Saturday, October 30, 2021

Strips and Strings and Other Good Things

Last Saturday I had the opportunity to teach a scrappy workshop for our local chapter (Salt Lake City) of Quilts for Kids. The October meeting is always a scrappy workshop, and is the last one of the year until we meet again in January. 

We were at the Quilters Lodge, but because they had a retreat going on, we were in the basement quilting room instead of the main retreat room of the lodge. There were about 15 people there, the limit allowed for public gatherings based on room size, etc etc in these Covid times.

I showed several scrappy quilts and answered questions, and then showed them the Zipper block and quilts made by Cousin Kim (also in attendance) and me. I had prepped (over several months) eleven kits (cutting All.The.Pieces) to make Zipper Quilts, and they were all taken (checked out by members). 

Often at workshops, people will bring in their unwanted scraps and yardage. This time, not only did we have a member clean out her stash (Mary is moving across country), but two of the Board members brought me strips and strings. For all the yardage donated, our Board member Cindy goes through it first to see and take any pieces large enough for making our standard quilt kits. She and other Board members make varying numbers of kits every month and have their assigned local quilt shop to keep stocked. Then the leftover scraps are distributed to anyone else. I’m the only one who usually wants them. A couple ladies brought some scraps in just for me (in addition to the Board leftovers and the strips and strings mentioned earlier). 

I only took half of what one Board member offered (a whole tub), and it was still an Embarrassment of Riches. When I got home I dumped it out on my sewing tables.

Mary had even rolled up strings into rolls (like jelly rolls) - there were more than a dozen of those. Some were single-color rolls (3 rolls were light neutrals), and some were mixed. And then there were bundles of strips just tied together. 

There were lots of quarter-yard cuts of fabric, too, and two whole quilt kits. Those kits will get returned to the Board as they can give them to ladies who need a plan to follow.

So, I did a little bit of sorting on Saturday afternoon and realized I was going to have to come up with a plan. Do I sort by color? By strip length or strip width? Cousin Kim was over on Sunday, and we both spent about three hours working on sorting before we decided we needed a break and started a new puzzle!  The sorting continued on Monday and Tuesday afternoons and most of the day Wednesday. By late afternoon it was done. Sort of. This is what I came up with. 

I set up a clothes rack in my sewing annex and put (only) 2.5” width-of-fabric (WOF) strips by color on hangers. I can use them in my various “everything but the kitchen sink” quilts or use them by color. Most of these are solids or tonals. If they were wild kid prints, they went into a specific project bag.

I made project bags by theme or color grouping. This is a boxful. I think I counted 28 kits (potential quilts), about 10 of which were left over from the past year. Some examples of quilt project bag themes are: sports, girly pink/purple, and pastel baby. 

In one cubby of one of my bookcases, I have these leftover kits from last year as well as yardages dedicated to QFK (themes include cats, bees, bears, etc).  The project bags are not all-inclusive. They’ll need (perhaps) things like background yardages or WOF strips or other scraps - all of which are in my stash!

So you can see that I have no lack of projects to pick from over the next year! Oh, and then the remaining strips were sorted into four plastic shoeboxes by length.

The pile of strips immediately in front of the boxes are WOF multi-colored thin (2” or less) strips. The other pile in the very front are strips sets sewn and left over from this week’s efforts. Which brings me to the only real sewing I did this week.

This pattern is from The Long Thread and the block is called Crossed. Cathy at Sane and Crazy just did these too. Anyway, here are twenty 10” (finished sized) blocks for a quilt that will be 40x50”. The top three rows are just pinned up; only the bottom two rows are sewn. If I do this one again (and of course with all those strings I will!), I will make 30 blocks and set them 5x6 for a 50x60” quilt. The one above didn’t make a dent in anything!

