Three Quilts to Quilt

The Octagon 9 Patch, the Stepping Stones n.2 and the BAMaQG Color Round Robin are all at the quilter. I took them on my way to Sisters. It was kind of a ridiculous stop, but I had to take the time when I had it. We did the speediest dropoff ever and then got on the road to Sisters.

Interesting Half Hexie Progress

I’d love to say this piece was in the finishing process, but it is so far from the finishing process that lying wouldn’t even cover what I was doing. I am, however, working on this piece. It is slow going, which is fine when I don’t have other handwork that I must do.

Half Hexie First Borders
Half Hexie First Borders

Recently, I bought papers to fill in the border of the half hexie piece. I needed some triangles and some diamonds. I want to create a full stop at least on one side, so I picked out a dark grey (charcoal) with small white dots and basted some pieces. The fabric is not a pin dot.

It is a little bit of a shift to insert these extra shapes, but I got into it. It is kind of funny to see the edge done. I wonder if the grey is too dark considering the overall cheerful look of the piece.

I plan to put another straight border on the sides, once I get all the diamonds and triangles attached.

More 26 Projects

I am making progress. It’s slow, but I am making progress.

Finished 2018 Quilt Projects

The list is finally getting to the point where I feel like it matches what I am feeling. Five quilts is not shabby for 5 months.

Finished 2018 Non-Quilt Projects

Doing Good

In Process
The ‘In Process’ is used to denote projects on which I am actively working or pretending to stitch. I try not to put away projects, because that will ensure I never work on them

  • Aqua-Red Sampler –This is on the design wall and I am contemplating the last block.
  • Pies and Points from 2016 Victoria Findlay Wolfe class. Julie and I had a playdate towards the beginning of April. I brought this piece with me so I could cut more elements (Julie has a Sizzix). I am more excited about this piece now. I thought I had done more, but I couldn’t find more than 2.5 sewn together pieces.
  • English Paper Piecing Project– half hexies – I have added about five stars. I also found some grey (did I buy it for this project or on spec?) that will be perfect for the border. Remember last time when I said I couldn’t find the diamond papers? I gave up and bought more. I haven’t actuallly made a border yet, but I have all of the supplies. I bought a template to go with the diamond papers. Joann at Paper Pieces was very helpful.
  • Tool Tote – In process!

Still WIPs
I still have WIPs. Who doesn’t, after all? A project in the ‘UFO’ category means I am stalled. A nicer way of saying UFO is a WIP. The list is a lot shorter and the projects are newer, for the most part.

  1. City Samplerblocks all made. The long term goal is to sash the blocks and put the top together. In the meantime, due to some seam allowance issues, some of the blocks are smaller than others, so I will have to adjust them in some way – either ripping and resewing, adding a piece or two to the block, or with sashing. This is my sticking point. I need to finish measuring all of the blocks before I can move on that is just a tedious task. Once I know what I am facing for each block, I can probably move forward. I am not looking forward to it, thus no new progress.
  2. FOTY 2017 – pieces cut. Need to layout and start piecing. No new progress.
  3. Handbag Sampler – this is a project about which I had forgotten. The blocks were teaching samples when I taught a sampler class the time before I started writing the quilt class sampler tutorials. I found one block recently, but otherwise I actually don’t know exactly where the blocks are hiding. I have an idea and will crawl up in the far reaches of my fabric closet soon and see if I can find them. I haven’t even found a picture of all the blocks.
  4. Lobster – I still have more stitching to do and then I need to quilt it.
  5. Pointillist Palette #4: Fourth is a series of 6 quilts; needs tiny square patches sewn together. No progress.
  6. Self Portrait: started in 2006 at a class at Quilting Adventures in Richmond, Virginia. I am still stalled on this again. As my oldest (I am pretty sure) UFO, I put it on my blog and out into the Twitterverse and Diane suggested that I not consider this as a self portrait. I think that strategy is a great idea. I am now trying to think of a new persona for her.
  7. Serendipity Lady Quilt: no new progress.
  8. Under the Sea: class project; like the design and am happier with the colors. I have a new idea for it, which is to make a pillow and gift it to a friend.
  9. Black and Red quilt – This came about because of two other projects. I made a whole bunch of bias tape as part of my failed attempt at doing the Mighty Lucky Club a few years ago. Another part of the inspiration came from my class with Tina of Little Blue Cottage fame. This was going to be for a nephew, but I think it will be for one of my SILs and BILs. I have rectangles cut and some bias tape ready. My next step is to sew the bias tape to the rectangles like pickup sticks. I don’t have any photos of this, so you’ll have to trust me.

