Welcome to Farm Quilter

Enjoy your stay under the variable skies of Eastern Washington and watch the seasons change, from planting to harvest here on the farm...be sure to wrap up in a quilt during the winter, it's cold!!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Quilts from the Birmingham International Quilt Show

Some more lovelies to feast your eyes on!

This little pink beauty was 12" square!!!  Simply amazing! 

As a longarm quilter, I am always interested in the quilting, so I did take quite a few pictures of the quilting :)

Here is a picture of my quilting Vitamin F (friends) that I went to England with, along with our hosts for our 10 days in Tealby...Roseanne, Anne, Jeanette, Carol, Bess and Mary, with Beau in front checking out the quilts we made for Anne and Bess as our little "thank you"!  We had a marvelous 2+ weeks in England, and our time in Lincolnshire was the highlight...we didn't want leave for London, let alone head for home!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

More quilts from Birmingham, England

Wow, only Thursday and I'm back with more pictures from the quilt show in Birmingham. 

I forgot to take pictures of the "paperwork" for these quilts, so I can't give credit to the quilters...I am so sorry!  But just look at the creativity that went into these quilts...and the quilting!!!  As a longarm quilter, I'm always checking out the quilting of every quilt I see, and these were fabulous!!

Monday, October 7, 2013

Birmingham, England International Quilt Show

I got to go to England with 4 of my SewWhat quilting buddies in August.  We stayed with two lovely ladies (yep, they quilt too) in Lincolnshire...in wee little town that was beautiful, with such sweet people!  They took us on a coach with several other quilting groups to spend the day at the quilt show.  Everyone was so very nice to us!  Because it was a bit of a drive to Birmingham, we had a "comfort stop" of 10 minutes.  Let me tell you, all 50 of the ladies on the bus were in and out of the restroom and back on that coach in 10 minutes!!  Amazing how fast you can move when you are motivated!!  I have never seen such order in all my born days :)

The quilt show definitely set the bar high for any other quilt shows I go to.  There were around 2,000 quilts and probably 200 vendors.  No, I did not see all the quilts, nor did I get to all the vendors!  But I do have some gorgeous pictures to share with you.  I killed the battery on my camera part way through the show and had to use my iphone to take pictures for the rest of our trip!

Isn't this a cool quilt?  Looking from the front it is very confusing, but it has different pictures depicted on the accordion folds - I have never seen anything like this and it was awesome!!  As you can see, I tried to take a picture of the name of the quilt and the quilter, just to try to keep them straight.

I will be back with more pictures soon.  Driving home from my daughter's house tomorrow and I have a customer's quilt on the frame waiting for me.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Quilts for Colorado and the Washington Naval Base

Marilyn, a fellow quilter, who blogs over at http://northhillsquilter.blogspot.com/
posted the following:

Quilts for Colorado and the Washington Naval Base 


The Samuel Quilt Project is collecting quilts for both the Colorado flood victims and the Washington Naval base families.  If you want more information, they have a Facebook page.  Check them out if you are looking for a group that helps in times of disaster.  I'm hoping to send a few quilts after I take my daughter to college this weekend.  I'm hoping I can get organized and get my quilting back on track.

Bonnie Hunter, a fellow quilter, who blogs at quiltville posted about another group gathering quilts for those displaced by the flooding in Colorado.  http://quiltville.blogspot.com/search?updated-max=2013-09-22T10:19:00-04:00&max-results=2&start=2&by-date=false

If you have an extra quilt you could spare, the warm hug you provide would mean so much to someone.

Happily dry here in Washington!!

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Two Recipes

One Good Thing by Jillee is a fabulous blog for recipes for all kinds of things.  Today I am passing on links to her Navy Bean Soup - haven't made this one yet, but I have never had a recipe from Jillee be anything less than wonderful - and her absolutely divine (and so easy) English Muffin Bread.  You can find the soup at  http://www.onegoodthingbyjillee.com/2012/02/by-special-request-my-moms-navy-bean.html and the bread at http://www.onegoodthingbyjillee.com/2012/02/moms-english-muffin-bread.html
I made the English Muffin Bread last Friday and gave away 2 of the loaves because I am at my daughter's home and her freezer space is very limited.  Everyone wanted the recipe!!  It is fabulous to find a great tasting recipe that only has 5 ingredients and is so easy to make!  I have eaten one whole loaf by myself in one week, only by limiting myself to 2 slices a day for breakfast toast!!!  I will be making this recipe over and over again...think Christmas giving too!!
Here is a picture of the 4 loaves I made...mind the drool!!!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Another Finish

