Sunday, December 29, 2013

Celtic Solstice~Split Triangle Unit ~ Clue 5

No one is more surprised than I am that I am finished with this weeks clue the Sunday before the next Friday clue!    I am usually much better at procrastination.

For this weeks clue, we had to use the HST's from one of the previous clues.  The needed a little squaring up.  Annabelle was slacking on the supervising.
I woke up early the day of the clue and was so excited to get started!  I printed off the directions and started reading them before I got my coffee.  I read them...and re-read them...and read them one more time.  They made no sense.  Why was Bonnie talking about pressing and seams before she even told us what we were making??  Did she write this in an eggnog induced stupor?
I stapled the directions backwards.

I blame it on the lack of caffeine.

Along with the HST's, we cut big blue triangles and little ones from the neutral (black for me.)  Sewn together like the one above. 

Some of the math wizards on the facebook group have been trying to solve the puzzle through calculation. 
The have come up with some amazing analysis and possible solutions.
I am more of a randomly pick up squares from the box and try to fit them together kind a girl.

Have I said this is going to be one bright quilt?

See the rest of this weeks linkies:
 (and I wasn't last this week! woot!)

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Celtic Solstice Finishing up the Baby Pinwheels and 4 patches ~ Clues 3 & 4

At the end of the last blog post, I had just finished my HST for Bonnie Hunter's Celtic Solstice Clue 3.  The next thing is to sew them together as pinwheels with the orange spinning clockwise. 
Chief helping me finger press two sides of the pinwheels.

One of the things I learned from this clue was to "spin" my center seams in the back of the pinwheel. To do this you need to take out the top two stitches of the seam sewn second to last (in black)  The last sewn seam connecting the two halves is in green.

Then when you open it up, looks like this.  Hopefully.  
This will make the center of your pinwheel lay flat and be easier to quilt.
And a good video to watch (Eleanor): 
the part about spinning the seam is at 22:45

I listened to A Christmas Carol while I spun all this little pinwheel seams! 

They are so pretty!

Yes, Chief wants to be in every picture.
The next clue was four patches.  Bonnie was taking it easy on us this week.
I finally got to use my strip cutting guide.  I have had it for years and never used it.  It works great and made the four patches go so much faster.

and spun some more seams.

while watching Emma  
(oh Mister Knightley, I am so sorry I am such a brat! Please marry me anyway! )
And they are all done and packed away in their pretty little box for safe keeping.
Waiting for clue 5 in the morning...
Check out the other linkys (linkies? linkees?) here:

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

A Very Geeky Christmas Card.

Click the link above to see my Christmas card to everyone!  It has nothing to do with quilting or gardens or cooking or anything else usually on this blog.  I have been hiding my geekiness well from you all.

I made it using CSS3/HTML5 animation. If you are interested in the geeky side of its creation, ask. I would be happy to share. What you are seeing is generated by computer code. The only actual images are the snowflakes in the background and the little hearts.

It needs to be viewed in a "modern" browser, preferably Chrome, but does okay in current IE or passably in firefox and opera. No idea how it will look on your phone or ipad. If you see snowman body parts flying around, you probably need to try a different browser  Chrome works best...really.

Edit: my niece just said it works fine on her IPad, and I have heard it works on smart phones, too.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Celtic Solstice Chevrons (say that 3 times fast!) and Baby Pinwheels ~ Week 3

For me, week 3 of Bonnie Hunter's Celtic Solstice was actually finishing step 2  and starting step 3. these adorable little chevrons!  Since I was using mainly fat quarters, I followed the strip piecing method shown here.  Reminder to future self, these links won't work after Ms. Hunter's book comes out...check your folders.  This blog is mainly to help me remember what I did, so my notes may be a little cryptic.  If you have a question, leave me a message and I will try to help.  

Strips are cut to 1 5/8" and sewn together with the green in the center.  I used fat quarter length and got 6 chevron halfs per strip set. 

Then I used my little easy angle to cut off the tips.  Each side should measure 2 x 3.5"

Watch a good show while you are doing this...
Press one side toward neutral, one side toward yellow and the middle open.

