Red Scribbles Finished

Red Scribbles completed
Red Scribbles completed

I finally finished Red Scribbles about two weeks ago. It is has been go-go-go here, so I didn’t post until now.

I only had to finish the binding, which shouldn’t have taken very long except that I am not getting a lot of handwork done since we are working on the giant puzzle. I also had some other handwork projects with firm deadlines.

I started this quilt in 2016 after doing the January challenge for the Mighty Lucky Quilting Club.

This quilt took a long time to come together, but I am really pleased with how it came out. As a result, I am now teaching the bias tape technique as part of my basic quiltmaking class. I haven’t written up a tutorial, so you’ll just have to pay me to teach you!

Red Scribbles Completed - back
Red Scribbles Completed – back

I think this might constitute the start of a series. I gave another quilt to my SIL when DH’s brother died and now I have given this quilt to my husband’s sister and her husband. Of course, my sister has received at least two quilts.

SIL and BIL came over to get it close to their anniversary. Too bad I was teaching when they eventually showed up, because I didn’t get to hear their comments. DH handled everything and got photos as well, so it was fine.

This quilt has encouraged me to get back to Who Am I? Instead of doing a lot of satin stitching for the words, I plan to use bias tape. I have to experiment with widths of bias tape.

For now, I am pleased that I am moving forward.

 

Birthday Extravaganza

Happy Birthday
Happy Birthday

My birthday was last week and I received A LOT of gifts. It was so nice of everyone to think of me again.

Modern Handmade Purchases - January 2021
Modern Handmade Purchases – January 2021

I also got to go and use a gift card I received in December at Modern Handmade. I haven’t been to a quilt shop in ages and that one is definitely a favorite.

2021 Gifts from Julie
2021 Gifts from Julie

Friend Julie met me there. While we were waiting for the shop to open, Julie gave me a large bag of gifts, which included a Mini Oliso iron and Mini Maker Case!!

She always knows what to get for me. I love the Mini Maker Case, but I am also really excited about the The Elements of Color** book. Johannes Itten is a master of color. I use his color wheel, called the Color Star**, all the time

In the evening, my mom came over and brought a cake (made from the wonderful Alternative Baker** cookbook) along with some of my favorite Jamoca Almond Fudge ice cream. It was great to see her and my stepdad. I don’t get to see them enough with this COVID thing going on. It was great to be able to have a little visit.

UPDATED 2/8/2021:

10" Clammy
10″ Clammy

I got two other gifts after I wrote this post. I want all the gifts to be in one post. I received the 10 inch Clammy**, which means I have a full set. I still have to try them out. After reading the directions, I am pretty excited about trying it. I have long wanted to piece circles into a background. I took a class a long time ago, but I think the Clammy method might be less fiddly. What I also need for my birthday is a quilt patron: someone who will pay me a salary and I can just sew to my heart’s content. A girl can dream, right?

Martelli rotating mat
Martelli rotating mat

I have a rotating cutting mat, but I don’t really like it because it is square. I frequently get hit in the stomach by one of the corners. It’s not like I get injured or anything, but it is annoying. This new rotating mat**, from my darling YM, is round. I don’t get hit in the stomach, which I like, and I have been trying it out with some of the shapes I am teaching my students lately.

 

 

 

 

 

 

**I use affiliate links and may be paid for your purchase of an item when you click on an item link in my post. There is no additional cost to you for clicking or purchasing items I recommend. I appreciate your clicks and purchases as it helps support this blog.

BAM Officer Appreciation Gifts

Organizing 2021 Officer Appreciation Gifts
Organizing 2021 Officer Appreciation Gifts

Last Saturday was the first guild meeting of the year. Traditionally, we have given the officers appreciation gifts at this meeting. COVID-19 or no COVID-19, 2021  was no exception.

Maria's Officer Appreciation Bag 2021
Maria’s Officer Appreciation Bag 2021

Mary C was kind enough to be  the drop-off point. Her house is more centrally located in the county than mine and she has a good porch. With county rules on sheltering-in-place and ‘travel’ because of COVID-19, this year was a little harder to organize. People had to mail their gifts, or drop them off, as allowed. Also, I tried to be sensitive about costs and encouraged people to write notes instead of buying a gift. I also offered up notepaper, etc for people who were really struggling.

