slight vacation from quilting

Today was the first day in a few weeks that I have used the sewing machine. It was not really a vacation from quilting. I have spent the past month purging and packing the Maine house. Then trying to combine two houses into one. I made the first of many runs to the Salvation Army last Tuesday. A big yard sale is ahead for next summer. One of my daughters now owns the Maine house and she is doing the same. The transition went well.

Now that I am in the purge mode, I’m going to continue with the New Hampshire house. I’ve found a lot of things that I forgot that I had. I really don’t need a lot of the objects in the attic, so they will be boxed up and taken away. In the meantime, I have found so many ufos. They are being gathered in one place so I can either finish them or dispose of them. It’s amazing how many duplicate quilting tools that I have. Maybe I can get all the supplies in the sewing room if I cut back.

Today’s sewing consisted of sewing the binding on a Dear Jane block. It is five inches square and didn’t take very long. One more block and Row C will be finished. There is hope that I will finish this quilt soon.

The second month of the Moorehead Mystery quilt is finished. Last month, we cut squares and rectangles. This month, we made lots of half square triangles and trimmed them to size. I made the half square triangles and pressed them. I put the cutting mat on the kitchen counter and trimmed a few at a time when I walked by. It didn’t seem like a big job by cutting in five or ten minute increments

The Summer Splendor quilt is four weeks behind. I’ve saved all of the instructions to a file so I can catch up at my leisure.

I don’t have any new quilts to show. While organizing and putting things away in the sewing room, I came across several log cabin quilts. This is such an easy pattern and is very versatile.

This quilt is on the bed in my sewing/guest room. It was made in the flip and sew method from a Womans Day pattern. Each block was made separately and then sewn together in the lap quilting method.

Scruffy telling us what she wants for supper
Max and Scruffy

This is a memory quilt. The Wire Fox Terrier is not Miss Molly. It is Scruffy, her predecessor. The Schnauzer is Max. The log cabins are tipped on purpose.

I had made a larger wall hanging with this pattern and gave it away as a gift. I enjoyed making it so much that I made this smaller one for me.

This log Cabin is twelve inches square. It was paper pieced.

This is also a small wall hanging. It was paper pieced.

The log cabin block is versatile. It could be a plain log cabin block, a pineapple log cabin block, or a court house step block. Changing the fabric colors makes the same pattern look very different. Adding applique enhances the block. Changing the orientation of the blocks will result in different looking quilts. I once saw a log cabin quilt that was made with velvet and lace. It was beautiful. There was no visible quilting on it so It must have been made with the flip and sew method.

I hope to get back to sewing and quilting soon. Some of the ufos are small. Maybe I should start on the little ones first.

Have a great day and happy quilting.

Still busy

It’s amazing how, when you’re not looking, life works itself out and comes together like pieces in a picture puzzle. I had been asked to teach a class at the New Hampshire Guild in November. It was supposed to be Landscape Gaa-barge class. That is a technique where you can make a wall hanging from a photo that you have taken. It uses scraps and small cut offs that would usually be thrown away. It is a fun class and everyone has a memory picture.

All was well until I was asked if I could do a virtual class. I have done Zoom meetings, Skype, and Facetime, but am not set up with the proper equipment to show the procedures. This was a problem.

In the meantime, the Maine Guild had it’s Christmas In July party with a Yankee swap. We wore gloves and masks and social distanced. I made a small wall hanging for my gift.

It went to a good home. The Guild members wanted to learn how to make the blocks. I said that I would make a tutorial and present it at the next meeting. It was a “what if” moment. What if I made a four part mystery quilt tutorial. I called the program chair at the New Hampshire Guild and she thought that it was a wonderful idea. So, starting in November, the New Hampshire Guild will have a mystery quilt for four months and Landscape Gaa-barge will be taught at a much later date. Problem solved.

The Maine Guild members had a fun day learning the block which can be made in several sizes.

My gardens in N. H. are dried up. I checked around and did find quite a few tomatoes and a zucchini.

I had some free fabric and decided to use it for the Moorewood Mystery quilt. The clues come once a month. The first month was just cutting, so it was finished quickly and put aside for the next clue.

