Feline Friday is hosted every friday and HELP for Hexie-aholics is hosted on the 17th of each month. We hope you'll join us!

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Hello 2015!!

If you've been around my blog longer than 5 minutes you'll know that I'm not great on follow through. I enjoy the journey too much to worry about finishing each and every project. My three year old addiction to hexies is making that journey even more exciting but deeper in UFOs.

And yet, I have decided that this year I will join in two different BOM projects. One of them I'll tweak for my own purposes (imagine that??!!) and the other will need no tweaking, just a lot of hard work to keep up.

I finally decided to join the Rainbow Scrappy Challenge at Super Scrappy. Each month she posts a color and followers make blocks of their choice in that color. I think I'll blame this on Bonnie Hunter. Why not? She won't see this, right? Bonnie was working on her Box Kite quilt and I liked the block. What isn't there to like about 3 squares and 6 HSTs? It was about the same time I had read someone's post about the scrappy challenge and I decided to give the block a try "just in case" I liked it enough to work on all year.

Surprise! I liked it! I've decided to use the monthly color suggestion to cut blocks for my (now) three leader ender projects. I'll be able to prep some leader enders to work on while trying to get somewhere on my UFO pile. I see the January color was posted today and it's "blue." I'll get right on that when I get home!

I have 72 basket blocks completed. These will be set on point and I have yet to pick a setting fabric.


I also have 70 of these disappearing 4 patch puss in the corner blocks made. I'm gonna need bigger storage tho as tin#1 is full. These will also set on point with alternating squares of a yet to be picked fabric but there is a long way to go...

The other BOM project is Katja's Millefiore Quilt-Along based on her book "The New Hexagon."

My rosette #1 paper pack arrived yesterday and I picked up this fabric a few weeks ago as my focus for this rosette. Katja posted the first set of directions today so I'll be sure to get on this when I get home too. I best cuz #1 is a doozy with 37 blocks making up the rosette and it will take a while to decide how I want to fussy cut my fabrics.

Other than making class samples, Ryan's quilt and Bonnie's 2015 mystery quilt I really don't have any quilt plans for 2015 other than working on UFOs. Hexies will be a different story. I have a long UFO list to work on and bucket list that I was trying to hold off on but the stars have recently aligned on several so it looks like I'll be starting some more hexie UFOs...I'll share pictures some day...

That's it for now...Happy New Year and I'll see all y'all next year!

PS - Feline Friday, HeLP and Bibliophile Files will all be making comebacks in 2015. Woo Hoo!

Monday, December 29, 2014

Mystery Monday Link Up!

Thankfully last Friday's clue #5 was a super simple one - other than 45 minutes of hexies it was a go-go-go weekend. I was lucky to finish what I did and that was because I stopped working on town taxes long enough for the first hour of Quilt Cam. It was nice to take that break amongst the chaos.

Yipper - my little Quality Control Officer was checking my work and blocking my light =^..^=

Did you ever think your food is laughing at you??
Well, today, I finally caught it on "film". LOL

Me thinks he looks a little worried now that he's on "film" !

Have a great week!!

Friday, December 26, 2014

Feline Friday - Helpin'

Despite this whole Get. It. Off. Me. Now. moment, I decided to help Momma with her quilt anyway.

Does your Momma leave Christymas presents on the table too? Ugh.

I mean, I couldn't see how HE was going to be helpful and my favorite sissy is more in to afghans so that just left me!

Yipper - I put on my serious face for a serious job.
I think at this time we were listening to a Stephanie Plum book and I was really trying hard not to laugh!

I held down the quilt any time Momma wanted to take a break. You know how these quilts can get away from us...

I also investigated the interior of the quilt...I couldn't find a single monster! Ty-Guy should appreciate that...

Mr Tough Guy. 

Yesterday, Momma gave the quilt to Favorite Nephew Tyler. Other than a handwriting disaster on the label I am pretty sure the kiddo likes it. He gave Momma a big hug before he even opened the quilt to see the top.

And now she needs to start a quilt for Favorite Nephew Ryan who ever so quietly asked Momma if she had made him one too... Makes a heart break, it does.

See all y'all next year!!!!

Monday, December 22, 2014

Grand Illusion progress update

Whoo Hoo! In between cookies and gift making this weekend I finally made some progress on my Grand Illusion mystery quilt.

I finally finished Step #1!! OK, so I still have to press open and pinwheel the seams but they are cut and sewn.

And it's not like I've been slacking on the other steps:

I've been having trouble getting the diamond pdf/template to print the correct size so the strips for step #2 are ready but I am at a standstill. Me thinks I'll have to improvise :)

I have also been cutting strips for Step #3.

And don't forget I already have those 80 pink/turquoise HST done for step #4. LOL!

