Apr 30, 2012

FAB challenge---some progress

I have continued to work on the "My Sunshine" FAB challenge piece throughout the weekend and was pleased to get 4 blocks completed and attached before I quit for the evening last night.  Woohoo!  Finally got a little something I can show on the blog anyway.

But this morning I took a good look at it and realized that the 4th block of a barn raising set needed to start angling down the other direction if the chains are to be symmetrical.  Oh oh!  I knew I had directional prints at the centers.  That meant that I was going to have to watch  how the rings of color were placed.  The blocks cannot be rotated in quarter turn increments as one normally would do this set.    Here I had started ALL the black strips on the left hand vertical on all the blocks.  On closer inspection, 4th block starts on the top, 5th block on the bottom and 6th block on the top.  I caught it before I got too far in though and it wasn't all stitched together.  Minor un-sewing on the center I plan to use for the 5th and 6th.  I had a doctor's appointment so just stuff the mess in purse with a seam ripper and did it while I waited to be seen.

Here it is 2:30 or so and I am back where I was at 6:30 BUT fixed.  Well, make that a little bit ahead since the black frames are fixed on the end blocks.    That 4th block is NOT wonky---what sits behind it on the book shelf juts out so it is making it look like I messed up----AGAIN!   32 blocks to go!

I had all the colored strips cut out last week but elected to leave them as strips and cut them to size as I need them for each round, isolating one block at a time to follow the color placement around the cut panel pieces. I am liking the Marti Michell for 1 and 2 inch finished width log cabin ruler for doing this.  It is really easy to see where the length lines need to be cut as there are not cluttering lines.  Log cabins are a personal pattern favorite of mine so I can see using this again and again.   I've got tons of strips in the scrap bags!

This is how it started off life with some strips Cher included in with the panel gift.  The wider ones were cut down for this project but the red dot strip wound up in the Album blocks I was making last week.  I will feature the small panel pieces and the whacked up panel bits in the centers of the log cabins as you see above.  Even the three mountain pieces are cut apart!

I didn't get to Sisters on my Dream Trip to Oregon a few years back but I did see the Sisters peaks from the air!  Pat and her daughter were on the same flight as I was to Dallas but sitting a few seats up from me.  (We would take flights to BHM and WI respectively from there get home.) The lady that Pat was sitting with was either from Oregon or traveled there often.  She pointed the peaks out to Pat and then Pat to me.  Of course, there was Mount Hood on the flight into PDX as well.  Beautiful, just beautiful.   Maybe someday  I'll make it back that way---the dream continues.

I am hoping that I will get in a bit of a rhythm on the blocks because I would like to get the bulk of this pieced in the next two weeks time, rather than abandon another top like I did last week.  There is a quilt show this weekend and I have entries to deliver for that by mid week and the show itself is Saturday.  Other than that this is the quieter week.  Next week, not so much!

And sew it goes-----------

Apr 28, 2012

catching up

So what have I been up to in the creative department since my last post, you might ask?  It is my blog so I will tell you even if you DON"T ask, LOL.

I made a few more "granny square" blocks using the Blue Elephant tutorial but not following it exactly.  As I said in my last post, 8 pieces of it can be strip pieced so that is what I am doing.  Also I think from here on out I am going to call this by its original name Album Block.   BlockBase lists 8 different ones for what is a very similar block if you add a square in the smack dab middle of the block.

LOL DJ asked me why I had my pillows lying on the floor and the bed unmade in the middle of the day.  Pictures of course!  I still need to trim down the blocks.  I am shooting for 20 blocks and pairs if I can, reversing the two colors. It might make a larger than usual donation quilt but kids come in all sizes.  BUT I set it aside.

My sister caught up to me on facebook with a knitting question.  She wanted to make a baby blanket for someone using a pattern that she wanted to reduce just a bit in size.  I thought I had an answer for her but needed to verify that I was correct and the change would work.  So I drug out the knitting supplies and went to work.  I was not seeing a pattern emerge as I thought and discovered that I was not doing the yarn overs it called for correctly.  I was increasing stitches but not leaving the bigger holes that the picture showed.   I considered continuing on since I was having fun knitting!   I could tell there was a dramatic enough change in the previous rows, to my eyes anyway, so I just unraveled it.  Should I want to do this for a child I would pick a soft green or yellow rather than the leftover yarn from the replacement golf head covers that I made DJ a few years back.  I love to knit but wish I had more time to do it.

