"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)

Friday, July 21, 2017

Stretching Art 2018 Inspiration

I love looking at pics of plants that show geometric designs and progressions inherent to the plants themselves.   And have wanted to do a quilt based on them for a long time.

This year's challenge is "Focus" and I found a picture to serve as my inspiration.  This pic of a succulent with the lady bugs in the center has really caught my attention.    So this is the one that I'm definitely going to do.

However, having said that....I'm also intrigued by a couple of other pictures and am sooooooo tempted to use them as well.  Especially the one with the raccoon.   Don't you just wish you knew what he (or she) was focusing on?

Gratitudes:

1. The inspiration for creative endeavors that is all around us.

2.  The ability to take that inspiration and do something with it.

Row-by-Row Row #7

The row pattern for this was from Fabric Fanatics.  The original pattern was of a quilt shop hop bus on the way to a shop.  

I changed the pattern to feature a school bus on the way to school.  Not seen in the picture are the buttons I used for the headlights and for the lights up at the top.   With the exception of the sky fabric, all fabrics in the row are scraps.




And here is the original as the store made it.



Gratitudes:
1.  I finally made it to work this morning after dealing with the traffic mess left over from fatal accident on the freeway in the very early hours of this morning.

2.  It's Friday!

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Row-Hopping, Final Day in Dallas

I think I've finally hit most of the stores in the DFW area.....with stopping by the last two just this week.    I picked up two rows.

The store I stopped at was the "Bernina Sewing Center".  This was the store I hadn't been able to find several weeks ago thanks to google directions.  =P     It is a nice looking store and had a nice, but small selection of fabric.  Focus of the store is more on selling machines.

Their row was this cute one with two vehicles towing the little retro campers.  The sample was worked up in two ways (tree machine embroidered vs appliqued as in the pattern).  The shop has a 3D, scalloped awning in the sample which is really cute.

The second shop I stopped at was "Fabric Fanatics" and I love stopping at this shop.   The only fabrics in the store are batiks and they are all lovely, definitely drool worthy.....lol.

Their row is this cute shop hop bus on it's way to the next shop.   The pattern gives the basic pieces for all but the hills and road.   And encourages quilters to be creative when making it.  

This is one of the rows (#7) that I'm making for my row-by-row quilt this year.   But i'm changing it up and making the bus a school bus and doing a little school instead of a quilt shop.  I have the row fused and ready to stitch down with plans to do that tonite once I get home from work.

I'm working hard to get my quilt done so I can turn it in and as of this point I know of 5 stores that I've made rows from that don't have winners yet......here's hoping I can get mine done in time to turn it in.  =)

Gratitudes:
1. for the fun I'm having in finding the right scraps to make each row

2. For the progress I know I'm making with my diet and losing weight, in spite of days like today when my ankles and feet are swollen and hurting.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Planned Scrappy Projects

I've been sorting through my purple scraps so that I can get some of them used up.  Have been cutting squares from them for the puppies quilt that I showed a couple of days ago.

In the sorting I found two different fabrics that I have a large amount of scraps of.  These had to be ones that I bought at some point but I couldn't tell you where now.  

the one on the left has a metallic cold print on top of the purple.   Both of them have enough to do the background of some of the critter quilts that I have planned out, well at least this first plan, and I think the second one.  =)

Will probably pull bright colors for the cats.   Out to make a couple of cute quilts.

Gratitudes:

1. It's a new work week and I still have a job.

2. It's the middle of the summer.

Weekend doings

Progress has been made on my row-by-row quilt.  5 rows are now complete and sewn together.  I have also started the quilting process, and have the top two rows quilted.

Backing fabric was from my stash.  2nd picture shows the quilt draped over my little cutting table.  It is 36" wide so the quilt doesn't quite fit on it.   But it has not been hard to work with.

Approximate count of different fabrics in the quilt so far is over 50.  =)




Rows 3 & 4 are now pinned and ready for quilting.  Will wait on pinning row 5 until after rows 6 & 7 are completed and attached.

After all the rows are on and quilted then I will be adding a black border down each side the same size as the sashing in between the rows.   Am debating whether to add a border after that or not.

Am going to try to see if I can get it finished up this week and turned in.

Gratitudes:
1. Many of the fabrics have come from my stash of scraps, love working with them.

2. For being able to find fabric for skies to use in this years rows as well as in the AZ rows that I have collected for a quilt for my bed.


Weekend Hop

Wend by two more quilt stores for rows on Saturday.  First store was Texas Quiltworks and there I picked up their row pattern and a license plate for my friend Susan who blocks here.

