Thursday, November 16, 2017

Vintage blocks

Here's another doll quilt (about 24 inches square) made from the parts department. And these are definitely vintage blocks from some time in the 80s. The thread I was using then looks more like cording compared to the thinner thread of today. I had eight blocks and had to make another. It was huge in comparison. Happily, fabric is a rather pliable substance.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Baby Bunny Quilt

Remember the bunny quilt I wanted to finish on Sunday night. Ha. Well, its finally finished. I did do extra quilting inside each bunny (around the arms and eyes) and this required changing out the thread for each color bunny. Also, binding always takes me much longer than I think it should.

This is the fabric I used for the backing.

Molly is quite disappointed with me. Not about my missing my deadline... She just hates a couch that multi-tasks.

Ringo Lake Mystery Fabric Selection

It's almost time for Bonnie Hunter's end of the year mystery. I joined in last year for the first time and enjoyed it quite a bit. Normally I avoid mystery quilts. But I changed the colors and that made it even more mysterious. I do like this year's combination...who doesn't enjoy turquoise and orange and/or turquoise and brown?

I am going with fuschia and chartreuse with black as my dark and white multi for the light.  It's following Bonnie's colors in the sense that she is using turquoise and coral, two complements or colors across from each other on the color wheel. And then she has strong darks and lights, with her complements having the same medium value. (My fuschia looks darker in the photo than it actually is).

The mystery project starts November 24th and you can find the instructions on Bonnie Hunter's website.

Sunday, November 12, 2017

In a Bind

Remember the doll quilts I'm trying to finish by...tomorrow. Well, they are quilted and ready for binding.

Is this where I sign up to participate in Fast Hand Stitching Sunday? If you want examples of better will want to go to Slow Sunday Stitching.

I just don't want to end up in the doghouse.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Pinwheel Review

I am using November to assess my various rainbow projects for the Rainbow Scrappy Challenge. Given our move across the country, there were some months that were more productive than others. I only have half the number of pinwheel blocks that I need. Plus I'm missing yellow/gold completely and definitely need more orange, pink and purple. (And this isn't the final layout so please ignore the misaligned block in the second row.)

I'm also trying to finish up doll and baby quilts for donations to my local quilt guild. And I don't know about you, but I'm not always open to trying out the latest and greatest methods when I have been using a perfectly adequate layering process for decades.

However apparently there is some newfangled 3D quilt layering process that is all the rage with younger quilters. I'm grumpy and refuse to learn anything new.

Meanwhile, I found these at an estate sale.

I found these too.

I will probably have to use this fabric as a backing so that the full design can be appreciated.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Left facing seahorses

Here are six new left-facing seahorses. Except as I write this, I notice that the orange seahorse has a terrible almost severed tail. In quilt terms, I forgot a flip triangle. And one might wonder how this could have gotten past the auditor.  Molly has moved on and is spending most of her time auditing my lap.

Hope this is not too gory for a quilting blog...but here is the orange seahorse mid-surgery. And yes, we did have some problems in the operating room when the bobbin ran out half way across the tiny flip triangle. You can see, the surgeon's work was particularly sloppy.

Unfortunately, the surgeon only cares what the patient looks like on the outside. Here is the orange seahorse recovering from surgery.

Meanwhile, the other seahorses are being evaluated after their nasty fall from the design wall.

At the same time, Buddy, our great dane puppy, likes rummaging around among the floor models.

Monday, November 6, 2017

New seahorse

I'm building more seahorses to finish the seahorse quilt. I need four more seahorses if I want a small quilt about 50 by 60 inches. I will need more if I go larger. In any case, I need equal numbers of left-facing seahorses and right-facing seahorses. I have a tutorial for right-facing seahorses but have neglected to make a left-facing tutorial.

So as I was making the new seahorse, I took pictures of its construction so I can write a tutorial.

However, every tutorial must be carefully audited by Molly which looks a lot like knocking pieces to the floor.

Saturday, November 4, 2017

Seahorse Surgery

These seahorses, participants in RSC 2016, are in the surgery recovery room.

These seahorses were an early version of the pattern and had a square tail. So I pulled out the square tail (1.25 inch square), added a flip triangle and now they all have pointy tails.

This took quite a bit of fiddling and hopefully you will find more exciting developments as RSC 2017 quilts come together.

And while my original Bernina 1630 is acting up, I have a stand-in so the show can go on.

And typically, I use my first sewing machine (from when I first started quilting in the early 80s) for machine quilting.

While I prefer an older sewing machine, I want my ironing surface to be state of the art.

And finally, if you have questions that have gone unanswered...consider whether you might have a "No-reply" status. Bonnie Hunter gives a nice tutorial for this for Google accounts.

