Friday, March 30, 2018

End of the Green

This is the last week for our green scraps at Rainbow Scrap Challenge. We will revisit green again later in the year - only then it will be the darker half of the green spectrum. For now, however, this is a recap of what I completed for March:

4 green Bird blocks (10.5”)
11 Quarter Log Cabin blocks (6.5”)
1 Geese Migration block (10.5”)
11 Selvage squares (6.5”)
2 Squared Away Sampler blocks (10.5”)
10 Crumb blocks (6.5”)
3 Linked Squares blocks (16.5”)

That’s a total of 42 blocks.

Additionally, I made and delivered 11 small kennel quilts to Best Friends Animal Society in Salt Lake City. They were my OMG (One Monthly Goal) for Patty at Elm Street Quilts’ program.

But let me show you what’s NEW this week in the finish department, OK?  Originally I planned to finish up my Plus blocks (a 2017 Rainbow Scrap Challenge project) into one large quilt. However, Alfalfa (Alfie) and Darla had other ideas.

Here is PAWSitivity I :

Pawsitivity One measures 48x63”. It’s quilted with vertical wavy lines. The backing is just some baby blue flannel. And it will be donated to a Hands2Help charity through Sarah’s blog  Confessions of a Fabric Addict.

Next up is Pawsitivity II :

Pawsitivity Two measures 58x64” and is quilted with basic stippling. This is such a happy quilt that I can’t bear to part with it! The backing is mostly a cute red floral, except where I had to fill in with the cute yellow floral border fabric. 

But remember that last week I had two other charity quilt finishes, plus a pink charity baby quilt I finished last October HERE, so I have 4 charity quilts to donate to Hands2Help so far. There may be more - I’m planning on it - as I am going to focus some of my time in April to finishing up a couple more. 

At the end of last month, I never gave a recap of my weight-loss efforts for February. And now that March is over, I’ll just combine it all as one. Basically, I’m right where I was at the beginning of February - literally, to the ounce. Down 35 pounds even. I’ve sort of been treading water. Hit a plateau, if you will. 

We went on vacation in February (too many margaritas) and I gained five pounds, but lost it within 10 days of being home. I’ve been walking several miles 3 times per week and biking the same 1-3 times per week as weather permits. I’ve lost inches and my clothes are looser.  Almost ready to go down another size. That’s a win in my book. And now with the weather warming up and great new spring produce appearing in the supermarket, I feel as though I’m ready for Round Two of this health regimen!

Saturday, March 24, 2018

Green and Other-Color Quilts

I have a lot of green in my stash. Green fabric in my fabric stash that is. (Too bad I’m not talking about money). But I’m saving a lot of the greens for both a cactus quilt I’ll be making later this year (more about that in a couple months) and for our second green month with the Rainbow Scrap Challenge sewing later this year.

But I had an idea to combine this month’s color green with last month’s color purple and do a quilt. My inspiration was some green and purple Tamara Kate fabric (surprise, surprise!) I’ve had in my stash a couple years.

I just cut simple 5” squares in the primary fabric (the two-tone green with purple flowers) and  used other matching scraps or fat quarters. Isn’t it cute?? It Measures (after washing, drying and shrinking) about 43x53”.

It sewed up so quickly! And it was even super quick to baste out on my tabletops. While I had them cleared off to baste this quilt, I basted up another one that I had pieced last summer (more about that in a minute).

I didn’t have quite enough to do the squares and the entire backing with the feature fabric, so I added a purple stripe down the back.

This will be a charity quilt for Sarah’s Hands2Help charity drive. Two of the charities are local (-ish) to me, and I will probably make and collect several quilts before delivering them at the end of the program.

The second quilt I basted and then finished was made from my pink and pastel vintage sheet scraps last August or so. It has languished as a top since then.  But here it is all finished up and washed.

This quilt measures 40x40” 

And while I’m on a frenzy of quilty finishes, here is a peek at two more Rainbow Scrap quilts that will be done before the end of this month.

