Thursday, November 30, 2023

Starting something new...............

I need a few baby quilts and I want them made of flannel.  I had this box of strips in the basement.  I figured it was all 2" strips but after piecing a few blocks I realized there were 2 widths of strips in there.

Since the blocks weren't all the same size I had to trim all of them to the size of the smallest block.  Now there are 3 widths of strips since some edge strips are now narrower.  When sewn this should be about 34" square.  I think a 3" border will work and I could trim it down a little before binding if I decide it is too wide.

Most of the champagne color cactus blooms are fading but I found one good one.

The pale pink plant by the west window has started blooming.  The piece from this plant in the east window is just about done.

The second piece I saved off a dying white plant is blooming now.  It has a little pink tint near the base.  There is a third piece that hasn't bloomed yet.

I took another photo of the Trip Around the World quilt on the bed and removed the old photo and inserted the new one in yesterday's post.

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Photo session.............

I started the morning yesterday by moving the couch and spreading the quilts one at a time on the carpeting.  This one is a Blooming 9 Patch (Blanche Young, Tradition With a Twist) that I reconfigured by adding one more square down the middle and cutting the strips 2" instead of 1.75" so that it would fit a queen bed.

Speaking of on a queen size bed, I moved 38 wallhangings off the guest bed so I could take these photos.  30 of them are hanging over the back of a bench in my living room and 8 of them are rolled on 2 pool noodles and tied. This quilt measures 88" x 105.5" now.

It was sunny outside but I had to close the curtains on the south side because the light was washing out all of the color on the right side.

Then it was the Trip Around the World's turn for the carpeting shot.  It measures 85" x 104" finished.

And then on the bed.  

And one more closer shot of the center of the quilt.  It was quite a workout but I'm glad I have the wallhangings moved.  I will roll a bunch of the smaller ones on cardboard tubes that a batting roll was wrapped on.

Tuesday, November 28, 2023

Second finish for November..........

The binding is done and I'll measure it later.  This one was 88.5" x 107" before quilting.  I'm 61.5" tall so it is going to be a stretch to get it up on the double design wall.

This shows a few more of the fabrics.  I really like a lot of them.

This photo of the quilt top was taken in 2020 when I finished sewing it.  The colors are truer in the photos above. It was 9" wider than my double design wall so the top corners are turning back.  Most of the fabrics are from the late 1990s.  The backing was purchased at a deep discount because it wasn't selling but I always liked that combination of flower colors on a gold background color.

I may have to just take photos of these last 2 finished quilts on my carpeting.  I can move the couch to make a space large enough.  My guest bed is piled with wallhangings so it would take a day of moving things to take photos of each of them on the queen size bed and then you would only see a portion of the quilt.

Monday, November 27, 2023

Working on the second quilt..........

I got the binding cut and sewn on this second huge quilt, Blooming 9 Patch.  I have the first side finished by machine, stitching in the ditch next to the binding on the front to catch the flap of binding on the back.  It isn't perfect and I'm only showing you a good spot.  The binding and backing are the same so I don't think it is a major problem
Here are some of the prettier fabrics in the quilt.  I will work on the binding today and hopefully finish it.

We got about 2" of snow yesterday and the street melted off by late afternoon.  It's only going to be 27 today and tomorrow so the snow will stay on the grass.  This photo shows all of the Brown Eyed Susans and Black Eyed Susans left standing for the winter.  According the nature experts this leaves a wintering over place for a lot of insects in the stems.

Sunday, November 26, 2023

First finish for November................

I haven't tried to measure this Trip Around the World quilt or to pin it to my design wall yet.  I finished the hand stitching before noon yesterday.

I took some daylight close up shots of the fabrics.  They are all from the mid to late 1990s.

I was the buyer for the quilt shop I worked at.  When the salesmen came with the samples I would take them up to the front of the store and see where we needed fill in prints.

My Trip Around the World class was popular there and I taught it between 4 and 6 times a year for about 6 years. Therefore we sold a lot of fabric for that pattern, 16, 20 or 22 fabrics depending on the size quilt they were making.

I was always looking for prints that had movement in them, ones that wouldn't look flat and stop the flow of the values.

This one is somewhere around 86" x 106" which might have enough drop on the sides of the thick queen size mattresses that are popular right now.  It would definitely need a dust ruffle with it on a standard bed.  I don't like dust ruffles so I usually made the queen bed quilts oversized (96" x 106") so the drop covered the box spring and mattress.

I got the other huge quilt trimmed and started cutting the binding strips.  As I mentioned a few posts back, that binding will be done all by machine.

Saturday, November 25, 2023

18 inches to go............

I wish I had more to report.  I hand stitched in 3 sessions, the last one being about 4 hours.  My eyes were giving out at 11 p.m. so I will finish it today.

The binding is the same fabric as the border, an old Hoffman batik.  The back is a Free Spirit wide sateen backing fabric.  Both have been easy to stitch through.

It was only in the low 30s yesterday and snow predicted starting in the wee hours of Sunday morning and continuing for several hours.  They are talking about 1 1/2" and above freezing temperatures by mid afternoon so melting will start.  It's just enough to let us know winter is coming.

Friday, November 24, 2023

Still hand stitching..............

I really didn't spend a lot of time hand stitching the binding yesterday.  I'm half done now so I hope today I will get it finished. Then I can trim the other quilt.

While taking a break from stitching I played on my smaller design wall with some of the 6.5" squares of Kaffe collective fabrics.  This is from the multicolor pile and I was just playing with what is available to come up with an idea.  I will NOT sew this.  I need to go to my larger double design wall in the basement and take all of the squares down there.  Now I have an idea of how many really light squares are in the group.

Thursday, November 23, 2023

Binding started..............

