Thursday, 27 December 2012

Monday Mystery Link Up - Finally

I've been very tardy this week and not for any Christmas related events. Family and work have been in higher priority than blogging.
But here it is, my blocks such as they are:
I think there are about 10 finished.
In between working on the Fat Turkeys, I've been working on Lighthouses.
On our trip to N.S. in October I picked up this panel of 9 lighthouses and a companion fabric. Since then I've been trying to figure out how to use them.  I adapted a pattern from Benartex to fit the size of the panel blocks.
And I also worked on string piecing on the Esperia
Which made it up the stairs to the sewing room and just took over this wall from the Singer 99
So an awful lot went on this week. Not a lot of progress on Easy Street.
But it has been great to see what everyone else has done, over on Bonnie's link up.

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Yes I did

First, apologies for the sideways pictures in the last post, I don't know why my phone does that.
Hubby definately is tipping over the line into enabler.  When I came home from the store and told him about the machine I had successfully walked away from, he came back with "how deep was it's throat, would it work for machine quilting".  So we went back and measured. Slightly more room than my other machines.

So we got it.
And all the stuff that was crammed into the drawers.

Which included the original papers, dated 1958, the manual, and an attachable buttonholer. Plus alot of junk. Everything from bib suspener straps to name tape for camp.  The guy at the store said the family had just put their mother in a home, so they must not have wanted to clean this out.  But while the drawers were a mess, the machine itself is in pristine condition and sews like a dream machine.

If my sisters read this, please don't call hoarders on me. I promise this is the last one, really...

Should I go back and get it???

While thrifting today I saw a sewing cabinet. Inside was a Necchi esperia. Came home right away to discuss with the hubby.

Monday, 17 December 2012

Monday Link UP

I'm really glad Bonnie does a Mystery-monday-link-up . It really helps me to get myself organized and on track with what is done, not done, over done, underdone etc.
The white/black & grey four patches - not done. Got  168 - 24 to go
The white/black & purple flying geese - done 128
The white/black rectangles - done 64
The shaded 4 patches - not done. Got 46 - 18 to do
Green rectangles - not done any
Turquoise flying geese - not done. Got 17 - 47 to do
But you might notice up in the left corner, I managed to do 8 of the Geese on a string blocks.
And I finished a trip around the world flimsy. I started this one back in the begining of summer and wanted to move it off the "to do" list. Bonnie's directions make these so much easier.  Trying hard during Easy Street to finish up lingering projects so I can have a clear slate to take on some new ones that have been calling me.

Like the string geese. I set up Agent 99 to do the string piecing. And I found another project to move onto the design wall. A scrappy trip around the world, as per Bonnie's directions started last year. What has every one else been up to? Time to go check it out.

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Great time had by all tonight

A great time was had by all in my sewing room tonight for Quiltcam 12-12-12.
DH was in his ususal spot, listening while reading his e-mail.
The cat joined us, after I found his UFO and placed it on the floor for him.


And I sewed away at the Scrappy Mountain Majesties.
We're such a wild and crazy bunch.
All sewn together and pinned up on the basting wall. Now to decide if I want to do a border. I was thinking of doing a texas braid but might just do a 2" band of solid colour.

Monday, 10 December 2012

Mystery Monday #3

I'm doing a better job of keeping up with the clues this time. During Orca Bay I fell behind and never caught up. I did get it finished by June.
I was watching Quiltcam and cutting the white/black triangles Saturday night and ended up with 120 before I remembered it was supposed to be 64.
I have 12 completed and several in stages. I'm so glad Bonnie mentioned once on Quiltcam that she will throw in seersucker when she is doing a scrappy quilt. I found this lovely stripe in my stash and really wanted to include it but was worried how it would act in a quilt.  I cut 10 of the 3.5" triangles out of it and really like how it looks with the purple.
So now to link up with the rest over at Bonnie's mystery-monday-link-up-part-3.

Friday, 7 December 2012

Sidetracked by Gift Idea

My progress on Easy Street has been sidetracked by an idea I had for a gift. Back in Septermber, I saw a neat idea for a mug rug on a blog.  She took a pretty hanky and turned it into an even prettier mug rug .I had an appliqued bridge tablecloth I was thinking of using. While it was in the washer getting freshened up (a little dingy from sitting unused for quite a while), I rooted through fabric looking for supplies. Managed to find the insulated batting I had purchased eons ago, and  a Moda turnover I hadn't found the right pattern to use in. And I found a stash of the salesman's samples my sister had given me two years ago. Most of those got used in my Scrappy Bargello but this bunch I had kept aside. It was the whole line of some fabric, all the different colourways and designs and I had wanted to use them together in  something but these samples were all smaller than FQs even.
Turned the turnover into hourglass units for the backing
Then I did a half log cabin with the sample fabric. The white is a border around the hourglass. Decided this was too big.
Took off the white border.  The last logs of the half log cabin worked better at being 1.5" rather than the 2" , this made it the same size as the back. Basically just making this up as I go along.