Remember my plus sign blocks? They were a Rainbow Scrap Challenge block I worked on all of 2017. But rather than making one huge quilt, as was my original plan, I divided them up into two quilts. Here Alfie is modeling, showing, oh heck.... he’s just goofing off.

Both of these are actually ready to be basted and quilted this weekend.

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Note:  If you entered my Quilty Orphan Adoption contest or my blog giveaway last week, the winners were announced in yesterday’s post HERE.

Linking up to:
Rainbow Scrap Challenge at Angela’s So Scrappy


Friday, March 23, 2018

WINNERS, WINNERS Chicken Dinners!

I’m being lazy and using one blog post to announce the winners of (1) The Quilty Orphan Adoption prize - an unfinished purse kit blogged about HERE, and my Blog Giveaway prize winners for (2) A package of Soft and Stable stabilizing foam and (3) A Hoffman Digital Cityscapes panel, blogged about HERE.

Each qualifying entry (with contact information) was placed in a hat and the winning names drawn by my brother. Without further ado:

  **I have sent you an email**

  **I have sent you an email**

  **I have sent you an email**

Thanks so much to all who participated! I think we may need to do this drawing thing more often!  :-)

Saturday, March 17, 2018

And Even More Sewing O’ The Green!

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Spring is coming our way, slowly but surely. We’ve had warm shirtsleeve bike-riding weather this week, as well as snow, rain and wind. Not all on the same day, but even in the same week - well, you know it must be spring. Things are greening up in the yard already. But they’ve been green in my studio all month!

I’m joining in with all the other lassies who are linking up to Rainbow Scrap Saturday over at Angela’s Scrappy Saturday linkup. Why not join us? You may not find a pot o’ gold at the end of our rainbow scraps, but you’ll definitely find some green!  :-)

Here are my Linked Squares blocks. The bottom one was done last year as a test block to see if I’d like it. But I never counted it in my production totals, so it will be counted this month. And just to give you an idea of how old some of these scraps are, you might be able to pick out the carousel horses on hunter green in one of the blocks below. It’s like the nineties threw up all over it, LOL!!

And then we have some green quarter log cabins. These are way too fun and wacky. I’m thinking that a quilt of just QLCs might be a bit wild. Maybe they’ll need to be tamed by an alternate block, like selvages or something.

And the last of my blocks are just the scraps and crumbs blocks. I even threw in some narrow selvages to make these 6.5” blocks. 

Since the selvage blocks (shown last week) and the quarter log cabins and the crumb blocks are all 6.5”, it gives me a lot of design possibilities. Maybe I’ll combine all blocks of one or two colors for a quilt. Or maybe I’ll just do rainbow crumbs. Or rainbow selvages mixed with crumbs. For now, I’ll just keep on sewing the color of the month.

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I got a bike for my birthday, a few days early. Good thing we bought it early so I’d have a chance to ride it at least one afternoon before the aforementioned snow and rain moved in. Unbeknownst to me, while Bruce was cleaning my bike helmet for me and I was testing out the brakes, my brother shot this rather unflattering picture of me. (I’ve given up on ever getting a flattering picture of me at my age ever again).  I’m just concentrating, not scowling. Honest. But I rather like that my gray hair matches my saguaro cactus t-shirt and bike. That’s one out of three. I’ll take it. 

And just to let you know - I’m having a giveaway here on the blog. All the details are on the previous post. Shortcut link HERE.  I’d love for you to join in!

Friday, March 16, 2018

Giveaway Time

I haven’t done a giveaway for years, so I think it’s high time to do one. Even better, two. The original intent was to do this in conjunction with my birthday, but that passed by a couple days ago. Still, it’s the same sentiment. I appreciate you, my cyber friends and readers. I love reading your comments and feel I have met so many wonderful people all over the country. And even the world! So, although this is a modest giveaway, I hope you’ll join in the fun.

There are two items, and I will draw for each one separately. 

The first giveaway is a Hoffman Digital Panel, “Skylines". It measures approximately 28” by width of fabric (42 to 44-ish).

