Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Quilting Pattern Inspiration

Look closely above and you can see my quilting pattern. Do you see that circle quilted in the upper left square of the nine patch? That's the flower center with petal radiating outward. Around and around i go.

Every so often I move over and start a new flower, letting them meet organically.

I love the texture it's creating over the quilt. Today I'll finish the quilting on this one - yay! Then one more to quilt.

This was the inspiration for the quilting pattern. Lovely...

Rainy day here, but at least there should be no severe weather. We've had enough of that this week. So much damage and death in our state from all these storms.

Today's list:
1. Finish quilting the nine patch quilt!
2. Start the applique on a special block I've designed (more on this soon!)
3. Photograph the May 2014 Hexie BOM - I'll post it here tomorrow!
4. Make more lists: one for Chicago in June, one for my quilt guild retreat in a couple of weeks, one for another little project I'm starting, one for some future speaking engagements, one get the picture!

Happy Hump Day!

Tuesday, April 29, 2014


Here's where I sat most of the day yesterday - machine quilting on my HQ Sixteen. I'm doing a freeform flower design inspired by a bloom in our back yard. I'm guessing I completed about 40% of the quilting. Today I'll try to do about 30% and then try to finish the quilting tomorrow.

I will need a good nap today - the storms came through Alabama all night long. The bad part hit us at about 3:45 this morning, though we were awake off and on all night keeping up with the storm progress. Luckily we have no damage around here and didn't even lose power.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Meeting Deadlines

I had promised myself to have NO DEADLINES this year.  So how did I get myself into this situation? I have several deadlines looming at the moment. A couple of custom quits. A new block to design and make. Putting together kits for teaching in Chicago in June (have I mentioned I'm teaching there?) Oh my!!!!

But this weekend I took a little time off for reading on the patio - that's Mickey in my lap.

And yesterday we spent a few hours at the lake with my handsome boy.

I did do some hand sewing while lounging on the pier - hexies, of course!

When we got home I basted a quilt - I'll start quilting it today. Sounds like bad weather is coming over the next few days - ready to hunker down and sew through the storms.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Do You Have a Quilt Bucket List?

I put these blocks together yesterday - just needs borders.

Do you have a QBL? A Quilt Bucket List? I read a post on someone's blog a few months ago. The writer said she's beginning to realize that she doesn't have enough years left to make all the quilts she wants to make. I got to thinking about that and decided I need to make a list of quilts that I want to make sooner rather than later. I'm sure this list will grow, but here's my first shot at it.

Julia's Quilt Bucket List:
1. Lollypop Trees (I've had this as a WIP for years, need to get back on it!)
2. Sue Spargo Leaf Play (another WIP)
3. Scrappy Double Wedding Ring
4. Scrappy Churn Dash
5. Portrait quilt of Cooper
6. Fractured (pattern from Material Obsession)
7. Nosegay Quilt (want to design my own version)
8. Scrappy Trips Around the World

Most of these are actually easy peasy! I'm going to save my list as a Word Document so I can easily add to it. Occasionally I'll repost it along with my progress.

What's on your QBL?

Monday, April 14, 2014

A New Shelf

This morning's project didn't involve sewing. We have a back hallway in our house that leads to the garage. I hung this old fence piece on the wall last year. I've been wanting a very narrow console under it, but haven't been able to find one that wasn't WAY too expensive.

I saw an idea on Pinterest that used plumbing pieces as shelf supports. I though it could work! So I spray painted my recently purchased plumbing parts over the weekend. Today was the day to put it all together.

Above you can see where I've screwed the flanges into the wall.

We bought a simple white shelf from Home Depot to go on top.

I also bought some drawer knobs and a funny giraffe hook to attach to the fence piece - I'll hang things on these.  I pinned one of my small quilts to the fence, too.

I'm not sure if I like how I've styled it - looks a bit like a junk store, but I'll keep working on it!

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Jeans Pocket Quilt

Today I got tired of walking all over these denim pieces that have been lying in the floor for a week. There is no room on my design wall for them! So I took a break from other projects and put this together.

It's certainly not done! There will be lots of appliqué to do on this, but that will have to wait.  Yes, I know one of the pockets is upside down - that was intentional.

Glad I did this. I'm folding it up and putting it aside for now. And my denim scraps are all gone! (And my floor is clear.)

Most of you realize I have TWO blogs. It's tricky! I post hexie stuff on the other blog and everything ELSE quilty related (and family and house and dogs and recipes) here. Next time you see this quilt, it will be on The Hexie Blog. That's a BIG hint about the future of the quilt!

Here's Where the Flying Geese Landed

See all my flying geese? Made into stars! I just have the blocks laid out on a bed - not sure about that blue fabric just yet.

And here's the other quilt.

I'm making these twin quilts for a client who wants coordinating, but different quilts on each bed. So I used the same fabrics in each, but varied the main block pattern. These blocks finish at 8" square. I'm auditioning another blue fabric today. Then the blocks will be ready to sew together. I'll be adding simple borders before quilting. Onward!

