Thursday, August 16, 2018

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff

It's no secret that I like to make small blocks and big quilts. 

How about some 4 inch (finished) log cabin blocks for a 60 x 80 quilt. 

Julie made a call for all Log Cabin Loonies to join with her to make some of these cuties. So I have. 
You can see from her instructions that it takes 1.5, 2, 2.5, 3, 3.5, 4, 4.5 inch pieces x 1 inch.  Well, I just happen to have all those different scrap sizes sorted into bins EXCEPT for the 3 and 4 inch.  So, for all the scrap sizes I do have I just picked some and cut an inch off the end of each. I cut enough pieces for 20 blocks.  Then for the 1 x 3 and 1 x 4 inch pieces I cut a 1 inch piece off of something(s) from the scrap chunk bin and further cut those 3 and 4 inch pieces.   Clear as mud?  It works for me.  And now I have 20 blocks and am ready for Julie's link up for Log Cabin Loonies

And speaking of four inch (finished) blocks...I've made a few more for Gallimaufry which is inspired by a vintage (c. 1890) quilt.   Can you tell I was working with orange scraps? 

Now I have to leave unexpectedly for a few days. See you when I get back!  

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

I've Got Sunshine on a Cloudy Day


 Two Donation Quilt Tops

The first was inspired by Star Bright at Swim, Bike, Quilt.   but I changed it up a bit and used 6.5 squares so I could use what I have on hand and end up with a quilt 42 x 60. I also wanted to see how I liked a purple, gray, yellow color scheme. (I like it). 

 The second quilt came about because I was making blocks for Sunshine Online Quilt Guild's October Block Lotto. The theme is normally "Bright" in October; however, this year we are celebrating the 10 year anniversary of Tammy's reign as Block Lotto organizer so the theme is Sunshine. Many, many, many Block Lotto quilts have been donated to either of two projects Sunshine sponsors - Wrap-A-Smile  who partners with Rotaplast or Quilts Beyond Borders

Anyway,  I made some Sunshine themed blocks for the October Sunshine Block Lotto  plus I made some for myself to put into a quilt.  This one measures 40 x 60. 




And these are the blocks I'll be sending to Tammy for the October drawing. 

If you would like to join us at Sunshine (a MeWe group)  we would love to have you.  I don't really "talk" much but some ladies are pretty chatty. It's a fun group with some teasing whether you are chatty or shy like me.  We all have a common cause. 

We make quilts for Quilts Beyond Borders, a charity providing quilts to children (sometimes adults too) in under served areas of the world. I've seen quilts I've made and sent to Quilts Beyond Borders with children in orphanages in Ethiopia and Uganda and they have been sent to be distributed to Syrian refugees. 

We also make quilts for Wrap-a-Smile, a partner of Rotaplast .  They are "committed to helping children and families worldwide by eliminating the burden of cleft lip and/or palate, burn scarring, and other deformities. "  

Here's an excerpt from a letter about our quilts from a nurse who worked on several Rotaplast missions: 

"These hospitals we work in have NO linens at all, let alone on the OR tables or recovery rooms or wards. We use these quilts first to wrap each child in as they wait for surgery. It truly comforts them, no matter what age. Then, as they are moved to the OR, we use the quilt to cover them and keep them warm in surgery. This is actually critical to anesthesia and post-op healing. Warmth is critical!

At home we use electric warmers called Bear Huggers. On missions we use your quilts. But – we are very careful to protect the quilts from blood splashes during the IV start and surgery.
Then, as the patients are moved to recovery room, the quilts are a crucial part of the caring, medical equipment, and patient comfort. Again, if patients are not warmed, they do NOT do as well post-op. We cover them in PACU (recovery) again, being careful not to let blood or body fluids touch the beautiful quilts..."


So...I probably won't get these finished up until next year. I'm asking Santa for a roll of batting.  Meanwhile I'll keep on making tops from scraps as they happen.  I have about 8  donation quilt tops in the pile now. 

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

It's a Finish! All Tied Up





It's a Finish!
All Tied Up
(Bow Ties)
84 x 96
Tied and hand quilted

It's not really a quilt because there is no batting. This is what grandma called a "summer quilt". 

 I spent a couple of years making a few six inch bow tie blocks each month in the Rainbow Scrap Challenge color of the month. It took a couple of years to get enough 3.5 inch scraps to make enough for a large quilt. 
 I don't think there are any fabric repeats except for the neutrals.  I just randomly sewed blocks together trying to remember to keep a few blocks lighter in value toward the outside edges. 


 When I started out I was just going to tie the quilt with #10 crochet cotton.  I tied one row across at the corners of each square and decided I didn't like it, took out all the ties and started over after a good think. 

