Embroidery Playtime!

I have a very nice embroidery machine and hardly ever use it.  Those that do not have one and want one question why I do not incorporate embroidery into quilts, much less use it for embroidery.

This machine was a hand-me-down.  My Mother told me long ago I would inherit it upon her passing.  Between now and the time she said that, she has since upgraded and they would not give her much for her machine.  Her machine came with a 50 year warranty and is a very well made machine.

It seems like yesterday when she first got it and that was more than 20 years ago.  I have owned it about 4 years or more.  It was my go to machine for free motion quilting.  Now that I use my longarm, it’s job is strictly for the walking foot or heavy duty work like altering jeans.

A while ago while on pinterest I came across a lady on facebook who makes wonderful Singer Featherweight embroidered accessories for those machines.  Beautiful Work!  And it got me to thinking.  I have the 20 year old scanner for the PCI flash from 20 years ago that load into the machine, why could I not print off the singer decal pictures online and it digitize the logo?  I have everything to make this happen, except time.

Today I took the time to bring my idea full circle.  I see a featherweight accessory personalized in my sewing future.  Will it happen quickly?  No.  My guess estimate, it will happen within the year.

This week I will be working overtime, so I suspect all my sewing dreams will have to play out with eyelids closed.  I have worked hard this weekend to get everything ready for a grueling work week.  I have made supper easier for the week.  I am going to take it easy in the hobby dept, as I probably will want to sew, but will be too tired.  I will be very happy if it happens, but will also be glad to kick my feet up and get a bit of rest for my tired feet.

Here is what I stitched out.  Nothing fancy, and I purposely ran a bunch of stuff through the scanner to see how well the edge decal as well as the floral motif and logo would stitch out.  I look forward to this.  A project has made the list.

I used some rayon thread and because I stitched this out in their software it had much thread trimming which then fuzzed after cutting (my small trimming scissors is probably a tad dull).

Mom, what do you think?  Purty good for an old outdate piece of equipment, if I do say so myself.




Wedding Ring Block Tutorial! (jelly roll friendly)

Does this sound complicated to you?  If you said yes, did you know there is a friendly version?

When the phrase Wedding Ring Quilt is mentioned you think of curved and complicated seams of construction.  I have always wanted to try making one of THOSE quilts and have probably enough experience to do so, but at a much, much later date.  A screen capture of Pinterest wedding ring block.

wedding ring screen shot

Today’s focus will be on making the old fashioned version of this block.  This relies on accurate HSTs (half square triangles) and squares.  Choose the size of unit you are most comfortable.  Today’s tutorial is utilizing the 2 1/2 inch squares, but you could certainly go smaller or larger.

Tools required:

  • spray starch and pre ironed fabric
  • color way of neutral fabrics
  • color way of your assigned color fabrics (today I am using pinks)
  • Easy Angle ruler
  • rotary cutter
  • cutting mat
  • sewing machine
  • scissors
  • thread

What are we aiming for?  This is the block.

the finish


Starch and iron all fabrics you plan on using before any cutting.  After successful starch/ironing cut your strips to your desired width.  Mine are 2 1/2 inches

tools needed

Next lay a neutral face up and a pink face down directly on top of one another.

angle cutting on bias

Square up left edge (if you are right handed).  Notice my 2 1/2 inch strips are right at the 2 1/2 inch line.  Cut your bias edge with the line on the 2 1/2 inch mark.  (not any fabric showing from under that line, and not the line under the fabric, but resting on top of the fabric).  Cut.

anglecutting on bias repeat

Rotate your ruler and cut your 90 degree edge.  Flipping your ruler repeat this process down your strip set.  Set your triangle cuts aside for sewing.  For each block you will need 16 HSTs.  If you are going for a scrappy look, involve as much variety from your stash (or the store) as you can.  A two fabric only look for this block would be just a beautiful.

sew your hsts

Sew your paired cuts of neutral and pink feeding the flat side of the angle in.  This will prevent your machine from pushing a point into the machine and causing a nest of thread and a gob of frustration.

finger press remove dogear

Finger press your seam open and trim the dog ear.  Notice you only have one to trim!  That is the great thing about this Easy Angle Ruler, it is accurate, and it saves you yardage.  That extra dog ear you normally trim if making a full size quilt of nothing but HSTs would amount to vast yardage being thrown in the garbage and therefore not utilizing your fabric to it’s full cost.  That would be like buying a yard of fabric and throwing away an 1/8th of that yard!  Fabric is too expensive for me to do that!

This is a good time to take a measurement.  Make sure your 1/4 seam is a scant seam which allows for the thread bulk as well as the fabric to fold over itself.  After finger pressing, your HST should measure 2 1/2 inches square.  If it does not, adjust accordingly.  Success for this block will require an accurate scant seam.  If your block is larger, enlarge your seam allowance (or trim your block).  If your block measures smaller than 2 1/2 inches square, make your seam allowance smaller.

