200 Quilts · FAL · Quilts

January’s Three Finishes–FAL

I’ve always wanted to say that I’ve had three finishes in one month.  Well, in my mind, I’ve had FIVE, but two of the tops (the wonky Christmas stars and the wonky Christmas log cabin) are at the quilter and won’t be back until next month, so technically the binding and label is all that remain (and I’ve already cut the bindings!).


The first (or third) is my art quilt for our Four-in-Art group, which has its reveal tomorrow.  I have to say I don’t think of myself as an artist, but instead, a creative person.  But like anything in life, when that deadline starts looming, all of a sudden I start getting ideas.  Tons, this time, but I only made one of those ideas.  See you tomorrow for that.

The second is Into the Woods, my autumn quilt (follow the link to see that).  And the third finish this month is Summer Treat.

Summer Treat

I started Summer Treat last summer.  I finished up the top, and it sat–like all good UFOs–but this one was all backed and pinned and ready for quilting.  When I saw that I had a few hours to myself yesterday, and realized I could say those magic words: “three finishes in one month,” I pulled it out and started quilting.


Then binding.

SummerTreat Quilt

And so here it is: Summer Treat.  This is #105 on my list of 200 quilts. (Yes, I know I need to get the list updated.)

Summer Treat detail1

Detail.  I stitched on either side of some of the rows and then diagonally on the side of the white Xs.


The backing and binding are the same fabric: some wild dots.

Summer Treat back

So, yay!  I’m putting this up on the Finish-A-Long Flickr photo-sharing site, hosted this year by Leanne.  I had resisted joining this group, but it’s been very good motivation to get some of these quilts finished up.

Update: Original Post showing all planned finishes is *here.*

FinishALong Button

Something to Think About · Textiles & Fabric

Fat Quarter Shop Dreaming

FatQtrDreamingJune2013My fabulous sisters sent me a Fat Quarter Shop gift certificate for my recent birthday and I’ve had the most fun dreaming about what to buy.  I think I’ve clicked on every category in their online shop at one time or another, but after picking out my purchases (one was that Noteworthy charm pack in the lower right), I went onto their “What’s Coming” section to see what I can look forward to.  Here’s my list:

Ashbury Heights, by Dookikey Designs–I read her on Instagram and am happy to see that I like her upcoming line, with a modern twist, but different colors.  Like all of us, I trend towards medium brights in my purchasing, and I like that she has some lights and darks in her line.

Madhuri, by The Quilter Fish–These are many of my favorite colors.  Love the Far East references.

I need Christmas fabrics like I need a hole in the head, but that hasn’t ever stopped me before. I’m not really in the market for anything holiday, but I’m a total fan of Martha Negley, so just had to look at her Poinsettia and Holly line.

The Boo Crew–what can I say, but that’s it’s very cute.  And the fact that it has text (one of my “traps” in buying–but not just any text–I have to personally like it) and is by Sweetwater, also recommends it.  I know lots of lines have a fabric with words and writing on it, but like anything in life, there’a “bell curve” as to how useable it is.  And if I want to give up shelf space in my stash to house it.

2wenty Thr3e, byt Eric and Julie Comstock–Okay, all text fanatics, here’s a good set. Their traditional picture is below, but I can’t quite tell what the base color is: grey-ish beige (photo below)?, or a true cream (middle stack in above image)?

Screen Shot 2013-01-30 at 11.42.55 AM

Thesaurus, by Thomas Knauer–I saved part of my gift certificate to buy this when it lands this spring.  I loved Thomas Knauer’s first line of fabric, then was so-so about the next two.  This one looks like it will be another winner, if you ask me.  (And yes, the fact that it’s named Thesaurus doesn’t hurt.)

Last one is Return to Atlantis, by Jason Yenter.  I used his wintery line for a Christmas quilt I did a couple of years ago, and liked the quality of fabric.  While I said Madhuri has all my favorite colors, this does too–only it’s as if you added black to the Madhuri line, or lightened up the Atlantis line.

So strolling through all of this made me wonder: do we let the materials of the artist determine the picture?  Do paint artists see a certain blue in the paint store and run home to throw it all over their canvas?  I think not.  So do you think that quilters should let a certain line determine the quilt they are going to make?  I’ve done this–my Harvesting the Wind quilt came about because of a stack of their fabric and a desire to make a quilt after a tile from Portugal I’d seen on Flickr.

