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Thursday, April 9, 2015

2015 Finish Along, Quarter 2 Goals

It’s the second quarter of the year already, and time for me to set out my Quarter 2 Goals  for the 2015 Finish Along.  Hosted by Adrienne of On the Windy Side, this year-long Finish Along is divided into quarters, with prizes by lots of lovely sponsors and supporters. For every finish, the participant gets an entry into the final prize drawings.

Last quarter I had four goals and finished two.  Those were the quilt for my son Shane, and the Birch Trees quilt for my grandson Easton.  I almost finished my Crazy Floral Needlepoint Quilt, but not quite.  So it heads my Quarter Two list.

1.  Crazy Floral Needlepoint Quilt

The stitching is all done except for the second-to-right block on the bottom.  That will take maybe an hour. Then another hour or two to tack on and embellish a few florals and beads, so maybe one morning to finish. I have actually begun sewing the blocks together, and once the rows and columns are complete, they will be attached to the stabilized needlepoint. I have a sturdy backing and will assemble this with a rod pocket and no interior batting. I will likely tie it, with the ties showing on the back and a mere bead or button showing on the front.  I have decided to sell this when it is complete as I do not have any wall space on which to hang it.

2.  Banjo Pow-Wow

This is a quilt promised to my dear husband, Bruce.  It is all cut out - and believe me, there was a LOT of cutting.  No wonder I like using pre-cuts when I can, LOL.   As you read this, I will already have begun the piecing process.  A little bit of music on (America`s Greatest Hits; must hear my favorite, Ventura Highway, a few times....), a Diet Dr. Pepper nearby (but not too close), and I`m good for a couple hours....

3.  What Cancer Cannot Do

This quilt is being made for a friend of ours who is battling cancer.  Cal has fought hard and was in remission for 5 years. Then last fall, it began growing again. He has had a couple operations, radioactive pellets inserted and begun a new regimen of drugs. And the results are very encouraging at this time!  We are hopeful that he will be with us for many more years. And this quilt, with its inspiring messages and soothing colors will hopefully provide hugs to him whenever his spirits are low.

4. Mini Marmalade

The pattern is Pretty in Pink by Heather Mulder Peterson of Anka’s Treasures and the fabric is a charm pack of Bonnie & Camille`s Marmalade that I had laying around.  I am following the pattern, by cutting each charm into four pieces and inserting the white mini-strips.  It is taking me forever, because I struggle matching things precisely. Looking back, I wish I would have made a vertical slash and inserted the strip, and then made a horizontal slash and inserted that strip. The pattern calls for us to insert the little strips between each pair of pieces top and bottom, and then add the long vertical strip.  Too late to switch that now because everything is already cut out.

And I am definitely feeling the need for one of Lori Holt’s mini design boards (check them out here) and some Alpha-bitties.

5.  Ruffles Skirt for London

And just for good measure, I am adding a number five; a skirt for my granddaughter London. I intended to make it last summer, but definitely will this summer.  And probably some other things that aren’t on any list.....

I have another quilt planned that will be a queen-sized bed quilt for our bed.  I eventually want to have at least one quilt for each season. Our bedroom is painted and carpeted in neutral shades, so changing out the decor with bedspreads, pillows and a quilty wall hanging every quarter is in my long-terms plans.

Now, back to stitching.  I hope your spring is sunny and warm!!

Cathy maroon

Friday, April 3, 2015

Purple Scrapple Eater

Hooray! Today I finally dragged myself off my death bed (OK, a slight exaggeration; but I’ve had the Cold From He** for 3 days).  Nothing like playing with fabric to get me going!

So, April is the month for Purple in our Rainbow Scrap Challenge.  I seem to have quite a bit of purple, but some of it is reserved for other things (am I allowed to do that?)  No matter. The first plan is to get the two large blocks of Wonky Log Cabins done, each consisting of 4 smaller blocks.  As you can see, I have done four:

I need to get more variety in there, methinks, so I may have to “unreserve” some of my other  purple scraps.

And since I only posted one of my yellow blocks last month, I want to show you that I actually did finish TWO - and all before month end.

I even played with these blocks on my design wall, but as you can see, my design wall is so small as to be nearly useless.

I'm working on a plan in my studio to shuffle things around.  Part of the plan involves getting rid of some storage cabinets that take more room than they give, if you know what I mean. And then replace them with something from IKEA (oh darn, a trip to IKEA!!!), move my bookshelf, and I will have a whole area about 7.5 x 7.5’  to rig something up as a design wall.  That’s still not big enough for queen quilts, but it’s manageable.  

If you have scraps, why not join us for Scrap Happy Saturday with Angela ?!?

Cathy maroon

Friday, March 27, 2015

Birch Trees Quilt Finished

Happy Friday.  This week I finished the Birch Trees Quilt for my grandson Easton. He picked out the pattern (Bright Birch Trees from Crazy Mom Quilts) and the color palette.  I am really pleased how it turned out.

It was a real treat to work on, even though it was the second masculine quilt in a row I have made (the first was this one for my son Shane).

This quilt was #2 of my finish goals for the 2015 Finish Along which I talked about here.

I should be better about posting more regularly, because when I read other blogs, I love to see work-in-process photos. But I did take some in-process photos, so I will share them now. In the future, I’ll attempt to post more of my work as I go along. Even if no one is reading my blog, it will at least be a refresher for me, LOL!!

Making a seemingly-endless supply of scrap strips
For me, working with so many solids was new, and making those darn trees seemed never-ending. But I thought of Easton wrapped up in it, and really did enjoy the process.

