Aug 30, 2012

finished to flimsy!

Oh come on!  You know I would get this done---and as planned since I just had 3 blocks and two long seams to go, LOL.  I just cannot get a decent picture of it----though the colors of the stuff hanging off the bed from the window angle is what it looks like in person.

This one looks more yellowed than it is---possibly from the overhead lights and the fact that it was 1945.  The width looks good and so does the length finishing at about 88 x 98 or something close to that.

Woohoo!  The strips and fabrics are put away, temporarily anyway.  I had vacuumed the day before to get the worst of the mess up.  Materials gathered to start cutting on FWIS.  Off on another sewing adventure soon!

Jane, Aline and I are heading off to Pell City to drop off our QOV quilts in about an hour.  We may also be going on to Heart to Heart in Trussville from there BUT it will wholly depend on the weather.   Not raining now but some forecasts said the Isaac driven rain bands would hit Thursday through Monday.  It is overcast and who knows what it is doing 2 counties away?  Or will be doing in several hours.   Two of us get a birthday discount but I don't think I "need" anything but would go along with the others if they want to go.  I have begged off a couple times recently---like, going after the guild meeting and I need to get home.  Also Aline watches her great-granddaughter a good bit.  She may be needed at home if Pop has his hands too full of little Lily.

Besides I already ordered my quilt backing from Thousands of Bolts---Free Spirit Habitat on an aqua background.  Either by design or happenstance there are a lot of little (and some big) polka dots in this quilt so this is  perfect, not only colorwise but "theme".  The springboard was the Me and My Sisters "Amelia" so even the backgrounds have dots.  Not enough to call it  "lots and lots of dots and spots" like Pam called her version but they are there.  Once I get it the batting and backing prepped, I'll get on a long armer's list.

There are a few paperwork things I must deal with first but then full steam ahead on cutting the first little sampler blocks anyway.

Aug 29, 2012

meeting notes

I had one of those nights that you sleep 3 hours, awake for about three more and then go back to sleep for another three and then get up about 2 hours late. I am still trying to get caught up! You know I have a top to finish today!

I made breakfast foods for lunch and put on a pot of potatoes to make potato salad to go with the Sloppy Tom's tonight. Speaking of potatoes, a friend sent me a link at one time that showed Dawn Wells AKA Mary Ann on "Gilligan's Island" on behalf of the Idaho Potato Board peeling a boiled potato. She used a trick of scoring the potato first and then you just twist off the peel. I need to look at that again to see if I need the potatoes slightly, completely or not at all cooled. Check it out on Youtube.  Scoring works for tomatoes and peaches so why not?

Okay before I get back to making potato salad finally get my sewing machine fired up, the promised quilt pictures.  Bev has been a busy girl and I know she has Christmas gifts that she should be working on <VBG>.   She is taking to the quilting like a duck to water and getting a lot of practice in.  In fact, one ofthe quilts we pinned was a panel piece that has been in our closet at the church for some time.  Glad to see it getting ready for a young 'un.

First, Bev's watermelon panel.  She thought it might be better suited for a lap robe at the nursing home but I think it is a cheery little quilt.

This is the other one Bev made from the brand new Vera Wang king sized pillow cases she found at a garage sale.  I called it "Vera on Steroids #2" on my document as #1 was turned in a month or so back, LOL.

Next up she had turned in this R/W/B "Lorelei" fabric quilt.  I believe she said she had used up the last of the black zebra fabric.  The back is even pieced.   Note the embellishments on her quilts too, if you can get them bumped up a little bigger.

And lastly, she had this little cute elephant quilt for a smaller child/baby.  She was worried that it might be too small but we thought maybe it would be a perfect one to have on hand for the Red Cross emergency fire/police liaison who happens to be Brenda's husband.

Meanwhile, Marilyn had gotten her Twisted Sister for ovarian cancer pieced and quilted up.  These were some of the blocks she, her friend Heather and I were laying out on my bed last week.

Marilyn had this little sweet quilt as well but it is going to a special little person in her life.

And, Jane had gotten the binding finished up on my Picnic BQ 1.  Story about that down below.

I got the picnic fabric for this from a quilt shop in WA State called Over the Rainbow as part of their Pay It Forward about 2 years ago, maybe?    It was one I quilted up in that quilting binge recently and Jane took off my hands to finish up.  Several of the girls really liked it. I mentioned that I had re-sized the blocks but really you could make the feature squares whatever size you want to squeeze them out of your available yardage.  Like I probably had a yard of this picnic stuff and just cut it up.  You can do them in novelties too or pick any theme you want.  One of the gals that had thought about making a "potato chip" quilt with some sale yardage looked and said she may be re-thinking that plan.  Plus you could used that grayish black tone on tone where I have the red dot.  Just a thought.

