Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Sweet Dreams

Today I continued to work on my granddaughter's big girl quilt. Her birthday is January 22. I have to get as much done as possible before we leave for NYC on Friday. When we get back, Son, DIL, and granddaughter will be here for a few days. I will have to get it put away while they are here. Here is my progress so far.
I have the center section pieced and have put on one border. The design is Hexagon Park which is posted on Moda Bake Shop site. I chose fabrics that feature candy, cupcakes, ice cream, dollies, stripes, dots, etc. Here is a closer shot.
I am calling this one Sweet Dreams.

Tomorrow I have to get my act together and get ready to travel. I have my fingers crossed that this storm that is working its way across the midwest won't interfere with our flights.

Thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Today's Progress

I have now completed all 13 blocks in the Blogger's BOM project in my original colorway. I wish I would have known how this was going to look at the beginning of the project. I think I have way too much black, but I started using that as my background color because I didn't have enough gray in my stash. I have played around with the layout on my design wall and I think this arrangement distributes the gold pretty evenly.
I don't have anything in my stash that is appropriate for the sashing and cornerstones. I think I am going to have to buy some fabric to finish the project that I had hoped to complete entirely from my stash. Darn.

I also completed block #7 in the Designer Mystery BOM from Fat Quarter shop. This one was designed by Sandy Gervais. I really like this one. I have liked every one as I have gone along, but I especially like this one.
I have also started working on my granddaughter's big girl quilt for her third birthday in January. I don't have any pictures yet. Sorry.

Every sewing day is so precious to me. When I get back into a new semester I know that my sewing time will really be limited so I am trying to take advantage while I can. We will be traveling to NYC on Friday to spend Christmas with my daughter and her family (I will be meeting my newest grandson for the first time), so my machine time is limited.

Thanks for stopping by.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Another finished top

I have finished the Blogger's BOM with my Christmas fabric colorway.
I made the piano key border 4.25 wide, not the 6.5 of Jackie's plan. It turned out better than I imagined. I am so glad that I stayed with this project. I have backing material so I will get this one quilted soon.

Today I worked on my other colorway for the Blogger's BOM project. I have to finish up block #13. I will have to refigure the finishing details because I do not have enough fabric to finish it up with sashing and cornerstones, etc. Sigh. More math.

Thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

What I've Been Up To

I told you I spent Wednesday and Thursday 'sewing my brains out.' This is what I've been up to. I have been working on Bonnie Hunter's Blue Ridge Beauty as a leader/ender project. On Wednesday, I just sat down and finished sewing the pairs together and then turned them into four patches. It was pedal to the metal time. Yeah, baby! It felt so good!
The pattern calls for 448 four patches. I have completed 460. If I don't like the way some of these look together, I will have some others to switch out.

Also, I have been revisiting the Blogger's BOM project. I got really behind this fall with all of my work responsibilities, so I cut back on my sewing time. I am now catching up with some of the things I had put aside. One of them is the Blogger's BOM project. I have been working on two color ways for this project. I pulled out the Christmas colorway (big surprise) and finished the last two blocks. I also added the sashing strips and cornerstones.
The problem is that I am working from my stash. I have run out of some of the fabrics I would like to use to complete the project. I had wanted to use my background fabric as the sashings, but I didn't have enough so I substituted another stash fabric. Now, the piano keys outer border. I don't have nearly enough fabric that I used in the block construction to use in the outer border. When I tried to use my  background fabric for the sashings, I actually cut 27 2.25x8.5 inch rectangles (I needed 36). Since I already had the fabric cut into strange shapes, I decided to subcut them into 2.25x4.25 rectangles for the piano key border. That is the dimension I used to cut other leftover fabrics. I won't end up with the same size quilt as everyone else, but it will be a finished project.

I spent a lot of time doing the math on this. Math is not my forte, so this consumed a lot of time today. I now have it all planned out, and this is what I have completed so far.

I have sewn one side of the piano keys. I will also cut 4.25 inch cornerstones in red solid. I am already pondering the backing even though I haven't completed sewing the top.

Thanks for stopping by.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Finished House Quilt

It has taken a while for me to chill out after finishing another busy semester. I posted grades on Wednesday morning and spent the rest of Wednesday and all day Thursday just sewing my brains out. Boy, did that feel good. I'll share my progress later.

