Sunday, April 30, 2017

Finish #2 for April............

I finally have another finish for April.  It was a month of sidetracks but fun ones so I'm not complaining.  This little quilt is 33" x 43.75" and I will keep this one.  I have a few favorite baby quilts that I keep, the rest I gift.  The fabric is all Aunt Grace's reproduction 1930s.  The embroidery is done on my embroidery machine and the designs were from Cactus Punch many years ago.

Cutting triangles...........

It was a rainy day yesterday.  We got a little over 2" of rain by 10 p.m.  More rain expected today and tonight.
I did lots of pressing fabrics and cutting with my Studio die cutter.  I was cutting triangles plus more fabrics for the batik colorwash squares kits.

All of these different fabrics are in the piles in the photo above.  I can cut 10 layers at a time but I think I only had about 7 layers this time.  I am working with scraps not yardage.

The quarter inch wide scraps are going in the dog bed filler bag.

I pressed the 20th block and put it up on the design wall with the others.  I am leaving a space between the blocks on the wall because I intend to do some kind of sashing, probably narrow and in a neutral light color.  I'll know more when I start playing with choices for the sashing.  Meanwhile I have 15 more blocks to make.

Saturday, April 29, 2017

#20 sewn...........

I sewed #20 block and then tried to do a layout with the last triangles that were previously sewn.

There are 2 ways I can do this.  Now I have to piece 8 more squares of 2 triangles to finish this block.  Nothing is planned so far in the first 20 blocks.  I just sewed random sets of 2 triangles together (always with contrasting values), some batches of 8 alike, some of 4 alike, and lots of miscellaneous pairing.  Then I would just play with them to create blocks.  If I planned each block and then looked for fabrics to make them I would be bored with the project really quickly.  I like spontaneous surprises.  I don't plan colors ahead of time.  I choose groups that I think I will like from the supply of sewn squares and start the layout.  If it isn't working I try another color.

The bunny came to clean up under the bird feeder yesterday morning. He/she was there for quite awhile and then hopped on to eat some weeds.  Luckily the bunnies don't eat any of my perennials.

Friday, April 28, 2017

5 blocks designed.........

I started designing star blocks in the morning yesterday.  This photo is daylight from west windows on a cloudy day.

This one was designed after lunch, also a daylight photo.

I sewed the 2 blocks pictured above and then designed the third one last night.

I was on a roll so I designed number 4 and then sewed 3 and 4.

While watching the weather segment last night I designed number 5 but haven't sewn it yet.

Here are the 19 blocks that are sewn.  I didn't notice the tilt of the photo until I got to the computer and by then I had turned off all of the lights in the basement and was too tired to start over.  Now that I am nearing 20 blocks I wonder if I could stick with it and make 10 more for a 5 x 6 layout or maybe even another 15 for a 5 x 7 layout.  The blocks are 12" finished size.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Basting and more triangle squares.........

Last night I sewed enough triangle squares to make 5 blocks.  Each pile is either 8 alike or 4 alike.  If I don't like some of the combinations when I lay out the blocks I can always make a few more that will work.

I didn't have much ambition yesterday with the barometric pressure change.  We didn't get much rain during the day.  It sounds like the big rain is coming on Saturday and Sunday.
I also started hand basting the redwork baby quilt I pieced in February.  I will ditch quilt between rows of blocks in both directions and also the diagonals along the triangles.  Then I will decide the rest of the quilting.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

More stars..........

I didn't think I was going to make any star blocks yesterday.  It was a beautiful warm day and I had errands to run plus some outside garden work to do.

Last night however I decided to lay out a couple more blocks.

I think I have enough pieces cut for 4 more blocks but I need 5 so I will be doing more cutting on my Studio die cutter.

I sewed the 2 blocks pictured above and added them to the other 13 blocks on the design wall.

Some friends shared some of their compost pile with me so I prepared my raised bed in which I plant my tomatoes.  It is still too early to plant them but the soil is ready.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Dark triangles........

My two friends came over yesterday to sew and I spent the day cutting with my die cutter.  I concentrated on cutting dark triangles since I had only light ones left.  After sewing last night now I have piles of dark triangles left over so I'll have to cut more light ones.  I need to count how many I still need for 7 more blocks.

For everyone asking (and most of you were NO REPLY so I can't email you) I am using 2" finished units for 12" finished blocks.  If I used 1.5" finished my blocks would be 9", 2.5" finished my blocks would be 15" and if I used 3" finished my blocks would be 18".  You can make these blocks any size you want that is divisible by 6 since it is a 36 patch block. 

