Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Moving update

Just a quick post to update my move. Our house in Florida is sold and after a whirlwind trip to Georgia and a couple days of negotiations we have purchased a home near one of our sons. So many of you have sent lovely words of encouragement the last few months and I thank you so much for your support. Quilting and blogging friends are the best! The next few weeks I will be busy packing and organizing for the move so no time for stitching. But even though we are downsizing I will have a small sewing room to start and then DH will be finishing the basement into a huge sewing studio. Something fun to look forward to but the best news is that we found a house 5 minutes from the grandchildren.

Today was my last sewing day as I scrambled to put this top together to get ready for the packing. The picture is not the best but I am pleased with the finished quilt.

Until next time, happy stitching!


Monday, April 7, 2014

Moving Along

First up, some exciting news. Last Friday we sold our house. If you have been reading my blog for awhile you might remember that last year at this time I was showing photos of the decor of the house I had just moved into. Yep, just a year later and I look to be moving again. However, I am not quite ready to celebrate as these things do not always work out as planned. This is the second time this house sold but the first time the people buying had to back out do to the loss of the buyer for their home. So, I am praying and hoping that this time works out. So difficult to know how to move forward when you live in fear that the deal may fall through.

In any case, it is time to start getting rid of stuff again, calling movers for estimates and hopefully start house hunting. I really, really want this to be the last move for many years so we will downsize and simplify, or at least that is the plan.

And it also means that it is time to start packing up the studio. I am trying to finish piecing a few things so it is easier to put them away so I have spent much of today putting this top together. Here it is just thrown up on the design wall yesterday and a few things have been moved since then. Not much time for careful balancing of colors and hopefully I can finish it up tomorrow. Another aqua border will be added and then a final border of HSTs.

I am not sure how long I will be absent from blogging as the days ahead look very busy but I will be catching up when I can and hopefully I will be back soon!

Happy stitching!


Thursday, April 3, 2014

Border issues

I am so excited that I have this border finished! It was certainly a challenge for me to get it to fit and I am still puzzled as to what went wrong.

Since I know there are others out there working on the Di Ford Mystery in Quiltmania magazine, I am going to explain my issue in the hopes of figuring it out. First, the pattern for the templates was not included in the magazine but quickly Quiltmania realized their mistake and made the pattern available for download on their website. I printed a copy and double checked to make sure they were accurate.

Using the magazine measurements I cut all the triangles with no problem. The problem for me seemed to come from the measurement of the squares. The pattern suggested drawing a grid of 2" squares and then appliquéing the circles before cutting the individual squares. After reading that there were a few people having size issues on the FB group I decided to piece the border before doing the appliqué. In the template diagram the square measurement is 1 3/8 meaning a cut size of 1 7/8, not the 2 " mentioned for drawing the grid. I was confused but Di Ford herself clarified on the FB group that the cut size was to be 1 7/8 so that is what I cut.

But I sewed my border and ended up almost 1" short of the 24 1/2 measurement that is should have been. I was frustrated but decided to spray it with Best Press and stretch it slightly while ironing to see if I could fix it some. While that is not a great fix it did work and I decided to sew the next border. This time I moved the needle over one position and change to Aurifil thread to see if things would improve. They did not so I finished my borders using my "fix" with Best Press to make them fit. But I was so frustrated as I was sewing so carefully and had double and triple checked my cutting and seam allowance measurements.

I then decided to measure the square template realizing that the diagonal need to be 2". Yes, that was perfect.

So finally I measured the square and what did I find but that it was just over 1 3/8" by almost 1/16". Unfortunately due to the angle of the photo this is not quite clear.

Ok that does not seem like much but for me it did seem to make a difference or probably it really is fine and it is just my stitching or perhaps my pressing. Those piecing by hand using the templates seem to have no fit issues and Di and others seem to have no issues piecing by machine with the 1 7/8 measurement, so I am stumped as to why it would not work for me. I would love to hear from anyone else who can explain it or to hear how it worked for you if you are making this quilt. This has been a year that I am trying to improve my piecing so any suggestions would be appreciated!


Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Happy Spring

Though I don't often share photos of my family I could not resist sharing this picture of my granddaughter laying on a quilt I made several years ago. I love how her little dress matches the quilt!



Monday, March 31, 2014

On my design wall today

After a delightful visit with my son, daughter-in-law and two adorable grandchildren, I am back in the sewing room. Here is what my design wall looks like today.

You may have noticed that I have been working with lots of red and teals lately and that is inspired by the decorator fabric to the left of the design wall. Just before we realized that we needed to sell this house and move again, I had purchased this fabric online to make drapes for my living area. Due to some weird snafu the company shipped more than I ordered and I have lots of this fabric ready to set the decorating tone for wherever we end up. Good job I love the fabric! Anyway, I figure I can make lots of quilts in these colors that can be used anywhere, walls or beds or as throws and it gives me something to have fun with during this long time of waiting for this house to sell.

Here are a few more of the finished pomegranate blocks for the Jacobean Elegance quilt. I just love how they are turning out.

And I have started on Part 2 of the Di Ford mystery. These are little rosettes for the corner blocks of the next border. They are made up of 1/2" hexagons and squares.

And I have pulled these fabrics to use in this round.

And despite thinking I was finished with Mysteries and BOMs for awhile, I have pulled fabrics for Barbara Brackmans's new Block of the Week. This one focuses on Jane Austen and is on her new blog, the Austen Family Album. As a huge Jane Austen fan, I just could not resist this one. Each week a new block will be released as well as some information about Jane Austen and her life and times. It starts on April 6 and I can't wait. These fabrics are primarily from an old Moda line called Chelsea Boutique. I just loved this line when it came out but could not find it in my LQS so it was my first FQ bundle purchased online. I have been hoarding it while looking for the perfect project and I am finally ready to use it. I have added some teals and reproduction fabrics and have some yardage that I found on sale a few years ago.

And finally, this week's installment of McCall's Quilting Make it Your Way quilt along blocks. Some simple 9 patch blocks to add to the mix. All the blocks made so far are on the design wall but not arranged as they will be in the quilt. I am surprised how much I am loving this one.


Sunday, March 23, 2014

Tuella and Friends quilt finished!!

I am so happy to have a quilted and bound quilt to show. Due to my back surgery in September, I have been unable to do much quilting for the past year. Pain both before and after meant that I could work on tops but no actually finish them. But knowing that I am going to visit my grandchildren tomorrow gave me the incentive to give it a try. I have still not used the longarm since moving to this house and I did not want to even think about trying that so did this on a domestic machine.

I am so happy with how it turned out. I thought I would just do some in the ditch stitching and outline the appliqué but once that was done I knew a few details and background filler would bring it to life. Here are a few close ups of some of my favorite blocks.

My quilting is by no means perfect but I am so happy to have a finish and look forward to hanging it on the wall in my granddughter's room. My DIL has been patiently waiting since Sarah's arrival almost 6 months ago!



Thursday, March 20, 2014

Soupçon Part 6

The FPP is finished, yippee! I have even removed all the papers and that means that Soupçon part 6 is finished. Now I just have to decide if this project is finished or if I want to continue adding borders to make it bigger. Karen of Faeries and Fibres did a great job with this Mystery QAL and I certainly learned a lot and am pleased with the results. Thanks Karen!