Remember you will need 16 HSTs, for this block, so you can either sew them all up or you can sew as you go.  I like to improv when doing scrappy quilts so I only sew a 4 patch at this point 4 times, but find your rhythm and proceed.

The block tutorial:

  • 4 four patch HST units
  • 5 neutral squares
  • 4 pink squares

Make an HST 4 patch.

make 16

Sew your 4 patch.  Pressing is tricky.  For two of your 4 patches you will press the top row toward the pink, and the bottom row toward the neutral.  This will create perfect nesting for the next step.

sew 2nd seam of 4 patch

When feeding the seams through your machine, the most ideal situation for perfectly nested seams, is to have the seam on top towards the presser foot.  So if things don’t go perfectly at the begining, the lip of the seam will wedge itself to the seam below and lock it into place providing the best nesting experience.   Two blocks will be pressed like this and two of the 4 patches will be pressed the opposite way to provide non bulky seams through the whole block.  Do you have to do it like this?  No.  If you prefer you can always do whatever you normally do, or you can press them open.  Whatever you like, it is your quilt, you are your own quilt police HA!

fingerpress and spin seams

The end result will be this.  Notice I have spun my centers.  This is ideal for your quilt.  It allows flatter seams and less bulk during quilting.  If you count the fabrics right there, the count is 12 layers.  No needle should have to sew that.  By spinning your seams, it will be less wear and tear on your machine, especially if you quilt it later.

repeat but press block in opposite direction from first

Repeat this 4 patch once exactly like you just made it, pressing and all.  Repeat this 2 more times but press in opposite directions.  This will enable you to spin the seams throughout the wedding ring block.

cut some scrappy squares

Cut some pink squares at 2 1/2 inches as well as some neutrals.  You can use the easy angle ruler for this as well, or use what ever ruler you are comfortable.  Make sure when cutting the line is ON the fabric.

press center blocks opposite 4 patches

Notice the direct of the HSTs.  They are pointing to a common point.  That will be close to center.  The edge on the right place a pink square between the 4 patches and then place a neutral opposite the pink.  sew that seam and notice both your 4 patches the seam is pressed to the right.  You will want to press your seam to the neutral.  This will allow for perfectly nested seams and allow you to spin your seams.

second seam in top half of block

Now sew the next seam to the squares.

finger press in on both seams

You now are almost halfway done!

Repeat all of this in a mirror image of what you have just sewn.

And now you are 75% done, the easy part is left.

line 5 center sewing

To complete this block you will need three neutral squares and two pink.  Notice their placement and chain piece them.  During chain piecing, sometimes I sew HSTs for the next block to keep threads utilized.

keep spinning those seams

Notice the finger pressing not perfect but manages to keep the seams spinning.  Just one more seam to go!

the finish

One last step, press.  Since you have finger pressed everything so far, it is a matter of laying the iron on the block and getting flat seams.  No distortion which creates a perfect square block.

And there you have it, the old fashioned version of the wedding ring block.  Your pinks make a ring in the center, and HSTs are nice facets around the perimeter.  If this was done in something shiny, it would sparkle like a diamond wedding ring, eh?  The block finished out at 10, 10 1/2 inches unfinished.

Three years ago I would have never attempted this block.  But after many successful quilts later using the Easy Angle Ruler, I am so on board!  For the quilt I am making, I will make a few pink blocks and a few green blocks.  There will be more colors in the quilt I am making, but I have not yet decided which colors.

This will go relatively fast if you have many strips precut and stack of HSTs already cut just ready to sew.  Sometimes I use the leader/ender technique while in the middle of this block, sewing for the next block, streamlining the process.

The reason this ruler works for me is, I do not like to be slowed down by drawing lines plus having extra tools lying about.  It is just cut and sew.  And that is what quilting is all about!

I hope my blog inspires and teaches.  Would you tackle this block?  Having the right tools helps.  I like the genius of this block in that I only have one measurement I constantly cut through the whole quilt.  No 1/8ths.  No drawing lines.  And it is jelly roll friendly.  Just in time for National Sew a Jelly Roll Day on Sept 21st, 2019!

Thank you for reading my blog!




Ready, Set, SEW!

Well, I am back on the sewing track!  All Aboard!  Trains have been mentioned in my blogs of late.  ….Referring to time chugging out of control.  After a bad migraine, and rested hands (which kinda drove me crazy….like to keep my hands busy), my sewing adventure continues.

people doing marathon
Photo by Snapwire on Pexels.com

I have a couple of finishes, and a start, and an in between.

