Thursday, July 30, 2009

American Idol Quilters

If three quilters left home early in the morning to go all the way across the state to see the American Idol Tour, and had directions to stop at two really big quilt shops (one going, one coming home), what would they need? it is:

At one time these were HOT NOW!

Ms. DeLuna is a Major Addicted American Idol Fan, and her favorite this year was Adam Lambert.
I am a Very Regular Viewer, and my favorite was also Adam Lambert.
Cherry-Cherry doesn't give a hoot about any of that, but had never been to Rainbow's End. And she does like music.
So off we went, with a big Thank-You! to Deluna's family for refusing to use their tickets!

It is not a woodchuck, nor is it chucking far as I know

Many cars have mascots, and Deluna's is no exception. She didn't think I'd include the picture in my blog, but once I started with the doughnuts, there was no turning back.
Fortunately for you Dear Readers I am rather lax at photo-journaling an entire trip.
You will have to just take my word about the restroom at a gas station where the TP rolls were actually chained to the wall. It had really heavy duty links.

We enjoyed shopping & lunch at the Suwanee Valley Quilt Shoppe in Trenton (details in the next post!) and arrived in Tampa (Ybor City, also known as "Cigar City") in time to freshen up before the show. They have a great street car system there, so we rode over to the Forum by rail.
The St. Pete Times Forum...almost ready to rock!

They play hockey here, but I don't know much about that. This area was cordonned off after the show for the Meet & Greet. The American Idols all have some serious fans, but especially Adam, and, of course, Kris Allen, the guy who actually won.

Better up here than down on the floor! What a view!

Deluna and I are sort of theatre geeks, and loved these seats at stage left where we could see all the back-up musicians and roadies making things happen at the right time. The black curvy thing is a string of speakers, and right below that is a metal rigging where the spotlights are. Right before the show started, a couple guys climbed up rope ladders to sit on that rigging and work the personal spots by hand! Incredible!
There was a huge trap door in the front part of the stage where pianos and singers came and went as needed. It was fun to see that...the people in front would just see the effect of things appearing suddenly.
We may have been up near the "nose bleed" section, but the first row there is great...nothing gets in the way! Deluna brought some really wonderful binoculars, too, so we could get fabulous views of each person....
even though for some reason all the guys seemed to have Faux-hawk styles, and Megan Joy's hair had been done by placing her finger in a lightsocket.
When Deluna asked the person sitting next to her who was her favorite Idol, she said, "Adam!... is there anybody else?"
Here's Our Boy:
He did a fabulous set starting with "Whole Lotta Love", my favorite of his numbers "Mad World", and a David Bowie tribute medley.
We were sorry he didn't make it out to the Meet & Greet after the show, but he was not feeling well. You would not have known it from his performance (unless you have a great ear for music...this guy can handle anything).
That was fun! C-C had a great time, too.
Sorry if you don't like American Idol, etc etc.
I will be covering the quilt shops and a small quilt show (yes, a real suprise!) in the next two posts. Now for those I took lots of pictures!
I know what's really important!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Quilters Flea Market & Tag Sale, part 3

Time for the sale to begin!
The crafters came in and filled their spaces, cleverly arranging tables into attractive sales spaces.

There were childern's items, woodworking crafts, and lots of beautiful jewelry.
Here is a really colorful display:

Time to get ready for wool applique! I believe it will be the guild's program for September, and a chance for me to make a small item.
I love this sort of thing, yet never get a project together.
Never miss an opportunity to sell raffle tickets, either!
This year's quilt has such sparkly clean primary colors, everyone just has to get some chances.
Tip for Quilt Photogs: remember to remove all plasctic containers and lids before snapping the picture!
Really, it's amazing how many times a serious photo is ruined because your eye has "edited out" a distraction. It's important to look carefully all around the edge of the quilt before snapping the shutter. (OK, do as I say, not as I do!)
It's also good to be sure you are directly straight in front of the quilt.

Let's go see Cherry Cherry's table!
She had really cute little the kind you need for inside your purse!...and also some great bags made to hold the long mini-irons that work so well in classes.
Sorry I didn't get a shot of the little art quilts in the back. They are little gems!
Meanwhile, back at the BGPC table, the assorted stuff was moving slowly and I did have to take a lot home.
TC has been on a clean-out lately and had the best bargains. This Bow Tie quilt? It's a tied Tie! But it was only$5! And the featherweight sitting atop it was going for $200...complete with case, bobbins, & lots of attachments (not to mention the booklet).
Nobody purchased that (contact me if you are interested!) but the green machine did only $20 (eat your heart out, eBayers!) It's an Elna Supermatic, with all the fancy stitch discs those 50's machines used to have! Again, good running condition and all the attachments, which includes a knee lift bar and the case slides up around the free arm to make a flat sewing surface! All those features we are looking for today were ahead of their time for this machine.

How do I know so much about it? I have an Elna Grasshopper, which is even brighter green, and is the "featherweight" version of the Supermatic!
I wouldn't let that go for 10x the price this machine got...a very lucky & astute person knew exactly what she was getting....a giant bargain!

