Sunday, May 21, 2017

Pinwheels Fly Away!

In what was probably the worst kept secret ever, the Digital Pinwheels quilt will be flying to my DIL in the City of Angels in California tomorrow. 

The quilt is really pretty, and I'm happy I stuck with it. It's a perfect traditional, yet not traditional quilt. In fact, showing it off to my colleagues at work, MJ said, "This is very unusual for you Lynne. You actually have several blocks that are exactly the same."

That made me laugh. She was right!

Taking Beauty Shots yesterday, I did what I usually do, find cool places to show off the quilt. The photo above was of my back entry, so no big deal there,

but it wasn't until I scratched myself on the brush surrounding this tree, that I looked down and realized I was in a perfect breeding ground for ticks (dry leaves, out of sunlight.). I gathered up the quilt, and quickly moved to another location. 

As I spread the quilt out, I brushed away a large tick that had attached itself to the quilt. I stopped what I was doing, shook out the quilt thoroughly, inspected it, and went home, where I stripped and put all my clothes in the wash in hot water, then took a shower and inspected myself. I only had that scratch, no bites, but it was a wake up call. (And yes, the next thing in the wash was the quilt.)

Note to self: Stay the hell out of the woods. No beauty shot is worth what I went through two years ago, when I had Lyme Disease.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Digital Pinwheels Finish!

Woo Hoo! The Digital Pinwheels quilt is finished.

The backing is made from some of the leftover blocks and fabrics from my stash.  Can't wait to take this out into the real world for the "beauty shots."

This quilt is spoken for.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Getting There....

After dinner last night I sat down and worked on the binding of the digital pinwheels quilt. I have not completed two sides and 2/3 of the third side. I really like this quilt.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Binding the Digital Pinwheels

I've sewn the binding down on 1-1/2 sides of the digital pinwheels quilt. The quilt is a riff on a twelve tone color wheel***, and each of the twelve tones has its own WOW (white on white) background.

Sometimes the painted whites are very thick and stiff to sew through, like these dots on the Yellow Green block. It can be slow going.  As you can see, I am using another WOW for the binding. With the square shapes on the binding echoing the square blocks on this square quilt, I thought it was an appropriate choice.

The Digital Pinwheel design is from the book "Modern Neutrals" by Amy Ellis.

You can read more about the quilt here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here, and here.

***A twelve tone color wheel is comprised of these hues: Red, Red Violet, Violet, Blue Violet, Blue, Blue Green, Green, Yellow Green, Yellow, Yellow Orange, Orange, Red Orange.

Monday, May 15, 2017


This is my colleague, MJ. Last Friday she walked by and I stopped dead in my tracks. "MJ," I called after her, "come back!"

MJ is very quiet and unobtrusive, "Why? What for?" she asked, turning.

"I wanna take your picture! I love those colors you're wearing! "

"Don't show my face."

"Uh, OK."

So she turned, and brought her hands together. I took the photo above.

"So why do you want to take a picture of what I'm wearing? You never wear brown."

"No, but I tell my blog readers that inspiration is all around them, and there's a beautiful quilt in the colors you're wearing."

Like I keep saying, Inspiration is everywhere around you. You just have to pay attention to see it.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Whatzit? The Answer!

When I opened the box I found another, smaller box, nestled in a bed of styrofoam peanuts.

Inside was this decidedly underwhelming oddly shaped vase-ish thing.

"MOM!" I heard my son shout from the iPad, "Put some kitchen utensils in it..."

"Now put your iPad in that groove!"

OH!!!!! Now I get it. And while it will be great for using in the kitchen, I'll use it even more to prop up my iPad whenever I FaceTime with my son. It holds the iPad up at just the right angle!

Thanks Kids!

Happy Mother's Day!

The mail in my development is left at the "Mail House" and packages are left in the main office. If I get a package, a note is left in my box alerting me.  Usually I know what's coming, but last week I found a "You have a package at the office" note in my box. I hadn't ordered anything.  What could it be?

