Wednesday, May 31, 2023

A Finish and Lost Things

Our next grandson's quilt is ready to go--I got all the quilting done by walking foot, and chose a solid blue from stash for the binding. 

I had a few binding clips loose in my sewing desk, but needed more.  The plastic box of red binding clips was not in its usual desk drawer.  A 20 minute "I just saw them" search then ensued--I looked through every drawer and bin at the messy sewing desk, and then all over the messy cutting table. 

Believe it or not, the binding clips were mere inches from the sewing machine in the photo above...

...under a pile of leader-ender blocks! Mystery solved, I set to hand stitching the binding down. 

The quilt is fairly small, though it seemed to take awhile stitching the binding by hand. 

The binding fabric shade was very close to the solid strip on the backing, a hair of difference.  I love the orange print, there is not much left to put in the scrap box.  As our son and daughter-in-law have not quite settled on his name, I'll make the quilt label after baby arrives. 

In other quilt news, my niece Emma sent a pic of herself wrapped in the Bookshelf quilt.  She was so happy to have it at last :)

There are a lot of tops that need quilting and I'll be constructing backings for them.  Also I poked around the project boxes in the Hoosier cabinet and oh, my, there are a lot of them!  Another "Empty the Hoosier Cabinet" self-challenge should occupy June, for the times when I am not holding our new grandson!

Sunday, May 28, 2023

Slow Sunday Stitching--Strawberry

 Slow Sunday Stitching-- Joining up with Kathy's Quilts today with the project of the moment. 

Lori Holt Stitch Cards design.  She stitched her sample on a darker material than what I had on hand, this white Aida pre-stretched canvas. I added a few stitches with a single strand of green to make the strawberry flower stand out more.  Once I finished the teal blue border, I decided to add other motifs to the corners, from another card in the pack. 

The tiny strawberries are cute and fast to stitch.  I may also choose to add the flower and stem, from that same card, along the sides of the border.  Soon I'll need another project to stitch. 

We had a visit from our youngest grandson and our son this morning; Daddy was giving his very pregnant wife a break and they rode over on their bikes. 

Dane enjoyed a cinnamon roll, got his favorite toys out of the toybox, and talked up a storm, as usual. 

Sunday, May 21, 2023

Staycation Sewing Progress and Plans

Staycation continues! I have been able to spend a lot of time in the sewing room.  First priority was the next grandson's quilt.  I went with a simple design and used stash fabrics.  The sashing was cut from the bolt of Kona Bone I bought from JoAnn's some months ago. It is great to have on hand. 

The bottom looks wonky in this pic but really isn't in person. 

Final white border all around.  The pattern I found online used 1" sashing, which I thought was too narrow, so I cut mine at 1.5"--that also made the quilt longer and wider.  The prints were cut 8x16 and 8x8 square, the long vertical strip was also 8", so it is not a big quilt. My Husqvarna sewing machine needed a service, however, so my older model Husqvarna is standing in; it does not have the main features I love on the newer model, the automatic presser foot lifter and the thread cutter. I took the 40 minute drive to the repair shop, and was sorry to see the Quilty Pleasures shop in the same center  that I expected to also visit had closed. Instead, I wandered around a vintage resale shop that had lots of fun old stuff to admire. I came home with a Fiestaware platter to add to my dinnerware, in a dark rusty color I didn't have. 

A rare opportunity to make a baby girl quilt for a grand-niece had me pulling sweet prints and patterns from my precut scraps and fat quarter drawers. 

The pattern I am using is "Picnic", from Kim Brackett's book, Scrap Basktet Sensations; it's the cover quilt.  Most of the quilts use 2.5" strips and squares.  I used my GO cutter to cut the neutral strips and squares for a 6x6 block quilt; the blocks are 6" square finished. I'm assembly-line stitching them as quickly as possible, as baby is due in the next few weeks. 

I made one for myself about 10 years ago. See it Here.  

The trimmings I am sewing up into cute mini hourglass blocks. 

What a sweet doll quilt these would make--there are lots more made than these few that were on the ironing board:)

Wednesday, May 17, 2023

Staycation Sewing--A Finish and A New Start

I'm currently enjoying the second day of a staycation--my doctor boss is out of the office on a real vacation, and I took the opportunity to use saved PTO of my own.  

The long-term project of the bookshelf quilt has reached an end at last!  Yesterday I finally quit dragging my feet on stippling the black background of the bookshelves--and, as one usually finds when avoiding a task, it didn't take very long at all to do!  The quilt has had a bath and lacks only a label to be gifted to my niece, Emma. 

I am happy with the solid black binding and ended up not putting any stitching in the outer quilt borders--I wanted to keep the illusion of a wallpapered backdrop.

