Happy to be Scrappy

Happy to be Scrappy

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,


Friday, October 27, 2017

The month of October has flown by and I have accomplished very little.  The bottom row made of 4" blocks was the sum of my sewing for the past few weeks.  My opinion is that this group of rows needed to have another row with some white in it.  The rows folded on the left side all pretty much have the same green/blue backgrounds.  I liked the row of flying geese that someone else had made so I went with another narrow row with white background.

On the 14th my sister Cathy and I took a couple of classes with a Handi Quilter trainer.  Cathy took the plunge and bought a Handi Quilter Fusion.  And I'm going to be lucky enough to be able to use it too.  I'm really looking forward to seeing what Cathy and I come up with in our quilting abilities.  Right now it all seems a little daunting to me.

Since I recently finished a quilt (I've not yet shown pictures. I do wish Quiltmaker would get back with me about publishing it.) I'm trying to figure out what to work on.  Wednesday I put all of these blocks in order and dreamed about them for a while.  They are from Lori Holt's book Farm Girl Vintage .  I am wanting to start the Saturday sew a long for her book Spelling Bee but don't know that I can justify starting another group of blocks when I still have 16 - 20 left to do of these.  All I did was dream over these.  I never did start another block.

This last Sunday afternoon I went with Jesse's family to a church Halloween party.  The girls had a good time.  Victoria made their costumes and did a great job on them. 

Allison as a Watermelon Shopkin

Grace as a Blueberry Jolly Rancher
There were a lot of things to do in the month of October, unfortunately, every time I've done something I've spent days trying to recuperate from it.  I caught a virus the last week of September.  I tried to wait it out but ended up at the doctor on October 12th with an infection that I was treated for.  That never seemed to get better so on October 23rd I was back at the doctor and told I have pneumonia.  I've been on steroids and antibiotics since Monday for that.  Here it is Friday and I'm trying to decide if I should call the doctor again or wait until my next appointment on Tuesday.  One thing I do know is I'm looking forward to the weekend.  I need a couple of rest days before another busy week at work starts.  Sick, sick go away.  Don't come back another day.


Tuesday, October 3, 2017

No, I didn't forget.  It just seems like I've been too busy to even think about writing a post.  Right now I should be working but it is time for me to take a well deserved break. I'll have to get back at it again pretty soon though.

The top row is the original row, my sisters is the one that can barely be seen on the right side.  The bottom row is what I did for the September guild meeting.  The two blocks came from Lori Holt's  new book Spelling Bee.  I have been making plans and a lot of notes in that book since it came in the mail a few weeks ago.  After all,  Allison is going to need her own "I Am"  quilt.  It can't be just like the one I made for Grace but it will have a similar theme I'm sure.  Allison told me the other day her favorite color is black.  For a four year old to have black as a favorite color seems a bit unusual to me.  But that's our Allison - she is like no other child I know.

One of these days I'm going to post the before and after pictures of my quilt room.  It has been such an unbearable mess for the longest time.  I'm finally making myself spend some time cleaning, putting away, donating, and throwing stuff out.  I'm down to organizing the fabric.  Goodness knows, that's going to take some time.

Well, before the day gets away from me I better get busy.

Happy sewing,

Friday, September 22, 2017

This just looks like a strip of blocks.  It is actually the back for the orange top that is pictured in the header of my blog.  I made the top a couple of years ago and have been too intimidated to quilt it on my sewing machine.  Well, that's all over now.  I'm ready to get at it.  But first it needed a back.  Considering the fact that this quilt is huge this strip for the back took me more than one sitting to put together.  The strip is not laying on that fabric it is sewn in between the two pieces.  When it is finished my plan is that the pieced strip will be off center in the back.  We shall see.

Now I need to get a piece of batting that is large enough.  I really don't want to piece one together.  This quilt is intended to be special to the person that receives it.  It would be terrible if after a wash or two the batting got lumpy

I of course, can't find a picture of the whole top on this computer.  As a matter of fact I don't think I've ever taken one.  The pictures I posted before didn't have the borders attached.
Post from 2014.  This top is several years old and was promised long ago.  Shame on me.

Here's hoping I don't get discouraged with such a daunting task.  I do love this quilt.  BTW this is a Bonnie Hunter pattern.


Friday, August 25, 2017

Eclipse Day

It is unreal that August is almost over. My September is going to be extremely busy at work so I'm not looking forward to September getting here any sooner than it has to.  Oh, well.

This is the row I worked with this month.  The log cabins are the original, the second row is my sister Cathy's (she always comes up with something great), and the bottom row is what I made.   The pile on the left are the other rows that go with these.  There just isn't room to spread them all out.  That, and I was running very far behind in getting this months done so I was just grateful I had something to take a picture of.