I would first like to share the Stars Upon Thars 81 Patch quilt top.  I have it sewn and it is glorious!  It looks old fashioned, but with mostly new fabrics.  During the last couple of weeks making this work, I took notice that all of the blocks were sewn at very different times.  These 64 patch blocks had been started by hand, and then sewn some more with the same thread but by machine, and then sometime later sewn with much thinner thread (I presume polyester).  And now it is conjoined with my fabrics and thread, for a old fashioned, scrappy traditional looking quilt top.  I would like to take the time to thank all my readers and voters on social media who made this the best possible outcome.  Your votes counted, and thank you on helping me make that decision!

81patch hand stitching

We don’t ever look at the back of the work much, but I wanted to show how even some of the stitchings are.  And I see feed sack and shirtings, I wonder if this was started in the 40s when money was scarce and sewing machine factories figured out other means for manufacture.  Then I presume machine stitching happened after the war probably in the 50s when machines could be afforded on revolving debt.  These blocks have waited so long to become something.  And now 60+ years later, it is on its way to being done!

on the twin

Here it is, on the twin bed, which is much too small to show case all its glory!

on my couch

On the couch! still too big, but you get the picture.  I was very afraid that where I had trimmed the 81 patches to square things up, would make it look horrid.  But it kinda is lost with all the squares and their uniformity.  Far away you do not notice it, up close, yup, it sticks out like a sore thumb, but it is done!  I have only two star blocks left over that can be made into a hot pad or large potholder.  One was the yellow lady bug one that just did not work with the old look.

layoutAnd my tree one I cut the wrong way, so it is not in this.

not making the cut

I will have fun at a later time with these orphans.

And after completion of a big project leaves an emptiness in my sewing soul.  I had to start stitching, but what….

First I got out my Moda Scrap Bag, sewed a bunch of 3 inch strips with the idea of making a jelly roll race.  But the strips were cut with the grain, and were not 45 wide but only 36, and some shorter.  So I have a nice start to something to be finished in the future.  My plan is to sew some solids to each side and call it modern/minimalist.  Too be photo’d at a later time.

Still itching…..in checking the mail, got some correspondence junk mail from a quilting magazine that I used to subscribe too.  In their little packet of junk, there was inclosed a free Bonnie and Camille pattern, it was beautiful.  So beautiful in fact, that a new project is well on its way.  The pattern does not give the block a name, but after looking into my reference quilt block book, quickly found the name of the old block.  This is called the Wedding Ring.

Here is the start.  I have 4 pink blocks made with several in the works.  I am utilizing my skills that Bonnie Hunter has manage to connect and get into this quilters cranium.  I am utilizing some wild neutrals, and all shade of pink.  Some neutrals are a bit dark, but that is ok, I am using it up.  Much of these were scraps, and glad to have them into a piece that will eventually become something other than living dead in a tote LOL.

I have started on my greens, but have not made one yet, just pulled and starched fabrics.  My scraps all seem to gravitate to an olive green.  Glad to use those up.  Probably not the best color to go with the pink, but it will certainly make a statement.  In nature these two colors reside side by side in many flowers and greenery.  So out of the stash you go into something productive.

And if that wasn’t enough, I made a sewing kit for my purse.  This was a nice hand project using things about the house, not having to shop for a thing.

sewing kit

It doesn’t look like much.  It is about 4 inches by 1 1/2 inches.  I failed to use a fastener.  I am just using a rubber band.  It works!

sewing kit openned

You can see the wool helps hold the pins and needles.  The container itself is perfect for a small spool of thread, thimble, and a fold up scissors.

sewing kit conents

And I have managed some time on the longarm, doodling away.  Finding out that my one ruler I have, does not have a loopy small enough clamshell for the current design.  So ruler work is kinda at a loss for now.  I will be in search of a smaller arch.  My arch is so flat on these blocks it looks like a sloppily outlined a stitch in the ditch.  So major doodling for now.

My mother called to say she was done hand quilting a 100 by 110 quilt and it is soooooo beautiful.  And will be mine!  With its completion will come bragging rights to this blog.  Proud as a peacock, I am.


I have gotten much done, with a bit more to go, to get me through the monotony of the week, to the weekend excitement of sew-a-palooza.  I plan on stitching much, like a marathon.  It will require hydration and probably chocolate.  I can handle that.


Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog!


A Migraine!

It is not what you are thinking.  My project was not a headache, nor did it give me a headache.  But a massive headache happened.  One that allowed me to sleep, A LOT!

So, briefly, I made some achievements before it’s onset.  But I did not meet my goals.

Here is what I managed to get done before it hit.


All the vintage blocks that inspired these 81 patches, I now understand why their project was left unfished.  This was a lot of hard work, working all these different fabrics out of the stash.  I had to make several of these, and you get tired of getting new fabrics from the stash.  The good news is, I used alot of vintage prints.  The other good news is my 2 inch baggie leftovers now has only 3 squares left for something else one day.

