Delilah Pieced

May 17, 2018

Oh Happy Days!!!  Delilah is pieced.  I’ve hired a long arm quilter to do the quilting as the sheer number of seams in this quilt has intimidated the bejeebers out of me.

My Delilah completedI attempted to create some places for your eye to rest by using a red and white polka dot fabric for most of the small solid colored squares in this quilt.  I don’t think that was successful, but it did result in a much lighter, brighter quilt – which is fine by me.

Delilah made her debut for Show and Tell today at an art group meeting, and after the reveal, I was rewarded by a resounding silence.  Seems this quilt is not for everyone.  That’s okay.  I kind of like it.  After grousing about it from day one,  I’ve finally come around to appreciating her.

So far there have been only 2 people who responded well to this quilt.  One because of the pattern complexity, and the other because of the bright colors.  I’ll take all the positive responses I can get after working on this for a full 12 months.

Tomorrow, I’ll cut the backing fabric, iron the top again, remove all the little threads, then package it all up for Kim Swink – the talented long arm quilter I’ve hired.

Next up is either the Comfort Quilt I made in Arizona, or the Santa quilt.  I haven’t decided which project it will be yet, but I really like both of them, so have some happy, creative days ahead of me.

Hugs…

 

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Delilah on the Design Wall

May 8, 2018

Finally, all the large and small blocks are completed – including the 31 small pinwheels, and they are up on my design wall under review:

My Delilah on the design wallThe lighting is terrible, but I am so proud of myself for getting this far.  I have remade a couple of blocks, and am thinking about remaking one of the pinwheels, but assembly has commenced.

There is still one large block that I think should be remade, but it was one stinker of a block to make.  You can probably tell which one I’m talking about – the grey and weird yellow green block a little left of center.

I was determined to use all the fabric I received in my fabric kit.  This was supposed to stretch my use of color, and it did.  Most of the fabric was great, but I seriously disliked some of the fabric.   That weird yellow green was in the fabric kit, but I’m the one responsible for using it, and for pairing it with the grey.  I think it would look a lot better if I removed the fabric around the 8 pointed star, and replaced it.  Sheesh, I just talked myself into it.

Aaargh, this quilt will never be completed.  It’s been a looooooong 12 months, and I learned I will never, ever enroll for a block of the month, or a template of the month again.  Just as I got in the swing of the quilt, I’d finish the month, then have to wait for the next shipment to arrive.

I like focusing on one quilt project at a time, and simply couldn’t get my brain wrapped around working on another challenging project that was in the works.  I solved the problem by shelving the other challenging project, and making a Comfort quilt with very easy piecing so I could happily sew with my quilt group while in Tucson, but really wanted to wrap up work on Delilah so I could go back to my Santa quilt – the other challenging project.  How about that for a run-on sentence?

Now this one-project-at-a-time person, is working on Delilah, wanting to work on the Santa quilt, and has a pin basted Comfort quilt that needs to be quilted.  This causes me stress.  I don’t like stress.  Neither does my blood pressure, and I didn’t have high blood pressure – till now.

It’s all rather silly.  I’m in control of whether I say yes or no to a project.  I just recently had to back out of participating with my friends on a solid fabric quilting challenge that was due in May.  It would have been great fun to display all the quilts together, but I would prefer to survive Spring.  It is awfully pretty in Upstate New York in Spring.  Who wants to be inside sewing all the time when they could be outside in the sunshine, listening to the birds, and seeing what blooms next?

Hugs…

 

 

9 Black Cockatoo Blocks Completed

April 23, 2018

My oh my, I had issues with sewing this simple block.  I have no clue why this happened, but Black Cockatoo, and the substitution I used – Interwoven Star from EQ-8 almost defeated me.  I don’t know if it was because I was excited this was the last shipment, or because I wanted to zip through the process so I could start assembling the quilt.