Stippling the black background was definitely better than leaving it unquilted--it lets the books and objects stand out more. Finished size is about 5 feet each direction, a nice lap quilt or wall quilt. Most of the ideas for this bookshelf came from the Fabric at Work guidelines I found online.  Pinterest and Instagram also had lots of inspiration input. 

Next task on this staycation is to get a couple of quilts sent out for quilting--and my sewing machine in for a maintenance service!

I've also started a new cross-stitch project. I bought some Stitch Cards at Superbuzzy not long ago; these are Lori Holt designs and are so sweet. 

I had one of these prestretched Aida blanks, so was able to get right to stitching. 

The gingham strawberry is all done now.  I did not have the teal floss color for the border--nor anything that would be close enough, so will just carry on with the leaves, flower and stem until I pick that up. I want to stitch all of these designs!

The new task is to get our next grandson's quilt made--he will be here in a few weeks.  I also have a great-niece due very soon and the rare opportunity to make a girl baby quilt is a nice change!

Monday, May 8, 2023

Bookshelf Quilt Nearly There

 Design Wall Monday--See more design walls on Judy's Small Quilts and Doll Quilts blog. 

The long journey of the Bookshelf Quilt for my niece Emma is getting pretty darn close to a end. I have finished quilting all the bookshelf items and am now working on the bottom drawers.    

The above photo was from 5/4/2023 when I had two sections of books to finish...

The above pic was taken 5/6/2023 when I completed stitching around all the shelf section books/items. That was a lot of arm exercise!

And here is Sunday's work; I made the hexagon pulls and quilted some details on the first drawer front, then appliqued the pulls with a narrow zig-zag.  Simple outlining to finish that drawer off.  After I finish the second drawer the same way, my plan is to trim the quilt and attach a black binding (still to be made!), before adding some stippling to the black background portions of the shelves.  I don't want them to get puffy when the quilt is washed.  There is a lot of lint on the quilt from the batting, so I will need to remove that with the lint roller before stippling the black. The outer border will need some  quilting too. Can't forget also some additional SITD on the crown of the bookshelf. It sounds like a lot left to do, but there is so much more behind me!  My niece has been patiently waiting a couple of years for her quilt to be finished. I'm hoping to send it to AZ with my brother his next trip out here. 

Thursday, May 4, 2023

Thrift Shop Finds and More Bookshelf Quilting

Tuesday after work I changed out of my scrubs and headed downtown for some shopping time before my hair appointment with daughter Elaine.  I always like to poke around the thrift stores for fabric finds, and was lucky at Goodwill to find a roll of fabric. 

It is an odd width, less than 60 inches, but there is plenty on the roll, maybe 3-5yards or so.

It is a P Kaufman screen print, per the selvage, and feels 100% cotton.  A great score at $15, too!  Neutrals aren't something I see much of at the thrift stores. I also found a kit and a valance. 

Under $3 each--can't beat that.  The valance is a linen/cotton blend and the block kit 100% cotton, never opened. On taking out the valance, it was quite thin fabric, but undamaged; It may get cut up and added to stash later. 

Precut pieces, sticky paper, batting piece, and instructions were included in the block kit.

These fabrics are more likely to enter the stash and precut drawers than be made into the pictured block.

Another section of the bookshelf is complete as of tonight, the middle left one, which had the highest number of books at 11.  I got one of the bookends quilted and two of the leaning books on the bottom left shelf.  Getting there!

Tuesday, May 2, 2023

Bookshelf Quilting Started

Well, I didn't mean to disappear for so long a stretch--however there was not much going on in the sewing room to report, until last weekend.  I did finally make myself get started on the quilting of the bookshelf quilt for my niece, Emma.  This project is getting a lot closer to being a "real quilt" at last. 

I started by quilting in the ditch with black thread along the vertical center support of the bookshelf, and then inside the horizontal shelves, the base, crown, and outer edges, using the walking foot. That took quite a while and my arms got tired with shoving the quilt back and forth through the machine's harp.

The middle shelf took more time, stitching in the ditch around all the books and the easel.  I added quilting around the inner yellow border of the cherry embroidery, the black border, and the the top edge of the green outer frame.   Then I concentrated on the top right shelf--which was fairly easy.  There is a lot of lint on the black background fabric from the batting; a sticky roller removes it as I go.  

Two sections done--six to go...Lots more to do, but I am happy that it has finally reached this stage!  There are quilting decisions to be made regarding the bottom section's drawers, and I need to make and attach the knobs.  So far, I am pleased with the way it looks. It would be great to be at the binding stage by the end of the week...

Design Wall Monday--Catching Up

 Design Wall Monday --See more design walls on Judy's Small Quilts and Doll Quilts blog.  I disappeared for awhile, due to computer issu...