Quilting and Stuff by Knitnoid

She’s Still Helping Me

Last night after finishing the Kansas Trouble block, I went back to the hand quilting. I really need to get some better lighting. I’m quilting with black thread on black and I simply can’t see. Seven’s help is hindering me as well.

I finally gave up on quilting in my lap. A different hoop might help, but Seven wants to be in my lap at the same time and it just doesn’t work well. So, I looked for my Q-Snap quilting frame which my parents bought me when I first started working on the DWR.

There’s been very little quilting done on the frame, but I did use it to hold a blanket I cross-stitched. Anyway, got the frame setup, quilt loaded and sure enough, it needed a QCC inspection. Yep, Seven thought it was a nice place to hang out. I finally convinced her it wasn’t a large hammock made especially for her and got to quilting.

I finished up the first block and started on the second block before going to bed. Who knows how much I’ll get done today.

HST Orphans

How hard can it be? I know multiple ways to make accurate HST. But apparently it’s still important to READ the DIRECTIONS.

Last night I started working on a 12-inch Kansas Troubles block for the Kansas Spirit BOM at my LQS. I read the directions – they are using the add 7/8 inch to the finished size to make the HST. I prefer to add a full inch and then trim square using my QIAD Triangle Square Up Ruler. Sure I ‘waste’ those slivers of fabric, and it takes time to trim the square, but my HSTs are significantly more accurate using this method.

I cut my squares pairing the light to the dark and make 24 HST. They are trimmed and press and measure 2 1/2” unfinished. I sew them into pairs. That’s when I discover I have a problem.

The instructions say to cut the squares 2 3/8”, not 2 7/8” squares. I should have cut my squares 2 1/2”. Further review of the pattern shows me I only need 16 HST, not the 24 I ended up with. The other 4 light and dark squares do not end up as HSTs.

So, into the orphan pile go these 24 HST units. After dinner I’ll start over on this block – paying more attention to the instructions. Good thing I don’t need it until NEXT Friday.

Help with my Hand Quilting

Last evening while watching Dancing With the Stars, Seven kept trying to help me quilt. I persevered and got 1/4 of the first block quilted. When I got up, I sat the whole thing on the floor and went about my business. When I came back in, Seven was on top of the quilt ‘inspecting’ it as part of her duties as QCC – Quality Control Cat.

After the photo session, I moved the quilt.

QD is Home and I’m Hand Quilting?

I got a call from the repair shop today saying QD could come home! She’s cleaned and had two new light bulbs — and she’s still out in the car. I’ve got Miss Genie sitting in her spot and have gotten distracted with a bit of HAND QUILTING.

I don’t hand quilt, like I don’t hand applique. But both are changing. Several years ago I took a hand quilting class with the intention of learning to hand quilt so I could hand quilt my double wedding ring (DWR) quilt – the one that’s still not pieced.

Over the last two weeks, I got to thinking that I need to practice my hand quilting before I start on the DWR. Meanwhile, my nephew’s quilt still needs to have the pieced blocks quilted, and I haven’t figured out how/what to quilt. These two thoughts resulted in deciding to finish up the blocks on the quilt by hand.

There are 15 pieced blocks. Hopefully by the time I get to the last block, my quilting will be decent and I’ll have found a style that works for me. It’s slow going at the moment — I think I’ve only gotten through 1/8th of the first block so far.

2007 Main Street Stripers BOM

Ladder to the Stars – Blocks Complete

Earlier today I finished pieces the 32 six inch blocks I need for my Ladder to the Stars. The star part comes in with the paper pieced sashing which I have not started. I was short pieces for one of the blue and white blocks which surprised me because I was positive I had cut enough fabric, but I made 2 more 4-patches and cut 3 more white squares to finish the block.

A few minutes ago I finished emptying the case I took to retreat with me a couple of weeks ago, and found the other pieces. Apparently the pieces fell in to the open case. Perhaps it is time to do a bit of straightening up in my sewing room.

Stash Report Week #18

These charms were my other purchases this week. I don’t have a lot of Christmas prints in my stash, but these spoke to me. I’ve already got an idea on how to use them, but of course that could change at least 2 or 3 times before I get it done.

This week I’ve been sewing on my 6″ block, the fabric was cut and counted last week.

Fabric Added this Week: 2.75 yards
Fabric Added to Date: 122.75 yards

Fabric Used this Week: 0 yards
Fabric Used to Date: 38.12 yards

Net Stash: +84.62 yards

Squishies in the Mail

Friday’s mail run brought two ‘squishies’ in the mail. One was this pair of blocks from the QIAD Birthday Block Swap. I signed up for this swap at the beginning of the year. We picked the color/block we wanted, then on your birthday everyone in your group sends you a block. I think I’ve sent out 3 blocks so far this year, have 3 made to be sent later in the year and need to make another 5.

