Monday, January 21, 2019

Winning the Bobbin Race

The quilting is done on Batiki Argyle II.
 The photo above has low lighting to show the shadows of the quilting. 
Below, the lights are on and you can see the vibrant colors in the quilt. 

I planned from the start to make a quilt to throw over my gray leather couch at Christmas time. I'll have to look through my blog to see how many years ago I started this one.

For some reason, Sunday is binding day in my world. It was so sweet to change my bobbin for the next project and see how close I came to running out of thread when sewing on the binding. 

Now onto the hand sewing part of the binding. 
Breakfast Club is on Thursday so I will have it done by then.

I didn't do quilting resolutions for the New Year but I did make a list of projects to tackle for the month of January and broke that down into a weekly list. It is always easier to stay on track and tackle a UFO or two at the beginning of a new year so my second UFO of the year is one I started last February. 

But first I had to get someone out of the way...
Eli had to sit on top of an area I had pinned last night. He even pulled out a couple of straight pins. That is freaky! I spend too much time at vets with my animals...all I need is to explain my cat is swallowing straight pins! But I'm confident he just played with the pins.

This is a king-sized quilt that I do plan to use on my bed in the summer. I still have to make a piano key border. The pattern is, "Gimmie Diamonds," by Four Paws Quilting. It is designed for fat quarters with directions for five sizes. I really like the pattern and could see it looking great with many of the wildlife fat quarters I've got in my stash.

Last week I took down some of my Bucilla Christmas items. I hate putting them away but I also wanted to get to work adding a lining to some of them. I belong to two Bucilla Facebook groups and have learned of a pretty quick and easy way to add a lining to stockings that are already completed so I think it is worth the extra work to spiff up my existing stockings.

New Bucilla projects are always a part of my evenings...but this time it is actually a Bucilla UFO. I "started" a Noah's Ark ornament kit with 50 animals about five years ago. I didn't even finish one animal when I put it away to open another kit. 

Three weeks into a new year and I'm feeling very proud of my progress.
 Of course it has been very cold and dark outside so I am staying inside most of the day...

 and my house keeping duties might have been neglected a little.

Monday, January 14, 2019

Moose Everywhere

After looking at how other bloggers approach goal setting, I decided monthly goals broken down into weekly lists might be the best way to keep me on track. 

Completing the three sets of Christmas Moose dolls had been on my list twice for weekly projects. I am now officially ahead for gift giving next Christmas. 

These dolls are not difficult but they sure are time consuming. 

On Saturday I had a Sew-In with my Material Girls quilting group. There was a little show and tell which I mostly didn't photograph but there were three quilts from Sharon that had an amazing story. 

Forty-one years ago, Sharon's mother and brother were on a road trip to come and visit her when they were killed in a car accident. Recovered from the wreckage was a set of applique butterfly blocks.
Some of the fabrics had scraps from clothing family members had worn. 

Over the years, Sharon and her sister-in-law, Joyce, who is also a member of Material Girls, made more butterfly blocks. The family experienced another life event when there was a house fire. The butterfly blocks survived though some got a little discolored. 

Sharon has three daughters and decided to make three quilts from the blocks.
 Each quilt has a different border design. 

While being quilted by a Material Girls member, the November 30th earthquake hit and one of the quilts in the quilting frame got a small hole Sharon was able to repair. 

The stories quilts tell...this one was 41 years in the making. It gives one new hope for those UFOs you keep for so many years in your stash.

Back to my quilting progress...
I'm getting close to finishing the quilting on Batiki Argyle II. 

And I did say the moose were everywhere.

Sunday I got texts from two of my neighbors warning me I had a bull moose in my yard. I placed a frozen pumpkin left over from Halloween on the wooded side of my driveway a couple of months ago. The pumpkin had been sitting on my front porch.

Moose are known for strolling onto people's decks and porches to partake of pumpkins so I did place that pumpkin where I thought a moose might notice it without getting on my front porch.

I watched him go all the way down to the ground to make sure he got every last bite of the pumpkin. Temperatures were hovering around 40-degrees most of the day after a week of sub-zero temperature. 

Not the best lighting situation for outdoor photos but we are gaining almost two minutes of sunlight everyday. I live in a mountain valley and the sun does not get high enough in the sky to shine on my house yet. I think I lose the direct sunlight for about two months. There are lots of cloudy days in the winter that make no difference when it comes to whether or not I get direct sunlight. 

Sunday, January 6, 2019

Week in Review

A few moose were given faces and partially dressed.

Quilting was started on Batiki Argyle II.

And I finished a Bucilla 3-D Santa kit from 2010. 

I made a lot of changes to the construction methods on this kit. On my public Facebook page, someone suggested using a doll support stand to hold up my Santa instead of the complicated directions of sticking a wooden dowel in place after all the parts were made. Blogging and sharing on Facebook really help me so many times. Even the most obvious solutions don't come to mind and it's great to get a little feedback.

