Friday, February 20, 2015

It's a mystery

Recently I worked on my blocks for the Four Seasons quilt group mystery quilt. Pretty Girl was my go-to machine for that. :)

When I shifted back to working on the star quilt, I decided to use some inexpensive fabric to "play" with first since I haven't done this pattern in decades, and the other time I made it I was using a cardboard template, cutting pieces with scissors and hand sewing the pieces together. Phew!

This time I'm following Eleanor Burns' method, so there's a little bit of a learning curve...and I don't want to waste any on trial and error.
Yesterday and today are my Cornell Backyard Birdcount days. Yesterday we had a Carolina Wren show up. Acording to Cornell, these birds have been steadily moving north so aren't considered uncommon, but it was a first for me to see one. :)
In peace and piecing,


Friday, February 13, 2015

Lake effect snow, bird count day, and starting on the Lone Star quilt

Yesterday we had lake effect snow off and on throughout the day, ultimately adding upwards of another ten inches or so of new snow.

Thursday and today are my bird count days for this week regarding Cornell's Project Feeder Watch, so I've been busy watching birds (and others) who show up for a bite to eat or a sip of water.

We have had just a wee bit of fine snow off and on through the day but cold temperatures - so far we've made it up to 12°F - which is actually much warmer than was forecast, so I'm feeling grateful.

Since it isn't much fun to be outside, I've just started looking at the fabrics which are likely to be players in the next quilt I'll be starting soon. It'll be a Lone Star quilt (aka Star of Bethlehem, aka Native Amercan star, and several other names as well depending on just how one does it). Like the double wedding ring this one will be a gift (for a friend this time) and will also be queen size.
Between the colors of the birds, the deer, the squirrels, and the fabric, I've been able to mostly ignore the cloudy skies. :) And since we've made lasagne, beef and veggie soup, home-made bread, and chocolate walnut drop cookies, I'll have plenty of time over the next few days to look for inspirational images, and then begin to cut fabric! I hope to use all three of my machines: Lida, Pretty Girl, and the modern Janome - in piecing this quilt.

As I'm watching fine snowflakes coming down yet again...

 In peace and piecing,


Saturday, February 7, 2015

Double Wedding Ring Quilt -Finished!

The double wedding ring queen sized quilt requested by one of my daughters-in-law is done! I was battling a rotten cold all week, but since I had gotten the binding made and machine stitched to the front just before the germs got me, I was down to just the hand stitching of the binding to the back. So, on the days when I had a little bit of energy, I had the perfect quilt project to work on. Those little bits of time added up, and's finished. Huzzah! :)

The bias binding worked well as it curved in and out, and the quilt lays nice and flat when I spread it out on the floor. I'm also pretty pleased with how the quilting turned out.

Weather wise, we hit 30 °F today -woo hoo! Earler in the week we picked up an additional 8-10" of snow, and every day since we've continued to get an additional 1-2". Since the temperatures have stayed in the teens and twenties for highs each day, it just keeps getting a little deeper each day. Tomorrow night into Monday and possibly even Tuesday our area is projected to possibly get another 10-16" so it could be interesting around here! When the deer came around today, the snow was nearly up to their bellies, so if we get more as predicted, it could be tough going for them. I'm really glad we put burlap around the rhododendrons out back, and around the hollies and azalia out front. Last winter the deer chewed the heck out of these plants. The reality, of course, is that deer will eat pretty much anything when they're hungry.

Here's what it looked like just the other day -

I think that calls for some contrast. Fortunately for me, my Christmas cactus has decided to be a Valentine cactus this year...

Today I mustered up enough energy to cut out the stage one pieces of the mystery quilt for the Four Seasons Quilters group I belong to. Tomorrow I hope to get those sewn together.  I also need to get the twin sized Project Linus flimsy loaded on the long arm and get that quilted. After that I need to start on a Lone Star (queen size) quilt for a friend. Lots of good projects for this cold, snowy weather. :)