Sunday, September 20, 2020

Scrappy Mountain Majesties Southwest Version

I'm back! More baby quilts are needed, so I finished up all the Scrappy Mountain Majesties blocks last weekend. They go together very quickly and have many setting options. This is what I decided on and sewed them all together yesterday. I love it! I think it would be cool to make a bed-sized version. It is 45 x 46 inches.

My friend, who I am making this for, now lives in Alaska, so I want a cozy minky backing. I did a curbside pick up at Joann's last night of a yellow minky. As soon as I got back from my pick up, I got a text that my friend's grandson had arrived.
I thought about just making another Name Quilt, but this is for one of my closer friends and I want to make her grandson a Bjorn Bear Quilt. The nursery is in sage--I went to Joann's first thing this morning and picked up this Kona. It is tarragon--there were not many choices, but this was a swatch I had considered. I went ahead and grabbed a gray minky for the backing. I am totally out of navy embroidery floss, so I grabbed a skein of it and some needles. This was my first time in Joann's since February. Everyone had masks on which is a rarity in our town. At the checkout stand, they had the new Quilt Sampler magazine--score!
My mom and dad got me The Bonnie & Camille Quilt Bee book as part of my birthday present and it arrived. I want to get it spiral bound. I am planning on ordering the Shine On fabric that is featured in the book and I will probably mix in some more of from my B&C collection.

Well, I am off to start cutting out bears!
Have a great week!

Sunday, September 13, 2020

Summer Sewing that Wasn't

Hello Quilter Friends! It is not your imagination--I have not posted all summer because there really was not a lot of sewing going on all summer. I lost my mojo and really did not focus on much. I don't handle uncertainty very well and there was too much of that with how my teaching was going to be this fall. My summer wasn't totally wasted because I did take a few professional courses and read a bunch of middle grade books.

I finally got word that I would be teaching all year virtually. My position is unique because I work at three elementary schools with students in grades 3-5 and see about 60+ kids a week. This would be much too risky for spreading COVID. I also petitioned to work from home and that was granted one day before I was due to report for work! My sewing room has been transformed into my virtual classroom. My cutting table is a great raised desk and some quilts came down and a whiteboard and bulletin board were put up. I bought a tall stool and brought some supplies home from my classroom. Most of my students are attending school in person and will Zoom with me weekly and work on my enrichment activities in their regular classes--it is not ideal, but I feel it is the safest option. Our district has already had a couple of outbreaks and quarantines.

The one quilt I started this summer was this baby quilt. A coworker had a baby back in June and I started to work on it immediately, but did not finish it up until this week. The pattern is from Lori Holt's book, Spelling Bee, and is called the "Name Quilt." I made mine a little bigger and after washing it measures approximately 44" x 49" a good crib size.
Lori does not have any woodland animal blocks, so I bought the pattern for this Raccoon block on Etsy from BurlapBlossomPattern--it was $2.50 and that is all I spent on this quilt. All the fabrics, including the backing, binding, and the batting were from my stash.
I highly recommend making this design if you need a quick baby quilt and it is so easy to personalize it.
This backing fabric is an old Moda from my stash. I had to do some piecing to make it big enough. We are still not shopping in person, so making do with what I have on hand or can order online is a priority for me. Finishing this quilt and the need for some other baby quilts has brought my sewing mojo back.
I started cutting and sewing all the blocks for another baby quilt. They are having a girl and going for a desert/southwest look even though they recently moved to Alaska. I am using Bonnie Hunter's free pattern:
I am not sure on the setting, but I will play around with it--the blocks are very versatile. I am making 48 blocks and can make more if needed. I like baby quilts to be big!
I started this cross stitch in July it is "Stitchville" from Thimbleblossoms. There is a stitch along for it this month, so I plan on working on it while watching football today for Slow Sunday Stitching:
I did bind a bunch of quilts for Rachel this summer and she quilted this one for me. It is my Ombre Gems Quilt, I plan to gift it to a friend. We had a few cold and rainy days earlier this week and that put me in the mood for fall--pumpkin spice, cozy pajamas, casseroles, and football!

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Hearts At Home Quilt Finish!

 Hello! I officially started my summer vacation on Thursday and I have lost my quilting mojo. Pretty much the only thing I have been doing is a little binding for Rachel. She called me yesterday evening to let me know that she was done quilting this beauty. This is "Hearts At Home"--the pattern is designed by Chelsi Stratton and I used a mix of scraps from my stash. It could be a very fast design if you used a couple of jelly rolls!
 This is a charity quilt for a foster child in a residential facility. You can find out more information on Instagram @quiltforachild. Gwen has organized this charity in the last few months and I have been wanting to donate. When I saw an 11 year old, girly girl who loves pink, red, and gray--I signed right up! My favorite age group to work with are fifth graders, which is where Jalyn falls. I can't imagine how tough this lockdown would be for a foster child not being able to go to school right now and get out...
 It is 61x76 inches after washing--pretty good for a twin sized bed. I used a Bonnie & Camille floral from their Smitten line for the backing along with a strip of red with with polka dots (left over from another quilt backing) for the label strip. Rachel quilted it with a sweet flower and swirl pattern. She just knows what a quilt needs to highlight the pattern!
I embroidered the label on an extra block--we are not supposed to include our names or towns. I am encouraged to write a note to include with my first name and state only. It is nice to make something for a deserving child in this uncertain time--it felt good to have a purpose and a focus. I know Gwen has trouble finding quilters for the teenage boys' quilts, so maybe that will be my next donation!

