Friday, January 14, 2022

Rocking at the Island

 Back home from my annual retreat at Rock Island State Park.  

This was my 17th year hosting a cabin of 5 quilters.  The participants have morphed over the years, but the agenda is always the same -- sew, eat, laugh, repeat.  I have missed only one year (2020 due to the TOALT).  

My first project after settling in on Sunday was the One Block Wonder I began as a class sample last year.  

I thought it would be a quick finish but discovered I still had to construct about half of the columns and then put them all together.  It needs a good pressing before I can add a simple border of the gold.   After getting to that point on Monday, I started making chandelier beads to go on the unfinished Overhand Knots.  By Monday night I had this sweet piece:

I plan to add a narrow stabilizing border on the sides and call it done.  Thanks to Diann/Little Penguin Quilts for suggesting the chandelier blocks.  They finish at 4.5", the size of the small red square.  I was amazed that the math was perfect for the already-bordered center.  Not the most professional approach, I'll admit, but sometimes we all get lucky!

Tuesday and Wednesday I worked on an original design I call Irish Grandmother (Irish Chain and Grandmother's Choice). Nann/With Strings Attached thinks it should be called Irish Fly!  I found 4-patches and cut strips for most of the blocks in the project box, but only two of the Irish Chain blocks constructed. 

It, too, needs a good pressing before I consider what to do about borders.  I used the scarlet and gray fabrics in honor of my mother who graduated from The Ohio State University in 1930.  (And, BTW, she was not Irish ...)  Please note that those last two projects incorporated the RSC color of the month!

I had a couple of big projects waiting in the wings, but by Thursday I was brain dead so I spent the day making a pile of yellow and gray 9-patches -- mindless sewing.  I have no idea what I will do with them.

All-in-all it was another enjoyable gathering.  We had a companion group in the next cabin and spent some time cabin-hopping.  I had invited a neighbor quilter as a guest replacement for one of our regulars who was out due to eye surgery.  Since she is new to Tennessee, I took time to drive her to some of the sights in the park, including the twin falls in the opening photo. (I know, there's more than two falls there! I don't know where the name came from.)  The interesting thing about the falls is that the water is coming through the limestone bluff from a lake on the other side which resulted from the dam built in 1889 on the same river. 

We are expecting heavy snow over Saturday night; more good sewing time to wrap up these projects.


  1. Those are all such pretty projects, Libby! I love that they are each so different from the other. It was fun to look closely at Irish Grandmother and figure out the blocks it's made of - such a great design!

    1. The cool thing about those blocks is no side seams to match, just the block intersections!

  2. I love all your projects! This was the first day I saw the One Block Wonder--you picked such great fabric! It looks like a work of art! Still love the Overhand knots and the chandeliers work perfect on that! But I love your "Irish Grandmother" (a name which sounds better than Fly) in honor of your grandmother--she would love it! Can't wait to see them finished! Stay safe!

  3. The falls are so beautiful! It looks like you had a very productive time at your retreat. The chandelier blocks are perfect on you knot piece. I really like the OBW and Grandmother's Chain, too. Pretty things are being made in your neck of the woods!

  4. Sounds like a fun and productive retreat. The chandelier blocks are perfect for the table runner. Your Irish Grandmother quilt turned out beautifully too. Stay warm, we had the white and cold stuff yesterday.

  5. (Did I say that? Don't recall!) The chandelier blocks are ideal for the knot design. Glad the retreat was productive and satisfying -- and that you didn't get slammed by any of the snowstorms.

  6. Gorgeous waterfalls and lovely projects, Libby!! Glad you were able to get away with your quilting buddies. Even happier that you got home safely before the flakes fell!

  7. Oh my, that Celtic knot quilt is looking fabulous!! And so is your Irish Grandmother, LOL.

  8. Diann was right, those chandelier blocks totally suit the center piece don't they. I love Irish chain quilts and want to make one some day.
    Sounds like a wonderful time, Libby, with like minded friends. And you accomplished a lot too. Very pretty setting. Have a great weekend!


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