From My Carolina Home

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Be My Neighbor Quilt Along Block 6

Moving along to catch up, block six is next.  I picked a large scrap of purple fabric for the house as the bottom bit of this pattern has a piece 18-inches wide.  It has some squares on point at the bottom, and these still look like flower boxes to me.  So, I pulled some flower fabric to use.  I love this snapdragon print, but it is to close to the purple I have selected for the house.

Be My Neighbor Quilt Block 6 ~ From My Carolina Home

So, I went back to the daffodils. More contrast will look better.

Be My Neighbor Quilt Block 6 ~ From My Carolina Home

OK, I like that so I cut the required pieces. I double checked the sizes this time!

Be My Neighbor Quilt Block 6 ~ From My Carolina Home

Lots of HSTs meant drawing a lot of lines.

Be My Neighbor Quilt Block 6 ~ From My Carolina Home

The top of the house has five flying geese sections that are not the same, so I laid out the pieces carefully, chain pieced, then laid them out again to check the placement.

Be My Neighbor Quilt Block 6 ~ From My Carolina Home

Then the top section was pieced.

Be My Neighbor Quilt Block 6 ~ From My Carolina Home

Assembling the top two rows, I got this.  The points are so far off I cannot stand it.

Be My Neighbor Quilt Block 6 ~ From My Carolina Home

And so the streak continues, I have to frog something on every one of these blocks.

Be My Neighbor Quilt Block 6 ~ From My Carolina Home

Sewing again with more pins to keep the edges lined up. It isn’t perfect, but it is as good as it is going to get.

Be My Neighbor Quilt Block 6 ~ From My Carolina Home

This block has a lot of pieces. Carefully following the steps, it went together.

Be My Neighbor Quilt Block 6 ~ From My Carolina Home

Chain piecing all the squares on point helped streamline the assembly.

Be My Neighbor Quilt Block 6 ~ From My Carolina Home

Finally, all done!

Be My Neighbor Quilt Block 6 ~ From My Carolina Home

So, now I am caught up. The next two blocks are on the list for completion in April.  Are you sewing this week?

If you’d like to make these blocks too, go to Bear Creek Quilting Free Moda Be My Neighbor for the patterns for all 16 blocks.

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Be My Neighbor – Block 5

Getting back to the Be My Neighbor quilt, the first four blocks have been sewn together into the first row.  I laid it out so I could look at my spring scraps basket for the next house block colors.

Be My Neighbor Block 5 ~ From My Carolina Home

This one has a heart on the side of the house, and I found a pink and red rose print for the heart. The house will be white, and the other floral print will be the ground.

Be My Neighbor Block 5 ~ From My Carolina Home

Beginning with the roof again, I marked the sewing lines for the angled roof.

Be My Neighbor Block 5 ~ From My Carolina Home

Once again, I chain stitched as much as I could to shorten the assembly time.

Be My Neighbor Block 5 ~ From My Carolina Home

I sewed it, then realized I had cut one of the pieces wrong.  The blue strip on the far left should be a half-inch wider than I cut it.  Those cutting instructions have such tiny writing, I keep seeing 3/4 as 1/4.  Egads, can I just do one bloody block without frogging? And I thought I was doing so well by paying attention to the way the chimney should face.

Be My Neighbor Block 5 ~ From My Carolina Home

Ah, well, moving on,

Be My Neighbor Block 5 ~ From My Carolina Home

The re-cut and re-sewn roof unit matched up this time to the base.

Be My Neighbor Block 5 ~ From My Carolina Home

Almost done, the piecing part is finished.

Be My Neighbor Block 5 ~ From My Carolina Home

This one has applique too, another bird.  Picking up the colors in the heart, I decided to do a cardinal. The advantage is that I don’t need to make the bottom a different color.  So, I tried the technique of fusible web, sewing and turning the applique. It made the applique a bit more stiff, and I clipped out some of the bulk from the backside. I stitched it as well.  The small bits got the starch treatment, pressing around freezer paper.

