Tuesday, March 29, 2011

My Best Sous Chef and Iron Maven is gone :(

That would be my Mom I'm talking about.  I took her to the airport today.  While she was here my kitchen never had dirty dish in sight and dinner was ready in half the time.   She's a whiz at getting things done.  Pity I didn't inherit that trait from her.  We went for a walk every day and enjoyed a glass of wine before dinner each night.  We played many a game of cards and she finished every crossword puzzle she could find.  She does not however, have the quilting bug, yet.  But, I'm trying. 

Ya know that bag of  HST I have from the exchange?  I showed her "pressing" vs "ironing" and she took off and got most of my 1000 pieces pressed open.  (I joked that I couldn't take her to the airport until they were ALL done.  Hee hee.)  She showed me her favorites as she went along.  Then, she "graduated" to pressing block units while I sewed the Layer Cake block sample.  Wow, that was really fast.  I've never had anyone press while I sewed and let me tell you there can't be anything finer than to have those pressed pieces come flying back at you as fast as you can sew them together.   Did I mention the laundry is all done, too?  And, the ironing? 

I miss her already.

Sunday, March 27, 2011


My Mom has been in town visiting this week from New York.  So, I haven't been doing much of the usual.  We did see the exhibit at the Indiana State Museum entitled Frugal & Fancy Quilts.  It was worth the stop for sure but, I am a local.  The museum as a whole provided a nice day's outing.  No pictures, though, as I didn't think they were allowed.  And, I did get a quilt loaded and started.  I'll have a report at the end of the week and I should also have the next layer cake block up as well.  Hope to see you then!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

More organized

I'm always reorganizing my home and my sewing space. This weekend I saw an article in the paper that gave me an idea to give me more storage space for the projects I'm actively working on; usually that's 3 or 4 or more. Typically, each project is piled here or there and has to be moved constantly (or stepped over) to go from project to the other which is hardly ideal. It's been bothering me for awhile. I was pretty sure I needed shelves on the wall but, it will be awhile before hubby has time to get to that project. So, here is what I came up with.  It's not pretty but I think it's going to work really well:

I took a small set of freestanding shelves for shoes from the coat closet, cleaned them up and set them at the back of my cutting station. Then I loaded it up with all my current projects. On the top shelf is everything I'm using for the Layer Cake BOM plus a couple other things. In the middle is the Easter Basket from ½” cording and a little quilt yet to be named. On the bottom are the fabrics for my Ohio Stars project and a bin for Clothesline projects.  I also have space to the right for 2 magazine holders for all my class ideas and to the left room for two more bins of stuff. Do you see the Omigosh pattern sticking up out of the blue bin? Now I can easily cut strips as I clean up from projects and throw them in the bin. With my cutting station clear I should be able to cut borders etc so much more efficiently! And, I didn’t have to buy a thing. I found all the tubs and bins I needed in the storage room. So, if your space isn’t working for you look around and see what you can find.  And save your money for FABRIC or BOOKS! 

Saturday, March 19, 2011


I really did want to make this quilt.  But, it's not the right one for the person I need to make one for.  I just couldn't visualize it, the color placement, and all.  I am making Ohio Stars but in a different size block and setting.  If anyone doing Eventide would like to see what I'm working on I will update on Tuesday with pictures of my progress.  This quilt needs to be completed by May 1 so I should have something to show each week until then.  Sorry if I've disappointed.  There's always much to choose from and many decisions to make for any quilt.  The Eventide quilts will be beautiful.  I'm sure I will be sorry not to have made it this time around but hopefully some day I will.  Thelma's doing a great job hosting too!  I'm having a really good time seeing what everyone is doing.  If you want to see it head over to http://cupcakesndaisies.blogspot.com/.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Three Little Tidbits

I feel like such a weasel to say I've been too busy (for me, that is, not for some people who remind me of the energizer bunny, but, that's not me) the past couple of weeks to have the time or energy to think about posting. But, I do have a couple of things you all might like to know about.

