Saturday, April 30, 2011

Paducah 3

I guess I could do these posts in chronological order...would make more sense no? While here in Paducah I suffer from sensory overload so making sense is much more difficult than it should be...but here goes.

Day one I signed up for an early lecture on Civil War quilts however the presenter was not able to make it due to the weather so Sue Reich stepped in and presented Quilts of World War II. I went to the exhibit last year but it was still wonderful to hear her speak on the quilts and their history. (I believe many of the lectures are steaming on the AQS website so you may be able to see it online!)

She curated the Antique Quilt exhibit at the Rotary again this year. The theme was quilted gardens. Again a wonderful exhibit. Some familiar patterns and some quirky ones that just make you smile. And as always the human stories and historical context was laid out for us. The quilt photos in this post are a sample of what was on display...

I met up with janette Dwyer, The Farmer's Daughter, who I met last year in the appraising class. She introduced me to Merrily McKim Tuohey who is the granddaughter of Ruby McKim. We went to the pie place near the giant cow (if you've been to Paducah that makes sense!) and had lunch with Merrily, her Mom and Merrrily's daughter. They told me about how they saved the origianal patterns and other ephemera of ruby McKim's from being destroyed after her death. They are self publishing the old series like Rolly Polly, The stories of the bible, and Alice in Wonderland. The books are really nice (I bought three...I love Ruby McKim embroidery patterns and see them often in vintage quilts around Georgia.) She has a website

Janette and I in the back and Ruby McKim's Great-granddaughter, granddaughter and daughter in law.

Well off to down a protien shake with some more coffee, load the car and get down to the quilt museum for my test!

Paducah Post 2

I'm being good tonight and staying in to rest up for tomorrow's appraiser examination part two...sounds like a cross between B horror movie or an Army addmitance physical. As strange as it may seem I am a bit excited about it (in a good way.) Maybe it is just that I have been waiting a year to take it or maybe it is just I get an hour to talk about 4 quilts...quilts and talking are maybe my favorite things (if I could have a cup of coffee with me they would have a problem getting me out of the room!)

Hexegon Flowers from the Susan Reich exhibit at the Paducah Rotary Club

As Mary Kerr, one of the Certified Appraisers, told us "you are either ready or you're not." Guess that means cramming tonight is out of the question! So instead of cracking the books I am going to relax with my big cup of herbal tea and post some more photos of here in Paducah.

First Congratulations to Sandra Starley, another appraiser, and her Virginia is for Lovers. It was part of the Alliance for American Quilts Challenge and came in third! Here is a photo of the top quilts in this challenge. There were a lot of really nice quilts (of course I was partial to Sandra's)!

The Alliance Challenge exhibit was out at the old Circuit City-alternate site. There were a lot of vendors there as well. Paula and I got to meet Lori Smith. I have a dozen of her patterns at home so it was nice to put a person to the work! (and yes, I picked up a couple of patterns.)

(Me, Lori, and Paula)

There were a lot of wool vendors at this show. This is something we don't see a lot of down in Augusta Georgia so I picked up a bit. I am tempted to try Lori's "A celebration in appplique" in wool....could be fun!

More tomorrow....

Friday, April 29, 2011


Sorry I haven't posted as promised but as you may have heard things are a bit different here at the AQS Show in Paducah this year. It started out easy enough. The first 7 hours of our 9 hour drive was smooth all the way. Then we hit Nashville. I watched a tractor trailer demolish 2-3 cars only feet away from us.

A quilt only question, "do you clean quilt rooms?"

Thought we had dodged a bullet...then an hour or so up the road the sky turned dark. We turned on the radio for local news and all we could hear was the loud beeping sound of the National Weather Alert System. They preceeded to name countied in Tennesee and Kentucky that were under a tornato warning. This is really helpful if you know what county you are in...which we didn't.

About 20 minutes into listening to a buch of local weather and news guys toss around towns and streets and counties finally one of them decided to let us know what exits the tournado (which had now been spotted) had decided to touch down in....luckily we had just passed that exit. We may rename this the "dumb luck" tour!

Great Vendors...

All that aside the folks from AQS are doing a great job of keeping the show going. I am sort of exhausted so not too many photos now...promise lots later...

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Happy Easter...

We have perfect weather here in Augusta for Easter Weekend. The sun is out and with all the rain we had yesterday the yard is bright green!I spent some time out the garden this morning getting some plants in and pulling some weeds. Hope it will be enough to keep the place from going crazy while I'm away next week.

Can you believe the AQS show in Paducah is next week? It has felt so far away for so long! I packed my clothes last night (am I just a bit anxious!) and pulled some hand sewing projects (like there is a such lack of fabric and thread in Paducah next week that I have to pack some?! Just so you know I am the person on the plane who always has food packed in her briefcase!)

