Thursday, December 31, 2015

it's here!

where DID 2015 go?  counting my blessings as 2016 arrives and hoping for another jam-packed year of sewing and quilty fun!  for auld lang syne!

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

snow day = sew day

it couldn't last, meaning no snow on the ground, have about 4" here, which isn't much but it's more that it heralds the beginning of real winter that is disheartening.  but a month's reprieve is way better than none, and what could be nicer than a 60-degree christmas!  snowy days mean sewing and this was the result....the 5 blocks of FWS that were waiting...


haven't pulled the papers yet but they are done.  this group is on hiatus until jan 6th so next up will be the start of the 365 challenge.  and my UFO list for 2016 is finalized so guess i'm ready for it to begin.  so blessed to see the start of another year!

Sunday, December 27, 2015

UFO not!


did get this little piece finished just this morning, so off the list it goes....going to try and eliminate just one more small flimsy from the list. with not much else scheduled and bad weather finally coming (meaning snow), should be able to manage one more finish.  otherwise working on FWS blocks and some usual tasks. only 5 days to the start of the 365 challenge and trying to avoid that tiny voice in my head that this is simply too big a project for somebody in a state of flux.  trouble is, really want to take it on but would feel more confident if things were a bit more stable and all the stash was organized and at hand.  nevertheless, going to persevere and see what happens....can always abandon for a later date....meanwhile, gotta corral my warm clothes and get ready for real winter....yeeeccchh!

Saturday, December 26, 2015

great sale-ing day!

although with temps near 60, it was almost a day for the on-the-water kind of sailing, but NH vic and i opted for the retail kind....the sun and fresh air was heavenly!  first up?  footprints in rochester, NH...


just inside the door 25+ bolts of kim diehl's new fabric line....and so difficult to choose but had to select only 4 quarter yards....lovely colors!   then it was our fave marden's!


christmas fabrics half price and found a few neutrals as well....total for this 2 yards was $4....really, only four dollars!  got a half yard of the red print, quarters on all the others.   then back to vic's for a delish lunch of turkey leftovers, some conversation and then hit the road.  due to holiday scheduling, have a couple of saturdays off for a change....made me feel almost human again! 

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

a christmas wish....




for dreams to be realized, for prayers answered, for hungry to be full, for cold to have warmth, for homeless to be housed, for jobless to work, for children to be safe and loved, for hope to endure, for health restored, for the aged and infirmed to have comfort and safety, for my own particular needs and yours too....and that the message of the manger will live in my heart always.....merry christmas!

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

and it's done!

not an official UFO finish by stashbuster guidelines, but it's done and won't be on the 2016 UFO list..


wasn't sure about this but i do like how it turned out, has a sort of primitive feel...glad i tea-dyed to tone down the white background.  now can i rack up another finish before january?  hope so....and since the new year is just over a week away, have updated my UFO list for 2016...can i finish them all?  watch this space!

Sunday, December 20, 2015

isn't it always...

about the FABRIC????  it explains why most quilters i know have plenty on hand....to make sure the "right" fabric can be at the ready when needed....somebody gifted me this lovely jo morton blue stripe last summer and it was just what this little wallhanging called for to finish it off...


the bright white was too bright, and the tea-dying was only so-so i thought, but now with this stripe for binding, just right i think.   toyed with the idea of a border but was afraid it might detract from the hearts.   will finish up today.  hoping i can finish up a couple more small projects before the end of the year as well...oh yeah, with this binding am really liking this little piece now.  so reason for large stash now justified....i'm a happy quilter! 

Thursday, December 17, 2015

TBT

last week at the laundromat, was browsing thru their collection of vintage magazines and stumbled onto this, a definite cringe moment for someone in the news of late....


i am NOT taking any sides in this issue, rather feel disappointed (and forewarned) recalling some wisdom about sins committed in secret...can you read it?  about halfway down the page, a quote from bill cosby, "a word to the wise ain't necessary; it's the stupid ones who need the advice."  this from the april 2004 issue of woman's day....so sad indeed...cannot imagine the conversations that transpire in that household.  *** and why no sewing projects you ask?  shhhh, finishing up some secret christmas sewing, my only handmade gift this year and it's almost done, which is good....LOL

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

hexie progress

this now and then project is progressing albeit slowly...


the main colors of the quilt are blue, pink and brown, so had to go back to the stash and pull fabrics in those colors.  at about 190 rosettes, it's a long way from being a flimsy but it's a nice travel project to have ongoing.  and i took vic's advice and am using scrappy rather than plain muslin for the connector sections.  they look like they will work out okay....finishing up my one holiday sewing project today and tomorrow; lists are made and all is in order for a very low key holiday. 