 So then I did some tying where bow ties intersect and where the blocks intersect. I used the same crochet cotton and stitched around the bow ties in the neutral areas. 

I used a flannel sheet from the thrift store on back and a variety of light to pastel floral fabrics for the binding. 
 The flannel was nice and soft and the perfect width. I hardly had any width to spare -- just the side seams had to be cut off. 
 It sure reminds me of grandma's summer quilts.  I think I'll put it on my bed now since it's summer and like grandma I'm without air conditioning but sometimes this time of year the nights start getting a little cooler.   I'm also going to use the vintage rose pillowcases I made years ago. 




for

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Little Boxes Made of Ticky Tacky

Little boxes on the hillside
Little boxes made of ticky tacky
Little boxes
Little boxes
Little boxes all the same
There's a green one and a pink one
And a blue one and a yellow one
And they're all made out of ticky tacky
And they all look just the same
--- Pete Seeger

Saturday, August 11, 2018

Orange 3.5 Inch Scraps


This week I dug into the Orange and Brown 3.5 inch scraps. 
That resulted in a few Snowballs with dark corners and a little strip. If a piece ends up to be less than a 3.5 inch square I sew those pieces into a strip. I used to throw them in the crumbs box but for awhile now I've been making some strips in the various sizes. I'll determine a use for them later. 

I normally make these little 3.5 inch Rail Fence blocks from the 1.5 inch scraps but I know there are only a couple of orange pieces in there so instead of cutting two 3.5 inch pieces off of a 1.5 scrap like usual I cut two 1.5 inch pieces off of the 3.5 inch scrap.   I do have lots of brown scraps in the 1.5 inch scrap bin so will make more brown rails when I get to those scraps. 

Friday, August 10, 2018

This Day

Give us this day our daily bread...check!

And thanks for the tomatoes...

 ...and the lettuce. 
But, Lord...this bacon just won't work!

Just having some fun. I don't have anything quilty for today. 

I've been making and stirring spaghetti sauce since before sunrise.  Most of the ingredients, including the herbs, came from our garden. 
And now I have the first batch in the canner and was thinking about dinner. 
Guess we can't have BLTs without edible bacon!


Thursday, August 9, 2018

Still Working on It

I've added four more 24 inch blocks to my collection. That means I have half the blocks I need for a quilt I'm calling Fractured Rainbows since I'm only using rainbow colors (plus muslin). 

The quilt is inspired by Denyse Schmidt's quilt Garden Mosaic. I see the link to the pattern no longer exists.  No matter...we really don't need it.

If you want to see what the quilt is supposed to look like then I will refer you to Sally's top which she already has together. She made hers with the "bat wing" method way. 

Gayle started us down this Totally Demented road.  She is the temptress that sent the link to me and Sally. Totally Demented is the name we lovingly use for the quilt composed of 2048 two inch HSTs.  


There is no method to my madness. 


Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Time for a Quickie


It's a flimsy!
It will be a donation quilt when finished. 

42 x 60



 Every once in awhile when I feel like I'm accomplishing little or nothing I feel a need for some instant gratification. 
So I dug through the orphans and parts to see if I could put together a quilt top. 

In the orphanage I found thirty-six 6 inch rail blocks cut from left over strips from a kaleidoscope quilt I finished in 2015. 

And in the Parts Department I found those six inch Broken Dishes blocks I made last month in order to empty a 3.5 HST bin. 

I added a few 1.5 inch strips all around...


...and a little bit of LOVE. 

And voila! 



Saturday, August 4, 2018

From Orange 2.5 Inch Scraps


 In past years I haven't really had that many scraps to play with when the Rainbow Scrap Challenge color rolled around to ORANGE.   This year I do have a lot of 2.5 inch orange scraps since I made a quilt that used a lot of it. 

So this month I dug into those 2.5 inch orange scraps and made a couple of ten inch Crazy Lady of the Lake blocks. 
 And I made a couple of orange eight inch Depression Blocks and three brown ones. I've been making these from scraps for a couple of years and I think I only need 5 or 6 more for a twin sized quilt. 
 I made a few sprouts.  I've also been making these for a few years and probably should take a count of them.  
And then I made a couple of these Whatchamacallit blocks.  The pieces are 1.5 x 2.5 so I usually use 1.5 inch scraps to make them but I looked ahead into my 1.5 inch scraps and found I only had two orange pieces in there so this month instead of using the 1.5 inch scraps to make these I used the 2.5. 

And while working with 2.5 inch scraps if any scrap gets smaller than a 2.5 inch square I sew them into a strip like on the right side.  


Then I saw that this month's Block Lotto block, a sixteen patch in California Poppy colors including orange, could be made of 2.5 inch scraps I whipped up four of those. 


