Saturday, December 31, 2011

Iowa Comfort # 3

Here is quilt # 3.  Penny W pieced this beauty for the project.  The green batik fabric came from Deb G. all the way from Georgia.  The white fabric was from both Penny's and mine personal stash.  I just love this quilt, so simple yet so beautiful.  I hope to have it quilted yet this week.  Of course that means I'll need to get the label made for it.  Penny my brain has turned to mush.....please remind me what we named this quilt! LOL  I'm going to say that its because I have been sick that my brain is working right, okay so that might not be exactly true.....but it is my story and I am sticking to it.

Here is a close up of one block.  Such a simple design.  We used the same block through out the quilt, we just alternated the fabric placement for contrast.  Simply stunning.

Well until my next post........... thanks for all of your support!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

So Sorry!

It has been a while since I have been able to post.  Part of it was the holidays, but the biggest part was that I caught a nasty virus.  I have spent most of this week in bed.  I think today is going to be a better day....or at least I hope so.

Lets see where to start.  The first two quilts did get delivered to the center before Christmas.  The morning that I delivered them there was a lot going on so I didn't get to have a conversation with the staff.  I could tell that they had more pressing things that needed to be completed that morning, and it appeared to me that it was fairly urgent.  Hopefully next time I deliver quilts I'll be able to get to know them better.

Penny White has brought back the quilt that she pieced.  She took that really pretty batik green fabric that was donated by Deb G. home along with some white and made a beautiful quilt. I had hoped to have it quilted by now.......but that virus had other plans for me.

The De Soto Library called me about ten days ago and told me I needed to come and pick up fabric.  When I got there I had three grocery sacks of fabric to bring home.  Most of it is coordinating fabric, and I think we should be able to get several quilts out of it.

I promise not to be AWOL again for so long, and to get picks up of the new quilt and fabric donation really soon.

Until my next post.........

Thursday, December 15, 2011

the labels are on

Yesterday I spent the afternoon setting up my embroidery machine to make labels.  Oh how I hate to do that! 

I thought it would be so nice to have a machine that could do both the embroidery and straight stitch .....NOT!  I find it is a hassle to have to set it up, attach it to the computer, change all the settings every time I want a label.  A good friend of mine told me that I need to just use this machine for the embroidery, and go buy another machine, a smaller and lighter machine for open sew and community sew days.  I wonder if I actually did that, would I make my labels any quicker? But I 'm off topic...

I made three labels yesterday afternoon, one for my sons quilt, and one for each of the Iowa Comfort quilts.  While making the label for the first Iowa Comfort quilt, I ran out of thread.....made it to the very last line that documented when the quilt was made.  Actually had Nov. stitched and then I ran out of thread (did I mention I hate making labels?)  So I found the closest thread I could find to the original  color and finished the label.   Well we will just say that the label will have to be unique with two thread choices in it.

Last night while sitting in front of the TV, I stitched labels on the quilts.  I must have been really tired while doing it because I stuck my finger about 5 times!  Not to worry, I did manage to keep from bleeding on the quilts.

Since the labels are attached, the quilts are ready to be delivered.  This morning, after my morning walk and shower, I plan to deliver them.  I'm hoping that they will brighten someones day.

Until my next post......

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

And here they are

Here are the first two quilts going to the center this week. (as soon as I get the labels stitched on them)

Thank you Jan for piecing and binding the first one.

The second one was made from my scraps last year, and had not found a home yet.  Obviously it was meant to go to the center.

I have more donation fabric to show you all, but that will wait for another post.

My cats are telling me that they want fed.

Until my next post......

Sunday, December 11, 2011

The first quilt

The first quilt for Iowa Comfort is being bound today.  I did manage to get it quilted this past week, and it came off the longarm yesterday morning.  I was planning on passing it back to Jan for binding Monday when Circle of Friends meet in Adel.  

