Wednesday, December 28, 2011

It's Later

Being later means it's quilting time!  In between preparations for Christmas, I was able to find some time to do some quilting. So now this top I made almost 20 years ago is finally quilted and waiting for a binding.

It wasn't a very quilty Christmas for me otherwise. Not complaining as I have just about all a gal could want in the world of quilting. One quilty thing I was excited about this week though was how I reorganized my quilts in storage. When I saw Joy a few weeks ago, we traded my quilting services for a quiltrack/ladder. So I put it up in the warehouse and hung just the quilts I use on it. This might simplify things a bit for me.

Even better, after that, I cleaned out the closet and made room to hang some quilts from skirt/pant hangers. I saw this on Judy Martin's website years ago. Lord, why I didn't try this sooner I will never understand, but I love it. Hanging the quilts like this will make it easier to access them and without the weight of them being piled on top of one another the creases won't be so sharp and maybe permanent. I am sure it would still be a good idea to refold in the opposite direction every year or so.  I had Mark move the pole up so I can hang  up to 72" long quilts. The longer ones would have to be on a pole up at the ceiling or folded and clamped at opposite ends. Either way, I ran out of room in the closet.  I will have to put Mark to work on that. 
 Have you noticed that my quilts are mostly folded wrong side out. I do that so they don't fade or pick up stains otherwise. I also keep a dust cloth on the piles cause I don't know when the cat may go up there and sleep or ... (ewww) and I also keep the blinds drawn in that room.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Birds in the Air

 I played with my Birds in the Air blocks yesterday. I usually find this sort of activity very soothing but lately these puzzles have left me feeling frustrated that I had another decision to make. In other words, I've made over 100 of these little blocks, I need to decide what to do with them next. Here are a few of my options.

 My first thought was to arrange them as shown to the left.Then I tried a few more arrangements. The only decision I made was to make some large half-square triangle units to play with them.   And then again, maybe I can use all these ideas in one quilt.

I decided I didn't need the stress right now and put them away and got ready for the meeting with the church ladies today. I just took in the two quilts I quilted and the two blocks I made for Mary and Rita for the block exchange.There was little other show and tell and all we did was put together kits for the next raffle quilt.

When I got home, I peeled off 30 quilts  that were spread out on the twin bed upstairs and folded them with 3 folds each. My sister helped me put them on the bed a year and a half ago and I found it wasn't a good way for me to keep them.  It was very difficult to pull one out to use when  there were not only those quilts on the bed, but also a big pile of smaller quilts folded on top of them. I also reorganized the remaining quilts and tops. It was getting a little out of hand up there. I was looking for a few in particular. The wool quilt to finish, a top to quilt for my daughter, and another two to put on my bed. I like to swap those out every few months.

I will be back up there in a day or two because I have some tops down here that I want to move upstairs and already I need to get ready for a lecture on Jan 2nd!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Quilting through the holidays

I hope everyone has been enjoying the holiday season.  I don't have projects to finish for Christmas. But I have got one or two I want to start. Those gifts are for recipients that may read this, so I will share later.

These two quilts went to the women's shelter a few weeks ago with the others from church. I love the nine-patch.

Here is another one of two that I quilted for the shelter. I did freehand feathers over the whole thing.  I see you have to pay attention to quilting the same size and space across the whole thing if you don't use a panto.  It was fun.

Last night I visited a friend I see maybe twice a year. She had "stuff" for me. I was expecting her orphan blocks and sure enough she had a nice pile of blocks we can use. But besides this she had two small boxes of fabric from a friend's mother's estate for our comfort quilts. I took it home to sort. No wonder she didn't keep it for herself. There wasn't much good in it. The pile I pitched was mostly small, old, wrinkled poly blend scraps. A small pile went to the garage for the rag bag. Another small pile I will pass on to one of the church ladies to decide if she wants to cut it into pieces we could use.  There was barely a straight edge in all the scraps. I am not so sure she was really a quilter. Maybe she did applique or other sewing. The good pile was has half yard and one yard pieces. I'm glad there wasn't more. We have so much fabric that is not getting used fast enough.
There was also a black quilt batt in her pile of stuff for me. Little did she know that it was wool. Which reminds me I have a wool quilt I started eons ago that I want to finish soon so we can use it this winter. I guess I should go upstairs and wade through the quilts to find it. I hope I will be able to report on that by the end of the year.  I didn't have too many finishes this year. It would be nice to add it to the list.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Sorting Scraps again

Last week I delivered 3 loads of quilts that the church ladies made this year. 24 baby quilts to the hospital,  22 kid quilts to the County Holiday Care program and 18 even bigger quilts to the Women's Shelter. I took a few pictures to share over my next few posts. Here's some.

I was anxious to get them out of the house.  I am still in clearing out and organizing mode after emptying mom's apartment. So this weekend I tackled my basket of scraps on my cutting table, and rather than just sorting them and filing them away, I cut the short ends of strips into squares and triangles. My supply of those was getting low. I also spent some time deciding what to do with them all. So I hope to make a sample block or two of those and share those with you in the next week or two. Some of what I cut was for my on-going  Birds-in-th-Air quilt like the purple block on the right. I have over 100 now, so I think I will start playing with those and decide what I will do with them next.