Thursday, June 29, 2017

Circle of Squares Flimsy

I should have started another row of Nearly Insane this week but I just wasn't in the right frame of mind. I have to really concentrate on those blocks. I guess I just wasn't ready to concentrate because I just didn't have the necessary enthusiasm needed.

I decided to sew the Circle of Square blocks together into a flimsy. The blocks finish at 12". I decided on a checkerboard border before the outside border. She measure 47" across the center. 

There are different yellows in the blocks but they all look the same in the picture. Oh well.

She'll get quilted sometime. I think she looks bright and cheery. You can find the pattern on toefeather's blog. The pattern is just for the blocks. I don't know how she finished her quilt.

Someone had commented that Circle of Squares would make nice scrappy blocks. Here is a link to the scrappy Circle of Squares quilt Lisa made

I had made these blocks as part of the Scrappy Rainbow Challenge, just to see how they pieced and looked. This was a fun block to make and very simple too. I can see myself making more of these, but not this year.

While I was outside taking pictures, I snapped a photo of the volunteer violas in a flowerbed. I always think they look so happy.

I don't plant them, they just reseed themselves every year.

Linking to - My Quilt Infatuation, Finished Or Not Friday, Confessions of a Fabric Addict, TGIFF!, A Quiltering Reader's Garden, Crazy Mom Quilts, Show Off Saturday

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Circle of Squares

I've been admiring the Circle of Squares block on several blogs ever since I saw it the first time. I don't know who's blog that was but Kathy has been making this block for her one of her RSC projects. I would like to make these blocks but I'm already making two separate projects for the RSC, I don't want to add another one to the mix.

However, something came over me when I was prepping the Star Dance blocks. I decided to prep one or two blocks for Circle of Squares! The pattern is found on Toefeather's blog.

Here they are, 8 (yes 8) Circle of Square blocks.

I don't know if I'll make Circle of Square blocks every month. I did think of a way to use 8 blocks in a crib quilt. Time will tell.

For your information - I learn so many thing from reading other blogs. We shouldn't call ourselves sewers (which can be confused with pipes in the ground that have human waste running through them) anymore. We should call ourselves sewists! I'm sorry I don't remember who's blog I read that on but it sounds so much nicer.

Linking to - Quilter's Monday,  Fiber Tuesday Sew Fresh QuiltsMy Quilt Infatuation, Scrap Happy Saturday

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Still Hand Quilting

The last row of churn dash blocks is finished except for the very top HST! 

The white squares too.
Now I've rolled and started quilting the top HST of the CD blocks and the triangle blocks. 

I also quilted the bottom edge of the square in a square border.

I got the triangle blocks and the top HST's quilted! 
The quilt top is pinned through the batting onto the backing now.

This week I'm going to try to get the first square/square border completed . . . you'll find out next week if it happened. 

Linking to - Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching, Show & Tell Monday With Bambi, Em's ScrapbagLove Laugh Quilt, BOM's Away, Quilter's Monday, Esther's Wednesday WOW!

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Star Dance Blocks

I put a lot of miles on my sewing machine last week working on many projects. This week we're putting all our efforts into making hay so I'm out in the fields driving tractor. This week's posts were written last Saturday and are highlighting what I worked on.

I took Nearly Insane down from the display wall because she became too large for it. My wall looked so empty so I pinned all the Star Dance blocks that I had pieced so far to the display wall. Don't they look cute?

Several weeks ago, a friend called while I was sewing and we chatted for a long time. As we talked away, I kept noticing the stars and thinking the cutest star was the green star (bottom center) that had 2 different fabrics in it. I decided to change things up for the June stars.

I added red to three of the blocks.

These blocks are all yellow but I mixed the fabrics. In the top right block, I made the center with yellow fabric and the corners with white. These changes don't show very much.

The final 3 have the same fabric in each block.

The yellow stars brightens up the rest of the stars. I see I need to make more purple stars.

This pattern is called Star Dance. The stars finish at 4". My quilt will be larger than the pattern.

Linking to - My Quilt Infatuation, Finished Or Not Friday, Confessions of a Fabric Addict, TGIFF!, Crazy Mom Quilts, Show Off Saturday, Scrap Happy Saturday

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

What's On The Clothesline?

Last week we had planned to dry bale hay but the weather didn't cooperate. We changed our plans and this week we're planning on wet baling and wrapping the hay. (If you want to read about what I'm talking about, read this Word Press post from several years ago.)

I put a lot of miles on my sewing machine last week working on many projects since we weren't making hay. This week's posts were written last Saturday and are highlighting what I worked on.

At the Jane Stickle  Retreat in April, I pieced 3 crib quilts. I didn't talk about them when I showed what I sewed at the retreat. I decided to wait and display them when they were completed.

