Wednesday, March 29, 2017

March projects and Finishes

It's nearly the end of March,  and I have some finishes!  I also made progress on a few other projects this month.   I'm linking to Judy's blog... patchworktimes.  Check it out to see what everyone else is working on

First, the finishes.... 

It wasn't my March UFO,  but It is a completion...  This is on my 2017 UFO challenge list. 

This quilt had it's beginnings as a medallion for a Round Robin I was involved in with some internet friends in 2010.   It came home to me in August of 2010.  It had some issues with laying flat,  and I wanted it to be bigger.  So it got folded up and placed in my UFO pile, waiting for inspiration and the patience to work on it.  Now we fast forward to the present.  

As I was sorting out my UFOs in early January,  this one  came to my attention once again.   I really do love the homespun fabrics and overall design elements my friends added as they each worked on it.   I decided that even though it wasn't my March number,  that if I was going to finish it this year, I had some work to do to address the fact that it was not square, and did not lay or hang straight.    I took a course of action to fix it, and then once it was to my satisfaction,  I decided it needed one more border.    I blogged about this process  at the end of February ...

"Life is Good"    3/27/2017

I worked on the border while I was at our guild retreat earlier this month and got the final border added.  When I brought it home and showed my husband the progress I had made, he mentioned that he would like it to go to our good friends, Ted and Cindy.  We have stayed at their cabin in Island Park, Idaho, which is about 15 miles from the entrance to Yellowstone Park.   Since it was out and ready to go,  I decided to go ahead and get it pinbasted and start on the quilting.   

Homespun fabrics are soft and loose,  so I decided to do ditch work, to stabilize the seams and keep them from morphing over time.    There are lots of seams in this quilt!  Many stops and starts, but it paid off.   The final results are great!  Since I wanted the quilt to be soft and cuddly,  I did not want to put too much quilting into it.    It measures 65 x 82"
Hobbs 80/20 for batting helped create the soft, snuggly effect.  

Back of  "Life is Good" 

The back was pieced with more homespuns, and the leftover four patches from the border.  Once again,  I over estimated while cutting and stitching,  but I used them all! 

WIN!  No orphan blocks were created in the making of this quilt.  

Homespun Lap Quilt  - finished! 

I also finished quilting and binding this lap quilt for our guild's "Comforting Quilts" project.  This is made with some leftover bits from my  orphan bin purge in January.   it is 46" square.   Our Guild has a need for this size for several groups who use them in pallative care units in our city.   This size of 45" approx. finished, is large enough to help cheer up a bed,  be used as a topper for extra warmth, or to be used when sitting in a chair.  It's a great way to use up leftover blocks and bits.  They will ultimately go to the families of the recipients.    

I did a simple ditch stitching on this one as well,  and added some straight lines in the two larger borders to keep it stable over time.   The backing for this was the same that I used on the Fall colored Lap I finished in February.  (With 2 yards and some creative piecing, I backed two 46" laps, and a 24" doll quilt.)    These were done with smaller pieces of batting from my batting bin, stitched together.
24" doll quilt 

This little doll quilt was 4 more orphan blocks from my bin purge.  It measures 24" square, and will go to the Toy and Joy Foundation that wraps dolls and teddy bears in quilts before giving to children for Christmas.  

My March Progress on Other Projects: 

Marble Madness:   I blogged about this quilt here in February

Marble Madness II -  Waiting for bottom zig-zag border 

At retreat this month, I got it all assembled, until I ran out of border units.  I have added the final borders.  It's been pinbasted, and is ready to start the quilting.   Since I've entered into our quilt show in early May... There is no time like the present.  I have a plan! 

Quilt of Valor:  

I have a blog post explaining the whole story here   
QOV  Stars and Geese
still needs final borders... 

Got the top assembled at the retreat,  but the border fabric had been given to me, and I decided to wait until I could pre-wash it at home prior to adding the final borders.   The fabric is now pre-washed and waiting....   The color catchers were very dark, so I am glad I made that decision.  This quilt has a lot of white space. 

