Tuesday, September 29, 2020

It's a Finish!

It's a finish! 
Four Patch Posies
50 x 60

I found this old UFO in a manila envelope in pieces and parts a few months ago. I had used three different fabrics and had some of the four patches made, some four patches cut and some sets of strips cut for more. I must have started it before I started blogging in 2009. One of the selvages had 2005 on it. At any rate it is (or was) one of my oldest UFOs. I finished up the top in August of this year. And now it is totally finished and well aged I guess. 

Now that it is getting cooler and I purchased a roll of batting I'm hoping to work on some hand and machine quilting and move some quilt tops to the finish line. This one was quilted on my DSM. This is the first time I have tried quilting "lemon peels" in each square so they sort of form a flower in each four patch posy. 

I think this will go into a "thinking of you" care package and sent off to someone I know who has been in the doldrums for awhile. Hopefully it will be a fun surprise and provide some comfort and a little smile. 

The binding and backing is sort of an olive green rose themed fabric. I've had it for awhile so thought it was time to put it to use. There was just enough of it so I guess it was meant to be. 

And on to the next! 


Saturday, September 26, 2020

3.5 Plus 2

For years my scraps have been stored mostly by width size (1.5, 2, 2.5, 3.5 and 3.5 and 4.5) and I have had a 16 quart bin for each size that has almost always been full of scraps. Each year as part of the Rainbow Scrap Challenge I have picked a block or two to work on for each bin using scraps in the color of the month. I have been working diligently to use up the scraps from each bin for years. Now I have emptied the 3.5 and 4.5 bins so I am not making any blocks using only that size of scrap. I almost have the 1.5 inch bin emptied. That leaves the 2 and 2.5 inch bins. 

Now I am mostly left with scrap chunks - pieces that are greater than 4.5 in width and less than a Fat Quarter (FQ).  (I do have boxes of strings and selvages and crumbs but that is a different story for a different time).

So that brings me to the title of this post --- 3.5 plus 2 and that equals the blocks you see in this post which are all made mostly from 3.5 inch and 2 inch pieces cut from my scrap chunks.  I figured if I'm going to cut a chunk I might as well spread it out between a lot of blocks. 

Flower Baskets

A few months ago I started making the Basket blocks you see above. I have been using all the 2 inch floral fabrics from my scrap bin and 3.5 inch and 2 inch fabrics cut from chunks. The basket is in the color of the month, the background is scrappy neutrals. Goal is to make a queen sized quilt with blocks set on point.

For the last several months I've been making Buckeye Beauty blocks from scrap chunks in the color of the month then paired up with men's shirts scraps or dark multi-color scraps. Again the pieces are 3.5 and 2 inches. The blocks finish at 6 inches. Goal is to make a twin sized quilt that will probably be donated or gifted. 

Last month I started making X+ blocks using 3.5 and 2 inch pieces. Here's this month's batch. Goal is to make a twin sized quilt. 

Last month I also started making Uneven Nine Patches. The centers are 3.5 inches and the sides are 2 inch pieces. The four corners don't have to match the center and the sides are neutral scraps. I've been trying to use up the last of my 2 inch scrap bin making these.  I'll see how many blocks I have at the end of next year before I decide size of quilt or quilts.  These will be made into donation quilts. 

After last month's RSC linky party for the color purple I made a couple of Antique Tile blocks to use up a few scraps I had left over from making other blocks just to see if I liked how they looked and to see if I liked to make them. I did so I added this now to the list of blocks I'm making from 3.5 plus 2 inch pieces. They finish at nine inches. I'll wait until the end of next year to decide the size of quilt. Again, these will probably be made into a donation quilt or quilts. I get to have the fun of making them. 

Another block I made after last month's purple linky party is the classic Propeller block. You guessed it...they are made from 3.5 plus 2 inch scraps. I have a lot of small gray tone on tone (TOT) pieces I'm going to use for the backgrounds. I decided the center square will be black scraps and the outer squares of the cross will be in reds. I see I need to fix the bottom center one. 

And finally I made a couple of Dove in the Window blocks from 3.5 plus 2 inch scraps. 

