One Monthly Goal (OMG) January Goals Completed

I am so happy to have finished the following projects that I had schedule for January for OMG!

circa-2016-miniature-finished

Circa 2016  – Modified version of the quilt – quilted and binding completed.

miniature-dear-jane

Miniature  Jane Quilt – quilted and binding completed

sewing-machine-finished

Pat Sloan’s Sewing Machine Pattern  – quilted and binding completed

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

placemats

Christmas place mats for Doug and Jean – quilted, binding completed, and mailed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

bountiful-life-omg-jan-15-block-5

Block 6 of A Bountiful Life

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I joined the Ocean Waves Quilt A Long (QAL) only to decide that Ocean Waves is not a quilt that I want to continue with so I made a little quilt out of the one “practice” block I made.

nanettes-ocean-wave-quilt

My Ocean Waves Quilt – Miniature

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I also wanted to participate in RSC 2017 this year.  I have started with purple 4 Patches.  I will continue with this project in February, and make a decision by March if I continue on.  I may find another pattern that  I really like and start over.  Time will tell.

rsc-purple-january-2017

January Purple Blocks for RSC 2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Last but not least, Oh Glory quilt.  It now loaded on the long arm ready to be quilted!  My goal is to have it completed by Tuesday 31 Jan.

oh-glory-finished

Oh Glory Quilt – Embroidered Stars – Ready for Quilting

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Have a great day and enjoy quilting!

Reaching Goals, Forgetting and Relearning

Shock and Awe!!!!!  I have finished my goal for the week, well OK, I am 24 hours late, but they are completed.

oh-glory-finished

Oh Glory – Ready to go to the Long Arm!

circa-2016-miniature-finished

Circa 2016 – Miniature Size

 

sewing-machine-finished

Pat Sloan’s Sewing Machine

miniature-dear-jane

Dear Jane – Miniature

Remember when we were in school and we had the summer months off to play and dump the memory bank??? Well, guess what happens when one does not quilt a quilt, much less put binding on……….A mess! Hubby told me that everything one needs to know is on You-Tube – so I found this video and found two small new techniques are on the video that I was not aware of – corners and endings (doing it a different way).  So now I have to remember this video as I will be quilting quite a few quilts in the next few months and they cannot be “messed up”.

Now I plan on getting Oh Glory pinned on the long arm and tomorrow I will quilt it!  In the meantime, I really need to finish sewing those 25 + grapes on Block 5 of A Bountiful Life – will try to hold my nose and complete it tonight!

Tomorrow is the first block for Two-Step Mystery Quilt  so I will be deciding on fabrics for that project.  I like it because it is one block every 3 weeks! Next I will have to decide on pattern (and get going on it) for RSC 2017.  I have a few patterns in mind, but just not sure yet!   I am also thinking THINKING about working on the Mystery Quilt in this months Quiltmania.  It is reverse applique and I think I would love to work on that one.  There are only 6 issues in a year so I can slip a little on the start time on this one.  It would be another “fabric” decision.  Darn – looking like I will be having to really put the ole’ brain in action for the next week.  Maybe I need to check my 2017 list – I am sure that I had selected others.  Oh for more hours in a day!

I feel great as I have now completed 5 quilting projects, and applique again at night!  YEA for me!  I thought many times over the last year to just give up on my passion and sit in a chair.  Boy am I ever-blessed to have pushed the Doctor limit for my back!  In the last week even without the brace I can stand up straight again but will continue to use the brace which evidently is helping me to tell my brain to get with the program!  TENS and Braces are my favorite thing to have.  In fact, because I am not sitting so much, I THINK I am beginning to lose a pound or two out of the 8 pounds I have gained in the last 6 months due to the back hurting!  Joy to me is being able to do my walking and quilting and put in a full 10 hour day of fun!

Tomorrow my guy is going to become the President of the United States.  I never thought that what is about to take place in this great Nation tomorrow with the transfer of power would have come while I was still alive!