The neutral fabric goes at the bottom of the chevron. 
I laid them out in stacks to be sure I sewed them together correctly.

Step one and two on my border fabric. 

Boxed up and put away for safe keeping.  Like quilt candy!  There is a lot of work in those little squares.
For the HSTs, I used the magic 8 technique.  I used 5" squares to allow a little fudging and squaring up.  Place right sides together and draw lines diagonally across the back of the lighter fabric.  Then sew scant 1/4" on either side of those lines.

Cut apart vertically, horizontally, and then between the drawn diagonal lines.

This gives you these little beauties.

I still have the pinwheels to put together.  Chief is keeping them safe for me until then.
(Yes, when he got up, he had little HST stuck to his belly!)

To see the other linkys, check here:

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Annabelly and Sunbeams

So grateful for a warm, dry home on this cold rainy day! This is Annabelle watching sunbeams yesterday. I was so surprised when the camera picked them up!

Monday, December 09, 2013

Mystery Update! Got clue one done!

Okay, almost done.  I still have to trim off the dog ears and re-sew a couple that are too wonky even for me to accept.  This is going to be one colorful quilt!  I love that Bonnie is getting me to push my color choices.  Hoping to get step two cut today.

Check out everyone's progress on the quiltville linky page.

Sunday, December 01, 2013

Leaders and Enders & Quarter Inch Challenged

Almost ready!  Just have to separate into darks and lights.

I seem to be quarter inch seam allowance challenged.  So, I got one of these dohickies from Bonnie Hunt's website to help me.  Keeping my fingers crossed that it will help me be more accurate.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Mystery Quilt: Fabric Choice (better late then never)

Today is the official start of the Bonnie Hunters Celtic Solstice Mystery Quilt along!  

She has a linky for everyone to share their progress here.  Very cool way to see how everyone is coming along! (and know that everyone else is way ahead of you! lol )

Since I am waiting on my tri-recs to arrives, I re-did my fabric choices...again. I decided to be brave and use orange. I found a yard of this underwater print in my stash and decided it would make a great fabric to base my color scheme on. I am using shades of solid blue/blue green as my neutral and then red,orange, yellow, and green. Still need more of all of them, but it's a start.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Christmas Quilts -Part One

I have been getting back into quilting...big time.  Here's the first of the Christmas quilts.  I was at our LQS and picked up a fat eighths bundle of this:

It's BasicGrey's Fruitcake for Moda. I think it's a few years out of date.  I know the yardage is getting harder to find.  I got it home, laid it out on the cutting table, and just stared at it for a few weeks.  I tried to find patterns for fat eighths, and there just aren't that many of them.  I ended up cutting the eighths into 9.5 inch squares, and treating them like two layer cakes.  This led to making two smaller quilts instead of one big quilt. Which is a good thing because they will be much easier to quilt.

I decided to go with a simple pinwheel for the first quilt. 
It was interesting trying to pair up the colors together to create a good contrast and balance.  Once I had the pairs together, I followed the HST tutorial here:   You match up your large squares, sew all the way around the edge and then cut the square in fourths diagonally. (Just watch the video...) I think I will do the chevron shown in the tutorial for the other Christmas quilt. end up with HST (half square triangles) I am not that great at keeping my seam allowance exactly 1/4" So I have to square up all my squares.  Which means cutting off little tiny slivers of fabric. Until you end up with a pile like this:
It was at this point I remembered a conversation with a good friend of mine at a quilting class.   She told the teacher that I was the perfectionist between us.  I vehemently denied being a perfectionist! I have the cat hair tumbleweeds in my family room to prove it!  Okay, looking at this pile of tiny slivers, maybe I am a little bit of a perfectionist, but only in important quilting and painting.  

Chief was watching, so I had to get it right.
( I love how the iron gives him a third ear!)

After all that trimming, I crossed my toes and sewed the pinwheels together.   
And LOOOK!!!!
All that trimming was worth it! My points match!  They really match! Almost all of them mostly do!
This is what I have so far.  I will ad another border or two, but haven't decided what yet.
 I need to get a better photo of it outside.