From My Carolina Home

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Quilting on the Grand Strand, part 2

Picking up from yesterday, the Grand Strand Quilters meeting was so much fun. I really enjoyed making new quilter friends, but had no idea what would happen next. One of the charities the Grand Strand Quilters support is the Quilts of Valor program. I didn’t get this quilter’s name (with the microphone) before the end of the meeting, and her quilt would be very nice for the veterans, but I don’t remember if she said who it was for.

Grand Strand Quilters 13

Batting is cut at each meeting for finished tops, here an Anita’s Arrowhead with patriotic borders.

Grand Strand Quilters 1

After the meeting, while I was chatting with members, Joan came up to me explaining that she was the QOV coordinator for the group as well as part of the national organization. She wondered if I would be willing to quilt some tops for them. She said they have a backlog of 150 quilt tops ready to be quilted, but a serious lack of longarmers willing to help. I hesitated a moment, knowing that there would be some logistics involved, and I just couldn’t do them by mail. But she already had a plan. It seems that about a third of their members are snowbirds, spending the winter in Myrtle Beach and the summers up north. Some go through my area twice a year. So, if I took some quilts to do, then in six months or so, someone would be coming through to pick them up. Well, then, sure!! Knowing I had a bit of stuff from shopping, I agreed to take 10. Joan ran home, cut batting for 10 quilts, packed them up in 5 large bags, and met me at my hotel (with her charming husband, Jim) to hand them off.  They completely filled the back seat of our rented Jeep. I think this will become a regular thing for us!  So, I think I may have become an honorary member of the Grand Strand Quilters, at least I’d like to think so.  Yes, I’ll share them with all of you as I put them on the frame for quilting around my other projects.

Grand Strand Quilters QOV

There are two really wonderful quilt stores in the area, and I visited both, along with a Crafter’s mall where one of the vendors had lots of fun fabrics and notions. On Tuesday, I drove to Murrells Inlet to Accent Sewing. What a wonderful store!! There were fun fabrics, lots of notions and thread, classroom space and machines.

Accent Sewing 3

I chatted only a little with their longarmer who was busy with a quilt right then, so I didn’t want to bother her too much. All the ladies were so friendly and helpful. Diane helped me find a pebble fabric for my Be My Neighbor quilt to use as the streets.  The owner, Sheryl, was so nice and helpful too. It is a bright and colorful store to visit, I wish I could do their mini quilt of the month quilt along, the samples were just joyful!

Accent Sewing 2

Then on Wednesday, I visited Quilting on the Beach, where again I met Barb and Anna, two lovely, friendly ladies willing to chat a bit. I spent the most time with Maureen, their longarm quilter as she worked on this beautiful quilt.  The piecer, Anne, was there too, getting a lesson in what a longarmer needs.  Just look at how perfect all her points are on those triangles!  As usual, I picked up a new-to-me, stupidly simple, brilliant idea for dealing with quilt backings that are too small. She uses long straight pins to secure a piece of fabric to the edge, allowing the longarm more space so it doesn’t bump into the clips. As she rolls the quilt, she moves the bit of extra fabric.  Why didn’t I ever think of this?

Quilting at the Beach 2

Pretty store, lots of fabrics!! When I mentioned the Be My Neighbor quilt, Barb found another pebble fabric in lighter colors, so I got some of that too. I’ll show you those tomorrow.

Quilting at the Beach 4

Then, down the road a bit was Homespun Crafter’s Mall, with new crafted items and vintage treasures. The fabric vendor had a lot of choices too. I understand this is a relatively new expansion for the vendor.  This dealer mall satisfied both my quilter self and my vintage side.

Homespun Crafter's Mall 3

So, that was my quilting adventure in Myrtle Beach.   If you missed part one, click HERE.  There were more adventures, and I’ll share those soon.

Do you look for quilting fun when you take a trip?


