Category Archives: In Progress

Laundry Basket Quilts 2012 Mystery – Michigan

Edyta had an interesting method for presenting the different blocks.  All the cutting directions were on her blog, however all the assembly directions were on You-tube.

Sunday morning I finished the 5th (out of 12) part of the Michigan mystery.

Yesterday afternoon part 6 & half of part 7 were completed.  My design wall is filling in fast.

My goal is to have the center completed over Labor Day weekend.  Edyta presented several options for the borders.  Although I am tempted by the applique border, I won’t make a decision until the center is done.

Have a good week,

Marlene

Big Stitch Handquilting & a Farm Truck

I started My Flower Garden (Red Button Quilt Co -16″x19″) a couple of week ago with the plan to big stitch quilting it.

One of the interesting things about the pattern is that the embroidery, wool applique & buttons are worked through both the top and the batting – not through the backing.

Thinking that it would be easier to stitch through, I used wool batting.  It worked very well for the embroidery & applique, however not so much for the handquilting.
The buttons really transform the wall-hanging, don’t they?

This is one of the most interesting thing about this project – my subconsious fabric choices.  I just knew that the background fabric was perfect and discovered the reason while I was doing the handwork.

Do you see how the red wool flowers with button centers are reflected on the background fabric?  Also one of the red batik fabrics has rings and polka dots to continue the same theme.

On to the handquilting – I watched several You-tube tutorials on big stitch handquilting and then did my own thing.  It feels more like I am doing a running embroidery stitch than hand-quilting, but that is okay by me.

I tried using a quilting hoop, but found it to be ackward and unweilding so the hoop went into the Goodwill bin.

This is the part where I am second-guessing the use of wool batting.  To me it looks lumpy & bumpy, but that could just be because not all of the handquilting has been completed.

Right now there are no plans to handquilt a larger quilt, only small wall-hangings.  Hopefully I will have this one done during the coming week.

The Farm Truck appliqued wall-hanging (12 1/2″ x 12 1/2″) was completed as a gift to my brother. 

There are three other trucks in the series – Dump Truck, Market Truck & Fire Truck – which will be completed in the next couple of months.

Time to get back to my big stitch handquilting.

Have a good week

Marlene

Jurassic Park Quilt Part 1

My current project isn’t technically an UFO by my definition – no cutting & no sewing – but it feels as if it is due to the length of time it has been packed away.  I have pulled this out multiple times over the years and always just shoved it right back in the bin.

There were three main reasons that this project never got out of the starting gate.

  1.  I was short on the focus fabric according to the pattern requirements.
  2.  Previously my pineapple blocks were not as accurate as I wanted.
  3.  The design on the focus fabric was smaller scale than the pattern picture.

But now I was ready to conquer this quilt top.  The pattern is Provence in the Positively Pineapple quilt book by Lynda Mulligan & Nancy Smith.  It is a solid center cut of fabric surrounded by pineapple borders.

I am using this dinosaur print for my focus fabric, even though the design scale is smaller.

After some research, I bought the large Square in a Square ruler set from Studio 180.  Deb Tucker has a good You-tube video for modifications on the ruler to assist in the precision pineapple blocks.

The ruler covers the whole block and has 6 – 10 reference points for accurate trimming.  After making two test blocks, I chain pieced the remaining 16 blocks.

It didn’t take too long before the blocks were completed.  I am so pleased with the new ruler and the finished blocks.

To be continued – the borders

Marlene

Saturday Progress

After checking JoAnn’s, Hobby Lobby and the local quilt store, I finally found the gray & white striped fabric at WalMart.  it was a crazy treasure hunt day, but I got the fabric prize.  It was time to get busy and get this top finished.

Just a few more strip sets and all the triangles will be made.  It takes longer than I anticipated to sew the diagonal rows together.  Sew two triangles together, press the seam open, sew another triangle, press again.

My Biggy the Bee top is almost halfway completed.  Maybe I can get it finished on Sunday.

Happy Quilting,

Marlene

Biggy the Bee

On Friday I made good progress on my Biggy the Bee quilt.

I have two Krista Moser patterns, although this is the first one I have made.  Her directions are clear and concise with lots of illustrations.

It is fun watching this baby quilt come together.  I was planning on completing the top on Saturday, but I discovered that I needed gray/white stripe fabric.  So it is off to the fabric stores first.  What a hardship!

Marlene

String Diamonds

I have realized that my quilting personality requires a plan when starting a new quilt project whether that is following a quilt pattern or designing my own layout.  I am not able to just make a bunch of blocks and then decide on a layout later.  As soon as I start making blocks my brain kicks in forming and rejecting a setting until it settles on a Plan A.  Now Plan A can go sideways and end up as Plan C or D or maybe even K, but I start with Plan A.

That being said, I needed an idea for the String Diamond blocks.  After thinking and looking at quilt patterns, I decided on the Kashmir pattern by Nancy Mahoney.  Here is the link if you are interested in this free pattern:  http://www.nancymahoney.com/files/Kashmir_quilt_pattern.pdf

Of course I had to make a slight adjustment to the alternate block to accomandate the LeMoyne stars, but that was not difficult.

And then there were six!  This is looking good.

