Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Quilt Retreat

Sorry I have been away the past few days, but I 
have been finishing a big project that I can't show just yet.  Plus getting
some small receiving blankets hemstitched for 
my daughter to practice on before I left on my retreat today.

We have been trying to decide who all was coming with me on the
 retreat.  We decided that my husband was coming up with my, but we ran into
 a sprinkler problem and he came into me covered in mud and said "I think you had better
head up by yourself, before you are late."  I got up here about 4:30 p.m.  Checked into my room
I am up at Snowbird in Alta, UT.  It is so beautiful up here.  Here is a picture from
my room.  Then I went and checked in with Handi Quilter.

I will spend the next 3 days taking classes from top class quilters.  Some of them you have 
heard of.  I will be taking pictures and telling you all about them each day.
I have long days ahead.  We start with breakfast at 7 and have class and 
shop hops or banquets until 10 each night.  It will be a lot to take in
I will do my best to show you all the excitement.  I got the most awesome welcome package
from Handi Quilter.  Here is a picture of everything that came in the bag.

Tonight there was a reception where we got to meet several of the other 
quilters that are taking the classes.  There are people from Canada, New Zealand, Australia, 
all over the U.S.  I have meet several people from Arizona, California,
 Massachusetts and Alabama.  To tell you the truth I was a little nervous coming by myself, but
all I had to do was start talking and asking questions about what they
quilt about.

One of my favorite educators that started me in longarming is her her name is Marie Eldredge.
She helped me pick out my longarm.  I have talked to her several time
over the years.  She is an amazing quilter.  Check out her info spot on Handi Quilter and look her
up on the web.  She is several places on YouTube and with several quilt magazines.
Here a picture of us been really nice then having fun.

Then I need to introduce you to my favorite batting company Winline Textiles.  I would not use any
 other batting.  I mostly use their 80/20.  But today I bought some bamboo to try on a
quilt for me.  She tells me that the bamboo keeps you cool in the summer
and warm in the winter.  So I'm going to give it a try.  It is
a little more expensive, but boy it feel so nice.
She has a new wool in.  She didn't have any here, but I have some on order
I have to decide what quilt I want to do this with,
because this with such a nice wool.  So much better than any wool I have ever used before.
She is such a great person to work with.  Please give her a try go check out her website!
Here's a picture of her and I.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Scrap Sorting Boxes

I was giving 4 bags fabric a member in my guild.  I will take any
fabric that that someone needs to give away.  If I can't use it in a quilt,
 I find a use for it in other ways.  If it is wool I can felt it and use that
 for applique.  If it is upholstery fabric I can use that for outdoor  projects. The
fabrics that just can't be use for projects because they are worn out, I
put them inside a cushion for a dog or cat.  If my animals don't
need one I donate them to the shelters.  So many animals
are in need of comfort and I love to help.

I went to Costco and bought 6 large clear storage boxes (I had several boxes
 at home that I could use for some of the other colors right.).  I made labels and gathered
 additional boxes for all these colors Red, Pink, Purple, Blue, Green, White,
 Brown, Black, Yellow, Orange, Gray, Cream.  I sat for 2 day with boxes
 spread across my family room.

From each bag a pill of fabric would come I would sort it into a small pill of
fabric by color.  Then off they went into the boxes.  A couple of colors overflowed
 the clear boxes and hand to graduate to bigger ones.  That just
means those colors will be a background color in a scrap quilt here soon.  But I
do need to organize them more than that.

I saw an idea from Beaquilter that she sorted these boxes
 even further.  She put cardboard dividers into her boxes and then
 sorted by color value.  You could really see the difference.  I don't have the time
 to sort by value right now.  That will have to wait for another day.

I did sort this orange box the other day, because I have been in it a
 lot lately.  I pulled all the large pieces together on one
end of the box.  The other end I put all the scraps together and
the medium size pieces together.  I want to iron everything at some
point.  That way I can just pull and cut.

