Well, I had a post ready for Monday and I suppose that I forgot to schedule it. It's out of date now so I'll just jump in to where I am at the moment.
Working on the Paula Nadlestern quilts each year are a challenge for me. It's a challenge that I like because it really pushes me. It's really difficult for me to 1) work with a limited group of fabrics and 2) try to estimate which ones I will use and how much I need by just seeing an image of the fabric. Every year I plan my quilts, order my fabric, receive the fabric and realize that my plans won't work.
This year I made it a little more difficult on myself by deciding to make larger quilts that I can use for veterans quilts. In the past we were limited to 36" square quilts because they were sent in and displayed in Houston. Now they are being advertised in a lookbook so we can make whatever we want. I don't have a need or use for 36" square quilts so I'm happy to be able to make lap size quilts.
Here's where I am on the first one. Paula likes for us to keep the pattern simple so that we can include block and quilt layout diagrams in the advertising material. That worked out really good for this quilt because I didn't order enough fo the star point fabric to make something like an Ohio Star block.
I've gotten the blocks done and will work on the on-point setting and triangle border blocks tomorrow between some Thanksgiving preparations.
For the second quilt, I've worked through a couple of failed design ideas but something fun came to me yesterday and I'm excited to get to it this weekend.
I'm also trying to spend a little time each day (only about a half hour) to do some of the stitching on my Christmas postcards. If I can get the stitching done by December 1 I will only have the backs, edges and extra bling to get done and that will only take a day.
This design too several iterations and samples but now I have 30 of them through the stitching phase.
The background fabric is a batik that I purchased in Maine this summer. I knew that I wanted to use it for postcards and I knew that I would fussy cut it so that a star motif would be a focal point.
I have a finished crochet project to share Thursday or Friday and hopefully the first finished quilt top to share by Friday.
Today's inspiration comes from Heidi Kapszukiewicz. Here's Heidi's description of her challenge quilt:
This is a guild challenge where we used our birthstone color for a quilted piece. I chose Vicki's blue fabric to be the basis for my aquamarine birthstone. I saw many flower and leaf images in the fabrics and I wanted to try thread stitching. So I used various variegated threads to bring out the shapes. I also wanted to have a natural border of leaves at the bottom. These were added later. This is all Vicki's fabric except the tummy of my tree swallow who decided to visit us with its mate. I added star shaped beads to complete the sky. I won "members' choice" at my guild and this was displayed at our quilt show with other entries.
For sharing, Heidi received a 20% coupon for the shop that's good for 3 months! If you have made anything with my hand dyed fabric I hope you will consider sharing it in the Customer Gallery. The only rule is that projects have to be complete. It doesn't have to be made totally from hand dyed fabric, just include a recognizable amount.
Laura left yesterday morning but we spent our last evening watching some pretty bad TV. In between laughs I started my next big blanket and after last night's football game, I'm through the first ball.
Yesterday afternoon was my monthly knit/crochet group. I worked on this shawl and I'm on the 3rd ball of Lion Brand Ice Cream Cotton Blend. I do not love how the color plays out. But it's great to work with and it's going to be a very comfortable and warm shawl. I think it's about long enough and then there's trim around the edges to do.
But I've been crocheting too much and I will take the next 2 days off to rest my hands. Instead I'll be sewing.
First thing is to clear off the cutting table by figuring out how I'm going to use these fabrics for my third postcard design. I found that pretty batik at the only quilt shop in Greenville, ME this summer. I love the added gold sparkle snowflakes printed over it. This today's task along with making cookies to take to my brother's house tomorrow for a Thanksgiving meal with family.
Laura left us today. We had a great visit and already miss her but she wants to get home to her family, especially the 3 grandkids. Today I will get back in the sewing room working on the Christmas postcards and my annual sample quilts for Paula Nadelstern. I've been given permission to share my progress with black and white photos. Here are the fabrics all washed and ready to cut. I'm excited to work with them.
Updates to come!
On Monday Laura, Mom and I took a day trip to Farmville, VA to visit a friend and to hike a bit of the High Bridge Trail. High Bridge Trail is a historic (abandoned) railroad trail that has a lot of history from the Civil War. At the far end of this bridge is the site for Camp Paradise. You can read about Camp Paradise at the link. It's kind of humorous to find out how it got it's name.
Because Laura mostly has knitting projects (not sewing), I've been mostly crocheting with her the last 3 weeks. As a result, the David blanket is done!
I'm showing this photo first because the color is most accurate here. It's the same pattern that I've been making for the brother blankets.
I had an extra skein of yarn in this colorway so this blanket, for my youngest brother, is a little larger than the other 2. He's a little larger than the other 2 brothers so that worked out just fine. This one finished 54 x 68, compared to 46 x 64. They are so stretchy that they will grow to whatever size needed.
I know that I say this all the time but I absolutely love this yarn. I love working with it and I love the color blends. It's too bad that it's discontinued but there are lots of other yarns out there, like Premier Puzzle, that have a similar effect.
