Saturday, October 24, 2020

Checking In to Say I'm Alive and Kicking

There's a new quilt in the hoop. Something easy and lighthearted. Possibly a little bit fallish too! It makes me very happy to have this in my lap late in the evening. Good vibes!
Dried Flowers

Of course I'm hand quilting it. Most of you know that machine quilting is definitely not my forte!
Getting sandwiched and pinned

I have a fond spot for this particular quilt. All the improv. strings make my heart sing. Plus using up the abandoned bits for the flowers was just pure fun. I'm probably overstating the case, but can you tell that this quilt makes me smile?
Looking at the applique

Then there's this Four-Block Tulip quilt on the wall. The color in the picture is not quite right but I confess that it still has an old fashioned vibe. Honestly, I'm loving that! Looking forward to putting a wide scrappy yellow border on next. Got to have a good background for more applique! And yes, I deliberately chopped the corners off of the square-in-a-square cornerstones....
4-Block Tulip Medallion on the wall!

I've also been staring at this small pile of fabric. Need to make a baby quilt and these just appeal so much! Pretty much every spare brain cell is dead though. Not coming up with any good ideas!

The fabric stack is marinating

Somehow in the busyness of life, we found time to take a family picture. Don't have our oldest son and his wife {and grandkids} in it, but we were super happy with the fall tones. And it was all very impulsive one day {after church} when we somehow realized that our clothing matched very well. Hopefully I can get organized enough to get this on some Christmas cards here in a couple weeks.
Family is everything
And yes, I have most definitely gained some Coronavirus weight this year. My youngest daughter and I have been getting some walks in on a regular basis lately, trying to improve our mental health and hopeful get me {a little tiny bit} closer to a healthier weight. 

Pumpkin bread

But you know how it is. Fall is in the air and doesn't that mean it's time for pumpkin bread? I'm just not gonna stress too much about it. There's enough of that going on in life! We actually had snow yesterday though it didn't stick here in town. Thank goodness! I'm so not ready for winter! On a good note, I'm thinking that one more week in the home office and then that particular backlog will be finished up and out of my hair. Yay! Is my creativity completely dried up and blown away by now? You don't even know how very, very sick of paperwork I am....

Tuesday, October 13, 2020

A Peachy Finish

So I finally got Peachy Cameo quilt hand quilted and bound! Lots and lots of distractions this past month and unfortunately, hand quilting did not always make the priority list. It turned out to be such a pleasant quilt, almost restful looking! Turns out that I adore strong blues paired with orangey reds and peach. Who knew?
Peachy Cameo is finished!

The original intent was to use loads and loads of the peach solid fabric, but somehow it only ended up with one wide border. Not terribly unhappy with that outcome as the quilt ended up with a nice peachy glow regardless. Something to remember. A little bit can sometimes go a very long ways! The fabric behind the blue circle-ish blocks is a darker peachy brown colored fabric. It was something that had languished in the stash totes for at least 10 years and finally found a wonderful home in this experimental palette. I love how the darker shade grounds the quilt just a little bit more than the lighter shades would have.

 A look at the full quilt

Every time I finish up another medallion sort of quilt, it seems that I'm raring to go on yet another. I definitely don't want all of my quilts to read this way, but hey! Medallion quilts can be sort of addictive!


I don't usually put eyes on the birds in my quilts, but this one insisted. This centerpiece is not especially intricate or fabulous, but I am super happy with the overall sweetness. And the background fabric for the centerpiece makes my heart go pitter patter. Too bad I only had a fat quarter of that particular fabric!

Looking across the quilt

I think it's safe to say that many of us who have quilted for years and years often get in our little 'ruts'. We have preferences and go-to background color choices and it's easy to stay in our safe little comfort zones with very little thought. With this quilt, I was determined to step away from the cream background look that I continually turn to. Then of course, I ended up working cream into the quilt anyway, first in the very center of the quilt and then later, at the outside border. Just can't seem to help myself! I felt like the quilt needed the lighter color at the outside especially, just to continue with the soft, open look that had been developing. There's something about the way the borders almost seem to 'flow' through one another that is very intriguing to me.

Border work

This entire quilt is my own design. Like usual, in the initial planning stages, I drew up a rough draft {quilt doodle}, just basic ideas for the borders and a general plan of attack. I love starting with a scribbled-on-paper feeling of what I think/want the quilt to look like. The details are not super important at that point. It's more about getting the intended vibe drawn out in picture form before being totally forgotten and swept away in the detritus of life. You have to remember that I often take several years from the very first seed of inspiration to final quilt completion. Not to mention, there are usually many other quilts in the works at the very same time!

