Avaland's (Lois) 2017 Projects
This is a continuation of the topic Avaland's 2016 Projects.
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Recent photo of adorable grandson who is now
>1 avaland: Let me be the first to say it. Awwww, so very adorable. :-}
What I'm doodling around with at the beginning of 2017 and what possessed me:
I keep piles of quilt books in various places (on the floor next to the bed, beside my reading chair...etc and one day was browsing though the 1998 book, Scrap Quilts: The Art of Making Do by Roberta Horton. The book features many simple vintage scrap quilts and some modern versions (well, 1990s modern). There was one vintage quilt featured that I was smitten by (will post below), which I do intend to make some day. It's an 1890 wild goose chase as above, but done with white. I'm fairly certain it's pieced the same way, but the quilting done on it does suggest something else.
However, this day, I got to thinking that I wanted to use more of my scraps than the white version allows for, and in the blick of an eye found a paper pieced pattern on the internet and off I went.
Four 6.5 inch sub blocks makes the 12 inch finished block (the x formation). The paper-piecing allows for me to use uncut scrap pieces, although I have used squares, cut on the diagonal for the "white" bit (really a mix of white, cream....etc) and have been cutting some of my stash of 5 inch squares in half diagonally for the larger corner triangles. As I mentioned on the last thread I can make a sub block in about 20 minutes, but I rarely make more than 3 or 4 at a sitting.
The blocks shown would measure 3 x 5 ft. NOW, my question is do I make this a lap quilt by adding 2 feet to the width (another 40 sub blocks) OR make a more useful twin-sized quilt which take another 80 sub blocks? I do have to print out a paper template for each sub-block.
I'm also thinking of making one of these wild goose chase quilts (perhaps with the pattern enlarged) using the vintage fabric squares from my grandmother (mostly salvaged while she lived with us, so 50s - 70s) and the scraps from all the clothing and quilts I've made (late 60s to present...yes, I've kept bits). I like the idea of making a quilt with all these memory fabrics but sadly it probably could not include all the special occasion fabrics (I guess that would be another quilt). I've also thought of printing out photos of the outfits and quilts and doing something with that on the back. Still thinking....
Like my reading, I don't plan ahead...
I like your design ideas. And of course Oliver is adorable! And looking like quite the little boy now, more than a baby.
Indeed an adorable grandson. He looks so mature for his age... must be very clever!
I'm always amazed at how quickly you work, especially on something like the flying geese.
I love the idea of a special memory quilt from those truly special fabrics. Then there could be a '60s quilt and on and on. What fun!
Oliver has certainly grown! You must get so much joy from being with him.
I am always drawn to designs such as the wild goose chase (now I know what to call it!) but the paper piecing is not something I have tackled yet, and to do all those small triangles otherwise might just do my head in! But I am loving the colours in your quilt. It is so vibrant.
>5 lauralkeet:, >6 SassyLassy:, >7 judylou: Thanks, all. re: Oliver. He's a bit of a scamp, thinks he's quite funny at times. He's been slow to talk but seems to be catching up now. He's quite the explorer, too. We do adore him.
>6 SassyLassy: Quick? Oh, the flying geese blocks don't feel quick, but perhaps they are and making them just feels mechanical to me at this point. I'd like to stop at a lap quilt size and move on to other things but how many lap quilts can one have, you know? A twin size would be more practical.
>7 judylou: I made a lot of mistakes when I first did paper-piecing as it's done kind of in reverse, plus I had the additional challenge of being left-handed. I like it for areas where there are small triangles. I suspect a wild choose chase could be done by making the rows of small triangles separately each row with a corner square and then they could be sewn around a large square...but they wouldn't be on point in the way this one is.
>9 thornton37814: Thank you!
>10 scaifea: He is and last weekend he used the word "mine!" for the first time. LOL. I looked at his mother and said, "Now it begins...."
IT looks like I'm going to go for the twin-sized quilt. I feel the urge to move on, but I have the paper-piecing process down to a mechanical efficiency, so I've been trying to get a block done each time I'm in the studio. I've had to stop to cut more of the larger triangles and refill my basket of suitable small scraps. My brain is always racing ahead with ideas when a project gets to that mechanical efficiency level.
Did I mention I have joined a quilt group? The decision was between three: 1. a large group 20 miles south where I know a few of the members from my volunteering at the quilt museum. 2. a small group about 10 miles north and 3. a large group about 12 miles south. I debated and debated, and finally decided to try the small group, which is even a bit smaller since they are somewhat divided between a day and an evening meeting. Because they are small (about 60 total) they function differently. One can get to know the whole group well, I think, but they don't have the resources to have frequent notable speakers. I've been a reclusive in this area so long and enjoying going my own way, so speakers don't interest me as much as just being around creative people.
At my first, two hour (day) meeting in December they took care of some business, had a show and tell (my favorite part), and then did a little craft project. It was the December meeting so there were refreshments and they exchanged loaded Mason jars. The group reminded me very much of the groups my mother used to be in. To be quite honest, I wasn't entirely comfortable with that many people stuffed in the room, but it's probably because I'm new. The group seemed to have a variety of interests and abilities. After the meeting someone invited those interested to go to lunch, and I chose to do that. It was an interesting group (and they were talking about the books they read at one point). In the January meeting they...er, we...will be working on "Fidget Quilts" which are lap quilts with various embellishment or accoutrements for dementia patients to fiddle with. I do not have a portable sewing machine, but I will bring stuff that can be used in the projects. We will see how that goes. I don't mind working on projects like that or "comfort quilts" that are donated to the hospitals or shelters, but I don't really want to do little crafts., and I'm not sure I want to buy a portable machine at the moment. I liked the women and the banter (on a table-scale), and, as noted before, I like to be around creative people, so we shall see. I do worry about the activities taking away from my own quilting/sewing (which, like reading, is a big part of how I recharge myself, introvert that I am). I may also try their evening meeting and see how it is different.
Have any of you experience with craft groups?
