Thursday, June 30, 2022

Hiding in the scrap bin

Hi everyone! I don't know about where you are, but we are back to hot and sticky, with thunderstorms every couple of days. It is summer, after all! And hot sticky weather is great for tomatoes and other good things that grow in the garden, so I am looking forward to a good harvest before too long.

Today's theme is: green! If you recall, I cleaned out the green scrap bin and started making a quilt top to use up every bit of the dark greens. Those things have been hanging around for far too long! But not any more, because look:

Yep, they turned into a finished top, just like that! Every bit of this quilt top except the white/gray background is a scrap. The background is a weird text print from Zen Chic by Moda, and I don't know where I got it from. There's quite a bit left, too, so it may turn up as a background in something else. 

Look at those geraniums! This top is all half-square triangles, and I made mine to finish at 4 inches. Every dark green scrap that was big enough got cut up for this quilt. I also threw in some medium greens and a few blues, too, just to fill things out. Really, there's everything in there but the kitchen sink. If it was mostly green and the right size, it went into the quilt.

I saw this block in a magazine I was leafing through at the library. I'm pretty sure it was Quiltmaker, but I didn't take a picture of the magazine itself. Not sure how many blocks were in the magazine quilt, but you can see that I only had enough scraps to make 9 blocks, plus I added the borders. I'm completely okay with this because this quilt still finished at about 60 inches square. This is a great size for something made entirely from one scrap bin!

I was so determined to use up all of the triangle pieces that I had cut that I put the leftovers together and added them to the borders. It works well enough, and it's fabric I didn't have to put back in the scrap bin. Or throw out, you know, because I certainly got a little tired of the dark greens after a bit.

So, there is the quilt that was hiding in that scrap bin! Who knew, right? But there is one more green thing to show off today. Check it out:

Yep, we had the house painted! It looks so, so much better and much more modern. The color is actually called Deep Emerald, though it has a lot of blue in it, not just green. We love it and are so happy with how it turned out. There are a lot of painted brick houses around here, but most of them are white, tan, or gray. The dark green looks pretty sharp, I think. Now we move on to some landscaping for the front and a new color for the front door. The hubs wants red, but I'm thinking a bright aqua. I guess we'll see who gets to the paintbrushes first!
Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend! It's the Fourth of July weekend here in the US, so I hope your picnics and get togethers don't get rained out, and you get to see a lot of fireworks. It's a frustrating time and an imperfect country, but it's still a great country full of great people. That is worthy of celebration, even if a lot of what's happening now isn't. So Happy Fourth, everyone!
Sharing at Finished or not Friday, Brag About Your Beauties, the Patchwork and Quilts linkup at Quilting Patchwork Applique, and Oh Scrap!

Friday, June 24, 2022

Starry, starry birds

 Hi everyone! How are things where you are? We had our house painted this week. It looks amazing, like a brand new place. I'll need to take some "after" pictures, but I am so thrilled with it already. The only downside was that they started super-early, like dawn, so it was quite noisy quite early. But it's done and I am sleeping in tomorrow!

Since I was up, I worked on a bunch of my Positivity blocks, and then I caught up some on the rest of my RSC blocks. First up are the blue stars:
Look how great! Every time I make these I am thrilled with how they turn out. This time I made the triangles oversized and cut them down and the final blocks were so much easier to construct. I searched all through the blue scrap bins and chose the happiest brights I could find. Really, all that's left in those bins are the lighter blues. I am happy about this, because dark blues are not my favorite. Here's a slighter closer look at those fabrics:

I'm thrilled to use these up, and they make great stars. I swear the one on the top right is a deep blue, even though it does look like a black fabric in the picture. And isn't that paisley fun? 
Next up, of course, are the blue birds:

Gosh, what a bunch of personality these guys have, and they certainly seem to like hanging out in that tree. Check out those checkered orange legs! These are free-pieced birds, made without templates, with a tutorial from Lynne at Patcherie Menagerie. You can get the tutorial right HERE. The tutorial is completely worth it, because every time I make these birds, I get happy.

You can see the fabrics a little better in the picture above. Most of those scrap bits were just laying around, waiting to be used for something, and here they are in some happy birds. Not a lot of bright blues for these either, but just enough to make it work. 

Since we are halfway through the RSC, I thought I'd get a couple of progress photos of the whole lot of blocks so far. Here are the stars:

That is a nice constellation laid out on the 'design patio,' isn't it? Right now I'm thinking of setting them with blue sashing, but we'll see. 

Here is my lovely flock of birds so far, laid out on the design lawn:

Well, they are cute, but it appears that I failed to make green birds. Oh, well! They might get made another time, might not. I'm pretty cleared out of dark greens, thank goodness. I don't really have any black birds, so maybe I could substitute those. I do have some black fabrics that would make great birds.