Last week I went over to Mary C’s house and we assembled the bags, physically distancing and wearing masks. Mary C has a wonderful backyard and I am always happy to spend time there.

Members of the guild came through magnificently! A few members made bags so we could contain the other gifts. I couldn’t believe the effort that people took with the small gifts. If last year was good, this year was better. We got an amazing array of gifts. I don’t know how we will match it next year.

Maria's Officer Appreciation Bag 2021 items-detail 1
Maria’s Officer Appreciation Bag 2021 items-detail 1

Mary C went out at the last moment and got the gift bags (large pink bag in the above photo) so we could ‘wrap’ them. We had to drop the bags off at officer’s houses and we wanted it to be less easy for them to peek before the meeting.

Lots of zipper bags, but also supplies like needles, Iron Off, and Quilt Soap. Embellishments, gift cards and fabric were also in evidence.

I was so pleased and the officers were very happy. It wasn’t as good as doing the whole thing in person. however, it meant we got to spend more time organizing the bags so they looked pretty.

Spiky 16 Patch Tutorial

This is more of a guideline than a tutorial. It will teach you how to make the Spiky 16 Patch block in a general way. You will need to review the Studio180 video and know how to do basic piecing.

This block is my own design and uses Half Rectangle Triangles (HRTs) and 2.5 inch squares to make a 16 inch (finished) block. I have used these blocks to make a number of donation quilts.

Supplies:

  • Fabric:
    • 16-2.5 inch squares
    • 8 -2.5 inch squares for foreground
    • 8-2.5 inch squares for background
    • 5 inch strip of foreground – you’ll have to work through what width you need. I use scraps, so I don’t know the exact length
    • 5 inch strip of background fabric
    • Background fabric for corner squares
  • rotary cutter
  • rotary cutting ruler large enough to cut 5 inch strips
  •  Split Recs ruler** (By Deb Tucker)
  • Optional: 4.5 x 8.5 inch Creative Grids ruler** to cut smaller squares
  • Optional: Mary Ellen’s Best Press (or similar)
  • Optional: pins
  • sharp trimmers or scissors
  • thread for piecing
  • Iron
  • ironing surface
  • sewing machine in good working order
  • Computer or other device capable of viewing YouTube
  • Internet connection

Fabric Units Needed

This is a repeat of above, but with, perhaps, some additional information

  • 8 – 2.5 inch squares (unfinished) from background fabrics
  • 8 – 2.5 inch squares (unfinished) from foreground fabrics
  • 8 – 2 inch x 4 inch (finished) left facing half rectangle triangles (half foreground and half background)
  • 8 – 2 inch x 4 inch (finished) right facing half rectangle triangles (half foreground and half background)
  • 4 – 4.5 inch (unfinished)  squares from background fabrics

Center of block:

Take your 2.5 inch squares and sew them into 4- 4 patches

Blue Square Donation Block
Blue Square Donation Block

Sew your 4 patches together into a 16 patch as shown above.

I start with 5″ strips for the 2 in x 4 in (finished) HRTs. Remember: I am using the Split Recs ruler and it uses that size strip for the HRTs. You can make your HRTs using whatever method is convenient. Make sure they end up 2 inch x 4 inch finished.

It is really important to take the time to look at the Studio180 Split Recs video. It will make your life a lot easier.

Cut and trim HRTs using Split Recs ruler
Cut and trim HRTs using Split Recs ruler

Following the directions in the video, cut, sew and trim your HRT pieces:

  • 8 right facing triangles
  • 8 left facing triangles
Spiky Star in progress
Spiky Star in progress

Once you have sewn and trimmed your HRTs place them with your 16 patch, like the photo above. Note: until you sew the HRTs together, the laid out block will look uneven as my example above shows. The bottom left hand HRTs are already sewn together and you can see how they fit nicely next to the squares in the 16 patch.

