Wednesday, February 29, 2012

And the Winners Are......

Hi, all!

I promised you winners today - my daughter's 7th birthday (but she's 28!) - and here they are!

The winner of the book is Cathy, who linked up her Roll Roll Cotton Boll finish - #28 in the links down below - you really should check it out if you haven't already!

And the two winners of a table runner each are:

Linda, who said....

Linda said...

I would love to win the book. I have leftover charms from another project that I could use for the table runner.
February 24, 2012 7:29 PM
and Paula, who said...

 Paula said...

WOW! The more I read about this book and see projects done, the more I want it. Thanks for sharing and the giveaway.
February 24, 2012 9:17 AM
I've e-mailed all of the winners - but if you won and you haven't received an e-mail from me, you can e-mail me directly at  Thanks to everyone who entered and those who linked up - I'm still working my way through all those linkies handing out Whoop Whoops!  What fun!!



Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Make-A-List Monday #84! Moving Right Along....

Hi, all!

I was so busy yesterday I completely forgot to do my Make-A-List thing!!  But I did well on last week's list, so I definitely want to share, and I need to make a new list to keep me on track this week - so here goes!

Here's last week's recap...

1.  Finish binding on the skateboarding quilt.
Done!  It's finished and delivered...

2.  Piece the stars top.
Done!  And it's ready for binding, too - 
I'll show pics of this one on Wednesday.

3.  Quilt the charms squares mini quilt.
Done!  These two pretties are part of a giveaway - 
and there's still time to enter!  
Check out this blogpost
winners will be drawn  Wednesday 2/29!

4. Quilt the stars top.
Done!  Like I said earlier, I'll be showing this one
 on Wednesday...

5.  Start working on Hands2Help 2012!
Done!  I hope you'll check out this past Sunday's 
blogpost for some info about this year's Challenge, 
and give me some feedback!!
Pick up the new button for your blog, too!!

So that's what happened with last week's list.  Plus I quilted six more quilts (three of them yesterday, which is why I forgot to do my blogpost!) so I've got plenty to do this week...

1.  Bind those seven quilts.

2.  Work on a special gift quilt.

3.  Work on Hands2Help 2012.

4.  Finish checking out everyone's Whoop Whoops!!

That doesn't look like a lot, but the gift quilt needs to be finished by Sunday, so I've got to devote all my time to it, as soon as I get those seven quilts bound.  I think I'm going to check out AmandaJean's machine binding tutorial - I really like hand binding but seven quilts!!  Yikes!!  Wish me luck...

So now - - - - what are you working on this week?



Sunday, February 26, 2012

Thinking About Hands2Help 2012....

“What does love look like? 
It has the hands to help others. 
It has the feet to hasten to the poor and needy. 
It has eyes to see misery and want. 
It has the ears to hear the sighs and sorrows of men. 
That is what love looks like.”

Hi, all!

It's time to start thinking about Hands2Help again!  If you aren't familiar with Hands2Help, this will be the second year for this charity quilt challenge.  Last year, 47 quilters made 61 quilts that were sent to Judi of Green Fairy Quilts.  Judi and her husband Clint took those quilts to Romania to be distributed to orphans there, along with school supplies and food.  

H2H front

Judi tells me that they still have enough quilts left over from last year (because they are limited on how many they can take over with them) that she doesn't need any more this year.  So that means that we will have a new charity to donate our quilts to this year.  I'm still working out the details but I believe we will have two charity choices this year, giving us more options for variety in our quilts.

H2H Cabin by Robyn Allen

Because I'm trying to make Hands2Help better this year than it was last year, I need some feedback from you!  If you could answer a few questions for me in your comment, it can go a long way to making this a great experience for everyone.

Barb's H2H Quilt

1.  Would you rather work out of your own stash, or swap fabric like we did last year?

Front of H2H quilt

2.  If you are an international (non-US) blogger, would you be more likely to participate if you could ship your flimsy and backing only (I would see that it gets quilted here in the States) to save on postage?

Finished!  H2H Charity Quilt done!

3.  Would you be interested in seeing guest bloggers featuring simple designs that can be used for your quilt(s)?

Rita Penner's H2H Quilt

4.  What suggestions do you have to make the experience better?  (Remember, there are no crazy ideas - just crazy quilters!)