Friday, December 11, 2015

ten little blocks....

in 2 straight lines.....with only 2 blocks to go, it's almost time to pack up the old viking for a christmas rest.  these are sooo cute!  thinking of setting them vertically single file and finish as a bell pull?  or maybe finish them individually and string horizontally in a banner, with some ho-ho-ho interspersed?  plenty of ideas...


noticed i switched out the pink ironing board for a green in favor of the season, but i also wanted to audition the color for possible background....and will have to do over the friendship star bottom row far right as the print washes out the points....love how the camera highlights blocks gone wrong!   in the meantime, basking in 40-50 degree weather with no flakes in sight...that's MY kind of winter, oh yes!

Thursday, December 10, 2015

shameless promotion

having withdrawal from girl scout thin mint cookies?  didn't get your box(es) this year?  have no fear, trader joe's has put these on their shelves, probably just for Christmas but hey, better than nothing!  and the price is good too, a mere $2.99 at my local store.  and get this, they TASTE just like the girl scout cookies! 

no, i don't get any free boxes for posting this (too bad too, i say), just a public service for those of you who appreciate the finer things in life.  ***  a recent free concert took us to a local church built c. 1769 with royal flooring, meaning wide and some up to 14" from trees formerly owned by king george.  the church is on the national register and other preserved details include now-electrified candle chandeliers and wall sconces, plain wood pews with doors and no parking lot or driveway either....it's preserved with period paint and those long shutters too....here is a pic...no doubt there are others dotted throughout the northeast...the entertainment was "downeast brass quintet" and one of the group remarked that last year they walked through snow to get in, but this year only green grass...thank you climate change!


and before you ask, yes there IS sewing happening to be shown another day....

Monday, December 7, 2015

happee swappee....

these arrived today, quite timely as it has been a weekend of concern and long day at work today...i went back temp 2 days per week for not just financial but also mental health reasons.  my boss has been very accommodating, allowing me to keep my hours down to remain qualified for senior housing...but here are the blocks received in the swap...aren't they terrific?


the thing that ALWAYS surprises me is how many repro fabrics i have never seen before...there are many in just these few blocks.  my stash is NOT minuscule by any stretch, but again, many fabrics are new to me.  can't imagine how i missed seeing them before, given the amount of time i've spent on fabric websites and in quilt shops.  ***  keeping up with the 12 days of Christmas and FWS, so more photos to show another day.  *** and those of you who commented?  many thanks...a positive outcome so prayers were answered. 

Sunday, December 6, 2015

special request

a family member is in need today...if you are a praying person, would appreciate sending one now....no details needed, God knows all...

Friday, December 4, 2015

before and after

remember the applique hearts and the stark white background print?


well, it's been tea-dyed and basted and the quilting has begun....no fancy designs, just outline etc.  and in case you don't notice the difference, here's a shot of the before and after...


so it did tone it down quite a bit.  this is my first tea-dye effort and not entirely sure i did it right, although did take a glimpse of the directions on a you-tube video.  now to find something for a binding.  not in love with it but perhaps with time it'll become more endearing.  a good idea gone wrong maybe?  we'll see.....can always remove the hearts and start over.  in the meantime, FWS continues and some holiday sewing as well.  december marches on and snow is getting closer but none yet.  keeping fingers crossed....

Thursday, December 3, 2015

S-M-L and scrappy

first up, want to thank all who take time to peruse and comment on my blog.  although i don't reply to every comment, please do know i am thankful and appreciative of your comments and kind words. 

wednesday was serendipity sewing day, just sewed up a bunch of things.  right now my quilty/sewing space is minuscule and the stash is stored in bags, so it is a chore to sit down and sew or even find works in progress but where there's a will.....big is "ava" for the FWS, medium is a little churn dash block i wanted to try and little is another "12 days" block


and here are more scrappy 9-patch blocks from fabrics gifted to me this year....i need 70 of these in all, not sure exactly how many are done, but have the fabric for alternating squares and border.  once more horizontal room is available, should have it to the flimsy stage...this is a donation quilt to honor all of those who so kindly shared their stash with me....


that's all folks!

