"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jer 29:11 (NIV)

Monday, November 20, 2017

QuiltMaker's 100 Blocks Vol. 16 Blog Hop Winners

Thank you to everyone who took the time to enter the giveaways on my blog during the blog hop!

The three winners have been drawn and emails have been sent out to them telling them and asking for mailing addresses.   If I get no response from any of them, then I'll draw a another name and try again.

The three winners are:

       Tricia L - Rose Fabric and coordinates
       Karen T - Set of Green FQ's
       Nancy B - The copy of the magazine to be sent from QuiltMaker

Congrats everyone!


Gratitudes:
1.  For all those who take the time to read my blog.

2.  For all the blessings that I have in my life.

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Moda & Aurifil Challenge Mini Quilt

I saw a challenge posted online that Moda Fabrics and Aurifil Threads were running this month in celebration of all that went on at Fall Market and the new fabric lines from Moda.   They blogged about it here.

the two main rules were - you had to use Moda Precuts and Aurifil thread to make a finished quilt, and the size was to have a perimeter between 40" and 100".

Well, there aren't a lot of challenges that I shy away from, and as it happened I had a few Moda precuts (alright, more than a few) that I hadn't done anything with since getting them one or another.  So I decided to challenge myself.    Well in looking at what I had, I realized why I hadn't done anything with them - most of them are not fabrics that I'd normally work with. 

However, challenging oneself occassionally is a good thing.   The one I decided to work with is called Botany.   And I pulled two Aurifil threads to work with - white for piecing and the variegated peach for quilting.


I decided to make 4 sawtooth stars blocks to form my quilt.  I used 5 different blues for the stars - the center for all four blockswas from on charm, and each block used another charm square to make the star points.  Two different fabrics were used to make the background of the blocks.  13 charm squares were used for the top.











Back of the quilt was made by sewing 9 more charms together in a nine-pach.   The binding used 6 more of the charm squares cut in half and then sewn together.

All total I used 28 out of 42 charm squares in the pack.

The peach Aurifil thread blended in with the peach in the blocks.   Finished size of the quilt is 12.5" square for a total perimeter of 50".   Now to decide what to do with this little quilt.

@modafabrics, @aurifilthread, #ModaAurifilMiniChallenge

Gratitudes:
1. Warmer weather today

2. Good thanksgiving service today at church and all of my friends there.



Friday, November 17, 2017

Progress and a new quilt

I've been able to get some quilting time in before work the last couple of days and have been making progress on getting flying geese units made. 

I've finished sewing 32 or sew flying geese, have 13 more that are pinned to the pp patterns and ready to sew, and approximately 90 more pieces of blue ready to sew (the pile in the back left). 

To have enough to finish the quilt though I'll still need to cut about 15-20 pieces of blues big enough for the geese.   And I know I'll need a bunch more blue cut for the star points.    Next up will be making a bunch of the flying geese that make the star points so that I square them up and then get more blocks put together. 

 And I'll also be starting a new and what has to be a quick project that has a due date.   Moda Fabrics and Aurifil thread are sponsoring a challenge for quilters to make a small quilt some where between 10" square to 26" square.  People are to use one of Moda's precuts and Aurifil thread to make it.  Entries are due before the end of the month.

I'm nuts, and I like a challenge, so I've decided to enter something for it.   As it happens I have a handful of Moda charm packs (among other precuts) and I decided on this one, and pulled these two Aurifil threads to use in making it.   Will use the white for piecing and the variegated peach for quilting it.    Finished mini quilt will be 12" square and there will be four 6" blocks in it.

Will be printing out my pp'd patterns and figuring out the size of cuts that I need to make today and will start work on it tonite after I get home.  =)

Gratitudes:

1. Only one month till I'm on vacation!  Oh wait, guess that means I should think about Christmas gifts....lol.

2. Being awake after a night where it was hard to sleep.


Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Scrap Happy 15th........

The next biggest scrappy project on my to-do list is this quilt.  Thankfully it is only 25 blocks that are 15" finished.   But then there is that pieced border.....lol......   This will be for my niece and her fiance and will be their wedding present.  It should finish out at 85" square.

The main colors in it will be assorted cream tonal fabrics for the background.   The stars and pinwheels will be scrappy blues, aquas, teals, and purples, with a touch of orange.





Here are the blues I've pulled to begin with all from the three 2 gallon bags of blue scraps in my stash.   I'm alternating between precutting the cream tonals and the blues/purples into the sizes needed for the quilts at this point. 

