Saturday, February 25, 2023


I would call it the Week From Hell, but it would more accurately be described as the week from the North Pole. Frankly, though, some of hell’s warmth would be welcomed about now! LOL.  

Beginning Tuesday afternoon and continuing through all of Wednesday, the Salt Lake Valley was plastered with at least 18” of snow on the valley floor.  The schools reverted to online classes and many businesses were closed. Those people who live on the benches (foothills) of the mountains that surround the valley got even greater accumulations, and the mountain communities were inundated. I think we’ll have no major water issues this year, but snow loads on roofs and trees and plants has been concerning. I’ve been out to brush off my rose bushes a couple times. I didn’t take pictures because I’m a dunce at those things. 

The frigid, moist air seems to have finally permeated the basement where my studio is, and I can’t seem to get warm. Perhaps, however,  it’s the loss of 40 pounds of insulating weight? I’ve been wearing three pair of socks at a time, plus two to three layers of tops / sweaters. 

Some days I just couldn’t bear to sew, even with the supplemental studio space heater going, so my production, like my weight, is down. But I do have a few things to show you.

I finished 10 pink crumb candy blocks. I will put these in with the other colors of crumb candy blocks, because everyone likes pink candy or bubblegum, right? The rest of my crumbs went into making a row of crumbs 4” tall by 40” wide, which I added to the top of The Creature From the Pink Circus quilt top. That little quilt top is sandwiched up and waiting to be quilted in the next week. 

My primary focus was layering and then quilting two more lovely Community Quilt tops that were sent to me by my friend McGill in SC. Her kids quilts are always such beautiful eye candy and a joy to quilt.

As I quilted this cheerful 40x50” quilt using loops and hearts, I had fun checking out all her various scraps. There were so many that I have also had over the years, so it was like sharing a walk down memory lane! Thanks, McGill!

Isn’t the backing pretty? 

This second quilt from McGill is my favorite. I am so in love with the saturated colors and lovely Tula Pink fabrics. It measures 43x45”. 

This was quilted with a basic stipple; light gray on the front and a medium gray on the back. The binding was a fun piece of Allison Glass SunPrint fabric I had in my stash. I love how the colors and intensity match the front and pop on the back. 

On Friday I had my annual mammogram in the morning. I’m glad that’s over for another year. At noon I took my son Ryan to an eye surgery re-check appointment. He had a lasik-type procedure done the day prior and wasn’t cleared to drive until the re-check. We then went out to lunch and just had a great few hours talking and hanging out. 

The only other thing I managed to accomplish this week was to work on fixing up these donation blocks. They were given to me from our Quilts for Kids chapter to “do something with”. On three of them I had to replace stained white background pieces. Two blocks needed to be torn apart and the piecing corrected. The last problem block is the basket block at the center top. The basket is portion is barely visible due to poor contrast. 

I had a scrap of yellow print to replace it, but the fabrics and quilt tops in The Cubbyholes of Shame were hissing and booing (the hooligans!), wanting me to be done with the dang thing already. So the blocks are in Time Out until I make my decision. I’d love to hear what you think…. Replace the basket or not?

Have a good week!
Linking up to Scrappy Saturday at Angela’s So Scrappy blog. 

Saturday, February 18, 2023

More Quilt Finishes and the Rest of the Fabric Tour

Usually when Blogger goes berserk on me, it at least lets me know that there are unsaved changes to a post. But last week? No...... So the last part of my studio fabric storage “tour” flew off into the ether, never to be seen again. (Like a Chinese spy balloon?)  

So let’s quickly dispatch with that and then move on to this week’s Rainbow Scrap (pink!) progress and the quilt finishes for the week.

These are the bottom two shelves of the leftmost (of three) bookshelves. The upper shelf holds two WIP quilts (another Zip quilt to be sewn - FOR ME THIS TIME! LOL) and the Red Ribbons quilt that needs to be finished. The rest are fabric pulls for three more personal quilts and several pillowcases, also personal.

The bottom shelf is my autumn and Halloween fabric for a quilt or two I never even got started last year. I think there’s also some Independence Day fabric there. And on the floor is my plastic tote of Framed Four Patch blocks from RSC 2022. There is a line through the label meaning it’s ready to be assembled.

This is what we’ll dissect next (the right two bookshelves):

Left Bookshelf (top down): 
Purple scrap tote on purple yardage, Kaffe Fassett fabrics
Aqua scrap tote on aqua/teal fabrics; Yellow scrap tote on yellow/gold fabrics
Solid scraps and yardage
The remainder of that are the Cubbies of Shame. I’ll come back to those in a moment.

Right Bookshelf (top down):
Red scrap tote and red yardage
Black/Gray/Brown yardage; Light Blue scrap tote on light blue yardage
Pink scrap tote on pink yardage; Orange scrap tote on orange yardage
Dark blue yardage and scraps
All the Greens - scraps and yardage
Bottom shelf; Christmas fabrics and scraps; shirtings
On floor in front: another group of quilt tops sent from Jo Kramer in IA (Jo’s Country Junction) as I’m one 
     of her quilt finishers. These will be added to the Cubbies of Shame

Cubbies of Shame:

Kids and Novelty yardage, paired and unpaired with like colors/themes.
Quilt tops to have a backing made, then to be layered, quilted and bound.
In baggies and plastic tote: groupings of like-themed or like-colored scraps - quilt “kits” that I pull out to sew on, a few at a time each month. 

