Saturday, April 30, 2022

Shooting Stars is a rainbow

Shooting Stars still needs the narrow background border added, but all of the colorful blocks are finished and the rows are all assembled.  I love it as is.  

Without the white border it's only 48" square, and the pattern only calls for a 2" border.  So I'm considering choosing one of those colors and adding a wider outer border just to make it larger.  If I leave it this size, then it would make a decent baby quilt.  This flimsy will hang in the closet with other finished tops while I decide how to finish it. 

The star block itself is one that I think needs to become part of my RSC repertoire of blocks.  This block is 8" square finished, so it's a good one for scrappy sewing because the largest piece needed is 2.5" x 4.5".   Plus - this one is easy to adjust to different sizes without crazy math. 

I made one PINK block just to celebrate the April color.  But before putting away the last of the pink scraps it seemed practical to kit up 4 more of them.  Yup - a little squirrel has distracted me.  And of course I couldn't resist starting to sew them.  

And I couldn't resist doing one more pink Twinkle Star too.  So I had 3 pink ones added to the stack for this month, and I can't wait to see what color comes next.  

I finished binding a big UFO quilt and a mini UFO quilt, but will show those another day.  Once that binding was done, I did pull out another UFO - Tulip Time - and began to add some sashing to the blocks.  That will be a time consuming project so it probably won't be finished in May. But I'm happy to be making some forward progress on it in between other projects.  Baby steps  on this one.  

And finally on Friday I chose another PIG (project in grocery sack) to cut out for May.  This one is small - one of the monthly pillow kits from 2021-22.  

Check out the RSC gang to see what else is happening in pink and find out what color has been selected for the month of May!

Thursday, April 28, 2022

Kids & progress on Shooting Stars

My grandkids crack me up most days, and then there are the days when they make me shudder just a bit too.  Granddaughter Olivia is 9 and she loves to read which makes me very happy.  My daughter won a copy of the Wizard of Oz in graphic novel form, and this second grader dove right in to read it - with her favorite reading pal.  Meet Ruby!

They have 2 dogs who love to snuggle, but Ruby the lizard loves to snuggle with the kids too. And she spends a lot of time with Olivia when she's reading.  The next photo my daughter sent me shows Ruby in her favorite perch . . .

The kids all know that the rule is if grandma (ME) is in the house, then Ruby has to stay in her terrarium because I just can't handle being anywhere near reptiles.  But I'm glad the kids all find her so interesting and aren't big scaredy cats like me! 

As for this week's quilting project, there has been lots of progress.  There are 6 rows in the Shooting Stars quilt, each with 3 star blocks and 3 of the diagonal blocks.  I have the first 4 rows all assembled.  It's hanging (sideways) in the closet waiting for the next 2 rows.

The diagonal blocks are done for both rows.  This is a rainbow project, with the colors ranging from warm to cool.  The aqua, blue, and purple blocks will complete this rainbow.

And the star blocks are partially done - laying on the design board in the correct order.  I'm very optimistic that I'll have this quilt top DONE by the weekend. 

All of the colored pieces were cut from a jelly roll.  And I must admit that since starting this project it has me thinking about other blocks that are jelly roll friendly.  Oh no - I feel another distraction waving at me!  And yes, there are several jelly rolls just living in my stash waiting for the perfect project.  

Wednesday, April 27, 2022

Favorite quilts

 Do you have favorites among the quilts you've made - and kept - over the years?  I really enjoy decorating with quilts around my house.  And right now, some of my very favorites are on display.

My mother's treadle sewing machine sits in my living room, and it's a perfect spot for small seasonal displays.  I've left my Easter bunny table topper there for now - because it's so cheerful and cute.  The flowers are silk, and the bunny statue is wooden.  The book is another family treasure.  It's a soft leather-covered poetry book that belonged to my great-grandmother.  

The cover is actually embossed and dyed with a flower.  It's pretty fragile anymore, but I've had it displayed somewhere in my house on a little pedestal most of my adult life.  It makes me smile every time I see it. 

Another favorite quilt is this round table topper that I made several years ago.  It was paper pieced in rings.  Then each ring was hand appliqued to the next one.  I quilted it using a decorative stitch on my sewing machine.  It fits perfectly on my dining room table when the extension leaves are not in.

One more favorite is this flip flop wall hanging.  It hangs in our guest bathroom, which has a beach-y theme.  There are no windows in that bathroom so I haven't had to worry about it fading.  But the light isn't the best for photography.  And this quilt is actually what made me think about favorites and decorating with quilts.  My pinochle group met at my house on Monday night, and one of the gals prompted this whole conversation.

Do you have favorite quilts that you display and use?

