Jun 30, 2009

I got there, almost

I added some dark blue and I think I've finished the medallion--of course except for the quilting or tying. And it'll take me a few days to acquire a quilt batt. I'll just dig through my stash for a backing. If necessary, I can piece a couple of things together for that. I still have a lot of yardage in my stash. So then I pressed a bunch of flannel bits, and I have enough to make a scrap quilt with those.

Jun 28, 2009

It's growing

Now it's getting difficult to get a good photo of my quilt since I have added upteen triangles all around. I had to put the quilt on the bed and stand on a footstool. These triangles are wonky. I didn't use a template. And I took the picture before I trimmed the edges. I've trimmed them now, and I just cut some dark blue strips to add on. I'm having a lot of fun with this quilt. It will have to be tied, not quilted, because it's gotten too big for me to be wrestling it onto the sewing machine for quilting and I don't do that much hand quilting. And I guess I'll have to get a batt.
Meanwhile, back at the ranch, the weather has warmed up (well, it's nearly July) and I was able to get into the swimming pool for some exercise yesterday. Walking in a pool is really helpful for arthritis. I'm getting ready for the Glorious Fourth. I have out my "USA" wall hanging that I made recently. I also have a couple of flags that I put outside in my plants. And a little bitty flag in a vase that goes on the table. Hooray for the Red, White and Blue. America--I love you.

Jun 25, 2009

Around and around

These triangles are for the next round of the medallion quilt. This quilt is getting to be a good size and I hope to add the triangles all around, and then one more plain round, and then I'll decide of it's big enough. No advance planning for this quilt! I was thinking of adding in more of the free-pieced star blocks, but I'm uncertain about that right now.
Meanwhile, I've been looking through my scraps for bits of flannel. Finn of http://finnleah.blogspot.com/ was writing about making a flannel quilt from scraps for a donation quilt. And I thought that that was such a good idea. I use flannel on the backs of baby quilts, and there are a lot of scraps left from the edges. I wonder if a quilt made of flannel with a flannel backing even needs a batting? I'm still donating things to Serving People In Need. I just knitted a hat for them. Speaking of donating--I managed to send off my little wall hanging to the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative. I posted a photo of the hanging on June 9th.

Jun 21, 2009

I finished crocheting this vest for my youngest daughter.
Here are the cookie bars, and the whole house smells like a chocolate factory. And I did no sewing to speak of. Happy Father's Day.

Jun 19, 2009

I managed to add a little strip to my quilt but this has been a busy week. When I returned on Tuesday evening I discovered that my hot water heater was not working. So then, I had to have the gas company man come. And he figured out that the heater needed to be fixed. So to make a long story short--yesterday it was Joe the Plumber working all morning here. He also fixed some outdoor faucets. There were three faucets over the top of the water heater. And one of them was really corroded. And so on. I was planning to cut up a big bunch of assorted scraps and make a round of liberated triangles on the quilt. Anyhow, I was able to have a nice shower and shampoo this morning.
My sister gave me her "secret recipe" for cookie bars, and I'm planning to bake them for Father's Day. I haven't tried this recipe yet, but I trust her. She's a wonderful cookie maker.

Double Chocolate Cookie Bars
2 cups (24 cookies) finely crushed oreo cookies
1/4 cup margarine or butter--melted
12 oz pkg chocolate chips (divided)
14 oz can condensed milk (not the evaporated kind)
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup chopped nuts
Cooking spray
Spray a 9 by 13 pan with no-stick cooking spray and preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine crumbs and melted butter and press firmly in bottom of the pan. Melt 1 cup of the chips with the condensed milk and the vanilla. Pour evenly over the cookie crumbs. Sprinkle nuts and remaining chips on top and pat down. Bake 20 minutes, or until set. Cool on a rack. Cut into squares. Store tightly covered at room temperature.

Jun 17, 2009

Here I am

I usually post frequently. But I've been away. My oldest grandson graduated from University of California at Davis. I'm so proud of him! He is now an Environmental Scientist. So if anyone is looking for an environmental scientist--he's available for interviews. The graduation day was lovely. The ceremony was in the gym. We family members sat upstairs in the bleachers. And it was fun to have the family together for this occasion. Afterwards, the frat brothers made a barbecue. And on the way home--I visited with my sister and her family, who live in between where I live and Davis. My sister has two of the cutest little granddaughters. The baby is just six weeks and it was my first chance to see her. Before I left I worked on my medallion quilt and added a couple of borders. I'm thinking of two more layers to go. Gwen Marston was right--in one of her books she says it's very important to do a lot of pinning when adding long borders. My seams were much straighter.
And PS, about those flowers that I posted last Wednesday--those were not my personal flowers. They are growing in front of my doctor's office.

Jun 9, 2009

Here's where things stand as of now: I'm working on adding more and more borders to my medallion. I added green and blue and now I'm making some free-pieced triangles. I might just put a plain square in the corners, not sure yet. And I'll have to add a little bit of fabric to make these fit in place. So now I learn the trick about medallion quilts--you have to make things fit as you go along. So I might just add some even easier bits next.
And here's my little quilt "Tribute to Modigliani" nearly ready for sending in to the Alzheimer's Quilt org. If you are wondering why I made these orange triangles, it's because Modigliani often used triangles of color to draw the eye into his work. Sometimes it was even in the way he posed models with their hands clasped. And I love the way he used orange.

Jun 6, 2009

Tribute to Modigliani

First of all, the star block that I posted the other day is on its way to being the center of a medallion quilt. Only one big square in the center, and then add on borders until it's big enough--whenever and wherever that takes me. I'm inspired by Gewn Marston's book "Ideas and Inspirations" which has some medallion quilts. Pardon me, Gwen, but I'm using some prints! Her book only uses solids and with great effect. She is a quilt artist. I don't make medallion quilts much, because I generally make quilts in sections, which I machine quilt before putting the whole quilt together. And medallion quilts don't lend themselves to that method. But, depending upon this quilt's final size, I will make the decision of quilting or tying later. One thing about making a medallion quilt--there are no squares to be joined together. Oh, that's not quite correct--I'm making some to sew into the border. But it's not quite the same as making a whole quilt out of equal sized squares.
Second of all, I'm posting a free-pieced quilt. It's tiny because I'm making it for http://alzquilts.org as a donation for research and care of Alzheimer's Disease patients. The largest quilt that they want is 9 by 12 inches. I was inspired by the books "Modigliani" by Douglas Hall and Gwen Marston's " Collaborative Quilting". Modigliani and Van Gogh are a couple of my favorite artists. Unfortunately, Modigliani died at a very young age from tuberculosis.

Jun 1, 2009

Log Cabin quilt completed, new project started

Here's the log cabin quilt completed. It looks so much better with the binding applied. I've changed my binding method lately. I no longer add a doubled edge. And I don't make bias binding any more. This is what I do--I cut straight strips 1 3/8 wide. I know that size sounds a bit on the fussy side. And I'm not a fussy quilter. But I have found by trial and error that it is the easiest size to work with. I join together as many strips as I need to go around the quilt. Then I sew it by machine to the edge of the quilt in a 1/4 inch seam. When I turn the quilt over and hand hem the binding down, I have found that it's really easy to needle turn under the edge. I hand hem while I'm watching TV, and it only takes an evening or two (depending upon the size of the quilt) and the quilt is ready to be signed, sealed and delivered! And I have also posted a photo of the start of my next project. Look how I have these photos all messed up. I don't know how some bloggers manage to add a bunch of photos and make them all come out in a nice order!