Friday, April 11, 2014

Garden Pics

Almost too tired to blog. All the gardening is done by hubby. Luckily he really enjoys it.

I sewed 152 squares on either side of half of the flying geese units. No photos. Tomorrow the stars will come together.

Good night....zzz....

Thursday, April 10, 2014

A Gaggle of Geese

Today I made 152 flying geese units. One hundred fifty two. Marathon goose day. Whew.

I trimmed all the dog ears into my orange solo cup. I started collecting my dog ears as I trimmed up my Celtic Solstice pieces. Does this make me a hoarder? I hope not. Some people collect sand from beaches they visit, layering them in a jar. Me? I'm saving dog ears. Same difference? I need a glass jar. One with a lid so I can't spill them. Like I did this afternoon.

Aren't they pretty?

The power went out this morning for a couple of hours (construction work boo boo in the neighborhood). During that flying geese break I pulled out the leftover pockets and denim scraps left after I made hubby's birthday quilt. Hmm. I think I see a wall hanging there.

Isn't this boy sweet? Here he is cuddling with his favorite toy. He loves his toy.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

IPhone Fun and Nine Patches

I got a new toy last week. An Olloclip Macro 3 in 1 lens that attaches to my IPhone. WHAT FUN! This is the center of a dogwood blossom. Cool, huh?

This week I'm making 9 patches - very traditional 9 patches. This is trickier than it looks. I'm making two twin quilts with different patterns but the same fabrics. The nine patch blocks are obviously divisible by 3. The other quilt will have blocks divisible by 4. The easy solution would be to make 12" blocks for both quilts for easy cutting.

But of course I never do things the easy way. I didn't want big 12" blocks. I decided 8" blocks would be good - not too big and not too little. So 8" blocks will mean easy cutting for the pattern which is divisible by 4. But the nine patches? GRRR....

8 divided by 3 equals 3.166666667. How do you cut a strip that size accurately?

I guessed where it would be on my ruler and put a piece of tape on the line. I cut a few strips and sewed a few seams. Then I measured. Nope, not correct. I adjusted the tape, cut some more strips, sewed more seams - VOILA! I ended up with a perfect 8.5" nine patch (8" finished). 

I spent the morning yesterday cutting strips and in the afternoon I started piecing nine patches. ALL the perfect size! YAY!

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Denim Quilt!

Today was hubby's birthday! In a matter of days (WHEW!) I made him this denim quilt. These were my jeans that I purged from my closet in January.

I decided to put our last name on it with a bleach pin - easy peasy!

Gotta love the worn hems! I decided to include these for added texture.

And I pieced some checker board units to throw in here and there.

I only included one pocket, but of course I had to put a hexie on it!

It wasn't easy to make this so quickly while hubby was home sick almost all week. But he didn't have a clue - it was a nice surprise. This quilt will probably go with us to ball games on chilly nights - perfect for that!

Busy day today! I had coffee with a few of my college sorority sisters who were in town today. Then hubby and I went out to nice lunch with our daughters. Made a quick trip to campus to visit with yet another sorority bestie and her daughters. Grilled out steaks tonight. I think I'll sleep well tonight.....

Friday, April 4, 2014

Evelyn, Binding, and a Food Truck

Here's Evelyn with the beginnings of her portrait of Martin Luther King. She spent a day with me last week enjoying a private lesson on portrait quilts. I know it just looks like blobs of fabric now, but when finished it will be a realistic portrait in shades of brown - great job, Evelyn! What fun we had!

I spent a bit of time this week on binding - you know what that means! A finish! I'll share it with you tomorrow, I promise!

There is LOTS of construction in our neighborhood as new houses are constantly popping up. The Triny's food truck makes multiple stops in the area to feed all the construction workers. As of late, it stops right in front of our house. Convenient, eh? But, I've been a bit hesitant to head out and line up with all the hard hats.

We had some landscaping done in our backyard this week - the nicest two guys did a great job! Their second day of work they bought me lunch! From the food truck! Can you even imagine?

It looks a little messy here, but it was DELISH! It's a huge burrito. I'm doing the low carb thing, so I opened it up to avoid that yummy tortilla. I'm thinking I may put on my own hard hat and boots and get in line with the guys from now on...

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Pedal to the Metal!

Cooper may be relaxing, but I'm not! I've been at my machine for hours working to finish a project so I can start another one. The life of a quilter - gotta love it! :)

Here was the view from my studio yesterday. This little bird kept me company.

Does anyone know what kind of lizard this is? (Click to enlarge.) We typically have the little green lizards around here, but this is bigger. Prince caught and ate one of these yesterday. Then he proceeded to throw up all afternoon. Fun stuff...  :(

Found this huge feather in the backyard yesterday - any idea on what kind of bird it came from?

Today I'm teaching a private lesson on portrait quilts here at Hexie Haven - she's coming from out of town for the lesson.  Hubby is home with kidney stones - poor thing! And we are having some landscaping being done in our yard today. Always something going on around here.

I posted the April 2014 Hexie BOM here yesterday - go check it out!