Friday, October 26, 2018

Wrapping up Green October

Last week I forgot to share these black and gray 6.5” selvage blocks that I’d made. Even though October for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge was dark green, I hadn’t finished these dark neutrals in September.  So, I’ve added these 22 to the pile of other selvage blocks and now have 148 blocks, way more than I’ll need for a single quilt, since I’ll be mixing them with solids. I haven’t quite pinned down a layout yet, but it’s not going to happen for awhile yet anyway. Either later this quarter or early in the new year. 

After injuring my neck and shoulders, I finally got in to see the doctor last Monday. He put me on steroids. In the past I’ve had shots for knees, my shoulder, etc., but this is the first time I’ve had a course of pills to take. You start with high doses and taper down to smaller doses over about 10 days. Those high doses were NOT fun (who takes this stuff willingly?)    I normally don’t experience a lot of side effects with meds, but wow, these caused the sleeplessness that the doctor mentioned might happen. After a couple nights of 3-4 hours sleep, I finally added in some Tylenol P.M. and got 8 blessed hours of sleep. The good news is that I had the time to lie in bed and solve world problems, plan a full week fun curriculum for a high school English class if I should ever go back to substitute teach, planned out how I would save and spend a multi-million dollar lottery win - assuming I’d ever enter one, and do a mental Christmas list for the family.

But I’m feeling so much better and trying to pace myself with my sewing and housework. I really want to start doing some interior wall painting, but my saner self is keeping me in check.

However, I did finish the California Poppies Quilt this week.  Since I have no quilt holder around today, this picture on a bed with light from a sunless outdoor window will have to do.

This was another quick and fun make, and went together without a hitch. I had won 40 of the blocks (including 8 I had made) for the August Block Lotto.  Then I made 8 more blocks for a total of 48. The setting is a basic straight set with a light yellow leaf print sashing that I had in my stash. The cornerstones are green and help link the greens in the blocks into an Irish Chain.

This was the first time I’d tried quilt basting spray on a full cotton quilt. When I started quilting again in 2012, the first 6 quilts I made were for the grandkids, and I used Minky for the backs. The quilting spray wasn’t the best with that, so I hadn’t used it since. But this time it worked great and saved me from pinning while I’m healing.

While quilting, the quilt sandwich didn’t seem as taut as I’m used to, but there was no puckering or pleats, so I’m pleased.  For as many quilts as I make, I don’t see the spray basting as a regular occurrence, but it will be great in a pinch. Or a pinched nerve, LOL.

California Poppies was quilted with two shades of Aurifil 50-weight cotton; lighter peachy orange on the front and darker orange on the back in a (mostly) straight grid pattern. The batting is my usual Soft and Plush cotton. The backing and binding are a small orange print. I had to add in a small strip of Jen Kingwell fabric along the bottom of the backing.

So, that’s California Poppies. It finished at 64x84” and will go into the donation pile for Hands2Help next year.  This quilt was #7 on my Finish Along 4th Quarter goals for 2018, which you can see here, and it’s my 20th quilt finish this year. The 4th quarter linky party is HERE.

So, now I can complete my October recap for Rainbow Scrap Challenge blocks and link up to our weekly Saturday gathering at Angela’s Scrappy Saturday.

My October dark green (and gray) RSC blocks were:
6   green selvage blocks (2 sizes)
22 gray selvage blocks, 6.5”
3  Squared Away blocks, 10.5"
8  crumb blocks, 6.5”
4  bird blocks, 10.5”      and
18  quarter log cabin blocks, 6.5”
For a total of 61 Rainbow Scrap Challenge blocks.

And I finished four quilts in October.

So, despite an injury, I was able to still pace myself and keep things moving along. I am thrilled to be clearing out so many works in process. At this rate, I may let myself do some stash shopping during the end-of-year clearance sales!

And finally, let’s see what’s on the quilting horizon for November.

First, I want to play with my wonky quarter log cabin blocks. Oh, the possibilities!!

What I know is that I’m going to do this funky layout, set with 10 blocks across and 12 down, for a 60x84” size. What you see pictured here is about a half-quilt’s worth of blocks stuck up on the design board. When I get to playing with it for real later this weekend, I’ll construct it much as I did the bowties quilt recently. That is to say, I’ll divide the colors up roughly half and half so that the color balance for the top and bottom has the same variety. You know, not all the blues on top and pinks and reds on bottom. Other than that, I’ll just see what happens and while arranging the top and bottom halves independently. Naturally I’ll make sure that the two halves will mesh together correctly.

