Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Giveaway winner of Forget Me Knot

The winner of Mary Mark's new quilting mystery, Forget Me Knot, is Roz! Congratulations to Roz!
We have been  in touch and the publisher will be sending her a copy.

Thanks to all who read the review and entered the giveaway. And, to all who bought it for their Kindles and other mobile devices. Hey, a 'real' book is a mobile device, too!

Enjoy,

Debbie


Monday, January 6, 2014

Quilt Mystery Book Review and Giveaway



January 7, 2014 is the big day for new quilting mystery writer Mary Marks. That's the day her first mystery, Forget Me Knot, is due to come out.



Forget Me Knot is the first of a new series. It was a finalist in a national writing competition in 2011.



FORGET ME KNOT is the adventure of Martha Rose, a sassy, sarcastic woman of a certain age and her two quilting friends Lucy and Birdie. The trio discovers the corpse of another quilter and days later the victim’s prize winning quilt is stolen. Martha is enlisted to draw on her knowledge of quilting to decode the secret messages the victim left behind. But the deeper she digs, the closer the killer gets to stopping Martha permanently.



“Mary Marks had me on pins and needles and wanting to wrap myself up in a warm quilt while reading her cozy debut!”

—Lee Hollis, author of Death of a Chocoholic



“Mary Marks has stitched together a very clever plot with a cast of engaging characters in this funny, fast-paced debut mystery. I loved Martha Rose and her posse of crime-solving quilters and can’t wait to read what they’re up to next!”

—Laura Levine, author of Killing Cupid


Mary Marks became an award-winning quilter after an early retirement from her job in administration on the campus of the University of California Los Angeles. After twelve years of sewing twenty four/seven, she came up for a breath and started writing about some of the nearly one hundred quilts she’d created.      Read more about Mary here.



I do a lot of my reading while walking on a treadmill. How much time I spend on the treadmill is often related to how good my reading material is. I got a lot of steps in while reading the advance copy of Forget Me Knot! It was a difficult book to put down!



So, the title of this post says Giveaway, right? Kensington Publishing Corp. has generously offered to send a copy of Mary Mark's Forget Me Knot to one lucky winner. Just leave a comment at the end of this post by midnight EST Sunday, January 12. (That's midnight between the 12th and 13th.) Please be sure I have a way to contact you. Either by having your email address in your blogger profile or by leaving your email address in the comment.



If you write about this giveaway on your blog, and leave a second comment with a link to your blog post, you can receive a second entry into the contest.



If you don't want to wait, you can order Forget Me Knot now from Amazon.



Leave a note of congratulations on Mary's Facebook page!



Good luck!

Debbie

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Winner of Quilters Blog Hop Party giveaway


The winner of the Quilt Show subscription and the Carol Doak DVD and the yarn pieces is Deb, who said:
 
Well, I don't know how to paper piece so a dvd would be great! debgirotti at gmail dot com"

Congratulations to Deb, who I have been in touch with by email!

FYI, Deb was the second one that random.org chose. The first one was a no-reply blogger who did not leave her email address in the comment. There were quite a few of those.

Thanks to everyone who visited, entered and became followers!

And, because I think every blog post should have a photo, I'll leave you with this one for the first night of Chanukah, tonight.
I wrote about the quilt here.


Happy Chanukah!

Debbie




Thursday, November 21, 2013

Quilters’ Blog Hop Party







Blog Hop Party with Give-Aways 
 
Giveaway is closed. Thanks to everyone who entered. Winner to be announced soon.


I really have to get back into the swing of things and write blog posts more often. This post, being a giveaway, will force me to write another post, next week, announcing the winner! Click on the Blog Hop logo above so see the huge list of other bloggers having giveaways.

If you've been a follower of mine for a while, then you've read the post where I give the excuse why I'm currently not doing much quilting. Just to let you know that I have started on the job and do feel the push to get it done, but it's still going to take a long time. In the meantime, I've been doing some knitting. Here's one of the things I just finished. I used Teddy's Wool Himalaya with the popular Wingspan pattern. I find working with rainbow colored yarn very relaxing and this was an easy pattern.


