Tag Archives: stash

Many Hands Make…

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Many quilt blocks! At each retreat, each person receives pieces of fabric and a block pattern and has the opportunity to make a block that will go int0 a charity quilt. This year the fabric and pattern made two hourglass blocks. This activity is totally optional, but since there is a drawing for a great prize, everyone participates. I truly believe that even if there wasn’t the possibility of a prize, they would all sew a block. The generosity of quilters has no bounds!! There was enough of one color to make a child quilt. This top will go to our guild’s fearless charity quilt leader who will quilt it, return it to me, and I will bind it.

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And there’s more – enough for a lap quilt! I’m attending a workshop for a few days and during my free time will piece these blocks together.

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I love that while we are treating ourselves to time away, concentrated sewing time, and so much fun, we are doing something special for others. What a great way to share our talents! And this year there is a second opportunity to join in on the fun at the Quilt & Sew-In, November 10-13, 2016. Sign-ups have begun, so secure your place for fun today!

Although the list has grown, I do continue to make progress on my projects. Hopefully my next project update will be reduced in numbers. But…I’m still having fun!

Progress Chart

3 Day Workshop Prep

In a few weeks I will be attending a 3 day workshop. I don’t usually do workshops, but will I not only learn some new techniques, but it will be a get-away and I am sure to meet some wonderful quilters.

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Paws for Comfort

There is some prep so I thought I’d better do it now, because when I get back from the Quilt & Sew-In next week, I might not have the energy to tackle it! After searching through my stash I chose a cute dog and cat fabric that I used when I designed the Paws for Comfort quilt. Cutting instructions for 26 blocks were sent and the cutting is to be done prior to the workshop. It was suggested we label zip lock bags and have one for each block. I do at times use zip lock bags, but I did not want to deal with 26 of them, so…

Notebook I

A notebook with plastic protectors! I have the picture and cutting instructions for each block in the front of a protector and the fabric for that block behind the pattern. I can just flip through the book – easy and organized! For safety, I put a large hair elastic around the notebook – should it be turned upside down, the pieces won’t all come tumbling out of the notebook.

Notebook II

I’ll also have some blank sheets so I can take notes as the old memory is not so dependable any more. I’ve completed all the cutting  and it feels grand to be prepared weeks ahead of time! I’m really excited to be doing so much fun sewing in the next few weeks!

Hospice Quilt Finish

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Yeah! A finish of the best kind because it is a charity quilt for Hospice. I am part of a small group of 6 women who meet at a nearby church and we make quilts for Hospice. Our fearless leader and extremely talented quilter, Jean N., started the group and even taught several of the ladies to quilt. A couple of fabric companies sent us some great samples. I grabbed this group and did a simple HST quilt.

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Sue C. from my quilt guild generously machine quilted – and not on a long arm, but on her domestic! See how she cleverly mimicked the flower design from the fabric onto the white triangles? And the border – wow! The flowers go all the way around.

All the quilts we make this year will be donated to the local Hospice office in December and they will in turn gift them to patients for us. Except for making a quilt for a dear loved one, I think I enjoy doing this the most.

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Kaffe Table Topper

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As if I didn’t have enough projects in the process, I started a new one about a week ago. I was going through my bin of Kaffe Fasset fabric and decided I wanted a small table topper for my dining room.  I began sketching 6″ finished blocks and away I went. On the eighth block I had more than a screw loose – I lost it completely! I had to take it out six times! No, it wasn’t difficult – as you can see, none of them are. My quilting brain had just gone to sleep (comatose more like it)!

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The spiral quilting really shows up well on the back.

 

As soon as I had the blocks together I cut my backing and batting and sandwiched it so it was ready to quilt the next morning. I was going to do a sort of loop-d-loop free motion and then realized it would be the perfect size for a spiral. I have wanted to try one for quite some time now. It was really easy! The very beginning is a little tough, and you can see in the pics the center is a little wonky, but once I got going, it was easy. I just followed around with my walking foot. At one point, though, I had to stop for a minute – it was making me dizzy! I did the loop-d-loops on the borders, got the binding on, and had the table topper on my dining room table that afternoon. Instant gratification! Now I am a bit more motivated to get to a project or two that has been hanging around for a long, long time.

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Spring Table Runner

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On sale precut hexies led to this quick project. I did not want to English paper piece, so I cut a hexie from card stock and pressed each fabric hexie around it. Using a bit of steam helped each hold it’s shape. I then placed the hexies on the background and held in place with dots of Elmer’s white glue. I’ve wanted to practice with my new Sashiko and this was perfect! I am pleased to say that I can now wind bobbins and thread the Sashiko like a big girl!

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And, I love Spring in the south. The daffodils never disappoint and the Hellebores have been blooming for about a month now; beautiful week, it’s in the 70’s. It does, however, get into the 80’s much too soon so I’m going to enjoy it while I can! Please know that as a transplanted Yankee, I’m not really complaining!!

A New Machine!

