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Monday, March 31, 2014

A Finish for March

I am thrilled to finally have my second finish of the year.  This Bungle Jungle is slightly smaller than the one I finished in January.  The backing and quilting is different.  I really like the quilting, but it hasn't been washed yet so it may be difficult to see.


I will be liking up with everyone else who finished their March goal at A Lovely Year of Finishes on the Sew Bittersweet Designs blogs.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Deja Vu Allover Again and Rainbow Scrap Challenge

I've been really pleased with my stash busting efforts this year.  Since January 1st, I have only purchased White on White fabric for backgrounds and setting blocks and 3 yards of light green tone on tone to use for sashing on 2 quilts.  In January, I purchased 10 yards of WOW and used all of it.  In March, I bought another six yards, three of which have already been cut into strips for projects.  I've been using so much WOW that I ordered a bolt (8 yards) while it was on sale.  It's been great for brightening up some of my dreary stash fabrics and scraps.

While I was working on my Film at Five quilt from Wedding Dress Blue, I kept thinking that the pattern seemed familiar.  Last week, I found out why.  Apparently, last summer I started the same quilt.  I found it in my fabric closet, missing only 18 of the sashing blocks and 10 corner stone blocks.  I finished them and will be able to put the top together next month.

I also found enough blocks to make another toddler size Gumdrop quilt. It only needs 32 nine patches to make it large enough for a lap quilt.  I made 18 this week and the other 14 nine patches will be part of my goal for April.
I sewed one more 9 patch for my blue tablerunner and started to assemble it.


Teal is the color for March in the Rainbow Scrap Challenge. I added 5 four patch blocks to my collection and tried a new 12.5 inch block from Moda called Dottie.  Each block takes one jelly roll strip of color and one of a background fabric.  The blocks go together quickly and create a nice secondary pattern. I think it will be perfect for the RSC.
I didn't make any pink postage stamp blocks in February so I added 2 this month along with a blue one and 3 more four patch blocks.
The March goal for Prairie Moon's 350 Block Challenge is 30.  The month started off slowly, but I managed to complete 51 blocks.  The year to date goal is 80, so I'm thrilled to have already completed 249 blocks. I am linking up with the other Rainbow Scrap Challenge participants at So Scrappy.  I love checking to see what everyone has sewn during the week.  The projects are always fun to see.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Feeling Lucky!!

I am starting to think that I should play the lottery because I have been so lucky lately.  Although I don't post that often, I spend a lot of time reading blogs and commenting when I can.  I have been following Gene Black's blog for a while and I always enjoy seeing his latest adventures in creativity.  Recently, he has been learning to weave and the results are amazing.  Gene offered a giveaway for a Craftsy class and I am excited to say, I was the winner.  The class I chose is, Continuous Line Quilting with Ann Peterson.  I have lots of quilt tops that need finishing and I have been procrastinating.  Hopefully, this will be the incentive I need.

During the "Grow Your Blog Hop" in January/February, I participated as both a stop on the Hop and a hopper.  It was a great way to discover interesting blogs and many of the participants offered giveaways.  I received this lovely homemade needle case from Karen at Faeries and Fibres,  She has a great blog and offers some block tutorials.  She has just posted the final step of a Quiltalong.  All of the steps are still available.  She enclosed a cute note card.  I'm sorry it didn't show up well in the photo.  It says, "Keep Calm and Carry On."  Good advice for all of us.




I also won a bag of scraps from Christa at Christa's Quilts.  Most of the scraps were from Christa's award winning quilt made for the Riley Blake/Modern Quilt Guild Challenge.  Unfortunately, even though I know I took a picture of Christa's scrap bag, I can't find it on my computer.  Many of the small pieces have already been put to use.  I will gather the remaining pieces to take a photo for a future post.

Back in January, I won a pattern for a stuffed alligator and the fabric to make it from Kevin at Feed Dog Designs.  The pattern is adorable and the fabrics are perfect.  We have some new babies in the family so I hope to make the alligator soon.

In January, I won a prize for finishing my goal (the Bungle Jungle Quilt #1) for the Lovely Year of Finishes Challenge.  You can see from the photo below, there's fabric and bits of embellishment in the Project Quilting Mystery Bundle from Kim at Persimmon Dreams.  She even included a can cozy that works well on my water bottle.

The plant in the background is Arthur, our split leaf philodendron.  We've had him for 13 1/2 years and he is still going strong in spite of the fact that he is taking over the dining area of our kitchen.

Thanks to all of the generous bloggers who make blog hopping and commenting so much fun,


Sunday, March 16, 2014

Hands 2 Help Challenge



You don't have to read many blogs to realize how generous quilters are.  It seems as though not a week goes by without reading about quilters donating a quilt to people suffering after a natural disaster, children in an orphanage, or someone ill.  For the past few years, Sarah at Confessions of A Fabric Addict has sponsored the Hands 2 Help Challenge to encourage quilters to donate quilts to worthy causes  This year, three groups have been chosen to receive quilts.  The three groups:  Quilts of Compassion, Happy Chemo, and Students of the Gladeville Baptist Church (who will be delivering quilts to survivors of Hurricane Sandy) offer three distinct choices for quilters interested in participating.  Quilters who sign up to participate before Sunday, March 22nd will be eligible for the special prize drawing.  Sign-ups will continue to be accepted after that date, but the sign-up prize will no longer be offered. If you don't win the sign-up prize, all is not lost.  Sarah always manages to recruit lots of wonderful sponsors to offer giveaways to those who donate quilts.  Check out Sarah's blog for a thorough explanation that will guide you through all you need to participate in the Hands 2 Help Challenge.  You can click on the link on the right hand side of the blog.  There are lots of deserving people who need your help and you can sign up only a click away.