I did purchase the white fabric
Fabric cut and bagged

Summer Sampler is on week six. I am two weeks behind. The last two need a printer to print out the patterns and mine is in New Hampshire. I’m in Maine. I’ll catch up later.

The applique wall hanging is ready to baste again for hand quilting. I had basted it already and used a wool batt. Every time that I picked it up, it seemed very heavy. After thinking about it, I decided that the wool batt would be better in a bed quilt. It took just fifteen minutes to pull out all the basting threads. It will be better with a thin batt. Miss Molly has inspected the quilt and says it’s ready to be finished.

Everything works out if you wait for a little while.

Have a great day and happy quilting.


A group of quilters has started a virtual quilt show on Facebook. Each quilters has been nominated by another quilter to show one quilt a day for ten days. There is no commentary about the quilt. Then, that quilter nominates another quilter to show ten quilts in ten days. This has been an awesome show and tell from a number of quilting friends and friend of friends.

There have been so many beautiful quilts shown and talked about. It’s hard to decided which one I like best, but I have seen some patterns that I would like to make.

My ten days are over. I did miscount and posted two different quilts on day 5, so I posted a total of 11 quilts. Many of my blog followers are not on Facebook, so I will show all eleven quilts here.

Day 1 This is a small wall hanging. It is a miniature of a larger quilt found in a magazine.

Day 2 Frolic is a Bonnie Hunter mystery quilt.

Day 3 This is a block of the week bed runner. Miss Molly is showing her favorite block.

Day 4 This was made in Sue Pellon class at Vermont Quilt Festival. It is fusible applique with machine blanket stitch around the applique.

Day 5 #! This is red work flowers and hand quilting. It took longer to get around to doing this than it took to do it.

Day 5 #2 Shadows. I made this at a quilt retreat.

Day 6 Canadian 150 It was made in celebration of Canada’s 150th anniversary. It is hand quilted. This quilt was supposed to be red and white but I used blue fabric.

Day 7 Vermont Windows was made in a class at the Vermont Quilt Festival.

Day 8 This was Blockhead block of the week. I have finished the blocks of a second blockhead, but haven’t put them together yet.

Day 9 My hand dyed fabrics were used in this quilt. It is heavily hand quilted. I changed the name of the pattern from October weekend to October Madness. It was hard to get all of the pieces in the right order. Some are not, but it’s hard to tell where they are.

Day 10 Basket and Butterflies. This quilt has won several blue ribbons, a best hand quilting ribbon at VQF, and viewers’ choice at Maine Quilts 2019. It is retired from shows. It is hand appliqued and hand stipple quilted.

I hope that you have enjoyed this virtual quilt show.

Have a great day and happy quilting.

Still Quilting

When I came to Maine this summer, I bought only a few projects to work on. I’ve been working a little on each one and don’t seem to finish anything. Comfort and Blessings is together in rows. It is set on a diagonal. It needs to be sandwiched with batting and backing so that I can quilt each row separately. Maybe I’ll do that on the next rainy day. It’s much more fun to sit on the porch and read a book while the weather is good.

I have finished eight blocks in row c for Dear Jane. Of the other five, four are paper pieced and one is an applique. Another rainy day for sewing. I can sit outside and quilt and bind so I should get busy and piece a few.

The applique wall hanging top is finished. It has been sandwiched and ready to hand quilt. My thread came from Superior Thread so I can start hand quilting any time. When I basted the quilt, I noticed that I forgot to add two buds. The stem ends in mid air. I’ll add them when I get to that spot in the quilting.

I needed a piece for A Christmas In July Yankee swap. I have an easy nine patch pattern that when cut and resewn looks very hard. It’s not. I had made this pattern before with 5 inch pieces. This time I used a stack of 2 1/2 inch Moda samples that were given to me as a gift. It is partially quilted. I’m not sure how to quilt the next section. It won’t take long to finish when I decide what to do. I still have a lot of small fabric 2 1/2″ samples. Also some mini paper patterns for paper piecing. I should put them together sometime.

