Fabric of the Year 2019 4 Patches

Fabric of the Year 2019 - mid-November 2
Fabric of the Year 2019 – mid-November 2

I am making good progress with FOTY 2019 once the pairs were sewn together. There is a lot of sewing, but the larger the chunks I have to sew, the faster it goes. I am hopeful that I will be done with this soon and can move on.

Charming Donation Top

Yes, I have been working on a lot of donation tops lately. That is how it goes during the piecing of Fabric of the Year quilts. 1) there is a lot of piecing; 2) I have to keep the pieces in order and subtle changes in color are not always obvious in the wrong place until the whole thing is sewn together and 3) I can’t not sew with leaders and enders. Not using leaders and enders just seems wrong. Thus, I have made a few donation quilts.

Charming Donation Top
Charming Donation Top

This donation top is an offshoot of a pattern Peggy modified, the Plus quilt.I made one using our standard postage stamp donation blocks and wasn’t super excited. Someone will like it, but I wanted to modify it.

I wanted to make the top a little bigger, so I used charm squares to make up the plus instead of the blocks. I don’t think it really worked the way I intended. I only gained an inch on each side. That is why I added the borders. Not very modern of me, I know, but someone will like it.

It also went together very quickly. I made the whole thing in a few hours, which is always a bonus.

That Nicey Jane fabric (with the giant dots) was laying around bugging me. I am glad it will go to a good home.

FOTY 2019 Sewing Progress

Despite fighting with my blog technology, it hasn’t really stopped me from sewing. Even if I can’t talk about my project, I still want to make the projects. I am happier when I can talk about the projects, but making them is primary.

Fabric of the Year 2019 - mid-November
Fabric of the Year 2019 – mid-November

As a result, I have been working hard on FOTY 2019.

Even if I have only a few minutes, I have been sewing a few squares together. I have most of the pairs sewn together and will work on sewing the pairs into 4 patches over the weekend.

Pinwheel Donation Top

 I saw a pinwheel quilt. Since I am trying to teach my students about block structure, I showed them this quilt. I was trying to make the point that they  had the skills to make it.

I was amazed when one of them came up with a method of making the quilt that was completely different than what I was thinking. She was thinking QSTs and I was thinking Flying Geese. I was so impressed that she was really thinking about how to make it. It validated that I was getting through.

Pinwheel Donation Quilt
Pinwheel Donation Quilt

I decided to make the quilt her way – using QSTs – to see what I thought. I ended up thinking there too many seams  and think I will try the pattern using Flying Geese. Still! I am just excited that a skill I think is really valuable is getting through.

I made the back also, but don’t think I took a picture and the whole package is off to the Community Quilt chair for quilting, etc.

Candy Dish Progresses

Journey 2 Nebula icon
Journey 2 Nebula icon

I finally made progress on the Journey2Nebula projects. I had started Candy Dish right before the Big Blog Blow-up and then didn’t make much progress. I also haven’t started the last project, Gazebo, which is sad. I really like that project and wanted to do that one most.

Candy Dish Cushion Top
Candy Dish Cushion Top

I still have to trim Candy Dish and make it into a cushion cover, but I finished the piecing over the weekend in between working on FOTY 2019.

Bad Tech Week

Nobody died.

It still has been a difficult couple of weeks in blog world. As you may have noticed, my site has been down. There are a lot of complicated reasons that are boring and not  quilt related. Trust me, you don’t want to know.

The bottomline is that I have to pay  more for hosting, but customer service was so terrible that I was able to negotiate several months for free.

Fortunately, I  have still been sewing. Stay tuned for an update.

Past Gifts for Julie

Friend Julie’s birthday is coming up. It is quickly followed by Christmas. I always enjoy making her a few things. She uses and appreciates (or seems to!) my efforts.

Last year, I made a list of what I had made for her. I am doing it again this year, because the list last year was so much smaller than my memory  said it was. I worked hard at making gifts last year and really beefed up the inventory. I also came across a post that showed a few more items than I could actually find on the blog last year. I knew I wasn’t crazy!



New Donation Blocks

9 donation blocks
9 donation blocks

While I began sewing FOTY 2019, I used some 2.5 inch squares as leaders and enders.

I realized as I was making them, that there is no rhyme or reason to the color scheme. I don’t have enough of one color to really do anything with the blocks.

The problem is also that making blocks when people can’t get a set at the meeting doesn’t help Peggy with Community Giving.

Looking at them now, I could make another 16 Patch Plus quilt top like I made for Peggy last weekend. I could use the black blocks for the outer legs of the Plus and a red one for the center block. The 16 Patch Plus tops turn out so small, though, and I really prefer making larger quilts.

FOTY 2019 Beginning of Sewing

Fabric of the Year 2019 - sewing start
Fabric of the Year 2019 – sewing start

I arranged the squares for Fabric of the Year 2019 to the point where I felt I could start to sew.

