Swiss Star & Bedford Tiles

Another week has flown by. It's been a busy one. We're nearing the end of school and the end of college, so there are a lot of events coming up. My son's academic honors was Monday night. He was recognized for five trimesters of 4.0+ GPA and also received an academic excellence award for pre-calc.

I've managed a bit of personal sewing. Here is this week's progress on the Swiss Star QAL.

I got to sew with my small guild friends on Saturday. We were working on a project called Bedford Tiles that a local woman presented to us. It's basically a variation of Bonnie Hunter's trip around the world quilt. As of Sunday afternoon, I have all my strip sets sewn. Next I have to sew the strip sets into tubes, then cut them up and unsew certain seams. It might be a bit before I get back to this one. 

You can see I was also working on my Log Cabin Stars quilt.

I've quilted several more quilts and finished some of the binding. My Lucey decided she needed a few days off (random long stitches, no explanation, went away after it sat a few days 🤷🏻‍♀️). 

I quilted Linda's quilt with Toss Up.

This one also belongs to Linda and is quilted with Radiance.

The next two belong to Toni. This one is quilted with A Fishy Tail. 

And this one is quilted with Starry.

I'll probably be quilting most every day for the next few weeks. Keeps me out of trouble I guess.

I was able to get the rest of the vegetable garden tanks weeded and planted peas and lettuce. I also planted thyme, dill, and parsley in one of my Aerogardens. The dill and parsley are because I found some pre-planted tubes that I figured needed to be grown. I also started bell peppers and tomatoes in the other Aerogarden using the seed starter insert.

Our crabapple trees have put on a marvelous show this year. 

I've had a few tulips pop up and there are still a good handful of daffodils blooming.

I'm planning to spend a day this weekend getting the lower flower garden into shape.

I attended a trade show/convention thing with my husband yesterday and saw a smiley face in the clouds on the way back home.

The April OMG finish link up will open next week Wednesday, so the regular blog post will be on Thursday next week. 

Linking with Quiltery and Alycia Quilts.

Swiss Star Center and Eclipse Day

Did you get to experience the eclipse on Monday? We were in the path of totality, so schools, college, banks, and more were closed. The experts warned us to be prepared for up to 300,000 visitors in town and to get gas and groceries ahead of time. The grocery stores were hit hard as early as Friday, with many things being sold out, and of course hotel room rates and gas prices soared. I saw a lot of people on Facebook trying to sell parking in their yards, though without takers.

I would suspect that "they" grossly overestimated the tourist count. There was a big show at IU with Mae Jemison, Janelle Monae, William Shatner, and other performers. I guess they prepared for 10,000 but only sold 2,500 tickets. Most of the pictures I've seen of various locations had small crowds, definitely not packed. I'm thinking that because the path was so broad this time, most people didn't travel long distances.

We enjoyed gorgeous weather and were able to witness the eclipse from the comfort of our own driveway. Many of the neighbors had small viewing parties and the closest neighbors had a pool and a blow-up slide respectively for all their kids to play on. 

It was quite hot out (~76 degrees) prior to the eclipse. My husband was outside working on his barn. The kids and I kept running out, looking, going back inside until something was happening. They did set up the GoPro camera in the chicken coop and my son set up one of his old phones to film out his window. He recorded with that for over two hours and ended up with a 20+ second video that shows the changing light. 

I was working at the computer and noticed that it had suddenly gotten much darker in the house. The temperature dropped about 10 degrees and it kept getting darker and darker inside, though it didn't seem quite so dark outside until right at the moment of totality. Totality lasted a bit over four minutes for us. The songbirds got a little quieter. We thought the chickens would go into the coop. They headed up the ramp and then looked around and came back down. 🤷🏻‍♀️ The roosters did quit crowing during totality, but started up again after.

I did notice that the sound of humans carried much, much farther during totality. We could hear many people talking that were not our immediate neighbors. There was lots of cheering. I could have dealt without the profanity that carried and also the fireworks someone set off afterwards--like, it's light out, why do you need to shoot them off now? At least they weren't shooting them during the eclipse. Why can't we just appreciate the wonder of nature and not ruin it with stupid fireworks?

