28 January 2019

Hexie Quilt Takes Off

Things are really taking off with the hexie quilt.

I love to make quilts for others but I have kind of
a personal rule to never make them "special order."
Yet, here I am making one so I guess I make exceptions for
my own kids.  However, it's solidifying in my mind
to stick to that personal rule.  I'm getting in some fun sewing
time but I don't feel any creativity going on here.  It probably
doesn't help that I'm using a pre-selected set of fat quarters.
Of course, this is a great option for someone, like my daughter,
 who isn't used to picking out fabrics for a quilt...but, I digress.

When there are 288 "pie slices" to piece together, it's definitely
audiobook time.  I started David Copperfield back in November
(I think)--listened quite often for a while, dropped off during the holidays
and then picked it back up again a few weeks ago.  I knew it was
a big book but wow--it seems like I've been listening to it forever.
Not that I'm not enjoying it; I am.  Let's just say I would just like
to find out how things turn out for "Master Davie"
by the end of this quilt.

And here's where I'm at so far.
To help with the "randomness" of this quilt, I made the decision
to piece these differently from the directions--meaning I'm
going to have to deal with Y seams...and I think that'll be okay.
I've done them before.  But just to make sure, I might start 
putting some of this together before I go farther, just to make
sure this is how I want to continue.

Meanwhile, my sewing room has "pie pairings" strewn about
and it's a little like having landmine issues to deal with
while trying to get to my sewing machine...

...except for that whole being-killed thing.
There doesn't seem to be any of that.
(Death by fabric?)
Still, the sooner I get all this off my floor, the better.

So, this week:
Finish hexie quilt top

And that's really it.

Happy quilting!

22 January 2019

Road Trip: Fabric for the West Point Quilt

I'm still learning how to use my EQ8 program (thanks Santa!)
but here is a "rough draft" of I'm planning for the
West Point quilt--except I have a change or two.

The blocks are grays--very dark to very light.  I'll be making the
center smaller and the cornerstones will actually be gold stars
I just haven't figured out how to do this on the program yet.

Starting this seemed like a good excuse to head to Missouri Star
so off I went on another trip to Hamilton MO, this time with hubs.
Something to note there, men:  the pub is not open on Mondays!
(poor, poor hubs--at least there was Man's Land!)

There was a biting cold wind and lots of snow--not the best
weather for walking around but I, of course, enjoyed it!

I was more focused on fabrics than the quilts around me so, other
than this stunning quilt above, I took no other pics.  I remember it
being a little more antique-y than in my pic so that it really didn't
seem so much a Halloween quilt; either way, a beautiful quilt!

I wasn't too successful finding what I needed for my son's quilt
but at least I formed a better idea--and I did get a start.  There are
always plenty of shops closer to home so, as long as the weather
is conducive, I'll start hitting some of those later this week.

I did kinda-sorta <wink> find some other fabrics though.
A $3/yd end-of-bolt sale?  I had to look at those and likely
would have purchased more if not for the obligation of taking
entire bolt (most were very full).  In my case, this was a
good thing--I'm supposed to be decreasing my bolt stash!

Here's one I found with minimal yardage; very me.
(This would have gone so well with my last project!)

I have a 30's quilt in mind so I picked these up:  
Red/pink:  3+ yards (or a Valentine's Day project?)
Green leaf:  14 yards (yikes!) for backing and maybe a border 
and/or binding...and maybe a baby quilt or two?

have a layer cake and about 4.5 yds (bolt) from the same line
as the above teal w/eggs fabric so I grabbed it up at $5/yd.

The solid gray is for the hexi quilt that my daughter picked out;
I posted a little about this last summer and it's on this year's list.

I've cut out all the main pieces using an 8" 60-degree triangle
ruler rather than a template--that was very worthwhile buy,
even if it's not likely I'll do very much else with it.  I'm not a
ruler-collector but as I hadn't a single triangle already, 
it seemed a good idea.

I just have the background fabrics to cut now, something I intended
on doing but it's been a very lazy day after all of yesterday's driving.
It's also bitter cold and windy so I'm sitting in front of a fire.
I will either continue to be lazy in front of this fire or hop up and
start cutting out more of the hexi quilt.  Decisions...

Happy quilting!

19 January 2019

Letting One Go

After some frustrating paper-piecing, I spent an afternoon making
a few of my Victory Mini's, as I've been temporarily calling them.
(based on the name of the original quilt Michael's Victory).
I haven't added to this pile in months and need to do better.
They're very slow-going but tackling a small amount at a time
is a nice "betweener".  It's also good on the ol' scrap bin.

 I keep saying I have no idea how this one will end up
but I'm beginning to feel that the when will be next fall.
I believe this is the only time I've had an "open-ended" project,
and I'm not sure it's for me. I think it messes with my need
for finishing things.  Having a deadline, even though still
a little vague, makes me feel instantly better about it.

I believe this puts me at a total of 72 blocks.
Keep in mind there are "blank" blocks between so,
in a manner of quilt-speakingit's more like 144.

After that little breather, I went back to the foundation-piecing
problem.  I did some tweaking and came up with more adequate
measurements for the pieces.

Here's where I guess I'll fess up.  I was so relieved when I put
the final pieces together!  Hallelujah.  Ah, that moment when you
enjoy the reveal of what you've been working on for hours!

(How does that even happen!?)

I don't usually make trial blocks because I want to jump
right in and get started but you know what?  If there ever
was a good time to do one, it was for this block.
It's pretty but...not pretty enough to do 12 times.
The pieces are a bit big and clumpy for me to feel a 
delicate, soft snowflake.
Nope.  It's just not there.
By the way, we finally got some snow.
Not a big amount, and it mostly came
overnight but at least it didn't all melt this time. 
So I'm wearing a sweater that says "Let It Snow!"

