Charity Quilt – A Scruffily Christmas Quilt

A friend requested that I make a quilt for a silent auction to benefit an animal charity.  Time has been in short supply lately, so it needed to be something that I could crank out in 10-14 days…at night….after work 🙂  Allow me to introduce you to the Scruffily Christmas Quilt!  (yes, I know…scruffily is not a word, but it’s how this quilt makes me feel lol).

scruffily christmas quiltI modified the pattern a bit from Rachel Griffith’s (from PS I Quilt) Moda Bake Shop tutorial.  I didn’t use a jelly roll for the insides of the squares, just cut up some extra solids that I had on hand.  I highly recommend her pattern if you need a quick, fun, quilt.  Super easy and I love the results.  It reminds me a little of the quilt a long hosted by Rachel that resulted in my Happy Howlidays quilt.

scruffily christmas quiltTrying to get a  picture of a quilt in this house without a cat…next to impossible.  So, its super simple.  Lay out a bunch of layer cake squares in a pleasing pattern, lay a charm square in the middle of those, and then a 2.5 inch square in the middle of the charm square.

IMG_0323Sew 1/4 inch around all of the squares, then sew the rows together, then layer and quilt.  Easy peasy.  Especially if you have a “helper” like the Moose.

IMG_4218I went with simple straight line quilting because I didn’t want to detract from the “scruffiliness” once I washed it.  The fun thing about this quilt is that the more you wash it, the more scruffily it becomes.  Awesome for some snuggling under and dreaming of Christmas wishes.

IMG_0325I hope it brings a good sum of $ for the organization and that it finds a loving home.  I love this little quilt and wanted to keep it, lol.  Maybe I’ll have to make one for us 🙂  The fabric is 25th & Pine for Moda, by Basic Grey.  I bought mine from the Fat Quarter Shop.  They’re having an awesome sale this weekend.  Very bad for my budget.  I’ve decided I need to ask Santa to redo my closet this Christmas so I can add lots of shelves for the fabric I keep accumulating!

The last quilt of 2012

I handed off the last quilt of 2012 last night 🙂  I made it for a dear friend of mine (our neighbor).IMG_1404  When we first moved into our house in 2006, she and her husband were quick to befriend us.  My husband had lived in the country all his life before marrying me in 1989, but I have ALWAYS been a city girl (he lured me out to the country with the promise of horses, lol).  She and her husband had lots of chuckles as I learned some interesting lessons about life in the country:  1.  Although strawberries are a fruit, they do NOT grow on trees.
2.  Always lock the gate behind you, even if you think the horses are following you 🙂
3.  opossums really DO play dead, even when they are definitely NOT!
4.  Hot wires really ARE hot.
5.  And that sometimes, life is hard..and when it is, it’s important to cling to those we love to weather the storm.IMG_1385Two years after we moved in, her husband passed away from a massive heart attack.  I still miss him every day and think of him when I do something “city-fied”.  I can’t even imagine how much she and her girls hurt missing him.  She is always here for me, no matter what time, what day, no matter what!  So this quilt has been in process for a year (I started it the day after Christmas last year) and it’s finally complete.  It’s soft and cuddly, and has sayings on it about friendship.  IMG_4080It’s a simple quilt made from strips cut from panels and fabric.  It was quilted with an all over meander of loops, stipple, and wandering clovers.  It would be beautiful with quilted snowflakes, but my quilting skills aren’t there and I wanted it to be pretty and not look like a practice piece.IMG_4077 IMG_4078So, that’s it for me to end 2012.  I hope you all had a wonderful New Year’s Eve 🙂  I’ll have another post on quilty goals later in the day.

Wrapping up 2012

I love the week between Christmas and New Years.  It’s always been a time of reflection and planning for me.  2012 has been such an incredibly busy year.  The clinic has grown so much…it’s hard to believe it will have been 3 years since I opened it in February.  Here’s a pic of my awesome staff at our Christmas party.  ADC Indy Staff 2012I’m very proud of them and all the hard work we’ve been doing.  However, hard work has its downside.  When building a thriving business, sometimes that doesn’t leave a lot of time for things like hobbies, family, and other things that bring passion and joy to our life.  2012 found me running from the get go with tons of speaking engagements Jan through April, busy volunteer work as outgoing President of our state veterinary medical association, and the regular day-to-day craziness with appointments.  You would think it would have settled down in the summer, but this was the summer to beat all summers in terms of allergies and my little patients were extra miserable resulting in lots of extra hours.  I tried my hand at gardening again this year, just in time for the summer with the least amount of rain in Indiana  history.  I kept it going until I was gone for a week for a meeting in July and then it all died while I was gone (thank you hubby….).  Then fall approached and my dermatology resident was off for 5 weeks studying for his board examinations (which he passed!!!! YEAH!!!) so that meant one dermatologist doing the work of two.  Let’s just say I don’t remember much of October and November…and here we are at the end of December.  This year has flown by and we’re ending it with a bang.  We have about 9 inches of snow on the ground right now, which is beautiful…but makes it a bit difficult to do the daily chores that come with taking care of these beautiful ladies.

