Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Buried in Scraps

   I tried to store some 1-1/2" scraps last week and couldn't close either container (storage had already increased to 2 bins).  Something had to be done!  As a result, my sewing room is exploding with strips of fabric, the floor is covered from strips spilling out of those bins, and the 6 foot cutting table has a 12 inch spot free for any cutting.
    I looked at those bins and couldn't see any possibilities.  I had just read a blog post form someone else, that talked about sorting their scraps into color ways.  Maybe that would help.  So, I sorted and sorted, and sorted, and sorted………You get the picture.  I sorted into an autumn group, a red group, a neutral group and a black and white group.  The rest went back into the bins.  At least the lids would close now.   Now, what to make?  I love doll quilts, so they immediately came to mind.
I decided to stay with the Civil War theme for now.

I love those double pinks!

These are just from four-patches.  I haven't even thought about
 all of the other options.

 Of course, log cabins are always a good solution for 1-1/2" strips.  So I tried a quilt as you go version of a table runner.  Its even finished!  All of the doll quilts still need quilting.

Lately I've been attracted to the braid patterns.  Chevrons are so popular right now, so I decided to give that a try.  Here's a table runner from a braid pattern.  I think this could be quilted as you go, but didn't try it this time. 

I'm going to make an attempt to link up with Oh Scrap!  I love the name of Cynthia's blog and she always has great ideas for scrap quilting.  She is having a linky party this week, so here goes.  

Hopefully this works for you.  She has some great ideas so you can 
Keep on Stitchin'

Monday, June 1, 2015

Mystery Quilt Photos

     May was a busy month and this post should have been done two weeks ago, but here goes.  Quilt Camp happens in Arrow Rock the first week of May, thanks to my neighbor, guild sister and friend Paula.  I have been teaching a Mystery Quilt class for her for the past three years.  It is one of my favorite weeks of the year, partly because of the class itself and partly because it also involves some of my favorite people being my houseguests, as they attend camp every year too.  They are mostly the same people I see at Winter Sew-In, so it gets us together at least twice a year.
     This year I taught a version of a rail fence quilt, adapted from a quilt featured in American Patchwork and Quilting a few years ago.  I saw it online and went from there. I try to use precuts in this class, so adapted it from 2"strips to 2-1/2" strips.  It goes together fast and IMHO, makes a good-looking quilt. I called it Country Proud.  Some of my students took my title for it as a patriotic statement and made it in RWB and they were great.  Actually, every one of them turned out wonderful.  Here is my version:

     And here are some of the beginnings from the class.  Finished ones can be viewed on the camp Face book page, Arrow Rock Quilt Camp. I apologize for the quality of some of the photos.  I'm primarily a sewist, not a photographer.
 Black, white, grey and red.
 Desert tones


Blue and yellow

Country Proud!

Made from strip stash!


I hope you enjoyed our little class quilt show.  We had a lot of fun!   I always learn as much from my students as I teach, probably more.  This year, I had all experienced quilters, but in previous years, I have had people new to quilting.  This is the class Paula recommends to new quilters, so I try to keep it simple, so they are not overwhelmed.  Our experienced quilters like it though, because it goes fast and can be a flimsy before the day is over, if there is not too much visiting, snacking and shopping.  In other words, they just have to

Keep on Stitchin'

Monday, April 13, 2015

Spring Fever

    Missouri is bursting with spring.   The daffodils are blooming, trees are leafing, and I'm having trouble staying in the sewing room.  Saturday was a beautiful day to be outdoors, so spent a lot of it stitching the binding on my jelly roll race quilt from National Quilting Day.

The top photo is the finished quilt.  I saw this variation on Google images and thought it was a unique way to use a jelly roll race quilt.  I quilted it on my DSM in a Baptist Fan design.  This was the first time I had tried this and really enjoyed it, something about the rhythm of the stitching.  This quilt will probably go in the guilds QOV project.
     I just have to share my latest acquisition for my sewing room.  I recently visited my daughter in the Kansas City area and she asked what I would like to do while there.  I demurred for a bit, then admitted I would love to see the IKEA store, which has opened there in the last year.  She, as well as the granddaughters, thought that was a great idea. ( I usually ask to go to JoAnns).  We made a day of it, with Swedish meatballs in the cafeteria, followed by a leisurely trip through the store.  Amazing!  I could do an entire post about the store, but will desist.  Suffice to say, I sent some American dollars to Sweden.  Here was my main purchase, these basket racks that fit under my ironing table.
They now hold my WIP's (works in progress) and give me more storage in some wasted space under that table.  A win-win for the sewing room.  I also bought two LED lights, one battery operated and one electric.  Both are clip-on style and are already in use.  
     Here is my dilemma for the week.  I have started quilting on my DGS's graduation quilt.  I am currently quilting the stars, but am unsure how to quilt these Homeward Bound blocks.  They make a diagonal pattern across the entire quilt and I would like to emphasize that feature.  Any ideas?  

Any help will be appreciated.  Meanwhile, I will keep on stitchin' those stars.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

National Quilting Day

Our guild had a sewing day on National Quilting Day with a carry in dinner and a jelly roll race.  It was lots of fun, I used some stash and have a QOV quilt almost done.  
Here's some pictures of the race in progress.


And some of the finished products.

Mary did patriotic and came in third.

