Thursday, August 30, 2007

Label time

The winner of this quilt at the auction in April called today to see about having a label put on it for her first grandchild born yesterday. She dropped by with the quilt this evening and I got started on the label. I need to have the label done and on the quilt by next Wednesday evening so she can take it down to San Francisco next Thursday when they head down to see the baby. I am probably half done with the embroidery and then I just need to get it on there.

I am pretty much ready for the trip to see my grandbaby tomorrow. Just need to start loading the van and make sure I get all the stuff in there. It is nice that I won't have to leave quilting behind this trip since I will be doing some teaching.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Found an extra hour

Managed to find a little extra time last night and got another baby quilt top quilted and the binding ready for hand sewing. Just one more to quilt but probably not this week. I need to get some things ready for our weekend away. I will be doing a mini quilting class for my daughter and her neighbor so I want to get some things ready like they do for the TV quilt shows. Chelsea has the piecing part figured out but now I need to show her how to machine quilt and put binding on. I think I have a small quilt I can do some demonstrating on. I will probably bring some of my scrappy squares for teaching piecing tops. Hopefully we will have some pictures to post either over the weekend or when I get home.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Not enough hours in the day

Back working with Larry today after a week off. That really cuts into my sewing time especially if I have other things I need/want to get done. As you can see I got a better picture of the group quilt yesterday on Sally's design wall. She was down in Oregon with her husband for a powered parachute fly-in and found a quilt shop that was having a sale. She got some 108" wide fabric for the back for only about $3/yard and didn't have to pay tax! I am just glad that I am done with my part of that project.

This evening I got the second baby quilt totally finished so I just have three more to go.

We are heading to our daughter's house for Labor Day and I guess I will be doing a little quilting instruction for her and her neighbor who is interested in learning. Before I go I need to go through some stuff so I can take Chelsea some fabric and projects to work on. She sent me an email the other day with the subject - Look what you've done to me... - as if it was a bad thing to like to quilt!

Friday, August 24, 2007

Sneak Peek

I have been working on my swap quilt for the Four Seasons Quilt Swap. I just haven't posted anything as a teaser. I am again making two just because I figure it is going to turn out too cool and I won't want to send it to my partner. I have both of the tops done and I am nearly done with the hand quilting on the first one. Once the quilting is done I have some thoughts about yo-yos and maybe buttons for embellishment. We shall see how that turns out.

Today I got two more baby quilts machine quilted and the bindings are ready for the hand sewing. I have two more baby quilts that need quilting and I think I will try to get them both done soon. One is the other like the one here and the other is like this one. When those are done I can take a total of 4 more off my UFO/WIP list!

My daughter Chelsea is really starting to come down with the quilting bug since she finished her first top. She made a couple of doll quilts tops in the last few days and called for quilting advice yesterday. The next call should be about binding.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

I did it!

I got the top done today! It turned out beautifully. These aren't great pictures but it is too big for the top of my king size bed and it is now almost dark outside so I couldn't hang it for a picture tonight so that was the best I could do on a chair. I will post a better picture when we can hang it next door on Sally's design wall. As I sewed together each block I marveled that 440 blocks made by four people from their stashes (each only having one strip and one square of any one fabric) had so few duplicates. I think there was only one fabric duplicated in the blocks and maybe one in the strips!
There were also two other colorways of the fabric that was duplicated in the squares. The only other fabric that had several colorways was Moda Marbles!


My iron has stopped working! And, I am in the middle of putting together those 440 blocks. It is a Rowenta that I bought only about a year ago I think. So I am struggling along with my old Rowenta but it leaks in the handle area which is a pain! I am beginning to think that Rowentas aren't as good as they used to be.

I was going to take the iron apart but I don't have the right tools here at home so Mr. Appliance Repairman will have to look at it when he gets home with the right tools. If he can't fix it I will have to look into getting a replacement and I don't know what to buy. Should I buy another Rowenta? What about the cordless Maytag? Or should I go for the much cheaper Black & Decker?


One project finished and another added

I finished the quilting on that baby quilt and even got the binding finished so I can take that off my UFO/WIP list and add it to the finished list.

Last night at Sally's we put all 440 squares up on her design wall (well, 2 rows had to be on the floor because even her huge design wall couldn't hold it all). We just had to rearrange a few to spread the colors out a bit. I ended up taking them home to put together. Sally and Nadine will be in charge of batting and quilting on their HQ16 and Linnea will do the binding. Miss Lucy woke me up at 6:30 this morning so I got an early start on that project. I hope to have the top together today.