One, CV gave me this link to Sharon Schamber's instructions for a Quilt Show quality binding and it is wonderful! I've used this on two bindings recently and it's a winner. Don't worry about whether your quilt is going to a show or not, it's a good method for any quilt for which you want a machine-finished binding; I haven't tried it yet for a hand-finished binding. Once the binding was sewn on front side of the quilt, it only took an hour to prepare and sew down the other side and it came out well even on the first try. I'm thinking that's pretty good; and I can surely get better at it. http://quiltinggallery.com/2008/05/15/binding-with-elmers-school-glue/.

Two, I did complete one small task. I told you about the triangle exchange I hosted so the next step was to take the paper off the units. Ta Da! That’s done! Now to press open 900+ pieces but, that should be way more fun since I’ll be looking at all the different fabrics as I press.  (picture added 3/20/11).

Thirdly, I'm making an Easter Basket out of 1/2" cotton cording wrapped with fabric strips that I think will be sooo cute.  Hopefully that will be ready to post over the weekend.  I'm not even close to being a Grandma but, a friend asked me to teach her how to make corded baskets for her grandson so I thought I'd make one to share with you all.  If I get it finished soon you'll have plenty of time, I hope, in case you have a little one that needs an Easter basket this year.  (It's not ready yet...maybe next weekend??)

Friday, March 4, 2011

Layer Cake Sampler-Block 3- is here!

Layer Cake Sampler Block 3

Here’s what we’re making this month:

This block is called “Louisiana”. It is divided into four sections with each section containing a rectangle and a flying geese unit. I choose to keep all the background the same color but you could use a different fabric for the small triangles on the flying geese unit. If you use a busy background the seams won’t show as much. You could also choose to make each flying geese different. Make sure the flying geese unit comes out to the same size as your rectangle or it won’t go together properly. Ready? First I’ll give the cutting numbers and then I’ll go through the piecing with some more pictures. Here are the cutting numbers for finished 8”, then 4”, then 2” blocks:

For an 8” finished block cut:

From the Dark fabric (geese) cut: (4) 2 ½” x 4 ½” rectangles- make them all the same or choose two or four different fabrics

From the Light (background) fabric cut: (4) 2 ½” x 4 ½” rectangles and cut (8) 2 ½” squares. The squares can be a different fabric from the rectangles.

For a 4” finished block cut:

From the Dark fabric (geese) cut: (4) 1 ½” x 2 ½” rectangles- make them all the same or choose two or four different fabrics

From the Light (background) fabric cut: (4) 1 ½” x 2 ½” rectangles and cut (8) 1 ½” squares. The squares can be a different fabric from the rectangles.

For a 2” finished block cut:

From the Dark fabric (geese) cut: (4) 1” x 1 ½” rectangles- make them all the same or choose two or four different fabrics

From the Light (background) fabric cut: (4) 1” x 1 ½” rectangles and cut (8) 1” squares. The squares can be a different fabric from the rectangles.

Now let’s see how to put these together:

Here are the cut pieces.

The pieces at the bottom are left over from the geese fabric. You’ll use up all of the background square if you choose to use one background. Remember the pinked edge “counts” when measuring your cuts.

Make the flying geese units:

For each dark rectangle lay a light square RST (right sides together) and draw line on the diagonal of the light fabric.

Sew on the drawn line making sure to exit at each corner. Press the flap back so there are three layers in the corner. If the corners all match up then you’ve sewn correctly and you can trim off the back two layers. Save them and use them as leaders and enders by sewing on the diagonal! I’ll show what you can do with them later.

Repeat the process for the second square. Be sure to draw the diagonal line in the correct direction. The point of the dark geese fabric does not go all the way to the edge of the unit. There should be a ¼” seam allowance between the point and the edge.

Sew a Light rectangle onto the pointy side of the flying geese unit. I sew the seam with the background fabric on the bottom and so I can look at the point of the geese unit and stitch right through the intersection of the seams. These four sections should each measure 4 ½” square (or 2 ½”, or 1 ½” depending on the size block you are making). And, the point should be visible and the dark fabric goes right out to the corners. Sew the top two together and then the bottom two together. Press the top seam to the left and the bottom seam to the right so that they nest together. Use a pin to secure it. Sew. You’re done with this month’s block !!

Now, about those extra triangles you cut off…you should have 16 of them and just look at what you could do if you saved them each time you made a batch of flying geese!  Now how could you throw those away!  So, try one of these arrangements with yours.

Happy Sewing!