29 August 2018

Wall Hanging Finish & Week 3 Stars QAL

I'm completely done with the Christmas wall-hanging kit.
Even though "Christmas Postcards" is only 31x42,
I decided to go ahead and quilt it with the long arm.
What a good way to try out my holly pantograph—
and I think that turned out to be a great choice!

I had a perfect scrap of batting and a perfect Christmas fabric
on hand for the back--too happy to move both of those out.
This small quilt will be donated to a church fundraising event.
I hope to be making several table runners and maybe even a
regular quilt for this event over the next month or so.

The week 3 blocks for the Seeing Stars QAL came out
this morning so of course I jumped right on that
and have them all ready for posting this evening.

This is a stash-only quilt for me but I'm kind of amazed
that my once-large stash (by my standards) of fall fabrics
has dwindled to the point that it's becoming a bit of a challenge to
make my choices for the blocks.  It has been a few years since I've
allowed myself to buy fall fabrics on the Shop Hop but this
October I'll be keeping my eyes out for them once again.

Tomorrow it'll be back to working on the mini blocks.
Happy quilting!

27 August 2018

A Quick Christmas Quilt

I never rarely buy kits but the shop's sample was pretty and the
clearance price even better.  I put it away for about a year but
I needed just such a small project this weekend so out it came.

Oh alright, truthfully I brought it out months ago hoping I'd
get to it...but didn't.  It happens.
Let's just focus on the finish here, ok?


It's not quite finished but it's all ready for quilting tomorrow.
The kit included all the fabric for the top along with the book
Three Times the Charm in which this pattern can be found.
Wonderfully, this used up every single charm in the pack.
No left-overs!

I really enjoy picking out fabrics for projects which is why
I avoid kits but sometimes it sure is nice to have a no-brainer
in one's closet (or sitting out) on hand for some mindless sewing.

That being said, sometimes when making a specifically 
requested quilt, it can be easier for them to just pick an
entire line of fabrics.  I know it can be overwhelming to someone
who has no experience in quilting--and to some who do quilt!

Anyone see where I'm going with this?
Yep, another project is added to the list.

Floral Hues -- Sue Daley Designs

I'm sure it looks like I'm going a little crazy with the projects here
but I feel completely in check (no snickering or knowing looks!) so
I had no guilt ordering this fat quarter set for a queen size quilt I'll be
making for my second daughter.  It should arrive tomorrow.

In looking through the pattern, I realize this one isn't going to be
in the "quick and easy" category but that will be okay.  I plan to
start it this winter after the holiday chaos.  

I also had planned another count on the mini's but I forgot
to grab a pic and it's late so we'll save that for next time.

Happy quilting!

23 August 2018

Week 2 QAL Stars, More Vintage Mini's

It's butterfly season.
I've been watching a particular chrysalis on our window screen,
hoping I'd catch its "birthday"--and today was the day!

They love my herbs, veggies and butterfly plants.
I have plenty to share so no worries when an entire
dill or parsley plant gets devoured in a day!

With the beautiful rains and temps, who wouldn't want to
be outside enjoying things like butterflies and herbs?
Unless there's quilting to do.

I did spend some time indoors working on the Week 2 star blocks
for the Seeing Stars QAL but I took them outside for pics.

A little extra time and patience was required for the curves but I was still
able to finish them up today--and it's only day two of Week 2.
Yep.  Killin' it.

I also popped out 12 more of my mini's to add to the pile.


Butterflies aren't the only thing growing around here!

Added in with these I'm now at 36.
Working about 12 a day should see me at the end of this one
sometime in the next week or two, unless I decide to keep going.
I find myself all caught up once more and tomorrow
is a mostly-open day...and there again is the nagging of that
Farmer's Wife quilt.  I know--I've been talking about it for
what?  Two years?  I even have all the fabric!
What is stopping me?!?

Linking up to Happy Quilting "Seeing Stars QAL".

21 August 2018

Mini-Blocks to Distraction

More than one friend has told me recently:
"At least you have your quilting!"
After years of having children to take care of,
many of us are now very close to or at the empty nest time of life.
With our 4, we've had children at home for 25 years, and many
of our friends have been blessed with even more kids for more years.
Now we all just have some adjusting to do.  Everyone in her own way.

So yes, thank goodness for my quilting.
Maybe I can even do some recruiting?!

