Saturday, September 9, 2023

Some September Sewing

Not much news this week. But let’s jump right into my sewing and we’ll chat along the way...

In the continuing saga of the Christmas Stars quilt, I did finally sew the final ten 8.5” (unfinished size) to bring my total of these up to 50. See, I CAN count, hehe.

These 50 stars were constructed with the 4-at-a-time No Waste method for flying geese, which are the star legs. When I sewed the first 19 stars of the 12.5” size, I made the star legs using my Easy Angle ruler to construct 8 half square triangle (HSTs) and sewed them together that way.

For the next size - the 4.5” stars, of which I have to make 89 (not 69 as I previously misstated) - I will be using the Easy Eight method for HSTs. For that I’ll put two squares right sides together, draw diagonals on the back of the red, and sew a ¼” seam on each side of the lines. Next I’ll cut them north to south and east to west, and then on the drawn diagonals to yield 8 HSTs at 1.5” each. It’ll speed up the star point process, but I’ll still have to fiddle with the little pieces to get the entire star assembled. I’m not a fan of tiny sewing, and 1.5” is tiny to me. But I love my son and daughter-in-law, so I’ve got to put on my big girl panties and continue plugging away on this Christmas quilt for them. I did make the first prototype star this week, and it looks as though there may be some star points lost. Hopefully, practice will help me improve! One down, 88 more to go...

I was able to dig into my aqua and teal scraps for this month’s color in the Rainbow Scrap Challenge. First up were these seven Four in Nine blocks, which my friend Cathy reminded me (thanks, Cathy!) are called Thrifty Blocks. 

Of the nine blocks you see above, two were stitched with a dark gray constant and the other seven were stitched with a navy constant. The camera in my iPhone and the computer cannot pick up the difference in those colors. But suffice it to say that this now completes the making of these blocks, and I’ll be assembling two quilts sometime over the next few months (onceIgetthedangChristmasStarsquiltsewn).

I also sewed the final Chaser Block (a Cynthia Brunz pattern). Assembly time? See above paragraph.

There was one quilt finish this week, the first of three quilts from my 2022 Framed Four Patch blocks for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge. This one uses the reds and oranges.

It’s a very bright quilt, and I quilted it simply with loops. It measures 40x48”. The backing used three scrap chunks, and the Elmo print just makes me so happy!

On the non-sewing front, I spent all day Thursday cooking some very fattening (but delicious) Hungarian food for my Cousin Carrie. She has finished her first round of chemo, and the results are looking fairly good. The second round is in two more weeks. Carrie has been losing weight too quickly, though, so we (Cousin Kim and I) decided we needed to fatten her up. Goulash (Gulyas) and Hungarian Potatoes (Rakott Krumpli) to the rescue, along with Mac and Cheese. The potatoes were from our garden. Sometime in October I’ll make Carrie another batch of food, and I’m thinking lasagna, cheese and chili meatloaf, and whatever she may request more of!! It’s all stuff that I won’t eat - I love it but it has long since been off my healthy eating plan. So it’s fun to get to cook those things again. I’ll probably have to streamline my cooking process, though, because a day on my feet on the hard kitchen floor saw my ankles swell and everything from my knees down scream in pain. I took a water pill and 2 Tylenol PM’s, went to bed at 9:30 and slept ten and a half hours. Woke up feeling just fine. 

Have a great week, and don’t forget to check out all the other fun blocks and quilts at Scrappy Saturday for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge. 


  1. You're getting there with your Christmas Stars, Cathy! Keep going! The framed 4 patches in warm colors make such a happy quilt. Someone's going to love that. You are so kind to cook for your cousin - those dishes sound yummy!

  2. I love your stars. What I have learned for the very small pieces (works just as well for large pieces) is to starch my fabric to the point it is almost papery. StaFlo starch works well for this step. The starch helps to keep the wee bits under control. OR you can look at any ‘missing star points’ as just being hidden by a nebulae or a cloud. BTW - your stars remind me that I need to pull my star quilt project out of the depths of Mt. Scrapddom.😁. Kathy

  3. Great job on the Christmas Stars. To easily work with small 1.5" pieces (what I usually work with), press half of the HST to the dark side and half to the light side. Then, when you join the 2 HSTs to make the star point, take one of each and press the middle seam open. It helps with the bulk. In order to keep all your star's points, practice, practice, practice. I can never get my HST right when I use the 8-at-a-time method. Just saying. Take care. ;^)

  4. P.S. Love, love, love your Framed Four Patch quilt. Congrats on this sunny finish! ;^)

  5. I love that happy orange and red quilt! The Christmas stars will come along just fine, I'm sure. Remember that stars themselves are not perfect. If I had time I would offer to make all those tiny stars for you-- I love the little pieces! Good luck and happy sewing!

  6. Congrats on finishing up those Christmas blocks, Cathy, along with your AQUA blocks AND an awesome donation quilt!!!

  7. Pleased your cousin enjoyed your home cooking. Loved the Framed Four Patch finish. Really eye catching , bright and cheerful, finished nicely with the pieced binding. Good aqua blocks too. Have a good week, Cathy.

  8. Lots of great stiching here, 50 stars is great going. The framed four patch is a bright and happy quilt. How thoughtful of you to cook yummy food for your cousin, doing chemo is hard going. I wish her well in her cancer journey.

  9. Can’t wait to see the Christmas quilt all done! It’s already a winner in my book! The framed nine patches made up a wonderful quilt too! Yay for you! I’m glad Carrie’s first round went well. If she has the appetite to eat goulash, Hungarian potatoes and Mac n Cheese, that’s awesome! After my chemo, I craved Mexican! And I was hungry too! So go, Kim and Cathy, feed that girl!!

  10. Your Elmo print makes me happy, too! So do all your blocks, and your lovely framed four patch finish. Good luck with the tiny Christmas stars, they are making a wonderful quilt.

  11. That sounds like a Christmas galaxy! You have another nice assortment on exhibit this week.

  12. Love reading your posts. They're entertaining and inspiring. I've had this cute kitty pannel for a while that I've surrounded with black and white bow tie blocks..needing something more . Yhe aqua black white blocks are just the ticket. Perfect! Thanks.
    Just to reminis, still enjoying your beautiful rosebushes. Yumm.


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