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

on the first day....

of Christmas....temecula quilts started a new sew-along for only 12 days of course...and where summer sampler blocks were 4" finished, these are going to be (i think) 2.5" finished....pretty small for these chunky, short fingers but planning to persevere anyway....


the first one is really cute....nice to have these festive activities where i get to use some new christmasy fabrics!  these will be all scrappy...how fun is that?   and--dare i say--no sign of "you know what" yet (s-n-o-w), a 4-letter word if i ever saw one...

Sunday, November 29, 2015

going twice and gone....

it's the end of the "stars in a time warp" sew along with these blocks....2 cracked ice and 1 shawl print...this has been really interesting to do and have finished up with a stack of really pretty blocks, now to find the right settings...


and got up to date with the FWS....left is my resewn "patricia" block (always helps to follow the photo) and on the right is a great "grandma" block....had planned to do some more of the tiny virginia reel blocks but the day evaporated too quickly......

Saturday, November 28, 2015

friday AND saturday

yesterday combined black friday shopping and small business saturday with a quick trip to busy thimble, my favorite reproduction quilt shop.  picked up latest issue of "quiltmania" plus a gorgeous print suitable for some broderie perse a la di ford perhaps? 


the black is a margo krager "polychrome" and the blue/white print is a cracked ice for the last week of stars...a brief respite until the 365 challenge starts with farmer's wife sewing along continuing.  other than some christmas prints at joann's, that was the total shopping haul.  spent plenty of time online drooling at terrific sales on moda FQ bundles though, but passed them by. 


today just relaxing hoping to ward off a cold, hoping to sew on sunday with bonnie and quilt-cam and enjoy thanksgiving dinner part 2....

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

it's turkey time!

counting my many blessings this year as always and i'm....


(even though we *might* be eating chicken!)

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

sale!

sauder's recent sale offered some pretty kim diehl fabrics....love 'em but way too many from which to choose at regular retail prices, but a sale?  a few 1/4 yards added to my stash....






and 2 more FWS blocks done...patricia and patience....pinned down as papers not yet removed





and turkey day -2....small but delish dinner planned with most of usual items...our norman rockwell, big family dinner is of bygone days, but enjoyed nonetheless....

Monday, November 23, 2015

swappin' stars....

first, thanks to those of you who told me about your 11/22 experiences...enjoyed reading them! 

over at randy's blog, she is having a stars swap, yes 6.5" stars, same size as barbara brackman's sew-along.  just happened to have fabrics on hand and rustled up 15 to swap.  will definitely have enough star blocks to make a couple of flimsies at this rate.


all set to meet mr. postman today...and yesterday made my "sara" block for the FWS...


also been doing a bit of secret sewing for christmas, so photos on hold until later....

Sunday, November 22, 2015

where were you?


for those of a "certain" age, today's date will forever be defined as an american tragedy.  i was in 9th grade; we lived in norwich, connecticut; nothing on television for 4 days except dirge music, haunting black and white news reports and still photos.  the day it happened, my friend linda and i were walking home from school thru downtown, looking at store windows and thinking of christmas. a TV was on in an appliance store, and we just stood outside watching, transfixed, realizing the unbelievable, an ordinary day forever changed, much like 9/11, wondering how such a thing could happen.  how innocent we were in light of daily events now.  life has changed in so many ways, and in so many not for the better.  or was it just the naivete of youth?   some of both no doubt.....where were YOU that day?

Thursday, November 19, 2015

going once....

delighted to find 2 definite and 1 sorta coral prints in my temporary stash, and one was even CORAL colored.  two more weeks after this one and "stars" will be history. did find one provincial type in the stash as well...



so blessed to have a "shop" of fabric and ideas--not to mention the internet--for inspiration and sewing pleasure!

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

nickel fun

at the library last week picked up a couple of books that had some fun projects; one of them was this


that had lots of 3" foundation patterns in the back, most based on the log cabin.  great ideas for little projects that don't bust much stash but are quick and cute.  after tracing some 3" reel blocks that caught my eye, pulled out some mod nickels in bright pinks that have been on my mind....


that became these....little virginia reel blocks for a small quilt.  managed to get 2 done in less than half an hour, each one using up a nickel with a small strip left that would work for string piecing.


the stripe is a marden's find, a low volume oxford cotton from robert kaufman; pattern calls for 24 of these so a bit more time and a doll quilt should materialize.  these bright colors a nice change from civil wars, although will be starting another project with them soon.  now to check on this week's stars fabric....closing in on the end of this sew along and it has been fun indeed!


