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Tuesday, August 31, 2021

To-Do Tuesday, August Color Challenge, And An Announcement!

From the front: Granddaughter #2, DIL, Papaw/Hubby, Granddaughter #1, Grandson #1,
Grandson #2 on Son's lap, me, Daughter, and Granddaughter #3.

Whew that was a fast week! Our kids have come and gone and it was just a blur of laughing and talking and eating. The sleeping situation was not the best, but they are a kind and tolerant bunch - lol! Because our guest rooms have become my sewing room and my husband's office, everyone was bedded down in our living room on the recliner sofas and an air mattress. Turns out the sofa recliners aren't the best sleeping options (although we fall asleep on them regularly - ha!), so we will get another air mattress for their Christmas visit!

If you have a second, watch this video of Everett with his contagious belly laugh
while playing with cousin Brandon!

Laney loves the quilt I made for her (quilt details right here)

As far as sewing? Not much got done, but that's OK! Here was my list last week:
1. Work on piecing a backing for Exploding Heart - No Progress
2. Start on Welcome Autumn cross stitch - No Progress. I did get this lighted magnifier from Joann to help me see the 28ct squares!
3. Continue to big-stitch on RBD quilt - No Progress. While at Joann's I got this lap frame to give me better access to each block.
4. Continue to stitch and piece on Christmas project - No Progress
5. Continue to make Dash-Along blocks - No Progress

Mushroom blocks for August Color Challenge

Here is what I did get done. Each month Jen at Patterns by Jen hosts a color challenge, and 2021 is based on colors of fruits and veggies. The color for August drew inspiration from "mushrooms", and with that I got to rifle through my brown and tan scraps. I am really enjoying Jen's patterns, and this one was easy. Each month a free pattern is offered with instructions for 6-inch and 12-inch included. I made the 6-inch size yesterday and was only going to make one, but it was so cute I had to make another one!

See more "mushroom" blocks right here at Patterns by Jen.

My goals are simply the same as last week, and I should be able to make some progress. I have included time for a Squirrel-spiration, and more on that later! Hint: think "fall" and "plaidish". 😉

This week you can find more inspiration for To-Do Tuesday right here at the blog of Chris at Chris Knits. After today, Chris will be stepping down as host of To-Do Tuesday and I will try very hard to fill her awesome shoes. She has been a wonderful host -  funny and kind and supportive - and we will all miss her. Thank you so much Chris!

Be sure to check back here at Texas Quilt Gal next Tuesday for the first September To-Do Tuesday!
Tuesday, August 24, 2021

To-Do Tuesday

My first Wensleydale block from Jen Kingwell's Quilt Recipes

I'm joining other bloggers for To-Do Tuesday, an event hosted by Chris at Chris Knits. This linkup is open to those who want to keep track of goals and cheer on the accomplishments of others. Let's see what has happened in my little sewing room in north Texas since last Tuesday. 

Jack says "Welcome to my playroom!"

Rosie says the jury is still out on the new arrangement

After trying my new room arrangement (brought about by the installation of Longmire) for a couple weeks, I decided to change things up a bit. My desk and sewing machine traded spaces, so now the Janome is next to the window - much more light for sewing and no glare when I try to see the laptop. I had my husband sell the printer that occupied space on my desk (now I just use his printer), so that created more space on my desk for things that make me happy. The kitties miss their desk lounging space, but I like it just fine!

My DIY hubby has been trying out a new laser engraver and I'm happy to be the recipient of his experiments!

Here are a few of the DashAlong blocks

Big stitch (with a few cat hairs thrown in)

My goals for last week:
☑ 1. DashAlong blocks - PROGRESS - I chain-pieced 6 more blocks
☑ 2. Embroider and piece blocks for Christmas project - PROGRESS - I am slowly embroidering (almost finished the first one!), and I pieced two more blocks. This one is FUN!
☑ 3. Big stitch experiment on RBD quilt - DONE - I am using Sulky 12wt in Gold, and I love the thread and the big-stitch effect. This will be a slow project, but I will certainly enjoy it.
☑ 4. Piece a backing for Exploding Heart - PROGRESS - I did pick fabrics for piecing!
5. Start on Welcome Autumn cross stitch if fabric arrives - NO PROGRESS - The Lambswool 28ct linen from Fat Quarter Shop did arrive and is so beautiful, but I am finding it difficult to see the little squares. I purchased this hands-free magnifier  and will pick it up this week at Joann's. I'm really hoping it helps.
☑ 6. Make a Wensleydale block - DONE - The templates I made from craft acrylic are so thin it was hard to accurately cut the fabric, so my block is a bit skewed. But I love the block! I have decided to purchase the acrylic template set, and my LQS has promised to call as soon as they receive them from Jen Kingwell.