Then I said " how about for the fall sew-in block?"   They are good with that.  It is coming up in late October.  I don't think that the pattern from Debbie Bowles of  Maple Island Quilts gives the yardage and such for the sized block I used though.  Maybe, but maybe not since it is a bit smaller.  I'll get a handle on what they need to be digging from the stash or purchase ahead.   Do the research and shoot out the email.

Lois had two quilts to pin----both the same top but with different backing.  Pretty and fall toned.  She could not remember the name or the pattern source but it would be easy to figure out.  The pinwheels form when you join the blocks.

As I mentioned yesterday I did not get much done at the meeting but was okay with that.  Lois, Bev, Jane and Aline pretty much teamed up to pin.  Brenda had some binding to do on one of the donation quilts., Rosa was working on some Sunbonnet Sue's using the Eleanor Burns interfaced method.  That reminds me that I still need to look to see if I have any left that I can give her as she said she couldn't find it on the Quilt in a Day website.  I know I have some Overall Bills left from making a friendship quilt for one of the Belles when she moved away.  I don't know if I have a picture of it to link to or not but spotted it in the photo albums when we were looking through them yesterday.  Marilyn was trimming down some string blocks.

BUT we also were celebrating the summer birthdays.  Bev was getting hungry so we did the smart thing and cut into the lovely cake Marilyn had made.  Again, someone had misplaced her camera!!   Life is too short so eat dessert first, right?   She was joining her husband for lunch out so didn't go to Olive Garden with the rest of us.  We put everything up, packed up and didn't got back to the church from the restaurant.  I got home about the usual time---around 2:30.

And there you have it-----potato salad first and then I am sewing those last three remaining PopStix blocks.  By day's end the quilt top will be finished and you are apt to hear the whoop from your home, wherever that might be, LOL.

Aug 28, 2012

Doesn't take much............. make me happy, LOL.   Remember my saying that my 2 1/2 inch fabric bin was looking a little sparse after a couple of group sew-in's?  I also had raided some of the strips to toss into PopStix.   At one point this thing was so full I could barely keep the lid on it.

Well, Lois reads my blog and came to the meeting today with a pile of 2 1/2 inch strips and said that she hoped she was not too late.   Ahhh even if I was a done with my top, there are lots of other projects that call for 2 1/2 inchers!  Album block is one of them that is in the "has been set aside" category.  Each of the PopStix blocks takes 14 different strips, or it does in my version anyway.  Since I am down to the last 3 blocks at this writing, it seems that the bits that I do have pieced contain all the same pieces.  :-( and then I gotta un-sew more than sew.  SO I pulled out about 16 bits that are NOT in my quilt and when combined and strategically placed, it should be fine.   WOOHOO!

Also there were some really pretty browns, neutrals, tans, etc that would look great as a log cabin block(s) especially when combined with already existing stash fabrics.  I grouped them together when I put them in the bin.   Two other strips may make it into my Farmer's Wife Inspired Sampler that I am getting every more closer to starting.  WOOHOO again!

Oh, Lois also had a whole container of half square triangles, possibly the cutaways from other projects. Bev took those off her hands!   Brenda relieved her of some blue and white bits---little flying geese pieces or star points it looked like.  I told Lois that passing on your stuff to other quilting friends is STILL stash busting since it is not living at your house.  It certainly makes both parties happy, like it did me!

Here is the other thing that makes me smile-----abandoned blocks. Marilyn brought them to me and some of them will combine with the ones I have from mom, her friend Linda H. and my own set aside bits and pieces.    That one has a more pastel, country feel so a few of these will probably have to go to another project.  I think there are a few more dresden plate blocks at her mom's that I just need to pick up that Marilyn said were lighter in color.  (One of those butterflies needs a body!).  I found two more blocks that I had stuck in my embroidery bag---another butterfly and one called "Bed of Roses".  I'm tired so I do not want to take throw them all back down on the floor to take another picture.  Maybe when I post a quilt finish, or the donation quilts but not now-------

I'll write more about today's meeting later.  After all, I have donation quilts pictures to show you.  I don't know why but I could not keep track my camera at all today, LOL.   Somehow in spite of my being a bit scattered I managed to take them.    I didn't get a lick of embroidery done today but that's okay.

I was looking for something on the library cart and found some patterns that needed to be put in the notebooks.   This cute owl quilt was one of the loose patterns, hiding in the stacks of books.   Owls are so "in" these days!  BUT guess what----pattern is from 1985 and get this, cost 2.50 from wherever the person who donated it found it.   Nothing is every truly ever "new".   I would want to make it not square if I try it.  (Kids aren't square after all!).  It turned out the thing I was looking for was out with one of the other gals---which is fine!  I was going to try that "Fun and Done" deal that Bev needed help with but it can wait.

I've just been following up on things from the meeting since I got home.  It was a rainy day due to the effects of Isaac but no wind problems or tornado watches or warnings. Thankfully!  Of course, I hope whatever he does down in southern AL, MS and LA especially is minimal.  7 yrs since the disaster that was Katrina ---a hard thing to recover from.

