Saturday, February 4, 2023

Pieces of pink

 Hello everyone! I hope you all had a lovely week, though it was quite cold, wasn't it? We probably should expect that in February, but somehow it always feels like a slap in the face when I step out the door. We're expecting it to be 60 in the middle of next week, though, so it's like the weather has mood swings.
 
By now you know that February's color for the rainbow scrap challenge is pink. I love pink and have a whole bunch of it, in pieces, in scraps, in yardage-- and in unfinished projects. But before we get to that, you know I had to dive right in and make a block:
 
 
But wait, there's more! Yesterday I was able to finish putting this one together, too:
 
 
For those of you who are new here, I have one of these blocks that was made by my great grandmother and it's one of my prize possessions. The light makes both of these look a little wrinkly, but isn't the pink fun? Polka dots always look festive, and I just love the raspberry in the second block. I don't know that it's really a star, but it's close enough.
 
Now to those unfinished projects. . . if you recall, my plan is to make as many things as I can each month from the scrap bins in the hope of emptying those babies out. I have a project in progress that will use the pink scraps and is probably finishable this month. Here's where it is right now:
 
 
This is a crossed canoes quilt top that I started last summer. I cut a whole bunch of pieces and made a few blocks, then put it away for a while. I pulled it out this week, ripped apart the blocks I'd made so that I could distribute the patterns and such a little better, and then started stitching some more parts together. Then I stopped before I could cut more pieces so that I could use the bigger pieces for some blocks. When I'm done with those, I'll use up as much as I can of the scrappy pieces that are left. I only made a few of the orange parts for a little sparkle in the quilt, but I'll probably take them out at the end.
 
There's one more pink sort-of project that I'd be thrilled to tackle this month:
 
 
Not a great picture, but all of these parts are leftovers from the last time I tried to make a Bonnie Hunter mystery quilt. I redid the final quilt layout in a much smaller fashion with many fewer pieces, and all of these were left.  They're all the same, triangles in a square, and there are dozens of them. Any good ideas out there?
 
That's all my pink progress so far! How is yours coming along? It's certainly fun to play with this happy color while it's nasty outside, isn't it? 
 
Sharing at soscrappy for RSC23.

Wednesday, February 1, 2023

Triple project updates

 Hi everyone, and happy February! Are you caught up in the ice storm that is sweeping the country right now? I hope not, and if you are, I hope you are safe. We are not in the path of the storm, but that didn't stop our furnace from giving up the ghost. We had a very shivery night because they needed a part so it couldn't be fixed right away, but it did finally get fixed. $1700 later, it should be good for another long while now.

Meanwhile, I'm working on a few different projects at the same time. As always. First, there is the Stay at Home Round Robin:
 

This is my finish of the first round, which was spool blocks. Not my favorite block! But it turned out all right and made a nice chain at the top and bottom to turn my center into a rectangle. This now measures about 32 by 24 and is ready for the second round, which is stars. I'm working on them! They're multicolored and very festive.

I also started finally doing the final assembly on this quilt, which I started last year for Hands2Help:



I don't know why I never finished this. I think there was just a lot going on right then and it just got pushed to the side. Sarah is starting up Hands2Help again this year, and I'm here to tell you that it's a lot of work, so give her as much support as you can. I'm hoping to have this one all finished in time to donate for H2H this year. The pattern for this quilt, such as it is, can be found right HERE.

The last thing I'm working on today is yet another repurposing of old blocks:



Not a great picture, but you get the idea! I made the strings a LONG time ago and used some of them in a different project (still unquilted--sadness!) but was left with a whole bunch of string half-blocks. There they sat (because I can't throw anything away) until I saw the Heading North pattern by Sandra at mmmquilts. I knew I would use this layout, so I purchased the pattern and here we are. My blocks are a little smaller than Sandra's but I love it already. I also have a cool idea for making it a bit bigger. We'll see how it works out.

And there we go! Everyone stay warm and safe. I'm leaving you with a picture of the ancient heater cover in my office. I think it would look great as a hand quilting pattern, don't you?



Sharing at the SAHRR and Midweek Makers.

