Friday, October 31, 2014

October Quilt Update

Previous 2014 posts:  First of year quilt update  (There are individual class posts for 4 Bonnie Hunter classes as well if you click on Feeling Crafty label and go to older posts.)
                         End of January quilt update
                         February quilt update
                         March Quilt Update
                         April Quilt Update
                         May Quilt Update
                         June Quilt Update
                         July Quilt Update
                          August Quilt Update
                         September Quilt Update

Goals:  I may be in Telluride to see my daughter and son-in-law's new dental practice and home so once again I need to be careful here.  Finally got a screaming deal on some batting -- 45 yds for $150.00.  woot woot --- time to quilt.

Roll Quilt -
UFO - Ceramic Tea Set -
Sandwich, Quilt, and bind both Celtic Solstice (CS) quilts  - yes
Sandwich, quilt, and bind Old Kentucky Album (OKA) quilt - yes
Sandwich, quilt, and bind Jacob's Log Cabin (LC) quilt - yes
Mark Sew Squared (SS) and Peaceful Paisley (PP) quilts -
Sandwich, quilt, and bind Lazy Sunday (LS) quilt -
Remainder of spool doilies for retreat -
Work on bookmarks - yes
Crochet hats - yes
Round Robin (RR) row finished, attached, and in mail - yes
Set My Favorite Things (MFT) top - yes
Pull Fabrics for new mystery quilt - (Grand Illusion or GI) - yes

1st -  It's October!  Oh my goodness.  I literally blew off last month and really need to regroup if I am going to finish what I set out to do this year.  Today is my LAST lazy day and so I bask in it and finish book 7 of the Harry Potter series.  Whew -- that is behind me now.  Since it would be way too much to make an entire switch in one day and actually sew something, I opt to work on the Monthly Blog Update from September so that it can post.  Okay, I think I am ready now.  Let's see what one determined redhead can accomplish this month.  Do you feel the cheerleader in me?  Someone's gotta spur me on.

2nd - First thing this morning I make a "Get on Track" schedule for both quilting and the dang house,  I have absolute need for this as I feel so much better when I can see what needs to be done each day.  Here we go.  I am off to the studio and quilt 2 quadrants CS I before realizing that a couple of weeks away certainly makes a difference on the arms.  I am beat so head back into the house and cut strips for my RR blocks.  That's a good start for the month AND I was able to check off all that I planned for today.  Yes indeed, I am pretty hot stuff (cheerleading continuing).

3rd - I head out to the studio first thing and quilt the last quadrant of CS I - oh yeah - doing the happy dance here. After a hunt for a blue that will work, I make and attach the binding to it.  Oh my, I love it so very much.  Look at this!  I made this and am in shock every single time I look at it.  I know you have heard this before but it is true each and every time.  The amount of growth that has come with it is so vast as well.  "Oh stop drooling girl, you still have things on your list to do today."

There is a package at the door and my batiks have arrived!  Oh are they not ever so beautiful?  I am ready to finish cutting for my RR row.  Let the fun continue.  Once the strips are finished and my checkmark made, I move on to the last item for today.  I must sandwich the LC quilt.  This birthday is getting closer and closer.  Mission accomplished.  I am beat but feeling very productive.

4th - It's the weekend and I am spending it with my sweetie.  Now that he is working outside the home, we don't get to spend as much time together so I have opted to have my sewing put away when he gets home in the evenings AND keep the weekend pretty much fabric free as well.  After a nice walk at the lake, I do sit down and hand stitch the binding down on CS I leaving me just threads to bury.  I need to figure out a better way to do that part as I absolutely detest doing it.  Grrr.

5th - Today is a family day - soccer games for Bekah in Arlington and then a birthday visit to Mister's brother in Grapevine.  We all need days like this and sometimes I think we let too many other things get in the way of these fleeting moments.  It's been a nice weekend and I am ready to work again.

6th - First thing today is a household chore -- laundry.  Once it is sorted and started, I am off to the studio to quilt 2 quadrants on LC and guess what?  It goes so well that I just go ahead and finish the whole thing and bring it into the house to trim,  Fist pump.  I am rocking it today.

In between loads of laundry, I finish cutting for the RR and sandwich OKA but don't have it basted yet.  My evening is spent grocery shopping.  If I am going to rock the house as well, I need food to cook and this place is really low on supplies.  Two hours later, I am back and so tired that I only put away the refrigerated items and head to bed with Mister.  These early morning and very productive days are kicking my butt - it's only 9:00.

