Alive and sorting

Greetings after a month on “the road and sea”!  I came home alive, but slightly unwell…with a nasty ear ache!!! That has been tended to, but flying home wasn’t fun!

I have been traveling since late October, and am glad to be back on my home turf!  I have been in Maryland, North Carolina, Florida, Aruba, Columbia, Panama Canal, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Mexico, California, Texas, North Carolina (again), Maryland (again) and finally back to Delaware…..

Lots of great stories but no time until next week to share them, and the great photo’s with you of my transit of the Panama Canal.

Meanwhile, Thanksgiving was celebrated with my daughter and her family. Then we rolled into the weekend with the DelMarVa Model Railroad Club Open House . We had nearly 900 visitors last weekend, and are gearing up for this weekend now.  (Yes, you still have a chance to come & see all the trains!)

This week we spent cleaning out & moving my dear friend’s ENTIRE sewing room out of her house to my house. (I did squeeze in time for my Queen Bees on Tuesday, while the hubby did some of the packing by himself). We packed out the entire room, including the wonderful cabinets her husband had custom built for her room.  Over 40 banker boxes and a dozen plastic totes, 3 loads in the SUV, and one load on the landscaping trailer later, we are tired and sore and overwhelmed with STUFF.  The pix of the stuff on the trailer is a bit “blurry”…probably because my arms are sore and tired~!!!~

cabinets

I have made 2 trips so far to donate items that are not things I will use, and to make room for her things.

off to the charity store

I had what I call the “sugar plum fairy vision” of how this beautiful cabinetry was going to work in my sewing room.  (This fair vision was without a measuring tape. )  My basic space (upstairs over the garage) is 10 x 17; exploding out into the 17 x 70 area….  I had hoped to replace my current furniture and use her wonderful unit, but it was NOT going to be an easy fit.

So; rather than tear my sewing room apart, and wait on the hubby to build new counter tops for the cabinets, I decided HE should use the wonderful L shaped unit. It is 10 foot long in each section of the L.   It fits PERFECTLY into the area where he was working on his model trains.

So, we spent yesterday clearing out stuff that had been sitting for 5 years; and moved the cabinets in.  Today, we had to summon up our muscles to carry the big counter tops upstairs.  They are solidly built and extremely heavy, and by the end of the day yesterday I begged off.  Once we got those counter tops upstairs, we had to get them set “just right” and get them secured to the cabinets.  It will be “after the train club open house” before hubby can start filling up the 16 drawers with HIS hobby stuff.

Hobby space for Bill

I am excited because he has been working off of a table for the last 2 years, and didn’t really have any space.  I am also thrilled he finally agreed to dispose of those things that have been “hanging around” for so long.  I think it is a real eye-opener, when you go to someone else’s home and help clear out.  We are buried in STUFF here, and I am beginning to convince him we need to “throw stuff out” or “move it along” to someone else.

Meanwhile, I have 40+ banker boxes of fabric and crafting items to sort through and “recycle”.  This is going to take me a while, and I want to do it with care and not get rid of something that my dear friend might be able to use at her new residence.  My friend has moved into an efficiency assisted living apartment with very little space.  I plan to make a small sewing basket for her, with essentials; and then will periodically take her a project that she had been working on. She was “in the midst” of embroidering some lovely pillowcases, so I am going to start with them.  I know she loves handwork, and if I only take 1 project at a time, she will probably not feel overwhelmed.  It was a good reminder to me to get busy and FINISH stuff!  She is like most quilters, a woman with many hobbies, and LOTS of projects on going.

Meanwhile, enjoy this video of my honey, holding up the light so I could take pictures. Don’t mind the mess….it means we USE this stuff & space!!

Bills new cabinets

Here after he is in my debt, because I gave up the coveted cabinets, but hey; that’s ok!  I gave them up for him to use!!  And I also gave him that great power strip on the table with 10 plug in spots and 2 USB outlets (Happy Birthday Bill! )

So, after being gone a month, I am behind on EVERYTHING !!!

