Friday, March 10, 2017

Forging Ahead

I did get a "little" sidetracked as I was forging (sounds like I have clandestine operations going on in my basement, or something). Realizing I only had 3 mini quilts to display with a St. Patrick's Day color scheme, I had to do something to put in my standing clip.
So this happened. Maybe I'll call it "Patrick's Pinwheels".
Shouldn't take long to quilt. It will finish about 7" x 10". 
The pinwheels were made from a couple of strips of the fabric Randy had wrapped around a pincushion she sent me last year. You may  recall the little Valentine quilt I whipped up from the two strips on the right in this photo.
You can see the strips I used in the quilt above--and this took every last bit of them. I just added the black from Moda's "Essential Dots" line. 
The strip to the far left was partially used in my Quilters Madder, so now all of the strips have been put into little quilts.

Okay, here is where I start forging ahead. I decided that rather than spending months agonizing over finding just the right setting, and/or sashing for these 64-patch blocks made from Mom's watercolor quilt leftovers, I needed to just use Mom's scraps to finish this off. This quilt is all about sentimental value, not design perfection. 
I tried greens for the sashing, but the green in the blocks just does not stand out enough to make the green sashing feel unifying. There were a few strips of light purple leftovers from Mom's watercolor quilt, but not enough to sash the blocks. So I dug deeper and came across some strips of purple in a bag of scraps from the last quilt Mom made. I had to give them a try. They were a variety of shades, and when combined with the first purple strips I found, there were barely enough. I decided to put the lightest shades around the darkest blocks, and vice versa.

The setting triangles stumped me. Mom's scraps were not big enough, and there was nothing in my stash that clicked. I'm really trying to meld warm yellows and cool purples and pinks in the quilt, and that isn't easy. That is where my buddy Kris, from Lavender Quilts blog, saved the day. She had this warm yellow batik with a soft purple print. I took a sample home and it did the job for me, pulling the yellows from the inner blocks, through all of the purples, to the edge of the quilt. So this is my final answer. Probably no one would put this all together by choice, but I look at this as a "make do" quilt--making do with Mom's leftovers, and I am okay with the purchase of the setting triangle fabric.

The really big forge ahead was that I finally pin basted "the beast"!
And last night I actually began the quilting!
If you have ever made a t-shirt quilt before, you know they are heavy. Quilting a king sized one on a sit down machine really gives the shoulders a workout. After only 1 1/2 blocks quilted, my left shoulder is talking to me. I was supposed to have it scoped the end of December, but it was scheduled for the very day my Dad passed, so I canceled. My shoulder was actually feeling pretty good by that time, too, after having been a problem for over a year. So I didn't reschedule. But after shoveling a few driveways following one of our many snowstorms, it is troubling me again. 
I'll have to take baby steps quilting this, or I might not be in shape to sew when Bonnie Hunter comes to Utah this July to teach classes. Two of the classes are only 30 minutes from home, so I will be there to meet the first quilt blogger I started following, over 6 years ago.

Until next time, 
Janet O.


  1. oooh shoulder problems....take care and baby that thing....glad to hear you will get in on bonnie's classes! and your mom's quilt is sooo pretty too...

  2. Were you up in the middle of the night posting or did you schedule ahead?j I was surprised to see you had posted two hours earlier than my very early rising this morning.
    I have had that green fabric you used in the pinwheels. Always liked it.
    I think you did very well with your fabric selection for setting your mother's blocks.

  3. Wow - your Best quilt looks great. Yes, go slow and be careful of the shoulder. Do you use a slider sheet on your machine? I find I don't press down and it glides forward with it. I also wore my Yoga gloves for the first time yesterday and they are fabulous! I put a photo on IG today.
    That batik is the perfect setting triangle for your little quilt! It really pulls everything together with that purple sashing.
    cute little pinwheel - you'll have that done in a snap.
    Pretty new header! I love cattails

  4. More beautiful finishes and almosts. Love the make do quilt, something that I would definitely do and have done. I was very surprised to see you machine quilt with a other than a domestic sewing machine. Wow! Go girl.

  5. I love Patrick's Pinwheels :)!
    And so proud of you for starting the quilting on the beast. I'm sorry it's bothering your shoulder though :(
    What size is the watercolor quilt going to be? I know it's bigger than it looks on here...just because I've seen it on the design wall. I'm sure some of your readers might mistake it for a wall hanging or even table topper considering your usual mininess :) I think the batik is perfect for the setting triangles.

  6. How exciting you get to mingle with Bonnie! Your tiny quilt is adorable. It's so great that you used Randy's fabric as well as your mother's to make some quilts that will be meaningful to you. My son has been wanting a t-shirt quilt for years--I'm not brave enough to tackle one yet. It sounds like I should get to it before I'm too feeble---lol!