Well provided we don't lose power tomorrow,  I believe I will get that quilt top done!  That's my goal anyway.  Later--------

Like Minds??

I had popped over to see what was going on at a Left Handed Quilters blog,  This is Design Wall Monday for a group of bloggers so I figured Kitty had posted.  Cool!  She was talking about using the "Big & Bold" quilt pattern from Cozy Quilt Designs, apparently a fat quarter friendly pattern.  I own that!  It is filed away in one of my notebooks.

She also mentioned "Twilight Frost".  I have a pile of that for use in that very same pattern!  I have to move the bag of it every time I need to get at the Singer sewing accessories or the yellow and orange 20 qt containers of fabric.  See it there right on top?   Ignore the mess---I am still sewing, after all, so the iron is still plugged in and the floor is covered with strings and fabric bits again. 

It is possible, but I do not entirely recall, that Connecting Threads had the "Twilight Frost" featured as a kit on their website using the "Big & Bold" pattern.  I had originally purchased it way back in the fall of 2009 and then added to it.  I planned to use the yardage in some manner for the FABS "Baby, Its Cold Outside" fabric challenge with the giftie going to Cher that round.  I waffled, boy did I waffle,changing my mind about 4 or 5 times and then ended up making  a Convergence quilt.   The challenge piece of fabric was that light periwinkle-y tone on tone paisley so it all worked out well.  I had also found some other yardage that blended with it.  You can read all about it in this post

Once this was done, I put the leftovers in a 2 gal ziploc bag.  I had enough of it to consider making that Big and Bold quilt, in some size or another.  I had apparently ordered some fat 8ths and charms but once I had it drawn up in EQ must have decided to make a far larger quilt.  The blocks needed to be re-sized to be able to use the fat 8ths and charm pieces.  I have a fat quarter kit and some selected yardage as well----they marked it down as I recall.   I know I specifically bought more of the darkest piece "Expresso" for the section separators and the borders, possibly binding too.   See the sketch below.

 Here is the EQ sketch and yep, I was headed for a 89 square quilt with this stuff.   I was just being lazy and did not color it in at the time.   And I need to bookmark her page, LOL for inspiration to do my own version.   You really need to go take a look at Kitty's version (s) as she did one up in "B/W/R - FLORAL MULTI" as well as the Twilight Frost version that went to her grandson, she said.  The names will take you to the quilts.

I have set this to post on Tuesday morning when I am at Belles, or at least I hope I am!  Isaac may have something to say about that idea. 

Aug 27, 2012

Getting closer!

................and that is a statement that could be taken TWO ways.  My PopStix quilt top  is one row away from completion and Isaac is getting closer as well.

On the quilt front I had left off last night 2 blocks into row 5.  There are 5 blocks in all that mess of color plus that extra width of 3 rail sections, about where Skyler is laying.  I could join these two to the top half but why?  It is getting too big and heavy with my current machine table set up,  I'll wait till the final row is completed and then turn around like I do when I am quilting with a forward table.

I started sewing about 0730 and here it is noon!  I am in my nightgown still and kept thinking I'll get in the shower once I get one more block and/or section done.  Well, that did NOT happen obviously.  DJ started a load of wash---I am not competing with the washing machine for shower water.  The air was not on yet and that is always a consideration especially if I plan on drying my hair.    Who in their right mind wants to aim a hot blow dryer at their face or head when it is sticky 82 degrees in the house?   I kept pushing on, LOL.  Now it is time for lunch and I'll get the hygiene stuff dealt with once we eat.

As far as the approaching storm goes,  they are projecting that it maybe further west towards MS and LA.  That will mean  rain and possible tornadic activity for us in NE Central AL possibly. Hide and watch, I guess.  See what the weather is like tomorrow morning when I get up to decide if Belles is on or not.  We had planned to go out to Olive Garden for the summer birthdays.  I had promised to  pick one of the gals up on the way and help her out with some of that heat press batting stuff.  Bev has quilts to turn in too.  After all this machine sewing I think it might be an embroidery type day for me---take that day off.  My goal now is to get this top done by Wednesday.

Aug 25, 2012

Saturday check in

Been piddling with the PopStix top still---maybe by next Saturday I can report a finish to flimsy.  That is my goal anyway based on availability and the weather.  The weather dude is keeping a watchful eye on Isaac as it moves into the Gulf as some models have it headed right into Alabama.  Who knows if the power will even be on in a couple of days?

I only got 3 blocks made today but joined row 3 to rows 1 and 2.  Since there are 6 rows, I am officially half done plus two blocks.  17 blocks out of the 30 I need plus the expansion sections.   Probably too much information?  Just as long as I can keep track of what I am doing, I guess.  BTW the picture shows the width of the quilt, not the length.