Well, that's how it goes at the yard sale/ tag sale/etc. We can only assume everyone was happy with their transactions, and wish there might have been even more!

For those who didn't sell quilts, we have more opportunities yet.
QuiltFest (September 24--26) has a sale area for the members, and if you are in the market for a quilt, you will not find a greater display!
Before that, on August 17 at our general meeting, the All Stars will show off what they are selling so guild members can get first look.
Oh, yes...those matching Tulip Quilts and the brown Log Cabin you saw in the last post have gone on to lucky homes already!

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Quilters' Flea Market & Tag Sale, part 2

Fund-raising time for the guild usually involves cleaning out the sewing room/studio, and this year's event included renting table space to non-member crafters as well!
With two connecting rooms available, on became the Flea Market and the other for you see the set-up in progress:

Guild members who came to help got first choice of spaces and were able to get everything ready on Friday. The remaining people came at 7 AM on Saturday before the sale.

Some of the All Stars are experienced crafters and had lots of items, plus the equipment to make a professional display.

The rest just used tables or were trying to do heavy-duty stash-reduction!
Above are two members who put their tables together...they looked like they were setting up a real shop, with loads of fabric, gadgets and patterns. It was very attractive, and they sold enough to go to Paducah next year!
Others, such as the booth below, just piled as much on as "artistically" as possible:
Yes, that's the BGPC table, yours truly as the set-up, sales and take down crew!
I am really glad I did not have to do all that first thing in the morning!

The guild had plenty of donations for its own double table space, plus a few quilts along the wall.
The Plan: everything would go half-price at the last 1/2 hour, and anything left (except fabric we can use for charity projects) would be bagged up and taken to Goodwill!
Of course there was a bake sale, too! It was handled by Rita, who I trust had the self control to be in such close proximity to those goodies for an extended period of time.
Once all was in place, and thanks to several family members who provided much-needed muscle, we all went home to spend a sleepless night. It seems nobody can get a good sleep when they know they have to get up early!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Quilters Flea Market & Tag Sale, part 1

It's time for a quilt guild fund-raiser, and what could be better than a sale of quilt/ craft/sewing related items?
This will be tomorrow, a Saturday, so the public can come and help us out with a few dollars...though it is true, we quilters are usually our best customers! I know we'll making lots of pre-sale sales as we get things set up today.
(Local friends: it's 1.5 miles south of I-295 on San Jose Blvd!8 am to 2 pm).

As soon as something like this is announced I start getting "bring the van" phone calls!

Much of this came from someone's dear-departed family member...when I get that call, I just take everything and sort it out myself. If you are not a quilter/crafter, etc. you just cannot cope with all the remains of a sewing room.
Has this changed my feelings about how much "stuff" I will leave behind?
Heck, no!

Let's take a closer peek...I know you want to see what's in there... may have to wait for Part 2 of this post!
Do note on the left side there, I am bringing all my collection of gift bags ("too pretty to throw away!") and will use them to bag any sales I am making. Just a nice bonus, and a win-win.
I may not be getting rid of tons of my own stuff, but occaisionally I do have to whittle out some roon for new acquisions!

Tables were rented out to various people for this sale. I have a table for the combined goods of the BGPC, and the guild is having it's own table of donated items.

Crafters were invited to sell their creations, and we ended up with more of them than people having tag sales!
(Don't you just love all the names for these sort of events? Tag sales, yard sale, garage sale, flea market...I like the English version "jumble sale"....very descriptive of the mess involved! But what treasures to be found!) (dangerous territory for a pack rat such as myself...)
The crafters will be in a large separate room, so their goods will make a nicer showing than in with the assorted junk. Or perhaps "junque"!

And who has a craft table but our very own Cherry-Cherry! I'll get a pic of it in all it's glory with the special small bags she made.
Meanwhile, here's a photo of one of many quilts she'll also be offering.

Fun fun fun!

And now to head over to the church building where the sale will be... set up today, sale tomorrow!

Friday, July 17, 2009

The Great Pacific NorthWest

Now that we've all had a fabric fix, I'd like to share some of my trip with you.
This won't be very "quilty" but there are some pretty pictures!
And somewhere in here will be that PIE I mentioned yesterday!

After leaving the Searttle aiport, renting the car and having some lunch, we needed coffee!
Seen one Starbuck's, seen 'em all...though I have to say, at 3:00 on a Tuesday afternoon outside any urban area, this place was packed with coffee lovers and had a real coffee house feel.
Someday I will do a whole photo-shoot of all the little coffee places, like drive-through huts, that pop up everywhere across the Washington landscape...even out in the country. I asked if there was a generic term for them, and was told they all are just known by their names: AutoMocha, Jeanne's Beans, etc.

The Pacific NorthWest is known for rain, so here was our first-day view.
Then the remaining days were more like this:

And this:

Now where do you get a view like that?
Why, from here, of course:

This may be the greatest deck in the entire world, especially when it's filled with about 40 friends, and the grill is going!

