Wednesday, November 25, 2015

A Moo-velous Retreat

Even though it was pretty tough to get home at 9:30 pm Thursday night from Florida, and get to the weekend retreat for Friday morning (I did not make it for 9 am!) I am so glad I went.  Cows were the order of the weekend.  But first, I made Brady's Olaf pillowcase with leftovers from his pj shorts, and some other scraps I pieced together to make the snow-like main part.
It will be on his bed this Christmas! Eeek.
You can see the paper piecing templates and red fabric in that picture, because this is what took me a long time:
Say hello to in Bloody, lol
I don't know if it was different surroundings, interruptions, (all good), or just being rather tired, but this girl took longer than any of them!  A little swearing occurred, which led to the bloody part of her name.  I do love her blue batik eyes. :-)  Her blaze is fabric from smocked dresses I made Brianne and Dayna for Christmas 1989.  Cranston VIP.  I know my aunt will love that detail. Red was the colour for July.

I took a break from paper-piecing and made up two blocks that I had already cut out and started assembling. They are replicas of the one I sent to Eileen...sure hope she's okay.
No clue where these are headed...but I did think of making more in green.  Maybe I could follow the So Scrappy Rainbow challenge for 2016 with these? Hmmm.

I also made time to take Rocco for a good walk on Sunday.  I missed our walks while I was in Florida.  He missed me walking him I think too!
He is not happy in his hoodie, but otherwise he would be too cold as he has no fur to speak of on his belly and inner legs.
Yep, we got our first little snowfall Saturday, just in time for the town's Santa Claus parade and Festival of Lights.  Rocco is looking at all the sculptures that are set up in the park!  Most of the snow went by the next day, although the temperatures hovered in the low 30s.  That's not Celsius, either! Brr, especially after I had just spent 10 days in 30 CELSIUS temps! (high 80s, even 91 the first day)

I finished these two gals after the retreat:
This is Ethel.  Don't you love her muzzle fabric?  It's tufts of grass!! Bahaha.
Bright or dark green was the colour for May, so I did dark.  Her blaze is scraps from a quilted runner I made for my Auntie Joan, my mum's sister who, sadly, is no longer with us, passing away a couple of years ago, much too young, from ovarian cancer.  Note how these last two cows have an extra 1/2" along the top?  They are unfinished 12", a royal PITA, and up until the retreat, I'd just figured I'd add to 1/2" strips along two sides, and then, with a few other quilters admiring all the cows, we hit upon being able to add along the top edge, as there are only two pieces there.
Interesting in that I auto-adjusted this one, as I do all my photos. However, I didn't like how dark picmonkey made dark green Ethel in auto-adjust, so I undid it and left her as is. The light background fabric has a much better definition in the aqua cow, but it made the eyes seem more electric than they actually are, although they definitely are arresting!
Aqua or light blue was the colour for June.  Her blaze is a piece of fabric my sister Wendy brought me back from a Caribbean cruise she was on several years ago.  Hence this cow's name is Carib, not to be confused with carob, native to the Mediterranean area. ;-)  Recognize the wave fabric?  It's from Cloud 9 Fabrics, and the quilt I made of the same name. 

So that brings my herd number to 8.  Indigo, orange and lime green are the remaining colours I need to make yet.  I also need to make Maartje's Mad Bull who will be black for Black Angus cows.  At the retreat, two of the gals to whom I gave a copy of this pattern were farmers, and one told me when I said some of the cows have named themselves as I sewed them, that it is the correct thing to do, name your Holstein milk cows! Who knew.  All my aunt's cows had names, some of them not so creative, like B3, lol, or Jersey who was, you guessed it, a Jersey cow!

So now that I have three more cows done, I have to get quilting on the Bento Box, which is loaded onto the Avanté.  I also did a little stash restocking while in Florida as well as at the retreat, so more on that, as well as on some of my warm fuzzy feelings about said retreat in another post. :-)

Linking up with Freshly Pieced and Sew Fresh Quilts. It's been a while!  Remember to check out what Craftsy has in store for us with Black Friday approaching....did I hear the phrase "stash restocking" somewhere recently?!  If you click through to Craftsy on the button on the sidebar, I will get a little compensation, so I thank you. :-)


  1. Those cows! Well done, I do my best paper piecing when alone and uninterrupted! Good luck with the remaining cows.

  2. Loving those cow blocks. :0) xx

  3. Love those cows. I'm glad you make Rocco wear a hoodie. I hate it when people make their poor, short haired dogs walk in the cold without a coat. Happy Thanksgiving!, but you've already had yours. Have another!! :D

  4. Those cows are darling - I can't wait to see them all together!

    Thank you for thinking of me, you are too sweet. I've been struggling a lot with deaths and medical problems in the family this past year and have just been very quiet online. The stars you sent me are lovely - I've been putting the quilt together so I can bring it to my grandfather at Christmas.

  5. Oh Rocco! ❤

    Oh I love those cows, they're all so adorable! Yes, Auntie Irene is going to love them! Lol I don't remember the names of those cows but I sure remember her hollering to them, "K'boss!!!! K'boss!!!" But sure enough they all perked up their cute little ears and came a'runnin'!! LOL

  6. I LOVE those cows. What a fun quilt those will make!

  7. Those cows are adorable! I can't wait to see your herd all pieced together into a quilt top. We have beef cows here on our little farm and they all get names, too. Hope the rest of them don't give you the trouble that Mary did!

  8. Welcome home. :) That was certainly a fast turn around from getting home to going on retreat, and I don't blame you for not getting there first thing in the morning. Paper piecing always takes way more mental energy for me, probably because I don't do it nearly often enough for it to be a good habit, yet. I love all the names of the cows that are popping up. I'm thinking they need quilted in somehow...

  9. I agree with Yvonne on quilting in the names. I really like the wave fabric in the last cow. Rocco looks nice and cozy in his hoodie even if he doesn't like it.

  10. Welcome Home. All your cows are turning out so cute. I had Ethel's blaze fabric. I might actually still have a piece of it. I agree you need to stitch the girls' name into the quilt for Aunt Irene.

  11. I love your herd! Where is the cow pattern from?

  12. I love those cows! They sure lend themselves to fun details, and names, too! Hope you had a wondeful trip to Florida and are enjoying every being back. Sounds like Rocco is very happy to have you back!

  13. These are great cows. I love Mary. Please keep the snow in your neck of the woods. We had some flurries the other day, but it didn't amount to anything.

  14. Welcome home. Rocco looks adorable in his hoody. The cows are all lovely. How many more do you need to make?

  15. Kudos to you on getting to the retreat and getting things done. I don't know if I could have done that, I seem to get jet lag easily, lOL The cows are progressing nicely :-)

  16. I was wondering about those cows!! They look fabulous!! Looks like you are back on track to get this finished up before Christmas? :) No pressure of course! LOL Looks to me like you made very good use of your retreat time and got a LOT accomplished!

    Tell Rocco he looks very dapper in his hoodie!! :) I bet he did miss you and your walks!

  17. Rocco is so handsome in his little winter parka! My two lazy lugs only go outside long enough to potty once the snow starts flying. Becker has actually perfected peeing in the yard from the porch to avoid standing in the snow. Boys, what are you gonna do? I'm in love with those cows. Bloody Mary...that's great!

  18. Love seeing your progress (especially Brady's pillow). So glad you enjoyed your retreat.