Gaa Barge

It has been fun designing all the 32 pieces in the Gaa Barge series.  I have enough scraps taken from the wastebasket or swept off the floor to finish the remainder of my challenge.  I had originally planned to make one a week for a whole year, but gardening got in the way and the series wasn’t finished. Maybe, I can finish the series next winter when the snow flies.

IMG_0473The cat and dog pieces were made with purple and other dark fabrics for the background and tan fabrics for the animals.  The made fabric was made in the mile a minute method.  The patterns for the animals came from a child’s coloring book.  The cut out animals were fused down and then zig zaged around the edges with tan thread.  The lines of the drawing were zig zaged with black  thread.

IMG_0472Shortly after I made these two pieces, I taught a class on this procedure at a local quilt shop.  The pieces were my sample pieces.  They were at the shop when a photographer came to take a picture of the owners.  One of the pieces was grabbed and put under the needle of a sewing machine.  The colors went with a piece that was on the wall behind them.   I enjoy seeing my animal in the picture on the wall when I go to the quilt shop.

Have a great day and happy quilting,

What If ???

I enjoy making quilts that start with a what if.


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A friend gave me two big boxes of quilting magazines.  While looking through them, I saw a beautiful log cabin quilt and wanted to make it.  The quilt is called Flower Garden Cabins.  It was designed by Doris Heitman for her daughter Leslie Schmidt.  The pattern was in a 1997 issue of Homes and Gardens Quilts.  It finished at 49 1/2″ square.

One of the pages had little log cabin blocks showing the colors for the blocks and how many to make of each coloration.  What if   I copied the blocks and paper pieced the little blocks for a mini quilt?IMG_2548

In one of my stash drawers there are several bunches of coordinated fabric samples that I won at a quilt shop open house.  What if I use  one of these batches of fabric to make the quilt?  I found one bunch that was muted reds.  There were no green bunches of sample fabrics, so I pulled from the green scrap drawer.

IMG_2551It does take longer to make a mini quilt that one would think.  There are as many seams, but they are shorter,  The quilt finished at 22″ square.  There are thirty six 2″ log cabins with two borders.  I sewed a sleeve on the back in case I want to hang it on the wall,  It’s also a perfect table topper.

While I was sewing this mini quilt, another what if  quilt popped into my head.  This one will wait a while until I finish another quilt that is in process.

Miss Molly and I have been sitting on the porch swing, enjoying the good weather.  It is the greatest place to read and do hand quilting.   I tried to applique more flowers for the flower wall hanging, but the breeze kept blowing the fabric across the porch.   I’ll have to do that on rainy days inside the house. The August gardens are still colorful in spots.  The Cosmos is blooming.  Also the Allium and Maximillian Sunflowers.  The Hollyhocks are shorter than usual this year, but still beautiful. Maybe, they need a little food.

Have a great day and happy quilting.

 

 

 

Two Weeks

This has been an interesting two weeks.  First, I went to New Hampshire for a week.  I had a list of everything that I had to do,  When I returned to Maine, only half of the list had been finished.

I had an e-mail telling me of a quilt show and did I want to go.  Of course, everything else took a back seat.  We had a wonderful day.  The show was one of the best that I had been to for a while. IMG_2538 It was held in a church and the quilts were over the backs of the pews. Some quilts were hung.  Every quilt was beautiful.

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There was a room full of quilts and other things for sale on another floor.  It was like another whole quilt show.  I found some 18″ doll dresses and bought two for Annie Louise.  They are short dresses so I will have to use them as a top and make an under skirt.  All my doll dress fabric, etc. are in New Hampshire, so I haven’t made new dresses for Annie Louise this summer.

IMG_2539This little dress has eyelet around the neck, so I think that I will make an eyelet skirt to go under the dress.

IMG_2540This dress will make a top for a long sleeve plain dress.

It was so much fun being with my quilting friends. The weeds in the flower gardens will go away when it snows.  Green is a natural color.  Maybe I can clean out the gardens when I go down the next time.