Hopefully in the coming week I can marry my stars and 81 patches into a top.  If the headache passes, then it is sew on!

I did manage to play with bobbin lace late Sunday eve.  Made a bookmark.  It was not my first attempt.  I wound my paired bobbins all in different color sewing thread, and started practicing realizing that the thread was way too small for the grid I was using.  And a massive tangle happened….nightmare.  All that thread was discarded and I got out my Lizabeth tatting thread.  Worked well.  So this is my 3rd attempt.  I want to learn the torchon ground and rose ground stitches, but probably need to get a book for this.  I have latched onto some youtube channels that will help me with this journey as well.

And here is some ruler work that I did get to.  LOVED Ruler work!!!!!  I learned the key to ruler work is not so much the difficulty in using the ruler, it is what you put with those perfect arcs or straight lines.  When you fill them, it really makes a wow!

Here is my favorite, a chevron zig zag across the quilt and then filled in with ee’s and l’s.


Made a fishy.  Good to know I can do this, but was probably not good for a terrarium quilt top LOL.


I look forward to more of this mixed with free motion.


Imperfect as I was learning what no to do!  But perfect to donate.  I will need to bind this, but because it does not have a destination just yet, it will be put on the back burner.

Goals for the upcoming week:

  • Oil/Grease, de-fluff the featherweight
  • Sew the stars and 81 patches together to make a top
  • Practice more ruler work
  • Practice more bobbin lace

On a side note, back in November of last year, I purchased several cones of perma core thread from the thrift store.  I was pleased that I got a cone of white, teal, and burgundy.  I have used all three.  These threads are probably not mercerized and are very linty.  Except for the white one.  The lint was practically non existent with that thread.  And it gummed up my tension discs, eyelets and bobbin case area.  I could not figure this out.  I asked in forums if anyone had oil residue left on/in their quilting machines after using thread.

And then in researching thread (linen thread to be exact for using in bobbin lace), I found much of the linen thread out there is waxed.  This was a massive cone of waxed thread.  Not sure what this would be used for in the crafting world, but, the wax dampered the lint factor and would just pack it into the bobbin area on my machine.  I never had tension issues using this thread as it was self lubricating.  But now, I probably need to figure out a way to get the residue out.  I am hoping just a clean cloth with wipe it away.  It only took me 9 months on three quilts to figure out that this thread was not the correct thread to use for quilting.  So, I am out a dollar and it is now in the trash.  It resides in three quilts.  One of which was one I kept.  It did not affect fabric or quilting after many washings.  So all is good.

Here it is the weekend, and I am itchin’ to stitch but my mind will not cooperate.  Migraine be gone!

Thanks for reading my blog!  Have a headache remedy?  Please leave it in the comments section.  Have a great weekend!



In my last post, All Aboard!, I expressed my concern about how fast time is traveling by.  Locomotive fast, one day it is August, and the next September!  I blink a few times and the month is gone!

bridge clouds cloudy dark clouds
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

With the non-abundance of time in the continuum, I am relishing my extra day off.  Gosh I love labor day!  Thank you teamsters for making Labor day possible.  I realize if it was not for you, I would sure to be overworked by twice the hours and 1/2 the pay.

This weekend I set the following goals for the week:

  • Practice more with the versa tool
  • Research options for more rulers, for curves that perhaps are bigger with inside and outside curves.
  • Finish the 81 patches and sew the stars to have a completed top
  • Oil, grease, and clean my 221
  • Enjoy my extra day off, Happy Labor Day to me!  And to you too!

Two developments may have my plans derailed!

I sewed three more 81 patches, as I thought this would get all the stars incorporated, every other block.  Well, guess what, I think I had some of my pile in the other room, so the number stands at 7 more 81 patches, YIKES!  Eighty-one times 7 is a gob of pieces!  A gob of fabric being pulled from the stash, ironed, cut, and a few pieces used in each block.  This goal may or may not be successful, but I am on my way.  I am sew excited about this quilt, and how it will look once it is a top, curiosity has got me intrigued enough to keep me going through the thick of it.

I am enjoying my extra day off, and have had an idea percolating in my brain for a while, but never seem to kick the brain in gear at the right time to make it come to fruition.  When I am at the longarm, I lay by scissors down, or press the locker down to keep the machine from creeping, or lay the wound bobbins all the way across the garage on the bench.  And then I start stitching at the front of the machine go to clip my threads and have to walk all the way back around the other side because they are out of reach.  (I do have a retractable scissors and forget to put those on before I start so I have to walk around to the other side, regardless)

I decided long ago I needed to make a longarm caddy, but wherever I could carry that, it would probably be out of reach.  Then I got the idea, why not an apron.

