Thursday, May 29, 2014

Prep Work

When I don't have a lot of time to sew or in the evening while sitting with DH while he watches TV, sometimes I try to do some prep work for what I want to work on.

I tore apart my connector block which I did not like so that I would not have an orphan block hanging around, and resewed it using the new green which I like a whole lot better.
 I think it plays better with my batik scrappy blocks.
And because I did that I have bonus squares.
I also worked on some templates for a block for the My Quilt Place Designer Batik Quilt group it is called Spinning Stars and you can find the block here.

I made my templates but looking at the page which was provided it just did not look right.  What do you think are there 3 or 4 triangles?

For some reason I think it is 4 but someone else insists that it is only 3. I guess I will just have to bite the bullet and start cutting and sewing.  Ugh!

I finished up all my ancient flying geese from a quilt I had planned on making years ago.
Now what to do with them?  I only have about 200 total. 

I took a stroll around my garden early this morning.
I have my little pink pompom/Dr Seuss looking flowers coming up. 
The bi-color butterfly bush is blooming.
I have a volunteer pansy.  I love pansies and this one is so sweet.

I also ordered another plant a Weigela.  I bought it off of Ebay and with shipping and handling it was still cheaper than anywhere around here.

Finally we all know what Geraniums are but have you ever had wild geraniums?
They have these lovely light lavender or pink flowers.  But OH beware they are invasive.  This is one I am letting hang out in my flower bed until I have something to take its place but I keep a sure eye on it.

A little prep work goes a long way, and it helps keep me moving.  Kind of like how I am a dabbler.  I will do a little housework, or pull a few weeds in the garden here and there.  I just hate to tackle a huge job head on and keep with it but sure and steady still gets it done.

Have a marvelous, hopefully sunny day!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Design Inspiration

I am pretty satisfied with my sewing room and how the stash is organized.  I still have some folding to do and then probably another bout of cutting into the scrap system but overall it isn't too bad.  And I have enough room that I am going to work on getting my batiks into my stash in their own special spot so they too will be easier to use.

 My scrap stash is all labeled and organized and easy to access too.

This is my partial pile of batiks.  Part of it is setting on my ironing board getting folded.
The other part I am digging through trying to kind of match these colors for a quilt.  I tried printing it out on photo paper but I didn't like the color because it was not the same as what it was on the computer.

This is my selection.  I am not too sure about the grays though.  I dug through my stash but didn't find anything that would fit. 

I did manage to get my monkey wrench block made for the My Quilt Place Block of the month we are doing in the Designer Batik group.
Even though the greens are a bit different than the last couple I used I think it will work.
I need to throw together a couple of connector blocks to see if it helps tie it together better.
Here is a picture of my Columbine.  I also have some purple ones.
Their faces doe not point outwards like the pink ones, but they bow their heads looking toward the ground. 

I love design seeds it is a great place to get color inspiration sometimes.  Where do you get your color inspiration?

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Oh Scrap!

I knew Friday was going to be busy.  My first day off since last Sunday and free day in about two weeks to do what I wanted to do.

My thoughts?  Watch my Netflix movie, sand and wax my shelf for my sewing room, maybe some more fabric folding, feed store to get the fatties some food, to the bank to pay a bill (they no longer accept online payments), the grocery store, some house cleaning and cooking.

Thursday when I got home from work instead of napping, I started folding, and folded, and folded, and folded until almost 10 PM.  I still have quite the pile to get through, but I am starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel.  While I folded, DH prepped the wall in the dining room. 

DH had a different idea for Friday.  He decided to take the day off.  We hit the ground running that morning.  DH had to mow the fields which meant he had to attach the brush hog to the tractor.  Me?  I raided the barn, sanded my shelf, and waxed.  I am loving how it turned out. I tried several different DIY chalk paint recipes and found one I love. 

We then went to the feed store, the bank, the credit union, Michael's, the lumber yard, home to unload, and back to the grocery store.  When we got home, I put groceries away, DH sanded the dining room wall, then swept. 

DH went outside to finish out the decking on the back porch, we were short 1 1/2 boards from last year.  LOL  While he was working on that, I washed the wall down, and started cutting in with primer.

DH then went to work on the Chicken Palace to make a gate/door and enclose it with chicken wire.  Me?  I continued to paint. Finished priming the walls.  By then it was 8 PM.

I stopped threw steaks on the grill and made steak salad with an herb and cheese dressing, with blue cheese crumbles.  It was fabulous and not too heavy.

I then went back into the sewing room. We reconfigured all of the wire racking I have. You can see that picture above

There are two big totes in my sewing room.  One green, one clear.  The clear has all Christmas fabrics in it.  The green one I was not too sure what was in there.  I opened it and all I could think of is Oh SCRAP! More scraps to cut, iron and fold.  Whining to myself, I am thinking I was almost there. 

Have a wonderful holiday weekend!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Stash Must Haves

I know all I talk about is cleaning up my stash which is probably getting really boring. 

I explained that I was pretty astounded at the amount of fabric which I have and I am still folding.

This is one box full of fat quarters.  These are Pam Kitty fabrics by Lake House or Riley Blake Fabrics.  As you can see I have exceeded the bin size even.

See how much easier it is to see what I have?  I still am folding and wrapping, and adding pieces to the scrap bucket to be cut up.  I decided that I wanted to keep my polka dots and ginghams together but everything else is pretty much separated by color.

I have lots of beautiful fabrics but there are a couple of things which I am missing.  I am missing some really great yellow fabrics.  They seem to be hard to come by for some reason.  Also considering that I love red I don't have much red either. 

