Charity Wallhanging

Over this past fall I’ve been accumulating charity projects to be worked on. I decided it is time to complete them and move them out.

The first project was this small wallhanging, designed and appliqued by Frances Stauffer. Frances was a very prolific designer in our community. She died a few years ago, but left many, many small wallhangings to be quilted and then auctioned at the Michiana Mennonite Relief Sale.

IMG_0192Someone had done some preliminary outline quilting on this little quilt, but it needed more stitches. I added the clam shells in the sky and quilted my version of echo quilting in the grass and pond. I’ve never done echo quilting before, and my echo lines aren’t as close as they should be, but for a first time, I think it is pretty good. They hadn’t quilted at all in the border so a cable was quilted there then I finished her with brown binding.

I used black thread for the quilting on the border and it was hard for me to see on the dark green. I think my days of quilting with black thread on dark fabrics are finished.

Charity project #1 is a complete and onto project 2.

I’m linking up with –

Kathy’s Slow Stitching Sunday

Quilting is more Fun than Housework

Love, Laugh, Quilt

Cooking Up Quilts

Freshly Pieced

Esther’s Wednesday Wow


Quilting Jane, Row C

With the quilting completed on row C on my Jane, I’ve used 527 yards of thread and just have 5 more rows to quilt. My goal is to have the quilting finished by the first of January, 2016.

IMG_0129Left side triangle 11.



IMG_0128Row C, blocks 1, 2 and 3.


IMG_0127Row C, blocks 4, 5 and 6.


IMG_0126Row C, blocks 7, 8 and 9.


IMG_0125Row C, blocks 10, 11 and 12.


IMG_0124Row C, block 13 and right side triangle 3.

I’m not giving a lot of explanation about quilting these blocks, they are mostly stitched in the ditch.

IMG_0191Earlier this month I hosted out-of-area friends overnight on their way to the Just Takes Two retreat in Shipshewana. As a thank-you gift, Chris gifted me a copy of the Dutch Treat applique book written by Judy Garden. I’ve been paging through this book entranced by the beautiful reverse applique. My applique skill isn’t up to the standards necessary for this quilt, but then I thought, “What about embroidery?” Wouldn’t these blocks look lovely in blue embroidery? I’m trying to remember if I’ve ever seen this quilt embroidered. I’ll have to think about this some more.

IMG_0184My last post was about the Jane Stickle quilt retreat I attended last week. I had one more photo I wanted to add. We had received 7 inches of snow on Saturday and yes, this was the same snow storm I drove through to get to Caroline’s Cotton Cottage. This picture was taken Sunday morning outside the eating room looking west toward the conference room where we sewed.

Linking up to Esther’s Wednesday Wow, Freshly Pieced, Quilting is more Fun Than Housework, Kathy’s Slow Sunday Stitching, Love/Laugh/Quilt, Cooking Up Quilts and Quilt Story.

Jane Stickle Quilt Retreat

I had a wonderful time at my retreat. I originally planned to write a post on Sunday but decided not to. Writing posts when suffering from sleep deprivation is not a good idea! But now I’m wide awake, most of the laundry is caught up, so here it my report.

We had very nice weather for the first 3 days of the retreat. One of the benefits of having the retreat at the Farmstead Inn is it is close enough to Yoder Department Store and Lolly’s Fabrics that I can easily walk to the stores in “downtown” Shipshe.

The Jane Stickle Quilt retreat is named to honor theIMG_0131 quilt Jane Stickle pieced during the civil war. Elaine Frey’s Jane was on display for the week-end. This quilt was made and gifted to her several years ago by retreat participants. The quilt was a gift of friendship in appreciation for her time spent organizing the retreat for so many, many years. The retreat wouldn’t exist if not for her leadership.

