Sunday, July 15, 2018

Zig Zagging in the Sewing Room

I'd call it flitting from project to project, but I'm not that lithe or speedy!  Ignoring the big pile of binding was easy, as the weather was still pretty toasty.  I played with more squirrel projects last weekend when it was too hot to sew under the hot lights or to iron.
 I had a container of precut 2.5" squares, mostly green prints but also some solids, and laid them out with the "garlic knot" shape as I used in grandson Hunter's quilt. 
The final layout included more white and some knots turned the other way.  I can't say when these squares will get sewn together but they were fun to play with.  It's almost looking mid-century inspired, to me.  

The upcoming County Fair is upmost on my mind.  As usual, I'll be working up to the last minute to get my projects done.  #1 task was to get my Metro Twist quilt ready for quilting.  I made a quick trip to the fabric store last weekend for thread and spray baste, and got the sandwich made on Thursday.  It seems I got more spray baste on my fingernails than anywhere else, but the sandwich did get made before work.  Saturday morning I got my machine all set up for quilting and started in. 
Metro Twist is a pattern using the QCR ruler from Sew Kind of Wonderful.  The neon orange was from a guild challenge a couple of years ago.  I stitched in orange abutting the print pieces, then switched to gray to stitch 1/4" inside the curved pieces.  I decided to quilt straight lines in the background and marked them with my Hera marker and a ruler.

I used some Steady Betty quilting bands to help move the quilt around as I stitched. 

I plan to round all the corners with the QCR ruler and bind with a bias cut purple binding.  The entries are due next Sunday so I've got a lot of work yet to to.  This quilt finishes at about 45x48",  so about a baby or wall size.  I have a bunch of threads to bury, binding to cut, make and apply,hanging sleeve and label to add.  

We had a family barbecue Sunday and I enlisted daughter Erica to help me with border choices for the Yarn Over mini charm pack runner.  I want to enter it as well in the Fair.  
She liked the brown print with the green linen.  I hope I have enough of the linen to make a matching binding.  Another not-yet-finished piece is Sue goes to the Orient.  I have dragged my feet for months adding some embroidered detail to the background, but finally got some lanterns traced to quickly stitch up. 

I thought Sue looked like she was in a doorway, so needed something behind her.  I'll backstitch the lanterns in black floss, then make a mini quilt. If I can manage it, I'll finish the binding on three remaining placemats---I've got the binding stitched to the fronts and pinned to ditch stitch.  Oh, and if there is any time left, I want to make a pillow out of the Broken Dishes blocks I sewed up some weeks ago. Wish me luck!

Blogger is not sending me comments through email despite going through several steps to regain this feature, so I will try leaving the first comment again on this post.

Friday, July 6, 2018

Binding and Piecing

It is bloody HOT here in SoCal, meaning not much is happening in the sewing room. Those with air-conditioning may be getting something done today but not me! Earlier this week I continued the binding blitz with one of the Tea Time Placemats (Pineapple Fabrics Alice pattern).

 Well the pictures flipped, this is the back...
...and this is the front--but they are reversible after all.  I was happy with the navy dot but then got bored with binding and decided to let another project in.  Squirrel!

Years ago I won a mini charm pack or two from Kate Spain, one or her fabric line became a pillow a couple of years ago.  The other was a Fig Tree line called Buttercup, and a couple of weeks ago I pulled an Anka's Treasure pattern and the charms I wanted to use.  Making mini table toppers is a fun escape from the big projects!
 I laid out all my mini charms first before assembling into groupings per the pattern. 

This pattern is called Yarn Over, from the Mini Charmers I booklet.  Aren't these fabrics yummy?
Clever construction with good pressing directions, which I always appreciate. 

There are two rows of sashing to add.  I had this piece of Fig and Plum set aside with the mini charm pack, but looking at this photo, am wondering how the purple in the print is going to look  with the Buttercup fabrics.  It is a pretty narrow sashing at 2" finished.  I may end up using it on the back.  Anyway, it was fun to play with small pieces and finish the center in a few short sewing sessions.  

We're off to babysit the grandsons tonight--our daughter and son in law don't have air-conditioning, but they do have a pool!

Monday, July 2, 2018

Design Wall Monday--Another Stitchy Weekend

Design Wall Monday is here.  My favorite weekend activity was again in play, there was progress on several projects--and a little cleaning up in the sewing room. 

Rick Rack Nines received a few hours of attention.  I did chose to machine stitch down the binding after all, in the interest in finishing this UFO that has been on my list for years.  These 9 patch blocks were swapped many years ago, and I finished the quilt top in 2012, the quilting was done a year ago.  Yikes. 
For those who were in favor of the slow stitching binding method, never fear, wherever you  see a binding clip is a place I missed the edge and have to hand stitch it. Sigh. I told my husband that I'll have this finished for our bed just in time for the hottest day of the summer, as it seems to be traditional for me!  It is supposed to be 95 here on the weekend.  I mentioned before that we don't have central air conditioning, yes?  Fortunately the R2D2 room unit keeps the bedroom cool at night. 

