Thursday, June 30, 2016

Rainbow Rose

For weeks now I've been admiring on Instagram and in the blogging world the progress of several quilters as they have played along in the Rainbow Rose Quilt Along hosted by Modern Quilters Ireland.

I was the shy little kid in the shadows of the playground to scared to take the plunge because I knew my stash is lacking in some color varieties.  It's not that I don't own all the colors of the rainbow.  I do paint with all the colors of the wind.  It's just all of my oranges seem to fall within the same shade of red orange and a rainbow needs a little yellow orange too.  So I decided to live vicariously through all of my friends and set this one out.

Enter my quilty BFF, Sandra from mmmquilts.  She just happen to ask one day in passing if I was participating in the Rainbow Rose and I explained how much I loved the idea of creating a rainbow themed quilt but my stash just didn't quite support the color transitions.  She asked if I wanted her to cut me squares as she cut hers (how could you not love her??) and I told her I appreciated it, but I would just set this one out.  About a week later I received a package in the mail...from Sandra.  My first thought, was Awesome!  She must have sent Cindy's round robin block to me early, meaning I could get started.  (If you haven't read about our mini round robin hop over and check out my post here)  But no.

She actually sent me 40 squares!  I could not wait till the weekend when I could dive into them.  Since my stash was already spread across the floor from my fabric pull for a heart quilt to send to Orlando, I decided to pull a few of my fabrics to see how they played with Sandra's.

Step one, creating the middle pieces, went together very quickly.  The middle sections consisted of simple squares and HST's in the colors of yellow, turquoise, purple and red.  The hardest part was figuring out my background fabric.  I'm fibbing, it was easy.  I immediately went for some FQ's in Zen Chick Modern Backgrounds-paper.

Then came the actual hard part.  Step 2, piecing the corners.  The corners would be the transition colors.  The flow of how one goes from red to yellow, which is orange, but finding shades of red orange down to yellow orange (remember I said I was lacking).

Sandra's squares where the perfect fillers to bridge the gaps in my stash!  I actually didn't take a lot of pictures during the construction phase of this project because I was so engrossed in the process.

Step 3 would be to create the center star.  This step flew by before I realized I didn't photograph it at all.  Basically, I pulled from left over triangles to create the center.

And low and behold, I think I went from being three weeks behind to one week ahead.  I had to piece it together.  I had to see her in all of her glory.  I just couldn't help it.

A storm had just rolled through, but the sun and a breeze came out and allowed me to take a few pictures.  So this is the rainbow after the storm.  (If you have some good vibes and prayers to spare, please send them WV's way.  The storms that rolled through our area have been devastating to the southern part of the state.  We were extremely lucky in the north central area.)

A huge thanks to Sandra for being kind enough to share part of her stash with me!  This quilt would not have been possible without her generous heart.  Also, Sandra was the Desire to Inspire Designer over at Henry Glass Fabrics this month.  She did an amazing job creating wonderful quilted projects using the Better at the Lake Collection.  If you have a free moment hop over to Henry Glass Fabrics and get to know this amazing talented lady and check out everything she was able to create this month!  You will not be sorry.

This quilt isn't quite close to done, but I love it soooo much.  I can hear the little spools of Aurifil thread calling it's name.  It's just begging to be quilted.  But it must wait just a bit longer.  All good things come in time.

Today I'm linking up with TGIFF and Can I Get A Whoop! Whoop!

Monday, June 27, 2016

Round Robin--Round 2

It's hard to believe that June is already over, but that also means that round one of the mini round robin between myself, Sandra at mmmquilts, Julie at Pink Doxies and Cindy at Stitchin at Home is also over too.  At the end of May I mailed my block, The Attraction block to Julie for her to work her magic on.

In return, Sandra shipped the center for her mini quilt to me.

This block was speaking to me before it ever showed up in my mail box.  "Friendship Stars."  That is exactly what she was saying.  It was kind of funny because normally I would have discussed this project with Sandra, but this time I couldn't.  She really wanted to be surprised.  I however was dying to bounce this idea off of someone.  Lara at Buzzin Bumble and I have been emailing back and forth from comments on each other's posts, so I bounced my idea off of her.  Lara, I'm not sure what took us so long to connect??  But I'm sure glad we did!  She was just as excited about my idea as I was and sent a mock up drawing.  It was like she was in my head.