I've tried 2 over my quilting career. The one which was closest to me always had a waiting list because of the size of the hall they rented (fire dept limits) so I ended up joining one that was only about 25 miles away but took almost 45 minutes to get to. I liked that group a lot. They would have show-and-tell, sometimes a speaker, usually some light refreshments. Sometimes when there was a speaker, they would have a class the following day, but since I was still working, I never got to do that. I also think they used to meet separately to work on their charity quilts. I ended up leaving the group because it was difficult for me to get there on time after work and I often didn't go in the winter. **
When I finally came up the list for the group closer to me, I only went to a couple of meetings before I decided it wasn't for me. Just didn't get the right jibe from the group.
There is one more group that will be about 1/2 hour from me once I move and I'm may try that group out.
**One time, they had a local quilter give a show of her quilts at the meeting and she did the show in her bathrobe and slippers. I can't remember why now, but she was a hoot!
I tried a guild; but the group was huge. Much too big for me. I like the idea of guilds and creative groups...but then I remember that means people. I exhaust my social skills at work. Plus, I have a habit of talking to myself through my entire project...whatever the project. That tends to annoy or spook people.
>12 dudes22: Thanks, that gives me a broader sense of the variety in groups. Will be interested to hear what the new group is like when you get there. I was very tempted to go to the group where I know some of the people, but 20 miles seemed like a long way to go in the dark and in the winter.... and I feel I need to make connections here in this area.
>13 lesmel: I do know what you say about "people."
>11 avaland: Interesting discussion around the perils and pleasures of group crafting.
I belong to two rug hooking groups. One is very small and informal. We meet in each others' houses once a week during the day on an informal rotation. Over the last couple of years, there are new members who don't even hook, so we now have knitters, quilters and embroiderers, so I guess the group is more about community. We do discuss ideas about what we are doing a lot, especially around colour planning and theory and learn from each others skills. Most of us also do some of our own designing. It's an enjoyable day out once a week to just sit and chat and work with friends.
The second group is a branch of a provincial guild and meets about 20 miles away in the evening, twice a month, except July and August. This is more difficult to get to because of nasty winter night time travel. Since it is part of a guild, we bring in instructors once or twice a year for techniques or projects that are of interest to the group. There are two larger regional meetings each year, with a speaker and vendors. We are also able to participate in the guild's annual provincial meeting, which is always interesting as it gives an opportunity to see what members from other regions are doing. This group at my local level seems more interested in just getting things done, without thinking about how or why, and is more inclined to use commercial projects. I don't seem to be as actively involved in this group as I used to be, preferring the informal atmosphere of my local group.
As an aside, two of the members of my informal group are avid quilters, belong to a guild, go to classes and also away to schools and workshops, and seem to love their interactions with their guild and the workshops away.
>15 SassyLassy: Very interesting. I remember you talking about your larger group before. That group sounds very much like the larger quilt groups around here. I think I'm looking for something like your small, informal group; or a group like this one only local! Perhaps I will have to create one. Meanwhile, I'll see how it goes.
As per usual, while I work on one project, others continue to percolate in my head:
1. I need a new holiday tree skirt and I thought I might do a Victorian crazy quilt style one; which means hauling out all those bins once again. Not sure my hand is up to embroidery these days, but it might be good to have some hand work to do to some audio books. And I'd incorporate some bits of fabric from the special occasion sewing I've done and some of the old embroidery from my maternal ancestors before it is lost to time.
2. UFOs. I have a few UFOs in large pizza boxes (new boxes that were bought from a pizza place, they stack wonderfully). I really want to either finish them or donate them or just cut them up and throw the bits in the scrap bins. I've been good about recycles leftover and sample blocks lately.
3. The Kaffe Fassett quilt I had up on the design wall last year needs to be done. I've received the extra piece of grid flannel to "extend" my design wall, I just need to get a piece of ridged insulation to staple it to. The quilt will incorporate a piece of nearly every KF fabric I've intentionally collected over the years. Then I will feel that I can release the rest of the fabric into the wild, so to speak. I just like to look at it piled up on the shelf or fondle it....
4. Another quilt I want to make, in scrap quilt form, is one that incorporates scraps from every quilt I have ever made, and some of the clothing I have made for myself or my children over the years. I would also add some bits of my favorite fabrics. My fabric tells stories, don't you know?! I thought about doing one side with the fabrics, the other side with photos of the kids in the outfits, or the quilts, or the pattern envelope (for the dresses)(yes, I kept all the patterns back to about '68 or so, when I made my first dress). Although, I also have thought about putting the fabric near the photo and making it one of my crazy scrap quilts. And I have also thought about one with just the fabrics in a more traditional pattern....
5. I've told my oldest daughter that if she and her husband pick out a design & colors, I'd make them a king size quilt.
6. And nevermind that I look through Jinny Beyer's quilt block encyclopedia just for fun on a regular basis....which is very, very dangerous.
>16 avaland: Writing all those project ideas down sent me off several directions at once. I pulled down buckets and rifled through them, washed and or ironed old fabrics....
Funny you should mention a tree skirt - my sister has the one I made for my parents years ago , and it's one thing I've never made for myself but was thinking about when I put up my tree this year.
Those are quite a lot of projects, but we all seem to want to do more. Knowing I'll be unable to quilt for a few months has me chomping at the bit all the more.
Love that quilt! I hope the quilt group works out. It is tough being new. I was only saved in new local bookclub because I immediately bonded with the two leaders and we've had coffee meetings several times since (and the number of members at meetings varies a lot).
>18 dudes22: I always have more ideas than I ever have time for, and have three or four ideas bouncing around in my head while I'm working on the current one. The move will give you a chance to think out your sewing space from the ground up though, and once settled in, you can be off to a nice start!
>19 mabith: Thanks. I like it, too. I'm going to see how it goes with the group. I like to find a few talented people I can hang with (in person).
