Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Down the Rabbit Hole....again...

When Mary Elizabeth Kinch announced a quilt along on Instagram (see HERE), I signed up right away. You may remember I was lucky to attend a class last year that she taught in Duluth. This quilt is called Foothills and the goal was to follow the quirky placement of value (there's no way I would could have replicated that second block in the top row--unless I did it by accident--lol!).
Foothills Quilt
My plan was to resize the 12 inch blocks to make a smaller quilt. I started pulling fabrics and that was as far as I got when I saw this quilt HERE.
Well, I just happened to have a lot of woven scraps piling up on the cutting table and decided to try a couple blocks just for fun. 
This is about as far as I got without having to start digging into my stash.

I had to see how they would look with the alternate plaid blocks. 

And maybe on point? 
It's so interesting how turning the blocks makes them look so different. 

The blocks are fun to play with...and a little hard to decide how to sew them together--
Option 1

Option 2

Option 3

Option 4
Down the Rabbit Hole.
 I could play with these all day before making a sewing decision.

Back to Foothills.
 I had good intentions to follow each block's value placement, but before I even made one block I realized that there was no way I would enjoy doing that. I'm all about efficiency, so I had to go ahead make all the components for the 25 blocks and then figure out how I wanted to put them together.
Back to the Rabbit Hole....

This could go on for days!
 But so much fun too!
 I used the Eleanor Burns method to make my flying geese which is done in multiples of four, leaving me with two extra geese per block after the six needed for each Foothills block. 

Those extra flying geese has led to this.
Yes, I'm even deeper into the  Rabbit Hole....!

Time to stop playing and get to work--if you see me in the Rabbit Hole, stop and say HI! 

Sunday, March 4, 2018

March Goals

I promised a flat photo of On Ringo Lake a while back. I've given up trying to get outside for a photo, so pinned it up on my design wall--not the best lighting! 
Again, I only made 32 blocks-- in the mystery you were to make 50. 

All in all, it was pretty painless despite all those pieces.
 Broken down into steps over several weeks makes it a lot easier, although those sashing were tricky! 

Well, the backing is pieced......

....the binding has been made......

...and even the label has been readied.....

I guess I've avoided this long enough!
Primitive Garden will be my March One Monthly Goal.
It's about time I got this one done, right? 
Linking with One Monthly Goal HERE
Take me to the OMG March Link-up

Sunday, February 25, 2018

A Little Sunday Slow Sewing

My Cherry Basket quilt wasn't really quite finished--I almost forgot the label! We seem to have endless snow outside--perfect for staying in the sewing room and getting some hand work done.
BTW, these little Dip & Dab glue tubes from Roxanne's are pretty handy. I bought a ton of them (as well as the large refill bottle) from Quilt in a Day when they were on sale. Quilt in a Day has a daily special and I've scored some sweet deals! You have to sign up for an email alert on their home page so you don't miss the daily deal. Their shipping is very reasonable too! 
Okay, enough of that! 

It won't take long to get that label stitched down, but I'm not in danger of running out of hand work material. My 13th Mrs. Billing border is slowly coming along. I've stitched out 48 pairs for each of the four sides and now need to put them together in rows. The fun never ends (sarcasm!).
If only I could hand piece like Yoko Saito. If you have seen THIS VIDEO, you know what I mean--she is incredible! 

At least my corners are done! 
Linking with Slow Sunday Stitching HERE
Slow Sunday Stitching

Saturday, February 24, 2018

Mission Accomplished

It took a lot of  "nose to the grindstone" appliqueing, but I managed to stay focused (and not start any new projects)--resulting in a finished Cherry Basket quilt!  
Cherry Baskets designed by Bonnie Sullivan of All Through the Night
I made 18 blocks (a deviation from the pattern) so my quilt measures approximately 60" by 77".
It was fun to make, although putting the blocks together was a little like sewing fabric Jello--every edge was on the bias! Quilting it was lots of fun though. 

The continuous curve quilting in the baskets was very quick. I thought the light triangles at the top of each basket looked a bit like a doilies, so I did some loops  in them to make them seem lacy. I didn't do any quilting in the appliques--just outlined with monopoly.

The new placement of my machine is working out great--much better lighting from the windows and above! 

Red binding just for fun.

One thing that was a little stressful was squaring up the top after quilting. There aren't a lot of  parallel seams to use a check points, but I think I finally got it--whew!  

