Just in the Nick of … Bee Day

July Bee Day is tomorrow!  And I have yet to post pictures of the June Bee Day at Lynn’s house.  So just in the nick of time – here are some pictures of the Bee Day show and tell.

First up, our hostess with the mostest, Lynn.  She was thrilled with this antique donkey/elephant politically diversified quilt.  We heard about an uncle (or was it grandfather?  I’ve slept since then) who ran for office as both a Republican and a Democrat.

Lynn-with-antique-politicalSue was celebrating her graduation!  That’s one happy girl!

Sue-CelebratingKaren brought this beautiful block of the month sampler – looks perfect for a bed at the lake house!

Karens-samplerLemma spoke magic words over her bag and managed to pull out all kinds of tricks!

Lema-saying-magic-spells-ovFirst up was this block of the month. Nicely done, love the border print!

Lema's-block-of-the-monthNext Lemma pulled this show and tell out of her bag of tricks:

Lema's-2nd-show-and-tellAnd finally we were all wowed by this quilt on the design wall at retreat.  Lemma was certainly happy with it and I think she won the Most Show and Tell award!

Lema-is-happyJudy sported a pair of Frozen quilts for granddaughters.  Dede did the quilting and it is spectacular!  Love the snowflakes!  Judy inspired me and I’ve bought Frozen panels and fabrics for my granddaughters…. but that’s as far as I’ve gotten!  🙂

Judy-with-a-pair-of-frozen-Annelle, our new JSS’er, brought this Turning Twenty from a TVQG workshop.  Welcome aboard, Annelle!

Annelle-with-turning-20I brought my Grand Obsession, quilted by Susan Corbett.  I just finished the binding, sleeve and label a few days ago.

Me-with-Grand-ObsessionNext up was Sally with this simply exquisite Christmas quilt (also quilted by Susan Corbett):

Sally's-Christmas-QuiltI have to show you a close up of the sensational binding.

Sally's-quilt---close-up-ofAnd then a happy smiling Davene showed her happy flower applique:

Davene's-applique-blockAnd some amazing smocking on this dress for her granddaughter:

Davene's-smocking-on-dressNow what would a JSS Bee Day at Lynn’s house be without a final photo of Uncle Ed and some of my besties!

Uncle-EdSee y’all tomorrow!!!

Starting, Finishing and Continuing

Since my last post I have started a new project, finished the last block for a project and have continued working through the Grand Illusion Mystery.


Let me start with Bonnie Hunter’s Grand Illusion Mystery.  It is no longer a mystery!  New Years day was the big reveal.  Check out Bonnie’s blog to see the finished quilt! I’ve been working away on Part 1 and Part 2.  Part 1 is done!

Part-1-DoneAnd I’m in the midst of Part 2!  Pressing the pinks before I add the blacks…

Pressing-Part-2Thank goodness I have two (yes two!) retreats this month!  While parts 1, 4 and 5 are finished, this project still needs days and days of dedicated stitching time!  Check out Bonnie’s Monday Linky post to see how other Grand Illusionists are coming along.


As I mentioned, I did finish something!  Woohoo!  The last block of the Le Jardin hand applique quilt:

Block-9Now I just need to put all these bunnies together and add the borders.  Another retreat project!


Since I finished my bunnies I have nothing to hand stitch right now so I started a new wool applique wall hanging. It is called Twining Tulips and it reminds me of Spring!  You know there’s only 74 more days until Spring!

Starting I bought the kit at the Houston Quilt show a couple of years ago from the Wooly Lady.

Twining-TulipsI love working with wool and the bright colors are so much fun!

Have a great week, y’all!

The Best Christmas Present Ever & Grand Illusion Part 5

My dear hubby gave me the Best Christmas Present Ever!  I thought I was getting earrings (and I did get earrings, which I absolutely love) but he also found this Featherweight 221 at an estate sale:

FW-before-clean-upWhat a find!  I love it!  It came with a case and over 60 years worth of grime and dust bunnies.  I cleaned it up some for the picture above, but then took it to my friend Barb’s husband to give it a thorough cleaning and tuning.  Now it runs like the day it was born (April 20, 1948) – thanks Mark!

The case is in pretty good condition:

FW-CaseThe gold trim is too – here is the back:

FW-backI have a question – do you name your sewing machines?  I never have but I keep thinking of this machine as “Cutey Pie.”  Because it is so cute!

