First stitches!

As promised, an update for Wednesday… well, it’s Wednesday for 20 more minutes.

So, first, let me wish you a safe and healthy Thanksgiving tomorrow! (If you’re in the U.S.) Our county is surging with new Covid cases and we are having dinner at home with just my brother and two daughters. My brother recently discovered the Great British Bake Off so we’re planning a marathon while cooking… truly a “cooking marathon!”

This happened today…I quilted my first quilt on the longarm! Of course, there were a few technical problems I couldn’t find addressed in any manual…

A small batting issue
And an extensive review of the hammock properties of the machine’s frame.

But we finally got past all that and I quilted a small quilt! This was a cheery little top that I bought for $2 at a thrift store in a way before Covid world. You get a glimpse of it in this quick video.

This is a quick video of my first little bit of quilting.

I’m hoping to bind this quilt on Friday so I can get it off to the donor program.

In the meantime, I’m tackling a new dessert tomorrow…. peach cobbler. When I asked my brother if he wanted a crumb top or a more cake-y top he said, “No, it has to have a lattice like Dad made them.” I had to remind him that since I was only 6 when Dad passed, I have no memories of peach cobbler. I grew up with frozen peach pies… which I quite loved, thank you.

So, new adventure in baking tomorrow. Luckily I’m planning to cook the turkey in the grill so I have the oven to myself all day.

In the midst of all this, I’m so grateful for all my friends and family who show up in amazing ways even at a distance. And, if Thanksgiving isn’t your thing… then remember that the truly important thing on Black Friday is that Bonnie Hunter will release the first clue in this year’s mystery quilt!

And, I thought you might get a laugh out of Gizmo and the new “hammock”! I think this will be an ongoing “technical issue. “

Happy quilting!


Saturday Shenanigans

There’s been a lot happening in my sewing life right now but it hadn’t made it to the blog yet. Instead of needle and thread, my newest project has kept me occupied with an allen wrench. There was one of those fortuitous chains of events where a check I wasn’t expecting showed up and then a sale was going on and then I remembered that the Just Wanna Quilt group also had contacts with this vendor and, before you know it…this happened…

It’s a Qu’nique 21 Pro in a 12″ frame! My very first longarm machine! Now, my guy could have put this together in an afternoon but I’m a much slower study. Thankfully, Margot and Stan (along with my girls) were able to help me lift the machine into place and my wonderful neighbor guys and Sarah got quite a workout hauling the boxes to the third floor! I took everything out of that end of the third floor and now there’s a lot of thought going into “what do I need to keep?” Fabric, of course, always makes the cut but I’ve culled probably another 40 books out of my quilting library.

I’m keeping the classics but I just don’t use quilt books the way I used to. If I’m looking for quilting motif ideas, I’m more likely to cruise Leah Day’s site or Angela Walter’s videos. Of course, that still leaves me with a solid two shelves of quilt books and some are “must keeps” like anything from Harriett Hargrave, Bonnie Hunter and Marsha McCloskey. I also have the needlework book that Rose Wilder Lane wrote the forward to in the 70’s. And, just for nostalgia because I hardly sew clothes anymore, the Vogue Sewing Book with it’s wonderful couture and tailoring information has to stay.

In other parts of my life, our school flipped back to working from home temporarily and we have most of next week off for Thanksgiving. It will look a little different at our house this year with just the two girls, my brother and I. Personally, I’ll happily forgo the big celebrations if that means that we can save lives. This picture of my daughter has been on a nurses’ site on instagram and while the mask was taped over the shield to make her co-workers laugh, this is how my daughter has to work these days.

My younger daughter is in a dental assisting program through our community college and they’re having new cases on campus almost daily. I’m hoping you and yours are staying well and healthy and really, really, really hoping that some of these treatments and vaccines will pan out.

I’ve decided that I’m going to commit to updates on each and every Wednesday going forward. (With more in between if something fun comes up!) This is part of a bigger campaign I’m on to pull myself out of a bit of a slump. People like to think that the first year of a loss is the hardest but it’s not like it gets suddenly better. The weight of loss is heavy and it’s been really pulling me down as we had all the anniversaries of the losses followed by Veterans’ Day and the holiday season approaching. So, how do I pull myself up? With a variety of steps:

  1. Listen to Happy Radio on Pandora
  2. Try to dance to at least 2 songs a day
  3. Make sure I don’t miss my afternoon thyroid meds
  4. Take my vitamins
  5. Drink more water
  6. Walk the dog
  7. And play with fabric!

