Whoop Whoop – Feathers is all done!

As I’ve said, I just love doing the binding because it means I’m almost done – and since it’s been raining all day I was able to focus and “get ‘er done”!

Here’s a couple shots of my successes and issues with my first attempt at ‘stitching the binding from the top’ – ha, I’m sure there’s a more formal name for it but I can’t seem to find it. So to sum it up, you sew the binding on the front as usual but instead of stitching the binding on the back side you fold it over to the back but stitch ‘in the ditch’ of the binding on the FRONT. The trick is to catch the binding on the back without being able to see what you’re doing :-s

I was pretty successful on the straight away – I pinned it like crazy!

It worked

And two of the corners turned out well – here’s one of them (sorry, it’s a little blurry).

this corner worked

The problems came on two of the other corners – I guess I didn’t pin well enough because I missed in a couple of places. Not only did I miss once, but I tried sewing over it a second time and I missed it AGAIN! LOL!

missed both sides

Here’s the other corner where I missed. I decided to just sew these few areas by hand as I stitched up the mitered corners.

this corner missed

Here she is all done!

Completed Quilt

Label

Close up label

I’m a little bummed that I didn’t get the binding stitches lined up in this corner…so…after it comes out of the washer/dryer I may undo this section and try again.

I’m pretty darn happy with the overall quilt and can’t wait to offer it up to my friends on Facebook.

That’s it for now…I’m off to watch the ACMs!

G’night!

Quilting done…on to Binding

I stopped while I was quilting last night to grab a picture. I’ve been meaning to mention how much I’m LOVING my walking foot – it has made all the difference when quilting to keep my fabric from puckering. Wow, something so small can have a huge impact!!

Walking foot

You can see in the picture that I’ve marked my quilting with pencil lines – no worries it’s water soluble so it’ll come out in the wash; actually some of the first lines I marked are barely noticeable now. I used the blue Clover Water Soluble Pencil.

Clover pencils

I finished up the quilting this morning by adding a few rounds of framing stitches on the tangerine border. Next, I laid it out on the floor and squared it up to so it’s ready for binding.

Top from above

Here’s a better shot of the quilting – simple straight lines mimicking the center diamonds, which created their own diamond pattern…pretty cool!

Quilting

I plan to use the same fabric as the back for binding which will create a contrast on the front but will blend in on the back.

Backing fabric

This is the part I love the most…Binding…it means I’m almost done! I’ll machine bind this quilt; I’ve tried hand binding (once) and didn’t really love it so I’ll stick with the machine. This time I’m going to try stitching the binding through the top – check out this post for a better explanation. Since the binding matches the backing fabric it’ll be a bit more forgiving if I should mess up :-/

It’s been raining all morning and it’s supposed to keep doing that for the rest of the day…so I guess there’s nothing else to do but stay in my sewing room! :-)

ttfn…

WIPs update

Baby blanket #4 has been basted and is ready to be quilted. I tried a different basting technique this time, I used basting pins – how novel! The few other blankets I’ve made I’ve used basting spray which worked well but I’m a little freaked about using them inside with the fumes and all – and the weather outside has been rainy for the last few days so I couldn’t take everything outside to spray baste.

Because of all that I decided to try pins, plus the blanket is small enough that I didn’t need hundreds of pins so it made for the perfect ‘trial size’. I first lined everything up and gave it a good all over pressing and then laid it out on the floor and started pinning in the middle and worked my way out. It was basted in no time – now it sits on my ‘design bed’ waiting for me to figure out how I want to quilt it.

Pin basted

I just love the all the happy colors on the top as well as the back – and as usual I don’t have an intended recipient. Once it’s finished I’ll post it on FB to see if any friends or neighbors would like to have it for their kid/grandkid.

I’ve also started following a “Quilt-Along-With-Me!” series posted by Amanda Rolfe of 3and3quarters – last night I finished the first block. It’s called the Father’s Choice Block and after watching her tutorial I was so inspired I pulled my fabrics and finished it in one sitting. I still need to make three more and because I was in such a hurry to make it I chose a fabric that I only had enough for one block…so the other three blocks will be made with coordinating fabrics – at least I hope they coordinate! The block is supposed to measure 23″ square…mine’s a little off 23×22 7/8 – close :-p

Block1

She gives some really great tips about pressing seams so they ‘nest’ when sewing it all together – I really need to focus on that a little more as I had some issues with my seams not pressed in the right direction. It worked itself out OK but I hope to improve when I make the other three.

That’s all for now…

G’night

April patchwork block

…ugh, this one was a bit difficult for me…lots of seams and it seems (pun intended) I’m not so good at that!

Let me back up just a bit. I’ve been following along with Tinkerbellknits as she posts the monthly patchwork challenges – you can read about the April block here and also find links to previous months at the bottom of her post.

The April block is called Cat and Mice – it requires cutting half square triangles and then sewing them together in a specific pattern to make a 12″ block – here is my attempt

April Cat and Mice

As I’m sure you can see, there’s an obvious alignment issue with the upper left square where it meets the center block (or supposed to meet!). I’m sure some will gasp when I say I’m going to leave it that way! Since I’m still learning how to do all this, I want to keep my blocks – mistakes and all – and eventually make a ‘Learning Quilt’. I can look back at it in the future and (hopefully) see how far I’ve come!!

ttfn…

Charlotte Racefest 10K

I took part in a local 10K run yesterday and I have to say the weather was PERFECT! The morning started off a little muggy but very quickly that changed to a light breeze with overcast skies and temps right about 65. There was a cool breeze the entire run and everyone in the race seemed to be enjoying themselves – well except for at least two people I saw sitting on the side of the route. One lady had tripped in a pot hole near a water station, her knee looked pretty scuffed up – I know that feeling after my tumble a few months ago. A little farther into the race there was a young lady sitting at an intersection with a police officer and she looked like she might pass out, shortly afterward I heard the sirens of the ambulance – I sure hope she’s alright.