Oh! I also sewed together the cat blocks. The cat blocks were one of my projects for this year’s Rainbow Scrap Challenge (RSC). They were already sewn into “litters”, so I just had to join them with sashing. And I can say it’s not my finest work. *cough, cough*. They aren’t as wonky as they look. In fact, the whole thing IS square - 58” (within a quarter inch). But I had to ease in the last row and it’s not as flat as it should be. But it will be OK once it’s quilted and washed, so I’m not worried.  And this wonky-looking photo once again reminds me that I need to get the last piece of foam board up for the design wall. That way I can either pin up a flimsy or hang a flimsy (instead of half and half).

Alfie’s reaction to this quilt was “meh”!  Here he is in his heated bed, doing his best Rockettes imitation.

So, there was no quilting or finishing of quilts this week. But I do plan to baste and quilt up the cats quilt and Framed Pinwheels and hopefully the string quilt too.  However, before I move forward with more string quilts, I need to finish up a dinosaur quilt for the brother of the boy who’s getting the cat quilt. I need to get those delivered soon.

Finally, I went to my WW (formerly Weight Watchers) meeting last Tuesday and a friend there, Ruby, owns a quilting business. She does mainly commercial sewing and quilting of duvets and cushions as piecework for Denton House. Anyway, she brought this fabric to show us (before the meeting started). There were about four of us chatting away, ooohing and aaaahing. She told us she’d just finished 20 cushions made with this Italian fabric that was $400 per yard. We all admired the colors and stitching (it’s machine made, of course). She asked me what I would make from the leftovers and I started riffing..... it would make a great journal cover, or a small cross-body bag, or even a zip pouch....  And then she handed it to me and said “I actually brought it for you!”. I was blown away. There is one piece that is WOF by 10” and another that is only 6-7” wide by 20”.   I’m going to ponder what I actually want to do with it, and then make it for myself for Christmas! 

And that’s about it for this post. I plan to sandwich/baste up three quilts this weekend and get started on that dinosaur quilt. I’ll have at least one finished RSC project next week, but I can always hope to make progress on some of the others. The last couple months of the year are usually dedicated to finishing up our rainbow projects, but I will also be focusing on my dark neutral scraps over the next couple months in addition to RSC finishes and string/QFK quilts. I think I need a stunt sewer and quilter!

Monday, October 25, 2021

Masala Box Pattern Winner

Congratulations to Kathleen of British Columbia! She’s the lucky winner of the Masala Box Pattern giveaway! You’re going to have fun with this pattern, I promise! I’d like to thank Preeti for creating and offering such an awesome pattern to my readers. 

Masala Box by Preeti Harris

Don’t forget to drop by Preeti’s Etsy Shop to pick up your copy of this delightful pattern. With her great directions and the ease of strip piecing, you can make one of your own before you know it!

Thanks to all who participated in the giveaway! Your support of fellow quilters is *sew* greatly appreciated!

Saturday, October 23, 2021

Elephants, a Giveaway and Positivity

Happy Saturday! Even though we’re retired, there’s still always something fun and exciting about reaching the weekend!

On Wednesday, I shared the two quilts I made from the awesome Masala Box pattern just released by my friend Preeti of Sew Preeti Quilts. There is a giveaway of a copy of the pattern generously donated by Preeti. You can read more about it and enter by leaving a comment on that post. The giveaway is open until Sunday October 24 at midnight MDT. If you just can’t wait to get started, you can visit her Etsy shop and get a pdf copy right away! It’s a beautiful quilt that can be made in several sizes, and the instructions are clear and well written. 

* * * * * * * * * *

Speaking of Preeti, I finally finished my Positivity quilt. Preeti and Bernie hosted a quilt along, with the resulting quilts going to Mercy Hospital in Sacramento California . I started it last spring along with half the quilters in Blogland (that may be a slight exaggeration), and kept apace until I had the entire top pieced. But in July we had water issues in the basement from a storm, as well as basement flooding in August. So, while dealing with the construction of gutting my studio, repairing and restoring the walls, etc., I only had one table and a small area in which to sew. Thankfully, we’ve been “put back together” for a few weeks and I’m working hard to get caught up. 

Positivity measures 60x80”. The pattern and several setting variations were furnished by Preeti. I chose a simple arrangement using light and darker blue backgrounds. 

