Monday, January 20, 2014

Austerity + Bad Weather = Quilty Finishes

After the new year, we re-implemented our austerity plan in an effort to replenish some funds lost after the furnace repair, windshield repair, tuition, Christmas, etc. Need I go on? We’re all probably in a bit of the same pickle to some degree. With little wiggle room in the budget, there was plenty of at home time to sew. First up is my cat quilt.

I finished quilting it last weekend. I just used a simple straight line quilting ½” apart using my walking foot as a guide and Bottom Line thread by Superior Thread in a light gray. I wanted the cats to take center stage so I used a thread that would fade into the background a bit.

The pattern was a QAL with Elizabeth Hartman. I used mostly scraps with the exception of the background and backing which I had on hand slated for a different project (oh well).
I think that’s what I liked most about this project. I really had to dig through my scraps to combine colors and patterns to sort of match Elizabeth’s original design. Believe it or not, this is something I don’t always feel comfortable doing. It really stretched me and I love the sort of “color wheel” that the cats represent.

This became a present for me from me. I love it!!! I sort of love real cats too but it is impractical for us to have one. This wall hanging will find a permanent home in my sewing space once I finish the second one I’m making. What?

Oh yes! I’m making a second cat quilt. Cat Repeat! Cats @ Night? : )
Temperatures finally warmed up in Wisconsin so much so that the next round of precipitation came in the form of freezing rain. That also contributed to the hunkering down and staying in last weekend. It was time to finish the last of the Swoon blocks.

This block pattern is from Camille Roskelly and was THE RAGE last year in the online quilting community. You should check out her blog – she’s really just the cutest thing and is so incredibly talented. Of course, I had to make one too which is why I’m calling this one my peer pressure quilt. Let’s just say I sort of dislike half square triangles or HSTs as they are called in the quilting circle. All that seam matching drives me insane.

In addition to being my peer pressure quilt, it is also my procrastination quilt. But the blocks are finally done and just waiting to be pieced together to make a top. I have them laid out on the floor in our daughter’s bedroom which may just give me the push I need to put them together . . . . she is planning on returning home again this summer. Lots of time! This quilt deserves its own blog post so look forward to that.

Finally I pieced these strips for a commissioned quilt for a co-worker’s daughter. Love these colors!!! I didn’t purchase the sashing because I wasn’t quite sure the route I wanted to go. Unfortunately austerity measures have also limited fabric purchase and that means this one will have to wait until February. That’s okay – I have more to keep me going but why is it the best sales are going on when you have the least amount of money?
Random Thoughts
1.  Why do towel manufacturers put that decorative band on bath towels only to have it shrink up much faster than the rest of the towel when they are washed? Do you experience this or do I just keep my towels for too long? Do your towels look like this?

2.  I have never liked soup as a meal because when we were sick as kids, our mom would make us eat soup. Something has been embedded in my brain that soup=sick. But Mr. Left Brain LOVES soup and he LOVES rice so together we are going to make some homemade Chicken and Rice Soup. We are using the Pioneer Woman's recipe.  I'll let you know how it turns out.
Life is good - it just is!! TTFN!

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