Since my stars needed to be 3" blocks I wanted them to be as accurate as possible.  I made the decision to paper piece them.  Not my normal choice of piecing, but I wanted perfection.  I used EQ7 to print off a paper piecing template and made a test block.  Yup, it was do able.  For my fabric selection I decided to stick with blue, green and a hint of purple to pull colors from Sandra's block.

Half of the stars would be green with a purple center and the other half blue with a purple center.  I printed off 12 star templates.

And began cutting squares.  Lots of squares.  Lots and lots of squares: 96 background, 12 purple center, 60 green and 60 blue.  A total of 228 squares, but who's counting.  That's a whole bunch of squares for a 3" border.  But they were worth every rotary cut.

They actually stitched up much quicker than I anticipated.

And in no time at all this little Quilter's Retreat star block had it's first addition added.  The border of friendship stars represent all of the friendships made and nurtured during the little quilter's retreat taking place inside of that building. 

 Can't you just hear all of the laughing and fun going on right now?

So round one of our mini round robin is officially finished.  This little block is currently making it's way to Julie for her to work her magic on and Sandra is shipping Cindy's block to me.  Hopefully, my spidey senses will start tingling any moment now.  Since Sandra lives so far away, I think it has to travel through customs and possibly a few states before I can start hearing it.   

To check out the progress on the other blocks in our little round robin make sure you visit, Julie at Pink Doxies, Sandra at mmmquilts and Cindy at Stitchin At Home.

Today I'm linking up with Linky TuesdaySew Cute Tuesday and  Main Crush Monday.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Gooseberry Winner

Like all good things, parties must come to an end.  I did the drawing using the random number generator app on my phone first thing this morning and the winner is comment number 33.

33. Cheryl said...
I don't think that it was 17 year cicadas, but I was in Washington DC for my sister's college graduation and the cicadas were out. They were everywhere, it was really gross. You could not walk down the side walk without stepping on them.
Who knew that walking on giant bugs could lead to a give away win??  So a big congratulations to Cheryl at Meadow Mist Designs!!  I've sent an email to her so that I can get these fat quarters and spool of thread off to their new home.  I'm pretty sure they will be well loved.  Another huge thanks to everyone who took the time to stop by and those that hoped over to give Dave the Quilt Engineer a "hello."  I love a good party so I'm pretty sure it won't be the last giveaway we do there in at Wonderland.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Celebrate Like It's 1999 Giveaway

Actually there are several reasons to party around here like it's 1999.  That was the year these crazy kids decided to take the leap and walk down the isle and it was a year of the 17 year cicadas.

This is a picture taken outside of the church where we were married.  They were everywhere!  If you are unfamiliar with these little critters, for most of their lives they live underground as nymphs.  You would never know they are 8 ft under the ground.  Every 17 years they dig their way to the surface and moult their skin to become these large fly like things (the un-glamorous butterfly story if you ask me).  The males make a buzzing/clicking sound in hopes to snag themselves a lady friend.  The screeches from these love sick fools will drive you nuts insane.  The females then lay their eggs in the bark of twigs, the nymphs hatch then fall to the ground and bury until they emerge 17 years later.  Then the cycle starts all over again.  

With all these love sick bugs fling around EVERYWHERE and setting on EVERYTHING, it's made capturing my quilty photos quite challenging.  

I can admit I'm shameless and made my teenage daughter safely remove him so that I could take pictures of my Zentangle quilt.  No bugs where harmed during the photo shoot.

So now that the science lesson is over.  Let's celebrate 17 years of marriage, 17 year cicadas and Dave the Quilt Engineer's 17th birthday on June 17th.  I got a little bit carried away there.  He's not 17 but the 17th is his birthday.  Oh yeah and the birth of his blog Dave The Quilt Engineer! (Don't forget to pop over and say hello)

So how about two charm packs of Moda's Gooseberry and a spool of Aurifil thread I purchased at a local quilt shop because I want to share the love.  This is one of my favorite lines of fabric right now.  It's bright, it's fun and gosh darn it I love the name.  I love it so much I've used it as the main fabrics in my Pat Sloan's BOM My Secret Garden.

