Carolina Hurricane Quilts and Scraps

I mentioned in a post in late September ( Carolina Hurricane Quilts )  about the Carolina Hurricane Quilts project being spearheaded by Carole  Carter on her blog – From My Carolina Home  

I made a few blocks right after that post, and gathered up supplies and made up “kits” to make more blocks.  I have a few scraps and squares and leftover half-square triangles, so it was quick to assemble those kits.  I usually don’t “save’ 4.5″ blocks, but I had LOTS of 5” squares in my Scrap storage system.  More about that in a minute…..

My wonderful bee – the Queen Bee’s took on the challenge of making blocks during our bee gathering last Tuesday.  They came armed with scraps and sewed for about 3 hours.

Queen Bees Carolina Hurricane Blocks

During the bee gathering I snapped some photos and sent them off to Carole!  It was fun to get a group photo.  Here are a couple of pictures of the members, hard at work.

Sharon Oct 2018

Marta and Nancy Oct 2018

(Sorry for the blur ladies….)

Tracy and Mary Oct 2018

(Imagine…I am actually there in a photo….that usually never happens.  Thanks Marta!)

I came home from the bee with a stack of blocks, and still a handful of the kits I made for myself.  I didn’t seem to get as much sewing done there as I had planned, so I spent the week working on more blocks.  My method for working on these has been to make “2 at a time”.  I use those  great little foam core design boards to lay out 2 blocks and move them to the iron and back to the machine, and I can “keep the angles” right fairly easily.  Look back at my blog here – Foam Core Design Boards to get info on the boards and how to construct them.

I keep making blocks, as my hand is continuing to improve following surgery.  Carole asked me if I wanted to put the blocks together into a top, and at the time, I wasn’t sure if I could manage. I think I have about 20  blocks done, and the bee had about 15 done, with more promised.  I planned to “send” them to Carole the 2nd week of November. My Queen Bees who are still making blocks are planning to bring them to me the first Monday of November.  We have such a great variety of fabrics in these blocks.  This afternoon, when the light is better I will put them all up on the design wall for a photo.  Now I am wondering if I am “able” to assemble them.  I will have to get specifics from Carole on size if I decide to do the assembly. (She reads my blog, so I am sure she will write! )

During this bee, it was fun to chat with my “bee mates”, and to learn which ones are following along with Carole on her “Autumn Jubilee 2018”, and who have enjoyed making her mystery quilts. I love that they found her through my blog posts.  I also love that Carole linked to my blog post last week.  The day she did that, I had 82 new visitors.  So, if you are a new reader, and came to find my blog because of Carole, I thank you for reading and coming back for another visit. Be sure to “follow” in your favorite method.  I love reading everyone’s comments too.

At my “next Queen Bee” gathering, I plan to work with one member  and help her come up with a plan for controlling & managing her scraps.  Bonnie Hunter   is one of my FAVORITE well known quilters and in her blog post today she talks about having “variety” in your scrappy quilts and about how to achieve that variety.  (Every January I tend to “clean up” my sewing room and cut my scraps into predetermined sizes. )  Thanks to the lessons I have learned from other bloggers, like Bonnie, and others, such as Joan Ford who has written books about working with scraps too.  I attribute my “scrap storage system” to the inspiration I have found on Bonnie’s blog.  My sizes I save, and my method for storage are unique to me, as it must be for everyone.  I will, no doubt, write about my methods in a future post.  If your curious, you can check out this post- Scrap Storage Containment System

My sister-in-law, Carolyn, wrote about her method on her blog here  One Block Wonder Woman and Scrap Overload .  If you are a “scrappy quilter” how do you “contain” the chaos of scraps?

Advertisements

The Safelight Project 2018

If you are a regular reader, you know I follow a blog written by Carole Carter called From My Carolina Home on WordPress.  Last Christmas, members of the Queen Bees participated in making Christmas cards for a project Carole had underway. These cards made their way to North Carolina and to  residents of a domestic violence  woman’s shelter. If you missed that post or are a new reader, you can check out our cardmaking here – Busy December Days

Carole has a new project underway called The Safelight Project 2018.  You can read the details about it on – From My Carolina Home blog

I decided I would participate again, and make the sunglasses cases and make-up bags she asked for.  I printed out the PDF instructions for making the make-up bag and the sunglasses case from Carole’s blog post.  I also went back and re-read her previous posts that she has linked for really thorough instructions and photo’s.

This is a FAT QUARTER FRIENDLY project.

It takes 2 Fat Quarters (FQ), some batting, and a little sew-in hook/loop fastener (aka Velcro or similar brand).  I have LOTS of fat quarters, plenty of batting scraps and velcro type products on hand.  I pulled out my bin(s) of FQ and spent more time selecting fabrics than I did making the first bag!