Here is one more photo of part of my pink back yard.  We are supposed to get rain several times from Wed. night through Sunday so it will probably knock the petals off.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Star blocks........

I designed three more blocks yesterday.  I'm out of triangle squares again so I will be cutting more triangles soon.

 I wanted to get some red into this quilt.

I love the wild fabric in the plain squares.

Here they are sewn and mixed in with the other previously sewn blocks.  At this point I'm thinking about 20 blocks.  The quilt has to be rectangular.  Square quilts are too short and too wide to cover a body on the couch.  Rectangular quilts cover a body better.

Almost all of the triangles left in the box are light so I will be looking for dark and medium batik scraps to cut.

I mowed the grass again yesterday, the second time this spring.  The front yard really needed it.  My backyard is mostly shade grass that doesn't grow as fast.  I mowed about 2/3 of the backyard.  The rest hasn't grown that much.  Next time I'll have to do the whole yard.

I really enjoyed all of the stories about scraps in the comments yesterday.  Unfortunately the Google+ commenters are almost always NO REPLY so I couldn't respond to them.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Creating scraps...........

The reason most of us will never run out of scraps is because we are creating them all the time.  I know people who can throw away pieces this size but not me.

This is my throw away pile and it will go into the bags of stuffing for dog beds.  The strips in this pile are narrower than 3/4". 

I laid out one more star but haven't sewn it yet.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Kits, garden, and soup.........

I am still cutting squares for batik colorwash kits and I'm at the point where I had to put the squares up on the design wall to see what I still need to cut.  I'm at 191 pieces right now and I want to do 300 this time.  I can see I need a lot more green/turquoise/blue and lots of medium values.

I made the collages of photos taken 8 days apart so you can see how much everything has grown.
 The hostas were barely up in the photo on the left.
The peonies have really shot up in 8 days.
Here the hostas in the foreground on the right are barely up in the left photo.  There will be lots more hostas in the next photos I take since some are just peeking out of the ground.

I was lucky enough to get one of the ham bones from Easter Sunday dinner so I made 15 bean and ham soup.

The ham was spiral cut so there was a lot of ham left on the bone.  Yummy!! 

Friday, April 21, 2017

Sewing triangles...........

I had enough triangle squares sewn to lay out one more block. I have one turned the wrong way in the bottom row.  The box only contains light triangles so I spent some time cutting medium and dark triangles.
I sewed enough squares for four more blocks with a few left over.

I took photos yesterday afternoon to compare with 8 days ago.  I didn't have time to make them into four 2 photo collages so I'll show you one today so you can see how pink the backyard is.  I'll do the collages for tomorrow.
Here is a question for people who live in or near NC.  My son in law sent this photo of a bush that grows near streams and he asked if I knew what it is.  I have never seen it before.  Can anyone identify it for us? 

Thanks for all of the input.  He decided it is Mountain Doghobble.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Two more blocks...............

I made blocks 7 and 8 last night.  I can't go any farther until I sew some more triangles together into squares.

In some of the blocks I repeated the same fabric many times and other blocks have totally random fabric choices.

Here are blocks 1 through 8 with a little spacing since I was thinking of a narrow sashing between blocks.

Some hostas are tight spirals.

They are fun to check every few days.  I have some that have grown to full height and are now spreading out.  This group is still half spirals and the rest opened up more.

I have about a dozen different varieties of hostas.  We got some rain yesterday so I need to get out and photograph the back flower beds today.  Everything is shooting up so fast with the warm days we have had.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Sewing again......

Thanks everyone for your comments yesterday about the daylight photos.  I ran out of time to answer everyone personally.

My company left at 7 a.m., a friend came over to use my design walls at 9:30 and I cut more squares for my colorwash kits, I mowed my front yard for the first time this spring, and then I did some laundry.  Last night was a TV night so I sewed some 2 triangle squares so I can continue making the star blocks.
While the clothes were in the dryer I laid out my first block.
I ended up with time to sew it.

I had time to layout a second block but was too tired to sew it.

A few days there  ago were just a few small plants of Lungwort/Pulmonaria but with almost an inch of rain Saturday night and then warm sunny days a bunch more popped up and they are really filling in the space.  You may have to click on the photo to enlarge to see all of the blooms.