What is going on in YOUR hobby space???

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Machine embroidery and applique

Promised my daughter I would make a couple of hooded bath towels for the youngest grandchild. She is growing so fast and those little hooded baby towels are just not big enough any more. My daughter asked for 2, and I chose the basic fluffy “white” bath towel and hand towel to use.

I found a great pattern/tutorial on “French Frills” embroidery website for making the hooded towel work with embroidery on the hood.  I’d done hooded towels before but they always had a seam at the center of the forehead.  French Frills offers the pattern as a free download, and you have to select 5×7 hoop size.  French Frills freebies page

They also have some cute designs to purchase. They have some very elaborate designs, and also offer SVG files for cutting the applique pieces.  They do offer some 4×4 designs, but not many.

Because my Brother PE500 is only capable of a 4×4 design, I was limited by design choices.  I knew I wanted a unicorn, and I knew I wanted some “undersea” designs.  I ended up at Embroidery Library  and chose from the “animals on the edge” category for both my clown fish

clownfish - ready tocome off the hoop

and my unicorn.

Ready to deliver - 1 Unicorn towel

I’m really pleased with the results.  I’ve only done applique on the embroidery machine one other time, for a baby bib, so there was a learning curve for me with this project.  (Note to my embroidery friends….sometimes I do break down a BUY designs….but ONLY for a really special project!!)

All wrapped up and ready to go

I read somewhere that if you don’t have embroidery software, you can load a sheet of paper in your hoop and “stitch out” the die line to make cutting the fabric for the applique easier.  I did that for the clownfish, but not for the unicorn.

I also read that if you put water soluble stabilizer (wss) on over the toweling, then do the first die line stitch, it will help to keep from snagging the towel, plus help with the sinking stitches.  I did that, and then once I set the applique fabric on top of the wss, I put a 2nd piece of wss over the applique fabric.  I think it really helped the overall stitching.

Another thing I did was use Floriani sticky back stabilizer, so I didn’t have to hoop the towels.  I also floated a piece of tear away under the hoop.  So, count the layers….4 stabilizers and the applique fabric.  I only had 2 issues with the stitching where I had a thread break and had to go back and restitch.  I am really tickled with the outcome.

I decided to add a piece of that soft “tender touch” to the back after the project was done, and I cleared away as much of the tear away and sticky back as I could.  The sticky back will eventually dissolve in the washing but the tender touch will stay in place.  I don’t know if you can see it, but I stitched the tender touch to the back of the towel, as the “glue” doesn’t really stick well in my opinion. (I’ve had it peel off of a cotton t-shirt in the first washing)

inside of hooded towel

I put it on the back, stitched around the design with a straight machine stitch, then trimmed it close to the edge, then pressed it in place.  This will keep the back of the design from scratching little faces and bodies.

I chose some other designs for the “undersea” towel to put along the edges –

Undersea motif hooded bath towel

The fish on the right is from Designs by JuJu – “Sassy Fish”.  I purchased that several years ago and don’t find it available now.  There were 22 steps in that little design, 6 fabrics.

Sassy Fish

They have a LOT of great designs, that would have worked well for this project.  I love Designs by JuJu  and have used many designs in the past.

The crab applique is from OhMyCS.  I had a challenge with it, because I did not cut the applique fabric perfectly. It came a little low and did not catch in the tack down stitching around the eyes.  I ended up adding some extra stitching on my sewing machine to catch the raw edges.  Also, the design had so many curves, I could not trim it well.  I figured those bits will ‘fray’ in the washer and give it “character”, so it will turn out ok.

Feeling crabby

Overall, I think they turned out cute.  Trimming applique on towels is a real BEAR! I left the wss in place when I started trimming, but removed it “too soon” I think.  Not perfect, but it “is a bath towel” and it “WILL” fray and still look ok. (Trying not to obsess any longer……where are my snippers…….breathe…..)

