Thursday, January 17, 2019

Y not??

My friend Claire is chairing the local guild's show coming up next month.  You know that she is super-creative.  She made up a pattern for the challenge at the show, based on Why quilt... or Y...  I love what she did! She was sewing down the binding at my house yesterday so we had lots of time to catch up.  Isn't this cute??

I may have twisted her  arm a bit but she and I are going to go to the Vermont Quilt show in June!! WOOHOO.  We are in the planning stages so I welcome any suggestions.  We are going to go for a whole week and plan to tour around the area...

I don't know what got into me last night but I decided to organize my light scrap basket.  It was OVERFLOWING and I couldn't find anything.  You can see its dark partner, equally chaotic and untouched as of now.  Not done yet but I'm happy with the results.

My progress so far:

I know many people organize their scraps into sizes of strips (I do have a huge tupperware container filled with 2-1/2" strips in the closet) but I'm just not that organized.  So I separated the really thin strips from the wider ones from the small scraps from the triangles.  Impressive, don't you think?? JK...

I've also been working on my other January Mini, which is almost done.  I'm almost gleeful with it and can't wait to show it to you.  Let's just say that I've taken mini to an entirely new level!

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Mini from Pam Buda

My friend and cohort, Wendy Reed (constantquilter), challenged me to make one project a month from Pam Buda's new Vintage Patchwork book.  Wendy followed all the instructions for cutting in advance;  I'm not so organized.

I cut out the pieces just for this one butI feel like it still turned out ok.  Cute pattern, don't you think?

It's not very large so it went together pretty quickly;  also I used my first ever single-fold binding, following instructions on YouTube -- ;-)).  I was happy with how well it went on, as well.  Now if I could just improve on my machine quilting skills!

Next up:  the other mini for the month of January... Trying to start the year off on the right foot and not fall behind (although I am terribly behind on my Moda Blockheads II...).

Hope you're having a productive January as well!

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Lucky ducky and inspiration galore

I neglected to tell you how lucky I recently was--- I WON a new book that was being given away by Barbara Brackman!! I wish I could say that my victory reflected great character or decisiveness but it didn't... I was the LAST one to comment and that's how I won. ;-))  I'll take it...  Thanks to Barbara Brackman for her generosity.  I already love it!

I went yesterday to the little quilt group I recently joined, which makes quilts for kids.  Here were some finished projects, which I think are great!  I also really loved the quilting. You can't tell but the "road" was actually pieced.  it is adorable.  

I loved this last one's pattern and its maker had the pattern with her so I borrowed it.  I think it'll look great in brights!

Sunday, January 6, 2019

Signs of spring indoors

As I write this, it's been pouring down rain for a few days.  Welcome weather, let me tell you!  Northern California has been drought-sticken for way too long.

One of the projects I'm going to do this year is the Céçile and Béa quiltalong.  This year they are doing flowers.  Lots of flowers.

Rather than appliqué, I decided to paper-piece my lovelies.  I started with an old old book of patterns and am using my Kaffe Fassett scraps from my tuffett!  There are other fabrics thrown in as well but the idea is the same:  BRIGHTS

My November mini was completed, at last.  Hand quilted the whole thing!  Do I get a star, Wendy Reed (constantquilter)??  This was a top I started years ago and I'm happy to have it completed.  I will say that I did enjoy the hand-quilting but am sad to report that my Signature quilting thread was faded on the outside from lack of use!  ;-)

My December mini was the swap I did with Wendy, using the Kim Diehl pattern.  So I finished the year having made 12 minis!

What's up for this year?  I'm going to do the minis again and made something from the Vintage Patchwork book.  Not sure what else.  Do you have lots of plans for the year??

Now I have a question for you:  how do you hang your quilts?  My minis are on the wall with tacks.  My bigger quilts, however, are frequently hung inartfully.  I'm very curious to hear your methods for hanging quilts...

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

The Big Reveal

I promised to share my version of the Kim Diehl pattern that Wendy Reed (constantquilter) and I swapped once she received it.  Well, much to my surprise, the post office delivered it likitty split (spelling??).

Here is mine!  

Here's a close-up of the center.  You see my imperfections more easily-- the strip across the vase is crooked!  And one of my stars isn't close enough to the trunk.  I also ran out of the orange thread while in New Zealand and had to substitute something else!  I notice all these things AFTER they're sewn down and I figured I like my projects to look handmade (=imperfect!)...  I also had a heck of a time with the machine quilting.. machine issues, operator error until finally my trusty Bernina 1130 was called into action and performed beautifully.  For some reason my Juki wasn't behaving.

