Imitating the grown-ups!

Happy Monday, everyone!  I wish you a sweet day!

I am a home machine quilter who had aspired and am still aspiring to quilt more than just in the ditch with straight lines.  In other words, I wanted to quilt like the “grown ups” (those who quilt with longarm machines).  With practice, I think my imitation effort is starting to pay off just a little:

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I had to redo my Sunbonnet Sue quilt for “Quilter’s World” because the original one just didn’t turn out the way I wanted it to.  I hadn’t minded the re-do at all.  I am so much happier with the result from the second attempt:

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A couple of  shots showing the quilting in the evening sun:

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One of these days, I would love to try long-arming, but for now, I have to say I am quite content with just using my home machine.

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This quilt is scheduled for the June 2010 issue of “Quilter’s World”.  Stay tuned for more pictures once it is officially published.

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Thanks for popping by.  I always enjoy your visit!  Do leave me a comment so that I can visit you back.

Cottage Garden in THE QUILTER (November 2009)

Hello Everyone, I hope all is well with you. I want to thank you for your kind words on my Apple Quilt.

Besides my Apple Quilt, I also have my other quilts sent back to me from the editor of “The Quilter”. I am showing you the “Cottage Garden” that is in the current issue (November 2009) of The Quilter:

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I remember really enjoying making this quilt because it was designed to be a rather quick project. I was under a gruesome deadline in that I had to finish the quilt in less than a week. Now that the deadline is behind me, and the quilt is published, I can think back on the time I was making it with much satisfaction!

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I remember vividly that I was having to stay up late many a night, and corresponding with Cathi by email helped me stayed up late at night. We became not only quilting buddies, but also stitching buddies. I can’t help but smile now because that was the time we just discovered the treasure trove of free stitching patterns on the internet. We would shoot each other emails with links to find those wonderful charts! Cathi is a hand quilter — her hand work is amazing. You have got to look at the blocks she pieces by hand! The back of her blocks are as pretty as the front of her blocks. Thanks, Cathi – for keeping me awake while I was working on Cottage Garden! :)

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As always, my quilting is rarely marked. With the number of deadlines I have, it’s just easier to quilt my magazine quilts free-hand:

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I also quilted on the applique pieces:

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Thank you for stopping by! You have encouraged me with your kind words. I dedicate this blog post to all of my bloggy friends!

Have a blessed day, and if you happen to spend the day in your garden, I wish you a cottage-y garden day!

p.s. You may visit Heartbeat Quilts for the quilt kit.

Spell Check for Quilters

I was super proud of my “Breakthrough” quilt because it marked the first time I was able to free-hand feather quilting in quilting the border of a quilt on a home machine!

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I even machine embroidered the label on the hanging sleeve instead of making a separate label that I would have to spend extra time whipping it down by hand.  I was very pleased with myself!

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Until…. a student in one of my classes asked me if I was going to quit quilting after my “Breakthrough” quilt.  I was quite puzzled, but you can see for yourself here what prompted the rather strange question:

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We had a good laugh about that.  What a difference a letter makes!!!  Quilt and Quit!  Needless to say, I wasn’t feeling so smug after that little episode .  I actually thought of 1 Corinthians 10:12 “Wherefore, he that thinketh himself to stand, let him take heed lest he fall.”

At the same time, I was also wondering if they should include a spell checker program in those embroidery modules…. Meanwhile, I hope you will not quit, but you will keep quilting!

Thanks again for visiting!  I hope you have a super nice day!

Pieceful Blue

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I know some of my “Blue Monday” friends haven’t seen my Pieceful Garden quilt, so I thought I would show the quilt for this week’s Blue Monday.  The quilt was featured in the November 2008 issue of “The Quilter” magazine.  I was told that it was a contender for the cover quilt.  You may click here to view more pictures of the quilt:

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I was able to make the following pillows with the fabric scraps:

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I wish you a pieceful week!  Happy Monday!!  Thanks for stopping by.  I will chat with you again tomorrow.

p.s.  I have at one time sold the quilt kit for the quilt top.  I am down to one kit should any of you be interested in purchasing the last kit.  You may do so in my Etsy shop.

Logged: 6 hours

Good day, everyone!  A quickie to show you the progress on my “Spanning Three Centuries” quilt.  So far, 6 hours have gone into the quilting:

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I wish you all a wonderful weekend!  See you next week!