Overall I think this quilt was successful in maintaining most of that original intended vibe. The only thing that I wish had turned out differently, would be the green vine applique. It should have been more rounded {or bowl shaped} on the bottoms of the vine. There were several factors involved in that decision, including having to increase the vertical width of the border or potentially losing the amount of tulips and berries that could be added in. Maybe even having to make the tulips smaller? Knowing that the side borders were going to be altogether different kept me more focused on 'proportion' than maybe I should have been.

Bottom corner details

As usual, I started this quilt with a stack of long-simmering fabrics. The colors used in the centerpiece were vitally important in setting the tone of the entire quilt. I've found that if you get that part wrong, there are certain colors in that gorgeous stack of fabric that will never, ever play nicely together. Always so disappointing to have to abandon perfectly lovely pieces of fabric that originally seem destined for good use together. But it does happen. And sometimes it even hurts.

With a medallion quilt, I make notes of which color combination to try and use in each proceeding border, trying to tie back into the centerpiece of course. This is something that I audition several times throughout the making of the quilt top. If I use a lot of blues in this border, then what works best moving forward to the next round? 

Sometimes you find that a coping border will be needed and then there's the challenge of finding a fabric that doesn't read too glaringly 'off' or ends up being distracting. It's important that coping borders fill a minor role and don't take away from more complex border work done before or after.  I hit the jackpot with this very light blue fabric. For whatever reason, that soft, simple fabric ended up emphasizing my centerpiece, which was an awesome result! 

For those of you who were wondering, the light blue coping border was needed in order to have the next pieced border fit together properly.  Though it doesn't usually bother me, I didn't want anything chopped off in this quilt. And well..., it has to be said. I rarely plan ahead for perfect measurements at the exact moment of starting a quilt! Maybe I should? Hmm...  Most of you know very well by now, that my preferred method is simply 'eyeballing' things. If something looks good to my eye {or appeals to my gut instinct}, then it's a go. Everything after just has to be made to adjust and fit in. It's the human touch look that I'm after. Absolute perfection is just sooo boring!

So even with the original scribbled quilt plan, I never truly know what my quilts will look like until they are 100% completed. The entire project becomes a huge make-do effort as one decision informs the next one. That's the way that my personal creativity works best. Meeting the challenge of getting a quilt top to 'work' at each particular phase, whether that includes color, fabric, measurement issues or perhaps even needing to add in a new design element. The best quilts keep me on my toes throughout, cause me to think outside the box for solutions and often end up with something that surprises.

In this quilt, the 'surprise' is the multi-colored fabric that was used for the scalloped border. Deliberately cutting that fabric in a specific direction gives it a subtle striped look that just makes me smile. I would have thought that fabric entirely too busy for use as a scalloped border, but no! Turns out it was the perfect choice {color-wise} for that particular border and then it was just a matter of figuring out how to use it best. How could I not use it when the colors were so very spot on? We all know how difficult it is to find these pieces of fabrics when the moment is at hand. 

Okay, enough babbling. Time to quit avoiding the to-do list around here! It's good to have another 2020 finish wrapped up and behind me. 


Saturday, October 3, 2020

The Applique Ideas That Never Seem to End

I've been home for a few days now and have thoroughly enjoyed some quality time to sit and quilt. Quietly. Peacefully. Getting to go to the Oregon coast for a couple days apparently reinvigorated something deep within me. We don't always realize how badly a little 'time out of time' vacation is needed until the moment that we're breathing it in. Until the moment we walk back through the door of our home and are so very glad to be HOME.
Love Apples progress

The main project that I worked on while away from home was the 'Love Apples' quilt. I couldn't believe it when I looked back and realized that this quilt has been in the works since May. My oh my, how time slips away! Such a happy project. I knew I would love doing the stitching on this one! With a little more time spent on it after returning home, all the stems are stitched now on the 21 background squares. One block is completely finished up just so I could see how it was all going to look. And then I was abruptly done with that project for the present. Funny how that happens. 

Thankfully I hadn't cut out all the leaves as I determined that the size of my template needed to be one seam allowance larger. That's something that happens altogether too often around here, so I've learned to expect it and actually, even to look for it. The smallest pile of lemon shaped parts is the cut-outs from behind the larger, layered pieces that make up the Love Apple flowers. No clue what will happen with those little bits yet, but I'm sure they'll be happy enough to rest in the orphan applique totes until further notice.