I really did make my bed this morning but it is so much easier to look at these blocks if I get down the plain colored sheets, LOL.  I had to apologize for that stripped off look yesterday too.

Yesterday my friend Marilyn came by with a friend of hers to have me help her get some blocks laid out for some quilts she is making for ovarian cancer.  She had a two stacks of teal and white Twisted Sister blocks.  One she planned on sashing but had been struggling with the layout.  Since she had 4 blocks of 5 different prints I suggested perhaps laying them out across the top diagonally.  The other pile I suggested possibly putting them block to block as it sure makes it easier to quilt them in the ditch.  She also has a larger quilt in the works which I showed you  HERE.

But I digress---I do that a lot.  I have come to the conclusion that one should NOT make 15 pairs of the 5 strip sections of the blocks ahead of time.  I keep taking apart the blocks to use for the 3 strips or to substitute a color so I can keep them scattered.  The colors may be close tone but I don't want them being the same fabric.  Also I have been folding up the row(s) to isolate just a couple of blocks at a time so I can see what fabrics had been used.  There is so much going on with these things!  I don't mind if the same fabric is in a section on the block ahead if there is some separation or it is placed horizontally versus vertically.  OR I will use a different fabric that is near to the same color---that's okay.  I really cannot get a decent picture of this either.

Before I do any more piecing tomorrow I am going to straighten out this strip container.  I am loosing track of what is still in there from the jelly roll.

I have cut a few more strips to add to the mix.  I have already raided my meager 2 1/2 inch strip bin that has been through two quilt group sew-in's and up for grabs looking for little bits for the little triple rail sections.  Also I may need to cut some lights of something or toss in another green shade----some of my "birthday" fabrics would work.   Some are already in it, LOL.   I guess one good thing from my 2 1/2 inch strip bin being so low is that the leftovers from this project will have room, right?  None of it goes to waste.

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

Aug 23, 2012

hot off the press

Cropped a bit but just finished up after stitching parts of two days. Fun!

Pattern Source:  Aunt Martha's Transfers from the Bonnie Bonnet 3920 packet.  I re-sized it to fit the block size requested by the group quilt organizers.  Because I liked the look of the brown pigma pen I used to draw it off from the printout I made from the re-sized image.  (where is that red pigma pen anyway?) I just went with DMC 632 for stitching.

Now I am off to the kitchen to make some meatballs for tonight's supper. I guess I am being creative in a far different way then?  I promised DJ I would make spaghetti sometime this week. 

Tomorrow I'll be back to stitching on my PopStix top and probably laundry in between strip sets. 

Aug 22, 2012

a shopping we will go!

When I left off in my last post, Jane was coming by to pick me up and we were headed to get Marilyn for a run up to Boaz and fabric shopping, lunch out.  We stopped at Mill Street Deli for lunch and then went over to Wilson's.

Marilyn is making the quilts for ovarian cancer and she was on the hunt for teals and such.  Jane needed some yardage for a secret pal and found some other pieces she liked---some that I had picked out first actually.  Similar tastes, it would appear.  I'll show you that stuff in a minute.  

The 2nd piece in the stack above is some yardage I picked up at Hobby Lobby in Gadsden before we came home.  I had gotten the Andover Girl Friday lime green piece and the Quilting Treasure Contempo dots with my birthday money from DJ and  The gray Jinny Beyer has been in my stash since the late 80's/early 90's.   Somewhere around here I have some solid gray and that is really what I had thought about tossing in the pile to audition.  I did look but it was not in the most likely areas from my best recall.  That's why the Jinny Beyer gray was tossed into the pile.  I don't know where the white came from but the darkest piece is the challenge fabric.  See this post for it actually looks like unfolded.  Looks like it just might work together.

 I THINK I may make my Belles challenge quilt with this stuff----but already I am wondering if I would be able to give it up once the top is finished.   Would it be totally selfish of me to want to use the leftover piece of challenge fabric for a quilt for myself??  I have two sections of  that challenge yardage and can donate the other one.  I think I may be one fabric short here---another green needed perhaps??  I keep coming back to Burns' Quick Trip Quilts when I see this yardage.  Not sure why other than subconsciously I want to try it??  I have a yard of each of these.  It calls for 6-1/4 yard fabrics for a crib  42 x 52 (with borders) and 9-1/2 yard pieces fabrics for a lap (54 x 77) and 12- 1/2 yards for a twin (65 X 102) with borders.  Can't you repeat a color or two??   HMMMMMM  Better think on this a bit longer but I am putting this stack aside for now.  Besides, I had planned on doing the Mock Trip Around the World  pattern for the challenge in the first place.