I'm hoping I'll get some free time Wednesday or Christmas Day for some "fun" sewing so I can make some progress. I'll have to start working on taxes the day after Christmas so probably won't get much sewing time over the weekend.

And just because I though this was hilarious...this fabric was the perfect color for my mystery quilt! In small pieces you can barely tell they are onions.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Feline Friday


He's. touching. my. TREEEEEEE!!

And, he's not being nice to my birdie ornaments. He's gonna break another one! 

Ohhhh that's better ... got my sleepy spot back so I can look at the sparkly lights.

Don't tell the Elf I tattled tho...

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

HeLP for Hexie-aholics!!!!

Hello, my fellow Hexiologists!!! Today is our monthly installment of Hexie Linky Party (HeLP) for Hexie-aholics!!!

Why the 17th you may ask....'cuz 1/17/71 is my birthday and 17 is my favorite number. Purely random as far as all y'all are concerned :)

If you've been reading my blog for a while, you may remember that I am the Head Troublemaker for our local hexie club, recently dubbed "For the Love of Hexies..." This past summer we each bought a half yard of this red/white/black fabric and were to add any other RWB fabrics we wanted in addition to fussy cutting this fabric. We would then bring our rosettes back to our December meeting to exchange. Luckily, I won the rosette I wanted most due to the pieced hexies.

Our next step in the challenge is for each of us to make our rosette in to something and bring it back to our March meeting for show-n-tell. These finished projects will be part of our display at the Arts Council in September.

I'm still deciding what to do with my rosette. I don't need another pillow and don't know that I have time to really add enough to become a table runner. I was thinking doll/cat quilt size maybe. Any suggestions?

Ok -  here's my favorite part of HeLP - what are you working on??!! Feel free to link to any project old, new or still in the dream stage; just be sure to link to an actual post and not your blog in general.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

One for Three

Sadly the bazaar yesterday wasn't very profitable. I made enough to cover expenses but not enough to also cover the cute things I bought. Oh well.

My main Christmas tree will someday be all bird ornaments (right now I fill in with family ornaments, santas and cats) so I had to buy the crocheted turkey!

Sadly, there won't be time for Cookie Day this year but I am trying to get some made here and there...
I also bought this darling sign for my kitchen...it's painted on an old chunk of wood.

After the show I ran over to the LQS in East Aurora, planning to pick up some 505 spray baste and FQs for my mystery quilt. Can you believe the 505 was $3 more than locally and they didn't have a single fabric that matched my mystery fabrics??!! I walked out with 5 zippers to make more inventory.

On the other hand, I did have lots of time to sit and work on hexies!

I finally finished this POTC block. I don't have any more bits fussy cut yet so this will probably get set aside for a while so I can finish some more pressing projects.

I made some progress on this 1/8th section of my tree skirt. I finished basting all 288 diamonds a week or so ago. Yesterday I stitched together the 2nd row down from the top and basted the bottom 3 or 4 rows together. As soon as I finish this post I'll stitch more together before my lunch ends. I do think there is a real possibility this will be finished before Christmas 2015.

She may be tiny, but that girl can cast shadows =^..^=

And when I had finished everything else I brought with me yesterday, I returned to an old faithful - Value Proposition block #11. Yipper still behind and probably will be for a while but I am still really enjoying this project and I think I can get this done before Christmas 2015 too (ok, maybe just the top will be together and it won't be quilted...)

Monday, December 08, 2014

Design Wall Monday - 12/8/14

Friday night was Hexie Club night and I worked both Saturday and Sunday at the LQS so it felt like all I did was cut fabric this weekend but...when I went to take pictures this morning I discovered I accomplished more than I thought. Yay me!!!

What I did not photograph was getting Tyler's quilt sandwiched. I had bought 108" wide backing fabric and I had recently bought yards and yards of batting on sale. I spray baste using the tables at the LQS and the actual spraying part is a breeze but making sure all three layers were cut down to size, perfectly flat and lined up took quite a while since I was working by myself.

We offer a "Sandwich Club" at the LQS to assist each other with spray basting projects. The small class fee includes sandwiches for lunch :-) Now if I could just convince a few more people to join in it would be more fun for the group...

I cut a ton of red and white strips since I still need another 50 or so Ruby Beauty blocks. I sewed half of them together and pressed them open last night. I probably won't have much time to subcut or sew the 4-patches this week since I (hopefully) have my final bazaar tomorrow and I'm having a Christmas Party at my house on Sunday. I suppose I ought to decorate before the party! Luckily the girls understand my studio (right off the living room) is never "clean" but used and loved!

