Monday, December 26, 2016

En Provence Mystery Quilt Clue 5

Clue 5! Can you believe we have been doing this for 5 weeks already? Where does the time go? Actually considering the introduction prior to the clues, Bonnie Hunter's En Provence Mystery Quilt has had our eager attention for quite a while longer. I'm loving this years mystery. Thank you Bonnie!!

Squares marked and stitched
This past Thursday I was under the weather so I decided to get organized. Yeah right! Like that is going to ever happen. I sat and counted my units for each clue. I was done with the neutral 4 patches but lagging on all the others. Funny thing though, once I counted and realized how few units I needed to finish the other clues, I felt perky enough to sew. Apparently I'm still a child wanting a day off then finding the energy to play after all. I'm proud to say that by dinnertime I had completed clues 1, 2 and 3. Yippee! Clue 4 is in progress.

Purple and neutral is really growing on me

Clue 5 is small - just a half million purple and neutral HST (half square triangles). Easy peasy lemon squeezy, except its grape not lemon. Or purple. But anyway ....

Fields and my baby tree nursery

Do you feel a bit blue - down in the mouth - melancholy in the winter months? Or during the holidays? I've been feeling dull and I'm trying to be more proactive this winter. Rearranging my sewing room put my sewing table right in front of a south facing window. Might be a day of glaring sun in my eyes or just another gray day - either way I have more of a view. Yes, I do move my fabric away from the window so it won't fade. The view isn't amazing this time of year but it is Gods creation with a little rural domesticity mixed in. I love it and I'm very thankful.

Have a fantastic week!

Monday, December 19, 2016

En Provence Mystery Quilt Clue 4

Clue 4 of Bonnie Hunter's 2016 Mystery Quilt is here and all over the globe quilters are feverishly stitching purple and neutral tri rec units.

Unless you're me.

I am sad. Christmas has some past harsh events so I tend toward caution each season. This year though, this past week, I lost a friend. My family lost a friend. He was only 62. Only 62!! Life is harsh for many and he embraced adventure and lived a full, amazing life in spite of genetics that would drag him down.

So this week I have cried and mourned. I did stitch a few tri recs but the bulk will be done as I can thru the holiday hustle.

If you are a diabetic - TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF!
If you know someone struggling or living with diabetes - appreciate them, love them, help them.
Life is short and very sweet.

Have a great week!
Have a very Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 12, 2016

Clue 3 En Provence Mystery Quilt

Are you stitching along with Bonnie Hunter's mystery quilt En Provence? I enjoy the fun and friendship plus I get to learn new skills. I'm a self taught quilter so Bonnie has her work cut out for her, LOL :)
My husband wandered in and got trapped counting Clue 1 units
Last week I had chores and had to leave my ironing board draped with 4 patches waiting to be pressed open. And trimmed. I dislike trimming units down and I love trimming units down because I like knowing I have wiggle room. Plus I had some 2 1/4 neutral strips I wanted to use. Good news though - they are finished! Waste nothing!

Clue 2's Tri Rec units are about halfway done. I am making a few extra units of each clue since I will probably make this quilt a bit bigger that Bonnie planned. And just in case I goof ...

My stack looks wonky but they really are properly square.

Clue 3 is more 4 patches, this time in lavender and purple. I love the 4 patches. What I really love? The darling tiny 4 patch on the back when we spin our seams! Its so stinking cute!

Have you been stitching? Shopping for the holiday season? I'm avoiding shopping. We will see how long that lasts for me ... Have a fabulous week!

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

En Provence Clue 2 in progress

 I have clue 1 of En Provence almost done. I actually have not counted, LOL. I added some neutrals to my selection. It stretches my comfort level. I like scrappy but I want my colors to be very, very close to one another. Having tan, cream and patterned fabrics all in one group makes me edgy. But that is why I want to do Bonnie's fabulous Mystery Quilt along. She pushes me to do more, learn more and stretch my mind.

And as I stitched the strips together I started liking the play of the fabrics and shades. And I just love the tiny, little, spun 4 patch of seams on the back of the block.

Clue 2 was released this past Friday and Sunday I slipped away to have some Mystery time. Thankfully I was introduced to Tri Rec units during Celtic Solstice. I felt confident that I can accomplish this task.

The trick for me is to be very sure I match the little cut corner on one edge and the long straight edge on the other. They stitch up properly each time. Whew! I'm so happy I persevered on Celtic Solstice as it taught me so many techniques in a short time frame. Thank you Bonnie!

I only had time to finish 16 tri recs before kids and grandbabies arrived. I cook Sunday supper for all my family each week. This week was lasagna and garlic bread. Family time keeps us close and happy :)

Have a great week everyone!!

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Triple Irish Chain finished!