The quilting was done with a walking foot using the basic serpentine stitch on the diagonals and in the vertical and horizontal seams. The fabric in the above block (forming the cross) was one I purchased on Spoonflower. It and the striped fabric that I used for the binding are what inspired the colors and fabrics chosen.

The backing was a wide-backed blue piece from Connecting Threads. I’m so relieved to finally have this one done and off my plate! It will be mailed to Bernie next week!

This week I also had a chance to play with some lime green scraps to make a couple new blocks for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge. And as usual, I’m linking up to Scrappy Saturday to join in all the fun things that are going on there (come check it out!)

Are these elephants cute or what?!? The pattern is Stomping Ground by Wendy Sheppard . I’ll be making lots of these for RSC ‘22 and whenever the mood (or fabric) strikes me. I want to make at least one rainbow version for myself, a smaller one for Quilts for Kids, and one for my DDIL Kim. Yep, we’re going to have an Elephant-athon here at Chez Kizerian! The blocks are 10” (finished size) each, so I could also see setting these with an alternating Irish Chain block. So many possibilities! 

This morning, Cousin Kim and I are off to attend a Quilts for Kids workshop at Quilters Lodge in Draper. This is our annual QFK Scrappy Workshop, and I’ll be giving a small trunk show of scrap quilt ideas and teaching the Zipper Quilt to attendees. It’s a simple and bright block by Lynn Dykstra of Klein Meisje  Quilts. I’ve got lots of pre-cut kits ready for the ladies to check out and begin sewing. Good times!!

Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Masala Box - A Fun New Quilt Pattern and Giveaway

When my friend Preeti of Sew Preeti Quilts called and asked me if I’d like to participate in a blog hop featuring her new pattern Masala Box, I was thrilled to say yes. I had seen Preeti’s lovely quilt and couldn’t wait to jump in. How exciting it is that she’s now offering the Masala Box pattern in her Etsy shop, SewPreetiQuilts.  Masala Box is Preeti’s second pattern, but her shop offers both patterns and some lovely quilts she’s made. 

Preeti’s Masala Box quilt

Anyway, as soon as we hung up our phones, I began digging in my fabrics and culling ideas for my very own version. Oh, this was going to be fun! Did I want a light background? I had lots of Kona White and  lots of peach and light blue. But they didn’t “light my fire”. It’s autumn here, after all, and definitely sweater and cocoa weather. Well, maybe some black? No, Preeti did one of those…. Hmmm… purple would be awesome, and I have a lot of that. But my brain kept saying “autumn” to me.

In my newly-remodeled and organized studio, I’ve put all the solid yardage on bolts and large cuts of fabric for backings together. And there was a six-yard piece of a beautiful, rich brown fabric with a subtle print. It was given to me by my friend Diane from Weight Watchers to use for Quilts for Kids. Perfect! I have so many African scraps, chunks and strips that I’ve wanted to use in a quilt or two and they would be perfect against the brown. I also had a large African Dutch Wax fabric that Sally had sent me a couple years ago for Harambe Humanitarian quilts. I could use that for backing. But since I couldn’t split the quilt for two purposes, and I had plenty of fabric, I decided to make TWO quilts - one for Quilts for Kids and one for Harambe Humanitarian! 

I broke open a solid fat quarter bundle of autumn solids that was several years old and pulled out some vibrant oranges, golds, and red. To that I added a bit of bright blue and the bright green I had bought in Kenya back in 2018. Oh my, these colors were already singing together! So I got started with the strip piecing and sewing. And once I got going, it was hard to stop! 

Masala Box is a well-written pattern that gives very clear instructions for strip-piecing. These blocks were a breeze to sew and the blocks just multiplied before my eyes!

The first quilt I finished was a nine-block “kid” version. I’m calling my version “Mancala”. The brightly colored squares and their rectangular formation reminded me of the African board game of Mancala, often played with bright stones or pebbles. 

Since I knew it would be going to our chapter of Quilts for Kids (and we prefer rectangle quilts), I added  some strips to the top and bottom to lengthen it a bit. The finished quilt measures 40x48”. The back was a simple cream fabric with touches of red and brown.

