Fish Tales top

The February Color Blocks top is finished, I’m calling it Fish Tales. This is not the pattern layout provided in the QAL, it was a little too traditional for me so I played with the position of the blocks until I liked what I saw. I added 4.5″ borders and called it done at 48×56, it will make a nice child size quilt.

I auditioned a couple fabrics from my stash for the backing and chose this gray/black print. I think it compliments the front very nicely and there’s enough left over to use for binding as well!

I’ve been watching the Australian Open this past week, unfortunately my favorites did not win. If you don’t know who won the tournament yet… look away now!!!

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I was cheering for Jennifer Brady in the Women’s final and I was hoping Nadal would make it to the final but he did not. The winner on the Women’s side, Naomi Osaka and for the Men, Novak Djokovic was unbeatable!

That’s about all for today. I have not started working on the quilts my former neighbor sent – I want to finish Fish Tales first ๐Ÿ˜‰

Have a great rest of your weekend – Stay safe & stay strong

Happy Valentine’s Day

Not much going on around here regarding VDay… we’ll exchange cards and chocolates but we’re not going out to dinner like we typically would. Although all the restaurants are open, I’m still not comfortable eating indoors with 100% capacity – yes, SC is open at 100%! No biggie, we can eat dinner out once the temps warm up enough to dine outside ๐Ÿ˜‰

I haven’t made a lot of progress on the February Color Blocks project. I wasn’t a big fan of the pattern layout provided – it’s a bit too traditional for me

I’ve been mulling over how I’d like to change it up… plenty of ideas danced in my head and I think I’ve landed on this one. My original thought was to border each section with 2.5″ strips but that would end up measuring 44×56 and I don’t like quilts that are that much longer than the width. Now I think I’ll just sew all the blocks together in this layout and border the whole thing with 4.5″ strips – that would end up 48×56… yeah, that’s more like it!!

In other news, I recently received a call from a good friend in our old community – her 80 year old mother has decided it’s time to clear out her sewing room and get rid of her unfinished projects. After she went through them, my friend wanted to have some of the quilts finished for her mother… hence her call to me! I received a box late last week with several items it in, most are standard size quilt tops that need basting, quilting and binding:

This is a whole cloth top and backing… should be pretty easy to finish
Pretty pastel rail fence blocks
This top is so much longer than the width but I love the scrappy pattern!

There is one project top that needs some finishing… a wedding ring quilt! I have this laid on my ironing board still folded

I have never made one of these so I’m a bit apprehensive. It only needs the four patches added to the outside edges and I’m pretty sure that part wont be a big deal… it’s the quilting and binding that have me feeling nervous. My friend doesn’t have any suggestions for that either… ugh, it’s so hard to finish someone else’s work!!!

When I’m ready to tackle it, I’ll send her some pictures of quilting ideas within my skill set and she can pick from those ๐Ÿ˜‰ The other hard part about all of this is determining how much to charge. I’ve not finished someone else’s work before – I’ve only priced things I’ve made from start to finish. I don’t really have a set ‘price per hour’ I charge and I’m REALLY bad at keep track of time spent on things…ugh, guess I’ll have to get better at it!!

That’s all for now, have a great rest of your weekend! Stay safe & stay strong!

February Color Block QAL

I didn’t spend a lot of time in my sewing room this week so I don’t have a lot of progress to show.

Last week I mentioned that I didn’t have enough of the mint green fabric that I really wanted to use for the background so… I ordered more! The pattern calls for 3 5/8 yard and I only had 3 yards so I went through my fabric receipts and figured out I bought it from 5bucksayard.com. Since I wanted to be sure I didn’t have any shading differences I went ahead and purchased 4 yards to use on this project…saving my original 3 yards for something else ๐Ÿ˜‰ I also purchased a solid blue and a solid peach for my stash.

That new order arrived on Thursday but I didn’t cut into it until yesterday. I spent the morning squaring my scrappy blocks, cutting the 7″ squares from the background fabric, marking the diagonal sewing lines (one for the scrappy block and another to make a bonus HST), sewing on those lines, cutting and pressing – whew!

