Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Vintage Thingies Thursday

Here's a whimsical non-quilty twist that I came across on the Apron Queen's blog & it appealed to the old fashioned side of me. I do enjoy vintage stuff, not that I want it all in my home but it's a delightful trip down Nostalgia Lane.
My decorating tastes are somewhat eclectic-traditional- but with a twist! Every room needs something just plain fun in it I think otherwise it's a bit too perfect & uh..... boring? IMHO!
So, here's my vintage offering for this week-suitcases, or "portmanteaux" or luggage or whatever you call them. I love these quaint reminders of a more gracious & slower paced time. Aren't they adorable? Ah, maybe it's just me!
I use them for end tables, & if I still had the third one [my sister got off with it] I could stack them, so one day I'll find another in a thrift shop or someone's garbage pile!
One of these was $3, the other free!

Today at guild I made continuous bias binding for the applique baby quilt-guess I miscalculated because I ended up with about 12 yds. & I think I only need around half of that! I figured it out first using the square root of the total area needed [calculated by multiplying perimeter of the quilt by the width of binding] & then refigured with another method to double check my numbers & decided to use the second total which was higher than the first- just didn't want to have to make another lot if I came up a wee bit short. For any of you who have made bias binding you know it is a little more work than straight grain binding but when using a stripe it is a much more effective result don't you think? I used a 42" square of the fabric.
Oh well, next time I make a baby quilt with this same colorway I will already have the binding prepared.
Tomorrow I will attach the binding to the quilt then I only need to hand sew it down to the back of the quilt & make & attach the label.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Old Tobacco Road "flimsie" & African fabrics

Tada, it is ready for quilting, & even with all those little pieces & biases it is very square & flat. I was so pleased when I measured for the borders that there was less than half an inch difference any which way!
I sewed on the small framing border & it looked unfinished, on further inspection I realised that I had failed to check Bonnie's border suggestions after completing the FG so I missed the first framing border- oh well it's unique! I went digging in my autumn toned stash & came up with only this one piece that was really large enough for 5" borders. It is a bit lighter in tone than I would have liked & it has quite a bit of green but I am working from stash so there is some compromise necessary - I am hoping too that I will have something in my backing stash to go with it. Otherwise I will need to shop the 50% off shelves at a couple of my Phx. quilt shops!
The flimsie measures about 80 x 102, is that big enough f0r a QS bed? I can never remember all the mattress dimensions but I think QS is 60 x 80 so it would just barely do for a normal mattress, one without a fat pillow top. I should have thought about that & made the outside borders 6" or more, but it's hindsight now. This quilt is too large for a QOV & so it will remain with me until the right person comes along. With that in mind I would like to make it to fit a QS bed & I might just make a wide binding that would add another couple of inches, I have enough fabric for that. At this point I have no idea how I will quilt it, some kind of all-over design maybe a leafy thing. It feels great to have it done to this point-I am less uncomfortable with UFO tops than those in pieces still though this does add another quilting project to the expanding list of tops awaiting their turn on the LA. I am expecting several tops in the mail from out of state & I have quite a few already lined up so I will be a busy LA'er once I get to Phx.

I discovered a "forgotten" stash of African theme fabrics, I am guessing upwards of 20 yards & I would love to use it up, anyone have ideas for it? I bought most of them [on sale no doubt] but just when & where I am not sure. I suspect I acquired them the summer of 2006 right before our son died when everything fell through a hole in my brain - these fabrics have been "aging" ever since in a bottom drawer downstairs in the CO. house.
The first collection I think I bought when the Montrose QS was closing, the second Kris brought back from Rwanda & I have a vague memory of purchasing the two motifs at MQS. The plan was to make quilts to raise money for our sister church in Taba, Rwanda so it would be really good if I could get to work on that this winter- I would love to have those fabrics out of my stash, they were purchased with a specific agenda & it's time I followed up.

I designed & made this African quilt & pillow for my friend Kris who makes almost annual ministry visits to Africa & to date this has been my only attempt at showcasing African style fabrics.

