Tuesday

Fall Table Runners

I finished a few more fall table runners today. I would have completed them earlier however I ran out fall prints big enough for backing. Over the weekend I picked up a few new fall fun prints to complete a few more little projects.

I made one of the table runners using the leftover scraps from my Skip to my Lou quilt I made last year. I also dug up some vintage floral/pumpkin print from my stash and added some borders left over from last year's quilt project as well.

I like having a variety of sizes of runners available for sale at craft fairs and these should be good additions to my inventory. The patchwork runner is 18 inches x 20.5 inches and the fall floral one measures 48 inches x 16.5 inches.





Friday

City Sampler 100 Quilt

I did it! I finally finished my Tula Pink's City Sampler Quilt. Her book, 100 Modern Quilt Blocks was definitely put to use. I did realize that I only made 98 blocks when I discovered I had unintentionally repeated 2. So I went back and made the missing 2. I think my quilt should be called the 102 City Sampler blocks - ha!

I won the fabric collection I used for this quilt top. All I had to do was add the few yards of Kona Ivory for the background. That is until I got to the backing. There was hardly anything left but a little pile of scraps so Jeff and I took a day trip up to Bungalow Quilting and Yarn in Ripon, WI where I won the fabric. I bought about 5 yards of matching fabric to piece the back and make the binding. Not a bad investment and what a fun day trip. It is always wonderful to talk to Judy Gauthier, the shop owner. Being in her presence is refreshing as she is so bubbly and sweet.

I would have finished this quilt sooner, but I really wanted to put it on a longarmer. The problem is that since I do not own one, I had to buy time on one. So I joined the local senior center where they have a Gammill. I got my name on the list and waited for my turn to come. It was late August when I got the call that September 14th was the first available date. Wow! That's a long time but I was willing to wait.

Adventures by Amy EllisSo yesterday I got to use the Gammill for the very first time. It was a lot of fun even though I was quite nervous at the start. I was so afraid of screwing up the quilt, but I reminded myself that I did use a smaller longarm quilter already so it should be no big deal. The ladies who volunteer at the senior center were so very nice and knowledgeable that it was very easy to quilt this extremely large quilt.
They did all the setup. They wound the bobbins with my thread choice, they loaded the backing, batting and quilt top onto the rollers and set up the pantograph. All I had to do was run the machine. Easy peasy. The whole process took less than 3 hours and cost me $59.

When I got home I was exhausted. I wanted to attach the binding but I was just too tired. So I relaxed for a few hours then got up the energy to make and sew the binding to the back of the quilt.

Today I finished the part where I folded the binding to the front and stitched it down. I was a little concerned about the thread. The only match I had was a new spool of Gutermann. There's not much thread on those little spools and this quilt is a monster. With a decorative stitch on the binding, I knew it might be close. With a wish and some luck, the binding went on with almost no thread left. What a close call!
Adventures by Amy Ellis

I am so very happy that this quilt is finished. It's been quite a journey from start to finish. I feel I stepped out of my comfort zone with this fabric collection. It is called Adventures by Amy Ellis. The colors and patterns are beautiful but I don't think I would choose them on my own. And the City Sampler was quite an accomplishment. 100 different blocks. The cool thing is that after making all of them I know I will use some of these blocks again in another project.

Early in the project when some of the blocks were hanging on my design wall my son would walk by the room and ask what they were going to be used for. He really like the color combinations. How perfect...he just bought a house on  Lake Winnebago so guess what he's getting for a housewarming gift? Ha!

Adventures by Amy Ellis

Adventures by Amy Ellis

Adventures by Amy Ellis



Sunday

Madison Quilt Expo

I went on a bus trip to the Madison Quilt Expo yesterday. My plan for the day was to test drive longarm sewing machines. I did set aside some funds just in case I found any great fabrics, but I didn't really plan on purchasing anything.

I don't know why I even think that I won't buy fabrics. With the many fine fabric shops represented at the expo I cannot resist. I found so many pretty things. I even found Pete the Cat fabrics!

I also completed my mission of test driving longarmers. There were at least 10 vendors there and I spent time on the Bernina, Block Rockit, Nolting, Tin Lizzie, Avante 18, Innova 18, and the Gammill. The funny thing is that I was headed to the APQS booth when I stopped at the Gammill. My original plan was to skip that booth thinking that they were out of my price range. As I waited for time with the APQS people, I thought I would kill time with the Gammill rep. The test drive was amazing. I mentioned my concern regarding pricing only to find out it was much more reasonable than I ever expected.

At the end of the day, I narrowed my choices down to two. I have a lot of things to take into consideration before I finally decide. Then there's the issue as to where to install it. I have two places it could go so I'll have to figure that out.

This is such an exciting time!

Friday

Halloween Twister Table Topper

I completed the halloween version of the twister table topper today. I love the whimsical border fabric on this one. The backing is made from fabric that glows in the dark. The skeleton print doesn't exactly match the fabric selections on the front, but that's OK. I just wanted to use the glow-in-the dark stuff!



Thursday

Canning Pickles from a Crock

This year's harvest has been overwhelming. I cannot seem to keep up with all the wonderful vegetables.

Today I canned pickles. I put them in the crock 5 days ago and could not wait to get to this point. What fun!

I used my neighbor's pickle recipe. Every year he brings me a jar of his pickles and they are a family favorite. I mentioned to him that this year I was going to try his recipe.

We cut pickle slices and spears and with 50 pickling cukes, ended up with 7 quart jars and 1 pint jar of finished pickles. It was so fun and easy that I think I will make another batch.

I certainly wouldn't want to run out over the winter.


Tuesday

Fall Twister Table Topper

I completed the fall table topper today. I really love the twister ruler. It makes this wonderful pattern so easy to create. The colors are so very pretty and nice for autumn. I have no plans on displaying this anytime soon. I still want to enjoy summer as long as possible.

Sunday

Garden Harvest

I finished canning 17 jars of raspberry jam today. Now that I've completed that, I still have to can more tomatoes. I've canned tomatoes twice so far this season and I think I will have to do it one more time.

This year's harvest has been amazing. I'm definitely not complaining about all the work. I have pickles fermenting in a crock right now and pretty soon the fall raspberry crop will be ready. For this batch of jam, I used the raspberries I picked in spring. I froze pint sized freezer bags of raspberries which made plenty of jam.

I will still have to freeze peppers and corn not to mention getting the pickles canned.

I really miss sewing but this sure is a rewarding time in the garden.

Saturday

Fruit Salad Sangria

1 bottle moscato (750 ml)
4 ounces strawberries, hulled and halved
1 orange, thinly sliced
1 peach, pitted and sliced
1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (1 large orange)
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice (1 large lemon)
16 ounces club soda

In a large pitcher, combine wine, strawberries, orange, peach, orange juice, and lemon juice. Refrigerate at least 4 hours or overnight. To serve, pour over ice and top each drink with a splash of club soda.