Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Finished Quilts: 2 More Prayer Quilts

I thought about calling this post "Quilts, Sunshine, Blue Skies, Fluffy White Clouds."  It is a gorgeous day, although we seem to be headed for the mid-90's.  Right now it's only 90, so I snapped some pictures of the latest prayer quilt completions.
 This is one of the quilts I was debating about how to quilt a couple of weeks ago.
 I thought it would be a good place to do some more flowing feathers.
 This is one of the quilts Judy pieced and handed on to me.
 They show up in these photos thanks to New Mexico Sunshine. I confess that they didn't show up nearly as well while I was quilting them. (Please be advised that if you choose to check on the NM sunshine, you may find a forecast for showers; it's the monsoon season, after all.  However, the showers are missing my house--even when they surround us on three sides!)
 I quilted this entire quilt in a Fil-Tec Glide green that sings of the 1930's, as do these repro fabrics.  Regular readers know that Glide is my favorite thread for quilting; it's a trilobal polyester that maintains wonderful tension (both upper and lower) and is a joy to work with.  (Embroiderers like it too.)
 I tried some different things in the sashing between the strips of pieced blocks.
 I think I made some improvement in my ability to quilt these kinds of feathers.
 This is another Judy and Dora joint project.  When Judy said she wasn't sure how to quilt this one, I suggested she quilt the pieced blocks so I could practice more flowing feathers in the print blocks and borders.
  When I saw this quilt, I knew I didn't want to quilt the entire thing, but I did want to try more of those flowing feathers.
 Judy quilted flowing ribbons in the pieced blocks.
 I quilted flowing feathers everywhere else.
 I used a different color of Fil-Tec Glide in each solid block.
 Sorry, you'll probably have to be close enough to fondle the quilt in order to see the different colors.
 I think the different colors of thread will help hold the interest of someone who is ill and limited in activity.

 Both quilts will go to our church's Victory Prayer Quilt ministry.  Judy will add the label and the binding, and, most likely, another church member will sew it to the back.
These feathers take more time than a lot of the other kinds of feathers I quilt because portions of the tips of the feathers are retraced, and I need to further develop my skill in those areas.

Quilted on Necchi Nova BU in 1919 treadle irons.  I'm wondering if I should do some tutorials on quilting on vintage and antique machines.  People think they must be harder to use, but to me they feel easier to use, and they are much quieter than machines with tails.

I'm linking to:
Fresh Poppy Design

Quilts Are For Giving

Lily's Quilts

...where you will find more quiltmakers sharing lovely creations.

Happy quiltmaking....

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Finished Quilt: No Calorie Butterscotch, Caramel, & Chocolate

While I've made countless quilts over the last 30+ years, some quilted by hand, some quilted by machine, this quilt contains some "firsts."
 I think it may be the first full sized quilt my friend Shelli has pieced. (It was made from a printed pattern, but I can't remember the designer or the name of the pattern.  It does look much like one from Bonnie Hunter's patterns on her Quiltville blog.  Shelli made it from a couple batik jelly rolls, a batik backing, and used black Quilter's Dream Request batting.)
When Judy and I saw the top a few weeks ago, I said, "I'd love to quilt that."
Judy said, "Yes, you should."
Shelli said, "I'll let you."
So, during June's Friday Night Sewing, Shelli and I layered and basted it.
 It's the first quilt I've quilted that was 100% batiks, even the backing.
 More significantly, it's the first quilt I've quilted with nothing but feathers. Feathers, feathers everywhere. And, except for the next photo, the colors have been captured more accurately than I've been able to before.  I'm sure it helped to be able to take it outside.
Of course I used Fil-Tec Glide thread in a favorite gold color (bright gold 80137).
Shelli's picking it up on her way home tonight.  I do hope Brent loves the quilting as much as he liked the top!  Addendum: Both Brent and Shelli stopped by on their way home.  He's thrilled with the quilt. I'm thinking if I had some butterscotch, caramel, and chocolate right now, I'd eat it, calories and all!  I do love the quilt now that it's done.  I don't know why I had so much trouble with those colors when they were up close!
Quilted on a vintage Necchi BU in 1919 treadle irons.
Yes, those are breezes stirring the quilt--we had at least an inch of rain yesterday evening at my house (although our little airport is still saying 0" of rain for the month of July).  We do have flash flood warnings, and cloudy skies, and I counted about six drops of rain earlier, and am still hopeful for more.  I was able to get some weeds out of the ground early this morning, and hope to get some more this evening.
Linked to....
Sarah's Whoop Whoop

Amy Lou Who's Sew and Tell Friday

Richard and Tanya's Link a Finish Friday (Sorry.  His code and icon have disappeared from his side bar [and mine, for that matter].

and Cindy's new linky party (although this is not really random)
Live A Colorful Life
I hope you'll find plenty of inspiration from the links is those parties!

