Thursday, February 11, 2016

Donation Quilt

At our most recent All Day Sew, we had agreed to make donation quilts for local purposes.  These blocks are so easy - 2 1/2 in strips of lights and dark kid-themed fabrics.  Being enthusiastic, I made many more blocks than necessary.  At first I set them all jumbled up -- not good! -- neat rows are better this time.  This is an "Hourglass" block.   
Here is the back, with 5 extra blocks.  I used what I had for the crosswise strips, cutting them in equal size strips for some visual continuity.  Don't you just LOVE the surprise when you a quilt over to find something unexpected?

Recent days have been very warm - our snow is melting, but this pile is still huge.  As I leaned over to straighten the quilt - kersplat - I hadn't noticed the ice at snow edge.  No damage, I just felt silly and lucky. 

I machine quilt my own projects on a 10 year old Janome MC 6500. 

Monday, February 08, 2016

I tried a new thead for machine quilting

I've had this thread for some time, never having the "nerve" to try something new, but today I have a cute donation quilt and nothing else was the right color.  I always use a King Tut, or another quality thread for MQ'ing - time to try this less expensive thread in this taupe color. 
Wow - it quilts like buttah!!!!  I LOVE it.  Even the color was excellent for this quilt of many colors.  I will order more from Connecting Threads.  It did break 2 times, both times when going over multiple seams.  Perhaps I should have slowed down. 

I have a little plastic insert that fits halfway up, inside the thread cone, a do-jiggy, or perhaps you call it a thing-a-ma-bob, and the machine spindle fits inside the do-jiggy.  Works for me! 
LOL  My previous post was about "try it, you might like it"!  A joke on myself. 

Thursday, February 04, 2016

"Try it, you might like it!"

Remember when you didn't want to try some new, "suspicious" food, something your mother had just made and you balked at trying it?  And she would say "Try it, you might like it!"    Many quilters avoid a Pineapple because earlier experiences didn't work well, or you used the paper piecing, not always a favorite, or you had issues with the bias, but --- I had NO problems with this project, probably due to the excellent pineapple ruler I used AND the DVD I purchased thru Annies Craft Catalog, by Gyleen Fitzgerald of   I tried it and I LIKED it! 

Tuesday, February 02, 2016

NQR -- Vacker Vinter Bat -- Other Side of our Studio

"Beautiful Winter Boat" - That title is Swedish (no umlaut on my keyboard over the "a").  The other name for the boat is "Luuckintuse" ... no correct spelling known.

According to my Swedish Father, Luuckintuse was a creature who lived under bridges and came out to "get" bad children.  Over the years it became a threat word for anyone in the family, adults too, who misbehaved, lost their temper, swore.   We think a Luuckintuse was something like a "Troll" - never sure.  They would come out from under bridges, grab bad children, and only let them loose if church bells rang.  (I bet I have that description messed up!) 

This is a current, finished project of DH.  I made the sail, which developed some crookedness after I broke one of the lines a few minutes ago, while cleaning off the table, so we could take photos! 


What would we do without our hobbies? 

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Pineapple border, machine quilting, and a few little quilts

Border possibilities - Piano Key?  uh, nope, I like this one.
 I basted this in the house - it's about 63" x 63" -- sorta do-able on my sewing table.

And this morning ... ta dahhhhh!  I am so excited to begin the machine quilting - my favorite part!!!  I started with a Schmetz 14 quilting needle, but right away, it skipped, so I changed to a Schmetz 14 topstitch and voila.  Happiness!  This is an allover, kinda lighthearted in feeling, center is a swirl with a posy and then an echo around the posy.  This was inspired by Christina Cameli, in her recent MQ book.   LOT of seams, my machine goes thru them.  (Janome MC 6500, no stitch regulator). 

 Here is the top quilting thread - a King Tut variegated.
Here is the backing I found, on sale - Yeahhhh Pats Creative Stitchery!!!  Back thread is white. 

New subject - these are 2 little quilts I made starting with 9-patches, cutting the 9-patches, and rearranging the pieces.  For whatever reason, I have always LOVED making blocks and then re-cutting them.  They are too small for Linus quilts so I just look at them!  8-))) I call them 9-Patch Puzzle.

Friday, January 22, 2016

A friend saves vintage blocks, and a Pineapple Beginning

What a great way to start the day - aren't they beautiful?  Look at the giant white ones in the middle!   

In mid-November at the Guild give-away table, sat a large stack of vintage blocks.  Kinda sad and not well done but .... I grabbed them, shoved them in my friend Jody's hands and said, "Here make something of these!"  Poor woman - I didn't even give her a chance to object but she's creative, energetic and gets things D O N E !  Hmm, lots of piecing, by hand, not sophisticated, yet beautiful in their humility.   Some lady was using her time wisely, using what she had.  There is even some fussy-cutting. 

In mid December, (yes, less than 1 month later) Jody dropped by my house with a big wrapped "something" under her arm with instructions "do not open 'til Christmas" ... well of course I failed that edict.  After she left, I opened it ... and cried with joy. 

Look what she did with the "unloved" blocks!!!  She repaired some, added the inner black sashing, added the dark border purchased when she and I had attended some quilting function together.  She often finishes her quilts with a sliver of color against the binding.  She then washed it all, and those blah, tired-looking blocks turned into something beautiful!!!   Quilters make and give quilts away - we seldom receive a quilt, especially one with meaning.  How lovely  that she gave these blocks a real life.  It's prettier than this photo, and is now my TV-watching lap quilt.

  Above is the backing - perfectly lovely!  Thank you Jody!!!

New project ....

a Pineapple Quilt, using 2 slightly different blocks.  I'm loving it!  This design came with a DVD purchased thru Annie's Catalog/Craft catalog, and the DVD features Gyleen Fitzgerald.  (I LOVE my quilting DVDs!)  Oh My Gosh, I am loving this one!!!  I DID purchase her ruler  (about $14) which I also love.  Each block came out exactly correct, square and true.  (There is another ruler at Annies, but with more lines, options, cost - I chose the simpler version)..

If you have never made a Pineapple block, and are not paper piecing, you really need a ruler made for this technique.  The block is very easily pulled out of square and is trimmed and checked after each round.  These strips are cut at 1.5 inch, and the block finishes at 8 inches.  Also, her technique trims the blocks from the back.