I was disappointed in the shop, they are discontinuing carrying fabric and going only to selling and servicing Bernina machines.   So their fabric selection is minimal, and mainly older civil war repro's.   No winner turned in here, but then again I wouldn't want any of their fabrics...lol.








Next up was Blue Ribbon Quilt Shoppe.  I picked up their row kit because I'd love to do this one for myself at some point and I wanted the figure for in the car.  =)  However, I also do intend to make it for my row quilt but will need to scrounge through my novelty prints to find some other figure for the car.   Am hoping I have something that will work.

They did not have a winner yet that I saw so it is a possibility for turning it in.   there are still a couple of other stores closer that I haven't seen with winners posted yet, but will  have to call when I have my quilt finished.

Bottom pic shows the figure I picked.

Gratitudes:
1. Safe driving on my travels Saturday.

2. No rain while I was driving.  =)



 

Friday, July 14, 2017

Scrap Happy Fifteenth - Scrappy Pups

I finally decided I'd use some of my purple scraps because I have two big bags of them - a full 2-gallon sized one and a 3/4's full 1-gallon sized one and it is getting hard to close the tote that they are in.  (Yes I need to do something with more than just the purple ones!)    Might be time to use them......lol.

This will be the first quilt from the purple scraps.   My aim is to comfortably get them back into one bag (albeit a 2 gallon one)!  It will take at least a couple of quilts approximately 40" by 60" to actually get to that point and possibly more.



The next scrappy quilt that I'll be working on is this one featuring two pups.    I 'll be making it with 3" finished squares.  Bodies will either be light or medium purples, ears - dark purples and noses black.  The heart will most likely be pink.







For today's post I'm linking up with Kate who blogs at https://talltalesfromchiconia.wordpress.com



Gratitudes:

1. For all of the opportunities that have been given to me.

2. For the friends in my life.


Rows 4 & 5

Two more rows are in various stages of progress for the 2017 Row-by-Row.

The top row is from Minding My P's & Q's in Denton.  bottom row is from Cabbage Rose Quilting and Embroidery in Fort Worth.  The bottom row still needs to be stitched down and the wagon wheels embroidered.  Scraps were used for the design elements.




The last two pics show the two rows as they were done by the stores.

Gratitudes:

1. No rain this week so far.  =)

2. Almost to the weekend.


Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Row-Hopping, Day 3



Made it to 6 stores this past Saturday in the NW part of the metroplex - only 110 or so miles of driving this time!

In order, the first store I stopped at was The Old Craft Store in Carrolton.   Lots of wonderful fabric, although it was a little bit of a pain to get to because of construction.  Their row has this cute quilter's train on it.

Found another sky fabric and two lovely batiks for block backgrounds.   The two upper fabrics were in the clearance fabrics.  The alphabet one will go with my alphabet fabrics to be used in making kits to sell and the other is a batik.  Might use a bit of that for binding on the flamingo quilt, although I'm not fond of hand sewing batik binding down.











Store #2 was "Minding My P's & Q's" up in Denton.   Not a huge store, but a decent selection of fabric.   They were celebrating the store's 2nd birthday so had lots of sales going on.
Fabrics were buy 2 yds, get one free - So I ended up with part of the tan one for free.   The scrap bag is the size of a typical pattern bag and yes I stuffed it full - but managed to get it closed w/o it popping open.  =)

Smaller scraps here - precut triangles of the same fabric line in the red and blue on the left.  The green and yellow in the middle were just 8" and 7" by WOF, and then some squares and smaller scraps on the right.




The striped piece on top of the pile on the right is earmarked for the flags in this row that I got at Cabbage Rose Quilting.
Next into the scrap bag went this panel featuring different scenes from Texas.

And the last item that I managed to get into the scrap bag was this panel.  The print is by Jim Shore and there's nothing wrong with the panel that I can see.  This panel alone was worth more than the cost of the scrap bag ($5).   Can you tell that most stores who sell their scrap bags don't make money off of me?

Will take and finish this and then sell the quilt.
Store #3 was "Material Girl" which is also in Denton.  It is about 4 miles or so east of the previous one.  Their row was this cute one featuring a family of chickens.
Picked up two 1/3 yd pieces there for teddy bears.














Store #4 was "Quilt Country" in Lewisville.   I loved this store and would be happy living closer to it....ok maybe I don't need to given the size of my stash, but still.....lol.    Close to half of the fabrics that they have are batiks which I drooled over.  There was also a good selection of all the others that are on the market these days.