The next quilt was more of the same lovely autumn colors, and I was in piecing heaven. Before I knew it, I had twenty more blocks to make a lap quilt. The binding hasn’t yet been applied to this second one, but it will be the same brown fabric.

Here’s the African fabric that Sally gave me for Harambe Humanitarian. The browns and red are a perfect backing for this larger quilt. 

Isn’t it interesting? 

The only thing I was disappointed about was that we have had rain here for two straight days and I had to photograph the quilts indoors. We had dinner plans with family last night, so the two quilts were photographed in the early afternoon to get ready for this blog post.

But about fifteen minutes before we needed to leave home, the sun broke through the clouds. It was a bright autumn evening, and the neighbors’ backyard tree was ablaze from the evening light. I grabbed the quilts and my phone and made a mad dash out to the fence separating our properties. The light was so intense!

Yessss! This was the autumn mood I was going for! The shadows were already creeping up, but I snapped away. (No filters or adjustments)

Vibrant colors! 

And that’s the story of my Masala Box quilts, and I couldn’t be more pleased. Preeti’s pattern offers several sizes from crib to huge, LOL, and honestly, it’s easy to make any size in between just by adjusting the number of blocks. I know this will be a go-to pattern for me as I get lots of fabric strip donations for the charity quilts. I can’t recommend this pattern enough for design, clarity and ease of piecing.

But wait, you can win one! Preeti has generously agreed to gift a PDF pattern of Masala Box to one lucky commenter on today’s post. Here’s the deal. Just leave a comment on this post telling us which colors YOU would make Masala Box in. For quilters without a blog (or no-reply bloggers), be sure to leave an email address in your comment so we can contact you (you can’t win if we can’t contact you!) International commenters are welcome. You have until midnight (MDT) on Sunday, October 24, 2021 to leave a comment. Winner will be selected by Random Number Generator from the comments received and contacted by email. Winner will be announced here on Monday the 25th.

Good luck! And thanks for dropping by!

Saturday, October 16, 2021

Three Little Quilts

It was a cold and rainy week this week in the Salt Lake Valley. On Thursday night/Friday morning we had our first hard frost. That means we’ll be spending some time outdoors this weekend pulling up the last of the garden vegetation, bringing in all the flower pots and yard decorations and storing the patio furniture in the sheds until next spring. Oh, and I’ve got some daffodil bulbs to plant. But those are all pleasant chores and the sun is shining today, so I’m looking forward to getting to it!

Our new washer and dryer were delivered on Thursday. The process of clearing a path through my studio to the laundry room was simple. The removal of the old behemoths (and me sneaking in to clean the dusty floors and walls) plus them bringing in the new machines and setting them up was painless. The only down side to the new machines is that the dryer doesn’t have a light in it. But the room is well-lit so it’s all good. Surprisingly (to me anyway) is that there are only generic Owner Manuals for these machines, no user instructions. Granted, after 50 years of doing laundry it’s pretty intuitive. But I found it odd that the manuals didn’t have specific operating panel pictures or instructions. And the LG website claims there IS no user manual for our models. Oh well. I figured it out. The washer has a huge capacity - two loads for what would have formerly been three loads. 

This is my prehistoric laundry room, stripped down to nothing. The old machines are on the left and the new ones on the right. See how much better the new ones fit?!? There is actually room to move in there! The laundry room will get its facelift this winter. It’s the only room in this house that has never had a redo,  except we had the drain changed from a french drain to an actual connected-to-the-water-line drain. And floor tiles were added in 2010-ish to replace the linoleum. 

There are myriad holes in the walls behind the machines, none of which are visible in these pictures. They’ll need to be patched. Then we’ll add cabinetry and/or storage and then paint and decorate. I’m thinking it’ll be sometime in early 2022, after the Holidays. I’m collecting ideas on Pinterest now.

