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Tuesday, June 18, 2019

International Sisters


Last winter, I was so delighted when Preeti asked me 
to test drive her African Queen block for her.
It was fun to make, 
quick, and quite simple to sew together. 




And when I didn't have any appropriate fabrics 
in my Tx stash to make more, 
she kindly sent me some of hers.  
(Thank you so much, Preeti.) 

So, I stitched up a few, kitted the rest, 
and brought them back to Canada to finish up during the summer.  
But one thing led to another, 
and I never took them out to work on them.
(You might remember that someone brought me
a bag of scraps and I got lost in them.)

Fast forward one year. 
I am so glad it worked out that way, 
because her African Queen adventure morphed into something bigger.  




If you haven't read about Preeti's International Sisters Blocks
do it now!  I'll wait!

Pretty cool, Right?  Not only does Preeti tell a good story, 
but quilters collaborating with quilters, 
even just through chatter, rock big time!  
What a wonderful idea!  I'm all in!
I can't stop making them!

I pulled my blocks out this week
because I needed to generate more neutral scraps 
to finish my scrap green 16-patch star quilt, 
shown in my last post.  
I like it when I can accomplish two things at one time.

In the meantime,
I completed my Sew Together Bag




with plenty of time to slip it into the mail.




Okay, I'll fess up.  There was no deadline.
It is a random, surprise gift for my very special Auntie.
I hope she likes it as much as I like mine.
It's unbelievable how much it will hold.
Crafty Daughter helped me pick out the fabrics.
I'm a lucky mom!

Now, if you just kept reading
and didn't check out Preeti's International Sisters post,
make sure you go there now!
Just click HERE!

We are finally having some sunny, warm weather!
Hope it hangs around.

Enjoy the rest of your week!
Thanks for stopping by for a visit.
~Karen




Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Making Progress


Oh, my goodness!
Another post, and so soon!
If I told you that it's because there is a heat register
under my desk and I'm cold,
would you believe me?

It is cold and rainy this morning,
but we just had four heavenly days in a row,
and instead of sewing, I was working in the yard,
so I'm glad for the break.

I did manage to sneak a little machine time in here and there,
so I will show you the progress I have made
on my June OMG project.


I am hoping to manage four more blocks from the scraps.
That might require a little extra piecing,
but that's okay.
When it's all quilted up, no one will notice.

Probably one of the smartest things I ever did
was to designate a 'just okay' quilt flimsy as a practice quilt.  
I would go from a small practice sample, 


to the practice quilt,
to the quilt I was working on for real.


It was a nice inbetween step from little to huge!
Point is, it's not only finished, but it's already in the mail,
3-1/2 years later.
You can see it and read about it here and here,
because I couldn't wait out the weather any longer
and never did get a 'finished' photo.
Sorry about that!

But, I do have a photo of a finish to share.
A former student of Crafty Daughter's,
now a colleague,
is a retired disabled vet
and a very deserving recipient of my first ever 
(scrappy) QOV.


She's in the white t-shirt.
On Good Friday, we had her  over for a late lunch.
My SIL prepared a delicious pulled pork dinner
AND cleaned up after!
He's such a dear!

Last but not least,
I always have a leader/ender project.
These green blocks were pieced in 2013.


I thought it was time to finish them up.
I have 20 of them to surround with neutrals,
and am half way there.

My goal for today is to complete a few steps 
on a Sew Together Bag,
a very special gift, if it ever gets finished!
So, off I go!

Hope you have a wonderful. funderful day!
~Karen










Tuesday, June 4, 2019

One Monthly Goal/June

Hello, everybody!

   No, I did not fall off the face of the earth.  
I just lost my blogging mojo.  
And you know how it goes.....the longer you put something off, 
the more difficult it is to do.  Well, it's been 6 months
and I thought Patty's OMG 
would be a good way to ease myself back in.

   My goal is to use up all my scraps of B&W, W&B fabrics.  
Here is what I have so far. 




I started on June 1 and have made two a day.  
By the end of the month, my desire is to have a flimsy 
of substantial size, 
and no more black and white scraps.  
I will just sew until I run out.


