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

Not Again!

Once again I did not yet post last weekend’s progress! I am apparently an incredible slacker lately.

Last Saturday during the football game, I made some progress, but also a major mistake that I’ll have to fix during tomorrow’s game. Sigh.

This is the unit that is wrong. I used the wrong center fabric. (I wondered why I had to cut those 2 1/2 inch squares when I had been so careful with my cutting.)

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That, of course, makes these units wrong. I will fix them during the game also.

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And this is the total of what I completed last Saturday. Not so very much. It was a great game and I kept forgetting to stitch.

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I also had some extra hand stitching time on Sunday evening when I played chauffeur for my husband, but I have no pictures of those units. The good news is that it leaves me set up to complete this block tomorrow even with the re-doing of the first units. So watch for pictures of the completed block this weekend.

In case you were wondering how many pieces are in this block, here’s the cutting chart. (I’ll let you do the addition!)

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In nephew’s wedding quilt news (although maybe I should quit calling it that, since his bride is the one who is most excited about it), I am plugging along on the last four blocks. I need to cut and make some more flying geese, and then assemble the outer parts of those blocks. Then I will get to the part where I add lots of negative space to make the quilt 90″ square. I’m looking forward to that part! I hope to get the top completed this weekend and get it off to the quilter by Tuesday.

What are you up to this weekend?

Quilt on!

My Progress in Quilting

Doesn’t that sound official? I think it sounds like way more progress than I have actually made.

So, last Saturday during the football game (and a little after because I really wanted to finish it) I completed Block 9 of the 2012 FQS Designer Mystery BOM. Isn’t it pretty?IMG_3364

Then on Sunday, I got to sew for about 4 or 5 hours. I made some blocks following the directions in the pattern I’m sort of using for my nephew’s wedding quilt. I sewed to the point where I had three rows of block sections to finish to finish my four blocks and realized I just couldn’t do it. Here’s why.

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Yes, it is a bit blurry and it doesn’t look too bad, but here’s the problem. The designer of this pattern used two flying geese units to make an hourglass block. It is almost impossible to match those bulky flying geese points. And, yes, this one doesn’t look awful, but some of the others didn’t look quite so good. Luckily, I know another way to make hourglass blocks. They came out much better the second time around but it meant that I spent Monday evening unsewing and Tuesday evening recutting and resewing. And the next few pictures show you Tuesday’s results.

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In the actual quilt, the blocks will be much farther apart than this. I’m picturing lots of white space.

If I had thought more carefully before making this second round of blocks, I would have probably saved myself quite a bit of time because I would have realized those flying geese would not be the best choice for making hourglass blocks.

Next up in the wedding quilt, the last four blocks (I hope).

Do you look at patterns more carefully than I did?

Quilt on!

Blogger’s Quilt Festival Entry #1 – Hand Quilted

AmysCreativeSide.com

It’s Blogger’s Quilt Festival time! This year I am posting two quilts in the festival. This one is in the hand quilted category.

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Now, if you are a regular reader of this blog, I’m betting you know what quilt this is. Yes, it is the famous Wedding Quilt, renamed “Spotts Sea of Love” upon completion. There’s an entire category on this blog called Wedding Quilt Progress if you really want to delve into its history, but here’s what we used to call the Reader’s Digest Condensed Version.

Our youngest daughter became engaged in mid-December, 2012 and, of course, asked if I would be making a quilt. Duh! By mid-January, she and her fiancé had chosen the pattern and colors for the quilt (the pattern is Aegean Sea by Judy Martin from the book Stellar Quilts). I asked them if they wanted it machine quilted, in which case they could have it by their wedding day, or hand quilted, in which case I guaranteed it by their first anniversary. They told me to do whichever I preferred so hand quilting won!

Star Blocks for wedding quiltThese are the first units assembled for this quilt, the stars for the centers of the super blocks. They are purples and yellows. All the fabric in this quilt are batiks.

IMG_1239Here are some other building blocks of this quilt.

Grand BlockThis is the first completed Super Block. See the other stars hanging around waiting for their turn.

IMG_1280These are the borders.

IMG_1356And here it is as I worked on it in my first hoop. That hoop was kind of flimsy and this very heavy quilt ended up destroying it so I got a different hoop to finish off the quilt.

IMG_1801This is the quilting in the large areas between the superblocks. Otherwise, the quilting is all stitch in the ditch. I wanted to emphasize the Greek Key kind of designs (or square spirals as my son-in-law calls them), because they were one of the reasons the newlyweds chose this pattern.