3.5 plus 2 = lots of blocks

Thursday, September 24, 2020

Enough Is Enough!

Well, I accomplished that goal (enough is enough) but didn't get any bonus points or a smiley face for getting them made into a top.  Maybe that will happen next month. 

I have also completed the crochet trim around 130 double sided squares. Woohoo...enough is enough!  These were made from 4.5 inch rose themed scraps. I used up numerous spools of pink #10 crochet cotton I have had in my stash for years. Most were picked up at the thrift store.  I purchased three more spools of a light pink to use to slip stitch these blocks together and to crochet a border all around. 

I recently made sixteen more 16 patch blocks from 2 inch scraps. That was all I needed to reach my goal of 130 blocks. (Once again, enough is enough!) I've been making these for a couple of years from actual scraps as a Rainbow Scrap Challenge project. Since I am trying to empty all my scrap bins and have been concentrating lately on the 2 inch scrap bin I figured I would finish up blocks for this project. 

Now one of these days I will randomly sew them together into a 10 x 13 layout for a quilt that measures 60 x 78. 

Indian Hatchet blocks
I've been using up 5 inch 30s reproduction scraps left over from making a not yet quilted Churn Dash quilt.  I made the corners with 2.5 inch scraps. 

Now I have my target goal of 252 blocks to be set 14 x 18.  (Guess what! Enough is enough!) I have not trimmed those flippy corners yet but when I do they will not go to waste but be used in another quilt. 

I saw Maggie (Making a Lather) making little 6 inch finished baskets from waste triangles that she saw Suzie making so I thought I would give them a try as a possibility for those trimmed flippy corners. 
They were okay but it seems most of my waste triangles come from trimming up 2.5 inch parts so it appeared that the base of the basket was a little too small. 

So I tried a couple more baskets using a bigger scrap for the base and 2.5 x 4.5 inch pieces for part of the block instead of sewing together two 2.5 inch pieces.  I liked these baskets a little better but it seemed like there was a lot of white space. 

Next I tried making the baskets with 2 inch background pieces instead of 2.5 inch pieces. I liked those a lot better so I made a couple of little nine patches to see how they would look as an alternate block. Well, that seemed like too much white again so...

 ...I made a couple of Hollow Nine Patch blocks to see how they look as an alternate block. I think I've started another quilt. 

Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Wandering Wednesday

Time to move off the beaten quilty path and into the garden. 

We are still harvesting lots of peppers. These are all different varieties of sweet peppers. My husband has pickled some, used some in canning spaghetti sauce and salsa, dried and ground some and we eat them fresh for lunch every day. Now we have been giving them away to family and friends. My sister-in-law came with one of her granddaughters to pick up a big paper grocery sack of them. Her granddaughter picked several of them out of the bag and ate them like apples while we were chatting.

The wild asters are in bloom.  They just appeared in the flower garden last year and were a pleasant surprise again this year. Since I didn't plant them I've probably pulled them out in the past thinking they were weeds. Since I've retired I've been studying native species including the leaves and stems so I can recognize things that just pop up here and there. 

It is finally cool enough during the day to see the Four O'clocks open. Despite their name they are temperature sensitive and not daylight sensitive so open when the temperatures are cooler. Usually during the summer they open in the late evening and close up in the early morning so I rarely get to see them open. 

The Japanese Anemones are blooming. 

I've tried separating and transplanting some of these but evidently they are happiest where they are.  They are basically growing in gravel along an old gravel drive now overgrown with grass that goes through the lean-to next to the barn. I planted two plants about 25 years ago. They are an Autumn delight. 

I'm still harvesting broccoli side shoots. These will be for broccoli cheese soup for supper tomorrow night along with some homemade sourdough bread. After the main head of broccoli is harvested a lot of side shoots appear for later harvest. I soak in salt water to lure out any little critters that may be hiding within. 

Yesterday's harvest included several Butternut Squash, Delicata Squash, Zucchini and some small cabbages. Usually my cabbages are really big heads but I think the hot temperatures and drought conditions had an adverse affect on them. The last several years I could use on head to fill a gallon jar to make sauerkraut. I probably won't make sauerkraut for hubby this year. 