Be My Neighbor Block 5 ~ From My Carolina Home

I did another French knot for an eye, but again, will likely add a button after the quilt is finished.  The beak is a bit crooked, but it will stay as it is.

Be My Neighbor Block 5 ~ From My Carolina Home

Now, all done.

Be My Neighbor Block 5 ~ From My Carolina Home

Finally today, I want to let you all know about a wonderful charity quilting event over at Confessions of a Fabric Addict.  Sign up to participate this week and you’ll be entered into the first round of giveaways from some wonderful sponsors.

Confessions Of A Fabric Addict

There will be tutorials and giveaways, guest bloggers (including me!), check ins and link ups. With three very worthy charities to choose from, just about any quilt size is needed. Hop over to Confessions of a Fabric Addict and sign up to contribute a quilt HERE.

What are you working on now?  Are you participating with Hands2Help?

 

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Be My Neighbor Quilt Along – Block 4

At the meeting on March 1st, I found out that the BOM club will be doing two blocks a month with the first two done in February.  This meant that instead of being caught up with three done in March, I was one block behind.  Plus I need to get two done this month to be caught up, so I’ll do one a week for three weeks to get caught up.  After that, I’ll try to get one done every two weeks or so until all 16 are done.  Today is block 4, and once again it didn’t go as smoothly as I hoped, but part of that is my fault in changing my mind. Here are the first three sewn together.

Be My Neighbor Blocks 1-3

I started off with the quarter square triangles. I see these as flower boxes, so I picked out two flower prints, cut my squares, marked the lines and chain stitched.

Be My Neighbor Quilt Block 4 ~ From My Carolina Home

This time, because I knew I would need a specific size at the end, I cut the squares a bit bigger than the pattern said, and squared them up after they were assembled.

Be My Neighbor Quilt Block 4 ~ From My Carolina Home

As I was looking at my basket of spring scraps, I thought I could make a house white since the background isn’t white on my blocks. I cut house bits in white, background in sky.

Be My Neighbor Quilt Block 4 ~ From My Carolina Home

I began assembling, this time following the directions. Maybe this block will go a bit better than the others.  I did chain piece wherever  possible.

Be My Neighbor Quilt Block 4 ~ From My Carolina Home

Coming together nicely, and all the pieces are fitting well.

Be My Neighbor Quilt Block 4 ~ From My Carolina Home

And I don’t like it. The big expanse of white looks like I forgot something. Great. I thought about just leaving it, but it bugged me.

Be My Neighbor Quilt Block 4 ~ From My Carolina Home

I decided to do it over with yellow for the house.  I changed the window print too, rather than frog all that out.  It was easier just to cut another roof triangle and start the center section over.

Be My Neighbor Quilt Block 4 ~ From My Carolina Home

Better, but that large piece on the right still looks empty. I should have picked a busier print. At this point I refuse to take it apart again, so it will stay this way. At the meeting, one of the ladies showed her block with an appliqued heart in that space, so that is an idea.  Another lady put another window in hers. I could also do some silk ribbon embroidery after the quilting to add something to that space. Or maybe just an applique door with a button handle. I don’t know what it will get, but I can figure that out later. For now, block 4 is done. On to Block 5 to catch up to the class!

What would you do with that space?

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Cleaning out the Stash

I was digging through my fabric stash resource center looking for springtime fabrics, and I think I reached my limit.  I do like things more organized, and this closet has been a mess for years.  This project took me three weeks to complete, working on it a little each day until I finally got it to a modicum of control.  I have a lot of fabrics that have been given to me, either from friends, or from people on Freecycle, and some of them I know I will not use.  In addition, I have some decorator fabrics I have held onto for years and really will never do anything with them.  I really need to get some stuff off the floor, and have my batting all together so I can find small bits when I need them. I was part way through pulling all the fabric off one of the shelves before I remembered to take a ‘before’ pic. I have often spoken of my stash closet resource center, and here it is in all its messy glory. The closet is 10 feet wide, 8 feet high and almost three feet deep, stuffed to the rafters and behind the doors with fabric, batting, bits and pieces left over from projects gone by, clothing, wool felt, cotton felt, DMC floss, patterns and other stuff.

