Breezy and Overcast

We’re OK with the weather being less than perfect. There’s no agenda other than relaxing, reading, and spending time together.



Cast On

I needed something on the needles for the drive tomorrow … Something easy. I also need a scarf for a trip next month to Minneapolis since my winter stuff went to GA so I cast on a shawl (scarf?).

Pattern – Yowza Weigh it Shawl
Yarn – Miss Babs Yowza Whatta Skein


It’s a mindless knit which is just what I wanted right now.



The last set of finished blocks is now assembled. Child size as it is, it will not get borders and I might even choose this one as my next one for big stitch quilting. If not, it’s small enough that I could quilt it on my regular sewing machine.


We’re heading to Marco Island for a few days and Keith’s nephew will come stay at the apartment to watch Chesty. We’ve been lucky that he’s been available and that Chesty has only had to go to the kennel once since June. Of course that meant that one of my tasks for today was to clear off the bed in the sewing room and neaten up everything else in the room for him to stay. Laundry is in progress, packing is next and then a walk is on the agenda for the rest of the day along with some more big stitch quilting tonight.



These blocks were pieced from my leftover strips and strings last November. The plan was to spend the summer again at Big Canoe so I set aside some projects to work on while I was there … Of course, the move was unexpected and I did not spend the summer in GA but the bin came here to FL and now this too is done.


I’ve got a second set of blocks to assemble that I’ll work on next I think. A smaller quilt and no borders so I should get that one done before our trip on Friday … I think!


Hat #2

I can’t seem to get a good photo but I finished the second hat last night and added a butterfly tonight. It might have looked better in a solid yarn but I had the leftover purple from hat number one so that’s what I used.


I’m hoping the butterfly is more recognizable than my ladybugs!!


The sewing cave

Now that the time has changed I really need to get some additional light in the sewing room. I was adding borders to the string rail fence quilt around 5:30pm and it’s pretty dark in there.


The top is done and ready for a photo tomorrow … When the sun is up.

The race photos came out today – there were photographers all along the course which made for some interesting photos. These three show my race …. From “this is not so bad” to “are you kidding me?!” to “Thank God I’m done!”



Sticking to the list

I resisted the temptation to start something new and decided to work on assembling a set of blocks … It just needs the border now and I’ll sew that on tomorrow.

Next on the list was the second hat for Rae. I really, really, really, dislike using DPN’s but I couldn’t find a 16 inch cable for my interchangeable needles — yep, they all must be in GA.


This pattern is from the book Baby Beanies



It’s always fun to see one of my quilts or instruction sheets published. Instructions for my Amish Stripes and Strings were published in a booklet included with an Australian magazine a while back and recently they requested permission to republish it in a magazine put out by Down Under Quilts.


Finding a copy in the mail last week was a fun surprise.


Unfortunately I didn’t have a high resolution photo and the quilt had already been donated so they used a drawing of the quilt for the magazine.


I take so many photos of my quilting but I’m bad about saving all the high resolution photos in one spot especially since I need to reduce the resolution of photos before using my iPad to post them to the blog. I need to do a better job of organizing and saving the high resolution versions of the photos because most of the requests for publication come after the quilts have already been donated.



Yesterday I added a row to my Tumbler Race quilt so it’s now 12×13 blocks. I love how this one turned out!


And while I was in the sewing room, I went ahead and finished assembling the Drunkard’s Path Ladybug quilt. I’m also pleased with this one !


Now to decide what to work on next. I want to start a 16 patch quilt but I have two block sets that need assembly and a double 4 patch cut out and started just before the move. I really, really should work on one of those but we’ll see what I decide after I finish my coffee.


Big Stitch quilting

I’m in love!


There are books and tutorials on Big Stitch quilting and I’ve read several over the years. The biggest questions are probably the following:

What size/type of needle to use?
Most of what I’ve read suggests a chenille or embroidery needle. I have both but decided to try the embroidery needle first. I’m using a size 4. It’s a little longer than the size 22 chenille needle which I think is helpful.

What thread?
Again, most of the reading I did suggests size 8 or 12 perle cotton (size 12 is thinner) one or two places also mentioned crochet cotton and since I’ve used a lot of crochet cotton in size 10 to tie quilts, I thought I’d try that. KnitPicks has crochet cotton in lots of colors and I decided to try theirs in a gray … Love the thread, love the color!!

Hoop or no hoop?
I brought my 14 inch hoop to FL but in the end I decided to try it without the hoop. I just felt that I would be moving the hoop too frequently. Tonya had a great blog post several years ago about quilting without a hoop and I looked that up before starting.

Right now I’m just quilting on either side of the seam but I’m going to have to put a line of quilting in the middle of these rows too – I’m trying to echo the piecing to emphasize the diagonal lines/diamond shape.


My choices for marking are to use a Hera – creates a crease but doesn’t “mark” the quilt, painters tape, or a marking pen. People are using frixon pens the marks iron away but I’m a little nervous about that. I’ve used the blue pens without a problem in the past but wouldn’t be able to see that line in the darker fabric.

I’ll let you know what I decide when I get to that point.

Any other questions?!

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