Friday, September 4, 2015

Tula Blocks and Playing in the Scrap Bin

Bin? Seriously? Multiple bins.

This cabinet is 34" wide, 18" deep. I wish I could tell you this is all my scraps. No. It isn't. So today I played with some Halloween scraps. Voila! Mug rugs were hatched.

I made nine altogether, but this is pretty representative of how they look. So darn cute!

I did my requisite two Tula blocks today. Here are the ones I didn't show before, and today's blocks. (By the way, the theme of the first section is "Crosses".  I'm doing the blocks in order.)



I think this "2 a day" is going to be successful.  Let me know if you're playing along.

It was an enjoyable day, just playing with fabric. We should all do that more often.

Thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Mojo Re-engaged. Maybe. Probably.

Life.  It happens.

I've remained productive, though.  The latest:

Scottsdale Pattern

Wristlets (to be added to Etsy soon)

Swell, from Camille Roskelley's Retro Book

The top and bottom quilts are with the long-armers, waiting their turn.  I've been on quite a wristlet kick lately, too. Maybe because they finish quickly. (Sometimes you just want to finish something, you know?)

I've started working weekends at my local quilt shop, and will begin teaching there again in the spring.  One of my "classes" (not really a class - more of an incentive program) will include making the Tula Pink sampler blocks.  Yes, all 100 of them.  My block budget is 8 blocks a week, so I do 2 a day Tuesday - Friday.  (Working the weekend, and my sewing group meets on Monday).  It's working so far. The blocks are all very simple, but so many of us are used to cutting lots of pieces for lots of block at one time.  For the Tula blocks, you cut one at a time.  Not many pieces, but still not what I've  been doing for the past many years.  Here are a the first few:




I'm also keeping a photo of the fabrics I used in each block.  They measure 6" (finished), so those are some tiiiiiiiny pieces.  I'm working from the scrap bins, and shouldn't have to resort to the stash.  I should take a pic of my scrap stash. Or maybe not - I might be too embarrassed! Stay tuned!

So, although I've been silent, I've stayed busy. Thanks again for hanging in there with me. And thanks for stopping by.

2015 counts
Tops: 11 
Finishes: 26 (16 quilts, 10 other) (this isn't updated for the latest wristlets)

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Some things that got finished

The Double Irish Chain is finally finished.  I bought this fabric bundle at PIQF in Santa Clara last fall. Of course I had to add to it so it would be bigger. I'm thrilled with the way this turned out.  Love the quilting! Although it's not really noticeable in the photos' there are 16 fabrics in the binding. Scrappy quilt, scrappy binding. Love this one!

Finally finished the gecko piece. I'm not sure it'll ever be "finished", really, though, because I'll be adding embellishments.  Lots and lots of embellishments.

My scrap play is also finished. I first tried alternating the red "cross" blocks with the scrappy blocks, but it was too much red.  I randomly replaced cross-blocks with more scrappy blocks until I was happy with the look.  The stars are from my Parts Department.  (See either of Freddy Moran/Gwen Marston's books for ideas for Parts Departments.)

So three more finishes for 2015, and a bunch more getting close.  Thanks for stopping by!

2015 counts
Tops: 9 
Finishes: 26 (16 quilts, 10 other)

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Why nothing?

The short answer: because there's nothing to show. I've been doing a lot of prep work for projects. That's time consuming, but not interesting in the least. Yesterday was sew-day, and I got enough of my scrappy-strippy blocks made to begin putting the top together.

That shouldn't take too long, so I should have more the show later in the week.

I'm still here, prepping, and that means I'll probably have another flurry of things to show in the next week or so. Thanks for stopping by for this boring post!

Monday, June 1, 2015

May was a Productive Month

Happy June!

The blog hasn't had any activity because there's been nothing to show, but I now have something to write about.  Yesterday, the last day of May, I finished 2 more quilts, and 2 more "others". I made a big dent in my UFO pile last month. Here are my latest finishes.

This pattern is called "Ashley", from one of my many fat quarter books. I remember working on this in my room in Santa Fe, NM, and that was at least 3 years ago, so it's been in the UFO stack for awhile. 

Traditional binding. Funny story about that. I had attached the binding, and ran about 8" short. Argh! I did some asking around, but the fabric is so old that no one had any more. I put the quilt away, with a back-up plan for "just in case". Sure enough, though, when looking through my scraps (reason unremembered at this point), there was the binding fabric, with more than enough for the small section I needed to add. Love it when that happens! Great complimentary quilting of ginkgo leaves and berries done by the ladies at Lynn's.

I didn't have quite enough of the yellow/purple fabric, so added a strip of "something else". 