When I bought this panel, I actually bought two. You may recall that I made a wall hanging with one a couple years ago. Here’s a refresher picture. Sorry - it is just pinned to the design board and not hanging very evenly.  Anyway, there are a lot of design possibilities for the panel.  So, the first giveaway item is for the panel of fabric above (not the quilt; that already has a home with one of my sons).

The second item is for someone who might be a handbag maker. It’s is an unopened package of By Annie’s Soft and Stable in white. Really, it’s white - my picture leaves a lot to be desired. Anyway. I am no longer into bag making, and really don’t see me using this, so I’d rather just pass it on. Anyone interested? 

To enter the giveaways, just leave a comment on THIS POST. Tell me which one you’re interested in. If you’re interested in both, tell me and I’ll put your name in for both drawings. I’ll draw separately for each item. In your comment, please iinclude your email address if you don’t have a blog or are a No Reply commenter. I need to be able to get ahold of you! 

The giveaway will be open through next Friday, March 23 at noon MDT. That’ll give me time to get my ducks in a row before posting the winner’s name next Saturday the 24th. 

Thanks for joining in, and good luck!

Thursday, March 15, 2018

March OMG (One Monthly Goal) Finished!

I am thrilled to have this project out of the way, because not only do I meet my March OMG goal, but it clears up a lot of room in my studio.

My OMG for March was to finish 10-11 kennel quilts for donation to our local Best Friends Animal Shelter in Salt Lake City. With Darla and Alfie’s help, I managed to get them done by mid-month!

Here we have the first 5, the smallest ones. As you can see, the top side is made up of crumb blocks, tiny orphan blocks and other assorted parts from the Parts Department. The backings are usually a solid piece of matching cat-themed fabric. Or flannel.

And here are the six that are a bit larger:

Several of the backing fabrics were donated by friends (thank you!). The green with white stars is a cuddly flannel remnant. And here are all twelve, below, washed, dried and super soft and crinkly.  

This finish is not only my OMG for March, but is also goal #6 of my 2018 First Quarter Finish-Along Goals. You can see that list HERE. This finish completes all but one of my goals, and that last one - Bruce’s Guitar Quilt - will have to wait until April. But it will be a priority then. I hope. :-)

Quilty Orphan Adoption

EDITED to add: please make sure to leave a contact email in your comment!!

Several years ago, I thought it would be fun to be a pattern tester for Sara Lawson (of Sew Sweetness), whom I met at the 2012 Sewing Summit in Salt Lake City. She was, at the time, just beginning to focus primarily on bags rather than dress and bag patterns. After a call for pattern testers, and because she remembered and apparently liked me (go figure!), I was selected. And it was fun, while it lasted. But that is when cancer came to call the for the first time in Bruce’s arm (and lymph nodes, and lungs, they thought. Later they learned they were wrong about the last two) and my world was turned upside down. I never finished this bag.

So now here we are, and I have a colorful UFO in the form of a bag-to-be. Specifically, it's the Dot Dot Dash Bag. Cynthia Brunz assured me that this would be a great inclusion to her semi-annual Quilty Orphan Adoption event, and so here we go!

What you will get if you are selected as this orphan’s adoptive parent:

1.  All the fabric pieces are cut out - main fabric, lining, interfacing and stablizer (either By    Annie’s Soft & Stable or Pellon’s Foam Flex)
2.  All the hardware (zippers and slides) is included.
3.  All the main fabric and lining has had the interfacing fused to it.
4.  Several of the sewing steps have been completed and checked off.
5.  Complete written instructions and patterns, with a note of where I left off. Please note that this is a very rough (pre-publication) copy of the pattern and has a lot of personal notations and corrections on it.

Everything you need to complete the purse is included, and the yucky parts (cutting, fusing) have all been done! YAY!!  And I will even mail it to you, at my expense, if you are in the USA. If you are outside of the USA, you are still eligible, but we will have to talk about dividing up the postage cost. And in the case of this bag, I’m not requiring that it be donated to charity; make it for yourself or someone you know who loves bright colors!!

