Saturday, December 10, 2016

In Search Of --

It felt like a treadling day yesterday.

I was feeling a bit restless.  You know how it is when your mind goes a hundred different directions and you can’t seem to quiet your thoughts?

Around and around and around they go, from one thing to another until the circle begins again.

I’m making a good ditch effort at this relaxation thing, but for a girl that’s always thrived on hyper-drive, and deadlines and go go go, sometimes relaxation feels like the equivalent of SLACKING and slacking is just something I do not do.

And I start over, telling myself – you need to relax, you need to do less, you need to enjoy life and not just pound through it.

Friday, December 09, 2016

En Provence Mystery, Part 3!

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Welcome to Part 3 of our En Provence mystery!

Can you believe it’s part 3 already?  Time is FLYING and units are being made left and right and right and left.  It’s a global storm of busy quilters stitching away wherever they can squeeze time in between holiday hubbub, family obligations and things that crop up in every day life.

If you haven’t had the chance to check out our Mystery Monday Link-Ups, please DO!  The sharing is fabulous.  You’ll find both that we have done so far linked under the En Provence Mystery tab at the top of the blog.

As for THIS week, Any guesses?

I’m feeling rather PURPLE after looking at this photo, aren’t you?


Oh yes, I think it’s definitely time for PURPLE!

In dealing with all of the stress over specialty rulers and folks feeling buried and worried the rulers won’t come in time, or they’ll be left so far behind due to Tri-Recs madness and “Who knows what else Bonnie is hiding up her sleeve!?!” kinds of panic, I’ve gone back to the drawing board and reassigned the units in a different order to give us a bit of breathing space.

In fact, this week is going to be a near repeat of Part 1, only:


Dark Purple/Light Purple 4 patches.
All from 2’’ strips as in step 1.
168 total.
Units will measure 3 1/2’' and finish at 3’’ in the quilt.


Just as in step 1, the best way to get a variety of 4 patches is to work with short strip sets.  Pair 2’’ strips of dark purple with 2’’ strips of light purple and sew with 1/4’’ seam.  Press toward the dark purple and measure.  Strip sets should measure 3 1/2’’. They will finish at 3’’ in the quilt down the road.  For now, focus on that 3 1/2’’ size.

For ease in cutting, just as with part 1, pair one strip set with another, right sides together.  Sub-cut them into 2'' sections of already matched pairs.  If I have 5 or 6 identical 4 patches and they are spread around the quilt, no one is going to care.  Cut 168 matched PAIRS ready to sew.


A few of mine!  Make 168.

See that little purple calico with the rose buds?  1980-something!  This goes back to my early early years, and it was fun for me to stick it in here.


And you know what to do with the back!  SPIN, Quilters, SPIN!

And this is where I have a confession to make.  Those of you who watched Quilt-Cam on Sunday may have caught what I am about to refer to.  And it concerns the neutrals.


This is where I hang my head and state that I am only human, and that you are my Beta Testers.  No one else has made this quilt but me, and I made it all from scraps – the only yardage was my magenta. 

If you are a scrappy quilter, it’s not going to be a problem, but if you are a “one neutral only” kind of quilter you may need to pull in some more.

We have used our 3 yards of neutrals, and there are a couple more steps to go that require neutrals.  The total yardage for neutrals should be 4 1/2 yards, not 3 as stated.

I have no excuses and I don’t know where the error occurred, I only know I do my best and like all of us I sometimes fall short.

SO.  Those single yardage quilters – if you added in a second neutral to do your two-toned 4 patches, you should be fine.  Because you added another 1 1/2 yards in order to do those.

Those who cut the 3 1/2’’ squares instead of piecing the 4 patches, you may need ONE yard more, because you are not losing 25% of your yardage in the seams, as is what happened with the 4 patches. But if you want to go 1 1/2 yards more to be safe, good on you.  Neutrals are ALWAYS needed.

This typo has been corrected on the Introductory post, and on the corresponding PDF.

The good news is, everything we have done so far is symmetrical.  Even if you have to pull in another neutral or two, it WILL NOT look out of place because I know where these are going.  Just get as close as you can to what you started with and you will be fine.

Thank you for being my Beta Testers!


All colors in Provence play together!

For those who are concerned about our other fabrics, they are FINE.  I’ve double checked. And usually I err on the AMPLE side.  But I can’t beat myself over the head with this any further.

At this point I can tell you that you can put your MAGENTA (Hibiscus) away.  We are done with it, unless perhaps you decide to use it for binding, in which case you’ll NEED more. HA!

We still await the arrival of more Essential Triangle Tools.  I am putting those steps off as far as I can, but know that there are alternate methods for doing the units we will be doing with that tool, and I will give you traditional rotary cutting directions and links to other tutorials and methods so you can choose your own way to do them until they arrive.  