Small Projects in Process

Most of my progress involves thinking or just cutting.

  • All Rolled Up Tote – part of Crafty Gemini Organizer Club, so on my list, but I haven’t actually started
  • White on black dots cell phone wallet
  • Solid black cell phone wallet
  • Chubby Charmer with Good Fortune charm pack – gift
  • 4-Zip Organizer – part of Crafty Gemini Organizer Club, so on my list, but I haven’t actually started
  • Ultimate Project Organizer – another project from the Crafty Gemini Organizer Club, also on my list, but not yet started

Ready for Quilting

  • BAMaQG Color Round Robin– I didn’t think I would do anything with this project soon. I am on a mission to clear off this UFO list. One weekend, I just blew through the back and binding. This will go to Colleen soon.
  • Octagon 9 Patch: I finished the top on May 5, the back and binding on May 6. This piece is finally ready to be quilted.
  • Stepping Stones #2 – This is ready to be quilted and I am happy. Finally!

In Quilting Process

  • BAMaQG IRR –The sandwich has been basted. I machine quilted a couple of lines to stabilize it. I am making slow progress on hand quilting it using Big Stitch. I
  • Thanksgiving tablemat – I have the correct feet and just need to get busy.
  • Theoretically, the Tarts Come to Tea is in the quilting process, though I haven’t worked on it in a while. See above.

Binding

  • nothing at the moment

Hunting and Gathering

  • 30 Something: I continue to cutting 1.5 inch squares. I am pretty sure I have the 800 I need, but I am not ready to sew them together yet, so whenever I have a chance to cut more I cut more. It will give me choice when the time comes. I’ll have to think up a new name for this quilt, too. My next step is to figure out if I need to cut other sizes of squares and switch from cutting 1.5 inch squares to cutting the new size.
  • Blue Gradation Quilt: cutting 2.5 inch x 4.5 inch blue rectangles. It has to end sometime. I wasn’t sure I was ready to put this together, but I think I am. I might do a couple of gradation quilts in a row just to get the practice.
  • Blue Lemonade: cutting blue, green, purple 2 inch squares. I used a lot of these squares for En Provence, so I am slowly cutting more.
  • FOTY 2018: I have started cutting 2.5 inch squares for the 2018 version.
  • Pink Gradation Quilt: cutting 2.5 inch x 4.5 inch pink rectangles
  • Spin Wheel: really not started, but supplies gathered. I might have to cut some more background fabrics. I probably have enough fabrics and just need to decide to start.
  • Windmill quilt: Still hunting and gathering. I am supposed to be cutting a variety of greys for the background, which required the purchase of a new template. I should be able to get going again

Other

  • Stepping Stones #3 using the Macaron pre-cuts from Hoffman. I have all the fabric in pre-cuts and am just waiting for space (and desire) in my schedule.

I bought some fabric, so I am down on net usage. Still gross usage is just over 113 yards. My net calculation isn’t working, though I think I must be at 50 yards net now. I am pleased, but I want to confirm my guess. If I could make it to 100 yards NET used by the end of the year, I would be ecstatic. It is good to have goals!

What’s on your list?

Tool Tote Finally

I have been thinking about the Tool Tote a lot lately. Since I finished the Stepping Stones n.2 last week, I thought it was time to work on a bag. I have a lot of bags on my project list and never enough time.

As you may recall, I bought the pattern at QuiltCon from Elk Horn Quilts (great shop, BTW). I took some time several months ago to cut a few pieces at a Sew Day, but hadn’t made any other progress since. It was time to move, so I took out all the pieces and started cutting.

Quilts Illustrated Tool Tote chits
Quilts Illustrated Tool Tote chits

OMG! The Quilts Illustrated pattern was fantastic. You have probably seen the post-it notes I attach to the pieces I cut for bags. This Quilts Illustrated pattern had a sheet of bits of pattern chits included. they were already made!!

