Saturday, January 14, 2017

First Finish of the Year

How has your week been? Here in the Salt Lake Valley it’s been cold and wet. The sun made a brief appearance yesterday but is back in hiding today. We’ve had rain and snow (mostly rain) all week. Great sewing weather!

In my last post (if you didn’t see it) I listed out my goals for the first quarter of this year’s Finish-Along. I have a finish to show later on in this post (a Rainbow Scrap finish!), so let’s move on to Rainbow Scrap Challenge matters. This month is purple, and this week I focused on working with strips.

First up are my four 8.5” strip blocks. I’m still on the fence about adding the lighter colors, but there you have them. These are really the dregs of my scraps, as the best pieces went into the bookcase project.

The bookcase project, you ask? Yep, a rainbow bookcase. Here are my four purple 12” blocks for 80% of the “bottom shelf”. The last block will be made of dark neutrals (black/gray) when we get to those....

I’ve got more pictures, close up, to show you while I talk about this FUN project. You can click on the pictures to see them better. And all my imperfections. What a learning experience! My favorite part is picking out the book titles from my selvages.

The names of fabric lines make good titles for books (or songs, come to think of it). I just cut them out of the tightly-woven selvage and stitched around them with a tiny stitch. Do you see the book Fairy Frost? Dover Hill? Between Friends? And of course, Prince Charming!

As you can see , the books aren’t perfectly rectangular. I just eyeballed rather than measured everything (and with my vision issues, I should know better). But look at those titles...... Jazz (with music notes!) Anything Goes. Architextures (on the wood-grain print).

The small leaning books on top were problematic; from now on I’ll stick to the stacked books (like in the Anything Goes and Quilters Candy group).  My favorite? Helen’s Garden, on the right.  The names do not match the fabrics - I was more concerned about which titles fit. And I want to explore doing a book series (like the gold banded books above). I can do better.

Why not join us over at So Scrappy for some more purple Rainbow Scrap “reading”????

And this was my first finish of the year - my Rainbow Rails.  It was a 2016 Rainbow Scrap project made of vintage sheets in the Rail Fence pattern. It is now quilted, bound and ready to use. As it was always intended to be summer weight, the batting is merely flannel. It finished at 72”x81”.  This was #1 on my list of Q1 goals, which you can see here.

I’m not sure if you can see it, but the binding is scrappy and roughly matches the colors it borders (orange-green-pink-blue).

Right now I’m in the process of quilting another Rainbow Scrap quilt (blue-green Improv) and will have that for next time.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
In remodeling news, we had a great surprise. When the carpet was ripped up from the hallway and back bedroom/study, we found the original hardwood floors. They were in beautiful condition, although there was one tiny patch to be filled, then the whole thing was buffed. It is generally not recommended to lay hardwood on hardwood unless you run it in different directions, but why would we want to? So yeah, we have three different types of hardwood in the house now. The upstairs hardwood is everywhere (except the 2 bathrooms, which are tile) - three bedrooms and the hall. We left the master bedroom and the girly guest room carpeted for now.

So the hall (and closets) and study are now restored to their original lovely sixties-era hardwood. The new baseboards still need touching up and caulking, and the stair treads will go on today. In fact, it will all be done today and tomorrow. Then we can move everything back into the bedroom and hall closets. And the last of our furniture (couch and ottoman) are being delivered today. YAY!!  If the sun ever shines again, I should be able to finally get some pictures this week!

The remodel feels like it’s been going on forever - and indeed, we started the kitchen refresh in August. But the whole thing is within inches of being done. I love FINISHES of any kind!

Cathy maroon


  1. LOVE LOVE the bookcase row! Looks so authentic. The rail quilt looks so fresh and happy, great finish.

  2. I agree with Kat ... the bookcase row is FANTASTIC! My daughter is a big reader and I'm always on the lookout for great book ideas in quilts for a future project. Congrats on your rail finish - looks great!

  3. Cathy, so many pretty fabric things here. I like the light in your string blocks, I vote for keeping them. The Rainbow bookcase is an amazing idea - I'm a Information Specialist at a University library - I think I have to copy your idea, just love it. Also loving the delicate pastel rainbow rail fence quilt. Your renos sound like they are moving along nicely, such a lovely post.

  4. Love the way your purple shelf of books turned out. The titles are a perfect finishing touch! Congratulations on the finish! Binding turned out great.

  5. Your bookshelf is amazing. The use of the selvedges is so clever.

  6. I never in a million years would have thought of using selvedges for book titles!! The bookcase quilt is going to be one of my favourites I know.

  7. Oh, I definitely LOVE your bookshelf block, with the purple books and selvages for titles! You are just brilliant, and now I want to make one of these even more. The rail fence quilt is so pretty and summery - perfect for that time of year. Nice finish!

  8. I think it's unanimous that your book shelf row is a hit. I might just have to steal that idea from you as well! It looks fantastic!
    I also really like the rail quilt that you finished. The colors are so pleasing.
    Congrats on the closing in on the finish of your redo. I have one to look forward to, but not for three years at least. I'm going big time though, enlarge my kitchen, main bath and laundry room. Looking forward/not looking forward to it! (I may rent another house while it's being done!)

  9. The PURPLE Rainbow Shelf is great, but I absolutely LOVE your Rainbow Rails quilt!!!

  10. Love the bookshelf. I have a sister who is an avid ready, I just may have to keep this in mind for the next time I need a gift.

  11. Oh, fabulous! LOVE the bookshelf! I can tell you had fun with the titles. It was a brilliant move to use selvage printing for them. The Rainbow Rails is so pretty. That will be cool and fresh on a summer night.

  12. LOVE the bookshelf! What a fun idea - I will enjoy watching what you come up with! Rainbow Rails turned out lovely - very Impressionist-looking. Yay for good news on the remodeling front!

  13. You sure have a lot of fun with your quilts!! I have never seen one of yours that I didn't love. The bookshelf row is great. I saw a pattern book for a bookcase quilt that is on my wishlist. I need to accumulate more scraps for that!!

    Yay, hardwood floors. We have them that are covered with area claws you know. I can't tell you how badly my ceramic tile in the bathroom is scratched from nails and dog tags. They love the cold floors in the summer. But we love out dogs so we...tolerate...

    Glad your house re-do is coming to a close. Will you know how to act when your life is back to "normal"?
    xx, Carol

  14. What a great surprise on the floors! I had that happen on my first house - I pulled all the carpet up as they were smokers and found some beautiful hard wood floors underneath that got finished off.
    Your bookshelf is wonderful! I wondered how you got the titles on there. Thanks for sharing.

  15. Love, love, love the books! I put some books with selvage titles like that on a shelf in a jar quilt (jars filled with candy mostly since he loves sweets) I made my son years ago and had a fun time picking out book titles too.

  16. This was a fun post! I loved seeing your first bookcase blocks with creative selvege titles. And the rail quilt is so beautiful! Congrats on such a pretty finish! Picturing your authentic, original hardwood floors was the icing on the cake :)

  17. The book case blocks are truly inspired. I love how you are using the selvages for book titles. Brilliant.

  18. What a load of awesome projects! Fabulous finish with the rainbow quilt. Thanks for participating in the 2017 FAL on behalf of the global hosts!


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