Monday, December 31, 2018

Final Finish for 2018

It hit me to tackle one of the few quilts I started piecing this year at the May Breakfast Club meeting. It is the pattern, “Lotus,” by Jaybird Quilt’s and uses the ruler “Hex and More,” to cut all the pieces for the pattern. 

I already had most of the large triangle blocks constructed so I set them up on my design wall.

Above is the layout from the pattern but I didn’t love this look with my blocks. Something else came to me that would be so much more fun for quilting designs.

I only had to make seven more blocks to get this layout which is 69 x 89-inches. It was really a quick quilt to put together except a few times I stitched the triangle blocks together at the wrong angle so seam ripper work was involved.

One of the things I like about Breakfast Club is it gets me to try patterns and rulers I might not be drawn to as I shop at quilt stores. I never would have picked this one but I really enjoyed the ruler and how nicely all the pieces with bias edges came together. 

The first thing I did after I got the rows sew together was to top stitch a 1/4 around the outside edge to stabilize the outside edges. I even have a wide-backing piece of batik fabric in my stash that will work it sits in "To Be Quilted," que now.

Saturday, December 29, 2018

December Breakfast Club

Show and Tell from Breakfast Club.

The ladies did this pattern a couple of months ago, It’s Sew Emma’s, “Peppermint Lane BOM.”

Mesh bags are all the rage at the quilt shop where we meet, Seams Like Home. This beer themed bag will hold two growlers. You might have to be a beer drinker or know one well to know what a growler is. 

Love this puppy dog face! Didn’t find out the pattern designer.

The quilt shop’s Saturday Sampler quilt for 2018.

This dachshunds-in-sweaters fabric backs an adorable pattern by Elizabeth Hartman.

Such and adorable quilt.

A cute snowman panel quilt.

I got a new iPad for Christmas and am posting from it. The photos load quickly from my iPhone but doing a long post is not very user friendly.  I have a goal for 2019 to do more blog posting. Smaller more frequent posts. 

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

2018 Year in Review

Here we go! Projects finished in 2018.

I completed the quilting on six quilts.

Sky Full of Christmas Stars, the mystery design from Breakfast Club, 2017. The pattern was a Moda Bake Shop quilt designed by Kristina Brinkerhoff from Center Street Quilts. I added a"border" to finished the star shapes around the outside. Finished size, 69 x 83-inches.

Scrappy Christmas Star from 2018. A pattern of my own design using scraps from the Christmas Stars quilt.  About 39-inches square.

Faux Hawaiian Applique, 63 x 75-inches. This quilt design started from a challenge in the Material Girls group to create a quilt using a panel. I had a set of printed Hawaiian applique panels just screaming to be part of the challenge. 

And because I loved the scraps so much I had to make a mini quilt, Scrappy Hawaiian, 30-inches square.

I got two tops quilted that had been patiently waiting their turn. The Breakfast Club mystery from 2016 and Bright Blooms, another Breakfast Club project.

There were a few quilt tops added to the "needs to be quilted" pile of projects. 

I made a great dent in my Sandra Cozzolino cross stitch Santa ornaments. 

Vintage Sets

2016 Caribbean Santas

2017  National Parks Santas

Bucilla Kits

Airplane Santa

Nordic Snowman

Santa Paws and companion ornament kit.

Christmas Kitties and companion ornament kit.

Jungle Bells ornament kit.

Ugly Christmas Sweaters ornament kit.

And a new category for me, Clothing.

Here is my adorable grand niece in a smocked dress I made her.

Two batik rayon tops.

And one final sewing related project, a set of Merry and Chris Moose. 

What I didn't include were my extensive landscaping projects. I am already starting to think about 2019 landscaping projects along with the quilting, cross stitching, Bucilla kits and clothing. 

Monday, December 17, 2018

More Christmas Quilting

I am definitely on a roll with my quilting.

This scrappy star quilt is just under 40-inches square and was made with the triangle scraps cut from the Christmas Star quilt I finished quilting in my last post. Sometimes staying in the quilting mindset really works to keep my creative thoughts flowing.

I was so thrilled earlier this year when I came up with this design to use my scraps. I wanted to have it done to share at the upcoming Breakfast Club Mystery class on Dec. 27th. My goal was to be able to share both star Christmas quilts together. The star quilt from my previous post was last year's mystery pattern.

 Here is the very fun backside!

Two Christmas quilts one season!

I have two more Christmas quilt tops I would love to get quilted before 2019 but I have had a hard time finding backing fabrics I like. I ordered some a couple of months ago but when they arrived I found the quality of the fabric was not worthy to be used.

I ordered two more pieces of backing fabrics paying more attention to the manufacturers, 
We'll see which backing shows up first. 

In the meantime I really need to spend some more time working on my Christmas moose dolls....and Christmas cards...and shopping for a few more presents.