Monday, March 31, 2014

March Meeting Photos

If you missed the March meeting you can catch up with show and tell through this slide show.

Created with flickr slideshow.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Country School Quilters
Blood Drive
In Honor of Iris Jacobs
Saturday, May 31st
9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Hanover County Park and Rec Building 
next door to the Montpelier Center For Arts & Education
at 17205 Mountain Rd., Montpelier, VA

To schedule an appointment go to:

For questions contact Phyllis at (804)749-8373

Monday, March 17, 2014

Date change for June meeting

Due to the Montpelier  Parks & Rec. building being used for voting, our June meeting scheduled for June 10, has been moved to the following Tuesday night, June 17 at 6:30 p.m.
Be sure to mark this change on your calendars!

Saturday, March 15, 2014

9-Patch Star

Our block for March is based on a disappearing 9-patch, although we made it into a Star!
We'll be making this as a quilt (or two) for a veteran. Fabric squares were passed out at the meeting along with the sewing directions. If you didn't get the fabric and want to make blocks, just let me know and I will mail them to you. All blocks have the same fabric in the center and we are also providing some of the red and blue fabric. Please read information in the box at the bottom. We hope to get a coordinated scrappy look for the star blocks.

Please remember, the blocks are due at the next meeting - April 8.

Friday, March 14, 2014

Cleaning OLFA Mat

While talking to the OLFA dealer at the Mid-Atlantic Quilt Show a couple of weeks ago I learned that you can extend the life of your OLFA blade by hydrating your cutting mat!  Who knew that a "dry" mat dulls the blade!?!

The vendor, Charlie, was full of helpful information and did some great demos. OFLA tools are some of the best, and it's nice to get some inside tips on how to care for them. He also told us how you can renew a mat that has been warped (see his website if you need that info).

Here is a photo of the printed instructions he was giving out for wet cleaning your cutting mat.

Monday, March 10, 2014

10 Questions - Julie Van Den Elzen

We kid Julie a lot about all of the fabric that she buys. She has a MFB (Masters of Fabric Buying) degree. But the truth is that she's incredibly prolific and uses all that fabric that she buys. Let's get to know her better this month.

Julie doing what she does best!

1. If you live in Hanover (or the area), how many generations of your family have lived here and how did they come to settle here? If you moved here, where are you from and what brought you here?

I was born in Wisconsin and lived there for 19 years until Chris and I married in 1986.  Chris was offered a job out of school and given the choice to live in New York or Virginia, never being out east when I thought of New York I thought lots of people, so I said Virginia and that's where we went.  It was a whirlwind weekend, I took care of all the major changes in my life at one time, getting married, leaving home and leaving the state.  We married on Saturday, said our goodbyes on Sunday, packed up and left on Monday morning for Virginia.  We've moved a couple times in apartments then finally built our house and settled here in Montpelier in 1992.

2. When you were young what did you plan to be when you grew up and what happened with those plans?

When I was younger I looked into going to beauty school, I don't think it was called cosmetology back then.  Then life took over and I started working office jobs.  When we moved here I worked in an office until my daughter, Megan, was born.  A few years later, I was introduced to a lady that was making and selling children's clothing.  So I started sewing children's clothes and was able to stay home with my girl.  I was then lucky enough to find another job at home, doing data entry, which lasted a few years until Jacob went to pre-school.  I enjoyed myself so much helping out there that they offered me a job working in the classroom, then moved into an office job there.  I was there for almost 10 years and found myself moving on yet again.  This took me to Pawscienda Pet Resort right here in Montpelier.  I love working with the animals and their "parents" but found the hours were keeping me away from my family way too much.  So I was going to leave but we worked out a deal and I now go in to take care of a few things one day a week and fill in if I'm needed.  Well, I guess you could say that I'm still trying to figure out what I would like to do.

3. What’s your favorite meal?

My favorite meal is any meal that I don't have to cook :-).  I am very lucky in that my husband likes to cook and takes care of it when he is home.  When he's gone, I live on leftovers from our great meals he has cooked.  Although sometimes I like to surprise him and cook something different.

4. What hobbies or activities do you do other than quilting? Where do you do them? How did you get involved with them?

Reading, baking, knitting, a little crochet, cross stitch, painting crafts, I Love to try everything.  I actually have a wonderful room that can accommodate everything that I do.  Although I believe it was much bigger when it was built than it is now.  It's true the more space you have the more stuff you collect.

