Friday, September 30, 2011

Surprise! Look What Arrived In The Mail

A package was waiting for me when I returned from my quilting getaway. (More about that tomorrow.)

I opened it and was thrilled to see Sew the Peffect Gift.  It has just hit the quilt shops.

There was not just one copy, but 2 copies.  Martingale wants me to give one away on my blog! Yippeeee.

It is packed with 25 projedcts that make terrific gifts. I was thrilled when they invited me to submit a project for this book.

My project, "Heartfelt Journal",  is a journal cover made from felted wool.  It is sized to fit one of those marble composition notebooks.  Everytime your recipients writes in it, they will think of you!
Here are some of my  favorite projects:

So if you would like a copy of this brand new book, make sure you are a Follower, leave a comment and a way for me to contact you.  I will pick the winner on Monday. 

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

A Sweet New Year

It's the start of the Jewish New Year.  The High Holidays are the most important days in the Jewish calendar.  It starts with Rosh Hashanah and ends with a day of fasting ten days later on Yom Kippur.  It is a time of reflection, atonement, forgiveness and hope for a year in which we do better next year than we did last year.

My wish to everyone, whether you are Jewish or not,  is to have a year full of sweetness and  may we all be better people in the coming year than we were last year. I know I am going to try.

L'Shana Tova.  Happy New Year. 


Saturday, September 24, 2011

Bookbinding Bonanza

It's always a good thing to freshen your creative juices.  Today was that type of day for me.  I took a bookbinding class in Philadelphia at the Bella Forte Studio.  Since I love to make fabric books, I thought that I could learn something new and apply it to what I do.
 Bridget Morris is a wonderful and generous teacher and a gifted bookmaker.  She opened her studio, taught us how to make 2 different types of books and shared her supplies and equipment.  Her studio is located in an old building that has been retrofitted as artists' studios.  There are about 12 other artists in the building.  The owners live on the top floor. 

Bridget's studio was full of lots of interesting stuff.  This cabinet with all those drawers was our first peak into the materials we should be using.

 With drawers labeled with these words, one could only imagine.  I was filled with anticipation.

But when we opened the drawers, OMG!! Talk about eye candy.  We were told to pick paper for 2 books.  It was sooooo hard to choose just 2.

But I finally did.  (I restrained myself from changing my mind several times. ) This was for my Japanese bound book.  It is gold silk screened on a vegetable paper.

This is the other one.   I chose it for the accordion book.

 These were the bin of ribbons to choose from.

First we made an adorable accordion book:

 Next was the Japanese bound book.  I couldn't wait to use that metallic copper scroll paper. And I chose a contrasting fabric for the binding.

Letter type for embossing our intitals on the Japanese bound book.

Bridget operating the foil initial embosser.

My book  cover with my initials in copper foil.  (Can you hear me squealing like a 5 year old?)

After folding the paper for the inside of the book, off to the drill press.

Here are everyone's books:

And here are mine


Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Cathedral Window Therapy

I think I need therapy.  I am hooked on Catherdral Windows.  For those of you who are not familiar with Cathedral Windows, it is a quilting pattern that entails folding and sewing a square of fabric, usually muslin,  several times and then inserting a colored piece of fabric, i.e. the window.  I have never had an interest in making a Cathedral Windows quilt.  I mean never.  It is just a little old fashioned for me, and yet not old enough to be interesting.  I hope I am not offending anyone, but I just had no interest.  Until now. 

Loren, my future DIL, has needlework in her blood.  Her grandmother does lots of wonderful sewing projects.  Last year I was the happy recipient of one of her Make Do pincushions - a wool crow one.  For Christmas she gave Loren some quilt blocks she found in a consignment shop in Ohio.  One set was a group of feedsack blocks.  The other was a stack of  10 Cathedral Window blocks.  Loren decided that this year she would surprise her grandmother and  regift the cathedral window blocks back to her  as a finished project.  She figured I would help her because surely I know how to do all things quilty. Hahahahaha! (Talk about pressure.)

So through the beauty of the Internet, I googled cathedral windows and found some tutorials.  The one that helped me the most was:  This blog also modernized the look.

I wanted to complement the fabric that was already in the windows and at the same time give it an updated look.  Loren shopped a bit and picked out some modern fabrics.  I checked my stash.   The fabrics were just not speaking to me in combination with the floral that was already there.  After many trials and errors,  nothing was working.  That's when you know you have to change course. It was time to abandon the plan or modify it.  The original blue fabric needed to be eliminated.  It was not hard to take out and replace.

Loren said that purple was her Grandma's favorite color.  I happened to have a bundle of Lonni Rossi's assorted pueple fabrics.

I am almost halfway done.  Now it's Loren's turn. 

Thursday, September 15, 2011

!Quilt Fiesta! at PNQE

I had so much fun hanging all of the quilts from !Quilt Fiesta! at the Pennsylvania National Quilt Extravaganza in Oaks, PA.  Yup, that's right - an exhibit of all of my quilts.  I should really say - supervising the hanging of my quilts.  It was so cool to see the behind the scenes workings of a big quilt show.  Can you tell that it was a surreal experience for me?

My friend Kelly and I headed over to the exhibit hall after our wonderful Alzheimer Quilt Challenge.  The Mancuso organization, who run the show, could not have been nicer.  We pointed, they hung - all 20 quilts.  I can't tell you how exciting it is to have so many people being able to see my designs.  And I am doing a book signing on Friday from 1-2PM at Bitty Kinna's booth and on Sat from 1-2 at Steve's Sew N Vac's booth.  If you go to the show, stop by and say hi.


My helper!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Let's Raise Money For Alzheimer's Research

Calico Cutters Quilt Guild has an annual challenge.  The last few years we have tried to structure it so that not only do we challenge our members but also raise money for a worthy organization. This year we chose the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative (AAQI) as our beneficiary.  The quilts could have any theme, but were supposed to be 8 1/2" x 11".  They were displayed at today's meeting.  People had the opportunity to purchase them with the proceeds going to AAQI.  The remaining quilts will be sent to AAQI and sold at the International Quilt Festival in Houston at the beginning of November. The mini quilts were just amazing.  48 of them all together. Take a look at what some of our talented members created: