Sunday, January 15, 2017

Empty Hoop Syndrome

My hoop has been empty for quite some time, sitting quietly in the corner just waiting for a new quilt to be loaded.

Late last fall I had Roberta baste my Candied Hexagons and it too has been waiting patiently for a date with the hoop, but I just wasn't prepared to get that going over the holidays - too much on the go.

But today's the day. After a great walk in the snow I've now loaded it and I'm ready for a little playoff football and a little hand stitching. These lines of stitching are the basting - I still have to figure out how I'm going to quilt it......M

Friday, January 13, 2017

Play Day

I had the day off so I spent most of it with Anne showing her how to put together the Christmas star table toppers that I made for the Holly Bazaar.

I had a pile of 3.5"  and 2" white blocks left over so she started with that, laying them out to get the colour distribution that she wanted. The first one that I made a couple of years ago took me forever because I only did one star block at a time and then figured out the rest of the colour placements as I went. Live and learn.

Once the layout was set she got busy sewing the start points.

She sewed and I pressed and trimmed and before long we had rows to be assembled into blocks.

Ta da! Her first topper. She's tickled with it and I'd say it's an excellent first effort. It was the first piece to adorn her new design wall and it will stay there as she ponders how to quilt it....M

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Clean-up in Aisle Five

A clean-up of my cutting table was in order if there's any sewing to be done on my machine this year, so I took the plunge. Turns out that much of what was at the bottom of the pile were red, cream and green scraps. Since I don't have a quilt that I'm piecing by machine right now the time was right to trim those scraps into strips and squares rather than just shuffle them out of sight and into a storage bin.

So I cut as much as I could into 1.5" strips and squares and then started sewing little white/gold and red four-patches.

Most of the strips were on the short side so I'd find a relatively long strip in one colour and just keep feeding different sized strips of the second colour on top til I had a string that I could trim into 1.5" lengths.

Anything that was the wrong size or the wrong colour (green) ended up on a new pile...

simultaneously becoming a pile of Christmassy crumb blocks, roughly 5" square; they still need to be trimmed.

I've worked my way through all of the cream bits on the table so my cream scrap bin came out and I found more to play with; then I did the same with the red bin. I've also found a red jelly roll that I bought years ago on eBay so it will eventually kick in to support the cause.

It would have been easy just to take all of those scraps and pitch them and make a clean start but then I wouldn't have a lovely little pile of 70 four-patches, with the promise of more to come, would I? They will finish off at 2" square. Its a relaxing way to spend time at the machine and a fun way to get to the bottom of some of those scrap baskets....M

Friday, January 06, 2017

The Stars Come Out

Betty and I had a good laugh when we went digging in my sewing room for a piece of blue to finish off a quilt/duvet cover that she is sewing for my favourite nephew (sorry, I wasn't smart enough to get a pic for you) because it is such a disaster zone. At least it was. Piles are gradually being returned to shelves and surprises are revealing themselves in the process.

Last November, in a fit of 'lets-just-do-one-more-thing-for-the-Holly-Bazaar-even-though-I-have-no-time' I made a batch of 6" stars thinking that they would become potholders. Well, I found them in a pile in the sewing room, so that clearly didn't happen.

They have found a temporary home on the design wall until I decide what to do with them. Maybe I'll get a head start on my bazaar sewing for this year and make them up right away, or maybe they are the start of something else - they would make a nice round in a medallion quilt. Who knows, but it was a nice surprise to find them in my 'piling system'....M