Friday, June 23, 2017

Little Dresses

A couple weeks ago some of the Sew Bee It girls got together for a sew day, and I was reminded that our guild's charity efforts this year are Little Dresses For Africa.  One of the girls was working on hers; she's generously making multiples in cute bright splashy floral prints.

We were encouraged not to use white which would show dirt, so I had to find something in my stash that would be suitable and which I had enough of. I ended up using a coral stripe, a green vine, and a blue marble.

Actually finding something large enough in my stash was a challenge. I didn't want to cut into large lengths of yardage planned for backings, and other than backings I usually collect half-yards or FQs of fabric. The minimum length of the size small (2-4) needs at least 5/8 yard. The medium (6-8) needs at least 3/4 yard. All sizes are supposed to use the full width of fabric.

I had enough of the green to make a Medium, no problem.

But then I got stuck. I had just enough length of the coral and the blue for size small, but I didn't have full width of fabric; I had about 36-38".  But I figured that should be enough girth for a toddler. After all, full width of fabric - 42" - is big enough to go around my bustline, and I'm certainly much larger than any toddler. So 36" in girth should be sufficient for a small child. I labeled the coral and blue dresses size Small Slim in case it matters.

These were fast and easy to make. I found a piece of ecru lace and added some to each dress. A little extra touch of prettiness can't hurt for these children, right?

So today I'm whooping about my Little Dresses and linking up with Sarah at Confessions of a Fabric Addict.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

My Solstice Challenge Blocks

Since late December I've been participating in Pat Sloan's "Solstice Challenge." I've kept up with making a block a week for 25 weeks, although I've modified some of them to suit me. So here we are at the Summer Solstice, and all my blocks are done. Here are all 25, in order.

Some I like much better than others. Some don't play as nicely with the rest as they should due to my value choices. I'm planning a layout that will use 20 of them, so I can omit the ones I like least. I also have one additional block that I could include, made in this palette when I tested some die-cutter dies.

My layout will have sashing to separate the blocks so I don't have to worry about matching up block seams. I like this kind of sashing when the blocks are all different because it kind of unifies them:

I don't have enough of anything in my stash that goes with my palette for the dark sashing strips, so I will have to buy something. I'm hoping I can eke out the light sashing strips from the background fabric I have left. If not, I'll have to figure out plan B. This quilt will finish at 75" x 90".

No deadline and no particular recipient in mind, and I have deadline projects that have to come first, so I'll have to set this project aside and come back to finish it later.

I've enjoyed making one new block a week; I think I'll actually miss having that to look forward to each Wednesday. But I shouldn't start a new BOW project; I have too many WIPS that need attention, not to mention UFOs. I guess I should go work on something on my to-do list....

Linking up with Sew Fresh Quilts

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Stash Report 6/18/17

IN so far this month: 0 - and I spent all day last Saturday at a quilt shop!
OUT so far this month: 5-1/2 yards for Batik Spiral flimsy

Moving in the right direction.

Linking up with the new Sunday Stash Report over at Quilt Paint Create

Friday, June 16, 2017

Batik Spiral Flimsy

It just glows! 

Awhile back I was inspired by this photo Wanda of Exuberant Color posted. Thanks, Wanda, for the inspiration!

I made a template, dug into my batik stash, and cut lots of pieces. I used them as leaders & enders while I was working on several projects in March, April, and May. And then they took on a life of their own and I had to finish up all the little units and lay them out. Wow, I am so pleased with the result.

If you start at the center you can see that the lights (or the darks) go around in a spiral, with a couple extra rows at the top and the bottom. This flimsy measures 64" x 84".

I made the template for 4" finished units by drawing a 4" square on template plastic, drawing a diagonal line from the 1" mark at the top to the 3" mark at the bottom, and adding 1/4" seam allowance on all four sides of the resulting shape. To use it with a rotary cutter, I cut six of these pieces, stacked them up, and glued them together with glue stick. With care it's thick enough that you can rotary cut, but you have to be careful not to nick the plastic too much.

I cut 4-1/2" WOF strips from light and dark batiks, opened them all face up (some batiks have a right and a wrong side), stacked about 4 layers of fabric, and cut as many pieces as I could across the row. I didn't keep a record of how many different fabrics I used, but I know they hardly made a dent in my batik stash.

