Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Just for Fun & a Few Things to Ponder ....

Haha ... there have been times!

So very true!

We all have a few of them, don't we?!
I know we've all seen this before, but it makes me laugh every time!
This cracks me up--these guys are so cute!


 Hope you had some smiles and some things to think about

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Chomping vs Champing ...

Any way you look at it the bit is being bitten and I'm the one doing the chomping (or if you prefer, champing)!

After months of work my first quilt pattern is about to head to the printers--YIPPEE! I've been working with Sandy from Cedar Rapids and she's a dream. As a matter of fact, Sandy is nearing the end of writing instructions for my second pattern while I tie up the loose ends on the first. Here we are deep in conversation at the recent quilt show in Dubuque.
With quilt pattern instruction writer extraordinaire -- Sandy
The first pattern I will be debuting is a baby quilt/wall hanging that is referred to in Quilters of The Bunco Club: Phree and Rosa. I made samples in pink, blue, yellow/green, and an alternative center block. I shot pictures of the samples on a clear, sunny day this week and have been working on the cover of the pattern.
Here's the pink version as I was preparing to photograph it:
The center is a fabric panel of a drawing I did several years ago of a rocking horse.
I've been running the numbers past some printers, and I'm hoping to trot my digital files over to one of them on Tuesday of next week to get the printing started. At this point I have a small amount of fabric ready to kit, and I'm torn about selling the patterns on my site or just at quilt shows and events. ARGH! So many decisions!

Over the years, like many quilters, I have designed several quilts for myself: sewed a little, added here and there, changed/ripped a lot of seams, and when my Bernina has done its magic, I am happy with the unique quilt that I created. It always seemed so fun. I MUST confess that I was VERY naive in thinking this would be a quick OR easy project (but it HAS been fun). I will forever view quilt patterns in a new light and with a deep appreciation for all of the work that those few printed pages represent!

The "Knit Lit" group from the Park Forest Library is gathering to discuss The Bunco Club and has invited me to join them tonight. Everyone is welcome! Bring your books, knitting, and quilts--Let's do it ladies. Can't wait to meet you!
Hosted by Park Forest Public Library

Last week I enjoyed a wonderful luncheon at the Calumet Country Club with the South Suburban Newcomers group. After lunch I spoke to the group about my books, my "late in life journey," and sold/signed my books to this enthusiastic club. Thanks for a fun and memorable afternoon, ladies.

There has been progress, very little, but progress nonetheless. I intend to go off the grid for Memorial Day weekend and write, write, write for three full days!


Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Vending Is Fun When Quilters Are Involved!

This past Sunday was Mother's Day, and I want to take a sec to give a big nod to all Mothers. As females, we seem to have a special talent for nurturing. Whether it walks on two legs or four, has fur, beaks, or fins most of us are naturals at loving and caring for others. So if you'll all excuse one final Mother's Day shout out ... to my mom, Helen DeWitt, (who has been gone for 18 years). I love this picture of her. I find it so mysterious and even haunting to see photos of parents before you were born.
Helen Munro DeWitt ~ 1918-1996

Moving along smartly, I spent this past Friday and Saturday in one of my favorite cities... Dubuque, Iowa, at the Cable Car Quilters Guild Quilt Show. Book and art sales were brisk and I met soooo many fun and interesting people.  One thing for sure, no matter the age, quilters are a very ACTIVE group of women! Wow!

I finally got to meet my pattern writer face-to-face, SandyFromCedarRapids (I have to say her name as though it is one word because I have three other friends named Sandy and it get's really confusing!). What a nice person she is! We spent time together going over the next few patterns on which we'll be working. One thing is for sure that I couldn't do this "pattern thing" without her, and I'm happy she is on this crazy new journey with me. I hope to be posting photos of the first pattern soon.
With pattern writer, SandyFromCedarRapids.
So here are just a FEW of the fun, and I mean really fun, women that I met at the quilt show last weekend:

Meet Valorie and Kim...what a stitch! Valorie told a story about reading and loving the Elm Creek Series by Jennifer Chiaverini and how she thought that the retreat in that story was real. Apparently she kept telling people she wanted to go there for her birthday, until someone finally broke the news to her that it was fiction!
With Valorie and Kim--couldn't stop laughing!
 Two of Kim's quilts that were in the show. I just bought the pattern for the one on the left when I was in Rockford a few weeks ago. Beautifully done, Kim...
Kim's Quilts. Notice the First and Second Place ribbons one her quilts. Stunning!

This crazy-fun group of women call themselves the "Sew Fun Group" and let me just say that they are perfectly named...they were SEW FUN!
With the Sew Fun Group. I want to be part of the Sew Fun Group...maybe they'll make me an honorary member!

Connie and Tina visited with their mother (not in the picture). Again fun, fun, fun ladies!

With Connie and Tina. Connie is a long-arm quilter.

My vendor neighbor, Sherry, co-owner of Quilting Bee in Galesburg, Illinois. I've GOT to get to her shop sounds great.
With Sherry -- vendor extraordinaire!

Ready to see some gorgeous quilts?
This won the Viewer's Choice Award. The pic doesn't do it justice!

This quilt is one of the patterns that SandyFromCedarRapids wrote the instructions for! It's called "Basket Lattice".

The Quilts of Valor Booth with the QOV Iowa coordinator, Cyndy Billmeyer.
Well, I think I've yakked enough for one day. Hope you enjoyed the recap of this wonderful Iowa quilt show. Until next time...

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

In Need of a Quilt Show Fix

I've been packing up the car today and will be heading to Dubuque, Iowa, tomorrow to take part in the Cable Car Quilters "Colors in Motion Quilt Show." As many of you might know, or have figured out by now, my hubby and I fell in love with Dubuque (and all things Iowa) when our son did his four year college stint at Loras College.
I've been expanding my vending repertoire and am excited to have added a new "grid wall" to my booth. Although I admit it wasn't all that much fun trying to get three 2 foot by 6 foot panels (with feet attached) into my van--but I did it! I also have a new batch of "Spool Art" to include with my note cards. I had sooo hoped to have my first pattern ready for sale at this show but, alas, the samples that I made are not back from the long-arm quilter yet. The pattern itself is expertly written (materials list, assembly and cutting instructions) by Sandy of Cedar Rapids. I am darn happy the two of us connected--she's been a dream to work with and the good news is I'll be meeting her in person for the first time on Friday!

New note card designs
DBQ here we come--Packed and ready to roll!

I also want to give a shout out to Top Shelf Quilts in Frankfort, Illinois. Paula and her crew welcomed me once again to talk about my books, read from Quilters of the Bunco Club: Phree & Rosa, share my quilts with a Bed Turning, and end the evening by selling and signing my books and art. Thank you Top Shelf far my favorite shop in this area!

I have some more packing to do so I've gotta run. Thanks for taking a peek...I should have pics up next week from Dubuque. Till then.......