This shows you how big these baskets are--I was pretty surprised when I first started putting them together! My design wall is almost filled with Cherry Baskets!
Cherry Baskets was my One Monthly Goal for February HERE and also was my chosen project for Bea and Cecile's Basket Sew-A-Long HERE
Take me to the OMG Finish Link-up

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

February Goal

I've decided that my February One Monthly Goal will be my Cherry Baskets quilt. I'm not sure I will be able to get it quilted, but if I get it all together, that would be awesome. 

You can see in the background of this photo that my quilting machine is kind of unavailable for use right now--part of the big re-organization mess I've made for myself. Another goal that I have ASAP is to finally sort through these baskets of scraps. I think it was a goal I had over a year ago too, but it never happened. 

It may be time to start a second 2.5" square container--I can't get the lid to stay on this one!  
One thing I've accomplished already this month it to make a pressing surface for this chest--thank you Mr. Home Depot man (and Mr. Moosebay!).  It's not quite "regulation" big board size, but fits my space nicely and I was able to eliminate my ironing board which I've been wanting to do for ages. It seems much better to have a pressing area with storage and a smarter use of my small sewing real estate! 

Having the Cherry Baskets to stitch on has been a blessing when the standing in one place pressing and cutting scraps gets to be too much!

Linking with One Monthly Goal HERE
Take me to the OMG February Link-up!

Sunday, January 28, 2018


One of my goals for January was to applique two Cherry Baskets each week for the Quilt A Long with Patchwork Insprirations HERE.

I need 18 baskets for the setting I have decided on. I've been tempted to machine applique the cherries and leaves, but my Juki only does a straight stitch and there is no place right now to set up the Bernina.
 Hand applique it is!  

I was asked if it's difficult to sew the diamonds together. It's actually pretty easy! There are four different descending strip sets sewn together plus one single strip (hard to see on the far right).
Each strip set gets trimmed at a sixty degree angle. 
It wasn't in the pattern, but I pressed the 5 and 3 strip sets toward the light top and the 4 and 2 strip sets the opposite way. I think it helped with sewing them together since they nestle a bit and the bulk is reduced.  

And then cut at that angle to make the basket units. I was able to get about 9 or 10 of these units from each strip set. I used a pretty small stitch length when sewing the strips together because I was worried about them unraveling at this point--lol! 

Here is one unit from each of the four strip sets plus the single strip (cut the same way as the sets) for the right corner. 

After sewing the units together, trim off the tops leaving a quarter inch seam allowance from the darker diamond tips. See--- so easy!!!

And here is my main One Monthly Goal--On Ringo Lake!
 It was pretty messy outside and since my sewing space is a disaster, I had to do a chair shot. If I remember, I will try to get a flat photo soon.. 

I still have to attach the label for On Ringo Lake and then I will relax and do a little Slow Sunday Stitching on the rest of my basket handles today. 

Linking with One Monthly Goal HERE and Slow Sunday Stitching HERE 

Also linking with Quiltville On Ringo Lake link up HERE
Take me to the OMG Finish Link-up!Slow Sunday Stitching

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

A Little Slow....

This week has been pretty crazy--hard to believe it's only Wednesday! I've already had my teeth cleaned, my wrists injected with cortisone, and my hair cut. What I haven't done is any sewing. I'm in the process of rearranging my sewing room, literally moving every single thing but my design wall (which may get moved yet). Lots of cleaning, sorting and purging has been going on, and I am pretty happy with the new layout. My only problem is finding a good set up spot for my printer/laptop. I am way behind on my internet quilt trolling--lol! 
I did get some things accomplished while at quilt camp--a few more 4"x 5" Anthology blocks.
They are pretty fun to make and so darn cute since they are so little.

A few more string blocks for Jamestown Landing got added to the pile--I need a lot more of these before I can start making blocks. 
Another border for Mrs. Billing was finished too! Unfortunately, the next border I need to attach is going to have to be hand sewn--way to many Y seams for me to machine sew!  

I also got the diamond pieced bottoms of my Cherry Baskets sewn at camp. When I got home, I prepped the handle units using a piece of freezer paper ironed to the backgrounds.

Before I left for camp, I prepped a lot of cherries and leaves and drew up an overlay from preview paper for general placement. I'm not being too exact on where the applique goes as long as it's in the neighborhood--lol! 
At least I've been able to get a little hand stitching in in the evenings but I'm afraid it will be a while before I'm back to some serious piecing.....
back to the big do-over!