DJ's birthday is today but  we went out for lunch at Golden Corral yesterday.  He told me not to make any cake or pie for him since he knew he could get as many desserts as he wanted at the buffet.   We still have cookies left from the sew-in if he wants a homemade treat.  Actually I sort  of have plans to make him some "not a birthday" cupcakes in a week or so using this recipe for Nutella Fudge Brownie Cupcakes with Mocha Buttercream Frosting    A pal who decorates told me what I needed to get to pipe icing so I'm ready to play but down the line.   I can even do filled cupcakes with this giant syringe like thing from Wilton called Dessert Decorator Plus.  Let the fun begin!

I knew I was going to be sewing with the FABs today on the Sister's Challenge panel that Cher had sent us sometime back.  You can read about it in this post.  I had cut out my choice of pattern about a week ago but now I can talk about it, LOL,  Most of the fabric was purchased with birthday money from the Belles and DJ so I am happy to have the chance to put it to use.

I didn't think out of the box too much here.  I chose the My Sunshine pattern by Kathy Deggendorfer who designed the fabrics for In the Beginning Fabrics.  We had to use the panel in some manner so I elected to cut the little animal squares into 4 1/2 inch squares and then made cheesecloth of the larger panel.  I bought a 2nd panel so I could get more blocks out of it, or 3 repeats of the 8 main motifs that way and augment it with other sections of the panel and a companion floral.   The squares of the panel were not quite square so I framed them with black as the first rounds of the log cabin.  I felt it needed something like that since there is so much color and detail in the block centers that a bit of separation would help.  One side of the block is blue and the other essentially green.  Each log will finish at 1 inch for a 12 inch block.  The quilt will be about 90 inches square.

Here is what it looks like in my work space.  Messy but the information I need at my fingertips.   I plan on keeping the 2nd panel intact to put on the back of the quilt.  At this point I am approximately 1/4 of the way done since I will be doing 4 strips on either side of the centers.  One thing I did not consider when I started this:  the centers are directional prints.  I will not be able to rotate the block for the traditional Barn Raising set.  I will have to be very careful to not have birds flying upside down, rivers floating backwards and mountains upside down.   Oh, I can do it correctly but need to be watchful and follow the drawing across the row.  I have the duplicate centers separated out in groups so will just do them one at a time rather than chain them as shown in the pattern.  Also I prefer to cut them to size so they do not get all wonky and off square.  I have tried it the other way and was not happy with the results.

I won't have much to show for my efforts for a few days anyway.  Norma was working on something using a Sidelights pattern for hers but rearranging things.  Pat some 9 patches and Cher, some lettering while Pam was considering treating as though she was looking out the scene from a window.  I'll be anxious to see how our challenge pieces turn out!

And sew it goes-----

Apr 25, 2012

Sew-in date: quilts hiding in your scrap bag

What a fun day sewing with my Bama Belle pals yesterday! We had an extended meeting and everyone brought their machines ready to "hit it" along with cut 2 1/2 inch strips galore, cut 2 1/2 inch squares and nickel squares/charms. Everything was free game so dig in---take some for "homework".  Jane even had some yardage to share!

8 of us "regulars" were there but so were 3 of our gals who cannot come very often. We were happy that Pat's schedule allowed her to be with us as well as Linda C who was back down visiting from Tennessee. Nancy has a conflict in the schedule since her church's quilting day is the same as ours but they meet at the church catty corner to where Belles meet so she pops over occasionally. That is what Shawnee did later in the day.

Bev who is recuperating from major surgery did not want to be left out of the fun and had her husband drop her off for a bit. She brought her yo-yo bag of tricks to show us how to do it especially with some of the fun shapes. In the "pass it around to try it" mode, I was almost happy to see that someone else had made a few stitches sewing it to the disc, like had! LOL. Betsy and Gary also swung by----I think Betsy must have insisted they do so on their way back from the BHM hospital and an overnight stay after a procedure she had had on Monday! These two are dedicated!