Joining the QUILT FESTIVAL Fun

Amy of Park City Girl is hosting her first annual Quilt Festival, and thought I couldn’t miss out on the fun! “Select your favorite quilt, make sure you have a good picture of it and go post about it! It doesn’t matter what size, style, or era it is from – there’s no judging here :) In your post tell your quilt’s story.”

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It’s hard for me to have to pick a favorite quilt because all the projects I have worked on end up being special to me in their own way. The most meaningful quilt I have made, however, is my interpretation of Mrs. Susan Nokes McCord “Harrison’s Rose Urn” (circa 1860) for a wholecloth. This is Mrs. McCord’s quilt:

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This is my wholecloth interpretation:

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Both works are in honor of our 9th President, President William Henry Harrison, also the grandfather of President Benjamin Harrison:

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I added an “H” to the urn as a monogram, and a grouse silhouette to commemorate the President’s favorite past time, grouse-hunting. The President named his house “Grouseland” — that’s how serious about grouse hunting! :)

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You can see the background stippling compared to the size of a penny:

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The quilt top is a cotton/silk blend, quilted with silk thread over a wool batt. Finished size is about 13 inches square:

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It won first place in the 2008 Grouseland Festival of Quilts Old Tippecanoe Block Challenge. It is now part of a permanent collection displayed in the Grouseland Mansion. If you are a subscriber to “The Quilter” magazine, you might have also seen it in their March 2009 issue:

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Thank you for stopping by. If this is your first visit, I would like you to stay a bit longer and look at my other favorite quilts. Please leave a comment – that way I can visit you back! Have a lovely day!

Back to feather quilting

I am still waiting for fabrics to come in for my upcoming magazine quilts. That means, I have some time to work on my “Spanning Three Centuries” wholecloth quilt. One of these days, I will get it done…

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Truth be known, this is a practice quilt. I want to eventually re-do the entire quilt in some kind of silky fabric.

Alrightie, my friends, back to my sewing machine. I hope you have a wonderful weekend! See you next week!

Bernina’s THROUGH THE NEEDLE (Issue 28)

I received my complimentary copies of “Through the Needle” over the weekend. Bernina didn’t just send me one or two copies – I received SIX copies (I smell a giveaway once things settle down for me)!!! And kudos to the editorial staff for a job well done. The magazine turned out to be very eye-catching!

I had seen the draft sent to me for final review, but it is NOTHING like seeing the real thing:

Here are more pillow shots:

Back of pillow – the fabric was one of those that I just couldn’t pass up at the quilt shop:

Click here if you happened to miss the previous post.

[Through the Needle will feature another article on me sometime next year. Stay tuned! I think it’s going to be really fun working on that project. This project will be done with the help of Rogers Sewing Center. You may contact Rogers Sewing Center for more information. You may also contact me should you be interested in a custom-made pillow like the one shown.]

Making something we can ACTUALLY use…?!

Remember this?


I received my pillow back from Bernina that is going to appear in their “Through the Needle” issue coming out in November. I was told this issue debuted in the Houston Quilt Market over the weekend. I will post more pictures when I receive my complimentary copies of the magazine:

It is another project with the whole-cloth theme except the main motifs were done by machine embroidery. I had also monogrammed an S for our family last name to give it a more personal and custom look. The background quilting was free-motion quilted with the Bernina Stitch Regulator.

What am I going to do with the pillow? It will be used as a decorative pillow to be looked at admiringly, and occasionally to be handled with clean hands. :) My husband aptly asked me upon completion of the project a while back, “When are you going to make something we can actually use?”. You know what, he had a point…

Thank you for stopping by. I hope you have a lovely Tuesday! As always, I love reading your comments. So, if you are able, do let me know when you’ve been by so that I can visit you back!

Trying something new…

I have been trying out a new background quilting stitch on one of the quilts I am finishing up for “The Quilter” — it is in a much larger scale than what I am normally used to. I think it’s worked out so far except I am not quite sure what to call it — slippery eels, flaming tongues…?

I got a call this morning from “Quiltmaker” that the sweetheart swag feather motif that I had designed for my quilt which appeared in Quiltmaker’s “Quilting & Embroidery” (Summer 2009) Ivory Spring will be included in the Quiltmaker’s Quilting Motif Vol. 7 coming out in November this year. Woo hoo!!!

Thanks for stopping by. I hope you have a splendid day! Till next time! :)

Dish-aholic Part 5: Sucker for Blue Transferware

Hello Everyone – I hope you have had a splendid week.  Over at my end, I am up to my eyeballs in deadlines!  I was going to do a post on more fall tableware, but I just ran out of time.  Instead, I am going to show you just what a sucker I am for Blue Transferware — especially those made by Spode.

