Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Monday, December 8, 2008

Completed 2009 MCC Blocks





I am long overdue on posting some of the completed MCC Blocks. For those of you following this blog, you know what this quilt is for. For those of you that are new, this is the second quilt that myself and 6 other ladies are making as a round robin. Last year we donated our quilt(see older posts)to the Mennonite Relief sale in Hutchinson, KS. This year the quilt is being done in pastel colors and consists of 4 fan blocks that will all face inwards, two crazy quilt blocks that are not fans and an 8 inch crazy quilt border that goes all the way around the six squares. The theme of the quilt is to do things on it that remind you of a Victorian Garden. Here are pictures of the 1st completed block. It is really going to be a stunning quilt!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Victorian Stitchery Retreat...Wow What Fun!


Well the retreat ended about a week ago and I was so tired after the retreat that I didn't feel human again until about yesterday! Yes, the rumors were true, I was so tired on Saturday that when I went to the bathroom I fell asleep for a moment. Here is a picture of the three teachers, myself and my friends Lori and Dixie. I think Lori is about to fall asleep in the picture! I couldn't have done the retreat without all of the people pictured. Thanks to the teachers for coming, thank you to the students that came and a BIG thank you to Lori and Dixie for all of your help! We are already planning next years retreat and I will keep you posted.

Val

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Victorian Stitchery Retreat...Here at last!

Well, the event I have been working on for the last 9 months will finally start tomorrow! Around 60 ladies from all over the United States are coming to take classes from Judith Baker Montano, Carole Samples and Betty Pillsbury. I haven't posted all month because I have been getting ready for the retreat as well as still teaching at my "shop". Tomorrow I will move my shop into the hotel we holding the retreat in as well as picking Judith and Betty up from the airport. Miss Carole will be driving in from Omaha. Check in will begin in the evening and I can finally put faces to all the names that I have seen during registration.

I will try to post pictures after the retreat is over. We will be having a show and share time, a crazy quilt name tag contest and the great UFO exchange. Now for the surprise that none of them know about. I have arranged with Piecemaker's to send me the quilt featured on their calendar this year. Not only that but they are also sending a beautiful crazy quilt they did about 10 years ago that features different kinds of birds.

I am sure I will be exhausted will it is all done, but it will be worth it because it is going to be so much fun! I will probably host another retreat next year and maybe those of you who couldn't come this year and come next year!

Talk to you next week,

Val

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Victorian Fancyworks Sampler Done!



I have finally finished my Victorian Fancyworks Sampler! Well except for any additional embellishing that I want to do to my monogram in the middle. Whew..that pattern was challenging and it really helped me to practice more difficult stitch combinations. I did enjoy doing it though.

See you later,

Val

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Campbell House-St. Louis, MO




As promised, here are the pictures I took of the inside of the Campbell House in St. Louis. I was fascinated with the story behind this house. The people that lived in this house, had thirteen children. They were very wealthy and had running water in their house. The water came from the river(is it the Missouri ?) and as a result, 10 of their 13 children died from either lead poisoning from the pipes or from the river. At the time, none of this would have been know...so they never really knew why their children were dyeing. The three remaining boys lived in the house after the death of their parents and NEVER changed anything. They loved their mother so much that they didn't want anything changed. This house is one of the few houses that has all of it's original furniture. One of the boys died 2 years after his parents and of the remaining 2, one of them had a bipolar disorder of some kind. Apparently they now know that it was due to the lead in the water that their mother drank while pregnant. Of course, he lived the longest and the house was willed to I think Harvard when he died. There was a lawsuit, because people in St. Louis wanted to preserve this house and when the furniture was auctioned off they all came...bought the furniture and put it back in the house. The house is restored to perfection! The museum has a website if you google it and want to read more about.

See you later,

Val

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Victorian Fancyworks Sampler Update




Many of you know that last year when Miss Carole came to Wichita to teach, she designed a brand new sampler just for us. If you look at one of my older posts, you will see the earlier stages of my sampler. It is now about 90 per cent done and I am for the most part happy with it. It is certainly not without errors but that's okay...very hard for a perfectionist like me to say! I don't know...I might redo the snowflakes, they are much bigger than Miss Carole designed them to be..I just don't know what happened there.

Now to explain many of the reasons that I have not posted for awhile. Early August I went to St. Louis on vacation. I will post later some pictures of a FANTASTIC Victorian house I went through. It always seems that crazy quilters also like to visit Victorian houses. They allowed pictures, so I will post at a later time.

