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Monday, May 29, 2017

Time to Celebrate!

According to dictionary.com, Jol means a party or to have a good time. Well, it’s time to party cuz Jol is done!



And here is the back…



I’m so pleased with how this turned out. I love the colors and the quilting, and the binding, and everything about it. And, I had a good time making it!

I quilted snowflakes across (horizontally) the blocks on the long arm, then FMQ snowflakes in the piano key border on my domestic machine. You can see some of the quilting here…



I had originally found this fabric line at a local quilt shop last year (it is a Moda line), and really liked it. Then at one of the classes I took at the shop I won a charm pack of this fabric as a door prize. I picked up a jelly roll of the same fabric to complete the blocks, then used the left-over strips for the piano key border. I then used the remaining grey strips to make a strippy binding. It turned out just as I hoped! I am one happy quilter. This is a holiday quilt, so it won’t be out again until after Thanksgiving. But I will be anxiously awaiting its turn in the living room.

Finishing Jol was my One Monthly Goal for May, and I finished stitching the binding during the Indy 500 yesterday, so I finished it up in time. It is also on my list for the Second Quarter of the 2017 Finish-A-Long. Two birds with one stone!

This week I hope to finish the ditch stitching on the Gypsy Wife. When that is done I will start the quilting on it. That’s about it from here for today. Have a wonderful Memorial Day!

Linking up with:
One Monthly Goal Finishes at Elm Street Quilts
Monday Making at Love Laugh Quilt
Main Crush Monday at Cooking Up Quilts
2017Finish-A-Long 2Q Finishes at She Can Quilt (in June)

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Slow Sunday Stitching

Here is the progress I have made so far on the current block of the Snowman Collector project…



The tree is done and I'm still working on the hat. I plan to spend some more time on it today while watching the Indy 500 race. I’m not a huge racing fan, but I remember my mom always being so excited about the race and when we would head out to their place in the California desert on Memorial Day weekend, Mom would have a radio outside with the race on and the TV inside would have the race on. She never wanted to miss a thing. It’s just a nice little memory I have of my mom, so now I have the Indy 500 on in the background every year. I think it is just comforting somehow.

Before I sit down with the snowman however, I will finish up the binding on the Jol quilt…



I just have about 90 inches left to stitch down, and then it will be done.


Anyhoo…I will probably spend some time stitching today. I hope you can find some time today for something fun to do as well. And for those in the U.S., have a wonderful and safe Memorial Day holiday weekend. I will be linking up with Kathy for Slow Sunday Stitching. I hope you get the chance to visit her blog and check out all of the great hand stitched projects.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Mid-Week Check-In

I took the Jol quilt to Bee yesterday and was able to stitch the binding down on most of one side. There’s an awful lot of gabbing that goes on there, so I’m happy with the progress I made. I think I will just save Jol to be finished up at Bee. I will be at the next two, then miss a couple, so if I don’t get the binding finished by the June 6th Bee, I will just finish it up at home.

Yesterday I also completed the first lesson for the Spring FMQ QAL at The Inbox Jaunt.



We are working on the half square triangle strips first, and I have tried these little arcs before and didn’t have much luck. I did much better on this go-around, but there are still some wobbles that you can see. I need work on consistency in the size of the arcs as well.

I spent a little more time yesterday doing some ditch stitching on the Gypsy Wife quilt…



Right now I am stitching between these vertical background strips (all 63 of them!) I have completed part of the bottom right quadrant of the quilt, but it is very slow going. This is going to take a while, but I know it will be worth it in the end. I’ll just keep plugging away at it until “every stinking seam” is ditch stitched. Then I will start with the fun decorative quilting.

This afternoon I will probably add a little embroidery to the mix and do some more work on the Snowman Collector block, but I will show my progress on that project this weekend.

That’s about it from here. There is a possibility of some nasty storms here today, so I will just hunker down and sew. Seems like a good plan!