Update on Quilt Group:
I went to my 2nd meeting where we were supposed to be making "fidget lap quilts." Whereas my sewing is not set up for travel, I decided I would just bring supplies for everyone else. Turns out, only a few brought machines, most did what I did (or came with one already made-up) and after all the other business, there wasn't time anyway. Once again, they discuss business & various upcoming events, did show & tell, and presented a joint activity some were doing (row...something, maybe "row robin"?)) where participants did a row of a small quilt, then each month it passes to another participating person who does another row for it (following the originator's parameters, and sometimes using her fabric. One person brought in previous quilts done like this, and then each current participant showed their first rows and talked about their themes (one was dogs, another Autumn, yet another was for her grandchildren...and so on). I do very much enjoy seeing all these projects though I think I would be unlikely to participate. Maybe only half were participating. During the show 'n tell, I did show the recently finished quilt made out of tiny half square triangles, and the unfinished Autumn scrap quilt shown on a previous thread. Before we left, someone offered me more little triangles! (which I politely declined).
Afterwards, five of us went out to lunch, which I enjoyed because it's a bit more intimate and I can get to know individuals. The fidget quilts are going to either the hospice house or another care facility, there are some who at the moment are making cat beds for a shelter, and the group has a sub-group who works on "comfort quilts" which are given to those who are in need of...comfort.
I admit that I almost had myself talked out of going to this meeting and only decided an hour before. I think it will get easier, and it seems my fear that it would interfere with my own sewing, is somewhat unfounded, although there are quite a few who seems to prefer to sew together.
Interesting description of your experience with the new group. I belong to two quilting groups here. One is a more traditional group. The people there are not very friendly but I enjoy the speakers that they have every month and there are workshops that they have with quilters from elsewhere. (i.e. Sujata Shah, Victoria Findlay Wolfe, Kathy Doughty) Additionally there is a big show every other year. And 2017 is the year.
And then there is the modern quilt guild, with mostly younger members. They have workshops also but at every meeting there are different exercises, projects, etc. I've found that there are so many different things going on, I have to carefully pick which ones so that I have time to do my own things, on my own.
Each one also has charity projects - the woman's shelter, the VA, etc. One person collects all of our scraps that she uses to stuff cat beds that she makes for the local animal shelter. There's also the Linus Project for children quilts. And just today I gave two quilts to a local group that is having an on-line auction, on FB, to raise money to care for feral cats.
>22 catarina1: Hey Cat, thanks for stopping by, and thanks for input. While volunteering at the New England Quilt Museum, I had many discussions with quilters about their groups. And it seemed that many, like yourself, were in more than one group. I have thought about joining a 2nd, large group (very much like the traditional group you describe above). I know some of the members at one that is about 20 miles from my house, but then I got to thinking about driving in the winter in the dark.... (and no one seems to meet in the summers). There is another large group about 12 miles south and I'm still thinking about it....
I don't mind taking some time out to make a baby or "comfort" quilt because I have made quilts for a variety of causes on my own, so...not a leap there, though I do find it tough to switch gears when I have a couple of projects of my own ongoing.
And on that note, the paper-pieced wild goose chase quilt (pictured in message #3) continues to grow. I'm going to make it 5 x 7 ft, that's 140 sub-blocks, 35 large blocks. I think I have 28/7 to go... I've used scraps for the smaller pieces but have had to cut fabric to have enough of the larger triangles (I can do it with a half triangle from a 5 inch square but it's tricky).
I have finished piecing and assembling the Wild Goose Chase quilt. I debated the idea of a border and decided against it. It's 5 x 7 feet. I like the pattern and may, at some point, make another with less color, more white/off-white....
After ironing this and setting it aside, I immediately started sewing scraps together. I already had 220 scrap squares made for another scrappy quilt, so I added another 20 to the total. I need about 60 more to make a queen-sized quilt.
And then there is my UFO Challenge project. And I have the flannel for the design wall extension (I just need to fetch some rigid insulation to staple it to), so I can work on the Kaffe Fassett fabrics quilt. And then there's....
and on it goes.
>24 avaland: That almost made me want to take up quilting (as though I needed more things on my plate). The quilt is really beautiful.
"and on it goes". . . I know that so well. It's like a disease but a good one.
I love flying geese but so many of them can get really arduous. Love your quilt.
That's really nice, Lois. I've been having withdrawal from not being able to quilt as most everything is packed and there's no room anyway. I've had a couple of flying geese ideas for quilts and seeing yours has me wanting to try one of them.
>25 Lyndatrue: Thanks. The solution for you, you know, is to get a bigger plate. Hee hee
>26 catarina1: Thanks, Cat. It is true that there are much worse obsessions and habits I could have (though I probably have some of those, too -- baking is one)
>27 dudes22: Thanks, Betty. When is the move scheduled? I hope for your sake it's soon!
Today, I'm working on scrap squares. It shouldn't take me long to sew together enough for the queen-sized quilt. Then I could drop off two quilt tops with Cheryl the Quilter. Then I could move on to the UFO project (see UFO thread) and any number of other projects.
Hey, I just had my glasses updated and I had them adjust the near-focus, not to the standard 18" from your face but closer. I hold my books and close needlework closer than that 18" so I was always putting my glasses on top of my head...and now I don't! It's working out great.
Not exactly sure. Even once the house is finished there will be some stuff to do before we can move in. I'm thinking sometime in April.
>29 dudes22: That makes for a long winter! Have you already packed up the machine? What about a precut kit?
It's not my machines as much as it is all the other stuff you need. Plus there really isn't a place to set the machine up - my dining room table always has something on it waiting to be packed, etc. I was originally thinking I might get some labels on quilts that are already done, but even that isn't happening. When I get a few minutes, I'm just reading for now.
Quick baby quilt top I put together today. It's for the quilt guild's contribution to "The Stork Project." I have enough leftovers that, with a bit more cut, should make a second top. I didn't fuss much with this. It looks random but there is a pattern, sort of.
That's cute, Lois. What size does it finish to? IS it ne of those ones where the block pieces are the same but twisting the block gives you a different pattern?
Thanks, all. I made two tops. I'm dragging my feet about layering it (and will probably quilt it myself as they are donations).
