Category Archives: Quilting

Irony – September UFO is # 9

September always marks the back to school routine for students and parents, leaves starting to change colors,and cooler temperatures. Another season is cycling away.  I am extremely proud of my UFO no more  accomplishments this year.  I have freed up many tubs. What am I to do with empty tubs?  That is so strange to not keep accumulating new projects.  This is very unusual behavior for me.  Nine months of staying on target.  Now that’s an accomplishment.

On my list it is a Fons & Porter pattern “Neopolitan Delight”.  It is a pieced quilt top.  No applique, imagine that.  Looking forward to getting started on it.

But in the meantime several things are going on.  Firstly, I have successfully revived my fig tree.  It had lost it leaves and was looking as if it had died.  I re-potted it in a larger pot (basically, I finally took it out of the nursery pot it came with when purchased) gave it new potting mix and watered it.  I will be bringing it in the house for the upcoming winter.  But for now it is on the deck and sprouting new greenery.  I am proud to say I did not murder my fig tree!!!!


Secondly I was asked to make a baby quilt for a friend to give as a gift.  The parameters were lavender and gray nursery with an owl theme.  This is what I came up with:  I am finishing the owl applique by hand.  Then there will be a gray skinny border and then a 4″ lavender border.  I am going to attempt to machine quilt it myself.  I mean after all that IS why I bought my dream machine to learn to machine quilt using it.  I have been giving myself a pep talk and am pretty ready for the challenge.


Thirdly, Vickie had let me know that my 80’s “what was I thinking” quilt is completed.  She has texted me photos and what a transformation.  I am actually liking that quilt now.  I can hardly wait to see it in person.  I will get to see it next weekend.  I will post photos when I get it.

This is what is going on in my UFO world right now.  Hope your little flying saucers are  aligning.  Have a wonderful week.



August UFO is Done!

Whenever I think of August I think of sunshine and sunflowers.  I was raised in Arkansas where the summers are hot and humid.   We did not have air conditioning but an awesome attic fan that sucked air through every window in the house and shot it out through the attic vents.  We spent out time harvesting the garden my grandmother had planted.  Picking tomatoes, butter beans, purple hull peas, corn, okra and anything else she decided the plant that year.  For a kid it seemed like hard work, but we sure enjoyed those canned and frozen veggies come wintertime.  I remember playing hopscotch in the dust  and eating ice chilled sweet watermelon.  Those long ago memories become a motion picture in my head as I work on my blocks for Autumn Joy and I am thankful to have central air and the luxury of spending my free time doing what I love most and that is quilting.

The number chosen for August’s UFO is 3.  On my list that is piecing 200 4.5″ log cabin blocks.  Well that was completed months ago.  I get a big check mark for that!!!   I have chosen to work on Autumn Joy by Sue Garman.

Today, I accomplished mocking up four blocks.  They are prepped and ready to hand applique.  The nice thing about applique is that you can modify the original pattern at any time.  Like when I screw up and forget to reverse the pattern.  Who knows that but me, right! 🙂  Or I totally redesign a house because I sewed something in the wrong place and don’t want to rip it out.  It just a little remodel that’s all.

This particular pattern was a 12 month BOM.  I have completed 7 of them and am starting on # 8.   Hopefully will have them all prepped by the end of the month with most of them actually appliqued.  So my 12 months,12 projects will be 8 of 12 with four to go!  Wooooooooie!!!    I have even put together my UFO list for 2016…  Now that is optimistic!



Plodding along with purpose.

This past week wasn’t very productive sewing wise.  But then yesterday was very productive.  I finished hand appliquéing Mr. Funny Bunny block from Sue Garman’s Autumn Joy pattern.   I am now ready to start appliquéing the second block.  I have it prepped (spray starch and freezer paper method).  I have really fallen in love with this technique.  Previously I was in the needle turn camp.  Nice to have that in my tool box when necessary, but will be using freezer paper/starch method going forward.

I also  prepped two floral appliqué blocks that finish making up what will either be a wall hanging or a table topper.  I was surprised that it took the complete day but there it is.  I just got lost in my work and really never noticed the time passing until I was finished and realized there was no more day left.  Wow, been a while since I’ve done that.



Friday night was a surprise.  It was so hot and terribly humid all day Friday.  By the time I got home from work it was absolutely oppressive.  Then the sky got black and started rumbling and the lightning appeared, the rain came down in torrents, the wind was wrecking havoc with the trees and my poor fur babies were totally terrorized.  Poor Katie couldn’t find a suitable place to hide and kept going from one end of the house to the other and alternately following me around when I was checking the status of the storm.  Those deploring eyes of hers saying, “make it stop mom”.   I was helpless so I just sat letting her put her head in my lap and petted her trying to reassure her she would be okay.  I was thankful I have gotten in the habit of unplugging my dream machine (my Bernina) when not in use as we had a power surge and lost power for a few seconds.

