Quilt ADD in therapy

My photo
Colorado, United States
Other than my family, the passion of my life is quilting. An eclectic, I love a wide variety of styles and techniques encompassing both machine and hand work. Instagram: lyncc_quilts

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

December NewFO


2013NewFO
I love Barbara's NewFO parties each month, and they're really helping me get these kits pulled out of stone-cold status and on their way to becoming quilts before my youngest is out of high school.  ;D  Lots of other fun projects emerging, so take a fun  stroll through the other links!

December was a month of greatly-reduced production, but I knew it would be with the cruise and the holidays and all.  :D  So I won't be doing an end-of-month report. But I do have a NewFO to share.


Before the cruise, I pulled out an old Christmas quilt kit called "Martha's Holiday Spin" from 2007. I'd hoped to get the fabrics washed and ironed, but they just felt so nice in my hands that I went ahead and cut everything (except the borders' final lengths).



But once it was kitted up so nicely, I couldn't resist getting some of the sewing done on it before it has to go back into storage. I got all the main blocks made - 12 Martha Washington Stars on the left and 6 Spinning Shirleys on the right.




And I did up the 4 border cornerstones while I was at it since they're just the insides of the Martha Washington Star blocks. 



And now it's coming up to the New Year, when I have to cut back on quilting hours to really get down-and-dirty with my thesis until August. So this goes back on the Christmas Storage Shelf, probably not to see the light of day again until next year's holiday season. At least it's quite a good ways on its path to flimsyhood! The pattern has lots of open areas for awesome quilting, so I have high hopes for this quilt's final state.http://catpatches.blogspot.com/2013/12/december-newfo-linky-party-and-giveaway.html

Sunday, December 29, 2013

BOMs Away - 30 Dec - Ruffled Roses

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-yBA0dP9XZiY/TdlBWrZfbOI/AAAAAAAAAcM/mjC0IDWrqZY/s1600/BOM+Button.jpg



Welcome to the Link-Up for BOMs Away Mondays!


We'd love to see the BOM you're working on lately.
This week's link-up is at the bottom of this post.


How's it going?! We got home back super late in the night, and while I have some BOM work to share, there are no pics until tomorrow. I want to put up the linky, though, for the eastern hemi friends who look for it - so I'll edit tomorrow with a couple pics.

And here's the edit:

I finally finished this round on my Ruffled Roses~! I'm doing my applique for this quilt in the needle-turn style, using the back-basting method. It's about 40 inches square at this point.

 
 
Sure hope your holidays have been nice so far. Here we are already with the last BOMs Away for 2013! Did you get any work done lately?
 
 

Sunday, December 22, 2013

BOMs Away - 23 Dec - Merry Christmas, Enjoying the Warmth!

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-yBA0dP9XZiY/TdlBWrZfbOI/AAAAAAAAAcM/mjC0IDWrqZY/s1600/BOM+Button.jpg





Welcome to the Link-Up for BOMs Away Mondays!



We'd love to see the BOM you're working on lately.
This week's link-up is at the bottom of this post.


Hey! I'm setting this on scheduled post ahead of time, so hopefully everything works for those of you who had sewing time for BOMs lately - because I'm not here! I'm off with all the other children and grandchildren, spending today in WARM Nassau, Bahamas courtesy of Grandpa and Barbara.


That's a far cry from our -17* F in Colorado last week!

I never thought I'd actually get to go on a cruise, and I really never thought Dad would take the entire extended family on one, so this is particularly special trip. Christmas this year is REMARKABLE.  :)  I'm looking forward to some beach time in various Caribbean places after the Arctic Blast we had, as well as some relaxing hand-work time on the deck overlooking the ocean.

I hope you are getting to enjoy some time with your loved ones, too, wherever it may be!

Before we left, I did sew up the pieces I cut out last time: 



I'm wondering if anyone actually sewed these past few days? Let us know if you did!

