Monday, July 30, 2012

July Finish

This is my lone finish for July--a strippy I wanted to use for some machine quilting practice. Because the focus fabric in the quilt was bugs, I thought it would be cute to use a pantograph with bugs, and I found this one with dragonflies at the Willow Leaf site. I was a little worried about trying to stitch the dragonfly head and those tight curves between the wings, but it turned out just fine. Doing a pantograph is a little like riding a bike--it doesn't take long to get back into the swing of it.

I must have bought ten yards of this bug fabric--found it at an auction held by a local quilt chapter a few years back. I've already used some of it to make a couple of strippies that have probably showed up on the blog before. I have another one on the frame now, and I think I may have about four more cut out and ready to sew. I have a different chunk of bug fabric with a black background that I probably bought at the same auction that's already been made up into a couple of strippies. I'll be glad when I've used up all the bug fabric.

Monday Sew Day

Sandy came over about 9:30 this morning, but I didn't get any serious sewing done until after the girls left. Sandy and I spent most of the morning looking at quilt show photos since she didn't really get a chance to see much of the show. Next thing we knew, it was nearly lunchtime, and Barb showed up. The girls didn't stay long after lunch, and I was left to my own devices for the rest of the afternoon.

I wanted to work on my raffle quilt because I have a September deadline, and I didn't get much done last week because of the quilt show. So this afternoon, I finished up the last of the 150 four-patch units I need for the quilt. Doesn't look like 150 units in the photo, does it? 82 of those were then used to make the units in the second photo. The remaining four patches will made up into other blocks.

I'm a little tired of black and white right now, so I might work on some nine patches tomorrow that have some color in them. I need 18 of them for my quilt.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Hexie #37

I finished the last three seams on this hexagon block this evening, and I've got the next one all ready to start stitching tomorrow. I'm glad I dug out these blocks because I really do enjoy hand piecing.

This weekend was the annual quilt show hosted by the Pine Tree Quilters Guild for the state of Maine. Over 600 quilts, 40 vendors, special exhibits, lectures and demos, and of course, classes. I took classes on Friday morning and all day Saturday and have photos to share, plus some from the quilt show, and I'll upload those over the next few days.

After two full days at the quilt show, I was tired and my legs and back just ached. Hubby and I had planned to go to Card's Berry Farm Sunday afternoon to pick blueberries. I thought I might be too tired, but we went anyway and had a fun afternoon, even though we got caught in a downpour just as we finished picking and before we could get back to the car. These are high bush blueberries, which I prefer over the Maine wild blueberries, and we picked and froze about four quarts. We try to get out to pick blueberries at least once over the summer, and we always go to Rocky Ridge Apple Farm right down the road afterwards for a Rocky Reuben. It's a sandwich made with corned beef and homemade cole slaw and served on a kaiser roll, and it is THE best reuben we've ever had. A bottle of root beer and a freshly-made strawberry turnover topped it off.

Tomorrow I have friends who come over every Monday to sew with me, so quilting weekend continues for one more day.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Hexie #36

It's been nearly two years since I worked on my hexagon blocks, so it was high time to get back to them. I don't know why they ever fell by the wayside because I really like handpiecing. I also don't know what made me think of them, but I'm glad I dug them out again. Actually I do. I wanted to use those civil war reproduction fabrics in another project, but I didn't want to shortchange myself, so if I just get the blocks done, that will free up the fabric. In the short term, guess I'll have to buy more civil war repros. Good rationalization, huh?

The original quilt that started it all required 82 full-size blocks plus some half-sized blocks for the edges, and for now I'll stick to that plan.   Hexie #35 was the last one I finished in August 2010, so I have quite a ways to go. You can see all the other hexagon blocks I've made, plus the original quilt, if you click on the "Hexagons" label in the sidebar.

My goal at the time was to complete one hexagon block a week, and that worked reasonably well, so I'll stay with it. I finished this hexagon Sunday night, so it was for last week. I only have a few seams left to stitch to finish the one for this week.

Socks for June and July

It's been a busy summer, and I haven't really done much knitting, but I did get socks done for the months of June and July. I actually should have had these finished by the end of May, but.... The yarn is by Regia, one of my favorites.

I've started on my sister-in-law's knee socks now but won't finish them for a while. She's taller than I am and needs an 18-inch leg. She and my brother come up to Maine just about every year, and this year they'll be up in September or October. My goal is to have them finished for her by then.
I'm using Stroll yarn by KnitPicks for this pair, and I like that yarn a lot too.

I've been in such a sewing mood this summer, hellbent on finishing some UFOs. I've finished 10 tops since the beginning of June. All but three are Mary Johnson's little strippies I like to make to practice machine quilting, and you'll see all the quilts eventually in other posts. I've also been working on a Block of the Month, and I dug out my hexagon blocks from a couple years back and started working on those again too. Yes, Purple Pam, I was one of the ones doing hexies. :)

Today, after a little grocery shopping, I'm working on a quilt designed by Judy Martin that I intend to donate as a raffle quilt. Apparently some of the gals my husband works with belong to a local scrapbooking club, and one of their members had a daughter that passed away from cancer several years ago. For the last three years, the group has conducted an annual fundraiser in support of the efforts of a cancer center here in Maine. I donated a queen-sized quilt for a different raffle in March, so I wasn't too surprised when hubby came home and hinted about donating another. This is a very simple quilt, all squares, but I find it appealing enough to want to make one to keep. Photos later.