Friday, July 12, 2024

Odds & Ends

 Thursday was annual physical day for me.  That meant I had to be at the clinic at 8:30 am for a blood draw and then go back mid-afternoon for my actual appointment.  Do you find that when you set the alarm to get up even slightly earlier than usual that you then wake up WAY earlier?  I was wide awake at 5:30 am, but couldn't have my coffee or breakfast because my labs needed to be "fasting".  

We've been inundated with mosquitoes this month, probably because we've had so much rain.  Growing up in Minnesota I always heard the jokes about the mosquito being the state bird of Minnesota.  Well, it sure seems like lately our SD mosquitoes could earn that title too.  My husband was determined on Sunday to get the lawn mowed.  So even though it was hot outside he put on a jacket, long pants, golf gloves, and his hat - hoping to avoid too many bites.  He said he would have put a net over his face if he could have found one. 

I have 5 of the 12 blocks finished for Tranquility clue #2 mystery quilt.  There's no rush since we won't see clue #3 until August.  

And I have only 1 side left to hand stitch a binding down on a quilt I've been working on in the evenings while watching Shark Week programs.  

Thursday, July 11, 2024

Leaders and Enders

For many years I've worked with Leaders/Enders that eventually become a project as well as the main projects I'm working on at the time.  For me, it seems to keep my machine from eating fabric when starting a new seam.  

Usually I have trimmed triangles laying next to my machine, just waiting to become pinwheels or hourglass blocks.  But the last couple of weeks my leaders/enders have been string blocks pieced on either paper foundations or muslin foundations.  The smaller Bead block had paper which I removed right before adding the borders.  The 9.5" string blocks are pieced on 10" muslin squares, and the muslin stays in.  

The aqua strings were right next to the yellow bin, so I had pulled out lots of yellow strings too.  I hadn't been doing these larger string blocks as part of the Rainbow Scrap Challenge this year because I was using strings to make the rectangular sections for the Rainbow Connection quilt blocks.  Well, now that Rainbow Connections is finished, it seemed like a good time to start making these string blocks again.  They are really easy to do as leaders/enders.  I even found I had a little pile of muslin squares already cut so it was quick to begin them.

Do you follow Bonnie Hunter?  She always releases a special free pattern in July specifically geared toward leader and ender projects.  I did make one block - just to play a bit with it.   The strings and triangles are easier, but this could be a cute block too. 

So - what are the main projects going on this week?  The second clue was posted on Tuesday for the Fat Quarter Shop's free sew-along Star of Wonder.  It was 4 blocks that only took me a half hour to cut and sew.  The green and white blocks started with a 4-patch and then added strips in the Log Cabin fashion but only on 2 sides.  Easy peasy!!

And I worked on the units for the remaining 9 Tranquility blocks for the Bear Creek Quilts mystery.  The clues for this one are only posted once a month - just like our local Saturday Sampler. 

Wednesday, July 10, 2024

Mid-week already

Oops!  I knew I would end up deviating from the projects on my "design wall" this week, and already yesterday I did wander off.  

Last week I made this paper pieced star block - just to try out the pattern by Carol Doak.  It was laying on the end of the ironing board - taunting me.  Well, now it has borders sewn on and should make a nice table topper at about 24" square.  And it's in the hands of a long arm quilter, along with one UFO quilt, the strawberry bed runner, and the watermelon door hanger. 

And while I had that blue star fabric (leftover backing) out, I cut pieces for 2 more of the Split Back Star blocks.   These make a wonderful Quilt of Valor. 

Back to the "design wall" projects, I did sew 3 of the 12 blocks needed for this month's clue in the Tranquility Mystery quilt.  And I got my hair cut and nails done, so the day was not a loss.

Tuesday, July 9, 2024

Zippers, etc.

 One final Zipper block has been made, along with another Brighten block.

There are just enough of the Zipper blocks now to make a twin sized quilt.  I hope to get that all sewn together sometime this week, although it's a crazy busy week with appointments and things.  Maybe later today - after my haircut appointment - I'll get them layed out into rows.

I also counted the Brighten blocks and there are 31 of them now.  So I think by the end of this year of RSC colors there will be enough of them for a quilt top.

