Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Jill's Strips n' Curves Quilt

Jill Bunis sent me this photo of her "first" quilt.  It seems that this was an on-again-off-again project that took her 5 years.  Well, it was worth the wait!  Jill was excited when she posted this on a message board and Louisa Smith (author of the Strips n' curves books and designer of the templates) commented on it.  She says it's the quilt that sparked her passion.  I've just discovered Jill's blog and I've become a follower.  It's chock full of eye candy!  Her selvage valances are amazing!

Jill gets lots of entries in the Holiday Giveaway- she commented, follows my blog, told her own blog readers about my goodies and sent me a picture!

I've had a lot of comments and entries in the giveaway and lots of readers have taken advantage of the blog special of 25% off the templates.  A few have asked me if NEW blog followers count- OF COURSE they do!  And one asked me if I accepted international entries- ABSOLUTELY!  I'm always happy to know that quilters around the world are reading.  I received calls from 2 wonderful Canadian quilters today.  I'm thrilled that they are new customers.

Thanks, again, for sending us a picture of your fabulous quilt, Jill!!!  And good luck in the giveaway drawing.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Holiday Giveaway

This is a short one- just running 11 days. I'll draw the winner on New Years' Day, so be sure to get your name in by New Years' Eve.

The draw is for Jennifer Chiaverini's book, "The Runaway Quilt", and 5 VERY colorful fat quarters. I had to take a second picture of the FQ's spread apart because they all blended together in the first picture! Pair these with some "quieter" fabrics for a striking project!

If you're not familiar with Jennifer's books, they are novels about the very gripping lives of a fictional group of quilters. Very popular!

For one entry, comment on this post and just tell me you want to be entered. If you don't like to comment on blogs, just send me an email.
You will receive a second entry if you are a follower of this blog.
You will receive a third entry if you have a blog of your own and tell your readers about this giveaway.
And a 4th entry if you blog about my Strips n' Curves templates that are on special.
Want a 5th entry? Send me a picture of a Strips n' Curves quilt (no-- you can't copy one out of the book- but you can talk someone else into letting you take a picture of theirs!)

AND... speaking of wonderful giveaways, I read Micki's blog, called Irish Muses. Micki and I have an email conversation going-- we both grew up in Philadelphia, both lived in Texas, and now she is in Ireland and I am in Oregon... both very green places! I am of Irish heritage and Micki now lives very close to my family in Ireland. The internet certainly makes this a small world! She is having a wonderful Christmas giveaway. Check it out.

BLOG SPECIAL- Sale on Strips n' Curves Templates


I want to give a holiday special to my blog readers (and their friends). A lot of you loved Wanda's Christmas Quilt (Scroll down to Dec 12th) that I posted last week. I carry all three of Louisa Smith's books and ALL 10 of her template sets on my website, Alderwood Quilts. The templates aren't easy to find and shops rarely put them on sale. I am offering them to you until the end of the year at 25% off. I'm not advertising this on the website and I'm not putting it in the newsletter. It's just being advertised here. So spread the word! Tell your friends, post it on your own blogs, mention it in chat rooms- whatever you like!

All you have to do is type "BLOG SPECIAL" in the comments when you enter your order. The discount will not be reflected on your order page. I'll send you a confirmation shortly after you place the order that reflects the discount. In case I run out of a particular set, the page will say, "Contact for availability". If you contact me before January 1st, and tell me you want a set that is not in stock, I'll make sure you get the discounted price when they are back in stock. (Louisa Smith ships promptly to me so the wait would not be long).

As for the books- they are ALWAYS 25% off. The newest of Louisa's 3 books, One Patch Plus, is a popular seller, as is the template that goes with it.

This offer is good to ANYONE who types in "BLOG SPECIAL" in the comments when ordering--- from right now until Midnight (Pacific Standard Time) on December 31st, 2009.
Questions? Shoot me an email. I love to hear from readers! You can also call me during business days (Pacific Time) at 503-324-9400.

Just FYI, if you order from my website by noon (pacific time) on Monday, Dec 21, the post office tells me that it will get it to you before Christmas. I can't guarantee anything after that unless you spend a bazillion dollars having Rudolph deliver it via express sleigh.

Mere's Cinnamon Buns

Meredith, one of my 3 wonderful nieces, made these amazing cinnamon buns. I twisted her arm for the recipe and a few photos. OK- no twisting involved... she just sent them to me. These are a Cinnabon Knockoff recipe- I think she got the recipe on recipezaar.com, but I'm not sure. So- if you have extra time on your hands over the holidays- here's a great recipe to try. Mere says they are soft and fluffy and amazingly similar to those wonderful treats they make at Cinnabon stores. My mouth is watering!!!

