Sunday, February 28, 2021

Sunday Funday

 I finished quilting two tops yesterday.  That means today is for binding! I love binding.  I am going to sit on the balcony and look at the ocean and sew the day away.   

The sunrise was beautiful today.   Just a peek above the clouds.  
And then just minutes later it was showing its colors.   
Now back to quilts.  Frameshift got little contiguous half melon wedges on the nine patch area, and zig zags surrounded by ribbon candy for the sashing strips.  
Here is the back, a frame around orange and yellow.  
And her is the front.  I think that I have a nice yellow and green stripe for the binding.  I do enjoy striped bindings.  This was from the 2020 RSC.  All of this year's quilts were finished right on time thanks to all that extra time at home from March until July.  

Then the Row by Row Sampler quilt from 2016 got finished right after dinner. I loaded it on the frame sideways and then just quilted each row based on the block pattern.  It went quickly as it isn't a large quilt.  I can't believe that I am just now quilting the 2016 sampler quilt!   It feels good to be clearing up some of the quilting backlog.  No photo of the back of this one as it was quite dark already.  I'll get a final photo after the binding.  I have a dark purple that sort of resembles the hand dyes that will work for this one.  
I'm off for a grocery pickup, but then I will spend some time checking in with Oh Scrap! and Slow Stitching Sunday before the day gets away from me.   

Saturday, February 27, 2021

ScrapHappy Saturday


It is the last yellow Saturday.  I am finishing up my odds and ends this weekend, including an extended time with hexies while on an all day teacher training via ZOOM.  Next month is going to be green!

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Plodding Through

I pieced together all of the extra batting strips to have enough to load the framed nine patches up for quilting.   As soon as it was ready to go, the new roll of batting arrived to our front door, so the next quilt will be easier to prepare.   I think that I have two more rows to go on this one, but it is late for  a school night.  Binding will be a nice project for the weekend.  I have a training session that the state of Florida has mandated for all teachers so that we can be "Mental Health First Aiders". While it is a nice idea to support kids, my mental health will not be improved by spending 6 hours on Saturday on a ZOOM session.   I did finish my mandatory homework though.   There always seems to be something new to add to the list.   

Lacrosse season has started and so we are spending two nights a week at games.   I'm trying to get just a little bit of sewing done on other evenings though.  I got a few hexies sewn while I was doing on online tutoring session Tuesday.   Then I got a few more blocks quilted  tonight while waiting for a batch of cookies to come out of the oven.  Pre-made chocolate chip cookie dough, but still so tasty.     I feel like Monday and Wednesday there were games, and so that is the week so far.    

We sent home another big batch of kids for quarantine on Monday.  It had been so calm for a while that we were all starting to feel like it was a getting better.   My test came back negative though, and Sydney's as well!  Hopefully numbers will continue to decline and we can start to take reclaim little bits of normal.   The sun is just starting to peek over the horizon as I leave for work each morning.  It feels good to watch the days getting longer.  

Saturday, February 20, 2021

ScrapHappy Yellow T Minus 2


Just two more week of yellow.  I hope that you have made a dent.  Sunshine isn't usually a huge color for quilters as it can quickly overwhelm a quilt.  It can also add a bit of happy and we all need more of that at the moment.  I got some of the Garden Lattice blocks done for this month along with just a few more of Shoostars and Sister's Choice.  Now it is mainly an issue of digging through the partially completed crumb blocks to find the rest of the pieces for this months blocks.  There were a surprising number of yellow crumb scraps this month.   

I also got just a few more of the itty bitty loggie blocks done.   It would be nice to round out the orange and yellow rounds.  Green is a bit of a missing link.  I will be sure to fix that when green gets its turn.  

How are your yellow scraps coming along?   I hope that you are able to stay warm wherever you are.   The news in Texas right now is just so disturbing.  One of our guidance counselors was visiting family there last weekend and has been unable to get back to work again.   She sent photos of the snow to us all.  Snow isn't something we really see here.   

