Thursday, May 31, 2012

Thursday and Project Updates

Back from a family get-together for Memorial Day Weekend and happy to report I have some finished quilts to show you.  But first the weekend update:

Basketball:  did you know that they make little bitty basketballs for little bitty kids?  I found this out when I went online to buy a basketball hoop for the boys.  I didn't want to buy Nerf type basketballs since the hoop would be outside.  Who knew that you can get small and smaller basketballs just right for little hands!?  They practiced dribbling and shooting baskets for hours.

Garage sale swingset:  I found a swingset for $25 at my neighbors garage sale and it was mostly assembled (that's even better than the low, low price).   The great gals who attended the mini-retreat helped me carry it home and my son put it back together.  A great deal of swinging occurred and I am quite sure that we got the entire $25 back in use over the weekend.  Don't you just love bargains at garage sales?

Now on to the quilting news.  I picked up my Stacked Block quilt and my Teal We Meet Again Wonky Plus Sign quilt from my long-arm quilter.  She had marked the Stacked Block quilt with blue washable marker, so I washed it after getting it home.  It's so big, I haven't been able to take a good photo yet - hopefully in next post.
Here is the Wonky Plus Sign quilt:

 Here's the back:

 Here's a close up of the quilting:

I also made my ABC blocks for the June BAMQG meeting (the letters are "Q" and "R") and here they are:

First is the "Q" block - Quilt In Light and Dark:

 It was difficult to find many choices for the "Q" block.  I think that I will use this block as a signature block for the quilt. 

And this is the "R" block - Right Hand of Friendship

And finally, I worked on Step 4 of the Liberated Round Robin 2 project.  Step 4 is the last step of this online improvisational bee.  The theme for Step 4 was "Serendipity".  My serendipity was to take a little block that I had made that was a wonky tree, which just happened to have the same purple fabric I used in the center of the project and added it to the upper left hand corner.  There could be more added but here is Step 4 right now:  

After I decide about adding any other elements to this round, I envision black binding to finish it.

Aaaaanyway, that's it from the Robertson household.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

A Road Trip to Gold Country with Lots of Food and Fabric

This past weekend was the mini-retreat with some of my Bay Area Modern Quilt friends at my house in Gold Country.  Five of us drove up on Friday afternoon (six if you count Boo) for a long weekend of sewing, eating, shopping, chatting and laughing.  This is Friday night's dinner:

We got up Saturday morning, went to a garage sale, took a long walk, ate yummie French toast and then went shopping.  Some people decided to sew rather than walk, but everyone went shopping!  First we went to downtown Sonora and the knit shop.  Then on to the new Joann's.  Everyone is so nice there.  They had all kinds of Denyse Schmidt fabric and we had piles of coupons, plus the sales people were so nice they gave us extra coupons.  Ruth and Sheetal created a complicated system of shared purchasing of fabric so as to maximize coupon usage.  By the end of that shopping experience, we had to stop for sustenance before we could go on.

Then we went to Bearly Quilting (the LQS) to see what they had and what was on sale.  I also was able to pick-up 2 quilts that my long arm quilter friend Dee Small had finished for me (more about that in another post).  More shopping was accomplished at Bearly Quilting and then we went "up the hill" to Twain Harte to shop at the Twain Harte Pharmacy.  Here's a photo of the group before they went in.

I wish I would have thought to take photos in the store, but I was too busy rooting through fabric to remember to do so.  You'll just have to come up and visit the Pharmacy yourself sometime to know what fabric goodies are there.  Lots of older modern fabric for $3.99 yard and newer modern fabric for $7.49 to $8.99.

After hours of shopping, we rolled down the hill and back to my house for snacks, looking at all our purchases and discussing what we should have bought that we left behind.  Amanda made wonderful fresh guacamole, which allowed us to put dinner off until about 8:30.  We had steaks and baked potatoes and salad and fresh strawberries and whipped cream.  Yum!  I'm pretty sure there was some ice cream eaten along the way with homemade blueberry sauce.


 I did not stay up late - opting to go to bed early-ish as I was making so many mistakes assembling my quilt back that it was clear I needed to stop.  Others continued to work and make progress:

On Sunday we got up and sewed as long as we could before the group had to start going home.  Amanda and I had to run to Joann's for emergency items.  Ruth and I stayed the longest, leaving about 2 for the Bay Area.  It was a fun filled weekend even if I didn't get as much sewing done as I had hoped - sometimes you have to trade off sewing time for fabric shopping time. 

Aaaanyway, that's it from the Robertson household.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy Mother's Day to You!

I don't have much quilting news.  Did want to wish everyone a Happy Mother's Day.  I went off to Reno, Nevada to visit my grandkids.

That's Connor with the tongue about to stick out and Mason saying "cheese"!  We're at the boys' school for Mother's Day lunch (Mommy is taking the picture) and then we went off for more adventures.

