Thursday, March 23, 2017

Peace, Love, Grinchmas Quilt

The BOM facilitator quit at month #10 for this Mystery. I am not sure if she had personal issues or was frustrated with the layout alternatives some participants posted or what. She just issued the last block, gave a brief summary of possible endings and was gone!

There were options for making more blocks that added to the two different ones already completed. I opted to lay them out as an A+B design and call it done. It comes out to a nice size for a personal lap quilt. Whatever plan she had for borders was not released, so fabric got set aside for it now waits for another project.

I used a beige with small holly on it for the first 3" border, and a flange in red as a separator between the first and second border which measures 4", and is the aqua Grinch fabric. Both colors are seen in the center of the quilt and coordinate wonderfully. I plan to look for an aqua tone on tone for the back to give one side a less busy look. It goes into the bin of other UFO projects waiting for my next purchase. I would like to finish three quilts before the holidays to get them shipped as gifts this year.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Neighborhood Top

Phew...this is a big quilt for those I usually make. It took a lot to trim to size and add extensions to a couple of ends.

Unfortunately, it goes back to being a UFO for now. Seams need checking and loose threads need to be clipped. Just not today. Sometimes when a quilt has endless details to it, I like to set it aside and work on other projects. I feel that way now.

And because it is such a dark day outside, the light doesn't show well into the room for a clear photo. However, the top is done. I plan to use the same green as binding and it is enough. As I worked on it, I thought about doing a back by joining 10" squares I have cut and are sitting in my stash. I might pull them out and see what could happen. There are so many random lines in it too that I believe machine quilting with a diagonal stitch would work on both sides.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Happy Spring!

I am posting this photo taken on a Sunday trip to San Juan Capistrano. The flower crown came to me as part of a SwapBot exchange. Many people commented on it as I walked the grounds. It was fun to wear and I plan to use it when I go out into town this Summer. I haven't had a photo for some years, so seeing wrinkles came as a shock. And its an 'Oh Well' sort of thing.

Row Houses

Measuring, adding background, pressing and measuring again. What I wanted to do was to measure from the longest row that was joined, which turned out to be about 61" and I am going with that first.

At this point, its all about the rows and not the order they go in. At least for now. This one is actually Row #3. It is my hope that they will go together without too much more juggling. It IS easy to rip a house block and change it. If the rows need more to make them all measure up, it is easy to add to one end. As I worked on them today, they ended up really close.

The first row has a red house, barn and silo. The big thing, yet again, with my quilts is that they are made from scraps in my closet. It gets to be busy so what will save it, even though it is also scrappy, is the blue sky background. Also the green sashing from one piece of fabric will help. It has a soft batik look to it.

The second row got that bigger house towards the middle, so I am strongly leaning toward switching the gray-castle-like one to fit at the other end. The top two shown here have threads clipped, are measured the same and pressed. This one needs all that work, and the last row which lays on third is yet to measure out correctly. 

The last row has a tent, which replaced a boat block on the original pattern. The flaps open and once the sashing is on, I will find a way to secure one of the flaps open.  It is a mighty busy quilt. Mighty busy. But my guess is that it will work very nicely. My next step is cutting the green for the sashing and side borders. Its going to be a rather large quilt with the house rows measuring 60" without a border, so I am not sure a second one will go on it. Things change, and all I can do is keep going on it.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Neighborhood Quilt

I set this BOM quilt away because the green fabric I had for sashing was being used underneath my Winter Village, which is down now & put away. Fabric is washed and ready to cut. 

Typical of the UFO's I work on, there is so much more to doing them when I return to the project. I left it thinking all I had to do was add sashing. Hah! Threads need clipping, and each row needs to measure up the same width. So I started doing that part, which could take me a couple of days.

I did finish hand sewing the binding on the camping towel tote while I was on the train yesterday. I need to buy strapping for it when I shop on the weekend.

I did not realize how much work meeting my commitment to work on and finish the UFO's in my closet would be. I mean it is really work. It starts with regenerating passion about the project. Luckily with the Neighborhood quilt, it will go to my youngest Great-Neice and is part of the quilts I plan to send to all of them (3 grrrls and a boy). There is no hurry as they were not planned for this year as gifts. And that is part of the downside of these projects. 

For such a long time, I pushed myself to complete them in order to ship them off as gifts. Now they are allowed to linger.

My gardens call for attention these days. Most of the work is weeding and pruning back winter kill on the larger plants. Its quite easy to fill the trash bin each week. I need to move some of the mulch from one section to another. It is best not to have bare ground and so the mulch will come from areas where the plants, like mint, have taken off already.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Gratitude Mystery BOM

Once again, this Mystery quilt is done without my knowing  an outcome. I don't know where the blocks will lay next to each other, nor do I know if I am selecting the correct colors.

The more I work on it, the more I think I want to call it Gratitude. After talking with my friend about these latest two Mysteries, she 'pre- selected' the other one called Seasons for her husband. There are two more months to finish up, plus borders for that one.  

She tells the story about how he gets up every day, makes himself an early breakfast with coffee, and then cuddles up on the love seat until it is time to go to work. Every day. He takes his jacket and covers up with it. Before she told me the story, I was leaning toward giving him Seasons and now believe it is his. He is a sweet man and is good to her.

Then I cut out, pinned, pieced, and quilted the three parts of the next tote; the body and 2 sides. Its ready for joining and then the binding will go on for hand stitching. I am planning a train ride down to Capistrano on Sunday so having hand work is perfect for 3-4 hours there and back again.

Friday, March 17, 2017

In Between Times

There is a long-standing tradition about the 'tween' times as holding magick; those times just before sunrise or sunset, just as the ocean touches the sand; or when you hold your breath and exhale; or that moment between being alone and falling in love. It is that space that separates one moment from another, one day from the next. We all have our own magickal moments that signal life and death, sadness and joy.

Well so it is with quilting projects.

Especially now that I have felt great joy in finishing one UFO and then looking at the list on my blog sidebar only to discover that there are others, more, next.

And so, the next thing I did in the studio was to bring out my warmer-weather clothes which are also kept in one of the closets, go through my kitchen towels converting some to rags, and exchanging Winter towels for Spring/Summer, and then to put away my Winter Village. The Spring Village is ready to go up, yet for another day. It was a still day and it was a good day.