Saturday, April 21, 2018

Scrappy Saturday

Rainbow Scrap Challenge

Dashing off a quick post before we start painting today -- 
finishing up on the places that were not accessible when the painters were at House 1 in December.

To occupy my mind while Mr. Hillside was making the round trip to Nashville and back to house 2 in the snowy weather on Monday, I made a Squared Away block in April's RSC colors yellow and gold.

Squared Away Block 4
I am making these monthly blocks in jewel tones of the RSC color.  I think this rich yellow fits that theme.  I didn't get any further with my other yellow project, though.

Loosey Goosey
I've had several people ask about the source of this pattern.  It is not a "pattern" per se, but, rather, a technique than can be incorporated into quilts in a number of ways.  I used it initially as a border on a round-robin quilt challenge last year.

Cindy Williams, The Math Whisperer, has come up with an easy, two-at-a-time technique in various sizes.  It is in this book which also includes several other quick and easy techniques. 

The best thing is she has done all the math for you.  The book is self-published, not available on Amazon unfortunately.  I will research further to see if I can find a source or a way to contact her directly.

Have a Scrap Happy Saturday, y'all!  And be sure to stop by soscrappy for lots of yellow goodness.

Monday, April 16, 2018

Catching up

Life in Between

There was a lot going on last week and I feel like I have left a few things dangling on the blog. It's time to catch up.

The Class on Thursday with Yvonne Fuchs/Quilting Jetgirl was a half-day workshop focusing mostly on value (light/medium/dark) and fabric selection.

Yvonne Fuchs
Even with all my cutting done before the class, I didn't accomplish very much.  The pattern, Wayward Transparency, is not difficult -- just half-square triangles, squares, and rectangles -- but the block assembly requires a lot of attention to position and I managed to get several HSTs turned the wrong way.  I'm sure that's never happened to you (wink-wink).

Beginning of Wayward Transparency
Even with HSTs misplaced, at least you can get an idea of the 3 shades of fuchsia I am working with.  The class was at a small shop near Cookeville, about 1.5 hours from Nashville.  Since I couldn't drive myself, a fellow guild member provided transportation and we had a delightful time getting to know each other better during the commute.

The Ankle is not totally out of confinement yet.

Ankle Brace
On Friday the doctor told me to ditch the walker and start putting my full weight on the booted foot for 10 days.  (Frankly, I was already doing that most of the time around the house.)  Then next Sunday I graduate to the ankle brace.  I'm hoping the follow-up visit with Orthodoc on May 4 will be the last!

The New House.  Mr. Hillside and I continue to split our time between House 1 (current permanent address) and House 2 (future permanent home, a/k/a the lake house or house at the Glade).  I realize I'm not always clear where I am when I post here on the blog and I apologize.  Soon after I'm released from the doctor, we will make the new house our permanent abode.  Or as permanent as it can be with limited furnishings ...

Each time we make the 2-hour drive to House 2 we bring a van load of stuff from House 1 in an attempt to declutter it enough to put it on the market.  So far we have moved 90% of our studios and about half the kitchen.  Even with the best planning it seems there is always something we want or need at "the other house"!

We drove up Friday afternoon in order to avoid the severe storms that were predicted to come across the state on Saturday.  Nashville was spared, but Son-2's family in Arkansas was right in the path of the storm so it was a tense night.  I hope my readers were spared from all the wild weather on Friday and Saturday.

On Saturday DH unloaded the van before the storms rolled into East TN and then he treated me to a birthday dinner at one of the Glade's two community club restaurants.  On Sunday Son-1 and wife took us to lunch at the other club restaurant.  They had spent the weekend visiting several state parks in East TN.

DH and I spent much of Sunday assembling a rolling kitchen island.

You know, a big kitchen is nice, but when you have to cross the great divide to get freshly chopped vegetables over to the stove or need to find a landing zone for groceries to go in the fridge, an island is nicer.  My birthday gift from my Main Man!

The weather. What's up with this?

Scene at House 2 this morning
Fortunately the snow showers have stopped and most of the accumulation has melted.  DH drove back to Nashville this morning to pick up another load.  Temps will be below freezing by the time he gets back and there are several big hills between the highway and the lake ...

Are you as ready for Spring as I am?

Thursday, April 12, 2018

An Exciting Day

On many levels

First, I'm getting out of the house with a friend!

