February 20, 2014

Lots of Dots

And a little bit of fun! Another almost black and white quilt, and more intrigue with the modern style. This one was going to be lots of colors, but I gravitated to black and white. Probably because it was easier to decide what fabrics to use! I quilted it with variegated thread to give it a little sparkle. It is 33x38, a nice size for a walhanging.




February 14, 2014

Happy Valentine's Day!

I love Valentine's Day :) I have been busy quilting for other people, but recently I pieced and quilted a black and white tumbler block lap quilt. The quilting design is called Modern Maze, and I used a multi-colored variegated thread. I like the way it gives the quilt a tiny hint of color!




October 6, 2013

The Local Fair

I always do my best when quilting. And I rarely see a quilt again once it goes back to its owner. Who knows where it might turn up! A client recently told me that the quilt she had meticulously pieced, and I had meticulously quilted, won a blue ribbon at the local Guilford Fair! Now I know a lot of quilters who have a lot of ribbons from a lot of fairs. But the fairs around here do now allow me to enter anything because I am a professional. Not a professional piecer, just a professional quilter. Someone else can piece the quilt and I can quilt it, but I am not allowed to piece my own quilt. Makes no sense to me, but that's the way it is. So anyway, I am very pleased that the quilt won :)


July 22, 2013

New Ventures

Well, it's not exactly a brand new venture. I bought the new "toy" 11 months ago! It's a Brother PR1000e 10 needle embroidery machine and it's awesome! I have so many ideas and envision many new projects. I'm not sure where it will lead me but I'm up for the ride!


Here is something I did today, it's a linen tea towel. I prewashed the towel so it won't shrink after the embroidery is done, that way it won't pucker. I think it turned out great!


July 7, 2013

Illusions

Wow, it's been a long time! I've been busy quilting for other people, and quilting a few of my own. This quilt is from a workshop I took with Karen Combs called Patchwork Illusions. I was going to make more blocks with the risk of the whole project ending up in the UFO pile indefinitely. So instead I decided to just sew together the two blocks I made in class and go with it! The quilting was all improvisational, and it was fun! And it's d-o-n-e :)


June 3, 2012

My Ohio Quilt Shop Hop, Zanesville to Toledo

A few weeks ago I attended Statler Stitcher Days in Zanesville, OH, hosted by Doug and Martha Creasy at A Touch of Thread.

 
It was a three day seminar where I met lots of nice machine quilters. We all share the love of quilting on our Statler Stitcher computer guided longarm quilting machines. I learned a lot of new tips and tricks that will take my quilting to a new level, and it was well worth the trip!
 
When it was over I had a few days to meander my way up to Michigan to visit my parents. So I did some research and mapped a route from Zanesville to Toledo through farmlands and over back roads of eastern Ohio that would take me to several great quilt shops!

After leaving Zanesville, my first stop was Berlin, OH for an overnight. I stayed at the Berlin Grande Hotel, it was fairly new and very nice, except there was NO cell phone service in the area! Berlin is located in the midst of the largest Amish community in the US.

 
The following morning I was up early and on my way to Millersburg, OH to visit Miller's Dry Goods. I was in search of fabric, of course!


I was looking for a specific fabric that I had seen on their website, and they were very helpful in finding it for me! A very nice selection, and a wonderful experience!


I was soon on the road to my next destination, Country Fabrics in Shiloh, OH. It was challenging to find because at one point the Google maps directions, the 8 year old GPS, and the AAA paper map all showed different directions! I sat at an intersection with no one around and finally decided to trust the 8 year old GPS. There was nothing around other than farmland and an occasional barn. But lo and behold, there it was, a relatively new building with lots of cars parked out front. That must be the quilt shop!! 


I am much less overwhelmed if I have something specific in mind when I go fabric shopping (that doesn't mean I stick to my wish list LOL). So it didn't take me long to make my selections, and find some other fabric that I needed....


Soon I was on the way to my next destination, The Door Mouse in Bettsville, OH. I continued heading northwest, and by that time the roads were getting straighter and the farmland was getting flatter. I had to fool the GPS several times because I wanted to stay on the back roads even though some of them were labeled as highways!


Again in what seemed to be the middle of nowhere, there was a barn like building that was bursting with fabric!


I had been warned that it could feel overwhelming inside. Here is the green aisle...


And the red aisle....


I made my selections upstairs in the novelty section. And on my way out I stopped in the ladies room and found even mores stuff for sale in there!

One more stop at Checker Distributors in Maumee, OH. They sell wholesale quilting supplies to businesses, and since I have a longarm quilting business I have an account there. I was very curious to see the inside of the warehouse first hand! 