Safelight Project fabric choices

Fat Quarter pairs for Safelight project

I grabbed my batting “scraps” and my fusible tape and got busy too!

Batting and seam Tape by Pellon

I just opened my 2nd package of this Pellon EK150 Batting & Seam Tape.  I paid about $14.69 for 30 YARDS of this tape at Walmart . com recently.  The last package lasted me 3 or 4 years.  All you need to do to use it is to have a straight edge on both pieces you want to join, butt the edges together and press this on.  For a small project like this that I will do heavy quilting on, that fussy gap the arrow is pointing to won’t matter. If I was joining the pieces for a quilt, I would fuse a layer on both sides of the join to ensure there would be no shifting.  I love this stuff, and I use it on lots of small projects, like placemats, table runners, small quilts when I come up short with a bit of batting. No WASTE.  (I have a BIG tote full of batting “cut-off” pieces from quilts!) (I also love the lime green box which makes it “visable” in my cluttered sewing room…..my friend Nancy KNOWS how I lost the last roll…hiding in plain sight!)

I dug out my bag of hook and loop tape –

Velcro "STASH"

and I was set to go.

I stitched up the first make-up bag in about 20 minutes, including quilting.  I used a “swirly” stitch on my Janome for it.

Bag set for Project Safelight

It went together so easily, I thought this would be a great project to take with me to the Queen Bees gathering this week. Since I had it started, I wanted to keep going!  I packed it all up and took it along with me on Tuesday.  I did the quilting on the sunglasses case with my Singer Featherweight at the bee.  I put in a heavy duty needle (#16) for sewing the hook & loop tape.  My history with sewing that stuff is NOT good, and the secret is the #16 needle. The Featherweight powered through nicely. As you can see from the photo of the sunglasses case, it has a nice stitch for quilting too.

Of course, at a bee, I get to visiting and talking and never get as much done as expected.  So, I did more sewing last night at home. I set up an “assembly line” sewing arrangement and now have things moving along.

Assembly line sewing

Batting ready to go

I still have some corners to trim and pieces to turn and quilting to do!  It is a quick project, and doing more than one set is easy when you are doing the same step on multiple pieces. I’m please with the outcome so far, and once they are finished they will be easy to mail in a big envelope.

Do check out Carole’s post, The Safelight Project 2018 and see if you can help in one way or the other.  She has a big project, and her wonderful blog post is also full of PRIZES for participants.  The cause is so worthy too.  These bags will go to incoming residents on what must be one of the worst days of their life, when someone they love and trusted has hurt them physically and broken that trust.  The hope is to provide a positive caring message that they are worthy and valued women, and other women care deeply about the situation they are currently in. Won’t you help too as you are able?

Autumn Jubilee and more model railroad display work

If you have read my blog for a period of time, you know that I enjoy following posts by Carole – From My Carolina Home

Carole has been writing and sharing mystery quilts – of which I have done a couple; and last fall she did a sew along, and in December she did one as well.  Her projects are easy to work with, as you do the steps in small “chunks”.  This month, she is running her annual “Autumn Jubilee” on the blog, and there is another sew along.  The pattern this time is called Stars on Autumn Lane.  So far, it is looking like an easy project to make. I love that she gives out multiple sizes, so you can make a table topper, a lap quilt or a twin.  I told her in a comment I was GLAD she did not give out the KING SIZE info, or I would make one!  You see, when I get started with one of Carole’s patterns, I have SEW MUCH FUN, and want to “keep making” the units.

Do you remember my leaves and pumpkins from last year?  Well, you may remember I made THREE table runners doing that project, and those were Carole’s patterns!  And last month, I blogged about the place mats I was working on – Still playing with Autumn Jubilee 2016

Anyway, it is NOT too late to get started and sew along!  So, go visit Carole’s blog for the cutting instructions –Stars on Autumn Lane cutting instructions

and visit today’s post for the first block assembly – Block A – Stars on Autumn Lane

Now, you know me, I like to sew along!!  I have not even gotten started!!!!  I do have my box of Autumn Jubilee fabrics and stuff from “last years project”; so once I have some time, I can get busy.

You see, I haven’t been in my sewing room in over a week, because I have been helping the hubby get ready to display a model railroad set up at the Apple Scrapple Festival this weekend in Bridgeville DE. The display will feature HO model trains and we are promoting the DelMarVa Model Railroad Club open house season coming up in November through January.