My family was one that was excited about seeing the eclipse.  Since we were so close to the area that would be able to see the total eclipse that was where we headed.

We ended up in Fairview Kansas.  A small town about an hour and twenty minutes from Burlingame.  We were at a park with restrooms (thank goodness) and a playground for the kids.  It was a wonderful day except for the clouds.  Oh, and the rain.  We were able to see the full eclipse, it was visible in between the clouds every once in a while.  And it definitely got dark.  All in all, it was a great experience and a great day.  I'm so glad I didn't miss it.

Allison August 21, 2017 Fairview, KS Solar Eclipse day.

Another thing we didn't miss was the traffic going home.  The hour and twenty minute trip to Fairview ended up taking several hours back home.  The first 11 miles took over an hour.  It was bumper to bumper for miles and miles.  Luckily, Allison slept so she didn't get too bored with all of it.  And we adults just talked about what a great day it was.

Merging on to Highway 75.  Don't tell Joyce I took her picture.
Happy sewing,


Monday, July 31, 2017

Here is my finished top from the last Thimble Creek Quilts sew-a-long. I do love, love, love how this turned out.  If and when it ever gets quilted it will truly be one of my favorites.

What you can't tell from this picture is that the rug on the floor is lime green.  That may tell you that the coloring is in these pictures is a little duller than it actually is.  I was hoping they would turn out better and brighter taken at my office than at home.  I do know that quilt tops leave a lot, and I mean, a lot of threads to be picked up.  Especially off of that white sofa.

Actually, the colors on the quilt aren't too far off.  The alternate blocks are done with green stars and blue squares. The final border is green flowers and green plaid.  I realized with this quilt that I don't have much for larger pieces in my stash.  Most of everything I have is less than one yard.  I know that's because I like scrappy and little pieces but I now know I need to add to my stash.  Darn.

I don't normally like to do borders.  They are one of my least favorite quilting things.  However, this one needed a border.  The directions made it easy and it all fit together just right.

Happy Quilting.


Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Yes, somewhere along the way I have been doing some sewing that didn't involve rows for quilt guild.  These blocks are my version of a Semi-Mystery quilt published by ThimbleCreek Quilts.
Aren't they pretty?

I almost always work with scrappy neutrals but when I started these blocks with all the same background I fell in love.  So much so, that I've actually started another quilt with all the same background.  It's my current leader/ender.

As of now, these blocks have all been sewn together and the first two borders have been added.  I'm working on the piecing of the third and final border.  I'm hoping to get it put on next weekend.
ThimbleCreek just started another Semi-Mystery sew along.  A new clue comes out every two weeks.  You do have to be signed up for their free newsletter, which can be done by following the link to their website.  They only provide the clues free for two weeks and after that they have to be purchased.  Hope this inspires someone to join along.

Happy quilting,


Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Check out this months row for quilt guild.  My row is the bottom row of flowers.  They are blocks from Lori Holt's book Farm Girl Vintage.  That seems to be my go to book to find something to make for these row quilts.

I'm not really sure that all of these rows fit together on this one.  Individually they are all great,  together, I'm not so sure.  Once a few more rows are made it will probably all work out just fine.

This time I didn't lay all of the rows out in the order they were made in.  I wanted the row my sister made right above mine, so it is.  Isn't her row terrific with the dog and cat.  I'm already going to borrow her pinwheel flower pattern for my house quilt shown below.  One of the houses has an appliqued flower.  Phooey - that pinwheel will work just fine instead.

And that brings me ONE of the other projects I'm working on.  In 2016 Moda did a free block of the week called Be My Neighbor.  I decided to make it in red,white and blue (with a little pink and black).  I'm not sure how much I'm going to like it when it's done but I'm having fun making it.  Most of these blocks are around 16" or 18".  I haven't worked with pieces that big in I don't know when.  Almost everything I make anymore is little pieces.

Have a great rest of the week.


Monday, June 26, 2017

Here is my current "row of the month".  This one is for Deloris Rieck.  She wanted her quilt to have houses.  Several others had already done some houses so I decided to do a church.

Mine once again, looks oversized to the others.  I'm not sure that it is as noticeable as it shows in this picture. My row is just closer to the camera and it's 12" wide and most of the others are 9". Deloris' row is the top one, my sister's is the third from the top.  My sister and I actually used blocks from the same pattern.  She just made hers much smaller.  The pattern for my block was originally 18" tall so the church only has two windows instead of four and is a bit narrower through the roof.  These rows are making me think and make adjustments that I normally don't do.   And can I just say wow again about the paper pieced and appliqued blocks. Deloris wanted all of the rows to have a light blue background so she provided several different prints for her quilt.  These blocks are my favorites so far.  Now to find out what the next rows will be.  Unfortunately, I haven't been to quilt guild in a couple of months because of work and ball games so I haven't been able to see what everyone else is doing.  Maybe I can make it in July?

