Tuesday, July 26, 2016

MIA - Glitchy Internet

Not much from Life in Pieces due to glitchy Internet connection problems, work loads, and family stuff.  The new computer doesn't like to connect.  I've had a couple of tech service calls with Dell and am working through the issues.  The problem is not consistent and that makes it hard to pin down the problem. Add in that I've been putting in longer hours at work, there's not much to blog about anyway.   So I'll be in and out, mainly out for a bit.  

Happy Stitching. 

Monday, July 18, 2016

Weekend Stitching - Bordering on a Finished Flimsy

I'm so not ready for Monday.  It will be a busy week at work, a couple of major projects have deadlines.  One will be easy to meet, the other needs a bit more work.  Thankfully I have till Friday on the second one.

It was a pretty relaxing weekend.  Drama Teen headed to Kansas yesterday for another journalism conference.  So it was pretty quiet around here.  The perfect opportunity to spend some time in the sewing room. There was time to get the Poinsettia blocks sewn together and up on the big design wall. 

Poinsettias, By Judy Blok for the December 2013 issue of
American Patchwork and Quilting Magazine

I'm really happy with how this quilt is turning out. Poinsettias was my leader and enders project for 2 years.  So it's fun to see this project moving closer to finished. There are three borders left to add before this one is a finished flimsy. The pieces for border number one are in the process of being stitched together.  Adding borders is always such a slow process, but I'm hopeful that Poinsettias will be a finished flimsy in the next couple of weeks. 

My Vintage Dresses project reached the halfway milestone this weekend.  Twelve of the twenty five blocks are finally completed. 

 Vintage Dresses by Charise Randell

Vintage Dresses is this year's Rainbow Scrap Challenge Project.  Picking the fabrics for the dresses has been a lot of fun and my paper piecing skills have definitely improved.  Part of this weekend's sewing time was spent cutting out all the pieces for next dress.  Doubt I get it all stitched together this week, there are lots of pieces in the block. 

Linking up with
Main Crush Monday at Cooking up Quilts
Monday Making at Love Laugh Quilt
Design Wall Monday at Patchwork Times 

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Stash Report - Week 29 of 2016

It's been a pretty relaxing weekend so far.  Drama Teen is leaving today for another journalism camp, so we won't see her for a few days.  I'm working on laundry, bills and other household chores this morning, but I'll get to sew this afternoon.  

It wasn't a great week for getting things done in the sewing room.  Too many other things kept me busy, though I did manage to spend at least 15 minutes in the sewing room most nights.

Days with 15 minutes of sewing time this week:  6 out of 7 days
Days in July:  15 out of 16 days
Days in 2016:  163 out of 198 days  

Most of the time was spent cutting fabrics and searching the stash for fabrics to use in a new project, so there's not much outgoing this week. 

Used last week:  0.73 yards
Used year to date:  35.85 yards
Purchased year to date:  25.75 yards
Net used for 2016:  10.10 yards

I'm making some ground on having a net stash reduction for 2016.  The Meadow Mystery Quilt kicks off next month and that should help even more.  That's the new project that prompted the stash search. The first attempt at a palette was to use up some of  my blues, its by far the most plentiful color in the stash.  I read somewhere that blues are hard to match.  The certainly seemed to be true.  So when the blues didn't yield something useful, I raided my stash of oriental prints and then my small stash of orientals.  None of those fit the bill.   This is what I finally ended up with.  

Fabrics for the Meadow Mystery Quilt (From A to E)
Yellow and purple were the first two options for fabric A, but neither of those did anything for me.  The orange gingham brings out the orange in both of the floral fabrics, but is not a typical color choice for me. I was afraid the orange with the black would scream Halloween, but DT didn't think it would since the blacks are florals.   Both of the florals were purchased in Texas, so that means they are at least 10 years old.  The other fabrics are more recent.  I'm looking forward to staring on this mystery next month.  I did Cheryl's Midnight Mystery last year and really enjoyed it. 

That's it for me today.  Linking up with Patchwork Times today for the weekly stash report.  

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Rainbow Scrap Challenge - Half Way There

Last night Drama Teen and I stopped at Walgreen's for some necessary girly stuff.  The big seasonal aisle in the center of the store was full of school supplies.  When I pointed the aisle out to DT, she was horrified and beg me to "speak no more of it".  She very quickly dived into the candy aisle looking for the means to drive away reality with a sugar haze.  It's about 4 weeks till school starts up again.  That's hard to believe.  DT has already started on her college applications for next year.  Oh boy, not sure we are ready for that, so I think the "speak no more of it" works for me on that front.  But I'll opt for a sewing daze rather than all that sugar, it's much easier on the waistline.   

There hasn't been a lot of stitching time this week.  For some reason my new computer decided that there was no Internet, when everything else in the house could connect just fine.  After two evenings spent on the phone with Dell technical support, it appears to be working again.  Keep your fingers crossed for me that it keeps working.  Even though there wasn't a lot of time to sew, the second teal vintage dress block was finally finished last night.  

 Vintage Dresses by Charise Randell

This would be very nice dress for a summer picnic.  It's my new favorite of the set.  So both of the teal dresses for June are now finished.

I'd definitely wear either of these.  Since these two dresses bring me to the halfway point it seemed like a good idea to put everything up on the design wall and check out how the light/dark balance was working out. 

 Vintage Dresses by Charise Randell

Probably need to add in at least one more dress with a lot of white or pale background.  I'm really liking my collection of vintage dresses.  Now to find my meager pile of pink scraps and make a start on this month's dresses.  

The plan is to link up with Angela over at Soscrappy for this week's Rainbow Scrap Challenge and then link up later with Oh Scrap over at Quilting is More Fun than Housework.  

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Back Porch Blooms Sew Along - A Little Progress

At the beginning of the year, I take the time to plan out which quilts are to be finished and which quilts will be started.  This year the plan was really ambitious on finishing off quilts because I wanted to start 6 new quilts.  When I get tempted by a quilt along, the plan is supposed to help me say "no".  In general I do pretty well at saying no.  But when Lea Brummett who blogs at Podunk Pretties posted her tutorial for Back Street Blooms along with a challenge to make one of her very pretty patterns or create your own, my carefully crafted quilt plan didn't stand a chance. 

I'm a sucker for flowers and this block was no exception.  It didn't hurt that there are still some 1930 reproduction scraps that I'd like to get moved out of the stash.  So Lea's block was the inspiration for Blooms and Butterflies. which is supposed to end up looking something like this

  Blooms and Butterflies, Bloom block by Lea Brummett, setting by Kate
But at the moment actually looks like this:

Only one of the blooms is actually sewn together, the two on the second row are still in progress.  The framed squares for the border have become my leaders and enders project since Poinsettias is close to being a finished flimsy.  Two butterflies of the 20 something needed for the border are started, but none are completely assembled as yet.  Considering what else is going on in the sewing room, I'm not unhappy with my progress this month.  This has been a really fun project to work on and it's definitely help reduce the 1930 reproduction scraps in the stash.  

You can check out all of Lea's Back Porch Blooms patterns and tutorials here.  Then check out this month's link up to see those patterns reproduced in fabric.  I'm also linking up with Cooking up Quilts Tuesday edition of Main Crush Monday.