Thursday, February 23, 2017

Plugging away

After I spent a half hour straightening up a section of the garage, I sat down and hand quilted. I had 5 steps short of 15,000 so I was good there. I quilted 2 plus hours and this is where I am at on this project.

I have all four of the nine patch blocks quilted

I have all the 1/4" away from the edge borders done on the stenciled squares. I still have all four motifs to quilt.

And I have the 1/4" border stitching done on the star block.

I had some leftovers from the last batch of soup I made so I threw them together. I had leftover chicken broth, chicken, and some kale. I dumped that in a big pot

The traditional wedding soup I learned how to make from my late x-MIL had beef in and used endive, but I am using what I have. I was surprised how the kale tasted so much like the endive. I have done this with spinach, but the spinach flavor is much stronger and takes over too much. To finish the soup off I used one egg since I didn't have that much soup and beat in graded parmesan cheese.

I then dripped the egg and cheese mixture in the hot soup while stirring. This distributes the egg and cheese throughout the soup. Here is what it looks like then

Usually I would cook some beef with the chicken to make broth and shred both to throw back in the broth. I would also make little bitty meatballs, cook them in a fry pan and then throw those in the soup. I was surprised that the soup was still very tasty with those two items. I am going to make more of this for sure.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Hand quilting

I spent last evening - about 2 1/2 hours - hand quilting on the nine patch star quilt. My fingers are toughing up to the point that my iPhone sometimes doesn't work because it doesn't sense that it is a fingertip touching it. LOL! Sometimes I have to use my pinky since it is not calloused. Here is a picture of the back. It's getting there!

I still have not received my Essex fabric yet. The package is in a town that is 16 miles away and delivery is scheduled for tomorrow.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Adding more

I just can't make a small quilt. Even my baby quilts are big! I thought I would just make a small Chinese Coin quilt, but that is not where it is headed. I went thru and cut more fabric from my blacks, greys, and whites to add to this quilt. Here you can see I have a border laid out and ready for stitching.

And I have a pile of pieces for a border for the top side

My goal was to use up the strips of black, grey, and white fabric I had on my design wall that I had cut up last year. With those strips I had made five baby quilts with other colors thrown in, four quilt tops for veteran's quilts, and now this Chinese Coin quilt. As I said before I keep going back into my stash and cutting more fabric! This is the pile I now have left. There are all sizes of scraps in this pile from small 2" x 3" pieces up to full width 3" wide strips. I think there is one more quilt hiding in this pile!

I made peanut butter cookies for the guy at work. The house smelled so good last night!

Monday, February 20, 2017

Chinese Coin quilt progress

I spent the majority of my Saturday and Sunday working on my Chinese Coin quilt. Here is what my design wall looked like shortly after I had already started sewing pieces together.

Since the premise of this challenge was based on improv piecing, there was no way I was sewing straight edges together. What I did was the following:
first I cut the edge of the fabric at an angle

Second I overlapped the angled edges over the piece I was attaching. I then made sure the edges at the top met and used my rotary cutter to trace the edge of the cut angle onto the underlying piece of fabric. The fabric does not have to line up at the bottom as I will be sewing from the top to the bottom.

Here you can see how the two pieces nest into each other

Here is the section after it was sewn and pressed. This is how I sewed all the pieces together. I call this technique tracing.

Here is what I have so far. This section is about 44" by 71"

I also got a bit of hand quilting done on the nine patch star quilt.

Friday, February 17, 2017

Yeah it is Friday!

Last evening I made cookies for the guys - chocolate chip with additional white chocolate chips and walnuts

I had about an hour and a half to quilt on the nine patch star quilt and I got a box of goodies I ordered from Wawak - a 100 yard roll of 1" black webbing, sewing machine needles, 11" zippers, and some hand sewing needles. They had the best price on the webbing. I didn't really want 100 yards, but nobody could beat the price. All of these items are for some projects in the near future.

The weather is suppose to be nice this weekend, so I may be spending some serious time outside - 63 tomorrow and 58 Sunday. I will work on the nine patch star quilt and try to get some work done on my Chinese Coin quilt too. Always lots to do!

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, February 16, 2017

In the meantime

Since all I can do is wait for my Essex to show up, I have to continue to be productive. I finally sat down at 4:00 p.m. after clocking in this many steps
Besides my morning walk I have been packing up files at work and cleaning the trailer so all the back and forth added up!

When I sat down did some quilting on the nine patch star piece. I am not a good hand quilter, but I get the job done. I got one nine patch block done and got started on a stenciled block before I was just too tired to even hand quilt. I need to build up some callouses on my fingers for hand quilting!

This was the scene this morning on my walk. It is still snowing a bit, but tomorrow the high will be 52! Crazy weather!

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Since the fabric didn't show ...

Yesterday I found a screw in my rear right tire and I was able to get an appointment in the afternoon. Usually I have to wait a week! I had two other tires that were also losing air. There was a nail and a screw in the right rear which would mean I have had four punchers in the same tire and all in the same area. I had to replace that tire - no fixing it. The other two just needed the rims resealed.

Since the Essex navy fabric didn't show up and it was 51 degrees, I decided to wash the car. It needed it bad. So after finally finding a bucket without a hole (the third one!) that job was done. Then today is recycling and trash day so I cleaned up the garage a bit and gathered all the recycling from the garage and house, and took the bins to the street.

Since the fabric didn't show up I started working on finishing a UFO. I first had to make a stencil/template to replicated the design.

I then marked up the quilt with Crayola washable markers. It is now ready to be finished. Since the fabric hasn't' shown up yet, I will work on this until it does.

