Sunday, April 25, 2010

Mini pinwheels

Here is another mini I'm working on.  It should finish out about 9.5 X 12.
After posting this and seeing the picture I'm going to take that outer border off and replace it with something else.  Not sure what, but I don't like what I'm seeing in this picture.  While the colors aren't true, I don't care for the batik for that border.  Stay tuned - we'll see what I can come up with. 

Working on the Morning Star

I finally got some work done on the Morning Star Quilt.
It is sure slow going - getting the 4 little corners on all the sashing pieces, but I am making progress. Today I decided to start putting some of them together - if nothing else just to inspire me that some day if I keep at it - this WILL become a quilt!!

So far they are just one strip of blocks sewn together with one sashing strip. I will just continue this way so that if I need to move some around to keep the colors pleasing - I will be able to.

The solid blocks are nickels, the sashing is 2 1/2" X 5" an the little corner pieces are 1 1/2 sq.  

I have also been working on getting my Virginia Mountains done. It's on a new Quick-Snap frame and is progressing along. I just needed something else to do while my fingers healed a bit!!
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Monday, April 12, 2010

Big Stitch - Light bulb moment

Eureka - no more pliers!! I have been working away at hand quilting my Virginia Mountains quilt and wishing there was some way I wouldn't have to stop every 3 or 4 stitches and grab the little pliers to pull the needle through. I am using a size 5 betweens needle with size 8 pearl cotton and you just can't get that needle and thread through without the help of the little pliers..... or so I thought!

OK I know there are these little needle grabber things that you can use, but you still have to stop, pick up the grabber and place it on the needle.... I don't know if that's a big improvement over the pliers. Plus I have a lot less chance of losing the pliers than one of those little grabber things. (Not losing things is something I always have to keep in mind because I lose things - a lot!)

Anyway - I had a thought pop in my head today about this medical wrap. I've always thought of it as horse wrap, but I know it's used a lot at Veterinarians. They use it to secure bandages and it sticks to itself. It may also be used in regular hospitals – I just know I’ve typically seen it used for animals. This is what it looks like:
The Inside of the core say  It's really stretchy one way and not so stretchy the other, but the main thing is that it sticks to itself a lot like floral tape does - only in a bigger way.

I wrapped some around my index finger and thumb and sure enough it grabbed that needle, but it also stuck my fingers together so I took it back off the index finger.
Walla!  It grabbed hold of that needle even though there were several stitches on it and pulled it right through the fabric.  I was able to go right back into stitching the next several stitches without having to set down the pliers and pick the needle back up.  I felt like I was flying through those stitches!   I'll have you know I don't really fly when I'm hand quilting - I'm still so very clumsy with it, but it still felt that way! 

OK - that worked - how about going away from myself.  This quilt is big enough that turning it every 4 inches was really getting to be a pain too.  I added a couple more squares of the tape from the piece I took off my index finger to the pad of my thumb....sticks really good:

....and it worked!!  It would work even better with a little something under all the tape I think, but with a little more practise and experimenting - I think I'm going to get this quilt quilted !!!

When your tape starts to lose it's stickiness, just cut off a little strip of the tape and push it on top of everything that's already there.  Once your done - you just take the tape off and throw it away.  There's plenty enough tape for many, many sessions and they come in lots of colors.   I wonder if floral tape would work too.  I don't have any around to try, but maybe some of you do and could let me know.

Friday, April 9, 2010

4-Patch Posie Improved

Remember the 4-patch posie that I didn't like? I was playing around with some of the left-over fabric and decided to try the blocks on the left....can't remember their name right now... anyway the smaller wedges and more repetitions really make a difference for this fabric.

Earlier the quilt ended up at 46 X 56 - not really big enough to me because I think a quilt should cover both the shoulders and the toes to truly be functional!! When I added the additional blocks, it stretched the finish size to 46 X 72 - ah..... much better!

Forgive the poor photo. (Cell phone and no good place to hang a quilt for photos, but I wanted to get it documented that I'm now happy enough to call this top done. Off it goes to the short stack to go to the quilter.
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Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Clean your machine reminder!!

I knew I was pushing it - trying to get one more thing done before I pulled things apart and cleaned my machine, but I guess I overdid it!!

4-Patch on Point top done

I finally got this top done. It will go with a couple of others to a nearby quilter to get the quilting done, then I'll get it bound and off the list.

The 4-patches are bits and pieces I've had in a scrap pile - just not enough to do much else with. The light colors are also scrappy though they don't show up as well.

The green is fabric from former curtains or table-cloth! I really don't remember - but I think it was a table covering from the holidays years ago. It has a woodgrain to it and I just loved it - - then!!

It was all assembled in the grocery sack fashion - don't look - just grab a 4-patch and put it in. There are several patterns bunched together and such, but that's OK for this one. It will probably go in a car and get used for a variety of it really won't matter.

I'm glad to have this done, and I think we'll get a lot of enjoyment out of it - It turned out pretty darned good for scrap material IMHO.

Finished top 57 X 78 inches.
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