I did receive a very nice gift from a friend this week.  I was given a copy of a magazine I had never heard of before, “Primitive Quilts and Projects”.  It covers not only quilting but wool projects and highlighted special projects by notable names in the quilting world such as Lynette Anderson, Jan Patek, as well as   designers from Blackbird Designs and many others.  I don’t consider myself a primitive style quilter although I do admire the work.  I recognized a particular design in the magazine that was used in part in a book “Birds of a Feather” by Blackbird Designs.  I have seen several quilts made from this book and the fabrics used were not what you would classify as primitive but more light and airy feeling.  I enjoyed seeing a variation using those birds.  It’s a combination of piecing and appliqué blocks, what I like to term “folkart”.  This is one of my personal favorites in quilting to combine to two.

UFO group tomorrow, looking forward to seeing everyone’s projects.

Happy Quilting


I am a quilt top maker

I love quilting.  The whole process, from cutting out the fabric, to piecing to applique.  I even enjoy hand quilting the quilt.  I just no longer have the time to devote to hand quilting.  Especially if the quilt top is going to get finished.  I have not yet acquired the skill set for machine quilting (even though I now have my dream Bernina  with it’s wonderful BSR (bernina stitch regulator), and I have no expectation of purchasing a long arm,  I rely on others talents  with a long arm.  There are so many talented long arm quilters out there and I am blessed to have access to one who quilts my top.  Facing breast cancer puts life in perspective.  I totally look at things differently.

Since signing up for our UFO group, I have been working diligently finishing up those tops, screaming, my turn, my turn.   I have my monthly UFO to complete, then I make a list of other projects to get started on or make.  This month’s list is:

1. Row by Row  2014 (finish 2 rows and design border with 3 license plates) Sadly I am declining to participate in the 2015 Row by Row.  I would really like to spend a weekend driving around to different shops like I did last year but unfortunately I have pressing projects to try to squeeze in with my UFO list without adding more.

2. Finish Applique Class Sample (I have been asked to teach an applique class)

3. Mock up 3 blocks of Autumn Joy pattern by Sue Garman  (on my ufo list) I realized that I would not be able to get this one completed in one month so trying to get a head start.

4.  Piece Miriam’s quilt – this is a panel pieced quilt top that has panel blocks and each block has a scripture on it.  Miriam is always cold and this would be useful to wrap around her while she is relaxing in her recliner.

5. If there is anytime left in the month…. start mocking up more blocks of Autumn Joy.  or start cutting out the background fabric for  the “A Boy and Girl” quilt. Secretly, I am itching to start this quilt but am practicing delayed gratification.

I was so pleased with myself last night for how much I had gotten accomplished yesterday that I even put together my 2016 UFO list.  This time I was more realistic as to what I can actually get accomplished in one month. Going forward, my game plan is to tackle one major applique quilt a year, interspersed with pieced quilt tops, baby quilts, and lap quilts.   Words fail me to express the elation I feel when I actually accomplish the items on my monthly quilting “to do list”.  Too often I had pushed aside what I wanted to work on for other requests against me time.  I guess I am now being totally selfish and focusing on what I want to do.  I am not neglectful of my fur babies as they accompany me to my sewing room and wait patiently for me to take a break and go outside with them.  The only thing I have been neglecting is yard work.  The abundant rain we have had recently has aided in my procrastination in mowing the yard and weed whacking.  But this afternoon, I have to tackle this project.  My sister is arriving on Wednesday to spend the 4th here on the farm.  I am looking forward to her arriving so I want the yard to look nice.  So I will get this posted,put on my straw hat and gloves and go fire up the lawn tractor.  Vroom Vroom!!!!


Happy Quilting Everyone


Time Marches On…..

Here it is June.  The days seemingly are disappearing before my eyes.  My UFO projects list is whittling down as well.  Such a good feeling to put to rest the once revered projects that were starting to haunt me.  Yesterday, I went to the Sampler Club at our quilt shop.  It’s good to spend time with people who enjoy the same interests that I have.  I love the show and tell.  Such inspiration.  The creativity is awesome.

I got my log cabin quilt back from Vicky, who quilted it for me  yesterday.  It is truly beautiful.  I am considering entering it into the Ozark Empire Fair this year.  They have a special theme class of log cabin quilts.

My back is 85-90% well. I have gotten back to sewing but at a slower pace.  I sew, get up and move around to work the stiffness out of my back.  Yesterday I was able to wash a couple of windows (from the inside only).  That was a nice accomplishment.  I also was able to mow bits and pieces of the yard working the same way.  I would mow (riding mower) a little bit and then go rest my back.   Slowly getting things are getting accomplished.  Feels good.

Down to last  last 20″ of border to get appliqued, of course this was last month’s UFO, but still plugging along on it and pretty excited at the prospect of its completion.  It is so true that quilters pour their lives into their quilts.  My  Bear Hollow Quilt knows my most innermost thoughts and feelings, I believe I will need to keep it close as I have never let anyone get close enough to me to know me as well as this quilt does.

My addiction to BOM’s knows no bounds.  I truly love them.  With that said…. I recently signed up for a BOM applique pattern by Kim Mclean titled “A Boy and A Girl Albuml”.  I fell in love with the bright colors and their non traditional use in the applique.  So I will be adding this project to my list  to work on each month.


