Monday, March 29, 2010

Design Wall Monday!

I am always interested in others "design wall" but haven't figured out how to link just this one post to Judy's blog , but I will try one more time (if you link your entire blog, the link will automatically get erased).  At any rate, even if I am unable to link from her page back to mine, for those of you who check into my blog, this is what I am working on.  Last year, I cut out all these 6.5 squares and 3.5 x 4.5 rectangles  to make a quilt from a pattern I got at AQS.  It was much too small for me, so out came EQ6 and I "re-designed" it to be much bigger.  It really took some figuring out because it is not a straight set.  It will be different because the pattern has you making different sets of block and setting them specifically---I on the other hand am only interested in the light and dark side of the block.  The fabric's I used are from a Amy Butler line and the darks are from someone else---I don't remember.  The darks are not really "my thing" (I ordered from on-line), but I really like the "liberated" look of it---you might see that some of the "lights" look a little "dark", but that is okay.  I have finished all the light blocks and now will begin to work on the dark ones.  What you see is just a couple of blocks I put together to test my layout.  This is a UFO, so I am feeling good about finishing this quilt---the only problem is the quilts I was working on, now become UFO's :-)  As you can also see, I need to take my wall down and try to get the threads off.  It is one of those sticky design walls, and I am hesitate to wash it (the directions say I can), because I am afraid it will lose it's "stickiness".  I am thinking of just putting up some batting or flannel---just don't know how to do it yet.

Oh well---such is the life of a quilter.  Have a great reminder of the day/week!


Friday, March 26, 2010

Do I Show the Real Me When I Blog?

I was reading the latest blog entry by Lane in his blog, That Man Quilts  .  Essentially he asked the question, do we show the "real" us when we blog?  That is an interesting question, and I must confess I do not.  I am a very private person and I must confess, not always very trustful.  It takes me a while to get to know people, and until I do, I am pretty guarded, I am not "weird" and really have a very good reason (I think) for being that way.  I don't post a picture of myself, nor of my family, because honestly,  this blog really isn't about them or our life, it is about my creative journey.   In looking around blogland, I find however, although there a many who do share specifics about their life (and I enjoy them), there are also many who don't.  Am I being selfish, enjoying reading about others, but not willing to share anything about me?

In addition, I really wanted my blog to be about quilting.  I didn't really want to share a lot of my personal  life because I use my blog as an outlet.  When I am feeling a bit "low", writing in my blog, and reading others, really helps to remove that little "thunder cloud", although I must confess, when I read sad thing, I get sad.   I really rather read about quilting, funny stories and interesting observations, involving quilting (did I tell you I really enjoy quilting).   It really isn't necessary that I get a lot of comments daily (although I really enjoy them), it is enough that I see the visit numbers going up and I know that someone is reading my comments.  There is so much sadness, unkindness/meaness, dishonesty, etc. in the world, I guess I want to keep my "issues" to myself, and focus on things that help me forget for a minute, that "life isn't always fair, and that there is a lot of "stuff" going on daily.  I guess I would rather have a couple of minutes when my world is free form those things, even if only for a little while.  Now the question is, does that make me dishonest?  I don't think so, just makes me human.

Now, I am going back to blogging about quilting.  Thanks Lane,  for a thought provoking opportunity. 


Thursday, March 18, 2010

Quilting Finished!!!!!

I finished quilting the UF Quilt!  I had originally begun making this quilt as a give-a-way.  I thought it would get lots of wear and tear and so really didn't put a lot of thought into making it---still trying to do my best but not being fussy (as I can get sometimes).  Anyway, I ended up deciding to not gift the quilt, but rather keep it and use it as a sofa TV quilt or travel quilt.  I really like how this quilt turned out.  The fabric was some I had obtained through our Guild auction and was unusual to say the least.  I used tea dyed muslin, which I have found out had bad "spots" through it, but that hasn't even dampened my like.  I put a soft flannel on the back, so it will be a great cozy quilt.  I will post yet another when I get it all bound.

I also purchased two book on dyeing.  I am really looking forward to the warm weather.  Both books appear great---I haven't read them completely, but I have gotten out my notebook to take notes---I can't wait!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Yet Another Finish!!!