So, there we are! A painted house and caught-up projects! What could be better? Hope you all have a great weekend. I'll just be over here, plotting what to plant now that the house is done!

Sharing at soscrappy for RSC22.


Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Projects in progress

 Hi everyone! How's it going? I'm having the strangest sensation lately. I think it might be something called "relaxation." Not sure, though, because it happens so very rarely.

I'm getting back to the sewing room and making some progress on various projects. First, though, there is this little quilty piece that I made up from the leftover green blocks from the RSC medallion:

Gosh, I think this is adorable, plus it uses up those extra blocks and keeps them out of the orphanage. I'm going to have to make more things with this block, too, because I think it turns out really well, and was really simple to make. 

As a side note, I'm pretty sure I have chosen the wrong flowers for those pots this year. The squirrels have been at them like nobody's business. They seem to hate the vinca plants, because they keep uprooting them. What do you think, gardeners? Do I need some geraniums, or maybe more petunias? What will keep the squirrels away?

Anyway, I also started in on the new Positivity project over at Sew Preeti Quilts. These are my first blocks:

Yes, the background is red. I like it! I've had these fabrics, which are from a line by Holly Taylor called Woodroses in Winter, for a very long time. I used to belong to a quilting group and I ended up with a lot of pretty fabric that is just not my style, including fabrics like these. Does that ever happen to you? You just get carried away and you're afraid of missing out and so you get fabric without thinking carefully? Yeah, I get it.

Anyway. . .these blocks are really easy, and I think they're going to use up the rest of that fabric for me and make a quilt that is fairly gender neutral. I've been calling these blocks "twisties" (mainly because of how they're made), so does that make this quilt "twisted trails?" It's a working title, I think.
There are a few other things I'm working on, and I have a picture of one of them:

These are the blocks made of green triangles from my scraps. I've taken every dark green and medium green piece out of the scrap basket, and I've cut whatever I could into these triangles. Everything that was too small got cut into squares or strings, and everything that couldn't be cut into those bits got thrown away. It was very liberating! There's a few blues in there, too, and at least one black piece. Whenever I feel like it, I stitch a few triangles, and when I have enough, I put them into a block. It's very relaxing! I have no idea how many blocks I have cut. I guess we'll see!

So that's the report from this sector for now. Lots of bits and pieces, a red and tan quilt in progress, and a nearly empty green scrap bin. And at least one squirrel who eats flowers! Maybe I'll see what I can do about that. . .have a good week, everyone!

Sharing at Midweek Makers.

Friday, June 17, 2022

Blue and green all around

 Hi all! Long time no see! I've been away for a conference in Atlanta, which was hot, sticky, and expensive, but so great to see people in person again. Everyone was so excited that it almost overwhelmed the presentations. Also, true fact: we shared the hotel with a comics convention, so there were people dressed up as various characters, including a full set of Power Rangers, interspersed with our very serious group. It was interesting! After the conference, the hubster and I may have made a couple of detours on the way home. It was fun!

Obviously, I did not take my sewing machine, and the mental break from everything was great. I came back raring to go on a bunch of things. First up in the sewing room was catching up on the Rainbow Scrap Challenge:
Yes, this is the latest update of the medallion quilt I'm making in the colors of the month, one round for each color. I love how it is turning out, even though I've made a couple of mistakes in these rounds.
The green round was for last month, and this is the block, if you can't tell:

This is a traditional block called Cracker, from Barbara Brackman's Encyclopedia. It was super-easy to make, but I didn't really pay attention to the column I was looking at, so I made the wrong size. There was supposed to be one more block per side, but they didn't fit. Oh, well! I think it looks just fine anyway, and I like the movement in that round.
The bright blue round is simple flying geese attached side by side to make a nice border. You can see that I needed a coping strip in there to bring the center up to the right size for the geese to fit. I think it works. The medallion is now about 44 inches square, which is right where it should be with 4 rounds to go. (I think.) Looking forward to that next round, which is also spectacular. Hope it's a great color!

I said at the top that we may have made a few small detours on our way home, and here is one place we stopped:

This is in North Carolina, and was a beautiful day. On the mountain it was about 70 degrees, at least 25 degrees cooler than down the mountain. The view is looking northeast toward Tennessee, which I'm pretty sure is actually in the photo, too. And that's me and the hubster with the sign, of course. We got talked into taking the sign picture by a lovely Ukrainian family (long in the US), who talked to us a bit about their country. They were very happy that their children and grandchildren in Ukraine had made it to Moldova and are safe. We took their picture, so of course they insisted on taking ours. It was a super-nice interaction.

So the medallion is caught up, and I may have pulled out some fabrics for some birds, too. I guess they're next! Have a wonderful weekend, everyone, and I'll let you know how they turn out!

Sharing at Finished or not Friday, the Patchwork and Quilts linkup at Quilting Patchwork Applique, and soscrappy for RSC22.