FOTY 2018 Finished Top

FOTY 2018 Finished Top
FOTY 2018 Finished Top

Work is closed for summer break this week. As a result, I worked like a demon all week and was able to finish the FOTY 2018 top and back. I didn’t need to finish it. Since I was taking quilts to Colleen today, I decided taking four quilts is better than taking three.

The quilt wasn’t difficult to piece since all the squares are 2.5 inches. The difficult part was keeping the pieces in order as I sewed. After I got pairs sewed together, I started using the opposite side of the quilt as leaders/enders and that made the process go faster.  I also had a lot of time Wednesday to sew.

This isn’t exactly the way I imagined it to come out. I kind of wanted it to be more like Ellsworth Kelly’s piece. I think to achieve that, I needed more black.

Add the black has kind of reinvigorated my interest in this series. I might continue after FOTY 2019. Stay tuned.

Spectrum of Colors

Spectrum of Colors Arranged by Chance is a 1951-53 painting (oil on wood) by Ellsworth Kelly. I saw it at the SFMoMA when Julie, DH and I visited a few years ago. I have been wanting to use the idea in a quilt for awhile.

FOTY 2018 Begins
FOTY 2018 Begins

Last week, I started on FOTY 2018, which will be my piece inspired by Kelly’s work.

I have to say that putting the pieces on the wall has been a joy. I feel much closer to it with my new design wall. I also really like the white interspersed with the color. It is making me think of doing one with white squares as well as the slate grey I have planned for 2019.

I am also apprehensive about adding the black. We will see, though.

I am also really excited that I am working on a true UFO!!

Spectrum of Colors

Spectrum of Colors Arranged by Chance is a 1951-53 painting (oil on wood) by Ellsworth Kelly. I saw it at the SFMoMA when Julie, DH and I visited a few years ago. I have been wanting to use the idea in a quilt for awhile. Last week, I started on FOTY 2018, which will be my piece inspired by Kelly’s work.

Plaid Blocks

Plaid Donation Blocks
Plaid Donation Blocks

I finished all the blocks for the plaid donation top. I rummaged through some older fabric and found a large-ish piece of plaid I will use for most of the back. The leftovers, of which there are still a few, will make up the rest of the back. I think this will make a great boy quilt.

In the course of my rummaging, I found some baseball fabric remnants and will use them for another donation quilt. Stay tuned for that one.

Plaid Determination

I am determined to use up the plaid. I used a good deal of it for the Plaid Block Party quilt for my cousin, but I still have some. Thus, I am making another donation top with the rest.

Plaid Remnants
Plaid Remnants

I am using the same Block Party pattern. I am using that pattern because it is easy and I had a number of leftover pieces that I wanted to use. I haven’t had much time to sew during the week, so I only have parts made. I am using these blocks as leaders and enders while I work on the Inside Outside Pouch.

New Modern Quilter’s Box

Modern Quilter's Box - May 2020
Modern Quilter’s Box – May 2020

As I mentioned when I received my first subscription box, Modern Handmade is one of my favorite shops. Because of shipping delays, I received another box a few days ago. I really wanted it to come and couldn’t really wait. I don’t know how I will wait until the end of June.

I am much more enthusiastic about this box than the first one. As soon as I opened it, I saw the coneflower fabric and was excited. I loved the previous version of that fabric, especially in flannel for receiving blankets. The fabrics are from Anna Maria Horner’s Conservatory and Hindsight collections. The colors are mostly, not colors I would choose, but I like them. I especially like the combination and may need to add some solids or tone on tones to use them together.

Contents of May 2020 Modern Quilter's Box
Contents of May 2020 Modern Quilter’s Box

2 3/4 yards of fabric must be added to my spreadsheet, but I like this fabric and am already trying to think of a use for it that I will enjoy. Perhaps I will center one of the coneflowers on a Cotton Candy pouch? It is a good pattern for showcasing large motifs. I need another pouch like I need a hole in my head, but at the moment I can’t think of another project that would showcase the fabric.

I usually drink hot cocoa in the afternoon (I would be an awful Englishwoman!) when I want a hot drink. I will have to switch to tea to use up some of the teas I have been receiving in these boxes.

Patterns from May 2020 Modern Quilter's Box
Patterns from May 2020 Modern Quilter’s Box

The quilt patterns are good for using up large prints, but they are not very interesting. I’ll have to look at them more closely and see if making a quick quilt with some of the fabrics would be satisfying. I don’t want to use up the fabric just to use it. Some of it I really like and would like to be able to see it  in my house.

The Market Bag is interesting. I have one in my Minikins patterns, but it might be worthwhile to try it for one of the raffle baskets. It takes a 1 1/2 yards, so it would offset some of the acquisitions I have been making lately.