  7. I'm so glad to see progress happening on your Quilting. YEA for Quilting buddies to the rescue! The light setting Triangles spotlight the sashing around the blocks. Purple and Yellow go together for me ever since they were our School Colors in Burbank. Sorry about the shoulder troubles. Cute Pinwheel quilt for St Patty's.

  8. Love the little St. Paddy's quilt. It's fun, it's festive, and it's got a story - what more could you ask? You are so clever to put those floral blocks together with the shades of purple! I'm surprised how often I can't find the right fabric I need and when I audition a solid it's the perfect touch. The batik is so soft and brings everything together. So Nice!

  9. You'll have so much fun with Bonnie! What classes are you taking? Don't forget to bring show-n-tell - I wanna see your minis on her blog!!!! There is a bunch of us from hexie club waiting to see if we can get into a Bonnie class this fall. Fingers crossed.

    Your St. Paddy's quilt is just adorable. If I had more mini quilts I would look into the stand up clip as it's the cutest. I do have some tiny hexie papers waiting to be used....

    My laptop screen didn't scream yellow with the watercolor leftover quilt. It looked more neutral from here and I quite liked the whole ensemble. Congrats on a "large" finish.

  10. Best of luck with the shoulder, while you are quilting the t shirt quilt. Love your new mini and impressed that you pulled together all your mothers leftovers, what a great finish. So wish I could go to a Bonnie Hunter class, so enjoy it on my behalf too please!

  11. oh your poor shoulder--is it suffering from overuse. That is a beast of a quilt. The purple settings and sashings look beautiful

  12. Your little St. Patrick's Day quilt looks so dapper hanging beside all his little brother and sister quilts! I think your arrangement and choices for your 64 patch quilt are just right. I really like the different shades of purples for the sashing. Good luck with the Beast, don't over do it! You are going to love Bonnie! You will enjoy her classes. Her's was the first blog I started reading too.

  13. Any quilt that has green and St. Patrick in the same sentence wins my vote.

  14. I think you did a great job combining your mom's scraps and getting creative with what you had to work with. The batik for the setting triangles was a great choice. Wow! You have wrestled the beast, but don't let it wrestle you. Take your time

  15. But look at the beast... almost finished!! I hope your shoulders hold up. I like Patrick's pinwheels and your mom's scrap quilt is going to be beautiful!!

  16. I love that little green quilt. I'm still "advertising" let it snow around my house! Need to make the switch to spring.
    The tshirt quilt looks great, but not worth hurting yourself over!!
    You found a great way to finish your mum's quilt. I love it!

  17. Darling minis as always! You were very clever in sorting out a way to use your Mom's scraps but get to a finished top faster. Love your creativity with your scraps. Wow, that is a great huge quilt. Hopefully you can avoid wearing out your shoulder completely by taking frequent breaks.

  18. Oh, Janet, your Mom's quilt is more than fabulous!! And you are right, that pale yellow with the lavender (hey, hey, lavender . . .) in it is PERFECT!! Don't ya just love private hordes?? :-0 Patrick's Pinwheels is just sweet!! And the Beast is coming along!! Don't work on it too fast and kill your shoulders!! Not worth it!! Can't wait to see how you decide to quilt your Mom's quilt!! xoxoxo Thanks for the shout out!!

  19. Very impressive, Janet. I love the St. Patrick's Day mini; and your use of you mom's leftovers is truly amazing!
    I thought you'd gotten your shoulder taken care of but didn't realize your appointment coincided with your dad's death... definitely should be taken care of, or stop shoveling!! ;-)
    You need your strength for the classes with Bonnie!!

  20. Purple. My vote is always purple. Your St. Patrick's mini is darling -- you really are quite incredibly talented. I've never done a tee-shirt quilt, but there are two that family members have given me tee-shirts for. I know who to go to when I have questions! Hugs! :)

  21. Your Mom's leftovers and your talent have combined into a stunning, regal, masterpiece of love; well done, Janet! Please do take good care of that shoulder, your Tshirt "beast" is looking fabulous but don't over-do, my friend, it can wait. Your shoulder and your health are #1. You will love Bonnie, I can promise you that!

  22. I'm so far behind in blog reading, but am trying to get caught up. The St. Patrick's day mini is adorable and your layout for your Mom's fabrics will really work perfectly. I can't imagine quilting a king size T-fhirt quilt, but definitely know how heavy T-shirt quilts are, having just made one. It was a lot smaller, but big enough, I think. Yours looks great! And I'm sure it will be perfect once done. You better take it slow, though, to take it easy on your shoulder - maybe just one block at a time.

  23. More beautiful finishes and almosts. Love the make do quilt.
    What fun to meet Bonnie Hunter...wish she would come down under.

  24. The finish of your Mom's scraps turned out great. Purple/yellow very nice. I do believe Bonnie Hunter was the first blog I followed too! Happy St. Patrick's Day, may luck be with you always. Sandi

  25. Great work on your Mum's quilt - I really like your decisions - I'm sure she'll be really happy with it too.


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