The 5 Star top is assembled. It’s rare that I make a monochromatic quilt and right now I’m a bit ambivalent about this one although I know it will be fine with quilting. There are instructions on the website for this quilt including RWB version.
By the way, I don’t like making square quilts. I make quilts to be used and I’m taller than I am wide (at least for now) but sometimes I like to start with a square design like these enlarged star quilts where I start with a single block. In this case, border 1 (the light green) and border 2 (the half square triangles) were only added to the top and bottom of the quilt giving me 16 extra inches of length before I added the final border.
Sometimes I frame the entire quilt before adding the length like in this Log Cabin but the idea is the same, two of the borders are only added to the top and bottom of the quilt to add length.
Another way I like to add length is to add borders just on top. These hearts weren’t square before I added the border but I wanted just a little more length.
And of course, I’ve added rows of stars over my Patriotic Rail Fence quilts several times, including the original version that had stars not just on the top but also on the bottom.
Keith and I have a quiet day planned with just one of our ‘boys’ here but I have to say he’s been a wonderful father to all 4 of the boys!
My dad is also in my thoughts today. He’s been gone 28 years but I have so many wonderful memories … we had a large family, 6 kids, so our vacations were either visiting family or camping. Chris was always jealous because he wanted to go camping but our vacations were again, either visiting family or staying in hotels – Keith definitely wasn’t into camping!
I’m not sure where Kevin was … probably standing with Mom while she took the photo but the other 5 of us are in this photo with Dad. (At least I’m assuming it was Mom who took the photo!) I’m standing right in front of Dad with the bag on my shoulder, Debbie is in front of me, Ann is beside me, Dad is holding Maureen and Pat is on the left fishing.
We had a rough night last night but Finn is doing great – he just slept too much because of the anesthesia yesterday and kept us up half the night. He wasn’t hurting … just wanted to be out of his bed and with us. Lots and lots of whining.
For those of you who hated seeing him in the cone you’ll be happy to know he’s being really good – leaving his incision alone and hasn’t been in the cone at all today but I’ve got to say his arm looks a bit ridiculous where they shaved him for the IV. Makes you realize he’d look a lot skinnier without hair!
Chesty had terrible allergies all his life and spent his share of time in the cone so it really doesn’t bother me a lot. It’s a lot less traumatic than having complications from a wound they won’t leave alone and I just consider it part of being a responsible pet parent.
In addition to spending time with Finn, I also managed to get in a walk – 4.26 miles and since I’ve fallen behind I decided I need to make a push during the rest of the month. Technically I should be at about a 1000 miles by the halfway point – June 30 – but I’m going to aim for 900. That requires 56 miles in 14 days which even keeping in mind that I count all my steps/miles, I don’t get many around the house so I’ve got to get in a walk every day to meet the goal. I’ve also challenged Keith and the boys to step up their game and the loser will be planning and cooking dinner for everyone on July 8th at Chris’ house. I can guarantee it won’t be me cooking but I’m anxious to get to GA and spend some time with the boys and the little ones!
Finn and I also spent some time in the sewing room … I love how my machine is set up for quilting. The back extension on the Koala cabinet plus the table on the left side of the machine support so much of the quilt which makes it much easier. I’m also still amazed at how much the texture from quilting transforms a top. I’ve just got about 1/4 of this left to quilt now and while my spirals are still wonky, I’m really liking the texture of them on this top and so happy I took the risk of doing them.
Finn’s surgery went well and he’s home. Right now he’s pretty groggy but I’m not looking forward to trying to keep him calm for the next week!
I knew I wanted to freemotion quilt this small top but I also didn’t want to mess it up. I can do a decent meander but I’ve never been a huge fan of a plain meander so I decided I’d keep it simple and do a loopy meander. First up was the doll quilt and while it was OK, I realized I wouldn’t like it at all on the Pluses and Circles quilt. So I went back to dithering about whether or not to just do a plain meander. Instead I decided to practice a few swirls … they’re something I find easy to quilt on the longarm and they always turn out well.
Not too bad so I decided what the heck – I’ll never get halfway decent at quilting on the domestic machine if I don’t take chances and just quilt what I want. I’ll improve over time with practice.
The binding is on the small doll quilt and ready for hand stitching and I’ve got a little less than a 1/3 of this one quilted. Let’s just call them wonky swirls!
All the pin basting is also finished and I’m asssembling the 5 Stars in quads so 3 are done and I’ve got one more to sew together before I start on the borders. Progress has been made but I go to get Finn from the vet in about 30 minutes and I’m not sure how much I’ll be able to sew in his immediate post-op period.
