Monday, February 27, 2012

Hymn Challenge - I'm Caught Up Now!

Papers: Bazzill cardstock, October Afternoon.
Flower: Recollections
Ink: Tin Holz Distress Ink in Antique Linen

I challenged myself to redo my last Hymn Challenge - "May the Mind of Christ my Savior." Here's my redo above. It's actually the fourth hymn for the year. I added another layer--the brown background, and I stitched the layers together on my sewing machine. I also bought a Tim Holz distresser so I could roughen up the edges of the paper a bit, and I bought some ecru lace to replace the paper strips at the bottom. I inked the white papers with Antique Linen, added a yellow die cut doily and ecru flower, and lastly popped the rose die cut with foam squares.  I'm enjoying the process of learning new scrapping techniques, and I enjoy reading the words to the hymns and taking in the truths they stand for.

Somehow I managed to skip Hymn #3, "How Great Thou Art", and here is my attempt to put it down in art form. The pearls, the pearl spray and the cross were all purchased at Michaels for 40% off! Red and black are an unusual color scheme for me.

Paper:  Heritage from Hot Off the Press, Cream paper from K and Company Life's a Journey
Die Cut: Scalloped Rectangle from Spellbinders
Cross, Pearls and Pearl/Gold spray: Recollections
Ink: Tim Holz Antique Linen

You can visit Patter Cross' blog at to read her wonderful posts about the writers of these special hymns. 
Blessings to you, and keep stitchin' and scrapbookin'!

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Hymn Challenge

Today I completed two of the Hymn Challenges that Patter Cross has posted. Today's hymn is one I had never heard before...May the Mind of Christ, written by Kate B. Wilkinson.

May the Mind of Christ my Savior
Live in me day to day,
By His love and pow'r controlling
All I do and say.

I love hymns that are pretty much scripture put to music. Colossians 3:16-17 says: "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him."

Here is my 5 inch x 7 nch page:

Paper and rose diecut: October Afternoon (Farmhouse, Guest Room)
Martha Stewart Eyelet Scallop Punch.

As you can see, I am really into the "Shabby Chic" look. I need to get to the store and buy some more white and ecru colored lace!

And here is the Hymn Challenge from February 12:  This hymn is "Standing on the Promises of Christ my King" written by Russell Kelso Carter. What an interesting person he is! A military student, gifted athlete, professor of chemistry, math, engineering, sheep rancher, an ordained minister--and a medical doctor. However did he find time to do all of that?!  But--back to the hymn. What wonderful words!

Verse 2:
Standing on the promises that cannot fail,
When the howling storms of doubt and fear assail,
By the living Word of God I shall prevail,
Standing on the promises of God.

And here is my page (more Shabby Chic):

Papers:  Bazzill Basics (Rome), Pink Paislee (Vintage Vogue)
Die Cutter:  Revolution with Spellbinders scalloped rectangle.
Inks: Colorbox black and Colorbox Cat Eye lavender
Glue:  Memory Book Glue Dots, Therm O Web Foam Squares
Fiskars Scalloped Scissors

Be sure to visit Patter Cross' blog at to follow her hymn challenge. Even if you don't create your own art page, you will be blessed just to read her text.

Till next time, keep stitchin' and scrapbookin'!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Happy Rudy Day

What is Rudy Day you may ask? Well, if you are a Christmas lover like I am, you try to keep the Christmas spirit alive all year. Over at the organized Christmas website, you can join the fun every 25th day of the month, celebrate a little Christmas, and do a little something to make this Christmas not so stressful. Here's the link, go check it out:

I cannot resist showing you a few of my Christmas quilts. My special Rudy Day assignment:  I tweaked my Christmas budget from last year, ordered online from (fabulous china, silver and glassware site) some wonderful Christmas salad plates for someone in my family who will remain anonymous, and worked on a Christmas quilt that will be a gift. I'll show you the quilt eventually, it's not ready to be revealed yet. And, coincidently, today I received a wonderful CD with 11 lessons on making Christmas Cards from Scrapbooking is definitely one of my weaknesses! The cards are very fun and the CD is definitely inspirational!

Generals' Wives Block

I made another block for my General Wives quilt. This block is in memory of Julia Dent Sherman, wife of Ulysses S. Grant, US Civil War general and president of the United States. Having lived in northern Illinois, I am very familiar with the family home the Sherman's had in Galena Illinois. Hubby and I toured it years ago, and I remember the wonderful period antiques. You can see the home here...
at Julia and President Grant had 3 sons and a daughter. Grant was dying with throat cancer when he wrote his memories, ensuring a financial legacy for his wife and children. I would love to get my hands on a copy of that book!

I've also located the Wyndham fabric website if you would like to more information on the quilt and the fabrics.

And last but not least, here is my block, done in soft lavender and greens.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Small Quilt Lover

Yes, it's true...I'm a small quilt lover. I like them for many reasons. You can try out a new color scheme without a major commitment in time and money. You can try out a new pattern to make sure you have the technique right. You can duplicate something you saw elsewhere just for the fun of it...and you can pull out a color from your dishes and build a color scheme. This is my "Lizzie's Little Quilt" with my Liberty Blue dishes.
Here are a few other small quilts I've made.
 Courthouse Steps a Jo Morton pattern
 Penny Lane in one of my favorite color combinations--red, white and blue.
 Patriotic Strippy Quilt, another Jo Morton pattern
And Charming Coins on the front door. I believe this is a Kathleen Tracy pattern. Her stuff is wonderful. Check her out at

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Thimbleberries "Love Me Tender"

Our Thimbleberries group met Thursday and I was the guest "teacher" for the class. It was very fun to see everyone's progress on the first quarter "Love Me Tender" project. We talked about piecing (and pressing) the heart blocks, alternate ways to make flying geese, and measuring the quilt top before adding borders. Almost everyone had completed sewing the four heart blossom blocks together. I really do like Thimbleberries patterns. They are very well written, and very accurate. If you follow the directions exactly, you should have no problem with any of their projects.