The first Jane block I ever pieced is in this quilt. (G5-Poof)

IMG_0183Someone commented on my last post that I should make some shopping time, and I did! Most of my shopping came from the resale table at the retreat where I bought these treasures, Ayers House Dancing Dollies Quilt by Irene Carrig and Auntie Green’s Garden by Irene Blanck of Focus on Quilts fame!

I scored the patterns on Wednesday evening and then on Thursday, Irene actually stopped by at the retreat to see her friend Patty Harant. She autographed the pattern for IMG_0132me and then we took a photo together. The whole retreat was a wonderful experience, but getting to meet Irene Blanck was the highlight of the entire week-end. Here we are, Patty, Irene and me!

A friend and I took some time on Friday to shop at Yoder’s and Lolly’s. Well, she shopped and I did reconnaissance in anticipation of Wana Night Out on December 1st. I’m getting my list ready!

IMG_0190On Saturday, I drove us through the first major winter snow storm of the year to Caroline’s Cotton Cottage in Rome City. (Hey, it’s northern Indiana. Unless I want to stay home all winter, you just have got to drive in snow!)

I bought designated fabrics for projects there. The bottom 4 fabrics are for Lucy Boston’s Patchwork of the Crosses I want to EPP someday. Doesn’t that border edge look lovely! The top left fabrics are 30’s fabrics to be used in Sweet Surrender and the blues on the top right are for the Salinda Rupp quilt, Nearly Insane. Some of the blues for Lucy Boston might make it into Nearly Insane too!

The final purchase I made was also from the retreat. I purchased a used Grace hand quilting frame that has never been used and is still in the box. (Does that make sense?) Son 2 is my handyman and he will get to put the frame together when he and his family are here after Christmas. I won’t be ready to use it until I complete quilting Jane on the old sticks and stand quilting frame. A new quilt frame gives me even more incentive to get the quilting completed. We’ll see if I can have her finished by the start of the new year.

IMG_0135Thursday evening was a pink pajama party with the famous pj’s from Target. There were 115 women at the retreat and 70 of them had the pajamas.

IMG_0146Many of the retreaters participated in a service project Friday morning and made dresses for Africa. 47 dresses and 8 britches were completed.

Late Friday afternoon Anita Shackelford was our guest speaker and gave a presentation about rescuing quilts. This was a very fascinating program with pictures from before and the finished rescued quilt. I would have thrown most of the before quilts in the trash but she took what I considered trash and turned them into treasures. She posts about her rescues on her blog. She really has given these quilts a new life.

Friday evening was Show & Tell. Only retreat participants can show & tell but the public is welcome to join us in the oohing and aahing. I didn’t get pictures of all the quilts but will just show you a few of the highlights. I also don’t remember who exhibited what except in the pictures that contain the maker. To see all of Show & Tell, visit Rosemary Youngs blog and see her smile box slide show. The first photos on Rosemary’s smile box are from the show & tell at the November 20th Moda club held at Lolly’s. Get a cup of coffee or tea, set back and enjoy all the beautiful quilts!

IMG_0154Lori displayed her Jane made with Kaffe Fassett fabrics.







IMG_0156Someone showed the start of their lovely Jane in blues. She changed up the cornerstones with itsy-bitsy 9-patches.








Val showed her 9th (!) Jane. Instead of using the normal corners, she substituted applique and embroidery.



IMG_0182Edith Shanholt showed this lovely quilt from both the Affairs of the Heart and My Mother Taught Me to Sew patterns. This picture isn’t from show & tell but was taken afterwards. Rosemary shows the actual quilt from show & tell and looks much nicer than this one displayed on the floor. Edith hand quilted her and used 950 yards of thread.

IMG_0160I can’t forget to show Lynn’s Phoebe designed by Diane Ford. This was a very long-term project and looks just beautiful.

These are just a few of the quilts from show & tell. To see them all, check out Rosemary’s slide show.

IMG_0185What did I work on over the long week-end? The main project was a kit I had purchased several years ago at Lolly’s for a queen sized, purple and green Summer Lake Log Cabin quilt designed by Judy Martin. The pattern is found in her Log Cabin Quilt Book.