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This is the first block of 25.   15" finished size and uses 24 different fabrics in it.    There are three basic blocks in the quilt, all variations of this one (number of outer flying geese sections varies between them).

Anyone want to guess how many different fabrics will be in the finished quilt?


Gratitudes:

1. For my family

2. For a normal platelet (and not just my normal) count for the first time in 3 years


Sunday, November 12, 2017

QuiltMaker's 100 Blocks, Vol. 16 - Heartbeat Block & Giveaways (now closed)

My work has taken me to a number of different states and towns within those states, much as a road trip when you go on vacation does.  I've been accused of being part gypsy because I've moved around so frequently, and in many ways my life has been a big road trip - a few yrs here, then a few years in the next place and so on.  I've enjoyed all of it (well, maybe not the 70-80 mph winds in the winter time in Wyoming) and have been privileged to make some good friends along the way. 

One stop of my life's road trip was spent teaching pre-engineering at a vocational school in a very small town in Wyoming.  While I didn't stay there for long because of circumstances, I was fortunate to make several very good friends at the school where I taught.  One of them, Barb (in the middle of the pic), is always on the go doing something - she is a nurse and works at the hospital, and she also teaches the CNA classes at the vocational school in where I taught engineering for 10 months.  The last several years her students have decorated the hallway leading to their classroom with garland that is shaped into the output of an EKG.   It was this display that the design for this block came from.


This is a shot of one of the sample blocks I made while testing the pattern.

I use red, white and blue fabrics to test my block patterns because then the blocks will always go together in quilts for injured veterans.













I've just set the blocks together, but with coloring reversed on alternate blocks so that the color bands flow across the quilt.   This quilt layout reminds me of the large cities where I've lived over the last 40 years of my road-tripping life - Phoenix, Boston, and the Dallas area.   All are busy cities with lots of buildings and traffic and the 'heartbeat' of the cities is very active and busy.

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Next up is a layout showing what can be done with the block when you play around with which sections of the block that you use.   This layout was designed to use a large scale print as the background and allows the maker to feature large sections in the solid white squares.

This layout reminds me of the slower pace of life in the towns of Lafayette and Fort Wayne.  Both are smaller than the big cities where I've spent so many years of my life, but I've made some really good friends in both of them.  And Lafayette is where I went to grad school at Purdue for my degree in education.   Both towns are unforgettable stops along the road trip of my life.



For this layout of a table runner, I played around with the sections of the block so that only one band of the color goes across the layout for a table runner or bed runner.  This simple layout reminds me of the time I spent in Wyoming and of living in the small town of Rawlins out in the middle of nowhere in I-80.     Again another unforgettable stop along the way of my road trip in life.



And finally, by once again using only part of the sections of the block, along with a few additional blocks made this 36" square table topper.    The additional blocks used in the setting were the 4 corner blocks (small green squares, small pink triangles, and large background squares), the green square in the middle of the quilt, and the pink/green rail fence blocks.  Fabrics for this all came from my stash.   I've named this one, "Heartbeat of a Friend" and it is in honor of all those that I've been privileged to call my friend over the course of my life's "road trip".




I hope you've been inspired by the sample layouts that this block allows you to make.  And I hope that the different layouts inspire you to experiment with the block and come up with a layout that makes you think of your "road trip" and friends.

And now for the giveaways to celebrate my 5th block published, the first giveaway is for a copy of the magazine QuiltMaker's 100 Blocks, volume 16.   This will be mailed out from QuiltMaker.  To enter use the rafflecopter widget below.




And the second giveaway will have two winners - One person will win a lovely assortment including a 1 yard piece of a rose print, a FQ of the same print and three coordinates.   A second person will win a 4-FQ set of green prints from Benartex.  Enter through the rafflecopter widget below.






Gratitudes:
1. For all those that keep me inspired to keep on designing.

2. For the inspiration that comes from friends and all that I see and do along this road-trip we call life.




Friday, November 10, 2017

2018 BOM Sashing fabrics - heads up.........

I've found the fabrics that I'll be using for the sashing for the 2018 BOM that I'm designing. 

There will be three fabrics used for the 'sashing' and the sashing will be a part of each block.    For the quilt you'll need the following:

  • A green - will be used to show grass and leaves
  • a dk brown - for the "cages" in the zoo
  • a gray - for the "path" or "walkway" between the animals
The fabrics I'll be using are shown below.   I picked up one yard of each and that should be plenty for what is needed, although I will admit I have not calculated out yet exactly how much will be needed.  I'm hoping that I'll have enough of one of these for the binding as well.



