Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Miss Jean's legacy

   I found a small table topper in the cabinet when I was putting away the stack of quilts from the quilt show display.  It brought back some sweet memories from about 20-25 years ago.

  Jean was a friend and guild member who was a prolific quilter, full of fun, grew beautiful irises, and always had a smile on her face.  Her signature "take and go project" was  usually in her tote to keep her hands occupied.  She taught her technique many times over the years at workshops and meetings.

  What made this special is that it is reversible.....the back is the same as the front.  The corner is flipped over in this photo.  And it is suppose to be stitched together by hand.  Unfortunately, not mine, although it do have some hand quilting in the muslin areas.  I used  the machine buttonhole stitch to join the finished hourglass units.

 I no longer have the instructions for the technique but I have the special memory of Jean teaching us how to create these blocks.    This little topper is going on my thread cabinet...sweet and cherished.

  We lost Miss Jean a couple of years ago.  She left a legacy among those who knew her.   Fabric and thread  bind lives and loves together.
Happy stitching.
UPDATE:   Thanks to Vivian who let me know the name as shown in Quilter's Newsletter Magazine 1998.  It is called Reversible Quilt as you Go block.  Thanks, Vivian.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

News and such

Some good news, and some not so good news.

   First, the good news.    Only 2 more weeks of PT and they will graduate me!  The third evaluation this week was good, and no falls/grabs/or tilts in the dreaded balance box!!   My vestibular system-----the sensory system that contributes to the sense of balance and spatial orientation---- is almost back to normal.  That is big good news as it was not working 2 months ago!  I will have exercises to do at home and have the option to return after the first of the year if problems develop or I want more training for balance.

   Second good news from the nerve conduction tests......no damage in legs/feet found.  I still have the numbness from feet to waist, but can expect to someday have some feeling return.  I know those are big "ifs/unknowns", yet it gives me hope for some semblance of normal.

  The not so good news was also from the nerve conduction study.  I almost lost it when Dr. Jain said surgery for my hands......carpel tunnel with muscle loss in the right hand is severe.  The left hand is moderate.  So here comes another round of referrals and visits.  If the surgery can be done as out patient with local anesthesia, I will consider it.  I don't relish it, but have taken a couple days to get my mind around it.  

On to sewing news.....
I decided to border the small quilt of circles after all.  A narrow dark blue strip with a tonal beige print will finish it up for quilting.  Unless I decide to add applique to the border....still thinking on that.

  A couple more pineapple blossom blocks were finished too.

Sir Old Man brought the begonia in last night as the temps dropped to 42 degrees.  The photo is not great, but it is a beautiful salmon color.  Robin and his cleaning crew gifted it to me in August when I returned home.  It has been a prolific bloomer and I home to keep it going this winter.

   Not to be out done are the mums brought to me by Becky and family.  This  is almost 24''  across and the blooms are just beginning to fade.

  Sir Old Man took me to the J store for flannel.    I have some sewing to do for Becky's daughter.....mastectomy pillows.   She is only 26 and carries the genetic gene for a very bad breast cancer.  My heart breaks for this wonderful family, so I jumped at the chance to help with pillows.  If you care to send prayers, they would be gratefully appreciated.

  Enough for now.....I need some machine time today.  Happy stitching.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Friday Finds.....October style

From Pat Sloan

   Pumpkins are on the vine, and all over the place right now.  
Pat Sloan is offering this cute block pattern...she made her's white.  The post is here for this Splendid Sampler block.    My idea for it was as a mug rug, or on the ends of a table topper/runner.  It is simple enough to enlarge the pattern and mix up beautiful fall colors.

Martingale - Top Your Table (Print version + eBook bundle):

 This is a Kim Diehl pattern from book published by Martingale, Top Your Table.    The book is on sale right now :)
  You can't go wrong with her designs or patterns, and the colors are always so special.  

Hill Country Quilter: Quilting Aids:
From Hill Country Quilter

   This tip was stolen/borrowed from  special blogging friend,  from Mary at Hill Country Quilter.
  Mary shared her tip to keep quilts from falling off the edge of the table and causing drag......dreaded drag that weights down your stitching movement.  She uses a sit down machine like I do, but with a set of bookends (from the thrift store) attached via large binder clips to the table edge.  Brilliant!!!  
I am sure I have a set of those bookends somewhere.
  Be sure to read the whole post.....if you need a needle threader.  I hit the grocery store and found the GUM product for threading dental floss.....it works great as a needle threader.  With my vision changing, I need help to thread the Featherweight.  The floss threaders work perfectly.  Thanks Mary for these ideas. 

Pumpkin Pecan Cobbler...cake on the top, hot caramel sauce on the bottom!! Fall dessert central.

