Friday, May 14, 2010

More stuff I've made

I love to sew.

Anything but clothes. Don't ask me to make clothes.The photo above is a "Graduation" Bear and below are brother/sister bears. I like to make my bears from super soft minky (micro dot) but I have also made them from sweatshirt material.

I also make purses. I won't bore you with ALL the pics of purses I've made, but here's a link to my Flickr where I've posted pics of most of them.

Have a blessed day.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Some finished quilts...

Since my last post was so wordy, this one will be full of pictures.
disclaimer again:
I'm not a photographer!
My 1st baby quilt. Sandy had mentioned the stack-n-whack method of quilting in one of our classes and I was fascinated. Researched and found lots of pics and tutorials online. I don't think it turned out all that cute, but the colors were pretty. And my friend was happy to receive my "1st". I did learn a lot though...mostly, that I need A LOT more practice on my applique.Baby blankie measures about 18" square. Kylie's graduation quilt was the 1st quilt that I did from start to finish. It's made using a lot of her favorite t-shirts. I quilted each block individually and attached them using this tutorial.
She loves it so much, she took it to college with her AND has talked about giving it to her child someday...the thought that something I made will be passed from generation to generation is the best compliment. After finishing Kylie's t-shirt quilt, I couldn't wait to make one for myself. Something much simpler that I wouldn't be afraid to have a picnic on or just snuggle with on the couch for a movie. I used the same quilt-as-you-go method as Kylie's quilt, but used jeans for the sashing. It seemed like a good idea at the time to also use jeans for the binding...BAD IDEA. It was a disaster. Of course, it's just perfect for snuggling on the couch with, but I couldn't get the corners through my machine. Had to hand tack them down. It doesn't look very nice, but oh well. Live and learn. Plus, it only took about 2 weeks to complete AND I got lots of good practice on my free-motion quilting. This is one of my favorites so far. Using the book Rings That Bind I made this anniversary quilt for my in-laws 50th anniversary in September 2009. Using Bubble Jet Set and my computer printer, I printed the pics directly onto white Kona cotton.
I do make things besides quilts, more later...
Have a blessed day!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Random thoughts...

When I started this blog, I thought, "what if someone actually READS this?" Then I started thinking, "what if nobody reads it?" Ultimately, I decided, it's for me. I've never been very good at keeping a journal so I'm not sure what makes me think I'll keep up with this one. Only time will tell. But some great things have happened to me in the last year and I guess I wanted a written record of it...for me. And whoever happens to stumble onto this blog.
Random, I know.
So in March of '09, I took a beginner quilting class at my local Hobby Lobby. The classes were every tuesday morning at 10am, which happened to be the time that I would normally be doing Miss Marian's hair. It seemed "meant to be". After the 1st class, I cut out all the pieces for my 1st quilt and for whatever reason unknown to me at the time (hind-sight...I was already addicted), I woke up at 5am the next day. After unsuccessfully trying to will myself back to sleep, I gave up and got out of bed. I assembled that quilt top in about 5 hrs.
Oh, I certainly was not alone in my addiction. There were about 4 or 5 very talented ladies in that quilting class with me. I didn't catch ALL their names, but one that stood out to me was Sandy. She was funny, feisty, entertaining, and VERY talented! Check out her Black & White (and red) room. I'm totally coveting that quilt!
As sad as I was to see the end of that month (and class), we all felt, including the teacher, that we weren't beginners anymore. We were ready to "fly" on our own. I was axiously waiting for the next Trails End Quilt Guild (TEQG) meeting. John (our teacher) had told us about the local guild that meets the 4th thursday of each month. Well, I missed the April meeting. May, too. What can I say? I was busy sewing!
I finally made it to the June meeting. The friend that was supposed to go with me was out of town that week. So I went by myself. 30 min late. Oops. They were having officer elections that night. I thought I would just sneak in and sit in the back...blend in as best I could. Getting the time wrong did NOT help with that. A very energetic woman with spikey bleached hair invited me to sit at her table. Her name was Pam. The hair drew me in, but her energy kept me riveted. Two times a year, the guild has a pot luck meeting...this was one of those nights. While we were eating, the ladies at my table get on the subject of how it seems nobody wants to take over as president of this group. The current pres lived over an hour away and was begging for someone else to take over for her. I asked (my mistake) why none of THEM wanted to do it? Pam says, "I'm already serving on the Board." I look around, curious...4 out of 5 of these ladies, it turns out, is already on the Board. As I'm concentrating on my food (and trying to NOT draw too much attention to myself), Pam says, "YOU could be our president!" As I nearly snorted potato salad all over the table, she says, "Seriously, it's the EASIEST job! All you have to do is..." I tuned her out at that point.
I honestly thought I was being "punked". I was waiting for my husband or Ashton Kutcher to jump out from another room, with cameras in my face, laughing. Well, THAT didn't happen. But before I really knew WHAT was happening, Pam was standing behind me, introducing me to the room as a nominee for president. What? Is this woman serious?! I couldn't tell. Apparently, she was.
So, it turns out, being a "member" is just a technicality. Pam (and I suspect the other ladies at the table) paid my dues that night and I became the newest member of the guild...and the new president. I know she was just trying to make an example out of me. And maybe she proved her point. But it could've been a HUGE disaster. I have been VERY lucky (blessed) to have a very hard-working Board, that knew what they were doing. Some of them would argue with me, but at least THEY were members and had been to past meetings. THEY at least knew each other's names!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

