Monday, February 29, 2016

What was I thinking?

155 blue HST
What was I thinking?  The design looks great on paper, but 350, 2" finished HST squares now seems like a bit much!.    I made 310 of them 18 at a time using a "sew on the marked lines and cut apart" triangle paper method, so that went pretty quickly.  It gave me 18 of each color combination, but spread over 310 I figured it would still look scrappy.  I made the other 40 two at a time because I wanted variety in the colors and color combos.

They are all ready but now I need to sew them all together and that's where things are slowing down!  First, random is hard.  To ensure I spread the 18 duplicates of each HST square more or less randomly around the quilt, I divided the 350 into piles of 10 for my 35 blocks.  I thought I would chain sew...but then I lose track of what belongs in which block.  I might just give up on keeping track when I get to the blocks that only have blue units and start chain sewing with abandon.  Right now I'm sewing one block at a time to make sure the colors are positioned properly, so it's slow going.

Piles of units waiting their turns
I have 4 blocks done so far.  I'm grinding my teeth a little because I measure at each step, and everything is perfect until I add those large corner triangles.  At that point the block seems to miraculously (and frustratingly!) shrink by about 1/8" in one direction.  Now I'm trying to starch everything stiff and see if that helps.

At least I can see something pretty start to take shape as I grind my teeth!

Friday, February 26, 2016

Now I love it!

That didn't take long!  I dropped off my yellow quilt with Liz Meimann of A Quilted Memory on Wednesday around noon.  This morning there was an email waiting for me telling me that the quilt was ready!  I almost squealed when I saw it.  I did do a little happy dance.


Rosie approved

Look at that quilting!  It would have taken me two years, not two days to acheive that, but this is exactly what this top needed.  I had asked for feathers in the border and setting triangles, treating them as one unit,  and something swirly in the rest.  The design we had settled on didn't work so Liz chose something else she thought matched the effect I was trying to acheive, and she chose perfectly!

You can see I still need to trim it and bind it, but I couldn't wait to share.

Off I go to finish other things, things that have deadlines, so that I can then trim and bind this so I can use it!

Monday, February 22, 2016

Very yellow

What happens when you use lots of yellow (OK, all yellow) for a quilt background?  You get a very yellow quilt.

That's my latest "Well DUH!" moment.  I put the finished top on the bed and said "Oh my, that's a lot of yellow!" Don't ask me what I thought it would be.  Maybe I thought the gray sashing and black stars would tone it all down.  Perhaps I was more excited about yellow when I started this a year ago.  The pieces have been in a box for most of the last 10 months.  That's plenty of time for my colour mood to change, apparently!

It's hard to see from this picture, but there are actually several different yellows in there to add a little interest.  At least that was the plan.  Now I just see plain old yellow!

It's too big for me to quilt in my tiny corner, so I'm sending it off to a long armer on Wednesday.  I've never sent a quilt out for quilting before, and I'm having a bit of trouble letting go of the control that comes from doing it all myself, but I have accepted that this is the only way this quilt will be finished.  Hopefully the quilting will make me fall in love with this again.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Flurry of finishes

I just put the last stitches in the binding of my snowflake treeskirt, and the pile of projects waiting to be quilted has officially diappeared.  That isn't to say there isn't binding sitting around waiting for a quilt in progress.  Those quilts in progress just aren't ready for binding yet.

So, here's what I put binding on this past month, besides my son's quilt and the Minions I showed last time.

This is a poor picture.  That's what I get for trying to have a photo shoot at 10 pm.  I'll try to take better ones during daylight hours and share again!  I wish I had finished in time to take pictures outside on lovely fresh snow.  After the past couple of days I would be taking pictures in lovely squishy mud!

The treeskirt pattern will be ready by the end of next week (hopefully sooner) and I'd like to have it tested.  There are two sizes for each design.  Let me know if you're interested in making one in the next month or so!

Saturday, February 13, 2016


I've crossed off a few things from the quilty "to do" list I posted last time, but I couldn't cross this off because I forgot to include it in the list.  I finished binding the Minions quilt. 

My version of the Minions quilt from Quiltmaker's October 2015 issue

I finished the top in early December, but wasn't sure how I wanted to quilt it.  I thought about outlining all the detail in the panel, but honestly, this isn't a quilt I wanted to devote that much work to!  I considered all over swirls, and those almost won, but then I thought of circles.  Concentric circles like targets seemed appropriate for Minions somehow, one target on each Minion.  I filled in the rest of the space in the panel with a large cross hatch, stitched in the ditch around the plain borders, and outline quilted the patches in the pieced border.

Daughter is pleased, and watched a movie last night to curl up on the couch and break it in.  She isn't the only one to stake a claim though!

If anyone knows how to stop Blogger from looading pics sideways, please share!

And here is the quilt in its natural state and habitat.  It is very rarely draped artistically over anything!

Again, loaded sideways.  Sigh!


On a totally unrelated topic: have you visited Sandra's blog Musings of a Menopausal Melon recently?  She is co-hosting a blog hop about all things Craftsy (yes Craftsy, not crafty). Pop over here for a list of links to bloggers who are reviewing all sorts of goodies (classes, fabric, kits, patterns) available on  They just might convince me to buy some of the classes I've been looking at but hesitating to buy.  There are prizes too!  Start hopping to enter the giveway!

Monday, February 8, 2016

Only 2 years in the making!

It's finished!  It's done! Happy dance!  It. Is. Finished!!!

I sewed the first seam in this one on February 10th, 2014, and I took the last stitch in the binding on February 1st, 2016.  I would have celebrated here earlier, but nobody was available during daylight hours to hold it up for a picture until today.  Hmm, and looking at it now, I think I forgot to turn the flash off and it washed out the colors.

Here it is on the bed.  Note the model, who approved the quilt and assumed the photo shoot included her. Given a choice of anything to lie on, Rosie will settle down on the quilt every time.

Most of the 2 year delay in finishing was due to hand quilting.  First, I'm slow.  Second, summers are too hot for me to want to sit with a quilt bunched in my lap so there's no hand quilting happening for at least 4 months a year.  Third, I had a couple of inconvenient bouts of tendonitis that curtailed the hand work for a while.  Fourth, I sometimes I feel like hand quilting, and sometimes I don't, so it isn't a continuous process in this house!

This quilt is for my son, who chose the colors.  Here's the back, which has nothing at all to do with the front but plenty to do with my son.  The blue and red lines like the lines on a hockey rink seemed like a good idea until I started hand quilting and remembered I don't like quilting through seams.  I shouldn't have added any extra ones on the back!

The fabrics are not actually on an angle like that.  I just took a crooked picture.  However, that would look pretty cool...

So now that's done, the hand work has shifted to sewing binding to the back of the Minions quilt. The binding of three other projects is attached and waiting for the hand stitching, so there should be 4 more finishes to share soon!

And just to have it to refer back to, here's my quilt-related to-do list:

1.  Finish binding treeskirt, table topper and snowflake quilt.
2.  Final proofreading of the Blaze pattern.
3.  Finish writing pattern for snowflake quilt (half done)
4.  Finish writing pattern for treeskirt/table topper (2/3 done)
5.  Finish last 4 blocks of yellow/grey/black quilt (must name that one sometime)
6.  Pick out quilting I started on purple Sparkling Trail and start over (that's a whole other story!)
7.  Finish cutting out and start sewing red Valentine version of Tic Tac Kiss
8.  Start one or two completely new projects (ideas are percolating as I type)