Many days the trend pulls quilters one way, as I saw with January’s Scrappy Trip-A-Long quilts. We love groups, quilt-a-longs, tutorials, Moda’s bake shop, and so on.  And I remember the brou-ha-ha over Emily Cier’s quilt out of Kate Spain fabrics (have we forgiven Ms. Spain yet?)–this came about because the quilt was exclusively made from Spain’s fabrics, and yet — -if you noticed the above post — I’m falling into the rut?  trap? groove? of shopping complete lines of one designer’s fabric, rather than considering the artistic impulse, figuring out what I want to do and pulling fabrics from my collection to suit the artistic vision I have. I’ve learned that while a designer’s fabric line may prompt me to plunge into a quilt, if I don’t begin with the block and my layout first, the fabric tends to sit on my shelf because I’m buying THEIR vision, not my own.

But it’s still fun to dream.



I went to Road to California — the quilt show — last weekend.  Photos coming soon.


Four-in-Art, quilt 2

collapsed piece

This little pathetic, collapsed piece of dangly bits is where I found myself at the end of a day of invention as I worked on my second entry in our Four-in-Art art quilts group.  We are still holding, the four of us.  And from the dead place I spoke of last week, I’ve made progress.

Although I know it doesn’t look quite like anything yet, the quilt is coming along.  Nicely, even.  Reveal date is one week from today. I’ll be ready.  Hey! I already have a title.

Quilts · WIP

Still Plugging Along

Well?  The name of this linky party is Wednesday Works in Progress, right?  I’ve made great progress, for I’ve gotten some projects off the pin wall and other blocks out of the box.

WonkyStarShams Pinned

This is the project I removed from the wall–the pillow shams for my wonky star quilt.

Xmas Wonky Quilt1

And here’s what took its place.  The first version.  I had made a lot of wonky blocks in blues, and then a bunch in green/reds.  I had made these in November of 2011–so it’s been a while since I’d seen them, or even remember the idea I had.  I think it was to intersperse the green/reds inbetween the blues, but when I tried that, I hate it.  Of course, I was also watching the Inauguration and kept breaking off my concentration to wait for Mrs. Obama to appear so I could see what she was wearing to the Inaugural Ball.  Jason Wu, apparently.

Xmas Wonky Quilt2

I like it better with just the blues.  Now somehow I’ve got to get it together.  Probably not this week–too many interruptions.  Like going to Road to California quilt show.  Or as I like to refer to it (because the jurors who pick the quilts seem to LOVE spangles and crystals on their quilts), Road to Hollywood.  But still, it is a quilt show and there are vendors and lots of interesting people and old friends and good things to see and I’m totally jazzed about it.  Any one else headed there?

Xmas Wonky Quilt3

So now I’ve got 19 green/red blocks that don’t have a home.  Maybe I’ll put them on the back?  However, I already purchased some lovely blue/white variegated thread to quilt it with.  So two quilts?  I only have enough energy to do one more Christmas quilt, so these will probably go back in the box until November.


Click back over to Lee’s blog, Freshly Pieced to see more Works in Progress.


More Quilt Shops near Corvallis, Oregon

After we visited Greenbaum’s Quilted Forest in Salem, we headed south to Independence, where we’d visit a quilt shop and have lunch at the Pink House.  First up–the shop!


Ladies of Liberty is a quilt shop that features Civil War reproduction fabrics, and they announce their place in the quilt world with the old-fashioned dress in the storefront window.  They are located at 130 C Street, Independence OR 97351. Their phone number is 503-837-0676, and their email is ladiesofliberty@hotmail.com.


By now, the sun had come out, so the shop’s samples really shone. It’s a smaller shop, but has good ideas and friendly staff.   Again, I’ll let my photos do the talking.




Their classroom.  Apparently they just recently pushed out the walls to enlarge their shop and gain this space.






Pink House

Beth and I were ready for lunch, so just two blocks away is the Pink House Cafe (242 D Street, in Independence), open Weds to Sunday 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.  After our delicious lunch, a chance to sit down and catch up with each other again, we were off to Philomath, and JanniLou Creations.


I snapped this one as we hurried inside. JanniLou Creations is at 1243 Main in Philomath, OR 97370, and their phone is 541-929-3795.


This is what greets your eye, but the hellos and how are yous? were also nice to hear, too.  I browsed over in the section to the side, looking at all their black and white fabrics.  Beth had said this was a converted movie theater, but it wasn’t until she urged me to head around the counter and take a look that it dawned on me what she was talking about.  What you see above is where they used to take the tickets and sell popcorn and candy.  Walk around to the right or left and you see this:


The former movie theater turned into fabric store.  Oh, my.  It was huge and filled with quilts and colors and lots of movie memorabilia.


The batiks aisle.




Their classroom is at the back, and is large enough to display these full-sized quilts, plus have room for fat quarter bins around the edges.


View from the classroom.  Way up in the corner, near the ceiling was a quilt designed for the quilt shop–yep, the one in black and white on the upper left.



I liked that they not only had groupings of patterns, but also labeled their bins of fat quarters as to what was in them by theme.