Maybe this isn't the best way to lure in new quilters
(okay, you just never know!)
but I wanted to give an update on my work with the tiny blocks.

(Loving the black ones!)

Having completed 24, I think it's time for a little break.
Tomorrow I'll be hitting the gym for the first time in
months  years  heck, I'm not sure--a good long time!
But after that I'll be joining along with others for our second set
of stars in the QAL.
We have had the a/c off and the windows open for the last
several days; rain is predicted for tomorrow with a high of 71'!
So perfect for quilting...so not like August.
Can we just please have this and skip that whole Indian Summer thing?

17 August 2018

Scrappy "Mini"

I'm starting a project I've had on my Pinterest list for a few years.
Last Christmas, I received the book with this project in it
so it was a sign, right?

From Civil War Legacies by Carol Jenkins

Now here's one of those silly little details that aren't always apparent:
this quilt is tiny...as in 3" blocks.  The finish is 28"x36".

But after I thought about it a second I realized:

~ I've been wanting to do something small-scale
~ It would be a great side-project with my BOM & QAL
~ Easy to take to a friend's house for a quilting day
(a rare thing but we're hoping to squeeze one in very soon.)

After going through my scraps and then my stash, I ended up
cutting out at least triple what the directions call for.
And that's just my beginning.
I don't plan on making a full-sized quilt of 3" blocks but who knows?

I'm just going to see where this one goes.

16 August 2018

Creighton Quilt Complete, Star QAL Begins!

The college quilt is now completely quilted, bound and labeled.

This quilting design took a little to get used to but I found it
to be fun and it was definitely a good choice for this quilt.

So, with my monthly banners and BOM all caught up
and the college quilt completed,
I am guilt-free all set to start in on some new projects.
Last year at this time, still weeks before kickoff, I was putting
all of my effort into helping out with football.  Right up to that
final glorious win at State, football consumed almost all of my time.
This year, things will be very different.
Our youngest starts his last year of high school tomorrow and the
day after our other son is headed 4 1/2 hours away to college
The house is about to be very quiet.
Except for the sewing room.

Just this week I've started two new quilts,
one of which is Happy Quilting's Seeing Stars QAL.

Today I'm linking up to Happy Quilting
with the first set of blocks.

It is so good to be working with fall colors again.

Each of these blocks are 24"...

which makes them the biggest I've ever worked with.
And completely opposite the blocks in my
other new project that I hope to post tomorrow.

Happy quilting!

13 August 2018

And Now the August Block

With my garden work slowing down,
I'm finally able to spend more time in the sewing room.

My August block of A Quilting Life's BOM is completed
and I'm now all caught up.  The background fabric 
in the above pic is more creamy than appears.
And in the pic below the lighting makes them look
varied but the background fabric is all the same.
Clearly spending time on perfect pics isn't my thing.

Just 4 more blocks/months to go!
(Where does time go!?!  It's almost time to go over next year's projected projects.)

Happy quilting!

10 August 2018

July Block Completed

If I'm going to be starting new projects,
(because, joyfully, it is now the season!)
I feel like I need to be completely caught up first
so after being at the longarm all afternoon, I took
a break to work on my July block of A Quilting Life's BOM.

The first block of the Seeing Stars QAL comes out next week
so between now and then, the plan is to complete the August block
as well as my son's quilt (just a few rows of quilting left).
Then it'll be headed off to college, along with my son, next weekend.
My youngest son begins school this coming week and so we
will all soon begin to find our way back into a schedule.

Happy quilting!

08 August 2018

August and September Banners

More rain and cool weather around here.
Not having to water my garden is a nice little break.
I keep saying I'm going to start getting out my fall decor
but, other than the front door wreath, it hasn't happened yet.
Yes, it's very early but I like the way the colors warm up our home so
I usually start bringing out a little bit here and there in August.  

I did get my August banner sewn up and there's nothing "fall"
about it so maybe it's just as well.

I whipped out September while I was at it but
it's just hanging out in my sewing room.

This month's banner isn't a favorite with me
but I didn't want to take the time to come up with my own
and it does make me think about buying a box of apples!

I have the Jacob's Ladder college quilt up and going on the LA.
This is my first go at this design so it's always a little frustrating that
those first warm-ups go in the border where the quilting shows the
most but I console myself that this is now the bottom (foot) of the quilt!
I think with keeping it slow and steady I will soon get it down well enough.  

