Friday, December 29, 2017

Latest Sampler

Well It's the end of the year and I have accomplished the goals that I set a few weeks ago. Finishing this Sampler top was on the list.
Making a sampler quilt can be a great way to try new techniques, experiment with color combinations or relieve the boredom that comes with repeating identical blocks and I spose lots of other reasons. I made this for the pure joy of using some fabrics I loved. And I love them more each time I handle the quilt. This is probably the last sampler I'll make for a while. They really are more time consuming than lots of other styles. And I'm in a mood to cut more fabric.

Most of the blocks in this sampler were from Barbara Brackmans book Civil War Sampler. I really like the Civil War fabrics but had grown a little tired of using them so chose these fun purples, pinks and oranges. The other  35 blocks in the book can wait for when I'm in the mood to make another sampler. Maybe they will be with Civil War prints.
When you see a quilt pattern do you dismiss it quickly because the fabrics used weren't in your favorite color or style? Or do you consider the design in something other than it is shown,  And then decide if you would like it? I hope you take the time to study the quilt and see what you might do different to make it something you like. I like the pinwheel in the lower left of the next picture. May have to do a quilt with it. Hmmm. Have you made a whole quilt from a favorite block you found in a sampler?

Quilting this baby quilt was on the list, too. I sure like quilting these little ones. They go so fast. I still have to bind it but that only takes a few hours. I'll probably use the muslin.    
 As a teacher I have to think ahead. Might seem early but the Studio 3 crowd will be glad to start their valentine soon. A few I've shared it with already are interested in making theirs bed size.

 There's another top, a big one, that I finished but I left it at Studio 3 and didn't get a picture yet.

My plans next were to quilt a big one for my bed. Silly me.  I never got fabric for the back of that quilt. So I dug into my collection of tops and found another one or two small ones that I can quilt till I go shopping for that back. I do want to get that big one quilted as I want a quilt with a cotton batting for my bed before next summer. I'll set that for my goal for January along with cutting out a quilt or two and beginning to piece the Twilight Hopskotch quilt by Kim Diehl. I'll keep you posted on my progress.

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Still Learning

I've been working towards my goal for the end of the year. I've got 2 quilts bound, one ready for binding and the quilting on the last one started. 
 Here they are the finished two.

The more I quilt the more fun it gets.

 When I learned to machine quilt I used clear nylon thread on the top and cotton in the bobbin. It was great because I stitched in the ditch alot back then and if I jumped the curb you couldn't see it. As my skills increased I switched to cotton thread. I never liked it though cause I thought it was too thick and sat on top of the quilt. I should have experimented with thinner threads. When I got my longarm I felt like I had to start all over. I had to practice alot till I was comfortable with how my quilting looked. Now that I am comfortable with it I think I am ready to use some contrasting thread once in awhile so that the stitching shows up. I am loving some of the quilting designs that I use but they hardly show up. Also, I must keep in mind that if I don't use a busy print on the back of the quilt that I must hand tie the ends of the threads. My starts and stops are still a little messy. But really, I should try a little harder or I'll never get better.

Since I'm doing so well I'll add to the goal to complete 2 more tops. The blocks have been done for months and I'd like to count them as a finish for this year. Stay tuned.

Monday, December 11, 2017

1980's UFO

I've had a great time quilting this week. I'll share once I get the bindings done. And I got this 1980's star one step closer to completion.

I also spent some time straightening a cabinet and closet. I realized I didn't need to tear it all apart so it was doable in 1 day. When Mark said he was going to his nephews for the day I didn't waste any time and went right to work. I had been afraid that I would be stirring up trouble and coming up with all kinds of plans for new quilts.

That didn't happen. Now I have separated the tops for donation from the ones I want to hang on to and even finish.  I packed away old Thimble berries fabric. Might need what's left for a binding someday, otherwise I'm done with it. I uncovered a few boxes I wish I hadn't. Some I closed up again happy to know a quilt is waiting to be made.

The star shown above was found in a hard to reach drawer. I started it with a friend as a thank you for someone else. It. We abandoned it cause it wouldn't lie flat. This is easily 25 years ago - when we had less experience.  I was able to rework the final section seams without taking it  all apart.

The only matching fabric around to be found was enough for the border. I'll quilt it up and use another brown for a binding and donate it to a good cause.

I've got 3 more quilts I prepped to finish, 2 small and a big one for my bed.  My goal is to finish the 2 smaller ones by New Years eve.  There are plenty of other things to get done before that so I'll be glad to do that much.

Check out these linky parties.
Oh Scrap at  quiltingismorefunthanhousework
Design Wall Monday  at Smallquiltsanddollquilts
Monday Making at  Love laugh quilt

Sunday, December 3, 2017

On a Roll

Even though we've had a gloriously warm week and I've been working in the woods lots, I've still gotten some quilting done. This tabletopper was just waiting for a binding. Now it's waiting for a centerpiece. So there's one item to check off the list.

This morning I straightened up the quilt room.  Rather I started. I'm sorting tops from quilts. Then I'll sort the tops into those I want finished and those that can wait. Then maybe I can get a better idea how I want to prioritize them. Maybe if I can set some goals I can make a list and get all excited to check them off. I've made a list of those I want to piece and it's almost a PHD list too that I could write out. I suppose it would be a good idea to do that. And then post them for everyone to see. I'm real good at cracking the whip in class. I guess I could apply a little pressure to myself as well.

I should be able to finish the quilting on another one tonight. I have to turn the quilt on the frame to do the border. It will take longer to turn it than to quilt it.  It's too late to get that one on the list to check off but it's already on a list of those quilted this year. The list isn't so long this year since I had all that trouble earlier with my arm.   I'm sure glad I don't feel any guilt for having so much fabric I will likely never "use up". Likewise I feel no guilt for having made so many tops that I won't get quilted. It's all good. It's all fun.