Since I wasn't expecting anything, I didn't know what size package to look for. I was surprised to find a large box.

I laughed when I saw the "DO NOT OPEN UNTIL MOTHER'S DAY" written on the top.


It's from a ceramics studio in Pennsylvania, and had an "Etsy" label. So I brought it in the house and put it in the office.  It wasn't heavy, and I don't think what's inside it is very big, but we'll see.

I told my friend Daniela about it and she exclaimed "And you didn't open it? I would have opened it right away"

Well, I didn't. I've had it here a week now, and I'll open it while FaceTiming my son and DIL later today.

I'll have the full reveal later.

Happy Mother's Day!

Friday, May 12, 2017

Fruit Loops, Quilted

The first scrap slab triangle quilt, Fruit Loops, has been quilted. I love the zig zag quilting! It's so much fun. I'll be finishing this up over the next few days. I know I'll have fun taking this out for beauty shots given the colors are very spring-like.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Digital Pinwheels Again, Again.

The Digital Pinwheels quilt I started in 2013 and assembled the top in 2015 has finally been quilted, now in 2017. It's been my oldest UFO, and now I will be adding the binding. This will have a white binding.

I love how the swirls contrast with the rectilinear shapes of the blocks.

Here's the flimsy. It is a riff on the the twelve-tone color wheel. This quilt is about 72" square.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

One Row At A Time

Sewing blocks to a quilt together is tough enough but when they have lots of bias edges, it's a lot trickier, so when I've got a row sewn I lay it out on the floor, and then add it to the rest. If it's on the floor, it won't stretch the bias edges.

Since the rows of blocks are long diagonals, I need the stepladder to reach the top. I am eager to get this one sewn up, since I have some ideas about how to make the dark version successful, and I can't wait to play with those.

Of course, when I noticed this:

I could do nothing but sigh. It will have to come out, and I will have to fix it.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Baby Birds!

It's always so much fun to get letters from readers who've I've inspired. Last week I received a lovely email from Pam in Ohio who had bought my bird tutorial.

"I bought your pattern a couple months ago, and frankly, was terrified to start. Once I did, it was so well-written that I proceeded to make 12 birds in 2 days! I had an assortment of sizes so I added strips and trimmed them each to 9.5" square. I bordered them with 2" cut sized strips. All my  birds are chubby as this is a baby quilt, and I wanted baby birds. The quilt finished at about 46" x 58". I hope you enjoy seeing what customers create from your pattern."

WOW! What can I say, but thank you Pam for the compliment and the photo. YES! I love hearing from you. 

Pam included a photo of the quilt she made. Fun, fun, fun!

Monday, May 8, 2017

Jewel Box

Once I had the arrangement of the large diamonds worked out, I removed the small four patch diamonds, and reviewed the placement of the medium diamonds. I moved some around, but not that many. Then I put the four patches back. I wanted to put them where they would contrast with the big diamonds. I'm pretty happy with this layout, and I'll start sewing it up.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

It's The Little Things

Actually, in this case, it's the big diamonds. They needed some moving around. You'll have to look carefully, but in these photos, the only things that move are the large diamonds.

 So what did I do? In the first photo I didn't like the way the darker diamonds were too close together and too much at the bottom, so I shifted them. But I also don't like them in the same row or column so I had to keep them apart from each other. I also wanted them distributed throughout the quilt.

Since I place the medium sized diamonds and the four patch diamonds next to the appropriate large diamonds, I will now go back and play a bit with those. Heh.

OK, I lied. Well, I didn't mean LIE, but when I went into the studio and looked at it again, I moved three big diamonds.

The finish line is in sight.

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Getting There

Do you have any idea how long these four patch diamond blocks take to make? They are all I did Tuesday and Wednesday evenings.

I really need them to help work out the design.