Meanwhile, I finished all the scrap squares needed (mentioned in #28 above) for the queen-sized quilt AND started another batch (it's like an itch that needs scratching).
And yesterday I got out the plastic bin with the fabrics my Nana salvaged and played around with ideas of how to use them (I'm not going to live forever, you know).
I thought about the square within a square pattern but that really begs for lights and darks, not mediums. I enlarged the wild goose chase pattern from the quilt top I just finished but found the triangles not big enough to showcase the fabric....
After overthinking it, I decided I'd just do half square triangle blocks and figure out a pattern with them after.
Here's some of the 4 in squares... some in the collection have been pieced by hand, others have been salvaged from garments and have a seam through them, some are clearly shirting fabric and feedsacks, at least three I recognized from dresses my mother made for herself.
Am I trying to do too much at once? Yes. Probably. (I haven't forgotten the UFO project either)
If you wanted to add a plain fabric (either white/cream or black), you could probably do square in a square and the fabrics would stand out being separated a bit. You do seem to like those HSTs.
>39 avaland: Ohmygosh, I love those fabrics! I can't wait to see your finished project there.
And oh, yeah, the UFO. Haven't touched mine yet, either. Gah.
(I'm not going to live forever, you know) Oh dear... I thought the stashes were a kind of insurance, sort of like the TBR piles!
Lovely fabrics in the 4" squares.
>40 dudes22: I did think about doing the square within a square using the squares and a natural muslin, but many of the squares lean towards the light, so ....
>41 scaifea: I love some of them, but I am glad we have evolved, too.
>42 SassyLassy: Oh surely you must be younger than I to still hold on to that thought!
Here is my plan for the fabrics my Nana & mom salvaged. I originally thought I might get my own old fabric (from sewing clothing, mine & my children's) in the same quilt as it makes kind of a continuum, but I have plenty of the antique squares for a decent lap-sized quilt. I will be fussing with these a bit more (for example, there are two light-colored prints in that inner square which need to be moved). I always remind myself that the quilting will bring it together.
I have to test the fabrics before using them: When I first got these, I made two quick, tied quilts with most of the squares, adding some icky early 80s stuff to it. When the one my son had got washed a few times one of the yellow prints disintegrated! Eventually, I took apart that quilt and, once again, salvaged the pieces.
>43 avaland: That shows your lovely fabrics off beautifully. What patience you must have!
>43 avaland: Whoa! That's a whole lotta HST! I love the uniqueness (that's really not the word I'm looking for) of the printed fabrics. They are all different values.
This is the block from the latest quilt I've started, made entirely from batiks. It uses some of my scraps and some of my stock (I avoided batiks with the real dark designs in them). It's a bit out of focus.
I had just finished cutting all the pieces when the bookstore called me*. I did manage to assemble this first block the other day. It's going to be a booger to get all those points to match.
I still have the pieces of the vintage fabric quilt up on the design board. I was making too many mistakes and having to pick out the seams, so I thought I should take a break from it.
*we spent three days scanning every book in the store in order to create a new inventory (old DOS-based computer program crashed last fall, no backup, so it had to be recreated). And I've been stuck there ever since because everyone needs to relearn how to do everything on the new software.
That one is going to be bee-yoo-tee-full! I really love the color combinations on it. Pity I don't have the vision of my youth, though. I'm sure it's even more remarkable than I can see.
>50 Lyndatrue: Thanks. I think that's a 16" block. It calls for lights and darks (as so many patterns do) but I sneak in the mediums anyway. I used all colors except the very muddy, dark batiks, and those with dark patterns in them.
>51 thornton37814: Thanks!
I'm trying not to overthink it, but I do try to be mindful of not using too many of the same batiks in the same block.
I was wondering when I first saw the block how big it was. 16" will make up quick to a quilt. I was thinking as I packed up my batiks that I should find a pattern and use some of them.
Love your quilts - must show my daughter next time I see her. I'm not much of a quilter myself but she does a bit when she has time.
>53 dudes22: Ah, but there are 49 pieces in each block. There is some tedium in having to mark a majority of the 2 1/2 squares with a diagonal sewing line on the back, but it's survivable. I like that it's a scrappy batik, even if I did have to seriously break into my stash (I didn't have that many batik scrap pieces)
>54 justmum: Thanks.
I've managed five blocks for the batik quilt, seen here laid out on the floor. This photo is on its side, but you get the idea. I think I said before that there are 49 pieces in each 16 inch block. I had to make "emergency" trips to two quilt shops to pick up some more batiks so it would add a wee bit more variety. I haven't done any blocks this week but I have managed to cut and sort more pieces. The center block is a "dark" block, the others are "light" blocks (based on the center square of each).
>55 avaland: It's just amazing! I'm always impressed by quilting. I have no real skills in that area, and I'm positive I lack the attention span necessary, but you make it look easy. I'm not fooled, though. The colors and the combinations and patterns are just wonderful.
New software... always a challenge getting people going on it. I don't envy you.
Where I am envious of is your skill in lining up all those points and corners. That is going to be a lovely quilt. I like the way the horizontals and verticals set off the diamonds. Then there are the gorgeous fabrics. I know it is early days, but do you have any ideas yet how it will be quilted?
>56 Lyndatrue: I'm glad I've managed to make it look easy...LOL, because some of it is indeed easy but I ripped out more than one seam to get those points to meet (I'm not a perfectionist, but they had to be very close).
>57 SassyLassy: See note above re those points. I don't like ripping seams out. I have generally tried to stay away from very dramatic batiks. That sunflower-like print in the lower right was just too lovely to ignore though. I will probably leave this quilt with Carla the Quilter, who will probably do a freehand overall feather pattern, but I have plenty of time to change my mind.
That's coming along very nicely! I am so missing sewing right now. Hopefully not too long now. We should be closing before month-end and then I get to unpack! I have been pinning a lot of ideas on Pintrest which only has me wanting to quilt even more. Hubby gave me a new quilt pattern book at Christmas and I want to start one of the patterns so much.
