2017: Back In Blogging Action


Hello, world!  It’s been a while. I’ve spent some time away because I had very limited time, and I prefer actual making to blogging about making.  Things have calmed down a bit and now I’m back for the 2017 Finish Along.


Since I’ve been away so long, I do not have many current pictures of projects, so this post will lack eye candy.  I’ve got some old pics I can use, otherwise, you’ll have to be patient and wait until my “Finished” posts for those pretty pictures.

Without further ado:  The 2017 FAL List!

  • Shabby Fabrics “Count On It” Wall Hanging Club
    This is my first foray into applique.  It may be a bit ambitious, but it’s so cute! I also think that the completed blocks will make a great Christmas present for my parents.  The pieces come laser cut and pre-fused, so all I have to do it lay the pieces out, iron to fuse, and machine stitch around the edges of the pieces.  Each moth they ship next month’s kit, so I should receive February, March, and April in time for the end of Q1.
  • The Lattice Quilt

    This quilt has been in the works a long time.  We were hot and heavy for a while, and it was blogged about two years ago with potential for a tutorial.  Seems I owe you guys.  But after some time apart (the single blocks got quite boring after a while), I finished the top!  Now it’s time for the quilting.

  • Autumn Spin Cyclelayout
    This one has also been kicking around a while.  After some time on the shelf, the its been sewn together and got borders and now it’s a completed top!  This one is going to get longarm quilted by me with a leaf pantograph of some kind.
  • Arcade Quilt
    When I saw the cover of the 2016 Winter edition of Quilts & More, I just had to make this quilt!  I’ve loved Sherri’s Dessert Bloom fabrics since she started posting pictures of her projects.  I grabbed 2 layer cakes and a charm pack fir santa to bring me for Christmas and I’ve already stitched all of the quarter-square triangles together.  Now I have to cut the sashing and piece the quilt.  I changed the dimensions a bit so that I’ll end up with a queen sized quilt– hopefully for my parents.
    Back in 2012, Quokka Quilts hosted the Quilt As You Go, Free- Motion, Quilt ALong— an effort to practice FMQ and put those practice blocks to work in an actual quilt.  Inspired by that style, I purchased a bunch of solids from connecting threads and sewed up slightly larger blocks for the task (bigger is always better, right?)  My blocks have 8 in squares sashed by 3 1/2 inch strips.  Once I quilt them they will all get cut down to about 12 inches finished and sewn together in the QAYG style.  This is a skill builder with no true deadline, it may not actually get finished for years, but a good burst of energy and inspiration is always around the corner
  • Ric Rac PaddyWack Rag Quilt
    This is a necessity.  I’ve been freezing through this New England Winter and I need a nice, thick, heavy quilt to keep me warm.  I found the perfect fabrics at my LQS and chopped them and the batting up over the weekend.  This could be finished within the week!

Other UFOs on the shelf:

  • Kim Diehl Scrappy Quilt
    This one has been on the shelf for a while and, honestly, I’m lacking the inspiration for it.  Currently, all the fabric has been cut, sewn and cut again, and about 30% of the fabrics have been sewn back together into their final form.  This one isn’t on a deadline.
  • Bargello Table Runner
    I purchased the fabrics for this one over the summer, but I haven’t started it yet.
  • Red and White Double Irish Chain
    This quilt was cut over the summer and the 25 patch squares are all assembled.  All that’s left is finishing the mostly white background blocks and assembling the top, but I’m a bit burned out on this one.
  • Blue and Green Crosshatch Quilt

    This one got started back in 2013 and I made steady progress on it… until I realized I did my math wrong and had only made half the blocks I intended.  This one has been abandoned for quite a while now.

  • Rainbow Stars Quilt
    This is the first quilt pattern I ever bought.  I eventually saved the money to get the ombre fabrics for the top, but was afraid to start it.  I have yet to feel the inspiration for this one.

A 2015 Finish for Gabe



My second grand-nephew, Gabriel Alphonse, was born Monday morning at 12:52 am.  He is 8 lb, 9 oz and 20.5 inches long.

And, right on time, I finished his blanket–giving it to my niece in the hospital Monday night.  It’s a pattern I’ve used before– Attic24’s Neat Ripple Pattern. I absolutely love this tutorial.  It’s so clear and concise.  It has TONS of pictures to help you through.  It makes for a perfect first crochet project.  For mine, I cast on 115 stitches to make 8 waves with a J hook.  Each wave is 3 rows tall.  This one is made of Caron Simply Soft in Dark Country Blue and Peacock Feather.  It finished at 33″ x 35″.


It’s the first finish of 2015!!!  Linking up with Crazy Mom Quilts Finish it up Friday.


I’m back for Q3 of the 2015 Finish Along


I’m back!  We’ve finally reached summer break– a time for family, sun, and crafts.  I’m so glad to have made it.