On another note today I worked quite a ways from home, and so I decided to check out a quilt shop.

They had some great black on whites as well as some really cute fabrics on sale.

I also found a couple of greens to try to make my connecting block for my BOM from My Quilt place.

This was my original connector block.  Not really loving the green, and still not too sure about the orange.

I think this lime green may be more friendly, even though I still would love to keep the orange I am using.

Tomorrow I hope to get my new shelf sanded and waxed so that we can install it and the fat quarters and the smaller folds can be put away, maybe then I can sew and enjoy the process more. 

When you look at your stash what color do you think you could use?

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Ode to Fabric Folding 2

Just a quick post.  I mentioned I threw all of my fabric on the floor and began folding about a week ago.

In the meantime we have moved a washer from the MIL's basement to the youngest daughter's house, did a lot of work around our house and yard, as well as the families yards, and I have been working lots of very early morning shifts which caught up with me and I now have a bit of a summer cold. 

I was a bit chagrined when I ran out of comic book boards yesterday while folding.  What does that mean exactly?  Well every piece of fabric bigger than 1/2 yard has been folded on a comic book board. The boards come in packs of 100 so that means I have well over 50 + yards of fabric and I still had large pieces of yardage to fold.  I ordered 2 more sets of comic book boards online and then thought, maybe there is a comic book store nearby that has boards.  Yessss! There is an it is cheaper so I purchased the boards and started folding again.
 This is what my folded fabric is looking like. 
I started out separating by color. 
Like the grays,
Aquas, turquoise and teals,

black tone on tones, and white on black. 
Then I thought maybe I should keep certain themes together like polka dots, and ginghams. 
The fifth shelf down has fabrics which are less than 1/2 but bigger than a fat quarter.  I have been sorting those by color.
I am also getting much better at fat quarter folding.  I am getting more consistent which will help when I get my shelf finished and installed. 

I am also discovering lots of bits and pieces which will need to be put into my scrap system so my scrap pile is building up quickly.

On a different note.  It appears that summer has finally arrived and with it so has mosquito season.  Around our home it is terrible, to the point it sounds like we are getting dive bombed by WWII planes.  We spray/fog around our home, the kids play structure, the gardens, and the orchard.  But since these guys are so little we decided that they needed to come into the house for an hour or so while we were fogging.

They are getting to that adolescent stage where they are not so cute.  They are developing their tail and wing feathers and are just kind of awkward looking.  But all is well and they are back in their Chicken palace for the night with a new light, and a new bigger feeder so that maybe the fatties will not have to be fed twice a day. 

I am getting antsy to sew but I am also really thrilled at all the treasures that I have found while folding. 

Monday, May 19, 2014

Fabric Folding

I was folding fabric, and folding, and folding and running out of space.  I finally decided to bite the bullet and just pull everything off the shelves, and the wire rack so that the room could be rearranged.

I stacked fabric in my chair.
On my sewing table.
On my cutting table.
And on the floor.
Because I was running out of space to put what had been folded already
and I wanted to move the shelf. That way I could put the fabric which is folded away finally. 
From this corner to a bit more accessible spot which was by the closet.  The closet door was removed so that the closet was more accessible.  The closet has some very large pieces of fabric, packages and rolls of batting, ribbon, a couple of  flimsies, and sewing machine cases.  The closet is not very big. 
The top shelf of the bookcase will hold larger pieces which are wrapped around comic book boards.  These pieces are are bigger than 1/2 yard.  The 2nd shelf has charm packs, fat quarter bundles, and jelly rolls.  The next shelf will hold more large pieces of fabric which will be shorted by color eventually. 
The next couple of shelves will hold folded half yard cuts.  Right now they are being stacked by color.  The bottom shelf has a serger, and fabric for 3 specific projects.
I started folding the fat quarters so that I should be able to get 3 rows in each box.  I have a lot of fat quarters to fold! I got the final coat of pain on my new cabinet, it needs a sanding and a some wax but hopefully we get it in the house soon then the fat quarters can get stored there.  I will work on this when I have some free time this week and hopefully get it under control so that I can do some sewing soon. 

Sunday, May 18, 2014

What's Bloomin'?

Some days when I have time I write a bunch of posts at once and then schedule them throughout the week.  Friday while I was feeling like I was foundering.  I started to write, then would run out and take some pictures, then write some more. 

I promised here to explain about the buckets in the garden.
Before planting
 Tomatoes don't really need water on their leaves they need water at their roots.  In theory a sprinkler while it distributes water usually hits the leaves, knocks off tomato blossoms and causes black spot.  A 5 gallon bucket with holes drilled in the side and bottom buried about 1/2-2/3 of the depth, and the tomatoes planted about 8-12 inches away is a more efficient method for watering.  When you water you fill the buckets as far as you can, and the holes in the bucket will water the roots of the tomatoes instead of all the surrounding garden, thereby being more efficient. Believe it or not these tomatoes already have a few blossoms!
My apple tree has blossoms which I think are just too precious!
Wow I need to weed, and till my orchard and most definitely mulch!
My sprawling strawberry patch and blossoms
 Again more weeding necesssary!
Prairie Fire Crab Apple it is just loaded with blooms

Flowering Almond love the profusion of pink blossoms

Bleeding heart love the sweet little dangling hearts
Lilac from the large row of lilacs along the road
I am just thrilled with how well my plants are growing and everything is blooming and smells so good.  We will have to thin out the Lilacs after they finish blooming.  They have been there for years, DH hates them but I pointed out that they actually help cut down the road noise and if we remove them we are just going to be bombarded with more noise than we already are.  I think they all just need some management to become better looking. 

Anything blooming at your place?