Chickadees in the Snow

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I finished this quilt top recently. It’s the first project I have started and completed during the pandemic. Jo and I masked up and went to the local quilting store a few months ago, back when the numbers in our area weren’t terrifying, and he was like, “Pick out whatever you want, my treat.”

I wanted to do something soft and low-contrast. Subtle. Gentle.

I second guessed my fabric choices along the way a fair bit — I wasn’t sure my ‘dark’ fabric was actually dark enough, but I’m actually really pleased with the end result.

Once it is safe to do so I will hire a longarm quilter to quilt this for me, and I’ll probably bind it in the same fabric I used to do the super simple border there — just to keep it clean.

It’s not quite big enough to cover my big-ass bed, but even I think we’ll keep this one rather than gift it to someone LoL

Dani’s Quilt

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LOL It’s been three years since I posted? That’s kind of hilarious, especially given how I discovered that was the case. I came here to find a picture of a quilt I’d assumed I’d posted when it was finished (a couple years ago). But I discovered I hadn’t updated to mention the quilt being doneย or posted a photo of it. Wewps.

So let me do that now LOL

I have a love love/hate thing with scrappy quilts. I love how efficient they are at using up scraps and making use of every little bit of fabric. I dislike how ‘messy’ they can sometimes turn out.

That’s why I always try to tame them down in some way either by using high contrast blocking like with this log cabin or by using a quieter fabric to set the blocks. Like I did in this quilt I made for my daughter, Danica:

This quilt is pretty special. The nine patch blocks were recovered from a quilt my mother made me when I was very young. It was her very first quilt and I loved it very hard, so by the time I was in my thirties it was pretty clear the poor thing was doomed.

I couldn’t bring myself to throw it away, though, so I broke out the seam ripper and found a few 3×3 sections where the fabric had stood up well enough to be reclaimed. I pulled that out and put it on point with a dark blue marbled fabric to mellow it a wee bit.

Then, because Danica wanted the background to be yellow I got eight different shades of yellow fabric and created a gradient of darker to lighter for the yellow. The border is made up of different shades of yellow (whatever was left over) framed with the same blue I used to surround the blocks. It also includes a small swatch of the fabric from my grandmother’s wedding dress (I did not cut up the dress. It’s a long story. For another day).

For the back I used the very first quilt top I’d ever made — a patchwork thing made of flannelette that I’d sewn together while I was pregnant with Dani but never actually got around to finishing.

I tied it using dark colours in the center of the nine patch and dark blue parts and light colours which would blend in on the yellow patches.

So this quilt of Dani’s has bits from my first ever quilt, from my mother’s first ever quilt and my grandmother’s wedding dress all melded together.

She loves it and I think it exemplifies patchwork done right.

Progress?

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So… this was the before picture:

After some work it looked like this:

And this is how it looks today:

That pile of yellow is a quilt top I’m working on for my daughter. The problem is, I can’t work like this. I tried, I really did, and the issue isn’t just that I switched tables (which seemed like a good idea at the time) it’s that now I’m pressing on the left side, which also happens to be where I’m sewing and that’s just a freaking disaster.

Now I need to swap this desk out for the old table again to make the space workable. And I’m definitely not doing that before Christmas.

So that’s where I’m at. I haven’t forgotten quilting or this blog again, I’ve just hit a bit of a snag in the ‘getting back to it in a big way’ plan. I DO need to get back to it, though, because I offered coasters as prizes in a fundraiser that ended last week. Need to get them made and mailed sooner rather than later!

Short Version of a Long Story

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Ohai! Remember me?

It’s been a long time, hasn’t it?

The short version of a long story is… after my Mom died I kind of fell off the quilting wagon. It both was and wasn’t because she was gone, but since this is the short version of the story we’re not going to get into the specifics.

I made a very brief comeback two years later and released ‘The Wave‘ which was as simple and basic as you can get.

Then I stopped quilting again.

I think I’m ready to come back to it now though.

I’d been thinking about it for a while now, and then I had a health scare last week which made me decide I needed to spend less time working and more time with my family and enjoying my hobbies.