Spiky Star laid out
Spiky Star laid out

Cut 4 corner squares from background fabric 4.5 inches by 4.5 inches. Sometimes I use a variety of background fabrics when I am cutting from scraps. It adds interest to the block. Just make sure you have enough contrast.

Group of 4 HRTs
Group of 4 HRTs

Start sewing your HRTs together into groups of 4.

 

Sew HRT units to center 16 Patch
Sew HRT units to center 16 Patch

Once I have the four HRT units, I sew one to each side, starting with the sides. Above shows the center block with two HRT groups of 4 sewn to the sides.

Group of 4 HRTs with background squares
Group of 4 HRTs with background squares

Once part of the block is made, I start making the last two sections, the top and the bottom.

Take one HRT section and sew it to a 4.5 x 4.5 background square. Sew the second background square to the other side of the HRT section. Do this step again for the top.

Spiky Star - 3 sections
Spiky Star – 3 sections

You will end up with 3 sections.

Complete Spiky Star block
Complete Spiky Star block

Sew one HRT/background square section to the top and then sew the second section to the bottom of the center section.  Once you have done this, press and your block is complete.

There are other ways to make the HRTs for this block. This is the method I use. Take a look at the Spiky 16 Patch blocks and quilts I have made using this technique.

 

 

 

**I use affiliate links and may be paid for your purchase of an item when you click on an item link in my post. There is no additional cost to you for clicking or purchasing items I recommend. I appreciate your clicks and purchases as it helps support this blog.

Pink Kaffe Quilt Continues

Pink Kaffe Quilt - 1st pieced border
Pink Kaffe Quilt – 1st pieced border

I am really enjoying this quilt. When I talked about it after I started cutting, I was happy. This quilt is just a joy to work on. I don’t know why for sure. The only thing I can think of is that I love all the fabric.

Pink is not a great color for my decor or for an adult woman, but I love pink anyway. I am thinking of this quilt as a complete indulgence in my love for pink and Philip Jacobs flowers. I am not worrying about how it doesn’t fit in with my home decor. I am really loving selecting and fussy cutting the flowers, getting reacquainted with some of my Philip Jacobs fabric and using fabulous solids.

How to Make an Altoids Tin Sewing Kit

DH, apparently, has an Altoids habit. I had no idea until he came home and started to work remotely. I asked him to save me a couple of tins and suddenly I had 8 to work with. I wanted to make small sewing kits for the guild officers. I looked for tutorials. The one I liked was DIY Felt Magnet. It turned out, however, that I mostly fumbled along on my own during Craft Nights.

One key was letting everything dry thoroughly after I glued it.

Finished Altoids Sewing Kits
Finished Altoids Sewing Kits

Supply List:

  • Altoids tins – you can use different tins by adjusting the size of the various pieces.
  • cardboard (I used a cereal box)
  •  a few colors of felt**
    • a small band 3/8 inch by 2 1/4 inches
    • rectangle 2 inches x 2 inches
  • stuffing – use wool roving** if you want a really good pincushion or just regular poly Fiberfill** if you won’t use the pincushion that often
  • scissors
  • sewing machine
  • sewing machine thread** which matches your contrasting felt or is a neutral color
  • quilting** or other relatively thick thread
  • Aleene’s glue** – I am sure other glues, like school glue, will work. I found the Aleene’s to be really great. It stuck fast.
  • 3/4 inch bias tape maker**
  • fabric
    • strip 1-1/2 inches wide x 12 inches long
    • rectangle 5.5″ x 8″
  • wax paper**
  • WonderClips**
  • Perl cotton**
  • Hand embroidery needle**

Lining

I wanted to cover all the advertising and nutritional information with fabric. I used felt so I wouldn’t have to worry about the raw edges.

First, I made a cardboard template.  To make the template, I traced around the bottom of the Altoids tin. Then I cut out the template and made sure it fit in the following places:

  • bottom
  • inside bottom
  • inside top

I wanted full coverage in all of those places.

Next, I cut out pieces of felt for the inside top, the inside bottom and the bottom. Set aside the pieces for the inside top and 

Put down some waxed paper to protect your work surface. On the waxed paper, I glued the other two pieces to the the inside bottom and the bottom.

