Happy to be Scrappy

Happy to be Scrappy

Saturday, September 27, 2014

A Good Friend Indeed

One of my friends emailed me Thursday and told me about a fabric sale she had heard about.  They were going to be selling fabric scraps for $5.00 a bag.  I figured if it was any good a zip lock bag of fabric for $5.00 would be worth it so I headed to the church sale this morning.

This is not a zip lock bag. This is a large grocery bag.  Who would have thought it.

So me being the scrappy quilter that I am - I dug into their piles of fabric.  And no, I wasn't the only one filling my bag.  It was all very controlled chaos.  I even recognized one woman from Quilting On the Square in Holton. 
I ended up with lots of fabric scraps.  There are also several pieces in there that are one or more yards of fabric. I can't wait to get it home, get it sorted and then washed.  I anticipate lots of stringy pieces of fabric in my future.
Along with the bag of fabric I picked up eight of these basket quilt blocks.  They were $1.50 for all eight.  They are not hand stitched down but they were machine sewn very well.  Probably a whole lot better than I would have done.  I'll add them to my tote of orphan blocks and someday they may find their way into a quilt.

My total at the cash box was $6.50 so I handed over a ten and felt guilty that it wasn't more.  Those ladies said they would have given it away to get it out of there.  I imagine now almost two hours later that anything that is left is quite picked over but if you want to check it out they are at the St. Joseph Church on 3rd and Van Buren in Topeka.

Have a great day.


Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Featuring the letter "E"

There hasn't been a whole lot of sewing done at my house or anything else done for that matter (cleaning).  I've been happily busy every Saturday and worked every Sunday for the last couple of weeks so that doesn't leave much home time.

I do have my letter "E" done for the sew a long.  Both sets just make me smile.

I have been making a few of the churn dash blocks.  This morning I decided that I needed some 9" blocks.  These are what I have made this week.
3", 6", 9" Churn Dash blocks

Still no plan in place.  I'm just happy making blocks.  I think I'll branch out into 12" blocks next.

Last Saturday I spent the morning with Grace and Allison.  We made a trip to the zoo.  This picture was the only one I got where they were at least both looking in my direction.  Allison was not interested in getting her picture taken.
Grace started asking about the bear chair from the time we walked through the gates. I didn't remember it but she sure did.  It was a great day.

Today if you head over to Heartspun Quilts you can see the little quilts I made for Pam Buda's sew a long.  This is the third day she has shown the quilts that were made.  She had quite a few people participate.  I keep telling myself that the next one I do I'll come up with my own fabric way and not follow the same colors as the sew a long.  I really like the quilts that were done in pink.

Have a great day!


Friday, September 19, 2014

Letters C & D Are Done

Last night when I was making the C and D letters in the red I just couldn't help myself but to start them in another colorway too. Actually, I've had it planned all along.  Sometime yesterday while working diligently I remembered this silly checkered fabric I have in my stash. So that fabric along with some Kona snow and I'll have another alphabet quilt.  Again, this pattern comes from The Temecula Quilt Company. 

Scrappy Red
Checkered Version
The checkered fabric came from the Kansas Capital Quilters Guild quilt show a few years ago.  My name was drawn and I got to pick from the prizes on the table.  This fabric was a sample package attached to cardboard.  I've long since thrown that piece of cardboard away so I have no idea what line it might be from.  I think there are eight different fabrics and some of the pieces are quite small so there will be repeats but who cares?  It will make a fun and bright little quilt.

By the way the Kansas Capital Quilters Guild quilt show is this weekend.  If you click on this link or the one above it will take you to a page that gives the details.  I'm sorry to say I won't be able to make it this year.  It's always a good show. 

Tomorrow I'll be spending time with the girls.  Their mom and dad are doing some volunteer work with their church so Grandma get the girls.  Grace has volleyball practice at 9:30 so Allison and I can spend some time playing while Grace is busy.  After that who knows.  I was thinking the zoo but they keep saying rain for Topeka so that may not work.  I know I need to download some pictures on this computer of the girls.  How else am I to post pictures of them. 

My quilt came back from Quiltmaker yesterday.  So I guess it's officially mine now.  It was fun while it lasted.

Happy quilting,


Wednesday, September 17, 2014


Well, for better or for worse, I have just mailed the information to submit my quilt to Quiltmaker magazine.

This is my copy of the information. I'm sure it is a lot more than what was needed.  But better safe than sorry.  I ended up submitting four actual quilt blocks with my chicken scratch directions for them.  Also a page that includes drawings of some small blocks, my cover letter, and a flash drive that has pictures of the actual quilt on it.  And I may or may not have kissed the envelope for good luck.

I'm sure they will let me know if I sent too much or not enough.  Anyway, it's on the way now and I'm down to the waiting game of seeing if they end up publishing it or not.  If nothing else, I'm just glad I was asked to submit it.

Yesterday Quiltmaker put my Back to School quilt in the mail to me.  I'll be glad to have it back.  I'm a little sorry that that has come to an end. But I'm grateful that it may have opened the door to getting my quilt published.  BTW, I just checked the tracking on UPS.  My package went from Colorado to Salina, KS then they shipped it to Lenexa, KS.  Hmmm - I'm pretty sure that they went right through or over Topeka to get there.  Perhaps not the most direct route possible.