May the Lord Bless President Trump and the First Lady (who is such a beautiful Lady) and his entire family!  And continue to bless this Nation.  Bless all of his nominated Cabinet Members and our Congress – even those  who are so nasty and hateful at this time and chose to not attend the Inauguration of the 45th President of the United States of America.  We are all of God’s children!

Productivity at Last!

Well, I do think my non-productive years are over!  This week I have finished 5 quilting projects – and yes they are small, but I have not touched the long arm for almost 2 years.  WOW!  My goal was to have the bindings on and ready for hand work, but alas, those unforeseen requirements and interruptions.

These are two placements that I appliqued for friends for Xmas (I am a little late).  The second photo is the backside of each placement.  I do not like how my photos  using my iPhone – I am going back to my good ole’ floppy disk camera – it takes better pictures!  The quilting does not show up well, I did a meandering pattern with circles.  My HQ is not computer type so all my quilting is free motion quilting.

placemats-for-doug-and-jean

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is a pattern from Pat Sloan – I made it in Batiks.  It is needle turn applique and this is the first time I have quilted one on the long arm.  I do a meandering pattern in different variations.

pat-sloans-sewing-machine

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And, here is Circa 2016 – Modified.

modified-circa-2016

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This a mini-quilt that I made with my 9 Dear Jane Blocks.  YUP – no more photos from iPhone – this one really looks wonky!

completed-mini-dear-jane

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

These are not large projects, but I am so happy to have finished them.

I did receive my Postural Extension Orthosis brace yesterday afternoon and what a difference.  It supports my upper torso and is going to really help me be able to do more and more!!!!  The two bulging discs are in such a bad spot – they are the ones that connect the rib cage and lumbar area of the back and fusions are iffy because of the critical location – connecting the upper and lower frame.  I finally have the answer on the differences in bulging, herniated, ruptured or crushed discs.  Bulging is where it is beginning to go, herniated is not fun, ruptured or crushed means that surgery is definitely required.  I am blessed because I did not wait any longer to get an updated MRI and now I can protect my back with my brace, TENS unit, and RF treatments.  Modern medicine has really come a long way.  I just hope that I can make it until the end of my life without having to go through the intense “fix” for a situation like mine.

OK enough of the spine lesson.  Today I am going to try to work on the bindings on my completed quilt projects – and that will really make me happy to get all the little projects completely finished!  I am going to load Threads of Memory quilt from a 2014 Barbara Brackman BOM and work on it in the next week.  It is a larger project and now that I have “practiced” and have the cobwebs off the HQ (not to mention the new back brace so I will not get so tired when I quilt) I want to take more time in quilting the larger quilts.

Next I will be working on preparing applique blocks and making a final decision on a pieced project.  There are so many projects that I would love to do this will be a difficult decision, but I will only do one at a time.  I am soooo far behind on my applique projects I feel I will never catch up.

Have a great Friday the 13th!  They have always been lucky for me – so much better than the black cat crossing my path.  Hubby always laughs at me, but the other day at the grocery store one of the Checkers told me that if she leaves the house and forgets something and returns back home, when she leaves again she takes another way out of her sub-division!!!!!  I told her I would need to add that to my list of “to do’s” when that happens.  Of course Hubby really said she was “nuttier” than I am about a poor pretty black cat!  Too funny!

Circa 2016 in 2017 – Modified

I posted sometime in the past about my experience with Circa 2016 and how I had enough hair pulling with the quilt.  But, as a normal Type A, I just could not let it go….. So Tuesday I decided to try again to make the quilt.  Yesterday I finished the Medallion and thought that I would go forward, but this morning I sat in my chair drinking my morning cup of coffee and studied the finished Medallion and decided that the outside border was just too pale to continue on with the same fabric.  The longer I looked at it the more I remembered all the issues I had encountered and quickly decided I had worked on this puppy enough and I should be happy that the 3rd try yielded a perfect medallion!!!!  But, look closely at it because it now looks so drab with the same background fabric and it will soon disappear!

