Friday, October 25, 2013

Do Me a Favor?

...or how about I do one, or one hundred or so? This week's major accomplishments are doing the wedding and shower favors.

The favors above are for the bridal shower, which is movie themed. A bag of microwave popcorn, and a director photo frame keychain. The decorations for the shower are all black, gold, and red. We found a rubber stamp that said "Real Love Stories don't have endings" and thought that was pretty perfect for this shower.

The wedding color is cobalt blue, and these little ornaments came with a gold hanger. We switched out the hangers for blue ribbon, added a silver bead and a tag that has the names of the bride and groom and the wedding date.

Neither of those favors look complicated, and they aren't, but it still took quite a bit of time to get them done.

I am up to 54 blocks quilted on Thrice Broken Dishes, so 90 more to go! I am really hoping this will be a really productive weekend quilting wise, because I know I'd be a little less stressed if I could get this quilt crossed off my to do list and can start the next wedding quilt.

The bridal shower is next weekend, so after this weekend I'll likely be helping DD#3 who is the maid of honor with the shower stuff. The shower will be here at our house, and I still haven't finalized the menu, so it will be a busy non-quilty week next week.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Not Much Quilting Going On

Here is the total of my quilting for the week. Two blocks on Thrice Broken Dishes. I didn't do a practice of this pattern, and I probably should have, but I'm guessing I'll get better, and by the time the quilt is finished being quilted, the first two wobbly blocks won't stand out too much. It will definitely look better after I wash the pink quilt pounce off. DD#2's wedding is December 8th, so I need to get to work on this!

It has been wedding central around here. The bridal shower is in two weeks, and there is still a lot to do for it. We're trying to wrap up the last of the wedding shopping. I tried looking for new shoes to wear to the wedding, but after trying several stores, I think I'm going to stick with a pair I already have and are comfortable. I'll be chasing the twins part of the time, and comfy shoes are more important than fancy shoes I'm thinking. At least all the dresses for everyone are purchased!

Tonight we started working on the wedding favors, and they are looking cute. It will likely take one or two more sessions to get them finished. I am hoping I can get the shower favors together in one evening, because there aren't as many and they are simpler.

It's funny to think that as soon as the craziness is over with this wedding, we'll only have a short break before the craziness starts on the next one! Two weddings fourteen weeks apart, the second being at our house! Yup, wedding central around here.

DS the Elder is moving to Indiana, and he's leaving next week! We will need to store his stuff for a while, so DH completely emptied the shed this week, and got rid of a bunch, and sorted through everything. Now DD#3's stuff is in the back, because she'll be here the longest. DD#2's stuff is in the front corner, because she'll be moving soon since she's getting married, and now there is plenty of room to store DS the Elder's stuff. Looks like we'll be packing a moving truck with his stuff the day after the wedding! He'll fly back for his sister's wedding, and move his stuff then. I'm glad I'm not moving right now, I'd hate to think of packing all of our stuff on top of everything else going on.

This was my first full week of having my babysitting hours doubled. It does really make things harder to get done, but I expected that. I'm sure I'll settle into a routine soon enough.

I hope all of you are getting some sewing time in. Someone should be quilting!

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Easy Street Is Finished!!!

I am so excited to have Easy Street finished! I really love this quilt, and so does DH, but it's being given as a gift. I loved this mystery, and I'm so glad I gave in and participated.

Now I'll be back to quilting on Thrice Broken Dishes. I'll be using stencils for the rest of the quilting on that, and I haven't used stencils for a while. I've always had pretty good results with stencils, so I'm not worried about that.

I have lots of quilts that need to be pieced, but I still have Double Delight in a pile, already pin-basted and waiting patiently for it's turn. Double Delight is the only Bonnie Hunter mystery quilt I didn't finish within a year. There are a lot of reasons for that. I changed the setting, made it bigger, and made pieced borders for it. It was also my first mystery quilt. At the time I started it, I didn't have the skills to quilt it myself. The thing is, I think the main reason it isn't finished is because it's for MY bed, and I keep putting quilts for others ahead of it . I now have the skills to finish the quilting myself, and after I finish quilting Thrice Broken Dishes, that will be the next one in queue to quilt. I will definitely be spending more time piecing after that. DS the Younger's wedding quilt is not even started and the wedding is in March!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Tortoise and the Hare

I think I tend to be a bit of the hare in the old fable. I like to speed ahead on a project, and if something comes up to disturb my progress, I like to be far enough ahead to not "feel behind" due to interruptions. Life is busy enough right now, that I am having to learn to be a bit more tortoiselike. Small bits of time do add up if you are consistent. This isn't my preferred way to work, but it's all I have to work with right now. Better bits of progress than none.

