Half sewn, more basting, and redbuds…..

I decided I needed to stick with it and sew the top half of this quilt.  The art quilters are coming Monday and I need the design walls cleared off.  I will have this photo for the layout of the bottom half so I can finish it later.  There is a lot of bias in this one but I kept it under control and it is going to finish a little under 35″ square.  I would never be able to do a large one of this pattern but LeeAnn over at Nifty Quilts did make a large one and it is a beauty.  Be sure to click on the link and check it out.
The cross quilt is basted now.
I guess I don’t need to worry about any freeze before the redbuds bloom.  We are still expecting a couple more days in the 80s and then the 60s over the weekend.  I think they will be fully in bloom by Sunday.


I finally made some more black and white wedges for this piece.  I’m half way there….none of this is sewn together, just pieces on the wall.
I sewed the border on #6 and I like it.  This piece wasn’t dark enough on the edge to stand alone and needed the border.  I like most of the series without borders.  This one is about 22″ square.
Spring is here!  I hadn’t seen any robins until yesterday, 65 degrees with wind gusts over 50 mph in the area.  Today is supposed to be warm too and then back down to the 40s.

Layout trial……

I made a few more black and white wedges but I won’t sew them onto the other pieces until I have them all made.  I can see I need the distribution of the black and white to change positions more in the wedges.  This will look a lot different when it is sewn because I don’t have the pieces lined up nice and tight right now.  It is kind of boring with just red/orange/yellow in it but it is my trial piece using wedges that were already made and leftover from another project.
I just can’t get enough of these beautiful blooms. 

Playing with a new idea……….

This is a pile of leftover Kaleidoscope wedges from a demo I did with the last class.  I dug them out because I wondered if they would work on a project I wanted to start.  One of the blogs I read is nifty quiltsClick here and go see what she has on her design wall and then I’ll explain where these wedges come into the picture.
I have the same book as she has so I could go to it to see the inspiration quilt.  I emailed her and asked if she was strip piecing and cutting wedges. I knew most people doing this pattern are piecing it one strip at a time on paper like she said she is doing.  I figured if you need 8 wedges alike why not strip piece it, cut it with a Kaleidoscope ruler and add it on all in one chunk.  She encouraged me to write a blog post about my idea.
I photocopied it in black and white so I could draw the seam lines with a red pen to see how the pattern evolves.  Then since my wedges were already made I had to work backwards for the measurement of the center piece between 2 wedges.  I cut a square I thought would be a finished size and and cut it corner to corner both directions (for 4 triangles) and then drew the center piece in and added the seam allowances and then cut it out.
I have it almost right.  I went to the basement and got my black and white leftover scraps from a Strips n Curves quilt and pieced onto them and then cut out the shape.  I need a tiny bit more seam allowance so that means it’s a little too small.  I will probably just make a small quilt from the wedges I have and use a totally different group of fabrics if I make the real quilt.  The planning and figuring out is the fun (and sometimes frustrating) part.

>Another finish, just under the wire…….


As usual a colorwash style quilt just isn’t as pretty in a photo as it is in real life.  I have the binding finished but have not done any ditch quilting yet.  It doesn’t ‘need’ any more quilting; I just want to find out if it works well to meander first and ditch quilt afterwards.  My shoulder is bothering me right now so I won’t be doing it right away.

My hardware store amaryllis is blooming just in time to bring in the new year.

This bird feeder, a present from my BIL and SIL, is labeled squirrel resistant.  Well they should have made that little cover latch a little better.  It was opened twice yesterday and this little rascal just sticks his head in the top and eats.

I have had birds trying it out too.  They usually dart in and out so fast I can’t get the camera focused on them in time.  This bird actually circled the whole center tube before it left.  It took 4 shots to get one with the bird in focus though.

It is time to retire my Charley Harper calendar so I was looking back through the pictures.  I like the way he simplified the black and white on the woodpecker.

I never thought about using dotted fabric for a calico cat but this painting in the calendar is good inspiration.  Every year I buy an engagement calendar with a different artist featured.

>Update on nature and students’ work……….
I planted a couple zinnias in this little round flower bed. The coneflowers are getting ready to bloom too. I had white ones in this bed but some have reverted back to pink.
There were just 2 in the class yesterday but several from the Tuesday class stopped by to see how they were doing. Here is the top ready for borders that one student made.

This second one is more of a denim blue. They made good progress today and I am proud of them.

The second day of a garage sale is usually slow so I am glad I only needed to be open for 2 hours. A lot of stuff left the garage even though a few of the things were free things. Getting rid of the stuff is the main goal. If I got paid for some of it that was a bonus. Today I’ll sort through what is left and figure out what gets donated where and what I can just pitch. I got enough tables down to get my van in the garage before it started raining last night.

>It is so amazing……….
all of the fabric choices in a class. Everyone’s individuality sure shows up. I didn’t get a picture of this first one up on the wall and I missed taking pictures of one person’s blocks altogether.
Floral multicolor

four groups of strips used in this one

This one will end up being queen size With 5 fabrics you get a ring with the center fabric of the strata. Everyone did great today. We are going to meet for one hour next Tuesday to talk about assembly and borders.

>Wedges cut……..
My class was small yesterday so I had time to cut my wedges while they sewed. I did a lot of pressing for them so they could keep sewing. I also did a little ripping. One machine didn’t want to behave itself.
Summer is officially here and we are feeling the heat already. I prefer 75 degrees myself.

>Back to Kaleidoscope……….
Today I teach the second group of ladies how to make Strip Pieced Kaleidoscope. I usually make up some strip sets when I am teaching so I have something to demo the cutting on. This one will be a scrappy looking yellow to red wallhanging.
We missed out on the big storms yesterday morning. Up north of us they had lots of trees down, heavy rain and hail. We had nothing until last evening and even then it was only wind and moderate rain. We were lucky. My garden is still safe. I need to get out and take pictures and document which plants I have where and which ones need dividing because they are getting too big.

My neighbor across the street always has a big garage sale the last weekend in June. Her kids come down from Wisconsin and set up all of the tables and handle the sale. This year I need to open my doors the same days and see how much of my parents things I can sell along with some of my own. I have to teach a class at 1 on Friday so I’ll only be able to be open from 8-12:30. The mornings are the best anyway.

>Ruler info

>This is the Kaleidoscope ruler……….
that I recommend for my class. It has the quarter inch lines drawn all the way across the ruler and it is also tall enough for several different groups of strips. One of the other brand rulers has medium green lines which I think are hard to see. Others don’t have as many lines to match up with the width of your strip set. Also the complete directions for making a quilt are on the back of the packaging with this one. They are well written and are the ones I teach from.
I got up with a migraine yesterday, so I took my 3 Advil and taught my class. I had 5 super nice ladies in the class. When I got home I was too wiped out to work on any project. Here are the 2 fabrics that I am considering next for the fill ins on the project from last week.

The blue one is a little more periwinkle than it shows in the picture. Several people have commented that they think blue will work. I find blue to be cold but I do happen to like periwinkle or rich royal blue. Hopefully I will have pictures for you tomorrow.