Perfect Medallion - Wrong color on the 2nd Border!

Perfect Medallion – Wrong color on the 2nd Border!

I made the decision to stop at this point and make a small quilt.  Then I immediately sent Carole S. an email advising her that she would be receiving a belated Christmas gift of the remaining blocks that I had made last year along with a few other goodies that she might or might not like!  Carole was the only one who wanted the blocks in case I decided to not finish the quilt.   In other words – Circa 2016 and I are F-I-N-I-S-H-E-D!   So below is a picture of a nice little quilt that will make a great sewing machine cover.  This quilt is perfectly squared!

I love the red/mauve and black with some red/mauve mixed in. Hubby takes better pictures.

I love the red/mauve and black with some red/mauve mixed in. Hubby takes better pictures.

In remaking the Medallion, here are some things that I did to make sure that it would turn out – they are little things, but I guess when I was not feeling good I might have become a little sloppy.  Goal for 2017 – NO MORE SLOPPY WORK!  It only frustrates me and bothers no one else!!!!

  1.  Chose a fabric that would not stretch as bad on the bias (the medallion is on the bias)
  2.  As I sewed each row, each section was checked for accuracy (finished 2 1/4″).  Used an accurate 1/4″ seam allowance and pressed all seams open.
  3.  The medallion before the first “small” border was to be 13″ – I made it 3 times and it always came out at 13 1/8″ and on corner was always off slightly!
  4. On the first border I cut a 2″ strip and then sewed 6 of the hour glass blocks to make sure they measured 14″.  They did, so I then started reducing the first border by 1/8″ all around the border until it measured at 14″.  This way the center was in the center and not off center!

At least I know that I can make the Medallion and it came out square to 21 1/2″ unfinished!  Another YEA!  Have a great day and I will now move on to my 2017 list.  So many of the Bloggers are listing their projects for the new year.  Some of mine are on-going and I am so behind, so maybe I will be more inspired to ‘get ‘um done’ soon!  I will make a list, check it twice, and post it next time.

Until then, have a wonderful sewing week!

The Demise of Circa 2016 – WHAT?

Greetings to all.  Although I have not done a blog for a while I have been busy (I guess you could call it that).  First of all I am so very excited for our country with the election of Donald John Trump.  May God bless him and his family and keep them safe throughout his term.   God Bless America and all of the Deplorable individuals who were in the basket with me!

Now on to the important things in our lives – QUILTING!  The last thing I remember about blogging on my blog was to show off my birthday fabrics and beginning to assemble my Circa 2016.  I am beginning to think that 2016 was just not my year for my quilting!  It seemed to start in January with the mess with Sitar’s basket quilt – which is still hanging on the rack waiting for the trash can or stems/flowers to be put on the basket, or just quilt it!  Then there was the Legacy one!  What a nightmare.  Why not throw in Grammy Squares – wrong color used for the final round!  So needless to say when I started Circa 2016 I just knew this would be a winner and a great quilt to enter into the San Antonio show next year.  I have been trying to decide how to write a funny blog on the Circa 2016 Saga and so here goes – remembering a picture can say a thousand words!  LOL

I loved making the blocks for this quilt.  Here are a few pictures showing how I put it together. (Some of the pictures are not the best, but you will get the idea as you go forward).

medallion-and-top-and-bottom

Top and Bottom Sections

ah-the-quilt

Top, Bottom, and Side Panels

But WAIT – After sending the pictures to my dear buddy Wanda (who also has an eagle eye) sent me a text and told me to really look at 2 of the blocks – Can you guess which ones? I knew that it had to be corrected because I had not paid attention to color placement!  Then I realized that on the bottom right there was a problem with puckering – made my day!!!

