Category Archives: 2021 Finishes

My Flower Garden & Smokey River

I finished the hand-quilting on My Flower Garden – isn’t it cute?

There is still a bit of lumpiness, however it isn’t that obvious when looking at it straight on.  I am very happy with this little wall-hanging, especially with all the new techniques learned.

I just realized that I didn’t post any progress pictures of Smokey River (Whirligig Designs).  Well, too late now since the quilt top was completed last weekend.  In fact this was the only thing I did last weekend.

The pattern was copyrighted in 2010, so I am guessing that this UFO dates back to 2010/2011.  It is not my oldest UFO, but definitely a goldie oldie.  I need to start thinking about quilting designs since – YEAH – it will fit on my new frame when it arrives.

That is all the quilty news from last weekend, so what have I been working on this weekend?  The second in the truck series – Market Truck – was completed today.

The truck wall-hangings are 12 1/2″ square which makes for a fast quick finish.  The applique pieces were button-holed stitched down yesterday morning while the afternoon was spent machine stitching the straight lines.  This morning the binding was completed and Market Truck was done.

While I was working on Market Truck, I was also deciding on my next piecing project.  I say piecing because I can’t say machine quilting since the new frame has not yet arrived.  Grrr

Anyway the next project is the 2021 Laundry Basket Quilt Mystery Michigan with this fat quarter bundle and background.  I am so excited to begin a new project.

Wishing you the happiness of beginnings and endings,

Marlene

Behind – Again

Well I am behind – again – in my posting, so there is a lot of stuff to get caught up on.  First up is the Honey Bee top is now a finished quilt.  The top was completed in August 2017.

The first thing that I did was remove the bottom row to balance the quilt before machine quilting the top.  The pantograph Daydream by Urban Elementz contained elements that highlighted the block design and was fun to machine quilt.

Daydream - Pantograph

Those blocks from the bottom row – they ended up on the back of the quilt.

And now a look at the front of the quilt –

I think that the black & white striped binding was the perfect finishing touch and I am so happy with the final result.

The next project was a birthday quilt that needed to move from top to finished quilt quickly.  I had been procrastinating because of the size – 72″ x 78″ – but there was a deadline so I needed to get busy.  After making the quilt sandwich, I stitched in the ditch around the blocks and the borders on my Bernina.  Then I hooped the top on my frame, machine quilted on the long arm and then attached the binding by machine.  From sandwich to finished top, it took me 4 1/2 days – good thing that I had take the week off work.

However it was all worth it because granddaughter loved it.  The end result of this story is that a Studio 2 frame was ordered so that I can machine quilt my larger tops without all the hassle.  My plan is to set it up as an 8′ frame which will handle an 84″ quilt.  My largest unquilted top is 84″ – isn’t that just perfect?

It is so satisfying to look through my patterns, look at the size and think to myself “I will be able to finish that quilt with no problems”.  Right now I am just waiting on a call from the store letting me know that it has arrived.

Have a quilty weekend,

Marlene

A Week of Finishes and a New Start

I don’t think that I have ever had three finishes in one week, but that is what happened this last week.

First up – Batik Mexican Star (41″ x 41″), a wall-hanging from a Sew Batik kit.  This is the first Mexican Star that I made.

Just for fun I used cat fabric for the sleeve, although being stared at me while stitching was a bit creepy.

The second and third finishes are months 4 & 5 of the Whatnots Club by Kim Diehl.

Laugh Yourself Silly (15″ x 18″)

and Kick the Can (18 1/2″ x 18 1/2″)

It was great to get these two completed since yesterday I received an email that the month 6 kit has shipped.

My Bernina was calling to me, so I pulled out UFO bin #2 that contains parts for Smokey River and spent some time just pushing fabric through the machine.

Sometime in 2011 or 2012 I cut these pieces from a jelly roll and made 4 blocks.  Everything was then stuffed in a bin and it has been sitting on the shelf ever since.  It is time to piece this quilt top.

Have a good quilty week,

Marlene

Simon the Hedgehog

This last week has been a mess – everything I touched on Monday & Tuesday went wrong and then Wednesday & Thursday was spent fixing all the messes.  Thank goodness that is history and now I can take a deep breath and move forward.

But before everything went crazy, I finished a small gift pillow featuring Simon the Hedgehog.

The hedgehog & flower is a laser cut applique kit from The Whole Country Caboodle.  The pillow was personalized with the name Simon to honor a beloved pet.

The Whatnots Club Month 5 – Laugh Yourself Silly – was received and quickly became a mini quilt top.

I have really enjoyed receiving the kits and making these mini wall-hanging.  Three have been completed out of five kits received, so I guess I had better get busy on the other two.

My leader & enders project has been growing slowly – extremely slowly.

The layout plan is for a 5 x 6 layout, so I am just over half done.  I like how the black diagonal lines through the blocks adds an additional layer of interest.

I was having tension issues with the long-arm, but finally figured out the issue.  After changing needles, rethreading the machine and fussing with both the upper and lower tension multiple times, I discover it was the bobbin.  To be technically accurate, it wasn’t the actual bobbin but how the thread was wound on the bobbin.  After putting in a prewound bobbin, the tension was perfect and Batik Mexican Star was quickly machine quilted.  Here it is coming off the machine.

Can you see Laugh Yourself Silly hanging in the background?  It will be the next one loaded on the frame.

The quilting-to-do list for this weekend include binding Batik Mexican Star, machine quilting/binding Laugh Yourself Silly and several other small applique wall-hangings.

Have a great quilty weekend,

Marlene

Woven Ribbons

Woven Ribbons quilt top was sitting in a project bin with a note that said “fix this”.  Really??  What the heck does that mean?  Note to self – add more information before packing up a project.