It is fun to receive a box like this even if I don’t need the items in it.

Modern Quilter’s Box

Modern Handmade is one of my favorite shops. It is relatively local, too. When this whole pandemic, shelter-in-place started, I wasn’t buying a lot, because it was so stressful to try and buy food. Also, I wanted to save money in case I get laid off.

Modern Quilter's Box
Modern Quilter’s Box

Once I got over myself, there were a few things I wanted or needed so I worked at buying things from small/local companies. I decided that it was important to me to help quilt shops stay in business. I can’t support all of them, but I can do a bit. Thus, I subscribed to the Modern Quilter’s Box from Modern Handmade.

I have been leery of these boxes. First, they may have stuff I already have. Second, they automatically add fabric to my Fabric Usage Report every month, which means I have to sew at least 2.5 yards extra every month to make up for this incoming fabric. Third, what if what I get is icky or I don’t like it? Still, I wanted to support this shop and for a limited time, this is a good way to do it. Friend Julie also subscribed, so we can talk about the boxes that come. She wrote a nice, positive post about receiving hers. Also, it is kind of a fun surprise to get something new and exciting that I might not have seen before.

Modern Quilter's Box -opened
Modern Quilter’s Box -opened

The box came late since distribution was limited during the first part of the S-i-P. This means I’ll get two in May!

Since this is my first one, I don’t know if this is how they will come or if I will get the same sorts of things. The second photo, left, is what the contents looked like when I opened it. The card on top tells about all the things inside the box and gives a brief overview of the designer of the pattern, Nancy Scott from Masterpiece Quilting.

Modern Quilter's Box -opened and arranged
Modern Quilter’s Box -opened and arranged

The card also talks about the notion, Purple Thang, and has a brief mention of the tea and snack, a Stroopwafel, which also came in the box.

They sent out a survey after I received the box and I told them to forget the snack. It looks yummy, but it isn’t gluten-free so I can’t eat it. Give me more fabric or quilt related stuff not snacks.

Modern Quilter's Box, April -everything laid out
Modern Quilter’s Box, April -everything laid out

In general I can use almost everything in the box. The pattern is sort of interesting with the added Flying Geese element. I probably won’t make it, though, so I’ll give it away. Some of the fabrics aren’t those I would buy, but I do like Art Gallery fabrics, so I am sure I can use them. I have them out so I see them as I move around my workroom. I am thinking about what to make with them. I like that pink the best so far. Are you surprised?

I think I will put the Purple Thang (sincerely dislike that name!) into my Go Bag. I tried it out when I made my most recent face mask. It worked pretty well for poking out corners and flattening the inside of seams. Apparently, while I have one, I haven’t used it before. Or I haven’t used it recently.

I bought a 6 month subscription. If you try it out, I am curious to know what you think.

 

Need Fabric

Peek-a-Boo fabric by Amy Bradley Designs, Pattern #13012
Peek-a-Boo fabric by Amy Bradley Designs, Pattern #13012

I am working on the Frolic! quilt, as you have seen and, of course, I have run out of fabric. This blue dotted fabric is an older fabric called Peek-a-Boo by Amy Bradley Designs for Moda Pattern #13012. I always try to think of running out of fabric as a design challenge. Thus, I have a relatively suitable substitute waiting in the wings, but would really prefer just a little more of this fabric. If you have any you are willing to sell or trade, please get in touch. I  would really appreciate your help. Thanks!

BAM Largesse

A week or so ago, we celebrated Winter at my guild. There was a short Sew Day where I worked on Frolic! Clue 2, then a potluck lunch and a swap and socializing.

In between all of this fun and excitement was fabric. We hold our Sew Days in a church hall. On the side of this room are 4-5 old pews. The room used to be the church sanctuary. Normally, we store our bags and other Sew Day paraphernalia there to keep it off the floor and reduce tripping hazards.

On the Winter Party/Sew Day at least 3 of the pews were filled with fabric. The guild had been given a  donation of fabric by a longarmer who was closing her business. She donation only about a quarter of her stash to the guild. People at the party were allowed to look through the fabric and take what they wanted. I stayed away, having plenty of fabric of my own. Plenty of the members took a few pieces or filled up grocery bags with their selections. The rest will be used for our community quilt project.

This was kind of startling in a number of different ways. Will my unused fabric end up like that? Why get rid of all of her fabric? Doesn’t she want to sew anymore or did she keep her favorite pieces? I know I will probably never know the answers to these questions. I will have to think about what I am going to do with my fabric and make sure my DH knows so it doesn’t all go to Goodwill. What happens to your fabric and supplies when you go to your next adventure?

Scrap User System

One of the things that was in the first Frolic! clue was a mention of Bonnie Hunter’s Scrap User System. I had forgotten about her system, but was reminded when I clicked on the link and started reading the article.

