Quilts for Sale

Monday, July 25, 2016

Just a little behind

It would seem that I lost interest in blogging or even quilting. It's just that I've been a bit busy. Mark isn't much better since he herniated his disk 10 weeks ago. Tomorrow he's going in for surgery. Hopefully things will get back to normal soon.

I still need to locate my camera but till then I found this picture I haven't shared yet. I finished the top a few weeks back. When I last posted about it I hadn't decided how I would arrange the blocks, either on point or square. I went with on point and this time I remembered to sew them together into the sections shown here instead of diagonal rows. I really don't like doing it in diagonal rows. This method made it much easier to handle. I love it. In fact I have another one at studio 3 that I'm assembling the same way. With luck I can show them both to you soon. I just might be hanging around the house a little more than usual to make sure Mark doesn't get into trouble post-op.

 During the heat wave of the last few days I've actually done some sewing at home. (As opposed to at Studio 3.) The ladies of the Quilting Hands of St. Peters have set aside their quilting for a while in favor of Little Pillowcase Dresses. The pattern also gives directions using yardage and that's what we are doing to use up some of our fabric. Our stash has grown considerably and it's getting older by the hour. The intent of the whoever came up with the pattern was to send the dresses to little girls in Africa. But our church has a mission in Haiti the poorest country in our hemisphere so we intend to send them there. I think we have about 50 started. Again we kinda work assembly line style.  I put together about a dozen in the last two days.

 I'm linking up with Judy again. It's been a long time. I'm glad I didn't miss seeing the quilt top that she's been working on all year.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Challenges Along the Way

Sometimes life can be a struggle. Today I'm struggling with the computer and my cellphone. Minor challenges really. If I tried a little more often it probably wouldn't be such a challenge.  Of course, I realize I haven't posted much lately. Did you notice it's been since I started quilting across the street at Studio 3?  It didn't help that now I have a cell phone with which to take pictures. I prefer an old camera that no longer works. And I don't have a big flannel wall there and I really don't like the photos of quilts on the floor!  I know. Excuses, excuses.

I have been quilting a bit though I admit if I can be outside I'd rather be there. usually as it heats up outside I turn to quilting but I've been busy with a few other odd things. Like taking care of my husband for one. A month ago he ruptured a disk and has been in terrific pain since.  Since sitting down to write a new post and having trouble trying to upload photos from my phone I've decided I will just have to take a camera across the street with me more often.

When I am outside I am either in my sedge meadow or the woods. The meadow is pretty happy that we burned it this spring and is surprising me with patches of flowers I've not seen blooming there before like these Blue Flag Iris.

Saturday, April 30, 2016

2 months plus

  1. Wow! It's been over 2 months since I've written. I have the great excuse that I have been busy, however it hasn't been just with quilting. I've been working on 5 different projects off and on depending on who I am sewing with. No, I don't get confused. I pretty much sew on auto-pilot. I like that it gives me time between working on one project cause it gives me time to think about how I want to proceed. Decisions on fabrics and settings aren't always taken lightly.
  2.  About 2 years ago I made a few of these stars with my scraps but couldn't decide what to do with them. I get tired of sashing easily. Then 2 months ago I came across them and suddenly decided to alternate them with the Square-in-a-square blocks. Once I had a plan I had to make more.  Pretty happy with it. Not going with a border. That might mean to quilt it quickly before I change my mind.
  3. Then I made these X-blocks. Just one for a demonstration but before you know it I had another 15 made. I like when that happens. This one too is going to alternate with Square- in-a-square blocks. They are the same size as the stars above and when I was playing with them on the flannel wall I decided to stop wasting time thinking about it and just do it. Still have to decide if I want to set them straight or on point.
  4. The courthouse steps and stars are waiting for me to attach the border. Otherwise that top is done. 
  5. And I'm doing a spring bunny  wallhanging with applique or cut and paste depending on how you see it. 
  6. Now that I think about it, I've also been working on another sampler with the Thursday girls at Studio 3. That one is a mystery to me. The setting anyway.
  7. And soon I hope to start a blue and orange quilt. 
  8. And get back to some longarm quilting. But I've been busy burning. 10 brush piles this year, both stacking and burning and we burned the marsh. That was like 10 acres. Exhausting. And now the wildflowers are blooming. Do I live in a park?
  9. Seriously, I don't know how these numbers showed up and I couldn't get rid of them so I went with them. They mean nothing.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Happy in a Heap

I sure enjoyed making these blocks. I just might try making this design again some day with brighter colors. But I'm on this Civil War fabric kick right now and striving to use this heap of scraps, so this is what I used.  I went to Studio 3 for an hour the other day and made 5 more blocks. Went there again last night and I made the rest.They still need a little work then I will put them together and even consider adding a border. I'm ready to move on to the next two projects but I'm going to make myself finish this top first. I like it when inspiration hits and I'm anxious to get going on a new project. I hate it when something gets in the way. I guess we all do. But what a nice distraction to be in my way.

