Saturday, August 27, 2011

A Quilt for Irene

Having survived hurricane Rita in 2005, and i really feel it was "survival," I know that there is going to be someone from irene who is without a house, or all their belongings and who a quilt will bring comfort, so instead of sitting powerless and i do whenever there is a natural disaster, i started putting together some squares i had started and they are now my quilt for irene. Im sure there will be a drive for quilts eventually and i will send it.

Hurricane rita was the hurricane that came thru east texas about a week or two after katrina hit new orleans. We thought we might get a little rain, we live 165 miles inland! but it did alot more than that. Rita didn't get alot of covereage because new orleans was such a mess, but it did affect my life. We were out of power for 2 and a half weeks, during the storm the roof was blowing off the house i was in, we spent hours collecting buckets of water that was just pouring into the house, i remember feeling the rumble of the cement floor it was a tornado that ripped through forest down the road. The wind was amazing, for 10 hours straight we listened to 100 mile an hour winds rip through the trees, we had a pen of weanlings who were just bawling the whole storm... talk about heartbreaking, there was nothing we could do for them, no shelter we could offer. ugh... i hate thinking about it and i know that lives will be changed, homes lost, dreams broken because of irene and i know that i can make someone feel a little less vulnerable and devistated with a quilt... so im making mine.

Its a modified irish chain out of 2 1/2 and 1 1/2 inch scraps, ive been making the 9 patches for a while now and i have almost enough to put together a full size top, so im going to finish it the next couple days.

Irish Chain Quilt

I have had alot of good quality time in my sewing room this past week, i have loved it (My house is a wreck, but there is always tomorrow)... i think im going to start calling it my quilt studio, i like the sound better and i can retreat to my studio and be an obsessive artist and everyone will say, "ah yes, you know how she is when shes in her studio, nothing else exists!."

Know whats funny, i am enjoying the scrapiness of the irish chain and another one im working on, i find mismatched blocks comforting, the last few things ive worked on, the stripes, the red and blues that im making now... lol they are scrappy but too matchy matchy for me. To me, this irish chain is a scrap quilt and it makes me happy.

Here are a couple other shots i took this morning.

Recycled Fabric for Striped Quilts

some more stripes... im loving stripes!

Ive decided the best way to organize my odd quilting fabric is to leave them as shirts until im ready to use them. So... i now have a closet of shirts, this is my "pastel stripe" collection.

striped quilt

and whats this... a little box of stripes???

once ive cut up a shirt and used part it... to keep it organized im cutting the rest of it into 6 1/2, 3 1/2, 2 1/2 and 1 1/2 squares and some strings as well of course. All the other squares im throwing in bins for that size but my stripes are special and they have their own little box.

wow... im sounding really weird about these stripes... ill stop now. My prayers are going out to the east coast. Hunker down and hold tight, you will get thru this!!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

my new sauna

I have a new sauna, my sewing room. I had the morning off yesterday and i worked sewing and cutting, i had sweat rolling down my face, at one point as cutting i dripped on the fabric. It was a nice sauna experience. I kept taking breaks to the rooms that are air conditioned... I went outside at one point and because there was a breeze (blowing from the direction i don't have windows) it felt cooler outside than inside... and it was 105 outside!

It is over 100 again today and its forecasted to be over 100 degrees for the next 10 days. We still have not gotten any rain, in fact a pretty big storm system is headed our way right now but when you look at the next 6 hours forecast map, it breaks up right before it gets to my house. literally right before. This drought and heat wave is getting scary. We have decided to give away all of the horses we can (we have 30) but i doubt we will get rid of many, if i can reduce it any, it will make feeding them this year a little easier. Right now I'm looking for hay because our pastures are dust. we don't normally start looking for hay till December. In the past our horses would be in butt high grass munching away....  hay in the past has been 25 a big round roll and we will be lucky to find it for 75 or under.... at that price, they are not going to get as much hay as we like them to have and we will be feeding more feed.

Just to give you an idea how mind blowing this is, we have had 100 degrees or hotter for 42 days in a row, 10 more forecasted. On average, we get 7 days a YEAR in the triple digits! We are breaking every drought and heat record there is!

anyways, enough about weather... I'm so tired of the weather i could spit.

quilting!!!! I started this:

Striped Stars Quilt

i have smaller pieces from the striped shirt quilt, i think I'm going to use them this way with some different centers on the stars. I also have a solid lavender vintage sheet that I'm thinking i will use for sashing. I just loved the pastel stripes so much!!!

I have also hit thrift stores for more vintage sheets. I found these three for only 4.50 today!

Vintage Sheets

OK, sorry for the bad pics, i took this one in the back seat of the truck since i really don't want Ralph to know that while he was suffering alone at Zippy's, i went to a thrift store!!! but... pretty pretty pretty!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

does anyone else do this?