Here is picture of all 9 blocks:

9 Black CockatooThe bottom right one is the way Jen designed the block, and it grates on my nerves, so I only made one according to the pattern.  The Interwoven Star design is nicely balanced, with resting spots for my eye, so the other 8 blocks I made were that design.

The only onesthat laid perfectly flat was the first one I made on the first row on the left, and the paper pieced one I made that is in the middle of the bottom row.  All the rest had to be ironed into submission.  Have no clue why, as the fabric was all cut the same way, but they needed quality time with my iron and Best Press.

Next are a bunch of half square triangles, and hopefully, they’ll be completed this week.

We are back from Tucson, and while I miss the sun, I don’t miss the really hot temperatures they are having now. And it is oh so great to be back home so I can  pull fabric from my collection, and leave it on my cutting table, chairs, and various tables, then close the door and not see the mess.

We live in our RV when we’re in Tucson, and you really have to put everything away, everyday, or you have no room to eat, or prepare meals.  It wastes a lot of time, and the older I get, the more aware I am of wasted time.

My solution?  I’m going to try and bring more handwork projects down next year.  Setting up and taking down the sewing machine will be reserved for when I go to the craft room with our quilting group.  There is plenty of room to spread out there.

Hugs…

 

Princess Blocks Completed

March 30, 2018

 

Happy Days!!!  This block was oh so pretty, and such a pain in the neck to make.  Lots and lots of pieces, but I promised you I’d show you the 2nd variation of it, and made my last two blocks using this variation.

Here’s what it looks like partially put together:

mine 8a

I combined 2 templates to create one new one for the center pieces.

mine 8

And that is the block completed.  Do I like it?  Not really.  It’s pretty, but doesn’t look enough like the original Princess Cut block design.  It was a piece of cake to piece, as I eliminated 8 seams from a seam heavy 6″ block, but it doesn’t appeal to me as much as the 1st variation I made.

Since I had already cut out the material for another block using this 2nd variation, I did sew it together:

mine 9The Princess Cut blocks are now completed, and it’s a good thing they are, as I received the templates for the last block – Black Cockatoo this week.  More new fabric, new templates, and a new design to create.  Let the fun begin!!!

Hugs…

Delilah Princess Cut Blocks

March 24, 2018

I have been busy having a good time on vacation, and doing a little sewing.  The Delilah Princess Cut templates arrived, and 32 pieces in a finished 6″ block makes for a lot of seams.  See?

mine 1

mine 2

mine 3

mine 4

One of the fabrics I received has a nice oval design which was pretty large for any of the pieces in this block.  What to do?  What to do?  Create a new template!  I traced the template onto the back of the fabric, then flipped the template over to draw the other half of the design – matching up the dots.  I now had template large enough to handle the fabric design:

mine 5 explained

Whoa, I apologize for the blurry picture.  I must have moved my hand when taking the photo, but if you don’t mind squinting, you can see that the oval shapes are complete – with no seam down the middle of the fabric design.  Success!

Flush with that accomplishment, I realized it would now require a different piecing assembly, and guess what?  It was actually easier to piece this block by eliminating 4 of the seams.

I didn’t finish piecing this block, so you could follow along if so desired.  I pieced the tiny triangles in the block center together into pairs, and pressed the center seam open.  Pieced the fabric with the oval design on it to that section.  Then it was simply a matter of sewing the text fabric pieces to the sides, and adding the corner fabric pieces.

I ended up with 4 ltriangles that were pieced together to form yet another larger triangle – which was half the block, seen on the right side of the photo.  Then simply piece the two large triangles together to form the completed block.  Voila!

I am so pleased that I was able to make use of the complete fabric design as a feature of this block, and ended up with less bulky seams, and still honored the block design.  That was a trifecta of happiness, and one long sentence.  What can I say?  My brain works in threes.  😉

Stay tuned, because my next bright idea will do away with 8 seams.  I hope to get that block cut out and sewn this week.  It’s kind of hard to concentrate on sewing when the weather in Tucson is so gorgeous, but I really want to complete all 9 of the Princess Cut Blocks while I’m still in Tucson.  The next, and last, TOM will be shipped soon, and it would be great if I could start on that when it arrives.