My 1st quilt

I've been a hairstylist for about 18 yrs now. I really love what I do. I've met some of the most amazing people. On my journey as a stylist, I've had the privilege to make some wonderful, life-long friends. Oct. of 2000, I met Marian Nichols. It was my 1st day at a new salon, she came in for her weekly appt with the girl who had just quit. She didn't call Marian to let her know she was moving. I introduced myself and offered to do her hair. We quickly became friends and over the years, she has been there for me...through very sad times and very happy times. She's given advice, cried with me and laughed with me.
A couple of yrs ago, we got on the subject of quilts. She knew that I sewed and had found some books that she thought I might like. They were all about needlework and quilting. As I looked through some of them, I discovered that not all quilts are "old-fashioned" and they aren't just for old people. Marian suggested that I start with something small, like a baby quilt. But in Dec of 2008 when she was diagnosed with cancer, I knew my 1st quilt wouldn't be a baby quilt. A good friend shared a beginner-friendly pattern with me and within a couple of days, I had created my 1st quilt top. It was difficult to give that quilt top to a long-armer, not knowing how long it would take to see it finished. But it was definitely worth the wait.

I am NOT a photographer! But a blog just isn't the same without pictures so I promise to work on it.

Miss Marian LOVES her quilt.

I still see her about once a month, although she can no longer travel to the shop. I go see her at home. Since that quilt, I have made quite a few more (including a few baby quilts). I can honestly say, I'm hooked. I love quilting.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Look around you...

Go ahead. Do it. Look around for just a minute. What do you see? I'm sitting on my couch, in my living room. From here, I can see the big picture of my beautiful family sitting over the mantle.

I can see from my front window, the tree in my front yard, with birds coming and going from their own "homes". I can see my dog (Mojo) sitting in the sunroom (aka my sewing room, aka my creative sunny haven)

patiently waiting for me to come in there and work on a sewing project. It's not very sunny today, but the weather man says we have severe thunderstorms headed our way later tonight. I actually LOVE thunderstorms and I LOVE living in Oklahoma where we have a lot of them in the spring time.

So, do you kinda see what I'm getting at here? There is beauty all around us. Wherever you look, if you know what you're looking for, you can see the beauty in everything God has created. And He created it all...just for US.
So do it. Look around. Do you see it, too? I hope so.