The Triple Irish Chain quilt is finished. Wahoo!! I took some pictures but not a lot. I slipped up. I got excited to finally be so close to done.

Stitching the rows of the 49 square blocks to the background blocks starts with making a lot of paired blocks.

Back from the quilt shop so I can trim and bind it.

Washed and hung out on the line to dry. All 119" x 119" inches of it. And done!

Monday, November 28, 2016

En Provence, 2016 Bonnie Hunter Mystery Quilt, Clue 1

Triple Irish Chain for one son
 Are you participating in Bonnie Hunter's 2016 Mystery Quilt, En Provence? There is still time to join in on the fun if you are so inclined. I am behind due to wrapping up 2 king sized quilts for my sons, as well as Thanksgiving but I will catch up.

Ripple Effect of Wolves for my other son
This year Bonnie took inspiration from her visit to Aix en Provence, France. Her pictures are beautiful showing lavender fields, quaint towns and lovely buildings. I love her colors! Light lavender, dark purple, green, yellow, magenta plus neutrals.

I was able to pick up the corresponding paint chip samples at Lowe's the Wednesday before Thanksgiving. However it was Friday before I could sift thru my stash to see what fabrics I might have that would work. Clue 1 was already released! I was late! But it turns out I am almost set for fabrics!

Bonnie likes scrappy quilts and I am limited for fabrics. I only found 2 of the green and pale lavender but I'm ok with that. One bright yellow. I can always pick up more later (Clue 1 just used the neutrals). Magenta is the constant with Bonnie planning it for only one color - check, I got that. The darkish purples .... I had 2 possibilities but they don't work well together. My opinion. The butterfly fabric on the left I love but it barely clashes with the lavenders. The darker on the right would be great for balance but not enough yardage. So, sadly (bwahahahahaha) I need to shop for fabric.

My neutrals are boring but they will work. The patterned tan may not make the final cut. Or maybe I am just being too sensitive. Now to get busy cutting and stitching to complete Clue 1. What are you stitching this week?

** Updated**
What do you this of these neutrals? Will the white with colors work?

Do they contrast enough with my yellow?

Irish Chain square blocks

I've been stitching strip sets. Cutting strip sets. Stitching blocks. Press. Do it again.

I love the 40 square blocks. Lots of blues. Lots of movement. And thankfully I managed to keep all my strip sets in the right order to make the block production go smoothly. Amen,

My quilt will be 11 x 11 rows, a total of 121 blocks. 61 blocks of the 49 squares. 60 or the background squares.

I admit I worked hard to stay focused to get the right rows in the right order. I had my thinking cap on :)

And a good start to lots of blocks.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Irish Chain anyone?

I have started on my first Irish Chain quilt. Have you done one? I think they look awesome and supposedly they are fairly quick and easy to assemble. Which is good because I want to give this to my youngest son as a Christmas present. This year! LOL

I chose to do a Triple Irish Chain. Because I never do anything the easy way. I'm using some Kona cottons in blues that I bought thinking I would use them in a mystery quilt along. Then I didn't participate, LOL. I feel so blessed to find myself with 3 or so yards of each blue. I was pondering what colors and patterns or fabric lines to use when I remembered these cottons tucked in a bag, in a box, under some stuff. And they will be perfect.

Who else loses fabric under 'stuff '? I know I'm not alone. Anyone? Sighsss just me.

I spent a few hours cutting strips. Can we talk about an adventure with a dull rotary blade? Not today? OK, we will move on. Anyway if my loose math was correct, I have enough strips to piece the blocks with a zillion squares. We will see.

Aren't the strip sets pretty?

Monday, November 21, 2016

Wolf Quilt Finale

Remember the wolf quilt I started last January? It is done! I'm so happy and relieved. I had taken it in to be quilted and started a triple Irish chain quilt for my younger son while I was waiting. Well I got it into my head that I absolutely HAD to finish the new quilt before I put the label and binding on the wolf quilt. I do not know where my brain goes off track because you know I had life challenges come up while piecing the Irish chain quilt. Thankfully though I did complete it and got back to the wolf quilt. Amen!

 I trimmed off the extra batting. I often use these strips when I make burp cloths or potholders. Though I have several of this years Row by Row patterns which might work too.

I trimmed off the extra backing. I was able to cut a lot of my backing into binding strips. Bonus!

Now for the label. Which font? How big? What do I say!?!

I settled on a name for the quilt, Ripple Effect of Wolves. It pays homage to the reintroduction of grey wolves to Yellowstone Park. It had an amazing effect which you can read about here. I designed the block layout to show a natural green to blue ripple. It just fits for me.

This is laid across my king size bed.
Did I mention this quilt ended up big? It draped well over my king size bed.

Really big?
118" x 118" which is just short of 10 FEET! Eek.

I just love the running wolves :)

Edited to add a pic in the sunshine!