The plan changed when Jan happened across some really nice flannel, that she thought would make great backing material for a child's quilt.  So she picked up the phone and asked if we would ever be making smaller quilts.  I told her yes  and then shared that the first quilt was quilted.  Jan told me that she was going to be heading to Des Moines and wanted to know if she could go ahead an pick up the quilt last night.  That would give her time to bind it today and bring it back to me Monday night at Circle of Friends.  So that is what we did.

I have a quilt that I made last year, that has been patiently waiting for a new home that I am also going to donate to Iowa Comfort.  This quilt was also made completely from my scraps and I think it is very pretty. 

I plan to call the Center mid week and set up a time that would be good to bring these first two quilts to them.  Maybe they will brighten someones spirits.

I'll post pictures of both quilts, prior to their delivery.  Need to get those labels made.....

Until my next post......remember what we make with our hands, we give with our heart.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

The plan today

This is such a busy time of year for all of us.  I find that I have to make myself a schedule to get everything I want to do completed each day.

Today I want to finish quilting a customer quilt. Then load the quilt that Jan pieced together and get it quilted tomorrow.  I also am meeting with Penny and passing off the beautiful fabric from Georgia.  Last night at 10 I was trying to figure out the quilt top in EQ7.  Since I don't have to kit this one, I'm sending Penny home with the fabric and she gets to pick between 3 possible quilt tops.  All three would be beautiful that's for sure.  I have a couple of customer pick ups also.

Oh I also need to make a couple of labels for the first couple of quilts.  ( guess I'm going to steal the lap top for a while this afternoon). Maybe the next time my IT person is at my house I should have him load that program on to the desk top......note to self start making list for the IT kid!

Well I guess if I am going to get everything done today I better get to know I had a lot more time before I decided to walk on the treadmill everyday!

Hope everyone is well.

Until my next post........

Monday, December 5, 2011

Beautiful fabric from Georgia today

Today the postman delivered beautiful fabric to me.  It came all the way from Georgia.  I saw a post on Facebook that Deb G had some fabric that she no longer cared for and was looking for a good home.  I responded that I could put it to good use with our project.  Never in my mind did I expect to see fabric like this.....take a look.

This fabric is going to make one very gorgeous quilt.  As luck would have it Penny from quilt circle called this afternoon to see if I had a kit that she could work on.  I told her about this fabric and that the first thing I thought about when I saw it was stars.  I envision a white star with the teal background, next block teal star with white background and so on.  Penny has offered to pick up the fabric and do all the cutting on this project.

The generosity of quilters never cease amaze me.

Until next time....

Saturday, December 3, 2011

I should be quilting

Yes I have a quilt waiting for me in my quilt room....but I have to do this first! 

Last night Jan Mueller brought back the first quilt.  I was showing the kit and asking for suggestions at my Circle of Friends meeting a couple of weeks ago, and even thou the kit was not completely finished she took it home and pieced it together.  Take a look:

Here it is....or at least as much as I can fit in the camera frame.

Here is a close up of the fall border that was used in a project of mine about 8 years ago.

And here is a close up of the same fabric used in the corner stones.

Once I decided to use the focus fabric, I started pulling from my scraps trying to coordinate the colors of the focus fabric.  Most of the blocks are from left over fabric from a quilt that I made for my brother and from a quilt that I made for my son and daughter in law as a house warming gift.

I hope to have this quilt on the longarm within the next week.  Jan has offered to bind it for me also.
Thank you so much Jan for your generosity!  She even bought backing material for it.

I think it is going to brighten someones day just looking at it.

I have been thinking about how to document these quilts.  Do you think it would be okay just to document them as Iowa Comfort #1 (ect) pieced by Jane Doe quilted by Jane Doe and the month and the year?  I would really appreciate any suggestions on labeling this quilts.  I want to give credit to those that donated their time and talents, but I also want to make sure that we are being respectful of those who will be receiving them.  Please let me know what you think, either here or email me at

Until my next post.......keep warm

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Wanted to share

So I thought I would share some of the donations that I have received over the last week.

This fabric was donated by Jan Mueller, she thought it would make good backing material.  I think it might find its way into a quilt top also. Reminds me of crystal blue water that you might snorkel in.... must be thinking about vacations. LOL

I have always loved this fabric.  It was donated by Adel Quilting and Dry Goods.  Part of the backing that they have donated for our quilts.  They also donated the next two fabrics for backing material.