It looks like besides the mild winter we've had, we'll be having an early spring. We missed all the snow that blew east of here, yesterday I guess. 20 robins in the yard this afternoon. They're only about 2 weeks early. Buds on the bushes are starting to get fat already.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Catching Up

Wow! It's been over 5 weeks since I last posted. I wonder what's changed here in blogland. I've kept busy this winter and yes, I've done some quilting. I think I haven't posted because I haven't been working much on my own things. I quilted another 6 comfort quilts and took them in to church for the other ladies to bind. And I've continued to meet with the others at Studio 3. Thursdays crowd will be starting Barbara Brackman's Civil War Sampler blocks. We're not all using Civil War prints either. I will be using purple batiks. It should be fun.

A number of my projects have been put on hold. I think I need to install a big flannel wall at Studio 3. Progress seems to cease when it gets to a point that I want to lay it out on my big wall. I have a hard time working without it.  I bring it home to finish but then I don't work on it. This is the latest that I've begun. I've seen pictures of this around for some time so I can't say who the designer is or I'd gladly give them credit. I think I will just make this one a generous lap size.

Weather permitting Mark and I have been working in the woods. And we've had a mild winter so we are out there often. We've been cutting and stacking some of the brush that we killed last year. We've burned 5 brush piles so far. Some of it we stacked for permanent brush piles for the wildlife and will leave in the woods. Still more we will chip.  Pretty much all were cutting and burning is prickly ash or invasive buckthorn. The woods is looking great and even though there is an end in sight I wonder why we bother. Will we ever "finish" and who will maintain it after we're gone?   I love working out there much more than working out at a gym. Now we're eyeing the elm that is moving in.

I have a few orders to pack up then I think I will visit a few blogs starting with Judy's Linky Party. Gee, is she still doing hosting them?. I know she doesn't get to quilting as often as she might like either.

Monday, January 11, 2016

Digging Deeper

The orphan blocks have waited long enough.  Poor things. They weren't exciting me very much till after working with them a little longer. Then I wished I had more blocks to make it bigger cause I was liking how it was going. So I dug a little deeper.  I knew I had more orphan blocks but had set them aside to use in a different quilt. I wanted primarily scrappy blocks in this one. Hmmmm. Maybe that would be tooooo many scraps.  Gotta think on that. 

Then after we sorted through all the fabric at church that was recently donated I thought I needed to sort through the fabric in storage here that belongs to the group. I knew I'd find some more pieces and units mixed in with the scraps.    Hmmm. Maybe. This is partially sewn together already. I found that plain strips (like the frame around the bears paw) offers a little relief from all the busy blocks. I'll let it sit for a while. The sun is down now and I want to get downstairs and quilt.

Tuesday I took 10 comfort quilts in for the girls to bind. The pile of quilt tops waiting  here continues to grow. They are not all mine. I brought a few more home to add to my pile. I haven't counted mine in a while. It's not easy cause they aren't all in one pile but scattered around 2 rooms and a closet and suitcases. Many bloggers keep lists  but I'd rather quilt. Usually anyway. So I'm hoping I can get another dozen quilted in the next month or two.

Here's another comfort quilt top that uses my Thirtysomething Onlies units I made when I demonstrated the technique. Does that count as multi-tasking?  As good as I am at that I never did a good job of planning to put my demonstration pieces into  something really useful.

I'm linking with Judy at Patchwork Times and her Linky Party she calls Design Wall Monday and I will see if there is more time to link with any other parties.  They CAN be very inspiring.

Monday, December 28, 2015

My Quilting Marathon

This has been the best quilting marathon I've ever participated in. I should do this more often. The pile is 7 quilts deep. I thought I only had 2 or 3 more comfort quilts here but I forgot about the half dozen of my own tops I decided to contribute. I am sincerely hoping  this trend will continue for the next few months. Perhaps as long as I have everything I need then it will. Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.  I'm glad the church basement ladies will do the bindings even though I don't mind that step.