The manufacturing process is out of my hands and these have been on order since October.  

Remember to please – don’t stress.  It’s a quilt.  We are sewing.  It’s not life and death, and if we are waiting, maybe we can work on another project for a while, pull out a Leader & Ender and make it primary for a bit.  Let’s enjoy this season instead of stressing and rushing through it.


Quiltville Quote of the Day!

Have a lovely weekend, everyone!

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Thursday, December 08, 2016

We’ve got Quiltmaker Bundle Winner!


Hello from Quilt Villa for things have dipped into the 30s leaving us with nothing better to do than stitch away with home fires burning!

I know some of you are getting snow, but I’m hoping it holds off here just a bit longer, I’m not quite ready for that yet.

I am laughing to myself over this Gift-Away there are so many anxious peeps that I hate to leave the masses disappointed, but there can only be ONE winner drawn!

There are some really great goodies in this bundle and I hope to see some wonderful quilts being made from the patterns between these pages.

LOADS of inspiration!

Would you believe it if I told you that we had 4313 entries all vying to own this package??

What’s a girl to do but set the Random Number Generator in Motion and see what it comes up with.

Are you ready?

Hand Quilting and a Home Grown Video Demo!

This makes me smile!

Yesterday afternoon I took a little trip to the post office with a load of out-going orders and from the depths of the post office I hear Sherry saying “Did you give it to her yet?!” to Aspen who was working the front counter.  “No, but I will!” says Aspen and I am laughing to myself.  “What did I leave here?”  “Did I miss something last time?”  “Do I owe you money?”

And it feels so good that not only do I know these gals by sight and we are on a first name  very friendly basis, but they also know ME by my definitely “Not from around here” Minnesota accent that still clings on, even though I left Minnesota at the age of 7 and grew up in California.

Wherever you learn to speak your vowels, they just stick with you, don’t they?  “Oh Jah, Youbetcha!”

It seems this little letter was sent to me with no street address, and not to my own zip code of 27107.

You see, even though I reside in Wallburg, my address is really a Winston-Salem address and the post office that delivers is from miles away as my little one window post office doesn’t do home delivery, they are postal box only. 

I counted yet one more reason why I love small town living.  The PO gals KNEW I’d be back in eventually.  They even knew I was up at the cabin for a long weekend.  And they just held this little card for me until the next time they heard me walk in the door with a “Hi girls! How’s your day?”

Small town, Big Heart!

And a bigger thanks for the lovely note that was found inside the envelope.  I read every word as I sat in my car with the engine running, seat warmers on.  This made my day!

I love the beautiful handwriting.  Such a lost art. Makes me sad they are not teaching cursive writing in school anymore.  It really IS an art.

Today I have a special HOME GROWN treat for you.

Some of you may remember that Jeff and I tried to do a home video tutorial for the Essential Triangle Tool but were not happy with the quality, and opted to film demos in Houston instead. 

I went back and watched this video, and while there are places I wish I could clip out, there is loads of valuable info I want to share with you. So you are getting it, un-edited, un-enhanced, as is.

While some folks can do everything, there are things I haven’t had a chance to learn yet, so you are getting this good try but very shaky experience!  But I think it has valuable information.

So!  See how cool this is?

Nothing fancy down here in the basement.  Not a studio set up.  No great lighting, no fancy camera, just my son who I love dearly for his willingness to try doing a video tutorial and a few close ups of the outside of my arm near the elbow.  LOL!  STRICTLY AMATEUR!  I do better at sewing.

This video will be linked under the videos tab at the top of the blog for future reference should you need to come back to it.

If you want the pro-view, you can still get my Wanderlust Course  with Craft U!  Use the code Wander15 for 15% off of the purchase price.  More info by clicking the Wanderlust Course link in the upper left hand side bar of the blog (from a real computer where side bars are visible, not a mobile device.)

In OTHER news:

I heard back from Quiltmaker and the String Pumpkins will be on its way to Golden Colorado as soon as I get the binding, sleeve and label on!  That is on the docket for this weekend.  Be looking for that pattern in the September/October 2017 issue.  HOORAY!  That’s the fastest way to get this pattern to you and I’m so excited that they have accepted it.

Our drawing for the Quiltmaker bundle is TONIGHT!!  Did you enter ON THAT POST?

Our Mystery Monday Link-Up has new additions coming in at a good clip!  View those HERE.  Those entries close tonight at midnight, Eastern time, so keep them coming!  If you miss it, no worries, just join in next Monday.



This 2007 UFO needs to be finished.


Just loving the hand quilting texture!

I have my Craftoptics Telescopes to thank for much of this.  I wrote about them HERE.  Seriously.  I am able to do things with the help of these that I haven’t been able to do in years.  No affiliation, just a very happy satisfied customer.  Craftoptics also has a sale going on through December.  Check them out.  It could be the best gift you give to yourself.

