Spring Quilt Market 2015

Boy, I’ve had a little trouble finding time to blog this week.  It’s been pretty hectic since I got back from quilt market — lots to do.  I had a great time though — market is always so fun — seeing people and lots of inspiration.

I met Kellie at market and we had a great time.  Kellie is opening a gorgeous new shop in Melbourne (you Victoria residents are SO lucky) and she was shopping for stock.  I joked how much fun I had spending her money, but it was really fun to sit down with vendors and see lots of fun stuff.  I hardly even know where to start.  My pictures are all over the place, so I’ll just jump in.  I also posted a lot of pictures over on Instagram and I’ll try not to repeat any here — although there are one or two.

One of the first booths we hit was Birch fabrics.  They had tons of adorable little baby onesies hanging on two racks.  I want ALL of their beautiful knits NOW ;-D.

Thimbleanna:  Quilt Market

Another early booth was Art Gallery Fabrics.  They have such beautiful fabrics (I have a few sample spree bundles left over from them that will appear in my etsy shop in a few days) and there were lots of pretties in their booth.  I really like that big text fabric — it reminds me of the IKEA fabric that has been used a lot for quilt backs.

Thimbleanna:  Quilt Market

Art Gallery had all of their chairs covered in some of their basics fabrics — I loved it!

Thimbleanna:  Quilt Market

Lecein was another favorite.  And that cute little guy there taking orders was playing magnetic darts with people and giving prizes — lots of fun.  I LOVE LOVE their new lines of fabric — how I would love to have them all!

Thimbleanna:  Quilt Market

Brenda Riddle for Moda (more moda booths on my Instagram) — her new Windermere line is so soft and beautiful.

Thimbleanna:  Quilt Market

And here is the famous Small World quilt by Jen Kingwell (there’s a new quiltalong starting for this quilt on IG if you’re interested).

Thimbleanna:  Quilt Market

While we were talking to Jen, she asked what the quilt market buzz was, since she’d been unable to escape from her booth.  I noticed two things —

Darker, richer colors — almost like the jewel tones of the 90’s, yet different (also a lot of purple) …

Thimbleanna:  Quilt Market

Thimbleanna:  Quilt Market

Thimbleanna:  Quilt Market

and gauze.  Gauze in a lot of booths.  People mentioned using it in quilts, but I think I would worry that the quilts would wear out too fast.  I would use it for things like clothing, swaddling cloths, and scarves.  A few booths sucked me in and there will be a few bolts arriving in my little etsy shop later this summer.

Thimbleanna:  Quilt Market

This was an interesting booth.  Chenille-It.  They have strips of fabric on rolls and you sew it to a background fabric.  Then, when you wash the quilt, the strips bloom and make chenille.  It looked like it could be fun.

Thimbleanna:  Quilt Market

And here’s a quilt that was on display as you entered market.  I thought it was your basic applique quilt until I got closer to it.

Thimbleanna:  Quilt Market

It’s basically a bunch of quilted and bound mini-quilts that have been joined by a double row of yoyos that make sashing.  Very clever, and beautiful!

Thimbleanna:  Quilt Market

I didn’t take as many pictures this year as I have in past markets.  I was probably just enjoying market — we had so much fun talking to people.  This was Kellie’s first market without being in a booth and I felt like she was at market for the first time!

All in all, it was a perfect (exhausting) weekend!  Well, except for one little mishap.

Thimbleanna:  Quilt Market

Some wanker decided that he wanted an old rolly briefcase that I had totally forgotten was in the back of my car and he smashed in the window to get it. (I wish I had a picture pre-patch-job — it was pretty dramatic.)  Luckily, the case was empty. And even better, he didn’t take all my sample spree loot that was in the back of the car – that would probably have ruined the trip. It made the ten-hour drive home a little noisy, but I survived.

And now, there’s so much to do around here! The weeds are waist-high, the house is a disaster, and there’s the matter of a little swap that needs to be completed. AND, SweetiePie and Winston are coming for a visit this weekend. So there will be a lot of playing and even a 5k to add to my already tired state. Busy is good, right?

Have a wonderful weekend!
XOXO,
Anna

The Aunts’ Quilt — Month 7

Yipes! No time to blog these days. I didn’t even get to tell you about our fun Mother’s Day weekend. We escaped to Chicago for an overnight and had a great time. Everyone made it except for TheSecondChild and MeMum and BigDaddy. The kids in this family sure are a lot of fun now that they’re all grown up.

Anyway, I’m busy busy at Spring Quilt Market in Minneapolis, but I had to pop in to give the monthly Aunts’ report. We were to do 4 inset triangles this month. Even though it was a light month, I barely made it!

Thimbleanna:  Aunts' Quilt

I wish I hadn’t cut the triangles out before I appliqued on them. It would have been just as easy to applique onto a big square and then cut them out later. I worried a lot about stretching out those bias sides while I was handling the blocks.  And the pattern shows legs on the birds, but I’m undecided on that.  We’ll see.

