Sunday, May 29, 2011

A Special Project

I have been wanting to make a quilt for my cousin in England who has been so helpful with my my mother's family line. We meet last May by email and she is a delightful person.  I have been tossing around the idea of a quilt for her for about 6 months.  First I thought I would make her something Southwest but decided that probably wouldn't be her style.  So I finally asked what she would like.  She told me she likes flowers but would cherish anything I made.  That made me feel good.  I remembered I had this simple little pattern and a kit with flowers.  I am thinking this is a perfect match!

I started laying out the charm squares, I was suppose to use on the charms included and kind of put lights with the medium shades.  I didn't think there was enough contrast, I like contrast.  On the border there was some white fabric to make a scalloped shape on the border, so I decided to use white in my blocks.  The results are above.  I do like it,  I used three different white backgrounds. I think it is going to be darling when it is finished. 

I am calling this quilt Fresh Picked Flowers.  I don't think she reads my quilting blog a lot, so I hope I am safe posting this here.  It's not a total surprise, she knows I am making her something.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Yo-Yo Update

Here are all the current Yo-Yos I have in all their stages of development. 10 are complete, 11 with either appliqued or tacked down centers. I don't know how many more I have to make and I am not counting. I am enjoying this project for now! I think I need some brighter Yo-Yos and some lighter ones. Designs walls sure helps with color selection.

Happy Stitching!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Traveling and Quilting Do Go Together

Last Sunday the 15th I left my home to go travel for a week to work at a go-live.  I was in a little town in Colorado. I was able to get a lot of hand sewing done.  Since I wasn't here for two weeks like I was two years I didn't borrow a sewing machine.  Here is what I did two years ago when I was in Colorado.

Ready to hand sew
That is my traveling Yo-Yo making kit.  And my cell phone to keep me up to date on email and Facebook.

What I finished in a week
I also worked on Dear Jane Blue Work.  Above are all the Yo-Yos I tacked on or appliqued on.  I made a lot of progress.  See what happens when I don't have a computer. 

In case you didn't notice I learned how to add one of my own pictures to my blogger background.  That is a picture of my Boo Swap Dear Jane.  I like showing off my work this way, and it will be different than any other blog. 

Happy Stitching!

A Special Gift

I have a special friend in Miami Florida.  I first meet her when I went to work at then Variety Children's Hospital and was asked to work in NICU one night.  Shortly after that night I transfer to the NICU & PICU.  So we have been friends for a long time.  I went to visit her in May of 2009.  The date is the link to the first of 11 post on our vacation to visit Linda in Florida.


On Friday the 13th a gift arrived for me, it was my Christmas, Birthday, Christmas & Birthday gift.  Linda started working on it after my visit two years ago.  It is really cool and I am looking forward to using it at my next quilt retreat, which may not be until next year. 

Close up of front

On the close up of the front you can see two pictures of Mr. B. and I when we were in Florida two years ago.  Linda calls this  Caribbean Memories.  So you think OK this is a nice tote bag but it is more than a tote.

Inside Front
When you open the tote it has three sides that hang down from your chair. There are different pockets on each side.  This one holds a nice size cutting mat.

A Side

This side has a place for pencils or markers, a clear zipper pocket and a large pocket for books or patterns. 

The other side
This side a pocket for a ruler and two clear zipper pockets.  She had to be careful to get those pockets going the right direction. 

Here is a close up of the label she made on inside. I really like my special gift and all the nice touches she added.  There is a luggage label on the outside shaped like a palm tree.  A flip flog shaped key ring with the Southernmost Point marker on it.  Linda knows I miss Florida.  She also included two cushions to make those uncomfortable folding chairs more comfortable. 

Thanks Linda you did a beautiful job!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Quilting Phone App

Last Saturday I was speaking with one of my quilting friends about smart phones and tables.  We were visiting at her work, a LQS. She said, "I would like to have an app for my phone when I get one".  So I am thinking this is a great idea and I pulled out my droid phone went to market and search for quilt.  Two or three apps came up and I clicked on Quilting Calculators, with a little logo of RK that matches the color scheme of the imagine below.

