Wednesday, January 13, 2021

2021 goals.....

Don't hold me to it, but I really want to get to the bottom of my "to-be-quilted" pile and this year seems like a good time to attempt it.  Some of these quilts have been on the "pile" for ......a very long time.  I can't even say it here  because it makes me ashamed that I have sat on some of these for so long.  

Today, I finished the first of these and the only reason I can say I have kept setting it aside was that I wanted to do custom work on it and for some reason (unless it is a customer quilt) I freeze and fret and and then finally ignore.

So, I just put it on the machine, like I do with customer quilts, and  let it speak to me.  

I started out with outlining all the chevron rows and the borders and then decided to do matchsticks in the lighter chevron rows using Cream Glide thread.



Made the decision to do something interesting in the light inner border by marking off 1" increments and did some ovals.  

I then changed to red Glide thread and echoed the red chevrons


....and for the outside border, I did some feather variations in the red thread, too.  

Here is the completed top.  It's a little larger than 40" square.  It would make a great wallhanging or a table topper.  




Here's a look at the backing with the two colored threads.  





By the way, this quilt is made up of cut off triangles from another quilt and because I love French General fabric sooo much, I just couldn't throw them out.  Goes to show you can make up something pretty decent with scraps  you would normally  throw out.  I am glad I kept them and then decided to see what I could make out of them.  I think it was well worth it.  

 

Friday, January 1, 2021

Good bye 2020.......

 Can't say I will miss you 2020, but the good thing that came out of this year was taking the time to get a huge amount of projects done.  

They say (whoever "they" is) that whatever you do on either New Year's Eve or New Year's Day, it is what you will do all year long.  Well, I bound my last three quilts for the year.  


This included my 13 Cats Halloween quilt, the big heart charity quilt and the dolphin charity quilt.  What a good feeling.  What really amazed me though was my two American Patchwork UFO Challenge sheets that were full (one for sewing and one for knitting)

Sewing wise:

1.  flannel pajama pants

2.  2000 Thimbleberries quilt.

3.  Ms Ivy's Red/Green quilt from 7-Sisters

4.  Four quilted bags

5.  Fall charity quilt

6.  Red Alphabet Charity quilt.

7.  Aqua flannel charity quilt.

8.  Plus quilt.

9  Lotto block yellow/blue quilt.

10.  Modern flower quilt.

11.  4-color sherbet quilt for charity.

12.  Heart/stripe charity quilt.

13.  Thirteen Cats Halloween quilt.

14.  Dolphin charity quilt.

15.  Smiley Face charity quilt.


Knit-wise

1.  Cat Love Hat.

2.  Pebble wrap.

3.  Alpacacino Sweater.

4.  Woodland Journey Shawl.

5.  Florentine Cocoon.

6.  Nymph Tee.

7.  Jeweled Cowl.

8.  Navelli Tee.

9.  Six Slipped Rib hats.

10.  GoldWing Sweater.

11.  Leaf Sweater Winter Edition.

12.  Socks.

13.  Baby Clover hat.

These lists don't even count the number of customer quilts that I finished this year for others which was more than I usually do.  

I am blowing myself away!  I need to keep up this momentum and just maybe (lol) I will work through all my UFOs and my stash.  Well, we all know that probably won't happen, but it sure is nice to think positively. 

So, here's to a new year.  Hope everyone has a very Happy New Year and a healthy one, too.  

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

Christmas aftermath......

 .....and just like that, Christmas is over.  How does that happen?

We had a lovely holiday celebrating with family on Christmas Eve.  The "white" stuff didn't show up until Christmas Day.  

So I thought I would share with you some of the highlights from our holiday. 

My daughter brought this great spinach/cheese breadstick tree.


Yummy!

I tried a new recipe that was a real hit.  Pretty easy to make and as my kids said, it was very gourmet.  This was suggested by my friend, Sharon.

It's a roasted squash salad with cranberries, walnuts, gorgonzola cheese, rosemary and honey.  Sooooo goooooood!!! 


 .

The most heartfelt gift I received this year was from my daughter who cross stitched US with the grandkids.  I just love it.  If you look closely, you can even see my bird Peaches who is 25 years old!


She had us all down to a "T".  These little characters can be found from a book by the The Stitch People.  She made one of these for each family and they were a real hit for everyone.

For the last couple of months, I had been working on some knit projects that I couldn't share until Christmas.   I was knitting Jodi Brown's Slipped Rib Hat .  There was a hat for each of my girls.





They were really simple to make, so I used up the remainder of the yarn from the rose and the green one and made two more.



Then with the left over plum yarn from my GoldWing Sweater, I made yet another one....


 and that's only because I have so much mohair left over from the other hats.


Here's my girls with their hats.



I managed to get a pair of socks finished Christmas night.



This was yarn I purchased at the Pittsburgh Yarn Festival back in 2018 and I was looking to do something with my hands in the evening (like I have a shortage), but was happy to get these started and done.  

At this point, I thought I would pack the needles away, but oh no!  
At the last minute I pulled out some yarn and made this baby hat.  It used up some yarn I had left over from a hat I made a couple years ago and it  utilized a pompom that I had lying around here.  

