Saturday, April 8, 2017


My Row by Row quilt with rows from 2016 is pieced. It is ruffly 56 x 76 inches. My husband was funny. He actually cared to "audition" fabrics for the sashing and the border. It was nice to discuss it. Enough brown for the back and enough of the blue for the binding and already made. Now next: "quilting by check". I wouldn't want to wreck this at this stage by trying it myself.

James wanted me to take a photo of the back too.

Before the next project I decided to take a look at my machine. I did have it serviced just before I started the rows. Really? 

I wished I could tell about the project I did today but you have to keep the Cotton Robin a secret until it is revealed in the beginning of July. 

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Last one - DONE

# 8

This one I had to design myself. I had seen a Row similar and wrote to the shop (somewhere very north-west) but never received an answer. So, I decided to tackle it. And it was actually a lot of fun!

I started with this.
Cut brown strip 20 x 3.5 inches
Cut background 20 x 4 inches (2)

Background 2.5 x 4 inches (14)
Background 1.5 inch (7)
Signs 1.5 squares (14)

Of course how many pieces you cut depends how many signs you want.

Sew together to make the sign strip.

Sewing the corner triangles doesn't take long, especially if you chain piece. Have you read my "helpful tip" under Quilt Tutorials how I do those? Would love your feedback if you try it.

Now I inserted the signs. I had no idea how much "post" to make and what I wanted to do at the bottom, so I started at the top with the inserting. Just lay down the next sign and make sure the cut would not go through a previous one. Also, make sure you remember to leave the seam allowance. 

After I attached the sign to one side, I laid all out on the cutting board lines and cut of the sides. That way I made sure that the "post" would still be straight when I sewed the second part to it.

After I had done my 7 signs I felt the top needed a bird. I had a pattern from BLOCK LOTTO but only in a bigger size. I didn't feel like doing a big math calculation so I "winged" it (ha-ha, no pun intended). But what is wrong with this bird?

It came to me. I had forgotten one little corner triangle at the breast. Two seams opened and a little sky added.

I am quite happy.

Now on to the sashing. And borders on the sides to make it more proportional, otherwise it is too skinny.

Friday, March 31, 2017

Seven of Eight done

Number 7

Nashville. This row was piecing - partly straight squares, partly on-point. On the right side you were supposed to quilt the city scape.

Since I don't do the quilting and can't put the design in then I need to find another way.

So, plan B. I draw the pattern onto parchment paper, then ironed it onto the fabric. I stitched the pattern with a heavier thread and short stitches. You can see I have already peeled some of the paper off (before I remembered to take a photo).

Not the favorite of all the rows but I am quite proud of my effort.

I moved all the rows to a different design wall. I forgot that I can't a decent photo of it there because its a narrow hallway to the guest bedroom.

I decided that I only need one more ... the vertical sign post! I had seen a row like that but unfortunately do not have the pattern. So, here I am again: re-inventing the wheel. Stay tuned.

Monday, March 27, 2017

More then half-way

No # 5

The RVA (Richmond Virginia) Skyline from "All Brands Service Center". Totally finished. Sorry the colors in this photo are not so good. They are better "in person”.

No # 6

The vertical mailbox from "The Dancing Bobbin in Spring Hill TN".
See the difference a photo can make in the color?
Anyway, the first "empty" one is the pattern and then you can embellish however you want. I want! I found flowers in fabric we bought on one of our trips to Thailand. I have not done the appliqué stitching yet though.
I have 2 leftover bee-buttons I might use. Or may be I find a butterfly fabric. Will see. The top is a bit empty I think. A bird above the mailbox?

So far so good. Only 3 to go.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

More RxR progress

No # 4

This is of course representing Germany. Two of Berlin's best known symbols: Berliner Tor and the bear. I also tried to find fabrics for the little squares which symbolize Germany a little bit. Not easy these days when most things come from the same source and go all over the world. I also had to change the pattern (background) somewhat since I found the original somewhat "untidy".

Overall I am quite pleased so far and think it goes better then I expected. Of course the lay-out will be different then in this picture most likely with sashing in-between.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Row by Row progress

Finished # 2 as much as I could. I think the eyes of the bears are going to be little black beads. Don't know what to do about the sleeping bears nose. Any suggestions?

I am quite happy with the whole thing for somebody who is a piecer and not an appliqué-er.

On to # 3 - London !

Skyline traced on heat-n-bond light (as the pattern said).

Nest and Dove etc all traced too. This is fun.

Had the little stitching done last night and the Union Jacks are prepared too. This whole Row is in honor of husband James who was born and raised in Windsor, England (not too far from London).

I decided I needed to put the things like the stitching, the flags and the bees for #2 in a good place so I find them after the whole thing is quilted.

All ready and laid out for the appliqué stitching. NOT my favorite but ... I think I am getting better. Isn't that the goal?

Saturday, March 18, 2017

OMG ... time is ticking

Last year in June and July I had fun looking for Row by Row patterns. When traveling my husband was patiently letting me stop at some quilt shops. Some quilting friends and I did a little shop hopping. I really love this program.

I even got rows rom England and the only one from Germany! I laid out how I wanted to make a quilt. On the computer! A story about my husband and me. I am all excited. But it come to a stop.