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

To Do Tuesday

Yesterday I didn't spend much time sewing, but I did run lots of errands.  Got my 2nd Covid booster and I'm happy to say other than a sore arm I feel fine today.  I had a headache really early this morning but that has gone away.  Maybe sleeping in today was the cure!

I did get 2 blocks made for Quilts of Valor yesterday, and also finished the green Shooting Stars block that I was working on Sunday.  

My main goal today - is to wait for a plumber to show up to work on the leaking dishwasher connection.  That means I will stay upstairs and work on binding, because I don't always hear the doorbell from my basement sewing room.

Monday, April 25, 2022

Design Wall Monday - Shooting Stars

 The first 3 rows of Shooting Stars are made, and I have a good start on the fourth row.

I mentioned that these blocks have an interesting assembly technique.  Looking at the photo on the pattern, I assumed the star block was made with a 4-patch and flying geese.  But then I was confused because the fabric included with the pattern had been a jelly roll.  How was that going to work?

I'm happy to report that the jelly roll works perfectly - because there are NO flying geese and NO 4-patches in this block.  

This block was made using squares and half square triangles - plus a stitch and flip corner on that rectangle.  Very slick process!!

And the green diagonal section in the other block also had a unique process - 2 background pieces sewn on the side of the strip, then squared up on-point.  This is turning into a fun project, and possibly one I will repeat another time with scraps or strips.

It's Monday, so what happening on your design wall?

Sunday, April 24, 2022

This n that . . .

Saturday morning turned into a cleaning project I hadn't anticipated.   The benefit of walking around barefoot is you find the wet spots when there is a leak under the kitchen sink.  The rug was damp, and that led to unloading everything from under the sink.  We've run water in the sink to try to find the problem but didn't figure it out yet.  My guess it's either the connection to the dishwasher or to that blue filtration system.  Either way we had a mess to clean up, and a plumber to call on Monday morning. Why do these things always happen on weekends or holidays?  

Saturday afternoon I escaped the kitchen mess, and enjoyed some time with friends attending a fun program put on by a couple of local ladies.  "If Quilts Could Talk" is a wonderful combination of an antique quilt trunk show, historical quilting stories, and humor.  I've seen their program several times over the years, but this was their "farewell" event as they plan to retire.  I took this photo last October at our guild quilt show.  They've kept a log of presentations and have given 104 presentations over the past 23 years.  Saturday's show was #105.

Ruby and Louise are both so knowledgeable about antique quilts, old fabrics, quilt restoration, and are both very willing to share their expertise.  Plus - they are a couple of ladies who love to have fun!

This was a stormy weekend for many, but those thunderstorms and tornadoes (and winter storms in the western part of our state) just keep missing us.  I'm OK with no tornadoes!!  However we got the wind to dry us out even more, but no much needed rain.  Our drought continues.  So my husband spent part of Saturday morning getting our sprinkler system going for the season.  We have our own well for that so we don't have to pay for city water, but try to be careful about still following the watering restrictions here.  The back yard is more dirt than grass this spring.  He has talked to a landscape guy about possibly bringing in some new dirt for this area and reseeding.  We've tried for 2 years to get new grass going here with no luck.  I've suggested sod, but was dismissed by the gardener (the husband).

A bit of sewing later in the day was a good distraction from the kitchen too, and I managed to make a little progress on Shooting Stars.  There are 2 blocks made with each jelly roll strip - the star and the diagonal one.  The completed rows are now hanging in the closet - horizontal rows 1 and 2 are done.  And the first 2 blocks of row 3 are made too.  Since I had this all kitted up it was very quick to just dive in and sew.  That was good therapy!  Happy colors again - yay!!

These are layed out in kind of a rainbow effect, starting with the warm colors (pink, red, orange, yellow) at the top and gradually moving into the cool colors (green, blue, purple) near the bottom.  
The technique for making both blocks kind of surprised me.  They didn't go together like I figured they would by just looking at the picture on the pattern.  The process is actually quite easy.  I'll try to take some pictures as I work on the next sets of blocks. 

And returning to that water issue, I'm going to have to run that dishwasher today because it was nearly full.  I guess if it is the cause of the leak, we'll find out soon enough.  And if not, then that will narrow things down to everything else under there.  

Saturday, April 23, 2022

A whole rainbow of colors

 This was a week of mostly focus on assembling some tops, and getting ready to bind some projects.  It was also a good week to cut all the pieces for a brand new project.

One of the tops I finished earlier in the week is a 44" square baby quilt made from all pink Snail's Trail blocks.  This was a very quick project, and all of the fabrics were pulled from the stash or the scraps bin.  It will hang in the closet for awhile until I need it.  

