Thursday, April 22, 2021

Added Yellow and a Special Green!


I decided I wanted the yellow in the quilt, so I put some of the yellow blocks up semi-randomly. I have to make a lot more blocks, and I have some greens that aren't even shown here, so we shall see.

I think this picture is a lot better than the previous ones...

I had been having some trouble with my iPhone, and I was way overdue for an upgrade, but I didn't think I needed the brandy-spanking new version, so I asked our resident geek to see if he could upgrade mine to a model newer than mine. (Mine was four versions behind.) I only asked that the hard drive space be the same size as my current one, and I told him I didn't care about the color. Imagine my surprise when I opened the box to this green lovely! And the photo above was taken with the new iPhone (the new one is an 11.)

In case you were wondering where I was yesterday, I was setting up the new device. When it came time to activate it, the instructions told me to call a specific number, but I couldn't use the new phone, or the old phone to do it. WHAAAA??? I didn't HAVE another phone. So I went over to my neighbor's to do it.

It uses facial recognition to unlock it. All I have to do is hold it up and look at it, and it unlocks. Pretty weird. The new case arrives tomorrow, which is a good thing, because the thing is so damned slippery it slides out of my hands and pockets much too easily!

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Is Less More?


When I went into the studio last night and looked at what was on my design wall, I wasn't impressed. What would happen, I wondered, if I removed the yellow? I thought I might use it later in the quilt, but "for now" I wanted to see the blocks without it. Not bad. I needed to make more blocks anyway, so while my dinner roasted in the oven, I did just that.

It was looking pretty good, so I kept going. As you all know by now, even this arrangement is not final. I have a lot of fabrics I can continue to play with.

While I work on moving this idea from "Meh" to "Magnificent" it's worth mentioning a few things.

1. You should never fall in love with your idea. You may need to beat it up to get it where it should go.

2. An idea is only an idea until you make it real. And good ideas change as you work.

3. If it isn't working, or if it's stuck in a rut, "Change partners and Dance," as my prof John Hatch once said to me. Don't be afraid to "Break It, and Break It Good." What the hell, if the blocks aren't sewn together yet you can do whatever you want without any consequences.

4. Just because your friends tell you it's gorgeous doesn't mean you have to listen. If it doesn't sing FOR YOU then who cares? I remember the Selvage Fairy said to me once, "It's interesting to me that the worst thing your quilt can be is 'Nice.'" Nice is nice, but for me, it very often isn't good enough.

5. Conversely, if they tell you they don't like it, you don't have to listen to that either. Just because somebody doesn't LIKE something doesn't mean it is any good. (Read the Value of Meh; link above.)

Well that's it for me today. Time for bed.

Monday, April 19, 2021

One and One and One is Three


I did some more cutting and sewing. (Rebecca! NO TEASE!!!)

originally this had a yellow center,  but it didn't really work, so I replaced the center with green, but I didn't like where the green hit the yellow ring.

So I made a block with one yellow corner and one green one and stuck it in there.

This might work. So now I have to cut a lot of green squares, and make more blocks! 

You all know how much I hate measuring when I cut fabrics. I used two of my nifty templates that combined, end up the width I need. Cherie, this picture is for you!!!

Sunday, April 18, 2021

Green & Yellow & Flowers


I spent a lot of time Saturday cutting the creams into squares. You can see my notes above the squares. I cut 120 of them. In retrospect I think cut too many.

Then I cut some of the yellows.

Earlier in the day I bought myself some flowers. The local florist has a walk in area where customers can choose their own, and I chose these. When one of the owners stepped in to ask if I needed help, he took one look at what I held in my hand and said, "Those are spectacular!"

You know I have been dieting on the Noom diet, and after a long struggle with a plateau, I finally broke through. The flowers are a reward to myself, and a reminder that my journey is important and my success is real. They also help me to stay motivated to continue.

Saturday, April 17, 2021

More Fabric

 Rebecca left a comment on my last blog post: "... you do that lead in thing very well..." which is a kind way of saying I left you all dangling and waiting for more. That is part of it, but the other thing is that I have friends from various parts of the country who will email me if I don't post regularly. "Are you OK?" they will ask, "You haven't posted on your blog in a couple of days and I was worried about you." So, sometimes, Rebecca, I just post something quick to let everybody know I'm still around.

I really do have something pretty cool in mind for those greens and yellows I showed the other day, but I couldn't quite get started because I had a small logjam in the shape of fabric that I had bought that needed to be ironed. (Which is only partly true. You all know I will throw fabric on the floor if I need space on my worktable...)

While I was buying some of the other fabrics, I also bought these. I love the black and whites on the far right, I love the top two in the middle (the topmost one is a rainbow of colors on black) and I loved the blue teal leaves. The pink one was on sale and I liked it when it wasn't on sale, so I bought some.

I like blenders, especially pale ones, because I like to fool the eye with them. They are not always easy to find, and since usually only shop when I need something, if I see something I can use, I'll buy it. The two on the top right are WOWs, so that's a no-brainer for me, and the one on the lower right is a slightly busier blender, so that came with me.

Anybody who knows me at all won't have any trouble understanding why I bought these two. LOTS of potential here, and I am a sucker for brights on a black background. I considered the white one at the bottom as the backing for the Gardens of Our Imaginations (Asterisk) quilt, but the shop only had 3/4 yard of it, so I bought it all.

I chose this quilt backing as the backing of the asterisk quilt, but now that it is here in person I am less than thrilled. Instead I will probably use it for one of the Bananas quilts, which will be a utility quilt.

I've put my hand here so you can see the scale of this print. It really would be perfect for the Asterisk quilt, but it is a digital print, and thus more expensive than most yardage. I believe the backing and binding of a quilt is as important as the frame around a painting, so it is important to me the find just the right backing for a quilt. I'd need six yards for the backing of the asterisk quilt, and the more I thought about it, the more I felt it really WAS the right fabric, so I searched online and found it. It is on order.

