Wednesday, May 29, 2013

225 square inches of gorgeous color

Oh, I am getting very fond of making these little quilts.  Nearly instant gratification!  This one isn't quite so little, 15" square, and has batting and a regular binding, unlike the ones for the teddy bears.  What you can do with some leftover charm squares and batting, and a couple of fat quarters!

I found those jewel tone charm squares and knew immediately what I wanted to do and love how it turned out.  You can't really see the machine quilting, but the wine thread follows the zigzag lines in the Courthouse Steps blocks.

Now to find an appropriate display spot for a while - until I launch into another one, of course.  

P.S. - you're going to laugh, but I made another smaller one for the bears!
Here they are on the corner of my desk.  This one's just 10 inches square.

Thursday, May 23, 2013

The world of small

I'm currently infatuated with making mini quilts for small doll and teddy bear displays.  I was prompted to do this when I found a teddy bear bed made by Boyd's that is darling but TINY.  So I investigated what it would take to make a very small quilt, and now, here I am eight quilts later and planning more in my head as we speak!

Here are what I've made so far.  Three of them are in vignettes that I didn't want to disassemble so the photos are of more than the quilt, but you can see the details.  The quilts are about 10" x 12", or 10" x 10" to 11" x 11".  The piecing is difficult working that small because the seam allowances are so thick they distort the quilt somewhat.  I'm learning more as I progress.

Now, here's the show:

A log cabin with 3/8" wide strips.  This might be my favorite:
 A nine patch with 1 1/2" blocks:
 A Trip Around the World with 1" squares, the first one I made (don't you love that tiny quilt rack?):
Crosses and Losses with 2" blocks:
 More 2" blocks, this time baskets:
Hourglass variant, 2" blocks:
 Amish strip design:
 My original design, inspired by the colors of a Kim Brackett quilt in "Scrap Basket Beauties":
I have two quilts, a zigzag set Jacks on Six and a Darting Birds design, in mind next.

These quilts only consist of top and backing, no batting since it would make them too stiff to drape over a doll bed or small quilt rack.  If I wanted to display them hanging I would have used batting.  I've started eyeing those small standing display racks that hold a quilt up to 12" square.  Hmm............

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Itty bitty blocks

That is a 2" finished basket block.  No, all the points aren't perfect but I'm absolutely tickled pink it turned out as well as it did.  Eight more of them and I'll have enough for a miniature quilt like this:

These little quilts are intriguing and cute as a button but boy, are they hard.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Another bear quilt

Because you never know when someone new might need a little warmth.

I bought another bear bed on Ebay today - it looks like an old-fashioned iron bed frame.  So cute!  Now I need to make another set of sheets too.

Only the best for the bears

I have a few teddy bears around the house.  The one my brother gave me on my first Christmas, a bear dressed as an aviator that my husband gave me for my birthday after I fell in love with it, the little bean bag teddy bear that traveled with me when I went to business functions out of town, the one that rode in my car with me for 10 years (unfortunately, there's no good place for him to sit in my new car).

I'm not really a bear collector, but if I see one that tickles my fancy or a cute accessory for the vignettes I'll get it if it's cheap.

They sit around the house:

 On the hearth:
 On my filing cabinet:
 In the corner of the dining room (his chair matches the decor):
 On top of my sewing room bookcase:
 Beside the magazine stand:
 Inside the bookcase by my old textbooks:
My current project is for this guy:
 The bed came with a red checked mattress and pillow.  Well, you know he needs a quilt, and if he needs a quilt, why not sheets?
And yes, that bottom sheet is fitted.  With elastic corners.

I'm making a "Trip Around the World" quilt for him right now.  And then, he'll get a nightshirt to match.  Excess, that's my name!

And here is the bear quilt:
No batting because it's already stiff, but quilted in the ditch and lined to the edge (no binding):
Even bears need a quilt!

Friday, April 26, 2013

A sign of things to come

You see a lot of signs on telephone poles.  Lost Dog, Garage Sale, Even, nowadays, Cash for Houses.  But this one was a first:
 Can you read it:?

"Cash for Diabetic Test Strips".

Oh God.  Is that the new black market item?  Diabetes has touched my life in several ways, and this makes me a bit sick.

You can tell exactly what's going on here.  If you're on Medicare and Social Security with the Part D prescription coverage you can get test strips at a reduced rate.  If you're trying to live on Social Security any addition money is a blessing.  So you sell half your test strips for extra cash and only test your blood glucose half as much as you should, even though testing is necessary to determine if your medication is working correctly and to make sure you are not getting into trouble health-wise.  But you've got the money to buy groceries.

Or you're one of the working poor who make a little too much to get Medicaid or assistance.  Test strips are expensive, some of them around $1.00 a strip depending on the brand, and depending on your condition and your medication you may have to test your blood glucose three or four times a day. So you buy test strips more cheaply on the black market, where they may be expired or have been kept in extreme heat or cold, which affects their accuracy.  You don't know if the results from those strips are correct or not.  You may be calibrating your insulin injections using a bad number.  But you can't afford to go down to the Rite Aid and buy them for full retail.  Not and pay the light bill too.

I can't drive by this sign every day and not almost cry.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Linda Hahn mystery, Lazy Sunday mystery

These are two mysteries that I have talked about but I don't think I've posted photos yet.  So here goes:

Linda Hahn's mystery on

and Lazy Sunday from the Quiltmaker magazine mystery:

We have ventured WAY outside my comfort zone with these colors!  But I have to admit that they are lovely.

And just so you know, I have NO IDEA where either of these designs are going.  Just along for the ride, folks.