One more pumpkin pin.......a sweet treat/recipe for the season.  Pumpkin pecan cobbler sounds yummy and looks so good.  I am glad I picked up pumpkin puree at the store this week because this is on my to do list for the weekend.    This recipe is what my mother used to call  a pudding cake.

  As always, please pin from the original source.
Cooler weather this weekend.....finally.  Happy stitching.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Fall blocks

  What says fall better than colorful leaves, pumpkins and geese!

   Pumpkin blocks to go with the leaves from Carole at From My Carolina  Home .  Another couple of leaf blocks were finished too.

And geese......colorful geese.  If you have been following my Pinterest boards, you probably noticed all the flying geese quilts I have been pinning.    I caught Bonnie's quilt-cam yesterday afternoon and did some cutting of scraps.  Then I sewed a few test units to see how they looked.

   So in an hour I whipped out this huge stack of geese parts.....large and small.  And if I get tired of geese they can become HSTs in two sizes.
 I am debating on the design layout....
I have two I am wrestling with.  Of course, I might have enough scraps for both of them.

   Oh, yeah.....I did not use the rotary cutter for these.  Life is too short for dull blades, and aching hands.  I broke down and claimed an early birthday present.   Sir Old Man did the initial test drive and proclaimed it safe and easy enough for me to use.    (Just wait until the apple peeler gets here that I ordered......he will get to crank that one.)

  I probably won't get much done this week in the sewing room.  I have another PT evaluation this week, as well as the nerve conductivity test on Friday.  The results came back from the neurologist that I have the antibody against the intrinsic factor for B-12......that means this condition is permanent and B-12 shots are forever due to the auto-immune disorder of pernicious anemia.  I expected as much, and accept what is to be.  So if an Accuquilt ---or any other tool----makes it easier for me.....go for it.

  In January, I claimed "Enjoy" as my word for the year.  This small  banner hangs on the design wall right in front of me as I sew.  I enjoy every minute in there.....and every minute of life.    I have some finds to share on Friday......till then, happy stitching.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Finished runner

  I finished up the runner.....quilted and bound with pieced together leftover binding strips.  I like using up those pieces.  I call it a waste not technique.
   As a matter of fact, the plumes were cut from mostly left over fusible backed leftovers too.  With all the patterns and fabrics used in the center strips, I did not have to worry if anything matched.

   You may remember the full quilt I made for a friend that I called Plume Crazy.   This is a smaller version of that quilt.

 For me it's a good size to practice my FMQ skills, and have a finished project.

   This one can be a great table runner, or a door banner.   I like that option.   The finished size is 62'' by 16''.

   There is something about finishing up a project that satisfies the quilter in me.  Seeing the completed project makes me smile.  It's a feel good thing. And no UFO to worry about.

    Do you have UFOs to finish?  Do you dislike those blocks/parts now?    It could be time for a UFO Assault!  Here's my find of the week.......
Read the ideas that Mary at Quilting thru Rose colored trifocals shares.   She has some ultimate recycle type finishes for UFO Assault.

Now attack those UFO, send them into completion, or give them away.  Make room for new ideas and fabric.
 I am....happy stitching.  

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Pillow cases

   A new set of sheets, and  a pair of pillow cases arrived here recently.  Only problem the pillow cases are for standard pillows and we have queen pillows.   The cases need about 4 '' more to cover the pillow.  Since I have a shelf full of unused standard cases, I took a cue from the Pillowcase Challenge and re-made a few.

   For this set, I removed the band.  I cut a 4'' strip of favorite fabric.  Sewed the short ends together to form a continuous length.    Stitched it first to the body of the cases and then reattached the band.  I added top stitching, and was done.

Usable cases that I did not have to pay huge $$$ for!

Happy stitching.

Monday, October 10, 2016

Blocks to make

   I spotted a sew along for Fall at From my Carolina Home blog.  Each Friday Carole will post a project....do one or all.  She gives a good tutorial on making the leaf block, too.      Here are my first two, done very scrappy with what I found  already cut in the scrap boxes.   I need to dig some more and cut more background pieces.  Good practice for me.

    I added two more blocks to the Let's Book  It project.   On the wall they look good....but here they look too light (bottom right).    
  Studying this block, I can see that color/value placement really affects things down the road in assembly.  I like the light value strips mixed in, but now see that  I can do better in placing them toward the center of block.  I will try again.

Note:  Take photos of your project.  Then view them on the computer screen.  It is easy to spot potential problems that way.
I am willing to show the "good, bad, and the ugly" as a learning tool......but know it is not required.

Quilting is more fun than HouseworkCynthia is hosting a linky party for scrap projects at Quilting is more fun than Housework .  Check it out for inspiration.

 Happy stitching.   
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