My list for the coming week:
1. Work on piecing a backing for Exploding Heart
2. Start on Welcome Autumn cross stitch
3. Continue to big-stitch on RBD quilt
4. Continue to stitch and piece on Christmas project
5. Continue to make Dash-Along blocks

Our son and family are scheduled to come on Friday night for the weekend, but now we are waiting to see if our DIL has Covid! We were hoping to have all of our children and grandchildren together for the first time since last August. If Susan tests positive, this will be the third time Covid has postponed their trip north. 😞

UPDATE: Susan's test was NEGATIVE! As long as she feels like traveling Friday, they will be here - yay!

It is always fun to see and be inspired by new and on-going projects, so be sure to check out posts by other bloggers right here!

Friday, August 20, 2021

Hearts In Formation Quilt


My quilt model coordinated his shoes with the quilt!

Last February I saw a logo on Instagram for "Adopt Don't Shop", I immediately thought it would make a neat quilt! I already had projects in various stages of incompletion but well, you know what happened.

I had some beautiful pink fabric from Bernie's Needle and Foot Etsy shop just waiting to be used, along with my much loved Decostitch in granite. I found a pattern to make hearts from Allison at Cluck Cluck Sew and away I went!

Here is the original logo

Allison's pattern has measurements for several sizes of hearts, and I chose the 6-1/2 inch size for the front and one 10-inch for the back. I had a completed quilt size in mind, so I calculated spacing, row length and height, and blank space and made up my own pattern, using the Adopt, Don't Shop logo as a guide.

It was so hard for me to get a good representative photo of the back. It is lighter than it looks here.

This quilt officially qualifies for a "Mullet" quilt - business in the front, party in the back. I added a 10-inch heart to the back and pieced some coordinating fabric from my stash. I used the same granite Decostitch for the binding. For the first time in my quilting career, I somehow miscalculated the length needed for binding and ran out with about 2 feet left to bind! I had to wait for an order of Decostitch before I could finish.

I used one of the applique stitches on my Janome to outline the hearts in light gray, then filled in the rest with freehand hearts on the Simply Sixteen with bright pink thread. Some of the freehand hearts look like leaves and some are too fat, but since this is my first time quilting on the Simply Sixteen, it's all good!

The lineup of the hearts remind me of a marching band formation, so "Hearts in Formation"!

Crinkly goodness

This quilt passed Toby's careful quality control inspection, so I will be gifting it to my sweet 5 year-old granddaughter Delaney. I'll try to update with a photo when she receives it!

Quilt Details

Finished sizeL 43-1/2" x 47"
Finished size laundered - 43" x 45"

My design using Adopt, Don't Shop logo
Simple Hearts by Cluck Cluck Sew for individual hearts

Boho Bouquet by Hope Yoder for Blank Quilting
French Farmhouse Gray Check by Renee Nanneman of Need'l Love for Andover
Decostitch Elements in Granite by Art Gallery

Cupcake Cafe by Laura Stone for Studio E
Dotsy Grey/Red by Jennifer Pugh for Wilmington Prints Essentials 

Decostitch Elements in Granite by Art Gallery

Superior Threads So Fine
Genoa Gray 50wt #403
Jazzy Jai 30wt #1112

I'm linking to Finished or Not Friday, hosted by the lovely Alycia of Alycia at Quiltygirl!
Tuesday, August 17, 2021

To-Do Tuesday - Meet Longmire!

Meet the newest addition to my sewing room - Longmire. My husband suggested we name it after one of our favorite TV shows - a modern Western about a Wyoming sheriff named Walt Longmire - because it includes the name "long" for long arm! Believe it or not I agreed, so Longmire it is.

With a throat size of 16" the Simply Sixteen would technically be classified as mid arm, but it is commonly referred to as longarm.

Lynn and Lyssa (photo capture from their website)

Lynn, the shop owner of Stitched With Love in McKinney TX (where we purchased Longmire), and her daughter Lyssa made the 100 mile+ round trip to our house last Tuesday. They quickly examined everything and complimented my handyman for putting it all together so well. The table did need leveling, and we had placed two screws in the wrong place. So while Lyssa worked underneath the frame making adjustments, Lynn started training me on basic operation and a few tricks and tips. Time passed so quickly!

After I practiced awhile, I pulled a small quilt that I started in February and finished quilting it. This is a quilt that will forever be identifiable as my practice quilt - lol! As I sewed the binding on yesterday, I actually ran out of binding - what??? That is the first time in my quilting career that has happened! I had to order another yard of fabric and will finish up when it arrives. I'll share more about it in a later post.

IN OTHER NEWS! Our youngest granddaughter started kindergarten this past week!

