Monday, February 8, 2016

Birds in the Air


  I had to search back to see when I began this.....it was in July  of last year.  I started making the triangles and got side tracked.  I returned to making triangles and got side tracked again.  I began joining the units and got off onto another project.  This photo is from November.....it finally made it to the flimsy stage.     

  I was unsure how it should be quilted, so it hung on a hanger for a couple of months.   I debated on straight lines to accentuate the diagonal lines.  I thought about some easy meandering since the fabric are mixed and strong in places.       Then I thought it needed a border.....or not.    I finally asked myself a couple of questions.....was I keeping or giving it away?  ......did I want a soft or hard effect?   I decided to keep it for a small lap quilt.  I always want a small throw on my lap when I sit and read or watch TV.   And a soft effect was an easy choice.   Quilting motif is a pattern called swirly tails  from Wendy Shepard's blog.   It softly blends without being too dense.
      A pale purple binding finished it off.    I tried a scrappy mixed of colors/ all dark colors  but found it distracting on this one.   Since the color palette is blue, green, and purple  I thought a softer tone worked the best.


  And this Let's book It project is done!   
    I found a small project to play with for this month's Book It project.  It's a nice mind distracting / doesn't have to be perfect project.  When I have things tumbling around in my brain---life in general---I find that a simple project is best.  So I will be playing with it for a day or two.   Enjoy it all....happy stitching.  

Friday, February 5, 2016

Friday Finds....borders?

  Borders?  I have a love/hate relationship with borders on my quilts.  And lately, I have been very lax---read that as lazy---about using borders.   First, why do we add borders......

  • A plain border---solid or striped---can make your quilt larger in size.  
  • Turn a square top into a rectangular size by adding border to the top and bottom only.  
  •  A great place for leftover parts or small blocks, especially in a scrap quilt. 
  •  Enhances the design and makes a finishing statement.  
Sixteen-Blue-Ribbon-Quilts-43.jpg 1,275×1,608 pixels:   

I think I shared this before.....a good collection of simple ideas for a border.  I don't have a source for it, but it contains sound advice.  

   Now a few good finds  for some inspiration.





Elizabeth's Quilting Projects
 

  From Elizabeth's Quilt Project blog.....check out what she did in this border.  Crumbs!  All the bits and pieces from this jar quilt came together to make a border.  I like the unexpected movement it creates.  She explains  her technique here.  












Exuberant Color: Last January finish..........:
Exuberant Color
  
 From Exuberant Color blog.  Wanda recently finished this scrap quilt of leftovers.
Not only is the design amazing and simple, but the border just turns this quilt into something outstanding in my eyes.  The border of triangles repeats the the star points.  Be sure to click over and read how she developed this one. 









"Gathering Baskets" (from Primitive Pieces By Lynda):
From Primitive Pathways



This is a pattern from Primitive Pathways.   A different layout--offset--using the triangles and that extra border on the right with applique is quite special.  











Block Leaf Quilt Border Pattern for Corners:
From How stuff works....... a border design using those orange peels.  How neat is this!  I love how it turns the corner so nicely too.   This would be great on a busy scrap quilt.  







As always, please visit the links for the original source.   I did not make these quilts, so don't pin from me....thanks.  
 More border ideas and inspiration can be found on my Border board on Pinterest.  
Enjoy.....and happy stitching. 

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Waiting on my muse

  I am in a lull.  Where did that muse of mine disappear to?    I usually hear her whispering my ear, giving me an idea, or direction to follow.  Yet, things are quiet and silent right now. So, I have not picked a new  project...large or small.  Instead I have added to my almost  daily routine.


The addictive circles continue.  Seriously, I do find them addictive like eating M and Ms, or potato chips.   I have a very eclectic mix of fabrics....some for color, some for print, some for memories.  Setting them together will be a challenge.










   Since I do a circle a day, why not add a block a day to the routine.     I only had a 3 1/2'' strip of this fabric left.  The easiest block I could come up with was a bow tie.   Now the bow tie is added to the routine.    There are a lot of design options for this block......I will just see where it takes me.






  Mainly I have been quilting those projects in waiting.  Very large,  open meandering for this Habitat quilt for our guild.  Ruth made the top, and I will just finish it up.  This one now needs binding fabric.







  Binding was added to the Birds in the Air.  Just a label to add  and then I will share its finish.


 We had oven an inch of rain yesterday.....I see robins every where in the front yard.  All those sweet worms must make a good breakfast for them.  That means spring is not far behind.   Happy stitching.  

Monday, February 1, 2016

January finishes

  January brought some finishes.  The orange peel project named Season's Glow  was added to my list of favorites.  A strippy string project came together with different widths.  Word of the year...Enjoy!    The pineapple, Welcome,  was my Let's Book It project and is perfect in the guest room.  And those addictive  circles filled one side of the design wall.    I will be digging in the green scraps this week to see what I can find.




  I also started a project  last month that I
shared.....and am just not happy with it.   I took the time to make another 2 blocks and realized it was not coming together.   Those strip stacks are not what I envisioned.
   As I was studying the blocks, my word for the year was staring me in the face.  That helped make my decision.....either toss or do something else with it.  I think I will turn  the blocks into a table runner and   move on.