As I had mentioned in a previous post, I was worried that my finish time would not be as good as the race last year…and I was right. I followed a 4:1 run/walk ratio for the first half of the run but I had to walk more and more after that point. And then came the dreaded HILL within the last mile – I knew it was coming and tried to reserve as much energy as possible but I ended up walking the whole thing (as did many others). Once I was at the top I told myself “run the rest of the way” and I almost did, I took a short walk break about .25 before the end and then did my ‘hurry up’ mantra to the Finish line.

Here are the stats – both Official and Garmin:

Official Results:

4.11.15 10k official results

Garmin:

4.11.15 10k garmin

Post-race picture:

4.11.15 10K resized

That’s me in the middle (bib 2640)…the two girls on the outside are L & K that I run with all the time. Yes, I had my post-race Michelob Ultra with the girls – I only had one because I was driving ;-)

(Edit: I forgot a pic of the medal)

I think I like last year’s medal better because there were different medals for the different distances…they added a 5K run this year so this medal covers both 5 & 10K…no fair!

2015 Charlotte Racefest 10K medal

I have no complaints about this race – it’s extremely well organized, the route is well marked with timers posted at multiple intervals and the post-race celebration not only includes beer but there was an awesome band and lots of free goodies. No doubt I’ll be doing this one again :-)

Update WIP project

As I mentioned earlier this week, I started a new top with the March fabrics from my FQ club.

I mixed 7 different FQ to make either the center or the outside frame and then I had ‘fun’ trying to figure out how to put them all together. Once I had them all laid out on my ‘design bed’ I found the colors and patterns were just too busy when butted up against each other which led me to the decision to sash them with strips of white.

I had a couple yards of plain white so I set about cutting all the strips I needed and finished putting the top together last night. I think it needs a border but I’m not sure what it should be…maybe a 3 or 4″ strip of solid orange or coral???

top flash

The backing fabric I found for this project can be seen in the pic from my last post…oh, what the heck, here it is again. It’s a cute jelly bean/egg-shaped pattern with all the same colors as the top.

IMG_2171

Once I figure out what to do about a border, then I can move on to thinking about quilting. My initial thoughts are to stitch an echo diamond pattern inside and outside of the diamond centers and then maybe some straight lines on the white sashing…hmmm, I’ll keep thinking…

Exercise

I got another short run in today. The temps have started to rise here – after that winter I’m not complaining at all – but I’ll need to start getting up earlier. I went out around 9am today and by the end it felt really hot. My 10K is this Saturday and I’ll be interested to see how close I am to my time from last year (1:18:48).

4.9.15 Garmin

That’s about all for now…I’m headed to my sewing room.

G’night

FO, WIP and exercise

I have two finished objects to share.

I followed video tutorials by Jenny Doan of Missouri Star Quilt Co and Vanessa of Crafty Gemini and made a bag from scraps…it’s so bright and cheerful, I really love it.

Front of bag and straps - I used two fabrics for the straps to match the 'scrappy' look of the bag
Front of bag and straps – I used two fabrics for the straps to match the ‘scrappy’ look of the bag
Back of bag
Back of bag
Lining - I put my clearance fabric from Hobby Lobby to good use
Lining – I put my clearance fabric from Hobby Lobby to good use

Over the weekend I also made a zippered pouch using a pattern tutorial from Craftsy. I used two FQ pieces from the March club shipment (admittedly two of my least favorites). I love the quilting I did on the fabric – it’s just a simple diamond pattern – I used a water soluble pen to mark the lines and then sewed away. The pen lines weren’t disappearing with steam from the iron so I dipped it into water in the sink. I squeezed out most of the water and popped it into the dryer for about 20 mins on medium and it came out fine.

This is also the first time I have EVER put a zipper in anything – it turns out it was pretty easy :-) Now I can’t wait to try something else that needs a zipper ;-)

zipper pouch

zipper pouch lining

zipper pouch quilting

I’ve also started making another topper with more of the March fabric. I’m not sure what you call this block – it’s a diamond in a square – I’ve squared them up to 6.5 inches and now I plan to frame them all with white sashing. I’ve got them laid out on my ‘design bed’…LOL.

I found some pretty cheerful fabric for the backing while grocery shopping at my local Super Walmart, you can see it in the bottom right corner, it’s a Waverly fabric and I thought it would go well with all the bright colors of the top.

IMG_2171

Last but certainly not least, I got some exercise in this weekend too. I was supposed to meet up with my running buddies on Saturday morning but things just didn’t work out. Rather than write off the whole weekend, I got out Sunday afternoon and put in just over 4 miles. The Charlotte RaceFest 10K is coming up this weekend so I needed to see how close I could get to 6.2 miles – I’m pretty sure I’ll be fine but I know I won’t be anywhere close to my time from last year :-( That’s a bit of a bummer but it is what it is.

My c25k app was on the fritz again, I think I’m going to have to find another more reliable app. At least I had my Garmin ;-)

4.5.15 Garmin

On top of that I went out for a quick walk this evening; it felt pretty good to stretch the legs after yesterday.

4.6.15

That’s it for now…thanks for sticking around til the end!

G’night!