Another Christmas Pillowcase

Suddenly it is September and I feel like Christmas is looming. Like a giant black raven waiting to peck my eyes out.

Anna and Elsa Pillowcase

Anna and Elsa Pillowcase

Fortunately, I want to stay away from nasty imagery so I went full force in pillowcase making department. The Anna and Elsa pillowcase is now done, which means I can pack up one family’s pillowcases and prepare to send them off around Thanksgiving.

I also cut two other Christmas pillowcases and 3 Hallowe’en pillowcases. I have a number of other Christmas fabric in the pipeline ready to go.

I cut a piece of the Anna and Elsa fabric for FOTY 2015, but really tried to avoid the faces. They aren’t creepy or anything, but I don’t want Anna or Elsa looking at me until FOTY 2015 disintegrates.

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FOTY 2014 Ready for Quilting

FOTY 2014 Top

FOTY 2014 Top

I spent Sunday getting the Fabric of the Year 2014 ready to be quilted. I am taking it to Colleen tomorrow.

I am pleased with how it came out and am excited about seeing it quilted.

FOTY 2014 Back

FOTY 2014 Back

The back went surprisingly quickly. I used just one piece of fabric for all except the joins. I wanted some space between the large scale print.

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Finished: Food Quilt #2

After a break to rest my arm, I needed to get busy with the last side of the Food Quilt #2. The YM’s friend headed off to college on Saturday and I wanted to make sure he took it with him. He won’t need it for a few months, but I’d rather he had it at school than sitting around my house.

Food Quilt #2: Finished

Food Quilt #2: Finished

I brought the quilt over Friday night and the family held it up for me. They are not experienced quilt holders, but I am pleased I was able to get a photo. It is a large piece, but I tested it on the very tall recipient and it fits him fine.

I always think striped binding looks good, so I was pleased to see that it actually does look good on this piece. I always buy stripes for binding. Now I’ll have to remember to use it more often.

Food Quilt #2 Back

Food Quilt #2 Back

I have appliqued the recipient’s name on the back to prevent theft.

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Octagon 9 Patch Returns

After whining a bit about this project, I got back in the saddle and sewed a few 9 patches. I had to cut more grey, but that was easy enough and I took the opportunity to cut some grey for the Flying Geese swap as well.

19 9 Patches

19 9 Patches

Once you start, it is hard to stop. The good part was that I needed leaders and enders for the FOTY 2014 project and these were handy and required. I scavenged leftover foreground squares and made these 9 patches. I don’t know how many I will need to complete the Octagon 9 Patch top, but these will certainly help.

They also helped complete the FOTY top. Yes, it is done. I still need to do a few things, which will need to be done this weekend, but between the donation blocks and these 9 patches, I had plenty of leaders and enders.

I am in view of being able to put this project back on the design wall and I can’t wait to see it up there again and decide on next steps.

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More Donation Blocks

FOTY-made Donation Blocks

FOTY-made Donation Blocks

I made more donation blocks last Saturday as I worked on sewing together the FOTY 2014 patches. I thought green would be good and chose a lot of medium greens, though I had to use some darker pieces as my green scrap basket dwindled. I used, mostly, grey for the background. As you will, a little pink and some other colors crept in.

Using the leaders and enders technique, I just kept sewing the 2.5″ squares in between the FOTY 2014 patches and came up with all of these donation blocks. I joked about making enough for a whole quilt, never thinking I would be able to do it. I am close, though, especially with the blocks from the other day.

I saw a quilt on Valerie’s Twitter feed that has these blocks with Flying Geese on the outside to make them into stars. I am sorely tempted, but I have so many projects that I am going to force myself just to turn these blocks in and let someone else make a pretty quilt.

I am very pleased that this will be a quilt (or quilts) that will make someone happy.

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Creative Prompt #328: Man

Renaissance Man

be a man!

Mountain Man

Tin man

he’s a family man

Gingerbread Man


53-man roster

Man up!

Transcendent Man is the documentary film that introduces the life and ideas of Ray Kurzweil, the renowned futurist who journeys the world offering his vision of a future in which we will merge with the super-intelligent machines we have created and can live forever?all within the next thirty years.

Sovereign man

9-man: An award-winning sports documentary about a streetball battle in the heart of Chinatown.

Yes Men

Third Man Records

Kennewick Man

Isle of Man

Cafeteria Man shows us that improving school food isn’t about nutrients and recipes — but vision.” – Jane Black, Food Writer (movie)

Medicine man

man down

Definition: “A man is a male human. The term man is usually reserved for an adult male, with the term boy being the usual term for a male child or adolescent. However, the term man is also sometimes used to identify a male human, regardless of age, as in phrases such as “men’s basketball“.

