Friday, December 31, 2021

Quilt Reveal: Get Well Wishes for the World

 I almost didn't make this quilt. 

This quilt started as a block for the Postage Stamp quilt. I had cut some pink squares. I thought it would be interesting to make a rogue block for the Postage Stamp quilt - one that had patterned fabric instead of a solid as a constant. So I started making it, but soon realized that I hadn't counted how many squares I had cut and didn't have nearly enough. I knew I could find another pink and make it a rogue rogue block. One with two constants as well as a patterned fabric.

But I didn't like my choices of an additional pink. One of the things I really like about the Postage Stamp quilt is that I can work on it after work when I have decision fatigue. Easy chain piecing a constant to another fabric.


So instead of throwing this in the orphan block box, I thought I could make a mini quilt out of it. It is already started so I would have a good head start.


I found fabrics I liked with it for a mini quilt, but it really wasn't inspiring me. I thought about throwing it in the orphan block box. I had already added it to my spreadsheet and announced it on my blog, but I thought I could get a quiet annulment without anyone noticing.


Then I remembered that Cheri Payne had made a quilt with a block on one side and a vase on the other side.  I liked that plan.


I cut out some shapes for the vase and the minute I set it down, it looked like a bed on the left, and some get well flowers you would send or take to someone who wasn't feeling well. The news was on and they were telling us how the whole country is red in terms of infections, and the COVID infections is higher now than it has ever been.


This quilt is dedicated to the whole world - all the people who have passed away, all the people who are mourning them, all the people who are sick, all the people who are doing their best to avoid getting sick, and all the people who are taking care of others.

The quilt is 11" x 8".

I want to thank Wendy at The Constant Quilter for all of her support and encouragement in making a small quilt each month.


Wednesday, December 29, 2021

Quilt Reveal: October Holiday House

It's not October yet, but here October Holiday House is way ahead of the pack, ready for the new year.

I told you the story of when I bought the kit a couple of weeks ago.

 I started making the kit at the end of October 2021. I have been trying to make one small quilt a month. Using the kit which has marinated long enough was a good option.

I put this quilt away to get ready for the October birthday gathering, and kept it away for the week we met with the customers.

I brought it out to work on, but it had to be set aside again for the Portrait Representation Quilt. I did work on it a little bit that week, but this week I was able to give it full time attention to finish it.

The kit included everything you needed to make the top and the binding. I had a couple of fat quarters that had accidentally been sent to me in the mail instead of what I had ordered. I was allowed to keep them and they both came in handy for this quilt.


I cut out the October from one of them and did not have to make individual letters. I also used that fabric for the label. I really liked using tulle as a design element.

The pumpkins and the spider came from the other fat quarter. The kit came with buttons, but they have shanks on the back and I didn't want to use them that way. That fabric is also used for the backing.

It was a fun mini to make and helped warm up my free motion confidence to work on the Representation Portrait Quilt.

Sunday, December 26, 2021

Quilt Progress


I finished another Postage Stamp block as a Leader / Ender while I was working on the Representation Quilt. In case you missed it, I drew names and our family is sharing art that represents the gift recipient..

We decided to hold our family gathering virtually because of schedules and the virus. This means that we have to give some time to mail our representation gifts. I will let you know what fun ideas everyone had after we distribute them and hold our gathering.

I finished my Representation Quilt and sent it off. I will show that one to you later as well.

2021:  Week 52 of 15 Minutes to Stitch

I might have mixed up my weekly count since I am on week 52 and there are 52 weeks in a year. This is the next to last post for the year.

I've made quilting progress. I finished the Representation Portrait Quilt I showed you in my last post. Since it is a gift, and it is in the mail for the receiver, I will wait to show you the finished project.

While I was attaching the borders and working on that quilt, I sewed the rows for the red Postage Stamp block as  a Leader and Ender.

I also worked on the Halloween quilt while I was procrastinating working on the Representation Portrait quilt.


There are 52 weeks in a year and I am already on week 52. My date mix-up probably means that my stats are better than reported.  There was a week where I didn't remember what I had done and gave myself a  0 for the week. The auditor is on holiday and not willing to figure out the discrepancy. I am pretty sure it means I am at 100%  now.

15 minute days this week --7 out of 7
15 minute days this year -- 295 out of 360 days
Success rate  = 82%
Last year had a Leap year Day, so we also had 53 weeks, and the first week of this year only had 4 days.

Linked with:

15 Minutes to Stitch

Interesting finds this week:

While I was procrastinating working on the Representation Portrait Quilt, I found a YouTube Channel by Mary Fons. She is the daughter of Marianne Fons of Fons and Porter. The show is actually on Twitch platform, but you can watch on YouTube. She hosts regular casual chat sessions where she shares lots of different quilts and quilty topics. Like Bonnie Hunter, it is a mostly a live show where she interacts with the audience and then tells you some things that makes it worth the visit.

