Tuesday, December 31, 2013

New Years Eve.....New Project.....

Delivered the wedding quilt today and just couldn't resist starting a new baby quilt for my son's friend who just had a little girl named Ella.
Her mom said the baby's room was going to be purple, so here are the fabrics that I chose.
My plan was to do something simple and preserve the cute "life saver fabric" as much as possible, so I chose this pattern that my friend, Sharon,  had made. You can see her quilt top in my December 22nd post.   It is a quick and easy chevron....not made with half square triangles, but more like a split rail.  Here is the pattern.
 I cut the strips.
Sewed them in pairs.
Sub-cut them here.
Started laying them out here.
There's not waste here, but that really wasn't the pattern or the look that I was going for.
So laid them out correctly here.
There will be some waste on the outside edges, but this gives you that true chevron look.
Here's a close up.
To sew this together, the rows will have to be sewn diagonally.  I think I will be doing that on New Years Day, but hey....this is a pretty good start for the new year. 
I will be using the  little purple and white daisy fabric for the backing and I have a panto all picked out to get this all stitched up and ready to be shipped off to little Ella and her family.
It is exciting to get started on something new for 2014.  I am looking forward to a great year.
Happy New Year everyone!

Monday, December 30, 2013

Strings and Threads

That's the name I am giving the wedding quilt for my son and his wife.   Why? .....it is made up of strings and threads only (not counting the batting....lol)
It's been a long time coming.  What with issues with my long arm (shame on me for not getting to fixing that quicker), work, illnesses, broken arm, work,  baby shower and baby born to our family, wedding shower, baby,  wedding, baby......(sigh), makes me tired thinking of it all, but I sure have enjoyed that baby and the wedding was great, too.    Next year is going to be a better year for sure..  No babies being born and no more weddings in the family 
Anyways, you can read more about the planning of this quilt here
Here is a picture of the backing. 
Love this fabric. 
Here's a close up of the front and back. 
I did a wavy line for the quilting and I think it softens up the hard lines on the front and for the backing I think it gives a wood grain look to the trees. 
We will be delivering the quilt tomorrow.  So glad I could finish this off, even though it is after the wedding, I still got it done before the end of the year. 
Now I can start out 2014 with my pile of quilts that "aren't deadline motivated".  
Looking forward to the New Year! 

Sunday, December 29, 2013

96 inches to a finish

I can almost taste it. 
If my fingers hold out, this 97 x 96 wedding quilt will be done before the new year.  

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Prepping for the holidays.....

It's sure been busy here at our house.  Just last weekend we celebrated Jude's christening.  Yes....I got his gown down in time (three days to spare). 
In the meantime, I had my Christmas get together with my mini group, Nancy and Sharon.
Here's a look at their show-n-tell.
Nancy has been working on her yellow and brown basket quilt for some time (it's a work in progress), but she made sure she had some of them together for us so that we could really enjoy them.
She, also, brought this great green and red quilt that she just had quilted recently.  Love the quilting on this one.
Love  her whirligig quilt that she just had quilted, too.  Hope you can see the quilting on this one. It's perfect for this quilt. 
As for Sharon's quilts, she has this great "shirts" quilt made with men's striped shirts. Love it!! and love the quilting on it, too. 

She did this fun zig zag quilt in her gray and yellows that I didn't think she would ever cut up.
....and now she is working on another "shirts" quilt that will be made into some form of either a trips around the world or another zig zag quilt. We will have to wait and see how that all turns out. 
We had a great time getting together for our show-n-tell.  We exchanged some great gifts, too, and one was a promise to get together again up at the farm (Sharon's place ) to sew for a day or two.   Can't wait. 
I did want to share with you that I experimented on them for our luncheon and I think it was a big hit. 
Taco Soup. 
Here is the recipe I used.  It was a quick and easy crock pot meal.
1 lb. ground beef, cooked and drained.
1 can corn
1 can Great Northern Beans (white)
1 can black beans
1 can red beans
1  can diced tomatoes
1 hidden Valley Ranch packet
1 Taco seasoning packet
2 cups water
Tortilla chips
Sour cream
Shredded Cheese.
Combine all ingredients in crock pot except tortilla chips and shredded cheese and sour cream.
**** do not drain any of the cans. Stir and cover with lid.  Cook on low 6 -8 hours. Service with tortilla chips (crumbled on soup), a dollop of sour cream and some shredded cheese.  YUM..
Give it a try.  I think you might like it.  You can make it as spicy or not spicy as you like.  All depends on the temperature of the taco seasoning that you use.  ]
Well, I need to get my final Christmas lists completed.  Hope you are ready for the big day.
Have an enjoyable day!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