Sunday, February 14, 2021

Sunday Progress


I saved out the bigger scraps while ironing some strings for little log cabin blocks.   I will work on those during virtual tutoring from 4 to 5.  I used to have extra help available during our lunch hour at school, but we have three lunches now and so we have been having online sessions on Sundays instead.  There is no way to know how many people there will be, or when they will come, so having something nearby will help pass the time if there are lags.  

My main goal today was to finish this quilt for Kurt's friend from work.   It took most of the afternoon yesterday and 37 flights of stairs to get everything assembled and ready to go.  By that time I was too tired to quilt!
So first thing this morning I decided to jump in.   I was about halfway done when my top thread ran out!  Well that put a bit of a damper on things.  I had another spool which was the same color, but it was much thicker and didn't tension the same.   I have a line of quilts ready to go, but I'll have to find the right thread first.  Joann's was out, but they have a truck coming tomorrow.   I have a spool ordered online, so we will have to see which works out first.   I hope you are having a restful or productive Sunday.  Having both never seems to work out, but if you have any scrappy or hand stitching to share, but sure to check out Oh Scrap! and Slow Stitching Sunday.  

Saturday, February 13, 2021

ScrapHappy Saturday - Sunshine and Happy


Welcome to the weekly linky party for those using their scraps, one color at a time. This is the yellow month, and I hope that you are enjoying a little sunshine and cheer.
The weather has suddenly turned glorious here, so I think it will be busy at the beach.  We got in our walk this morning, but will avoid the crowds the rest of the day.  Kurt is going to help me set up the quilting machine this morning and then I will be sewing the day away.   I ordered a big roll of batting, but I think there is enough to keep me busy until it gets here.  If desperation sets in, I an always piece together enough scraps for at least one or two quilts.  


Friday, February 12, 2021

A Plan for the Crumbs!


I started framing out the yellow crumb blocks with white and black borders.   The blocks are 4 inches, and the frames are 1.5.    The end result is a 6 inch framed block.   Each row is separated with strips of the opposite color which should visually link the alternating rows.  I grabbed a couple of pink blocks as well to see the combination.  I will need some half blocks for the offset rows, but I think I am enjoying how this will come together.  I'll do some math and then make decisions about how many blocks to make each month.   There are still some yellow crumb chunks hanging out in the strings, but I started to sort through it all last night and had a little ironing party while I was listening to an audio book.  I'm thinking of calling this Interlinked.
Our bathroom tile has started to come together.  I convinced Kurt to hire a contractor, which is really hard for him to do.  He has been super busy at work though, and the remodel we wanted to do was beyond our skill level.   So far Dave has had to build up the floor and level it under where the jacuzzi tub used to be and then replace all the backerboard with waterproof versions.  He took out the raised box that used to hold the shower and moved the shower plumbing to remove a wall.  He made the nook and installed the smart shower control unit.   
It is starting to feel like spring here.  After several chilly weeks, it is so nice to enjoy fresh air and sunshine again.   

Thursday, February 11, 2021

Slowly Comes the Sunshine

I am steadily adding yellow to the design wall.  The Sister's Choice blocks are leaders and enders.  I think the last two are somewhere in the mix.   I'll shift to Shoostar blocks when those are done.   I've got almost enough yellows pulled and cut for the Garden Trellis blocks.   I'm having trouble mixing the buttery yellows with the brights with the golds.   So that it forcing me to segregate colors together which is making me dig deeper into the scrap bins.   Speaking of digging into the scrap bins.  There were large chunks of crumb fabric all mixed in with the yellow strings.  I've trimmed those up to 4 inches and added them to the wall.  I really should decide on a layout and sashing ideas before I get too much further.  I was thinking about a black border all the way around and then an interrupted white stripe to separate those.  I found an idea on Pinterest, but now can't find it to save my life.  I also saw one called Chain Link on Connecting Threads though, and that would be super cute.    If I just frame half of the blocks out in black and half in white, the rest should be easy to recreate later.   

February is always such a long month at school.  The Christmas excitement has passed and it is still a long way to spring break.  We usually have a day off for Presidents day, and that would have made the upcoming weekend 3 days, but they have taken it back for COVID and we are all missing it right now. We had bunches of quarantined students return in the last few days, so I think my classrooms will get pretty full again.   Every day is full of surprises right now and students seem to show up randomly on line or at school.  I am just thankful that they are showing up though!   I know it has been hard on all of us.     