This is 60 V blocks, 30 W blocks, 26 X blocks and 4 Z corner blocks. The borders are pieced piano keys. I had the strips along to sew, but just couldn’t sew another stitch on this project. All of the center blocks are pieced and I’ll lay them out and get the center sewn together sometime in January. That’s the plan anyway.

IMG_0189I also finished appliquing another album block for the Pastor’s Attic quilt.

When I started prepping for this applique quilt, I cut all the background squares. I like to overlock stitch the edges so they don’t ravel. I finished 5 edges, then decided this was extremely boring. I bagged up the remaining 20 backgrounds and took them along to the retreat. They have all been edged and are ready to be appliqued.

This retreat always kicks off my start of the winter season, a time for slowing down and doing the needlework projects I so enjoy. I also spend time in the barn feeding calves and other chores but there is no field work in the winter for me.

There are 142 days left until the April 2016 retreat which will signal the end of winter and start of the busy summertime here on the farm.

I’m linking to the following blogs –

Kathy’s Slow Stitching Sunday

Quilting is More Fun than Housework!

Love, Laugh, Quilt

Cooking Up Quilts

Esther’s Wednesday Wow



Quilting Jane, Row B

I’m leaving today for the Jane Stickle Quilt Retreat held at the Farmstead Inn in Shipshewana, Indiana. I’ve been looking forward to this retreat all fall. Next week I’ll show you what I accomplished this week-end.

I haven’t had time for any sewing or applique this week, just quilting on Jane. The quilting on row B is finished and here she is!


Left side triangle 12 and row B block 1.


IMG_0122Row B blocks 2, 3 and 4.


IMG_0121Row B blocks 5, 6 and 7.


IMG_0120Row B blocks 8, 9 and 10.


IMG_0119Row B blocks 11, 12 and 13.


IMG_0118Right side triangle 2.

Yards of thread used to date – 495.

Linking with Esther’s Wednesday Wow, Freshly Pieced WIP Wednesday and Kathy’s Slow Stitching Sunday.

Quilting Jane and Other Projects

Aren’t children wonderful? I don’t understand children who won’t help their parents with technology they don’t understand. As parents, we’ve helped our children, now they’re able to return the assistance. And I’m posting again. Thanks Son #2!

IMG_0103The center applique block for the Wilfred and Cloves quilt is completed and I’m very pleased with how she turned out! I’ve never appliqued a layered flower before. She’ll hang on my display wall until I get around to piecing the rest of the quilt, perhaps next spring sometime?

IMG_0110Approximately 5 years ago, I bought this book, A Baltimore Album by Marsha D. Radtke (The Pastor’s Attic Quilt) with the intentions of making this quilt someday. Most Baltimore Albums are made with poison green and red fabrics with a little yellow thrown IMG_0117in. I like those colors when I see them in other people’s quilts, but I just couldn’t bring myself to use those colors for my quilt. At the October Inspiration Club at the Pumpkinvine Quilt Shop, they had a display of Mayfield fabrics in red, black and beige. I really liked they way they blended and so my Baltimore Album quilt is going to be made with reds, black and beige/cream. The background fabric is the cream with white dots. It feels good to have finally made the decision as to the fabrics I want to use and it feels even better to have started the applique and have a finished block to show you.

I’ve been keeping up with quilting Jane and I’ve completed several rows since the last post.

First is the top triangle border and the corner kite blocks.



Top left corner kite.






Top row triangles 1, 2 and 3.




Top row triangles 4, 5 and 6.




Top row triangles 7, 8 and 9.




Top row triangles 10, 11 and 12.



Top row triangle 13 and the top right corner kite. Just for fun, I added another white with blue fabric to the triangle and I appliqued a circle instead of the oval that Jane had.

