Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Easy Street.

This mystery is certainly living up to its name.  No cutting of 3000 triangles (well a small exaggeration there!), no making of string pieced blocks that take days to piece.
No, this year is living up to Bonnie's promise - an easier mystery quilt.

Sixty Four more flying geese (then stitched together with 64 geese from Step 2), and 145 3 1/2" squares and I'm done for the week!  What a great feeling.
Bonnie has a Linky Party on her Blog to see what everyone else has been up to.  The last 3 weeks have had over 200 people linking up.  Please hop over to take a look.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Step 3 Easy Street.

It's amazing how much sewing I can get done when it's hot weather outside.
I was lagging behind a little with each step of Easy Street.  I managed to sew most of the units, but never quite finished each step.
Today I started and finished Step 3.

64 lovely little blocks.

The first 3 steps, all completed.
Now I can sit back and relax for a whole 24 hours until the next step comes out!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Lucky me.

A little while ago, I was lucky enough to win a wonderful Give-away from Jo of  Jo's Country Junction.  A lovely book ,"Back To Charm School" by Mary Etherington and Connie Tesene of Country Threads quilt shop.

What a lovely surprise to receive in the post.  I can't wait to try out several of the patterns in the book.
Please have a look at Country Threads website, they have some great patterns and kits, and their front page is very cute.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

It's a start.

Here's my start for Step 2 of Bonnie K Hunter's Easy Street mystery.

Flying geese are everywhere on my sewing table in many stages of their construction.  These are the lucky finished ones.
I'm using red in place of Bonnie's purple, and I have shirtings for my background instead of black on white fabric.
Some of these fabrics have been in my cupboard for a very long time.  Glad they finally get to see the light of day.
I find I'm looking more and more at the scraps and remembering which quilt they were originally bought for.
Please take a look at the Linky that Bonnie has  put up for this weeks clues.  It's great fun to see how everyone is going all over the world.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

On a roll...

Block 14 is done and finished.
A nice easy block this week.

Now back to Quiltville's Easy Street mystery.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Block 13.

Still up to date on these Grandmother's Choice blocks!  The next block is due out in a couple of hours- just made it.  LOL.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Easy Street.

Once again, Bonnie K. Hunter is hosting her annual mystery quilt-a-long.
I look forward to this event every year.  The patterns and colours are so different year to year, the quilts are amazing.
The first clue came out last Friday, but it has taken me until last night to actually decide on colours.  Bonnie has used Grey as her constant, Aqua, Purple, and Green her main colours, and Black on White prints as her background. 
Recently I went through my fabric cupboard and donated a heap of fabric that I thought I would never use.  Unfortunately, this included anything with grey, aqua or bright purples and greens.
I've mulled over many combinations, finally settling on yellow for my constant, Red, blue and green colours and shirtings for my backgrounds.  All from my 18th century repro cupboard.
I did consider cheddar as my constant for a while, but yellow won the day.
So, finally, here are the first 22 blocks of step 1.  Only another 170 to make!

Bonnie has a Linky happening over at her blog , at last look there were over 200 people linked up with their blog posts showing their progress.  Please drop by and have a look.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Grandmother's choice.

I'm still chugging along with my Grandmother's Choice blocks.
Block 12-Little Boy's Breeches.  The colours are better in real life, but it's still a fairly light coloured block.

Block 11- Schoolhouse Block.  This is the second time I've ever pieced a schoolhouse block.  I don't know what it is, but I always have lots of trouble with the measurements.  No problems with the set-in seams, the block just doesn't like me!  I'm glad it's finished.

I had intended on sewing these on Saturday night, but somehow the conversations got in the way! 

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Midday to midnight sewing.

Yesterday was an extravaganza of sewing activity for me.
Karen from Somerset Patchwork has had several 12 hour sewing marathons, I decided I needed to try one.  So from midday until midnight yesterday, sew I did.  Twelve hours seems like such a long time, but went very quickly once you get sewing.  Fifteen other ladies and myself sewed up a storm.
I had kitted up 12 blocks from a sew-along with Pam Buda, and took several other projects with me.  It wouldn't do to run out of something to sew!  (I think I had enough for a 2 week retreat stay!)

