"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jer 29:11 (NIV)

Friday, February 15, 2019

Planning out the Layout for the Snails

As I've managed to make 9 snail blocks so far, I decided that it's time I started thinking about how I wanted to lay the blocks out.

To help think about how I wanted to lay things out, I drew rectangles to scale to represent the sizes of the blocks that I've been making. 

This is what I came up with for a rough sketch of the size top I need for my bed - approximately an 80" by 100" top with no borders on it.  Colored blocks show the ones I's still need to make, pinky areas are were I'd have to fill in with filler blocks.

Lots of blocks would still be needed if I were to make it totally with out borders since I like it to hang down the side of my bed, and I tuck it under the mattress at the end of the bed because I toss and turn at night.

Or I might do something like this so I just have filler blocks at the bottom where I tuck it in.

What ever way I decide to go, I do plan to do it in panels so that it is easier to handle.


1. For savings to use for bills when paychecks don't come through when they should.

2. For being able to say "It is well with my soul" and mean it no matter the circumstances in my life

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Scrap Happy February 2019

Final 4 blocks for my improv challenge.  Scraps and orphan strip sets and blocks make up these

And the first 8 blocks that they join.

The current plan is to set them together with narrow WOW sashing, and then figure out a border for the quilt.

Be sure to check out what everyone else has posted about this month.

Check out what the others have done with their scraps this month -
KateGun, TittiHelĂ©neEvaSue, Nanette, Lynn, Lynda, Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy, Debbierose, Tracy, Jill, Claire, JanKaren, Moira ( me),  SandraLindaChrisNancyAlysKerryClaireJeanJohanna,
Joanne, Jon, HayleyDawnGwen and Connie

1. First chemo session is done, was long but no problems arose from it.

2. For friends who check to make sure that I'm ok after things like the chemo.

Monday, February 11, 2019

Orphan Block clean out

Couldn't sleep again today, so I went  through my orphan blocks and block parts in looking for something for a project that's percolating in my mind for a blog hop that i signed up for.

I weeded this pile of orphan blocks and block sections out as I was looking for what I wanted and they are in a box to give away.  I finally convinced myself that I don't need to keep all of them, esp. the stuff that I have no idea what to do with.

What is left I have an idea of what to do with them.   And the smaller ones probably will end up as filler blocks on my snail quilt.
Not sure who gave me these orphans, but I'm going to sash them out to a common size (10" I think to match the green star block under them), and then planning on putting them into a little quilt for one of the Hands 2 Help charities this year.   Not sure tho what color to sash with, maybe navy kona?
Over the weekend I got asked to make a quilted postcard for someone who is getting ready to celebrate her 90th BD.   Was told she likes blues, flowers and pansies. 

This had been given to me by someone who had been on a CQ list I'm on several yrs ago and I'd never figured out what to do with it.   I think that flower in the center looks much like a pansy.......so it will be the start of the postcard.

This is the second new commission received this weekend.   Not big, but every little bit helps.

And yes, I did find what I was looking for - these strips sets from scraps that I plan to use to test an idea that is in my head.  Just need to print out the PP pattern so that I can start working on it.  =)


1. Thankful to only work 2 miles from where the hematologist's office is after getting a call this morning telling me that the appt I thought was tomorrow was really this morning....sigh.......

2. That I was able to get my food prep for the week done over the weekend so that if I don't feel up to cooking on Wed after the infusion I don't have to worry about it.

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Snails all together........

With 9 blocks made I decided I'd better lay them out on my bed to see how things were looking so far. 

At this point, I'm thinking I'll make one more of the largest blocks (18" by 27" finished), and then I have orphan blocks pulled for 4 blocks with 9" shells (9" by 15" finished) and 2 with 12" shells (12" by 18" finished). 

I've started working on a layout sketch so that I can figure out how these are going to go together and how many filler blocks (and what in sizes) I'll need to make to finish the quilt.

Now to decide - border or no border.......hmmmmm, any opinions?

1. Being unable to sleep due to leg cramps means I've had extra time to get things done around here.

2. For all the blessings in my life.

Completed Snails and Another Flower Colored In

Finished three more snail blocks for my quilt over the weekend.

First up was this green and turquoise block.   The shell was made from an orphan strip set that I think I made yrs ago for a long ago project, but can't remember for sure.   Might have bought it in a scrap bag.

Next up was this multicolor snail.  Shell was made from scraps bought in a scrap bag a couple of yrs ago.  The body was made from Kaffe Fawsett scraps bought at my "local" quilt store.

This orange-red snail was made from an orphan block that a gal on a CQ list I'm a part of gave me several years ago.  The body is made from a scrap of a black and white pin-dot.

The white TOT background in all the blocks is from a remnant of the fabric.

And I was happy this weekend to color in one of the bigger flowers that has been hanging out there now for 4 years after sending off the check the first part of .    Love getting to mark off one of the bigger bills as paid off.   Next one up to be paid off is the light pink one in the left "painting", followed by the final flower in that "painting".