January--DC Botanic Garden

February--Killarnay National Park, Ireland

March--Japanese Flower Garden

April--Keukenhof Garden, Holland

May--Hershey Garden, Hershey, PA

June--Halifax Public Garden, Halifax Canada

For the give away simply leave me a comment.  Maybe tell me what you would like to make using the Gooseberry charms or if you have ever had a run in with a with the 17 year cicadas.  You can have a second entry if you leave a separate comment letting me know if you follow me (Instagram, Bloglovin, Twitter, email, random stalker).  If you are a no reply blogger please make sure you leave your email address so I can contact you if you win.  I do my best to reply to all comments, so if you do not hear back from me within 48 hrs that might be a sign something is up.  The give away will be open till Tuesday June 21st at midnight.  I will pick a winner using a random number generator on June 22nd.  Good luck to everyone!

Also, if you have a minute hop over and officially meet Dave The Quilt Engineer.  Hopefully, this weekend I can help him do some house work on his blog to clean up a few things.  I'd rather clean up a blog than clean house...shhhh.

The 2016 New Bloggers Blog Hop kicked off on Monday.  Don't forget to hop over to Yvonne at Quilting Jetgirl, Cheryl at Meadow Mist Designs and Stephanie at Late Night Quilter to find their hive schedules and enter in a chance for some pretty cool prizes.

Chocolate Kitten Not Included

Today I'm linking up with TGIFF, and Can I Get A Whoop!Whoop!

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Happy Mail #2

Since we've entered the age of the internet, it seems the contents of those little metal boxes attached to poles lessen and lessen.  Or when you do open that small rounded door all that is left is a pile of bills, and who wants that??  But every once and a while, you pull that door bravely open and find that the mail gods have smiled upon you and low and behold a little present awaits you.

I am quite a bit late in writing this post.  It seems like things around wonderland have been crazy as of lately, but I wanted to take a second to share some happy mail that has made it's way to me over the past few months.

Several months ago, I was lucky enough to pattern test for Cheryl over a Meadow Mist Designs.  I consider Cheryl to be one of my pattern writing mentors.  She has helped my pattern writing to evolve so much, so I considered being asked to pattern test a huge honor.  Plus I had been hoping to pattern test for her for some time.  I believe pattern testing is a great way to work on your writing skills as well, because you look at the pattern in a more technical manner.  But I digress.  A few weeks later this charm pack of Atrium by Joel Dewberry and four mini charms of Moda's Gardenvale showed up in my mail box.  She sent them as a thank you for pattern testing.  This was completely unexpected and over the top generous. A huge thank you to Cheryl for the goodies!

Next up, I was the winner of a giveaway.  What? What?  These actually arrived in the mail yesterday and I almost completely forgot about them.  Back in March I participated in the 2016 New Block Blog Hop sponsored by Paintbrush Studios.  The challenge was to create a 12" block using FQ's of their Ocean Sunrise bundle.  They were also hosting several give aways of a FQ Bundles in the Ocean Sunrise palette.  I was one of the lucky random winners.  I'm not 100% sure what I will do with these, but ideas are brewing.

Speaking of give aways, I also won a copy of Lara at Buzzin Bumble's book Crafted Applique from Jenn at A Quarter Inch From the Edge during Lara's month long blog hop for her book.

(Have you seen the book yet??  It's amazing.  Quilt life changing.)  I had actually already purchased a copy of the book.  Lara offered to refund the money of any one who won that already had purchased the book.  But when she contacted me I had another idea.  I told her I felt her book was worth every penny I paid for it and would even buy it again should I ever need to.  So I asked if she would hold on to that copy and I will do a give away for the book (maybe say July) after I make something using her method.  And she said, of course!  The reason I want to do this is because, I have had a love hate relationship with applique.  I love the look of it.  I HATE to do it.  However, after reading Lara's book, I think I'm in love.  I think trying this technique will be a good project for both me and Dave the quilt engineer (hubby's new name for himself).  So make sure you check back in periodically to see how our adventure turns out and win a copy for yourself!