Set the tin aside and let the pieces dry thoroughly.

Trim

Cut a strip of fabric 1-1/2 inches wide x 12 inches long. Use your bias tape maker to make some trim. This piece does not have to be on the bias.

Set aside.

WonderClip Band and Needle Holder

Check to be sure your other pieces are glued securely to the tin and the glue is dry.

Inside of Altoids Sewing Kit
Inside of Altoids Sewing Kit

You will need the piece you cut from the template and set aside.

Third, I cut two pieces of contrasting colored felt (if you want these pieces to show). I cut a small band 3/8 inch by 2 1/4 inches (or the width of your tin) and a rectangle 2 inches x 2 inches.

Fourth, sew the band 1/2 inch up from the bottom of your set aside piece.

Fifth, center your 2×2 rectangle 3/8 inch down from the top and sew the rectangle to your set aside piece. Sew very close to the top edge of the felt rectangle. You may have to adjust it, so you don’t cover the WonderClip band.

Next, put down some waxed paper to protect your work surface. Glue your section with the WonderClip band and needle holder to the inside top of your tin.

Set the tin aside and let it dry thoroughly.

Pincushion

Seventh, take your 5.5″ x 8″ fabric rectangle and baste by hand with large stitches a shape that approximates the shape of the Altoids tin top (rectangle with round corners). 

Next, tighten the basting to the approximate shape of the top of the tin.

Side view of Altoids tin Sewing Kit
Side view of Altoids tin Sewing Kit

Ninth, stuff the fabric with wool roving or Fiber Fill, keeping it in the shape of the top of the tin, but puffy.

Tenth, fold the excess fabric on the bottom so the wool roving stays inside. You may need to trim the fabric if it overlaps too much. Make sure the shape fits the top of the Altoids tin.

Next, put down some waxed paper to protect your work surface. Apply glue to the top of the tin and apply the pincushion. Adjust the shape to fit as needed. Press and hold for a few moments so it stays in place.

Set the tin aside and let it dry thoroughly.

Applying Trim

Check to be sure your pincushion is glued securely to the top of the tin and the glue is dry.

Put down some waxed paper to protect your work surface.

Dot glue on one short end of the tin along the bottom of the lid only.  Press the bottom of the trim piece on the glue. Secure to the pincushion with a pin.

Set the tin aside and let it dry thoroughly.

After the end is dry, dot glue around the rest of the bottom of the tin and press the trim to the glue. Pull tight as you press.

End of Altoids tin
End of Altoids tin

Overlap the end and cut the end of the trim strip so you have piece of the top of the trim that you can fold under to cover the raw edge of the beginning of the strip. Pin in place to allow the glue to dry.

Set the tin aside and let the glue dry thoroughly.

Finishing

Side view of Altoids tin Sewing Kit
Side view of Altoids tin Sewing Kit

Take your Perl Cotton and stitch along the edge of your trim. Use a basic running stitch or some kind of fancy stitch, if you want. Start away from the hem of the trim. Stitch all the way around, catching the pincushion fabric in the stitch as you sew.  You may need to tuck bits of the pincushion under the trim. Finish near the hemmed section and bury the thread as you would in a quilt.

If this is a gift, put a pin and a WonderClip into the tin to show your recipient how the features work.

Enjoy!

 

 

 

**I use affiliate links and may be paid for your purchase of an item when you click on an item link in my post. There is no additional cost to you for clicking or purchasing items I recommend. I appreciate your clicks and purchases as it helps support this blog.

BAM Door Prize Organization

BAM January Door Prize
BAM January Door Prize

Yesterday was the first time we gave a door prize in 2021. The bag isn’t as full as some were last year, but we are trying to tone them down a bit.

Tim made the bag. SueG made the zipper pouch. Carrie made the coasters, pattern weights and the thread catcher (not shown). The other items were all donations one way or another. I enjoy the team effort.