I'm so looking forward to this, and hope we'll have lots of participants again this year!  Sundays on my blog will be dedicated to the Hands2Help Charity Quilt Challenge from now until it's over, and I'm hoping to have the timeline, guidelines, and sponsor list up in the next couple of weeks.  


By the way, the beautiful quilts pictured above are just a few of the quilts that were donated as part of the Hands2Help Charity Quilt Challenge 2011, along with many others you can see here on Flickr.  

So please take a few minutes, leave a comment with some answers to help me plan a great challenge, and let me know if you plan to participate this year, too!  You don't have to have a blog to participate, but it is important that I be able to reach you - so if you don't have a blog, leave your e-mail address in your comment or e-mail me directly at if you don't like leaving your e-mail out in public.  Just FYI - if you don't hear back from me when you comment, you are a no-reply blogger and I don't have a way to reach you!

I hope you're as excited as I am!!



PS:  If you are interested in sponsoring this challenge, 
or in being a guest blogger, 
please e-mail me at!!

Oh yeah - you can pick up the button for your blog 
up there in the upper right sidebar!!
Help spread the word!!

Friday, February 24, 2012

Can I get a Whoop-Whoop?? A Book Review and a Giveaway!!

Hi, all!

I hope your weather was as beautiful yesterday for you as ours was - we had brilliant sunshine and temperatures near 80!  Fortunately, I finished up my sewing early in the day so I could spend some time outside with my granddaughter and enjoy the gorgeous day!!

A few weeks ago, I was contacted by Mary Etherington of Country Threads.  She asked me if I would be willing to participate in a blog tour for her new book, Back To Charm School, and I was really excited to say yes!  This is my first blog tour, but I hope it won't be my last.  

This is a really nice book - well written, clear instructions, lovely photographs and great designs!  Here are a few of my favorites...

I love this little bow tie quilt, cheerfully called "Better to be overdressed than underdressed"...

And take a look at this amazing 15" x 19" quilt - I've never been tempted by mini's before, but this one might make me change my mind!

There's a really simple pattern that can become either a lap quilt or a tree skirt in the book...

...and this adorable 15" x 24" postage stamp quilt!  Simple but very effective!!

Each design comes with alternative fabric requirements if you don't have charm packs to use up.  The fabric requirements listed with each pattern are generous - which to me is a good thing, because if you mis-cut, you don't want to have to go back out to the store to buy more fabric!  There is a little leeway in the amounts they suggest using.  I also like these designs because I can see how they could easily be translated into larger quilts, simply by using layer cakes instead of charm packs, or by increasing the number of blocks.  

Here's the design that caught my eye from the book... I grabbed a charm pack of Reunion by Sweetwater and got cutting!  This particular design will make two 12" x 24" table runners from half a charm pack, so it's a really good design for using up those tail ends of charm packs you might have lying around.  Here's what I came up with...

These were fun to make, and worked up really quickly!  What a great gift idea when you need something in a hurry....

And did I mention a giveaway?  Seems like I did!  Well, Mary sent along a second copy of the book, signed by the authors, for me to give away, AND I'm going to give away both of the table toppers I made, since I have enough fabric left to make two more for me!

So how do you enter?  Leave a comment on this post to be entered in the giveaway.   For an extra entry, link up with our Whoop Whoop party!  Show off what you've been working on this week!!  I'll draw three winners on Wednesday, February 29th - it's my daughter's 7th birthday (she'll be 28!) and it will be fun to announce the winners in celebration of her day!

OK, folks!

It's time to link up!

What have YOU been working on this week?

We all want to cheer you on - 

So show it off!!

Come and get your Whoop Whoop!!
(Because of the giveaway, the linky party
will remain open until Tuesday 2/28 at midnight...)
(PS If you have trouble linking up, leave a comment
with the URL address you want to link and I'll
do it for you!)



Wednesday, February 22, 2012

What's Cookin' at The Sweatshop, Week #22 - It Just Keeps Rolling Along...

Hi, all!

Well, another week has passed, and more quilts have been created and given to folks in need!  Here's what we worked on this week...