And my last item of happy mail probably makes me the most happy.  Leanne at Devoted Quilter hosted a give away in honor of her blog reaching 100,000 page views.  The give away was for a mini quilt of denim hexi flowers she created.  Let me tell you it is breath taking.  You can read her post about crating it here.  Winning this little wall hanging was exactly what I needed at the time I won it, I was blown away and my spirits where lifted.  I couldn't wait to take pictures of it to share with you.

The quilting is absolutely breath taking.

The denim hexi mini hangs on my wall next to my beautiful pillow cover made my Sandra at mmmquilts.  (you can read about Sandra's beautiful heart here and here.)  Hands down my favorite wall in the house.

I can see them when I'm sewing, doing the dishes or hanging out in our living room and that makes me very happy.

So just curious, have you ever received happy mail?  If so what is some of your favorite things you have received?

Monday, June 13, 2016

2016 New Bloggers Blog Hop

It's that time of year again and I have to say I'm pretty excited about it.  What time of the year you ask?  For the New Bloggers Blog Hop of course.  A time of year for bloggers who have been blogging for less than three years to come together and work with one another to make their blogs as great as possible.  Oh and the best part...make new quilt blogging friends!

This is my second (and last insert very sad face) time participating in the hop.  Why would I want to participate in the hop if I already participated last year?  Good question.  When I participated last year I had only been blogging for just a few months.  Though I learned a tremendous amount, I figured there is always more to learn, I fall within the guidelines, so why not.  Plus the thought of meeting almost 50 new bloggers sounded pretty tempting too.  I consider some of my good friends to be bloggers that I met on the hop just last year.  Even though I have never met them in person, we talk sometimes daily; be it text, FaceTime or email.

So now for a little bit about me.  Hello.  My name is Tish. My blog name came about because of my love for the Lewis Carroll book Alice's Adventures in Wonderland.  In my world the books would be nothing but pictures...of quilts of course.  We are all mad here.  Simply mad about quilting.  So if quilting is your passion, I think you'll fit in just fine.  If quilting is not your passion, THEN OFF WITH YOUR HEAD!  Just kidding, grab a brush, paint some roses red and please stay awhile.

My crazy family (including the furry ones) sometimes make an appearance here.  Let me introduce you to my band of merry misfits.

First up is Oliver my trusty sidekick, who has been with me ever since I've taken up quilting.  I think he takes it just as seriously as I do.  Oliver now has a tiny sister, Princess Caroline of the Fuzzy Butts.  Though Miss Caroline is bigger now, this picture is the first time she invaded our quilting space and Oliver's reaction.  These two provide hours of entertainment and never disappoint.

Then we have brothers from the same litter, Newton and Becker.  They are pit bull mixes and I would not trade them for the world.  They have never been separated a day in their life and share a very special bond.  I cannot imagine one without the other and quite frankly, I never want too.  They weigh about 65lbs a piece, but in their heads they are only 2lb lap puppies.  Becker would let me carry him in my purse if I had one big enough.

Last of the furry crew, is Miss Maggie, mother to all.  She has been with me almost eleven years and I estimate she is probably around thirteen in age.  Don't let her size fool you, she is one spunky gal and still keeps everyone in line, including me.  

That brings us to my mini me, Jen.  She is my adorable teenage daughter, forever on a quest to do what ever is necessary to not look like her mother...good luck with that babe.  She's pretty sharp with a bow and arrow and even an air rifle.  She provides me with hours of laughs and an occasional headache.  I wish I could slow the years down, but I've enjoyed watching her turn into the young lady she is becoming.  

And last but definitely not least, my husband of seventeen years, David.  Or as he is slowly becoming known, Dave the Quilt Builder.  In my quest to take over the world with quilting (if everyone quilted the world would be a warmer place, just saying), I have recently converted him over to the quilting side.  There may even be a blog in his future, he's still on the fence.  

Guess it's time for me to get a shirt saying I'm taken by a smokin' hot quilt builder.  Wink. Wink.

Now let's talk quilting.  I'm going to go out on a limb and call myself a modern quilter...because I live in modern times.  However, I do not necessarily have a style per se.  I typically create whatever feels right at the time.  I would like to think I would try just about anything/method at least once.  One of the things I love about my quilt blogging friends, is that they challenge me to step outside of my comfort zone and create things I didn't know lived inside of me.  That's what this blog is about, sharing my processes, being inspired, hopefully inspiring someone and having a few laughs along they way.