Stay healthy everyone!

Sunday, May 3, 2020

Hearts At Home Top

 Happy Sunday! I just finished sewing these blocks together and rushed outside to get a picture. This design is Hearts At Home by Chelsi Stratton. I made five extra blocks to make it longer. Right now it measures about 68 x 82 inches--a good size for twin bed. This is a charity quilt being gifted to an 11 year old girl in foster care. She is described as a girly girl who likes pink, red, and gray. I dug into my scrap bins and used some Bonnie & Camille strips as well as other blenders. 
I am using one of the extra blocks as label and it will be pieced into the backing to make it plenty long enough for the longarm. I plan on embroidering the label in red this evening for Slow Sunday Stitching

I ordered a Bonnie & Camille pink with red flowers for the backing this morning. I am going to set the label block in a red strip and I am thinking red binding. The pattern does not show an outer border and think a bright red binding will be a nice frame. Rachel is planning on quilting it with flowers, so I am sure it will be stunning. I can't wait for the backing to arrive!

If you are interested in making a twin sized quilt for a foster child, check out @quiltforachild on Instagram. It feels good to do charitable sewing during this time. Have a great week!

Saturday, April 25, 2020

Summerville Quilt Finish

Hello! I picked this beauty up from Rachel, my longarmer/friend's porch last Saturday. It was in a black garbage and remained in my car for quarantine until Wednesday--when I finally got see it. This is Summerville in Vintage Picnic fabric by Bonnie & Camille. My sister gifted me this kit a couple of years ago.
Rachel did her magic and picked a chubby flower with meandering vines and leaves. She is a newer longarmer and has a great eye for patterns fitting quilts--I have her make the decisions and I have not been disappointed yet! She is really talented and I think it is perfect!!!
I have not washed it yet, but I folded it up and put it in my glass display case. I will know when it will find its home or when it will get used at my own house.
Last Sunday, I signed up to make a quilt for a foster child through @quiltforachild on Instagram. I selected an 11 year old girl who likes pink, red, and gray. She is described as a "girly girl." I immediately thought of this pattern Hearts at Home by Chelsi Stratton--so I bought it and started on the heart centers--all of them are pink.
 I am going to make it with 20 blocks instead of 16, so it is long enough for a twin bed. I am using pink, red, gray, and turquoise. Rachel is already mulling quilting designs--she told me flowers for sure. 
 The gray blocks are done and I am working on the turquoise ones now. Ideally, the quilt needs to be done in 4-6 weeks. I am making it my priority because I love sharing quilty hugs especially with a deserving child.
This stunner is one of Rachel's. She longarms for me and I hand bind for her. We both love trading--binding is so relaxing for me and she is still exploring on her longarm. She quilted this one with a pink variegated thread and these cheerful flowers. It is a big one, so it will take a little time to bind. I plan on working on it for Slow Sunday Stitching:
How is everyone holding up? I coped with a little retail therapy this week. My hubby called it "frivolous," but I think it was bargain priced necessities. I have been eying these light weight, cozy sweatshirts from Target for awhile and they went on clearance. I needed the post-it pads for work and mug cakes are a favorite sweet because they are single servings. See necessities! Hang in there and stay healthy!

Saturday, April 18, 2020

Quarantine Sewing

Hi friends! I am sorry for being MIA--I have been working, sewing, cooking, and of course staying home. This whole situation is surreal, but we are making it work. First, I have to say how thankful I am that our daughter is home from college. She and my hubby pretty much drove straight through from Syracuse to Montrose in 29 hours. They arrived here on 3/16. Prior to being sent home, she had been ill at school--fever, aches, chills, cough, etc. We are pretty sure she had Covid-19, but neither my hubby or I have any symptoms. So either we are asymptomatic or she was no longer contagious, not likely. Several of her friends have tested positive since they have been home, so it is pretty likely she had it too...She has recovered and is working on finishing up her classes online. Her graduation ceremony has been rescheduled for May 2021 and we expect her job to be delayed.

Our school district has cancelled in person learning for the rest of the year and I am busy teaching distance learning. I am grateful that I already used a lot of digital platforms with my students before this, so it has been easier on all of us. I love checking in with them through Zoom meetings weekly--for the most part we are sticking to our regular schedule. I am actually working about the same amount as usual--it is just different not seeing the kids in person. 