When i get an idea for a quilt, I cant just write an idea for a quilt down, i HAVE to make a block or two of it. I have blocks all over my sewing room of ideas, some are now quilts in progress... others, well they are random blocks, in various places that have no home. I guess im going to save them because someday they may be worked into a quilt or maybe a quilt back. But... do yall do this or are you content with seeing an idea on paper?

Mostly what ive worked on this week is trying to get control of the piles of fabric in my sewing room. Of course i keep getting sidetracked. This is how the process goes. I am sorthing through the pile (i am up to 3 big bins of fabric that needs to be put somewhere so that it is usable. none of it is yardage, its all scraps from fat quarter size to strings. I find a peice of thin muslin that i was going to use for foundation material. I look at it, i look at the nice neat pile of strings that i have been ironing and putting in their proper home... i cut a peice off of the foundation fabric and i sew a couple strips on, ohhh how pretty, im loving it.... well i then DIG in the nice neat box of strips... undoing the work ive done, and i sew some more strips on... now i have a pile of wrinkled messy strips (at least they are still in their proper bin) and string thingy started when i know i dont have enough strings and i know i have 11 other quilts to finish before christmas.... but... i did find out that i do love the way it looks. Im going to keep it until after the 11 others are done and finish a stringy kaliedescope quilt.

I went to goodwill again yesterday looking for more red shirts. I bought 10 shirts for 10 bucks, only 3 of them red. I need about 4 more red plaid shirts!  5 of the shirts i bought were pastel stripes. YEP... i am up to 8, i figure i want about 15 before i can do a striped shabby quilt for myself. I of course have a different design in my head so im sure in the next week or so, i will be cutting into them and making a block or two of the plan... even though it will be months before i can make this for myself.  (ok.. i also went to the quilt store and to walmarts and made purchases at both of them too. I spent 30 bucks on fabric yesterday!!)

Alot of the scraps, im just cutting into squares. 3 1/2, 2 1/2 and 1 1/2. Of course all these pretty little squares call me... i found a bunch of white 2 1/2 squares that i had cut for another project im no longer making... so what do i do... i sit down and start sewing 9 patches, for an irish chain quilt... again... NOT one of the 11 i need to finish by christmas but oh its so pretty and i like making 9 patches! I figure i will make one everytime i find enough white squares for a patch. I have alot of white scraps in my bins that need to be cut into something, might as well be 2 1/2 in squares.

So... i am still not on the plan... i am trying to organize the mess and im creating more projects instead... lol. The heat looks like it will be around for a week or so more... i cant wait till its over!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

its to hot!!! and another grandbaby!

I haven't done ANY of my goals for this week because it is still WAY too hot!! We have been hitting over 100 the entire month of august and i am WAY over this heat wave drought thing! It really is too hot to be wrestling the quilt and all of my goals this week seem to have involved wrestling quilts.... so i have been working on... surprise surprise... three different quilts that weren't on the list to finish!

One of them is just a leader/ender project. I am going to make an ocean waves with 2 1/2 in squares made into half square triangles... yeah... i know... this one will take forever!! But i have about 40 of the oh... 888 or so squares i need.

One is the red and blue that i showed last week, ive been making some progress, but i need more red fabric! All of a sudden i cant find red plaid shirts anywhere I spent another 15 or so on yard sales again (more vintage sheets for 50 cents and a bunch of shirts, but only one of them was red! OHHH but i got some cute fabric in some of these shirts... just wait!!!)

The other which i am loving is a hst in a diamond pattern, it is reds, blues, greens and yellows with white.

As far as pictures, i am searching for the battery charger for my camera and CAN NOT find it anywhere! I cant take a picture till i do so i am going to look tomorrow.

the grandbaby.... we found out this week that Buck and Sharon are pregnant again. They are the couple that had waylon a little over a year ago. That will make #12!! We are still waiting the arrival of Ally, #11 which should happen in the next week or so. Caty is getting SO big, i swear she is going to have a 10 lb baby! She is no longer working at zippys... so we have about 8 more weeks without her and then i hope she decides to come back. I really miss working with her!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Goal Progress week 1

7 finishes in 8 weeks... im on my way, end of week 1.

By today i wanted to have finished:

1. Cut, press and sew Waylons Binding for finish #1  DONE!
I made this binding smaller than my previous quilts and i really like the smaller binding on the baby quilt!

Plaid Puzzle Quilt

2. Cut and sew wesleys borders and prepare backing
This one was tricky, i had to make the green border based on the amount of fabric i had, not the size of the border i wanted, lol. But... it worked and it matches his brothers baby quilt.

Plaid Puzzle Quilt

3. cut and sew bridgettes borders. DONE! 
This has been ready for borders for a while, but i was having a problem with it because obviously my 1/4 in seams were not right! I have gotten better with the 1/4 in but i had to do something with this one... i decided to just finish it, perfect or not!

