RSC18 week 8

SAD FAREWELL

The other day my well-used sewing machine bit the dust.  I was shopping for a new one and waiting for my daughter to bring me one of hers to try out.  However, tragedy struck before this could happen. Well, tragedy is overstating it, but my feeling of loss was quite real.  
It happened two days ago. I was working on my January Scrap Attack goal, finishing binding my Rainbow Geese quilt, when the needle broke right off.  That was okay and I tried to replace it.  However, with my clumsy attempts I broke off the needle holder itself and was unable to reattach it.  Here’s the quilt with the unfinished side hidden.  
Suddenly I had time on my hands with nothing to do and realized how much I actually do with my machine each day.  Reading or cleaning  closets did not fill that void.  Last night was the end of the Olymplics figure skating as well. 

So I went hunting through my sewing room and finally found a large number of purple 4-patches hidden  away.  They were part of a Bonnie Hunter challenge which I never completed.  To show you all that I have done some purple work this week, I laid out this block on my slippery design  floor.  I just had to have more than one photo for this post.  


This is just a fraction of the patches which would make a baby quilt.  I’m thinking I could use them to frame some cute panel, or as a border for my pink and purple crib quilt.  

So that’s all the news from here this week, other than the fact that most of the snow has melted and my fingers are no longer frozen.

Have a good week, everyone.
I’ll be seeing you at
Rainbow Scrap Challenge at


RSC18 week 7

QUICK WORK
This is a shorter month and that’s my only excuse for not getting much done.  My project this week used a bit of purple and a lot of pink.  It’s another Project Linus top, for a  little girl this time.  I remember when pink and purple were my granddaughter’s favorite colors.  That was about ten years ago.  Now, at 16, she is sophisticated in black and white.  I do miss buying clothes for little girls.  
These wide strips were a good way to use my stash, some charms, 2-1/2 inch strips and even a 4-patch strip in purple.

Unfortunately all the photos of the entire top were overexposed and not worth showing.  But this folded portion includes all of the fabrics used, in width-of-fabric repeats.  Now it is about 42×56 without a border.  
This is not a new project, but a use for a WIP.  Last fall I  really enjoyed making a simple X-block done in springtime Kaffe Fassett fabrics.  I added a white border and left it at that.
I left this hanging around until a friend saw it recently and suggested that it would make a nice tablecloth.  So here it is on my antique side table, just the thing to brighten the living room during these dull days.
What about a new sewing machine?  My daughter and I went shopping for one yesterday.  There have been so many nice improvements with the electronics in all the machines.  Even the basic ones are so much more convenient than my present machine.  
Then Beth suggested I try her newer machine to see if it would work for me.  So she is going to bring it over tomorrow for me to try.  If I like it, we can switch around machines with her and Sarah.  So hopefully I will have good news next week.
Meanwhile, i will enjoy seeing all of your latest stitching news.
See you at
Rainbow Scrap Challenge at

RSC18 week 6

PURPLE  CHALLENGE

This month is not my favorite for weather, and this year for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge color, purple. When I pulled my purple stash I was really disappointed.  There are some terrific batiks, but otherwise all the rest seem very dull.  I also have very few prints to use.  I was hoping to find lovely florals, especially lilacs and violets, two of my favorite flowers.   Overall, a pretty depressing stash for me.  I’m sticking to my rule of no fabric purchases this year, so there will be slim pickings.  

However, I did find a large scrap of a gorgeous floral and used it for my first Sawtooth Star block.   


I was really surprised when the photo showed it off better than it appeared to my eyes. The slanting light seemed to bring it alive. 
The 16-patch block was not very exciting at all.  See all the pale grayish tones?  Now I have a collection of 2-1/2 inch squares which will probably get moldy in the bottom of some orner of the closet.

In order to have something to show for February, I’m making a Project Linus quilt using purple and pink strips and  charms.  The fleece backing for this is a sweet unicorn print on purple.  Some little girl will love it.  

Enough of these negative purple thoughts.  On the definetly positive side:
BIG NEWS!  
I’m going to buy myself a new sewing machine. My current one was bought twelve years ago when I retired.  It was not a high end machine and has gotten good use, but has some real drawbacks for quilting.  The throat space, between the needle and the body, is only 5-1/2 inches.  I have to turn the wheel in order to raise and lower the foot.  There are other drawbacks as well.   
I’ve done quite a bit of comparison shopping, mostly online, and have decided on a real quilting machine at a good price.  If the snow ever holds off this week, I hope to get to the sewing store to try it out.  Hopefully the big reveal will be next Saturday.  
I’m looking forward to seeing what all of you folks have been up to.
See you at
Rainbow Scrap Challenge at

RSC18 week 5

 LIGHT BLUE FINISH

Icy blue is a better name for this January RSC18  color.  It’s the color of my fingers after five minutes outside.  I can’t recall such a long cold winter.  Good for quilting work anyway.  
However, my brain must have had frostbite because I completely forgot to finish my RSC18 week 3 post.  So here is my 10-inch Churn Dash block in light blue.  

I’m not sure if I’m going to continue this block monthly.  I’m trying to be consistent with my block sizes, preferably at 8 inches finished.  This allows me to mix and match them as needed.  That is my go-to size.  
This Sawtooth Star is definitely on the list.  I like making it with flying geese piecing, four fewer seams to goof up, as you will notice below.  I love choosing a central focal point, especially if there are some sparks of other colors.

