My big chore for the weekend is to get the taxes together. For an accountant, I dread this chore a lot more than I should. I stopped doing our taxes years ago when I did the state taxes wrong 3 years in a row (we kept getting a second check) and I couldn't figure out what I was doing wrong. Even in college I would complain to the Dean (a restaurant customer of mine) that tax accounting belonged in a whole separate curriculum. I still believe that. It's not accounting. It's completely illogical.
Anyway, it's my chore and after that I'm going to immerse myself in penguins and yarn de-stashing.
This week I've been making a little progress on the next baby afghan. This granny square stitch is rally easy and fast. I now know why it's so popular. It would be great for working on a plan or in a car.
This is how much yarn is left. I intend to use every inch of it so I'll splice in those bits of pink and green on the side. I really don't think it will take very long to finish this, it's going really quickly.
I've also been trying to figure out how I will quilt the postage stamp quilt. I don't intend to enter this quilt because it will be so huge but I'd like the quilting to be nice. I don't need to be in a hurry though because finding a king size black batting is next to impossible. I've found one place to order it but I'd have to get 2. I found another shop and did place an order but they canceled it a refunded me. I'm now trying to see if a local shop will order it for me.
Meanwhile I ponder the quilting.
I printed off a pale copy of the quilt and slide it into a page protector and can do my drawing on the page protector. This is the idea that I've had in my head all along. Spirograph circles floating behind the postage stamps. It didn't take long for me to realize that this is a really bad idea. There's just too much going on and it would take FOREVER to quilt.
I'd like this quilt on my bed sometime before I die.
So then I started thinking more traditional, focusing on the black spaces.
The first idea was the wreath. I envision it in bright colored thread to stand out on the black. I'm planning to CC the postage stamps and I could carry that in the black to the edge of the wreath. I like that OK but then I thought about using the edge of the black diamond instead and I really like that. I'm thinking I could even do a connecting diamond in the postage stamps too.
This is where I left off with ideas. You are welcome to give my your ideas too! I've got plenty more thinking time before I start this quilt.
It's quilted and trimmed! I'm starting binding today.
We had another great weekend with our friends visiting. Ian and I took a city hike Thursday night that was about 4.7 miles with almost 900 steps! It was quite a workout and had some great views of Richmond. We found the hike through a local hiking meetup group. We had a visit from our friend's dogs Friday, a party Saturday and 4 football games. It was a busy weekend. We always have a lot of fun when Laura and Ian visit.
But I did get in a bit of quilting time while Laura was knitting and I finished quilting Groovy. I'm glad I decided to do a simple pantograph so it wouldn't take a ton of work or, more importantly, thought.
Here are 3 of my favorite blocks and, if you click on one, you can see the pantograph design. We all love this quilt I look forward to using it this summer once. But I have to get the binding and label done first. The binding is my task for today.
Meanwhile, Laura and I have been working in EQ to design a quilt for her newly-redecorated bedroom. This is the design we settled on. The center is from an old book called Shadow Quilts. The fabrics have been dyed and we are just waiting on finishing the processing to get started.
But she has another quilt project too! Mom is coming over tomorrow to teach her Stack-N-Whack. We bought fabric for that this weekend too. One was a turquoise batik and it's been soaking 48 hours so far to get it to stop bleeding. Turquoise always bleeds at least 48 - 72 hours. She might start this one later this week. The SNW will probably be her first priority.
For me, priority is binding.
We are having a great time with our friends here from England. They will be here until the first week in February so I'm not stressing myself to actually get things done. But when Laura is sewing or they are out hanging out with other friends, I get in a little quilting or something. My next focus is on getting Groovy done. I'm loading it on the longarm today and will start quilting it this weekend.
I'm going to use the same pantograph that I used on the first Groovy quilt.
But I'm using a different batting. This quilt will be our summer quilt so the batting is a flannel sheet. It makes for a nice, lightweight quilt. There won't be any real definition in the quilted surface because it will be so flat but it will be perfectly comfortable in July and August.
We're also designing a quilt for Laura to make and once we have the pattern and colors settled I'll share it.
Mom's hand surgery went really well and didn't take nearly as long as we expected. We think that they tell everyone to arrive at the same time and then just call people in on a first come, first served basis. The procedure on her knuckle took all of 5 minutes but she had 30 minutes of prep time including making her totally undress! Bizarre.
While I waited I worked on my EQ lesson book and learned a few new things. I'll share after I finish teh second lesson that I was working on.
Back at home I have the Groovy quilt loaded. I forgot to take a photo of the spiral tie dyed back so you'll have to wait until it's done to see that.
The recipient of this quilt is my friend's husband, Jamie. He loves tie dye and he really, really loves green. The backing is shades of green so I also picked green threads.
