Saturday, September 1, 2018

Lasting Impressions

Well, hello September!  
I tried to slip this post in yesterday,
but it interfered with my nap.

Do you ever wonder what people remember about you?  Twenty-odd years ago, before Joann Fabrics went the impersonal superstore route and instead, had intimate little stores throughout the local communities, when customers counted, when staff were knowledgeable, I worked there part time for about three years for fun.  And it was fun.  We were a little family.

Last spring, while I was spending time in Massachusetts, I ran into one of the women I worked with. She was one of the few who continued to work for the company after they closed down all their stores and opened the one big one that was too far away for most of us to commute to (or shop at).  When I asked her if she remembered me, she said, “Oh, yes!  When I was getting ready to make my first quilt, a log cabin, everyone said I had to use red for the centers of my block, but I didn’t want to.  You said it was my quilt, and I could use any color I wanted to!”

Hearing that memory made my day!  I like that I made that lasting impression!

I don’t think I’ve ever made a log cabin quilt.  But JulieKQuilts has started Log Cabin Loonies, and since I had a little pile of 1” strips left over from making arrows, I decided to join in.

My goal is to make 16 of these 4” log cabin blocks to make into another pillow for the annual nursing home initiative sponsored by one of the members of the Maritime Modern Quilt Guild in Halifax.  This isn't necessarily the final layout.  I added one more block after I took this picture this morning.

As well, I’ve been using up more flying geese triangles to make another pillow similar to the one I showed in my last post, only opposite placement of colors.

It takes 64 2.5" squares to make a 16" pillow top.

The first pillow top came out great!  

I have less than 20 arrows to make before I can wrap up this challenge.
I'm growing quite weary of these fabrics,
and I am more than ready to move on!

My scrappy churn dash blocks by Crazy Mom Quilts
continue to grow in number.

Someday they'll make a beautiful quilt.

I say someday because I will be linking up with 

to celebrate the almost completion of an 11 year old UFO.
Don't judge me!  There are extenuating circumstances.  
Maybe not exactly extenuating.

Eleven years ago, I started a signature quilt 
to commemorate my sister's 25th wedding anniversary.  
I thought it might be nice if she rec'd it one day.

I constructed each block from randomly placed scraps 
to measure 18.5" unfinished and hand quilted them.  
Fat quarters only measure 18" wide, just saying!

And I've just finished QAYGing them together.  
The binding will go on today.

I kept the quilting pretty simple.

Lots of hugs and kisses.

My sister and her husband are naturalists like me,
so I tried to reflect that in the fabrics I chose for each block back.

For example, bugs and butterflies...

Point?  Eventually, I finish everything!  
Some projects take a little lot longer than others.
I'm certain, in this case, Little Sister will be pleased.

And on that note, I leave you with some hummingbird tidbits.
They are getting ready to head south
and are frequenting the feeders more often.
With this heat, I've been changing their hummingbird juice almost daily.

Here is a picture of the rare Northern Black Hummingbird.

Not my picture.  Someone tweeted it a while back.
Enjoy the long weekend!
Stay safe!



canuckquilter said...

That's such a wonderful story. It does not surprise me that you left such a positive impression. You are positive and encouraging all around blogland and social media. Thank you for that! Great use of little leftover pieces for the pillows. And congratulations on finishing that special UFO. No time judging over here!

julieQ said...

What a wonderful bunch of quilts you have ongoing!!! Love your tiny log cabin sweet of you to donate your finished produce!! Such a pleasure, always, to read your blog!

Karen - Quilts...etc. said...

OMG I love that bear/hummingbird!!how wild is that to look out your window to enjoy bird watching and see that humongous bear instead. Love all your quilts - it might take awhile to get some quilts made but sometimes we eventually finish them - and sometimes not - I started my Love Entwined quilt 5 years ago I really loved it when I saw it and wanted to make a great historic quilt but after only 3 months I totally lost interest in it and wasn't even sure if I liked it any more - I'm not even done with the center of the quilt - it needs 3 more bouquets and then maybe I can use it for a wall hanging - trouble is I haven't even picked it up to work on in about 3 years now!! Your sister well get her quilt one day - right? :)

marebear said...

Very lovely...I always enjoy log cabin blocks.

Bob Bushell said...

I love your quilts and each one a wonderful design. And I love the rare Northern Black Hummingbird.

Sondra said...