And speaking of orphaned applique bits.... After being home for a little bit, I decided the project that I most wanted to work on was Coronacrazy. Kind of surprising as it's been awhile and honestly, at times, I was feeling a bit down with the entire idea. Another whole applique quilt? Whose idea was this anyway? The quilt start is approx. 42" x 47", so lots bigger than is naturally comfortable for hand applique work. It's crazy. {Thus the name.} Lets just call it a Covid-19 mush brain quilt and every quilter {everywhere} totally gets it. All I know is that it totally made sense at the time.

Looking at the 'hills' that still need to be stitched down

All previous angst aside, this week I have slowly been plodding forward. Improbably, feeling really good about this quilt too! What I'm showing you here represents hours and hours of stitching effort so I guess you could say that I've fully and unabashedly recommitted to finishing this quilt. I mean, not right this very minute, but eventually--as free time and mojo permits. 

Finally, last night I succeeded in reaching the point of getting all this initial flower applique stitched down. All the stems that tuck under the hills are fixed in place. Yes! Of course, there's still the upper side of the arches to stitch down and then next up I will address where and what leaves will be needed. After that, there will be the question of which other orphaned floral pieces will go on and yada yada yada. It's a phase by phase sort of quilt and I totally expect answers to manifest as each area become more and more defined. At some point I fully intend to think about a border. Or two. But that's in the future. Plenty of time for that when we get there!

As far as answers go, for instance, there was an area on the right side of the quilt where the hills looked pretty ragged as they practically dove off the side of the quilt. You can see this more clearly from the August auditioning work. It's something that I've considered here and there. Hmm.., does it look sloppy? Rushed? Crazy? lol  Could it be cleaned up without destroying the integrity of the folksy look that I was initially striving for? These and other random thoughts swirled around in the deep recesses of my mind on occasion.

As I was laying the quilt on the floor the other night {to better admire the whole effect of the finished applique stitching}, suddenly my brain engaged and I immediately knew what to do. Lightbulb time! It was so simple and yet, if I hadn't been steadily working on the quilt over a period of several days, my subconscious wouldn't have had that quiet time to dwell on and seek for answers. 'Cuz you have to know that I wasn't even positive that it needed changed. It was more like a little niggle of irritation, not a clarion call to action! Whatever. I am loads happier with the look now. The quilt already seems to have oodles more potential to turn out well, right? It's okay. I think so and that's really all that matters.
The new start

And lest you think that I am losing my awesome abilities to impulsively start a brand new project, never fear. The squirrels are here. Oh yes. One of the marinating stacks of fabric is now well on its way to becoming yet another applique project. As if I don't have enough! Just blocks for right now in blue like the ocean. Wow. Just wow. So shocking! I'm calling this one 'Crazy Daisy'. Nope, not a tulip in sight fo this particular quilt. Just a ruffle-y look flower that will probably end up on with the blocks on point but yeah, we'll see about that. I don't even care. It's hand work. Fabric. Color. Peace.

I'm gearing up for yet another stressful month, albeit from a slightly healthier place. Lots of challenges facing us during this season that I'm not looking forward to at all, but that I know are unavoidable. Yay. 

Julie said something the other day that really resonated. I probably need to cut myself some slack too. She said her stash was soul soothing and I definitely feel that way about mine as well. What a great place to start. It's okay to dive in and start something new from pieces of what we already love or maybe even just stack up the fabrics and dream. Dreaming is good, even if it never goes anywhere tangible in the immediate future. {But I'm betting it will!}  Without getting too deep in the weeds, I just love how her observations matched up with several of the things that I've observed or experienced lately as well. It's good to have quilty friends. Enough babbling though. I've got approximately one day left of my gloriously people free home.*wink  Something that rarely ever happens around here....

Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Next Up

Our skies are blue again and that makes us very happy. Life was very slow for awhile, but sometime here at the end of summer it has gotten extremely busy. It's been long enough, a lot of the family is starting to come into town to see the parents again. Though we have to wear masks going into all the stores, our bubble just keeps getting bigger and bigger. Time for the government to take a big step back and let us be responsible for our own safety once again. Most of the people we know don't intend to live this way forever.
Binding all ready for hand work

It felt amazing to put the last few stitches in the Peachy Cameo quilt last night. Then, this morning, I got up early to put the binding on. Wowsers, the light was so pretty! I'm not generally a morning person, so this was an unusual thing, getting to fully experience the beauty of a quietly beautiful new day.
String quilt ready for the hoop!