This is my scrap box.  As I'm piecing, I put all my scraps in here
 and once a week I sort this box into my big boxes.
I makes it so I can just have a central place to put things
and not have to think about it until the end of week.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

EQ7 Jump Start Sew Along: Block 2

I have so many things to get done this week, so I got this done first thing Monday morning.
First I pick fabrics from my color tones.  I kept one fabric that was the same
 from my first block.

I cut out all the pieces needed from each fabric.  Then matched up the fabrics
for the HST.  For these blocks I marked from  corner to corner.  Then sewed
along that line.

Before I a 1/4" from the seam I made sure I was getting the 
correct cut.  Why?  Because I had directional fabric.  If you have 
directional fabric you want to make sure that it is going the 
correct way, so always check before cut.  The old saying

"Measure twice cut once."

Well, I think we need to 

"Look twice and cut once."

So here is the final product.  For full instructions on this block
you can go to their link EQ7 blog.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

2nd Week of Aviatrix

This week was really easy for assembly.  That is nice, because I'm working on getting
 my first quilt together for publishing.  I fixed the waves from last week.
I unpicked the HST square border just a little bit from both gray borders.
Then on two of the HST seams I took the seam in just enough to take
 away the wave.  Then I reattached the gray

Because I had a little extra time I did spend some time trimming threads
 from the back of the quilt also.

When you go to quilt the quilt you want to make sure there are not
any stray threads on the back.  They can catch causing threads to break.

Here my finished work for this week.

Saturday, May 17, 2014

EQ7 Jump Start Sew Along: Block 1

I have only had EQ7 for 2 years, but that 1st year I never used it.  I tried to do the 1st one, but my mind was in another area of life.  So I'm going to do this one.  Then go right into their one from last year.

So I quickly started followed all their directions which you can find on their blog at
behind the mouse the electronic quilt blog.  The quilt along is titled EQ7 Jump Start.

Then I started playing with colors.  I do play with fabrics if I have fabrics close to those that I have installed on my computer.  You need to remember that you can download fabrics and also add fabrics from the fabric library.  I just wanted to be quick, so I went with colors and pulled from my stash that matched those tones.

These are my fabrics.  Yes, I did start sewing before I grabbed a picture.  I did it before I got to far though.

I don't pin to much, but I pin my seams.  Why?  I like my seams to match.  I have tried many ways and have found that if you cross pin it holds the seam together better.  The other thing is, you either pull the pin out just before you get to the pin.  If you see how I placed my pins you have already sewn those seams together.  But this really does not create a speed bump as people have called them.

As you can see my seams meet each other.  They are really good friends.

My finally product!

Friday, May 16, 2014


I am working on the Aviatrix Medallion quilt from Oh! Fransson As of now I am this for...

Well, that was last week.

I worked on the half square triangles and the 1/2" border.  My block it bigger than hers, so I had to add extra blocks and extend my border.  I know there is a wave in the border.  I will be taking it off and redoing it.  I have been under a little rush with some other things here at the house and didn't see it until I posted it to instagram.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

EQ7 Tutorial Tuesday

EQ7 Tutorial Thursday
ahhh design

I have done a tutorial for the first time in EQ7.  To make sure I was doing everything right I had Bea's website opened.  I did mine a little different and since this was my first time I will give you almost every step that I took to get there.

 1. Open EQ7 and select new project. Name your project I named my Hillbilly May.  Because we are working with Hillbilly's Ahhhh’s and this is my May project.

2.  Then I went to the Libraries tab.  Selected Layout Library.  Because I don't wanted the smallest project for my first one I went to the cribs and found the pattern that said Thousand Pyramids.  Added it to my sketchbook.

3.  You need to click on the sketchbook and select the pyramid quilt.  Now go the layout screen to make the changes needed.
                    a.  each side 1.5" Because Hillybilly's are 3" on each side (Bea did her's 1.375 because they "look" right.  I also did them that way.)
                    b.  You also need to change the size an Ahhhh design is only 10 wide.  She did hers 30 X 24.
I did mine 36 X 28.  Here's a picture of what the layout should look like.

Now comes the fun part.  The coloring.  I colored mine blue, turquoise and white.  I couldn't resist adding a small patch of red in the middle of one flower.