My plan is to alternate these blocks with various blue & yellow stars. This of course is subject to change, but I have been buying yellow fabric, including these this afternoon:

As for my other ‘squishy’, it really wasn’t very squishy.

It was my new Martelli Rotary Cutter. I love this thing, and had completely worn out my original cutter. For the last week I’ve been using a Fiskar cutter which is OK, but my not my favorite. I’m SO glad this cutter finally arrived.

Apologies to Miss Genie

In my last post I mentioned Miss Genie’s stitches were long. Well, I forgot she’s an old fashioned lady. I’m not certain where I had her stitch length set originally, but last night I moved the lever all the way down, hoping for a smaller stitch. What I failed to recognize at the time was the scale is not the length of stitches as on QD, but the # of stitches per inch. To get a smaller stitch, I should have moved her lever up. Which I did to 12 and now I have a lovely line of stitching. Fortunately, I figured this out before I sewed too many of those 4-patches.

We’ve come to an understanding on stitch length and even a 1/4 inch seam – for basic piecing like the 4-patches. But I haven’t mastered the 1/4 inch seam when making HST from squares. When I had her cleaned up, I bought a 1/4 inch foot, but she has a tendency to send the fabric off ‘that a ways’ unless she has her nice broad foot on. So, I move the needle to the right (only 3 positions) and have a ‘stop’ of sticky notes for straight piecing. I’m not sure what I’m going to do for those diagonal lines of stitching.

Another positives about Miss Genie. I turn her on and she’s ready to go. With my big machine, QD, (Husqvarna Quilt Designer) I have a ritual I follow when I sit down to piece. Turn her on. Wait for the ‘music’ to stop, hit the stitch width button, hit the mirror image button, hit the menu screen twice, hit the needle down button and then hit the fix button. Miss any of these steps and I don’t have my nice scant 1/4 inch seam. There’s nothing more frustrating to realize that you missed the mirror image button and are now sewing with a wide 1/4 inch seam. I really must do more piecing on Miss Genie. She done a fine job on these 2 inch 4-patches I’ve been working on.

Aren’t they cute. I’m about a third of the way through them.

Meet Miss Genie

This is Miss Genie. She’s been hanging out at a friend’s house for several months waiting for me to get back to group sewing. Tonight I went and picked her up. My big sewing machine is still in the shop and I HAD TO SEW.

Miss Genie came into my life about 16 months ago. DH stopped at a garage sale and saw her. He knew most of my quilting buddies had a smaller machine to take to classes and retreats and figured I might like her.

He was assured Miss Genie worked fine the last time she was used, but was put up due to her previous owner no longer sewing. For $5 he figured I’d get a kick out of her.

Miss Genie came home. Clearly the individual selling the machine didn’t know WHY the previous owner had stopped sewing. It was right there in the bobbin case. She was jammed up big time. DH and I worked on getting the thread out of the bobbin case, pulled her open to work on the dust, dirt, smoke and decided to get a second opinion. For the cost of a tune up and a thread pin, I now had a ‘portable’ machine.

Miss Genie is not that much lighter than my big machine, but due to her compact size, she is a bit easier to carry.

Although she’s not my primary machine, she does sew a straight, albeit lengthy stitch. Tonight she allowed me to start on those 112 two inch 4-patches.

I may only have one done, but it’s made a difference in my mood. Not sewing for a week when I wanted to sew was driving me crazy.

Stash Report Week #17

More fabric came in than went out this week. Included in the incoming fabric is fabric to make my husband a shirt – or to use as the backing of his music quilt, 3 pretty yellow FQs, binding for my pink and brown quilt and 3/4 yard of a beige print I’ve been looking for to finish up another quilt. Oh, yes, I bought the red fabric I need for a new quilt I’m starting. I still need the gold and blue and will get it Tuesday night while it’s still on sale.

On the outgoing side of things, I cut the binding for my OTR and have it sewn together and with the quilt top, and I cut the pieces for the new quilt I’m starting. 32 six inch blocks. Boy are those pieces tiny. 4-patches that finish at 2 inches. The cut pieces fit into a single sandwich bags. What have I gotten my self into?

Fabric Added this Week: 7.5 yards
Fabric Added to Date: 120.0 yards

Fabric Used this Week: 2.29 yards
Fabric Used to Date: 38.12 yards

Net Stash: +81.87 yards