Gratitudes:
1. For being able to find what I think will be good fabrics for the sashing on the BOM last weekend when out shop-hopping

2.  For feeling better as I lose the weight I need to.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Finished it ..... and even early!

Finished the table-topper I've been making to show one way my block in QuiltMaker's 100 Blocks, v.16 can be used.    
I'll be showing in totality in my blog post on Monday for the Blog Hop to celebrate the release of the magazine.   But meanwhile, here's a peek at a bit of it.  =)  

Don't forget to come back on Monday for the start of the blog hop.   There will be a couple of giveaways in my blog posting that day.


Gratitudes:
1.  My last minute project is done....and a few days early!

2.  Bridge is underway and should be complete in 2-3 weeks.   Yeah!

Monday, November 6, 2017

Scrappy Goodness Coming

One of the big projects that I have coming up in the very near future will be a queen-sized scrappy quilt that will be a wedding present.

I'm saw a quilt layout idea from Missouri Star Quilt Company that I'm planning to use for the quilt.  I love that the look of the alternating blocks is achieved with just one block.

My version will be in blues, aquas, teals, purples with a touch of orange.  I plan to do scrappy for the stars and pinwheels, and have a single fabric for the background (I know shock of shocks).

I'd debated on what size to make the squares, but I've decided on 15" then I'll only need 25 blocks to make the quilt.   A good thing when there are a whole mess of flying geese in this quilt (260 of them to be precise!). 

I've already figured out what i want to do with the border so that is a good thing.  and to me this quilt just calls out for a pieced border.   Thankfully tho I can add it as I sew the rows together.  Then finish with a solid outer border.   =)

Now to get started on it because  it's gonna take me a while to get made....lol.   And I'd love to have the top finished shortly after the new year so I can send it off for quilting and have plenty of time to get it back to me before the wedding.

Gratitudes:

1. For an easy pattern to make for the wedding present

2. For having the stash to pull the needed fabrics from for it.

Weekend Progress - Nov 6

With the blog hop coming for the release of Volume 16 of QuiltMaker's 100 Blocks coming next week, I decided to make a quick quilt showing just one way that my block can be used.   I was able to get half of the pp'd block sections made over the weekend and pressed.   Still need to trim them to size though.   8 of the remaining pp'd sections have been sewn as of this morning leaving me with only 12 more to sew.  The final 4 sections are pieced 'normally' and I'll make them after piecing the others.   I'm hoping to get all of the remaining sections made tonite after I get home from work.  Final project will be a table topper that will be approximately 36" square.

The other project I made progress on was the second wall hanging of my triptych of the Christmas story.    Angels are now fused down and this one is ready to layer, baste and quilt.   Fabrics used for the angels are a silver Fairy Frost for the biggest one and two different prints with gold metallic in them for the smaller ones.

I'll be doing raw-edge stitching of the applique elements in this and the other hanging that matches this as I quilt them both.




Gratitudes:

1. Safe travels with friends yesterday as we all went 2.5 south for a senior recital of the daughter of good church friends.

2. For the Trim Healthy Mama plan that is helping me to get my diet under control and, Lord willing, continue to lose the weight that I need to.


Thursday, November 2, 2017

Teddy BOM - Block 10 is up

Meet Bentley the Pilgrim Bear.  He is dressed in his Sunday finest clothes and ready to celebrate Thanksgiving.

You can find the pattern here for downloading:

Download here

Enjoy!




Gratitudes:
1. Antibiotic is helping the sinus infection (now to only remember to take it!)

2. Weather is warmer.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Triptych in progress......

The second design in the planned triptych is taking shape.  The design is shown here beside a commissioned version of the first one that I've got up on my design wall.

This one will be the shepherds in the fields as they were given the good news by the Angels.  Everything is fused down except for the angels.  I'm thinking at this point I'll use a light grey fairy frost fabric for them.   There will be one big angel and then several smaller ones for the angelic host.

Once I've got all the designing done, then I'll write this one up and put the pattern up for sale.

Gratitudes:

1. Have meds to knock the sinus infection that I'm fighting.

2. Got to work safely in spite of other drivers.

Friday, October 27, 2017

UFOs and Tea Towels

I was looking for something this week in the stash when I ran across these three linen tea towels that I don't even remember buying......oops.   I'm sure that I would have bought them to use in quilt projects.   I've got one more stashed away in a different tote that I do remember buying for use in a quilt.....but nope, I haven't gotten to that project yet....LOL....