I have some child themed pieces that I think the green will go very well with, and the bottom fabric is probably going to be the backing for our brown project.  Speaking of the brown project....

Here is a sampling of the 35, 10 inch squares that have been donated.  Only seven more to go and this kit will be complete. 

Just wanted to thank everyone for their help, support and donations.

I have news on the first community sew day also.....but will post that later this week.

Until next time......

Monday, November 21, 2011

More brown fabric in the mail and some cream and rose fabric also....

Sorry folks didn't realize that it had been a week since I posted.  So much to catch up on.

I have received 31, brown 10 inch squares, in the mail thus far.  So we are just about 3/4 of the way on completing the brown quilt.  These squares have come from central Iowa, Ohio and Missouri.

The gal from Missouri told me that she didn't have a lot of brown fabric, so she started the next quilt with 20 squares of cream & rose  colored squares.  So that quilt is also about 1/2 complete at this point.

Makes my heart warm to see the generosity not only from central Iowa, but from around the United States.

Side note, for a while I had some one in Russia reading my blog.....that blew me away!  IF I get fabric from Russia I will really be blown away!

I attend a group called Prairie  Women's Sewing Group in Adel, hosted by Adel Quilting and Dry Goods, this last Saturday. I was delivering a finished quilt to a customer in the group.  Somehow we managed to start talking about this project.  She told me that she had 20 years worth of scraps that she had never had the heart to throw away.  Asked if she could donate it to the cause......I said YEP!  She lives up around Webster City, but told me that she would gather it all together and make the trip back down to Adel after Thanksgiving.

Shortly after that the lady setting to the right of me shared that her woman's group had already made some lap size and children's quilts for the local Crisis Center.  She explained that the group wasn't able to make anything larger, because they were unable to get them quilted.  I told her that if her group wanted to make the tops I would quilt them as long as they were going to the Crisis Center.  I love it when things come together.

I'm going to try to post pic's of the fabric squares that I have been receiving, probably won't be until after Thanksgiving.

Until I post again......thank you for all of your support!

Have a wonderful and safe holiday!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Brown fabric in the mail

It is a good thing that I am a former Postmaster and helped many of my fellow Postmasters.  I have started receiving brown squares of fabric in the mail. I did tell my Postmaster that I would get a separate box for Iowa Comfort if I started overflowing my personal box.  She just laughed at me and said "I thought you were retired?"  I responded "I am and I am having so much fun!"

So far I have received 10, 10 inch squares of fabric.  Some of it from as far away as Ohio.  With a note that said Ohio cares also.  :-)

I had someone ask if I was looking for pieced blocks or just a piece of brown fabric.  A 10 inch piece of medium to dark brown fabric is what I am looking for. 

Another follower was wondering if she could send several of the same fabric.  That is perfectly okay also.  Last week I cut a kit like this in blue and I have as many as 6 squares of the same fabric in it.

To make a twin size quilt, we are in need of 42 of the brown squares, so I guess we are a fourth of the way there.

I want to thank everyone who has sent squares for your help with this project.  I will make sure to post a picture of the completed quilt.

Until my next post......stay well!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

More generosity!

I love the response from our local community.  Adel Quilting and Dry Goods, my favorite quilt shop, has not only agreed to be a drop off site for scrap fabric but.......HAS DONATED BACKING MATERIAL for many of our first quilts.  How cool is that!