Here are the templates I made this past week for the Wensleydale quilt from Jen Kingwell's Quilt Recipes. Now to choose some fabric and make a block. See the cookies below that I made from one of her recipes.

Delicious Oatmeal Raisin Cookies from Quilt Recipes! I made mine without raisins
but added them for my husband. We thought they were outstanding!

So today is To-Do Tuesday, hosted by the amazing Chris over at Chris Knits, and here were my goals for last week:
☑1. Training and practice on longarm - DONE - yay!
2. DashAlong blocks - NO PROGRESS
3. Embroidery and pieced blocks for Christmas project - NO PROGRESS
☑4. Big stitch experiment on RBD quilt - SOME PROGRESS - I did make a few big stitches and will do more tonight.

Goals for the coming week will be carryover from last week plus a few other projects:
1. DashAlong blocks
2. Embroider and piece blocks for Christmas project
3Big stitch experiment on RBD quilt
4. Piece a backing for Exploding Heart
5. Start on Welcome Autumn cross stitch if fabric arrives
6. Make a Wensleydale block

Be sure to check out the inspiration of other bloggers and their To-Do Tuesday posts right here!

Tuesday, August 10, 2021

To-Do Tuesday

Rain everywhere but here!

Was yours a fast week too? It was a hot and dry one here. Earlier this week there were showers surrounding us but nary a drop here.

Stopped by my nearest LQS (local quilt shop) Quilt Asylum for the first time since we moved. It's a really cute little place in the middle of a small town about 20 miles southwest of us. Picked up my copy of Jen Kingwell's Quilt Recipes (along with a few other goodies) and have been savoring it for several days. I saved shipping by buying it local!

That's my handyman working hard to put the quilting frame together

Toby is inspecting the frame from below to make sure we did it right

So this happened this past week. The boxes from Handi Quilter were delivered, and I called the store owner to let her know so we could schedule setup and training. They will do it all, but she said if we wanted to, we could go ahead and set it all up and then they could spend the bulk of the time training me. So yeah we did that! She said they will check everything when they arrive to make sure all is in place, then we can spend all the time I need to learn how to use this lovely new toy. They are coming this afternoon at 3:00!

Of course Toby had to give it a go!

Here is how I did on my goals last week:
1. Try big stitch on at least one block of the RBD quilt - NO PROGRESS
✔2. Sew rows together on Exploding Heart - DONE!
3. Continue sewing on DashAlong - NO PROGRESS
4. Continue making embroidery and pieced blocks for Christmas project - NO PROGRESS - not even any embroidery. I was just a zombie watching crime shows at night.
✔5. Leave a little time for Squirrel-spiration - ALWAYS! No actual projects but setting up the longarm took a chunk of time.

Here is what I have in mind for the coming week:
1. Training and practice on longarm
2. DashAlong blocks
3. Embroidery and pieced blocks for Christmas project
4. Big stitch experiment on RBD quilt

Today is To-Do Tuesday, and I will be linking up with other bloggers at Chris Knits to see everyone's progress on their goals from last week. You can find that link right here.

Tuesday, August 3, 2021

To-Do Tuesday - It's "Ugh-gust"!

This Welcome Autumn cross stitch by Drawn Threads should get me in the mood for Fall

Not only is it already Tuesday, but it is also August - how did that happen? "Ugh-gust" is my least favorite month but this year I'm going to declare it "early fall" so it will be more tolerable and remind me that fall is coming . . . someday.

DashAlong is coming along - 12 blocks done and only 18 more to go!

Here's how I did on the goals I set for To-Do Tuesday lsst week:
1. Start quilting individual blocks on RBD Challenge quilt - NO PROGRESS. I'm still toying with the big stitch hand quilting idea but have not actually tried it
✔2. Finish blocks for Exploding Heart quilt and do layout on design wall - DONE and posted here on Instagram. I sewed the blocks together and now have 18 rows of 18 blocks ready to sew together.
✔3. Sew blocks for DashAlong - PROGRESS - I made a few more churn dash blocks (see photo above)
✔4. Make time for Mr. Squirrel - DONE - this is the album quilt I posted about here, so it officially changed from "squirrel" to "Christmas project".

Exploding Heart rows numbered and waiting their turn to be sewn together

For the coming week:
1. Try big stitch on at least one block of the RBD quilt
2. Sew rows together on Exploding Heart
3. Continue sewing on DashAlong
4. Continue making embroidery and pieced blocks for Christmas project
5. Leave a little time for Squirrel-spiration.

My new Simply Sixteen will be delivered this week! Setup and training have yet to be scheduled so actual quilting will not be happening anytime soon. I will have at least one finish to practice on though!

The linkup today is with right here at Melva Loves Scraps. Thanks for accepting the torch this week Melva!