Archive for the ‘Quilting’ Category

Santa is Pieced

October 8, 2018

I’ve been busy working on projects, and can happily share the completed quilt top that has been a work in progress for a couple of years – yes a couple of years:

Santa Done

All that embroidery is by hand – the large Santas and the small cornerstone designs, then it was arranged differently from the original pattern.  I saw this setting at a quilt show and loved it, so made it happen for my quilt too.   Now for the quilting by check book.  😉

I also finished up a huck towel.  I’m a member of a few art groups, and this one tries new ideas every month.  All I can say is, huck embroidery is not my thing.  This is a one and done:

Huck

Now, what next?  I have so many new patterns I want to make, and so many unfinished projects that could be tackled.  Wonder which will win?

Hugs…

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Santa Quilt

September 1, 2018

No, it’s not Christmas, but it is September first.  Where in the world did summer go?  We’re still having summer weather, so it’s shorts and t-shirts being worn everyday, but Christmas in my sewing studio.  Why Christmas?  The Santa quilt has finally gotten some attention again.

I’ve talked about working on the Santa quilt so much here,  that it is way past time to give you all a status update.  This might take the record for taking me the longest quilt to piece, but here is how it looks so far:

First Row

The Santas are hand embroidered redwork designs (so are the little cornerstones inside the stars), and all  embroidery has been done for over a year.  I placed 5 little pieced blocks  around the Santas to add interest.  Then I added a 1/2″ black border to set off the blocks.  All 12 of them are ready to be added to the lattice.

Each lattice piece is different, and there is no pattern, and that is what I’ve consistently been screwing up.  I’m winging it and trying to make the stars wonky.  Wonky is hard for me.  Precise positioning is easy – as those little blocks around the Santas pretty much well prove my point.  Some of them have 32 pieces in them, and they finish to 4″.

I’ve taken each visit to the seam ripper with a good attitude though.  It’s only fabric.  I have more of it.  Mistakes happen, and either having to take BP medication for the first time in my life, or old age has mellowed me out.  Surprises even me.  😉

I love, love, love this quilt, and hope to get it completely pieced by the end of September, but am not making any promises.  I thought it would be pieced by the end of June, then the end of July, then the end of August.  Now I know it will be completely pieced when it’s ready to be completely pieced.

Hugs…

Free Motion Quilting

August 14, 2018

I used to be pretty good at FMQ, but my oh my, did that recent Comfort Quilt test my patience.  I lost my FMQ mojo.  That’s what happens when you don’t practice – often.

I was so upset that I was considering purchasing a new sewing machine – the Juki straight stitch only one – the mini version.  Came to my senses and realized, no, it wasn’t the sewing machine’s fault, it was little old me.

Determined to get better, I watched FMQ shows on YouTube and old Craftsy classes I had purchased, and practiced, practiced, practiced.  After 2 weeks of almost daily practice, this is what I sewed out today:

FMQ

Yes!!!  Now that’s more like it.  Not perfect, but I’m happy with the improvement.

I will now practice FMQ a few times a week, or I’ll lose my mojo again, and can’t let that happen.  😉

Hugs..

Good to Feel Good Again

August 3, 2018

It’s been a long haul here, but I’m finally feeling good again.  Let me tell you, it’s no fun to be dizzy, short of breath, and have no energy for a couple of months.  It lasted way too long, but am very grateful to be doing well again.

Comfort Quilt #16 was started in Tucson, and completed in Churchville.  It was free motion quilted on my Pfaff – with the nice big space between the needle and machine.  It’s the next best thing to a sit down quilting machine set-up.

Comfort Quilt 16

The fabric was gifted to me by a dear friend, and now I am passing along the good will by donating it to my quilt guild’s Comfort Quilt group.

Hugs…

 

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…

 

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…

 

 

 

 

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.

7143FA8D-3C48-444C-B0DB-B5D26CC76721

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:

ACD2CCDA-18C4-4E94-B5C3-EEC74B421478

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

Hugs…