These made life so much easier. I took the sheet, cut off the chits as I cut the pieces and when there were no more chits there was no more cutting. I didn’t feel frustrated and exhausted. It was awesome.

Thoughts on Aqua-Red Sampler

Aqua-Red Sampler
Aqua-Red Sampler

As I mentioned a couple of days ago, I have the Aqua-Red Sampler on my design wall and I am trying to figure out what block to make as my last block.

Tea Basket block
Tea Basket block

I was thinking of the Nosegay. I have a great version for the Handbag Sampler, so it isn’t pressing that I make another one. Still, it’s a good block. Then I remembered the Tea Basket block. It isn’t very popular. In fact I don’t know if I have ever seen a quilt that included that block. It is in Jinny Beyer’s The Quilter’s Album of Patchwork Patterns, so I was able to find it. I also found it in BlockBase and made some adjustments so the BlockBase version looked more like Jinny Beyer’s version. I also added some color to get an idea of how it would look. Looking at it now, I think it is more of a contender than I thought.

Finished: Stepping Stones n.2 Top

Stepping Stones Top
Stepping Stones Top

Yes, I worked really hard over the weekend and finished the top!

I also finished the back and binding, so the piece is ready to go to Colleen. Yay!

I started playing around with colors in 2012, so this quilt has been hanging around for longer than I thought. Those first tests were a lot different than what this quilt turned out to be. I am pretty pleased with the colors, though the darker turquoises do stand out. At least they are evenly spaced.

I have another group of fabrics destined for this pattern. Regardless of whether I actually use those fabrics for n.3 remains to be seen, but I don’t think I am quite done with this pattern yet. I’ll need a different border. This one is fine, but not for a second quilt.

As You Sew, So Shall You Rip

I realized that I don’t talk much about ripping out stitching. I do it all the time and this week was no exception.

Stepping Stones n.2 - 1 seam left
Stepping Stones n.2 – 1 seam left

I have been eager to finish the Stepping Stones n.2 top as it has been on my design wall for too long. In my rush, I put a block together wrong and then put it in the quilt. With one seam to go to finish the top, I had to rip out a bunch of seams. Yes, I had to. I looked at the quilt for a long time time, trying to decide if I could live with the mistake. I didn’t want to rip when I was so close to finishing, but I just couldn’t live with the problem.

Stepping Stones n.2 - 1 seam left + error
Stepping Stones n.2 – 1 seam left + error

The look is almost right, but if the viewer looks hard, there is a disruption in the pattern. Also, all of a sudden two like fabrics were placed together, which I really worked hard to avoid all through the piecing process.

I am sure you can’t avoid the big circle, but refer back to the photo above to see the problem. Look down and to the left one row to the see the duplicate fabrics (not circled.

Stepping Stones n.2 - lower right hand corner - ripped
Stepping Stones n.2 – lower right hand corner – ripped

Yep. I ripped. I thought I would just take out one row from one block and sew it back in. I ended up taking part a good portion of the lower right hand corner. The photo with the arrow is before I ripped out some other pieces.

I am in the process of sewing the bottom back together and finishing the top.

Stepping Stones n.2 Painfully Slow Progress

Christa Watson has a new pattern out called Stepping Stones. It looks like a reimagined Rail Fence to me, but who am I to say? I had to stop contemplating the names of blocks, however and get back to sewing.

Stepping Stones Border Block - Left Side
Stepping Stones Border Block – Left Side

I try to make a CrockPot meal for Mondays so that we can come home, eat and I can go to Craft Night in a timely manner. Craft Night was at my house on Monday and the meal was over and done before I even needed to prepare the tea and all. I had about half an hour of time, so I raced up to my workroom and sewed! I didn’t have a lot of time over the weekend to sew, so this was a good way to scratch that itch for sewing.

Stepping Stones Border Block - Right Side
Stepping Stones Border Block- Right Side

I wasn’t able to finish a lot, but every little bit helps. I had cut some fabric, so I could work on a couple of border blocks, which I did. These blocks will allow me to put together another row of the top.

