Friday, January 9, 2015

Quilt Bee Night

Tonight we met again for a wonderful evening of quilting.  Our bee is a productive group of ladies and each of us is always working on some project either for ourselves or usually for one of our philanthropy projects for Habitat for Humanity or Quilts of Valor.

Over the past week I have been going through all of my quilting books and magazine and sorting what I wanted to keep or donate to someone else.  I had a huge bag of quilting magazines that I had sorted and have to donate to the guild to sell at our next meeting.  Members bring in their old magazines and the guild sells them and donates the money to God's Pantry to provide food for the needy.  Each magazine can be purchased for 25 cents which is awesome for new quilters who can not afford to purchase quilting magazines for the hefty $6-7 prices in the stores.  It keeps the quilting inspiration flowing from one quilter to another.  I am glad to keep the inspiration going.  I also had a large box of books, most of them brand new which I had purchased from a quilting club over the years.  I had gone through the books and decided which ones I wanted to keep and those I wanted to donate to the guild or other groups.  Suzanne needed door prizes for the Gathering of Quilters sponsored by the Quilters of South Carolina coming up on February 7th.  She was able to take a lot of new books which she can use as door prizes at the meeting.  Another win-win situation for me:  I clean out my studio of books I don't want and she gains door prizes to inspire other quilters!

Mom was working on a quilt for her great grand-daughter Taylor.  Mom had pieced string blocks and wanted to use some of those in the quilt.  Below is a picture of the blocks on the design wall.
Mom used scraps of pinks, lights and purples to piece the scrap blocks from our bins of left over pieces under the cutting table. 
We then cut 8 1/2 inch squares from scraps of purples that we have for the alternating blocks.

Debbie was working on a commission crazy quilt for a client, and Sue was binding a Habitat for Humanity quilt which had been donated by a guild member.  We all had a great time passing the hours away.

Happy Quilting,
Shelia

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Another Quilt of Valor Presentation

My Uncle James Adams was my most recent Quilt of Valor presentation.  He is my last surviving uncle on my dad's side of the family.  He is 82 years old so I wanted to get this done as quickly as possible for him.  

I started by sending signature blocks out to states with family members and having them sign and their friends and families sign the blocks for Uncle Jim.  Once I received all of the blocks back I put the quilt together and quilted it.  

Below is the quilt as I loaded it into my longarm.  I quilted the words honor, courage, valor, service, thank you for your service, as the quilting for the quilt.  It should also remind him that his service is appreciated.

 This is one of the borders where I also quilted words like courage, service etc.
 Below is the QOV label for his quilt.

 Now a close up of some of the signature blocks in the quilt.  The quilt was 80 x 80 and contained 256 signature blocks and every block was signed!!
 We presented the quilt to Jim at our family Christmas dinner on December 13, 2014 at my aunt Elane's house (his sister).  Everyone in the family was aware of the quilt as they had participated in making it by signing blocks......that is everyone but Uncle Jim.  He was totally surprised and moved.  He started getting teary eyed as soon as I started talking and we draped the quilt over his shoulders.  It was a very moving and difficult presentation to make, but reminds me of how special these quilts are to the recipients.  Below is a picture of Uncle Jim, my mom and myself presenting him with the quilt.
Uncle Francis was at the presentation and brought his Quilt of Valor that mom and I had presented to him.  After Uncle Jim's presentation, Uncle Francis showed his quilt to the family and they both commenced telling stories of their time in Korea.  Several hours later they were still reminiscing.  There was not a dry eye in the house as these two revealed so many stories of the events of their service.  Many family members have called and written me to say that this Christmas family dinner was one of the best that they can remember.  No one was in a hurry to leave.  So glad that everyone could be a part of this special presentation.

I am so blessed that quilting has given me the opportunity to make such a special gift for someone.  His service and the service of all of our veterans gives me this precious opportunity.

Happy quilting,
Shelia

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Quilt of Valor Presentations

I have made several Quilt of Valor presentations recently. Two quilts were to two very special Uncles of mine.  The first one was to my Uncle Francis Thompson who served in the Korean War.  Mom pieced the quilt and I quilted and bound the quilt.  We presented it to him in August while his son David was here from Kansas City, KS.  He was surprised and honored to receive the quilt.  He was very moved as he feels that the Korean War Veterans are one of the 'forgotten' groups who so bravely served our country.

Mom used our scraps of 2 1/2 inch strips to make the red and white nine-patch blocks.  Then set them into the quilt with the beautiful blue fabric.

Aunt Nell, Uncle Francis, their son David and his wife Carol were all present for the presentation.
 This was me, Uncle Francis, and mom after the presentation.
Above is left to right, Mom Betty Adams, Carol Thompson, David Thompson, Francis Thompson, Nell Thompson, and myself Shelia Adams Chandler.