Stash Reorganization ~ From My Carolina Home

The fabric is what I wanted to concentrate on. I have so much that I will never use, likely not ever miss either if it was gone. So, one shelf at a time, I pulled everything off onto the table and sorted it. Some bits were put into a large zippered clear plastic blanket bag, to be given to the humane society thrift store for a grab bag. It has everything that isn’t quilting cotton like denim, silk, satin, upholstery fabrics and some notions. Other larger quilting cotton pieces were put into 2 bags for the Cancer Care group to use in charity quilts. Some really small bits went into a bag for the local ministry’s shredder program. I gave myself permission to just donate this pile that I normally would press and cut into pieces for scrap quilts. I have so much that I am just going to do a purge for once and start over. Won’t be long until I have more, and I still have bins of scraps.   Most of the scraps are in a tower of stacking bins about six feet high, next to the bookshelves on the other side of the basement.

Stash Reorganization ~ From My Carolina Home

Stuffed into the shelves and hanging on hangers in the laundry room were several dresses I made some years ago. Remember when we all wore these dresses over short sleeve t-shirts and flat shoes? I made several out of fun quilting cottons and corduroy, and wore them almost daily. Now I want to reclaim the fabric that I can from the skirts for other uses.

Stash Reorganization ~ From My Carolina Home

The dress style is mostly out of style, but actually with a sweater over the dress instead of a t-shirt under, it could pass nowadays. So I might keep the Hawaiian print. The Christmas print is corduroy, and still cute. But I need to remake it into just a skirt, and get rid of the bodice part. There is plenty of fabric to do this, I just need to dig out a good pattern and get it done.

Stash Reorganization ~ From My Carolina Home

I had one for Easter too. Cutting the bodice off, and removing the buttons, it went into the shredder bag.  The skirt was cut apart at the seams, pressed and folded for use in another project.

Stash Reorganization ~ From My Carolina Home

Clearing one shelf, I put a plastic dry-cleaner bag down on the shelf to protect the fabric from wood stain.  Although I really don’t think this is an issue, one piece of fabric did appear to be stained, so let’s not take a chance. You can see there is still a jumbled up mess on the shelf below, with a forgotten denim shirt and other large pieces of dressmaker fabric like gabardine and challis.  I’m going to put some of it up for sale, and a couple of pieces will become new pj’s.

Stash Reorganization ~ From My Carolina Home

The bolts of fabrics will stay where they are, and I will be winding more bolts with some of the pieces I have left that are over three yards.  The bags of fabrics are in 2-gallon zip top bags, mostly separated by collection, with some leftover pieces from previous quilts in bags too.  Why do I keep all that?  I think it is just in case a quilt ever needs repair – but that is silly.  Most of those quilts I no longer have, as they have been donated or gifted.  And the gifted ones were sent with some extra fabric just in case it is ever needed.  So those bags need to be purged.

Stash Reorganization ~ From My Carolina Home

All these bits are what I call my luxury fabric box – silks, satin and velvet. I kept the largest pieces, ironed them all and put them in a sterlite container with a lid. Several pieces went into the grab bag donation.

Stash Reorganization ~ From My Carolina Home

So, all of this is getting donated one place or another – four bags of fabrics, and one of cotton felt, along with a few big flat folds of felt.

Stash Reorganization ~ From My Carolina Home

OK, now that I have some room, I gathered all the batting together, marking the small bits with their size so I can quickly find a piece when I need a small bit. I actually discovered I had two packages of black batting when I thought I only had one!

Stash Reorganization ~ From My Carolina Home

Much better. Many of the two gallon bags of fabrics have been purged, with smaller pieces pulled out for donation or for the small scrappy project I have coming up. Some of my most favorite colors have been folded and stacked where I can see all of them.  No longer are there wadded up bits, or stuffed so tightly that I cannot see the back of the closet.  The 2-gallon bags are still two deep on the shelf, but at least now I can move enough to one side to see what is behind.  All the wide backing fabrics in one stack so I know what colors there are to choose from. Fabrics longer than 3 yards were wound onto empty bolt cardboard to reduce the creasing from folding.