So many cool projects on your front and back burner, and each one sublime on it's own accord! Love the bear sipping sugar cute.

Binsa said...

Enjoyed your post Karen and seeing the unusual hummingbird at the feeder

Anonymous said...

Hi Karen lovely work my friend ,and omg i freaked out when i saw the pic of the bear,glad it wasnt at your place.

Sheila said...

You made my evening with all your scrappy goodness , love all the projects and your sister will be thrilled with her quilt ! It doesn't surprise me in the least that you had a lasting impression on your friend , you are just that kind of person, in one word Special ♥️

Maria said...

Always enjoy reading your fun posts.
Great job getting your sisters quilt finished...
Oh! you put red in the centre of your Log cabin blocks!!!!

kiwikid said...

Love the black northern hummingbird, but it might need a larger feeder 😅😅😅😅
The pillow covers are beautiful, you are so generous making those for others. The quilt for your sister is fantastic.

Linda said...

You have made lasting impressions on many people. I am sure of that. Your determination to finish what you start has rubbed off on me. I have a quilt top that is probably almost 20 years old now and I plan on finishing that next.
Your sister's quilt is amazing and so are you.

FlourishingPalms said...

Hey there, Karen! You've gotta slow down! Go back and take a nap! You've been very busy lately! The pillows are so great for a donation - obviously not quite as intense as a quilt, though you've managed to almost make it so (64 blocks!). And I love where your churn dash quilt is heading. The variety of block sizes make it so interesting. Good for you to be back at an old UFO, no matter how old it is! Sis will love it. Must tell you that I was affiliated with a fabric store in my younger years. Though I didn't actually work at Northwest Fabrics, I was friends with the manager and got to sew all my young daughter's clothes for free. I could pick a pattern, fabric, and notions - planning well in advance - and the garments were hung in the store for two months before being returned to me. Remember those good old days of seeing made garments displayed?! Times have definitely changed; not for the better. Hope you're having a great weekend!

Karen S said...

I think it is wonderful that someone remembered you that way. So very special. It goes to show we really never know what impression we leave with people.
Love seeing all your stitching progress but I think I will avoid your hummingbirds!

Needled Mom said...

That is a cute Joann's story. I love those wee log cabin blocks and those churn dash blocks are going to make a great finish too.

The anniversary quilt will be cherished at all time. Working on old UFOs is like meeting up with old friends.

Love the black hummingbird!!

Createology said...

Welcome to September and Fall is in the air. With cooler temps it will be easier to work on those larger fabric quilts as they help keep us cozy. I do remember the good ol’ days of smaller stores with friendly knowledgable staff and YOU definitely are the person to make a lasting positive impression with your lovely helpful and generous soul. Your pillows for charity are very special...just like you dear. That is a very rare Hummingbird indeed. September Sewing Bliss...<3

Louise said...

Ha ha ha!! The hummingbird cracked me up :D

Your sister's quilt is so bright and happy. I'm sure she'll love it and won't she be surprised! All those signatures will bring back happy memories for her, just as your coworker's words did for you. I'm glad to hear that you're enjoying your stitching. How fast you sew ain't nobody's business but yours :)

Fiona said...

so that hummingbird likes sweet treats! haha.. great picture. I love your signature quilt and well done with it... no judgement as I'm sure there are many of us who have UFO's even longer than that. It's a beautiful quilt and I love all the thoughtful detail.... such tiny log cabins and the other beautiful pillows you are making...

Susan said...

Love your hummingbird population! LOL The story that goes with your sister's quilt needs to be written on the label. That's a quilt worth waiting for, so I'm glad it's finished. Some things need to age like fine cheddar. =) Your pillows are great, and what a fabulous cause. And I always like Crazy Mom ideas, so that churn dash is wonderful in my book. That's one I still haven't done yet, though. What a great post, so many interesting things going on.

Lin said...

I am sure your sister will be delighted with her quilt and I love the backing fabrics. Cute little log cabins and your pillows look great. Love the hummingbird picture. xx

Carol- Beads and Birds said...

Oh gee, you brought back memories. I used to work in the Singer store in the mall. i often wonder how I will be remembered. I'm pretty insecure and worry that it will be only the worst in me. Most clerks that work in the big stores don't know a thing about fabric or sewing. My favorite LQS just closed. I loved that place. There is a peace to be found wandering around a smaller store filled with wonderful fabrics and knowledgeable people who share the same love of the place that you have. I'd rather shop one line from a QS than travel to Joann's.
xx, Carol

Caryl @ cinnamon holiday workshop said...

