Wednesday, December 30, 2015

End of the Year 2015

This year has flown by at amazing speed.

I never even created a post for November and it is already the end of the year.

I just realized that I have some small Christmas quilts that I did in November but never took a picture.  I will try and do that in the light tomorrow.

I did finally finish my November UFO...on Christmas day.  Considering that I wanted to give that quilt to my youngest daughter for Christmas one would have thought I would have gotten it done sooner.

As it is she got to see the quilt top and then I handed it over to my oldest daughter to quilt.  That my take awhile.  Since she returned to working outside the home instead of being an independent contractor she has less time to quilt or sew.

This quilt has been a long time in the making.  It is inspired by Monet's reflections on a lily pond.
The quilt itself is called Reflections.  I began collecting fabric for it after seeing Monet's painting when they were at the local Art Museum.  I collected fabric for at least 10 years, I had enough for at least three quilts by then.  This first appeared on a UFO list in 2011.  That is the year I got a lot of blocks cut.
One year I got all the lines drawn for the stitch and flip corners.  I even sewed a few blocks and got bored.

I decided that this year was the year I would get the quilts done.  I worked on the blocks on and off most of the year.  I rearranged my UFO numbers when it came up to soon in the year.  Then I hit choice now.  I started sewing blocks again.

I got close.  I finally got all the blocks made after Thanksgiving.  The second weekend in December, I got the first quilt laid out.  My daughter hurt her back and so I ended up taking care of grandkids one weekend.  And sewed a row every night after work.  By the weekend before Christmas I had the center together.  I got the first boarder on and started ironing the half square triangles for the second boarder.  Those were all done by the 24th and I almost got all the boarders sewn together after church on Christmas Eve.   The next morning I started sewing at 6:30am and got the second boarders on by about 11am with breaks to cook a ham and make other food for the day and finish wrapping presents.  Third boarder was on by 12:30.  Ham out of the oven at that time and started loading stuff in the car.

Here is a couple of pictures at my daughters house after she opened the gift.  Both girls are standing on the couch to hold it up.  It is huge.

This quilt is King Size.  The second picture shows the colors better but the first one shows the boarders.

One Saturday, I was fighting a cold and did not really do anything but on Sunday I got the last of my Fat Quarter Shop Snapshot blocks cut out.  I sewed the blocks all together on Monday and got most of the sashing on the blocks.

Tuesday I finished sewing the top together.  I did not want it to become a UFO for next year.

Yep, the steps never got scrapped and painted last summer.  I did scrap moss off and was going to work on it but got side tracked.

Today I laid out another Reflections quilt.  I did mention that I had enough blocks for three quilts.  This one will go by my oldest daughter.

I also started working on the back for the Snapshot quilt.

I need to make more progress on quilty stuff before I have to go back to work next Monday.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

October was an exciting month.

I did not get much sewing done this month because my husband and I traveled to Ireland.  We went for a 12 day trip, we left the west coast on October 2nd and after a stop over in Amsterdam we landed in Dublin on October 3rd.  This was the first time I have ever traveled to Europe.  As a matter of fact this is the first time I have had a passport.  We were not able to schedule this very far in advance since getting my husband birth certificate fixed took me 4 months and we did not get our passport until late August.

It was an adventure driving on the left hand side of the road and a real adventure trying to find our way around.  I have a great sense of direction and have to admit that for the first time in my life I was lost in Dublin as we attempted to find our only took 5 hours of driving around.  At one point we ask a police officer for assistance and he told us 'that we could not get there from here'.

I don't have all the pictures downloaded yet but here is one of my favorites from Dublin.  We were on a double decker bus when I got this one.

We visited Trinity college to see the Book of Kells and the long room.  No photos allowed there.

We then moved on to Kilkenny and wondered the medival town.   Those pictures are on my husbands camera.  Then onto Waterford and visited Waterford Crystal and the Viking triangle.

After Waterford we went to the West and visited Killarney.  We were suppose the do the Ring of Kerry but decided instead to visit Muckross House and the National park.  This is Torc Waterfall that we hiked up to.

This is Muckross house from a distance.  It had beautiful gardens.  The house has 135 windows which is what it was taxed on.  It was giving to the Irish government with the surrounding lands for a park in the 1930's.

After Killarney we headed north and visited the cliffs of Mohre - very impressive sight.

By far the place we enjoyed the most was our stay in a castle.  We stayed at Ashford Castle.  We saved the best for last and were glad that we had not gone here first.   Ashford Castle was voted the #1 hotel in the world just last month.   Of course for what two nights cost we could have stay another week in Ireland but it was a once in a lifetime experience.

