Tuesday

I am still waiting for the Bali Bowl pattern to arrive, so in the meantime, I practiced some more thread sketching.
Yesterday, I started out with this blue bird.

I used Tulip fabric markers and  Pentel fabric crayons.

This bird is sort of a repeat of my mascot, Joy. I made it as a gift for one of my sisters.
Then, I decided to try the free Valentine mug rug pattern by Cindy, at Gray Barn Desgins.
I had some scraps that worked perfectly for this cute pattern.
All blocks are pieced and ready to quilt.
This was a fun and easy pattern. Thanks!


I also fooled around a bit with improvising a block from scraps. Those floral pieces are pretty tiny, but I like the way they came out. I do not like the big pink in the center, so I will probably be cutting and piecing some more.

Tomorrow is a busy day, so I probably won’t get any sewing time.
The pattern should arrive tomorrow.

Fantastic Friday

This has been a productive week.
I got to spend some real people time, go for walks, and do some birding.
The last set of the Valentine placemats was finished.

My fourth block for 52 Fridays was all about Celebrating Life.

And I finished the top and backing of a floral and polka-dot quilt that I started on Tuesday.


Now, I am going to get busy and study the tutorial on how to make a fabric bowl.
Thanks to Tierney, (Tierney Creates) for providing the tutorial links, her own process, and encouragement! I ordered the bowl pattern from Purse Patterns. My sister had given me two jelly rolls, so I think I will use these for the bowl. I can’t wait to get started.

Thursday Outing

This was an enjoyable day spent with my older sister.
She gave me two jelly rolls that have a variety of purple strips.
Now, I am really tempted to try to make one of those fabric bowls as posted on Tierney Creates.
I know that this is way beyond my skill set, but it is on my list of Things I Hope to Make One Day.
Saturday is Visit Your Local Quilt Shop Day, but my sister and I made our visit today.
We went to Las Colchas, where the proprietor, Francine, is a family friend.
I asked Francine if she would have a class on making a fabric bowl, and she said she was going to see about setting a class up. It would be great if she did.
While at the shop, I purchased some fabric for the backing of my floral quilt.
I have plenty of polka dot material that I plan to piece for the backing, but I needed a bit more.

Then, my eyes went directly to this super colorful bird fabric.
I know, I need to get off this bird thing…but this fabric is gorgeous.

I almost didn’t buy it, since I have no real plan or design in mind.
But I knew I would regret not getting some.
I’ve decided it is okay to buy fabric just because it is beautiful.
It will not go to waste.

The floral quilt top is all pieced.
Tomorrow, I plan to piece the backing.

Bonita

The San Antonio Botanical Gardens is going through some major improvement.
I decided to go see the progress.
Of course, the gardens are all in winter mode, but the area is still a beautiful, peaceful place.
My favorite part is the Texas section where you can find the ducks and turtles.

The ducks were enjoying the sun as much as I was!
Of course, I stopped by the new gift shop and I heard something say, “Take me home.”
So, I now have an owl that I named Bonita, perched over my sewing machine.

Bonita watched over me as I finished piecing the last of the blocks on my floral quilt.

I played with the arrangement until all I saw was polka-dots.
Then I called my sisters and asked for their input.
This is what we have so far.
I will let it hang on the wall for a day or two, before I piece it together.
Now, I am trying to find the perfect name.
The first name that came to mind was Floral Fantasy.
These are other names that are floating in my head: Botanical Beauty, Funky Florals, and El Jardin.
I need to set the whole thing aside and start on something else! 

 

What’s On My Design Wall?

The first time I visited Valli and Kim’s Quilt Shop, I was blown away with all of the beautiful fabric.
They have such a variety of color and design…it left me spinning.
I left without buying fabric, because I did not know what I wanted.
Two days later, I returned, determined to buy fabric.
There was a quilt on display that caught my eye.
It was simple, yet, colorful, and full of life.
I really want to design my own quilts, but this design was too pretty to pass up.
The quilt was based on a pattern, Midnight Blue, by  Pat Fryer at Villa Rosa Designs.
The fabric used in the display was from the Kaffe Fasset floral line.
The display quilt had repeat floral fabric with one color of the Moda Bascic Grey polka dot fabric.