We were all taking pictures. My husband got the best shot using his Samsung phone using the pro mode (pictured top). The rest of us have iPhones, so our pictures weren't good (directly above). My son used my DSLR with its dying battery to get this shot.

After all that, it's back to work for us. I completed the center portion of the Swiss Star for the QAL I'm participating in. We also had to make blocks with the HST from last week and square in a square blocks.

I'm really itching to get this top put together. The pattern author included an assembly diagram along with the individual block unit instructions this week, so if I can complete all the client binding, I'm going back to it. 

I also need to assemble my Log Cabin Stars top still. I have about two weeks to get that done before I need to post the OMG finish link up. Other tasks that need attention are prepping for my small guild's class this weekend and making my yellow RSC blocks for this month. And I really should start working on the guild's QAL. I bought all the fabric and I am now three to four months behind. LOL.  And I never, ever run out of business-related tasks, quilting or otherwise. There's so much behind the scenes work.

I've still been keeping busy with tons of quilts. Here are the ones I've completed since last week. The first two belong to Pat. These both need to be fully bound. I quilted Flirtatious Leaves on this one.

And Sprawl on this one.

I liked the selvedge on her backing fabric! It's a bit hard to read in my picture. It says, "Nothing Haunts Us Like the FABRIC We Didn't Buy!" Two Wisconsins are printed after.

Then I quilted Flirtatious Leaves on Carol's embroidered quilt. I used 60 wt thread in cream so as not to detract from the embroideries, which were all done by hand. I would have probably picked pale green otherwise.

Next was Twist Tie on Maria's quilt. 

And Ginger Hearts on two little doll quilts for Maria. All of Maria's quilts still need to be fully  bound by me. This first one looks much cuter in real life than in my picture. I couldn't get the colors to show up correctly.

I quilted Loops and Swirls on Trish's quilt. 

Finally, I quilted Deb's with Stipple.

I took advantage of the $.88 pineapples on special last week and canned 11 pints of pineapple chunks from four large fruits. I did almost all of this by myself this time, with just a tad of help from my son grabbing extra jars and rings at the end. He also helped me weed the side, vegetable, and a bit of the front upper garden the day before.

I took apart and cleaned the tension assembly in my long arm by myself! I changed out the check spring because it had a very deep groove worn in. I really need to just put in the new tension assembly next time instead of messing with cleaning all the plating dust out of here. Sometimes I can be frugal to the point of cheap. 

Monday I had a bit of a shock when I was loading the doll quilt backings. One moment I was rolling the fabric on and the next, there was a large crash--the quilt backing bar actually fell out! It damaged my LVP floor. ☹️ At least it wasn't my foot.  

My husband decided to add Loctite to all four rollers while he checked and retightened them. These are all on the left side of the frame when looking at the machine. If you have this frame for your APQS, avoid unpleasant surprises and please check periodically!!

I found this gem left by sister. It took me three or four days after she did it for me to notice. LOL.

Here's one of my little squirrel friends. I feel like I'm often distracted by squirrels, literally and figuratively.
Happy sewing, friends.

Swiss Star HST

Things have been rather busy around here. Very little sewing has been accomplished. This is what I did finish.

These are (obviously) the HST units for the Swiss Star QAL I am participating in. I didn't do very well at forming them into a circle. LOL.

My sister and her kids were here Friday evening through Monday afternoon. My sister, her boys, and my daughter all went to a concert in Lexington Saturday. They stayed overnight since it got done late and returned Sunday afternoon. We had my niece and my son. The weather was gorgeous all weekend. Saturday we drove around campus and went in a few of the buildings. We also drove by many fraternities and a few sororities who were "day drinking" (my son's description) on sketchy couches, playing something similar to beer pong, and, in one case, doing a strange dance while standing on a short wall holding one's liquor (or maybe not holding...?). LOL. Below is a picture of campus taken near the psychology building. Can you see all the trees blooming? I love the redbuds, but my allergies do not.

I went jeans shopping with my daughter a few weeks ago. While she was successful, I was not. I tried on everything they had in Kohls and Wal-Mart in multiple sizes and NOTHING fit. I was really sweating what I was going to do because all of my jeans are 10-12 years old and wearing out. I even started looking at sewing my own. My sister brought tons of pairs of jeans from Meijer for me to try and I found three pairs that fit. What a relief!