Pam was the winner!
Cynthia used all solids and came in second.

Marsha's turned out very pretty.
Gina used a black strip for every other one.
Here's mine.  I used some strips I had cut for QOV quilts from last year.
Kathy is behind there somewhere.  She used a 2-1/2 inch square between every strip.
And in all their glory!  A very productive day.  
I wish I had taken a picture of our dinner spread.  It was pretty impressive too.
There were other guild members there, but not all participated in the jelly roll race.  We had a nice group and had a great day!  

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Spring! (finally)

     Spring has finally made an appearance in Missouri.  A week ago, Saturday, we had our last (I hope) snowstorm and when it was over, Spring took hold.  It has been in the 60's all week and seems odd to see little piles of snow in sheltered spots.  But, that's Missouri.
     I spent last week in Atlanta, at a sewing retreat with friends from all over the country.  Represented were Georgia, Missouri, Mississippi, Colorado and Arizona.  We had a fun week and I finished the blocks for the graduation quilt for the grandson.  Putting it together was saved for home and the design wall, but it is now officially a flimsy.
I have since added a border of red, all I need is backing and I'm ready to quilt.  

 My cup overfloweth, or rather my 1-1/2 inch scrap bin overfloweth.  I have a plastic drawer and a shoebox bin for that size and neither would close anymore.  So what's a girl to do?

I recently saw two tips on the Stashbuster yahoo group about string blocks and decided to try them again, utilizing those ideas.  One tip was to use the old Medicare booklets that come every December for the foundation papers.  I certainly had some of those.  They should have been cleaned out and recycled, but I was able to unearth some from the bookcase and desk drawer.  

The other tip was  to use a triangle for that corner.  I always find that corner rather fiddly, adding those little short strips.  They never seem to come out right.  I had some Kona red scraps left from the graduation quilt, so made my triangles from those. 

It makes a nice size, 9-1/2 inches.  The only problem I can see is that the pile of scraps is not dwindling fast enough.  I guess I'll just 
Keep on stitchin'

PS:  Grand Illusion is quilted, bound and on a bed.  Woohoo!

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Rocheport shopping and starting the graduation quilt.

    This past Sunday, I joined my favorite group of rug hookers for a little hook-in in Rocheport, MO.  They have a great wool shop, White Horse Antiques.  The owner, Marcia, teaches rug-hooking and this is where I learned.  She has a monthly hook-in during the winter months and I try to go every chance I get.  On this occasion, I went a little early so I could buy some rug binding from Marcia, but I also wanted to stop by one of my favorite antique shops.  I always find something I like there.  The owner looks for sewing collectibles, so that inventory changes all the time.  Here's what I found;

This adorable little cockatoo pincushion.  So cute.

These aren't sewing related, but they were still a nice addition to my collectible cabinet.

I have looked for a Scrabble game with wooden tiles for years (for a price I was willing to pay), and they had one.  They also had these little wooden circus toys.  The graphics on them are wonderful.  They have a different animal on the reverse side.  The horse has a zebra on the reverse and the elephant has a bear.  I would love to know what kind of a set they were.  They almost look like puzzle pieces, but don't fit together. 

Back to the sewing room.  Here's what I've been doing.
Twenty of these adorable nine patches went to guild meeting this week for a swap.  We take some every month and at the end of the year, we take home the same number we have contributed.
I did a lot of cutting from my 2-1/2" scraps so I'm ready to sew some for next month.  They will make great leaders and enders.

These are bingo boards.  We had the directions for making them before the meeting, then played bingo on them for fat quarter prizes.  Now they will go into a charity quilt.  I thought this was a great idea. 

What's on my design wall this week?
I have started my grandson's graduation quilt.  

It will have some pieced stars, as well as some stars with embroidery.  In Logan's case, it will mostly be sports related embroidery designs.  
I don't have any quilt designing software (and don't want any).  My designing is done with a book of traditional quilt blocks and a piece of graph paper.  A simple quilter has simple ways.

The star, of course, is Sawtooth Star and the alternate block is Homeward Bound.  I thought that appropriate for a young man leaving home for college.  We always want them to find their way home again. 
What's on your design wall?


Monday, February 2, 2015

Grand Illusion flimsy

Hallelujah!  The Grand Illusion top is finished.

  Not exactly as Bonnie designed, but it works for me.  I turned the border strips the opposite way, so they would be next to the narrow pink border.
Now to buy some backing and decide on the quilting.  And…..
 decide what to do with this green blocks I didn't use, and……..
cut up the scraps into usable sizes.  Be sure to go to http://quiltville.blogspot.com/2015/01/grand-illusion-mystery-link-up.html to see everyone else's links.  They are all beautiful!

     Meanwhile, I have been thinking about the graduation quilt I want to start for our grandson.  Deciding on a pattern has been on my mind for several months.  I used a square in a square block for his brother's graduation quilt, so don't want to use that.  They both love sports, so I need to include some machine embroidery on some of the blocks with sport designs.  I made these sample blocks yesterday with a plan in mind to include some embroidery in the center of the star blocks and alternate with the "Homeward Bound" block.  (I am sure that block has some other names.)
I like the graphics and it should make a masculine looking quilt.  I like the name of that block for young man leaving home for the first time, off to college and the big world.  

We have a cold snowy day here in Missouri, so I hope to 
Keep on stitchin,