Today's post is sharing my completely finished House Quilt.
Here it is, laid out on my king-size bed. I am very happy with the result. None of my fears about sending it out to be quilted came to fruition. Whew. I think it looks great.
I sent it to Missouri Star Quilt Company. It took about six weeks to get it back. I knew it would take a while because they were very clear about that when I sent it in.
I asked for gray/charcoal/slate quilting thread. I am really happy with the way it looks going across the houses and in the black border. You can see that I chose to use the same gray polka dot for the binding that I used in the sashing around the houses. I had originally thought I would bind it in red, but truthfully, I just didn't want to buy fabric when I had plenty of the dot left over.
OK, I have no idea how to turn this picture. Sorry. I made the label in the shape of a house. You will see that I included a couple "I Spy" questions just for fun. Those of you who have been following this long saga might remember that when I first started sewing these houses, I unintentionally made three with the door in the opposite position. It really doesn't matter at all, but from that point on, I purposely put the door on the left wall.
Here is a house with a bunny in the window. This one now goes onto my list of finishes for 2012.

Thanks for stopping by.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Rabbit, Rabbit!

It's the first of December; it's time to say, "Rabbit, Rabbit!"

My house quilt was returned from the quilter yesterday. I am very happy with the result. Today, I have to decide on the binding and get that put on so I will have another 2012 finish. I'll post pictures later.

Thanks for stopping by.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

The Snowman Top is Finished

Wahoo! I have the Merry, Merry Snowmen top put together.
I love how the borders set off the blocks. I thought I had miscounted when I made my little snowman heads that are set into scattered blocks. I had one left when I finished block #9. I forgot that it went in the upper right hand cornerstone. You can barely make it out up there.

Now, I have to decide who I will send it to for quilting. I do not want to have edge to edge quilting on this one. It really deserves to be set off with special quilting. Do any of you have recommendations for a good long armer I can send it to? I follow the blogs of a couple long armers who are EXCELLENT! That makes me afraid that I won't be able to afford their work. Let me know what you think.

Thanks for stopping by.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Catching Up

I wonder how many times I have used that title. Work just gets in the way of my quilting and blogging. In my last post, I mentioned that I was going to a conference.
Do you know what this is? It is the view of the ferris wheel from the end of Union Street in Seattle. I actually had time to walk down to Pike Market while I was at my conference. Usually, I go to a city and never see anything but the hotel and the conference center. Pike Market is great fun. See what I found!
I found Undercover Quilts. What a cute little quilt shop. The owners are so sweet. (I have their business card, but it is in my office and I can't remember their names.) The owner helped me find some fabrics to add to those that I am putting aside to make granddaughter's big-girl quilt for her third birthday (January). If you are in the area, you need to check them out.
They had some of the most wonderful machine quilted examples on display. I was especially taken with the nautical maps.

The echo quilting was something to see. I wonder if there are any Great Lakes fabrics that are similar...not that I have the skills to make something like this.

Now that I am home, I have found some sewing time. Son, DIL and granddaughter were not able to come for Thanksgiving as planned. DIL had to have gall bladder surgery. I am happy to report that she is doing well, but we missed seeing them. Sigh. We won't get to see our granddaughter until March.

I have spent a little time at my machine and was able to get Merry, Merry Snowmen block #9 completed.
Notice the sign. I haven't been happy with my back stitching, so I sewed these letters using outline stitch. It isn't as clear, but I am not redoing it. I have to say, it is not as readable as the back stitch, even though I am not very good at it.

I have also gotten the blocks put together.
Tomorrow, I will start the borders. Feels good to be getting a project done.

Thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Catching up

I am still getting caught up on some of my projects that were ignored while I worked on a big project for work. It feels pretty good to see some progress on these projects. I have missed them.
First, I completed Merry, Merry Snowmen blocks 7 & 8.

These little guys are so cute. I have missed them. I already have the materials for block #9, but I need a break from applique. It is not my best skill.

I also finished the Designer Mystery BOM blocks 4 & 5. I just love the Vintage Modern fabric. The cuts of fabric are very generous for this BOM program. I am collecting some great scraps and bonus triangles while making the blocks.

Sorry about the terrible photography. I only have my old iPhone for a camera. I guess I should put a good camera on my Christmas list.

I am off to a conference on Tuesday morning, so I won't be having much sewing time for the next week. Thanks for stopping by.

Friday, November 9, 2012

2012 Finish #5

I finished the On The Go baby quilt for my newest grandson.