I am second guessing my “ribbon” decision, and may have to replace it “down the road” if it doesn’t stand the test of time.  I could not find any other unicorns that would work on the white towel.  (Next time I would choose a colored towel I think!)  Again….trying to stop obsessing……..

Unicorn towel and floral ribbons

Anybody that makes these to sell gets my respect!  If I was to make them and put in a “craft sale”, I wouldn’t charge less than $50 a piece, as there is a lot of time in the embroidery, and construction.   Then of course, I would be obsessing……looking for absolute perfection.

These were made with two “medium quality” bath towels from Big Lots, and one hand towel.   Of course, they are “priceless” in my opinion because I am making them for one of the grandchildren!

Time to deliver this afternoon!

Back to quilting……………what are you working on?

 

Autumn Jubilee – circa 2016

In my last post I mentioned I was would be working on my Autumn Jubilee 2016 placemats during my sewing time at the Material Girls Quilt Bee.  I am HAPPY to report that I have completed 4 placemats in this project.  But not, AT the bee.  

Doesn’t seem like much of an accomplishment really, since I have been piddling with them since January or February.  Once a month this Material Girls Quilt Bee gathers, and we sew.  I decided to keep a ‘project in a box’ ready to grab and go.  Every month I would make 2 or 3 more leaves.  In August, I had enough leaves together for 4, and made some choices about the border fabrics when I came home, I got the borders on.  I wrote about it on this post –  Still play with Autumn Jubilee

Since our last gathering in August I just needed to assemble the backs and quilt. We didn’t sew in September, so the box has been languishing on the floor under my design wall.  And I had totally forgotten what was and wasn’t done!  (I really should read my own blog!)

As I went to “pack up my gear” for the bee, I had to look at what was in the box, where I was at on the project etc, since I hadn’t touched  it in 2 months.  So,  Tuesday (after I finished my Grandma’s kitchen blocks)  I got the box off the floor and took a hard look.  I re-discovered the backs were made and pinned to the front with so I didn’t have to even think about which back went with which top. (They are all unique).  I just needed to dig out the batting and QUILT.  I used batting pieces that were wide scraps, some of it pieced with that great Pellon tape.   I even managed to quilt one before I packed the car!  The remaining ones were all pined, and I left all four at home to finish “after” the bee.  (Disclaimer – one has been completely finished for MONTHS)

So, what did I work on during the bee?  I took my Autumn Jubilee box (now neatly sorted and organized) and made some more stems, and half square triangles, and built 2 more leaves.  I do have enough parts in that box for at least another 4 placemats.  (This should keep me going at the bees for another few months!)  I do like to have a project that doesn’t require great amounts of concentration while all the conversation is going on all around.  I’ve got all those parts, so why not!

When I got home, after the bee, I unpacked and decided I was going to finish the quilting on the remaining 2, and that went quickly.  I’m not sure you can see the quilting but I did a spiral from the center out over the leaves, then straight line walking foot in the borders.

I made the binding for all of them, and started putting it on.  Each placemat has different binding, to coordinate with one of the border fabrics.  I used my favorite method, Susie’s Magic Binding.

I ran into a snag.  I would get to the “corner” of my binding and my stitches were not “locking”.  I had a 1/2” or inch of space where the top thread and bobbin thread did not lock. I fussed, and fussed and fussed.  Thread changed, bobbin changed, needle changed, machine cleaned, bobbin race cleaned and still no stitches.  I must have tried 15 times and no luck. (Seam ripper engaged numerous times to take out the excess). I reverse sides, I changed tactics and started in the middle stitching to the corner etc. AGGRAVATED & getting cranky when things don’t go right!  (Does that happen to you??)   I knew it had to do with the thickness in the corner, but could not figure out a solution.  I gave up on Wednesday night and quit.

Chatting with my hubby on Thursday he suggested a different TYPE of needle.  I put in a heavy duty needle and sailed right through the corners!  (I love his fresh perspective and that he understands sewing!) This is what happens to me when you are TRYING so hard to finish something!  (FUN FACTOR GONE….you know!)