In addition to staying in the castle, we also cruised on the lake and went to the Ireland School of Falconry.  That was my husbands favorite part.  He was not going to handle the bird but after a while he decided to try and I had trouble getting Wexford back.

After Ashford we had to head back to Dublin to fly out the next day.  What a return to earth.

When we got home we were off again to help watch grandkids during a wedding.

After returning home I was finally able to pull out my UFO for October.  I got it done today.  I still need to press it but the sun was shining and I took a picture before the rains return.  We are suppose to have a very wet next few days.  Hopefully I will get some additional sewing done.  I return to work soon and would like to get the snapshot block for September and October done.

The UFO is from last year.  It is the FatQuarter Shop Wishes BOM.  I only had six of the blocks done.  It is nice to have another UFO out of my sewing room.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

September is Gone

I can't believe how quickly September has come and gone.  Tomorrow is the last day of the month and it seems it just started.

I did complete my UFO for the month but very little else.  For this month I had on my list to finish the last nine embroidered block for the Hoop Sisters Embroidered Star Quilt.  There are 120 block total and I must have been crazy to start this.

Of course the next step is to trim all the blocks and join them.  After I figure out how to do that I will then have to cover the seams on the back.  It is going to be pretty if I ever get it done.  But I have to tell you if I had known all the steps with this quilt I don't think I would have let the shop convinced me to do this project.

I did get the binding on this little quilt.  I took it with use to the beach this last weekend.

I had taken another quilt to work on but because the weather was so absolutely gorgeous I did not stay inside to do much binding.  It was windy and the tide was on the way in when my husband and I went for a walk on Saturday evening.  

It was by birthday on Sunday and my husband gave me fabric and a pattern.  He got me a kit that we had seen a few weeks earlier and I had said I thought it would be fun to do.  Now I will have to brush up my paper piecing skills.

Monday, August 31, 2015

July and August projects

OK were did the last two months go?

I think I am ready for the structure of fall.

First for the UFO.

This was am embroidery project that I started a year ago.  I had actually completed all of the blocks last fall.  I then got side tracked with other things.  I made a few blocks for my daughter to make into pillows but never framed the blocks and cut the sashing.  You would think that would be the easy part and I sould get it done quickly....but I was after the next project.

The next project I worked on was August's UFO.  Another one that I had the blocks completed and just needed to lay it out and sew the rows.   I actually got it together early in the month but only recently took the picture.

Then I got caught up on all of the Snapshot BOM blocks.  When I say all....I had not done any of them until this month.   One weekend I cut them all out.  Then the next weekend I began sewing.  Last weekend I finished Block 8.  Now I just need to stay on track and get the rest done.  If I do that maybe this will not become next years UFO.

And now for the random project.  This has been a UFO for 6 years.  This was the quilt that my first grandchildren all had tummy time on.  The last 3 did not because 6 years ago my husband tossed it on top of the dog kennel....  The dog was bored and started chewing on it through the sides.  This was the second quilt that he chewed up.  The first one he did while sitting at my feet.  I was under a quilt and did not realize that he was chewing on it at the time.  I did not kill him but I was super anger.  He was such a sweet tempered dog and he loved everyone.  He is still alive but after he broke my leg in 3 places we had to find a new home for him.  For the next 12 weeks I could not even get out of my house alone I certainly could not take care of him.

I have had repairing this quilt on my list to do for all this time.  I recently was working on sorting scraps and finally found some that will work for this.  This month I began to pick out the quilting.  I took this picture before I started on it. 

Monday, July 20, 2015

Finally finished the June UFO.

July was off to a good start.

I finished my June UFO on July 2nd.  Better late than never.  I have been attempting to do a little analysis of why I have put projects away unfinished.

For this one I had the center of the quilt completed and all of the boarders sewn on.  The next step was to embroider the corner section of the text boarder and then embroider the snowflakes in the outer boarder.    So why did I stop?  When I look at what still needed to be done there was not that much, but this was the only the third project and I think I was worried about lining up the corners correctly.  However, once I pulled up the design I discovered that this designer had actually put in the line up lines in the design.  When I first started embroidering I didn't know what to look for.  I was able to spend several evenings stitching out a corner each evening but just did not get all the snowflakes embroidered before the end of June.  It feels really good to have finished another project.

This is my least favorite part of machine embroidery.  Takes me longer to take off the paper than to embroider.

hmm..why can't I figure out how to rotate this?

Oh well I have a picture at least.