Now for something that was more exciting than my vacation, was an unexpected trip to Colorado this last weekend. Okay, for one thing, it was more exciting than vacation because being the mother of 4 boys the trip was essentially a BOY TRIP and I had one little meltdown about it and that is why I insisted on the above mentioned Victorian House. This last weekend I found out that Christine Dabbs was teaching in Loveland Colorado and I was not going to go but with the generous urging of two of my friends and a very generous offer of one friend to babysit, off I went. It was absolutely wonderful and I felt that God guided me through the whole trip and I knew that he wanted me there. Here is a picture of her holding one of her UFO's, she says will never be finished. Her work is fantastic, awesome...whatelse can I say.

Okay, now for the unexpected bonus of the trip. The entire Hoffman Challenge entries were displayed and as I turned a corner...there was Betty Pillsbury's Peacock Wallhanging right there is front of me! So only did I get to see all of Christine's Dabbs many crazy quilts.. there is Betty's Wallhanging. It was wonderful. The reason I got so much done on my fancywork sampler is because I had alot of downtime and NO CHILDREN. I missed them but boy did I get alot done.

Well that's all for now,

Val

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Prom Dress Swap Purse



I had one comment recently that asked me to tell you more about the Omaha Crazy Quilt Convention. Soo...every year they have what is called the Prom Dress Swap. Everyone who wants to participate brings a prom dress (like from a garage sale or Goodwill). The dresses are all laid out on tables and at the count of three, everyone proceeds to cut the dresses up. Of course you must be polite and no matter how well you like a dress you should save some for the next person...Well that night after the swap we were all admiring our fabrics and an idea came to us. Why don't we make something for the Scholarship auction with the prom dress fabrics. So, I went through my fabrics the other day and came up with these two squares. I figure if I do one seam or open spot a week it will be ready for the convention next year. Oh.... and I have decided it will be a purse. Oh if it is too pretty well...I don't know what I will do!

See you later,

Val

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Back From Omaha!




I am so sorry that I haven't posted anything for awhile...I guess I became a little discouraged with what happened in the spring...but I am back! I just got back from the Crazy Quilt Convention in Omaha and everyone I was with had a wonderful time! I worked on my Victorian Fancyworks Sampler while I was there. That is the class that Miss Carole Samples came to Wichita last fall and taught us. I have only 3 more full seams to go and a few embellishers on two of the seams. The sampler has definitely been a challenge! We are busy working on our new MCC Quilt for next year and it is being done in pastels! Here is a picture of the beautiful stitching that has been done on a fan so far. The beautiful work in the corner has been done by Miss Lori of our group. Also here is a picture of my sampler in it's final stages!

See you later!

Val

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Needle Case Swap



As promised, here is a picture of the needle case that I received in the needle case swap I was in. Isn't it beautiful!!! It opens up like a fan and fans are one of my very favorite things! The fabric is a beautiful grey/blue brocade and the silk ribbon roses are hand dyed. There are even little roses embroidered on the tassel. Thank you so much for my beautiful needle case Barbara!

See you later,

Val

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

New MCC Quilt Block with Some Embellishments



Sorry I haven't posted for so long....it's not that nothing is happening around here! Here is a picutre of the latest MCC block that I had. This is the picture of it after I was done with it! I really like the bright pastel colors we are using. There will be only six blocks in this quilt, four fans, two regular squares and then an 8 inch pieced border. We mail the squares in cardboard mailing tubes to each other. I only hope that the long borders will fit in the tubes! The other picture is a Pretty in Pink Needle case. I was recently in a needle case swap in one of my Yahoo groups and this is the needle case that I sent to Barbara Blankenship. I will try to post the BEAUTIFUL needle case that she sent to me. I just love it!

See you later,

Val

Sunday, April 13, 2008

2008 MCC Crazy Quilt was a success!


Well, yesterday they auctioned off our crazy quilt at the MCC sale! All seven of us attended the event and there were many pictures taken of us with the quilt. I watched people stopping to look at the quilt and it was interesting. One group of ladies must have stood there 30 minutes or more looking at it. They then pulled back the plastic that was protecting it and began touching it and it looked like they were trying to find out how we tied it! Okay...my maternal instincts kicked in as you all know, I felt like the quilt was our group's little baby. I approached the ladies and told them I helped make the quilt but they still proceeded to touch and analyze. Oh well. Our quilt went for $1,350 and that made us feel really good. What made us feel even better is who the new owner of the quilt is. It is our own Miss Pat who is one of the 7 that helped make the quilt. You should have seen the grin on her face when she knew she won the quilt! We know that it is going to go to a good home where it will be loved and appreciated. We also decided that she can't come to the Victorian Stitchery Retreat unless she brings it along! Ha! Since there are 7 us, we also decided that we need to do this 6 more years so each of us can end up with a crazy quilt. We of course would have to be polite and not bid against each other! All in all it was a wonderful day. The naked block that you see here is the start of our new one for next year. I'll keep you posted again like I did last year on the progress of this quilt.

