Sunday, December 28, 2008

It's The Beginning



Prince Charming is starting a new woodworking project. What you see in these 2 photos is the beginning of our entertainment unit for the big screen TV in the living room. It's all oak. We have cut it, planed it, joined it & now he's beginning some of the construction.

it's going to be beautiful!

I love Oak!

Sam

Friday, December 26, 2008

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Brown Log Cabin Quilt / Mine!



This quilt is one I started earlier in this year. I actually made 2. The first one that I finsihed was set in a "feilds & furrows" setting & I quilted it & gave it to our realtor on the day that we closed on our house. THEN I decided that this one needed to be set in another setting & I needed 8 more blocks. i had enough fabric, but barely. I set the blocks together & added the borders. i do not usually put light colored borders on a quilt, but this looked good. They are hard to see int he photos because the outer border nearly blends with the carpet.
Excuse the cat. That is Fiona. My grand-cat. She is the BIGGEST attention hound EVER. Soon as i laid this out to get a photo, she jumped int here & stretched out like it was HER'S.
I bought just plain muslin for the backing on this one because I am hoping to quilt it with a pantograph of acorns & oak leaves & I WANT to be able to see the quilting somewhere. The prints are too busy on the front for that pantograph to be seen, so I'll see it onthe back!
I have the binding sewn & pressed & ready to go too!

Sam

Ryan's Log Cabin Quilt





This is a Log Cabin Quilt that I made for my DD#2 LAST YEAR! All it lacked was borders. Since I am off work this week, I decided to catch up on some projects.
I was thinking that if I could get the quilts finished that I started, I could start *NEW* ones.....maybe, maybe not.
I took these photos in our bonus room. Since we watch TV up here, it's sort of DARK - the borders are purple!
All I lack now is to peice the backing. I got some polka dotted fabrics from Wal-Mart & I am going to cut them into 10.5 inche squares & make the back for this little gem! (backing got finished on Friday 12/26 and I uploaded the photos to this post...it's big enough, and WAY bright enough!)
it's bright, very bright. We call it the Skittles Quilt.
Once I have the backing done, it will go into the closet with my other finished tops, to wait being quilted.
I am really rotten about getting bindings done. so idecided that BEFORE I ever get to backings, quilting, or ANYTHING else, that I would get the binding ready. I already have the binding sewn togheter, ironed & rolled. All ready to go! I am hoping that I can keep my promise to myself & make sure that the bindings get done! I have a jar on top of my cabinet in my sewing area in the bonus room, it's got bindings in it for finished quilt tops! maybe seeing the jar will be a reminder to get them done!

Sam

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Fabric SCORE !



Okay
I just can't keep my mouth shut, so here goes. I bought some fabric today.
More? You say? Well, yes. I did buy MORE fabric. No, I didn't NEED it, I WANTED it. I had some "Christmas" money & decided to indulge myself.
A few months ago, I joined a quilt guild. They meet the second Monday of every month. I miss it more often that not, I just keep forgetting. (even WHEN I write it on my calender....) Other times, I can't seem to get away from work early enouhg to get there for any kind of fellowship....ANYWAY....my first time there they told me about a shop in KY that "is worth the trip" to go buy fabric. 113 miles ONE WAY from where I live later.......I came home with 35 yards of fabric.
Definately worth the drive. I bought 3 different backings. 108 inches wide. One was $8.50 per yard & the others were $6.50 per yard. (This past weekend, I bought 120 inch wide muslin from Wal-Mart & it was $6 per yard, mabe closer to $7...) These backings are Marcus Brothers! I bought 3 & half yards of each of those backings. i also bout 7 different regualr width fabrics. Each @ 3 and half yards. Two of the fabrics are the same print in a different color, I couldn't decide which one I liked best, so I got both. All of the regular width farics are either black, brown or dark blue background prints. i only bought one light colored print.
most of their fabric was only $3! Name brand, major manufacturers @ $3 per yard.
Where is this place you ask? In the middle of NO-WHERE Kentucky. No joke, I passed the building twice. It's called "Whittles Bargain House" in Smiths Grove, KY. On Hwy 101. Literally in the middle of nowhere.
Definately worthe the trip.
I bought the backings larger (longer) than I thought I might need them because I never know when I'm going to use them! I bought 3 & half yards of the "other" prints because #1 they were VERY inexpensive & #2 - if I use the prints for borders, I'll have enough length for even a KING size quilt. (since I like to tear mine the length of the fabric instead of peicing them...)

Anyway...I'm pleases with my purchases. Giddy nearly. I hope I "find" some more descretionary money to go back again. Only this time I'd like to have a better idea of what I SHOULD get instead of buying whatever I fancy.