Red tumblers. This is a small piece - the tumblers are just 3" high. I cut them on my GoBaby cutter using only scraps. No new fabric was harmed in the making of this piece.  Simple (almost) straight line quilting done by yours truly. I started the quilting using YLI 40-weight machine quilting thread, but my Bernina coughed and hacked like a healing pneumonia patient. Weird! Switched to rayon and sailed right along. (The experience wasn't that simple: it took me about 90 minutes of tinkering to finally figure out it was the thread. If you're having stitch problems, keep trying till you narrow down exactly what the problem is.  It'll save you a bundle on service costs.) 

Traditional binding on this one, also - because for some reason I had this black binding already made. Who knows? I had cut this binding only 2" wide, but it turned out to be perfect for this small piece.  Moving my needle position 3 ticks to the right gives me the perfect measurement when attaching the binding with my walking foot.

The back.

After I finished the quilts, I picked up the next thing I saw, which were these wool pincushions. I had done all the handwork on the circles during my trips to California this year, then began stuffing them when I got home. Last night they finally made it to the top of the list and got finished.  I have a bunch more of these to do. They're fun!

And so May went.  Thanks for stopping by!

2015 counts
Tops: 8 
Finishes: 23 (13 quilts, 10 other)

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Last One for the Holiday Weekend

I finished one more quilt yesterday.  I'm considering my in-home retreat a giant success! I started this quilt when I got to California (the first time) this year. I'd brought multiple projects with me because I knew I had 3 weeks of dedicated sewing time. But are our current projects ever enough? Actually they would have been, but when we got to San Juan Bautista and I saw this quilt on the wall, I had to have it. So here it is - all finished!

This pattern is Red Letter Day by Camille Roskelly. So fun and cute!

Fabulous quilting by the girls at Lynne's. 

Yes, magic binding again, but I used a white flange so it would blend in with the background.

Close-up for the little cuties on the back. Sorry but I was too lazy to flip this photo.  😊

Cute backing for a cute quilt. This quilt is just full of too much cuteness!

Now it'll go be a sample for awhile.

Here's the recap of the last few quilts. Boy, does it feel good to get these done!

That's it for today. Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, May 25, 2015

A Productive Day - 4 more finishes

I had quite the productive day yesterday. At least it seems that way at first glance.  In reality, I am terrible at finishing things! I get to the 90% mark, then get bored and put it down (whatever "it" is). Well,  the goal of this in-home retreat is to get things finished. Completely. OFF the UFO list.  These quilts needed only bindings to be completed, but if you're a quilter reading this, you know I'm not alone when it comes to the binding part. The Magic Binding technique has changed that for me.  I know some purists will poo-poo their disapproval, but ... remember when we used to look down our noses at quilts that had been omigod-quilted-by-machine?  Yes. That. So without further ado, - the day in pictures.  

I don't even remember how long ago I made this quilt. The fabrics tell me it was a long time ago, though. Sometimes, after I put something down at the 90% mark, I completely forget about it.  Well, now it's a finished quilt. The pattern is called "Fat Quarter Fun".

I used plain muslin for the flange piece of the magic binding.

The corners really do meet easily, even with the two different fabrics.

One of my favorite things to do with backs! These are two apron panels from Joann's Fabrics. They were in my stash, because I guess I thought I'd get around to making them.  Instead, I used them on the back of this quilt, then continued adding fabrics until the back was large enough.  I love doing backs this way.

This is a really good representation of the colors.  The full pic of the quilt is too washed out.

Next up is the Jaguars quilt for my niece.

It's extra-special now because I used my Route 66 fabric as the backing (road trips, away games, doncha know).

The quilting step was done by my friends over at Long Arm Quilting by Lynn Graham.

We don't have many cold days here, but hopefully my niece and her family will be able to bundle up at the occasional cool Jags game.

Next is the nautical quilt. Doesn't it remind you of Nantucket? Gosh this one came out great, again mostly due to the quilting done over at Lynne's. 

The backing. Oh, the backing! It's a piece of heavy home dec fabric that I got on EBay years ago.  It finally found it's home on the back of this quilt. It's a perfect match! Sometimes fabric has to age until just the perfect moment. Sorta like good wine, yes? The top has lots of linen and chambray, so the back really is a great complement to the front. (Actually, that's somewhat unusual for me!) this will be a sample at Cinnamon's Quilt Shoppe for awhile.

Bad color again. There's no blue, but more of a deeper aqua.  (I'm a quilter,  not a photographer.)

Don't you just love the fruit quilting motif? Again done over at Lynne's. 

How could I NOT put the fruit-butt ladies on the back?

Good color here. Guess I'm using too much light on the full shots. 

I'll leave you with a tip: when you are pressing long strips, pressing them on a towel will keep them from distorting and getting all curvy. Remember to fluff the towel "often" if you're doing lots of pressing.

And that was my Sunday! Today (Memorial Day here in the USA) we remember, and thank, all those in uniform that didn't make it home.

Thanks for stopping by!

2015 counts
Tops: 8 
Finishes: 18 (10 quilts, 8 other)