Saturday, September 30, 2023

Just a little more..........

Just 75" more to hand stitch on the binding.  I stitched for 3 1/2 hours last night with TV on to keep me company.  I'll probably stitch a little in the morning today and then finish in the evening.  My 65th class reunion is this afternoon at a classmate's house a little over 2 miles from where I lived as a child.  There might only be 15 of us out of a class of 48.  Some live too far away to come.  Many have passed and will be there in spirit as we talk about the good times of the class of 1958.

Friday, September 29, 2023

Binding time................

I got the binding cut and sewn onto this quilt after lunch yesterday.  I had a hard talking myself into starting the hand sewing.

I'm running out of time for a September finish on this one.  I like the dotty print next to this block.

I knew it would look good next to the purple block.  I have about half of one long side hand stitched so I see I will have a lot of sitting for a couple days.

I was hoping to have the African/batik quilt top layout done and the top sewn together too but I doubt I would have time to do both of these projects by midnight tomorrow night.


Thursday, September 28, 2023

Binding chosen...........

Decision made, the purple won.  Even though there aren't any prints in the quilt top, this dotty print picks up the colors in almost all of the blocks.  I didn't get it cut but it feels good to have the decision made.

While in the basement doing laundry, I put away some stacks of fabric.  I kept looking a this stack and thinking what a nice low volume quilt it would make.  Even just a simple quilt made with squares would be pretty.  I'm sure I have a lot more that could be added to them.

October is going to start with close to a week of 80 degree days.  That's quite a change from the cool rainy weather we have been having.  Yesterday we got almost 3/4 of an inch of rain with heavy rain just after midnight and then several showers throughout the day.  The tomatoes are mostly green so I hope they ripen with the warm week ahead.  They have been watered well with the nice rain.

Wednesday, September 27, 2023

3 binding options...............

The search was on.  I knew there some fairly solid looking dotty fabrics from the very early designs by Kaffe, you know, the ones selling for $60 or more a yard to people who didn't know who Kaffe was until a few years ago and are beefing up their collection.  

This purple background dotty has colors that are in the stripes and shot cottons.

This blue one is even more solid looking with dots that don't have a high contrast.  It is called Freckles.

This red one is also called Freckles and I have the least amount of it but I do have enough to cut for binding.

All three look great with the backing fabric so it is just a decision which one.  I have the most of the purple so it would make sense to use it and still have some of the other 2 for other projects.  I thought in the beginning that I wanted red; I'm not sure now.  I'll give it a day of thinking and then decide.

Last night I sewed the last 6 duplicate blocks of the African and mottled batik 16 patch blocks.  That gives me 67 pieced blocks and 20 of the lime batik, 87 total.  I originally planned and 8 x 10 quilt, 80 blocks, 64" x 80".  If I go 9 x 11 I would have to make 12 more blocks and would end up with another quite large quilt at 72" x 99".  More decisions, more contemplating time.

I went to the grocery store early last evening and this was my odometer reading when I pulled into my parking place, 73,000.

It turned 72,000 on 2/6/22, almost 20 months ago. 1000 divided by 20 is 50 miles a month.  The grocery store and post office are 7 blocks from my house and the pharmacy 1 mile away.  W-mart is 3 miles and the gas station 4 miles.  The garden center I go to is probably at least 5 miles away. There isn't much else I need to go to and with all of the distracted drivers crossing the center line, I'm happy to have my van in the garage.  Less driving, more time playing with fabric and gardening.

Tuesday, September 26, 2023

I did it................

After mentioning in Monday's post that I wanted to quilt this yesterday, I did it.  It has a lot of lines of quilting and I walked back and forth for 2 1/2 hours.

I used the channel locks for this one for straight lines.

I would call this thread color soft red.  It is redder than dark rose but much softer color than true red. 

This color blended in nicely with the soft colors in Kaffe's yarn dyed woven stripes and shot cottons.

I think there is enough backing fabric to use for binding but I'm not sure I want that Philip Jacobs print at the edge when there aren't any other prints in the quilt top.  One of the shot cottons would probably be best but they are so lightweight that I worry about them wearing well on the edge.  I'll be searching my stash today.

Monday, September 25, 2023

15 more blocks...............

There is nothing too exciting to look at from yesterday.  I sewed 15 more of the duplicate blocks for the African and mottled batik 16 patch quilt.

