Monday, December 30, 2013

Sewing on Celtic Solstice

   This is the week for Celtic Solstice Mystery Step 5 and a more challenging unit.  I used the Easy Angle ruler so cutting was not difficult.   My sewing was slower and more careful because of bias edges.  As Bonnie suggests, I have only finger pressed and the triangles fit together great. 

Even though only part of my step 5 units are finished, I am excited by the possibilities with these units.  This is my first mystery with Bonnie and I am loving it.  While anxious to see what new unit Bonnie has planned and how they will be used, like others I could not help playing with the units. 

While I have used several fabrics in each color family, my choices are much more tone-on-tone than Bonnie usually chooses so I hope that will not detract from my result.

Check out what others are doing at Bonnie’s CelticSolstice Mystery Link-Up Party.

      When I needed a break from chain sewing the triangle units, I worked on another potholder.

I enlarged the pattern and used fusible web so my picture is reversed. 

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Bunny Wall-hanging Finished

      Last night TV time and a few minutes this morning were spent hand sewing the back binding so that the bunny wall-hanging is finished and another UFO can be marked off my list.

I have made great progress the past 2 months in finishing my UFOs.  The only problem is that I keep finding more orphan blocks as I organize.  
     This afternoon I need to get busy on the next step for Bonnie's Celtic Solstice Mystery so I can keep up and it won't become a UFO.  

Friday, December 27, 2013

Quilting on UFO

      This bunny wall-hanging is almost finished after many years.  I adopted this unfinished project from a friend.  I just need to hand stitch the binding which I plan to work on tonight.  I used this project to practice a variety of free-motion quilting designs. 

Around the bunny’s head I free-motion quilted Leah’s  LoopyDoopy Spiral  
Around the dress top I divided the area as Cindy Needham suggests and quilted a variety of designs to fill the spaces. 

 Around her feet I free-motion quilted Leah’s EchoShortcut.  I really enjoy this design as a background filler. 

The middle border is quilted with a simple vine which is very hard to see. It shows up better on  the back. 

In the outer border I quilted free-formed feathers.  I only marked the spine.  They are not perfect but I am very pleased with the look.

I am linking up with Leah Day’s page so hope you check out what others have been working on this week. 

Monday, December 23, 2013

Celtic Solstice Step 4

Bonnie planned well for the holiday activity.  With all the busyness, this week was the easiest step so far -sewing 4 patches.  

Even though I sew with a quarter-inch foot, I did some sliver trimming so my blocks will finish a perfect 3”.  I would rather sliver trim than have them too small. 

Step 4 is ALL finished.

I even had time to work more on step 2: 80 chevrons finished - 40 more to piece.

I have followed Bonnie’s advice so I stopped working on one step to start the new step.  My step 1 needs some work also; but when Bonnie is ready for us to start putting units together, I should have enough to see how this mystery will turn out. 

I’m linking up so you can check out how others are working on Bonnie’s Celtic Solstice Mystery quilt.  I enjoy seeing how some have chosen different colors .  You can also download the directions for later if you don't want to work on this now.  

Friday, December 20, 2013

Finished Before Christmas

      It is getting close to Christmas and the end of the year.  I made a couple of last minute potholders as gifts and got them in the mail.   I like the pocket for your hand.

I pulled out a comfort quilt already sandwiched and quilted so that it will be finished and off my UFO list before the new year. 

I decided to simply meander the middle section instead of trying out a new design.  I did quilt a leafy vine in the border.  This is the back.  It doesn’t show enough from the front with yellow thread. 

*  Update - instead of writing another post, I decided to update this one.  I only had the binding to add and finished this morning. 

Part 4 of Celtic Solstice is up this morning so I will take some time for that.  I’m glad Bonnie chose  easy 4 patches for this week. 

I also linked up with Leah Day's FMQ Friday  .

Monday, December 16, 2013

Finished Celtic Solstice Step 3

     Wow ! I feel great that I actually have step 3 finished.  This was the easiest step so far.  Bonnie always gives several great suggestions for techniques to accomplish the step.   I happened to have printed paper sheets from Quiltime  ( ).  I used them last year on a project that needed hundreds of 1 ½” finished HSTs.  I found them easy to use and accurate so I pulled out my left over papers and got to work.

It made for a fast easy process so my 25 pinwheels are pieced and I have all the rest of the HSTs waiting for more directions.  Loving the parts and can't wait to see how they all come together.

You can see more of what others are doing with Bonnie's Celtic Solstice mystery and/or join in. 

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Little of This and That

    This has been a week for all types of holiday gatherings and all types of sewing.  I have made some progress on units for Bonnie's Celtic Solstice Mystery with some revisions to my piecing strategy.  I also had to correct my pressing according to her directions.
I sandwiched a quilt but I won't start quilting this week.   I sewed a t-shirt for my youngest granddaughter and appliqued a dog.  She LOVES dogs.

Last night I pieced a couple of holiday mug rugs using scraps and quilted them this morning.
I still need a few small gifts and am looking for more quick sewing ideas.  

I need to take some time to clean and decorate the house and I usually do holiday baking so I doubt much sewing will get done until after Christmas.
Wishing you ALL a safe Merry Christmas 
and Happy New Year !  

Monday, December 9, 2013

Step 2 Bonnie’s Celtic Solstice Mystery

     After a few days with family out of town, Sunday I finally got around to tackling step 2 of Bonnie’s Celtic Solstice Mystery.  I am a faithful Bonnie follower; however, this is my first mystery with her and 2” units are not in my stash so I had a lot of cutting to do with still more to go.  This step was pretty time consuming for me with the additional time to mark the diagonal line on each of 400  2” squares ( 200 neutral and 200 yellow) and I need the line.  I have only completed a couple of dozen so far but I’ve got the rest of the week before the next clue.