There is no time limit for each episode, but it was difficult to work while watching this, because there are interesting things that require your eyeballs on the show, although there are parts where she is talking where you can work on other things. It is called Quilt Nerd, and she is working on fine-tuning the show.

This quilt is in Issue 80 of Today's Quilter. It is made by Maria Lizano using quilt blocks from the Jane Stickle quilt. I have a whole bunch of blocks left done, more than 100 if I remember correctly.


Sunday, December 19, 2021

2021: Week 51 of 15 Minutes to Stitch

At our last Zoom family gathering in October, we had this conversation.

One of my relatives mentioned she had painted a portrait of our brother. She said she had heard that you should paint portraits of people you love instead of strangers. She was planning on painting more portraits of family members.

Someone said something positive about this idea.

Another person said that it would be nice for all of us to draw names and gift a portrait to each other this year. More conversation followed about ways this would work with different skill sets. Someone said that we could make something that represented the gift recipient which wouldn't have to be a painting.

Yet another person said, "I'd be up for that."

I said, "Let's do it."

Nobody said it was a stupid idea. Nobody said, "No, I don't want to do that."

We moved on to other conversations. 

So after the gathering, I drew names and texted everyone who they needed to make a "something that represents the gift recipient" for. I wanted to give people lots of time to work on their gift.

Everyone said, "What is this? What are you talking about? Did I agree to this?" Nobody wanted to take credit for this idea.

But they had agreed at the gathering so now they have to do it. They all said okay, some more grudgingly than others.

I thought about what I wanted to do. My plan was to make a fabric collage for my portrait. She sent me a photo she liked. Of course it had to be a picture with a cat in it. I looked for and bought a jelly roll full of different shades of neutral colors, especially shades of brown. I figured I would work on actually making the portrait after I finished the October quilt I showed you yesterday.

We started talking about our upcoming holiday gathering.  The one where we present our gifts to our giftees. People started offering possible dates.

2021:  Week 51 of 15 Minutes to Stitch


I took a good look at the calendar. Even though I knew the deadline was coming up, these concrete dates created a panic. I have to stop working on the October quilt and shift to this portrait quilt.

My mother asked me to print a photo of her recipient on to fabric. I did that for her. She is going to add some embroidery and turn it into a pillow.

I know I had software that could make a line drawing, but that was before the computer crash. I looked for an app that would create a line drawing that I could use for the collage. I didn't find it and didn't want to take more time to keep looking. What I found that I think will work is an app that turns the photo into a color drawing. I cropped the background to keep the focus on the person and to make the pieces bigger. I really like it.

The original plan was to continue with the background so the quilt will be more than 8x10 but we will have to see how much time I have to do that.

I wanted to print this photo in draft mode on paper to use as a pattern, but the app only prints photos as they are, with no way to change it to draft mode. I decided that if this photo was going to be full color, using a lot of my ink, I was going to print it on fabric too. 

I also printed the reverse on paper to use as a pattern for the fusible.

It looks great as it is, but I didn't look for shades of brown threads.  I hadn't been thinking of thread painting, but I will probably do some of that too. 

Plus there are parts I want to cover up. There is a line going through the top of her head that makes her look like an ornament. Her chin has this weird dark spot on the drawing that isn't in the photo. Plus I bought fabric for a photo collage, so I am going to collage over at least some of it.

15 minute days this week --7 out of 7
15 minute days this year -- 288 out of 353 days
Success rate  = 82%

Linked with:

15 Minutes to Stitch


Saturday, December 18, 2021

Quilt Shuffle

 As you know, I have been working on this October Halloween House. I was saving the story of this quilt until the reveal, but I will share it now as a reward to you for following my WIP posts.  


Once upon a time, I lived within walking distance of a quilt shop. I knew what a treasure that was. I took several classes there, and sent my daughter for a week of Quilt Camp. I bought some black and red fabric for a quilt when the box store wasn't selling black and red fabrics. Some miscellaneous tools and supplies now and then when I didn't feel like driving all the way to the box store. All of these purchases meant that I was able to become a member of their rewards club.

It meant that every time I went to that store, I could get a free fat quarter. Did I tell you I lived within walking distance? About 15-20 minutes each way. I got the bright idea that since I needed to exercise anyway, I could walk to the store every weekend and see all their wonderful displays. This was before I knew walking every day was a thing real people could do. It was like going to an art museum. I could also get my free fat quarter. I managed to get some exercise and get a lot of polka dotted fabric for  The Earth Laughs in Flowers. That quilt isn't nicknamed Daisy's Chickenpox for nothing. I did buy some things once in a while, but mostly I came back home with the fat quarter.

