Still Here – Playing and Preparing Civil War Bride

What a fast-moving 12 days (29 Feb – 11 March).   Just as I was going to start on Civil War Bride (CWB), on 29 February I tried to do the splits while getting out of the bathtub – Well, of course Mr Sciatica came to visit and stayed too long!  On the 3rd of March I received a “numbing” shot that kept me down on Thursday and Friday and finally on Saturday (March 5th) I was able to begin my journey with the CWB.  YEA!

My goal was to prepare 6 blocks at one time so that I would be able to work on the 2 blocks each month and not have to stop to prepare each month’s blocks. (At least for 3 months – LOL).  I finished 3 of the background blocks and realized that there are some blocks in this quilt that I would not enjoy working on and do not want the challenge.  I knew that Block 1 was fine except for the “birds?” that were flying in to the flowers were a little weird and I preferred hummingbirds – so off to finding a small bird outline to replace the “birds?” in the original quilt.   I found one so I moved on to Row 1, Block 2.  The “Eagles” were definitely not going to stay on that block.  I have replaced them with Red Birds.  OK – finished that change.  Then on to Row 1, Block 3.  I did not like the strawberries, so found a neat template from EQ7 to replace the strawberries.  My original backgrounds that I traced for Blocks 2 and 3 are now in the NEVER TO BE USED BIN – called trash can!  On to Row 1 Block 4.  The small peacock just did not give me a good feeling either – did not like the feet – so I revamped this one myself!  It is looking so much better.  On to Row 1, Block 5 and Block 6.    Those birds just had to go.  I have learned that I can needle turn applique almost anything, but it has to be a “pleasing” block, or I will just forget doing the quilt.

I am using “The Lost Boy Quilt” pattern for my basic pattern setting and “Bountiful Life” pattern for block preparation because it provides a more professionally drawn pattern, and Patricia Cox’s “Folk Art in New York City” for birds.  Pat draws the most beautiful birds in her rendition of the Civil War Bride quilt.   It really has made a difference in how my blocks will look.

It took me all day Sunday to do the changes, and I now have Block’s 1 and 2 are ready to applique.   Here is a picture of the layout of Block 1 with the new birds in the top right (have not selected fabric yet) and left corners.

Block 1

Block 1 Blue Bells and Apples

In late 2014, my friend Cathy and I decided that some day we were going to do CWB.  I decided I would start by making Block 1 from Bountiful Life pattern.  There are 2 things I do not like about the block – the swooping birds (?) and the vase.  The color is great (all done in batiks) BUT it fell flat.  I embroidered around the vase to help it stand out, but realized that I had selected the wrong batik for this piece!  So this block will probably turn into a wall hanging, or a medallion for another quilt.  This time I am desperately trying to blend all colors as I go along.  For me it is working, but I am not looking forward to putting the fabric in its original place when this project is complete!

Lost Boy Quilt Block 1

Block 1 – Made in 2014

Block 2 is mostly leaves. This block took a little more time in selecting the fabrics.  I could not decide whether to use the same fabric for all of the leaves or selecting 2 fabrics to provide a contrast.  I chose 2 different greens.   I changed the birds to birds in lieu of the Eagles.  I tried to find a different Eagle, but was unsuccessful and am pleased with the Blue Birds.  I am hoping the fabric I selected for the heads and tails will turn out as I hope.  My goal for this quilt is for the fabric to have some movement and contrasting colors.   (The picture is a little blurred but the colors are accurate)

 

Block 2

Block 2 Blue Birds

If I had not made a design change decision I would have probably thrown in the towel on making this quilt.   But, I have invested in 4 different patterns for this quilt – so that was not an option.   I am now a  happy camper and look forward to working on the project.

Well here it is FRIDAY – the weeks are flying by and it is already the 11th – hum… I had better hurry so I can have the blocks completed by the 31st.  Today I am finishing the preparation work of the other 4 blocks.  I have Blocks 3 and 4 ready to work with the fabric selection and 2 more to trace the backgrounds.  I use Jenkins freezer paper which saves me so much time in preparing the applique pieces.

My goal (what a laugh as I am just not working fast enough to meet them) is to have all six blocks ready to applique by Sunday evening – any bets on that one.  If I can only keep those unforeseen requirements out of my schedule I might just make this one.

Have a wonderful week-end.

Does Organization Count in Quilting?

Greetings again from La Vernia, Texas.  The weather is exactly what I have been waiting for – cold, damp, and Winter is definitely here. Now having said that, I hope that this is not a trick from Mother Nature and that we go back to summer hot and humid days before the end of the year.  I have so much more energy with the cooler weather. Although it  would have been nice to have a Fall Season, but here we are in the 40’s during the day and high 30’s at night, green grass and green leaves on the trees.  Well, as long as I wake up in the mornings, I am a happy camper.  Here is what I see when look at out my Bay Windows in my Studio while sewing.

 

Window View 1

View of our Back Porch of the House

 

 

Window View 2

View from the other Window – Notice the Deer Corn, Water, and Bird Feeder

OK – Now to what I have accomplished since I finished Darryl’s quilt.  Yesterday I washed all of the fat quarters that I had purchased last month….Over 150… So much fun. I was looking for that Recliner by 5PM.  Today I finished ironing them and putting them away.   Next I pulled all the fabric I had thrown in the drawers the last 2 months and  rearranged them in the 2 new Elfa drawers.  I bet I am the most 2014 Organized Quilter in Texas, have not met all of my 2015 goals, but hey does being organized count?  LOL.

New Elfa's

New Elfa Drawers – The first one is for my Long Arm supplies

On Tuesday I found out that the Dutch Chintz I had purchased (the border fabric) was for the Tree of Life Panel…..Oops…..So in order to use that expensive purchase, I ordered the Tree of Life panel along with 2 other pieces of Dutch Chintz to complete the Tree of Life and for the Mountmellick quilt (see how positive I am – I just know I can do this).

Tree of Life Panel

Tree of Life Panel

Here are the other pieces of fabric that I will use with both of the quilts.

Dutch Chintz for Mountmellick

Dutch Chintz for Tree of Life

I have not abandoned my Happy Scrappy quilt – Here is the 3rd border.  The circles are little flowers from the line of fabrics I will be using.  Not sure what is going to be next – a surprise to you and probably me too.

Happy Scrappy Border 3

Besides Happy Scrappy, Threads of Memory, Mountmellick projects,  I want to start on the Civil War Bride Quilt…….There are four (4) different versions of this pattern.  Each has a different name.  Quite interesting.  I purchased the first one in 2004 from Pat Cox at the Houston Show and had no idea what I was buying – just like the picture and dreamed of making the quilt.  Here they are – let me know your favorite.  I am thinking I will be mixing and matching.

Folk Art in New York for Jean

Folk Art in New York for Jean

Civil War Bride

Civil War Bride

The Lost Boy Quilt

The Lost Boy Quilt

 

A Bountiful Life

A Bountiful Life

And now to the kitchen to play Suzy Homemaker and make some 2 Alarm Chili and beans for Clay and Spaghetti Sauce for tomorrow for Dan and Clay…..Hopefully tomorrow I will make a decision and get with the quilting program and quit increasing my “Stash” and make some serious quilts.  Have a wonderful week-end – Cannot believe it is the 15th of November 2014!   Enjoy.