Friday, August 18, 2017

Finished or Not Friday!

Not a big finish this week but a necessary one. I made 2 skinny place mats for our camper. The table in our 5th wheel is not very wide and regular sized place mats overlap. So as I was going through a tote ( looking for my misplaced Fiskars) I found 4 orphan blocks left over from the quilt I made for Mr. Busy in 2009.  He flies RC airplanes as a hobby and I found a log cabin block with alternate setting applique blocks in a magazine. The original had bears in the alternate blogs, but the designer said, use your own idea. So a plane block was born. I found a very basic plane shape in a children's coloring book. We use that quilt in the camper now when we attend some "fly-ins".  Kind of like a quilt retreat for RC flyers. All that background just so you know about why these particular blocks.

They are 9.5" by 16".  They are backed with a piece of leftover denim fabric and bound with the leftover binding from the original quilt.

I ventured out to the camper this morning as soon as there was enough light to take this photo of the quilt on the bed. This angle is from the side of the bed. The slide is in, so I couldn't stand at the end of the bed. 

Sort of standing at the corner. Can you see the wall pocket I made to hang , in place of a night stand. A place for glasses, a book, cell phone and a bottle of water. I had lots of the airplane fabric that was the border of the quilt, the backing, and the binding.

Also a not finished yet.........just back from the long arm quilter.. My disappearing hour glass wall hanging that I did at our WY State Quilt Guild convention. I am calling it George and Martha.
The white fabric has cherries on it, the flowers on the border remind me of geraniums (Martha Washington geranium) and the backing is the Declaration of Independence. Sort of patriotic and maybe it will be added to my July 4th decor.

Still needs to be trimmed and the binding sewed on. I realize looking at this photo, the border looks kind of muddy. Not the image I was hoping for. When I finish it up, I'll try to get an outdoor photo with better light. 

You can just barely see the gray writing on the cream background fabric. I'll shoot for a better photo of that too, when the binding in complete. 

Well, that was a rambling post. Until next time, 

Stay Busy and Stay Happy. 
I am linking this long post to Busy Hands Quilts  Finished or Not Friday linky party. 

Friday, August 11, 2017

Finished or Not Friday Snowy Tote

 I'm linking up with Myra at Busy Hand Quilts and Finished or Not Friday. 

Finally I have a finish.   It is Snowy Tote from Connecting Threads.  It's 10" X 12" tall and approximately 4" deep.   I purchased the kit quite a while ago from Connecting Threads.  I am a sucker for fabric with words, and the fabric in this kit had lots of fun words. Like"Mittens, Snowflakes, Brrr!, Cold Hands, Warm Heart"  I started it last October at a retreat. Got stopped because the next step was to quilt the sandwich before assembling the bag. That always stalls me. I can Stitch in the Ditch, I can follow a grid, some stipple.  The instructions did call for "in the ditch" and a grid pattern on the back. Anyway, it got set aside. Then I put it on my challenge list for another group I belong to.  It is the challenge due to be done for our September 17th meeting. Success!!

The front is patchwork.

The back is a piece of fabric, with side pieces and then a tiny strip and a larger top piece. The entire tote is done in a single slab of pieces, quilted with the lining as the backing of the sandwich and then sewn into the tote shape . The bottom is a separate piece.  Inside, all the seams are sewn right sides together and then the seams are finished with a zig zag.  There are no inner pockets, but they could be added easily enough, if I make this pattern again. I have quite a bit of leftover fabric, the kit was very generous. 

The top is then bound with bias binding,  as are the handles. I really like it. Now to decide... do I keep it for me, give it for a gift or donate it to the county library's Christmas Silent Auction. All proceeds from the auction are used to buy craft, sewing, needle art type books. 