  The 16-patch is on of my very favorites.  I’m happy with scrappy.


For my Christmas gift to myself I bought three books on improv quilting, all on sale of course.  I’ve been really inspired by Intuitive Color and Design by Jean Wells.  She is one of the masters of art quilting and includes assignments for each of several design principles.  I can recommend it for any of you who want to stretch your design boundaries.

Last year, or maybe in 2016, I made ten improv blocks according to Angela’s color choices.  I will need twenty for a quilt, a good goal for this year.

Here is the 8-1//2-Inch improv block I ended up with.  I started out with lighter blue scraps, but this block wanted to go darker as well.  Sorry, Angela.  

One more strip block just snuck in.

This is going to be a great year for Rainbow Scrap Challenge and I’ve just pulled out my purples.
Can’t wait to see all the lovely purole piecing this month, along with all the hearts.  Now if only they were filled with chocolates…
Please check out the quilt goodies at
Rainbow Scrap Challenge at

RSC 18 week 2

2017 FAVORITES

Having seen so many year end reviews by my quilting friends, I went through my own pics to choose my five top favorites.   This includes only totally finished quilts, which leaves out some of my most popular ones, still in the works.  
Of course, this post allows me to delay showing my latest projects, which amount to very little at the moment.  If I really get going I may be able to fill in the last two Saturdays this month.  I’m doing the Scrap Attack, which is a fun way for me to have workable monthly goals.  I’ve never done anything about goal setting before, so I expect to make a good dent in my UFOs.
Number five is my first Ad Hoc Improv Quilt challenge piece.  This was using Chinese coins in an improv way.  I added extra components, including a rising sun and orange bits of light representing sprouting seeds.  A number of the strips were pieced horizontally also, to break up the straight lines in the dark earth.  I call it Seeds of Hope.

In fourth place I chose a Color Works pattern, using a collection of fat eighths which were getting dusty.  I called it Type Face because of its colorful variety of typewriter keys of all sizes.  I sent the top to Kat for her Covered In Love charity.  She had it quilted by her generous friends in Texas, and the chaplain of the hospital where she works presented it to a grieving family.  

Number three is what started out as a crayon quilt.  I pieced all the rows but didn’t get around to making the points.  So it was easier to make a rainbow, another Project Linus piece.  

My choice for second place is the set of 16-patch blocks from RSC16.  Yes another Rainbow.  In my stash I found a bright banana print and added corner 9-patches to make it a good size.  I backed it with  a monkey print fleece.  I hated giving it up, but some child is enjoying it now.

My number one for 2017 was a super easy choice, my Summer quilt for my own bed.  I had collected a group of Kaffe Fassett precuts and used them to make large blocks.  I had it longarmed by a member of my guild, Monona Quilters.  I’m so happy with it, and it has turned out to be warm enough to use year round.  
Looking back, it was a good year for my quilting output.  I really enjoy doing charity quilts now that my family has been supplied.  I loved seeing so many truly special quilts that so many of you have made.  It’s like an ongoing quilt show each week.  I know that 2018 is going to be an even better year for all of us.  
I’ll be waiting to see what everyone has done at
Rainbow Scrap Challenge at
and
katandcatquilts.blogspot.comCovered In Love

RSC18 week 1

A FLYING START
This year I’m taking part in Scrap Attack and drawing a project to work on each month.  My 12 projects are all UFOs to be finished.  Here’s my pot and the January pick.
My Geese Migration flimsy is up for completion by the end of the month, a flying start for 2018.

Before I get to that I need to finish my Waterfront Neighborhood project.  I’m piecing three rows of houses and trees, plus two rows of sailboats.  The houses are from a Rainbow Scrap Challenge, not sure which year, and the boats are a couple of years old.  The little trees were the most difficult to piece and were made to extend the rows to 40 inches.  
Row quilts are one of my favorite Project Linus quilts.  I usually make them about 45×60.  Then I back each with a colorful fleece blanket which can be found for about 3-5 dollars on sale.  For Christmas my daughter surprised me with six more of them.  
We are still frozen solid for the third week now, as so many of you are.  If it warms up enough we could get some snow.  At least it’s not as bad as the high tide of slush in Boston.  I pray that all of you dear quilter friends will have a blessed and Happy New Year.  Go LIGHT BLUE!
Please check out the quilt goodies at
Rainbow Scrap Challenge at

RSC17 week 50

MANY COLORS

The fact that Christmas is coming quickly did not deter me from starting three quilted gifts.  I’ve never tried the pattern before, but believed every word Joy at The Joyful Quilter told us about how easy and fun this project is.  If I find out differently in the coming days, she is the one to blame.  
Here are the three stacks of strips I gathered for piecing each one. 
So far I have finished the piecing on two of them and working on the last one.  Then the real challenge begins for me, to assemble these gifts ASAP.  

That’s all I’ve been doing this week, so I’m sharing an antique quilt from my collection.  It goes so nicely over my wing chair and adds more Christmas cheer.  It is a Courthouse Steps log cabin variation from around 1900 and is made of heavier fabric, perhaps for draperies or winter dresses. The closeup gives you a feel for the texture.    

It was given to me by a woman who wanted to know the age of another quilt and then offered it to me for free, to give it a good home.  It joined my other old adopted quilts and is truly loved.
I hope you all have a happy and peaceful holiday season.
Meanwhile, you can see all the cheerful happenings at
Rainbow Scrap Challenge at