"Make what you want to make, and make it the way you want to make it." Gwen Marston

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Wrapping up January

January has been a very productive month in my sewing room.  Partly because of my new white Featherweight.  I started piecing and just couldn't stop!! 

This past week was spent finishing the place mats for Meals on Wheels that I started last week.  I ended up with 14 in total.  Thirteen of them are very simple, with some nice fabric that was given to me last week. 

Number 14 was made from two leftover churn dash blocks which were made from leftover fabric from another project.  I should mention that all the place mats are rectangular, but the photos are taken from a bad angle.
The two quilts from this fabric are now quilted and bound, and will be handed off to charities next month.

The larger one was quilted with a simple all-over design, and on the smaller one I quilted in the ditch around each churn dash.  

This little guy was quilted and bound yesterday.  I started it at retreat back in November.  It's only about 12" square, so the quilting and binding didn't take long!

For the UFO Challenge for our small group, we don't actually have to FINISH a project,  but list some progress that we'd like to make.  This month we had to do our #2 item, which for me was to make 12 Farmers Wife blocks.  I started this quilt back in about 2012? with another blogger, and as often happens, we didn't make it very far.  I have a real penchant for starting sampler quilts and not following through.  
There are now 24 blocks made, and I'm not sure how far I'll go with this.  I might just make enough blocks to make a small quilt, or I might get ambitious and make all of the blocks.  My hope is that now that I've started again, I'll continue to make blocks.  Along with my older BOM's, maybe I'll just make blocks this year, and not worry about too many finishes for a few months.  

Retreat is coming up in about 3 weeks, and I've got my projects planned and prepped.  I usually start NEW things at retreat, but not this time!  Okay, well maybe one new start.  But it's from leftover fabric from another quilt, so does that count?

Wrapping up blue for RSC this week also.  I made two blocks for my pile, and some scraps of fabric came my way, and there may be enough new blues to make one more block tomorrow!

According to our local newspaper, the ice jam on the creek "melted peacefully away on Tuesday".  Of course I didn't go that day, so when I drove out there on Wednesday, I got a few pictures of a very muddy creek with log jams instead of ice jams!  The ice couldn't stand up to three days with temperatures near 60 degrees and then nearly an inch and a half of rain.
Monday afternoon

Wednesday afternoon

Happy Stitching!!!!       Sunny

Sunday, January 21, 2018


It looks like alphabet soup!  Do they still make that?  I remember eating it as a child, but didn't really care for it.

Friday night found me sewing along with the FNSI girls around the world.  If you click on the link, you can go see what others were working on.  You might get inspiration for a new project?  I made three little name badges.

I made one of these a couple of years ago to hang on my sewing machine while at retreat.  It replaced a post-it note that someone had slapped on the back of my machine, with my name misspelled.   Then I decided to make a few for friends, and now I've probably made about 45 or 50.  Earlier in the week, I had made 10, then ran across a note for 3 others that I had forgotten about.  I hope I'm done now.  My original one had binding on it, but that doesn't happen any more!

I made another blue block for RSC18.  I'm combining this with another project, and will be making one block every week this year. 
Vacation is coming up soon, so I'm trying to work ahead on as many projects as I can.  In my effort to complete two old BOM's, I will be making at least one block each month, much like they should have been several years ago.  I'm hoping that I'll actually be done long before the end of the year, but we'll see how that goes.
January and February American Beauty:
This quilt is made using Marti Michell templates, which terrified me when I attempted it earlier.  Now I know the secret, and it's much more enjoyable.

January and February Fundamentals:
I don't know why I didn't make this one.  There are four blocks per month, and it starts out very simple and gets progressively more intricate. 

I was given some fabric last week and much of it was not to my liking, but I thought it would make great place mats for Meals on Wheels.  Most of today was spent cutting tops, backs, and batting.  Three small quilts were also basted, and some hand stitching happened.  Quilting happening in the next day or two!!

Happy Stitching......Sunny

As of Saturday afternoon,, the ice jam is still holding, and is very very very slowly melting.  The risk of flooding is now deemed to be minimal, as the water level has been dropping.  I'll probably go check it one more time on Monday, and then resume my regular life.  LOL!

Sunday, January 14, 2018

RSC18 and More ice!

I think I may have overextended myself again this year with all the projects I signed up for!  But they're fun, and I'll do my best to keep up.

First up, and easiest is my weekly block for RSC18, where we're working with light blue this month.  Pop on over to see what everyone else is up to this year.  There is a link-up post every Saturday, and anyone can join in at any time!  I'm combining this with another project doing one block each week, so I'll end up with at least 50 blocks by the end of the year.

I've also decided to make the mystery quilt by Kathleen Tracy.  The first block is an applique flower pot, and is just adorable.  I couldn't pass up this one.

Back in approximately 2010 and 2011, I signed up for BOM's at my local quilt shop.  One used specialty templates that I had no idea how to use, so each month the kit was placed in a box and hidden away.  I don't remember why I didn't do the second one, because it was pretty easy.  Maybe I felt guilty because I hadn't done the other?  I don't know. Anyway, I've decided that I'm going to make both of these quilts this year.  And I officially have the January blocks done for both of them!  I'll wait to share until I have a few more finished.  Now that I've started, I hope to do more than one a month, and have finished tops before the end of the year. 

We got a call today from a friend who had just crossed a nearby creek in which the ice was breaking up and flowing.  She  told us to grab our cameras and get down there, so we did!  It was amazing to see.  Sadly, we just got a News Flash that it's causing flooding, and some people should be prepared to evacuate.  After what we saw today, I'm not surprised.  Ice can be so beautiful but so dangerous.  We talked to several people who live near the creek, and they don't remember seeing anything like this in the last 50 years!

This slab was about " thick!

The water was no longer flowing here, and this it probably near where the flooding is now.
This is the ice jam that is causing the flooding.

All ice in the middle ground
In other news, I've counted my UFO's as of January 1st, and there were 12.  I've started a few new projects since then, and there are 35-40 more projects that I want to make, and have the fabric for.  I think the time has come to stop buying fabric.  I'll let you know how that works out!!  LOL!

Happy Stitching.....Sunny
Some more ice for my friends down under, who are suffering from sweltering heat

Saturday, January 6, 2018

FNWF and More

Last night was FNWF, and I stitched along with friends all around the world.  Most of the evening was spent with this little stitchery.  It will be part of a larger wall hanging in the near future.

Earlier in the day, I spent a few hours putting together some blocks that I made in the fall, before vacation.  I now have a child's quilt, a baby quilt, and a place mat.  Well, I will when they're quilted, which will be soon, I promise!

These were all made from scraps from a previous project.  The directions had called for fat eighths, but I had to buy fat quarters, so there was a lot of leftover fabric.  The background fabric, and the backing are also leftover from previous projects, so these were all free!

I have been debating over several new  online projects for the year, and finally decided that I could combine two of them!  Darlene, from A Needle Pulling Thread Quilt Shop, has challenged us to make a block every week of the year, from a simple checkerboard pattern.  I've decided to accept the challenge, and combine it with the RSC18 challenge, so I'll be making my weekly blocks using the assigned RSC color each month.  This month is light blue.  This block is pretty simple to make, and I might just make more than one each week!  Who knows.

We are experiencing some extremely cold weather, so I've had plenty of time to stay indoors and play with my fabric.  Earlier in the week, before the temperatures got quite so extreme, I went for a walk to see the frozen Potomac River.  We don't usually have extended periods of temperatures  cold enough to freeze the river, so it was interesting!

No kayaking under this bridge for awhile!

They brought in a backhoe to break a section of ice so crazy people could jump in the river for the Polar Bear Plunge on January 1st.  It's an annual fund raiser that draws quite a crowd.

Snow angel on the canal

Until it warms up, you can find me in my sewing room!      Sunny

Monday, January 1, 2018

December OPAM

Surprise!  I'm back again.  I went outside today to brave the cold for this picture.  It has been unusually cold the past few days, and there doesn't seem to be a warm-up in the near future.  This quilt was from the Class I took at our Cape Cod retreat back in late September.  It's called Atlantic Flyway, and features Deb Tucker's flying geese ruler.  My colors are similar to those shown on the pattern sample, but it was fun to see all the other color combos that classmates chose.

I also whipped up a little cover for my new Featherweight.  Now I just need to clear some shelf space for her to sit when I'm not sewing on her.

And of course I needed to make a spool thread doily for her as well.

Which brings us to my word for the year.  Challenge.  It's not easy to see, but there is a buttonhole on this doily.  I don't know if I've ever made a buttonhole before, but If I have, it would have been in Junior High Home Ec class.  I won't challenge you with the math, but that was a very, very, very long time ago.  I had to decide between the challenge of figuring it out and just doing it, or finding someone to do it for me.  Guess what:  making buttonholes is quite easy.  But you all probably knew that. 

I plan to challenge myself in other ways this year as well.  I'm going to learn some new quilting techniques, improve my photography skills, and address some health/exercise challenges.  And I won't back down from the challenge if I need to make a buttonhole!

How about you?  Have you chosen a Word for 2018?        Sunny