Sunday, July 25, 2010

I'm joining up since I really need this!

I went to Carla's blog and saw this cute little button, yeah I know, I'm always the last one on board, lol. She is finishing an item a week for Christmas and showing pics...if you haven't been to her house, ya gotta run over and check out her mother in law's Christmas present! Very cool stuff. This is so what I need so I am not typically running full blast on the 23rd of December trying to finish 6 gifts in KNOW what I am talking about! So I am jumping in. With all the grandchildren, and great grands (this is so can I be a great grandmother?) I need all the challenge I can get!          
This crib size quilt is for one of my new grand daughters. It's a d9p, using 5" charm squares, gleaned from various scrap packs of mostly Christmas fabrics, that I bought from my fellow etsy sellers. I added a 1.5" border and 3" outer border of fadey (is this a word?) red and white stripe. I used green #8 perle cotton and a big stitch, to outline stitch a string of Christmas bulbs on the stripe fabric. It reallyt didn't turn out as I had hoped, the big stitch, so no close ups on this baby! The baby will love it, so I do to! I have another cut out and ready to sew, almost the same, except I am using a fadey (non-word again!) green stripe on the outside border. This little quilt was done @ 2 weeks ago, but I procrastinate! Oops, almost forgot, I did straight line stitch of 3 rows, by machine, on the white inner border and a nearly stitch in the ditch for the rest of the inner quilt. The next one, I promise to show a close up!

The Red, White and Blue quilt top that I made in my oh my God, this was horrid tutorial little quilt along, is going to be pinned and quilted and sent off to wrap a wee one in, either in the Gulf  or to a Mountain baby. I will show a pic next week, after I quilt it. (There are so many people devestated in our Gulf, that will never recover....I'll save THAT for another post.)
The Christmas present I finished this week is my version of the Lucy Tote!  It actually started it's life as a possible diaper bag, but the recipient said it was way to big for a diaper now, it's just a tote. The new recipient will love it, but I can't say who it's for since she might read my blog! I machine quilted this one too. It is huge, lol. 15" high x 19" wide x 5" depth....and that's not including the handles. I used 100% cotton batt and a piece of Timtex in the bottom to retain it's shape. No pattern, I winged it! Aren't ya proud of me Ms.Lottie?  I guess this just goes to show ya I quilt like my grandma cooked...just a bit much!
 It has 2 pockets on each side, lined with the red and white polka dots in the inside and quilted in a grid pattern.

I found a "new" pattern on The Quilt Forum, like I NEED a new pattern? Maybe for next week? Check it out...have you seen this before? I love it...the disappearing 4 patch!
 Back to my sewing, Elaine


Friday, July 23, 2010

What I saw this week, or, why I haven't been blogging

Some garage sale finds along with big daddies tools and some clay pots from the thrift store.

This is an awesome a group of "stuff", along with another old chair....needs a little paint!

                                     The porch swing is a $20. craigs list find.

The pile of weirdness, on the porch, is a complete mule harness set. Big daddy was thrilled to purchase this....SOMEBODY PLEASE TELL ME THIS IS LIKE THAT BOLT OF FABRIC YOU HAVE TO HAVE AND DON'T HAVE A CLUE WHY!!! Ahh, we don't have mules, lol! But it was a helluva buy!!
The black chair, behind the sweet basil plant, was the other item from the garage sale, the 2 chairs, mule harnesses and some other "stuff", was all for $5.00 total! Yeah, I was amazed too.

In the late afternoons, the bantams pop up on the porch and make themselves at home! I will spy them on the rocking chairs and plants and they will be peeking in the window watching me, lol. Oh, why didn't I KNOW that bantams do as they want! You cannot cage them, they are the free spirit of the chicken world and I love them!

Gracie Mae loves going with me everywhere, especially if she thinks I am heading out to the front yard. The big chickens chase her but I think she thinks she can one up the bantams....NOT! Here is Trooper squaring off with her, while the others look on. Way to funny. I know the pic is blurry, but it is the only pic I took of Chihuahua and chicken facing off! Sometimes you just have to squint, sorry.

This is the end Gracie, run!

"I run this yard, see....yeah, it's me and my chicks...."