Last Friday we turned in our election ballots at the city hall in Ouray. Filling out the ballots was quite a chore there are so many props here in CO. this year & as I was chatting with my friend S we decided that the nefarious plan is to make it so confusing we will simply give up & pass on any decision at all! DH & I both studied all the info. on each prop but I think we were more confused after reading the "facts" than before! Then when we were actually filling in the ballots each of us had to go back & re-read every prop over again to try to figure out what we had decided! Whew, glad that is done & boy I can hardly wait till this time next week when all the political ads will go away!
They will won't they, please tell me they will!
I know that everyone is sick & tired of it so we can all at least say hurrah for Nov.4th, even though some of us will inevitably be disappointed in the end result at least we should be spared any more of those annoying ads.
Last night as I was blogging around I discovered a few new blogs, new to me anyway, & what a diversity there is of people who make quilts-some work in construction, some drive the big rigs, some ride around mostly in campers of various styles, some love cats, others raise goats & so on, it is quite fascinating the variety of talents, occupations & interests in the quilting world!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

OTR & Baby farm quilt

OK, well I do like my OTR much better now that the flying geese border is on, & I have cut another 2" border to frame out the geese that I think will finish it off nicely- that's a job for tomorrow after church.
I obviously cannot count though because here is the pile of little blocks left over after I had counted & recounted & recounted ad nauseum!
On the other hand my calculations for the FG border were more accurate & I think I have only three FG's left over that will add to my growing collection of orphan blocks. I do wish that I could finally use up all the old odds & ends of scraps but they seem to multiply like rabbits in the drawers!

The applique baby quilt is ready for binding but I have discovered that I do not have sufficient of any one of the quilt fabrics for my preferred double fold binding but I do have a perfect matching stripe that will make a great binding cut on the bias- I think that is the way to go!
It never fails that the moment I lay out a quilt on the floor Miss Button has to come over & stretch out on it-I have heard other quilters/animal lovers say that they have the same experience with their pets so anyone want to hazard a guess as to why our animals do this?
Of course the quilts will be laundered before gifting so I didn't worry about it.
The quilt is from a design by Kookaburra Cottage but as usual I had to make my own revisions- in my opinion recipes & patterns are merely suggestions [unlike the Ten Commandments!] & my imagination is inevitably drawn to additions, subtractions & embellishments! All the fabrics for the top were from my stash, the backing I purchased from thousandsofbolts . When completed the farmer girl will have lace on her coveralls & perhaps a flower on her hat? Hmmmm.....

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Old Tobacco Road

Just finished pressing the OTR, all those seams & I noticed a few I had going the wrong way but I'm not about to frog anything! So far this very scrappy quilt is not exciting me, the scrappiness is not pleasing to my eyes I think the autumn colors aren't strong enough so I'll try to emphasize those more in the border. Maybe it's the lights in the pinwheels & 4 patches, they may be too light..........? I'm hoping that once it has borders I will like it better, one hates to put so much time into a project to find the finished product less than pleasing.
No matter though I'm thinking that someone will love it, probably a wounded warrior as it will most likely be a QOV.
Tomorrow at guild I plan to work on the flying geese for the border.
The new water system is under construction in our development & our vehicle is parked about a quarter mile away at the neighbour's out of the way of all the excavators etc, so I have to run the gamut in the morning to get to the car. My DSM & projects are already loaded up this evening so at least I don't have to haul those along too.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Guild retreat

I made a major gaffe when I forgot to take essential supplies to the retreat, namely the Easy Angle ruler [which makes HST's, Half Square Triangles, really fast & easy] for my Old Tobacco Road quilt & some freezer paper for the paper pieced BOM "Singing His Praises" which is definitely an Un-Finished Object[UFO]! Fortunately for me Gale had tossed in a whimsical appliqued wall hanging pattern that occupied my time for the rest of the two days we were there. The wording on it said something lame like "proud to be a quilter" but you can see I made up my own legend which I think is way less lame! I'm thinking I will quilt the background with a McTavishing sort of fill, not sure about the border yet. I wish that applique were not so fiddly & time consuming because the results are very effective. Most of the fabrics I used were cast offs that no one else wanted so it was a very "green" project.
My OTR[Old Tobacco Road] is ready for construction now that I have all of the 388 HST's sewn into 96 pinwheels, along with about 184 Four patches & 108 "bricks" etc, & it is partially laid out on the floor downstairs so I hope that Button doesn't decide to make a bed on it before I can get that much sewn together! OTR is as you can see up close, a scrap quilt with everything but the kitchen sink in the four patches & HST's, no matter, because it all sort of blends in when pulled together with the preponderance of autumnal colored fabrics. However to my dismay I didn't bust nearly as much stash as I had hoped so there is still at least one or two-or maybe more autumn themed quilts on my list of WHIMM's[Works Hidden In My Mind] which list is, I confess, endless! I still have to make a heap of flying geese for the border, I won't have an idea just how many until the main body of the quilt is pieced & I can measure the outside edges.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

