Rainbow Scrappy Challenge

I decided to participate in the 2015 Rainbow scrappy challenge without a lot of thought beyond, it would be good to use up some of my scraps and use my new Go cutter to do it.  So I made a heap of leaves for my leaders and enders project which I blogged about in a previous post.
I took the easy way out after that and made these 9 patch blocks and one four patch star block (using 2.5" squares) ...but I quickly lost interest and haven't been back to them.  
But then this morning I saw this block when I was reading what the other challenge participants had been making.  And I knew that I needed  wanted to make another quilt using this block! 
Photo from: http://stitchandsow-homeandgarden.blogspot.com.au/
Of course because I am avoiding finishing my basket quilt, suddenly I had to have a clean up in the sewing room and found this little plum toned table runner (previously made using orphan blocks).  It just needed a little bit of quilting and the binding.  So at least I can say I finished something, !
And in my continuing theme of procrastination I have been mending jeans....and deconstructing a pair for patches...and perhaps a bag...if I can find the pattern I fancied using - obviously my clean up wasn't good enough!
Oh and I started the cutting for a new project, from my new Kim Diehl book "Simple Appeal".
No I am not making blue baskets...probably should, but I am a red girl at heart :)
Happy quilting Sue.

Zig zag baskets

Gotcha, well I hope I got this picture to work.  The photo has strange blue sections on it, but hopefully it works once posted onto blogger.  This is my contemplation for today.  Because I do like this setting, just got to work out how to fill in the ends though.  
There will be sewing today, just not sure it will be on this project ; )
Happy quilting, Sue.

Citrus Basket

Its SEW easy to procrastinate!
 This fabric basket (free pattern online http://www.allpeoplequilt.com/how-to-quilt/organization/diy-storage-projects)  is suppose to be a box/rectangle shape but I just used the interfacing I had in the cupboard and it wasn't heavy enough.
 But its a handy size to keep a few sewing things...even though it has a kitchen print liner!
 Ah just perfect for my pattern collection.  Oops there's another pattern I have never made...hmmm and I have been wanting a summer table runner...hmmm in citrus colours would be nice ;)
 More procrastinating...in the form of shopping.  This beautiful print was perfect for my log cabin backing, found at my local multinational outlet starting with S - the shop I love to whinge about.  But surprising I am fairly happy with the new local shop, there is a small section of quilting fabric, but it was neat, tidy, the bolts were colour sorted, there was a mix of reproductions and moderns, all easy to view AND this was $9.06 per metre...yep I was pleasantly surprised.  

So after all that faffing around, I sewed the blocks into vertical rows -which is a first for me!  I do have a photo of them in the zig zag layout, but blogger will only load half the photo - not sure what the problem is.  But my issue is making a decision AND doing the math to get the pieced border to fit.  Well probably if I am really honest with myself, the bigger issue is not making too many more citrus coloured projects from the border fabrics....cos I would hate to do the math and then run out of fabric...especially if I had made something else with it!
Right off to find my calculator, 
happy quilting, Sue.

Farm House Kitchen Basket top

I had been good and done lots of domestic jobs, so thought I could have some time out for sewing fun.  And as per usual the sewing has taken over and the jobs need doing again!
I found 3 more basket blocks.  Of course they needed unpicking and resewing.  My original seam allowance was a fraction too wide.  But also some of the pieces were cut a fraction too small.  Still I managed to get the blocks re sewn, but I was one short to make a row.  

 So I made a fourth block -  there were plenty of spare pieces cut already....mainly because I pre cut all the pieces as required by pattern, then decided to not follow the pattern!  To celebrate summer I thought I needed one citrus coloured block...especially as the appliqued fruit is cherries, applies, pears and plumbs, not a orange or lemon to be seen.
I would like to celebrate at this point, 
but adding an extra row comes with its own problems.
It means the appliqued blocks are no longer in the middle!  And more to the point it means my measurements are uneven on the sides and even on the top and bottom, so need to do the tricky maths to get the pieced border to fit :(
Yikes, this changing the pattern is a dangerous business!
How lucky am I - this is the third lot of gifted fabric I have received since moving to the country - this is a present from Elaine my friend from Adelaide.  These huge bundle of fabrics are shop samples pieces, that she brought somewhere in country SA at a patchwork shop.  I can see more beautiful cot quilts in my future!
Happy quilting, Sue.

Log cabin flimsy finish

Oops my bad!  
So sorry but I really did think that I had posted a photo of my finished Log Cabin (70" x 84").