2019 Cutting Chart
2019 Cutting Chart

I don’t do exactly what Bonnie does, but I do a version of it. As I have mentioned, I cut certain pieces out of every piece of fabric I use or buy for future projects. As I mentioned the other day, this sometimes comes in handy when I work on a project that needs certain unit sizes that I have cut. This is the point of Bonnie’s system.

My cutting varies from year to year depending on what projects I have going, as I have said. I like the idea of cutting up all of my scraps into usable pieces, but it just isn’t practical for me. I like the compromise I have made. It breaks up my cutting, as I have also said. I have the pieces I need for my next projects ready to go when I am ready to sew. I have something (cutting up pieces of fabric) I can do when I have a few minutes free.

I also like having random shapes and sizes of fabric in my scrap drawers. I would be able to make interesting journal covers or the improv donation quilts without them.

I think the key is to think about different systems and make them work for you.

SoCal Fabrics

I headed down to Southern California with DH on Friday. It is the first time I have been on a trip in awhile. It was strange. We drove down to San Gabriel. As the new chairman of the Native Sons Charitable Foundation, he had to give a big check to one of the hospitals that treats craniofacial anomalies.

I bought some new fabrics.

Cat's Quilting Studio and Joann supplies
Cat’s Quilting Studio and Joann supplies

First, my friend took me to Cat’s Quilting Corner. Check back for a post about that shop. If you are in Southern California, it is definitely worth a visit.

All the fabrics in the photo, left, are from Cat’s Quilting Corner. there were many more that I wanted, but I have to be mindful of my usage and I couldn’t think of a use for some of them. The magazine (with EPP templates), the double fold elastic and the lobster clips all came from Joann. I know! I know!, but they did have a very nice selection.

I bought the double fold elastic because of the colors. I couldn’t resist the dots. They had red with white dots as well, but I didn’t like the baby blue that went with the red. I think I might use it with the Ultimate Carry All bag. We’ll see.

Birch Fabrics
Birch Fabrics

On Sunday night, we stayed overnight in Paso Robles. We planned to do a bit of wine tasting, but visited Solvang instead, so we got to our hotel late. On Monday morning, we stopped at Birch Fabrics/FabricWorm as we left town. That shop has such a nice space. I wrote a review of it some years ago. They were super busy getting ready for PIQF, Houston and some other shows. The woman helping me also said they had 80 online orders waiting to be cut! Birch has a nice selection of fabrics. I was able to see some of the Ruby Star Society fabrics. The stripes shown are from their newest collection.

We had a nice trip and it was fun to see a new quilt shop and visit one I had visited before.

FOTY 2019 – More Squares

FOTY 2019 - early September
FOTY 2019 – early September

I have been working on cutting up the fabric on my ironing board. It was getting pretty fat and hard to use as an actual ironing board for piecing. As a result, I got a full design wall of squares.

There is a lot of orange because I have been working on the Orange Improv donation top, but other new fabrics as well.

The Problem with Grey

Bolts of Grey
Bolts of Grey

I went to The Granary the other day and Friend Julie pointed out a row of greys. She called it the “problem with greys.” I thought the photo explained the ‘problem’ beautifully.

The colors in the photo look different from when I saw them with my eyes, but it doesn’t matter, because you, dear Reader, can still see the difference.

None of the colors would be called anything but grey. The bolt on the far right looks black but was a charcoal (you’ll have to trust me). The shelf sports a wide variety.

Background detail - Flying Around
Background detail – Flying Around

I like using a variety of greys as background on my quilts and it is a happy chore to find the right ones. You can see the variety in Flying Around. Mostly I like to use greys that are very close in tone to each other so there is no grey that obviously stands out. Also, I don’t like the taupe based greys. I am sure I have said that before.

In the photo of the Flying Around background, I have more variety. It might be because I want the eye to move around the background as well as the foreground or it might be laziness. Not sure or not admitting to anything. 😉

This is an example of why my rule of ‘make visual decisions visually’ is so important. It is impossible to match any color, perhaps particularly greys, without putting the bolts or pieces next to each other.

Pillowcase-palooza

Nine Pillowcases - August 2019
Nine Pillowcases – August 2019

I went on a binge of pillowcase making over the weekend. I had several pieces of fabric I had purchased for pillowcases. Somehow they had never risen high enough on the list, but this past weekend was the time.

I needed some quick finishes. I have been working hard on Flying Around, but it slow going and I just needed to finish something. I know I finished the Jelly Roll Rug recently, but that didn’t really feel like a finish somehow.

The YM gets a new pair (tacos). His new roommates each get one (taco, Mexican food cuff). A niece and nephew each get a pair and I will keep the turquoise dotted one for myself. I love that chocolate fabric.