By the time my readers in the US are reading this, I'll be in the studio cutting up those yellows and greens I showed you the other day, but I must warn you, I will have a knockout quilt to show you (not made by me) and I will interrupt my posts about the green and yellow quilt when the story is ready.

I PROMISE it will blow you away. I love it when my students take what I teach them and make something of their own with it. Ronda made a bird quilt, quite unlike any bird quilt I have ever seen. YOU WON'T WANT TO MISS IT!!


Oh Rebeca, THAT was a tease (aka lead in...)

Wednesday, April 14, 2021

Green & Yellow


A few weeks ago I bought these greens, and creams. I really liked the one at the top left, the cream with the green leaves and the yellow flowers. It got me thinking.

I bought some more greens and then pulled some creamish things out of my stash that would coordinate with the greens. My yellows were ok, but nothing to make noise about.

I ordered some yellows. I love these. I think they will go great with the greens I have. I have a plan for these, and I'm rather excited about it.

Monday, April 12, 2021

Second Banana


Once the Going Bananas flimsy was sewn together, I turned my attention to the remaining blocks. I had a lot of blocks with a strong light/dark contrast, so I decided to start with those.

I filled the blanks with the other blocks, trying to balance the colors.

I did a bit of tinkering, and had this. I liked it, so I pulled the blocks off the wall and started sewing them together. 

I just kept going.

Here it is all sewn together. The name was obvious. This is The Second Banana. Two flimsies in two days. W00t!

Sunday, April 11, 2021

Going Bananas


Lap quilts just don't do it for me. If I am chilly in the winter, I want more than just my feet to be warm. I want a quilt that can cover my shoulders, so a quilt 45" x 60" isn't big enough. For me 54" x 72" begins to be the right size.There simply weren't enough yellow blocks to make a quilt that size, so I tinkered.

I decided to arrange the blue blocks diagonally and then put the green ones on either side, then the yellow ones. But I didn't have enough, so I used the ones that were left over. I kept thinking I had made more blocks, but I couldn't see them anywhere. (Turned out they were underneath something, but I didn't know that until I had I had sewn the top almost all together.)

Because the orientation of the blocks was fussy, I decided to web the quilt together. 

This is when I found the other blocks - when I cleared off my ironing table to iron the flimsy. Oops. Too late now!

So here is the finished flimsy, which will be called "Going Bananas." As usual, it is prettier in real life. It will make a good car quilt. I'll make the back out of scraps too.

Now all I have to do is figure out what to do with the other blocks... LOL!

Saturday, April 10, 2021

Sixteen Bananas


Thank Cherie and Julie for the name of this blog post. My stack of strips yesterday reminded them both of bananas! I paired up my yellow strips and sewed them all up. 

Later I matched up the pairs and found mates for the pieces that didn't match. It was fun putting things together. This is ALL the yellow blocks I have. I think I have 65 or 66 sixteen patch blocks in all. Next up is to play with them and see what happens.

It was really warm yesterday. Millie spent a lot of the day out on the front porch.

Thursday, April 8, 2021

The Last Stack

I've finally cut the last four patch strips from the leftover Zebra triangles. I think all the yellow sixteen patch blocks will end up together in one quilt.

Tuesday, April 6, 2021

The Re-entry

 I had to go to the office yesterday for supplies. I chatted with a few of my coworkers and then had a conversation with the CEO and our HR person. The topic "re-entry" came up. I've had both my shots. I knew this was coming. I don't know when it will take place but I got the distinct sense it was in the planning stages. I have mixed feelings about it, so, like everything else, we will see.

I'm sewing the binding on the All Together Now quilt.


Update: I've been working from home for over a year now. It's going to be VERY interesting going back.

Sunday, April 4, 2021

More Sweet Sixteens


I've sewed up another batch of four patch strips, then I sewed the pairs into 16 patch blocks. Unlike the last batch, there aren't enough strips to make 16 patch blocks that were consistent, so in this batch I tried to pair up strip sets that would be similar to each other. 

At first glance these are consistent blocks, but when you look closer you can see the differences. I think they are kind of fun. I don't know if I will use these with the other blocks yet. I have some more blocks to break down into 4 block strips, but the ones I have left are all yellow. More "harvesting" to come!

Saturday, April 3, 2021

April Quilts


The table quilt for April is Julie's Hidden Potential quilt. She made it out of my leftover dud letters and other bits and bobs. April is Spring, and Spring is Green.

The quilt on the bed is Jigsaw Puzzle, a Slashed Squares quilt made of "mini" blocks. These blocks are 7" square, and the quilt is made from fabrics in my stash. They weren't "scraps" but my rule for this quilt was not to cut into yardage from the fabric in my big stash. The Slashed Squares quilt is a really easy quilt that has a lot of potential.

Speaking of Jigsaw Puzzles, I finished mine. This is from I have never done an entire jigsaw puzzle all by myself. It's a good thing to do before you go to bed, assuming you can pull yourself away!

I cut up a whole bunch of four block strips from the leftover Zebra triangles, and I'll be sewing those into sixteen patches over the weekend.

Thursday, April 1, 2021

Waltzing Matilda in Australia


The Waltzing Matilda quilt has safely reached its new home in Sydney, Australia!

I love to see my quilts in different locations, and there sure aren't any palms in New England in the northeast corner of the US.

Megan said, "the quilt is, of course, absolutely wonderful..." and that it was welcomed with "the thunderous applause it warrants." She says it has been given pride of place on the lounge where it will be used throughout the winter.

For me, this smile says it all. We make, and give, quilts because of the "Sheer Love Units" they generate.

Mission Accomplished!