This panto might be a tad feminine but I like the swirl effect with the spiral of the back so I'm going with it. The quilt is loaded and ready for quilting. Tomorrow and Saturday are sewing days with my quilt club but I might be able to get some quilting done in the evenings. During the day I'll be working on the Hunter's Star veterans quilt. There's a possibility that I can get the top together in 2 days of sewing.
One I finished all of the marbles on my quilt I was doubly inspired to get it finished so I jumped right in to work out background quilting.
of course my nature is to quilt something really dense but I ultimately want this to be a bed quilt and I had to take that in consideration. The quilting also had to be simple and fast because I really want to get it done. I'm tired of looking at it.
I decided in a mix of pebbles (to continue the circle theme) and wavy lines.
The quilt is a diagonal gradient of light to dark browns. I picked 3 shades of brown Wonderfil Deco-Bob thread for the quilting. It will completely blend into the background so the quilting will just show as texture.
This is the best photo that I was able to get to show off the texture. I"m really happy with it and am excited to get it finished. I got through about half if it this weekend and am about ready to start with the darkest thread. I can't believe that this quilt is going to be wrapped up soon!
Well, except for blocking, binding and a label. There's still all of that left to do.
I should have a lot of time to devote to this quilt this week. I only have a dentist appointment tomorrow and shooting practice Thursday. At some point I need to go shopping for a suitable tile to finish off the dye sink backsplash. I don't think I'll find the exact blue penny glass but I should be able to find something reasonably close.
Yesterday was dyeing day but I saved some time to get the last 5 marbles quilted on this quilt.
I had the idea for this last one for a while but I saved it because I thought it was the most appropriate last design since it uses the most rulers.
Now it's time to start quilting the background and that means it's time to start agonizing about the background designs. I think I'll pick a few filler designs and just start quilting and start mixing them up in the background.
I got one more truckload of mulch spread yesterday (only 3 left to do) and even got some clay shooting practice in. My shooting skills have really struggled the past year but I recently invested in getting my gun fitted (shortened stock) and I switched from using both eyes to just my left and now I am finally seeing some good results. I have a lesson tomorrow that I'm really looking forward to.
I had to switch to one-eyed shooting because we discovered that my eyes were switching dominance in the middle of my shot. I've learned a lot about my vision with shooting practice which was my main goal. We quilters spend all of our time looking up close and I noticed that distance vision kind of fatigues me. That's why I started shooting practice and it's really helping. Like many women, I don't have a dominant eye at a distance and by distance I mean 2 feet! Apparently it also explains why I sometimes get a little vertigo walking down stairs.
Growing up I probably should have spent a little more time outdoors and a little less with my nose stuck in books! Do you find that because your hobbies are close up that your distance vision is more difficult? Or are my eyes just naturally messed up?
But of course after some long distance vision practice I went right back to my happy place and started quilting more large marbles! Here are 5 that I did yesterday and I only have 5 left to do. These large circles are such a challenge. Less than half my rulers cover the diameter of a circle this big.
Doing these is mentally exhausting so 5 is about my limit but I'm going to chain myself to the machine a get the last 5 done today.
More progress on the big marbles this week. The end is in sight! I'm starting to get the hang of the big marbles. I can use 2 or 3 thread colors to make them more interesting. The circles that visually fall behind other circles are the most challenging. I tie off every place where the design ends against the next circle and that takes a bit of time. Trust me that the thread shows up much better in real life!
A few weeks ago I took a break from Lost My Marbles to quilt some veterans quilts and this quilt for Mom.
Mom thought she was going to use up her stash of 2.5" squares.
Seriously, she should know better by now. We know that scraps procreate while we are away. This might have made a dent but I don't think it came close to using up what she had. Still, it's a pretty stunning quilt.
The color in the first photo is way off. This one is a more accurate representation of the color.
The first original quilting plan was a pantograph but I've used pantgraphs a lot and wanted a change. I decided on a mix of ruler work in the narrow sashing and continuous curves in the blocks. But while I was quilting the first block I thought that the outside border needed to be feathers. I wanted feathers somewhere else too so I changed the plan a bit and decided to do alternating blocks in feathered wreaths.
I can quilt small feathers pretty good but I am totally horrible at feathered wreaths simply because I've not done them often. I really, really bad at the centers of the wreaths. I got a little more practice on this quilt!
I dyed a pale green backing for this quilt and you can see the texture of the quilting really well here. There's a 4" feathered border and feathered medallions to go with it. I probably should have feathered every block but I wasn't going to rip out any stitches to start over.
This quilt is going to my cousin who will really appreciate having something made by her Aunt but she will not care about, and probably not notice, the quilting. Our policy is that we give people blankets to cuddle with so we don't stress the construction details.
To show you how big this quilt is, here it is draped over the queen guest bed. I think this could also serve on a king size bed.
I'm glad I don't have to bind it.
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.
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