The Belles were so kind to give me some birthday spending money and this is how I spent most of it.  I did order a Twister ruler (the bigger one) and also a Perfect Piecing Seam Guide as well but the latter has not arrived yet.   Still, the girls are going to want to see how I spent their gracious gift.  Because it was Tuesday, seniors (55 and up) got a 10 % discount on the regular priced items.  That offsets the tax so more bang for the buck.

At the top left. "Perk Me Up" for Wendy Bentley for Timeless Treasures.  The colors should go nice in my FWIS--soft color, aqua and pink dots, etc.  The vintage, feed sack appearing piece is actually Ella's Wishes by Jenni Calo for Connecting Threads.  That green piece is in the 2nd row is also from Connecting Threads as it happens, Merry Minis but I don't think it screams Christmas and actually looks more 30s to me.  (There was no indication on the bolt as to origin as they often wrap their own on old cores.) The soft yellow for background of some of the sampler blocks is Home Grown by Granola Girl.  The two dot fabrics, pink with orange dot and white with aqua dot---Riley Blake.  The piece on the end, unknown origin but I like it--reminds me of sun flowers.

2nd row the green/blue piece is a Moda  (I think) something Geisha maybe.  The orange piece --Wiggles and Giggles from Thimbleberries.    The blackish, floral piece was in the Aunt Grace section.  I have a good bit of 30's fabrics but few blacks.  I believe it will show up in  my sampler with a nice red and maybe that piece that I think looks like Sunflowers---perhaps one of the blocks that calls for 4 different fabrics.

I'll pack this all up to show the girls in person next week.   Again, thank you so much, my dear friends!

Aug 21, 2012

a little forward motion

Well, I got a little bit of PopStix done on after my Saturday post----one complete row to be exact.  I still can't get it on the bed enough to get a good picture of it, LOL but it certainly will be long and wide enough for my needs!   Shown at left---the first half.  The 2nd half is below.

Really I probably should have just started diligently piecing 3 strips by whatever lengths.  I need enough of them, after all!  I had mentioned that I had enough to completely do two blocks so that is where I started.  Then I made a couple 3 strips by shorter lengths so I could complete the row by the time I

closed up shop.  I may continue on with this method though since so many of the colors repeat themselves and I was hoping to avoid having some colors in such close contact.  It may not matter one whit though in the scheme of things.  Guess I just like seeing rows, counting off rows rather than how many more of this size and loosing count all the time.  Most were done in pairs anyway since I was using fat quarters along with half a jelly roll strip---not entirely random.

Sunday found me with several none sewing "to-do's" on the list---like type up the minutes from guild, get groceries, cook two meals, etc, etc.  I managed to read the entire paper, played with Skyler, watched TV, chatted with some pals.  Other stuff---I'm allowed.

Yesterday morning started off with a search for a Sunbonnet Sue blocks.  (Local project---shhhh)   I was sure I had some loaded in my quilt files and pdfs.  Before you know it I am re-organizing sections of my files, backing up the changes, surfing for Sues online.  Read between the lines and you will see that I was adding MORE files and new folders to the thumb drive.

Since my block is supposed to represent "me" in some way---redwork?  foundation piece?  Applique?

I found this one the other day when I was looking for that F & P issue with the Album Cross article in it.  I found it in, get this, in a booklet called Modern Quilting circa the 70's and published by Leman Publishing of Quilters Newsletter Magazine and Quiltmaker fame.   My opinions on modern quilting are a rant for another day but someone is mistaken about so called modern and I think it is the "new bunch".   Jinny Beyer designed a Sue who looks like she has been dieting, LOL plus I never water or do outside work.  If it is ME, then it would have to be a chubby one.  Cute block though---and different.  I scanned it so I could re-size it to fit the parameters, just in case.  The resized one is printed off and tacked to the bulletin board for now.

Surfing led me to some cute embroidered sue pillow cases found  HERE on a blog called Lace 'n' Ribbon Roses.  Ohhhh, I like the kitty ones!!  Go figure.  I really like the one with her embroidering and the cat nibbling on the thread.  That is SO my house.  No pattern source listed though.  What to do?

Flash to this morning-----I have a whole notebook with redwork projects in it and also some Aunt Martha transfers. I have just 3 packets but I remembered that two of them were Sunbonnets. (the other is cats, LOL)  SCORE!!   I know the source and I own it-- Bonnie Bonnet 3920.  I scanned it as I don't want to attempt doing the transfer and also to re-size it in Irfanview for the space I am allowed.  (Sue embroidering)  I thought Jane might like the other one I printed off if she doesn't already have something planned for her contribution, that is.  I couldn't decide between the two at first.

Jane dropped her QOV off yesterday afternoon and I got the binding on for her to hand finish, as she requested.   That was the extent of sewing yesterday as I swapped out machines again.  She'll be back by to pick me up in about an hour.  Then we'll run by Marilyn's to get her and run up to Wilson's in Boaz.  (fabric discount place locally owned but the one in Boaz has better selection than the one in Oxford depending on what you are looking for)  Translation:  girls day out.  LOL, DJ had asked me on Sunday if I had any plans this week. At that point it was only "get my hair cut" and he was stuck with me all week.  That changed, obviously.

