Tuesday, January 31, 2023


Success again, quilting done.

Again I did the organic straight lines, random spacing.

I used this variegated thread on this quilt.  I think maybe it will work for the next quilt I'm going to finish too.

Every wobble is a step I am taking as I walk sideways while I quilt, moving the machine from end to end and back again, row after row.  I think I have now figured out how to avoid that but this one is very organic.

I bought a batt of this variety to try it out and decided I liked it.  Then I bought a roll of it.  It worked fine in the batik quilt because it was so lightweight and this gave it some heft.  I still have a half roll left so I'm going to have to figure out which other quilts I want to be a little heavier weight.

I got it trimmed last night and then looked for binding.

This is what I ended up choosing.  I'll probably do this binding all by machine.

I think it looks pretty good.  I'll cut it this morning.


Monday, January 30, 2023

Busy day............

There wasn't much picture worthy done yesterday but I accomplished a lot.  I got this backing cut, sewn together, pressed and loaded on the longarm.  I also did the staystitching around 3 quilt tops, 2 from last year and one new one.  Enough space got cleared on my big table in the basement to cut the batting for 2 quilts today.  I sorted several piles of fabric and got some of it put away.

We got a crunchy layer of icy mix Saturday night so I was happy when my snow plow guy came early yesterday afternoon and cleaned off the driveway.  It was only 18 degrees and we had about 1 minute of sunshine over my house but the residue from the plowing mostly melted off by mid afternoon.  We got another light coating of snow overnight but it shouldn't be too slippery for the mailman.

Sunday, January 29, 2023

5th quilt top for January...........

I took out the darker block in the center in the photo yesterday and put in the lighter block.  I wanted to keep this mostly pastel.  It is 40.5" square and I'll choose a backing today.  I have a piece of batting that will work with just a little trimming.

I cut one more combination of pink for the heart quilt and made the 4 blocks.

Here are all of the blocks so far.  There are 4 blocks of each combination so it will look better when I get some more combinations sewn.  The blocks are 6" finished.

The snow storm stayed north of us so we only got flurries.  We have a few inches of snow on the ground because it has stayed below freezing.


Saturday, January 28, 2023

25 blocks...............

One little miscut and I only got 26 blocks from the stratas instead of 28.  I put 25 of them up on the design wall.  I'm not sure about the center block.  I have one more of the block that is directly above it that I could work into the mix instead.  Since this will be a baby quilt I think I can stop at 25 blocks because square quilts make good tummy time floor quilts.

I also got the backing pieced for the green/yellow quilt.  That is 2 new tops that I have made the backings for.  I hope this is the beginning of a good habit.  Of course there are the 30+ tops from previous years waiting for backings that I can work on too.


Friday, January 27, 2023

That box of 2.5" strips.............

This box has Kaffe Collective fabrics and a few Martha Negley strips.

At its fullest point the bottom layer was packed in tight and a top layer covered half of the strips below them.  Now I can push all of these strips over to one side and cover a little over half of the bottom of the box.  I'm making progress using them up.  They are great for mindless sewing with a "kind of" idea where I am headed.

I had housework that had to be done yesterday so I had nothing prepared to sew last night.  I searched though the box for light strips and made 14 sets for 16 patch blocks.  I should be able to get 2 blocks from each strip set.

I made this quilt a year and a half ago from light and medium strips from the same box plus a couple new strips cut near that time.  This one is about 40" x 48" and I'm considering it a baby quilt.  I would only have to sew one more strip set to make another quilt this same size.  

my Begonia has 2 complete flowers now.  The early blooms were just 2 petals each.  I have this on the windowsill by my kitchen sink so I can see it often.

We got a little more snow yesterday and more predicted today and tomorrow.  It's beginning to feel more like winter now.


Thursday, January 26, 2023

Backing chosen.............

I didn't find any fabric I liked for a border so this top won't have one.  I then searched for a backing.  This one is Martha Negley's Tree Rings.  There are 2 MN fabrics in the blocks so this one is perfect.

We got up yesterday morning to a beautiful white landscape.  This is dainty Coral Bell flower stalks with a coating of snow.

At the other end of the same flower bed are the Sedum flower heads with their snow caps.