The green and blue HSTs indicate the middle of the quilt and prove I am halfway finished with the top. I know you believe me, but sometimes I need to prove to myself I am making progress as slow as that progress might be.

Aside from cutting more pieces, which I have mentioned, I have to make a few more HSTs. I can’t actually see one corner of the quilt, because there is some stuff piled in front of it ( 🙁 , I know). Once I sew the latest row to the top, I’ll be able to pull the quilt up and really work on the bottom.

Progress might be painfully slow, but I am making progress. It would be really great to finish this top before July 7, but we will see.

Stepping Stones n.2 Half

Stepping Stones n.2 - top half
Stepping Stones n.2 – top half

I made really good progress over the weekend. I had only a few seams to sew in order to finish half of the quilt. The quilt is starting to look like something!

You might remember that I finished the first quarter not that long ago and kind of got on a roll.

I have had to cut a lot of blues and greens for the border, so that is taking time, but at least I can do a few at a time in between everything else.

Looking at this half makes me think that I might have to work on another one of these. I would like to see the framework of the red diamonds more filled in. On the other hand, if I used more red, would the Sawtooth Stars (check the middle, right under the red square) show up? Perhaps fabric with less contrast? Red and pink or orange and yellow? I’ll have to play around.

I also need to work on the border of a new version. This border is ok, but not great. Not sure why, but it isn’t doing much for me.

A Few More Hexie Stars

Half Hexies - May 2018
Half Hexies – May 2018

I have been working on the half hexie stars a tiny amount. They take a long time, as I have said.

I finally was able to cut some more backgrounds, so I have been focusing on making background stars. I’ll have to see when I can add more stars to the larger piece. Making the individual stars is fairly easy, though not completely mindless. I do have to really pay attention when I am adding stars to the larger piece.

Stepping Stones n.2 – Top Quarter

Stepping Stones n.2 - top quarter
Stepping Stones n.2 – top quarter

I wouldn’t normally put a quilt together like this (you know I like chunking!), but it is too long to fit completely on my large design wall. I put the top quarter (ish??) together and and then flung it over the top so only the bottom couple of rows are showing. That allowed me to move everything up and work more on the middle. I hope also, to work on the bottom, but I will probably have to move it up again.

I am always amazed at how good quilt tops look sewing together. I really like the top part of this quilt and it took me so long to get to this point. Yes, I have a lot more cutting and a lot more sewing, but I am thrilled, finally, to be making some progress!

26 Projects: Continuing to Progress

I have held off starting any new quilt projects, though I sorely want to. Some of the projects on my dream list are calling my name LOUDLY.

Finished 2018 Quilt Projects

The list is finally getting to the point where I feel like it matches what I am feeling. Five quilts is not shabby for 5 months.

Finished 2018 Non-Quilt Projects

Doing Good

In Process
The ‘In Process’ is used to denote projects on which I am actively working or pretending to stitch. I try not to put away projects, because that will ensure I never work on them

  • Pies and Points from 2016 Victoria Findlay Wolfe class. Julie and I had a playdate towards the beginning of April. I brought this piece with me so I could cut more elements (Julie has a Sizzix). I am more excited about this piece now. I thought I had done more, but I couldn’t find more than 2.5 sewn together pieces.
  • English Paper Piecing Project– half hexies – I have added about five stars. I also found some grey (did I buy it for this project or on spec?) that will be perfect for the border. Remember last time when I said I couldn’t find the diamond papers? I gave up and bought more. I haven’t actuallly made a border yet, but I have all of the supplies. I bought a template to go with the diamond papers. Joann at Paper Pieces was very helpful.
  • Stepping Stones #2 – This piece is back on the design wall, I made a few blocks last weekend. I need to cut more patches and continue to sew more border blocks.

Still WIPs
I still have WIPs. Who doesn’t, after all? A project in the ‘UFO’ category means I am stalled. A nicer way of saying UFO is a WIP. The list is a lot shorter and the projects are newer, for the most part.