~*~*~*~*~

Monday, December 16, 2013

NewFO Dreamings for 2014

(Today's BOMs Away Monday is here):    
 
 
 
 

2014 NewFO Challenge

Oh, goody!!  Barbara is running her NewFO program once again for 2014. She's having a giveaway this week for linking up your plans - however specific or vague they may be! 
 
I have found this "program" to be invaluable for pulling long-stored kits out of my stash closet and at least getting them started. 2013 saw several flimsies accomplished that way, but I figure any bit of work (even just washing/ironing/cutting) is a step closer to a finish eventually, so it's all good. And it gives me something new to look at once a month while my "real" quilt work of the moment focuses on the next finish-up.

Some folks would think my working style is frenetic, and honestly, my modus operandi will greatly change once I complete my crazy quest to finish every single kit on my insane NETY list. For now, this system pulls the greatest amount of productivity out of my attention span, so it's the way I roll.  ;D

Going through my storage, here is a game plan of projects to pull out and get started over the next year, with two "new" allowances so I don't go stark raving mad:

 
January

This first one is a newbie - a modern quilting kit I purchased for comfort when my Koko died in November. This is Christa's kit for the "String of Pearls" quilt, and I just love it. I intend to use its quilting as a means to get a certain kind of motif into my muscle memory before I attack my Rainbow Jane quilting.




February

Let's start "Batik1 - Simply Fun" - looks like decent colors to see that month.  :)
 




March

"Tulip Garden" - a flannel kit - would be nice this month, as it's still cooold here when I'm used to it being full-on spring back in Florida. . .


 
 
 
April
 
We need something DRAMATIC and COLORFUL on the year's lineup. Let's cave for the absolutely spectacular, hot and fiery, "Fiesta Mexico" by Karen Buckley. It'll be the other new kit for the year - everything else is ages (even eons) old.
 


  

May

How about "Coraline"?




June

By this point, I'm sure I'll be wanting to move back into more modern styles, so let's do something with the Bliss layer cake and accompanying yardage. Maybe a Swoon (which was flying around Blogland when I bought this bundle), or a modern Dresden? or a Twister? Or some other kick that comes along during the upcoming year...




 
July

High time to say: "Let's Take Amy Clamming!"  (You'll see what's happening here - it's gonna be cool!)






August

Don't need a birthday shopping bash this year, as I'll get to stash-supplement at this time for Top Secret #2.  So let's try again with the Medieval Illumination quilt project. I'd wanted to pull it for one of last year's NewFOs, but half the stuff remains unlocated after our move here to Colorado. I'm thinking a complete overhaul of the storage room and making sure no quilt boxes are lurking in the garage shelving should do the trick!





September

Let's play with the "Valley of the Kings" fabric set!






October

This will be a great time of year for "Saltbox Harvest"





November 

Another retry due to moving glitches!  "That Bad Boy" ... the project with a story that I wanted to do up this past November, but I couldn't find the kit box.




December
  
Are there any holiday kits left back there?  Oh!  Let's do something with the Kate Spain "Flurry" pack:




~*~*~*~
 

That's my plan for allowing myself 2 brand new projects and jump-starting 10 long-stored kits that would otherwise languish away untouched for yet another year. . . Perhaps a few of them will actually make it to flimsy status before being re-stored!  These never get priority for the month's work - they're used as a breather from the projects I put my real push on, the ones I make a concerted drive to finish up, as well as my BOM work.  You kinda have to be around to understand how it all fits together and works in a marvelous way. It's been fun seeing my husband really enjoy the flow of change that trickles around the "real" finishing work, and then get enthusiastic about the next finish point and getting to help with the accompanying photo-op. Apparently he talks about my quilting at work, because he brings me back little suggestions or questions from patients and coworkers. And that makes me smile that he takes my work so seriously even though it's not a paid job.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

BOMs Away - Dec 16

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-yBA0dP9XZiY/TdlBWrZfbOI/AAAAAAAAAcM/mjC0IDWrqZY/s1600/BOM+Button.jpg




Welcome to the Link-Up for BOMs Away Mondays!


