Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Long time coming

 I have had this back from my quilter for a few weeks.   Today I finally cut off the extra fabric and batting around the sides. 

This is how it looked prior to going to the long-armer:  It is a large quilt.  I don't remember the dimensions. But to give you an idea, each heart is 6 inches on point making it 85 inches long. 

I reallly LOVE, LOVE, LOVE  how she quilted it.  Oh, my GOSH.  I did ask for custom quilting versus an edge to edge design and wanted to accentuate the piecing I did.   

The back, boring, is  stippling down the stripped rows of 30s fabrics and the heart designs with cross hatching are amazing.  It is a light turquoise/ green color. I had purchased 9 yards for it. I have since become used to being extra wide backing fabric which is cheaper at 15 dollars a yard versus 9 yards of something. 


Different views.  It is tooo cold to take it outside.


A close up of the beautiful scrolls, cross hatch and hearts between the pieced log cabin hearts.


This quilt was started with the intention of giving it to my mother, born in 1931. While she now lives in a nursing home and no longer needs it,  it is a memory made by me and I thought of her through the whole process.   Ode to MOM!  Lots and lots of "Hearts" to you!



Sunday, October 24, 2021

Louisiana visit

I worked like crazy to get this quilt ready to go on our trip to Louisiana. My daughter in law had selected the pattern and fabrics over 5 years ago when she lived with us in Wisconsin. She had even cut it out, but I hadn't taught her how to sew on a machine yet.

So I put it together, had it quilted by my long -armer and then attached my first machine binding.  For this purpose, it was the quickest and easiest way to get the binding on quickly,  nd it worked fairly well for my first attempt. 


I have included other views:   It finished as 66 by 77 or so. And the pattern was very easy to make. I enjoyed working with the batiks and felt the fabric was easy to sew for accuracy.


The colors are bright, which she LOVED!
The back is a wide blue minky which she also LOVED. The quilt motif is a geometric zig zag which I felt went perfect with it.  


And I mean she really loved it and immediately took it to put on her bed. 
It is not queen size, but she did not want to share with all the boys. 
I think I will have to get her a solid duvet or coverlet. 
Happy early birthday! ( November 2)


As a part of our visit, I had asked that my son take my HB to the Army base where he was stationed as a combat medic for 6 years in the 10th Mountain unit and now works as security as a civilian. 
He took us all to see it.   One huge piece of land where there has been lots of newer construction in the past 10 years.  The base was an old World War 2 built facility.
We enjoyed their mini golf range on a warm (80 degree) day as well as the go carts. 
The boys got their Halloween costumes and Iron Man wanted to wear his gloves all the time even though his hands become sweaty.
We took the kids enjoyed walking down by the river in Natchitoches, which is  their nearest shopping town to where they live.  We had fun at their library and park, something which the boys always enjoy. 


I so had the time of my life reading books, playing games and spending quality time with them in my lap. It was their fall break, although they had been off school for a week and a half as the little one had Covid.  They kept begging me to stay longer. 


But we are making Christmas and spring break plans to solve that. 

 

Wednesday, October 13, 2021

Retreat

 This past weekend we had a Quilt Chicks retreat in Madison, Wisconsin. The weather was dreary, but maybe that was a good thing so we could get more sewing done.   It is always a blast to have a bunch of quilters in the same room.  So many ideas floating around and lots of creative ideas to help get the juices flowing.  


Here are two of the projects I was able to put together:

The first one is a retro panel from a fabric line called Kitty Corn.   I thought it was so cute, but loved the more muted colors.  I had fun with the borders and even had some inspiration from my fellow quilters.


The second was a table runner using a charm pack.   I thought it was a little bright when a put it together for my dining room table, so I added lattice to calm it down a little. The pattern was a mini yellow brick road by Terry Atkinson. 



Both of these need quilting. But this week I have 3 meetings in the evenings and 2 sew dates for the guild.  Busy, busy.

I have another lap quilt made from batiks, but I forgot to get a photo once it was together and now it is at the long-armer to  take to my daughter in law this week. 

