Thursday, April 30, 2015

April Quilt Update

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I have moved the previous posts to the end of the entry.  I hope that you make it that far.


Round Robin (RR) blocks (14)  for blue/gold top - put into row, attach, and mail by April 28th - yes
Zyra Tea Set completed - yes
Wanderlust (W)- quilt, attach binding, label, binding on - yes
BOM blocks (3) complete -  yes
Easy Street (ES) Clues 5, 6, 7,  yes 8 - nope
Orange Crush (OC) Clue 6 (top made), back, binding, label - yes
3 Group Christmas Blocks made -  no 
4 Personal Christmas Blocks made - no
Bow-Dacious (BD)  set, sandwiched, quilted, labeled, binding on - set, sandwiched, started quiliting
Prepare for retreat - yes
Old Tobacco Road (OTR) - fabrics selected and clues 1,2 - yes to fabrics and clue 1

1st - It's APRIL!!! That means that retreat is at the end of the month and I have oh so much I want to accomplish before that.  I also have grands this month so we'll see how it goes.  I am spending today working on the blog and making sure I start out the month current.  Oh yeah -- and it's time for ES Clue 5.  This is a quick and easy clue that I loved putting together.  Aren't these colors just yummy?  For more on this clue please check out this LINK.

2nd - Today's mission is to finish the OC top.  I get the borders on and the label made.  I do love this one even though I wasn't sure I would at first.  Too fun and oh so scrappy.

I also draw a graph for the wreath block that I want to make for my Christmas quilt.  It should be fun.

I get out the tea set to work on for my granddaughter's birthday.  I am finally getting back to working on this project.  Where has the past week gone?  I bought this tea set greenware OVER 20 years ago.  Two years ago, I took it out to clean while I was working on one for Elena.  I left it sitting on a tray in my studio and somewhere in all that time and various grandchildren visiting, the spout got broke.  About six months ago, we fixed it and today, while I am trying to clean the repaired area, it broke off again, hit the floor, and shattered.  Great!  I call the local ceramic shop to see if they have ANY teapots poured and the owner says yes.  I quickly call DART and take the train up to Spring Valley to just get a teapot.  I don't care if it matches the set.  When I arrive, guess what???  She has the exact same one only with a different lid.  No problem.  I didn't break the lid.  What are the odds?  If you wish to follow the saga of the tea set, please click on this LINK.

3rd - The ENTIRE day is spent painting on the tea set.  I take small breaks to clean the house a bit and prepare for my trip tomorrow.  Mister sits down in the evening to help me finish the painting so that he can take it to the ceramic shop for firing tomorrow.

4th - I am flying to Denver and back today to retrieve grands.  I love having a project to work on while flying and today it is my snowman block for the Christmas quilt.  Doing a little embroidery is a nice change now and then.  By the time I meet up with my family at the gate in Denver, all I have left is to add the applique carrot nose.  Yes!

5th -  Happy Easter - My day is spent with family.  Hope yours is wonderful as well.

6th - I am spending the day at the zoo with my grandsons but manage to do a little studio cleaning.

7th - It's a Harry Potter Lego Day.  We have decided to watch the entire series while the boys are here so the first movie is today.  We also walk to the Dollar Store and grocery store for a fun project.  Mister takes us for pizza at Tony's and a walk at the lake in the evening.  Once all are in bed, I spend a little time sewing a get ES Clue 6 finished as well as a Christmas block cut and kitted up.  The link for clue 6 can be found HERE.

8th -  I cut 2 more Christmas blocks and print out the OTR clue to select fabrics.  The boys and I visit the Children's Aquarium and Discovery Gardens/Butterfly House.

9th -  I am busy all day with my grands.  Dallas Museum of Art, Klyde Warren, Harry Potter movie, etc.  With Mister home, I do manage to steal the car in the afternoon and go pick up the tea set.  It is not pink -- oh my.

10th - We spend all day in Fort Worth and the evening with Great-Grandma.  The plan is to go swimming but just as we are preparing -- Katie is having her baby giraffe life on television and everything comes to a halt so that we can watch.  Wonderful!

11th - Family Day

12th - I spend most of the day with family but do finish cleaning the studio.  I have all fabrics for OTR selected and the studio has now been converted into a bedroom as my daughter arrives tonight.

13th - Family Day

14th - Family Day

15th -  Everyone is gone!  The house is so quiet.  I am home alone and spend the morning working on the tea set.   I get the April BOM blocks finished as well.  Nice to stay on schedule.

16th -  Retreat is getting closer and closer and I am a LOT of cuts away from being ready.  Today I am cutting all batting/boards for retreat projects.  I have taken over the den and there is batting EVERYWHERE.  Once I get all the batting cut, I move on to the foam boards.