Pinning up and sewing the strips. My cats LOVED them!
Notice how the sewn-in strips are in lower blocks and the dangly strips (not yet sewn in) are higher up? That is to discourage two felines who shall remain unnamed from batting them around.  I think I am going to write a book:   QUILTING WITH CATS.  Should be a best-seller, eh?

After washing, it crinkled up nicely. So soft!!  

I just quilted wavy, unmeasured lines with my Bernina 550QE, using a walking foot and Aurifil 40-wt. thread. OMG, it was the first time I have used Aurifil, and I am now a believer. I couldn’t believe how nice it was. Stitched like buttah!

The backing, which is actually a bit darker than I was able to capture with a camera, is Carolyn Friedlander’s Branches in Charcoal from her Botanics line.  I bought all the fabrics (the Kona solids and the backing) during end-of-year clearance sales. The trees were made from my scrap bins.

Finally, I made a 14” pillow with medium gray on the front. The back is the Branches fabric again, and was constructed to allow easy-on/easy-off for washing.  Now looking at the pillow, I think it looks rather plain. I wish I had quilted it first. Hindsight.

This is my second finish for this first quarter in the 2015 Finish-Along with Adrienne of On the Windy Side.

And this is what is now on my design wall:

It’s the last of my CQJP2012 (Crazy Quilt Journal Project for 2012). Better late than never!  I still have one block to finish stitching, then the process of trimming and sewing them together begins. The center needlepoint has been trimmed, and will finish at 15x15”. When everything is sewn together, I may have some areas to finish stitching to eliminate some “black holes”.  Bottom Left Corner, I’m looking at YOU!  Then I will figure out how to stabilize it before adding a black-on-black houndstooth-weave home dec fabric (a blend). I will add a hanging sleeve and most likely list it for sale in my Etsy shop.  I hope to have this finished in the next few days so I can count this as my third finish this quarter.

Linking up to Fabric Tuesday.
Come back tomorrow for my Scrappy Saturday post.

Cathy maroon

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Scrappin’ with Yellow

I have a lot of yellow scraps, and because of that I do plan to do more with them this month than just some scrappy log cabins.  But first, let me show you the first 4 (that will be combined to equal one) blocks

I will do four more of the little blocks so that I will have a total of 8, which will equal two yellow circles (to accompany the two blue and two pink made so far this year).  But I will do something else with the rest, once I decide if I want HSTs, churn dashes, Dresdens, or strips for something with strippy blocks. Decisions, decisions.

And in the meantime, I have been working on the Birch Woods quilt for my grandson Easton. The colors and pattern were chosen by him (except the scrappy trees).I would like to finish this one in the next few days so I can gift it to him next Friday.

The blocks in the top 4 rows are sewn, but are just pinned (overlapping) because my design board area is too small.  There is a definite studio re-do in my summer this year..... Anyway, I just have the four bottom blocks to stitch, then can begin assembling the rows, etc. I have one extra block that I will make into a pillow.  Hopefully I will have more pix to show on this next week.

I have two other quilts in process, plus a crazy quilt wall hanging I would like to complete before month-end.

Linking up to ScrapHappy Saturday.  If you have scraps, why not join us?!?

Cathy maroon

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Pink Scrap Quilt Blocks

Early in the month, we took off to warm southern Arizona and spent ten days there. It was so lovely and sunny and in the low seventies - mid eighties (F). Glorious!  I did take some hand stitching along, and managed to finish up one crazy quilt block (picture in next post).

On the sewing front, I have been working steadily on my grandson`s quilt and will have some WIP pictures next Wednesday. But today, for Scrappy Saturday at So Scrappy, where I am participating in the Rainbow Scrap Challenge, I am showing my eight scrappy and wonky log cabin blocks.  Pink is the color of the month for February, and I am pairing my colors with black and white.

This is actually 8 blocks (8.5” each).  They will sew up into two 16x16” blocks.  Now I have two blue and two pink and will begin with a new color next week!  :-)

Thanks for dropping by!  I am linking up to ScrapHappy Saturday.

Cathy maroon

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Crazy Quilt Quarterly

It’s here! The new (inaugural) issue of Crazy Quilt Quarterly published by Pam Kellogg of Kitty & Me Designs.  You may recall that this publication was previously published by Pat Winter (as Crazy Quilt Gatherings).  

I was lucky to get an advance issue, and I can tell you it is full of lovely eye candy.  And in addition to the lovely pictures, there is a lot of “meat” for you too: tutorials, news, etc. I am so excited to be part of the team as Creative Consultant, and can’t wait for you to see some of the things that are in store for the next several issues!

CQQ is available as a download or in print.  Just follow the link to Magcloud.  Crazy Quilters, you will really LOVE it!

Cathy maroon

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Blue Saturday

I`ve been doing some work with my fabric scraps, focusing on blue this month (not light, light blues or green-blues, or dark/navy blues; just blue blues) with the Rainbow Scrap Challenge.

Eight scrappy log cabins with black/white prints for contrast. Each of the blocks finish at 8.5 inches, so four will finish into a 16x16 inch block.  I have lots more blue so I may do four more of the 8.5’s so I can have three big blue ones. And then I will do a few of these with each color of the month.

Off to work on my Bright Birch Trees quilt for my grandson. That is the name of the pattern, but the quilt will be renamed as it will be in shades of grays, pale blues/greens, ecru, etc. At least the background will. The trees themselves will have a bit more color. I will have to see how it looks as construction begins....

Linking up (hopefully; the new software keeps throwing me for loops) to ScrapHappy Saturday at So Scrappy.

Cathy maroon
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