Outside: I mowed the grass.  We had rain on 4 different days last week so the grass was wet most of the week and the grass was getting tall.  It took 58 minutes total, in 2 sessions so I didn't overheat.  The neighbor north mowed too and also the lady across the street.  Now the south neighbor better catch up with all of us.

Today I hope I can quilt the top that is loaded on the longarm.


Sunday, September 24, 2023

Marcia arrived early..............


I love it when fabric is delivered earlier than tracking predicted.  Here are several photos of all 14 of Marcia Derse's new line called Marble Run.  I would say this is my favorite but then I would say that over and over as I show the rest.  I love all of it.  The name of this print is Marble Run.

This one is called Stick Stacks.  They are both vivid colors.

This is one group called Splash.

These are the final two colors of Splash.

Then I grouped some I might use together.

This is a more subdued group that could be used together.  All of the colors in this line go well with one of her other recent lines.  So now I have the fabric; next I need to come up with an idea for a quilt.  

I finished this quilt in 2016 and gifted it to a great niece last year.  I might make something similar with the new fabrics mixed into the stash of Marcia fabrics that I have.  That is unless a better idea takes center stage.

Saturday, September 23, 2023

Cleaning the basement and 5 years ago..............

Yesterday I had some help with cleaning up the basement.  My helper vacuumed the cobwebs and the dust on the pipes along the ceiling joists and I vacuumed the floor.  I also unburied a few chairs that had piles on them.

5 years ago I was just starting the blocks for a Marcia Derse star quilt.

At this point I had all of the blocks sewn together into a quilt top but I knew I wanted a border.

I found some perfect Marcia Derse fabrics in my stash for the borders and got it all sewn together early in November 2018.  It is waiting its turn to be quilted.

A new Marcia Derse line is available now.  I saw it for $14-17 a yard most places and didn't know if I would buy any right away.  Then I found it for $10.99 at Hancock's of Paducah.  Yes, I ordered some and it should be here Monday.


Friday, September 22, 2023

A fun day................

My daughter stopped by yesterday and brought me a gift.  The top fabric is a Philip Jacobs fabric in his Snow Leopard brand.  The other 2 are Brandon Mably prints.  I haven't had a chance to open the magazine yet but I know it will be good reading.

It has been awhile since she was here so I was showing her some of the quilt tops she had only seen photos of.  In the foreground is the next quilt in line on the longarm and we decided it made an interesting photo with both together.

We got to the point of pinning quilt tops on top of quilt tops on the design wall and piling more quilts on the longarm.  By the end of the day everything was down and hung neatly on hangers again to await its turn to be finished.  She helped me choose backings for several quilts and even binding for a couple.  I usually don't choose bindings until one is quilted but we found some great choices.  Now I need to cut about 5 batting pieces and then I can get the roll of batting off my worktable.


Thursday, September 21, 2023

More blocks.............

More blocks, and even more blocks, for the African 16 patch quilt.  I had several other things to take care of yesterday so this is the only action that happened in the studio.

We had sunshine part of the day yesterday, more light rain for today.  I'm not complaining about the rain though, we still need more.  Maybe I can get some vacuuming done in the basement while it rains.


Wednesday, September 20, 2023

Auditioning the lime batik.............

I decided to cut one strip of the lime batik into squares to see if I was going to like it.  This is the first 34 of the 16 patch blocks.  The quilt will have 8 across and 10 down so this is just a sampling.  I like it so I will be cutting more of the squares and sewing the 34 duplicate 16 patch blocks.  Then I'll decide how many more blocks I need to piece.

We had several hours of light rain yesterday and got .35".  We're still at a deficit but I was happy we got this much.


Tuesday, September 19, 2023

Looking at seeds.....................

I'm going to have some out of town company later this week so my time is kind of scattered between chores and fun.  I vacuumed the main floor carpeting yesterday, baked some beer bread, mixed up some dough that needs to be chilled, and went through stacks of magazines.  I never made it to the ironing table.  Last night I just wanted to look at fun stuff so I pulled out these "seeds" for another project.

This photo is from April 2016 when I trimmed them all to whaterver maximum width I could.  This is all of the sizes, not just what I showed above.  I think I need to play with these and make something with them before the end of the year.  They may make more than one art piece.  It won't be a bed size quilt.  These are all batiks and I have 2 medium size boxes full of 2" wide batik strips so they may co-mingle.


Monday, September 18, 2023

A day of rest.............