7th - First things first.  I have determined that I need to have a quilt on the machine for quilting at all times.  There are just way too many tops laying around that need to be finished and so first thing I pin baste OKA, fill bobbins, and put it on the machine ready to go.  Next, I make the binding for both OKA and LC, do the necessary ironing from yesterdays laundry while I have the iron out (ugh), sew the binding on LC, and get 4 RR blocks ready to weave, While watching a show in the evening with Mister, I start hand stitching binding down on LC but quickly give up as again, I am tired and literally not in the mood to sew.  How often does that happen?


8th - Today's mission - should I choose to accept it - is to finish 4 RR blocks.  That will leave me with 10 to go and I am hoping for 2 a day.  Fingers crossed.  I am doing Bonnie Hunter's Big Bang block from Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks Volume 6.  I do get the four blocks finished - 2 of each colorway and am fairly pleased with them.  I finish hand stitching the binding on LC and get all threads buried.  Didn't I say that I needed to figure something out here?  I start the horrible process of doing the same thing to CS I.  Another day is in the books.

9th - First thing this morning there is a surprise announcement on Quiltville's blog.  This years mystery colors and yardage are out.  Oh my, now it is getting real and I still don't have last years finished.  Motivation!  The best kind.  I start my day quilting on OKA but am only one quadrant in when the needle decides to jump out of the machine, get bent and make "Annie" one very unhappy girl.  Me too as this means that I will go no further on this project today.  She needs some TLC from Mister.

Sooooo I move on to pulling fabrics for the mystery - woohoo.  I mean really?  Did you think the day would go by without me at least looking at what I have?  I still need to get the paint cards and verify my color choices, but I have a start.  I then dig around in my thrift store scrap tub to see if there is anything there I can use as well.  I pull all that I think may be in the color ranges, make a delightful mess, head into the house with a basket full, and start pressing them.

Once Mister is home we make a run to Lowes to get my new paint cards for the mystery real quick before returning home.

He then heads out to the studio to heal "Annie" and I settle into a comfy chair and finished burying threads in Celtic Solstice I -- it is finished.  Can you believe it?  Mister says there are threads all over the house and when I glace at the table in the living room, I have to agree.  If you want more info on my Celtic Solstice quilts, please check the tab at the top of the blog that refers to it.  All you want to know and more can be found there.  One down, one to go.

10th - Since my machine is happy again, I do all three remaining quadrants of quilting on and I think I have learned a new method on thread burying.  I do it as I change bobbins - right on the machine.  It takes a minute or two but is a break for my arms and I don't have to deal with them all at once.  It is wonderful to know that part is behind me.  Yay me!  Ra Ra Sis Boom Bah.  I sew the binding on and immediately settle in to hand stitch it down.  Oh yeah - look at me go.  My OKA is finished and I am literally twirling with happiness.   I finish ironing any scraps that might work for Grand Illusion (fondly referred to as GI from here on out), the new mystery.  While grabbing fabrics from the tub, I also found several orphan blocks and pressed them as well.  Ooooooh, more fun ahead playing with these.  I LOVE the little appliqued one with scissors and thread.  It is my anniversary today so I am off for a weekend in the Piney Woods with my sweetie.  See ya on the flip side.

11th - Anniversary trip with my sweetie.  If you wish to see some great shots of East Texas, check out this link.

12th - Still in East Texas

13th -  After a great trip, I need to buckle down and get back on schedule.  My month is almost half over and is getting away from me.  I need to buckle down on the RR and so have set a goal of two blocks per day.  I start by making units and wind up making all the units that will be needed for ALL blocks.  There are bright little stacks filling my tray and table.  What fun.  Now to push myself a little.  CS II must be sandwiched today.  Period.  End of discussion so get to it girl.  Within an hour, it is finished and ready to put on the machine.  Woohoo.  The last thing I do is pick out a few fabrics from the scraps I worked on to add to my GI stash.  I think I am ready except the yellow.  

14th - This morning I make my first objective the RR blocks.  I actually get all of them put together and lay out the rows.  What a color burst!  The first picture shows the row that is leaving the second shows both the rows -- the one on the left is the ones I am keeping.

When my rows are laid out, I head to the studio and soon have 2 quadrants of CS II quilted.  Once I am back in the house, I make the binding for CS II and also finish the label for PP.