So where is my fabric? I got an email yesterday from fabric depot that they were a 1/2 yard short of the duck cloth I ordered. They wanted to know if I still wanted the fabric or not. So I sent them my answer and they said they would ship my order. I just hope I get it by this weekend so I can spend some serious time getting the that t-shirt top done. I need to have the quilt done by March 4.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Maybe today

Last evening after work was dropping off a book to the library, to the grocery store, strip the bed to wash sheets, make some hummus for dinner, and make cookies for the guys at work

I was hoping that my Essex navy fabric would have come, but it didn't. Maybe it will come today. After walking 16,433 steps yesterday, I was too tired to sew anyway.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Every little bit and more

I worked on the graduation t-shirt quilt this weekend and I am happy with the direction I am going. I loosely did a bit a math to give me a general idea of the pieces I needed to cut from the improv pieced sections. Those sections are made of interfaced t-shirt and Essex cotton/linen.

There was not enough t-shirt fabric in those 7 small t-shirts to do what I wanted. I used the backs and will use the sleeves if I need to in order to use every bit of the shirts. But even that won't be enough fabric so I spent time going thru my t-shirt collection to find shirts that I could cut up and use the backs. There was only one problem - the closet was a mess!
Straightend out - much better!

So after straightening up I found a dark gray, a red, and a black t-shirt I could cut up. I didn't find a medium gray shirt, but I remembered I had a huge gray t-shirt I use to sleep in and it was the perfect color. I cut up all the shirts and ironed on interfacing so they are ready when my order of more Essex navy comes - hopefully today. Here is what the quilt looks like so far and the backs ready for improv cutting and piecing. It doesn't look like much, but since I ran out of the Essex this was all I could do.

I also cleaned off my other design wall and started laying out my pieces for the Chinese Coin quilt. I will be recutting the pieces improv style before sewing them together.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Finally a direction!

I have been uninspired about what to do with the design of Dante's graduation t-shirt quilt. I ordered more Essex navy fabric yesterday so I would at least have that. I needed something to be the constant. Then it hit me as I was walking thru the foyer to the studio as I looked at this piece

I decided I would take the backs of the t-shirts and interface them. Next I plan on making striped sections using the t-shirt backs and the Essex. I was so tired when I got home from work last evening - the wind howled yesterday, it was cold, and the snow was a blowing! I was outside for almost two hours and that took the wind out of my sails. I was up early this morning so I got one t-shirt back interfaced and have it married with the Essex.

I was telling my sister about having so little t-shirt for this quilt. I plan on making it twin sized. She made me laugh when she suggested "borders in between them ...BIG BORDERS"

Have a great weekend! I plan on doing as much as I can on the t-shirt quilt until I run out of Essex. I have no idea what else I will work on this weekend, but I think I will be able to find something!

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Cookies and fabric

I made snickerdoodles last night for the guys at work.

I was looking for some navy blue fabric for the t-shirt quilt. All I have that would work is a piece that is a little over a yard of Essex which is not enough. I like the Essex because it is about the same weight as the t-shirts once they have been interfaced. I am not about to try and dye dark navy blue fabric for this so I guess I will be buying some.

Here is the pillow case that I will also need to incorporate into the quilt. I already opened it up.

I received a fabric order yesterday. I needed some pink Kona for a project; somehow the picture had disappeared. The color is woodrose. Fabric Depot was having a Groundhog day sale - buy $75.00 and get $25.00 off. What a deal! Then I also got free shipping and didn't have to pay tax. To round out the order I bought a yard of minion fabric

and yellow Kona to remake this quilt that I bought at an auction years ago. The Dresden plates are in pretty good shape, but the rest of the quilt has major issues. I will have to replace a few of the blades in the plates, but that won't be an issue as I have a good stash of vintage fabric. I don't know why I have to save this quilt. I think I can reuse the backing which would be great. The yellow Kona I bought is just a bit darker. They were out of a lighter yellow that I thought was a closer match, but in the bigger scheme of things - does it really matter?

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Hit the cycle

I walk almost everyday to get my steps in. Even with music it can be a bit boring. I walk the parking lots at the high/middle school where my job is located for now. I pick up coins and pencils which gives me something to do while I walk. Yesterday I hit for the cycle meaning I found a penny, nickel, dime and a quarter all in the same day. I haven't been finding many coins lately so yesterday was a big day!

Here is the can of pencils and a few pens I have collected this school year from the parking lots and sidewalks surrounding the school. This morning I found three more. I should never have to buy another pencil!

I had to go to company meetings for four plus hours yesterday. The first activity was team building. The organizers passed out boxes with stuff in them and we had to build a contraption that a marble could roll thru. The marble that took the longest time to reach the exit of our contraption would win and a second prize would be given to the team that had the most creative contraption. Here was our contraption. The marble would start at the top paper plate, go thru a hole from plate to plate, roll down the pipe insulation, then into the cardboard maze.

There was a dispute over one team's approach which had human interaction that lengthen the time it took their marble to exit. My boss thought they should be disqualified, but he was overruled so they gave my team the most creative award. Both teams got the same prize - two lottery tickets. I won two bucks on one of my tickets.

I did win this shaker and three packs of meal replacement too! I was shocked. I never win anything at company events. We had a lady come in and talk about wellness thus this type of prize. They also gave away books, some exercise rolls, and food containers.

I got a bit more knitting done during the meeting. I was so tired when I got home I just knitted so at least I was doing something. I forgot to take a picture, but the scarf is now 29.5" long.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

4th finish for 2017

Here is the maple leaf quilt done. It turned out 76 3/4" x 100. I used King Tut to do the machine quilting.

I cut the t-shirts up for Dante's graduation quilt. His Mom did not give me much to work with. I have a pillow case that will be part of this too. It had some black stuff on it so I have it sitting with some blue Dawn on it and will wash it tonight.

Yesterday we had company meetings so I knitted all day. I had about 6 or 7 rows on this scarf and it is now 20 1/2"