As of right now we have 4 twin size quilts kitted for our community sew day, which should be early January.  I'll have the exact day later this week.  Once we get the tops together I will get them quilted on the longarm and finished up.  I may have to have a friend at Quilt Circle show me how to do machine binding. LOL

I have had one follower suggest that once a month we put a call out for a 10 inch square in a certain color family.  She said that would be really easy to do, and simple to mail.  So I thought I would try it.  I've been watching the harvest the last several weeks and I have a vision of a brown quilt sashed in cream.  So if you have a 10 inch block of medium to dark brown fabric that you would like to donate to this project please do.  You can drop them off any of the drop sites listed above or mail them to:
Iowa Comfort
PO BOX 615
De Soto IA 50069

Until my next post.......thank you all for your support

Saturday, November 5, 2011

With friends like these

Yesterday I had a friend from my quilting circle bring me a quilt that she would like to have quilted.  We started talking about Iowa Comfort, and I attempted to show her some fabric.  Lets just say that I need to figure out a new system for storing fabric.  Once I found the fabric I was looking for, I asked Penny if she thought just large squares, sashed in a coordinating fabric would be the best use of the fabric.  She thought it would be ANDDDDD  she took the fabric home with her to kit it.

Also yesterday my Mom was out and about closing a mortgage in Ankeny.  The home had many quilts on display, so mom struck up a conversation about quilting with the woman.  Long story short, this woman is going to see if she can round up some scraps from her circle of friends for the cause.

And last but certainly not least, I spoke with my youngest son yesterday afternoon.  One of his coworkers also quilt.  In conversation he mentioned the project, his coworker was headed for a retreat I believe (just my guess from my son's description)  long story short she thought she might be able to talk to her group about supporting Iowa Comfort.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Answer to your question

I have heard from several of you.  You have asked how you can help.  I LOVE that you would like to help in this community project.....and believe me I want your help!

That being said I am also mindful that the holidays are fast approaching.  So I think I will set up our first community sew day for just after the first of the year.  Until then, I will continue to cut fabric so we will have things to sew that day.  Right now I have three twin size quilts ready to be sewn together.  Once the tops are completed I will bring them home and get them quilted and finished up for donation.

I envision the community sew days, with volunteers working in groups to complete a kit, we will need quilters, but I want everyone to feel like they can help.  Sew (pun intended there) if you don't sew but want to help, come on out and I'll put you to work ironing fabric or cutting fabric for another kit.

Another way you can help right now is by donating fabric....I'm not asking for you to go out and buy fabric.....I'm not even asking for your stash.....I'm thinking  of our your scraps from other quilting projects.  Those little chunks of fabric that was just big enough you couldn't throw it away......but not big enough that you know what to do with it.  Currently you can drop off fabric for donation at Adel Quilting and Dry Goods, and at the Perry Library (ask for Mary).  I hope to have a couple more drop offs in the near future.  Or of course you can email me and I will be glad to arrange for a pick up in the event of a large donation......see picture in previous post. :-)  You can email me at, or just leave a comment here.

Until my next post.....

Monday, October 31, 2011

Crisis Intervention & Advocacy Center

My goal with this project is to take the left over scraps from other quilt projects and make quilts of comfort, and try to keep the quilts within the local community.  I was fortunate enough to find a local organization that has a true need for these quilts.

Crisis Intervention & Advocacy Center is a local center providing essential services for victims of domestic and sexual violence and homelessness.  All of their services are free, voluntary, confidential and available to all without discrimination.  The center has two housing facilities for a total of 20 twin size beds, and several full and queen size beds.

As residents transition from the center to long term housing, the center helps provide the necessities needed to set up housekeeping.  So there will always be a need for the quilts.

I recently had a customer bring me a sack of scraps to use for this project….take a look at her generosity.

I have already cut two kits from this fabric, and identified several pieces large enough to be backing material.  I’m pretty sure that if I find the right pattern I will be able to cut at least 2 more twin size quilts.

Until my next post........

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Started working on some blocks

I have started working on my blue drawer.  Actually that drawer holds left over pieces of fabric from other quilting projects in the blue/ green color family.  My memory is beginning to fail......because I don't remember ever buying some of this fabric.  No worries though, I'm starting with a simple 9 patch for this quilt.  The blocks will be 9 inch finished in blue and white.  The corners and center of the 9 patch will be blue, white will fill in the rest of the block.  I'm sure that all of the different hue's of blues will make it a very pretty quilt when it is finished.  I think I am going to need 41 blocks to make a twin size quilt, with 40 offset white blocks.  Well at least that is what the math tells me right now,  we will see when I get it all layed out if the math was right.