My dear spouse and I are looking forward to seeing my son and family, ( mostly the boys, right) this week.  Covid is going around.  In fact our little guy the 5 year old came down with it early last week. We hope that is the end of it.  So far no new cases in the family. Fortunately, the parents have all 3 vaccines. This will be me in a week. 



Tuesday, October 5, 2021

Hand work

 GOOD NEWS!  I revisited my heart doctor, the one who prescribed the month long wearable heart monitor. And the conclusion was that he saw no evidence of the atrial fib which had been identified some 5 years ago. I am so happy!  No blood thinners for me.  Plus I was able to keep my weight down a little.  This was a tricky one as I had gained a few pounds on retreat a couple of weeks ago. What a relief! 

So onto quilting: I have been doing lots of hand work in the evenings in front of the TV. 

I have steadily been working on this wool project. It was purchased from Primitive Gatherings a few years ago. Granted, it will not be summer when it is finished, but it will be great for NEXT year. 

The Valdani green pearl cotton is actually a little variegated. It was easy to assemble. I purchased a kit with the shapes pre-fused and mostly punched out. Such a life saver for all this little red flowers. The pattern is still available; I don't know about the wool kit. 


This is a photo of the whole project before I started the leaves. The words at the bottom will be last.  I haven't decided whether to do the half square triangles around the borders.



The other project for now is a cross stitch.  I do not know what kind of fabric this is, but I love the beige with the flecks.   I am using variegated floss for this project.  The pattern has 3 different leaves each in a different colorway. 


I just made my own diagram to see the count better. 


Here are all the flosses I purchcased.  I think the red is too dark.  But it is still fun to stitch it. 



I leave for retreat in 2 days.  I will have lots to show afterwards. 










Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Time flies when you are having fun!

 It has been a busy month.  And I have accomplished some good things. Although I have not blogged in a very long time.  

There have been 2 trips for the month, 3 quilt store visits, and so much more.   I am beginning to get much more busy with activities; a book group, facilitating at a grief support group for kids, and tutoring. 

So in no particular order, here are the projects that have been worked on: 

A block of the month for guild



Bindings and bindings.  One is my Christmas quilt that came back from the long armers. That was a large bed quilt. 

The quilt retreat was a small group of 8 and I enjoyed getting away. It was a wonderful house in middle Wisconsin. I didn't feel like I accomplished much.  But in hind sight, I have a project stashed away to finish that took quilt a bit of time.


These are projects that others completed:  another Quiltagous Esher Christmas tree: Quilt kits listed here.It is much brighter in person as these are Kaffe Fasset fabrics and oh, so pretty.



A kit that was found in our guild's bargain bin sale this summer


A beautiful sunset out our sewing window.   We had rain and sun and such a relaxing pretty view.
And I gained a little weight from the good food that we each made. 


A quilt designed by one of the girls to donate to 4 H.



I worked on my round RSC log cabin blocks for September. 


I had started this last Christmas and then put it away.  But the top was assembled on retreat.  It is a lovely group of flannels by Bonnie Sullivan.  I followed the center of the wall quilt, but changed the pieced borders.


I have since quilted and bound it.  The quilting was just free motion outlines of the shapes except the snowflakes.  Here is the back of it with a different flannel.


And lastly I have done about half of the wool applique to this Primitive Gatherings wall hanging. 




Wednesday, September 1, 2021

September morn

 The month made me think of Neil Diamond's song  as I write this contemplating my title.

The first of September and the first day of schools in Wisconsin...It is the second year not to be  teaching. I have mixed feelings still. So much of who I am is about working with kids. And I made many connections to many many students over the years.  I still worry about a few of mine as they are finishing up their high school years. I am even in connection with some graduates and celebrate their recent acceptances to grad school or house purchases, etc. 

I always wanted to be a teacher and I cared so much for the students to be the best they could be.  Not everyone is cut out for college or even needs it to be successful. And some students really struggle in finding themselves amid family issues and mental health issues and trying to fit in. But I wanted them to learn about deadlines and accomplishments and following directions.  I don't think education is all about content so much. I mean who really uses algebra 2 in life!  I think it is more about skills applicable to life: working with all kinds of people whether peers or teachers/bosses, acquiescing to environments for the benefit of all, and so much more. And it is learning to use resources: books, online and PEOPLE!

