Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Flannel quilt progress............

I'm glad I have more than one quilt in progress so there is always something to work on.  I made 2 more of the paper pieced sections and then decided on this layout.  I have a few more seams to sew and it will be a finished top.  I wanted it to finish at the same size as the other flannel quilt so I ended up with just 2 rows across the top instead of the 3 that I thought I would do.  I think I have enough of the same backing fabric to use on this one too.

Monday, March 30, 2015

I thought it was the final layout.......

I moved blocks for over a half hour and thought I was done.  Now after seeing it on the computer monitor I may have to move a few blocks.

These are the blocks that I pulled out.  I found one more on the table so there were 5 instead of 4.

I am a math person, love math, but blocks on the diagonal take a lot of figuring so I am using this aid from C&T Publishing.

This will give me the size of the finished quilt with and without sashing.

This is where I usually get lost, the diagonal width of the sashing strips.

The setting triangles are always tricky but this guide gives me the cutting size.  Since I like them a little over-sized I might round up to the next even inch.

Occasionally a publication will have some errors, usually caught by readers who then alert the publishing company.  If you go here and go to the bottom of the page under support you will find Errata & Updates.  There was a PDF file you could download for this book and print out a new page to paste over the original page.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

4 Patch Posy/Posey/Posie..............

I couldn't get motivated to finish anything yesterday so I cut another 4 patch posy/posey/posie.  Yes you will find it spelled all 3 ways if you do a search for the pattern/method.  This fabric is from the days before there were quilt shops so mid to late 70s probably.  It was folded right sides in like they did all clothing fabrics back then.
Here are the first 12 up on the design wall, not sewn together.

I was able to get 28 blocks cut at 6".  Sewn together the blocks finish at 11".  There is a good variety of centers in the blocks.  I don't like square quilts so I have to figure out what to do in the last 2 blocks for a 5 x 6 layout or just use 24 of the blocks for a 4 x 6 layout.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Need to work on.........

I need to make some final decisions on the Blazing Star blocks (cut with Studio die cutter).  I have decided I'm not making any more blocks at this time.  Second decision, it will be on point.  I need to spend a few hours deciding which 4 blocks won't be in the quilt and what the final arrangement will be.  I also have to decide if I want to quilt and finish something this month.  My chances of that are slim with just 4 days remaining but I'll think about it today.

Friday, March 27, 2015

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

The Hunter Star quilt top is finally sewn together.  I put the last 4 blocks up on the wall and then spent a half hour moving blocks around until they were pleasing to my eye.  It ended up 47" x 71".

When 4 blocks come together it makes multicolor stars.
This also shows the true colors in the quilt better than the whole quilt photo.

Our twice monthly sewing group met yesterday and I paper pieced flannel arcs to use in the next flannel quilt.

I had only printed 6 arcs so I need to decide how I am going to place them so I know how many more I need.  I was thinking of maybe a half circle on both sides and a full one in the center.  Then it will be filled in with more squares around these blocks and maybe 3 more rows of squares at the top.  Right now it is 56" wide and I want the length to be at least 72".

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Lesson results...........

I had never made the 4 Patch Posy, One Block Wonder or any of the Stack n Whack type quilts.  One of my friends has taught the 4 patch posy many times so she offered to teach it to my other friend and I.  Here are some of the 7" blocks I got from the toile type print shown below. I wanted to learn the basics of it before I used one of my 'pretty' fabrics.

This red cactus is the one I said was on its last bloom about a month ago.  It fooled me and has a bunch more buds.  I'm happy to see the white one bloom again too.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Last 4 blocks.............

I cut and sewed the last 4 blocks for the Hunter Star quilt.  Tomorrow I will play with the arrangement of these with the other 20 blocks so I can sew the top together.

Today is a play day with my 2 friends.  One of them is going to teach me something new.  There are some patterns I have had no interest in and now I want to learn this one.  Stay tuned.....

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Winter wonderland............

We got 3" of snow and the temperature struggled to reach 30 degrees so church sewing circle was cancelled.  We didn't have any deadline projects so it didn't make sense to go out in this.