And on break times I enjoyed watching all the butterflies that visited the orange Tithonia (Mexican Sunflower) in the flower garden. 

Thursday, August 2, 2018

It's a Finish! Salmagundi Road

 Salmagundi Road
89 x 89
Quilted on my DSM
 This was inspired by a vintage quilt.  
You can read about that and more on my previous post in April when I finished the top. 
 I just did some simple horizontal, vertical and diagonal line quilting following (for the most part) along the lines of some parts of the quilt. 
 It hasn't been washed and dried so it will get a little crinklier with shrinkage when that happens. I just have a wringer washer (I'm not complaining. I actually enjoy doing laundry) but it is difficult to get enough water out of it to put it in the dryer and I don't want to hang it on the line that wet so I'll take it  and several other large quilts to the laundromat one of these days. 

This is one I'll rotate and use on our bed. Our old farm house is mostly heated by a wood stove and sometimes that goes out on a cold winter night (again, not complaining...) so it's nice to hunker down under a pile of quilts when that happens. Of course then we never want to get out of bed and start the fire. 
I used the same fabric for the binding as I used for the sashing but I didn't have quite enough...

 ...so I grabbed a long scrap of a brown fabric from the 2.5 inch scrap bin. 

And the backing was a solid brown thrift store sheet.  A great bargain at $2.50. 

for 


Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Wooden Ships on the Water, Very Free and Easy


Wooden Ships
It's a flimsy
36 x 48


A few years ago...or was it last year?...I was making one block a month using the Rainbow Scrap Challenge color of the month for sails.  I got as far as seven blocks and then quit making them. I guess I stashed them away and forgot I was making them.  Anyway, a few weeks ago I found them and made the five blocks necessary to complete a top. 

I had the backing stored with the blocks so I wouldn't use it for something else.  Usually I find something for a backing only after I complete a top.   

I know a couple of people who will be grandparents soon so this will go to them when finished. 

And that's why getting this finished will be August's OMG (One Monthly Goal). 


Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Life is Good

 I've been machine quilting off and on for a few days.  

And I've been doing some gardening in between. 

Life is good. 

Monday, July 30, 2018

A Challenge


Emmetsburg Township, Palo Alto County Iowa Plat Map
W.W. Hixson Co.; 1930


Many of you may not know that I love genealogy as much as I love quilting and gardening. I've been researching and documenting my family history since before there was the internet as we know it or Ancestry.com. My research involved lots of letter writing and hand crank microfilm readers in library basements and prying info out of relatives at family reunions.   I've been entering records into a Family Tree Maker program since the first DOS version came out.   I also have several websites with document transcriptions I share with other researchers.  One of those sites is Palo Alto County, Iowa where I'm related to almost everyone there of Irish descent. 

My great grandfather, Michael Joynt eventually settled in Palo Alto County, Iowa after he emigrated from Galway, Ireland as a young man. His homestead certificate granting him land was signed by Ulysses S. Grant.  He married Bridget Brennan. Her family emigrated from Kilkenny, Ireland and settled first in Canada and later in Palo Alto County, Iowa. 


I like most challenges. They make me use my sluggish little gray cells. (I can almost feel those neurons and synapses moving and shaking). 


I don't make art quilts. I have no wall space for them.  So what to make...what to make...

I first thought to map a quilty family tree. But that's one of the big things already taking up that wall space I said I no longer have. 

Then I finally decided on a Plat Map. Which one? 
I decided on Emmetsburg Township, Palo Alto County, Iowa where my great grandfather and other relatives settled. And I decided on the year 1930 because that is the year my father was born.  So armed with a map and a huge kinship report from Family Tree Maker for my father I decided I would make a Plat Map Quilt. The areas where someone related to my Dad was living in 1930 will be in green. If family is unrelated then the area will be brown. I'm using earth tones, of course! (And scraps). 

There will be 36 blocks. At first I was going to make 8 inch blocks but that would result in a small 48 inch square quilt. But I like big quilts so went with 12 inch blocks.   I think I'm going to use muslin for the back and probably include printed pics and docs related to Emmetsburg Township and the land.   And if all goes well then I might also make a quilty 1908 Plat Map for the same township.
 So...here's section 28. The green shamrocks is where my great grandfather, Michael Joynt, settled and where my grandparents were living when my dad was born in 1930.   This land was in the family until recently. I was sad to see it sold but that is what my Dad, the youngest child, opted to do after all his siblings died.  I spent the summers there as a young girl and have some wonderful memories of grandparents, aunts and uncles. 
Section 33 which is south of section 28. 

 Section 21 north of section 28. 

And those three sections (out of 36) go together like this. 

More later!