The Maritime Modern Quilt Guild, out of Halifax, Nova Scotia, 
is having an executive challenge.
The rules are to use black and white, with a pop of color.  
One color.  
Well, my intentions were noble, 
but I just couldn't seem to restrict myself to one color.

The pattern is called B&W by Kim Schaefer
and is available for free from Andover Fabrics.
I only changed fabric placements 
because I'm not working with yardage.

So, there you have it. 
Stop in to 


to see who else has linked up with one monthly goal.

~karen

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

For Every Action, There is a ... Reaction


I'm not sure anymore if my desire to sew little pieces of fabric together is a passion or an obsession, but it’s all I want to do.  I have completed my pre-migration south 'must finish' list, so I have a couple of extra weeks to just play, sort, organize, and pack away my sewing mess.  This is often when I make blocks I've always wanted to try but never took the time for.

Action:  Motivated by Tish's Adventures in Wonderland to buckle down and tame my stash/scraps, I unearthed the first bin to work through.  Slightly larger than a shoebox, it's been taking up space for quite a few years, containing leftover layer cake fabrics and scraps from a Connecting Threads' kid's quilt kit that I made 8 or 9 years ago.  Sorry, no picture to show it was stuffed full.

Reaction:  But instead of cutting it up into more manageable pieces for storage purposes, I ended up cutting it all up and sewing it back together.


 


This quilt was inspired by the Knee Socks Quilt Block 
that Elizabeth Hartman designed 
for the Modern Quilt Guild a number of years ago.
I have always wanted to try it.




I am straight line quilting it, FMQing a row of ribbon candy 
in one strip per block to break it up.  It's kind of tedious, so it's going slowly.
But I'm loving it!




And that led to this.  Not scraps, but charm packs.  I thought, "Why can't I do the same thing with some of those charm packs that have almost rooted to the shelves?  I rarely use them, except for applique, because they aren't really and truly 5" square and it frustrates me to work with them.




And here's a little closer look, just so you can see I used text fabric as my background.




Two charm packs will give you a pretty good size.  I only used 63 charms because there wasn't an equal amount of solids, and it will end up being 40.5" x 49.5".  I cut each charm into 3 pieces measuring 2.5", 1.5", and 1".  I used 40" of text print.

At this rate, I will never tame and organize my scraps and leftovers,
but I am sure having fun!

Hope you are, too!
XO.
karen



Thursday, November 8, 2018

Be Still my Beating Heart


Early every morning, I sit quietly with my cup of coffee and take a lovely scroll through Quiltland, checking blogs, following links, literally falling down the rabbit hole.  I am an early morning person and this jaunt really motivates and inspires me, and sometimes gets my quilting juices bubbling so rapidly, I don’t even finish my coffee before I’m sitting at my sewing machine, stitching away.  


Luna Lovequilts - Flashback - A Memphis style quiltYesterday morning,
during my leisurely scroll
down Piecemaker Lane,
I saw this quilt
by Luna Lovequilts
and the needle on
my Quilt Meter went berserk! 
It made my head spin. 



Even if you aren't into modern quilts,
you'll want to pop over to
not only to
check this out and see a full size picture,
but to read about her inspiration.

Way to go, Sophie!
You've nailed it!
Good luck with your QuiltCon submission!

XO,
Karen


Saturday, November 3, 2018

Finishing Up, Getting Ready to Go

(Click on pictures to make larger)

I have been winding down my summer island sewing adventure, getting ready for my annual fall migration, and have been working on a very scrappy granny square quilt.  These blocks were made every once in awhile over the last couple of years, and when Crafty Daughter asked for a quilt for her guest room bed, I decided it was time to make good use of this collection of blocks. 




I had accumulated over 30 blocks, and thought that was pretty good, until I did the math.  For a twin size quilt I’d need quite a few more!  But, by adding sashing, I could reduce that number, so I got to work and kept adding to the pile during the summer.  I kept the quilting pretty simple.