The trees in the backyard were pretty in the morning and then it got up to 33 degrees and all of their snow covering fell or melted.

I like it when the snow piles up on the branches.  I'm not sure how much snow we got but I think it might have been 2-3".

Last night I sewed 2 more combinations of pink fabrics in the Wonky Heart pattern (Accuquilt GO die).  There are 2 of each so I have 12 blocks made so far.

Wednesday, January 25, 2023

Maybe a border?.................

I got the last 15 blocks cut and finished sewing the top together....so far...and maybe I'm considering a border.  It is 51" x 70" at this point.  The layout on this one was a little difficult because I repeated several yellow fabrics.  In fact the yellow with green dots is in 10 of the 35 blocks.

I have been getting pink fabrics ready to cut for a quilt so I sliced a bit off two of them and layered 4 pieces on my Wonky Heart die.  This will make 4 blocks.  They are only 6" blocks so I'll cut a few now and then and maybe have enough for a quilt some day.


Tuesday, January 24, 2023

A little more mindless sewing................

Grocery shopping and putting everything away took up the first hour and a half yesterday, before breakfast no less.  It took a while to get into the swing of what I needed to do and I tried to clean off a table while looking for more yellow fabrics for the quilt top in progress.  I ended up with 4 more yellow fabrics instead of 6 and cut 2 strips of each.  I repeated 2 of them in the stratas in the photo.  It got too late to press them and cut the blocks so I'll do that this morning.

The weather predictors are saying we will have some snow tomorrow.  The largest part of the storm will be south of us and it looks like IN and OH will get the deeper accumulation.  I haven't missed shoveling snow off the sidewalk and porch so far.  I need to fill the bird feeders and then I can hibernate inside. 

Monday, January 23, 2023

More mindless sewing..........

About 10 years ago I was doing an inventory of my Kaffe fabrics and cut 6.5" squares and 2" and 2.5" strips from all of them.  I have searched through the box of 2.5" strips with many projects and most of the strips left in there have raveled edges.  I'm trying to use them up before they shed more threads.  Last October I used a bunch of blue, turquoise, and a few greens.  Saturday I noticed a lot of yellow strips and I love yellow and green together so I pulled as many as I could find and started sewing these blocks which will finish at 10".  I need to cut 6 more yellow strips so I can use the rest of the greens and make this one row wider and longer.  This quilt will use 50 full width strips.

I made this quilt in 2020 and it used the same idea with the Onion Rings fabric as the center strip.  This one used 2" strips so the blocks were 7.5".  I ended up using most of the Kaffe 2" strips with this one.

One bud has opened and the other is still small on the orange cactus.  I saw one minute of sunshine yesterday before the clouds closed up again.  We got a light covering of snow very early morning yesterday and flurries for a few more hours and by afternoon most of it melted.

Sunday, January 22, 2023

#3 quilt top for January 2023

I was happy so many people agreed that the 16 patch blocks made a good addition to this quilt top.  I just had to add a single strip of squares to the bottom to make the column the right length.  This quilt top is 50" x 66".  I just need to add the staystitching all around the perimeter and it will go in the line up for quilting at a future date.

I brought my 4 pots of Begonias into the garage before the first freeze and they are in a dormant state.  I decided to bring one in and pull off the dead leaves and water it.  (It was half green and half dead leaves in the garage.)  It is sending up some very tiny blooms so I'm happy with the color during this overcast January.  I have buds on 2 Cacti but only a few.  I'm hoping there will be a good period of second blooming soon.  I have also brought in 2 Amaryllis bulbs from last year and am hoping for second year blooms.

Saturday, January 21, 2023

Neutral quilt top................

After pressing the neutral quilt top I put it up on the design wall for its photo.  It is amazing how many secondary designs there are when it is just 2 blocks alternated all through the top.  It is only 42" wide and 66" long.  If I were reclining in my chair it would be big enough to cover me while I nap.  Since I probably won't keep this one I think I need to make it wider somehow.

Just for kicks I opened the box with 182 sixteen patch blocks from the same assortment of fabric and placed a row of them down one side.  This would add 8" to it for 50" in width.  I'll play around with some brick shapes today.