Let’s back track a minute.  One of my goals is to research rulers for the quilting machine.  I was on pinterest viewing many samples of ruler work, and then all of a sudden in my feed showed up an apron.  The lightbulb of moments happened, the Longarm Apron was born.

This was a quick project of less than an hour.  And it will work wonderfully for me, as long as I load it up before I start work at the machine.  I love the cuteness and utilitarian/upcycle craftiness of it all.  Easy, fast, and will have much use.

denim apron

When I cut the rear pockets off my old wranglers, I left the rear part of the pocket in tact, in case I drop my scissors into them and that way I have an added layer of protection so they will not poke me.  The accent fabric I got a Hobby Lobby off the clearance for $2 per yard this spring.  I cut about 7 strips into 2 1/2 inch by width of fabric.  I sewed two together for the belt.  Pressed each raw edge to the middle, and then folded it one more time.  This will tie in the back, some of you skinny quilters could probably get by with tying it in the front.  The pleated ruffle is three strips, less part of that last trip.  I slowly pleated this as I sewed it, all this is, 2 1/2 inch wide fabric pressed in half, pleated to the right side of the denim, and then flipped to the wrong side and stitched down.  It is leaving plenty of raw edge and not really a finished edge on the inside.  I suppose as an afterthought I could have done that part differently.

I had to make sure to keep as much pocket power as possible, so I took the existing front pockets and pulled them outward while I was sewing because I did not want to turn an hour project into an hour of sewing, and a ripping session, with another hour of sewing.  I also did this for applying the rear pockets to the front.  You could dress this simple apron up and make it fancy.  You could even embroider on it sewing related/cooking related things.

I am pleased as punch how this turned out!

This was just derail number one.  Derail number two……for years I have wanted to learn the art of Bobbin Lace.  For those of you who are not familiar with this craft, this is how lace was made before the industrial revolution, it was all made by hand.  It is fascinating to watch, and now I have acquired some supplies that I may dally in this new hobby this week.  The internet is my teacher.  I look forward to sharing what I have made and it will probably be simple at first and gradually grow I hope into pieces I can put into a quilt block or doilies, or both!

Here is the magic, via youtube.  Look at her go!

I have the cookie pillow and the wooden bobbins (all free by the way via my card points and my rewards from work).  I never really wanted to be out that kind of money and then not like it.  So a bookmark may happen this week, we shall see.

And I have practiced more with the versa tool.  I will be practicing more, but it is a slow process that I want to be faster at.  I craved the speed so much I started ditching the ruler work for just free motion on the jelly roll race quilt I made using the Terrarium fabric line by Elizabeth Hartman.  I must say that I was not thrilled by the color scheme, but now that I am quilting it, it really pops.  The jelly roll was less than $20 (yes I watch my sales), and will probably be a donation as the backing was more $2 per yard fabric at Hobby Lobby.  I will have less than 30 dollars in this quilt, YES!


Continuous line stars, easy.funplay2

The first line of the quilt above is making m’s for the span of the strip.  Then I came back with my curved ruler, and made the rest of the heart, unintentional but worked well together.funplay3

Some leaves as well as some script, sleep well!funplay4

Pebbles is a lot of work and I do not recommend it if you are in a hurry for your project finish.  I certainly love the texture this gives, and since the line is terrarium, perfectly incorporated I do believe.

Hopefully I will be back at this soon.  Enjoying the days, I decide when to wake up, when to eat, what to sleep, no borders of alarms or deadlines of starts or stops, life is more fluid for me when I am off and have the freedom to chose what and when.  It is truly wonderful!

I am gearing up for National Sew a Jelly Roll day, that is coming this month.  So many projects, so little time.  Now I am off to give my little featherweight a day at the spa, she needs cleaned and oiled.  Perhaps I will add a bit of wax too to make her bling again.

…..almost time to go back to the grind.  Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog!

All Aboard!

Can you believe that August disappeared in a blink of an eye.  When I closed my eyes Saturday evening, and opened them it was Sunday and September.  Wholly toledo!  This year is chugging like a locomotive faster and faster.  All aboard!  Boarding now, September, lasting 31 days.  Next stop, October.

black and yellow train near green trees during daytime
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Before I know it, 2019 will be completely history!  The train has to slow down.  I cannot cram enough into my days.  I need more time, I feel like it is running out.

I recall the glory days of attending school.  The clock went ever so slow, and then after having children, they seem to suck up all of your time leaving you with scraps of time that does not allow anything to be accomplished.  For years, while at work, I would say aloud, “come on 4 o’clock!”  And then one day it hit me, I was wishing my life away.  The time continuum at work goes just as fast as time at home.  Every now and then I have a Friday that seems to creep.  I relish the creep days.  They used to be every day in my youth.  Now they are few and far between.

