A Storm in the Night


We weathered our first storm, in my Little Cabin in the Woods.

My companion, Sadie, a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, is afraid of storms.

IMG_8723She can hear them coming long before I can. I can usually tell when one is approaching because Sadie typically spends her time curled up underneath my kitchen chair. When storms approach she leaves her quiet little place of solitude to be by my side. If I’m within in touching distance she will get as close as she can possibly be. So close that it seems every ounce of air has been sucked away and there is absolutely nothing between us. If you touch her little body you can feel her heart racing. Her breathing quickens and her eyes open very wide. She gazes up as if to say, “Save me from the storm.”

During yesterday’s storm she curled up into a little ball beneath my makeshift sewing space. If I happened to leave the area, so did Sadie. When I returned she did as well. I feel sad for her because of her fear. If only I could reassure her that all would be fine. Unfortunately it’s difficult to relay that to her. Because of her disease (more about that some other time) it’s very difficult to find a place on her body that you can touch that won’t make her feel uncomfortable.

IMG_0154The storm passed as quickly as it approached. In no time Sadie was once again back beneath her favorite safe place. Together we weathered the storm safely tucked inside my Little Cabin in the Woods.

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A Breath of Fresh Air


IMG_8891We’ve all worked and played very hard this week so let’s take a few moments to take a deep breath, let out a big sigh and pause for refreshment. Here’s to you and all that you have accomplished!IMG_8900IMG_8907IMG_8911

 

 

Four Score Quilt Update


On June 7, 2015 a mention was made and a photo was included of my Four Score Quilt by Judy Gauthier on her Bungalow Quilting and Yarn website. You can imagine my excitement when I received the update in my email inbox. Judy had taken the photo when I visited her shop earlier this spring. Here’s the blurb¬†she included with the photo:

The Madison Modern Quilt Club had a sew day at my shop a few weeks ago. Cindy Anderson of Janesville made this wonderful quilt with fabrics from the Bungalow. No, she didn’t make it in one day, but she brought it to show me that she had used all of our fabrics. It is absolutely lovely Cindy.

Judy Gauthier @ http://www.bungalowquilting.com

This is the photo she posted

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Four Score


One of my favorite quilt shops, Life’s A Stitch, closed recently. When the news first came out I was absolutely shocked and at the same time completely heartbroken. Through my patronage of their establishment I had grown fond of the employees. So much so that I almost felt like we were friends.

The owner of Life’s A Stitch Quilt Shoppe was also a quilt pattern designer. She had a wonderful inventory of traditional type patterns. Her patterns were offered for sale under the name Washboard Quilts. Whether they are still available today I don’t know.

Quite sometime ago I purchased one of Washboard Quilts patterns called Four Score. I first came across it while shopping in the quilt shoppe. A sample of the quilt hung on display in a prominent area. The minute I walked inside the quilt caught my eye. I was drawn to the design like a magnet to metal. The pattern as well as the fabrics were so eye-catching.

Life’s A Stitch had kits put together for the pattern. While I absolutely loved the combinations they had chosen I wasn’t sure they would blend well with my decor. Instead I opted to make my own selections but not right then. As is often the case, the pattern sat in my TBS (To Be Started) basket. It languished there until my oldest daughter and I decided to join in on a day of sewing in Ripon, Wisconsin at a modern fabrics quilt store called Bungalow Quilting and Yarn. I took the pattern with me with the intention of purchasing fabric for the Four Score quilt.

My daughter and I had a blast pulling bolts of fabric from the shelves. Exactly how many different colors were needed I don’t recall. What I do remember is that we had stacks and stacks of bolts precariously perched trying not to topple them over. Something else I don’t remember is how much the fabric cost. That little tidbit is irrelevant because no matter how much the damage was I was pressing on with this train and not getting off the tracks.

The pattern itself was relatively easy to follow. The rows of quilt blocks are set on point. Getting use to putting them together was the trickiest part. I’m a fairly quick learner so mastering that technique was a fairly short learning curve. Before sewing the blocks into rows I laid them out on my living room floor. Through my talented discerning eye I was able to juggle blocks around forming what I thought was a very pleasing arrangement.

One of the Many Arrangements

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In April of 2014 I packed up and moved our belongings to a new home. Before moving I frantically finished and quilted as many items as possible on my long-arm quilt machine. Not knowing how soon after moving in my machine would be reassembled and back in business I wanted to make certain all of my projects that were waiting as well as my customers quilts were done. The binding on my Four Score quilt was finished just days before we moved.

