Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Island Batik Blog Hop and Giveaway: Lake and Trees

I'd like to welcome everyone to my post on Island Batik's 'The Ultimate Home Décor' blog hop. I finally can show off this beautiful collection of fabric, River Valley, designed for Deb Tucker Studio 180 Designs by Kathy Engle.


I kind of went to town on this one!


All of the fabrics, thread, batting and needles were supplied by Island BatikAurifilHobbs Batting, and Schmetz Needles. the 2.5" strip die and cutter were supplied by AccuQuilt.

Isn't it gorgeous? As anyone who reads my blog knows, my favourite colour combination is blue and green so this collection made me swoon when I undid the pretty wrapping paper this was in.

The only problem I had with this challenge was deciding exactly what to make; I had so many ideas. I started with the basket that is available on the AccuQuilt website. Thank you to Connie of Free Motion by the River, which is where I first saw this project.
It didn't take long to make at all. I used my AccuQuilt die cutter to slice off the 2.5" strips needed, and cut the other widths. Like Connie, I hate wasting perfectly useable fabric, so I turned the four corners you cut away into coasters. When I have my tea or my glass of wine outside, I like to have a cover on top to keep out unwanted visitors! I also prefer to use cloth napkins, and so I had to make one (more to come, just ran out of time) to pop into the basket with the coasters for when I eat outside.
I quilted the basket and coasters with 12 wt Aurifil 

Our Alberta home had the most lovely wide verandah. I bought my beautiful white wicker chairs specifically for it, and I spent many a happy after-school-unwinding, ensconced in a chair, sipping tea and nibbling on chocolate. These chairs are, gosh, 21 years old now, (they're showing their age) and when we moved back here to Ontario in 2012, MacGyver had the idea to power wash them to remove the peeling paint, and repaint them brown to match our patio set. I didn't want them brown; I wish I'd put my foot down now and said nope, they stay white. It's one of the only times I have not been happy with his MacGyvering... Anyhow, he only got one chair done, and this one has sat at the power-washed stage for the past few years. About a week ago or more, we bought some paint, curb side pickup style, as the hardware stores were still closed (they just reopened Saturday under new physical distancing rules) and I'd figured I'd get at least one of them repainted for the hop. Mother Nature decided otherwise: it has been cold, as in record-setting overnight low this past weekend of +1C, and not even staying above 10C several days in a row which is what one needs when one is painting outside. Ugh!

So please excuse my rather ratty-looking wicker chair. Focus on the new cushion and bolster pillow!

I've had these square foams for a few years, wanting to make covers for them to use in my wicker chairs.

I had the bolster pillow forms for many years, planned to make cushions for on our bed. Well it finally all has come together, though not as I'd originally thought. First of all I made the 18" square top using 36 squares of fabric. When Island Batik asks us to feature as many fabrics as possible in our projects, I deliver! All 20 are in here, and aren't they beautiful? I layered the quilt top with some scraps of Hobbs batting, and did a fast meander on my Bernina using Aurifil 50 wt.

I made the zipper section that would be part of the four sides band of fabric, so that I can remove and wash the cover.

Then the real figuring started. Note that the bulk of this project was during my 50-hour Yin Yoga Teacher Training Live online course I was doing all last week, seven days in a row...

My favourite since FOREVER is Schmetz needles; I've used them since I bought my sweet old '79 Elna. Microtex ones are wonderful for sewing batiks.

I figured it was just like a very wide binding, only I was applying it to two quilts, top and bottom! The second side was a bit awkward, but it worked out perfectly. I used the 'Star - Dark Forest' green chop on the bottom as well as the band. You can see the bottom of the second cushion below. That same green chop is the round sides of the Lake bolster cushion.

The cushions were done relatively quickly. I knew I wanted a word on each bolster back cushion. My favourite things outdoors are my Lake Erie and trees, trees, trees. (flowers too, but I only have two wicker chairs ha).
More letters paper-pieced from Sam Hunter's Quilt Talk book. Here they are on the design wall, before being sewn together, spacing between, which I learned is called kerning. Isn't this light within the collection divine? It's called 'Bush - Sprout'.