I got one of the huge quilts trimmed, binding cut and sewn on and hand stitching started.  I have one long side done.  This quilt was started way back around 2000 (or earlier) and was used as a sample in progress for many Trip Around the World classes that I taught.  I finished sewing it together at some point after I started this blog (July 4, 2007).

At the end of 2014 I sewed on the border and took this photo.  Now 9 years later it is quilted and close to being finished.  I'm not sure if I can get it up on the double design wall for a photo because it is longer than the 96" wall and is a lot heavier with batting in it.  It might take me a couple more days to finish the hand stitching but it hopefully will be finished this month.

Happy Thanksgiving to my USA friends.  We had an early dinner when my out of state family was here at the beginning of the month so today will be a low key day.

Wednesday, November 22, 2023

2nd quilt top for November.............

I Spy 2 top is sewn together now.  All I need to do now is get both of the I Spy quilts finished for Christmas.  There are 120 unique novelty prints in this quilt top, each square finishing at 6".  The top is 68.5" x 80.5".  I'm planning on putting flannel on the back of both of the I Spy Quilts.

When I went out to check the rain gauge I noticed the pansy is still hanging in there.  It has been there even on the nights it was down to the mid-20s.  I knew they liked cooler weather but now I know they like cold weather too.  We got a half inch of rain overnight Monday night.  That is the only measurable rain this month so far.

Today I will be trimming the 2 quilts I got back yesterday and cutting and sewing on binding.

Tuesday, November 21, 2023

Borders on.................

I did everything I could think of to delay sewing the border on this I Spy quilt.  Borders are always a time for procrastination for me.  They aren't that hard, just not the most fun part of assembly.  Eventually I pressed the top and border fabric and got busy on it.  I decided on a 4.5" cut border. I'll press it and photograph it today.  I think it should be about 68" x 80".

I'm going to get the 2 quilts I sent out for quilting back today.  There will some binding time in my future.  One will be all by machine, the other might get hand finished.

Monday, November 20, 2023

Border chosen..................

I went through 3 shelves of fabric and finally decided on this stripe for the border of I Spy 2.  I bought it way back in the late 1990s with a kid's quilt in mind for it.  I might use it for a border on I Spy 3 also.

I was looking through the rest of the 6.5" Kaffe collective squares that I pulled all of the red/pink/orange from for the red quilt top I just finished.  I don't know if I want another all squares quilt with so much high contrast.

I ended up with quite a few of the red group too because I only used a maximum of 2 of each fabric and there were as many as 6 of some them.  With all of these reds mixed back in it would make a nice multicolor quilt top.

While trying to make a decision on that I worked on 3 dishcloths.  2 pairs of needles, 3 projects.  This way I can pick up whichever one interests me and they will all get finished about the same time. 

Sunday, November 19, 2023

Center panel sewn............

Nothing else was on my schedule so I had 3 sewing sessions yesterday and got the center panel of I Spy 2 sewn.  Today I'll look for border fabrics.  I have several pieces with letters and numbers but also have some bright stripe fabrics.    

I'm enjoying this display so much.  The 2 cacti that aren't in the photo still just have buds but should bloom soon.

In the morning light these blooms look like lavender but they are really pink.  The ones on the left are pale pink and the ones on the right deeper rose.


Saturday, November 18, 2023

First quilt top finish for November.................

I'm so glad my idea of an inserted border 2 rows in worked as well as it did.  By making it from segments the same length as the squares, there were no long strips to sew in.  The quilt top is 68.5" x 86.5", larger than I had originally intended to make it.  The more reds I found in the Kaffe collective, the more I wanted to add.

This is the final layout of the I Spy 2 quilt.  I decided on 12 rows long instead of 13 because I plan to put a border on it.  I got the first 3 webbing seams sewn last night while I watched TV.


Friday, November 17, 2023

One new, continuing on red............

I started laying out the second I Spy quilt on the double design wall in the basement.  This one is 6.5" squares with a dark/light alternating with mediums thrown in wherever I like them.  I need to still add 3 rows to the length but 10 squares is the width (60").

Now back to the red Kaffe squares quilt top.  This is the worst instersection, done when I was in a hurry to finish the second half.

Now that is better.  I can live with this.  There were 5 places altogether that I picked out and re-sewed.  I'm much happier with the top now.

Now the top is all sewn together and waiting to be pressed today.

More blooms yesterday.  The top left is white, the top right is pale pink.  Bottom left is champagne and middle row right, medium rose.  The other two in the lower right still just have buds.  I know one is champagne color, not sure what the other one is.

As much as I love all of the colors, the white ones are so elegant and I always look forward to them. 

Thursday, November 16, 2023

How about a no guilt free day?.................

I really needed a day (or more) away from the red quilt so I pulled these 2 project boxes off the shelves so I could see what was actually in them.

I knew there were lots of straight strips leftover from previous quilts but was surprised how wide some of them were.  The widest are 4.5" and there is a good size stack of them.  The plastic bag at the top right is full of fairly small pieces of Marcia Derse fabrics collected over several years after making eight quilt tops with those fabrics. 

I pulled a few scraps out and played with them but didn't get excited enough to sew anything out of them.  I had fun looking through the boxes though, and then the day was gone......

Wednesday, November 15, 2023

Birthday bouquet............

I can't remember if I have ever had a bouquet of all yellow roses before.  These are beauties.  Well, I made it to 83, my goal when I turned 80 and now the next goal is 85.

The bottom section is all sewn but I decided not to sew it to the top section yet.  Some of intersectons of the pieced narrow inserted border aren't very good and I want to inspect every one of them.  I decided that would be easier working with each half instead of the whole top.  That will hold this one up for a few days but it should still be done by the end of the month.