Wednesday, December 31, 2014

2014 ALYofF: Twelve Finishes!

A big thanks to Shanna and Melissa for the quilty motivation this year!!

 As we all find ourselves wrapping up 2014, it's rewarding to see all that  has been accomplished. I myself met each of my monthly ALYofF goals this year and it was pretty fun to see them all together in a collage:
Looking back, I'm also grateful for everyone's support and encouragement throughout the year. You wouldn't think a sinple comment would make such a difference, but they really do! If ya by chance missed one of my monthly quilts here's the link to all my ALYofF's for a quick peek at each one. I haven't given much thought to 2015, but am sure as the new year arrives, I'll find my motivation. Until then I'm linking up with everyone else at The ALYofF Finale Party and wish each of you a great start to the new year!
My Button
 With smiles,

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Tuesday Archives #43: Log Cabin Quilts

Val's Quilting Studio

Well happy Tuesday Archives everyone!
 Time to dig through your past posts and share any and all post that highlight a Log Cabin.


I'm currently reading the The Runaway Quilt by Jennifer Chiaverini (An Elm Creek Quilt Novel) and was doing a little research myself as they actually referenced to the center of the block being black and not red, as I thought was traditional for a Log Cabin Quilt.
 I found this article on the American Quilter's Society website and here is a excerpt I found interesting:
 Early Log Cabin blocks were hand-pieced using strips of fabrics around a central square. In traditional Log Cabin blocks, one half is made of dark fabrics and the other half light. A red center symbolized the hearth of home, and a yellow center represented a welcoming light in the window. Anecdotal evidence, based on oral folklore, suggests that during the Civil War, a Log Cabin quilt with a black center hanging on a clothesline was meant to signal a stop for the Underground Railroad.

I also found a free eBook from Fons & Porter's Love of Quilting which features three different types of log cabin quilting blocks. Just click the picture:

Monday, December 29, 2014

ALYofF Dec. Layer Cake Finish

Woot Woo! With the continued help of my buddy Jackson, I get to share one more finish for 2014. This time I think the cold really had him wound up, as he kept running all over my quilt as I tried to take pictures! I finally picked him up and said: "stay". 
(I think you can tell by the look in his eyes he got in trouble! LOL! ) 

During our Tuesday Archives Layer Cake Linky, there where a lot of layer cake patterns to choose from as I set out to create a quilt from an Aneela Hoey Cherry Christmas layer cake for my December ALYofF goal. I chose to use this Spinning Pinwheels pattern from Shannon at Modern Tradition Quilts.

 I did modify the sashing, but I just love the BIG  pinwheels in this pattern:

And though I didn't get a good picture of the quilting, as my fingers were getting very cold and I couldn't even think of turning the quilt over as Jackson continued to crazy run and jump around me, I do want to make a personal note that I used a pantograph called: Christmas Cookies. It's very whimsical with trees, snowmen, candy canes, gingerbread men, snowflakes, and hearts dancing across the quilt.

  And here it awaits. I love it's cute little red backing and candy caned stripped binding all pressed, clipped and ready to be stitiched. I'm over the moon happy, as I have family gathering from afar at our house for the week as we come together to celebrate Christmas/New Years. I can't wait to sit next to the fireplace stitiching and visiting with my mom as she knits, the kids as they chill and the grandson as he gets into everything and his mom gets to chase him not me! LOL!
I hope the holiday season finds you surrounded by the love & comfort of friends and family. We've been blessed with a white Christmas and safe family travels. Tomorrow's Tuesday Archives theme is Log Cabins. I hope you'll stop by! Until then, I'm linking up my final finish with everyone else at ALYofF and a few other parties listed on my linky page.
With Smiles,

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Applique BOM Found!

Yep....right there in my very own piles of WIP's I found this Antique Flower Garden Project from  KimSchaefer's Flower Festival book. This is block #50 called Yippee Twist:

When I first learned to applique, I found this BOM to be too difficult for my beginner hands. Now a few years later, I feel able to tackle it.
This will be one of the projects I'll look forward to sharing throughout 2015. I have missed having an applique project and am looking forward to sharing this on Sunday's at Kathy's.
With Smiles,

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas!!

Merry Christmas to you, my awesome blogging friends and followers!
With Smiles,

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Tuesday Archives #42: Christmas 2014

Look at me, late to my own party! LOL!!
Val's Quilting Studio
Well happy Tuesday Archives everyone and what better way to celebrate the season than with a Christmas theme this week!


I feel in love with Christine's Christmas Quilt, of which she made twenty years ago. Her blog is called Quilting Stories, and she always has the most beautiful quilts and most inspiring photography. She's one of those people I wish I could meet in person and just sit and have a cup of tea with as we stitched. We met through last years Grow Your Blog event and I'm so gragteful we did! (If you haven't participated in the event before, check out my sidebar for information. It starts Jan.25th)
Christmas quilt

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Slow Stitching by Little Hands

  Oh how I treasure those precious gifts our girl's use to make in Elementary school, then quietly sneak home in the backpacks and secretly hide under the Christmas tree.  
This one was made by our oldest when she was in about Fifth Grade.