I have been trying to do labels and crumb blocks as leader/enders and it is working out rather well.  I really am loving the crumby labels - it's my own personal little touch and becoming a "trademark" so to speak.

15th - I feel as though my first priority today needs to be the RR blocks and as a result I get an early start on them and since all the units are finished, weaving goes very quick.

I am thrilled that within a couple of hours, the rows are finished and I am able to attach to the base rows.  Wow -- I am pleased and excited to see what comes next on each of them.  I do the journal work and one row is now ready to mail - two weeks before the deadline.  Now doesn't that make me feel good.  You betcha.

 I definitely need to get out to the stdio and finish quilting CS II so off I go.  An hour and a half later, I have my quilt off the machine and into the house to be trimmed.  The end is in sight.  I am starting to push a little harder as I want to see this project in the "done" category.

16th -  I am one determine lady today.  The very first thing I do is find the backing for LS that Mister selected over a year ago.  I know, right?  Boy has this been a long time coming.  All the fabric requires is a center seam and since it is a solid golden yellow, I didn't even take a picture of it.  I press the top since it has been stored almost equally as long and down on the floor everything goes until my sandwich is complete.

Now, back to MFT and hopefully the setting will be finished today.  First up is to put the sashings from yesterday between the block columns.  This Block of the Month is from JoAnn's 1999.  That is how long it has been hiding in storage and the fabrics certainly scream that time period don't they?  Oh well --- gotta get her done.

Let's get started on the borders.   I put the first one on along with the cornerstones and somehow forgot that there is another border to attach.

Back to the machine I go and finally both borders are on.  The darker one certainly added to the quilt.  What was I thinking?

My top is complete and the binding is made as well.  The leader/enders for today netted me a finished label and the crumb border piece from Jacob's quilt.  Awesome.  I think that having these crumb borders from every quilt I have made will be so cool.  They will wind up on a quilt when I have enough of them plus orphan blocks that have not been used in backs.  Obviously this is an extended project.  Could take the rest of my life.

My evening is spent binding CS II.  The cheery colors just make me feel good and I have to say that I absolutely am enjoying every moment of this.

17th - First thing in the morning I put together a back for MFT and then settle in to work on the CS binding some more.  My friend, Lisa, and her daughter, Sierra, arrive around noon and after helping Sierra with a quilt she is working on, we go have a wonderful lunch and visit time together.  When I return home, I am on determine cookie.  This binding is going to be finished.  Within no time, I have realized my goal.  Both Celtic Solstice quilts are finished before the new mystery starts.  Well, at least before the first clue comes out.  Yay.

There are over 125 different fabrics in each quilt.  Isn't this just a burst of happiness?

And here they are together!  Ta da!

18th - I need to ship a quilt and am also attending a birthday party this weekend so need to get the labels finished on both Hyrum and Jacob's quilts.  Once that is finished I box up Hyrum's, grab the RR that needs to be mailed, and Mister and I walk down to the post office and plan on grabbing coffee as well.  Wouldn't you know it?  The post office is closed and now we have these dang packages along with us.  Grrrr.  We stop and pick up some birthday cards and head to the coffee shop - packages in tow.  I get a blended White Rocker - yum - and my mood improves greatly as we walk back home to get the car and head to another post office.  Yes!  Success -- the packages are on their way.

Before leaving home the first time, we had noticed an advertisement about a nearby art fair called Market in the Meadows so we make a stop and wander the 150 booths, visit with other quilters (one sweet - one not so much), and buy some gifts for our mothers.  I spot this oh so cute little dress and am thinking perhaps my granddaughters need one.  What do you think?  No --- of course I am not going to buy it but it is a simple peasant dress and easy peasy to make.  I will have to think about this a bit.

Mister asked if I had anything else I wanted to do and well, yes.  I would love to look for the yellow for GI and I just happen to have the paint cards along with me.  A couple of hours later we have the yellow, some yarn for grandson requested beanies, and -well - perhaps just a few fat quarters jumped into my arms too.  Look at these incredible colors.  I am really starting to dig this color combo.  And yes, I am dating myself by saying things like that.

19th - Today we are off to Abilene for family time and 12 hours, 2 birthdays, a primary presentation, and 1 ordination.  I get to give Jacob his quilt in person and that is always such a delight for me.  Later we are on our way home and I take the blue yarn that I brought with me in the car and attempt to work on a hat for Caleb.  This will be a learning process as I have to find just the right combination of hook/yarn.  When we arrive home, I give it another try.  Still no luck so I grab some red Jiffy (fuzzy) yard that I have at home and quickly put together a hat.  It looks good.  Perhaps I need to change plans.  I think I'll sleep on it.

