2/5 down 3/5 to go

Happy Belated New Year!

I survived the last three Holidays!  Thanksgiving (US), Christmas, and New Year’s!  I gained Bluetooth headphones and only five pounds.  Fortunately I lost nine pounds before all the crazy eating and drinking of all the calorie-rich food and drink.  That is a plus for me.

Do you have a bucket list?  I do.  And I don’t.  One of the things on this nonexistent bucket list was to make a quilt.  Well, I made two quilts but still need to make three more.  One for each of my grandchildren.  That lifetime goal was made when I was 35 years old.  I’m a lot older than that now but having a bucket list was also nonexistent way back then.

So here are my two quilts.  The first quilts I’ve ever made.  I learned a lot from this experience…meaning I’ve made mistakes.

I posted photos of this project in 2013 and now I have finally finished them.

Without further ado…

Zs-quilt-front

I used the stack and slash or whack technique with eight different fabrics plus a neutral ivory solid and a sprinkling of khaki.

Es-quilt-front

I wanted the quilts to be a little bit longer so I added three rows of leftovers.

Close-up

The backs…

Zs-quilt-back

The backs involved the first letter of each recipient plus some leftover fabrics to coordinate with the binding.

Es-quilt-back

Close-ups of the backs.

Zs-quilt-back-closeup

Es-quilt-close-up

My sewing machine does some lettering/monograming so I made machine stitched labels sewn to the lower right side on the quilt backs.  In case you wondered, I am “Nona”.

Label

Straight line quilting, well, as straight as I could do it.

On the beds.

Zs-quilt-bed

Es-quilt-bed

So two down, three to go.

Getting…

gloves

…a grip.  I have taken up quilting and am almost ready to machine quilt my first one.  Question for quilters: Do you wear special gloves to get a grip on your quilt as you maneuver it while machine quilting?

cake

…older.  I had another birthday at the end of October.  Funny how they keep happening year after year after year.  I know age is just a number but I have a hard time telling people how old I am.*  My finite existence is starting to weigh on me.  I’m not as quick physically or mentally.  I forget things so I have to write everything down…that’s not really new but having to go back and refer to my notes is new.  Sleep issues have been a part of my life for 15 or so years.  Our new mattress has helped the past two weeks as I’m getting better sleep, just not enough.  Planning for the future is a real eye-opener.  We’ll need a new roof on our house in the next five or so years.  Do we look at the 20-25 year life shingles or go for the 50-70 year metal roof?  Is adding a craft room in the basement worth the time, effort and expense?  These are things I just don’t want to think about.

pizza

…a chance to goof off.  Last evening I allowed myself to goof off.  I brought home a pepperoni pizza for dinner.  That’s really a big thing for me as I’m not a much of a pizza fan but it was a quick no-brainer option and I actually had some cold paper cash with me.  After washing the dishes and reading a few emails (some I answered, some I did not), I fixed myself a pot of peppermint tea and started to read a book a friend sent me.  Thanks Leah!

tea-pot

*BTW  I’m fifty-eleven.  Ouch.  That hurt.  I need some ice…and an R&C.**

**Rum and Coke

A new obsession

I haven’t been posting much lately.  Things have gotten a bit hectic at home and at work. 

Our office has a two-day conference this coming week and someone has to organize the logistics with the hotel, meeting space and menus, order the meeting packets and give-aways, design and mail invitations, postcards, meeting packets and newsletters, collect the registration data, design and print the programs, table signs, and nametags.

That someone is me.  While I like doing all those things, I do not want to look at a computer screen.

Sorry.

But…I have been busy not knitting.

A few months ago I decided I was going to do something from my bucket list.  Don’t ask me what else is on it as I just started making a bucket list.

Anyway, making a quilt is on that list so I’m making quilts for my grandchildren.  I just finished two twins bed sized quilt tops and plan to piece the backing as well to make both sides fun.

The twins share a bedroom so I made theirs similar.

E-quilt-2013

Both are the same “Stack and Slash” technique using mostly the same fabrics in each.  When I saw this on Chasing Cottons blog, I knew it would be possible for me to do.   The tutorial from Kate Conkil was easy to follow.  I used three stacks of fabric instrad of two as I was making a larger quilt.  I also had to add some fabric tp make it wider for the twin bed.  Extra blocks were cut up and pieced together for a horizontal column.

Z-quilt-2013

I used Kona solids and some cotton scraps from other sewing projects.   I even used some fabric scraps from the dresses I made them a couple of years ago.  (Yes, the one that got eaten by the Destroyer.)  I bought backing fabric when I was in Ohio this past July.  I don’t have the backing plan finalized but I do have it narrowed down to two.  Or three.

The Stack and Slash method seemed like the perfect technique since no seams have to match up.  Adding the row of horizontal stripes negated that right away but I did still got everything to line up.  You might be able to enlarge the photos by clicking on them.  I think.

I plan to quilt these on my new sewing machine.  Simple lines.  Simple wavy lines.  Simple wonky lines most likely.  But that is a long way off.

Sewing machine question

I may be in the market for a new sewing machine.

I plan to do some quilting as well as home decor and some clothing.  The machine I have now is designed for occasional and light sewing though I’ve done some extensive sewing projects in the past several years.  It’s just not keeping up with the demands I’m placing on it.  Mostly because it’s not designed to.

I want to machine quilt twin-sized (or larger) quilts, which are a bit larger than the 15 x 24 inch items I’ve been doing.

For all you quilters (or non-quilters) out there: What sewing machine do you use or would recommend for machine quilting?  Pros and cons?