Earlier this week, I received a big box of items from Carrie. She made coasters, pattern weights and thread catchers for all of the months of this year. She did the work in record time without any fuss! It was fabulous.

Once I got all of Carrie’s contributions, I decided to organize the offerings. I got everything out of the bag and laid it all out. I put as much as I could into SueG’s zipper pouch. Not everything would fit, so I put each month’s gifts temporarily into a plastic zipper bag until I get more containers for the months.

Door Prize Organization System
Door Prize Organization System

Sewing Kit Officer Thank You Gifts

Finished Altoids Sewing Kits
Finished Altoids Sewing Kits

DH, apparently, has an Altoids habit. I had no idea until he came home and started to work remotely. I asked him to save me a couple of tins and suddenly I had 8 to work with. I wanted to make small sewing kits for the guild officers. I looked for tutorials. The one I liked was DIY Felt Magnet. It turned out, however, that I mostly fumbled along on my own during Craft Nights. Check back in a few days for a tutorial of my own.

One key was letting everything dry thoroughly after I glued it.

Finished Sewing Kits - open
Finished Sewing Kits – open

I am pretty pleased with the way the sewing kits came out. I would have done some things differently if I had known, but I didn’t.

I am particularly pleased with the WonderClips** band. I think that is genius. I know I am tooting my own horn and I don’t want you to think I have a big head, but I was trying to think of a solution for storing some WonderClips along the lines of the clippy pocket I made for the UCAB. I wonder if I can sew some bands and add those instead of going through all of the Clippy pocket steps?

Sewing Kits showing Trim
Sewing Kits showing Trim

The other thing I realized was that I could use the bias tape makers to make almost perfect trim by cutting fabric on the straight of the grain and applying it like trim. There was no messing around with the iron, trying to get the trim straight. No burned fingers or frustration. Those bias tape makers** are fun to use and I am finding them to be more and more helpful.

I delivered these on Wednesday when Mary and I put the Officer Appreciation gift bags together.

 

 

 

 

 

 

**I use affiliate links and may be paid for your purchase of an item when you click on an item link in my post. There is no additional cost to you for clicking or purchasing items I recommend. I appreciate your clicks and purchases as it helps support this blog.

Gazebo Finished

Journey 2 Nebula icon
Journey 2 Nebula icon

So, the Journey 2 Nebula is finished. I finished all the projects which were part of the ‘Journey’ and the rulers have been returned to Amy. I am not making the Nebula quilt. If you like hexagons, you should try it. It is an interesting design. I am happy with the small projects I made during this Journey 2 Nebula and am moving on to other designs.

Gazebo Finished
Gazebo Finished

Gazebo, as I mentioned, is the one project about which I was really excited. I did all the projects in order and waited patiently to get to this one.

This project, like all the others, was pretty easy. I was able to start and finish it in less than a day. This is an example of the excellent directions provided by the pattern.

 

 

 

 

 

**I use affiliate links and may be paid for your purchase of an item when you click on an item link in my post. There is no additional cost to you for clicking or purchasing items I recommend. I appreciate your clicks and purchases as it helps support this blog

Finished: Sew Together Bags

I finally finished the Sew Together Bags and they are now in the hands of their new owners.

The outsides used different fabrics and embellishments, as I mentioned, but the insides were similar. I used most of the same fabrics for the insides. While the white insides make tools and supplies easy to find, I think they are a bit boring and might use one or two pieces of colored fabric to break up the white next time (yes, I am sure there will be a next time. 😉  )

As I mentioned in one post, the placement of the hexagon embellishment feature was off. I tried a few different things and considered some others. In the end, I left the original embellishment where it was and added a couple of extra hexagons. I think it looks nice and the original embellishment provides a surprise for the bottom if anyone looks there.

The recipients all claimed to enjoy their new bags. Tim doesn’t do much handwork, so I hope he finds a use for this bag.

Drawstring Bags

Drawstring Bag - Project size
Drawstring Bag – Project size

I have made various sizes of the drawstring bags from the Jeni Baker pattern a number of times. I had an idea to use them as gift bags and, more recently, I made one to house some juggling balls. At the last minute, I grabbed some Marcia Derse fabric that has been nagging me lately to make some more of these bags.

