Friday, June 3, 2011

A Long Time Away

Well, I was able to stay weekly for a while. Better than I expected actually. LOL! But here I am. I'll type in as much I can before I have to go. Today is my "stepson's" 23rd birthday, and we've got early dinner plans. Anyway, there's been a bit of creativity going on since March; not as much as I'd like, but some. Let's see, where to start.........

Glendale Quilt Show

I did make it to the Glendale Quilt Show on Sunday. Yes, in the pouring rain! One of the women in AVQA emailed a bunch of us the prior week, asking if anyone would like to join her. She had promised to take our Opportunity Quilt to the Show, and wanted some company. I immediately volunteered! I really hadn't planned on going. My car doesn't run very well, and I don't like to drive it more than I absolutely need to; plus, I really didn't want to spend any money. But, since transportation was provided, and entrance into the show was covered (we got in free since we were there with our Opportunity Quilt), I was all set.

I did buy a bit of stuff. I've been wanting to try some different types of batting. I've only ever used the Hobbs cotton batting and I've been wanting to try out a few other types. I bought a crib size wool (Hobbs Tuscany) and a crib-size bamboo (Fairfield's Nature-Fil) batting. The bamboo batt is actually 50% bamboo, 50% organic cotton. I also purchased five pieces of bamboo felt. It is so soft! I'm not sure what I'll do with them, but once I touched it, I had to have it! I had told myself not to buy any fabric or patterns, as I have more than enough already. Unfortunately, I did see one that I had to buy. I can't recall the name of it, and, of course, my studio's a mess and I can't find it! LOL! It's a miniature of kitties, 15" x 18", and just too cute! I'll give you the name of it is soon as I find it!

Sharon Schamber's Workshop Piece

I finished the appliqué on the Sharon Schamber's piece. I now have to wash it to get the glue out. I've also found the fabrics for the bag I'm going to make.

It will be a messenger bag with the appliqué as the flap. The green underneath, which is the same fabric as the leaves and stems, will be the back of the flap. The flap will be quilted and bound. The black and white flowered canvas is the outside of the bag, and the black with colored flowers will be the lining. I've got the bag designed, and now need to create the patterns, cut the fabric, quilt and bind the flap, and assemble the bag.

Terry Waldron's Workshop Piece

This one is almost done! I just need to add the sides.

The fabric you're seeing under the lavendar straps, is actually the lining inside. I finished the bird, quilted the back, bottom and side pieces, added straps, and put 5 pockets on one side of the inside. All the edges are bound with the lining fabric, except the sides. I ran out of fabric and, of course, now can't find it. I found another fabric, which works fairly well, but I'm not sure. I may look a bit more to see if I can find something closer. The new fabric is a batik, but it's mostly black, and doesn't have as much color as the original. Maybe I'll look a bit more this weekend.


I've been working on my Filigree quilt. I quilt on the bus ride home from work almost every day. It's almost done!

I decided on the solid pink for the overall quilting. I really like the butterscotch, but my stitching isn't uniform enough yet that I feel comfortable using it for the entire quilt. However, I did use it to do the initial stitching up against the appliqué itself. I also decided against doing an echo quilting motif. Because of the "curviness" of the appliqué, I would have needed to mark the quilting lines, and, frankly, I really didn't want to! LOL! I wanted to start quilting this, so I decided to use the pattern of the background fabric, and quilt scallops following the ovals in the fabric. I used the wool batting. I had been told by a couple of hand quilters that it's really the nicest of the batts to hand quilt through; and they were right! I'm hoping to have the quilting done in the next couple of weeks, so I can add the binding. As much as I love this quilt, I'm ready to work on a few other projects, but I'm determined not to let this end up in my ever-growing UFO pile! I will finish it!


The next piece in this series is the palm tree. I've got the pattern drawn, and the fabrics pulled.