Since I received Wendy's before I finished mine, I was able to photograph the two pieces side by side.  I did wait until mine was done before I opened hers so here you go!  I love what she did;  and don't believe a word of what she says about her limited ability to sew down wool... her buttonhole is fabulous!  And the threads all match!! HEEHEE!!  Mine was a bit of a hodge-podge and I love variegated threads. So there you are.

I eliminated the very large leaves used at the end of the stems and substituted various flowers;  I also embroidered french knots on a few and did embroidery on some leaves and the tulip, to jazz them up.

This was a great project to undertake with two people doing the same pattern but interpreting the pattern to our own tastes.  I think I'd love to do this again and will be looking for another victim partner to join me.  Any interest?  This one turned out to be much more work than I anticipated so next time I'd do something smaller and less intricate.

We are back in California tonight with much trepidation.  I left Oregon with my mom in great turmoil over her move to the memory care facility on Friday;  I also have a brother who hasn't been very involved in her care but feels the need to muck things up so that's been a bit stressful.

Also, I haven't mentioned this but our 30 yr old son decided to pursue a dream of his and is joining the Marine reserves officer training for the next 18 months.  He is leaving on Saturday for Quantico, VA for bootcamp and then who-knows-where for the rest of the time.  Sadly our daughter in law is taking little Eli to Germany for the next 3 months while Ben is in bootcamp... and, imagine this:  she is not allowing me to come visit.  GASP!~!!   How will I survive??  Seriously, it's quite an undertaking and we are very proud of our son's determination while at the same time, sad to see him go.  He's very excited to be a Marine, and I can't fault that!   I'll keep you posted.

I am truly heartfelt at what a wonderful group of bloggers I've met and I wish everyone a very healthy, successful, and happy 2019!

Much love,

Monday, December 31, 2018

A great finish to 2018

I think I become more nostalgic at the end of each year than at any time in the year.  This was a tough year for our family, with my mom's declining health and her move to the assisted living facility.  Sadly, she is going to progress to the memory care portion of the facility this week, on her 91st birthday!  

We've had the chance to spend time with our grandkids up at the cabin although there hasn't been a lot of snow.  That didn't stop them!

I grew up in NY and played in the snow as a kid so I do remember how much fun it is.  Right now, they are all bundling up to go shovel the little bit of new snow we got last night.  It's just adorable.

On the sewing front, my November mini is almost done.  I've even been hand quilting it...I made this little top years ago so it's nice to get it finished.

Speaking of finishing old ufos, I pulled out this kids quilt and put the binding on this week.  It's been waiting for the binding for at least a couple of years.  

My oldest grandson likes to sew with me so this week we've spent some time in the sewing room.  I showed him how to string piece!

He enjoys mostly sewing charm squares together, so he kept busy and I worked on a few of the Moda Blockheads II project that I've fallen behind on.

Here is the crew hard at work with their shovels and winter gear!

I wish everyone a wonderful end of 2018 and great things for 2019!

Friday, December 28, 2018

Fabulous swap received

I think I told you some time ago that Wendy Reed  (constantquilter) and I were doing a little challenge.  I chose a pattern by Kim Diehl and we were both going to make one and swap them.  Wendy wanted to try her wool applique skills out again;  I thought the pattern was going to be fun.

Well, I finally finished mine this week and just mailed it out.  I won't be showing a picture until Wendy gets mine in the mail.  But once mine was finished, I felt it was the right time to open up Wendy's package. (I had resisted the temptation to see what she made until I finished mine!)

WOW!  I feel so lucky that Wendy did this swap with me.  She does such beautiful work!

You can't see the beautiful wool appliqué work that she did in this picture but it's just fabulous.  You can see a sliver of mine next to it;  I took a picture of them side by side!  Once she gets mine, I'll post a picture of them together and you can see the difference!  We both modified the pattern a little, which makes it even more interesting.  Thank you, Wendy.  I love it!!  I love the colors!  I love the design!  The quilting is wonderful (of course she did a little hand-quilting!)

I also want to show you the top I finally finished recently.  This was a Primitive Gatherings summer sew-along.  I absolutely love it.  I especially love that some of my houses are STILL crooked! ;-)  I'm going to need to quilt it myself although I don't think it needs much quilting. Isn't this just a fun top?

Now that I finished my swap, I will have the time to work on other projects.  We have been at the cabin in Oregon since mid-December and have had grandkids and kids so I've had little to no time to sew---which is just perfect for me!  This is little Eli helping my husband shovel the driveway!

My daughter and her 3 kids are arriving today!  We feel so lucky that we get to enjoy the kids in our cabin!

Hope everyone had a great Christmas...