Secondly, I’ll move ahead in November with All You Need is Love for my daughter Megan. This quilt got its planned borders last week.  Instead of doing a 4.5” border of black and white checkerboard, I did it as 2.5”, which is much better and gives the rounds the size variety they needed. The pink hearts were already sewn at 4.5” and they fit just fine - I just had to use 4 less than originally planned. Then, to make up the downsizing of the checkerboard round, I added a 2.5” border in aqua to get the base up to the size I will need to build the final round onto.

The quilt is now ready for the 8” windmill blocks on the sides, stripe-y fabric treatment on the tops and the final cornerstones. Next week I may be asking your opinion about which windmill block to use - I’m wavering between two, so I’m going to make one of each before deciding.  Right now this looks pretty wrinkly and wobbly up on the design board, but that’s just because the top is pinned and the lower half is just hanging. Believe me, it’s symmetrical because you can’t do medallion style without maintaining the measurements. Wish I could say the same for me......


  1. Your medallion quilt is so happy and cheerful. I think you made the right decision in down-sizing the checkerboard round. It provides just the right amount of sparkle.

  2. So much color - just what I needed to see this morning!
    The checkerboard round is the perfect size - it adds just the right amount of punch to the design. Can't wait to see the rest of the design!

  3. you have been very busy for an injured person. beautiful progress.

  4. You got a lot done this month! I'm hoping the steroids helped you even while causing the sleeplessness. I love the California Poppies quilt! Besides the green squares through the center of the block, what were the rest of the colors limited to?

  5. Busy month!! I love all your projects, California Poppies is gorgeous, love your green blocks, and cute wonky quarter log cabin blocks! I hope your feel better now, I confess I had to laught about what you were thinking during those nights ;)

  6. You got so much accomplished this month! California Poppies turned out gorgeous! I love the setting you chose making an Irish chain effect, and the light colored sashing really brightens and makes the blocks stand out.

  7. I love that Poppy quilt...; you have a lot going on, Cathy. Glad you are beginning to feel better. Meds like that are no fun--i can relate to the "world planning" (lol) during sleepless nights...ack!! the brain just won't stop going!! Hugs, julierose

  8. That's a lot of selvages! I feel for you-- not being able to sleep is absolutely the worst. But you've managed to be so incredibly productive. Congratulations on finishing California Poppies, too. Hope you feel better soon!

  9. You put me to shame in productivity and while you're injured and sleepless on top of it. I really like where the quarter log cabin quilt is heading. I may add that one to my RSC projects once I finish some of them. I didn't get to crumb blocks this month. Maybe I can squeeze in a few before Wed.
    Hope you continue to improve.

  10. I love your California Poppies! Carrying the green into the sashing was a great idea. Such a fun, bright quilt!

  11. Love the 'world planning'...probably because I can relate so well! Ha, ha! You have accomplished so much in a month, in spite of the health issues. I am so impressed!

  12. Now I know what a quilter on steroids is like. Zounds. The poppy quilt is quite beautiful and I really like how you smudged the background in the picture to remove the extraneous stuff. I will be borrowing that trick in the future.

  13. Love all those greens! and all your other work too.

  14. You have a great display of green projects. Wow to be doing all that while injured amazes me. Well done.

  15. Fun to see so many accomplishments all together in this post! I really like the California Poppies quilt. Hope your neck responds well to the treatment and you can get off those steroids as soon as possible!

  16. I can't believe you finished the Poppy quilt already! Congrats on the finish. And you finished all those other quilts while injured? Very impressive - both you and the quilts!

  17. Hmmm - just think what you could have accomplished if you hadn't hurted yourself!!! Must have been the steroids? I can identify with the sleeplessness, but mine's not from meds...just what's seemed to become my norm. I, too, have won and spent multi-millions in my thoughts.

  18. Wow, so many projects on the go, so many pretty pictures, I really love the California Poppies quilt.

  19. Hope those new meds do the trick. Lots of great progress though despite the modifications needed. Glad that you figured out how to spend your lottery winnings. So many fun things to think about in the wee hours.

  20. Congrats on another fabulous finish. LOVE it!! You were SEW productive this month. In spite of your injury. Kudos!!


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