More color & more quilting

I had been down the mountain for 2 days over the weekend & returned to see such a difference in intensity of color, I am adding a couple of pics. It rained all weekend in Montrose area but the Cimmarons & Sneffels ranges got a lot of snow.

I was house-sitting on my friend's farm-just the house animals only, cats & dogs, they have someone else come to feed the horses, cattle & donkeys. The first night I "lost" the new kitten-well she began the night on my bed but was nowhere to be found in the morning. She did re-appear when I returned from Guild meeting later in the day. The second day the big dog, JR, jumped the fence 3 times, the third time somehow he managed to take the short legged ,stocky little corgi with him! She can't jump so how did she get out? Hmmmm, it's a mystery! Little miss corgi then got into more mischief-absolutely destroyed one of the TV remotes while I was I was out in the quilting studio, all in all quite the weekend & some house sitter I am!

Using Gale's Prodigy, I quilted two more laptop bags & a baby quilt & another HOB. Two more HOB quilts went out the past week to the families of Fallen Heroes, but I'm running out of ways to find these families & it's very discouraging.

I received a lovely surprise in the mail, a box from my friend Loretta with a wonderful carrier for my thread! I was complaining about keeping it all together & accessible when I travel & so she sent me this great thread tote! It is double decker & holds all my lovely Essentials threads I love it, isn't it wonderful? Thank you Loretta!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Scrap Strip Twist & BQ!

Well they're not done,done, but they are ready to quilt this weekend at Gale's -while she's chasing antelope [AKA dinner on the hoof] I'll be chasing down my UFO's! Here are the two I WILL quilt this weekend [along with a couple more laptop bags which I cut out today & must sew up tomorrow.] The Burger Queen mystery turned out quite pretty even though I thought for a while there might not be enough contrast, & I hope it may bring some cheer to one of our wounded military heroes. Bonnie's Strip Twist pattern turned out a very cute, fast & scrappy baby quilt with a piano key border & a scrap, pieced backing! Waste not want not, I am using stash, hopefully at least as fast as I add it but try as I might I cannot seem to use the scraps faster than I make them, it is a quilter's curse!
I received 4 great completed HOB quilts from the Longmont CO. guild & mailed one off today to the parents of a brave young fallen hero . 'Nuff said, you can check out his story, I simply cannot say more here.
Our weather is nice & "Fallish", temps are down & colors are up! One of my friends said "looks as if God is busy with His paint brush up there", I think He's always busy with His paint brush, just sometimes more vividly than others.
A couple more pics, the one with the mountains is from our house the other of a stand of Aspen down the road. The color changes daily, some of the Aspen are a deep rich gold now while others are still quite green. It is an artist's paradise especially right now & the traffic up our dusty county road is busy with all the sightseeing folks on their annual pilgrimmage. This morning on my way down the mountain there was a crowd of vehicles parked outside the entrance to Elk Meadows & more streaming up the county road. There was even a lady playing parking cop there-maybe they were on a Fall safari!
I love the rich carpet affect of the area below the "Unnamed" mountain, called Corbett Peak by the locals. It is "only" 13,072 ft. high, flat-top Whitehouse mountain next to it is 13,492 ft. & Mt. Sneffels just out of sight to the right is one of Colorados "fourteeners". We have already had at least 4 or 5 snowfalls on the Sneffels & Cimmaron Ranges. Fall is indeed here!