Now, I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t leave you with a furry friend photo to brighten your day. This one is of Milo hogging my side of the bed. That’s been his newest thing. He has himself snuggled into my spot and I have to crawl into bed from the other side. Gizmo, who sleeps on my pillow, does not approve AT ALL but since Milo is about twice Gizmo’s size, he doesn’t say much about it. He just snores disapprovingly.

Happy quilting!


Happy Halloween!

It’s a quiet kind of a Halloween this year. I spent my morning at the car dealership getting a recall repare done.

Then I picked up some paint for a project I’ll tell you more about tomorrow.

My partner in crime at work and I decided to “dress up” on Thursday for work.

The office pumpkin patch!

I made the masks and Margot made our cute hats… aren’t they fun?

The girls and I delivered treat bags to some of our closest young neighbors. The chocolate was a hit with both parents and kiddos… the silly string, well, let’s just say that Sarah got some teasing with that one!

And this is me in all my chili-making glory complete with the volunteer pumpkin that sprouted under the bird feeder.

There’s much fun news to share soon… I’ll try to write tomorrow. In the meantime, enjoy that extra hour tonight… I’m pretty sure the cats won’t let me make the most of it!

Happy quilting!


From the Heart Blog Hop

The wonderful Carol at Just Let me Quilt has pulled together a great group of bloggers to share some gift ideas. I decided it was time to do something fun with selvedges. I’ve wanted to make a dopp kit for awhile, too. Hmmmm, sounds like a quilty mash-up to me!

I used a tutorial from Melly Sews and started with sewing together selvedges. Then I added a layer of fusible interfacing and and one layer of batting and machine quilted it. Then I cut my pieces out and assembled my bag. For the handle, I used a 4″ x 10″ piece with interfacing to make the handle. Honestly, if I hadn’t been binge watching “Unorthodox” on Netflix then it would have easily been an under 2-hour project.

Selvedge Dopp Bag
Top view…I did work to get Spellbound centered on the handle!

Wouldn’t these make a great gift for your sewist friends? You could even fill them with little gifts! And, since they were made from scrappy bits, and leftover batting (or you could Frankenbatt your smaller pieces) they’d be free! We define free in my sewing room as a project that doesn’t require a trip to the quilt shop. (Fabric has a wildly rapid depreciation rate, by the way. Just sayin’.)

Before I go and send you off to visit this fabulous line up, I just want to thank Carol for putting this all together. She is truly a Wonder Woman!

I also need to share that it’s my oldest daughter’s birthday today! I can’t tell you how grateful I am that a dark and stormy night in October landed me with this precious gift!

Birthday cupcakes from Kyra’s!

Obviously with Covid, we’re keeping it quiet and just hanging out with gluten- free treats and the Great British Baking Show!

I hope your week is off to a good start and you find some fun projects to light your creative fire (lol autocorrect just tried to call it a caffeine fire…it knows me too well!)

Hop back soon and happy quilting!


October 26

Creatin’ in the Sticks

Ms P Designs USA

Becky’s Adventures in Quilting and Travel


Selina Quilts

Cynthia’s Creating Ark

Quilting Gail


Ridge Top Quilt

Elizabeth Coughlin Designs

That Fabric Feeling

Vicki’s Crafts and Quilting

October 27


Just Because Quilts

Day Brook Designs

Karen’s Korner

Quilt Schmilt

Kathy’s Kwilts and More

Karrin’s Crazy World

Words & Stitches

Vroomans Quilts

Sew Many Yarns

Songbird Designs

Samelia’s Mum

October 28

Just Let Me Quilt



Seams To Be Sew

Pieceful Thoughts of My Quilting Life

Bumbleberry Stitches

Days Filled With Joy

Quilted Delights

Den Syende Himmel

Life in the Scrapatch

Storied Quilts

Kathleen McMusing

Food for Thought

Halloween Hoppin… Hats Off to You!

One of my favourite old sayings is, “Here’s your hat, what’s your hurry?” And who doesn’t love a good chapeau? When I was working on my Boo quilt, I tried out a watch’s hat as a possible border… but I didn’t like it. When it came to this year’s hop, I thought I’d revisit a little haberdashery work.

My test block had been a hand-drafted, paper-pieced block. For this block I decided to use my tri-recs ruler.

