Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Crazy Basket Case Update

Every month I've made a block for my Crazy Quilt Journal Project 2012 (CQJP 2012) challenge which is a lap quilt called "Crazy Basket Case" which uses a lot of vintage transfers of baskets, is mostly done in reds and white, and hopefully I have finished each seam with a different treatment.

For December I have two blocks finished and ready to submit. But then I have several more blocks to finish in order to complete enough for my lap quilt.

 CQJP 2012 December block 1
 CQJP 2012 December block 2.
 And here are all my finished blocks so far laid out with the rest of the remaining  baskets embroidered and ready for cq blocks to fill in some blank spots. That means I have 5 blocks to complete before I can start assembly of my lap quilt. (Actually, I've got the top block that is unfinished in this photo almost finished but have stopped working on it in order to finish up Christmas gifts. I will add a scrappy red border and I'm not sure how I will quilt it but I'm mulling over a few ideas. I think I'll remove that large crochet flower with button center that sticks out like a sore thumb in the middle of the quilt and replace it with a few smaller crocheted flowers.
And here's a weird photo that makes it look like I have a design wall instead of a design floor. I took the photo from the other end of the one above this one and rotated it. So, here's my quilt from a different perspective.   Finished size will be about 56 x 66.  And this won't be a gift for anyone else but will be all mine. I rarely keep anything for myself but I don't think anyone else I know would even appreciate all the work that went into this so I'm not sharing.

Now I've signed on for CQJP 2013 and I will be making another lap quilt. In fact...I've already started on it because I'm so excited about it.

I'm linking up to Sharon Boggon's Pintangle blog for Work in Progress Wednesday. If you want to learn to crazy quilt that's definitely a blog you have to visit.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Three Christmas Gifts

I took advantage of some time off work to finish up a few lap quilts I'm giving for Christmas.  

Wednesday I did some hand embroidery between some Thursday dinner prep - pumpkin pies with crust from scratch. The pumpkin was from the garden.  Thursday morning I got the  broccoli au gratin (a tradition with broccoli from the garden), deviled eggs, candied sweet potatoes (kids don't like them but grandkids love them), sage dressing (sage from the garden and bread homemade) and mashed potatoes (potatoes from the garden) as well as the turkey ready for dinner with kids and their spouses and grandkids.  I always like Thanksgiving because we use cloth napkins and grandma's china and everyone goes around the table to say what they are thankful for. Even the little ones look forward to telling what they are thankful for which is usually family. And, of course I wish I would have remembered to take a family photo for the scrapbook...but I didn't. 

And, without further are the quilts I've finished hanging out on the clothesline soaking up that good outdoor smell. 

 "Attic Windows" is for my daughter and son-in-law who love the great outdoors. I used some real looking animal 6.5 inch charms I swapped with the I Spy Yahoo Group last year.  And one square is mushrooms since they are avid mushroom hunters also.

 I wasn't sure how to quilt it so it wouldn't take away from the 3-D window effect. I finally decided on invisible thread for the front and tan for the back and quilted in what I hope are straight lines. I don't see well enough to stitch entirely in the ditch and that measuring bar that comes with the walking foot doesn't work anymore with my walking foot because the plastic that holds it in broke off.  This was also my first time stitching with invisible thread even though I have a couple of spools in my thread drawer that I tried to use for some hand sewing that didn't work out. I also figured out what those little mesh things that come with the sewing machine are for - to put over the unruly invisible thread that kept getting caught on the spool spindle until I used the mesh thingy.
 The back of attic windows - a collage pattern of outdoorsy things.
 "Autumn with a Twist" is a lap quilt for one of my sisters and her husband.  She and her entire family of kids and grandkids come out every Christmas for dinner and we all play games like we did at Christmas when we were growing up.
 These blocks were from a swap on the Mailblocks Yahoo Group. For all participants you had to make one 12 inch block, two 6 inch blocks and six 3 inch blocks in fall colors with cream colored background.

I quilted it with freemotion pumpkins and leaves. I used cream colored thread for the front and variegated purple on the back. 

 "How Sweet You Are" is for one of my sons and his girlfriend. It is a bunch of Happy Blocks with sweet treat centers - candy, cupcakes, suckers, etc.

I quilted freemotion swirls. 

 And I used a soft flannel sheet on the back that I found at the thrift store for $2.50 to make it extra warm and cuddly for my sweeties and granddaughter when they watch TV or cuddle up with a good book.

You will find me at the Sew Darn Crafty linky party. Party on! 
I'm also linking up at Design Wall Monday at Patchwork Times (even tho' I don't have a design wall - just a design floor for now). And, finally, I'm linking up at Freemotion by the River. 

Sunday, November 18, 2012

There's a Hole in the Barn Door and other Tales from the Scrap Bag

 I've got two quilt tops ready for donation but won't be able to get to finishing them until the new year. I have some Christmas gifts to finish up first.  Last year I donated quilt blocks to Heartstrings Quilt Project  during their challenge and this year I will be sending quilts to both Wrap a Smile and Wrap Them in Love.  I have a lot of scraps so hope to make at least one quilt a month for donation just from scraps although I will have to buy some batting and probably some backing fabrics.
 Hole in the Barn door was made from some 6.5 inch blocks I had left over from some swaps on the I Spy Yahoo Group.  Some of the backgrounds were old calicos I've had around for a long time.
 You will find all sorts of things going on if you peep through that hole in the barn door.
 I especially like the disco frogs ;-)
 The other quilt top I've shown before as blocks. I have them sewn together now - string blocks with gray centers.
And those are the tales from the scrapbag.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Grandma's Sewing Room (Spools Block) - It's a Flimsy

I've hand sewn together all the points I didn't think met right, ripped off the border and added a think black inner border and now my UFO is a flimsy that I think will go back to being a UFO until after Christmas since I need to get some more Christmas gifts finished.