N. and my husband made bunny treats for Easter.

My house is very tidy right now since I spent a lot of time cleaning and organizing before they came. Usually my sewing room is the cleanest spot, but not right now. Yesterday the weather was garbage so I didn't want to risk running the long arm. My computer also did an update and then the internet didn't work for a few hours on that device. I've been doing a ton of business-related things, most of which I'm not ready to share yet, but I can share that my quilting business is now an LLC!

I quilted a few things and bound many quilts over the past week. I bound all of Jeri's three quilts from last week.

I quilted and bound Donna's quilt. It's pretty hard to see the quilting because she chose very fine thread. The design is Flirtatious.

I also quilted Carol T.'s quilt with Mike's Swoosh. This is basically a two-sided quilt--the back is various-width strips.

It was a bit of a surprise that I have amassed a full box of magna bobbin cores. I'll send them in for recycling soon. It's taken me around four years to fill this box.

We are in the path of totality for the solar eclipse on Monday. I hope the weather will allow us to see it.

See you next week. Until then, happy sewing.

April One Monthly Goal

 It's time to set a goal for the month.

New to One Monthly Goal?  Welcome!  To join, share a photo of your project plus some words about what you want to accomplish in a blog post or Instagram post and add that photo to the link up.  Return at the end of the month and share your results.  (Results link up opens for the last 7 days of the month.)

My goal for this month is to finish piecing the top of my Log Cabin Stars quilt. As you can see, I'm really close, but haven't had any sewing time to devote to it.

I do have backing fabric purchased and a quilting plan if the opportunity presents itself. If not, I'll be content to at least be able to remove it from the wall. It's been languishing there for months.

Now it's your turn to set a goal. 

The One Monthly Goal accomplishment link up will be available on April 24.  Make sure you add a link to this OMG post so others can find the OMG link up from your blog--just paste this link into your post:  

Stories from the Sewing Room One Monthly Goal April Link Up

Take a few minutes to visit others, offer encouragement, and make new friends!

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Tessellations & PHD Report

I went to the guild sew day over the weekend and added to my Tessellations quilt. Another guild member who also took the class had hers almost complete. She went truly scrappy. I can't cede enough control to do that. 😬 I went with mostly coordinated fabrics.  Here's my progress so far.

It's a fun quilt to work on because you don't have to think a ton other than making sure your colors are lined up correctly from block to block. The worst part is spinning the seam intersections. For some reason I always struggle with that, though it is so satisfying when it works out correctly.

I also cut out a quilt for a QAL that my daughter recolored. She helped me pick fabrics to meet her vision. We had everything but background. We bought that fabric since we couldn't agree on any from my stash. 

I will need to make a bunch of HST in the next two weeks. I'm determined to stay on top of this one.

Speaking of staying on top of things, here is my PHD report for March. I completed one more project toward my "degree" this month.

I've been busy quilting Jeri's quilts. The first one is called Algorithm. I think she said it's a GE Designs pattern. She picked Champagne Bubbles for the quilting.

Next is her flying geese quilt, quilted with Good Vibrations.

Finally, her Color Block Postage Stamp quilt, quilted with tiny scale Squatty Squared.

I am fully binding all three of these, so that's what I'll continue working on this week, along with more quilting hopefully. I have a bunch of appointments this week that are making working a challenge.

I've also been working more on cleaning up our house prior to the family invasion this weekend. The bedroom is completed. We have a few more things to move out of the way in the living room and need to hang a towel bar in the bathroom for them. Then it's just doing a regular cleaning of everything and we should be as ready as we can be. 

Take care, and I'll see you Monday for April's OMG linkup and then my regular post on Wednesday.

Linking with Quiltery, My Quilt Infatuation, Alycia Quilts, and Ms P Designs.

March One Monthly Goal Finish

How did you do with your March goal?

My goal was to completely finish my Malted Mystery quilt. I finished it with hours to spare. I quilted it with the Peak Blooms design and hand bound it. 

Now it's your turn to share your progress. Link up your project and then visit others, make new friends, and gain inspiration.

This link up will remain open until March 31 at 11:55 pm EST.

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter