Sunday, August 31, 2014

Piles of Progress

Evidence of progress on Sea Glass could be seen in various piles around the sewing room. First the trimmings from squaring up the blocks...

Then the paper strips removed from the backs...

And what to do with the pile of leftover strips that have been cut?

Why add chartreuse, of course, and make a few wonky Log Cabin blocks. I think I'll make a few more and work these into a pillow top. Early on there were two blocks where I made the centre white strip too wide; maybe I'll make another 2 to match them and work them into a pillow as well....M

Thursday, August 28, 2014


Sea Glass has been sitting on the sewing table for much of the summer waiting to be picked up again. Jean called yesterday to say that she'd like to be able to deliver the quilt to the newlyweds in October, so that proved to be enough incentive to sit down to it again.

I'd been dragging my feet with it, but it really didn't take that long to finish putting together all of the blocks. I had 16 foundation papers prepped with the centre white strip, and lots of blue and grey strips ready to go, so in two evenings I've managed to get them all together.

I got to work ripping the papers from the back of the blocks only to realize that I had not trimmed the blocks first. Duh. Time for bed.


A while back my machine was freed from the painter's tape mummification that I had used to prevent the ink transfer from the phone book foundation papers to the table surface, but I noticed a little bit of build-up of ink as I was finishing, so I used some hand sanitizer to wipe it off and it's as good as new (I'd just used it a few days ago to take pine gum off the car so thought it might work here too - who knew?). The second thing I did was change my needle; it's dull as can be from working through all of that paper.....M

Monday, August 25, 2014

A Little 'Gardening'

It's been busy at work lately and we've also been enjoying a few late summer visitors and special occasions, so stitching isn't getting top billing these days. That said, I have been playing with the sashing strips for Danuta's Garden a tad. These little blocks are fun to put together and I love how the string of blocks evolves as it grows.

There will be 7 long sashing strips that will need 29 4-patch blocks so I have a ways to go on that front, but I have a dozen put together for the first strip. I've got several dozen of the little 4-patch blocks together and pressed so I should see some progress now. These tiny hits of colour remind me of flower buds.

I also need to make 48 3-block sashing pieces, and have 4 done except for the corners, so this baby has a ways to go, which is just fine. I'm in no rush and think that it will be fun to sew during the chilly autumn/winter months - those yellow dots are bright and cheery and will warm things up a bit.

Things were spread out all over the kitchen table one day when I needed to do a quick clean-up job because we were having company so everything got stuffed into this little fruit basket from the farmer's market. It's cute but has limited real estate so I'll need to find something else to store it in soon. Not a bad problem to have....M

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Anne Has Been Busy

I'm a little overdue in getting the update on Anne's blue and white HST quilt to you, but she's just sent me a few photos so there's no time like the present.

We had a little layout session a few weeks ago and she already had HST blocks sewn in sets of 4, so when she pulled them up off the floor she just kept them in that order.

A second visit to Jane's cottage produced the finished top. Actually, I think that there is going to be a white border on it before its completely finished. This one could be a record because it was about 3 weeks from start to finish.

Despite being up to her teeth in kitchen renovations, she found time to finish putting it together and I think that it exceeded even her expectations. It is very pretty, and I suspect will become a favourite throw once she gets her new sunroom organized....M

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Lets Make a Deal

I spent a little time making a deal with myself - if I'm starting Danuta's Garden (and I have) I wanted to finish off the row of Wonky Stars, get it attached to my Postage Stamp quilt and move this one to the finished column.

The stars have been laid out on the floor waiting for another one or two to be added to the end, and they have been there for a few weeks now, so it was time to get everything put together.

It came together nicely in the end and I'm lovin' the result. There are 3,024 2-inch square hand-pieced blocks, but the stars (13-inch blocks) were made on the machine. And if you look closely around the top and right edges you can see the purple diamond border pattern that I worked in.

Those stars are really fun to make - I'd like to make a baby quilt out of them.

The size of the blocks didn't fit perfectly with the length of the quilt so I added two pieces of sashing in the bottom left corner - just one more bit of scrappiness....M

Saturday, August 09, 2014

The Back Story

A few of you have asked for more details about the Danuta's Garden quilt that Jane, Linda and I are all now working on, so I thought I'd share a bit of the back story on it.

Mom and I made this quilt for a friend of Anne's in the late 90s. I had found it in an ad in a quilting magazine so we drafted it and put it together. The original pattern was shown in very traditional, muted tones - lots of browns and creams and a bit of pink - but we made with a wide variety of florals and a yellow print for the block and sashing backgrounds.

I didn't pay much attention to the quilt name but still have the dog eared clipping.

The other day I happened to turn it over. Imagine my surprise when I realized that it is a Civil War pattern (who knew??!).

Designed by Patchwork On Stonleigh, it came out after Judie Rothermel released her first Civil War fabric collection, and apparently was very popular - it sounds like she sold tons of patterns and did lots of workshops on it; it doesn't appear to be available any longer. Surprisingly, I haven't been able to find other images of it online, with the exception of this one at Julia's Place

It's amazing how different it looks in brighter fabrics.

We're using 3" blocks for the 9-patches (actually, I think that mine are just a tad smaller) and everything flows from there. We also continue the Ohio Star blocks into the corners rather than the 4 different blocks in the original design.

Now that I have a little string of sashing together it will be fun to compare it to Linda and Jane's....M

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

Cutting, Cutting, and More Cutting

We enjoyed a great long weekend, taking in a football game in Ottawa, catching up on long overdue sleep and reading, sipping cold drinks on the deck, and generally having a wonderful time. Not much sewing included in that list but I did resolve to finally finish cutting up all the strips that I had prepared for Minnie into hexies. Easier said than done.

I continually underestimated how many strips that I had, but took a stab at it. Good progress was made Friday night but at least half of the strips remained.

Fresh fruit is in season now so Sunday I decided to whip up my much-loved Crostada (I'm sure you're sick of hearing just how much I love this dessert - thank you Ina Garten). Mmmmm, mmmmmm, mmmmmm.

Not sure if it was the sugar boost from dessert or just having time on my side, but I finally conquered those strips, and have a lovely little pile of hexies cut and ready to sew. It doesn't look like much but there are lots here. I know I'll need more as I get into the larger rounds but will cut those as I need them so that the strips don't start getting all ratty.  Finally!....M