Saturday, July 31, 2010

1 down, 7 to go

I finally got the nerve to work on the July civil war blocks. Anyone out there making these, this is how I made it work.  Cut the pieces for the half square triangles 1/16 bigger than called for (2 1/4 and 3 1/8), then I set my machine to 2.5 to put them together, which is a little bigger seam than the normal scant 1/4 allowance. It seemed to work. Now to make 7 more!
I was going to make the easier version for this month's blocks, but when I saw it made up at the Knoxville quilt show using the easier version, I decided the smaller pieces would look better for the overall design.


Great, cloudy Saturday morning. A rainy Saturday makes a great day to sew. I finished the denim quilt top last night.  The dark spots on the denim are rain.  I wanted to make a picture outside but it has just started raining. Added the punch of red as my friend recommended (thanks Wanda!). It ended up pretty big at 79 X 79.  Can't wait till I get the flannel for the back and get it on the quilting machine. Hummm....what can I get into about the July civil war blocks.....I need to get them done.

Friday, July 30, 2010

4 am wake up call

It is a little unusual to wake up at 4 am to a squealing baby rabbit.  That is what was going on at our house this morning.  Evidently Jesse slipped in the house with him some time earlier -- we can't figure out when.  It wasn't at 11:00 pm when he came in for the night, and I didn't see a rabbit with him when he came in earlier arou 8 pm.  Who knows how long the little fellow had been hiding inside the house!  It was a funny sight -- Jim and I going all through the house with the lights on and flashlights looking in every corner ( at 4 am!)before we found him.  He was unhurt so off I go through the yard in my PJs to let him run off. My friend calls me Ellie, as in Ellie Mae of the Clampetts TV show.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Trash to Treasure

Who would have thought that 8 pair of old, wornout, jeans could be a great quilt?? I think I'd like to put a navy border all around it so I'll be looking for either a couple more pair of dark denim jeans to recycle or some navy twill.  I want to use flannel for the backing.  I love it!  I plan to use an overall quilting pattern and can't wait to do that.  I'll post a new picture when it is completed.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Picnic Quilt

The denim (picnic) quilt is taking shape.  It is hard to quit sewing and go to bed when you are having so much fun!


I've taken a break from cutting up shirts and started a denim quilt.  Special thanks to my "sponsors": My son for his 5 pair of old, outgrown, faded jeans; my husband for his worn out fishing jeans; the rather large (size 50) gentleman who donated his Wranglers to Goodwill; and the matronly woman (won't tell the size) who donated her dark jeans to Goodwill. I wanted to get a good variation of shades, so that is why I purchased the two from Goodwill.  To make lighter strips, I turned some of the strips inside out.  It'll work, just you wait and see! See my first 9 patch block in the pile.  Those will soon turn to 9 patches and split rail blocks.  Stay tuned! And don't worry E, I am not putting Goodwill shirts in your shirt quilt; it will be strictly your very own shirts.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

A lesson in bass

Since I had my first home cooked bass a couple of weeks ago, I've been more than anxious to go bass fishing with my avid fisherman husband.  He prefers catch and release, so he isn't fond of the idea of bringing them home.  I've convinced him that if we could just eat our bass once a month I'd be happy.  Well, he fished last night and the poor fish perished (not by his choice), so tonight....I had my first lesson in filleting a bass and cooking it to perfection.  Yum, Yum.
After he showed me how to fillet it using the electric knife, he sprinkled a little Lowery's seasoning on it, dipped it in white cornmeal and fried it in some oil.  His single two-pound fish was enough for each of us to have two decent fillets.  It was wonderful (of course the fried potatoes and onions, white beans, and peas complimented it well!).  Thanks hubby!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

#6 Batik BOM

This is going to be such a pretty quilt, especially for Christmas time. Our home is full of these colors so I am sure I can use it all year.  Too bad, I won't have it finished by Christmas......unless I get the company to send me the rest of the block kits early......

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Denim Quilt

Another great idea and pattern from Bonnie Hunter.  Cut the legs of old jeans into 3 inch strips.  I cut up 5 pair of old, torn, and outgrown jeans.  Still need some darker ones to add to the mix. Great quilt for picnics, ballfields, camping, and traveling.

Shirt fabric for quilts

In case any of you frugal quilters out there wondered how to get strips from men's shirts.  Here is how: remove the buttons (save for a future projects); cut off collar and cuffs; turn inside out and start cutting away all the seams.  Here is a picture of what you'll have - one large back piece, two sleeve pieces; two front side pieces, and two shoulder pieces.  Then cut into all the 2 and 1/2 inch strips you can get. There are lots of patterns for these strips. The one I plan to use needs only lengths of 4 1/2 inches.

