The time has come.
I can't procrastinate on my oldest UFO anymore. Yesterday I got it loaded and basted. I have a general idea of how I want to quilt it so I'll likely start with what I know for sure that I want to do and figure the rest out as I go along. But, for sure, there will be stitches in this quilt by Monday. It is huge at 95" square but I was really happy that it was square and flat and basting it was easy.
In the black areas I want to do some feathers and I'm thinking about one of these threads. I want the black to stay predominately black but I would like for the feathers to show a little. I'm sort of favoring the dark green on the left. What's do you think?
In the last couple of days I also got my placemats quilted. As I was doing these on the Juki I noticed that the tension is acting up in just the way it acted up the one time it had to be serviced. So I'm taking the machine to my brother this afternoon so he can clean it up and fix whatever is worn out.
Today is also the day that I finally get to deliver the fancy doll dress to Ella. Her birthday was in July but I haven't been able to see her since June. I'm anxious to see if this thing fits well.
I'll be OK without my Juki and I can bind all of these projects on my Brother machine while I wait for the Juki to be repaired. These projects should keep me out of trouble for the weekend.
Yesterday didn't go quite as planned but everything worked out in the end. I spent more time than I planned dealing with what I thought was a plumbing issue but is actually an electrical issue. The water pump on my dye sink has been failing. I thought it was the pump but now we know that it's something in the electric box. Yesterday they replaced the one breaker switch but it failed again sometime after they left. I plugged the pump into another outlet that feeds from another breaker switch and it ran great. So it's definitely inside the box. I'm guessing that something was reconnected quite right after the generator was installed. We have a supervisor coming out Monday to look at it. Meanwhile now I know that I can use the sink and run the pump from another outlet.
But the coolest part of all of that was that the electrician that came out yesterday was a woman! Yay!
While I was still worried about the pump I decided to bring some fabrics that I wanted to soak up to the bathroom. These are the rest of my collection of my first-ever hand dyed fabrics. They are serious bleeders but I'm solving that problem this week and can then I'll be able to start using them with all of my other hand dyed fabrics.
I eventually got to working on my other goal of getting the big green quilt loaded on the longarm. It's a complex process because I want the front centered in this ice dyed back. Just between us, I like the back a lot better than the front!
I have a tutorial here for how to center a quilt on the longarm but here are the basic steps. I load the backing and then roll it until the center is in the middle of my working area. Usually the batting has a pretty perfect fold in the middle so I line up the batting fold along the center line of the backing.
Then comes the hard part of lining up the quilt top with the center batting fold. There's a lot of bulk laying around and you have to ignore it and only worry about that center. I get that one line centered and then baste.
Once the center is basted I can spread out the batting and quilt for the lower half of the quilt and baste the rest of the work space. Then I loosely roll the bottom batting and top onto the roller so that I can focus on basting the top half of the quilt.
Once the top is done I go back to the middle, unroll the batting and backing for the bottom half of the quilt and finish the basting. After a little bit of dyeing today I will be ready to start quilting! I think I'm going to do free motion swirls all over it. That will go fast and will add some softness to the straight piecing.
This is a quick quilt that I quilted for Mom this week. When she lived in Farmville her neighbor was also a quilter. Rita and John were very nice, very funny and were really kind to Mom. Shortly after Mom moved away Rita died and, of course, left behind a packed sewing room and tons of UFO projects. Mom has taken on a couple of them to finish for the family. This quilt is one of them.
Rita was really organized and had her projects packed away with the fabric and pattern together so Mom knew that she planned this pattern for this fabric.
Funny story, when she brought the top over we put it up on the design wall and we both commented that it's not one of our favorite quilts. We aren't particularly fond of the fabrics or pattern. But just as we were expressing our opinions Chris walked through, glanced at the quilt and said that he really like it. So there you go, different strokes for different folks.
I quilted it with an Urban Elementz pantograph called Carnival and used pink So Fine Thread in the needle and bobbin. It was nice to do something a little feminine for a change.
Next on the longarm is the big green quilt.