They also have 4 APQS long-arms that people can rent time on at a reasonable price.....just gotta take the $150 class to learn how to use them first.   Very tempting thought for me as I have some bigger quilts to get quilted coming up.  Their row features sail boats because the town is between two different lakes (aka reservoirs).  I'll probably put this one in my row quilt, but instead of having 'Quilt Country' on the building I'll put either "Bait" or "Marina".

Found a cute little wall-hanging and bought the kit because it was a reasonable price.  Alto got water fabric for the row, a scrap bag (prefilled) with more fabics that will work for the sky in rows, and a FQ that I'm may use in a row with Balloons if I can find something with city buildings on it.








Store #5 was "Must Love Fabric" in Grapevine.  Small store with an ok selection of fabric.    Google maps did not want to route me to the right place for the store so I ended up wandering trying to find it for 15 minutes initially.   Finally made it though.
Picked up another batik for block backgrounds, a blue for skies and blackberries for potholders (planned gifts).   And got a cute little key chain as a gift as well.


Store # 6 was "Quilter's Dream" in Colleyville.  Store was a decent size in square footage, but has a tiny selection of fabric.   There might have been 150 bolts all total of fabric - far less than what is in my stash!  One room was a classroom, and there was another room that I didn't see into that has her long-arm.  Given how little fabric was there I suspect that is what the owner makes a living on doing.  

She also had a room set up as a 'Quilter's garage sale'.  Quilters from the area (or her?) can sell their unwanted fabrics, books, patterns, etc there on commission.  Did find three pieces in there that I bought.

The grey on the right is one that I've had a piece of for years - the grey swirly print makes great fur, santa's beards, etc.  Middle one is a piece of Fairy Frost in a color I hadn't seen before, and then the pink/blue one I thought might make a good border for the flamingo or maybe binding.  Haven't laid it out with the quilt yet so don't know if it'll work or not.

The day of shop-hopping wrapped up with me getting caught in a horrible thunder storm  on the way home (or as I posted on FB - a "bad, bad, ugly bad" storm.....lol).   The best way to describe it is that if you take a blizzard with white-out conditions and then raise the temp so that you are dealing with rain instead of snow, you've got what I was trying to drive in.  I ended up pulling off the road twice because the rain was so heavy I couldn't see to drive.    Was finally able to drive again after about 30 minutes of combined waiting and within 5 miles had driven out of the rain. Texas storms can be so hit-or-miss to say the least.

Gratitudes:
1. Safe travels in the storm I was in on Saturday

2. As bad as it was, there was no tornadoes associated with the storm.

Monday, July 10, 2017

Monday Goals

Just a couple of goals at this point for this week.  

The first is to finish trimming to size all of the WOW, COC and tonals in the white & cream ranges so that I can put them away in my scrap tote.  I had so much stuffed into the tote that it wouldn't close.  Needless to say it has been a long while since I did that.


I took all the yardage and FQ's that should not have been in there first out first and that freed up some space.  Then took out everything that needed to be cut up into a standard (for me) size.  The multitude of stacks on my cutting table are what was in it that needed to be dealt with.  

I trimmed things down into 2.5", 3.5", 4.5", 6.5" squares, and WOF strips that were at least 2.5" or larger.   Then bagged all that in the correct baggie.

 The final piles of scraps for this tote yet to be dealt with are these two.   They were still in a tote on my cutting table (buried under other fabric in the pic above!) and were about 12" tall before I pulled them out.

 The next thing I want to get done this week is to get the triangles onto these blocks and get them squared up.












Then I'll get the alternate blocks made - there are 2 more blocks to be made and I need 8 of each of them.  Once they are done then I can set them together in the lay out below.   Have to be careful when I'm making the remaining blocks because I switched colors in the first blocks on where the greens lay and now I have to remember to do the same switch in the remaining blocks.

Gratitudes:

1. Lots of scraps to play with and have fun making quilts with

2. A job that pays the bills

Weekend Wrap-up

Made progress this past weekend in several areas.  First up on Saturday was a day trip of shop-hopping in the NW area of the metroplex to pick up more row patterns.   I'll blog about the trip in the next day or two after I get pictures taken of the rows I picked up and the goodies that came home with me.

I finished off the flamingo quilt top this weekend.  There are approximately 700 2.5" squares in the finished quilt top.  More than 20 different WOW's were used in just the section below the body of the flamingo.  A dozen or so different medium pinks and about 8 different dark pinks were used in the body.  The black and grey were scraps as well, but only one fabric for each of those colors.