Sweet Autumn Clematis is in bloom. It fills the air with a vanilla scent. I guess it can be invasive but I keep mine confined to the trellis and look forward to the blooms and sweet scent that is a sign that Summer is winding down and Autumn is near or is here.  It is time to start collecting seeds. More on that on the next Wandering Wednesday. 


Saturday, September 19, 2020

Red Two Inch Scrap Edition

It has been a busy month for me (unexpected and ongoing storm clean up of downed trees, garden harvest and preservation, family reunion camp out, and learning coach for grandkids) and of course I seem to have an overabundance of red scraps that need to make it into blocks. This week I used 2 inch scraps and made Single Wedding Rings that finish at 7.5 inches to add to the pile of blocks made this year and last year. Hopefully by year end the pile will be big enough for a big quilt. 

 I've also slowly been making Sixteen Patches from 2 inch scraps for a couple of years and will hopefully by year end have a big pile for a big quilt. 

Thursday, September 17, 2020

Life Is Like Ice Cream. Enjoy It Before It Melts.

Ice Cream Cones

It's a flimsy!

60 x 80

I was inspired by Cynthia's (Quilting is More Fun than Housework) Summer Treat quilt. I thought it would be fun to go through my fabrics in search of cone and ice cream possibilities. Oh, joy! I had some chocolate chip fabric and fabric with scoops of different flavors of ice creams.  I also found rainbow sherbet, lime sherbet with raspberry ripples, strawberry, chocolate and many other flavors. 

The alternate block was a ten inch Happy Block with ice cream cone centers. 

I used the trimmings from the "ice cream" corners (and then some) as sprinkles in the corners of the blocks. 

The background is peach ice cream. 

That was a fun exercise. I think it will make a fun donation quilt. 

 With the left over scraps I made some Sixteen Patches for my pile. 

Life is like ice cream. Enjoy it before it melts. - Unknown

Monday, September 7, 2020

Gone Camping

We will be camping for a week with some of my husband's family. He is one of eight siblings and supposedly five of his siblings and their spouses will be camping. Usually we have a camping family reunion earlier in the year and several generations attend but there were a lot of reasons why we didn't meet earlier this year. 

By the way, I've had those camping themed fabrics for years. Maybe it is time to make a quilt for the camper. Hmmm...uneven nine patch on point alternating with fabric squares? Economy block? Decisions. Decisions...

We were supposed to leave yesterday; however, we had another storm with high winds and rain that lasted from about 4 a.m. until 8:30 a.m.   This time only one tree fell and it was a big walnut tree that fell on the veggie garden. It crushed an old cattle gate I was using as a trellis for the Butternut squash but missed my Christmas Lima Bean pole that blew over last time.  We wanted to take out that walnut tree for a long time. It is one that grew wild and was too close to the garden and grape vines. Seems the trees always grow fastest when my husband has a medical problem that prevents him from getting out and about to help me keep the trees under control. 

 Black Walnuts remind me of my father-in-law. He loved black walnuts. The are very difficult to crack once the hulls have been removed. He would crack them and use them in cookies. He wasn't always careful about removing all the small pieces of walnut shells. I messed with black walnuts once and my hands were dyed brown for weeks. 

Sunday, September 6, 2020

What's In The Hoop?

Now that it is cooler I thought I should get something pin basted and in the hoop for hand quilting.  I decided on a smaller quilt (50 x 62.5)-- Peppermint Twist. I finished the top back in October 2018. 

 I pounced on some circles and big stitched in red on the lines and in white in between the lines. 
I think this might be too much quilting and I am thinking of ripping out the white stitching. Before I do that, though, I will mark and stitch another square like I was just thinking. If that looks okay then I will rip out the white on this one. And if it doesn't? Hmmmmm....

Saturday, September 5, 2020

Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weenies in Red

Red is the Rainbow Scrap Challenge (RSC) color of the month. This week I worked with 1.5 inch scraps and made some PSP20 (Postage Stamp Pandemic 2020) blocks...

...and four Double Irish Chain blocks...

...and 4 Plus Postage blocks...

...and 16 Wishing Rings with light corners. 

Rainbow Scrap Challenge (RSC) ScrapHappy Saturday