Saturday, August 29, 2015

My Back Story

It has been a long dry week around here.  Dry with not a whole lot of sewing going on. I had a cold thanks to The Finn,  I was trying to use up scraps to make the backing for my table runner, and I was on a reading jag.

I had scraps which I wanted to use up the tiny bits and try to save the larger pieces.  I had 2 1/2 inch strips, squares, 2 1/2 inch squares, and I was just not sure how I would put it together to get big enough for the back of my table runner.
I started sewing the 2 1/2 inch strips kind of like a jelly roll race quilt.

 When I ran out of the 2 1/2 inch strips I started taking the little trimmings and sewing them together.  HST became flying geese.  I ended up with a backing which is kind of wild looking, but used up all of the little pieces.
I still have some large pieces left too.  These are all about layer cake size.  I don't think anything is as large as a fat quarter.
I even managed to get my binding all cut out and put to the side.
Now to get the quilting done.  I found a pattern on Pinterest, and I have been practicing.  Now to execute.  Oh and by the way, the batting I used was all pieced together.  It is all pin basted and ready to go.  DH took a look at it and told me that he prefers my back to the front of the quilt.  : P

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Doing Something

I obviously am doing something... what I don't know, but I haven't been reading many blogs.  I sure haven't been weeding my flower beds, or even doing a whole lot of sewing.  I am going to say that my excuse is that I have been reading quite a bit.  

In between chapters though I have gotten some things accomplished.
I finished up the Basket Case Full of Posies quilt.  Binding, label everything!  I obviously should have taken pictures earlier in the day, but this was one of those days that everyone wanted something, and so we were out the door and running. 

I also finished up my quilt guild challenge quilt.  I am even 2 months early!
I used my little piece of the challenge fabric and had enough to make a narrow single fold binding. 

I also pulled out an old UFO that has been tacked to my bulletin board in my sewing room and worked on it this week.

It ended up being 44 1/2 inches by 20 1/2 inches.  The squares and bars between the stars were from a charm pack I purchase a couple of years ago.  They were from Benartex a line called Nancy's Holiday Favorites.  I love the colors and the whimsical patterns and colors. The centers of the stars are by a line from Maywood which I thought had great colors that matched the other line perfectly.  The pattern was a freebie called Jingle Jolly table runner by Happy Zombie.  If you want the pattern just click here.

These are the scraps I have left.  I think that I am going to make a pieced backing. 
The red I am going to use to make my binding.  I saw a cute quilting pattern on Pinterest recently so I think that I am going to use it to quilt this table runner.  Maybe tomorrow I can get my backing created, and start on the quilting this week. 

Helping the family wasn't all bad.  I came home with these.
Boxes of canning jars.  We always seem to run short when we are canning, so it is great to have more without spending a ton of money. So I guess I have been doing something, it just doesn't seem like it though.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

15 Minutes

We had rain all night long, which meant it was going to be a bit iffy if I was going to sit today or not for the daughter.  I was told 7, then 7:30, then 8.  Since I had been ready to walk out the door to be there by 7:30 I had about 15 minutes to use. 

I have a Christmas table runner all cut out and it has been sitting in baggies on my sewing table for about 3 years now.  I grabbed it the other day and started to figure out what I needed to do to get ready to just sew.  Fortunately I had almost everything cut except for 15- 1 1/2" squares.  I got them cut and marked.  I had actually started to sew on it a wee bit yesterday. 

I had time to press open the seams and put a pin in one intersection and stuff in my project bag. 
Trim the corners and press.
Sew the 3rd corner.
Trim the corner and run the pieces through the machine to put on the 4th corner.
Not too shabby.  OK granted it was only about 8 pieces, but every little bit counts. 

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Distracted Sewing

I have obviously been kind of distracted lately.  Lots of things going on, some good, and some not so great.  Luckily I have had some time to do some mindless sewing which at times helps calm and center.

I quilted my challenge quilt.
I tried doing a spiral, and for some reason was having a tough time, even after watching several videos, and reading a couple of tutorials.  I decided I would call it an organic spiral.  I went slow, tried using my walking foot, that was a bust.  I then decided to use a free motion floating type foot, and I tried to line up with the hash marks.  I still had some weebles, and wobbles. 
I used the Bubble Jet Set, and Bubble Jet Rinse and got my labels for my two quilts ready.

I enjoyed the creative outlet for making the labels this way, but I also enjoy the embroidery at times too.  I love having different options for making my labels.  