Friday, November 3, 2017


It's that time of year when we are supposed to pull together our RSC challenge quilt tops. For me, that usually also means looking a couple years back and see what's been left by the wayside. And a year ago, I pulled out these seahorses, worked out a layout and then filed them away under "Move to Portland." Now that I'm here, I guess I should probably coral (corral?) them.

And it was over a month ago that I layered the DandyLion quilt. My accomplishment for today was to prepare the machine I use for machine quilting...yes, I changed the thread. And then Molly started tunneling under it with Buddy pouncing on her. And then there was probably a squirrel, but not of the quilting variety...

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Vintage Butterfly...Still

Here is one vintage butterfly block. At the beginning of the month, I thought I would be showing a finished vintage butterfly block. But instead, reality delivered one block. And my sewing machine was so disappointed in me, she developed a neurological disorder. Her needle starts off to the left instead of in the center. At first, she let me correct it, but now she is resisting me. I can't really complain because she has computerized parts from the 90s.

Here is the block with some of its new friends. If you would like to make butterfly or kaleidoscope friends, flutter over to Kaleidoscope of Butterflies monthly link-up.

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Friendship Star Variation Quilt Top

Ahem. This is the final result of Buddy's audit. Molly suggested that if I didn't want my blocks tossed around I should put them up on the design wall or sew them together.

So I sewed the blocks together and now have a baby quilt top instead of 36 cat toys.

Monday, October 30, 2017

Quilt Bureaucracy

I made more stars and laid them out on the design floor.  Molly did not appreciate disparaging comments about her accounting, so she has delegated this quilt to Buddy.

This task may be beyond his skill set. And yes, when he took the feline IQ (FIQ) test, he scored in the dog range. That said, he does understand three words in English:  treat, snack and toy (admittedly favorite dog words).

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Pink Pinwheels

Here are four pink pinwheel blocks, my last pink contribution to the Rainbow Scrappy Challenge. I thought I would jump ahead and lay out all the pinwheel blocks I've made so far...usually an activity for November.

Molly intervened and said no. There are no more blocks on the design wall, but Molly has a nice new nest.

Friday, October 27, 2017

Disappearing Stars

I originally fell in love with this pattern after seeing it on Cathy's blog Crazy by Design. She calls it Friendship Star Variation, but I am renaming it Disappearing Star. I cut 36 sets of star blocks to make a 36 inch square quilt using 6X6 star blocks. I have finished sewing them all and I am missing nine blocks!

Okay, we know that three went astray into a different pattern, but this means 6 must have exploded and disappeared into the night.

Here are the star parts to finally finish those last nine exploded stars.

Meanwhile, if you are following the traveling adventures of Barbara of Cat Patches, you may have seen her deny that cats are an invasive species. Despite her denial, I can assure you they are. This afternoon, Molly got up on the kitchen counter to invade the kitchen cupboard. She got into the cupboard and knocked her cat treats to the floor, where her dog Buddy promptly ripped open the bag and chowed down. (I caught Buddy the dog in action, but the invasive cat was nonchalantly sitting on a window ledge in the sewing room.)

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Small Quilt Progress

Here are the small quilts ready to be layered and quilted. This is my first time sharing on sew stitch snap SHARE. I noticed that this is where all the cool quilters link up and I thought I would sneak in. I hope no one notices how tipsy the quilt tops are on the design wall.

Sometimes there are forces in the sewing room that are beyond my control.

 Oh dear, the spiral log cabin did not pass inspection. Please ignore.

Here are the Friendship Star Variation blocks that I've made so far. I'm planning on 36 inches square or 6X6 blocks.

Monday, October 23, 2017


I showed a small doll quilt yesterday made from the remnants from this quilt. However, this quilt was also made from the sense that I started making blocks for a quilt that didn't work out as I planned, so like a squirrel, I buried the blocks for years. One day I uncovered them and made this quilt.

Which reminds me, a squirrel stopped by today and mentioned that it is the dog that had a short attention span, especially with a squirrel in view. He mentioned that squirrels are very industrious and have incredible focus. Molly was up napping on top of the fabric shelving, yelled SQUIRREL! and ran to the window.

Later, Molly helped me take a picture of the quilt top. This design wall has many layers so she got stuck between the flannel and the felt. On a second attempt, she ran up behind the quilt top and here she is assessing her performance.

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Squirrel Challenge

I am joining in with Gayle of Mangofeet's Squirrel-a-long. These are bunnies, not squirrels. However, these bunnies want to be a charity quilt for my quilt guild. These eight bunnies will make one small quilt.

And I found extra I-spy blocks and parts for another.

And these extra pieces are now put together with a border. Layering and quilting is the next step for this one.

And I am continuing to make the Friendship star variation. Except...

If you aren't careful, the friendship star variation varies and becomes a spinner, or maybe a fidgety quilter spinner. But in true squirrel fashion, I'm thinking that I should at least make four to see how well they play together.