Monday, December 13, 2010

GFG - Light in the tunnel?

Last week was a good week for hand piecing.  I completed 5 GFG blocks.  I now have only 17 to go before I have all the Grandmother's Flower blocks from the jelly roll pieced.  Then I have to figure out how to put it together.  I'm wondering if I should buy another fabric and use it between the flowers and to do a side boarder.  No idea how much I would need.  I guess I'll wait until I get the blocks done first. 

Not doing any hand work today.  Been doing a lot of knitting lately - socks and mittens for winter and last night I really overdid it watching Christmas specials.  My hands are extremely sore and the knuckles swollen and painful from knitting to much.  I hate having arthritis in my hands.  It doesn't usually bother me as I usually know enough to quit before my hands start hurting.  I finished the second mitt of a pair for my Dad last night and one and a half mittens for my son.  His second mitten will have to wait until the swelling goes down.

I am glad I don't have karate this week.  There's no way I could make a tight fist with my hands like this.  Typing is difficult enough.

I'm going to baste and start machine quilting a holiday table runner today.  Hopefully, I'll be able to find it before the weekend.

Thursday, November 4, 2010


I have to stop procrastinating soon - my applique class starts on Saturday, and while I have gathered and washed my fabrics and scraps (layer cake), I have yet to iron them.  I hate ironing with a passion and have been finding other things to do and put off the ironing part.  It has to be done today or tomorrow as Saturday morning is going to be busy before I have to head in for class.  Class starts at 930.  I'll have to get my lunch bento ready before heading in as well.

Part of the thing is I have this thing about forgetting to unplug the iron.  I was going to do it yesterday afternoon, but had a martial arts class last night and was afraid I'd forget to unplug the iron - I haven't yet, but I don't know the number of times I've gotten partway down the road and had to turn around to check and make certain I've unplugged the iron.  It's a weird almost-phobia thing, especially as last Christmas my son bought me an auto-shutoff iron.  I guess I worry in case the cats get near it, although they are not allowed in the sewing room - and haven't been since I nearly lost my female this February because she had ingested some sort of string.  I don't think it came from the sewing room, but I am not taking the chance anymore.  Before they were only allowed in the room if I was there to watch them anyways, but better safe than sorry.

And today, I'm surfing the net and avoiding the ironing.  I should just go and get it done!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Project nearing completion

I've got a small quilt nearing completion.  It's made from 5 fat quarters and done up in a pattern from the Quiltmaker Addicted to Scraps column.  One was a variation of a whirl-a-gig, so I played with my FQ and put together a little quilt.  It's only about 25 X 35. I've got the quilting done and the binding machine-sewed on one side.  I found enough 21/2" strips in the scrap bin of a fed that went well enough with the border, so I did a single-fold binding.  I just have the hand-stitiching to complete.

The 9 patch is coming along slowly.  I haven't decided how to finish the inside of the quilt. I drafted (and have since misplaced a Plan).  I have to finish the outside row of blocks before I start the interior so I have tiem to redraft the plan or come up with something new.

And I start a new project next week.  I am taking an applique class on Saturdays in November.  I have my class kit almost put together.  I am using a layer cake for the scraps and I have complimentary fabrics for sashing, inner border and binding - I just hope I have enough.  These fabrics were planned for a different quilt.  I have to finish washing the fabrics and get them ironed and a few things to locate for the kit.  It will be good to actually get some learning from a teacher.  My applique is mostly self-taught so I can use all the instruction I can get.  I still struggle with sharp points, so I am hoping to learn how to conquer them at this class.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Long time - no Post again

Life has been busy up until recently.  Having been laid off, I am finding more time for quilting.  I have basted the scrappy 9-patch and have started quilting it (UFO).  And created a new UFO - I made up an autumn colours rail fence quilt.  That one will be an easy quilt when I get around to it.  I'll just quit the rails and leaves in the border.

Cooking has taken some time away from quilting as I have been making bento lunches.  It's good to have healthier food and my son is actually eating his lunches, so I will try to balance the time. 

I'm also spending hours every day on the job search.  It took me 4 hours to finish an application yesterday.  I struggle with the wording on the letters - I am not good at it at all.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Magic Tile

The quilting on the magic tile is now done.  I hit panic mode, realizing the fair is coming up and I wanted to enter it.  I am just about halfway around the binding.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Progressing away

I'm up to 47 completed GFG blocks - over the halfway mark now. 

I'm also halfway around the border of my Magic Tile quilt.  Figure it will take me a couple more weeks to finish the quilting.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Flower Baskets

I finished the flower basket swap top today.  It will go in the 'to be quilted' pile.  There are 5 other quilts ahead of it in the pile.

I pulled my double delight off the shelf - it's in need of a border.  I have the fabric pulled and just need to get to it, but it's just way too hot to be messing around with a large quilt top, so I decided to play with my fabric a bit.  I have a FQ set of bright orange, yellow, green and blue and red.  I am using the colours (except the red) to make sisters blocks as in the Quiltmaker Addicted to Scraps article this month.  The end result will be a table runner.  I'll use the red as a border as the edges of the blocks are on the bias and I'll really want to stabilize them before quilting.  If I have enough of the red, I'll use it for the binding as well, otherwise I'll have to hunt for a red for the binding.  I rather hope I have enough and don't have to go hunting.

