Easy Street Update – Clue 2

This clue was not my favorite after buzzing through all the bazillion triangles for Orca Bay!  I persevered though!  I haven’t finished the ironing but I’m calling it a success. 2012-12-02 18.36.30As you can see, I was surrounded by quite a few triangles. They really are brown. It’s not the picture quality! Purple isn’t my favorite color so I have brought in a substitution. There are quite a few different browns, too. I have a 30’s and a Civil War repro there. There’s also this wicked mod brown with dots. I love it. You can see my set up. I have the iPad set up with Netflix, headphones and make sure it’s plugged into the charger and then I just buzz through the TV shows while I sew. I rarely watch TV when it’s on…TV. 😛

Because of that obsession, I frequently name my projects after one of the TV shows I watch when I’m making it. I wonder what Easy Street will be called when I’m done?  So far I have only watched season 1 of Once Upon a Time. Please watch it. It’s fantastic.

If you already enjoy Once Upon a Time and you want more of this sort of mash up of fairy tales and real life, you should pick up the graphic novel called Fables. It’s really not your average comic book.

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Easy Street isn’t the only thing I have worked on this weekend. I was digging through my 2.5 inch squares scrap bin to make up a quilt for a friend’s daughter. She’s got an American Girl doll that needs a good cuddly blanket.  I just popped them in as leaders and enders and now need to just add a border and quilt it up quick.

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I think I can get it out before Christmas easily.

I also went over to the Quilted Crow this weekend because they were having a 30% off sale.  I got a wide back fabric that I have been putting off purchasing online because I’m lazy. 🙂 The cost was comparable to buying it online with the shipping included so I figured I couldn’t lose there.

My husband and I went Christmas shopping as well. Does anyone else feel like they go out and buy out a store yet come home with nothing? It’s like that every year and when Christmas Day comes, I get overwhelmed with the amount of stuff we have bought!

My dear son let me know (in no uncertain terms) that he would like to have Cinnabons on Christmas morning. He’s autistic so he’s very set in his ways and enjoys routine. My husband told me I have inadvertently started a tradition in our family. I am so happy about that but really, going to pick the things up on Christmas Eve AT THE MALL isn’t my idea of fun this year.  Of course, I will be going because that’s what we moms and dads do for our kids. 🙂

I do hope you all are enjoying Easy Street and the holiday season. Remember to step on over to Bonnie’s blog at Quiltville to see everyone elses’ progress!

Farmer’s Daughter November

Here we are again! It’s time for another Farmer’s Daughter update. I have to say I haven’t exactly been concentrating on it this month with everything else I have been working on but I do have some of my blocks done for the month.

I completed 84. Spool. I used a coffee bean fabric for my spool color and a stripe to look like thread. Although, it could totally be a bowtie. lol I thought about slightly tilting the stripe so it would spiral down the block but I forgot when I was cutting it out and I am happy enough with it to not go back when it was done.

 

 

Then we have 81. Snowball. This one went together in a snap. I liked choosing the snowy colors for it. Couldn’t you see a whole quilt done in these colors? Something with an alternating applique snowflake or snowman?

 

 

 

 

And here’s 41. The Friendship Star. I had to fussy cut all the “friends” and stick them all on the star.

It came out looking very baby quilt but I an sure that it will play nice with everything else I have put into the quilt.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I haven’t completed 9. Box because I keep cutting the fabric pieces too big so I need to go back and print the template again.  So the count is now 7 down 104 to go!

 

October’s blocks are:
16. Calico Puzzle
21. Contrary Wife
70. Prairie Queen
72. Railroad

November’s blocks are:
84. Spool
81. Snowball
9. Box
41. Friendship Star

December’s blocks are:
69. Practical Orchard
29. Economy
10. Bowtie
2. Autumn Tints

Easy Street – First clue!

Good Morning everyone!  Welcome to Easy  Street!  I just came off my Orca Bay quilt so I am really looking forward to digging into this new quilt. I especially loved the part where Bonnie Hunter said it would be easier than last year. Thank goodness, too. I barely pulled the other one off within a year!

I am making a concerted effort to be as precise as I can with this quilt because I want the next few weeks to NOT be filled with frustration. I think I am doing pretty good so far.

The first clue was the grey with the black and white pieces. I think I might have to get more of the grey if we are using it in another step. I cut a couple of my strips too small and I am now short of my 2 yard requirement.

All this “being precise” is a bit tiring though. I am getting through this step pretty slowly. I sewed through the strip sets and now I’m alternating pressing and sewing my “foursies”.

This arrangement wouldn’t even look bad by itself as long as there were some colorful borders around it.

To join in or just look at everyone elses’ progress, go visit Quiltville!

Thanksgiving and the Quilt Museum

Hello everyone!

I hope you had a wonderful holiday if you are in the United States.  My husband had to work on Thanksgiving so it was just me making dinner. I quite enjoyed it but when everything was prepared, I was extremely ready to be done. We do have a very traditional Thanksgiving meal because that’s what we all know and love which makes the process much easier.

After much feasting and some sleep, I took a trip to the New England Quilt Museum and the American Textile History Museum. I went with a couple of quilty friends and can I just say WOW! The quilt museum featured an exhibit called Great Quilts, Great Stories. The quilts were chosen not because they were the most gorgeous things but because there was a story associated with the quilt. It just goes to highlight the importance of telling the next generation the tales of your life.

