Sunday, February 25, 2024

Sew & Tell ~ February 26, 2024

What a week. Parts of it seemed to crawl by, but also in a strange way, sped by so fast!  I accomplished lots, so let's just get started.

My plan was to get as much quilting on two sections of my QAYG project before I needed to take the Jazz in for a spa day and pick up the Lyric.  I had thought "I just need to get the blocks quilted and I can join the sections together with the Lyric.  It was a solid plan.

I had invited a young quilter and her mom over to have a session of FMQ and plan for the quilting in each block of the sampler quilt.  I shared more details of the steps I used in the QAYG technique in my previous post, "Conquering New Worlds and Techniques". I am pleased with the final product and look forward to getting the other half done and join the two sections.  I'll use a QAYG method for the borders as well.

I was able to complete the "sampler block" quilting with no pressure after hearing that my repairman had fallen and was in the hospital. Little did I realize that my Jazz was in such serious need of cleaning when it started growling at me as I worked on our curtains for the camper!  

With Dave's help, we got the case open.  I was able to clean out the dust bunnies and nasty greasy clumps that were causing problems.  After a thorough cleaning, we lubed and oiled her up and she is good to go.  I'm sorry Mr. Boone... my Jazz doesn't need to visit to your spa. 

I was certain that I would lose the entire afternoon... when I was done only 1hour+ had passed.

I was happy... she was happy, my check book was happy... We celebrated with happy hour on Friday evening.  Haha.

I completed one set of curtains for the camper, and they are in place.  Shelby was excited to accompany us to the camper as we installed them.  What do you think?

We have begun the countdown for our trip to AZ... less than 3 weeks!  We don't have a firm date of departure, but after March 14th, we are free and clear of all meetings and appointments.  How soon we leave after that date depends upon how much we get packed and prepped before... we'll be watching the weather as well.

This week will look much the same (minus a trip to pick up a machine and the time to clean the other) as I finish the second set of curtains and quilt sections III and IV of Pieces of My Life.  March is just around the corner so I will also be writing the first story and finalizing the first pattern for the sew along.

I don't have a "logo" yet... Do I need one? 🤔  Have a suggestion or idea?  Leave a comment.

On to this week's Sew & Tell feature... Nancy at Grace & Peace Quilting shared a unique and special memory quilt made by her customer, Lynn.  Lynn's friend had clothing made for herself while living in Zimbabwe and asked if she would make a quilt from these garments. 

Lynn did a fabulous job making the top and Nancy did an equally fabulous job quilting it.  

Follow the link above to see some detail shots of various blocks, the quilting and the back. 😍

Time for the party to start...

Keep Piecing,


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Friday, February 23, 2024

Conquering New Worlds and Techniques

Hey, hey!  It's Friday!  The weekend is just around the corner... 

Speaking of corners... I thought this By the Yard cartoon was funny.

QAYG is a little bit of a "new world" for me to reside in this week...

I was working hard at getting a little FMQ done before I picked up my machine on Tuesday.  You see, the plan was to take my Jazz into the "spa" when I picked up my Lyric.  

I was making great progress and was even sharing my session with a young gal that is interested in learning FMQ.  She and her mom came for a visit and Q&A time.  I was happy to share some tips and suggestions with them.  This gal is 15 years old and has done quilting in 4-H for several years and has even taken to making quilts with fabrics that she purchased herself just for fun!  

We were just wrapping up "the lesson" when I got a call from the friend of the repairman telling me that he had fallen that morning and was in the hospital with a broken pelvis.  I let her know that I would be there the next morning to pick up my machine but would hold off in getting my Jazz to him.  The pressure to get 1/2 of my Pieces of My Life QAYG done was no longer relevant.

My method of QAYG is as follows:

Trim/square your quilted piece to the precise size that you need, 1/4" seam allowances included.  

Cut a sashing strip to your desired width, mine was a 2" wide strip to make a 1-1/2" finished strip, cut a second strip 1/2" wider.  Layer the 2" strip (right side up, the quilted piece (top up) and then the 2-1/2" strip (right side down).  

