I wiped away the weeds & foam. / I fetched my sea-born treasures home... Ralph Waldo Emerson

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Sewing Room Days

Hi, guys! Last Sunday the flea was rained out (as was yesterday's farmers market). Just as well as I had only $5.oo in my pocket, having spent all my flea market money getting my car all fixed up and serviced for the summer. New windshield wipers were urgent with the rain.
Instead I made my Westering Women block for [I guess] April.

The blocks are posted at the end of the month so I am chronically behind, but it's block 4, Kansas Lone Elm.

I used the wool challis from the flea, because it looks so much like the fabric in the dress on Brackman's blog post. Perhaps my imaginary pioneer woman had some fabric left over from her Sunday-best dress, tucked into her scrap bag? [link to the sewalong on Barbara Brackman's blog is on my sidebar. or HERE ]

Using antique fabrics in a new quilt can be treacherous. I don't want to use something that will disintegrate right away.  I carefully washed and tested the challis before using it, including making a tiny layered swatch which I ran through the wash on a regular cycle. I also backed it with tissue thin Pellon fusible interfacing.

I included the interesting hand seaming and and old repair.

I love my Lone Elm and with a lot of careful measuring it actually came out the requisite 12.5".

We did have one sunny afternoon, maybe last Saturday? Mo and I bundled up and sat on the deck to start Summetime's long borders. I had to stop working on Summertime during its allotted April project time because I didn't have enough of the background plaid. I had to do a LOT of piecing, even on the borders where I used the original blue. I think the busy-ness of the Basket and its berries/ leaves with hide the extra navy-black I needed to make the 60" borders work out.

Though I wish I'd had more success matching the two plaids. [The stem and berries will hide this flaw, however.]

The blue plaid piecing actually looks worse because I didn't have enough fabric to match the plaid properly. Bad, bad....
 I'm putting birds in my borders instead of stars. Maybe a zinnia-ish flower or two in needed, but No More Stars!

Yesterday I made the stem's bias fold strips with my new folder gadget and I made a paper pattern for the undulating design of the stem. I really criticize the magazine for just saying, "Oh do the borders by looking at the photo." But then the photo is so tiny and crappy I can barely see the details. Very disappointing. I wish there was either a border pattern or closeup photos of what it was supposed to look like..

Then today, rain again!---I made one border so far, testing  my layout.

The leaves can go on next, but the yo yo flower buds won't go on until the quilt is entirely finished, quilted, bound, washed. So it looks a little naked. The whopping 60 odd yoyos were beautifully made for me by my etsy/ blog friend Sue. Thank you, dear friend!

Then I cut Pokeberry's binding and I think I'll call it a day! It's Project Runway night.

This is a new project, a sewalong with Lori/ Humble Quilts. Another Porch quilt, we need a new name! Again, by Jan Patek. I fell for the whales and the watermelons. But that bike has got to go.

"Mo! Walkies!"



gone to the beach...

obviously NOT taken this week, but last year same week.....


  1. How special that new block is with the beautiful old piece of fabric and it looks wonderful.

  2. All of your projects are so pretty. The old (and so pretty) fabric you used for lone elm, incorporating the repairs, is the very definition of "wabi sabi"! I'm so tempted by Porch Time but ya I agree on the bicycle. What to replace it with? A big happy sun? Sunflower?

  3. You are so welcome, dear friend, for the yo yos! I feel honored to have them displayed on the glorious quilt! There is a "bit of beach" between NY and IL...next best thing to actually sewing with you in person. Blessings.
    Oh, by the way, I like the bicycle. Hmm...maybe an inspiration to join in on the fun?

  4. I like the Elm Tree block, it came out nice and I love the colors. And yay! The size came out right!

    I think the pieced plaid looks fine - maybe more authentic than if you had whole strips, because what pioneer woman would have chunks of fabric that large?! And I love the picture of Mo getting a 'close up' look.

    Susan McQuade was very wonderful to make all the yo-yos for you! I bought a yo-yo maker and still put it off - can't remember what I was going to make, now!

    I like the watermelon on the new quilt - but there are tons of stars, too. She seems to use them a lot! Maybe you should use flowers and hearts in place of some. Maybe a big flower in place of the bicycle? A sunburst?

    I hope you don't get TOO much more rain! You and Mo need some fun in the sun! Thanks for sharing!

  5. Sorry for so much rain! Hope it clears for you soon. But your quilt block is looking good. :) Kit

  6. I love the pieces you are working on! Spectacular, but you knew I'd think that.

    Does Mo have a new title? Quality control specialist?

    I am still futzing about with the quilting books I've found ... sooner than later, I'll do something with them!




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