Monday, October 22, 2018

Design Wall Monday - October 22, 2018

My design wall today has a new doll quilt made as a replica of an old one in the Metro Museum of Art.  I am writing this post Sunday afternoon, because on Monday morning, I will be flying to Virginia to meet with the Churn Dashers.

Here is a new doll quilt top, which now measures 21 by 21 inches, before quilting and binding:

The blocks finish at 5 inches square, and the measurements to make the block are as follows:

The larger block, which I talked about last week, finishes at 10 inches square and is explained (Here).  I took those measurements and modified them to make a 5 inch block.  The outside three triangles on each side of the block and the four corner triangles are where I wanted a little "wiggle" room in case my seams weren't exactly 1/4 inch, so those pieces are cut a little bit bigger, and hopefully, there will be no problems when trimming it to 5.5 inches at the end.

Colored fabric for the ten chimney "bricks"  
Two pieces 1 3/8 by 3 1/8 inches
Six pieces   1 3/8 by 2 1/4 inches
Two pieces 1 3/8 by 1 3/8 inches

Background Kona Snow pieces:
One piece 1 3/8 by 3 1/8 inches 
Two pieces 1 3/8 by 1 3/8 inches
The above three pieces form the center "cross".
Background Kona Snow edge pieces:
To create the twelve side triangles:
Cut three squares 2 1/2 by 2 1/2 and then cut them from corner to corner twice, giving you twelve triangles with the straight of grain on the outside longer edge.
Cut two squares 1 3/4 by 1 3/4 and cut them from one corner to another, yielding four triangles with the straight of grain on the two shorter sides of the triangle.

Assemble the block as per the pictures at the link above, and trim it to 5.5 by 5.5 inches.

The inspiration doll quilt that is in the Metro Museum of Art was made in 1852 by Ella Mygatt Whittlesey.   It is completely hand stitched and quilted.  Also, Ella was seven years old when she made it, just a few years younger than this 75 year old blogger!  Her quilt measures 26 x 24 3/4 inches.

Here's also a closeup of one of my five inch squares.  I used the stripe in the opposite direction as I did on the ten inch block of the same fabric (see last week's blog post pictures).   As you can see, my outer corners of the colored parts are getting cut off a little bit in the seams, so I hope the addition of "wiggle" room in the measurements I give you above will eliminate that.  If you make nine blocks, and they all trim to the same size, it doesn't matter if they are 5.5 by 5.5 or some other measurement close to that.  After all, it's just a doll quilt.   So easy a seven year old can make it!

Well, what's on your design wall this morning?  It has been so noice seeing all of your design walls.  What's "noice"?  A new word this week spoken to me by a grandson.  It means "Beyond the boundaries and exceeding the limits of nice.  Spoken with emphasis when describing something particularly awesome."   That fits your links to my blog.

If you'd like to linkup, please mention this particular blog post somewhere within your blog post.  Thanks!

Monday, October 15, 2018

Design Wall Monday - October 15, 2018

This week I have something on my Design Wall!  Yeah for me!  I'm getting ready to exchange Chimney Sweep blocks (also called Album Blocks) with my fellow Churn Dashers in Virginia.  I am making four blocks each for eight different individuals, so 32 blocks were made this week.  I love this block!  It went together beautifully.

Here is a picture of the 32 blocks on my design wall.  They are 10.5 by 10.5 unfinished size (except for the little one at the top, which I will talk about later).

Closeup of two of the blocks:

It's a great block to show off stripes and beautiful civil war repros, and I can't wait to see the blocks I will get in the exchange next week.  Patience is not one of my virtues.

If you would like to make this block, the directions are on the internet in several places.  This block finishes at 10 inches, and I used the tutorial/directions found (Here)  For our block exchange, we are using Kona Snow for the white parts.

Did you notice the little block at the top of my design wall?  I had to try a small block, that finishes at 5 inches.   I made that one because I needed a break from all of these big 10 inch blocks.  I am so used to making small blocks, and it was fun to make this one.

To make a block  1/2 the size of the directions, all you have to do is follow these three steps:

(1) subtract 1/4 inch from every side of the big block directions for each piece that is in the block.

(2) divide the resulting measurement in half.

(3) add back 1/4 inch to every side of the new smaller directions.