Taking a 20x30 foam board, I cut it in half and then cut 3 10" squares from each half.  As soon as my stack is complete and I have 30 boards for retreat, I make my sample mini design board.  I like it -- kinda cute.

Next, to make the pillowcase sample.  O start bu connecting 20 of those charms squares I cut last month into strips.  Now to sew two strips together and then quilt them.

The pillowcase is awesome and I do love it.  I see gifts in the future for grands.  Too fun.

Both projects take me less than 2 hours and that is with sewing machine issues.  I think they will work out great for retreat.

With the pillowcases and mini design boards behind me,  I grab some of the leftover foam board, batting and crazy strips of fabric that no one will ever want to use, including me, and make a slightly larger design board to take to retreat with me.  Yay -- I love it.

17th - It's time for fun with friends today.  We are off to brunch at the Old Fashioned Pancake House before shopping down in the warehouse district.  Stephannie has organized this Meet and Greet and she has a fabulous turnout.  We just keep adding tables to fit everyone in.  How amazing is this?  Old friends and new faces all gathering for a day of fun.  What could be better?

I manage to get the remaining fabric needed for the pillowcases at retreat as well as finding a few more cool chicken fabrics.  It's a great morning and I am ready to go home and sew again.  Love being inspired by these ladies.  For more about this wonderful outing, please check out this LINK.

Once home, it's time to get clue 7 for ES finished.  I love how this is turning out.  I am able to put my new design board to use while making the setting triangles.  Perfect!

They go together well while keeping Mister company in the office.  Another step finished and one more item checked off the list.  For details on this clue, click HERE.

18th - It's Saturday which means I get to spend the day with Mister.  We are having an errand morning and the first stop is to pick up the tea set from its final firing.  While there we meet up with Lee Ann so that I can recapture an item left in her car yesterday.  The second stop is back at the Original Pancake House to retrieve my sunglasses that were left behind.  Mister is amazed that somehow they keep coming back to me no matter how many times I lose them.  Additional stops are made at Home Depot to get supplies for the design wall/blackberry bushes and JoAnn's for foam/flannel for the tea set and design wall respectively.  We are loaded down and return home to start in.  I cut the remaining pillowcases from yesterday's purchase and clean the studio again while Mister gives my 301 a spa treatment.

19th -  After yesterday, we have decided to stay home and tackle some projects today.  I start setting BD while Mister works on tea set - removing the firing points.  I am loving how BD is changing right before my eyes with each border addition.

Before borders - blocks are set:

After one border:

Second border:

We both take a break and decide it is time to tame the blackberries.  They are EVERYWHERE and loving all this wonderful rain.  With wire, posts, and clippers in hand -- off we go.  Picture above is before -- below is after.  We did good.

20th -  First thing this morning I head for the studio and start quilting W.  Was going along just fine and suddenly - "eyelashes". After trying several things, I decide to walk away and move onto row robin work.

Let me just say real quick that I am loving the row robin.  It scared me to death at first but I have enjoyed the learning process of it so very  much.  This one has colors that I haven't really worked with in quilting yet and I'm still using batiks so I am thankful for the ones I was able to get from Debra Linker.

First up:  strip sets and then subcuts and very quickly - 4-patches.  The next thing to do is spin those seams and add sashing units to them.  I have the first step of the block finished and my mind is wanting a new project to work on.

Mister arrives home about this time and comes bearing gifts.  Oh yay!  The birthday season has begun early since I am going to retreat next month.  I am so excited and the flowers are beautiful.  He heads for the studio to finish the tea set box so that we can get that gift in the mail.

He uses the foam that we purchased and cuts slots for each dish.  Another piece of foam gets attached to the lid of the box to cushion the pieces when the box is closed.  He also add some loose strips of foam inside just for shipping.  Please let this make it there unbroken.  Once he finished, it is all put into a cardboard box, surrounded with peanuts and sent on it's way.  Isn't the box simply beautiful?  Love Tuesday Morning.

Since Mister is busy working, I decide to piece a back for OC and make the binding.  While I was at it, I cut the binding for BD all while making strip sets from my 2" strips as leader/enders and wound up cutting half of my OTR 4-patches from those sets.

21st -  I am being so good and staying focused.  Checkmarks on lists are happening regularly right now and it makes me feel so good.  Nice and productive.

I am focusing on the RR chevrons this morning and once they are complete, I put together two of the blocks.  LOVE them.  I lay out the rest of the blocks for tomorrow and move on to the OTR four-patches.  For more information on the OTR clue please click on THIS LINK.  I also cut and laid out the BD back, made the BD binding and finished the label  Mister cleaned my 301 again and got her to stop making eyelashes.  Woohoo.

22nd -  I am RR determined.  I finish the blocks, make and attach one row as well as doing the journal entry.  Woot woot -- it's ready to mail tomorrow.  I make the back for BD.  It's a terrible picture, but frankly, I don't have the energy today to crawl around on the floor and straighten it out.

