Saturday, March 30, 2019

Reorg Saturday

In honor of the last Saturday of the quarter, I assembled my Tiny Tuesday blocks. Part of the challenge was finding them all. And yes, I realized that I'm missing one, but I know where it is. So that's good. If you want to see more inspiration and a last blast of green, hurry over to the Rainbow Scrappy Challenge.

Meanwhile, I'm taking out two smallish shelving units that I was using for flat folds to install a larger one.  It will be the same height as the others and hopefully I can build a ramp from one to the other so Molly can navigate from the living room to the dining room from her perch. Molly is supervising the entire operation so you just imagine how well it is going if you like frayed nerves.

Friday, March 29, 2019

Tiny Tuesday Catchup

On Wednesday, I made a microspool nine-patch thinking that was the last green block for Tiny Tuesday in March. But, of course, we need an umbrella for April Showers, so here it is. The tutorial for the Tiny Tuesday umbrella can be found at Angela's SoScrappy blog.

Some of us struggle to sew straight, so we might have a bit of curvature to our umbrella handle.

And our quilt show has now come and gone, so it's about time for me to finish up the small wallhanging that was due before the show. (We have a small quilt raffle at the show). Maybe if I start now I can get it finished in time for next year.

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Even Tardier Tiny Tuesday

I didn't realize until late in the day that it was Wednesday and that I had missed Tiny Tuesday. Apparently there was a microsecond between buying and selling a house, that Angela at SoScrappy also missed Tiny Tuesday. It seemed obvious that the block would be a Nine Patch of Microspools...but my predictive powers are weak, and instead the official Tiny Tuesday Tutorial is an adorable umbrella.

Oh well, I didn't find that out until AFTER I made this tutorial...

To make a microspool, cut two 1 by 2 inch rectangles of background fabric and one 1 by 2 inch rectangle of spool fabric (green). Also cut four 1 inch squares of spool fabric (green).

Sew two squares of the green fabric to the background fabric to make two flip triangles. You can sew them in one pass as shown on the left. Finger press or iron back the triangles and cut away the excess in the back of the triangle.

Next, sew the outer parts of the spool to the center.

This block is 2 inches unfinished and 1.5 inches finished. Rinse and repeat eight times. That is, make nine microspools.

Once you've made nine of them, sew them together. The corners will nest together nicely. And watch where the seams come together at the points so they don't get lopped off.

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Microspool Factory Back in Business

Here's a handful of spools. I'm slowly building back my piecing muscles. Meanwhile, I'm taking care of sad, neglected kittens.

Sunday, March 24, 2019

Return to Sanity and Home Again

Here's the Demented Garden Mosaic quilt on display at the Northwest Quilters' Festival of Quilts. The show was set up on Thursday and the show was open on Friday and Saturday. Tear down was Saturday night.

And who was the most neglected and abused during this time: this blog, sad forlorn kittens or my feet. Since my feet are still throbbing and the kittens are all ready ignoring me, the feet win. That is, lose. A concrete floor is merciless.

Here is the bounding bunny quilt.

I also had three other quilts in the exhibit but I didn't get a chance to take their picture. Or any of the other quilts in the show.

Okay, I may have found some time to buy some fabric...but given I was the vendor liaison, we could call it part of my volunteer duties.

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Owl Comparison

The owl on the right was made as I was making the Dear Jane fact, this owl was one of the blocks Jane made and decided not to include in her quilt. These blocks have been referred to as "Alternative Universe Dear Jane" blocks by a secret society of quilters. In any case, the new owl was modified to fit the "Tiny Tuesday" format and in this case the name "Tiny" is used ironically.

The point of bringing this up is that typically we keep our pieces to at least an inch so there is room for the quarter inch seams. This is not necessarily the case for flip triangles and so the smaller owl has .75 inch flip triangles, especially around the eyes.

And here is a cow. Molly informed me that cows now own the internet and all posts most now feature cows. Molly assures me that cats expect to take the internet back for themselves by Friday at the latest.

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Tiny Tuesday: Owl Tutorial

Yes, this wise yet ferocious owl looks intimidating despite being only 5 inches square unfinished. However, if you work on it section by section, you may be amazed how easy it is to work with small pieces. And after all, you are participating in a Tiny Tuesday project hosted by the wonderful Angela at SoScrappy, home of Tiny Tuesday AND the Rainbow Scrappy Challenge.

First, check out your scraps for owl wings, owl head fabric, owl body and owl feet. You will also want a bit of beak and some background fabric. And yes, owl eyes. Rather than cut all the pieces ahead of time, we'll move through each section. That said, I would start with three 1X8 inch strips of background fabric.

Let's start out nice and easy. You will need two 1 inch squares of beak fabric and two 1 X 1.75 inch rectangles of owl head fabric. The layout shows that we're going to add a flip triangle to the upper corner.

Place the beak squares face down on the owl head rectangles and sew a diagonal across each as shown.

Press back the triangle...finger pressing works best for these tiny pieces. If the sewing gets a bit wonky, that's okay, because you are going to fold back the fabric as if you had sewn it perfectly. Then cut away the excess from behind. (Do not cut first and then fold back because you will have lost your alignment.)

And while we're here, let's sew the beaks together.

Now the feet will be really easy. Take two 1 inch squares of background fabric and put flip triangles on either side of a 1 by 3 inch owl feet fabric.

For the owl breast, add 2 one inch squares of background fabric as flip triangles to the bottom corners of a 2.25 by 3 inch rectangle of owl breast fabric.

And now you can sew beak to body to feet.

