One Bound, one to go!

I can finally say that #FrolicQuilt is finished!  Got out today and took pictures.  I found a fence, had a devil of a time getting it to stay.  A passer by said it was beautiful, I am as proud as a peacock!

frolic finished

I chose the backing to use for binding, which was stripped floral fabric (very loud).  It adds to the already loud (smile).  It feels good to get this mystery done.

frolic backing

Some star quilting showing nicely in the high sun, which by the way today is almost the perfect day.  Temps in the low 50s this morning (with the windows open left a nice chill in the house) highs in the low to mid 70s, and the house is warmed to the perfect temp.

frolic quilted star

I finished it and then the next mystery starts, yeah Bonnie Hunter is starting another mystery.  Not sure if I am going to participate in this one, but I sure would like to do a red white and blue version of what she has in the mix.  It will be a medallion quilt.

A medallion quilt is on my bucket list.  The 365 quilt block challenge already is a medallion so, I will probably not participate.  Who knows what the future holds.

I am still binding the disappearing pinwheel basket quilt.  I think I am halfway done.  Will probably be able to finish it up tonight.

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I have the SewQuester Mystery Quilt pieces cut.  This was quite an undertaking.  The cutting itself was easy.  The digging through the stash not so much.

laundrybasket quilts

After digging out completely of my one large 50 gallon tote, I found some very complimentary neutral, and the piece was large enough.  For those of you quilters not getting out for a fabric run, we all thank you.  Odds are you have something in your stash, you just have to do the archeology dig to find it.  🙂 Me included!  This was an all day chore of finding something in the too heavy tote to move to the room where I was working, laying it against fabrics, seeing if there was enough and putting in in a maybe pile.  But then the perfect piece presented itself at the bottom of the tote.  Even though I have no idea the direction this mystery will take, I am trusting my quilting gut.  And to keep my baggies straight I have either labeled them with a marker, or I have pinned the fabric to the cutting step instruction completed.  I have totally taken over the kitchen table with this, and am just waiting for clue 3 to present itself.

In reading of the cutting I have done, I suspect we will be making 4 patches with color and neutrals and trimming them with another neutral, and then the strips we will be sewing and cutting using the tube ruler (which I do not have, but will use my companion angle just the same).

Today has been a productive day, I made chocolate chip cookies!  They will probably be snarfed down within 24 hours.  It has been a very long time since these cookies have seen my oven.

Tonight it is chicken on the grill meat removed and then smothered in BBQ sauce making a nice sandwich.  Tomorrow it is supposed to rain.  I hope to quilt tomorrow. My machine is at my parents.  I would feel horrible if they got sick because of me.  If I quilt tomorrow, I will not go into the house, perhaps have a conversation through the high tech doorbell thing.  I will wipe down the stuff I touch with alcohol, yeah I have a quart of this stuff and have had it for a long time.

Normal things taken for granted before, are not really American now.  If you go to the grocery store, no more bags to bring in.  They make you wait in a line to enter the store, staying at 6 foot marked intervals by tape.  You no longer have your freedom to move about.  And please if you get out, do not cough on anyone or anything, you could be charged with a terroristic thread, a Felony!

I am proud of American’s for behaving themselves.  Crime is at an all time low.  I have not heard of rioting over consumables like water and toilet paper.  Polluted cities have cleaner air.  Perhaps this was natures way of resetting things and teaching us how to better protect the environment.

Make the most of this time, as we are writing history now.

Happy sewing, and thanks for reading my blog!

Let the binding begin!

There is a gob of stitching going on right now in the realm of the internet.  I am glad to see people can still come together and do something.  I think this is a long lost art.  We only come together in bad times.  Perhaps this is an awakening.

Onto the quilty side of life, not much has been done here.  I did get frolic finished on the longarm, it is quilted.  My hobby allows me to stab something a million times, and it is not a crime, but is considered art!  When life gets tough, we therapeutically stitch.  Knit.  Sew.  Quilt.  Tat.  Hobby.  And that motor running on the machine I swear is part of my heartbeat now.  🙂

Because of my odd work schedule now, it appears stitching will only afford on the weekends.  So, I am going to try to bind two of my large quilts this week.  My poor middle finger that pushes the needle through the layers of binding seams is already sore.  I will be using the dreaded thimble.  Those of you that quilt, do you use a thimble?

I find the thimble a necessary device, but I cannot find one that fits.  The best one I have found is made by clover and is plastic.  It is open on one side, which allows for stretch because, apparently I have quite a large stub.  I really like to touch and feel, and with a thimble I cannot.  I feel clumsy.  It impedes me to hold the needle, and to pull the needle.