I always get more accomplished when I have a plan or a list of goals to accomplish but sometimes I don’t want or need the self imposed pressure like the last few weeks when I was traveling and then sick for two weeks.
Now I’m feeling better, have company coming for a visit next week, and just have a few weeks before I head to Big Canoe so it’s time to start planning!!
My table is up in the guest room so I need to get everything pinned that might be quilted before we leave for Big Canoe so I can take that table down. I pulled backs and started pinning. Love this little flannel butterfly fabric and it will work well with the Bright Rectangle top. As I’ve often said, it’s so nice to have a stash to pull from so I don’t have to shop every time I make a quilt.
As I was pressing the top, I went ahead and looked at thread choices. It will be quilted just like the blue/green rectangles in a straight line grid following the piecing lines. I ALWAYS look at my thread choices on the quilt top before choosing – ALWAYS! My first thought frequently turns out not to be the one that works best.
I use a lot of lime thread on bright quilts but in this case, I’m going to choose the cream.
Since I’ve been quilting again on the sewing machine here, I like to do a practice piece before freemotion quilting – I’ve been making doll quilts from leftovers and I have a few tops waiting. I’m going to use gray thread on my next quilting project and that thread will also work on this small doll quilt so I got this one layered first.
So 1 week before company, 3 weeks before Big Canoe, 1 day before Finn has his neutering surgery and this is my list – I definitely don’t plan to have everything done before I leave but I’ll work my way down it.
- Green doll quilt – done
- Bright rectangles – in progress
- Small tumbler from Maine
- Green Stars – in progress
- School House quilt
- Applique butterflies on Jelly Roll Quilt
- Back for Becky’s king size quilt
- Borders on Mom’s queen size log cabin
- Green doll quilt
- Circles and Pluses
- Bright Rectangles
- Maine Tumbler
Bind – whatever I get to
Walk – it’s time to get back in my groove as I’ve fallen behind on my miles in the last few weeks. I have passed the 800 mark but I need 2017 miles by December 31st!
Not much accomplished today other than time with Finn and a dentist appointment but we did have the first rainbow of the season or at least the first one I’ve seen …
Chasing it through the park …
…to the bay! Unfortunately, I couldn’t get a photo of the entire rainbow but you can see the faint glow of the second rainbow in this photo.
Last summer I pulled out a bunch of my green scraps and cut 3 kits to bring back with me to piece here in FL. The first one was my carpenter star and I added browns in with the greens. It’s not quilted yet but I love how this one turned out.
Today I pulled out the 5 Stars kit and started piecing it. It’s really green! Not sure I love it but I’m sure it will be fine when it’s finished and quilted.
I also drafted a RWB version ( my blue looks a little purple I know!) and a number of people have made this version as a Quilt of Valor.
The 3rd kit is a green/blue LeMoyne Star but that one is still waiting to be pieced.
Have you ever googled yourself? It seems a little vain but sometimes I find the most amazing things – like groups that use one of my instruction sheets for their donation projects, a site that features one of my instructions sheets, or a google images search that turns up lots of my quilts.
Sometimes I see a quilt I’ve forgotten about like this one of Mom’s I quilted for her.
Or one of my many HeartStrings Quilts – either made or just quilted by me.
It can be a bit surprising to find yourself turning up all over the Internet!
While I was debating a pieced border versus a single fabric border on the Ohio Star, I played around in TouchDraw – the app I use on the iPad to draft quilts. It’s a drawing app not a quilt app but it gets the job done. (Maybe one day EQ will develop an app for the iPad.) While I was working, I recolored the Spools and Star quilt – I’m thinking I might make it in RWB. I use the app Impression to put a watermark on my quilt photos.
While I was under the weather, I spent time organizing our photos from the Hatteras trip and ordered a bunch of photos printed using the Shutterfly app so I could make mini albums for my Mom, my sister, my brother, Chris, and myself. I had fun choosing different photos depending on who the album was for and I’ve heard back from everyone that they received them and they all loved them. I have lots of digital albums but sometimes I just want a physical album to flip through!
One of my favorite memories from the trip …. this photo of the two Rae’s. Mom and her great granddaughter named after her. It’s so wonderful that they can spend time together – not many people have the opportunity to get to know their great grandparents. I’m hoping Rae has lots more years with Mom and I’m saving photos like this one for her so when she’s grown she’ll have reminders of the times they spent together and she’ll know how much Mom loved her.
Keith got home just before midnight so I get to sleep in … he’ll get up in the morning to feed and walk FInn so I’m going to putter around looking for inspiration for my next project! There are inspiration albums to browse, eBay, Google photos, and Flickr!