Once inside, there was a spotless showroom with samples of all the items they sell. All I can say is wow, I never knew there were so many cool quilting gadgets!


But the fabric warehouse was the coolest part... words can't even begin to describe the feeling of being surrounded by thousands of full bolts of fabric.... (If you are a quilter and you have read this far, you probably know that feeling!) So much fabric everywhere!


And more fabric, as far as you can see, arranged by manufacturer.


I made my selections, paid for them, and was finally on to the final leg of my adventure to Michigan. It was a day filled with fabric, definitely a good day for a fabricaholic :) It was a fun adventure and I look forward to doing it again!!

March 30, 2012

Happy Birthday Dad

My Dad will be 90 next week, so I thought he should have a beautiful quilt for his bed! When I was young, we would go sailing all afternoon on Lake Charlevoix, in the 16' Windmill that he built himself. I loved being out on the water, and he taught me a lot. My Dad has always been there for me, and he will always have a special place in my heart :)


Here it is, on my Statler Stitcher. I used Quilters Dream wool batting so the quilt will be light, warm in the winter and cool in the summer.



I quilted a nautical design that has sailboats, anchors, ships wheels, and waves.



The quilt pattern is called "Take 5", a random arrangement of 8 nautical fabrics from a line called "Gone Sailing". I cut it out using my Accuquilt Studio. I think he will like it :)

February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day!


Happy Valentine's Day! It's been almost a year since my last blog post, but I promise to do better this year! I have been making quilts to get ready to start selling. It's going to be an exciting year at Valentine Quiltworks!

February 27, 2011

New Website is Up and Running!


My new website is up and running! I am continuing to add to it and change some things, but the info is there. A few weeks ago my web host informed me that the software I had been using for the last 4.5 years was being discontinued. So I experimented with three new softwares and chose the one I thought would be the best for what I wanted to do. I spent the last week or so learning it, designing the new site, and getting it all done! And I did it all by myself :) Except for the last step of switching the old and the new, I called my web host and they were very helpful and did the final switch for me. So please check out my new redesigned website!

February 14, 2011

January 14, 2011

Published Again!



In March 2009 I was selected by RaNae Merrill to be one of the members of a special group called "Spiromandalas". Over the next 10 months we learned, designed, pieced, and finished a quilt for her second book, Magnificent Spiral Mandala Quilts. After that task was completed, the book was written, edited, and published in November 2010. It is a wonderful book :) I am very proud to have my quilt pictured in the design section on page 39, highlighting my unique approach to the task at hand. Here is my quilt!


I named it "Up, Up, and Away" because my focus fabric consisted of brightly colored hot air balloons.


I will now explain a little about the process. The quilt was designed using paper, pencil, ruler, and colored pencils. I used a program called Auto Sketch to help me draw my design. It follows the guidelines that were given to us by RaNae, and are spelled out in detail in her book.

After RaNae and I settled on the design I made a full size drawing on paper so I would know where the various colors of fabric belonged. I also used these drawings to create the foundations for each section of the paper piecing.

Then it was time to choose gradations of the various colors in the quilt. Fortunately I found most of them in my stash of bright colored fabrics :)




I cut strips of fabric corresponding to each piece of each section.

Then I cut them to the approximate length I would need, as paper piecing does not require exact sized pieces of fabric.

I arranged the pieces I needed for the six sections that consisted of blue, green, and yellow, so I would be sure to put them in the correct position.

The deadline was fast approaching, and apparently I was so busy sewing all those little pieces together that I forgot to take pictures! So here is the quilt laid out before the sections were sewn together.

Here is a close up of the quilt after the sections were assembled.

Time to quilt it! I used my Gammill Statler Stitcher.

I quilted radiating lines every five degrees to represent the ropes that hold down a hot air balloon.

The border is a feather design that represents the blowing wind that keeps the balloon afloat.

I quilted some circles in the center to represent the people riding in the balloon.

And once again, here it is, "Up, Up, and Away"!!

I invite you to read more about the Magnificent Mandala Quilts! Click on the link below and it will take you to RaNae Merrill's blog. The right column on the blog lists all of the members of the group and gives details about how each quilt in the book was designed and constructed. At the bottom of that column you will find the section that tells more about the process I used to create my quilt, click on Susan Wood. Enjoy!

Spiromandalas Blog

January 13, 2011

Record Snow!


Nearly two feet of snow in about 12 hours!

Looks like we won't be swimming for awhile...

Or grilling outside....

The snow blower broke, but fortunately we were able to fix it!

Looks like a project for tomorrow...

Plenty of shovels!

I think I will stay inside now and quilt!