Last To-Do's of September and The Great Pumpkin?

Here we are nearing the end of September and
fall has arrived!  Oh the glorious sweater weather!

How can you not be in the mood to quilt!?
I've certainly kicked it up a bit.  I have a finish,
an almost-finish and a lot of completed blocks
to share so let's get right on into the ta-da's.

From last week's list:

 1) Bind and completely finish the garlic knots.
Yes!  It's a finish!  As they say in the Army, "Hooah!"

 I did some serious power binding, I tell you!
Because I machine-sew all of it, I never rush through
this part because that messes with my accuracy.
(I don't mind hand-sewing but I can save so
much time doing it by machine.)
But I've just been so busy on my other projects that I
let this one go till yesterday afternoon.  If it weren't
for this Tuesday To-Do thing, it probably would have
sat there till today or maybe even tomorrow but
I made a goal and by golly, I'm gonna meet it!  

Autumn Accolades (88 X 103)

You know what?  For rushing, I didn't do too bad.
I finished that binding in record time--like a pro.
Like someone who had been quilting for a long time.
Oh, hey...that's me.

Something like 20 years, not counting all the years
of sewing clothes and everything else before.

The quilting pantograph is
Pumpkin Fest by Urban Elementz.

Btw, I have a quilt-naming tip:
Hit the online thesaurus and start searching any
feature of your quilt.  I do this a lot but I also love
thesauruses [thesauri?] so I can kinda get lost.

Anyhoo, I started by searching the word
"wreaths" because the knots make out wreaths
and it was only a step or two to accolades.

So here is my praise to autumn and all its splendor.
And inspiration.

(Clearly I had too much fun taking pics.)

2) Complete quilting on West Point.
I'm gonna digress a bit here but just work with me.
I'll bring it back around.

I've quilted long enough that I just don't "learn"
as often as I used to, or rather, I don't encounter
new info about the actual craft of quilting like I did when
I was a newbie so I was pretty darned excited to learn
something new the other day when I was watching
the MSQC video that kicked off their 12th birthday
celebration.  Jenny shared her reason why they only
do edge-to-edge quilting at Missouri Star.

She said it is because she wants her quilts
to be used and to be loved. That means they're
going to be washed and take some wear.
Of course!
Making specific and separate designs is beautiful on a
quilt that is to be art but of course a single quilting design
in, say, each individual block would cause a quilt to
separate out into compartments with usage and wash
rather than serve to hold it together.  I have always been,
like Jenny, a quilter who wants her quilts loved and used.
If one gets used up I have 10 more to replace it!
(...and here's where I bring it back around.)
I debated for a month about what to do on this West Point
quilt.  I had a lot of ideas but nothing that made me want
to jump on there and start quilting.  When I heard Jenny's
 reasoning, I was relieved.  Issue solved, decision made.

 Just a few weeks ago, my sister and I discussed
pantograph quilting v. FMQ, rulers and such. 
If I'm really enjoying pantograph quilting,
 why stop now?  There are other areas I want
to challenge myself in so I'll focus on those.

(notice the threads all over the floor!)

Speaking of challenge!
I have to share one more thing about this quilt.
 I think we've all played Bobbin Chicken before but
apparently I like to take things up a notch and play
Backing Chicken.
I won with just one little inch to spare!
I would have just trimmed the border down if it
hadn't worked out but I knew I could do it!

Back to that long story and making it short: 
I went with the pantograph all the way.
The quilting is complete; the binding and label
should be going on today.  It will get finished
before I head out on the shop hop!

3) Work on new Mini-Double Nine-Patch.
I've been doing some marathon sewing here.

Lots of football watching this weekend!
The new machine is getting some time logged, for sure.
But you know what was driving me crazy?  I missed the
surface from my bigger machine--so I got an idea...

My extension table!
No, it doesn't wrap around exactly but it's close
enough.  My sewing speed went up by 40% just by
having it there.  I guess that will be something I do
without if I ever travel with this one but I can sure
bring it from the sewing room to the living room!

I'm a little farther on these blocks now but 
this pic shows what's going on, and I love it!
You do a lot of thinking while you're sewing right?
At some point, I get around to wondering exactly how
many pieces are in the quilt I'm working on so:
4410...unless I go even bigger (I doubt it!).
And those little squares finish at 3/4".

I need about 25 more blocks but I'm running out of
these little sets.  With all of the strips I started with, I
knew I'd end up with extra so I set some partial strip
sets aside so I could see what colors I wanted more
of before finishing up.  I definitely want more of the
pale green/gold combos.  To me, they look like light
coming through the trees.

I cannot get enough of looking at this quilt and
what the blocks are creating.  I really wanted this
to be a Christmas gift but I tell you right now,
I can't let this one go.
If you've done this, please let me in
on the story so I can feel a little less guilty.
What am I going to do with two more fall quilts?

4) West Point Table Runners
I have plans for these.  Really!  I'm just not
sure they'll happen this week or next.  See #5.
I also have another West Point sewing project
in mind but goodness!  So much going on!

5) Gardening stuff
Still canning tomatoes.
The second burst of pumpkins are doing well;
no threat of freeze so far.  Of that new burst, I've
picked 2 more pie pumpkins and one larger one.
Grow, pumpkins, grow!