It's only about 18" x 24", so it's not too big. I wasn't sure initially what style I was going to do on this piece, but I've decided it will be a raw-edge appliqué. I'm going to use a technique that Terry Waldron showed us for cutting tree trunks. The palm fronds will be sewn down like the feathers in the Bird Tote, again just raw edges. I may even unravel a few threads and leave them hanging. Palm trees have string-like fibers hanging from them, so I might as well add those. I'm also going to use some cording for the spine of the frond. I can't wait to start on this one.

I&M Quilters

I finally finished the Scrambled 9-patch I put together last year! I don't have a picture yet, but will get one relatively soon. I have two other quilts for this group pinned and ready to quilt. I'll try to get pictures of them next week.

We're doing Sindy Rodenmayer's fish blocks (see for our raffle quilt this year. We did her chickens last year, and it was really well received. A couple of us, actually three of us, are also doing embroidered blocks based on Japanese designs. I need get mine started. I've got my patterns printed and we're all using the same background. I now need to pull my fabric for the sea dragon and get it done. I've got the embroidery floss pulled for the "coral" pattern I'm using for the embroidery. We've got until August to get these done, then the head of our group will put the top together and quilt it.

I've got a bit more to discuss, but will leave that for next time. Until then, take care.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Sharon Schamber Workshop

If you ever get a chance to take a class with Sharon, do it. She is the best. She is up-beat and enthusiastic. She explains everything clearly and says things a few different ways so everyone understands what she's doing and why before moving on. She encourages questions, and will work with you individually to be sure you know what to do. She gives a lot of good information about what she uses, and why she does things the way she does. Here's what I did in class:

Sharon's technique for machine appliqué is easy, fast, and fun. The original pattern was a complete circle, but, unfortunately, I didn't measure the piece I brought for my background and it wasn't large enough. Which is actually okay, as I've decided to use this as the flap of a messenger bag. Most of the pieces are now sewn down, using polyester monofilament thread. I'll put another flower at the end of each stem. In the next couple of weeks, I'll quilt this and bind three edges, then create the pattern and pull fabrics for the bag itself. I think I'll do the bag in a dark pink, with a green lining and charcoal straps. It will be rather large, and have lots of pockets! Cool.

I've finished the appliqué on my VS1-Filigree, and it's now ready to be basted and quilted!

It will be hand quilted, and I haven't decided whether I want to use a pink variegated, butterscotch variegated, or solid pink or butterscotch thread for the quilting. I have all those colors, and am working on a sampler to decide which works better. I haven't really decided what type of batting to use either. I usually use cotton, but I'm thinking about trying a wool, or perhaps a bamboo.

That's about all I have to show you. Since classes ended last week, I'm just exhausted. I didn't do much of anything creative last weekend other than Sharon's workshop. I only have two more weekends before classes start up again, and there are several things I want to get done. I'll see what I can have to show you next week.

Until then, take care.


Friday, March 11, 2011

Sharon Schamber at AVQA

My husband often tells me that if I want to reach for the stars, not to shoot for the moon because I may only hit the lamppost. Instead, aim for the center of the universe, because then I just may hit Pluto. Well, last night I saw the center of the universe, and it contains the work of Sharon Schamber. She did a trunk show at the AVQA guild meeting last night. I found myself near tears as each quilt was unrolled and presented, as each was more magnificent than the previous. Over the years, I'd seen Sharon's work in photographs, and even a couple of pieces at Road to California. I'd always known her work was indescribably amazing, but to be able to stand nose-to-nose with Mystique was, well, indescribable.

She started by passing around small studies of hand and machine quilting, appliqué and beading. A set of blocks of hand appliqué followed. Each of these studies and blocks were passed from person to person, as we marveled at the tiny hand quilting stitches, the intricate machine quilting, the perfectly stitched machine and hand appliqué. I was sitting next to Darla Hall, who is a long-arm quilter, and she pointed out things about the quilting I didn't know. She studies Sharon's work, has her DVDs, and strives to hit that center of the universe where Sharon's work resides. She and I were not the only ones I heard saying that we wanted to be Sharon when we grew up! LOL!