Part of my Thursday afternoon (following a morning of work tasks on a tight deadline) was spent cutting all the pieces for a new project.  I like "kitting up" a project so that when I'm ready to begin working on it I can dive right in.  That doesn't always happen, but it's a good process for me. 

Shooting Stars was from one of the Sew Sampler boxes from Fat Quarter Shop.  The pattern and half a jelly roll came in the box.  The jelly roll is Love Lily (April Rosenthal) line by Moda.  I purchased the white background locally, and then the whole thing was set aside.  The fabric and pattern had been just sitting on top of the big dresser in my sewing room - waiting it's turn.  Because it really has a spring vibe to it, I decided it's time has come.

Usually I do all of my cutting at the station set up in my sewing room.  But it was chilly downstairs on Thursday, so I brought everything I needed up to the kitchen.  The counter is the same height as my cutting station and there is good lighting.  Plus I could enjoy the RARE sunshine coming in the windows while I worked.

All of the parts are now cut and labeled, layed out neatly on my big design board, and ready to sew.  I think this could be an awesome rainbow project for this weekend.  And since I've caught up with most of my RSC blocks in pink, and nearly finished a couple of UFOs I've been working on . . . this seems like a perfect reward.  

Check out the RSC projects shared by many . . .

Friday, April 22, 2022

Blue and white - Riley Blake Design block challenge

Anyone else having problems with Bloglovin' lately?  I use it often on my iPad or phone to read a lot of content, but in the past couple of weeks it just doesn't want to load.  Or I get error messages when trying to leave a comment.  I hope they get their problems solved.  At least when posting on my blog and using my laptop, it has worked OK.  

A bit of blue and white provided a change from pink, pink, pink.  This is block #13 of the Riley Blake Design block challenge, Double Cross by Sue Daley.  I believe that means there will be 3 final blocks introduced in April.  

I'm really looking forward to seeing the final layout plan for the 16 blocks. Will it be unique or very traditional?  Seeing the color schemes online that people have chosen is quite inspirational.  I'm not terribly bold when it comes to color choices, with my personal tastes leaning toward the bright and happy - except when I'm working on Kim Diehl types of projects.

Not the best photo, but at least I have a good idea of the variety of blues I've used so far.  And speaking of Kim Diehl projects . . . 

Today I'm hoping to finish quilting the Midnight (Kim Diehl) miniature quilt.  I'm using a decorative stitch to outline the stars in this one.  The binding is ready to attach as soon as I finish the quilting, and then I'll have another UFO checked off my list.  

Thursday, April 21, 2022

Pink Snail's Trail

 Another baby quilt top is hanging in the closet, waiting for quilting.  Most likely this one will end up being a donation quilt.  Or possibly a future baby gift.  

Snail's Trail is about 44" square, and made entirely from the stash.  About a week ago I saw 3 variations of this block online - a totally scrappy version, a blue version, and a blue plaid one.  Seeing how pretty those quilts turned out inspired me to make some of these blocks too.  

One block turned into 9, all pink.  And the 9 blocks seemed like an excellent size for a baby quilt.  That border is leftover from a backing on a previous quilt.  In all honesty - that pink stash drawer is still packed and difficult to close.  

Wednesday, April 20, 2022

Saturday Sampler - 6 blocks

This month's Saturday Sampler blocks are complete, and that means we're halfway through this Sampler program.  It's called Midnight Stars.     

They are really looking good together now that the pieced sashing is developing that secondary design.  The grey will become the outer border, and the red will pop into that border as well.  

Block #6 in the batiks and pale grey . . . 

And block #6 in the dark background with bright prints . . .

I have no idea yet just how these will go together, but there will be enough of these extra blocks for 2 quilts this year.  Most likely these will become donation quilts.  

Tuesday, April 19, 2022

Barn Silo flimsy

 I headed down to my sewing room yesterday morning after catching up with my online students.  There was plenty of time to play while waiting on a project proposal that one of the engineers wanted me to review and edit.  Uninterrupted time basically until about 2:30 when the proposal document finally showed up in my email - Yay!!  

Barn Silo was one of the main goals I set for this week.  It is now a flimsy, and ready to put into the hands of someone else to quilt.  This is a wall hanging and is about 51" square.  

Having someone professionally quilt several projects can get quite expensive.  But I decided this winter that the extra money I earned by teaching online again (reluctantly) this semester would go toward long arm quilting several UFO projects. That put a positive spin on the extra time involved in teaching again after I thought I was retired from that job.  

Monday, April 18, 2022

Design Wall Monday - April 18

My design wall this morning is full of things ready for the next steps.  

All 9 of the pink Snail's Trail blocks are made and ready to assemble into a baby quilt.  Since they are 12" finished blocks, that will make this only 36" square which is just a bit smaller than I would like for a baby quilt.  But I have lots of that center pink, so my plan is to add a border.  Maybe about 4" wide would give this a good finished size.  