Amazing how much energy a 2.5 and 4.5 year old can have!  We crammed alot into a few short days.  Connor got his big boy 2 wheel bike.  Mason is working on his tricycle skills.  We took walks and set up the new swimming pool.  Planted flowers and a new tree and set up the new lawn furniture...whew!

The ride up was beautiful.  Still snow in the high country (sorry for the photo through the window - I didn't want to stop!)

Here's Boo in the backseat wishing he were anywhere but in the truck:

So, again, I wish you a Happy Mother's Day.  Hope you enjoyed your time with your family and also enjoyed your special day.

Aaaanyway, that is it from the Robertson household.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

WIP Wednesday - COLOR

I have been working on my Liberated Round Robin2 block, adding step 3 - COLOR.  You can find the blog at:
Go have a look when you have a minute.  This is not a traditional round robin where you send your block to the next person and receive a block from someone else to add a round - you keep your own block and add rounds based on the focus of individual "steps", culminating in a finished design after 4 steps.

Well, I took that COLOR concept literally and after adding a narrow band of black, I added the biggest orange chevrons I could get my hands on.  Actually, I first made some wonky log cabins for the round, but I made the first one too big and decided to stop and reconsider and well, honestly, the deadline was upon me and I didn't want to be late, so I'd rather do something than nothing (have you ever had that decision making experience?).  Hence the orange chevrons.

So here was my block at the end of step 2:

And here it is after the chevron addition (yeeeeha!):

Not really happy with it, so I'm thinking I'll take off the chevrons and add some wonky trees and then the chevrons.  I'm not giving up on them - I just think the trees need to be inside them and not outside them.  If I haven't confused you enough, I'll stop talking about this and show you a photo after the "chevronectomy", if I actually take off the chevrons and add the trees...because I didn't have enough chevron material and I had to piece them and it took a really long time to match everything up at the seams.  Hmmmm, maybe those trees are gonna look just fine outside the chevrons! 

What do you think - should I rippppp out the chevrons and add the trees, or just keep moving on?  Or do you need to see the trees first to make the decision?

P.S.  I am following the directions for the wonky trees from Gwen Marston and Freddie Moran's book, Collaborative Quilting (here's the link)

                       Collaborative Quilting

Great book full of wonderful ideas for improvisational quilting using bright, bright colors!

That is my work in progress for Wednesday.  Very laid back. 

Aaaaanyway, that's it for May 9th from the Robertson household.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Trials and Tribulations

Tribulations:  Noun
Definition:  (1) A cause of great trouble or suffering;
                 (2) A trying experience

That is exactly what my days have been like for the last two weeks.  I've been in trial in one case and in days of lengthy settlement meetings in another.  And I got the flu in the middle of it all.  So very little sewing has happened in my world.

Now the good news is that the trial concluded, the second matter settled late on Friday and I am now free to whine less and sew more!

I managed to get my May "O" and "P" blocks completed for the Bay Area Modern Quilt Guild quiltalong (we are using modern fabrics in traditional blocks, working our way through the alphabet, two letters at a time).  I had to make them the morning before the meeting, so I went pretty simple.  My "O" block is Old Maid's Puzzle and my "P" block is Pinwheel.  Made them both in less than 2 hours between 7 and 9 a.m.

That's it for my sewing - pretty lame, but that was all I could get done.

This is my "O" block - Old Maid's Puzzle:

 This is my "P" block - Pinwheel:

I did pick-up my Joel Dewberry Sampler quilt from my longarm quilter friend, Dee Small.  I really like the way it turned out.  When I first put the sampler together, I was a little overwhelmed with it - so visually active (crazy busy is what I really mean!).  I added a few borders to try to settle it down a little, which did help.  Somehow the quilting and the binding helped to pull it together even more.  These photos were taken at Saturday's BAMQG meeting.

May 2012 Meeting

Here's a close up:

May 2012 Meeting

And, here's the back:

May 2012 Meeting

For the first time in a very long time, I do not have any bee deadlines or swap deadlines looming over me.  I do need to add my 3rd round to my block for the Liberated Round Robin group.  And I'm hoping to create a few blocks for the Quilt Con challenge.  Otherwise, it's finishing up old projects and dreaming up new ones.

What are you working on?  Finishing up any projects or dreaming up any new ones you want to share?  Fill me in on the details, please!

Aaaanyway, that's it from the Robertson household. 

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

And the Winner Is...

Thank you all for particpating in my first ever give away.  Who would not want to win a copy of Quilting Modern by Jacquie Gering and Katie Pedersen? 

I read all the comments and was so impressed with the entries.  Since I wanted this to be a pay it forward give away, I finally decided that the winner is Karen - who wrote that her 4 daughters want her to make cool quilts.  Hopefully the girls will benefit from cool quilts and will perhaps become cool quilters themselves!
Anyway, I am sending an email to Karen to get her mailing info and get the book out in the mail.

Thanks again for participating.  Please stay tuned for the next give away!