Sunday, June 25, 2017

My Slabs

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I almost forgot to post the slab blocks I made for our block exchange.  This block is about 8 inches square. It was supposed to be mostly blue and turquoise.

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This one is a fall theme. It's also about 8 inches square.

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This one is 6.5 inches square. It is made up of neutrals to browns.

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These are 8 inches square. Directions were anything but green!

These slab blocks are a blast! I got to play in my scrap bag and make something. The fun is that you can use any size scrap you like. You end up using pieces that you thought were too small. I guess the moral of the story is to save the scraps! You can make great blocks from them. 

I'm so happy I was asked to participate in this block swap. I'm planning on making a table runner with my blocks. I'm looking forward to more swaps!

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

New Books

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I recently bought a couple of books. Quiltfolk is actually a magazine. However, it has no advertisements. I just started reading it. This issue focuses on Iowa. There's only one quilt pattern that I saw when I flipped through it. It looks like an interesting new concept in quilt magazines. It's a bit pricey but that's to be expected if there are no ads. There are lots of articles on people involved in the quilt world. 

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Stunning Stitches is the latest book written by Jen Lucas. I love her books. I love to knit shawls and she writes some beautiful patterns. She also has directions for cowls and scarves in this book. I'm trying to pick out my next knit project. I feel the need to start knitting. It's so relaxing to me! I'll let you know when I start!

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Slab Swap

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I was asked by some fellow to bloggers to join in a block swap. I haven't taken part in a block swap in ages so I thought I'd give it a try! I was told we were making "slab" blocks. I had to google it to make sure it was a block I could make! There are 5 of us in the swap. We each asked for specific colors and sizes. I asked for a pink/green block that finished at 10 inches square. 

Dawn made the squares at the top of this post. Aren't they pretty?! I just love them. I was thinking of making a table runner.The fabrics are perfect. Dawn blogs at sewyouquilt2 and  you can find it here. I love her blog. There's always something fun going on!

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Julierose sent me this beauty! One of the fabrics looks like Little Red Riding Hood dolls, So cute! She made her block a little larger but I can always trim it down. These blocks are fast but so fun to look at the various fabrics. You can find Julierose's blog at julierosequilts. She's very artistic and I love to see what she's working on. 

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This last block was made by Jacky. She doesn't have a blog but she does have some gorgeous pink and green fabrics! Another lovely block for me! Such fun! I really looked forward to receiving mail! Each envelope I received held a surprise for me!

My slabs have all been mailed. I like symmetry and straight lines so I did the best I could! It was fun to play in the scrap bag and  put together some nice fabrics. Thanks for asking me to participate!

Monday, June 12, 2017

Block 11 Arcadia Avenue

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This block is quilted! There are 12 blocks in Arcadia Avenue and this is the 11th block I've quilted.
Yes, that means I have one block left! 

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I outlined the arrow shapes. I also stitched around each of the triangular peaks. The center is all stitched also. 
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I stitched ribbon candy in the black triangle. This block worked up so fast. Hoping that last block is fast too! So happy I can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel. This quilt was very time consuming to quilt but I'm so glad it's just about finshed!

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Backings and Quilt Tops

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I haven't done much sewing or quilting lately so I decided some retail therapy would be helpful. I bought this backing last week at my local quilt shop. It's from the Little House on the Prairie fabric line. I think it's just perfect for my Patchwork Swoon quilt. 

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This is the Patchwork Swoon quilt. I like that the backing is a soft blue with little flowers running through it. I think just about any fabric would have worked but this fabric seemed the best choice to me. 

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I bought this beautiful Kaffe Fassett backing for my Kaffe Mystery Quilt. This backing is so pretty! I couldn't pass it by!

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This the mystery quilt that my guild sponsored this past year. It's made up of all Kaffe Fassett fabrics.

I'm busily marking the Patchwork Swoon so I can quilt it nicely. I've never pre-marked but took a class where the teacher thought it was the best way to go. I'll try it out and let you know!

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Applique Border

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I've picked up working on the applique border for Green Tea and Sweet Beans. This the the bottom border towards the left hand side. If you look at the border, it looks like a vine that winds all the way around the quilt. It starts in the bottom border moving towards the right side. When it meets again, there is a little garden of flowers. This is that garden. The vine will end to the left of that red flower with the polka dot middle. 