Here is my design wall on Monday morning.  All the alternate blocks have been pieced and the triangle/HST for the remining LeMoyne stars are cut out.  Now to get busy on the remaining string diamonds.

I wonder how many I can get made this coming weekend?

Marlene

Mini Fly With Me

The Butterflies Fly With Me quilt top was made in 2018.

While I was piecing this project, I had the idea to make a wall-hanging to coordinate with it.    However as my brother always tells me “Anyone can have an idea, but the person who does something with that idea is the one who can claim credit”.  I can tell you right now that I am claiming credit for my idea since the wall-hanging is in process.

My plan was to have the same layout, but make the butterflies out of hexagons.  What do you think?  Aren’t they so darn cute?

The hexies are 1/2″ per side with the butterly measuring 5 3/4″ x 4″.  The final butterfly is in almost done, so this week I will locate the scraps from the original quilt.  Hopefully by next weekend I will have a finished wall-hanging top.

What is on your to-do list for this week?

Marlene

Leader and Ender Challenge 2020

Every year, Bonnie Hunter posts a new leader & ender project on her blog.   The 2019 challenge was Shoo, Fly, Shoo blocks.   I chose the 4″ finished size and pieced a few of them. 

When I didn’t have time or take the time to cut out the HST triangles, I sewed Uneven 9-Patch blocks instead.

And then a surprise – the 2020 Leader & Ender Challenge is Easy Breezy which also finishes at 4″.

This gave me an idea for a layout.  I would have dark gray/black fabric in every Easy Breezy block, making a strong diagonal.

By combining two Shoo, Fly, Shoo or Uneven 9-Patch blocks with two Easy Breezy blocks and sashing, an interesting 9″ finished block was created.

Isn’t this fun?  I will have so many layout options to choose from.  My plan right now is to make 20 or 25  – 9″ blocks before deciding on a final layout.  I suspect that the quilt will end up with 35 blocks (5 x 7 layout), but will make that decision later.

I will also need to decide on the sashing color between the larger blocks.  The sashing width will be 1 1/2″ and I will use a different fabric & color than the smaller sashing.  For fun, I pulled out two Kona cotton solids to audition for the larger sashing.

Hmm  I don’t think that either of these is quite what I want.  Maybe a light green?  Time to dig through the stash again.

Hope you have time & fun digging through your own stash.

Marlene

Mindless Sewing Project #2

My second mindless sewing project is Long Tall, a pattern by Cozy Quilt Designs. If you are ever looking for a pattern that leaves very very little scraps, I would recommend this one. I an piecing the twin-sized version and the only scraps left were four or five 2 1/2″ squares.

Here are two blocks – one a mirror image of the other. I laid them all out on the floor to make sure that there were different fabrics in each block.

There are two tricks that I would offer to anyone making this pattern. First is to press half the blocks in the opposite direction of the first half and second is to assemble the quilt center in columns. By assembling in columns you only need to match 10″ worth of seams at a time instead of 40″ or 60″ across rows.

I am waiting on the inner and outer border fabrics to arrive, but once it does I will finish the quilt top.

Also I found this applique kit at my local quilt shop.

The name of the kit is Colorado Range and it is part of the Quilters Trek. The blue fabric for the mountains is perfect and adds a lot of dimension to the applique wall-hanging.

So, I wonder what kind of quilty distractions are headed my way in August or if – for once – I will be able to make a list and stick to it. Maybe I should get busy on that list.

Take care and stay healthy,

Marlene –

Sewing Room Updates

Two non-quilting project – fabric weights and crocheted ric-rac – have enn made.

The fabric weights ( https://weallsew.com/fabric-weight-tutorial/ ) were a quick and easy sewing project once I figured out the fusible interfacing issue. All I have is sew-in interfacing and this project was a use-what-I-already-have project. My solution was to use a glue stick to adhere the sew-in interfacing to the fabric and it worked. The tags were cut from the ribbon around a Moda jelly roll. Isn’t it fun to do something different once in a while?

At the bottom of the picture is a length of crocheted ric-rac. The directions can be found here: https://foxslane.blogspot.com/2010/09/how-to-crochet-ric-rac.html I don’t have any idea what I am going to do with the ric-rac, but it was relaxing to crochet in the evenings.

My current UFO project is Space Invaders. This quilt project had been packed up in October 2019 because I was unhappy with the color choices. The solid black was too predictable & boring and the focus fabric had a small print that wasn’t playing well with the center. Frankly I just didn’t want to take the time to unstitch all those dang rectangles.

Well, now it is time to get this quilt top finished. Here is my progress so far.

I like it – the focus fabric brightens up the quilt top and is worth the time of unsewing and resewing. The border may be a bit of a challenge since there was only a yard or so of the focus fabric, but I will worry about that when I get there.

So the Simply Sixteen didn’t get lonely, I loaded a quilt onto the frame. The panto-graph is spiders and webs which is the most detailed panto-graph I have attempted to date.

To keep on track, I made a list of 12 goals for May. I have three vacation days in May and the list is divided between quick items and more time intensive items. Finishing the Space Invaders quilt top and machine quilting ShortLine are the top two goals, so I am off to a good start.

Marlene