Note: If you try this, mark your template UP and always cut your fabric right side up, otherwise you'll get blocks with the slant going the wrong way. You can rotate the template as you cut, but don't flip it over. You might also want to clip your cut pieces together with a note on them to indicate which side is up, if you're using them as leaders and enders. I made a few where I couldn't tell the right side from the wrong side, sewed them wrong sides together, and they came out backwards.

This flimsy is going to have to go in the "to be quilted" pile for awhile; I have deadline projects that I have to finish first. I don't have a purpose or recipient in mind for this quilt, but I like it so much I may just keep it for myself.

Linking up with Whoop Whoop Friday at Confessions of a Fabric Addict and Friday Finish at Crazy Mom Quilts

Monday, June 12, 2017

Plaid blocks

At the sew day this weekend I was able to finish making all the blocks I need for the flannel plaid project.

I put them up on the wall so I can arrange them. The layout will be five blocks wide by seven blocks long, 60 x 84", and obviously some of the blocks need to be moved so the color placement will be more balanced.

I don't like working with flannel. It's stretchy, it doesn't press very flat, and it sheds lint everywhere. But DH requested a flannel quilt, and some of these plaids are from his old shirts. He'll get his flannel quilt for his b-day in November. Meanwhile there's still a lot of work to do to finish it. And plenty of shirt parts to cobble together a backing.

At our sew day I was also able to join almost all the rows of my batik spiral project. Just three more seams. Maybe it'll be a finished flimsy by Friday.

Linking up with Em's Scrapbag, Love Laugh Quilt, Small Quilts and Doll Quilts, Sew Fresh Quilts

Friday, June 9, 2017

Another Sew Day Tomorrow

Whoo-Hoo! Some of my bee friends are getting together tomorrow for a new day. Fun!

I'll be able to continue working on my flannel plaid project.

And I have the rows of my batik spiral project numbered and pressed and ready to join together. Here's how they looked on the wall earlier:

These projects should keep me busy!

Linking up with Whoop Whoop Friday at Confessions of a Fabric Addict

Monday, June 5, 2017

Fun Weekend at Camp

I had such a good time at camp with my friend Chrissy & her sister this weekend. Thanks, Chrissy!

I got all the HSTs sewn and 16 blocks of my flannel plaid project made. This will be a birthday gift for my husband, due in November.

I got bored making flannel blocks, so I pulled out the other project I brought along, my original Log Cabin Triangles blocks. Last year at camp Chrissy & I tried out various layouts, which you can see in this post (scroll down). Then I put the original LCTs aside to work on the Quilt of Valor ones with Gwen (here) and the ones for Alycia (here). So it's high time I got back to the original LCTs and set them together.

Unfortunately I forgot to take my camera and just snapped a couple of badly focused phone pics. Here are Chrissy and Karen with my top.

I'm undecided what to do with it from this point. It currently measures 54" x 63", not really a very usable size. There isn't any more left of these two periwinkle blue prints and two magenta prints.
I have several options - let me know what you think.

  1. Finish it as is for a smallish lap quilt. 
  2. To make it larger, find something that could work for a narrow stop border, then cut more of the low volume prints - I have plenty - for a piano keys border. More low volume logs would continue the theme to the edges.
  3. Find a bold print for a border to make it larger. 
Do you have a suggestion?
Today I need to unpack and get caught up on household stuff, so I may not get any sewing done, we'll see.
Meanwhile, check out what everyone else is working on at these link-ups:
Em's Scrapbag, Love Laugh Quilt, Small Quilts and Doll Quilts

Sunday, June 4, 2017

May Stash Report and Goals Recap

When the end of the month falls in the middle of the week, it's hard to know whether to post before the last of the month or wait until the following weekend. I decided to wait, on the off chance I might actually accomplish something during the last few days. So here's my May recap:

Stash Report:
May IN: 0 - Yes, really! 😊
May OUT: 9-1/4 yards (Christmas Tree flimsy - 3-3/4 yds;  backing for tree - 2-3/4 yds;  x and + blocks - 1-1/8 yds;  mosaic slab block - 3/8 yd; binding for Alaska quilt - 3/4 yd;  binding for Cherie's boomerang patches quilt - 1/2yd)