I saw a rectangular cushion on the back of a quilt magazine a while ago (do you think I could find it? Nope.) and wanted to make one, so I decided to use the idea on these cushions. This way they're kind of double-sided. I changed up the stripe design to my own liking by separating it from the 'Geometric Arrow' chop with 'Nordic Trees' in navy. I like this effect!

To give you an idea of what my second bolster cushion will look like once it's finished:
I plan to make the Trees bolster opposite to the Lake one: it will have the green chop as the main fabric with the Geometric Arrows fabric the round ends. I may also experiment with inserting a zipper or velcro so that I can wash the cover too.

I can't wait until the weather smartens up and I can actually use all this stuff!

I hope you'll visit the other bloggers posting this week. Click here to get the list. There are just two a day, so it's very do-able! Giveaways galore too!

Quilt Stats:
Pattern: Original design; text is from Quilt Talk by Sam Hunter; basket is from AccuQuilt
Size: square cushions: 18" square; bolster cushions: 8" x 16"; basket: 4.5" high by 5.5" wide
Fabric: Island Batik River Valley
Backing: Island Batik Star - Dark Forest
Batting: Hobbs Heirloom scraps; and polyester pillow inserts
Quilted: on my Bernina
Threads: pieced with Aurifil on my Bernina; quilted with Aurifil 50 wt; basket with Aurifil 12 wt

This week Island Batik is giving away TWO fabric bundles of.... River Valley! 👏💙💚Be sure to head to their blog, and/or click below to enter the giveaway. My own is different, so read carefully!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


For my giveaway I have a one-yard bundle of some of the leftover fabric! For a chance to win it, simply tell me if you like to dine 'al fresco', 'en plein air', outdoors, and where, at your home or at a restaurant.


Please leave your email within your comment if you are a no-reply blogger; otherwise I will have no way to contact you and will have to draw another name. Please know that I will read every comment, but due to larger numbers during giveaways, I won't be responding. I will choose a random winner at the end of the blog hop.

This is another on my Q2FAL list, yay. The post and the project was on last week's To Do Tuesday list, so getting these done makes me very pleased.


Linking up

73 comments:

  1. Your home decor items are eye catching. Island Batiks sent you a beautiful bundle for this challenge. My husband and I built an outdoor, covered kitchen area that is still more of a sitting area with lots of tools and supplies around waiting for installation. Our favorite outdoor restaurant is in the small town where we live, Burlington, Ky. The Washington Grill has good food and a very comfortable, three season patio. We are looking forward to the re-opening of restaurants in our state but will probably wait at least until late June to cautiously visit the Grill.
    Connie W.
    c_s_wolfe@yahoo.com

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  2. That is a beautiful line of fabric, Sandra! So perfect for your project. I really love your idea to have the matching basket with coasters and napkins on the table, too! We also have a nice deck with a table and comfy chairs to sit in and enjoy when the weather's nice. It would be fun to make some quilty items for that space!

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  3. Oh this fabric line is fantastic. I love all your projects, especially the pillow. We like to eat outside in our back yard when ever it is warm enough. We go to family and friends a lot to bbq in the summer. We do like to eat out in restaurants also.
    quilting dash lady at comcast dot net

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  4. Out door at a restaurant is always fun, if there are no bugs! Great projects, perfect colors.

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  5. This is gorgeous - not a surprise with these fabrics and you as a designer. I do love the idea of covers/coasters for glasses. The words, too, are perfect. Lovely job in the middle of an intense training.

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  6. Hello from SK! Our weather is the craps here, too. We had a couple really nice days in April and then cold and windy ever since. Great job on all of your projects. I've been loving getting to know Island Batiks and wish that I had more/better access to their fabrics. Have a wonderful day.

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  7. You've made that batik look irresistible! Love the cushions, big and small, and those chairs, even if they have yet to get that new paint job. I can imagine you spending a lot of lovely hours in them, even if you do need a parka.

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  8. When we first bought this house, we said it needed a covered patio. The dead got bigger as time went on, and in 2001, we added a three season room onto the back. It covers about half of the patio. We eat all our meals out there, from May until October. ( The snow prevented that, last week) I need to make the table some new placemats, so I would love to get the bundle.