Quilt #2 will be in purples.  The pattern that I found for it is called Lasagna by Terry Atkinson.  It will be a very quick quilt!  It is just 4 inch strips of fabric sewed together in varying lengths.  Think of the jelly roll races except you sew them together and chop at 54 inches.  I recently had a customer bring this quilt to finish for her.  I studied it for a REALLY LONG time trying to figure out the pattern.  Silly me the upside to this pattern is that there really isn't one, just cut fabric and sew.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Donation fabric

I had a customer call me yesterday and ask if there was any way I could quilt a lap size quilt for her before Nov. 1.  She told me that it was going to be auctioned off, for a local abuse shelter.  After hearing about what the quilt was going to be used for I told her that I would quilt it for her next week, and that I would donate my quilting services.  She immediately thanked me and quickly told me that she was willing to pay for my services.  I responded that I fully supported the work of the organization, and that I hoped to be making quilts from scrap fabric for a similiar organization close to my home.  The customer loved the idea, and has offered to bring some of her scrap fabric to help the cause.

I originally thought I would be making lap size quilts, and I will.  But the true need is for twin size to queen size quilts.  I need to get back to the drawing board and find patterns that will go together quickly and lend themselves to the scrappy look. 

Anyone know of any?

Monday, October 10, 2011

Found a home for our quilts

I just finished talking with a local organization that has a real need for quilts.  They are needed for warmth and comfort, and just to lift the spirit of those that are need of services. 

I am so excited to know that even if these quilts are scrappy they will go to individuals that will truly appreciate and value the time and effort put in to making them. 

The need is great, and several sizes of quilts will be needed. 

I can hardly wait to get started on a new project for them.  I'm hoping that I can organize a community sew day, and that we can get several tops completed in a day.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Time to cut fabric

Well today I started looking at free patterns.  I looked on line and found several that I think I can modify to lap size.  So tonight I am going through my scraps to see what I can kit up,  That way I will be ready to start sewing after I get my four commitments completed.  I have three  queens and a wall hanging to complete prior to starting on my charity quilts.  Good news is that there is a progress on that front.

In the mean time I have volunteered to quilt 2 quilts for a friend in northern Iowa.  She organizes community sew days  three or four times a year.  I'll throw them on the longarm and get them quilted next week for her.

There is also a group of woman who have been making baby quilts for the local hospitals. That I have extended my longarm services to. 

Sew (pun intended) I can start working on my project of charity quilts even if I am not quite ready to start sewing the tops. :-)

Sunday, October 2, 2011

About me

I am a retired Postmaster that loves to quilt.  I developed the habit just before my granddaughter Lexi was born.....geesh she will be 10 in a couple of months.  I think I have probably made over 75 quilts in those 10 years.  And when I was working for the Postal Service, quilting was my therapy.  If I got stressed out I would play with fabric for stress relief.

Recently I asked my dear husband to make another quilt ladder for me.  He asked why?  It really was a valid question considering that I have two built in quilt racks that hold 6 to 9 quilts, a quilt ladder and 4 quilt hangers on the walls.  I told him that I had ran out of room for storing my quilts.  His response is that it might be time to find new homes for them. And I will, I just have to find the right home for each of them.  You know when someone comes in and see's the quilt and their eyes light up.  That is when I know that the quilt will be loved, and more times than not I'll take it down and hand it to the person.....okay reality check, only if I really like the person and I am feeling generous that day. LOL

In addition to all of my quilts, I have TONS of scraps.  I learned really early that I did not follow directions well, and after a couple of times of not being able to find additional fabric, I ALWAYS buy more fabric than the pattern calls for.  Now I have 10 years of scraps.  I think they need to find homes too.  So Iowa Comfort was conceived.

I have donated many quilts for charities that end up going out of state.  I want to start a group that quilts with scraps for Iowa charities.  Not just kids, but wherever there is a need for warmth or comfort.

So my goal next year is to make 12 lap size quilts for Iowa charities from my scraps.  Is there anyone who would like to join me?