Monday, November 25, 2019

Just Hitting the High Notes Then I Gotta Run

Life has been so busy lately, it almost feels like I'm in free fall, no control whatsoever. I know that's not exactly true, but with Thanksgiving right in front of us {and a litany of things going wrong lately}, it's definitely been hard to manage all the things that need attention. Quilting is happening in very random moments of time and blogging is all about the speed reading and smiles.
Joining the rows for Roman Stripe quilt
I'll catch up real quick and then probably disappear for another couple weeks. Whatever little bits of time I have for quilting need to be just for that, not for proofreading my babbling blog posts! Roman stripes, above, is a project that was started back in September. It's a super easy project that concentrates more on the fabrics than on design and will probably turn out just fine, if not the 'fantabulous' that I usually strive for.

I LOVED the fabrics back when first stacking the fabrics together, and honestly, if I would have made the quilt at the same time? I'd be over the moon in love. Now I just feel happy and pleased, but ready to move on to a different quilt. We just never know how quickly our tastes can change do we? Somehow I cut out a lot more pieces than needed for the throw quilt suggested in the pattern and now am committed to making two of them. Oh well! Comfort quilts always seem to find a home around here and it will be good to have a couple ready to go when needed.
Blue Plumes
Blue plumes is currently out of the hoop and the first phase of binding is sewn on. I'm not sure exactly why, but this binding is taking me forever. I've been hoping to get this one completely finished up by Thanksgiving so I can gift it to the intended recipients for an 25th anniversary quilt! Almost there....

My washing machine went kaput this past week and I'm so ready for the situation to be resolved. A part is ordered and we're all crossing our fingers that my 'jack-of-all-trades' husband can fix the current issue cheaply. If not, it's black friday appliance shopping for us! Thanksgiving week company means lots of extra laundry plus I'd really like to wash this quilt after the binding is finished up. Gotta get rid of the blue marking lines and also, what's a quilt without that lovely freshly washed and dried crinkle look?
Autumnal Tulips
It felt really good to get all 30 tulip blocks stitched up to the point of needing leaves. First opportunity to lay them all out, I was busy trying to figure out the rest. The first leaves reminded me of slugs so that was a no-go.  All it took was a quick trim-up though and I felt satisfied with the resulting shapes. After a lot of time dithering, I finally decided to cut out the leaves in the rust, dark browns and also some navy fabrics. These are colors that I absolutely want to include in the quilt and in order to not lose the 'lightness' of the quilt, the sashing needs to be similar in color to the block background. So that's it. The leaves have to be dark. Decision made, time to trace and cut out the pieces!
Freehand applique
Lots of inward panic here with the holidays so quickly approaching. We've had different times of company being here with more to come, and in just a couple weeks there will be a Christmas tree in the house taking up room too. These are things which radically hinder my ability to sandwich and pin quilts, which of course, is a major problem. How can I survive the holiday season without a quilt in my lap Every. Single. Evening! Oh, you thought I was panicking about holiday preparations? haha  A person needs to have their priorities firmly in place!
Next quilt tops for quilting
I've desperately wanted to work on quilt projects 'in progress' but it seemed more expedient to get a couple tops ready for hand quilting. I sewed three {mixed fabric} backings together and then got two quilts pinned and ready for the hoop. That ought to be enough to take me clear though until January! If there's a good chunk of time between now and when the tree arrives, I might even get the third quilt sandwiched and pinned for machine quilting. Pushing my luck there, but it'll be nice to have it ready if somehow there's a window of opportunity.
Gather Ye Rosebuds getting sandwiched and pinned
I ended up choosing this 'Gather Ye Rosebuds' quilt for next-up-in-the-hoop. It's not one that I've been super anxious to work on, but the flowery vine is slightly reminiscent of Christmas Cactus and it's been in the drawers for ages now. Hmm... I can actually see this one becoming a quilt that only comes out during the holidays in years to come. Why didn't I think of that earlier?
Should be a good one for working on during the holidays
We made several trips over to Spokane in the last couple weeks so I took advantage and made a list to stock up on Perle Cotton thread that I might need for the next several quilts. Sew-EZ-Too on Garland street {where I take my Bernina for annual maintenance}, has Finca threads and now, a nice little section of Valdani too! Hey, hey, hey! Look who has less money in the bank account now! lol 
Love quilts with words
For the harder to find Valdani threads {usually the variegated}, I generally shop an Etsy store called 'NeedleCaseGoodies' first. After that, I will browse other Etsy stores and then, failing there, go to larger quilting stores if I'm looking for a specific number/color. And yes, I will use DMC threads or Presencia too--it's all good. I don't feel exceedingly picky, just preferential?
And baskets...
A couple of the quilt stores that I used to pop in occasionally have closed up shop in the past couple years. So disappointing, but it's not like I've been a regular customer myself, living three hours away. The good news is that the new quilt shop on main street, Reardan, Washington is a brand new fave. Check it out if you get a chance! I finally got to pop in an take a look about a week ago and am so happy that I did! Such a fun store. Love the exposed brick look and wow, really lovely fabrics and everything displayed in a wonderfully engaging way. I'm quite determined to dig deep and clear out some oldy moldies in the next year, but it's amazing how much easier it can be with some new lovelies mixed in. Okay, that's it for now. Hope everyone has an amazing Thanksgiving! I'm so looking forward to the family and food. The kids and granddaughters arrive in two days!! Still pinching myself over that term. Granddaughters. I'm not even 50 years old yet! Super sweet though. We're absolutely loving it! As my late father-in-law always used to say, 'If we'd have known how great it was to have grandchildren, we'd have had them first.'*wink


