Monday, February 29, 2016

GO! Mini Half-Hexagons

Well, given the status of the sewing room (or more precisely, the amount of time I've been dedicating to the sewing room -- moving stuff out, painting, moving stuff back in, sorting and sorting and sorting some more), there's not been a lot of time or space for actual sewing. But hey, I finally got the sewing machine back in this past weekend and finished up the half-hexagon mini quilt!

I do love the way some of the GO! dies work together. So here's a half-hexagon and a equilateral triangle lined up and ready to sew:

So easy! And here it is sewn and pressed open:

Now, the half-hexagon mini quilt is all done . . . and Lulubelle likes it!

Who is Lulubelle? Well, years ago I made a cloth doll and brought it over to my mom's house to show it to her. We laid it on her couch.

Mom: Hmmmmm.

Me: Wow. She really matches the color of your couch and chairs, doesn't she?

Mom: Hmmmmm.


Me: I suppose she ought to just stay here, huh?

Mom: I think so.

So, that was that. A week later Mom told me the doll was named Lulubelle. Now Lulubelle reigns over the sewing room and reminds me how lucky I was to have a mother who taught me to sew.

As I finish putting the sewing room back together, I have so many ideas!

For one, all the quilts that had been up on the wall came down. I'm thinking it's time to put up some different ones. Which reminds me of all the little quilts I have in process that I still need to finish. Here's a handful:

I think I'm going to do a little more hand quilting in the near future!

Meanwhile, I'm still on my GO! Sew challenge. So, for this coming week, it's getting patches ready for signatures and well wishes!

Monday, February 15, 2016

Go Sew?

Back in September I gave myself a personal challenge. I called it my GO! Sew Challenge.  I just didn't feel I was using my AccuQuilt GO! enough. I could mention (ahem) all those dies I have that I haven't even used yet.  So there was the challenge -- that every week I would work on a project that used a GO! die and, to keep myself honest, I would post a picture on the blog. I didn't require that I actually use the GO! itself, just that I work on a project that had used one.

So, I'm really quite pleased with myself that, so far, I've met the challenge. I got a lot of little Christmas projects done, and I've got plans for a bed quilt or two. So far, so good. Which brings me to this week and what my sewing room currently looks like.

Which is this:

The good news, of course, is the prospect of newly painted walls and new flooring. The challenge is that my sewing room "stuff" is scattered in toppling, mostly inaccessible piles all over the downstairs.

So, here's the GO! project for this week.  Terrie hand quilts!

I think I might try and keep this up, actually hand quilt a few of my little quilts in process. Taking down the quilts that had been on the wall gives me pretty good motivation to think about getting some new things done.

Civil War reproductions? Two color quilts -- red and white, or blue and white? I'm debating.

Meanwhile, I've got the quilt hoop out and I'm trying to remember how to get a decent quilt stitch. Let's just say I'm not needing to put in any extra effort to get that authentic imperfect primitive look!

Thursday, February 11, 2016


Little hearts in time for Valentine's Day.

Those letters in the border fabric make me smile. Between being a teacher and loving to write, they felt perfect. I also got nostalgic remembering being in grade school and sitting at the kitchen table writing the names of all the other students in my class on their Valentine's cards. Those really cute cards we all signed way back when and stuffed in the shoe boxes we had decorated with construction paper? Do kids still do that?

Look at that puppy face. Adorable.

One last picture, for perspective.

And, hey, appliqué!

Sunday, February 7, 2016

GO! Hearts

I've taken on a February quilt challenge that said to make a small quilt with hearts for the month. I have to admit, my taste for hearts is relatively limited. Pink is out of the question. But since I take it as a given that French General is always a good thing, I decided I'd give it a try. And look, little hearts in pretty fabrics!

I might be going the long way around on this one, too. I could have just fused them. But I really want to work at least a little (a very little?) on my appliqué skills. I counted on  hearts being easy enough even I could handle them.

My circle venture used that wash-away appliqué fiber I needed to pull out.  This time I'm trying  C&T's paper. So far I think it has a nice texture to it, firm but relatively thin.  It even has the advantage of being lightly fusible. I'm liking that. I won't know what I fully think till I'm further along the project, but so far, it's a win.

I ran some of the paper through the GO! using the 2" hearts die.

And then I fused the hearts to fabric and did some turn under with a glue stick.  I was sitting upstairs tackling this project in the evening and at one point my husband looked over at me and said, "I don't know what you're doing over there but it looks like a real pain in the neck."

It's not like I disagreed with him. But, nevertheless, I soldiered on. So, first there was this little guy:

Adorable. It's enough to make me rethink my general antipathy to hearts.  And it really wasn't all that long before I had my collection of twelve.

Now I've got them tentatively laid out. I plan to sew them down using red thread with a button hole stitch. Odds I can get this done to have up for Valentine's?

And while that's going, I also decided to hop on Barbara Brackman's Western Women sampler for the year. Here's block one:

Yes, French General always looks good, but those Civil War reproductions? They speak right to my heart. Will I bring in more colors with the next blocks or make a quilt of blue and brown? I don't know yet, but I sure do love those soft tones.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Snow Day!

The other day I posted that pretty dusting of morning snow:

Today that same part of the yard looks like this:

And then there's our deck:

So, no teaching today! (Still grading though . . . of course).

I am just about done with cleanup in my sewing room from that broken light bulb. I have to admit, every once in a while I just run full head on into my own neurotic self. Broken glass! Broken glass everywhere! Mercury! Ack! Ack! Ack!

So, I'm not quite ready to sew in my sewing room yet. Perhaps later today. I can hope because -- hey! it's a snow day! If I can't play a little hooky in the sewing room on a snow day, when can I?

Meanwhile, I've pulled out an old (so old) hand quilt project.  I was just pondering how old -- this goes back to when I was first learning to piece, so I'm guessing I may have started this 20 years ago, maybe a year or two longer than that. I have cheating in mind. If I just finish hand-quilting the sashing, then I'll give myself permission to machine quilt the borders. Because, honestly, I am never going to hand quilt those borders in order to finish this thing.

I still like it though. The bear paw remains one of my favorite blocks. I think I see another bear paw mini in my near future. Meanwhile, here I am trying to remember how to hand quilt!