Monday, December 1, 2014

Thanksgiving Weekend

This Thanksgiving weekend was a good time to do some machine quilting and binding.

And to have some turkey, of course!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Vacation Quilting

The beach! (Ignore potato cannon)
We took a mini-vacation to Grayton Beach last weekend, and I brought my quilting with me. I love the beach in winter. In between walking on the beach and socializing with friends, I cut and sewed triangles for a new quilt. It was only a 2 1/2 day trip, but I got a lot done. The secret to vacation quilting is prep. Before I left, I picked a pattern, pulled fabrics from my stash, ironed them, and cut fabric strips. The last thing you want to do is haul a lot of yardage on a road trip. I pared my sewing supplies down to a canvas tote bag of supplies and a portable sewing machine.
Here is my kit (sewing machine not shown):
I have an old rotary cutting mat that warped (they do that when exposed to heat); I glued it down to plastic cutting board so it lies flat and won't bend and it is now my travel cutting mat. I also brought a couple of rulers, rotary cutter (forgot an extra blade, have to remember that next time), scissors, seam ripper, extra thread, fabric strips, calculator, mini-trash receptacle, and the pattern book. I skipped the iron and ironing pad this trip--I knew I wouldn't be gone long enough to need them. Most hotels have irons in the room, but we were staying at a cabin in a state park, and I was pretty sure they wouldn't have one (they didn't).

Here is the pile of half-square triangles I pieced:

I may save the rest of the project for my next trip. I have a couple of other projects in the works that I've been pulling fabric for.

Thursday, May 22, 2014


So, the other day I got an email from a family member offering me this beautiful featherweight! Naturally I told her I would adopt this machine. All featherweights should have good homes.

She doesn't have a name yet, but she has already been to the shop for a tune-up. I haven't had time to stitch on her yet, but that is on the agenda for this weekend. I am getting the itch to start another quilt. Of course, I haven't finished the LAST quilt. But when has that ever stopped me before?

Friday, May 2, 2014

Quilt done, and another in progress

"Two Penny Lane" is done and off to a good home. This one sat under the sewing table for a couple of years waiting for me to figure out how to quilt it. The pattern came from one of the Nickel Quilts books. My husband says the colors don't look like mine. There are more pastels than I usually use. I cut up a lot of my fat quarters for this one to get rid of them. I don't buy fat quarters anymore because I realized that I rarely use them. There are some pretty ugly novelty fabrics in this quilt, but you can't tell from here!

This a background audition for my Road to Florida block, Castillo de San Marcos. It is my own block based on the fort at St. Augustine. I made extras and decided to assemble them into a queen-sized quilt. I thought I was going to use a blue background on it. But sometimes when you play around with different fabrics something unexpected happens, and and purple paisley it is. I got stalled on this project since I was lazy and didn't square up my blocks (without a doubt my LEAST favorite part of the quilting process), so I've had to do some ripping to get everything to line up reasonably well. I will finish the top this weekend (except for the borders; one of them will be pieced, so it will take longer).

I am still deciding if I will put batting in this one or make it into a summer quilt (without batting). I got some wool batting for Christmas last year that I haven't tried out yet, but when you live this far south, for most of the year batting is unnecessary; I switched to a summer quilt last weekend.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Quilt Studio Revamp

The other day I turned to my husband and said: "Honey, I've been thinking..." The words no man ever wants to hear. Because he knows a dreaded home improvement project is in his future. In this case, I decided I wanted a bigger design wall in my quilt studio. Which is about 11' square. I've had a 4' by 8' design wall behind the door for several years, but it is too small for any but the smallest of wallhangings. I need more design space. In a small room, with one wall mostly taken up by a closet and another by a window, there weren't a lot of options, but I now have an additional 8' by 8' design wall. Here is the space before (an armchair has already been moved out to make space. I only used it to store fabric on anyway.):

And here is the space after (2 sheets of rigid insulation board, 6 yards of craft felt, a staple gun and some wall anchors to move the floating shelves to another wall):

I got rid of some stuff, and I am still trying to sort and rearrange things, which is why I haven't gotten any quilting done this week. But my design space is larger, so I am happy!