Tongo & Blossom 2012

Tongo & Blossom 2012

Then, what would a vacation be without a trip to the ER for surgery?  I tell you, I’m not sure why my animals can’t ever have dermatologic issues that I can fix, lol.  Poor Edward woke me up crying on Friday morning.  For the life of me I couldn’t figure out what was wrong with him until I accidentally touched his face and he cried again.  Well, I opened his mouth and voila!  He split one of his upper left molars in half (dangling…ewww!) and slab fractured the other with the pulp hanging out.  Now, as a veterinarian I have a pretty strong stomach but there are 2 things I do NOT do…maggots and teeth.  I have a long-standing history with hating dentists (not their fault…something ALWAYS goes wrong when I have work done), so yes, I’ve transferred this phobia to my animals.  So poor Eddie had surgery to remove 2 teeth (each with two roots…ouch!) on Friday along with a cyst he’s had on his rump for a bit that I was going to have removed when he had his dental in March.  It’s been a rough 48 hours with him, but I think things are looking up today.  Here’s the poor patient on Friday night.EddieSo, what have I accomplished on the quilting sewing front this year?  Well…I started the year with a “thank you” quilt for the Executive Director of our state veterinary medical association.  She was a huge help to me while I was President and she is all about family, so I made her a photo quilt.  With some help from the resident quilt police 🙂Lisa's quiltWork on the Swoon quilt commenced, but I only have 3 blocks finished (this one will be showing up in my goals for 2013!)  March brought the exciting arrival of Scarlett, my Bernina 830 LE (you can read all about it here).  I’ve had a lot of fun getting to know her this year!  I spent 3 days in August at a Bernina retreat and made some great friends (and bought a lot of stuff, lol).  I really love this machine and still have so much to learn.  I made a fun little banner to welcome her to her new home with my embroidery module.  ScarlettNext up was the completion of a fun little table topper.  Nothing exciting, but something bright and summary 🙂Table TopperI started the HoopSisters Mystery Quilt project in June and this is as far as I got 🙂  This is a fun project, but all of a sudden I lost patience with all of the thread changes and didn’t really care for the colors and was just kind of “meh” on the whole thing.  HoopSisters Mystery QuiltNext, I completed the top on a quilt kit that the hubby had purchased for me Christmas 2011.  He brought it back for me from Glacier Quilts in Montana.  Finishing it and quilting it are on the list of goals for 2013.  Montana QuiltOh yes…I almost forgot, we added a new addition to the helper cat household in July.  This is Moose (aka “bad kitty”).  He was a rescue with some serious eye issues but has grown into a huge boy (10 lbs at 7 months old!) and his lack of vision in one eye doesn’t slow him down in the slightest.  MooseNext up was a baby quilt for our neighbor the end of July.  This was the first quilt I have tried the “endless embroidery” option on using my 830 for quilting.  All of the quilting was done in the hoop repeating a design over and over.  It was a good thing to try with a baby quilt, but I sure wish I’d had my MasterHooper then.  I felt like the quilting was too dense and it’s not my best work, but the baby’s mom loved it, so that’s what counts.Moon & Stars quilt for AidenIn August, Mom and I decided we were both going to make a Farmer’s Wife Sampler quilt out of our stash fabrics.  Each month, we each pick 5 blocks from the book (alternating months of who picks the blocks).  We took a break over the holidays because I fell behind while my resident was out of the office, but I’m eager to get back to it in January.  It’s fun working on this together and texting each other pics of our blocks as we go.  It’s even more fun to lay them out in person when we get together.  She and Dad are in Florida most of the time now and I sure miss them!First Five BlocksOctober blocksThen I finished Mom’s “Florida Quilt” using the Jelly Roll Race technique.  I used Vintage Modern by Bonnie & Camille for Moda.  This was my first attempt at a pieced back along with my first Jelly Roll Race quilt.  I really love the way it turned out, so I’ll be making more of these.Mom's qult frontMom quilt backThen, before you knew it, it was October and time for Halloween.  I fell in love with this embroidery pack from Claudia’s Creations called “Pillow Talk”.  It has designs for every season and so far I’ve made the Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas pillows.  I just make the 16×16 pillows with an envelope back and toss in a pillow form.  The Halloween one was great because I used fabric on the back that glows in the dark (the smiles glow in the dark even though it’s a little hard to see in the pics).Halloween Pillow frontHalloween Pillow backGlow in the dark smilesI also made a fun little Halloween quilt that I could never get the cats off of long enough to take a full picture of the front and back, lol.Halloween QuiltMooseIn November I made a Thanksgiving pillow (with Simon acting as Vanna White) and a little Turkey Table Topper (that I didn’t finish until the day AFTER Thanksgiving thank you very much!).Thomas TurkeyThanksgiving PillowThanksgiving pillow backAnd we wrap up the year with my favorite season.  Even though it was incredibly busy this year, I always LOVE the holiday season.  I love the decorations, picking out presents that I know will bring a smile to loved one’s faces, and just the joy of the season.  This Christmas was especially fun with a 7 month old kitten in the house tearing up the ornaments, decorations and tree as quickly as I could put them up.Moose treeDon’t let that angelic face fool you…He’s all mischief and trouble.  My embroidery machine got a work-out over the month of December.  I made several holiday pillows using the Pillow Talk design to give for gifts.  In fact, I made so many I didn’t have time to make one for me this year!  That design takes over 2 1/2 hours to stitch out!  Christmas PillowChristmas PIllow backThen I cut up a little Maxine panel with funny sayings and made little hand towels out of them for family members.  I found this nifty little snowflake stitch on my machine and went to town.  This is the one I made for my Mom and Dad since they’re in Florida more than Indiana.  They were good for a giggle when their recipients opened them 🙂IMG_1293Maxine towelAnd last, but not least, the last quilt of 2012 is meant for my neighbor.  I finished sewing the binding on last night and just need to put the label on today and wash it up.  More pics to come of that one.Pam's quiltSo, as I look back at all I accomplished in 2012, I realize I managed to do more than I thought I did 🙂  As crazy busy as things were, I still managed to try some new techniques and create a little sewing time for myself and the helper cats!  I hope you guys had a great 2012 as well and I plan to be posting a lot more next year (stay tuned for the 2013 goals post).  Happy New Year!