Happy quiltmaking......

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

New Quilt Visitors and How to Lower Feed Dogs on Singer 15-88 thru 91

I have some new quilts visiting me, although, technically, they are not quilts yet.  Adding the quilting to these quilts for our prayer quilt ministry will be my job...
 a job for which I happily volunteered, because Judy makes such interesting quilts...
 that will surely be a blessing to the recipient.
Of course, these quilts join several other quilts that are visiting at the moment.

I've been asked where to lower feed dogs on a vintage Singer 15-88 thru 91. Here's my Singer 15-88/90.  (It came with a motor but was in a  treadle so that it could be used either with or without electricity.  I removed the motor and gifted it to Moriarty's Old Sewing Machine Guy.)
To get to the feed dog lowering apparatus, I first disengaged the treadle belt so I could raise the machine.
 You can see the large rod and the large screw to the right of the feed dogs.
This is the screw that needs to be loosened and glided forward so that the feed dogs will drop.
I'm not sure it had been used since the machine was purchased in 1936, so I had to apply quite a bit of Tri-flow, let it sit, and then gently work it loose.  (I strongly advise against using something like WD-40, because once it loosens, it dries and gets very sticky so that nothing will move.)  One of my friends took a hammer to hers and tapped it to get it loose--I'm not sure how good an idea that would be, although it worked for her.)  Once the screw is loose and everything is working smoothly, raising or lowering the feed dogs is just a matter of tightening or loosening this screw.

Many other Singer models do not have this capability. I read last night that the 201 was considered a seamstress's/dressmaker's machine and the 15/88-91s were considered "The Farmer's Wife" machines.  I think that might be a myth.

I have no therapy appointments today, so I'm hopeful that I will accomplish a great deal.
We're continuing to pray for rain.  We had clouds, lightning, thunder, and rain on three sides of us yesterday, but nary a drop here.  In fact, in Albuquerque there were even some flash floods.  On my way to an appointment yesterday, my windshield was hit by *one* big, fat drop of rain.  That was it.
When I was young, I marveled at how the old farmers' conversations were filled with much talk of the weather.  Now that I'm getting old myself, I find the weather the subject of my thoughts too.

I'm going to link to Esther's WIPs on Wednesdays as well as Freshly Pieced so you can find and comment on a lot of lovely projects by other quiltmakers.

Happy Quiltmaking....

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Little Feathery Quilting Diversion

Feathers are coming along on Brent's butterscotch, caramel, and chocolate quilt.  However, I'm still struggling with trying to work on it for extended periods of time.  So, inspired by the Nifty Stitcher, I sought some diversion--just to see if I could do it.

 I practiced the feathers on a fat quarter I've had for years--I thought it would look great on the loveseat in our media room.  (No, we are not so fancy that we have a real media room in this little house--I just don't like having a television in our living room, so a couple of years ago we moved our television into the third bedroom that also served as home for our computer and armoir [that I now need to move out of there].)

Here's the backside--so you can see how I struggled with trying to work out a style that used the kinds of feathers I've been making.  I finally opted for the style Rhianon and Karen McTavish use.

Obviously, I still need to practice retracing (much easier on a treadle than on an electric machine) and decide how much I want to fill in between feathers.

The need for rain continues to be a focus of many prayers.  Yesterday I was hopeful because of the number of clouds and lightning in the distance.  Several hours later we heard plenty of thunder and received about five drops of rain.  I did manage to pull some more weeds, but there are places where I'm going to have to resort to some other alternatives.
 I love the color of these blue morning glories--but even in a pot they are not doing all that well.
I found some more growing along one of the fences, but I'm thinking they may not bloom this year.  The sunflowers are growing quickly, but I don't know if they will bloom either.  Ditto for the cosmos.

I'm linking to Connie Kresin's Quilting by the River
and Fabric Tuesday.

Fresh Poppy Design

Happy quiltmaking.....

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Quilt Progress: Happy Trails

Not much time quilting....
 I've finished quilting the colored trail. I'm quilting it on my treadled Necchi BU (from the late 1940's in 1919 irons).
 I love the way gold thread looks on so many quilts.  I'm using a gold  Fil-Tec Glide (from bobbincentral.com), 80137 Bright Gold.  I love the way it glistens and shines on quilts.
I am going to spend some time tickling Brent's gold, caramel, and chocolate quilt with colliding feathers this evening too.
The monsoons have brought some moisture to quite a few places in the state.  I'm praying we get some rain this evening--because I really need to pull some more weeds, and it's been much too long since we had some rain at my house (although last Wednesday there were huge puddles at the post office a mile away!) I hope we will be a bit luckier this weekend.

I'll link to:

Sarah's Whoop Whoop

and Plum and Jane 

,,,where you will find links to the projects of other quilters and sewists.

Happy quiltmaking....

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