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This makes number 4!  I have my Bernina that I do most of my sewing with, and it never leaves home. Then there is the Singer Featherweight.  It is a collectible and sews like a little dream, especially if I have straight sewing that I can chain piece, it is now my go-to machine. I have a Pfaff Passport – weighs only 17 pounds and travels to retreats and sew-ins. It doesn’t even live in my studio – it goes from the hall closet to the car and back. And the newest addition to my sewing family – the Babylock Sashiko! I have been eyeing this specialty machine for some time now. Basically, it’s stitches look like hand sewing. If you’ve ever seen hand Sashiko stitching, it’s quite lovely and can now be done by machine.

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I’ve been getting the feel of it and learning how to thread it. It uses a bobbin thread only and is very different from standard sewing machines. I Sashiko quilted this table runner. It’s a lot of straight lines because I wanted to get the feel of the machine. I have more projects lined up and will next try curve stitching . I am not a collector of sewing machines, so this is my last addition. Pretty sure…

Works in Progress – I have decided to only keep track of actual WIPs, not projects in boxes that have not actually been started. The list is a now a little easier to swallow and not quite so daunting. (green highlite depicts progress made)

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Snow and Sew!

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Friday it began snowing here and then turned to sleet. Snow in the South is a big deal. We don’t go anywhere, we worry about losing power due to ice, and the grocery stores get wiped out. Hubby and I enjoyed homemade soups and the warmth of the wood burning stove. It was all good news for me and my fellow quilters – we sat our sewing machines and watched the white stuff from our warm studios!

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I’m working a on Kim Diehl quilt the past few days. It is both pieced and appliqued. The center portion is on my design wall. All the applique pieces are prepped and one panel is being appliqued. The applique on this project is being done by hand – something I’ve wanted to do for a very long time. It’s slow going, but am happy with the results.

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This is the pile of half square triangles I am piecing to make 88 hourglass blocks for the border. I enjoy the cutting, love the sewing, but am not looking forward to pressing all those seams open! Yes, it takes longer to press them open, but I like the results oh so much more – no ridges. This afternoon I’ll look for a good movie on Amazon Prime and work on the applique. I think most households in this region will be watching the Panthers play in the playoffs. We do not watch sports, but admittedly we are routing for the Panthers and will probably switch on the game from time to time. Go team!

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Scrapbuster – A Work in Progress

About a year ago I put a pile of 2 1/2″ green print squares at my sewing machine and began a “leader ender” project. This is a Bonnie Hunter idea that allows you to make 2 quilts at once! I wanted to set the small squares off with a 4 1/2″ square that was a green on white print.  At first I had the greens in groups of four, but decided to change things up a bit and make it a block of 6 (two rows of three). I loved the look, and setting it on point, but was not able to have an even edge with all of the white blocks in a row. It just didn’t line up because of the odd size. That’s okay – I really like it! And, I think the quilt police have finally given up on me! I have used a lime green print for the border. Amazing how it brings out all the different greens in the quilt top. I also added an outside border that somewhat mimicked the quilt pattern. I find that borders like these really help to highlight the main part of the quilt.

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corner border (Large) It is now all sandwiched and ready to quilt, which I am about to do myself. Machine quilting is definitely my weak point, so there’s no telling when the WIP will be a finished project. I am going to make myself enjoy the process and pat myself on the back knowing that I am stretching myself – a lot.

Polka Dot Village

Polka Dot Village

I am so excited that my Polka Dot Village is done! About 3 years ago Ellen Guerrant did a workshop for our guild using her “Tartan Town” pattern. It is a fun and whimsical design. There were about 20 of us and we all brought our piles of small stash pieces – colorful and whimsical. We shared mightily – as though none of us had ever seen so many different fabrics! In true quilter fashion the project got put away when I got home. Finally, about 2 year’s later, it once again saw daylight. I had more fabric choosing to do – who knew I would spend so much time for little windows and doors?

Pink House

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Now it is done and is hanging above our stairs leading down to our family room and my sewing studio. (Not a good place to get pics, but I wasn’t about to have us get the extension ladder to get it down.) I love how cheerful it is. Each house block has a bird – even an owl on the one rooftop! This is also another one of my UFO finishes for our guild’s challenge.  Only 3 more to go!

Stashbuster – Charm Pack Quilt

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Last year a friend and I went to a textile wholesale warehouse sale.  I was looking for neutrals (I seem to have everything else!) I found a great white on white and a gray and white pinstripe.  Of course, I had to check everything else out!  We found batik charm packs at a great price and we loved the fabric line.  We each bought several as our plan was to each make similar quilts from the charm packs.  I found a pattern that we both liked and I began the process. (This is also one of the UFOs from my guild’s challenge).

Hint: If you are going to use a charm pack, check the pieces before you begin to cut and sew.  I assumed that the charms, being die cut, would be perfect 5″ squares.  Not the case.  I have a die cut machine and my cut pieces come out perfect. In this case, I had to square up each and every charm.  Some were just a tiny bit off, others were 1/8″ off.  Add all those up and it will really mess up your work!

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But I am not sorry that I purchased these.  I used a variation of the split nine patch – 2 of the corner squares are pinwheels, then you “split” the nine patch.  I love the end results.  The pink border and brown binding really make it pop.  This quilt is intended as a gift and now just needs a name and a label.

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By the way, I am not recommending you avoid precuts – but do check them.