To celebrate my return, I’m participating in the 2015 Finish Along this quarter.  I’m looking to finish:

  1. “The Hooloovoo”– my niece’s wedding quilt
  2. My red and white lattice quilt
  3. “Sea of Rainbows”– my scrappy batik Arkansas Crossing quilt
  4. Quilting my “Starshine” quilt
  5. Quilting my “Rainbow Bricks” quilt
  6. Gabriel’s crochet baby blanket
  7. The skirts and tops I started last summer

I know that it seems quilt an ambitious list, but these are the months in which I get things accomplished.

2015 FAL at On the Windy Side

After a Long Break… A New Quilt


This quilt has been a long time coming.  When I first started quilting, I checked out a copy of Better Homes and Gardens’ Grandma’s Best Full-Size Quilt Patterns.  In it, I found a ton of traditional designs– most of which were a bit too “old” for me– including a red and white lattice quilt I simply had to have.  I loved the simplicity and I loved the lines.  The handquilting on the original made me want to curl right up under the quilt.  I just loved it.  Unfortunately, the pattern was not reprinted in the newest version of the book and it doesn’t seem that many others have shared my love for this quilt– a Google search yeilded no pictures of the original for you to oogle.

I, however, do.  I will be posting a tutorial for this simple quilt in a week or so, but until then, I’ll leave you with some pictures.  I cut, subcut, and pressed 8 yards of red and white fabric:

036 039

Then, I pieced and squared-up 84 (about half) of the blocks.


Eventually the quilt will look like a 70″ x 80″ version of this:

041 042

I am excited!  And linking up to:

WIP Wednesday: Skirts!


After working through a different version of Vogue’s V9007 skirt pattern, I decided to take the plunge.  I cut up three fabrics at a time and am now chain piecing them on my machine.  They’re so colorful and awesome!  I’m wicked excited.

V9007, fronts

Unfortunately, as it is 9 pm, we have to settle for poorly lit iPhone photos, but whatever.  They are better than none!  And, yes, that is Michael Miller’s Edges dots on the right.  I’m really hoping the pattern will do it justice.  We’ll just have to wait and see.

Hopefully, I will be able to add a few posts for TGIFF this week!  Wish me luck!!  For today, I am linking up with Lee of Freshly Pieced.

WIP Wednesday

A Finished Quilt Top (which still needs a name)


I did it!  I did it!  I did it!  I finally finished the wedding quilt top (only a week after the wedding, whatever… it will be either a first Christmas or an anniversary gift).


It’s a modified version of the Dissappearing Four-Patch from this tutorial.  I used 6 1/2 inch blocks to start and sliced 1 1/4 inches on each side of the seams.  I found some useful techniques while cutting these, so I may make my own tutorial later in the summer.  The biggest: buy a rotating cutting mat.  It makes everything so very much easier.

There are some special facbrics in this quilt.  In addition to a beautiful shot cotton and some great prints, there are two Spoonflower prints.  A lobster print for my niece, she has a HUGE thing for lobsters and seems to have quite the collection of random lobster things, and a rooster quilt for her husband, who it seems is equally fond of roosters.


A note on Spoonflower prints: they definitely print lighter than you expect.  It wasn’t bad, but I was expeting more of a navy for the lobsters and it came out more of a dusty royal blue.  Other than that, they are wonderful and just what I needed to make the quilt special.

There is a 3 inch (finished) border of grey surrounded by 6 inch piano keys.  I made the piano keys by strip piecing 2 1/2 inch strips into groups of 3-5, then cutting them down to 6 1/2 inches.  Then I just laid them out randomly and got a great, easy border.

Linking up to Thank Goodness It’s Finished Friday, which is in Australia today with Audrey at Glory Be Quilter and with Amanda Jean of Crazy Mom Quilts.

TGIFF                                                  Crazy Mom Quilts Friday

Work In Progress Wednesday: Bricklayers’ Edition


Well, it may not be quilty, but the project getting all the attention this week in my house has been in the backyard.  My dad and I have been working to build a patio.

New Patio, Day 4

We’ve been planning it for years and bought the material last summer, but all sorts of things seemed to get in the way.  This year, with no lifeguarding to waste my time, I’ve been able to spend plenty of time at my parents’ house.

Sunday, my niece and I laid the first four rounds of quarter bricks while my dad cut and cut on the wet saw.  Monday, my father spent most of the morning leveling and re-laying our work.  We spent the afternoon finishing the circle.  Tuesday we worked in the morning, leveling again, then laying the first round of full length bricks.  We started the second, but needed another new blade.  Today, we made it through the rest of the second row and on to the third.

New Patio, Day 4

There’s still a lot of work to go.  We will finish the circle with a third row of full bricks, put a field stone sitting wall on the outside edge, and fill the distance from the circle to the deck with brick–hopefully in a herringbone pattern.  We’re also building a small installation for the grill with some counter space on either side.

New Patio, Day 4

Wish me luck!  I’m linking up with Lee of Freshly Pieced.

