Friday, September 18, 2009

Friday, September 18

Hello everyone! All is well here in Billye-land -- work is slow (yay, today, since I'm really not into it!) and I've not posted photos of some work I've done lately, so let me see if I can throw some up here.

Let's see, I was working on Twisted Sister and the log cabin quilt last I posted. Here's a photo of Twisted Sister (I've since changed the bottom two cornerstones since although I did them that way on purpose, they ended up looking stupid).
This is a Christmas/birthday/whatever gift for friend Lynn. She's seen the photo and loves it. Time now to get it sandwiched, basted and quilted.

So the other quilt was a log cabin -- as I think I mentioned in an earlier post, I'd never done an Eleanor Burns pattern, so I enjoyed it thoroughly. It was so easy! Only thing is, it makes a big quilt, so I'm going to have to do the QAYG method on this one -- I've assembled the blocks and made the back . . just need to quilt it.

I don't think I ever posted my completed bargello. Well, it didn't turn out quite like I planned, and the photo is lousy -- but it was too skinny and I wasn't in the mood to add to it, so, I cut it in half and bound it and hung it up on the wall. Artist's license, right? LOL

And my latest craze is crazy quilting. I've done 3 blocks. Ok, that's not true. I started the first two blocks, and they didn't even sort of lay flat, so I went back to the drawing board and figured out if I did the blocks like a paper pieced block, then I'd have a better shot at getting it flat. So I did that, and sure enough, it worked better. I've been doing some collecting of threads, lace, beads, etc. and have been given yarns and various other trinkets to add to my CQ by several friends (thanks to all of you!). The block is a bit further along now than this photo, but here's where it was a few days ago:

I've outlined the rose (bottom left) in pink and begun satin stitching it. The heart in the middle is done (thanks Barb for teaching me those French knots!!!). Some of the yarn that Diane gave me is on the line between the heart and the block print, and the block print now has "X's" across all the blocks. I'll satin stitch the hummingbird eventually. I did something in the top right corner, but for the life of me I can't remember what it is right now!

Retreat is coming very quickly, and I've tried to pull fabrics and kits for it so that I don't take everything I own! I plan to get quite a few Christmas gifts finished at Retreat, and am taking smaller projects than quilts, except for one, my City Lights. Also, at some point my X-Block needs it's borders finished and to be quilted . . . the borders just don't make me happy right now, so I'm thinking on them. I hate for things to end up as UFOs, but you know how that goes!

I'll be taking a class on art quilts at Retreat and am looking forward to utilizing the technique in my own art quilts. And sometime in mid-October or early November my Shakespeare in the Park should be coming home!!! YAY!!! I'm sure Barb will have it quilted beautifully and I can't wait to finish it up and put it on my bed. The pillow shams have been done for some time now.

I am also on the lookout for an old Singer 301. I can't afford the Janome 6600 that I want, but I've been doing some research and that old Singer 301 has the largest harp and is probably the most dependable machine that's ever been made. I'm going to be checking thrift stores/garage sales, etc. Hopefully I'll find one for next to nothing, because people think they're old so they're junk. NOT!!

All else is good. Everyone have a great day!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Sunday retreat progress

Sorry! No photos to post -- way too tired! Yesterday morning I finished putting the borders on the Eleanor Burns log cabin quilt and making the backing. Then I went to run errands with a friend and came home 6 hours later exhausted! I put stuff away and then did some work on my CQ block, but really, not much. Spent most of the evening vegetating and packing for today -- and a super hot bath, which is next on the agenda for tonight as well -- I'm tired.!

So today was sewing with Diane and Barb at Barb's house. What a great day! I learned how to make Twisted Sister blocks and Barb showed us how she makes baskets and rugs with the toothbrush technique -- -I need to get me one of those! We let Barb get by with not making a Twisted Sister because she has to have the basket made for a class she's teaching. . . Diane's fabric choices, as always, were gorgeous, and my blocks ain't too shabby either.

Stopped at my Mom's on the way home, took her to the bank and then to the store. Made dinner, eating it now and am beat, beat, beat. I was planning on painting my bedroom tomorrow, but unless I make a miraculous recovery, I'm thinking tomorrow is going to be a sewing/relaxing day. Sewing relaxes me -- does it relax you? Painting -- uhhhh. . . not so much!

Hope everyone is enjoying this virtual retreat - I know I am!! Thanks for hosting, Susan!


Saturday, September 5, 2009

Labor Day Virtual Retreat

Mine started last night. Well, the quilt started last week, but my retreat started last night. Here's a (bad) photo of the quilt I'm working on. Since this photo I've assembled the blocks 3 rows and then 3 rows. My plan is to put a burgundy 3" border (unless when I audition it that seems to dark, then one of the lighter darks as border), and do QAYG with the burgundy as backing (if I have enough). As much as I love FMQ, I'm thinking straight lines. Any ideas anyone? And can you believe I'd never done an Eleanor Burns pattern? Duh. SO EASY!! I wish . . . well I wish I'd gotten one of her books a lot earlier, but then perhaps I wouldn't have tried the more difficult things I've done, like my Shakespeare in the Park or Bonnie Hunter's Double Delight (which I absolutely adore!).

Today will be spent doing some housework and putting the borders on this log cabin - if the weather stays nice taking my dog to the park this evening. . . and hanging with a friend for a few hours this morning. Tomorrow I go to my friend Barb's with another friend Diane for a long-planned Twisted Sister sew day. That quilt will be for my friend, Lynn, for her birthday (passed already) and Christmas present. I chose colors I thought she'd like -- then have spoken to her and, uh, maybe not so much. Still, I'll make it and if she doesn't like it, I'll make her something else.

I also had an epipheny last night. Repurpose, reuse, right? Well, I've been wanting a quilt rack. I don't have much space, but I never use my front door so I thought one somewhat like a ladder to lean up against the door. Then I realized that I HAVE a ladder that I really don't have a place to store . . it's metal, not exactly what I had in mind, but . . . . here's a photo of what I did. I'm not sure why my photos last night are so fuzzy -- it must be me!

On Monday I plan to paint at least one wall of my bedroom -- it will be a pale yellow, which hopefully will look really nice with the pale yellow stars on my Shakespeare in the Park. Barb, who has it to long arm, says it's slated to hit the frame in mid-October. The shams are ready and waiting!! I have time to paint the room, but Monday seemed like a good day, and hey, it's still quilt related, right?

So I'm off to decide on borders for the log cabin. I really would appreciate any thoughts on quilting it! I've even thought of doing a pantograph of some sort on the back and trying my hand at that. This quilt will probably end up going to my estranged husband . . . . all the fabric is stuff from my stash that I probably would never have used . . . and I enjoyed making it. It's a bit masculine for most anyone else, you know?