What's been keeping me from quilting?........

I allowed my daughter to commit me to making knitting  a christening gown for my new grandson.
I nearly committed myself with all the problems I was having with this knitted project. 
I did finish it on time though.... with three days to spare
I lost count of how many times I ripped this project out and would have just chucked it if it wasn't for that commitment to this little guy.
and his parents.
Thought it was the pattern, but finally had to admit it was me.  Still don't know what I was doing wrong all those times.  I am going to blame it on all those darn yarn overs.  '
All-in-all though, the project turned out just fine and the day was great other than all the snow that decided to visit us last night and today. 
Now, it's back to quilting.  Hope to be posting something new soon.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

Just popping in for a quicky to wish you all a
Happy Thanksgiving. 
Hope you get to spend your day with family and/or friends.
Don't eat too much!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Just took another one off the longarm.....

Just took this one off of Millie Faye.  I did straight line stitching using Pam Clark's 1" stencil with the blue chalk pounce pad that I just purchased. 
You'd think straight stitching would be super easy, but I did have my problems.  Maybe I didn't have it mounted on the machine as square as I thought I did, but hey...it's done and ready to have the binding put on. 
Wedding quilt is next.  I intend to have that one done in less than two weeks and have it to the kids and outta here. 

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Doing some measuring....

Ok, there is no place in this house that I can lay out this whole quilt to get good measurements. 
I am going to have to measure it folded in half (which I haven't done yet), but #1 I did want to make sure I had enough backing fabric; and #2 I don't see any blatant misshapen edges that will need major trimming to get it squared, so maybe my measurements per section have served me well.  
So here is a better look at the left side of this quilt.
close up....
Flipped over to see the right side...
close up....
And here is the backing....a full three widths.
Just ordered some stencils to help me make my straight line quilting along with some chalk and pounce pad; and I am leaning towards an orange-y thread to quilt this one. 
Next time you see this quilt (unless I can find somewhere to lay out the whole thing) will be when it is on the long arm and/or quilted.  Wish me luck. 

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Crazy October and quilts.....

October could not have been busier.
Baby Jude was born to my youngest daughter.

My son was married two weeks later.

So, as you can imagine, between visits to the hospital, staying with my daughter for a week after the baby was born, dinners with out-of-town family/friends prior to and after the wedding, rehearsal dinner, the wedding and throw in a funeral for the bride's grandma who passed away two days before the wedding, I was behind on getting the wedding quilt done.
If you remember, my son and his fiancé had given me a picture of a quilt that they wanted me to replicate.
They chose these fabrics for their quilt (oranges and grays)
Prior to retreat in June, I cut up all of the 11+ yards into strips and while at retreat I stitched all the strips together.  
I made a grid to lay on top of the picture of the original quilt.
and then on a piece of paper, I worked out the sizes for each of the sections for the quilt plus I added one more row to make it a queen-sized quilt.
As I got a section done, I scratched it out.
Tonight I finished the top, but it is so big and the edges should probably be stay-stitched so that my seams don't open up, but for now, it is folded and hung on my sewing room door.
So, this picture just gives you a sneak peek. This is probably just about a quarter of the quilt.
Now I have to say, I have very little fabric left over. 
There's a few loose strips and I have 13 butt end strip sections that I "maybe" could get out 9" cuts that could be used for pillow case edges.  We will see though. 
I will have to do some measuring to make sure my quilt top is square and then I have to piece the backing fabric and once that is done, I am going to put it on the long arm and get this thing quilted.  I am debating whether to use a solid orange of a solid gray for the binding. I may ask the bride for her opinion on this and I am thinking of using an orange thread to quilt straight line stitching to give it an even more modern look. 
So stay tuned.  I am hoping life slows down a bit here but with the holidays coming, I may just have to wait until 2014 to come around. 