We also had two other guests---Judy and Gladys. Judy is Teresa's sister and she brought her friend Gladys with her. Turns out Gladys knew Lois from square dancing! I hope they will come back when they can!

Between Lois, Beverly and I---and I think someone else had a bag to share---we had boxes, bins and bags of the aforementioned strips and squares.  There were books and printouts to share for ideas of how to use them.  I had not picked a sew-in block as I often do and asked the Belles to crank as many as they cared to make.  There's the supplies--come up with an idea.

I wish I had gotten more pictures but I was busy sewing!  Lois, Pat and Brenda got right into Bonnie Hunter's Scrappy Trips.  Marilyn had a 4 patch quilt already started but was looking for sashing supplies among the strips.  Beverly and Judy were making string blocks on telephone book pages.   Later Judy had switched to big 4 patches though.   Jane was working on at strippie heart and I need to ask her the designer as it is really, really cute!  I was doing the Granny Squares from the Blue Elephant blog but strip piecing parts of it.  (8 sections of the white and adjacent print can be strip pieced but you still need some single cuts for the nine patch in the dead center and 4 background squares).   Below the total of my day's output.

I didn't leave Teresa out!  Earlier in the week she had told me about some leftover Toy Fabric that she wanted to make a pro bono quilt with.   Her cut squares were 8 inches presently so what size should she cut it down to?  I said 5 inch and had suggested a Jewel Box or Buckeye Beauty quilt.   She could try the two for one method for both the 4 patches and half square triangles needed to accomplish that plus still have fabric leftover from the bulk of the cut down for another 2 1/2 inch strip.  I demo'd that to Teresa, Judy and Gladys.  Then later when Judy had giant 4 patches from the nickel squares Teresa suggested Disappearing 4 patches  so I showed them how to do that!  I like it a bit better with 6 1/2 inch squares so that little cut part in the middle is not so tiny and suggested that.   I love making Puss in the Corner blocks (uneven nine patches) from the 5 inch ones and walked them through the process since I had a print out of the Billie Lauder quick trick method in my nickel container.

I hope this gave the Belles some new ideas of how to work with scraps.  The pattern ideas are endless, in my estimation.  Scraps are like gold when you can discover the quilts hiding your scrap bag  We have a ton of cut 2 1/2 inch squares left so that might need to be the focus for our next sewing date.  Beverly had a picture in one of her jelly roll books of a clever idea that would use some cut squares and of course, there are always the blocks that incorporate 16 patches too.

I know I came home with considerably less in my strip container than I had and did not drag home more than I took with me IF you discount the cute fish yardage from Jane---and that's good!   The little wire basket I stuff odds and ends in is filling up and will need attention one of these days at this rate.

Good food, good fellowship and sharing, good learning experiences---does it get any better than that?  Girlfriend days are the best!  Yeah, I probably get more done if I sew at home but trust me, the company is better at a quilt meeting.   I appreciate the girls help getting the room back to its original configuration too.  We were the only thing on the church calendar when I booked it for an extended meeting but a church event had re-scheduled so we started packing it all in around 4.  I think I got home about 4:30 anyway.  

Again, I wish I had taken more pictures.  Linda C had been working with wool quite a bit and had a lot of penny rugs and such done.  Brenda and I were discussing the blocks you see below two weeks ago---and look how neat her Santa's came out!   She still needs to blanket stitch them down and add the eyes and such but the blocks were all prepped.  I showed my March Button Up, Bloom since Linda C passed on her pattern when she was done with it and my new purse/backpack.

Shawnee also attends the quilt group at the catty corner church but she came by to drop off this quilt she had tied.  It was one that Linda C had made and left for us when she moved to TN.  I love how the 4 patches chain on this one.  Simple squares, 4 patches and hour glass blocks---simple yet very effective.  Shawnee got some batting to go with three more tops of Linda's tops but no pinning, only sewing at this day.  We'll help her with that at a future meeting.  Note to self:  call and order the batting roll since we are almost out.  Lois and I both have tops to pin and that is even before we have finished tops that will generate from the sew-in!  Of course, I need to quilt a bunch too as a lot of our pins are tied up in the tops on my dresser.