I am not generally a pinner... but, since it is important to have the sashing strips cut to the exact length of the quilted piece, I did use pins.

Sew your 1/4" seam through all layers.  Flip and press the strip on the back.  Pin back the wider strip to keep it from getting in the way as you add the next quilted section.  Again, pin into place and sew your 1/4" seam.

Press seams to the center of the back sashing strip, forming a channel.  Cut a piece of batting the size of the channel.  Mine was 1" wide.

I use fusible batting so I don't have a worry that it will shift or slip as I move the piece from the ironing board to the machine.

You will then press the front strip over that "channel" while folding under the excess, being careful to just cover the 1/4" seam line and not cut off any points that you may have.

Pin into place and topstitch into place.  Topstitch the opposite side as well.

I am now ready to add a FMQ twisted ribbon in the sashing strip to prevent the batting from pulling away or bunching up in the channel.

I am proud with the way it turned out and it really was easier to manage a smaller section than trying to get a large sampler quilt quilted on a domestic.  Is it a method I will use all the time?  Probably not. I like the look of the overall quilting such as a hanging diamond, lattice on point or a Baptist fan or clamshell... BUT I have had QAYG on my "bucket list" of techniques to try for nearly 5 years.  And now I can say "I have accomplished it." 

Well... almost.  I still have two more sections to quilt, sash and join all together so that I can add a border.  But I feel good about it!  Can you tell??? LOL

Have you learned a new technique lately?  
Do you have one you have put off for a while?

Never fear!  Give it a go.

What have you accomplished this week, that you are proud of?

Leave a comment... I'd love to hear from you.

Keep Piecing,


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Sunday, February 18, 2024

Scrappy Double FG ~ Sew & Tell ~ Feb 19, 2024

Welcome to this week's Sew & Tell party... where progress and projects are shared, and inspiration is found!

I have had a difficult time keeping my brain focused on one single project.  I am typically the kind of girl that sees a project through from start to finish with no problem.  I blame this challenge on an evening with friends at which more wine than I normally consume was... well consumed (and, at the time, enjoyed).  

It was simply an enjoyable time with friends as we caught up on our lives and laughed about memories... and there have been plenty of them in the 28+ years that we have been friends. 

Most evenings I will enjoy one glass of wine.  On this particular evening, I had 2!... and oh this messed with my body!  I am slowly seeing improvement by following my very strict anti-inflammatory diet very closely.  But enough of my whining... I am a lightweight... and I am okay with that. ;)

In my brain-fog/ADD mode, I have been bouncing back and forth between the computer and the studio as I wrote patterns and finished the final section (Section IV) of the non-traditional layout of Pieces of My Life quilt.  I turned to social media for suggestions on the "best" place to purchase Aurifil thread so that I would have thread (that my machine likes the best and performs best with) to begin the quilt-as-you-go step section by section.  The suggestions were very helpful, the thread purchased and delivered, and I will begin the quilting this week. YAY!

With the first six patterns fully written in a format that I want (not scribbles on a paper), I began the pattern testing step... this Pieces of My Life quilt made with purples was inspired by Amanda at
Westwood Acres Fabric, also known as @A.Crafty.Fox on Instagram.  I like purple, in general, but my stash of purples is pretty limited, but I think I will be able to make it work.  I have noticed that they can be pretty persnickety when it comes to them "playing well each other".  I have deep purples, lavenders and violets... the problem is with the violets ~ the red-violet and blue-violet, specifically, seem to clash.

I *think* that I will have to search for a very special blender or floral/calico to use as sashing strips that will tie them all together.

As I said... I was bouncing back and forth between the studio and computer... and there was a fair amount of time spent listing items on ebay... postcards, wooden spools, tobacco cans, children's blocks... all items from Mom.  Bit by bit items are being re-homed and she is one baby-step closer to a move.