5. What’s your favorite vacation spot? Where do you want to go next?

Really the only vacation we take is to go back to Wisconsin to visit with the family.  However, our children have introduced us to the beach.  We never really enjoyed the beach, but now find it relaxing.  Walks on the beach, watching Chris fish while I read and reconnecting with our kids.  Neither Chris or I have been up to Maine for a vacation, that would be one place I would like to go to.  I hear there are some nice quilt shops up there.

6. What saying best describes how you like to live your life?

I pretty much take one day at a time for the most part.  

7. Show us a photo (or photos) of where you create.

My room is stuffed full of all the projects that I have collected.  I am determined to finish what I have and minimize my purchases.  Chris is handy enough to build my cutting table, pressing table and cabinets, although I'm still waiting for bookshelves.  Having so much stuff, I find that I'm always looking for a better way to organize it.

An overall look at my room, I love my cutting table built a little taller for me, my rulers right behind me close enough to grab what I need, and a flannel wall at the back,  

My sewing area, I use my Pfaff sewing machine for most of the sewing.  An embroidery machine which I just dusted off to start an machine embroidered applique Christmas quilt, and a serger from my clothing making days.

This is my pressing area.  I purchased a big board, then Chris built the storage unit to put underneath.  I has a large pressing area and is very sturdy.  I put this on the opposite side of my sewing station so I must get up and walk around to get that "exercise".

I couldn't resist putting my fabric guard "Emma" in here.

Okay, so here's the real story, I pretty much cleaned up to take pictures of my space, now here's the rest. . .  You know the saying "She who has the most fabric, wins!"  Do I win???

8. Show us a photo of the quilt that’s on your bed right now.

Actually there are two quilts on our bed since it had been so cold.  The first is a BOM that I did from Keepsake Quilting, and on top for the added warmth is a rag top flannel quilt that I put together.

9. What quilt is your least favorite quilt. Not necessarily the ugliest but the one that you liked the least or struggled with the most or just plain hated making. Why did you choose this one? Do you have a photo of it?

I don't know if there is a least favorite, but usually when making a quilt about halfway through, I get tired of looking at it and don't think that it will ever be done.  I do find that with each quilt I make there is at least one lesson to be learned in the process, and all the ladies in Country School Quilters are very helpful in that process.

10. What is your all time favorite quilt and why? Do you have a photo of it?

Again, I don't have a favorite quilt either. I am very happy when I finally get one done, but have not had that feeling of never wanting to let it go.  I hope to work on many more quilts and maybe will find that one special quilt for me. 

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Sewing - March 7 & 8

Our Friday sewing day started with freezing rain and sleet - more of the miserable winter weather that just doesn't want to go away!  Before the tables filled up I thought it would be nice to show off our wonderful sewing room, which is actually a small building that years ago was the lunch room at the Montpelier School.  It is light and bright and a perfect sewing room provided to us by Hanover County Parks and Recreation.

The restrooms and kitchen are at this end of the room. Can't you just imagine all the children that went to the serving window to get their tray of food?  The room has a wonderful feel to it.
Julie got busy sewing together her Disappearing 9-Patch blocks -
 inspired by a quilt made by Carole.
All batiks are from Julie's stash - no repeats. It is for a veteran. 
Julie has lots of projects and pieced 5 blocks for this quilt:
Nancy's quilt is also for a veteran.
Georgie stitched a lovely fabric bowl.

Sandy and Linda worked together cutting strips for a "Take Two" quilt.
Carol got busy cutting fabric and a few hours later produced this
quilt for a veteran.
She added top & bottom borders after I took the picture.
Estelle continues to work magic with a bag of donated
pieced triangles to make veterans quilts. This is quilt #2.
By the end of the day she had doubled the blocks shown in this picture.

Becky's on-going Friday/Saturday project is paper piecing 6" blocks.
Union Square was our January Block of the Month and we have another veteran's quilt top.
The blocks look great together and it's ready to go to Vicki for machine quilting.

Shaded 9-Patch was our block for February and look how many have been made.
Thank you for making blocks each month.
Please REMEMBER to bring your blocks on Tuesday. 

I know we are all keeping Iris and Deb in our thoughts and prayers.
The MRI/Scans this week were reason to rejoice - let the prayers continue.
(Our April 8 program will be a "project" for Iris)