Tuesday, January 14, 2020

A Mysterious start to the year

Well, I finished one of last year's mystery tops... The Meadow Mist Mosaic Mystery.  I have to say I really like how this one came out... love the 'chain' and the 'on-point plaid' look of it.  And off it goes into the UFO pile til there's time to make a backing for it.

 I started another mystery quilt this year.  It's called the Murder Mystery Quilt 2020 ... I'm looking forward to this, as it sounds fun.  I've got my fabrics chosen, and the first block is finished.   This should be interesting because it's an actual murder mystery with a story and clues and a solution at the end that includes more than just a finished quilt.  This is my first block:

And Bonnie Hunter is up to date... the latest clue is finished, though I've a bit more cutting to do once the final clues are released (my methods differ from hers, so unsewn pieces are uncut as well).  Here are a couple of my sewn sets from the last clue:

Two complete sets laid out with all the pieces, and a bunch of other completed sets off to the right hand side, waiting for the next clue.

Yet another mystery quilt, Out West by Pat Sloan... first block done:

This morning I will be attending one of my guild meetings, returning library books and trying to relax.  It's been a busy sewing weekend, with a forecast of more sewing as the week progresses. 

Friday, January 3, 2020

And so it begins...

Another year... another chance to get things right, or at least better... another 365 day trip around the sun.  I have so many projects I'm working on, I don't even know where to begin...  I'm making a whale quilt ('Whale you be mine', no pics yet), a mystery quilt (Meadow Mist Mosaic Mystery), the last clue of which just got released... I just need time to put it all together (maybe Sunday?), another mystery quilt (Bonnie Hunter's 'Frolic') which I'm far behind on now, and have lots of catching up to do (I had to get more fabric today, and order one piece on line, so I'm stalled), and a new mystery quilt-along by Pat Sloan called 'Out West'.  Here is my first block for 'Out West':

\Lots of catching up to do in the coming weeks.... Wish me luck!

Sunday, December 29, 2019

A Word for 2020

I've thought long and hard on this... my word for the new year... I do one every year, to inspire and provide focus for the coming year.   With so much chaos in the world, it is hard to stay focused and not get embroiled in the events of our time.  Still, I have come up with my word. 

The word for 2020 is DRIVE.
  • D - is for Determination, which I need to have more of... sticking to my commitments and finishing what I start
  • R - is for Reach - to remind me to reach for new plateaus and new experiences.... instead of withdrawing from potential opportunities to learn and grow.
  • I  - is for Inspire - not only myself, but others too...
  • V - is for Value - I tend not to always show how much I do value friendships and relations... Not showing it doesn't mean it's not there... I just don't express it often enough.
  • E - is for Encourage - others as well as myself.  I need to be more vocal in my enthusiasm for what others do as well as that inner voice that pushes me to do what I do, too.

Thursday, December 26, 2019

Some Quilts Need to Steep a While, Like Tea...

Back in 2003, I started quilting, taking a class as our local adult school.  I took classes there for four years or so.  During those years, our teacher had us do one or two fabric exchanges every year, followed by a pattern to use the strips or squares we traded.  One year (and no, I don't remember which year), we exchanged fabrics with leaf patterns.  The pattern she gave us to use them was for tesselating leaves.  I had SO many leaf fabrics, I had enough to make a full size quilt... I divided the fabrics into color palettes by seasons (winter, spring, summer and fall), then cut and sewed them together.  Somehow, without a dedicated design wall, I managed to put them all together into a quilt.  I wasn't thrilled with it, but it was done.. or so I thought.

And that is where it ended, the top ended up in WIP purgatory... stalled at the quilting stage.  I didn't like it much and it had no home to go to, so I figured, 'Why finish it?' - after all, it was too big for me to quilt, and I couldn't see the need to spend money on a longarmer to quilt it.  It languished.   Until earlier this year, when my daughter-in-law saw it and decided she liked it... But theirs is a queen sized bed, so I added some wider borders to it, had it quilted, and bound it a few weeks ago. 

Because it was for my son and dau-in-law now, I called it 'Seasons of Love'.  Does it assuage my guilt at not having given them a wedding quilt so long ago?  Not completely, but I do feel a little less guilty.  I hope it keeps them warm and cozy, and that we got all the cat hair and dander off it so her allergies don't flare up. 

Monday, December 16, 2019

Keeping up with Bonnie

This time of year, it's not always easy to keep up with all the holiday activities, chores and errands, and still stay current with other things.  My Monday was a mad dash that turned into a lot of wasted time.  Still managed to get a few things done, including clue 3 of the Bonnie Hunter mystery, Frolic.

I had them all cut and sewn on Saturday, but didn't get them pressed til the wee hours this morning.
I can't wait to see what she has us do with the other colors now! 


I make the occasional quilt for charity, but not so many.  I don't feel bad or guilty for not making more for charity - I make what I like and try to challenge myself with new techniques or new quilts.  I'm not always willing to let those go to just 'random' people.

However, during a recent health scare, I realized I really don't have a strong attachment to a lot of quilts I've made and if something should happen to me, I don't want to leave piles and piles of quilts for my husband to deal with.  I contacted several folks on Facebook through a local group and have given away about a dozen quilts this last week.  I feel a little liberated.  

Below are pictures of the some of the ones I gave away.  Every quilt went with care instructions, and lots of love (and a disclaimer regarding cats and dogs, in case of allergies).  Unfortunately, I didn't have pictures of all the quilts, but that's okay...

This first one was very special.... the first Saturday Sampler I ever did, from Cotton and Chocolate Quilt Shop.  I loved the process and learned a lot from it (I was a very new quilter when I made this, back in about 2006 or 7).  I called it 'Home for the Holidays' and gifted it to my mother in law.  After she passed and my father in law moved into an assisted living facility, it came back to me.  I thought it needed a new home.  This one went to a lady in hospice care after a stroke.  She is always cold and her caregiver wanted a Christmas quilt for her.  Since I didn't have a picture of this one in my files, I took a quick shot before it went away to its new home.

 This quilt is the pattern Bonnie Hunter calls 'My Blue Heaven', but I called my version 'Starry Night' because it reminded of Van Gogh's painting more than a blue and white vintage quilt.

 This next quilt is called 'All Roads Lead Home' and went to a woman who wanted something for her mother in law.  I hope she likes it.  The pattern is vintage, but the fabrics are modern... I love mixing things up.

 All the rest of the quilts below went to kids who needed quilts for the winter. 

Sewing for the Holidays

I made a whole bunch of little dice bags at one time, and decided they would make nice gifts for the guys and gals in my gaming groups this year for holiday presents.

I tried to pick the most masculine looking ones for most of the folks because guys wouldn't want flowery bags, lol.  They make great dice bags because they are padded and have little pockets for miniature figurines or whatever.

I also made them all pillowcases with a gaming theme (dice, swords, spellbooks and so forth)... Each one is unique and except for a couple of them, they will be wrapped and given out randomly... they can trade if they covet each others' colors.  One of the pillowcases has bears on the cuff (for a specific person who likes bears), and one has books (for someone special).

I hope they all like their presents.

A Mysterious start to the year

Well, I finished one of last year's mystery tops... The Meadow Mist Mosaic Mystery.  I have to say I really like how this one came out.....