String Challenge and More

I worked on my string blocks.  Last week I got them sewn.  This week was trim time.

We had some rain one day this week so in the afternoon we were stuck indoors.  I asked the kids what they wanted to to.  The gal in the pink shirt said she wanted to help me do some sewing.  She’s one of the girls that I made the Zuckerwatte quilt for.  (Post here if you missed that) I had just finished trimming the blocks while the kids were napping so I thought maybe they could help me de-paper the blocks.  The gal in the pink is an “old pro” at this…the others, they were new to it so my “old pro” taught them how.

As quick as a wink all the blocks were de-papered.

So now my tally on finished blocks looks like this….I need 48 and have 49.  Well that works for me!!  Now I can start sewing them together.

I did do some other sewing by that is all Double Wedding Quilt Along related and I’ll tell you all about that on Wednesday.

Right now I am doing the debate….do I finish this Daylilies quilt now or wait and take it to the retreat which is only about three weeks away.  Hmmm.  We’ll see what time allows for.

Stash Report Kaffe @ Goodwill

Wednesday had a little bit of a new look at my house.  Being an in home childcare provider is not for the faint of heart.  The hours are long and childcare related things extend into personal time hours.  I have been open from 7am to 5pm for a long time.  That’s 10 hours days for those who are counting.  I am always downstairs and prepping for the day by 6:45am. I fill cups, prep meals and get activities out for the day.  When closing times comes I often had 15 minutes more of clean up….Changing sheets, reorganizing and putting the last few things of the day away.

What people don’t always realize is that there is more time that goes into childcare than that.  Often in the evenings there’s book work or extra trips to town for groceries or supplies.  It’s long days…This summer I made a hard decision to close early on Wednesdays.  Now closing time has moved to 4:20pm rather than 5pm.  I know it doesn’t sound like a lot but it’s what I really need.  I can leave and get to town, get my things and get back home without wasting a whole Saturday morning on errands.  I can’t tell you how much that small changed has made for my attitude.  I had one family that ended up having trouble with the change but they had a back up plan so it’s all okay.

Lucky for me my favorite thrift store is open and I can stop when I am out…and Goodwill is open too.  Typically I’m not much of Goodwill shopper.  I know some of you will laugh but around here…it’s too expensive.  This last week I did stop…I didn’t have a lot of errands to do so I figured I had enough time to.  I did find this…a bag of fabric for $5

I didn’t know if I should get it.  I haven’t been sewing a lot so why am I buying more fabric?  Right?  Then I saw something in the bottom of the bag and I thought it was maybe a Kaffe fabric…and I opened the bag when I got home and it….was!!  See?

YAHOO!!  It’s about a yard of fabric all together.

There were some fabric that I’ll be passing on…this….It’s heavy weight.

There were patriotic fabrics that I’ll move on to a Quilt of Valor group…

The floral is 90″ wide but there is only about 3/4 of a yard of it.  I’ll be able to use it for a baby quilt…the pink I’ll save for a charity quilt binding.

There were a few other goodies that I’m keeping….The sewing machine fabric I’ll give to Kelli for her scrap vortex quilt.  The batik for me and the orange piece is a suede.  I have a box that I keep potential doll clothes fabric.  It will go there for sure.

Also in the bag was this…two pieces sewn into a table runner of sorts.  I’m going to cut the seams off and make it into fabric again.

While I was there I found this little quilt…already in use.

I grabbed it up right away as it was embroidered.  I love embroidery but then realized is was a polyester quilt.  UGH.  Then I felt it and it was super soft..and super cozy on the back.  It was only $2 so I decided to get it.   The kids love it….yes, they even fight over it.  It is known as the puppy/kitty quilt as the embroidered blocks all have puppies or kitties.   Who ever thought to embroider on polyester??