On a more personal note:
I spent most of last weekend cutting for the FAB challenge sewing on Saturday plus tons of muslin for the sew-in.  I did manage to get the binding at least machine applied to 76 bowties but that is as far as it got with baking more cookies for sew-in, home duties and packing up the car.  Today I plan to make a few more granny square blocks and move that along a little further.  Cher said it was okay to get a jump start sewing on the challenge project.  I think Norma and I will sew together on Friday since she has the day off.   Mine is a large quilt so I could use a little head start, LOL.

And sew it goes---------

Apr 21, 2012


I have been falling down on the "goals"/day's plans the last couple of days---mostly piddling.

I had gone out to see one of my quilting/FB pals on Thursday morning and enjoyed both the drive over (through the back of the old Fort McClellan) AND the visit. In spite of her only being a week postop at that point we went upstairs to see her wonderful sewing space that her husband had carved out of some of the attic space! What I wouldn't give to have cupboards and a walk in storage closet! Bev showed me some of the things she was working on. She also knew that I was looking to put a flower or something on my completed purse/backpack. She lent me her little yo-yo maker for that basket block embellishment.

Now, I have never used my extra large Clover yo-yo maker yet though I have had thoughts of slowly making some over time.  A recent quilting magazine showed a quilt from Terry Atkinson, one of my all time fav designers, with rows of yo yo's on a teal background.  I even have a small heart yo-yo that came in the 1st place prize basket for the quilt show in TN but never had it out of the package yet.  But I have some things that need the embellishment, all the sudden!

Bev had recently shown us how to do a dimensional flower and I thought that was what I was going to do.  Then she started sending me links to video's on how to use the Clover deal.   Oh oh!  I was primed to follow along now.   One video hooked 6 yo-yo's or as she called them, Suffolk puffs,  together to form a flower that was adorable!

I would settle for just getting ONE made properly!  The first attempt I cut the seam allowance too small and my stitching was not holding it down enough.  2nd attempt, I actually sewed it to the base following the wrong holes around the edge.  3rd time was a charm.

After all that messing around, I wondered if doing the covered button was going to be as big an adventure.   Nothing to worry about there with those little pushers and holders.  Since I can see some sheen with the camera flash behind the fabric, I wonder if I should have interfaced it or something???    The picture shows the finished product.  The purple matches the interior of the purse and the zipped pocket linings.

Looking at the fabric leftovers from the purse, I still had interfaced pieces and searched around for my wonder wallet pattern.  I have another wallet pattern around here somewhere but could not lay hands on it---that led to a notebook search later but it still has not turned up leading me to think I may have loaned it out???  While I listened to the Cardinal-Pirates game last night I whipped this up.  Pam makes hers with the elastic band around them rather than velcro and a button so I did the same using hers for an example but not before basting the elastic down in the wrong spot, LOL.   I do carry two wonder wallets though as I keep the grocery money separately in the 2nd.  It will help that they look totally different.

Two things though----I need to get some 1/4 inch elastic the next time at the store and I hate decor-bond.  Not only was it hard to get to adhere to the fabric (which I had pre-washed for a change) but it is too heavy and too stiff.  Heavy weight interfacing will do for me but not decor-bond.

Today's plan:  Cher's FAB challenge using the Sister's panel seen in this post .  We are meeting next Saturday to sew on this so I really, really need to cut out my stuff to kit it up for sewing day.  I think Cher okay'd some preliminary sewing too but that won't happen till I cut!  I have a small errand to run and then I AM cutting and kitting.  Enough of this goofing around, LOL.

Apr 18, 2012

3 more finishes

two small finishes and one more button up is officially done.

 The basket block will need some velcro added to the back in order to hang it and ir really needs some embellishment.  Yo- yo's with buttons, I'm thinking.

"Bloom" is also officially done.  I had it bound and the buttons were sewn on but I did the bee's flight lines this morning.

Late for this Easter but early for next----the March button up but I left the month off so it had  a longer shelf life.

