Archive for January, 2010

9 Patches still on my mind

How about a Twisted version?

twisted nine patch

Norma linked to Gail’s quilt which is very much like an EQ version I was working with but I had a 9 patch in the sashing and thought it was too busy. Keeping the rail fence and using a solid block like Gail’s is much more to my liking.

I love suggestions that allow me to tweak something I’m working on and making it better!

Anyone else have a favorite 9 patch? I’m saving links and might just do more than one of these quilts. I knew I’d just recently seen another 9 patch & hourglass setting when Kathy linked to hers but couldn’t remember where — well it was Laura’s Christmas 9 Patch.

If you ever want to go back and look at one my my EQ drawings I’ve shared here you can click on the Quilt Designs link in the sidebar under Just Quilting.

Still thinking about 9 patch settings

If I decide to sash both of these are possibilities. I love the look of sashing, just not the extra work.

nine patch with 3 in sashing

I like this one better I think but it would be even more work. (Have I mentioned I’m kind of a lazy quilter?)

nine patch double sash

Kathy shared a photo of one of her 9 patch quilts that I really like too — with hourglass blocks. Some of my favorite 9 patch quilts have alternate hour glass blocks.

My copy of Gwen Marston’s Liberated Quiltmaking II arrived today – I have the first book and love it and was excited to get this one too. I have some ideas floating around in my head….

#6 finished

Pieced by San and her quilting group in NC and quilted with Wonky Feathers from the Pajama Quilter DVD — it’s one of a group of quilts they sent to me to quilt for Alycia’s Quilt of Valor Project.


On my design wall

I like to play along with Judy on Mondays when I have something new up there. I don’t do a lot of pre-cutting but I’ve been cutting 2.5 inch strips for several months now — from uglies in the stash, from leftover pieces,  and extra strips when I’m binding and I intend to play with them this year. Today it’s 9 patches.


I’m still debating the setting maybe alternating plain or rail fence blocks, maybe even sashing them although sashing is one of my least favorite things to do.

The last one I did was this one about 3 years ago. The blocks were 4.5 inch finished and were leftover from another quilt. Not only were they leftover, but Mom had pieced the blocks for me. Funny how I can tell when I finished things from my photos – this was taken at the Loring Park apartment. Don’t you love the Baptist Fans on it?

Final 9patch-1

And here’s the other one from Mom’s blocks. This one was taken in my GA studio so it was done before we moved to Minneapolis. I won’t use this setting because the blocks are too big I think — I don’t really want 18 inch plain blocks to have to fill up with quilting although I did a nice job on this, these were only 13.5 inch finished blocks.

9 patch

Do you have a favorite 9 patch quilt to inspire me

Still binding ~ #5 finished

No puppy model with this HeartStrings top pieced by Sue’s Mom, Monica (I think, or maybe Sue). Do you see the Hearts? There are four of them all coming into the center.


Although it’s a little hard to tell in the photo, I pulled out the binding leftovers for this one and pieced them. Number 6 is trimmed and ready for binding too and that one will also get a pieced binding. I love using leftovers!

Finish #4

Pieced by Tamera and sent to me to quilt and donate. Quilted with the pantograph Wildflower by Willow Leaf Studio.

DSC_9845Modeled by Chesty!

Finish #3

Top pieced by Barbara in FL and sent to me to finish and donate.


And yep, those are my favorite freehand fans again.


I’ve been binding away tonight and I’ve got another one almost finished.

It’s not perfect but SO much better

First — take another look at this photo of my sewing room from the other day.

I intended to halfway clean the room and switch the location of the sewing and cutting tables.


And the cutting table is even clean. Those are string bins in the corner along with a few project bins.


I was going to leave  this side of the room for another day.DSC_9801

But couldn’t stand it.


I did however save this table for tomorrow – time for some football and binding.


Lead me not into temptation….

I’ve been watching Judy’s sock knitting for a couple years now and every time she posts I’m so tempted to give socks a try. Today, I broke down and ordered two books from Amazon. My thinking is that socks would make perfect travel projects. We won’t discuss the fact that I haven’t finished a crochet or knitting project I’ve started in the last year or so and who knows — I might just read about knitting socks and not even try them…..stay tuned.

Speaking of travel — it’s going to be to MINUS 17 tonight so I’m dreaming of my trip next week to Fort Lauderdale. I’ll be sitting on the beach or by the pool reading and sipping Rum Runners!


Snow day!

I had lunch plans but my date canceled on me and I didn’t get a bit of work done today (yet) because I’ve either been  sitting by the fire reading or on the phone….mostly on the phone but at least it snowed!

Adam and Lindsey have picked a day in March and they’ll be having a very small family wedding. I guess I’d better get to work finishing the quilt they’ve chosen.

Chesty prefers being by the fire to being out in the snow.

MPLS Jan-Feb 2010-1

Where do you draw the line?

I save leftover strips and strings, I’ll piece big sections of batting together to get a larger enough piece for a quilt.

For these QAYG blocks I’m making, I pieced fabric for the backs of the blocks AND smaller pieces of batting together.


I also toss small scraps into this bin under my sewing table to use for the first few rounds of my string log cabin blocks.