If you are interested in adopting this project, just let me know in the comments of THIS POST. I will keep the adoption open through Thursday, March 22, 2018 at 6pm Mountain Daylight Time. The winner will be selected by Random Number Generator, then contacted and announced on the blog on Friday, March 23. 

And while you’re at it, why not check out all the other orphans at Cynthia’s Spring 2018 Quilty Orphan Adoption event, or subscribe (if you don’t already) to her great blog.

Friday, March 9, 2018

Sewing O’ the Green

I did get a lot of sewing done in the early part of the week with my green scraps. And I’m sharing some of them in this post. Others I'll save for next week. Today I’m exhausted. It’s been an emotionally charged and draining week. A roller coaster. But life is like that sometimes, and sewing sure helps to even things out for me. Sewing and quilting melt away stress, sadness, anger, even boredom. Does it do that for you? And I find if I add music (current playlist is Ed Sheeran and Mary Chapin Carpenter), time just floats happily by.

And so I’m cheerfully and green-fully linking up to Angela’s Scrappy Saturday party.

First up are the Squared Away blocks for March. They’re this month’s installment of our Rainbow Scrap Sampler for this year.  I love the left one. The right one, not so much because of the fabric I chose. They are 10-inch blocks.

And then I did about eleven selvage squares measuring 6.5”, unfinished. Because I have very few dark green scraps, especially selvage scraps, I decided to mix all the greens for these blocks instead of focusing on just the medium to light ranges.

Next up was a Geese Migration block, a lovely pattern by Cynthia Brunz (of Quilting is more Fun than Housework). You can find her free pattern HERE. It’s a great stash buster.

And this weekend I’m joining in on Cynthia’s Oh Scrap! linkup. There are many of us currently working (or who have already finished) her Geese Migration pattern. These are only some of my blocks, and they’re on my design board with the fabric I’ll be using for the background and sashing.

The gray fabric is a lovely cotton called Linen Look by MakowerUK. It has a wonderful, rich color and drape. And I believe it shows off the colors to good advantage. Now there are probably some of you eagle-eyed stitchers who have noticed that my blocks are not all stitched with the same orientation. The yellow and pink blocks (and even the yellow and pink ones that aren’t shown) all have the geese on the left, while the rest have the geese correctly on the right. So, all I can say is ..... do all geese fly in the same identical formation every time? And if they do, then Oh.Well. I’m not changing them. :-)

I haven’t decided if these will be set on point, as shown in Cynthia’s pattern, or if they will be set like shown above. To date, I’ve never done an on-point setting (there! I admitted it!), but this quilt’s finish and Bonnie Hunter’s Ringo Lake pattern (I’m still sewing those blocks together) both call for on point. We shall see.....

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The rest of this post is pretty much for the birds...... my Lattice Birds quilt. I need to come up with a better name. Suggestions welcomed at any time!

This was the bird I made last week:

 And then I added three more:

And THEN I combined them with the blue members of their flock, as well as the inspiration fabric by Tamara Kate that will become a border, backing (and parts of blue birds).

Oh my, I am really loving this. When we get to blue again, there will be at least two more blue birds, maybe more. Blue and green will be the primary colors of the quilt, but we will also see some other colors. I added some pulled fabrics for those future birds in the picture below.

Oh, yes please! The birds will be flying all over the quilt on a Kona White background. Between the birds I’ll have a dark royal blue lattice made of single Irish Chain blocks. I plan to do those when we get to the dark blue month. I hope it turns out as nice as my drawn plans!

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

Tonight we’re going to cap off the week by seeing the WellRED Comedy Act (The Liberal Rednecks) in Salt Lake City. Have you heard of them? Funny as heck, intellectual, but rather rough language. Bruce and I have tickets with Cousin Kim, Cousin Carrie (Kim’s sister) and Carrie’s adult daughter Jenny. It’s a dinner show.  And I’m looking forward to laughing a lot.

Saturday, March 3, 2018

New Month, New OMG - A Monthly Goal for March

The new months means it’s time to set and declare my new March goal for One Monthly Goal (OMG) over at Elm Street Quilts. This is such a great way to motivate us quilters to finish things up and not them nag us linger forever. Not that any of us do that.