Wednesday, February 10, 2021

Little Loggies

 I pulled out the these mini log cabin blocks yesterday to add a few more yellows to the mix.  Each block finishes at 2.5 inches and has 13 pieces.  This one is absolutely what could best be described as a long term project.   All People Quilt shows 30 different layouts, but without the traditional names.  Quilt Social has the traditional names for the more basic arrangements.   The Spruce Crafts also has a nice show of different layouts in actual quilts. I started with the idea of Sunshine and Shadows, but now I am pondering a nice Barn Raising design, or perhaps a Spiral.   Any design that could be achieved with half square triangle blocks, could also happen with log cabin blocks.  Coffee Rings Studio has a nice post with HST layout ideas.   Those asymmetrical diamonds are pretty close to what was swirling through my mind in the wee hours of the morning.   
There is still plenty of time to continue to ponder that decision.  I don't think I have enough of any one color to worry yet about how many I will need.  Still time in February for a few more yellows.  I found lots of great partial crumb blocks hiding in the string bin, so it will be fun to add those to the wall as well.   

Tuesday, February 9, 2021

Backings Again

Backings are hard for a scrap quilter.  I just don't keep large quantities of fabric on hand anymore.   I had several chunks I wanted to move out, so I started there.   Blue is always nice, and I had one fabric with both blue and orange, so I decided to go with a two color back.  More blue than orange, but all happy to be out of the stash and living in a quilt!   
Here is the quilt that goes with that back, another version on 9 Carat Diamonds.  It was initially inspired by Well Suited from Cyndi at Quilting is more Fun than Housework.  Hers uses 2.5 inch squares for the nine patches though, and mine are 2 inches.   Cyndi hosts Oh Scrap! on Sundays which is always a nice follow up to ScrapHappy Saturday.  I added a 2.5 inch black border all the way around, and now I think I might need just a bit more backing fabric for comfort.

Sunday, February 7, 2021

Superbowl Sunday


We were lucky to get in our morning walk before the rain started this morning.  It is really pouring now!   I hope it has moved out of Tampa ahead of the big game tonight.  
I don't really follow sports all that much, but I have some hand quilting to enjoy during the game and we are having appetizers for dinner while enjoying the commercials as a family.  I finished the December block during some family TV time last night and decided on half circles for the border.  I'm still trying to decide whether the circles will be a single or double row.  Plenty of time for those decisions.  I think I still have three more months to finish before the border becomes top priority.  

Yesterday I worked on pieced backings.   This was the challenge quilt for RSC in 2016.  It has been done since then, but just sat waiting for its turn on  the quilting machine.  I added a thin grey border, more for ease of quilting than for aesthetics.  

Then I found some extra hand dyed fabric and used it to spice up the backing.   
Frameshift was next on the list.  It was from the RSC in 202, and I got some fabrics last week to put together a backing.  I just don't have any large quantities of fabric on hand these days, so backings is a good excuse for necessary shopping.  

The floral is heavy on pinks and limes, but I am trying to enhance my scrap stash in the areas of yellow and orange, so I got some of those instead.  So now I've got two more quilts ready to go the next time I set up the quilting frame.  I've got a quilt that I said I'd finish for a coworker of my husband, so I'd like to get several quilts finished while the frame is assembled.  

What are your plans for today?  I'm off to check out slow stitching Sunday with Kathy and Oh Scrap! with Cynthia before I see if there is enough yardage squirreled away somewhere for another backing. Then there is laundry, an online tutoring session and a grocery pickup.   

Saturday, February 6, 2021

ScrapHappy Sunshine Day

Some yellow blocks happened this week.  I don't have nearly as much yellow as pink, so there won't be quite the same level of variety going on.   I had to buy some fabric for backings and picked yellows and oranges hoping to fill out the scrap stash with the extras.  
The farmers wife blocks were a failed quilt along from long ago.   If I just make three more I could have a small 4 by 5 quilt.  OR I could throw out one block and make it a 4 by 4.   I've been on a quest lately to finish things off. This has led to digging deep through bags and boxes of this and that seeing what I could take care of.   Honestly, the limiting factor right now is quilting.  The longarm does not stay set up in the new house at the moment, so finished quilts happen in spurts.   All good though, all of those lovely flimsies will get a turn at some point.  Until then, there still seem to be plenty of hidden surprises to find.  