Monday, August 20, 2007

So here is Chelsea's first quilt all finished. It turned out really nicely I think. The backing fabric was one that Chelsea and I both liked quite well at Fabric Depot when we were there in February. We kind of talked about it being the inspiration fabric for her next baby's quilt. I guess we will have to move on to option two - chickens. Though she is also rather fond of the baby quilts I am working to finish now.

Chelsea is starting to catch the quilting bug but she thinks her next project will be much smaller - a doll quilt possibly. Her new neighbor is interested in learning about quilting also so I may be doing a tutorial next time I am there for a visit.

Today I had a bonus day off. Instead of doing what I really wanted to do, I worked at cleaning off the top of my desk. You know, it is made of solid oak - who knew! I did get some 'unquilting' done. Over the weekend I started quilting one of the baby quilts and thought it was going very well, until I turned it over and saw the huge the middle! Luckily I was only about half done with the whole thing so it wasn't too frustrating. Now I need to repin and then redo the quilting. Maybe that will get done this week yet. I would like to add some more to the finished column!

Saturday, August 18, 2007

The quilting is done

I decided today to get the quilting done on my daughter's first quilt. I posted a picture a couple of weeks ago of her showing off the top and today I am sharing a bit of quilting detail. I have the binding on and I can post a final picture in the next day or so. Then I will have one more project off my list. I think I will work on the four baby quilts next since I have the sewing table cleaned off and ready to go.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

My squares all done

I got them all done. It really wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. Many of my friends and family will be proud of me to find out that I didn't save the leftovers from trimming the squares to make a little quilt. I was tempted but it was going to be way more work that it would be worth. I might yet trim them to half square triangles... no, I need to just let them go. They will be very nice in crazy quilt squares.

My next project is the fall quilt for the Four Seasons Quilt Swap. I need to pull out all my fall fabrics and see what they say to me!

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Scraps, scraps, scraps

I have been a bit remiss about posting recently. I got started on trimming up scraps to use for the group quilt last week and just couldn't stop. The strips were the easiest since most of my scraps are smaller than 4 or 5 inches. This evening I finished cutting the squares and then cut those into triangles and matched them up with the strips. Next I will press them flat and do a quick press to mark the centers to make it easier to put them together. Who knows, I might even get some of them sewn tonight.

In the process of going through the scraps I went into the attic and found 3 big bins and two boxes of scraps to be used. Most of it is for Lutheran World Relief quilt tops but there is a lot to use for crazy quilt blocks. I really would rather not put the bins and boxes back in the attic and I definitely don't want them clogging up the sewing room so I guess I will be getting some LWR tops finished and then work on crazy quilt blocks.

I got the name of my Four Seasons Quilt Swap recipient this week so it is time to get to work on an autumn/fall type quilt. Not sure yet what it will be but I have some thoughts. That needs to be my next project since it has an actual deadline!

Friday, August 10, 2007

Trimming scraps

I probably should be working on machine quilting some projects but I have been distracted again...

On most Tuesday evenings I traipse over to my neighbor's craft room for a few hours of chatting and crafts. We all quilt and some throw in scrapbooking, stamping, cardmaking and other crafts. About 3 weeks ago we all decided that we would work together to make a quilt and then donate it to a charity yet to be determined. We each were tasked with cutting 110 different 6" squares and 110 different 1 1/2" X 8 1/2" strips to be made into blocks like these...

The other three quilters involved in this project expected me to go home and get mine done in the next few days. Well, I have procrastinated and this week Sally had all her pieces cut and by the end of the evening she had 25 squares sewn and trimmed. Yesterday she emailed the above picture of her 110 finished squares. Nadine also had all her pieces cut and Linnea has most of hers cut and had 12 sewn on Tuesday. So tonight I started going through my scraps to start my cutting. I am also sorting my scraps. I am cutting smaller pieces into 2, 2 1/2, 3, 3 1/2, 4 and 4 1/2 inch squares, leaving longer strips to be used for those things you don't need squares for, sorting out triangles and putting the smaller stuff into the basket for crazy quilt blocks.

I have made it through a very small portion of my scraps so far but I have 32 strips cut so far and about 8 squares. I also have lots of small squares ready for scrap quilts. It is time to tame the scrap pile!