Then they moved even closer to me. They instituted a policy that you had to buy something to get the free fat quarter.

One day, for some reason, they decided that they needed to move away from cheapskates like me. They had a big moving sale, and I snagged the October quilt kit for $5. It comes with pre-printed windows, tulle for the fog and the ghost, and buttons for the pumpkins and spider. I decided not to use the buttons since I found a great backing fabric that includes pumpkins and spiders I can also use on the front.

I have started the quilting, but still have more to do. I had to put this quilt aside for an emergency holiday gift I am making.

I will tell you its story tomorrow.

Friday, December 17, 2021

Word for 2022


 Sometimes a new word for the year comes through a lot of soul searching and looking through lists on the internet. Other times, it comes and slaps you in the face and says, "choose me".  I think you can guess that my face is still smarting right now.

 I find that the Word of the Year that requires research gets easily forgotten in the year. The Word for 2021 is Respect, and I had to look on my blog several times this year to see what it was!

Sometimes when I make a post here, I worry that it might be boring. I worry that the weekly posts that say whether I stitched for 15 minutes a day may be tedious for my readers. I try to keep it interesting by including a photo or more, but I can't always show a WIP photo, especially with winter lighting. For my last post, I hadn't taken a lot of photos that week, so there wasn't much to share.

Then I had some books that were coming due to the library. One of them is Show Your Work! by Austin Keon  I've also been reading books about stories, like StoryWorthy by Matthew Dicks. Books take away from quilting time, but hopefully these books will make me make the blog more interesting next year.


The quote above is from Show Your Work!  I am not trying to gain more followers as this blog is more of a diary for me but I do want to make sure that I make it worth the time for the people who take the time to visit me . I do have a lot of interests and am continually seeking out more input. I read a lot of blogs and look at a lot of books.

 Here is a basic summary of the book. Some things I already follow. I share my work as I go along, without worrying about whether it is successful. I share things often, but don't have time to do that every day. 

I am going to work on telling good stories and teaching more. I want to share what inspires me, even when I don't immediately put it into practice. I can share more interesting things I have found and read while being careful not to infringe on anyone's copyright.

Can you think of any other ways I can make this blog more interesting?

Tuesday, December 14, 2021

2021: Week 50 of 15 Minutes to Stitch


When last we met in my last post, I told you that we had our family birthday gathering. It went well, and with a clean house, I rolled right into a meeting with the customers at work.  My desk faces the wall, so my zoom screen behind me shows the dining room table in the living room. It kept me from making any quilting messes, but I didn't have any time to make a mess either, so it all worked out.

 Lots of long hours. Although I didn't have a time zone change to deal with like others did, I did have to wake up earlier, and since we didn't travel, Zeus had to make a time change too. He is a stickler for the schedule so he does not like the schedule upended like that.

2021:  Week 49 and 50 of 15 Minutes to Stitch

I see I didn't post for Dec 5. Probably because I didn't do any quilting and was too busy getting ready to meet he customers. For the week ending Dec 12, we ended on Thursday, and instead of working on Friday, I decided to take a long weekend to recover. This gave me time to turn my living room into a sewing area again and to make more progress on my Halloween mini quilt. I didn't take a photo of it in the daylight, so it will be a nice reveal for you to see it all finished.

15 minute days this week --7 out of 14
15 minute days this year -- 281 out of 346 days
Success rate  = 81%

Linked with:

15 Minutes to Stitch

Sunday, November 28, 2021

2021: Week 48 of 15 Minutes to Stitch


2021:  Week 48 of 15 Minutes to Stitch


I spent my week getting ready for the gathering and having the gathering. We had a good time, even though some members of our family was not able to come.

I spent a couple of sessions to put the remainder of the pieces on the Halloween block. I plan to have one or more quilt finishes before the end of the year to offset the many quilts I have started.

15 minute days this week --2 out of 7
15 minute days this year -- 274 out of 332 days
Success rate  = 83%

Linked with:

15 Minutes to Stitch

Monday, November 22, 2021

2021: Week 47 of 15 Minutes to Stitch


2021:  Week 47 of 15 Minutes to Stitch

It's been busy at work while we gear up to meet with the customers. I am hosting the Thanksgiving gathering this year, so I have been spending time getting ready for them. This means that there hasn't been a lot of sewing, but I did have all those loose pieces I needed to press for the October house mini quilt. I decided that it would be better for me to go ahead and lay them out and press them down instead of leaving all these little fused pieces all loose. 

It took two sessions to put it together, and now I will put it away until after the gathering.

15 minute days this week --2 out of 7
15 minute days this year -- 272 out of 325 days
Success rate  = 84%

Linked with:

15 Minutes to Stitch


I took the photos when it was dark outside, but I wanted to keep a record of my progress.