Saturday, November 16, 2013

True Colors and Downton Abbey

They are going to keep making great fabric, so I am not sure why I need to hoard it when it's just out. Usually, I try to wait until it goes on sale, but lately, I'm affected more by the shadow of regret for not being able to acquire it rather than the the regret of seeing what I've purchased at full price go on sale. Since I get a frequent flyer discount at Hawthorne Threads, it's never at the full, $10 or $11 per yard that it normally sells for; I'm getting it at $8.50 or so, which spurs me further. I saw a FQ bundle of the Downton Abbey fabric collection on an unknown (to me) website, and realized that I didn't really know what to do with a lot of those colors, i.e. the whole "Edith" color story. So I went to HT and purchased a bunch of half and whole yards of the good ones. 
The Dowagers Damask in AmethystThe Dowagers Paisley in EbonyThe Downton Flourish in EbonyMarys Plume in RougeMarys Plume in SapphireThe Downton Tuft in AmethystMarys Berry in DoveMarys Berry in Rouge

Joel Dewberry does a great damask and a great wood grain, and his contributions to this collaboration, "True Colors," is not to be missed. I suspect a lot of that will end up overstocked, since it's not particularly inventive, and since the design is recycled, but the colors are terrific and I picked up a few yards of his pieces. Since the damask looks like pajama pants to me, I got 1.5 yard bits; Sophia's legs are getting so long, I wonder if that will be enough! I might have to mix and match for waistbands. Not a big deal since we never tuck in our tops and it will be a little secret, what terrific fabric lurks under our untucked tops.

Damask in TurquoiseWood Grain in TealDamask in RedDamask in VioletWood Grain in VioletScrollwork in Deep PinkWood Grain in GrayWood Grain in Straw

As for stash used, I am cutting into 18 FQs for a QOV with blues and reds. It's not a lot, but it's not nothing!

Stash Used: 4.5
Stash Used, total: 177.4 yards
Stash Acquired: 19. yes.
Stash Acquired, total: 297.25

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Sophie's QOV

It's clear that I suck at taking photos of quilts. It is only partially because I do this on my own; there's nobody I want to burden with holding the thing up in the air. Also, I don't have the patience to wait until there's the right lighting; this typically happens well after the sun is down. So I throw the thing down on the hallway floor and stand on the attic stairs so as to get the proper distance. This time, the photos from the step stool came out a little better, but you can see the shadow I throw in the bottom right corner. OK.

Sophia started this quilt as a Quilt of Valor long ago, and I was inspired by Veterans' Day to finish it. She was fine with that, having flown the coop to boarding school. How the time has flown!! She was learning how to make straight stitches just yesterday. 

I just received a huge stack of fabric from Hancock's of Paducah. Something made me order half-yard pieces of almost all of the new French General line. I was initially going to order a fat quarter bundle, but they were sold out. So, what's next best? TWICE AS MUCH fabric, and excluding the few pieces I didn't care for. I have ideas as to how to use this fabric, but really, I needed maybe a quarter of what I ordered. I also got 10 yards of solid white Konas in two shades.

Stash Used: 11 yards including backing for the QOV
Stash Used, total: 172.9 yards
Stash Acquired: 30 yards from Hancocks!!
Stash Acquired, total: 278.25

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Barcelona Jewel Box and Anabelle!

Great news on the project progress front! I finally finished quilting this McKenna Ryan quilt, and this is no small milestone. That baby has been on my quilt frame since February. Shame on me. Well, this tendonitis in my right elbow has me trying to keep my rotary cutting to a reasonable daily allowance, as every time I do some more rotary cutting, it flares badly. What better reason to get some quilting done?  I had a bobbin tension problem that made me rip out a lot of stitches and then...walked away for a long time. I just bought two packs of nice thread from Connected Threads, and wanted to see how it works on the long-arm. Like a charm!! 

These disjointed and incomplete blocks are the work in progress, Barcelona Jewel Box. I started cutting this last weekend in Sugar Hill. It was inspired by a charm pack/solid combination that I ordered from Pink Chalk, and the pattern came from one of the e-magazines, Fat Quarterly. I think it might have been the very first issue. I've since ordered many more issues and thoroughly enjoyed them. A lot of geometry went into these, since I will do almost anything to avoid a lot of half square triangles. I did the smaller "square in squares" by attaching two flying geese, but the larger ones were unavoidable since I was working with charm squares, not yardage. I must keep my eye out for patterns that make good use of charm squares. I love this quilt! 

Mary Jane's first grandchild has arrived! Annabelle was born on October 26, 2013 to Kerri and Adam Burgess. She is a beautiful beloved baby, and needs a quilt, for sure. This one is from the Town Square pattern I worked so hard to simplify. Something about buying a pattern that doesn't make the cutting and piecing as easy as possible makes me feel a little cheated. Not that I don't get a little smug satisfaction from re-writing the patterns, just that for $9 or $10, one ought to get cleverness, no? Especially when there are so many great free patterns out there now. 
OK, now the stash log. It isn't pretty. I bought a lot of white solid at the weekend sale up in Littleton, at One Stitch, Two Stitch. Other stuff has come through the door, that may not have been counted. :)

Stash Used: 7.5 Barcelona Jewel Box, 1.7 Annabelle's Town Square
Stash Used, total: 161.9 yards
Stash Acquired: 20 or so yards solids from Littleton
Stash Acquired, total: 248.25

Quilts of Valor

A recent news story about Quilts of Valor has made the demand for these charity quilts balloon out of usual proportions, and a plea went out from the administrators to get to work! So, I took these two quilts, which were completed, almost, and sitting in my sewing room, and finished the last few onerous tasks in order to get these quilts ready to award to recipients. 

The patterns for these quilts were generously given by Nancy Miller to her yahoo group, MysteryQuilts4Military. If you are interested in free fun quilt patterns, dripped to you in weekly clues, check out the group. It is a community of quilters with generous spirit, and if that describes you, you will fit right in!
These were "Knoll" and "Star Path,", mysteries number 27 and 28. Since they were cut out well before the stash blog was begun, I get no "stash-busting credit" for their completion.