Thursday, August 9, 2007

All 8 done

I am pleased to say that I did get the 8 covers finished this evening. That means that I can move on to more fun stuff. Tomorrow will be a day of running around so the most I will probably get done is pin basting one quilt if I am lucky.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

One done, seven to go

This evening I got Flying Leftovers quilted and the binding is on and ready to be hand sewn while I watch TV this evening. I decided that I would not let myself do anymore quilt sewing until I got at least a prototype of a handbell table pad cover. You see, I play in our church's handbell choir and there are 3" foam pads on the tables so the bells don't clang when you set them down (also, so they don't get dented I suppose). We have had our bells for about 14 years and the pads are looking a little less than lovely. I made these denim covers for the tables for performances (please forgive the bad picture - it is about 4 years old and from our old camera)......but, as you can see, the ugly foam pads peek out at the corners so I decided that I would use some of my black Kona to make some nice fitted covers for the pads.

And I did it! I have one done and it didn't really take all that long. I hope I can get the other 7 covers done tomorrow so I can get this one pad out of my sewing room where it has been sitting as a reminder to get the job done for about 2 months! It may not be a quilt but it will be so nice to have those pads covered!

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Flying Leftovers?

Not sure what to name this one. This made from the leftovers of the two baby quilts I made last week. Chelsea and I decided this was a pleasing layout. Layden helped me sew it yesterday. He does love anything that makes noise. I will probably get it quilted and finished off this week.

Besides that little quilt, I have 4 baby quilts and Chelsea's quilt to machine quilt. I guess that will be my focus for a few days. After those are done I need to make eight covers for some foam pads out of black kona. That should be interesting!

Tonight is craft night at my neighbor's home. I need to decide what to bring over to work on. Probably some hand quilting on the Row By Row.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Busy sewing weekend

Considering we have Mr. Helpful around, Chelsea and I got quite a bit of sewing done this weekend. She got her first quilt top finished - only took 6 years or so. She plans to take leave it here to be quilted and bound.

I used some of the leftovers from the baby quilts I made earlier this week to make a little doll quilt that I gave to Layden. He seemed to like having a quilt his size! I also laid out the rest of my leftovers to make another doll quilt but I will sew it up later this week.

Then I made a skirt for Chelsea out of the batik we bought on Friday. It turned out quite nicely.

After that I made another baby carrier - this one is for Chelsea's neighbor. We are thinking about making more and selling them so I checked to see how long it took to make one. About 2 yards of fabric and 2 hours, it turns out, barring mistakes. This one was the first made with a sleeping hood. It turned out well so I added a hood to each of the three other carriers I made recently and to Chelsea's old one since I had extra fabric.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Another Quilt Swap

I just joined a new Quilt Swap. This one is called Four Seasons Quilt Swap I. I have added a link to the blog. If you are interested in joining the swap, sign-ups are still open. I had a lot of fun with the last one and look forward to being a part of this one which will include 4 separate swaps - one for each season starting with fall.

Oh! What's That?

Haven't had a chance to do much posting the last few days because we have had company since Wednesday evening. Oh, I know, he looks innocent enough in this shot but if you zoom out and observe the true state of my sewing room you will see that little Layden has inherited his mother's ability to enter a room and explode! And, since my sewing room is also the guest room, sewing and quilting are not easily accomplished when we have guests. Now I will admit that the sewing room wasn't totally tidy when they arrived, but you could still function in it fairly easily.

The bonus is that my little grandson likes to spend time in Grammy's sewing room and has discovered the little strips of fabric in the trash and they are now spread all over the room also. I know it doesn't seem like a bonus but I remember playing with my mother's scraps when I was little and I watched my kids do the same in her sewing room. I hope that Layden and all my future grandchildren will have fond memories of time spent with Grammy in her sewing room just like their parents have.

Yesterday, Layden took his first road trip to Fabric Depot with his mom and I. We also had my nieces, Brita and Katie, along. Brita is here here from Idaho to 'Ride the Courage' with her sister. For her 14th birthday in March I promised her a trip to Fabric Depot. This involves lunch and shopping. Because it was the 40% off weekend at Fabric Depot it also includes 3 yards of fabric. She managed to get nine different fabrics in her 3 yards and Katie got 8 (her birthday is the end of this month). I replenished my thread stock and got another bolt of black 60" Kona. I also found flannel for the back of the baby quilts, a nice batik for a skirt for Chelsea, fabric for a baby carrier for Chelsea's neighbor and some Christmas fabric to make 'another cheesy Christmas quilt'.

Today we are hoping to get the skirt and baby carrier made and maybe Chelsea will get her little quilt finished (she started cutting squares about 6 years ago). In the midst of that will be bread baking and playing with the baby!