I had decided to take the 25 week machine quilting class with Lori Kennedy. I thought that one lesson a week could be added to what I already do. The lesson came on Monday. And Tuesday. And Wednesday and Thursday. There was so much homework that I got way behind in everything. Years ago, I read a book by Elizabeth Zimmerman. It was called “Knitting without Tears” It taught the European method of knitting which is much faster than American knitting. At the beginning of the book, Elizabeth stated that if you didn’t like knitting and it wasn’t enjoyable, don’t do it. Do something that you enjoy. Taking Lori’s classes wasn’t enjoyable, so I’m taking Elizabeth’s advice. I’m not going to do the classes anymore. I will download and save the lessons and read them, There might be some tidbits that I need to learn.

In the meantime, I have a new book by Angela Walters. She says that if you want to learn how to machine quilt, just start. What a wise woman. If I want to finish any of my projects, I just have to start and work on them until they are finished.

I have a few wall hangings in the Maine house. The birdhouse wall hanging was made several years ago when I was a member of the Tuesday Night Quilters. It was a small group of ladies from the area where I lived at the time. We did round robins, challenge quilts, mystery quilts, and had a wonderful time.

The fish wall hanging was made in a small class of retired women. We met twice monthly and had a great teacher who taught us many things. The day that we made this piece, a reporter from the local paper joined us. She wrote a weekly column about senior citizens. We didn’t think that we were senior citizens at that point, so she called us active senior citizens.


The fish were stuffed; They had beads for eyes. The weeds were built in and free motion embroidery.

I made the third wall hanging for my husband. He had it in his office until he retired. He tied fishing flies and I asked him one day if I could borrow four. He asked if he would get them back. I said, Yes, eventually. The flies are tied to the quilt with real fishing line.

So, you see, he did get his fishing flies back.

My raspberries are outdoing themselves again this year. I’ve frozen several big pails full and there are lots more out there for tomorrow. I will enjoy them next winter. Raspberries twice a day for dessert are wonderful.

Have a great day and happy quilting.

It’s July

I finally arrived in Maine a few days ago. Our states now let us cross the border without quarantine. It is definitely different coming up two months late. The gardens in Maine are overgrown and impossible to clean up at this point. I’ll have to cut everything back when I can find time. I’ll be careful and leave the good stuff. I’m thankful for the gardens in New Hampshire. I was able to keep them up until I came up here. This year, I planted vegetable seeds and tomato plants among the flowers. Hopefully, they will still grow while I am gone. I’m going back for a few days at the end of July to check on them. We are having a much needed rain, The grass is crispy and brown. One of my grandsons had mowed the lawn until it turned brown. He did a great job of keeping the property tidy. I noticed lots of raspberries that will be ripe soon. The garlic scapes are ready to cut. They are so good in a stir fry. My neighbor’s peas are ready. I should buy my supply and freeze them for the winter. They are so much better than the frozen peas in the store. The farmer’s market is open on Saturday afternoon and I will get fresh vegetables there.

Some of my New Hampshire Flowers.

Yippee!!! I’ve just received notice that Crafsty/Blueprint has been acquired by TN Marketing, They have agreed to honor previous customer purchases for classes and subscriptions. Now, we just wait for instructions on how to do this.

I’ve only brought up a few projects this year. One project is Row C of Dear Jane, I have a few pieced and can quilt and bind them when I sit on the porch and do handwork.

The applique wall hanging is ready to baste. I want to hand quilt it so thread has been ordered from Superior Thread. It is supposed to come by Monday and the quilt will be basted by then. It’s not as if I don’t have enough thread. I didn’t have the right color and I wanted cones to make sure that I didn’t run out before finishing.

I’m taking an online 25 week machine quilting class with Lori Kennedy. The class is in the third week and I haven’t started yet. All the lessons have been saved to a file and I will start as soon as I get myself organized. Lori says that we are going to work hard and I believe her. There is a lot of information to learn and practice, practice, practice. My quilt sandwiches are made and my doodle pad is ready. Someone on her website told of a free app on an I pad that can be used to doodle. I’ll look it up and see if it is something that I can use.

The Comfort and blessings blocks are finished. I have the instructions for finishing the sashing and borders. I’m thinking of machine quilting each block and putting it together the lap quilting way. It would be easier than putting a big quilt under the bed of the machine.

I have a couple of other small projects to finish. It’s difficult to decide which project to work on. On rainy days, I like to sew in the house. On sunny days, it’s much nicer to hand sew on the porch. Hopefully, I can finish most of the projects while here.

