Sunday, April 29, 2012

Auction T-shirt Quilt

We couldn't stretch it out too much..the wind kept blowing it all over!

 93x93 inches of gloriously stained, stinky (perfume!) and colorful 8th grader t-shirts quilt is done!

Fits a queen bed beautifully with a nice drop of at least 12-18 inches on each side.

Blue minky backing makes it absolutely comfy! 
The picture above was sent along with a few others to the 8th grade parents Friday night.  I wanted to make sure that if they didn't like the idea of a bunch of t-shirts on their bed, they could always just fold it so all the memories were tucked up inside at the end of their bed!

Did I mention how heavy it was?
9 lbs heavy
 How do I know? 
I weighed it!
Why did I want to know?
When you spend 10 hrs on your longarm machine and halfway through, the crank stops working when you want to wind the makes you wonder!  
Did I BREAK something?
 As soon as I unpinned the quilt off the leaders, Ole Betsy groaned in relief and the crank was back in action! 

I had to get at least a tiny bit of modern fabric on it, so dotted binding was the flavor of the day. Five hours to bind. Ugh.

The "Carnival" variegated thread by Superior Threads 
(purchased from sewn with a "popcorn" pantograph pattern.  Regrets?  I should have used an even larger pattern.  It was very dense, but I couldn't turn back once I realized it!

And I am now very "into" making borders for my printed quilt labels.  I am not sure if anyone else does this, but I always find a poem, if I can, to place on the label.  Especially if it an auction quilt for our school like this one. I also added in the 20th anniversary logo to commemorate the special year!

The only thing that I just didn't expect and want to pass on to you, my quilting friends, is the fact that certain t-shirts had an almost rubbery printing on them.  It was NOT very friendly with the foot of my long arm machine. I had to slow down, stop and go to get it "unstuck".  Sometimes it would even snap the thread.

I can say, however, the Pellon Tricot Stabilizer was AMAZING. 
All 15 yards of it! Yes..I used every single bit of the bolt except for an 18 x24 inch square.  A few asked about it and the one thing I must say is to make sure you read the directions that come with it very thoroughly.  There is a stretch to the tricot and you must make sure when you fuse it to the backs of the t-shirts, you iron it on the opposite direction of the t-shirt stretch.

And you can quote me about the following.

I feel confident that I will make more of these in the future....however, minus about 30 or so of the t-shirts.

Despite all the planning HERE, and all of the trouble Button caused during this adventure.  And thank you for all the encouragement HERE!  I am really happy with it!
 I am anxious to hear how well it did at the auction Saturday night, but it always seems to be a secret!

Are you surprised that I have three or four quilts on my mind and already have my studio closet cleaned up and ready to go for some projects?

I am.

Friday, April 27, 2012

My Number One Fan

Took this today....just 'cuz he is cute!  

I was laying out the quilt to do measurements for the binding and he ran over and said,


Blurry picture due to the fact that he kept spinning on it!

 So, of course, I had to take a picture!


Wednesday, April 25, 2012


I think I just may have won the war!!!!

In case you didn't stop by last week, I have been on a mission to finish one 8th grade Auction T-shirt Quilt by today.

It has gone from Beast to Mammoth!

I started out with a plan to do red in the middle and work my way out to blue, a bit of a rainbow effect.

But the pink threw me off.

So I tried to go random...I didn't even take a picture because it was so awful...the red and blue were such a large amount, that there was not a good way to embrace the random.

I let it sit for a day and did some odds and ends chores in my laundry room. 

I fiddled on EQ7.

I then decided that there was enough red and blue t-shirts to make a "border".  Then an inside row of whites and grays.  I then concentrated the very small, but very bold orange, pink, and yellow t-shirts in the center.

At that point I had to concede the battle to the shirts...not to mention Enemy number one:  BUTTON!

 Hands behind his back and one sock off...never a good sign.
 He loved to pull the shirts off the design board and try to throw them in the wash.  He is a tricky one, that young one!