Now let's help the owl fly by giving him/her some wings. For this you will want two 1.5 by 2.75 inch rectangles of wing fabric. You will add four flip triangles to each wing: three of background fabric and one of "owl head" fabric. This is the same fabric you used when making the beak.

Please note that the "owl head" flip triangle is added to the top right of one wing and the top left of the other wing.

Here are the wings with the flip triangles attached.

Now you will attach a 1 by 1.5 inch rectangle to the bottom of each wing. You don't really have to cut these separately...just use the one inch strips of background fabric that you started with.

Now you have the wing sections.

Now you have two wings and an owl body. Please attach.

Voila! Time to make an owl head.

Just like everything else, the owl eyes are made by attaching a one inch square flip triangle to the corner of a 1.75 square of owl eye fabric.

But let's talk about owl eyes. Here, I've taken a 1.75 inch square with a 1.25 inch square cut out of the center. This helps audition fabric for owl eyes. When using polka dot fabrics, remember that you can cut them off center to make the owl look right, left, up, down or cross eyed.

And don't forget, you can always use a solid fabric and draw an eye with a permanent marker.

So where did we leave off? Flip triangles of owl head fabric were sewn to each corner of the eyeball fabric. Now sew the eyes together in the middle. Then sew one inch strips of owl head fabric to each side and the top. (You can cut two 1 by 1.75 inch strips for the sides, and a 1 by 4 inch strip for the top.)

Next, add two 1 inch squares of background fabric as flip triangles to the top corners of the owl head.

Almost there!

Add one inch strips of background fabric to each side of the owl head.

Now sew the head to the body.

Knock Knock! Hoot's There?

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Tiny Preview

Hoot called me Tiny?

And don't forget...this is the time of year when we take our solar cats out of their heated beds and recharge them in the sun.

And here's my pony-cat dreaming that he's galloping out on the open plains.

Out of a Bind

Zounds! I didn't finish the binding until just after midnight last night. So here it is the morning after. I haven't quite found all the pins and loose threads. Happily, the quilting design ran off both ends of the quilt, so I don't have that many thread ends to deal with. Oh, and then I still have to take the lint brush to it.

And here is a closer look at the quilt. I am especially happy with the binding fabric.

I also finished the binding on the bounding bunny quilt...but it still needs some more machine quilting. Then I need to put sleeves on four quilts. Then they will be ready for the Northwest Quilters Quilt Show next weekend (March 22, 23 Portland Expo Center). Plug, plug.

While binding...I've had some time to think...and you know how some quilters pick a word at the beginning of the year to be their focus for the year? Every year I am instructed to pick the word "Molly" because she insists on being my focus. However, I'm going to add a new word...


I realize I could have made the chickens to a smaller scale and had less quilt to deal with and could have had the same effect. And yes, Molly approves of my choosing SMALLER because she thinks I'm referring to her size compared to the Budster.

Friday, March 15, 2019

Spring Chickens

The chickens are finally encased in their chicken wire. And yes, with a small amount of effort they could slip through. Hopefully the chickens won't try and escape until they are hanging at the quilt show.

And today I felt the full effects of spring. We had a nice warm day with lots of sun, and Molly broke free from her heated bed addiction. Now she is back to "helping" me. Here she is helping me machine quilt the speedy chicken quilt. Later, she helped me sew the binding strips together by standing in front of the machine.

Here is Molly helping me trim the batting around the binding. And Molly would like me to mention that she also took a full run at the design wall and successfully scaled it to the top. She obviously accomplished much more than I did today.

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

One Year Lookback

I have been quilting the speedy chicken quilt. I have used a template to make one half of the chicken wire lattice across the whole quilt. And now I am joining those sections together with a wire wrap decorative stitch. So every time I come to the join, I have to move two levers and adjust a dial. So yes, my sewing machine is the equivalent of a rotary phone.

Given I don't have much to show, I looked back to see what I was working on. And I was truly shocked to see that I finished the speedy chicken quilt top a year ago. Time is definitely playing tricks on me.

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Tiny Tuesday Log Cabin

Here's my Tiny Tuesday log cabin. Today, Angela is both sponsoring and providing the tutorial for her Tiny Tuesday block on her SoScrappy blog.  Just to prove how productive and organized she is, she's doing all of this in the middle of a move. The mere mention of moving makes my eye twitch.

Meanwhile, I wonder hoot is giving the tutorial next week and what the block will be.

Here's Buddy helping me organize my green scraps. Yesterday, he came up to me and made a very soft mew sound. I could hear it, so either my hearing has changed or he has lowered his mews an octave down into the range of human hearing. I told him in a minute I would come to play. When he heard the word play, he ran off to the scrap pile where laser mice roam. Definitely a dog.

And getting quilts ready for the quilt show has upset their routine. Lately, I have been sitting in a new place for sewing binding...a rare activity in this household. This morning I found Buddy had left one of his furball toys on the chair for me. Definitely a dog times two.

Surrounding the speedy chickens with chicken wire feels like it's taking forever. And note to self and others, when using interfacing as a template, make sure the template is on the left side of the needle or it gets roiled in the mess under the harp of sewing machine. Otherwise, you will have a visit from Mister Seamripper.

And now you can decide between coincidence or conspiracy...yesterday morning as I was driving to my local quilt guild meeting, I was passing through a residential area and a chicken ran across the road right in front of me. It was a speedy chicken so I didn't even have to slam on the brakes. And yes, the first question to come to mind is "why is that chicken crossing the road" and the second question was "coincidence or conspiracy?" And after a visit to the Google, I concluded that it was a Plymouth Rock chicken (obviously on the wrong side of the country).