Thursday, February 28, 2019

A source............

I have talked many times about hand basting my quilts but it has always been difficult to find a source for the needles and thread that I recommend. My friend Beth who is the owner of the "I Have a Notion" online store is now carrying both of these supplies (plus many other great items).  Click here to go to her website. Click on Store under the header.  The thread is under "other threads" and is the smaller size spool which is enough to baste several quilts.  The needles are under Notions and then Hand Stitching.  There are 25 needles in a package.

Click here for a previous blog post where I talk in detail about my basting.

This is the second blooming of my white cactus.

I am so happy to have 3 cacti blooming at the same time.  It has been the longest time without blooms that I have ever had with my cacti.  Usually it is more continuous from October through April where this year there was a 2 month break.

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Progress on projects...........

I have 27 pineapple log cabin blocks in progress, 4 different stages here.  I will have enough dark ones to sew the dark blocks into a quilt (35 blocks).  I have 12 light blocks started.

I put the rest of the Kaffe 6" bow tie blocks up on the design wall and it is filled so it is time to move them to a double wall.  This wall has poor lighting so these blocks will look a lot better in a different spot.  I will make one more batch of blocks and then try some different layouts.

I bought this cactus last winter and all of the buds promptly fell off and it hadn't bloomed since then.  I was really happy to see buds on it now.

This is my old faithful light pink cactus with its second set of buds this winter.

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

A sunshine break.............

I had pressed my yellow batik scraps last week and yesterday was finally the day to make some crazy pieced blocks.  I cleaned out a scrap box last week too and there were some black and white batik pieces in it.  I decided they would look great with the yellow.
I used my 10.5" ruler to trim them.

So much better trimmed but the camera wants to blue-tone the photo.

And then I trimmed the second one.

Much better.

Sunlight through the branches.

I have a pile of yellow batiks I pulled last year about this time to make a quilt and I never decided on a pattern.  This year it is going to get done, and that will give me more scraps for more blocks.  Win-win!

I have been watching a couple of my cacti as they set buds and are getting ready to bloom.  This one surprised me though.  The bloom was on the other side of the plant facing the window.  I noticed it when I opened the blinds yesterday morning.

Monday, February 25, 2019

The other project............

If you have been reading my blog for a long time you probably know I'm working on more than one quilt at a time most of the time.  This is my other quilt, Kaffe collective fabrics in the bow tie block.

I turned every other row around for a different layout.  I'll probably try more layouts as time goes on.  I have more blocks ready to put up on the design wall now.  The blocks are 6".

I cut more pieces for the light pineapple log cabin blocks but didn't get any piecing done.  Here I have grouped all of the color coordinated blocks together and have the multicolor blocks on the top 2 rows  and at the bottom left.  Now maybe I need to make 2 light pineapple log cabin quilts, one multicolor and one color coordinated blocks.

Sunday, February 24, 2019

6 more blocks added......

21 light pineapple log cabin blocks now on my Friday night design wall.  

I started out cutting from my scraps and when I ran out of pieces large enough to lay on the die (7.5" x 3.75" and 9" x 3.75") I went to my piles of batiks that are 1/4 yard or less.  I cut for over an hour to have some new dark pieces to work with.
Right now every other block is one that is mostly color coordinated with the ones between being just multi-scrappy colors.  I need at least 14 more blocks for the minimum size I would want to make the quilt.  

Here are photos of the 4 new color coordinated blocks.

Saturday, February 23, 2019

Lights and darks...............

My view of the design wall yesterday.  I have decided to make 2 quilts.  The dark one is 7 blocks tall and 5 blocks across on the bottom row and that is the proposed size now, approximately 50" x 70".

I tried something different with the 4 new light blocks.  Can you spot it?  See below.  

I only got 4 of the 12 started blocks done because I had to cut more fabrics.  I was tired of repeating the same ones over and over.


Friday, February 22, 2019

Pineapple progress...........

This was my view from my sewing machine last night.  I put the 12 new dark blocks up on the design wall.  I still haven't removed the light blocks as a border since I haven't made any decision of layout yet.  I wasn't sold on the light blocks as border before but now that it is 4 dark blocks wide in the center I do like it better.
I had 2 light blocks started before and now I have 10 more started so there will be 12 blocks to put up on the wall tonight if all goes well today.  If I make 2 separate quilt tops, one dark blocks and one light blocks, I will need 35 blocks of each.  If I use the light blocks as a border I will only need to make 1 more dark block and 3 light blocks after I finish the group I am working on.

Thursday, February 21, 2019

4 blocks done.............

I spent hours yesterday pressing fabric and cutting pieces for these blocks with my GO! pineapple log cabin die.  I got one more round on all 12 blocks but only finished the last strip and corners on 4 of the blocks.  My bobbin thread ran out and it was close to 11 p.m. so I stopped at that point.