The last two quilts shown were Mystique and a new one (which I can't remember the name to), which has yet to be finished. It looked as if the only thing left to do was the binding. Those two quilts were laid open on two tables on the stage for us to come up and get a closer look at. And close we did get. Mystique is quilted in black thread on a white background. The stitches are perfect! The intricacy and variety is astounding. There are several thousand yards of spaghetti-strap tubing sewn between the pieces and around the edge.

I bought her book, "Piece by Piece, Machine Appliqué." I'm taking her class tomorrow, so she said she'd sign it then. We're doing her "Love Me Knot" appliqué class. I'm excited, and can't wait to start. I'll fill you in on the class next week.

I had a couple projects due for school this past week, so I didn't do anything substantively creative. However, I have been working on my VS1-Filigree on the bus ride home from work each night. It's coming along really well. I should have the appliqué sewn down by the end of the weekend. I'd like to get it sandwiched and basted Sunday, so it's ready to start quilting. I need to decide on quilting thread. I think I'd like to use a variegated light to dark pink, or perhaps a butterscotch to match the binding.

Not much else is happening right now, and I don't have any new photos to share. I've got a couple weeks off from classes, so I'm hoping to get a lot of creative work done. I should have more to show you next week.

Until then, take care.


Saturday, March 5, 2011


Missed last week's post; I was sick and didn't get on the computer until Tuesday. Didn't really do much during the past weekend, though I did work on my Filigree quilt a bit, and spent some time organizing my embroidery floss. I've started nothing new. Everything is still in progress.

I'm continuing to work on August's Paisley for the 2010 BJP.

My VS1-Filigree is basted and cut, and I've started sewing the main appliqué. I really love how this is turning out!

As you can see, I've sewn down two of the last four accent pieces. I wanted to see how they looked.

I did buy fabric for the second quilt in the Visioning Project series I'm doing, but I haven't done anything more with it yet. Once I get it started, I'll show you a pic.

I'm also continuing work on my bird tote from Terry Waldron's class. I've got my lining fabric, and the fabric for the rest of the tote, as well as the webbing for straps. I've sewn down the body feathers, and now need to cut some smaller neck feathers. They'll be the same yellow as the pieces just over the tail feathers. Of course, he still needs a face and beak, and I'm going to add a top-knot. I want to do a little more quilting in the background, and on his legs, then the tote will be ready to put together. This will be fun. I'm hoping to get this done this weekend, so I can take it to my quilt guild next week.

The I&M Quilters group I belong to is moving along with projects. I have three quilts pinned and ready for quilting, one of which is the Line Art I mentioned in a previous post. Of the other two, one is a Scrambled 9-Patch that we did last year and I never got around to finishing. The other is something I put together from pieces I found in the Quilt Room. There were a bunch of 8" squares, and I put them together and added some borders. I don't have photos of these yet, but will show them to you as I get them finished. All three of these quilts will go in the queue for delivery to either City of Hope or Children's Hospital.

I've joined the L.A. Modern Quilt Guild. I do like the modern quilt look, though I don't think I'll do many of them. What I've seen so far is . . . I don't know how to describe it. They're very clean and very cool, but, like traditional patterns, I can appreciate them, but don't really want to spend time making them. I like a lot of stuff! I do so many different hand and needlecrafts that I want to incorporate them into my art pieces. Modern quilts, like traditional quilts, don't have a lot of stuff on them. Does that make any sense? LOL! As I said, it's hard to describe my feelings. I want my quilts to be beaded, and embroidered, and have a lot of different techniques in them.

Now, the modern fabrics are a whole different issue. I love them! I never really paid attention to fabric designers before, but I do now. Some of my new favorite designers are Carolyn Gavin, Chelsea Andersen and Riley Blake. There are new quilt shops that carry these new modern print fabrics. Sew Modern, which I've mentioned before, is one. Online shops include Fabric Worm and Spoonflower. Yes, you can buy fabric at Spoonflower. It's more expensive, but it's also more individualistic. My Filigree quilt is made with modern prints from Pat Bravo and Art Gallery Fabrics, which I bought at Sew Modern a few weeks ago.