So, Thursday afternoon, I bound all of the placemats and declared DONE (for now).  We even used 2 of them at dinner last night!!

4 finished Autumn Jubilee 2016 placemats

Each one has different borders and backing.  Here is a peak at the back side.

Autumn Jubilee 2016 placements

I love fall fabric, and my favorite is the top left, as it has a shimmering gold through out.  Note, all of these fabrics for the backs, and the leaves on the front, the borders etc were “scraps”.  Amazing amount of variety.  No “new” fabric was used in the creation of this very scrappy project, and no “new batting” was used either!

The original pattern was by Carole – From My Carolina Home on her blog in 2016.  I’m not sure if it is still available, but she has a new pattern out for Autumn Jubilee 2017, so go check her out – https://frommycarolinahome.wordpress.com/

Do you have any projects languishing?

Small projects this week

This week was time for smaller projects.  I had the chance to spend some time in Ocean Pines Maryland earlier in the week with an embroidery group.  I invited two friends of mine to come along, and they were welcomed and felt that the time was well spent.

Every time I go, I learn something about hooping, alignment, stabilizing etc.  The group leader, Anna, is a wealth of knowledge.  I was able to do a little “show & tell” of the project I did the last time I attended.  We had embroidered “crab bibs”, and I finished the sewing in the interim.  These are “full size adult bibs”; which I will gift to some friends at Christmas.

Crab Bibs

The bibs are 2 layers of fabric, so should help keep the clothing underneath clean while those wonderful blue crabs are consumed.  I kept a paper pattern of the bib, in case I want to make them again.

Crab for bib

This was a fun summer time project.

As I got ready for this weeks gathering, I decided I would go for a fall theme.  I had downloaded this great, free (this month only) design from Embroidery Library -Autumn Elegance Deer #M15361, 12464 stitches. (Size is 3.87″x 3.18″).  The shirt is a golden brown, and I decided to go a bit lighter with the body of the deer so it didn’t get lost on the shirt.

TShirt

I love “FINISHING” a project when I start something new.  Now, I just need for the Fall weather to settle in….after next week.  I took with me another long sleeve t-shirt, in red.  I never got it stitched, but it is ready to go with stabilizer already on.  I am hoping to get a design loaded in and have it stitched out this weekend.

My other project this week was the log cabin cross banner.  I have it finished, ready to gift.  I used my “oops” blocks on the back of the banner.  I thought it would be fun to include them.  I quilted it with “glow in the dark” white thread (40wt Superior) on the front, and silver bottom line (60 wt Superior) in the bobbin.  After I finished quilting, binding, labeling and a hanging sleeve, I ran it through the washer & dryer, and while still damp, I blocked it to make sure it squared up nicely. (Yes, that binding is Susie’s Magic Binding. I went scrappy on the yellow flange!)

blocking the banner

I use one of those old fashioned folding cardboard cutting boards and use the lines to keep things square, along with my 6×24 ruler and my 12×12 ruler for the corners.  I like to block it, because I know it is going to hang and I want it square. The cardboard cutting board is on the floor and my pins go through the cardboard, the carpet and into the wood under the rug. I set a floor fan to blow across the project so it dries completely overnight.

Here is a peak at the label I made on my embroidery machine.  I like to fuse it to the back of the quilt, and catch 2 edges under binding. The other two sides get hand stitched.

Banner label

I did a hanging sleeve that will hold up to a 4″ rod.  I like to put the sleeve on before I do the binding, so it is nicely held under the binding edge.  Of course, the sides and bottom of the sleeve are hand stitched down.

Back of Log cabin cross banner

Other fun stuff this week include making bags for the food bank to use over the holidays, when they pass out large items (like turkeys).  I’ve finished 2, and have 3 more cut out and ready to sew. I am using donated upholstery / decorator fabric which is VERY sturdy.   They are also very colorful bags!  I hope to have all 5 ready when I go to Helping Hands Quilt Guild on Monday evening.