Sam

Putting the Big Boys to Bed




It's been more than a littel chilly here in Middle TN, lately! Below freezing most nights.
I have been bringing in the "big boys" from outside. Bourbon (the Springer) just got a hair cut, so he needs to be brought in the most. Bourbon will lay on his little "bed" all night & not move unless called to. Briscoe (the Shepherd), on the other hand, will chew up everything, mess on the floor and tear up anything that is fabric. So? Briscoe has to be crated. He crates without problem. They both stay quiet, and they both stay warm.
Disregard all the mess, it is, after all, our basement garage. right now, we are using it for everything except parking cars!

Sam

Small & Handy Projects / Not Sewing!




My Prince Charming finished a few projects for me in my Long Arm Studio. The largest project was a shelf that he put up on our "dividing wall". I now have 16 feet of shelf space in my studio. It's sort of blank right now, but I will remedy that as soon as I find some baskets that I like. The second "big" project was hanging my storage cabinets on the wall. That was harder than it sounds because the wall that they are hanging on is cement blocks so every hole had to be drilled & then little metal inserts put in & THEN the bolts were driven through the cabinets to hold them onto the wall. He also put the peg board up too - actually attached it to the wall. In my old house the peg board was only leaning up against the wall under those cabinets. So it's an upgrade! The last project we did was to put up an extra peice of pegboard on the wall, it is mounted on 1 X 2's that are screwed to the wall. Voila! i now have a place to hang my stencils. I didn't have that before. These were projects that I have been wanting done, but they were not on the TOP of the list. I'm glad that they are done! See? This is why I call him Prince Charming!

Sam

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Home Made Ornaments





Darn it, this is the 2nd attempt to publish this post!

Maybe this time it will take...

You can "BOO" me now, but I have not put up a tree for Christmas in 5 years. maybe more.

On Saturday 12/6 we went to find our tree. DD#1 did her research on the web to find the closest Christmas Tree Farm. Found one in Clarksville. An hour away. We all got up early to trek to Clarksville to cut down our tree. packed work gloves, saw 7 battery powered chain saw. We get to the farm & there MIGHT have been 20 trees. And they all looked like Charlie Brown planted them! No joke! DD#! was hugely disappointed. Pouted like a 4 year old. We didn't even get out of the truck. We ended up going to home Depot & got a Frasier Fir. Nice tree...

We did not decorate the tree until this past weekend. DD#2 was home from college & both decorated the tree.

This evening I am showing you all some of my prized ornaments.

One is a beaded ball that DD#2 made for a 4H competition when she was in grade school. She won 1st place with that ball!

One is a clear glass heart that I glued beads, roses & ribbon onto. Very victorian!

One is a Snowflake made from beads. We made several of them, some in clear glass beads & some in solid white beads. They REALLY look like Snowflakes.

One is part of a set of ornaments that my DSD (Dear Sister Debi) made for me. There are 4 , each with our names on them. mine is the Santa that you see in the top photo.... I hope she makes some more, because the ones she made with the girls names on them will go to them when they set up house for themselves.

All of these ornaments are treasures, and they would likely look better in daylight instead of the flash of the camera!

See Ya !
Sam

Monday, December 8, 2008

Quilt for Christmas - Not For Me !






I still lack putting borders on this quilt. I made it as a commission.

My customer wants the borders to be Orange & Burgundy.

There are 144 blocks in this top! I didn't think I'd ever get them all done.

Pattern is Antique Checks / 9 Patch Reunion byAtkinson Designs.

I didn't have anywhere large enough to display it out flat that I could get a whole photo, except in my longarm studio. I have 3 florescent lights in there (so I can see while quilting) and the lights make this quilt seem brighter than it actually is. there ARE some bright prints in it, but it isn't in the crayon-y looking colors like it appears in the photos. The top photo is the border choices. And I have to choose quickly in order to get them onto the quilt, quilted & bound by this time next week.......

