Sunday, January 16, 2022

Monday Meanderings 1 - 17 - 2022

It was a great week when I look at my goals.  I thought I had put too much on the goals list last week but surprise, surprise I pretty much finished everything by Friday.  Here's a refresher on what was planned for last week.

1/10/2022

Start first round of SAHRR 

Work on Sail boat quilt (January UFO)

Make RSC blocks, mystery block You can see them here

Make backing for Happy Blocks It's already loaded on Ruthie

Make more ombre blocks

Add Go dies to online list 


And, with such a successful last week I'm going to push myself this week.  


1/17/22

Do 2nd round of SAHRR

Quilt and bind my Happy Block quilt top

Finish Sailboat top (January UFO) 

Make more ombre blocks 

Keep making Happy Blocks, Twirl blocks, and Spider blocks 


I decided I was going to try using two of my unused Accuquilt dies today.  First up is a half hexagon.  Unfortunately there aren't a lot of things you can do with that die without some other ones.  But I do like this Twirl quilt.

Picture from Accuquilt.com 

Here's what I've gotten done so far. It took me several tries before I got the triangles made correctly. If you look carefully there are three triangles in the picture below.  I grabbed a bunch of fat quarters of floral prints and the beige.  I have enough cut out to make one of the "blocks"  that makes a twirl. See the light twirls above? I may go ahead and try to finish a smaller quilt with these florals and beige. 

Side note -- you know how you can't remember what you had for breakfast but you can remember where you got a piece of fabric 30 years ago? The large floral print came from a quilt shop in Los Angeles that I "think" was owned by Mary Ellen Hopkins. I forget why I had gone to LA, probably to see my dad, but I spent a bit of time checking out a couple quilt stores while I was there. For some reason I remember this fabric and that store.  (No name for the store -- memory is a weird thing!) 

Next up is the beginning of a block using the Spider web die. You can see the design on the packaging here. Here's 1/4th of the block. I think this will be a great one to use smaller hunks of fabric.  Except I suppose I'll have to have enough to make all 4 quarters.  I've got more of the white fabric but I'm not sure about the red batik.  

Time will tell how I do on these new blocks. Now it's on to my December statistics. First up - I can tell you it was a very good year for me for fabric usage. 2021 ended with me using more fabric than bringing in. 

2021

Fabric In Month

Fabric In Year

Fabric Out 

Month

Fabric Out Year

Total In or Out Year

 

 

Dec

16.75.00

126.0

13.250

146.625

20.625

 

 

Year

Fabric In 

Fabric Out Year

Total In or Out Year

2010

  65.000

 70.250

  13.000

2011

186.500

 72.000

114.500

2012

113.545

108.970

    4.575

2013

100.710

103.015

    2.305

2014

108.250

  79.750

  28.500

2015

  66.205

  77.150

  10.945 

2016

  83.375

 55.375

  28.000

2017

118.625

108.125

  10.500

2018

85.375

94.250 

8.875

2019

55.830

66.625

10.705

2020

95.750

95.625

0.125

 2021

126.000

146.625

20.625

 

 

 













Because I had purchased 2 wide backs and was given a lot of fat quarters for Christmas I thought I might have bought more than I used.  Well, no, that didn't happen.  It was a great year for me for fabric usage. Unfortunately, Over the last 12 years I've brought in  119 yards more than I used. I'm going to need to get way more productive (or give away some large hunks of fabric) to ever use more fabric than I bring in since when I started keeping stats. 


True confession time though: On January 2nd I purchased 9 yards of solid fabrics from JoAnns. The fabric was on sale and I could take an additional 25% off if I ordered online and picked it up at the store. Well, yes I will take advantage of that great sale. I'm pretty sure I've already put some of it to use. But I only count fabric used after the item is finished. 


On to a sad occasion for me. No, not really drastic but I was trying so hard.  Do you use a Kindle or the Kindle app on your tablet or phone?  I love mine.  And on January 4th here's what my unbroken streak of reading on my Kindle looked like.


I was being so careful to read on my Kindle trying to get a full year of days in a row. Alas, it didn't happen. Wait, actually it did happen. I just didn't check it on the Jan 14th, the 365th day.  Yesterday (the 15th) I was trying to finish a "real" book for book club and make progress on a book that was only available on Overdrive.  Some how I didn't open up the Kindle app and read the book on it. Sniff!  Sniff!  So I did succeed!  Hum, I wonder if I can get to 2 years reading every day? That weeks-in-a-row is almost 3 and a half years.  Yep, I am a serious reader.  Almost every night I spend at least 30 minutes reading, sometimes a lot more.   


On that happy note it's time to list the linky parties that you can visit and see what quilters across the world are working on. 

To Do Tuesday

I'll be linking up the other two once they go live. Hope you enjoy some surfing. 