I also got the Cat Weave quilted.  I still need to bind it.  I just did straight stitches on my home machine.  Gotta start somewhere with the quilting.

I am now working on July's UFO.

Monday, June 29, 2015

June did not go as expected.

The month of June has been hot...really really hot.

That is sort of unusual for the Pacific Northwest.  We usually say the summer starts around here on July 5th when the rain stops.  But we had a really dry winter and now a dry hot summer.

That translates into not a lot of sewing got done.  I also had one of my grandsons spend a week at my house when school got out.  He actually expected me to feed him occasionally.

I did sew it fits and starts.  But not a lot got completed.

Before the UFO number of the month was posted I made a mini quilt for my granddaughter.

It is called Cat Weave and it was from The Sewing Chick website.

I had bought a fat quarter bundle off Massdrop of the cat fabric and it was perfect for this project.

After we got the UFO number for the month I went looking for the project, which I finally found then I looked for the instructions which I did find a week later.   That project did not get finished this month.  I got so close.  I will get it finished, just not this month.

When I was not searching for items I did work on my flannel quilt and did get it sewn together.

So I did get something done.  Just not what I had planned on doing.  Now I will have to see if I can get July done.  But I have to tell you I am wishing for A/C it is so darned hot it is hard to sew.  I hope next month is not flannel.

Sunday, May 31, 2015

End of May, Really?

I can't believe that it is the end of May.  Where did it go?  I did get my UFO finished early in the month, but then never took a picture until today.  Nothing like a little procrastination in your life.  This quilt is one just because, I like the colors.  No real plans for it but I am sure it will be with me for a while.  It matches some pillows I have.  I bought it as a clearance kit a while back and I got all the way to the last boarder when I stopped working on it.  When I picked it up this month I remembered why - the outside boarder was to be cut the width of fabric, fussy cutting the design.  Of course the design was not printed straight.  Can you say waves in this boarder?

I also finished sewing down the binding on two quilts.

The first has been quilted for a year.  I hate to admit that but last summer was to hot to bind and then I got a little crazed on making gifts for Christmas last September and just keep putting this one off.  It is a disappearing four patch using Kate Spain fabrics.  Nice and bright for our gray winter days.

The second one is one I showed the quilting on in March.  Amazing right, finished within two months.  The top had been waiting to be quilted for a while.  Remember that crazed in daughter got sucked into my crazed behavior as my quilter, I kept her busy also.

Speaking of my daughter, I may have to learn to quilt.  For the last several years she has worked from home scoring sleep studies she is now going to be working outside the home 5 days a week.  (motivation was health insurance for the family, they can no longer afford to buy it on there own, it has gone up so much in price with the Affordable Care Act).  Anyway, even though she would work long hour they could be later in the evening and she could quilt in the light of day.  That is changing.  We will just have to see how her schedule works out and if she will get any quilting time.  And my darling husband is now the kid taxi.  He will be picking up her children after school and babysitting on non school days.  Can you say he is going to have a very busy summer?  Since he watches kids for both our daughters there will be some days that he has four children all day long.  Yes, four.  Right now they are 6, 5, 5 and 2.  Three will have birthdays in August and it will be 7, 6, 5 and 3. That will be Second grade, First grade, Kindergarten and pre-school in the fall.  The 2nd grader and kindergarten in one city and the 1st grader in another with 30 minute drive in between, if traffic is good.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Work gets in the way

I work in IT as a Quality Assurance Software Engineer and this month we had a major release.  I put in many long hours doing the month getting the testing completed for the release and then supporting the go live. I lead of team of 18 and we were stretched to the limit to get it all tested, even with the automated test suite that has been written.

Needless to say - had lofty goals that did not come to fruition.

The UFO for this month from 52 Quilts in 52 Weeks was #9.  My number 9 was to get all the blocks completed for the block of the month from 2012 from The Fat Quarter Shop.  I did not get them made into a quilt but today I did get the last block made and that was my goal for the month.  Since I bought this BOM late I did not get a finishing kit only the blocks so I am going to have to come up with a plan for the assembly now that I have them together.

I have loved the Vintage Modern fabric since the first time I saw it so I am happy to finally have these together.  I do have some other fabrics that I am going to audition to use for the finish.

I was disappointing that I did not get the binding sewn down on the quilt from last month but any progress is better than no progress.

It is almost the beginning of a new month and time to set new goals.  Maybe May will be better, June is not looking so good for getting much sewing done.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Past Quilts

Since I want to use this blog to record the quilts that I have made I am going to add a few old ones that I have given in previous years.