The tri recs ruler lets you cut the pairs to make those great pointy “triangle in a rectangle” units you see in lots of quilts. I started with a 6.5″ strip of both my background and focus fabric. I really, really, really planned to make something small…but… looks like we’re headed for queen size!

The basic recipe I used was 6.5″ strips of both background and focus fabric. Cut the large triangle from the hat fabric and the narrow paper from the background. I added 2″ steps to both sides then 2.5″ on the top. Add a 1.5″ strip of the hat fabric to the bottom and, voila! You have a hat!

For an added bit of fun, I made a strip set from 2.5″ strips. Once I pieced a strip set, I used it to cut the large triangles for my hat. The rest was assembled the same way.

I think this must be my favourite… candy corn makes me smile mop!

These blocks finish 9″ but maybe you’d like a smaller block. Here you can see the difference in starting with 2.5″, 3.5″ and 4.5″ inch strips.

For strips I used 1″ with the 2.5″, 1.25″ with the 3.5″ triangle and 1.5″ with the 4.5″ size.

I’m 17 blocks in on my new project. (The one I didn’t know I was making… lol.) I’ll keep you posted on my progress…I have some Tula prints that will make great hats!

A nice hat spruces up any outfit, don’t you think? I can’t wait to get this one finished and on my bed. Perfect for thos chilly October nights!

https://www.seamstobesew.cPMom/Thank you to Marian at Seams to be Sew for organizing this!

Be sure to visit everyone… there is a ton of talent in this hop!

Happy quilting!


Wednesday, October 21

Words & Stitches
Kathy’s kwilts and more
Count It All Joy
Quilted Diary
Flying Parrot Quilts
Seams To Be Sew

Halloween Hoppin Starts Today!

Are you ready for some spooky fun! Check out this list of fabulous talented bloggers and come back later in the week to see what I’ve been cooking up!

Monday, October 19

Samelia’s Mum
Just Because Quilts
Orange Blossom Quilt Design Studio
Ms P Designs USA
Morning Glory Designs

Tuesday, October 20

Songbird Designs
Elizabeth Coughlin Designs
Slice of Pi Quilts
Just Let Me Quilt
Appliqués Quilts and More

Wednesday, October 21

Words & Stitches
Kathy’s kwilts and more
Count It All Joy
Quilted Diary
Flying Parrot Quilts
Seams To Be Sew

See you soon!

Happy quilting!


Garden Party Show and Tell

Like many of us, I like to play chicken with the heater at this time of year. Oregon has such variable weather that it can be cold and stormy and then pop right back up to mild. However, when Gizmo began taking up residence in my sweatshirt, I caved and turned the heat on.

Not a bad deal… happy kitty and the zip- front allowed me to be hands- free.

After all, I needed my jacket to return to single occupancy so I could work on my show and tell piece!

I started with one idea and then it changed and, truth be told, it’s still a work in progress. I made four of my own row and planned to alternate them with flowers. But then I saw the bird bath row over at Clever Chameleon … so very cute! I upsized it a bit just by increasing it from letter to 11×17. I also used a bit of that that rusty color I ordered by accident as the branch.

Next, I started making flowers from Stitchen’ at Home. I only got one done but you can see where I’m headed.

Speaking of where I’m headed, would you turn these bottom picket border to point up or down? There’s a wide difference of opinion over here!

I had hoped to

As you can see, this is just a start. I really did think I’d be farther along by now but there were so many great ones to choose from! However, we do keep it real over here so rather than backing out, I figured I’d show you my progress and ask for an opinion on if those bottom pickets go up or down!

Thanks to Marian at Seams to be Sew for being such a great leader and all- around lovely person!

Please hop over to the other “tellers” to see what delights they have for you!

Happy quilting,


Blue Heron Quilting
The Devoted Quilter
Kissed Quilts
Daughters of Dorinda
Kathleen McMusing
Ms P Designs USA
Clever Chameleon
Barbara Dieges
Renee’s Quilting Addiction
Words & Stitches
Linda B Creative
Seams To Be Sew

It’s a Garden Party Row Along!

Marian at Seams to be Sew has put in the hours putting together this row along! I’m sure it feels like herding cats but she does it with so much kindness and grace! I hope you’ve been following along… there have been so many lovely rows!

