Friday, February 25, 2011

Quilting Friday: Wonky Shoo Fly Section Basted

The class room was filled to the brim with people today when I arrived.  The basting tables and hallway tables were all being used too.  So I went home to prepare my quilt sandwich.  Since I was there I also put it on the bed to remind myself of the plan for the Wonky Shoo Fly quilt.  It's going to be nice.  I got another section 5 by 4 blocks set up - then drove back to classroom.  Pretty much everyone was gone - so I was able to baste on the good table....

So now I have three sections ready to quilt - so that will be my next project.

Because I lost time and momentum with the extra driving I did not do any sewing on FBP, BL, or the charity blocks.  So that will need to be for next week's class....


Bought 2 yards of white on white.


Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Paper Piecing: Frog and Rabbit

I'm still not loving paper piecing, but I am finding myself drawn to it... especially since I said I'd find around a dozen animal blocks for Friday's Block Party.

Frog block

Tangram Rabbit block (untrimmed)

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

March BlockLotto: Disappearing Red and White Four-Patch

The directions are here:

Examples of blocks are here:

Between today and yesterday I have seven blocks completed! I've done in three sets of cutting and sewing - taking less time to complete each block.  I think the secret is having the fabrics cut and ready.

Only five are for the BlockLotto - the remaining ones (with duplicate reds) are going to be sent to Clare for her charity project.

: )

(Photo and links added March 2, 2011)

Monday, February 21, 2011

Smaller Projects to Finish

I'm doing a good job of keeping up with my sewing projects (not doing bookkeeping or cleaning or exercise though)....

I'm doing:
  • Monthly BlockLotto Blocks - up to 9 of these each month
  • Weekly Friday's Block Lotto - one a week (odd weeks they are Hetty's selection for traditional blocks, even weeks I'm getting to pick patterns.  So far animals are the theme - this week we did a paper pieced block but so far no one else has jumped on board to post a finished block.)
  • On-going basting section and quilting each block sampler style - my bed sized Wonky Sho Fly
  • Charity blocks/quilts - aiming to do something each quarter
But even though this is a lot for me to be doing, I do not have any finished projects here in the house.

So I'm thinking I need to find some little quilting projects to do that can be used here.
  • Potholders - I would also be practicing putting on binding.
  • Apron
  • Table runners - would be very pretty to have - especially if they would protect the table from hot serving plates!
  • Bed runner - would be a quicker way to get something quilted in the bedroom!
  • Pillows - we don't have any for the sofa now...
  • Lap Quilts - it's been cold would have been nice to have a few to pull out.

I also have a short list of gifts I would like to make - I'm thinking they will need to be from the little quilting list of projects!

Friday, February 18, 2011

FBP - Week 8 - Paper Pieced Camel

Missing the ears and eye.
This week we are doing a paper pieced pattern for a Camel!

There is a link to the pattern from this webpage:

The cover sheet for the pattern - with an example block:

The pattern uses two colors and is divided into several sections.

I hadn't planned on suggesting this block, but after doing the patchy heart I had a bunch of scraps and I thought doing a paper pieced block would help me make use of those bits of fabric.

I haven't really done paper piecing before - looking at these videos helped me out:

Leah Day - For the beginner
TimbleArt - Adds a few more tips
Crafty Gemini - Adds much more detail

  1. Print the pattern the size you would like - I suggest at least two copies!  I printed mine so it was 10 inches - so I had to bring it into an editing program so I could divide it and print on two sheets of paper (so I would get the exact size that I wanted.) Note:  For my 10.5 unfinished block I should have set it to print to be 9.75 or maybe even 9.5 - when I sew my block to the next block the seam will intersect with the tail, rear leg, and be really near the face.....
  2. Notice there are several groups in the pattern (head, neck, body, and legs) - cut the pattern apart at these lines - remember you will need to extend the lines by .25 inch so when you join them together they will fit! Along the outside of the entire block I added additional fabric to be sure to have enough fabric.
  3. There are just two colors to use in this pattern. So that part is easy. I marked the pieces where the camel would be to help me keep track of things though.  I used Kona Cotton solids so I did not have to worry about front and back side of fabric.
  4. I goofed when I was making the tail and had to do it twice.  Because I had used the tighter stitches I couldn't pick it out and reuse the fabric, so the second time I basted things, checked to be sure it was correct, then when back and sewed with the tight stitches.  Still there were a couple of places that that I didn't have the fabric placed correctly.  I just added extra fabric where needed (so I have additional seams).
Paper piecing isn't as much fun as I thought it would be, but perhaps after doing a couple it will get easier and I'll be able to do more detailed projects.

To take some of the mystery of paper piecing patterns
How to Draw a Paper Pieced Pattern in PhotoShop Video 1 of 2 Video 2 of 2

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Letters and Cookies

I finished up some pieced letters tonight after my Valentine's Dinner with Be -

They are for a charity project one of my online friends, Clare,  has organized.  She asks for 8.5 inch squares with the letters spelling 'love'.  Can be one letter per square or all in one block, but must be with red and white fabric.

The cookies in the photo are my gift to Be and Al for Valentine's Day - thought they made the picture look better!

Valentine's Day Almond Cookies

1 box of yellow cake mix
1 can of amond paste (the goopy kind)
2 eggs
a little oil (probably 1/4 cup) and vanilla and almond extract
mix until combined.

