Wednesday, October 30, 2019

The Box is Empty!!!!

Last January I had a post about cleaning and organizing my cutting room. I showed you a picture of a box of 1-1/2" strings or strips or whatever you want to call them. I said that a challenge to myself in 2019 was to empty this box. And I wondered how many quilts were in the box?

I've sewn the last flimsy, which measures 63" by 81". This makes flimsy #8 which is also destined for the comforter bash. Most of the quilts I sewed were log cabin blocks. I was tired of log cabin so for this project, I changed it up slightly and made courthouse steps! 

These are regular courthouse step blocks. I started piecing these blocks before Bonnie Hunter made her crooked courthouse blocks.

The strings were picked over and there wasn't much variety. I refused to cut more 1-1/2" strips so I used 2" strips from the 2" strip box to finish them. I always trim to size after they're sewn anyway so I had plenty to trim off this time.

Originally, last January, I sorted the strings into 3 groups, autumn, brights and then the leftovers.

Flimsy #1 - I chose to make log cabin blocks with the autumn and bright fabrics. He measures 92" by 106".

This setting was popular in my area back in the late 90's.

I used all sorts of fabrics for the lighter logs. If it had a cream background, it went in this quilt, even it it had red roses! Some of the logs were more beige than cream but I used them anyway.

I did have to pull some fat quarters and yardage to cut more yellows/oranges. Apparently I don't use those colors a lot because there weren't many strips of those colors in the box.

For flimsy #2 - I chose a barn raising setting with a star in the center. Measures 90" x 106".

Flimsy # 3 is similar to the first quilt but has a star center and measures 90" x 106".

I don't have to quilt the 3 autumn flimsies, they'll be donated the my Pennsylvania grands school auction. Someone there will hand quilt them.

Most of the autumn colored fabrics were gone, certainly not enough left to make another quilt. Now onto the bright strings!

I made two large twin sized quilts with brights that have been long arm quilted 

The first one has a regular barn raising setting with a star center, this is flimsy #4 and measures 70" by 98".

Tammy from the 3 Sisters Quilting quilted both of the quilts. She called this design rain drops.

I saw a star log cabin quilt on someones blog somewhere and thought I can do that. And so I did for flimsy #5 and it measures 67" by 94". 

The quilting design I selected for this quilt was what I called orange peel but Tammy called pumpkin seed.

It's hard to see on the front side but shows up  better on the backing.

Flimsy #6 has traditional strings on telephone book paper to make this 60" by 86" comforter top for the MCC Comforter Bash. 

I'm not an overly patient person and I found removing the telephone paper from the back of the blocks extremely tedious! Not going to do that again!

For flimsy #7, I went back to piecing log cabin blocks and made this comforter top which measures 61" by 83" which also goes to the comforter bash.

I did cut yellows just to give this flimsy some color.

I have been pulling small pieces of yardage and fat quarters to cut for the light strings. I ran out of lights from the box while piecing the first 3 quilts!

So to answer the questions of how many quilts were in the box of 1-1/2" strings, there were 3 queen sized and 5 twin sized quilts. How many quilts are in your boxes of strings?

There were a few strings left, most of them shorter pieces. To use them, I am making 9 patches. I do have a 9 patch project in progress but the progress is extremely slow.

This was a fun challenge but I don't think I'll try to empty a whole box next year. The 2" and 2-1/2" boxes are overflowing too. Next year I'll see what I can make from them. There is no sense in having string boxes if I don't sew with strings.

Linking to String Along, Month 10, Midweek MakersNeedle & Thread ThursdayPeacock Party, Confessions of a Fabric Addict, TGIFF!, Brag About Your Beauties, Finished Or Not Friday, Oh Scrap

Sunday, October 27, 2019

A Stitch at a Time

I'm halfway finished with the leaves on the center medallion from Stars Around the Garden! I think the brown from the leaves look rather heavy. I plan to add some brown circles to the medallion. I think that will add more balance.

My hand quilting on Floral Triangles is progressing.

The right side borders.

I'm quilting the top of the triangles and into the next row. I'm also stitching in the ditch along the horizontal seam line between the rows.

The right half triangle.

Here are 3 more pictures of completed triangles.

My quilt larger than the pattern. I don't remember what the original size was to be and I can't check since I no longer have my pattern. I made double the amount of triangles.