Cinnamon Buns
2 cups warm water
1/2 cup sugar
4 teaspoons (2 packages) dry yeast
2 eggs
1 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup canola oil
6-7 cups flour

Dissolve the yeast in the warm water. Let sit for a minute or two. Add the sugar and salt. Mix. Add the cooking oil (or shortening), 2 eggs, 2 cups of flour and beat until smooth.

Stir in 3 more cups of flour. Begin kneading the dough, adding the final cup of flour. If the dough seems too sticky, knead in more flour, a quarter to a half cup at a time. Let the dough "rest" for 15 to 20 minutes.

Roll the dough into a rectangle that's 24 to 30 inches long by about 16 inches wide. Spread with soft butter and sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar. Starting at the wide end, roll into a log. Cut the cinnamon rolls into equal sized slices (approximately one inch wide each or slightly more) and place into two greased 9x13 pans.

Put in a warm place to rise for 45 minutes.
Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes (or until the cinnamon rolls are golden brown). Allow to cool for 5 minutes and then turn out of the pans.

Cinnabon Knockoff Frosting
This recipe makes a double batch. You can cut it in half for the above recipe. It also freezes well so you can make the full recipe and freeze leftovers for a future batch of buns. It helps to make this in a stand mixer if you have one (or you'll get a strong arm holding the hand mixer!)

1 pound margarine
1 pound cream cheese
2 pounds powdered sugar
2 teaspoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Allow margarine and cream cheese to reach room temperature. Beat cream cheese and margarine together in a bowl with a mixer. Slowly add in all powdered sugar. Once all of the sugar is in the bowl mix for at least an additional 12 minutes. When almost done, add in the extracts.


Wednesday, December 16, 2009

The Winner is ANGIE!

Congrats to ANGIE STEELE, who is the winner of the Wave Edge Ruler and pattern. I had a lot of names for this drawing, so I numbered them (listed on a piece of paper).... a total of 55 entries. My DH was taking a shower this morning and I hollered in to him to pick a number from 1 to 55. Not having a clue why, he hollered out, "45". I counted down the page.... and Angie had that number. See how sophisticated my system is? I do it a different way every month- but it really is random.

Angie is a new reader of my blog and a relatively new quilter, too. I am thrilled that she won. Angie- send me a private email to sue@alderwoodquilts.com with your mailing address so I can send it to you.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Arlette's Basket

It's a basket quilt! Arlette LK. send me this photo. She said it was a class project. Well, Arlette... you are a star student!

I've put 2 entries in the drawing for you, Arlette. Thanks for sending the photo. Good luck!

The giveaway runs through midnight tomorrow night (pacific standard time). I'll announce the winner on Wednesday morning and we'll do another giveaway that will run through the end of the year.

Mel's Christmas Trees

Here's another cutie from my niece, Dr. Melanie Hauser. Mel is my bestest quilting bud! She made this paper pieced Christmas wall hanging when she was living here in the Northwest. Mel hails from NJ, but went to Penn State, Oregon State, lived in KY and now is a chemistry professor at Buena Vista University in Storm Lake Iowa. She actually likes knitting better than quilting, but still gets the quilting bug now and then. This pattern is "Very Merry Christmas Trees" from Quilt Designs NW. Maybe, if we twist her arm, she'll send a picture of her latest prayer shawl- it's a beauty!

I have more pictures of her quilts in the gallery on my website. I'm not going to add her to the giveaway because she can have anything she wants if she just calls her dear, sweet, Aunt Susan. :-)

Melanie just moved to Iowa in August. This is her first winter there. She tells me that her back porch is doubling as an outdoor freezer- no need to keep the ice cream inside! I miss you, Mel- stay warm!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Wanda's Christmas Quilt

Can you say, "GORGEOUS!!!!!!" Wanda Hanson (Exuberant Color) just posted her 999th post. Congrats, Wanda! I'm a regular reader of Wanda's blog. She is very prolific and her work is pure eye candy. This one especially caught my eye because she used Louisa Smith's Strips n' Curves templates. I recently started carrying all of the Strips n' Curves books and the complete line of Louisa's templates.... and Wanda even purchased one from me. Besides being a talented and prolific quilter, Wanda is a super nice lady.

