Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Treadle Machine and More

    Not much quilting has been going on at my house but my sewing room has been a center of activity.  Monday I was preparing to host my GCQ Quilt Mavens Bee so my sewing room had to get straightened up a little.  I was inspired while watching Bonnie Hunter on Quilt Cam using her treadle sewing machine.  I opened up my grandmother's 1906 Singer treadle machine.  I dusted it off, put in a new needle and oiled some.  It sewed surprisingly well after sitting for about 15 years.  I thought it would be interesting for the ladies to try out at Bee. Several ladies said they had learned on a treadle machine like me.
Here Joan is treadling.

Tuesday morning was spent for GCQ comfort quilt sew day cutting quilt kits.  It was my birthday so I enjoyed relaxing in the evening.

Today was sew day for SQG.  Jan asked for help to sandwich another bargello quilt.  It is looking good.

Joan was machine sewing the binding on a colorful scrappy quilt.

In the afternoon I worked on more smocking.  I have about 2/3 done and one month to finish this one and a smaller version.  I better get busy.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

A Little Progress on Smocking

    Most of my time recently has been spent on smocking: however, I don't have much to show.   Here is a photo of my progress so far.  I have finished 4 half rows but have lots more to do.
I have to take breaks or I start to make mistakes when I get tired.  Then I sew a few scraps together for a scrap quilt.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Quilting On Hold For Smocking

   My quilting projects are on hold for right now so I can make matching smocked Easter dresses for my granddaughters.  I have pleated and blocked the front panels so they are ready.

I was trying to decide what colors to use in the smocking and my sister suggested I try some colors out to see what looked best so I pleated a scrap which I think I can use for a doll dress.  Irene thought green would be good for the background smocking but I don't think it shows up enough.  Then I tried purple which I like much better.  I still need to pick an accent color that will pop. I used purple as an accent on the green at the top and it blends too much.  I used yellow as an accent with the purple on the bottom.  I still plan to try out a bright pink with the purple.  

   After I really get to smocking, I may have to take some breaks for quilting.  
Happy Presidents' Day!  Check out some sales. 

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Machine Applique Class

     Some how I neglected to show the finished top for the machine applique class that I am offering through Midlands Tech- Haribson campus.  The class will be 4 evenings in August but I wanted to have the top to show so here it is.

It has turned edges using freezer paper and starch - not fused raw edge.  This is my favorite applique method for a neat look.   I  now have time to make another sample using different colors.
    Anyone interested in the class can find more info at

Another Finish

    I feel so good about finishing projects and scratching them off my list.  Yesterday I finished 2 more Valentine mug rugs.  I decided a new name for them could be "snack mat" since they are smaller than a placemat.

    This afternoon while watching some Netflix and then a little Bonnie Hunter webcam, I finished handsewing the binding onto the "orphan pinwheels no more".   I have not shown the last quilting I did of the borders so here are a couple of pictures.  I thought of grass as I quilted the floral border.  Probably not the best choice but it is not being taken out.  I used the walking foot to echo a few straight lines.

In the outer most border I changed to matching burgundy thread so it is not easy to see on the front.  On the back beige part you can see I  stitched free-motion what Leah Day calls Echo Shortcut.  I have used it on several quilts and like it.
   Here is the finish.  I like it especially because of all the different FMQ designs I used and the fact that I started with orphan blocks and planned a quilt around them.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Experimenting with Free-Motion Quilting Designs

     I was able to spend this afternoon free-motion quilting.  I tried out several designs on paper and on an outline drawing of the quilt I am working on before trying them on the quilt. My loops are uneven, but I am pleased with the overall look.  Here are 3 photos of various areas of the quilt.

The whole center is quilted.  All that is left is to quilt the border areas.  I'm still thinking on what to do there.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Valentine Mug Rugs

     While trying to decide on how I want to do the quilting on the “Orphan Pinwheels No More”, I pulled out my bin of scrap fabric that already has fusible web ironed to the back.  I made 2 Valentine mug rugs.  I actually made 3 but did not like one so it is in the scrap bin. I have a drawer full of a variety of bias tape so I wanted to use some for binding. I only made a little dent.

Note the very old package paper.  No telling how long I have had it or who had it before me.  After using the single fold bias tape on one, I decided it was too narrow.

I found a different design I liked in Card Art: Create Treasured Greetings from Fabric & Paper by Susan S. Terry.   I adapted it a little and made 6 more Valentine mug rugs all from scraps. There was very little pink in my fusible bin so the variety of colored hearts was great.  I was tempted to buy some Valentine fabric that was on sale but instead used only my stash for the backs.   These all have 2 layers of cotton batting so maybe they could also be used as oven mitts.  

I’m still thinking about how I want to do the quilting on the next quilt. 

Friday, February 1, 2013

Another Finish

     I finished hand sewing the binding onto the butterfly quilt.  I am so pleased with this small quilt, I am not ready to give it away.  I enjoyed trying the variety of free-motion quilting designs on it.

   I sandwiched the top that started from orphan pinwheel blocks.  Now it's at the "quilt as desired" stage but I have not decided how I want to quilt it.  I also started a couple of Valentine mug rugs so I may play with them while I think about how to quilt the other.