Saturday, June 15, 2019

Prepped for Quilting

Anticipating a few hours in the car this weekend, I prepped the little quilt just recently finished - The Simple Friendships II Mini.

I dug out a scrap piece of batting and scrounged around for a suitable backing. This backing is quite old - Thistle Creek by Sheri Strole.

 I used 505 Spray Baste to layer the parts together after pressing and stretching carefully.

I knew I wanted to do the Baptist Fan design for quilting, so I located my template and then decided to mark it with a tool that has some history. I gave this Pounce marking tool to Grandma many, many years ago. Marking quilts had become difficult for her in her later years, so I gave her the Pounce hoping it would ease the job. However, she didn't care much for how much dust it created. When she cleared out her quilting stuff, the Pounce came back to me.

And, I agree, it does create a good bit of dust, but the speed! I think I can put up with a few clouds of chalk dust in favor or a super-fast marking method.

The last picture above shows 3 strands of quilting floss - which color to quilt with? I decided on the darkest (top) color.

Happy Saturday! And happy quilting, Friends!

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Speaking in Frankfort

Took my little quilt show on the road yesterday - all the way to Frankfort. A couple months ago, I was asked to come talk about my quilts to a women's group in Frankfort. I agreed, even though I really had no idea what I would say or share. Given a chance to talk about quilts, though, seemed like a relatively easy thing to do! Getting me to stop talking about quilt is the trick! *hah!*

The event was held at the Frankfort Presbyterian Church fellowship hall. Tables were set for about 50 to have a luncheon prepared by a local caterer and member of the hosting church. I learned that a long-standing tradition in Frankfort is for the area churches to take turns hosting a monthly (unsure - maybe less often) Christian Women's Luncheon. What a great idea to promote fellowship throughout the village and surrounding communities. Ladies had RSVP'd so that the luncheon committee could plan for seating and meals. And the meal - oh, my! Hostess and caterer Patty prepared what she called a Brown Derby Casserole - chicken-based, with a type of breading and gravy, very tasty. I will definitely look around for a recipe. That along with a salad and roll for the main course, followed by a dessert of fresh fruit-cup topped with a ladyfinger - all tasty and very pretty in its presentation.

I arrived a bit early to get all my quilts and quilt tops arranged up front for an easy display. Above are the finished quilts that I took.

I mostly took quilt tops - I had such a hard time deciding which ones to take. You will recognize most of these, as I have recorded the making of all of them here on this blog. It was fun pulling them out, rehanging them on hangers, then displaying them for others to see. It's as if I am refamiliarizing myself with old friends when I see some of these! Weird.

The collection above represents the UFO challenge I gave myself in 2017 - that ultra-productive year of finishes. I talked about how making a goal of finishing a UFO each month kept me motivated, and how sewing/quilting with friends also motivates me and holds me accountable for finishing projects. I talked about what sorts of things cause a project to go into UFO-land. Mistakes are my number one reason - if I mess up something, then I am likely to stop working, fold that thing up and hide it away. Other causes for UFOs involve running out of a necessary fabric, or being stumped on a finish. Or, just plain growing tired of something and wanting to move on to something new. I have a thing for liking to start things. Finishing is an entirely different story. *ahem*

I took these three smaller quilts to illustrate that some of my time is spent on little things - it's not always about bed-size quilts.

I'd been told to talk for about 30 minutes, and honestly, I have no idea if I held to that or not. I suspect I went over, but hopefully not by much. And I had quilts draped all over the place! Above, are my racks of finished quilts mixed up with some of the quilt tops.

Across the way, the podium was piled high with some of the UFO challenge quilt tops. Looks like a tangled mess, doesn't it?

And the front table also had quilts strewn every-which-way. Two ladies stayed afterwards and helped me fold and rehang everything for packing up. Whew! I appreciated their help! You know how long that would have taken had I done it all alone. Below, new acquaintance Karen speaks with my dear friend Sharon (one of the Frankfort Girls; she gave me the Tin Lizzie long arm, remember?) prior to our clean-up efforts. Thank you, sweet ladies!

It was a totally fun event. I appreciated the opportunity to share my hobby, and to meet ladies from around my area. In her welcome, our hostess talked about how all the various events of our lives - happy times and sad, the ordinary and the extraordinary - combine to make the whole of our lives, like a quilt! Yesterday's luncheon became another very enriching part of my life, and I think, so, too, for those in attendance.

Happy Quilting, Friends!