Last night I finished the "And Pigs Will Fly" rag quilt.  It's going through the washing process now.  It's a fundraiser quilt - it's got flying pigs on one of the fabrics - a joke on my mom's behalf as I told her I'd run one of the fundraisers for the place she works at again When Pigs Fly.  The rude people I had to deal with after giving up a day of my long weekend last summer was the final straw.  I will contribute to the fundraiser, but I am not actually going to be there and running it.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Poking along

Thanks to landry night, I have the first short side of the Magic Tile quilted.  Then I accidentally skinned my thumb (Ow), so not much hand quilting going on.

I have finished another row of the flower basket quilt.  One more row to assemble and attach, plus borders and that top will be done.

I finished yet another GFG - I am now up to 33 complete.  Almost halfway.

And I've spent a good deal of time playing in EQ7.  I am tring to design an Ocean Waves quilt in EQ.  The block doesn't exist in the software, whcih is very strange.  I managed to draft a block and set it into a quilt, but printing out the instructions I have run into soemthing strange.  I coloured the quilt in 3 colours for simplicity, as I am planning on doing this one scrappy, but the colour/fabric requirement has tossed in a fourth colour and I don't know where it has come from!

Friday, July 2, 2010

Magic Tile Progress

Being a cool day and also a holiday, I finally started quilting the border for my Magic Tile quilt.  the quiltin gon the border is fairly heavy to match up with the quilting on the body of the quilt.  One of the short sides is almost donw now - I am paying for the marathon quilting session today with very sore hands.

I got EQ7 this week as well.  I have already been playing - scanning in fabrics and designing quilts.  I am trying to resist starting anything new.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Long time, no update...

It's been a while.  Between hot weather making hand quilting a miserable prospect, physiotherapy, work and training for my next (shodan-ho) karate ranking, I've had little time to quilt.

I did finish the tulip pillow, and continue to work on the Magic Tile quilt.  We've had a couple of cooler days (in the 70s instead of the 100s) so I've done a little bit on it in the last week.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Magic Tile Progress

i am making progress on the Magic Tile quilt.  I am trying to spend an hour every day on it.  I have 75% of the body quilted.  Determining the quilting pattern for this one was a struggle.  I've been struggling with the question of how I am going to quilt the border so that the quilting is as dense as the body (echo quilting patches every half inch) and may have figured out a plan.

Friday, April 9, 2010


The applique tulip pillow is finished.  I just need to launder it and get a picture.  The black fabric really shows the cat hair all over it.

I read the Aloha quilt by Jennifer Chaverini last week.  It has inspired me to do another hawaiian applique.  I think this one I'll do the ulu pattern in read and white.  So much for not starting anything new!  I've also almost finished the first Tisket a Tasket block. 

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Tulip progress and UFO finish

I've made progress on the Tulip pillow. I've finished all of the applique - pictures below are steps in progress. I am on to the quilting of this one.

And I have also finished the Bear's Paw quilt.

Thursday, March 25, 2010


Well, I got two more of the Grandmother's flower garden blocks pieced while watching karate last night. My ankle isn't up to the stances or kicks. So I sat on the sidelines and pieced GFG blocks. I now have 29 blocks pieced.

And I've gotten a few more pieces on the stained glass. 9 more applique pieces to go and the pillow top will be done. I got some black yli handquilting thread from sew-sister's quilt shop mail order (I think I really like this company) so I'm ready to start the quilting as soon as I get the applique done.

Monday, March 22, 2010

National Quilt Day/Weekend Retreat

As Saturday was National Quilt Day I spent as much of the weekend as I could working on quilting. Strictly hand-sewing. I finished two of my grandmother's flower garden blocks (total done is now 27) and worked on the Tulip mandala. I finished the light green and started adding the gold. I put on 4 of the dark gold pieces and have since started the light gold (no picture).
The above picture was once the green was added. The basting stitches on the right are the result of the stained glass frame coming unfused from the black. The picture below is with the first part of the dark yellow pieces.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Tulip Mandala

I've started work on another UFO. It's a tulip mandala stained glass pillow. I am not fond of this particular stained glass technique. It is very fussy, which is probably why the piece became a ufo in the first place. It's kind of appropriate to be working on it now that it is spring time.

I am working in colour blocks now - I'm not certain what I was doing before as I have pieces appliqued that are 3 colours. I've basted the last of the light pink and hope to finish that colour today.

The light green patches are cut out and ready to be basted on. I think I will baste more than one at a time and then have a stretch of stitching. I think I can do eight. Then there are the dark and light gold pieces to do. Doesn't sound like much, but I think it will take a couple of weeks to finish. This one will be finished as a pillow - I don't really use wallhangings.

Almost done the green quilt. It's quilted, bound and labelled - it just needs to be washed and I will call it done done.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010


Quilt labels are the bane of my existence. I usually use T-shirt transfer onto white fabric because you can get a nice clear lable.