The Tea Time Placemats got trimmed and I cut and sewed the binding, so they are up next in the binding queue.  
I'm happy with the blue dot and look forward to using these placemats after the 4th of July decor comes down. 

While looking for something else, I came across another UFO box that needed more pieces cut in order to progress.  Since the cutting table was half cleared off (cough), I prepped the fabric for setting squares and triangles for a Christmas quilt. 
Some Charm squares and stash fabrics became large 4 patches last year.  I purchased this setting fabric at Superbuzzy during the holiday season.  It is a Lori Holt fabric called Cozy Christmas.  I was so happy to find a light fabric with all the colors to match my 4 patches.  The yardage was a bit narrow, so I just squeaked by in cutting the needed pieces for my layout of Barefoot In The Park.
I sure miss the Loft Creations blog and my friend Stephanie who authored it.  Her design is double sided, my plan is to make just the front but I want it a bit larger so added another row of the 4 patches.  Leftover charm squares will have circles cut and then applied to the setting squares as on the pattern picture. 

Bright, scrappy, and cheerful.  I selected an aqua background Christmas print for the border.  I'll look forward to finishing this one.  

See more design walls on Small Quilts and Doll Quilts.

Monday, June 25, 2018

Design Wall Monday--Binding Extravaganza

Design Wall Monday is here again.-- on Small Quilts and Doll Quilts.  On my to-do list has been large quilt binding.  I have had a king sized quilt awaiting binding for many months, with an almost-enough pile of binding awaiting final measuring before applying to the quilt.  I don't know why I let these jobs linger for so long! 
Looking back in my files, I got it back from the quilter almost a year ago.  Shameful!  So yesterday the binding--all 400 inches--got stitched on. This is a Bonnie Hunter pattern, I think it's called Rick Rack Nines.

Now that the binding is on, I'm trying to decide if I am crazy enough to hand stitch it to the back, or if machine binding will be fine--I'm leaning towards machine!  It's a quilt for our bed.  

More miles of binding were cut and sewn for two donation quilts.  We are still giving quilts to victims of the Thomas Fire and Montecito mudslide disasters.  
Isn't this one pretty?  These are Perkiomen Valley blocks, which can be laid out so many ways.  I only added the green binding.  We have been stitching bindings to the back and bringing to the front to machine finish. The next Perkiomen Valley quilt I worked on looked so familiar, but it wasn't until I took a final picture that I realized why. 
It is so amazing that this one came back to me for binding, as I originally laid out all the blocks months ago at a sew-in, from a pile of  "mostly go together" disparate blocks.  You can see that the lights and darks are a bit muddy in some places but there is still enough contrast in most.  It needs a label and then is ready for our next pop-up giveaway next month.

I also ventured out over the weekend to find binding choices for the Tea Time placemats I was working on--they are all quilted now.  I had a lovely time breathing in quilt shop fabric fumes and being in the company of other makers.  A number of fabrics jumped in my basket but here are the top two binding choices:
The mini-dot is actually navy that reads purple.  The gray crackle finish looks good too.  Maybe I'll make two of each color binding since I love both, lol. The four placemats will take far less time to bind than all those huge quilts!

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Squirrel #2 of the Week, and Blogger Email Notifications

Squirrel #2 of the week is a project that was already started--Bonus points for that squirrel!  I think I bought this kit at Road to CA last year.  The company is Pineapple Fabrics and they had kits made up of different projects in the yummiest fabric, with original patterns and lots of color combinations.  I must have spent 20 minutes circling the display before I finally selected one for placemats.  Last month I got all the pieces cut, but made a decision to change the final construction after I had assembled the center fronts and the back pieces.  I made mine scrappier, no surprise there! 

While I liked the hourglass center and the fabric variety, I changed the matching side borders (as shown in the pattern photo) and decided to make mine quilt-as-you-go rather than stitch and turn.  I like a binding on my placemats. Needing some mindless stitching last night, I set to work on the sandwiching and quilting. 
Stripes, polka dots, birdies, and raindrops--aren't these fabrics cute!  After sandwiching the centers to the backs, I stitched on the side pieces and pressed them in place. I played around with some specialty stitches, selecting the maximum size stitch in the program, and with the walking foot got to quilting.  I made the quilting lines about 3/4" inch apart, but didn't mark the top.  

 ...Scrappier Front making me happy!

I was able to fussy cut the row of houses on the fabric.  I managed to get two placemats quilted before running out of steam last night.  A trip to the fabric store will be necessary for some binding fabric options, but I'm not mad :)

Blogger has announced a change to hopefully fix the comments not coming to email.  However, I don't think this is working perfectly, judging from posts I am seeing on Instagram. I'll try leaving myself a comment on this post to check, but will not hold my breath!  That "noreply" email address must have millions of emails in it by now.