After buying a few things, I was sure now that my suitcase wouldn’t shut on the way home, but we weren’t done yet!



We drove the beautiful Oregon countryside to Corvallis; it wasn’t too far away to Quiltwork Patches, right in downtown Corvallis Oregon.


We’d passed by this shop on our way to dinner the night before, and of course, I was intrigued.  Don’t worry, Beth told me as we drove past, we’ll be here tomorrow.  And for our final stop of the day, we went in after finding a parking place easily.


Quiltwork Patches is on 212 SW 3rd Street in Corvallis, OR 97333; phone number is 541-752-4820.  It’s a friendly place and we were greeted right as we walked in, not only by the owner, but also by well-arranged bolts of fabrics.  I was happy to see a lot of the modern fabrics represented, although she also stocked a full range of batiks, colors, and Kaffe Fasset fabrics.


A good quilt shop has lots of samples to entice quilters to get to work, and Quiltwork Patches had some lovely examples.  I sort of make it a policy not to photograph only quilts when I do a review of a shop, but rather focus on the shop.  So if you wonder why I don’t have straight-on shots, that’s why.  I’m there to explore the shop.  And explore I did.


Quiltwork Patches also had garment and bag samples, as well as good eye-level displays of books and small sewing projects.  The shop was neat and clean and I wanted to spend hours and hours and buckets of money in there.  I’m sure they wouldn’t have objected.




This is the sale room.  Instead of doing punch cards or customer reward points, Quiltwork Patches decided to offer good prices on current fabrics.  I had a fun time browsing through her stock.



Batik wall.


Like Greenbaum’s and JenniLou Creations, this shop had a full range of classes offered up, from beginning classes up to classes for the more experienced quilter.  I saw many things to buy, but had to start somewhere–like this bolt of Anna Maria Horner’s Field Study.  Weighted down by a full day of shopping, good conversation and fabric, Beth dropped me back at my hotel.  We hugged good-bye and promised each other we would do this again sometime.

Quilt Shops

Greenbaum’s Quilted Forest–Salem, Oregon


My friend in Oregon, Beth, picked me up at my hotel bright and early and we headed up to Salem, to the first shop of our day-long shop hop.  Beth really knows how to make a quilter happy, because she is one!  That’s her out front in the yellow raincoat.  We started with Greenbaum’s Quilted Forest, and the address is 140 CommercialStreet NE, Salem, Oregon 97301.  Phone number is 877-700-2233.  Their email is sylvia@quiltedforest.com, and the reason why I mention that is because they are near Sisters, Oregon they do a huge mail-order business and charge no shipping for domestic (US) orders.  Pretty amazing.  We struck up a nice conversation with Lisa, who is the office and events manager, and she filled us in on all the happenings.  More in a minute.


This is the sight that greeted us.  I felt like I was in a forest of quilts–they were everywhere!  They were hanging from the ceiling, displayed over the stair rails, on the walls, draped on tables, everywhere.  So many ideas, so little time!


That’s Lisa, smiling there beside the rows of Kaffe Fassett fabrics.  Greenbaum’s is one of the best 20 quilt shops of all times in the Better Homes and Gardens Quilt Sampler, so they do a lot of things to serve quilters and stock a wide range of fabrics, notions, and books.  One fun thing she dangled in front of us was a bus trip to see the Quilt Show.  The plan is to meet at Greenbaum’s early Friday morning, drive towards Sister, visiting four quilt shops, then overnight in Bend.  The next morning, we’d be all day at the Sisters Quilt Show, then head home that night.  Friday night accommodations are included.  Head to their website for more info: www.quiltedforest.com.


They have a wide range of fabrics, from prints to batiks, to moderns to florals.  I had a hard time making choices (remember I had a carry-on suitcase).


Some quilt shops you go into and it’s a quick glance, a fat quarter and you’re out.  I wanted to keep looking not only because of their friendliness, but also because of the many ideas they had everywhere.  I think that’s where they really excel, if I have to single out one reason.  I feel like I sound sort of glib here–but I thought this was an outstanding quilt shop.  It’s hard to give a sense of it without you being there touching all the fabrics, seeing the sights, quilts and colors, so I’ll just let my photos (lame as they are) do the talking.




I loved the pine tree up on top of their center shelves.



One thing I enjoyed were their little vignettes–a theme, with some books, patterns and fabrics to entice you to try something new.



Their classroom.





The old brick walls are proof they’ve been here a long time–111 years, although in the beginning it was a “dry goods” shop, then in 1948, it was converted to a fabric shop.


I really enjoyed my time here–if you are ever in Portland, Salem is south, over an hour away, but then you can hit shops in Corvallis and Philomath too, which are covered in the next post.