I musta made this blue one over 20 years ago. It is next in line to get quilted, then I will donate it too. I will do a casual custom quilting job it. That means it will be simply and lightly custom/freehand quilted as opposed to the overall meander I might for some of the other comfort quilts.
And this one I just finished. All of the blocks except two I made to go together. Want to guess which two?  I framed them each with a different fabric cause we don't have the yardage to make sashing  all the same. And really I don't like sashing anyway. I made them all so they all came in the same size. But if you are working with blocks from different sources like a block lottery or exchange through a guild it would work to add wider sashing to the smaller blocks then trim them all down to the same size. It would also be an opportunity to repeat or introduce some new colors to make the colors  work together better.  I've had just about enough of the sampler quilts for a while After demonstrating twice a week for over a year I still have a mountain of blocks left. In fact, the blocks I arranged on the wall a few weeks ago are still there though I did make a few additions.

I was feeling a bit overwhelmed with the donation of fabric left for us at church last week. I haven't gone through it all but feel better about it now. Especially since I found backs for several of my tops. Perhaps when the roads clear after this storm I will go back and go through the remaining 6 boxes. It was fun even though it feels a bit overwhelming. Sure hope there are no orphan blocks in the mix.

Linking up to Judy's Design Wall Monday. 

Monday, December 14, 2015

Quilting Cause Its Dark

I pushed the blocks around a little  on the flannel wall.  Wasn't I clever to add corners to those boring nine-patch blocks to make blocks like in the last quilt I made. They started with 3" cut squares. I wish I'd done my quilt in that size. They made 10 1/2" blocks where I made 12" blocks in my quilt.  What am I going to do with a king size quilt. I don't even want a king size bed. Comparing this weeks and last weeks photo you would notice I found some more triangle units laying around. I may end up incorporating them as well.

I haven't put lots of thought into the quilt on the wall cause it has been so nice here for Dec. We've been cutting and stacking brush in the woods to burn later when we get some snow. It's cleaning up so nice. And once again I can't wait to enjoy the woods next year. And since it's been so nice we made this pair from a birch tree we cut down a few months ago.


It does get dark early. It's the only reason I can think as to how I actually quilted a comfort quilt this week. Tonight I will get another one loaded and begin quilting.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Sample, Reject and Surplus Blocks

It's been a quilty couple of days. Tuesday we met at church to start the next raffle quilt. It went well. Some more fabric was donated. A few nice big pieces for backs and I think Nancy donated a handful of orphan blocks.  We like that. Thank you. Some of the blocks went well with one of the piles that didn't have enough to go with them when I sorted 2 days earlier.  I'd say now they do, wouldn't you agree? Especially since I was rummaging in another box here the other day and came across another assorted dozen blocks I overlooked last weekend.

After planning so many more sampler quilts over the weekend I thought I better plan to work on one next. I will need to use spacers with all the odd sizes in this collection of blocks. I think the upper four 9-patch blocks will need to be separated, enlarged or trimmed or something else; can't leave them like that. Also not sure I will leave the group of same pattern blocks together. Maybe some but not all. Any suggestions???

Yesterday at Studio 3 I worked some more on my blue and taupe quilt. I'd misplaced one of the fabrics, but finally found it. I was there this morning too but didn't have a chance to work on it except to square up some Square-in-a-square units. Mark went out tonight and I spent an hour putting out a few Christmas decorations.  Rudy got pretty excited when he heard the BIG jingle bells. His favorite toy has a little ribbon and jingle bell tied on the end of a string on the end of a stick.

Tomorrow after Studio 3 I WILL start quilting the Pine Tree tabletopper. Unless something better comes up. Happy December everyone.

Monday, November 30, 2015

New Nine-Patch

Our 10" of snow melted within 4 days and now it is just cold and rainy. Still good weather for quilting. The cats are getting along fine and rather enjoy chasing each other around a bit every morning. They aren't as much of a distraction now so I was able to get my new 9-patch quilt done. Okay, the top anyway. I still go with "The quilt is finished when the top is done".

  It's about 100" square. A bit generous for my queen bed so I don't plan on adding any borders.  I admit I kinda jumped into this project with out thinking too much about it. I mighta made smaller blocks otherwise. Maybe with the next one.
Actually I have been thinking about what I want to work on this winter and more and more often I think I'd like to work on something with smaller pieces.

Dear daughter was over the other day. I rounded up all the orphan blocks between here and Studio 3 and we spent the afternoon sorting them again into piles for potential comfort quilts. We made 8 piles with at least a dozen blocks each.at least. Some piles had less - those we filed away till we collect or make more so we have enough. As it is those 8 piles won't likely be finished quilts real soon. We have a shortage of fabric for sashing or borders and especially backs. But we had a good time.

I also have my tree table topper top done. Unless or except for any stars I may decide to add. I am thinking little ones just at the top of the trees in the corners. I didn't want it to scream Christmas so no red.  Center is intentionally left bare figuring there may well be a centerpiece placed there. I plan to quilt it this week. Wish me luck. 