Next week,  I will give you the directions for the smaller size, if anyone is interested, as I've already done the math......and some quilters don't like math.

What's on your design wall this Monday?

Please link back to this particular blog post somewhere within your blog post today.  Thanks!

Monday, October 8, 2018

Desgn Wall Monday - October 8, 2018

This was a good week for quilting.  I  started on some chimney sweep blocks that I'm making for an exchange with the Churn Dasher group in Virginia.  Here is the first completed block:

This block will finish at 10 inches square, and it's important to cut the outside triangle pieces so that straight of grain is on the outside edges of the whole block.  Otherwise, it would have a tendency to stretch out of square.

I made this sample block to be sure of my cutting and sewing measurements for the block.  After this one turned out just fine, I have cut the white parts for the remaining blocks.  Today I will have fun "shopping" in my stash for the dark and medium fabrics to make the rest of the blocks.

Here is the way I assembled it:  First I laid it out on a mat, in the way it would be sewn.  I sewed each row, returning the completed rows to the mat, to keep the block in order on the mat.  I left the corners for later:

Then I sewed row to row to row.  The four corners were the last parts to add to the assembled block:

It is now trimmed to 10.5 by 10.5, and I am working this week on the rest of the blocks.  I should have them all on my design wall next Monday to show to you.

It's fresh apple time here in Michigan and today I made an easy apple crisp.  It is cooked in the microwave, for 6-7 minutes, so is very easy to make.  Recipe is on the internet:  (microwave apple crisp recipe)  I don't cover it with wax paper, but the rest of the instructions are very similar to my old recipe.

Yummy!  Well, that's what's going on here......what's going on at your house?  What is on your design wall this Monday?  I can't wait to see all the pictures.

You know the drill, please refer back to this particular blog post somewhere within your blog post.  Thanks!

Monday, October 1, 2018

Design Wall Monday - October 1, 2018

It was so good to be back to quilting, and I made hanging sleeves and quilt labels for seven doll quilts that will be in a quilt show in Virginia next spring.  I am going to Virginia later this month, and want to leave them with the Churn Dasher's Group when I meet with them.

Two of the quilts are from Lori Dejarnett's blog quilt-a-longs.  Her blog ( is having another doll quilt group project coming up this week.  I think the first part of the instructions come out this Wednesday.  I am planning to participate, it's always fun.

This one below was a quilt she called "Mid-Winter Blues".  I renamed it "Raggedy Ann's Doll Quilt", as it looks great with my Raggedy Ann and Andy dolls.  It's 20.5 inches by 20.5 inches square.

The next one is also from her blog, and she named it "Abundance".  I also kept that name for it.  It is 10.5 inches by 10.5 inches.

Last week started off Monday evening with Miss Penny going to the emergency room, but the issue was resolved quickly.  It was a bad ear infection and possibly also an allergic reaction to something, but she's all better now.  The only sign that she had some trauma is the two shaved patches on her ears (her ears were swollen up, and they had to be drained).  She is as good as new now, though.  She's on benadryl for a little while longer, and ear drops for the ear infection.  Nothing phases a labrador!  She is 47 pounds now, and still growing.

But back to quilts:   Here are three pictures showing all seven quilts on my coffee table (my design wall today):

The hanging sleeves are four inches deep, and must be the width of the quilt.  The labels are made on my computer printer.  I first cut fabric and freezer paper to the size of a piece of computer paper (8.5 by 11).  I then iron them together, and sew a line of stitching near the top of the 8.5 end.  The line of stitching keeps the two pieces together while they are feeding through the printer.  I only feed one through the printer at a time, to keep from having printer problems.

I use Microsoft Word software and prepare the label info, choosing a font that I like.  These were printed two per 8.5 by 11 sheet, and after coming out of the printer, I iron them again.  I cut off the line of stitching that is holding the freezer paper to the fabric, and then pull the freezer paper off.  The fabric labels are then cut to size and stitched to the back of the doll quilts, easy peasy.

Here are two of the labels shown up close:

What are you working on this week?  Please show us what's on your Design Wall.  The only request I have is that you refer back to this particular blog post somewhere within your blog post.  Thanks for joining in!

Monday, September 24, 2018

Design Wall Monday - September 24, 2018

Another week with not much going on for the Design Wall.  I am concentrating on quilting projects today and tomorrow, so I should have some progress to show you next week.