Happy Quilting! Bonnie












Friday, January 14, 2022

Starts and Finishes

Here are two starts and one finish for you to enjoy.  First up the starts. 

For the Rainbow Scrap Challenge 2022 I chose Whirl pattern.  It's a 9" finished block.  I specifically chose a 9" block so that I could use my Accuquilt Go 9" Cube and Go Companion Set Angles.  I'm continuing to try to use my Go dies as often as possible this year.  Over the last 2 years I've gone a little crazy buying dies (mostly on sale) so I really need to use them.  I can't decide whether to make only this block or make several different pinwheel style blocks.  What do you think?  

If one is good how about 2 and a sew along block? 

I want to make 3 RSC blocks each month so I would have 30 blocks after 10 months of colors.  We'll see if I actually succeed. The top block is the first block in Sherri McConnell's Quilting Life Quilt Block of the Month. You can read all about it, find the fabric requirements and the first block here. My friend Sharon has been doing these yearly sew alongs for awhile.  I decided to join her this year. I hope she pushes me to keep up. 

Next up is one of my finishes from December.  


Hum, for some reason this didn't come out as great as I thought it did.  I fell in love with this fabric with little bunnies wearing hats and holding peppermints. Truth be told, I bought it from Thousands of Bolts, Just One Nut probably in 2018 or so.  It was on sale for maybe $5.00/yard.  I let it simmer in my stash for a while but finally chose a pattern from one of Ursula Reikes books and made it up. It sat for a while  until I decided it was time to buy backing fabric and get it finished.  I originally planned to give it away but I like it way too much to send it out into the world.  It will be donated eventually but I'm enjoying it now.  


Here's an up close of the backing.  I can't find any info on the quilting design.  I know it is fairly new to me but I haven't been able to find it at any of the regular places I purchase designs from.  Weird. I do know I used a white So Fine thread from Superior Threads for the top and bobbin.  Unfortunately, I have not been recording all that information in my quilting book so I'm not sure the exact color number or the name of the design. It's a small quilt, maybe 35" square. (When I next go down to the studio I'll check the design name and the company name.) Click on the pic of the backing to see the design better. In fact, all the pics should enlarge if you click on them.


Last picture -- Pat holding the quilt with snow in the foreground. (That snow is left over from Jan 3.) 


I hope you will spend some time with these linky parties: 

Midweek Makers

Needle and Thread Thursday

Can I Get a Whoop, Whoop?

Finished or Not Friday

Beauties Pageant 

Scrap Happy Saturday

That's it for this Friday evening.  Grab a cup of your favorite beverage and check out what people are making across the Internet. 

Happy Quilting All! Bonnie 





Wednesday, January 12, 2022

SAHRR

Have you heard of SAHRR?  In English it's Stay At Home Round Robin.  I've done several different Round Robins over the years.  Some of my very favorite quilts are the results of mailing round robins.  I participated in some through Prodigy in the late 80s and early 90s.  You can see one of them here. That one was international.  

When I decided to play along I found this block folded in a box.   


I'm pretty sure I made it in a class a good 20 years ago.  But I can't remember who taught it. I also found some of the original fabric saved with the block and hopefully I'll find other fabric in my stash that goes with it.  

If you want to participate Gail of Quilting Gail is sponsoring it. 

Starting next week, every week for 6 weeks we'll be given the style for the border to be added that week. I'm generally slow at getting a top finished but I'm hoping this will lead me to a fantastic finished quilt in a fairly short time.  My block is 15" or so -- I'll probably have a fairly big quilt.  I do know I'd like it to be vertical so no doubt I'll be adding some borders to only two sides.  

Are you ready to join in?  Read what Gail has to say about it and join us for a fun time.  Wouldn't it be great to make an orphan block into a finished top in six weeks?  

I'm linking up with Gail's linky party to show off my center block. Go take a look and join us! 

Happy Quilting All!  Bonnie 

  

Sunday, January 9, 2022

Monday Meanderings 1 - 10 - 2022

Are you staying safe these days?  We still mask up when we go out and are in the process of upgrading our mask type.  We have chosen not to go out as much but we still go a few places.  On the other hand I won't be attending quilt guild this month.  Our local hospitals are filling up and even though I'm fully vaccinated I sure don't want to add to their load. On the other hand staying home gives me a lot of time to quilt and read, two of my favorite things.   Now, on to my goals.

Last week:

1/3/2022

Work on January's UFO -- Here's what I've got so far. I need to finish 4 snowball blocks, seam the light houses, and trim some of the excess fabric off.  Then I'll decide where the lighthouses will be -- top or bottom. And what will go with them. 

Make more ombre blocks -- I made a few but have quite a few more to make. It's going to be a queen size quilt rather than the lap quilt I had originally planned. 

Start first round of SAHRR — oops doesn’t start until 1/10 but I have picked out my center block. 

