Sunday, February 3, 2013

Works in progress

Do you remember the post a few posts back where I showed the fat 8ths our little retreat group passed out to each other as a challenge?  I've been working on some of them.  I can't show you my thinking process for Friend Marilyn's because I know she reads this blog.  I don't think the others do.
MY biggest challenge is making what I want to do fit into a 12.5 inch finished size.  Many of the ideas are 8 inch or 20 inch or any other inch but 12.  I'm using the enlarge or decrease button on the copy machine at work a lot, holding a piece of 12 inch square paper up to the light to see if they'll fit. 

These little gems all need an appointment with the iron, but you get the idea, anyway.
 The little yellow petal is just basted on.  I have to live with it awhile to see if I like it "plucked."
 I like how this one turned out.
 The challenge fabric is the butterfly (as yet without embroidered antennae and legs.)  Somehow, in that very busy fabric I saw this shape and exclaimed to Friend Marilyn,"there's a butterfly!"  So I fussy cut and added just one flower.  Very minimal but in person it looks very elegant.
 This whole block was a challenge to me.  I have never done the orange peel thing and why I decided to try it now I'll never understand.  But I did.  I raided my batiks and only purchased one.  The challenge fabric is the rust red colored one paired with the more orange colored one. 
I found the blocks for this "utility" quilt in the bottom of my fabric drawers last summer.  I think it was probably the second thing I ever pieced.  Just a pile of these simple square in a square blocks.  I remember when I did them but can't remember how old I was.  Younger than now, at any rate.  I decided last summer to dig into the stash and find something to piece them together with and then scrounged for some scraps to back it.  Voila!  A utiltiy quilt.  I even layerd and pinned it. Then folded it up and tucked it back into the drawer.  Well, awhile ago I heard of a place that rents space for crafters and one of the services they offer is the use of a long arm machine for - wait for it, wait for it  - $10. a DAY.  I'm editing a little here....the machine they rent is a Handi Quilter Sweet Sixteen, not a full sized quilting machine. Either way, it's one way to get this one quilted and done.
    I've never used a long arm machine.  I've never quilted a quilt by machine.  I barely have a machine that does more than sew a straight line and even then it depends on who is doing the sewing.  But I decided I'd call and see what I needed to do to learn on something that really didn't matter what it looked like in the end.  This puppy.    I made an appointment to use the machine for yesterday.  I was excited.  For $10 and the thread, I'd have this thing actually earning its keep.
We woke up yesterday to 8 inches of snow and counting.   I cancelled.  I was bummed the whole day. I put it back in storage.  I looked at the calendar.  Someday.....


  1. Love your applique. Those colors are my favorite (in first picture). I love applique. I've never tried an orange peel either and really like what you have done. Looks great. Could you tell me more about that long arm and where I should call. I'm interested too.

  2. Boy, you're a busy girl! I Love that cute flower with the falling petal. And your long-time UFO! I hope you manage to get it out again and get it quilted!