So how does this parlez into the quilting dept?  Well, you probably guessed that not much got accomplished.  I did not meet all of my goals.

My last post, I stated my goals as the following:

  • Stay cool~ these were the hottest days of the year.  Such a drain on my energy.  Not executed flawlessly, but ended on a lovely note.  Friday we had a cool front, cool enough to turn off the AC and let the fresh air and the 76 degree temperatures permeate the whole house.
  • Finish quilting the chandelier quilt….done!  It is officially quilted to death.qtd
  • Finish the 81 patches.  These are done with a couple of hitches.  First problem, after squaring them up they were so wonky that more than one row had to be added back and then re-trimmed.  Upon laying out of every other block of star and 81 patch I realized that I do not have enough 81 patches.  So even though I met the goal of the existing, I have to make 2 or three more.  This is a great task to pull so many fabrics to achieve a random look.  I am currently working those now.81 patches
  • Play with my new ruler base and ruler work on a quilt…..in the works.

During playtime with my new ruler mechanics, it is going to be quite the learning experience.  I have the versa tool from Handiquilter.  This ruler is small and probably designed for sit down machines.  The curves are small and hard to navigate on the outside loop to make clamshells.  I find it hard to keep to the ruler.  The machine is so heavy (which I usually quilt one handed anyway), but your arm tires more quickly because you are going slower.  I need to become ambidextrous to use both my arms to run the machine, but fear my left arm would be worse.  I am enjoying it, and it is very pleasing to make perfectly straight lines.

I did actually accomplish another project for the week but failed to take pictures.  A long time ago Nancy’s Notions sent me an order, and they sent the wrong fabric.  After contacting them, they told me to keep the fabric in error and they would just send out the right fabric.  The fabric that was wrong, was a double knit tshirt fabric.  Very nice fabric, but not for most of my projects.  While digging around looking for fabric to pull for the 41 patches, I came across it and made some diaper inserts.  All I did was rough cut 4 layers of this stuff pinned together and stitched with a knit stitch to secure it all together.  We needed new ones, had the stuff, took me less than an hour.  Done.  Utilitarian.  Me, very happy!  Made a small dent for other fabrics to move in (insert Cheshire cat smile).

This week has left me feeling a bit like a pincushion.  (Stick a pin in me and call my job done!)  Acquired at a local antique store.  Not sure if it is old, but I like it and the price is right.


My goals for the upcoming week:

  • Practice more with the versa tool
  • Research options for more rulers, for curves that perhaps are bigger with inside and outside curves.
  • Finish the 81 patches and sew the stars to have a completed top
  • Oil, grease, and clean my 221
  • Enjoy my extra day off, Happy Labor Day to me!  And to you too!

I hope you feel you have utilized your time wisely by reading my blog.  I appreciate all my readers, thank you!



81 Patch

This week was a whirlwind.  Refreshing to be so busy, but realizing there is not enough time in the day!

Work has been two timing me, can you believe that?  They expect twice the output, but still only give me one salary and no overtime or extra time to get it done!  I think I touched over 200 items in the last two weeks, building from start to finish.  Each day slinking closer to the due date, each day in disbelief that I will accomplish what is needed.  Each day taking lots of vitamin B to keep me a little less comatose, putting an extra bounce in each step.

The week has finally come to a close.  My energy depleted and so ready for my batteries to become more than just half charged.  Thank you weekend, I can really count on you.  You are there for me every week, always ready, here it comes!

My goals from last weekend’s post, I did not get to them in their entirety.  I am ok with that, as I am very close.

Goals from last week:

  • Stay cool (not perfectly executed, but good enough)
  • Take video of the Chandelier Quilt being quilted free motion style. (done)
  • Finish quilting the chandelier quilt (very close)
  • Start sewing a border for the Kaffe Fasset periwinkles quilt (done)

Here is the video:

Here are some pictures of the work in progress.  This is Quilted To Death…..some quilt more than this, but for me, this is the biggest quilting job I have done on my longarm.  I estimate I will have more than 6 but less than 8 hours.


This border is all I lack.  It will be feathers and am sooooo ready to try out my new ruler base and ruler!

You probably do not know this, but I walk to quilt.  Meaning, my machine is offsite, and walking is good for me.  When I walk, I see this odd tree root everyday.  This old tree’s root grew until it hit the sidewalk and then curved back into itself.  A freaky thing in nature, but oddities are what make life interesting, eh?

tree roots

The Kaffe Fasset Periwinkles, improv style!

periwinkles 2

And because I have no projects on my table now, I moved back to brainstorming about the Stars upon Thars quilt blocks with the 64 patch blocks.  I squared up those blocks, and they ended up being about two inches shy of star block size.  I got out some fabrics, and auditioned them to be used as a border sash around those blocks I squared up.  It looked horrible.  Then I thought perhaps I can shadow around two sides like an illusion quilt block.  Nope, the offset of the block just distracted the eye.  Then I thought I could make a scrappy border…then it hit me, just sew more squares on two sides of this block.  And that worked, and I will still have to trim these about an 1/8 of an inch.