When they first started talking about this storm as a coastal storm, we were hearing 20-30" for us on the coast. Thankfully the snow/rain line has changed and we're now only supposed to get 6-10.
We got around 18" of dense snow. Something changed during the storm so the snow was not as dry and thus it affected the totals.
We "lucked" out and the snow changed to rain early. So instead of the 20-30" they were talking about at the beginning of this storm (days ago), we only got 4.5" officially. But very wet and heavy. Changed over to downpours and very windy.
>64 dudes22: Glad you lucked out!
Progress! This is 16 of 30 blocks. You might notice that the lower left block is screwed up (it has been fixed). I didn't notice it until I looked at the photo! LOL.
The tiniest distraction and I can put some part of the 49 pieces in wrong!
Today, I alternated working on the batik quilt with working on the much neglected vintage fabric quilt. I'm about 3/4 of the way through putting that one together. Trying to finish up some projects so I can have binding to do when I'm icing away the 2nd knee replacement (some time around the end of May).
>65 avaland: It's just so beautiful! I'm a sucker for the old-fashioned look, and this one could have come out of my grandmother's linen closet.
I finally got a moment to finish that last block and here are 25 of the blocks laid out on the queen-sized guest bed, the 6th row is hanging on the footboard.
Wonderful and what an amazing job balancing colours. Love those occasional pops of red.
Thanks, Judy. Now I have the challenge of sewing those blocks together and hoping all those seams will match.
>76 avaland: I'm sure that what you do with the finished blocks will be as lovely as what we see on the bed in your photos.
>77 Lyndatrue:, >78 justmum:, >79 mabith: Thanks, Ladies.
>79 mabith: Actually, it's not slated to go to anyone. Believe it or not, at this point in my life, I've actually made quilts for most of the people one would do so for: friends (at least the ones who are not quilters), family, and a fair number of donations, so now in the last year or so, I've started to make quilts on a whim. I do have another of my random scrap quilts to assemble for a friend (although she IS a quilter), and have offered to make another larger quilt for my oldest daughter (but she is otherwise distracted and hasn't concretely responded). I'm enjoying the freedom of making them solely for my own pleasure—the problem there is that it has opened floodgates and I am overwhelmed with quilts I want to do! Currently, I have on in the works:
1. Finish the batik quilt and send off
2. Finish the vintage fabric quilt and send off
3. Send off the paper-pieced quilt I did a while back.
4. Do something with the two baby quilt tops I did for the "Stork Project"
5. Assemble the 300+ 6 -inch blocks of the queen-sized "random scrap" quilt
6. Do something with that batik UFO I've mentioned on the UFO thread
7. Get back to the Kaffe Fassett fabric squares quilt if I'm not already distracted by something new....
I'm currently doing PT for a neck/shoulder injury so am on light duty (very frustrating) and the other knee gets replaced May 23rd, so I'd like to have some hand-binding work to do during that time.
I'm also exploring making a stand-up sewing table, so I can take breaks from the somewhat hunched over position at the current "sitting" sewing table. This neck thing has scared me a bit so if any of you have thought about this or stand to sew, I'd be interested in your thoughts about tables, ideal powering (foot, knee, button).
Looks to me like #s 3 & 4 are good candidates for the quickest hand sewing while in recovery projects.
Not sure how the stand up sewing would make much of a neck difference. Even the ones for regular desk work still have your neck at a slight downward angle. It's also the shoulder-elbow-hand angle. raising it up for your neck would probably change that dynamic also. Ask your physical therapist about it. even if they aren't a quilter, you might get an idea from them. Even while reading my neck tends to be at a slight downward angle I notice.
(See how I used they & them as a singular? I was reading an article the other day about how that is becoming acceptable and thought I'd try it. The article was talking about gender identity and writing a newspaper article and other ways to write around the he/she normal singular third person. Not sure how I feel about it.)
>80 avaland: I like the idea of a stand-up sewing table. I do more and more things standing up these days, as we are all being encouraged to stop sitting for such long periods. I have done desk work standing up for some time. Thinking about powering, it occurs to me that using your knee could put you out of alignment as you exert pressure laterally, possibly twisting your pelvis as you lean against the power point, especially as you probably won't have the opportunity to alternate knees. The button could work, but may get tiring very quickly. I like the idea of a foot power source, as you can still distribute your weight and alternate feet. Can you make your table rise and lower, so that if you want to sit for awhile you can?
I like the idea of giving a quilt to a quilter! Often people assume that because we do something ourselves, if we wanted an item we would have made it, but often the person who gives us something has a different approach/ colour eye/ you name it and it is treasured both for that and the friend who made it.
Hand appliqué might also work during recovery time, although I don't recall you doing any, so may be of little interest.
>81 dudes22: The problem with the baby quilts is, because they are charity projects, I would probably machine quilt those myself and progress on this neck/shoulder thing is disappointingly slow.
Thanks for the feedback re: standing. I am aiming to sew standing with less of a neck bend but one certainly can't place one's sewing eye level! My therapist thought I might try bar height. My thought is that I could do some of the rote sewing standing on a simple machine.
>82 SassyLassy: I haven't done hand appliqué or embroidery for maybe 10 years so so.
I am putting together a scrap quilt for a friend who is another reclusive quilter. She made a Seminole style quilt out of some of her mother's clothes after her mother passed. They're building a retirement house and I thought she might like a quilt with less emotion attached to it.
Update on standing sewing situation:
I think the table is going to be an adjustable height workbench from Home Depot, although I had hoped to not spend that much $.
I'm hoping to look into another machine very soon. I would love it to be compatible with my lovely Elna (so I can use the same bobbins, or at least the bobbin winder—I've become truly spoiled by that feature).
Scrounging around on the old threads on this group site, I discovered I joined this group at the beginning of 2007, and it looks as if Amber joined that year also. We might be the only survivors from that era. The group was dying, abandoned by its creator, and if there is one thing I've learned here on LT, is that one does have to WORK to keep a group going. Obviously, Amber & I have had a need for a supportive group of crafty people to hang with.
