Wednesday, March 27, 2013

The Stroller Quilt is going a'walkin'...

K. Sullivan is the highest bidder at $80!! Congratulations and thank you soooo much for supporting brain tumor research at Duke!

(Please send me an email at so that I can send you the details on how to donate.)

"This is such a sweet quilt - you're going to love it!"

The next quilt is our largest one yet (and is not a baby quilt!).  We open the auction this coming Monday, April 1.  Here's a sneak peek:

Monday, March 25, 2013

"Children at Play" Stroller Quilt

Okay, do you all remember (what might as well have been called) my "Ode to Sarah Jane" post recently?  Well, this week's quilt comes out of that same Sarah-Jane-fabric obsession.

It's all crinkly because it's pre-washed and ready for baby-lovin'!

It all started when I got pregnant with my fourth.  I had already made my twin-size quilts for Elyse and Henry's beds, Charlotte had her crib-size quilt, so how could we leave Baby #4 out of all the "Children at Play" fun?  My friend, Tracy, knew that I had so many scraps leftover from my previous two girl quilts that I planned to go ahead and make Marian's baby quilt from those.  Yet, she also knew she just had to give me a gift that could be described by "Children at Play" and "quilt" all at once. (And she was right!)  Enter: the stroller quilt.

Tracy got started using this Moda Bake Shop recipe.  But the half-square triangles just weren't working for her.  So she started over and made my Marian's quilt from regular 5-inch blocks.

The mysterious Marian on the quilt which Tracy made for me her.

The blocks for today's quilt are the half-square triangles that Tracy had left over from my baby's quilt.  (Fun fact: at the baby shower, Tracy addressed the quilt to "Baby Mirabelle", and even the cake had "Mirabelle's" name on it.  That's right... we did a little switcheroo at the last minute, so "Marian" did not come into existence until about 3 hours after her birth!)

Does this little girl look like your daughter?  Then this is the quilt for you!

Here's Tracy's "Betsy", just smelling the flowers.

From left to right: hopscotch in light pink, doll & bow tie, flowers in fuschia 

Little pink shoes in one corner - so sweet!

A summertime romper, pinwheels, and more hopscotch.

Come on... you know you're in love with these fabrics now, too!

Since spring is coming up, I did not put a layer of batting in the middle.  So it's just the cotton quilt top, and the minky backing.  I did some straight-line quilting only on the white sashing.  That keeps it light and fluffy.

The minky back is pieced because, guess what - that's what I had leftover from previous projects!  This is the spirit of quilting at its best: "Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without."  But it works perfectly that the part that folds over when tied is the pink part!

See the ties on the side? 

The ties on the side allow you to tie it to a stroller or to a car seat. I found that it didn't work too well for Marian in her car seat - she was drowning in it!  

But it works just great to be tied onto a stroller for a child up to (probably) 2 1/2 years old.

It can also be used to line the base of a pack 'n play.  (Be sure to take out your tape measure so that you won't be disappointed.)  This is how I use mine; see Marian modeling this use at the beginning of the post.

It just screams "Spring!", don't you think?

"Charlotte is under the weather today; she sends her regrets.  But I am so happy to be modeling this week's quilt!"

Quilt stats:
Measures: 25 x 31.5 inches
Pieced by: Tracy and me
Quilted by: me
Fabrics: Children at Play by Sarah Jane, and others from our stash.
(Note: no batting in this quilt)

Auction Details:
Please place a bid in the comment section at the end of this post.  If you are posting as "anonymous" please be sure to leave your name in the comment (e.g. Jane Doe bids $75).
-Starting bid: $75 (increasing by $5 minimum)
(100% of proceeds go toward brain cancer research!)
 -Auction ends Wednesday, March 27 at 8 pm EST.

Making my home prettier, one piece of Sarah Jane fabric at a time.  :)

P.S.  How cute is this little burp cloth / lovey that I put together for Marian this week?  The top is actually pieced from three different scraps of the same "Just Stay Little" fabric.  I think it's my favorite out of the whole line.  I like to do little projects like this because 1) they're quick! and 2) it gives me an opportunity to try new skills that I don't want to test on bigger projects that are more important to me.
  For example, on this little mini-quilt I learned:
1) the way I quilted it made most of the patching indiscernible to most anyone except for me and Ms. Sarah Jane herself - success!
2) there is a real way to sew a Y-seam, and I need to learn it - not a success :(
3) it was harder than I thought to catch the binding on the back by sewing an invisible seam right next to the binding on the front - not a success :(

Friday, March 22, 2013

"Star Bright" is going to brighten up...

