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Thursday, April 30, 2015

Leading right along...

Three things to be happy about:
(1) a good camera
(2) light showers
(3) a morning stretch

It's bright and early... I woke up at around 3:30 am and had a good stretch, then I thought about the Idaho Square Dance blocks, then I got up to sew just one more seam... yadda yadda yadda I haven't been back to bed and I'm up way earlier than I meant to be!  Morning stretches are good things though  :o)

I'm piecing...

I'm leading...

I'm ending...

- never mind the fact that I need to be quilting and binding my WeeBee challenge quilt!

The flimsy has been finished for weeks, it just needs to be quilted - sheesh!

I went ahead and put one Idaho SD block together just to have something to look at while I worked on the pieces and parts.

Then I noticed that in Bonnie's blocks, she uses the same fabric for that long strip on the sides...

... so I put another block together, using the same middle square, just to see what I saw.

Scrappy... or controlled?

The jury is still out, I kinda like both!

There will definitely be sashing included - or even an alternate block - which could affect the way the finished quilt looks anyway.

Either way, I like the block!  What a clever use of 1-1/2" strips, Bonnie!

Do you think I could get just two more hours of sleep before I get back up?  I'll know in about an hour!  Enjoy your day, sew forth and sew on til later!

Monday, April 27, 2015

Pieces and parts

Three things to be happy about
(1) oatmeal for breakfast
(2) Benefiber on the go packets *wink*
(3) the morning newscast

This is a post about bits and pieces, but first I want to tell you about a bad idea!

I noticed my cutting board is getting threads embedded in places where I use the same lines a lot, so I had the bright idea to use one of those soft scrubbie things to clean it out.

Bad idea - don't do this at home!

Can you see how some of the lines are slightly faded?  I b'lieve the scrubbie thing scrubbed off some of the printed lines!

Moving right along...

Still prepping the pieces for the Idaho Square Dance leader ender blocks...

1-1/2 by 3-1/2 strips for the sides.

See the cute baby?  I think this was a piece of Alexander Henry fabric, can't be sure though.

threesies, to be added to the 1-1/2 x 3-1/2 strips

and twosies, for the four patches.

These haven't been cross cut yet - easy peasy!

I won't get much sewing done today, I have to do some out of the house things, including my front yard!

I don't understand why I can't have good grass out there, the soil might be bad.  Believe me, over the years I've tried at  least 4 kinds of grass, it just doesn't take!  Going back to mulch seems a good idea right now; I'll add some small plants.

That's it for now, gotta eat breffus and get started!  Sew forth and sew on til later

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Busy bees at Wee Bee

Three things to be happy about:
(1) tomato sandwiches
(2) a new TV series
(3) scratching an itch

We had a wonderful time at bee yesterday!  Several activities were scheduled, including swapping of the Christmas blocks and show n tell of portraits from last month's class...

Loretta portrayed her son at different ages...

Gwen's grand-daughter...

and Sondra's family series... her granddaughter, daughters, grandson, hubby and Sandy herself.

Great jobs, ladies - these portraits were worth waiting for!

Our main activity was sewing pillowcases for donation to the Hospital for Sick Children here in the District.  We collected at least 50 pillowcases; more will be completed and brought to May's meeting.

Pillowcases are relatively easy to make; several of us got our info from You Tube - here are two links you might find useful:  Missouri Star Quilt Company,  Crafty Gemini and Fat Quarter Shop.  

That's it for now, enjoy your Sunday; sew forth and sew on til later!

Friday, April 24, 2015

Leader-enders; fun times

Three things to be happy about:
(1) a good breakfast
(2) saying hello
(3) asking questions

I'm back from spending a couple days with my sister in Atlantic City and we had a great time!  I took the train rather than driving and now I know what "regional" means - I swanee it was stopping under every shade tree picking up people!  In Philadephia I changed to a NJ Transit commuter train, same deal.  I wanted an inexpensive ticket, but next time it's the Acela for me!

On Wednesday we walked the boardwalk from the middle to the end and back, a nice breezy walk.  It's kinda sad to see how changed everything is, though; partly because of Sandy and partly just plain ole hard times, I guess.

I started off breakfast yesterday at the Buca di Beppo Italian restaurant in Bally's with this delicious bowl of fruit.

The strawberries were ripe and juicy, the blueberries and grapes had just the right "pop," and the melon was sweet and delicious.

I like funny signs, don't you?

I saw this one in the Wild Wild West casino...

Thank goodness it was Wednesday!

Back on the home front I'm still prepping for sewing my Idaho Square Dance leader-ender pieces...

I've sewn some of the 4-patches, it looks like the leader-enders need a leader-ender!  It's about to take over being the main block.

I'm spinning the center seam of the 4-patches like Bonnie Hunter of Quiltville  showed us.

This makes for a really flat seam and it's easy to do!

A few of the 4-patches done so far; I think I'm going to like doing this block!