Ta da!  Dang blast, there is a boo boo :(
Ah that's better.
Now I just have to buy some backing then its off to the long arm quilter for this top.

This is the reason that I forgot I had a flimsy finish to brag about....
Yep that's right - I am working on my Farm House Kitchen Basket quilt...again!
Lisa reminded me that I had taken this quilt away on our last two retreats....hmm that means its been on the WIP list for more then 2 years....does that make it a UFO?....perhaps I had better get to and finish it ASAP!
I have two more blocks to finish the sashing and neutral corners to put them on point, (one still needs a handle) and then I need to decided if I like this setting OR I want to go with the original setting, which was laid out with staggered vertical rows - so the neutral backgrounds make a zig zag.  But that requires me to make some half blocks :(
These blocks  are 17" finished, so in this setting and with the 9 patch border the finished quilt will be 80" x 80" .....hmm and its still summer and it was always going to be my summer bed quilt, if I can just finish it super quick!

Happy quilting Sue.



Loving log cabin quilts

These are my log cabin blocks measuring 5.5' before I sized them up...well about 83 blocks,  I ended up with 126.
So I like the barn raising set out but with more blocks, bigger blocks I was keen to explore options.
 I think this is called furrows??  That fits with the whole living in the woods and farming theme I guess.  Its nice, but think that it doesn't float my boat enough to commit to.
I have no idea what this setting is called, excuse the boo boo on the bottom row.  Again its nice, but I think it looks way nicer when you have skinny logs on side and fatter the other = a round effect.
 So Barn Raising it is = this is 120 blocks, six spare, hopefully I remember to go on the backing.  Faced with stitching all the blocks into rows I decided I had better get the leader & ender system working.  It was a good idea as I got all the rows stitched and ten new blue leaves.  I have decided to follow along with the Rainbow scrappy challenge and January's colour is blue.  As you can see, the sum total of last years leaders and enders is on the left...this is what the finished product needs to look like.  I will sew them together when I have a bunch more colours.
Of course I have way more half square triangles then I need for leaves.
So just deciding what to do with the rest.  Something to think anyway.
Last but not least these are some of my presents from Lisa - we swap pressies at Christmas time.  She made me a lovely pencil case, a card wallet and a apple oven mitt.  There was also a great bobbin holder, that is in use and didn't make it into the photo.  I have a collection of fruit themed oven mitts, table mats and pin cushions on my Pinterest page - so I especially love this apple ; )
Happy quilting, Sue.

Road trip and a quilt show

On Sunday we had a family road trip to Warrnambool, so the kids could see a miniature train exhibition and that I could attend the Southern Right Quilt Show.  
Dresden's by  Barbara Johnston
Jelly Explosions by Ann Donaldson
Fundraiser quilt by Ann Donaldson
Chocolate and Raspberries by Janine Carson
Denim Quilt by Brenda Harrison
 Bush Pig by Alison Withers
Pies and Tarts by Helen Breen
 Check out this quilt....those blocks are log cabin and stripe pieced diamonds.  Apologies to the maker Anna Bradley, I cannot make out what she titled this quilt, but it was a favorite - especially as I am neck deep in log cabins at present!
Ballarat Beauties by Joanne Donovan
We had a great day out, the kids also enjoyed the fantastic playground and the scrumptious fish and chips in the park before the long trip home.
Loot purchased by me!
As I type we are experiencing a rain storm like I have never seen before, it is just hammering down.  We got an inch of rain last Friday and Saturday - to get more rain in such volume is so unusual in January.  It has been raining steadily for the last two hours, luckily I did the five loads of washing (did I mention we had 2 lots of visitors) yesterday (and got them all dry) and brought the groceries.  I think if I need to go out today I am going to need a boat...luckily I plan on staying home and sewing!  I am very close to finishing upsizing my log cabins ;)
I have only had to unpick a few logs....cannot have duplicate fabrics in a "scrappy" quilt.  
Happy quilting, Sue

Its hot, hot, hot, budgie!