Lots of people have come and gone. I'm a bit bummed that many don't post unless they themselves have produced something; and if they haven't, they don't bother with the group. More about validation than two-way support, I suppose, and FaceBook does that much better. But hat's off to those of you who are here conversing with and supporting group members when you aren't posting your own work (though we'd love to see it) or are on a temporary hiatus from projects. Where else can one hang with bookish, creative people?!
Although I've been a member on LT since 2008, I never thought about looking for a "crafts" group here until someone mentioned it in their thread in another group. Then I lurked until the beginning of the next year (which was last year).
I think we all tend to undervalue the effect our comments can have, both in back-and-forth and inspiration and just in brightening a day. I definitely appreciate the community.
>85 avaland: Wow, I didn't realize I'd been in this group that long! Yoicks. I do love it here, though, and I love seeing what eveyone is working on. Thanks so much, Lois, for keeping it going!
Lois, you recruited me to this group twice and I really appreciate it. The first time I was getting back into needlepoint but that didn't really "stick" and then you reminded me of the group when I became addicted to knitting. I'm so glad you did!
Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! When I read your post this am that said the fabric should be here Thursday, I got all excited. Then I went out to do errands and when I stopped at the PO to pick up our mail, I was ecstatic to see a package with your return address. This was way above what I expected and I can't wait to start sorting and cutting this afternoon. I'm putting away the scraps for now. If I can ever return the favor, just ask. I know you like fat quarters and I have a bunch. (I'm posting a picture over on my thread.
You are very welcome. My fabric cup runneth over so I don't mind sharing. Enjoy!
Well, here it is SUMMER and my neck injury still plagues me. There is a bit of progress since the injection. I have better range of motion and have been able to do a few "normal" things for short periods of time before I have to retreat. Still very frustrating.
However, I have managed to sew two of the long seams on the batik quilt pictured in #69. Just one more to go and it will be ready for a quilter.
The quilt with the vintage fabric in #43 will be the next one I finish. 3 quarter rows are left, then the assembling of the four pieces.
The quilts have piled up and I need to get them to quilters!
I noticed yesterday while puttering that I have quite a pile of leftovers from the batik quilt—2.5 inch squares and 2.5 x 4.5 inch rectangles—so I may put those together into little blocks.
I had my husband drive me over to the quilt guild's big BBQ so I could drop off the quilt tops pictured in #32 for someone else to finish for "The Stork Project." I also had some donations for their auction that day (raises money for the group's expenses). The house was noisy, filled with women, and it really looked like it was going to be a fun day but I knew—at least at that time—the neck would not let me enjoy it. It seems they will be meeting over the summer (most quilt groups don't) so I will try to get to the evening meetings as I'm doing the restock ordering at the bookstore on the Friday mornings they meet.
That's my update and because every wordy post needs a photo, here's an update of the rascal Oliver, who is now over two (26 months):
Here he is at "Friendly Farm," probably running from the goats:
"I'm working," he told his mother, both of whom (one or the other, but usually mom) have to work from home when he's sick. They let him bang on this dead laptop.
>93 judylou: Thank you, he is awfully cute. It's hard to say no to him....
Not much is happening in the creative realm for me. I have made a few sachets filled with either lavender or balsam for the quilt group's tables at a local Pumpkin Festival and a holiday craft fair. I've managed to finish and iron—in 15 minutes intervals—the quilt top made with my Nana's (vintage) fabric. This means I now have 4 quilts waiting to be quilted (and have I called anyone?....no.) And I hope to finish putting together that queen-sized scrappy quilt and iron it.
The neck/arm issue is not yet resolved. Surgery is in the future now, but first I have to have allergy tests (I'm allergic to nickel but have never been officially tested, so the doc wants to make it official. Meanwhile he has to research whether there are nickel-free parts available for the neck (my knee is titanium). It's been a 6 month saga now.
Assembled, but not yet quilted:
Not sure I've actually measured this, but it's around 5 x 5 ft.
Love the quilt. How wonderful to have your Nana's fabric around. Wish I did. Both my parents and grandparents always threw everything out.
That's a great quilt, Lois. I'm planning an HST quilt similar to that except offset. When I'll actually start it is a different story.
ETA: How many different prints did you have?
>97 catarina1: Thanks. I imagine my Nana threw some things out, but she was used to making use and reuse of everything. We are talking through WWI, the Depression & WWII...it's a lifetime habit she (and my mother) never really outgrew.
>98 dudes22: Thanks, Betty. I'm not sure why I've been attracted to this particular arrangement of half square triangles, except that it works well for random scrap fabrics. I have no idea how many different fabrics are in there. There is about 170 triangles, many were used twice, perhaps more. I actually cut up a few aprons to add a few more prints (my mother would save the ratty old aprons she had originally made to use as patterns for the new ones (she also saved mittens, hats, outgrown knitted sweaters, again, to keep the patterns..
So sorry your neck/arm issues aren't better. It's so hard with chronic ailments and waiting waiting waiting to figure things out. The quilt is lovely!
Lovely quilt.... I just love scrappy and to be able to include your Nana's fabrics is really something special.. hope the arm improves enough so you can get some quilting done... my worst nightmare is not to be able to sew or read!
Hope your neck and shoulder is doing better. It is hard to live with pain like that.
I am definitely going to make one like it.
(oo, I was so excited I had messages on my thread!)
>102 primlil:; 103 Thanks!. Allergy tests are over and official so they'll throw the ball back to the orthopedic people and hopefully there will be progress the towards surgery. The sooner the better. I sit to avoid taking pain meds but I'm feeling the negative effects of the sitting :-(
Excited to have a message - maybe - but when I read back my message even I have trouble understanding it LOL!!
I believe I was trying to say I am intending to make a quilt similar to your beautiful HST quilt in #96. I like the process of HST's (even with all that trimming) and I love the variety of patterns you can create with a variety of blocks.
>105 judylou: There is indeed a lot of trimming. I'm not a perfectionist but the queen of fudge, so I tend to fly fast and loose :-)
Not exactly a fabric project, but this project was slated to be one of my 2017 projects. That was before the neck injury, so I paid a professional to hang the paper.