Monday, February 1, 2021

Another Quotation Option for February Full Stop

My original start on quotation marks was a combination of a 2.5 inch square with a 2.5 inch half square triangle.  From there, I went for a simplified but somewhat stylized version with only two pieces and one seam.  There was another way I could have gone though, and it has been pulling at my mind.  This version has more shape and finesse, but of course, more pieces and seams.   To make a curvier  quotation you will need:

  • 2.5 inch squares in yellow - 2 of these
  • 2.5 inch square in background - 1 of these
  • 2 inch squares in background - 2 of these

Start with the 2.5 inch square of background fabric.  Cut it into quarters, each of which will be 1.25 inches square.   Toss one tiny square away or save it for now.  You will only need three for each quotation mark.  
Now use a pencil to draw a line from corner to corner on each of the 5 background colored squares.   
Three of them will go on three corners of one of the yellow squares.  You will sew on each drawn line.  If you are in a rush, it is easy to just sew around the square from one to the next by pivoting at each center point.   The 2 inch square will go on one corner of the other yellow square.  
The last 2 inch square will go on the opposite corner of the same square.  
Now just flip open all of those little flaps and iron them flat.   Trim the squares to make sure they are nice and even, and then trim the waste triangles from behind.  
The same units can be arranged facing right or left.   Sew these two subunits together
Each single set of quotes will get a left and a right.   Quotation marks usually come in pairs, so it will take 4 subunits for each set.  

I didn't make quite that many as I was just playing with the pattern, but here is a single pair of quotations on the design wall with the simple HST version and the simpler still final version I decided to go with.  

Each version has its own pluses and minuses.  Which one do you prefer?   

Dear Jane Flimsy

I started this top in 2013.  Most of the blocks were done by the end of that year, but those border triangles got the better of me.   The corners are still a bit wonky, but here is the finished flimsy for Dear Jane.  It has a rainbow layout of course in an around the world layout.   

February Full Stop - Quotations

Quotation marks are used to identify direct spoken words of any individual.   They appear at the beginning and end of the attributed words, and therefore must generally be used in pairs.  They may also be used to mark the titles of certain short compositions, or to indicate "words used as words".  This use of "air quotes"  has become a popular way to delegitimize a word.  Imagine that your meal was cooked by a "professional" chef.  

These units may be made from 2.5 inch squares and half square triangles.  That is the way that I made them initially, but after seeing the finished block, I decided that I would make them with fewer seam allowances.  There is a bit more waste this way, but it is a good tradeoff for one less seam.  

For each pair of quotes, you will need: 

  •  4 rectangles of yellow fabric, each cut 4.5 by 2.5 inches. 
  • 4 squares of background fabric cut to 2.5 inches.   

Layer the squares on top of the rectangles, lined up with the bottom edge.  You will need to draw a line in pencil diagonally from corner to corner on the background square.   Notice that two of the lines angle up from left to right and two angle down.   

Next, sew along the drawn line on each of the 4 units.   

Flip these triangles down toward the corner and press.  Make sure the edges line up nicely before trimming away the waste triangles behind the block.   
Now just add a few dividing strips from background fabric.  The two small segments are cut 1.5 by 4.5 and the wide bit between the two pairs is 2.5 by 4.5 inches.   Now you have one pair of quotation marks.   
I made 4 pairs of quotation marks, although I'm wondering now if that is too many.  Sewed all together, that makes the rom 58 inches wide, which is pretty close to my target width of 64 inches for the finished quilt.  It is a simple row though, so I think the length will work out well.  Especially given that the lighter shades are not likely to overwhelm the quilt.   Here is Lizzie inspecting the two finished rows so far.  She seems to approve.   
I'll be back tomorrow with another version of the same block, with more seams, but more shape as well.  It is a trade off of course, depending on how complicated you are feeling.