Happy quilting,


Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Another month is all but gone. Hard to believe May is almost over.  Now we are heading into the all too hot days of summer.

Another month means another row to be posted.
Once again, the top row is the original and the bottom row is mine.  I omitted one of the rows.  There just wasn't room to fit them all in this time.  I took this picture in a hurry and really didn't take much time to set it up.  Obviously. 

I had good intentions with my row but must say I'm a bit disappointed in how it turned out.  I searched and searched until I found something that would go with the other rows.  The deer should have been perfect but it took me way too long to make it.  Right at 4 1/2 hours.  For ONE BLOCK.  The block is a Pam Bono design. I'm so glad she creates designs that don't have to be paper pieced but wow it took a lot of time. By the time I finished it I wasn't in the mood to figure much else out.  The trees came from a pattern in a Quiltmaker magazine. I'm sorry I don't remember the designer's name.  What I don't like about the row is that the background on the deer doesn't match up with the background on the trees and NO WAY was I going to remake any of it.  The "snow" looks whiter than it shows up in the picture.

My sister Cathy made the second row. I love the way her snowflakes turned out.  And those little tiny stars were not paper pieced. Wow. 

Happy Quilting,


Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Barn Blocks

My sister Joyce did something I find to be pretty incredible. On Saturday she asked if I wanted to make a trip to Herington with her. I thought we were going to pick up something for Bill, but on the way she told me she had ordered herself a barn block. We discussed different patterns. I told her I would probably go with a Carpenter's Wheel. At that point she probably avoided telling me her choice.
When we got to our destination the husband of the lady who made the blocks invited us into the garage to pick them up.  I know that my eyes got as big as saucers.  I know that I shed more than one tear. And I know that I said in a very loud voice - that's my quilt.  And it was.

My sister chose my block design from the quilt I made mom.  It's also the quilt that Quiltmaker Magazine published on their blog as a block of the month.

The barn blocks were made by a lady named Julie Keithline. Didn't she do a fantastic job. I'm glad she added all of the other colors in the string pieced area.  It will make each of them more visible up on a wall.  Joyce let me have first pick.  I chose the block on the top left. I like the red and yellow.  Another thing that Julie Keithline did was use the original colors in the centers of the blocks.  She put so much detail in using different methods to make it really look like different fabrics.  Uunfortunately, she wasn't at home when we picked up the blocks. I would have loved to talk to her.  Her husband did say that she had been interviewed for a magazine and that these were the blocks she was working on at the time.  So I'll be on the lookout for them to be published somewhere.

Thank you sister. What a gift.


Monday, May 1, 2017

New rows for quilt guild. Yes, it is now May 1st and these blocks have been done for quite a while.  But I've been very busy for quite a while too.

Again, the top row is the original and the bottom row is mine.  I try to work with the original colors but in this picture it sure looks like I took mine from the applique row.  It all looks better together in person.

I've now got the row to make that is due at the May meeting.  I haven't even opened the bag and looked yet.  Better get that done before time gets away from me.

The last couple of weeks have been crazy busy.  I still work for the same Association but we've sold the office and the main part of the business is moving to Wichita (after 85 years in Topeka). While my part, the bookkeeping, is staying in Topeka at a new location.  That has meant a lot of organizing, throwing out and packing.  And now the unpacking at my office.  I'm sharing an office with another company.  Which to me feels like I'm starting a new job.  For now it's uncomfortable at best.  But it will improve with time. What  I need right now are for the weekends to out number the workdays. And since that's not going to happen I just need to get over it and get to work.

Oh, happy day.


Thursday, April 6, 2017

I have been doing some sewing.   For February at quilt guild I had my sisters row by row to work on.  Hers is the top row.  She is going for a Christmas theme.  Well, I would have thought that I had plenty of fabrics to go with her colors but mine ended up a little lighter or brighter.  My row is the bottom one with the house.  The house is a Lori Holt pattern and the leaves are Thimbleberries which is what the top rows blocks are.  The lady who did the squirrel row does an amazing job at paper piecing.  I'm really going to have to learn to do that some day.  I have actually made the birds and leaves before.  In 2011 I made a wall hanging for my mother using those two blocks.  Here's a link to my version.  Cardinal Wall Hanging

This is a new project that should have been done by April 1st (the day of the baby shower) and it wasn't.  It is a baby quilt for my great nephew Ivan.  Ivan will be here some time in May and I'm hoping to have this quilted by then.  In full disclosure - I tried to make the border with the 1/2 square triangles that the pattern called for.  It was a complete failure.  There was absolutely no way that border was going to fit. Now I have about 150 brown and tan 1/2 square triangles in my stash.  Oh, well.   I was going to put the babies name on the border but after being asked "what is it" I decided to label it as the hedgehog that it is.