the-bad-blocks

The Oops Block (wrong color placement)

So back to the thing I love most – RIPPING.  Yes, I could not let the blocks stay in the quilt as it was a harmless error in color placement.  They looked great when they were not on point (at least I did not catch the problem then).  Then I realized that I had another problem – Fabric just does not “ease” in for me!!!!!  Now the quilt was beginning to take on a life of its own with nothing but problems for me (caused by me).

ah-the-mistakes

Big Big Mistake – Puckering of Seams

OK so now I have removed 2 blocks and tried to get the puckering out of the bottom left.  Then I began to realize that there was an issue with the very center medallion…..You had to be up close and personal to see it.

the-quilt-with-block-changes

OK – On the Road Again – Corrections Made!

Not so fast – the pattern called for 1 1/2″ HST border.  This is where I realized that my quilt was not SQUARE!  And it mattered – BIG LEAGUE (good saying).  Here is a picture of what happened next and yes – I ended up ripping the entire quilt apart knowing that this quilt was headed to the trash, or the “never-never-never” drawer.  I figured the problem existed in putting all the squares together on point – SOMEWHERE!

what-the-heck-happened

What the Heck Happened to My Quilt?

problem-fabric-again

The Joke – I thought the problem was the 2nd border fabric!

Being the Type A that I am I was not going to let this quilt beat me – although I had ripped out the entire quilt which took more time than I wanted to devote to the project and maybe some STRESS.  So I decided to make up my own pattern.  One thing was to put the 1 1/2″ HSTs as the border after the hourglass blocks and go from there.

the-new-circa-2016

Success!

I had even selected the block patterns that I liked from the Circa 2016 pattern to make a few more borders:

possible-block-patterns-for-the-new-2016

Candidates for the next few borders

BUT – if you will look closely at the top left of the remake of the Medallion – you will see there was another PROBLEM that would make me re-think everything about Circa 2016!  I studied it and tried to see what I had done wrong.  Bottom line?  The problem started when I put the Medallion together back in April or May.  The Antique Muslin (Moda) fabric for some reason (probably the black cat theory) was stretching and it caused me issues that are not correctable!

the-real-real-problem

See all the nice wrinkles?  Additionally, I went back to the pattern, called the quilt store that put the pattern out, and my final analysis is that I was doomed from the beginning.   My next action is to rip out the blocks and put them in the “never-never-never” drawer or the more I write about this mess I am sure that someone will receive the blocks or the trash can will be full this next Friday!  Either way, I have decided that I am done with Circa 2016 and as happy as I am with the election I am DEFINITELY not pleased with my quilting endeavors this year.  What a mess!

OK – you may ask – what lessons have I learned this year (again).  NO MORE ON LINE FREE PATTERNS!  I must not forget my own rules because as soon as I do I end up in a mess.  I really did like my quilt, but it would not be worth my time to remake it because when you rip out quilts with 1 1/2″, 2 1/4″ and 1 1/2″ blocks your fabric will not hold up and it is just insane to continue repeating something and ultimately end up with the same bad results – No MATTER WHAT.  I feel that there is an issue in the fact that the blocks finished at 2 1/4″ rather than 2″.  Most of problems I have experienced this year in my quilts are designer flaws, but then I must take the credit for NOT reading the patterns close enough or making a test block before starting.  I do believe that my mind was elsewhere!  So my 2017 Resolution is to never have a year like this one AGAIN!

Anyone interested in the blocks can send me an email and the first one I receive will get all the blocks – free shipping!

Well, there have been many times this year that I was ready to just sell all of my beautiful fabric, all of my lovely patterns, and books and get my knitting out and the rocking chair and become an old woman!  But alas, blogging makes the world go ’round and such a great way to make fun of one’s self in life’s little boo boo’s!  New and difficult quilting projects provides me the challenge I need to continue on with my passion.