A non-quilting job just finished is a new sweater for a little bear.  I bought this little bear in an antique shop last year, and he wore a brown striped sweater with a red heart.  Adorable.   When I got him home, I noticed several moth holes in the back of the sweater.  I took it off, and threw it away.  I was glad there were no moth holes in the little bear.  He has been sweater-less until my recent project of making Christmas stockings for our son's family.  While on a road trip up north, I had the yarn for the Christmas project with me, and made him a red, green and white sweater, using the yarn I had with me.  Perfect for little bear, and he is now sitting on our fireplace mantle, looking very pleased with his new sweater.

This week I accomplished some mending jobs.  I hate to brings me no joy.  But it is necessary sometimes.  As some of you know, I am responsible for my younger sister who is now 70 years old.  Due to some of her healh issues, she has lost some weight, and was safety pinning her pants at the waistband to keep them from falling down.  I took one pair of new pants that fit her home with me (as a guide) and seven pair of pants too big in the waist when I visited her Thursday.  I took them home to Grand Rapids, and used elastic from my stash, and fixed them all.  When I mentioned to my sister's older son that I was doing some mending for her......he said, "Would you do a couple of mending jobs for me too?"   So I did those two jobs too, a pair of shorts and a dog harness....As I said before, no joy.   I wonder why I get no joy from mending or alterations to clothing.  Do you?

The quilting projects I have for this week are binding on three quilts, labels and hanging sleeves for five others, so I should have some nice finishes for you next Monday.  We are down to only our own dog and no company, so quilting will happen and I am looking forward to spending time on quilts.

What is on your design wall today?

You know what to do to link up!  All I ask is that you refer back to this particular blog post somewhere within your blog post.  Thanks!

Monday, September 17, 2018

Design Wall Monday - September 17, 2018

This week I picked up this quilt from my longarm machine quilter.  It's a quilt that I've blogged about before.  Read my first post ( Here )   Named "Hearts and Apron Strings".

The quilt is designed by Sharon Schamber and the directions were in a series of Quiltmaker's Newsletter Magazines fourteen years ago.  I am so glad it is getting finished.  

The quilt was started by someone else, and is being finished by me.  I still have the binding to put on it.

We have had company most of the week, and I've been taking care of a neighbor's dog, plus training our own not much being worked on in the quilt room.  This cartoon made me laugh this week, so true for me....

Every week I think I will have more time to look at all of the linked blogs, and comment on all your projects, and I don't.  I failed greatly this past week, and I am sorry.  I will try again this coming week.

Please show everyone what you are working on, and what is on your design wall this Monday.  It's open to anyone with a quilting blog, to link up and let us in on your progress.  All I ask is that you link back to this particular blog post somewhere within your blog post.  Thanks!

Monday, September 10, 2018

Design Wall Monday - September 10, 2018

Well not quilting, but I did do some hand work this week.  I've been knitting Christmas stockings for my son's family and I'm almost finished with the final four.  I have to add hanging loops at the top, and line the stockings with muslin, add some buttons to the gingerbread man, and then I will have this project finished!  It will be good to get back to quilting again.

We've had heavy rainstorms, lightening, and thunder up at the cabin.  I took three pictures of different parts of the same tree in our woods, where lightening struck the tree.  There is a six to eight inch strip of bark missing where the jolt went down the trunk to the bottom.  Such power!

 Top of the tree

On down the tree

To the forest floor!

Design Wall Monday is upon us again, and I welcome any quilter to join in the picture show.  Please refer back to this particular blog post of mine, somewhere within your blog post.  Thanks for sharing!  You make my Mondays fun.  I hope you did more quilting that I did this week!

Monday, September 3, 2018

Design Wall Monday - September 3, 2018

Happy Labor Day!

Labor Day - a holiday to celebrate workers and their accomplishments!  What have you been working on this week? 

I apologize for the late posting last Monday, but the weather has caused lots of power outages here, and we were without power last Monday.  It's been stormy all week, and DH the golfer, has struggled to play golf (his "work").  Luckily for quilters, the weather doesn't dictate whether we can quilt or not - unless the power goes out.   Even then it doesn't stop those of you who have treadle machines!  Life is good.