31 blocks done (I’ll be saving the extra block in my orphan bin for some future project). The mint green is actually a little better represented in the next picture of the bonus HSTs. I have no idea what I’m going to do with these but I certainly couldn’t waste that much fabric. These were squared up at 6″.

And that’s all folks. I still need to cut the sashing for in between each scrappy block and then decide if I want to follow the pattern and apply a 8.5″ border…hmmm, I’ll wait to make that decision after the top is pieced.

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Still no exercise to speak of… it’s been chilly and rainy for several weeks now… at least it’s not snow!! Ha!

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I’ll be cheering for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers tonight in the Super Bowl and the Australian Open starts later tonight too (Monday in Melbourne) – whoop whoop!

Have a great rest of your weekend! Stay safe and stay strong ๐Ÿ™‚

Ready for February

I finished piecing and ironing the 30 blocks necessary for the February Color Block challenge! I pulled fabrics from my gray/black scrap bin and just cut a ton of 2.5″ squares with no idea how many I needed to make 30 blocks… Ha, math prep is not my strong suit! As it turns out, I ended up cutting enough to make 31 blocks!! Wow ๐Ÿ˜ฎ now that’s dumb luck for ya!!!

Once all the blocks were done I started looking through my stash for background options… I pulled these and gave them a trial run

Once again the ‘prep’ bug bit me because I didn’t check the fabric requirements to make sure I had enough before I fell in love with one of them! Argh! The pattern calls for 3 5/8 yards – grrrrr! I only have 3 yards each of the green and orange so I have to either take them out of the running or… alter the pattern or… buy more fabric!!! I’ll let you guess what I’ve decided to do ๐Ÿ˜‰

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ATP & WTA Tennis are gearing up for the Australian Open to begin in about a week. I’ve been keeping up with several players online and many had to endure a rough 14 day quarantine once they arrived in Australia. They’ve finally been released and now they have a little time to really go hard preparing. The warm up tournaments have started so I’ve been watching a few matches late at night as they’re 16 hours ahead of me!!

Other than that I haven’t been doing much… I stopped running for no particular reason. I missed a few days, then the weather turned rainy and cold which made me miss a few more and before I even noticed – it’s been almost a month!!! Ugh!!! I had gotten up to 3 miles doing run/walk intervals – now I’m going to have to start all over ๐Ÿ˜ฆ Damn, that makes me so mad at myself!! There’s just no excuse for it… apathy, laziness, delayed consequences, SMH!

Facepalm Woman Emoji, HD Png Download , Transparent Png Image - PNGitem

That’s all for now… here’s a picture I took last week when Sammie was stalking me for another treat… she’s got one very menacing stare!! LOL

Stay safe โค

Little by little

I’ve been working on my February Color Blocks for Debby Brown’s QAL. I had already pulled my gray/black scrap bin and cut a ton of 2.5″ squares. Last week I finished piecing them into 4-patches, I just needed to press the seams open and pair them into sets of four to be pieced into 16-patch blocks.

I’ve put two together here… I love the little pops of color in some of my squares!

I have this bin sitting on my sewing table with all the groups stacked together, a finished 16-patch is hanging over the side waiting to be pressed. I got side-tracked with another project which I’ll show you next…

My niece messaged me yesterday morning with a link to a mask asking if I thought I could make it for her. She’s been told she will be going back into school in March and she wants to be prepared with extra masks – even though they tell her she’ll be given PPE. The link provides pictures and videos of the mask being made along with a template and measurements.

I got so excited I made a prototype within an hour! Pink is not her color so this one is mine ๐Ÿ™‚ This mask is incredibly easy to make – the hardest part is cutting out the fabric with the template…and that’s not really hard at all!