I have used this time to put all my blocks from my Sunday Best Quilts Sampler. I of course used Bonnie & Camille scraps. I am trying to decide if I should add a white outer border like Sheri did or leave it as is like Corey did. What are your thoughts? I just ordered a wide backing that is big enough for either size...
 I also made all 64 blocks for Summer on the Porch in Boundless Garden Party fabric. I got this kit for Valentine's Day from Blueprint (they are closed during this time, but keep this one in your want to make queue and I want to use this queen sized quilt on our bed this summer. I just ordered a solid looking turquoise for the backing. My goal this week is to sew it together, so it looks like this (below)!
Thanks Myra for the beautiful fabric and design!
Do you remember this finish? This was Clementine that was a quilt along with Fat Quarter Shop in 2018. I had the privilege of making one. My daughter and I are gifting it to one of her besties moms. Fran (the mom) is a doctor in Kingston, New York and has been extremely helpful to my daughter while she was at college. She has been battling the virus that she got while treating patients--a true hero. She was released from the hospital this morning, so we are sending this as a quilty hug for all her kindness and her recovery. I hope she enjoys snuggling under this cheerful quilt as she heals.
I didn't get to make a last care package to send to my daughter at school, but I did get to put together an Easter basket.  It was harder just picking out things online, I missed wandering through Target and Marshalls.  I still put some fun self-care items together: bath bombs, French lavender lotion & shower gel, face masks, hair masks, chai k-cups, a water bottle, and Reeses' eggs. She loved it and likes being home with me cooking, her dad cleaning, and our dogs to cuddle with.

During one of my Zoom meetings this week, a kiddo asked me if I had been to the local food pantry yet. I said no and she told me they had been twice. I am heartbroken that my kids are suffering during this time. I had a grocery gift card sent to their home anonymously and may need to send more to their family and others before this is over. Take care of each other and stay healthy!


Sunday, March 15, 2020

Fresh As A Daisy Finish

 We had Friday off from school--hooray! We did not get MLK Day or President's Day, so we were "teacher tired" and desperate for a three day weekend. I hit Target, the bank, and the grocery store early and got us stocked up. My freezer was already pretty full because I buy meat when it is marked down and I also buy in 20 one-pound increments of ground beef from a local processor. My daughter is being sent home from college, so I needed to get some things for her too. We can probably go for a month, but milk will run out and choices will get slim. I went to the liquor store on the way home on Thursday--priorities right?

I even found excellent respiratory masks at Target for my hubby and daughter. They are traveling home from her college, so masks and wipes were needed.  It is doubtful that there will be a graduation for her class in May. I am so sad for them--I have fond memories of my own college graduation. The good thing is she has her dream job--she has been interviewing since October and had to do 11 separate interviews and several writing tests. She is working for a small firm in NYC that consults with companies about mergers and acquisitions. She is scheduled to start in July, so it will be nice to have some time with her before she leaves our nest for good--I guess it is a good thing I have not taken over her room as a bigger sewing room yet!

Friday night, we got notification that our school district is closed from now through April 12th. Our spring break was scheduled for the week of April 6th, so now we have a whole month off.  We were told to expect communications from the district by Wednesday about our responsibilities during this time. We were also informed on Thursday that we would be paid and not have to make up the days, so I hope that holds true. If we go to online learning, I am not too worried as I already use Google Classroom with my groups and have great wifi to work from home--most of my students have access to electronic devices. I just wish I could have sent a bunch of books home with my kids to keep them busy reading for the month. I will get lots of reading time myself--got to love checking out books on my Kindle from the public library! After seeing what is happening in Italy, I support the decision to cancel school and wonder if it may be even longer!

I used Friday and Saturday to pin and quilt this Fresh As A Daisy baby quilt. The back is lavender minky. It has not been washed yet. I adjusted the pattern to offset my daisies slightly and it measures 49" x 51". Of course, I used my go to wavy stitch and quilted it grid style every two inches and bound it by machine. I like it so much--I am tempted to make a larger one with an aqua background and yellow flower centers to keep. It is such a cheerful design and could be rather inexpensive if I bought the Kona solids during a 60% off sale at Joann's...So many projects temptations!
Sunnyside was quilted last weekend, but I am hand binding it.
I will get some photos of it completed soon. I have one more baby quilt to make for a baby due in June, then a break until September. I am still working on my Farm Girl Vintage 2 and need to add borders on a few tops and prep backings. I am trying to restrain myself from starting a new project, but with a month off and plenty of possibilities in the closet my resolve may not last.

I am a total homebody and will make the most this surreal time at home quilting, reading, and enjoying my family once they arrive back from NY hopefully tomorrow night. Please stay home and exercise social distancing practices--it will help. There are too many vulnerable people in our communities, to continue on with life as we know it. Stay healthy and make a quilt!