The hat pattern is Clover and can be found here.  

Although 2020 has felt like this......


I have to admit that it has made me knuckle down and get lots of quilting and lots of knitting done.  So that's not all bad.  

Still, here's hoping that 2021 will be a whole lot better in a whole lot of different ways





Thursday, December 17, 2020

Hot little needles

 Actually, these were hot "big" needles and this  project worked up pretty quickly,

I saw this pattern on Instagram (I really need to stop getting influenced on Instagram).

It's called the Leaf Sweater Winter Edition.

There was a yarn I wanted and it was out of stock at the time I was looking for it and lo and behold, there was someone on Ravelry who had exactly the amount I needed in their stash for sale......SOLD!  



There's a close up of the leaf pattern.  


Using the large needles and the chunkier yarn, this worked up so fast.  Look at how puffy it is looking.



In no time at all, the body was done.  All I had to do was the sleeves.


Here it is all complete. It's a bit scrunchy. Needs to be blocked and get that lace opened up.



After a little soaking, putting the sweater on the blocking boards and giving it a bit of a stretch, the lace opens up.   It will dry overnight.


......and after all that, it fits!!!


Wish I could admit that the needles have been put away, but I have already started a pair of socks.  Oh well,   I am keeping the hands busy and before we know it we will be in the depths of winter, so this is a great way to pass the cold winter months.  

Let's see what will be next.  There are plenty of things on the docket, but which one will be finished first is always a surprise.  


Wednesday, December 9, 2020

Pulling from charity stash

Being Charity Chairman for the guild, I have access to ALL the charity fabric stash.  I found a free pattern for this simple quilt and decided to pull some fabric that would work.  

The only thing I would have done different with this quilt is to not use fusible on the back of the whole heart.  I have problems with that gunking up my needle on my domestic machine and then found out that I had the same problem once  quilting it on the long arm.  

All-in-all this turned out to be a sweet quilt


The only solution I found for my needle was to wipe it down with alcohol; otherwise, my thread would keep breaking.  

I used the "Cupid" pantograph for this quilt.   You know....hearts.  



Cream Glide thread  on top and cream Filtec bobbins.  

This worked up pretty quick after the last couple quilts I have done, mostly because it was a small baby quilt. Another one off the "to-be-quilted" pile and onto the "needs binding" pile.  Thank goodness I am really good about cutting bindings when I cut out my quilts.  



When I get into the mood for putting bindings on, I will be spending a few evenings in a row doing my hand stitching.  

This  will be another charity quilt added to the pile since no one is accepting donations at this time.  Guess we will have to wait for things to settle down Covid-wise before I can deliver the numerous quilts that have accumulated from the guild members

My next few quilts are all custom, so they will take some time to complete and I have a commissioned quilt coming my way very soon. I'm trying to get as much done around here before that happens.  
Stay tuned.




 

Tuesday, December 8, 2020

Am I late?...or very early?

Everyone is talking  Christmas but here I am working on a Halloween quilt.

Am I late?  Yes, way late.  I appliqued these cats five years ago while I sat with my mom while she was in hospice.  Maybe that's why they sat for awhile as they brought back too many memories.  Then again, I am way early for next Halloween and it will be 100% done by then for sure.  


At a recent retreat, I got them out and put the top together.  


Everything was in a bag and ready to go.  I made my alternating blocks at retreat and then put the top together.  

There was a large piece of fabric for my backing.....glow in the dark.  There was enough for the back and for my borders.  I don't remember if I wanted to use it for my borders, but since I was at retreat and the goal was to get it done, that's what I went with.  That's why you shouldn't wait five years to get something done unless you write yourself some notes.

Not sure I am super happy with the end results, but now that it is quilted, it is growing on me.  I am tempted to make another one with a more controlled fabric palette  instead of so scrappy.  I loved  doing the reverse applique on the cats.

I quilted this using the pantograph called Diamonds are Forever.  It reminded me of little spider webs.  Black Glide thread on top and black Fil-tec bobbins .  


It will now go on the binding pile (that sounds worse than it really is).  There are only two quilts there right now, but I am in the mood for getting some of the "to-be-quilted" quilts done.  So for now I will try to keep my momentum going.  


ADDENDUM:

Here's a look at the book that this pattern came from.  It is out of print, but there are some available "used" online. 






 

Monday, December 7, 2020

The Incredible Mr. Limpet

Just saw this movie on TV the other day.  Don Knotts turns into a dolphin and ends up working for the Navy.

Then what do you know, I have a dolphin quilt to get quilted and that movie is all I can think of.  lol


The panto I used for this quilt is called "Sound Waves" which is reminiscent of the movie using sonar while Don Knotts was a spy for the Navy, 
I, also, thought it gave the look of waves in the ocean, too.


I matched the So Fine thread to the turquoise fabric using it both on top and in the bobbin.  

So, this is another quilt off the long arm; and soon to be keeping some young one warm this winter. 

Other than this, Christmas decorating is done, lots of knitting is taking place and now I need to get gifts wrapped.  Got to keep the momentum going.

 












 

2021 goals.....

Don't hold me to it, but I really want to get to the bottom of my "to-be-quilted" pile and this year seems like a good time to...