Second, we're going to a quilting class with Yvonne, the Quilting Jetgirl!

We will be learning about building transparency into our quilts.  The class is Wayward Transparency.

photo from Quilting Jetgirl blog site
I will be working on a mini in shades of fuscia.  Stay tuned!

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Wildlife Wednesday

Rear Window

I feel kinda like Jimmy Stewart in Rear Window -- stuck with a broken foot, watching the world through my kitchen window.

Well, it's been an active wildlife day.  Unfortunately, it's hard to capture them on a smart phone when they are naturally camouflaged.

First to visit in the early afternoon was a huge owl.

Look in the middle of the photo on the horizontal branch, above the green bush ...

Later in the afternoon we were visited by a wild turkey wandering up through the neighbor's yard.

These creatures are SO big they actually make noise walking through the leaves.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Cabin Fever

Five Weeks ...

... five long weeks ago today I headed down the slippery slope to the lake at House 2 and broke my ankle.
THE slippery rock
I am truly grateful that it was not more serious (could have broken a hip, could have slid into the lake), and I'm thankful for the caring treatment I received at Cumberland County Medical Center.  Nevertheless, I feel like I've been in house arrest ever since.

The first few days while we were still at the lake I was in a temporary splint and supposed to walk with those crutches you can see in this photo.

Temporary splint
I never did master those crutches!  Thankfully we had taken my tractor seat up with us to go with a temporary sewing table setup.

This turned out to be both a blessing and a curse.  In those first couple of days, when I was sleeping on the sofa that came with the house, I was able to zip down and up the hall to the bathroom in the dark of night.

After the first visit to an orthopaedic specalist, I was put in a boot and given a walker, with instructions to keep weight off the foot, to sleep in the boot, and only remove it for bathing.

That's when we had the great idea to put the tractor seat in the big walk-in shower at House 2 so that I could reach the hand-held wand and the controls.  The first time it worked like a dream.  The second time I managed to slip off the seat, scrape my butt, and land on my tail with all my dignity out the window.

I know, that's TMI so I'll spare you the picture of my bruise; but I feel it's my public duty to warn you of the hazards of a tractor seat in the shower!  Back at House 1, I am using a teak bench in the shower.

At least it can't roll out from under my soapy behind!  After two weeks I was allowed to remove the boot for sleeping and instructed to put more weight on that foot with the boot on.

I may have taken that too literally as recently I have been toddling around the house without the walker.  My theory is, if it doesn't hurt, then it's not hurting me.  Yep, that's my theory and I'm sticking to it!

We've been back to the lake house twice since the accident.  I have been to the doctor twice, the grocery once. church once, longarm quilter once.   In five weeks!  Talk about cabin fever!

So I go back to the orthodoc on Friday.  Does anyone want to lay odds on whether I'm released to drive?

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Rainbow Scrap Challenge Progress

Yellow and Gold for April

So glad I had the presence of mind to bring one of my RSC18 projects home with me last Sunday.  I managed to get all the geese made for Loosey Goosey early last week.

And I started assembly yesterday.

I have also spent time working on That Purple Project which, quite appropriately, is more yellow than purple.

I still need to pull scraps for the Squared Away RSC18 Sampler block.  Since I've been making those blocks in jewel tones, I want to peruse my yellow scrap box for something that can qualify as "jewel" tone ... not particularly easy with yellow.  Maybe topaz? Or citrine?

Linking with Angela/soscrappy and Cynthia/Quilting is More Fun than Housework.

Friday, April 6, 2018

Panic Averted

Can you believe a quilter without needle or thread?  That was me at the beginning of the day on Thursday with all my many handwork kits already moved to the lake house.

My first concern was having a color of thread that I could use when turning the binding on That Purple Project.

That Purple Project
In the end I decided that a yellowish beige was the safest choice because it would blend with the borders of the pieced side in the event I had stitches go through to the front.

I have a bobbin filled with that color so first crisis averted.  My box of Wonder Clips was in absentia, also, but I have plenty of sturdy pins so I could manage with them to hold the binding over the edge.

Now for a needle.  A needle.  Any needle.  All I could find buried in my tool box (which I have been meticulously insisting come with us as we go back and forth between houses):

It feels like I'm using a telephone pole after working with betweens!  At least the eye is big enough for me to thread without assistance...  Note to self: add handwork tools to all machine tool boxes.