He has had me painting and adding various elements to the scenery.  We loaded the SUV last night with 8 boxes of scenery, two boxes of trains, a table, 2 folding chairs, 2 bar stools, a box of brochures, a raffle ticket box and donation box, 2 great raffle prizes, box cars to sell, and much more that I can’t even think about right now.  Once we get the train display all set up tonight, I will get a few pictures!  In the meantime, here is a sneak peak of some of the scenery I have been playing around with —

Back of the School House

The school house is mounted to foam core board, and I have added a gravel parking lot and a green space between the building and what will be the edge of the train tracks.

20171009_200642

Added lots of green to “plastic model trees” to give them a more realistic look.

Weighting down the foam core board

Along side of the railroad track, I have some greenery going in next to the foam core board to “soften the edges”.   This piece of foam core was painted to give the appearance of concrete; for sidewalks and parking lots; then glued down to the layout.  The paint cans are to hold it down until dried.  Then the buildings will be placed after we transport to the set up location.  These buildings in the photo are not in position and have since been painted to give them a less “plastic” look.

This is “just a peek” at what I have been up to all week!  If you are in the area, be sure to stop by the Apple Scrapple Festival in Bridgeville DE on Saturday and look for us in the Woodbridge Middle School Cafeteria!  (Listen for the train whistle!)http://www.applescrapple.com/

Autumn Jubilee Quilt Along with Carole

REVISED **

Like I NEED another project…………..but I just can’t resist a “scrappy project”.   Yesterday morning, Carole – From My Carolina Home on WordPress posted her Autumn Jubilee Quilt Along .   Of course,  I was hooked as soon as I read her blog post!  If you comment on her blog post you might win a prize!  Carole has Aurifil Thread as a sponsor!

I went out to my sewing room over the garage, and I diverted my time from Mittens!  ( I swore I wasn’t going to let anything interrupt me…..)

I pulled out the bins from the cabinet that hold my “scrap storage system” .  (Thanks Bonnie Hunter  and Joan Ford ); collected some already cut 3″ and 2.5″ squares in the Autumn colors.  I even had the neutrals, already cut, in those sizes.

(note – Bonnie and Joan have similar approaches; both have books and blogs.  My system is a combination of both, which I have previously written about.  Links at the bottom of the post to both Bonnie & Joan, and my previous post about scrap storage.)

I laid out a block; dug in my scrap baskets (sorted by color) for pieces to use for the stems, and got busy.  While I was digging in the scrap basket, I pulled some other pieces that could be cut into squares and starched, ironed and cut them too.

Autumn Jubilee block

I got these blocks together before dinner.  They all need squared up to 6″.    

**Carole just sent me a note –  the blocks finish as 6 inches, at this stage you square them to 6-1/2 inches to allow seam allowance.

Leaf blocks for Autumn Jubilee

I went “back out to the garage” after dinner. (The dishwasher was running and I left dishes in the sink, but hey, I was on a mission and dinner really interrupts my flow……)

I decided I wanted more blocks.  Carole said –  “If you want to make all the projects in the quilt along, you’ll need 24. “

So, I got busy!   Since I pretty much pulled out of my scrap storage box all of the colors, I dug into the scrap bags for the oranges, golds and browns.  I did a little more starching, pressing and cutting.  While I was at it, I cut some other sizes to go into my scrap storage boxes; things that were too small for this project, like 1.5 & 2″ strips and squares. (I always cut the biggest size I want first, in this case 3″, then I cut the remaining into the next usable size).

I built a few more stems, sewed some more half square triangles (HST)  and looked at the clock. It was nearly 10:30 pm.  ( I swear I was only going out for half an hour!)  Time flies when you are having fun!  I brought my small cutting mat and trimming tools into the house with me and will do a little squaring up of the HST’s this morning.

HST for Autumn Jubilee Quiltalong

I think these will give a bit more variety to the leaves.  I might have to dig in my boxes again for greens for another round……. I really don’t know how many I will get made.  At least another 6.

I don’t know what the project will turn into.  That is part of the fun of the Quilt Along that Carole does.  Next block won’t come out until next Friday, and I am leaving for Texas at the crack of dawn the next morning, but I will at least have a start. It will be nearly Halloween when I get home, and I won’t be able to keep up, but I will follow along while I am away.   I think these alone will make cute place mats or a nice fall table runner (which I need), or 4 together for a table topper.  I will have to “wait and see” for now.

What are you working on?

NOTE:  NO YARDAGE WAS USED IN THIS PROJECT……all scraps!   

