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Saturday, September 22, 2012

Correcting quilting mistakes

When I stopped working on the quilting of CC's 2nd flannel plaid quilt earlier this year, I knew I was going to have to face an unpleasant task later. I apparently didn't pin baste well enough, because the backing shifted or stretched (or both), and I have a lot of pintucks that I need to rip out. A lot. I thought I had made pretty good headway in ripping out the quilting where the pintucks were tonight, but I discovered as I was folding it up for the evening that I have quite a bit more to do. I was using a walking foot when I quilted it, but even that didn't help me avoid the numerous mistakes. The front looks fine, but the back is a mess, so a lot of it has to come out.

At first, my husband suggested that I not worry about them, after all, it is just another utility quilt for him, another blankie similar to his first one. The problem with that is that he turns the front of the quilt -- the pretty flannel side -- towards himself, and so the backing is always visible, because he likes the softest side next to his skin. So I will continue to rip out the quilting in those areas until all of the pintucks are gone. It is slow going, because ripping out quilting is a lot more time consuming than ripping out seams from piecing. I have to be very careful not to rip the fabric as I slide the seam ripper under the quilting stitches.

Part of me wonders if I might have been finished by now if I had hand quilted it in the first place. I think I'm going to hand quilt the rest of it, once it is ready to requilt. That way I'll be able to avoid those nasty pintucks again, and he can finally have his new blankie sometime in the near future. I'll try to post a picture tomorrow.

Edited to add photo - this is just a small sampling, unfortunately. :( I have to rip all the quilting stitches to the edge to be able to fix them.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

April basket finally finished

Here is my basket by itself and in the frame, pieced, appliquéd and quilted.

Just 8 more to do - I don't think I'll be able to catch up by the end of the year, but at least I've made some progress.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

April basket appliqué

Here is the blanket stitch hand appliquéd section of my April basket block (click for a larger view). I really like how this turned out.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Another old quilt WIP sees progress

This is my Monthly Baskets Block of the Month project, April block in progress - I had cut out the fused pieces over a year ago, but that's as far as I got before I was off on something else.

Today I finally pulled out the pieces and some other fabrics and paper-pieced the basket bottom, and fused the pieces to the basket top. Now I need to appliqué them down, then piece them together, add the borders and quilt! I think I recall saying that this is the year of the UFO back in January, and I'm trying to put some meaning behind that. :)

I'm tempted to hand appliqué it, but I'm afraid of pulling the bias edges too much Any suggestions? Or should I just go ahead and machine appliqué it (less pulling, more guiding the stitches)?

Edited to add: I decided to go ahead and hand appliqué the pieces. I finished two eggs tonight and started on the bunny. The colors of floss I'm using are pretty low contrast to the pieces and the stitches are so close together that it almost looks like satin stitches. I really like the look, and can't wait to share another picture!

A little Dream progress

So here is the latest progress on my first panel of Dream. I'm much happier with the colors in the sky.

Now I need to go pull some fabrics to blend up to the purple at the top (and I'll probably do some additional substitutions with the ones pinned up there currently). As always, it's a work in progress.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Plume block complete

Today I finished up my Plume block for the Blocks from the Past quilt.

I also worked a little on my Dream a Little Dream appliqué, but didn't get a picture before the sun went down, so I'll save that for tomorrow. I need to start picking fabrics for the other pieces and getting them ready to sew down. I'm pleased with the new wools I've chosen so far, and am looking forward to choosing the rest of them for this panel.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Another couple of plums

I'm guessing I'll see a happy dance within the next week or so - I've added a few more plums, and I've reached the bottom left corner of the design.

I also finished binding the second placemat today, so that's happy dance 2 of 10!

Going to listen to my latest audiobook (Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn) while I do a little appliqué now - what a beautiful weekend it is turning out to be!

Monday, September 10, 2012

Placemat happy dance 1 of 10

Yes, I am counting each one completed as a happy dance. :)

I think I may have mentioned before - I have all the quilting done on all 10, I just need to put the binding on.

So here is the first one finished, front and back views. Just 9 more to bind. I think I should be able to get these finished in time for Thanksgiving dinner (that's when I plan to present them - sometimes she uses her Christmas placemats or china for dinner, especially if we aren't getting together for an actual big Christmas dinner).

Sunday, September 09, 2012

A couple of little quilt updates

After taking care of household chores and grocery shopping, I finally made it into my sewing room this afternoon. The first thing I did was make up the block of the month that I picked up yesterday. Here is Chocolate Truffle [[[yum!]]]