Cut out Looking Glass quilt -- Done! And ready to sew 

Update Accuquilt Go Items online  Making progress, have the list need to add it online. 


This week:


1/10/2022

Start first round of SAHRR 

Work on Sail boat quilt (January UFO)

Make RSC blocks and mystery block 

Make backing for Happy Blocks

Make more ombre blocks

Add Go dies to online list 


It's a longer list than I usually come up with.  Hopefully I'll get all of them either done or move the projects ahead. 


Here are a couple of things I finished that weren't on my To Do List. 

These blocks were hanging around with some other sizes of Happy Blocks I have. All I did was sew them into rows and then sewed the rows together.  The most happy part of these blocks is I think I have a hunk of red fabric that I can use as a backing. Making the backing has been added to this week's list. Then I see some quilting in the coming weeks. 

These blocks go to Joan, a member of FCQ E-quilters.  She only asked for a few... I added a few more than she asked but I didn't go wild. 

Take a look at this picture -- it shows all the spools and cones I used up this year -- 21. The big purple cones are Mettler Silk Finish Cotton -- 2000 yard cones. I've done a lot of piecing in 2021! Which explains why there aren't as many smaller spools pictured. 


Here are the year's thread usage since I first started keeping track of my spools.  
   

Year

Spools Used Up

2021

21

2020

16

2019

21

2018

12

2017

30

2016

7

2015

27

2014

30

2013

17

2012

22

That's it for today. Take a look at these linky parties -- there are all sorts of blogs you can look at and get inspiration! 


Happy Quilting All!  Bonnie 












Friday, January 7, 2022

Last Quilt of 2021

Let me explain.  This is the last quilt I finished in 2021.  But I do have another finish from December to show sometime soon.  You might have seen the sneak peek here of this quilt. 

The blocks are paper pieced from Sew Yourself a Merry Little Christmas by Mary Hertel. Should I admit I started the blocks, um, about 3 years ago? Last fall I finally finished the blocks and started planning sashing and borders.  I purchased some bright blue to sash the blocks but I was trying to use stash for the rest. This silver and black is actually snowflakes. I sent off pictures to two of my trusted quilting buddies.  Nope, this didn't get unanimous rave reviews. To me the bright blue stuck out too much and the gray was too bright. 

I tried again. My goal was to bring the quilt to about 40" square.  But using just the grey didn't work.  I tried making the grey smaller (2.5") and adding a slightly larger  black border. Much better.  


 Next up was quilting. An overall computerized design was vetoed.  And, I agreed. So the plan evolved that I would pin baste it and stitch in the ditch. Luckily I didn't get rid of my curved pins! 


Next up quilting on my Bernina.  (I did most of the table runners the same way so I felt fairly confident it would turn out ok.) The blocks were stitched in the ditch with some additional stitching within the characters. The sashing and outside border got straight line quilting just to hold it in place. I stitched in the ditch on the outside edge of the grey border.


On to the binding. Both sides are done by machine.  I start by stitching the binding to the back of the quilt.  Then I pull it to the front and stitch close to the edge.  Generally, this gives me a very nice look on the front.  Mostly the stitching on the back is either right on the binding or very close to it on the quilt and isn't very noticeable   It's my preferred binding method. 


The last thing I needed to do was add eyes to the characters. This wasn't as easy to do as it seemed at first. How do you get eyes to show up on the penguins?  I did a button search in all my button containers, several which were from my grandma.  In the end I found 3 different eye styles.  The upper left penguin got small buttons that were mostly black but had some light colored metal on the tops.  I'm pretty sure they were buttons from my grandma's collection.  I also found a pair of mottled brown and cream buttons for the guy on the bottom left.  Mr. Belly Button Penguin on the right only needed one eye.  I found a bigger white button and a really small, black doll button and sewed them on together.  You can definitely see that eye. (This penguin is sold on Mary's Etsy page along with her book.) I thought the double eye was my idea but no, that's how his eye is on the pattern. Oh well!  The snowmen and polar bears got black buttons for eyes. And a bigger black button for a nose. I guess I need a belly button on this guy. 


 
Since we had that big snow storm on Monday I thought some snow pictures would be great for the glamour shots.  Ugh, not particularly easy to do as there were mounds of snow all around the side walks and driveway.  Here's what I came up with.


And the backing -- three pieces of fabric from my stash. I was happy to be able to use fabric from my stash again!


The final shot -- the finished quilt hanging over the fireplace.  It was designed to hang there during the winter months. (Well, I might have a Valentine's Day quilt that will go up early February.) The trees were done by hubby. 