See you later,

Val

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Thank you so much!



I would like to thank all of you for your positive comments on my last post. I would especially like to thank someone who called me. I have not talked to you in a long time and I really appreciate the kind and supportive words that you left on my answering machine. I am sorry I was not home when you called.

Now, on to some better topics! Like my trip to New York City! Me and my girlfriend went to New York and had the best time! It was a business trip for me. We walked the garment district and I bought many new things for my business. I will have an open house April 26th showcasing all of the things I brought back. After that I will start posting the items on my website. It is probably something I will do once a year just to renew my supply and bring my customers new things every year. You cannot believe the walls of lace that you see at the stores in New York..it is like a whole new world.

We went to the Statue of Liberty...if that is not AWESOME. I would recommend you go, even though you wait for the ferry two hours..it is still worth it. Here is a picture of the Statue that I took from the ferry.

See you later,

Val

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

The Pink Bunny is Going To New York City!


I am getting pretty excited, for tomorrow I am going to New York City on a shopping trip for my crazy quilt website/business. I have alot things lined up to visit and hopefully I will come back with lots and lots of cool things to post on my website for all of you crazy quilters out there! It is less than a month until they auction off the MCC quilt that myself and 6 others made and wow...they put a picture of our quilt on the cover of the auction brochure! Over three hundred quilts are usually auctioned at this event and I feel quite honored and humbled. When I dropped the quilt off, I felt like I was giving away one of my children. So much work was put into it and it is just beautiful. I will keep you posted as to how much the quilt goes for. The classes for my Victorian Stitchery retreat are about 3/4 full and I am really excited about that event in the fall. While in New York I really want to see the Statue of Liberty and the Empire State Building. I am not sure about Ground Zero, I have heard there is really nothing to see there quite yet but..well we will see. Our hotel is right on Times Square and that will probably be quite an experience. I will post pictures when I get back.

See you later,

Val

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Crazy Quilt Cross


With the MCC coming up soon, it reminds me of the wallhanging that I donated last year. I have made two of these and still do not own one! For those of you new to my blog, I thought I would post another picture of it! The first one I made with a friend of mine and it sold for $750.00.
Wow! Will try to post more of the new projects that I am doing this spring at my shop in the next few days. The Lily of the Valley block that I posted has had an overwhelming response and I have ended up make three separate classes out of it so the classes wouldn't be so crowded. The Victorian Stitchery retreat is coming along and all of the classes are about 3/4 full.

See you later,

Val

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Victorian Stitchery Retreat

This week I have sent out around 120 invitations to a Victorian Stitchery Retreat that I am hosting. I am very excited about this retreat. For the past two years I have hosted Carole Samples and both times everyone had a wonderful time. This year I am going to host a larger retreat. The teachers for the retreat will be Carole Samples, Judith Montano and Betty Pillsbury. The retreat will be here in Wichita, Kansas November 6, 7, and 8th. The classes are already 1/2 full but if you are interested, you may email me for more info. I can hardly wait for the retreat to come!

See you later,

Val

Friday, February 15, 2008

Return of Happiness

I don't usually post to many things that I am teaching currently, but I really like this project. It is a square that I am teaching this spring. It is a lily of the valley square. Lily of the valley meant a return of happiness to the victorian women. I was inspired to do this block, because of the lily of the valley trim and button that I had purchased from Susan Clarke.

See you later,

Val

Monday, February 4, 2008

MCC Quilt is Done and More to the Story!


Well, the journey with our MCC crazy quilt for 2008 is almost done. It has been quite a week for me and finally I have time to tell you about it. I decided we needed a calendar for this quilt since we are giving it away to charity and we probably won't ever see it again. The members of the group who have seen the quilt completed have been quite moved. It is just beautiful! Last week our group was contacted by some women on the MCC team in charge of the quilt sale. This year is the 40th anniversary of the MCC sale and they had already chosen a traditional quilt to commemorate it. When they saw the pictures of the crazy quilt that we are making on my blog, they decided that our crazy quilt would be chosen as a non-traditional quilt to commemorate the 40th anniversary. To say I was moved even to tears was an understatement. For me this quilt was just something I have wanted to do for several years. The 7 of us became closer through this experience since the quilt was done as a round robin. For me the quilt was done to help MCC and give God the glory. The quilt will be auctioned in April at the sale in Hutchinson, KS.