This quilt is a Civil War potholder quilt which was actually used on a wounded soldier.  The pictures just can’t capture how lovely they really are.

I turned and saw this HUGE redwork quilt and, of course, immediately thought I needed to make one. (It will have to get in line with everything else!) I don’t know why I didn’t take a picture of the entire quilt but it was wonderful.

This one was just fun to look at and with all the red, white and blue quilts that my guild has done, it’s nice to see something “different” with the same color scheme.

I am in love with this one. It’s all just scrappy 1890’s through the 1930’s. It was done by a couple of sisters and makes me feel so much better about my own haphazard piecing. Who needs points when you can have a quilt that’s done!?

There were quite a few of the chocolate brown and pepto pink quilts. This one was a queen size I think.  The quilt was one of a larger collection that had been sold off at auction. The quilting was marvelous.

There was just such imagination in the quilting. I am certain I would never have thought of something like it. The quilter just used all that open space and really gave you something to look at.

Check this guy out! A mariner’s compass that isn’t complete! Don’t you feel better now!? Even your UFOs are museum quality.

This quilt has the distinction of being pieced by a young boy whose mother later quilted it and gave it to him as a wedding gift. It’s amazingly simple but still so much fun to look at!

One of my quilty buddies liked this one very much. I quite liked the clam shell quilting in it.

 

For lunch we went to the Club Diner and (oh my heck) was it delicious! I highly recommend the cheeseburger with sweet potato fries.

All in all it was a very long couple of days but I enjoyed every minute of them.

Through the looking glass

There are certain things that quilters collectively fall in love with… like batiks, 6 x 24 inch rulers, and Dear Jane.  Some of them go in and out of fashion but, on the whole, are never really gone. If there is one thing that I have always wanted for my adventures, it’s a Featherweight.  If you don’t know what it is then please allow me to tell you. It’s a Singer machine that was built between the 30’s and 50’s that is about 3/4 of the size of an actual sewing machine.  They are unlike today’s “computerized-digitized-embroidering-why-don’t-I-make-you-coffee-while-I’m-at-it” machines. They do one thing. They are uni-taskers. Alton Brown (from the Food Network) would hate it. It sews a straight stitch… a gloriously simple straight stitch.

Okay, okay. You have probably guessed by now that I TOTALLY BOUGHT ONE! It’s true. She’s mine and she’s lovely and her name is Alice.

She was born in 1956 which doesn’t seem so long ago especially for the “old-timey” look of the machine.  I have a 1970’s Singer that’s wicked mod looking so I’m guessing something happened to change them dramatically.  Anyway, Alice is in beautiful condition. She’s named after my Great Grandmother Alice and really I couldn’t think of a more perfect name for her since, as you may be able to tell, she’s sitting on the table that has another sewing machine in it.

The machine inside the table is Amelia. She’s named after another of my Great Grandmothers and she is a full size Singer that was given to me by my father.  I took a picture for size comparison. Amelia needs more than a bit of work since she was in storage for a long time but I have no doubt I can get her working. 🙂

Farmer’s Wife Tips and Techniques

We all know the book is just templates on a CD.  I am okay with templates but I would appreciate an alternate method to cutting out my teeny bits and pieces. Since this quilt isn’t brand new, I reckoned the internet would be the best place to find easier construction techniques.

Now we can certainly print out and cut out the templates. Get some old cereal boxes and paste the templates to the cardboard to make them sturdier. This is all well and good. Your farmers wife ancestors would be proud of you but we have easier and more efficient ways of working here!

First up is the Template Compilation!  It’s 15 pages long but it’s every template in the book! (WHAT!? You talkin’ crazy!) I know what you’re thinking. I already have all the templates. Yes, you do. The CD has them. However, the CD has them printed multiple times for each block which if you printed them all is a whopping 106 sheets of paper. It gets better with the second technique … just wait.

The next idea I have to share is that you can print out that template compilation on freezer paper! Cut your freezer paper into 8.5 x  11 sheets and print on the paper side of the sheets. Now you have templates that don’t wiggle when you cut around them. I can’t tell you how frustrating that is when you have a 4 patch that you’re squaring up and the templates are all wibbly wobbly.

The third idea is From Marti Michell‘s templates which work with all the blocks but the genius of the plan is that she’s come up with alternate construction techniques for nearly all the blocks to eliminate seams and make life easier. Click the link to find out how to sign up for the PDFs.

I’m a farmer’s daughter!

Heh. I may be from Indiana but my dad was not a farmer. However! That slight flaw will not keep me from creating a Farmer’s Wife quilt.  Have you seen these? Talk about gorgeous!

This all came about when my MIL told me she and a couple friends were kicking around the idea. I asked what the rules were. She just looked at me like “what do we need rules for.” There can’t be a quilt along without rules! We all need to be held accountable and if I’m doing it then I may as well make the rules. (Notice there was no actual time between her telling me and my becoming part of the project for her to actually ASK if I wanted to be a part of it?)

At this point I sat down to write the email. We will be making 4 blocks a month which means it’s a 2 year project. Officially the first thing in my life that I have planned 2 years in advance.  Heck, babies only take 9 months so this is a big deal.
Here’s my progress so far! They are 16. Calico Puzzle, 21. Contrary Wife, 70. Prairie Queen, and 72. Railroad.