174 HST down, 106 left to go...for Clue #1

I bought three more pinks at the LQS this weekend and then cut out some more turquoise/pink HST units. I should be at 2 or 3 more non-LQSs in the next week so I can get even more variety. In case you are wondering, I don't "do" pink as a norm so I try to force myself once in a while so I can expand the stash and I think these rose colors are a good compromise.

Each clue is in it's own basket so I can track progress. I prefer to finish each step before I move on to another and this will keep it all sorted until I get some more FQs for variety.

Last but not least, I also worked on Clue #2. I have all 200 black triangles cut and I've cut neutral strips for the diamonds. I'll hold off cutting pinks until I get some more in the next week.

Keep your fingers crossed for the bazaar tomorrow. It's been delayed twice due to "snowvember" and there is another storm coming tomorrow, which will either affect the bazaar or the guild Christmas party...or both. I'm ok with some snow but there are plenty who are not...

Friday, December 05, 2014

Feline Friday - 12/5/14

Last week, during Momma's staysewturkeycation, I discovered that her dinosaur of a laptop makes a nice warm bed. Every time I tried it, tho, she shrieked nononononono. Something about goofing up her EQ7 design...

With a big push from Momma, I finally moved over to the middle of the table and sat on a big pile 'o stuff.

Shortly, with a heavy sigh, I rolled to my side, wiggled a bit and settled in.

You have got to be kidding me!? Am I just some toy to entertain you or what?

Just for that I am going to hold the dinosaur hostage!! Hah!!!!!! Love you Momma!

Tuesday, December 02, 2014

The Bibliophile Files

Guess What??!?!?!?!?!????!!!???
I am exactly 201 pages from finishing my reading challenges for the year!!!!

Not bad considering the original challenge I modified was meant for 2 years and it's only been 11 months. I'm fairly certain that with 4 weeks left and the next tax season looming, I'll get several more read before the end of the year and beat last year's record of 75 books.

I had really hoped to be able to hunker down and finish reading the last book, Ill Wind, by the end of my vacation last week. Given that I kept waking at 6 or 630am (w/out an alarm!!) one would have thought it was possible but the draw of my Bernina ended up being stronger than my last book. I still accomplished a lot over vacation - enough to the point that I ran, not walked, to the library for more audiobooks just in case I ran out late at night or something drastic like that...

In case you haven't heard about my personal reading challenges before, please read last months post, read the BF tab above, or check my shelfari.com page.

So here's the second to last list:

Agony of the Leaves (11/9/14)
Six Years (11/15/14)
Echo Burning (11/22/14)
Exit Ghost (11/23/14)
*Everglades (11/24/14)
Every Little Thing About You (11/27/14)
Alex Cross' Trial (11/28/14)
Bury Your Dead (11/30/14)

Your turn...What did you read last month??

Monday, December 01, 2014

Design Wall Monday - 12/1/14

Here is is, the first Monday after Thanksgiving. Sew what you say???Well, it's the first linky party for Bonnie's 2015 mystery quilt: Grand Illusion!!

It may not look like I got a ton done on Clue #1 so far but, with everything over my 5 day vacation, I made progress on a lot of things and finished virtually nothing. No worries - I had a blast!!

I finally made it to the city yesterday and popped into Lowe's for some paint chips. Mind you, I've already picked fabrics to start with but I wanted to compare to Bonnie's colors. I'm using just the one yellow but I only grabbed my fav 2 FQs of the other three colors for comparison. I'm stoked about the colors. It will be bright and just up my alley!!

Probably hard to tell by the aerial view but all 100 of my yellow and black squares are cut. I was happy to find some blacks with yellow and teal in them! I have only cut 100 HST pairs, hence the button, (I count by 10s using old thimbles and change for a large button when I get to 100. Harder to explain than to do it in my sleep.) Anyways...180 more HST pairs to cut. I don't have a lot of rose pinks yet so I might stall cutting them until I get to a different quilt shop.

PS - be sure to pop back in tomorrow for Bibliophile Files!!

Friday, November 28, 2014

Feline Friday - 11/28/14

Shhhhhh.... this might be the good part.

Tomlinson and Ford are about to go save Sally from Izzy.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

T is for Tyler Update

Sew...remember how I was supposed to vend at a bazaar at Fisher Price last Thursday but because of "Snowvember" it got moved to yesterday? Well they moved it again. Ackckckck.

I had switched days off from last Thursday to Monday but I decided to still take Monday off and I had a blast working on Tyler's quilt. I haven't worked on something *I* wanted to do in such a long time that it felt a little weird but it was fun to watch the top come together.

Apparently I had made more blocks than I originally designed in EQ7 so I worked to find a way to use them all. Hah! I settled on a layout that has me making 4 more blocks. No big deal - I'll finish it tomorrow, you know, my next vacation day. Other than today, I don't have to be back to work until Monday!!!