What are your weekend plans??  I hope you have a chance to do a little sewing and enjoy your hobbies.

 

 

Block 12 and other bits and pieces

Welcome to new readers! I have had several new followers this week, and I haven’t written anything. It’s that busy Quilt Guild meeting week syndrome.  We had our “first meeting” of the fiscal year on Monday at Ocean Waves Quilt Guild in Lewes DE where the new officers were “sworn in”, and it was membership renewal time.  Guess who is one of the co-chairs?  Yes…..(hard word to stop saying)…..At least I am sharing the job, and I don’t have a lot of “STUFF” to cart home!  We have 250+ members and over 1/2 renewed during the hour before the meeting began. Thank goodness for great volunteers, who worked the tables and who accepted checks, handed out membership cards and checked details for the roster. They did all the work while my co-chair and I helped 7 new members !  So exciting to see the guild continuing to grow.  If you are in our little part of the world, and you are looking for a guild, find our website Ocean Waves Quilt Guild Lewes DE.

Of course, along with the membership rosters to update, I had to “balance the books” with the receipts for the day, and spent Tuesday afternoon with the Treasurer getting checks ready for deposit. We got together at a local quilt shop, Serendipity Quilt Shop in Dagsboro DE, and filled out deposit slips etc.  Before she arrived, I did manage a little shopping.  I have a class coming up in Dover with Sandi Blackwell.  The workshop is called “Spiral Out Workshop” .  The pattern in the workshop instructions showed Christmas colors, and I decided that is what I would use as well.  I managed to get everything pre-washed, ironed, and pre-cut as instructed. It is all in a basket, and ready for Tuesday, a week from now.  Watch for that project in an upcoming blog post!  (This class is sponsored by Helping Hands Quilt Guild, Dover DE. )

Wednesday is the release for Pat Sloan’s block of the week, Grandma’s Kitchen.  This week she talked about the kitchen door leading outside from Grandma’s kitchen. Sorry, not  1 kitchen door story comes to mind.  My Grandma Bessie lived in an old fashioned trailer with a few rooms attached, and the door from the kitchen area led right out into the living room. Pat talked about setting out all your blocks and looking for colors that needed more representation if you were using more than 2 or 3 colors.  I did that before I chose my colors, but I pretty well decided after block 11 what would be next, regardless of the pattern.  I knew I wanted more yellow and more orange.

12 out of 25 Grandma's kitchen

I think there is a fair amount of red, pink blue green and purple already in the project. That yellow from block one, upper left corner, needed to be used again, and I played a bit with “which orange” to use. I wanted it to show as the “dark color”, so I chose the deeper orange.  I liked this one in particular because it had a touch of blue, and there is a lot of blue elements showing in the yellow patterns.  I used a tone on tone white floral again for the background, the same one as the “apron” block.

Block 12 of 25 Grandma's Kitchen

 

I also was able to get my applique stitching done on block 11 and block 8, since my JANOME  8900 is finally home from the repair. (She is purring like a kitten!!)  I am happy to be caught up again!

I got a chance to go on a bus trip on Thursday, with the Ocean Waves Quilt Guild, to the Pennsylvania National Quilt Extravaganza. It was held at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center in Oaks PA.  Huge place!  Lots of quilts and lots of shopping opportunity.  Since I had a “big day” shopping for fabric on Tuesday, I restrained myself.  I did pick up 3 more red 1930’s reproduction pieces.  I am saving those for another block!

I took my “list” of Superior Threads on hand/needed, and only bought 1 cone of thread, and two packs of needles at their booth.  Usually I buy in bundles of 3, to save about $3-5 per cone. I had stocked up at the Hershey show in July, so I just needed 1 color.  (Talk about restraint, I wanted one of EVERYTHING).  I did treat myself to some “1 yard cuts” of fabric from a vendor who is “getting out of the cotton and going to wool” business.  You can’t pass up $5 / yard quilt fabric.  He was also selling his fat quarters for $1.25 which is about 1/3 of the price everyone else was charging.  I did pick up a few from him.  I was shopping for floral though, and he really did not have what I wanted in fat quarters.  I did find a vendor that had just what I was looking for, and I got 8 or 10. I then found another “bundle” at that same dealer, that had a lovely collection, and I couldn’t resist. No self restraint there.

