100 Day Project

My interest in the 100 Day Project started when I was viewing some Instagram posts. I read information on the project and ran across this quote:
Creativity is a habit, and the best creativity is the result of good work habits.
Twyla Tharp

I decided to make 2.5″ x 3.5″ small art trading cards only because I had some 2.5″ muslin strips already cut for another project. I liked this small project, because it did not require much time or material preparation. It also gave me the opportunity to record special memories of people, events, places, or things on fabric. This project was a great way to spark my energy and creative process. I chose to thread sketch, applique, collage, or embroider…whatever caught my fancy each morning. 😉
Each day, I added the piece onto a Power Point. Today, I learned how to turn a Power Point into a video.

This was an enjoyable project. Now, I have to figure out what I want to do next. 🤔


This afternoon, I spent some time piecing the blocks for the Tannenbaum quilt. I was able to complete the 15 red and green square blocks for the center of the tree. I also completed the 12 white, red, and green blocks for the sides of the tree.
The next step is to make 14 background blocks. I realized that I need to make two more tubes of the background fabric to have enough to make the 14 blocks.  I laid some of the blocks together in order to get a preview. So far, I have not run across any major hurdles along the way. The tutorial by Donna Jordan certainly has been helpful. I did have a couple of rip and redo, but that is par for the course.

Shop is closed for the weekend. I will be celebrating my granddaughter’s birthday.

Christmas Quilt ~ in July

As summers go, we have had a relatively mild summer. That’s to say we have not had weeks of continuous temperatures above 100. When I was teaching, this part of July was when I was already busy preparing for a new school year. This July, I have decided to prepare for Christmas. Today, I started on a Christmas quilt. I am making the Cozy Quilt Strip Tube Tannenbaum from the pattern design of Daniela Stout. I chose this pattern because I have never made a strip tube quilt, and I thought it would be interesting to try out. I found a great tutorial by Donna Jordan of Jordan Fabrics. I am such a visual learner, and the video tutorial provided the help I needed to understand the pattern. Since I did not use a jelly roll, I needed help in double checking my fabric calculations. Nancy, at Mesquite Bean, helped me with figuring this out.
This morning, I cut the background fabric and the strips.

This afternoon, it took just about thirty minutes to make the three sets of tubes.

Maybe after I finish running errands tomorrow, I might be able to use my new strip tube ruler to cut the blocks. I might even play some Christmas music for motivation. 🎄

I Love Tuesdays

Every Tuesday, I head over to the San Antonio Botanical Gardens for Tai Chi classes. Ming Xie is a delightful and very patient instructor. I am not the most coordinated of students, but everyone there makes the class enjoyable.
It just so happens that the botanical gardens happen to be on the SAME street, a few miles south of one of my favorite quilt shops, the Mesquite Bean. It also happens to be U.F.O. Tuesday at the shop. The back room is filled with quilters working on projects. As I drive pass the quilt shop on my way to the gardens, I tell myself that I will skip the quilt shop this time. But on the way back, my car just pulls in the parking lot…every time. I have been pretty good about sticking to a budget and just going to visit with the quilters and staff. Joy and Nancy are two staff members who are always so helpful and generous with sharing ideas.
Today, Nancy helped me select some fabric for the Christmas tree quilt I plan to start soon. I had purchased some fabric on my Fayetteville trip, but I needed just a bit more. Nancy also helped me read through the pattern and gave me some tips for making this tubular quilt.
I also purchased fabric to complete the Batman Baby quilt.
You can see why I love Tuesdays.
I finished piecing the top.
I chose this super light flannel for the backing.

On the Design Wall

I have been making a few things to welcome my grandson  who will be born in September. In keeping with the Batman decor of his room, I have made some Batman burp cloths and bibs. Today, I started piecing a small quilt. There is research that shows that newborns see primarily in shades of black, gray, and white. I ordered some Batman quilt charms that are mainly these colors. I plan to add some yellow, and maybe some of that dusty blue color of Batman’s clothes. I might add sashing, and two borders.
The four nine patches are on the design wall, along with four corner bat symbol blocks. I need to think about this a bit more.
I already have two baby quilts that I need to bind. These are a bit more colorful.