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Tag Sale and Weathervane

On Monday Sharon was here for a day of sewing. Her new schedule for sewing makes Monday our day now; we had been sewing on Thursdays. Anyway, she brought some old fat eighths of a 3 Sisters line of fabric called Double Chocolate. Yeah, it's really old stuff, but still absolutely gorgeous. Sharon said she was "playing" - using beautiful fabric in a fun pattern, Tag Sale. She wanted to cut a bit, then sew a bit, and enjoy her day of sewing.

Sounds like a perfect recipe to me! Here's the pretty results of her day. Quilt blocks fresh off the machine, stacked and ready for more.

The red fabric in this line clearly needed to be featured - I mean, look at that color! Since Tag Sale (older pattern by Carrie Nelson) calls for 5 randomly placed little stars, this is how Sharon has decided to use the luscious red. Looks fantastic.

So while Sharon played with Tag Sale, I finished a quilt top that I'd been working on over the weekend. For simply years, I have had this fabric grouping set aside for a quilt. I did not buy the fabrics in this grouping at the same time; they just all ended up in my stash, and over time, found themselves coming together for some as-yet undetermined quilt.

Also, for simply years, I have longed to make a certain quilt in this book I bought in 2000-2001-ish.

Finally, the ah-ha moment arrived, where I just knew my grouping would work for this pattern called Lavender Fields:

I cut it all out on Friday night; sewed the first 2 blocks on Saturday; did a bit of chain piecing on Sunday. When Sharon came on Monday, I was ready to make the remaining 10 blocks! It came together so fast! I truly was giddy with anticipation as I added the sashing and cornerstones! Now it just needs its borders, which I plan to attach in the next day or so (it's supposed to be rainy, i.e., perfect!).

I am over-the-moon pleased with how this came out. It looks nothing like the pattern, Lavender Fields, but the fabrics work so well in this design. The fact that I only needed 12 blocks was a definite bonus, as was the fact that the pieces are so big. After than teeny little mini-quilt (see previous post), this has been a welcome change of pace!

I need to get cleaned up and head out to a speaking engagement! Yes, the ladies over at the Frankfort Presbyterian Church want to see my quilts and listen to me rattle on about them. Can you imagine?!? I have about 50 quilts and quilt tops pulled out to take - all to talk about in a 30-minute program. Hah! I think I might be over-prepared! *wink*

Happy Quilting, Friends!

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Simple Friendships 2 Quilt Along

Yesterday, author and fabric designer Kim Diehl posted her final installment of her mini-quilt-along on Instagram and Facebook. It has been a fun ride, and I am happy to show you my finished top today.

Every Monday for the past 5 weeks, we have been given instructions for a couple of blocks. It has been fun using her signature fabrics/colors as well as learning a few tips and tricks that she has shared along the way.

Last week while we sewed at Terry's, most of us Frankfort girls worked on these blocks. We decided early on that we would be a mini-group doing a mini-quilt-along for a mini-quilt. Sounds good to me!

I have a tub-full of remaining fabric, as this barely made a dent in the little Kim Diehl collection I've hoarded. I believe I will peruse her books - I have several - to see what I want to make with the rest. I may have a hard time making up my mind, as just about all her designs appeal to me.

Next up for this mini-quilt, is spray-basting and big-stitch hand quilting. I believe I can add that to the growing number of projects for my baseball-watching evenings.

To read more about the quilt-along just finished, visit either site above for directions over the past five weeks. The patterns are all in her book Simple Friendships II.

Happy Quilting, Friends!

Saturday, June 8, 2019

Productive Friends

Sewing all week at Terry's was productive for all of us. The last post showed off my own stuff; today's will show you a good portion of everyone else's. I will dispense with words, mostly, and just show pictures.

Becky's Projects
For sure, all of these were not done this week, but are very recent mini-quilts of Becky's. She did make some Simple Friendships blocks, but had taken them home on the day I was photographing.

Helen's Blocks
Helen made most of her Simple Friendship blocks this week. Here are the ones I took pics of.

Jan's Projects
Jan had her Simple Friendship blocks done ahead of time, so she worked on this handkerchief quilt at least one day.

Sheryll's Projects
I have both Sheryll's  blocks for Simple Friendships and her other projects for the week - Moda Love in 2 sizes - Mini Charm and Charm.

Terry's Projects
Terry made her SF blocks, which I don't have pictured, and some cutting of kits. What I can show you from Terry is her newly tidied sewing room!

So, in case you hadn't figured, we all decided to save our efforts for Kim Diehl's quilt-along from her Simple Friendships II book to work on this week. At some point during the week, most all of us completed the blocks, I believe. Monday is the final day of the QAL, so we will soon be showing off our finishes.

Hope you are finding some time to make something fun and beautiful!
Happy Quilting, Friends!