I love it's large uneven stitches and carefully sewn buttons. A little burlap, yarn and buttons and you too have a a holiday sewing project for a young one in your family too.

It always make me smile as it decorates our hallway for the whole month of December. 

 I think relaxation is catching up with me as I too am moving slow. I'm officially on break from teaching and welcome the lazy, quiet days ahead. It's been raining for three days, which in normal years (like last year) would have accumilated into about two feet of snow by now. But not this year. As with everyone else, we are unseasonably warm. But this does mean safe travel for family members near and far, so I'll take that instead of two feet of snow for sure! 

So what am up to today?? Besides sleeping in and sitting around in my jammies?
Today I'll sew some binding on a queen size quilt.
I'm thinking about my:
 15 Quilty Resolutions for 2015
....and I'm looking for a new Applique project to start. I find myself missing my applique as ever since I finished by Garden Party Quilt I haven't done any! (What!) So if you have found or can recommend a fun applique BOM for 2015, please do share, maybe I'll join ya! I'm linking up with everyone else to share and visit over at Kathy's Quilts.
Happy Slow Stiching Sunday! 
WIth smiles,

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Sport's Tie Baby Bibs

Are these not the funnest baby bibs!! 
We live in Boise State and Oregon Duck fan area.  
A co-worker at my husband's work was selling these for a scholarship fund. 
Hmmmm wonder if I can "dissect them" to make my own pattern??

And here's a picture of our little guy wearing his on Christmas morning:
So cute and creative, I just had to share.
With smiles,

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Tuesday Archives #41: Long-Arm Quilting

Welcome to the linky party that let's you rejuvenate your old quilting/sewing posts! 
(Santa has our list of upcoming December themes ready! Check over in my sidebar.)

Val's Quilting Studio


I'm a long-arm quilter.
I enjoy teaching myself the art of long-arm quilting. I mean, seriously, no one told me when I received my first box of crayons as a child, I'd grow up and be able to draw and design on fabric.  I have found all aspects of quilting to be my "happiness" muse as I transition into this new chapter of  life as an empty-nester and grandparent. (How does time pass so quickly?) I specialize in Edge to Edge Quilting for customer quilts and feel grateful to be able to create a quilt myself from beginning to end.
I enjoy Freemotion Fun.

 I also have an extensive selection of pantographs to choose from. 
I'll link my Long-Arm Quilting information page below but what I'm really looking forward to seeing in this week's linky party is YOUR long-arm quilting!! I keep a list of  all my favorite bloggers who Long-Arm too in my right margin (let me know if yours isn't there so I can add it too!) as I constantly find inspiration from you! I'm grateful for our virtual quilting group of blogging friends who so generously share and support eachother.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Sat. Sampler Catch-up

Finally getting caught up on my Saturday Samplers. Whew! These are just 6 1/2" blocks and if you've been following me for any amount of time, you know how much I don't like "little". But I love this Deb Strain fabric line I chose and even more, the Saturday every month I get to spend with a quilty friend as we venture together to our Saturday Sampler meeting. I love getting into a quilt store. I love seeing what every one else is up to. We have fun shopping afterwards and going to lunch. So today, that's what I'm up to get my December block and lunch with a quilty friend.



I almost redid this block due it's many imperfections, but am glad I didn't.
Tommorrow is my sew day and I can't wait!! I'm going to work on my ALYofF layer cake quilt with Hallmark Christmas movies on as I sew! I might not even get out of my jammies!! So, with that said, what are you up to this weekend?
With smiles,

Thursday, December 11, 2014

That Very First Sewing Kit

Do you remember your very first sewing kit? 
Mine was received at Christmas many, many years ago. It was from my Aunt and Uncle from back East. (We lived on the West Coast of the United States) And I can  remember thinking that it was the very best present very own sewing kit! And yes, being the sentimental type, I still have it:
Were you young? A teenager? An adult? When you received your very first sewing kit?  I was young, probably still in elementary school, as I can remember my hands being small as I stitched the contents of this little red basket together:
Oh the combination of yarn, felt and cotton...along with embellishments of ric-rak and buttons...I was hooked! My mom taught me my first braid.  I learned to carefully stitch so spaces didn't show inbetween. I loved having my own little basket of sewing "stuff".
I felt proud to be a little like my mom who always sewed our clothes: ( you have it, an "adorable" version of myself at five years old. This was my Kindergarten Graduation and as you can tell by my expression, I was a Tomboy thinking: "I hate this hair, this dress, OMG do I really have to wear these tights...they itch!" It's mom knows, as I got in trouble for running around trying to "smoosh" that beehive down before we even left the house! I probably got a hole in those tights too! LOL!)
Kindergarten Graduation -Arizona 1970's Christmas! Is there a young one on your list you could put a little burlap sewing kit together for? Perhaps you too will plant the seeds of a future quilter. 
(Even if they are a tomboy at heart...ya just never know!)
With smiles!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Tuesday Archives #40: Lap Quilts

Welcome to the linky party that let's you rejuvenate your old quilting/sewing posts! 
(Santa has our list of upcoming December themes ready! Check over in my sidebar.)