And back that painstakingly paper-pieced snowflake?
I've decided to just let it go.
Not only am I choosing a different block altogether,
I'm moving the entire project back--again.
But that's okay.
A few other quilts need to be finished first.

Happy Quilting.

16 January 2019

The First Full Finish of 2019

Here we are at mid-January already.

Son #1 is back up at Creighton, son #2 is off on a
trip to DC and the house is really quiet.  Time to tackle
some of these quilting plans I have for the year.

Instead of buying my usual journal/planner for the year, I decided
to go rogue and customize my own.  I love the color and the feel
of this one.  It's limited on space but, like my sewing room, that just
helps me keep things simple.

  Even so, I decided to try out some free printable printable pages
but found that most, if not all, are not for me.  The jury is
still out on the quilt project planning pages.  They're in there and they
have their own little file-tab; they're all filled out...but I just don't see
the point when the real life projects are sitting in my sewing room
staring at me so that I can't forget about them.  I'm leaving the pages
in for the year to see if sometime I need to refer to them and track
their progress....for some strange reason.  Well, we'll see.

All those trendy "bullet" journals, habit tracking and doodling?  Meh.
I just like my weekly goals, and my yearly ones.  And of all the
calendar options out there, I've settled on some simple undated
weekly pages that I pulled out of a Target dollar-bin binder.
Who'd have thought?

Well anyway, on to some of those weekly goals:
 I did finish last week's even if I ran over into this one a bit. 
Some sort of celebrating and rejoicing was taking place
(my son's Official Appointment to West Point!)
so I got a little "behind"...but no biggie.

First, I got those January and February banners done.

Off-schedule, I toyed a bit with that Icy Window Panes 
quilt (Hoffman) that I'm contemplating.

I'm thinking of making the background of each block red
(keeping the white sashing) and the snowflake white.
My fabrics are all silvery-grays, reds and whites.
Any thoughts there?

I decided to do a trial block.
It's a good thing, too, because I've discovered that if I cut
my pieces according to directions, they don't seem to fit,
no matter how much I rip out and reposition.  Still trying
to figure that one out.  I've not done a lot of this method but
I think I've done enough to be pretty sure I'm doing it right.

Since I'll be making 12 blocks, that got me thinking:
I wasn't going to do a block-of-the-month quilt this year
but what if I turn this into a BOM of my own?
One slooow block a month doesn't seem so bad.

And lastly, here's my big finish!

The flowers in the fabric, the stars and the pinwheels all made me think
of Kansas mornings in June.  If you get up early enough you can
head outside to enjoy those first cool breezes before the sun rises.

Later it's going to be hot, maybe even brutal hot, but at this time
you kind of soak it up just like the flowers are doing because they
know they'll be wilting later!  Maybe I should've called it
"The Early Flower Catches the Breeze"??
Ha!  Who am I kidding?  This is Kansas.  We'll all catch
that breeze whether we want to or not.

First Breath of Dawn
"Stars and Pinwheels" pattern from Missouri Star
Fabrics:  Nature's Glory by Kansas Troubles

I guess my name is a little "overly poetic" but I wanted
it to contain what I was thinking as I worked on it.
I was so happy to finally get this on our bed last night!
Due to the holidays and all, it took me a whole month to
complete the quilting.  I never did get fully comfortable
with that pantograph pattern but it got a little better as
I progressed and, like always, as a "whole" it looks fine.

And to the week ahead, what's left of it?

Work more on that snowflake.
Make the backing, load on frame and quilt Cozy Christmas.
Finish planning son's West Point Quilt

And coming up next week?  Another trip to Missouri Star
to hunt for fabrics for my son's quilt.  Will post my ideas soon...

Happy Quilting!

12 January 2019

Announcing....a Quilt in Black and Gold!

It has been months and months of a very thorough process
but the notice has arrived and we can now share the news!


Our youngest has received an appointment to West Point!
Needless to say we're amazed, ecstatic, humbled...oh,
just all sorts of things and of course, very proud.

 Does it get any better than this?

I'm pretty sure he'll be too busy to miss home.
It'll be an incredible ride and a LOT of hard work
but he is really looking forward to all of the
challenges and eventually the opportunity
to serve his country!

So it's time to start designing a quilt in
black and gold for our Black Knight.

He won't need it with him at school but it'll be on his
bed here at home for when he visits.  And if I can 
be quick enough, maybe he'll enjoy it a little before
he leaves this summer.
Lots of work to do!

Happy quilting!

10 January 2019

The Video Every Quilter Should Watch

Let's be honest--you're sitting hunched over your
computer right now, aren't you?  I am, or at least I was
till I watched this again this morning.

Just a quick pop in this morning to pass
along short video on posture and breathing
from Missouri Star.

It focuses on us quilters who spend a lot of time sitting
at our machines and standing over a table
but the exercises are really great for anyone.
Ok, everyone. 

Happy Quilting!

09 January 2019

January and February Banners Complete

We're a week into January so it's past time
to get that banner made up.

We take most of our holiday decor down around Epiphany
but I like to leave up some greenery & lights, along with
some generic winter/snow-themed decor.
The house is just too pretty and cozy that way,
and besides, I'm still waiting on that blizzard.

At least I got a snowman built.

Because of the way I tear through my scraps, it's always
easier to do these in multiples so February is
ready to go as well.  Only 3 more months to go!

Happy quilting!

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