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Quilt of Valor - Stars and Geese

I have a soft spot in my heart for Veterans.  (I've been married to one for 31 years.)  The Quilt of Valor Foundation has a mission to wrap each veteran who has been "touched by war" in a quilt.  

Our guild has a group that works on Quilts of Valor once a month, but since I still work, I am unable to go to most of the work sessions.   I usually have at least one QOV project going here at home.   I finished one around New Years, and needed to start something new.   During my "orphan block" purge,  I came across some blocks that had originally been meant for a different Quilt of Valor....  but ultimately did not make it into that particular quilt.  

Here is the story:  

I belong to an internet group that made blocks for QOV for recipients who were personal referrals from members of the group.  We made approx 10 finished QOV over a period of about 3 years.   Members would sign up for the portions of the quilts that they wanted to provide.   The blocks or fabrics would be sent to a "piecer", who would piece the top... and then it would go to the "quilter", who would quilt it and then on to the person who would bind it and stitch the lable.   The last person was usually the person who would ultimately award it to the person they had nominated.   

Sometimes it would be a year, between nomination and design process,  to finished quilt, and we would often have 2 or more projects in one of the phases of completion. 

We designed a quilt for a member of the US Coast Guard using the Coast Guard Star.  

Blocks were to be sent to a member  for assembly.  This member was very active in our group, and was one of the steering members who kept the daily  up-beat banter going on our forum.    Sadly, she was  silently and valiantly fighting cancer.  Being an internet group means we all had a veil of privacy to protect us.  She had told us she was having some health issues,  but I don't think any of us knew just how progressed her illness was. 

Many of us had sent our completed stars and pieces to her for piecing, and then we got the sad news that she had passed away.    We were so sad to have lost her, that is was several weeks, before we realized that the blocks were at her house.   Knowing that her family was also missing her,  we wanted to respect their time to grieve.   It was a couple of months before I reached out to her daughter.  "If you should find some red and blue stars that look similar to this while cleaning up your mom's quilting stuff, they were originally intended for a QOV...." , I wrote.  Her daughter responded, saying that neither she, nor her dad had really faced the quilting area yet, but if she found anything that resembled our project, she would forward it to me.    

We all committed to new blocks, being sent to a new person to piece this quilt, and pressed onward and upwards.   It was nearly 6 months later, that I received a package in the mail with a letter from her daughter.  She had found a large ziplock bag full of stars.  Were these the ones?    By now, we had completed the quilt that was originally planned.   In my thank you note back,  I assured her and the rest of our group, that those stars would be used in a QOV.   

The next several quilts that we started on, were designs that didn't include friendship stars, or the bright white background that these stars have.  

The cost of postage was getting prohibitive, mailing quilt parts all over the county..... and the group never was really the same once we lost this member....  one by one, many of the members left the group to join other quilting groups on other forms of social media.  

Forward to today... 

I came across these blocks and decided they would become my next QOV project.   I used my EQ design software to come up with a design that would use the parts I had received.  
This is the design I came up with.  

 I had enough just enough of the friendship stars!   I would make the larger stars and geese to  complete the top.  

At the National Quilt of Valor Sew Day on February 6th,  I completed the geese and large star blocks.  

I assembled them into the center of the top at our Guild Retreat in early March.  

Today,   the top is waiting for it's final borders.  It will finish at approx 60 x 75. 

Monday, March 27, 2017

Stash Report 3/27/2017

Here is my latest stash report. 

I'm linking with Judy Laquidara's blog 

Since my last report  on 3/12: 
  • Completed my Round Robin from 2010.   The quilting and binding are finally done!   It's new name is:  "Life is Good!".  See the whole story here....  Fabric from my stash:  7 yards. For the outside borders,  backing and binding.   I used 2 yards of Hobbs 80/20 for batting
  • Completed top for homespun lap quilt 45" square.   used scraps of Warm and natural  batting equaling approximately 1/2 yard @ 90" wide   * backing  already accounted for with previous green, gold, rust lap .. but top is 2 yards. 
  • One doll quilt 1 yard total of fabric...  and scraps of batting  the back was a scrap of the backing used on the lap top completed above.

