Saturday, February 11, 2012

{Post #908} Small Scrappy Bargello Blocks

From little acorns mighty oaks grow.  Here are some scrap strips left over from my Florabunda blocks made into small bargello blocks.  They measure 9 inches (finished size).  The starting strips were 2 inches wide.  I am going to make enough for a baby quilt or possibly something a little larger.  I dared to mix Thimbleberries and my wild florals plus a little of this and a little of that.  The more you add, the more nothing stands out.  Who thought T'b could play with other fabrics so nicely?  This is only 4 blocks, but there will be many more.

{Post #907} Frame Up & Blooms, Too

My husband surprised me by putting the frame together last took about FIVE hours.  We didn't get to bed until almost one o'clock in the morning.  Can't remember the last time that happened.  It seemed to involve lots of concentration-requiring steps, so we didn't visit, and I didn't try to help.  I sewed.  We're not in Thimbleberries anymore!  

Here are some pictures from the evening:

Having a big birthday party for Rachel tomorrow afternoon, so I need to concentrate on that.  I hope to get a chance to at least read the handbook for the frame and see how to load the leaders and a quilt!


Friday, February 10, 2012

{Post #906} HQ Frame & Florabunda

Since I still had my watercolor fabrics out, I decided to cut as many strips for my Florabunda quilt as I reasonably could.  I cut enough for 28 more blocks (already have 8 pieced).  There seems to be a lot of black background fabrics, so I want to sew these up and see what colors I want to add more of.

I don't have more than 3 of any one fabric, and they are not all matched up with the same "neutral".  I then subcut the triangles with my Easy Angle ruler.  It goes so fast during the piecing if you put your strips right sides together and not disturb them until they are sewn.  

As usual, after cutting a bunch of fabric, I can barely tell that the original stack shrunk at all.  I also made some cuts for a scrappy bargello quilt using some of these same prints (I am using 2" x 12-1/2" strips for that).  I wanted to use up the print if it just had one more strip in it.

Here are 28 blocks in a stack, ready to sew:

Isaac hurt his knee.  It is his laundry day.  I didn't want him going up and down the steps, so I did his laundry for him (which was a reason I was downstairs and able to sew some before supper).  I finished sewing the units for the Florabunda in the nick of time to make supper...Broccoli Pasta Soup, one of our favorites.

Here is the pile under my sewing table.  After supper I am going to press and subcut 4-patch units while I watch a movie.

Does that look like 28 nine-inch blocks to YOU?

Here are the long-awaited boxes.  Although I did some cleaning up in the garage in anticipation of moving my Little Gracie frame out there, it might be another week or so before the HQ frame is assembled and ready to use.  I can easily distract myself with other happenings though.


{Post #905} Highway Hearts

This modern technology!  So much to have to learn.  I emailed myself this picture from the parking lot of the flea marker from my phone.  Rachel and I go over nearly every Friday from 9 AM until she sells all her muffins and brownies.  Those who haven't gotten hot chocolate or coffee by then are just out of luck.

This is my Highway Hearts quilt.  Most of it has been sewn on the road or asphalt!  I will check later to see how much hand quilting remains, but I know I'm 3 motifs closer to being finished than I was before this AM.  The lighting has been perfect in our vehicle lately.  It's bright, but slightly overcast...perfect for hand quilting.

Looking back at my blog, I realized that I started cutting and piecing this about a year ago.  It has been to Ohio and Florida numerous times.  The stories this quilt could tell.  Several specific memories are piecing 18 blocks in a hotel room while my husband attended meetings in FL while I suffered with a sinus infection, quilting at Emily's kitchen table in between washing the mud-mixing tools for Nate at 2 AM, and hand quilting in my parents "Florida room" in Ohio (which is ironic because that's where most of the real work took place--in Florida).  That leads me to explain my blog.  It's a journal for me.  I am grateful for those ladies I have gotten to know through it (hi, Julie!), but it's is a journal of events, quilts, daily happenings, etc.  It's nice to be able to look back on it from time to time.

I had to make a quick trip home for Rachel for some items she forgot to pack, and THE UPS TRUCK WAS IN FRONT OF MY HOUSE when I got there.  My HQ frame is 5 big boxes (pictures to come later).  I am so blessed to have the room and money for this big ma'am-moo...

