Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Gifts from Wanda

A couple of weeks ago while I was at Open Sew, Wanda H wandered over and asked me the question I get asked more than any other question.  "Do you have certain requirements for your quilt donations?"  The answer to that question is NO I can find the appropriate home for any and all quilts that are donated to Iowa Comfort.

Wanda told me that she had recently surveyed her quilts at home, and she had a few that needed to find new homes.  Now at the time I thought we were talking quilt tops....but I was PLEASANTLY surprised when I found out they were completed quilts!  

By the way while I am thinking about it, thank you Celia for accepting these quilts for me on the second day of Open Sew, and delivering them to me at our quilt meeting.  I really appreciate it.

Each and everyone of these quilts were different, and I loved them all.  Take a look.

 The first quilt is a jelly roll quilt, in deep and rich colors.  A wonderful way to use up those end pieces of yardage from previous projects.

I sat and stared at this quilt for quite some time.  It reminded me of a quilt that I might find on Bonnie Hunters blog. Scrappy four patches and half square triangle units.  And I love it!  And I am a little ashamed to tell you it took me longer than it should have to figure out the pattern.  I was trying to hard, depending on which section I was looking at....I would see a different pattern.  Those are really my favorite types of quilts! 

Isn't this quilt darling! Funny thing about this quilt is that even though it is predominately blue, brown and white.  The quilt reads little girl to me....not little boy.  Which is perfectly okay because we have a need for both. Maybe it reads girl to me because of the pink star burst in the brown fabric.... I don't know.  It was just odd that it struck me that way..... but then again it could just be me.

I really like this quilt also! Another scrappy quilt, this one is alternating 4 patches and rail fences with sashing. I love the randomness of the color placement, and the fact that the rail fence blocks are not uniform in size.  What ever size the strip so be it.  I have drawn a pattern up of this quilt...  and I can see it being used in future quilts to use up some of my scraps.

Thank you so much Wanda for donating these quilts to Iowa Comfort.  They will be delivered on my next delivery which should be mid February.

Hope everyone has a wonderful week!  See you all on Saturday.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Such generous friends.

 Lennie and Fonzie have been really busy this month.  They have quilted 9 Iowa Comfort quilts, and 5 other quilts for customers.  

Next week we have 3 quilts scheduled to be completed, a quilt for Iowa Comfort, a comfort quilt for a lady that has entered hospice, and the last quilt is one that I have had on my Get R Done list for the last two years.

With all of this quilting going on for Iowa Comfort, there is also a whole lot of binding going on.  I spend most of my evenings sitting in front of the TV, hand stitching the binding down on a quilt.

Monday night at my quilt meeting, Celia R offered to bind a quilt a month for me.  We both attend Open Sew on the second Friday of the month in Adel.  She told me to make sure and bring a quilt along each time for her to bind.

Nancy H. has also offered to bind for me (many times) and I took her up on her offer and passed a quilt to her.  She is going to have to fix my binding strip that  I had prepared.  As I went to iron it prior to taking the quilt to her I realized that I had sewn half of the strips one way, and the other half the opposite way.... the result being half of the seams were on the top, and half of the seams were on the bottom....  Sure that will work.... NOT!  Ah well it is great to have friends that you can share your mistakes with.  She'll just cut that section out and flip over the fabric and all will be well.

Take a look at this donation from Nancy H's. mother Donna.  Donna doesn't quilt but she does knit, and she has a lot of yarn that she want's to use up.  So she is making these for us to donate.

I can not tell you how warm, soft and snuggly it is!  I can tell you that I have to keep it in a plastic bag in a locked tub...or Mork and Mindy try to claim it as their own.  It took me three tries to get this picture, and it was only accomplished after locking them out of the room.

Thank you Celia, Nancy and Donna! 

I have more donations to share with you all, so make sure to come back on Tuesday and Saturday. Enjoy you weekend.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Mark you calendars

We have our first Iowa Comfort sew day set for the new year!  

It will be  March 2, from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm, in the conference room at the Adel Library again.

This year I will only be hosting 2 of these, the second will be late fall, whenever I can get the room at the Adel Library.

We have several small kits to work on, if time permits we may make some pillowcases, or we may cut and piece backings for the kits.

So I would very much appreciate it if you have the time on that day if you would come and help us out.

We are off to a smashing start already this year!  Last night I picked up 5 completed quilts at my quilting meeting and I have 8 that are in various stages of completion now.

With the help from all of you, it is going to be a great year!

I'll post more details about the community sew day in a couple of weeks......but I hope to see you there.

Stay warm everyone!

Pic's on Saturday!

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Time to quilt again

Many of you know that I fund Iowa Comfort by quilting for customers.  The money that I receive for my quilting services buy backing and batting for the Iowa Comfort Quilts.  

The busiest quilting season is usually from mid September to mid December.... so I concentrate on customer quilts during that time frame.  Donations did not stop though, and with Christmas season over I have been working hard to get caught up again with my finished quilt tops.  I currently have 7 small Hope quilts ready to be quilted and 6 twin to double size quilts to be quilted.  LIFE IS GOOD!