This is the third Quiltmaker Patch Pals baby quilt I've made.  Here are links to my other two.
  Patch Monkey  and Patch Kitty

Happy Sewing


Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Grace's postcard is done and in the mail.  Too bad I don't have a picture to show.  Yep, I forgot to take one before I sent it.  I'll have to get one after she opens it.

On another note my version of Bonnie Hunter's mystery "En Provence" is a flimsy.

 I absolutely love the way it turned out .  The red, white , blue and black worked perfectly in this quilt .  And I can't leave out the gray.  Bonnie had dark pink where I have the light gray stars.
This is one I would really like to see done and on my bed.  Too bad, there are other tops that have to be done first. 

At quilt guild we are doing a row by row quilt .  In January those wanting to participate brought in a 36" long strip of what ever blocks made them happy.  It didn't matter what height the rows were just that they were 36" long. Every month we will pass to the next person on our list.  We won't see what was done to accompany our original blocks until the reveal in October or November.  Here is what I have to turn in tonight at guild.  The top row is what I was working with.  The second row is the one I made.  Both rows are 12" by 36" but the top row was bordered with black fabric which makes it look quite a bit smaller than the one I made.  I clearly marked the original section so the one who gets it next will work from it and not from mine since they look so much different.

In the barn block I decided to add a little humor.  There is a spider in the top window, a pig in the left and a chicken in the right.  That added a little black to the blocks to go with the original row.

I do wish that I had gone with a different color for the block on the left.  It should have been blue or just anything but pink.  In my opinion it blends too much with the red barn.  But since I am a procrastinator I didn't have enough time to make another one.  So it is what it is.  My block patterns came from a book by Lori Holt called Farm Girl Vintage.  I love that book!

Happy quilting.


Saturday, February 11, 2017

These are all of the birthday postcards  I have made so far. The top two rows are for Grace who will be 9 on the 26th. The bottom row is for Allison who just turned four.  I appreciate that Victoria is saving them all.
With Grace I started with a theme of one candle , two, three ,  etc.  Hmmm wonder when I forgot about that  for Allison . That's our pretty Allison in the picture .


Thursday, February 9, 2017

It's birthday time again.  And that means time for a couple of postcards to be made. This one is for Allison.  She will be four on the 10th of February.  Four being the reason there are four fish on the card.
I use my the embroidery stitches on my Janome to write the text.  But I do like to fill out the address in my writing. A simple card, but one I'm sure she will appreciate when she's 40 and not 4.
On another note.  A couple of months ago I signed up for the Sew Mama Sew giveaway and was actually a winner this time.  This is the fabric bundle I was sent.  Fun fabrics, fun colors.  The fabric was given to me by Leanne at She Can Quilt.  I must have an orange theme going on this week.  There seems to be a lot of orange fabric in this post.  Orange is a good thing when it comes to fabric.

Hopefully, in my next post I'll have a postcard ready for Grace.  She'll be 9 on the 26th.  There's still loads of time to get one made.


Tuesday, January 10, 2017

A few weeks ago Lynn Wilder at Sew'n Wild Oaks asked people to help her name her latest quilt .  I was lucky enough to come up with the name Spoken For. And for coming up with the name Lynn sent me some of the fabrics she had left over from making the quilt.
There are a couple of very pretty reds and a few neutrals that have already made it into the blocks of my version of Bonnie Hunter's mystery quilt .

Unfortunately, even though I find myself with a lot of extra time, I  haven't been able to do much sewing this week.
On Saturday New Years eve morning I woke up in excruciating sciatic pain with my left foot numb.  On Tuesday I had a doctor appointment, Wednesday an MRI and a different doctor, Friday back surgery .  Apparently when your lower leg and foot lose feeling things move along at a rapid pace.  Now I'm at a snails pace though .  No bending, and no lifting over 8 lbs for six weeks .  I have tried sitting at my sewing machine twice .  Each time I've made it about 10 minutes.  This morning I did finish sewing the last of the pieces I need for the mystery .  I'm hoping that this afternoon I'll feel like pressing them. It will take me some time to work back up to a marathon sewing day.
Luckily my kids and sisters are taking care of the things I can't do. You just have no idea how many times in a day you need to bend over to pick something up or work on laundry or the dishes .
This too shall pass .

Happy sewing ,