I bought 24 fat quarters of material with dots...went a little crazy, I know.  I made 3 baby-sized quilt tops with that dotted material when I was in Florida 2 years ago and this is the second one I finished.  I forgot to take a picture of the other one as it was a rush to the finish because I was sending it to Australia with the grandfather-to-be so I didn't have to mail it.  It was a log cabin too, but a different setting.  I used yellow Minkee for the backing - I am really loving how Minkee shows off the quilting.  Without further ado, may I introduce Spotted Logs, finishing at 54x64:
 Minkee back
 One of the fancy feather corners
 The other fancy feather corner...wanted something a little different!
 Love the open swirls in the blocks.  I was able to do all the straight line and swirlies without stopping or tying off my threads - yippee!!!
The border quilting was inspired by Angela Walters, the straight line work in the blocks was because of what I learned from Lisa Calle (leave some space) and the swirlies were inspired by a class from Kim Stotsenberg.  I have taken three classes on longarm quilting in the past 9 months and got to combine all of them in this quilt!  Sweet!!!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Quilts For New Granddaughter

I am very late posting these pictures since I sent the quilts off in early May and my granddaughter was born June 4th...but here they are:
Love this ABCs material and the border fabric is so much fun that I had a hard time quilting it because I was searching for all the animals!!
Isn't that just the cutest fabric!!!  This is a crib sized quilt that I hope M'Kayla will get lots of use out of.
Then I had to make her a car-sized quilt...you know they just need a draggy quilt and this is the perfect size.  My dad, M'Kayla's great-grandfather, is holding the quilt for me.  And I used Minkee with raised dots for the backing - really showed off the quilting well!

I am looking forward to getting pictures of M'Kayla with her quilts when I go to Texas in July!!

Monday, June 17, 2013


With a great deal of thanks to Amy of http://www.aquiltingsheep.com/ I now have the Bloglovin' button on my blog.  If you would like to continue to follow me (and I hope you will) with my sporadic posts, please click the Bloglovin' button to the left.  Fingers crossed, I did it right and it works!!  If it doesn't work, will someone please let me know and I'll have another go at it!  Blessings!!!

Google going away

If I knew how to put buttons on here, I'd do the Bloglovin thing, but I don't remember where to go to change my page like that AND I have never been able to get a button to attach to my page.  Of course, I probably have to go to Bloglovin and do something there as well.  I am so frustrated with my inability to figure out how to make this computer do what I want it to!!  I wish it understood plain English and I could just talk to it and tell it what to do :)  If someone knows what I need to do, I would certainly appreciate any guidance...or I will have to sign up for a computer class at the community college about 50 miles from me!  Why do "they" always have to fuss with things on the computer that I don't think are broken?  I do believe they do it just to show me how easily and quickly they can frustrate me!!!  Guess I need to go quilt and chill out!  Or, since it is almost 2:30 A.M., maybe bed would be a better choice!!

Saturday, April 20, 2013

How to Share What You Love From a Blog

Christy from http://www.southernplate.com/ wrote a fabulous post about how properly to share recipes we find online here http://www.southernplate.com/2013/04/how-to-support-your-favorite-food-bloggers.html  While her post deals with the problem of food bloggers, the same thing applies to quilting bloggers.  Our pictures get copied and posted to other blogs, pinterest or facebook where they are claimed by others as theirs.  Not cool.  Christy shows how to properly post/blog about something you find on someone else's blog or facebook.  Now, I don't blog for monetary reasons, but I would be very unhappy if my posts or pictures turned up somewhere else without my permission.

Check out Southern Plate - Christy has great recipes, a fabulous sense of humor and writes fun posts with yummy pictures!  And do read her post on supporting your favorite food-bloggers...and remember it really applies to all bloggers :)

Quilt on and may your thread never get tangled!!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

I Need Your Opinion

I am trying to decide which border fabric to use on my controlled-scrappy quilt.  Which one would you choose?  The size of the border is approximately what is showing.
Border one:
Border two:
Border three:
Border four:

Class with Lisa Calle

If you ever have an opportunity to take a class from Lisa Calle, DO IT!!!  She is warm, friendly, encouraging and fun!!  And talented, oh my is she talented!!!  She has changed the way that I look at a quilt for quilting!  This is a picture from the class I took with her...the quilts in the background are ones she quilted - YUM!!!
A very happy class!!!!!

Lovely Giveaway!