Peanuts Quilt

As mentioned in an earlier post, my sister asked if I could make a quilt for her son. He will be 50 soon. He has always been a fan of the Peanut characters. He still decorates his home with seasonal Peanut decorations. My sister had been purchasing Peanut character fabric throughout the years. She gave me a tote bag filled with remnants and half yardage of old fabric. The fabric was in good shape, just old. I purchased a panel that had three different character scenes. I chose one for the center, and just built from there. My sister said she would use the other two parts from the panel to make pillows or pillowcases. I purchased red, orange, yellow, and charcoal fabric to make the center boarders. I also used some white and black thin striped fabric, and some white with red polka-dot fabric from my stash. The character fabric was used in making a keyboard quilt border. For the backing, I cut 12.5 inch squares from the character fabric.
I delivered the quilt to my sister today, and she was very happy. My sister is a master gardener. I thought the garden would be a good setting to take the photos of the quilt.

Fabric Quilt Journal

My year-long project for 2018 was based on a book, 52 Tuesdays, by Sandy Gilreath. I loved the idea of making weekly hexagon blocks to represent memories of special people, places, things, or events. The author was very generous with her idea and encouraged the readers to create their own quilt journal. There were 52 Fridays in 2018, so that is the name of my quilt. I also kept a hard copy journal of the process and the memory of each block. It was a learning process for me. I used this as an opportunity to practice quilting skills and learn new skills. My first block was the very first time I thread sketched a piece. I also dabbled in fabric paint, crayons, and pencils. It was a great way to use scraps. If I were to do it differently, I would not complete each hexagon with backing. Sewing the completed hexagons together did not work out for me. I took it to my friend, Jeana, who decided the best thing to do would be to longarm the quilt. She did a great job. She returned it to me a few months ago, but I have been doing other projects…binding is not my favorite thing to do. I needed to complete this project before I continued working on other projects. I spent the afternoon looking at each block and remembering  2018. The stories represented by each block definitely made me smile today.

Christmas in July

It is a hot and humid 94 degrees, and I was inside making Christmas house blocks for the Village quilt.
I do not know what my friends and I were thinking when we decided to make this quilt. It is cute, but there are so many pieces!
If I am going to ever complete this quilt, I knew I needed to come up with a system. A lot of the house pieces are cut, but I have cut some more in order to add variety. It makes it easier to “build” a house when there are many possible fabric combination. All of the character and chimney pieces were cut before we went on our retreat. I find it easier to pull the fabric needed for each house on one morning.
Then, I chain-sew the house and door portions. This is followed by chain-sewing the roof and chimneys. Finally, the roofs and houses are chain sewn.
I may have made too many Christmas houses for this quilt. When it is time for placing them on the design wall, I will decide if I will use all of the Christmas houses or not. My friend, Marti, suggested I make an Advent Calendar by adding a door that opens. Cute idea, but I am not going there. 😉

My favorite Christmas houses.

57 house blocks
75 more to go

Super Hero Avenue

As I was pulling fabrics to donate, I found a remnant of a super hero fabric that I had used to make pillow cases. They characters were the perfect size for fussy cutting and using in the Village quilt that I am making.

The Greater San Antonio Quilt Guild has a Storybooks and Quilts to Go program. I have the number of the contact person, because I may be interested in participating. The kits have quilt themed story books.
Or, I might just do something on my own. When my granddaughter was in kindergarten, I went to be a guest reader in her class. I read Bear Says Thanks by Karma Wilson and Jane Chapman. Bear and his friends all sat on a quilt for story time. As part of the after reading activity I planned, each student made a paper block to build a classroom quilt.
I am thinking of making my own story-quilt kit for the Village quilt. I have friends who are still teaching, and it would be fun to write some lesson plans for them to use after I read the story. It would not be a quilt themed story, but I think the children would enjoy sitting on the quilt to hear the story. Then they could spend time looking and talking about the characters who live in each house.There are quite a few books on homes, community, and maps and it would be easy to create lesson plans based on these books.
I will have to finish this quilt before I even think of building a story kit. The idea is still on my Maybe List.