The feather quilting class that I'm taking with Bethanne Nemesch ends today. We will have access to watch the videos again throughout May but today is the last class. I have really enjoyed this format so much more than an in-person class. I like being able to watch the lessons and practice on my own schedule and to be able to do it on my machine. I started practicing on just plain fabric loaded on the machine but I've always hated practicing that way. I have a strong need to make everything I do "useful". So I switched to practicing on the veterans quilts. Three of them have now been done very fancy with feathers!
Here's the latest one. The block format of this quilt made it a natural for square feathered wreaths.
Bethanne says that she uses this ribbon feather motif on many of her Quilts of Valor and, now that I've used it, I'd say it's perfect! I believe that I've now quilted about 20 feathered wreaths WITH CENTERS! I'm pretty darned pleased with my wreath centers now.
Here's the back. I alternated the direction of the feathers and I think that created a cool pattern where the edges of the wreaths meet.
I was in a little more of a hurry to get the second one done so it got a continuous curves treatment. I got them quilted, trimmed and photographed before we left for dinner with friends.
Here's how the CC quilting looks on the back. The secondary patterns created with CC quilt are always cool to see.
I also won an bobbin chicken. It was a good day all around!
Well, I didn't make it to sewing with my quilt club. I started having some big allergic reaction Thursday and decided not to go because I didn't want to freak out anyone with my sneezes and sniffles. How do I know for sure it was allergies? Hives and abnormally low temperature (97.0). That's allergy. It was mostly cleared up by last night and it didn't keep me from being productive although there were a couple of Benedryl naps.
The biggest accomplishment of the weekend was getting Mom's quilt quilted. The quilt was started by a friend who passed away a couple of years ago. It was supposed to be a Yellow Brick Road. After getting the whole quilt together she didn't like it. She took it apart and added the 3 sold borders and the coins border on the edge. It finished at 102" square and this is how it looks on a queen bed.
The color in this photo isn't quite right. I love the backing fabric hat she picked but I had to add another few inches on one edge because the backing fabric was exactly the width of the quilt. I'm glad I don't have to bind it!
I also got back to the floor cloths after more than a month away. I can only do this about an hour at a time because I'm so sensitive to the Sharpie fumes. I wear a respirator and run a fan but that only helps so much. It's just as well because crawling around on the floor isn't the most comfortable thing to do at 60. During this session I added the 2 small motifs on the left and added 2 squiggly motifs on the right. I have some elements that can be snapped together for different shapes and that's how these were done. In some future posts I'll try to remember to take some photos of the set up for some of the special shapes.
Because there were good football games to watch this weekend I decided to finally tackle this mess. It's my dye binder with all of my recipes and it's become a huge mess.
During the games I alternated between working on the book and doing some crochet. Once I get the book cleaned up it will save me a ton of time on Wednesdays. This chore should have been done 2 years ago.
The crochet blanket is over half done. My goals for this week are to work on Summer Sunset and the floor cloths.
Actually it was the same word three times....loudly. Then I laughed.
After inspecting the quilt for anything that needed to be fixed, I removed the zippers and within 30 seconds found this!
Seriously, how did I quilt 4 blocks around this diamond (because the diamonds were what I quilted first) and not see that I had an incomplete block?
Back to the quilting frame. I was able to roll the quilt on the back bar and use the PVC clamps on the front to hold it steady enough to get that section quilted. I knew there was a reason I hadn't loaded another quilt yet!
Now it's trimmed and the binding is ready. I'll need to clear off the Summer Sunset blocks from my sewing table so I can stitch this 5 miles of binding. But that will wait until we get back from hiking.
The next crochet project is this gingham blanket pattern from Daisy Farm Crafts. I did this first swatch using the hook sizes recommended in the pattern but I don't think it's going to work. This swatch feels like it would make a better rug than blanket. So bought a "L" hook yesterday to try another swatch and see if I like it better. I've got the new swatch started but I can't quite tell yet.