58714784973__EDBAACC7-5FAD-4A28-894A-62BF8BF89D76The produce at the farmers’ market is wonderful.  I enjoy the variety of colors in the beans and the carrots,  Somehow, they taste much better.

After I came back to Maine, my computer cooling fan broke.  The cost of repair was a good down payment on a new computer.  I worked for three days to find another computer on line.  Finally, after finding a very nice customer service person on the phone, I ordered what I wanted.  Two days later, the computer showed up on my porch.  I downloaded everything that was necessary, but I couldn’t connect to my e-mail.   I finally rebooted the computer and shut it down for the night.  This morning, it works perfectly.   The portable cd reader/writer should come this week and everything will be in order. When I go back to New Hampshire the next time, I’ll take the computer to the Geek Squad and make sure that I did everything properly.

Today is a good day for quilting.  The Page 30 challenge is on my sewing machine.  I started free motion quilting yesterday.  The reveal is next month.  Hopefully, I will finish it by then.  I’m also finishing some applique on a little log cabin piece that I made to try out the new free motion rulers that I bought at the Maine Quilt Show.  It would be quicker to try the rulers on 10″ squares and then put them together in the quilt as you go method, but I saw this quilt in a magazine and had to make a mini version of it.   It’s taking much longer than I thought.

Have a great day and happy quilting.

 

Split Nine Patch

I have been looking through two big boxes of quilting magazines.  There are so many tips and interesting items to read.  I will be the rest of the summer reading and enjoying all the articles  There are a few interesting quilt patterns that I have set aside to make at a later date.

IMG_2534Fons and Porter Love of Quilting magazine has articles that are written by Gerald Roy.  He is a quilt collector and appraiser.  He is also a quilter, quilt judge, painter and antique dealer.  His articles are called “This Old Quilt”.  He shows pictures and talks about antique quilts that are in his collection.

In the May/June 2008 issue, he talks about split nine patch quilts.  They are fascinating.  It was a “what if” moment.  I have a bin of 2 1/2″ squares  What if I made half square triangles from light and dark fabric and duplicated these quilts.IMG_2535

 

 

 

I wanted a variety of colors, so decided to make accordion sewn half square triangles. This is a method that I learned from Beth Helfter.  Every half square triangle can be a different color.  She gave a talk at our quilt banquet and I bought her book that is called Oompah.  IMG_2531Her company is called EvaPaige Quilt designs.  You can find several you tube videos on the Internet that show this method.  It’s an easy method. Just take one step at a time.  I needed a lot of half square triangles so I chain stitched ten units and then sewed several together when they became long.

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I have the ruler that Beth recommends, but it is in N. H.  The Tucker Trimmer is here, so I used it.  The half square triangles trimmed out to 2″  There was just a little waste. I did have to cut the plain squares down to 2″.

IMG_2536While the quilt looks as if the color was random, the center light design of the quilt consists of carefully chosen fabrics.  When they are put together, there is an orderly arrangement.   I decided to make the center first.  Now, I can make the other nine patches and not think about color choices.  When they are all made, I can put them together.  The quilt is 10 by 10 blocks, so I have 96 more to make.  I can make a few at a time when I feel like some easy sewing.  I have enough split blocks and it is just a matter of trimming all the pieces down and sewing them together.

The original quilt was 80″ x 80″.  It was made in Pennsylvania in the 1920’s.  This one will be a bit smaller.  The center is 60″ x 60″, with borders of 2″ and either 3″ or 4″.It’s still a good-sized quilt.

The “what if” quilts are a lot of fun to make.    

Have a great day and happy quilting.

 

Maine Quilts

This has been a day of not accomplishing much.  I did hoop and embroider two sections of the 30 day challenge quilt.  Then on the third one, the hooped popped.  I put it aside as I have to take out all those stitches and do it over. That’s a chore for tomorrow.  I have cut out two flowers for my wall hanging.  I  tried to sew while sitting on the porch.  The wind came up and the fabric didn’t want to cooperate.  The weather was so nice that I sat and read some magazines.  No sewing on the porch today.