  1. Your projects are looking good and with all you have going on I'm amazed at all you're accomplishing.
    Happy Thanksgiving!

  2. Whatever else happens you have set your priorities! Enjoy your restful hand quilting during the busy time and enjoy the grandchildren!

  3. very pretty quilts and love 'gather ye rosebuds'....i always have basted stuff on hand so can quickly transition from a finish to a start...

  4. Rosebuds quilt is so pretty--(I am partial to Roses of any kind lol)
    I am struggling with my needleturn--and have "drawered" it for now--too much stress for me...hugs for a Happy Holiday Julierose

  5. I wish you and your family a very Happy Thanksgiving. Our gathering will be 37 this year (6 less than the record number). I'm guessing yours is pretty big as well! Hope you get some stitches in between cooking!

  6. Wishing you and your family a very Happy Thanksgiving. Hope you get a bit of stitching time scattered between all the holiday obligations.

  7. so you are a granny now :) they time will fly so quickly mine are 19 and 17 now. I guess I was probably around your age when they started to arrive. the quilts are all so nice and hope you get that washing machine fixed it is a horrible time for it to go out with company coming and knowing it will need to be used. hope you remember to take a photo of the quilt before it is gifted. I finished my Crossroads but haven't gotten a photo - waiting for the girls and dog to leave before spreading it out to get a photo.

  8. So much going on in your life! I hope the washing machine gets fixed really soon!!
    Have a super Thanksgiving!!

  9. Aak... I can relate (can't we all?)! My dishwasher is currently on strike and our appliance guy is AWOL, I have to give up my sewing room (aka guest room) for four days, meanwhile stressing over how to address the various diets, food allergies, demands and dislikes etc. Ahh... the holidays, right? Well I hope you enjoy yours, Audrey, in spite of all the chaos, and bask in the warmth of your family!

  10. ps... have you tried Rusty Crow for your Valdani needs? I believe Shawn carries them all.

    btw I love your pink tulips on the gray background. Wait... is that your carpet? Lol!

  11. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family, too. And I understand that feeling of pressure - it is alive and well here. LOVE the idea of letting Gather Ye Rosebuds be a seasonal quilt. I'm working more and more in that direction (spring, summer, autumn, "winter") and loving the rotation of quilts/colors in the house.

  12. Your quilts are beautiful. Hope you are able to spend some moments with a needle and thread in hand in the next weeks ahead. :)

  13. I'm with you - it feels weird to not have hand quilting or other hand piecing handy for evenings! Your rosebud quilt is looking so pretty. Happy Thanksgiving - enjoy your grand daughters!

  14. Yes, your new non-slug leaves are very pretty. Didn't those autumnal tulips turn out beautifully. So many lovely projects to consume your time, Audrey. Love them all. Wishing you the best of family times and Stitching Times too!

  15. Everyone came here for Thanksgiving this year, too. What fun we've both had. It's so quiet now they are all gone.
    You are so smart to pin baste several projects for December and the Rosebuds will make a beautiful Christmas quilt. Good idea. Enjoy both the quilting and your family.

  16. An enjoyable gallop through your current projects. I hope you manage to keep things ticking over - the year is only going to get busier from here, I think.

  17. Lots of interesting quilt projects! Hope you find some 'down' time to sit & sew.


I love getting comments and always try to respond via email. If you aren't getting replies back from me, try leaving your email address within the comment. Due to Blogger changes, I've heard that some people aren't able to leave comments here at all. In that case, you can always email me at audkateaster at gmail dot com if you'd like and I'll respond from there. Thanks so much for visiting!