Bonnie posted pictures of her Florabunda quilt blocks this AM.  Mine are the opposite of hers.  Drat!  But I have 8 blocks made and there is no turning back.  Her neutral is yellow.  Mine is light florals because I'm not a yellow fan (to each her own, eh?).  Her main color is the chain, mine is the light color.  But at least I was consistent!

Off to get some lunch and then check schoolwork, etc.  Typical day in my life.


Thursday, February 9, 2012

{Post #904} Life After Thimbleberries

I was just thinking that I haven't been this tired in a long time.  Then I simultaneously realized that this is my third post today.  A connection?  Nah!

When I went through my watercolor fabrics earlier, I was wondering what I could make to use some of them.  You know I NEED to start a new project!  I didn't want to make an actual watercolor quilt.  So I started auditioning some of them in other quilts.  You know I'm a die-hard Thimbleberries girl, so this did not come easily.

Eventually I went with Bonnie Hunter's Florabunda pattern.  It's just a Jacob's Ladder with florals.  I am not a big fan of yellow, so I am using light florals for my "yellow".  I have sewn 8 blocks this afternoon.  Here is a sample:

And four together:

Have a good night!  Found out my new frame will be here tomorrow!


{Post #903} Red Zinger Update

I went and did it.  I pulled out all my watercolor fabrics and trimmed the selvages off so I could finish the two blocks.  I like to end a project with a "finished" number of blocks.  I am thinking over some ideas for a border for this.  Below is one of the last two new blocks before trimming, the 24 blocks laid out, and a possible border idea.

Off to make lunch and tidy up the kitchen a bit.


{Post #902} Red Zinger

Here is the Red Zinger as of this AM.  The reason I picked 10-1/2" foundation blocks is so I could cut the selvage off the red and end up with no waste.  I put the selvage in my selvage box then cut 4 ten and a half inch squares and pitch the tiny sliver left.  

Right now I don't have many varieties of selvages.  I am going to cut some off my I Spy stack and make the last two blocks to finish this set out.  Trying to decide how many blocks I want total as well as what I'll do for a border.  Have a couple ideas floating around up there. 

This measures 60" x 40"  I will make the center at least 60" square, then add borders.

I have these left over from my Texas Braid and just might find a way to use them for a border.  They are not the same red, but variety is the spice of life, eh?

Something to mull over.

In very exciting news...someone emailed me about buying my Little Gracie frame.  My new HQ one should be here by Monday, so no time like the present to get this one out!!


Wednesday, February 8, 2012

{Post #901} Red Zinger and Youngest Son

Last night I wondered what I could sew when I got my next opportunity.  I stitched this earbud holder for myself:

This AM I was hampered by a gnarly cut right at the corner of my thumb nail of my right hand.  It is deep...looks like the skin just cracked because it's so dry outside.  Anyway...I didn't exercise this AM because touching it makes me want to scream.  So I cut out some background blocks for the Red Zinger and sewed 4 more.  

I used some newer non-Thimbleberries fabrics, so I will need to spread the bright colors out a bit.  Some were from I Spy prints and others from Christmas ornaments I put together or my kids for this year.  One strip was from the owl fabric in the above picture.  

This is so fun to sew...very little brain power needed and it's like using up strings, but no need to turn the raw edge under.  Each block finishes at 10". 

Here are pics including my new blocks and a close-up showing the owl print selvage:

That sky/light blue really stands out, doesn't it?  Will definitely need to keep an eye on the placement of those blocks.

My youngest...just time to update a picture of the little nipper:

Ta ta for now...


Tuesday, February 7, 2012

{Post #900} Away She Goes

Here is my Little Gracie quilt frame.  I am trying to sell it (just listed on Craig's List) to make way for the new HandiQuilter frame coming within a week.  I've probably had it ten years or thereabouts.  I have used it quite a bit, but it's none the worse for the wear.  I hope I can find someone who can use it.


Monday, February 6, 2012

{Post #899} Pinwheel Block

A little here and a little there, and voila' Lori Smith Pinwheel block is complete.  I am thinking about framing this one in a regular picture frame.  I even have a recipient in mind.

It measures 12" square.  I may need to add another round depending on how large the frame I saw is.  Here 'tis:

It IS square and flat.  Quilts can be difficult to photograph.

Off to the post office to mail my Saturday yard sale items.  If you look back at the post and still want to purchase something, it's there for the taking.  I struck through the sold items.  I will be participating in Bonnie's next one, with an individual picture of each item.