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I’m so pleased with the quilt’s outcome. The quilt was made with my husband in mind. He retired after 30+ years in law enforcement. Throughout his career he was employed by several different departments. Many of the colors chosen reflect the colors of the uniforms he wore.

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On June 8, 2015 I opened my Facebook account to a wonderful surprise. Earlier this spring I attended a Sew Day at Bungalow Quilting and Yarn, another one of my very favorite fabric stores. Taken with me was my finished Four Score quilt. I had been wanting to share my finished project with Judy, the owner of the shop. I knew she would want to see how the pile of fabrics had been used. While there she took a photo of myself and the quilt.

As any curious person would do, ever since that day I had been watching her site for my photo. There’s something about seeing the fruits of your labor shared with the world that makes you feel all giddy and excited. Well on June 8, 2015 I was absolutely thrilled to see, there in print, on the internet, MY quilt. You can see the post here.

Without further delay, here’s my Four Score quilt. Enjoy!

IMG_8394Vital Statistics:

  • Quilt Size – 77″ x 91 3/4″
  • Hours Spent Quilting – 14.75
  • Number of Quilt Stitches Applied – 315,751
  • Thread Used – Omni Goose & Perma Core Black
  • Stitch Patterns Used – Swirls & Bubbles

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Main Street


This wall hanging was my first, from scratch, free-form quilt. I admit is does look a bit bazaar and out of the ordinary, but I don’t care. Whether the masses like it or not has no bearing on my joy. It’s 100% me. But enough about that, let’s get on with dissecting this masterpiece.

IMG_6700The only instructions I had to follow were those written in Rayna’s book Creating Your Own Free-Form Quilts. There were no preplanned shopping lists, and no cutting or piecing instructions. There wasn’t even a photo or diagram illustrating what the final outcome would be, just my imagination.

First on my agenda was the acquisition of fabric. Finding that resource was easy. All I had to do was shop my plastic totes and baskets filled with fabrics. I’ve been quilting since the early 1990’s so my stash has become quite voluminous. Lucky for me they were fairly organized according to color. Also brought out was my stockpile of randomly sized scraps. The scraps would be my main focus. If at all possible I wanted to use up as many as I could.

So where does one begin when adventuring into the unknown? If I had UFO’s to re-purpose that would be one thing but I didn’t. Not even one orphaned quilt square. Which meant I had to start by sewing together two pieces of fabric. From there I added the third, fourth, fifth, etc.

There’s a saying my mother taught me when I was first learning to knit, “As ye knit, so shall ye rip.” In other words, as you knit, as with everything, eventually you will make a mistake which means backtracking and ripping out stitches. I didn’t do any ripping of seams but I did do my share of slicing and dicing as my project went through its metamorphosis.

Although one glance at the wall hanging might lead you to believe it has no organization, there are definite sections or areas. During the initial phase I assembled and stitched together strips of fabric. Once carefully pressed, holding my ruler perpendicular to the seams, I used my rotary cutter to cut new strips of fabric. My self-made fabric strips were then used just like any other fabric scrap would be. Often times I added a strip of material on all four edges, pressed my seams then repeated the process all over again. These sections, while not being anywhere near “square,” served as a jumping-off-point. From there those quilt blocks were transformed even further by slicing them into sections, adding more fabric, slicing and adding fabric once again. A close inspection of my wall hanging will yield evidence of those refracted sections scattered about the landscape. I continued with that rhythm until I was satisfied with the outcome.

I’ve named my wall hanging Main Street because it reminds me of the streets and intersections you might see from an aerial view of a typical metropolis. The quilt sandwich was stitched together using a square stippling pattern. I really like how creative I can get when using this method. It enables me to let my imagination run wild. No two sections are alike. That’s also another reason why I do free-form long-arm quilting, and why I don’t have a computer with preloaded stitched on my machine.

Main Street (1)Vital Statistics:

  • Quilt Size – 33 1/4″ x 50 1/2″
  • Hours Spent Quilting – 1 1/2
  • Quilt Stitch Pattern – Square Stippling
  • Number of Quilt Stitches Applied – 41,248
  • Thread Used – Perma Core Flag Blue

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