Sam

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Christmas Fabric




last month I quilted 2 Log Cabin Quilts for a lady that was giving them as Christmas Gifts this year. I am not real big one theme quilts, but Christmas Quilts stuck a chord with me. I don't know why, it just seemed like a good idea. So I decided that for 2009 I wanted to make 3. That sounds pretty agressive, but the 3 I want ot do are just going to be simple Log Cabins. 2" strips. I'm fairly certain I can crank those babies out in plenty of time. ha! It will give me an excuse to get a few more Christmas themed Pantographs! I have 2. One is a super simple Christmas Tree & I have another one that is a Snow Flake. I'll have to hunt the web-sites for a 3rd.
anyway- I really, really thought it would be soemthing very nice to have, especially for my girls, to have a Christmas Quilt , that they can drag out once a year & display year after year. Me Too!
Well, I have attached photos of the fabrics that I have gathered so far. I need more "lights". I am trying NOT to buy any cartoon or kitchy prints. I want timeless designs. Most of what you are seeing I bought from Stitcher's Garden in Franklin, TN. They are moving thier store this month. They have the largest store I have ever been in. it sure lacks ambiance (sp?) but what they lack in looks is made up in selection. bolts & bolts & more bolts. Stacks, scads & bunches. they do NOT have discounted prices. Most of what you're seeing here is $7 - $9 per yard stuff. It all feels delcious and looks even better.
The photos are more rich in daylight, but I took these photos at night in our bonus room in my sewing area & only had the clamp lights to work with.
the "squares" are an old Thimbleberries print called Candy Coated Christmas. I bought this yardage several years ago. I cut out all these blocks last weekend. I think I have 221 of them. I figured I could use them as the center of a Courthouse Steps block , or the center of a Log Cabin block or even the center of a modified Square in a Square. THAT print was EXPENSIVE. it's selfish, but whatever block those squares end up in, is a quilt that will STAY at MY house. it won't be a gifter.
I thought my BFF, Kat, would like to see what I have accumulated!

Sam

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Recent Sewing




You might ask, how come my blog is named "Sam Quilts" and I dont' show too many QUILTS on my blog......well, I been busy!
I AM sewing right now, just not for myself. And since it's not for me (or my family) I just don't care to post all the photos until the quilts are completely finished.

I am making a TN Volunteers Quilt (commissioned by my neighbor) that is a lap size for her son. It's BRIGHT. It's turning out really nice too. I have it on the rails right now.

The 2nd quilt that I am making is a king size. I am using the "Antique Checks" pattern from the "9 Patch Reunion" Book by Atkinson Designs. The commission comes from someone I work with. It's intended as a gift for his wife for Christmas. He requested FALL colors, so this quilt is not hard for me to make. I like the pattern & I like the colors. He wants orange & burgundy borders. I have the border fabric (got it last weekend) but I bought 2 different bugundies & 2 different oranges. Soon as I have the body of the quilt finished, I will make him choose which 2 colors he likes best. Since it's King Size, I don't feel like I am ever making any headway on all the blocks!!! Well, today I have all the blocks 75% completed. it's going to be a very nice quilt.

So ? Just so my readers don't think I DON'T any make quilts, I DO !! Once I get these 2 done for Christmas, I have about 6 that I have started & are in various stages of completion & once I get BACK to them, You'll think I can crank them out quicker than Bonnie Hunter....I'm only good for about one every 6 or 8 weeks!

Oh, yeh, if anyone needs "TITANS" fabric, I have about 9 yards.

See Ya ! The sewing machine beckons!

Sam

Making the Bed




I didn't make the bed today because I got up to have a cup of coffee with Prince Charming and then when I went back to the bedroom to jump in the shower & make the bed, the CAT had jumped up there & looked really cozy in my quilts.
I went back twice later in the morning to amke it up & he was still there.
He must have been cold....I gave up after about 1 PM.
Oh, yeh, the cat is turning 14 soon & his name is Smelly.
He's named after a song off a Sit Com.

Sam

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Thanksgiving Cupcakes



These are my rendition of "Pumpkin cupcakes".

The idea is from the book I got earlier this month : "Hello Cupcake"

Thiers look nicer, I don't have as much experience in decorating as they do...

I think they came out really cute! And they are super sweet. I "made" the orange sugar. I couldn't find any & I didn't want to order any - so I put 2 cups of sugar (much more than I needed, as it turns out) into a zip-lock bag & then added the gel frosting tint & mashed it until the color was uniform. Worked like a charm.

The cake part of the cupcakes is a French Vanilla box mix with a can of pumpkin added & pumpkin pie spice too. I am anxious to EAT THEM.

Whatcha Think?

Sam

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Christmas Customer Quilt




This is a Christmas Quilt that belongs to a customer. It is showing more yellow than it really is, but that's because my walls in my studio are yellow... This is the 2nd one I did this weekend. Both of them were busy Christmas Themed prints so I chose a very simple pantograph for them both. I used "Tannenbaum" by "Willowleaf Studios". I quilted the one in the photos (here) in dark green thread & the other one in red thread. I think my customer will be pleased. She had asked me to do something super simple.

Gotta go - I hear my pillow calling me & I have to fold 4 loads of laundry before I can sleep!!

