Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Accidental Landscapes

The picture needs cropped, I know, but it took me long enough to find it, let alone edit it. :) Anyway, last year I did this desert scene, thanks to Karen Eckmeier and her book Accidental Landscapes. Also thanks to the now closed 3 Dudes Quilt Shop for the fabrics. (Ok, so it was a year after I got the fabrics before I made the landscape...)

I decided to teach an accidental landscape lesson to our quilt group, Cerro Gordo Quilters, so I needed to make another, and here is the mountain scene that resulted.

In order to have a work in process, I started this beach one for our lesson night. 
It's finished now. I didn't realize this photo was so dark until just now...

Last week was the Church of the Brethren Annual Conference. Congregations are asked to send in quilt blocks and the wall hanging tops are put together prior to conference and hand quilted AT conference. Then they are auctioned off with the proceeds going to hunger relief. These are the 5 lovely wall hangings for 2019.
I love the sunblock in this one--from Papago Buttes Church of the Brethren in Scottsdale, AZ. 

I made the purple violets for our congregation in Cerro Gordo, IL. I make the same one every year.
I really like the star in the upper left corner, but I forget which congregation it is from. 
The tulip in the upper left corner of this green one is gorgeous. Again, I forget where it is from. 
And there's an accidental landscape in this wall hanging!
Two of these were purchased and donated back twice--that means they were sold 3 times. Almost all of them brought good prices and over $7400 was raised.
Many, many congregations did not send a block--this needs to be promoted more, and I'll be doing that in Illinois for 2020!

Monday, June 24, 2019

Busy Spring

We've been busy--really we have! A 4th birthday party...

Porchfest in St. Louis, at which our son-in-law Todd played & sang...

Harper's first violin concert...

I did finish this Santa that I started 10+ years ago with that gridded interfacing. I didn't like it then and I like it less now, but Santa's done.
Band concerts--that's Connor in the middle before the Middle School concert started...

Hailey on the far right in her elementary school concert...

making zipper pillow covers with Hailey...

and one for Connor too...
keeping the granddaughters...

watching dance recital pieces at lessons...

helping with strawberry festival at church...

Yum!! great strawberry pies!

and our county fair--I'm treasurer so live there during the fair.
Getting a little time to sew now. Working on some "accidental landscapes," based on the book by Karen Eckmeier. There should have been a picture on my phone but I'm not finding it. Another post, I guess...

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Log Cabin Finish

I really have been working of a bunch of stuff but sometimes real life takes priority.
We spent Easter at daughter Natalie's. Daughter Sarah and family came too so we had all 5 grandkids with us (and their parents too). This is Easter morning.

I made jewelry travel bags for the older 2 granddaughters since they both had their ears pierced several months ago. 

I made a block for our congregation for our Church of the Brethren Annual Conference this summer.
Several wall hanging tops will be piece from donated blocks prior to conference and hand quilted at conference. They will be auctioned off at the end of the conference. 

My big finish this month is my log cabin quilt--the one for which my aunt Harriette and cousin Lynette and I make all the blocks 4 about 4 1/2 years ago. I've had it put together for a long time, even cut out the appliques with my Go! Baby after I decided I wanted to applique in the light parts, but couldn't get motivated to finish until I went to the International Quilt Fest near Chicago.
Here's the center with appliques ironed on.

Whole thing on my design wall (which is a flannel sheet tacked to the wall at the top). 

AND... quilted! I used my quilting to tack down the appliques so I didn't have to stitch around each flower, leave, stem... 

Since I had 2 extra blocks, one became my label. I'm not sure why the picture decided to turn upside down... 

Our quilt group has to say good-bye to one of our members who is moving away from us so we got a couple pictures of most of our bunch. 

Lastly I made a small wall hanging to donate to Parables Community, one of our new congregations in Lombard, IL. They have a fundraiser each year (3rd anniversary this time) and this is my 2nd year making something for them. This is hand quilted with a long stitch and I added beads to the wavy blue line for some bling. 

Guess I could have cropped some of these photos, but you get the idea anyway...

Monday, March 25, 2019

All About Strings (and Scraps)

It's my day for the All About Strings blog hop, hosted by Carla of Creatin' in the Sticks! When she published that this hop was happening, I jumped on it because I really needed to get through some of my scraps.