I completed the UF Quilt (AKA the UG Quilt) and am now quilting it.  This quilt really turned out better than expected.  I was going to use a panto, but when I was loading it I saw a area that I had stretched out a bit.  I don't know if this has ever happened to you, but I have had really bad results when I have used a panto on a quilt with stretched areas---the stretched part will often wrinkle.  I decided to freeehand a large meander with an occassional swirl.  It is looking okay, and I am quilting "out" the wrinkles, although it looks like when I get to the end, I will really have to do some smoothing out.  I read somewhere that on the areas that are stretched, if you mist them with water and pat in place and leave the area to dry, the stretch parts shrink.  It seems to be working a little bit anyway.  Hopefully, I will finish quilting this tomorrow and will then move on to the 4 patch!

I have also decided to abandone the Twister Quilt.  I don't really like it---it is to uneven--one part without contrast, the other with.  It looks all jumbled---I am going to cut it up and use it in a string quilt.  I am going to make the Twister though, but I will use much more thought, maybe mix some prints with some solids to really bring out the pattern!

Well, have a good night!

Monday, March 15, 2010

Burgurdy Buttons Give-A-Way

Head over to Jaybird Quilts and enter the Burgurday Buttons Give-A-Way.  Sounds like fun!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Focus Deficit!

Poor Contrast

Better Contrast

The Twister Ruler---sorry for the glare

Quilt before it is cut into blocks----

I really think I have a focus deficit!  I have a hard time (often) focusing on one project.  I start something, see something else that interest me, or run across interesting fabrics in my own stash (looking for something else), and I am OFF to another project.  Same thing happened yesterday.  I was working diligently on my UF (Unusual Fabric) Braid quilt (never mind, I had gotten involved with this quilt, while I was in the process of finishing up another one---in fact have made 2 quilts when I should have been working on the original one---but I digress).  Anyway, I had read a post on Mary's blog ( when she had pictured quilting on a Twister Quilt.  I had heard of this quilt before but wasn't successful in finding the needed ruler (the Twister ruler).  Anyway, Mary, had a link to a store where you could get the ruler and I went for it!  The ruler came yesterday, and before I knew it I was pulling fabric to try the quilt.  Last year the Guild  had a 10 inch exchange.  The fabric were novelty prints (which I don't buy), but I thought it would be fun.  I got a lot of 10 inch  squares that have just been setting around, so I pulled those.  I really didn't want to use "good" fabric on a test quilt, so the squares were perfect.  As you can see, this is another UF quilt.  One side of the quilt, at this time, really doesn't have enough contrast, but you can see on the other side the pinwheels that form.  This is a fun quilt to make, and I know I will do it again but this time be more selective in my fabrics.  The pattern is made for "Layer Cakes", so I've added that to my list of things to look out for at AQS.  "Layer Cakes" are kind of expensive (at least I think so), so it might be more cost effective to just get some FQ's and cut them into 10 inch squares.  I am going to make the quilt again in a larger size so I have to figure out how many FQ's I would need.  The quilt I am making will end up being 60 inches square with borders using 36 -  10 inch blocks.  Anyway, I am going to play a little more, and then try to finish the Braid Quilt.  I only have about 3 more braids to go since this is only a twin maybe after I finish it, I can get back to the quilt that I should be working long as I don't look at anything else.  My dryer was broken and I got a new one yesterday, so I will have a busy day---sewing and washing!!!  What fun!!!!

Have a great Saturday---don't forget to turn your clocks ahead one hour tonight before going to bed!


Thursday, March 11, 2010

First Finish for March!

 I completed the scrap 4-patch yesterday!!!!  I am now contemplating what I am going to do with the back.  The "hurry up and quilt" part of me says to put a simple backing--either white or a print (all from my stash); the "creative" part of me wants to complete a more interesting backing.  I am going to set it aside and decide sense rushing into anything!!--right??

I am now going to tackle the "UF" braid quilt.  Although the fabrics are "unusual" putting them together isn't looking too bad.  It just takes a while to create the "braids" since the rectangles are only 2.5 x 4.5.  It is going to be twin size.  I have found out a pieced quilt for deployed military may not be such a good idea, and so I am going to change and make a fleece blanket instead.  A lot faster and from what I understand, much more practical.  I guess I will use the UF as another TV cuddle quilt.  My family currently sometimes "fight" over the one I have since the loser has to settle for a much smaller, store-bought throw.