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It was hard to get good pictures of this quilt. Here it is on my bed, but still not easy to see.

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Here it is with the new owners as quilt holders in the family room (currently the theater room) of their new house. This was taken before the room was painted red and the furniture moved in. The newlyweds moved into their newly purchased home the week after their first anniversary.

Name: Spotts Sea of Love
Size: 90″ X 90″
Pattern: Aegean Sea by Judy Martin from the book Stellar Quilts
Fabric – batiks
Batting – wool
Quilting: In the ditch and some marked straight line and medallion
Quilt on!

Catch Up time

I think it is time to play a little bit of catch up here! Remember the Books on Monday post that didn’t happen because of an impromtu visit to DisneyWorld with my eldest daughter? Well, here is a little bit of what happened since then.

We only spent two days in the parks – Magic Kingdom and Disney’s Hollywood Studios. I’m not going to bore you with lots of pictures of what is in those parks, but I am going to just mention a couple of the places we ate. Since there were only two of us, we did a bit of splurging.

We had dinner on our day at the Magic Kingdom at Be Our Guest, the restaurant in the Beast’s castle. Reviews claim that it is the best food at DisneyWorld and I agree. (Reservations are a must! We felt fortunate to have scored some!

This is how the napkins are folded! Anyone know how to do this?

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Here is a fairly dark picture of the dining hall:

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And here is the view out the window next to me (apparently it is always winter at the Beast’s!):

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At the Hollywood Studios, we ate at the Hollywood Brown Derby. The food was pretty good but I think we were both disappointed in our choice of sandwich. We were not disappointed in the dessert we shared though!

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While walking around (19,449 steps according to my FitBit) the Magic Kingdom, I had a phone call from my longarmer. Falling Charms was ready to be picked up! When I got home, I picked up the quilt and it is seriously all I can do to keep from running downstairs, trimming it up and binding it.

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Also, my prize (yes, I’m a winner) from Very Lazy Daisy arrived yesterday!

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I think I need to practice free motion quilting a lot before I quilt this gorgeous top!

And, last but not least, a Wedding Quilt update! I have begun to quilt the borders!

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This is good because their anniversary is the 20th and I promised! Also, the official moving date for moving into the home they have purchased is July 26th. I’ll be out of town but I’ve already been instructed to make sure that Daddy brings the quilt so that it’s there for their first night in their very own home.

You can picture me hand quilting my fingers to the bone!

Quilt on!

It’s Time

Yep, it is time for me to become a quilt sweatshop around here! There is too much to do and somehow I keep getting distracted and not doing it! What do I need to do? Oh, let me see now!

  • Piece the top for the church quilt! Not enough blocks came back finished to make the king sized quilt but we have plenty for the queen sized and I have a really cool idea for the borders. The backing for this quilt needs to be pressed also, but maybe I can get Amazing Amy over here to do it!
  • Finish piecing the Falling Charms quilt top. I’m like two rows away. I should get it done and get over it.
  • Finish hand quilting the Wedding Quilt. Yeah, there’s a deadline on that. And, yes, I should have no problem getting it done if my hands cooperate. If!
  • Finish cutting all those 1 1/2″ squares that I committed to do for the charm swap. This, too shouldn’t be a problem.
  • Piece the back for the Falling Charms quilt. Yes, I said piece the back. I know. I don’t piece backs usually, but I thought I’d use up the left over blocks and the left over layer cake squares on this one. Just for fun.
  • Finish piecing the DPW blocks.
  • Clean the sewing room. That may include some quilt finishing along the way.
  • I have two Christmas tree skirts to make. Or more exactly, one to finish and one to make. By Thanksgiving.
  • My SIL doesn’t have his own quilt. This is a horrible oversight.

No, I don’t really have a plan of attack. Just to get myself downstairs to sew as often as possible for as long as possible and when I’m upstairs to work on the Wedding Quilt as much as possible. So, yeah, that’s the plan. Pictures as I accomplish things.

Quilt on!

Quilting Update

Over the past week or so, a lot has happened in the basement/studio! I have been knocking out a few Disappearing Pinwheel blocks and sewing together the first 6 rows (well, maybe it’s the last 6, since I started at the bottom of the design wall) of the Falling Charms quilt as I go.

Here are the most recent DPWs:

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Houndstooth Twins

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Floral Twins

IMG_1729Stack of pinwheels waiting their turn.