When I get to the place that my fabric is not enough to put back on the shelf, I cut those scraps into strips and/or squares of various sizes; squares from 5" down to 2", strips from 2 1/2" down to 1 1/2" and then the strings are saved as well. (I won't tell you about the basket of scraps waiting to be cut...) I have shoe-box size crates these all go in, and let me tell you, I am getting quite a stack of them. When I read that Pat Sloan only allows 2 crates to fill up before she does something with them, I thought I'd better get cracking!

Our quilt club, the Cerro Gordo Quilters, has an annual retreat at Threads of Time in Danville, IL, and I had decided early on that I was going to only take my scraps--my strings and my 5" blocks--to make something, anything, with them. Carla's hop helped me focus more on strings, but the 5" blocks were handy too.

At first I thought I'd just make a bunch of squares using strings for a table runner, but then I thought some quarter square triangle blocks made from 5" squares would look nice too, so I made enough to alternate them on a table runner. My string blocks were large enough to accommodate the size of the 4 quarter square triangles in a block, and I forget what size that was now--maybe 7 1/2"??

Then I decided I would piece the back with strings too. Man, does that take a long time!
Here is a peek from one side. 

More of a peek...

And the whole thing:

I quilted it using my walking foot and those "organic waves"--easy peasy.

The binding is leftover 2 1/2" strings that I pieced together. I love it--either side could be used for the runner.

Then I thought it would be fun to make a star block with a string-pieced center. I had brought some extra background fabric since I wasn't sure I had enough light colored 5" pieces, and I did have to use some of it. I didn't use a pattern, just figured out what I needed to do. The center is an 8 1/2" square, and the outer squares are 4 1/2". 

I made 4 at retreat and have more half square triangles ready to go, but I don't know if I want a quilt or what out of these, so I have stopped for now.

The other day, I decided it would be fun to make a zipper bag out of my strings, so I opened up a box again (I have 3 boxes of strings), and pulled out stuff until I put together these 2 pieces:

Then I used mostly bigger scraps (ones in that basket to be cut) for the lining pieces:

Here is my bag, front and back:

and inside (It's about 14 x 17," a nice size for caring sewing stuff). Again, no pattern, just putting together until I had a size I liked.

Sew, there are my projects. I still have more strings than I know what to do with, and a ton more 5" squares, not to mention the smaller stuff. I think it grew while I was working with it--I didn't make a dent. So, I believe there will be more stringy/scrappy projects in my future!

Thanks, Carla, for hosting this amazing hop!

Here are today's other hoppers with their wonderful projects:

Tuesday, March 26th

Just Sew Quilter  (You are here!)

Sunday, March 3, 2019

Quilt Retreat

Five of us made it to our annual quilt retreat at Threads of Time in Danville, IL, down from our original 10. We have been having a great time, as usual. We really enjoy coming here, with the quilt shop connected to the retreat center and the ability to roam in and out when the shop is open. Best of all is the chance to be together and have fun!
Below is Nanette on the left, and I am on the right.

Here's Rosie, working on a quilt for her grandson's high school graduation gift.

Sharon's working on some applique for placemats.

Nanette's top-stitching the edge of a table runner.

Becky's fighting her way through the directions of the Tool Tote.

I'm working on strings for Carla's hop later this month--oh, oh, maybe you shouldn't see this--pretend you didn't--it's not quite finished though. And I'm working on another string project too...

I brought only my assorted strips and 5" squares that I have cut from scraps to try to use up--ha, ha, ha!!--I could sew for a week or 2 to get them used up, I'm thinking at this point. That's not even dealing with other squares I have that are different sizes... Maybe I'll make a dent??? One can only hope.

Sunday, February 3, 2019

Projects with Chris

Chris and I did a 5 shop hop a few days ago, and she found fabric she wanted to use for a table runner to match her Fiesta-ware dishes. Chris hasn't sewn for years (although she used to) and asked me to show her how to do the "10 Minute" table runner and coasters. The print was 108" wide backing fabric so we just got 1/3 yd. Made use of all but a short 5" strip.

Here are her finished products: 

She also bought fabric for 2 pillow cases which she made under my tutelage.
Here's one of them. Forgot to get pics of both when finished. 

On one of our daily walks, we saw this heron sunning itself--barking dogs, passers-by, and kids didn't phase it. 

This is our view from the bridge on our walks: 

End of table runner story: we went back to the shop yesterday where Chris got the table runner fabrics (A Quilter's Oasis in Mesa--lovely shop!) and she bought more of both fabrics to make some more things after she gets home to MO. She says she is not going to become addicted... I'm taking bets.