  1. Aqua-Red Sampler – I need to lay the blocks out and put the piece together. No new progress, but it is coming up on the list.
  2. BAMaQG Color Round Robin – no progress. I decided quilting it myself was stupid and it would never get done with the other quilting projects I have. I will make a back and send it off to Colleen. This will be a gift for the grandchild of a friend.
  3. City Samplerblocks all made. The long term goal is to sash the blocks and put the top together. In the meantime, due to some seam allowance issues, some of the blocks are smaller than others, so I will have to adjust them in some way – either ripping and resewing, adding a piece or two to the block, or with sashing. This is my sticking point. I need to finish measuring all of the blocks before I can move on that is just a tedious task. Once I know what I am facing for each block, I can probably move forward. I am not looking forward to it, thus no new progress.
  4. FOTY 2017 – pieces cut. Need to layout and start piecing. No new progress.
  5. Handbag Sampler – this is a project about which I had forgotten. The blocks were teaching samples when I taught a sampler class the time before I started writing the quilt class sampler tutorials. I found one block recently, but otherwise I actually don’t know exactly where the blocks are hiding. I have an idea and will crawl up in the far reaches of my fabric closet soon and see if I can find them. I haven’t even found a picture of all the blocks.
  6. Lobster – I still have more stitching to do and then I need to quilt it.
  7. Pointillist Palette #4: Fourth is a series of 6 quilts; needs tiny square patches sewn together. No progress.
  8. Self Portrait: started in 2006 at a class at Quilting Adventures in Richmond, Virginia. I am still stalled on this again. As my oldest (I am pretty sure) UFO, I put it on my blog and out into the Twitterverse and Diane suggested that I not consider this as a self portrait. I think that strategy is a great idea. I am now trying to think of a new persona for her.
  9. Serendipity Lady Quilt: no new progress.
  10. Under the Sea: class project; like the design and am happier with the colors. I have a new idea for it, which is to make a pillow and gift it to a friend.
  11. Black and Red quilt – This came about because of two other projects. I made a whole bunch of bias tape as part of my failed attempt at doing the Mighty Lucky Club a few years ago. Another part of the inspiration came from my class with Tina of Little Blue Cottage fame. This was going to be for a nephew, but I think it will be for one of my SILs and BILs. I have rectangles cut and some bias tape ready. My next step is to sew the bias tape to the rectangles like pickup sticks. I don’t have any photos of this, so you’ll have to trust me.

Small Projects in Process

Most of my progress involves thinking or just cutting.

  • All Rolled Up Tote – part of Crafty Gemini Organizer Club, so on my list, but I haven’t actually started
  • White on black dots cell phone wallet
  • Solid black cell phone wallet
  • Chubby Charmer with Good Fortune charm pack – gift
  • 4-Zip Organizer – part of Crafty Gemini Organizer Club, so on my list, but I haven’t actually started
  • Tool Tote – I bought the pattern at QuiltCon and started cutting it out at Sew Day in March. I found some more of the fabrics I want to use
  • Ultimate Project Organizer – another project from the Crafty Gemini Organizer Club, also on my list, but not yet started

Ready for Quilting

  • Octagon 9 Patch: I finished the top on May 5, the back and binding on May 6. This piece is finally ready to be quilted.

In Quilting Process

  • BAMaQG IRR –The sandwich has been basted. I machine quilted a couple of lines to stabilize it. I am making slow progress on hand quilting it using Big Stitch. I
  • Thanksgiving tablemat – I have the correct feet and just need to get busy.
  • Theoretically, the Tarts Come to Tea is in the quilting process, though I haven’t worked on it in a while. See above.

Binding

  • nothing at the moment

Hunting and Gathering

  • 30 Something: I continue to cutting 1.5 inch squares. I am pretty sure I have the 800 I need, but I am not ready to sew them together yet, so whenever I have a chance to cut more I cut more. It will give me choice when the time comes. I’ll have to think up a new name for this quilt, too. My next step is to figure out if I need to cut other sizes of squares and switch from cutting 1.5 inch squares to cutting the new size.
  • Blue Gradation Quilt: cutting 2.5 inch x 4.5 inch blue rectangles. It has to end sometime. I wasn’t sure I was ready to put this together, but I think I am. I might do a couple of gradation quilts in a row just to get the practice.
  • Blue Lemonade: cutting blue, green, purple 2 inch squares. I used a lot of these squares for En Provence, so I am slowly cutting more.
  • FOTY 2018: I have started cutting 2.5 inch squares for the 2018 version.
  • Pink Gradation Quilt: cutting 2.5 inch x 4.5 inch pink rectangles
  • Spin Wheel: really not started, but supplies gathered. I might have to cut some more background fabrics. I probably have enough fabrics and just need to decide to start.
  • Windmill quilt: Still hunting and gathering. I am supposed to be cutting a variety of greys for the background, which required the purchase of a new template. I should be able to get going again