I have grandsons that love construction equipment.  So much so that for the last three years these boys have attended a local event called Dozer Days in which they can actual sit in and 'operate' big equipment.   If they go this year it will be four years in a row.  My daughters think that the interest is waning, I am not so sure.

This is the quilt that I made for each of the cousins.

That same year I also made a quilt for a grandson who is just a little older that was not interested in construction equipment.  For him I made an eye spy quilt, of sorts.  Not the traditional and because his mom really likes modern quilts I used gray as the sashing.

All three boys received there quilts for Christmas 2012.

That same year I gave my daughter in law a flannel Christmas quilt.

This was actually my first foray into flannel and I was worried about the fabric stretching but had no problems.  I do plan to eventually make a flannel quilt for myself.  I have a lot of quilts that I want to make.  And many already started, which is way I am currently working on UFO's.

Monday, March 30, 2015

March 2015

The March UFO # 4

This one had been kicking around my sewing room for a while and I am really glad to get it done.  It seems I was always moving it from one place to another.

A finish for a gift for one of my co-workers.  Baby was due earlier in the month and finally made an appearance on my husbands birthday last week.

Actually did finished two of these.  This one was given to a baby girl of one of my husbands ex-coworkers.

My daughter also quilted an older quilt top that I finished awhile ago.  This one is not finished yet but I love this shot of the quilting.  She had just unpinned it from her long arm, the light from the window really highlighted the quilting.  I still need to get it trimmed and the binding on and will take another picture when it is done.

I also took a machine embroidery class and worked on another project that I have finally finished all the blocks for.  Now I just need to get them all sewn together....a bigger project than that sentence makes it sound.

In addition to the above, I have been making binding for my daughters quilts and sewing them on for her.  I owe her big time for all the quilting she did for me last year.

Speaking of which - I almost forgot to include this photo.  I love to see my quilts put to good use.  These little darlings are my best friends grand children.  I made them quilts before Christmas.  There is nothing like a quilt fort.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

February 2015

February has been a very long month.  Not so much in days but in busyness and in the fact that I have been sick.

At the beginning of the month I started coughing.  No sore throat, no running nose.  I just started coughing.  A week later I did get a sore and runny nose.  This was the weirdest illness. After about 11 days I went to the doctor and was put on antibiotics.  I am not doing much better now.

In spite the fact that I was fighting the crud I did get some sewing done.  The first item was the #1 UFO.  It was a recent start so that was satisfying.  During the great Christmas sewing spree I had completed 2 Hungry Caterpillar quilts.  But I had cut out 3.  I have two grandsons that share a bedroom and my daughter wanted matching quilts.  One of the boys got one for Christmas and this month I got the other top sewn together.  I am afraid it is not a very good picture and it is not quilted yet but another top completed.

And since I seem to be on a Hungry Caterpillar roll I also did a baby gift for a co-worker.  I have to get this on quilted quickly.  His wife is due in Mid March.

It is so hard to take pictures this time of the year.

I think that what ever Hungry Caterpillar fabric I still have is getting donated somewhere.  I have completed a total of 6 quilts using this line.  That is enough.  I know I had always planned to make the youngest boys matching quilts but I had so much extra.  I am calling it quits.

I have been working a couple of other items but nothing else has been completed.  

Monday, January 26, 2015

2015 Goals

I have a large number of things I would like to do in 2015.

The first quilt I actually finished for the year was actually one that was in the stack from my last post.  I just needed to finish stitching down the binding.  It is a Bear Mountain Log Cabin.  The pieces are small and I completed the top years ago, I think six,  but just got it quilted this fall.  I have given this to my best friend.  Along with three quilts for her grand kids.

I have created a list of 12 UFO's for the year and will follow plan.

For the month of January that is #2.  That is an old one.  I do not even remember when the fabric was purchased.  It is a lap quilt made of flannel.  Snowball and 9 patch.  I have the top made and made the back.  It has now gone off to my daughter the quilter.

I am currently attempting to work on cleaning up my sewing space.  Before Christmas I worked feverishly getting 15 quilts completed between October and December.  That did not allow for clean up between projects.  I need to get organized now and clean up the mess.

I spend one of my weekends this month teaching a young woman that I work with how to piece a baby quilt.  We kept it simple.  A panel with a couple of boarders.  My daughter has quilted it for her now she will need to come back and learn how to put the binding on.

Because my daughter does so much of my quilting for me I often put boarders on her quilts and make quilt backs for her.  I did get two backs made for quilts for her this month.

I am now working on a baby quilt for one of my co-workers.  His wife is expecting a little boy in March so I had to get busy if I want to have it done before the baby is born.  Because he and his family are from India I keep rejecting fabric as something that might not translate culturally.

