Tuesday, May 30, 2017

I Decided On My Next Quilt Project

   I finally decided on my next long term quilt project.  It will be a slow hand sewing project making little hexagons with English paper piecing.  I'm going to make another Grandmother's Flower Garden ("GFG"), but this time I want to make the quilt more traditional.  I will be using three fabrics for my flowers.  The center will be yellow, of course, and the two rows of petals will be orange and pink.  Here are the fabrics I purchased from Fabric.com this week for this project.

     Here is the green I found for path which I think is perfect.  It's a Kona cotton in the colorway Pond.  I can't wait to get started.

    Here's a link to the scrappy GFG I made last year.  It was totally different from a traditional GFG.  I don't know what I was thinking of when I bought the dark green and greyish fabric for this.  I should have made the flowers with two rows of petals and then used a lighter green for the path, but I made only one row of petals then I used that concrete color before the dark green path.  It it unusual to say the least.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

String Blocks Make A Great Big Dog Bed for McPherson

    I had to make a dog bed for my daughter's little Cairn Terrier, McPherson.  She rescued him in January and he has been a great addition to her life.

     I made him a scrappy bed a couple of months ago with some 3" scraps I needed to get rid of and he loves that bed.  No picture of that effort, sorry, but here's a picture of McPherson.  Isn't he the cutest?  He is 17 pounds of squirrel hunting craziness.

   Since his first scrappy bed lives in the great room area, McPherson needs another bed for the bedroom.  I had some string blocks all ready for this project.  I put 9 of my 10" square string blocks together, sewed that top onto a stabilizing piece of fabric, added a backing pieced together from three fat quarters, stuffed it with three bags of fiberfill and hand sewed the open end.  Done.

Friday, May 12, 2017

Embroidery Machine Fun

   I almost forgot to tell about the machine embroidery adventure I had last weekend.  I have a Brother PE770 Embroidery Machine that my daughter gave me as a birthday present in 2014.  It was supposed to be a machine we both would use but it lives at my house so I use it more.  I set it up and use it about 3 or 4 times a year for making hanging dishtowels, embroideries to add to tote bags or to frame, and monogrammed linen napkins, I would love to play with a multi-needle machine someday.
   Back in January I had an idea for dear daughter to make her Father some embroidered toilet paper for Father's Day.  Dear daughter picked the design and I purchased it.  We got together last Saturday to embroider toilet paper.

    I did a sample stitch out of the design on Friday night on a plain piece of white cotton fabric with stabilizer.  It worked great and took me about 40 minutes from set up to final stitch.

     On Saturday we had a few problems and the project took a lot longer than anticipated.  I don't think my machine is built to embroider toilet paper because when we tried to embroider on the toilet paper the machine jammed up and it would eat the toilet paper and the stabilizer.  

     We ended up with three designs stitched out on regular white muslin which dear daughter will wrap around toilet paper rolls.  The three designs took us almost 5 hours including an hour of that time taken to go to Walmart to get the fabric.

       It was a fun project and a real learning experience.  Dear daughter got a chance to really work with the machine up close for the first time since we have had it.

    Here is a picture of the design we stitched out.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Replacement Irish Chain

    I had to make a replacement Irish Chain for myself.  I invited a friend to come over and shop my quilts last month.  She fell in love with my favorite Irish Chain that I made with Tanya Whelan rose fabrics.

     This is the front of the original Irish Chain that I made for myself a few years ago.

This is the back.

  The original quilt was a little small but I loved the fabrics I used in it.  My friend took it home with my love and I tried to forget the quilt, but I knew I wouldn't be happy until I made a replacement.  Not a carbon copy but an Irish Chain using fabrics I love.  I used a green and pink floral for my nine patch blocks and the backing/binding fabric is a lovely light green with tiny bees all over it.  The fabrics are great and I even made the quilt a little larger than the original.  So my replacement Irish Chain is finished.

        I don't have any more quilts that I want to make, so I'm going to continue making string quilt blocks for more string quilts.  I have two big boxes with lots of scrap strips from my stash.   I make my tops with 49 blocks which I think make a good size top.  I make an additional 7 blocks to piece the backing.  So each quilts needs 56 string blocks.  I've been using full size paper towels which measure 10.4" x 11" which I cut down to 10" after I sew my strips on.  Using 10" blocks is so much fun for me.  I love the 7 block rows x 7 rows and this layout makes it easy to line up my backing fabric with the row of blocks in the center.  I line that row up with the fourth row of the top and that centers my back with my top really nicely.   The paper towel rolls have 96 sheets in them so I can  make almost two tops with one roll of paper towels.  While I'm making my string quilts, I'll be on the hunt for a great quilt pattern with some great fabric.