I love this one, and will eventually use the top part for something.

I like the Siamese cats on this one, and the border at the bottom would be fun to include as well in a project.  Most likely wouldn't use the calendar part tho.



I do remember looking for an arizona one to use in a project with the AZ bicentennial fabric that I have stashed somewhere (now where did I see it again?)  I'll have to decide whether to cut it up or use as is and then add around it with my fabric.
And here is a shot of my London tea towel quilt almost all together.   The top is together now but I couldn't find a pic of it.  I cut apart the London scenes from a tea towel and appliqued them onto squares.  Then designed and made blocks to remind me of my trip to London back in 1997.  The fabrics used in the blocks were ones that I bought at Lloyd's & Spencers while there and were all Rose & Hubble fabrics. 

This one got set aside and hasn't been finished because I've never been able to figure out what I wanted to do for a border on it.  Any one have suggestions for me?  lol

I'll finish it one of these days!

What about you - have you used tea towels or other "non-traditional" fabrics for quilt projects?

Gratitudes:

1. Fall weather and cool temps

2. Better eating habits are helping to heal the inflammation I've been fighting for the last few years.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

QuiltMaker's 100 Block Blog Hop Coming Nov.

QuiltMaker's blog hop highlighting blocks from Volume 16 of their 100 Blocks magazine is slated to take place November 13-17th.   The theme for the blog hop this time is "Road Trip". 

Plan now to take part in the blog hop as various block designers blog about their block, the inspiration behind it, and options for using it.

I'll be taking part this time, and my post will be live on Monday the 13th.   I hope you stop by on your "road trip" thru the blogs to see what I've got for you!

    

Gratitudes:

1. For there being a plan B as the second bone graft for the dental fails for the second time.

2. For the dentist/practise being a good one, and knowing that I'll not have to pay much if anything for the bridge that is plan B.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

More Mug Rugs / Snack Mats

I've been working to make a dent in the bags of cross-stitch UFOs (3 Ziploc bags of various sizes).  These three were the next ones that I pulled to work on. 

All of them were made using scraps and have finished at approximately 12" by 16".

I'm currently in the process of quilting/binding them.  Mermaid is quilted and has the binding sewn on but not down.  Golfer is quilted, and I need to find something for the backing of the pig.

Once done these will all be for sale.

Gratitudes:

 1. Cooler Weather

2. For a fairly easy process to get a replacement inspection tag for the car (hey I'm only 2 months late in getting it on the car and don't know where it went)

Thursday, October 19, 2017

UFO's and Mug Rugs

Over the years I've finished a bunch of cross-stitch projects that have never been finished up.  Have started working on turning smaller cross-stitch UFO's projects and novelty prints that I've had pulled for ages into finished projects that I can list for sale.

This first one was a novelty print square that I'd found in a scrap bag at a quilt store somewhere.     Next up was a cross-stitch piece featuring Iris.    Green scraps were used in both of them to make the mug rugs.




Two more mug rugs are in process, both starting with cross-stitch UFO's and more green scraps. 



Gratitudes:

1. Texas fall weather.  =)

2. Friends who stay in touch.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Weekend Finishes

Finished off this wall hanging on Saturday.  The black was a laser cut kit by Dilys Fronk that I'd bought years ago.   This is one of two that I have of this one and the plan is to sell it.  All fabrics were from the stash, and the batting was from a remnant piece.

Second thing finished over the weekend was this little wall hanging.  It is 12" square and is made from the Navy bear block that I remade for my wall hanging.  This will be going to my cousin because the block was designed and named in honor of her Dad, my Uncle Charles.   I'm hoping she likes it. 

The fabric used for the backing, flange, and binding were all scraps.

Gratitudes:

1. I'm alive!

2. For the food that I have to eat and that nourishes my body.


Saturday, October 14, 2017

Scrap Happy October

I tested the first block for what will be my BOM for 2018 today using scraps.     The working name for the BOM is Calico Zoo.   At this point I'm not sure if I'm going to do 9 or 12 blocks in this one.   I do plan to have the setting made as part of each block and have a possible design in mind, but not drawn up.

I used all scraps to make this block.   The background was from a 12" remnant sized scrap, and the remaining were out of my scrap bags.  The mane and ears are 3-D.  Most, if not all of the blocks, will have two possible ways to make them - with or without 3-D elements.

Check out the rest of the postings from those of us that are taking part in Scrap Happy postings by going here .


