Monday, February 23, 2009

New week

It was a good weekend. Met with Jeanne on Sunday and spent time putting the Sophie wall-hanging together. It's always amazing how just changing one 2 1/2" X 2 1/2" square from polka dots to stars can make a significant difference in how a block looks. I'm really pleased with the pattern so far. The red and white version looks charming-I can't wait to try the same thing in the brighter colors we have selected. I think the block for March will include an entire block layout so everyone can see where we're going. Fun!

I'm also spending quite a bit of time hand-quilting a project that I've been working on for 6 years now. It's a king-size Bowtie Block quilt made from 1930 reproduction fabrics. I made all the blocks 5-6 years ago. Then had some girlfriends baste the thing and THEN realized how long it would take me to hand quilt it. Oh my....every winter since I drag the thing out and try to do some more. I have to admit that this winter I have made more progress than usual. I think it is because I have finally realized that if I don't just finish it, I may never get it done. So 2009 may be the year of the Bowtie Quilt. I'll keep you posted!

Time to get ready to join a girlfriend for Mexican food for dinner! Later...

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Winter returns

We are waiting for a snowstorm to hit tonight. According to the weatherman, we could get 4-6 inches starting with freezing rain. Doesn't that sound lovely??? I was pretty excited to have most of our 2 feet of snow melt during the nice winter thaw we had 2 weeks ago. But the reality is that we probably have 2 more months of winter.

While the design work continues for us, Jeanne and I are hard at it getting ready for Quilt Festival in Chicago mid-April. This weekend we decided what new patterns to bring with us and started to go through some older patterns that we are considering discontinued. We are also trying to figure out what we should prepare as kits to bring along. So far we have definitely decided to kit up Pincushion Treats and several of our Yo Yo patterns.

We hope your Valentine's Day was wonderful!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day!

We love Valentines. Over the years, Jeanne and I have collected quite a few vintage Valentines cards. This collection has been the source of much delight as we researched the designs and decided which ones we could adapt for pillows and quilts. Our Young Love collection of 6 patterns (each featuring a pair of sweet Valentine designs) have been very sucessful over the years. We are now working on a new design that would bring them together in one larger quilt-stay tuned for that this year.

To help get you in the mood for the 14th, check our web site to see the designs we have available. And don't forget to hug your sweetie tomorrow!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Ain't she cute??

I've uploaded a picture of Sophie #2 in living color today. I just love her and had so much fun deciding how to use my colors. I did want to mention that we decided we liked DMC #758 better for her skin tones. We had used #738 for Sophie #1 but think this is a bit more pink and looks better with the colors we are using.

We're having a bit of a Spring thaw here in Wisconsin today. It's almost 50 degrees and the sun is shining. Just the kind of day you'd want to be playing with colors! Jeanne and I met for lunch at a corner pizza parlor and talked some more about what we want to do at Quilt Festival in Chicago mid April. Time to really do some serious planning. We sat facing the outside so we could enjoy the blue skies! I hope you had some nice weather today.

We're also sending prayers and good thoughts toward our friends in Australia who are dealing with those horrendous fires.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Sophie #2 on site as PDF

Jeanne was able to get Sophie #2 uploaded as a PDF file yesterday so it should be easier to download and print her. Be sure to click on our site and look under the Free Block of the Month tab at the top of the home page. And be sure to take a look around to see what else we are up to. We think Garden Bunnies will be a quick and easy Easter present for your favorite little one.

I'm off to the Domes Botanical Gardens in Milwaukee, WI today with Bruce and my brother-in-law. They have every pocket full of camera lenses and I think it will be a photo shoot to end all photo shoots! I'm just excited to think about seeing things growing with great colors. It's SO white outside and, although the temperature is in the upper 20's today, we still have so much winter ahead of us here in Wisconsin.

Thank goodness for Sophie and her plans for Dress Up--she's keeping me smiling. Jeanne will be showing the colored floss version of Sophie #2 early next week and I'll probably post her tomorrow. Have a great day stitching-let the homework wait for a bit and curl up with Sophie!!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

To Pdf or not to PDF???

We have inadvertently caused some confusion with Sophie #2 today. Sorry for the confusion ladies-looks like we upload Sophie #2 as a jpeg file instead of as a PDF file. This is making it impossible to easily get Sophie to print. Some folks are not having this problem but others are. Jeanne has emailed our web support and we think it should be re-uploaded tomorrow as a PDF. Sorry-sorry-sorry.

We have now put big signs up in our studio that say-Only post PDF! I don't even know what PDF stands for....pretty dandy floss? pure delightful fun? who knows but a PDF seems to make for easier printing. We appreciate your patience. We thought we had it for February but we think March should be perfect now...wait a minute???? Maybe we should design a wall-hanging that is full of computer/web/printer images???? Oh no-that would be just too frustrating for us.

Sophie Block 2-Getting Pretty!

Take a look at our girlfirend Sophie! I love the mirror and mascara-don't you??? Jeanne started out by having Sophie's mirror say "Diva". But that seemed a bit bold for our girl. Of course, we think she IS a diva but didn't want you to pre-judge her without finding out a bit more about her.

Sophie can be downloaded from our website. We'll be keeping each of the month's blocks on the site all year round in case you mis-place her or find out about her mid-year. Jeanne needs to do some clean up on the web site and will be adding her picture to our home page later today, as well as making sure Sophie's name is spelled correctly (we don't want an identity crisis at this time in our lives!). I will be posting a colored floss version of Sophie #2 later this week with the floss numbers and a view of the fabrics we have selected.

Pink Chalk Studio delivered my new fabrics on Saturday and I'm ready to start playing with them. I'll share the work in progress as it develops. It's only 3 degrees here today so the wonderful bright fabrics I received are making the day feel warmer.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Sohpie Floss Choices

Sorry for delay in the floss selections but I thought Jeanne had the baggie with the floss and she thought I did...typical sisters--kind of like button, button, who has the button??? So, anyway, here are the floss selections we picked out to go with the printed fabric. We use DMC floss and 2 strands- 349, 834, 311,958, 906, 355, 738 or 758 for the flesh tones. We pick floss by laying the fabrics out and kind of just hunting and pecking for what we like. Sometimes we don't agree-that's the trick when there are 2 of us picking!

I am just finishing the final stitches on the 2nd Sophie block. She should be ready to post Monday or Tuesday. We decided to show 2 blocks with Sophie herself and then March will be what will go around one of these blocks. We are working towards a wall-hanging that will have views of Sophie herself and then the things that go into making her the fun Dress-Up Queen that she is! With March we will also give you the layout of the entire wall-hanging so you can start to think about the whole thing. We also think the blocks will work up quickly into a pillow or tote bag design.

I am loving the Crazy Quilt concept-what do you think???

I got the fabric I ordered from Pink Chalk Studio and am in love. I'll snap some pics and post them later--I have to have something to do during the Super Bowl Game!