Suddenly I realized ... the next Row by Row will be soon. I have to finish this before then!!!!!

So many are appliqué though. Not my thing. I am a piecer. I had a 9th row one (a kit) all pieced and even the appliqué ironed on ... and stopped.

But yesterday I decided to tackle it. I am quite happy with the outcome of this one. 
This one is finished!

I decided that appliqué is like everything else. You just need to do it. Practice, practice, practice!

I had to figure out the stitch first and decided on this one. I took a photo so not to forget. One of my problems if I want to do something again - how did I do that?

It seemed to get easier after a while.

No. 2 !

It also had all been cut out and ironed on ... and stopped. Here as I found it!

Since I was in such a good going I kept sewing. I finished the green floor and the tree. And then the owl. I am ok how that went too.

This morning I went back to it .... since it went quite well last night. Grrrrr. Not so good. Had to do some ripping here and there. Practice, practice, practice. OK here is that part. The bees are little buttons. I have 5 but hubby said 3 is enough. What do you think?

Only 7 1/2 Rows to go!

I might should mention that the 9th Row kit came from The Quilters in Fairfield VA.

The "Home is where the Honey is" came from Absolutely Fun, Murfreesboro TN.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Another one?

You will ask "What is it with her and Advent calendars?"

Ha-ha, yes, I really like them. No wonder when I saw one at Kate"s blog I fell in love. Kate was very nice and answered my question where she had found the pattern. The Advent calendar seems to be a family affair. She has more mini quilts then her 25 places (original pattern). The family decides each day together which mini should be used to fill that day's place.

It's a design by Denise McKenna of Meadow Lily Bridge.

I was so excited and ordered the pattern on Dec 24 but it didn't and didn't arrive. Here is why:
Hi Christa,
I am very sorry to hear that your pattern has not arrived yet.  If I can, I try to send patterns from Niagara Falls, NY, but I live about an hour from the border in Canada.  I received your order on the Dec. 24th and unfortunately, I couldn't get away.  As a result,  the pattern was sent by Canada Post.  Their hours are very limited over the Holiday Season.  They were closed Dec. 25, 26, 27, 28, as well as Jan. 1st and 2nd.
Did you know that the Canadian postmen (and postwomen) are so lucky?

Well, the pattern had arrived while I was gone and I could start "playing" when we came back. I had not paid attention that all the mini quilts were paper-pieced (sigh) but I kind of have other ideas anyway.

And here is what I have so far. I really changed the pattern a lot. Being German the 24 numbers had to be somewhere. I made myself a page with 24 outlined stars and put the numbers in them. Then I printed that on a "Fabric Sheet for Ink Jet Printers". Ironed on Pellon 805 Wonder-Under, cut out, ironed onto the 4 1/2 by 4 1/2 inch squares and machine stitched around.

The wallhanging is done and I have to decide how I want to go from here.

It is roughly 31 1/2 by 21 1/2 inches.

I have made three "test minis" and working on a third.

This one is a "regular quilt" with regular batting. It doesn't want to go very nicely into the square. May be if I did "regular quilt binding"?

These two I did with Pellon Flex-Foam 1-sided fusible stabilizer. I think this is the way to go. After experimenting some more I will report back to you! The size has to be very accurate though. The stitched angel (which I happen to have laying around waiting to be worked with) was a little (1/8 inch?) too large first.

The next one to try out.

And now ... sadly ... I have to probably lay it aside for a while because other projects are waiting.

Wished I could tell

Ahhhhh ... Cotton Robin. See link on right!
A secret. Can't show any photos until the big reveal (probably in June). I had made and mailed the center in January. I had received somebody else's center and hung it on my design wall. What to do for the first border? I looked at it for quite a while but always had the same thought and finally went with it. Quite pleased with it. Hope the owner will be too. It's mailed to the second-border-person. Now I am waiting for my next step to arrive. Eager!

I can tell about this though. Made the February Block Lotto block. I really liked it and saved the added directions for "4 flying geese at a time" for later use. Didn't win and sent my block off from Nashville. I have an idea for a "row" quilt and might use this pattern.

Yes, a row quilt. I found directions for this block online but it was too small so I wrote myself directions to make it much larger. This will be fun ... when I find the "Round Toit".

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

A helpful Tip

All those corner triangles!

When you do those you can either draw I line from one corner of the little square or put a crease in with an iron. Both methods are somewhat time-consuming. 
If you use the “draw a line” method you have to have the appropriate drawing tool depending on the color of the fabric.

With that method or with the ironing method you not always see the line  good when you are sewing.

This is what I DID!

Lay the little square on the big square.

Take a stiff piece of paper (greeting card is good) and lay it across from corner to corner.

 Slide it under the sewing machine until the needle touches the paper making sure that the paper didn’t slip.

Make a few stitches and make sure the bottom is aligned properly. Sew just next to the paper.

As you can see … I didn’t need to do any trimming.

(Of course you do cut away the two bottom layers)

I rotate the fabric so that I can again sew from the top edge down to the middle. Works best for me.

There were lots of corner triangles when I made the ribbon quilt. This worked great for me. If you would like it, here is the PDF to download.

Hope you find this helpful!!!