Catching Up

Just because I haven’t been blogging doesn’t mean I haven’t been making stuff. Or acquiring things.

First there were the quilty Christmas goodies, a puzzle, a book, a table topper pattern and the Creative Grids mini Pineapple tool.

Next came the knitting fail. Remember how I am not a knitter but I’d fallen in love with this Craftsy Kit (yes, that’s an affiliate link)? And I was going to knit it myself with lots of help from my knitting friends? 

Yeah, well, I cast it on, knitted a few rows and ripped it out five or six times. This is what the last one looked like:

You didn’t really think that I was going to show you what it looked like five rows in, did you? Especially not five rows I repeatedly ripped back.

After that fiasco, I needed to feel accomplished at something so I made my first ever zipper pouch to contain the knitting supplies that Carolyn had so kindly lent me when I returned them. If we count this zipper pouch as a bag, I have accomplished one of my quilty resolutions. I made the bag a slightly strange shape because I needed to fit circular needles into it. It also, coincidentally, exactly fits Carolyn’s Bible.

However, I am apparently more stubborn than I originally thought about the whole knitting thing. So I decided to take a lace knitting class on Craftsy. I chose Lace Knitting: Basics and Beyond with Eunny Jang  (affiliate link) because it was on sale and I’m not a serious knitter. I just need to conquer this one thing. Seriously, now it is a challenge. If you are at all interested in lace knitting, I strongly recommend it. Eunny Jang is a great teacher and I’m learning a lot.

Of course, I had returned Carolyn’s knitting equipment so I had to get something with which to knit. I found a complete set of bamboo knitting needles and accessories at Amazon, the affiliate link is below.

Here’s what I got:

So, yes, I have still been doing some knitting. Mostly practice swatches, but I’m actually enjoying it. We will see how long this lasts. This isn’t my first go round with knitting. I learned to knit as a child and made a few things (including the world’s weirdest Christmas stocking for my oldest nephew), but I never really enjoyed it. We will see how this goes.

Of course I haven’t forsaken my first love. I have put the borders on the Christmas Jelly Roll Race. I don’t have finished pictures, but here is the fabric I used.

I finished Clue Two of the On Ringo Lake Mystery. I’m taking a break from that to work on Charlotte Hawkes’ Summer Stars on Fawn Lake Mystery, but I only have pictures of the On Ringo Lake Clue 2.

I have been working on hand quilting the 2009 Designer Mystery BOM. Here’s the block I finished most recently. Yes, most of it is stitch in the ditch.

And my husband brought a few of his mom’s collector’s plates up from the basement so that we can start trying to sell them. I don’t have much hope that they will sell for much if anything, but I do need to start listing them on eBay. Here’s the pile of them in the living room. And that’s what I’ve been up to. What about you?

Quilt on!

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Deep Thursday Thoughts

Not really. Don’t be shocked. Deep is not me. It really isn’t. And not much progress has been made around here on anything.

My Clue #2 of On Ringo Lake is all done except I need to press and trim up 60 more of the flying geese. I should get that done today. Then I think I will take a short pause before moving on to Clue #3. It’s not like I’ve been keeping up or anything like that.

I need to cut the fabrics for Charlotte’s Mystery Quilt, Summer Stars on Fawn Lake. I haven’t even started that yet, although I do have a project box waiting for it. I think the first clue comes next week, Tuesday maybe.

Jaye from Artquiltmaker asked a question about the 2009 Designer Mystery BOM. I finished that top before I ever began this blog, or shortly thereafter. You can see a picture and read about it here. It has been patiently waiting on my quilting frame to actually be quilted. It made it onto the frame shortly before my youngest daughter got engaged in 2012. That meant it had to wait for the wedding quilt to be hand quilted and then it also had to wait through parts of each year as the church quilts took precedence, but I hope this year is its year.

I fell in love with a knitted shawl kit on Craftsy a month or so ago. It was less than $20 and came with teal yarn if I wanted that color so I purchased it. I do not consider myself a knitter. I don’t even really like to knit, but this quilt was so pretty and I know exactly where to go for help so I bought it. It is not an easy pattern (do I ever like easy?) and I have cast it on and knitted and ripped it out three times now. I was sure the third time would be the charm, but I’m pretty sure that ship has sailed. I’m not sure how many times I will do this before I look for a crocheted shawl that I like almost as well. Sigh. Here’s a link to the kit, not an affiliate link though. Just a link. It is stunning.

And those are all my deep thoughts. All of them. Care to share some of yours?

Quilt on!

Still Plugging Along

I know that I haven’t been doing any blogging, but I have been sewing and quilting. Nothing too exciting, but something.