But one item sent my way that received some special attention was a vintage linen piece that my Grandma, Tressie, had made.  For the years that they lived in Tucson, Grandpa had it on his dresser.  They were married in 1935 and it is believed that this was an item that she had made and placed in her hope chest.  So, it is possible that it is 90 years old.  It was in very good condition, but felt it deserved a new life.  You can read all of the details of how I made it here.  I listed it on my personal fb page, and it was sold within minutes!  Its new home will be on the antique table that belonged to the grandmother of the purchaser. 

I wish I could say that that was the end of the focus problem... but spring fever hit me on Friday as I was piecing those purple blocks.  I have been piecing on my Jazz since my Lyric has been enjoying a visit to the spa.  The view from the sewing table where the Jazz lives offers me a view of Dave's shop and our 5th-wheel.  The temperatures were near 60 degrees and my wanderlust kicked in.  We are about a month away from a trip to Arizona, and we haven't traveled/camped anywhere since early November.  

That was when I decided that now was the time to begin new curtains for the "living area" of the trailer.  I printed the FPP patterns for the double flying geese strips, pulled out my scrap bin and went to town!  I have the 2 small sections completed and ready to make curtains, and 1/2 of one long set.  I'll be making the curtains quilted because the existing curtains are so thin, and I get chilly as I sit there during my morning devotion time reading and enjoying a cup of chai tea.  I want the curtains to offer a little bit of insulation from that chill.  

It will be a good thing for me to get the Lyric back this week and not be caught daydreaming as I stare out the window. 😉 

It is now time for the randomly selected featured share.  This week it is Danette from Nettie Sews & Lucky Quilts. This is her first time joining Sew & Tell and she brought a divided basket that she made from some fat quarters that has been in her stash for a fair amount of time.  I really like the fabrics and that basket could be used for many things.  She shared the links for the pattern too.  Head over to her blog to check it out.  Well done, Danette!  Thanks for joining us.  👏

This week I need to spend a little time writing up a short bio and brief description of three quilts that will be on display at our local library.  They have an "artists wall" that features a new local artist each month.  Since March is National Quilting Month and World-wide Quilting Day is March 16th, I asked if it was possible to celebrate with the library by having three of my "story" quilts on display.  

The three quilts are all related to local history as well, telling the stories of WWII German POWs that wrote to my paternal grandparents, Phillip and Katie Schleich, after they returned home; Marion Russell's life and travels on the Santa Fe Trail and my maternal grandparents, Forrest & Tressie Teegarden, who grew up, met, married and lived in Trinidad ~ The Pieces From the Past, Pieces of the Santa Fe Trail and Pieces in the Garden.  I feel honored that my request was accepted and hope that their being on display will inspire local quilters in some way.

Will you be celebrating Worldwide Quilting Day this year?  
What are your plans?

Leave a comment... I'd love to hear from you!

Keep Piecing,


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Wednesday, February 14, 2024

Vintage Linen Finds New Life

As my Mom continues to downsize, I continue to receive items that are "just too good to go to a thrift store."

Besides the postcard collection that I am still sifting through, I have been given a few tobacco cans (these will soon be listed on ebay), wooden spools (these found a new home quickly, just in time for Valentines Day) and antique and vintage children's blocks.  I was also handed a vintage linen piece that Tressie (from the Pieces in the Garden sew along) made.

I loved the color and the simple design and knew immediately that I wanted to quilt it.  But how was I to do that with the curved edge without covering it up?  As is typical, I woke early one day knowing exactly how it was to be done. My mind almost immediately turns to quilting designs and ideas as I wake up. (Am I the only one this happens to?)

Since I had completed all of the blocks for my new sew along, Pieces of My Life, I was clearing away all of the blue fabrics and placing them back in my stash closet, my eyes fell on a piece of batik backing fabric that I had purchased in a clearance sale from Connecting Threads.  It was the perfect choice to accompany the linen piece.

Using fusible batting, I cut a piece to the exact size I needed with plans to have about 1-1/2 inches all around.  

Next, I cut the backing large enough for it to fold over to the front to create a "self-binding" and a mitered corner look.  

I then placed the linen piece on top of it, trying to center it as best I could.  I fused the piece into place and then used a few pins along the edges since it was over the fabric and could not be fused.  
Using a hanging star quilt design in a matching thread, I stitched down the edges and then quilted the lines 1-1/2 inches apart.  

