Tuesday, April 25, 2017

AIHC Challenge, April 27

AN EVOLVING IMPROV PROJECT

I started the Rainbow Scrap Challenge for 2016 by making, among other things, a 16-patch block using the colors of the month supplied by Angela at soscrappy.  They were a mix of two colors each month, such as pink and brown, purple and blue.  I had no thought for any use of them when they were done.  
These were the first four blocks through April, 2016.  My only goal was to make them as colorful and playful as I could.


By August I had nine blocks, nice but not enough to use by themselves.


The tenth color was black and neutrals, which I chose to skip.  Instead, in October I decided to make more muticolored blocks and ended up with these.


I certainly had lots of color but no purpose in mind.  So they just got stuck down in a pile of UFOs untiil last week.  I had some free time and, while browsing through my stash, I found this fleece blanket with monkeys and bananas.  It was designated for a Project Linus quilt backing and at one point I had bought some banana fabric to go with it.   How many people buy banana fabric?  Only us crazy quilters.  


I only needed to add about 6 inches all around to make a little child quilt.  What better than monkeys and bananas?  The finishing touch was the 9-patch corner blocks and one flimsy finished this morning.



Is it colorful enough?  I really love it, an improv to donate to Project Linus on May 8.   In fact, I guess it also counts toward AHIQ goal two because it has two different sizes of blocks  However, I already have some blocks in mind for that goal, so just count it as an extra improv and a UFO finish.

Thanks, Kaya and Ann, for running this challenge.  I'll be back next month for sure.  Come check out the Ad Hoc Improv Quilts doings at  Kaya's blog,  Sew Slowly, or Ann's blog, Fret Not Yourself






Thursday, April 20, 2017

RSC17 week 16

HIDDEN HOUSES

This week I've spent nearly all my time piecing my Summer KF quilt.  I plan to show it at our Monona Quilters group on Monday.  It will still need the outer red border at that point, but I can't wait for my friends to see it.  You folks online saw the whole layout last week, but they have only seen two blocks.  

So, in checking off  monthly list of projects and blocks, I found I needed to make two multicolored houses for the month's RSC17 part.  It took very little time to make them.  



I was really happy to find the sweet kitten for the yellow house.  She seems to be growing an avocado tree from seed in the little pot.

Then I decided to pull out the rest of the houses and, instead of eight, there were ten of them!  I see that two others are multis, so I must have made them at the beginning of April and forgot to take pics before putting them in my pile.   So here are the ten done so far.


The blue and pink house and the wild striped one are the two extra multis.  It's the first time I've gotten ahead rather than behind in my blocks.  I think it will probably be a onetime event.

Here is another multi I made back in 1980.  We moved from California to Sopkane  WA two years before, but Roger lost his job there and found work in the Seattlle area, 300 miles away.  I wanted to make a memory quilt of our stay there.  I asked my little quilt group for advice and, with their generous help in piecing the squares, I got all of our friends signatures on the throw quilt. But the border did not work out.  It was only  my second quilt and I did not know how to measure the width across the middle, etc.  When I hand quilted the first side it was very wavy, a disaster.  I never did finish it until last year, when I just cut the border off and made a wraparound binding with the backing.  So now Sarah has a nice snuggle quilt with many of our memories.


I used fabrics from Beth's clothing and other calicoes, real 1970's style.  But it has not aged a bit, a forgotten piece of our past with a new life.

I hope all of you are making good progress toward your goals, whether a few or many.  Each finish is something to celebrate and we all celebrate with you.

Wishing all of you a lovely springtime.
See what all the colorful scrappy fun is about this week at 
Rainbow Scrap Challenge at


Friday, April 14, 2017

RSC17 week 15


A COLORFUL WEEK

Lots going on this week and good news!  I saw the first flowers in our garden today, hyacinths of different colors, lovely and sweet smelling.  It's about time. 

I did not accomplish much stitching this week, but did get my Folded Box for April done.  I was not sure I would get the 3-D effect using three colors of multicolored fabric.  The darkest is a lovely forest green with tiny colored blossoms, but it looks black in the photo.  I'm not showing the first photo which had one of the geese blocks headed the wrong way.  Late night ripping and repairing was needed.