And sew it goes---though today's sewing may well be by hand.  Better get myself dressed or Jane will catch me in my jammies and not ready to go.

Aug 18, 2012

where did I leave off??

Way back in February of this year I started a Popsicle Sticks quilt with my FAB pals. It was Norma's choice of a pattern for us to help her celebrate her delayed bday party. I was fine with the choice as I love Terry Atkinson's Patterns.  Always tested thoroughly, the pressing directions make sense and so forth.  You know she was not just throwing a pattern out there without having thought it all out or making you rely totally on your own past sewing experiences to help you over any hurdle.  I don't necessarily need to be spoon fed but I appreciate when someone has made an effort and has eliminated any pitfalls before the pattern is released for mass consumption.

I had to set it aside----for one thing, QOVs intervened.   It is a guild project, I am an officer and I needed to do my part.  To be honest I made some more Button Ups or finished up some other small projects I had started.   Piles of quilting came along in June and July.  Well, if you follow my blog you know I have quilty things to do.  There are just not enough hours in the day to do it all.

So I am finally ready to get back to it---about 6 months later.  Where did I leave off with this?  How many blocks, if any, are done?  More likely how many sections are done and how many more do I need?  Found my road map.   Terry said for a twin/full I needed 5 x 6 blocks---16 inch finished blocks.  Well, the quilt is far too busy and I do not want to border it to make it a tad wider.   I had decided to add one more row of "half" blocks" to add another 6 inches to the width.  Generally the quilts that fit my bed best are about 86 to 88 wide with that pillow top mattress.

I still have plenty of fabric including a few more fat quarters and leftover yardage I stuck in the box.  For variety I will probably cut them a few strips from them too.

So I started spreading them out on the bed---and should have gone from the other edge if I hoped to get 5 across, LOL.   Turns out I have all the 5 strip sections done---15 pairs using the same fabrics.  I have only 20 of the 66 3 strips x the longest length I will need.   I also need 28 more 3 strips x shortest length done.   Actually the only reason I even have those two done was due to a mis-cut early on.  Where you see "holes" at the top  and elsewhere is where the smaller triple rail sections go. I COULD have two completed blocks if the sections were joined, in other words.

I think it will be a pretty quilt when completed.  It has all my favorite colors in it, after all.  Some of the fabrics will translate nicely into my Farmer's Wife Inspired Sampler (FWIS)  which is part of the reason why I want to move this forward---before I am too tempted to raid fabrics from this for that project.

And sew it goes------easy sewing really.  Just need to get to it.

Aug 17, 2012


The sum total of my creative output the last two days, other than tweaking my Farmer's Wife inspired sampler::

Album Cross block from re-purposed fabric that might go in the said sampler.  My re-scaling plan from a 8 inch finished to 6 inch finished  block using Fons and Porter's mag article worked.

Other than that----ugh, binding and more binding but I got it done about 4 this afternoon.  The 60 x 90 size was making it very hard for Quilt Holder to hold it up for pictures.   Glad that job is finished.

Out comes the sewing machine again and tomorrow I'll try to figure out where I was on the Popsicle Sticks top and get back to making more blocks for a queen sized top.

Aug 16, 2012

works in progress---post 2

As it is in a lot of quilt groups (I hope so anyway!) there is a lot of sharing and "consultation" going on.   The Belles and I don't ever seem to be able to pull off an organized show and tell, LOL.  People arrive when they can and leave when they must.   We scatter out all over the Fellowship Hall---some pinning, some sewing, some binding, some looking at books and magazines from our library cart.  We spread things out on the tables or holler when we have something to hold up.  Fairly informal.   Opinions are solicited or kept to ourselves.

These are a few of the projects seen at the Tuesday meeting-----

That gray-y black tone on tone used in this top is the challenge fabric this year.  Bev donated it and we had like 20 yards of it to do something with.   It might have been easier to work with it were 1)  not a bit directional in the striations and  2) if it were truly black.  I guess that is where the challenge comes in!  As far as I know, Beverly is the first one to get a top made with  the challenge yardage.

She said at first she was not so crazy about the quilt.  It has an Amish quilt feel to it, doesn't it?   By the time she finished it was growing on her.  Her husband Jack was helping her decided what fabrics to include--- if he groaned that meant a veto of the choice but he okay'd others, from what Beverly reported.  I think this "works" as she stayed with the grayed, dusty tones  in the blues, pinks, greens and then added just enough brights to make it pop.   We dug around in the closet for some backing but will pin it down the line.   After all, we only have to have a top done by December  (if we can---that is loose too, LOL)

Next up we have Marilyn's Wonky Stars that she is making as an ovarian cancer fund raiser.  We were consulting about whether she should include some of the non-teal blocks or the ones that were not screaming teal but had teal in the prints.  I was always told to look at what a block looks to be from 10 feet away (or the camera lens, door peephole) and then decide.  It may look tan or gray from the distance and you have to decide if it fits or not.