I pulled some old fabrics from my stash that were already cut into squares, 6 and 4 inches.  I then cut them down to two inches.  The fabrics blend nicely.  This is way better than what my original idea.

81 patches

A stack of three done here, un-ironed.  These were kinda neat and has got me to thinking about possibilities with more of these in a different quilt with negative space in between.  Shoot, dreaming of something before I have this something done!  Whoa, pull in the reins, or else another UFO sighting!  LOL!

My goals for the upcoming week:

  • Stay Cool
  • Finish quilting Chandelier quilt
  • Finish the 81 patches
  • Start assemblage of the star and 81 patches
  • Play with my ruler base and ruler

Well, let’s see what life throws at me in the coming week.  I certainly hope it is more mundane than it has been.  Looking forward to Labor day and the three day weekend.  Can you believe that is only one week away?  Feeling better already……*sigh*

I’m off to relax and enjoy a different pace, have a great weekend and thank you for reading my blog!




Periwinkles Kaffe Fasset Style!

A neutral Kaffe Fasset quilt?  Nope….turns out, that is impossible!  The parchment jelly roll is finally consumed, purchased during a sale, impossibly matching anything.  Until I realized, it is not about matching, but about contrast.  A neutral solid against any Kaffe Fasset fabric is going to pop marvelously.


This started as a neutral Kaffe Fasset jelly roll.  It was kinda of blah.  It needed color.  And I enjoyed adding the different negative blocks to the ones I had already sewn.  Sadly, this was started back in Oct of 2018.  It sat on my work table, from then, through Ringo Lake, all the quilts bound (Qty 15).

So, by changing the negative space in the block and reversing it to the periwinkle, it added just the right pop of color.  What a difference!


As a quilter, I despise math and figuring out what size HSTs to make to go round as a border, hate it!  So to prevent my brain from overheating in the Texas High Temperatures, I just sewed what I had laying on my table.  I had many pieces cut from 5 inches to 3 1/4 inches.  Without measuring I just started sewing them together.  A scrappy border, easy, less going into the scrap bin or the trash too.  Then I added a strip of negative space.  And then what?


I still had all of these pieces of the Kaffe fabric.  So I continued on.  My first thought was to make a braid border.  But, because all my pieces were various sizes I scrapped that idea, and decided to make a seminole style border.  Since I do no like math, I made 4 seminole pieces sides, and then sewed some Kaffe fabric wild print on each end, some what centered it, and sewed this border to all 4 sides.

This left me back to bias edges.  I wanted to have a non-stretchy edge.  So another trip around the border with neutral negative space.

periwinkles 2

And again, this is un-ironed due to excessive 100 degree days.  The grass was very spikey and dry needing a drink of water which really makes the edges look wonky.  I still need to trim the corners of the last border.  This ended up being about a twin size,  across the narrow part of the bed, but the length is a bit short.  I have short people in the house so this will work fine for us.

I have surpassed one of my goals for the week.  My goal was to figure out something for the borders, and I got them all sewn, yes!

Now I will be off to get a video of quilting my Mom’s quilt currently on the frame.  I have been procrastinating just hoping for a 10 degree cooler day.  I guess I will just have to sweat.   There is probably no avoiding this…..

black close up dark dew
Photo by Francesco Ungaro on Pexels.com

on the longarm

Wiping my brow, and will work until the weekend.  Thank goodness for air conditioning and quilting!  May your week be comfortable!  And thank you for reading my blog!



And the winner is……

This week has been hot.  Much too hot.  How to stay cool on a hot day?  Have a nice southerly afternoon by eating watermelon and having a bowl of home made ice cream after supper.  Crank the AC way down, and enjoy it as much as possible.

A lot of pee-diddly-squat happened this week.  High temperatures do that to me, how about you?

I managed to quilt a bit more on Mom’s quilt.  Took a video of feathers on the border, and apparently I did not hit the RECORD button, can you believe that?  Tonight while uploading photos I went to upload the video, and it was not there.  I guess I pushed the wrong button.  This is still a goal and will do that the next time.  I am 3/4 done.  It is well on it’s way of being QTD, or quilted to death!  LOL

negative space fill

A few months back in talking with other quilty friends, someone asked if I had a chicken wire panto pattern.  I said no, but that doesn’t mean I can’t get one.  Pantos are rather expensive.  So I decided to make one using graph paper.  Got a pattern drawn out, and then got out the roll of freezer paper and traced, and traced, and traced.  Not sure how this will quilt out one day, but would be great for a jelly roll race quilt.  It will keep the quilt nice and lofty.

chicken wire pantograph

I will have to figure out the pattern on how to stitch, but I think I will have to back track a couple of times for a grouping of hexagons.  And no these scissors were not harmed in the making of this panto.  🙂

For months now I have had the Kaffe Fasset Periwinkles sitting on my work table.  They have constantly been in my way, nagging me to proceed.  Well, those are now a top.  I will probably create a strip border with some of the cuts I have still sitting on the table.  It is too hot to iron, so that will either wait until fall when it cools down, or on a rainy day, when the weather is not so danged hot.  Sorry for the wrinkles in my periwinkles!