Thursday, April 5, 2018

A Little Progress is a Good Thing

No matter how small, some progress means the project is moving along ... right?  And anything I can do while standing or sitting in one place saves me from dragging that 100-pound boot all over the house.

So yesterday I stood at the end of the kitchen table and, by moving the quilts instead of myself, I managed to trim both quilts that came home from the LAQ on Monday.

Trimmings on top of Watermelon Stars
Then I sat at the end of the kitchen table and stitched the binding onto That Purple Project.

Binding on That Purple Project
My options for thread to do the handwork are somewhat limited to some very basic neutral colors; I'm going to try dark gray before I make Mr. Hillside take me shopping!

Monday, April 2, 2018

Back from the LAQ

And One Monthly Goal

Since I still can't drive, Mr. Hillside and I ventured out together today to run a few errands -- returning a cable box, repairing my glasses and, most importantly, picking up two quilts from my long-arm quilter.  Both quilts were an effort to finish up UFOs that included the Rainbow Scrap Challenge color of the month in 2016.

Ohio Watermelon Stars
That Purple Project
I have plans to give one of these quilts to a lucky recipient at the church women's breakfast this month.  Here's my dilemma:  my stash has been entirely relocated to the house in the Glade and the breakfast will be before our return.  What's a girl to use for binding?  Hmm ...

On the bright side, I did remember to bring yellow scraps home to work on my column of Loosey Goosey for RSC2018.  But none of these scraps were big enough to cut sufficient binding.

The Geese are Loose
Also, in anticipation of an upcoming class with Yvonne Fuchs/Quilting Jetgirl, I brought home a box of several fabric options to use in the class.   So, what do you think?

Possible binding for That Purple Project
I think it is perfect for an already scrappy quilt.  And I'm going with it.  Now to find a place to trim the quilt ... I have the tools to cut here as well as a machine (or 2) for stitching.  Stay tuned to see if I get this done by April 14.  In fact, I'll make that my One Monthly Goal (OMG) for April!

Linking with Patty at Elm Creek Quilts to declare my OMG for April.

Friday, March 30, 2018

Magical Mystery Bonus Block

One last opportunity

I was so blown away by some of the options y'all came up with that I almost forgot I had promised a bonus block!

This block comes to you by way of Miss Rosie's Quilt Company.  The pattern is True Blue.

Can you see the similarities?  In this case there is just one block that is rotated to create the secondary pattern.  Like our mystery, you can start with two fat quarters and use the same cutting diagram.

Make the large triangle squares (Clue 3) and the small triangle squares (Clue 4) only and assemble like a 9-patch.

As in our Magical Mystery, be sure to pay close attention to the orientation of your triangle squares.

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Wildlife Wednesday

Life at the Lake

Wood Ducks crossing the lake in a headwind
I wish I could capture a picture of the bird that sits on our chimney and welcomes each morning.  I think it's a robin, but since it remains out of sight, I caught these wood ducks forging across the lake into a headwind this morning.  They took turns in the lead to give the other a break.

And since some of you asked, there has been some progress in the sewing room.

The layout table awaits the work surface -- it's here somewhere, I have been assured ...

Project boxes
Don't be fooled by the apparent organization, though ...

Cutting table
The cutting table awaits its shelf on the "church" table and the top that leans against its side.  And then there are the boxes waiting to discharge their contents ...

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Magical Mystery

In Transit

I tell y'all, this operating from two abodes is not easy.  Which is my way of saying I don't have much to say because the laptop got packed early and it has the only photo I can find of my finished quilt.

So here it is, with no borders and crappy lighting.

This is the barn raising setting, off center.  What I really want you to see is the variety of fabrics. For some reason I collected a bunch of fat quarters in this burnt orange color -- I don't think they were from a "collection" or "line," just a similar color.  The lights are all shades of beige, some a bit darker than others.  I just tried to balance the placement.

I hope you can see how easy it would be to make a group quilt using this block by specifying two colors, one light and one dark.  Each step along the way lends itself to trimming to a standard size, as well as the final blocks because, as you well know, no one's 1/4 inch is the same as yours!

The bonus block will have to wait for a day.