The really special highlight of my week was Thursday evening, when Beth and Sarah came to help lay out my 30 Kaffe Fassett blocks.  Sarah did the crawling on the floor and Beth took the excellent photos.  I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE IT !


Since each block is 16 inches and there is an  additional outer border of a gorgeous red print to add, it comes to about 80 X 96 inches.  Today I started by piecing two rows, checking them against the photo to be sure of the pleacement.  Can't wait to get it to my friend to have it quilted.  

TO ALL MY DEAR BLOGGER FRIENDS,


Thanks once again for your friendship, which means so much to me.

Wishing all of you a lovely springtime.
See what all the colorful scrappy fun is about this week at 
Rainbow Scrap Challenge at





Friday, April 7, 2017

RSC17 week 14

MULTICOLOR FUN AND CHALLENGE

What a change this month.  It's not as simple as I thought to work out a good piece using multicolored fabrics.  First of all, I can't do a crayon this month.  All the wax colors would mush together into muddy brown, not very exciting.  

My project for this week was two Geese Migration blocks.  But how do you make them noticeably different?  My solution was grouping them by dark and strong versus lighter and paler.  The starting point was a dark midnight blue with dull gold dots.  That made the sky for the first group of geese, and strong, bright color mixes were easy to find.


As you can see, within that range I was able to grade the geese from light to dark.

The daylight block was trickier.  I finally chose a sandy beach fabric for the triangles.  Apparently the geese decided to take a break and relax in the sun.  Here the squares are softer also.


I had a busy week otherwise, so all that I got done was my Summer quilt blocks 21 and 22.  It's getting more difficult to find combinations I haven't used before.  That's where photo records come in handy.  But Kaffe Fassett hasn't let me down yet.  



We still have very few flowers in bloom, so I'm happy to be working with all these fun multis.  Can't wait to see what all of you have come up with this week.

Wishing all of you a lovely springtime.
See what all the colorful scrappy fun is about this week at 
Rainbow Scrap Challenge at



Friday, March 31, 2017

RSC17 week 13

A TIP AND A FINISH

I finished my red projects last week, but I had a major finish to keep me busy this week.  However, before I forget, here's a tip I've been meaning to pass on.  Free sturdy storage containers.


These a just a few of the handy free containers I've saved from recycling to use for my quilting storage.  Left to right, a fresh strawberry container holding short strips,  a Rubbermaid square (not really free, but a nice tight lid).  This holds all my open basting pins, because I use the larger ones.  Third is a donut hole box which is the perfect size for my rolls of thread.  The last is a food container used for neutral 4-patches, which I may use someday. 

So don't throw out those plastic food containers.  They are great quilting containers and FREE!

I'm also including my latest Summer quilt blocks.  These feature two of the beautiful Kaffe Fassett fabrics sent by Cynthia of Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework.


Isn't this the most gorgeous teal and blue fabric?  This is going to be a corner block on my quilt.


This HOT number will have to claim a center spot on the quilt.

THE REVEAL:  I entered the quarterly Ad Hoc Improv Quilts challenge run by Ann of Fret Not Yourself and Kaja at Sew Slowly.  Several years ago I was inspired to make a wall hanging symbolizing Hope.  When their challenge was Chinese coins pattern I made a number of false starts and then remembered  Hope.  So my project became Seeds of Hope, buried deep in rich soil and waiting to sprout toward the sunlight.  


I found all the dark scraps I could and included the bright patches to repellent the life in the seeds.  The sun was attached with Modge Podge on a scrap of old tie dye for sky.  I used Grunge fabric strips for their earthiness.   It measures about 16 X 30 inches.


The backing came from my stash, showing the flowers that bloomed.  It also became the binding.


The quilting was done freehand,with my walking foot.  It represents God' life force moving in the seeds.  
The border is a very rough idea of vines or leaves.


Here is a good view of the overall quilting.


After a rough week and a rush to finish this, I'm really looking forward to April for the new RSC17 color and the new AHIQ challenge.