The too big one I quilted up and will keep for myself.
So this has been occuping my sewing time and distracting me.
Especially as one is not enough. DH thinks they should be a set of four and since they are for his mother I will make four.
Oh the tablecloth? Totally sidetracked, it was still in the washer. 

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

New to me

Quite a quilty day here. However I didn't make the same mistake as Friday, I kept moving between activities. A little sewing, a little ironing, a lot of laundry, variety in activity seems to work for my back pain.
And the new to me item?  A new table for my Singer 99. Her bentwood case was pretty beat up and I didn't have a key for it. So when we were picking up the featherweight from the repair man , DH and  he got to talking about all the other machines I have and what we were doing with them. A day later the sewing machine guy called and said he had a table for this one. We looked and we liked. So he gave the 99 a tune up, fixed her power cord and today we picked up the two of them.
They look really good together. Plus he had a manual for me.
Flying geese for Easy Street are done, just a few more 4 patches and I'm caught up. I've been using the Majestic Mountains as leader/enders and have a wall full of them. So much so, they are falling off .  Just a few more and I'll put them together.

Monday, 3 December 2012

Mystery Monday #2

Here we are on clue number two on our mystery down Easy Street. I very excited to get clue number two, so excited I even logged on before leaving for work, something I never do. So I was ready to come home and get going. Adding to the excitement was my featherweight was home from the repairman and I was eager to see how she sewed.
So I popped her in her table and away we went. Cutting and sewing, using the other side of the table as a cutting station.

The next day my back was killing me. The table is too short to cut standing up. I couldn't even sit to sew it hurt too much.

Despite the setback, I was able to get 70 geese blocks done, and I have 120 four patches finished.
And during QuiltCam  on Sunday I was able to get the binding done on the Crayon Box quilt.

So now to link up with all the other mystery sewers over at Quiltville mystery-monday-link-up

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Tuesday Try IT

Today is Try it on Tuesday over at Jo's  And I had something in mind to do but it took all day to get to it.  Mostly because it required some help from DH and he was quite busy at work today, not about to drop everything and come running.

Some time ago I watched a Youtube video by a quilter where she showed how she basted her quilts on her wall.  It stuck in my mind. I can't always take over the dining room table (well actually I can but I shouldn't) and leaning over the table is a pain.
So I got DH to dig out an old cardboard box we had put aside, a huge box - this was the new tub surround we installed two years ago. He cut it down and taped it  for me and we propped it up in the upstairs hallway

 Straight pins holding the back to the cardboard while we size the batting.
(DH is trying to get out of the picture and still hold the fabric)
And the crayon box is basted
 The duct tape in the centre is like a hinge and it can fold up so we can carry it back to the garage until needed again.

Ta Da ! A Basting Wall.

Monday, 26 November 2012

Mystery Monday #1

Monday is here already and what have I gotten done? The mystery started Friday and I was ready to go to it, having a day off and the fabrics pulled/purchased. Had to purchase some greys as it isn't a colour I've done much with before. Before long I was unsatisfied with my grey and wanting more variety. Luckily the local chain fabric store was having sale so I dashed right over.
(several hours later, ...)
I was using the stips and foursies as leaders and enders while I finished the Story-time Stars. Sneaking in time before and after work, I managed to get 60 sets of four done and the Stars finished.

That was the tally first thing this morning. Since then I've added another 40 to a grand total of 100. And enough checkerboard squares to finish the sashing all around the outside. I've dragged myself away long enough to post this and link up with Bonnie's easy-street-monday-link-up.  Now to throw a batch of chili in the crockpot and get back to sewing.
Ooops, just noticed I didn't post a picture of the fabrics I've selected

Friday, 23 November 2012

Working the UFO pile

Finally after a week of work that seemed to never end, I had a day to focus on sewing.  My main goal was to get a work in progress finished. After all the cutting I'd been doing I wanted to just sew. The closest to a finish is the Crayon Box that has been languishing for months. The last hurdle was the border, I just couldn't decide what to do. So I grabbed a sold blue and hacked off 2.5 stips and slapped them on.