YTD IN: 62 yards
YTD OUT: 63-5/8 yards
YTD Net Change: 1-5/8 yards OUT

Whoo-hoo, I'm back in the black, even after indulging in stash enhancement in Paducah last month. These bonus blocks helped a little:

Goals Update:

May recap: 
1. Resolve label for Alaska quilt and get Alaska quilt labeled and bound. DONE
2. Piece top for Christmas Tree project for 12 Days of Christmas in July. DONE. Also got the backing pieced. 
3. Write & post Snake Quilt tutorial. Drafted but not posted.
4. Bind Cherie's quilt from the boomerang patches. DONE.
5. If back from the long armer, bind KBFG. Not back from the long armer. She has it started but cannot finish it for awhile due to upcoming hip replacement surgery. 
6. Work on WIVSP hand piecing project. Not touched.
7. Keep up with Solstice Challenge and bee blocks. DONE. Also made 3  x and +  bonus blocks for a friend's special project. 

Other: 1) Cut and kitted flannel plaid project to piece at camp and sew days.
           2) Advanced batik leaders & enders to a design on the wall, now partially sewn into rows.
Flannel Plaid project, cut and ready to sew blocks

Batik leader/ender project on design wall

Alaska quilt for SIL to give as wedding gift

Christmas tree wall hanging top and backing

Solstice Challenge blocks, most recent photo through about week 20

June Goals: 
1. Finish batik leader/ender project to a flimsy.
2. Make blocks for flannel plaid project.
3. Layer, quilt, and bind Christmas tree project and begin stitching hanger loops.
4. Work on WIVSP hand piecing project.
5. Plan what to do with Solstice Challenge blocks.
6. Keep up with bee blocks and BOMs.

Linking up with the new Stash Report over at Quilt Paint Create.
Judy L at Patchwork Times has retired from hosting the Stash Report, but since it helps keep me accountable, I'm still going to keep track of my stash.

Friday, June 2, 2017

Whoo-hoo! Camp Weekend!

My friend Chrissy has invited me and a couple others to a private retreat at GS camp while she works as the camp supervisor this weekend. Thanks, Chrissy! 

Tools and equipment are all packed up and ready to go. 

Several projects are all kitted up, including my LQS BOM which meets tomorrow morning, my flannel plaid project, and a UFO that was put on hold last summer.

Let's see how much I can accomplish. Of course, much of the fun of camp is just hanging out and gabbing all weekend. So whether I accomplish much or not really doesn't matter.

Speaking of accomplishments, the blocks of my batik spiral project are almost all sewn into rows. Three more seams are needed for each row to be complete: the center and the quarters of each row. Here's the upper 3/4 of it on the wall:

So far the width has shrunk 6" with another 1-1/2" to go, for a finished flimsy width of 64".  The length is still ceiling to floor, but it will shrink to 84" when the row seams are sewn.

I am not taking this project to camp because it would be too easy to get the pieces out of place or turned in the wrong direction. This one is better off left on the big wall at home, and I have plenty of smaller projects packed that'll keep me busy.

Linking up with Whoop Whoop Friday over at Confessions of a Fabric Addict.

Monday, May 29, 2017

Leaders & Enders on Steroids

Have you ever gotten carried away with your leaders & enders, and they became your drop-everything-and-make-it-now project?

I had been using these little units as leaders & enders for awhile, but the box was getting kind of full, so I counted to see how many I had and figured how many I'd need. On Saturday I cut enough pieces for the rest of the blocks I'll need. Then I couldn't resist - I chain pieced until I had all of them sewn. The fabrics are all batiks from stash.

Here they are on the wall, first placement without moving anything around. In the photo I see some areas where I need to fix some things. This layout needs one more column on the left and another row each at the top and the bottom, but I ran out of wall space. I'll be able to add the rest after I sew some of these units together and it shrinks up some. The flimsy will finish at 72 x 84".

If you start at the light center and follow the lights clockwise, you'll see that the layout is a continuous spiral.

Now that the units are all made and this is on the wall, I guess it's not a leaders & enders project any longer, so I'll have to count it as a WIP. I guess I need to get busy and move some WIPs along to finishes!

Linking up with the new Design Wall Monday at Small Quilts and Doll Quilts, and with Em's Scrapbag and Love Laugh Quilt

Friday, May 26, 2017

Finished Alaska Quilt

The quilt my SIL is planning to give to her friend in Alaska is finally finished. She gave me the info she wanted on the label - it's a wedding gift - so I could print out the label and bind the quilt.