I am pretty happy with the outcome.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012


My family fared very well when hurricane Sandy hit NYC. They never lost power. One tree came down in front of their building. DH sent the picture.
I can't imagine that all of those parking spaces were unoccupied (I've never seen open spaces in front of their building), but DH didn't mention that any cars had sustained damage. They are definitely among the most blessed of any who were in the path of the hurricane. They kept power, had no damage and no flooding. DH is not scheduled to fly out of NYC until Sunday, Nov. 4, a full week after he was originally scheduled to leave. LaGuardia is still flooded.

Thanks for stopping by.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Anticipating Sandy

If you know that I live in KY, why am I anticipating Sandy? DH has been in NYC for a week visiting our new grandson. I can't go until Christmas because I am working. Anyway, he was supposed to return on Sunday night, but his flight was cancelled. He is presently booked to come home on Wednesday night. So...the cat and I are holding down the fort.

Daughter has requested more baby hats. Apparently one that I knitted for him is now the only one that fits.
For the life of me, I can't remember what size I made. So, this weekend I knitted a couple for her to try for size. I also found a darling pattern here. I made one out of 100% cotton knit. When she tells me how it fits, I will make more.

Meanwhile, I haven't done any other sewing this week. On the Go is pin basted and ready to quilt. I just haven't started it yet.
That's it for me this week. I am keeping my fingers crossed for the NYC branch of the family and hope to be reunited with DH on Wednesday. Thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

On the Go!

The house quilt is off to the long armer. I am so nervous about this. After carefully making sure that all of those seams (ALL of those seams) were pressed down neatly, I had to fold the quilt top up and put it in a box. I know those seams will be a mess again when it comes out of the box. Will someone re-press those seams? Probably not. There is so much bulk from seams that I am worried there will be a problem with the quilting. I'll try not to think about that now because there is nothing I can do about it.

Next project: quilt for newborn grandson. I chose On the Go! by Melissa Corry of Happy Quilting. I just fell in love with this quilt when I saw it. I have followed her fabric choices exactly. I have no imagination. The top went together pretty quickly.
I did have a problem with the border, though. The fabric strips were too short to complete the side sashing. Fortunately, I had two charm squares in the border fabric left over so I was able to save the project. I know that I make mistakes, but I have reread and reread that pattern and I know that the width of fabric strips were just not long enough for this quilt. It was off by about 4.5 inches. Even I don't make cutting errors that are that big. Anyway, problem solved. Baby won't care if the sashing was pieced.

I think the back of this quilt is as cute as the front. I just love the main fabric with all the trucks, etc.
I have completed the applique, but I still have to zigzag around the edges. I am glad I remembered that before I attached the applique strip to the biggest part of the backing. As it is, I had already sewn the smaller section on so I will have to deal with a little bulk as I work my way around the appliques.

Thanks for stopping by.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Houses Ready to Quilt!

I decided to add only a simple black border. I had some other ideas early on, but with all the color going on in this quilt, I ultimately decided to keep it simple.
Now I am trying to decide if I will quilt this myself, with all those seam allowances and my 'just a beginner' skills, or if I should send it out to a long arm quilter. What would you do?

Friday, October 12, 2012

It is Together!

I knew it wouldn't take me very long to get this housing subdivision done once I could just spend some time sewing.
It feels great to see it in one piece. Now I am thinking about a border. I have solid black, but I am wondering about the width of the border. Is there a formula to follow that will be best, or is this something every quilter has to decide every time? I am kind of thinking I will want the black border to be wider than each small house block, but I am not sure.

Darn! Now that I am looking at the picture I have realized that I still have to add the sashing and cornerstones on the bottom border. Shoot. I'll do it in the morning. Sigh.

Monday, October 1, 2012

October Rabbit, Rabbit

Rabbit, rabbit! It's October. Another month gone. It is moving way too fast, especially with all my responsibilities at work. When I get past Oct. 15 I should be able to get back to my sewing. Can't wait. I am posting about my progress on Fresh Sewing Day on Lynn's blog. (See the button on the right side of my site).

Progress on the houses...pretty slow. Just haven't had machine time.
Here it is. All the rows are sewn and I am assembling the rows in to big sections. If I actually had a day to sew I could have this done in no time.
The last two single rows are laying on the table, partially pinned, and waiting to join the rest of the bunch. Sigh.