The scraps are rather randomly selected, and individually, are quite ugly.  But all together, they aren’t too, too bad.  With the addition of some quilting, it looks pretty good in person!  You see, my daughter has multiple cats who love the quiet, safe space that a seldom used guest room affords, so the request was to make a quilt that wouldn’t show cat fur.  Hmmmmm.  I think that was the deciding factor for choosing these blocks.  It just a scrap quilt, right?  A utility quilt.

Well, scraps or not, it’s still a lot of work!


My time is short, so I took advantage of the quiet before the storm,
to lay it out on the deck to spray baste.
This Texas Star Spangled BOM quilt was almost ready
to come off  the Janome 




and I wanted to be prepared to start quilting granny squares right away!

Guess what?  
Spray basting doesn't work when it’s only 46*F outside.


There has been a bit of chatter out there regarding free quilt patterns hurting the sales of commercial patterns.  I just can’t help but throw in my 2 cents worth, as an everyday, run of the mill quilt maker and consumer of Quilty goodness.  If I see a free quilt pattern that I like, I will make it.  If I see a commercial pattern that I just can't live without, I will buy it.  (Herein lies the problem, I have purchased so many quilt patterns, I can't possibly make them all!  So, I have to really, reallly, realllly need that pattern to buy it!)  IMHO, the market is flooded.  With both.  And don't forget magazines and books.  But, offering a free pattern on the internet is not going to impact sales. 

There, I feel better.  It's not as if quilt designers visit my blog.  Well, not many, anyway.  

I'll finish up by showing you the wallet I made
for Crafty Daughter's birthday.




(A purchased pattern!) 

This is a Mini Diva Wallet by Sew Many Creations.  I thought it would be difficult.  
But it was fun!
(Thanks, Linda, for supplying the pretty fabric.  
Crafty Daughter absolutely loves it!)

Now I"m off to make some binding.  
Enjoy your weekend.
I'm pretty excited to get an extra hour tomorrow morning!
Wish I could have an extra hour every morning.
Mornings are my favorite time of day.

XO,
karen


Monday, October 22, 2018

It’s a Wrap!


One more finish!
It was so much fun to FMQ,
I was sorry when it was finished,
and couldn't wait to get the next flimsy under the needle.




A free pattern at RJR by Wendy Sheppard




Measuring 56 x 74", my version is a little smaller than the original,
because I was using left over Free Spirit solids,
and ran out of pieces large enough to grow it any bigger.

Wendy's was quilted with swirls, but when I practiced them
on a smaller quilt, they were pure torture.
The smaller practice quilt looked great when completed,
but I am much happier with a more custom quilted look.
And it was a lot more fun to do!


FMQ turns a flimsy into a beautiful quilt,
but when I was reading a few blog posts this morning,  
I was struck by this photo found at Luna Lovequilts,
and my first thought was
that you don't need fancy FMQ 
to make a beautiful quilt!




It may be October, but trust me, Christmas is just around the corner.  
If you need unique little gifts for any of your Quilty friends, 
Crafty Daughter still has retractable scissor keeps in her little Etsy shop.



For me, using a retractable scissor keep is such a convenience.




I don't think I could operate effectively without mine.
No more wandering around the house, wondering where did I set my scissors last.




It especially keeps them off the floor when I am free motion quilting
because there is no room for anything else but the quilt.
And it takes up a lot of space!

She has a variety of designs other than scissors.
Mine is a colorful dog print.
There are only 3 scissor designs left,
but I have it on good authority that she can make more.

And, although no longer listed,
it probably wouldn't take much to encourage Crafty Daughter
to make you a decal or two.



Here is one she made me,
on a Dollar Store cup
and what lovely meaningful, yet inexpensive, gifts
you could make!
Just visit her Etsy shop and send her a quick convo!
Most ship for just the cost of a postage stamp.
She will even design a custom decal for you.

Speaking of custom,
I never showed you the cookies I made this summer
for a young friend's nautical wedding reception.



I hadn't made cookies in a couple of years,
so they were a fun challenge.
She only wanted 50, and at about 45, 
the anchors started looking good.
Hmmm.