Tuesday, February 28, 2023

Dumping all of February on you

 Sorry I have been absent for the month. It has been a pretty intense month for me. I will start with the completion of Sea Glass and Sand. 

It felt so good to get this finished. I took it around for some glamor shots, but didn't love any of them. Then I had the silly idea to introduce Sea Glass and Sand to snow. We have been having more than our fair share of it this winter. The introduction was a little shaky, but everyone played nicely. 

The blocks in this quilt finish at 2" square, and the whole quilt is a measly 8 1/2".

I made this quilt as the project I would be teaching at a local guild. Now I needed to write the pattern. During the process I discovered that I don't like pattern writing. :) I had to keep making the blocks over and over again to make sure I was assembling in the correct order, and that I had seams going the best way for ease of assembly--even though I had taken notes as I made the quilt, so I thought I had all the info I needed. I always second guess myself.

And then I had to make more blocks in order to create the story boards of the process for each of the two blocks in the quilt.

At one point I was so tired of stopping to cut more parts to make another attempt at the block, I just grabbed some HSTs that were on the cutting table without worrying about their size. It was the process I was trying to figure out. When I finished it I realized I had just made a basket that would finish at 1 1/2". It made the 2" finished blocks in my quilt seem large (well, at least bigger).

The class for the guild was held today (Feb. 28th). It was a blustery day, and with the recent snowfalls and more snow overnight, out in farm country where I live, the fresh snow was blowing off the fields and over the roads, causing near white-out conditions. I wondered if they would cancel class, but apparently quilters are hardier than that. As I headed out, the winds were whipping again and a couple of times I just had to pray that I was still driving on the road, because I couldn't really see it. 

Out of the 23 signed up for class, I think 18 of them made it there. I was amazed. If I hadn't been teaching the class, I would have opted not to go out in that weather. But we had a great group of ladies there, and I was happy to be able to share my experience and recommendations for small-scale piecing. I forgot about taking photos until after a couple of them had already had to leave, but this gives you an idea of the action.

They meet in a large room in the city building of a community several miles northeast of where I live. Plenty of space and lots of light.   Below is a better look at the display.

Thank you Needles and Friends Quilt Guild for inviting me to share with you. It was a delightful morning (once I got out of the blowing snow). :)

I wanted to share this block with you. For the "block jack" in my guild this month we had the spool block. I love the way the thread on the spool is pieced. I had so much fun making these, I made four of them.

This is a block I may want to make more of someday (when I can start something new again--if that day ever comes).

We have been having a lot of these kinds of days this winter--cold and grey with lots of big, fat flakes falling and piling up.

On the left is my in-laws home where my son and his wife now reside. It is across a small pasture, but I zoomed in a bit to see the flakes better. You can enlarge this (or any photos in the post) for a better look. On the right is the view of the farmyard from my sewing room window. In the midst of all this dreariness, this is what keeps me smiling--a little bit of summer, indoors.

And once the storm passes outside, it is a bright, crisp, and frosty world. Below is the view from the front of the house--looking east.

And next is the view from the "bee garden" next to our home--looking west.

I hope you can find beauty in your surroundings, and create beauty in your sewing space.
Until next time, be creative and be kind.
Janet O.


  1. ooh i love sea and sand....beautiful and so admire the tiny piecing...i recall many new england winters with just the white out conditions you describe...not fun...and lovely vistas and oh those beautiful orchids...a perfect place as they do appear to be thriving! our winter has been gray and bleak even without snow...finally trees are budded and color is beginning to appear...

  2. (Little Penpen) we’re those your mini’s on display at the class? How beautiful and what a treat for the others! I like your seaglass quilt. Your orchids are beautiful. I hope your Spring comes soon.

    1. Yes, those are my minis. Thank you. I think people appreciate seeing what can be done. I don't expect spring to come too soon in this mountain valley, but I don't mind winter too much if I don't have to drive through the storms! ;)

  3. Sea glass and sand is the perfect name for those colors! I have a small jar of sea glass and it's perfect. But I can't even imagine the patience it must take to work with such itsy bitsy pieces! Amazing!

  4. I love Sea Glass and Sand. The colors, the size, the quilting, the fussy cut sashing. It's all beautiful. I'm glad so many came to your class. The display of your quilts is inspiring.

  5. OMG Sea Glass and Sand is beyond adorable! The quilting is awesome too - did you do it yourself? I would love to re-create it myself. You mentioned that you needed to make the blocks over and over to write the pattern. Do you have enough extras to make a larger quilt? I am glad to see your post today, as I was beginning to think that I had accidently unfollowed you somehow.