We had a horrendous storm yesterday afternoon. It poured.  We had lightening.  Then came the wind and the hail.  The hail was going sideways against the windows.  It’s a wonder that the windows didn’t break.  The noise of the wind and hail was so very loud on the roof and the side of the house.  Miss Molly found a place to hide.  She didn’t come out until three A.M. this morning.  We were very fortunate.  I heard that some people lost shingles and trees were down.  It did cool down for a little while.

I’m so thankful for perennials.  They come up and blossom, even if I neglect them. My flowers are beautiful.   IMG_2479IMG_2478

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I had a big surprise at the Maine Show.  As I said in another post, I didn’t receive a ribbon at the show.  When the show was over, I was waiting to pick up my quilts.  A few ladies were sitting at the table waiting with me.  One of them started talking about the viewers’ choice quilt.  She started describing it and saying how awesome it was.  Then she said it had the word Butterfly and another word in the title.  I asked her if it was Basket and Butterflies as that was the name of one of my quilts.  She wasn’t sure so I walked across the room to ask the woman who was in charge of the forms.  She opened her phone and showed me a picture of my quilt, Basket and Butterflies.  It had a ribbon on it.  Wow!!!! Viewers’ Choice is an awesome award.  When a ribbon is received from the judges, it is just the opinion of two people.  With the Viewers’ Choice, it is the opinion of many fellow quilters.  I am deeply honored to receive this award.  I had decided before the show to retire this quilt from competition.  It is retiring on a good note.

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Have a great day and happy quilting.

 

 

Quilts

The quilt show in Augusta was wonderful.  There were so many beautiful quilts.  It would be hard to choose my favorite.  It was nice to see my quilts hanging there even if they didn’t receive a ribbon.  I’ll receive the judges comments soon.  It’s always interesting to read their opinion. IMG_2495

 

 

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My gardens are beautiful.  They must like to be neglected.  The hollyhocks aren’t as tall as they have been in the past, but they are beautiful just the same.

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The raspberries are still producing.  I picked a big bowlful yesterday.  One of my daughters came today and we picked some more.  She went home with a very big bowl of berries.  There are still two rows to pick tomorrow.  We would have finished today, but it was too hot in the sun.  I’ll go out early tomorrow.

While coming home from the show, a friend and I were talking about quilting with the hand look stitch on the sewing machine.  I was thinking about that today and decided to quilt with that stitch on one of my UFO’s.  This little piece was part of a demonstration that I did on Deb Tucker’s Hunter Star ruler.  I had made four different sizes for the demonstration.

IMG_2509As the four sections were different sized, I added different size borders to make them the same size.  It is a little wonky piece.  It didn’t take long to quilt it.  It does look like hand quilting from a distance. IMG_2510

I used YLI invisible thread in the needle and regular sewing thread in the bobbin.  My sewing machine automatically adjusts the settings when that stitch is chosen.  I hadn’t used the hand stitch look stitch for a very long time.  Invisible thread is so much better now that it was when I quilted that way the last time.  It will be a quick way to finish some of my UFO’s in the future.  It might be pretty if I quilt with variegated thread.  Lots of ideas from a conversation.

Have a great day and happy quilting.

Quilt week

This is a week of quilt related fun.  Last night, I went to our Guild Christmas In July pot luck supper.  The food was excellent and the friendship was awesome.  There were eleven quilters in attendance.

We had our annual Yankee Swap.  There were many wonderful presents to be swapped.  I had number 10 out of 11 people, so I had a good chance of swapping for something that I really liked.  The gifts were all great so that was a hard choice.  Some good natured swapping occurred before my turn came up.  One of the bags left was a large Olive Garden take out bag.  I jiggled it and it sounded interesting.  Decisions – Do I take something already opened or take a chance on what was in the Olive Garden bag?  I decided to open the bag in my hand,  Am I glad that I did.  Inside was the most wonderful hand made basket.  IMG_2484

I knew who made it and was thrilled to have one of her baskets.  She is a great friend and now I had something to remind me of her.  Inside the basket was the most adorable little lamb.