Friday, October 11, 2013

Busy, Productive Week.

I look back over the week and amaze myself on what I have accomplished.  I guess when there is a deadline (baby due), I really get motivated. 
I got both hounds tooth quilts quilted and bound.
I made my daughter roman shades for the baby's room.
She still is going to make yellow and white chevron valances to put over the shades; and here is a peek at the adorable tree behind the crib.
Then, last night I finished quilting the "life cycle" quilt and put the binding on it tonight.
(a little tongue in cheek humor)
I should mention, this quilt is a "version" of the Moda Bake Shop quilt.
I still have a few loose threads that need to be sewn in, but I can finally say that I am ready for this baby to be born and my getting my daughter's shades up today should put her mind at ease so that she can finally say the room is ready for the baby, too. 

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Sneak peek.....

Just took #4 off the long arm and this one is another one for the new baby who should be here any day (or minute!). 
If life works out right, I hope to get the binding on this one tomorrow night.  That's all I hope for.  If I have to hand stitch it down while waiting in the hospital, that will be alright with me. 

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Pays to be Square......

I told you on my last post that the second quilt I had done on my long arm gave me some trouble because it was more of a parallelogram rather than square.  Well, I used it for practice so that when I did this quilt for my daughter's soon to be born baby boy, it would turn out better. 
It was loaded a couple nights ago. 
....but I couldn't get to it until today.
It worked up so much easier being square.  LOL....I highly recommend it. :D
Again, I used the popcorn panto with So Fine thread in a medium gray.
I even had the time to put the binding on tonight.
So here is the finished quilt.
It feels so good when something works out well; and I am proud enough of this one to give it as a gift. 
Next....I am not sure if it will be the other baby quilt that I have for her or the Fancy That quilt that will be for me. We'll see which one wins out. 

Friday, October 4, 2013

Wonky = Not too bad

I need practice on the long arm and the best advice I have received is not to work on anything that I am emotional involved with.  Well, that is pretty hard because after making a quilt top, you are usually pretty emotionally attached to that quilt.
So, I took the baby blue hounds tooth which was for some reason pretty wonky.
I don't know if you can tell in this photo, but rather than square it is more of a parallelogram.  I thought I did good by reversing my direction of sewing with each row, but for some reason (maybe all the bias edges) it just wouldn't square up.  I even soaked it in water in hopes of stretching it  and getting it back to square.  All that did was make it wrinkled and difficult to iron out (bias again).
So, today I put it on the long arm.
Just because I knew this was only going to be a practice piece, I still wanted to do the best that I could, so I tried squaring it up on the long arm.  I did the "popcorn" panto on it and all went pretty well.
It's quilted....maybe not perfectly, but it certainly was a good effort and I did manage to square it up more than it was and without any puckers, too.
Well, I couldn't stop there.......
I had to bind it, too, tonight.  Now it is done and a little bit more in the correct shape.  It still has a bit of a "twist" to it, but some baby is going still love it. 
Anyways, I have three more quilts that are lined up for the long arm.  The next one is on  Millie Faye right now.
This hounds tooth is much more square because when I put it together, I put it in blocks rather than rows.  That seemed to help when piecing the top. 
This one is for the new little grandson that will be born.....soon, very soon,......like maybe within a week or so. 
So, you know where I will be tomorrow morning. 

I said I wouldn't......

I meant it when I said it. But I failed and ended up doing it. I picked up the knitting needles instead of getting back to my pile o...