1. For God's provision of the money needed to make progress in paying off the bills.

2. For the cold rain that isn't snow or ice!

Saturday, February 9, 2019

When you can't sleep..........

...........Quilt or sew as the case may be.  And that's what I've been doing since about 1:30 this morning. 

So far this weekend I've completed 5 more Christmas stockings for the big commissioned order.   These are from 4 of the bandannas that I was given.  Three of the stockings had to be strategically repaired,but thankfully there was enough of the bandannas to do it and be able to match the prints so that the repairs are not visible unless you know where to look.

Made this pillow from another bandanna when I couldn't sleep in the wee hours of the morning thanks to leg cramps that just would not go away if I was laying down (and yes, I've tried everything that i know to do.   they are side effects of medication that I have to take at present).

It finished at 16" and is backed in a med-dk grey Kona that was in my stash.
 All of this finished filling this bag of the latest round of commissioned items.   Just waiting now for my customer to be able to come pay and pick them up. 

Next up is deconstruction of the two pairs of denim overalls so that I can cut more stocking fronts along with  the fronts for 4 tote backs.

And this morning I made three more improv blocks - the top row ones pictured here with the first 5 that I made.   I'll be making 4 more blocks to even out a bit on the color distribution, and to get the final piece of the jungle/parrot print into the quilt.


1. That I know what to expect with the chemo I'll be starting this coming Wed.

2. That the side effects are minor compared to what other regimens have.

Friday, February 8, 2019

Snail 6 & 7

I went through my orphan blocks and pulled out blocks that I thought would work for the shells on more snails. 

First up was this blue star block that had been bordered out to 15".  It was given to me yrs ago along iwth other orphan blocks by a quilting friend in Wisconsin.  Corners on the shell aren't perfect, but it'll still go into the final quilt.

The next orphan block I plan on making up is this block.   The block was given to me by an online quilting friend who was originally going to use it for a CQ block. 

I'm still debating what color body to put with the oranges & red.  This portion finishes out at 12".


1. That I'm at max out of pocket as they the work for pre-cert on chemo to start next week.

2. That I know who is in control when all seems to be out of my control and nothing works the way it did in yrs past with the clotting disorder.

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Commission Progress, Part 3 - Finishes and Next Projects.

Been busy working on the commission I have at the present time.   Finished last night were 4 more memory pillows made from t-shirts.

Next up last night was cutting out the lining sections for the next batch of stockings that need to be made. 

I've managed to cut 21 sets of lining pieces (front and back) from a king-sized flat sheet.   The three piles in the pic are all that is left at this point, and that will be reduced shortly.   Front pile is small scraps that are only fit for the trash.

Back left pile will be cut into squares and pieced with a solid white (either muslin or something else) to make a pieced lining for a stocking.  Sheet is poly/cotton so I'm thinking I might need to get a piece of poly-cotton broadcloth for this to work best.

And I'm planning on splitting the top band into two sections, then sew them together.   Then will cut lining for one stocking out of the resulting piece of "fabric".

Next up is stabilizing these bandannas.  Stockings are planned for at least 4 of them.  One of the patriotic ones may become the back of a denim tote.   All of them will need to be stabilized with interfacing.
This bandanna was well 'loved' by the uncle, so it is very soft and will end up in a pillow because the design is too big for a stocking.  It will be stabilized before sewing.

This Bugs Bunny bandanna will either end up as a pillow or the back of a denim tote bag.  Gotta see how size plays out once I have the denim overalls deconstructed and I know how large the totes will be.


1. That I am fortunate enough to have health insurance, that hasn't always been the case.

2. For all who read my blog, and give such sweet feedback.

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Improv Challenge Blocks 4 & 5

Two more blocks in the challenge have been completed -

 Block 4 - should have been block 3 but I never got the email on it.   Basis was triangles.

This one started with 4 UFO orphan block parts that had just the first two sides added to them in half-log cabin style.    I free-form added triangles.  Then added the sashing between the units.   White was added to the block on two sides, with green triangles added free-style to the corner.

21 different fabrics in this block.
Block 5 - theme was gentle curves.

I started this block off with the orange & yellow piece.   It was an orphan block made from the leftover ends of several strip sets.  Curves were added by piecing in the green and WOW fabrics.  The WOW was inadvertently cut upside down so the wrong side of it is on the right side of the block....oops....oh well.

And yes that is an inset corner at the top - I fed all pieces cut out as I made the curves back into the block to make it large enough.

Two more blocks to go in the challenge, but I'm planning on making 12 blocks so that I can put them together in a toddler sized quilt.


1. Thinking positive that my counts will still be up when I see the doc tomorrow afternoon.

2. For the PT job that I'm working from home, even tho I still don't know how much I'm making per hour....lol.  (I do know I'll get paid...just not how much per hour.)

T-Shirt Memory Pillows - A Tutorial

Ever wonder what to do with t-shirts from someone no longer here, or ones from places where you've visited but you no longer can wear?  Want to make something that isn't as involved as a quilt?  A memory pillow from from a t-shirt is one possibility that you can make.