I have tried the adhesive pads with the metal.  Those work.  But after you use six of them up, you have to buy more.  I don’t like that part.  I am the type of person that once I make the purchase, I am stuck with it forever.

Let the binding begin!!!!

These are the two I have slated for the binding process.  I have already rounded one corner on frolic.  I am binding that with the backing fabric and chose to cut the binding to make the striped edge cut perpendicular to the stripes for a neat undulating affect on the very edge.  I am adding just a bit more noise and busy-ness to the quilt.

I showed a few people the quilt this weekend.  I had one person swear (the one who gave me the backing fabric.  She was mad that she gave the fabric away.  it is pretty fabric, she liked it very much).  And I had two more people ooo and aaahhh over the back too.  I guess I got the backing right LOL.

I am also going to bind the disappearing pinwheel quilt with the leftover from it’s backing.  One of these quilts is queen sized.  I think the other is full size.  This is going to be alot of stitching with the thimble on.

And the temperatures have finally started warming up.  Warming up enough that I will probably have to do all my stitching on my lap either early in the morning or late in the evening.

I saw where Danielle Stout from Cozy Quilt Designs is giving away a mystery quilt free pattern.  I think I may do this.  Her quilts are beautiful and thoughtful.  Very wise with fabric and templates.  And the pattern is free.  If you are interested in the Sew Quester quilt along, click here for step one.  And click here for step two.

My 356 blocks are getting further behind.  This year because of all the problems in the world, there are glitches.  People are not getting the pattern sent to them in the email as a subscriber.  I have not even checked mine.  I am too far behind to care if two days did not get sent.  I will catch up eventually.

TOGA was rescheduled for MAY.  I hope all this blows over so I can go.  I still need to work on those pinwheel blocks.

It has been a bit difficult to concentrate on things.  Focus has never been a problem.  But in the last two weeks, work suffered.  People talk.  People worry.  And misery loves company.  And then they say what they say, and then you kind of dwell on it.  And you worry enough about it, that no matter how hard you try, you cannot focus.  Your mind keeps that weird scenario going, like a bad dream.

Being by myself at work was a very good thing.  I could actually accomplish and was productive.  All the energy around me, feeding me really did create a problem.  Working this weird shift is not so bad.  I no longer have to get up with the alarm clock.  I either wake up on my own, or wake up because the children are up.  It is nice to drive to and from work and not feel so drained.  This is working for me.

What hasn’t worked is a laundry schedule.  Before I would wash a load or two during the week, and everyone else at the house would wash what needed to be washed while I was at work.  But now that I am home, the laundry facilities are usually full of everyone else’s laundry.  This is just a wrinkle and it will get ironed out.  🙂

Cooking is a bit more erratic.  I cook at 2:00 in the afternoon.  I make supper for the house, and then don’t even to make a meal for me.  Go to work, and then eat at 7ish.  I need to change that because I am not really eating much of a lunch because when I should be eating lunch I am in the shower!  It is just all weird right now.

I do have a long weekend ahead of me combining two weeks worth of weekends into one.  That is nice!

March came in like a lamb, and that probably means it will go out like a lion.  I dread Monday and Tuesday.  I hope no one is sick.  I hope there are no tornados, or car accidents.  I hope the whole extended family is hospital free and healthy.

The trees are leafing out, much has bloomed and the blooms morphed into leaves.  The winter wheat is amazing right now.  The rains we have had have really greened it up.  It is a lush green carpet you just want to take your shoes off and walk in it.  Soft and cool, green and alive.

The momma cat had babies, or I should say baby.  Only one Kitten, oh boy is that kitten going to be spoiled.  There are no favorites amongst 5 others babies, there is only one to choose from, and he is everyone’s favorite.  The right name is so close, but yet still to be determined.

I hear the cardinals, the robins, blue jays, squirrels, and for the last 15 years the night owl in the neighborhood who is really a mockingbird.  Yeah, he does his calls and starts this at about 4 a.m.  His call is really beautiful, and they do mock very well.  I recall a time that bird could make the sound of the chirp of the alarm on the car.  That was quite annoying at 4:00 a.m.  But he is a neighbor that I have grown used to.  I did not hear him for a couple of years.  As I write this, the door is open it is 1:46 a.m. and he is doing his calls.  I wonder where he was for those few years.  Kind of glad the old friend is back.

bird-nest-eggs-blue-158734.jpeg
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Well this old bird is busy with her nest.  I apologize in advance for upcoming infrequent posts.  Life is happening faster than the speed of life.  The blog is bound to suffer.  But let me tell you this, I enjoy my readers, your thoughts, your likes, you are the wind beneath my wings!  Thank you for stopping by and reading my blog.