Wishing all of you a lovely springtime.
See what all the colorful scrappy fun is about this week at 
Rainbow Scrap Challenge at

AHIQ Challenge finish

LAST MINUTE FINISH

THE REVEAL:  I entered the quarterly Ad Hoc Improv Quilts challenge run by Ann of Fret Not Yourself and Kaja at Sew Slowly.  Several years ago I was inspired to make a wall hanging symbolizing Hope.  When their challenge was Chinese coins pattern I made a number of false starts and then remembered  Hope.  So my project became Seeds of Hope, buried deep in rich soil and waiting to sprout toward the sunlight.  


I found all the dark scraps I could and included the bright patches to repellent the life in the seeds.  The sun was attached with Modge Podge on a scrap of old tie dye for sky.  I used Grunge fabric strips for their earthiness.   It measures about 16 X 30 inches.  


The backing came from my stash, showing the flowers that bloomed.  It also became the binding.


The quilting was done freehand,with my walking foot.  It represents God' life force moving in the seeds.  
The border is a very rough idea of vines or leaves.


Here is a good view of the overall quilting.


After a rough week and a rush to finish this, I'm really looking forward to April and the new AHIQ challenge from Kaya.
Wishing all of you a lovely springtime.

I'm very happy to be linking up with Ad Hoc Improv Quilter at Ann's blog, Fret Not Yourself.  Please check out the fascinating things shared there by really talented people.




Tuesday, March 28, 2017

AIHC CHALLENGE, MARCH 26


This is the end of the quarter for our first Ad Hoc Improv Quilts challenge, using Chinese coins.

For me it's a continuation of a quilt design I had in mind several years ago.  There was a group collecting small wall hangings to auction off, to benefit Hospice.  This was very meaningful to me because my husband was cared for in hospice until he passed away in 2010.  Just when I had my design and fabrics ready to use, they announced they were closing the auction because they had reached their $250,000 goal.  I was disappointed but kept the fabrics and the idea in mind.

I began my improv by challenging myself to stick to neutrals or b/w fabrics.


This  did not inspire me at all.  I stared at it with some variations for a week before dumping it.
Then I remembered the old challenge, which I had called Hope.  I began fresh with many layers of dark pieced strips, with an occasional bright spot added.

I turned it vertically and it became Seeds of Hope, planted deep in good soil and working their way up,toward the light. The sun was attached with ModPodge on this tie-dyed remnant


The layers start with gray at the bottom, the bedrock, and the hole is filled with lots of good mulch and soil nutrients.  The seeds are reaching for the morning light.

I found two lengths of green for the border and ended up with less than an inch to spare.  

This morning I found just the right backing fabric in my stash.  I've gotten it pinned but not quilted yet.  That will involve sinuous vines creeping upward. Sorry I did not get this entirely finished.  A health problem interfered last week, but I'm fine now and ready to quilt it and self bind it with the backing.

Here is my progression so far and I hope to have it finished this week.  The backing represents all the flowers that will brighten this useless space and bring hope to those who see them.




I'm very happy to be linking up with Ad Hoc Improv Quilter at Ann's blog, Fret Not Yourself.  Please check out the fascinating things shared there by really talented people.





Friday, March 24, 2017

RSC17 week 12

A MIXED BAG

The main thing occupying my time and thoughts for a few days was an overnight hospital procedure.  It went better than expected and I'm glad to be home.  But I've been tired as a result so very little stitching was done.  

However, I received an unexpected and truly generous surprise.  For Cynthia's Orphan Block event I offered 18 of my HST blocks from Blossom Heart Quilts excellent tutorials. They will be going to some generous person tomorrow.  I got a lot of good experience at doing the blocks, but I'm not up to turning them into one or two quilts.  I did not realize Cynthia had a drawing for the participants until she sent me an email.  Not only had I won the drawing, but she gave me extra fabric for my Kaffe Fassett quilt project.

The prize included the latest issues of Quilty and 100 Blocks, along with two mini charm packs, perfect  for Project Linus projects.  Cynthia has a project published in both magazines.


She very generously sent me large pieces of three gorgeous fabrics of my color choice.  These will be a real help to round out the pieces for my 30 blocks (none were made this week).  


The one bit of RSC17 sewing I got done at the last minute was my pair of red 6-inch houses.  They are such fun to make.