I had enough of that green tribal print left and my SIL really liked it, so that's what I used for the binding. This quilt has high-loft poly batting, which I don't usually use, but that's what they wanted. It really gives the quilting a lot of depth and adds a lot of texture.

My SIL and a group from her church do missionary service in Alaska every summer. Among other services they do, they take Vacation Bible School to a remote native village. The logistics involved in this endeavor are amazing. They've been going to the same village for more than 20 years.

After their stay in their usual village, my SIL will travel to another even more remote village in Northern Alaska for her friend's wedding. She has watched this friend grow up since the age of 3, go to college in the Lower 48, and establish a home of her own. SIL thinks of her friend like a niece, and she wanted to give her a quilt, and I'm happy to oblige.

Linking up with Whoop Whoop Friday at Confessions of a Fabric Addict and Friday Finish at Crazy Mom Quilts

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Bees, BOMs BOWs, and Bonus Blocks

1, 2, 3:  Bonus blocks for someone else's special project. Only two blocks were requested, but I made #3 first and I didn't like the value contrast so I made #1 to replace it. I'll send #3 anyway in case she can use it after all.

4, 5, 10: Sew Bee It bee blocks. Due to various scheduling issues, blocks for April/May/June were handed out in May and are due at the July meeting.
     4: Dresden Plate featuring bee fabric
     5: Very tiny Plus blocks
     10: Mosaic slab

6: Piecing Group bee block: hand pieced sashing unit for the recipient's Baltimore Album WIP. Not pressed; we float all the seams in hand piecing and the block's owner will press the seams as she wishes.

7, 8: Blocks for weeks 22 and 21 of Pat Sloan's Solstice Challenge. I'm caught up until block 23 is released later today.

9: May block from The Quilted Fox's First Saturday BOM. This is block 9 of the series. I've made all the main blocks and I have the kits for the alternate blocks, but I'll wait to make them until I see the suggested layout at the end and see if I like it or want to change it up.

Lots of variety! This is what I've been busy sewing lately. What's keeping you busy?

Linking up with Sew Fresh Quilts

Monday, May 22, 2017

Planning and Cutting

But first, we have our internet/TV/home phone restored, YAY!!! Everything mysteriously came back a little after 9:00 last night. I didn't realize how much I'd miss it all until we didn't have it.  

I spent Friday working off-line in EQ and prepping for a new project. DH wants a flannel quilt, and I'll need to get started soon to have it finished for his b-day in November. 

I've been saving his old shirts that are too frayed to wear anymore, and I bought some cuts of flannel in Paducah recently. I played in EQ, came up with a plan, and spent Friday cutting. First, though, I ran the new fabrics through a couple of hot water/high heat dry cycles to preshrink them as much as possible, since the shirts were already well washed and shrunk. Do you have any idea how much lint that preshrinking process generated?!!!  I should have taken a photo. 

I used the die cutter DH recently gave me and was able to make a test block that went together well. Does anyone recall the name of this block?

On Friday I spent most of the day cutting. With no internet or TV, I had nothing better to do, right? 
I cut
  • Lights and darks for at least 140 HSTs 
  • 70 light squares
  • 105 dark squares

With the die cutter, it went well and my day was very productive. I now have everything cut and kitted up in a project box for upcoming sew days with friends. I even got started on some of the HSTs, which came out just right with no trimming needed. What a time-saver!

See that red plaid on the lower right? That's from DH's all-time most favorite shirt, an LLBean shirt that he got more than 20 years of wear out of. We have a photo of him wearing it in 1989, and we didn't take that shirt out of the rotation until after he started wearing a beard in 2012, when the collar became too frayed to wear anymore. Yes, the fabric's a little thinner than the newly bought flannels, but so what, this is a quilt for him to use, not an heirloom. 

So here's the plan, as drawn in EQ, 12" blocks with 4" borders, 68 x 80" before quilting. 

DH has specifically requested wool batting, and I'll use the leftover shirt backs and flannel yardage to piece the backing. This quilt may not be a beauty, but it'll sure be cuddly. 

So as the saying goes, I have my work cut out for me. I'm looking forward to a sew day and camp weekend with friends where I can work on piecing the blocks. 

