Machine quilting continues

Sunday

Returned to machine quilting. I did 4 orphan blocks, a little on my baby quilt and made 2 cat bags filled with small scraps.

So worked on some circles and fillers on the baby quilting.

Monday

Today decided to try circle swirls. Spent about 10 minutes warming up with them and it clicked! At least the basic ones. Now the brain need to work on doing them opposite direction and eliminate getting caught some place you cannot get out. Overall I was pleased. Did 4 orphan blocks today. I thought I had run out but found 2 more orphan blocks. So I spent some time sandwiching some other blocks and small table toppers. Once I get these done I have a few smaller quilts really to machine quilt. Getting the hang of this.

Did not work on the baby quilt as I wanted to do the sandwiching.

We attended a great Fireman’s corn roast with great music. We also played bingo. It is a smaller sized event and very comfortable. The corn was great! Sunday our church had its first outdoor service/picnic with musical family presenting the service. Food was roasted pig and turkey with the trimmings. They could have used another tent for shade but that will be on the list for next year. Food was excellent! Tomorrow tires have to be rotated and we will take in a movie. So enjoying our weather right now.

Finally got the solar approved by electric company, it we will hold off until monsoons are done. A showing this Saturday and we also looked at a house, too big for us and a little outside our desired area.

Happy Quilting to all!

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Machine Quilting continued…

The humid weather is gone after a few thunderstorms last evening. Perfect breeze off the lake. I even went for my usual walk.

Back to machine quilting today. After a warm up jumped right into my orphan blocks. I think these are from some book, maybe nearly insane, but seem a little too big for them. Oh well make great practice blocks. Yesterday I made a post it note to remember to change my stitch length and width, I obviously did not put it where I could see it as it was a bit before I dropped my length down. Today put it right by the foot.

The ones on the right are the first 2 and I wanted to focus on loops of different size and focus. Also threw in a few string loops. I was fairly please with those. The next two blocks I noted would be for purses. Jagged glass pattern was ok, would need to work on that one again and other block a few pebbles which also were ok. I decided that was enough of the blocks so have two for tomorrow. (We might be taking car in for rotation and maybe a movie).

Next up is my baby blanket. In outlined the elephant which is good practice following a line or design. It is a bit harder than it looks. So worked on some fillers for hat and spots.

Pebbles and kind of a circle pattern. I guess both were ok and will probably do the rest the same way. I changed top thread to yellow, thicker thread and it was ok. Started breaking and changed needle and that did the trick. For some reason more difficult to stay in the confined area, but possible I was getting a bit tired. So stopped. I am thinking the white background will be some kind of filler. Overall was pretty good and back just a few area of thread backing up. Again right size to do domestic machine quilting. I am using some grip it’s that take place of gloves and they work well. It is just when I stop I have to manually put needle down, not automatic on this machine. Some say you can time the foot pedal to stop with the needle down, but does not work on my machine or with me trying, so takes a little time.

Until next time…

Happy Quilting!

Quilting stitches

Another day of machine quilting. After a warm up I returned to my orphan blocks. So had some hints on meandering and decided to dedicate two blocks to that type of quilting. I guess just relaxing is part of the key. They felt better and maybe looked better. So today I am quite pleased with them. It looks like the next few blocks I designated for purses so decided that it would be best to use walking foot to set the block. It also seemed better when I had a defined space to work within. So took off the free motion foot and on goes the walking foot. I needed practice on really stitching in the ditch and staying to the light fabric. So that was good. I completed 6 blocks to be ready for tomorrow.

Here is today’s accomplishments-

So front and back, one area of bunched up thread, but that is ok. I also ran across some quilting books I got a few years ago and now plan to use them as inspiration for other quilting designs. I have been following “Penguin and Fish” and her learning on live Facebook working on her first domestic machine quilt. Have picked up a few things as she is learning.

While I had the walking foot on I pulled out one of the baby panels I brought back to practice my machine quilting. There were 3 of these panels input into kits. We also had some flannel for the back and decided it really did not need batting. So I sprayed the top and sandwiched it to the back. I quilting around it and-sort of the inside border. Decided to use my very light lavender thread. I am thinking I might do one or two items on the panel and play around with quilting patterns. That will be fun.

I am also thinking that probably no one took the other kits, so might be able to do another one. This size is more manageable that a larger twin size, so good to start on this one.

So tomorrow the 6 blocks as they go fast and then maybe the elephant.

Happy Quilting!

Day one dedicated machine quilting

Wanted to share my machine quilting. I have tried this several times in the past. This past winter one of the Quilters gave an excellent workshop on machine quilting and I picked up some great tips and inspiration. As mentioned prior also following some gals on the internet/blog regarding quilting.

