Monday, November 11, 2019

Quilted Diamonds

Hello.  I am running a little behind.  I want to do at least one post a week and life became busy or I became lazy.  Not truly sure which.  I have been caught by a shiny object though 😉.

There is a woman in Canada who does amazing piecing and quilting, Linda Franz.  She has written two books; Quilted Diamonds and Quilted Diamonds 2.  She made the pattern for 281 4 X 7 inch Diamond blocks.  I find them fascinating.  Like many other quilters, I have decided to begin her blocks.  Using fabric bits that I have will make this my first scrappy quilt. Here are my first four blocks,(277 to go).  (I have no affiliation with her or her books.  I find her work amazing.)

The blocks are made by printing the pattern on freezer paper, cutting out the pieces, ironing the pattern to the material (freezer paper sticks to the material) and then marking the piece on material.  Where I have marked is my stitching line.  They are then hand sewn together with a running stitch, slow stitching.  

I am still working on my Flower Garden and will show you a picture this week.  Also have been looking at tatting patterns to see if something catches my eye, another shiny object.

Have a nice day with your threads.

Friday, October 25, 2019

Gift from Mother Nature

The Katsura tree in our front yard has lost all its leaves.  I was very surprised to see this.

I think that it is a paper wasp nest.  When the snow comes, I will cut the branch it is attached to and put it in the woods.  I don't want to take a chance now that there might still be active inhabitants.  We have had them start their nests on the house, under the roof edge.  Those we have knocked down with a spray of water from the garden hose.  This is at least 12 inches long.  Never knew it was there and I have worked in the garden under this all summer.  I guess I should look up more often :).

I am almost half way done with the rows on my Grandmother's Flower Garden.   One more row of white and colored flowers and then I begin the second side.  When that is done, I will then sew the two sides together.  I am enjoying the slow stitching with this.  I machine sew a hexie block between the flowers and then hand sew, with a running stitch, the rows together.  If you look at the bottom right, you can see where I still have two flowers to attach to the row.

 Have a wonderful day with your threads, however they are being used.

Monday, October 21, 2019


This weekend was the Massachusetts Quilt Shop Hop.  Seven shops participated; three in Berkshire County, one in Hampshire County and three in Hampden County.  Kathy and I visited all seven shops.  One day traveling in Berkshire County and one day traveling to the other four shops.  When you visited each shop, if you had a Shop Hop Passport, you received a gift bag.  

From one of my favorite shops I received the green thimble that you see.  I wasn't sure if it would be any fun to use as it is made out of silicone, I think.  I used it last night while piecing my garden quilt and I really do like it.  The finger that wears my thimble while sewing wears a size small and this fits nicely.  The end of the needle doesn't come through the thimble as I expected it to.  Getting this new thimble encouraged me to find my others.

These are the thimbles that I use the most.  Very easy to find as they are in my sewing kit by my chair.  The metal one on the left is my piecing, quilting thimble.  I have used it for years.  Being metal, even though it is a small, it will come off my finger at times but always easy to put back on.  The pink one I bought about two months ago.  It is a medium and at times a bit loose.  The peach one I bought on the shop hop.  It is a small and stays on my finger.  It and the green one are my two new favorite thimbles.

These are my old thimbles that I first used for quilting.  One was my Mom's and one is mine.  The black thimble I would wear on the finger under the quilt to protect it from the needle. 


Long ago, late 1970s, Mom and I went to the Elsa Williams School of Needlework.  These are all from that class.  We received the white plastic one with our project kit.  When we finished the classes we received the silver ones.  I guess I need to clean them up.  It has been a long time since I have used these.  They are more a medium size, great for my Mom.  The class was Black work, Count work and Stump work embroidery.

These are some of the oldest.  An inexpensive plastic one from my Mom, a ceramic one that I thought was pretty and is nice to use, another ceramic one from a trip to California.

The thimbles were easy to find as I put them all in the same spot when we redid the Mom Cave floor.  I just had to look for what I put them in as I still cannot remember where everything is, but, still clean and organized ;) 

Saturday, October 12, 2019

Little Flowers

Our youngest read my blog to see Ziva in her debut photo (as seen in last entry).  I was then informed that Gibbs was VERY upset that his picture was not posted.  Here, as they sleep on their 'bunk bed',  you can see our two new Fur Children Ziva on the top of the picture and Gibbs on the bottom of the picture.  They are very close cats. 

I am still working on my Flower Garden and almost 1/4 of the way done.  I have still not made the grapes to applique on A Bountiful Life.  I am happy with working with my hexies.  I did make a small project this week.  Smaller hexies which I then turned into coasters/mug rugs.  This back side photo shows the one inch hexies made into a flower compared to the hexie flowers in my garden quilt.