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  9. Fabulous effort and a beautiful result. Can imagine you enjoying many happy hours outside.

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  10. Beautiful projects! I love to dine outdoors, but our Houston heat, humidity, and mosquito population foils my plan for most of the year. Still, I try for morning tea or coffe in the summer when I don't have to rush off to school. The patio is pleasant before the sun begins to beat down.

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  11. Gorgeous fabrics. One of my favorite designers is Bonnie Hunter. I've made many of her patterns but don't always go as scrappy as she does.

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  12. I love Becky Goldsmith's applique patterns and Bonnie Hunter's pieced ones. Thanks for the giveaway.

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  13. Don't eat outside much at all! Your chairs have 'CHARACTER' and made new again with these gorgeous projects! Thank you for sharing

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  14. We rarely eat outside as the weather in the summer is not conducive. We do eat outside occasionally when we visit family in Michigan. Your project is gorgeous. I love that you made coasters and napkins from the leftovers. We are long time cloth napkin users. :)

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  15. Going out to a restaurant is a real treat

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  16. Sandra, these are all so beautiful! What a wonderful set for spending time outside! We have a deck with a roof over it and a ceiling fan (important for North Carolina summers) and love to eat out there. We've been grilling a lot this spring and it's been nice to have an alternative place to eat during this crazy time. I don't have such lovely accessories made from River Valley, though! I love your square cushion best of all and should consider making something similar for our deck though 3D projects intimidate me.

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  17. I love your cushions, bolsters, napkins and basket; they are beautiful and so right for beside water. I love to dine outside in our garden; however, here in Scotland the days we can do that are rare so even more precious when we can do it. Actually we frequently sit in a polytunnel, with the door open, as that is a bit warmer and it feels like you are sitting outside but without the cold wind. :-)

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  18. I really like your pillows and cushions and other goodies. So very pretty!! I like to eat outside at home. Enjoy your day!! 🌻🌞 angielovesgary2 atgmail dotcom

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  19. Oh, I do love the fabric colors, and you used it to make great projects. I do enjoy eating outside either here on our patio or at a restaurant with outdoor tables. It will be great when we get a new grill. That always makes food taste so much better. Nancy A: SewingGranda@gmail.com

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  20. Some of my favorite designers are Jaybird Quilts, Thimble Blossoms and Cluck, Cluck Sew.

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  21. So pretty! I love to eat outside every chance I get, either at home on the deck or a local pub on the water. One of my favourite designers is Kim Brackett - very do-able and traditional but still interesting designs.
    basaran.family (at) rogers (dot) com

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  22. Beautifully done! Such lovely fabrics! I love to dine outside - by the lake or in the park or even my backyard to watch the birds! Thank you!! have a fabulous day!

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  23. Gorgeous colours. I love to BBque and eat on the patio every chance we can get in the spring thru fall. Thanks

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  24. Gosh, what gorgeous fabrics! And I love what you've made for your patio. So soothing and calming and relaxing, perfect for late afternoon musings or snoozings :)

    I admit I don't know the names of very many pattern designers. I tend to mostly sew "seat of the pants" style and make things up as I go!

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  25. Love the cushion and pillows!! The fabric is wonderful!! Eating on our screen porch is the best,!

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  26. Oh these look fabulous
    and will be comfortable.
    I like eating out at the
    restaurants and on their
    patios if the weather
    is nice.
    Carla from Utah

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  27. What a beautiful line of fabric. Love these colors. We don't eat outside too much. My husband is not a fan, but occasionally we drive thru a restaurant and eat in the car at the park. Love watching the birds and the squirrels scampering around.

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  28. Holey Moley, that yoga must've infussed you with some serious energy - you got a ton done! I love blue/green together, and your projects are just great! I've never tackled seat cushions (a bit of a yikes factor for me). I love the Lake pillow, though! And all the rest!

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  29. Lake and Tree, fantastic colours to make those letters show so well, and the bolster cushions, super. Eating, we mostly eat on our covered deck in summer, it is private and sheltered. These colours would be perfect for the table and placemats.