And now, back to blog business….In my last few posts, I polled readers, and social media followers what layout they liked best.

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And the winner is…….every other block a star and a 49 patch!

49 patch

I will be trying to figure out how to get the multipatch squares the same size as the stars.  This will require a strip of scrap all the way around.  Probably a neutral of some kind or better yet, perhaps a brown.  (Or maybe I should stitch interfacing wrong sides togther, turn right side out and press onto a neutral square).

I would like to thank all of you for your input!!!  For a while there I thought it was going to be the 9 patch as corner stones in the sashing, but then many voted for this layout.  Those who commented thought these blocks would not get lost in assembly, meaning, you can see with your eye where one block starts and another stops.

Not sure if I will get out the iron this week and try to press these and set them a bit straighter, or if this was done during construction.  I do believe I will set them every other one, on point, so it looks like Falling Stars Upon Thars.

Goals for the upcoming week:

  1. Stay cool
  2. Take video of the Chandalier quilt during quilting and upload video
  3. Finish quilting Chandalier quilt
  4. Start sewing a border for the Kaffe Fasset Periwinkles

Enjoy summer, before you know it, it will vanish into fall.  My goodness time has flown by.  It seems like yesterday was New Years Day.  Time is passing far too quickly.  When one enjoys their days, it tends to go much quicker.  I must be doing a really good job with enjoyment lately.  Life is good.  🙂

Thank you for your comments, suggestions, and views.  Readers, it has been most enjoyable, may it continue, the enjoyment that is, for both of us!

Tatting Jewelry

Pinterest is poison to my pocket book.  Not only can you see eye candy for the quilter’s realm, but all sorts of other crafts.  I learned to tat a bit over a year ago and every now and then it is sooooo relaxing to just sit and tat (especially when it is 100 plus degrees outside).  I can sit and tat and not break a sweat.  I cannot say that for quilting this time of year.

I decided I wanted to tat a ring for my index finger.  I only wear one ring, it is 10k gold and was purchased for me by my aunt and uncle.  The money left over from my grandparents estate bought the ring.  It has a large amethyst (already knocked out the original and had it replaced for $10) surrounded by a blue sapphire and another smaller amethyst.  These are the birthstones of my grandparents and me.  I treasure this ring, and have worn it every day (minus the days getting the stone replaced) for the last 18 years.  The gold is starting to wear very thin.  All the work I do with my hands is slowly eroding it away.  That is life.

In deciding to make a ring from tatting, I played with an idea I saw on pinterest.  I tried it, and I failed.  I made it way to big and my chains made it not fit snuggly.

tatting ringa

Because this was made with number 10 thread, the measurement from chain to chain was too much for my finger, and both ends flared out like a skirt.  Too big.

tatting ringb

I will retry this again, but using the pattern I came up with at a later time.  I did have success with this.

tatting ring

If I would have made all my closed rings the same size I would have run into, the too big problem again, so one of the closed rings is smaller, and cleverly turned to the palm of my hand.

4 p 3 p 3 p 4 close ring

reverse work, chain 4 double stitches

reverse work

next ring would join the previous ring on the last picot.

4 (join) 3 p 3 p 4 close ring


the closed rings will be determined by your finger size.

The last ring will join the first and last picot.

4 (join) 3 p (join) 4 close ring

reverse work

and stitch 4 double stitches.

tie off your ends and stitch them into the previous work to hide the ends.  Snip ends and add a little fray chek or elmers glue.

Tatting got me to thinking, I could tat my threads around my gold ring to help preserve the gold band and keep it from wearing.  Wear the threads away and replace.

The only thing to get used to is not getting the ring wet.  Never wearing a cloth ring before I never thought about this, and will have to remember to remove it before I wash my hands.

Onto quilty stuff, the longarm is loaded and working a quilt for mom.  This pattern is called the chandelier pattern.  Her colors are beautiful!  And I am having fun quilting it.  Trying something new in all that negative space.  Not shown are the feather borders.

on the longarm

I am not halfway yet on this quilt, so perhaps I will get an upload to my youtube channel showing this technique with a camera tutorial.

Have a great week and thanks for reading my blog!