Saturday, March 12, 2016

Back and Forth, Back and Forth......

Where did the week go again?! If I am not careful it will be Christmas before I know it!

Oh I know, I had to go back and forth to the sewing machine dealer...only an hour away...
If you remember I had dropped my machine off to be fixed, I picked it up Wed.

I stopped at Verna’s and picked up some more fabric for the 365 Challenge. Hopefully I only need a little more shirting for the background.

Thursday the machine started having the same symptoms. I took it back to the dealer and stated very nicely either the machine is fixed when I leave or I will be walking out with a new one.
Surprisingly all it needed was a new bobbin case! All that frustration from the time I bought it in Sept. last year until now.....

I went to a retreat this week. I had a mini retreat because it started on Tues. and is over Sun. early evening.  I got there early evening Wed. and stayed until early evening Fri.
I am on vacation this week and did not want to spend all of it at a retreat. WHAT?!?!? Did I just put that in writing: I did NOT want to spend all of it at a retreat?
I will blame that remark on my evil Gemini twin. 
For the meal Wed. I made a veggie pizza from scratch. Well it was supposed to be a veggie pizza because I gave up meat Wed. and Fri. for Lent but half of it got ham. Sorry no pictures, I was too hungry to take any. Keep in mind there are only 3 women at this retreat, 2 others and me. There was a little less than half left and we started with a 16” pie. I should have brought the rest home because I venture to say the left over went to the dogs...
I was a little upset that the host knows I gave up meat for Lent but insists on adding some to my meal. (Everyone must bring or make an evening meal, except for the host.) Gggrrrrr…

Thurs. evening Ellen made a Rueben casserole (9" x 13"):

Now on to the good stuff - what was worked on:

Mel is making Judy Neimyer’s: Split Log Cabin.

She went into her stash and pulled out 80 different fabrics, some of the fabric is 20 years old. FINALLY she is starting to use her stash! It took her 3 days to cut all the pieces; 1,040 and it will be paper pieced at that. Why she is doing that particular pattern when she has 2 Log Cabin quilts is beyond me...
 Now you have to understand this is just one of her fabric collections:
left side

middle and right side

 And at the end of the month Ellen and her are taking a road trip down to Wytheville, Va. stopping at 13 shops planned so far.

Ellen is making what she titled ‘Red Toile’ because the book she picked up in 2008 had the quilt she wants to make on the cover in red. She is using blues with fabric she bought in 2009 for this quilt.

Of course she had to plan it out on paper first (as she always does).

Me, I started my granddaughter’s T-Shirt quilt. I have 5 blocks done so far.
(It is hard to get anything done when one has to run back and forth to the dealer for repairs…..)

I am also trimming up my cut off corners from my Snowball quilt I pieced years ago.

Mel has hers finished.

With her corners she made:

There were only 3 of us and this is the damage we did! YUMMMY!!!
The recipe for this Rueben Casserole can be found at:
Ellen used Jamon0126's recipe. (The host added extra rye bread, put the whole jar of dressing in, and added about twice the cheese.)
I personally always ask for my dressing on the side because I dip my Rueben sandwiches in the dressing so when I make this I will not add the dressing as the recipe calls for.
Have a great week!
D.G. L

Sunday, March 6, 2016


*Side note - This all started before my back issues....
I am still taking it easy and haven't done much of anything because of my back, which is starting to get 'back' to normal. Whew.....
must have thought it didn't need to do much of anything either because I had to take it in to be fixed.
It started to 'eat my fabric' again and continually had 'thread threw up'! It's been doing the same thing as when I first bought it (winding the thread around the bobbin post), very unhappy....
Not only that but the:
would just 'take off and go a zillion miles a minute without moving any fabric....which lead to even more 'threw up'!
I am wanting to sew a darker thread on the top in the colored fabric areas but the machine would not let me adjust any tension so this is what the back looks like:
It's a good thing I am not entering this quilt in any shows. I am so upset with the stitching (already 1/4 stitched out) I am tempted to rip out all the quilting.....NNNNOOOOOOO!!!!!
Maybe I should have just meandered the quilting because it started with me wanting to design my  own quilting pattern. I am not very proficient at free motion so I draw out the design and stitch over the lines. Because I needed 16 of the same design I figured I would draw it on dissolving paper. 'Wash-Away' to the rescue. I drew the 16 designs using a blue Sharpie marker so I would be able to see the lines:

and put them on the pile for the evening....must get up early for work....
As I was showering; it's the greatest place for me to think, I thought 'what if the Sharpie 'bleeds' onto the white fabric? I would die after all that hard work because I wouldn't know until I washed the quilt to dissolve the paper!
I made a test piece. The marker didn't 'bleed' onto the white BUT it did into the thread!

