Sunday, June 26, 2022


 Wisteria Lane is a project I have been working on for years.  It has had many starts and stops for the last 7 years.  Once the project was actually completed all it needed was quilting.  Now there is where things got really iffy for me.

This was the beginning of my journey with this piece.  I posted this on my blog in July 2015.
By January 2019 I had only gotten to the point of sewing down the edges of the brick mortar and the branch vines.
In June of 2020 I actually began to get wisteria blossoms on.
I picked up the pace and by August 2020 I had leaves and about half the appliqués on.  
I worked now and again and this was my progress in December 2021.
And by January this year I had finally finished the appliqués.
Now the issue was this has to be quilted.  That means every single one of those leaves, blossoms and some of the vines under the blossoms need to be individually quilted.  Free Motion is not my friend, I just don't get it.  I belong to Chat and Sew, a quilt group that meets monthly and asked for advice.  I was encouraged by one of the ladies.  She said if I can do machine appliqué, as nicely as she believes I do, that I can quilt this piece and to get busy before I loose my nerve and never finish it.  Long arm service was out of the question, these ladies were not going to let me get away with that. 
First things first, thread.  Between a trip into my thread stash and a quick trip to JoAnn's There is not an awful lot of thread colors required.  
I started from the top and began with the leaves.  They seemed the easiest to start.  I am using my Bernina 750 with a stitch length of 1.75.  Things are going well.  I pull the top thread ends to the back and bury them in the batting.  I used a very thin 80/20 batting, and a cotton backing.  The appliqués and red background are batiks.  
Nest step the vines and branches.  So far so good.  However, I did find I had to reduce my tension and lower my stitch length to 1.60.
There was a bit of a learning curve, as I proceeded onto smaller appliqués.  
At this point the only way forward was to tackle the blossoms.  Oh yes, I can do this.  It is going to take a while, but at this point there is no looking back.  I am dedicating to at least each day, if I am able to get into the sewing room, and work a bit on this.
With success on the lavender blossoms I am on to the blue ones.  I will be using two colored threads on this one.  At this point it is just to continue down the piece and eventually get all the appliqués done and then work on the red background.  




Sunday, June 19, 2022


This past week has been really productive.  Granddaughter, Suren and I have her first vest almost finished.  Now just to practice a couple of  button holes.  She managed on Friday to get the other three cut out along with their backs and pinned ready to start sewing the shoulder seams.  My June BOM Garden Party Down Under is finished.  So lots of time to get busy and accomplish some more on my other two projects.

June's BOM Garden Party Down Under blocks are done.  Very pleased to have finished this one off so quickly.  The best part of getting so much completed is I have been able to work on some other projects that I have going all at the same time.   

I was able to finish up the first really large panel, 18 by 42 of my Flower Pot project.  These appliqués are so much fun, and yes they are huge.  

I have a good start now on the top center block.  Lots of work left to do on these blocks, but the fabric is just so fun to work with.  
I still have the small circle appliqués to do on the right upper curved appliqué and the lower left then plan to sew on the 2 inch strips on all four sides of it.  
I got the first of the final borders on to the left side of the neutral quilt.  The right side is started then the top and bottom borders.  I have to wait to get the final four corner blossoms on when all are sewn on.  It seems to be coming together nicely.  
And yes I have ordered the kit for another project.  Our youngest daughter, the one with all the chickens, ducks, and of course those peacocks.  When I saw this kit at Intrepid Thread I just knew it was the perfect birthday gift for her 50th in January.  Plenty of time to get it done too!

Sunday, June 12, 2022


This past week I embarked on a new adventure with my granddaughter.  This spring she asked if I would assist her in making a couple of vests.  We had planned to get together while she was off on spring break but that didn't happen.  Now that she is off for the summer we set up a day to work on her project.

This is the vest she wanted to duplicate.  I figured we would buy a pattern, but she says this fits really well and she likes the style.  Well, that means we have to try to make a pattern off this vest.

It took a good part of the morning, but we managed it.  I ended up using freezer paper, ironed it on to the vest parts, traced around it then added a half inch seam allowance.  

Well here it is thus far.  It fits perfectly.  There were problems, oh yes, but we muddle through and have learned a great deal in the process.  We will meet up again next week and finish it off.

Now there is a good reason for writing this all down and making some construction changes too.  She would like 3 more made.  Only thing at this point that really worries me is making button holes.  I have a really nice Bernina 750 with a great button hole maker.  I have never used it.  The fact is I have not made any clothing of any type in 25 years.  This truly is an adventure.

The good part is that we dug out my mother in laws old button tin.  I inherited it when she passed away 19 years ago.  They were a wealth of wonderful buttons.  

For you fans of my oldest daughter's English Mastiff hounds.  Liza the 3 year old and the new pup Loki.  This photo came with Loki's weigh in this week.  All 78.8 pounds of him he is a little over 7 months old now.  Liza weighs about 125 pounds, so Loki is going to be a big boy.  I gathered from the picture they are waiting for a treat.    



Sunday, June 5, 2022


 This week I have had a bit of time to work on just my Alex Anderson Neutral quilt project.  I am glad to be done with the first round of appliquéd blossoms.  Unfortunately the outside border has tons more to do, but at least I get a bit of a break this coming week from them.  

I have the top and bottom first border on as well and will get the sides on too before stashing it away for the next week or so.  Now it is off to working on the Garden Party Down Under June BOM instructions. 

June has one pieced block and one appliquéd vase, vines, and leaves block.  One look at this pieced block with all those points that had to be lined up and not cut off made be think I was not going to do it.  Not only that, but there is not just one of these pieced blocks that has to be done, but four of them one this month and one each over the next three months.  So I have decided to make a change.  Instructions tell us to make it our own and that is what I plan to do.

I got the first one done, and given that my decision was made figured I might as well just get all four done and be a bit ahead.  I am pleased with the results.  I plan to finish the next two as well, then tackle the appliquéd block later this week.