For example:

  1. Another round on the second Rosette 2 for La Passacaglia is now complete. 
  2. And I made this month’s Saturday Sampler block – it is the third of the blue corner blocks.
  3. I also cut the framing strips for the blocks and attached them to the 11 blocks I had completed. Then all the blocks had to be squared and trimmed to 15 1/4″. Once I had done that, I realized that the 8 completed blocks that were not the corners are actually the side borders for center medallion so I put them together. (Someday I may rant about what I think of the way this designer’s patterns are written, but I won’t waste time on that now.)
  4. And I have been working on the next few Lone Star block pieces. 
  5. Last, but not least, I have been doing some hand quilting. This is the block I’m currently working on.

What have you been working on?

Quilt on!

Memorial Day Sew-In Success

I thought there was a chance that I might not even get to join in on the Memorial Day Sew-In on Twitter due to a hectic week or two of travel and visitors, but, not only did I get to sew on Memorial Day itself, but I also got a very good start on putting together my Birds in the Air blocks for the Twilter block exchange (and I finished the last few tonight).

For the blocks I used a white solid (I’m pretty sure it’s a Bella solid) and varying scraps for the colors. I can tell you what project each of the fabrics I used came from. As a matter of fact, I’m about to do just that. First up, the ones I made on Memorial Day.

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The top two blocks are made with fabric from the 2009 FQS Designer Mystery BOM which has lingered in my quilting frame downstairs waiting for me to not have anything more important to hand quilt. I got it onto the frame a month or so before my daughter became engaged to her now husband and the wedding quilt took over the hand quilting mojo. Since then, most of the hand quilting time has gone to the church quilt which is a wholecloth quilt and requires a lot of quilting! Here’s what the top looks like:102_3033The one on the lower left is the border fabric from my eldest daughter’s quilt (Janni’s Woven Star). Here’s a reminder of what that one looks like:IMG_0544 IMG_0545 IMG_0554And here’s a closeup of the border fabric with chalk marking on it:IMG_0532Then the fabric on the bottom right is from the backing fabric for my youngest daughter’s wedding (AKA, Spotts’ Sea of Love) quilt and Hearts of Flowers. Here are the blocks I finished tonight:IMG_4022The top fabric here is the border fabric of the first church quilt for which I was the project manager. This one:100_0662And last, but not least, the fabric on the bottom is from Philippa’s Mug Rug from last year’s swap. Here it is:IMG_4230

2016 Quilty Resolutions

First let’s look at my responses to Sandy’s 2016 Quilty Resolutions Challenge and Giveaway. My answers are in blue.

The first thing I am going to do to “clean house,” mentally or physically, in my quilty life in 2016 is… Make a list! (I don’t do this often enough!)

The second thing I am going to do to “clean house,” mentally or physically, in my quilty life in 2016 is… Offload some fabric that I don’t picture myself using or don’t love.

The third thing I am going to do to “clean house,” mentally or physically, in my quilty life in 2016 is… Organize my sewing area (AKA the family room).
I choose the following word to guide my quilting/textile/fiber involvement in 2016:
(optional–explain your choice as well, if you would like to)
Diversify. I need to make some things other than big quilts.

That whole “diversify” thing looks more like a financial plan than a quilting idea, but I really need to start making a few things other than large quilts. Really. Things that are useful.

Now, onto the quilty resolutions in my sidebar. What will I do for this year? (If you haven’t seen how last year’s list went, click here.) Although I did not exactly burn through that list, I did make progress, so that’s a win. My favorite was getting the American Beauty BOM finished. I like it so much better now that it is done!

This year’s list:

  1. Complete at least 2 of the current BOMs:
    • 2009 FQS Designer Mystery BOM. (It’s on my frame for handquilting. I really need to get to it.)
    • 2011 FQS Designer Mystery BOM. (Eleven of the blocks are completed – although I have misplaced one.)
    • 2012 FQS Designer Mystery BOM. (Ten of the blocks are completed.)
    • 2014 FQS Designer Mystery BOM. (Nine blocks are completed. The finishing kit is already cut.)
    • Jinny Beyer Craftsy BOM. (This is the scariest one. I have to get brave enough to move on to the appliqué.)
  2. Finish Scrap in a Box. (This is the closest thing to a finish so far.)
  3. Make a Sew Together bag. (This is part of the whole diversifying thing.)

I’m going to cap this year’s list at three. I think I will help myself accomplish it when I sign up for my LQS’s Finishing Challenge. That is when I finished the American Beauty BOM last year. First I have to figure out which things to take over there. Sigh.

What are your quilty plans for the year?

Quilt on!

2014 Quilty Resolutions

I should really not bother making resolutions. I think we can see from yesterday’s post that I don’t do well at keeping resolutions. I think I rebel against the expectations I put on myself. I guess we’ll see how that really goes this year. I may carry over a few resolutions.

1.  Complete at least 2 of the 4 BOMs I have going. (Yep, I really am going for this.)
a. American Beauty BOM     This one is destined for my basement guest room bed.
b. 2009 Designer Mystery BOM     This one is mine! I’m not sure I can get it finished this year though since I’m handquilting it.
c. 2011 Designer Mystery BOM     I have plans for this one but they are way off in the future.
d. 2012 Designer Mystery BOM    I just like the colors in this one so it is well worth finishing.