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  30. here in Texas we are limited to just a few months when it is not hot and i love to dine on the patio at dusk.

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  31. Love love love the bolster and cushions.

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  32. Gorgeous projects😍. My current favourite designers are then came June, lo and behold stitchery and centre street quilts

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  33. Wow! You did go to town. Great projects!! I like to eat outside whenever I can. We live in a coolish climate so it's a real treat when the weather is nice enough to eat out...and I love a picnic or bringing dinner to our local Shakespeare theater (when it's playing!). Thanks for sharing the great giveaway!

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  34. Beautiful projects! I love them all. I'm not picky about where I dine as long as it's with family and/or friends. I do enjoy picnics in the summer though.

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  35. Things always taste so good outdoors!! We used to have an afternoon lunch for a break for our family during haying time--sandwiches, peaches or other fruit, a dessert and tea or lemonade--So good!!! Your fabrics and projects are beautiful.
    barbkaup(at)(yahoo)(dot)(com)

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  36. This is a tough question because it depends on the weather(rain, snow, 100° + temp), location and amount of bugs-(flies, mosquitos), etc. Outdoors if nice. I like to cook (not bake). I like dining out. I guess I am an "either or". I love your cushion and pillow. I have chairs that need done, thank you for the inspiration and for sharing in the blog hop.

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  37. Oh this fabric line is fantastic they are my favorite colors too!

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  38. Your pillows and cushions are so pretty. I wish I had an outdoor space to have cushy chairs like yours. We do have a picnic table that we can eat at when the weather is nice..

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  39. The fabrics look so great in your projects. I like the green and blue together too.
    I like to eat outdoors (when it ever warms up!) Either on our deck with a cook-out, or on the "marketplace" downtown (if the virus ever lets us.)

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  40. I would like to dine outdoors, but I have a lot of allergies to things like grass, pollens, etc. I rarely dine outside, but I love the cushions you made. Thanks for sharing.

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  41. Grilled burgers and hot dogs always taste better when we eat outdoors on the patio. You give me ideas for outdoor cushions and a tablecover.

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  43. You are certainly primed and ready for outdoor living, Sandra! All we need now is some summer weather! Island Batik sure knows what tickles your fancy with colors! These blues and greens are wonderful for outdoor pieces and you used them all so perfectly! We love eating outside under the umbrella on our deck. It's always weather dependent, though, and the bugs must be minimal for me to enjoy it. I hope you're staying well...I know you're busy!
    duchick at gmail dot com

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  44. You knocked it out of the park! Well done on all these projects. You lucked out getting a great fabric collection in your colours.

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  45. What lovely fun cushions! I like to eat outside when it is not too hot or cold.

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  46. I'm not a fan of outdoor eating. Too many bugs around for my liking! :)

    Sandy A

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  47. Love the Lake, outdoor theme. Yes I like to eat outdoors at home.
    slrdowney at hotmail dot com

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  48. The cushion is too pretty to sit on! I hate all the mosquitoes around here so I eat inside. We have big windows but they sure are dirty.

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  49. Beautiful greens and blues! Love the lake pillow!

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  50. Love those fabrics! And such a cute way to use them. Thank you for sharing.

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  51. What a wonderful way to spruce up the patio furniture! I don't like to eat outside - but I love to have drinks out there! Thanks!

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  52. I love your pillows. I love to eat outdoors, but insects tend to ruin the fun.

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  53. I love your pillows and coaster's, also blue and greens are my favorite colors too. We have a picnic area in our backyard with a fire pit, picnic table and some hammocks. I make a lot of our meals out there in the summer months and I need new pillows for my hammocks, these colors would look so good out there. Thank you for the chance to win. cindy.keence@sbcglobal.net

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  54. Hi Sandra! What wonderful cushions! And these fabrics are to die for - I tried to pick a favorite and could not. Although, that print you used for the sides and back looks pretty darn cool. I don't think I saw one single photobomb by my favorite pup. What the heck?? Did you make him stay inside?!! Since the pandemic started, I really enjoy eating at home now. So much better than eating out except the whole not-cooking thing certainly has its charm. Outdoors is nice except we always have a stiff breeze or too many bugs. I like to grill, though. ~smile~ Roseanne

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  55. Eating outside at our own picnic table is always a winner! Love your colorful summery creations!