Like most other male mammals, a man’s genome typically inherits an X chromosome from his mother and a Y chromosome from his father. The male fetus produces larger amounts of androgens and smaller amounts of estrogens than a female fetus. This difference in the relative amounts of these sex steroids is largely responsible for the physiological differences that distinguish men from women. During puberty, hormones which stimulate androgen production result in the development of secondary sexual characteristics, thus exhibiting greater differences between the sexes. However, there are exceptions to the above for some intersex and transgender men.” (Wikipedia)

The Last Man on Earth

12 Angry Men

The 100 Year Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson (book)

straw man

Two and Half Men (TV Show)

Burning Man

The Music Man (play/musical)

Mad Men (TV Show)

Declaration of the Rights of Man

Man of Steel

Blue Man Group

The Man (2005 movie)

con man

Iron Man (2008 movie)

Museum of Man: Anthropological museum containing artifacts, folk art, and archaeological finds.

Ant-Man (movie)


Man from U.N.C.L.E. (2015 movie)

No Man is an Island

Man Booker prizes

young man

Lindow Man

origin of man

Man Bartlett is an an artist living and working in New York City. He is known for drawings, collages, videos, and online performance that often uses social media.

Man is an industry leading alternative investment provider offering a comprehensive range of transparent, dynamic and thematic trading strategies across the …

Post the direct URL (link) where your drawing, doodle, artwork is posted (e.g. your blog, Flickr) in the comments area of this post. I would really like to keep all the artwork together and provide a way for others to see your work and get familiar with your blog or website.

The Creative Prompt Project, also, has a Flickr group, which you can join to  post your responses. I created this spot so those of you without blogs and websites would have a place to post your responses.

We are also talking about this on Twitter and Instagram. Use the hashtag #CPP

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FOTY 2014 Major Progress

FOTY 2014 Major Progress

FOTY 2014 Major Progress

In between other stuff, I spent a lot of time over the weekend sewing the FOTY 2014 patches together. This quilt top has been languishing much too long. I felt like I had a layout that I liked.

There are over 350 patches that have to be removed sewn and put back in order to keep the piece in order. I put a leader/ender in between each set of patches to make it easier to keep the FOTY patches straight in my head.

In the course of sewing the patches together, I also made 19 Octagon 9 Patches and 14 donation blocks. Not shabby for ‘found blocks’.

FOTY 2014 - Patches in 9s & 12s

FOTY 2014 – Patches in 9s & 12s

I thought it was impossible that I would get it done. I got to the point where all the patches were sewn into sets of 8 and I was very happy with that. The other night I sewed those sets together, which took much less time, but required much more fiddling, because of the nesting of seams.

The piece looks together now, but it is in sets of 9 or 12 patches. I am carefully chunking all the sets in order to avoid those long seams and to nest the seams more precisely. My goal is to get the top done before Saturday, so I can show it off at the BAMQG meeting. Wish me luck!

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Pinkalicious Journal Cover Finished

Pinkalicious Closed

Pinkalicious Closed

I finally finished Pinkalicious over the weekend. I am happy with the front cover and the overall look of the piece. I am not happy overall. There are small seams close to the edges and that makes pressing the edges into a crisp line. It also makes it hard to sew the edges closed.

I tried a lot of things when I made the Orange Crush Journal Cover and I guess I wasn’t thinking about the things I learned. I drifted back to small pieces and put them too close to the edge.

Sewing is like that. It takes awhile to get things down and in the case of mosaic piecing there is some reliance on the size of the available scraps.

Pinkalicious Open Back

Pinkalicious Open Back

Fortunately, these journal covers are a good way to practice mosaic piecing and a great leaders and enders project.

I don’t know what the perfect mosaic pieced journal cover is. I don’t if there is such a thing, but I will keep looking.

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Portland Pillowcase Progress

I couldn’t resist the alliteration. College Pillowcase Progress did not have the same ring to it. Clearly, I am easily amused.

Back-to-School Pillowcase

Back-to-School Pillowcase

I made three pillowcases for the Young Man, though one may go to his cousin. First, was the Back-to-School Pillowcase, which I almost didn’t make until I found the fabric. It wasn’t babyish and he approved it. I talked about the fabric the other day in the Random Bits and Bobs post. The fabric is still cartoony, but ok enough for him not to be embarrassed.

I thought yellow would be a good cuff and found this Reflections yardage, into which I had NEVER cut (bad, Jaye, bad!). It is a really good yellow and that is perhaps why I was saving it. Off it went. I cut a piece for FOTY 2015, so I can remember I had it for a million years before I used it.