Before long, I had a completed piece!  I took another quilt that I use each evening and tossed both into the washer for a quick swish, transferred them both to the dryer and by dinner time, I had a beautiful new table runner.  The 80% cotton batting offers a beautiful, soft, crinkly look that just invites a touch from the hand.

One of my most favorite custom quilts was made in 2017 using a vintage embroidered tablecloth ~ You can follow the link to see the pictures and read the story at "The Heart of the Home."  This table runner gives me the same feels... I imagine it being placed at the center of a table for a Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner... or perhaps, because of the pastel color, it was brought out to grace the table for an Easter dinner.

I have another box of "stuff" sitting under one of my sewing tables with similar pieces that I may have to explore... or just wait for Mom to find more for me. LOL!

I find projects like this create unique heirloom pieces that help to preserve the memories of loved ones.  

Have you ever "upcycled" vintage linen?

Leave a comment... I'd love to hear what you have done (or hope to make).

Keep Piecing,


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Sunday, February 11, 2024

Sew & Tell ~ February 2/12/2024

Welcome to this week's edition of Sew & Tell!

It is Valentine's week and I spent one day last week making some corny cards for the grandkids... microwave popcorn included with each punchline.  You can see them on the Feeling A Little Corny story.

I spent a fair amount of time piecing the final blocks for my newest sew along event... I've been referring to it as The Bride's Quilt II... however, after allowing the concept of including questions for the participants to answer and create their own story quilt to "ferment", I am settled on calling it "Pieces of My Life"

With this name it falls right into place with my previous sew alongs ~ Pieces from the Past, Pieces of the Santa Fe Trail and Pieces in the Garden.  💖  Had Dave been in the house when I had the revelation, he probably would have thought I'd gone a little bonkers, given the fact that I was dancing and whooping. LOL.

And then I saw this on Moda Fabric's Instagram...

The responses were clever and hilarious!  

At the moment I came up with the idea of the name, it would have been "I'm so excited... and I just can't hide it..."

What would your theme song be?

Be sure to leave a comment before you go!

Also, before you go... It is time to take a look at our weekly showcase share.  Cheree at Morning Latte showed off some beautiful scrappy stars...  These little guys finish at just 4" each and the plan she has for the layout (if I understood correctly) will require 80.  

I included stars like these at the same size in my Pieces in the Garden quilt and needed only 12 for the row... I may have adult ADD but feel I would struggle to accomplish the task she has before her.  I would need to break it up with spreading the piecing of them out... like and leader/ender project... or set aside a few hours right after lunch to do just them and then turn my attention to something else.  Is anyone else in the same boat as me?

This week I'll be turning my attention to the pattern writing portion of the sew along.  I have selected the questions to accompany each block and *I think* I have them in an order that makes sense and a relation to each block/name.  I will have the chance to double check all of that and the patterns when I make the blocks for a second quilt with a traditional layout.

Time's ticking away so I better go.  Feel free to join the Sew & Tell party!  Invite your friends too.  The more, the merrier.

Keep Piecing,


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Tuesday, February 6, 2024

Feeling a Little Corny

I have had this corn on the cob fabric in my stash for years!  It was something I acquired from a gentleman at church after his wife and then mother passed away.  It was a large collection of fabrics that filled the entire back of our jeep.

I sorted through and set aside all cotton/quilting fabrics.  And then continued sorting by fabrics that I could use for other projects (like skirts and dresses for OCC) and other stuff that I just did not want to keep.  (I simply did not have room to store it.)  I invited a friend to come take a look as well.  She left with several arms full of fabrics and notions.

The remainder of the stuff that I could not use was donated to the community theatre for their use.  They were thrilled with the donation and offered us some free tickets for an upcoming performance.

In December we had purchased a box of microwave popcorn for when the girls stayed with us over New Years.  Rather than let it sit and get old, I 
thought it would be fun to make some cards for the grands.  Since Valentines Day just around the corner, I saw this as a perfect opportunity to create some pretty corny, quilted cards for them. 