Pam made this beautiful batik quilt, which went to a gentleman whose cancer has returned.  He will be undergoing more treatment to try to get it under control.

Look at those beautiful fabrics!

And doesn't Pam do nice backs?  Always a treat for the eyes!!


And remember this sneak peek from earlier this week?  Here's the finished quilt...

Marsha pieced this quilt, which is going to a high school sophomore who has a brain tumor.  Great skateboarding themed fabric and bright colors - we hope this brings him some comfort and cheer!

And our final quilt this week is such a happy quilt, for a happy occasion...

A new baby!  A sweet little girl, born just last week.  The kit for this quilt was donated to us (I think this is right!) by KatieQ, who blogs over at Katie's Salt Marsh Path. Joanna took the kit and put it together.  It's lovely soft flannel...

...and just look at those adorable ballerina bears!  Aren't they cute?

So that's what we've been working on this week!  And it just keeps rolling along - there are six more quilts in the works right now!

Stay tuned, too, for more information on Hands2Help 2012.  I've started working out the details for this year's charity challenge and should be getting that info out to everyone soon!  If you aren't familiar with the challenge and want to see what we did last year, you can click on the tab at the top of my blog.



PS - Remember to check back here Friday for a book review and giveaway!  And to link up your week's accomplishments for a little whoop whoop!!

Monday, February 20, 2012

Make-A-List Monday #83! Quilts and Progress!

Hi, all!

Well, it's been a very productive week here - about time!!  This will be a long post, so let's get right to last week's list....

1.  Quilt the skateboarding quilt.
Done!  And I'm working on the binding right now...

2.  Quilt a man's quilt for the ministry.
Done!  Pam pieced this lovely top, I quilted and bound it... (More pics to come on Wednesday's ministry update!)

3.  Piece a stars quilt for the ministry.
In progress - up on the design wall, and hopefully I'll get it sewn together tomorrow...

Looking at this, I'm seeing some changes I want to make...

4.  Piece a charm squares mini quilt for a special project.
Pieced - now I just need to get it quilted! (More on this special project below...)

5.  Put together more kits for the ministry.
Done!  And snatched up by ministry members before I could take a picture!  But I did some by Amy Smart's Easy Strawberry Fields Bricks Quilt design, some others by Amanda Jean Nyberg's Stacked Coins Baby Quilt design, and a few that will make a quilt similar to these great quilts by Rita over at Red  Pepper Quilts!

And if you saw my blog last week, you know that I have been on a re-organizing kick - so here's what I managed to get done on that front...

The storage shelves in their final position
 (I had to move the quilt frame a little to make that back shelf work there...)

New shelves in that closet make it a lot more useful!

And maybe you remember this pic of my batting storage system  futon?
Well, here's what it looks like now!

And that missing chair?

Not missing any more!
And I added in a small hanging section to keep my personal UFOs organized and in sight - so hopefully I'll get to them someday!!

Still a work in progress, but getting there!
So that's what I did last week!  And on tap for this week....

1.  Finish binding on the skateboarding quilt.

2.  Piece the stars top.

3.  Quilt the charms squares mini quilt.

4. Quilt the stars top.

5.  Start working on Hands2Help 2012!

OK, that's enough for one week - because I've also been asked to do one day of a blog hop for a new book, Back to Charm School! 

 I'm really excited to be doing this, and I hope you'll come back on Friday to see what I've found in this neat book!  I've got a signed copy of the book to give away, and also a couple of other surprises, so come back Friday, link up your achievements for the week for a whoop whoop, and join in the giveaway fun!!  And to get extra chances to win a copy of this great book, check out the other stops on the blog hop this week...

     2-20        Maureen Baly                
     2-20        Paulette Doyle               
      2-21        Lori DeJarnatt                
      2-21        Jo Kramer                      
     2-22        Sherri McConell             
     2-22        Karen Griska                  
     2-23        Julie Winkler                  
     2-24        Sarah Craig                    
     2-24        Suzanne Melkoski          
     2-25        Michelle Marr                 
     2-25        Pat Wys                         

So all in all, another busy week!  Wish me luck!  What are you working on this week?