Row A has also been quilted. Now remember, when I sewed the left side triangles together, I reversed the placement so the top triangle 1 is on the bottom of the row and the bottom triangle 13 is on the top.



Left side triangle 13. I appliqued circles instead of ovals.



Row A blocks 1, 2 and 3.


IMG_0114Row A blocks 4, 5 and 6.


IMG_0113Row A blocks 7, 8 and 9.


IMG_0112Row A blocks 10, 11 and 12.


IMG_0111Row A block 13 and the right side triangle 1.

I think you all are caught up now with what I’ve been doing for the past several weeks. Linking to Esther’s Wednesday WowKathy’s Slow Sunday StitchingQuilting is More Fun than Housework, Love, Laugh, Quilt, Patchwork TimesCooking Up Quilts and Quilt Story.

Photograph Problems

Since I have completed the top feather border of my Jane quilt, the quilt is more than half quilted! I would love to show you a picture of my progress. Unfortunately, I am having a problem with the card in my camera, pictures won’t download onto my computer! My computer technician (son 2) is coming for a visit the middle of November. He said he thought he could solve the problem. Until then, my blog will be photoless (is that a word?).

So I guess I won’t be posting until the picture situation is resolved. I’ll keep on quilting Jane and working on other projects. You will get an update sometime in November, I hope!

Blessings to you all. Gretchen

Quilting Jane, Row I

I hope my posts about quilting my Jane Stickle quilt aren’t getting too boring; quilting Jane is my main focus project. Row I is now completed and the yards of thread used is 313. As always, click on each picture to enlarge.

IMG_0043LST5 and block I1. I paperpieced the little triangle in the point of LST5. The 9-patches of I1 are stitched in the ditch and curvy square in the blue squares.

IMG_0042Blocks I2, I3 and I4. All 3 of these blocks are stitched in the ditch.


IMG_0041Blocks I5 and I6. Stitch in the ditch for I5, stitch in the ditch and a little outline ditch for I6. I did a different background design for a change.

IMG_0040Blocks I7, I8 and I9. Stitched in the ditch for all 3 of the blocks. Now block I7 is supposed to have 4 teeny-tiny triangles in the blue sashing but I left them off. This was before I had decided to start appliquing circles. I’ve made a note to remind myself, when the quilt is finished and out of the frame, to applique 4 teeny-tiny circles on this block. I’m not talented enough to applique them while the quilt is in the frame. I could try it, but I don’t think they’d look very nice.

IMG_0039Blocks I10, I11 and I12. Just added some quilted triangles to I10 along with stitch in the ditch. I11 is all stitched in the ditch while I added circles in the center of I12 along with stitching in the ditch.

IMG_0038Blocks I13 and RST9. More stitch in the ditch.


IMG_0047I’ve rolled enough times that I am able to move the bottom quilt stick and put the rest of the quilt in the frame. Now I’m quilting feathers again. When I started quilting Jane, it was fun and exciting to finally start and I enjoyed quilting the feathers on the outside border. Now the feathers are rather boring to quilt but they need to be finished before I can quilt anymore of the inside.

IMG_0055Do you ever wake up in the middle of the night and can’t get back to sleep? This happened to me the other night so I got up and finished pressing the 4-patch blocks I had sewn. There are more blocks than what show in the picture.

IMG_0056After they were pressed, IMG_0058I started laying them on my design wall. I want this to be a simple and quick quilt. I normally like quilts that are set on point the best, but I’m liking the straight set. What do you think? The blocks will finish at 8″ finished and there will be more colors than pink and green.

Linking up to Esther’s Wednesday Wow, Freshly Pieced WIP’s, My Quilt Infatuation NIT, A Quilting Reader’s Garden, Richard and Tanya’s Quilts, Kathy’s Slow Stitching SundayOh Scrap, Love Laugh Quilt, Patchwork TimesCooking Up Quilts and Quilt Story.

Whoops, I hit the wrong button. I didn’t intend to send this post until Wednesday. Oh well.