On Saturday, Sept. 29 I went to a Bonnie Hunter class in Shepherdsville, KY. I couldn't get into the classes when she was in Lexington. That would have been much closer to where I live, but I also would have had to clear a whole day's schedule at work. It is actually a good thing that I didn't try to do that. So DH packed the car and drove me to Shepherdsville, unpacked the car, set up my stuff in the class, and spent the day looking for something to do. How sweet is that?
Taken from
Taken from

The class was great. I learned a couple really good tips that I will use in my sewing from now on. Turns out some of my obsessive compulsive behaviors actually end up wasting time. I have to form some new habits.
Here are all of my precut strips, and 2.5" squares, and my 4.5" blocks for my Blazing Stars quilt. I completed one 8.5" block just so I could say that I completed a block. I think I really got a lot of sewing done in that class.

DH took the picture when I was talking, not when I was smiling. Oh well.

The best part, other than meeting Bonnie, was having 6 hours of sewing machine time with no guilt. If I had been at home, I would have been working on my big project for work; I would have felt too guilty to sit at the machine. I got 90+ 4.5" blocks done. Four of these will go into a larger block. I will need 99 of these larger blocks for the quilt. All of my cutting is done. So, I have another UFO, but it is like a kit that is ready to go.

Oh yes, and the best thing that happened in September. Jordan Andrew made an early appearance on September 24. Here he is with Mr. Precious.
As a rule, I don't put identifiable pictures of kids on my blog. I broke the rule this time.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Progress on the House Quilt

I have the houses in large sections with 5 more rows to assemble. Here is a close-up of the large, center house.
I couldn't find fabric with a picture that was the right proportion for the window, so I drew in a cat. I found clip art of a cat silhouette and printed it out in several sizes. When I chose the size I wanted I traced it onto the block using my black Pigma pen. It adds a little something to that otherwise blank space. Here are the sections so far.
It's getting there. With my time so limited I have to sew in small chunks of time instead of marathon sessions. It all adds up and I am making progress.

Thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Getting it Together

I have made a little progress on my houses. This is my really busy time of year at work, so I don't have much time to sew.
The rows are sewn, but they are not all sewn to each other. I did get my center house block made. I tried to put a few details on it that make it similar to my house. I selected the fabric because my house is made with light colored bricks. I put my address on the front. My front door also has an oval window. We have some small trees in the front. I put a pot of flowers by the entrance.
Here is a closer look. I think the window looks very bland in the middle of this light colored house. I haven't actually sewn the large house to the rows yet because I think I still need to add something. It would be cute to have a cat in the window or something. If I come across the right scale of fabric before I absolutely have to have it sewn in I will make a change to that window.

That's what I have been up to. Thanks for stopping by.

Friday, August 31, 2012

August FMQ

I worked on this at the beginning of the month and then didn't get another chance to work on my sample until today. I had a lesson on a long-arm quilting machine and I used this pattern to practice. (FYI-I would LOVE to have a long arm machine.) I can't get the rhythm of FMQ. I forget which way I need to go and I can't get even coverage. More than once I backed myself into a corner. I love the look of this design on Wendy's beautiful samples. It is just too hard for me.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

See What I Won!

Looky looky! I won a big ol' box of scraps from Minick & Simpson. The scraps are strips that are left over after the manufacturer makes the salesman sample cards.

I entered the giveaway on their blog.They gave away three boxes and I won one of them. Here they are all heaped together on my cutting table.
Here they are grouped by color. Aren't the colors fabulous? Creams and blues. The collection is called Indigo Crossing and it will be in quilt shops in February. In the meantime, I get to dream about what project I will use these little pretties for.
Thanks for stopping by.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

I'm Getting There!

I have finished piecing 365 scrap houses!
I have started putting together rows of small scrap houses.
 I have one caution to offer if you ever try this project, or if you do another paper piecing project. For some stupid reason (emphasis on stupid) I thought it would be important to leave some of the paper on the scrap houses.

I thought it would help me piece the project together. WRONG! What a pain in the neck. I stopped doing this at some time in the process. Now, when I get to some of the earlier houses that I pieced, I have to take the paper off the back. It would have been no problem to put the houses together without the paper. I have a consistent seam allowance, so I don't need the paper. OY! Don't make this mistake.

I will keep working on this as much as possible tomorrow, but I don't know how much time I can give to the project. Classes begin on Monday and I have some more preparation to get done.

Thanks for stopping by.