Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Remnant blocks

Today I rummaged through the remnant basket. My local quilt guild is collecting small doll quilts for the fire department. These are given to children along with a stuffed animal. Remnant blocks should give me a bit of a head start on a finished small quilt.

Some are single blocks that were the end of the line for a pattern, while others are extras that didn't make it into a quilt top. I gave up on this dog because he was too much of a blockhead, and the mouth was too fussy.

This was my start on the Gwennie-inspired Medallion challenge. I only completed the center. I used two kittens and I built a basket around them.

These are extra blocks left over from a quilt top.

I think this block was one of Angela's sampler blocks for the Rainbow Scrappy Challenge. It's a card trick block surrounded by a star.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Friendship Star Variation

Now that I am finally binding that other baby quilt, I feel I can now start the quilt I had intended to make originally, the Friendship Star Variation. I loved these blocks when I saw them on Cathy's Crazy by Design blog. I tried to make them but got it all wrong and made the other quilt instead. So now I'm calling a do-over.

I may be using a different construction technique, however. First, I always prefer to make flip triangles (squares in the corners that are ironed over) instead of half-square triangles (HSTs). Also, this lets me use partial seams which makes me happy for reasons that make no more sense than my preference for flip triangles.

In any case, I cut four 2.5 by 4.5 rectangles of light fabric, and nine 2.5 inch squares of green. I sew two flip triangles on each of the light rectangles. Then I sew a partial seam as shown in the diagram. The partial seam allows me to take the next rectangle and sew a straight seam all the way across. Same for the next rectangle and the one after that. Then, last but not least, I finish sewing the partial seam. What fun!

Only 32 more blocks to go because the block finishes at six inches and the final baby quilt will be 36 inches square.


Sunday, October 15, 2017

Busy Day

I finished machine quilting the baby quilt. This is the back.

The strips down the middle will be the binding.

And I did find more of the Manhattan Modern fabric by Bernartex. These were companion fabrics to the main line which were large asterisk-like flowers.

And yes, I get to have all the fun, while Molly takes on the hardest task--washing the dog.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Two pink sheep

If "you are what you eat," pink hydrangeas are not a bad choice. Especially if you are celebrating pink with the Rainbow Scrappy Challenge.

If you love pink, grab a friend and enjoy the pink RSC festivities. But please don't eat the patchwork.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Baby Quilt Layers

Time to finally layer and quilt this small baby quilt. And since I just layered a larger quilt, I used the batting scraps to layer this quilt. Plus, I just bought the special batting tape that lets you fuse the batting scraps together. (It's essentially one-sided fusible sold like a roll of ribbon). Unfortunately, I couldn't find it.

Molly said she filed it under "Not a Cat Toy." Buddy suggested it would be easier to just use a needle and thread. Thread is filed under "Cat Toy" so Molly came to "help."

Eventually the layers came together anyway.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Machine Quilting Setup

I finished layering the lion quilt and so it was finally time to set up the space for machine quilting. For that I put a table behind the sewing table to hold the quilt up and prevent pulling on the stitching.

This is the general setup for the sewing room. For piecing, I am now facing the design wall. My favorite part is when cat ears poke over the top of the design wall to assess what I'm up to.

Sometimes its Buddy, because Buddy has now moved his napping spot from the bedroom to behind the design wall...on the top shelf with Molly.

Molly moves from the napping spot to the ironing board to the cutting table depending on where her supervision is required.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Quilt layering continued

I want to shift the lion quilt so I can start pinning a new section. Molly thinks it needs further feline processing.

Oh my! Something is moving underneath the quilt. It had better not be staff's finger!

Sometimes even the best inspectors can get distracted if someone starts fiddling in the fabric bins.

Monday, October 9, 2017

Batting woes

Don't you hate it when you're layering a quilt, and you can't get the batting to lay flat no matter what you do. This batting is too defective to use, but I don't know if I should try and return it to the store or the manufacturer.

Oh. Nevermind.

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Two more pink speedy chickens

Here are two more speeding chickens...these are racing to the right. For more scrappy fun, visit Oh Scrap!

And here's Buddy. His favorite toy is a furry puff ball. He likes to bring it to me so I'll throw it. Last night at about 2AM, he woke me by dropping it on my face. Is this something a cat would do, or is it all dog?

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Pink Speedy Chickens

Here are two pink speedy chickens where the term "pink" is used loosely to mean "pink" or "this may be pink but it could be orange" or "this was in my pink pile but maybe its really coral." I think it would be safe to call them "transitional pink" given we just went from an orange month to the first week for pink at the Rainbow Scrappy Challenge.

I also cut fabric for two more pink chickens to run in the other direction.