Thanks for your input on my little nine patch quilt.  I've decided to use the first option of striped sashing, and have not picked out the cornerstone fabric yet. 

 Perhaps another cheddar fabric with a little flower that I can fussy cut.  Slow progress, but I've been working on a knitted Christmas stocking project for most of last week, and quilting will resume this week.

We have more pupa/chrysalis stage Monarch butterflies on the cabin porch this year than any previous year.  Here is a picture of three that decided one spot was the best location, and they lined up three in a row.  They are attached to the front porch ceiling and are out of the weather.  There are 7 chrysalises this year on the porch.  Last year there were only two, so 7 makes me happy.

I'm looking forward to seeing your pictures this week.  Design Wall Mondays is open to all quilters, just include a link to this particular blog post of mine somewhere within your blog post.  Thanks!

Monday, August 27, 2018

Design Wall Monday - August 27, 2018

Well, we have been without power since 11:00 last night, and now have power at 2:00 PM, Monday afternoon.   So sorry for the late posting of Design Wall Monday.  No blog post happens.

I will get right to it, and get this post up and running.  What have you been working on this week?  I am looking forward to seeing pictures, please.  The rules are the same, just link somewhere within your blog post back to this particular blog post of mine, and everything will work fine.

Next week I shall update you on what I've been doing.  Thanks for linking up with me, even though I'm late today.

Monday, August 20, 2018

Design Wall Monday - August 20, 2018

This week I am working on a doll quilt using cheddar nine patches.  I am looking into four different layouts.  What do you think?

Option 1:

Use a striped fabric to create a fussy cut sashing and add fussy cut cornerstones. (cornerstones to be determined)

Option 2:

Use a cheddar print for plain squares and set the quilt on point.

Option 3:

Use white as sashing or as alternate squares for a simpler look.

Option 4:

More simple, as three is, but on point.

Let me know what you think - or if you think of any other possibilities. Thanks!

Today is Design Wall Monday, and I am looking forward to seeing what you have on your design wall.  The rules are simple - please link back to this particular blog post somewhere within your blog post.  The coffee is brewing and I am going to sit out on the deck with a cup of coffee, while looking at your creations this morning.

Hubby is out golfing this morning, and I have to brag about him - yesterday he won the Manistee National Senior Golf Championship.  He loves to golf as much as I love to quilt!

Penny Lane is 40 pounds!  We can't believe it, but it is so.  She loves to chew on sticks, and up here at the cabin, there are plenty of sticks in the yard.  She sat in the hammock with me yesterday afternoon and chewed on sticks for about half an hour.  Life is good!

Monday, August 13, 2018

Design Wall Monday - August 13, 2018

Here's a picture of a finished redwork quilt, taken on the bench on my front porch:

Years and years and years ago, my friend Dee embroidered a set of squares in redwork.  She completed all the embroidery except for the French knots.  She didn't like to do French knots, or didn't know how to make them, I can't remember which.  But I did all the French knots for the squares, and then Dee gave them to me to make something out of them.  When I told her yesterday that I was finishing the old project, she couldn't even remember doing the squares.

Years and years ago, I made red and white double nine patches for them, and joined the project into a quilt top.  It is not large enough for a bed, but larger than a normal wall hanging......maybe it could be a table topper.  Or used on a couch.

Closeups of squares:

For many years it sat in the unfinished projects pile.  This year, I took it to my long-arm quilter, and it is now quilted with an allover pattern.  This week, I found the binding I had made years ago (which is a miracle, if I do say so myself) and it is now bound and ready for a label and hanging sleeve.

You can't see any of this from a galloping horse, but here's some workmanship details:  It is 55 inches square, give or take a 1/2 or 3/4 inch.  The embroidered squares are about 7 1/4 inches and the red squares in the nine patches are about 3/4 inch finished.  The math then calculates out to nine patches which are 2 1/4 square, and three across would be 6 3/4 inches for one double nine patch.....not matching up with the embroidered squares of 7 1/4 inches at all, but as I said before......this was a long long, long time ago.  I can see how much I have improved in seam accuracy and in piecing.  But finished is better than perfect on any day, right?

Here is a current picture of Miss Penny Lane, who is now about 30 pounds.  She is so much fun and has made me get outside and walk much more than I did before I had a dog, so she is good for my health.  Plus all around fun every day.