So, you've been waiting for the giveaway details.

I've been a member of The Quilt Show since their Day One. In fact, I was once told that I was the first one to sign up (how cool is that!) Recently, they provided every Star member (paid member) a gift certificate for a six month membership to give away to a friend. The certificate must be redeemed by December 31. I'm giving that away along with two other things. 

Within the clutter of my sewing room, I seem to have acquired two copies of "Carol Doak Teaches You To Paper Piece DVD". Lucky for one of you.


I'm adding in a bunch of one yard cuts of about 30 different yarns. I have often used these yarns for embellishment by couching. Some people use them for scrapbooking. I've also got another project, a knitting one, that I'm using these yarns for. I'll show it to you one of these days. 



I might be adding another one or two things in before the end of the giveaway.

There's a catch about the Quilt Show gift certificate. It can only be used by Basic (or new) members and not by Star (already paid) members. If you are the winner and you are a Star member of The Quilt Show already, I can send you the other prizes and choose another winner for the certificate, or you can choose to pass it on to a friend of yours.

Leave a comment on this post and I'll be having the Random guy choose a winner after the US EST midnight between November 26 and November 27. That's seven in the morning of the 27th for me. If you do not have a blogger profile with an email address associated with it, then you must put your email address in your comment. I must be able to email the winner or I will choose another winner.

The fifth anniversary of this blog is coming up in early January and I hope to have a giveaway then to celebrate. So, please put me in your blog reader, or however it is that you keep up with blog reading. There are just so many different options these days!

Enjoy!

Debbie

Friday, October 25, 2013

It's Blogger’s Quilt Festival Time!

AmysCreativeSide

After participating a bunch of times in the Blogger's Quilt Festival, hosted by Amy Ellis of Amy's Creative Side, I took a couple of years off. I decided I couldn't stay away any longer!

Many thanks to Amy for gathering hundreds of quilters together to show some of their favorite quilts all in one place. Click on the logo above for a list of all the participating quilter bloggers.

I few years ago I joined a quilt challenge group called Fast Friday Fabric Challenge but haven't kept up with it. I did manage to make a small quilt once for the challenge and wrote a post about it then.

Since it's been a while, I'd like to share it with all the new people attending the Blogger's Quilt Festival.


The two challenges that I combined in one piece was one challenge to use a single shape and the other one to use color fields. The piece is 8-1/2" x 11".

Hexagon's are my go-to shape when I design many of my projects. Some are still WIPs or UFOs. So, it's natural that my most recent project is made of hexagons!

I've been a follower of Geta Gramma's blog for a while. She does gorgeous work and makes wonderful patterns. She also makes a lot of things with hexagons. A few months ago she wrote a new pattern for a zippered pouch that has another pouch inside, called the "Twice as Nice".

I was coveting that pattern and through a little protexia (Hebrew slang for having connections), I was gifted with a copy of the pattern by Geta!

One side of the pouch I made with English Paper Piecing and the other side I made with Inklingo printed fabric. Hexagons, of course! Inklingo is used for all sorts of piecing, but mostly hand piecing. I chose to do it by machine and Inklingo made it soooo easy!



The fabric I used are hand dyes by Lunn Fabrics. I used to order PFD fabrics from them years ago when they still sold retail on their website. I got this as a free gift for ordering over a certain amount. It's my favorite color! 



The zippers are the color they are because that's what I had in the house. They were both already used zippers, of which I have a collection. I messed up a little by not making sure that the zippers go in the same direction.


Here are links to my posts in the past Festivals:

Blogger's Quilt Festival #1  April, 2009

Blogger's Quilt Festival #2  October, 2009

Blogger's Quilt Festival #3  May, 2010

Blogger's Quilt Festival #4  October, 2010 

Blogger's Quilt Festival #5  May, 2011

Enjoy!

Debbie

Sunday, October 20, 2013

How many scissors do you have?


