Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Quilting at last

I didn’t get as much sewing done this past week as I wanted. We had some really nice weather and spent a lot of time outside doing  yard work. Some of it easy, like picking vegetable, some of it arduous. That would be clearing the weed trees and brush from the property lines. When we bought this place it had been allowed to get very overgrown. And what it is overgrown with is an invasive species of shrub called Buckthorn.  Here’s what Ontario Trees and Shrubs webpage has to say about it:
 Notes: Common Buckthorn is a very invasive alien plant, originally from Europe. It can grow up to about 20 feet tall. Please help to slow the spread of this plant by pulling it up whenever you see it. However, please be sure that you're pulling up the right plant, as it can resemble native Dogwoods. The thorns are wicked - watch out for them!
I can attest to the wickedness of the thorns. Tried to grab a pile of branches without my work gloves and got a 2 inch thorn in my finger. Ouch indeed.
After three days of chopping this stuff down, we still have lots of it out there but I was totally worn out. I called a halt and went back to sewing.
bohemian on the wallAnd here it is, Bohemian Rhapsody on the basting wall finally. I thought long and hard over the back. It was really difficult to bring myself to actually cut the Polish fabric I had ordered for this. It was just so lovely. And I didn’t want a plain ordinary back with these spectacular fabrics, it had to stand out. So this is what I came up with. bohemianback
A lot of math when into it. Including adding extra to the side pieces so there is overage for the quilting process.
Perhaps I was patting myself to hard on my back because several hours into the quilting this is what I came across.
bohemianbobo See that big blue triangle…it shouldn’t be a triangle. It should have a floral corner. I put the brakes on and decided to sleep on the decision. Do I try and add the floral piece that is missing? There is only one seam to undo since it an edge piece. And if you look in the big picture you can actually see it. If you follow the vertical centre line of the squares, the bottom right one.
While I think it over, I’m off the walk the yard looking for things that need to be put away from the rain coming today, like the box of potatoes I dug.
And a bonus of the lumberjack work, I actually got to see one of the elusive tree frogs that have been so annoying to listen to all summer. I hope you can see him here on his tree.treefrog ( and no, I didn’t cut his tree down). Now to connect up with Jo and her UFO progress update

Thursday, 7 September 2017

A busy August

is finished and now that all the socializing is over with I can settle down to quilting. That was my thoughts as September started. And it has worked out, mostly.  I quilted a baby panel that has been kicking around in my stash for a long time. No picture as yet, still has to get the binding on.

I also got the Bohemian Rhapsody blocks together. Have had a hard time trying to get a good picture of it, my design wall isn’t big enough for it, my basting wall room had poor lighting. So I thought outside on the clothesline would be perfect to bring out the colours. A little too much wind, but hubby was kind enough to hold it down for me.

2017-09-07 14.13.36 After this, we took off for a trip across the border to pick up fabric from my US mail box.  Some of which was destined to be the backing for this quilt.

2017-09-07 18.59.21

Aren’t they great ? This is some of the Polish fabric that the fabric store half of the Quilted Twins brought back. I was bumbling around trying to think of what to use for a backing when Rachael put these up and the light bulb went off in my head. My niece is part Polish on her mother’s side, since this is a wedding gift for her, Polish fabrics would be perfect.

One of the other packages to pick up was the box of shirts from Jo. 2017-09-07 19.02.09

Isn’t this great, a box just stuffed with goodies. Thanks so much Jo, I’m going to love using these. After so many quilts with my stash of shirts, I was starting to get tired of seeing them. In another attempt to use them up, I started a Spider Web quilt.

Surprisingly these use very little pieces. The longest st2017-09-07 18.57.35rip is only 5’’, so it is going to take a while to work through my pile of shirts.

And the other packages? Well, while I was waiting for Jo’s box, I did order a few more packages of fabric from the Quilted Twins

2017-09-07 19.00.39

With prices so good, I couldn’t resist.

Now to link up with Jo’s UFO Progress

Wednesday, 2 August 2017

A finish, hooray.

Well, finished top. I decided last week that a big factor in not getting any UFOs finished was that none were being worked on.  All my effort was being expended on new projects. So pulled out a stack of blocks that have been sitting neglected and figured out what would pull them together.

2017-07-26 16.51.46What was going to be another Film at Five has turned into a Dancing 25 patch.  Finished is better than perfect being the new motto.

A lot of my week was taking up with cutting and cutting and cutting. It seemed like it would go on forever.  But it didn’t and now I am sewing again. This time two non-Bonnie patterns.

One from Becky at Quilted Twins, called Show Off that I hoped would make a dent in my shirts.  Maybe not a dent but it did make me go all though them looking for 49 different patterns. The biggest part of this is a single piece, so no sewing. But a whole bunch of nine patches yet to make.2017-07-30 18.07.14

The other project is a sew-along of a Mickey Depre pattern, Abacus. This needed lots and lots of HST.

2017-07-29 21.20.25

And certainly looks better from a distance. Up close the neutrals seem too distracting to me.

And another sew-along project got finished. I picked up some orders from Quilted Twins which included a piece that I thought would finish off  Nifty Thrift just right. It did.

2017-08-01 15.36.12

I was really impressed with how I got it to line up so the pattern continues from the sides to the top and bottom.

And that’s it for now. The sun is shining, the garden is growing and I’m off to do some weeding and watering.