Wanda gets 2 entries in the current giveaway for allowing me to post this photo. I'll draw for the wave edge ruler and pattern giveaway on Dec 15th (there's still time to enter!). Here's a little "teaser"--- if you like the Strips n' Curves quilts--- be sure to check back between the 15th and the 31st---

Merry Christmas, Wanda. And here's to the next thousand posts on your fantastic blog!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Jocelyn's "Schnibbles"

This is "Picnic", which is Jocelyn's November Schnibbles. I never heard of schnibbles before and just had to ask. Her is what Jocelyn replied:

"I am part of "A Year of Schnibbles". This is the best description that I have found about Schnibbles (copied from Carol's Crafty Creations).
Schnibbles are little patterns to make little quilts usually 40" or less. Often they are square but not always. They make up a nice size for a wall hanging or table topper, because you know, you only need so many big quilts. Not to mention the fact that they sew up quicker, they are fun to make and make good gifts as well. They are made to work with charm packs which are packages of 5" squares of fabric, one of each fabric in the fabric line. Often the charm packs have 40 squares but sometimes they have less depending on the number of fabric in the fabric line. The Schnibbles patterns are made by Miss Rosie's Quilt Company.
Here's the definition of a Schnibble from the Miss Rosie's Quilt Company's web-site:
Schnibble: noun A scrap of fabric; a leftover bit of cloth; a small piece. The word has a German origin and is found primarily in German settlements in the Midwest."

How cute! I put 2 entries in the current giveaway for you, Jocelyn. Thanks for sharing "Picnic" with us! By the way, Jocelyn also has a nice blog. Check it out here.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Paw's Across My Heart

Rebecca McGaugh calls this "Paws Across My Heart". I have a vested interest in this one. Rebecca is a friend of mine. Rebecca and her husband, Clark publish the Independent, our local newspaper. I met her at a dinner for our local Chamber of Commerce. I sat next to her and we struck up a conversation. During the course of the evening, I told her that I owned an online quilt shop. She then told me that she wanted to learn how to quilt. The rest is history.

This is her FIRST quilt. It's old jeans and old flannel shirts- all belonging her her DH. The paw prints are appliqued. Rebecca and Clark love dogs. This quilt (and their bed) are room enough for all the extra paws and wagging tails that join them. Look closely at the bottom right of the photo. That's Janice- always looking for an opportunity to pose for a photo.

The backing is flannel. With a denim/flannel top, batting, and flannel backing- this thing weighs a ton.

Rebecca has been quilting for about a year and she has 3 or 4 finished quilts and 2 tops done that I know of. I'm sure I can talk her out of more pictures to show soon.

I put 2 entries in the drawing for you, Rebecca. Thanks for sharing your photo!

Cleary K's Christmas Mini

Cleary Cie K. Sent me this picture of a cute little Christmas mini quilt. Fun! Thanks for sharing with us, Cleary- I put 2 entries in the giveaway drawing for you.

Anya's Bento Box

Anya Tyson made this based on a tutorial from FilmInTheFridge.com. It's a modified Bento Box quilt.

Anya tells me she did this quilt in school colors and it was used for a raffle.

Anya has a great blog, too. Check out more of her work here.

What a stunning quilt, Anya! I love it! Thanks for sharing. I put a second entry into this month's giveaway for you. Good luck!

Mick's Quilt

Rhonda Phillips made this for her son, Mick, for Christmas. Let's just hope Mick doesn't read quilt blogs, or it won't be much of a surprise. (We're probably safe on that.)

The quilt was Rhonda's design but she used Carol Doak's Simply Sensational 9-patch stars to design it. What a stunning quilt, Rhonda! Thanks so much for sharing it with us. I put a second entry in this month's giveaway drawing for you. Good luck!

Angie's new hobby

Angie Steele is a relatively new quilter. She sent this picture of her daughter, Mary Grace, snuggled up in her Turning Twenty Raggedy Ann and Andy quilt. I believe this is Angie's first completed quilt. Didn't she do a great job?

Angie is doing a Block of the Month (I think at her LQS). She told me that she loves it because she learns a lot and has fun going. I gained a lot of my basic quilting skills doing BOM's with my friend, Diane, many years ago. Each month, the shop owner would give tips about how to put that particular block together and I didn't even realize how much I had learned until I was finished. I highly recommend BOM's- even if you aren't a new quilter. You learn and you meet people and have fun. I hope you send us a picture when this quilt is complete, Angie! I put 2 entries in this month's giveaway- thanks for sharing your photos. You are off to a great star. I hope you are quilting for many, many years!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Gwen's Flower Garden

PRETTY! Gwen Davis (aka Pokey) send me this picture of her latest quilt. She must have had a lot of fun collecting all of these floral fabrics! I'm sure Gwen can do Y-seams in her sleep by now!
Look carefully at the purple block- her free motion quilting looks like petals of the flower.

Thanks for sending the photos, Gwen. I put 2 entries in the giveaway for you.

Addendum from Sue Dec 8th:
Gwen got a great laugh out of this! There are NO Y-SEAMS in this quilt! Click to enlarge the photo- can you see the seams? They're half-hexagons. Sharon says she does everything "easy peasy". Well--- ya; coulda fooled ME! This doesn't look like an easy peasy quilt at all. LOVE IT (she said, with a blush!)