I have a long list of projects that I would like to get completed this year.  Many so close to being done it is sad that they have sat so long.  I am making progress slowly.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Where did 2014 go to?

I can't believe that it is already 2015.

The last few months of the year simple flew by.

I did however get a lot done.  I made and/or finished a stack of quilts.  In the last 3 months of the year.

You thought I was kidding didn't you?  These were all finished in December or November.  Unfortunately, I can't remember on all of them.   Most had the binding completed in December.

6 of the tops were finished by September.  The other 5 I made and finished between November and December.  It has all become a blur.

First let me show the ones that were actually flimsies and were quilted and bound in November.

This top was completed in July on 2013 and finally quilted and bound in November.  Given to my daughter-in-law.

I have no idea when I made this top.

I know I bought the fabric when Daisy Kingdom was going out of business...That was a really long time ago.  I think I made the top about 9 years ago.  It has sat waiting to be quilted that long.  Quilted and bound in Late November or Early December.  This one is going to a friends grandson.

Next up one I pieced last spring as one of my UFO's for the year.  Now quilted and bound.  This is actually going to a friends grand daughter.
I had the center of this next one completed during the summer.  I put a boarder on it in November.  It was quilted and bound in December.
This one was also on my UFO list for 2014.  The pattern is called Lemon bash.  I made a mistake when piecing it and was not going to rip it out so I just went with the error.  I know where it is and others might see it.  But the person who got this quilt will never know the difference.  I did not let the mistake stall me.

I made this next one for a little boy and needed something quick.  This was quick.

This next one I assembled the top in Late September.  It was quilted in early November and bound toward the end of the month.  This is where the insanity started.  It was after making this quilt that I decided to make a quilt for all 9 grand children.

I made two of this next one.  They were made for cousins.  I had this fabric for a few years and needed to get it done before the boys got to old.

I also made two of this pokey puppy quilt.  One for a grand child and one for my best friends grand child.  Another one that I had the fabric for a while and needed to use it up.
The next one was actually a collaboration between my daughter and myself.  It was one of her unfinished UFO's. I discovered on December 21st that our ex-foster granddaughter would be joining us for Christmas and needed another quilt so I finished this one and we got it done on Christmas.

The funny thing about this one is that she was the only one that was excited about getting another quilt. She loved the colors.

This next one was made for my 4 grand daughter.  It was also on the 2014 UFO finish list.  We and I do me we got it sewn together on Monday December 21st.  My daughter actually finished stitching down the applique so that she could get it quilted before she left town to go to her in-laws for Christmas.  I got it back from her on Tuesday to get it bound.  It was finished about 3am on Dec 26th.   Good think I had until the 27th for our Christmas celebration.

This quilt was made for my oldest grandson.  He like bridges.  So I made this quilt using Violet Crafts Waterfront park bridge fabric.  These are Portland Bridges and he has been across all of them on the Portland Bridge Peddle.  He has also visited them when he took a class at OMSI.  This quilt was inspired by one that I saw at the Sandy Quilt Show last June.  I wish I had taken note of the lady who made it so I could give her proper credit.   I have know idea how close mine is like hers because I made it from a memory.  I know that the colors are of course different.  My daughter did the quilting to look like waters.

This last quilt was actually made by my husband but I wanted to include it.  We took a class in November where this was started.  It started out a wall hanging but he made it bigger.  He then added the boarders and backed it with Minky.  He gave it to our son as he was the last of his family to get a minky backed quilt.  With the temps around here last week it was greatly enjoyed.

That is all but one of the quilts that are in the stack.  There is one more in the stack that I do not have a picture of yet.  I did not finish the binding until New years as the person it is going to is currently out of town and I had time.

Of all that I got done all but 3 pieces of fabric came from my stash.  I sure wish I noticed a difference in the amount of fabric I have.  

There are 15 quilts in the above stack.
4 of the above were on my 2014 UFO list.
2 had been tops for a while.
4 had been on my list to do before the kids got too old to like them any more.  

My daughter has made me promise that I will never decide in September/ October time frame that I need to make quilts for all the grand kids again.  If I had just done them for my own I might have been ok.  But then I did 3 for my best friends grand kids. 

This could not have been done without the help of my long arming daughter and the help of my husband who helped me get the quilts bound.  He bound 5 of mine and his own.

Needless to say my grand plans to work on Bonnie Hunters mystery quilt were put on hold as I finished all of these instead.

Did I mention that I work outside the home full time?