Saturday, September 30, 2017

August Favorite Pictures

It is close to the end of the month, I thought I would show you the top 10 pictures of last month before I am officially late.  There were a lot of pictures I liked for August.  I will show you September's best pictures next month.

Two types of sedum in my yard.

 Wildflowers at the park.

Wildflowers at the park.

Field of wildflowers at the park.

This little bug came to see what we were having for lunch.

My darling Zeus.

I usually pull out the vines that grow near the air conditioner, but this passionflower is white and so pretty. The bugs approve. The passion-fruit has ripened in time to be eaten this year. Yum!

Evening walk downtown. There was a food truck festival. It was so popular that many of the food trucks ran out of food.

I like the way these leaves look like a merry go round.

Darby Creek.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

What I Did This Summer

This is actually what I did since the last time we talked, but this sounds much better, doesn't it? Lots of happenings on the High Road.  Genealogy has ruled most of the summer. Saturday, I attended a genealogy workshop at our library with Joshua Taylor, of Genealogy Roadshow.

I am borrowing photographs from other members of the family so I can make copies of them for my files. This is a big collection of photos and I got the smart idea to photograph the photos instead of scanning them. Upon viewing them today, though, I realize that my blurry photographs of blurry photographs yields even blurrier photographs, and I should really be scanning them. I am not sure I have fully recovered from Scanfest to start over again. If you recall, many years ago, I scanned all my old photographs that had people in them. I later lost them all due to a hard drive crash. I still haven't found the backup CDs (Hopefully I have them), so that might be a part of my reluctance to start over again on such a project.

I've made a couple trips to a cemetery to find some burial markers for some of my daughter's ancestors. For some reason, I didn't have photos of them on my genealogy software.  While I was there, I took pictures of the rest of the markers in the section and posted them to FindaGrave. Both times I went, I just took pictures until I ran out of battery power on the camera. They now have a feature that other people will transcribe the markers for you so you don't have to, but I went ahead and transcribed them too. I still have more family markers in other sections to find.

My UFOS aren't limited to quilts!  I finally got around to staining my porch floor. I wanted to make sure that I got it done before the leaves start falling. My neighbors leaves are already falling, so I am cutting it close! The resulting stain color is a big change from the original which you see here, and is much darker, but it is growing on me.  I really like that this project is now done. I still need to figure out how to keep sparrows from nesting on my porch. While I don't mind the idea of sharing my porch with birds, these birds are not respectful neighbors and make a big mess on my porch.

Other housework has also cropped up.  My refrigerator conked out, so I had to quickly choose a new one, which was really hard because I wanted one with the same features as my current one. I didn't find one, but I found an adequate substitute. And then finding a salesclerk who can sell it to me, empty old fridge, fill new fridge, deal with the old one in the tiny kitchen(!) until the recycling people could pick it up, etc.

There is also news on the quilting front. I really enjoyed making my red and white mystery quilt, so I thought it would be fun to make another red and white quilt. (The backing for the mystery quilt is chosen and pressed so hopefully it will reach finished stage soon).  I am basing this quilt on a picture of a finished quilt instead of a pattern, so I am sure I am making it the wrong way, but it is working out all right.  I liked the idea of tiny blocks just because tiny blocks are so cute, so I made these blocks tiny.

I know that each of these blocks should be using the same fabric in each one, but I didn't plan ahead.  I made a long rail fence before subcutting and making the big block and turned that into that first block. Then I subcut, turned the inside pieces, and pieced into the final block.  It is now an experiment to see how that affects the finished project.

I realize that this quilt requires very precise cutting and piecing. That center block is supposed to finish at half an inch. You might as well get your reservation on a galloping horse now. I hear there is a huge demand for them.

Linked to:
Share Your Improv  I hope this counts as improv. I improvised a way to make the blocks, and the fabric isn't the same in each of the blocks, etc.

Monday, September 11, 2017

The Mystery is Revealed

I had a great time following the seven day mystery from Threadbare Creations!

On day one, we got barely a morsel of a clue. Four patches. And I showed them to you with even less detail, to keep the mystery for those who wanted to follow along. I didn't do any of the homework assignments. It isn't safe for me to have cut pieces around and expect me to be able to find them later.

I chose to make mine in red and white even though she recommended blue and white, so I can build up my red and white collection. With my luck it is something that won't work in anything but blue and white, but what could it be? Even faces can be made with purple and other colors.

On day two, we made four of these cute little blocks, and I decided that I had chosen well in following along with this mystery:

I wondered if the quilt would be put on point. On day three, we made four of these blocks, and even though it made me think we might not, I still thought it might be put on point. I liked that there would be directional movement in the quilt. Hmm, four of each. Seems like there might be a block missing. Maybe the center block.