WIP Wednesday

My First Quilt


I started quilting at the beginning of 2013.  I finished my Rainbow Bricks quilt top, using skills I’d developed while making dresses.  Then, I realized, I was going to have to quilt the beast and ground to a halt.  I did some research, read some books, tried to figure it all out, but I wasn’t sure where to go with the top.  Any ideas I had were so clearly above my skill level.

Instead, I decided to try a small piece.  I looked through the Moda Bakeshop, at the time, my only real reference and found a charm-friendly pattern for a nine patch.  After buying some cute fabric, I cut and pieced and created a little top.  I made my sandwich, just like the books said, basted with pins, and used a cheap walking foot with a guide to straight-line quilt the entire thing.  Here are the results:

My First Quilt

It may not be perfect– the seams don’t all match, the quilting lines are a bit off in some places, but I like it.  It’s cute and cheery.  I gave it to my mother for her birthday that March because she would never care that it’s not perfect.  For her, I made it, and that is all that matters.  I’m now working on a quilt top that is destined for my parents.  It is much more technical.  The quilting will be much more involved.  Most of all– it will be bigger! (Queen Sized!)

Q3 Finish Along List


Hello, there! Well, my Q1 FAL at The Littlest Thistle did not go so hot.  No finishes that quarter.  And I missed the Q2 link up entirely, which is fine as I didn’t finish anything then, either.  But now it’s summer!  Magical summer when I have so much time it’s nearly unbearable.  (I LOVE IT!)

So, in addition to a summer band and chorus, I will be hiking, trekking, redesigning curriculum, building a patio, building a sewing/quilting table, and finishing things!

Candidates for finishing this quarter are:

  1. Heather’s Wedding Quilt (still in need of a proper name)– the piecing is done, but I need to perfect my freemotion skills before I can quilt the giant.
  2. Christmas quilt– I was working on a big Christmas-colored star around the holidays, I may whip out that basket and start up again.
  3. My Parent’s pinwheel quilt– This one’s been on the back burner since last fall.  The biggest setback came when I realized that I had only made half as many blocks as I actually needed.  I should really pick it up again and get it done.
  4. My own Modern Totems quilt– I just adore M-R’s design.
  5. A scrap quilt with leftovers from the wedding quilt and/or the reject strip pieces from the first attempt.
  6. Rainbow Bricks– The quilting on this was put off in favor of new projects, but I want my own quilt!
  7. Starshine– Just needs quilting, but I have no ideas for it yet.
  8. The green and purple quilt kit I just purchsed
  9. Fall “Spin Cycle” quilt from connecting threads.  This one would be just in time for the new season.

Baby Stuff for the new grandniece/nephew

  1. Crocheted baby blanket (Also in need of a proper name)– This probably doesn’t count, but I’m working on it so it’s going here.  Right now it looks like I’ll need about 10 more rounds to finish (read: 11 hours).  Sounds like a great rainy day project with a bunch of movies.
  2. An elephant mobile–It will be made of felt and have various cheery fabrics for ears.  Totally a stitchy make, so it counts.


  1. Black speckled wrap dress– Pattern and fabric chosen.  Now to cut and sew.
  2. Purple knit dress– In the same state as above, although, additionally, I am terrified of sewing knits.
  3. Solid knit dress– the pattern is chosen, but I am waffling on the rest
  4. The two batik skirts– The purple one is not only set aside, It’s been cut for a year!  I just have to stitch it together!  The red-violet fabric is chosen, but not cut yet.
  5. The dream white knit top.  It is insanely needed to wear with the above skirts.
  6. Any of the 5 knit tops I bought fabric and a pattern for this morning.
  7. Two cream and print a-line skirts
  8. Yellow eyelet a-line skirt
  9. Grey and silver polka dot skirt
  10. Brown polka dot skirt
  11. Black paisley-ish skirt

Wow.  6 WIP’s and quite a few clothing plans.  I may have until October 6th to work on Q3, but with all my school stuff starting up in September, I’m really looking at a two-month timetable.  Just a bit over-enthusiastic, I guess.  Sorry this post is free of any eye-candy,my fabrics are spread between two houses at the moment.  I know that the list sounds vague, but I promise, I have actually committed to all of these items over the past few years and have fabric and patterns for all of them.  Wicked scary, right? I guess I had better get to work!!!

Another goal for this summer is to be more present here on the blog.  I’m thinking of joining some linky’s like WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.



Sometimes, it just doesn’t work out.


After a week of deliberation, and quite a few pattern purchases, I thought I had settled on a pattern.  I bought some extra fabrics and got to it.  After a few test blocks, I thought I was ready.  I started to make strip sets–cutting into some very precious fabrics and sewing up a storm.

Strip sets for days

And then I cut into them to make the blocks.

Quilty Things

And all was well.  But, on block number 6 of …lots, I started to think that I didn’t like it.  So I panicked, looked for new patterns, and eventually resigned myself to the idea that I may have no idea what I’m doing.

But now, I have found a new pattern.  I’m going to give the disappearing four patch a try.  Let’s hope it treats me better.