 And, this Grandma's sewing room (notice I don't have a "studio") is full of other things besides spools like jars of buttons, peanuts...

...jars of M and Ms and, I don't know if you can see them or not...but this Grandma even has a few spiders and spider webs in her sewing room.

I'm not sure of what to use for the back and was contemplating bow tie blocks made of black and sewing themed fabrics for the back to make it a reversible quilt but these look kind of blah but I could make a separate quilt out of them and maybe embroidery sewing related items in the center. Hmmm... decisions, decisions...

And since this is a UFO turned flimsy I'm linking up at Leah Day's Free Motion Quilting Project - UFO Sunday.    This is the second UFO I've been motivated to work on. And thanks to the UFO Sundays I've got one UFO finish (Spider Web Quilt)

I'm also linking up to Design Wall Monday at Patchwork Times. 

Friday, November 16, 2012

Telltale Hearts

I believe pieces...

...unite to make a whole...with a heart. I believe this is a quilt before the final stitch has been taken and a label attached.

Who are these women who want the right to silence the beating heart?  And after the silence do they hear the beating of the telltale heart?

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Looking for Fun and Feeling Groovy (and Nostalgic).

Remember the '70s? Long hair, no bra, flowers in your hair! 

 Did you drive a VW bug like I did? My first car - a 1969 VW beige beetle. Remember "slug a bug, no return"?
 Peace, love, and flowers...
 And even more peace, love and flowers.
 Happy block quilts aren't just for kids. This one is for my brother and sister-in-law for Christmas. Peace, baby. I'm feeling groovy. Can you dig it? I think they will think it lots of fun.

And the local thrift store had a perfect backing. It's been here in a pile for about 2 years waiting for the perfect quilt.

I have fond memories of the 70s. We had two children in the 70s, got married (yes, in that order), bought our first house (3 bedroom, 2 bath for $32,000.00) and lived in Florida at the time just a short walk from the beach. Ah, to be young again! (I still have long hair and prefer to go braless ;-)

Linking up to Linky Party Tuesday at Freemotion Quilting by the River. 

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Grandma's Sewing Room

The UFO I've been working on a little bit here and there for the last couple of weeks has been my spools quilt aka "Grandma's Sewing Room" .   I didn't have enough blocks to complete the top but now I'm glad to say I have a lap quilt flimsy.  Spools are 6.5 inch and all are red, black and aqua.  There's a few other blocks in this quilt so I don't want to show the entire flimsy just yet. 

Unfortunately, I'm my own quilt police. It bothers me when things don't come together quite right. I can live with a little wonky, but not much. This quilt is just for me and I know I will always look at it and know where the "bad spots" are.  So, I put a pin at those spots (see below) . I will rip and hand sew these spots back together again until it meets my own standards.

 And speaking of ripping...I added a border of sewing items. I've added the border to the two sides. I think I should have added a thin black border before I added the border seen here. So, I'm stalled for now.

I have to figure out how to quilt my Attic Windows now. I don't want to destroy the 3D effect. Any ideas??? 

Saturday, November 10, 2012

There's a Hole in the Barn Door and other Tales from the Stash Pile

Today I sewed on quilts for donation and am trying to use up scraps and stash.  Easily bored I switched back and forth between 3 different quilts.

I made 7 (13 to go) Hole in the Barn Door 12 inch blocks using some 6.5 inch squares I have on hand from various  I Spy type swaps.  These blocks will go to either Wrap a Smile or Wrap Them in Love. 

I also made 5 more crumby stars and...

...I also made 42 - 12 inch Rail Fence blocks (white, gray, blue)  from scraps and stash that I will probably assemble for the Hurricane Sandy quilt drive started by Victoria Findlay Wolf of Bumble Beans.  

Tomorrow I need to work on some Christmas gifts.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Feeling Crumby

As much as I want to follow along again with everyone quilting one of Bonnie Hunter's (Quiltville)  mysteries, I won't be participating this year. I still have the last two mysteries, Roll, Roll Cotton Boll and Orca Bay still sitting on my UFO table unquilted.  Instead I feel this urge to get rid of some scraps. Small scraps. String scraps. Really small scraps. Big scraps. Cute scraps. Ugly scraps. I really can't bring myself to waste anything, especially fabric (yes, I'm a hoarder).  So, instead of starting a new mystery which I will leave sitting unquilted for years I'm going to use that time I would have spent using scraps. And, the results will be donation quilts.  I have various places to send them now.  I wonder how many quilts I'll get finished and donated that are made from scraps.

Today's 4.5 inch crumb blocks - 20 of them. 
 And some crumb stars. 

Feeling crumby.

Linking up at Sew Many Ways...Sew Darn Crafty

Friday, November 2, 2012

CQJP November Block - Crazy Basket Case

 This is my November block for the Crazy Quilt Journal Project.  I have 7 blocks to go for a lap quilt.
 Oh, my blurry photos! hands seem to shake a little when I hold the camera... I added a basket charm with french knot flowers, some gathered gingham ribbon flowers, some leaves, some chain stitch...
 ...some feather stitches and lazy daisy stitches, some feather stitches and french knots...
 ...some feather stitches and pistil stitches, some polka dot ribbon and herringbone stitches.
And here are all my blocks so far pinned together. I put muslin in the blank spots. So...I just need to make some blocks to replace the muslin and need to make 5 blocks for another row down the side.  Then I'll piece some red and white crumbs for a little border.  

I've used primarily red and white, added one or two baskets to each block and tried to make each seam different. Oh, and I've made it all washable - its a lap quilt called Crazy Basket Case.  Crazy, huh?

And, it's time to register for CQJP 2013 now. And...I'll be making another lap quilt.  Can't wait to start.