Materials needed:

1 or more T-shirts
           (Note: the smaller the size shirt, the smaller the pillow form
                      will need to be unless you add in other fabric)

fusible stabilizer (I used Pellon P44F fusible interfacing, normally $0.99 at Joann Fabrics)

Notions used:

Ruler the size needed to cut the initial square
           (I used my June Tailor Shape Cut ruler because I
             needed 16" squares and that's all I have that big)
Rotary Cutter
Cutting Mat


Take your t-shirt and press it if needed, smooth it out so that it lays flat. 

Separate the front of the shirt from the back by -
-- cut the sleeves off of the shirt
-- cut up the sides of the shirt
-- cut across the shirt at the shoulder seams

Once the size square (or whatever shape you are cutting) has been cut, then it is time to cut the pieces for the back.

Take the remainder of the front (or back) that was below where the design was cut out and cut a section that is the same width as the design section that you cut above.  The finished t-shirt hem should be at the bottom as shown in the picture.

Square up the side opposite to where the hem is.  This piece will be the top of the two back pieces, and for a 14" pillow should be about 11-12" in finished width if possible for best coverage.  If your piece isn't that big, then just trim it to the largest size possible.

Repeat this from the back section.  This piece can range in size from 8-10" in finished width for a 14" pillow.  I aim for a 4-5" overlap so that I don't have to put a button or other fastener on the back in order to keep the sections from gapping.

Once both sections have been cut, then lay the largest back section face down on top of the section as shown in this picture. 

Note: I tend to try to layout the back pieces such that the grain of the knit is going opposite to that of the front section in order to minimize seam stretching.

Lay the second back piece on top of the previous two sections as shown.

Pin all of them together and then sew your seam.  (I use a 5/8" or 3/4" seam allowance depending on how big the sections are cut and what size pillow form is used.)    To help stabilize the seam allowance, stitch a second time closer to the edge.

Turn the pillow cover right side out and press the seams.

Insert Pillow form and your memory pillow is complete.

1. Today is warmer than tomorrow will be, and there's no snow or ice!

2. For all of the commissions that I'm working through.

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Improv Challenge, Blocks 1-3

I've done string piecing for a long time as a means to using up the tiny and/or narrow pieces in my scrap stash.   However, I hadn't done any real improv piecing until seeing this challenge as my friend Susan was making her blocks.

For this, I started off with a couple of scraps that are my "focus" fabrics - by different designers but very similar in theme/pattern and in colors used in them.   I've then started using fabrics that go with these so that I can put the final blocks together into a finished quilt.
 Block 1 was to use strip sets. 

I first pulled a few pieces that would work with the prints, and then used part of a leftover piece of "string fabric" in the block as well.   All fabrics are scraps.  14 different fabrics in this block.
 Block 2 was to use "chunks" of fabric.

Starting to pull more colors from the focus fabrics in this one.  24 different fabrics from my scraps in this one.
 Block 3 was to be an improv log cabin.   I ended up with a cross of a log cabin and court house steps block - never did like to follow the instructions...lol.  There are about 15 different scrap fabrics in this block.  See the parrot in the center peeking out?

1. Check is in the mail to payoff the next bill.  So happy to get to color in another flower.

2. No snow or ice down here, but nice 60's and 70's temps.

Monday, February 4, 2019

More Snails Blocks Completed

I completed three more snails yesterday.   These finish at 9" tall by 15" long.

The shells are made from orphan blocks (top two) that I bought in a scrap bag from one of the local quilt store.  The shell for the third one was  made from orphan block sections that were bought in the same scrap bag.   All other fabrics were from my scraps.


1. Having a customer that likes my work so much that she's planning on recommending me to all who need custom work like I've been doing for her (the stockings, etc)

2. Having realized that I've saved enough from last years sewing to be able to pay off another bill with it.  And what is already on the books for this yr will take care of a second one once I'm done! 

Sunday, February 3, 2019

Commissioned Stockings - Part 1

The first round of commissioned stockings have been completed. 

I started with this 3X men's Wrangler shirt and from it was able to get 9 different stockings.  All that I had left from the shirt was one cuff, half of the collar, the seams, and a few small scraps of the body that weren't big enough to do anything with. 
 Final stocking made by piecing the leftover bits and sections of the shirt into a big enough piece to cut one more stocking out.  Sleeve placket in the white section was left in for interesting. 
 Shirt label, sleeve placket, half of the collar, and a front shirt pocket used to add interest to these four stockings.
 Cut from the back of the shirt, placket from the shirt front used to add interest to the stocking.
 Left stocking has one of the sleeve cuffs at the top complete with the buttons that were on it.  remaining two were cut so that the pocket and logo were on the stockings.
 A Harley Davidson sheet is being used to cut the lining sections from.  Grosgrain ribbon used for the hanging loop. 


1. Customers who pay promptly and don't wait for everything to be completed first.  (esp. with this since there are so many things being made.)

2.  For not having to deal with the winter weather problems caused by the polar vortex this past week.