Monday, August 17, 2009

Summer is Winding Down

Our first day of school is the day after Labor Day. Our local schools start today, but we home school so can pick our start date. We enjoy these last couple of weeks of summer very much and this year it's much cooler than usual for the middle/end of August and that is just adding to the pleasure of these days.

I have even surprised myself with how much quilting/sewing I've done this summer. Usually I'm more than ready for Fall to arrive so I can ramp up the quilting, and in spite of what I've accomplished, I actually could do more if the computer didn't call my name so often.

The table runner went far faster than I thought possible and the quilting and binding were finished just 3 days after I started.
The completed table runner gave me a boost to finish the last of the blocks for Debbie's quilt. I assembled this one as each row was finished as there is applique where the blocks connect and that would be easier without so much bulk. I'm looking forward to beginning the quilting on this one. I plan to mark it in the next couple of days and baste in the next week or so. We had a few warm and muggy days, today isn't so warm but is very damp because of rain, so hand quilting isn't appealing today. It's to be in the lower 70s by the end of the week, though, which is very cool for this time of year here, so if the basting isn't done the purple paper pieced quilt may get some more attention. Here is Debbie's top.
I trimmed down the triangle paper I printed off so I may ready and sew a few pieces of that to get the next scrap quilt started. I also need to mark and trim the blocks for the next strip pieced quilt, which is good muggy weather work.

I couldn't resist this pose. Sometimes Ruthie will ham it up for the camera, other times I try to catch something she's doing and she'll move before I can get it. She got passed down a bunch of princess dress up, she loves it. Yesterday she spent most of the day running around in this dress. Princess Ruthie had finally worn herself out. Hopefully my next post will find Debbie's quilt well under way and a couple of new projects under way as well. Remember this one? I LOVE this top and came across it straightening up the growing pile of quilts in my sewing room. I've promised myself I'd finish the purple paper pieced top before moving onto the flying geese top, I'm hoping that will be the incentive I need to forge ahead with the purple one. I love it, but the blocks are tedious to quilt and it's sucking the fun out of it some. I know that I'll be very glad to have it finished, so it stays out where I can see it. I'm going to try to quilt at least a block a day on it (not a huge feat, the blocks are only 6 inches) and hopefully quilting one will lead to another. If not, one a day will eventually get it done!

I've also pulled out the Posies and Celtic top. I finished sewing one side of all the sashing pieces down some time ago, that's the most tedious part because it's where the placement and trimming of pieces happens, so now I just have to sew down the second side of it all. I spent a good part of the last couple of days doing that and am now getting to where there isn't much left. The big problem is I still haven't figured out what to do with the outer border. I haven't even sewn it on, yet, because I didn't want to limit what I could do there. I want to put another celtic design but decided using the same green as the sashing would be way too much green. I had hoped to find a floral that incorporated a similar green and at least a few of the other colors, but so far no luck.
I have a book of celtic borders and I figure if I peruse it enough, and keep checking out my stash that something might come to me. This one will have a huge amount of quilting on it, it's being quilted like the table toppers I made last year and will also have all the celtic that needs to be quilted around. I'm looking forward to this one, but know it will probably be a long term quilting project as it will be quite tedious to do.
In the meantime, it can't be quilted until it's done, and nothing will get done with me sitting here! So off I go, to sew down some celtic, pin a few triangle paper fabrics for sewing and to do a bit of quilting on the purple quilt. My inlaws are here for the day tomorrow, so a bit of straightening needs to be done as well. That will happen later in the day as, with all the coming and going here, anything done this early will surely be undone by later!
Happy quilting!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Flying Along

Much to my surprise, Emma's quilt is done! I really didn't expect it to go quite this quickly, though I did get an inkling early on. I'm really happy with the results and hope she will be, too.Debbie's is not anymore ready for the hoop than it was last time I mentioned it as I've been solely working on Emma's quilt. I hope to rectify this in short order but first I have one more project that needs to be finished.

It's a sobering thought when your children's friends start getting married. Our daughters went to a bridal shower yesterday and only had a week notice so I pitched in for the gift. Our 4 older kids will all be going to the wedding and are all chipping in and buying them something off of their registry. I told them I would add a table runner to the gift if they wanted me to, and they did.

Interestingly, I had pulled this project so I had something to quilt on between Emma's and Debbie's, if need be, and we decided last week it would make a perfect gift for their friends. As it turns out, the dishes they got are brown and green, so this should be a really nice compliment to them. This pattern was designed by my friend, Tyanne, you can find this pattern and many others on her website. This is also quilting up much more quickly than I thought, I started last night and everything to the right of the hoop (except the border) is already quilted. The printed section at right edge of the hoop is the center point, so I'm more than half done. I expect to be working on the border this evening and hopefully binding (it's already made) in the next couple of days.

Keeping to my promise to myself to have something in the hoop at all times, I pulled out another basted, unfinished quilt. These blocks were made as part of an internet swap several years back. A few of the blocks are quilted, but at the time I started the quilting it seemed really tedious and I probably had to set it aside for a gift project. On this one, I'm quilting in the ditch on the paper pieced blocks to give the blocks texture. Since with paper piecing the pieces are often small (these are 6 inch blocks) this seemed the best way to quilt this one. The alternating blocks have continuous line motifs in them, which are fast and fun to quilt. I'm not sure how much of this will get done before Debbie's top is finished. I suspect that knowing this is what it is in the hoop will have me appliquing more, LOL, but we'll see. I really love to hand quilt and I'm more determined than ever to finish up some of the tops I have waiting around here. With the hangers of made binding on them, I have a visual reminder of the work that is waiting for me. I'll feel much better about working on new things if those hangers start to empty out a bit.

I have a few projects that are really starting to call my name, but I'm trying to not get too involved in anything else until these "must do" projects are finished.

Of course, any time the camera is out, Miss Ruthie insists that her picture be taken, too. And now it's time to wrap this up and get to work.

Happy Quilting!