Friday, May 22, 2009

Winding Ways

I wrote about a great quilt book called Winding Ways Quilts by Nancy Elliott MacDOnald. Check it out over at Craft Critique. I even made a short how-to video so you can hear my very northern-midwestern accent. It is also hard for me to talk and sew at the same time.

C&T Publishing is doing a giveaway over at Craft Critique, so leave a comment on one of the C&T vendor spotlight reviews before midnight tonight (Friday) to qualify.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Mothers Day Totes

Mothers Day Totes

These are the bags I sewed for my mom and mother-in-law for Mothers Day this year. I still want to make one for myself, but none of my local fabric stores have the right woven interfacing and don't want to risk puckering if I use the wrong kind..

Mothers Day Totes

This is an Amy Butler Birdie Sling Tote pattern. Mom and I saw someone carrying a version of this bag in Paducah and I decided to challenge myself by making one from the pattern. The first one took me pretty much all day to make, but the second one was much faster.

Mothers Day Totes

I used fabrics I rummaged out of the remnant bin at Hancocks of Paducah, plus one from my stash for the lining on the orchid colored bag. It is hard to tell, but these are large bags and carry a lot of stuff. This is a good thing for my mother-in-law who carries EVERYTHING in her stuffed purse and then wonders why she gets shoulder pain...

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Mothers Day

I'm remembering my sweet, gentle Grandma McKee today. In this photo, it is the mid 1930's and she is holding her first baby, my Uncle Curtis.

She always had a beautiful project in her hands. When they stayed with us in the summer and over the Christmas holiday, she would always be making beautiful thread crochet motifs that she would assemble into heirloom tablecloths for all her grand daughters and grand nieces.

Vintage Work by My Grandma

Here she is with my beautiful Aunt Nancy who sadly passed away this year.


She made cross stitched quilts like this one for all of her adult children. This one was Aunt Nancy's. I am grateful to the family who saw to it that I would receive it. She made a red version of this for my Mom and Dad. This blue one is dated 1965.

Vintage Work by My Grandma

I feel a strong connection to both of my grandmothers. Their personalities could not have been more different, but they had the same hobbies which I find that I share. My Grandma N favored sewing and quilting and crafted with her girlfriends for sales and church bazaars. Grandma McK was a content and kind spirit. She stitched in her younger years, but I only remember the thread crochet. Several family members have handmade wool braided rugs that she made with scraps. Her afghans were used and loved.

Gram passed away shortly after Mothers Day about 12 years ago after a long, devastating decline from Alzheimers Disease. Even in the worst stages of her illness, she was kind, loving and sweet, especially to my Grandfather.

Vintage Work by My Grandma
Happy Mothers Day to you all. I hope you take this day to remember sweet times with the matriarchs in your families.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Paducah 2009

I feel like I am falling behind on things! Last night we tried to schedule out the summer. It is not easy to find activities for a 12 year old boy who isn't much into a sports camp.

Paducah was absolutely fantastic! I uploaded a bunch of pictures of it to my Flickr account, but I still have to credit all the artists. It really does seem like the show has outgrown the venue in Paducah. The quilts are squeezed into a smallish expo space and it is hard to really experience them with all of the crowds as the aisles are small. In Chicago they have a very large convention center with plenty of open space so the quilts are displayed in gallery like areas instead of tight aisles. There are several exhibits all over town and in various separate areas of their expo spaces.Paducah Quilt Show 2009
A big thing to do at the Paducah event is the tent show with Eleanor Burns of Quilt in a Day. Now that I am home, I wish we'd seen it, but at the time we felt on overload. We visited her shop and it was shoulder to shoulder crowded with enthusiastic quilters. We chatted in line with a quilter on a tour from Australia. She'd been to Chicago the previous week with her tour and had another show out west coming up.

Mom and I were there for 4 days. We found delicious restaurants and the town is charming. It was very challenging to find a hotel room, but Mom located a local hotel that was .. um... a throwback to the motor lodge experiences of yesteryear. The room was non-smoking, but the air system is all connected so we still had smoke blowing on us in the night. This kicked up our allergies so we tried to stay away from the room as much as possible. Since we stayed at a super cheap room I had more money to spend on fabrics!

Paducah Quilt Show 2009

For the quilt show, Hancocks of Paducah fills up a whole back area of their warehouse with large tables stacked high with one yard cuts of their designer fabrics. Each cut is just $5. When I visited the shop last year with my family in the winter I collected Kaffe Fasset and other coordinating prints and made this quilt as a gift for my mom.
Quilt Top

Rifling through these piles was the most fun of anything we did. Busloads of travelers to the show stop at Hancocks to buy their yardage. I love fabric so much. This is a picture of the remnant room. Usually they only have two tables with remnants.
Sorry about my blurry photos. I didn't notice until I uploaded them..

Paducah Quilt Show 2009
I made a couple of Mothers Day things with the fabric I found here and I already regret not buying more!

Another must see is the National Quilt Museum. On display were 25 years of Best In Show quilts including large pieces and breathtaking miniatures. Unfortunately, the museum doesn't allow photographs.

My mom doesn't even quilt and she loved the show. She says she learned things about the artistry of quilting that she never realized before. I'm not sure we will be able to do this show again, but I am so happy to have experienced it! Paducah at any time of the year is worth a visit to see their riverfront town with shops and nice restaurants, the Quilt Museum, Eleanor Burns shop, and Hancocks of Paducah.