Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Some like it HOT

Here is a quilt I just finished quilting. It is a fun, bright batik top that was a BOM (Block of the Month), pieced by Judy C.

I used a varigated thread except the white backgroud. Cicrles are in the squares and a ying-yang design in sashing and corner stones.
The border is a busy print, so you are not able to see the quiltilng as much - it has a leaf design. I did some feathers in the larger triangle spaces.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Home Shopping

Now this is what I call "Home Shopping". Last weekend I was invited to an open house. The owner maximized every square inch of her space to hold over 500 bolts of fabric, a notions and pattern wall, tables filled with books, fabric bundles, a long-arm machine, custom-built cutting and ironing stations and much, much more.

It's a small shop - "so what" you say -- well, this is all contained in the basement of their home!

Colleen Plucinski and husband John are owners of Harvest House Quilting and inventors of the "Wacker". That little hammer pounds your seams into submission so that it lies perfectly flat. (And it works too.)

They vend at the national quilt shows and most of the local ones (Illinois).

I was amazed at her ingenious ways of maximizing her space! I could take a couple lessons from her.

If you would like to visit and shop, please call ahead 815-609-5831.
Harvest House Quilting, 24231 Apple Tree Lane, Plainfield, IL.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Quilting On..

Here are a couple pictures of a quilt I just finished quilting. It was pieced by Penni B. some 30+ years ago! She said she was 19 years old when she did the hand applique, hand embrodiery and pieced the blocks together. It was a project her mother helped her with. It has been sitting in a bag and boxed in the attic over the past 30 years. She found it and wanted it quilted to give to her mother, who is now 80 years old.

The applique and embroidery is very simple and has a folk-art effect. The piecing was very good, considering it was before rotary cutters, and it lays flat.
She used cotton and cotton-poly blends.
It was a pleasure to quilt this - a treasure for their family.
I did a freehand feather with red thread in the red frames, a swag in the outter borders, cross-hatching with white thread in the pink sashings, and SID (stitch-in-the-ditch) around each appliques with a simple meander in the white background.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Moe Better Ribs

Last night the grills were hot and the smoker was smokin' for the Ultimate Rib Tasting Showdown! Each couple brought their best ribs and sauce for a blind taste test.

The chefs...

Each team finished cooking their ribs and slathered on their own special BBQ sauce. Next, they moved to the kitchen to cut the ribs into pieces and put them into a pan, covered with foil. Each pan was identical and later labeled A,B,C,or D. Just for fun, we named them (A) Ain't Yo Mama's Ribs, (B) Bubba's Big Boy Ribs, (C) Cletis' Killer Ribs and (D) Darrel's D-Best Ribs. No one knew who cooked which pan, but they recognized their own batch of ribs.
We made up our own Ultimate Rib Tasting Score Sheet. The scoring categories were Appearance , Texture (juicy, tender), Sauce and Overall Taste. Each person could give one to four "bones" per category, a perfect score being 16 bones. Let me tell you - it was a difficult choice!
Rib tasting first, then back for the rest of the sides - including deviled eggs, two kinds of cole slaw, baked beans and corn bread! What a feast! A rib fest with no lines? This is genius!
The sheets were tallied and the winner is......Bob and Moe.....with a grand total of 105-bones! They are now the proud keepers of the beautiful pig trophy ~ which they will display on their mantel until next year!
Grilled to perfection, meaty, tender and juicy, sauced with just the right blend of spices, these are the winning ribs of the 2009 Ultimate Rib Tasting Showdown.
We had lots of food and fun! And we're already looking at recipes for next year!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Needle Work

Last Friday, I went on a mini shop-hop with a quilting friend, Sue. We spotted a shop after lunch and ventured inside. The Village Needleworks is a specialty shop for cross-stitch, needlepoint, embroidery and all things needlework. Full of eye-candy colors, hundreds and hundreds of threads line the wall and racks. All weights and a large variety of materials in every color you can imagine. There are plenty of notions and some unique gift items too. You'll also find a variety of needles - I'm always looking for some chennile needles for hand work.
There is a large assortment of beautiful, one-of-a-kind, hand painted canvases. The owner said they have many designers. And if it isn't on the wall or one of the pattern panels - she can find it for you!
A customer came in to pick up a gorgeous Christmas Stocking and this adorable frog.
Village Needleworks is located in the St. James Crossing shopping area, just east of Rt. 83 on Odgen. 816 East Ogden Ave, Westmont, IL. Phone (630) 321-1400. Owners Judy Horn and Cheryl Horvat.
Of course, our favorite was this framed "patchwork" made by owner Cherly Horvat. Click on photos for a closer look.

If you are in the area, stop in for lunch at the Moondance Diner (tortilla soup) and check out this shop. If you are not into needle crafts, once you visit, you will be!