And last but not least - Shell told me her grandson ran into the kitchen and tattled on his twin sister: "Grandmommy!  Jaelyn is twerking!"  In my innocence I asked her "Exactly what is twerking, anyway??"


That leads to the question - should a 69-year-old twerk???   LOL

Sew forth and sew on til later...

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Addicted to...

Three things to be happy about
(1) hard peppermint candy
(2) going thru your pocketbook
(3) being graceful

When I was a kid my grandmother used to sit and hum while she dug and dug and dug through her pocketbook.  Me:  "What you doing, Mama Brown?"  Mama Brown:  "Going through my pocketbook."  Me:  "Oh."   I guess it made her happy.

Bonnie Hunter's Quilt-Cam always gets me going, sometimes in a whole new direction!

I saw her Idaho Square Dance Addicted to Scraps block in the May/June 2015 Quiltmaker Magazine and thought to myself, "Hmmm, maybe I'll have to make that one some day!"

But after I watched the latest Quilt Cam, guess what ... I want "someday" to be real soon!

It's her newest leader/ender project, using 1-1/2" squares ... 1-1/2"!!  This calls for shortcuts using my 1-1/2" strips!

Just to test and make sure I want to have two leader/ender projects going at the same time, I started  by sewing a light and dark strip together.

For maximum scrappy variety you'll want to use strips that are on the short side!

I cross cut the strips into 1-1/2" slices and resewed for the 4-patches.

For that strip at the bottom of the block I sewed a dark-light-dark combination and cross cut into 1-1/2" slices, then combined it with the 1-1/2" x 3-1/2" strip called for.

Looks good, this is definitely a candidate for leader/enders!

Sew together light-dark and dark-light-dark strips, cross cut into chunks - sew as directed!

I can switch these off with the lozenges I just cut fabric for, it'll keep me from getting bored with the same thing.

I'll be leaving today to spend a couple days with my sister in New Jersey, be back on Thursday afternoon.  Have a great rest of the week everybody, sew forth and sew on til later!

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Guild meeting

Three things to be happy about:
(1) a new keyboard
(2) large binder clips
(3) making address labels

I believe there's nothing better than a quilt show, but the great show n tell eye candy at our guild meetings runs a close second!

The maker of this quilt-in-progress kept saying "I'm not as good as all of you, but some day I hope to get better!"  Well, in my opinion she doesn't have a thing to worry about - she's already there!

I don't know about the rest of you, but when I quilt, I do me!  There's no one else exactly like me...

Every year Jennifer does a t-shirt quilt for the National Education Association (NEA), which they raffle off at their annual meeting.

They send her loads of t-shirts - she chose to use a blue, white and red theme this year.

Check out the back!

There's one, the black one in the middle, that has lots of bling that would have given the LA problems.

Appliqueing it on the back was a clever way to incorporate it into the quilt after it was long arm quilted.

You gotta love this pattern!

It's a four-patch using sightly elongated blocks; those narrow strips are the sashing.


Maxine did needle turn applique on these, I love em!

Wholecloth never looked better!  Elsie added beading to the middle of the flower...

Maxine chose this easy wholecloth piece to make a quick and easy service quilt.

Bird houses and stars!  I love those colors Jeanette used.

See the quilting detail.

That's it for now, thanks for letting me share guild eye candy with you.  Sew forth and sew on til later!

Friday, April 17, 2015

Adventures in fabric cutting

Three things to be happy about:
(1) Spring springing
(2) self-discipline
(3) figuring it out

I was looking at Bonnie's latest quilt cam and it made me want to dive back into those lozenge leader-enders that I started some time ago!  But first, I wanted to change the blade in my cutter.

Has this ever happened to you?  I had disassembled the cutter when something on the news caught my attention, so I put down the handle and turned around to look at the TV.  When I turned back and put it together... oops!!

uhmm... something's not quite right!
not this either!

Here we go, this is the right way!

Fortunately I remembered that some of my pictures have the cutter in them, so I went back to my camera and found what I needed - whew!

Now for the lozenges...

I started by cutting a bunch of 3-1/2 x 6-1/2 pieces for the main part, using whatever came to my hand.

I have very very few 3-1/2" strips, so I was working mainly from scraps and uglies for these.

Here's a fun piece!

Some time ago I was in an online food post card swap; this was left over from a Kellogg's corn flake post card.

Bonnie would say "toss it in there!" - so I did!

I followed her advice and pinned the pieces into sets of 10, this sure makes it easy to see at a glance how many you have.

100 pieces - just the tip of the iceberg, but it's a start!

Then I pulled all the precut blacks and neutrals from my 2" strip bin... I need more, I think!

A few 2" squares.

I'll cut more and take these to guild meeting tomorrow, it's a no-brainer to draw the diagonal lines during the meeting.

If I have plenty of these at the sewing machine and ready to sew, I'm more apt to actually DO them - I'm on my way!

That's it for now, it's a gorgeous day out there, get out and enjoy it!  Sew forth and sew on til later!