I have now prepped the 3 blocks for Ms Potts (3 months behind on that project) and working on prepping the next 5 blocks for Bountiful Life.  I am almost finished with Block 6 and hopefully can be through with that one in a few days.  I am now thinking of 2017.  It has to be a better year for me because 2016 was the worst year in producing quilts than when I started quilting in early 2000.  It is time for me to start working on more complex quilts to enter into quilt shows.  I need that challenge of making a quilt for show that requires precision and 100% accuracy!

I have ordered some Kaffe Fasett fat quarter bundles for my Sweet Surrender.  I wonder if this was a mistake as I originally thought I would use my 1930’s fabric (remember the Farmer’s Wife pattern that never got off the ground?).  I am beginning to look ahead and thinking that I will delve into my Australian quilt patterns and work on them next year.  But I must finish up Stonefields and my Brinton Hall and continue on with Bountiful Life.

I pray that each and every one of you have a blessed Thanksgiving and enjoy your family – we have so much to be thankful for this year!

Grammy Squares, Circa 2016, Ms Potts, and Dresden Heaven!!!! The fun things in life!

I cannot believe that it is the end of August and we are not in the 100’s anymore!  This summer we have had 20 inches of rain here on our quiet little hill.  The 100’s appear to be a thing of the past now and I can live with the 90’s and decent humidity!   I am so ready for Fall, end of Daylight Savings TIme and a cold winter that would bring us some snow.  It has been almost 30 years since we had 16 inches of snow in the San Antonio area!  Maybe this year we will have a “real” winter!

I have been working on my Grammy Squares.  They are fun to make and I have the process down pat now!  I have pre-cut some of my strips but not all.  I had so much fabric out on the cutting table and was going to cut the strips as I needed them, but I could not take the “mess” so I have about 12 blocks (strips) ready to sew and the fabric is back in the drawer until I need more strips.   I am trying to use up the Summer of Baskets fabric by Moda.  There are 2 or 3 of the squares that may not make it in the quilt as the contracts in color did not work as well as I would like.  But that decision will not have to be made for a while!

Grammy Squares - Aug

Grammy Squares

Here are a few of the blocks close up!  The first one may be a candidate for “not in this quilt”…. I think I messed up when I used the light green for the first round, and the last picture shows a very dark block.  Maybe I will make a pillow top with them!

Grammy 3Grammy 1

image

Grammy 4

I am caught up with Circa 2016 (well OK – I have not done the ones for the 26th of August).  I hated to waste the 2 extra blocks, so will see if I can use them in the quilt.
Circa 2016 Blocks2

 

Circa 2016 Blocks

I am caught up with Ms Potts blocks.  I love the way Blocks 17 and 13 turned out, but when it came to Block 20, I gave up!  I tried 3 times to do the stars, EPP, making a whole star (not piecing) with a red batik, and then back to EPP!  I gave up – and so I am going to make Block 20 with a bias circle and the 4 flowers on it!  May throw in a few leaves, but not the Stars!  When it takes me a month to finish a simple block that turns into a nightmare, I am out of there!

Ms Potts Block 17

Ms Potts Block 17

Ms Potts Block 13

Ms Potts Block 13

Ms Potts Block 20 (replacement)

Ms Potts Block 20 (replacement)

And now – Dresden Heaven.  I enjoy making these little Dresden plates – so much fun!  I have this one down pat also.  Today I had hoped to make another 20, but all I was able to achieve was to have them ready to put together!  Oh well, tomorrow is another sew day!

Tiny Dresden Plates

I have no idea where I am going on this one, other than to just make them.  I may just make the quilt with the small ones, then again if I end up with too many of the same color I can make 2 quilts!  I just am enjoying making them.

Have a great week – getaway is just around the corner for us so my machine stitching will probably come to an end for a while after Tuesday.