Over the weekend I went to Threads of Tradition at Sauder Village, and met cute and very sweet Kris from Kris Loves Fabric and her friend Cheryl.  We went to a hooked rug show, then to Threads of Tradition the village's quilt shop.  All I can say is wow about hooked rugs.  Love them, so many different styles, maybe someday I can make one.  At Threads of Tradition I purchased the kit for the Row by Row.  Kris had visited earlier and gifted me with the laser cut for the quilt row.  A great big thank you Kris!

It is always so great to meet someone who blogs, and you have developed an online friendship.  Unfortunately I did not get a picture of her I know Bad Blogger! 

I will actually have a finish, maybe two to show later on this week. 

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Midweek Ramblings

 I had set aside the weekend to work on my guild challenge project.  After a few mistakes I did get the top pieced..
 It ended up being about 18 inches square. My problem now is that I am at a loss on how to quilt it.  I am not too sure if I should do a stitch in the ditch, or just swirls all over. Maybe a stitch in the ditch around the blocks then matchstick quilting in the white areas. 

I have decided to make my own quilt labels which are a little more involved than the ones I currently use.  I didn't want to do embroidery, nor use the printable fabric which I have, because the pictures kind of look washed out,  so I decided to do a printed label but would try the bubble jet set, and rinse.  I worked on the labels Saturday for a couple of hours.  Now I need to wait for my bubble jet set, and bubble jet set rinse to arrive since I had to order them online. Once they do I can make my labels, and finish the binding on the basket case quilt that I have been hand sewing.
I did wander to the local quilt shop Lake Erie Mercantile, and acquire another row for the row by row.  Lake Erie Mercantile is the closest shop to my guild so several ladies from the guild work there. 
They didn't have the background fabric so the kit was kind of inexpensive.  I figure I can find a cute background fabric in my stash.  

I started on the next block for the BOM for the group I belonged to.

It is a cute block but it was written for someone with an Accuquilt cutter with the drunkard's path templates.  I calculated that my drunkard's path template would work and started cutting, but I got a bit confused when it came to color layout.  I started sketching but I can say I am not sure still about the layout.  I may have to tweak with it some more.
My garden is still inundated with weeds, but it was so nice to see these guys make an appearance, they had a rocky start with all of the rain we had early this summer.  Their nice straight row ended up wibbly wobbly. 
We have had some gray cloudy days, but not much rain.  Of course the day I took this picture we then had torrential downpours for about 1/2 an hour. 
We only had one zucchini which I shredded and turned into zucchini brownies!
Yes there is some sugar in them, but I can actually have one (ok it may only be about 1 1/2 inch square) but it doesn't make my blood sugar out of whack.  DH says they are super yummy so they had to leave the house or he would eat all of them so they went to the kids house for snacks after school. 

Finally I had purchased this little towel rack at an antique store several months back.  It was in need of a new paint job.  DH took it, sand blasted and painted it. 

Love it, it will come in handy to hang up the washed plastic bags from the food saver we use. 

I have had a couple of long days watching the kids, still at an impasse with the little one about potty training.  Because of that I haven't been doing much sewing but have been doing a lot of reading.  It is easier to read a couple of pages, while watching him to make sure there are no accidents than to be sewing.  Maybe once I get the potty thing down, I can start sewing more when I watch him.

Saturday, August 8, 2015

A Binding Tale with Cutting Errors

I had a wee bit of time to get my binding cut, and sewn onto my quilt.  I have been working on the hand sewn part for the past three days. 

 I have 2 huge packages of these little clips.  Want to know what is funny?  I only use 5 at a time.  I hated using them to fold over my binding while I was hand sewing the binding down, only to have them get pulled off accidentally while I was moving the quilt around.  I find that I only need 5 of them.  They hold enough of the binding down that I can sew, and as I reach one, I take it off and move it to the last spot. 

I only have about 1 1/2 sides sewing down of my binding after 2 days.  I have been trying to potty train a very reluctant 2 1/2 year old.  I have never had a problem before, but boy this kid is stubborn!  I resorted to reading potty training articles on the internet on how to potty train a difficult kid.  Not that he doesn't know how to do it, or that he can stay dry, his is plain old defiance.  He will sit for 5 minutes, whining and crying the whole time, get up, walk across the room and wet on the floor.  Lets just say this grandma is just as stubborn as he is (obviously he came by it honestly)!

