Seattle

My trip to Seattle was a great get away. My daughter-in-law is a fun, fantastic travel companion.
We got to visit with my brother, enjoy cool weather, and experience Seattle. Our first stop was at the Seattle Design Center where my brother is the vice-president of Trammell-Gagne. After drooling over gorgeous fabric, I was given some free samples.  I have no idea how I will use these fabrics, but it will be fun just thinking about it.
The photo does not do justice to the quality and beauty of this fabric.
We sort of had an itinerary, but mostly, we acted on impulse. One of our impulses was to ride the ferry to Bainbridge, after we had already put in a morning of sight seeing different Seattle areas. We hopped on the ferry and walked onto Bainbridge Island, with no plan, low phone battery, and one battery charger. It is amazing how much we depend on the phone now. We used it for our map, our bus schedule, and eventually for Lyft. We walked up hills to a bar that kindly let us sit and recharge our phones. On our way to the bar, I saw quilts hanging out in front of all of the shops….I had walked into a quilt heaven. It just so happened that it was the day of the Bainbridge Quilt Festival. Since I could not use my phone camera, you will have to view the online site for the Bainbridge Quilt Festival that has all the 2019 quilts on display.
I also got to visit the Undercover Quilt Shop USA on Virginia Street, right by Pike’s Market. They had a beautiful, varied selection of fabric, and I purchased some fabric to make a quilt.
Everywhere I looked in Seattle, I could see designs, colors, lines, and spaces that were inspirational. What a great trip.
Now, I am recovering from a cold and cough that I caught while in Seattle. I guess it is a small price to pay for such a wonderful trip.
Today was the first day I felt better, so I made a little hand-stitched square while watching TV.

I have three quilts to bind, one quilt to finish, and one quilt to start. I think tomorrow will be the day I get back into my sewing room.

Quick Fix

My Juki sewing machine is back in order. Apparently, there was a screw loose…in the bobbin encasement…not me!🤪 It is the tiniest of screws, and we can’t figure out what made it loose.  The technician says he’s never seen a case like this. He kept asking me if I had adjusted it. I didn’t even know it was there! The loose screw was the culprit causing the tension problems. After the technician adjusted the tension, he checked out other parts and tidied up a bit. No charge, since I had just had it serviced this summer. I tried the machine out at the store and it seems to be back on track. I’ll put it to use when I return to my sewing room. Now there is no reason to be looking at new machines. Well, I’ll still keep looking, but there is no need to buy another one😁

Happy Dance

Last Sunday, I set three goals that I wanted to reach by today.
My three goals were : exercise; complete the 130 house blocks; and have fun.
Put a by exercise. I started Zumba classes this week and I. Love. It! My Meemaw friends and I danced and laughed through the sessions. It felt like a party, and not exercise. A bit sweaty, but fun just the same.
Put a by House Blocks. I completed all 130 houses. I may choose to make the quilt into a throw size and not use all of the house blocks. The leftovers can always be used in another project.
Put a fun. It has been a FUN week.

130 House Blocks

Also, I had a great time with family and friends at a baby shower for my daughter-in-law. My granddaughter told me that I was present on Grandparents day because she took the Flat Grammy I made. Apparently, I had a great time in third grade. I helped her with her spelling test, had fun in PE, and got a cookie for being there. The time spent in the back pack left Flat Grammy in a bit of disarray, but there was no permanent injury.
Another great piece of news is that my eldest son has moved back to the Austin area. I now have all three sons close to home.
I think this calls for a Happy Dance!
I hope you have had a great week also.
Thanks to all who have encouraged me to stick with the house quilt. It really helped me get this done.
The next two weeks will be very busy for me. My plan tomorrow is to clean and reorganize my sewing room before I shut it down for the next two weeks. It will be good to get away for a bit and re-energize.