20th - It is now 2 days before I leave town for a week -- and I still have so very much to do.  First thing in the morning I start in on the hats again and quickly put one together with a very large hook.  Now I have too loose of a hat -- before I had a bowl because it was so tight.  I need to find a happy medium.  Grabbing the K hook and keeping my yarn very loose, I am finally able to achieve something I can be happy with.  The problem is that my skein is just a bit too short and I need another row.  I think I will trim the blue hat with just a tiny bit of the black I bought.  Upon another look though, I think the blue hat is too big and need to take it apart again.  Maybe I'll just plan on doing these in Colorado where I can fit them to little boys.  That sounds best.

It's time to hit the studio and get some of LS quilted.  However, as soon as I sit down, I realize that the machine has not been cleaned this weekend so I start in working on it.  Look at this mess.  Once I have it all put back together - and yes it takes me several attempts - complete with a new needle,

I now have to decide on a color of thread.  Ugh.  This is a hard one.
My decision is soon made and I start in quilting.  Everything looks awesome.  It doesn't seem to be moving as easily as I would like though so I loosen the pressure and start back up.  GRRRRR.  Suddenly I have long, skipped stitches everywhere.  That's it.  Off the machine it comes so that I can rip it out and then I decide that perhaps today is not a good quilting day after all and I close up the studio.

Back into the house I trudge and think about things that need to be prepped for my trip on Wednesday.  I find all the parts I need for another secret project and, no -- this is not easy.  I want to sew.  As I look over at the Featherweight, I remember that I need to have both a label and binding for LS when it does come off the machine.  I find some leftover units from LS and some scraps as well.  Time to make a label.  While doing so, my leader/enders are some scraps left from cutting 2 1/2 inch squares in an exchange.  They become a crumb border piece.  Oh my, do I have enough of the orange batik left for the binding?  I have been using it in other projects without thinking about this.  I hunt down every bit of it that I have and cut.  Please let there be enough binding.  If not, there will be a section of a different orange in this quilt.  Oh well, something for posterity to wonder about - right?

21st -  I start reworking the blue hat and now it looks too small.  Back to my idea to just wait until I get there.  The doorbell rings and there is a package on the porch.  It is the next row that I get to work on.  I open it quick, read the journal before peeking at the row, and then open up the fabric.  Oh my --- this is beautiful and I am so very excited to get started.  I know that I want to use the Jelly Bean Blast block by Bonnie Hunter in Quiltmaker 100 blocks Volume 7 which is also the block she used in her Wanderlust quilt that was featured in Quiltmaker magazine July/August 2014.  I was in the beta class for this quilt almost a year ago in Plano and love the block.  I start pulling fabrics and making a rough plan of how to compose the block.  I will use some of the included fabric, some leftover squares from the previous row I worked on, and plenty of new fabrics as well.  This should be fun and since I am working on Wanderlust as a goal for November, I can just make these blocks at the same time.  Perfect.  I only need to pick up some more very light cream/tan fabrics for the corners.  Not too bad at all.  This is the extent of my sewing fun today.  I have to prepare for my trip and get packed.

10/22 - I am off to Telluride today.  I cannot believe how excited I am to be going.  Isn't it absolutely wonderful to be invited to visit grands?  When they ask the first time and you say you will think about it and then they ask twice more, well ya just gotta go.  Mountains, here I come.  It is a beautiful day for traveling and I spend a lot of time looking out windows but do manage to get a few spool doilies made.  Once I arrive in Montrose, we drive to Telluride and my daughter's house where visiting and fun takes place the rest of the evening.  I work on the boys beanies a bit (I guess I should say re-work to make fit) while Amanda and I get to visit.  Soon we are both yawning and discover that it is almost midnight.  Oh my, where did the evening go?  Time for bed.

10/23 -  Amanda has to be at work for a couple of hours today so Caleb and I are off to play.  A few hours later we return to the house and I settle in to complete the beanies and have them complete except for puffs on top.

10/24 - The older boys not only slept in their hats, but wear them to school.  My heart feels great.  It is so fun to make something for someone and have them truly appreciate and love it.  I decide that Trent is the only one in the family without a beanie now.

10/25 -  No sewing or crafting today, but dang, I am one worn out grandma.  Caleb and I went for a walk in the morning, we all hiked a couple of miles midday, AND went to a carnival/haunted house in the evening.  I will sleep good tonight.

