Monday, March 25, 2013

Red Tailed Hawk


Florida is a whole lot warmer than the rest of the country, but it sure is soggy.  I spent most of the weekend under a desk lamp sewing feathers on my new bird project.  Then I ran out of the right color of fabric for my feathers, so yesterday I dyed some more fabric.  I had forgotten what a strenuous process it is- about halfway through yesterday I was already sick of it.  Tonight I am washing all the dye out.  Here are some of the new fabrics:

The bottom two are twist-dyed.  Most of them I was trying to make striped for the primary and secondary feathers in the wings.  They were accordion folded and dyed.  There are also a couple that were shibori dyed that are still in the rinse cycle.  Here is a close up of one of the patterns:

Here is the bird in process- the parts I have put together are laying on the giant photo I blew up and am using as a pattern.  Hopefully I will have enough choices now to get another couple of layers of feathers put together.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Rainy, Rainy Weekend

So the next couple of quilt tops getting sent off to mom are finished.  Suzie's Denouement is the quilt I copied from Karen from my small group in Texas.... I seem to remember her saying something about "she just whipped this out" when she brought it for show and tell. I have since decided that was SARCASM.  I love the look of this quilt but it took forever to put the blocks together.

Karen also helped me pick out the fabrics during Suzie's going out of business sale...  wouldn't you know that I would get into the reproduction quilts about the time the best reproduction store was closing?  The background colors we chose were originally black and red.  I ended up making this 108" square and didn't have enough fabric when I got to Florida.  The little quilt shop down the street, Cinnamon's, has a beautiful selection and I got the rust and purple fabrics there.  I ordered the backing from Backside Fabrics- unfortunately the purple is back ordered so mom gets a short reprieve until it arrives!  (I have ordered a couple of backs from them- they have fabric 118" wide!) I changed the pattern of the top a little- I think Karen had the diagonals in the sixteen patches going the same way as the background stripes.  I put mine crossways to get that secondary "X" formation.

Someone please explain to me why when you put a quilt down to take a photo, any animal in the house must immediately lay down in the middle of it?  Caleb just had surgery to take out one of his giant molars which had gone bad, but is doing fine.  I'm not sure he even noticed they did anything, except that I have been feeding him all kinds of good soft food which he is enjoying.

This is my Twist & Shout quilt- it is a variation of the Australian Odyssey pattern from Deezigner Quilts.  I had got the pattern and the fabric from the Dallas Quilt show a couple of years ago.  (The quilt is much prettier than the picture on the front of the pattern, by the way!)  The dyed fabric I purchased to use with this was light on one selvage, shading to dark on the opposite selvage. I thought this would make a cool shaded pattern but when I went to sew the strips on the pattern I was just a little short!  So the last row in every color is some type of modern pattern in the same color scheme.  I also left my blocks horizontal instead of in the diamond shape.

Now to go figure out which is the next UFO to be moved to mom's list!

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Starting from Scratch

It has been forever since I have been out here to blog- one of the reasons being that last year was volatile to say the least. One of the things that happened is that I got laid off from the bank again.  This seems to be a recurring theme for anyone with a banking career.  As it turns out, they sold my department off to another bank which allowed me to keep my job.  On the down side, my job relocated to Jacksonville, FL and I left all my brother and all my friends behind.

It took a while but mostly I am done feeling sorry for myself about it.  After things calmed down a bit, I noticed that I didn't really get any quilting done at all last year.  My brother did get me started on drawing with pastels, and I did manage to get some of those pictures completed.  But no quilts.

So this year I am planning on getting things done.  Hopefully I will manage to get it all out here where you can see it and I can keep track of it better. I am sort of cheating to start off with- about the time of my last blog, Mom acquired a long-arm quilting machine.  It had some issues getting started which seem to be sorted out now.  So I have sent her a pile of quilt tops to practice on.  Do you suppose it is cheating getting your UFOs done if you assign the work to someone else?

This scrap quilt is made from the 4-patch swap blocks that I made with my Binding Friends quilt group in 2008.  I guess it is taking me a little while to get some of these done.  I think the alternate pinwheels were the spare blocks that I made for the 2010 APQ online group.  Anyway, mom quilted this for me and I just recently got the binding and label on it.

I updated my Embird embroidery software to get the label done.  I hate making labels, but if you put all that work into a quilt then I think you should put a really good label on it.

So that would be the first quilt completed for the year.