Stash Clean Out @ From My Carolina Home

Now, it is much easier to see what is here, all the loose fabrics are folded and sorted, and the number of bags is reduced. Now I know what I have in larger pieces fabrics as they are on bolts. The patterns were purged too, and organized into the blue pattern boxes. The little purple pattern boxes on the top shelf hold my DMC floss in numerical order, and I went through those too refiling a bunch that were just thrown on the top for later filing.  Wool felt is now all together next to the blue pattern boxes.  Plus I found three sleeves for quilts that I’ll need later in the year to prepare a few of this year’s quilts for hanging at the fair.

Stash Clean Out @ From My Carolina Home

Everything is now off the floor too, just a plastic bin left which will be used elsewhere later.  Loose bits of batting and fiberfill along with a few old fabrics and stray pillowcases will go into dog beds.  There is still the scrap tower to go, but this is enough for now!

Have you done a fabric purge lately?  How do you organize your resource center?

 

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Be My Neighbor Quilt Along – Block 3

It is the first Wednesday of the month, time to show the next block of the Be My Neighbor quilt along. It seems like block three has the most pieces of all the blocks, some really tiny! Plus it has appliqué, my nemesis. But, I am determined to do this. After all, the only way to grow is to practice. So, I cut pieces of scraps, keeping in mind that I wanted the background to be sky.

Be My Neighbor Block 3 ~ From My Carolina Home

This time I read the directions instead of jumping in. The roof section was pieced, then I started on the mailbox and windows.

Be My Neighbor Block 3 ~ From My Carolina Home

So far, so good, laying out the elements after each step.  Tiny bits make the mailbox, and I was happy that they went together as they designed.

Be My Neighbor Block 3 ~ From My Carolina Home

I like the purple for the house.

Be My Neighbor Block 3 ~ From My Carolina Home

Looking good, all done with the piecing.

Be My Neighbor Block 3 ~ From My Carolina Home

Oh, crap. Do you see what I did wrong? Of course I didn’t notice it until I took the picture. The bottom has sky fabric, so the house appears to be floating in the clouds. The bottom background pieces should be green to create a ground. So, I frogged off the bottom, and resewed it with green. Then turned my attention to the appliqué.

I started the circle on the birdhouse with a yo-yo, but that didn’t work. There were too many points instead of a smooth circle and it was too big.  Yep, you guessed it, a bit more frogging was in order.  I got out several applique books and decided on the fusible interfacing method for the appliqués. Templates were cut out of Golden Threads Paper for both fabrics and interfacing.

Be My Neighbor Block 3 applique ~ From My Carolina Home

Then the interfacings were lightly fused to the cut out bits. The hope is that I will be able to have something to guide the needle-turn and make a smooth edge. I did clip the inside curve on the bird body.  This gave the appliqué pieces a bit of body and helped create the edge as I sewed.

Be My Neighbor Block 3 applique ~ From My Carolina Home

My book says to use tiny stitches for the best result on curves, so I did my best.  Still not happy with this, the bottom edge is a bit ragged where I have sewn.  You can see the raw edge at the top where I haven’t turned it under yet.

Be My Neighbor Block 3 Applique

I pinned all the bits to the block so I wouldn’t lose any of them, and put it next to my chair for stitching on Sunday.

Be My Neighbor Block 3 ~ From My Carolina Home

The bird began with its rosy breast, I am hoping it will look like a robin.

Be My Neighbor Block 3 Applique

I couldn’t get the turned under areas to stay put, so I tried more pins. Some of these were a help, and some got in the way.

Be My Neighbor Block 3 Applique

The little tiny beak was the most trouble. I hate working with tiny pieces. I put a French knot in black for the bird’s eye.  It doesn’t look that good, but as I like to say, finished is better than perfect.  Perhaps after the entire quilt is done I’ll go back and add a tiny bead or button for its eye.

Be My Neighbor Block 3 Applique

Now it is done. I need to iron it, but it is done in time for the meeting today, yippee!!