This is my “festive” transferware platter – the pattern is officially called “Festival”.  I used to only put it out for the holidays, but I like it so much that I have leave it out all year round.  I just love that majestic look of that turkey, don’t you? :)

This is a Seder or Passover platter that bears the background pattern of antique Jewish filigree.  I am not Jewish, but I have always loved the story of deliverance in the book of Exodus – the things foreshadowed in the event are simply amazing!

This is a smaller platter that shows the “Girl At Well” pattern.  I have always loved this pattern even though this is the only piece I have.   The wholesome beauty of the girl drawing water from the well reminds me of the beauty of serving others:

Soon, it will be the season for this:

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Meanwhile, these came in the mail today – my blue ribbon from the Grouseland Old Tippecanoe Block Challenge, a certificate, and a hand-written note from the organizers.  While designing the quilt block, I learned that there are more quilts named after President William Harrison than any other Presidents even though he was only in office for 32 days:

Thank you for coming to my show-and-tell.  I wish you an enjoyable weekend!

I WON!!!!

I received the following comment on my Harrison Urn Quilt Block from Jane in Indiana on Friday —

“I had just come home from the Grouseland Quilt Show because I had won a place in the challenge. And wouldn’t you know, it was your block who beat me!! Congratulations on your first place winning in piecework!! I had placed second in piecework, also!! I was, also, blown away at you work. Beautiful!!! I had consequently found your blog a few days ago and saw your block there. I had to go today to see who beat me, and when I saw that it was yours, I wasn’t really that surprised. Your work is wonderful!”

I was excited and surprised and feeling a bit unsure about the news at the time, because I hadn’t heard anything official from the organizers…

Jane assured me that I had indeed won in emails we exchanged later, but still no official word from the organizers…

Then, this afternoon after we returned from church, a message on the answering machine confirmed my FIRST PLACE win in the Pieced Category at the Grouseland Festival of Quilts Old Tippecanoe Block Challenge held in Vincennes, Indiana on October 10th and 11th, 2009. Later in a phone conversation with Judy Morton representing the organizers, I was told that my quilt block will be displayed in Grouseland, with the possibility of being part of a traveling exhibit as well. I was also told that the winning entries will be featured in “The Quilter” magazine. What an honor this is in my short quilting journey!

Right when I was about to publish this post, I received an email from Jane. She went back the following day and took pictures of my block with the blue ribbon (bottom left corner). Jane had won second place in the “Pieced” Category, and first place in the “Applique” Category (top left corner, and bottom middle are Jane’s blocks – stunning!). Thanks bunches, Jane!

As I let the news soak in, I am thankful for many that have encouraged me beyond measure in my quilting journey:

1. My Lord and King – without Him, I am nothing. Indeed, “I said to the LORD, “You are my Lord; apart from you I have no good thing.” (Psalm 16:2)

2. My husband – he was the person who had first planted the bug of “you ought to try sewing” in my ear ever since we were newly married eons ago (well, not that looong!). I was an engineering student at the time and later proceeded to work in the field of Chemical Engineering for about seven years, and had NEVER had any interest to sew in my whole life. Nonetheless, he is always supportive in all my learning opportunities. He certainly was and still is in all my heirloomy pursuits — always with constructive ideas!

3. Barbara – my quilting teacher, mentor, close friend who is also a fellow Jane Austen fan. If it weren’t for her teaching me in my first quilt (which is an applique and pieced quilt, can you believe the naiveté for someone who has never sewn?), I wouldn’t have learned the love of quilting. I tell her that every quilt that gets any recognition is a tribute to her.

4. Annelle – my heirloom sewing teacher who is never discouraging in any way. Sharing our love for heirloom together has been an incredible journey.

5. Dan and Rhonda of Rogers Sewing Center – they have been invaluable to me as friends. They have helped and encouraged me tremendously ever since the day I purchase my machine from them. Through the Sewing Center, I have also made many sweet friends with whom I have forged great friendships. There’s just something when I can talk sewing with another person.

6. My sister – very very different from me, but she is never too busy to stop and oooh-and-aaah about anything I make!

7. I am certainly thankful to the bloggy friends I have made through this blog. Thank you for your ever encouraging words about my work. Your comments often brighten my day while I take my breaks from working at my sewing machine. I always make a point to respond to every comment either by email or visiting you on your blog if you have one.