A View of My Quilt Life

Friday, October 31, 2014

October Recap and 2014 NewFO Link Up

The days of October have fallen like leaves off the trees! 

I am participating in Barbara at Cat Patches 2014 NewFO Challenge. Click here to see everyone's new projects  October NewFO Challenge and Linky Party

My October 2014 quilt stats:

1 new project continued & a FINISH!!
This was a continued NewFO this month - The Nine Patch: New Quilts from an Old Favorite.  This was finished with just days to spare and the entry sent off in the mail. 

Last month, I ended with just 6 of the 9 sections of the Nine Patch project, using the quilt as you go method. 

1 new project and a FINISH!!
Singer Featherweight bed protector and matching foot controller pouch. 

Hope you have more Treats than Tricks today!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

BONUS POST - Introducing: Fifty-Eight Nines!


Fifty-Eight Nines - 52" x 55"

Happy Dance Time!!

Bound, accent piece appliqued and pictures taken.  The name, "Fifty-Eight Nines" comes from the 58 different Nine Patches that make up the quilt.

Entry form for the New Quilt from an Old Favorite contest filled out, entry fee check made out, pictures burned to a CD and the whole packet mailed off! 

The label and a hanging sleeve will be added, soon.  For now, it just needs to hang on the design wall of the studio so I can revel in it's completion. 

There are a few things waiting in the wings that I need to work on. And I'll get to them, just after a dance or two!

Nine Patch Assembled!!

It's a nearly done!

The Nine Patch Project is fully quilted and assembled, just needing the binding.

It was so cool to see the top done and already quilted, rather than just a pieced top.  The 'Quilt as You Go' method has it's advantages.  It has it's own set of challenges, but I liked using it for this project. 

Sometimes when using this method, the pieces have some areas to be quilted after being assembled, if the quilt design flows from one area to the next.  That wasn't the case here as you can see from the detail pictures below.  Each section had its own quilting design.

I was so over with the machine quilting on the ninth sections blocks, that I left a few areas unquilted (see pinned areas below) until after the binding was attached.  

Part of the issue with these little sections if that the stopping/pivot point needs to be right up against the binding edge or seam edge to have it look clean and neat.

The binding will be pieced from 9 strips, of course, to keep the nine theme going to the last.  The accent piece will be added after its bound.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Quilting the 'Nine within Nine' Section

Remember when I said "But since I don’t have the make design decisions, the actual machine quilting should go quicker." 

I must have been slightly delusional at that moment.  Why I always think the quilting will go quicker than it does, I'll never know!  This particular section measures 32" x 36".  The easiest part was the center.  I quilted rays emanating from the upper right corner of the lower left block on the accent piece.  

The rays took an hour to mark and stitch out. The rest of the blocks in this section seemed to take forever. It could have been that I was ready to be done with the quilting so I could move on to assembling the the last of the parts.  I was anxious to see all of the parts together as a whole!  

In the meantime, I auditioned the accent piece in each of the four possible placements. 

Light upper right

Light lower left

Light lower right

Light upper left
Where it will end up is anyone's guess - mine too!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Nine Within Nine

Finally - The Ninth Section has been pieced!

Late Thursday night, the last 4 nine patches surrounding the inner nine patch block was pieced.  Since I had made this section without a clear cut plan on paper, the fabric choices took a little more time to decide than the other sections. 

I have to admit that the Bali ‘Breakers’ Bali Pops came in really handy for the two shaded nine patch blocks.  And for a bonus, the remainder of these strips will become the binding of the quilt.  I think it will finish off the Nine Patch project perfectly, but that’s getting ahead of myself.

Now it’s time to get this section quilted. The inner nine patch will be done in rays, coming from the upper accent piece corner. The outer ring of nine patch blocks will be quilted as close to how the larger identical sections are quilted.  Some of them will need to be simplified, of course. But since I don’t have the make design decisions, the actual machine quilting should go quicker.

Here's a quick shot of the Ninth Section top with the accent section pinned in place.

On to the machine!

Monday, October 27, 2014

And Then, the Light Was Out

I awoke early Sunday morning, determined to make some progress on the design for the upper right section of the Nine Patch quilt.  The sketch from the night before wasn't razzing me.  I need this section to tie everything together.  Hmmm.  This needed a serious cup of strong tea to get the brain cells fired up.  

And light – lots of light as the sun was not going to be seen for at least 3 more hours (got to love being on the western edge of the Eastern time zone – not!)