There was a lot of time to sew this week given the inclement weather. First I focused on my lime and light green strings and managed to get 18 blocks made. They look funky and stiff in the picture below because they still have the foundation papers on the back. I’ll remove the papers (and talk on the phone!) when Bruce has his annual wellness doctor visit this week and I’m stuck waiting in the car.

And then I tackled the green scrap crumbs and made seven blocks. Both these and the string blocks will finish at 6”, which is my go-to size for these filler blocks for quilts. 

I’m sharing these blocks at Scrappy Saturday. I love participating in the Rainbow Scrap Challenge and will begin finishing up this year’s rainbow quilts beginning next month.  But this week I was mostly on a small scrappy quilt finishing mission, and I have three little quilts to show you. They’ll all be headed to Quilts for Kids.

This is the lime green Soccer quilt. It measures 39.5” x 47.5”. The quilting is a large stipple with variegated green thread.  It was put together from bright green and black/white almost-WOF (width of fabric) strips donated to Quilts for Kids. I had to use some green strips to make it wider along the sides.

The backing is this familiar newspaper print that I’d like to get used up. It has a greenish tinge to it, so it was perfect. 

Next in finishing (but sewn before the green) are these two quilts from Under The Sea  themed scraps. The line on this first one was “Here Fishy Fish” by Heather Mulder Petersen. 

There were a lot of chunks and pieces from this line and another similar line of fabric, so I used it on the back, too. 

This quilt “Fishy Fishy 1” (so NOT original, I know, but who really needs to name donation quilts?) was quilted in swirls and hooks to mimic water and waves. Sort of. I guess. Whatever - it was fun! It measures 40.5 x 47.5”.

The third and final quilt was “Fishy Fishy 2”, because there were still a lot of scraps in this theme and colorrway to use. You can see some of the same fabrics but with the navy added.

The backing was this blue I had left over from the yardage I bought for my Positivity quilt backing (to be revealed before month end). 

I quilted it with stringy loops. It finished at 41.5x45”. 

These three quilts will be added to the pile and delivered to QFK next Saturday. That’s the day that I’ll be teaching the scrap workshop (the Zipper Quilt) at Quilter’s Lodge in Draper. 

One final thing before I sign off. I’ll be back on Wednesday with a special blog post. Let’s just say there will be a quilt finish (or two) to share and a giveaway! See you back here then! 

Saturday, October 9, 2021

Scraps in the LImelight

October’s color for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge is lime or light green. We did the darker half of the green spectrum earlier in the year. In between all my catch-up sewing from the last couple months plus some secret sewing to be revealed later this month, I did whip out my bucket of green scraps and sort through those I wanted to take aim at this month. But before I get to that, let me  show you the one finish I had this week.

As I said, I’m trying to play catch-up, since the studio remodel put me way behind on finishing quilts for Quilts for Kids. This is the second of the two orange scrappy quilt whose tops I sewed in September when we were focusing on orange. I showed the orange string quilt (Orangesicle Strings) last week. This orange quilt is a hodgepodge of orange blocks, parts, squares, strips and crumbs that I quilted up this week.

It measures  40.5 x 48.5” and is quilted in a loopy design. The binding is folded over from the back and machine sewn, just as our chapter of QFK prefers. I used up a couple of old orange chunks for the back. I wanted to get a picture of it outdoors with the changing leaves, but it’s been rainy and dark the last couple days. Oh well. 

In green news, I finished 12 framed four-patch blocks. My only plan for these is just to sew them up and wait for a use to come along. At 8.5” each unfinished, they’ll be a useful size to insert into hodgepodge quilt as fillers.

Yep, some dark green snuck in there, but in the overall scheme of things it doesn’t really matter. The scraps are the boss, you know. 

And here is the current quilt-in-process on the design board. Perfect for lime green month! I have the length about right, but will have to add something to the sides to bolster up the width.

It’s partially sewn and partially pinned. And I do intend to match the seam in that horizontal chevron strip.  But my first step is always just to arrange these strips and off-cuts that I get donated to see if they are cohesive enough in color and theme to cover enough area for a quilt top. 