Here are the two sides of the coasters.  You can see that the one on the right is not yet finished.  The open area is where I turned it inside out.  I love that wooden floor material.  It is left over from my S'mittens runner.

On our second trip to Boston last week I didn't work on the quilt.  Instead I knitted two dish cloths.  One on the way down and one on the way back. 

Thank you for stopping by. 

Saturday, October 5, 2019

1/6 of the way

Good afternoon.  A very busy week we have had, driven to Boston twice and Bennington, VT once.  I don't have much hand work done and I am later than I wanted to be in posting. 

There has been no applique work done at all.  I have to get my grapes prepared and then sew them onto my Bountiful block. 

I have been working on Grandmother's Flower Garden.  I was able to do some hand work while we were on the MA Pike and while waiting in offices.  It was easier in the office, the Pike is not always that smooth and it would make my hand jump and then I would displace the needle.  Here are the first four rows, two of the flowers and two of the background.  Ten flowers per row and 12 rows of flowers.   I am 1/6 of the way done with putting the rows together.

Here they are folded in half as each row has a repeat after five flowers.

Closer in all their wrinkled glory.  

I have not been tatting much this year.  Nothing has caught my eye.  This doiley was done in 2018 and has been on the back of my chair.  I am using it as an Antimacassar (I love that word).  

Our Ted walked over the Rainbow Bridge in January of this year.  In February my husband found Gibbs and Ziva at the Berkshire Humane Society.  They moved in and we are glad that they are here.  Ziva makes good very use of tatted doileys, Antimacassars.  She says that they complement her "Kitty Look".  She will be above my head while I am in the chair piecing the rows of the quilt.  Every once in awhile she will touch me with her paw.  Not sure if it is because I am sewing well or I should fix something ;).

Have a great week.

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Flower Garden

There have been no stitches added to my third block for my A Bountiful Life quilt this week.  I do work on more than one project at a time.  I have two, three, ah four, maybe five (I won't admit to more than that) active projects going right now.

I spent this week working on my Grandmother's Flower Garden quilt.  This one is all hexies.  I am not doing English Paper Piecing to make this.  I am using Inklingo; I print the hexie shape on the back of the material, cut on the line and then sew them together.  I am doing these Flowers in a hybrid style.  I am sewing the six petals together by machine and then sew in the flower center by hand.  It is wonderful slow stitching.  I have120 flowers made; 20 colors with six flowers of each color.  Here they are up on my wall in their proper order. 

Then I made 99 flowers that are the back ground flower.  Here they are on my ironing board in bunches of ten (easier for me to keep tract of how many).

Then I machine sew a white hexie in between the color flowers and the background flowers.  Here I have a row of flowers and a row of background side by side.

Then comes the slow stitching where the two rows are stitched together.  This is great for riding in the car, watching TV(football) or just being quiet.

When I get the rows all together for the center of my quilt, I will see how much white fabric I have left.  The borders will either be white or maybe a pale green or yellow of a 1930s tiny print.  Shall have to wait and see.  

I am half way done with the Christmas Angels and Snowflakes for Church.  I make them while I am sewing.  I just keep getting up to keep Ellie (my machine) moving on to the next step in making. 

Have a wonderful day.  I cannot believe that September is almost over.  Our trees have begun to turn and we have had a frost that has finished off my tomatoes and basil.  Now I am getting the gardens ready for winter. 

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

The Cave

This summer in August we had our floors redone.  26 years of kid activity, cats and living on a dirt road made them more than ready to be redone.  We had to empty the first floor and that included the Mom Cave.  I went through everything (in every room) to see what was going to be kept.  Here is a picture of the Cave totally disorganized.  The loom is already apart and there are boxes from other rooms on the first floor in there.

Here are the floors of the Cave after they had been redone and the walls were painted for the first time in 26 years.  It is, for me, like WOW.

The Cave might not look organized in this picture, but believe me, it is.  Everything has a home, is labeled, and there is a lot less stuff in there.  The loom is still in parts on the blanket.  I will wait for Sweet Thing #3 to come home in November to put it together.  It will be hers in the far distant future and she needs to put it together at least once.  (Maybe she will remember how in 20 or more years from now.)  There is also my little loom on the blanket. 

All three of my machines are together for a group photo.  Two live in this corner, Big Red and the Grand Dame.  Elle came over to sit on my cutting table as she is working with her embroidery unit to make Angels and Snowflakes for Christmas. I work on sewing quilt parts as she does the embroidery.  My pictures need to get back up on the walls.

I have begun my third block of A Bountiful Life.  This block is named Fruit Bounty.  These are grape leaves and I will be doing the grapes next.  Then comes pears, apples, strawberries and cherries.

My tatting is missing at this time.  There is just not anything that has caught my eye or fingers to make.

Have a great day.