I had never tried the random recoloring tool before.  In fact I had to try and find it.  You may not know where is is either.  If you left click on the right tool bar there is a window that comes up and says  add/remove buttons.  This is what you need to click on to find it.

This is what I got when I click on my pattern a few times.

I had a lot of fun.  Give it a try.  See what fun pattern Hillbilly has that you can make.  They are not very expensive either!

Portable Ironing Board

I need a small ironing board to use while I was sitting at the couch.  So I needed to find a piece of wood.  I was walking out of my food storage room and looked down and there was this nice piece of pine.  The perfect size.  You don't want to use pressed board because when it gets hot it releases toxins from the glue that is used to seal all the wood together.  You don't have to use pine, you just need a hard wood.

I used some old scraps big enough to cover around to the back.  Then I found some old batting that I wasn't going to use in a quilt that was laying around.  You don't want it to be to thick so you can have the hardness of the wood to help press.
I cut away the excess batting from the sides so that it would be easier to wrap around the sides.  Then I used tacks to attach it in the back.  I made sure the corners were secure.  it was really easy and has come in handy for a table also.  I'm so glad I made it!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Sheet or Not to Sheet?

Sheet or Not to Sheet?
That is the question.  I have done some research on using sheets.  When I first got my long-arm I was short on money but needed to practice.  I went out and bought some cheap muslin.  And it was cheap.  Then I went to the thrift store and bought sheets and used them to practice on.  I make quilt sandwiches to practice on.  I make sure my tension is OK and practice designs.

Here are some other reasons why you should not use them:

1 - The count in the sheets are so high that it makes them really hard to work with.  The weave is stiff.

2 - As the needle comes down, the threads are unable move out of the way.  Instead, the needle pierces the threads and breaks them.  Over time this will create a hole in the quilt.  With all the time we put into piecing and quilting our quilts we don't want this to happen.

For these reasons I have chosen to not use sheets on the backs of my quilts.  I will use them to practice with.  But something that I am going to spend time to quilt and want to the quilt to last.  Therefore I will not use sheets for backing. 

Monday, May 12, 2014

1 1/2" Block Exchange

I have been participating in a Postage Stamp Exchange for 1 1/2" blocks and 2 1/2" blocks.  It is a Facebook group.  There are 3 different exchanges a year.  You can sign up for 1 to 25 sets.  Each set contains 100 blocks and cannot contain any repeat fabrics.  I signed up for 10 sets of the first exchange of the 1 1/2" blocks and have just received my blocks.  I am now over the 1 1/2" blocks exchanges.  I would love to have more people get involved in the exchange.

These are all the blocks that I received for the March Exchange.

 This is what I do with my block when I receive them.  I sort them by colors.  Not every batch is the same, because I don't always get turquoise or black.

I have designed a few blocks to help people see some fun ways to use these blocks.  I will give a few tutorials in a week are two.  But for now enjoy these pictures.  The biggest thing that I have learned with scrap quilts is use opposites.  Like a dark than a light next to each other.  This really helps the patterns form if that is what you are trying to get.


X Marks The Spot

Twisted 16 (I know my triangles are not the right size.  I just did this to show you.)

 Super Sized X (follow the dark colors)

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

April Block Count

April was a slow month for putting blocks together.
I spent a lot of time on the computer getting the business put together.  There were some blocks that I did get put together.  So here is the count.

I started doing some blocks that were posted on Patchwork Posse's blog.  They host 12 bloggers that design blocks for a quilt.  They have a new block each week.  I really liked the  blocks, so I joined in.  I have some catch-up to do.  I will get these finished this summer.  But I got 6 blocks finished.  That's one 6 that I need to do to get the quilt finished.

I did 5 blocks for my guild's mystery quilt.  Then I finished 5 for the Kaffe class that I'm taking.  I started a wool applique BOM.  I finished 1 block there.  Then I have my wonderful leader enders, where I finished 96.

So my total for April is 113.  This is for the block count report over at Prairie Moon Quilts.