The Bar is gone!

The little sewing that I did manage this week was on frolic.  I have half of the bottom border to quilt and half of the last half row.

My mom fell yesterday and broke her shoulder/arm.  She has already done this to the other arm this year.  Ladies, quilting can be dangerous.  If you have a large hoard of fabric, when you decide to sift through it make sure you are not alone.  She fell off the step stool and could not get up.  Laid there from just before 11:00 to past 3:00.  And the ambulance driver asked her if she sewed alot, my mom’s reply was, “You Think?”.  So her and Dad visited the hospital.  For those of you who are oblivious, they are doing “crowd” control at the hospital.  Only 1 visitor and you are escorted, in some instances, you are escorted by police.  Not because of anything you or yours have done wrong.  I figure the hospital stuff is all made in China and they are controlling potential looting before it is a realization.

I am going to work the graveyard shift at work to minimize my contact with the 6000 other pea-tree dishes that I work with.

This blog may go silent for awhile.

Sunday, I took the belly bar off my quilting machine.  I was always floating tops and only using the leader to keep my quilts square.  Two hex head screws and now it resides on the garage floor.  This may make camera access at a better position, for future youtube quilting videos.

Before, the belly bar.

good fortune

After belly bar removal.

bar removed

In looking at this photo, the portion of this hanging down, only half of it is left.  I am almost there

I lack one side from having this bound.

babyfgirltop

Because the weeks to come are so sketch, You may or may not see any progress on my blog.

I am looking at getting the “circle thingy” it is kind of a hartley fence for the quilting machine.  For those of you who do not know what this is, I am including a video that shows it.  Basically it is a gyro spiro-graph like attachment for the machine.

Mine will make spiral circles, if I get it.

Toodles, and thank you for reading my blog!

Life is short

Life is full of anxiety right now.  It is much like going through a divorce and not knowing your wack-job spouses next move.

Abundance is prepping.

………….and for some a sin called gluttony.   For those of you who have toilet paper check to see where it is made.  For years I was under the assumption it was made by Kimberly-Clark here in the states.  But after toilet paper-gate, if you read the package, it is made in China!  No wonder there is a shortage.  Thanks congress and NAFTA!

I presume everything is a month out, meaning the ports where Chinese shipping containers once were never ending, are completely empty.

If you live in the States, you are rabbits down the hole, waiting for this Alice in Wonderland scenario to stop.

Due to the demands of my job, I am working.  For those of you who read this and think, oh she is so lucky, think again.  I work in a plant with 6000 other people and we were all told to continue to show up for work.  So I go to work waiting for the announcement that I will have to go into quartantine.

My anxiety is high.  I am a home body, and work has always been a necessary evil.  But now it is like a double edged sword.  There is always the reality that a family member can be taken from me, and you dwell and worry to yourself.

I assume anger will be the next emotion.  My employer constantly puts out emails stating “our employees health and safety are important to us”.  I decipher this  as, My 401k stipend on my ceo salary has fallen in huge numbers.  Since part of my pay is through stock dividends, I must keep them up.  By keeping the numbers up, I am therefore, personally, more valuable.  By keeping them working, I will still have a job so I can pay for the jaguar and the million dollar home.

For those of you without money problems, now is the time to invest.  I foresee oil a great place to start since there is so much overproduction right now.  A little economics class in high school taught me about the law of supply and demand.

Now is also the time to place hedge bets against companies.  Those who were weak before this, will go belly up in less than a month.  I foresee JC Penny saying good bye.  Who do you think will tank?  Walmart?  They rely too heavily on China.

Because it is so hard for me to focus/concentrate, minimal sewing happened this week.  I was kind of down that I am continuing to work, potentially incubating and spreading for two counties that I work and live in.

I am uncertain if you would consider this a rant?  Whatever you want to call it, it is what it is.

toilet paper roll on ceramic plate
Photo by Vlada Karpovich on Pexels.com

 

 

 

Zero, Zip, Nada

Well, as my last post stated I was torn about attending the Dallas Quilt Show.  The mayor called the show off at 11:59 p.m. after all the vendors and quilt displays were set up and ready for the quilt pilgrimage.  All of those involved, what a disappointment.

I am disappointed but I will see many quilt shows in my lifetime.  I understand.  I wish they would have called it off earlier on Thursday so those setting up would not have been out so much effort.