Size of the top as is now - 48" by 60".

I'm still debating on whether to add a border of some sort around it.   What do you think?

I plan on doing a cross-hatch in the background area, but am still trying to decide how to quilt the flamingo.   Any ideas?

This one will be going up for sale when I get it quilted and bound.

And if you'd like to win a free magazine, don't forget to go here to sign up.  The giveaway ends on the 15th of July.

Gratitudes:
1. Made home safely Saturday after ending up in a horrendous thunderstorm (had to stop twice because I couldn't see to drive!)

2. The summer heat and humidity doesn't last forever


Friday, July 7, 2017

Progress and Sew30SewFun Update

In the mornings before work this week I've been working on making progress on the flamingo quilt.  I'm down to the bottom half of this quilt where it is mostly background.  And because I'm using 2.5" squares to make the quilt that would be real tedious to sew them together one at a time.  Not something that I'm fond of.  

So I'm strip-piecing together the WOW's in order to make it go faster.  I am piecing together strip sets of 4 fabrics and then sub-cutting those into the right widths.  Shown here are the subcut sets made from 14 different fabrics.   And nope, I didn't make a dent in my WOW's or use all of the different prints that I've got.

Having things cut and ready to go has helped me make progress on the flamingo quilt in the 30-45 minutes that I have to sew in the mornings before leaving for work.  =)

One of the fabrics that I picked up on last weekends shop-hop was this cream & green polka dot fabric.  I had my fingers crossed that the green would work with these blocks and it does!  Woohoo.  =)  So now I can draw out the remaining 16 blocks on the papers (so I can get my seams to line up right) and get this finished off.  =)







And in other news, I found out that I won a blog giveaway over on Annie's Ruby Slippers.  Good way to start the weekend!

Gratitudes:
1. Getting to leave work 3 hrs early today!

2. Good weather with no rain today


Giveaway - Now Closed

I've been trying to clean up my sewing room (always a work in progress!) so that I can get to my thread without trying to do the splits as I reach for various totes.  And in doing so I found a copy of this magazine that I've never made anything out of and am unlikely to ever to do so.   So I'm offering it as a giveaway for my blog readers.

I'm also trying out a new to me way of holding giveaways at the same time.

To enter click the link below to enter the giveaway.  The giveaway will stay open through Saturday the 15th.

Felted Magazine Giveaway

Good luck!


Gratitudes:

1. For those that read my blog and give wonderful feedback!

2. For friends around the world.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Row Hopping, Day 2 - Part 3

Shop #4 on my shop hop Saturday was Quilt Among Friends.  This is one of three shops within a 1 mile radius of each other.   This was a spacious store and had a good selection of fabrics.  

Will be putting this row into the quilt I hope to turn in.

Found a fabric for skies and one for block backgrounds for my teddy bears.
 Shop #5 was Peggy's Quilt Studio, the second shop in the 1 mile radius of three shops.  A small shop, with an eclectic selection of fabrics.  Never did see the fabric they had used for their row background (basically the entire row), so I did my own thing for this row.  You can see the results in this post - my version is the top row of the quilt.
 Found the bottom fabric on their sale rack and the 10" square with hearts by the cutting table.  The hearts were going to be used for the car in the row, but I space it.   Will see about using it in another row this year.  The pink fabric was seen as I was leaving so I went back and got a  1/4 of it.   Both of the yardages have snails on them.
 Shop #6 was Sew Fabricated and it was the final of the 3 stores that were all together.  This should be a fun row to do, altho lots of detailed work with these signs.  I wasn't impressed with the shop overall- seems they don't have a working bathroom in the shop at this point....
 Found a polka dot fabric that is perfect for the background I needed to complete the quilt I have started.   A good thing since I didn't take the blocks with me and was going on my memory of colors.  The Red/White is also earmarked for a future project.
Shop#7 was Sew It Up Bernina and it was the next stop on my shop-hop.  Nice store, not a huge selection of fabrics though.
 Found a Moda Grunge blue that will make a nice sky for future rows.
Shop #8 was the Richland Sewing Center.  Good selection of fabrics, although tightly packed into a corner of the store.  Half of the store was taken up by the machines that they sell, and 1/4 by the classroom area.  I bought the kit for this row because I didn't have the fabrics needed for parts of it.

Gratitudes:
1. A fun day of shop-hopping was had

2. Friends who help supply information and contacts that are needed