Since Judy L. has retired from hosting Design Wall Monday at Patchwork Times, another Judy has taken over. Check out everyone's Design Wall Monday posts at Small Quilts and Doll Quilts.
Also linking  up with Em's Scrapbag and Love Laugh Quilt

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Internet Outage and Special Fabric for Eric

I'm posting this from my local coffee shop...

We had a lightning strike Thursday night which knocked out all the circuit breakers in our home. They're all flipped back on and the appliances and devices all work fine, thank goodness for surge protectors. But we have no internet, TV, or home phone. On Friday it was an area outage and they were supposed to call when service was restored. They called Saturday a.m. but we still don't have service, so they're sending a repair guy out tomorrow.

Do you know how hard it is to be without internet (me) and TV (DH) for 3 days???

The upside is, I got a lot done in the sewing room. I pieced a back for my Christmas Tree project.

I dislike making pieced backings, but I have a lot of greens I know I'll never use. Or have already used in something and no longer need the leftover fabric. Like this one:

This is particularly appropriate for this project because it's one of the featured fabrics in my son's wedding quilt, and the Christmas tree project is also for him. Have I ever shown his quilt on the blog? Here it is; it's called Celtic Lullaby. The fabric shown above is the lighter of the two pathways. Remind me, and I'll tell the stories about this quilt in another post.

Hopefully I'll have internet service back tomorrow and I'll be back to my usual routine. Wish me luck!

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Mosaic Slab

One of the members of my STLMQG bee requested a Mosaic Slab block, in any monochromatic color palette, with black sashing. I raided my orange scraps, and this is what I came up with.

As you can see, it came out wonky. I hope that's OK. This was actually pretty hard for me - improv is so not my thing and I don't do it easily or well. This slab is 13-1/2" x 20", about an inch bigger than my friend requested, so she can trim it down to meet her needs.

Quite a departure from my usual work!

Linking up with Sew Fresh Quilts

Friday, May 12, 2017

Finished Flimsy: Christmas Tree Hanging

This was not as easy as I expected to put together. Matching those points meant some seam allowances were more than 1/4" and some less, so the background strips had to be adjusted accordingly.  This was basically an exercise in fudging it to get it to work. No tutorial for this project, folks... But, hey, look at those points!

The finished flimsy measures 77-3/4" high by 30-1/4" wide. It started much bigger - about 92-1/2" high including the top two rows of background not present in the layout photo below. Best estimate, this project used 3-3/4 yards of fabric.

My son was visiting last weekend and we talked about how he wants to hang it. It turns out he doesn't want to hang it on the back of the front door after all because the door swings open toward a coat tree, and he's afraid that wouldn't be good for the ornaments. He wants to hang it on a wall instead, where it's less likely that anything will bump into it. Much safer for the ornaments. And much easier for me - all I have to do is add sleeves at the top and the bottom so he can hang it securely to the wall.

I'll quilt this and attach the sleeves in the binding. Then I'll add the loops for the ornaments last - since those are handwork, they'll take awhile.

Linking up with Confessions of a Fabric Addict and Crazy Mom Quilts

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Cut and Laid Out

All the pieces for the Christmas tree hanging have been cut and laid out on the wall. 
Now it's time to start sewing them together.

Can I get it together by Friday for a Friday finish? Maybe!

Monday, May 8, 2017

Caught Up

I've been trying to keep up with the Solstice Challenge blocks, but Block 19 from the week I went to Paducah didn't get made until later.

Here are the first 19 blocks on my wall before I took them down to work on the tree project. Several have been modified to suit me. There's also an extra block that I made to test out my new cutter.

Block 19 was another large and complicated one (think Parcheesi board) so I modified it a bit to 12".

Block 20 didn't require modification. What a difference lighting makes; the photos above were taken indoors on a dreary day and the one below in the same location on a bright day. The color is better in the photo below.

So I'm caught up through week 20; only five weeks to go. I definitely like some of the blocks better than others. Not sure I'll use them all in the final layout; we'll see.

Linking up with Patchwork Times, Em's Scrapbag, Love Laugh Quilt

Friday, May 5, 2017

Dancing Plus II

Whoo-hoo! No rain today! For the first time in forever, it seems...

I finally got a chance to take outdoor photos of my finished Dancing Plus II quilt. Unfortunately it's been folded for over a week, which shows at the bottom. DP II is big and snuggly, 65" x 80" after quilting.