I have made progress and have almost completely pieced each row, and the rows together.  

Today's plan is to finish the piecing... is a breeze with the Tricot stabilizer! 

And I plan to have Mammoth on Ole Betsy by late morning/early afternoon.

The binding and backing await....

All other projects...COMPLETELY on hold in the meantime! 
The auction is Saturday!!

Linking up with Lee!

click on image

I just hope that I am alive by Saturday morning.  Check on me, okay?

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Radio Silence

Since I have nothing to share and can't really spare the time to take photos and write up a decent blog post.

A Button video for your entertainment.

One of his many favorite past times....barking at the neighbor's dog.

Click right hand corner to enlarge!


Sunday, April 22, 2012

It's Coming...

Amy's Creative Side

To a blog near YOU! 

I think about 50%, maybe even more, of my followers found me through the Blogger's Festival.

About 50% of my Google Reader is filled with blogs I have found at the very same place.

I like to think of it as a virtual meeting place for quilters!

This year Amy is doing things a bit be sure to go to her blog, Amy's Creative Side, and check them out! 

In the meantime, I will have to figure out which quilt to enter. 

I have these that I finished this year since the last Festival.

I know I won't submit this one!

And as I was perusing my photo library, I had forgotten I did these two after the festival in the Fall.

And then, there is wishful thinking that I might have all three of these projects done by the deadline.


Tough decisions for me to make.  
I just don't know.

What DO I know? 

I know that I want to see my fellow quilters joining in too!


Oh...and let's just hope Mr. Boss doesn't see this post.  I am always complaining that I am not getting everything done..and all those photos just blow my cover. 
 7 completely finished quilts since October...yikes!

Friday, April 20, 2012


I entered Button's quilt into a 
"Quilts with Just Squares and Rectangles" contest 
at Quilt Gallery HERE.

I realize that it isn't FABULOUS and isn't going to win.

Then I thought...why not?  A chance to win a gift certificate at 

Why not?

I need some backing fabric for my Retro Flower QAL project. I had bit of change of heart about the fabric choice I had before.

Tracey at Traceyjay quilts knew that I am a lover of French General and she has been de-stashing like crazy and offered to make me a bundle and throw in some yardage!

This is just a smidgen of what she sent me!! She stuffed a mailer to the gills with all sorts of yummy scraps!!

Note a t-shirt for THE QUILT in the upper right corner?
 I wish I had a better photo, but, alas, I am still having trouble with my camera. The new batteries arrived, but my charger still didn't work.  Now I must wait for a new battery charger!

 Since it all arrived, I realized I need some of this :

Rouenneries Deux Oyster Texture Yardage
SKU# 13529-22

Wondering how you can help?
Can you vote HERE?

I have a few quilts that meet the requirements for the next few weekly contests...just so I can up my chances.  And if you get distracted by other quilts, that is okay.  I am a big girl!  I can always just buy it and find a coupon code in the bloggy world, right?

  You can vote up to 7 quilts from your computer!

Thursday, April 19, 2012


the enemy is sneakier than I thought....
The platoon sent in their strongest weapon....

So much for the baby safety locks I put on my drawers Sunday.

I underestimated them...didn't the OPORD say that I should never underestimate the enemy?

I didn't take into account that he could still access my stuff through the sides....
Not my finest moment!
The fight continues!

Pray for me...

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

In the Trenches

My Operation Orders

Task Organization: My mission is to finish one t-shirt auction quilt AKA "the beast" in 7 days with all the firepower I can use.

Taken earlier in the week...not the final layout.
I.  Situation: The school auction is set for the date of the 28th of this month. I have ramped up my due date to the 25th in case there are any diversions from the mission.