That's it for now. I'm continuing to work on things, and will, hopefully, have something finished next week to show you.

Until next time, take care.


Saturday, February 19, 2011

July 2010 BJP, AVQA Meeting, Terry Waldron, More Fabric

I missed last week's post, so I may not go through the whole two weeks! We'll see. I've been doing a lot of work; I'm really excited! Okay, so what did I miss? Oh, yeah.....

July's paisley is done!

I've now started August, which is red.

I need to start getting the beads for the last four pieces. I need blue-green for September, red-orange for October, blue-violet for November and violet for December. I think I may have some of these colors, but I'm sure I don't have enough, except, perhaps, for December's violet. I love purple, so I should have plenty of purple beads, but I need to double-check. I guess I'll have to make a run to the bead stores in downtown L.A. in the next month or so. Cool!

I finished the appliqué block for AVQA's 2012 Opportunity Quilt. Unfortunately, I didn't get a photo before I turned it in. I'll be sure to post a photo of the finished quilt once I get it. I love appliqué! I'm not sure what the entire quilt is going to look like, but I loved this block. It'll be fun to see it all together. I use Geri Richardson's basted needle-turn technique. It's the easiest technique I've found for needle-turn appliqué. She has some wonderful patterns as well. One of my first entries into a quilt show was her Peony pattern.

I started this small quilt at a workshop she gave at our guild a couple years ago. It's 16 3/4" x 18 3/4" and hand quilted. I showed it to my Mom while I was working on it, and she exclaimed that it was her favorite colors! So, it became a Mother's Day gift, and now hangs in her living room. If you see Geri at a quilt show, stop and say hello. Her patterns are wonderful, the fabrics she carries are fabulous, and her husband is so fun to talk to! Geri is friendly, and usually has a piece there to demonstrate her technique.

I also finished the block from the scraps Kay Hague had given us at last month's AVQA meeting. Again, I didn't get a photo before I gave it to Kay. Fortunately, the large majority of the scraps in the baggie I got were rectangles and strips. It came together really easily. I really like this. I may have to do more; I've got plenty of scraps! This would make some really fun tote bags. A lot of people actually finished their blocks and brought them in to the meeting last night. Someone had brought in a small design wall, and it was great to see all the blocks together. Kay's going to take them all and put them together in one large quilt. I'll get a photo once she finishes it.

Our speaker for last week's guild meeting was Terry Waldron. Her lecture was titled "The Art of Doing It All." She's has a somewhat quiet delivery, but her stories are fun. Her attitude about quilting is basically "It's my quilt, I'll do it the way I want." I love that! She uses fabrics from furniture stores, and string from hardware stores as embellishments. Her quilts are fun pieces of art. I'm so excited. I almost feel validated in the kind of quilts I want to make. I don't want to follow any rules but my own. There, I've said it. And, you know what, that's just what I'm going to do! This is my art, and I will do it my way!

Terry's workshop was last Saturday. It was so fun. We did her "Birds of a Feather." It's actually pretty close to an idea I had for one of my Visioning Project pieces. Anyway, here's what I accomplished in class:

Actually, the blue feathers are just cut out, they haven't been sewn down yet. She didn't have a pattern. We all just drew our own birds and went for it. She came around as we were working and made suggestions. She suggested I put longer legs on mine; it really looks much better than what I had! I can't wait to finish this. Of course, I'll be turning it into a tote. I know exactly what fabric to use for the back and sides, and am looking for fabric for the lining, probably something with some cute birds on it, or bird tracks. I don't have any of that fabric yet, so I can't show you anything of it right now, but I'll post a photo as soon as it's done. I plan on having it completed by the next guild meeting, which is March 10.

Terry's best advice was to relax. Who's to know if you make a mistake. Just add some fabric on top, and go on your way! How fun is that?! She is really sweet and we had a great time.

