Saturday, January 31, 2015


I have a problem.  I create UFOs (unfinished projects).  More than is necessary.  I blame other quilt makers and quilt shops.  I see and then I want to sew.  Even when there are quilt blocks a plenty waiting to become a quilt top, I start another.  My goal in 2015 is to get a grip on my ever expanding UFOs.

All People Quilt started the "UFO Challenge 2015" a month ago.  I also like to make lists, so I thought that this just might work.  It is pretty simple.  Print off the sheet from APQ web site, list a UFO project, one for each of the 12 months of the year, and wait for APG to give you a number at the beginning of each month.  January became the month to work on UFO #4.

On my list the Swoon Quilt I began over two years ago was #4.

I purchased a kit from American Quilting in Orem, Utah with a discount coupon.  I didn't even realize it was a take on Camille Roskelly's famous "Swoon" pattern until I got it home and explored the contents of my kit.  In the store, I just loved all that red, white, and blue made into stars and how cute it looked on their antique bed.

My kit included what I thought were 24 fat quarters, a Swoon pattern, a list of supplies needed, a whole bunch of Kona cotton, and binding fabric.

I was soon cutting, oh, so carefully, my fat quarters to get the right amount of squares and rectangles from each of two fat quarters for each block.  I made six.  Life happened and I put my six 24 1/2 inch blocks away in a dresser drawer until later.  It turned out to be much, much later.

The Swoon pattern called for nine completed blocks.  When I reopened the project box for January's UFO, I counted 12 more fat quarters not six.  To be bed sized I guessed that this quilt kit must make a 3 by 4 block quilt, 80 by 104 inches instead of a square 80 by 80 inch quilt.

I cut and stitched and cut and stitched six more blocks and then something terrible happened.  All that Kona cotton had disappeared without sashing being cut!  Did I in a time long, long ago decide to make a different size quilt and add more fat quarters?  I was now on the hunt for more Kona cotton the correct color.  JoAnn's had a 60% of coupon for fabric but had just a small piece not quite the right color called Bone.  The Cotton Shop was having a sale on Kona Cotton at 20% off.  Same problem, a small amount not quite the right color once again Bone.  What to do, what to do?

My solution:  Continue the Kona cotton hunt, perhaps at American Quilting.  Take the three extra blocks and add six more!  Buy lots more Kona cotton and make two 80 by 80 inch quilts.  Pull them out for the use of the grand kids who end up on the two Aero Beds on the 4th of July week.  Much better than the ugly bottom of the stack quilts or blankets they usually get.

Now I'm waiting to use the February coupon at the Cotton Shop for "buy 2 get 1 free fat quarters" to add to the red, white, or blue fabrics I found in my leftover fabric stack.  I have added another UFO!  I have six more blocks to make.  It never ends!

Saturday, January 24, 2015

French General Heart

I love Valentine's Day.  I love red and red hearts, heart shaped sugar cookies, and Valentines (especially vintage looking ones.)  I was looking through a box of precuts for help with another project and came across three matching 2 1/2 inch  Candy packs of French General which I've had for years.  My brain said, "Count how many reds are in those packs."  There were enough to make a heart with a bit of sparkle here and there.  The lighter 2 1/2 inch squares made up the background.  I was short 24 squares but was able to cut those from leftover pieces of other French General fabrics I had.


I made 18 HST to create the heart shape.

 I used the 16 HST leftovers to make the corner border blocks.

All of the borders were made from fabrics I had on hand.  The wider red border was from a piece of FG Chateau Rouge that I had picked up to bind another quilt.  Now I will have to find another binding.

Chateau Rouge, thanks for inspiring me!

This wall hanging size quilt is 32 by 36 inches.

I had a piece of leftover batting but I bought some gray backing. I quilted it on my sewing machine.

I also bought a third yard of that cute tone on tone gray houndstooth fabric for the binding.  The finished project I then gifted to my daughter to decorate for Valentine's Day in her new old house.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Soldier Hollow

This morning I headed up Provo Canyon to Heber City to help my daughter.  Her boys' new school includes skiing and she had volunteered to help on skiing day.  I committed to spend an hour or two with my granddaughter once a week while she skied.

On my ride back to Provo, I detoured by the boys' school because that is where all the winter time action is happening.

I wanted to see the ice castle in person.

I wanted to confirm that the snow machines were doing their part.

I wanted to check out the snow tubing slopes.

And there is the main (former Olympic venue) school building.

This was also the site for the Dirty Dash that I blogged about here.

This is where the cross country skiers like to ski.  Notice the Olympic banner on the left hand side of the picture.  Hard to believe that all that Olympic excitement was 15 years ago.

On the way back down the canyon to home, I just had to pull over and take a picture or two of the east side of Mt. Timpanogos.  That is Deer Creek Reservoir in the foreground.