Who ever thought I’d meet Kaffe at Goodwill…or get a polyester quilt?  It’s part of the adventures that are coming my way now that I’m getting out of work early on Wednesdays.  Closing early on Wednesdays (even thought it’s only 40 minutes earlier) is one of the best things I’ve ever done for myself.  I originally thought I’d do it for the summer only but nope…I’m almost positive I’m extending it and making it a permanent change.

Braids the Lazy Quilter Way

It’s time for me start working on the braids for the borders of my Bricks in the Barnyard quilt.  The looks a lot more complicated than they actually are.

A while back I sewed together Bonnie Hunter’s Texas Braids quilt….see here…Texas-Braids-1

That was a lot of braids.  Kelli started one…Kayla started one.  Both of them quit as they got sick of jumping up and ironing all the time.  Phht.  Iron, what’s that?  I know some of you might faint dead away when you hear this but I didn’t iron a single seam of mine until the entire braid was finished.

I’m the leader of a bandwagon who believes ironing and pressing quilts is WAY over rated.  But as with everything people need to find their own way and do what is comfortable for them.  Me, I hardly iron until a block is finished….or in this case, a braid.

I thought I’d give you a peek at how me, the non-ironer, makes a braid.

I have two braids going at a time in my photos.  I feed two through then clip off the back braid and work on it.

I got started.  Now I am adding the rectangle without a red square attached.  See how the black printed piece needs to go in place?

When sewing that piece on it’s easiest if I place the black piece on the braid right sides together but then flip the entire braid upside down.  I am going to cross the seam where the red square was added.  There I make sure the seam is pointed to the red square….

Once it’s sewn I flip it over and check…all is right.  I finger press it back.

Next I need to add the rectangle with the red square attached.

Now I put the piece on top….I sandwich the seams, no pins needed.

I sew the seam, going slow at first to make sure the seam stays in place.

The top piece I am adding is shorted than the braid so after I’ve passed the length of the newly added piece I swerve off.

In 15 minutes I had two braids this long.  I never got up from the machine.  Easy peasy.

It did take a bit to get my system down but after that I did it was actually really quick…but that’s the no iron-no pinning method.  The regular way, if stopping to iron after each piece was added, that, would take MUCH longer.

My way isn’t the right way for everyone but it definitely is the right way for me.  If I keep it up, these braids will get done in no time.

String Challenge

***Thanks so much for all the bidding you have been doing on our charity quilt auction to help refugees.  If you missed that post or want to bid, follow this link.**

I had a few days off last week.  I had hoped to do sewing and sewing and sewing….I did sew a bit but not as much as I had hoped.  I got 14 sewn.  I need few more.  I have them started but not finished.  I sure would like to finish them yet tonight before bed but time is quickly ticking away.

I am so happy with myself for doing these all on the treadle.  One of my goals of the year was to learn to treadle.  I feel really comfortable with it now.  Another goal I had was to try to sew a whole quilt on it.  I won’t have a whole quilt but I will have a quilt with all of the string blocks sewn on a treadle.

Did you see Ruby sleeping on the couch while I worked?  That’s where she always is if I’m on the treadle.

Something else did happen….Do you remember be cleaning my sewing room way back in April?  You might not know this but…it still wasn’t completely clean and organized and that was THREE MONTHS AGO!!!  In the big move this old shelving unit that was in the closet got moved into the hallway….and there it stayed.  It stayed and stayed AND STAYED.  I told Hubby that that kids were coming home and we’d have help, it had to go.

We had help so we used it!!  Here is Karl to the left and Buck to the right.

If you remember- we can’t take furniture up and down our staircase.  When we remodeled the house we put a door in my sewing room and everything has to go in and out that door.

After Buck and Karl got it out the door, Hubby was at the bottom to “catch”.

Karl ran down stairs as quick as he could around and down to help Hubby “catch”.

They make me all so nervous.  Kelli had to take the pictures and had to busy myself elsewhere.  Ugh.  I wish things like that didn’t bother me so bad.

I am SUPER happy the shelf is gone.  Now I feel like I can finally finish cleaning the sewing room….but will I?  Eventually I’m sure.