We were also wondering what size to cut the sashing----looks like the churches' vinyl table cloth looks pretty good with the blocks floating on it.   She is considering doing little wonky stars in the sashing.  I had some EQ sketches that had been done that way and some friendship stars that have the same sizes of block stitched in to show her though I have also done the teeny ones in the sashing as well.  We had talked on the phone about it the day before so that was why I knew to throw the project box in the car. It can be done scrappy but you have to be watchful and a design wall helps immensely.  Well, HERE is a post about that   I don't think that the actual project progressed much past the picture show in THIS post, LOL.  Another one to re-visit circa 2006.

The next picture shows Brenda's recently completed Grandmother's Flower Garden top.  I love the applique she has done in the corners!  She is considering adding a few buds to it.   Other than admiring it we were discussing how she might hand quilt it.  The blocks are hand done so she wants to hand quilt it but not every stinkin' hexie!!

We talked about how you often see them quilted a quarter inch in from the seam lines but each and every hexagon.  Could you just do it a quarter inch away from the centers and do the same thing on the outside or inside of the rosette??  Try it and see if it will pop and recede in a pleasing manner to you, maybe on a small project first.   I believe she is planning on cross hatching in the outer border since there is a fair amount of space to be filled there.   Wouldn't double lines look cool--even with the initial grid about 2.5 or 3 inches apart??  That just came to me.   Not my quilt so I can come up with more work ideas, LOL.

The next three are some of the shots I took of Bev's Block of the Month Crazy Patches.  (Just a few selected months are shown here though she has all 12 of them done.)  Bev is so inventive and seems to enjoy improvisational work with fun embellishments so this is right up her alley, I would say.   I think you will see themes each block represents.

Here we have Pat F and Betsy pinning Pat's fall toned quilt.  The girls set up two tables since Bev was pinning some of her Christmas gift quilts and the usual one was tied up for quite a bit.   Table two is normally covered with the Bunn-o matic and the coffee supplies.  Actually this worked better for Pat as the table is longer than the one we normally use.  The quilt would need to be shifted up and down as well as side to side.

And this was another point of discussion.  How to make an Album Cross block.  Brenda and I were talking about it at the last meeting in relation to a quilt she was considering.  The background information is found on that post.  Crossed Canoes versus Album Cross---less pieces but still effective.

The Fons and Porter method I had in mind was in their magazine September/October 1998 when it was still called "Sew Many Quilts"   I found the magazine the other day while looking for something else FOR someone else, LOL.    My mind leapt to the abandoned blocks from my mom that I had taken apart to re-purpose the fabric.  I cut out 6 blocks that would finish 8 inches as the magazine shows---some used the re-purposed fabric and others, some of the over-cuts from that Prairie Stroll top I was working on.

Even though the block was not pieced yet, I showed the girls how Liz avoided making a template as you use an overlay at the half way mark of your finished blocks and just trim the extra fabric away using your 8 1/2 inch square ruler.  I had some vinyl to attach to the ruler top that I had picked up years ago at a quilt show from Master Piece Products called Static Sticker.  There are 1/4 inch grid lines marked on the back of the vinyl make it easy to trim to size. You can see the seam lines and it comes right off when you no longer need it.

That brings up to today's creative plans-----
In my haste Tuesday morning I mis-cut the 2 1/2 inch strips I had intended to use with the re-claimed fabric.  I decided to see if I can make a six inch finished Album Cross block instead of the 8 inch finished shown in the magazine.  I'll  use the same principles but  will be looking for the 3 1/4 inch mark to orient my little square---you have to angle the square with one tip on the  middle of the block horizontally and vertically.  6 inch finished---this might go in my Farmer's Wife Sampler.  There is a similar block listed that she called Seasons but more chunky looking.  2 inch strips would work and I have an easy way to piece it.  Because I may be using white sashing on that project I think I am going to put these cut QST back in the abandoned block project bag and cut a soft green background instead---I just decided that.    Whip that block right up today!

Also on today's plans----start on the QOV binding.  I think I'll put up the machine after I whip up that little block and spread out for a day or two--- or knowing me, three.  Gotta be done as a deadline awaits.  Jane, Aline, me and I think Bev all have quilts that will need to be delivered for the Veteran's Home and we are shooting for the Aug. 30th small group day.

I did get the Prairie Stroll top colored flap and borders on yesterday.  Backing has been found for it and it is now with the 4 other pro bono tops in my bedroom closet.   Still not ready to pin those, nor could I this week with the tables in continuous use even if I wanted to---which I didn't.  I already told you 3 of them need marking and batting pieced meaning more work, LOL.