It is raining here---a nice steady rain.  I went out yesterday and bought a bolt of Kaufman 200 ct. unbleached muslin and some twin batting.  I also picked up some thread and a magazine.  I had so many coupons I saved $53.00.  Good for me, since I purchased two books on dyeing from Amazon.  I can hardly wait for the warm weather to get started so I can get out and dye!  I really enjoy the process.  This time I am going to venture out and "create" new recipes!  When Diane comes for the Puducah AQS if the weather is nice, I think I will introduce here to dyeing!  Last year ProChemical was there, so hopefully they will this year and I can pick up some more dyes---especially blacks.

Well, enough rambling---I am going to do a little housework, and then get back to "braiding".  Pictures to follow!

Have a great day!!!

BTW--ignore any misspelled words---I still haven't figured out how to do "spell check" :-(

Monday, March 8, 2010


Today was an absolutely beautiful day here in Middle TN.  I should have been outside working in the yard, but instead chose to admire the sunshine from my sewing room.  I will probably get out this week (I am on Spring Break), but I worked on trying to get these quilts finished this week.

My UF quilt.  This is the first two "braids"--I am putting a tea dyed muslin strip between the braids.

The sashing is a very, very light beige Kona---looks almost white.  It will be 7 blocks by 10.  At the very top you can see the top of 3 inch squares and then I will put another border of Kona.  The squares I have had a long time---again, some weird fabrics but okay in this quilt since it is a scrap quilt.

Have a great evening!


Friday, March 5, 2010

No Quilt Pictures!

I have been working dilligently on several projects at once---my 9 patch quilt and the "Ug" quilt--again, instead of working on Peaches and Berries.....but as I said, both of these quilts were UFO's so I still am being productive.  I have decided to donate the "Ug" which I am renaming "UF" for Unusual Fabrics, to a girl I work with for her husband in Iraq.  She tells me that he complains of the cold at night, and says they really don't have enough blankets (which is strange to me) but anyway, I am going to give it to her.  The UF's come from a purchase I got at our Guild auction.  I have over 2,000 2.5 x 4.5 rectangles.  There are dates on some of the bags 1999 so it was done as a millinium swap.  The rules must have been to get the most "unusual" and unattractive fabrics you could.  At any rate, I am putting them into a braid--since I don't have to cut.  The bad thing is they will end up being 3 inch strips---so I am going to put a 3 inch tea dyed muslin between to try to get a twin size quilt.  I will tell  her that when he comes home, he can either bring it or leave it for another, the only rule is he cannot throw it away.  Hopefully it will serve it's purpose and the fact that the fabrics are weird will lose it's importance.

Just to give the blog a little character, I am posting a picture of our "honey bunny" Coal.  Yesterday he will to the beauty shop to get a trim and blow-out.  He is a cutie!  You can't see it very well in the picture but he has on a  kerchief around his neck!

Have a great day!  I am off to work for a meeting ugh!  BTW, does anyone know how to do spellcheck on this new blog entry program?  I can't figure it out, so if I misspell words, please forgive me :-)


Monday, March 1, 2010

What's Next?

I really should be working on something on my "to finish" list, and really I guess this is okay since it is a UFO.  Last year I was a part of the "9 patch " group on Sew Mama (she has since stopped blogging).  The task was to  make 2 (I think) 9-patches a day to ultimately put into a really nice twin size quilt.  Of course, my patches were different since they were scrappy but like  what happens so frequently, I got distracted.  I should have been working on Peaches and Berries, but saw this box of patches.  I had 50 completed, and had planned to do about 100 for a larger quilt (of course).  I had used EQ6 and created some really nice layouts, but have decided to just go ahead and make it like the original---so I made 10 more and have only 10 to go.  I am going to use a very light beige Kona for the sashing.  I feel okay about starting this quilt, since I am actually getting some of these UFO's out of the way.

I have a bit of work to do and then I will get back to sewing this.  I will need to cut some more 2.5 inch squares for the border, but I have a lot of 3.5 inches squares that I purchased in a scrap bag---they are old prints and not very imaginative, but should work in the border.  My goal is to have this quilt completed by the weeks end.  Working on things like this sorta gives me a push---something I can finish quickly--to begin on more tedious projects.

Well, have a great day and remainder of the week!