I packed my "appraiser" bag last week but will run through it again tonight. And probably again tomorrow night. Yes I am nervous. I am so glad I am driving there with my friend Paula. Driving means I don't have to be so careful about what and how much I pack...when I doubt toss it in the car!

Knock on wood and hang the rosary beads out the window - my eyes are doing good and my legs as good as can be expected. If I pace myself I should be able to get through the week. My handwriting is good for about 10 minutes...guess I'll need to keep my answers short on the written portion of the exam! (after that they may need to bring a cryptographer in to decipher it! )I did a lot of catching up this week...I mailed my quilt to Utah fullfilling my promise to the Quils For Leukemia group. Two quilts were mailed off to Quilters Newsletter for Japan. The quilt in the photo was made by my friend Ille. (I've posted photos of the brown on I made in earlier posts...)Now off to try a new recipe for Strawberry bread...they are coming in great this year! Nothing beats a local berry!

Happy Easter!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Memory failure...

After posting the Ocean Wave quilt from Statesboro I decided to pull two of my OW quilts from my own collection. The memory failure wasn't when I went to look for was how I remembered them! I had told several of you that my quilt had 1-1/2 and 2-1/2 inch hsts...well it is more like 1-1/4 and 3 inches. (And that my friends is why we do appraisals and documentation on our quilts!)
First is this turn of the century OW with the large "mostly" 3 inch HST. This came from Pennsylvania (doesn't it just scream it!) I purchased it in Gettysburg at a street fair in the early 90's.

It was definitely a "I love these fabrics" purchase. The mix of pinks with yellows, blues and blacks just makes me smile. Also, the maker wasn't too concerned about the dark and light placement. Sometimes that can make this pattern look very formal but when you ignore the (repeat after me..."this does not have to be perfect"...just feel the stress leave your shoulders...)The second quilt was purchased in the same area of Pennsylvania around the same time. It is from the 1940's and uses a peach sateen cotton that still shows the pencil quilting marks. The hst measure 1-1/4 finished...we are talking tiny! I haven't had this quilt out in awhile and can honestly say I like it better now than when I bought it! Isn't that a great feeling!
The fabric choices have a rather modern feel...a bit like the Material Obsession books that I am drawn to right now. (check out the red polka dot in this quilt...I'm using lots of that right now!)

If you are thinking of making your own Ocean Waves quilt you may want to start at Bonnie Hunter's website,, where she has a free pattern for one using 1-1/2 inch finished HST (of course that can be changed! Personally I am leaning towards the 2 inch like the Statesboro quilt!)
I was asked in my last post if my cats like quilts...of course. They also like to have their photos taken with the quilts. Can be quite a challenge to do quilt photos sessions!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Guild Program

Yesterday I went down to Statesboro Georgia to meet with the quilters of Staying in Stitches. Lots of talented quilters in this group!I went down a bit early to view some quilts at Pauline's house. The quilts were really sewing studio to die for. Gave me lots of incentive to get organized. Though it was more than organized - it was comfortable and cute! Sorry no photos....but mine will be looking like it soon and will send pic then (ok, I can hear the laughter already!)

We then went over to the college museum where a couple of Pauline's quilts were being displayed along with artifacts from a local civil war archeological site. Her scrappy Ocean waves has great fabrics in it! You can study it for ages and still find new pieces to marvel at!

The program went well. I brought fewer quilts with but still found myself going a bit over time. But as long as there are quilts to look at or questions I'm happy to talk! During break they had some delicious trifles - chocolate or fresh strawberry. Strawberry fields around this area are bursting so how could I resist!
On a different is a photo of Brownie (11 years old) and Dobby 5-1/2 months old) taken just yesterday. They now both weigh 7-1/2 pounds...though by now I'm sure Dobby has already grown a bit more....

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Day of Rest...not so much

Today is supposed to be a day of rest but since I am sitting on a To-do list longer than my arm I've got to get a bit of work in before the list is dragging on the floor and trips me up!I've already spend a few hours on the deck preparing for a guild program next Tuesday on Quilt Appraisals. This did double duty as review for the exam later this month...cannot believe it is finally here! (Dobby likes to sit play on the deck when I have my morning coffee...can you believe how much he has grown!)
Also the kitchen needs to be cleared of fabric and quilt-y stuff before I leave for Paducah which means I need to start now! And speaking of "kitchen fabric," I finished this week's CW Block of the week. I pieced it a bit differently from the directions - instead of sewing a 2-1/2 square to a 2-1/2 inch HST I sewed a 2-1/2 inch square on the diagonal to the 4-1/2 inch strip. That gives the stripe continuity...and me less of a headache! This may be one of my favorite blocks in the growing pile!