I have wanted to share something really cool! We have horses, dogs and chickens. Every once in awhile, our grocery store culls out the over ripe or imperfect fruits and veggies, stuffs as much as they can in a bag for a buck. This week I bought bananas, another bag with 2 pineapples, 2 cantalopes and one stuffed with peaches! Each bag for a buck, way cool! Last time I cut the bananas up and dried them for our horses and some for me! The peaches made 6 finished cups of peach freezer jam and a ton of peels and over ripe fruit for the chickens. I cut the cantalope up with the seeds, peels and over ripe areas for the chickens and horses. Same with the pineapple. Do you ever buy anything like this...or is it available in your area?

I have been busy cutting fabric for my etsy store. I'm getting over fanatical with my Accuquilt-Go cutter! 

I have been trying to decide what to do with my shop inventory that is "not" the latest line. You know, that fabric you NEVER give a second glance to? So, I have been busy making 2 1/2" rolls of fabrics in yellows, oranges, blues, reds, etc. Love them to pieces! I think I need to do some I spy pieces...what is better, 5" squares or 10" squares? Do you like color families or groups of fabrics that go well together? I hope to see what you ladies think!
Now, back to my little shop, let me know your thoughts on the fabs, k? Now, go quilt something!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Borders can be fun, or we're on the homestretch!

Well, it looks like my photoshop is working like my ex-husband, only when it feels like it and unacceptable to my needs!  
Here are your sashing strips...from last night. At least you can see how they are supposed to be like.

Inside border:

Attach one 2 ½” wide strip to each side, press well. Now attach the remaining 2 ½” wide strips to the top and bottom.  Please note: the inner border is to be sewn to each side first before the top and bottom strips are added.

Outside border:

Sew 3 of the 5” outer border strips end to end and set aside. Sew a 5” wide border to top and bottom. Now take the remaining super long strip and sew to side of your top, trim. Sew the remaining strip to the opposite side, press well.

Layer with batting and the backing, baste and quilt as desired.

Please remember to press well after each time at your sewing machine and clip stray threads. Measure your top thru the center from side to side and top to bottom for an accurate measurement for the backing. Your batting and backing need to be @ 4" larger all the way around your quilt top.  To make your life easier, you can use 2 ½” wide strips throughout the entire quilt, all except for the outer borders of 5” wide.

For the hand sewing enthusiasts:

Add your borders the same as you have done the sashing strips. Make sure the marks on your border strips are 1/4" in from the don't forget to cut the border strips 1/2" wider then for the machine sewn quilt top!

Sign your quilt before you gift it. I will make sure photo shop is working well next time, I promise! Thanks for hanging out with me and if you have pics, please send them to me so I can post them. Any questions.....Elaine

This quilt is my original design. You may make as many as you like, but, if you sell any, could you please do me a favor....? For every 3 quilts you sell, please make a Mountain Baby quilt to send to the The Christian Appalacian project? I know the mamas would love it, and so would I.~~ Thanks~~

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Adding the sashing

Due to circumstances beyond my control, my photo shop is not working tonight...could be my slandering it, who knows. I am going to cry later. If anyone has any questions about the quilt along, please ask. I apologize for the inconvenience this has caused~~
Be sure to measure the block BEFORE cutting the strips into the sub-cuts! If you have decided to go with the 2 1/2" wide strips for the blocks, the sashing will be smaller. Don't forget to press well after each step.

Adding the sashing by machine:
Cut the red and white stripe into 8 strips 9 ¼” x 2 ½”, attach to an edge of one block. Sew opposite side to another block. Attach another red/white stripe strip to finished block, and attach another block. You should now have 3 blocks separated by 2 of the strips. Repeat with remaining blocks to form 4 rows of 3 blocks each.

Take one of the remaining red and white stripe strips and attach to the side of one row of the blocks, press well, attach another 3 block section to the same red and white stripe. Repeat for the next 2 rows of three block sections.

For you handpiecers: Do a backstitch every inch or so when handpiecing to keep your patches anchored, and also prior to and after a seam.

After your blocks are complete and pressed, subcut the sashing strips (always add 1/2" to the width of the strip, and mark the 1/4" seam allowance...the same mark you will sew on) the exact length of your block. Pin on the beginning 1/4" mark and on the ending, pin every few inches to keep the sashing strip and block well aligned. Refer to the prior post about sewing THRU the seams and not over them.
Attach a 2nd block to the opposite side of the strip, press. Sew a 2nd strip to the second block, as before, press, attach the 3rd block.

