Thursday, October 30, 2014

Still arranging blocks, interesting fabric, and Southland

I sewed together my remaining blocks and rearranged them again. I changed out one of the orange blocks from a bright orange to a softer grayer orange - the second block from the left in the third row from the bottom. My next struggle is the that black block with the yellow circles. I moved it into several positions and it is just not working for me. So far I have not repeated a fabric, but since I really don't want to buy anymore fabric I may use one of the other black background prints and replace that block.

I won some fabric. 2 1/2 yards of this crazy unicorn fabric is now part of my stash. I know a little girl that loves unicorns so I plan on contacting her mom to find out if I could make her something out of this fabric.

I am a big fan of the cop show "Southland". The show only ran 5 seasons and there were only 6 shows in a season which is not many compared to a lot of series. I know I missed some of the shows just because I could never figure out when the new season was starting. It was not aired on the network television, but one of the cable channels. I found the entire series on DVD at the library and now I am obsessed with watching it. It is a bit gruesome at times, gritty, and I have the uncensored version so there is a fair amount of bad language. I will be squeezing in a bit of watching more episodes this weekend between sewing.

I plan on taking vacation tomorrow and my goal is to have the Moda Halloween quilt sewn together and pin basted by Monday.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Arrange, then rearrange

I am still playing with the Halloween blocks. I decided to add another row to the length. Here is where I am right now.

I still have a few blocks to sew together. Any left over blocks will find there way into the back.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Embrace the orange

Here is where I am with the Moda Halloween quilt from last night and this past weekend. I decided I needed to embrace the orange and ended up buying a few more pieces so I had more to play with. I think before I just had a smattering of orange and didn't have enough orange to achieve the look I was going for. I want the orange, since it is the strongest color, to dance across the quilt. Here are the new Moda ones I bought from Hancock's. They had free shipping and I have to say they shipped the fabric very fast this time! Usually I have to wait at least a week or more to get my orders from them.

So here is what the quilt looks like now. As you can see I need a bigger design wall! I don't want to cut down my blocks until I have the placement worked out so my only choice is using the floor.

I have to get this quilt top sewn together and pin basted this weekend. November 30 will be here before I know it!

Monday, October 27, 2014

3 days of sewing

I was bound and determined to get a lot done Friday, Saturday and Sunday. I spent around 10 hours a day working in the studio. I cut up the flannels I bought last week into the sizes I needed - 12" x 12" pieces for the DP quilt and 3" strips for the xmas quilt. I am sure glad I had several yards of navy flannel in my stash as I should have bought a couple more solids, but in the end it worked out.

First, I sewed and cut the 3" strips for the blocks for the xmas quilt. Here is the majority of the sections ready to be sewn into blocks.

How many blocks with this make? I have no idea! I did get a package on Saturday from Hancock's with a four more flannels.

I wash the fabric and cut it into the sizes I needed for both quilts, but I didn't get the strips sewn together as I was in a groove of sewing the DP blocks.

I managed to get all 80 blocks sewn and trimmed for the DP quilt! I did run out of navy flannel so I dug out a piece of red flannel to use for the last eight blocks I needed to sew. I have a bunch of the red flannel and it is at least 60" wide. Here is the quilt on the design wall. I have the two four block sections on the right upper row sewn together and the far right four block section in the second row sewn too. I think it will be easier to sew this quilt together in four block sections. I trimmed the blocks to 11" squares.

Here are the rest of the blocks lined up on my table.

My sewing room needs a vacuuming with all the strings and fuzz from working with the flannel. I think I will do that at lunch today. I also worked on the Moda Halloween quilt a bit and I will post about that tomorrow.

Thursday at work we had a visitor. The project engineer had this kitten run up to him when he was out walking the site. I called Animal Control and Bob came out and got her. He picked her up and stuck he inside one of the layers of shirts he had on to keep her warm and to feel secure. My hands break out from cats so I wasn't taking her home. The fellow went around to everyone to try and find her a home, but nobody wanted her. Bob knew who he was going to take the cat too so it sounds like she was going to a good place.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

DP progress and MQG meeting

Once I got home from the MQG meeting last evening there was a box at the front door. It was the flannels I had ordered for the DP quilt. Now I have something to work with! I want a scrappy look so I picked a wide variety of plaids.

I unfolded them and notice that the solids varied in length - anywhere from 18 1/2" to 22". I had ordered a half yard of each of these.

The flannels were washed and dried this morning before I went to work so they are all ready for pressing and cutting tonight after I get home from work.

I did make a couple more blocks and I am playing with the layout. Plaid circles with solids on the outside and plaid circles with solids on the outside or each circle with two plaids and two solids that are positioned opposite each other. Once I get more blocks made I will figure out how I will arrange the blocks.

There were four of us at the MQG meeting last evening. Here is what was brought for show and tell:

a baby quilt top by June

A wall hanging from Joanna

Stephanie's quilt with the cute backing with orange and yellow hearts

Stephanie also brought this very cool tear away stabilizer printed with Ann Arbor on it. She bought it from

I showed the group my Michael Miller challenge quilt.

I will be taking vacation tomorrow - I like working 4 day weeks! - and I will be sewing up a storm! Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Looking for a pencil box and progress on the Moda Halloween quilt

I had a pencil box that has passwords taped on it for a couple of websites I use at work. Yesterday my computer would not automatically fill the fields for some reason and I couldn't remember the usernames or passwords. Let's just say I looked and I looked for the pencil box. I finally found it! This week it seems is all about me misplacing things and eventually finding them. With digging around looking for my watch and the box, I have come to realize this week I have too much stuff and I need to do some serious purging. There are piles everywhere and I feel the space closing in on me!

