Thursday, November 13, 2014

Trip Around the World Quilt for the Newlyweds

I just completed this Trip Around the World quilt top
for our daughter and son-in-law.

The quilt is 105 inches square, large queen sized.
Next I need to quilt this with my standard home sewing machine.....
Do you know a long arm quilter in South Central PA?

I made this quilt the "old fashioned" way, pencil and graph paper.
The layout and assigning the fabrics a number. 
I cut 5 inch squares and arranged them on my cutting table,
again numbered to keep me organized.
I began with the center row and continued with identical
rows to each side. 

This process took quite some time, but I couldn't find a tutorial
for the strip piecing method that used 7 fabrics.
I decided it would be more productive to just sew instead of trying
to figure out the strip piece method for myself.
I was also dealing with extreme knee pain so moving 
around and even sewing for a long period of time was terrible.
Thankfully that is under control now!
The backing will be the tan print on the right
and the binding will be the dark brown fabric. 
For now, I'm giving my sewing machine and knee a break,
a.k.a. working up the courage to start the quilting.
So, I'm working on an autumn leaf barn quilt.
Thanks for visiting and please contact me if you
know a long arm quilter in South Central PA.


Thursday, October 23, 2014


That's the question..........

Found this lovely wardrobe today, tomorrow it will be in our living room.
We will add shelves and use it as a storage unit.

It comes apart for easy moving and needs a little TLC but nothing major.
I'm so excited about this find.

Stay tuned for updates and photos in our home.


Wednesday, October 8, 2014


I was elated to complete this quilt top.
An explanation of the blocks may be found here.
It's a scrappy traditional type quilt, but I love it.
Can you spot the "odd" block?
That was a design choice, 
I actually deconstructed a block just to get that look.  
Since all the blocks were completed when I found this alternate design option
 and it took some time to reconstruct, I only redesigned one block.
When completed, this quilt will find a home in our spare room.

After nearly 6 months in our new home we have a living room curtain.
I took a 5 yard piece of sheer fabric and clipped it to the rod.
It takes some clipping and re-clipping but is an inexpensive
solution to a huge window.  I didn't do any hemming to this piece yet.
As you can see by the peeling wall paper in the upper left corner,
this room hasn't been refinished yet.  So the curtain will come down soon
and then I'll make more permanent design decisions.
For now at least it looks like someone lives in this house.

Next on my list, preparing for visitors this weekend.

Stop by when you can!


Recently, I tried a new activity with Ellie.
Remember the paint with water books?
I found this book at a closeout store, didn't know they were still made.
She enjoyed the project but not for long.
Busy, busy toddler!

The one thing she will sit still for is snuggles and Curious George (Netflix)
with Pappy.  This was a chilly day so Oreo decided to join in the warmth.

And finally a peek-a-boo trick with 2 laundry baskets.

Have a great day!

Saturday, September 27, 2014


My first attempt at painting a barn quilt.
I chose to make a double sided 14 inch square
quilt block that hangs below the mailbox.
Each side is different.

The 3/4 inch plywood was found at a local fix-it thrift store.
What a fun place, it's a home improvement store that everything, either new or used,
has been donated.  The proceeds support a local non-profit agency.
So a win-win!  This piece of wood costs me 50 cents.

GPS doesn't recognize our address until you are past the driveway,
so now we can tell people to turn at the quilt block :)

Next, I have plans for a barn quilt featuring autumn leaves,
hope I get it finished before winter.


Wednesday, September 24, 2014


This new project serves many purposes.
The borders are stash busters.
The center 16 squares are from a friend's stash.
She gave me 2 kits purchased in 2000 and 2001, 
so I'm helping reduce her stash.
I've used half the 2.5 inch squares to make 30 center squares.
 I'm happy these are pre-cut!
And I need inexpensive quilts for my new spare room.
The only cost, my time and since I'm unemployed that works for me.

5 completed, 25 to go!

This project was inspired by a recent article.

Back to the sewing room!

What projects are you working on?


Saturday, September 20, 2014

DECORATING WITH CHINA (includes tutorial)

The next decorating challenge in our new home was the dining room.
Large blank walls can be difficult on a limited budget, 
so I decided to use china plates.  Most came from thrift stores,
the entire group costs less than $5 and had already
been used for our daughter's bridal shower, so I doubled up on 
that bargain.....score!

I started by auditioning and arranging plates on our dining room table.

After finding an arrangement I liked, I covered the plates with Press'n Seal....

traced the arrangement....

and put the Press'n Seal on the wall.

I applied these peel and stick hangers to the plates.  Found them at a local big-box store.

Put nails in the wall, removed the Press'n Seal and wha-la.
I knew there would need to be more to this arrangement but couldn't get it 
right on the table.  I'm such a visual decorator that it was just easier after
the grouping was on the wall. 

Add 2 more plates and I really like it.
There's still plenty of space on the wall for expansion.
If you look closely you'll see that I also moved some of the plates.
Told you I'm a visual decorator.

(working clockwise around the room)

The china plate wall with doorway into the kitchen....

the window facing the back yard a.k.a. neighbor's house...
(Eventually we will replace the ceiling fan with a nice light, 
I just haven't found the right one in my price range
so we will live with this for now.)

the wall featuring a lavender and twig wreath....

close-up of wreath and baskets...

and the doorway to the unfinished living room.

It's not a huge room, but we can seat up to 10 around the table.
So it's great for family or small dinner parties.

Not sure which room will be next on the decorating list.
I'm waiting for inspiration :)

Thanks for visiting!