Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Veranda Views BOM Block Three

I just checked and the new installment of the Veranda Views BOM is on the site, but I couldn’t see the link to down-load it. I probably just didn’t look in the right place. Will check again in a bit. Anyway……..I realized that I hadn’t posted a pic of the last block. So here it is. These little blocks are such fun to do. I like the feeling of having finished something, even though it is just a part of something larger.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Quilting in Strips

A couple of readers have asked how I quilt in strips, so I will do my best to show how I do it. Before I begin, I must tell you that I am lousy at explaining things. Maybe this will help me learn to be better at it. I hope...........

First I will show you the quilt I am talking about. It was quilted in four strips. The first strip is the row of piano keys, plus two blocks long and the width of the quilt. The second is just two blocks long and the width of the quilt, and the next strip is the same. The last one is the same as the first, only with the piano keys on the bottom instead of the top.

Next you need to quilt the strips. On the first one you would quilt it to the edges, except for the edge that will be joined to the next strip. On that edge you would leave enough room to be able to quilt in that unfinished edge. I usually quilt in a fairly large meander, so I leave about 3 inches or so unquilted along that edge.

On the next strip you quilt all the way to the ends of the strip, but you would leave the long edges on both sides unquilted for the same three or so inches. Are you with me so far? Now it is time for another picture………

Take both strips that you have quilted, this picture shows one of the strips, and along both unfinished long edges, fold back and pin the batting and backing out of the way. Now with right sides of the two strips together, and matching seams where needed, pin and sew that long seam.

After the seam is sewn, I press that seam open as well as I can. I think it helps reduce the bulk of the seam, and makes it lay flatter. I then press the right side of the quilt where the seam is so everything is smooth and flat.
This picture shows the quilt, right side down and the backing and batting with the pins removed. The first strip is at the top and I have smoothed out the quilt and then smoothed the backing and batting of the first strip down over the seam just made.

Now I smooth the batting from the strip I am adding to the top strip, and there is about a half inch of batting that needs to be trimmed so that the batting from strip one and strip two butt up against each other. My trimming is never exact. A little over-lapping is better than cutting away to much and you wind up with a gap between the two strips of batting. Don’t ask how I learned that.

After the batting is trimmed from the second strip and butted up against the batting of the first strip, smooth out the backing from second strip over the top strip. Turn under and finger press a quarter inch on the edge of the backing on the second strip. Pin to the first strip, taking care to keep everything smooth. If you pull too much on the backing to pin it in place, the front will not be smooth and you will get puckers when you go to finish up the quilting around the seam. After you have it pinned, check the front to see if it looks nice and yes, smooth. If it looks right to you, you are ready to sew the seam joining the two backing fabrics together. I use the ladder stitch to do this. This link shows you how to do it, if you are unfamiliar with that stitch. Ladder Stitch. I hold the quilt in my lap, and pinch up a bit of the quilt in my left hand, sew that portion, then grab another pinch of quilt and continue across until I have the seam finished. Then you flip that puppy over and finish the quilting where the two pieces are joined together. Go through that process two more times and your are ready to put on the binding. Of course you can make your sections any size you want, and make the sections go side to side or up and down. Whew! I think it was harder for me to write about it than it was to actually do it! I hope I have explained how I do this in a way that can be understood. If there is something not clear to you, let me know and I will do my best to explain it better. Wow! I think I have just written my first, and probably my last, tutorial...............Oh, yes. If you click on the pictures you can see larger versions.....

Saturday, March 21, 2009

A tisket a tasket block for March

I finished the march block from the bunny hill bom. It won't be long before the next one is ready. I wonder what the one for April will be. How would you draw an "April shower"?

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

String Quilt

I have been busy during the day doing some meandering on my string quilt. I had this first strip finished over a year ago, before I fell and broke my shoulder and pelvis. I only have one more strip to do before I start joining them together. I can’t wrestle with a whole quilt, so Kathy and I quilt our quilts this way. I was thinking I would send them all off to a local long arm quilter, but when I got my flannel quilt back from her, I decided I would do them myself. I was not happy with her work. Mine is far from perfect, but a least my edges come out straight.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

A Touch of Spring

What strange weather we are having. Near 80 degrees on Sunday and now on Tuesday night they say it is supposed to get down to 25 degrees. Kathy’s Bradford pear is about to bloom and it will probably be ruined for this year. I picked some daffodils, hyacinths and a few sprigs of forsythia yesterday. I am going to pick the rest of the flowers this afternoon. I might as well have them inside instead of leaving them to freeze. I am showing a picture of the bouquet I made yesterday. I had to get out my favorite vase to put them in. LOL…

Friday, March 6, 2009


Thank goodness we are not issued fines for not posting frequently. I know I couldn't afford the fines I would incur! These are some lousy scans of the pincushions I made the last couple of days. They were made by the English paper peicing method. I appliqued them on to a charm square after I sewed the peices together. I had never tried it before and it was fun! The pincushions are four and half inches. I filled them with walnut bird litter, which I read about on a blog somewhere. I found it at Pet Smart. It gives a nice weight to the pincushions. When I have my 100th post giveaway, one of these will be a part of it.