Saturday, June 8, 2013

Saturday, June 8, 2013

And so you're wondering what I have gotten done in the two weeks since my last blog. Probably, your thinking, that it was lots, well that's not the case, unfortunately.

First I will apologize for the photo's. The computer turned the
 first two upside down and I can't figure out how to get the them back the right way.
And why the third one is correct is beyond me.

I was lucky enough to get two hexagon flowers sew onto the quilt. These are the new ones.

The blocks for the outside border of the mystery quilt are still in approximately the same stage as they were two weeks ago. I did get the small squares sew on the 2nd corner but they are not trimmed nor pressed yet.

The granddaughters quilts are all quilted, outside edge included. The binding strips are cut and sitting by the sewing machine so I can sew them together. What happened is another project got put "front and center" so the little girls quilts were put on a "back burner" for now.

Oh, and I know your are eager to see what the project is, right?

Well, my daughter Andra has decided that I need to put up a new "totally finished" quilt in the shop so she has designed, pieced, and hand quilted the centers of 10 blocks with those tiny little stitches of hers. Then she handed it over to me to Big Stitch in the framing that goes around each block. And the center block and border. Right now I am working on the framing strips.

And, as the cartoon at the movies used to say, "That's all folks!"

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Great news on the hand quilting saga for the granddaughters quilts.
I now have all the stars quilted in the outer border on both quilts. I love getting to that "next stage" on a project. Next goal is to hand quilt around their initials that I've put in a corner of the outside border, then I will quilt around the outside edge before I put the binding on.
Before we go any farther, I will confirm that the color in these pictures is pretty messed up.
Yeah, your right. Last week I told you that the 1st border was pink. It still is pink. Don't ask me why it turned out orange, nor why the outer border is such a dark blue. Must have something to do with all the cold rainy weather we have been having in Iowa. I even turned the furnace on for a bit this morning.
And I also got one more flower sewn on the hexagon top.

And last, and probably least, I finished up sewing the rest of the small squares on the lst corner of the tan squares. With a little more determination on my part, I am hoping to sew the rest of the navy square on the 2nd corner this week. Guess it shows that I would rather hand quilt than machine sew.
With that said. Check back next week and see how I'm coming along.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

    Good day (or night) to all.
 In looking back over the week I did see some accomplishment in the hand quilting department. I was able to get the quilting on the 1st border (small 2" and pink) completed. I quilted a line 1/4" on the inside and two lines at 1/4" & 3/8" on the outside. Considering it is a smaller size quilt it probably did not add up to much but I will take any progress as a good sign. 

Another small accomplishment was making and attaching one more hexagon flower.
And for my piecing project. I did get the 1st and 2nd borders on the quilt. Now the mystery quilt is complete.


I can't leave well enough alone and I have decided that I like the quilt. (Even after all my bad mouthing the directions.) So I now have to add a plain 3rd border and a pieced 4th border, to make the quilt large enough for my twin bed. Here is how my piecing is coming along. As you can see I have a bunch more sewing to do as each tan square get two small squares sewn on.
And remember, enjoy your hobby!  Jo

Saturday, May 11, 2013

   Hello to all,.I know, it's been a long time since I've posted anything, but I am hoping that this will be the first of many.

   So, what has Jo been doing in the meantime? Nothing comes to mind, of course. I always end up with a completely blank mind when ever I'm asked that question. I reviewed my pictures and found this one of the current hexagon quilt that I am actually working on.

I have a friend living in Montana (I'm in Iowa) and each month we make two sets of  small hexagon flowers that are exactly alike. Two to keep and two to exchange. The flowers are a center and one round, from there we each add another round using our own fabrics (I am using fabrics from my stash). Then we started putting them together for quilts. I am making my quilt like a traditional Grandmothers Flower Garden by putting the flowers together using neutal fabrics (two) for the path. My friend is using tone-on-tone fabrics for her second round and putting them together with little diamonds. I have to admit that her quilt is simply stunning.

Other than that, I'm hand quilting a couple of new quilts for some sweet little granddaughters in California. Sh-h-h-h-h-h-h, don't tell them because it's still a secret.

And I have been piecing a mystery quilt with the Dubuque IA guild. Wow! there were a lot of 4.5" squares and scads of 2.5" squares to cut, then sew into blocks, then put the blocks together. But that part is done and I have the first narrow 2" border sewn on. Next comes a 4" pieced border. I'll let you know next week how that's coming.

For now, remember to enjoy your quilting.  Jo

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Hand Stitching for the Week

Five weeks ago I joined with Kathy, from Kathy's Quilts, to blog about hand stitching. You know, it's all about slowing down our lives and enjoying the quiet time while we slowly make progress. It doesn't matter what kind of hand work you do, you just need to do some.

So my hand stitching for the week consisted of mostly hand quilting, my favorite thing. I was able to quilt 11 more print units, that's a total of 16 our of 56. I also quilted 2 background units, only 40 more of those to go. This is one of the yellow ones from this week.

 I didn't do much in the way of hexagons except to make one flower (3/4" hex's) and basted one 1" hex. It will be interesting to see what next week brings.

Enjoy your hand work.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Hand Stitching for the Week

Yes, I did get the binding sew on, then I was able to get the binding all hand turned, and today I sewed the label on. It is done! I named the quilt, "Oh My Stars! There Are Stars!" My daughter tells me I should be naming race horses instead of quilts. I think she is poking a bit of fun at my quilt names. This is it, folded in half and tossed over my platform rocker.
53" x 84"
After making some phone calls I found out the year was 2004 when a small group I was in decided to exchange the blocks. I feels so good getting another UFO box totally emptied.

Other than that, I was able to baste a few hexagons from scraps I consider too small to keep. Most are 3/4" hex's with a couple of 1" ones. They were added to the shoebox.
Then is was time to start quilting on my next quilt. I found out it had been pieced in 1992. Since then it has been hanging around on a hanger in one of the upstairs closets.
63" x 72"
It took me a few days to decide on the quilting design and thread colors. But I did get it started and have 5 of the print blocks quilted. I'm using a pretty matchy thread color to each block. I tried using more contrast in the thread but didn't like the first block that way so I took it out and started over. At this point it's OK. Maybe I will like it more, with more blocks done.
Remember the machine quilting you see is the basting. I have a long-armer baste my quilts for me. I take out her stitching as I go. Well, it's been a good, make that great, week. Enjoy the process.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

And Other Things

Besides hand quilting and working with hexagons I did accomplish getting the backing washed, cut and sewn together. I also got the binding cut, and I made a pillow case to go with the quilt. The main pillowcase fabric is the quilt background fabric, the accent is the binding fabric. It's all on a hanger together waiting for the quilt to be taken down from the shop design wall.

Boy, do I have a lot to learn about pictures and camera's. I understand the background fabric in the two pictures does not look like they are the same, but trust me, they are.

Hand Stitching for the Week

Of course I did not get as much done as I wanted, but isn't that always the case!

So, back to what I did get accomplished. Yes, I finished quilting the last few blocks in the quilt I was working on last week. Yes, I did get the out side edge completely quilted. The binding got made today so the goal is to get it machine sewn on and then I will start work on the hand turning part.

My other "setting" time last week was spent basting hexagons and sewing one flower together that will be added to Hex quilt top #1.

Scrappy Hex Quilt #1

Yes, I hate to admit it but I have enough started hexagon quilts in progress that I need to number them. This is my scrappy flowers. All seven fabrics in each flower are a different color, for example 7 different red,seven different yellows, or seven different blues, etc.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

New Quilt Top

It seems like forever since I actually started and finished a new quilt top in the same year! I've been working on UFO's for the last couple of years and starting something new was getting to be a real hankering. So my stars must have been in alignment as I decided last month to make a quilt out of a new magazine subscription I signed up for.

First about the magazine. Name is Modern Quilts Illustrated. It is written, illustrated and produced by Weeks Ringle and Bill Kerr at the Modern Quilt Studio in Oak Park, IL. I have seen several of their patterns in some of the other magazines and I have always liked them. I guess, because they use lots of squares and rectangles they suit me to a tea. I decided to use the first pattern in the magazine, it is called Stacks. Of course I could not follow the directions exactly so I made a couple of changes.

For fabrics, I pulled out a "why did I buy this" hunk of fabric from my stash to use as the starting point only.

 Then started pulling reds that would go with it. Then I pulled a pretty neutral from the shop. I have a hard time naming fabric colors but I'm going to call it a light butterscotch. (It always makes me hungrey for ice cream when I'm working on it.)

I should probably use the original fabric for the backing but I don't think I will. I may use it for the binding.

This is what I want to use for backing.
With all that said, here is the quilt.
Quilt size: 50" x 82"

In the next few days I will cut my back and get it ready, then cut the binding strips and label them. Then it all goes on a hanger until that "someday" in the future when I will find the time to hand quilt it, and that may take a while as I have two quilts at the longarmers waiting to get basted right now. I will say it was a lot of fun picking out and making this quilt all at one time. I need to do that more often.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Hand Stitching for the Week

My hand stitching for this week was more hand quilting. Last week I had just over half of the blocks quilted, this week I had 28 blocks left to quilt on Sunday morning. I quilted more yesterday and my total blocks left to quilt is now, just 6 blocks.

When I get those 6 blocks quilted, I will then quilt around the outside edge at 1/8" so that it will be under the binding. Years ago, when I was a new quilter, I read in the National Quilt Association magazine that if you wanted your binding to lay smooth you needed to quilt the outside edge just like you quilt the center of your quilt. It made sense to me so I have always taken the time to do it, too.