Early in the year, are quilt Guild issued a UFO challenge. I made a list of about a dozen items, thinking that I would be able to accomplish maybe half of them. Well it turns out that that was an ambitious goal. I got two done this year so far. I do have one more month to go, and a couple of simple projects that I would be able to knock out. So, I have showed pictures of my bright lights big city quilt in its various stages. I can honestly say that I finally have it quilted and bound and it is complete!
I blogged about it way back in August of 2015… and am unable to add the link!! Ugh! As I recall, I don’t think it took a long time to piece this. I guess the quilts just need to age a bit before being quilted. So, a few pictures, and then the finish…
The corner units on Bright Lights Big City are paper pieced. The template is found in this book… I love to use a design wall, and slowly build a project… changing out placement until it feels just right. These fabrics at the time were a bit out of my comfort zone, and it looking back, I sure mixed them up and made it work!
You can see that each of the four units made consists of four pieced corners and a center. To keep some consistency in the quilt I kept the “V” shaped sections, and the very center all a bright pink. The centers in each of the four sections is also in a polka dot. Sewing curves? Not so hard. Victoria gives great direction in doing this kind of piecing.
And so then… not long after my piecing was completed, I picked up a great backing from a clearance bolt found at a shop in Minnesota. Together… once I mixed the two into a bag, they marinated – for a couple of years!! Then, onto the longarm they went! I was feeling bold and brave enough to really try to do some ruler work. I can point out all my flaws and mistakes, but for the most part, no one else would unless they really analyzed it. On the whole, I came a long way with it. I don’t longarm often enough to really feel like I “have it” down. But, I progress slowly!
And for now this beauty rests on the back of a chair by the fireplace. I envision myself there some winter day by the fire in my big overstuffed chair, reading while covered with this!
And there will be tea…
We all have those who have gone before us, paved the way, and in some way manage to inspire us and educate us on our creative path. For so many and for so long, this person has been Nancy Zieman. While the set of Wisconsin Public Television’s show “Sewing With Nancy” has gone quiet and dark, this amazing woman’s legacy lives on! Her body of work will be seen over and over again on television and the internet. Her books, dvds and patterns grace many bookshelves. Not only did she show us how to “make things”, she was a role model for so many in the industry. I had never met her, but would have liked to. We were neighbors. Well, almost. We lived in the same county in Wisconsin. I don’t generally have celebrity awestruck moments, but I would think that Nancy would have been one of those people. If I had run into her at the grocery, I can pretty much tell you that I would have been tongue tied. People of character who are successful and giving are the role models I look up to.
Thanks for sharing your passion Nancy!
or really three desks! Luanne and I have some desk history….
The old story goes like this…Over 30 years ago I bought a desk from my Mom’s friends husband. He was a lawyer and it was from his firm. It was a big old desk and had great storage. Not long after the purchase, I was going to move and Luanne’s Dad bought the desk. Luanne in turn ended up with the desk I believe when her Dad moved. Now, Luanne and I were out of contact for a long while after high school. So, when we reconnected and started quilting together, I came to her house to sew. I did not know that she had the desk and used it to sew on. I recognized it right away.
and the new story…. I had purchased a new Elna sewing machine (roughly 2 + years ago) that I ultimately wanted to drop down into a desk so that the bed of the machine would be level with the desk. My husband found a big old desk that lived in a bank during its first life. Together we measured, cut a hole and routed the edge for the acrylic surround of the machine. We put a shelf below for the machine to sit on. The desk had some wear, so it was sanded and stained. The beast has great storage and will need to be taken apart to get it out of the room! So, fast forward… Luanne got her Elna sewing machine this summer. Again, my husband and myself found a desk almost identical to mine at a second hand store. Luanne wanted it for her machine. Her son cut, routed and added a shelf. And here is what she has….
Such a nice set up… and clear workspace! Looks beautiful!
I did warn her that this could happen….
Guess it’s clean up time for me!
In an effort to get out of the driveway this morning, it took both of us (my husband and I) to scrape the car windows. More denial going on, and I am not alone in it this time… the ice scrapers were not in the car, but still in the garage. The car, rather than being in the garage overnight was in the drive covered in a layer of frost. I used an old debit card… worked great!
We are slowly thinking about this winter thing, while others are miles ahead. Some bundles of wood were bought and placed in front of the fireplace. Gloves and a winter coat are also being worn. But the scarf I just bought is at home laying on the counter. Oh well!