There is nothing like the fabulous fruit this time of year, and even in the local grocery (Haggens) I couldn't resist a photo of my favorite (and totally unavailable fresh in Florida!):

Yes! It is rhubarb!
And, though many people mix it with strawberries, it makes the World's Best PIE:

This PIE is so good, it has magical healing powers.
It could just about make you cry with pure, unbelievable joy.
Thank you, Maureen.

Fot those who do not appreciate rhubarb ( I love you all the same), here is the other fruit of earthly delight....

Could life be just a bowl of cherries?
And why would anyone say "just"?
There are beautiful dark red Bing cherries.....

And there are the incredibley lovely Rainer cherries with their rosy yellow & red colors....

We picked bowls and bowls of cherries for four days and still you could walk out under the trees and see this site...

The sunlight filtering through the green leaves, the juicy cherries all within easy reach!


I know you can't see them, but there are snow capped mountains in the far distance, the Cascades.
I hope you enjoyed this bit of my PNW time....
now I'm back home in flat, hot & humid Florida. Yet every place does have its charms....
and this IS where my stash resides!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Over the Rainbow quilt shop & farm!

No matter where I go, there is usually fabric to be found...and what a find this was!
Over the Rainbow is an Internet business, but if you're going to be in the Camano Island area (about an hour north of Seattle, WA) and give her a call, Laura Van Divier may tell you it's fine to come on over to the farm and visit the barn-full of fabric...not to mention the assortment of alpacas and other animals!

Park right in front and come on in the barn at the end of the driveway!

With a wedding only two weeks away, Laura was quite busy, as was the staff of three (or more?) who were whacking away at bolt after bolt, filling orders and stacking the bags to be mailed.
We were given free rein of the barn and loft. The fabric is organized according to manufactor, and as you can see, this IS a work place, not the cute LQS....
but oh, what a fabulous amount of fabric!
The shelves in the center are filled with orders bagged and ready to go out

These ladies all know where everything is, and requested that if we pulled a bolt out to get a better look, please just lean it against the shelf, and they would put it back!
Yes, this place is organized like a library, and I had no desire to mess up the system!
That's my purse and bag o' fabric on the cutting table
...never finished shopping until I'm in the car!

I wish there had been more time to visit, but Laura was quite involved in getting the day's work done so she could move on to family matters. That's what running a business is all about!
Yet, small world that it is, I discovered she is good friends with Jo H., mother (and often fellow fabric shopper) of the non-quilter friend I was visiting!
(hey, Jo! How about that trip we took to the Vermont Quilt Festival back when you lived on that side of the country????)
Were you looking for some fruit fabric???
On this trip I had long-time friend Sandy and her beautiful daughter Martha with me, both avid fabricholics of the theatre, clothing & crafting kind. They were digging up some interesting colors & patterns.

Surely there is some coffee fabric in there...

I was looking for...and found...some coffee inspired pieces towards the kitchen curtains for my sister. Note that is "towards", meaning I don't know exactly what I'm going to do yet!
But what you really want to know is, what did I buy?
Well, here it is:
Red Batik! Gotta get some whenever I see a good nice bright one.

Purple batik! Because I LOVE it!

Gotta have the Black & Whites, too. This piece and the next three are Kaufman's "Day & Night".These sunflowers want to be loved by the Inktense pencils, don't you think???

This is so beautiful, I was truly amazed. The leaves are about 3", so it is a very large print.

I like a B&W print that reads mostly one or the other...this is a yummy black with banana leaves.

"Jumpin' Java" by Clothworks has a great little gold-ish swirl all through the background.

Moda has to be producing the greatest number of popular fabric lines right now!
Here's a panel from their "Bistro" line, and below is coffee cups from the same line:These have a very interesting wooden feeling!

What is life without dessert....especially PIE? This put me in mind of the BGPC!
Stay tuned for the next post, when I will show a picture of The Best Pie Ever as it was being made!
It's always time for cherry fabric! Over the Rainbow had more than I have ever seen, and I had to go with just a few, despite an incredible range of colorways! The one above is from Mary Engelbreit's "Recipe for Friendship". It is different from a similar one several years ago. I would highly reccommenbd checking into this line if you are a Cherry Lover!

Yes, there's is Moda's "Berry Delicious" and last but not quite least is....

Moda's "Oh-Cherry-Oh", my favorite being this one with tiny teal dots...I took the end of the bolt!
I would like to show you the jellyroll I bought, because it has all the Oh-Cherry-Oh prints, but I didn't get a picture before I gave it away...I bet you can guess who got it!

Do visit (please note NO "the" in the address!). You'll love Laura's huge fabric selection, the newsletter with tales of the animals on the farm, and especially her sales and fair shipping policies!
I hope to visit again some day and get a tour of all the livestock & various animal friends.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Home Again & Stories to Tell!

I'm finally getting caught up after being here: The best place in the world to drink coffee
...or at least the place where coffee is available everywhere!

And here:

Not too bad for the back yard view!

And here:

Don't wait for my post! Visit Over the Rainbow now!

And while I was out there I really enjoyed:

Eat your heart out, CherryCherry! These are some fine Rainers.

I'll be writing about all this and more very soon!