Ms Potts, Circa 2016, Goodbye Dear Jane, and Hello Dresden Heaven

OK – one sentence on the weather – The weather has not changed for the good it is now 100 degrees and heat index running from 105 to 109 and this ole’ lady has finally thrown in the towel as far as walking goes for this week.  Now on to quilting!

I have (again) caught up with Circa 2016 blocks from the 29 July and 5 August!  YEA.

Blocks from 29 July and 5 August 2016

Circa 2016 Blocks from 29 July and 5 August 2016

I really do enjoy making the 3 1/2″ blocks.  They go fast and are always a challenge because of the size.  To me this is a “practice” session preparing me for some of the quilts that are waiting in line for me to make.

This summer the Margaret Potts group from BAS have 3 blocks to work on.  I have finished 2 Blocks and working on the 3rd.  The last block has 4 stars and I am using the EPP method to make them so they will be “perfect” (Ha Ha).  The pieces are so small so I had to set it aside and complete the other blocks.  I took one look at the circles and thought – OH NO!  So tiny – no bigger than a dime!!!  But I started on the block and begin to enjoy the process.  The stems are embroidered with 2 strains of variegated thread.

Blocks 13 and 17

Margaret Potts BAS Project – Blocks 13 and 17

I thought I would share with all on how I do my circles.  I have 2 sets of Karen Kay Buckley mylar circles, but the time it takes to cut the fabric, baste around the circle, and then spray with sizing and iron, that I decided to take a  different approach when making circles for my applique projects.  I use C. Jenkins Freezer Paper Sheets Here  from Amazon.  The paper is 8 1/2 x 11 and the pattern prints out great onto the freezer paper.  It is a little expensive, but the time saved is worth it.  I copy the pattern onto the paper and then cut out the pieces.  On larger patterns I have to be a little more creative, but for this project it is great as the blocks fit on the paper size just fine.  I am sure one could cut regular freezer paper and feed it through the printer, but then that takes time to do that.  (Maybe I am spoiled or getting lazy in my old age! LOL).   I still use Karen Kay Buckley circles, but only to trace around the template like I do with the freezer paper.   Here is how I prepared the small circles for the circle block above.

My technique for circles

As always, the pattern is traced on the background fabric for placement purposes using a light box and number 2 pencil.  I really thought I would have issues with the small (dime size) circles, but after working on two or three, it became easier, and besides, that is what ripping is all about when doing hand work.  It is not permanent and corrections can easily be made.

I have given up on Dear Jane.  I studied it, thought about the paper piecing, and decided that I have other things I want to work on the remainder of the year and making a quilt using paper piecing technique is not for me at this time!  I have a lot of hand work waiting in the wings to be appliqued and those should go fairly quickly (maybe by September).  I have Blocks 5 and 6 prepped for Bountiful Life, 7 more blocks for Segment 4 of Stonefields, and lots of lovely hexagons to sew together for Brinton Hall quilt.

For piecing projects I went through 5 different patterns and finally chose to make Dresden Heaven by Susan Marth.   It has mini and tiny dresden plates and such a fun project.  I finally found a pattern that I can use my 1930’s fabrics that were originally intended for the Farmers Wife… so I am happy about that, but it will take a few other projects to use all the fat quarters I purchased.

Dresden Heaven by Susan Marth at Suzn Quilts

The 1930 fabrics are not my favorite colors, but I thought that they would look good using this pattern.  This will be a fun project and one that I can cut out the plates and sew at my leisure,  remember I am supposed to be quilting on the long arm… if only I would stay away from chicken noodle soup from the can that has MSG!  I have so many notes on the refrigerator now that say “do not eat” and if only I would remember to read them!!!!!

Oh well.  I hope that everyone has had a great day and continue to enjoy your stitching.   Fall is just around the corner – 30 to 60 days!  Sometime within the next 30 days or so I will be relaxing in the RV,  visiting the Choctaw Casino, and 2 wonderful fabric stores.   I need to complete some projects to justify the fabric expenditures!