Since I always enjoy reading about the process an idea goes through to become a quilt I decided to share some of the major steps of this quilt.  And, yes, I've actually named it: Uncommon Friends.  As much as we all think penguins and polar bears should be found in the same locations they aren't.  Penguins are mostly in the southern hemisphere (with one species above the equator.)  Polar bears are found only in the arctic areas - northern hemisphere.  But, honestly, snowmen don't really have anything to do with penguins and polar bears! So they really are Uncommon Friends. And, honestly, if penguins shared a habitat with polar bears they probably would be part of their food chain. 

I will be linking up with lots of linky parties today. I hope you'll do a little surfing to see what folks are working on. 

Midweek Makers

Needle and Thread Thursday

Can I Get a Whoop, Whoop?

Finished or Not Friday

Beauties Pageant

I'm really happy with my last finish of 2021.  Now I need to start to think about a quilt or two to finish this month.  Hum, do I have any backing fabric that will work with any of the tops I have?  

Happy Quilting All!  Bonnie 







Sunday, January 2, 2022

Monday Meandering 1 - 3 - 2022

Happy New Years!  Did you stay up and watch a ball drop?  I was sound asleep by the time the year changed. Oops - not much of a partier.

I had several great days of sewing last week. Let's look at last week's goals list to see all I got done.

12/27/2021

Finish new UFO list — kind of done but need to move to computer

Pick 12 UFOs to focus on this year 

Finish quilting & bind the Peppermint Bunny top

Quilt and bind another top - Winter Animals & Snowmen. I had hoped to do another one but that didn't happen.

Work on more ombre log cabin blocks 

Work on Winter Wall hanging -- finished (see above!) 


                                                         
Hand written UFO list. Still needs to be
put on computer. And yes it continues
on the back side and another sheet of paper. 

For the UFO Challenge, number 12 was picked to be worked on in January.  For me that means the sail boat quilt.  When I started today there were 12 snowball blocks with the red and yellow sail boats. I had leftover ocean-related fabrics that I picked up on a give away table at a guild meeting.  I'm going to make 12 more snowball blocks with the tossed lighthouses.    


So far I'm planning to make a fairly small quilt with the snowballs and then add some borders to enlarge.  I might decided to sash the blocks to make the quilt a bit bigger.  These are 6" finished blocks. I would like to incorporate these bigger light houses into the quilt -- maybe at the top or the bottom. Unfortunately I have only two pieces that are at most 15" wide.  I'm going to have to be creative to include these.  I can see them at either the top or the bottom of snowballs. Time will tell. 

I've cut another 12 blocks of the ombre log cabin blocks.  I made several of them while I was making my snowball blocks.  Who said leader/enders have to be a far distance project?

Here's a sneak peak of one of the snowmen in the Winter Animals & Snowmen wall hanging.  I've still got a few more eyes to sew on before it will be hung above the fireplace this winter. 

This project has been in the works for a long time.  The blocks are all paper pieced and may I say, I'm not a fan of paper piecing any more.  It took about 3 years to get the blocks done and after a little more hibernating I finished the top. It was quilted this week before the end of December so it is my last quilt of December. 

Here's what I plan to work on this week.  Several items are continuing what I've been working on but there are a few new items. 

1/3/2022

Work on January UFO 

Make more ombre blocks

Start first round of SAHRR

Cut out Looking Glass quilt

Update Accuquilt Go dies online*

*I'm a fan of Go dies and have bought quite a few over the past year.  One of the things Accuquilt provides is a place to list all your dies.  I kept up through Christmas last year when I got several dies.  But nothing I bought this year has been entered.  And believe me with several really good sales (including the preChristmas push) I have bought several many new ones. I will be trying my new dies this year even if I only make a sample block.  

We had a wonderful weather on New Years Day.  It was in the low 70s.  This is winter in the Mid Atlantic?  Hum.... wait a day or two and it will change. 

Yep, there's a change in the weather coming.  We live approximately where the top, left side of the "m" in Richmond is.  Notice that is included in the 8" or so of snow tomorrow.  GOOD GRIEF -- it was just 70. Maybe we'll be lucky and the snow won't stick -- the ground isn't that cold.  Never fear -- I have a lot of piecing or quilting projects I can work on.  Plus about 4 books I had on reserve have become available for my Kindle in the last few days.  I'll be well entertained if we do get 8" of snow! 

A quick update at noon on Monday: 
Yep the snow came.  And, I bet we do get 8" at least.  This is the view outside my double doors in the studio. Looking at the same scene now you can't see any steps to the left, just a continuous mound of snow. It's time for me to quit reading blogs and start working on one of my goals! 

I hope you can take some time to check out these linky parties. I always find so many wonderful ideas when I surf blogs listed on these parties.  Hum, I figure I'll relax with a nice cup of tea and see what's going on. 


That's it for tonight. (Yes, I call this a Monday post but I almost always do it on Sunday evening.)  I'll be back to link up when these parties go live. 

Here's to some hot tea, reading a good book and a bit of stitching while the weather outside is frightful!  

Happy Quilting All! Bonnie