Sunday, September 30, 2012

An Old UFO

When I was straightening things out in the basement some time ago, I came across these big flying geese blocks that I had put together several years ago.  With them was some fabric I had bought for the icicles and snowflakes that is quite icey looking.  I put them up on the wall and thought - why don't  I finish this little thing.  So I found a pattern for an easy snowflake on the internet and cut those out along with some icicles.  I hadn't spotted the fact that  I needed an extra block at the bottom before but when it came time to fuse the snowflakes, etc., on it became obvious.  Look what I found in my stash to use as that bottom block - perfect!  I had planned to use the mottled blue as a border until I found the snowy looking fabric at the bottom of the blues box.  I am totally pleased with it.  Still have to sew on the borders then it will be ready to sandwich and quilt. Will raw edge applique the fused pieces as I quilt.
This is the picture found on the web that I printed out  and used as a guide for the little hanging.  My finished one will be approximately 15 x 40.

Here is the tree in front of my house--all golden and glorious.  Dropping its leaves at a rapid rate now, it is an ash tree and one of the first to loose its leaves.  Fall really is here!  Enjoy.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Seeing Red

On my Pinterest board, I Love Red, I have this picture of waterdrops on red that is super pretty.  Decided to put it in my Kaleidoscope Kreator software and see what happened.  The following pretty kaleidoscopes happened!

Each time you make one little movement in the program, it changes the picture so dramatically.  I am sure there are lots of  ways to use the results of this program, but I just use it for the eye candy it produces.  Fun to spend a few minutes playing with it occasionally!  Looks like it is going to be a beautiful autumn weekend - enjoy!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Some New Fabric

A few days ago, I ordered some Christmas fabric from Connecting Threads.  I have ordered from them for a long time now - more books than anything else.  A few years ago they started selling their own line of fabric for a really reasonable price of about $6.00 per yard.  Haven't ordered much fabric from them and was a little disappointed with some I ordered quite a long time ago.  I hesitated about ordering this - however, it came today and I am really pleased with it.  It has a nice soft feel and the colors are so much prettier than in the catalog or on the their website. 
I ordered a fat quarter sampler of the entire line and several yards of the white with the multicolored stars.  Also I sent for some half yards of some of the small print darker solids for binding, etc.   Thinking maybe tablerunners, wallhangings, etc.  Let's see if I carry it through!  Very pretty stuff!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Lots of Ripping

After much ripping and many trips up and down the stairs (very good exercise for this old gal), the little top is finally together.  Not quite the way I had it originally laid out, but after getting it all done, I suddenly discovered a big mistake which meant I had to take one row completely apart and switch out rows  to get the zig zag effect right.  So I also had to dismantle part of the rows.  Then in getting them back together I ended up with too many light ones together in one spot and the same fabric in adjacent rows on the right side.  Change it again?  No way!  It is kind of pretty even thought I have no idea where it will go.  A good size for the top of a table.  I am just going to add a dark binding after quilting and call it a day.

This is what awaits me in my basement.  Don't know why I am so messy - but I swear I am getting worse all the time.  Colorful mess, though!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Hannah Has a New Post

As many of you know,  my youngest granddaughter, Hannah,  has been in the Peace Corps  for two years in Mozambique and is just 71 days from the time for her to return home.  She has maintained a blog over the years and posted to it when she could.  This morning there is a beautiful post reflecting on her time in Kaunda and her thoughts as she approaches the time to leave her "home" for the last two years.  It made me read it through tears and with great pride and love for her (as I have for all of my granddaughters!).  I know some of you that follow my blog read Hannah's and I know you will enjoy this latest post which is written so beautifully.   Just click on her picture on the sidebar and it will take you to Singing Under the Southern Cross.   Enjoy Hannah's words and thoughts.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Just a Little Wallhanging

I spied this pretty little piece on Pinterest and think it is lovely.  Decided I would make some blocks from my batiks.  This actually is done in Kaffee Fasset's fabrics and I have quite a few but not enough of the pastel ones to get the same feeling.  So batiks it is.
I cut the blocks 5 inches square and the smaller ones are 2 1/2".  Sewed diagonally across the smaller square then trimmed the excess.  It wastes fabric, but the ease of doing it this way is worth it to me.  You could use the leftover triangles for some other project. 
Here are part of the blocks up on my basement wall.   The coloring is different than the top one, but I think there is still nice contrast.  I was going to make a trip out to Park Bench and pick up some quarter yards of batiks but decided I should be able to complete a small hanging - even a large one - with all the fabric residing in my basement! 

I have another stack of blocks ready to sew so will get back at it.  Love working with the different colors!!