Fabric 2017

     Fabric Used Since last report :  10  yards 
     Fabric Used year to Date: 52 5/8 yards
     Fabric Added since last report: 0 yards
     Fabric Added Year to Date: 8 yards

     Net Fabric for 2017:  Net 43 3/8 yards Used 

Batting  2017: 

     Batting used since last report: 2  yards of Hobbs 80/20 for RR quilt 

     Batting used year to date: 7 3/8 yards used from bolt ....
           PLUS  8 doll quilts, 6 laps (45" squared), and one table runner  from my
           bins of batting scraps approx 4 yards worth 
     Batting added since last report: 0 yards
     Batting added year to date:  40 yards (Jan purchase) 
     Net Batting for 2017: increase of 25 1/8  yards 

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Stash Report March 12

Here is my latest stash report. 

I'm linking with Judy Laquidara's blog 

Since my last report  on 2/26: 
  • Completed "Flurry"...  quilted, bound,  and ready to bring on the Christmas Spirit next year. Total amount of fabric used...  3 yards of  solid white background === Backing 4  1/2 yards  === binding 5/8 yard  The gift package blocks were from an exchange, so most of them did not come from my stash.  I made 6 of the 20 package blocks...  so I used approx 1/2 yard total for those.      Total fabric used, 8  5/8 yards       Batting used   1 5/8 soft and bright                   
  • I got lots done at retreat last weekend,  but since I'm not finished with any of the projects I worked on, I'll have to wait to count,  but I do have a top 1/2 quilted on the machine right now, so progress is being made!  

Fabric 2017

     Fabric Used Since last report : 8 5/8  yards 
     Fabric Used year to Date: 42 5/8 yards
     Fabric Added since last report: 0 yards
     Fabric Added Year to Date: 8 yards
     Net Fabric  as of last report:  8 5/8 yards used

     Net Fabric for 2017:  Net 34 5/8 yards Used 

Batting  2017: 

     Batting used since last report:  1 5/8 yards soft and bright

     Batting used year to date: 5 3/8 yards used from bolt PLUS  7 doll quilts, 5 laps (45" squared), and one table runner  from my bins of batting scraps approx 3 1/2 yards worth 
     Batting added since last report: 0 yards
     Batting added year to date:  40 yards (Jan purchase) 
     Net Batting as of last report:  - 0 yard 
     Net Batting for 2017: increase of 27 1/8  yards 

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

February UFO Complete!


It's complete!   I was only one day late, getting the binding done on "Flurry".  This was my #9 quilt on my UFO list,  which was the number drawn for February over on Judy Laquidera's blog.  You can check it out more on Judy's blog, by clicking here.

We were challenged to pick 12 Unfinished projects that we wanted to finish this year.... they were posted and numbered by myself.... but Judy draws a number every month, so we work on them in random order.   

I was part of a block exchange back in the fall of 2015 with 7 internet friends.  We each made 2 "gift" blocks for each of the participants.  I wanted my quilt a bit longer, so I added 4 more blocks.   

I laid out the completed blocks and planned my scrappy border while at our guild's retreat last fall.   It feels good to get another quilt off of my "NEEDS TO BE QUILTED" list.  

I chose to do a loose wavy vertical line type of free motion quilting on this, for an informal, modern look.  This is one I'm keeping to use on the back of the sofa for the Holidays.    It finished at 57 x 75".  

The number that Judy picked for March is #5... which is my "Roll Roll, Cotton Boll",  a mystery by Bonnie Hunter.  The top is pieced,  just needs to be Quilted...  (sounds like a familiar story).