Happy to be Scrappy

Happy to be Scrappy

Friday, August 10, 2018

Border Selections

How does anyone ever decide what fabric they are going to use as a border?  For one thing, I don't like to do borders.  I was pleasantly surprised when the narrow border of pieced flying geese actually fit.  I knew it was supposed to but I didn't figure it would.

Neither of these fabrics does anything great for this quilt.  Of the two I'd lean toward the blue plaid.
I'll probably end up buying something else completely different.

The yellow looks a little washed out to me.  That and it would be terrible to cut and sew on as a border since it would need to line up correctly with the pattern of squares it has.  The yellow may just end up as a back.  When I bought it the thought never occurred to me I'd have to fussy cut  and piece it.  There is 7 or 8 yards of this fabric.  It might make two backs.

Speaking of fussy cutting and piecing, this plaid is yet another example of a fabric I should not buy.  There is around three yards of it.  Not enough for a very big back.  But a back it may become.

Now this I'm happy with.  The picture just shows the 9" blocks laid out but as of now it's all sewn together and is just the right size for a lap quilt.  In my previous post about this there was a neutral fabric with too much black in it.  I did remove that strip and in doing so decided it was too much work to sew back together.  It ended up easier to make a new block. The first block will make a great label for the back.

I took the kids clothes shopping for school.  Oh my, never again all three of them to a store that doesn't have carts.  One or two of them need to be corralled somewhat to help keep little fingers off of things.  One of them, and I'm not saying who, but it wasn't a girl knocked over most of a display of metal drinking bottles.  That made quite the clatter.  You can see how tired Allison was at the end of the day.  But not too tired to eat ice-cream. Grace will be in fifth grade and Allison starts Kindergarten this year.  T is still in preschool.  He just turned four.  Unbelievable.

Tomorrow Burlingame Quilt Guild is having a sew day.  I'm hoping to get a lot done.  I do however, still need to decide which project I'm taking with me.  And what I'm bringing for potluck.


Friday, July 6, 2018

These blocks are getting close to being done.  I've been looking for a border fabric and just have no idea what to put with it. On the lower right side are a pig block and a hand mixer block. Those are both replacements for blocks that I didn't want to use. I have a few more to make and then this will be ready to layout and sew together.

These Farm Girl Vintage blocks are all sewn together. I've been using the flying geese border as my leader/ender on the alphabet quilt.  The flying geese are all made and have been sewn into pairs and from there I will start working on not putting too many of one color in any one area.  In the book Lori Holt used all red flying geese, I opted for scrappy using the fabrics in the blocks.

If those two tops aren't enough mess at my sewing area I decided to try my hand at red and neutral log cabin blocks. I was gifted an overflowing plastic bag of red fabrics (several scrappy yards total) so I've been cutting them down into 2 1/2" and 1 1/2" strips.  Mixing them with my neutrals and some of my reds I started making the 1 1/2" strips into log cabin blocks. The 2 1/2" strips are going into 9 patch blocks.

I may have to take that black and white strip out of that block.  Right now it is standing out like a sore thumb.  Either that or put more in there.   In 2014 I blogged about starting some scrappy log cabin blocks.  They didn't look the way I had hoped and are in my orphan block tote. Hopefully these make it all the way to being an actual top. I have these six blocks done and another four that need another round. These blocks finish at 9".  It's a start anyway.

Happy sewing,

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

I have too many projects started right now - but what the heck, let's start another one.

This is the first of something like 45 or 46 Moda Blockhead mystery blocks. They release a new block every Wednesday.  I've also finished the second one but don't have a picture on my phone of it.  I love the way this one turned out but don't really have enough variety of vintage pinks to work with to keep it going.  So I'm either going to have to go really scrappy or change my colors.  I looked at buying more pinks but didn't find anything I wanted to spend the money on right now.  Guess I don't love it that much.

I am, however,  loving the alphabet quilt from Lori Holt's book Spelling Bee.  I now have all of the letters and punctuation blocks done.  Since this picture was taken I have also made 12(?) of the seventeen picture blocks.  Some of the picture blocks she used I'm not going to put in my quilt.  They are cute but a kid wouldn't have a clue what they are without an explanation.  For instance she has a rotary dial telephone and a typewriter block. I'm sure they are still around but this quilt is intended for a child and those two things will never have any meaning for them.  While I'm working on the blocks for this quilt I'm using the sashing pieces for the Farm Girl Vintage quilt as my leader/enders.


