Thursday, May 31, 2012

Making Progress on the Vine

    I feel good about the vine and leaves now.  I narrowed the vine to ½” so it curves better and I’m using fewer leaves.  Two sides are ready to appliqué down.  I would like to find a variegated green that looks good on the vine and leaves so I won’t have to change thread.  I probably should have appliquéd the vine before I cut the border length.  I hope it won’t shrink too much.  I will use an iron on tear away stabilizer and that should help.

A new 18” doll now lives at my house.  She arrived wearing a dress but no underpants so today I quickly made 2 pair.  I used a Simplicity pattern; but instead of sewing a casing for elastic like the directions said, I used Nancy Zieman’s technique of turning up the fabric and zigzagging down the stretched elastic. It worked well and was a lot quicker.  

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Working with Vine and Leaves

    A few of my family members got together for an early enjoyable Memorial Day picnic with Mom at the PH. 

This morning sister Irene headed home.  We have had needed rain off and on much of the day.  I spent some time making a long roll of vine and played some with placement.  I am not sure how much I want the vine to curve or how many leaves I want or where.  I plan to play with a few different plans before stitching it down. 

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Sew Day at Church

     It feels good to have a good workday and accomplish a lot.  Joan was free piecing blocks from scraps. 

Bonney laid out all her fan blocks and started sewing rows together.  This is one she plans to give to the VA Hospice unit.

Gail started quilting with her new walking foot. This is the first quilt she has quilted herself.

I free pieced squares.

After lunch I worked on duck blocks.  Last year I cut 2 kits the same.  One was finished then. I got tired of this kit sitting unfinished. 

Now I am ready to work some more on leaves for floral pinwheel border.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Working on Appliqué Leaves

   The week has flown by and not much quilting was done.  I did find time to shorten the length and hem of 4 knit shirts – one for Mom and 3 for me.   I have discovered that using a double needle makes a great hem on knits.  It looks similar to serger flat lock stitch.  There are double rows of straight stitching on the top and a zigzag on the back side.  I also use narrow strips of water-soluble stabilizer under the shirt as I’m stitching.

The center of the floral pinwheel quilt is together.

 It went together without any problems, just lots of careful pressing.  Notice all the little pinwheels on the back at seam junctions. 

Today I started cutting and preparing leaves for the appliqué inner border.  I plan on using 4 fabrics for the leaves and a different fabric for the vine.   I cut out about 60 today but I’m not sure how many I will need. 

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Cotton Theory Trivet and Pinwheel Progress

      Tuesday was guild day and after the regular meeting, a member instructed us as we made a potholder or trivet using the Cotton Theory quilting method.   It has 2 good sides.  Here is mine finished.

I have seen Betty Cotton demonstrate her techniques several times on “Sewing with Nancy” and have wanted to try it.  Now that I have, I don’t know that I will do any more.  I have a lot of respect for the work that it took for Clara or anyone to make a full size bed quilt using this method.  It takes a tremendous amount of preparation cutting the top and backing fabric pieces as well as the batting pieces.

     I’m making progress on the floral pinwheel quilt.  I started laying out pinwheel blocks but my design wall is not large enough.  I thought about laying them on the floor but decided to use the guest bed as my design area instead.  This gives you an idea. 

I also tried grouping the colors but I think they should be mixed up.  
Update:  Here are 36 blocks laid out on the guest bed.  I will leave them for a couple of days so that I can look at them several times and see if I need to move some around. 

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Wedges and Wheels

My Bernina was not ready to return home so I worked more with wedges.  I became interested in working on a wheel when I saw P’s scrappy string rings at “The Way I Sew It”     “Material Obsession”  also has a great big one.

I started yesterday at church sew group pulling scrap strips.  At home I cut a few more.  I only had enough of the same scraps to make 3 – 18” strip sets.  I figured that would not be enough for wedges for a whole wheel so I cut solid fabric strips to fill in.  This is what I came up with. 

My wedge is 9 degrees so it takes 10 wedges for 90 degrees or 1 quarter of the wheel.  When I sew a quarter of the wheel, I check that the two edges form a 90 degree angle.  A couple needed some very minor trimming. 

I pieced 1 complete and ¾ of a wheel.  I do have 2 pieced wedge pieces left which I probably won't use unless I change the layout angle.  I cut a background about 42 by 58” to test.  The wheels are not attached yet.  They will be machine appliquéd.   I don’t know what kind of centers I will add.  Any suggestions?  

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Not Much Sewing Going On

      This has been one of those weeks when not much actual sewing gets done.  Monday I went with my mother for a doctor’s appointment and then dropped my Bernina off at the shop to be serviced.  I spent a few hours pressing and cutting scraps into 2 ½” strips and strings.  I have been hoping to find the time to piece a string quilt.   Last week for our church quilt group trunk show Beverley showed off her lovely string top. 

      Tuesday was GCQ Day Bee.  I enjoyed the morning with the girls but did not take my camera so have no photos to share.  Lari had not had time to prepare the next step of our mystery quilt so I don’t have to worry about that. 

     Today was church quilt group and I was asked to help 3 ladies sandwich their quilt tops.  I did not take my camera again.  I’m sorry because they all working on wonderful quilts.  You will have to wait until they get them quilted and then I will be sure to take photos.  I pulled out some scrap strips and started piecing strip sets to play with my wedge ruler to create circles.  I think I will add some solid wedges since I don’t have enough pieced wedges for a whole circle. 

     Tomorrow I should be able to pick up my Bernina and get back to my regular project.  I prefer to use the same machine to complete a project because my quarter inch seam is more consistent that way. 

Saturday, May 5, 2012

Pinwheel Progress

      It has been awhile since I made much progress on the floral pinwheel quilt but today a good bit was accomplished.  I needed 20 more floral pinwheel blocks so I have been working on them the past few days.  I cut all the fabric, marked the pieces and stitched 80 HST units. 

 14 pinwheel blocks got finished today which leaves only 6 to be done.  Then I can start laying out the center for stitching and start on the inner appliquéd border.  There is still a good bit yet to be done but I’m making progress.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Trunk Show for Church Group

     Today was the day for our church group of quilters to present a trunk show for a group of retirees.  Joan had worried that we would not have enough to take up the time but we had plenty.

  Joan as our leader started us off and closed up.

Several of us had made mug rugs ( A mug rug is a small quilt designed just big enough for a mug and a small snack.)  so at the end of our program, I drew numbers to give them away. 

Here is Bonney with one of her early quilts.

      The past few days beside getting ready for the trunk show I have been cutting and marking squares to finish up all the floral pinwheels that I need.  I need 20 more.  They are all cut and marked.  Tomorrow will be sewing time.