Back to my calendar story. I didn't know that getting nice pictures of a crazy quilt to publish was a task. I had a couple of friends try to take pictures and even with using Photoshop they were marginal at best. So...last Thursday, there was a bad storm in Wichita, and it occurred to me that the local professional photography place..would not be very busy! Sure enough, I had 4 photographers helping me for over an hour. The pictures are beautiful! The proceeds from the calendar are going to help us make another crazy quilt for 2009. You may purchase these calendars from my website at www.valeriebothell.com

Saturday, January 19, 2008

How to Inside Tie a Crazy Quilt-Pictures





As promised, here are some pictures of my quilting group inside tying the crazy quilt that we are donating to the MCC Quilt Sale. You can see how we have the quilt folded over and are tying the knots on the inside of the quilt.

See you later,

Val

Saturday, January 12, 2008

All of the Rest of the MCC Blocks




Well, I have all 12 of the MCC blocks and I am going to sew them together today! So here are the final pictures of all of the squares. We have such a talented group of ladies and they did a beautiful job! It has been a wonderful experience sewing these blocks together and who knows, maybe we'll decide to do it again next year. All the corners of the fans were done by one particular member to keep them all consistent and they are also beautiful. Thank you to all of the ladies that helped. Enjoy the eye candy!

See you later,

Val

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

How to Inside Tie a Crazy Quilt

A couple of days ago, I said that I would be taking the crazy quilt that we made for the MCC sale to our quilting group at church and they would help me inside tie it. Susan has asked me what that is....so I will try to describe to you how to do it and if I remember, when we tie it next week I will take pictures.

To inside tie a quilt what I do first is pin my backing fabric to the floor(right side of fabric facing down)..the fabric should be cut to the size you want it to be. I make my backing fabric large enough to make a self bound quilt. When pinning the fabric to the floor measure both diagonally, vertically and horizontally to make sure everything is square. The reason I want to do the quilt at church for this quilt is they have large quilting frames that we can pin it to instead of the floor..plus I'll get lots of help. Then I lay my crazy quilt on top of that right side up. Make sure the crazy quilt is centered or placed where you want it on your backing fabric. I then take very large safety pins and pin vertically down the exact middle of the quilt. I fold back one side lets say the right side...fold it back all the way to the safety pin. I take a needle threaded with strong thread(pearl cotton #5 or #8) and I take a very small stitch of both the backing fabric and the front...don't pull the thread all the way through. Tie a nice strong knot in the middle of the quilt between the two layers. Clip the ends of the threads to...maybe 1/2 inch. That's all there is to it work your way down vertically tying where it will be seen the least and as often as you feel is necessary. Fold your quilt top back out and pin down vertically over to the next spot that you want to tie. Keep doing this until you have worked to the outside edge and then start on the left side doing the same thing. If you have any questions don't hesitate to ask me and really I will try to post pictures of the process when we do it next week.

See you later,

Val

Monday, January 7, 2008

You Make My Day Award


Candi has tagged me and given me the You Make My Day Award. The rules of this award are to list 10 people's blogs that you love to look at! I don't know if I have 10 of them but here are my top favorites!

Julia- creativeribbons.blogspot.com
Melissa-honeybeesbliss.blogspot.com
Catherine-calidore.wordpress.com
Debbie-needle-lil-more-time-2-sew.blogspot.com

That's all I can think of for now!

See you later,
Val

Saturday, January 5, 2008

MCC Block Number 8




Well here is another completed square for the MCC crazy quilt we are making. I have 11 blocks turned in and ready to stitch together. We are doing 12 altogether, so we are really close! In the next week or so, I will start sewing the squares together. The ladies in my quilting group at church have agreed to help me tie the quilt. We are going to inside tie it and it is easier to do on the big frames at church. Enjoy the new eye candy and I will try to post the other 3 squares that I have that I haven't shown you. The deadline to turn this quilt into MCC is in March, so I am kinda of getting nervous about getting it done. It is hard to believe that we started this project 10 months ago. It has been wonderful working with other other 6 ladies in the round robin to make this quilt and their creativity and imagination on these squares is awesome. Their generousity in the things they stitched on this quilt on awesome too...Enjoy!