Gratitudes:

1. The test block worked out ok (twas the first real time to design with 3-D elements like these).  =)

2. Clear weather today.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Kit or UFO?

I do a lot of fusible applique and occasionally I'll buy the laser-cut, pre-fused kits when I'm out doing things like the Row Hop.  But I usually don't buy kits as a rule because I've got the stash to make most anything.

However, probably 10+ years ago I bought a set of three laser cut appliques of the Christmas story designed by Dylis Fronks (the shepherds, the three wise men, and the nativity) to make into a wall hangings for myself.  You can see (or buy) all of the three that I have at this link. And I even bought two of the nativity one, although I'm not sure why.  And since buying them they've languished in my stash through 4 or 5 moves back and forth across the country.  Can't decide if they are a UFO since they are cut or just a kit because I bought them like this. 

At any rate, I found the extra nativity one this week and decided to actually get it made up intead of just sticking it back into the stash somewhere.  The applique is about 16" by 23" in size and comes all folded up in roughly the size of a piece of copy paper.   After so many years that leaves a lot of folds that are a pain to deal with.
 




But with coaxing and a hot iron ready to tack things down while working to straighten out the kinks, you finally end up with something that looks really nice.

I plan to stitch down the applique with a straight stitch around the edges and will use that to quilt it at the same time.  So the next step is to dig out material for the back of it after trimming the background to size.

The cover sheet for the applique shows this with a rounded top to the wall hanging, but I think I'm going to leave it as a rectangle to make binding easier.  I do plan to sell this one because I really don't need two of the same banner. 

This picture shows a quilted banner made with all three of the appliques by trimming off the rounded tops of two of the three and I really like the look to it.  I may take and finish mine in a similar manner.  It's actually one applique, but I can do the same thing by trimming away the upper parts of the pieces that I have.  I'll eventually make mine up.....gotta find them again somewhere....

So UFO or Kit?   Which would you say this is?

Gratitudes:
1. Cool fall weather has been here for a couple of days.

2. Made major process on a project at work this week.

Monday, October 9, 2017

More Bears......

Finished the final two blocks of the military bears.  First block was this one for the Air Force.   This is Sterling and is named for a long time family friend who passed away several years ago.

 Second block made this weekend was this one for the Coast Guard.   He is named Nick in honor of one of my ex-students who is going into the Coast Guard.


















And this is the layout I've got started.  The two-patches along the outside are what I'm thinking of for the border, with the same light blue used as the background filling in the remainder of the border.

Still to be done is to rework the the Navy bear to tweak his face.   Redesign is done, I just need to make the replacement block.  Once done I can put the quilt together.












And this is Jan, who at a quilt retreat and ironing the quilt that she is working on.

Gratitudes:
1. Cooler weather is due tomorrow.
2. My toe doesn't hurt after clobbering it this past weekend and the torn nail will eventually grow out.

Sunday, October 8, 2017

There might be a scrap problem here.....

I admit it, working with a limited palette of fabrics drives me nuts.  So when working with a limited color palette such as several of the next scrappy critters, I end up using umpteen different fabrics in the colors chosen.  I stopped by my local quilt shop and found a bunch of new goodies in their scraps bin (an antique washing machine).  Quickly filled a couple of their ziploc while the owner of the shop was telling another customer about how full I can pack the bags and still get them to close.  =)

Those two bags of scraps expanded into these piles.   One of the bags was almost full with scraps of just one fabric, a lovely light blue & cream floral type print.  All I'll need to do with it is to add a cream total and trim up the blues and I'll have the foundation of a quilt.  Most of the pieces are large so lots of fabric to work with.   And the bottom left pile are greys which I don't have a lot of in my stash.


Then there were these hexies already sewn together.   And there were a stack of hexies that had been cut but not sewn together.  I plan to applique these onto a quilt top for Sunshine Quilt Guild.









The problem with the hexie sections is that whoever put them together  just overlapped and then did a satin-stitch over the edges.   Unfortunately because there was no stabilizer used the bias edges stretched.   So I'll be doing some frog stitching  and then stitch them back together the right way.........sometime............lol.








And the final set of blocks started out as pairs of squares sewn together.  They started out life as a charm pack, and then the shop didn't do anything more with them.  I've got them sewn together in 4 patches ready to trim to the same size.    These will also get put together for Sunshine.  Need to decide what color though to sash the blocks with first before I can do that.

Gratitudes:
1. For lots of scrappy fun yesterday

2. For the cooler weather yesterday