Monday, June 13, 2016

I survived the Wisconsin Shop Hop!

Wow! What a crazy and wonderful 2 days of shop hopping with 3 amazing--and very, very funny--fellow quilters!  The WI shop hop is going on right now and because I didn't go the N MN for the family reunion week, I was able to join these ladies and cover one of the sections of the statewide shop hop. We did 12 shops in 2 days!  

 I don't know if other states do this but at least MN and WI have been doing this for the past several years. I'll briefly explain.  (If you already are familiar with these shop hops, just skip ahead--I don't mind!)  Someone organizes the creation of a unique fabric line depicting something WI. This year it was kind of a gardening theme and you can see the line if you go to this link  Then LQSs decide if they want to join in the hop and they get organized into sections. The entire hop offers a drawing for huge prizes to those who complete all the sections--in other words, visits every participating shop in the state--and each section offers a drawing for slightly less huge prizes as well. The section we covered offered a Featherweight as well as several other great prizes. My friend Pat and I are arguing as to who will win the Featherweight! Root for me, please!  And furthermore, each shop has a drawing for a basket of goodies for everyone who visits.  So, 3 ways to win!  As well as finding amazing fabrics that we absolutely want need!  I haven't had time to photo the things that I found, but suffice it to say, I have enough to keep me busy for awhile! And I will add that the trunk of the car was almost bursting with all the goodies we picked up along the way!

As we were in Wisconsin, we really weren't surprised to come across a small herd of painted ladies by the side of the road, outside a paint store in Minocqua.  We had to take a few pics of these gals. and Guys too I guess!

Deb and Carolyn with a "Golden Gurnsey" with jewels and everything in her crown!

Is this Uncle Sam or what?

We have no idea what HL stands for!

My favorite--she had blue and yellow polka dot bloomers that you could see from behind, but we respected what little  modesty she had!

What a treat to come across something like this in the middle of the Northwoods!

When I got home Saturday night, I went back to work on quilting the king sized quilt. I thought I'd try to finish one of the sashing strips--I only had five more to go-- and before you know it, I'd managed to finish them all!  Sunday was spent quilting the borders, cutting and stitching on the binding, and cutting the fabrics for pillowcases that I hope to have finished in time to take with to Maine.

I don't have a space large enough to lay out the quilt so these are shots of parts of it.  Above is the back--dark blue with colorful freshwater fish and turtles since this is for people who fish.  I had really good luck with my thread tension and had hardly any peeking through on either the front or the back.

This is a corner of the front of the quilt.  Maybe you can see that I quilted the border in three sections--the inner section is trees, water and canoeists.  I quilted an elongated meander and I think the stitching looks a little like a fishing line as it's being cast into the water.  The green section has a little wave-like design that just kind of came out as I was sewing.  And the outer section--the fish--I did in a large "headband" design.  As I was stitching, I realized that it looks like swirling water.  So the entire border looks like active fish in the water under the canoeists, separated by green algae on top of the water--and that's what many of our WI lakes look like later in the summer!

At any rate, I'm quite pleased at how it all came out. I was getting quite dismayed whenever I took a look at the quilt, ( I always seem to begin disliking the quilt as I do the quilting on it and see it so up close and personal) but as soon as I cut off the excess batting and backing and squared it up, it began to look better and the little part of the hand-stitched binding looks better yet. I  began the hand stitching last night and I'd planned on stitching the binding as we drove to Maine over the next 3 days, but it really is too large to handle in the front seat of the car. I'm not sure yet if there's going to be room for me to sit in the back and stitch it there.  If not, I'll just work on it at night in the hotels and finish it up when we get to Tessa's house.

I'd sent pics to the customer after I'd pinned it up and she really, really liked it. I told her I didn't think I'd have it finished in time to bring it with, so she will be quite surprised when I give it to her! I love surprising people like this, don't you?

Enough of this. I have lots to do today, including trying to get those pillowcases sewn, so I'd better get going. I'll check in when I get back home in about 10 days.

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