... Claret's day!  Hooray!

Claret is the highest bidder at $525 .  Wow!  It's so exciting to see people be so generous for brain tumor research.  (And I really think this quilt is worth every penny.)

But seriously - that was one intense bidding war!  I left for the grocery store (as per my usual Friday night activity), and I told Marcus that if I were not home in time, to stop the bidding right at 8:00.  (And don't you know that I still have a flip-phone, and so was completely oblivious to all the drama while shopping?)  Well, I walked back in the door at 7:50 p.m. to the two babies having just vomited all over themselves, the carpet, and my husband, all the while a bidding war was ensuing, and my freezer foods were crying to be put away so as not to melt.  My. oh. my.  What a night.

"Wow!!  I'm getting giddy thinking about the cures that 'Star Bright' is contributing to!"

Thank you so much Jenn, Laurie, and Claret.  How exciting to be a part of so much good that Duke is doing in the field of neuro-oncology.

And to those of you who were sad to have missed out on this one, I promise that I have two more which are similar in style to this one.  I'm so excited to put those up in the coming weeks!

Next auction begins this Monday, March 25.  See you then!

(And for those of you worried about the babes, it seems that Charlotte and Marian have caught that nasty stomach bug that is making its way around.  Bummer.)

Monday, March 18, 2013

Star Bright

Aloha!  This beautiful quilt comes to us all the way from the sunny island of Hawaii (by way of California for the quilting).

"Star Bright" was pieced by a friend of mine named Jenn.  We met in Bible study out in Arizona (though the Army currently has her family stationed in Hawaii - jealous much?).  Do you know what that means?  She has known Charlotte since she was only four days old.  That's because I just could not miss a meeting, those ladies are so dear to me.  This also means that Jenn has been following Charlotte's story since the day of diagnosis.  And as I was thinking of that, I had this strange flashback, remembering that she actually even came to the hospital, three hours away from home, on the day of Charlotte's first neurosurgery.  Wow!  What a friend!  But enough background info...

Pass the baby's burp cloth, would you?  Because this is drool worthy. Ready?....

"Star Bright" by Jenn Crabb Dodson and Laurie Dodson Manske


Now unfortunately for me, I did not quilt when I lived in Arizona.  In fact, I had only just bought my first sewing machine and was stitching up just some crayon rolls.  I did not even like quilts at the time, let alone have any interest in making one.  Even so, I was impressed with Jenn's quilting.  That says a lot for her skills, don't you think?

You should believe I was thrilled when she told me she'd help me with this fundraising project!

This quilt is going to be great to snuggle under while reading a good book!

When I asked Jenn what this quilt's story is, she wrote,

"The fabric is from Riley Blake Designs in the 'Flutter' charm pack.  I picked these patterns because some of the fabric has butterflies on it which symbolize change and overcoming circumstances just like precious Charlotte has been doing her whole life.  Also, some of the fabric has the words 'hope' and 'dream' and 'imagine' in the background.  So 'Star Bright' shines with all my hopes and dreams for the change 'Angels Among Us' can bring to all the soaring butterflies like Charlotte through their important research."

Wow!  How thoughtful and sweet is she?

Here are some closer shots of the fabrics...

Can you see the butterfly in blue?

Here is the center point of the star, where eight beautiful fabrics meet.

I have to confess, my photography/blogging skills just do not do these fabrics justice.  Please check them out here.

Also, even the white fabric is gorgeous.  It looks like a solid white at first glance, but if you look very, very closely at the picture below, you might be able to see that the design looks exactly like the border on this blog!

Now, let's talk about the quilting that Jenn's sister-in-law, Laurie, did.  It's amazing...  

Here you can see the lovely quilting on the blue border.

Laurie did three different quilting designs.  There is one design on the outer, white border, then a loopy design on the blue border (above) and a third gorgeous design covering the center blocks.  I tried to capture all three designs here:

The quilting is accented so nicely because the back of the quilt is this whole-cloth red fabric.

Here's Charlotte: keeping warm while ready to pull her favorite novel off of the bookshelf and read a couple hundred pages or so.

Though I would love to have this quilt to share a cold night, a hot cup of tea, and a good book with, you might want to hang it on the wall.  It's so very lovely.