Until next time
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Monday, July 31, 2017

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

I am linking up late to Book Date's feature, It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

If I had written and posted this late Sunday, I could tell you I was reading Liar, Liar, Tabloid Writer 

by Suzy Quint.  But it is now 2:00 pm Monday and I just finished it. Rather abruptly too, I might add. It was coming to a conclusion, I thought. Annaliese has been arrested, Alec has just discovered the relationship between Annaliese and Cleo. And he was starting to have some real feelings for Cleo. Then the last sentence says, Cleo and Alec's story concludes in Liar, Liar, Heart's Desire.  Bummer!

So now I'll go on to reading the last of the 3 summer selections for my Face to Face book club. We meet again in September. We decided to pick 3 novel of Fredrik Backman. I have finished A Man Called Ove and My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She's Sorry. So I will read
Britt- Marie Was Here  this week.

Because I like these books so much I may have to pick another before the week is over. If that happens, I guess I'll chose between Jane Green's The Beach House 

and Kristin Hannah's Between Sisters.  Any one have a favorite? 

Until next time, I'll be reading and putting a binding on a Christmas Wall Hanging. Maybe I'll even finish the place mats for the camper. Or maybe I'll just hang out on Facebook and wait for my son or daughter-in-law to post pictures of their new granddaughter.  She is our 5th great grandchild. She lives in Arizona, so I don't know when we will get to meet her in person. 

Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Friday, July 21, 2017

Finish It Up Friday or maybe it's really Not!

Last weekend I attended our Wyoming State Quilt Guild convention that was held in my town. We had a wonderful time, great regional teachers and 2 fabulous National Teachers, J. Michelle Watts and Susan Brubaker Knapp. They each taught a class and had a trunk show.

I took a class from a designer and teacher from Billings MT.  This is my finished table topper/wall hanging.
 It is going to my friend and long arm quilter today. I am considering it a finish for today....but I will share it when the binding is done.

I really like the backing. This fabric has been in my stash for a few years. I seem to pick up fabric with words whenever I can. This one works for the backing here. The white fabric on the front has cherries, white on white.  I am considering some George Washington, Cherry Tree , Patriotic reference when I decide to give it a name. I think the floral border has a reproduction feel also.

I have permission to share these photos of some of the other projects completed or partially completed by some of my friends.

 This is the project made by my friend Carolyn. It was a class in the technique of using a special ruler.

 A tuffet class was very popular. And demanding according to my friend Lynn.

My friend Maggie, made two tuffets. This brightly colored one and the one below, all sewing themed fabric for use in her studio.  Talk about an over-achiever!  She was also the co-chair for the entire convention.

Maggie also entered a piece in the quilt show. It was a peoples choice type competition,and this is her entry. Applique and custom quilted. She won 2nd place.

This photo shows the back of the applique piece . Isn't it marvelous?

I am linking up with Finish It Up Friday at Crazy Mom Quilts and  Finished or Not Friday at Busy Hands Quilts. 

Until next time
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Monday, July 17, 2017

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? 7-17-17

Good Morning!   It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a place to meet up and share what you have been, are and about to be reading over the week.  It's a great post to organise yourself. It's an opportunity to visit and comment, and er... add to that ever growing TBR pile! So welcome in everyone. This meme started with J Kaye's Blog   and then was taken up by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn at the Book Date. And here we are!

I finished One True Thing by Anna Quindlen.  

See this post or  here is my review on Goodreads. 

I got started on 
and so far it is living up to my expectations. 

I still have Liar Liar, Tabloid Writer on my Kindle. I haven't been back to it, but at soon as the J.D. Robb book( a library loan) is finished, I will go on to Ms. Quint's offering. 

Investigative journalist Cleo Morgan’s stories have created Pulitzer buzz, but circumstance push her into a lucrative but career-destroying job writing for a tabloid.

Alejandro Ramirez is blown away by the new star reporter. There's definitely chemistry. Except she thinks she's better than everyone at the tabloid where they work. That grates on him since she's going to be writing stories about aliens and Elvis sightings just like the rest of them.