Thearica of PigTales and Quilts has challenged us to show off our scissors collections. Ken's Sewing Center is allowing her to give away a pair of Gingher 7" Shears! Check out Thearica's scissors collection post with the giveaway (that ends tomorrow.)

First, the scissors that reside in my sewing room. 

These are my snips, always sitting under the sewing machine and are used all the time:

These are my fabric scissors. One Gingher and one Singer from when I first learned to sew, close to 45-50 years ago! The Singer used to be serrated. One day I brought them to a 'professional' sharpener. I told him to leave the serrated edge alone. I picked them up and the serrated edge had disappeared! He gave some excuse that you need to sharpen both edges together, or something like that.

These are the paper scissors that I use in the sewing room. They are very long and great for cutting patterns and such.


Other miscellaneous scissors in my sewing room. The ones on the right are pinking shears, also from when I first learned to sew. Remember when we used to pink all the seams in the garments? My grandfather was a tailor of men's suits and the second from the left was one of his large scissors. My mother has the other pair.


These are the scissors that I use for embroidery and hand piecing.



Thearica mentioned that she did not include her kitchen or bathroom scissors, so I will.

From the bathroom:

In the kitchen, the blunt ones are kept in the flatware drawer, used for opening up bags. Then there are the chicken shears and the paper and tape scissors in the computer desk (which is just off the kitchen.)

About a year and a half ago, my husband's grandmother passed away one month after her 100th birthday. She lived in the neighborhood and when they were cleaning out her apartment, among the many things that were brought here to my house was a box of old scissors. I never got around to trying them out yet. They need to be cleaned and have some rust to be sanded down.


I know there are several others around the house, but I didn't dig them up for photos. So, I estimate about close to 30 in total.

How many scissors do you have?

Enjoy!

Debbie

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

More light!


A few days ago, Kelly, from I Have A Notion, wrote about her new LED light strip for her sewing machine. So, I have to show mine, too!

A year or so ago, my son bought a roll of LED light strips. He made a long, six rows wide, light for over our stove. It's fantastically bright! He gave me the leftovers from the roll. and I mounted them on a piece of soft plastic. Then he connected the little strips, added a switch and a plug. I velcroed the lights under  the throat of the machine.

Result: Lots more light to sew with! What a difference! And, at a cost considerably less than the special sewing machine lights sold these days.




Enjoy!

Debbie

Monday, August 12, 2013

Miniature made during a busy, busy summer!


This summer has been very busy for us, with more to come. I'm so behind in blog reading and emails. Despite that, I managed to get a relaxing quilt related project going. It took me a whole month to make the top of this miniature.

Carol Doak, the queen of foundation paper piecing and the Carol Doak Quilting Yahoogroup, posted a free challenge pattern in early July. The Royal Miniature Star Challenge. All members of the group can download the pattern (and loads of other patterns) for free. The current cover photo for the group is of Carol's design for her pattern. The deadline for the challenge is August 15, but you'll still be able to download the pattern for quite some time after that.

It's been way too long since I made anything quilty. (I've got a few knitting projects to share one of these days.) It was time. 

One of the member's of our group, Mona, draws the patterns in EQ7 and shares it with the list. There is someone who draws it for Quilt Pro, too, but I have EQ7. I've never taken the time to really learn how to use EQ7. I used it to print out blocks of the pattern, in the original form and in two stretched sizes. (I couldn't just make the original design of the pattern!) Then I proceeded the old fashioned way. I cut up the blocks, arranged them, and glued them to paper. 


Then I scanned that and in Photoshop I whited out the extra lines.


 Then I colored it in.


I did make a very annoying mistake. I started the piecing using the patterns I printed on the printer paper instead of using the Carol Doak foundation paper. I was too lazy to start over again and I paid for it at the end in the HOURS it took me to take out the papers from the back. I don't think I will ever do that again!

Here is the finished approximately 9 1/2" square top.


The top was sitting on a black surface for this photo. I'm hoping that white batting and some quilting will camouflage the dark shadows. 

