Sunday, June 15, 2014

Not Much Sewing

This has been a strange 10 or so days for me - - I have done little to no sewing! I think I've been decompressing

I did do a little sewing on a little jumper for my almost granddaughter. Does anyone else have an almost grandchild? My best friend's daughter had a baby last July and since I have known her since before she was born 27 years ago, she considers me her second mom. Little Caroline, along with her mom and dad, live in Newfoundland, Canada while her daddy works on a project there. When I went to Newfoundland last July with her grandmother to see her and help out her mom, I bought the Newfoundland plaid material to make her a jumper. I want to send it to her since it should fit soon but I'm having trouble putting the buttonholes in it. It's very weird to make perfect buttonholes on a scrap fabric but have to unsew the buttonholes (not once but twice) on the jumper itself. I have put it aside for a day or so and then I'll try again. 
This is what it looks like so far.

FABRIC SWAP: I am doing something new for me - I'm participating in a brick fabric swap. I saw a notice for a swap by It was for American Made Brand solids so I decided 
to participate. There are 50 colors 
of solid fabrics that are made in the US. Each participant was assigned
2 colors to cut into 25- 5 x 10 inch bricks (I was assigned dark raspberry and lime). After they've all been cut, sent in, and sorted, I will receive 1 brick of  each color in the mail. There is a link on my sidebar to the original post about the swap. Here are my two colors. I don't know yet what I will do with the bricks - I'm open to ideas if anyone has anything!
Leave a comment if you can think of something good. I will post pictures of the bricks when I get them.

BOM: The last thing that I started working in on (but not sewing or quilting yet) is my June Block of the Month. I have gone through my fabrics and chosen the ones that I will use. I have them cut and ready to start sewing. The larger ones are for half-square triangles- I like to sew 2 larger squares together and then cut into 2 HST and trim to size. The directions just use 2 squares the size needed that are sewn on the diagonal and the extra trimmed off. When I do that, my squares are never large enough and I feel wasteful. Here are my squares; the uncut silver/gray fabric is for the skate blades which are added after the block is finished. If you look close, you can see a picture of the finished block. There will be 4 skate blocks joined together for this month. See sidebar for link to this BoM. 

GOALS: I have several goals for the rest of the month for my sewing and quilting. I need to finish the block of the month and the jumper for Caroline. I also really need to finish the weighted blanket that I started for my niece's son (I had to suspend work on it when my back started hurting too much to deal with the weight) and get it in the mail to him. The last thing I want to do this month is to get my craft room straightened up and reorganized. I may not get it finished but my goal is to at least get started with it!

The last call link up has gone out for everyone's triangle quilt. All quilts that are linked by the end of July are eligible for a prize. You should stop by and look at all the quilts that have been done. They are really nice!

Wednesday, May 21, 2014


Block of the Month
I have finished my May block of the month from Quilt Doodle designs (see side bar for a link to more information). This block of the month is a challenge for me because because it uses 2 ½ inch squares. This month we are making a fir tree to go beside of our house. We've already made a larger tree for the one side and this cute little tree looks so good on the other side. Here are some pictures.

May's block

The house, tree, and star blocks will placed just like they are and the snowman block will go below the house a little bit.
Jan - May blocks
Below is a picture of my new best friend when making HST blocks. I had seen these Bloc_Loc rulers and knew I just had to have some of them. There is a groove on the back that fits over your seam allowance and allows you to line up and cut your block easily. I bought a set that has 2½, 4½, and 6½ inch squares and I really like them. I did find out the hard way that you need to  make sure to put it on the square the right way. I had to throw out one of my blocks because the seam did not go from corner to corner. I marked the side that needs to go on the seam line with an S to make sure I put it the right way after that.
Can you see the S that I wrote on it?

Table runner
One day I had a few minutes and decided to cut out a table runner that a friend and I were both making. She had struggled a bit with this runner that was labeled "easy" so I wanted to see how difficult it really was. It went together pretty easily and now I'm ready to back it and do a little quilting on it. The colors go with the colors in my house and will look even better when I get the green binding on it.

I don't know what I'll be working on next. I have several projects that need some finishing that I may make a priority. 
Have a good rest of the week!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Finished Projects

I can't believe it's almost the middle of May. I have worked so many days since Spring Break here that I can't believe that I have finished anything at all. I will not be working on Wed for only the 4th day since April 21st. That may not sound like a lot but when you are a substitute teacher and it is 6 weeks or less until school gets out, it's a lot. Oh well, I will have some money to carry me into the summer!

So here are the quilts that I have completed in the last several weeks.