In spite of the chemistry, she doesn't want to have anything to do with the smug news whore she thinks he is. Except she's already having fantasies about this hot Cuban ex-pat who's showing her the ropes at her new job. Before they have a chance to make this attraction work, Cleo's mother, an ex-Vegas showgirl, is charged with the murder of a Las Vegas casino owner. To clear her mother, Cleo will have to see that Alejandro hasn't sold out, and he will learn that she really is as good as she thinks she is.

I thought I might have some down time while attending the state Quilt Convention this weekend, but I was out of the house at 6 am and did not return until after 8 pm. By then I was so tired that only a shower and a glass of wine seemed appropriate. So I will work on Ceremony in Death this week and also some of the projects acquired at the vendor booths this weekend.  😃

I am linking up with Kathryn at Book Date. What are you reading this week?

Until next time, 
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

One True Thing by Anna Quindlen

I just finished this and wanted to share.

This is actually the first paragraph in the prologue.

"Jail is not as bad as you might imagine. When I say jail, I don't mean prison. Prison is the kind of place you see in old movies or public television documentaries, those enormous gray places with guard towers at each corner and curly strips of razor wire going round and round like a loop-the-loop atop the high fence. Prison is where they hit the bars with metal spoons, plan insurrection in the yard, and take the smallest boy--the one in on the first offense--into the shower room, while the guards pretend not to look and leave him to find his own way out, (...) the shadow at the backs of his eyes changed forever." 

I left out a particular graphic part of the last sentence. None of us need to read that to know what happened. Although this scene is intense and others are too, I really, really liked this book. I recommend it for all. We all can understand the mother daughter relationship between Kate and Ellen Gulden.

This is not a new book, probably many have read it. But if not, I think it is worth a look.

Til next time,
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Monday, July 10, 2017

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

It's really summer here in the high plains desert!  All last week the temperature reached 90 and above. This week looks like a repeat. That is hot for our part of the country!  Thank goodness it cools off some at night. I am writing this post at 6:23 am local time and it is 61 degrees. We have central air but it is an old system and we hate the noise. So we turn off the compressor as soon as the sun goes down and it starts to cool.

I am keeping up with my goal of reading 24  books this year. I realize that is doable and a not a lofty goal. Most of you bookies read many many more. But I do what I can do.

I'm almost finished with:

One True Thing by Anna Quindlen.  This book is amazing. I mean the story is wonderful, about the relationship between a daughter and her mother and father. But Ms Quindlen says things that most of us only think and would not likely utter out loud. A few pages back, a passage touched me deeply. It has been a long while since a book felt so personal and brought me to tears. Not sobbing, inconsolable tears, but the "OMG, how did she know this about me" kind. 

Upcoming this weekend, is our state quilt guild convention. I will be there Friday, Saturday and some of Sunday. This year it is in our own town, so I will sleep in my own bed. But of course, meals will be shared, friendships renewed and hopefully new techniques will be learned. If I get One True Thing finished early on, next up is: 

I know I will enjoy this one too, but in a totally different way. 

That's what I'm reading, what are you reading this week?  I'm linking up with Kathryn at Book Date. Come by and check what other book bloggers are into. 

Until next time
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Finish It Up Friday ! Pinnies and a SB baby gift

Last week was a kind of slow week as far as finishes go.  I did do two pincushions, inspired by Amanda Jean.  But I cheated.  The first one was a re-do. Years ago I made a pincushion to match my family room colors, using Doreen Speckmann's Norwegian Chicken Pincushion pattern. The pattern is dated 1997, but I think I made it around 2001 or 2002. Shortly after my breast cancer treatments and my learning to quilt. I developed a seam malfunctions ( due to improper construction I am sure) and so I then un stuffed it and fixed the open seam. There is sat all floppy and un stuffed. Until Amanda Jean asked if we had a pincushion collection and I gathered all mine together. There she sat, forlorn and unloved. I decided to fix that!  Here she is, stuffed and sitting up proudly.