I enlisted help from friends on fb and insta to come up with the sayings...  

What would you have suggested for the cards?

I have several yards of the fabric left... 
I'll likely just keep it on hand for more cards but it would make a good tablecloth or quilt for a picnic... 

What's your best corny suggestion?

Leave a comment... I'd love to hear from you.

Gotta have this fabric?  Send me an email... we can make a deal!

Keep Piecing,


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Sunday, February 4, 2024

Sew & Tell ~ February 5, 2024

The first page of the 2024 calendar has been turned, the groundhog did not see his shadow and time marches on...  Amy Grant has a song about this topic - Our Time is Now

January, February, March,
The days are marching forward
April, May, June and July
They fly like a hummingbird
August, September, October
The year is almost over
November, December arrive
Another year, come and gone

Time is illusion
Time is a curse
Time is all these things and worse
But our time is now, ohhhhh
Yes, our time is now, ohhhhh
Let us sing before our time runs out.

Time didn't really run out in the studio this week but as the days ticked by... oh wait, that ticking I heard was really my machine.  I am way late with a regular service cleaning and tune up (I am embarrassed to admit that it should have been last fall)... I have decided that it is vital for me to get it into the shop very soon.  The only thing is... I'm not sure when that might happen.  

The shop I rely upon is located 90 miles from me.  In order to just drop off, it is a 1/2 day trip.  And since you are driving such a distance, you take advantage of the opportunity to run errands to stores that are not available locally...  It truly ends up taking an entire day. 

In the meantime, I will utilize my Babylock Jazz for any immediate piecing that I may need to do.  I'll continue to piece the blocks for the Bride's Quilt II.  All of the various components for the sew along are coming together, bit by bit.  I have the questions selected, all of the blocks have been chosen as well and nearly 3/4 of them have been pieced.  I shared a sneaky-peeky last week... did you see it?

This is 1/4 of the non-traditional layout which I will be using a Quilt-As-You-Go method for finishing it.  

I'll have a little more time to finalize the patterns while my machine is enjoying its spa day and then I will "test" them as I piece blocks for a purple/lavender traditional sampler quilt. 

Tentatively, I am looking at a kickoff of the sew along at the beginning of March, with patterns to be released every two weeks... taking us to nearly the end of the year.

Along with that sneaky-peeky I gave of the BQII, I offered an update to my slow-stitch paper embroidery.  Since my machine is needing a spa day, I decided on Friday afternoon that I would devote a good portion of my weekend to this piece of artwork.  Here's what I have done so far... 

Dave had asked me. 
"what are you going to do with it when you are done?"  

Why do we have to have an answer to such a question???  

Sometimes a project just satisfies the "create drive" that we all have.

Rarely does an avid reader get questioned of how much time they spend reading... or if they could have been doing something more productive... 

Sometimes that "need to create" or try something new is a way of escaping... no different than reading a novel for the shear enjoyment of getting lost in "another world."

I have had an opportunity to escape into the past as I have had a fair amount of time devoted to the sorting and selling of a large postcard collection that spanned multiple generations too... 

(Yes, Mom continues clearing out the various collections that she has or inherited.)

There are postcards from early 1900s through 2000.  What a job.  I found postcards I wrote to my parents when I visited Chicagoland for the first time with Dave to meet his family.  I found cards sent to my mom while she was away at school for the short time that she went... I found cards sent from my Grandpa to my Grandma when he traveled for work... It was sort of family history lesson and trip down memory lane.  

I have sorted out the antique (99+ years old) "greeting cards", vintage cards 50+ years old), local, Colorado, international, and National Parks cards and the rest have gone into "General."  I am considering breaking the general collection down into more categories such as birds, animals, cactus and states... Only time will tell.

It is now time to take a look at this week's feature quilter... Donna at DonnaLeeQ has been busy organizing and in doing so found several quick to finish projects.  

What a fun way to escape!

Time for you share your projects... but before you go,

Leave a comment that tells me one of your favorite ways to escape.

Keep Piecing,


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