A. Enemy Forces
1. Weather and light data: the general forecast is looking good. No new rain in sight.  Could be distracting when any window gazing might occur.
2. Terrain:  Be prepared for piles of toys, dishes in the sink, backpacks on the floor, and shoes in the family room.
3. Identification of enemy forces: Four small males. Highly dangerous with weapons of mass destruction. 
4. Locations: Game room, family room, kitchen, pool, and driveway.  Don't underestimate school or extracurricular activities.
5. Activity: The enemy is in constant attack position.
6. Strength: A small platoon.   Ages 15, 12, 9, and 14 months.  Morale is low due to the absence of father-figure on a business trip.  Capabilities?  Unknown.  They are very inconsistent and can't be trusted. Do not underestimate their capabilities.
7. Probable courses of action when contacted:  They will fight, disperse, retreat, gather themselves, and attack again.

B. Friendly Forces.
Domestic Sewing Machine AKA Symphony.

C. Attachments/Detachments.
One Long Arm Machine AKA Ole Betsy on stand-by.

II. Mission:  

My mission is to finish one t-shirt auction quilt consisting of approximately 70+ t-shirts before the due date. I repeat, finish the t-shirt quilt!

III. Execution
A. Concept of the Operation:  They must be completely cut, pieced, quilted, and bound in 7 days.
B. Task to Maneuver Units: Avoid all distractions such as things like pincushion I made Sunday HERE, that I really don't need.

Cathedral Window Pincushion

C. Tasks to Combat Support Units:  Fellow bloggers and online sewing friends must be on FULL alert in case I am in need of advice.
D. Coordinating Instructions: I will email, beg, and plead for help, if need be.

IV.  Service Support
A. General: Good movies, good music, late nights.
B. Materials and Supplies: Rotary Cutter, Mat, Stabilizer, Thread, Pins, Pantograph, Batting....the usual.

Superior Rainbow Thread from

C. Medical: Coke, Lemon heads, Laffy Taffies, Short Naps

V. Command and Signal
A. Command: Myself.
B. Signal:  Call sign: Crazy Lady   Code Word: PATCHWORK

Praying the troops can rally me at


 If you see any color smoke...please send in reinforcements.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Sunday Project: A Pincushion...


Cathedral Window Pincushion

I am in the midst of working on the Auction T-shirt quilt and needed to walk away from it last night and have something calming to do.

It really truly only took me an hour to hand piece it together!  I was inspired by all of the Cathedral Window pincushions I have seen lately, but I didn't use a tutorial because I already learned from my mom who learned from my Great-Aunt Kay!

A vanity cushion cover I inherited from her!

How convenient is THAT?

I admittedly, did not do the BEST job my first go 'round, but it was a lot easier than I had remembered. 

If you are looking for a good tutorial, I found this one on Moda Bake Shop HERE.  I also found a link on another blog (sorry..cannot for the life of me remember who!) to another tutorial that is closer to the way I learned from my mom HERE at Sunflower seeds. 
 I especially like how she uses contrasting thread on the white!

The inherent difference from those are that they are machine stitched and I did my cushion with hand-stitched hidden ladder stitches.

(I am pretty sure my mom did running stitches like my Great-Aunt Kay did below).

Rough around the edges...I sure wish I knew the date when she made this!

I loved how I finally used the crushed walnut shells that I found at the pet store (by the way, petco carried them in my area, not PetSmart!)

However, one simple problem...

Larry, our lizard...He is always sneaking in from the garage and I am always shooing him out the window in the studio!

you have to travel through the reptile aisle.

And one small pincushion doesn't even make a DENT in the 10 quart bag! 

Now I know EXACTLY why I see so many pincushions on blogs and Flickr...

We thrifty frugal ladies can't stand to have it wasted!!!

Button thought it was wonderful from the button at the top to the pins that he loves to play with that I am always taking away. 

  But more importantly? 
 It's very nice weight as a flying object. 
He used the word "ball"  when he picked it up.
Now my thinking cap is on...

But back to the t-shirt quilt I go.  
 Working on the more breaks for me.

T-shirt quilt countdown
10 days.


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