We had rain off and on the last 2 days, only .8" of rain here, but 5+" just 60 miles east of us in an area that has been hit with heavy rain more than once this past summer.  It was overcast so this photo is a little off in color.  I love both of these quilts so I have them both on the bench by the fireplace.  Fall starts at 2 a.m. Saturday so I guess I should look through my favorites for one with fall vibes.

I did spend some time going through things on the dining room table. I have been trying to clean it off for several weeks but keep getting sidetracked.  Today I need to press my 16 patch blocks so I can put them all up on the design wall.  I have a quilt loaded on the longarm too so there isn't a lack of things that need to be done.  I'm looking forward to some sunshine today.

Sunday, September 17, 2023

Flying Geese are sewn on............

I finally took the pieces off the design wall and got it all sewn together.  The geese border fit perfectly with the half goose beginning the border both top and bottom.  I like it just as it is and could just quilt and bind it but it is only 40" x 56" so I need to keep adding to it.  It would only work as a wallhanging right now.

While the iron was hot I pressed the newest batch of strip piecing for the other African fabric quilt.  I got them all cut and sewed one of each combination.  Now I have 34 duplicate blocks to sew.

I intended to look through my African fabrics for a large print for possible alternate blocks to add to the 16 patch quilt.  Instead I looked through some batiks.  I have had this one for a long time and I love it.

I decided to lay some of the 16 patch blocks on it to see if it would work.  I have a yard so I would have enough to cut 20 blocks.

I have had this batik hanging over the back of my sewing chair for a few months.  It looks too dark with the assortment of blocks I auditioned with it but might look okay with the whole assortment.  Today I will look through the African fabrics.  Here is the last African 16 patch top that I made with alternate blocks inserted.

The Zinfin Doll hydrangea has turned a dark raspberry color now.  I looked back in my photos to see how it looked last year.  There were about half of the flowers this color and half that were still medium pink and raspberry mix.  There are a lot more blooms this year.

Saturday, September 16, 2023

More parts................

I worked on more parts for the 16 patch quilt.  These 5 strip sets will produce 10 blocks.  Now I have 16 strip sets to press and slice into block segments.  With all of the others I have already sewn this would give me a total of 68 blocks, enough for a 7 x 9 layout = 63 blocks or I can continue to add to it.  I will check to see if I have a large print that would look good cut into some alternate blocks.

I went through the 2" strips left from a previous quilt and found 5 more that would make a nice group.

This is all of the leftover sewn stratas from that previous quilt.  I'm considering using these for a border on the African elephant quilt top.  I need to turn on the iron today and press the Flying Geese borders and the 16 patch stratas.

The weather has been absolutely gorgeous here, mid 70s for a high, 50 degrees at night, and very low humidity.  I cut down a few more peonies, filled the birdfeeders and picked the Sun Gold cherry tomatoes.

Friday, September 15, 2023

Lots of strip piecing.......

Lots of African fabric strips were cut yesterday and all but 4 were paired with mottled batiks.  I got 11 sets sewn last night.  That will make 22 blocks.

It's nice to be working on two quilts at the same time.  I can gaze up at the one on the design wall while sewing for the other quilt.

I decided to cut a Flying Geese block in half and put half onto one end of each of the borders.  I sewed them on and now need to sew on the 2 burgundy strips first, then the Flying Geese borders.  I'll adjust any length problems at the half goose end.

The Hairy Alumroot Coral Bell is in full bloom now.  This one is in the front flower bed and has sun from around 9 a.m to 2:30 p.m.  I have another in my back garden that is in the shade more than sun and it doesn't have as many blooms.  These blooms stand up through snow storms so there is winter interest, not just bare ground like a lot of other perennials have.  In fact the Coral Bell leaves are there all winter too, all of the varieties. This Coral Bell is the largest variety that I have.

Thursday, September 14, 2023

Flying Geese borders............

Last night I sewed the Flying Geese borders.  The pieced top is 40" and the Flying Geese borders are 39".  I have 3 solutions so far, a narrow spacer at each end, a spacer at just one end, or a partial Flying Geese block since I have a few of them left over and I could cut one in half and use half on each border.

I also made the 4 new 16 patch blocks with the African fabric and mottled batiks.  I have the 18 duplicates ready to sew if I don't make any progress on anything else.

I checked on my teeny tiny yellow Coneflower plant and the other bud is blooming.  This plant is only 4-5" tall.  I sure hope it has some height next year.

The volunteer Moss Roses are still blooming.  I hope they toss some seeds around for more plants next year.

The 8 Nasturtium plants have the most blooms at one time right now.  It has been just 2 or 3 blooms at a time up until now.