So, Friday on my way home from work, I thought I would support my LAQS and stop in to show my support.  They were silver sponsors of the event.  And they were mad.  And the shop is usually a calm tranquil, quite place.  Because they were working towards unpacking everything they had set up and their frustration was on the high side, it was loud, and angry.  And I understand.  I felt sorry for them as they had cut a bunch of fat quarters that would sell there, but they were trying to find places for them in their shop.

No raffle at the show, no pamphlets to give out (can you imaging just the expense of printing the pamphlets?), no added tax revenue, no best of show, no quilters eye candy, no fabric to pet, no quilting machines to play with, no featherweight booth to visit.  I am uncertain how much revenue the Dallas Quilt Guild brings in for just themselves, this will hurt their coffers.

I am kind of glad that I chose not to put one of my quilts in the show.  I now forget the theme of the show, but the quilt was perfect for it.  Stars upon Thars was a no show.  I would have put me out a bunch of effort, and I just could not see myself doing it so far away.  I think something closer appeals to me more.  This decision little did I know was for the best.

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So, let me get out of the Zero, Zip, Nada attitude and show you some good ole quilter info and quilt tops.

As promised, here are the three tops I made in the past week.  One is at the binding stage.

babyfgirltop

One is at the top stage, but needs pressed.  Jelly Roll terrarium by Elizabeth Hartman.

eliz hartman

And one top is pressed ready for backing selection.  Flight by moda fabrics.

flight

Goals for the upcoming week:

  • Finish quilting Frolic (if you didn’t catch my videos posted on how I am quilting each section, please visit my youtube channel and get up to date videos to help you quilt your #FrolicQuilt)
  • Finish hand sewing the binding on the dusty rose baby quilt
  • Find a suitable backing for the blue HST quilt
  • Quilt the HST quilt
  • Blog about quilt lighting for longarms and how to deal with leg ache
  • Purchase fabric for this yellow jelly roll race quilt

jrrbaby

Life seems to be at a cusp right now.  The normal eb and flow is getting disrupted.  I think life is going to be interesting in the coming weeks.  Things you thought would never happen probably will.  I seem to be anxious about it all, but will refrain from being too worried.  If I have ever learned anything in my 40 plus years, it is that worrying gets you no where.  I will cross the bridge as I come to it.  I will become smarter because of it, and if my grandparents can eat onion soup for all their meals 2 weeks straight and live to tell about it, so can I.  My big girl panties are on, if only I had more toilet paper.  HA!

Thanks for stopping in and reading my blog!

 

Let the Quilting of Frolic Commence!

My daffodils bloomed beautifully.  Their gnarled blooms almost look normal this year.

mydaffodils

And here are Mom’s daffodils.

moms dafodills

Been a productive week, this is going to be a big post.

I got the center medallion made, turned out great, and enjoyed the bigger pieces.  365 is on the back burner until further notice.  I will have no trouble of catching up as needed.

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Made a baby quilt, sewed two charm packs together and to make a long story short, I need to bind, tis almost ready.  Want to see a quilting video Free Motion?  Click the link to see the machine in action.  

It was nice to get this out of my stash, and to get rid of this dated dusty rose I reckon from the 1980s.  *Disclaimer* it has only been in my stash 2 years.  🙂

I sewed another jelly roll race, not pictured, and aim to have it done soon too!

Started another baby quilt, am still piecing this one and it will reveal itself as a top hopefully this weekend.  A gob of manic sewing!

And I got the itch to quilt.  Got it so bad, that I just pieced some backing.  It ended up being two pieces sewn at the selvages and then I was just short a few inches in length, so I added a strip of pink.  The backing is loud, but complimentary of the top.  Let the quilting of Frolic commence!!!

frolic backing

I have uploaded videos of how I am quilting each design.  I have one for the borders, one for the star and one for the secondary block.  I am about halfway done, quilting a bit each night.

Here are the closeups of the ruler work and free motion.

frolic starfrolicborder

The Dallas Quilt Show commences this weekend.  I Have my ticket purchased, but am weary about going with all the COVID-19 speak.  I am not afraid of the flu, I am afraid of bringing it home to my loved ones.  I was planning for Sunday, still thinking.  I will re-evaluate the situation when the time is here, nothing to worry about now.   I want to pet pretty fabrics, and have a craving for replenishing the stash.    The weekend is almost here, and after a week of this dang daylight savings, my biological clock wants normalcy and to sleep a tad longer.