I started in the bottom left hand corner as I thought the dark part was mostly to my liking.

I wasn’t 100% happy with the center and the photo shows that I cleared out all of the Slate Grey squares in the center. I thought it might look better, but I am not sure I will keep it that way.

Candy Dish Started

Journey 2 Nebula icon
Journey 2 Nebula icon

Rock Candy is finished so I am on to Candy Dish. This will be for my youngest niece since the others have gotten their cushion covers.

Candy Dish Cutting
Candy Dish Cutting

Candy Dish** has two ‘patterns’ included in the little fold up pamphlet. In reality, it is one pattern with two color arrangements. I believe the goal for the Journey2Nebula project is to make both pillows, but I am only making one.

I pulled out my pink bins and started going through them to find the pinks that would create the vision of the pillow that was in my mind. I found I have a lot of peachy pinks, which I no longer enjoy. 🙁 I’ll have to figure out a use for them. Another lesson in using fabrics up sooner than years later. I seem to be getting a lot of these lessons recently.







**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.

Election Day Reminder

Down the Drain: Finished
Down the Drain: Finished

I made this quilt to represent the rights I thought were in danger in 2016. I think they are in even more danger. The worst part is that most of them reveal that lawmakers are thinking too much about sex when they consider women.

Go Vote and think about what YOU want your future to be like. Don’t consider what others are telling you. You are smart enough to decide for yourself.


Pop Parade Xes

Pop Parade by Metro for P&B Textiles
Pop Parade by Metro for P&B Textiles

I have been looking at the Pop Parade fabric by Metro for P&B for years, but specifically recently as I rummage through my dots yardage. This week, I saw a quilt on Instagram and it called to me.

I have had this fabric since 2008, so it is past time to use it. At the time, I wanted to just use this fabric, but I think, now, I will add some tone-on-tones or solids to the mix plus a background. These are all fat quarters so I won’t be able to make some of the blocks in the size I want, because I don’t have enough fabric.

The problem with this fabric hanging around for years is that I don’t like it as much as I once did. I don’t dislike it, but it doesn’t use the clear colors I am now excited about. This is an advertisement for using fabric you are excited about when you get it.

X Design
X Design

The design of which I am now enamored is an X design. I made a pillow some time ago for Maria that I think has a similar design: lozenges. The thing I like about this design is the variety of sizes. I also think this design will go really fast.

What I have to think about is whether I want to start on it now or finish FOTY 2019 first. I could do both at the same time using leaders & enders.

26 Projects 2020 #10

My fabric usage was small for October as I didn’t sew as much as I expected. Still I am up to 92 yards used, which is 7 yards more than I used at the end of last year. Of that 29% is for charity quilts.

Finished 2020 Quilt Projects

Four quilts are now complete for the year. I am thrilled.

Finished 2020 Small and Non-Quilt Projects

This category covers bags, toys, aprons and knitting as well as other non-quilt projects.

I feel like I have made more of these small items, but I can’t find any others.

Doing Good

In Process
The ‘In Process’ is used to denote projects on which I am actively working or are on the design wall waiting for me to stitch. I am continuing to try not to put away projects. I find putting a project away ensures I never work on them, because I just lose steam.

  • FOTY 2019 – this is now on the design wall and I am making slow progress

Small Projects to Make or in Process

Most of my progress involves thinking or just cutting.

  • One Hour Basket for organizing my decks of cards – Creative Strength, mindfulness, etc. I may switch to one of the Minikins or a Catch All Caddy projects for this purpose.
  • One Hour Basket for my stuff that tends to accumulate on the dining room table. I may switch to one of the Minikins projects or a Catch All Caddy for this purpose.
  • One Hour Basket for DH’s stuff that tends to accumulate on the dining room table. I may switch to one of the Minikins projects for this purpose.
  • Retreat Organizer – another project from the Crafty Gemini Organizer Club, also on my list, but not yet started
  • Ultimate Project Organizer – another project from the Crafty Gemini Organizer Club, also on my list, but not yet started
  • Officer gifts for January 2021 – have the pattern and the supplies. Need to start so these are ready and I am not scrambling at the last minute
  • Ultimate Carry All Bag – Bag-a-Long for BAM – I have the inside pockets made and am struggling with the front pocket.
  • Westchester shirt – this is a Crafty Gemini pattern. I bought the fabric at PIQF in 2018 and just need to make it. The pattern comes with a video, so there is hope it will be wearable.


I decided that some of my projects are in a different class because they are hand piecing or embroidery or beading. They take longer. Thus I created a new category and have moved some projects here.

Ready for Quilting

Nothing at the moment.

In the Quilting Process

In the Finishing Process

Nothing at the moment.