I will tutor this year.  But I am not at all ready to enter schools amid Covid. I would love to assist classrooms or substitute, but I worry so about the spread of the virus. It is a hot bed of frustration for oh, so many. 

Here's to a good year for all!  

On a quilting note, I have made a second color combination of the Lucy pattern by GE designs. The pattern is striking in its design and has so many potential layouts and colorways to make. I made this for our committee to make the raffle quilt for the quilt show as a sample. The members are truly inspiring quilters to me. 

The colors are teal/aqua and a gray swirl which looks more tan in the picture next to my carpet. 


Although I am no professional quilter or prize winner, I consider myself to be a good quilter with over 35 years of experience.  This pattern tripped my switches.  The bias edges did not seem a problem when sewing them, but were a problem when trimming them. 
These are the cut offs and some of those strips are indeed a half inch. 


Here are a couple blocks before trimming.  Love the effect of the cut and recut blocks. Concept awesome. Bias edges lots of long ones. 
 But even with trimming  and pressing I did not like the final product


It looks so pretty when laid out. 



It looks better on camera.  I just don't like how the corners and lines did not match. 


Oh, well.   It is done.  I think I will finish it into a baby quilt.  ( My original intention anyway. )



Sunday, August 29, 2021

The Stitchery

 

The Stitchery is a quilt store in Wisconsin.   It is about an hour away from my home. 
And I have always enjoyed their kits which I have purchased at many quilt shows over the years. 
I recently became reacquainted with it through facebook:   the link if you want to see it: The Stitchery
You can see a tour of the shop.  

It is one of the featured quilts in my favorite quilt magazine, Quilt Sampler which comes out twice a year in spring about May and in fall and just came out this weekend. 
I have at least 18 years of issues.   I just love them and get so much inspiration from the displays, the colors, patterns shown, and displays. This is the new issue. 




The point of this is that I attended their celebration on Friday morning where they had cupcakes and cookies and so many wonderful things set up.  They were so excited to be featured and selected for the magazine. And I took a friend with me and made a rather large purchase. I even got the signature of her dad ( 90 years old) who makes many of the rag quilts and bulls eye quilts for the store. It was a great excursion.  Here is the page in the magazine with the "esteemed" signature. 

On to my latest sewing escapades. 
I am making sample blocks of a pattern by GE Designs for my quilt show committee. The pattern is Lucy.

It is made from 10 inch blocks, although you can do yardage. 
The pattern is 2 squares, cut and sewn and sliced again and then resewn.
I even purchased her Stipology Squared ruler, but mostly to use for cutting lots of strip piecing.



Here are 2 slightly different layouts of the 8 blocks I have. 

      

I am also attempting another color variation and I have changed the measurements to make smaller blocks.   It is mid process at the moment. 

The last thing I have to show is some counted cross. I have wanted to do the pattern all summer and am finally getting to it.   It is a sunflower that will have small branches curling around it with a border. 


I am thinking of my son and his family in Louisiana.   Hurricane Ida is not directly in his path, but it will be another struggle for the state after last year's Hurricane which put them out of power and work and school for a week. 

Positive thoughts for all those effected by the storm.
 











Wednesday, August 25, 2021

Springbrook!

 I thought I would do a post on my twin quilt finish.  This is Springbrook named after the fabric line. 

I love how the name reflects the water and spring flowers and the freshness of the colors. 


A show of the back with the front.  It is actually a white on white backing fabric. 


The quilt design is a daisy flowery swirl done on a longarmer. 


I just love how it turned out.


A photo done in the backyard, held by my fabulous husband.


I did  make a label for the graduate whom I know so well. 
You can even see the striped  lines of the fabric in the binding. 
Sorry, it is turned wrong. 


And for those who asked this is what my finger looks like two weeks after the rotary cutting accident. 
So much better and full usage!