After the presentation Uncle Francis insisted that I go visit the Koren War Veterans Memorial that he had helped raise funds for.  
The stepping stones in from of and around the memorial had names of war veterans and other military personnel who had donated toward the memorial.  Proud to see many names from our family there.

I was very proud to be able to present this quilt to my Great Uncle Francis.  Thank you so much for your service to our country.  I'll post the 2nd presentation in the next post.

Happy Quilting,
Shelia

Friday, January 2, 2015

Working On One Of Mom's Scrap Quilts......

My mother is the person who can make a quilt out of anything.  She is always cleaning out the scrap bins that runneth over from cutting out quilts.  She uses all those scraps to piece together tops for philanthropy for our guild.  I have lost count of the number of quilts she has made for Habitat for Humanity for our guild.

This below is one of the current quilts I am quilting for her.  This is a string pieced scrap quilt she pieced from all of those pieces that would have been thrown out in the trash.  At $10-12 per yard for fabric, this is an amazing saving for us.  This is the quilt in my long arm while I'm quilting it.


I LOVE looking at the fabrics and remembering where they were used in the original quilts we pieced.  Below is a picture of the free-hand quilting I'm doing on the quilt.  I love just quilting away with a design that pops into my head.
In the next picture you can see the scrappy string pieced border that she did.  I love how those little pieces make such a great border.


She pieced the pieces onto phone book pages, then we used the Accuquilt to cut them into 4-inch x 6-inch pieces.  She then just pieced the pieces end to end and pulled the paper off. 
Nice finish to a scrappy quilt.

Happy Quilting,
Shelia


Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy New Year.................... Welcome 2015

 I'm Back To Quilting Again....... And So glad to have this new year starting......

It's been a long year away from the blog but I am back and lots to share with everyone over the coming months.  My hiatus from the blog has had numerous reasons, time mainly, but also completing my 2nd nursing degree......BSN completed!!  I finished my last class on December 17, 2014.  YIPPIE!!

Since then I have been quilting and cleaning in my studio to get everything ready for a busy year of quilting.  I've taken down every book and magazine I have related to quilting.  I'm going through them one by one and either keeping, donating to the guild for hostess gifts, donating to the guild library, or sending to my daughter for her library.  The magazines I am going through and pulling out pictures of inspirational quilts that I want to keep.  I put these in page protectors and put into a 3-ring binder.  Then whenever I need some inspiration I can go through these books.  I started that process when I began quilting in 1992.  I have several books with quilts that I still love and may replicate someday.

Thanks for all of the e-mails wondering where I've been.  My bee girls have questioned numerous time when I would be returning to my blog but now is the time, a new year and new goals for quilting for 2015.

One thing I am going to do with the cleaning up and out of my studio is again make a list of the current UFO's (Unfinished objects 'projects') that I have.  Sort through them and decide which to finish first.  I currently have one of mom's scrap quilts in the longarm working on it.  She of course can piece 5 quilt tops to my one.....we still call her the 'energizer bunny' in our bee group.   


On a 'lighter' note ......



Roger and I have been doing Weight Watchers and walking since June of 2014.  I've lost 45 pounds and Roger has lost 46 pounds.  We feel great and are loving walking together. 

We are off to visit Roger's mother in Florida.  Looking forward to some warmer weather for a day or two.

Happy Quilting,
Shelia

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Cleaning Studio And Sorting Scrap Buckets

Today has been a day of running errands and now cleaning my studio.  I decided that my scrap buckets under the Accuquilt were way past running over and needed to be contained some how.  I decided to sort them into red/white/blue patriotic scraps which could be used to make another Quilt of Valor, another bin for regular scraps and a third bin for crumbs.  My wonderful husband decided to take a break from painting the house and helped me sort.  We were making great progress until Mr. Whiskers decided to dive into the scrap bucket.
See this face.....who could be mad at that face????  "What....can't I help sort?"
Now we have sorted the scraps into these bins.  Looks much better now.  Hopefully someone will be able to take the red/white/blue ones and piece a scrappy patriotic quilt.  There were some beautiful scraps that we have cut into the last few QOV that we pieced.  Should be a great mix of fabrics for the next one from fabric that would have been thrown away a few years ago.
The last bin is the crumb bin.....which was the hardest pile for my husband to agree to put pieces into.  But a great mix of small pieces of fabric are here.
The leaves are gorgeous right now and in my yard falling by the millions.  Seems like our oak trees never fail to be putting something down....ie., acorns, leaves, etc.  Oh well, we love the shade so no whinning.  Now on to getting another quilt loaded into the longarm. 
Happy Quilting,
Shelia