The goal is to get this one to the finish line this week, along with two other fish-themed tops that are ready to be pin basted. Those three quilts will bring me current with QFK finishes as far as RSC colors go. Speaking of the RSC, come check out Scrappy Saturday


This week I cobbled together this little arrangement of flowers and other bits of interest from the last gasps of our garden this season. Besides roses, delphinium and zinnias, I added pods from our trumpet vine and fronds (small branches) from our dwarf Japanese maple. 

Our rains are forecast to stop about mid-week, so I hope to get my bulbs planted and bring in any last tomatoes before the first frost hits. Also, I saw a flower at the garden center that I am coveting - an echibeckia. It’s a cross between a coneflower (echinacea) and a Black-eyed Susan (rudbeckia). They were actually developed in 2015, and there are several varieties to chose from. But this is the first time I’ve seen (or at least noticed) one locally. Does it say “autumn” or what?!?

Photo Credit:

Oh, and did I tell you?!? My washing machine has been giving me trouble for a few weeks now and is getting wonkier by the week. The programming is screwy. Sometimes when I push a button to do X, it will say Y. That is, if it will even acknowledge me. I would love to go back to simpler technology. At any rate, we did our research and bought a new washer and dryer that will be delivered next Thursday. They will remove and haul away these old monster front-loaders on pedestals and install our new dryer and top-loading washer. The only catch is that I have to clear a path to the laundry room from the back basement door. That means moving 2 sewing tables and 2 plastic storage drawer units. *Sigh* 

Have a great week!

Saturday, October 2, 2021

Wishing Every Month Was October

Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.” – Albert Camus

OK, raise your hand if you love October. !!!!! 

That’s what I thought. We *all* love it. (Even those of you in the Southern Hemisphere, where October is spring). But for my purposes today, I’m talking about October autumns, and here in Northern Utah they are beautiful. Clear, blue skies, leaves changing colors, perfect days and cool, crisp evenings. Harvesting the veggies, planting bulbs and buttoning up the garden. Changing the summer wardrobe out for warmer, more snuggly clothes. The first pumpkin spice latte, hot chocolate and soup of the season. Even the cats have begun sleeping in their cozy beds! 

And this year it’s even nicer because we are happy, healthy and have so much to be grateful for. Where do I start?

Our grandson Easton graduated from naval Officer Candidate School (OCS) in Newport, Rhode  Island on Thursday. We were able to attend virtually and watch him become a fully-commissioned Ensign in the US Navy.

From here he’ll return home to Utah for a couple weeks before heading off to Charleston, South Carolina for Nuclear Engineering (submarine) school. Easton, we are so proud of you and just love you to bits! 

Some of my favorite memories of Easton include seeing him in a Jedi costume I made for him here and watching as he and his sisters made “snowmen” here (he was so little!). We wish you fair winds and a following sea. 

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

My studio remodel is finished! There may be a few tweaks here and there, but I finally feel as though there is a place for everything and everything is in its place. I changed my mind about some things and had to adapt in other areas, but overall I’m very pleased. 

For those of you who may not know, we had two floods this summer. The first was in July when water came in along a foundation wall after a thunderstorm from Hell. Water leaked in through a hairline crack between the foundation and outer brickwork (building codes in 1963 weren’t what they are today). The issue was addressed and fixed and should be good for another 100 years or more, LOL. But we had to tear out a wall in my studio and pull back our new carpeting to dry it out. Then another storm hit us in August. An exterior drain (that we were keeping an eye on) clogged up and water seeped into the basement again in my studio. Luckily, we caught the flooding in the early stages. We moved everything out of the room, fixed the drain, sandbagged, and wet vacuumed the water out. The carpet was peeled back again and dried out over the next several days. The wall had already been stripped down to the foundation (mold remediation). From there on out, it was just a matter of building back - sealing, insulating, framing, drywalling, painting, installing new window coverings, restretching the carpet. And ordering in new furniture to accommodate the room that had shrunk a few inches due to the layers of the new wall. Oh, and putting in a new design wall to replace the old one that had gotten yukky after years of use and weeks of construction dust! 