Today I'll get next week's giveaway posts scheduled and maybe get another quilt loaded or maybe make some more progress on the Spirograph. Tomorrow will be food prep for the trip and we leave Sunday morning. By Monday night I might be regretting the trip all together after a 10 mile hike! Enjoy the giveaway posts while I'm away and I'll see you in 10 days with all the winners!
Well, here it is off the frame and spread over a queen size bed.
It's really, really big! I'm please with the way it looks on the bed. Kim says that if it's too big for her bed she will buy a new bed. She would actually do that.
At this point the zippers are still attached in case I need to do any repairs.
Inspecting the stitching on the back was not easy! I liked this backing when I bought it but I didn't like it much yesterday.
So far the only thing I've discovered is this little pleat which will stay exactly where it is. I don't think I'd ever be able to find it again! Next I'll trim it and start the binding. I'll hand stitch the binding so that might take MONTHS.
Next up for quilting is something simple. This is a quilt that Mom made to give someone who works in her apartment building. It's going to get an easy pantograph. After that I have over 14 veterans quilt tops needing quilting!
Don't forget to check in every day next week for daily giveaways!
Yes, I am slow as molasses at quilting but I do eventually get to the finish line!
I'm not quite done yet but I'm closer. All the pink blocks are quilted!
That includes the border sections as well.
I know these photos are so incredibly boring and, yes, I am having some regret over my thread choices but I remind myself that this is a bed quilt, not a show quilt. It's going to be just fine and I know that Kim will love it. I know that because Anne told me that Kim is excited about getting the quilt. I'd love to get this wrapped up by the end of October. Now that I've thrown that out as a deadline maybe I'll be just a little more motivated.
Today is dyeing day and I'm really excited that shibori is finally on the schedule again!
I finally got a little focused and got some things done this weekend. The weather has also finally started to turn cool so we were about to get out Saturday for a brisk 5 mile walk. Chris is a foot taller than me so all walks with him are brisk for me! But after the walk and breakfast I was ready to get down to some work.
I finished the 3rd set of blocks for my Summer Sunset quilt so 3 of 8 star points are done. This is not a fast project but it's great to work on while listening to a good book.
I got 2 more rows of the pink blocks quilted on Kim's Garden. I have one more row of flower blocks and the pink border blocks and then I can move on to the yellow blocks. I'm very happy with how this is coming along. But it's also a slow project. So for the next few weeks you are likely to see nothing but these two projects. It's probably going to get a bit boring around here.
The 4 bolts of wide backing fabric that I ordered for veterans quilts came in so yesterday I cut one bolt and dyed 7 quilt backs. That will make 14 quilts. I already have tops for 4 of them! I'll get these washed today and started soaking. They need to be done by the time that I start dyeing again Wednesday.
I don't have any big plans this week so I hope to keep making progress on these 2 projects.
I got the flower quilt loaded back on the longarm this weekend and started quilting the flower blocks. Yay! I'm going to do 2 different fills and this is what I'm going to use in the pink blocks. This quilt also has a new home now! My friend Kim loves it. I got to hang out with her Saturday for a while and this is now her quilt. I think it's going to be named for one of her grandmothers but I don't remember the name. But I'll get that straight before it's time to put a label on it. My goal is to get the pink blocks quilted before we leave and then I can finish it in September.
I've also officially started a new quilt! I've been wanting to make a quilt based on the Summer Sunset gradient for a very long time. I bought this pattern 2 years ago so it's finally time to start it. I'm going to take this on vacation too but I'm going to try to get at least 1 sample block made this week and cut some of the strips for the foundation piecing. I'm going to use the gradient as a border so that the quilt will be big enough for our bed. The pattern calls for a LOT of fabric. There's a total of 26 yards there so when this quilt is done there will be a few "leftover" projects to follow. The pattern is Mardi Gras by Vector Quilts. The printed foundation are done on fabric that can be left in the quilt so no papers to tear!
My focus this week is getting ready for the trip. I want to get the car crochet project started so that I'm not fiddling with the foundation chain in a moving car. I also want to get this quilt started. Otherwise, I'll be packing.
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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.