It's Design Wall Monday!  What are you going to show us today?  I love to see everyone's design walls.  Today I am going to pour a cup of coffee, and enjoy the sight.  Thank you all for participating.

The rules are simple - if you would like to link up with Design Wall Monday, please refer back to this particular blog post somewhere within your post.  I am going to try to comment more this week on your projects, too.  

Monday, August 6, 2018

Design Wall Monday - August 6, 2018

Hello Bloggers!  I am looking forward to seeing what you have been working on this week.  It's been beautiful weather in Michigan - 70's with lots of sunshine.  I've been working away on my redwork, with not much progress because it's been so nice outside.  Wednesday we hiked (two miles out and two miles back) to the Big Sable Lighthouse in the Ludington State Park.  You can climb the winding stairs to the top, and the view is incredible.   We took our daughter and three grandchildren out there on a beautiful day, nice breeze and not too hot.

What have you been up to?  I am just now getting to sit down at the computer and look at last Monday's Design Walls, as I've had company all last week.  I hope to catch up with you in working on my quilts this week.  Thanks for participating!  

If you'd like to link with Design Wall Monday, please link back to this particular post somewhere within your blog post.  I appreciate it.  Happy Design Wall Monday!

Monday, July 30, 2018

Design Wall Monday - July 30, 2018

My design wall today is the floor in the front hallway:

I am looking at progress on the redwork quilt.  The four borders around the outside are slowly getting finished.  The last time I looked at progress on them was a year ago in (this) post:

Border #1  10 flowers  - finished
Border #2    8 flowers  - 2 to go
Border #3    5 flowers  - 5 to go
Border #4    2 flowers  - 8 to go

I am guessing that there will be 40 flowers in all, 10 per side, and the count is now:

Border #1  10 flowers  - finished
Border #2    9 flowers  - 1 to go
Border #3    6 flowers  - 4 to go
Border #4    3 flowers  - 7 to go

So last July, there were 15 flowers to go, and now there are 12.  At this rate of three flowers a year, it will be four more years before the borders are complete.  But if not very fast, I am at least persistent!  It will get finished, and as was said in one of the opinions on a recent post:  Each quilt has a time to be born, and will be finished when the time is right for it to be finished.

There are 64 inner redwork blocks, and 58 are complete, with 6 to go.  I am getting there!

What is on your design wall today?  It is so enjoyable for me to sit down with a cup of coffee, and browse through the posts to see what you all are doing.  Thank you for participating!  As you know, to participate, please refer to this particular blog post somewhere within your design wall blog post.  

Monday, July 23, 2018

Design Wall Monday - July 23, 2018

This week I added a striped binding to this doll quilt, in preparation for entering it in the Churn Dashers group showing at the Mid-Atlantic Quilt Show next Spring.   I like the added interest of a striped binding, and prefer it to any other binding.  This binding is cut 1.25 inches wide, and is single fold.  Next I must add hanging sleeves on all the doll quilts that will be part of this exhibit.  The quilt is 22 in. by 26 in. with hsts finishing at 1 inch.

I blogged about this quilt  (Here) and (Here) and (Here)  On one of these posts, Karen named it "about a gazillion little triangles".  I counted them, because I'm one of those people who count things, and there are 352 hsts in the quilt.  My granddaughter Sophie was here this week, and she named the quilt "Polly".  I am entering it in the quilt show as "Patriotic Polly".

A close-up of the binding:

Indian Pipes (sometimes called "Ghost Plant") are now in our forest at the cabin:

Info about these plants from the Internet:

Unlike most plants, It is white and does not contain chlorophyll.  Instead of generating energy from sunlight, it is parasitic, more specifically a mycoheterotroph.  Its hosts are certain fungi that are mycorrhizal with trees, meaning it ultimately gets its energy from photosynthetic trees.

A closer picture:

They appear suddenly, often after a rainstorm, and are so lovely.  I am often the only one who sees them.......which is why I am so happy to share their beauty with you today!  Indian Pipes is said to have been the favorite wildflower of the poet Emily Dickinson.

Looking forward to seeing your design wall today!  The link up rules are simple - just refer back to this particular blog post within your design wall blog post somewhere.  Thanks!

