Wednesday, May 12, 2021


 I've come up with a solution for the last six inches of my Time Flies quilt top. In the previous post I had a 6" x 12" hole to fill. I was able to make two flying geese units out of the scraps from the quilt I was working on at the beginning of November 2020 (which I don't seem to have shown you as a finished top! It's still waiting to be quilted; maybe I'll think to photograph it and show it to you then 😏).

So here's what I have now:

And here's what I did:

In case you can't tell, the black "goose" features a watch face. The blue patch will be where I inscribe the legend for this quilt. It won't be very detailed as there isn't a lot of room. Still, it will afford more room than the triangular patches I normally put in the corner on the backs of my quilts. This project has always been Time Flies in my mind. The more official title might be Time Flies Whether You're Having Fun or Not. I believe this flimsy is calling out for a border before being declared ready for quilting. However, it's time to round up some scraps to see what I can do with them for Scrap Happy Day on the 15th!

Friday, May 7, 2021

It's About Time!

From the end of October 2019 through to the end of October 2020 I made a "flight" of flying geese every week to create my second version of a diary quilt. You can see the flimsy of my first one here.  (Apparently I still have not taken a picture of the finished product.) Most weeks I chose two prints that somehow related to the experiences of that week and sewed the flying geese units in a string. Once in a while the geese were scrappy rather than consistent. When I sewed up what I thought would be the final flight of geese I turned my attention to other projects and pretty much forgot about it until recently. I have decided the time has come to bring the top to completion. 

The first step was to lay out the geese again to try to figure out how I wanted to arrange them in the quilt.

It's a good thing I kept track of what was significant each week.

A couple of blocks got misplaced during the auditioning process.

And then I sewed half the columns opposite to the way I intended them to be.

The idea is to start at the top left and follow the geese downward. At the bottom of the column you "turn the corner" and follow the geese back up to the top. You will notice there's a gap at the bottom of the rightmost column. Just room enough for another four geese. I've already made two out of scraps from the quilt I was working on in the first week of November 2020. I'd like to use one or two of the remaining spots as a label. First I have to figure out how to word said label so I know how much room it might require. A comprehensive listing would be ideal of course, but I'm not going there, even using the computer and printer. In the end it will probably be short and sweet. A reference to the little guidebook would be helpful but I don't quite know how I would accomplish that either. I've thought of a pocket into which a paper legend could be inserted. Not entirely sold on that idea though. Suggestions are welcome. I'd like to get this off the design wall as soon as possible as there's yet another baby quilt to be made!

Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Temporarily Caught Up

 So far I'm doing a pretty good job of keeping up with the #52tags project hosted by Anne Brooke. I seem to need almost a week to decide how I'm going to handle each new prompt. Since there's a new prompt every Friday it would be easy to fall behind. There have been a couple of times when I've skipped one prompt to tackle the newest one but as of this writing I'm all caught up again. 😁

The prompt for week 15 was to make a tiny 'scape, land or sea, noon or night. I struggled with this one. It took almost two weeks to get it done. The moon and clouds were easy, even fun. Creating the landscape was another matter.

Anne encouraged us to try to create depth or perspective through the use of value changes. She also encouraged us to create curves, like hills and valleys. I just couldn't get into it. In the end my goal was to just complete the tag somehow.

The following week was to use seed stitching to create negative spaces.

I had fun with this one. I find it delightfully mindless to use a variegated thread to put random stitches in cloth. 

The next prompt was another that was pretty straightforward. I didn't get to it right away though. Anne asked us to review the colors we'd used so far in our tags to see what hue might be missing. My ATC's are all over the color wheel. Finally I realized that I hadn't used any true red yet. Once we'd determined what color to use the plan was to roll up little sausages of fabric and couch them onto a base piece.

Rolling up the fabric was fiddly. They didn't always stay rolled up in spite of pins. I used a couple of strings of yarn and sari silk ribbon amongst the fabric. I tried to use different types of threads, perle cottons and stranded floss, as well as a variety of stitches. 

But before I even started the that ATC Anne revealed the latest prompt, English paper piecing teeny, tiny hexies. When I saw that my first reaction was, "No way!" Anne did say we could just make a single large hexie if we so desired, and I figured that would probably be what I would do. But some spirit of rebellion and determination took over instead. I used the folded circle method to make hexies that finish at about 5/8" across. Anne sewed hers together to create a mini panel. She laid that on top of a piece of an old quilt and boro stitched over the whole thing. I sewed seven of the nine I'd made into a flower and appliqued it on top of a piece of fabric I'd quilted. Then I added the single hexie just to fill in the blank spot. The ninth hexie was just too wonky to bother using. I may even toss it out!

 I had some vintage baby rickrack in my stash that worked well to frame out the piece. 

That takes us up to week 18 of this year. And now I have what's left of this week to rest on my laurels!

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Another Baby Quilt

It's time to start building a quilt for the baby girl Niece #2 is expecting to deliver in July. Oddly, I have not been in the mood to do any fabric shopping. So the challenge is to make something cute, or at least not ugly, from what I have available in my stash. Since her first child is a very active little boy I chose to go full-on girly for this quilt. Pink, purple, dolls and dresses, florals, whatever I could find that would work together. I also decided to make a crazy quilt this time, utilizing the stack, cut, and shuffle method.

The hard part is finding prints in my collection that are still big enough to accommodate the large squares this method requires. I'm starting with 11" squares to end up with blocks that will finish at 8.5" (9"raw). The first set I made had seven prints in the stack. I made six cuts. That was a bit much to get the rotary cutter through. For next stack I only layered up five prints and made four cuts. That resulted in more waste when I trimmed the blocks to size but not enough for me to get in a tizzy over. It's more important to me to get the greater variety of patch sizes and prints this approach creates. 

 This is where I am so far. Originally I was going to make 42 blocks. Now I'm thinking 30 will be enough. That will allow for a border treatment that may help to contain and calm the busyness in the center of the quilt. Might have to purchase yardage for that! 😊

Saturday, April 24, 2021

It's Creative Decision Making Time

Those who have been with me for a long time will know that I enjoy the simplicity of Stitch & Zip needlepoint kits. Fourteen count needlepoint canvas that has already been made up into a variety of cases. I get to do the fun part, and when I've finished all I have to do is zip the case shut and give it some steam (under a pressing cloth). 😁

Coin purses and scissor cases above, cosmetic bag size purses below (about 5" x 7").

I go for the designs that don't have a lot of detail generally. I've also created my own designs to stitch. The following examples happen to be coin purses.

Having recently completed this cosmetic-size bag of my own design...

I needed something new to keep my hands busy when my brain wasn't fully engaged. I found a couple of the coin purse kits on sale recently and bought them. I'll probably stitch one of them as proscribed by the kit contents and design but the other one had to have the colors changed in my opinion. 😉

It's not quite finished, but it won't take long to polish it off. So then the question is, what next? 

I have the other kit I just bought of course, but I also have one of the larger cases that had a blank face. My intention was to use some of the luscious autumn-hued hand dyed flosses I'd collected to stitch a pattern of leaves. I even outlined the leaves in pencil and then went over those lines with a basting stitch of sorts to make the outlines even easier to see.

The problem is, now I don't want to have to expend the mental energy that would be required to produce leaves I'd be happy with. It has been a joy to simply choose a color and stitch "flying geese" and arrows lately. What to do, what to do?