On Wednesday, Carolyn and Amy came over to help prepare fabric for the church quilt. Amy did her favorite pressing job, I did the cutting, and Carolyn did the sorting and bagging (which Amy also helped with once the pressing was done). We got all of the block kits prepared for the pinwheel blocks for the church quilt and got a pretty good start on the flower blocks. Tonight I wrote up the directions for the pinwheel blocks, so I’ll start handing those out tomorrow at church. Here’s the pinwheel block (not all of the greens are these colors):

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I spent about four hours today downstairs making DPWs, sewing Falling Charms blocks together, sewing the green pinwheel together, and making 10 more pinwheels for future DPWs. Then I spent some time this evening doing some hand quilting on the wedding quilt, so I have started March-a-long with a bang.

Quilt on!

Saturday Stitiching

Click here to view my post for the

Blog Hop Party with Give-Aways

It’s Saturday for another hour or so, and I thought I’d just update you on today’s Saturday stitching.

In case I haven’t mentioned it before, I really enjoy hand sewing something during football games. I can get quite a bit accomplished between plays. This week I got to do some quilting on the infamous wedding quilt. Unfortunately, I noticed this horrible version of piecing:

IMG_1519I’m sorry about the shadow, but the left side of the bottom of the star doesn’t line up and it drove me nuts for awhile. (It is much easier to see the mismatch if you are quilting that line, trust me!) I’m over it now, but it did bug me for awhile.

Last week I finished block 3 of the 2012 Fat Quarter Shop Designer Mystery BOM.

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I didn’t get a chance to cut any more of the blocks for my two BOMs which is why I used the football game to hand quilt a bit. Maybe next week…

And now you are updated!

Quilt on!

The 400th Post

Welcome to my 400th post! I think I’ll celebrate with a giveaway, but it won’t go live until Thursday, November 21 as part of

Blog Hop Party with Give-Aways

But until then, I’ll just bring you up to date on a few things.

First, the wedding quilt – I’m still plugging away at it, but I’m not making very fast progress since most of my hand quilting time (as far as my hand holds up) has to be spent finishing the church quilt. So the wedding quilt is going very slowly, but that should pick up in a couple weeks when the church quilt is completed.

The Falling Charms Quilt – It still looks like this:

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Now that I have my new iPhone with the better flash system, the colors look more like this:

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I think the colors are closer to true here. And no more actual sewing has happened on this one.

Then there’s the saga of the boot:

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Yeah, it’s still there. I tried wearing the brace instead for parts of a couple of days but the supports hit me in the wrong places on my ankle and caused pain – so I have my PT’s suggestion that I take the plastic out and try to replace it with cardboard or something that isn’t quite so stiff. (A couple of layers of Timtex perhaps?) She also suggested that I may want to reshape it slightly so it hits in different places. That might be on tap for tomorrow.

Christmas tree skirts – I am still working on cutting the Judy Niemeyer. I got to one shape (a large one) that has a curved bottom and it has me so intimidated I haven’t gone back to it. Soon now, though. It’s looking like they may not be quite ready for this Christmas.

Labor Day Sew-In Wrap Up

I’ve been seeing other people’s wrap up posts about the Labor Day Sew-In this year and figured I’d add my own, pitiful as it is.

This is the list that I started with:

  1. Some handwork on the Wedding Quilt (of course).
  2. Finishing paper piecing the five pointed star I was working on.
  3. Preparing the paper pieces and the fabric for the Christmas Tree Skirt lovely eldest daughter, maybe even cutting some fabric.
  4. Maybe paper piecing another five pointed star – I need three.
  5. Maybe (if my hand holds out) hand piecing some BOM blocks during the Michigan game on Saturday.

And here are my results:

  1. Never touched the wedding quilt.
  2. Finished paper piecing the five pointed star. IMG_1447
  3. Preparing the paper pieces and cutting fabric for the Christmas tree skirt – never even started. That was going to happen in the basement quilting room and after Friday night my knee and ankle hurt too much to do the stairs safely.
  4. Maybe paper piecing another 5 pointed star – nope. See above.
  5. Maybe hand piecing some old BOM blocks during the Michigan game. Yep, I managed to work on one block, but not finish it. I will most likely finish it this week and cut another one for next week.

And there you have it. What I really did mostly (when not visiting with precious family) is read. I managed to read the entire The Hunger Games Trilogy over the course of the weekend. It’s been a long time since I’ve actually read a book in one sitting (which I did with Catching Fire) and that is actually my preferred way of reading so that was fun.

I hope you did more with your Labor Day Sew-In projects than I did with mine.

Quilt on!