I did send the Back-to-School pillowcase along with the Minkee pillowcase off in his first care package. He hasn’t received it yet, that he has told me so that is more news for later.

Next on the pile was a Pokemon fabric. I think I mentioned that the YM saw it and generously thought that his cousin would like a pillowcase out of it. He said that he has so many great pillowcases already. Hhhmm.

Pokemon Pillowcase #1

Pokemon Pillowcase #1

It was a fabric I chose for one of the months where themes for the College Pillowcase Project were difficult, such as February. His pronouncement put a monkey wrench in my plan. I wasn’t planning on using Pokemon fabric in a quilt, so I made a pillowcase and figured I could decide where it would go later. If nothing else, it would be a donation. It turned out that I had enough for a pillowcase and a cuff, so I made two and one will go to the YM anyway.

Again, I used the Reflections fabric for the cuff. It is a similar color to the Pikachu character and it was off the shelf, so handy.

In looking at the fabric, I can see why the YM might not want it as a pillowcase in his dorm. I am having, and have had, a hard time getting my heart and brain to realize that he is a grown up now.

Pokemon Pillowcase #2

Pokemon Pillowcase #2

The Pokemon Pillowcase #2 uses a solid as the body of the pillowcase and just a Pokemon cuff. Hopefully, this bit of Pokemon fabric will not embarrass him. If it does, he doesn’t have to use it.

Festive Trees, Makower UK

Festive Trees, Makower UK

Next I want to make him a Christmas pillowcase. I found some festive and not too trite or girly fabric that may be his Christmas pillowcase. There is a lot of pink, though, so I am on the fence about a cuff. Not pink, for sure. Perhaps that gold shown in the center tree or the light green right above it towards the top. If it doesn’t end up as suitable for the YM, then I can use it for another niece or nephew. There is some prep, but this pillowcase could be a leaders and enders project as well.

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The O9P Hump

Math is a problem.

Well, math is a problem for me. I try to avoid it where possible, but as a quiltmaker, I clearly can’t avoid it all the time. I do have strategies. If my blocks are on the design wall, I can count them and don’t have to do actual math. I live with brilliant math geniuses to whom i explain my math problem and they figure it out. Usually, they say, “oh you just have to factor this number into….” then I am back sitting in 7th grade math class the horror that I could not understand the teacher dawning afresh. As a purely self preservation tactic, I start drifting off into color and visuals land while they sound like the teacher on Charlie Brown cartoon (WAH WAH WAH) in the background. I drift back when they give me the answer and everyone is happy. Well, at least I am happy. I don’t think the boys really care or not. They know they will have to explain the same concept to me again at some future date.

O9P Not on the Design Wall

O9P Not on the Design Wall

The problem really comes in when my blocks are not on the design wall and I can’t get a sense of where I need to go. I believe the last time I worked on this was sometime around the end of April. I think I got it off the design wall so I could work on Field Day Zipper and the Food Quilt #2. I don’t really remember.

It is pretty easy to just sew 9 patch, except for the hump. I need more foreground/colored squares. The problem is I don’t know how many I should cut so that I can finish the 9 patches I need and not have too many leftover. This means math and I have been avoiding it. Or I could just cut a strip off each piece of yardage and not worry about the leftovers. Isn’t as though there is a shortage of fabric in my house.

Lots of humps in my life at the moment.

This would be a great project to move forward on as I stitch the FOTY 2014 pairs together, so perhaps I should do some math?

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Donation Blocks

September Donation Blocks

September Donation Blocks

I was finally able to make some donation blocks!

Unlike Pam, I do not have piles of 2.5″ squares laying around, though I am starting to think I should. I cut the foreground squares from a FQ I found that I won’t use in a quilt. I decided to make the blocks, because I had some leftovers from a One Hour Basket I made. That fabric became the background. There isn’t a ton of contrast, but they are pleasant blocks. The best part is they will go to a good cause. I haven’t done as much charity work this year and it makes me feel good to add to the BAMQG charity pile.

As I started to sew the FOTY 2014 together on Friday (started last week, but got really serious on Friday), I realized that I needed leaders and enders. After I sew each FOTY pair, I need to sew something in between so that I can keep the FOTY patches in order. I have been using the Octagon 9 Patch as leaders and enders pretty regularly, but I am at a weird place with that project, so for the moment it won’t work. I gave away a bunch of my neutrals, but dug around and found some suitable greys for more donation blocks. I used leftovers of some Bonnie and Camille greys. They are a little too taupe for me, so I have been using them for projects I don’t plan to keep. Since I also have a lot of green scraps, which I don’t use much, I cut some random 2.5″ squares from those and made a couple of blocks.

Green & Grey Donation Blocks

Green & Grey Donation Blocks

Now I have a random thought to make 12 more and have enough for a quilt. I suppose it is possible since FOTY has a lot of pairs needing sewing, but the cutting of the 2.5″ squares – enough to make a quilt before next week is a little daunting.

I think it will be better if I get over my Octagon Nine Patch hump so I can make progress on that project, not that donation blocks are a bad thing.

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Fabrications Quilt Shop

Fabrications, Healdsburg, Calif.

Fabrications, Healdsburg, Calif.

Here is irony: the last time I went to this shop was when the Young Man was a baby. He was in some kind of carrier or sling. I went last week on my way back from dropping him off at college.

This is a small shop, but it is right on the main square of Healdsburg and it is crammed with fabric. I found a few pieces that will work for the Improv quilt.

By this time I was getting into the fabric equivalent of a diabetic coma, but it was fun to stop in this shop and realize how close it is to me (about 2 hours) and worth the drive, because there are other nice shops and good places to eat nearby.

There were two people working and they were watching us the whole time, but they weren’t unfriendly. I meant to ask about the local quilt people around, but I forgot. I wondered if this shop was mainly visited by tourists or if there was a thriving quilt community. Oh well. Next time.





20150902_151526sm 20150902_151534sm

Fabrications, Healdsburg, Calif.

Fabrications, Healdsburg, Calif.

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Creative Prompt #327: Grill

gas grill

“A grille or grill (French word from Latin craticula, small grill) is an opening of several slits side by side in a wall or metal sheet or other barrier, usually to let air or water enter and/or leave but keep larger objects including animals in or out.[1]” (Wikipedia)

charcoal grill

George Foreman Grill


backyard grill

Tadich Grill (San Francisco)

Definition: “Grilling is a form of cooking that involves dry heat applied to the surface of food, commonly from above or below (as in North America).

Grilling usually involves a significant amount of direct, radiant heat, and tends to be used for cooking meat quickly. Food to be grilled is cooked on a grill (an open wire grid such as a gridiron with a heat source above or below), a grill pan (similar to a frying pan, but with raised ridges to mimic the wires of an open grill), or griddle (a flat plate heated from below).[1] Heat transfer to the food when using a grill is primarily via thermal radiation. Heat transfer when using a grill pan or griddle is by direct conduction. In the United States, when the heat source for grilling comes from above, grilling is termed broiling.[2] In this case, the pan that holds the food is called a broiler pan, and heat transfer is by thermal radiation.

Direct heat grilling can expose food to temperatures often in excess of 260 °C (500 °F). Grilled meat acquires a distinctive roast aroma and flavor from a chemical process called the Maillard reaction. The Maillard reaction only occurs when foods reach temperatures in excess of 155 °C (310 °F).[3]

Studies have shown that cooking beef, pork, poultry, and fish at high temperatures can lead to the formation of heterocyclic amines, benzopyrenes, and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, which are carcinogens.[4][5][6] Marination may reduce the formation of these compounds.[7] Grilling is often presented as a healthy alternative to cooking with oil, although the fat and juices lost by grilling can contribute to drier food.[citation needed]“(Wikipedia)

John’s Grill (San Francisco)

In food

  • Barbecue grill, a device or surface used for cooking food, usually fuelled by gas or charcoal, or the part of a cooker that performs this function
  • Grilling, a form of cooking that involves direct heat
  • A restaurant that serves grilled food, such as a “bar and grill”
  • A Flattop grill cooking device often used in restaurants, especially diners


  • Grillz, a 2005 rap single by Nelly
    • A Parody of the song by the German rap-group K.I.Z.
  • Grill Music Venue, an Irish nightclub located in Letterkenny, County Donegal



  • Grill (jewelry), a form of dental jewelry commonly associated with hip hop
  • Grill (philately), a pattern of indentations on a postage stamp
  • Grille, architectural element
  • Grille (motor vehicle), an opening in the bodywork of a vehicle to allow air to enter
  • Grille (artillery), a self-propelled artillery piece used by Germany during World War II
  • Grill (cryptology), method used chiefly early on, before the advent of the cyclometer, by the mathematician-cryptologists of the Polish Cipher Bureau in decrypting the German Enigma machine
  • Grille (cryptography), a technique for encrypting a plaintext by writing it onto a sheet of paper through a pierced sheet
  • Grille, a decorative window Muntin for simulating separate panes
  • Grillwork, decorative grating

Post the direct URL (link) where your drawing, doodle, artwork is posted (e.g. your blog, Flickr) in the comments area of this post. I would really like to keep all the artwork together and provide a way for others to see your work and get familiar with your blog or website.