This is their add for iPhone, but it is out for droids also.  The app has 8 formulas and they really work.  It takes a few moments for it to load.  After it loads there is a banner screen to skip.

The formulas are:
  1. Fabric Measurement, converts into decimal form and fractional form.
  2. Backing & Batting
  3. Piece Count
  4. Pieces to the Yardage Area
  5. Binding
  6. Broader Yardage
  7. Square in a Square
  8. Set-in and Corner Triangle
After I found the app, a costumer came in who needed borders for her quilt.  I did the calculations on my phone app and my friend did them on a quilting calculator she had at the shop.  Our results matched. 

So my suggestion is download it!  I have no affiliation with this company, I am just a satisfied user.

Happy Stitching!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Remember That Charm Quilt

Well it has been sitting on my frame since February.  I wrote about it here.  My original quilting idea didn't work and I have spent months doodling trying to find the right flow of a design.  Last night I looked at it and said enough already, I am tired of looking at it on the frame, hanging there waiting. 

At the bottom
So today after work I just tackled it.  I just did my old standby of loop-de-loops.  So I finished the center and the bottom boarder.  Tomorrow I will turn it and do the two side boarders and call it done. It isn't my best work and it isn't my worst.  But I can move on.  
Waiting to be turned
It is a good thing I unwound it from the frame and checked how I did the top boarder or the bottom boarder would have been different.  I forgot to take a picture of the quilting on the top border to remind me for when I got to the bottom border. 

Happy Stitching!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Another Setting for Blue Work & Dutch Treat

Setting #2

Well I have been thinking on this on & off all day.  This is another setting I thought of a couple of years ago for the Dutch Treat blocks.  I had to redraw the block because some how I had lost the original file.  I did rearrange the blocks a little and I like this setting so far.  It also means I would do less Dutch Treat blocks.
I copied the idea from the quilt on the cover of the book The Art of Machine Piecing by Sally Collins.

Setting #3
Here is a variation of the setting!

Planning Ahead

Yesterday I decided to lay out my Dear Jane Blue Work blocks I have done and to combined them with my Dutch Treat blocks I have done.  I like the look of the two kinds of blocks mixed together.  My first setting that came to mind was a Storm of Sea setting. 

Believe me when I say this looks a lot better in EQ7 then it looks here.  I think this also looks better in my mind's eye then in EQ7.  So I am not sure now what I want to do but since I have 7 more Dutch Treat blocks to make I don't have to decide today. 
I mostly played in EQ7 this week in preparation for my class I am teaching on Saturday the 14th.  I did make more Yo-Yos but no real progress to report.

I have added a new feature to my blog on the right hand side bar you can now follow by blog by email.  When you sign up for this you will receive an email stating the blog has been updated.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

New Machine Update!

On Tuesday I took a PTO day to take a class on my new machine.  It is the first machine class I have ever taken but I decide to give it a go.  And I am glad I did.  I learned a lot of tricks and that is always good.  I was the only student so I had a 1: 1 at my speed.  After my class I came home and made a practice piece of stitches and learned some more things.

First Stitch practice
I learned I could make some smaller and larger, I need to know which direction the machine is going to go.  Some I see will need stabilizer, I didn't use any in this piece.  Notice I made notes of the sizes I used and the number of the stitch.  I didn't make all 460 stitches the machine has, I don't have that kind of time.  Now to use them some place. 

Yes it does circles!
The machine has a circle attachment and I can stitch in a circle.  I don't think I will use this a lot but I think for my Yo-Yo quilt I'll make a circle label.  There is a chart to use to measure the designs so they match up at the end but I didn't use that this time, maybe the next time.  I also noticed if I didn't pay close enough attention my fabric drifted and my circle are less then round.  But for my first time I did well! 

This has been really fun and I feel more bonded with my machine. 

I also did more Yo-Yos. I noticed the edges are getting a little frayed. I have taken them to show friends who are in rehab after surgery.  They will have to stay home now, no more traveling.

Yo-Yos 5.1.11
I also spent a lot of time working on my EQ7 Class I am teaching on May 14th.  I am hoping my new format works well.

Happy Stitching!