided. 1st Place - Special Technique

ecqg georgia celebrates quilt show east cobb 2017 cindy christenson my belle whole cloth swirls and pearlsls
My Belle by Cindy Christenson
Best Machine Quilting - Computer Guided. 1st Place - Special Technique
HollyAnne and I found ourselves leaning in, oohing and aahing, pointing out little details, and fighting off envy. 


ecqg georgia celebrates quilt show east cobb 2017 cindy christenson my belle whole cloth orange peel
My Belle by Cindy Christenson
Best Machine Quilting - Computer Guided. 1st Place - Special Technique

We found the section above and many more like it and called Lynn over to ask, what is that? She said it's microstippling. HollyAnne and I just looked at each other and agreed, we've both been calling regular stippling microstippling! It is so tiny and dense, and gives the illusion of snow.


ecqg georgia celebrates quilt show east cobb 2017 christie stevens omigosh
Omigosh by Christie Stevens

And that's not to say that the piecing was lacking. There were so many quilts with so many tiny pieces. Walking away from this one I overheard someone say, "She obviously has a problem throwing away scraps." 


ecqg georgia celebrates quilt show east cobb 2017 christie stevens omigosh
Omigosh by Christie Stevens
Yes, there are 10,000 pieces in Christie's quilt!


ecqg georgia celebrates quilt show east cobb 2017 lynn rinehart bonkers lewis carroll
Bonkers by Lynn Rinehart
It was fun to see quilts by people we know... 


ecqg georgia celebrates quilt show east cobb 2017 ben hollinsgworth a celebration of lines zentangle
A Celebration of Lines by Ben Hollingsworth
3rd Place - Special Techniques
...especially quilts with ribbons on them. I didn't even realize this was Ben's, although I should have recognized his style immediately. He had been keeping under wraps until the show. 

ecqg georgia celebrates quilt show east cobb 2017 ben hollinsgworth a celebration of lines zentangle
A Celebration of Lines by Ben Hollingsworth
3rd Place - Special Techniques
If you look closely, you can see some very special lines on the elephant.


ecqg georgia celebrates quilt show east cobb 2017 andi settlemoir barney snow day red hen
Snow Day by Andi Settlemoir Barney
I don't know how Andi still has time to quilt while running Red Hen, servicing machines, and working with Paul on Lasting Impressions. She is the queen of multitasking!  

These pictures are just the tip of the iceberg! I hope you make time to come see the quilts and shop with the vendors. 

Monday, June 5, 2017

#MachineQuiltingBlogHop Week 6 - Cornered

machine quilting blog hop

Welcome to Week 6 of the Machine Quilting Blog Hop!

ultimate guide to machine quilting angela walters christa watson cornered

Today we are working on Chapter 6 of The Ultimate Guide to Machine Quilting by Angela Walters and Christa Watson, Cornered.


ultimate guide to machine quilting angela walters christa watson cornered

I decided to practice this week's designs on an old round robin UFO with some questionable fabric choices but good borders to practice my quilting. I apologize for the photography. It has been raining for days. Not that we complain about the weather.


ultimate guide to machine quilting angela walters christa watson triangle

One of the designs I am having a lot of fun experimenting with is the triangles in all their variations. They're simple and quick - no more work than stitching in the ditch but much more interesting! I'm not marking them at all; I just aim for the point of the triangle and swoop over. No, they are not all exactly the same and they are not perfect, but I love the texture and effect.


ultimate guide to machine quilting angela walters christa watson spiral flower

The design that I thought I would like and which didn't look all that complicated is this spiral flower. It was way harder than I expected, and the first one definitely had to be ripped out. You know I don't do that lightly! I'm a big believer in practice and that it doesn't have to be perfect, so you know it is bad if I pulled out the seam ripper.


ultimate guide to machine quilting angela walters christa watson spiral flower

It got better as I went along.


ultimate guide to machine quilting angela walters christa watson spiral hook

The spiral hook design is beautiful but a little bit difficult to wrap your head around. I practiced it on paper quite a bit before attempting it on the quilt, and I still had some awkward moments. One thing I need to practice more is how to move around the space and fill in the gaps.


ultimate guide to machine quilting angela walters christa watson wavy plaid

I'm a huge fan of this wavy plaid design. It is even easier than it looks and creates a beautiful texture. I think this would make a fantastic all over design in the negative space behind applique. 

We're moving right through the book, which is still on sale over at the Martingale site. Don't forget to visit Vicki, Kristin, and HollyAnne to see what they practiced this week. I think it's so cool how different we each approach the same material.

Please jump in and join us on your favorite social media channel using the hashtag #machinequiltingbloghop and post pictures of your progress. No blog required! It's lots of fun and it really does help improve your machine quilting skills.


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