I have made her bags using the free tutorial a few times, including one for the juggling balls, but also bought the pattern, which has a number of different sizes.

Drawstring Bag - Artist size
Drawstring Bag – Artist size

Last week I cut out two – the Artist size and the smaller Project size. They go together very quickly once cut and are really great for wrapping gifts.

I do like that Marcia Derse squares fabric. I think it is a little hard to use, though, except for, maybe, on the back of a quilt. I think this is a good use for it.

I bought some twill tape awhile ago. I used that for the handles, but am not 100% happy with the look. I may go back and make handles that match.

Now that these are made, I am not sure how I will use them.

Retreat Pouch Finished

Sometime ago I bought the frames for the Retreat pouch. The Retreat pouch is a free pattern from Emmaline Bags. The pattern, as I said, is free, but the frames are not.

Retreat Pouch closed
Retreat Pouch closed

Over the New Year holiday, I decided I was going to make some bags, the supplies for which had been hanging around. The Retreat pouch was one of the bags I sewed.

I started out with the small size, which is about 8 inches x 4 inches. I didn’t think the small size was tiny. Once cut out, this is not a difficult bag to put together. I was able to finish it in a couple of hours while I catted with a friend.

Retreat Pouch open
Retreat Pouch open

I thought the installation of the frame was a little weird because the pattern says to remove stitches you have already sewed in order to install the frame. The pattern didn’t say whether to sew up the hole that I made, so I did.

I just used a frame for the Sheffield Tool Bag. That pattern uses a casing to house the frame. Since I haven’t used a lot of frames in bags, I don’t know what is normal. I prefer the casing.

I plan to use this pouch for my bag making tools. I might need to make the larger version for the tools as I have a lot of them, but I plan to make the larger one anyway.

I found a video that shows how to add handles and make some other changes to the bag while showing how to make the pouch. I have watched it, but I didn’t watch while making this pouch. I may add handles to my next one.

N.B. on Frames: I still don’t have a good handle on frames. I know how to install them in a bag or pouch in a couple of ways, but I don’t know if different frames can be interchanged in different bags. I haven’t made enough bags with frames to understand them very well.

Pink Kaffe Quilt Start

Pink Kaffe Quilt Start
Pink Kaffe Quilt Start

I know I talked about my plans a month or so ago, but hadn’t started it yet.  After thinking about this quilt for awhile, I finally started it and it is making me super happy.

I am following the directions in Kaffe’s book, Quilts in the Cotswolds**. However, I am not using many of the fabrics he suggests. I am pulling out the Philip Jacobs fabrics I have stashed for awhile and have not yet used for backs. I am fussy cutting flowers from them and arranging them in a pleasing way. I  have also used, so far, one Anna Maria Horner print and one Martha Negley print.  I’ll probably had more different prints. The flowers are by no means in their final location. I want to spread them out so the pinks are not all together. For now I am placing them in the order I cut them so I can easily count them.

Stash Fabrics Art Gallery solids
Stash Fabrics Art Gallery solids

For the sashing, I am using solids I recently purchased from Stash Fabrics. I plan to arrange them in gradation order and use a different solid for each section, gradating out from light to dark.

Every day I  have been spending a little time cutting. I may need to sew some pieces and parts together to gain space on my design wall, but that is a decision for another day. In the meantime I am enjoying showcasing the beautiful flowers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

**I use affiliate links and may be paid for your purchase of an item when you click on an item link in my post. There is no additional cost to you for clicking or purchasing items I recommend. I appreciate your clicks and purchases as it helps support this blog.

Past Gifts for Mom – Revised

Someone commented on the Paint Tube fabric when I was at Sew Day. I sent along the post I wrote about past gifts I have given to my mom. It has been awhile, so I decided to update it. I might do another update after her birthday, but here are the various gifts I have made for her with different artist fabrics I have collected.

I was able to find the Sweet Dreams pillowcase. I forgot I made that for her. I also have a few in the pipeline for Mother’s Day and I am sure I will make more for Christmas.