Val's Quilting Studio


Sometimes the only thing better than a new quilt right out of the dryer, all crinkly and soft, is seeing it being used by a loved one. My day was made when our son-in-law texted me this picture of our little guy waking up from his nap...all cuddled up in his
Eye Spy quilt next to Daddy:
This week is all about sharing those ulitmate compliments when a quilt is transformed into that perfect quilty hug like Jasmine who blogs at Quilt Kisses always seems to do so well! I had to skim a bit, but I found one of my favorite older posts of hers titled: Three Small Quilts. If you haven't stopped by her! Her boys are adorable and they truly enjoy every lap quilt she creates for them!

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Flowered Quilting & A "Treat"

Spent the early afternoon quilting this commissed baby quilt:
It measures a simple 36x45 size and is going to be cuddly soft for baby as it's made of flannel with a few minky fabrics scattered between. The creator used a "puffy" batting so I kept the quilting simple in hopes the flowers will puff a little once it's washed!

I always include a little thank you "treat" when I return quilts.  I thought I'd share today's M&M one as it would make a cute little "stocking stuffer" for your fellow quilting friends and/or be something fun to share at your next quilter's gathering:

Here's the: Help While You Are Quilting sayings:
Green when you can't cut straight.
Orange when your seam allowznce is not 1/4 inch.
Red when your are irritated that you can't find the right fabric.
Yellow when you have to milter corners.
Brown when you measured once and cut twice.
Blue when your points don't match!

As one can imagine, my bag emptied pretty quick!
With smiles,

Thursday, December 4, 2014

ALYofF Dec.Goal/Layer Cake Quilt

Wahooo!!! For all us ALYofF's almost time to celebrate! We have made it to month number twelve!!! Admittably, I bought this Aneela Hoey Cherry Christmas layer cake, the backing and border material two years ago!! ( was on clearance and how could a fabric loving girl like myself resist??) So with that said, I want to finally get this all made into a cozy winter quilt. I'm still checking out all the links at this week's Tuesday Archives Layer Cake's posts. But I'm close to picking my pattern and plan to cut into this yummy layer cake this weekend!

Nothing better than sewing while it's cold outside! But I do wonder, if  you're able to fit in any sewing during this busy time of year?? If so, when?
My big sew day is my husband works and I don't.
 I then then busy myself during the week with hand stitching in the evenings after work.
Off to link up with everyone else at:
Thanks for stopping by!
With smiles!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Tuesday Archives #39: Layer Cake Quilts

Welcome to the linky party that let's you rejuvenate your old quilting/sewing posts! 
(Santa has our list of upcoming December themes ready! Check over in my sidebar.)

Val's Quilting Studio


If ya ask me, the only thing a little, itty bit better than a quilty layer cake we can eat. one we can make into a quilt! Especially because I have this Chistmas Layer Cake just waiting to be made into a cozy winter quilt for around the fire:

Sunday, November 30, 2014

ALYofF Nov. Wonky Scrappy Stars Finish-UPDATED!

Admittably, THIS has been my BIGGEST ALYofF goal this year. More times than not, I asked myself why I chose THIS as my goal right now!!!It's been awhile since I've tackled a queen size quilt. There were numerous moments I did not think I'd make my goal this month as it got a little overwhelming. But thankfully, I got an extra snow day from school, my walks were lessoned due to the weather and my husband worked some 8 to 8 shifts. So I perservered...knowing I couldn't give up, this close to the end. I sewed rows together and added two borders. I made a back with a scrappy row down the middle to give me that extra foot of width I needed:
Rows sewn together and borders added.
Backing was made.

I ironed six yards of fabric as even though I was lucky enough to find my backing for 35% OFF... it unfortunately had those deep crinkled wrinkles in it was sitting in a sale bin too long...LOL!
Six yards of backing got ironed.

It took me the rest of a Sunday morning to get it all loaded on the long-arm, and then a couple of days after school/work to quilt it.  I love this Fancy Star pantograph and thought it complimented the quilt well. 
Fancy Star Pantograph in a black
solid thread adds to this quilt's Primitive style.

And here it is FINISHED on our guest room bed:

Jackson couldn't resist getting in on the "photo shoot" and wanted me to make sure I showed you the black 3inch black border along with the 6inch scrappy border:

And if you were our guest and woke up under this cozy quilt, here's that view:
I can't tell you how very HAPPY I am to have this WIP done!!
It's such a collection of Buggy Barn learning projects/classes that have been sitting around for years.  I also feel pretty thrifty having them all put together into a primitive sytle quilt and even better there is practically NO fabric left over!! LOVE THAT don't you!?
WHEW!!! I'm done!
THANK YOU for the motivation:
Shanna of Fiber of All Sorts and Melissa of Sew BitterSweet Designs. Click  and stop by and check out everyone's November finishes and  Hey! Thanks a bunch for stopping by to see mine.

With Smiles,
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