My final task is to cut and kit up 4 more Christmas Blocks.  A royal mess is made in the office and when Mister calls, I am a moving unit to get it back to normal.  Whew.

23rd -  A wonderful fat quarter bundle greets me first thing this morning as I go to brush my teeth.  Oh -- isn't the birthday season fun?  I want the extra Christmas blocks all cut and kitted up today.  It takes me ALL day but I do achieve my goal.   Mister calls and says we are going to Cane Rosso tonight.  Time to stop and get cleaned up.  You all need to be jealous -- very, very jealous.  Yep, I'm a funny girl.

24th -  I am up and out to the studio first thing.  I quilt two quadrants of W before taking a look at the back - ugh.  I tear out a section, work on retreats (i.e. book the beach house) and purchase airline tickets for the wedding.  Mister is working from home on Monday so I also started my shopping lists.

25th -  Back to the studio first thing and the quilting on W is FINISHED.  I attach the binding and label (there is a link to a tutorial on this HERE.  and take her into the house for the handwork.

Mister gives spa treatments to the Featherweight and my two-tone 301 while enjoying the yard a bit.  He also works on my 301 table which I want to take to retreat with me.  It's looking beautiful.

You can follow the process of the 301 table and see before and after pictures HERE.

Now to get Oc sandwiched and ready for the machine.  I am still on target for having three quilts before retreat!

26th -  After practicing some swirls and "stuff", I am ready to quilt OC.  I get started and get about a quadrant finished before noticing a HUGE fold in the back.  It is a big time fail and since I tried fancy quilting, tearing it out is a bear.
After only a few minutes, I decide it is not worth it and pitch the whole quilt into the trash.  I switch to BD and get it sandwiched.

Then back to the studio to get one quadrant quilted.  It also has a small fold and needs to be ripped out but I will deal with that later.  Perhaps it is time for me to find a frame for these quilts.  My arms are just not what they were even a year ago.  Mister rescued OC from the garbage and it is now sitting in a heap in the den.

27th -  Shopped all day preparing for retreat and handling "stuff".

28th -  I am spending the day organizing for retreat.  I put the split rings on all charms and destroyed my nails in process.  Mister says I need a special tool.  He will pick it up tomorrow on his way home from work.  We figure out the design wall to put it together tomorrow night and head out for a wonderful Thai dinner.

29th -  I have totally given up on having three quilts done before retreat.  That decision allowed my stress level to go down immensely.  Why do we do these things to ourselves?  No one else was holding a whip over me.  Ugh.  I cut the rest of OTR, make some of the units, do the laundry, attach fabric to the bottom of the flannel for the design wall.

When Mister arrives home, he finishes the 301 table --- It is gorgeous.  We then do the design wall.  You can follow that whole process by clicking on this LINK.

I am leaving tomorrow for retreat and will be gone 11 days.  Yes, that's right -- 11.  It will be over my birthday and Mother's Day and my sweetie has done everything in his power to make my birthday season perfect.  I have been wined and dined and gifted like crazy.

When Mister arrives home from work a package has been delivered and he gives it to me.  Can you believe it?  A complete set of Aurifil thread.  Oh my.  We then get the car loaded and ready to leave first thing in the morning.

Then, as I was sitting and trying to attach the charms to the name tags that my sweetie brought home from work, I was plunged into darkness.  I turned around and my wonderful sweetheart was standing behind me with a lit cake and singing to me.  Life simply cannot get better.  I am so blessed to have this man in my life.

30th - Today is the day.  We are up early and headed to Rainbow, TX so that I can be dropped off and Mister back to work at a decent time.  Miss Allison meets us there and helps to unload so that we send my sweetie on his merry way.  It is time for RETREAT!!

Please be on the watch for a post all about the retreats but as of this writing it is not available to link to.

Suffice to say -- the first night brought us all together around a hand quilting frame for laughter and love.  This group of women truly do care for each other and are oh so good for each other.

Oh, I do get a few BOM blocks done today.  Not much else though.  Stay Creative my friends.

Thanks for checking up on me this month.  Check back in now and then and please check out the link to OUR QUILT BLOGS at the top of the page for many of the quilt groups are starting to restrict the posting of blogs into the groups.  If you want to still have a long monthly read and time for your tea, join the group.  Thanks for sticking around this long -- I appreciate all of you who read each month.

Links to Previous 2015 Monthly Update Posts

January Quilt Update
March Quilt Update


  1. Replies
    1. Thank you Allison. It was a truly fun month.

  2. I knew you were a busy and productive lady but, really, I had NO idea! xo what a lovely post!

    1. Thank you so very much. I find that keeping this little "journal" each month keeps me on track a bit. Makes me a little accountable, lol.