  6. How I wish you'd been dumping your snow on us, too, Janet (though I know you need it more than we do)! It looks like a winter wonderland. Sadly, we have early spring temperatures these days. I never give up hope for more snow until May.
    Sea Glass and Sand is beautiful--and amazing. Even more amazing is the tinier version of the basket block. Your story boards look really helpful. I usually learn by reading better than by photos but sometimes, in quilting, you just need the photo. And it seems like you had a great group at your class. Hardy quilters, those. If they didn't appreciate all your pre-class time and effort, they certainly will if they read your blog! Are the quilts on the wall all yours? What a great way to display little quilts.

  7. Sea glass and sand is a beautiful quilt. Oh my gosh, those blocks are so tiny. The snow looks beautiful.

  8. How I love Sea Glass and Sand, would love to see that as a full-size quilt also - you can tell I need quilts to keep warm! Your orchids never fail to amaze, one of our two orchids is blooming now, the other shows no signs of a repeat, nor did it last year. How nice to have some of your family residing nearby.

  9. Glad you got to class safe and back. The minis look great on the wall swagged like that. Lots of pretty stitches in them too. I love your feather Quilting on Sea Glass.

  10. Sea Glass and Sand is lovely! Great feather quilting! We in northern New England have been getting lots of snow, too. I like it, but am ready for spring. Indoor flowers do help 🙂.

  11. What a sweet class sample you have made. Writing patterns is not for the faint of heart. I too, take notes and remake blocks several times. A sign of a good pattern (to me) is when as many seams nest together for a flatter finish. You have such amazing views, stay safe and warm.

  12. I just had to pray I was still on the road because I couldn’t really see it -🤣! Quilters are a hardy stock!

  13. What a marvelous view ! I love it !
    Well done for your "Story board" ... it's perfect
    I love colours of your last quilt... (I'm a fan ;-) )
    from belgium

  14. Your doll quilt is beautiful ! With a stunning quilting ! The view from your home is always fabulous, in winter and summer !

  15. Sea Glass and Sand meeting snow! I love it. I'm glad your class went so well and wasn't canceled because of the weather. Your display of all ( or many) your minis is incredible. Great job!!

  16. I finally signed up to follow your blog! So wonderful to see you are still making your mini's......but I'm stuck at looking at the snow scenes.......so beautiful! Quilty hugs from New Zealand xx

  17. Your Sea Glass and Sand is beautiful! I love the colors! Nice job at the guild ... how fun for you! I'm envious of your snowy weather! We've had some temps in the 80s, some tornado weather, and it looks like we're going back to cold in another week or so. Sounds like March in Alabama!! Hugs!!! :)

  18. Beautiful Seaglass and Sand, such tiny perfection. The tiny Baskets for class are precious--as I said in a previous post, I'd make a real effort to take your classes, if we didn't live as far away as we possibly can. The orchids are beautiful, as aren your snowy vistas.


  19. Your mini is beautiful Janet, I am glad the class was well attended. Your snowy views are stunning.

  20. YOur little quilt turned out amazing! I'm sure the students found your directions thorough. We had to drive through a bit of that blowing snow lately as well. Scary!

  21. Oh, such tiny piecing, and the snow, it's beautiful, but can't imagine having to live there and drive in it? Glad you had some dedicated quilters for your class, think i might have not gone too.

  22. where to begin with such a wonderful post? From the teeny tiny basket blocks to the giant snowflakes - wow!! I love your display would love to admire your incredible work up close. How lucky for the group who made it there despite the weather.
    You have lovely views of your properties and oh my - those orchids. I just can't seem to make mine last. I've even done some research but they alway give up - or maybe I do.

  23. Great post, Janet! Love your Sea Glass and Sand mini. I had collected a mason-jar full of sea glass over the years but had to leave it behind when we moved. What a lovely display of orchids on your windowsill! Wow, you really live out in the country. Beautiful views all around! I really like those spool blocks. At one point I was thinking of making some using selvages in the middle. Maybe someday . . .

  24. Wow, another stunning mini (I always forget just how small they are until you give us the block measurements and then I gasp!). The colors, the quilting. Vibrant against the snow. Your array of minis for your group - just, wow. I'm sure those that braved the weather were so glad they did. Your snow is so beautiful, with the blue sky.


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