This month I chose a goal that will help me not only accomplish something nice for donation, but also clear a bit of space in my sewing room.

What is that mess, you ask? It’s a pile of soon-to-be sewn kennel quilts. Last year I donated  85 kennel quilts and doggie beds (stuffed with tiny scraps and batting bits) to our local Best Friends (no-kill) Pet Shelter. It’s a particular favorite place for Alfie and Darla, because that is where we found them over 4 years ago. Although I’m doing other charity projects this year, I still want to finish up these remainders that are waiting to be finished.

In February, I went through my cat and dog themed fabrics, blocks in the Parts Department and/or leftovers from other projects. I sewed up scraps into tops and matched them to backings. Next, I frankenpieced batting scraps to match up. Some of the fabric was donated by generous people or stores, and I have worked hard over the months to pare that down. They all need to be trimmed to sizes, but all the parts are there, ready to be sewn.

My goal for March is to finish up 10 of these quilts. I have eleven of them to do, but just in case something goes wrong, I’m just going to say 10. Keep in mind that these are small quilts, roughly placemat size. They range from about 12x18” on the small side, up to about 20x24” on the large side. They are not bound in the traditional sense, because bindings can come loose (think of a chewing pet....). Instead they are sewn with top and backing right sides together, with batting in-between, then stitched closed and quilted. Once I get an assembly line going, I can do these easily in a few hours.

And since this also uses up lots of old scraps and parts, I’m linking up to Oh Scrap! with Cynthia Brunz.

Friday, March 2, 2018

Rainbow Strings Quilt Finished

March breezed in (literally) before I could finish my Rainbow Strings quilt. I had hoped for a February finish, but oh well.  This was started as a Rainbow Scrap Challenge quilt back in the summer of 2016. It finished at 64 x 80”.  The quilting is just meandering vertical lines.

Because it was so blustery outside today, the quilt is just pinned to my design board.

I left the muslin foundations on the back of the blocks, and that necessitated a lot of pressing to open up the seams so they’d lie flat.

And this is the crazy backing. I love it!

This was Goal #4 for my Finish-Along Quarter One goals.  Now I only have one more 2017 Rainbow Scrap Quilt to finish, and that is my Plus Quilt. The blocks were all sewn last year, but they need to be sewn into a flimsy and then layered, quilted, etc.  I’ll probably get to that in April or May. But if you are craving more Rainbow Scrap Goodness, why not join us over at Angela’s So Scrappy blog for our regular Scrappy Saturday linkup?

This month at the Rainbow Scrap Challenge, our color is green - from mid-tones to light greens and yellow-greens (“grellow”).  Since we are only a couple days into this month, I only have one block to show so far.

This is the first of two green birds that I’ll make this month. When the darker greens come up again later in the year, I will have two more to make.

And that’s about it from here. Oh! Darla wanted me to tell you that the Rainbow Strings quilt is very soft and passes her sleep-test inspection.

Thursday, March 1, 2018

It’s March! Let’s do Green!

A couple people asked me to give them a heads up on when I posted a tutorial for the Oh Susannah block on the Block Lotto site. March is my month to be a volunteer hostess for the Block Lotto, and I chose the Oh Susannah Block (we’ve shortened the name to just Susannah), and selected the green color scheme months ago.

And as fortune would have it, Angela from So Scrappy has also selected green as the March scrappy color of the month. And as March is also my birthday month and green is my favorite color, I think it was meant to be.

So, although the traditional Susannah block is nothing new, you are welcome to hop over to Block Lotto HERE and download a copy of the tutorial.

These are the three blocks I made for donation (no chance of winning) to the Block Lotto.

My husband’s best friend Mike passed away last night and we are heartbroken. Mike and Bruce have known each other since grade school and played in their musical folk group, The Muddy Gutter Boys, together for over 50 years. Terri, we love you and your beautiful family so much. Although we are all devastated, I’m sure Heaven is rejoicing now that Mike has returned Home.   xo