A couple friends and I went back to Sew Modern last week. One of the girls didn't make it on our road trip the previous week, so we went last Thursday. Lauren has every color of Kona Cotton Solids, and they make such a beautiful display! I've had a quilt in mind for a couple of years, but wasn't sure if I was going to be able to do it properly. It's basically a color wheel in a quilt, and I wanted at least ten gradations of each color. I now can get them easily! I'm just so excited! I'll collect each color set a bit at a time.

While there, I purchased more fabric for the Visioning Project appliqué quilt. It turned out larger than I expected, and one yard was not enough for both the front and back of the quilt. I decided to use the pink on pink print as the backing. I was initially going to use the pink background for both front and back, but I think I like the print better. It gives it a different feel. Also, the pink dotted background is a heavier fabric, and I didn't want the quilt itself to be too heavy.

I've been working on this piece (titled VS1 - Filigree) for the past couple of weeks. I drew out the full pattern, and transferred it to the back of the background fabric. I then basted the accent pieces on, as you can see here:

It's about 27" square so it's not too large. There are these small accent pieces, then the main appliqué is one large piece, which I'm in the process now of basting down. There are four more accent pieces that will go on top of the main piece.

I'm really excited about this entire Series. The four ideas I have so far for the first photo are really different from each other. Each one stretches my creative boundaries just a little more. I can work on the Filigree piece on the commuter bus home from work each night, so hopefully, it'll go pretty quickly. I'm going to hand quilt this one. The Palm Tree, which will be the second quilt from this photo, will be the one that uses Terry Waldron's technique. That one will be machine pieced/appliquéd and, probably, machine quilted. I'm not trying to think too far ahead, so the other two quilts are just ideas right now. Once I get the Filigree piece done, I'll start planning out the painted window. Once the Palm Tree is done, and I'm working on the window, I'll start planning the landscape quilt of the entire photo. I've pulled out one of the many empty sketchbooks I have, and I'll be using that for my journal.

Okay, I'm going to stop here. There's a bit more happening, but I'll leave it for next week. I can't believe there was so much to write about these past two weeks! How very cool!

Until next time, take care.


Saturday, February 5, 2011

Mini Retreat, the Visioning Project, and a New Quilt Shop

Last Saturday, January 29, AVQA had a mini-retreat for the members. It cost us $5, and we had the use of a wonderfully large and bright space upstairs at the Sierra Toyota in Lancaster. The room was longer than it was wide, and had windows down one long side and two long counters down the other side. We could bring anything we wanted to work on, and there were tables for sewing machines, two ironing boards were set up, and the cutting mats sat on one of the counters along the wall. I took a couple of projects with me. I had the Series 1 photo for the SAQA Visioning Project, as well as the Exhibition piece I'm doing.

SAQA stands for Studio Art Quilt Associates. I have been a member for a couple years now. Some of the most amazing quilters are members. Many of them are authors and teachers. The Home page of SAQA's website includes a slideshow of some of the members' work. They are inspiring. The Visioning Project is open to members, and is sort of a mentoring program. At the beginning of the year (which, for the Visioning Project, starts in October), you state your goal for that year. My goal this year is to "find my voice" as an artist, and in the process, complete a small body of work. Others have goals such as to write a book, find gallery/agent representation, or create a portfolio. As you work, you post what you've been doing, let everyone else know you've updated your page, and then you get comments and feedback. It's very inspiring, and extremely helpful. Since many of the artists within the Project are working professionals, you're able to get some wonderful information and help along the way because many of them have been where you are now. You're also able to connect with people who are at the same place, and share stories, ideas, and discoveries. They also have a monthly conference call, which, unfortunately, due to my schedule, I haven't had a chance to be part of yet, but the comments and information from those are also wonderful.

So, back to the mini-retreat........ As I mentioned, my goal for the Visioning Project is to find my voice. I've chosen three photographs from which I'll make at least three quilts from each. The first photo is one my husband took of a beautiful window at the Santa Barbara Courthouse, with a palm tree against the building.

I love the window in this photo, as well as the angles and textures in the building and the tree. I had traced out my master pattern and drawn a few thumbnails of ideas about a month ago. At the retreat, I further refined those ideas. I created an appliqué pattern for one of the quilts; started drafting pattern pieces for another; and drew full-size ideas for two more quilts.