I will be linking up over at Sew Fresh Quilts for Let’s Bee Social #178. Head on over to see what everyone else is up to.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Moving on Monday

I have plenty to do this week, so I need to get moving on it.

First, I finished quilting the Jol quilt and I attached the binding. Here is the quilting from the front…



And here is the quilting from the back…



I just did large snowflakes across the width (horizontally) inside the blocks on the long arm. Then I took it off the long arm and did some “in the ditch” quilting and then some free motion snowflakes in the borders. The binding is from leftover grey strips from the quilt top. This is bagged up and ready to go to our guild bee tomorrow so I can start hand stitching down the binding. This is getting close to a finish!

I was also lucky enough to get a gift certificate for Mother’s Day (from my m-i-l) to a local quilt shop, so I headed over there last Thursday. I found lots of fun things (of course!) but I really loved this Merrily kit by Gingiber with Moda fabric…



Here is a close up of the blocks…



It's not lost on me that these are similar colors to the Jol quilt for a holiday quilt. I guess the traditional red and green are taking a step back at the moment for Christmas (though Merrily does have some toned-down greens).

There are some great panels in this fabric line with deer, moose, penguins and polar bears. I will probably head back to the store to pick up some of the larger panels to make some pillows to have out with this quilt.

The kit came in this great little box…I can be a sucker for cutesy packaging



And it has everything I need (except batting and backing)…


And since I had the gift certificate, this (and a spool of thread) cost me less than $20!

I think this might go together pretty quickly and I am looking forward to getting to it. I might start this week or next on it.

The only other things I plan on working on this week are getting the neutral Gypsy Wife ready to quilt – and hopefully start quilting it – and starting on the spring FMQ QAL at The Inbox Jaunt. I used scraps from Jol to make my project, and it’s all ready to go.

That’s about it from here. I think I will be able to spend quite a bit of time in the sewing room this week, so I’m hoping to have a lot to show for it by Friday!

I hope you all have a safe and wonderful week ahead!

Linking up with:
Monday Making @ Love Laugh Quilt
Main Crush Monday @ Cooking Up Quilts


Monday, May 15, 2017

Heading into the Ditch

Today I plan on doing some “stitch in the ditch” walking foot quilting. I will start with the little table runner I put together to use for the FMQ QAL at The Inbox Jaunt.



That starts tomorrow, so my plan is to get all of the ditch stitching done today for it and I will be ready to go. The fabric in this project is all leftover strips from the Jol quilt…



I was able to get the quilting done I wanted to do on the long arm machine on Jol. I quilted large snowflakes in the blocks and at the block intersections…



The more I work on this quilt, the more I love it. I’m getting excited to finish it up. I will do the border quilting on my sewing machine, so this week I will probably just be quilting Jol and the QAL table runner. Sounds like fun!

Today I have some bread rising, I have cleaned the living room carpet, I watered the garden, and I have started some laundry. I think that is all I have to do today, so I plan on spending a bit of time in the sewing room. I hope you all have a wonderful Monday and a great week ahead.

Linking up with:
Monday Making at Love Laugh Quilt

Main Crush Monday at Cooking Up Quilts

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Seeing Green



This was my green view this past week. We were able to get a couple of nights camping in, and with all of the rain we have had this spring, the woods are so green and lovely. It was nice to get away for a bit.

When I got home, I was able to spend a little time cutting out the third green Kittens block for the May Rainbow Scrap Challenge…



It doesn’t look like much there. I was tempted to just leave it for a while, but this morning I had a little time and decided to go ahead and put it together. Ta-da!



I really like him! And I love his pink nose. Now all three of my green Kittens are done for May. Here are the other two…




I’m really pleased with how they have turned out. I will be waiting impatiently for June’s color!

For today, I will be linking up at So Scrappy for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge. Head over for some wonderful green projects – and have a wonderful weekend and a Happy Mother’s Day!