Hugs…

 

 

 

 

An Ending and a Beginning

March 10, 2018

After nearly 40 years of being in business, I closed Dimity down officially yesterday. Filed my last NYS sales tax forms and will complete my last federal paperwork later this month.

It is a bittersweet time for me. I truly thought I’d stay in business till the day I died. You know what made the decision for me?  I’m sick of filing the forms when I’m on vacation in Tucson every Spring. Such a little irritation, but one I didn’t want to bother doing anymore.

It will be nice having simplified tax forms next year too. The less forms I have to fill out, the happier I am.

My business experienced a lot of change over the years, and I enjoyed each and every challenge.  From selling knitting machines, writing patterns and teaching across the USA and Canada, to hand dyeing yarn, purchasing beads from Tucson’s great shows and reselling them, to exhibiting art quilts and selling some.  When one revenue source died, another was explored.  Life was never boring.

While my business is closed, I still have lots to explore.  Not sure if I’ll be starting a new blog or not, but there will definitely be different subject matter discussed now.

Garment making will most likely be pursued, and I doubt I could give up quilt making.  So stayed tuned, folks.  There is more to come.

Hugs…

 

 

 

Last 5 Mayflower Blocks

February 25, 2018

Ta-da!!! All the Mayflower Blocks are completed before month 11 templates arrive – even with the delay in receiving them. I’m oh so proud of myself.

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20891E1A-301A-4D1B-9054-CE9FE58BD14F

22FF058B-2188-4645-90E7-2D33ED56B8F1

6A579BF0-EE5B-4E56-A6F4-122EAA651869A96EE965-7028-4F42-9AC8-1F01FFFD5665

Looking forward to receiving the next set, and might start making some of the 31 half square triangles needed to complete Delilah.   That will happen if I finish piecing the Comfort Quilt I’m also making. Now that I’m mobile, I’m getting to join all the quilters in our resort, and in danger of running out of quilt projects while in Tucson. That’ll teach me not to pack so light for future trips.

Hugs…

4 Mayflower Blocks

February 20, 2018

A few days of rain in Tucson resulted in me cutting out the fabric for all 9 Mayflower blocks. I usually select the fabric for a Delilah block, sew it up, then select the fabric for the next block. It is much more efficient to cut all the fabric at once, but I never bothered to do so at home for this quilt, probably  because I have lots of options at home.  Not so many in my 34’ RV.

No complaining though.  Lots of options, makes it harder to make decisions. It’s good to switch it up every so often.

So here are the first 4 Mayflower blocks:

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59DC4DB8-38DC-4BBB-9B64-F4026E35059DF6585762-56B6-45A5-9014-CFFF9CE919B02359E603-E145-4209-A0FF-C07F4E669DC6

Hugs…

 

 

Last 2 Sprinkled Delight

February 4, 2018

I’m happy to say the last 2 of these block designs are completed. Each one is different and I am very ready to start the next design.

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The next fabric kit has not arrived yet so it’s a good test of my patience. My husband will tell you I have none, but I’m thinking he’s wrong,  as I’m not swearing and complaining about it much.  It’s hard to get upset about mail delays  when I’m in my happy place, and Tucson is most definitely my happy place in the winter.

Hugs…

 

 

Another 2 Sprinkled Delight Blocks

February 3, 2018

These little blocks are slowly but surely being completed, and one of them was actually sewn according to the directions.

This TOM was driving me crazy till I finally loosened up about it. I’ve never made a quilt using a fabric kit, and it forced me to work with colors a different way.  It took me 8 months to go with the flow. Yeah, I know, I know. Took me long enough, but it’s good to know I don’t have a closed mind. The doors might be mighty rusty, and take their own sweet time to open up, but they do still open.

This first block is the one done according to the directions, and the other is a variation on the design.

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5F136639-5511-47B1-9F1E-47C57CD78044Hugs…