 I did think these blocks wouldn't take that long, but time went very quickly.  I left the sewing of all the blocks together for today, that part did go quickly.  As you can see, I've used 2 different pink setting fabrics.  Miscalculation on the amount of pink needed, luckily I had another on the shelf.

This centre from Summer School last January is coming along.  I worked on sewing the corners into place.  Would love to have this quilt finished for this coming January's classes.  Once the corners are in place, the large borders will go together very quickly.  I'm now trying to decide how to quilt it.  Handquilting is definately off the list- too many seams.  Perhaps Baptist Fans or Clamshells on my machine, it's not a big quilt.  Any ideas?

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Whilst I was taking photos of my quilt the other day, I took the opportunity to photograph some others that are also too big to hang inside.

This quilt started life as a mystery quilt way back in 1999.  I did finish the top soon after the class ended.  Not bad for me.  LOL.  However there it sat for a long time.  Finally, a very good friend of mine convinced me to quilt it and be done. So, over even more time, it was slowly machine quilted by me on my domestic machine.  Whoever thought that quilting on the diagonal on a king sized quilt would work needs shooting- Guess that would be me!  Oh, not forgetting that I had embellished the pomegranates in the middle with beading before quilting.  That certainly led to some interesting moments.
However, it was finished and I'll be eternally grateful to Megan for giving me the push I needed.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

I'm feeling a little strange today- I completely finished a quilt.  Not just the top, but the whole thing!
Feeling pretty good actually. This quilt was started in about 2008, machine quilted in 2010 ( I still have the paperwork!) and finished 2012.
 Photos were taken and the quilt is on my bed.

Turns out when the quilt is large enough to hang over the edges of my king-sized bed, there is a definite lack of places to hang it for a photo!
Clever DH to the rescue, so out we go to the vegetable patch where there is the remnant of a trellis.  I've edited out the woodworking clamps he used to hold the quilt in place.
Hmmm, I've just realised there is another  quilt on my ladder that just needs the binding on to be finished.  Begun about 1989, handquilted by my mum sometime in the next 5 or 6 years, and still waiting for the binding.  I think it should be next.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012


I haven't sewn on a lot of bindings.  I have to admit that I love to sew quilt tops, but that's where it ends.  I sometimes have my tops machine quilted, but more often than not  the tops go on my quilt ladder and I move on to the next quilt.
So, I bit the bullet last week and chose some binding fabric for a quilt that I finished around 2009.
It was machine quilted in 2010, and since then has been draped over the ladder looking gorgeous!

I'm on the home stretch with three quarters sewn.
I must say that this is the first time I've used clips to hold the binding instead of pins.  I'm converted.  No pin pricks, no pins to fall out.  The clips hold well and the edge is nice and soft to hold.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Grandmother's Choice.

Still up to date with my Grandmothers Choice blocks.
Block 9- Brick Pavement.

Block 10- New York.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

A good day off...

I spent yesterday finishing off a small quilt project from some months ago.
My little quilt has been languishing in the corner , complete with borders cut, just waiting to be finished.
So TADA, here it is.

Oh, that red binding isn't for the little blue quilt, I also cut and ironed 400" of  binding for a large bed-sized quilt that has been waiting.
Feels good to get some finishes happening.

Friday, November 2, 2012


I have been following along with Jo's year long quiltalong at Jo's Country Junction,  I nearly forgot to post my October little quilt.  What happened to October?  Suddenly we're into November.  My goodness.
So, better late than never, here it is.

Have a look over at Jo's, she's hosting a linky of other's October quilts.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Mountain Trail Quiltalong.

Getting a little closer to the finishing line with this sweet little quilt.
I've bitten the bullet and decided to handquilt it!
I've already spent several hours and might be about 1/8th finished! LOL.  This is why I don't handquilt very much.  I love the look.  I love the sewing, but Oh the time it takes.

Why was it that I forgot that pin basteing doesn't work for a quilting hoop??
An hour or so later, most of the pins removed and thread basteing in place.

My stitches are fairly uneven, but It's not too bad, and I'm really pleased about the prospect of having my very own handquilted quilt.
Thanks so much to  Lori of Humble Quilts for having this Quiltalong, I've really enjoyed stitching along with everyone.
Take a look at Lori's Blog and check out the others linked there.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Tiny little hexagons.