What is next??  I would dearly love to take a break to piece something---like maybe finish up my set aside Popsicle Stix last seen in early February HERE or in the following post when I had to pack it up to work on the 3 QOV quilts I had committed to do.  BUT I still have binding to put on one of those QoV's and the row quilt QOV to quilt.

The other thing that needs to be done is cut for Cher's FAB day.  I may do that first and then get started on the QOV stuff.   We have learned that the facility is to open in early July so that does buy a little more time but I need those outta here.   Okay plan is made.   Jammie time for this girl!

Apr 17, 2012

one finish anyway!

A finish, finally! I thought I would play with Bev's flowers but wound up starting on the binding stack instead.

I've got more binding to go on the other three recent quilted items---two are much smaller so that's helpful.

This one is all hand appliqued, except for the letters.

Apr 16, 2012

Catch up post

As usual I have been keeping busy since my last week's mid-week post.

  • I quilted up Two Blonde Mice's "Bloom Where You're Planted"  shown HERE,  the two recently completed March and April Button Up wall hangings and a little slightly adapted  6 inch basket block from The Farmer's Wife Sampler that I whipped up last week.  (It is going to go a different wall hanging piece for May.)  Between quilting and baking up 5 dozen Oatmeal Toffee cookies for the sew-in that took care of two days "play time"

  • Friday was the Friendship Quilters Spring Fling Sew-In.  This time we were off to the Camp Chula Vista Christian Conference and Retreat Center near Pell City.  Well, the sew-in had actually started on Thursday but we had not planned to attend that day.  That's pushing it especially since I had been gone a good part of Tuesday for Bama Belles.  The building you see on the left that looks like a  modified T was where we met. We had two large rooms on the first level, one for our lunch and one for sewing.  I had been there before years ago for a retreat but we sewed on smaller rooms on the lower level---this was much better. The lodging rooms are just to the right and have been  recently renovated.  No TVs, phones or any of the typical hotel features but you are just in the rooms to sleep or rest at a retreat.   They are planning a retreat here in October and our next sew-in July may be here as well.   Lovely, peaceful setting back in the woods.   
image from their website

  • With all the quilting, I had not had time to cut or prepare the sections that needed to be interfaced prior to the sew-in.  It seemed like I spent an inordinate amount of time on Friday trying to get decor-bond to stick down to my fabric choices.  Jane and I left for home a little after 3 so I was home in time for supper.   Aline had come as well but drove herself.   She keeps her great-granddaughter a good bit and it was time for Lily Grace to see her maternal grandmother who lives near Pell City.  

  • I did not have the machine I wanted to use to sew some blocks for a quilt we will be raffling in the guild so I had  "homework" to do.  The prez and her helpers had paper bags set up with kits for the blocks.  We were to make up the block(s), put them back in the bag with our name on it and that would give us 5 chances towards winning the finished quilt.  Then we all can purchase tickets for the drawing to be done at our Christmas party.  This will be a fund raiser as we hope to get our own frames built for our next quilt show (in two years time) rather than scramble to borrow them from another guild.  So they used the granny square tutorial  from Blue Elephant's blog using a variety of greens and floral prints with the same  yellow centers and white background.  I made 3 of them but didn't take a picture.  Use your imagination, LOL.

  • Saturday, mostly I sewed though we had time out for a short business meeting, it being our normal 2nd Saturday meeting date.   Two members of the guild are getting married in early May down in New Orleans.  Margaret and her fiance Walt were feted with a lovely cake and a gift card from the guild.  

  • Mostly I sewed and sewed.......... and sewed some more.  Shelia was so patient trying to get me to a stopping off point.  I don't wear a watch so I had no way of knowing that it was almost 7 p.m. when I started packing up.  Bernèe and I were still stitching away, her on her Quilt of Valor and me on my version of Carol's Convertible Purse.   Shelia and Dixye have made several of these in the past.  The bag has long straps so you can use the purse as a backpack or carry it as a shoulder bag.   By the time I stopped to get a bite to eat in Pell City and drove home I pulled in my drive at 8:45, almost 12 hours since I had left the house that morning.  Good thing we had decided early on that I would drive myself!  Jane and Terri came together and could leave when they were ready.