I finally started working on my quilt guild challenge  Now it isn't like I didn't make an example to make sure my measurements were correct, it is just anytime I create something I am always afraid I am going to make a gigantic mistake and waste a bunch of fabric.  I did know that I wanted the background fabric to run up and down the quilt.  So I carefully cut out all my parts, laid them out, figured out how to make it so all of my HST were going the right way. 
Started to sew them together.  Dagnabbit!  I still had 4 blocks sections which were wrong.
Now when you can only find 1 yard of a fabric, you are pretty tough on yourself when you make the mistake, even though you only wasted about a 3 X 6 inch piece of fabric.  Aaarrrrrrgh!

Now to start cutting on the challenge fabric.  I really do not want to mess this one up either.  A fat quarter doesn't go very far, and I am not too sure where I could find more of this ugly fabric. 

I am glad that I have the challenge quilt almost all put together.  It will be nice to have something done which has a deadline, before the day before the deadline. 

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Radiating Sparkler Flop

I started working on this block Sunday night.  It is called Radiating Sparklers, and it was the block I chose for an online quilt group that I participate in for a BOM. 

 This is as far as I got when I called it a night last night. 

We had storms forecasted for Sunday evening and early Monday morning.  We got a wee bit of the storm,but not as much as the upper mitten part of Michigan received.  So I didn't have to be at the kid's house until 8 am.  I worked a bit more on the block.

This evening when I got home I finished it up.  After making several mistakes.  Mistakes that made it so that I had to recut 2 sets of squares to finish up the block. 

I have a couple of projects that I needed some background fabric.  I wanted some of Lizzie House's mini pearl bracelets in the white on white.  Before we left for vacation I found it, and had a super coupon so I purchased it for less than $8 per yard.

I also had an inkling for a certain look for my guild challenge.  Of course I decided I wanted something which is not easy to locate.  I got lucky and found some Allison Glass Bike Path white on white on Etsy so now I can start on my guild challenge quilt. 

I got my ends all tied into my quilt.  I found fabric.  Now I need to measure the quilt and cut binding.  Maybe that will be finished this week.

Monday, August 3, 2015

Weekend Grind

My daughter called Friday, she wasn't feeling well so she was not going to go to work.  That meant that I had a three day weekend.

Friday I finished a pillowcase for a birthday gift for the grand daughter.
Love the Hello Kitty skeleton.  I had purchased two of these fabrics while on vacation.  I wanted a dark purple to match the bows on skeleton kitty.  I looked at Dh and told him I needed to go to the fabric store.  He asked don't you  have any fabric that you can use in that room?  I told him no, and he just shook his head.  I was getting ready to go out when the youngest daughter called.  She needed to have her oil change, which meant that there would be kids running around the house, so my trip was cancelled.  I showed DH black, and he wasn't really thrilled with it, but it kind of grew on me, so no trip to the fabric store.

I also started working on one of the Row by Rows which I purchased in Wyoming.
This row was from The Quilter's Fix in Sheridan, Wyoming.  I read the directions and started cutting.  I love how the row went together, and the colors.
But you trimmed a lot off.
This was my finished row which I completed on Saturday.
I actually pulled one fabric out of my stash to use for the center square.  We spent the majority of the day grocery shopping, running errands and spending time with the MIL.  I did wander to a quilt shop called Bits & Pieces in Wayne, Michigan.

Sunday was warmer than they said it was going to be.  I decided to pull out some UFO's to work on.

I have this double wedding ring kit which I had problems sewing together.  I watched a couple of videos and I used the tips.

I measured to double check that my seams were a scant 1/4 inch.  I got one melon put together.  I saved the videos so I know where to go when I am ready to work on it some more.

I then pulled out an old BOM that I had put aside.
I loved the quilt, but the directions were not my favorite.  I do not like when you have to cut 5/8 inch or 7/8 inch portions of blocks.  I spent most of the day cutting and sewing just this small section which was step 7 of the blocks.
I then decided that it was time to pull out my quilt that I finished  quilting last month, and trim and square up.

I have threads to bury, and have to figure out how to fix a few skipped stitches, but at least it is squared up and trimmed.

I then decided to pull out my BOM from my online quilting group and make the block that I had chosen.  Oh boy what a doozy.  It is called radiating sparkler.  It took me a while to decipher the pattern, and then get it cut.
This is as far as I got before I decided it was time to stop for the night.  Hopefully I can continue getting things accomplished during the week too.