Back to the drawing board, this time using a 'Frixion' marker:

This worked well, I could see the design and if any paper was left on the fabric after tearing it away before washing the quilt I could just steam away the pen markings, (still afraid of colors bleeding into thread).
I pinned the papers in place and started quilting. WHAT?!?! I could hardly move the fabric for not being able to hold onto the slippery papers!!!
Back to the drawing board so to speak.
I finally cut out a stencil and put the design on the fabric the old fashioned way - chalking....
Old ways seem to be the best ways at times....
Speaking of entering quilt shows......
I went to my guild's quilt show. They kept advertising they were showing 200+ quilts.
I will give them that on a technicality because a quilt is a sewn sandwich.
But really?????:
 I counted 38 bed quilts. I saw mostly throws and wall hangings.

(Venting here):
Maybe I'm being biased here because  I volunteered to be the quilt show chair. I was for 3 months but the 'show board' did not want me to be chair person and made it next to impossible for me to do my job, so I resigned to the satisfaction of the guild president (at the time), treasurer, and program chair.
Four years ago when I was quilt show donation chair, the show took in just shy of 100 bed quilts, with wall hangings, throws, etc. bringing the total to well over 200+!
Enough of that....
I think this was my favorite quilt of the show:

All the little pieces and it looked like they embroidered the quilt motifs. I do want to try that in my life time.

If you want a stencil in a certain position and have to mark it to make sure it is in that position, put a piece of tape on the stencil and draw on the tape. When you are finished using the stencil for that project just remove the tape and your stencil good as new!

Have a great week!
D.G. L 

Sunday, February 28, 2016

I Thought

 I would be:
but a few weeks ago I picked up a case of tortillas and twisted at the same time.
This happened:
and am now not feeling 'Forever 18', more like 118!
All I have been doing is sitting in a chair after work on a heating pad. It seems to be helping and hopefully by next week I will feel like getting back in the sewing room.
I had better because I have a week off for spring break (3/5-13) and do not feel like sitting on a heating pad!
Have a great week!
D.G. L

Sunday, February 7, 2016

…Not Fun Anymore

Have you ever started a project and while working on it you become so stressed the project was more of a chore to do then when you started it? I started the 365 Challenge (See previous post) with exhilaration thinking by the end of the year I would have another new quilt. What’s a block a day?!?!  It didn’t take me long to find out how difficult it is to make a block a day.
If you remember I had a box of ‘like’ fabric and wanted to use it up so I thought this would be a great place for it. I am finding out I still need more fabric! What?!?! More fabric…..NNNNOOOO I am trying to get RID of fabric, not buy more!
Not only that but it is taking just about all my time to make a block a day. I have so many other projects I am working on and was becoming stressed for not being able to work on that day’s block and nothing else that I decided to put this particular 365 Challenge on the back burner…..the way, way back burner. I feel like such a quitter but I have to be realistic and set better goals for my life. For now I am still saving the pattern of the day in case I want to really do this quilt but I will not be stressed about it.

So my goal for Feb. is to finish quilting the ‘Star Cakes’ quilt I pieced together last year. I purchased a layer cake about 5-6 years ago in burgundies, browns, creams and greens designed by Lynn Hagmeier:
Obviously at that time I was into dark fabrics. I decided to use it and added some background fabric. The quilt went together sooo fast but the quilting is taking forever because I cannot decide on a design I like.
To give you an idea of what  the  'Star Cakes' pattern is here is a clip of a friend's:


I am loving making tops with the free pattern by Autumn:
My favorite so far is the dots and stripes.

After I purchased that fabric I noticed it was reversible so I used both sides! I still have more to make a dot top. If I were to make one with the stripes I would have people getting dizzy like:


That’s how hard the striped fabric is to look at!
Don't forget to leave a comment for a give away!