We're starting the bids at $175 because, Baby, it's worth it.  (And so is brain tumor research, remember?)

Quilt Stats:
Measures: 54.5 x 54.5 inches
Pieced by : Jenn Dodson
Quilted by: Laurie Manske
Fabric: "Flutter" by Riley Blake and others from her stash

Auction Details:
Please place a bid in the comment section at the end of this post.  If you are posting as "anonymous" please be sure to leave your name in the comment (e.g. Jane Doe bids $175.)
-Starting bid: $175 (increasing by $5 minimum)
(100% of proceeds go toward brain cancer research!)
 -Auction ends Friday, March 22 at 8 pm EST.

Trust me: you want this on your doorstep!

P.S. You probably thought I was joking about "pulling her favorite novel" off the bookshelf, right?  Funny thing is... just before I took these pictures, Charlotte actually managed to pull a book off of the shelf (with her feet!) for the first time.  Any guesses what the girl with a dozen surgical incision scars, two stainless steel stents just above the heart, a central line in the heart, a gastrostomy tube in the stomach, and a graft in the spinal column chose?

Oh, just Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. 

I might find it just an odd coincidence... were it not for that sly look on her face.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

"Once Upon a Time" has been won!

And the winner is: Sharon Creedon for $105 !!

Thank you so much for supporting brain tumor research at Duke!

(I will send you an email shortly, detailing how to pay.)

"Fair thee well, pretty princess quilt.  At least I still have my pretty princess shoes."

Next quilt auction: a GORGEOUS throw-size quilt opens this Monday, March 18.

But if you are sad to have missed out on the Sarah Jane boy quilt we did earlier this week, or this past little girl quilt, have no fear... I will be combining both themes into a Sarah Jane baby quilt for Monday, March 25.    Here's a sneak peek for that one - you won't want to miss it!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Once Upon a Time

My "Once Upon a Time" quilt is the perfect crib quilt for the little princess in your life.  The fabrics were donated to me by the same, sweet friend who donated the Pink Diamond fabrics.  (With the exception of the butterfly print; that one came from my mom, and I think it helped tie the whole thing together.  Thanks, Mom!)  The fabrics were just too sweet to cut into tiny little bits, so I went with this design instead.  It is perfect for medium- to large-scale fat quarter fabrics.

I had seen a quilt like this on Pinterest, so I decided to go ahead and just design a pattern myself.  I'm very pleased with how it turned out.  Quilting involves a lot of math.  Lucky for me, I paid attention in Geometry class.  Lucky for me, quilting does not involve Calculus. (I never took that course, and I don't regret it for a day.)

Here are the close-ups of the fabrics:

Princess and Frog Prince, Castle, Horse and Carriage, looking glass, flowers, butterflies.


Frog Prince on lilypad


Princess hat, flowers and butterflies on purple

The vertical stripe is made up of little flowers whose green leaves match the binding.

"Once Upon a Time" was quilted with a large stipple stitch by a sweet lady in my husband's hometown.  She did a great job.  Thanks, Reva!

I backed it with that super-soft minky fabric in fuscia.  I've never backed a quilt with this before, though I've seen it done over at Cluck Cluck Sew quite a few times.  It is really, really nice.  The quilt has a wonderful drape to it, and of course the cuddle factor is out of this world!  I think I'm going to be doing this more often.

I did the binding in a green that I picked up from my local quilt shop.  I'm glad I did!  As my husband says, "It gives a nice pop of color."  Isn't he sweet to "talk quilt" with me?  In any case, the green matches the frog prince and the leaves on the flowers.  It does a nice job of pulling those colors out.

My little princess whole-heartedly approves!

Quilt Stats
-Measures: 33.5 x 40.5 inches
-Made by: Me
-Quilted by: Ms. Reva Hill
-Binding is machine-stitched for added durability.
-Fabrics: quilt top: donation; back: minky from my stash
-Comes from a pet-free/smoke-free home

Auction Details:
Please place a bid in the "comment section" below. Please leave your name if posting as "anonymous."
-Starting bid: $75 (increase in $5 increments, minimum)
-100% of the proceeds go toward brain tumor research!
- Auction ends Saturday, March 16, 8 pm EST

Next auction will be an adult-sized throw quilt (see the sneak peek picture at the end of this post).
It begins Monday, March 18.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

"Patchwork at Play" has a new home!

And the winner is: Sarah Price for $155 !!!