If you've been wondering about the record-breaking
hopefuls, I don't think it's going happen.  I had to pick
one of them and he only weighed in at 42.6lbs, with
a girth of 51.5".  (My record is 56.4.)  The other one is
still on the vine but doesn't seem to be growing, though
it's hard to say.   I guess it's not a bad showing and
hey, there's always next year. 

A friend requested a walker bag to use while she
recovers from knee surgery so I spent an afternoon
making this little bag.  I think it turned it pretty cute,
except for the fact that the lining fabric was printed
crooked.  Had I been paying more attention, I would
have lined it up horizontally instead of vertically
when I was cutting it out.  It's a great little pattern
that I got off of Etsy.  
(I get nothing for this referral--just sharing.)

Saturday was likely our last hot day.
Knowing the weather was going to turn cold, we 
put our feet in the pool one last time and just
enjoyed the last taste of summer till next year.

We've been hoping for weeks now that the pool
would warm back up.  Saturday it reached 80'.
So close!  On a hot day, I'll get in at 82 but the
air was cool and the sun was setting.  I readily
welcome fall but this day is always a little sad.

But sweaters, fall leaves and hot drinks are here.
Shop hop, a short vacay, lots of quilting, football,
chili, family time--all coming up so, feeling blessed,
we say goodbye to summer and hello to fall!

For next week's to-do's I'm keeping it simple.

Next week's To-Do's:

1) Take pics from hop and quilt/vintage sale; 
post for everyone.
I emptied 3 bolts on the above projects so I'm feeling
good about some intense fabric shopping.

2) Finish WP quilt and list.  Try to get something
going with those table runners?

3) Work on "September" if I get time?
I might call it September Glow?
(Putting question marks after things
takes away the pressure, right?)

One last little thing--a fabric purchase:

Unfortunately, the coloring is off in the pic but I got
a few new ones last week--the first is olive and that
second one is black.  Oy!  The bolt on the bottom from
my stash goes super-well so I'm hunting for ideas.
I love the simplicity of the early-American/colonial
look so we've been trying to move toward this
just a little.  I like traditional and timeless--if
anything for its practicality.  The new light fixtures
hubs just put up me have made me so happy
that I'm wanting to move on to the next thing.
(I'm a very slow decorator!)
Maybe a nice early-American quilt?

Watch for LOTS of fun quilty pics next week!
Right now I'm off to the dentist.  Fun, fun.
(Just a semi-annual check-up.)

Happy quilting!
Linking up to:


Debbie said…
Great post! Loved your hint for quilt naming.....I have done that too. Super photos of the new finish. As for your long arm learning...if you are happy with the pantographs and enjoy them, then stick with the method. You don't have to master everything. It is what you enjoy, so stand firm.
Yes, I have started a quilt for a gift and then could not part with it. Some times it happens. I have also gifted ones I intended to keep. In one cases of that, I ended up making a table runner for me instead. It wasn't quite the same but it helped me enjoy the giving.
So looking forward to you adventure this week of hop and vintage sale. Have a great time.
Home Sewn By Us said…
Good morning, Cheree! Lots of newsy news today. First, before I forget - have a blast on the shop hop. I can't wait to see all the fabrics you bring home. I'm glad today's list pushed you into completely finishing Autumn Accolades. It is a gorgeous quilt and it looks SO nice on your bed. Very interesting about the MSQC tip about edge-to-edge. I personally like e2e designs plus I'm not talented enough do attempt a whole quilt of custom finishing. Your backing chicken - phew that was close. WOWEE to those mini itty bitty double nine-patch! That's way too small for me but I'll be happy to support you from here. Nice job. Thanks for linking up today. ~smile~ Roseanne
chrisknits said…
Autumn Accolades is stunning! And that mini D9P, oh my!!! Thank you for the tip on naming quilts, I will be sure to use that in the future.
Joyful Quilter said…
Autumn Accolades turned out beautiful! I love the picture of it draped on your porch steps with the pumpkins. I hate playing back chicken! So scary. Have fun on the shop hop.
Vicki in MN said…
What a fun post! So much happening at your house. I love how Garlic Knots turned out and I am glad that you were able to settle on your design for West Point and had another finish. Looking forward to seeing what you find on the hop, have fun!
Awesome quilts. I'm working on a Burgoyne Surrounded too when there are no other commitments but put my own spin on it. This is my second one and I love the challenge. Yes, I often count the number of pieces in my quilts.
Autumn Accolades is the perfect name for your Garlic Knots quilt, and a great idea for naming, too! Fun to read your post about everything going on!
Anne-Marie said…
Backing chicken...been there, done that. :D And yessssss to the tiny pieces! I love tiny pieces!
My Janome has it's own table, but I have an adjustable table that I can use with all of my vintage machines to give me more surface area. It really does help.
piecefulwendy said…
I may need to put a sewing table on my wish list for Christmas. It looks like a helpful tool. Your quilts are gorgeous! Glad you were able to dip your toes one more time - it's definitely chillier here. Fall has arrived!
eileen said…
Perfect colors in your Autumn accolades quilt, really looks like Autumn!!!
Lovely results!!