Friday, March 7, 2014

March Goals and

I did not manage to complete my goal for February, so this month it's back at the top of the list.  My Bungle Jungle 2 baby quilt.  Everyday, I get up determined to work on it, but I always find something to distract me.
 On Monday, there was grocery shopping that needed to be done.  On the way home, we stopped at Christie's Quilting Boutique which is about 30 minutes away at 176 Main Street, Norwalk, Connecticut.  In the past few years, seven quilt shops within a 45 minute driving range have closed and one moved 40 minutes farther north.  When Christie opened her shop in the fall, it was like manna in the desert.  In addition to her new brick and mortar store, she also sells fabric online at her Etsy shop.
At the front of the shop, she has a quilting frame set up for anyone who wants to sit and take a stitch



 She has a whole case of Jennifer Paganelli  fabric and  patterns with samples made up in her fabrics.  Unfortunately, I forgot to take a picture.  Jennifer will be at the store on Saturday, March 15th to celebrate Quilting Day
Christie is friendly and helpful and makes you feel comfortable the minute you walk through the door.  The store is convenient to I95 and the Merritt Parkway, so if you're in the area, you should definitely stop by.  With quilt shops becoming an endangered species it's great to be able to support a local shop.

I did manage to add a teal row to my Rainbow Zig Zag quilt and make one teal postage stamp block
 I added more rows to my pink Zig Zag quilt.  I still need to cut more setting triangles before I sew the blocks together.


I am linking up my March goal with the Goal Setting Party at Sew BitterSweet Designs for A Lovely Year of Finishes
I am also linking up with all of the other quilters who are participating in the Rainbow Scrap Challenge.  I'll add the link when it's up.



Saturday, March 1, 2014

February Wrap-Up

Although I didn't spend as much time sewing as I would have liked to this month, I managed to finish 147 blocks.  That's definitely more than the goal of thirty blocks that was set for the 350 Block Challenge at Prairie Moon Quilts.  The goal for March is thirty.  If I keep sewing at my current pace, I should be able to surpass that number.  I have now completed 196 blocks during the first two months of 2014. That number does not include the blocks for my Zig Zag quilts.  They are so easy to put together, they hardly even seem like blocks.

 I know many people don't like to repeat a quilt once they are finished, but I find the repetition of a simple block very calming. Once I make a quilt, if I like it, I always think of easier ways to piece it and want to try my ideas right away.  I do agree, that starting a third Zig Zag quilt in the span of two months is a little bizarre.  Hopefully, I can break myself of the addiction during March.

These are the blocks I sewed for Film at Five this week.
 I have now completed all of the blocks for the top.  The original Film at Five pattern at Wedding Dress Blue finishes at 86.5 inches square.  I wanted a rectangular quilt, so this one will finish at 70 x 86.5.

I've had this abstract pink fabric for a long time and really wanted to use it up.
I think it works great against the crisp white for a Zig Zag quilt.  The strips are completely cut and my goal is to finish piecing the blocks this week.
I also made four 9 patch blocks to use in a free 9 Patch table runner pattern by Sherri at A Quilting Life

The bad news is, I did not complete my goal for February to finish my Bungle Jungle 2 quilt.  It is definitely on the top of my list for March.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Wrap Up - Third Week of February

Not much sewing going on around here this week.  I only had the opportunity to sit down and sew twice.  I only finished one scrappy pink block to add to the pile for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge.

I did manage to sew 49 blocks for my Film At Five quilt. I like it more with every block I sew.  The pattern finishes at 86.5 inches square.  I may change the size to make it smaller, but I haven't decided yet.  These are the blocks I made this week.
 This is all of the blocks so far.

My lovely daughter came home from  graduate school on Thursday and we drove her back today. The entire time she was home was spent doing her wash, shopping for groceries for her to take back and preparing a lesson plan for an interview she has for at a nursery school later this week.  Working on the items for her "Hibernation" lesson plan was fun. I really miss my days teaching little people.   Of course, buying the materials and preparing them cut into my sewing time.  Our initial enthusiasm was squashed when we realized that the plastic bears she bought were a choking hazard.
Instead, I cut out 80 tiny bears from foam sheets.


The bears will be used for a pre-Math game.  The children will place the correct number of bears in the cave.  It features representational one-to-one counting, as well as, number and word recognition.  The little spots encourage the children to place a bear next to its "night light".


Even though, I only finished one scrappy pink block, some of my Film at Five blocks are also pink so I am linking up with the other Rainbow Scrap Challenge participants at Sew Scrappy.  Stop by and take a look at the lovely items made from pink.