This happened last week.  My car hit 200,000 miles.  I half expected to look in the rearview mirror and see pieces and parts falling off and hitting the road behind me but that still hasn't happened.  And knock on wood it doesn't happen very soon. For 20 plus years I've traded in my cars when they get just over 90,000 miles.  This time I wasn't in a position to do that and luckily this car just keeps going.  Once it went over the 100,000 mark I just decided to drive it till it stops.  Hopefully, it still has a few miles left to go. I'm not ready to start making payments again.

Happy quilting,

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

These pretty fabrics were selected for a sew day that was held at Overbrook Quilt Connection on April 27th.  Cathy and I attended and sewed ALL day long.  It was great. We arrived at 9:00 and were able to sew until 7:00 that evening.  I would have stayed longer if allowed. The pattern was a mystery and given out one clue at a time.  Near the end of the day they showed a couple of finished quilts from the pattern but I didn't peek.  The next day I had my top together and wasn't disappointed in the finished top. (Finished without borders still.)  I didn't purchase any of the fabrics for the project I just went with what I had on hand so my color choice was limited to what I had yardage of.  And in my sewing room there isn't much to select from that is over a yard.
The Kaffe Fassett is some that I bought probably 10 years ago at a shop in Concordia, The silly binocular fabric was purchased on line a few months ago from Hancock's of Paducah.  I'm sure I paid less than 3.00 a yard for it when I was buying fabric for backs.  The colors of that fabric fit perfect for this quilt but the binoculars are terrible.  The purple flower fabric is from mom's stash.  I'm pretty sure it was the back for Jesse and Victoria's signature quilt she made for their wedding.

Fabric choices

Complete center without borders.

Closer view of fabrics.

All in all it was a terrific way to spend the day.  Cathy and I were able to visit with each other and meet a lot of great quilters too.

This is my version of Bonnie Hunter's Virginia Bound quilt pattern.  The unquilted top has been a part of my blog header picture for several years.  Well I finally got it quilted and have one side of the binding left to do before it will finally be handed over to my son Jesse.  This picture was taken at quilt guild during show and tell.  My sister Cathy is shown holding it.  No, Cathy I didn't edit you out.  You're my quilting partner and I'm so glad you are.  Maybe a picture without a chair in the way will be posted later.  And maybe not.

Grace as the cowardly lion.
I spent a Saturday out with Victoria and the kids.  The carousel at the park had opened for the summer and Grace was ready to go. The carousel was built in 1908 and is in great condition as the city of Topeka takes very good care of it.

Allison as Dorothy.

Grace and Tyler
Not much sewing has been going on in the last couple of weeks.  Not much of anything, actually.  I'm once again limited to what I can do because of my back.  Let's just say I won't be pushing mom up a hill and then back down again any time soon. It was too much strain for my back to take.  I haven't been this bad since my surgery last year.  With time it will pass.  But I'm ready today!


Friday, April 20, 2018

This is a baby quilt that I made for a friend earlier this month. It is a pattern from Sew Fresh Quilts.  The pattern was done as a sew-a-long in 2015 and can be found under the Quilt Alongs tab.

The directions were very easy to follow.  I did opt to only use two different dog faces since my goal was to have dogs that looked like Mandy's Boston Terrier.  It only took two weekends to put the top and back together.  All of the fabric was from my stash.

I couldn't resist putting a row of puppy dog tracks on the backside of the quilt.  The white square on the left side is a color catcher.  With baby quilts I would rather them be able to wash it in their own detergent than use mine.  But every first wash needs a color catcher which can easily be paper clipped to the side.

This is Mandy opening the quilt at her baby shower. I was kind and didn't post the picture of her bawling her eyes out.  A quilting success!

The picture above however, is NOT a quilting success.  This is the back of a quilt that is still on my sisters Longarm. Blogger insists that Longarm be capitalized.  The words that I was saying when this occurred were capitalized and had lots of asterisks and other symbols.  When it was all said and done the machine had to go to the machine doctor and have the timing reset.  I still have no idea what happened.  That machine and I don't get along very well.  Which is so sad because I had great hopes of quilting a lot of the tops just sitting folded up at my house.