Yes, I’ve got a backlog here to last me well into next year and beyond. Or maybe into next decade, LOL. Therefore, with a grateful heart and humble apologies, I have to ask my generous friends and donors to hold off sending things for awhile. Now, if you’re OK with sending larger fabric pieces that can be used as backings and/or passed directly on to Quilts for Kids, that would be awesome. I just cannot sew them all, and I’m not sure if that was ever expected or not. But everything intended for Quilts for Kids goes to Quilts for Kids, whether it’s in the form of a quilt or fabric to be made into quilts by one of our hard workers.  

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * 
Now, let’s get to the fun stuff - pink, girly February in the Rainbow Scrap Challenge.

First, I made 12 Split Nine blocks.

And then I started working on little crumb blocks, but I’ll save those for next week. Instead, I’ll show you the three quilts I was able to quilt, bind and label this week. Just in time for our monthly QFK workshop tomorrow!

Pink Checkerboard blocks (donated by Catherine in NJ) supplemented with some 4-patch blocks and one pink orphan block from my stash. Finished size: 40x50”. The backing was the last of an old sheet, the first half of which backed a pink quilt from last year!

This next one has a bit of a history to share. The two circus border strips (a J. Wecker Frisch fabric) were a gift to me from Nann; they actually came from her friend Dorothy (how appropriate! The lion in the panel reminds me of The Cowardly Lion. But I digress....).  The wild pink and red diamonds, which really should be turned the other way in a perfect world, seemed to scream Circus to me. So this Tula Pink fabric (from her Tabby Road collection) was included, along with some dark pink and white stripe fabric. Four quick seams, and two side strips later, and an outrageous circus quilt was born. 

The backing used the last chunks of these Kaffe and Kaffe Collective fabrics. I would’ve felt bad doing that, but with the solid designers of the front fabric to keep the Kaffes company, I figured the Quilt Police would turn a blind eye. 

This little quilt, which took next to no time, finished at 39.5 x 44.5”.

And here come the elephants! This penultimate elephant quilt is finished! The last one will be done in March, but for now, isn’t this just the cutest quilt ever? 

Happy Elephants finished at 39.5 x 44.5”.  I sure wish I had lots more of that border fabric!! 

So, what do you do when you have really enjoyed your week sewing pink circus quilts and elephant quilts? You make one more to keep the fun going!  Here is my pink “Creature” quilt in progress. It named itself  The Creature From the Pink Circus.

At this point, only the central portion between the hot pink starred width-of-fabric strips is sewn. I started with a vintage elephant appliqué (also from Dorothy’s stash, courtesy of Nann) and machine appliquéd it down to a cute trimmed fat quarter - designed by Tamara Kate, one of my all-time fave designers and purchased from her Spoonflower shop. I added a polka-dot balloon appliqué too. 

The rest is just cobbled together, medallion-style, with leftover blocks of strings, waffles, Twin Sisters, Bullseye Courthouse Steps, and Chaser blocks. I think I’ll probably replace that ugly top strip with some 6” scrap blocks. That’s on the agenda for the coming week. Also coming are two adorable quilts from my friend McGill in South Carolina. One of hers is already basted, and the other has the backing made and will be basted, along with the Creature from the Pink Circus this week. I can’t wait!

Have a great week, friends!

Saturday, February 11, 2023

Three Finishes and Studio Tour

This week, three little quilts “got their wings” (were officially finished) - and none of them are pink. Two are little blue quilts from January and one is an RSC finish of blocks from last year. I will be getting to some pink quilt tops and some Community Quilts once I spend this afternoon pin/spray basting them. I’m hoping to get five finished next week, but if I could only get three done this week (did I really just say “only” out loud?) then I’m not going to hold my breath for five finishes next week. Whatever happens, happens. 

Let’s see which little quilts got their wings. 

First up is this cute little Bow Ties quilt. These were some blocks I did for last year’s Rainbow Scrap Challenge. 

It measures 42x48} and was quilted with a simple stipple. The backing is a piece sent to me by Jo Kramer for her Community Quilts donation quilt program,.

As usual, this one will to to Quilts for Kids.

Next up are the two blue quilts pieced in January. This first one, pieced with dark and bright blue strings, reminds me of frosted winter window panes. So I’m calling it Frosted Window Panes.

It finished at 42x48”, was quilted with loops, and used up most of the rest of this blue print for the backing. The remaining bits will be cut up for Zipper blocks. 

The final finished quilt this week was this Creature From The Blue Lagoon quilt, using leftover blocks, chunks and all manner of scraps. The finished quilt is 44.5 x 60.5”. I forgot to take a backing photo. 

Working with my pink strings, I finished sewing 63 string blocks at 6.5”, unfinished size. I safety-pinned them into four groups of 15 blocks for the QFK quilt kit makers. 