My Grandson loves pancakes… but Grandma did not make them for him… instead I made “Pam-Cakes”! And seeing as how my name is Pam, well you get it… Gluten free and made from almond flour.
I had it in my head yesterday morning that I would quickly load a small quilt on the longarm. Then later in the day I would try to get it quilted. Our quilt guild has a challenge going on called “The Purrect Challenge”. A woman in the area had a lot of cat fabric that she donated to our guild, with the idea that it would go toward making items for charity. And so many items from pet mats, to pillow cases and little quilts and more have been in the works.
I happened to have a stack of apple core pieces that I had previously cut from my scrap bin. Every now and again I want to whittle down that unruly mess of scraps. So, I used the cat fabrics amongst my scraps and put together a 45″ x 45″ quilt. Lots of color and variety, and I think it turned out pretty cute. I loaded the quilt while the rest of the household was occupied. And then I thought… if I could just get a start on the quilting until they discover that I am missing…. Well, I did a basic large meander on this quilt and in no time was on the last row. That is when I was found out! My grandson watched closely and asked questions while I moved along with the very fast stitching. The binding has been sewn to the edge and I just need to handstitch the binding to the back. That is the part I enjoy a great deal! Love doing binding.
If you haven’t tried curved piecing… don’t be intimidated!! I don’t pin like crazy. Three pins at the most. Sew slowly, use a stylus to help keep things lined up. The Accuquilt die I used had notches to help keep things lined up, as well as using care and matching seams.
I have one other quilt that I am finishing the binding on! Two in one week! Big time fun!
was falling from the sky when I left for work this morning. I will have to admit here that I am in denial about it all. The real word for it is SLEET! I have lived in Wisconsin almost all of my life and I am pretending that winter is not going to happen. Must be a coping skill. I have yet to pull out a winter coat. It was enough to pull out socks! I would much rather wear flip flops all the time. I believe I will need to go coat shopping. Every year, I tell myself that I will get a new coat, and then I just kind of make do with what I have.
Aside from that there has been a good deal of productive sewing. Some Christmas items. Below is my current project.
Beautiful and fun fabrics. The light fabric…I just have no clue or idea where or when I got that. It works great in this project!
Again, I pulled out the Squedge 22.5 ruler to make a table center. I was not so sure how the stripe would work out, but I am very pleased with the outcome. I still need to applique a circle at the center, and do the finishing work. For this piece I will layer batting, backing right side up and pieced top, face down. Using a ruler and rotary cutter, I cut around the top piece to cut the layers. I will stitch leaving an opening, flip, top stitch the edges and then do a little more straight stitching to hold it all together. Oh, and a great deal of steam and Best Press.
I still have all of the finishing to do, but this should not take too long! Very pleased with the results!
The pattern itself can be found on the site where they also sell the rulers: phillipsfiberart.com
Perhaps working with all these bright colors keeps me from thinking about the upcoming season and that four letter word…SNOW!
Have a bright day!
And all that goes with it! Shorter days, blustery days and gray sky days. This also means time for grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup, extra quilts, warm socks and quilting time.
The flooring is mostly done, just some molding to finish. Then of course really decorating and putting the room back together is on the list! So far, I am liking the look of things! It is nice to change things up from time to time.
Luanne and I were fortunate enough to go away for a weekend retreat with some ladies from our quilt guild. We really had a great time getting to know and build friendships with these ladies. We were silly and serious, and of course supported each others air stitching and un sewing. There may be a couple pictures to share… some items we were both working on were of the gifting variety, so we will use care in not sharing those! We both made progress, and we both hit walls. Parts at home, on the counter. Parts left on the cutting table at home. What were we to do? Go to the local quilt shop! Buy more projects!! And we did!
I started a new quilt using a 60 degree triangle, and some Tabby Road – Tula Pink Fabrics. It will be a nice throw size! One day I had picked up the fat quarter pack, and the next day found a pattern that worked out perfectly. The quilt is from a book called A Modern Twist by Natalie Barnes. I had to sew a few strips together, and most all of the cutting is complete. I think it will be a fun piece to work on. The book can be found HERE.
Now that I am settling back into my sewing room (after a wee bit of unpacking), I am working to finish a project that I started during retreat. Most all of the blocks are now done and ready to be laid out and then sewn together.
Then there is this project on the longarm now:
I am about an hour or so away from finishing the quilting. I need to get this done as there a few other pieces that need to meet the big machine.
And then.. a Purrfect Challenge quilt to finish soon! And then… this sentence could go on for a very long time!
Stay warm and think cozy!