She asked if I had any sports themed fabric – she’s a PE teacher – unfortunately I have NONE, Zero! I pulled a few ‘fun’ fabrics from my stash and sent her a picture… she chose three of them: Jacks, Dino’s and Buses. Each of these was a FQ but due to the size of the template only the Jacks fabric was cut large enough to get two masks.

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My draw to social media has started to diminish each day now that I don’t fear what new catastrophe might be awaiting. It’s going to take some time for that ‘waiting for the other shoe to drop’ syndrome to subside! I’ve started to get back on Instagram more regularly to see all the beautiful quilts others are posting….ahhhh, now THAT’S my happy place!! ๐Ÿ˜€

I’ll be watching the NFC & AFC Championships today… I’ll be rooting for Buffalo and Tampa Bay – Ha, we shall see!

Have a great rest of your weekend and Stay Safe ๐Ÿ™‚

Color Blocks QAL

I literally just put the final stitches in the binding of my January Color Blocks quilt!! Wooooohooooo!

I popped outside to take a few pictures before putting it in the wash (I couldn’t find the clips I’ve been using to hang the quilt from the fence so it’s just draped over)

I followed the suggestion from Debby Brown to quilt a spiral design, it was a little tedious on those first 3 or 4 rounds but after that it got a lot easier and once I was on the large circles it went pretty fast!

And here are a few indoor pictures before it got dropped in the wash…I used leftover strips from the 16-patch blocks to make the scrappy binding โค โค โค

Debby has release the fabric requirements for the February quilt (but not the pattern), I’ll need thirty 16-patch blocks… I guess I better get back to those gray/black scraps I cut up last week ๐Ÿ˜‰

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Inauguration Day is coming up… I’m trying to stay away from social media to keep my anxiety in check because I’ve seen some horrifying things online about what those white supremacy groups are saying & planning. I pray to God every day he keeps us all safe!! I never thought I’d have to worry about my safety in the USA, times certainly have changed ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

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Have a great rest of your weekend… I’ll be cheering for the Browns & Buccaneers today ๐Ÿ˜‰

2021… what???

I won’t spend a lot of time discussing the current situation with our democracy… this sums it up completely:

My anxiety has been a roller coaster ride for the last few days… ha, I thought it was bad over covid! Nope, I’ve reached a new level in this game ๐Ÿ˜ฆ I’ve been trying to focus on sewing and staying away from the constant news cycle, I don’t always succeed. I keep praying I’ll check and find that trump has been removed from office and held accountable!

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As for sewing & quilting, I’ve pulled my gray/black scrap bin and started cutting 2.5″ squares for Debby Brown’s โ€œColor Blocks Quilt Alongโ€œ. I didn’t even try to keep count, I just cut strips using my AccuQuilt strip die and then manually cut those into squares.

I started piecing them into sets of two and I even made a few 4-patches… lots more still to come

As for the January quilt, I made the choice for backing [inspirational text on the right] but haven’t cut it to size or started basting… I’ve got all month, right? Ha!

I watched the NFL Playoff games yesterday, two of the three teams I was rooting for won… poor Washington! Maybe they can figure out the QB situation before next season!!

I’ll be watching more today, cheering for Ravens, Bears & Browns…let’s see how it goes!!!

That’s all for now… stay safe out there โค

Hello 2021!

We celebrated the new year pretty much how we did last year, quietly at home watching the ball drop on TV – Ha! We popped Asti Spumante at midnight and called our oldest neighbors & friends in California. We bought townhouses next to each other back in 1989 and have been friends ever since. We used to host NYE parties in our basement and because they lived right next door, we started a tradition of having a ‘shot of peppermint schnapps’ before they went home. They moved to a bigger house in MD several years before we moved to SC and they’ve since moved to CA, but we always call each other at midnight and joke about having a shot.

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I’ve started a new quilt along called “Color Blocks Quilt Along“. Debby Brown is leading and her initial intention was to use up scraps by making 16-patch blocks from 2.5” squares but there really are no rules!! She’s been encouraging folks to use whatever they have in their stash ๐Ÿ™‚ I decided to use one of the FQ bundles I’ve been getting each month from my Fat Quarter Shop subscription [side note: I changed my subscription starting this month to their Modern FQ Club, I was getting too many florals in the Moda FQ club].