Finally, the dreaded spring cleaning of the closet. Temps here are already into t-shirt weather so the heavy sweaters and coats have to move to the to shelves.

So with this...I'd best be off seeing to chores...even if it is a day of rest!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

A finish!

Take a good look cause you don't see many of these on this blog...a completely finished quilt! Binding and everything!I have several in the binding goal this year is to reduce the number so quilts don't spill out of the top! This one fell on my head the other day (quilting poltergeist perhaps?) as I moved some things around in my sewing room. Guess it really was tired of being an "almost quilt."

Speaking of almost quilts...the Quilt for Leukemia project is now quilted and I will be putting the binding and label on this weekend! My goal is to get it in the mail on Monday morning. Could we have two finishes in one month? Be still my heart...
I have a new project going from the bits left over on the cutting table. It comes from the second Material Obsession book. It is a spider web with a crumb/random pieces connecting block. To give it some continuity I am using red in the center of each of the webs. I used lots of older fabrics for the foundation piecing so cleared some hard to move stash....I have a feeling this is going to be a really heavy quilt! And just in case you are wondering...this will not be finished this month....

Sunday, April 10, 2011

What is on the cuttig table?

There was a post the other day where the writer mused how the two projects on her cutting table sometimes got mixed up. She was going to limit herself to one cutting project at a time. That got me to wondering...just how many projects are currently on my cutting board?The most obvious is the 6x6 Material obsession project. This had been stalled due to running out of the one consistent fabric in the quilt...luckily a friend had a fat quarter of it which is just enough. (I cut that after several deep breath and as many cups of coffee...)The scraps from the MO project were used as leaders and enders to make a scrappy spider web (also in on of the MO books.) The scraps got big enough that I did a couple of test blocks yesterday. Jury is out if I like it well enough to finish.

Also am cutting binding for three quilts. The green is for this Spring Winds quilt (that has been quilted for almost 6 months and just needs binding!) Also in the binding que is a Crab Apple tree and a Scrappy trip around the world. I'm also making the binding for my Q4L which is still being quilted but I want to get it in the mail this week so it will jump the que the minute it is off the machine!

Since I started the CW block of the week on Barbara Brackman's blog it seems like there is always a bit of civil war reproduction fabric on the cutting board. Last week I made from her blog and another with a print of General Lee. The quilt is going to my FIL and his family is from Virginia.
There is also some black Moda that I am using for sashing on those Halloween Arrowhead blocks.
And some 9-patches from garden-y type fabric left-overs for something in the future. They may be use as a border or maybe as a quilt of their 9-patches....

As I looked over the projects I asked myself "do I ever mix up my projects?" Of course I do but that is a good thing. How else would I know that a bit of the plaids I'm using in my MO project would work for a CW block of the month and the some CW reproduction fabric is ok in those scrappy leaders and enders. My cutting table is the mixing bowl of my scrappy quilts.

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Catch-up blocks...

The past few days I got caught up on some promise blocks - a couple for birthday quilts and a couple just because!

I can show a few of the b-day blocks since the recipients already know about them...This is for a member of our guild who loves Moda - particularly the red and greens that were so popular for several years. Fortunately I have a large stash of them. I did try and mix them up a bit though (note the civil war background with a stripe!)....She also loves Churn Dash or Hole in the Barn Door style blocks so I went with slight variations...

The next is for a quilter who loves holidays and Sunbonnet sue. No brain-er as to what holiday I chose!

On a totally different guild last night my friend Shannon showed her first "Bonnie Hunter" quilt. Didn't it come out great!
Dobby is turning into a real quilter cat. He doesn't like to be touched but he wants to be in the same room as his humans. He has found a perch in my sewing room where he can keep an eye on me!

Saturday, April 02, 2011

Five good reasons....

I habitually use my kitchen counter for cutting fabric. I use the excuse that the lighting is really good in there (which is true) however the real reason is my sewing room is just too crowded!

So in an effort to get myself worked up to cleaning and organizing my sewing room I made a list of five good reasons that quilting and active kitchens don't mix....

5. Your DH cannot tell the difference between a pizza cutter and rotary cutter...tomato sauce is really difficult to get out the blade (fleece will get most of it out but then you can't get it out of the fleece....ask me how I know.)

4. Spilled coffee can camouflage even the brightest Kaffe flowers so they hide well in the civil war reproduction pile....heck, it can make anything look vintage...

3. It gets tiring running a magnet over the counters before you cook dinner but since you regularly pick up a half dozen pins you know you have to keep doing it....

2. Father-in-laws don't know the difference between a dishrag knitted for you by a friend and the civil war block you made last his world they both are good for washing dishes...

1. To most of the population a miniature quilt left near a stove looks a lot like a potholder...

So I guess unless I plan to not let anyone into my kitchen I'd best get back to work on that sewing room.....