The Creative Prompt Project, also, has a Flickr group, which you can join to  post your responses. I created this spot so those of you without blogs and websites would have a place to post your responses.

We are also talking about this on Twitter and Instagram. Use the hashtag #CPP

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Forget Me Knots Quilt Shop

Forget-Me-Knots, Bandon, Ore

Forget-Me-Knots, Bandon, Ore

This store is RIGHT next door to an ice cream shop. Kids and spouses can have a nice time there while you browse. 😉

This shop has a lot of panels and kits. A LOT. The panels are great and I bought a couple to make Thanksgiving decorations. I had better get on it!

They had fabric, but not the tons that other shops had. I bought a few pieces.

The store has a lot of gifts, which is what tourist town shops have and that was great. Some of the fabrics were novelty sea related fabrics, which I had never seen before.

'Pastel' room

‘Pastel’ room

The shop also had a lot of interesting patterns.

I think the strength of the shop was really the panels. They had lots and lots of panels, especially in the Thanksgiving realm (it is nice to see that some retail isn’t going straight from Hallowe’en to Christmas!). I bought two panels with which to make some Thanksgiving table runners. Am I trying to fill my time now that my YM is gone? Probably, at least mentally.

Pumpkins and Gourds tablerunner

Pumpkins and Gourds tablerunner

Thanksgiving, as you may remember, is ‘my’ holiday in the family. Lately, I have been feeling a bit of a slacker, because I really don’t have any Thanksgiving decorations. One of my SILs sends a flower arrangement every year, which is the sum total of my decorations. I have wanted to make napkins, but the thought of sewing 24+ brown and beige napkins makes me run away from the sewing machine screaming. When I saw the panel with the pumpkins and gourds, I could imagine having it in my house. The colors are a little brighter than normal Thanksgiving colors and it isn’t boring. It is also a bit arty. It also doesn’t need much piecing, so almost all I would need to do is quilt it. STOP laughing! 😉

The one panel will make two table runners. I might piece the leaves to the end of one to make it a little longer. They are supposed to be coasters, but I am not making coasters as we have about 30 sets of coasters. We will see.

Second panel

Second panel

I set up three tables at Thanksgiving and I don’t want the ‘kids’ table to feel bad, especially since they usually don’t get china, so I bought another panel for them. What I will do with this one is cut off the smaller panels and sew them together in a long line, then quilt it. If I have time, I will quilt the wreath and make it into a table mat for the coffee table.

These panels are already washed so there is hope for me to finish them.

Like some of the other shops Forget Me Knots was participating in the Row by Row Experience. The lady helping pushed us hard to get the kit. Not my jam so I resisted.

They had a lot of notions, a large classroom and generally a large space. I found this store to have a lot to look at and it took me awhile to figure out that there weren’t as many fabric bolts as I originally thought.

I liked this shop. The lady was friendly, they had fabric and notions I hadn’t seen before and the location was convenient. Look for the ice cream shop. It is huge and that is what we noticed. The quilt shop is in a large building, but they need better signage.




Location: 640 2nd St SE, Bandon, OR 97411
(541) 347-9021


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FOTY 2014: Over the Hump

Sometimes a little whining goes a long way. I got down to business after my last FOTY 2014 post and am now sewing the piece together. Yes, the piece is arranged to my satisfaction and I am on to the sewing part.

My driving force: I need all the pieces to be on the design wall. At the moment the very top and very bottom row are hanging off. I also want the whole thing off the design wall and in the hands of Colleen. I need to move on to other projects. I need the design wall for other projects.

Is the piece perfect?


Will I ever make a perfect piece in this series?

Probably not.

Will I keep trying?


FOTY 2014: Final Layout

FOTY 2014: Final Layout

Before I started sewing, this photo shows the piece as it was laid out in the configuration in which I decided to piece it.

I worked on the layout for hours yesterday and then after I started making dinner, I deliberately did not look at it.

When I got back to my workroom the following day, I decided to look at it and rearrange the patches.

These quilts will never have a perfect gradation. The nature of the fabric, the color combinations in the fabrics and the motifs as well as contrast make perfect gradation difficult. Still, I have done a good job with the parameters of my challenge and I am pretty happy with the layout.

Some process photos. You have to look carefully to see the differences because they are subtle, but that is part of the process:

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