The New Hampshire quilt guild has not met since March. The Maine Guild met last week for the first time since March. We sat outside and social distanced. It was so nice to be together again.

Have a great day and happy quilting.


Many of the new followers don’t know who Miss Molly is and what important job she has in my quilting life. Miss Molly celebrated her 10th birthday last January. She is very smart and is well trained, but she has her own ideas on how things should go. She is always asking me “Why do you want me to do that?” and goes about her jolly way and does what she wants. The old adage about teaching old dogs new tricks is not true with her as she learned how to “high five” in the past two months.

Miss Molly has passed Level 1, level 2 and level 3 with flying colors. She had had sniff and search lessons, agility lessons, and dance lessons. Dancing for dogs is obedience to hand signals and music. We had a dance routine, but she kept inserting her favorite trick, just because she wanted to.

Miss Molly’s very important job is quality control inspector.

Miss Molly when she first came to live with us.

Miss Molly has finished her meal and is waiting in the bowl for Max to leave his bowl so she can have the leftovers.

Miss Molly loved to dig. Fortunately, this was her only hole so we let her have fun.

Max and Molly playing. Max was much older than Molly and she missed him when he was no longer with us.

Miss Molly, just before her first professional grooming.

She was no longer a puppy when she came back. She was a beautiful adult dog. Of course that was in looks, not actions.

Miss Molly’s graduation picture. She did not like wearing the hat. Doesn’t like sweaters when it’s cold. Never could keep boots on. I even tried a tutu when she danced, but she hated it. No scarfs for her. but if I take her collar off, she is very upset.

My daughter and I were sorting large bags of factory cotton fabric cut offs. Miss Molly climbed on top of the pile to see if the fabric was o.k. to use in a quilt.

Miss Molly inspecting the Canadian 150 quilt.

Miss Molly has a co worker. Rufus, also, is a quality control inspector. Here they are discussing their hard days work.

Rufus and Miss Molly at work.

Miss Molly does not like thunder storms or loud noises. Usually she goes under the bed, but this time she sat in a corner, facing the wall. If she doesn’t see the lightening, maybe it will go away.

It would be nice if all quilters had a unjudgmental quality control inspector like Miss Molly.

Have a great day and happy quilting.

Random Thought

I’m still in N. H. The Governor said yesterday that he was coordinating with Maine and Mass, and the stay at home order might be lifted June 15th. We’ll see. In the meantime, I’m enjoying working in my gardens, doing Spring cleaning, and some sewing and quilting. Friends keep in touch by phone, e-mail and chatting from the correct social distancing. One of my daughters made three masks for me. They are awesome. Thanks so much. I had made two, but they are not as nice as my new ones. My daughter made them with fabric showing three of my favorite things. Quilting, gardens and Miss Molly.

The flowers are beautiful this year. Usually, I’m in Maine and only see pictures of the Iris and Lupines.

Craftsy was sold a few year ago to NBC Universal. The new name is Blueprint. While it was still Craftsy, I bought several of the classes and also downloaded several free classes. The e-mail from Blueprint stated that they were closing the program. Two of the sentences gave me hope. It said “Please note that we will provide a way for those of you have purchased classes to receive a copy of the classes you purchased, For example, we’re working on a solution to give you an extended period to download your purchased classes.” I just have to be patient and wait for the next e-mail.

One of the classes that I purchased was a Lola Jenkins class. In the class, we were supposed to make a face called the Lady with the Pearl Earing. At that time, the Guild had a challenge to make a small wall hanging of ourselves. I decided to use Lola’s technique and make my head. It was fun to make. I haven’t used the technique since then. Maybe, when I can download the instructions, I can make another piece. Maybe flowers or something else.

Comfort and Blessings patterns are still coming every Monday morning in my e-mail. It doesn’t seem possible that I’ve finished piecing #24. I have changed some of the fabrics as they were not the right color. I want this quilt to be on the quiet side.

I’ve been appliquéing the flower wall hanging while watching TV in the evenings. I am on the bottom border. I had designed the bottom border and had the flowers all ready to applique, but as I applique the flowers onto the border, I’m changing their position and adding green leaves in places. When I finish the left side of the bottom border, I’ll use the light box to position the same flowers on the right side. When all the flowers are on the wall hanging, I’ll take pictures.