My plan for the floral fabric is another log cabin cross wall hanging. I did all the cutting on Friday.  On Saturday, I managed to get 2 rectangular sections made. Then, I realized I had done 2 identical units, and they needed to be opposing units.  BIG SIGH.  The pattern I am following is one I have made twice before. You would have thought I would know better. I guess, since it was 2 years ago, I can forgive myself.  Last time I made this pattern, I wrote about it here –  New Log Cabin Cross Banner .

Oh well, I cut more fabric, and made different fabric choices too.  Before I started cutting more fabric, I decided to eliminate the pinks, and went with yellows.  By the end of the evening Sunday, I have the top ready to layer and quilt.  I’m much happier with the fabric choices too.

Log Cabin Cross

Course, I still have those 2 blue & pink rectangle log cabin blocks that I have to come up with “a plan” for.  Hubby said I should figure out how to use them on the back of this project!  Not sure about that idea, but I am sure I can ind a way to use them for something.

What did you work on this past week?  Anything exciting in the coming week???

Retirement is a time for FUN ! (and a little paper crafting)

This weekend marked the 65th birthday and the retirement of our friend, Pete – the Pilot.  (I do that with names of my husband’s train buddies. For example, some endearing names are Bob the bus driver, Biker Charlie, N Scale Ed, Paper Mill Charlie etc. Helps me to keep straight which Charlie, or which Bill or Bob we are discussing)

Anyway, our friend Pete, a pilot for American Airlines celebrated his birthday and retirement with a wonderful cocktail party at Brew River, Salisbury MD .  The restaurant sits along the Wicomico River and features local beer and seafood.  We certainly enjoyed the crab dip, the coconut shrimp and the wings seasoned with Old Bay.   The location was wonderful, and perfect for a guy like Pete, who would no doubt tie up his sailboat right along side the restaurant when need be.  We had great conversation with a couple who made taking photo’s of the event a sport!  They both did it with flair, and of course, everyone cooperated.  At the end of the evening, the card from the camera was gifted to the honoree!

Pete is a charter member of the DelMarVa Model Railroad Club, and we thought it would be fun to give him a little “memory book” with some photo’s taken over the years. Since the club was established in 1984, Pete has been pretty active.  Work of course, and sailing sometimes got in the way, be he is looking forward to pursuing his hobby with gusto in retirement.

Memory book for Pete

of course, we did have to share some wisdom —

Retirement advice

I won’t bore you with all the photo’s etc inside.  If you are curious, you can find the album here – Flickr Paper Crafting Album .

We had fun gathering the photo’s and putting the booklet together for him. It was nice to be included in his retirement celebration and to see the other facets of his life separate from the model railroader that we know.

I printed most of the photo’s in a 4×6 size, and used a 5 x 7 cardstock pad to mount them on.  The cover was made by backing  the nautical cardstock with the stripe.  Both of those came from my Nantucket paper collection. We punched two holes near the end and tied the pages together using 2 strands of bakers twine, run through twice, and tied in a bow.  I did just 3 stamp greetings on the cover, raised up on foam squares.  (I think I impressed MY hubby using some of the supplies I have been acquiring off and on for the last year!)

My sage advice to the newly retired is to go out and have fun every day!  I am constantly exploring and learning new things, and I am enjoying dabbling in card making and paper crafting too.  Last weekend I did use some of the cardmaking supplies for a project at church. I was asked to make a Capital Campaign Visual Aid, and this is what I came up with –

Capital Campaign visual aid

I knew I could get some fun things for the display at the local Dollar Tree store.  The thermometer, the 2 verses and the baskets, along with the tri-fold display all came from that store.   The baskets are mounted using a stick on velcro product that I picked up in the hardware area of Dollar Tree.  I think I invested less than $8 in the project. The rest is my own handiwork. Give me a printer and some cardstock and a tape runner and I can do something!