When I returned home, I pinned basted them, then set them aside, ready to be quilted whenever I had time. Last week they were quilted, bound and washed.

Three quilts (same pattern) quilted 3 different ways.

My favorite way to quilt crib quilts now is with spiral quilting. I just like the way the spiral compliments the straight edges of the blocks. 

The dotted yellow fabric makes this quilt come alive.

For the back of these quilts, I used flannel. I needed to add pieces to the red.

Spiral quilting is easiest if you just line up your foot next to the quilting and just keep on going.

Unfortunately I didn't have enough dotted yellow fabric for the next 2 quilts and substituted the stripped fabric. It didn't look the greatest, but it was what I had on hand. It does look better now since the quilts are quilted.

The 2nd quilt was quilted with straight line quilting. I just did it trying to go straight. The lines are anywhere from 3/4" to 1/4" apart.

And the back of the quilt.

The first two quilts were quilted with my Elna Excellence 720 sewing machine. 

The thread I used on all 3 quilts was Gutermann 100% polyester thread. The spool hold 1094 yards of thread. This thread was also used in the bobbin. I find white thread works well with most quilts.

The 3rd quilt was quilted on my Baby Lock Melody machine. I wanted wavy lines on this quilt. My Elna does have a curved line decorative stitch but I can't elongate it like I can on my Melody.

Wavy line quilting. 

And the back of the wavy line quilt.

The pattern for these quilts came from the Jan/Feb 2013 issue of Quiltmaker magazine. In all their 2013 issues, they took a block from one of the quilts in that month's issue, and enlarged it to crib quilt size. The name of this pattern is "Go Baby, a big block baby quilt".

What changes would I make? Next time I would add a border to the quilt.  Supposedly this quilt is 40" square when finished but after washing, they measured 38" square. I personally feel that is too small but they are what they are. They will join the pile of charity quilts that are accumulating for donation in the fall.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Hand Quilting

This week much progress was made at the sewing machine and not so much at the quilting frame. 

Two more blue churn dash blocks are partially quilted and two more white squares are fully quilted. Slow progress, but still it is progress.

Linking to - Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching, Show & Tell Monday With Bambi, Em's ScrapbagLove Laugh Quilt, BOM's Away!, Esther's Wednesday WOW!

Thursday, June 15, 2017

More Yellow 4-Patch Blocks

The original plan for this week had been to spend it making hay. However, the weather has not cooperated, so I've been stitching as fast as I can before I need to head out to the hayfield.

After I finished the last row of Nearly Insane, I prepped the pieces for the additional 13 yellow blocks I need for my RSC blocks. I added other yellows than the original 15 blocks so they would look somewhat different. Sorry the picture is dark.

I laid part of the blocks out on the display floor to give you an idea of the tentative plan for the quilt. This is a small version of what will eventually be a king sized quilt.

Obviously it will look nicer when all the colors are in the quilt.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Another Nearly Insane Row Finished!

I've finished the rest of the blocks for the current Nearly Insane row under construction. There were 11 blocks in this row, 6 of which I had completed in my last post about NI. I didn't have to piece the half blocks because I had pieced them earlier.

This block was fairly easy to piece.

All the blocks in the group were fairly easy, except #44.
I've decided this flowered fabric looks best if I just use a small amount at a time.

Sometimes I look at the pattern and wonder how this is going to work. I just keep sewing and they come together just fine.

Originally I had used the white fabric completely on the corners. But then it just stuck out and didn't blend in with the rest of the blocks. I used flippy corners and added the dark triangle corners.
I'm not fond of this block but I don't hate it.

What I don't like is the corners. I think I would like the block better if the  stripes ran diagonally instead of the way they do.

She's staying though

This is block #44 and was a challenge (for me anyway!) to piece.

I don't mind set in seams but not with pieces this tiny. I divided the background fabric in half and paper pieced them along with the diamonds. It worked! 

Because I was so busy worrying about the stars, I didn't put enough thought into the center pinwheel. I should have used a dark blue in place of the light blue. Oh well, I'm not going to redo her. Finished is better than perfect. 

Block #44 originally had 52 pieces but with the changes I made to piecing her, there are 76 pieces.

I'm keeping track of all the pieces in this quilt. Son #2 is an accountant. I'll give him the job of adding up all the numbers.

This is what my Nearly Insane looks like so far. The row I just finished is on the right side. I haven't attached the row to the body. I'm making the center in 2 halves. I'll sew them together when the 2nd half is finished.

I'm trying to make a row a month. This row finish is May's row because I started this row in May but I finished her in June. I'll try to make a June row this month if I have time, it depends on how the 2nd cutting of hay making goes.

