Friday, July 19, 2013

Working the string blocks, baby quilt and more!

Every morning as soon as I get up, I work on my string quilt blocks.  I go straight to the coffee pot, make hot water for my tea and while that is brewing, I sew my 4 1/2 inch string blocks. I have a large supply of strips of various size widths, colors and patterns in a drawer next to my sewing machine. I pull out the strips, sew it onto a foundation paper made from my old phone book and keep repeating until I have 10 blocks sewn. I end the chain piecing with a foundation paper sized 2 1/2 by 8 1/2 inches.  It is from these little "feeder" blocks that I made my granddaughter's "baby doll" quilt.

I know that sounds very organized, but trust me its not!  Sometimes I run out of fabric strips and have to run to my scrap box and clean cut the scraps into various sized strips to put in my drawer next to the sewing machine. I have several plastic boxes full of these scraps. I am trying to justify keeping them or "hoarding" them, as my husband calls it. 

These are scraps left from years of cutting butterflies, cats, hexagons, triangles for my customers' orders.  There are all sizes and weird shaped pieces left.  But, if I cut just so, I can get several strips of different widths and many, many triangles of different sizes! I can't even begin to think of throwing all that fabric away! If that makes me a hoarder, so be it!

I have already made enough blocks to put together a quilt top from these scraps that you can see here Click Here   But, it was not big enough to drape over the side of my double bed.  So that's why I am sewing more blocks.  Plus, after I finish this one, I am making 2 more for my other kids. I think then maybe, I will have used all the scraps in the plastic boxes, LOL!!!

In the meantime, remember the "baby doll" quilt?  Well I finally decided, I am going to quilt it on the machine.  Even though I am not very experienced in machine quilting, I think I will manage with this one because it is so small. I will post a picture when I am done, maybe on Monday???

My hexagon quilt progress will be posted tomorrow!

Have a great time quilting!


Tuesday, July 16, 2013

They're Coming! They're Coming!

I feel like Paul Revere with that title. LOL! But, I am excited about my daughter's family visit. She called last night to say they would be here in 2 weeks!

Just barely have enough time to finish my granddaughter's baby doll quilt. I will have to stop working on my string quilt and my cross stitch project and finish that little quilt.

Maybe I should just machine stitch it together with the backing??  What do you think?

If I go ahead with the tying, I can tie it every 2 or 3 inches. The quilt top measures approximately 24"x 26".  If I tie every 2 inches, that means I will have 12 across by 13 down which equals 156 ties. Am I capable of finishing that many ties in 2 weeks? and then do the binding?

The binding is another question. I always do bindings by hand! Should I hand bind or machine bind? Help me out folks what would you do? It's really not a big quilt, but I also have to organize, stash, clean, dust, vacuum and child proof the cabin for their visit.  My granddaughter is only 2 years old, so I have to go over the cabin with a fine tooth comb to child proof.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.  I will start finishing it tomorrow.  Today my "dance card" is already full of preparations for the visit.

I will post the final decision as to the finishing of the baby quilt.  Let me know what you think!

Keep on quilting!

Monday, July 15, 2013

Baby! Baby! Baby Doll That Is!

I have finished putting together the Baby Doll Quilt for my granddaughter. And, as promised I have several pictures.

Let me start at the beginning:

I wanted to use scraps for this little quilt because I have been sewing "feeder" paper strips after every step of sewing blocks for other projects.  I have several of these "feeder" paper foundation blocks.  They measure approximately 8 1/2" x 2 1/2". I say approximately because I don't cut them precisely with a ruler. I just take a sheet of 8 1/2 x 11 sheet of paper and cut across the sheet.  I can get 4 strips out of each sheet of paper. I use printer paper that I have already printed on both sides; which I do frequently when testing out sizes of patterns or designing a pattern.  Instead of just chucking them in the trash, I recycle them into these strips to be used for foundation piecing.

So, I took three of these strips and sewed them end to end and came up with an approximate size of the width of the Baby Doll Quilt.  Here is what three strips look like sewn together. I do not remove the paper foundation until the whole blanket is sewn together. This gives the little pieces more stability while I am working with them. Once the blanket is sewn together, I do not need the paper because they have been sewn cross and lengthwise so they have stability on their own.

Once I had sewn enough of these "strip blocks" together, I laid out the little quilt.

I separated the strips because laid out together, with no spaces between strips was too small. So I decided to put some sashing in between each "strip block". Now it was larger. Here it is laid out with the sashing.

Now it was starting to look very nice.  But, I thought it was too small to actually wrap the baby doll in it. So I added another strip and another sashing. Here it is all sewn together with 1 1/2" sashing and 1 1/2" borders.  I put the baby doll on top to make sure that it was big enough to wrap around the doll.  It is!
It measures approximately 24" x 26". The next step is to remove the paper foundations.

I will not put any batting in it because I do not want it to be too bulky for my granddaughter to hold.  The backing is the only thing left for me to add besides the binding and tying. I am planning on tying it with a very thin ribbon. All the fabrics used on this blanket were scraps, even the sashing, backing, and ribbon for tying.  I will post a picture of the completed project.

Hope you enjoyed my journey.  If you have any questions, please feel free to use the contact form on this blog.

Happy quilting!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Flea Market ! Again?

Today, we left early for the flea market. I was determined to find the "pie lady" and "biscochitos" from last week and buy some more.  They were sooooo scrumptious!

Well, once again, my husband couldn't wait till we got to Las Vegas to eat.  This time though, I was also hungry. So, we decided to go to "Kristie's Korner Kafe" down the road from Mora. Mora is 14 miles from our cabin and is our "local" shopping area.  It has a grocery store, several restaurants, churches, schools, library, etc. Kristie's Korner Kafe is one of the better restaurants.  It is very small, only has 6 tables, but is very popular with the locals. Why? because it has great food!  We had breakfast there.  Of course my husband had red chili, let me correct that, red New Mexico chili with his breakfast. Restaurants in New Mexico always have New Mexico chili and the waitress will always ask "Red, Green or Christmas?" "Christmas?" That is a concoction made of both red and green chili . . ."Christmas"! I have never tried "Christmas" chili because I don't care for green chili, but my husband says it's great! He loves either color!!!

So we finish breakfast and off we go to LV.  When we get to the "Flea Market" I noticed that there weren't very many people shopping. My husband says it's probably too early for shoppers. Everyone is probably still in church!  Then I noticed that there were only 5 or 6 vendors!  I know this flea market is small, but this is ridiculous! I was so disappointed :( !  I was really looking forward to an apple pie and biscochitos for the week.

So I kept walking down the aisle and I spied an ironing board attached to some weird contraption. I stopped to look and found an ironing board that converts to a step ladder that converts to a chair.  Here is a picture of it as an ironing board

 This is the way to use it as a stepstool.

And last but not least . . .as a chair!

Isn't it amazing? Have you ever seen anything like it? Please comment if you have. I would love to hear if someone knows what it is called and from what time period it comes.

I loved it! My husband loved it! (which is very unusual) Needless to say, we bought it!!!

After our excursion into the "miniature" sized flea market, we went to Walmart to buy a few groceries and then came home.  Just in time I might say because as we drove into our driveway, a downpour started that has lasted for twenty minutes.  It tapering down some but it is still thunder and lightening and intermittent showers.

My quilting project for today is to finish sewing the "Baby Doll" quilt for my granddaughter. I will post a picture of it when I finish sewing it together tomorrow!

"Talk" to you tomorrow! Keep quilting!