Problem is it takes several attempts to get a good transfer. I'm trying to make labels today and I've got a mess - wasted transfer, wasted fabric because the transfer didn't work properly. Now I've got to boot the laptop, print the labels again and try it again.

I'd use permanent marker but it never looks nice on the back of the quile.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Grandmother's Flower Garden

A trip to Toronto this weekend was very productive in the GFG making. I completed 6 GFG blocks on the bus to and from Toronto.

A header down my basement stairs and the subsequent time (4 hours) spent in Emerg, to find out that my ankle is not broken but very badly sprained saw 2 more of the blocks completed.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Hawaiian Finish

I've finished the Hawaiian wall quilt. This is my second UFO finish this year. I am fairly pleased with it - still wish I could get someone to actually teach me hand applique. I'm teaching myself and admit that the points on the leaves aren't as good as they could be.

The pattern is Woodland Lei - I cannot remember the publisher/designer. It's been so long since I started this UFO that I have lost the pattern. It's somewhere in the black hole I call a sewing room.

I'm also posting an image of my first UFO finish this year. This is a giant (22 inches) pillow. The top of the pillowcase is a leftover block from a quilt I made a couple of years ago. I've had the block and borders on it - just needed to quilt and assemble the pillow. It was something that I just never got to.

I unearthed a UFO while looking for my applique needles for doing the binding on the Hawaiian quilt. It's a reverse-applique stained glass piece that I mean to make into yet another pillow. So that's one of the next UFOs to be completed. I still have the green Bear Paw that just needs binding yet.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Hawaiian update

Almost done the border quilting of the Hawaiian quilt. Hopefully I'll get it done and bind it next weekend.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Flower baskets moving forward

Well, I cut the blocks down to 10". They are pretty uniform except for the one where the basket size was screwed up (bigger than the pattern called for). I'm hoping that one isn't going to stick out too badly.

I've got the horizontal sashings nearly sewn together. After I get those done I'll start on the block rows. I have a layout determined and I don't want to lose it - and don't have stickers to mark the blocks, so I'll have to do each row one at a time. Wish I knew what I did with those stickers.

At the laundromat and at the farm yesterday I almost completed another quarter of the white space on the Hawaiian. It is almost half done. One more half and some centre embellishment and then all I have to do is the binding.

I prepared the binding for the Bear's Paw this weekend. Just need to get it stitched on now.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Flower basket frustration

Decided to get the flower basket top together this weekend. Pulled sashing fabrics and had made an additional 12 blocks to finish the quilt.

Before cutting the sashing I decided to check the swap blocks. They were supposed to be squared out at 10 1/2". NOT. I'm going to have to cut all the blocks down to 10 inches. Not a single one of the freaking things would square to 10 1/2'.

I'm seriously annoyed. It would be worse if I'd cut the sashing before checking the blocks.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Found it

I finally found the binding I cut for the Bear Paw. I just need to sew it together and get it on the quilt.

I trimmed the Bear Paw for binding today.

I've got 2 more blocks for my Flower Basket quilt. Need to make a few more - hope I have enough basket. I'm going to discard one of the swap blocks if I can and make 3 more of my block - it will go in the corners of a 4x5 block layout.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Need to get busy....

My name's in the top 30 of the UFO queen list. I need to get busy. I've started stitching the blank areas of the Hawaiian. It's going to take a while.

The Bear's Paw just needs binding. I'll have to find some matching thread this weekend and get the binding on.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Forward momentum

Not much quilting going on here. I have finished the outline of the applique on the hawaiian wall hanging. Now I have to decide how to quilt the wide open spaces. I can't decide if I want to echo quilt the hawaiian applique or put something else in the corners.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Swap blocks

I finished my swap blocks this morning. I need to get them in the mail tomorrow or Friday. I am very pleased to get that task finished.

The last of the inner border has been sewn on the double delight. I am waiting to get the outer border fabric washed to put it on.

The fourth 3D block is done. I need to cut more pieces for that quilt now.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Glutton for Punishment....

I've got approximately 40 UFOs to begin with (counting the two Christmas gifts) - I didn't need another one, but I signed up for a Flower Basket block swap on canadianquiltswappers. The blocks aren't due to the hostess until February 1st, to be returned by February 15th.

I have the fabric washed and ironed and the floral fabric cut. I hope to finish cutting the basket part today. It is a very simple block - 4 pieces to put together - so I hope they will go together quickly. I need to do 14 for the swap, but am doing 16 blocks - that way I can lay my quilt out in a 4 x 4 grid as long as the repeated block doesn't stand out too much. I am thinking of making this a qayg project. We'll see when I get the blocks in and squared up. I am thinking of using a nice green for sashing.

I continue to quilt on the Magic Tile. The green Bear's Paw just needs to be squared up and bound. I haven't gotten to that yet. I hate binding so I am putting it off. I think I am going to grit my teeth and get it done on the weekend. I have to finish the peicing and baste the Hawaiian this weekend so I have something to take with me that's relatively small for when I am working in the city next week.