Slowly…

…but surely! The Village quilt is coming along. Today’s work session was all about prepping for making the roofs. One of our friends had cut the chimneys for us on one of our Wabi-Sabi days. The task of pairing the roofs with the houses is done. So, the next step will be piecing the roofs.
I did take time out today to do something special on this project. My sister, Emma Virjan, sent me three characters she created in her Pig in a Wig book series. If you check out her website, you will see some book trailers that my son created. The website gives contact information for schools or librarians wanting to book an author’s visit. There are also some resources for children and for teachers.
I finally got an ink cartridge to print these adorable creatures. I also printed a picture of myself, since I plan to use this as the label for the quilt.
Just finishing these four houses made me feel like I am making progress.

Focus

Next week, I plan to be away from my sewing room. This made me determined to do as much piecing as possible on the Village quilt. My goal today was to piece 52 house blocks, so I had to work on focusing and staying on task.
The pattern calls for cutting four pieces for each of the houses, minus the roof. My friend, Diane, showed me a short cut. I cut a 5″square that would be for the two side panels. I chained stitched the door and door tops first. Then I chain stitched one side of the 5″ square to one side of the door/top piece. The next step involved folding the remaining side of the 5″ square to the first end side of the door/top piece that I had just sewn.  This forms a type of tunnel. Then I matched the two side door seams, held the house square fabric taunt, and cut. The end result is the 4.5″ x 5.5″ house… with a little less hassle.
I have three more houses to make. I plan to make a house with  story book characters my sister,
Emma Virjan, created. I need to get a new ink cartridge for my printer before I can make these.

I am having fun with this project again. I love the different characters in the doorway. This is quite a scrap buster project. My friends and I pooled our scraps and remnants and then chose what we needed. We also shared character fabric. Diane had a treasure trove of character fabric that she graciously shared.

The fabric for the triangle roof has already been cut. I just need to sub-cut the white fabric for the corners. I already have the fabric cut to the required measurement for the strips. I need to divide the 52 house blocks into two groups. One group will have chimneys, the other will not. Or, depending on how I feel at the time, they might all be without chimneys.

House Quilt

In July, two of my friends and I had our own quilt retreat in Fayetteville, Texas. We were each making the Village quilt, from Jumble. What were we thinking? This is a labor intensive quilt.
I managed to make a few when we were together in July. Since then, I have only opened the box to cut more houses and roofs. Today, I managed to make some more houses. I now have 70 houses…ONLY 30 more to go.
In order to see an end in sight, I placed some of my finished blocks onto my design wall. They are not arranged in any particular order at this time. It made me feel a little better to see that I was actually getting somewhere with this quilt. In fact, it actually made me happy. My two friends will be working on their house quilt when they go to a quilting retreat this week. I opted out of the retreat since I had already had plans for something else on these dates. They will probably finish theirs while at the retreat.
My plan is to make the thirty house all at one time. Then, I will make the 30 roofs. Followed by attaching the roofs to the houses.
I still have to cut the sashing and borders, but I will do that when the houses are completed.

Since I had all the materials needed for making the fabric dolls for Flat Grammy, I decided to make the fabric dolls for the Meemaws. I had already made Flat Kaye, and the other two Meemaws wanted their own fabric flat doll.
Flat Kaye…based on the Flat Stanley Project. Flat Grammy

Now, the Flat Meemaws are ready to travel.

Flat Grammy

For the past three years, I have attended the elementary school Grandparent’s Day activities at the invitation of my granddaughter. This year, I have a schedule conflict that will keep me from attending the event at my granddaughter’s new school. I know I will be arranging a school lunch date with her some time in the near future, but I am really bummed out to be missing the event next week.
Then I remembered about Flat Stanley. My granddaughter and I have a lot of fun joking around. I think she would get a kick out of me making a Flat Grammy for her to take to school in her backpack. I drew a selfie on a scrap of muslin and used fabric crayons and pencil colors. I ironed the muslin onto a one-sided fusible stabilizer. Then I added a grey floral fabric backing before stitching along the drawn lines. Pinking shears were used to cut around the fabric doll. Now, I just have to write a corresponding note.
I would still rather be there in person, but this will have to do for now.