Have a great day and happy quilting.

UFOs Finished

IMG_3005It is a great feeling to finish ufos.  One has been sitting on the shelf for years.  It was half quilted.  This week, I decided to concentrate and finish it.  I had started walking foot quilting, so I finished it that way.  There was a lot of turning and twisting of the quilt while I quilted it.   It did take a long time for such a small quilt, but it was well worth it.  One more finished quilt. It’s a charity quilt size and will go into that pile of quilts and placemats that will go to the Guild when we can meet again.

IMG_3012It’s not March, but the quilt that I had wanted finished and hung on my wall in March is finally finished.  When I tried to photograph it, Miss Molly decided to do her job and inspect it.  She wouldn’t move and is still sitting on it by the slider.  As soon as she decides to move, I’ll pick it up and put it away.  It is ready for next March.

The back is pieced from the leftovers. IMG_3008

Every Monday morning, I find three new block patterns from the Comfort and Blessings quilt in my e-mail.  The patterns and instructions that I received this morning have been printed and I’m ready to piece the three blocks.  So far, I have pieced 15 blocks.  The designer’s color choices are great. It  is nice to have the fabric ready in baggies.  There is just the right amount of  fabric in the original cuts.  In the patterns is a diagram that shows how to cut the pieces. The instructions are complete and accurate.   With the nice weather, I’m spending more time outside in the gardens.  These blocks can be made in small increments of cutting and sewing times.IMG_3004



IMG_3003      IMG_2998     IMG_2997

IMG_3002  IMG_2999

Dear Jane is on vacation.  I’ve finished Row A and Row B.  All the blocks in those two rows are quilted and sewn together.  The back is just as pretty as the front.  The patterns and tips for Row C have been printed.  Each block pattern is in a baggie with the fabric to make the block.  Sometime, when I feel like it, Jane will come out and I’ll start making that row.IMG_3010














I inherited a pinwheel quilt that was in three pieces. The original quilter intended that the three pieces be sewn together for a full size quilt.  As I looked at them, I thought that if I added a border, I could have three charity quilts.  The quilts would fit on my quilting frame.  I really needed to start using the frame.  As I was looking for backing  ,I found a few scrap quilt hanging, ready to quilt.  One was a jelly roll race top.  Another was made from cut out pieces that I won at a tea cup raffle.  They were perfect for the backs.  I found that I need a lot of practice to be a decent mid arm quilter.  I have the speed controlled.  The stitches are even. My problem is steering in the right direction.  By the time I finish the three quilts,  I will be a lot better. I’m learning.  Better finished than perfect is my mantra.

I’m still sewing 2 1/2″ squares as beginners and enders.  After sewing several together, and they were piling up, I thought of all the time that I would have to stand and press the seams.  It was a “what If” moment.  What if I pressed them along with the block pieces.  It wouldn’t take more than  a few seconds longer.  There is a small shelf under the ironing board.  I put a small bin on the shelf and threw the pressed two patches into the bin.  Every one was pressed to the dark side.  When I have a small stash of two patches, I can make them into four patches as beginners and enders.  Again, pressing as I press the quilt blocks.  It would be a free quilt.  Scraps leftover from other projects and sewn together as I’m making another quilt. In the meantime, maybe, I could finish some more ufos.

Have a great day and happy quilting.

Dear Jane

I haven’t even looked at Dear Jane for a while and decided to make a few more blocks.  Row A is complete.  It has been quilted and sewn together.  When I first started making the Dear Jane blocks, I planned to start in the center and work out. That worked out for a while until I changed my mind and decided to make the blocks by rows.

I’ve been working on Row B for the last two weeks.  They are all pieced, quilted and bound,  I’ve started to sew them together in a row .  When that is finished, I will add them to Row A.

IMG_2987  IMG_2988  IMG_2989  IMG_2990  IMG_2991  IMG_2992  IMG_2993

The patterns and tips for Row C are printed. Sometime today, I will choose all the fabric for that row, place it in the baggies and continue on with Dear Jane when the mood strikes.  She probably will rest for a while while I go on to something else.