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There is a lady bug on it’s backside. The little boots are so cute.  IMG_2487IMG_2486

 

In the bottom was some beautiful batique fabric.  What a great gift. IMG_2485

 

 

 

 

But, then there was number 11 and number 1 for the final pick.  I could lose the basket.  Number 11 swapped her gift which was great because the lady beside me was able to swap and get what she really wanted.  Then number 1.  She wanted the gift that she had at first pick and swapped for that.  We were all very happy with the end results.

Tomorrow, I will go to the Pine Tree State Quilt show.  It is always a great show.  The quilts are so beautiful.  I get a lot of inspiration and ideas from the show.  There are a few things that I want to buy from the vendors.  This year, I did place two of my quilts in the show.  I’ll take pictures tomorrow.

The flowers in my gardens are beautiful.  I haven’t worked the gardens this year and they still blossom right on schedule.  The day lilies, holly hocks, bee balm, and many other flowers are in bloom right now.  They are beautiful from the distance.  The weeds blend in with the foliage.  The Allium has budded but is slow to blossom.

IMG_2471   IMG_2469   IMG_2468   IMG_2466 There are so many different colored day lilies.

The raspberry patch is full of beautiful raspberries again.  I have a few packages in the freezer for next winter.

In the meantime, I’m still working on the Page 30 challenge.  I’ve started to quilt it with the embroidery machine.  When that part is finished, I’ll do some free motion quilting.  I should have It finished by the deadline.

Have a great day and happy quilting.

UFOs

The weather has been beautiful.  Warm with a small breeze to cool it down a bit.  The flowers are blooming in spite of no care on my end.  I should get out and pull a few weeds and cut back the flowers that have gone by.  There are wildflower seeds planted among the perennials.  I can see the small plants and don’t want to disturb them until they blossom.  IMG_2447

The honey bees are getting pollen from the Ragusa roses.

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I planted the whiskey barrels in front of the garage with cosmos seeds.  The barrels are full of plants.  They will be beautiful when they bloom.

IMG_2464One of the best things in July is the raspberries.  The bushes are full.  Today, I picked two big bowls full. There should be as much or more in a few days.  There are a lot of new bushes among the older bushes.  It was hard to find the rows.  I could probably double the size of the raspberry patch with all the new bushes. There will be a lot of pruning when it is time to do so.

IMG_2462I’ve finished two UFOs  One is a table runner.  It needed a border, quilting and binding.  Fortunately, I had just enough brown fabric for the border.  I had bought a piece of end of the bolt fabric at the Vermont Quilt Festival.  I didn’t realize that it was flannel when I bought it.  The colors were right for the table runner, so I used it for the backing and binding.  I’ve never made a flannel quilt and don’t have that type of fabric in my stash.  In the past several years, I’ve received fabric, etc. from time to time from friends.  This table runner must have been in with the fabric.  I didn’t piece it.  It will go into the give away bin.

IMG_2461The second is a table mat.  It was partially made, but the fabric was with it for the borders and binding.  There was even enough blue fabric for the backing.  Again, I don’t know who made this piece.  I have several pieces in my UFO pile that I didn’t make.  I’ll finish them and move them along.

Both the table runner and table mat are very pretty, but are not the colors for any of my rooms.  I have a few small pieces left over from making the table runner and table mat.  There might be enough to make a mini quilt.  I’ll have to think about it for a while.

I’ve started to mark the Page 30 challenge quilt for quilting.  It takes longer getting to it that it will take to do it.  Once I start, it will go much faster.  The challenge will be revealed in September, so I have time to  finish the quilting.

Have a great day and happy quilting.