I spent time in the kitchen last evening cleaning and cooking some chicken and some packages of fresh mushrooms. While those were cooking, I did dishes. That took up a couple of hours so there wasn't much time to sew. This morning I was up early so I cut the last three fabrics for the Moda Halloween quilt and got two blocks sewn together. Yes, the ones from yesterday's post are still sitting there. It is hard to sew the black blocks without some natural daylight, so I sewed one of the orange blocks instead.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Where's my watch and the Moda Halloween quilt

I misplaced my watch. I remember seeing it yesterday morning at 6:25 and then it vanished! I wasted a lot of time yesterday morning before I went to work, at lunch, and last evening. After changed the sheets on the bed, emptying wastebaskets, and fixing my shoe with gorilla glue, I went to the kitchen to remove yams that I had baked from the skins. As I was working on the yams it dawned on me to look one more place for my watch. After I was done drying my hair yesterday morning, I had put the hair dryer on the table where my watch was located. I looked where I put the hair dryer away and there was my watch. YEAH! It had gotten tangled up with the dryer cord. After all that I still had time to sew a few blocks together.

I still have three blocks to cut

and three blocks to sew together

Here is what the quilt looks like now. I added another vertical row of blocks. The dark blocks need a lot of work in their arrangement. What I have going on right now is not working for me at all. I need to find out the size limits for QuiltCon.

Monday, October 20, 2014

18th finish for 2014, DP quilt, and Moda Halloween

I finally finished the Michael Miller challenge quilt. It is 46 1/2" x 66". I forgot to take a picture of it when the design wall was empty. I didn't feel like taking down the blocks I had on the wall for the Moda Halloween quilt so here is the picture you are getting.

I worked on the DP quilt this weekend too. I went thru all my flannels and starting cutting it into sizes I needed. While doing that I found these blocks.

I need to make the family xmas quilt so I decided these blocks were a good jumping point to make a flannel quilt this year. I went thru every flannel I had to cut 3" strips for the xmas quilt, pieces for the DP quilt, and what was left if I could get a 4 1/2" or 3 1/2" square I cut those too. Here is my smaller design wall. I made a few more DP blocks and below them I hung the strips for the xmas quilt. I didn't want to make any more DP blocks until I get my order from I want to mix up the flannels I have with the ones from so I will have to wait until they arrive.

Here is the stack of 4 1/2" and 3 1/2" squares, the pieces for more DP blocks, and the stack of some of flannels I have left. This might turn into one of those marathon events to try and use up my flannels like I did the homespuns. I do admit I have the left over bits and pieces of the homespuns I still need to make into a top.

I then went to work on the Moda Halloween quilt for QuiltCon. I did ask and there are no rules about showing your work. I wish I had a bigger design wall so I could play with these blocks easier. Here are a few shots in progress. I am not sure if I am going to keep the orange in the quilt or not. I have made more blocks than I need so I can play around with the arrangement and colors. I plan on using this quilt on my bed so I need to make it queen sized.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

DP flannel tutorial and MM binding

I was asked yesterday about making drunkard path block using flannel which can be stretchy so I took a few pictures of sewing together a block.

I put the pie shaped piece on the bottom. I do not pin and since I am improv cutting these and there are no marks needed for matching either. First line the two pieces up, put them under the foot, and sew two or three stitches to anchor the pieces together. If you have needle down, use it! It helps to keep the pieces in place when you lift the foot to make adjustments.

I gather up the top piece in my hand and line up an inch or so of the raw edge with the pie shaped pie being careful not to stretch the raw edge. I then sew 3/4 of an inch to an inch.

I just keep working my way thru the block adjusting the amount of the top piece I have in my hand, lifting the foot and adjusting as needed.

Here is the finished block before it has been pressed.

Let me know if you have any questions. After I get a bunch of blocks made I will start playing with the arrangement and then trim the blocks to size or I may improv piece the whole top.

I got the binding sewn on the Michael Miller challenge quilt. I have one side of the binding hand sewn.

I am taking a vacation day tomorrow. Yes, another Friday off. I need the time to work on my quilt for QuiltCon. I only have about six weeks to get it done so I think I will continue to take Fridays off.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

MM quilt, DP sew along, and look at the size of this place

I pushed hard last evening to get the last of the quilting done on the Michael Miller challenge quilt. Here is a shot of the last two blocks.

I have the binding fabric pressed and ready to cut into strips. Look how crooked it is. I have plenty for the binding so that is not a problem, but it is a waste of fabric to have to cut off those crooked ends. I will probably loose at least four inches. Cotton Couture fabric is much thinner than Kona. I found I needed to use my Best Press to give some body to the fabric.

I needed to get started on Vickie's Drunkard Path sew along on Field Trips in Fiber. I wanted to make a new flannel quilt for my bed so I thought I would make mine in flannel. After digging out the flannel, I found that I had fewer plaids than I thought. On the left is the group of solids and the right stack is all the plaids I have!

Yes, I bought a few pieces when I went to Miller's Dry Goods this past weekend, but I like to use lots of different plaids so it looks like I need to some shopping. Here is my first two blocks. I will be improv cutting and piecing my DP blocks. Yes that is right - no templates, no pattern and they will not all be the same size. I have no idea what this quilt will look like when it is finished. These blocks measure around 13" x 14", but will be trimmed down. Right now I am just playing and will eventually get into a rhythm and figure out what I am looking to accomplish.

Yesterday I took several walks to the dumpster in my clean up of files in the office. Here is the picture of the building which will be a high school and middle school. See the lines of CMU or concrete blocks in the foreground? That is the foundation for more of the building. 350,000 Square Feet once done.

I don't remember if I had ever posted a picture of the double wide I work in so here it is.