44th Street Fabric at http://44thstreetfabric.blogspot.com/ is having a lovely giveaway...if you like polka dots!!  I love them and would love to win some :)  Check out the blog and leave her a comment if you'd like a chance at winning some beautiful fabric!!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

What is it worth?

 Sam Hunter, who blogs at http://huntersdesignstudio.com/ posted this and I LOVE it!!  I have been asked this question before by people who have been interested in a quilt I made.  Awesome answer here!!

"This morning I caught a post on a quilting Facebook feed… a member posted a picture of a delightful baby quilt and asked what she should charge the neighbor that just asked to buy it from her. She mentioned that the quilt was made from a panel with pieced borders, and that the quilting was done in threads to match the fabric colors (oh, the thread changes!). She mentioned she was thinking $85. A fellow poster thought $100 was better. Another said it depends on the closeness of the friendship.
First of all… I’m not naming names here because I don’t want this person to feel pilloried – far from it, I absolutely appreciate her question and have one heck of an opinion about how it should be answered… a rather, ahem, shall we say passionate opinion – you are warned! Her question, which I hear dozens of times a year, is absolutely legitimate. How does one price a handmade piece of work?
And to note – there is a difference between what it’s WORTH, and what you can ACTUALLY GET for it. So keep that in mind and I’ll address this difference at the end after I show you how I calculate the WORTH part of it:

1. Determine the cost of the goods involved. Fabric is averaging $12 a yard, and even if you bought the fabric years ago, it will still cost you $12 (plus sales tax) a yard to replenish what you used. Same goes for if it came out of your scraps. You still bought the original yardage that the scraps came from… they didn’t give you a 25% discount assuming that a quarter of it would head to your scrap basket! If you got it on sale, wonderful! The savings are for YOU. You hunted it down. And it’s probably the only “freebie” your going get out of this process so take it and run.

2. If you don’t want to count out the yardage of all the little pieces, instead calculate the total area of the quilt top (let’s say it’s 48″ x 60 for a generous lap quilt), and then multiply it by 3 for a simple quilt, and 4 or more for a more complex one – then divide it by 1440, the area of a yard of 40″ fabric. Why these numbers? The fabric it takes to make the top of a simple quilt is about double the surface area because of all the fabric lurking in the seam allowances – and don’t forget the binding! The other “one” is the backing. And use 5 if you paper pieced most of it (because there are way more seams and you have to cut bigger for paper piecing). So for this simple lap quit: 48 x 60 = 2880, 2880 x 3 = 8640, and 8640 / 1440 = 6. So 6 yards at $12 a yard is $72 for materials.

3. Do you wash and iron your fabric before you use it? Add 25% for the time and water and electricity and wear and tear on your (probably expensive) iron and your Netflix subscription for the movies you watch while you iron. Ladies… it’s 2013 and in 2013 we do not iron for free.

4. What did the batting cost? The thread? The embellishments? Add those in. Yes, the thread – because you have to replenish it! And you are probably using a lovely, high quality, long staple cotton goody that can’t be had on sale at the big chain store so yes, you must charge for your thread. And note that there are other consumable products that you could charge for here: machine needles, blades, template plastic, fusible web, etc.

5. Now we get to TIME. How long did it take? Not just the cutting, pressing, sewing, but the “sits and thinks” part of the equation. The pondering, plotting, and extra trips to the store for one more FQ of the perfect print for that corner. The stitching of the binding. The label. All of that. I’m going to, for the sake of easy numbers, say my simple lap quilt took 15 hours – in other words, about a day to choose, cut and piece (assuming all the materials were already in my studio), and another day to layer, quilt and bind. Yes, the binding you do in front of the telly at night is still hours spent on the piece.

6. How much do you think your hourly rate should be? $10? $20? $30? You are certainly worth more than minimum wage. You are a skilled craftsperson. In my case, I’ve been quilting for 25 years and sewing for 43. This is not an insignificant statement. If you hire that depth of skill to lay tile in your house or make cabinets for your kitchen, it will cost you more than $20 an hour. My years of skill ensures the quilt is well constructed, made of quality materials (chosen with a discerning eye and years of practice), and executed with knowledge and a passion for the artistry and craft. This is WORTH a lot. So I’m going to go with $20 an hour for my simple quilt (I would go up for something more complex, and add even more if it was a commission for a pain-in-the-patootie client). Thus – $300 for my labor, and I’m rounding up to $100 for my materials (high quality cotton batting, threads from Aurifil and Isacord, etc). So my lovely little lap quilt is $400.