Sam

Hutch / Curio Cabinet / Knick Knack Shelf



It's finished! Finally. This cabinet is a replica that Prince Charming & I saw at an antique store over 12 years ago. The original was painted black and they wanted over $350. Well my Prince started this cabinet when we lived in Fayetteville (TN) and that was before we moved to Cedar Bluff (AL). That, my readers, was in 1998. it sat in our "shop" in Cedar Bluff for 10 years. We moved back to TN 6 months ago and my Prince finished it today. It turned out beautifully. I am going to put all my Fitz & Floyd Rabbits/Bunnies in it. So I guess I could call it my bunny Hutch ???
I asked him to stain it dark. It's solid oak. And I simply love it.

Sam

Biggest Pot


Prince Charming requested clam chowder today. Well, I wanted to make a bunch, so while I was at Wally World last night I bought a 16 quart pot. I would have bought the 22 quart pot, but thought that since the microwave is over the stove, the 22 quart would be too tall....I tripled my recipe (probably quadrupled the clams) and this pot is 75% full. Yum, Yum.

Sam

Win, Lose, or Compromise?



I was cooking this afternoon. Special request from Prince Charming. He wanted Clam Chowder. Well - the favorite Fat Dog will not stay out of the kitchen while I cook. Ever. She will , however, stay on a rug if there is one. Well there ISN'T one. So I got "her" blanket from the bedroom & laid it on the floor . She plunked herself down on it & there she stayed all afternoon, while I cooked. She was probably waiting for me to drop something...I did, some potatoes....
That's my baby!

Took the big dogs for rabies & booster shots yesterday. WOW ! I am now $80 less wealthy. They behaved so well. Bourbon only growled once & that's because one of the doctors came out & hollered someone's name...he growled big time. Some lady grabbed up her kid & made him stay close to her. Good thing, Bourbon doesn't appreciate children. Briscoe cried when the doctor stabbed him with his first shot. Since they were both so well behaved, I took them through the drive through @ Mickey D's & got them chicken nuts. They loved them!

Sam

Monday, November 10, 2008

Hello Cupcake!


I bought the cutest book at Books A Million on Saturday while shopping w/ both DD's....it's called "Hello Cucake".
It has the most creative, custest decorating desings for CUPCAKES. I LOVE cupcakes. They are the perfect portion & a portable snack.
I amso excited about some of these designs.
If you go to amazon.com , you can see pages from the book.
I want to make PANDA cupcakes, SUNFLOWER cupcakes, BUTTERFLY cupcakes, CIRCUS cupcakes, BUNNY BUTT cupcakes, you really need to see this book. It opens up a whole new realm of decorating cupcakes!!!

Sam

Table Decorations



DD#2 was home from college this weekend. I didn't tell you all, but she had a car accident on Sept 29th. her car was totalled. This is accident #3 in 14 months. Anyway, this accident was not her fault (as was NOT the first one a year ago...) DD#1 & I have badgered her to come home for longer than 24 hours. It was a nice visit & she got to see the car that we got for her. she is still driving my station wagon & had to drive it back to college. i could not allow her the *new* car because I still lack getting tags on it. Oh ! She wasn't hurt in her accident either.
Anyway - both DD's & I went to lunch in West Nashville @ Red Robin (over rated...) and then we went to "World Market" I bought the table runner & the candle sticks. I am ashamed to say I spent 1/2 of what I normally spend on groceries in a week...just on those 5 candle sticks & the table runner. Ashamed! I am ! they better last YEARS....then we went to Target. DD#2 needed a blowdryer. got a really nice one for $20. that blowdryer was the whole purpose of the whole trip.
Sunday, the DH took us all to breakfast. I like Cracker Barrel. I got vetoed, and the DD's wanted this new place that is called "Farmer's" it's a buffett place. No lack of food, but definately a loack of ambience, service & style. BUT ! The food was very good & they had lots of fruit too. I still want Cracker Barrel. maybe I'll order CRACKERS the next time I'm there.
Later on Sunday, DD#1 & I went to K-Mart & I bought the berry/pinecone garland & candles there. It all turned out very pretty. Even the DH likes it a lot.
As you can tell, I still can not decide what color curtains to hang in the dining table room. Yes, you read it right. "The Dining Table Room" - why? Well, because that's all the room has, a ding table. We have YET to eat in there. Thanksgiving will be the first meal in there. I like the red walls. More than I thought I would, and the old gold seat covers have GOT to go. I need to find a place that has drapery fabric. I really need to recover the seats, but I know for sure I'll have to do them again WHEN I find what I want for the window. I don't want anything heavy or dark because I really LIKE all the light that window affords in the afternoon.

How do like the table decorations?

Sam