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!

January 9, 2011

Happy Quilting 2011!

I'm a little late, but I wanted to wish everyone a Happy New Year, and share what I did on New Year's Day! I went fabric shopping at the annual sale at Keepsake Quilting in Center Harbor, New Hampshire! Do you think they have enough fabric?




Fabric in every color of the rainbow, and plenty for everyone! I hope this feast of colorful fabric inspires and motivates all of you! Happy New Year, and Happy Quilting 2011!

January 5, 2011

My Favorite...

Ice Cream! If you ever have a chance to visit the UConn Dairy Bar in Storrs, CT, it is well worth the trip! It is the best ice cream in the world :)) My favorite person brought these two half gallons home for Christmas. Wow! The flavors are all delicious, but my favorite is Jonathan Supreme. It is a vanilla base with peanut butter swirls and chocolate covered peanuts. Did I mention it has no calories? ;)

It has been pointed out to me by several followers that I have not been very good about keeping my blog up to date. Hmmm, people actually read this? I promise I'll get back on track!