Thursday, December 5, 2013

Cross Eyed

No blogging - no facebooking???
There is a reason why I have been MIA.
I have had my nose one inch from my computer screen for the last 2 weeks generating my 2014 Fall and Christmas patterns.
Generating quilts on the computer is much like making a real quilt. Each strike-off - these are kind of like proofs - is scanned. I then use these scans as my "fabric". I  have to cut every piece. Sometimes I have to "piece" the scans to get a large enough piece. If there are appliqués the templates have to be made and I have to cut out the appliqué. When all that is done I will  "stitch" it all together. The one thing you do not have to do on generated quilts is press.
Below is a snippet of the generated quilts from each of the groups.
This is just a tease...these patterns will not ship until May and June of 2014.

Patterns for my Fall line Hello Fall.

Patterns for my Christmas line Pine Fresh.

When we receive the actual fabric we will then make the real quilts.

Hopefully by then my eyes will be uncrossed and back to normal.

Happy belated Thanksgiving.

And now I am off to do some Christmas decorating.

From my heart,

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

I Lived to Tell About It

This past Saturday I was the guest speaker at The Quilted Steeple quilt/craft retreat center. 

Yes you heard me right, guest speaker. Not quite sure what I was under the influence of when I said yes. For those of you who know me I am sure you are scratching you head and asking why.

I have been told when you speak in front of people it will be easier if you imagine the audience in their underwear. 

As I looked over the crowd I saw that
most of them were my age... or older.
I have seen myself in underwear...
 it is quite frightening - okay forget that plan. 
Plan B. Oh dear I don’t have a Plan B. 
With no plan B, I had no option 
other than to muddle through the little chat. 
So muddle I did. 
And I lived to tell about it.

The Quilted Steeple is a country church and parsonage built in 1897. 

This is the church Julie Dodds and her family attended all of Julie's life.
It is just up the road from their farmstead.
In 2006 the church and it's contents came up for sale.
Julie attended the auction with the intention of buying the organ for her mother.
Her mother, Helena played the organ at the church for 60 years.
Julie bought the organ - and the church.
At the time she had no plans for the church but could not bear to think what might happen to the church if she did not buy it.
Julie decided to turn the church into a quilting/crafting/just get away retreat center.

She and her family members went to work refurbishing the little church and parsonage. The parsonage has 5 bedrooms each with 2 beds.

This is the Sandy Gervais room featuring quilts made from my Flirt line of fabric.

I call this the book room. 
Love the table made out of old encyclopedias.
There are shelves made of books, 
which you cannot see in this picture.
The whole house is furnished eclectic style
 with a treasure trove of found objects.

The church has two sleeping areas.

One is in the choir loft.
As a child I was very intrigued by the choir loft.
How fun would it be to sleep in the choir loft?

A fellow Iowa designer, Leanne and her daughter Kaytlyn 
from The Whole Country Caboodle vended at the open house. 
You can find Leanne here, here 
and here are some more picture from the day.

Their vending was set up in the little Sunday school room.

This was the sky the day of the open house - a perfect day for an outdoor quilt show.
The outside edges of the property are lined with trees.
To me they just said ...string some rope and hang some quilts. 
Bruce and I hung 500 feet of rope.

 Lori, Lois and I  hung 68 of my quilts on the rope.
 We started at 6:30 in the morning.

We also draped them over the balcony,

over the pews and hung them on the church walls.

In all 106 of my quilts were displayed.
All designed by me, made of fabric designed by me.

I always pass out candy when I make an appearance.
I was looking around to see what I could use for candy bowls when a thought popped in my head.
I wondered if the offertory plates were still at the church.
A quick email to Julie confirmed they were still at the church.
Perfect I will use them for candy dishes.
The offertory plates made me think of the Doxology, which I was soon singing in my head.
Then another thought popped in my head.
Could we rewrite the words to fit a "quilting" crowd.
Another email to Julie asking if she could rewrite the Doxology.
She put her mother Helena on it.
In less than a 1/2 hour Helena had rewritten the words.
At the "New Church of Quilting", offertory is done in a different way.
When we pass the plates, instead of putting something in, you get to take candy out.

While Lori and Lois passed the plates 
Helena played the organ and sang the Quilter's Doxology.
Tune Doxology--------------
Praise God for whom all quilters sew

To share their love with all they know
Their hands and heart are busy too,
to share a "stitch in time" with you.

By Helena-------
It is estimated that Helena has played 
the Doxology about a 3,500 times.
Here are few random pictures from the day.

Julie holding up the lamppost. 
Well not really but that is what it looks like.
 I think she is actually greeting everyone 
and making sure they sign up for all of the great door prizes.

 Checking out the on point mitered binding.

Me reconnecting with a lady, who hand quilted 
one of my very special quilts, 
which was a gift from my husband. 
I blog about the quilt here.