Speaking of Christmas, we don't plan on putting up a tree this year cause Rudy would have a field day with it and the ornaments. I can't seem to find someplace to put a small one up high out of his reach. One morning I woke up to find him munching on the end of a spool of thread. He had at least a foot of the thread end in his mouth. Another morning he chewed the end off my husbands hearing aid. It was under warranty. Another morning he'd knocked my glasses to the floor and the patches for my next block into the trash. And people couldn't believe that I didn't want a kitten. Imagine that. Like I said, a bit of a distraction- but fun.

I think I will check out the linky party at Judys and postpone bills till tomorrow. 

Monday, November 23, 2015

A Little Distraction

I wanted to get a second cat after I felt Buster had adjusted to living here. It took him a while, but about 2 weeks ago, after more than 3 months here he finally started sleeping on the bed during the day without us. I thought that said something. So about 10 days ago we brought another cat home so now Buster has a brother. We're calling him Rudy. He's supposedly 2 years old but plays like he's only 6 months. Buster got bent out of shape for a while but he's pretty much accepted him now.
I wasn't really looking for a distraction from a new cat. I was looking forward to some serious sewing time. This weekend's storm dropped about 10" of snow, a little more than the guys wanted to see for opening weekend of the gun deer hunt. Usually when we expect snow I plan to do a bunch of sewing. I know I will have long stretches of time alone when Mark goes out to clear the 5 driveways he always does.  And it used to be the guys would head to the north woods for a weekend of deer hunting. I was looking forward to that when he retired. It hasn't happened yet cause they don't go north anymore. All this means is that I haven't been able to sew like I expected. But maybe that's a good thing, since I got a bit of a sore back with all the sewing that I did do.

I am actively working on 3 different projects. The blue and gray 2 block quilt I plan to finish putting together at Studio 3 so I didn't work on that one. I'm also working on a Christmas Tree table topper. That was a Studio 3 project I can finish there as well. At home this weekend I decided to work on a quilt with using the Album block.

  If you recall, I made a sample block about 2 years ago and decided against doing a whole quilt with the block. I couldn't stand constructing
the thing with those weird diagonal rows of patches. Silly me. That is not the easy way to construct it. One day it came to me that it would be far easier to make the 9 patch in the center and then construct 4 identical corner units to surround the 9 patch. So much better.

I made 25 blocks and  didn't want to stop. Considered making 2 quilts. Whoa. What would I do with a second quilt using the same blocks???  So I stopped to consider how I was going to set the blocks.  Here's a few.
 It's Design Wall Monday at Judy's.
See me there.

Monday, November 9, 2015

Float Your Star Points

The next raffle quilt for church will use this 8 pointed star variation.
 I call Catchfly.  I've modified it a bit so the star points float. This will allow us to trim all the blocks to the same size before joining them together. We won't lose our points and there is an added bonus of less bulk in the seam allowance. We all like that. Make yours either 9" or 12".

             Block finishes 9" x 9"

      From the light star fabric, cut:

1 center square
3 1/2" and
4 rectangles, 2 1/2" x 4 1/4".
Place pairs of rectangles Wrong Sides Together,
and cut once diagonally to make 8 triangles.

  From the medium or dark background fabric, cut:

4 equilateral triangles 4" tall (see below)
and 4 corner squares 3 1/2"

      You can use any 60 degree triangle ruler or your usual ruler with a 60 degree line on it.  Place the 60 degree line of your ruler on the long edge of your fabric strip and make the first cut.

   Rotate the ruler and place the 60 degree line of your ruler on the angled cut. You will see an equilateral triangle under the ruler. Cut your first triangle.  Rotate your ruler between these two positions to cut the 4 triangles.

Sew the star point triangles to the background triangles, matching the angles at the top center of the unit. It doesn't matter which side you sew on first, which piece is on top or which end you start sewing from. You will need to press the first one back before you add the second triangle.

Square up these units next. Center the unit in the square by placing the 1 3/4" line on your ruler at the points where the two seams meet. Trim away the excess. Be sure not to trim off the seam allowance at the top.

 Rotate the unit and measure a 3 1/2" square. Trim away the excess.

 The units are ready to go in the blocks. Join with the squares in rows, pressing seams toward the squares. Sew the rows together and press.

For a 12" finished block, cut
background equilateral triangles 5" tall and  corner squares 4 1/2"
star center 4 1/2" and star points from 3" x 5 1/4" rectangles cut once diagonally WST.
Trim the units to 4 1/2" square.