My mind is already wondering off to my next project.
I have several that I need to start but the Jacob's Ladder was really pretty
time-consuming and I'm feeling the need to relax and play around first.

This QAL showed up in my feed yesterday and I've decided to join in.
I'm a sucker for stars, and for quilt-alongs.

Unlike my BOM, I like that it is condensed down and will be done by
mid-October, especially if go the route I'm thinking--use up some fall fabrics!

I'm linking up with these today but I want to have another 
"tear through my fabric" session just in case another idea comes to me.
I've had other fall quilts in mind for a while so it might be best if
I were to choose a different theme.  I love that Melissa of Happy Quilting
has so many color options posted for you to get a better idea of
what you might want to do with all those stars, not to mention a
color page for you to play around with more.

I have a full day at the long arm staring me down so off I go.
Lucky me!
Happy quilting!

03 August 2018

Jacob's Ladder College Quilt Top Complete

The top is done and I couldn't be happier with it!
That's my teaser photo; I'll get to the real one in a bit.

But first...what is up with our beautiful weather?
Kansas is usually pretty brutal--triple digits--about now but
for about 2 weeks we've had rains and highs in the 80's.
It's incredibly rejuvenating to step out and be greeted with that instead of,
even early in the morning, by "oh ick!".  But lately, I'm wearing a smile
of relief and a light sweater--sweater-weather is my favorite.
This post is even a little longer than I had intended because
I'm enjoying the whole morning outside--in August!
(okay, I'm usually outside in the garden anyway but sweating in the heat!)

Having taken the morning off, I'm sitting on a patio at a coffee shop.
It's not my favorite; sadly that one closed after just a few years.
I've been in mourning for a couple months now.
I miss seeing the regulars, I miss the owners who had
become friends and I miss real coffee.  Nothing else
compares--they roasted on-site even.  I suppose a positive
thing out of this is that I can get by on very little coffee a day.
I could easily quit if I wanted...but I don't want to.  Why?
I love mornings, I like routine and coffee seems fitting.

My routine has changed though.  I only go to a coffee shop maybe
twice a week now.  It's a quiet visit.  I might see someone I know,
I might not.  As a SAHM, I became pretty dependent on the interaction
at my old shop--maybe not all "friends" but people you see almost daily
to greet and see what's up with them.  That had more of an impact
than I ever realized.  At the time I really needed that with the chaos
of those few years (losing Mom, surgery, etc).  I still think I need it and
I badly want to replace it but I also think that God is saying
I need to use my time a little more wisely than healing spending
an hour at a coffee shop almost daily.

The garden certainly keeps me crazy busy and I've been making
all kinds of mental notes on where to cut back next year.
Our youngest "child" will be off to college then
(I may have a big announcement there but it isn't official yet!)
and we will be empty-nesters.  I could cut the garden in half
 and probably would still have too much, even with sharing
with the kids and friends.  What am I to do with that space?!?
Notice, I don't ask "what am I to do with that extra time?" :o)

Did I mention this weather is rejuvenating?!?
I get in a real quilting slump during the hot days especially when
don't have much time for it but I'm back to putting more hours
in the sewing room.  Cooler weather is such a quilt-catalyst.
And so, on to the Creighton-themed quilt...

I had plenty of border options but didn't deliberate much;
 I just picked, threw in some extra pieces..and voila, done.
It ended up measuring 99x77 so it's a little bigger than a TwinXL
but that can't be a problem for a college kid man, and certainly
it will be welcome in the middle of winter in Nebraska.

Here's a quick reminder on the school colors...

and so, without further ado, here's the big reveal:

I'm a bit of a perfectionist and tend to always think there's
a better way to everything.  I know to others it can come across
as being hard on myself or negative and I fight that a little bit but
for the most part, I just let it be a happy and positive driving force.
With every quilt finish, I step back and think about what I'd have
done differently and use it to learn for next time.
Can I just say, in all humility, I don't think I have a thing to learn here.
Nothing.  I just think it's perfect and I love it!
And I might just get a little giddy every time I look at it.

Now if only my quilting can measure up to at least half that standard!
I have a couple weeks yet before "the day" so I'll be taking my time.
Today I'm piecing up the back.  I hesitated there but running off
to the store to buy a large amount of fabric to make the back look great
seemed impractical when I have all this gray that I don't really need.

I'm going for big horizontal strips and that will just have to do.
I see it as being in the thrifty spirit of college life!  ;o)

Linking up

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