Friday, August 23, 2019

August Color BOM for STLMQG

The skill/theme for August is Fussy Cutting.

My fabrics are mostly blenders, so most of them don't have motifs to fussy cut. The one that actually has a floral print is so light, it wouldn't show up well as fussy cut motifs. What to do? I don't want to miss a month of this BOM series; I want to be eligible for points and prizes at the end.

My color is yellow green. Actually, it's more chartreuse than green. These are the swatches I carry around for color matching. The largest motif here is 1/2".

Before I go buy something, and I don't even know what block design I'm going to use yet, I'll just check the stash and see if there's anything I can use. We're allowed one accent color along with our feature color plus neutrals. Maybe I can find something, although I haven't used an accent color yet and I'm trying not to.

I found a print I had bought for backing for something else and haven't used yet. The greens in it are greener (less yellow) so it's not a true match. But if I don't use it next to my greens, maybe I can cheat and fool the eye into thinking it's my color. These flowers are about 2-1/2" across so they're much better suited for fussy cutting than my blender prints.

Okay, I can fussy cut this print, but I need a block design that enables me to use buffer pieces of my black and white prints to separate this print from my yellow greens. What if I use a fussy cut flower as the center of a Dresden plate and make all the blades in black & white?

It's worth a try. I can use one of my blender prints as the background.

Okay, it works. It meets the requirements.

At 15" it's my largest block so far, a very bold block! It will certainly draw the eye no matter how I use it in the final layout. It will be a puzzle laying out this quilt at the end, but that's part of the challenge.

I've submitted my fussy cut block photo and they've accepted it. I wonder what the next skill or theme will be?

Linking up with Confessions of a Fabric Addict

Monday, August 19, 2019

Bunny Quilt on the Wall

I need a special baby quilt for a baby who's due in November. After three boys - and lots of boy cousins - the family is having a girl. Mama's favorite color is purple and she likes animals, so I found the cutest bunny print I know she'll love.

To let the fabrics do all the work, I'm just doing a simple triangle quilt. Here are the pieces laid out on my design wall. I pieced together a strip for the backing with the leftovers; the rest of the backing will be the bunny print.

This is something I can work on elsewhere if I kit it up, and I need several projects for off-site sewing coming up soon. To kit it up, I've labeled the columns and rows. Yes, even a triangle quilt like this goes together using the columns and rows system. I'll take the pieces in each column off the wall, and stack them from top to bottom and clip them together so they'll be in order for when I'm ready to sew.

Simple but cute.

Monday link-ups:
Small Quilts and Doll Quilts
Em's Scrapbag
Love Laugh Quilt

Friday, August 16, 2019

One Little Finish: Quilt Show Award Ribbon

My traditional guild is presenting a quilt show in October. If you're in the St. Louis MO area, check it out in the University City Library during library hours for the entire month of October.

We hold the show every other year, and each time we make the award ribbons that are presented for the winning quilts. I've made award ribbons for at least 5 or 6 shows now.  This week I made one for this year's show. It's all I accomplished this week, since I had other stuff going on. 

We build them on old CDs. Each maker chooses whatever she wants to make: pieced, appliqued, quilted, embellished, etc. Here are two from 2017; I made the green one.

The one I made this year is very dimensional. I covered the CD with gathered dark red fabric; covered a smaller circle of template plastic in the same manner, and stacked them together. I made the largest size covered button for the center. Then I added a ruffle around the outside edge.

Very festive! Only first place and Viewers Choice ribbons are required to have a ruffle, but I personally think the proportion of circle to streamers looks better when there's a bit more than just the CD. Adding a ruffle to second place and honorable mention ribbons is optional at the discretion of the maker.

The back is another covered CD, just flat no gathers. The ribbon streamers are sandwiched in between the front and back CDs. I mostly glued the layers together but per the instructions I also hand sewed the front and back CDs together, poking the needle through the ruffle, so there would be no chance of the layers coming apart.

I'll turn in the ribbon to the committee chair in early September so she'll have it in plenty of time. I'm looking forward to seeing the show in October!

The Quintessential Quilt 2019
Presented by Circle in the Square Quilters
September 30 - October 31, 2019
University City Public Library
6701 Delmar Blvd. 
University City MO 63130

Free; open during regular library hours.
Supported by CSQ fundraiser quilt on display at the library; tickets available at the desk. 
More info available at

Linking up with Confessions of a Fabric Addict and Wendy's Quilts and More

Monday, August 12, 2019

Moving a UFO Along

One of my goals for this month is to look at my UFO list and pick something to finish, or at least to move forward. I've chosen Roman Road.

Roman Road was a BOM from a local shop from about 4 years ago. Each month we got a kit for the main block (the star blocks) and an alternate block. My friend Cherie suggested a modification to the alternate block and I liked her version better. Then I adapted it further for the border, which is not at all like the shop sample. The flimsy is 73" square.

The flimsy was finished in February 2018. My long armer friend Sandy was going to quilt it for me, but she was in the process of moving to another state so that didn't work out. Earlier this year after she was settled into her new home and welcoming commissions, I sent Roman Road to her and she returned it with beautiful custom quilting when we got together in Paducah in April.

