Saturday, March 21, 2015

Hotel Sewing?

Binding finished!

I guess this qualifies as hotel sewing.

While we are attending classes with Edyta Sitar I have been too exhausted to do any machine sewing after class is over.  The energy I have been able to muster up has been used for handwork.

Since I have been using this quilt as my chair pillow, it has been coming to class with me each day.  So each day I have stitched a bit on the binding.

Tonight it needed to be finished!

And so it was...

Hotel sewing comes in all sizes and activities

Happy Spring and Happy National Quilting Day!

Friday, March 20, 2015

Slow and Steady in Bedford, PA

Mary and I spent the day with Edyta Sitar of Laundry Basket Quilts working on blocks for her quilt called "Slow and Steady".  By the way, that is how one needs to approach the blocks for this quilt, slow and steady, as Edyta was continually saying.

Behind us is the quilt called "Slow and Steady".
It is a snail's trail pattern and is classified as an intermediate quilt.  It uses lots of little strips and squares and could put a dent in the scrap bag.

I was able to complete 9 blocks today as well as cutting out several of the 60 degree background triangles.

The center four patch measures an inch and a half!

133 more little blocks to go!

Look for more info on this quilt and others by Edyta in her book called "Handfuls of Scraps Pieced into Amazing Quilts".

Tonight is Edyta's lecture, tomorrow is "Dresden Bloom", a stand alone pattern, and Sunday is "Basket of Scraps", also from the book mentioned above.

Can't wait!

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

March 11 and 57 degrees

The warmest day since mid January or maybe even December of last year.
Can winter and snow be finally over?

Once again, I am sitting in the living room looking out the window towards the deck and the chair that is waiting for me and warmer days.

The snow has decreased significantly in just 24 hours due to warm temperatures and the rain we had overnight.  With the blue skies and lots of sunlight things are looking up in the weather department.

Not so much in the sewing department!

A binding in progress

A few blocks sewn

I suppose a girl can't complain, especially when she has time to bind, sew, gaze out the window and simply enjoy life.

Hope you are enjoying your Wednesday!

Thursday, March 5, 2015

More Snow and a Stay at Home to Sew Day!

Yep, more snow.

What was originally advertised to be 1 to 3 inches, is now being advertised to be 5 to 7 inches (oops! They just changed it to 5 to 8 inches) just south of here and looks like we, already at noon, have about 5 inches. It is supposed to continue snowing until this evening.

Hmm, 5 or six hours from now at about 1/4 to 1/2 inch per hour equals....
One to three more inches???

Gotta love that modern math of the weather forecasting world!

But inside it is toasty and warm and a great day for sewing!

I am finishing the rows of this previously webbed Fat Quarter Quilt.  I am loving the orange, green and teal look of this quilt top.

Love the inspirational border print also.

I have had this print in my stash for awhile.  I think I originally bought it to be a backing but I could never bring myself to use it that way.  Now I am happy I waited.  With the new basics line available at the shop, I finally found the fat quarters needed to make another Fat Quarter Quilt.

Lookin' good and I hope to finish the top this afternoon.  Let's see how I do?

Happy snow day on March 5th!

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Fun with Fat Quarters

Over the years I have made numerous quilts of the type that I call my Fat Quarter Quilts.  The quilt pattern is based on one found in M'Liss Rae Hawley's 1999 book called Fat Quarter Quilts.  In it are several patterns but one, Mystery Quilt, has always resonated with me.

What appeals has always been the fact that you can use anywhere from 5 or more fat quarters with one 2 yard minimum focus fabric and 1 yard minimum background fabric.  It can be one background fabric or more.  The focus fabric can be a floral print, a batik, a border print, a directional print as long as it is a fabric that serves to stimulate your creative fabric choice juices in terms of choosing fat quarters.

In making the units of this quilt, you work with the fabric you have to make 5 inch blocks.  They are triple rail, four patch, nine patch, half square triangles and a double four patch. Any fabric will do for each element, but I usually choose a strong color for the double four patch.  I like the way it can produce a strong visual line in the finished top.


The above example uses multiple background fabrics rather than one piece of yardage.

Your cutting skills can be challenged to make accurate cuts that measure 5 3/8 inches, 2 3/4 inches, 2 inches, and 1 5/8 inches.

You need to sew an accurate 1/4 inch seam.

And you need to design out of your comfort zone.

I have a quilty friend who absolutely cringes when she sees these quilt tops.  They are too random for her and play havoc with her sense of balance and symmetry.  She can make the various elements, but she needs to put the quilt into one that is more traditional and not so random.

These quilts are still a challenge for me. I find immense satisfaction in producing a quilt top that uses what I have in my fabric stash and allows me to produce a quilt that can be pleasing to the eye but uses a different approach to design.

Fun with Fat Quarters or Designing out of Your Comfort Zone is a fun and different way to approach your stash and make a quilt that is uniquely yours.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Update on Student Quilts

Open Sew days have been busy in the classroom at "Piecing with Poppers Quilting Center" in spite of the weather and in spite of the sidewalk heaving and the door not opening as a result.  Through it all we have had great parking so the students have been coming to sew.

Some of the now finished tops include the following...

Marie's modified Chinese coins quilt top.  This used almost two complete jelly rolls and additional yardage (approximately 3 yards) for the sashing, borders and binding.  It is displayed sideways on the design wall since the design wall is not wide enough to pin up the top as it will display on a bed.  You can tilt your head sideways to get the correct view!

Carol's blue and white Jacob's Ladder quilt.  She used one jelly roll each of blue solid and white from the Moda Bella Solids line that Sharon is carrying in the shop.  It is a 20 block quilt and is destined for the football field this fall as a lap quilt for her cheerleading granddaughter.

Dottie is machine quilting her Bargello quilt.  She is using a combination of free motion and quilting in the ditch on this quilt.  All quilting is being done on her domestic machine using either the darning foot or the walking foot. She is doing a great job on this, her first machine quilting project!

I have been busy working on this Maze Quilt which is a free pattern I found on line at the Windham Fabrics website.  I am using several charm packets from Quilting Treasures, called Lola Textures and Ombré Dots for the squares as well as a darker blue Moda Marble for the sashing and borders.  All of these products can be found at the shop also.  Although there is a charm packet that I picked up elsewhere recently (and I can't remember where!) also included in the mix.  Unfortunately no stash busting on this project!  The backing will have to take care of that requirement. There are borders still to be applied before it can be declared done, but the bulk of the top is now completed.

There are lots of other projects going on during Open Sew classes. Why not stop by some time and see for yourself?

Join us for an Open Sew session at the classroom at Piecing with Poppers Quilting Center.

Enjoy your Tuesday!  Get your errands done this morning so you can sew this afternoon.  I hear it is going to snow later today, AGAIN!

Monday, March 2, 2015

Seasons on the Deck - March 2, 2015

It has been awhile since I did a "Seasons on the Deck" installment, so I thought why not now?

Just now from inside the house,

Last week from inside the house

March 2, 2013 - where's the snow?

April 22, 2014

I know April 22 is still a month and a half from today, but somehow I don't think all of this snow will be gone by then. 

Let's see what happens.