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As has been pointed out by my mother, I haven’t updated the blog recently. Sorry, I’ve been busy. I have been stacking up things to post about though, so I’ll see if I can get them cleared off the desk top in the next few days.
Apologies for the bad photos. They were taken at night so I could drop the blocks at the post office the next morning on our way out.

This is a Pinwheel Surrounded block for Sudi-Laura. She had some large scale poinsettias with some smaller holiday prints to set them off. I’m not sure everybody understood that. Her colors included a bright light blue and some pink, as well as the traditional red, green, and whites. Unless you looked closely at the prints it didn’t look overly Christmassy. Some of the blocks that were made didn’t have any Christmas fabrics in them at all.

This is a Christmas Star for Courtney. She sent a chunk of fabric that she absolutely loved and wanted us to create blocks inspired by it. The Christmas trees were fabulously whimsical. I went with a simple tree and had been saving the rest of the Christmas words material for this block. The colors worked out perfectly.

The Around the World Christmas Quilting Bee has kind of ground to a halt. The swap organizer has more or less closed the swap, so now we are on our own. If we want to make more blocks we can, or we can just have our quilt mailed back. I am continuing to make blocks for quilts that come my way. My quilt is somewhere in England. I think it was heading to Leeds last time I checked. At the rate I finish things for myself, it won’t matter if it doesn’t get here before next Christmas!

I had an idea… and this is what came of it.

I saw something similar on a piece of wrapping paper from last Christmas. It gave me the idea of making a snow globe block. You could tailor the object in the middle to fit your recipient or the holiday.

This is only the second design that I have pretty much created on my own with out using an existing pattern or design and doing a bit of tweaking or color wrangling. It turned out pretty good.

I do have to apologize to Caroll for taking so long to move her quilt along. Her block was out of the design phase, but on a holding pattern behind the Halloween Costume in construction. Some things just had to get done first.

I still need to take some non-blurry photos of the costume. Daddy didn’t have too much luck with all of the frenzy for the candy. Perhaps I’ll get to those tomorrow. It will depend on the willingness of my model. She has a busy day scheduled, so she may just not be in the mood for a photo shoot.  It may be Friday before I get some clear shots of the Blue Water Fairy.

I have two more blocks merrily on their way, with a third waiting in the wings.

Andrea asked for some applique and something with either poinsettias or Christmas roses. I had just found a book with a poinsettia pattern, so I went with it. I left off the veining in the leaves. If I put them on then where will she quilt? I also thought that it would help give it some dimension if they were added during quilting. I hope she likes it.

This one is for Carrie. She has 8 inch blocks and asked for trees with a touch of whimsy. I am not sure how whimsical it is, but I loved this green fabric. Again, she can embellish the tree how ever she sees fit during the quilting process.

I am now working on Caroll’s block. It has a design I am trying to translate into fabric. Wish me luck with that one. I do have a fall back block if I can’t make it work out like I want it to.

I also have a Halloween costume on the cutting table. We are attempting to make a water fairy costume in the vein of Tinkerbelle & her fairy friends. Yeah, I am nuts.

Here is the next installment of the Christmas version of the Around the World Quilting Bee.

The Little Miss has been known to help me when I am shopping at the fabric store.  I usually let her pick a fat quarter or some little craft out of the dollar bin. This snowman print is one of her finds. I wasn’t sure what I would do with it at the time she picked them out last fall. I thought I might make Nanna some coasters or something since she has quite the collection of snowmen.

It has since found a home in Trashalou’s block. The background of this block is covered in silver sparkles. I wasn’t sure if they would hold on for the long haul, but they made it through the pre-wash, so I have hopes they may last a few more. The light blue pieces are actually dimensional. They are squares that have been folded into quarters and then have the two raw edges sewn into the seams. It is kind of a fun element to add. It also makes this block a little different than the other Christmas Star block that Trash has in her collection of blocks.

Her quilt is now winging it’s way to San Jose. I am awaiting the next batch.

This is the last block I have to make for the original Around the World Quilting Bee.

I made Jane a variation of a Hidden Star block called Barrel Jump. She loves pink and this said “Happy Summer” to me. It has one more stop before it heads home to her.

I received my quilt back about three weeks ago.I have had a chance to flip through the blocks and admire the handy work, but not much else. I am looking forward to laying them out and deciding on a final layout. I am short a few blocks since a few ladies dropped out. I may make a couple to replace them or who knows. Sadly, I probably won’t get to finish it until September or early October. That is how personal projects seem to go for me.

I have made some more blocks for the Christmas version of the Around the World Quilting Bee. It seems like more ladies have special requests this go around.

These are the Fat Cats by Darlene Zimmerman. She has a cute Dresden type template that you make these from. I found it on a clearance sale and planned to make a kid quilt with it. Tanya wanted a place mat and the other idea I had was not working, space wise. So this is her place mat from me. She wanted us to use some of the owl fabric in the “block”, so he became a cat toy.