Now it just needs to be bound and labeled. I prepped the binding, which is one of three constant fabrics in this quilt, used in the alternate blocks. I'm hoping to get this quilt completely finished this month.

I have friends in Arizona that I plan to give this quilt to the next time we're out there. They are very special quilt-worthy friends, and these colors suit them and their home.

It'll be nice to have Roman Road off the UFO list.

Link ups:
Small Quilts and Doll Quilts
Em's Scrapbbag
Love Laugh Quilt

Friday, August 9, 2019


De-threaded, pressed, and ready for the quilter.

There were about a bazillion threads to pick off the back of those checkerboards.
I mostly concentrated on getting the dark ones that might show through the light fabrics. 

I absolutely love the backing fabric. The perfect colors, the perfect era and mood. 

I'm meeting with the quilter tomorrow. 
I'm giving her wool batting, light weight but lovely drape and texture. 
I can't wait for her to perform her magic on this top!

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

A Few Little Updates

Some random goings-on in my quilting world...

Recently, Wanda of Exuberant Color sent me a very generous gift of pre-cut 5" squares and some yardage  for backing to use in my donation quilts for kids. Such cute prints, and I love the vibrant colors! Thank you, Wanda. There's over 8 yards of fabric here, which will make several children's quilts. I'll share these pieces with friends in my guild who are also making kids quilts.

Speaking of fabrics for kids quilts, I need to make a special baby girl quilt before Thanksgiving. Mom already has three boys, and there are lots of boy cousins, so this little girl will be very special. Mom's favorite color is purple, so I've selected a palette of sweet feminine prints featuring purple with aqua. Bunnies and butterflies, several flower prints, bows, puppies, and bubbles. My plan is to make a tumbler quilt and let the fabrics shine. The darkest purple will be the binding as well as occasional tumblers. I'll get this cut, laid out, and kitted up for offsite sewing later.

I'm participating in Kevin the Quilter's Simply Sensational Summer Scrap Quilt Mystery.

I'm making half the number of units his plan calls for, and I'll adapt them into a smaller quilt than his. I've completed my pieces and parts for Clue Two. My Clue One color was blue.

This week I'm working on prepping the backing for the Checkerboards and Dresdens quilt and de-threading the back of the top. I have an appointment with the quilter on Saturday, so I need to get everything ready to go by then. There are a lot of little frayed edges on those checkerboard pieces, and I don't want any dark threads showing through behind the light squares. There are about a million threads!!!

My traditional guild is presenting a quilt show in the U City library in October and I signed up to make one of the award ribbons. I need to get going on that so I can get it turned in on time. We make them using old CDs and each one is unique. Time to get busy! Here are a couple from our last show; I made the green one. This year I'm making a red one.

So that's it for random updates from my studio for now. I think I have enough going on tho keep me busy for awhile.

Friday, August 2, 2019

Checkerboards and Dresdens: A Finished Flimsy

AKA "The Red Project"

22 months in work. 103" square. 1,869  2" squares.  According to EQ, about 19 yards of fabric used.

240 Dresden blades and 48 snowballed corners.

It weighs a ton! All those seam allowances in the checkerboards sure add up. 36% of the fabric used in them is hidden in the seam allowances. *

It feels really good to have accomplished this. One Dresden and one checkerboard per month for the center, then monthly goals for the borders.

At 103" it's so big it hits the ground from my deck rail. I'm hoping that after quilting and shrinkage it'll finish at 98".

Since I couldn't find suitable border fabric for my original plan, I extended the full width of the checkerboards into the border. I'm glad I did because the quilt doesn't look as heavy, dark, and wintery as my original EQ renderings.

The revised border plan also included a 2" dark blue outer border, but this quilt is already bigger than I need, so I'm opting to omit the final border. I think it's fine without it. There's a lot of seams at the outer edges so I stay-stitched around the outside so none of those seams will start to open up.

I have an appointment to take it to the quilter next weekend. This week I'll prep the backing and de-thread the back side of the top. That'll probably take me all week and it's a tedious job, but it has to be done; there's a lot of threads.

* Seam allowances:
2" finished square is 4 square inches.
Cut patch is 2.5" which is 6.25 square inches.
6.25 minus 4 is 2.25 square inches not visible, used in seam allowances.
2.25 is 36% of 6.25, meaning more than a third of the fabric used is hidden in the seam allowances but definitely contributes to the weight of this top.

Linking up with Whoop Whoop Friday over at Confessions of a Fabric Addict - this is definitely whoop-worthy.

Other link ups:
Wendy's Quilts and More
My Quilt Infatuation
Small Quilts and Doll Quilts
Em's Scrapbag
Love Laugh Quilt

Thursday, August 1, 2019

July Stash Report and Goals Recap

July was a big month for stash acquisition. In my defense, though, it wasn't entirely my fault. But I'll gladly take it and I hope to use it all someday.

July was also a good month for making progress on some big long-term projects, my WIVSP hand piecing project and my Dresdens and Checkerboards project.

