Saturday, April 30, 2016


well...maybe not victory as in i defeated something.
more as in victory i accomplished something i didn't think was possible.

*deep breath*

the short story:

my Dan's Climb pattern is going to be in Keepsake Quilting.

i'm feeling ridiculously giddy.
they wanted Jack of Hearts too but the fabric line for that quilt is no longer available.
which makes me a wee bit sad.
but the Dan's Climb news overcomes the sad by about one thousand million times.

this only adds to my other exciting news:

i've signed a contract with a publisher!!
all the bits i've been struggling with (writing, illustrations, editing, printing, barcodes...)
i will get all the professional help and advice i've been needing.

and as if that isn't enough,
my mum's the word is finished (you know, the one i've been posting about) though i think i forgot to photograph it.
plus, i'm about two feet from the finished binding 
on a quilt for a new pattern (no photo forthcoming yet).
and...well, i've been very busy conquering my stack of to-do's.
there will be a lot of good stuff coming up shortly.

once i can get D's attention for a couple of hours we'll even have the website ready to go.

when that happens we'll post about the kits for The Kind-ly Pinwheels quilt,
the wide back fabrics and so much more.

:D, quilts for this week...

Joan's Hawaiian Quilt
with Breath of the Gods pantograph in a dark gray thread

Beths' horse quilt
with Dusty Miller pantograph in a variegated tan thread

bindings ready for their quilts!

Rhonda's minkee baby quilt for her new granddaughter
with Double Bubble pantograph in a pink thread

Beth's quilt
with Mid-Century pantograph and navy blue thread
it's been a VERY good week over here.
now i'm off to get ready for ballet, homeschool prep and a binding for my Elevation quilt.

may your day be filled with wonderful blessings.

~ h

Saturday, April 23, 2016

dish soap

yesterday, as i was getting ready to go to the ballet with friends,
chloe comes into my room with chocolate all over her jeans and said,
"i dropped the koala cube tray after i put the chocolate it in." *might* need a little back story here.

the girls and i can not have dairy.
at all.
no milk of any sort.
which makes chocolate either expensive or nonexistent.

a few years ago my friend made some chocolate and gave it to me.
homemade chocolate.
without dairy.
or high fructose corn syrup.

seriously folks.
it's amazing.

now back to the story.
about an hour before the spill chloe comes to me and asks if she can make chocolate.
of course! i say.
i give her some direction and leave her to it.
(don't freak out people...she's 13.
chocolate shouldn't be difficult.)

then she comes to me and says,
"i just had a brilliant idea.
i can put it in the koala cube maker."

some australian friends of ours gave us a silicone ice cube tray.
it is a brilliant idea, i say.

and off she goes.

so 4:30 rolls around.
my friends are arriving.
i'm not finished.
chloe enters the room and discloses that when she was transferring the koala ice cube maker to the little cutting board it tipped off (it's not the sturdiest thing) onto the floor and sent chocolate everywhere.
we chat about the situation and she leaves to clean it up.
i finish up, my friends and i head downstairs to see...

my child "skating" around the kitchen floor on a washcloth with dish soap bubbles surrounding her feet.
the ENTIRE floor, people, covered in bubbles.

she is having a glorious time.

pause right here for a moment.
think of what you would do.
there are four reactions i think would occur:
1) yelling.  and lots of it.
2) grab some towels, kick said child out of room and clean it up for her.
3) grab some towels, throw them at her and walk away in disgust.
4) join her in the fun.

i'm sure there's more.
but that's what went through my head.

it was as if i was going through the list and ticking items off the list as unacceptable.
i've renounced yelling.  so...not going to happen.
grabbing towels seemed like the right thing to do but doing it myself wasn't going to work nor joining in on the fun as i was heading off to the ballet (and late at that)!
and walking off in disgust wasn't so bright.

the look of joy on her face!

have you ever "skated" around on bubbles.'s seriously fun.

so...i told her daddy would be home soon and to do her best.
i smooched her and left.

the floor looked clean this morning.
but as one would guess she didn't do a good job.
which is fine...

so we got down on the floor together and i showed her how to clean soap off the floor.
and we discussed better ways of cleaning coconut oil up.

so instead of getting the machine fired up and ready to go this morning.
and instead of blogging about quilts that were done tis week.
i'm here...writing about my beautiful girl who is 100% 13.

maybe next week i'll be able to post some photos for you.


~ h

p.s. i finished my mum's the word quilt.
binding AND label.
plus got the label on another quilt, so it's all done.
plus quilted the little quilt i made at retreat and got the binding on it.
i'll post photos of these finishes next saturday.
what i'm currently working on is my American Flag Rag Quilt.
the goal is to get it finished so we can put the pattern on the website.
that's nearly done!
oh the hoops people...they are unending!