Monday, September 17, 2012

On the Homestretch

The binding is on the little quilt and it will be ready to go to Sit and Sew tomorrow where I will get some of it done.  Thought I would show you my method - I don't miter the corners.  Started doing one side at a time when I first started quilting over 35 years ago and, although I have done a few mitered corners, I seem to stick with this.   The most awkward part of mitering is joining the binding on the middle of a side.  I guess if I stuck with it I would love it.  Will not say you can't teach an old dog new tricks as this old dog learns new tricks every once in a while.  Just used to this. 

Here is the front of the bound edge.  The tab leftover will be trimmed and tucked under.

The finished edge of the little birdie quilt.  A bit tricky to do, but so is the miter.
The front of the little quilt.  I, like most of you I am sure, find binding the least favorite part of quilting but the part that really sets the quilt off.  And it is a mindless task that you can do without having to concentrate.  A great piece of handwork when you are with other quilters. 

Sunday, September 16, 2012

A Tip You Probably Know Already

Such a gorgeous day!!  I should be outside but there isn't anything to do out there and I am winding up the little quilt. All is done except for the border.  I was pretty frustrated in marking the border.  I am out of washout markers except for an old disappearing one that actually disappeared before I could get the  quilting line sewn.  Marked one with a water color pencil - but it was too dark and, although I did get it out, it took some rubbing.  I have a chalk marker which worked but the line was so light that I had a hard time seeing it when sewing backwards.  Doing this free motion and it's a piece of cake going toward the outer edge, but not so easy going toward the body of the quilt.  The chalk mark just was too dim to see especially with the quilting foot in the way.  Maybe a trip to Joann's for a wash out marker - not too excited about that.  Then a light bulb moment!  Painter's tape!  It's a tad slower but the ease of following the bright blue edge makes up for it and there is no mark to make disappear.  The tape is an inch wide and so is my little ruler so that makes a nice spacing for the quilting lines.  Should  be able to finish the quilting this afternoon and then sew the binding on ready to be hand stitched.  The little quilt should be ready to go to Sit and Sew with me on Tuesday.  I love, love, love light bulb moments!!  Don't have too many of them.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

I Guess I Have Taken a Break

I had a phone call from my brother in Florida this morning  - he was wondering why I hadn't posted for a spell and decided to call this morning if there was no post up.  All is well but it was good talking to Bud!   I guess it is one of those times that most bloggers go through when you get a little stale or lazy or think you have exhausted some of the things you usually base your posts on.   I have been working mainly on the little quilt for Molly's baby and won't post any more pictures of it until it is done.  (It is almost done!!  One block left to quilt and the border).  There is also the fact that the last couple of years it takes me about twice as long to get things done - work a while, sit a while - one of the results of getting older.  Am not complaining!  At least, I do get some things done and enjoy what I do just as much as always.  Then the rehab three times a week in the middle of the day throws a monkey wrench in the machine.  It's for a short time each day and I don't know why it makes a difference but it does.  There again, I think it's doing me a lot of good - I can do 16 minutes on the treadmill at 2 mph and am doing well on the other machines, also.  Enjoy my respitory therapist, Anne - she is a sweetie.  The time goes quiickly and I will sign up for maintenance after the sessions are through in a couple of weeks.  Will go twice a week then, and there is a broader window for the time to be there.

So those are my excuses just in case it matters to anyone.  I took a couple of pictures of the rather pathetic plants in my usually pretty patio plantings.  You can see the elephant ears did very well - it will be a job getting the bulbs out of the pot!  They could be saved for next year.
A couple of pots by the edge of the patio.  These are quite healthy, but the blue salvia is probably not a good candidate for container gardening.  I do love it, though.
The pot on the table I see from my sliding door.  The pretty blue stuff that was there orignally is long gone.  I never have much luck with that in the fact that it never lasts all summer.  However, the rest of the flowers are looking good.  I had some gorgeous geranium hanging baskets and I still have them, but they look so sad.  It is time to start taking some of the spent plants down to the woods.

We are having gorgeous weather and it is beginning to look like favorite time of year. 

Monday, September 3, 2012

It's Being Quilted

The last couple of days I have spent getting the backing pieced together, the top and backing pressed and all the stray threads trimmed off, and then taping the backing down on my table, adding the batting and topping it off with the quilt top.  Then comes the pinning and pinning and pinning.  I think this may be my least favorite part of quilting but it's all an absolute necessity.  So here is the first block all done - all the pieces outlined and then my usual loop the loop quilting pattern.  I am using some Libby Lehman's The Bottom Line #60 thread in the bobbin and Sulky Invisible on top.  Very happy with how it looks.  Looking forward to quilting around all the animals and silly birds on the quilt.   Will end this with a picture of one of my favorites after it got it's smile!

He's ready!