On day four, we made four of these blocks. How adorable are these?!  They definitely will serve well as corner pieces.

On day 5, we made four of these blocks.  This isn't completely sewn, but it looks like a great cross so I wanted to show you.

One day six, we made the center block.  I also tried out some layouts.

In this layout, I put the day two pieces on the inside. Note that the airplane / sword looking pieces are facing out.

The corner pieces are also facing out.

In this layout, I alternated the day two link blocks with the sword. Day six is also the day I forgot how to follow the directions.  It made sense to have the red pieces in the corner to follow the diagonal. That center block isn't supposed to look like an H.  I decided to wait until the reveal to decide whether it was a design choice or a mistake.

On day seven, I decided I liked the plus better than the H, so I made some alterations, one side at a time. When I fixed one side, it looked like a Y.  An H and a Y for Happy!

It looks like a nice plus sign with the second alteration and the whole quilt can be pieced. Those triangle pieces all face inward, not outward. How interesting!

It looks like there are four keys leading to the center.  And four kites or four roads leading to home. Yes, I see that one of my roads is different from the others. But that is perfectly all right, because all snowflakes are different from each other.

It is a snowflake. A red snowflake!  The fabric looks great as a snowflake, because it adds a lacy effect.   I'm not sure it still looks like a snowflake in red, but I really like the design and am really happy with it.

I really liked that Rose had us strip piece so much, and we were preparing for blocks that were coming up. It is irritating when we are made to do things the hard way. When I strip piece, I usually only do one block at a time, and maybe I can think farther ahead in the future. I'm glad I did this mystery because not only did I get a beautiful quilt, I also learned something.

Thank you Rose, for a fun mystery. I will get it sandwiched and quilted before sending a quilt reveal picture.

Linked to:
Moving it Forward
Let's Bee Social

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Mystery Sew Along

Ever since I finished the Adinkra top, I have wanted to start a new quilt.  My mind is racing at all the beautiful quilts I want to start. I could finish one of my many WIPs.  I could start a scrap quilt to tame the scrap box. Oh but which scrap quilt. There are so many wonderful choices.

Then I come across a blog, and Rose at Threadbare Creations has just started a short and small mystery quilt-along. A small quilt is just the perfect.  It will let me work on a brand new quilt, but because it is small, I will be able to quickly get to work on a WIP.  If she can make a quilt in 7 days, surely I can finish it within a year, right?

It is a two fabric quilt, which means it could be  a two color quilt. She used and recommends blue and white. I have blue and white quilts on my bulletin board, and while a blue and white color quilt would look great with the others, I am hoping to use a different color.   I went to the Cave of Wonder and received these two fabrics.  They will give me a chance to increase my red and white quilt collection.

The blue fabric is the backing for the Adinkra top.  I will add a strip to make it wide enough and then it will be ready to be sandwiched.

I really like this red fabric.  It might be a Walmart find, but I am not sure.

So far, I really like how it is coming together. I didn't show you the blocks in case you want to follow along too and don't want the mystery solved early.

Linked to:
Let's Bee Social

Sunday, September 3, 2017

The Cave of Wonder

Since I have finished piecing the Adinkra top. it is now time to quilt it.  Quilting a top requires finding a backing fabric.  I decided it would be too difficult to find a backing fabric for an African quilt in my stash, and should quilt something else.  After all, I have several quilts ready to quilt, all lined up on hangers, with backing pieced and ready.

I couldn't help myself, though, and took a quick peek at the stash to see if I might be able to find anything that might work for Adinkra.  My modern fabrics won't work as they are too light, and the only thing left is my stack of blue fabric.  I might have bought enough fabrics for several quilts when I was making the (still unfinished) Shakespeare in the Park.. There is blue in the Adinkra quilt, but the SITP is a traditional quilt. Wouldn't hurt to look though.

 I looked at that stack and found it.

Imagine going to a wise elder in Africa, and asking for a backing fabric. The wise elder isn't going to give you choices.  He or she will say "this is the fabric you need."  No choices, but it will be the right option. When looking for blue border fabric, she chose a green and orange print, and yet when looking for a orange/brown/yellow print for the backing, she chose a blue one.  Who am I to argue?

It's not an African print, but I am pretty sure I bought it to go with the blue African prints. Everywhere on the internet today, people are showing off their new fabric purchases.  I don't need new fabric purchases. I have renamed my sewing room the Cave of Wonder.

I have a Cave of Wonder that always delivers.