Tuesday, October 06, 2015

Guild presentation

What was I thinking?!  I volunteered to do a presentation at my guild on "things you still have time to make before Christmas."

Almost all were freebie patterns/idea from either facebook or blogs.  I stayed away from bags or tablerunners since we have done those "to death!"  Plus they always take longer to make than the pattern claims...sort of like the chocolate chip cookie package recipe that says it will make 4 dozen cookies...in what universe!!

Anyway...I digress...so here are a few of the things I showed along with some tips I learned while making them...

First, this super easy pin cuff.  Since I know a lot of you also collect shirts and cut them up a-la-Bonnie you may also feel a bit guilty about tossing the cuffs.  Well, attache a bit of wool and a bit of magnet and you have a pin cuff!  (decorative stitching is optional!)The longest part of this project is waiting for the glue under the magnet to dry!

Next I showed a few of the mug heat cuffs...you can use a shirt cuff for this too.  A men's extra large is perfect for a Dunkin Donut's medium cup!

Wrapping a bit of felted tartan with a safety pin around the office white mug helps keep tabs on your mug - a mug kilt if you may!

More using of recycled shirts...a sewing machine cover.

This one I gave to my friend Tari and she nicely loaned it back for the meeting!  My "cheater" on this was using some of the pre-quilted fabric for the inside which was quick and gave it a lot of body.  Since I had a big box of 2-1/2 inch squares this only took a day to make.

Most of you may have seen this leaf potholder around the internet.  I unfortunately gave the pattern away last night so I don't have the pattern designers name.

 I used a layer of Insul-Bright and a layer of cotton batting.  I do that now when ever I make a potholder or table-runner.  (warning Insul-bright cannot be used in a microwave.)  Again this was a quick project since I have lots of strips around the sewing room and even enough left-over binding for a whole tree of these!

Also showed a pillow made using a vintage quilt block with some new embroidery and hand quilting.

This was a great take-along project. Think I did most of this in the doctor's waiting room!

I did show one bag...this one is made from a pair of men's chinos.

Some in-process name tags...

And then I made a casserole carrier...not a really quick project but can be done in a day.

It just takes a 20-inch quilted square with two short straps and one long one.

Well, back to binding quilts for the show!

Saturday, October 03, 2015

A finish! Phew!

Watson inspecting my work....great, now I have to check for pet hair again!

Now the pressure is on...only a month until my guild show!  So I am happy to report I finished a quilt!   This is a final finish - binding, sleeve and label!  Whoo-hoo happy dance!  (only four more to go!)

They are all "almost" done.  This is the problem with having so many UFO's...it takes longer to finish anything since quilting time is spread over so many projects!

Yesterday I put an old CD on - a workout tape from the 80's - and I got lots done!  I made miles and miles of binding.  Think got caught up in Blondi and Pat Benetar beats!  I also made several yards of sleeves...easier to do this in big batches!

All this puts me closer to the goal.  Want to have the binding sewn down on the King size quilt by tonight so I can sew on it during the Sunday morning news shows.

Also, I am going to a quilt retreat next weekend.  For me this is a "finish-it" retreat.  Though if I can get some of my projects done before Thursday I may allow myself to start on one of the three baby quilts I need to make for nephews who are expecting!

And a brief ad...my friend Sue is fostering these two kittens.  The little female was shot with a bb-gun and has a broken leg.  When Sue brought her home the larger male kitten immediately bonded with her.  Now Sue needs to find a home for them together!  She is hoping the Kaffee background will bring good luck!

Thursday, October 01, 2015

October! My favorite month!

“Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.” 

I love fall...and October is my favorite fall month!  So I am excited this morning!

I already have done some of my favorite fall things...picked apples, bought a pumpkin, put Mums by the front door, and changed out the door decorations to include a grapevine wreath and leaves!

The weather is cooler so I can work out in the garden and throw the windows open to air out the house.  Purge all that processed air-conditioned air!
This quilt is getting a woodgrain fabric binding...
And no surprise I my love of autumn also shows up in my quilting!  The two quilts I am binding right now (ok one I am making the binding for and the other I am auditioning fabric to decide on binding...) are both autumn themed.
dark green gingham option
striped option....
I always struggle with binding decisions...maybe that is why it takes me so long to do that final step in a quilt.

Both of these quilts are going to be in my guild's show...so really need to get a move on!

Sunday, September 27, 2015

A bit of handquilting...

I'm trying to finish up a little "doll" quilt/miniature in time for the quilt show.  I love hand-quilting but the large quilts (like my Charleston Baskets) is a multi-year project!

I do find it interesting that while quilting it always looks better on the back...where you don't see the blue marker!

When it gets a soaking it will all go away until then I admire the wrong side of the quilt!

I was so excited to find the book from the Red and White exhibit waiting for me when I got home from Boston last week.  I had forgotten I pre-ordered it months ago!  This is a big, heavy book...not one to  read late at night in bed!  If you fall asleep it could fall over and break something!

This is what is up on my design wall right now.  I've been known to make special snacks for political debate nights (a bit of a political policy wonk) but this is as far as I let politics get into my quilting "zone!"  Though my husband says it isn't really fair and balance since the donkey is larger than the elephant...really, no political comment intended.  It just takes more blocks to make a donkey!

And yes, my sewing space is still in upheaval...lots of piles and still not enough space!  Well, if I just wiggle things a bit there is space...and if I just finish a few more of these tops!

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Finally...I'm back!

After a tough summer I'm finally back!

It was a bad MS summer but I am recovering and getting back to quilting and blogging and all the other things I've missed doing!
Dobby is doing well and guarding the quilts!

So it shouldn't be any surprise that I am scrambling to finish some quilts for my quilt show this November!
Watson demanding face time with a vintage quilt top!

I committed to three entries but may try to finish two more...will know tomorrow afternoon if I can manage it!

I'm also still working on organizing my sewing room...still don't have it "right!"  One more big move and that will be it for awhile...need to spend more time sewing fabric than folding and moving fabric!

Scituate lighthouse, Sep 2015

Saturday, August 08, 2015

It is still summer...

I know I fell off the blog radar again.  Let's just say the hot weather this summer is kicking my you-know-what...

So I'm spending this hot Saturday picking paper off the back of my guild's next donation quilt.  Money raised from this quilt goes to Camp Rainbow, a camp for children with cancer.

About 30 guild members worked on the quilt.  Thursday my friend Tari and I made the last push to get the rows sewn together.  Phew.  The top needs to be ready for the long-arm quilter on Monday so it can go to another member to be bound because it has to be ready for our show in November...ya, there's a deadline.

My garden has been neglected badly this year.  Amazingly I am getting more tomatoes and basil than I ever have when I actually worked at it!

I also have a mystery squash growing down near the compost pile.  Bonus!

Watson does love it when I come out into his yard...not happening a lot!

That is all for now...need to get some more paper picking done...then maybe I can move on to binding a quilt of my own!

Wednesday, July 08, 2015

Today was a pretty emotional day.

Ninety quilts were delivered to vets at the VA Hospital here in Augusta.  These were vets in long term care.  Most seemed to be from the Korea/Vietnam ere through there were a few WWII vets hanging on and unfortunately a few from more recent conflicts.

The guild put together these quilts in 4-1/2 months.  That is a lot of fast stitching!

RJ from a local machine and vacuum shop quilted this top that I had made with other quilters.  It was his first time quilting so I think it was extra special for him to present the quilt!

There were many watery-eye moments.  Regulations did not allow for photos to be taken on the care floors...just take my word that there were lots of smiles!