We'd love to see the BOM you're working on lately.
This week's link-up is at the bottom of this post.


I hope you guys are enjoying the season. We've had visitors, gone on daytrips, enjoyed holiday light displays, and caught the latest Hobbit movie.


 
Ashley came from Florida and saw her first snow.

 
 
Coach Pam stopped over for a couple of days on her cross-country road trip from Florida to Idaho,
and we got to meet the awesome Daisy.
(Black lab and greyhound is a beautiful mix, just sayin'!)
 
 
 
 
And our neighbors create the best Winter Wonderland light show. 
Loving it!
 





So picture a little handful of red & white HSTs and a few blue, gold, and white small squares cut out, and that's the extent of BOM work I did this week. 'Tis the season! Quilting is my passion, but time with family and friends right now is too important. . .

Have you been able to do any BOM work lately?



Tuesday, December 10, 2013

DWR (Double Wedding Ring) Tips

Almost there with my traditional double wedding ring quilt top!!  I only have two naked ring centers left, with the last of the joining and connection seams to go. 




I really, really love the elegance of the complete circles (without squared-off and enlarged connector diamonds), but it is definitely not a speed-piecing project!



I will never again piece a king-size all-rings DWR unless somebody pays me $35/hr to do so. And at 132 sewing hours (what it'll add up to when I finish this flimsy), nobody's going to do that! But I don't regret doing this for our 25th anniversary next summer - it's perfect for that.

I'm very pleased with how even and flat this has come out - no future quilting woes of easing in over-fullness or dealing with sucked-in spots!  So I'm recording tips for my future reference and to share with anyone else wanting to work with the tradition full-round DWR. (This is not a comprehensive tutorial - you'll still want a pattern or book.)

**Things you HAVE to be good at already to get nice results: You *have* to sew accurate quarter-inch seams. And you need to be comfortable with Y-seams, because the throw-in of the curves on the connector seams puts this task into a major on-steroids mode.

**Things you can let the DWR teach you: doing curved seams.

For pain-free pressing and to protect the integrity of the arc and melon shapes:

*Always* finger-press everything as you go along (except the connector-corner seams). Seriously. Do not let the iron touch arc pieces until they are attached to the melon slice.



On arc pieces, to make the seams lie the easy way for future seams, hold the arc with the fabric facing away from you, and the curve in the direction of a C; finger-press the seam DOWN. Every time.

When you attach the connector pieces, press that seam toward the arc segments:


And it reduces bulk in the final connector seams if you trim these corners off:



On curved seams, finger-press toward the arcs.



I very RARELY press seams open for several reasons. First of all, DWR quilts look infinitely better when the rings are stitched-in-the-ditch, and open-pressed seams cancel that possibility. (It is too weak to SID on just the sewing thread line and doesn't look as nice.) Secondly, after having several decades-old quilts appraised, I do not want increased areas for future bearding of the batting through the seams. Third, the rings look very nice with the ever-so-slight 3D effect of the float above the background created by pressing toward the arcs. Fourth, this keeps the points of the centers at the connecting corners from bulking up in that seam.

When you are joining rows of rings, you DO NOT sew the connector corners closed yet:



I didn't see why this was necessary, but in the beginning I found that the book was right - you need them to stay open until you come back to them later.  Can't remember exactly why, but I do remember having to pick seams out. So, while working your way across rows of rings, just reach right through the open connectors to finger-press each curve seam as you move along:





To press with the iron after each arc is attached:

For me, it is easiest to keep the melon from warping by pressing the first attachment from the back side. It's all finger-pressed, but still play with everything to get the seam to lie down properly without stretching the background out of shape. First press one side:



Then the other:


Then ease the middle pieces flat with the iron.




This way, any extra fullness will ease in on the inner seams while leaving the two ends nice and smooth. This is why you don't let the iron touch the arcs until they're attached.