Another plan for this week involves this month's Saturday Sampler.  The Christmas version of the 6th block is made, but it still needs it's pieced sashing.  And I need to make the other 2 color versions of this block.  This was another easy one to do. 

The final barn for Barn Silo is brown.  With all 4 barn blocks made, I've begun working on the sashing, which involves small 9-patches as cornerstones, and sashing made with 3 narrow strips each.  Half of the 9-patches are done and all of the remaining pieces are cut so I can just focus on sewing it all together this week.  

These 3 projects are my main goals for this week, but there is also some binding to work on if I end up with some time. 

Linking up with Design Wall Monday: 

Saturday, April 16, 2022

A third week of pink fun

 No sewing will happen today, because we're celebrating April birthdays today.  The plan is sending grandpa and the 2 sons-in-law to Great Shots to use their gift cards.  And the daughters and I will hang out with the kids, relax, and prep the food.  We're skipping the traditional Easter dinner, and grilling burgers and brats.  And using paper plates!  Lots of picnic-style sides and some birthday treats will round it out.  Just a good day spent together. 

More pink fun was had this week . . .

This Twinkle Star block happened.  I love these blocks so much, and just keep making them because they're fun to make and so cute.  I guess I should pull out the project box and count the blocks to see if I'm close to having enough for a quilt. 

I blame the online quilting communities for this squirrel, but it's a good side track I think.  I saw Snail's Trail blocks on a couple of blogs this past week or so - ranging from RSC colors to blue plaid.  And I just couldn't resist making one Snail's Trail block last Saturday morning before going to Sew Vintage.  I began thinking since the pink stash drawer is nearly too full to close that this would be a good project for an all pink baby quilt made of Snail's Trail blocks.  And there was enough of this pink print to make another little heart block. 

And then during this past week, this happened . . . with more cut out and ready to sew.  

Two more were sewn from those little block kits on Wednesday.  There might NOT be a little heart block to go with each one however, but we'll see.  

And on Thursday, I finished 2 more Snail's Trail blocks. 

I think 9 of these 12" blocks would make a nice baby quilt if I add a border.  There is still plenty of pink in that drawer, and these blocks haven't made much of a dent.  So maybe there will be more than 9 blocks eventually.  

I looked back on my blog and in 2014 I made Snail's Trail blocks for RSC.  Actually I used the Eleanor Burns pattern with a solid center that she called Pig Tail.  That quilt was so pretty in all kinds of bright fun fabrics, and it was given away as a wedding gift that next summer. 

A couple of the Friendship Square blocks were also made.  I'm thinking I will divide these up into 2 quilts - one with more of a "boy" feel to it, and the other for a girl.  These should make very nice donation quilts.  

And there was even a pink barn block added to the Barn Silo project.  

What else happened in the Rainbow Scrap world this week?

Friday, April 15, 2022

Blue Hexies is complete

I finished binding the Blue Hexie wall hanging.  Blue Hexie was a slowly evolving project, a "design as you go" - over a period of almost 7 years.  

It all began on a guild shop hop bus trip to the Black Hills in the fall of 2015.  I hand stitched every one of these little hexies on the bus, to give me something to do while traveling.  I used a blue batik charm pack, cut into 2.5" squares and used the English Paper Piecing technique.  Then those hexies sat in a drawer in this recycled lunch meat container until this winter. 

I saw a pillow online made using blue hexies stitched into flower shapes, and it was one of those lightbulb moments.  So . . . they came along with me in the car to and from Brookings all winter for Jackrabbit basketball games.  First I hand stitched them into the flower shapes, and then hand appliqued them onto 6" a variety neutral batik squares.   Sixteen of these blocks seemed like a good size.

But it was too big for a pillow, so I decided it would become a wall hanging instead.  Or a table topper possibly.  It needed at least one border, maybe 2 borders.

This set of blue batik 2.5" strips kept calling to me, and eventually became a dark inner border, and then a piano key border.  I even mitered the corners.  There were plenty of strips left to do the binding.  And the remainder of these blue strips are now living in the batik stash. 

The quilting is lovely, with a blue variegated thread.  This photo actually captured the colors very accurately as the neutrals have a more grey hue rather than creamy like that first photo.  There are still some blue hexies left, and maybe in another 7 years I'll have made something else to use them up. 

Now I have more binding to do.  On Tuesday I picked up this quilt from the long armer.  I absolutely LOVE the variegated thread she chose, and the design she used.  Great job!

This is a Quilt of Valor using the Beads (or Chandelier) pattern.  I think a scrappy QOV version may be in my future too.  Or possibly as another option for a block drive for our group.