The Robin's Nest quilt is also still coming along.  I need to make 56 (yikes!) little flowers out of 1/2" hexagons for the next border.

 I've kitted up several hexie flowers as a take along project for any waiting times.  I seem to get most of these stitched during my tea break at work.  Excellent use of time I think!
Great use of a little sandwich lunchbox.

Saturday, October 27, 2012


Netherfield is growing little by little.  This is such a pleasure to work on.  The instructions by Katrina Hadjimichael are very well written and easy to follow.
My centre square is on point and I've appliqued the stars to the background triangles.

 I'm not sure about the blue border that follows, but I think it will be OK.

The next border was of 60 degree triangles.  I needed to buy a ruler for those.  I've never used 60 degree triangles before.  Very easy to cut and sew.

I'm achieving a lot of machine sewing at the moment.  Bonnie Hunter has been having several Quilt cam sessions this last 10 days or so.  I really love listening to her talk about her quilting travels, and what she's working on at the moment.  Whilst Bonnie is talking I get a lot of machine sewing done.
Next big thing for me is her Mystery Quilt that will start in November.  We get fabric requirements on 31st of October.  Can't wait.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

The Quilt that very nearly wasn't!

I've been following Lori at Humble Quilts for quite some time.  Recently, she had a quilt-along to reproduce a full size antique quilt in miniature.  A lovely little doll sized version.
I collected the weekly parts and thought "one day".
Well, last week was that one day.  I set out to buy some nice plain red, I seem to have very little in the way of solids in my stash.  Must change that.
I spent a couple of hours choosing and cutting fabrics ready for a sewing spree.

All those lovely little 1 1/2" squares, and tiny little rectangles.  At this point, I realised that I'd misread the instructions, and didn't need the red rectangles!   I very nearly just threw the lot into the bin.   Oh dear, a good cup of tea and a fair bit of time feeling very stupid. 
Anyway, onwards with the little squares.  So cute sewn into little 9-patches.

 The pieces came together beautifully, I was really liking the way this little quilt was coming together.

When I went to cut the borders, I had to purchase additional red fabric.  Not enough left from all the miscutting!  I managed to get another piece of red that was a  very close match to the little squares.  Of course the shop had sold out of "my" red.
Finally, borders on and awaiting layering and basteing.  A very sweet 22" x 22 1/2".

So cute.  Well worth the effort of finishing this little beauty.  To think it very nearly wasn't!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Thanks Linda, next border is done!!!

Just the helpful prod I needed to get border 7 finished.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

The next instalment in the Grandmother's Choice  Block of the Week has been put up.

Aunt Eliza's Star.

This week's block is dedicated to the battle our foremothers had over child custody.  Sadly, if the woman left the marriage, she left behind the children and any inheritence she may have been entitled to.
Barbara Brackman is giving us a beautiful block each week, and some of the history behind her choices.
Unlike many other projects I'm working on, I'm up to date on this one!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

The last couple of days have been very productive.
In August of 2011, I began a Medallion quilt with Patchwork Pumpkin.  The only rules of the free pattern were that in order to obtain each step from Therese, a photo of the completed previous step must be sent in, and no fabric could be purchased for use in the quilt.  I worked slowly but surely through the first 5 rounds of the medallion.  The 6th step was 72 9 patches on point.  It was here that it all stopped.
A while ago, Linda  prodded me and asked how I was going.  Of course, Linda has finished hers!
So, I finally got moving on Step 6 last Friday.  I was travelling to my regular 6 hour sewing marathon with friends, it seemed like the perfect time to do some very boring sewing. 
From this...

I also sewed along  with Bonnie Hunter whilst she was having a Quilt cam evening(her time)  on Saturday morning (my time).  Every once in a while, Bonnie sews with a live camera hooked up to her website.  It's just like taking a class.  A very enjoyable way to fill in a couple of hours.
To this...

 And finally, these.
Finished up on a very lazy Sunday afternoon.

Next up are the setting triangles to turn them on point, and then to attach these borders onto the quilt.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

I've been handsewing some more on my Medallion started last month with Katrina Hadjimichael.  The sewing is nice and easy, very relaxed.

