Author Archives: 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

Quilty Vacation Days

This is the scene outside the patio windows last Sunday.  My estimate is that we recieved 10 – 12″ of snow.

However Monday’s view is of sunshine and blue skies.  The snow melted quickly and the roads were dry by Tuesday.

Yesterday and today were vacation days, making a four day quilting retreat.  The first goal was to move the EPP Rose Garden top to a finished quilt.

The top was completed last weekend, and I decided not to add any pentagons to the setting triangles.  It was one of those times when the vision in my head did not translate well to fabric reality.  So what did I do with all those pentagons that I had made?  Well I placed them on the back of course!

Rose Garden was loaded on the frame, machine quilted and sleeve/binding attached.  It should only take a day or two to finish the hand-stitching.

Today’s project is Biggy the Bee, a pattern by Krista Moser.

Have a good weekend,

Marlene

Quilting on a Snowy Weekend

For the last three weeks, I have been piecing the Jewel Box quilt from Brenda Henning’s book Strip Therapy 5.   

Don’t those soft pastel batiks glow against the dark plum grunge fabric?  The biggest problem I had with this quilt is that the jelly roll had pinked edges which I find a challenge for accurate piecing. 

All the blocks made, laid out & pinned in place and – as you can see, this quilt is bigger than my design wall.   

The completed quilt top.

I cut the remainder of the block strip sets into 1 1/2″ segments for the second border.  I think it looks like a ribbon running over and under the background fabric.  The best part is that there are no leftovers from the pastel jelly roll.

The other change I made to the pattern was to cut the outer border width at 4 1/2″ instead of 6 1/2″, making the finished size of my Jewl Box is 78″ x 94″ instead of 82″ x 98″.

Now that this quilt top is finished, it is time to load the EPP quilt top Rose Garden on the longarm.

As for the “snowy” part in the title – it started snowing here yesterday evening and is still snowing as I write this post.  So far there appears to be around 12″ of accumulated snow and –  as you can imagine –  I am so happy that I am working from home and don’t need to worry about driving to work tomorrow.

Have a good week,

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

January Wrap-up

I am off to a good start on my 2021 goal of curves & circles.  My first finish – Twelve Moons.

The pattern directions said to applique the circles onto a background, however I used the Creative Grids Circle Savvy Ruler instead.  As long as I remembered that the background fabric was cut 1/2″ smaller than the inset circle all was good.

The panto-graph stitched on Twelve Moons is Kismet by Urban Elementz.  I think that Kismet has just become one of my favorite panto-graphs – to me it looks like leaves swirling in water on this block.  Yes, I will definitely be using this Kismet again.

And the back of the quilt.  It feels so good to use up those odd pieces of fabric and make room for new purchases.

My second circle project in January was Garden Globes by Jason Yenter (Floragraphix II).  I bought this kit in 2007, so it had been patiently waiting long enough.

Jason Yenter is one of my favorite fabric designers.  The way he layers motifs on top of each other makes for visually interesting fabric which is highlighted in this pattern.

The Garden Globes pattern was also written to applique the circles on the background and I, of course, machine pieced them instead.  They are the same size as the two circles in Twelve Moons, so these nine were no problem – well, no problem as long as I cut accurately, pinned carefully and sewed slowly.

Now that I am caught up on all binding projects, my attention returned to the Rose Garden EPP project.  The star block in the lower left was completed and appliqued to the background.  I cut the remaining 8 neutral charm squares into 1 1/2″ strips along with some of the background neutral to use as the sashing.

My plan also includes cutting out octogons from 10 of the remaining colored charm squares to make 4 arches for the 4 side triangles.  So as you can see, I still have a bit of handwork to do before this quilt top is completed.

I have been collecting my curves & circles projects in one place and there are more of them that I originally thought.  I mean I knew I had quite a few, but it is totally different to see them in a pile.  It is going to be a busy year.

Next up is two wallhangings – Mount Fuji and Tiny the Giraffe.

What is on your schedule?

Marlene

J7 Quilt

J7 – the second finish for 2021.   What a great way to start the year!

The backing was a great place to use up some leftover bits and pieces.

The panto-graph I used for the quilting is Gravity by Urban Elementz which is a circle in a circle design.  I think that I am getting better at taking pictures of the machine quilting.

To keep the “get them quilted” streak going, I loaded Twelve Moons on the frame.  I should have the quilting finished in a couple hours since it is on the smallish size (44″ x 50″)

It is a great feeling to have moved so many quilt tops to completed quilts, however now it is time to get back to piecing.  I have two new projects – one pieced and one hand-work – that are calling my name.

Have a happy, quilty weekend,

Marlene

Twelve Moons

My first quilt top finish for 2021 – Twelve Moons.

Twelve Moons is a free pattern on the Robert Kaufman website and is a great pattern to showcase panels.  The pattern is copyrighted 2009, so it looks like this project has been patiently waiting 11 or 12 years.  I have no idea why it took so long to be pieced, but I am very happy with it.

This morning I started the search for backing fabric and look what I found:

I don’t remember why I made this backing, but it will be perfect for the Twelve Moons quilt once a 6″ strip is added to the top & one side.  My goal is to have it on the frame and machine quilted tomorrow.

Happy quilting,

Marlene

Diamond Stars Finish

Diamond Stars was machine quilted in December, however the binding wasn’t completed until January making this my first finish for 2021.

This is one of my favorite quilts from 2020 and is now hanging next to my quilting frame.  I like the unusual star and the rainbow colors.

While finishing the binding on Diamond Stars, the next quilt was coming off the frame.

Both of these quilts were machine quilted with monofilament thread.  With such high contrast, monofilament is my go-to thread color.

And now that it is January, I started a new piecing project – Twelve Moons.  Twelve Moons

Since 2021 is the year of curves, this project is perfect with two circles.  Even though the pattern says to applique the circles, I am going to piece them instead.

My fat quarter bundle included two panels – one in green/gold colors & one in green/blue colors.  I combined the blocks that I liked the best to make my quilt top.Making the fabric choices was the hardest part of this project since the sewing was easy.  The above picture shows the progress that I made on Saturday.  Today I plan to finish the top and stitch the binding on the J7 quilt.  What do you have planned for your Sunday?

Have a good quilty week,

Marlene

Goodbye 2020 – Hello 2021

One final completed quilt for 2020 and #4 for December – Blue Onion (50″ x 70″).

It was quilted with the panto-graph Parchment from Urban Elementz.  It is a challenge to get a good picture of the quilting, so here is a picture of the design.

Parchment - Pantograph

So my totals for 2020:

  • Pieced tops – 19
  • Completed quilts – 23
  • UFOs finished – 9
  • Yardage used – 95 yards

The two tops pieced prior to 2008 are not completed quilts, so that will be a roll-over goal for 2021.  I would also like to see the yardage used at 100+ for 2021.  I guess I had better get busy.

As a close to 2020, here is my annual empty thread cone picture.

Happy New Year,

Marlene