Quilting on the Grand Strand

Last week, DH had work to do in Myrtle Beach and I decided that I needed some beach time.  So I packed a bag and went with him.  While he was working, I had a grand time on the Grand Strand!  The Grand Strand is composed of a number of small communities along the coast, comprising over 60 miles of uninterrupted beach on the South Carolina Coast.  Myrtle Beach is the largest, located roughly in the middle.  One of the things I like to do when traveling is visit quilt shops (where I can), and this time was lucky enough to find the Grand Strand Quilters were having a meeting while I was there.  I emailed the president, asking if I could visit, and of course as all quilters do she said “Certainly!!”.  Thursday morning I arrived as the pre-meeting chat time was getting underway.  It didn’t take but a moment for someone to say “Welcome!!”  I had met a lovely lady the day before at one of the quilt shops, Leanne, and she was new to the area.  We happened to walk in at the same time, so I was familiar with one face.  We both were swept up in the group and I didn’t get a chance to talk to her again that morning.  There were at least 50 women there, setting up machines, chatting, working on kits for charity quilts, all in a happy buzz of conversation.  I chatted with a few here and there, and ended up at a table for the meeting with Barbara, Flo, Blanche, Nancy, Theresa, Sue and Cindi. Here, Blanche was showing her progress on her postage stamp applique quilt, such beautiful handwork!  All those tiny pieces were appliqued to the base by hand.  She has a few more rows and it will be done.

Grand Strand Quilters 7

The meeting got underway, while many of the members worked on hand projects.

Grand Strand Quilters 9

They have a microphone and speaker system so every presenter can be clearly heard by everyone.

Grand Strand Quilters 10

The quilt show and tell was magnificent, such lovely work!!  I wish I could show you all these quilts individually!  But I will show you a few.

Grand Strand Quilters 20 quilts

The room has a stage, so the quilts could easily be seen by the entire room. I didn’t get this quilter’s name as she was gone before I could get to her. But her blue quilt is beautiful.

Grand Strand Quilters 12

Sue’s quilt is all HSTs and tiny squares, and is a pattern by Bonnie Hunter. I was so impressed with the number of bits in this one, and love her colors. Look at her scrappy border!  You know I love scrappy.

Grand Strand Quilters 21 Sue

Adrene’s quilt was made from a collection of African inspired prints she had collected that went beautifully with the panel found later.

Grand Strand Quilters 24 Adrene

Carole’s quilt (yes she spells her name like I do!) is for charity. She did a diagonal backing to mirror the string quilt blocks on the front. Very creative idea!

Grand Strand Quilters 22 Carole

I had such a great time that morning!! Nancy and Theresa were just delightful to chat with.

Grand Strand Quilters 5

Bonnie’s string quilt was so colorful!

Grand Strand Quilters 23 Bonnie

Blanche had a wall hanging for show and tell.

Grand Strand Quilters 25 Blanche

Cindi’s lovely string quilt had a neat black border that set off the colors nicely.

Grand Strand Quilters 26 Cindi

This guild does an impressive amount of charity quilting, and they truly have it organized well. They meet weekly, so some sewing on the charity projects gets done every week. Kits are made with tops, backing and batting for members to take home to quilt, or to be sent to a longarm volunteer.

Grand Strand Quilters 2

Joanne and Sandy (at the machines) are working on caps for children in chemo with another member who is working on a small quilt project.

Grand Strand Quilters 4

Grand Strand Quilters 26

In the back of the room, long tables were set up end to end to cut batting for kits.

Grand Strand Quilters 3

Enjoying the quilts, chatting with all these friendly ladies, sharing ideas and inspiration, there is too much to show you in one post.  So, stay tuned for the rest of the story tomorrow, and we’ll go shopping! Now published, click HERE to see Part 2!

Have you ever visited a quilt meeting while traveling?


A Puppy Quilt

Last month I left a comment on a quilty UFO adoption post on a fellow blogger’s event. Cyndi blogs at Quilting is More Fun Than Housework, and every so often she does a link up event. You post a UFO that you just don’t have the enthusiasm to finish, and then pick a person who comments on it to send it to. She picked my name for her giveaway panel of an adorable puppy.

Puppy Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

I got it about a week later, and laid it out over the longarm bar to load and quilt when the one I was working on was done. But that came and another one was loaded for another charity event, and I was still staring at this panel. My enthusiasm for it was waning, it just didn’t speak to me at all. The longer I looked at it, the less I liked it. Finally, I decided to figure out what was wrong with it in my eyes, and fix that. Right away, once I really analyzed the panels components, I decided I really didn’t care for the difficult color in the border. That not quite orange, not really salmon, neon apricot took all the focus away from the puppy. So, first up, get rid of it.

Puppy Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

I cut the puppy part out of the center, and also cut the dark navy background into usable sections. I found more fabrics in my stash that I liked a lot better, and used a rust in the same family as that orange to tone it down. Adding the first border, I sewed from the panel side so I could follow the first navy frame on the panel.

Puppy Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

Oh, yes, liking this a lot better. This rust, brown and navy print makes a nice frame and tones down the garish salmon in the panel to where you don’t notice it anymore. Now the puppy takes center stage.