I quilted it with vertical organic wavy lines. Very simple, but it doesn't detract from the piecing or the dancing effect of the blocks.

Very scrappy, too. I used lots of charms, scraps, and leftover binding bits for the plusses, and lots of low volume prints from my collection for the background.

I've entered Dancing Plus II in the STLMQG quilt show in July. STLMQG's motto is "all modern all the time." My original Dancing Plus started as a bee project with my STLMQG bee, Sew Bee It, in bright modern fabrics and colors. That quilt was given away as a gift. This one is for me and the palette is more subdued. Is it acceptable for an "all modern all the time" quilt show?

Linking up with Confessions of a Fabric Addict and Crazy Mom Quilts

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

WIP: Christmas Tree

Yes, here it is almost Mothers Day and I'm talking about Christmas. But I need to finish this project for an event in July, so I should get going on it.

My new die cutter made cutting all the triangles for my Christmas Tree door hanging go quickly! I used the 3" Triangle-in-a-Square die, and got all the triangles I need cut and laid out on the wall already.

If you missed the back story on this project, my son lives in a small house with roommates, three cats and a toddler. They don't have room for a Christmas tree so my son requested a quilted wall hanging that would fit on the back of a door. He wants loops on it so they can hang real ornaments.

I think that's an inspired idea, and I'm glad to be able to make this for him to solve their Christmas tree problem. He and my grandson will be visiting this weekend, so I can work with him on how the tree will be hung. Magnets? Rod pockets? We'll figure it out.

It looks huge on my wall here, but it'll lose 11" in height and quite a lot in width due to all those seams.  I'll add a tree trunk, and it'll finish about 78" high and 30" wide, just right to hang on the back of the front door.

Next step: cutting the background. I plan on neutral/low volume horizontal strips that will finish at 3" wide, the same height as the triangles. I'll use the side triangle die of the Triangle-in-a-Square die to cut small neutral pieces to square off the rows at the ends of the green triangles, so cutting those should go quickly, too.

Then it will be just a matter of joining pieces into rows, etc. I'm hoping to have the top completely done by the end of May and the tree quilted and bound by the beginning of July for Sarah Craig's 12 Days of Christmas in July blog hop.

Linkups: Sew Fresh Quilts, My Quilt Infatuation

Monday, May 1, 2017

Project Plan for Christmas Tree

My son has requested a door-size Christmas Tree wall hanging. They have three cats and a toddler at their house. The house is small and there isn't room for a Christmas tree. He wants a wall hanging that will fit on the back of a door, and he wants loops in it to hang real Christmas ornaments.

OK, no problem, Mom can handle that.

Here's the basic plan. The tree itself will be like a Thousand Pyramids design. The background around it will be horizontal strips, the same width as the height of the triangles. The greens for the tree and the low volume neutrals for the background will be very scrappy.

In order for it to fit on the back of the door, it can't be any longer than 78" tall and 30" wide. My sketch here is too wide, so I will have to modify it slightly.

I collected some wonderful greens in Paducah to supplement the ones I already have. Lots of scrappy variety! That plaid will be the binding.

To hang ornaments on the tree, I'll stitch loops using the same technique as thread belt loops at the intersections of each seam within the tree. That way they can hang ornaments of any size anywhere they like.

I'll find out what kind of door they want to hang it on. If it's a metal door, I'll sew magnets onto the back across the top, bottom, and a couple on the sides so it won't swing. If it's a wooden door, I'll put sleeves (rod pockets) at the top and bottom and they can attach rods to the door.

They'll be able to display their Christmas ornaments without the tree taking up a lot of room in their home, and the cats won't be able to climb it.

I'll be participating in Sarah's 12 Days of Christmas in July at Confessions of a Fabric Addict, so come back during the blog hop and see what kind of progress I've made on this project by then.

Link ups: Patchwork Times, Em's Scrapbag, Love Laugh Quilt

Sunday, April 30, 2017

April Stash Report & Goals Update

OK, let's switch it around and get the goals taken care of first, then we can look at the stash. I just got home from Paducah, where some serious fabric acquisition took place.