Thimbleanna:  Aunts' Quilt

And, we certainly couldn’t forget the Cookie of the Month. This month, I had a craving for our old family favorite, Soft Oatmeal Raisin Cookies. MeMum has been making these since the dark ages I was a little girl and they’re particular favorites of mine.

Thimbleanna:  Aunts' Quilt

Soft Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

1 lb. raisins — Cover with water and boil. Let cool.
1 c. shortening
2 c. sugar
1 c. milk
4 c. flour
4 c. oatmeal
4 eggs
1 t. cinnamon
1 t. nutmeg
3 t. soda added to water and raisins
1 t. vanilla
salt
1 c. chopped walnuts

Cream shortening and sugar together. Add eggs. Sift flour, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt together. Add to mixture alternately with milk. Add oatmeal. Drain a little water off raisins, then add soda. Add raisins with water to mixture. Add nuts. Drop by spoonfuls onto greased cookie sheet. Bake at 375 degrees for 15 minutes.

Thimbleanna:  Aunts' Quilt

This recipe makes a lot of cookies and they freeze beautifully. They’re also great for breakfast! (Just sayin’!)

Ok — back to the fun. Sorry I don’t have more time to chitchat — hopefully things will slow down a bit in June. I wish you were all here!
XOXO,
Anna

Excuses, Excuses

Well, I don’t know about your place, but it hasn’t been very productive around here in the last week or so. I do have excuses though — so I hope I can be forgiven.

First off, today was MeMum and BigDaddy’s 60th wedding anniversary. Sixty Years. We had a nice little family dinner last night — it was wonderful to take the time to go out together and relax. It was fun to hear the stories of the day they got married (they eloped) and their wedding trip (they saw a mushroom cloud from an open-air atomic bomb test as they drove through the Nevada desert on their way home). Anyway, it was a good time, and we all feel fortunate that we could celebrate together.

Thimbleanna: Hands

And then, there’s been a fabric delivery here in ThimbleannaLand. Lots of beautiful Liberty fabrics. Personally, I think this excuse could stand on it’s own — it’s hard to resist fondling beautiful fabric – I know you understand!   Here are some of the pretty prints that have arrived:

Thimbleanna: New Liberty

These Liberties (and a few more) are loaded into my little shop. (Bundles will be coming soon!)  Thank you SO much to those of you who have purchased fabric — your purchases have made it so that the selection can expand.

So, back to my excuse list — I blame this next distraction on Jan.  She posted on instagram that she was mesmerized by a live feed of an eagle’s nest in Latvia and now I’m hooked too!  It started off, innocently enough — look at that cute little baby!

Thimbleanna: Eagle Nest

Before long, it was time for a little dinner. I was fascinated watching Dad Eagle (Is that the Dad, Jan?) feed the baby. I was amazed that when he pulled pieces off of a fish that were too big, he would put the piece back under his talon to rip off a smaller piece for the baby. And if he pulled up a bone or tail, he ate it himself — only the finest for that little Eaglet.

Thimbleanna: Eagle Nest

Thimbleanna: Eagle Nest

Then they settled down for a little nap, which was perfect timing.  I had to go take MeMum out for lunch so that the cleaning ladies that she doesn’t have (haha) could do their magic.

Thimbleanna: Eagle Nest

When I got back a few hours later, they were sleeping, but look!  Someone had re-stocked the pantry with quite a few fish.  They must be amazing fishermen!

Thimbleanna: Eagle Nest

I keep checking in now and then (they’re just waking up to a new day as we speak).  You might want to check these Eagles out too, don’t blame ME if you get hooked.  Blame JAN!!!!

And, if those top three distractions weren’t enough, there’s this:

Thimbleanna: Royal Baby Girl

Isn’t she beautiful (the knits too!)?  (And can we take a minute to oooh and aaaah over that sweet print on Kate’s dress????)  How exciting that little Prince George has a baby sister. I can’t wait for the name reveal — and … bring on the little smocked dresses!!!

In keeping with the royal theme, I had to hurry and whip up a little project pouch (it’s hard to tell, but there’s a clear plastic front on the pouch) with some Brit-themed fabric. Sometimes I take a little something to work on during my lunch hour at work, and I’m tired of using ziplock bags. Everything was in my stash (I love it when that happens) and this was a quick little project. I’m planning on making a few more — these will be perfect for my Chuck Nohara blocks.  (Btw, CrazyMom has a cute pattern for totally clear project bags.)