Enjoy!

Debbie



Friday, June 28, 2013

Just for fun and some stuff about blog readers



Just for fun, I entered the Quilt Gallery Show and Tell again this week. The theme is Paper Piecing. I'm showing a mini that I made several years ago using a Carol Doak block. I wrote about it on the blog in 2009. It's called Compass Celebration and it's 12 inches square. Go look at all the quilts and vote!


So, that's it - Google Reader is supposed to be going poof within three days. I'm still trying out several readers at the same time, trying to get them to work perfectly for me. Each one is missing something that I will miss from Google Reader. I'm certainly not a happy camper!

In the meantime, for those that use Bloglovin' and did not switch over all the blogs that they read, you can continue to follow me by clicking on the Bloglovin' button in the sidebar, right below the clock.

Enjoy!
Debbie

Friday, April 5, 2013

Quilting Gallery Show and Tell


Woah! I didn't realize it was almost three months since I posted last! And, no, I haven't been cleaning my sewing room during that time. Just a little bit. We did have the weeks of preparation before the week long Passover holiday and I survived the whole thing.

Quilters’ Show and Tell

I decided to enter a quilt into the Quilting Gallery's Show and Tell this week. The theme this week is Springtime Quilts and I entered my Spring - Aviv quilt. If you think it worthy, please vote for my quilt! You can get to the Show and Tell page here

I've written about this quilt previously for the Blogger's Quilt Festival a few years ago.

Like many, I was disappointed when Google announced that they're discontinuing Google Reader. I've been trying out several alternatives. One of them, Feed Demon, works well, but I decided I don't care for it because it is based on my computer, rather than web based, like the others.

I'll be using Google Reader up until the last minute, but in the meantime I've been using, concurrently, Feedly, Bloglovin' and The Old Reader. There are things I don't like about Feedly and Bloglovin, but that could change. So far, The Old Reader looks most promising to me.

Bloglovin' has this thing where you have to put their code in a post in order to "claim your blog" for people to be able to follow you using them. So, here it is: Follow my blog with Bloglovin
When I get a round tuit, I'll put a gadget on the sidebar for it.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Photo catch up and giveaway winner


Here are some more photos of my very messy sewing room. See the comments on the previous post for some very good ideas from others on how to tackle the mess. Wish me luck!




 Under this floral fabric are mounds of fabrics being 
protected from the dust and light because they don't fit into the cabinets.




I'm a week late, but here are the photos of last week's snowstorm in Jerusalem. We get snow every couple of years, but the last time we had a big storm like this was 20 years ago! We have video of the four older kids then playing in the snow (youngest wasn't born yet) and it was a lot of fun to watch. That's my 20something year old son making a giant snowball last week!





I don't think I've ever done a giveaway that had so few entries. But, that meant that the odds were better and congratulations go to Queenie who won the 6 month membership to the Quilt Show! We've been in touch and I've sent her the gift certificate.

Enjoy!

Debbie

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

It's been four years!

And it's time for my usual yearly giveaway.

I wrote my first blog post on January 8, 2009. It's been a fun ride and isn't stopping. I may not post very often, less than 200 posts during the past four years, but I try to keep up.

I haven't done anything quilty in a while. That's because my sewing room (aka studio) is a royal mess. Piles and piles of stuff everywhere. It's almost impossible to find anything I need. I took a bunch of pictures to use in a "before" post, which will, hopefully, force me to start cleaning it up. I know it's going to be a very slow process. 

If anyone has some good advice on how to go about it, I'll listen. I was thinking of packing everything up in boxes and then cleaning and rearranging the room a bit, possibly adding some new organizational storage items. Then take one box at a time and sort it and put it away.

Anyway, now to the point of this blog post. I've been a member of The Quilt Show since the first day the site went live. In fact, several years ago I received an email from John saying that I was actually the very first member to sign up! 

