Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Dear Jane

I started my DJ quite awhile ago.  I cut my book apart and inserted each page into a plastic protector.  As a block is completed, it is placed with the page.  I attach the sashing and cornerstone to the top and left side as I go.  I've completed over half the blocks and quite a few triangles, but I haven't worked on it in a long time (years). 
The feature fabric for this block was purchased at Liberty of London.

My grand scheme is to assemble in sections (so I won't have to sew all those long seams).  So even though I have lots of blocks completed, the largest section assembled is four blocks by two rows - A1/B1 thru A4/B4.


One of my blocks is very smart - it spent a year at the public library!  I checked out 'Quilts from the Indiana Amish' by David Pottinger and took it with me to a DJ retreat in Shipshewanna.  The next time I checked the book out (at least a year later), I found one of my blocks tucked inside the book.  I know it was my block because it was sashed in my fabric.  I wonder if someone found the block and left it for me to reclaim.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Shipshe Retreat

Well, I have many works in progress, but when it came time to decide what to take with me on the Shipshewana retreat, none of my "starts" were in a good state to take along. So, I decided to start a couple of quilts that have been on my very lengthy to do list for some time. First up is a Miss Rosie pattern called Just Ask, and here is a sample of the partial block. I actually got a pretty good start on this one, so it now qualifies as a UFO.
There was quite a pile of half-square triangle trimmings stacking up, so it just had to become a little doll quilt. It's really pretty tiny (1-1/4" hst), so I'm thinking of a few borders, maybe courthouse steps style.
The other project I brought along was my shoebox full of 5" squares to make the Paducah Nine Patch from Pat Speth's first Nickel Quilts book. It is the quilt on the cover. I completed these four blocks to get an idea of where it was headed. If you ever decide to make this, don't follow the pressing directions, or you'll have lumpy seams. I plan to press them open. And, frankly, this would have been much easier to sew with strips, but I've already cut scads of 5" squares! The book has lots of great quilts to look at, and think about making, though.
I rarely make quilts from patterns even though I buy plenty of them! I do think that Miss Rosie patterns are great - clear instructions and illustrations. Plus, they are gorgeous!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Saturday Sewing

Saturday starts with a few hours of sewing.  When stomaches start grumbling, we head to town for the Saturday lunch ritual - JoJo's soft pretzel (dipped in butter). 

We have two great spots for fabrics - Lolly's in the Old Davis Hotel and Yoder's (a variety store with a sizable fabric department).  The first order of shopping business was border fabric. 

We've all spent alot of time sifting thru the fat quarter boat.  The boat is downstairs in A Little Bit of Lolly's where all bolt yardage is $6 per yard.

Walking back we stop at Yoder's for more stash enhancement.  This year I added to my French General stash - a Christmas present from a dear friend - and a putty grey solid for the center of an Amish Ocean Waves I'm working on.

The last stop is the Antique Mall.  Everybody found a treasure to take home.  I picked up four matching red transferware lunch plates.

Back to the Farmstead for sewing.  When we walked into the sewing room, Pat had already added her antique mall purchase to the design wall just to see if we'd notice.  Well, yeah!

Pat had this string quilt out to do some quilting - I love this one!  She pulled this together from the leftover squaring-up sections from string blocks. 

Susan finished this 4 block applique just as the buzzer sounded for Sunday packing.  She was so jazzed to get this done - started about 2000!

Great weekend!!!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Where Ya Been?

Our little group of five had our annual sewing retreat this weekend in Shipshewanna, IN. We had planned on posting each day so you could share in our fun, but couldn't get the laptop to pick up the wireless. So, here's Friday night's show-and-tell. Just two quilts to share - both beauties.

This Buckeye Beauty started from Guild Lotto blocks won by Pat. Pat is the featured quilter at this year's guild show. I have another quilt of hers to share tomorrow. She started a scrappy Buckeye Beauty this weekend.

This amazing piece is Sandy's original design. It's from an ostrich round robin held by the guild. You do all the rounds on your own quilt from monthly round installments. You were allowed to skip one month's round. Thanks for sharing, Sandy!

My workstation - tomorrow I'll share some pics from Saturday's shopping trip.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Star Alignment

Are you checking for star points in my quilt? I'm not referring to pieced stars - rather the cosmic kind. My personal stars aligned yesterday with frigid temps, lots of snowfall and Lori's doll quilt-along. I usually make full size quilts - quite a time investment. It was great working on a project that could be completed in a 'snow day'.

Thanks, Lori! I'm naming this quilt after you - Oregon Trails.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Cheddar Cheese and Crackers

We are both doing Lori's doll quilt-along (Humble Quilts link on right sidebar), and are anxiously awaiting the next installment. Here is our Step 1 progress:

Jan's - I am auditioning cheddar fabrics. This is a fat quarter of the one that I've selected - nice and pumpkin-y.

Vicki's - I'm hoarding cheddars for a future project, so I picked something different for the feature fabric. I'm using only one fabric for the light. Can't wait to add the 4-patch to fill in the 'holes'.

Block 4 of 'Beyond the Cherry Tree Quilt' is posted (link found on Nov 22, 2009 post).

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Doll Quilts Featuring Cheddar

While working on Lori's cheddar doll quilt-a-thon, I was thinking of other doll quilts that I had made using cheddar fabrics. This pattern came from "Twenty Little Four Patch Quilts" by Gwen Marston. I shamelessly copied her fabric choices, as that is what mainly drew me to it. This would be a good series quilt - doll, crib and full sized, I think. This is an odd little quilt, isn't it? It is a four patch with sashing and post, paying no mind to the orientation of the two colors of the four patch.

Finally, this Exquisite pattern really uses more of a gold. It also was in one of Gwen's Twenty Little books that were published by Dover. Great books if you can find them. They pop up on ebay at times if you are so inclined.