Here is the entire chicken coop so far. In the beginning I was making one chicken in each color, so now to make a full quilt I will be going back and filling in...the usual state of affair for my RSC projects.

And please ignore the tiny speedy chicken. She's only visiting from an alternative universe. 

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Alternative Universe Poodle

This appears to be a poodle from the Dear Jane Alternative Universe Compendium (DJAUC). These are blocks Jane Stickle made but chose not to include in her famous quilt. I don't mean to be critical, but the poodle seems a bit rudimentary and crude. Of course, since it is confined to 4.5 inches square, there is less room to maneuver.

This is how the Alt Jane poodle compares to my full-sized poodle.

And here is the gratuitous cat photo. Poor Buddy was left at the base of the design wall. Molly was going to run up the design wall but decided to run away instead when she realized I might take her picture. Staff might have stated that "two-year old cats no longer qualify as kittens." So don't expect to see a cute picture of Molly anytime soon.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Alternative Jane Speedy Chicken

Molly agrees that there is nothing more cheery than an adorable kitten. And Molly apologizes for the pictures of patchwork that you will have to endure before you get to see another picture of her.

Here is a speedy chicken.

And yes, it is an Alternative Universe Dear Jane block...that is, it is a speedy chicken block that Jane Stickle made but did not include in her famous quilt. Instead, it is merely documented in the Alternative Universe Compendium. Conforming to the Dear Jane block, the new speedy chicken block is finished at 4.5 inches square (5 inches unfinished).

Here are some of the other blocks in the Alternative Universe.

Molly says, Whew! You made it through all that boredom, so here's your reward.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Where Am I?

I admired Cathy's (from Crazy By Design) quarterly list of works in progress. I thought I would try a simpler effort...round up the lost Rainbow Scrappy Challenge projects. I feel I have a firm handle on the sheep, speedy chickens, pinwheels and spools. But the cows...first I had to find the cows. We are almost at the last month and I only have four. And one still has horns. Happily for this dairy cow, removing the horns will only require a seam ripper.

Well, if you think the cow project is lame, you should check out the lions. The good news is that I have once again united the red lion face with its mane. Now all I have to do is give it a body and a background.


Sunday, October 1, 2017

Vintage Butterfly Quilts

Here are the bright vintage butterfly blocks. I started making this quilt and found some blocks were wispy and quiet, while another group were boisterous show-offs. The two groups did not get along. For the bright group, I'm wondering if they need wider sashing, or maybe they just need to be jammed next to each other. In any case, I've decided to make the quilts 6 X 7 blocks so I have 18 more bright blocks to make.

This is the quieter version. As you can see, quiet is relative. To see more exciting butterfly and kaleidoscopes, fly to Sane, Crazy, Crumby Quilts.  Butterflies group together on the first of each month.

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Orange Spools

I kept it simple today and made a handful of orange spools. To get your last blast of orange for the month, please visit the Rainbow Scrappy Challenge.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Piglet Mayhem

It turns out that Portland likes piglets, because Pigs in a Blanket won a third place ribbon (in the category of intermediate size traditional quilts). As part of the prize I received a laminated-badge type thing that had a detail of the quilt with the prize label on top. As I looked at it, my eyes began to cross...

For the first time, I noticed the poor confused brown polka dot piglet. To be fair, the piglet isn't confused, but the person who made it was. I mixed up which fabric was for the body with the fabric for the details. And today was the first day I noticed that poor messed up piglet. Now I am certain the judge is going to have a few incendiary comments for me...and rightly so!

To cheer you up, let's end this post with a close-up of one of Laura Heine's quilts. She is an instructor for the Portland Quilt Expo this year. I would have given her a prize for best use of Tula Pink's tuna cans and cat novelty fabric. I think it takes the cake!

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Design Wall Tryouts

I have two sets of vintage butterfly blocks...a soft set shown here. I also have a much brighter set. I could mix them up, but I liked the idea of having one quilt toned down to a 9.

Of course, Molly thought she would lend a paw. She ran up the design wall. Then I had to pick up blocks and pin them to the wall. As I pinned them, she batted at them from the other side.

But life behind the design wall has gotten interesting now that Buddy has figured out how to get to the top shelf.

He even allowed me to take some closeups.

Molly isn't too sure that she wants to share her sanctuary although sometimes she enjoys the company.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Dandy Lion Backing

Here's the fabric that I'm going to use for the lion quilt backing. Thanks to Gayle at Mangofeet, I'm going to name the quilt Dandy Lions.

And Molly made sure I went to the post office today to mail off all of the fat quarters for the September giveaway. She likes having the highest spot in a room for napping and supervising.

You may think that this is Molly posing for the camera, but really she is waiting for me to put down the camera so she can jump on my shoulders to get down from her loft. You can see she is losing her patience and is willing me to put the camera down and move closer.