We're up at the Glade for the week.  I'm hobbling around as much as I can with the boot, trying to exercise the foot when the boot is off.  Now that I can put weight on the foot, I should be able to go down to the new studio and help Mr. Hillside (now Mr. Lakeside) put things away.

Blessings to all for this Holy Week.

Monday, March 26, 2018

Magical Mystery - The Big Reveal

Related image
The mystery:  
How two different blocks can be made from the same pieces.

The magic:
The multitude of setting options.

The Bonus:
A third block.
Actually, youall came up with a lot more!

I hope those who played along have enjoyed the exercise.  It was fun to see your guesses along the way.  A couple of you were close in expecting there to be positive and negative results.  So without further ado ... ta-dah:


Each block is constructed from four units:  Two rail units, one large triangle square, and one 4-patch unit.  Pay close attention to the orientation of the triangle squares. Assemble like a 4-patch, sewing a rail unit to the 4-patch unit and the large triangle square to a rail unit. Press toward the rail units. Spin the final seam (or press open).

Block A

Block A
For Block A be sure to use the rail units that are pressed toward the light fabric.  If you spun the seams in Clue 5 as recommended, these rail units should nest with the 4-patch seams.  And just like the construction of the 4-patch units, as a double-check, you should never be sewing the same fabric together.

Block B:

Block B
Again, pay close attention to the orientation of the triangle squares. Assemble like a 4-patch, sewing a rail unit to the 4-patch unit and the large triangle square to a rail unit. Press toward the rail units.  Spin the final seam.

Why spin the seams?  When you spin the seams of a 4-patch construction, you can orient your block in any direction and it will automatically nest with the next block.  You're skeptical, I know.  But try it, it works!  I will say that, depending on how you assemble the blocks into a quilt, the seams where rail units meet end-to-end may not nest.  In that case I flip the seam at the intersection and press the seam into submission.

As I said before, you could make a quilt from all A blocks or all B blocks, but the more interesting construction comes from alternating A and B.  Because of the strong diagonal of the blocks, you can do just about anything you could do with a plain HST or a light/dark log cabin block.

For example, Furrows (or is this Sunshine and Shadows?):

Or how about Barn Raising:

Shift and twist a few blocks and you get this:

Or the reverse:

Check back tomorrow to see a finished quilt (not this one, though) and learn about the bonus block.

To give credit where credit is due, this mystery was inspired by a block called Hopkins Square in Judy Hopkins' book 501 Rotary-Cut Quilt  Blocks (Martingale & Company, Woodinville, WA, 2008).

And if you want more setting inspiration, check out Judy Martin’s Log Cabin Quilt Book  (Crosley-Griffith Pub. Co., Inc., Grinnell, IA, 2007).

I hope you had fun and I would love, Love, LOVE to see pictures of any finished quilts.

Mystery Monday - Final Linkup

So exciting!

I am so inspired by everyone's guesses that I want to share a few here.  But please be sure to visit their blogs for "the rest of the story" (links below).

Diann/Little Penquin Quilts was first to report in with these fun blocks. I can see possibilities in this combination; close, but no cigar. (Where did that expression come from?)

Diann's guess

Ramona/Doodlebugs and Rosebuds Quilts came up with several different arrangements; this one was my favorite.

Ramona's guess
Jeanne/Spiral's solution was similar to Ramona's.

Jeanne's guess
Julie in GA/Julie's Quilts and Costumes anticipates using her blocks for a Quilt of Valor, hence the patriotic colors.

Julie's guess
I think Julie in GA, Diann, and Marlene/Covered in Stitches were sharing the same wave link.

Marlene's guess
Isn't it fascinating how we can start with the simplest of shapes -- squares, rectangles, and triangles -- and combine them into an (almost) infinite array of designs.  These units would make great leaders/enders in RSC colors ... I may just start doing that!

I'm going to wait till this evening to reveal MY solution so that the West Coast contingent has a chance to check in.

Again, thanks to all of you who participated.  Be sure to check out the links below.

Sharon B anonymous
Marlene at Covered in Stitches
Ramona at Doodlebugs and Rosebuds Quilts
Julie at Julie's Quilts and Costumes
Diann at Little Penguin Quilts
Gayle at mangofeet
Cathy at Sane, Crazy, Crumby Quilting
Jeanne at Spiral
Jan at The Colorful Fabriholic
Joy at The Joyful Quilter
Nann at With Strings Attached