I decided to put the string quilt in the hoop next. Not the quilt top at the top of the list, but it was the one that could be sandwiched and quilted in quick window of time late last week. And it feels right. I'm loving the idea of getting my hands on this particular quilt once again!
Love the energy to this one...

Also, I think it will be very therapeutic to hand quilt as the decisions will be minimal. Just pick up the needle and go. Stitch, stitch, stitch....
Lots more of these to sew!

I also managed to squeeze in a couple hours last week with the hourglass units that ended up being abandoned from another project. They aren't the prettiest things, but I enjoyed the mindless chain piecing so much. Was very sad when life got in the way and my time had to be redirected elsewhere. 

We're all packed up and about ready to leave for a week or possibly more time? away from home. Husband finally got the job stuff figured out after many delays {story of our lives}, and now it's time to go take care of the job away from home. There will be people here in our home so don't think I'm announcing an empty house to the world. Hoping to squeeze in a fast trip to the Oregon coast during the time away too. We'll see. Got my handwork bag all prepped and ready to go. Of course! Thankfully I checked it again last night because I had managed to forget the 'proper' color thread for an applique project. Hmm... I wonder if that was a sneaky way to go visit a quilt store? It's so crazy. When I think back throughout the year, I can only think of maybe three times I've actually been inside of a quilt store. How sad is that? 


Saturday, September 12, 2020

Hanging In There

We're mostly doing fine, just feeling headachy and stressed. Very thankful that so many of the people we know and love have been able to return already to an intact home. Today though, the fires are a few miles away and across the Columbia river. Much closer than we can possibly be happy about. No evacuation notices for our little town just yet, but it could come. Uggh. I've got a file box of important papers ready just in case, but nothing else. We're just tired. Weary. Sick that this particular fire was started intentionally. Some people have mental health problems, that's all I'm gonna say.
4-Block Tulip Medallion

In an impulsive move, I decided that there really should be something hanging up on that little design wall of mine. There needs to be something to look at and consider whenever I come into the quilt room. Something that doesn't take me having to pull it out of a tote just to look at. Decisions are hard right now. Even the silliest of ones.

All the pieces were cut using a small template
called a 'Mini Dresden' I picked up at Walmart

So  out came the 4-block Tulip quilt project. You know, the boring blocks? I'm making these pieced sashing strips to frame them. All the blues were cut strictly from the scrap bin totes and so the straight of the grain isn't always exact. I'll deal with the foibles of that later. Eight more sets to go and then I'll have to figure out the inner strip color and all the cornerstones. Probably gonna be applique there. I mean, why not?
Trying not to man handle them too much!
I've also been plodding through the steps to bring the T blocks to completed quilt top phase. This isn't a particularly inspiring quilt top, but all of it has come directly from the stash totes or a cut-up plaid shirt or two. It's kept me busy in a totally non-pressure way. 

Vintage T quilt top is completed!

In this quilt I focused on 'old tired oranges' and found some success with using up some languishing bits. Like I said in a previous post, the color palette was found in one of my favorites of my dads well-used plaid shirts. I'm pleased to say that another of his cast-off plaid shirts has also found its way into this very quilt. I've had it for a very, very long time and never found a good use for it until now. Seems rather fitting. And yes, he's still alive. Mom and dad both are, though getting more fragile with every year it seems. Much better to make this sort of quilt now than later when I would cry buckets, right?

Loving this green fabric so much...
I changed out the fabric on the plus block below three different times. Or was it four? Don't know why I even bothered as eventually this quilt will probably be used as a comfort quilt. Or not. There is that sentimental attachment after all! Some of the smaller orange rectangles are pieced as are the longer orange strips. It's all make-do and somehow sort of sweetly old fashioned. I don't love it, but I'm happy with the simplicity and {un}pretentiousness of it all.
It may not be special, but it's keeping me busy...

One evening I couldn't settle and finally went scrounging for a new fabric pull to cheer myself up. Funny how melancholy it looks with only blues, greens and blacks being represented, ha ha. Not so cheery after all unless you're a quilter. Then you probably understand.  Guess it will be a moody Judy sort of quilt if/when I ever cut into the fabric and give it a go!