Wendy's Halloween Quilt

Wendy Nugent sent me this photo of "Hidden Stars" by Marti Michell. Wendy said it was a Halloween quilt. I was ready to call it an "autumn quilt" because I didn't see any Halloween fabrics. Then I looked at a larger view (just click on the photo). Sure enough- there are little jack-o-lanterns all over. HOW FUN!

I love the setting. It really takes the sampler blogs and makes them pop! I'll put a second entry in the giveaway drawing for you, Wendy. Thanks for sharing your beautiful quilt with us!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Bright Christmas

Doesn't this just make you smile? Thanks to Shaula Patton for sending this photo. Shaula taught this class at a quilt shop that is now (sadly) closed. I'm sure it was a fun class!

Thanks for sharing this with us, Shaula. I'll put 2 entries in the giveaway drawing for you.

Giveaway Update

I forgot to put a date up for the giveaway drawing for the Wave Edge Ruler and pattern posted on Nov 17th. Duh! Let's go with Dec 15th and then I'll do another giveaway for the holidays.

I got some nice photos today- I now have a happy in-box. :-)

No Pictures today!!!

Why no pictures? Because my poor, sad, in-box is empty. Won't you please make it a happy in-box? Send me a photo of one of your quilts and you'll get a second entry in the current giveaway for a Wave Edge Ruler and pattern (see Nov 17th post). Bonus- if you have Boy Scout or Girl Scout fabric in the quilt, you get a 3rd entry. Don't be bashful.... let's see those quilts! Send your photos to Sue@AlderwoodQuilts.com.

Friday, December 4, 2009


I'm SO PROUD to be an Oregonian this morning!

For those of you who follow such things (I must admit at this point that I am not a football fan), there was a HUGE football game in Oregon last night. Rival college teams from the University of Oregon and Oregon State University played what we "affectionately" call the "Civil War" last night. I dare say that most Oregonians have an allegiance to one or the other of these schools. People either attended one or the other, or they have a family member, friend, or neighbor who did.... or they like the team colors of one or the other! For whatever reason, there is a fierce rivalry between the 2 schools.

This year is a little different, though. The winner of THIS game will go to the Rose Bowl. So--- they were calling it the "War for the Roses". Fearing that fans might not show good sportsmanship, the presidents of both schools publicly promoted friendly competition, saying that this is competition- not war. It was amazing how heated this thing got. WOW!

So... if I don't care about football and I didn't go to either one of these schools, why am I proud this morning? NO VIOLENCE was reported on the news. I'm sure somebody somewhere got into a fight, and there were the usual traffic violations. But nothing really bad happened. I am seeing reports of people in rival colors shaking hands, and the losing team is being touted this morning as having played a great game. The game was really, really close, and both teams played well (or so I'm told).

One of the Oregon players was recently in the news for hitting someone during a game- lots of bad press. I think a lot of people got a reality check during that ugly incident. It's a GAME, people! But games like this one restore my faith in sports fans.

So who won? We ALL did! It was FUN. It was EXCITING! It was a GAME. But the duck fans are just a little happier than the beaver fans are this morning. The University of Oregon ducks will be playing in the Rose Bowl. And I'm sure they don't care much about the opinion of a lady who owns a quilt shop in Banks, Oregon, but I'm very proud of the Beavers for playing a good game, and being gracious losers.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Billy and Dolly

I'm planning to spend the next few days catching up on some "old news". I have several pictures on my memory stick from our trip and some random things that I'd like to share with you before I clear them from the stick. So... bear with me over the weekend as I share random pictures from the last month that made me smile.

First- here's Dolly and Billy. That's not their real names (if they even have names) but that's what we named them. My quilt shop in located in a building on our property, down the hill from our house. One morning, my husband and I were walking down there to fill some orders and we were greeted by livestock. Bear in mind that I grew up in Philadelphia, and lived in Dallas, Texas and Beaverton, Oregon until 2 years ago. I'm enjoying life in the country, but there's still a lot of "city girl" in me. I wasn't prepared to be greeted by a goat and a sheep at my shop door. I'm not sure one can ever be prepared for that, but I digress.

So-- Billy (the goat) and Dolly (the sheep- get it- the first cloned sheep was named Dolly?) just stood there. They wouldn't budge. We called all the neighbors we knew and tried to find their owners, with no luck. Eventually, they wandered up the hill and decided to spend the afternoon right above my lavender field. They disappeared that evening and I thought they had returned home. The next day, our dog was going nuts and we found that he was barking at- you guessed it- Billy and Dolly on our front lawn. These two were inseparable. They went everywhere together. (Best friends??) More calls, more shushing them- trying to find someone to keep them in a barn while we locate owners. After several days of spotting them, a good neighbor finally found their owners, who had been out of town and didn't realize they were loose. I'm happy to report that they are now back where they belong, safe and sound.

It still makes me smile to think of Billy and Dolly--- walking up the road together--- side by side. It doesn't take much to amuse me. :-)