The half square triangle border went together easily, but the corner squares caused me some trouble.
I wanted to use the fabric that I'd used in the very centre of the block, but I'm not very good at fussy cutting.  After staring at the fabric for ages, I remembered a technique from a class ages ago.  Make a window template that can be moved around until the perfect place is found.

So much easier than just trying to imagine.

Not bad at all!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Well, now I'm all caught up on my Grandmother's Choice blocks.
Last week was this Kansas Sunflower block.

 This block was quite tricky to piece.  This is my back view.  I twirled the petal intersections to get them to lie flat.  I tried very hard to piece the centre circle into the block, but it's been a long long time since I've done that and I just couldn't get it to sit.  So, plan B?  Applique.  Perfect.
The block wasn't sitting straight, so I sprayed a little water on it and blocked it to size. 

Turned out well in the end.
I felt like I was on a roll by this time, so moved on to machine piecing Saturday's block.
New Jersey Suffrage Pioneer.

Thankfully this block was nice and easy to piece. 

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Seems I'm a little behind in posting last weeks Grandmothers Choice  block.

Thankfully a nice easy block to piece, I know the next block isn't as easy- a lovely sunflower block.  Thank goodness I don't mind curved seams!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

A little stitching each day certainly goes a long way towards getting something finished.
Bonnie Hunter's  idea to hand-sew for one hour each day during the month of September(National Sewing Month in USA)  was very good for me.
Finished off these border strips for my Robin's Nest BOM.  I'm now caught up once again!  Well, I will be when I stitch them onto the centre medallion.

Really moving along with the hexagon quilt from last January's Summer School.

Amazing what you can get done with a few episodes of "The Big Bang Theory"! 
No sewing getting done during the day, though.  It's Spring, and the weather has been beautiful the last few days.
Even in the midst of school holidays, sewing is still happening.  Bliss.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

I think I've outsmarted myself this week.
I was quite up to date with my Robin's Nest BOM, so I didn't hurry to stay ahead this month.  I cut everything out and then the pieces just sat.  I was planning to machine stitch everything together for this border.  Well, guess what happens when the pieces won't quickly and easily  go together when machine sewn?  Yes, I get annoyed at myself and put the quilt on the back burner.
However, this month being "hand sewing for an hour a day " month, I finally got moving last night and started hand sewing the pieces together.

I had every intention of machine sewing those little background pieces into the zigzag, certain it would come together very quickly.  Let me tell you, although I have no trouble with sewing y seams, little tiny  y seams are a trouble all of their own!  So, now I'm sewing by hand, the next month of the BOM came this week and now I'm behind!
I've also been hand sewing along on my hexagon quilt.  It's growing slowly but surely.

Only 5 more red diamonds to go and this round is finished.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Hand sewing for 1 hour per day is certainly working for me.
Not always in 1 block, often in 2 or 3 bites, but the minutes do add up.

This will be the centre block of a new medallion I started last weekend.   Katrina Hadjimichael taught her lovely quilt- "Netherfield" at Carolyn's Quilting Room in Wodonga. Whilst I'm not new to English paper piecing, I am new to fussy cutting.  I'm pretty pleased with the results so far, now to graduate to something a little more effective than just centreing a motif on each piece!
I've also started some machine sewing.  My first Grandmother's Choice block.

I've decided to join in on Barbara Brackman's new sew along- "Grandmother's Choice"
Each week for 49 weeks a new 8" block will appear.  The theme this year is Women's Rights and the Suffrage movement of the early 20th Century.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Bonnie Hunter of Quiltville fame has challenged her blog readers to handquilt along with her for 1 hour a day.  She has some projects that need to be finished, and I'm sure most of us do too!
For those of us that aren't hand quilting anything, this challenge encompasses anything sewn by hand.
Handstitching a quilt, embroidery, anything that doesn't involve a machine.
Since I always have at least one hand sewing project happening, I'll be sewing right along.

In my 1 hour last night, I finished sewing the red diamonds and triangles around the centre of my Summer School hexagon quilt, and started to sew the next row of flowers on.

This challenge is just the push I need to sew each day and get this quilt top done.