This flower on the right is made with hexdens and was what the original pattern called for. I was very tired of making these and thought they were rather boring.

There were several ladies making this quilt at the Jane Stickle retreat and of course we checked each other's progress. Cindy was making her flowers like the one on the left. I loved it, it looked so much more interesting then the hexdens so I incorporated that idea into my quilt with the 2nd round of applique triangles. The yellow flower in one of the above photos was also made using the circles.

I brought other ideas for flowers with the 2nd round too. You'll see them as I progress further on this quilt.

I did get the flower for Happy Little Things traced off but haven't gotten to the embroidery. I might as well wait until the November block is released then embroider them at the same time.

What do you use for hanging wall quilts? I have a couple hangers that you slide the quilt into, then clamp it tight. This eliminates the need for a sleeve on the back but they're a nuisance to change quilts. 

The hangers were also challenging to put up on the wall. Both my son and son in law told me not to get anymore of them.

My son has installed some curtain rods which seem to work very nice. I do wish the quilts were more back again the wall instead of hanging away 6" but they are much easier to switch even if I do have to add a sleeve.

This is the Infinity bargello wall quilt I made a year ago.

This one was many years back. It's an Edyta Sitar pattern from her first book which is all about HST's.  I can't seem to locate it right now but I know it's here someplace!

This was my first encounter with raw edge applique.

This was made years ago before I had a blog.

The Christmas cactus full of flowers. They will probably last through most of November. The color is more of a salmon than pink, just lovely!

Our maple trees have finally turned color. I'll try to get a picture this week, the orange/red color is so beautiful!

Linking to Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching, Oh Scrap, Bambi's Show & Tell MondayMonday MakingDesign Wall Monday, BOM's AwayMoving It Forward

Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Metro Rings Finish

Late last spring, I took several flimsies to Lori Null to have long arm quilted. They came back home in late September/early October. Now they needed to have the binding to be completely finished.

I sewed the binding on Metro Rings first because it was the smaller quilt at 69" by 88". I pieced Metro rings at the Jane Stickle retreat last April. You can read about it here.

Lori did a lovely job, here's a close up of the quilting.

And a close up of the border which doesn't really show that well.

For backing I used fabric I had on hand. I thought the light green and peach color rather coordinated with the fabrics on the front.

The quilting shows nicely on the backside.

My mother gave me this green fabric years ago, in fact I used some of on the back of a quilt I made son #1 and his bride for a wedding quilt back in 2000.

I think the peach is from her stash too, she had a lot of that '80's peach color.

I added the outside borders to the quilt myself, that wasn't a part of the original pattern. I wanted the quilt to be twin sized so, borders it was!

I'll try to get the binding on the other quilt for next week's post.

Linking to Midweek Makers, Needle & Thread ThursdayPeacock Party, Confessions of a Fabric Addict, TGIFF!, Brag About Your Beauties, Finished Or Not Friday

Sunday, October 20, 2019

Weekly Hand Quilting

Progress has been made on Floral Triangles this week. I finished the row I was quilting.

This was the triangle I was quilting last Sunday.

The pieced triangle and the half triangle edge block.

The left border. The flower is red and the vine/leaves are green.

I've rolled and this week I'll be working on finishing the top part of the triangles. I'll also be stitching in the ditch horizontally along the edge between the bottom row and the next row.

Leaves are being appliqued on the center medallion for Stars Around the Garden.

HQAL - Hand Quilt Along is an opportunity for hand quilters and piecers to share and motivate one another. We post every three weeks, to show our progress and encourage one another.  If you have a hand quilting project and would like to join our group contact Kathy at the link below.

KathyMargaretEmmaTracyDebSusan,  Nanette,  EdithSharonKarrinGretchen  and Kathi

Linking to Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching, Oh Scrap, Bambi's Show & Tell MondayMonday MakingDesign Wall MondayBOM's AwayMoving It Forward,  WIPs On Wednesday

Thursday, October 17, 2019

Stars Around the Garden Blocks

The blocks for Stars Around the Garden are all pieced. The last time I posted about these blocks, I had said there were 3 more to piece, wrong! There were 5 more blocks. This quilt has a total of 14 pieced blocks, not 12.

Here are the last of the blocks.

Twelve of the blocks on my display wall. 

They haven't been trimmed, I'll  do that this week.

These blocks were made with a fat quarter bundle and some other fabrics I pulled from my stash.