  • Sunday---I had no intention of sewing all day!  I thought if anything, I could work on the binding on any of the recently quilted wall hangings.  Uh, that didn't happen.  I had grocery errands and supper to fix.    Poor neglected husband had had to fend for himself, LOL.  When I left Saturday mornings, I pointed out that there was ravioli in the freezer and "here's some pasta sauce to heat up"----surely he could take care of his supper if I was not home in time.  See above--- good thing he had not waited for me!  There was a Cardinal game to listen to on Gameday, computer stuff to fool with, day of rest though I later did finish up the little bit of sewing left to do on my bag.   

The two tweedy looking areas are exterior pockets.   Shelia had put little velcro tabs on hers which I sorta wish I had done but I was lagging behind the other two pupils.   She had used binding on the top of the pockets as well so it set them off a little better.   Denise was making hers for her granddaughter so had put a tab at least one side to hold a cell phone.  I like both ideas.   The pin is marking the spot where I have something planned.  

I had a little problem getting the interior lined up properly so ignore the rumples.  I'll do better on the next one as I think I would prefer putting binding all around the outside, skip the flap and put in a zipper placket like you do with the Tag-along Totes that I have made in the past.   I wanted to add in the key fob thing as it is a feature I like in one of my purchased pocket books.  Note the interior color as I have something more to say about it in a minute, LOL.  There is an interior pocket that Shelia suggested sewing some lines if you wanted separation for pens, etc but the pattern calls for an interior zipped pocket as well--behind the front of the purse.   I took these next two shots before it was technically finished if you spot a pin...... or four!

This is the back, with another zippered section.   Dixye has made a black and white fabric version of this and uses the back for her front.  This thing is so stiff with interfacing that it is standing alone pretty easily.  Not sure I would do that much of it again.  I swear that zipper line is in there straight, not leaning like this pictures is making it look.

That brings up to this morning----usual stuff.  Computer playing, following up on things from the quilt meeting, updating my blog (obviously!), laundry.  I still need to type up the rest of the meeting minutes so will do that shortly.  My sewing plans for the day include trying out one of Bev's flowers like the ones she did for Angellyn's quilt-----

I want to put the flower on the front flap to dress it up a bit with the leftover purple interior fabric and add a covered button or yo-yo for the center of the flower.  Maybe make another wonder wallet as well though I have one already that has the same fabric (in that tag-along tote link).  I carry two wallets though---one is mine and the other is the household grocery money.  I've got some pieces fused and cut already that I will probably have to toss if I don't make a wallet.  

Time to put the tuna melts in the oven and fold towels.  And sew it goes----------

Apr 11, 2012

16 patches and other stuff

What a good meeting we Bama Belles had yesterday!  We had two guests:  Bev's neighbor who has sewn in the past but does not quilt came along with her and we had a little almost one year old grand come w/ her Mim.  Let me tell you, Lily Grace was charming everyone in her path,  including the pastor.

We also a couple of sharing/learning opportunities.  Bev showed us how she does her dimensional flowers.  I had a planned demo on how to mark bias lines for cross hatching as well as how to cut bias and use bias press bars---two things that had come in conversation since our last meeting.   Another opportunity came up because Lois had brought in some orphan blocks and some foundation piecing printouts to share.  I had the machine set up for my demo so I sat Bev and Rita down to show her how to get started with that.

Teresa got her special quilt for her recently married DS and DIL pinned and she is on the right track now about piecing a huge back for another special quilt for her husband.  I had helped her trim and square that up a few meetings back.  It's the Desert Mirage shown HERE.   My pinned  donation stack atop the armoire increased by 2 (now 11 but one is not mine)  and I think Lois had two tops as well.  One of them a "Chiclet/Whatever You Want to Call It".

Seeing her quilt got me thinking, especially since we are having the sew-in day in two weeks time.  We plan on focusing on 2 1/2 inch strips, 2 1/2 inch squares and charm squares.  So what ideas can we use to use up those scraps.

I had seen a pieced heart block on FB that a friend's quilt shop was using for a cancer fund raiser.  They called it "Fight Like a Quilter"  I'll find the link and update this.  Anyway, it is a block that I have seen before but drew up in EQ.  Lots of 2 inch squares for a finished 10 inch block---bigger if you frame it all around with background fabric.