This tip is from:   
To wash your bra put your bra in a salad spinner, add some water, baby soap and spin!  
Have a great week!
D.G. L



Sunday, January 24, 2016




I have found out the hard way - do not wait until the end of the week to ‘catch up’ on the blocks in the 365 Challenge:
Finally got caught up on Sunday afternoon.


I have learned I have to take a half hour every day to cut out and sew that day’s block.

If you have not checked out Deb Tucker: you should. She designs amazing rulers  like thus one I started with. It is the ‘Tucker Trimmer’.  The whole dot is for squaring up blocks that are whole numbers and the half dot is for squaring up the half number blocks. Check out her site as there are many more rulers that save you a ton of time!

Just see how this ruler helps me trim up my block perfectly.

To save time cutting your HST apart, line them up overlapping a little on the ends.
Lay your ruler over the cut line (as much as your ruler will cover) and make one cut.
I had a bunch of HSTs cut in no time!
 A litte hint:  I do not stack the squares on top of each other in case any shift.

Have a great week!

D.G. L

Sunday, January 17, 2016


to Sue J. for helping me start depleting my stash.
Remember this?:
There will be one less item in this box as soon as Sue J. lets me know what she likes to work on.
I haven't worked on anything this week because it was my first week back to work after having a month off. I must be getting older I was exhausted every evening!
 After all the hype with this week's big Powerball, just think about this:

                      Fortune may find a pot, but it is your industry that must make it boil.
Have a great week!
D.G. L


Saturday, January 9, 2016

Glutton for Punishment

Or just plain CRAZY?

I decided to try and participate in the 365 Challenge:
I say try because I am not good at ‘stick-to-it-tiveness’ as you who have been following me have already figured out...I have trouble being Consistent. (Previous post). Somewhere on the Face Book post about this challenge I thought I saw ‘Farmer’s Wife’ mentioned. Because that quilt is on my To-Do list I imagined this would be a do-able way for me to eventually cross that one off my list.
*Getting off track just a little:
I am almost ashamed to show this but it is real in my world. When I see posts of sewing over cleaning I know they are posting  about me….
I store all my extra ‘stuff’ in the spare room and have to move it to my sewing room when the kids come home, hence:

A picture of my sewing room of which I am able to open the door 6 whole inches!
In a good way when the kids leave I have to move it all back again so this time  I started to ‘clean’ out the ‘junk’. (Not as much as I should have but it's a start.)  I decided to throw out the magazines I had on the shelves (of 2 bookcases). I kept telling myself whatever is in the magazines I can find ‘online’ and that made it a lot easier for me to toss them! It was such an exhilarating feeling when I dumped the 3 large boxes of magazines in the recycle bin. Now I have a little more room for ‘stuff’, ummm I mean projects….

ALL the selves were crammed FULL!
I digress. In moving, sorting, and organizing I found a box of what I call my Jo Morton fabric (even though not all of it is JM fabric) and some shirting fabric (which I put in it's own box - yeah organizing!). I thought this challenge would be a great place to use these fabrics:

and thus this Crazy Person was created…..
I have 4 blocks sewn, 4 blocks cut out and hope to cut the 2 blocks out this weekend, sew all and catch up.

I am also finishing a miniature. I love creating miniatures because they are tedious enough to challenge me and I can finish a ‘whole’ quilt faster than a queen sized quilt.
I used George Siciliano’s: ‘Birds in Paradise’ pattern and reduced his pattern.

George’s original 'quilt' finished at 12” x 15” (without borders) and mine with borders finished at approximately 9” x11”.
The chalk marks represent the quilting pattern but I am very unsure if I really want to quilt it this way. Does anyone have a better way to quilt this as I would love all ideas?

As stated I organized and ended up with things I just couldn’t throw away: patterns, projects I intended to do and now don't want to, ones I have already done, etc. If you would like a chance to receive FREE one of these (I have so many I just might make this a monthly event) leave a comment and my secret picker will draw a name.
Also let me know if you like to do Woolies, embroidery, paint, quilt, sew, whatever you like to do, I might just have something to help with your creation.

As I mentioned almost everything is online now even brain surgery! (Yes I looked it up on You Tube.)
Before I threw out the magazines I quickly went through them to see if there were any projects I might want to do in the future. I ripped out the patterns and I am keeping them in binders now. This takes up much less space... now more craziness can begin when I go to organize the binders!


Have a great week!
D.G. L