The last couple of weeks I have quilted 8 quilts.  I am going to show you the first three today, because they are completely finished and will be ready for donation.

ICQ# 66


The fabric for these two quilts were donated by Deb S. from northern Iowa.  Last September my local quilt group, "Circle of Friends"  from Adel spent our meeting night helping cut and kit 35 of these little kits.  About a fourth of the kits have been given out to people who wanted one; but couldn't make it to our last community sew day...or didn't want to wait for our next sew day.  (BTW it is on the books....more info on it next week).  I can't tell you who pieced these beyond a shadow of a doubt, I think Carol and Kathy might have pieced these two.  I can tell you that it wasn't me....cuz I failed to follow instructions correctly and my rows do not stair step like these do.

ICQ 68

This top (along with 6 others) was delivered to me from my friend Marica B.  The quilts were donated to Marcia's charity sewing group by her friend Joann H.  Joann's sister, Janis had recently passed away and Joann came across theses seven tops while settling her affairs.  Unfortunately for Marcia's group the size was to large for them to finish, so Marcia sent them down to us.  They are just the right size for a twin size bed.

I was very fortunate that Celia M. volunteered to bind this one for me at open sew last week.  Actually she volunteered to bind three...but I just couldn't monopolize that much of her time. 

It wasn't until I took this picture that I noticed the setting of the blocks.  To me it looks like flying geese, traveling from one corner of the quilt all the way around.  I don't think I have ever seen this setting before, but I like it a lot.

Thank you one and all for your help!  I hope you have a great weekend!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Mid January review and a few snippets of info

It is hard to believe that we are already 15 days into January!  So I took a moment to look back at my resolutions, and I am pleased that I have not broken any of them as of yet. I also have not done anything with trying to become a recognized NP.  I may have to call my Aunt (she has a law degree but no longer practices law) to see if she can help.

I have done much better with keeping my time keeping & material records on the quilts.  I created a tracking sheet that stays with the quilt, and once the quilt is complete I input the data into a computer program.  Works pretty well if I do say so myself.

So far this year I have quilted  Iowa Comfort Quilts #66, 67, 68, 69, 70 and 71.  I should be able to get two more quilted this week also.  Quilts 66, 67 and 68 are already bound, and I am working on binding # 69.  It will not take long to bind 70 and 71 as they are both hope quilts. 

These 8 quilts will probably be all that I get done this month.  I have a class for two days next week...and the following week I have blocked out for one of my own quilts.

Later tonight I will be attending the De Soto city council meeting and presenting a quilt for use in the first responders vehicle or the city cruiser.  Additionally I will be telling the council about Iowa Comfort and the mission statement...so they will know that we are a possible resource for comfort, should they be made aware of a need.

Late last year I received a generous donation to Iowa Comfort.  It came from the gentleman that requested the quilt for the little girl battling cancer.  With that donation I was able to order a bolt of backing material and a bolt of batting.  Thank you so much for your generosity, it will allow us to continue helping others.

I will try to get pictures up of the completed quilts on Saturday, along with tell you how they came to Iowa Comfort.

Enjoy the rest of your week!

PS I think sometime this week this blog will have 10,000 hits.  I know it is silly of me to watch such things....but I can't help but smile, and think how much we have accomplished in the past 15 months.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Open Sew

I really enjoy going to open sew at the Adel library once a month.  I like everything about it, but mostly I like being with other people that understand how I feel about quilting.  Now I will admit that there is as much show n tell going on as there is sewing...but even that fuels my inspiration.

This year I am taking advantage of the space that is available at Open Sew to do some of the bigger projects for Iowa Comfort.

Yesterday I took a throw, twin and full size quilt and applied the binding to each of the  tops.  So much easier to do it there.  My sewing table at home butts up to two walls, so at home there is a lot of stuffing and fluffing.  At open sew there are no obstructions and as I feed the quilt through the sewing machine, it just fall off the edge of the table and gravity helps feed the quilt. 

AND LUCKY me, after I got the binding applied to the first top... the quilting fairy came to visit.  Celia took the top and machine stitched down the binding for me!  Can I get an OOHH AAHH! (oops wrong group) but suffice it to say that I was one happy camper.  She even volunteered to do the other two...but I just plain felt guilty about that.  I do need hand work to keep me busy at night or I fall asleep at 8:00 and then I am up at 3:00 am.  Fonzie is just a little noisy at that time in the morning. :-)  

The rest of the day was spent piecing backings together for future Iowa Comfort quilts.

Over the last year I have saved the left over pieces from previous backings.   I spent the afternoon squaring those pieces up, marrying them to a similar fabric and creating a backing that I can use on those Hope Quilts that we kitted back in September.  I managed to piece together the first 10 backings.  We have about 25 of those little tops ready to put together and I want to make sure that I am ready to quilt them once they are put together.

It was a productive day and more important is was a fun day!  I needed to be around the hum of other productive people.  

Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Delivery to DHS

Now I will show you the rest of the quilts that were delivered on New Years Eve.