It is time consuming but well worth it if you don't feel you can afford $8.99/yard for quilt shop fabric, OR you just want to make something special from your favorite man's shirts. I've got 13 shirts ready to make into strips.  It probably took about 10 minutes per shirt just to cut them up like above. You can get about 1-1 3/4 yard of useable fabric from each shirt.

A "green" idea.  Fill an old pillowcase with your fabric scraps.  When full, sew it up and use it for a pet bed.


One of today's projects, making blackberry jam.  Although one batch may end up being blackberry topping or blackberry syrup.  I'm not sure if it is going to gel.


I had my first bass fishing lesson last night with the hubby.  It was fun!  I didn't catch anything but he caught a big 3 1/2 pounder!  It was exciting.  We stayed out until around 1 this morning.  I will definately go again.  I think he liked me going with him.  When I bought my license yesterday I told the guys standing around there that I had decided if I wanted to spend time with the hubby, I was going to have to learn to bass fish.  One guy said enthusiastically, "That's the spirit!"

Friday, July 16, 2010


I had lunch with an old friend today. She's been through a lot, but she is a survivor!!  I am so happy for her.  Janie, if you are reading this, just know you are such a beautiful person, inside and out! We will definately plan to get together here at the house this fall, with our significant others!

Thursday, July 15, 2010


This is absolutely so much fun!  I've cut up three of my son's shirts.  He didn't have any really light, like white, shirts in the bunch, but he had several light blue.  I've decided these will be all I need for the light in my blocks.  I also decided to allow the quilt to really be authentic, to let some of the blocks show the labels.  Most are evidently wovens so the front and back sides are the same.  I'll have a block with an "old navy" label on it, one with a "duck head" label.  I've even started not ripping out the front pockets and will let the pocket seam be included in a block.  And another thing......(I really am not very semtimental), some of them have the very faintest smell of his cologne...they just remind me of the man my son has become. I am loving this project.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


Remember, I love all things frugal.  So, I am amazed.  I cut up just one of my son's old shirts and look what I got out of it! Twenty-nine  2 1/2 inch strips from 7 inches long to 27 inches long, plus 13 2 1/2 inch squares! From just one shirt.  One shirt that would probably sell at a yard sale or thrift shop for 50 cents. No, I haven't finished my July civil war blocks....but I allowed myself to "play" with these shirts tonight.  Pulled the buttons off of 8 and cut one up.  Took about an hour, but this quilt is going to be really special.  Here's a pic.  See the pattern I am going to make?

Quilt Show

The AQS quilt show is being held this week at the Knoxville Convention Center.  Awesome!  I went today.  I got tired before I got to see all the quilts, but you can bet, I did make it down all the rows of vendors.  Saw lots of quilting friends (Hi Betty M.!!).  I got some new pantographs and a great new book by Bonnie Hunter.  I am going to use it to make a quilt out of all of my son's old shirts.  I can't wait to get started!  But I must finish the July civil war blocks first........

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Baby Pillow

I made a little pillow out of the baby quilt scraps.  Can't you just see a little girl nestled up in this pillow and quilt? I have two possibilities for who the recipient will be.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Another shot

I always like to hang my quilts on the deck railing to make a picture for my quilting scrap book.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Baby Girl

I finished up this little beauty tonight.  It will go to a new little baby girl in a few months.  I used the pantograph, Sticky Buns, by Anne Bright for the quilting.  It was a little difficult, but I like it.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Another Bow Tie for Eli

If I make enough of these, maybe I'll eventually get the hang of it and start my own business!

Fourth Festivities

Here are a few pictures of all the boats and festivities going on here in our little town.  We live in a small town surrounding a beautiful lake in East Tennessee.The first picture is the view coming off our hill going into town.  So pretty always!

Happy 4th of July !!

Celebrate our freedoms today by worshipping our Lord in the church of your choice!

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Block #6

I finally finished up the June blocks for the Civil War quilt.  This was my least favorite.  I will be glad when this one is finished.  I messed up and trimmed a couple of them too small, but I'll just have to make them work when it comes time to put them all together.  I had to make four of these.


Here is the label I put on the blue and white quilt.  It includes a picture of Jim's mom.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Canning Day is Over

After almost 9 hours I have 28 quarts, and 5 pints of canned green beans.  I don't know how people can a garden full of veggies.  I suppose they can for days on end.  It really takes some time, but it is a rewarding effort.  I love seeing them all lined up in the cabinet.

Canning Day

The "veggie" man came by Jim's work yesterday, so Jim brought home a bushel of green beans.  We broke beans for about three hours last night.  After my walk this morning, I will start canning.  Last year it took so long, so this year I am going to do it a little different - make sure the water in the canner is already boiling, and pour boiling water over the beans as I jar them up.  Maybe it won't take so long for the pressure to  build up. It is a beautiful day today and I am so happy to be home doing my "domestic" things!