Okay, posting is done, the laundry is done, almost time for lunch----and that is how a morning can slip away from you!

finished donation quilts---post 1

I promised you pictures of quilts and here they are! I will do a separate post with some of the other things the girls were working on as I don't know how many blogger will let me load at a time. Those are fun and interesting things that deserve their own space anyway, in my opinion. Since this is MY blog, I can post it how I want, LOL.    These were the quilts piled up on my pressing/cutting table shown in the last post.

Turning 20 pieced and bound by Aline who is shown holding it.  I thought she was going to duck behind it but she was talking to me during the photo op, LOL.  One that I quilted in the 2 week quilting binge.

Pineapple Blossom made with blocks from one of our 2011 sew-in days.  Truly a group effort as we pooled the blocks to make two quilts.  Lois assembled one and possibly more.  I assembled and quilted this one.  Jane did the binding finish.

All I can say on this one is that is finally the last of the green habitat challenge fabric---or it is the last for me anyway after 5 quilts worth!   This Patience Corner was pieced and quilted by me,  Jane the binding finish.

This is Judy's Oriental Sashed 4 patch--pieced and quilted by Judy.  I put the binding on at her request and Brenda did the hand finishing on it.

Scrappy Challenge Positive-Negative Puss in the Corner.  Pieced, quilted and binding applied by me.  This was one that was half quilted in June and then finished up in the July quilting binge.  Brenda hand finished the binding for me.

Brenda's Many Trips Around the World.   Her project start to finish though some of the fabrics are from one of the sew-ins when she started the blocks.

This is Judy's Gypsy--pieced and quilted by Judy.  I put the binding on at her request and Brenda did the hand finishing on it.

Please check out the other things the girls are working on---post two

Aug 14, 2012

some progress/birthday celebration continues

I have gotten a bit of sewing done---blocks joined on Sunday. Rows joined on Monday while I watched the last episode of "The Closer" I will be sorry to see the show go but Major Crimes should fill in nicely since most of my cast favorites are cast in it.   FYI:  I did make my bed this morning but I un-made it and threw the pillows on the floor to take this picture on a solid background.   The yellow background on the bow tie quilt was obscuring the view, LOL.

I cut the lilac/lavender paisley piece for a small flap of color---that is preferable to actually sewing a narrow, narrow strip to me. Yes I still need to baste it down but my theory is that I don't have to be near as worried about 1/4 on TWO sides with a flap vs 1 inch or smaller finished border. The separator flap and the binding are seamed but not pressed. It still needs a border put on and apparently I did NOT cut one yet.  That is a tomorrow job.

First I need to put all this away from today's quilting meeting.   Jane, Aline and Brenda have all finished binding up since we last met.  The gold colored one on tops is my QOV.  I was the last one out the door but I was bound and determined to get the job done before I left.  I still need to get the label on it and then I'll be back to binding for a day or two.   Jane asked me if I would put the binding on her QOV as well.  After all the hand finishing she does for ME on the donation quilts, I am happy to help her with that part of the deal.  Drop it by and I'll take care of it.

The girls surprised me with a birthday potluck today.  Marilyn baked one of her yummy chocolate cakes and decorated it so prettily.  (I should have taken a picture of it before I cut into it.)  Teresa tucked a teal fat quarters by my machine when I was not looking----she knows it is one of my favorite colors.  It will either go in the Popsicle Sticks top or Farmer's Wife Sampler----or BOTH.  Some lovely cards with some quilt-y spending money were also included along with that good meal.  I had made some Rice Krispie treats to share but sure didn't know the girls were up to something.  Thanks to you all!

I have pictures of finished quilts (that stack unfolded, LOL) and some of the tops that were pinned today.  I'll post those later in the week since I personally won't have much to show.  After all, the Prairie Stroll won't look appreciably different with a border nor will the QOV when the binding is done.  By the weekend I hope to be working on Pop Stix or that is my goal anyway.


While I was gone, DJ had hired our neighbor guy to help with the shed doors which he had discovered was rotting out.  DJ had gone over to see Robert knew of anyone that does small job carpentry work as he did not think he was up to the job especially if the doors had to be totally replaced.   Our neighbor does concrete finishing but work has been slow with the economy and housing situation being what it is.  Robert has a done a lot of remodeling and such on the old farmhouse they live in.  They came to an agreement and between the two of them had the lumber on hand to do the job,  They were able to do some repair work on it yesterday but there was a problem with the hinges that needed to be addressed.   We had a good bit of rain right after that  (and more again this morning) so they had to wait out the weather.  Robert and then his son Nick were over for about 2 hours this morning working on it.  I guess Robert said, I could have made a whole new door in the time it took to just fix this one.  He is probably right!   DJ still needs to caulk, prime and paint but he had not requested the neighbor to do that part of the job.  Always something when you own a home, isn't it?