If you have not started, it is not too late.  Check out  the progress of others here

Monday, December 2, 2013

Quiltville’s Celtic Solstice Mystery

    I recently finished quilting 2 UFO projects and even though I have several more on my UFO list, I felt the need to spend some time on a piecing project.   Friday when Bonnie posted the first clue, I decided to join in her Celtic Solstice Mystery.  I have followed Bonnie Hunter for years; however, this is my first mystery quilt with her.  I don’t want it to become another UFO.  My success rate with mystery quilts and round robins is pretty good so I have hope.  I don’t have 92 orange or 96 neutral units pieced yet but I have made a good start. I have cut several blues and neutrals but I need more oranges.

This is also my first time linking up. Check it out at

I hope some more of my guild members will also participate in Bonnie’s newest mystery. It would be fun to share as we work and see them together when finished. 

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Lone Star Finish

   With a lot of football on TV, I watched multiple episodes on Netflix while I hand sewed binding and tonight my lone star if finished.  That makes 2 UFOs checked off my list.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Free Formed Feathers Plus

      Recently I have been practicing free-motion feathers marking only the spine. Leah Day has a feather filler that looks really interesting, but I have not tried to fill a large area with multiple feathers, only triangles in my Pina Colada quilt.   

A couple of days ago I luckily found Angela Walters’ photo tutorial for sketching feathers
I loved the look of her feathers which appear similar to Leah’s, only larger.  I wanted to try some on my lonestar quilt.  First I practiced on paper and plexiglass placed over the area of my quilt where I wanted the quilting.

This morning when I checked my email, I read about viewing free videos by Sharon Schamber at “The Quilt Show”.  They are free this holiday weekend.   Her work is much more detailed but I decided to try some on this same quilt. 
Episode 1 - Longarm and Domestic Eastern Henna Stipples (Heart and Butterfly)
Episode 2 - Longarm and Domestic Eastern Henna Feather (Layering Your Design)

I am mostly pleased with the quilting and will quilt more of the free-motion feathers on other quilts when appropriate. 

Hope you check out these resources and add these designs to your quilting repertoire.
Maybe tomorrow I will quilt the border and have this quilt ready to bind. 

Monday, November 25, 2013

Started Quilting Lonestar

     I have been tasked with bringing the pecan pies for Thanksgiving dinner and they are ready so I spent the afternoon working on my lonestar quilt.  The star is all quilted but the most challenging part is left.  What to do in the large areas around the star?  I have practiced large plumes of feathers but I may not quilt them until after Thanksgiving.

    My church group has chosen a little girl from the angel tree.  We have a doll and bed which will be covered with one of the doll quilts.  Sunday evening I made a pair of pajamas and a dress for the doll.

We still have several doll quilts which we hope to put with teddy bears for more gifts.

This is a special time of year.  We have SO MUCH to be thankful for.
Hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Saturday, November 23, 2013


     All the quilting is DONE on my 16 Patch & Trapunto quilt; still no binding. This is most heavily I have ever quilted before and I’m still undecided about whether I like this heavy quilting.  With many long-arm quilters and particularly for show quilts that is what is done and expected.  The quilt definitely has a different feel. 

  I tried out several new FMQ designs and got a lot of practice.  That means my stitching does not have perfect control but it was great practice.

Quilting Students

    Last night was the second class for “In the Pines” placemats at JoAnn Fabrics.  This was a family affair for learning across generations.  Here they are sewing. 

Here is the first finished scrappy pines placemat ready for holiday use.

The selection of Christmas fabrics was a great choice for this pattern.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Holiday Potholder with Pocket

     I have a stack of wedges cut in Christmas fabric so I sewed some into fan shapes.  I found an interesting tutorial online at  for a Quilted Potholder with Pocket  so I decided to use some wedges to try one.  Thanks to Elizabeth Hartman the tutorial.  Here is the front of mine  . . . 

and the back.  Instead of cutting a curve, I just cut straight across the corner for a hand to slip in. I like the feel of this and look forward to using it in the kitchen. 


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Pineapple Placemats

     Yesterday morning was taken up with business and this morning was guild day so no progress has been made on the quilting of my UFO.  I am trying to get in the holiday spirit so even with my long list of UFOs, I decided to make a set of 4 placemats that will probably be a gift for someone.  I used the directions in Pineapple Passion by Nancy Smith and Lynda Milligan. I have made a set using these directions before.  It is a stitch and flip quilt-as-you-go.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Quilting 101 and Some FMQ

     This morning I taught a beginner quilting class at JoAnn Fabrics.  The 4 students with varied experience did a wonderful job on their block.  Although not perfect (and what first block is) they look great.  Check out the photos.


They sounded excited and I hope they will keep learning more about quilting.    

     Last night I finished the free-motion quilting in the border triangles of the 16 Patch Trapunto quilt.  This is a new design for me and I like it.  It was fairly easy.  Spacing was the key.

I am still thinking about what design I want to use in the outer border.  I had hopes of having this quilt finished to show next Tuesday at guild but it probably will not be finished.   Almost.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Back to Work on Quilt Projects

    Wednesday at SQG I added a border to the Green/Yellow/Purple Orphan blocks so the quilt top is finished.  Later in the afternoon I stopped by JoAnn Fabrics and bought a bright green tone on tone print on clearance to use for the backing. I plan to quilt this next.

      Today I got back to work quilting on the 16 Patch + Trapunto quilt. The next parts to be quilted are the triangles along the border.  I practiced a couple of designs on plastic.  I have quilted the bottom free-motion curved feather so I would like to try something different; however, the top plumes need more practice or refining.