Saturday is Small Business Saturday here in Wyoming County and my LQS is having a 20% off sale - I intend to buy batting so I can sandwich this and the other quilt I hope to finish this week. I might actually get both done for Christmas. Woohoo!

Friday, November 21, 2014

Feline Friday - 11/21/14- gorilla test

Momma says I have to tell you this post is not for the faint of heart! Harumphph.

On Wednesday Momma was making hexies on the couch and thought I was being too quiet in the quilt studio so she came to investigate. This is what she stepped on. Oh the horrors. Poor little catnip toy. How did that happen?

You see, on Tuesday Momma was finishing catnip toys for her bazaars this weekend. She gave me and my sissies some plain catnip on the ugly pink carpet to entertain us long enough for her to get them sewn. Momma is funny, huh?! When she finished, I was sleeping on the inventory box so Momma stashed them in a basket on the top of the really high curio cabinet from Uncle Tommy. Momma keeps her hexie UFOs in the cabinet.

Back to Wednesday, Momma scolded me but knew it was too late for the poor catnip toy. She put the rest of the toys in the inventory box. This is what the toys originally looked like and maybe you can see what I  did to the bag last year.  Momma makes good toys!

Momma went back to her hexies but then I was being quiet again.

See Momma - THIS is how I got the single toy out of the basket to test...just don't forget I left you the other nine toys! I'm such a good boy!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

POTC update

Sorry - the colors are pretty washed out, but this is where I am on the latest POTC block. The next round will also use the same neutral fabric which contrasts nicely with the lighter neutral sashing fabric.

The center of this block is pretty dark or "dense" compared to my other POTC block so I'll need to remember to make more in a similar style to balance out the quilt.

Yesterday's snow storm turned out to be a big fat nothing for me here at work or home (less than an inch) but poor Buffalo has now reportedly gotten 94 inches in some of the 'burbs!!! They are due to get another 24 inches by the end of the week and then it will be up in the mid-50sF on Monday so it will all melt. I am not sure which will be worse for them - buried under 9 feet of snow or washed away by 9 feet of melted snow...

I guess the biggest impact of the storm for me is that the bazaar at Fisher Price that was scheduled for tomorrow has been moved to Monday and I'm not sure that I can get Monday off instead. If I can't get Monday off, I'll still take tomorrow since I have to use up my vacation time so I'll work on Xmas pressies and make a squash gellette recipe I found the other day.

Monday, November 17, 2014

HeLP for Hexie-aholics for 11/17/14 - using binder clips

Hello and welcome to a snowy edition of HeLP for Hexie-aholics. Yes! You heard me right - we've finally got snow here in Western NY. Don't worry, I'll be sick of it soon enough...possibly even after the 2 feet we are due to get tomorrow which will probably cut our guild meeting short. Grrrr. I guess I best dig out my boots...

Anyway... a week or so ago, I was asked by JoAnn, friend of Margaret, where on my blog was the link to my tip/tutorial for using binder clips. I told JoAnn that I didn't have an actual tutorial on my blog but I would be happy to post it today for HeLP.

As I was getting ready for today's post I remembered the twisted hexie tutorial I had done back in August. There actually were photos in that tutorial showing the clips but also this next photo showing lots of clips and curving the pieces with the larger piece on the outside so I can fit them together if my basting wasn't quite as accurate as it should be. Be sure to got check out my comments on the other post.

For today's post I decided to work on a POTC block. My basic premise is that I have seen people who just hold the fabric to the papers, they use paperclips or they use Wonder Clips. Fingers can slip and if you need to set the project down it can all go wonky. Paperclips can snag on the fabric and I find Wonder Clips too big.

I use the mini binder clips found at Walmart - I think they were a box of 75 for $3.00 and yes, I've got two boxes of them for all my UFOs but that's a different story. I've also been known to hand over a couple to someone who is just learning to EPP...anything to get them addicted faster!

I start by using two clips, one on each side of the honeycomb paper. Some shapes only need 1 clip and others need more. I also use more clips if a piece is fussy cut so I can properly align the fabric to my paper.

As I put pieces together, I use a clip on each side of a seam.

Or as I need to put the odd shapes together I use a clip. I prefer a gentle rounded fold instead of actually folding and creasing the papers since the creases will make the paper deteriorate faster. I've been able to re-use some of my papers 15 to 20 times.

I hope these photos give you some idea on how I use the mini binder clips. I really like that the clips do all the work to hold things in place and especially if I have to set down my project so I can let his Highness outside. Not that I have to do that more than like 3 times a day or anything...

I appear to have left the block at home so I can't show you how far I got...maybe for Wordless Wednesday...