Monday, November 25, 2013

Better on the Bed

As expected I finished my quilt top, Ladies in Waiting. I'd like  a good flat shot of it on the wall, but it is a bit too big to fit there and I didn't feel like climbing to put it up either. Maybe when the light in the room is better I can do that. That is usually in winter when the sun is shining on the snow and the room is brighter. The flash on my camera is not as effective when I get clear across the room to take the photo.

Meanwhile I continue to work on projects scattered about the room. I guess I don't need to go into the closet looking for work afterall.   As I look about my room I see finished blocks waiting for some setting fabric. Borders waiting for me to purchase more black thread. Borders to go on another quilt top that Sue had removed before she decided to give it to the Comfort Quilt group. And at least 3 quilts waiting for binding. No doubt there is more if I look. But my focus right now is really my next book. I am hoping to finish up the text and illustrations by New Years. The quilting is almost done. In between I have to do some piecing. It's my therapy. And then I squeeze in some blogging; especially on Mondays.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Getting Close

       I hope all of you had a good week like me. Just a little quilting though.All the stars are done for the border and I got them together. I should have time tomorrow to finish that quilt top. I sure hope I am going to like this when it is done. Man, these big quilts are lots of work.
      Tuesday was quilting at church. We've been staying an extra hour or two so we are getting a little more done. 5 of us had machines working on our comfort quilts. The others usually work on choosing backs, or baste. I worked on one of the kits I put together months ago. I don't bring kits home to work on though. If I don't finish it there, someone else will take it to finish it.
       Yesterday I went with a friend to check out the new shop, Buttons and Bolts, in Salem. She has a nice but small selection with room to grow. I easily found a few pieces I had to have. I hope she has luck with the shop. There are few shops in that corner of the state.
      This morning it was off to the new JoAnn's for batting with Lucrecia. They were having their grand opening sale. I got 2 rolls of 60" wide batting for our comfort quilts. It sure is nice soft stuff. I have a house full of  batting already so I didn't need any for myself, but I talked Lucrecia into buying 2 rolls. It was kinda hard getting 100 yards of the stuff  in the car. Downtown Lake Geneva was a madhouse so a parking spot for lunch  wasn't so easy till we reached the Lake Geneva Pie Company. Yum! I'll be back there soon. Off to quilt now. Have a good one.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Ladies in Waiting block

 I decided on using the same star block in the corners of the quilt, but colored differently than in the body of the quilt. Look at your options. My quilt used the first coloring. The corner blocks will use the 4th coloring.

 Here is the cutting for one 12" finished block.

Cut for star center,  1 square 4 1/2"
for inner star points, cut  
4 squares 2 7/8" cut once diagonally.
for inner star background, cut
4 squares 2 1/2" and
1 square 5 1/4" cut twice diagonally.

Four outer round, cut
4 squares 2 1/2" and
4 rectangles, 2 1/2" x 8 1/2"
for outer star points, cut
8 squares 2 1/2" x 2 1/2" for folded corners on the ends of the rectangles.

Make center star then add the rectangle star point units and corner squares, joining the pieces in rows.

I finished the stars for the border - except the corners. I oly needed 32 blocks, not 36. I guess it pays to work with an accurate diagram.And I am sure the extra 4 had nothing to do with the corner blocks. cause at one time I considered using other sizes of stars and hadn't made a decision.  I still have 3 more to make like the one above, then I can add the borders. Busy week with a few appointments, quilting at church and a date to check out the new shop in Salem. Now off to Judy's.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Pluggin' Away

There are 9 more stars to finish before I can assemble the border. It gets exciting when the end is in sight. As I ponder loading this on the quilt frame, I dream of a bigger machine. Especially since it's felt crowded more and more often lately. There is time for investigating that later.

The last 9 blocks are stacked and ready to feed into the machine the same way I explained for putting the quilt top together. But here I will sew unit 1 (a square) to 2, then 4 to 5 then 7 to 8. and repeat until those 6 piles are gone. Then I will add unit 3 (a square) to row 1 (units 1 +2), then unit 6 to row 2 and unit (square) 9 to row 3 and repeat till there gone. I know. Clear as mud. 

I still have 4 corner blocks to make too. Not sure how I want to handle that. We will know soon. And I didn't forget that I offered the pattern for the block  I am using in "Ladies in Waiting" So I will share that next. Till then.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Sewing Block to Block

Sorting through my closet is still high on my list, but I am finding plenty to work on without having to go in there. With quilters coming here for lessons, I thought it would be a good idea to clean up the cutting table. The pieces for my Ladies in Waiting quilt have been sitting in a box on the table for months. I wanted to work on it only at retreats, but I don't have plans to go to any so thought I would finish it up. These pictures show how I join the blocks. Any other way slows me down.

When sashing is used, I start with it sewn to two edges of each block. Pressing is always toward the sashing - both seams - the block and the cornerstone. Then I arrange them on the wall.

Next I stack them off the wall in columns, from the top down leaving each column in order. Use a pin in the top edge of the top pile. Then from left to right I stack them in one pile. The upper left block ends up on top.

This next picture shows how I start to sew them together, they are only on the wall for you to see what is happening.  I take the first column (stack)  and sew them to the second column (stack) with chain piecing. 

Then I start at the top again and add column (stack) three. Now the rows forming are more obvious. At the end of column three, I break thread and start again at the top chain piecing the next column in place.

When all the blocks are sewn in place, it is time to sew the rows together. I always leave them joined with the twisted threads between the rows. But sometimes I stop and press before joining the rows. I find doing it this way the blocks stay in order and it is more efficient than just making one row at a time because there are fewer starts and stops cause I am chain piecing. BTW This is the same way blocks I sew blocks together.

 I still have to add the last outer row of sashing to the right side and bottom. This one gets a pieced border of stars so I am still far from calling it done.

 Last Wednesday I visited the Lake County Quilters guild and met fellow blogger Nan of . It was so nice to meet her after visiting her blog all the time. And fun to see her latest creations in person.  I first found her blog after linking up to Judy's. And it's that time again to check out the other Design Walls that other quilters have linked there. Good day for blogging. It's raining here.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Hidden Stars Finished

My Hidden Stars top is done. How many stars can you count?  Yeah, I didn't count either. Some of the pieces are out of order from my original plan, but you wouldn't know which. I kinda want a bit of randomness about it. I'm happy with it, so will stack it on the pile of keepers. I can't believe I'm going with No borders on this one too. I've been seeing alot of that lately.

Tonight I am quilting with Patti and Joy. Well, I am cutting anyway. I spent a few hours planning a new project. Seems no one else has trouble starting another project. But after quilting 30 years, I sometimes feel that I have already done all the quilts I am interested in. But that just isn't true. I just have to dig a little to figure out what I want to work on. I guess I need to keep a file of pictures to remind me. A list just doesn't cut it for this.

Time to check out everyone's Design Wall linked up to Judy's.   Enjoy!