So glad you are joining in with the log cabin blocks. I enjoyed reading this block and lots of nice photos!

Ann said...

What a wonderful post, Karen. I used little logs for scrap quilts for quite a while. Your photo brings back memories. You will have so much fun with these blocks. And then your other quilts. Congratulations on finishing the quilt for your sister. It's a beauty.
The pillow tops are lovely, too. I'm glad someone else tries to use up all of the fabrics from a pull at once.
You are a UFO busting champ.

Tish Stemple said...

Northern Black Hummingbird! I almost did a spit take when I read that :) It is never too late to finish a UFO. I love that you did the hand quilting as a quilt as you go. I don't think I've ever seen someone do that before, but it's a wonderful idea!

Karen said...

Even reading this post a second time, I *STILL* laughed out loud at your Northern Black Hummingbird *-) Your sister's quilt is beautiful, and she will love it. Good thing you spend part of your year in Canada, where our Fat Quarters are 20"!

Allie said...

*snort* interfered with my nap - I can so relate, lol!! Your blocks are just gorgeous. Gorgeous finish - and hey, my first quilt took 25 years to complete, no judging here, lol!! Love the quilting on it, and the choice of fabrics - very meaningful!
Quite the largest and furriest hummingbird I've ever seen, lol.....yikes!

helenjean@midgetgemquilts said...

You made me laugh when I saw interfered with your nap. I'm about to doze off now , at 3pm
I started an autograph quilt for my late mother in laws 80th birthday . She lived until she was 90 and died exactly 8 years ago this weekend. Time I finished this ? I think so

helenjean@midgetgemquilts said...

Ps I nearly read naturist for naturalist !

Preeti said...

Interfered with your nap? You take naps?? In addition to sleeping at night??? Aren't you spoiled? I just wish for a good night's sleep and even that eluded me last night. Alas!!! On the upside, I do not have 11-year old UFOs in my stash. Forgive my snarkiness. I am sleep-deprived. I'll take the pillow right now. Will it soothe my frazzled nerves? I wish I dream of the colorful churn dash squares. I'd make a few of those with black background - just to be whimsical. That is one lucky sister. The naturalist in you is really an optimist who sees hummingbirds everywhere - like Bill Gates (when informed that the world is coming to an end) said - Great news, we do not have to update Windows.

Julie said...

Procrastinating is normal here. I read your post the day it was published, yet it's taken how long to come back to. :-{ You have been doing so much good work on the UFOs, and things for the nursing home. You're a good person! I am glad to see your progress on some personal things too. It's a delicate balance to keep yourself inspired.

Frédérique said...

Beautiful quilts, and this story about the woman is so sweet! You are such a nice person. Love the picture with the rare black bird ;))

Cheryl said...

What a great story and wonderful lesson about choosing colors they you like versus what is "right". Great looking works in progress.

Raewyn said...

I've had such a lovely catch up read of your blog this morning - so chatty and with lots of interesting titbits inserted along the way. I enjoy all the projects you are working on and of course it's tempting to be inspired and set myself up with a new project based on your lovely photos and links! But no, I must stay focussed for now :-)

Judy said...

Haha, I love that black hummingbird!! Thanks for the laugh for today :-) Gosh, your projects look great. I love your memory from working in Joanns, and telling the person it's her quilt. That's awesome and so true. Life is short. Create what makes you happy. I love the pillows, and the thought of giving them away to brighten someone's day.
Happy sewing,

Sandra Walker said...

LOL on the bear. My friend John who lives in upstate New York, often has bears visiting his yard...we had moose, fox, deer a-plenty in our Alberta yard, but no bears. Here in southern Ontario, nothing bigger raccoons and possums...or are they opossums... I refilled my hummingbird feeder again yesterday as they were buzzing around and emptied it! Haven't noticed them today, though it's gone down a bit. Super-hot here, like AC weather, 27C/80F and humid out the yin yang, but cooling off somewhat toward the end of the week. Love your triangles; I save mine too, should make a pillow! Gorgeous sister quilt, and yeah I'm with you; I finish everything too, just some take a little longer! Hand-quilted, wow. A runner took me like 10+ years to finally finish, so I cannot imagine (30?) how many I'd take for a big quilt!