Progress is Here – Finally

Here I am on 19 October and life is really getting back to normal!  A daily routine that I love, coffee, walking, breakfast, and the rest of the day quilting!!! Pure Heaven!  We have AGAIN changed travel plans and will be going to Galveston Beach for a week in November!  YEA!  After 17 years of wintering in Arizona to me this is going to be so much fun!  Next year a trip to Michigan to visit with Doug and Jean!  In the meantime though, I am quilting and have made progress with my projects although I did lose 3 days last week when we upgraded our iPhones with Verizon.  Now that was not fun but we persevered and I got over it!

I have started working on Mountmellick, a Di Ford Mystery Quilt in Quiltmania magazine in 2014.  It took me 2 days to prepare the medallion for appliqué, but I now ready to start the appliqué work.

Mountmellick Medallion Pattern

The process involves Broderie Perse  a technique that I wanted to work with for a long while.  I purchased a lot of Dutch Chintz fabric for use in making the Australian reproduction quilts, but had to put this on hold for a few years. Now I am ready to embark on my goals of 2014 and beyond!

I first began by auditioning different fabrics to use in the Medallion and came up with this selection.

Auditioning of Fabrics – The light-colored fabric with small flowers did not make it in the final cut!

Next step was to prepare the back ground for placement.  Then preparing the separate appliqué pieces.  For the broderie press flowers I played “let’s play cut out flowers” and here is what happens to beautiful expensive fabrics to achieve the goal required in this quilt for the medallion.

Dutch Chintz Fabric Cut Up

Alas – the final result of 2 days of work.  The stems took longer to appliqué and one can barely see them but after needle turning the flowers I believe more of the stems will show.  The leaves in the upper right hand corner are possible “changes” to a couple of the leaves in the middle right side where the two leaves are the same.

Ready for Applique – Stems finished – Flowers Ready for Applique

I have made progress (faster than I thought) on Sweet Stitches. I have completed Block 4 and will prep Block 5 tomorrow.

Mr Easter Bunny – April Block

Sweet Stitches – January thru April Blocks

The embroidery goes faster than my needle turn appliqué. My hands are working but, but it does make them “act up” a bit when I overdo the hand work, so today I am going to go back to the month of May when I loaded a quilt in the longarm and try to get it finished in the next day or so.  This quilt was my first appliqué quilt called Hearts which was made in 2003.  Hum a lifetime ago!  Since I am not a real scrappy person, I was surprised at the outcome for my first try with colors.   I retired in 1999 and learned how to quilt by watching Alex Anderson on PBS – really miss her from those years.  Elly Sienkiewicz’s books and Anita Shackleford were my main teachers.

Hearts – First Applique Quilt from 2003

An update on my CutterPillar Glow.  This tool is so neat and so worth the $110.00.  It functions as a cutting mat (the grid just lies on the glow mat) AND is so great to trace patterns for appliqué or embroidery patterns!!! BUT BEWARE – The mat below is a regular cutting self-healing mat and works great.  They also sell a glass self-healing mat that I ordered and received last week, but decided to call Cutter Pillar and ask about using the glass mat with my rotary cutter.  They said it would, of course, dull the blade on the rotary cutter (obvious) BUT that to be careful because it could slippery to work with.  Well with the recent surgeries I did not want to have an accident.  I was going to send it back to the Quilt Store – but the mat cost $22.00 and I had already paid $9.00 for shipping to me and then it would cost $10.50 to mail it back, I quickly decided to keep it and purchased a book of stamps!  I will try it and then post my opinion as to whether or not it is smart to purchase the glass mat!  Hope this information is useful for all.  I still strongly recommend this cutting mat – especially if you only have a small space for cutting.  I have a full size cutting table so that is not an issue for me, but when cutting small pieces this is great to have the backlight!

CutterPillar Glow Mat

I DO NOT RECEIVE ANY COMPENSATION FOR RECOMMENDING THE ABOVE PRODUCT. I am just sharing information about a tool that is great!

Well, that is what I have been up to and hoping to be even more productive as time progresses.  Hoping that you have a great week-end and enjoy sewing today!

Catching Up and Still Washing Fabric!

Well, Spring has sprung and I think Fall is in the Air! Yup – waiting on the Cold Front – no longer are they Vortex – Now we have Vortex Allergy Season. Love it – a name for everything!

Here is another Lucy Boston Block (potential)  As you see I have not sewn them together – Can I take credit for doing this much (LOL).   I am still on the look out for more Jinny Beyer border fabrics.

Lucy Boston Block 2

Lucy Boston Block 2

 

I received my new order of Jinny Beyer fabrics and this should be very interesting. There are many possibilities for Lucy Boston, not sure but may have to really work on incorporating colors. Good Exercise! Here are the fabrics. I may be yelling for help on this one.

 

Monochrome in Black

Monochrome in Black – Jinny Beyer

Monochrome in Blue

Monochrome in Blue – Jinny Beyer

Monochrome in Red

Monochrome in Red – Jinny Beyer

I am very pleased with this shipment of fabric from another source.  The fabric was cut not ripped, and I was given about 1 to 1 1/2″ for the shrinkage.  It appears that this RJR line shrinks about 1 to 2 inches.  There was some loss but not a lot.

I have finished the April Block for the Pat Sloan BOM.

San Juan, Puerto Rico Block

San Juan, Puerto Rico Block

 

Today my goal is to finish working on the Medallion for my Di Ford Mystery Quilt.  I need to applique the stems down so I can cut out my flowers accordingly.  There is not a lot of work in this Medallion, the time is in the selection of fabric in order to get the right colorway.