The little pincushion beside her is really a cheat!  I backed a baby quilt with this chevron fabric. When I sent it to the quilter, she had used the edges to practice and check her there was this scrap of cute fabric already "quilted to batting" and I just put a backing on it, stitched it into a rectangle, filled it with walnut shells and Voila!!  , a tiny pincushion for my couch side sewing basket.  Here is the other side of both pinnies.

Also this week, I got busy and put together a self-binding receiving blanket for the sister of my daughter-in-law.  I had the yellow surfboard flannel in my stash and found the robot blue flannel at JoAnn's.  The new baby is a boy and his big brother  and parents are all tech types. I thought the robot fabric was too cute to pass up. It turned out really well, I think.

And a better look at the backing fabric and the stitching that holds it all together. Have you ever done one of these?  Super easy and fun.

It's a Missouri Star tutorial...they even have a snuggle ( minky) version.

Anyway, those are my Friday Finishes.

I'll be linking up with Amanda at Crazy Mom Quilts.

Til next time
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

ps: I also finished reading,

both really good. 

Friday, June 30, 2017

Finish It Up Friday----Shhhhhh! It's a Secret!

A Challenge Met

My Friday finish is for a challenge. One quilting group I belong to has an annual retreat in October. Last year, we were to bring a yard of FALL fabric for a game and and exchange. The game was played kind of like musical chair. We each had our yard of fabric and passed it to the right as fast as we could til the music stopped. The fabric you were holding at the time, was torn in half. One half you kept and the other half continue to be passed. This went on until there was too little to tear in half. We each ended up with 5 pieces, ranging in size from 1/2 a yard down to just a chunk. I wish that I had take a picture of the fabric before I started my project.   The challenge was to make something from the fabric you took home. You were allowed to add a piece of two from your stash to complete the item.  The item will be revealed at our retreat in October this year.

 This is all the fabric that is left after I finished my table runner.  I had no idea what I was going to do with those pieces of fabric, but was lucky enough to get the orange floral in the 1/2 yard and the orange with the brown acorn as the 1/4 yard. I added the "ucky"green mottled, mainly because it picked up the green in the floral and the green in the leaf fabric. That was a odd one. Grey background, with green, rust and dark blue leaves.

 I also added the beige moda marble as the constant light background for my pattern.

I had taken a class at our LQS using this book by Deb Heatherly and the accompanying Cat's Cradle ruler by Creative Grids.  I decided to give a pattern in the book a try.

The pattern is called Appalachian Table Runner. It uses 2" squares, 2" by 3" rectangles of various fabrics and  larger rectangles (3.5" X 4.5")  and  12 squares( 3" X 3") of the light background.  Also the centers of the stars are cut 5.5" square.

This is the finished table runner. From this angle you can see I also added 2 dark squares to get variety. They sort of jump out at you, don't they!  All in all I am very pleased. I used the floral in the center of the stars and as a border. Also I bound it in the same fabric. I had to use straight seams as diagonal seams would have made the binding too short. It was ok , though.

Here is the center star and you can see the light triangle in the lower left corner almost disappears. That happens with scrappy sometimes. 

I quilted this table runner myself. That is not usual for me, but all my go-to long armers are in my group and this challenge is supposed to be a secret until I had to get brave and do it!

I quilted concentric squares in the center of each of the stars, using my walking foot and the edge of it as a guide. Sometimes it went wonky. Then I echo quilted in the background triangles and corner squares.  I did a wavy serpentine stitch ( the zig zag on my Bernina, as wide as it would go and stitch length to 3 blips longer than the #3 on the screen) in the sashing. 

You can see the serpentine stitch a little better on the backing. The backing is also from my stash. The border was just channel stitched around and around, using the edge of my walking foot as a guide. 

I am excited to have it done, early no less!!  But don't tell anyone, OK?  None of my friends know I have a blog, so that is not a problem.

I am linking this post up with Crazy Mom Quilts' Finish It Up Friday and also Finished or Not at Busy Hands Quilts

Until next time, 
Stay Busy and Stay Happy