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  56. Lovely projects with lovely fabrics. You really got a lot done. We had two large wicker chairs but had to donate them when we moved from a house to a condo. We kept our small outdoor dining set and I am enjoying eating out in the solarium. I even cross stitch out there, and frequently sit in the solarium with the kitties in the afternoon. I really need to make some place mats.

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  57. Kathy R.
    Nice cushions & pillows. The foam waited for the right fabric. A half hours drive there is a small fish market across from a municipal marina. They make seafood sandwiches & platters for take-out and we park in the municipal lot and eat in the car or on a nice day on the at one of the benches. petuniakr@aol.com

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  58. Such a beautiful ensemble for the outdoors. You have the greatest information about fabric and styles and the colors you had to work with were just gorgeous. You will enjoy this all summer long! I like to eat outdoors at the park or on the patio at a restaurant.

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  59. I don't care where I eat as long as someone else cooks it! LOL!

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  60. Gosh, I love this fabric line and you did a wonderful job highlighting the collection! Eating outdoors at home is great (bugs and weather permitting).
    deb(dot)rick(at)live(dot)com

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  61. I do enjoy eating outside. We have a lovely back porch, screened in. I love to sit out there in the morning with my breakfast. Then some nights we enjoy the cool breeze. Thanks for the giveaway

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  62. These are my colors! Blue and green, with a touch of yellow. Wasps scare me, so I limit my al fresco to tea and chocolate chip cookies. A78mandel at yahoo dot com

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  63. Food tastes better when you eat it outside! Love your cushions.

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  64. Oh my gosh, you really did go to town with these beautiful fabrics! Beautiful creations and beautiful photography! Thanks for the inspiration. My favorite dining is outdoors, packing a picnic and taking it on a hiking trail. I love climbing the bluffs around the Mississippi River and then looking down at the river valley. These fabrics remind me of that view! Thanks for this generous giveaway! pk_sews at yahoo dot com

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  65. I love eating outside at home. As we live in the Pacific Northwest sunny, dry, warm days are days to celebrate!

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  66. I love to eat outdoors!! I am a native Southern Californian, and we grew up eating in our backyard, or taking food to the beach. When we moved to a rural property in Oregon I longed for a wooden picnic bench on the grass out back, where we could enjoy a meal, watch out dogs play, see the horses and the goats, and appreciate the beautiful landscape. Guess what? Fifteen years later, I finally have it and it is beautiful! I am so happy. And isn't this the perfect time to have an "outdoor dining experience" here at home?

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  67. I prefer to eat at home! Your projects are great! Love the fabric colors.
    nikilsend(at)outlook(dot)com

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  68. We prefer to eat at home. We eat outdoors when the weather is comfortable as we live in AZ.
    sew(dot)goodwitch(underscore)crafts(at)yahoo(dot)com

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  69. I like to eat outdoors on the deck when it is nice out in the spring!

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  70. Beautiful COllection of fabrics! and I like the projects you made with it!

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  71. I love these uses of the bundle. Those fabrics are definitely you!! And Lake and Trees! So calming. I like how you made the cushions with the quilting on the top and plain fabric on the bottom and sides. We have a nice deck, but we don't eat out there. It's usually too breezy, and we spend time chasing things. Our indoor table looks over the the deck, though, so it's almost like being outside. I do quilt out there with something fun to drink. I suppose we will eventually have to get used to eating outside at restaurants, as that might be a big thing for the foreseeable future, at least when the weather's nice.

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  72. Blues and greens are my favorite colors. Love your cushions and the basket to.
    So glad spring is here to have my coffee and breakfast on The deck.
    Thanks for my favorite color fabric giveaway.
    djcutting2(at)gmail(dot)com.

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  73. You totally scored with the beautiful fabrics sent to you! These would be in my top favourites too. You have made some very lovely projects, I look forward to seeing them on your finished wicker chairs. If you paint your chairs white again I can see the new cushions will be stunning on them. Thanks for sharing at the Chameleon's Colour & Inspiration Party.

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