I can't believe that all this beauty is just a half hour away.  Don't you just love the contrail in the blue, blue sky?

Friday, January 16, 2015

Provo City Center Temple in Winter

I had to go to the post office yesterday so took my camera as well.  The post office parking lot is right next to the construction site of the Provo City Center Temple.

As you can see the roof is on but once again the building is wrapped for winter so that the workmen can be a bit warmer.

The snow on the mountains made a monochromatic scene.

The Provo Tabernacle had a fire in December 2010.  It gutted the building which is now being rebuilt as a temple.  There is a juxtaposition between old and new at this site as the modern glass NuSkin building sits to the west.

I shot this picture through the fence.  It used to be chain link but now is concrete and very high.  I just held the camera up and hoped for the best.  That building will be a place for friends and family to wait for newly married couples to exit the temple.

Atop the new concrete fence are this wooden forms.  Not sure what that means.

That is the Utah County Building which sits just east of the temple.  I often wonder if the temple will finally be completed during 2015.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

111 Farmer's Wife Sampler blocks finished!!

For the last year I have been working on the Farmer's Wife Sampler Quilt using the rotary cutting instructions posted on Craftsy by Karen Walker.  Each month there would be a new pattern set available to make about 10 more 6 1/2 inch blocks.  The above set of blocks are from Class 11.

The book includes 111 block patterns.  As Karen led us through the year, she would group block sets according to like techniques.  As she got to the end, the last few blocks would have to be made using templates or paper piecing.  Karen was offering a dozen look like blocks using her rotary cut methods.  I really struggled with which way to go, true to book or rotary cut like the rest.  Finally, I realized that the book had been the guide but the methods used very different so I opted to stay with Karen to the end.  The above are the blocks I selected from the 12 she offered.  It was a bit of a challenge as my fabric stack was getting thin.  There were generous amounts of the "fruit" fabrics from the Pickett Fence by Chloe for Moda fabric line I had been using, so I used it for many of these blocks but they will be scattered throughout the quilt.

This is what 111 blocks look like bundled in tens and laid in a row.  I have Kona Snow under the blocks which I will use it for sashing and the blue yardage will be used for the cornerstones and an accent border.

The busy block at the front stands alone as a group of one.

I am excited to see how this quilt top comes together.  Those blocks have been a year long labor of love.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Christmas Quilty Fun Sew Along finishes

Back in November I joined Lori Holt's Christmas Quilty Fun Sew Along using her book "Quilty Fun."  You can see more about my start here.  It was a great scrap project and I only had to buy a bit of Christmas fabric including this all things Christmas backing fabric and peppermint stripe binding fabric to make this fun sampler quilt.

I finished it in early December and hung it in front of the drafty fireplace insert just as I had been doing with smaller quilts all year.  In fact, one of my goals for the New Year of 2015 is a different quilt for each month for this spot. 

It looked great hanging below my Santa collection.  When I took it down yesterday I added the final touch. 

Lori also designed a label for the back as she often does for her quilts.

Isn't it cute?  Everyone else thought so as well and soon there were Quilty Fun little snowmen mini quilts popping up on Lori's Instagram sew along account.  I loved that little snowman and decided that he would be the start of my January fireplace quilt.

Once again, this was a scrappy project.  The new fabrics I bought included the darling snowy vintage house fabric from the UK for the backing, the vintage looking floral for the outside border, and the little blue star (snowflake) sprinkled on white used for the sashing and borders.  I used the leftovers from the snowman backgrounds for the chubby chevron border which is also in Lori's "Quilty Fun" book.

Honestly, isn't that ribbon like border just the cutest.  If you cut carefully, you can cut the snowman backgrounds from a 10" square layer cake piece.  I used two, the red and darker green, that I already had on hand to max out the nine blocks I wanted to make using smaller prints and designs.

The 8 1/2 inch blocks were sashed with 2 1/2 inch wide fabric strips.  I fussy cut 2 1/2 inch squares from the house fabric for the posts.  The outer border is 3 inches.  I made sure that the quilt was not wider than my directional backing fabric.

When the top was finished, I just knew it needed to be bound in yellow.  Fortunately, I had some left from my Aunt Grace's Flower Garden quilt.

It worked well as some of my snowmen backgrounds were also leftovers from my Aunt Grace quilt.

I love having this cheerful quilt during wintery January.

It makes me happy every time I look at it.

I machine quilted it on my sewing machine.

I also machine zig zagged the snowmens' eyes, nose and arms as Lori had suggested.  When I made that first label, I hand embroidered those features.

I couldn't resist closeups of the houses.

Don't you just love all the snow and other details.

Which house would you pick?

I loved them all with the decorated trees and cheerful lit windows.

One more for the fireplace!