Friday, January 20, 2023

Border added..............

I present a busy fantasy garden to get me through the winter.  This one is like my porch pots and flower gardens, packed edge to edge with color.  It is 54.5" x 65".  I have enough of the border fabric for the backing too.  I'm hoping I have enough of the stripe for the binding.

I finished making the neutral blocks and got the top sewn together by 10 last night.  I'll press it today for the full photo.  It is 42" x 66".  I have to decide if I am going to add any more width, maybe in brick shapes.

The best part of this one is the empty project box. There are 3 blocks leftover, some triangle squares and a few loose triangles.  


Thursday, January 19, 2023

A little neutral progress............

All of the blocks I had sewn previously were pressed yesterday and I started playing at the design wall.  I don't want to go any farther until I get the rest of the blocks assembled so I get the variety spread out.  This will be a small quilt.  That means I'm not cutting any more triangles unless I need a couple to finish this.  Right now it is 42" wide and I think there are enough triangles to make it 66" long.

Rain last night and some predicted for today.  We are short of moisture this winter so this is a good thing.  January has been warmer than normal and that means snowfall is way below normal.  

Wednesday, January 18, 2023

How did I make my decision...........

I knew I wanted the Kaffe #150 Strata as the sashing on my Ohio Star quilt so I tried all of the colors that I had.

I had a strip of the blue stripe in my studio because it was left over from a binding a while back.  I thought it was going to work but it was too dark.

Next I tried the red thinking it would look good but too many of the blocks had red corner squares so the red stripe blended in to them too much.

I have used the light stripe as a border on another quilt and I thought it might keep the quilt neutral but I thought it looked a little anemic and also blended into the light backgrounds.

The gold one might have worked but there are a lot of blocks that had yellow or gold corner squares.

That left the green stripe which contrasts nicely with all of the blocks.  

Also in this photo on the left is a candidate for a border on this quilt.  The blocks aren't the star of this quilt, the whole composition is more important.

Tuesday, January 17, 2023

Tops sewn, maybe needs a border...............

The main part of this quilt top is sewn but not pressed so it is a little wonky on the design wall.  I got this far at 10:30 last night.  It is about 43.5" x 54" now.  I think it might be nice with a border added so I'm not saying it is finished at this point.

I went over my lists of quilt tops and wrote down backing sizes next to some of them.  Maybe that will encourage me to get some backings pieced.  I have a few pieces of 60" wide fabric too that I can use on some of the smaller ones.


Monday, January 16, 2023

First finish of 2023............

The Friendship Star quilt top was made in April 2021 and the backing was chosen early last year.  I used all of the 4" triangles that were cut from scraps in 2019 and only cut the center squares specifically for this project.  It is small, about 47" x 59".

I used flannel on the back, a very small plaid.  I thought the green went well with the front of the quilt.  

I found a green print that looked good with it for the binding.  I had just a half yard of it and now there is just a small amount left.  I did the binding all by machine.

 I looked at all of the Kaffe Strata colors for sashing and decided on the green one for it.  The strips will be 1/2" narrower than they look here after they are sewn.  I tucked the top left corner strips under the block to simulate the finished width.  Today I will look for a fabric for cornerstones.

Last night I sewed some of the blocks for the neutral quilt.  They are 6" blocks and there are 33 of them done so far.  I made 4 alike of each combination except one that has 5 blocks.


Sunday, January 15, 2023

No thread breaks..............

I changed the needle but left the same neutral thread on the longarm and quilted this scrappy Friendship Star.  No thread breaks, none.  I have flannel on the back of this one and it will be a comfort quilt for someone.

Loops, big ones, small ones going both left and right, perfect for a soft quilt.  Top thread is So Fine in a light beige.

Then I made the 15th block and this will become a small quilt soon.  I'm thing about a stripe for sashing. I just need to decide which color.

Three more light neutrals were cut into triangles to match up with the remaining dark ones.  I got them all sewn last night.

I did 2 layouts to see which I would like the best.  The top one has 2 + 2 matching squares making each of the 4 blocks

The bottom one is all random squares in 2 blocks.  I have to make a decision soon so I can get the blocks made and then back to the design wall for a final layout.