Then I was drawing again this morning---  "Road to St. Louis" that is shown in Trudie Hughes book Even More.   I could have sworn that I actually have the blue I show cut out for this but I cannot lay my hands on it anywhere.  I know there is a pile of 2 1/2 inch cut squares around here as well so it is possible that it is all in the same location, bagged up.   This will work if you keep the background and flying geese/hour glass blocks a constant.

Another one that intrigues me is Sunny Lanes.  This one looks a little more planned with the way I have it colored.  I re-drew it to eliminate some lines where the blocks would join meaning that it is assembled more by the row, instead of piles of individual blocks.

Then we have the "Chiclets/whatever you want to call it" .  I arranged this one like a strippie with a half step drop.  I have another version drawn like a zig zag and have actually made that version, some time block.  Why do I call it "whatever you want to call it" , you might ask??  See that post from back in April 06.  I know of at least 4 ways to piece it and they all end up looking the same.  So who do you give credit for it???

And here is the last one I was fiddling with though it will not use 2 inch squares.   The block is called Bridle Path  Brackman #1150 but I modified the center section, put it on point and added a snowball block alternating.

Actually I have piece a limited pallete donation quilt using a sashed and cornerstoned version-----kind of a Valentine's Day look, as I recall.  The center is slightly different but it has a few more lines eliminated at center.

I have some quilting to do---2 button ups, Bloom and that a little basket block I whipped up for my May multi-seasonal banner.  I don't know how much I'll get done since DJ is on the list for a haircut and I'll have to cut supper at some point.   Tomorrow I would like to get ready for the Saturday purse/backpack class and bake some cookies to share so I best get busy with today's plans.   I won't have to haul my machine on Friday if I have binding to do.

Apr 6, 2012


What do I want to work on today? There are no shortage of choices!  I did get a few things done since I last posted.  Mending job is done, carrot tops appliqued.  The Farmer's Wife Sampler block drawing project is done. I even have that to  "the quilt top stage" though I will probably keep tweaking it.  Some of those blocks just don't look right on point---sorry!

So do I---------

QUILT?  I got these pinned on Tuesday evening but haven't started doing the honors yet.  I could also put the binding on my 76 Bow tie QOV for some next week meeting(s) hand work.

CUT?  Friendship Quilters is having a sew-in April 12-14.  I have tons of things kitted up that I could sew on but there is also a class on making a purse that has straps that would convert it to a backpack.  I've got the cutting direction posted above the cutting/pressing table but still need to pull fabric.  I know it means a run for either Decor-Bond or heavy duty interfacing as I only have the lightweight variety on hand.  The supply list also asks for two zippers and D rings, which I may or may not have.

FINISH CUTTING?  Cher's bday is coming up and the FABS did not get to sew on her special day as the rest of us did once the cycle was complete.  Instead, she had sent each of us a panel piece "Nature's Symphony" from the 2011 Sisters Outdoor Quilt Show.  (Scroll down a bit to see the panel)  This was to be a challenge piece but we never really got it scheduled.  We are shooting for later in the month.

I know what I am going to do. I even purchased most of the fabrics last year with birthday money the Bama Belles and my husband had given me.  (THX again to all of you!)   I need just a tad more since my plan changed slightly but I cut up the panel that I must use.  Some of it must show up somewhere in the piece, in some fashion.  A little drawing in EQ verified how to proceed, once the order arrives.   But I could do some cutting in the meantime and get things kitted up for the sewing day.  I think Cher said we can get started sewing too if we want.  We just want a day or a few hours of sewing together and chatting!

SEW?   Some questions have arisen from a couple of the Belles about how to mark cross hatching for quilting as well as how to use bias press bars.  The two items are sort of related.  I have a basket block cut out that will either go on my Katrinka Designs "Multi-Seasonal Calendar Quilt" to cover May OR become part of a Basket Sampler since I have some fabrics friends have sent me.  Either way, this thing needs a curved handle and I need a demo piece for our meeting next week.   I spent some time yesterday preparing some hand outs and other general reference material that I think would be helpful.