Thursday, January 26, 2023

Jazzing up January

 Hi everyone! How are things going for you? We are experiencing the grays of January. You know what I mean-- sometimes it rains, sometimes it's just cloudy, sometimes it snows, but mostly it's just gray. We did have actual rain and a few spits of snow this week, but nothing stuck to the ground. That's totally okay with me! Sometimes I miss it, but I do not miss shoveling.

What with all the January-ness around, and having spent a bunch of time with a non-favorite color, I decided to pull out something bright and happy this week. I ended up quilting up this fun toddler-size quilt:


Doesn't that just raise your spirits? This is a quilt I made to test Preeti's pattern Arabella's Garden, which you can find right HERE. I had fun making it and even more fun quilting it up. It certainly made me feel happier, and I think it adds to the landscaping outside.


As fun as the front of the quilt is, take a look at the back:


I love this so much. This is a piece of an Eric Carle fabric that I got a long time ago, but I didn't realize the animals would be so big so I didn't use it as planned. It works great as a happy backing for this quilt! I might like it better than the front. It's a close call.


I did a couple of experimental things when quilting this quilt. The first is that I used one of those plastic extension tables that you can buy to fit around your machine bed so that you have a larger sewing surface area. It was a disaster. It was made by my machine's manufacturer and came with the machine, but it just didn't work. It kept moving, and the quilt kept getting snagged on the edge or the end of it. If you look at the picture above, you can see the results of the snagging. I only used the table for half of one stitching line, and I left it in because I didn't feel like ripping and I doubt anyone will notice it.


The other experiemnt was using a poly batting instead of cotton. It worked pretty well! I used Hobbs Poly Down. It has a "hand" like 100% wool and quilted just beautifully, and it makes a really nice texture. Nothing like old poly batting! The only thing I would do next time is zigzag the finished edges before binding because it kept puffing at the edge while I was stitching the binding on. It was a little annoying, but the quilt got bound.


So there was this week's cheerful quilty session, which was much needed since classes also started this week. Along with all the January, I needed the cheerful!

Hope everyone has a lovely weekend, and that it is colorful and not gray. If it is gray, I prescribe yellow stars. Almost always makes me cheerful!


Sharing at Confessions of a Fabric Addict, Brag About Your Beauties, Finished or not Friday, and the Quilting, Patchwork, Applique linkup, too. 

Saturday, January 21, 2023

Blue scrap obsession

 Hi everyone, and welcome back to another exciting episode of "blue scrap obsession." I have had a very busy week, but for some reason I couldn't stop thinking about getting those blue scraps used up. Does that ever happen to you? I think I was just trying to distract myself from some very boring stuff I had to do. Now that the boring stuff is done, maybe I can work on another project. Maybe?

I'm happy to report that all that thinking about the blues also led to stitching up the blues, and believe it or not, most of those blues are used up! Here is the biggest thing I put together this week:


This is about 24 by 28, with 4 inch finished blocks. It was super-easy to put together and went fast. See those happy yellows? They came from the box of 2-inch squares. I think most of them were from when I cut some squares in the wrong size and I'm thrilled to get them used up in a quilt top. I didn't get a chance to quilt this, but I will at some point, maybe after I have another mini to do at the same time.

I also made these two 6-inch blocks:


I made these thinking that I would quilt them and bind them and use them as coasters. This could still happen! We'll see.

Finally, inspired by Julie's awesome crumb projects and Preeti's scrap vortex quilts, I stitched the remaining weird bits into two small scrap slabs:


No idea what will become of these, but they saved those little bits from the trash. 

After all that, here is all that I have left of the dark blue scraps:
 

Can you see me happy dancing? Honestly, I could have made a whole lap-sized quilt top just from that bin, and I almost wish I had. Whatever! I am so happy they are gone into some useful things, including starter blocks for two new quilts.
 
So now I'm done with blues! I still have a bunch of lighter and medium blues, but I think those will get used in a different RSC month, and here's hoping it isn't next month because I'm now incredibly tired of blue. Looking forward to a more joyful color next month.

Everyone have a good weekend! I believe it is a small person's birthday, and so we are headed for a birthday party. Looks like cake and ice cream is in my very near future!

Sharing at soscrappy for RSC23.