Staying Focused

One of my daily readings reminded me to focus on what I can control. This led to me focusing on making crafts, which is about the only thing I can control these days.

Sew Can She had a free pattern for making flat travel/storage bags. I won’t be traveling for a while, but I made three bags anyway.

I had some quilt squares left over from a Village House quilt that I made. I used the squares to make mug rugs.
Then I made some hexagon mug rugs/ coasters that open up. You can place the bottom of a wine glass inside the mug rug.

I had a Go Fish Pattern by Fishsticks to make potholders and oven mitts. I had just enough remnants and fat quarters to make three sets. The pattern calls for regular and thermal batting, which I happened to have.

My long arm quilter finished quilting the three Halloween quilts that I made. After binding the quilts, I decided to make a tote with the Halloween remnants and scraps. I made an envelope pillow, and placed a pocket in front. This tote can be used for carrying the quilt and a Halloween book in the front pocket.
I continue to make masks to have on hand, in case anyone needs one. Stitches Quilting has a tutorial on making a very easy pouch to store the pouch.

With some remnants, I was able to make a few buttoned coin purses. I made some in different sizes, lined and unlined.

After weeks of putting off starting a new quilt, I finally decided to get to it. I have studied the tutorial on the Lone Star quilt by Jordan Fabrics. Donna provides excellent instructions and demonstrations in her tutorials. Last year, I studied and followed Donna’s tutorial for making a strip tube Christmas quilt. This Lone Star quilt is quite a challenge for me, but Donna’s tutorial is very helpful. I cut the fabric on Saturday. I pieced half of the star diamonds yesterday, and the other half today. This quilt will be for my niece who now lives in New York. She loves everything Texas, so I used the Moda wildflower jelly roll to make the star.

Focusing on these crafts and starting a new quilt has made the days go by a bit easier. I hope everyone is well.
Stay safe.

Plates and Mugs

My three siblings are all good cooks. The cooking gene missed me all together. In fact, I think my kitchen is a waste of space. I would like to remodel it into a third sewing room.😁
My brother, Joseph, is an excellent chef. He is self-taught, and has taken lessons and training. On his last trip to Spain, he took a class and learned how to make paella…my favorite dish!  I will be visiting him soon, and I am looking forward to some great meals. I do not want to go empty-handed, so I made him some fabric-rope place mats. I used the remaining material from the plates to make some coordinating mug rugs.

It’s a Wrap, by Susan Breier, has directions for making the coiled plates. I have made these before, but each time I have learned new tricks to improve the process. I used to wrap the fabric around the rope all in one sitting. I thought this would be better in order to not have to stop while sewing. However, it was tedious to wrap 15 yards (X4) of the clothesline. Also, the clothesline tended to twist. Now, I wrap as I go along, and I find this is much better. When I stop to wrap more fabric, I also take the opportunity to see if I missed any of the zig-zag stitches. It is easier to fix a section as I go along, instead of waiting to the very end. This book has so many wonderful patterns for baskets, purses, and different shaped bowls. I hope to make one of the purses one day.

The mug rugs are from All People Quilts. There is a Coffee Time Quilt block pattern on this site that is very easy to make. I added a heart on one of the mugs to make it special for my brother.

Now, we will have some pretty place mats to use for that delicious meal he will be making!

Good News/Bad News

Good News
One of my sons just moved and I wanted to make a special house warming present.They use the fabric coiled rope plates that I had made them last year, so I made them a new set. I used the leftover fabric to make rug mugs. Originally, I had planned to make a basket to store the plates, but I found a nice round table basket at Target.

Bad News
As I was adding the orange binding to one of the fabric plates, my sewing machine started making an awful noise. I followed the trouble shooting suggestions in the manual, but the machine just kept making a sharp noise. I called the dealer and was given more trouble shooting suggestions, but nothing worked. I am hoping that this is not as major as the loud sound leads me to believe. I will not be able to take the machine in for another two weeks. I was planning to take it to a quilt retreat that my friend had planned for us. I guess I will have to take my Viking machine. I pulled out my trusty Viking to finish the fabric mats. The Viking is a good machine, but the Juki runs so much smoother. I have been very satisfied with the Juki, except for the mechanism for winding the bobbin. The spool pin bobs up and down and eventually falls off, especially when the spool of thread is not full. I have taken it back to the dealer to see if I am doing something wrong, and it is just the design of the machine. I was given a smaller insert to use instead of the cap, but it still does not work. I end up having to hold down the shaft, which makes it a start and stop operation.
When I return in two weeks, I hope to get my Juki to the shop and get it running again. I have drawn up some plans and purchased fabric for another quilt.

Hot Day

It is 5:30 PM and it is HOT! 101 in the shade…and no relief in sight. I stayed inside as much as possible today.
It was a good day for working in my studio. I had the AC and fans blowing.

I plan to meet up with a friend this Friday. I have not seen her since 1976, when we worked together in Georgetown,Texas. I made these house mug rugs for her, using the flying geese block.

My Meemaw friends liked these and now they want to make some on a craft day. When we do make these, I plan to use the no-waste technique that I learned from reading Melanie’s blog at Catbird Quilt Studio. I tried it out and made four house mug rugs like this one:

It was so much more efficient to use this method. This method yields four of the same fabric flying geese. I plan to make three more house mug rugs. Then I will be able to mix and match and make a set of different houses.

Today, I made a different type of house mug rug. I drew a pattern for a house, then cut out a door and windows. This is a good project to use up my larger stash pieces.

When I was out shopping yesterday, I ran across some duck fabric that I thought my daughter-in-law would like. I took pictures of the fabric and asked if she would like some pillows. She said yes, so I made these this afternoon.

I will be closing up my studio for a few days, since I will be pet sitting at my son’s house.
I was debating as to whether I should leave my sewing machine at home or take it with me. The decision is to leave it at home. I I have some reading and visiting that will take up my time.
And, I think I might visit my sister and jump in her pool!


I just returned from my granddaughter’s birthday party that was held in one of those bouncing house gyms. Whew!
The energy in that gym was powerful! The children stopped only to refuel on cake and snacks. Then, the energy level really rose to the ceiling.
It was so enjoyable to see the children having such a great time. I was able to spend time with my two youngest grandchildren.
This morning, before I left for the party, I managed to make four mug rugs.
I am beginning to build up some stash again, so I thought I would put it to good use.

The next birthday is in September.
This will give me some time to work off all the cake and ice cream from this month of birthday celebrations.
Who am I kidding?
There is always something to celebrate, right?