Friday, December 7, 2012

Friday Finish

Eighteen of thirty quilts quilted and bound!  I'm getting more adventurous in my long-arming; today I am experimenting with straight-line quilting on the long arm machine:

I'm thrilled with the way this is turning out.  The only problem is, the tray on which my machine sits has a gouge in it (don't know how that happened) which makes the machine slip when it goes across that point. Which of course, makes the line crooked!  Now that I know where it does that, I can adjust for it.  But I have two lines of stitching that will have to be ripped out and re-sewn on the regular machine.

Three more quilts to add to my "ready to hand off" stack.  The first one was a "Sunday is for Scraps" project. I quilted it to test a new polyester batting from Pellon.  Poly batting is so much lighter than cotton!  I think I will donate this one to the nursing home -- it is just the right size for a wheelchair quilt, and it is lightweight enough that it won't be uncomfortable on a lap.

I am really proud of this next quilt. It is a Fat Quarter Fun project from early this year, "On a Slant."  I used the January Color Palette colors in Kona cottons (blogged here).

I quilted it with a spiky meander and used a multi-colored King Tut thread:

I love this quilting design with the geometric shapes of this quilt!

The third quilt this week is going in the "someday my boys will get married and I'll have another granddaughter" cache:

It is a Modern Quilt Relish design, "TV Dinner."  I used Moda's "In the Meadow" charm pack, so I'm calling it "TV Dinner in the Meadow."

I'm getting better at quilting flowers!  I experimented with ric rac and Susie's Magic Binding.  I decided to round the corners rather than try to miter the ric rac.

I took photos of the ric rac binding technique and it will be a Tuesday Tutorial someday.

Linking up to Thank Goodness it's Finished Friday at Quokka Quilts.

Tomorrow is another Fat Quarter Fun class.  We're making a Mary Ellen Hopkins design, "Nine to Five."  This color is a hint of my fabric choices -- can't wait to show you!

From the desk of your auntmartisignature

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Quilts of Valor

Earlier this year, a group of women from Ft. Carson here in Colorado Springs deployed to Afghanistan as the "Female Engagement Team" of the 4th Infantry Division.  Fourteen women spent nine months in Afghanistan.

According to the Ft. Carson Facebook page,
Female Engagement Teams are designed to provide a more culturally sensitive approach to engaging the women of Afghanistan, and other members of the population, in order to improve relations and build support for the Afghan government and coalition forces, according to Capt. Heather Di Silvio, the officer in charge of the brigade’s FET.
Friend Terry Putzstuck decided these women deserved a quilt.  So she dove into her extensive collection of red, white, and blue fabrics and started sewing.  She is quick to say she didn't make all 14 quilts, but had help from her sister, her friends and quilters in the community.

Here are just some of the quilts that will be presented to the team when they return to Colorado this month:

All I can say is "wow."  Thank you Terry, and thank you soldiers of the Female Engagement Team and the 4th Infantry Division.

From the desk of your auntmartisignature

Monday, December 3, 2012

Monday Mystery

It also should be BOM-day, but with two mysteries in the works, the BOMs are going to fall by the wayside today.

First up, Step 2 of Bonnie Hunter's "Easy Street":

It is no secret that I do not like Flying Geese.  Please don't tell me "try this ruler" or "try this technique."  Believe me, I've tried them all.  And I still don't like Flying Geese.

This time, I'm pressing the seams open.  I haven't sewn any together yet, but I will say, they come out nice and flat!

All 128 purple "geese" are sewn and pressed, I'm just trimming off the dog ears.  Notice my metal cookie sheet, a la Bonnie Hunter?  Great way to keep the pieces organized until they're ready to be stored in plastic bags awaiting their turn in the quilt!  (BTW, I'm linking up to Bonnie's "Easy Street" linky here.)

I'm also working on a mystery quilt at my fav LQS, Ruth's Stitchery.  This one is by Debbie Caffrey, a very talented and prolific mystery quilt designer:

I'm only one step behind on this one, but it's the second to last step!  I need to be ready to sew all the blocks together by Wednesday.

I'm using Civil War repros for this iteration of the mystery.  Notice the baggie of flying geese?  Maybe that's why I'm behind on this quilt!

 I actually made this quilt last year, but I don't want to spoil the fun for other mystery quilters -- so tune in again next week for the big "reveal!"

From the desk of your auntmartisignature