A few weeks ago I started quilting a small topper. It is certainly “free” motion and really is a learning topper. Goal today was to finish it. I only really had the outside blocks to quilt. I am using some polyester thread I picked up rather cheap. I also purchased a lot of top stitch needles that were recommended due to their large eyes and prevent thread breakage. Using the same thread on top and bottom. It is a light lavender but looks clear or silver.

First up is the topper made from scrap batiks.

So I worked on a few things. Meandering, I just cannot do those puzzle pieces, but like doing circles in both directions. The longer loops, working on consistency and size. Even did a few kind of flower designs. With time I was improving.

Next up are some orphan blocks that will be pot holders or parts of purse makings.

Front above, back below.

I do like the wiggly lines. So by end of day pretty good. Took a mid morning break for exercise and take hubby out for his birthday. Nice break in between.

Thing I learned…when thread begins to break….change needle.

Marine daughter called, she is starting her schooling this Wednesday her first class. It will last 1.5 months then two week break and then next class. So she is excited to be moving on. 105 degrees in TX.

Tomorrow we are headed to our favorite wine tasting place “VonKlaus” which pairs food with wine. We are also doing an afternoon hike at a nearby state park with picnic lunch. Probably no quilting tomorrow.

We also have decided that if we get an offer on condo, will put things in storage and move to a month to month furnished place until we can find a place. We really want to stay in the Green Lake area that has so much to do. Still leaning toward another condo in that area. With that being said most of quilting stuff would go into storage. Maybe that would force me to machine quilt all those UFO.s 🙂

Happy Quilting!

Oh those WASPS…

I guess it is that time of year, the dreaded wasps. We spent a day at my folks and I ran out the front door with the phone for my husband and got stung on my left middle finger. Boy that hurt! But I washed and iced it right away. It has been many years since I got bit. It was ok until later that evening, boy did it swell up. The next few days the remaining fingers also swelled up and progressed to hand. I tried everything, ice, calamine lotion, baking soda, drugs and nothing seemed to help. Decided to go to urgent care on Friday as no openings at my doctor. I was worried about a cellulitis setting in. We doctor said it was a venum reaction. Can it do anything. So continued to nurse it and by latter that day it started to improve. Today just very minor swelling present. But boy can this put a dent in your sewing/quilting! One day it was so bad that I just laid out some string blocks that I had just removed the paper backing. These scraps were from a gal that did a lot of paper piecing and had left overs in a fairly large bin. So this is what I came up with…

I did move that lower green blocks and purple ones a bit. So it is stacked and ready to sew together. Might make a good free motion quilting project when I am more confident.

My plan was to start machine quilting this week but that was out on hold. Now I will start it this week. Following several gals and really want to work on this. Today after sewing I cleaned up my sewing area to change over to quilting. I have a lot of practice pieces so that is this week’s goal.

I have been doing the Camp Odea May QAL. It is fun and now that it is getting bigger a bit more time. I have not put on this weeks boarder as I am unsure what color to do. Today finished up sewing geese and corner blocks and attached to main quilt. My geese are a little funky but I was using my stash and some of the strips from jelly roll were not accurate. But that is ok. I am also thinking that this will be a machine quilting project.

Here is current progress.

If I remember correctly it is to be around 72″ so this week is probably the last week, as it is around 52″.

We continue to look at possible homes and some apartments. We finally heard that last viewing, they liked the condo but are also looking at another area and have not made a final decision yet. The market is quite hot right now, new homes added almost daily and offers accepted quickly. Right now we have to wait for an offer on our place. Hubby is in charge of daily views of new listings. Something I think he likes to do. So time will tell.

So Camp Odea May will be put aside and on to machine quilting. Will let you know how that goes. Since my sewing area is in the garage I am able to enjoy the cooler weather and breezes. So far no mosquitos or wasps in garage to bother me. Able to sit in a rocking chair near the garage door and do any pinning or reverse sewing.

Happy Quilting this week!

Spring /summer stash cleaning???

As we have our condo on the market most of my quilting things are in the garage.

I ran across a new quilter/group Holly Anne- String and Story. Check her out! She has gotten a great endorsement from Bonnie Hunter and they were on live Facebook together. Fresh and works with scraps as well has machine quilting. She currently has some classes that are free to get you quilting. I also have been following Angela Walters and her free motion videos-Quilting is my Therapy. So with two great gals and their enthusiasm I am sure to succeed! I have finally got my Schmitz needles and using top stitch needles. They have a bigger eye and should cause less thread breakage. As I am cleaning I have found several toppers and orphan blocks that will be great for practicing. If I have any goal this summer is to be more comfortable machine quilting to finally get to some of those finished quilt tops.

Yesterday I had clean out some cubby holes on a dresser top. Found some unfinished blocks and fabric so today I sewed them together. One will be a small table topper or candle mat, others will be potholders and mug rug. Yep good for practicing machine quilting. I wanted to clean and sort out top drawer of fabric. First drawer is blacks/grays and pinks/red stash. Humidity is coming back to Wisconsin so did not get quite that far. I did put a fan in the garage but did not use today. So kind of cleaned up those leader-ender scraps sitting on the side of sewing machine. I love to make four patches!

