Monday, June 26, 2017

Playing Catch Up

Sometimes I succumb to peer pressure and I join a QAL or SAL, but lately the few that I have joined have kind of languished hiding under tables, in bins, in ziploc bags, shopping bags--patterns sitting on the printer, you get the picture. 

Sunday I decided to pull out my farm girl book, blocks, and fabric stash and started cutting.  I lost track of how many blocks I cut out Sunday, so that when I was ready to sew I could just go. 

Today I decided to sew.
I made the 12 1/2 inch Kettle's on block.

I also made the 6 1/2 inch churn dash block. 

I actually have a plan worked out on how I am going to construct this quilt.  I have a lot more blocks to make. 

Recently I went way out of my comfort zone and signed up for a class to make a Quiltworx pattern.  Why is it outside of my comfort zone? 

1.  I am taking a class with people I do no know, yes hard to believe, but I am very shy. The teacher had been a special speaker at my guild and when she discovered that I had signed up for the class she sat me next to a great group of women. 
2.  I am not a paper piecer!  I always struggle, but in order to make this gorgeous pattern you are going to have to paper piece to get those spectacular points. 

I went to the first class in June, and discovered that I am a----Slow Stitcher!!!  During class most of the women had all of their parts from the first step finished after 6 hours.  Me I had 2 portions completed out of 8, and had started to chain pieces the remaining 6 pieces, but was not finished at the end of class.  I pulled it out and finished these up this morning. 

I have some pieces to cut so I am ready for the next class in a couple of weeks.  So far I am feeling pretty confident, I think I may be able to make a pattern that I purchased years ago.  The pattern is called Sand Devils.

I actually finished something too!  I had bought a pattern which used a side kick ruler.  I bought the fabric then wondered, what if this doesn't work well?  So I used a handful of 2 1/2 inch strips, and a yellow fairy frost scrap and made this pattern called Rock Candy, a table topper which uses the side kick ruler.  I will say that the pattern instructions were great, and I can't wait to work on the next quilt.

I quilted it just doing simple arcs from point to point within each diamond.  I do probably need to put a label on it, but hey it is done!  Also gave me an opportunity to use my new quilting machine.

I also made a small contribution to the quilting economy.

Seriously who can resist a stack of gorgeous fabrics, many printed on white in a rainbow array? 

I have lots of  projects that I have started in the past to keep me busy.  I have farm girl blocks cut out and ready to sew, I have a couple of dog beds that need to be sewn close, I have an Ocean Waves quilt, a bag lady block for guild, and lots of flimsies to be quilted. 

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Making Progress

I feel like have made a bit of progress the past couple of weeks.

 The pool is up and running--between Samantha and I we managed to get the pool apart, with a little man muscle from her SO---he helped get the old liner out, and the new in, but between her and I we managed to get it from start of take down to completely reassembled and filling within less than 5 hours.  We were laughing and giggling especially considering how much Jeff had struggled to put it together last year.  I even managed to figure out the filter and pump.  I am learning what chemicals to put in and when also. 

The small pond that we were working on in the side yard was completed.  I need to put a mosquito dunk in it to prevent the lovely little blood suckers, and also probably some sort of algaecide to keep it from turning too green.  All of the rocks were reclaimed from throughout the property.  I do need a few more big rocks and some more small river rocks, but it is so very relaxing listening to the fountain.

I still have a berry patch to clean up, and lots of weeding to do again, as well as a rain barrel to set up to prevent the storm drain from washing out our pool footing, but a little bit each day. 

It has been too hot for Lucy to be in and out into the sun room, and as anyone who has ever owned a cat knows, that a cat feels like you should hold the door open interminably for them while they decide if they want to be in or out.  I took some of the cut off discards from Jeff's t-shirts and made her a small pillow so she could be on top of this small set of plastic drawers to look outside.

I made some economy blocks to do another one of Jeff's t-shirts. 

I then started to make churn dashes.

For another shirt.
I tried doing a rail fence, but doing small ones seems to be a challenge for me. When it was all said and done I thought it looked quite wonky.  But I refuse to take it apart one more time!

I have another idea for my next shirt, but before starting on that I thought I should get the guild friendship block done.

I also settled down enough to try to work on my quilting machine.  I figured out how to set the tension depending on the needle and thread that I am using. 

I finished up quilting this table topper.  I think the pattern is called Rock Candy, I made it from a bunch of 2 1/2 inch strips, and a yellow fairy frost so I could test out the side kick ruler before I started a bigger project.    I even have my binding made, so I just need to sew it on. 

I have bought a few things.  I got a sweet package from Donna's Lavender Nest.  I love the yellow daisies on the green plaid and had ordered a fat quarter previous, so ordered some more.  It works great in Jeff's t-shirt quilt.  I always receive a couple of charm squares which are always too cute. 

I also saw this super cute kit, and had to have it.  Love the flag, and the snowman.  Especially when we have days that it is 90 degrees by 10 am.  I know, soon I will be complaining about how cold it is.  But right now, it reminds me that winter is coming and these sweltering days will be gone soon.

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Anti String Piecing

I have so much to do, and there are times I just kind of stall. Or I forget what I am doing. 

The friendship block of the month for guild was a string star.  Let's just say maybe I should have foundation pieced instead of just building on the white and black.

I was supposed to add blues and purples.  I don't have a lot of purple in my stash so it was tough.  I will also say that I took this block apart probably 50 times trying to get everything right.  Obviously string piecing is not my forte.

The bag lady block was a wee bit easier.

Ghastlies fabric.  Isn't it fun! 

I did another t-shirt for Jeff's t-shirt quilt.
I had bought some charm squares years ago, and discovered they were not 5 inch squares, they were 4 inch squares.  They came in handy for this.  While this is not a John Deere shirt, it is a shirt that Jeff had when he belonged to the 2 cylinder club.  It was a group that restored antique John Deere Tractors, it was something he absolutely loved. 

Of course I had some fabric acquisitions that arrived.  Darn Memorial Day sales!

Some greens, and yellows for my Saw Toothed Square block, and some text fabric. 
And some more chicken fabric.

Then I took a short jaunt to Pink Castle Fabrics to pick up an order of Blueberry Park which is low volume.

Then I looked through their sale bins and found some more treasures.

I love text prints, and I just adored the red flowered fabric, but they only had 3 fat eighths. 

I spent a lot of time cutting squares and strips Saturday, and tumblers. 

I worked on the pool this weekend.  I can't quite figure out the filter, and pump and how it all works together.  I have looked up different schematics.  Tomorrow Lucy goes to the vet, then afterwards I will hit the pool store again.  Hopefully I can get this beast going soon, before the summer is over.