Monday, November 16, 2015

hexie update...

this little (for now) project only gets attention now and then, but coming along albeit slowly.  some days (like today) i just start and get into a rhythm and get a lot done; other days not so much.  there are a lot more little hexies basted but not sewn together yet....


looking good so far i think... on one i've started with the connector hexies in neutrals, but can't tell if the original was done in plain muslin or not.  thinking will try both before doing more.  and the next FWS block has been posted and i'm ready for it, now that i fixed the too-big one...i had one rosette done in reds but took them out as the photo didn't show any reds.  ***  the cold is creeping in a day at a time, a bit delayed but inevitable.  mom is busy knitting scarves and mittens for anyone who might need them...we are blessed!


Friday, November 13, 2015

last rose?

it was a fabulous fall day and a trip to the coast was on the agenda.  the tide was coming in and crashing over the rocks.  the sun was bright and warm despite a cool wind hinting of days to come.  this tough bloom was spied hanging on...



somebody had hauled in their buoys and pots for the winter ahead....



not far away, a construction crew was still busy on a beautiful new home facing the ocean....a real showstopper with a very high price tag no doubt.   on tonight's agenda is the "nancy" redo and probably some hand sewing, but was worth it to escape a bit and enjoy the bonus weather...

Thursday, November 12, 2015

aimee and nancy

2 more blocks in the farmer's wife SA are done.  before starting, was not ecstatic with fabric choices; was limited to what was on hand, but with a grocery bag full of coordinates am finding lots of pretty combinations.  and yes, nancy is a bit larger due to the printer setting that was at 100% whereas all others were printed at 93%, so it's a redo but same fabrics.


another stack of hexie units have been cut and stuffed into the busy box...now off to choose today's sewing projects (after nancy gets fixed of course!)....

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

from every mountainside....

this was posted on market basket's facebook page and it is so moving...


so proud to be a descendant and daughter of veterans who fought so bravely...

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

a 37-year-old discovery...

my faithful friend, the old viking, has been with me for 37 years since she was brand spanking new.  it was an impulse purchase by my ex who was NOT known for such, unless he had motivation--i mean guilt.  he could outdo the most penny-pinching of yankees, unless he passed a liquor store, then all bets were off.  and i've been quilting now since 1979, hand quilting, which is what i really enjoy.  last night, though, giving the old girl another look, discovered this button...

it's the little one just above the magnetic poetry magnet....and guess what it does....yep,


LOWERS the feed dog...cannot recall if i knew this at all in the past 37 years, but since discovering this feature, thinking i might try my hand at some free form machine quilting.  and why not? the guide thingie is around someplace, too.....on small things that need to get finished at first, and probably not for my big quilts because i do love hand quilting, but it might knock off some of my UFOs sooner rather than later.  i knew i loved this machine....my first was a $99 universal basic machine that the ex also bought for me, but brand new this baby was $700, a big step up from the universal.  i'm guessing he did something really wrong for me to get this big ticket item--or it was in 1978.  she has some blemishes and has had a few repairs after being in cold storage for too long, but still runs like new.  now in her dotage, she gets treated gently as parts are hard to find, hoping she keeps on keeping on so we can have lots more fun in the days ahead!

Sunday, November 8, 2015

not nip and tuck but....

a nibble and a tucker!  followed along with pam buda's mini-mystery sewalong "tucker" and made this, and have just the ideal place for it (after backing/binding).  will forego batting as its home will be under a lamp on a narrow table.

as for the nibble....


darks, mediums and lights....have a sun-derful day!

Friday, November 6, 2015

did someone say....

49 days to christmas?  well, maybe next year this will be ready for santa...


and "variegated threads" is done and up, hanging in mom's apartment....loving those mod fabrics!


more spool blocks are in the storage, in civil war repros of course, but i like these just as much....thank you bonnie hunter!

the latest....

marvelous milly done!
first "bite" of the 365 challenge....center square  18" i think

some new to me kaffe prints that "might" get incorporated into 365

Thursday, November 5, 2015

pesky margaret done...

FWS margaret block, now done, papers not removed but it WILL lie flat once they are taken out!

my tiny HST little quilt flimsy, ready for basting...these finish at 1.5", which is tiny for me but nowhere near the expertise of rogue quilter's tiny HSTs....she is a pro at tiny blocks and quilts....