1. Triangle Quilt Along . . .  is finally finished. I did not get it finished by the original deadline but sometimes there are more important things than finishing with everyone else. I am so pleased with the way it turned out - I love the teal and red together! Here are a few pictures that I took today when I got home from school.

The front, blowing in the breeze

I used some leftover triangles to make
the back pop!
I just love the way quilts look
draped over this old rocker.

You can see the quilting and where I signed the quilt.

2. Baby Quilt for a cousin.
Okay, I must confess . . . this is the reason that I did not finish the triangle quilt when it was scheduled. There was a baby shower for my husband's second cousin and when I saw this fabric bundle at my local quilt shop, I just knew I needed to make her a quilt with it. It was a great match for the things that she registered for and I fell in love with the fabric. I did order the elephant fabric to go with the bundle and had to wait for before I could start the quilt. It was a very simple quilt and did not take me very long to do. I was more than happy with the way it finished and she loved it too. Here is Jill's gray and yellow baby quilt (with elephants!).

Finished quilt.

I did stippling block by block - my first
attempt at stippling the whole quilt.
See the cute little elephants?

 3. April's Block of the Month from Quilt Doodle Designs was finished on time by the end of April. I make it a priority to do my block each month so I don't fall behind. The blocks are not usually hard (well, two and a half inch squares do challenge me but I'm getting better) so it's not usually hard to get each one finished in it's month. 
Close up.

For April we did a row of stars.

All stretched out.

The four blocks in their position.
For May, we're making a smaller tree to go on the other side of the house. Look for it soon.

Have a great week! Not much sewing scheduled for me, although I'm sure I'll get some in. I do have May's block of the month to finish!

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Quilt Progress

This post is much later than I had planned on because the blog was acting up - it wouldn't open anything so that I could work on it - the post that I had started and when I started a new one I could not type in it! Oh well . . .  it's working now!

It has been a busy time for me lately and I think it will slow down for sewing and quilting the next several weeks because I will be working a lot of days (I'm a substitute teacher so work is here and there). Anyway, I wanted to show the progress that I have made.

PROJECT #1 Triangle Quilt Along
This is the end week 5 for the triangle quilt along. I had a post almost ready last week but never got it finished! Here is what I have done for the last several weeks. During week 2 we cut all of our triangles and laid them out.

Week 3 brought the sewing together of triangles into rows. I only managed to finish 7 of the 12 rows during the week.

For week 4, we were to sew the rows together to have a completed top. Since I had 5 rows of triangles left to sew first, I wasn't sure that I would make the deadline. But hooray, I did manage to finish sewing the triangles into rows then sewing all the rows together.

For week 5/6 , we need to quilt and bind our quilt. I have my binding ready and I'm all ready to quilt it except that I cannot decide how I want to do it. Most people are quilting in straight lines on each side of the seams. Because it's already angular, I thought maybe a different design with some small curves might be nice. 

I'm open to suggestions for quilting! The goal is to have it finished by May 3.

PROJECT #2 Weighted Blanket
The blanket that I started had to be put on hold. Somehow I hurt my back and that made it difficult to handle the weight. I did get to finish the weighted lap blanket and here is a picture of it. I hope to start again soon on the larger blanket since my back is doing much better.

PROJECT #3 Quilt Doodle Block of the Month

I put this project on hold until after Easter because of the next project. I have begun piecing this month's block. I would like to have it finished by the end of April so I will be ready for May's block.

PROJECT #4 T&F's Quilt
This is what I spent a lot of time on for about 10 days before Easter. My friend Angie, who is also a quilter, and I made a quilt together. You see, her daughter is married to my son. So we decided to make them a quilt and started it last fall in their color choice of gray and yellow. We made an easy chevron - she did the left half and I did the right half. After we had it quilted, we divided up the rest of the work. She joined the sides together and put on the binding. I put the 2 borders on and made some shams and throw pillows to go with it. We both went to see them on Easter weekend and took it to them. We were very pleased with how it turned out and so were they.
Pillow sham

Border and close up of quilting

I made the small throw pillow and the one on the right.
It looks great on my bed!
 You can't really see the quilting in the gray fabrics but they kind of echo the feathers in the yellow. 

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Triangle Quilt Along

Week 2 we cut our triangles - 206 of them! Here are mine.

Next we laid out our triangles in 12 rows with 17 triangles in each one.
 I started sewing mine but wasn't really happy with it. So I snapped a few black and white pictures to see what stood out. I had an area with no darker reds and an area with too many darker reds. This picture is after I was satisfied with the new layout.
  1. Here is some chain piecing.