Sunday, May 7, 2017

Slow Sunday Stitching

I sat down and finished up the tree block I was working on for the Snowman Collector project…



After that, I selected this next block to work on…



I have everything traced already, so I got this block colored and pressed it. Now it is ready to stitch…



This one will take a little while to complete, but I’m hoping to have it done by the end of May.

Linking up:
Slow Sunday Stitching at Kathy’s Quilts




Saturday, May 6, 2017

Little Green Kittens

I’m pretty excited that the color for May for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge is green. I have lots of green fabric in my stash, so I have plenty to choose from, and I found some great fabrics to use for my Kittens blocks.

Yesterday I pieced two Kittens. I really like these curvy stripes on this cat…



And I’m pleased I had this swirly light green fabric to use for cat fur…



That’s about all I accomplished in the sewing room yesterday. I have one more green fabric that I want to use for another Kittens block…



I love the spots on this one along with the color, though I don’t think the color shows up really well on the computer. I plan to piece another Kittens block later this month with this fabric.

I will be linking up with Angela at So Scrappy for the May Rainbow Scrap Challenge. Head over for some fun and colorful projects.


Friday, May 5, 2017

Friday Progress

There is not much in the way of finishes around here, but there has been a little progress.

I was able to put together the four rows of HST squares for the new Quilt-a-Long over at The Inbox Jaunt with Lori Kennedy.



These are from leftover strips from the Jol quilt.

I also loaded the batting and the Jol quilt top onto the long arm frame…



That solid red over on the right is for practice and to check my tension. I think I know how I am going to quilt this. Now I need to get in there and do it. I probably won’t start until sometime this weekend.

That’s about it. Today I hope to put together some Kittens blocks for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge, then head upstairs to do some crochet. I will fill in the rest of the time with chores around the house.

I hope you all have a wonderful Friday and a great weekend. Happy Cinco de Mayo!


Linking up with Sarah at Confessions of a Fabric Addict for Can I Get a Whoop! Whoop!

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Rabbit Trails…

I’m really good at taking rabbit trails, and Lori Kennedy at The Inbox Jaunt is a wonderful enabler! I truly love her blog and I have one of her Craftsy classes which is a lot of fun. Lori has graciously offered several FMQ tutorials on her blog, but I have always been involved in other projects and have just not taken the time to follow along. Yesterday she posted about a new Quilt-a-Long she is hosting and I decided to participate. For this Quilt-a-Long, she is using a pieced top rather than a whole cloth/solid piece to practice FMQ. I have lots of 2-1/2 inch strips leftover from the Jol quilt top, so I thought they would be perfect to make the half-square triangles (HST) needed for Lori’s QAL. This morning Lori posted information about cutting the HST, but I jumped ahead yesterday and went ahead and cut mine out…



To make HST squares I usually sew two squares together, mark a line in the center diagonally, then stitch up either side of the line, cut on the marked line, and ta-da!…two HST squares. Since I’m using 2-1/2 inch strips, and the finished unit will be 2 inches, I couldn’t use that method, so I went to my other favorite way to make HST…the Easy Angle Ruler…



Our task for this week for the QAL is to get our HST squares pieced. I plan on getting those done today and sewn into strips of ten. Then I will wait until next week to get the sashing pieces together. Once this is completed it should be about the size of a table runner.

Speaking of Jol…I loaded the backing onto the long arm frame. This is the fabric I am using for the back…



I got the batting for this quilt and the Gypsy Wife yesterday, so I will go ahead and get the batting and the top loaded on the long arm and maybe I will get started on that today.

On Monday I also started the Snowman Collector embroidery and selected some “anchoring” colors that I will use throughout the project.



There are a lot of things going on in the blocks of this project, and they will require lots of colors, but I wanted to use the same colors throughout for trees, etc., to keep some continuity (and not have to search for the “right” color at a later time.) I spent a little time Monday and started on this tree block…



I hope to take some time this afternoon and possibly finish up with the green.