Themes are chosen waaaaay in advance and I had no idea how appropriate this would be to my life. Before Covid, I was working two jobs… one 40 hours a week and one 20. Add travel time and, well, you do what you must but, really, I was exhausted. Since my part- time gig was closed, I took the opportunity to try to bring our little veggie garden back. My husband built me the raised beds years ago. I started with a half- flat of heirloom tomatoes and a couple of cucumbers and a red pepper. And, I gave a zucchini a whole box to itself and it grew! Holy guacamole, I grew zucchini! Now, before you bust a gut laughing, I must tell you that we never had luck with zucchini. So this was pretty cool. It was also lovely that a single butterfly would visit almost every time I worked in the yard.

When it came to my row, I decided that every garden needs a picket fence. I like a pieced row and wanted to have some flowers peeking through.

Northcott generously allows the designers to pick fabrics from their collections and these were mine…

9000-100 white

23094-99 green

9040-38 Dublin Blue (funny story, that’s not the actual number…I mixed up the code and got a lovely orange which I’m working into the show and tell piece. I promptly sourced the Dublin Blue which may be my current go-to love for background!)

DP23285-52 Floral

Another funny, I was so excited to use my new Accuquilt Go Electric that I may have cut all my 2.5″ white pieces before I remembered that I needed 1.5″ pieces, too. Let’s just pretend those parts of the fence just need a touch up!

My row is 12×30 finished. If you need a longer fence, just leave off the end pieces and add a few more pickets! The pattern is here.

There are wonderful prizes but I’m having some trouble with the codes so hop over to Marian’s place to enter. (You can find more details at Seams to be Sew.)

Please be sure to visit all the designers and download your row patterns. There’s so much talent in this group that you wouldn’t want to miss one!

Tuesday, October 06, 2020

Bumbleberry Stitches

 Charlie’s Daughter

Seams To Be Sew

 The Quilting Room with Mel
Words & Stitches

Thank you for stopping by! I hope you’re safe, healthy and that things are blooming in your life.

Happy quilting,


Hello Fall!

Oh my gosh….I lost a day! I was seriously convinced that today was Wednesday!

So, this is the bare bones post and I’ll add more info later. In keeping with my UFO reduction campaign, I chose a top in need of borders. I gave to say it took a while to choose and to locate the background fabric. There were a lot of photos back and forth to my niece with fabric auditions.

But the clear winner was the bears. I’d hoped to get it quilted but the whole evac thing threw me off. I’m excited to move this UFO to top status!

Thanks to Carla for the incentive to get this done! Please check out all the other talented folks on today’s list!

Thursday, September 24th

Creatin’ in the Sticks –

Quilt Schmilt

Bumbleberry Stitches


MumLife in the Scrapatch
Storied Quilts

Songbird Designs

Words & Stitches

for the love of geese

Happy Thursday…. yep, not Wednesday!

Finally Finishes!

I’ve been waiting to share these until after they were gifted. I was commissioned to make a pair of t-shirt quilts for a friend’s twins. These two graduated with my oldest so it was also fun to look back. I can’t believe it’s been 10 years! (My mom used to say, “I don’t know how I got all these old kids!”)

I’ve heard back that they loved them and that makes my heart happy!

So does this picture of my nephew dog, Odie.

Rockin’ that Cone of Shame!

And, I’m very excited to see this picture of the first two UFO post-its hanging on the “Done” display area!

Speaking of pictures… take a look at what we saw during the recent fires. It was really scary and I’m grateful it wasn’t worse. I’m so very devastated for all of those who lost homes and family members. Our air quality was so bad it hovered in the hazardous range for days. We evacuated to my brother’s house where it was also horrible but stayed about 50 points better than home.

I spent this last weekend getting loads of stuff from my brother’s home. And, now that I’m unloading, it’s time to give the closets a good cleaning! I was grateful for the chance to spend some time together. We’re going to try for a weekly movie night since we’re now in one another’s quarantine bubble. You have to love a guy who takes you, your family, six cats and a dog in on a moment’s notice without complaint!

Just one funny from the evac… just as Sarah and I were getting ready to leave, I turned to her and said, “Wait, we have to leave on the right note. ” I had her queue up the theme song from Indiana Jones as we headed off to battle traffic for hours!

I hope your day is full of quilty adventures… be sure to check out the Garden Party Row Along and the Hello Fall hops that are going on right now!

I hope this finds you safe and well.

Happy quilting!