I'm so appreciative of ALL the bids that we got for this sweet quilt.

Thank you so much for supporting Charlotte and brain tumor research!

(Sarah, I will send you an email shortly, detailing how to pay.)

"So long, little quilt.  You will be missed."

Please come back tomorrow for our next quilt - it's such a pretty one!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Patchwork at Play

It seems that I just cannot escape my love of patchwork.  Not yet, at least.  And so... this quilt is made with 320 adorable, little patches.  Let that sink in: three-hundred twenty.  (I did the math twice and double-checked with the husband.)  So...

Let's get straight down to business.  I'm starting the bids at $100 because (a quilt like this would cost at least $150 on Etsy and because) I am in love with this quilt.  Don't worry, the husband knows.  Even he said, "I like how you did the binding in orange."  (I did not know that he even knew the word "binding."  He sure knows how to woo, eh?)  And as for me, I've gone ahead and named it: "Patchwork at Play."  Yup, I really, really like it.

Why do I love this quilt?  Let me count the ways.  First, it is a mini version of the quilt I made for Henry's bed.  You see, I have two versions of my "how I got into quilting" story.  Here's version #1:

I started quilting because I couldn't find linens for Elyse (5) and Henry's (3) shared bedroom.  When we moved into this home about a year and a half ago, I started looking for bedspreads that were boyish and girlish but could go in the same room.  After scouring all my favorite catalogs, I came up with nothing.  Around the same time, one of my favorite illustrators/designers, Sarah Jane, came out with her first fabric line, Children at Play, and so began an ongoing obsession on my part.  I had a lightbulb moment, too: I would just make Elyse and Henry quilts for their beds, one from the girl fabrics and one from the boy fabrics.  And so I did.

One thing Tracy and I like to do is to find our kids in the prints.  For example, here is "Elyse" playing dollies... I turned that patch of fabric into a wall-hanging for her.

Well, one of the most popular prints in this collection is the large scale, children's parade.

I liked it so much that I asked my mom to make Charlotte's curtains out of it. Didn't she do a great job?

In recent months, it has brought me comfort to look at this fabric and to know that one day, Charlotte will be fully-healed (here or in heaven), and she'll be in this (proverbial) parade.  The other night, it finally came to me which character Charlotte is in these illustrations.  So, I shared this with my little girl:  "Charlotte," I said,  "right now, you're the one riding the pink elephant..."

Charlotte in her wheelchair for the very first time: February 2012.
She is physically delayed because the tumor has paralyzed her arms.          

"But one day, baby, you'll be the little girl who is waving the flags with both arms up."

One day, baby, one day.

Now this little one that is up for auction today came about because I had quite a few squares left over from Henry's bed quilt.  However, when I laid them out to see if I could make a crib quilt out of them, I found that I had enough, but that those squares would be too big.  So after a little cutting here and a bit of sewing there and making a few new squares from scratch, we've got this lovely little ditty.

This has a very nice weight to it because of all the patchwork.  I've not yet washed it, so don't worry, it will get that good, crinkly look once you do.  Let me show you some close-ups of the patchwork. (These finished squares are just over 2-inches small - perfect for little people!)

Playing "Rocket Launch Club"

"How to make a paper hat"

Chasing paper airplanes, rocket and radio, bicycle built for two

Come on... how adorable are these fabrics?  Quintessential childhood...

Charlotte likes it.

But not too much.

She knows she's a lady, and this one is for a little gentleman.

Quilt stats:
Back of the quilt
-Measures: 36 x 44 inches
-Made by: Me
-Quilted by: Me
-Binding is machine-stitched for added durability
-Fabrics: From my stash (the white is Kona
  cotton, and the prints are Sarah Jane for   
   Michael Miller)
-Comes from a pet-free/smoke-free home

Auction details:
Please place a bid in the comment section below. If you are posting as "anonymous," please be sure to leave your name in your comment.
 - Starting bid: $100, increase by $5 (minimum)
      (100% of proceeds go toward brain cancer  
 - Auction ends: Wednesday, March 13,
                          at 8 pm EST.

Don't forget to help us get the word out.
Post it to Facebook, pin it on Pinterest, etc.

Coming up: we'll do another little girl quilt this Thursday, so please check back then.

Our first "grown-up" throw quilt will open for auction Monday, March 18, so don't go away.  Just to whet your palate a bit, the quilt came in the mail this week.  It's a beauty....