I have enough of this yarn to make 4 more blankets but only have a recipient identified for the next one. I'm going to make this one for my cousin's husband. He went to University of Richmond and follows their sports avidly. Their colors are red and blue. I'll get this one started this weekend.
Sadly, Laura has to go home tomorrow so we only have today left to visit. She's going to spend some time with a friend while I am dyeing but we will have the evening together and I'm sure Chris will fix us a tasty meal.
Sadly, Laura has to go home this week but we are squeezing in as much fun as we can before she leaves.
We spent Saturday in Charlottesville with Mom driving all over the place for the annual Artisan Studio Tour. I love this event because the artist's work is amazing. There's lots of beautiful woodwork and pottery with sculpture, mosaic, jewelry, quilts, glass and every other possible craft. It was very inspiring.
I have so much stuff in my house already that I wasn't inspired to buy anything big but I did get my annual blown glass ornament for my tree. The white on this one glows in the dark. I tested it Saturday night and it has a very nice glow to it!
Yesterday was football day and I was in the mood to start a new project. This is a really easy shawl pattern that fits the From The Heart brief perfectly. They like capelet style because it stay on the shoulders easier and that's good for people in wheelchairs and with walkers. I had just started the second skein of yarn when I took this photo. I think it will take 3 and that's perfect for the amount of yarn that I have. I like the pattern a lot and I can't find it online anywhere to leave you a link. Maybe I'll find it by the time I finish the project.
Today we are off to Farmville to visit a friend of Mom's and walk a section of the High Bridge Trail.
I intended to post yesterday but just didn't have much worth posting.
I worked the election at my local precinct Tuesday. It's an incredibly long day (5:00 am - 8:00 pm) but we had a great team and really good turnout. I was surprised by the turnout because we only had one item on the ballot. I basically rested all day Wednesday except for dyeing some fabric for a custom order. There will be no newsletter next week because I didn't have the energy to dye any new fabric.
Laura is here for 6 more days and we are having a great time. Today we went into Ashland so she could get some coffee and a treat from one of her favorite shops. Tomorrow we are going to Charlottesville for an Artisan Studio Tour. In the evenings we mostly sit and knit (her) and crochet (me) and watch TV. She love Hallmark channel and she allows me to make snide commentary throughout for my part of the entertainment.
Meanwhile, Chris was quarantined in the guest house since he came home from hunting Sunday. Everyone on the trip got some sort of cold/flu/not covid. It's not nearly as bad as what we had in August but I still didn't want to risk sending Laura home sick. The guest house is a great sick ward. I had him set up with a TV, his computer and snacks when he got home from Nebraska (he got sick there so I knew to prepare). I think he actually enjoyed it a little too much over there but we eventually needed him to cook dinner for us and he's back "home"now.
I haven't done much sewing because I want to spend time with Laura but I did get the appliques fused to this set of cards. Next I need to add some metallic stitching. I need to get back on the cards quickly because my Paula Nadelstern sample fabric has arrived and I need to have the sample quilt (or 2 quilts) done by December 1. I've got a plan, I just need to execute.
Hopefully I'll be back Monday with some progress on something. I might start another crochet project but I really need to work on these cards.
I've got 4 new fabrics for you this week. These are water and land inspired Reflections fabrics. Reflections are streaky fabrics that are great for water, sky and land elements. I also think they work great for borders and binding.
Fabric of the Week
Another great fabric for landscape elements is the Clear Day Gradient. It's on sale through Sunday for 20% off.
To be honest, most of what I did this weekend involved chores (laundry, cleaning out a freezer, cleaning the stove) and a lot of leaf blowing. I'm not even half done with the leaves but I made a good dent.
But it wasn't all chores. I made some progress on my Christmas postcards. I got the tree cards to the point where I'm ready to serge the edges and then I'll just need to add paint dots for ornaments.
I got the backings fused for the night sky cards fused to the bases.
Now I'm working on cutting out moons and stars from some metallic/pearlized painted fabrics. After these are fused on I'll do some stitching with metallic thread.
Tomorrow I will be working at my voting precinct so I have to be there at 5am and will not get home until around 9pm. It's going to be a long day and there won't be a post on Wednesday.
This week's inspiration is an art quilt from Karen Edwards. She used a brown Stash Pack for all of the elements.
For sharing, Karen received a 20% coupon for the shop that's good for 3 months! If you have made anything with my hand dyed fabric I hope you will consider sharing it in the Customer Gallery. The only rule is that projects have to be complete. It doesn't have to be made totally from hand dyed fabric, just include a recognizable amount.
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I'm Vicki Welsh and I've been making things as long as I can remember. I used to be a garment maker but transitioned to quilts about 20 years ago. Currently I'm into fabric dyeing, quilting, Zentangle, fabric postcards, fused glass and mosaic. I document my adventures here.