That gave me a chance to work on the snowball quilt.  I got the borders around the center square and sewed the side sections on it and then the top 3 row section.  I put it back up on the wall and looked at it and decided I didn't like the bottom strip on the center square and started looking for replacements.  That took a couple hours to come up with the one I finally used.  I unpicked the one I didn't like, sewed in the new one and then sewed on the bottom 5 row section.  I ordered 2 yards of the border fabric so I can't do any more until that comes.

Monday, March 23, 2015


I have chosen the last 8 fabrics for the Hunter Star project and cut a strip the size I need to cut them with the GO! die on my Studio die cutter.

Last night I finished sewing six size medium preemie outfits. (For the pattern, see yesterday's post for the link).  If we don't get too much snow I will be taking them to sewing circle this afternoon where they will get their ribbon ties inserted through the neckbands.

I also worked on the border around the fruit basket insert on the snowball quilt but wasn't quite finished so no photo.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Fruit basket fabric........

The fruit basket fabric arrived yesterday and it matches the colors in the quilt even better than I thought it would.  I bought it from QuiltHome.com and their site has pretty true colors.  You can also enlarge the thumbnail to see more of each print.  I was really happy to find this in the Specials section at a great price.  I got the 4 sections sewn together and now need to work on the inner border around the focus fabric.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Preemie sewing...........

My fabric order with the other basket fabric in it is being held hostage by a Postal sorting center (they are notorious for holding up delivery) so I couldn't continue working on the snowball quilt.  I was planning on basting one of my quilts but when I looked at the calendar I realized I needed to cut the preemie layettes for our church project.  The table I cut the long pieces of flannel on is the same one where I baste quilts.

(the pattern for the preemie gowns at the bottom of this post) 

Friday, March 20, 2015

Progress on snowballs........

I called a committee meeting....well it was really my two sewing buddies that came over....and I got some good opinions on my project.  This center fabric looks way better with it in person than in a photo and is the same print as the beige one a couple days ago on my blog.  The other fruit basket fabric should come in the mail today so I can still audition it.

I have sewn the top 3 rows together, took out some dark snowball blocks and put in 6 lighter ones.  The fabric to the right is a possible border fabric.  It is the new "Dream" Kaffe print in colorway gray.  We chose the color for the outer border of the insert and I have ideas for the inner border of the insert.  Today I will sew the bottom 5 rows together and the 2 nine block sections on either side of the insert.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

More playing.......

While I wait for my fabric order to arrive I decided to try out my new 8" clamshell die and see how easy (or hard) they are to sew together by machine.  It isn't too bad so I will work on it between other projects.  I also sewed together some 4 patches for another quilt I'm working on.  I helped a friend baste a quilt yesterday morning and then we went out for lunch so it was a fun day.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

More decisions...........

In a couple of Kaffe's books he inserted a center square or rectangle of either a large print fabric or an applique.  I thought I would play around with that idea.  If you go back to this post and click twice on the photo of the book pages, the top book shows one of them.  I have this print in 5 colors but thought the green background might be best.  The orange background might be nice too.
This is one of Phil Jacobs newer prints of a basket of fruit.  I just ordered a piece of it in more multicolor which I think might be better.

Now I have finished filling in the bottom row of the previous photos and added one more row below that.  I have this print with pink and rust backgrounds too and haven't tried them yet.

There would be one or two borders around the panel to make it fit.  I also have the option of putting the bottom row at the top so the panel would be centered instead of where it is.

This is so much prettier in real life.  With both red and green in it, the camera has a hard time getting it right.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Warm day........

I did more cutting yesterday morning and by afternoon it was 72 degrees so I went outside to do some yard clean up.  The weatherman last night said we won't get another day that warm until the end of April.  It will be in the 40s today.  This is spring in Illinois.

Last night I got corners sewn on 16 more snowball blocks and now I need to move all of the blocks to a different design wall, the one with the best lighting for photographs.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Cutting more pieces..........