Put in the frig to stiffen the dough up.

Put in mounds on cookie sheet lined with parchment.  Top with sliced almonds. (I used my cookie scoop that Ba sent me!)

Bake at 350 for about 15 minutes or the edges are starting to turn color.

Remove from pan and let cool until they stiffen up a bit, then transfer off the paper to cooling rack.

These are wonderfully chewy, but have really nice crisp edges too!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

BlockLotto - February 2011 - String Hearts

The directions are here:

Examples of other blocks sewn are here:

The first block I made wasn't correctly done - see the frown?

It would be fun to make a pillow cover and have one frowning heart and one happy heart - could be a secret signal for the marriage bed!

The directions say to use any color for the strings, but if I make any more I'll only use medium and light fabric.  Since the background is dark, dark colors there needs to be more contrast.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Quilting Friday: BL Hearts and Basting

I was all prepared to make my Block Lotto and Friday Block Party hearts today - but I goofed and made my first heart so instead of having the fabric in the shape of a V it was an upside down - frowning heart....

So I went for lunch and when I came back I decided to baste another section of the Wonky Shoo Fly quilt.  (5 x 2)

So it wasn't as successful as last week's sewing session, but I did get a start on things.

Thursday, February 10, 2011


Mailed BlockLotto blocks:
$1.56 to Ontario
$1.56 to Weaverville NC
Total $3.12

Sunday, February 6, 2011

WSF - FWQ Sampler - Flame Key (Beg)

The directions are clear - I think this one will be easy to do.  I just have to watch my speed so I do not break the thread.
Front - Flame Key
It would have helped if I had a better idea of what a flame actually looks like...  But what I did was easy - didn't take very long to do too.
Back - Flame Key

Once I finished it I was in a place to do the stitch in the ditch around three wonky shoo flys - so I am actually finished with this section of the quilt as you go...

Finished Section of Wonky Shoo Fly Quilt - Front
Finished Section of Wonky Shoo Fly Quilt -Back

WSF - FMQ Sampler - Curvy Key (Beg)

I had to trace this pattern after watching the pattern, it was a little hard for me to understand how to do the stacking rows.  But it looks like it will be relatively easy to do.
Front- Curvy Key

Yep, it was easy to do.  My second to last row got larger, I think because I was thinking it could be my last row if I did it right, but I had to go back and add some little stitching for the last year anyway.  It doesn't look too bad....  I think this will be a pattern I use again..!  My bobbin ran out right as I started the last little extra stitching so that was a bother - but no thread breaks other than that!
back - Curvy Key

WSF - FMQ Sampler - Radio Static (Beg)

The directions are clear.  I thought I would be able to do the stacking without twisting the fabric.
Front Radio Static

I broke a needle and the thread broke about three times while I was doing my little example block.  It's been a while since I have been doing this and  I didn't realize that I was really supposed to start at the top of the line - I moved it down as it appeared at the beginning of the video.  So there is a little bit without any stitching, but when I go back I can probably add something if it looks really out of place.

This really was a beginning FMQ pattern I think - just have to be careful about not going up into the previous row of points, but even if you do it doesn't look bad.
back - Radio Static

Friday, February 4, 2011

Quilting Friday: WSF Sampler

WSF = Wonky Shoo Fly  (in this case the BlockLotto blocks I won last year!)

I went to the 9 am - 3 pm quilting class offered thru San Diego Adult Education.  This time prepared with my sewing machine and what was needed to continue on my quilt as you go wonky shoo fly quilt.  I already had 16 squares sewn together so I just had to bast them and then I used a walking foot to go around each block and to define the shoo fly designs.  Had to wait in line to get to the basting table - next week I will be prepared though to do some FMQ in the blocks if I have to wait for the table again!  Feels great to be back to that project!

The demo today was making a pillow cover - but I didn't hear that she was doing the demo as I was in the hallway...  The other ladies said they liked it as they could easily replace the covers and change up the look in their rooms,

FBP - Week 6 - Chicken

This week is is my turn again to post the Friday's Block Party block.

The original chicken pattern is from Sew Inspired blog - her darling block is 7 x 8. Click to see her fabrics!

10.5 square

However, the rest of my blocks are 10.5 square....

Originally I was thinking of of following the pattern but then adding strips to make it 10.5, but then I drew the blocks out and decided instead to change the size of things....

Original on the right with extra background to make it 10.5 inches square.

Body = 7 x 8 and 2.5 x 2.5
Comb = (2) 3.5 x 4
Beak = 1.5 x 1.5
Background =  2.5 x 2.5 for the rear of the body, 1.5 x 1.5 for the front of the body, 2 x 7 (to put the beak in), 1.5 x 7 (for behind the tail), top part I cut 4 x 13 (first I fit the tail on, then sewed the comb down, second I cut 1.5 strip and put it behind the tail so it would line up when the top was sewn on). Had an inch or so left over but it got mixed up with my other leftovers before I measured it (sorry).

* Has the comb of the rooster, but the tail of a hen?  Actually if I had looked at this video before I finished the block I would have made the comb a little smaller! Here are some other webpages with information on chickens.

So far we have made these animals: elephant, standing cat, and chicken!