My Quilty Best Friend Sandra (mmmquilts) on a stick.  You can read more about this shenanigan here.

  Last year I decided to quilt along with Pat Sloan and her mix of surprise designers in the 2015 Aurifil Designer Mystery BOM.  Below is a sampling of four of the minis I created.  You can check out the rest on my 2015 Aurifil Mini Quilt page.

Indigo Crossing, Penny Love, Timber and Winter Stars 

This past year would also be a year of design for me.  After getting my feet wet in the 2015 Fabri-Quilt New Block Blog Hop I would go on to write three more tutorials.  They are completely free and can be found on my Tutorials tab at the top of this page.  I hope to collaborate with Dave the Quilt Builder and release our first for sale pattern by the end of the year.

Check out Watermelon Taffy and Nautical Compass in my Tutorials.

Wonderland also contains a Quilt Gallery featuring some of the finishes I'm most proud of.  These are only a few of the quilts that can be found in the gallery.

Zentangle Whole Cloth


Hello Darling Modern Building Blocks
Mini Swoon

I hope I've convinced you to stick around and have a look.  You never quite know what this chick is up to.  I'm pretty sure I'm getting the nickname "crazy quilt lady" around town and I wear that badge with pride.

Blogging Tip:  Don't be afraid to get creative with your pictures.  I can admit a blog with great pictures or quilt porn (that's for you Jayne) will suck me in every time.  If you have a finished quilt, try to get it in the best lighting and document it well.  Don't be afraid to go into public, put it in a tree or lay it on the ground.  I think I enjoy photographing my quilts almost as much as I enjoy making them.

Quilting Tip:  One word.  Plexiglas.  Yup I said Plexiglas. Oh and don't forget dry erase markers.  One of my most used tools.  I love to lay it on top of my quilts to audition my quilting motifs.  Then I can set it in front of my sewing space to refer to when I am quilting.  Then simply erase and start over again.

From my post Table Runners Finished

How about we close with random facts about me (if you follow me on Instagram you may have read some of these before):
  • I'm super short at 4'11"  
  • I avoid making left hand turns whenever possible and haven't parallel parked since I took my driving test.
  • My biggest fear is needles...yet I quilt.
  • I am quite possibly the world's worst speller. (It's possible some of you know this already)
  • I have never read Harry Potter or seen Rocky Horror Picture Show.  I'm not sure why because they seem like things I would like.
  • I like to take popular songs and parody them Weird Al style to drive my daughter crazy.
So how about you?  Do you have some sort of random factoid about yourself that seems a bit off the beaten path or is not common knowledge?  I'd love to know.  Maybe it will help me feel a bit more normal.  

Now let's talk blog hop talk.  Our blog hop leaders, Yvonne at Quilting Jetgirl, Cheryl at Meadow Mist Designs and Stephanie at Late Night Quilter have worked very hard to organize all of the new bloggers and wrangle up some pretty awesome sponsors.  So on the dates of the hop make sure you pay each of the leaders a visit to learn more about their hive members posting that day and sign up for the give aways.  You do not want to miss out.  

I was lucky enough to be part of Yvonne's hive, The Sewcial Network.  Our hive is made up of eighteen very talented quilt bloggers, each with something unique to say. 

So today make sure you hop over and check out the following new blogger's posts:

I've also added the schedule dates and who will be posting.

Monday, June 20th
Carole @ Carole Lyles Shaw
Anne @ Said With Love
Beth @ Plaid and Paisley
Jennifer  @RV Quilting
Mary @ Made By Marney

Monday, July 11th
Sharon @ Yellow Cat Quilt Designs
Amanda @ This Mom Quilts
Laurel @ Quilts By Laurel
Maria @ Penny Lane Quilts

Monday, July 18th
Jennifer @ Dizzy Quilter
Seven @ The Concerned Craft
Cynthia @ Quilting in Bogor
Amanda @ Quiltologie

So, a big thanks for taking the time to stop by and check out my little bit of the quilt blogging community.  I hope you will come back and visit.  Quilting is always more fun with friends.

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