On Wednesday, I went with the I&M Quilters to a new quilt shop that's just opened up not far from our offices. It's called Sew Modern and is located on Pico Blvd., just west of Westwood Blvd. I went to check out the new store and meet the owner, but also with the intention of finding just the right fabrics for the appliqué piece I've drafted. Because this appliqué only uses three or four fabrics, I wanted to find something with really great prints. Found them I did! Here are the fabrics with a piece of the pattern itself.

The pink fabric on the bottom will be the background. The bright pink and gold print will be the appliqué. The pink tone-on-tone will be accent pieces, and the butterscotch will be the binding. The appliqué continues on the other side (under the fabrics), but I think I may also flip it to mirror underneath. In other words, what you're seeing may actually be one-quarter of the pattern, rather than half. I'm still trying to decide. This next week, I'll draw it out both ways, and see which I like better.

I also worked on the Exhibition piece I want to enter. I can't show you anything, but I'm really happy with it. I had basted my fabrics together over a month ago, but was afraid to cut into it. I've found that I have some great ideas for exhibitions, but I never get anything entered because when it came down to actually creating the piece, I would start doubting myself and would simply not do anything. I was so afraid of failing, that I wouldn't start. That's now changing. This piece may not make it into the Exhibition, but it absolutely never will if I don't enter. So, I'm working on it. And I'll enter it in the Exhibition. If it gets selected, that would be great, if not, maybe the next one! Anyway, I cut into the fabrics, basted, and am doing a reverse appliqué. It's turning out really cool! I do love it. If it doesn't get accepted into the Exhibition, I'll post a photo of it. Of course, I won't know until June, so don't expect it soon!

By the way, the new quilt store, Sew Modern, was wonderful. Lauren is the owner, and just the sweetest. She is open to suggestions for stocking fabrics or things she doesn't currently carry. The store itself is open, bright, and airy. She doesn't have a lot of fabrics, but what she has is the best I've seen. The prints and colors are fabulous! I wanted a little of each! She has a long-arm quilt machine in the back of the store, and after a couple of classes, or showing that you have experience, you can rent time to use it. So, if you're on the Westside of Los Angeles, stop in. It's worth the visit.

That's it for this week. Until next time, take care.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Philanthropic Quilts

I didn't get much done this week. Had some personal issues at home over the weekend, along with school work. But I did work on a philanthropic quilt during the week, as well as an applique block for AVQA.

I belong to another group of quilters, the I&M Quilters. I&M stands for Irell & Manella, which is a law firm I used to work at. My current job is in the building next door, and I still have a lot of friends there, a couple of which are part of the quilt group. We are a philanthropic group, making quilts mainly for donations to patients at City of Hope and the Los Angeles Children's Hospital. Throughout the year, several of us also work on quilts for family and friends. The firm provides us with an office that we've turned into a sewing room, with our fabric stash along one wall, ironing board and cutting table under the windows, a comfortable couch against another wall, and four sewing machines set up on tables in the center of the room.

Some of the people in the group are new quilters, so we also do some classes and easy quilt patterns. These have two benefits. First, the easy patterns help teach the new quilters all the ins and outs of quilting, starting from choosing fabric, all the way through to quilting, binding and labeling. The second benefit is that these simple quilts then become our donations. Because the patterns are simple, we're able to complete and donate more quilts. Last year, we donated 32 quilts to City of Hope. The quilts are given to cancer patients. We try to do a variety of colors and fabrics, so that we have quilts for all ages, and that would please both male and female recipients.

The title of the first quilt we're doing this year is "Line Art," and the designer is Holly Hickman. Perla, our "leader" in the group, got the pattern from the Winter 2010 edition of Quilts and More magazine (from Better Homes & Garden). Here's my top:

I love patterns like this. They're simple, yet can be so fun and interesting. Each one the group is making is very different. The back will be the light pink, and I've got some strips left over, which I'll sew together to make up the binding.