Fayetteville Fun

Today I am trying to recover from four days of fun in Fayetteville. My friend, Marti, arranged for us to have a quilting retreat in Fayetteville, Texas. It gave me the opportunity to spend time with Diane, a friend I met through Marti. Diane creates beautiful quilts, and I spent the four days learning so much from her. The clown car was packed to capacity, and we said we would have no room for any new purchases…😉 We found the room!
Our plan was for each of us to make the Village quilt. In preparation for this trip, we pooled our fabric remnants and scraps. We also had cut a lot of the pieces needed for this quilt. Marti had seen a variation of this Village pattern, where the doorway piece had a character fabric. We thought it was so cute, so we gathered all of the fabric characters we had in our stashes. Diane donated so much of her fabric to this project.

Before Marti and I met Diane in Fayetteville, we stopped in Luling. Diane had told us about her friend, Denise, who owns the Holly Dee Quilts Shop. The shop has a great selection of Marcia Derse fabric. There was a quilt made of Derse fabric on display, and I just loved it. Denise was so helpful in providing helpful hints on making this curved log cabin quilt. I added to my Derse stash by buying some more of the Treasure Hunt and Art History fat quarters. At this early stage of our retreat, I already had a new project on my list.
We stayed at Wisteria Bend Cottage, a bed and breakfast in Fayetteville. The owner provided such a personal touch and many amenities that made our stay cozy and comfortable. She even had two ironing boards set up for us. The lighting in the house was perfect for our sewing sessions. It was enjoyable drinking my morning coffee on one of the front porch rocking chairs.

Work Stations

After productive morning sessions, we would head out to eat lunch and explore the beauty of Central Texas. On our first outing, we visited La Grange, Texas. Bistro 108 has a menu that is worth visiting more than once. We visited the Texas Quilt Barn in search of background fabric for the Village quilt that Diane is making for one of our Meemaw friends. Diane is so generous with her time and skills. The Texas Quilt Barn will be a year old this August. It had a nice variety of fabric.

These are the results for my first morning session. Diane showed us fabulous short cuts for piecing, measuring, cutting, and so much more.
On the third day of our retreat, we drove to Giddings, Texas. We have had so much rain, so the landscape is filled with every variation of green you can imagine. We were lucky that the weather was still cool-ish in the morning and in the evening.

Diane had told us about a quilt shop in Giddings that had quality fabric at great prices. We drove over 30 miles, on country roads, in the middle of nowhere, to get to Meme’s. After forty minutes, we arrived at our destination, and I could not  believe the amount of cars that were parked on the lawn surrounding the house/shop. Inside, we found a crowd of women, dropping off quilts to be long armed, and carrying bolts of fabric to be cut or purchased. I was able to find $13 dollar Christmas fabric by Moda at half-off prices. We each walked out with a load of fabric.
This adventure was followed by a trip to Round Top, Texas. This is a 610 acre  town in Fayettville County. The 2010 census reported a population of 90. Round Top hosts an antique show twice a year. After lunch at Garden Co., we visited the artisan shops in this scenic shopping area.
After Round Top, we visited the Spoiled Quilter in the town square in Fayetteville. It had been closed on the first two days of our visit. The shop has a unique way of displaying the fabric, making it easy to view and visualize its use.
When we returned to our cozy house in Fayetteville, we would spend our time walking the town square and neighborhoods. Marti provided us with musical DVD’s to watch and made Cosmopolitans for beverage. We managed to get a bit of sewing, and more cutting done in the evenings.

After four days of sewing, cutting, laughing, and friendship, I could barely get up this morning. I need to relax from my retreat before I get started again.
This is what I was able to get done at our retreat:

35 Blocks…only 100 more to go!😉               Close up