10/26 - Amanda and Trent are having a mini football party tonight and I would rather let them have time with their friends so Amanda and I hunt down her sewing machine and set up a mini studio in my room - which, by the way, is the entire loft.  Love it.

I have brought a few small projects to work on and the first thing I grab are the bonus triangles from my RR.  I set to making HST's from them and soon have a chain which becomes bright little stacks of squares.  Caleb models the chain for me.  I then start in on the bookmarks I am making for gifts.  Goodness but they involve a ton of tiny pieces.

10/27 - Playing with the leftover yard strings I make puffs for the boys hats and pin them on.  It seemed better to do it that way so that they can be removed for washing and not become little wads of yarn.  The beanies are now officially finished.

10/28 - All three boys climb into the car in the morning sporting their new beanies.  LOVE.  After a  trip into Telluride, I spend the remainder of the day working in my "studio" and complete two of the three squares I need for the bookmarks.

About halfway through, the machine doesn't seem to be happy so I tear it apart and well, let it be said that I don't think that had every happened before.  Suffice to say, she was much happier when I was finished.

The late night hours are spent finishing Trent's hat, leaving it in his car for discovery the next morning and packing as I have to return home tomorrow.

10/29 - Dallas here I come.  Amanda, Caleb, and I drive into Montrose early in the morning to run some errands before delivering me to the airport.  Good-bye Telluride, I do love you and so wish that I could open my dream shop here.  Perhaps someday.  I spend the rest of the trip working on the remaining spool doilies.  They are now complete and simply need the tails worked in.  Another check mark for me --- woohoo.  The first thing I see in the house when we arrive are these beautiful roses, a card, and a new barrette for my hair.  Aren't they lovely?  Perhaps I should leave more often --- hmmm.

 10/30 -  I am an unmotivated, worthless human being today.  My lists are still long and yet here I sit working on this blog.  I have, however, finally received inspiration for a wedding quilt that I need to get finished and did order the fabric for it.  I guess that's a step in the right direction, but simply adds to my worklist.  Ugh.  Mister says that I always need a recovery day or two when I return from a trip.  I guess he is right since I certainly did that today.

10/31 -  Happy Halloween.  I am spending the morning working on blog posts as it is the end of the month and there are many that need to be completed.  I am simply waiting on developed pictures at this point and that is a good feeling.  I wonder how many little ones will be at our door tonight.  On August 13th I signed  up for the New Year's Bonnie Hunter classes with Fabric Fanatics and today I added one with the Garland Quilt Guild, which I am joining next Tuesday night.  I let my membership in the Dallas Guild go after a couple of unsatisfactory years and am looking forward to this new group.  So that makes 5 classes at the end of December/beginning of January to prepare for.  So much fun.  There is still one more that I am looking at that same week and is being held at Quilt Asylum but that just might be overkill for me.  I'll watch and see if it fills.  Okay - time to actually accomplish something today.  What can I actually complete?  Oh, I know -- I can work in all the ends of the spool doilies and call them finished.  I do that and then spend a little time making a label for the Scrappy Bargello quilt.  That's it.  A Shepherd's Pie for dinner, run to vote on last day of early voting and pick up "big" candy bars to hand out tonight.

Another month has flown by and I cannot believe I am down to about six weeks to finish up Christmas gifts.  Oh my.  Thanks for stopping in to share my life and if you once again made it this far, you have my admiration and appreciation.  I hope you enjoyed a nice beverage and had your feet up for this time together.  See ya next month.


  1. Yes, I did make it all the way to the end. Even though your month's make me breathless. But they also inspire me to complete more and sew more. So a big thank you for sharing your quilty world. And a big hip hooray on the finish of TWO CS !!

    1. Thank you so much Mary. I LOVE the feedback. If I can do it, so can you. It just means that we walk away from these dang computers more. And I am just as guilty of not doing that enough.

  2. You must move at the speed of light! Well you'll get a workout when we get to retreat. I have all this fabric for a western quilt and absolutely no pattern in mind. Hopefully 16 heads together can get me at least one good idea!!!! Ha ha ha!

    1. Thank you Sharron but I honestly think I waste a lot of time and could do so much more. I, too, have a quilt that I will need help with at retreat but in the meantime I am on the hunt for someone with an embroidery machine to help me prepare one of the blocks. So looking forward to our time on the Brazos.