I do starch the resulting flying saucer - it helps maintain the shape integrity with the second arc's attachment and the joining of the resulting football to the ring center. I don't starch anything else as I'm going along - it's not necessary. (Although I will probably starch the top from the backside when I press the finished flimsy in preparation for layering on the batting.)



When I iron-press the second arc, I do this from the front side. Again doing first one side, then the other, and then easing in the middle for perfect flatness.




No warped footballs!





Pinning those curves:

Always put the concave piece on top. Easiest way to stitch the curve, and the arc-segment seams will be laying the right way to just flow over the machine's feed dogs.

I keep 9 pins on hand and the most effective pinning turns out to be this:



Start on the first end, put the next pin in only 3/4" away, match the connector seams, do the mid-point, match the second connector seam, pin the last end, and then ease the curves to match and pin the gaps with 2 pins each. (Just need one pin in each gap when doing the first arc and there's no connector ends yet.)


~~~Speaking of which, a quirk in matching seams - ONLY when putting the second arc on, and ONLY when matching the connector seams, I found that if I eyeball a scant quarter-inch placement of the pin in each piece of fabric at the seam between the connector piece and the arc segment and between the arc segment and the melon piece,



I will get a perfect inside corner on the football every time. Everywhere else, eyeball an exact quarter inch spacing.


 [For a scant quarter-inch, go one thread's worth shy of an exact measurement.]



Attaching finished footballs to the ring centers:

First of all, the center does not extend all the way along the football. The connector corners hang over, so you match the quarter-inch point of the ring-center's arm point with the quarter-inch-from-the-curve-edge at the seam between the connector piece and the arc segment: [Do not sew the extending connector pieces yet, or you'll be picking those out like I had to. . . ]



Later you will have to do Y-seams at those connection points. I found that it is infinitely easier to get a perfect Y-join when you go to sew the connector seams, if, in the football-attachment seams you leave the TINIEST gap  from the exact connecting point (half a stitch-length, only). If you sew exactly to the pinning point, you have no easement room when trying to connect the final Y-seam, and with the added challenge of the previous curves, that can be a real bear. In the photo below, you can see the hole where the pin was placed in the exact match-up point, and the end of the stitching just barely shy of it:



If you leave more than that for the gap, you'll have tiny holes at the connections after you finish.

Pin the ring center on in this order and tease/shift the top fabric into alignment with the bottom curve as you go:



Pinning in that order puts in the stability, then lets you ease the curve up in an order that leaves the top bulkiness in the right position to start your sewing.

You'll need to turn-shift the top bulk backward as you sew along the curve to avoid pinches in the top fabric.





Connector Seams:

When I go back and do the connector seams, I do the first cross-over in one seam, moving from the first Y-point along the straight connector edge, across the gap (don't need to leave a lot of free thread), and to the ending Y-point. It's not necessary to do each side separately.



It IS necessary to stitch precisely from and to the connection spots this time, unlike the intentionally-created mini-gaps when you attached the footballs to the ring centers.

When pinning the second connector seam, pay attention to which way the middle seams lie most flatly at that cross seam's two endpoints and go with that for the laying-down of the seams. Sometimes they're the easy-pass-over-feed-dogs way, and sometimes not, like below:



This is the only part of the piecing process that I don't finger-press as I go along, and I find it much easier to get a flat pressing result if I do this from the back side. You can ease all the background points open and flat the way they're supposed to be and watch that you don't accidentally mess up the pressing of earlier seams in the surrounding area. And when you turn it over to look at the front, you'll have a gorgeous curved connector diamond.  :)




So..... those were all helpful details that took me several rings to figure out in the beginning, and if I ever do another traditional DWR, I don't want to waste the time doing trial-and-error all over again.


I'm excited to get this quilt top finished!!  We have company this week, so I only have an hour in the wee morning time to sew. Should take 3 more sessions is all!!

~*~*~*~
Linking up at:
WOW
WIP Wednesday