When a group of quilts are done, we have a pinning party. Perla reserves a conference room, and we can pin a lot of quilts in an hour.

I also started working on an applique block for AVQA's 2012 Opportunity Quilt. I haven't seen the entire design yet, but there's the applique block and a paper-pieced block. Once I've got more than just the one piece of vine done, I'll show you what it looks like. I love doing applique, and really want to do more. I have a few ideas of quilts I want to do, well, okay, more than a few! LOL!

That's it for this week. Not a whole lot, but I did get something done!

Until next week, take care.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Looking Forward

One of my goals this year is to update my blogs and social networks regularly. I haven't done so well yet! My plan includes updating this blog weekly, whether I have anything to show or not. So, although the third week of the year is now behind me, here's the first of my weekly updates for 2011.

I've actually gotten a few things completed in the past couple of weeks. I've finished my February and June pieces for the 2010 Bead Journal Project (BJP), have started July, and pulled the beads for August; fixed a couple of tote bags whose straps were tearing; added a ribbon casing and drawstrings to a bag a friend made for me for Xmas; inserted a lining into a new tote bag purchased from my favorite local quilt shop; finished a vinyl tote I started a year ago for rainy commutes; cut all the fabric and interfacings for a new purse design; and started work on a quilt for an exhibition I want to enter in April. Whew, I've been busier than I thought! LOL!

First, here are the completed February and June BJP pieces. I can't decide which I like more, March (the orange one in my last post) or June..........

Here's the beginning of July's piece, as well as the beads I've pulled for August.

These are the two totes whose straps I fixed. I'm not happy with the end result, so I may need to do something a bit more with these. At a minimum, I may need to put a fabric piece at the ends of each of the straps............

This is the bag my friend Kellie made for me, with the new ribbon casing and drawstrings. Unfortunately, I didn't take a "before" photo. The bag held embroidery supplies, which I can always use, and always appreciate! Thank you, Kellie!

Here's the quilt shop tote I added the lining to. Again, I didn't take a "before" photo, but it was basically just a canvas tote with the blue straps and this really cute logo on the front. The name of the shop is Bolts in the Bathtub, and the story is that the owner used to keep her fabric stash at home in the tub in the extra bathroom. When you walk into the store, they have an old claw-footed bathtub filled with bolts of fabric! It's really cute. Anyway, I'm thinking of pulling the lining back out of this tote so I can add some pockets.

One of my many UFOs is finished! (Only 117 to go.) Here's the vinyl tote I started last year for rainy-day commutes. My commute to work is about 1-1/2 to 3 hours, one way, depending on traffic. I take a very comfortable commuter bus, and I'd been wanting to do a vinyl tote to keep my craft projects dry (of which I always have at least two or three with me). I started it last year, but didn't finish it because we had very little rain; it didn't seem too important at the time. This year, however, we've gotten quite a bit so far, and winter's not over yet. Though there's no rain in the immediate forecast, I can't believe that we're done for the season I'll need to use this again soon, I'm sure!

The last two projects I mentioned above are not showable at this time. The purse is a design I'm working on for a possible business startup; it will be on another site at some point. The exhibition quilt can't be shown before the exhibition; there's really nothing to show anyway, just some fabric basted together.

In other news, last Thursday was the Antelope Valley Quilt Association meeting. Our speaker was one of our members, Kay Hague. She showed us some of her early quilts, and some of what she's doing now. Her new quilts are too cool, and sound like way too much fun. She was going to do a workshop as well on Saturday, but the classroom that had been booked was cancelled due to the Martin Luther King Holiday. She's going to reschedule for later in the year. At the end of her talk, however, she passed out baggies of scraps. She calls her piecing technique "Baggie Solutions." It looks like so much fun, and I can't wait to put together the scraps I got. I have a bag of scraps at home that I may just have to do this with as well. Hopefully, I can work on these this weekend. I'll show you what I've done next time.

That's it for this week, or rather, these past three weeks!

Until next week, take care.