I’m headed back up to the cabin this afternoon.  I want to spend as much time up there as I can during my time off which is quickly flying by, you know how it goes.

And you know what TOMORROW is?  Part 3 of En Provence

Are you ready?


Quiltville Quote of the Day!

My mama used to quote "To know and not to do is not to know." And "When you know better, do better!"

Isn't this quilt fun? I'm not sure if it's fish or birds in a circle, but it's got me captivated!

Shared by Kevin H –and I’m so grateful he keeps sending more photos to keep me in quote backgrounds!

Have a great Thursday, everyone!

Click Here to like our Quiltville Friends Page on Facebook for more fun!

Click Here to join our sister group, Quiltville's Open Studio on Facebook, a place to Sew, Share & Grow!!

Wednesday, December 07, 2016

When You Just Gotta Quilt!

I was a good girl yesterday.

I got home BEFORE my estimated time of arrival.

This is what happens when the GPS says it will take 80 minutes from Quilt Villa to Home, and you do all in your power to beat the time given.  HA!

No more than 5mph over the speed limit though, and just keeping up with traffic.  I know I have a lead foot!

I tackled the stack of mail.

I opened boxes of things that had been ordered.

I got laundry going.

I printed all of the invoices that had been waiting in the system since I left for the cabin last Wednesday afternoon, they are all now marked PROCESSING meaning invoices are printed, labels made ready, and placed in line so when  the Essential Triangle Tools arrive I’ll have everything in order and can crank these out the door and get them to YOU.

And before I knew it, darkness had fallen and it was evening time.

Tuesday, December 06, 2016

Stringing Together!

While I was deep into the neutral zone on my side of the table, Mona was digging into a new project with a rainbow of strings from my ever flowing blue bin.

EVERYTHING goes into that blue bin, it lives at the end of the cutting table, and as I am trimming up fabrics I will toss anything that is at least 3/4’’ up to about 2’’ that I don’t want to cut into Scrap User’s System measurements into the bin as I go.

The bin holds a wonderful array of EVERYTHING.

While at home I tend to separate strings by color family for ease of use, I’ve done the opposite here – mixed it all together and I have more ideas in my head for wonderful string quilt possibilities than I have time to sew them.

Monday, December 05, 2016

Quiltmaker Jan/Feb 2017 Gift-Away!

I can’t believe I just wrote 2017 in a subject line!

Oh, goodness.  It is coming up so soon!

And with magazines, it’s a month ahead of where we currently are and do I have some happy surprises for you!

It may only be December, but 2017 is already hitting news stands near you.

Does it drive you nuts?  It does me a bit, but this one is packed with all things WONDERFULLY QUILTY!

My own copy of the January/February 2017 issue of Quiltmaker was waiting for me when I returned from Thanksgiving in Key Largo, Florida.

I tucked myself into bed and thumbed through the pages, one by one by one – SO much great stuff inside!

En Provence Mystery Monday Link-Up, Part 2!


There is so much magenta loveliness in all of its variety happening out there in Quiltville!!

Just doing a quick flip of our #quiltvillemystery and #enprovencequilt hash tags in instagram provided me with SO much happy browsing!

Magenta is a color that I love – and oh my quilters!  You wear it well!

At this point I can tell you that there is no worry on not having enough magenta.  We are done with it.  You’ve done all with the magenta that you were meant to do for this quilt, and there are other colors that demand some attention so we will be focusing on those over the next several weeks.

The only other thing you might decide, and I never decide this until the quilt is DONE – is if you want to use magenta as your binding.  And in that case, you might want to grab more while you can because binding is something I don’t figure into yardage requirements because everyone has a personal choice to make there.

We had an IMPROMPTU Quilt-Cam via Facebook Live yesterday, and it was so much fun!  A lot of mystery info was also shared during Quilt-Cam, so check it out if you haven’t yet.  It’s linked under the Quilt-Cam tab at the top of the blog.

How is your progress on the En Provence Mystery coming along?

Sunday, December 04, 2016

**NOTICE!!** Impromptu Quilt-Cam Opportunity!

Mona isn’t feeling well.  She is staying tucked in at home where she should be, and that leaves Sadie and me up at the cabin ALONE!

I’m stitching a plethora of neutral string blocks, and it occurred to me this could be a good time to throw in an impromptu Quilt-Cam via Facebook Live on my Quiltville Facebook Page and I want to invite those who see this message in time to join me in facebook at 3pm Eastern, which is just a bit more than an hour from now.

If you have liked my main Quiltville Page and have clicked FOLLOW and have notifications enabled, and popups enabled, you should be getting a notification from within facebook when I go live – you click the notification and voila – you are there.

If you are ON my page before I go live, know that you will HAVE to refresh the page so you have the latest view and the post in front of you.  If you don’t refresh, it will not show.