Woven Ribbons was pieced in 2010 from the pattern Sunset by Julie Popa of Sunflower Hills Designs.  The biggest thing I remember was how fustrating the pattern directions were.  Either they were incorrect or I wasn’t understanding correctly, however I know I did have major problems getting the block pieces to fit and the the blocks to match together to form the interlocking design.

My solution to the “fix it” problem was to cut 2″ off the outer border (from 6″ to 4″) and machine quilt it.

Time and distance reveals that this quilt is not the mess expected with a “fix this” note, however the frustrating struggle to piece this top lingers and the quilt was gifted as soon as it was completed.  One project bin empty and a new home for Woven Ribbons.  win-win

Marlene

Whatnots Club and Mexican Star V-2

Mexican Star V-2 wall-hanging is finished.  The top was pieced in 2009, so it only took me 12 years to get it quilted.

I used the circular panto-graph Solar Eclipse from Urban Elementz on this top.

Solar Eclipse - Pantograph

In between quilting rows on Mexican Star, I pieced together the next mini-quilt in the Whatnots Club.  The pattern name is Kick the Can and it is Month 4.   

Kick the Can will be machine quilted as soon as I finish quilting the original version of Mexican Stars.  However at the moment I am fighting with tension issues which sucks away my quilting mojo.  Grr – I will conquer the blasted tension and have some more completed tops soon.

Have a tension-free sew Friday,

Marlene

Stir Crazy with Two Finished Wall-hangings

The finished Stir Crazy quilt top –

Since I only had one yard of the butterfly fabric and was not going to buy more, it was a bit of a challenge to design the border.  To avoid any seams in the butterfly fabric, I put blocks in the opposite corners with fabric squares in the other two corners.  This is different than the pattern directions, but works for me.  I think Stir Crazy will be a great quilt for one of my grandchildren.

Next on the list was machine quilting the In and Out wall-hanging.  The panto-graph used was a Baptist Fans variation panto-graph named Random Clams.

Once In and Out was completed, I loaded Flower Basket on the frame.

The Flower Basket wall-hanging top was completed in 2018, however since it had wool applique I had it in my head that it needed custom quilting.  But recently I saw a You-tube video of a wool applique quilt being machine quilted with a panto-graph and realized that custom quilting only  was a dumb idea to have stuck in my head.

It took less than an hour to machine quilt it and after three years it is now ready to display.  This is also the first time that I used wool batting, but it won’t be the last.  I could really tell the difference while hand stitching the binding – the needle flowed so smoothly through the batting.

It feels great to have two finishes even if they are smaller projects.  Wonder what new project will be next?

Marlene

Biggy the Bee & Stir Crazy

Isn’t this baby quilt so darn cute?  I am very pleased with the final result, especially the quilting design of bees.

But you know how it is – as one project is finished, you are planning the next four.  My current  project is Stir Crazy by Brenda Henning in her Strip Therapy 2 booklet.

After piecing for the last two weekends, the quilt center is completed.  All that is left is the inner border and a pieced outer border.

The plan is to finish the quilt top today.

Happy quilty week,

Marlene

Rose Garden and Other Quilty News

Rose Garden was completed a week or so ago, but the picture was taken yesterday.  This was the November 2020 Quilty Box quilt and I learned so much about working with odd shaped EPP pieces. 

The quilting design is Flower Festival by Urban Elementz.  The quilted flowers show so nicely against the solid background.

And, of course, all the extra hexagons went on the back of the quilt – makes me smile.

The March mini top from Kim Diehl’s Whatnot Club was finished last weekend.  I added a border to bring the size up to 18″ which works better with the hanger in the dining room.

Working with such small pieces can be a challenge, but I am mostly pleased with my piecing accuracy.  There is always room for improvement, isn’t there?  Hopefully I can get it quilted this week.

Now it is time to reward myself by starting a new quilt.  Here is a sneak peek of the fabrics.

It has been awhile since I have made a red, white and black quilt, so I am ready to get this one started.  Okay, okay – this quilt will technically be red, white, black & gray, but either way the colors make my heart sing.

Happy Easter,

Marlene

Mount Fuji and EPP Projects

My quilting progress has been slow in February, but I have completed one project.  Mount Fuji is a pattern from the Postcards from Japan series by Helene Knott.  It is intended as an applique wall-hanging, however I decided to use a panel instead.

Mount Fuji Pattern

Postcards from Japan - Mt. Fuji  Pattern - StoryQuilts.com

Mount Fuji – my version

I can’t decide if I am happy with this wall-hanging or not.  I wonder if the light & dark gray was the right choice, maybe I should have looked for green or brown background fabrics.  I also didn’t anticipate how the machine quilting would show up on the moon.  Note to self- machine quilt the outlines in the Mount Fuji panel next time.

I have two more Fuji prints, so I may take one and try this pattern again.  Hmmm  I need to think about that some more.

The hand stitching on Rose Garden is coming along slowly.  Three of the five EPP stars have been stitched to the background – hopefully I will have them all completed this weekend. My plan is to add some pentagons to the setting triangles to add some interest.  Plan A was a partial circle, however it is too tight.  Plan B is setting them in a straight-ish line of one up one down.  I like this a lot better.

I may also add one pentagon to the center of the corner triangles – we will see when I get that far.  Rose Garden needs to be finished since I have already received the next EPP project.

The EPP Quilty Box for January arrived and it was full of lemons.

No, that is not a real lemon in the upper right side.  It is a lemon stress ball.  The project is for bowls which are not my thing, so I will be doing something completely different with them.  But that is decisions for another day.

Have a good evening,

Marlene