Even with all the wonderful Christmas activities (kids, grandkids, food, fun, earrings and featherweights), I have finished all of Parts 4 and 5 of Bonnie Hunter’s Grand Illusion Mystery this week!

Here are all the part 4 blocks:

Part-4-finishedAnd part 5 was pretty easy peasy this week – 25 aqua/yellow 4 patches and 4 aqua/pink/black 4 patches.

Part-5Up on the design wall:

Part-5-on-the-wallBonnie is having a Monday Morning Link Up if you’d like to see the efforts of other Grand Illusionists.  Now I just need to catch up with parts 1, 2 and 3.  Yesterday afternoon I stitched a few of the Grand Illusion blocks from Part 1 with my new Cutey Pie:

Featherweight-cleaned-upI hope you got your Best Christmas Present Ever and I hope you have a very Happy New Year!

Grand Illusion – Blowing Through Parts 2 & 3

By the title I bet you think I’ve completed both Parts 2 and 3 of Bonnie Hunter’s Grand Illusion Mystery…  I wish!  Oh, I’ve gotten some done, in between sneezing, blowing, napping and chicken noodle soup.  I’m fine, it’s just a mild cold, but this is not a good time of year to get a cold – right in the middle of a Bonnie Hunter mystery and Christmas!

Here’s is Part 2:

Grand-Illuison-Part-2I’ve cut all my pieces, marked my stitching lines and stitched one block.  Isn’t it cute?

Part 3 has a bit more progress:

Grand-Illusion-Part-3-WIPI’ve got 21 units completed and another 21 waiting for the final chain stitching.  I did find that this old ruler made it easier to sub-cut the strip units:

GI-Part-2---making-subcutsJust line it all up and slice through at the 2″, 4″, 6″, etc.  The ruler is made by June Tailor and is called a Shape Cut.

I do love the green batiks in this little block!

Grand-Illusion-Part-2If you want to see other Grand Illusionists check out Bonnie’s Monday Morning Link Up.

Now, I’m off to find some orange juice.  Have a wonderful, healthy week, y’all!

Grand Illusion Mystery – Part 1

I am so excited that Bonnie Hunter’s Grand Illusion Mystery has finally begun!  I’ve had my fabrics ready for weeks and weeks:

FabricsIn part 1 – we get to make pink and aqua half square triangles – lots and lots and lots of them!  A grand total of 280 2 inch (finished) HSTs!  Oh my!

Everyone has a favorite method for half square triangles – when I have this many to make I like using Star Singles:

Star-SinglesWith these you cut your fabric according to the package, place right sides together, with the dark fabric on the bottom, place the star single paper on top and pin.  Sew along the dotted line.

Sew-on-the-dotted-lineThis goes very quickly since there are no stops and starts.  When done sewing, cut on the solid lines:

cut-on-the-solid-linesYou’ll end up with 8 triangles.  Leave the paper on and press toward the dark, or on this case, the aqua fabric:

Press-toward-the-aquaLeave-paper-on-while-you-prLeaving the paper on reduces the chance of stretching or warping the fabric when you press.  Now, my biggest hint with this technique.  To remove the paper easily, hold the square in your left hand with your thumb nail pressing on the stitching line, tear off the paper with your right hand.  It will zip right off!

tear-paper-offTrim your dog ears, and in almost no time, you have 8 perfect half square triangles.  Yesterday afternoon I spent about 3 hours and made 144 of these cuties – I’m more than half way done!

144-HSTsIn part one of the Grand Illusion Mystery, we are also to take 200 of these HSTs and combine them with black and yellow squares to make 100 Broken Dish units.  Here are my black and yellow squares:

stacks-of-black-and-yellow-And here is my first Broken Dish unit:

One-Broken-DishOnly 99 to go!  (JSS’ers – do any of you recognize the turquoise fabric in the upper left?)

The sheer volume of piecing for this mystery overwhelms some people.  But I just want to get some done each week, keep organized on what is done and not done from each clue, share some tips and tricks on my blog and enjoy the process!  I know this is a hectic time of year, so I refuse to feel like I have to get everything done every week.  Lets consider this a haven of creativity away from the hustle and bustle of the holidays!

So, this is just part 1 – anyone else out there want to join me?  Check out the Grand Illusion Mystery page for more details.

And check Bonnie’s Monday Morning Link Up for other blog about the Grand Illusion Mystery!  Fun!

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