No room to sew!

I am very lucky to have a room that I can dedicate to my quilting hobby/passion/obsession.  I store all my stuff in the room…fabric, patterns,  books, batting, notions, and 2 ironing boards!  (I don’t actually use both ironing boards, I just keep fabric on them!)  I do not have any room to have my sewing machine set up or a decent place to cut out fabric.  (To be fair, it has been brought to my attention that if I tidied the room up, I would have more space.  But that is another story!)

So when its time to do some cutting and sewing, I move to the dining room table.  And, of course, I have lots of company!

These are the blocks from Grandmother’s Choice BOW.  I am a teeny bit behind with these blocks, but I will catch up!

I have finished hand-quilting another block of Sue Garman’s “Bouquet For a New Day”.

Christmas is fast approaching and it is time to bring out the Christmas quilts.  This is my daughter’s Christmas quilt.  It is called “I Believe” by Pat Sloan.

Instead of appliqueing my initials, I stitched the word MOM…..

…just to remind her that MOM upside down, is WOW!!

Til next time…



Stitching merrily along!

I was all set to start the “Family Album” block in Sue Garman’s “Friends of Baltimore”.

Then I looked at the pattern cover to see exactly how much I had left to do…(heavy sigh)…a lot!!

So I put all my finished block on my design wall to gather some inspiration and I realized that I almost had a complete row finished… except for one block.

So I am working on that block instead in the hopes that I can have a row completed by December 31.  That is my goal!  If you look closely at the pattern, you will see that the sashing is made up of many, many, many red and white half-square triangles.

First I stitched the bias in place.

I always join my bias stems underneath another piece of fabric.  You can use up a lot of short strips this way.

Then I added the bird and some leaves….

…and some more leaves.

Til next time….


Stitching the day away!

The weatherman was right.  We have snow!  I love a good snowfall.  Especially if I am indoors…quilting!

All that was left to do on the Civil War Bride block was to embroider a few stems.

So now the block is complete!

All of the blocks are on my design wall to keep the inspiration flowing!  It is sort of the opposite of “out of sight, out of mind”.   (Always in sight, always on my mind!)

The fabrics are chosen and my freezer paper copies are ready for the next block of Civil War Bride quilt.  The tail on this bird is made up of 18 (yikes!) feathers!

I can’t think of a better way to spend a snowy day than curling up on the couch, stitching the day away!   This block has lots of starts and stops, so it’s a bit time consuming.

Til next time..


Hand-quilting the night away!

What is it about hand-quilting that is so darn relaxing? I am making pretty steady progress on Sue Garman’s “Bouquets For A New Day”. When I sit down to quilt, I am always surprised at how quickly time (and stress!) seem to slip away.

And here is a close-up. I am using a Frixion pen to mark the cross-hatching. There was a bit of a discussion in my Sunday Afternoon Applique Group regarding these pens. I am always careful to test the marker on a scrap of fabric before marking the quilt top.

When my block is finished, I like to give it a warm bath to remove all residue left from the glue, starch and marking pens. Even though I pre-wash all (and I do mean all!) of my fabric in Synthrapol, my heart still skips a beat when I do this!

I am getting ready to start the next block of Sue Garman’s “Friend’s of Baltimore”. My least favorite part of appliquing is the tracing. So here is how I avoid tracing…

First, I scan the patterns and then “reflect” them. Then I print the patterns directly on to freezer paper. When a pattern has lots of layers and pieces, I usually print two or three copies. Here is the original pattern.

And here are the freezer paper copies. If you look closely, you will see that they are printed “backwards”.

The fabric for this block is already pre-washed and has the usual amount of cat hair on it!!

Til next time…


Moving right along…..

Since I have finished the basket block from Sue Garman’s “Friends of Baltimore”, I thought I would work on the next block of Civil War Bride.  Compared to the basket block, I should have this block completed in no time!  I started with the bias stems.

I have been hoarding this piece of fabric for a long time now.  I just thought on the off chance if I needed a fabric that looked like real strawberries, I would be ready!!

So I added the strawberries!

Then I added all the leaves.  I must say, after reading Teresa’s post (see my last post for details!), I have been chopping my fabric into smaller pieces, and I am coming across a few green fabrics  that I had forgotten all about.  I love using a variety of greens in my blocks!!

I am getting the tops of the strawberries prepped.  As you can see, they are tiny with some pretty nifty peaks and valleys!  Lots of fun!!

Til next time….


How I spent Saturday morning…and afternoon!

Well!  Finally the basket is filled with flowers and a bird.  All it needs is a butterfly!

I decided it would be much easier to build the butterfly off-block.  First I cut the  tiny pieces out of freezer paper and prepped them.

I should have used a magnifying glass!


Next, I glued and stitched the pieces in place.

Then, I stitched the butterfly in place on the background, starting with his lower wings.  To make everything lay nice and flat, I always baste any raw edges to the background, before I cover it with the next piece.

Next, I added the top half of his wings and his body.

And…finally!…here is the finished block!

I read an awesome post about Stash Management  by Teresa at Quilt Therapy.  When you read her blog, prepare to be amazed by her creativity and talent (and her fabric collection!)

For a while now, I have been trying to organize my stash so that I can work more efficiently.  I seem to spend a lot of time searching for fabric that I know I have (but just can’t put my fingers on it) and I spend even more time folding and re-folding fabric, but it always ends up looking like this….

….and this.  If I wanted to spend my life folding fabric, I would fold the laundry!

So, here is the perfect solution for appliquers.  Teresa suggests cutting our fabric into more manageable sizes (4″ x 6″) and storing it in plastic containers intended for photos.  Brilliant!  Thanks, Teresa!

Til next time…


Filling the Basket

Slowly (but surely!) the basket is filling up!

First, a few more flowers and buds…and some bird feet!

Finally!  I stitched the bird in place…and I added a few more flowers.

And then more flowers, buds and leaves.  I love it when the end is in sight!!

I am constructing some of the flowers off-block.  Here is the front of the flower…

…and here is the back.  Now it can be stitched onto the background.  Because this flower has four layers, I trimmed out one of the layers so that it is not so thick.

I am almost caught up on Barbara Brackman’s Grandmother’s Choice Block of the Week.

This is “Alice’s Flag” from Week 7.

Week 9 is “Brick Pavement”.

Week 10 is “New York”.

Til next time….