As part of the class demo, I had 10 green heart blocks sewn together to make 2 of the borders. Today I was able to complete the last ten heart blocks and get the borders on. Now I only have to add the final border. I'd like to get this to my machine quilter in enough time to have it back for our March meeting.

On a hopeful note, they are predicting 1-4 inches of snow overnight here in the Richmond area. If we do get 3 or 4 inches, they'll probably give us a snow day tomorrow...I can stay home and sew! I can only hope!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Thimbleberries and Valentines

All I want for Valentine's a little chocolate, some time to sew, and lunch at Applebee's! Hubby brought me some beautiful pink roses, and we both decided to take a vacation day. I've been working on my Thimbleberries project. If you're participating in this years "Pattern Party" club, you've probably been making some progress on your project also. First I downloaded a fabric chart from the Thimbleberries web site ( Go to free patterns to locate the fabric chart. I love the pinks, purples and greens in the border fabric, so I cut it double size for the chart.

Here's the book we are using; this year we are making 4 separate seasonal wallhangings, beginning with the spring one called "Love Me Tender." I cut the pieces for Part 1 out on Saturday and just finished sewing it together. It turned out very nice if I do say so myself.

Our meeting is Thursday and I will be the substitute teacher this month. Tomorrow I hope to complete Part 2, which is a delightful heart border with green hearts. Sewing tip:  Our local Food Lion carries a non-aerosol spray starch by's biodegradable, ozone friendly, and has a fresh linen scent. I hope you can find it and will try it out.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

10 Tools that Changed my Quilting Life

How do you go about advancing from a beginner quilter to an intermediate quilter? Here are the 10 tools that helped me "move on up the ladder."

1.  If you have 4 feet of wall space, install a design wall. My first design wall was nothing more than a 2 yard piece of white flannel and a handful of pushpins. Pin your fabric on the wall..go at least 6 feet up from the floor, 7 is even better. When you start sewing blocks, get them on the design wall. It's amazing how that change of perspective helps the process.

2.   When I purchased a raised height cutting table, I could now cut all day without a backache. It's way past time to graduate from cutting on the kitchen or dining room table!

3.  A digital camera is great for snapping photos of potential color schemes, your favorite quilts in a quilt show, and photos of guild show and tell that particularly speak to you. You'll become aware of the styles you like best.

4.  One of the best gifts I ever got was Electric Quilt (, a computer software design program to help me design my own quilts, help figure out yardage, play with color, and create handouts for my classes. I LOVE it! It's sooo fun!

5.  Rotary cutters and the latest cool rulers. I'm old enough to confess my first quilt was a rail fence quilt marked with a yardstick and pencil---and cut out with scissors! And I marked and cut out the whole thing while sitting on the family room floor!

6.  Taking classes from national teachers...some of my favorites were Marsha McCloskey, Carol Doak, Nancy Johnson Srebo and Jinny Beyer. Even if you don't particularly like their style, take a class from them when they visit your area, you will always learn something worthwhile from them.

7.  Join a group that meets regularly at your local quilt shop. Shops that offer "block of the month" programs, or groups like Thimbleberries or Jo Morton clubs encourage show and tell each month...which helps motivate you to get the month's "homework" done so you can show it off. Plus, you will learn a lot from your fellow club members each month.

8.  Learn all you can about color by taking a class on color, or work through a book on color intended for quilters. Bookmark these color blogs and visit often: and Design Seeds even has color "books" that you can download to your iPhone or iPad. Check out the books titled "crafted color" for yummy color palletes based on craft items, "creature color" features palletes built from photos of dogs, cats, birds, fish, etc. and floral color, featuring nature-inspired color schemes. Yummy, yummy, yummy!

9.  Keep a quilters journal documenting each quilt you make. Begin writing when you first start each project; include the pattern source, fabric swatches, where you bought the fabric and how much you paid for it. If you made it for a gift, tell the story (wedding, new baby, graduation, etc.) Draw a quilt block and color it in and include a photo or two. This journal will become a priceless record for you to look back over and enjoy.

10.   Teach a class! All it takes to become a teacher is to learn something well...and pass it on to someone else. Teaching really causes you to grow!

I hope you enjoy the whole quilting process as much as I do!

Monday, February 6, 2012

Little Women Group 10

I'm getting ready for our Little Women class this Saturday and have my demos ready. Here's Vintage Holiday. I picked it up from the quilter and it is gorgeous!
Here's Amy and white is so popular right now, I made it using Jo Morton red and cream colored fabrics.

And last but not least, is Point of View...sorry it's not complete, but I want to show the gals how to sew a diagonal set quilt together. I'll post another picture when it's completed.

Super Bowl Stitching

I had some time this weekend to finish 2 small quilts. That's always such a good feeling of accomplishment. This first table runner I stitched back in 2010. Each Birds in the Air block is 3 inches finished. The quilt features mostly Jo Morton fabrics and measures 14 inches by 43 inches. This is going to go on hubby's nightstand. I machine quilted and bound it on Saturday. I laid it on the carpet to take its picture and less than 30 seconds later, Dusty had claimed it. I don't think he realized he was sitting on all those birds ;-)

Then on Sunday, Feb. 5, I worked on this little quilt from It's called "Scrap Lab" and was a free pattern. I also machine quilted this. I completed the binding just seconds after the game ended!  Sorry Patriots...maybe next year :-(