This quilt is at a standstill until the applique on the center medallion is finished. That's ok because I have to decide how to alter the pattern to work with the fabrics I have. I have fabrics left from the quarters and a whole jelly roll. I think I know what I want to do, I just need to figure out how to do it.

Linking to Midweek Makers, Peacock Party, Confessions of a Fabric Addict, TGIFF!, Brag About Your Beauties, Finished Or Not Friday

Sunday, October 13, 2019

Slow Sunday Quilting

Every stitch that is quilted on Floral Triangles is that much closer to the finish!

This week I quilted this section. Stitched in the ditch along the edges of the straight borders, then quilted diagonally in the pieced border.

The red flower was also quilted.

Now I've moved onto an appliqued triangle. First I stitch the background fabric then I stitch in the ditch around the applique. I had been doing it the other way but I've since decided this is easier. 

All the blocks on the outside are half triangle blocks, the applique and pieced blocks alternate. 

I'm reaching up 5" - 6". I can reach farther for diagonal lines but my stitches aren't the greatest on curves if I try to reach farther. 

I have no deadline to complete the quilting, it will be finished when it is.

The leaves were prepped for the center medallion of Stars Around the Garden. I also selected the thread for each of the leaves. I did that when it was very sunny out. Colors just don't look the same at night as they do during the daytime.

I use Gutterman cotton thread for applique. There are 60 leaves on the medallion.

It's cooling off. I learned many years ago to bring plants back into the house before it gets cold. The shock of moving from cold into a warm house always sets them back.

I don't have a lot of plants that were outside, mainly my Christmas cactus. This one is loaded with buds. It will be in full bloom the end of October/first of November. The others cacti are more of a pink color, they'll bloom later in the winter.

This little guy was chewed up by a squirrel. I used to set my plants on the steps going up to the porch but several years ago, a groundhog chewed the Christmas cactus. He just chewed them up, didn't eat them. We have over 40 acres of delicious tender alfalfa on our farm, why didn't he eat that?

Since then I put the plants on a bench but I don't think a groundhog could have balanced on the railing to get this plant. It will take awhile but this cactus will come back.

I had impatience hanging baskets on the porch this summer. When the seed heads popped open, they dropped some seeds in the plants. It's nice to have some color now. When the impatience slack off, I'll pull them out but for now they can stay.

Linking to Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching, Oh Scrap, Bambi's Show & Tell MondayMonday MakingDesign Wall MondayBOM's AwayMoving It Forward, WIPs On Wednesday

Sunday, October 6, 2019

Quilting Floral Triangles

I've made progress on Floral Triangles this week. Floral Triangles is what I've renamed my quilt. 

The original name is Sweet Surrender, designed by Sue Cody. This pattern is no longer available. But . . . you do have an opportunity to purchase a raffle ticket to win a Sweet Surrender quilt. Check out this post on the Sew'n Wild Oaks blog. I'm not affiliated with anyone from that guild but since it was a Sweet Surrender quilt, why not?

Now, back to my quilt. I've sewn the bottom of the triangles all the way across the quilt. Look at that lovely texture! I love it! 
I had several comments about how nice this looked quilted 1/2" away from the diagonal line and not stitched in the ditch. I can't take credit for the idea. 

Several years, my quilt made and donated a Sweet Surrender quilt to the Michiana Mennonite Relief Sale. This was the way the charity quilt committee marked the quilt. While hand quilting on that quilt, I decided I would do the center of my quilt the same way.

After quilting 1" diamonds in the Pastor's Attic quilt, I thought I'm not going to mark a quilt with diamonds for a very long time. Never say never! I'm quilting diamonds again 1" apart!

The flower applique for Stars Around the Garden is completed, now the leaf applique will start. I'm planning to use the brown fabrics for the leaves. 

You can't tell in the picture, but I did add some batting to the inside of the flower centers just to add a little poof. I didn't think about doing that until after I had already cut the back out of the center flower so that one won't be poofy.

I can't wait to read all about the Slow Stitching Day Retreat held today at St. Brigid's Villa in Guelph, Ontario. No matter where you are, have a great slow stitching day!

Linking to Kathy's Slow Sunday StitchingOh Scrap, Bambi's Show & Tell MondayMonday MakingDesign Wall MondayBOM's AwayMoving It Forward, WIPs On Wednesday