I took 10 of the FQ’s from the Homestead Petite bundle and cut them into 2.5″ strips. I created strip sets of four then sub-cut them into 2.5″ strips, pieced those into 16-patch blocks and voila‘… I got 26 blocks!

She released the January pattern on NYE so we could sew into the new year; the pattern is called Suitable for Framing and uses 25 blocks. I decided to use a soft gray for the background fabric, I think it helps tone down all the bright colors :-p The top finished at 64×64, a generous lap quilt ๐Ÿ™‚

The QAL is all about finishing the quilt each month so she also offers up a suggested quilting motif which can be accomplished on a domestic machine. First, I must choose a backing fabric… here are two possibilities: on the left is a king size cotton sheet from Target, on the right is 108″ inspirational text fabric I’ve had in my stash. I’m leaning towards the inspirational text fabric since this quilt will most likely be donated to charity…and who couldn’t use a little charitable inspiration!?

That’s about all for now…enjoy the rest of your weekend and stay safe out there!!

Let’s recap 2020

When I thought about looking back on this year I almost didn’t, ugh! It’s been a year I’d like to forget but I was curious to see just how much I got accomplished quilting wise, so here are the numbers:

Quilts Started: 17
Quilts Finished: 14 (plus 3 UFOs from last year)
Quilts Donated: 13 (includes finishes from prior years)

I’ll admit, I never would have guessed I started or finished that many quilts this year – 2020 has felt so unproductive!

I checked my WordPress numbers and these are the three posts that got the most traffic:
1. Hands2Help quilts
2. Finishing mode
3. Two finishes!

My favorite quilts made this year are:
1. Villages


2. Christmas Postage stamp


3. Plaidish

Even with all this quilting beauty I will still be glad to put 2020 in the rear view. I know 2021 will still have challenges but I’m hopeful the year will get better with each passing month โค

My New Year wish for you all is Health, Wealth and Happiness! Try to enjoy the last few days of 2020…

Linking up with Cheryl fromย Meadow Mist Designsย โ€œBest ofโ€ linky party

Let’s close out 2020

We had a quiet Christmas, just the two of us. There weren’t many presents, at this age if we want something we just get – no waiting for the holidays ๐Ÿ˜‰ We talked/Skyped with family and friends which was nice, otherwise we spent the day watching TV. It was pretty chilly here in Myrtle Beach, the high was only 32 with a ‘feels like’ in the 20’s…Brrrrr!

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I think I’ve found a quilt-a-long for 2021: Debby Brown’s Color Block QAL This is intended to use up scraps and each month she will release a new pattern. Fingers crossed I can keep up! LOL She has released some information early in case we want to get a head start on January and I’ve decided instead of using scraps, this time I’ll use one of the many FQ bundles that have been piling up from my FQS subscription.

As per the details, most of the patterns will use 2.5″ squares and the first one will use 16-patch blocks so I cut and pieced the FQ into strip sets, then subcut them into 2.5 strips ready to be pieced into blocks.

I pulled out four strips and made a block…but…I don’t like it. The color placement is off – too much dark blue and yellow check in this one block so I’ll be ripping it apart and starting over :-/ Plus I didn’t iron my seams open and it’s just too bulky at the intersections…must remember that when I get started again!!

I’ll be using up the last of my PTO this week and I plan to spend most of my time in the sewing room {fingers-crossed!}

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No big plans here for New Year’s Eve. I bought a bottle of Martini & Rossi Asti Spumante and some frozen appetizers that I’ll heat up for munching as we watch the ball drop in Times Square.

I want to take a moment to Thank You for sharing your kind words with me this year, it really has meant so much โค

I wish you all a safe and very Happy New Year full of Health, Wealth and Happiness!!