WORTH vs. What you can get

And I hear you laughing. No one’s gonna give you $400 for that, you say. And you are probably right. But here’s the thing… the fact that society has poo-poohed our grandmas’ prowess with a needle while celebrating their husbands’ prowess with a plow is a sad history that we need to rectify. “Women’s work” has been terribly devalued. And ONLY WE CAN CHANGE THIS. It is up to us to educate the public that what we do has WORTH. And we have to do this with confidence. We have to OWN IT.

So the way I tackle this is to state the gist of my calculations to the person that offers me a department store sale price for my work. I state the price, and then I educate them on what it takes to make a good quilt. The fabric quality. The time. The years I’ve spent honing my craft. I point out that I don’t work for minimum wage as this is much harder than “do you want fries with that?” Then I re-state the price. I own it.

Most of the time they don’t buy, but that’s OK (and if I absolutely want them to have the quilt I give it to them for free). I won’t sell it for less because I feel so very strongly that to sell low is to continue the myth that our work has little value. Either I get what I’m worth or it’s a precious gift. I’m taking a stand for the team, OUR TEAM. Every time we let hours of work out of the house for $5 an hour and free materials without the educational part of the discussion we are letting down the team.

I truly get that our original poster might only be able to squeak $100 out of this sale. And that she might have to put aside any philosophical stands to get her hands on that $100 to shore up the grocery budget (and I have absolutely done this when I needed to). But I really hope she adds the “lesson” to her invoice when she picks up the check!"

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Finished Follow the Son

This quilt was the first time I tried multiple curved pieces in a quilt...and only the second time I have pieced curves.  The pattern is called Radiant Suns and is forgiving of piecing errors.  The quilting took an hour per 9" block because I did a different pattern in each of the five pieces that make up the block.  I love the way it turned out.

I changed one quilting pattern in one part of the orange blocks to make them a little different from the green and purple blocks.  I'm so happy to have this one finished.  It will be going into the quilt show here in town the end of April.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

What I Got from the Fat Quarter Shop

I received all these goodies over a week ago, but between quilting classes and a machine quilters guild meeting out of town Friday and Saturday and my local guild's Quilt Til Ya Wilt on Monday, I have been a bit busy...so here they are:
Two bolts of Kona grey - one light and one medium, a darling quilt pattern from Crazy Old Ladies, a yard of that totally cool black and white and 2 yards of wide blue paisley for the backing on the quilt I'm making for my daughter's VFW to raffle off.  Ok, it was a bit more than the $150 gift certificate, but not much...I really wanted free shipping, I needed the backing material and the black and white material AND the pattern with on sale!!!  Thank you so much, Fat Quarter Shop!  Awesome place to do business and I highly recommend them to everyone!!!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Missing Mom

This is not a post about quilting today.

Two years ago tonight I was in Reno caring for my mom who had come home from the hospital that morning.  On the 10th of March she had fallen in the wee hours of the morning, knocking herself out and splitting her head open.  My dad called the ambulance and got her to the hospital, but she wasn't doing well.  I had just driven to Florida to begin my pet/house sitting for my daughter, Tristan, while she was deployed to Afghanistan.  The night of the 10th, Tristan called the hospital to find out how her Nana was doing and the nurse told her that if she wanted to see her Nana again, she needed to get to the hospital that night.  Well, that was a bit difficult with Tampa being on the other side of the country!  Undaunted, she got on the phone and worked with a travel agent...at 3 AM on the 11th we finally got tickets on a flight leaving Tampa at 7 AM (and I still can't believe the price on a one-way ticket!), making it to Reno by noon.  We got a rental car and drove directly to the hospital.  My best friend (she was at my first birthday party), her sister and mother were with my dad at the hospital.  At first my mom didn't know who I was, but she told me my hair was pretty, "just like Susan's" she said.  I told her that my hair was like Susan's because I was Susan.  After that she seemed to know who I was.  My daughter, however, got to play the role of all of my daughters that day. 

On Saturday morning we had a hospital bed and oxygen delivered to the house and set up in readiness for my mom coming home from the hospital.  Mom was home and comfortable by noon.  When Tristan came over, Mom knew her immediately and told her that she needed a little nap before she got up to make cookies for Tristan to take with her to Afghanistan.  Tristan totally lost it because Nana always sent her cookies on all of her deployments and she knew she would not be getting any cookies from Nana again.  Amazing how a few hours of baking cookies on my mom's part translated into such a concrete example of her love for my daughter.  That was really the last time my mom talked to us.  I spent the night on the couch in the family room with my mom so my dad could sleep.