Thimbleanna: Project Pouch

Whew! I’m done making excuses — thanks for sticking with me! Hope you’re having a great weekend — it’s a beautiful one here in the midwest USA!
XOXO,
Anna

Checking In

Man, I have no idea where the last week went. I feel like I just posted yesterday, but according to the calendar, it’s been 8 days. Work, Work, Work, it sure makes time fly. I’m sure you’re busy out there too — it feels like it never lets up, doesn’t it?

I spent the whole of last weekend cleaning. and boy, was it ever needed. Sort of big cleaning. Like, clean the windows cleaning — I can’t remember the last time I cleaned the windows. In addition to cleaning, we had a visit from Winston for a few days while the kids had a few days away. I enjoyed being able to take him on walks in the neighborhood. Spring is finally peeking out from under winter’s rock — late, but here. And looky who we found on our walk:

Thimbleanna: Ducks

Can you see them? It’s Mr. and Mrs. Duck!  Winston spotted them right away and wanted to go and play. Sorry about the picture quality, but I felt lucky that I had my phone with me. Anyway, if you’ve been around for a few years, you know that our duck couple is our official sign that spring has arrived. The trees are just barely showing a tinge of green and in spite of the snowflakes we saw this week,  beautiful weather is right around the corner.

In the meantime, I’ve been doing a bit of sewing here and there.  When I started the Aunts’ Quilt, I mentioned to the Auntlets that they might want to think about prepping the scallops for the border as we go along, in order to save a ton of work at the end — only I haven’t been following my own advice.  After I finished last month’s blocks, I started to panic a little.  Only a few more months and it will be time to do those borders and I hadn’t prepped any of the scallops.  So, this past week, I got with the program and prepped some scallops in the evenings while we watched tv.  Very fun work.  And pretty too!

Thimbleanna: Aunts' Quilt Prep

And there’s been another little project too. There are a bunch of crazies over on Instagram and I’ve followed them over a cliff. They’re having a quiltalong – you make a few blocks a month from the book “2001 Blocks of Patchwork” by Chuck (it’s a woman!) Nohara. (Click on the link, scroll down, click on the book and you can view a few pages).  I need another project like I need a hole in the head.  But, the ladies are a fun group, and what’s another deadline anyway?  It’s good to keep busy, right?  I hope I can finish some of them in this lifetime LOL.  Anyway, here’s my first block:

Thimbleanna: Chuck Nohara 570

Before I go, here’s a few fun links for you:
Randi is making smoothies and this one looks deeeeeelicious!
Flossie Teacakes wrote a great post about solids. Do you have a solids stash? Mine is sadly lacking. Hey — maybe we should have a Moda Bella Solids of the Month Club and build our stashes.
Speaking of Crazies, Ms. Ric Rac has her very first line of fabric coming out at market. Here’s a peek. I can’t wait to see it.
And finally, Irene has a new book coming out and I can’t wait to see it too. Spring Quilt Market is almost here — lots of exciting things on the way.

Thimbleanna: Aunts' Quilt Prep

Ok, Peeplets — I’m off to bed. Have a great weekend!
XOXO,
Anna

The Aunts’ Quilt — Month 6

Happy Tax Day — for those of you in the U.S.  Aren’t we happy that‘s over for this year?  The less said about that, the better!  ;-D

Moving right along, it’s the 15th of the month and therefore,  it’s time for the monthly Aunts’ Quilt Report.  How are you Auntlets doing?  I haven’t seen many updates this month — I hope you’re just too busy to post.  I will say though that Karen R is killing us!  She even finished and posted early this month — WooHoo Karen — Congratulations!!!  I barely scraped by this month, but I got my blocks done.  Here’s the applique block:

Thimbleanna: Aunts' Quilt

I had a hard time with the applique block this month. It’s definitely not my favorite, and I think my fabric choices made it even less of a favorite. Maybe the parts that really annoy me will get fixed, and maybe not. Anyway, here are the two pieced blocks:

Thimbleanna: Aunts' Quilt

And my little sneaky animal piece? I chose a deer this month and I think he’s cute.

Thimbleanna: Aunts' Quilt

Here’s what the blocks look like all together. They’re too big for my little design wall now, so I had to lay them out on the floor. I’m sure they won’t stay in this order, and there are a few little pieces that need to be fixed, but you get the idea.

Thimbleanna: Aunts' Quilt

And let’s not forget the Cookie of the Month — a girl needs sustenance for all this applique work. I had some leftover lemons from the Debutante Lemon Cake, so I decided to consult my cookie board on Pinterest.  I ended up choosing Chewy Glazed Lemon Cookies and boy, were they ever good!  A great choice while doing hand work and stitching.  If you like lemon, you should definitely try these cookies!

Thimbleanna: Aunts' Quilt

Ok Auntlets, don’t give up yet! According to our schedule, we’re halfway done with this quilt (can you believe it???) — it’s all downhill from here! For month 7, we’re scheduled to do 4 inset triangles. Easy Peasy, right?

Ok — get going!!!
XOXO,
Anna