Above you can see the new west wall, blinds, and the three Hemnes bookcases. I had two of those bookcases before, but they were on opposite sides of the window. With the smaller dimensions, the bookcase formerly on the left had to be moved over to the right. This necessitated getting rid of our old oak bookcase, which I moved into my “studio annex” (the downstairs bedroom). It replaced an old bookcase held together with duct tape, which is now out in the garage holding stuff. 

The third Hemnes bookcase was delivered from IKEA on Thursday. THAT was a story in itself. I ordered it online last Friday the 24th. I got an email on Saturday that said it would be delivered on Wednesday the 28th. On Monday I got a text message that said it “could not be delivered” and to call Customer Service. What did that mean?  I called the number and got a recording to visit the website. When I went to the website to check the order status, the page was down. On Tuesday night I got a text message that said it would be delivered between 9am-9pm on Tuesday. What?!? That time frame was already past! Then immediately afterward I got a text saying that the “Monday delivery had failed”.  The next morning (Wednesday) I filed an inquiry with the transport company saying I had checked our security camera footage and no delivery attempt had been made at our premises, and when could we expect delivery? They replied that evening by email that it would be rescheduled with us as soon as it returned to the warehouse. The next morning, Thursday, there was a knock on the door, and they delivered our bookcase unannounced. And that, my friends, is the cluster-Foxtrot (you know what I mean) that is the IKEA delivery service. 

So here is the view looking from my sewing station toward the design board on the north (another scrappy quilt in progress). You will also see that I have an eight-cube credenza-type storage unit upon which I’ve set my ironing board.

Originally we were going to have the cube unit raised up on 3” bed risers. But the risers arrived from Amazon broken, so I returned them. Cousin Kim and I are both short, so we decided that this height (about 32”) was good for us without risers. I have a piece of batting under the ironing board to keep it from scratching the surface of the unit. Although it looks a tad tacky, at least this way I can remove the ironing board if I need the small end to iron sleeves or something. And the unit can always be repurposed for something else down the road.

The credenza unit houses my backing fabrics (large cuts), my flamingo bag of multi-colored scraps, African fabrics and some WIPs.

The view below is from the east wall looking west. I moved two small plastic storage units into the left corner to house neutral scraps, and completed blocks awaiting assembly into tops.

The final picture, below, is our four-table set-up that can easily handle 4 quilters. The electrical cord comes down to the center area from the lights above and allows lots of things to be plugged into the power strip without us worrying about tripping over cords on the floor. And we can clear the tables easily (two machines, small personal iron and cutting mats) to use the surface for basting quilts. The door at the very right goes outside and the door in the back by the large painting (my son Shane did that in high school) is a bathroom. 

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

And finally - the actual sewing I did this week! I finished basting two quilts and quilted two others. The first finish was this sampler quilt. The blocks were started in a class I took at a local quilt shop in 2019-2020 that was aborted because of Covid. I finished the remaining blocks this year as certain colors came up in the Rainbow Scrap Challenge. I sewed the flimsy and basted it to use for a quilting demonstration for newbies at our last Quilts for Kids workshop.

So, if you were to closely inspect the quilting (and I doubt you can see from these pictures), there is some basic stippling, some loopy designs and a hook-swirl flower on the quilt. It’s going back to Quilts for Kids, so they’ll understand the odd variations! The sampler finished at 44x58”.

The backing is a cute white-based confetti print that I had on hand. 

The second finish was the orange string quilt whose flimsy I showed last week. I’ve named it  Orange Creamsicle Strings. It measures 42x48” and was quilted with a basic stipple.

I had to add a strip down the back to make the backing wide enough. Excuse all the waviness in these pictures - the grass (at least it’s still green!) isn’t the flattest surface. But I figured I’d take advantage of the outdoors while I can!

There was more sewing too; I added borders to my Framed Pinwheel quilt, and sewed up two more scrappy flimsies. I hope to have those, as well as my Positivity quilt, finished by next weekend. I can dream, right? 

Linking up to Scrappy Saturday