Overtime has been announced, so I suspect the crickets will be chirping in my next post as I will have nothing to show.  I will get something for your quilting eyes to feast themselves upon.  Until then, thanks for stopping in and reading my blog!

Lamb Light

Each week when I write my post, I have to come up with a title.  This little task can be a struggle.  Today’s two words represent the week marvelously!

OMG, it is March already!  It came in like a lamb, and as the saying goes, it will go out like a lion.  This little algorithm in nature is pretty accurate.  Where does this saying come from?

This is a pagan belief about balance.  And here is a quote from Farmer’s Almanac:

Those people often believed that bad spirits could affect the weather adversely, so they were cautious as to what they did or did not do in certain situations.

Those beliefs often included ideas that there should be a balance in weather and life. So, if a month came in bad (roaring like a lion), it should go out good and calm (docile, like a lamb)

So pagan belief was much like Karma as I read.  I am not pagan by any means, but I do believe what you put out there is what you get back.  I see too many people become victims of Karma.  What can I say?   The ancestors were wise.

Steering to the quilting corner now, the teaching is over, LOL.  My goals for the week are met and exceeded!  My goal was to work atleast 2 weeks worth of blocks for the 365 challenge, catching up.  I am now on the start of the center medallion.  Which is the last three days of Feb.  I sewed almost a months worth of blocks!  I am still behind, but am not quite so far in the hole!

365a

A sampling!  With more pictures to follow.

I had decided to show you the process I go through making each block at 3 1/2 inches.  Some blocks like the one in the lower left have much more work and preparation.

First I start by petting the fabrics and see what I can come up with.  The pattern may call for Dark, Dark Dark, Medium, Medium Dark.  This is the tricky part.

theprocess-fabric selection

I selected my fabrics.  My mom graciously made me some alphabit-ies, which keep the confusion to a minimum.  I mean who knew 3 1/2 inch blocks could have so many fabrics and pieces that you could get confused?

After fabric selection and alphabitie assignment, I then cut my BOM for the block.

theprocess-cut

subcuts

Sometimes I re-write the BOM instructions because of the rulers I have making my HSTs accurate.  Or sometimes subcutting happens according to the directions.  Then a seam and some finger pressing.

sewn and finger pressed

I never iron until the block is complete.  These two HSTs look wonky, but it is an optical illusion.  The flaps are just closer to the camera since I finger pressed to the dark side.

spin those seams

Those two HSTs came together for a diagonal cut and two more seams and became two QSTs.  In making these blocks the tip I have taken from quilting is spinning the seams.  When the back of this block is all seams, spinning those seams is wise!  There are no pressing instructions, so you go with your gut.  Press to the dark side and spin those seams.

miniture blocks come together

All miniature blocks then are checked for accuracy and cut to instructional dimension.  It starts to come together.  And now the 9 patch appears!

9 patch

And finally the block cometh together!  A press with the iron, and then a overall size check on the mat.  Sometimes, another trim happens to make the block 3 1/2 inches true.

And before you know it, you have lots of little blocks with many pieces.  Not all blocks are created equally either.  Some of these 3 1/2 inch squares have more than 30 pieces.  That is why this is called a challenge, and I am loving every block.  Nice to have a simple one, and nice to have a challenging one.

many blocksmore blocks

Now, let us go back to the title of this post for a bit.  Light is the keyword.  This word is used highly in patterns for quilting, the 365 block challenge is no exception.  Light represents value and color and is an integral part of my hobby.

This is also an integral part of life itself.  This weekend is the dreaded daylight savings!!!!!  In life the friggin’ time continuum loses an hour.  The older I get, the more frantic I feel.  That one stinkin’ hour lost, takes me weeks to to find peace with the bastard called time.  I am hungry an hour earlier for every meal.  I have to get up earlier everyday.  But because my internal clock is still on old time, going to bed earlier does not compute.  This fragment of time each year is something I dread and will never get used to.  Here it is again….

And some spring time news from my front yard, the daffodils made it!  Blooms happened!

My goals for the upcoming week:

  • Go to the Dallas Quilt Show (will I see you there?)
  • try out the tripod I got for the quilting machine and the video camera
  • try out the anti-fatigue mat I got for the quilting machine
  • start piecing 2 baby quilt tops and hopefully have these finished
  • sew the center medaillion for the 365 block challenge
  • quilt one of the baby quilt tops I have on hand or better yet one that I starting to piece
  • Make reservations for hotel accomodations for TOGA this year!

This is quite the list for someone whose ass will be dragging due to the time change.  Will I make it?  We shall see…..

Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog!