Tuesday, July 23, 2019

Playing outside in the nice weather.............

The weather was so beautiful yesterday that I mowed the front yard and did lots of weeding in the back garden.

I did get one postage stamp block sewn in one direction, cut a lot more little squares and laid out the next block ready to sew.
Then I started looking for more suitable small print scraps.  I tend to keep one project's scraps together in a plastic bag and found these Liberty prints that were colored by Kaffe.  They are the end pieces from cutting equilateral triangles.  I can get one square out of each.
The Tiger Lilies are starting to bloom.  I have some in the front and some in the back garden.







I have 3 pots of red Petunias on the front porch.









I have 2 batches of these Lilies, one group in the front and one in the back garden. 

We have a new Cable company putting in fiber optic cable in our town.  As I drove north yesterday morning I passed their truck 3 houses from me and there was a funny smell.  When I came home I found out they had cut the gas line.  I feel very fortunate that they didn't blow up our houses.  I was worried that they would cut through my Comcast cable but didn't even think about them cutting a gas line.  I sure hope they have qualified people on this job from this point forward because it seems to me that this crew didn't know what they were doing.

Monday, July 22, 2019

Postage stamp block report...............

I completed 4 more of last week's 7 postage stamp blocks.












That makes a grand total of 6 out of 7 finished for the week.








Here are all 20 blocks so far.  My original plan was to make 63 blocks for a quilt 56" x 72".  Now I'm wondering if I would be happy with a quilt 48" x 72".  That is a good ratio for a rectangular quilt.  Decision will be made later.
The number 7 block was laid out but didn't get sewn last week.









My backyard garden is just starting to bloom.  Last year on this date it was in full bloom and my daughter took pictures of me with my quilts among the flowers.

Sunday, July 21, 2019

A couple ideas............

It was fun to read all of your stories about your UFOs or fixes for my dilemma on this project.  If you missed that post go back here.  

Jan suggested sewing the units as triangles (look down the center of the photo) rather than the Y shaped pieces at the left.  Two triangles could then be sewn together as diamonds and rows of diamonds would be sewn together.  There is still one Y seam making the triangles but the sewing together of pieced parts wouldn't have any Y seams.  There are 2 different triangles, mirror images of each other, with dark. medium, and light strategically placed.

Sharon S suggested making a half hexagon quilt like I have done with large half hexagons.  They are sewn in vertical columns, easy sewing.  She suggested unsewing the pieces that are done but there are several hundred loose half hexagons in the plastic bags so I wouldn't waste my time unsewing anything.

Now I just have to decide if I want to work with these fabrics.

It finally started cooling off a little around 5 last night but the humidity was still there and it was hard to breathe in it.  I pulled weeds for awhile and then gave up and will go back at it today.

Here are blooms on my Blackie Sweet Potato vine.  I remember how surprised I was several years ago to see the blooms since the green ones hadn't ever bloomed.
My Rudbeckia is late blooming this year and the plant is much smaller than in previous years.  It is Commonly known as Brown Eyed Susan.





There are many varieties of Brown Eyed Susans and this is one of the plants my friends gave me.  There are buds forming on the top of all of them.




My Tiger Lilies are late blooming this year too.  There are only a couple flowers open so far.  Hopefully we will get a little rain with the cold front coming through so there will lots more blooms.

Saturday, July 20, 2019

Borders............

My 2 friends came over to sew yesterday and my niece dropped by to show us 4 quilts she finished.  It was so hot we decided to brown bag it for lunch instead of going out.  

I pieced the center of this little quilt (33.5" x 39.5") quite a few years ago and chose the borders a couple years ago.  Yesterday I finally cut the borders and sewed them on.
Here is another view of the wall with enough of the border fabric for the back of the quilt and a piece of leftover batting that is the perfect size.  There is no excuse now for not finishing it soon.

One more extremely hot and humid day and then we are supposed to get some relief.  The overnight temperature Thursday night in Chicago was 81 degrees which set a new record for the warmest low temperature ever recorded there.

Friday, July 19, 2019

How old is your oldest UFO?...........

This one dates back to about 1989......yikes that is 30 years ago!  Jinny Beyer made a charm quilt and named it "Inner City" and I wanted to make it.  I looked for it last night in some books but didn't find the picture.  A charm quilt isn't made with 5" squares......no that is another "modern" use of the word charm.  A true charm quilt historically has no piece of fabric repeated.  One of the charm quilts that I made with this same assortment of fabrics has 961 pieces in it but I don't know if that many pieces are here with it.  All of the fabrics are from the 1970s and 80s.

I have been reading up on minimalism and about parting with everything that is really excess baggage.  It is explained that it doesn't matter who gets the thing you are disposing of, what matters is that it leaves your house forever.  That has always been a hangup of mine being a child of the 1940s, knowing that there is someone out there that wants or needs every single thing that I am discarding and I have to make sure it gets to them. How ridiculous, right?  So this project has been in a box......


I sewed my pieces by machine.  The seam sewing 2 hexagon halves together can go edge to edge but every seam after that has to start at the intersection of 2 seam allowances and end at that intersection with backstitching so it won't come undone.
It is a royal pain to sew this by machine but I demonstrated it at many classes and therefore have 30 of the 3 hexagons sewn into units (pile at the center right in the first photo.  There are 2 bags of half hexagons and some hexagons sewn together.

Now should I just drop the project in the dog bed stuffing bag, take it to Goodwill, or what?  Do you all have this problem too?

Thursday, July 18, 2019

Progress on two............

I sewed 10 more zipper blocks.  I have 57 blocks made now.  






I sewed the one postage stamp block that I showed on my design board a couple days ago.










6 more colors have been cut for the postage stamp blocks.  I need to make 5 more this week.






I went out in the bright sunshine yesterday morning to take photos of my flowers.  Coneflowers are here and there through the back garden.










The lilies seem happy in this part of the garden.  They get morning sun and then are in the shade all the rest of the day.

Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Fun with fabric...........

Yesterday turned out to be a very busy day so last night I just took 2 stacks of fabrics off the shelves and sorted through them and re-stacked them in a different order.  This is one of my favorite cute prints.  You can see the date on the selvage, 22 years old.  I still remember the day I bought it.
This one is 19 years old and by Kona Bay fabrics.  The leaves are quite large and I haven't used any of this piece yet.











Then 14 years later (5 years ago) they came out with a very similar print in a smaller format and the print turned the opposite direction on the fabric.  I have this one in 4 colors.  I think I need to use some of these fabrics this month.  Maybe I need to set aside one day a week where I go to the shelves and pull a fabric I have never cut off of and find some companion fabrics and make a few blocks.

My pacemaker appointment went well, no irregularities in my heartbeat and the battery still has between 4.5 and 5.5 years of life.  I told the technician that I have been tired so she tweaked the pacemaker to hopefully give me a little more energy.  It's an amazing little gadget and mine works 100% of the time.  The pacemaker only kicks in when it is needed so some people get a longer life out of their batteries because the pacemaker is working less often.  I'm not sure how they fix it when they my battery runs out.