One thing I had forgotten to pack into the traveling studio bag was graph paper – REALLY?!!  How stupid could I be!   Here I was facing a 32” x 36” section of quilt that needed to be designed, with multiple nine patch configurations and I had no graph paper.  

Obviously, I was going to have to use more brain power when working to remember what I was thinking since I was without a detailed road map to get there.  Rough sketches started to flow and then it hit me.  I needed to incorporate all the other sections nine patch layouts into this one.  But then, take it a step further and have a new nine patch to showcase the accent piece.

Energized by the revelation, I started cutting some fabric.  Excellent – not yet 6 am and I was ready to sit down at the machine & start stitching.

Except when I turned on the Singer workhorse, no light!  ACK!!! Had my machine died during the night?  I had all this work to do in front of me and now – no sewing machine!  Since I had switched on two overhead lights, a lamp & the iron, I knew I had power in the house.  Did the plug on the machine wear out & was failing to make a strong enough connection?  I switched the machine on & off, almost frantic, thinking if it didn't fire up, I could drag out Lillian, the 1933 Singer 99.  But my machine was working perfectly just 8 hours previously. What happened??

Okay – BREATHE!!!   Sit and sip some tea to wake up the rest of the brain cells.  As I sat back in my chair, my foot hit the control pedal and the machine and she zoomed ahead.

OH DUH!!!!   The machine was getting power – only the light was out. It was not the end of the world.  

Just a huge pain as a replacement bulb was over 20 minutes away.  And, I hadn't bought the new Ikea light with me because the base is very heavy.  I now knew exactly what I needed – the Ikea lamp with the clip on base that I hadn't bought because I didn't think I really needed it, because I hadn't foreseen this happening, because I thought it indulgent to buy 3 lamps at one time.

Because sometimes I’m an idiot.

Fortunately, DH and I have to go to Ikea to look at some curtains for the master bedroom sometime this week.

I’ll be buying the Jansjo lamp with the clip base…maybe two of them.

Friday, October 24, 2014

As the Worlds Collide...

So there I was minding my own business and the BAM, the need to shop for quilt fabric hit out of nowhere!

Okay – a slight exaggeration but that’s how it felt.  I’ve been fairly, mostly, and sometimes entirely of the ‘Shop the Stash’ mindset.   My stash is what I would consider medium.  Over the past two years, I have sorted through, carefully and then ruthlessly culling out fabrics that I no longer am enamored of or will never get around to using – flannels, homespun, traditional prints, conventional blenders, a few panels, etc.  All of them were passed on to other quilters who will love & use them up. 

Then three things collided in my world.  The 2014 Bonnie Hunter Mystery Quilt colors were released, I was heading to Michigan for a weekend (only a hop, skip & jump from Shipshewana) and time to stock up for winter shopping.  

That set up the perfect reason / opportunity to head to Shipshewana to do some lying in of provisions for winter.  I like to hit the bulk food store for spices, tea, jam, etc.  What’s a quilter to do when traveling to quilt fabric Mecca with color cards and fabric swatches from the stash?  I would just look to just see, if perchance, there are a few half-yard cuts or fat quarters wanting to come home with me…

I knew, at a minimum that I need to buy the black batik – nothing in the stash – and check the neutrals, as I only wanted to use 1 or 2 at the most in the new mystery quilt and I sure didn’t have that yardage at home. 

My pink collection at home is a little light after last year’s mystery quilt, when I changed the yellow to pink, and I wanted hotter, deeper pinks, edging into violet.  I found some awesome half-yard cuts.

I decided to lighten the green from grass to lime, well, actually Robert Kaufman AMD-7000 KIWI.  

 And since I was lightening the green, I deepened the turquoise.

I found the exact black batiks I wanted!!  I had cruised the internet last week, checking out some batiks for ideas and found this one – and Lolly’s had it! YAY!

The neutral was an issue – it couldn’t be too cold, or dark, or too grey, definitely not tan-ish or yellow-y.  It had to be perfect!  I found half-yard cuts of two prints in oyster - just warm enough and almost shimmery against the black and deep tones.

That brings me to yellow.  Since I had altered the other colors, a golden yellow wouldn’t stand up to them.  I need lemon – bright clear and not too variegated. Yellow batiks are not a dime a dozen.  It took three quilt shops to find just the right one. Lighter than I thought it might be, but the clearest lemon I could find.

As you can see, I totally fell off the fabric shopping wagon.  Sometimes, you just have to splurge a little and what better to spend it on than fabric.

Have a great weekend -  I need to go wash some fabric...