April Goals Recap:
1. Make/finish Hands2Help quilt. DONE
2. Quilt Alaska gift quilt for Jackie. DONE
3. Keep up with Pat Sloan Solstice Challenge blocks. Mostly done; have not done the one for 4/26 because I've been in Paducah since before it was posted. But, I made an extra block earlier to test out my new die cutter. 
4. Start planning a Christmas tree project requested by my son. DONE: Planned, fabrics collected, cutting started. 
5. Make progress hand piecing my WIVSP Piecing Group project. No, not touched.
6. Keep up with bee blocks. Mostly done; I'm still working on the hand pieced block to get it done but it will be done by Tuesday night when it's due. 

Other: Basted, quilted, and bound Dancing Plus II and posted a tutorial about how I do machine binding with glue basting. Here's a detail of the quilting & binding, but I need to get some good photos of the whole quilt. The color is not good here, and the wind was a little too "helpful" when I was trying to take photos.

May Goals: 
1. Resolve label for Alaska quilt and get Alaska quilt labeled and bound.
2. Piece top for Christmas Tree project for 12 Days of Christmas in July.
3. Write & post Snake Quilt tutorial.
4. Bind Cherie's quilt from the boomerang patches.
5. If it comes back from the long armer, bind KBFG.
6. Work on WIVSP hand piecing project.
7. Keep up with Solstice Challenge and bee blocks.

April Stash Report
Okay, now that we've got the project accountability out of the way, let's look at the good stuff. I had some finishes so I can count out a lot of fabric used in April. But there were some local sales, and I indulged in serious stash building in Paducah, so I have to count a lot of fabric in.

Month IN: 42 yards (35-1/5 yds from Paducah; 6-1/2 yds from local sales)
Month OUT: 19-1/8 yards (3-5/8 yds for H2H race top; 4 yds H2H back; 1/2 yd H2H binding; 3-5/8 yds Alaska top; 2 yds wide backing for Alaska back; 4-3/4 yds DPII backing; 5/8 yd DPII binding;)
Month Net Change: 22-7/8 yards IN

YTD IN: 62 yards
YTD OUT: 54-3/8 yards
YTD Net Change: 7-5/8 yards IN.  I can easily make that up by the end of the year, don't you think?

So, Paducah was so much fun. Girls' week out, gorgeous show quilts, plus fabric shopping! We spotted this rotary cutter at the AQS show.

We spotted Quilt Man, too.  

So, my haul:
1. A few more greens for the Christmas tree project requested by my son. The triangles were already cut and I brought them along so I wouldn't duplicate any of those fabrics. The new fabrics are mostly FQs except for a half-yard of that ombre print, and a yard of the plaid for binding. Amount purchased: 3-1/4 yards.

2. Flannel: DH has requested a flannel quilt. I have several of his old flannel shirts, but not enough variety, so I was on a mission to find more flannels. The tan plaid on the right is my constant and/or background, so I bought 3 yards. The rest are either less than one-yard flat folds from the sale table, or half yard cuts. Total flannel yardage here: 7-5/8 yards.

3. Bindings and miscellaneous stash enhancement. I specifically need mostly black with bright white, and black with ivory. I don't have enough of anything in my stash. So, black binding prints. The rest of the fabrics here were from the flat fold sale table at Hancock's. Navy Grunge, natural Essex linen, some low volumes including a numbers print by Basic Grey, and a stripe that I liked for some future binding on something, I just like the color combo.  Total 9-5/8 yards in this photo.

4. We always go to the Rotary exhibit of antique quilts every year, and there are vendors there too. One in particular I like, Nancy J, has packs of four coordinated FQs for $5. I picked up a couple of packs; one had a green that's in the photo above. These are just stash enhancement because I liked them. 1-3/4 yards here.

5. New project: I was very taken with one of the large quilts in the AQS show, very traditional, mostly reds. My stash is very lacking in reds, and I've been so into the more modern-ish fabrics lately that now traditional looks very warm and appealing to me. So armed with an inspiration, I collected a few traditional prints, 13-1/4 yards. I can use these for QOV projects, too. Most of these were flat folds from the sale table, color of the day at Eleanor Burns, or half-yard cuts at Hancock's.

Speaking of Hancock's, the best time to go is right when they open at 8:00. This has to be the least crowded I've ever seen Hancock's during quilt week!

All in all, April was a very good month. Now let's see if I can bust some of this new yardage in May!

Linkups: Patchwork Times, Molli Sparkles