Not sure lighting in this photo is the best, but this is the dining area. Eventually we will replace the flooring with a stone gray motif, but not immediately. The white bits have a gloss on them, so reflect the light a bit.
This is the back of the galley kitchen, and the wall you face as you come in the front door. You may notice that the paper was chosen to compliment the sunflower yellow of the front room (which in this photo looks more yellow than orange-yellow), and purply-red rag roll of the "hub" (currently being used for the dining area). This was the first wall I wanted done, and more recently I chased down more paper for the adjacent room.
PS: Neck surgery on the 30th! I am trying to put the rows together for a large queen-sized scrap quilt. It's slow-going.
Good luck with the surgery. Hope the recovery is swift!
I love wallpaper. There are so many beautiful ones around at the moment. Unfortunately, our house does not suit it, so I enjoy seeing how others use it. Such a happy pattern on yours! I love that you are not scared of using strong colours on your walls. Many people are, and the beige walls can become a bit boring.
I love your house so much! It gave me confidence to choose a bright orange (with a lovely medium reddish purple on a couple small walls) for my bedroom. Most of the rest of the house has grey walls, which does go with everything, but I'm feeling a desire to inject some more color here.
Thanks! They painter/wallpaper guy told me that "everyone" is going with more saturated colors these days; it used to be all Navajo or linen white, he said. I think he might have been lightly grousing that saturated colors sometimes take more than 2 coats (the magenta in the previous house, put over beige walls, took three coats...and maybe four would have looked better).
Book that inspired color before it was cool: Susan Sargent's The Comfort of Color c. 2004.
>108 judylou: Now, who says your house doesn't suit it. There wallpaper for everyone!
>109 mabith: Keep at the color. It's very liberating, don't you think?
I like that paper, Lois. And that yellow looks great with the magenta. Yellow can be such a difficult color to get right. I've had my troubles with it in the past.
As I am sitting in the front room, often looking over my left shoulder at the new wallpaper, I was thinking of what might go on that wall, and noting that anything that did would need a wider matte to create a bigger border between the busy wallpaper and the piece of art. Then my my great-grandmother's Victorian crazy quilt came to mind. Right now the quilt is cushioned in an acid-free storage box in a closet. It is unfinished on the edges and has no backing.
The issue is whether I really need to preserve this quilt for future generations. In the last few years I've come to realize that my children will not value some of the things I have saved from my mother, grandmother and great grandmother (as it happens all 3 of these women worked in the cotton/wool mills (my mother during WWII). They might value something from my mother because they knew her or be interested in something because it appeals to them for some reason or another. They don't have the sense of history, of women's history, of the folk arts tradition that I have. When it's out, it brings me a lot joy, So, why not enjoy it??
Ages ago, I called the New England Quilt Museum (years before I worked there) when I had the idea to frame and display it. They told me that one has a choice to either enjoy it or preserve it. They noted both the dangers of putting it behind glass and noted that museums have more than enough examples of Victorian Crazy quilts which more ornate and finished, and I assume probably made with more skill (although I find her embroidery exquisite)
We talked about how it could be displayed...should I make it so I could rotate it so there was not just stress on one side, for example. They thought a compromise would be bringing it out, displaying it on a bed for a couple of weeks at the holidays. Obviously, I didn't do this.
At the moment, I'm thinking of placing a backing on it and binding it, perhaps with a protective border which would serve as kind of a matte (although I haven't pulled it out to see how it would look against the wallpaper, it might not need one). Clearly, over the years out in the light it would fade some. Perhaps I'd only display it during the colder seasons.... Any thoughts?
First off - I was so busy admiring your wallpaper that I failed to wish you good luck with your surgery. So - good luck with your surgery and hoping you can get back to quilting soon.
I hear you about current generations not needing/wanting/appreciating things from prior generations. When we were moving this spring and I was packing my grandmother’s very fragile wine glasses, I was wondering who was ever going to want them. Same with her dishes which I do use on the holidays.
You mention it might fade - does that wall get direct sunlight? If it was ages ago that you checked, I would try to find a reputable framer and look into putting it behind glass (although you also didn’t say how big it was) again. I took a piece of counted cross stitch to have it reframed when we moved and my framer now has archival glass (well I think it’s called “museum” quality). Things change so often that there may be other options now. And you should think about how heavy it would be to hang.
I have a yo-yo quilt that my husband’ grandmother made that I have in a acid free bag on my closet shelf. It’s way too big and heavy to hang. And it has a couple of places where the yo-yos have come apart.
>113 dudes22: I have had a lot of framing done and have an (ex) family connection with a high end gallery; however, I do not intend to frame it. First of all, framing can create an internal environment that might not be conducive to the fabrics. Second, as you say, it would be cumbersome. I am thinking about finishing it and adding what it might need to visually separate it from the busyness of the wallpaper and hang it. Perhaps I will put sleeves on multiple sides so I can rotate it, avoiding stress in one direction. At least that's the plan...I think. I have 3 quilts in acid-free boxes, the Victorian Crazy Quilt and two depression-era quilts.
When I worked for the National Trust for Historical Preservation one season at the Chesterwood estate, I was asked to repair a yo-yo quilt at a property across the street. It was mostly yo-yos coming apart from each other rather than the yo-yos themselves coming apart. Wouldn't your yo-yo quilt look lovely across a bed?
>114 avaland: - I was just thinking that new techniques are always coming and that maybe, if you had really wanted to frame it, it might be worth exploring. But I understand why you wouldn’t. I do like the idea of multiple sleeves, even though it would be more work. (And I’m going to remember this.)
Right now my extra room is my temporary sewing area, but I might think about putting the yo-yo quilt on a bed when I actually set up my guest room. And, I’ll have to see how many yo-yos I’d have to put back together.
>115 dudes22: Seems to me the sleeves could be easier - machine stitched - if I put them on a backing before before I attach that backing....