Tuesday, September 16, 2014

A little Tuesday morning sewing.

Saturday ended up being a rather productive day for me - sewing anyway.  I was able to get the binding stitched on my quilt First Take. This picture doesn't show that but I don't want anyone to have to go back to older posts to try to figure out which quilt I'm talking about.  And that includes me.  The next time I show this one it will be done!  All I need to do is hand stitch the binding.

First Take
I also started making the newest Temecula Quilt Co. quilt Little Letters.  The only one I got done on Saturday was the "A".  I didn't even know that the "B" pattern was available.  And as of yesterday the "C" is also available.  This morning I had a few extra minutes so I made the "B". Yikes, I figured out on the way to work that the majority of the problems I had were operator error.
I was prepared to post the corrections I would suggest.  But now that I've had some time to think about it I think the problems may have been all mine.
Temecula Quilt Co. doesn't give directions on how to sew the block together.  They just give you the cutting sizes.  The two almost squares that are shown on the bottom are cut 1 1/2 x 1 1/3 and make the lower half of the upper part of the "B".  When I sewed them together they were too short.  So I recut them to be 1 1/2" square and sewed it again.  Well that was much better but the block ended up being a little too big.  So I trimmed a little from the top and the bottom.  Duh, the original pieces were right.  I just sewed them together on the wrong sides.  I sewed the 1 1/2 sides and should have sewed the 1 1/3 sides.  Hope that makes sense.  Anyway the block will work.  No harm, no foul.

Blocks measure 4 1/2" x 4 1/2"
For this quilt I'm thinking I'll use all the same background and use a different red for each letter.  However, my plan is to make a second quilt that is a little more colorful than that.  Tonight my goal is to get the "C" done and to start figuring out how I want the second quilt to look.

You might notice that I added a couple of blogs to my blog list. These are blogs that I go to everyday to see if they've added anything new.  It just makes sense to share them on here instead of going to my list of favorites to pull them up.  I'll probably be adding a few more at some point.  When I bounce around looking at other peoples blogs I will often check out their blog list and then open a few of them.  It's a good way to find some great blogs.

Happy Tuesday!


Friday, September 12, 2014

Busy Week

It has been a busy week at work.  That means I've not done any sewing to speak of.  I have been cleaning out some of the flotsam in my quilting room trying to find all of the scraps of paper I may or may not have drawn and or written on for the quilt I'm submitting to Quiltmaker.  Since I am usually a fly by the seat of my pants quilter sometimes I don't write much down.  Luckily for me the focus block of this quilt took a little figuring out.  So I have found some notes.  I have decided to take some time this weekend and make another of the blocks to see if the notes actually were what I ended up with.  I'm sure other people do this too but I wish I'd get better at keeping a history of my progress.

Tomorrow is one of our sew days.  I'll be taking the Churn Dash blocks to work on.
6" and 3" Churn Dash blocks
There has been a little progress made with these since I started using them as my leader/enders.  I probably have around 25 of the 3" blocks made.  Yep, that's too many for my original thinking on this project for pillow covers.  No, I haven't decided if I'm going bigger with it or not.  We shall see.

I'm also going to take my version of Hip-Hopscotch which I called First Take.   It still needs the binding put on. That shouldn't take me very long to sew on and then I'll have some handwork to do. 
First Take

My plan is to take a couple of pans of cinnamon rolls with me.  I'll need to get busy on those tonight if I'm going to take them.

Other than sew day on Saturday and work on Sunday my weekend looks to be pretty uneventful. 

Happy sewing,



Tuesday, September 9, 2014

My Version of Hip-Hopscotch

When Quiltmaker selected me to be one of the eight quilters for the Back to School Party I was (still am) so excited and terrified.  Terrified of cutting some of their fabric wrong for one thing.  So I decided to take their pattern and make it from some of my fabrics. Lately I have been in the mood to work with bright colors and this is about as bright as they get in my stash.
First Take
I think I'll call this one First Take since that's basically what it is.  That blue fabric in the blocks and border has been in my stash for years.  I'm sure it was picked up on a shop hop from somewhere near here.  But I'm sure I couldn't tell you.  The only fabric that wasn't in my stash was the pale yellow.  I ran into Great Plains Quilt Co. and got that one.  I'll say right here that when I wrote the answers to the questions that appear on the Quilty Pleasures blog I did not give them the name of the shop here in town.  Diane Harris who put all of that together researched the name and put it in there.  Good for Diane!  I didn't know I could be that specific when I shamelessly plugged our little town.  Anyway, on to more pictures.

Please, please, please biggie size the pictures and get a close up view of that awesome quilting.  Actually, the quilting on this one did not go as easily as it did on the Quiltmaker version.  For one thing, my thread broke over and over again.  Not a good way to spend a day.  But it still looks great in my not so humble opinion.  Normally I'm a humble person.  But I am proud of learning the quilting. Can you tell?