I also have given the quilt room another good tidying up in the past week. Had a lot of fun opening up all the smaller totes of fabric stacks and also gave all the simmering stacks on the counters a good long look. Nothing went promptly back into the stash totes, so I'd say there's still some potential there in each and every one. In fact, my heart actually did the little 'pitter-patter' thing just imagining a couple of these worked into a quilt design. Couldn't quite bring myself to actually cut into anything this week, but ideas are slowly bubbling up in the back of my conscious. I can feel it happening.
A new stack of fabric to think about...

Finally found a window to watch an episode of 'The Quilt Show' featuring Sujata Shah and Freddy Moran. You can find the link over at The Root Connection though time is running out to access it for free. Am so glad I took the time to watch this as both quilters are long time faves of mine. Really made me aware {once again},  of how much I NEED a source of creativity in my life! Especially right now. Wowsers. Some nights it's all I can do to pick up the hand quilting hoop and stitch part of a hoop. The thing is, no matter how difficult it seems to be to get started, I always, always feel so much better afterward. Crossing my fingers this publishes properly as our Internet has been very erratic this past week. So there you go, another post from Debbie Downer desperately trying to keep her chin up. Things could be much, much worse and we're thankful they're not. One day at a time!


Friday, September 4, 2020

Still Playing With Fabric

Here I am with another finished quilt top. This one went together very easily after the details were sorted out.
Spring Flowers
I don't have a lot of time for writing this post, so will try to be brief.

Looking across...
Part of me is unhappy with the harshness of the finished look, but the other part of me is pleased to see something semi-coherent looking. You know how it is when the original idea drifts away on moonbeams. Finished is better than perfect!

Lots of energy in that border...
The bright, chrome yellow inner border is really interesting resting against the zingy brown and cream striped fabric. So much energy going on that it almost makes me cross my eyes. I'll almost definitely be giving this one away some day in the future as it just doesn't feel quite 'me'.
So hard to get a good picture of this one
So happy to see the flowers doing well in a quilt of their own though. Each quilt project seems to want to teach me something. Am I listening and learning?

Another oddball project going on in the quilt room is these new little T-blocks. The block itself has been on my bucket list for years and years and these colors were inspired by a fave shirt that my dad wears fairly often. As I have played around with adding in additional colors and attempting a potential layout, the temptation is pretty strong to toss them and give up. Sometimes the summer brings some very, very strange color palettes into being around here. The plan was for a nostalgic, retro vibe to hopefully meld with a soft, mellow tone and look. 

Love Apples for the win
Yep. It ain't happening. Too much crazy stuff going on around here of late, my brain totally feels like mush. The only thing that feels good to work on is these Love Apple blocks. Other projects were probably more in the 'priority' stack, but who cares about that?

The dreaded paper work is finished up through what I consider to be phase 2, which is amazing. So many hours to get there. After a long Labor Day weekend, I hope to get started on the third phase and then we're off on a week long work-week away from home {for the husband}. There will be visiting with family during that time so that's a bonus, but as soon as we get back then I hope to dive right into phase 4 and then that will be the sum total. My goal is to be completely through it all by the end of September. If I don't lose my mind and all my marbles in pursuit of reaching that specific goal.

An interesting thing happened this week when we had unexpected guests. Just a short visit, but it quickly became apparent to me that the woman friend was in desperate need of a hand work sort of hobby. For her mental health and well being? I let her lead the way in indicating interest, but before she left, I had given her a crash course in needleturn applique, scribbled notes in a quilt book and tried to hit the high notes on how to acquire a bit of fabric. Yep. Crazy, crazy days. I sent her on her way with one of my quilts, a little bag of fabric scraps plus all the encouragement I could muster! Have you ever met someone who was bursting at the seams to use their mind, heart and hands to create? Believe it or not, I was trying very hard not to push anything on her. I think it was as good for me as hopefully it was for her. Cannot wait to see where her creative journey takes her in the next year or two!

This year is definitely taking a toll on me as it no doubt is for many of you. Sometimes I walk into the quilt room and just blindly reach for something to chain piece. Other nights I sit down to hand quilt and find myself fiddling away on my phone for way too long. Just have to hit reset and dive into the things that pique our interests, whether the current projects move forward or not. At times like these, I feel very relieved to have stacks of fabric marinating on the counters and hand work all prepped and ready to go....