Monday, July 16, 2018

Design Wall Monday - July 16, 2018

First, a picture of our Granddaughter, Jenna, holding Penny.....or I should say Jenna is trying to hold Penny while Penny tries to lick her!  Penny loves the grandchildren and wiggles all over when they pay attention to her.  Jenna just graduated from high school, and we are at her graduation party, celebrating with family.  We are very proud of her.

Pondering this morning on why I have so many unfinished quilting projects.   I read somewhere on the Internet..... (don't know where or when....but I did save these thoughts and authors)....and can relate to most of them:

"My theory is that quilts know their own birthday and for various reasons sometimes you start something and it's just not the right time.  They let you know when they are ready to be completed :=)."  Zelda Lawrence-Curran

"I sometimes put projects away in frustration when I make mistakes.  That was the case with 2 of the UFOs I finished last year.  Once I got back to them, fixing the mistakes wasn't bad.  Frustration had evaporated while they sat around."  Kelly Rosenleaf

"I have 'Oooooh, Shiney!' coupled with 'Look!  A Squirrel!!'.  Bad combination.  I've got to do a major sort, and then I'm planning to line them up like Dave Ramsey debt balances---finish the one with the least to do first, and then the next one, and so on.  We'll see how many I get done!"  Annette Mark Christensen

"3 reasons.  1.  I got bored with it.  2.  I need to make a decision and cannot decide what I want.  3.  I don't like how it's coming out and need to think of a way to salvage it."  Annette Fallucca

"Confession:  I am lazy.  Any excuse after that is a justification, trying to justify why I won't do what I know I should be doing.  This is why I have a lot of grand plans, but never have any follow-through.  I don't like to think of myself as stubborn and rebellious, but what else do you call what I do?  God forgive me for wasting time playing when I should be working!"  Mary Seaman

"I have UFOs because I don't believe in 'making myself' do a hobby.  There are too many unpleasant things in life that you just 'suck it up and do' because they have to be done.  Hobbies are not one of those things for me.  If I'm curious about something, I'll experiment.  Sometimes it takes the entire project to find an answer I'm happy with, sometimes it only takes one block or half a quilt before I get an answer and am no longer curious."  Meg Taylor

Can you relate to any of these?  

This week I am thinking on and deciding what doll quilts I want to enter into the Mid-Atlantic Quilt Show next spring, as part of the Churn Dashers exhibit.  When I decide, I will then write the 'details' page for each quilt (size, name of quilt, etc.) as the Churn Dasher's group leaders need my information before August 1st so they can plan the exhibit.

What is on your design wall this week?  I really enjoy seeing all of your projects, and your progress toward completion.  Thanks for participating.  All I ask is that you please reference back to this particular blog post somewhere within your blog post.  

Happy Design Wall Monday!

Monday, July 9, 2018

Design Wall Monday - July 9, 2018

This week I went to a small quilt show in a little town near our cabin.  There were some interesting quilts, but also there were some old quilts wrapped around the bottom of the wood structures holding the quilts (so people wouldn't trip over the wood bases).  Two of these old quilts were ones I would have liked to see hanging in the show - and they were used as a device to keep people from tripping!  My taste in quilts is different than theirs!

Here are pictures of the two:

Pink hexies and thirties fabric - it is adorable!

Thirties stars and a lively sashing - I love it!  I felt sorry for both of them that they were on the floor.

There was one old redwork quilt that interested me, and I enjoyed looking at the squares.  Here's one I liked of a little girl and her doll:

We had a friend visit us yesterday, and he brought his 10 week old golden retriever, Summer, with him.  Here is a picture of Penny (with green collar) and Summer:

They were sure cute together!

I hope you are getting more quilting done that I am, but my excuse this week is that the weather was just perfect, and also we hung the hammock up.  I was outside more than inside, and thoroughly enjoyed being in the hammock, thinking about how beautiful the trees look from there - lying on my back, looking up at the sunshine through all the tall oak tree leaves.  Penny liked the hammock too.  

I welcome your comments, and am trying to respond in spite of Blogger's glitch.  I am sure they will fix it soon, if they haven't already.  

Please join in the show, and post a picture of what's on your Design Wall.  All I ask is that you please refer back to this particular post somewhere within your blog.  Thanks!