Tuesday, August 31, 2010

String Quilt and Four Patches

Here is a photo of the string quilt top that I put together from some of the blocks I showed you in my previous post.  What did I learn from this project?  Well, I love doing the string blocks, and they are like potato chips - you can't make just one.  I have some left so I'll be making another top in the future.  But notice in the photo that there are two different sizes of string blocks.  I had planned to put the smaller blocks in the center and set them 4 squares by 4 squares.  Then I was going to put 5 of the larger blocks around the outside.  What I didn't take into account was that when you have an odd number of blocks and have that strong diagonal stripe down the center of each block having an odd number causes one of the corner diagonals to go up ....but not down.  So I trimmed a few things and added a few things along with inner borders and got it all put together.  I'll also post this over on the It's A String Thing Challenge blog.

While I was working on the string quilt, I stopped and cut a few strips from some scraps of greens and pinks. I now have a nice sized container of 2 1/2" strips that are somewhat coordinated and this pile of four patch blocks.  I really didn't start a new project....honest.  I was just taking a break from the string quilt.

I hope you are finding some time to stitch today. 

Thursday, August 26, 2010

String Blocks Finished

Today  I finished a pile of string blocks.  A few months ago - I can't remember exactly when - I joined the It's A String Thing Challenge over on Stacey's blog.  The button is over in my sidebar to the right.  We were to make one string quilt a month and donate it to our favorite charity.  I made this block a couple of months ago but wasn't quite sure I liked the colors so I put it aside.

Then I found a stack of bright fabrics that I cut up for a set of string blocks.  Most of the strips are cut at 1 1/2" but there are others that are varying widths.

These are the blocks that I've made in the last couple of days.  There are two different sizes.  I'm working on a setting.
Then I found this fabric that I really like with the blocks.....maybe a border?
These are really a lot of fun.   On these blocks I spent time drawing diagonal lines on all of my foundation papers so my black strip would be straight down the center.  As I worked I realized that I could just fold the paper in half to mark the center, which went a lot faster.  I will try and add a tutorial in a day or two.

I think there are enough blocks in the above photo for a quilt, so I started on blocks for a second string quilt.  They are a bit like potato chips...you can't make just one.  I like the strong diagonal lines.

A different setting possibility. 
And another:
These are a lot of fun and pretty fast to make. 
I don't know if there is enough of the floral for a border for both quilts.
With luck I'll get the quilt top sewn together this weekend.  Then I'll go over and post a photo on It's A String Thing Challenge Blog.      Happy stitching everyone!!!!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Round Robin and Crochet Blanket Finish

My daughter and her cat, Squeaky, are visiting this week for a few days before classes start at Purdue so there hasn't been a lot of sewing done this week.  But, I did get the finishing touches put on a round robin quilt from about 5 years ago.  I thought I had sewn the binding down after I had it machine quilted, but apparently I only put the binding on by machine and didn't do the rest of the hand work.  Here is the finished quilt.  I did the center, of course.  Edith did the applique' flowers.  Pam did the stars from the Dear Hannah book with stripes in between.  Nancy K. did the applique' border with the swags and rust stars in the corners.  Nancy Z. did the triangle border, and Claire finished off with the outside borders.  I love a medallion quilt, and I think that is why the whole round robin process appeals to me.  I am really happy with how this quilt turned out.  I am in a round robin now that will finish in November.   I'll post photos of those later on. 

 I have also been crocheting an afghan for a baby gift.  I got a bit carried away and really liked this pattern so I just kept going.....and the afghan kept growing.  Most new Moms have a lot of small baby blankets anyway, right?   The baby won't be able to lift this one until she is old enough to start school.  I still like it because it is bright and happy and plan to give it to her anyway. 
Hope you are finding some time to stitch today!!!!! 

Friday, August 13, 2010

Another Finished Top

This is a UFO that I've had in progress for quite awhile.  About 4 or 5 years ago, a friend gave me the fabric pack that contained all of these gorgeous fabrics because she said they "looked like me".  She is right.   I love the rich golds, greens, and rust colors of fall and all shades in between.  I provided the backgrounds, basket fabric, and the two outside borders from my stash, but the rest including most of the applique pieces came from that fat quarter pack.  I did the applique' shortly after she gave me the fabrics and started the triangles.  Last week I finished the quilt top and added the borders, and I am pretty pleased with how it all turned out.  The pattern is called Medallion by Edyta Sitar (Laundry Basket Quilts). 

Hope you are all finding time to stitch today!!! 

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Christmas In August????

I know several of the blogs that I frequent have made hundreds or even a thousand posts.  So I decided to go to my blog list and see how many posts I've made since starting this blog.  I found 3 posts that were still listed as drafts.  I imagine that I stopped in the middle of writing and they were automatically saved.  Two of them were not finished, but this one was finished complete with photos.  So I decided to change the date and go with it.  This is from back in December. I thought maybe with the extreme heat that so many of us are having, the Christmas decorations and outside lights might cool you off a bit!!

I'm finding more decorations today. Here is a wreath quilt that I made back in the late 1990s. It hangs over the railing at the top of my stairs.

This quilt was made by my friend Gini and I. Gini and I got together to make a bunch of nine patches for charity quilts a few years ago. As we piled them in her sewing room, the red and green were stacked next to each other. I told her those would make a great Christmas quilt. So in a few days she came knocking at my door with this Christmas quilt. I machine appliqued the candy canes in the alternate squares and did the machine quilting. Every year when I unpack the decorations, this quilt always makes me smile.

Here is another crocheted granny square that my Mom made. This one has sparkles in the yarn.

This wreath is made of tiny little fabric "bags" stuffed with poly fill and tied onto a wire wreath form with red and green ribbon.

Hope you are finding some time to stitch today and that you don't think I've totally lost it!!!!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Shop Hop and Lake Retreat

Last Friday I went up to Kokomo to a Shop Hop. It didn't take much effort to "hop" because there were 24 vendors all in the same location. We got there fairly early in the morning, and by noon some of the booths were so crowded that you could hardly move around.

After we went to lunch at the McAllister's Deli in Kokomo (love their iced tea), we went on over to Heritage Lake to our annual Maple Stickler quilt retreat. This porch is so inviting. There is a gorgeous view of the lake, and it is a great place to sit and stitch with friends.

I spent some time down here by the water just enjoying the view.

This is the view of the lake house from down by the water.
There were lots of cute quilts displayed all over the cottage.  This one hanging over the upstairs railing was one of my favorites:
Janis was working on this quilt:

Lynn was doing applique' on the border of her Women of the Bible quilt.

This is one of Edith's Aunt Millie's blocks:

And another:

These are a few of my Trick or Treat baskets from When the Cold Wind Blows.

Edith's Heart and Hand applique quilt.  She was sewing the bind on.  It is wonderful. 

Elaine's applique' butterflies:

Nancy was working on a setting for some antique blocks:

Marie was doing some hand quilting:

Theresa's baskets from When The Cold Wind Blows:

One last look at the lake as we were leaving.
It's been back to reality this week.  I've been doing a bit of sewing......I hope you have too. 

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