Along with subscription renewals, they've been giving out six months membership gift certificates, worth $24.95, to give to a friend. So, for the fifth year in a row, I'm giving it away on my blog! The certificate is good for someone that is not a Star (paid) Member of The Quilt Show.

If you'd like to enter the giveaway, just leave a comment, on this post, letting me know if you have any advice for me on how to solve my messy sewing room dilemma. You have until January 14th at midnight U.S. EST, between Monday and Tuesday, to enter.

Now, this next thing is very important! To be eligible, there must also be a way for me to contact you. This means that if you are a no-reply blogger (no email address in your blogger profile, or you don't have a blogger account) you must leave your email address in the comment.

And, because photos are the main reason I read blogs, I'll leave you with one of the messy views of my sewing room.


Enjoy and good luck!

Debbie 

Monday, December 24, 2012

TAST Weeks 50 and 51


Last week's TAST stitch, the last of 2012, was the Knotted Cable chain stitch and the week before was the Berry stitch. I had a really difficult time with the Knotted Cable chain stitch. Neither the written instructions nor the photos were fully helpful to me and I couldn't find a video to help either. So, I muddled through it quickly just so I can say I did it.

Sharon will be continuing the TAST in 2013, with some changes that you can read more about here. I plan to continue and hope to be able to keep up. I sure have been learning a lot after years of using just the basic stitches.

Enjoy!

Debbie

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

TAST Weeks 48 and 49


Last week's TAST was the Arrowhead stitch and this week's is the Buttonhole Eyelet Flower. I had lots of fun combining them. But, although the Bullion Knot stitch is one of my favorite stitches (along with the French Knot) and I've made hundreds of them in the past, I just couldn't wrap (pun intended) my head around it this time. So, I found Mary Corbet's video to refresh my memory. (Please excuse the pencil marks I forgot to erase.)

As usual, click to enlarge




Enjoy!

Debbie

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

TAST Week 47


This week's TAST is the Portugese Border Stitch. I thought it to be a strange sort of a stitch. I found no video, nor other instructions, but Sharon's instructions were easy for me this time. After fiddling with the stitch in a triangle shape, I decided to try a straight line with beads. I put a bead on each of the foundations stitches and then worked up one side of the row. By that time I realized I hadn't made the foundation stitches long enough and didn't have a enough room to work up the other side. I decided it looks just fine this way and left it alone.


Enjoy!

Debbie

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

TAST Week 46


This week's TAST is the Checkered or Magic Chain stitch. It was a pleasure to have something a little lighter to work with this week, but there's no way I could have done it without Mary Corbet's video. I certainly did enjoy stitching it. 





And, just because Mary mentioned that she never tried it with three threads, I had to try it! It works! You can see some bumps where I didn't pull the unused colors through all the way, but with some extra care while stitching, it would look right.


Enjoy!

Debbie

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

TAST Weeks 44 and 45


I've done the TAST for Weeks 44 and 45 together and they happen to be almost the same stitch! Week 44 is the Closed base needlewoven picot and Week 45 is the Open base needlewoven picot. I was helped by another good video by Mary Corbet of Needle n Thread for the woven picot.

My plan was to make a circle of the open based, that would have been 12 of them, and a circle of the closed base inside. While it was an easy and fun stitch, I started to get bored really early on. So reduced the plan to what you see and filled in the circle pattern that I had penciled in on the fabric with some French knots. 


Enjoy!

Debbie

Thursday, October 25, 2012

TAST Week 43


This week's TAST is the Buttonhole Wheel Cup stitch. I found it to be a fun and very easy stitch to do. I've been doing my TAST sampler on a piece of Osnaberg and recently ran out of space. Before the sample I stitched last week, I sewed on an extra piece of fabric. Last week and this week I stitched to cover the seam. Since I stitched last week in the middle of the line, I decided with this stitch to extend each side to the end, which is why you are again seeing Weeks 40, 41 and 42.

  
And, here's the whole sampler, so far:

Click on the photos to enlarge. If you click on the TAST label at the end of this post, you can see details about each one of the stitches.

Enjoy!

Debbie