Luckily the temperature got above freezing yesterday and melted off the inch of new snow with ice pellets on top of it.  It sounds like we are going to get a couple sunny days now with temperatures above freezing.

Clarice, I showed 2 quilts on that blog post and I don't know which you are asking about.  Could you email me with the address on my sidebar?

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Errand day and sewing...........

Yesterday the sun was shining and the roads were clear so I ran some errands.  It was still below freezing but didn't feel so bad with little wind and lots of sunshine.

Last night I started working on pineapple log cabin blocks again.  On the left are 4 light blocks and on the right are 12 dark blocks.  They still have 2 more rounds plus the corners.  I usually only make 4 blocks at a time instead of this many.

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Quilt finish #3 for February..............

The red and white star quilt is finished.  I pieced the top in January and used my very best red fabrics.  I knew I wanted to make a quilt with the white and black prints again and this was perfect for them.  It is a small quilt finishing at 43.5" x 67.5".

The backing fabric is mostly red and white with little tiny yellow and orange birds on it.

We got about 4" of snow all day Sunday and into the early hours yesterday.  My snow plow guy came around 10 a.m. and plowed the driveway and then the sun shone most of the day and melted off the residue.  It is clean for a couple days....more snow predicted early Wednesday morning and then freezing rain later in the day.  What a winter!

Monday, February 18, 2019

Red binding..................

I was planning to make more pineapple log cabin blocks yesterday but changed my mind and finished the quilting on this red star quilt.  I had a half yard of a red print that wasn't used in the quilt so I cut it for binding.  I have the hand stitching done on 3 sides and have started the fourth side.
We had snow most of the day yesterday.  I don't see crows in my backyard too often but the black against the white snow under the suet cages caught my eye and I snapped this photo before it flew away.  

Sunday, February 17, 2019

One more layout................

Here is one last layout before I start making more blocks, dark blocks in the center with light blocks as a border.
This layout is one I showed last week with the opposite layout, light center with dark blocks as a border.

In a comment yesterday someone said if I make 2 quilt tops, one dark and one light that they could be the front and back of the same quilt.  One problem with that is that these are batik fabrics, tightly woven and it is already hard to quilt through the layers of seams so it would be a real nightmare to have double the seams on top of each other with pieced both front and back of the quilt.  It would definitely be 2 separate quilts from the tops for me.

I spent a lot of time going through sewing related stuff in a 3 drawer cabinet.  I pitched some things, pulled out patterns that I will never make and found $40 in a bank envelope in the bottom of one drawer.

There is snow scheduled for today so I cancelled my art quilters gathering for tomorrow.  There must be a warmer dry day coming up soon.........

Saturday, February 16, 2019

My 2 Fridays project..................

This is the project I have been working on the last 2 Fridays.  I bought the pattern a few years ago and finally ordered the jute webbing it called for.  It was a LOT of work.  I will not go into the suitcase business!  The fabric is a heavier weight 56" wide fabric with trees and leaves in the print.

There is a zipper pocket on one end and a narrow side pocket between the straps on the side.  I added a pocket on the other end panel even though it wasn't on the pattern.  

I'm glad it is finished but I have another pattern for a little smaller bag that I am going to do next.  I have quite a few pieces of the heavier fabric to use so I think there are some tote bags in my future too.

Friday, February 15, 2019

Playing with layouts.............

I still haven't made any decision on the layout for my pineapple log cabin quilt.  I changed it back to every other one dark/light on point.  This would need half blocks to fill in on the edges or setting triangles of one fabric.

Then I changed it to a straight set with the same dark/light alternating blocks.  I will have to make a decision soon so I know how many of each kind of blocks I need to make.  Of course I could make 2 quilts, one with all dark, and one with all light blocks.

Meanwhile I started cutting pieces for another quilt.

My 2 friends are coming over to sew so I will work on the same project I worked on last week.  

Thursday, February 14, 2019

#2 finish for February 2019...........

I think it is only fitting to have a finished red quilt on Valentine's Day.

I have to admit that I wasn't feeling the love for this quilt in its unfinished state.  Crazy piecing is always so unfinished looking with all of the seams that come to the edges of the blocks and bias edges included.
Once the binding is on the quilt it is so nice and straight and elegant looking.  It really needed that nice dark binding to finish it off.  It ended up at 55" x 79".

This is my view as I'm approaching to do the photography for the blog.

The other red (and white) quilt is under the needle.  I'm going to take my time on the quilting so my shoulder doesn't complain so much.

We had beautiful blue skies and sunshine yesterday but it was cold.  The ice was shining like a million diamonds on the branches.  Today is supposed to be in the mid 40s so I hope the ice on my driveway disappears.