Grace and Allison
The girls and Victoria came by my work a couple of weeks ago.  We walked up and down the sidewalks in downtown Topeka.  Topeka has installed quite a bit of artwork, statues, fountains, etc.
along a four or five block section.  I've been wanting to get out there with the girls for quite a while.  I'm glad we were able to.  Allison did just what I expected her to - she climbed on everything.  When I took this picture Grace said "I'm sitting in his lap." and laughed with a bit of embarrassment.

Happy Friday,


Tuesday, March 27, 2018

These blocks have been on my design wall for a very long time.  They are from Lori Holt's book Farm Girl Vintage.  I finished the last four or five a few weeks ago. Not only are the blocks done, but they've been organized and sewn into rows.   I was determined to get them all done and off the wall before I started on the alphabet blocks from her newest book, Spelling Bee.  

Farm Girl Vintage Blocks
Since it's been so long since I've blogged about anything I've also got birthday postcards to show.

Allison's 5th Birthday
 Allison turned five this year.  Her favorite fruit is watermelon.  It's about the only one she will eat. So while that is still the case she got a watermelon for her card.  This year I started a day out with grandma for her birthday present.  She and I went and saw Peter Rabbit. I was afraid it would scare her when the guy was chasing the rabbits around but it didn't.  She followed along with every part of that movie. She laughed out loud at the appropriate times and cried when it was an emotional scene.  I love to hear that kid laugh. It is such a sweet sound. We had lunch and went present shopping to round out the day.

Grace's 10th Birthday

For Grace's day out with grandma we went and saw A Wrinkle in Time.  Grace said she liked it but I'm not going to recommend it to anyone.
She and I also had our usual lunch at Red Robin and went shopping.  I asked her if she wanted to eat somewhere else this year but she said it is our birthday place so we should go there.  I think she likes the strawberry shakes. Unfortunately this year they put sprinkles in it so she didn't care for it as much. I included that here in case we go again next year.  Maybe I'll remember to ask them not to put sprinkles in.  There were other pictures that went with Grace's post but blogger had something else in mind with them.  They sure didn't show up here. 
I've got several other projects I've been working on, including the alphabet quilt and one or two things I'm not ready to post pictures of. 
Work has taken up so much of my time and energy that I've only been able to quilt one quilt on my sister's "new" machine.  Hopefully, that will change in the next few weeks.
At least when I come to the blog the picture of the black and red quilt won't be the first thing I see. That picture has been up since November and the sad thing is - I still don't have the back made for that quilt top.  Oh, well.
Happy Quilting,

Monday, November 20, 2017

Making Backs

My goal this last weekend was to put together a couple of backs.  Since Cathy got her new quilting machine I am needing to have something ready to load on to it.  Ha.   I didn't get very far.  I don't know what it is about me that I can't leave well enough alone.
The top shown below was 67 x 67 with no borders.  It would have made a great lap quilt.  It is also one I wouldn't mind practicing on.  I loved this fabric when I bought it in 2008 and I still do.   It's too bad that the pattern I chose didn't play well with the fabric.  It's too busy.                                                   
Since I had yards and yards of backing fabric what was I to do but add borders. With the narrow black border and the 6" outer border the top now measures 81 x 81.  It turned out great.  The borders really dressed it up and I love it.  I don't, however, have quite enough of the backing fabric leftover to make a back.  I spent Saturday and half of Sunday working on this quilt top.   I ran out of solid black fabric for the piecing I have to do to make the back large enough.  Wow.  Keeping in mind this is a top I plan to practice Longarm quilting on.
The fabrics for this top are from Blank Quilting.  The fabric selvage said it came out in 2008 which is when I think I bought it and made the original 67 x 67.  It's just a few years old.  And it may eventually get quilted.
Close up of fabrics.
In the midst of all of that I got to thinking since I'll be practicing I might as well practice on something I really want to get finished.  So I pulled out my Smith Mountain Morning top which is a Bonnie Hunter pattern.  Mom and I took the class from Bonnie several years ago in Holton.  That was a great day.  This green print is as close to a back as I can come up with for this and of course, it's not enough.  I like to run a row of blocks down the back of my quilts anyway but that means I have to make the blocks.

And yes, this is exactly how far I got in getting some backs together.  I'm no closer to being able to load a quilt than I was a week ago.  Maybe next week.

Happy Quilting,