For the back I cut up more 10.5 square of all sorts of boy fabrics. I was trying for a sort of light /dark effect but messed it up somewhere betweent the layout and sewing machine. As my leaders and enders I was piecing this new project I cut out the other day. Another Story-time star with some new batiks I ordered from Keepsake. There are alot brighter colours than I had when I did this pattern in spring. And this time I am piecing the checkerboard sashing.
But all this ground to a halt when I bent my needle on a pin and tried to replace it. The featherweight can be a great machine but then can turn on me and get really fusy when I change anything.  It can take ages to get it back to running right.  So... I just pulled out another machine and kept on sewing.

Sunday, 18 November 2012

Cutting Shirts

Haven't been sewing for the past few days. Instead I have been focusing on cutting the box of shirt backs I bought. I've set up a cutting station on the corner of my featherweight table and after a few hiccups have an efficient system worked out. The hiccups were minor; finding my 9.5" square ruler (that exercise ended with me refolding and stacking all the fabric on the shelf then finding it somewhere else altogether) and dropping my rotary cutter. I didn't cut my foot but I did bend the blade. Only to discover it was the last blade in the house, necessitating a trip for more.
Each shirt back is providing at least two 8.5' square for the Scrappy Mountain Majesties block, a 2.5" , a 2" and a 1.5" strip, some strings for the bin and some chunks for the scrap basket. Whatever is left after I cut those, I'm putting back in the red basket for later consideration.
String bin, 2.5" , 2", 8.5", 1.5"
Already it looks like I'm going to have to get a bigger container for the 2" strips.

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

It's Tuesday

So if it is Tuesday, it is "Try It" day over at Jo's .
 Boy, am I excited. I have expanded my horizons, thought outside the box, all that cliche stuff.

Therefore I have something to share. It started with the call for quilt donations for Sandy relief efforts.  I really wanted to do something but what. Timing is important, they need them now. So what would be fastest? One of the many panels I have in the stash. Quickest backing? My sister swears by flannel, not something I've done before. However my dear FIL had gifted me with several yards of the sweetest yellow flannel some time back. So here it is:
And my sis is right, it is so soft you don't want to let it go.  Somehow I had the idea it would be difficult to work with but it wasn't, and having to vacuum the sewing machine afterwards isn't that big a deal.

Another trial of a new to me technique: invisible thread. I didn't want the quilting on the dinosaur panel to detract from the cuteness of the Dino's so I found a spool of invisible thread (also in the stash) and tried that out.
Dinos outlined

The third item I tried was not a smashing success, at least I don't think so. In order to speed thing up a bit, I tried the none binding edge, pillowcase style, envelope whatever it is called. Where you sew the edges of the top and backing right sides together with the batting then turn them right sides out like a pillowcase.

It was fast, but I wasn't sure how much quilting I could do with the edges already sewn and it is more like a comforter than a quilt.
So that's what I've tried out. And now that these are done and boxed to mail out, my reward is here.
The box of shirt backs from the yard sale last Saturday is here already.  The only thing keeping me from digging through it right now is writing this post.
 Hey, I'm outta here, there's fabric calling me.

Sunday, 11 November 2012

Donation Quilt

For the past week, when I haven't been working at the nursing home I've been working on a couple of quilts to donate to the Sandy relief efforts. I figured the fasted way to get one done and in the mail was to use one of the panels I have in the stash. And to speed it up even more I backed it with some flannel that my FIL had given me a while back. Thus no piecing, just quilting. Here is the second one done, I was really pleased with the free motion quilting on this. I outlined all around the dinos, the tree , moon and stars using an invisible thread.
Then I found a fabric for the border that had dinos on it also. All done and labeled. Feeling so proud of my work, I went to the website of the group asking for kid quilts and found in the list of requirements that mono-filament thread not be used. Dang. Basic 101 lesson - always read through the whole instructions before begining the exam.
But those stars are so awesome...
who could resist.

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

A little sewing time

I squeezed in a little sewing time today while organizing the new sewing room. Yesterday we got enough done to bring up my featherweight from the basement.
So I had to make some of the disappearing nine patches that have been tempting me for days.
Here is the nine patch

And this is what it becomes. Not sure about the scrappy lights, maybe I should have stayed with a constant. But I am enjoying making them.
I'm also working on a pieced back for the crayon box top. Hung a piece of batting to use as a design wall, but it didn't last long, the sticky patches weren't sticky enough. I cut a stack of 10.5" blocks from all my juvenile boys fabrics and was playing around with them trying to get a pleasing arrangement until it ended up like this.

And then like this...

 Back to square one. Tomorrow.