Sunday, March 13, my dad hurried out in the morning to run to the store.  He came back home with a beautiful bouquet of roses for "my lady".  My mom always loved to get flowers and roses were a special favorite of hers.  When a nurse friend came over to visit, I got her to help my turn my mom over.  We put the roses on a table a foot or so from my mom's head, she opened her eyes and saw the flowers and when we told her that my dad had bought them for her, her eyes widened and she smiled.  That was the last time she opened her eyes.

Right before 5 PM, while my dad and I sat on the couch in the family room, I noticed that my mom's breathing was slowing and I told my dad that she was going.  We each held a hand while my mom took her last breath and easily slipped away from us, going home to her Savior.  At 89, she had lived a long, happy life and was ready to go home. 

My dad, almost 92, is still living on his own and going to work most every day.  My husband and I are planning a cruise with my dad later this spring.  My oldest daughter will be presenting us with a new baby this May or June.  Tristan is planning on getting married in July of 2014 and wants her Papa to walk her down the aisle.  Life goes on, but there is an empty space that only mom can fill and I'm really missing her.

Friday, March 8, 2013

The Fat Quarter Shop

I placed my order with the Fat Quarter Shop yesterday and the only thing hard about it was not putting all of everything in my cart!  I got a call from the Fat Quarter Shop shortly after I placed my order, letting me know that one of the fabrics I chose was not in stock in the amount I wanted.  The wonderful lady (I'm so sorry I don't remember her name) suggested several alternatives and talked to me about the true colors of the other choices I had while I looked on their website.  Obviously my screen doesn't show the true color of every material, no blame, just fact.  If you want to experience awesome customer service, incredible selection and some truly exceptional prices, Fat Quarter Shop is the place for you to shop.  If you have any questions, just call them and the friendly, knowledgeable ladies will be happy to help you in any way!  Check them out at http://www.fatquartershop.com

Monday, March 4, 2013

I won!!!

I got the most amazing email from SewCalGal who blogs at http://www.sewcalgal.blogspot.com that I was a winner of a prize for being a PR Angel for her recent 2013 Golden Quilters Awards.  I won a gift certificate to The Fat Quarter Shop, which won the category of Best Online Quilt Shop!!!  When I saw that, I figured I was the lucky winner of a $10 or $20 (if I was lucky) gift certificate and I knew I would have no trouble finding goodies at the Fat Quarter Shop to spend that gift certificate on.  Well, I was wrong.  I was so wrong I had to go back to SewCalGal's blog FOUR times to look at the prize listed...I won a gift certificate for $150.00!!!!!  I am gobsmacked!  My jaw hit the floor!  Talk about incredible generosity from the Fat Quarter Shop!  Thank you SewCalGal for running the Golden Quilters Awards every year and a huge thank you to the Fat Quarter Shop http://www.fatquartershop.com for the totally awesome, wonderful, fabulous, over-the-top prize!!!  I am dancing off to my quilt guild's meeting tonight!

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

2013 Golden Quilters Award Needs YOU to Vote

Before it's too late, you should hurry over to SewCalGal's website http://sewcalgal.blogspot.com/2013/02/2013-golden-quilter-awards-voting.html, to vote for your favorite quilt teachers, quilt book authors, quilt fabric designers, favorite online quilt store and SEW very much more.  There are prizes for voting too!  Voting ends February 28th.  SewCalGal wants you to recognize some of our most prolific and talented  quilters out there!  I voted, please add your votes!!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Getting Perfect Tension on your longarm

Jamie Wallen did a 10 minute video on how to get perfect tension on a longarm that I think is fabulous!  I just wanted to share it with all of you AND have a safe place to keep this link so I don't lose it!!!
If this helps you, please let me know!!

Friday, February 8, 2013

My Granddaughter's Quilt

The quilt is finished except for the label.  My daughter and her husband need to figure out the name for this baby due in May so I can embroider a label and sew it on.

 I went around all the ABC's and the pictures that go with them and just did swirls in the blocks between.

The fun was with the border - did a quilting pattern from Angela Walters' book (love the way it looks) - but the border fabric is just so darn cute!!!  Love the moose with marshmallows, raccoon with radishes, elephant eating, alligator with apples!!!

So nice to have this basically finished months ahead of schedule.  I'll be sending it to my daughter's MIL so she can take it to the baby shower for me!