Other

  • Stepping Stones #3 using the Macaron pre-cuts from Hoffman. I have all the fabric in pre-cuts and am just waiting for space (and desire) in my schedule.

I bought some fabric, so I am down on net usage. Still gross usage is just over 101 yards (46 net; yes I have bought about 50 yards worth of fabric this year!). I am pleased, but I want to hit 50 yards net as soon as possible. If I could make it to 100 yards NET used by the end of the year, I would be ecstatic. It is good to have goals!

What’s on your list?

Pointillist Palette n.4 Revisited

Every month or so I have been going on and one about various projects on which I need to work. It occurred to me that some of the projects are so old that I should haul them out and take a new photo. I sighed hugely at the work involved in that little project, because some of them are well stored. I do think it is a good idea not just for you, but for me as well. I started with something accessible. The last time I looked at these pieces and parts was in 2014.

Pointillist Palette in process
Pointillist Palette in process

The pieces and blocks for Pointillist Palette quilt n.4 (??) are in my sewing table, so I was able to pull them out (and shake them off a bit) fairly easily.

The reason I think this is a good exercise is that I can see what I have. As you can see I have 5 blocks already made and many squares cut.  I am sure I need at least twice as many blocks, but this is a good reminder of what I have.

Also, looking at the pieces and parts reminds me I need to look at what my original idea was for this quilt. Was it a Night theme or did I already do that.

See the other Pointillist Palette quilts in the Gallery.

HRTs in Process

HRTs in May
HRTs in May

A lot of what I am doing at the moment is prep. Cutting fabric that I can’t sew together now, but will do so later. Pressing fabric that will be cut whose small pieces will eventually be sewn back into a large piece of something. This is the sad nature of Hunting & Gathering.

As I mentioned the other day, I have been cutting clues for more Spiky 16 patch blocks. I have quite a number of 16 patches waiting to be spiked, so there is a never ending need. For some reason that I can’t remember right now, I couldn’t actually get fabric under the machine, but I could cut and I cut a lot.

I have to say and I am really liking the Split Recs ruler by Studio 180 Designs. I can cut gazillions of these pieces without thinking twice. Watch the video!

Big Stitch Update

BAMaQG IRR May 2018
BAMaQG IRR May 2018

I made some progress on the BAMaQG IRR at Craft Night the other night. The image shows the whole piece. Obviously, you can’t see the hand stitching, but you can get an overall view of the piece.

I am not using a pattern or marking much when I Big Stitch. I am following the stitching lines and eyeballing where my stitches go. They are mostly straight lines, a quarter inch from seams.

I plan to use different threads, especially the Sue Spargo threads I have been buying, but at the moment I am using an Aurifil embroidery thread.

BAMaQG IRR May 2018 detail
BAMaQG IRR May 2018 detail

The Flying Geese made some arrow type designs.

You can see, especially if you click on the image to make it larger, that I am doing multiple rows of outline stitching. I don’t want the piece to be stiff, so I probably won’t fill in the whole arrow, but I might do a few more lines. I’ll have to see.

BAMaQG IRR May 2018 back detail
BAMaQG IRR May 2018 back detail

I am pretty pleased with the way the back looks as well. Unlike 10 stitches to the inch hand quilting, the stitches on the back of a Big Stitched quilt are supposed to be smaller, according to Sarah Fielke. Mine are smaller and even, which is what I have been working to improve.

BAMaQG IRR May 2018 detail
BAMaQG IRR May 2018 detail

If I were to put stitches in all the solid areas so there was no open space, the look would be somewhat like one section I already did. The section between the green dots and blue flowers has about 4 lines of stitching that covers the whole area.