While it has been hot, hot, hot here, this morning some light rain and a drop in temperatures has been appreciated by everyone in the family....including our new (first ever family) pets!
Welcome Snuffleupagus (grey boy) and Emily (green girl) Budgie.  There are lots of words related to patchwork that the spell checker questions me about, but apparently Snuffleupagus is a word, cos its in spell checker!  Our six year old son named the budgies and in case you didn't know Emily is a green female train from Thomas the Tank Engine and Snuffleupagus is a large hairy mammoth like creature on Sesame Street!  
Right back to quilty things - this is my box of scrap blue fabrics.  It was compressed into 2 zip lock bags of A4 size when we moved house - but has grown since being released into a box!  While it has been hot I have been ironing (argh) and cutting (bliss, love my Go cutter) the larger pieces into triangles and squares.  See my new box...loving Kmart fishing section!
The partitions are really deep in this box.  There is literally one green triangle and about 40 in each stack of the blue.  The question is - should I use the triangles to make my leaders and enders blocks OR
should I make something new!! Like Ocean waves???  
Sigh.  I am a little ahead of myself...no white triangles yet! 
BUT I do have lots more log cabin blocks, 83 to be exact.  This has been a fun project during the heat of the day.  Hmmm except I am about to run out of the red I was using for the centres.  
SO 
I either make the blocks bigger (currently 5.5"unfinished)
OR 
I start using different reds for the centres?
I want a big quilt!
Happy quilting, Sue.

Log Cabin quilt commences

I have been setting up my sewing space into a more function workplace.  That included borrowing all the extra picture hooks from the walls of other rooms, so I could hang all my quilts.  Correction, hang the quilts that I liked.  The ones that are out of favour are still sitting in a pile! 
I have also been using my new Go cutter and new 1.5" die to cut strips from my reproduction fabrics.  This seemed like a good idea at the time because a) my reproduction fabrics are in mainly housed in that cane basket in the bottom right corner of the above photograph (e.g. I knew where they were)
b) I have always wanted to make a log cabin quilt and c) I had a new book and magazine with log cabin patterns in them.  This is my progress 39 blocks so far!
 I am still thinking about the splash of cheddar, black and light blue and I think that I will just continue the way I started.  Which was to pull out the smallest pieces and cut them up, followed by the colours I was missing.  I had cut two prints which I thought might read as lights - a cream with green print and a cream with coral print.  However in this photo I can see that they read more as darks and I wont continue using them.  These blocks are making me very happy and have been a good way to spend a couple of very very hot days...days where friends were being evacuated, we could smell smoke in the air from fires far away and all the news reports were about bushfire's.
We picked apricots off our tree two days ago.  As you can see from the twenty cent piece they are not huge, but they sure pack a punch in the flavour department.  We ate some and lots got made into jam.
Mum came around and deliver a hands on class in jam making 101.  Mum is a dab hand at making jam after 40 odd years of experience, every summer!  It was stinking hot (eg 43C) outside and slightly better inside, as the air conditioner struggled to keep up.  Confession, I sewed log cabin blocks and Mum made the jam.....I did help with the cutting and odd stir, but basically she made it! 
Happy quilting Sue.



Farewell 2014!

I love lists, but they do hold you accountable!  My finished project tally for 2014 was;
 4 mini quilts, 2 wall hangings, 12 cot quilts, 2 lap quilts, 3 single bed quilts and 2 double bed quilts!  
Not too bad if I don't say so myself!
There was lots of dreaming about I would make in 2014 and this wall hanging was top of my wish list.
Bittersweet briar -  was on the wish list = completed!
On my wish list I managed to make 4 out of the 8 desired projects...so while that isn't great, I take comfort in the fact that one "wish" was to make a charity quilt and I ended up making 3!
 
Leaders and enders from wish list = I managed to make four blocks!
On the UFO list....well not so good there, there are currently 9 items unfinished, four of which I started in 2014!  
...but I did finish this ancient UFO, finally in December!
All Aussie creatures great and small, a pattern by Millamac.  
This is a sneaky finish as my friend and long arm quilter Elaine Kennedy custom quilted it and returned it to me weeks ago and all I had to do was sew the binding, label and hanging sleeve on it.  I ended up going back to her house to use her domestic machine to sewing the binding on before we moved house, but to date it is still without a label or hanging sleeve.
I was going to gift it to my boys for Christmas.  I found them snuggled up under it watching TV, post Christmas.  I had completely forgotten to wrap and present it, but they found it anyway!  Elaine had lots of fun with the quilting, adding extra animals and insects, plus loads of details to the existing animals.  I love it and very happy it is done...one hanging sleeve coming up so it can go on the wall pronto!
Happy quilting Sue.

Quilty progress

Despite the distractions of school holidays, work trips and feeding orphan lambs (while the real farmers in my family were away on holidays...