 Can you see the little pins? I was having trouble keeping up with which triangle was supposed to be pointed up and which needed to be pointed down so this is the system I devised. I pinned only the odd ones on the straight side, moving the pin to the right a little on each pair. This row has been sewn in pairs with the extra guy on the top. It has really been a big help to mark this way. I used glass head pins in case I accidentally ironed over them.

This is when I was halfway finished piecing the rows. 

Tomorrow or Saturday I'll have another post with week 4. This is the post that I forgot to post last week!

Have a great day on Friday!

Friday, March 28, 2014

Too Many Projects?

This past week hasn't seen much sewing but it has seen a lot of planning. I've got several things in the works and I'd like to tell you about them.

Front and back fabrics     

  First project: I'm working on a weighted blanket for  my niece's   son and hopefully when I'm finished, it will help him  sleep        better. I'm making it from some space fabric that he  picked  out. It's not really a difficult thing to make except that I'm  trying to make it so that it can be made longer as he grows. So I'm  making it with an inner lining that will be weighted and a cover.  I've drawn the plans and am waiting for the delivery of the poly  pellets (the weight) and a roll of velcro (to keep the lining from  sliding around inside the cover).

Second project: I'm getting ready to do a quilt along using triangles (see button on side if you're interested). I don't think that I've ever done a project with triangles before. It begins today, March 28th, so I spent some time going through my stash to see what I might want to use. I found some fat quarters that I'd been collecting that were aqua and red. Of course I did not have enough fabric for the  project so I headed off to the quilt store to find a few more fabrics. I found what I needed and am all ready for cutting instructions. Here are my fabrics.
Partially sewn pinwheel

Third project: While waiting for supplies for project #1 and instructions for project #2, I had a desire to sew something. I found a twister wall hanging that I had laid out a while back. It's made with 2" squares - I had bought some precuts from Primitive Gatherings at Quilt Festival. So . . . I've been sewing it together. So far I have each row of 9 squares sewn together and some of the rows sewn together. After I finish sewing it, I will cut it with the Itty Bitty Primitive Pinwheels Tool and sew it back together. 

On Monday I have a class at my local quilt shop, Quilter's Crossing, making fabric bowls. It's a class that I originally signed up for about 2 years ago. It got rescheduled several times and then I couldn't go. I've tried several times to make it and my chance is finally here. Look for some pictures next week. Of course, I've got to cut some 1 1/4 inch strips over the weekend before I go.

Have a good Friday and a great weekend! I'm off to pick up a quilt from the quilter today.


Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Spring Break Projects

The school district where I substitute had spring break last week, so I had spring break as well. Even though I took it easy a bunch I was determined to get a few things done. The first quilting project that I finished was the block of the month that I am working on. It's by quiltdoodle designs and even though the final project is a surprise, we were able to figure out that it will a picture quilt. At least that's what I'm calling it - it will have a scene on it rather than just quilt blocks. I can't wait to see how it finishes out (it's a winter theme). So . . . here is my March block, called Big Tree.

Here it is with the Feb. block called Cozy Cabin.

You can see that they are made with 2 1/2 inch squares, which I have a hard time with. On these 2 blocks, I measured after each time that I sewed so I could be sure that they were the right size. It took longer that way but I think the results were good!

On Saturday, I helped a friend with a table runner that we had picked out for her to make that was "easy" but she was having some trouble with. We finally found the main problem, fixing some small boo-boos along the way. 
This made me want to make the runner that I had the fabric for to see if it really was easy. It's called Easy Striped Table Runner from The Quilt Company. I did not have the 60º triangle ruler it called for but was able to use the 60º marking on my ruler to make the proper lines. Anyway, less an hour later, I had the top put together. On Sunday evening I spent another 45 minutes to cut the batting and backing, sew them together, and add a little quilting. So here it is.

 Stretched out on the table.

Close up view

I put green on the back so that I could use it at Christmas.

Here are 2 of the placemats I made from the leftover fabric this morning. To conserve fabric, I ended up with 2 different looks. I'm probably going to go buy just a little more fabric so that I can make a few more and then I'll finish them all.

I hope you had a fun and productive week last week, even if you didn't have spring break!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

A blog for me

Well, I've decided to enter the world of blogging. I will probably only post every once in a while but thought it would be a good place to show what I'm working on. I enjoy reading other blogs and once even needed a place to blog about a BoM project that I did. I had to let someone else host my blog . . .  but not anymore. Soon I will post what I am working on so keep an eye out every once in a while.

This is the result of the cold and rain that we rarely have together in Texas but was here on Tuesday. Brrr it was cold!

I hope you have a wonderful day!