Then I pulled out my book and a few fabrics (actually from my Dream a Little Dream wallhanging box), and put together the third pieced block for the Blocks From the Past quilt. This one is called Windblown Square.

Then I realized that I haven't finished the blanket stitch appliqué on another block from that quilt, so I pulled that back out to work on tonight while we watch television. I didn't get very far before I put it away, so I'm hoping to get some nice progress in tonight.

And here is a slightly updated picture of Dream a Little Dream. I have been appliquéing some of the triangle pieces, the chimney, and and I've just started stitching down the roof.

It still shows the original felt pieces pinned to the background because I haven't yet moved them around and cut out new pieces from my recent stash acquisitions - I've just been fondling them like a precious ring. :) Once I get the roof stitched down, I'll get on to the one on the left, then the others as I make my way up the sky.

And I'm trying to decide which block I'm going to start with on the Hop To It (From My Garden) quilt. CC is already trying to convince me to change the bunny to a cat...

Saturday, September 08, 2012

Fessing up, part two

Today is the second Saturday of the month, so it's an automatic quilt-y Saturday, because I get to go over to the Quilter's Attic in Goodlettsville and pick up my block of the month kit from them.

We did that, then had a nice lunch out in downtown Nashville, and then we drove down to Franklin to The Quilting Squares (we are blessed to have several really awesome quilt shops around the area). I had talked to them yesterday and asked if they had any wool felt (I thought I had seen some the last time I was there, but that was several years ago), and I talked to this really nice woman. She was very helpful, and said she'd be happy to share some tips and that she would be in the store today.

As soon as we walked in the store, I was pleasantly surprised to see a former quilting co-worker. My husband and I had just been talking about her, as this was the store where we both went and took our first machine quilting class together. Turns out she recently started working there (talk about dream job after retirement!!!!). We caught up just a bit, and then I met with Judy, and we talked about wool appliqué.

And here's where we get to the fessing up part. I found some new pieces of wool felt that I just had to have. And then I picked up some Valdani perle cotton in some pretty matching colors. And I picked up some flannel for backgrounds for the Hop To It quilt I'm going to do... And then I picked up some flannel for the sashing for said quilt.

Here is my stash haul from the trip today. Apologies that the picture is a little fuzzy.

I labeled everything except there are 3 spools of Mettler thread beside the Valdani. I needed a few extra colors for the non-wool appliqué.

And when I got home, the mailman delivered one of my other online wool orders (yummy!). I am really looking forward to replacing those pieces of felt in my Dream wallhanging, and then getting started on my Hop To It quilt! :)

Thursday, September 06, 2012

Fessing up

After seeing that beautiful quilt on Tuesday (Hop To It in flannel with felt appliqué - for an idea of what the blocks look like with wool, check out The Quilted Pineapple's blog posts on her Hop To It quilt), I went a little crazy...

I started out by ordering the book.

Then I ordered some felt.

This is from Dimensions - I had no idea they had entered the felt fray. It's 12" x 12" and 100% wool. I ordered the following colors:

Rose, Rhubarb, Terra Cotta, Cheddar, Spruce, Dark Sage, Aqua, Pastel Blue, Midnight Blue, Nutmeg, Black, and White.

Then I ordered some more felt.

Browns, Black/Grays, Some of my favorite colors, and some scraps.

And finally, I decided to join a Block of the Month. As I said, I went a little lot crazy!!!

Fall Frolic, starting in October 2010.

Ouch, my bank account is smarting after all that. But I'm so excited to be checking the mail over the next few weeks and months!

Wednesday, September 05, 2012

Energized by my quilt guild meeting

Yesterday was my monthly quilt guild meeting, and as usual, it energized my creative juices. We had a trunk show by a guild member, who shared a portion of her antique quilts collection, as well as a portion of the quilts that she has made. We also had a UFO Challenge, and the quilts entered were awesome. One in particular caught my attention, a version of Hop To It by Edyta Sitar, but made with flannel background fabrics and felted wool appliqué pieces. It was also hand quilted.

It got me to thinking about a project that I haven't worked on in quite a while - Dream a Little Dream by LizzieB Cre8ive. I pulled that project out and tried to reacquaint myself with it. I created some more of the appliqué pieces, and I actually sewed one down. I had previously machine appliquééd the green hills and the house body with the two windows down, but nothing else. Last night I hand-appliquéd the red door. Everything else is pinned in place. Also, this is just one of three panels.

And here is the latest on my plums pillow.

Next post I'll fess up to what I ordered online... :)