2.   Complete the Wedding Quilt for my daughter and her husband before their first anniversary which is July 20.

3.   Do some free motion quilting on one small project     I know I’ll finish this one because I want to test out the best washing and drying for the wool batting in the above quilt. And I found the Christmas table runner too, so I’d like to have that to use next Christmas.

4.   Complete the two Christmas tree skirts for my daughters before Thanksgiving.

5.   Complete the studio (aka family room) reorganization

6.   Complete the Falling Charms Quilt that is currently on the design wall.

7.  Try some machine appliqué. I have a surefire plan for this one which I’ll tell you about in the next post or two.

 

How about you? Do you have some quilty resolutions for this year?

Quilt on!

2013 Quilty Resolution Results

If you pay any attention to my sidebar, you can see that I’ve had some quilty resolutions posted there for all of 2013. Today is the day I get to evaluate how I’ve done with those this year. In case you are reading this after January 1, 2014 when they will be replaced in the sidebar by the 2014 resolutions, here they are. Results follow each resolution in red.

1.  Complete at least 2 of the 4 BOMs I have going.  Not so good.
a. American Beauty BOM     All blocks completed. Setting triangles made.
b. 2009 Designer Mystery BOM     Handquilting is started, but stalled due to work on resolution number 2.
c. 2011 Designer Mystery BOM     Have completed hand piecing Blocks 1, 2 and 3.
d. 2012 Designer Mystery BOM.    Have completed hand piecing Blocks 1, 2 and 3.

2.   Make a wedding quilt top for my youngest daughter and her fiance   Top is completed and quilting is moving along.

3.   Do some free motion quilting on one small project     Nope. Soon now though.

4.   Complete at least 3 Craftsy classes    Nope. I completed one and started another. I want to move along on this though! And I am now a Craftsy Affiliate.

5.   Complete the studio (aka family room) reorganization     Well, I kind of need to get moving on this one too. People keep throwing stuff in my family room, aka studio.

6.   Make at least 3 pillow cases for donation     Nope, not at all. I really should get going on this.

Tomorrow I will post my Quilty Resolutions for 2014.

Quilt on!

Project Progress

Before I start this, let me remind you to go check out The Blogger’s Quilt Festival if you haven’t already. As I write this, there are 432 quilts submitted and it is not too late to enter yours! Go for it.

I made a little progress on a couple of projects over the weekend. First, I did some hand quilting in the border of my 2009 Designer Mystery BOM. I’m almost to one end. Crosshatching is nice, straight quilting, but when the lines are only 1/2″ apart and your quilt is 78″ wide, it takes a while.

During the Saturday night sports debacle I finished hand piecing block 2 of the 2011 Designer Mystery BOM. I’m proud of how it turned out.

I also added two more rows to the Rail Fence Checkerboard, bringing the total so far to 6 rows. There will be a total of 13 rows when it is done. I’m really enjoying its looks.

I also cut some more of the strip sets into 6 1/2″ blocks. I hadn’t completed that originally because I was concerned I wouldn’t get enough sets if I changed my mind and wanted to make a nine patch. The next two rows are on the design wall. I’ll get the rest up by the end of tomorrow, I hope.
That’s it for today! Except to say Happy Birthday to my lovely eldest daughter! Happy birthday, Janni!
Quilt on!

Ridiculous Fabric Purchases

Okay, I know that ridiculous is in the eye of the beholder (or spouse of the purchaser), but I do seem to be a bit out of hand recently. I blame it all on the Quilter’s Newsletter Christmas issue! Huh?

As I looked through the Christmas issue, I saw a quilt I wanted to make. It was made with panels of Stonehenge’s Christmas fabric and the pattern said that there was a kit available at the Fat Quarter Shop. By the time I looked, it was gone. (They did have some of the coordinating fabric, which I did order.)

Now, I don’t do much Christmas decorating, but I REALLY liked this quilt – despite the fact that it was made of panels. So, of course, suddenly finding at least the panels became a quest. I found them on eBay and ordered the six I would need for the quilt. I also found more of the coordinating fabric, some gorgeous batiks, and some really pretty peacock fabric in the same shop – needed to save on shipping, right?

The bottom fabric in this picture is the eBay fabric. The top are the two that I purchased from the Fat Quarter Shop.

Then I noticed that Hancock’s of Paducah was having a sale on wide (108 and 120) fabric for backing. I really prefer using the wide for hand quilting, a fact I’ve been remembering as I work on hand quilting my 2009 Designer Mystery BOM, so…

Then to make matters worse, the Fat Quarter Shop had a half off sale on Kate Spain’s Serenade line and I’m expecting that to arrive on Tuesday. I seriously have to stop shopping on line! Or at all!!!!!
So here is a little preview of what I’ve been working on in my basement:

I am probably rethinking the half inch crosshatching, but I’m committed now!