Once again, I'm content doing handwork while sitting on the couch. I really think I'll start sewing on the machine again sometime this week. I'm buying backing and batting so I can start machine quilting again also. I've already been back to work. Life goes on. Sad but true. 

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

A Quilt Finish

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I've had such a hard time working on anything since my father passed away. But I did finish something! I finished sewing down the binding on this quilt. It was just nice to sit down, rest and do a little hand sewing. Unfortunately, I'll probable always associate this quilt with my dad's passing but I'm hoping that time will make it feel less sad.

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Here's a closeup of the binding. I had the fabric for this entire quilt in my stash. I also had the batting and backing. I had bought the backing for a different quilt but thought it would look better with this pattern.

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I've received some beautiful flowers the last few days. My house smells so nice! I really think they've helped me to feel better. Some of my friends are so thoughtful. Just to know that someone is thinking of you can brighten anyone's mood. I may have lost my dad but I feel my friends have really come through for me. 

Monday, May 29, 2017

Quiet Memorial Day

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I haven't done much sewing or quilting at all. I'm still adjusting to the passing of my dad. However, I would like to get to Arcadia Avenue soon. I finished this block up last week. This is the 10th block out of 12. 

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Here's a closeup of what I've done. I outlined the seams in the middle black star. I stitched in the ditch in the gray/white areas. I made little arcs in each of the little colored squares. I quilted lines in the smaller outer triangles. I made wishbones in the larger outer triangles. I like how this block turned out.

I've been watching television and sewing down the binding on my scrap quilt. I hope I start up sewing again soon. I have the next few days off and I think it would make me feel better. 

Friday, May 26, 2017

My Sad News

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I hate having to say that my dad passed away 2 days ago. He was 90 years old so he did live to a ripe age. However, I just wasn't ready to this to happen. He had been in declining health. He had had a stroke a few years ago and just wasn't the same after that. But, he was still with us.

A few days ago, he woke up at 2AM and my mom thought he was acting strangely. He couldn't walk properly and may have had a seizure. He was unresponsive after that. An ambulance was called and he was admitted to the hospital. A few hours late, he was gone. So fast. I'm so glad he didn't suffer but it's just hard to accept.

My dad was a custom tailor. It was through him that I developed a love of sewing. When my dad had difficult times, he always turned to his sewing machine. I'm hoping my sewing/quilting will do the same for me. The funeral is tomorrow and I'm hoping I get through it okay. Then, I'm going to sew and thank my dad for passing his ability to sew onto me. I think it would be the most fitting tribute to him. 

By the way, that picture is from May 13, 1984. I can't believe it's been so long. 

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Scrap Quilt Quilted!

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It's a wonderful thing to say that the quilting is complete on this quilt! I finished this the other day. I'm in the middle of sewing down the binding but wanted to share photos of the quilting.

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Here's a closeup of the quilting. I made wish bones in the sashing and arcs around each individual square of the nine patches.

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I quilted up and down lines around the 9-patch blocks set on point.

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I always love looking at the back. You can really see the quilting. This quilt was great practice for me. I got to use up some scraps as well as practice some nice quilting. I feel each quilt makes me a little more comfortable on the long arm. I still have a ways to go, but I'm getting there. 

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Mystery Quilt Revealed!

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Here's the Mystery Quilt final reveal! I finished it yesterday. I'm having some work done at my house so it was the perfect opportunity for me to finish this up. I had the main body of the quilt done but needed to add the 5 borders. I know, five borders!! It measures 67 inches square. It's actually a nice size.

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Here's a closeup of the fabrics. I think this quilt works so nicely because I used all Kaffe Fassett fabrics. You can never go wrong! The colors are rich and vibrant. They make any pattern look great!

I have no idea how to quilt it. I'm waiting for some inspiration! Any ideas?? I would love to hear them!

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Happy Mother's Day!

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Happy Mother's Day! I hope you're all enjoying your special day. I've visited my mom and brought her a few gifts. I'm back home and watching my husband trying to get dinner together. So fun to watch! Hee hee!!