I'm cutting for three quilts at the same time.  These two shapes needed the same width strip for the die cutter.  The third quilt which I haven't shown yet takes a different size strip.
I pressed the seams of the triangles and placed all of the blocks on the design wall.  This is a shot of the center of the group of 67 blocks that I have sewn so far.  Two friends are coming over today so I'll continue cutting hexagons.  I don't have any idea what size quilt this will be when finished.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Decision made.......

I liked both green prints the best from all of the choices I tried but neither one was exactly right.  Then I got the idea to use both of them.  I think they look good with both the light and dark octagons so they might all be in the same quilt instead of 2.
Last night I sewed corners on 58 octagons while I watched Netfix.  I have 40 more sets of corner triangles cut so now I need to cut more octagons.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

More auditions.....

I like the bottom corner triangle choice (and it is the one Kaffe used in one of his quilts) and I thought maybe the green was what makes it work so well.  After trying three more green fabrics I decided it is the dark background with light dots that is the winning combination.  I do like the top green one too, the other 2, not so much.

I tried the top green with the light blocks too and it is OK if I want a more solid look to the quilt.  I have one more green to try today.  While I was down in the basement I cut other pieces with my die cutter.  I have a pile of scraps that needs taming.

Recently I got a little package in the mail from my blogger friend Sheila.  She came to my color class in NC in 2012 so I have met her in real life too.  She makes these teeny tiny zipper pouches and had the link to the pattern and a video link here on her blog.  I thought they were so cute but decided no way was I going to make one.  I was so excited to get one as a gift from her!

Friday, March 13, 2015

Auditioning corners...........

I started cutting triangles to audition for the snowball corners and then decided to check back to my 3 favorites in his books.  Click on the photo to enlarge and see the corner fabrics he used.
There are 5 different triangles on the dark version and 2 different ones on the light version.  The green was one that Kaffe used.  I tried the brown with white dots and flowers of the same print.  I wanted to try some lighter values but I know now I will try a few more tomorrow.  I think I will also mix the dark and light octagons together in one group and see if I like it.

Thursday, March 12, 2015


I need to move these pieces to a design wall that has better lighting for photos.  I had a migraine part of the day yesterday so didn't do much.  The good news is that my migraines only last a few hours now compared to the 3 days when I was younger.  I pressed fabric and cut more pieces last night while I had 2 hours of TV entertainment.  I added 5 more of the darker octagons.  I am cutting these with a GO! die on my Studio cutter.

I added three more light octagons.  I need to put away a pile of fabric before I cut any more.  Today is the twice monthly sewing group so I will probably sew the cross seams in the flannel quilt while I'm there.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

More octagons...........

I added two more fabrics in the light colored octagons.  There are several snowball block quilts in Kaffe's books.  In "Museum Quilts" the octagons are mostly light to medium in value and the corners were done with several different colors of shot cotton.  His darker block version in another book has corners made of the same fabric all through the quilt.  I haven't been able to decide what fabric to use for the triangles that will be sewn on the corners and that is the only reason I haven't finished one of these quilts yet.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Playing again......

I was pretty tired last night after 3 days of walking many hours on the concrete floor in the basement.  I decided to just have some playtime with my favorite guy (Kaffe).  The diamonds are leftovers from when I made my bordered diamond quilt.  I wanted to see the variety so I would know what colors to cut to make a small couch quilt.  The octagons on the right will probably be 2 different quilts and again I wanted to see the variety that was already cut.  I am cutting a third Kaffe quilt which will take several weeks because I like at least 50 different fabrics in a quilt.  While I am cutting that one I will also cut pieces for these quilts.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Only cookies..........

All I have to show for yesterday is the 2 batches of cookies that I baked for the art quilters group today.  The rest of the afternoon and evening was spent picking up and putting away my stuff to make room for 7 of them.  I had dies for my Studio cutter on 3 different tables as well as all of the fabric that I have been playing with recently.  It is a good thing I have a deadline now and then to get everything put away.  And then............I can't find it when I look for it later.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Second time around...........

In my hurry to get this top sewn together I didn't notice that I was one strip short of the complete design.  Since I had a half strata left I fixed that and went ahead and added another strip to both sides so it now measures 74" x 103".

And here is another closeup of that wonderful center.