So here I am glad this week is over, feeling fine and looking forward to April and some flowers, any flowers, PLEASE.  

I'm wishing the blessing of spring flowers for all of you this week. 

See what all the colorful scrappy fun is about this week at 
Rainbow Scrap Challenge at



Friday, March 17, 2017

RSC17 week 11

I HATE RED!!

It sounds crazy to say that and it's really about the values of red compared to other colors.  I wanted to do another Folded Box block for March to go with the others.


See the strong contrast here that gives it a 3-D effect?  You can do that with lots of colors, but not with red.  On this color chart sample you see instantly that all the other colors have a range from light to dark, but look at red.  Blah, nada, only ONE value.  


So I can't make a Folded Box this month.  I will have to substitute the pink one I made last year as a sample, which turned out very well.  That's the end of my rant about red.
  I did make two red Geese Migration blocks, one using more rosy red to get some variety.



SUMMER QUILT

I'm making great progress on these blocks, have18 out of 30 finished.  Some folks said they would like to see more of them at once, so here is a selection.  The blocks are super simple with only five seams in the 12.5 inch block.  Most blocks have red/orange/lavender to join up for sashing and the outer ones will have a gorgeous red print for the entire border.

 





I love these Kaffe Fassett fabrics and can't wait to use it on my own bed.  Perhaps it will be so bright I won't be able to get to sleep!  

Happy Quilt Appreciation Day to all of you.  I hope we all are able to enjoy spring very soon.  We have lots of birds, but no flowers yet.  

Why not check out all the fun posts at
 Rainbow Scrap Challenge at




Thursday, March 16, 2017

Orphan Adoption Event

In 2016 I participated in the Modern HST Sampler for nine months, producing 18 blocks, each 12.5 inches unfinished.  That was as far as I was able to go due to family events.  They were done following the Rainbow Scrap Challenge two colors a month, so the colors are varied, but can be grouped into smaller units.






These are typical blocks of the group.  

I would like to offer them to anyone in the US who wants them, to make for charity or not, your choice.  
With this large size and some sashing one or two quilts can be made easily, and if you have a longarm it could be an easy project.

I live in Madison  WI area and will split the shipping costs for anyone in the US.  The winner will be chosen by random number drawing.  I will keep this open until Saturday, March 25. The drawing will be held on Sunday, March 26 and shipped after we agree on these points.  

If you are a no reply blogger, please put your email address in your comment.

I'm entering this in the linkup for Orphan Blocks at 



Friday, March 10, 2017

RSC17 week 10

NEW HOUSES

This week I got so excited when I read a post from Nell about some improv houses made the stack-and-whack  way.  She directed me to The Stash Bee, June Hive 9 tutorial.  Starting with four different 10-in squares, the cutting is done freehand.  In no time I had made a set of four wonky houses, which I love, love, love. 


Last night I made another set in reds for March RSC.


They finish at 8.5 inches square, which is a size I've used for 16-patch and improv blocks last year.  I plan on combining them with some blocks like that.  These don't replace my 6.5-inch houses to go with my little boats.  Why do these projects keep mutiplying so fast?  

I also made my March crayon strip.  I'm including some rosy colors as well, not really pink.



On Monday I took my Farm Boy quilt to show at Monona Quilters.  Everyone liked the double-sided Project Linus quilt, especially here in Wisconsin with so many children living on or acquainted with farms.  



I also volunteered to make a neonatal flannel blanket that is already precut.  

My stack of Kaffe Fassett blocks for my Summer quilt is now up to 14 of the 30 needed.  This is the one I made this morning after pondering the choices overnight.  I love the roses, but the companion fabrics were harder to decide on.  When you get it right, it just sings to you.


Meanwhile I am in charge of our senior complex second Show and Tell Quilt Event.  Folks bring their family quilts and tell us the stories about them.  The one three years ago was a big success and the population here has changed, so there will be other quilts and stories.  My goal is to make people aware of the treasures they have and be able to pass them along to their families.

I hope each of you is able to make someone aware of our quilt gems this month.

Why not check out all the fun posts at
 Rainbow Scrap Challenge at