Puppy Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

Then I added back the original navy bubble print.

Puppy Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

I once again used my trick of adding squares around the panel to enlarge it. Using the colors pulled from stash, I cut strips, sewed those together then cross cut for squares.

Puppy Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

Laying them out, I again made one or two a tiny bit bigger to cover the gap.

Puppy Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

Next row of border completed, plus a final border to get a nice lap size.

Puppy Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

Loading it on the longarm, I quilted it with a pantograph that reminded me of soap bubbles.

Puppy Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

Bound with the lighter brown, it was ready for delivery.  Changing the colors in the borders to more muted tones makes the quilt suitable for either a boy or girl.

Puppy Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

I took it to a local rescue group Charley’s Angels. They rescue dogs and cats from local kill shelters. The quilt will be offered at their Bark in the Park auction which will be in May. This is the group that started the incredible program of putting adoptable dogs at a local hotel to interact with guests. They have adopted out an amazing number of dogs this way.

Adopt Me at From My Carolina Home

This sweet face was looking for a forever home while I visited.

Adopt Me at From My Carolina Home

It is so sad that as a society, we still have so many animals euthanized every year due to having too many to care for.   Irresponsible owners who don’t spay or neuter then let their animals wander is a huge problem in western NC, and elsewhere.

Puppy Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

We aren’t quite ready to have another dog yet, but when we are, we will look once again to the shelters first.  Our last three dogs have come from rescue groups like this one.  Yes, sometimes the dogs have issues, but love, patience, and training can usually overcome any problem.  Most health issues can be managed, too.

Are you a supporter of your local humane society?


Linking up

Freemotion on the River Linky Tuesday

Show and Tell with Bambi

Em’s Scrap Bag



Scrap Dance Mystery Two-Step April

Are you ready for the next step in the Scrap Dance Mystery Two-Step?  I know I am!!  Sometimes it seems like it is so long between steps!  But from the comments, I think that is a good thing so you can work it in around other things and still have some mystery fun while making a dent in the scrap bins.
Scrap Dance Two-Step Mystery Quilt Along

OK, then!  Without further ado, here is the April Two-Step!

First, divide the total number of 4-1/2 inch scrappy squares into two equal number piles.  If you are making the Queen size, you’ll have an uneven number of squares, put the extra one on the first pile.

Match up those squares with the bar units as shown in the picture below.  Make sure your background on this unit is touching the center square.  The scrappy bars should be on the outside.  You’ll use half your bar units for this step, (just over half for Queen).  Press toward the center square.

Now, Two Step!  With the remaining 4-1/2-inch squares, use two QST units to make the unit below.  Be sure that your scrappy QST touches the center square.  The background QSTs should be oriented north-south.   This will use up half of your QSTs.  Press toward the center square.

PDF Download of this month’s steps – Scrap Dance Two Step April

Don’t be tempted to guess what is next, LOL, it can go together a number of different ways, and only one of those is right.  We’d all love to see your progress as you go forward, so upload your pictures to the Flickr group, and be sure they are public so we can share them.  The group url is – and I look forward to seeing all your units as they are done.

Are you just now finding the mystery?  You can catch up quickly as there are only four months published.  We will finish in July, then have more shares in August as the quilts are finished.  So, come join in!  Just click on Scrap Dance Mystery Two-Step to get started.  Each step is linked to the one that came after, and all have downloads to print out for reference in the sewing room.

How’s your Two Step coming along?

Scrap Dance Two-Step Mystery Quilt Along//


More Stamping Fun in April

In April, DH invited the club over to have an inspection of their little British cars by a couple of very knowledgeable members to see what might need attention before it became a problem.  For the guys who might be interested in seeing the cars, here’s a link to the event – LBC Tech session.  For us gals, the event wasn’t our cup of tea, so a few of us got together to stamp.  Two of the participants had never done this before, and I think we have new converts to the addiction, LOL!!  Gail (my ace Stampin Up demonstrator) brought over her Big Shot to do some die cuts, along with two really great designs for us to copy. First was an Easter card, as this was a few days before the holiday.

Stamping Cards Party at From My Carolina Home

We began by cutting out our elements.

Stamping Cards Party at From My Carolina Home

Gail had the brilliant idea of embossing the eggs, so we did that too. I had a die for a butterfly, so I could add that to one of my cards. But, I forgot to do the embossing of the white background.

Stamping Cards Party at From My Carolina Home

So my second attempt had the embossing all done, and no die cut butterfly.  The embossing of the white adds a bit more texture and interest, elevating the card from nice to wonderful.