So I need a new project to pursue, and a new Let's Book It project.  I have one of my tops to quilt and 2 for Habitat that are waiting for quilting too.    That will take care of the month.  I  am off to look for some inspiration.....happy stitching.  

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Circles for January

  Before I get to the circles.....can you tell me why a company would make a double wall oven with self cleaning only on the top one?   That makes no sense at all.  Are you going to only bake/cook in one of them?  Both ovens need to be cleaned.   I mainly use the lower oven for reheating or baked goods....to avoid spills and splatters there.    I am sure the companies have a conspiracy of a sort to annoy me about this!
  Thursday I spent most of the day with my head in the lower oven, trying to make it presentable.  I am allergic to most cleaners, so I did the baking soda scrub.  Then I set the top one to self clean while I cleaned out the cabinet under the sink. and did laundry, and a few other chores that I had neglected for too long.    A quick trip to Walmart for new silicon oven liners and I am ready to mess them up again.    Still annoyed, but I have clean ovens.


 Are you making circles?

   This month I missed a couple of days.....as life got in the way....... doctor's visits,  oven cleaning, and a call at 8 am to say your  credit card has been hacked.  You know those kind of challenges that over take you.

   Most days, the circle is the first thing I do in the sewing room.     Finding fabric that holds a memory,  or just jumps up and says "use me",  is a nice start to say the least.  Be sure to note the black and cream stripe on the end of the second row.  This one is the found fabric like Sir Old Man's shirt.....Bonnie Hunter did not get it after all!  I found carpenter tool fabric,   a red hat...that I had to put on purple, and blue sky fabric.

   I am waiting before I begin any joining of rows or sections.    Just following my gut instinct that I need to wait for more variety / additional inspiration for the layout.   I am not sure how big I want this to be....or should I make two throw size?   So for now, I will add these to the box of circles and think about next month.

  It's not too late to begin your circle project.....linking to Quilty 365 at Quilty folk blog.  

Friday, January 29, 2016

January Let's Book It


  A welcome sign is symbolized in a pineapple.....or so the story goes.  I shared this pattern on Friday finds a couple of months ago.  I thought it would be great to have as a wall hanging in the guest room.

  Simple squares of gold and tan for the pineapple, topped with a crown of green Dresden plate segments.  Then it was border time......


At first, I was a bit concerned about the bold pattern of the fabric I selected.  It had the perfect tones of the green and gold along with that rich purple.

   To soften the effect, I added a simple extra border to the top and bottom only.  Just a few scrap logs extended the overall length.  Now it was looking better.












 I quilted in a lot of texture around the pineapple that now adorns the storage cabinet where I keep the extra quilts.  I used a light binding to contrast with the border fabric---again to soften it---and to be a nice contrast against the dark cabinet.  










  Oh....lest we forget.  The ugly fabric is on the back....the color matches.  No peeking to admire that!!  Just enjoy the welcome to our home and enjoy your stay.













Dust Off Those BooksLinking to Let's Book It at Vrooman's Quilts.     

  If you haven't joined or don't know about Let's Book It...the details are at Sharon's blog on the Book It page.  Simply select a project from your collection of saved patterns and create it.....large or small, start it, change it,  or better yet..... complete it.  Then share at the end of each month.  It's Sharon's way to enable/encourage us to enjoy our projects.  At the end of the year, you will be surprised at what you accomplished!   And those small projects make great gifts  :)

Final note......followers have been dropping this week....Google is cleaning house.  If you are a regular blogger, great.  If you drop in occasionally, that is great too.  You might consider following your favorite blogs by email if you do not wish to join google.   Check the sidebar and sign up.  My understanding is that you can join google and get a "dashboard" to read your favorite blogs with out writing one.  That way you can also comment.  technology....such a headache!  I'd rather be stitching.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Finished orange peels

  In September/October of last year, I began working on the orange peels block.  It was to be part of my Year of Florals....using traditional pattern translated into a colorwash effect using floral prints.  My original intent was to mix up the florals, but in the original layout, I realized that was not to be.









 Each layout produced that stronger colorwash effect.
  I finally gave up trying to be different and let the values and fabrics create the design that pleased my eye.












   This became the final setting for the orange peels....which I named Season's Glow.  Begun in the fall and finished in mid-winter, it seems to catch the light of the seasonal sun.




  I kept the quilting simple on this one because for me it is all about the fabrics and values.  Outlining the peels was done free hand---no rulers----so you may see some inconsistency.  That's okay by me.  The outer border was done in loose swirls....enough and not too much.





  The fabrics are a big assortment of florals from the stash closet.  No duplicates in the peels either!  Call me guilty of hoarding florals I love.   The border fabric is a soft mottled gray tonal print that was also used as background in some of the orange peel blocks.  I had enough of it on hand and liked the way it looked.






Season's  Glow:
Overall size is 55'' wide by 65'' long.










    Now to stitch down the hanging sleeve and I can call it done.  I took my time on this one....a plus for enjoyment.  Future enjoyment....the visual treat of the glow it has.

  Happy stitching.
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