But first to link up with Jo and sew what everyone else is doing at Jo’s Country Junction

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

No Progress

No UFO progress to report this week on Jo' link up. I did get the quilt finished last week into the mail.  And thanks to the USPS, the recipient has her gift and sent me a picture of it on her bed.
The expedition to the USPS took most of Friday as I had a bunch of errands to run over the border I had been saving up to do on the same trip.
 Including a trip to my US mail box to pick up my first Quilted Twins orders, and a Quiltville order ( got the new ruler) and a Missouri Star order.
You would think with all this new stuff to play with my weekend would have been spent sewing. You would think wrong. We had an overnight guest and a BBQ to go to Saturday. Then a trip in to  see my in-laws Sunday.
But I eventually did get to unpack my new fabric and tools and play with them. So, since I have no quilts to show, here’s the goodies I’ve acquired.
From the Quilted Twins ( They have become my new addiction. Love their fabric selection and I have downloaded 3 of Becky's quilt patterns and started cutting one.
FQdoggies2017-07-12 11.09.07

Aren’t the doggies great? And they are huge. I don’t know what I’ll do with them but couldn’t resist. Maybe a pillowcase for my dog loving niece.

rulerThis is the new ruler from Bonnie, along with the highlight tabs. Looking forward to using this with the blocks for a new Smokey Mountains quilt I’ve started cutting.

The mailbox over the border hasn’t been the only source of fabric lately. The fabric diet I tried to put myself on has totally collapsed, (just like the food diets). The thrift shops have been calling my name and I have accumulated a bunch of shirts that I am in the process of cutting up. Plus this big piece of what feels like flannel and will make a great backing.

And the sewing group I joined at the seniors centre had a fabric giveaway the last meeting before the summer break. I picked up these pieces then.

While going through the pictures for this post I did find a quilt picture I haven’t shown yet. I took the opportunity of the batting hanging up waiting for Orange Crush to work on my layout for Jo’s Bohemian Rhapsody that I am doing for my niece’s wedding gift. 
It is all taken down and labelled by rows, ready to sew together.

Thursday, 6 July 2017

A Finish

And I even had it finished by Wednesday.... then got busy and forgot to blog. That's been happening a lot lately. So much socializing going on, that I am not on my computer. And that is a good thing. Some of it planned, like having my kids here for July 1st dinner, some of it not, like friends calling and inviting us over for a swim that turns into dinner and goes on until 11 pm.

But back to quilting. Orange Crush is finished and is going in the mail today for a little cousin in New York. It was her Bat Mitzvah two weeks ago and while we couldn't attend due to another commitment the next day in Toronto, my husband wanted to give her a quilt just as we had for the cousin in San Francisco.  So here it is.
The pieced border had me tearing my hair out for a while. Since I had made mine a different size than Bonnie's the numbers she give didn't correspond and I had to do some high level math. And in the end I had to fudge a little. The bottom border doesn't have the four patch corner, instead it has the flying geese block continuing to the end. That was because the side border had to end with a half goose there. No one will know it wasn't supposed to be that way, and I'm too far away to be telling anyone.
And Garden Party is together and waiting to have the edges trimmed up and borders put on.
Amidst all the fun and outdoor time some quilting happened. Now to link up with  Jo's Ufo Update

Thursday, 22 June 2017

No excuse

There really is no excuse for the delay in posting this UFO update. I had a finish, actually it was two and the second was finished on Monday. However,  yesterday slid out of control when my hubby decided I should go along with him on a trip into the city. It was a fun trip but I got next to nothing done here.
Since my last post I have finished binding both quilts.
2017-06-15 11.40.32
2017-06-21 10.57.46 However, I am not that happy with my Pfefferneuse.  There was quite a bit of bleeding of the red/pinks into the neutrals giving some of the blocks a blurry look.
2017-06-20 18.00.17I have re-washed with more colour catchers than I used the first time and am looking into other solutions. But there is enough of a problem that we decided it would not do for the present it was intended. In addition to the colour bleed, some of the string blocks are parting at the seams. I guess my seam allowance wasn't sufficient  for the fabrics and they are fraying apart.
Lots of quilters on Facebook protested when I declared that, saying that all quilts are beautiful and other comments about it being good enough. But the point is; while it might be “good enough” , it is not my best work. And I am certainly not sending off to distant relatives second rate work.
That means I have to pull out another UFO and finish it up. I guess this is where doing all sorts of sew-alongs online is paying off.  I have Bonnie’s Orange Crush or Garden Party to choose from.
I was favouring Orange Crush because I thought it was further along but then discovered there is a pieced border not done. Whereas I think I have enough of the setting blocks done to put together a smaller version of Garden Party. Off to the sewing room to debate with myself.  But first to link up with Jo.
2017-05-30 13.49.162017-03-22 19.17.26

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

UFO update

I held off posting about my progress last week thinking I would have a finish in a day or so. Alas not really a complete finish.
I was quilting Pfefferneuse and while I did get all the quilting done by Thursday, it is still waiting binding and labeling.
2017-06-14 09.40.14 ( the zebra print is a coverlet underneath it, I left off the final border)

The reason I dropped work on this, was to finish a dead-line project. A customer wanted their quilt by the 16th so I had to speed up on it. And I succeeded in getting all the quilting done on it ( Smokey Mountain Stars ).
2017-06-14 09.37.46I am really going to be pained to give up this quilt. The whole time I was quilting it, I fell more in love with it. definitely going to have to do another one.
So that leaves me with two quilts in the queue for binding. Tuesday I spent making bias binding for the both of them. I forget now who I was talking to but someone mentioned that the trouble I was having with my Janome binding tool might be because I wasn’t using bias binding. So I resolved to master making bias binding.
Several mistakes happened including marking my lines the wrong was the first time I did it.2017-06-13 14.59.43
But I persevered and have both cut and ready to go into the tool. So that’s where I’ll be today after I link up with Jo's Ufo Update