Saturday, March 1, 2014

March 1 UFO Parade

Will Spring ever arrive? We've had wind, wind and more wind this winter. Sir Ernest Shackleton reported that his men on the Endeavor suffered from amenomania, "wind madness." I think many of us in Colorado are experiencing the same thing.

Lucky for quilters, we have fabric to distract us. Considering how many "finishes" were sent in this month, many of you have been "quilting up a storm!"

Before I show them to you, here is the UFO number to work on this month:
If you didn't get started on the 12 in 2014 UFO Challenge in January, not to worry. Jump in anytime! Go here to see how it works.

My #4 UFO is from Strip Club years back. It requires applique, which is probably why it isn't finished! The pattern is from 4 & 6 Designs and is named "Autumn's Arrival."

I have the background pieced, so many I will get it finished this month!

I have to confess I didn't finish my February UFO, so it goes back in the bin for another try next year!

Nancy finished two UFO this month. I have to share what she says about it, because it made me laugh:
The first was supposed to be a throw.  But I can't seem to follow a pattern so I made it bigger.  I had seen the fabric last September and really liked, I have always wanted to do a red, white and black quilt.  At that time I was strong and resisted buying it.  I was at the same shop in November and bought the fabric.  I started sewing sometime in October and got all the blocks made.  Then was not really happy about the size.  So I had to find more fabric.  I was able to got back to the same store and they had got all the fabric from their other stores so they had enough for me to make the quilt a little larger.

She also finished this batik beauty. Excellent use of complimentary colors, Nancy! Visit Nancy's blog here to read the rest of the story.

Irene reports this is a favorite pattern for baby or lap quilts, as it is "quilt as you go." Great idea, Irene! She made this quilt just for herself, and each fabric has a special meaning:

Besides the reading theme [Irene is a retired librarian] I included our beloved St. Louis Cardinals and a tribute to the Beatles - I know exactly where I was when they performed on the Ed Sullivan show 50 years ago! There is also a pattern that has a quilt shop and a book shop pictured.

Sandi finished this adorable baby quilt for her new grand-nephew. As you already may know, Sandi names all her quilts with words beginning in "k." She says, "This one is Kwetzalcoatl.  Zackary (born Thanksgiving Day 2013) may not ever be able to say the name of his quilt, but his Mom Leah my niece will.  Quetzalcoatl is the name of a Mexican Dragon by the way." The pattern is Osais by Sally Frey, and Sandi used mostly scraps for it. Go here to read Sally blog post about Zackary's quilt.

Kerry submits a quilt by one of my favorite teachers, Linda Ballard. Kerry started Harmony Square at Road to Califonia and blogs about it here. Very appropriate for March, Kerry!

Sooli conceived and made this incredible 3-D rainbow quilt. I just love it! She says it looks just  like she imagined it in her head -- don't you love it when things come together that way? Visit Sue's Quilty Bits and Bobs here to read the back story.

One of our newest "finishers," Katie, is going great guns! This adorable baby quilt could have made with fabrics from my own scrap bins:

I have to show you a closeup of the quilting Katie did for her newest grandchild -- who should be with us by now!

And look at the labels she found! She says she may go back and add the labels to quilts she made for her other grandchildren also!

Carol Anne may win the prize for "oldest UFO" this month. She doesn't say exactly when she started this one, but it's from a Debbie Mumm book. I know it's been around for a long time, because I have a UFO just like it!

Donna is another newbie who is tearing through the UFOs! Three this month!

First is "Sunset Over Water." Isn't this a stunner, and what a great way to use up scraps! I hope Donna will comment with the name and issue of the magazine where she saw this, because I want to make one, too.

Donna's two-year-old grandson is a big fan of the Disney movie, "Cars." She made this cutie for him -- destined to be a "dragger," I bet. The ultimate compliment for a quilter!

This is "Streaks of Wnter," based on Bonnie Hunter's free pattern "Streaks of Lightning." It's flannel, so it will be very useful for the cold winter Donna (and many of us in the US!) is enduring.

