Image

Winter Stargazing

Stargazing in winter might seem ideal as you have more uninterrupted viewing hours.  However, shivering in a Kansas field doesn’t sound like best way to take in the stars.  I prefer to quilt! At least that hobby keeps us warm in the 60 degree winters…

Was anyone else part of the warm spell last week?  My kids were running around outside in sweatshirts complaining that they were hot.  Sigh.  It didn’t stay warm, so they are back inside, bouncing off the walls and each other.  We had to declare a moment of silence this evening for our sanity.

Last weekend was so productive!  Since the kids were enjoying an unseasonably warm day and my husband was working on a project, I was able to quilt.
(Pepper helped.)
img_0339

img_0365

Making up for lost time I managed to longarm a Minecraft quilt for the school auction, create a log cabin paper piece pattern for my friend, and finish a few small blocks and projects.  I’m saving some of the other projects for later posts, so no pics, but you can see the Winter Star block from the Farmgirl Vintage book.

img_0368

One thing great about the Farmgirl patterns is that you rarely work with bias.  Take the star point for instance.  Instead of cutting parallelogram pieces on the bias, you start with a rectangle and sew two squares on, similar to creating quick half square triangles.    The bias is never exposed, so your block stays nice and squared up.   I love this!

If you only sew the desired line, you end up with triangle waste on each end.  However, if you are tricky you could create smaller half square triangle blocks for your next scrappy quilt by making a second seam line 1/2″ away from the first, and trim between the two stitch lines.  I really should do this more often!  They might be handy in scrappy or mini quilts.

I said no pictures, but I’d better share this mini that I finished from a BOM club my Mom has gifted me.  🙂  Prairie Point Quilt and Fabric Shop has a fun Tiny Dresden BOM program that started this month.  The pattern is for hand applique dresden with embroidered sayings.  Of course, I love my machines, so tried to figure out how to beautifully finish this mini using a scanner, custom digitizing and embroidery, and longarm quilting. Alas, the buttons were too small, so I had to hand stitch those on!   In February, I will give a run down on how my experiment worked and what I would do differently next time.

IMG_0370.jpg

 

Image

Farmer’s Market

The holiday weekend has proven to be sew wonderful!   While my children (and husband) chose to swim at the city pool, I stayed home to quilt.  It was only 70 degrees, for goodness sake.  They are doing good to get me in the pool when it is 90 degrees!

I managed to finish quilting my Mother’s new “Farmer’s Market” quilt that she did as a BOM, in 2015, with Prairie Point Quilt and Fabric Shop.   I think that the top may be made with Kansas Troubles, Sunflower Song Fabrics.  I have to say,I LOVE IT.  I really love how the blue in this line, used in the borders, helped set off the blocks.  The backing was a cotton sateen.  I have never used this as a backing before.  It has a shiny finish.

I was nervous to quilt the shiny cotton.  When I was selecting thread, nothing seemed quite right.  I was playing around, and found one of my Floriani embroidery threads that matched perfectly.  Believe it or not, it was called “Harvest”.  Right now, my favorite thread supplier is Red Rock Threads. I wasn’t too worried about using a polyester, as I used a Poly Cotton batting. The Floriani also had more sheen than my other quilting threads, so I decided to take the plunge.  I am so glad that I did.  I quilted it using an E2E pattern by Nancy Haacke, Wasatch Quilting called “New Beginnings”.   I love her description of how she selected the name.  She said she chose it as a symbol that change is inevitable in our lives.

I loved the pattern because it meshes classic feathers with some wild whimsy.  Peaking through the feathers is a flounce of pearls and wild grasses or cat tails!  I used to love picking and running my fingers over the fuzzy cat tails that would sneak out before mowing, or around rocks and railroad ties that didn’t quite get “weed wacked”.  After all, I was pretty terrible at mowing my parents yard.  I’m so grateful my husband does all of that at our home now!

IMG_8689.jpg

I hope my Mother loves her quilt.  This one didn’t get custom quilting, but the design, which took an hour per pass, really looks great with her extraordinary piecing!  She pays such close attention to detail.  I’m glad she made this one for her home.  The picture here won’t do it justice.  Maybe, once it is bound, we can get a better photograph.  It was raining and wet all weekend, so I had to take a picture inside with my extra special quilt holders in the background!

It looks like the rain will give us a day off, so I imagine we will be playing today.  I have a few more blocks to show you, but might post those later this week.

PEACE and HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY! 

IMG_8695.jpg

Note:  The cotton sateen is more difficult to “Frog” if you find you have any stitches that need corrected.  Be extra careful not to snag it and ruin the pretty sheen.  

I am not an affiliate of any of the companies linked above.  I am simply sharing some of my favorite suppliers and manufacturers to date.