Look how happy the both of use are.

Checking out those big buttons.

A young shopper admiring a Snap Pop fat quarter bundle.
I don't know who you are, but I would love to 
see a picture of whatever it is you make using the bundle.
Please email me a picture of your finished project at

Two friends reading the sayings on the Dear Friends quilt.

Julie...still holding up that lamppost.
 I  am quite sure it is firmly cemented into the ground...but I could be wrong.

The happy winner of the sewing machine.

The wild turkeys decided to pose 
in front of my Gobble Gobble quilt.
Who says turkeys don't have much of a brain?

It was a wonderful day for everyone to see Algona's latest attraction.
Thanks to everyone who attended the open house.
If you are interested in a get away in the quiet country side, where you can sit on the porch and do some hand sewing while listening to the birds sing and the turkeys gobble, then the Quilted Steeple is the place for you.
Go here for info. Go here to like them on Facebook.

Hope to see you in Iowa sometime soon.
Happy Quilting.
From my heart,

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Meet and Greet at the Quilted Steeple

Algona's newest quilt/craft retreat will be opening soon.
I will be making an appearance at their open house this Saturday - 21st at 1:00.
I know you are shocked - Sandy Gervais making an appearance -  it's a rare thing.
Not sure what I was under the influence of when I said yes.
The grounds are surrounded by rows of trees. We have strung 500 feet of rope between the trees.
Weather permitting we will hang my quilts on all 500 feet of the rope.
It is raining here right now. :-(
I also will have a few quilts hanging in the church.
I will be set up to vend on the alter.  I will have fabric, the Moda precuts and kits for purchase. We will have the capabilities to take credit cards, however cash would be much quicker - never sure how our internet reception will be out in the country.
Also vending:
Two scrapbooking companies -Close To My Heart and Stampin' Up.
Whole Country Caboodle (an Iowa fabric/pattern designer),
Evelyn Rhunke who makes really cool greeting cards and pictures using flowers from her garden.
You will also be able to taste wines from our local wineries, Plum Creek Winery and Train Wreck  from  2pm-4pm.

Other fun places to visit in Algona:
The Chocolate Season. Yummy! Lots of Chocolate and specialty drinks -my favorite is their Italian Fizzy. They serve lunch too.
The Perky Parrot. Coffee shop/lunch spot by day martini bar by night.
The Pet Kingdom. Everything your pet could possibly want.
Two antique shops. Home Store Antique, Front Porch Antiques
Phoenix. A gift shop with a lot of re-purposed items.
The Market. Another great gift shop.
Thistle Do Yet another great gift shop.
The Grotto of Redemption. Located in West Bend, IA. - just 20 minutes from here.
And something for the men too.
Three golf courses. Algona Country Club, River Road and Spring Valley

If you are going to be in the area we would love to have you stop by and check out Algona's newest attraction. We will be giving a away MANY door prizes.
Below is a bit taken from their website. It describes the retreat better than I can. You can also Like them on Facebook. (click on pictures to enlarge)

When they say a lovely Iowa setting they are not kidding.

If they are not freaked by the crowd, you will be able to see these wild turkeys who have made the Quilted Steeple their new hang out.

Hope to see you Saturday!
From my heart,

Monday, September 16, 2013

Winners of Size Matters Blog Hop

Thanks to all who followed along and left a comment.
I hope this hop inspired all of you to try the same block in different sizes.

And the winners are:
(Please email me your mailing addresses.)

Laurie is the winner of a  SoHo a fat quarter bundle.

 Laurie in Iowa said...
Thanks for the quilt pattern... I need to make this one up ASAP.
September 6, 2013 at 10:56 AM
Jean is the winner of a SoHo a honeycomb.
 Jean Fisher said...
Your new line is so vibrant!! Love, love, LOVE it! (Thanks for the opportunity to win.) Also it is great reading your blogs again! You have been missed!
September 13, 2013 at 1:25 PM
Susie is the winner of a SoHo candy pack.
 Susie said...
I'm in awe of your Spring coat. New line is really special.
September 7, 2013 at 10:58 AM

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Size Matters Day 5 and Buddy Poppies

Today is Day 5 of Moda's Size Matters blog hop.
Blogging today are  Lauren & Jessie JungKate SpainMe and My Sister
Hop on over to their blogs to see why size matters to them.

It is also Buddy Poppy Day here in Algona, sponsored by our VFW Post 2541.

I dropped a donation in the box and was given a poppy. I  proudly attached it to my purse in tribute to all who served.
I loved poppy day as a child. I thought the poppies were so cute and red has always been my favorite color. They were made of crepe paper back then. As a child I had no idea what a huge role these pretty little flowers played.
Here is a link that tells the history and the importance of the Buddy Poppy - a trademarked name.
Be sure to buy a Poppy when Buddy Poppy day is in your community.