Be My Neighbor Block 3 Applique

How’s your quilt coming along, or whatever you are working on?

 

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Scrap Dance Waltz – Trunk Show!

Doing one more update on Scrap Dance Waltz, to show you some wonderful finishes in lots of colorways!  I had such fun designing this quilt, and I now have the red and cream quilt I have wanted for some time.

waltz-final-on-bed-1

One of the great things about doing quilt-alongs is seeing what other people do with the same design.  The color choices and borders make a quilt unique, and I’d like to share a few that were shared on our Flickr group for the quilt along.  These are new shares since the last update.

Needled Mom did hers in blue and white, and I like her border choice with small squares of scrappy blues.

Scrap Dance Waltz

Ila did two quilts in low volume prints. She realized halfway through that her blocks in the quilt on the left had two patches reversed. The quilt on the right is consistent with the pattern. Still, they are both beautiful and both have that circular secondary pattern, it is just stronger on the one on the right.  I am sure the sisters are thrilled.

20170209_175244-adj

Brenda did hers in two prints, I think she is going to use this as a Christmas quilt.  Beautiful fabrics, and lots of perfect points!

DSCN2259

And here are a few you may have seen before, but newer readers may not have seen.

Tanya sewed her quilt with a wonderful grey background and lots of bright scraps.  This pattern really does chew up the scrap bin.

IMG_0360 2

Susan did a lullaby size in lovely blue and white.

Scrap Dance Waltz top finished, piecing the back now.

And Cheryl did a red and green Christmas theme.

Waltz Tango 2

Here’s one of Elaine’s two quilt flimsys, this one with a yellow border.

2016-12-27_04-01-15

I hope all these participants who showed their finished flimsy will upload a photo of the quilted finish. I’d also love to see more, if anyone else that hasn’t shared up to now would like to share.  Please be sure that your pictures are set to public when adding to the Flickr group.  In the meantime, here’s the link to the pattern on Craftsy for purchase at the intro price of just $5 –Scrap Dance Waltz on Craftsy! Thank you to all who have purchased any of my patterns!!  Today is the last day today for introductory pricing on the Scrap Dance Waltz pattern.  Tomorrow, March 1, it will go to a regular price of $8, so you can save $3 by getting it today.

And for those who are Scrap Dancing with our Two Step Mystery, be sure to share your progress on the Scrap Dance Mystery Flickr Group.  I plan to show some progress photos of that one soon.

One more quilt along in progress now is the Be My Neighbor quilt along, for those who would rather know what the final quilt looks like.  Join in the fun starting HERE, yes you have time to catch up!

What are you working on now?

 

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Building a Brighter Year Quilt

Last fall during the Autumn Jubilee, quilter Diann won the prize of quilting a table topper.  She contacted me to ask if I would do a small quilt for a charity called Building a Brighter Year instead of her table topper.  This charity supports families with infants facing medical challenges and financial hardship in Colorado.  Of course, this was a no-brainer, I had to say yes to help this very worthy cause. She mailed it to me, and I set it up on the longarm with Warm and White cotton batting.

Diann's Quilt - Quilted by From My Carolina Home

Auditioning threads, there were several that looked nice. I decided on the brown on the left as it went well with the backing fabric she sent.  It is also polyester, so it adds a bit of shine to the work.  The bobbin has Bottom Line.

Diann's Quilt - Quilted by From My Carolina Home

Quilting it was fast, as it was small.

Diann's Quilt - Quilted by From My Carolina Home

I thought this sweet pantograph of hearts would look nice.

Diann's Quilt - Quilted by From My Carolina Home

The scale was good for a small quilt, giving a nice density to the quilting.

Diann's Quilt - Quilted by From My Carolina Home

I trimmed it for her, and shipped it back to her last week. She will add the binding, and then donate it to the charity for their silent auction, which will be in April. Thanks, Diann, for letting me participate with your charity! Her blog is Little Penguin Quilts, and I imagine she will show the finished quilt there when she gets it done.

Are you doing any charity sewing?

 

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