Monday, December 31, 2007


And so it was back to dreary, poetic, Oklahoma. Okay, so it's dreary almost everywhere in the USA, this wintery time of year. Unless you have a white Christmas, it usually looks like this, sans the broken tree limbs. Everywhere there was WW3 looking devastation. The area was struck by an unusually big ice storm. The branches were over burdened and could not hold the heavy ice for very long and it was the oldest and most beautiful trees that seemed to sustain the most damage. My folks live in Claremore, Oklahoma and my hubby's folks live in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma. Don't ya just love that we took their land and their chief's names?

Ah well, on to my family. This is Rian and the newest member, Tucker Dean, to the Blanchard Clan. Pure entertainment at this age, 10 months. Tucker Dean loves my dad. I made acamouflage baby quilt for him. You can see it in the slide to the right with the Quilt's I've Made title. Here is my MIL that received the Diamond in the Rough quilt. She really hates anyone taking pictures of her, so I won't show her more than this. This is my mom with her baby, schnauzer, Daphne who is a reincarnated soul of Mother Teresa. Like MT, she goes where she is needed. Anyone in the family that needs her-mainly my mom, who just survived breast cancer and a mastectomy. If anything happened to her it would be bad. I'm sure if they had the money they'd buy a big RV to drive around with her in the windshield, surveying all that is hers to have. Some animals are like that, they are there for us to forget what ails us.

This is my dad, who is semiretired and lives to
play online poker. Nothing makes him happier than to win 3.00 in a 10 cent game. This is Margie, my grandmother. People wonder why I call her Margie, when we were young, they all thought it was cute when we said Margie girl and Teddy Boy, so it stuck. She is the one I have made a few quilts with.

Last but not least here's my immediate clan, the Brunners. My hubby, Bob and a painting of my 2 girls,
Chelsea and Jennifer, that my mom painted.

This is Chelsea with her score of an Ipod
and Jennifer, who begs often for a moppy little dog. This is the only kind we will get for her-it's a bar of soap.

So there you have it, dos in the series of tres stages or parts, if you will of my one long and hopefully, less boring filled blog update.

It's quilting tomorrow.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

So much news to report, I think it'll be in 3 stages...

Another Christmas holiday come and gone like the water that rises and lowers in the creek banks behind our house. I've got so much to write about, I'm going not bore the reader with a too long installment and will write 3 stages.

The three stages of blogs will be 1) movie reviews-as I was able to catch 2 really good movies while in Oklahoma with my family. 2) meet my family. 3) quilting of course.

Go see Atonement!!
It's so gorgeous and good. It's one of those period shows that turns in and around itself. You know what I mean, it starts at the end and then goes back to the beginning at different stages of the movie. Warning-do not go to the bathroom you'll miss a lot.

The other great movie,
but, not for the faint of heart, Sweeney Todd, staring Johnnie Depp. It's a musical with some rather shocking sights. There is a lot of blood, plain and simple. Johnnie Depp holds his own, with his singing voice, but, it's the director's wife, Helena Bonham Carter that will probably get an academy award or at least be nominated.

So ends the first of a short and sweet, three stage blog report.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

What's it beginning to look a lot like? what could it be? Nope, well, yes it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas, but that's not it. Yep, there's the border, can you see it peaking out at the lower end of the the quilt? Sooooo, it's beginning to look like I'm almost finished quilting my queen size, Diamond In the Rough quilt! WooHoo!!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Here's some of the quilts I've made.

Here's a few of the quilts I've made. One of these days, I need to get out all my quilts and have a picture taking day. I like to take my pictures from my top deck looking down on my bottom deck. As you can see from our second story window, it's a pretty slushy day here inthe blue grass. Mudders are great days to bet the horses, cause long shots win.

It's Christmas time so I get out my crazy quilt stockings. This is mine. Before I was a quilter, I liked to embroider. Didn't everyone start with stitching? Or did you jump right into sewing/quilting?

I've shared quilting with my grandmother, here is a quilt we made together. I've shared quilting with my mother, I don't have any pictures of hers, cause I gave them back to her after I quilted them.

These are slushy pictures of my backyard. Grey days in Kentucky, USA, are always good for quilting
and sewing or embroidery.

Here's some of how I'm quilting the Diamond in the Rough. Click for a close up.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Tutorial: Free motion machine quilted feathers

Free motion quilting means you don't mark anywhere on the quilt. You sandwich the layers and then put them under the machine and start quilting. The quilt will tell you where and how to quilt. I like a lot of visual texture, so I like feathers on stripes.

When you load your quilt, give yourself a few extra inche
s at the bottom, because, try as you might, there still might be some stretching through the quilting process. It's better to do this than have to piece batting at the end.

Supplies: favorite
wool batting-I like to open the rolled up batting then let it breath and soften up a bit, so there are no unseen creases in the quilt batting which might cause a bump. Favorite thread: I like a varrigated thread. It adds more visual texture. The big question you have to have to ask yourself, do you want to really see the quilt design or not. Wool batting has a good chair and good lighting before you begin. It will make all the difference in the world in whether you have a pleasant experience or not.

Load up a bunch of bobbins, so you don't have to stop in the middle.

Begin by "drawing' a
swirly line along the fabric. The is the stem or backbone of the feather. Next, start on one side and make loops from the bottom to the top of the loop. Carefully follow the stem with loops and the start at the beginning and do it all over again. Pay close attention to the direction of your feathers and have them all flowing in one direction. Unless you are designing from the middle of the border out to the ends. Last I highly recommend this video. It is one of the best descriptions of machine quilt I've seen. I took his class-which was really a demonstration. This video takes it up close and easy to understand. Get it!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

The top is done...woohoo!

This has been my life for the last couple of days. Diamond in the Rough. The finished product, to me, was worth the work. Here's the quilt, mitered corners and 3-D inner liner and all. I ran out today to find the stripe for the border. I just love this color of blue and I've added an inner border to draw the color out more. Any accent color like that will make the chosen color pop out of the quilt.

I just wish it would dry up around here so I can take a decent picture of the whole quilt outside on my deck. I find laying it flat on the lower deck and shooting looking straight down from the top deck makes for a good picture of a queen size (which this is) or larger quilt.

Now onto the quilt machine tonight, so I can start quilting tomorrow. You know the quilt tells you how it wants to be quilted, let's


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