Repeat to make 4 units of 3 each. Measure each unit and cut a sashing strip to the side of the 3 block unit, press. Sew a 2nd three block unit to the opposite side of the strip. Continue until all of the 4 of the three block units have sashing strips in between, see picture.

Tomorrow we get to add the inner border, wahoo~~~some fun is acoming!

Red, White and Blue quilt along

I made this quilt originally for my grandson Liam, prior to his birth. I knew he would have a July birthday so I leaned towards patriotic colors for his baby quilt. Ya'll know, I am a little to the left..right? So here are your fabric needs:


Blocks~8 ¾” square

Quilt~42” x 53”


For the blocks:

White with small blue print~6 strips 3 ½” wide x WOF

Blue with white print~total 6 strips 3 ½” x WOF

Red with white print~2 strips 3 ½” x WOF

For the sashing:

Red and white stripe~4 strips 2 ½” x WOF

Inside border:

Blue with medium white print~4 strips 2 ½” x WOF

Outer border:

White multi-colored print~5 strips 5” x WOF

Refer to photo for color placement as needed. Cut the block prints into 3 1/2” squares. Piece 2 blue squares on opposite sides of 1 white square, repeat once for 2 sections. Piece 2 white squares on opposite sides of red square. Now sew all 3 sections together to form 1 square. Repeat to make 12 squares.  (If you are machine piecing, leave the strips in one piece, lay 2 strips face to face and sew together, press and repeat with the third strip, press. I use the shape cutter and cut 3 1/2" wide segments, then piece the 3 block segments together into a block)
As an added treat for you quilters itching to learn something to do on the go, how about some hand stitching pointers/directions?
      ~~ Hand Piecing~~
If you want to use scraps and hand piece, mark the backs of your squares with a 2 ½” mark and cut out each one leaving ¼” all the way around. Lay 2 squares face to face and pin at each end of your marked lines. Sew with a running stitch and one strand of thread from one mark to the other. DO NOT SEW PAST THE SEAM LINES!

Press the seams towards the dark. Sew three blocks together, repeat 2 more times. Take one section of 2 blue and 1 white and butt the seams together with a section of 2 white and 1 red. Pin the first and last seams and as needed keeping the butted seams together. Sew on the line, as before, until you reach the butted seams. Make a backstich as close to the vertical seam as possible. Now, take your needle and insert @ the backstitch you just made, and run it thru the seams to the middle section. Make a backstitch as close to the seam (that you just went thru) and continue with the running stitch to the next seam. You don’t want to sew the seam down, just go thru it to the next section. Continue in this manner until all 12 of the 9 patches are sewn together.

Stay tuned for the next installment tomorrow. If you have not tried hand piecing, I encourage you to try it. It is a lot faster then you would imagine and quite portable. Simply cut your blocks, mark them and off you go! All you need to work with is: marked patches, a few pins, needle, thread and scissors. Stash them all in a small container or baggie and go watch the kids play ball! You can even get creative and use the bowl edge of a spoon to "press" in a pinch.


Sunday, July 4, 2010

Finally......The Winner!


                                                Fiesta....send me your address please, you're the winner!

I spun the random number generator (don't even ask why I haven't put the original up with the number intact) and tried to post it.....aaarrrrgghjhhh!!

Obviously, I had "issues" with my power today. I have been enticing this gorgeous squirrel to pop over for peanuts and go silly on my big pine tree in the front yard. Goofy kid, took one for the team and fried himself on the transformer. Sounded like a shotgun blast, power went out... I called the power co-op at 1025, the big truck showed up at 1115. Sunday AND a holiday, wow! Then the internet went down for most of the day. The dinner I fixed tonight was nasty! Poor dog almost choked on it! Then I called my darling son, earthmama's husband, and asked him to post for me...that I wouldn't be online today. He did and then asked what the BeeBalm was. He had inadvertenly posted on my virtual quilting bee.

On a much more pleasant is the official birthday of our wonderful country, the United States of America. If you live here, I hope you have a wonderful holiday. If you don't live here, then pack up and get over here to help us celebrate! You have 364 days until we celebrate, potatoe salad, corn on the cob, watermelon, fireworks, ice cold beer and sun burned kids!

Thank you each and every one who entered my giveaway, I sure appreciated your answers. I'm having a quilt along starting's going to be the red, white and blue quilt! Did you see that one coming? Later, Elaine