But I draw the line here — I know there are people who would make pet beds (like VickiW who has a tutorial for them) or something else from all these trimmings but I don’t have the time or inclination to use every tiny scrap.

DSC_9785My sewing room is almost at the point that I’ll have to clean it up in order to get any work done. Luckily the boys are going to visit next month so I’ll have to clean it to set up the cot for one of them.


It’s not usually that blocked in near the door but I’ve created a *U*around my sewing table with my string bins and the ironing board to piece these string blocks. I’m thinking of switching the location of my cutting table by the window and my sewing table.

Finish #2

You thought my HeartStrings quilt was pretty — how about this one pieced by Deborah? She takes the leftover fabric after making a quilt and puts them in the prettiest string quilts.


Look at this great back she pieced — she must have used every bit of this fabric.


Bad hair day

It’s been so cold here that Chesty runs over to his bed in front of the fireplace when he wants us to turn the fire on. Usually he’s sitting up on the back of the sofa looking out the window.

This is what my hair looks like most days too — the static electricity is terrible this time of year.


I took two quilts I’d finished to Habitat for Humanity today. One HeartStrings (blocks by Melva, assembled by Sue) and a donated top by Helen. Both quilts were gorgeous and they were really pleased to receive them for their new homeowners.

Another procrastination post

I’m very fortunate to have help with piecing backs for HeartStrings tops from Sheree, Nancy, and Tish but I still need to piece backs for my tops and those *non standard* size donation tops I get in and it’s something I tend to procrastinate doing.

These 10 tops are among those waiting for backs – 6 are donated tops and 4 are mine.


I don’t tend to make a lot of resolutions but along with getting these backs pieced quicker, I want to focus on getting my strings under control and that means more string blocks and quilts.

So, I’m going to aim for piecing one backing and playing in my strings each Tuesday. Why Tuesday? Because today is Tuesday and I pieced a large back for a top sent to me by Cecile AND because with all my travel Tuesday is the one day I’m least likely to be out of town.

One down,  about 20 left to go…no make that 21 as another cute top came in from Tamera today.


My first 2010 finish

And it’s one of my own quilts. I just love this HeartStrings quilt and while most of my donation quilts go to people I don’t know, I will be saving this one for when I need a comfort quilt for someone close to me.


I love how the random fan quilting turned out and it was really fun to do too.


I love our HeartStrings projects

And as of last night there’s twice as much to love over the next couple months or so. I continued to work on pillowcases for our Pillowcase Project.

I just had to try one out with an actual pillow


Funny how some of my least favorite fabric is making really cute pillowcases like this one.


I’ve got 11 finished, 5 pinned and ready to sew, and another 5 or 6 cut out.


But I just had to start getting organized for another HeartStrings QAYG project. I took leftovers from the pillowcases to piece some squares for the back of the blocks.


And cut batting squares too — I pieced these where they weren’t large enough.


This batting bin hasn’t been emptied out in a couple years — luckily I have more scraps downstairs!


I also wrote up the guidelines for our QAYG project but if you’re interested you’d better jump in quick because we won’t be doing it for long….maybe just a few months.

Now if I can just empty this bin I’ll really be doing well!


2009 summary

95 tops quilted or tied

  • 76 were donated tops for HeartStrings
  • 10 were MY donation tops for HeartStrings
  • 8 were quilted for family
  • 1 was a quilt of mine that was gifted to Lindsey, Adam’s girlfriend

6 of 16 UFO’s were finished

18 new quilts were started

  • 6 of these were finished in 2009
  • 11 are finished tops
  • 1 is a hand piecing project in progress started in Dec

Stash used = 152 yards in finished projects only. Any yardage used in projects still in progress has been carried over for 2010.

Carrying over into 2010 I have

  • 21 personal UFO’s
  • 20 donated HeartStrings tops to quilt & finish
  • 6 donated tops needing binding

A belated Happy New Year

I’ve been making pillowcases today and running errands but now it’s time to sit with the computer and catch up on all the emails and blog comments that came while I was gone. Hopefully, I’ll get a little blog reading in too – I’m afraid to look at the number of unread posts on my Google Reader.

HeartStrings is having a Pillowcase Party this holiday weekend to kick off our Jan/Feb project. I know they’re not string quilts but sometimes we need a fun project to change things up a little and to keep from getting bored. If you’d like to join in, check out the post on the HeartStrings website.

I’ve got 3 finished


And 5 that just need the last seam sewn.


When I first started cutting them out this morning, I found myself pulling my newer fabrics off the shelf but one of my goals with these is to use up some older stash so I’m trying to do that and still have cute pillowcases.

Just in case I miss anyone, I wan’t to thank everyone who wished me a happy holiday and wish everyone who visits me here a very Happy New Year.

Look who cooked me breakfast

We’re back home now but we started out the morning in Georgia with a healthy breakfast. Poor Adam worked until 12:30 AM and then had to be back at 5AM and that’s with a 45 minute drive each way. Luckily he has a couple days off now.


HeartStrings is having a Pillowcase Party this holiday weekend to kick off our Jan/Feb project so I’m hoping to get a few made tomorrow and Sunday.