Yesterday I also selected some green fabrics for possibilities for the Kittens blocks for May for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge



I have one more fabric I am considering…



It doesn’t look too green in the photo, but it is a light green with the black swirly design. I really like this fabric and think it will make a good kitten block. Maybe I can get one made by the weekend.

That’s it from here for today. It is a beautiful day here in East TN, but rain is moving in tomorrow and then some colder weather for the weekend. Sounds like a great time for some indoor plans!


For today I will be linking up at Esther’s Blog for WOW: WIPs on Wednesday and at Sew Fresh Quilts for Let’s Bee Social. I hope you stop by and check out all of the wonderful projects everyone is working on…and have a wonderful Wednesday!

Monday, May 1, 2017

The Merry Month of May

We are in a fresh new month and I have plenty I want to accomplish, but first…let’s see what I accomplished in April.

My last finish of April was yesterday afternoon, when I put the final stitches in the Autumn’s Call embroidery…



I really like this pattern and I’m glad I have it done. I think I can probably get around to finishing this into a wall hanging by the fall.

A few small projects I completed were a crochet scarf to finish up a skein of yarn…



Some Kittens blocks for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge…





(I'm not at all happy with the middle cat, but I'll hang on to him for now.)

And 36 blocks for Quilts of Valor…



My big finishes were completing a snowflake table topper for donation to the Small Quilts Sale at our guild quilt show next month…



I completed the Orange and (Black &) White quilt…



And this past week I added the borders and completed the top for the Jol quilt…



I’m so excited to have this one ready to quilt! This was my UFO for April as well, so I made progress on it!

So, on to May…

I did not participate in the One Monthly Goal at Elm Street Quilts last month, but I’m going to jump back in for May by setting the goal of completing the quilting and binding on Jol.  I will get the backing pieced today and load it on the long arm, then when I get the batting in a couple of days I can get the rest loaded and get started. It would be nice to have it quilted by the weekend.

I also plan to start quilting the Gypsy Wife quilt this month.



I don’t know that I will get it done, but I hope to make a lot of progress. I should be able to get it basted one day this week, then I will start quilting on my domestic machine.

I will also play along with the UFO’s over at Patchwork Times. Judy selected #11 for May, which on my list is the Folk Art Cats quilt…



I got this pattern as a birthday gift a few years ago and I had fun when I started it, then it kind of faded away. I just looked through the project box and realized that I am working on the sixth (of twelve) blocks, so I will see if I can get more completed this month. Even though I have only completed one of the UFOs from my list this year (The Vintage Kitchen), I have found that pulling them out has been fun and I have continued to work on them after “their month.” We will see how far I get with the Cats in May.

Since I finished Autumn’s Call, I can finally get started on the Snowman Collector. My first block to work on is this little tree…



I decided to start small. This is about 7x4 inches, so I should be able to get it done pretty quickly. Then I can color and prepare for another block. I am looking forward to this project too.

I have decided to also start on a new quilting project this month. I have had the Purrfectly Pieced Quilt Kit for quite a while. Here it is from its project box…



Still in the wrapping and everything, including the backing, thread, and embellishments. So, I think I will get started on this one. My plan is to do all fusible applique, so maybe it won’t take forever. This should be fun.

That’s about it. I will continue to work on the 365 Challenge and Quilty365, though I have not made much progress on those lately. I also plan on making some more Kittens blocks for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge, but I need to wait to see what color is selected for May. I’m also working on this crochet pattern for a gift…



So far, this is going easily and I hope to finish up the brown circles in the next couple of weeks. I’m sure other things will come up and I will add to my list too!

In the meantime, I will be linking up at the following and I hope you have a wonderful May!

Monday Making at Love Laugh Quilt
MainCrush Monday at Cooking Up Quilts 
One Monthly Goal at Elm Street Quilts
UFOs at Patchwork Times
Slow Sunday Stitching at Kathy's Quilts