Linking to - BOM'S Away, Quilter's Monday, Fiber Tuesday, Sew Fresh Quilts, TGIFF!, Crazy Mom Quilts, Show Off Saturday, Quilting is More Fun Than Housework!

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Slow Stitching Sunday

More batting has been attached to the batting in the quilting frame. Progress in hand quilting has started again.

This is exciting because I can see the first square in a square border! I estimate it should take me maybe a month to finish this quilt, but who knows what all will happen between now and the finish.

I've started quilting at the right side and quilting my way to the center of the quilt.
The white squares are quilted. And part of the blue churn dash blocks are quilted. See the square in a square border peeking at the top edge?

Linking to - Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching, Show & Tell Monday With Bambi, Em's ScrapbagLove Laugh Quilt, Esther's Wednesday WOW!

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

4-Patch Blocks - Rainbow Scrap Challenge

The grandchildren are gone and I'm back to sewing again. We're trying to finish up the 1st cutting of hay on our farm, so I need to sew something simple and easy. Something I can sew, put down and then come back to and not have to figure out what I was doing. Which is definitely not the Nearly Insane blocks.

I pulled out my yellow 4-patches and pieced 15 blocks. I didn't have a lot of different yellow to work with so some of the fabrics are repeated in each block.

I was organizing the books on my bookshelves last week ago and I found a tablet of graph paper that had been my mother's. I had forgotten about it. I now have my RSC quilt sketched out to see how many blocks I need of each color. I'm just piecing the colors, not gray or darks or the multicolored blocks. I need 28 of each color so I see 13 more yellow blocks happening this month. I will also need to catch up with the previous colors too but not this month. I want to have these all blocks pieced by the first of December so I can sew this together flimsy together and send her off to the long arm quilter in timely fashion next winter.

Linking to - Quilting is More Fun Than HouseworkSew, Stitch, Snap, Show!My Quilt Infatuation, Finished Or Not FridayCrazy Mom Quilts, Confessions of a Fabric Addict, Show Off Saturday, Scrap Happy Saturday

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

What's On The Clothesline?

I'm slowly getting things switched over from the winter routine into springtime. That includes washing the winter throw quilts and putting them into storage until next winter.

I took pictures of these quilts while they were on the clothesline. When I dry a quilt on the line, I always hang the quilt so the back side of the quilt gets the full sun. I don't care if the backside gets faded. I've turned the quilts around so you can see their faces.

This snowflake quilt is an Edyta Sitar design and was made with a fabric kit. The longarm quilting is by Sherryl Tobias, Nappanee, Ind.

Many years ago I made this small scrappy Christmas pinwheel quilt because I didn't have any Christmas quilts. The longarm quilting is by Vicki Hunsberger. She quilted poinsettias on the quilt with a variegated red and green thread.

I sewed leftovers for the back. I had some friends tell me they liked the back of the quilt better than the front. It's too much of a hodge-podge for me.

Several years ago, a member of the quilt guild brought each of the members a fat quarter of fabric. 

She challenged each of us to bring a fat quarter for each member that would coordinate with the fabric she brought. We were then supposed to make something with those fabrics. This is fall quilt. We use it as a light-weight comforter on our bed in the winter.

I used flannel on the back and hand quilted him. The quilting shows better on the back than the front.

Since these quilts are going to be put away, I took my spring throw and hung her on the line to freshen up before taking her place on the back of the couch.

I made her in the early 2000's. The outside border was a very pretty medium-dark blue with a flower design. I had purchased the fabric at Wal-Mart. Even though she was never in direct sunlight, the fabric still faded. I still use her though. 

I had purchased these blocks to be embroidered at a Ben Franklin store in Bowling Green, Ohio when son 2 and his wife were attending Bowling Green University. 

The backing on the quilt is muslin and the hand quilting shows nicely.

While I was taking pictures of the quilts, these 3 Guernsey heifers ambled over and wanted their picture taken too.

That's all for today!

Linking to - Fiber Tuesday, Sew Fresh Quilts

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Another Row Quilted

Before the grands and their parents arrived last week, I finished quilting churn dash row 7 and the bottom halves of the white squares.

As usual, the pictures look the same.

As you can see, the top row of white square are all marked with the same design.

Before I can roll, I need to whip stitch more batting to the bottom of the batting in the frame. There isn't time to quilt with the grandchildren here anyway, I can quilt after they've left.

Enjoy your slow stitching!

Linking to - Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching, Quilter's Monday, Show & Tell Monday With Bambi, Em's ScrapbagLove Laugh Quilt, BOM's Away, Quilter's Monday, Fiber TuesdayEsther's Wednesday WOW!