The remaining three blocks will hopefully be incorporated into my pink Creature quilt later this month. I’m open for ideas for a pink Creature quilt name (hint, hint). Last time I did a pink Creature quilt, it was The Creature From the Bubblegum Factory, LOL. 

This next photo is a bad one, but it shows that this next elephant quilt is ready for basting. I promise that despite how wonky it looks on the design board, half hanging and half pinned, that it is squared up. I’ve also assembled a backing from scrap chunks, so this will be a finish next week hopefully!!

What follows is a mini-tour of my studio. I’ve had three separate requests (from Linda, Kat and Anonymous) to show how I store my fabrics and scraps. First up, here is a photo taken of my one studio wall after the flood and remodel from about 18 months ago. It will give you a “lay of the land”, so to speak. 

Although things have changed since this photo was snapped, it is the window wall that I’ll be talking about and showing pictures of. I’ll start on the left with the two plastic storage drawers, then move to the right and eight cubbies on which the ironing station rests, then finish with the three IKEA bookshelves. Ready?

Scrap storage for (top down): Kona White, White/black and black white scraps, Kona Snow, Zip Block contrast squares), Low Volume, Brown, Black. On top of this unit rests my bolts (yardage) of Kona White, Kona Snow, Kona Black and Kona Red. 

Next up: 

Fused scraps (appliqué leftovers), Zip Block ingredients, gray scraps, Linens and scraps pulled to work with them (someday I’ll get back to these, and the drawer that houses the Orphan blocks and Parts Department. 

Moving to the right under the ironing station are:

Top Two: lighter (L) and darker (R) backing pieces for Quilts for Kids.
Bottom Left: precuts. 
Bottom Right (in polka dot bin) Low Volume print yardage and pieces greater than a fat quarter.

Moving to the right, here are the other four bins

Top Left: paper, phone books and lightweight backings for string blocks
Top Right (polka dot bin) African fabrics
Bottom Left: backings for personal quilts
Bottom Right: flannel and muslin

Next, we’ll tackle the bookcases. 

Bookcase #1 (two pix)

I think I missed the very first shelf . That houses a long-term clothing project I’m working on. 

Top Down: miscellaneous string blocks, 2022 RSC Bear Paws and on top of that plastic container are RSC 2021 Chips Blocks to be assembled.

Next: three current RSC projects in their storage boxes.

Lower shelf: two more current RSC boxes

* * * * * * * * * * * *
Blogger stopped working at this point; I will recreate the rest of the tour in next week’s weekly post. 

Saturday, February 4, 2023

Pink February

Hi all! It’s been another fun and busy week, and I have a lot of pictures to show you. 

On Monday, I went out to lunch with my DDIL Kim. We dined lightly on soup and salad at Olive Garden, then went to one of our local fabric stores where she picked out the fabrics for a Christmas quilt that she asked me to make her and Ryan this year. Let me show you the fabric we got…

I can’t link to the inspiration quilt, but it was from a 2012 quilt-along from Sheila at Thought and Found, a blog that is no longer active. The pattern was called Oh My Stars!, not to be confused with Pat Sloan’s quilt of the same name. Anyway, I’ll basically be doing sawtooth stars in various sizes on a field of red. I’ll work on it throughout the year and give occasional updates.

I did finish a quilt for Quilts for Kids this week. 

This is the second of two quilts from a stack of blocks that I got from QFK a couple years ago. I had to unpick and re-sew four blocks to correct (glaring) errors.  The yellow floral border and the backing fabric are the last of  2 pieces from my stash. The finished quilt is 46x60”.

Then it was time to dig into my overflowing pink scrap bin. When the dust cleared, I had 15 Little Bricks blocks

Four of the Four-in-Nine blocks with gray

and 5 Chaser blocks.

The Chaser blocks will go into a “Creature” quilt later this month that I’ll cobble together from scraps, miscellaneous orphan blocks and roadkill to make a Frankenstein-esque quilt of some sort.

I also pulled some donated pink 16-patch blocks (from Catherine in NJ) and made some four-patch blocks from scraps to round out another quilt top.

On Wednesday I spent 2-3 very enjoyable hours layering and basting the next batch of four quilts to be quilted (while bebopping around the studio dancing to some great Motown vibes), all of which I plan to focus on next week.

My breaks from quilting next week will consist of sewing down these pink strings into 6.5” blocks. I’d like to get 30-36 total…

… and putting together his elephant quilt top.

On Tuesday, my Weight Watchers weigh-in show another 2 pound drop, which now puts me over the 35-pounds lost mark. I won’t bore you with the details every week, but will be noting (for myself if nobody else) every 5-pound incremental mark. And my sweet friend Ruby was back from her trip to Jordan and Egypt bearing gifts for the entire WW class. Because she is so generous like that. She’ll be joining Cousin Kim and I once again for our Sunday Sewing tomorrow. 

Perhaps the highlight of my week was receiving another generous box of donated fabric for Quilts for Kids from my friend Wanda. I was so excited to see it and fondle it and divide it into piles for future use, that I didn’t get a picture of it all. But here’s a partial “re-created” shot. Thanks again, Wanda. You’re the best!

Linking to Scrappy Saturday for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge.