Tuesday, February 28, 2017

February Wrap-up

Well, February comes to a close with very little progress to report, although I must say that I spent more time working on projects than usual. I was on the road so much of the month that most of my time was spent on applique and rug hooking, neither of which goes very quickly.

I started off the month with a trip to Homestead Hearth's Super Bowl sale.  The following week when I was down in Dallas at the Applique Academy I received a call from the shop indicating that I had won a quilt in their Super Bowl drawing. I stopped by the shop on my way to Kansas City this weekend and picked it up, It is a beautiful quilt and is completely different from anything I make.

The Lenexa hook-in was lots of fun. I had taken my ship from Sally Kallin's class (was that 2015?) along as my Old Settlement is too big for a lap frame and really enjoyed working on that one again. I have actually made decent progress on it in the past few days - I might have to try to finish it off before going back to the other one. Can I finish them both by June???

I didn't get a lot of pictures of rugs at the hook-in but did take this one - I am in love with the pattern and the way the background is hooked. The pattern is called Primitive Paisley. I may have to have this one...

We found a great "dive" called Growlers just down the street from the Community Center.  The food was delicious!  We particularly enjoyed the garlic Parmesan pretzel appetizer.

I made it home in time for a couple of hours in the sewing room on Sunday.  I caught up on my Triangle Gatherings 6" blocks - only to see when I logged in to post this that she posted another one today. I'm still doing pretty well at keeping up.

And I had time to finish a few more bow ties. My total for February was 64, or 2.1% of the number required to finish the quilt. I'm not sure how many I have altogether - I need to count. But given how little time I had at home this month, I am just happy to be able to count any progress on my UFO.

I did not get anything accomplished on the other UFO assignment for the month, Among Friends. Hopefully the next time that one comes around I won't be traveling. It requires serious sewing machine time.

Can't wait to see what UFOs I will be putting on the "To Do" list for March!

Monday, February 20, 2017

TKDAA 2017

Apologies in advance for the lousy photos - I think it is about time for a phone upgrade (or to go back to an old-school camera).  This year's TKDAA was lots of fun albeit not terribly productive (as usual for me!). I was in Elly's "self study" class this year and spent my time working on a block for my SLAM quilt. It is amazing how long it can take to prep a single block! I finished the week with about a quarter of it stitched.

Elly was entertaining as always. There were so many beautiful quilts on display during the dinners, including a number of Sue Garman's designs.

Mary Koval shared several quilts and her vast knowledge of broderie perse applique in a luncheon lecture.

She brought along this recently-acquired album quilt to share with us. It is in wonderful condition!

Brenda Papadakis discussed her Dear Jane journey at a dessert reception.  The quilt behind her was made for George and Laura Bush by quilters from all around the world by the online Dear Jane group after 9/11.  Brenda has been trying to get the quilt to Laura Bush for years.  

Spending time with Brenda over the week and seeing other attendeess quilts and blocks makes me want to start another DJ quilt. I started three but have never landed on a color theme that inspires me to keep going. It's likely a fourth start would meet the same fate - and I already have more projects started than I can finish in my lifetime. So far I have controlled my impulses - hopefully the thought will fade soon!

Lisa has been busy posting Triangle Gatherings patterns!  I caught up on my 6" blocks over the weekend. I still haven't started any of the smaller ones.Below are blocks 8-13.

I also spent a little time working on bow ties yesterday so I could claim at least a little progress on one of my February UFOs. I only managed to finish 16 before it was time to make dinner but it's better than nothing! I shudder every time I see the total needed on the pattern card (3,023). Sigh!

I also worked a little on block 1 of Sue Spargo's 2017 BOM over the past couple of weeks but her BOM rules prohibit us from sharing pictures.  I hope to finish the applique this week so I can get to the decorative stitching.  The second block kit arrived Saturday so I am already falling behind.

I'm off to Kansas City for the Rock Creek Hook-in next weekend. I have made a little more progress on my Maggie rug but nothing worth sharing - still trying to get half of the background finished before moving on to do more of the fun stuff. I am still hoping to have that one finished before heading back to Janice's in June....an ambitious goal for sure!

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Overdue January Wrap-up

I have been crazy busy and have not had a chance to post my January UFO update until now... I managed to cross one item off of my list - I completed the binding on my Farmhouse quilt. It was quilted well over a year ago.  I am not a big fan of binding!

The quilting (done by Elvira Illig) is amazing!  These pictures don't do it justice.  She did an incredible job.

I also completed my basket block for my SLAM quilt (posted previously) and prepped another block for SLAM.  I will be working on SLAM at TKDAA this weekend so I hope to have more progress to report on it soon.

I finally made a start on my Triangle Gatherings blocks. I decided to try Lisa's starch method again as she is adamant about it making a difference. I starched my charm squares and waited overnight for them to dry.

I'm not sure if they shrunk a little with the starching or if they were just cut a little on the small side but some of them were a bit challenging to get lined up with the triangle paper. There certainly wasn't any excess.  

I have to admit that they turned out very well - better with the starch than the one I tried without previously. I assume that it is at least partly due to the starch. I also pressed the seams open as Lisa suggests. There are just too many coming together in the corners for them to lay flat otherwise.

At the time that I took this photo I was completely caught up on my 6" blocks. Two more have been posted now so I am behind again.  I still plan to make at least some of them as 3" blocks also.

I am not predicting a lot of UFO progress for February.  Both of the UFOs selected (bow ties and Among Friends) are machine-intensive piecing projects and I am only home one weekend this month. I really don't have time to do machine work during the week, so my ability to make progress is limited.  I will hope to do better on those next time they come up.

I'm off to Dallas tomorrow for 4 1/2 days of applique fun. I have plenty of projects packed (I am taking a "self study" type of class) and have big plans for getting a lot accomplished!