Stamping Cards Party at From My Carolina Home

Inside was Happy Easter with stamped butterflies.

Stamping Cards Party at From My Carolina Home

The second card was an all occasion design. Gail had the demo one with Happy Birthday Wishes, and I did mine with Thinking of You. I have more of those to send than any other.  I love the lighter flowers stamped first to give a feeling of depth.

Stamping Cards Party at From My Carolina Home

The envelope got a flower too.  Once again, embossing the background add texture.  I’ll add my personal stamp to the back, and leave the inside blank for now, so it is ready to go the next time I need a card fast.

Stamping Cards Party at From My Carolina Home

A couple more shares for you, this postcard came from my blogger friend Vicki, who blogs at Colorways by Vicki. See her post about it HERE. And then read about her incredible thread stash and how she matched up the colors exactly!

Vicki's postcard - From My Carolina Home

I also have to share with you the incredible card I received from my stamping buddy Carol W. Her design sense creates stunningly, beautiful work. This one is stamped, and delicately colored by hand, with dimensional butterflies.

Carol W's card - From My Carolina Home

But the real surprise is the dimensional quality, you lift on the little tab and tuck the end behind the dimensional butterfly for a beautiful card display.

Carol W's card - From My Carolina Home

How cool is that!!

What are you working on today?



Quilting the Orphan Block Quilt

Picking up from the post on Sarah’s blog about using an orphan block, here is the finished flimsy after adding the squares, bars and border.  If you missed that post, click HERE to see the construction of the orphan block flimsy.

Orphan Block Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

I loaded it on the longarm, auditioned threads, and once again settled on that muddy light brown that just goes with everything. I picked a simple floral design pantograph and began quilting away.

Orphan Block Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

Going along nicely, it seemed.

Orphan Block Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

How delightful to get to the bottom and see it is still square! Putting borders on with the measure and cut method pays off again.

Orphan Block Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

Then I went to check the back of the quilt, and found this.

Orphan Block Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

And another run in another spot of loopy top thread.

Orphan Block Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

This was monumentally frustrating! There is no good reason for this. The thread was the same, I didn’t run out of bobbin thread, these were just short runs of the tension being off, and then correcting itself without me ever knowing anything was amiss. Since this is going to be donated, I had to fix it.

I marked the beginning and end of the bad stitching with big pins so I could find the spots on the top. Doesn’t look like there is anything wrong here, but there was.

Orphan Block Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

Here is the other section. You’d never know anything was off from the top side!

Orphan Block Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

I clipped the thread on the backside and pulled the top thread out.

Orphan Block Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

From the top side, I can see the holes from the previous stitching.

Orphan Block Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

I resewed the lines by freemotion from the front of the machine, tying off the threads at each end of the run.  There’s a wobble in it, but I don’t think the recipient will mind.

Orphan Block Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

Both areas now fixed.  The quilt was removed from the frame and trimmed.

Orphan Block Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

I like the overall quilting, and you really cannot tell where the bad stitching used to be.

Orphan Block Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

I used a pansy pantograph, which shows up nicely in the white areas of the center block.

Orphan Block Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

Binding by hand in red, another nice day of slow stitching, and it was done.

Orphan Block Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

It has already been mailed to Quilty Hugs for Happy Chemo sponsored by Em’s Scrap Bag and Hands2Help.

Have you made an orphan block quilt?



Tips and Tutorials Tuesday



Orphan Block Quilt and Hands2Help

I am delighted to be a guest blogger on Sarah’s blog, Confessions of a Fabric Addict today!  I am going to be showing how I did an orphan block quilt, beginning with this block.  Remember, it was the first block of the Be My Neighbor quilt, then I decided to do it in springtime colors instead of my comfort zone traditional colors.

Orphan Block Quilt ~ From My Carolina Home

So Hop over to Sarah’s blog, Confessions of a Fabric Addict , to see how I constructed the quilt flimsy with this orphan block, read about Hands2Help, join the linky parties, or send a quilt, and you might win a wonderful prize from one of her sponsors.

Confessions Of A Fabric Addict

Then, come back tomorrow to see the rest of the story, the quilting of that orphan block quilt.

Visiting from Sarah’s Blog?  Welcome!  I hope you’ll take a look around and enjoy the variety of subjects on my blog.  The current mystery quilt is underway, and you have time to catch up – just click on Scrap Dance Two Step for the first of the monthly steps – next step is April 21. From sewing and quilting, gardening and mountain living, to cooking and tablescapes, crafting and travel, there is always something going on at From My Carolina Home!

What’s going on in your world today?