This is where I was before I went to bed on Friday night. It's getting closer, but it's not quite there yet.

And I think I might have solved the puzzle of the dark ones.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Mumbo Jumbo

Monday night I worked on those dark diamonds. I tried medium range medium sized diamonds, I tried darkish fabrics, but the more I worked the less clear it became. Finally I looked at it and I thought to myself, "Lynne, you're making sludge. You keep telling your students not to make areas that are too dark, and that's what you have. It's ugly. Time to regroup." Yeah, I probably should have taken some pictures, but...

So I dug through my stash and found lighter (pinker!) big prints and cut and arranged those diamonds on the design wall. I really really like those remaining dark fabrics, and if they have to go, they'll go, but right now I'm leaving them there.

I started cutting more lighter middle sized diamonds, and put them up with the darker diamonds from the first version. I was pretty sure the darker, more boring ones had to go.

So I replaced them with generally lighter prints.

This is what I had when I decided it was time to pack it in for the night. I'm not quite convinced this is the way to go either, but I'll know for sure once I start adding the little diamonds that will fill in the empty spaces in the layout above.

That'll happen later, and maybe not till this weekend. I have a lot of stuff going on between now and then. And I have to tell you about a wonderful email I got from Pam.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Happy Anniversary!

 Happy Third Anniversary to my DS and DIL!

This photo, of the happy couple, my niece and nephew (and me on the right) is a selfie I took. It's one of the best photos of the day. So keep taking selfies folks (just be safe doing it.)

This was taken in March when I was visiting.

In the wonderful world of coincidence and serendipity, this is also the anniversary of my best pal Julie and her husband Larry!

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Dark Diamonds

You all see quilts that I make, and it's easy to think that ideas I have always work out, that I get from point "A" to point "B" in a very direct way.

Not always. Regular readers know that. So it will be with this idea, which I haven't totally worked out yet, but I know there's a good quilt in here somewhere. I just haven't found it yet.

I used big diamonds like this in a quilt I made for my niece, Diamond Jubilee. I wondered what a dark version of that quilt would look like, so now is my chance.

Here I've arranged the big diamonds.

These are the bright colors I have chosen for the vertical rows of diamonds in the quilt.

 Hmm. This isn't quite the effect I had in my head.

Yeah, this isn't working.

I think these four patch diamonds are the problem. If I am going to flip the values on the quilt, the line of diamonds has to be dark, not light.

I think.

We'll see.

Monday, May 1, 2017

Barns @ Quilted Threads

My barn quilts are on display at Quilted Threads. You can see them behind one of the cutting counters.

This is Quilted Threads's building. The shop is toward the front (painted white). You can see their barn at the back. You can also see the barn across the street that was the inspiration for my barn block. The ladies at QT tell me that customers come in the shop, see my barn blocks and recognize the barn across the street.

That is SO COOL!

Julie Sefton's quilt, See Rock City, will be on display at Quilted Threads for most of the summer.* I strongly urge you to take a trip to Henniker NH to see the quilt.

There are several reasons you should do this: First, Julie's quilt is "spectacular" according to QT's owner, Becky. Secondly, the shop itself is To-Die-For. The lighting is all color-corrected natural light, so everything looks the way it should and there are no dark corners. Third, Henniker is the vision of a typical New England town and it's a beautiful destination for a day trip, especially in summer. Lastly, Daniel's is a great place for lunch. You can sit outside on the deck overlooking the river.

*I said "most" of the summer, and I meant it. The quilt is big, so it may be a day or two before Becky and the staff find the best place to display the quilt. It's a giant, 80" wide by 100" tall, so it's not an easy task. AND Julie has asked be to take some beauty shots of the quilt, so I'll be borrowing it for a week sometime to do that.

BTW, the two build a barn classes I am teaching at QT are on June 10 and July 22. The June 10 class is filled, so look to July 22. If and when that class fills, we'll have a third date in September.