Postage Stamp Quilt

4. Start Quilting Sharons
I have started, im not half way through like i had wanted. I had pinned it at the store and i kept forgetting to bring it home! OK... so i have procrastinated some on it, here is the real problem with this one, we are going thru a heat wave so mornings are still in the 90's (normally they are in the 70's and 80's here) and my sewing room doesn't have AC... usually i go in there early before it heats up, but it isn't cooling down and pushing that big ole quilt around without AC... thats a sweaty workout! so i have procrastinated some, this heat had better let up!!!

5. Figure out what i need to finish Caty
Total suprise on this one, ive actually made TOO MANY little 9 patch blocks! woo hoo... im still contemplating the borders. I think i want simple, not to detract from the wonderful little 9 patches!

soooo... what was i doing while procrastinating on the quilting.... i worked on another quilt (other than the 7 i want to finish!!) I had an ahh haa momment and had to see it and make sure its what i wanted! so far this is my favorite layout for the red and blue quilt.

Red and Blue Diamond Quilt

  lol... and another that will be for adrianna....

i did work ahead and cut the white squares for trevor and landon!!! I will update more next week, hopefully this heat wave will end!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

$16.00 worth of goodies

I went to the "AS IS" part of Goodwill in lufkin yesterday. It really is a mess that you sort through but their sheets are 1.00 a peice. I bought 9 of them. I LOVE the blue floral! The white sheets i will use for background fabric, there have been several quilts i wanted to make but didn't have enough solid white... i have TONS now.

On Saturday i hit a yardsale. I spent 7.00 at it and got a ton of goodness! I love the striped sheets (they will become a back to a quilt), there is a pretty vintage and a five more shirts. I am getting quite a few striped shirts again for another quilt like sharons.. i want one for myself even if i just make a beach blanket out of it.

Here are the sheets....

Vintage Sheets

Ive been working on my goals for the week... i will be posting my progress tomorrow. I think i will meet all of them! woo hoo!

Saturday, August 6, 2011

it all starts with a plan

so... 23 quilts and throws by christmas... that is the plan. I have finished 6 so far. I have the rest in various stages of progress. But i have stalled again on sewing and its getting to the point where i need to start seeing progress or im never going to make it.

So i have a plan for 7 finishes in 8 weeks. one is quilted, one is sandwiched, two are borders away from finished flimsies, one is about 1/2 a flimsie, 2 are mostly cut out. Ive set weekly goals for the next 8 weeks. If i can stay within a week or two of the plan and stick to the order, i will feel much better about making my overall goal!

By Wednesday August 10th:
Cut, press, and sew Waylons binding on (Finish #1!)
Cut and sew borders for Bridgette
Start Quilting Sharon (would like to have one direction finished)
cut and sew borders for wesley
peice wesleys backing
figure out how many 9 patch i need yet for caty

By Wednesday August 17
Buy batting and sandwich wesley
finish quilting sharon
cut, press and sew sharons binding (finish #2)
make remaining 9 patches for Caty

By Wednesday August 24th
Quilt Wesley
Cut, press and sew binding on wesley (finish #3!!!)
buy batting and sandwich bridgette
quilt at least half of bridgette
finish everything but borders on Caty

By Wednesday August 31st
cut and sew borders on Caty
Finish Quilting bridgette
cut, press and sew bindingon bridgette (finish #4!!!!)
cut white 3 1/2 squares for landon and trevor
lay out trevor and begin peicing

By Wednesday Sept 7
buy batting and sandwich caty
start quilting caty
finish piecing trevor

By Wednesday Sept 14
finish quilting caty
cut press and sew caty binding (finish #5!!!!!)
lay out and piece landon

By Wednesday Sept 21
buy batting for landon and trevor
sandwich landon and trevor
quilt trevor

by wednesday sept 27
quilt landon
cut press and sew binding on trevor (finish #6!!!!!!)
cut press and sew binding on landon (finish #7!!!!!!!)

as i complete my goals i'll post pics!

I started this post on a saturday afternoon at work, its now 10 pm... its been a CRAZY day at the pizza joint!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

a new kind of sandwich

On laundry mornings we need to get to town at 8 am, even though we really dont start getting ready for service till 10 ish.

I love having someone else do my laundry! Our dryer quit and we decided time wise, we would rather someone else do it than us... we are just never home, so we still haven't replaced the dryer and twice a week we come to town early and have Mrs. Horn wash our laundry. The way this woman folds sheets, it is a work of art, i will have to take a picture! for that alone, i love it. Unfolding the sheets when im making the bed is the most pampered i have ever felt in my life!

But on those early mornings Ive been using the time to work on my quilts. The other day I made a sandwich of a different kind at zippys!

Striped Quilt