Brioni is also making a set of place mats. She asked us to each make a 6″ tree block. My guess is that she will put several of them together to make the place mats.

Katy asked for red & white pinwheels or stars. I made this dutchman’s puzzle for her. The large red swirls reminded me of looking at a snowflake under a microscope.

Maria also asked for red & white blocks. This one is called Gretsky and I found this great peppermint print. I hope she likes it.

I have one more quilt here to work on for the Christmas swap and then Jane’s block for the original ATWQB. Hers is the last one I have to do for that. I finally received my quilt back. I’ll get photos of it one day and post them so you can see what it looks like all together.

I had so much fun with the first one that I decided to sign up or the Christmas version. My block is another 12 inch block. This one is called Christmas Star. I used a cute Rudolph the Reindeer print and some red, green, and white prints to construct it. I am hoping that everybody will have fun making the blocks in whatever style they want.

I am expecting my original ATWQB quilt and Jane’s blocks to arrive soon. They are in Oakland, CA with Nann. With the last swap, Dionne was my “send to” and therefore the last persons quilt I was supposed make. This swap I am her “send to”, so I made the first block in her quilt. For two days I had both of her quilts on my cutting table.

I made her a Christmas Star block too. She wanted a 12 inch block with a border of fabric that she provided. It turned out very pretty.

I have also received Jen’s quilt. She is from Ontario, Canada. She told us that she isn’t so much into the traditional Christmas colors, but preferred the silver, blue and purple colors. Jen provided us with some beautiful fabrics to work into our blocks however we wanted. I had seen a block pattern I thought would go well with her starter block and had already picked out the fabrics for it. It didn’t take too much effort to work a piece of one of her fabrics into the pattern.

This is Jen’s Winter Spy Glass block.

I have Tanya’s place mat blocks now. I have several ideas for that one. Now I just have to see if I can make them look like the pictures I have in my head!

These are the last blocks in the Around the World Quilting Bee for Dionne’s quilt. I have one more set to make for Jane (23) and that swap will be over. I have kept the blocks numbered in their original order. It was the way I could keep track of whose had been done. When I got the big batch just before Christmas it was the best way to prioritize the quilts.


Dionnne wanted us to make her a house/cottage for her quilt. I found this fun coffee quilting fabric and thought that she had to have a coffee house since we both live in the Seattle area. I love these stick figure kids. I picked the one with the dog because people around here bring their dogs everywhere. I am NOT talking about the service dogs either. These are just regular dogs in irregular places. Her son thought it looked like him and his dog, Jake. So this is Jake’s Java Joint.

The second block is another version of a farm block. With this one I painted the animals directly onto the fabric instead of a separate piece that I had to then stitch down. My applique skills are far from expert, so this method looked better in the end. I did stitch in the weathervane’s tail feathers!

Some of these blocks have been in the works for quite some time. Everyone posted photos of their original blocks on the Flickr group page. From there, we have had some basis to start our musings on fabrics and patterns.

Caroll’s starter block had fun & whimsy written all over it from the get go. Who can be sad when looking at those cute sunshines in the Twisted Sister pinwheel pattern?

Some of my travels this summer and fall took me to fabric & quilt shops way out of my normal home range. That is how I found the great grass fabric I used in the farm block and this adorable Ladybug print. When I saw the Ladies, I knew I had to work them into Caroll’s block. I bought enough to catch each one of the different lines of ladybugs on parade. I have turned that into a block I am going to call Ladybug’s Picnic. It is a variation in the Square Dance block.

Her other block is made from one of my favorite pieces of fabric from the late 80′s or very early 90′s. I have every intention of making a Raggedy Anne dress with the rest, complete with the snowy white pinafore and bloomers. I have no idea why I like the blue stripes with the cutsie little heart flowers so much, but I do. I mixed it with a soft blue marble, and white with a mint green pinstripe. Soft and sweet. It is a variation of a variation on a Sister’s Choice block.

Her quilt is going to be very cute when it is all finished.

This is a bit of a jump backwards in the numbers, but the quilt just arrived way out of order. It still has a long way to go before it arrives back home to Katy in the UK, so I slipped it in before the other two I had here which are really close to being done.

This block is similar to her starter block. She sent us a link to a tutorial for some cottages at Freda’s Hive. They are really cute, and really simple to make. The hardest part is choosing your fabrics.

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This block is the same size as the cottage blocks but is obviously a bit different. I thought she needed a farm in her little community. I started working on the design as soon as I saw her original block. I had some time without a steady stream of ATWQB blocks and would work on it then. The goats are representatives of the ones we raise here. The chicken weather vane is a nod to my husband’s small flock of hens.

These will be off in the mail on Monday. I have Caroll’s quilt out and am planning the fabrics for her blocks now.

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