Bonnie Hunter – Scrap Users System –  http://quiltville.blogspot.com/2005/06/scrap-users-system.html

Joan Ford  – http://hummingbird-highway.com/do-you-need-scraptherapy/

My scrap storage posts –  https://stitchinggrandma.wordpress.com/2015/10/18/scrap-storage-containment-system/

Linking up today – Show off Saturday

 

 

Project updates – Mystery quilts and trains

This past Friday, commonly called BLACK Friday I got to sew!  No shopping for me, except for a few grocery items late in the afternoon.  It was an “exciting” day for me because it was the day that PART  # 1, for the Bonnie Hunter / Quiltville Winter Mystery Quilt 2015 Allietare,  was released.  If you missed it; go directly to Bonnie’s blog – Allietare, Part 1  .  If you want to see what others have accomplished over just 1 weekend – check out the “LINK UP” that Bonnie is running on her blog post today – Clue 1 Link Up Party!

Like many other QUILTVILLIANS, I was up early, printing out that set of “clues” for Part 1, and getting my sewing groove on.  I decided I would try the Easy Angle ruler suggested in the directions for making the half square triangle units.  I struggled to get my perfect seam allowance so the units would measure out precisely as indicated in the “clues”.  My Janome 8900 has a 1/4″ setting, and a 1/4″ foot, and generally that is my standard “seam allowance” on everything I do.  But, Bonnie is very specific in the instructions about the FINISHED size of the unit, and making sure you adjust your seam allowance to ensure it is perfect.  I ended up taking off my 1/4″ foot, using a standard foot, and moving my needle over as FAR to the right as it would go.  I did end up with better finished units and other than a few that got “chewed up” while chain piecing, or “chewed up” by the silly foot on my OLISO iron, I did well. Love that iron, but it catches the edges on the little things.

I dedicated the day to my project and I worked from “before breakfast” until it was time to stop for dinner.  ( I did venture into the house & kitchen to put on a nice pot of turkey soup. Epicurious.com has a great recipe for Turkey Noodle Soup with Tomatoes….5 star in my view) (Thanks darling daughter for the recipe idea).  

I was able to get 60 units finished, and a big pile stitched and ready to trim.  Because my skills with the easy angle are not expert, I did find that I needed to trim more than just the dog ears.Ready to stitch Chain piecing

ready to trim

As you can see in that basket on the left, I have LOTS & LOTS more trimming to do.  That will be my project today.  I love using my Clover Wonder clips for grouping into stacks of ten, for easy counting.

Today, Bonnie Hunter posted on Facebook a link that I wanted to share with you.  You might remember last spring I did a set of wonderful “marking pins” for keeping my rows and columns organized, while moving between the design wall & the sewing machine.  I totally failed to credit the blog where I found the instructions that worked for me.   Nancy’s Marking Pins tutorial .  Do you remember my pins?large group of pins

So, I must thank Nancy for her clear directions!  I remember that I had been searching for several months for a method to make my pins and her blog was a winner.  I saw the link to her blog today on Facebook, and knew I better extend my thanks!  In fact, I am going back to those previous blog posts later today and inserting her link there too!!

Friday was also the day that Carole released the final instructions for the Christmas Table Topper – Quilt Along she designed and I have been working on.  In case you missed it, check here for Part 4 – From My Carolina Home blog .  All I was able to do was get the directions printed out.

Not much has been happening in my quilting room over the weekend, sadly.  I have spent the weekend with the hubby at his model railroad club open house, selling raffle tickets, welcoming visitors etc. It is a lot of fun to see the kid’s (young and old) enjoy the displays.    There was a lot of activity, and we did have the best weekend in over 5 years! If you love model trains, enjoy looking at displays; there are 3 more weekends when the club will be open to the public.  Details here – DelMarVa Model Railroad Club  .  I did take some great pictures to share if you are unable to visit .  Parkersburg yard

You can find more here – DelMarVa Model Railroad Club photos

Speaking of trains, I want to tell you about a different kind of train – Meal Train.  There was a death recently of a member of my church, who was also my friend. His family lives very close by and I took a meal to them the day after he passed away.  My pastor asked if I could coordinate meals, and offered some suggested websites that make it very efficient.  I signed up and started notifying church members via Facebook, and the response and function of the website has been great.  If you ever have the occasion to help in your community,   Meal Train  is a great tool.  The website suggests it is useful for ” organizing meals for a friend after a birth, surgery, or illness”.  And, at times when you can do little else to help, it is a wonderful way to ensure a bereaved family has a hot meal and they don’t have to worry about cooking.

I hope you had a wonderful week of Thanksgiving, if you are in the USA.  Our holiday is sometimes full of over-indulging, but it is also a wonderful time to catch up with friends and family too.  I have lots of trimming to do, and some catch up work on that Christmas Table topper! I hope you have a chance to spend time with your family and friends, and enjoy some time at your hobbies too.