Diane finished this "oh please let Spring come" quilt. It's a Disappearing 4 Patch using two charm packs. I love that shade of green, Diane. And congratulations on the new baby!

Jackie from Manchester, England reports she recently discovered 52 Quilts and was inspired by the 12 in 2014 Challenge to finish two quilts for her local Project Linus. 

Be sure to click on this first photo to see the cute motifs in her "I Spy" tumbler:

And isn't her pastel Whirligig sweet?

Thanks for playing, Jackie!

Oooh, here's a last-minute entry from Donna (that makes four this month!). I love pink! Donna adds that she stitches 5" in from the edge on these tied fleece throws to add stability in case one of the ties comes undone. Clever idea, Donna!

Hey, ChristyLeigh, remember in this challenge YOU decide what is "finished." I generally consider a completely pieced top "finished" because they are sent out to be quilted. Here is ChristyLeigh's March finish:

I might have to beg a favor from Gill. Look at these darling iPad cases she made:

The DH is having fun buying black and silver Union Jack "extras" for his new Mini Cooper. Which he has named "Black jack," by the way.

That's not all Gill made this month:
I was very pleased when you chose number 6 - it was iPad cases: one for me and one I started last October for my Mum's birthday (in November) and never finished in time! Plus they were smallish projects which was perfect for a short month. I also had to make a Gimli and a Frodo outfit or each of my two son's for their school World Book Day dressing up next week!

Betsy sent in this gorgeous Fall quilt. She says "each 9 patch takes anywhere from 20-40 minutes between cutting, sewing, trimming, pressing...   So it has truly been a labor of love.  I started it about 3 or 4 years ago, and it is a pattern from around 2000-ish."
SO worth it, Betsy!

Squeee! I just moments ago found out that there is space for me in my Guild's weekend retreat -- and I have to leave in one hour! So I'll draw for the March UFO Parade giveaway winner Sunday evening. Come back to see who won!

From the desk of your auntmartisignature

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Thursday Knitting Report

Are you a fan of Diana Gabaldon's "Outlander" series? I sure am! Her newest book, "Written in My Own Heart's Blood" should come out next month.

(image from

So I've been listening to the entire series on Audible. Which means I've been knitting, not sewing. Good for Hats for Sailors, not so good for my UFO challenge. Or for making 52 Quilts in 52 Weeks!

Here are the hats I've finished this week.

First up, "Black and Tan." The US Navy summer uniform for commissioned officers in grades O-1 through O-10, chief warrant officers in grades W-2 through W-5 and chief petty officers (also known as CPOs) in grades E-7 through E-9 is a khaki shirt over black trousers. Known colloquially as "black and tans," it is officially called the "service khaki."  The colors inspired me to knit this black-into-tan watch cap. It looks really long in the photo, but will be great with the ribbing cuff turned up.

Same hat, knit with leftover yarn from last year's "Ravellenics" marathon:

I love this hat so much, I might keep it for myself! The yarn is Dalegarn Falk Neons, purchased years ago at Shuttles, Spindles & Skeins in Boulder. I used the green neon in the Seahawks hat and it's almost all gone. Incredibly enough, a fellow Raveler agreed to sell me two skeins from her personal stash. Knitters are the best!

Had to include the wide-angle view in this photo. That's My Little Sailor's dog, Duncan, snoozing in the winter sunshine.

During March, I'm hosting the KAL (knit along) on the Ravelry Hats for Sailors group. We'll be knitting the same pattern I used for the Broncos and Seahawks hats:

The pattern is Rain Down by Robyn Devine, free on Ravelry (which is also free to join!). It's an excellent "first colorwork" project. I'll be including links to colorwork tutorials and plenty of support for first-time colorwork knitters. I've already started knitting my sample:

It matches my nail polish, of course! That's OPI's "I'm Not Really a Waitress." Don't you love their polish names?

I hope you'll come back tomorrow for the March UFO Parade. There are some gorgeous finishes to share!

From the desk of your auntmartisignature