Speaking of Dollar Tree – that is the place to get foam mounting squares and bakers twine! I have a good supply now, but going to restock from the $1 place instead of  Michaels craft store.  I went looking for tape runner’s at Dollar tree and got two tiny ones, that let me finish the visual aid board.  I was able to restock my supply of Elmer’s at Wal Mart and discovered you can buy REFILLS for your tape runners.  That makes me very happy, and after I was finished with the project for Pete’s retirement, I was able to EASILY change out the tape runner in the Elmer’s brand holder.

Busy week ahead with the Helping Hands Quilt Guild meeting tonight, and my Queen Bees gathering tomorrow! Scrap boxes are still being sorted, only 1 left I think unless there is more hiding somewhere.  My Janome is still “in the shop” , so cleaning up, scrap sorting and general sorting is what is happening in my sewing room.

What are you doing for the big “ECLIPSE” event????  I think I will let NASA do the watching, and will view from the live feed on line.  My youngest daughter has traveled with fellow science teacher friends to a location for viewing the “TOTALITY”….oooh….aaaahhh…..  We live in a 70% zone, so won’t get the full effect.  I won’t be outside with a cardboard box on my head.   I “might” make the NASA cereal box one tho….check out this link for directions : https://eclipse2017.nasa.gov/sites/default/files/EclipseCerealBoxViewer.pdf

Still playing with Autumn Jubilee

Last fall, Carole on the blog From My Carolina Home published a pattern called Autumn Jubilee.

EDIT — I’ve been asked where to find the pattern?  HERE is a link directly to Carole’s quilt along from last fall – Leaf pattern by Carole.  NOTE- you can also go to the left side of her blog and scroll down and look for categories and select Autumn Jubilee.  She had some really great projects over the fall and you might enjoy them all.  Be sure to FOLLOW her blog, as she has something new planned for this fall! I used Carole’s leaf pattern and added 2 different 3″ strips on either side of the leaves to make the placemat.

Over the course of Autumn, I completed 4 table runners using her pattern.  I had amassed a big quantity of appropriate fabrics, and done quite a bit of “pre-cutting” and building of “bits & pieces” for pumpkins and leaf blocks.  One table runner was gifted, and I ended up keeping the other 3.  One for the dining room table and one for each of the treadle machines in the dining room.

I still had lots of “bits & pieces” left over, so I thought I should make some placemats.  Somewhere along the line, Christmas happened, and the box got put away. I pulled it back out in January to take to a quilt bee.  A fellow member of the bee had said she keeps a tote “ready to go” for the bee, and only works on the project during the bee.  A long term project, since we only meet once a month.  This was a clever idea, and I decided a great way to work on these placemats, with no particular deadline.  Of course, everytime I open the container, I have to “rethink” the project.  “How many more half-square triangles do I need, etc?” Today was no exception.

I got busy building more blocks, and finally, by August I had enough done, that I could put together 4 placemats. This one you might have seen in a January post,

The "original" placemat

but here are the rest.

Placemat using my Autumn Jubilee leaves

Placemat#3

Placemat # 4

They still need to be layered, quilted and bound, but the “hard work” is finished.

I can’t quilt until I get my Janome back from the repair shop, so it will still be a while before they are finished.  Each placemat has the common theme of the leaf centers, but the border fabrics are all unique, and the backing fabric will match the outer border.

Long range, my goal is 8 placemats, so it will probably be next August before I bore you again with the last 4! These have been fun to make.

Thanks again to Carole – From My Carolina Home for the cute pattern !

In keeping with the overall scrappiness of the blocks, I just “had” to make the borders on each one a little different.  Would that drive you crazy?