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Here's a recent picture of my mom. 

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This was her passport picture when she came from Italy. She was 17 years old! I think she still looks great! I'm so lucky to still have her and my father. 

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Arcadia Avenue - More Quilting!

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So happy to say I've finished quilting the 9th block of Arcadia Avenue. I've worked a lot in the last week but I somehow found a few minutes here and there to finish this block.

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This is just a close up of the block. You can see I outlined the inside of the black area. All the seams have been stitched. This turned out to be a pretty quick block to quilt.

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I've already started the 10th block. I outlined the middle black area. I couldn't get a good picture if it since it's still in the machine. You can see what I'm doing in the black squares. Just stitching in the ditch and quilting arcs in the inner colored squares. 

I'm off for a 2 days. I have to get ready for Mother's Day and my anniversary is Saturday. Everything seems to happen at the same time!!

Friday, May 5, 2017

The Applique Begins!

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I finally cut out the borders for Green Tea and Sweet Beans. The applique consists of a vine that starts in the bottom border and curves all the way around the quilt. Between the beginning and end of that vine, there's a little garden of flowers. It's made up of 5 flowers on stems with a few leaves thrown in as well.  Here's a picture of my applique all ready to be sewn on.

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I've got one stem appliqued so far. You can see my markings where the other flowers will be added. I plan on making stems and flowers for one section, doing the applique and then repeating the process to make my way around the quilt. I know it's time consuming but I think I'll love the look of the quilt with the applique border. It should be the perfect finish to this quilt!

Sunday, April 30, 2017

Arcadia Avenue Block 9

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I've been making some nice progress on quilting Arcadia Avenue. I'm almost done block 9. This block reminds me of old film strip. I feel this is an easy block to quilt. It's so easy to quilt in those little squares!

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This picture shows the quilting a little better. I'm stitching in the ditch in most of the seams. I'm making little up and down loops in the colored squares. I'm just alternating the directions of the loops. I thought it would be more interesting that way.

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Almost forgot to show you the middle! I outlined each seam and stitched 1/4 inch little arrows in each triangle. I'm hoping to finish this block tomorrow. Only 3 blocks left to quilt! 

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Green Tea and Sweet Beans

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So excited to show you Green Tea and Sweet Beans! It's done except for the borders. I'm too tired to try and conquer them. This quilt top needs a good ironing but that's for another day too! This quilt top has been a challenge!

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This quilt is made up of 4 sections. This is Section 1. It is the largest section. I finished this on Monday.

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This is Section 2 .I completed most of it yesterday after work. Today, I added the little squares so it would be the same size as Section 1. 

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Section 1 and Section 2 were sewn together this afternoon. I just had to sew this half to Section 3 and 4 which you can see below.

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Voila, the top is done!! Sewing the two halves together took some time. Too many seams to match up!

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I really think the borders will add a nice frame to it. I can wait a few days before I start the borders. For now, I'll just look at the quilt top so far!

Sunday, April 23, 2017

More Machine Quilting

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I finally started machine quilting the scrap quilt I made a little while ago. It took me forever to decide what to do with that border. It's a 5 inch border but it's pieced and has a 1-inch strip running right through the middle of it. I decided on these loops in mirror images of each other. It was easy to make my little loops in that 1-inch piece.

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I made my little arcs in the 9 patches and wishbones in the solid fabric. I liked quilting my up and down loops in the on-point 9 patch. I've completed the first row as well as the top border and a little bit of each side borders. I feel calmer now that I've quilted all the different patterns at least once. 

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I've completed quilting block 8 of Arcadia Avenue. 

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This is a better look at the quilting. I made loops in the triangular area. I outlined 1/4 inch inside the border triangles. I also made little loops in the white area. Just like the center!

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You can see the loops a little better in the center here. 

That's it for machine quilting for me! I've got to do some piecing soon! Green Tea and Sweet Beans is almost done. I have to cut a ton of 1.5 inch squares. I think around 100! I'm really looking forward to putting that quilt top together! 

My Slabs

I almost forgot to post the slab blocks I made for our block exchange.  This block is about 8 inches square. It was supposed to be most...