Have a Blessed Palm Sunday.   This week for sure will be more productive as I “think” I am through with the fabric shopping.  (for a while)

Di Ford’s Mystery Quilt and Lucy Boston

Well, this was the week that was!   Spring is here and the leaves are absolutely such a beautiful green.  The Bluebonnets are gone along with the Indian Paints.  We had a wonderful wildflower season and such a surprise since it was such a dry winter.

It was a fun week looking for reproduction fabrics with flowers for Di Ford’s Mystery Quilt and finding  new fabrics for Lucy Boston quilt.

Topic for the day is a discussion on whether or not to rip or not rip fabric.  Years ago when we purchased fabric for our clothes, it was usually “ripped”, meaning that they would make a small cut and then rip the fabric off the bolt!  Yup, that was then.  About 12 years ago I had just started quilting and 10 years ago I started piecing as a “serious quilter” using the better grade of fabric from Quilt Shops.  I remember in 2003 ordering (on the phone) some Robyn Pandolph Folk Art Christmas fabrics from a local quilt store.  I was recuperating from back surgery and was unable to go for long drives, so they mailed the fabric to me.

Well, stupid me thought that “quilt stores” did not “rip” fabric for quilts, but I was so wrong.  I made a quilt with the fabric and started to hand quilt it (before I had a long arm machine) and the first needle stab yielded a run in the fabric.  This was caused by the fact that the fabric was “ripped”.  In fact, on all of the Folk Art Christmas (which was heavily dyed)  the thread breakage went about 2″ into the fabric and caused the threads to be weakened throughout the yardage.   I did not think it was necessary to ask if they ripped or cut fabric, but after this experience I made it a habit of asking before purchasing.

That shipment of fabric cost me dearly.  Each piece had to be trimmed and I lost at least 1 1/2″ off each piece.   Muslin will shrink about 3″ and Moda fabrics always shrink about an inch, so a good quilt shop will make sure that you are given an extra inch to accommodate that shrinkage.  This particular store did not.

A few years down the road, the fabric suppliers started putting tags on the bolts indicating that “this fabric should not be ripped.”   I was so happy to see them do that and I thought that those “rip or cut” questions were over.  One time I was in a store and forgot to ask and when I saw that they had ripped it I refused to purchase it. In addition, I do not purchase fabric from a store that has previously ripped the fabric off the bolt because the problem is still within that bolt.

So, shock of all shocks when I received an order from Jinny Beyer last week I could not believe my eyes – all fabric had been ripped.  I had ordered 1/2 yards, plus a 1/4 of a yard of a variety of border fabrics.  Strings were everywhere and I knew that I was the loser because by the time I had trimmed and washed the fabric I would have been lucky to have had 14 inches to work with as the pieces were cut right at 18″.

The mistake was on me  for not asking “rip or cut”.  This mistake cost me $12.00 in shipping,  plus a 15% restocking fee for returning the fabric.  I was advised by the store that they state that they rip fabric on their website.   I found it embedded in their “Customer Service” so shame on me for not asking, or searching the web site for that information.  Who would have known?

If you prefer to not have your fabric ripped you might want to purchase it from another quilt store. This is by no means a statement to slam Ms Beyer because I love her fabrics.  It is a choice.   There is a reason that some of the stores still “rip” at least this is what I am usually told, “it puts the fabric back on the straight of grain”.  OK, but I would rather deal with that and not deal with fabric that I will lose 2 to 3 inches because it was ripped instead of cut.

In the meantime,  I have dealt with quite a few shops over the US this week and I must say the Customer Service was wonderful.  I have received most of my fabrics that I have ordered, along with my or of  3″ clam shell, 1/2″ Hexagons, and 1″ squares from paperpieces.com for my Lucy Boston.

I have also been working on Di Ford’s Mystery Quilt.  Another blogger, Happy Appliquer had indicated that she had a problem with the second border and it really concerned me because I have never participated in a mystery quilt.   If I have learned anything about patterns it is to make test pattern before cutting out all fabrics for the project.  I am so glad I did because I left the squares at 2″, put a strip together and realized that it would have been too long.  Whew!  Saved myself some heartache!  I decided that I needed to confer with someone regarding this so I contacted Homestead Hearth and asked about the border cutting instructions.  We discussed the problem I was concerned about and after I spoke with them the light bulb came on in my head!   Sue also sent me a confirming email this morning.   Many thanks to them for clarifying the instructions for me.

Bottom line – the instructions are a bit confusing since they forgot to add one “itty bitty” piece of information which was to trim the 2″ square that has tiny appliqued circles on them,  down to 1 7/8″ before you sew the pieces together for the 2nd border.  Problem resolved.  

I really have not accomplished a lot this week other than spend a lot of bucks on fabric, watch Hubby put a porch roof on our Studio, and had two doctor appointments.  So next week I might have something more interesting to blog about!  Oh yes, I did work on fabric selection for the center medallion of the Di Ford project.  Doesn’t look like I accomplished a lot, but it does take time to make sure the fabrics will blend well together.   (Good excuse?)  I am still auditioning the final choices for flowers.

 

Medallion for Di Ford Mystery Quilt

Medallion for Di Ford Mystery Quilt

 

Fabrics for Broiderie Perse Flowers

Fabrics for Broderie Perse Flowers

Have a great week-end and enjoy your quilting.