Imagine my surprise when Diane Harris again went above and beyond my answers and found the horrible picture that I posted on here of me practicing the quilting on paper.
The picture Diane posted on my bio.


Quilt Back
Here is what the quilt back looks like.  I used just about every inch of all of the fabrics.  I may be able to get a few string pieces out of some of them but it's doubtful.  Way to use up the old stash fabrics!
Close up of fabrics

And there you have it.  Most anyone who sees this will realize that my quilt does not have the binding on it.  Not yet, anyway.  It will but I wanted to be sure to write this post while it was still timely.  And for the next few days I have something else I need to do when I'm at home.

When Quilty Pleasures was asking for people to apply to be sewers for the Back to School Party they wanted us to send in a picture of a quilt we had made.  So the picture I sent was of a quilt I designed.  Well yesterday, in the midst of waiting for my info to appear on Quilty Pleasures I got an email from Carolyn Beam at Quiltmaker Magazine.  They are interested in publishing a pattern in their magazine for my quilt.  To say I am over the moon is to state it mildly.  So, sometime in late 2015 be on the lookout for a pattern from me in the magazine.  I really hope it all works out.  It's a great quilt and I've always believed that.  It's the one quilt that I didn't show pictures of along the design and sewing process.  And now I know why.  I'm just thrilled that someone else sees the same thing I do.

Have a great day!


Monday, September 8, 2014

Today Is The Day!

Today is the day that the Quiltmaker blog Quilty Pleasures will be showing the quilt I made from the pattern and fabrics they sent me.
This has been a great opportunity to see a little bit of the background process of how Quiltmaker puts things like this together.  I must say that Diane Harris of Quiltmaker has been great at informing all of us along the way of what was expected and when.  She also answered (sometimes in a creative way) all of the questions I had about the Back To School Quilt group.  I say creative way because I asked her how many people applied for things like this opportunity to sew a quilt. Her answer was somewhere between several dozen and several hundred.  And that our group fell somewhere in between. That answer was good enough for me.  Someone, joking I'm sure, said that there were probably only eight that applied.  Which was good because there were only eight new fabrics they wanted to showcase.  Well that got me wondering about how many do apply and the reason I asked Diane the question.

I've asked for permission to use some of Quiltmaker's photos but until I get that permission mine will have to do.  Okay, I got permission before I posted so I'll use both.

 Quiltmaker Photo used with permission.

"Back To School Quilt"
Here is a picture of my quilt. If you biggie size it you will see that all of the Hoffman fabrics have silver threads running through them.  I must say that this fabric was very nice to work with.  It has a great weight and feel.  I always wash all of my fabric before it goes in my sewing room and this fabric was no exception. That was one of the first questions I had for Diane.  Was it okay if I pre-washed it?  Permission was given and I washed it the night I got it. 

I had the fabric shipped to my office in Topeka.  It was so great to open it and find fabric that was something I liked.  This box sat next to my desk all day.  I just couldn't quit staring at it.  And I couldn't wait to play with it.

Closer View
I will say that since this was fabric I couldn't run to town and replace I was just a little afraid to start cutting it.  So I started this project by making a sample out of my fabrics.  I'll show a picture of it later this week.  I'm glad I did it that way.  This was a very simple quilt to cut out and make.  But by making the sample first it gave me the confidence to jump right in. This pattern would make a great quilt if you need to have a quilt finished in a hurry.

As I've said before on here the actual quilting was concerning me the most.  Quiltmaker actually expected us to follow their quilting design. So I started practicing first on paper then on a quilt sandwich and on to the actual quilt.
Quilting the leaf areas.
Chalked and ready for the tear drop quilting.
I found that when I drew a line through the 2" x 6" sections that needed the tear drop quilting it really helped me see where my quilting needed to meet in the middle.  I will say that as I was quilting this part the word marble kept going through my mind.  I'm sure that's why mine are rounder then they are long as shown on the pattern.  But it turned out great and now I'm sure I'll use that quilting pattern again. So this definitely was a positive learning experience for me.

That's all I have for now.  But check back.  After my post "goes live" on Quilty Pleasures I may add some more of their pictures or just write another post all together.

Will you be the next sample quilter?


Tuesday, September 2, 2014

I am getting excited about our quilts being posted on Quiltmaker's Quilty Pleasures.  In case you missed it Quiltmaker did a post that has the materials list and a black and white picture of the quilt pattern we made.  Here's a link to that page.  Just in case you would want to make one of the quilts too.  It's a simple pattern that is quick to put together.  Our quilt posts won't start until September 8th.  And again, none of us know what the schedule for the posts are. 

In the mean time I'll show another one of the quilts I did several years ago.  This one I made for me.  I took two different pattern blocks from two different Thimbleberries books and came up with this quilt.

Houses and Trees 2008

Queen Size House Quilt
First try at some free motion quilting in the houses.

This was one of my first "figure it out myself" quilts.  So in 2008 I was already figuring out that I liked scrappy quilts. The more I quilt the more fabrics I like to put in.  If I made this quilt again today I would figure out how not to cut off the tip of the tree.  Other than that I'd probably make it just the same. 

Have a great quilty day!