Monday, August 24, 2020

August Update

Decisions, decisions. It was either take the time to go quilt or take the time to actually write a post. Today I decided the post had to come first. 
Seedpod Flower quilt top is done!
What can I say about this quilt top? You already know that the flower itself was kind of an impulse, use-up-the-abandoned-bits sort of start
The full view
You also know that the inspiration pic was one that I fell head over heels in love with a very long time ago. Or did you? Regardless, I'm pretty impressed to actually see this interpretation finally come to reality. I do so adore a scrappy, utilitarian sort of look!
Scrappy goodness
I suppose this quilt would have looked fine without the Seedpod Flower center. Maybe. At this point I can't even imagine the quilt without it though. Once I wrapped my mind around how it all needed to fit together, then the top went together relatively easily. The anxiety and avoidance up to that point was stupid. Why do I always tend to overthink?
Trying to UP the 'busyness' factor with the prints this time!
All the economy blocks are the same size which means the horizontal rows are the exact same width. That was an important detail moving forward. The random placement thus relies strictly upon the differences in the various lengths of the connecting rectangles. 
A new color palette for me, but somehow it seems to work!
While they are not nearly as tall as the ones used in the inspiration picture, these started out from the scraps leftover from cutting the economy blocks. That was a good place to start. Hard to throw away the very narrow ones!  And so... determining approx. vertical measurements for the connecting rectangles became unexpectedly very simple. After all, I really didn't want the differences to be super extreme. A couple inches at most and there I was. Easy peasy.
Looking across...
Crazy how the bright, sparky applique addition to the inside border brightens everything up. I do wish the very slight, lighter blue outline above the curves still showed, but it ended up being turned under for seam allowance. This was just another one of those impulse rabbit trails that turned out to be a wonderful idea in the end. Sometimes it's nearly impossible to keep myself from traveling down the path of 'I wonder if x, y, or z would make things look better....'. 

Sometimes it works to the good and other times I find out that it's clearly wasted time. Never really know till you try though! I love how the yellow in the applique surround is more citrus than the rest of the yellow golds in the quilt. Yet it works as a very definitive framing for the Seedpod Flower, which of course, is the star of the entire quilt. Why not emphasize that even more!

This quilt top has a very distinctive mood, one that I can't quite put a proper label to. Is it retro? Vintage? Does it just convey fond memories of my grandmothers house dresses or perhaps it was the aprons she wore? Whatever it is, the mood as a whole, brings a smile to my face every time. 
Working on Spring Flowers
Another project that I've been spending time on in Spring Flowers. After seeing how washed out the flowers looked, I decided they needed a little bit of pzazz added in somewhere. After debating several different ideas {most of them ridiculously complex}, I ended up going with a very simple rail fence sort of block as the alternate. Lots of turquoise used to wake things up, but I also made sure to add insome clashy blue. For value and interest of course. There's just something about doing the unpredictable that always strongly appeals to me when it comes to quilting! The long narrow strips of the cream background fabric were added in after I realized that the flowers now needed some breathing room. So glad I had enough of that particular fabric because everything else just looked sloppy.
Auditioning border ideas
The brown and light cream striped fabric was something that I locked onto early on in auditioning border ideas. There's just something about a good striped border that speaks to me. Lots of ideas in play until abruptly I was completely done with dithering. The pink/rose fabrics were totally scrapped and simplicity became the name of the game. While I kept the strong chrome yellow, narrow, inner border {the blendy mustard gold fabric that seemed obvious was boring}, everything else got stripped down to basics. Will see how this border turns out in the end, but the thrill was just gone. Oh, and all the other orphan bits were dumped back into the totes too. So done with this particular project.Time to move on when it's not fun anymore!
Peachy Cameo in the hoop
The hand quilting is moving quite slowly on Peachy Cameo, but there's nothing very complex about what I'm doing. Sensing a theme here? One last hoop on the blue circle areas and then I'll be working on the two outside borders. I think they both will fit into one hoop {as far as width} so that's good. We're entering the long, long home stretch!
A closer look
As you can see, I often take the clamp off of one side when hand quilting. In this case, two of the blue 'circles' are right where the clamp would be, making it impossible to quilt in that area if it were to be attached. Honestly, I don't know if this is laziness or efficiency, but with this sort of quilting, having one clamp off is rarely a problem. The funny thing is, after all these years of working with only Perle Cotton thread and a long needle, my stitches are getting smaller. Still not super close together, but it's not exactly big stitching any longer. Oh well. Love the look regardless. All that instant texture is very addicting!

Will try to catch up with my emails and reading and/or commenting on other blogs in the next couple days. Have seen several posts in the Bloglover app that feel important to comment on, but the time simply hasn't been there. With time being diminished for quilting around here, often times there's really only one choice!