Let's look at the stats.

July Stash Report:
IN this month: 24-3/8 yards (Connecting Threads order - 15 yards.  CSQ door prize charm pack, 5/8 yard. Gift from Wanda, 8-3/4 yards.) 

OUT this month: 9-1/4 yards (Coral Floral, two flimsies, 3-1/4 yards. Black + White backing - 2-1/4 yards and binding, 3/8 yard. Strings and strips given away - 3-3/8 yards (1.3 pounds).)

IN YTD: 84-3/8 yards
OUT YTD: 63-5/8 yards
YTD Net Change: 20-3/4 yards added to stash

I fully take responsibility for that 15 yard order, but at only $3.44 a yard, that can go toward donation quilts. My stash grew due to the generosity of others, but I also gave away all the leftover strips, strings and off-cuts from my "Goodnight Darlene" quilt. Kevin might be able to use them; I know I never will.

Although I finished some baby quilts, their backings were fleece or flannel, and I never counted those materials into the stash, so I'm not counting them out. I did count the gorgeous paisley for the black+white quilt's backing, both in and out this month.

July Recap:
1. Quilt and finish the black + white project.  DONE.
2. Make more checkerboard units for the revised border of the Red Project. Yes, made A LOT of progress on this project this month.
3. Finish the Coral Floral project. Yes, two finished baby quilts. 
4. Participate in 12 Days of Christmas in July Blog Hop. DONE.
5. Keep up with bee blocks and BOMs. DONE.
6. Work on hand stitching WIGSP Piecing Group project. Yes, stitched a lot on it this month! 3/4 of one of the unsewn rows in the photo below is now sewn.
7. Continue working on the collaboration project with friends if possible. Not possible due to scheduling. 
8. Optional: Look through scraps and stash and decide whether to participate in Kevin the Quilter's mystery on a smaller scale. If so, keep up with clues. Yes, I'm playing along, although on a half scale. Made 120 blue four patches.  

Wow, seems like I got a lot done this month. It's been so hot, I've just stayed inside in the air conditioning and sewed.

August Goals:
1. Finish the checkerboard borders and make backing for the Red Project and get everything ready to give to the quilter.
2. Start planning a special girl baby quilt for my niece's baby and kit it up for future off-site sewing.
3. Work on Clue #2 for Kevin's mystery.
4. Work on hand stitching WIGSP Piecing Group project.
5. Continue working on the collaboration project with friends if possible.
6. Look through UFOs and work on one of them; try to get it finished.
7. Keep up with bee blocks and BOMs.

If it stays hot, I should have a lot of indoor time for sewing in August. We'll see what I can get done and if I can make the stash report look any better. 

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

QOV Presentation

Remember the Snake QOV some friends and I made together? We finally had an opportunity to present it to our veteran.

Meet Don H. Don is a very young and energetic 86 year old who served in the Navy in pre-Castro Cuba as a gunnery photographer. Don is my sister-in-law's father-in-law.

Every summer my husband and I host a party for the extended family. Our house isn't big enough to accommodate everyone indoors, so we plan an outdoor gathering. This year it was the Third Annual Great Water Balloon and Splash Party. It was the perfect opportunity to present the QOV to Don and he was totally surprised.

My friends who made the quilt came to present the QOV to Don and stayed for barbecue and dessert. It worked out very well. The older folks were eating indoors when my friends arrived, so we presented Don his quilt and explained what it was all about and thanked him for his service. He commented that no one would have thought to thank a veteran for their service back in his day because everyone served in the military; it was expected that everyone served.

Since we did the presentation indoors, not everyone got to see, so Don and his wife Doris showed off the quilt outside to their kids and grandkids.

Don and Doris have been married for 62 years. I hope I'm as vibrant and energetic as they are when I'm their age!!!

Here are a few more pics from the party:

Don, his SIL Marilyn, and his two granddaughters, among others

Water balloons

playing on the Blobster

Triple Trouble: 4-1/2 year old cousins
(the one on the left is my GS)

6 of Don's great 8 grandkids plus my GS
(one family with two more boys was out of town)

A good time was had by all. It was a very fun party; Don was surprised, the timing for the presentation worked out well, the kids had a blast and wore themselves out, and we all enjoyed the afternoon.

Monday, July 29, 2019


Since I revised the border plan for my red Dresdens and Checkerboards project, I've been making more checkerboard blocks. The original border was three squares wide, but to bring it up to seven squares wide, consistent with the interior blocks, I'm making a bunch of 16-patch blocks. Here's the EQ rendering of the revised plan:

More strip sets:

More checkerboards in work:

And more of them pinned to my wall:

I'm making blocks in batches of four, one block for each border, with a few extra twosies and spare parts so I can adjust the length or the print placement as needed. For the short sides I need border strips that are 43 patches long. Then I'll count how many I need for the long sides. That'll be a lot of two inch patches! I much prefer using strip sets (strata) rather than individual cut pieces.

Maybe before too much longer I can have a finished top.

Monday link ups:
Small Quilts and Doll Quilts
Em's Scrapbag
Love Laugh Quilt