I have been quilting on Easy Street as much as possible. It may be 20-30 minutes, or occasionally a couple hours. I am now working on the last quarter to be quilted. I'm hoping to finish it this weekend, depending on what comes up.

I sewed the binding on Thrice Broken Dishes. I don't do my bindings by hand, I expect to be ticketed by the quilt police any time now. I have a bad thumb and I just can't do much in the way of handwork. I use a serpentine stitch and just stitch it with the sewing machine. I make quilts to be used, not judged, and a machine stitched binding can take a lot of abuse. The binding on the quilt on my bed was hand stitched (by someone else, not me) and I recently had to restitch it because it was coming undone. I went ahead and used the serpentine stitch like I do on most of my quilts, and no problems now. I don't mind the look of machine stitched bindings, but if you prefer hand stitched bindings, and are capable of doing them, I think that's great! I have some health issues that makes some things difficult, and I'd rather quilt untraditionally than not at all.

I still have to do some stencil work on Thrice Broken Dishes, but the quilt is stabilized from all the stitch-in-the-ditch quilting, and I have already quilted the border, so putting on the binding now may be unusual, but it's not going to be a problem. The plus to working this way is that when the quilting is finished, the quilt is also finished. I couldn't take this approach with Easy Street, because there is no ditch quilting holding everything in place. 

I chose a purple binding for Easy Street, and if I get the quilting done, I will try to get the binding on and cross that quilt off my to do list!

Our big scooter event last weekend was a success. We ended up with about 50 people here for dinner, and everyone had a good time. We got lots of compliments on the backyard makeover and the food!

DS the Elder just got hired for a job out of state, so we need to be helping him get ready to move again. He just moved back to town about six months ago, but now he's off again.

DD#2 will need lots of help packing as well. She will be moving when she gets married in December. She's only moving a couple hours away, and we'll make her room into a guest room so she can come visit with her husband or even without when he's traveling for work.

The next big event around here besides packing is DD#2's bridal shower in the beginning of November.

DD#3 started her new job this week and she's loving it! We were expecting her to graduate college in December, but there is a problem with two of her classes that should have been caught long before now. She is bummed about the delay, but no help for it, she needs one more semester. This part time job at the college is a blessing, and at least she'll have some income now while she's finishing her degree.

I was running through the next few quilts that need to made, and I realized that I need almost all big quilts for next year. I know of at least five big quilts that I need next year, but three more I'd like to do. I'm not sure what I'll actually get done, but I have plenty to keep me out of trouble!

Friday, October 4, 2013

Quilting Away Ten Minutes at a Time

I have actually been sewing, in between everything else going on. The thread I ordered for Easy Street was on backorder, and since I had some time to sew, I started quilting Thrice Broken Dishes first.

I stitched-in-the-ditch between all the blocks, and also between the borders. Since everything was pretty stable after all the ditch quilting, I went ahead and quilted some simple loops in the border. I will go ahead and bind this quilt before I finish the quilting. I plan to use a stencil in each block, and that will take a while since there are 144 blocks. I bought a pink quilt pounce to mark the lines, since I didn't think blue or white would work well.

My thread for Easy Street finally got here on Wednesday, so I switched which quilt I was working on. I need Easy Street finished for the beginning of November.

I'm just quilting swirls in an allover pattern, in a great variegated thread, King Tut color Cleopatra. It has all the colors in this quilt, and here I thought I had picked something unusual. I have 1/4 of the quilt quilted so far, I've been quilting like a mad woman! If I have ten minutes or more, I've been trying to run downstairs and quilt a few swirls. I had a pretty good chunk of time yesterday to sew, and that was so helpful in making some progress.

The weekend is a wash. The big scooter event that ends at out house is Sunday, so tomorrow I need to start working on food, and finish up the cleaning. I've made a lot of progress on the clutter in little chunks of time during the week. DH has been smoking meat for the past couple days, and today he's making homemade barbecue sauce. He does the meat and sauce, I do the desserts and sides. This is our fifth El Scoot event, and we pretty much have it down. There may be as many as 50 people here on Sunday, we'll see.

Oh, and with all my "extra" time this week, DD#2 and I got the wedding invitations and the bridal shower invitations mailed!