I suppose there could be worse things to be addicted to.


The Lucky Number for March is 7 – Kim Diehl pattern “Late Bloomers”

After sewing madly for two months, I took a week off and watched you tube videos on short arm machine quilting.  I also discovered a plethora of videos for my Bernina 550 QE.  I purchased my dream machine last summer and we are still getting acquainted.  So finding 66 videos covering basics to advanced usage was a real boon.  I had taken a machine quilting class at my local shop and came away a little overwhelmed but encouraged.  After watching a couple of short arm videos I practiced with my BSR and executed a respectable feather and filler background.  Not quite ready to tackle a full size project just yet but getting closer.

feather 001

Yesterday, 6 inches fresh powder.  Yuck, so over winter.  Ready for spring but looks as if it’s weeks away.


So today cutting into 30 fat quarters (which I determined have to come out of my stash – cannot purchase new) for this cute scrappy project.  It’s a perfect size for a sofa quilt.  I really like draping quilts over the back of my sofa.  I originally saw this quilt in Better Homes and Garden American Patchwork & Quilting April 2012 and fell in love with it.  The pattern came with the magazine.  Then for some strange reason I purchased Kim Diehl’s book last fall 2014 with this same quilt in it.  I guess I REALLY like it.  I had a tub that I had started collecting fabrics to make this which relegated it as UFO status so on my list it went for 2015.  Now I am making it.  YEAH….. not just a dreamer (nicer than procrastinator) but a quilt top maker.



I am hoping to get this one completed ahead of time so that I can forge ahead with one of my other UFO projects.  I have many more that are not on the list for 2015.  I am already planning my list for 2016.  I can be such a geek.

Till next time.


Big Sigh…… All Blocks Completed for # 11

All the blocks are finished for # 11.  I just have to decide on the border now.   Interviewing potential candidates tonight.  I was starting to question what attracted me to this christmas wallhanging  until I finished sewing all the blocks together and then I saw why. I enjoy the folk art type of quilt with the blending of machine piecing and applique.  I much prefer hand applique as opposed to machine applique.  I enjoy touching the fabric and the process.  Since I have finished before the deadline,  I have time to relax a bit and then clean my house, since I have let everything slide this month while working on this project. Time to get caught up before I start the next project.

#11 I Believe

# 11 – due by 2/23 Will I finish?

I have been sewing, sewing ,sewing.  I really gave myself a challenge.  # 11 is a wonderful Christmas folkart wallhanging that is pieced and hand applique.  I have completed 9 of 12 blocks.  Will layout block number 10 tonight.  Not sure what I did to my back, but somehow my posture while I am sewing has not been very good and result is I am walking bent in half.  Tylenol is helping.  At least I am able to stand upright today. For that I am very thankful.  I try to set a goal to reach each day and the back thingy slowed me down a bit. Due to an impending nasty weather forecast, my family has cancelled their trip.  I’m sorry for that but grateful that I will be free to try and get # 11 finished on time.  I usually applique using the needle turn technique.  This time I have used the starch and freezer paper technique.  I believe it is faster and am please with the results.  But then, these are large pieces, if they were small intricate pieces I believe I would need more practice with this technique to get the quality of work I am used to producing with my needle turn. And as always, I have assistance whether desired or not.  This is Tink, short for Tinkerbell.


These are what I have completed.

003 004 005 006 007 008 009 010 012 013 016

See you next time.


12 months – 12 projects ~~~~ My UFO Adventure

Hello- My very first post.  Welcome to my little blog. I signed on to participate in a UFO project at our local quilt shop.  The goal is to get those UFO’s finished.  We were to make a list of 12 projects and description of completion.  I had made several lists and discarded them as being too ambitious, and my finalized list was still edited as panic gripped me at such a huge committment.   Silly me put them in the order I wanted them completed.  A wrench was thrown in the mix by the facilitator putting the numbers 1-12 in a basket and drawing a number.  The first number drawn is # 5.  On my list that is 200 – 4.25″ log cabin blocks which represents 1/2 of a log cabin quilt I have wanted to make for years and collected the fabrics and stored in one of my many tubs.  I have been sewing furiously since January 1st on these blocks.  My goal is actually to complete 480 blocks and get 1/2 of the top sewn together.  With the time left to me I hopefully will be able to work on my #1 project which is to finish my 2014 Row by Row experience quilt top. Yesterday was my birthday so I took a vacation day so that I could blissfully sit in my sewing room and sew my little log cabin blocks.  I have completed 350.  I am on track and very proud of myself.  Big pat on the back. IMG_0848 IMG_0847

Chopin - A Passionate Quilter From Texas

I love to share my Quilting projects with other Quilters. My goal is to share my progress on projects that I am working on. I would love for you to follow along with me during my endeavors. I hope you enjoy watching me tackle new techniques and projects. Hopefully you can learn from my "hiccups" and mistakes and make your journey easier.

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