I have been trying to do a project a week. Last week I worked on updating a pattern I did in AZ on a purse/water-bottle cozie. The Sunflower Quilters will have a little competition designing their own.

Our group wanted to make them just a bit taller and with a longer strap. I made 3 of them, one for myself, my mom and for the Quilters boutique. I tried it out this past weekend when we went to Strawberry fest nearby. It worked pretty well. My mom is a Red hatter so she will enjoy her’s.

Here is her egg skirt, she will love this as well. Also finished up her batik quilt “Sugar and Spice”, so I have had some accomplishments! I have to get a picture of that. I made a matching pillow case which I will stuff with the quilt.

She has had some difficult times with rude neighbors and recently my dad had another blood clot in the lung. Had pain two weeks prior, but did not find anything. This time they found multiple clots. So now he is on blood thinners for life. Turns out it came from vein in leg, asymptotic. In and out of hospital. So we saw him in hospital on Father’s Day. Luckily caught it in time.

Finally got our daughters Marine graduation picture. She is in a holding platoon awaiting a spot for her schooling. No real assignments just night watch. Last weekend volunteered to help with boat racing which I guess is popular in TX. Called a few days ago and is in good spirits.

As for our condo no offers and no showings this week. We actually looked at a cute log cabin a little outside our desired area and certainly very private. We would need to make a few changes but it has many of the things on our list. So it is privacy vs close to city with things to do. We have joined a health club continuing with our routine in AZ. So it is a difficult decision. We think it is priced a little high, so we will wait a bit as we have no offers on our place. We looked at a condo lease option in Green Lake, but it was small and just did not feel right to me. So we will wait patiently and see what the Lord’s Will will be.

Looks like we may kayak tomorrow. We like to go across the lake and hit a bar/grill place for a bit to eat and head back home. My back has been doing very well. I don’t think I twist too much kayaking so I should be fine. Rain, cool weather and wind has prevented us taking our first voyage across the lake. Then next thing on my list is a short game of pickleball. Maybe after the humidity leaves.

So for now Happy Quilting to all!

Marine Gradation

It turns out that we are spending our last week here in AZ with triple digit temperatures! It is just plain hot. Just had air on for an hour here and there, the ceiling fans work great. Today the winds crank up leading to red flag warnings. It is very dry as the last rain was back in February and that was not much. House is cleaned and most things are packed. Spouse cannot believe we are coming back with so much. Well a girl has to take some quilting stuff back you know :). Anyway I always find some cracks as he packs where something can fit.

Graduation

So cool to be on the island early and the other recruits are already training. You can hear the cadences and the rifle shooting in the distance. We found our parking spot by 0530 and yes people were lining up for a good seat for graduation. We ran into friends that came down for Abi and they said they would save us spots and we decided to go to raising of colors. Every military base throughout the world has this special event Friday morning at the same time 0745. Well we were quite early for this so we took a walk past 4th Battalion quarter and saw the female recruits working hard. Some doing drill and some doing ammo can lifts. We walked down to one of the rivers near by than run into the ocean. By the time we got back some people were sitting down. It was a beautiful ceremony with the Marine Band playing several selections. The commander of the base was there and gave a very personal speech. Quite the funny guy. I guess he will be leaving in June for reassignment. We then walked back to the parade deck where all the celebrations were held.

Such pageantry and tradition. Was a great program about an hour. My daughter said they could not look around so did not see anything. I guess that is why they encourage you to purchase the DVD.

Abi and my spouse not eating to take pictures and she wanted to get off the island quickly. Actually it went fast. Graduation over around 10 and we returned to our town house by 1030. The she changed, repacked some of her things, threw out some things and activated her cell phone. It was so funny that if felt so foreign to her. Even going out for lunch at Buffalo Wild Wings all the TV’s overwhelmed her. No TV or music for 13 weeks. A real culture shock. Then she was eyeing everyone’s uniform and what they were doing. She of course changed into civilian clothes. We also saw how much and how quickly she ate her food. She held open the doors for people behind her. We saw a lot of little details that were engrained into her.

She has a few more days prior to leaving for Camp Pendleton for her non-infantry training that will begin early in June. She has touched based with a lot of her friends. She has probably eaten things she missed but also has worked out. We came back to AZ. We both picked up a cold and hoping it will leave us prior to our west trip.

Happy nurses week to one of my daughters and Happy Teachers week to the other.

Welcome to new gals following my blog!

I am very close to finishing the hand quilting on my mom’s quilt. May start the borders on our trip.

Our first stop is Sedona on Sunday. Happy Mother’s Day to all!