All of these quilts went to the local DHS office.  The social workers will hand them out as needed.  My hope is that a child in crisis will find these little quilts comforting, and snuggle up in them and know that someone was thinking about them.
This quilt was made with donated fabric from Deb S.  Nancy H pieced, quilted and bound it for us.  I think we made about 35 kits using fabric that was donated to us in this pattern. I am going to have to be careful when we deliver these.  All 35 kits have a lot of pink in them.... kind of a girl feel if you now what I mean.  I want to try to deliver equal amounts of boy/girl quilts when I make deliveries.  So I see more kitting in my immediate future.

Speaking of boy quilts it doesn't get any better than this quilt donated by Lynne M. chopper motorcycle t shirt quilt.  Love the bright colors in this one and just the right size for a little guy to cuddle up in.  The backing was that yellow and orange flame in the lower right block.  I can see the smile already, on the little boy that gets it.

This quilt could be given to either a boy or a girl.  Penny W. put two of these tops together for us.  The second one wasn't quite ready for delivery when this one went.  Penny said she took a block and blew it up to make the quilt 40 X 40.  Penny is one clever gal!

And then there are these three quilts.  Do you remember that sack of flannel that we got from Ruth Ann? In case you don't here is a reminder.

Ruth Ann loved flannel, and she was getting ready to make some rag quilts with the blocks in the bottom picture.  I had never made rag quilts before... so there was a learning curve for me.  I did manage to get all of the blocks used and three little quilts made.  They are OOHH SO SOFT, but don't look to close... I did a really poor job with block placement on one of them.  I don't think the child that receives the quilt will mind much though.

Last week Fonzie and I worked on customer quilts, so this week is Iowa Comfort quilts.  

Everyone have a good week! Enjoy the warmer temps.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

New Years Eve Delivery to the center

Early Monday morning I loaded  my car up, and set out to make deliveries. These are the quilts that were delivered to the center.

This quilt was donated by Jacque J.  She put it together from strip exchange from one of her retreats. It had warm cozy flannel on the back.

 This quilt is called Yummy. It was pieced, quilted and bound by Pat. I love donations like this, makes it so easy to get them into the hands that need them.

 This quilt had some wonderful turquoise print fabric in it.  We made simple nine patches, and we ran out of the focus fabric so we had to make do with  a few blocks that matched colors in the focus fabric.  Deb S. worked on this quilt top at one of the Charity Sew days.  It finished queen size, and the hope is that it will be on one of the family beds at the center.

 Marcia B. and her group of volunteers pieced and donated this quilt top. So very soft and pretty. Trisha S. donated a whole bolt of the backing that I used on it.  And when the quilt was delivered  several of the staff commented how much they liked the colors in the quilt and backing material in this quilt.

 This was the last quilt delivered, is pretty much the mirror image of the black quilt above with just a different color way.  Jacque J donated the pink charms, Deb S and I donated the background fabric.  The majority of this quilt top was pieced at a charity sew day by Angie O.  It turned into one of my favorites so I thought I would spend a little extra time on the quilting with a new pattern.

The quilting was anything but perfect on this quilt, but I still think it is a beautiful quilt!

The staff at the center tell me that each and every quilt finds a home very quickly, either on one of thier beds or when they help set up housekeeping for a client that is transitioning from their facility.  They asked that I thank you all for your hard work.  

I'll show the quilts that went to DHS on Tuesday, so make sure to come back.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy New Year!

Hard to believe that it is 2013 already!  Even harder to believe that I have been retired for a little over 3 and half years now. My how time has flown these last several years.  I am still trying to figure out why retirement seems to pass twice as fast as time did when I was working.

Since it is a new year, it is time to make some resolutions or changes.  So here they are:

1. I will try to do a better job of updating the 2013 photo gallery. I hope to have every donated quilt in the photo gallery this year. (I missed 6 last year)

2. Only pics of finished quilts will go in the gallery.

3. With a STRONG suggestion from law enforcement, our labels will be altered to :

ICQ # (insert number)

Pieced and quilted by 
friends of Iowa Comfort


4. On the blog I will only be posting your first name and the first initial of your last name.

5. I must demonstrate self discipline and do my paper work in a timely fashion. Including the donations to the dog shelter.

6. I will look into becoming a recognized Non profit by the state of Iowa.

Resolution 3 will actually make it easier to get the labels on the quilt. My hope is to have several made up in advance, and actually attach it to the backing prior to quilting.

Resolution 5 & 6 may be the hardest for me... with 6 I have to create a board of directors... that has always stopped me dead in my tracks before.

So there they are!  I am hoping that these will not be like my other New years resolutions... and that I will stick to them all!  Only time will tell.

Yesterday I made deliveries to the Center and to DHS.  I'll have pics of the quilts for each delivery in the next two posts.

Thank you all again for your support! I know that without your help, donations and support this would not have been possible.

This past year we delivered 65 quilts to the local community.  One to law enforcement, one to a little girl battling cancer, 18 to the Dallas/Madison county Dept. of Human Services and 45 to the Crisis and Advocacy Center.  

We also donated many mats and pillows for our four legged friends at Aheintz 57 shelter.