I’ve pieced last week’s Comfort and Blessing blocks.  I can’t remember when I’ve enjoyed a block of the week project as much as I have this one.  The instructions are the best that I’ve ever seen. Choosing the colors before beginning is a wonderful idea.  I have only had to change one red fabric.  It was too modern and bright for this quilt.  It has shown up in two blocks so far.  This week’s block patterns are here.  Making them will be a change from Dear Jane. I think that this will be a beautiful quilt.

IMG_2970      IMG_2971      IMG_2972

My sewing room is a mess again.  With the shelter in place order, no one will come to my house so I don’t pick up after a day’s work.   I’ve found a few other ufos to finish.  Also a big tote bag of something is in the corner.  Someday, I’ll pull it out and see what is in it.  It’s a mystery.

The weather has been beautiful.. It has been great to go outside and clean out the gardens.  The perennials are coming up.  There have been a few blooming bulbs, but not too many.  The best part of raking the front yard is talking to the people walking by on the road.  More people seem to be walking this year than in years past.  It is a different world.  I won’t be able to go to Maine for a while this year.  Maybe by June or July or whenever the shelter in place and quarantine is over.  In the meantime, I’ll enjoy my gardens and sewing room in New Hampshire.

Have a great day and happy quilting.

Comfort and Blessings

I’ve done it again after I said that I wouldn’t do this until I finished some of my ufos.  I’ve found the most wonderful blog with a blocks (three) of the week quilt.  The quilt is called Comfort and Blessings.  There are 32 pieced blocks.  They finish to 9″.  The quilt size is 87″ x 103″. The quilt instructions are on

There are several downloads before you start this quilt.  First, there is a picture of the finished quilt.  No guessing on what it will look like.  There is a diagram of the block placement.

In this quilt there are 6 different reds, 4 different oranges, 3 different golds, 5 different greens, 7 different blues, 5 different browns and 10 different neutrals.  The first chart tells how much of each fabric is needed.

There is a fabric key chart.  When the fabric is cut, a small piece of each color is pasted on the chart.  That way, you have a record of the fabrics that you used and their number.

Before you cut the fabric, you number quart baggies from 1 to 32.  A second cutting chart tells you what sizes to sub cut your pieces and what baggie to use for each sub cut.   This take a little bit of time, but it is well worth the effort.  At this point, all the decisions are done.

IMG_2967   Block #1   Nelson’s Victory

Last summer, there was a sale of Free Spirit fabric at Mardens. I bought several fat quarters.  The colors and patterns of the fabric was not what I usually buy, but it was a great sale.  That fabric is perfect for this quilt.  I just had to wait until the right pattern came along.  A few months ago I washed, starched, and ironed all my leftover white muslin.  I would use that for the neutral.

IMG_2966    Block #2   Whirlpool

I cut all of the colored fabric, cut and pasted a small square on the chart, and placed the fabric in the numbered baggies.  I didn’t sub cut the neutral. The pieces were small, so I decided to cut what I needed for each block as I pieced it.

IMG_2968    Block #3  Constellation

The instructions are awesome and complete.  With block #1, you take baggie #1 and use the fabric that is inside the baggie.   There is enough fabric to cut what you need, with a little left over.  So far, the blocks use squares, half square triangles, and flying geese.  The parts are a little oversized and are trimmed down to the correct size.  Pressing instructions are accurate so that seams can be nested.

IMG_2963     Block #4   Country Road

One of my red fabrics didn’t go with the other fabrics in the baggie.  It was too bright and too modern.  It was easy to replace it with another red.  When I come across it again in another baggie, I’ll do the same.

IMG_2965     Block #5  Dutchman’s Puzzle

When I was at Mardens, I also bought a large package of fat quarters of East Spirit fabric.  There are enough fat quarters to use as backing.   I can machine quilt each block, leaving enough fabric to flip and sew the sashing.  Then, when the blocks are all sewn, the quilt will be finished and I don’t have to put a large quilt under the arm of my machine.   Mardens has the best sales.

IMG_2964     Block #6  Double Sawtooth Star

Now that all the preliminary work is done, it doesn’t take much time to sew three blocks in a week.  Sewing a new quilt gives me a burst of energy.  It leaves enough time for the ufos.

Have a great day and happy quilting.