So I’m dusting this blog off (and oooh boy, but that’s a lot of dust!):

and I’m going to stick my head in on my favourite quilting mailing list to see if there’s any life to be resurrected there… and then I’m going to get back at it.

I promised my daughter that the first task on my table would be finishing a quilt for her, I’d also like to do the quilt in memory of my mom and re-create the spring mystery that got lost in the great screw up of 2012. But we’ll see, I’m going to play it by ear for a while so I don’t get overwhelmed and stop again.

Oh, and the absolute very first thing I need to do? Excavate my sewing table. That’s it waaaaay in the back there…

Tackling that is on my to-do list for Friday. Wish me luck! LOL

Quiltinator.com

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My friend, Michele, is getting back into quilting. As part of that she’s hosting a mystery quilt project. Unlike me, however, she’s brave enough to put it all on YouTube ๐Ÿ™‚

You can check out the first clue right here:

Interested? Michele’s website, as you may have guessed from the title of this post, is Quiltinator.com ๐Ÿ™‚

The Wave

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Unlike most of the projects on this website The Wave isn’t a complete project, it’s a set of two blocks which can be put together in any number of different and awesome ways. I went through a lot of (small but tedious) issues in the process of working on The Wave so these blocks have not yet been test sewn. That means if you sew this you are, in effect, test sewing them. If you run into any issues with the instructions please let me know (rhonda@jofigure.com).

The Wave

~ Step One ~ Step One(a) ~ Step Two ~ Step Three ~ Step Four ~

 

Progress

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Good news! The Wave is currently with one of my beta testers and by the end of the day Wednesday it ought to be with a few more (I just need to upload some stuff first). That means it will be ready for release very soon.

After that my next project is going to be one in memory of my mother. You won’t want to miss that one, trust me. But first, The Wave. Coming to this blog very soon.

*Le Sigh*

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Um. So I made a mistake. A big mistake in my jelly roll mystery. I don’t think it’s fixable, alas. At least not in the test blocks I’ve already made. So… I’m going to start sewing again with different fabric and see if I can get it right this time LOL

The worst part it that this really is a super easy project I just had a brain fart at the worst possible time — right at the start. Wewps.

ETA: So… I don’t have another jellyroll and I’ve waited too long to release this project to put it off longer in order to go shopping and get one, so I’m going to re-name this mystery and make it with some fat quarters I have handy. The project can still be made with a jellyroll, but I can’t make the instructions jellyroll specific. I apologise to those of you who were waiting for a jellyroll specific project. I will come up with something new that’s jellyroll specific, it will just take a little time. Sorry.

Spam

Ya know what sucks? Spam sucks. I have a finite amount of time to spend working on these mystery quilts, and sadly I seem to spend more time dealing with spam comments than I do sewing. Seriously. Argh.

But I am here, and I am sewing. I’m hopeful that I will be able to send the Jelly Roll Mystery to my test sewers by the end of next week. *fingers crossed*

In Memory of Sandra McKenzie (aka WinterBear)

Sandra McKenzie

My mother, Sandra McKenzie (also known as WinterBear to some of her online friends) recently passed away.

She was a prolific quilter as you can see from the small sample of projects below. I just picked random pictures of some of her finished projects that she’d posted on Facebook to share with you.

Mom had a lot of friends online who she swapped blocks, projects and fabric with on a regular basis. Also, like most quilters, my mom had a large stash of fabric. My sister and I took some of her stash, and a huge amount was given to one of her friends to make charity quilts with, but in the spirit of my mom I snatched a few meters to share with her friends online.

I cut the fabric up into fat quarter(ish) pieces that I’m going to mail to Mom’s friends. I will be sending some to a couple different people from the online groups Mom was a part of, and they will be able to distribute them at the same time as they do their regular swaps. But I also have a few extras I’m willing to send to any of my Mom’s friends who may not be a part of swapping groups. If that is you, please email me at rhonda@jofigure.com and I’ll send something your way.

Mom would be estatic to know that her fabric was going to continue to be used in wonderful, creative fabric art.

I have at least two different patterns planned in memorium of my mother, but I’m going to finish the Jelly Roll Surprise one first. I’m still not emotionally ready to design the Mom-centric ones just yet.