 Here you can see how the points of the star meet at the edge of the block when using the Tri/Recs tools. The floating points in the star made with this method will finish 1/2" from the raw edge of the block.

 I call the units in this block Sixtysomething units, since there are three 60 degree angles that come together at the top of the unit. Check out my Thirtysomething Block Book to see more quilt designs using 30 and 60 degree angles in square patchwork blocks.

It's cold outside. Time to join some linky blog parties and quilt. Let's check out Judy's first.


Saturday, October 24, 2015

Bloggers Quilt Festival

Amy's hosting her semi-annual online quilt festival again. I've participated in the past but since I've gone to Quilt Market a few times in recent years I was too busy to join in the fun. I like this kind of show - where you don't have to ship or haul your quilts anywhere. There's prizes too, though they don't interest me! Not quite as good as a real show of course but still fun. The rules state the quilt must be completed in the last year. At least that is what I am going  with.

 I pieced Grape Salad a while ago, put it in my last book but didn't quilt it till this spring.

This one's in the original design category.  I could probably put near all mine in that category. I've combined two kinda traditional blocks but adapted them to my Thirtysomething technique. I love two block quilt designs.

Quilted on my longarm. I don't like heavy quilting, gorgeous as it is. I think the quilts are softer with less quilting. That's my excuse for not doing it anyway.

You are invited to browse my blog more of course. And likewise, I will browse yours.Thanks for visiting.

Monday, October 19, 2015

In the Groove

It's been feeling real good to do some sewing. I don't feel like I am getting very far though. But since there is no hurry that's ok. I have about half the blocks done for my latest. I'm only showing what fits on the wall at Studio 3 here. I'm going to need a name for this thing. Any suggestions?

I also dug into my drawer of Civil War prints. OOhhhh that felt good. No concrete plans yet but they're formulating.

I've also finalized plans for our next raffle quilt. I will share the plans later but for now I'll just say it will be blue and cream and use this star pattern. I had the gals at Studio 3 try out my directions. I've chosen this star cause the way I make 'em the points float so we can trim the blocks to all the same size if needed. And since as many as a dozen ladies may make the stars there's a good chance we will need to do some trimming

Tomorrow is quilting at church. Our local nursing home has asked us for muffs for the residents hands. We love the idea. Basically all we need to do is make a little quilt lined with fleece and sew it into a tube. Okay, just not in that order.  I wouldn't be surprised if we make a few extra for ourselves!

Time to join the linky party at Judy's. Guess I will be blogging for a while.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Done enough

Once again I have a quilt top done except for the final border. I started this last spring but since the colors suggest autumn I lost interest in working on it. I finally attached the pieced border about 3 weeks ago. I left it at Studio 3 and since I don't have a big flannel wall there I haven't taken the picture till I brought it home. It was a struggle for me to use the big prints in these blocks. I am still uncomfortable with it. Anyone want to buy a quilt top? it's 78" square right now. Make me an offer.

The project I posted about last time is now at Studio 3 so I will work on that occasionally when I am there.  I have a pile of them there so when the mood strikes I can take my pick. That means there is nothing in progress here at home. Lots of ideas spin through my head and where it will stop no one knows. I want to put something on the frame downstairs too.

 Our church fall festival was this last weekend. We put out most of our quilts and managed to sell about a dozen for a pittance. Better than for nothing I am told. I have half a dozen tops here for church that I will consider quilting before I do more of mine. Once it gets good and cold outside .  .  .
Hmmm. Monday. Let's go check out the quilts at Judy's Linky Party.

Monday, September 28, 2015

No Excuses

I suppose summer is officially over. We've had a beautiful fall so far and I am outside enjoying it as much as I can. We are supposed to get rain this week so maybe I will have a chance to catch up in the sewing room. Does that sound like an excuse?

I've been working on a new tool/ruler I'm calling the 3 in 1 Tool. With it you can cut triangles, trapezoids and squares like you see in this block. It should be ready for Market next month.  I won't be doing a book to go with it. It's really a pretty basic tool and I think an improvement over what is currently available. You should be able to get it from me or through QuiltersRule.com the manufacturer.

Occasionally I sew at home. A few weeks ago I started a new 2 block quilt. I've only got 9 of the 49 blocks done. Yes it will be bed size.

And this just hints at the effect I will get when I add the second block. All design decisions have not been made yet. I may have to adjust my plans if I don't have all the fabric I need. I don't want to be buying more if I don't need to.

I am getting anxious to sew in the cellar a.k.a. quilting in Studio 2. I don't really enjoy the basement when I can be outside. It's not like I am looking forward to snow but that is when I enjoy using the longarm down there the most. Ever feel like life is too short?