Where will you have your permanent sewing area?
Oh - Pete is making me an area in the basement. He put up some walls and is insulating it and adding some paneling. Hopefully I’ll be able to move in some shelves soon and then I can unpack my fabric.
>117 dudes22: Oh, that sounds VERY promising! I put pegboard on one of my walls, good for things I don't use very often...extra scissors, acrylic templates, other odds & ends. And don't forget you'll need a design wall! (although, if true be told, I'm going to pick up 2 big pieces of rigid insulation and put my flannel on both, taking the existing piece off the wall itself. I find I often need more width than the one piece of flannel). I'm excited for you!
Me too! I had a peg board in my old sewing area and will put one here as well. I found a site through Pintrest that had an idea for a design wall that was 4 pieces that interlock so you don't have to have it up all the time. I think Pete's got an idea of how to do that for me.
Neck surgery rescheduled to the 31st. As it happened, Cheryl the Quilter finally got back to be this evening, so I'm taking 3 quilts down to her (well, hubby is driving) on Friday afternoon. I've take the batik quilt, the one that I paper-pieced, and the one made with my Nana's salvaged fabric squares.
>120 avaland: I hope that your surgery goes well, and that your recovery is swift.
I'm looking forward to pictures of the finished quilts, as well.
Good luck with the surgery and with the recovery. Hope it is speedy. I'm looking forward to the finished quilts, especially the one with your Nana's fabric.
>123 catarina1: Thanks. I'll have to decide in the next 18 or so hours what pattern of quilting I would like on that. And, I'm going to have to make a decision about the color of the thread for the batik quilt. I don't like the idea of black....and natural seems wrong.
>120 avaland: - I certainly hope your surgery gets you back to quilting soon. The batik quilt that I just finished had a lot of colors in it too - although they were more subtle than the ones in your quilt. In the end I decide to go with a brown and it looked great. I agree that black would be too dark. What about some kind of variegated? blues and yellows? or maybe a green? And for your "nana" quilt, what about undulating lines that cross each other - kind of like elongated ovals? that's my 2 cents worth.
>125 dudes22: Your 2¢ worth is always welcome, Betty. If I were doing it myself, I might have gone with a variegated, not sure the quilter has any. I'm thinking maybe a tan .... In a lot of my quilts the quilting doesn't show much due to the scrappiness, but it will show on that batik quilt. I should take a look at the one in the book where I got the pattern and see what color they used.
I tend to go with circular patterns of some kind or another to balance the angles, lines and points in the piecework.
Thanks for the surgery & recovery wishes. I'm hopeful.
I turned in the quilts yesterday. I was hurting by the time I got there so didn't put as much thought into picking quilting patterns that I usually do. As much as I can remember I picked a nice pattern floral pattern for the vintage quilt and something vaguely similar for both the paper-pieced and batik quilts. However, when I got home I had second thoughts and dropped her an email asking her to do the batik last and I would try to meet with her again to rethink.
The quilting won't show much on the first two quilts but will show quite a lot on the batik quilt so I worry about it being distracting. Need to rethink a bit on pattern but we did decide on a gray thread.
>129 judylou: 'tis true! He recently pointed to a photo we had hanging up and said, "Hey, that's a picture of me as a baby!" (that was the first time we heard him use "me.")
And here is a recent conversation he had with his mother:
Mom: Oliver, do you want to help me make oatmeal?
Mom: Ok, bring your stool over.
*brings stool over to me sideways, flips it over and climbs up*
O: whispers Nothing can stop me.
(I have to wonder which cartoon he got that last line from).
Ha! Love listening to little ones. They can say the most wonderful things!
>130 avaland: I loooooove that!! "Nothing can stop me" -- That's right, buddy! Nothing can stop you!!
Have been cleared—9 days after surgery—to remove the cervical collar and go on with a normal life (the bones are still fusing so no real wild stuff). I can drive...etc.
That's good because I have lots of stuff to do and sew!
>133 avaland: Yay! Happy sewing! Just remember not to push it too much.
"Nothing can stop you", to paraphrase, but take it easy. This time of year tries to turn us all into dervishes. Glad to hear you are recovering so well and quickly.
>133 avaland: Excellent news, and I'll add my vote to the "take it easy" crowd. I'm so happy to hear that you're doing so well. There can never be too much good news in a day. :-}
Well, I haven't done the duplicate post in quite a while. I guess I was due. Perhaps it just means I am twice as happy. :-}
Thank you all. I no sooner typed that when I started coughing... I have caught the hubby's cold (which he had while I had surgery)! I did manage to get to bookstore to get their reordering done...and I drove myself. And for the geeks in the crowd:
Here's my new titanium bits! That's a plate in front with 2 of 4 screws showing. The two vertical lines indicate the metal cage that is where the disc was. The cage has material in it to promote bone growth. In some months that will all be encased in bone - thus fusion. I have no pain whatsoever from this or from the previous injury (although my throat did hurt for a few days after surgery). I have a 1 1/2 inch sutured incision (covered in what is more or less superglue) at my neck crease towards the left side.
Oh, gawd, the ideas are bubbling up...
I have always said I was going to make a Victorian crazy quilt Christmas tree skirt. I have an old skirt that I made in the early 80s when my kids were small, very basic. I haven't used it the last year or two.
Maybe I could piece it by this holiday.... (if 17 other ideas don't pull me in other directions)
>140 avaland: I had to read that sentence three times, before I realized you meant "skirt for Christmas tree" rather than a "Christmas Tree skirt" that you would wear. I look forward to either one, of course. :-}
(Nice internal neck jewelry as well.)
Goodness I hope you are feeling better after your surgery... and can get on with some sewing... christmas tree skirt sounds festive... I think I made one many moons ago but we dont 'do' christmas anymore!
>143 primlil: Sadly, no sewing yet. I got to take the cervical collar off on the 9th but was immediately hit with the worst cold I have had in years. Horrible coughing; had to get prescription cough pills. I don't think I've blown anything of my new titanium parts. I'm just now starting to feel a bit more human....
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