Saturday, April 16, 2016

this weeks happenings

i've had a lot going on this week.
surprisingly, it's all been steps forward.
not one has been backwards.
and that, my friends, is a huge sigh of relief.

jackie's farm girl vintage barn silo quilt
yippee ki yay pantograph with white thread
aside from quilting client quilts i've managed to make some thank you gifts,
finish two baby presents,
tidy my office and get some gardening done.
i don't say all that to make anyone jealous...i think i'm reiterating that i can, in fact, cross more things off my to-do list than things that get on it.

you see, for several years now i've been so overwhelmed 
that i'd stash stuff places with the intent in getting to it "later".
but "later" never happened.
it was bad.

i was finding photos that i meant to mail to people.
clipping the dogs nails.
projects that were stacked up but never touched.
stuff to go to a thrift shop.
re-potting plants...

the list is huge.
and it, at times, feels quite overwhelming.
but i decided that if i start a to-do list (i found a pad at target in the $1 bin),
keep a running list of what needs to be done 
(not writing EVERYTHING down at once but only when i think of it),
then maybe, just maybe, i can sort things out as i go.

it's been amazing.
yesterday i crossed off FIVE things.
that didn't include things like washing my shower curtain.
or making a little thank you gift for one of my pattern testers.

my attitude towards the to-do list is changing.
it's no longer an unyielding slave master.
but my tool in sorting myself out.

and that feels really good.

and it means i can work.
when i'm able to work unhindered it's a soothing balm to my soul.
i think it's because i'm able to do the work my hands were created to do.

below are some of the projects i've worked on the last two weeks.
you'll note that my mum's the word is now quilted!!
at the moment the binding has been attached and i've started hand stitching the binding.
by next week's post there will be a completed picture of it.
*so excited*

the very last picture you'll see is my little cuticus maximus standing next to bolts of fabrics.
*nervous excitement*
we've been "threatening" for about 6 months to start carrying kits for my patterns.
well...we did it.
kits aren't made yet.
it's on my to-do list (ha!) and i'm planning on tackling that on monday.

we're also getting wide-back fabrics in!
5 so's a start.

i'll post a picture of those next week too.

so there you go.

this week's happenings in a nutshell.

i hope you have a lovely weekend!

~ h

katie's modern quilt
bollywood pantograph with white thread

my mum's the word!
passion fruit pantograph with a pink/orange variegated thread

jackie's lilac heart quilt
butterfly bliss pantograph with a variegated light purple thread

helen's star quilt
mistletoe pantograph with a dusty pink thread

helen's walkabout quilt
dusty miller pantograph with a dark blue thread

jackie's bloom quilt
belladonna pantograph with a light yellow thread

dawn's hawaiian snowball quilt
bell blossom pantograph with white thread

nancy's star quilt
independence day pantograph with red thread

barbara's flower quilt
seafoam pantograph with a light grey thread
max is introducing tree party fabrics with polka dot wide back fabric.

Friday, April 8, 2016

banish the ruffle!

ruffles, my friends, are for dresses.
or shirts.
or coats...
heck, you can put them on unders, socks, hats...
but they are not...i repeat...NOT for quilts.

well...okay...i've seen ruffles used in quilts.
but no longarm quilter will ever have a happy word for borders that ruffle.
they are a serious pain in the a...

so here's the deal.
even if your quilts aren't perfectly straight there is a very simple way to banish those ruffles from your quilt borders.

1)  cut all your border strips.

2) sew them together.
i prefer diagonal when joining pieces but straight seams work too.

3) measure the long seam NEXT to the raw edge you will be sewing the border to.
see mine?
it says 72".

4)  measure border strip and cut to that number.
usually i put a pin in the border strip marking the number.
then i take it to my cutting mat and cut it right there.

5)  pin the border to the raw edge that it matches.
pin the outsides first, then the middle, then the quarters and, finally, the eighths.

6)  sew border to body of the quilt.

7)  fold the border fabric over and press.
no need to press border seams open.

quilts with borders that don't ruffle are easy to quilt on a longarm.
they stay square (no angel wings) and there's no tucks.

(note: the inside white border is the one i was demonstrating.  it can barely be seen in these photos!  the outside border is a striped material and i did miter that border.  so, one is square and one is not!)

here's a pdf that you are more than welcome to download.

have a lovely weekend!

~ h

Saturday, April 2, 2016

quilts for the week

i keep wondering if it's appropriate to have that as a regular title...

other than a lot of gardening (our yard makes my heart happy with all its' pretty blooming flowers), i really don't have a lot to say.

well, okay.
that's not entirely true.

i've had quite a few people ask about borders and backings.
so i will start that post after i show you what i worked on this week...

joan's motorcycle quilt.
quilted with double bubble but really big with yale blue thread.

carla's fall star quilt.
quilted this one with indian summer pantograph with a variegated rust thread.

carla's christmas horse quilt.
we used the holiday garland pantograph with a light brown thread.

one of my ufo's!'s about 7 years old.  finally got pillows made.

carla's flying geese quilt.
very modern!
used bauhaus pantograph with a variegated light blue thread.

kathleen's log cabin quilt...custom quilted this beauty.
feathers in the large black areas.
stitch in the ditch in the red and small black areas.
cross hatching in the outside border.

close up of kathleen's quilt.
the markings are with a chalk that washes out.

sherry's raiders quilt for her brother.
double bubble pantograph with a dark gray solid thread.
so here's the deal, folks.
we live in hawks territory.
as you can imagine D said, "charge them an extra $50 for bringing that thing into my home."
as they were standing right there they knew it was a joke.

i've got a few projects of my own going at the moment.
here's to pictures to keep you guessing...

can you guess?!?
i hope not!
but they're really good!


~ h