APPLIQUE?  Well, there is always this one.  I piddle with it off and on since I am doing the April button up by hand.   It would be faster to just give up and machine button hole it but I have gone this far with it with only the letters fused down.  I did one raindrop last night and part of another before I packed it in----wooooo.

Chances are, I will go with a combination of things.  It may take longer to get something done but I don't get bored with any one thing.   My inclination is to do the little basket block first though.   BUT first, a foray to the kitchen.  I need to make a seafood pasta salad that will be our supper tonight and Skyler is parked by the keyboard waiting for me to give him a treat bite and/or play with him.

And sew it goes----------

Apr 2, 2012

WIP Monday?

There is no "work" going on here, LOL.  I am still in my pajamas playing on the computer though I should do something about THAT soon before the morning gets away from me!  I do NOT want to be out grilling brats come noon time, looking like this.

It is not for a lack of anything to do.  While I hand appliqued the orange parts of the carrots, I still need to machine applique the carrot tops.  The backing still needs seamed----Mom, you recognize that piece, of course and I think I will pretty much shoot what is left. April's tulips and leaves could be hand appliqued and hiding behind all that stuff is a pair of
slacks that needs the waistband re-stitched in spots where the thread  unraveled.  I've got a QOV to bind too.

Yesterday I wasn't interested in doing any of that stuff.  I allow myself to go off on other tangents because I know that is what sparks my creativity.  I had spent a good part of the week doing paperwork and following up on things for Bama Belles and Friendship Quilters.  In between, Angellyn's quilt.   There are still a few more items on the "to-do" list in that area but there are slowly getting dealt with.

So what has captured my attention?  Farmer's Wife Sampler Quilt but not because I have seen anything online about it.  LOL, I have since I told Norma yesterday what I was up to.  She sent a link and that leads to another link, and another......well, you get the idea.   Turns out there is a whole Flickr quilt-a-long  group out there posting their blocks from the book---who knew?

Some back story----I had bought the book way back in August 2010 with birthday gift money that the Belles had given me.  I bought the book for the letters, not the block patterns.  Well, there really are not patterns, per se, anyway.   It all uses templates which all have an assigned number.  The CD that came with the book has the templates in pdf form and prints out one per page.What a waste of paper/ink just to measure something out to rotary cut it!!   Once I found out there were groups dedicated to doing this quilt, then I found the resource links.  Tips, Helps and Corrections to the book. There must have been a whole lot complaints similar to mine  because there is a free download for the templates organized by BLOCK, rather than a numbered one per page HERE.  That is an improvement anyway.  Still not quite there for me though.  They list a companion CD that would work in EQ 6 but I don't even see it sold by Electric Quilt though they do give FAQs section about it.  Getting closer maybe if I ever intend to piece these blocks.

I don't know if the author was trying to replicate the 20's era or not with her block choices.  As I was searching for the block I know that  BlockBase had dated a couple of the blocks to the mid 30's meaning that they would not have been in existence at the time.  The Farmer's Wife letter writing contest was held in 1922  just after World War I and before the depression.  The magazine posed the question  "if you had a daughter of marriageable age, would you, in light of your own experience, want her to marry a farmer?".   Would I want to replicate that quilt exactly----no. I have no desire to make some of these blocks and I know I would be doing some substitutions or maybe not four of the same motif in one block.  The author probably did that with jumping time periods.

The funny thing is, I hate the coloration of what is supposed to be a 20's era quilt on the cover of the book.  I love the IDEA of the quilt sampler like this but the fabrics had no appeal to me--- ugh, muddy browns, grays, dark, dark, dark fabrics. So not "me"! IF I were to actually make this quilt, I would move up another era at least to the 30s which I love.  I see that some of the flickr group and various bloggers are making them in today's modern palette but I would want to use my stash instead and just buy some background yardage.   Some friends are doing the Dear Jane and I have thought about that quilt for years but I do not know of anyone locally, doing the Farmer's Wife sampler.

Enough musing for the day----I didn't get any cleaner or dressed in the intervening hour that I have been surfing or writing this.  I love a good bit about quilting and I love the shared history of it too---and I am having fun.  That other stuff can wait a bit longer.