No sewing happened on Monday as we met our oldest daughter and husband for a day of golf.  It's her birthday tradition - to play golf.  It was a beautiful summer day, and we played a course I really like but hadn't been to for a few years.  We are fortunate that our kids live fairly close, 75 and 100 miles from us, but they are busy young families and we don't get to spend as much time with them as we would like.  So I really appreciate when we do. 

Monday, July 8, 2024

Design Wall Monday - July 8

 Happy birthday to the one who made me a mother!  Daughter #1.  She's a busy wife and hard working mom of 3 kids and 3 dogs.  

This morning we're meeting her and her husband to play golf to celebrate.  Happy birthday Jerilyn!

My design wall today is full of the parts and pieces for the 2nd month's clue for Tranquility mystery quilt (Bear Creek Quilting).  A few more narrow strips for the 9-patches still need to be cut. 

July's block is quite similar to last month's block, with the switch to the light gold in that upper corner.  There will be 12 of these blocks total, compared to the 4 last month.  We still have the lighter blue that we haven't used at all yet.  My blues are more teal than blue. 

Another item on my design wall is the Zipper quilt blocks.  I need just 1 more block to finish this quilt, and the colors will need a bit of rearranging before I sew them together.  I'm hoping this will be a completed flimsy before next Monday.  

Today I'm linking up with Design Wall Monday . . .

And Monday Musings . . .

Saturday, July 6, 2024

RSC24 - Week #27

A UFO is finally finished!  

Rainbow Connections was an RSC project made with string sections.  I had this one done to flimsy stage, but then decided to make it larger.  Now this quilt is twin bed sized and will be donated locally to Sleep In Heavenly Peace.  The binding on this one took forever to finish as I kept setting it aside. 

Night Vision in aqua - now that is a pretty color paired up with black and white.  

One chunk of aqua worked well to make a Kitty block, and for the Churn Dash block with the 16 patch centers.  

And one other aqua - this one quite dark - was just right for making another of each of those blocks.  Both sets of blocks are nearing the point of having enough for a quilt top, so hopefully by the end of this year I'll be assembling 2 more RSC quilts.

And finally for this week's RSC sewing - one Brighten block, and one Loose Goose (3-D).

The center of this block is aqua.  I just HAD to play along with Carol Doak's latest paper pieced block sew-along.  This is block #1, although I haven't decided whether or not to make them each month.  But if I do make more I will continue with vibrant colors along with that black print on the edges.

I'm out the door this morning to meet up with family at the Farmer's Market in Sioux Falls, and then possibly the zoo afterwards.  Both sons-in-law are coming here today to play golf.  We'll probably pass at some point on the highway as I head east and they come west. 

I'm linking up with the Rainbow Scrap Challenge today . . .

Friday, July 5, 2024

Batik Butterfly & random sewing

I have a UFO finish to share that was actually done in June.  But I forgot to share it at the time for some reason.  I present the Batik Butterfly . . . 

This is the 6" block version of the Sewcialites 2 sew-along.  I did blocks in all 3 sizes with different colorways for each.  This final one is all batiks and set into a butterfly design.  My plan for this quilt is to give it as a wedding gift for a fall wedding coming up.  

This zoomed in photo gives a more accurate depiction of the saturated colors and it shows off the pretty quilting much better.  The thread is a colorful variegated.  

We really didn't have any plans for the 4th of July this year, so of course I spent some time in my sewing room working on some very random blocks.  

This is another Carol Doak paper pieced block.  It was the block she released to celebrate reaching 14,000 members on her social media.  I just couldn't resist giving it a try, and since patriotic blocks can always be used in a QOV sampler that's what I did.   This is a definite winner.  I'll make this one again sometime.

The other random block I made yesterday is a Christmas block from Fat Quarter Shop's free Star of Wonder sew-along.  No plans to do the whole sew-along, but you never know.  I used fabrics left over from the Christmas tree skirt I made for myself this spring.  This first block is 16" finished, and the whole project is only 48" square - IF I make the rest of the weekly blocks.  No promises!  One 16" would make a nice pillow or a nice start of a table topper.