Still WIPs
I still have WIPs. Who doesn’t, after all? A project in the ‘UFO’ category means I am stalled. A nicer way of saying UFO is a WIP. The list is a lot shorter and the projects are newer, for the most part.

  1. Handbag Sampler – this is still the forgotten project. It should be on the UFO list. The blocks were teaching samples when I taught a sampler class some time before I started writing the quilt class sampler tutorials. I found one block recently, but otherwise I actually don’t know exactly where the blocks are hiding. I have an idea and still have to crawl up in the far reaches of my fabric closet to see if I can find them. I haven’t even found a picture of all the blocks. Sad.
  2. Lobster – I think I might make this into a tablerunner for the buffet. I think that will be a good and fun use of the piece even if the colors aren’t quite right for the dining room.
  3. Pies and Points from 2016 Victoria Findlay Wolfe class. The last time I worked on it was when Julie and I had a playdate in April 2018. I brought this piece with me so I could cut more elements (Julie has a Sizzix). I lost my excitement about this piece shortly thereafter and still have to get it back. Thus, I had to move this to the WIPs area.
  4. Pointillist Palette #4: Fourth is a series of 6 quilts; needs tiny square patches sewn together. No progress.
  5. Self Portrait: started in 2006 at a class at Quilting Adventures in Richmond, Virginia. I am still stalled on this again. As one of my oldest (I am pretty sure) UFO, I put it on my blog and out into the Twitterverse and Diane suggested that I not consider this as a self portrait. I think that strategy is a great idea. I am now trying to think of a new persona for her.
  6. Serendipity Lady – I am still planning to take this piece to be framed.
  7. Who Am I? – This piece is still languishing. Perhaps having a larger design wall will help me regain momentum. The amount of satin stitching I was facing was a problem until I thought of BIAS TAPE. I am going to make the words with bias tape, perhaps different widths, then I won’t have to sew the satin stitching. Red Scribbles and Friend Julie helped me come up with this solution. Now I just have to do it!

Various & Sundry 2020 #15

Fabric, Notions, Supplies, Books & Tools

Sweet Home Quilting has Sue Spargo wool!

Friends Sonja and Alison have Sew Perfect tables. I was finally interested enough to go and look at them when Sonja said hers could move up and down so she could sit or stand at the machine.

Jennifer Sampou’s Chalk and Charcoal Collection by Robert Kaufman is wonderful. They have warm and cool colors as well as a number of widebacks. I really like the light grey.

Projects, Classes, Patterns & Tutorials

Christina Cameli has online classes. I love the look of her Pathway Pillow project. The quilting is simple, but very effective.

I have been using the Spoonflower zipper installation, which installs a zipper in the top (or bottom) seam. The guild sent me to a page of Sotak Handmade’s site and she has some instructions for installing a zipper in the back of the pillow.

Sotak Handmade has a big list of tutorials, some of which would make great gifts (holidays are coming!). One that was used at a recent retreat I attended was a little flower pot. It can be used for schnibbles, as a quick gift, for paperclips or as storage for a myriad of other things.

After watching the video to make the Retreat Bag I mentioned a few weeks ago, I saw that the host linked to a cosmetic bag pattern. I liked the interesting shape of the bag. There is a video for that one as well. So Sew Easy has a whole bunch of different videos, mostly lingerie and a variety of different bags.

Other Artists

Tim recommended Lauren Mormino’s YouTube channel to me. She is a bagmaker and creates videos for making bags. I get the impression that the bags are made by her, but are not her patterns. Tim is sewing a Noel Bag and following Lauren’s video.  According to Tim, she talks about the most efficient ways to make the bag, provides some hacks and generally walks you through it. She, apparently, has two IG profiles, Sewing with Lauren and MoreMeKnow. I see a little duplication, but one seems to be more whole life while the other is bags. Her website is MoreMeKnow.com

Media, Exhibitions and Shows

Barbara Brackman showed some winners and related quilts from a 1927 quilt show in Seattle. You may view the show catalog on the Hathi Trust site.  You can download it from that site as well. It reminded me of the APNQ – Association of Pacific Northwest Quilters – show I used to attend in Seattle.

I went to listen to the interview I did recently with Jeff Rutherford. I am pretty proud of the way it came. I actually sound like I know what I am talking about. Then I went back and listened to the other episodes. It is interesting to hear how people answer the same questions. Also, I have never heard of these people! Am I just behind the times? One woman was Jessica Alexandrakis.


Blue Improv Donation Quilt

Blue Improv Donation Top finished
Blue Improv Donation Top finished

The Blue Improv quilt top that I thought I might turn into pillows for my SIL is back in the donation top pile.

I found a piece of fabric that I don’t have to piece for the backing. Less bulk will make the quilting easier.

The page with all of these Color Improv quilts has been updated as well. I was amazed to see that I have made 6 of these scrap improv donation tops!