I knew I wanted more colors, in both the floral and the polka dot fabric.
At first, I was timidly trying to choose 20 different florals, just by looking and pulling one or two at a time.  The shop owner cleared a table and told me to throw out as many bolts as I wanted.
She did not have to tell me twice.
I threw out just about every bolt they had, and then gradually pulled out the ones that I did not want.
It was so much fun playing with the fabric.
Then, they cut 20 fat sixths for me.
When it came to choosing the polka dots, I just threw in 20 colors at random.

I finally got started on the quilt today and I have enjoyed every minute of it.
Everything is cut, paired, and ready to go.
I made four blocks today and splashed them on my design wall.
They are not in order yet.
Arranging these blocks will be more fun ahead for me.

POSTSCRIPT

I lost all sense of time and finished 12 blocks.
Only 8 more blocks to go.

I am just laying them out as I go. I will think about the layout when all blocks are completed.

 

52 Fridays: January 26

When I first thought of doing a journal quilt as in the book, 52 Tuesdays: A Quilt Journal by Sandy Gilreath ,  my concern was that I might have difficulty finding  thoughts, ideas, or experiences to record each week.
Wrong!
I have been finding it difficult to choose only one idea for the weekly block journal entry.
This week alone is filled with possibilities…the Cowboy Breakfast, Pie Day, my birding experience, my daily reading from Gunilla Norris, Simple Ways… so many inspirations from which to choose.
For this week’s entry, I chose to create a Celebration of Life hexagon block.
According to Days of the Year calendar, today is a day set aside to celebrate life, focusing on our children and grandchildren.
I decided to create a tree out of felt and buttons. The large heart buttons represent my three sons.
The smaller red heart buttons represent my daughter-in-laws. The pink and the purple small heart buttons represent their children.

It still needs some more quilting on the sky portion, but this is what I have so far:
Friday, January 26

Celebration of Life

Background: Cotton memo; blue and green pieced
Technique: Embroidery, hand quilting
Batting: 100% Cotton
Embellishment: Buttons

Valentine’s Day Projects Completed!

There was a change in plans today.
I did go bird watching, but only in the neighborhood.
The birds seemed about as happy as I am…just enjoying the weather.
I completed the last of the Valentine projects today.
The other day, I found this set of  bird and feathers fat quarters in my stash.
I bought this set about a year ago.
For the backing, I used some denim fabric.
I always have some denim yardage or some recycled jeans handy.
 

  

I just want to say that I tip my hat to all of you who quilt your own quilts. 
My experience with quilting these small projects has left me with sore shoulders and back.
I’m not giving up on FMQ my own quilt one day…but I am putting it on hold.
Now, onto starting a floral and polka-dot quilt!

Valentine Placemats Update

There was a bag of black and white fabric in my stash that I decided to use for a pair of placemats.

I also made some fabric gift bags.

The last set of placemats is already cut so I can finish these on Tuesday. My plan is to take advantage of the good weather and go birding at the Botanical Gardens tomorrow.
Hopefully, I can get started on a new quilt some time this week.

Valentine Placemats

If you have only one smile in you give it to the people you love.
Maya Angelou 

I reached my goal of making one set of Valentine place mats today. I had the pieces cut out, so everything was ready for me to complete this afternoon. I cut these from the same heart pattern I drew and used to make the scrappy pillow the other day.These reversible mats gave me the opportunity to practice a  heart design for FMQ. My heart FMQ came out a bit abstract, but I am satisfied with the product.
My granddaughter enjoys setting the table. I am hoping these owl place mats put a smile on her face when she sets the table.