Tomorrow  Kathy SchmitzMinick & SimpsonPrimitive Gatherings will be blogging.

September 12th … Fig TreeA Stitch and DyeThimbleblossoms

September 13th … Blackbird DesignsCotton WayStephanie Ryan Studio

September 14th … Kansas TroublesAneela Hoey

September 4th … Laundry Basket QuiltsFrench General,  Zen Chic

September 5th … Bunny Hill,  Basic GreySweetwater

September 6th … Jan PatekPat SloanPieces From My Heart

September 9th … Deb Strain,  Barbara BrackmanV & Co.

September 10th … Lauren & Jessie JungKate SpainMe and My Sister

Happy hopping,
From my heart,

Friday, September 6, 2013

Blog Break and Catching Up

The Moda Size Matters blog hop is taking the weekend off. We will continue the hop on Monday with
 Deb Strain,   Barbara Brackman,  V & Co. blogging.
 I thought I would use this down time to catch you up on the last 6 months.
As I said life's happenings and deadlines seem to get in the way of my blogging.
So here is a quick wrap up of the last six months.

March - quite frankly I don't remember much about March. All I can remember is the weather was colder and we had more snow than in December.

 I generated the quilts to go with my Valentine's line Table for Two

I also  made myself a spring coat during the month of March.

April - I think we received more snow in April than we did in March or December. If it was not snowing it was raining. We busied ourselves preparing for market in Portland. Soho was my market fabric line. We made several traditional type quilts using this fabric - see yesterday's post or go to here to see the newest patterns posted on my site.

May - on May 1st we broke long standing records when we received 11" of snow.

 Children had to deliver May baskets in winter coats - crazy! Many farmers were still struggling to get the crops planted. Most of the planting is usually done by the middle of May.
 May is always a crazy month as we have market AND my Christmas AND Fall lines of fabric are both due June 1st. These fabric lines were sent May 31st UPS next day air to Moda - just under the wire.

My Christmas line is named

Pine Fresh
Colors are  very similar to Merry Medley.
My Fall line is named

Hello Fall

A whimsical line featuring traditional fall colors.

When Joy found out we were going to market she begged and whined and cried until I said she could go along.
Since Joy would be attending market, Bruce thought he could stay home. I reminded him that Joy would not be much help...

as she does not have much of a head on her shoulders.
Nor she is very willing to lend a helping hand…
In the end Bruce and Joy both attended market.

We flew to Portland - well Bruce and I did - we stuffed Joy in a box and sent her on her way.
Since we flew we pretty much had to do a booth in a bag.

We rented some furniture from Vintage Furniture Rentals in Portland. 

The Koreans stopped by to say hi.
(My fabric is printed in Korea.)

Joy whined about having NOTHING to wear to market
 until I caved and  made her a new outfit for each day of market.

Day 1. outfit.

This was supposed to be day 2 outfit but I left this outfit at the hotel. She had to wear the SAME outfit on day 2 that she wore on day 1 and this outfit she wore on day 3. (Are you as confused as I am?)
 Boy was she mad - She pouted the whole day.

This was supposed to be day 3 outfit - her casual Sunday outfit.

We stayed at The Double Tree Hotel. In my mind a 5 star hotel.
They give you hot cookies when you check in, 
or anytime you go up to the front desk and ask for one…

I made quite a few trips to the front desk.

June - We had a very cold and rainy June. June 1st is the cut off date for planting  corn or soybeans with any chance of harvesting a decent crop. June 1st came and went with many fields unplanted. Never in my 50+ years have I seen field after field of unplanted ground here in the middle of farm country.

July arrives and finally we receive some warm summer weather. 
July 4th was spent at the cabin with friends and family.

Andy caught the biggest fish.

And the biggest stick.

Anthony caught the smallest fish.
The fisherman's trick of holding it as close to the
 camera as possible does not enhance the size of this fish.

The month of August was spent designing my Spring Market 2014 market line.

 Rambling Rose.

Kind of a softer more muted toned down version of SoHo 
with the addition of the color Grey.

Labor day was spent with my two sister's and their husbands at the cabin. The weather was perfect. I did not get one picture of the weekend. We mostly sat on the deck and ate big meals made from fresh garden produce.

I am now computer generating the quilts that will feature my new Spring line of fabric.

The name of the line is Chance of Flowers.
This line will début at Fall Market in Houston.

That pretty much is the last 6 months in a nutshell.
I will try my hardest to be a better blogger.
I can feel you all rolling your eyes - as you have all heard this before.
But I promise I really will try my best.
Check back on Monday when  Deb Strain   Barbara Brackman   V & Co. will be blogging.

Remember to leave a comment on YESTERDAY'S post (not this one) to be eligible to win some great Moda prizes.

Have a great weekend.
From my heart,