Wednesday, March 9, 2022

Scrappy 'T'

I've been sewing 'a block a day' since January 1st.  My stash is limited to strips and random fabric scraps in the winter.  I've posted block pictures on my instagram account, vickihodge11.  Stop by if you're interested in what I'm up to.

Thanks for visiting!

Sunday, September 13, 2020

I'm Late, I'm Late

I did finish my August mini before month end.  I'm just late in posting.  Once again, I used blocks from the 'junk' drawer.  The hst's finish at 1", inner sashing 3/4", dark border 1/2", and outer border 2 1/2".  The top is sandwiched waiting in line for hand quilting.  The binding will be cheddar.

A peek at the back - 

My current hand quilting project is pesky- completed quilting is hard to see which makes marking difficult.  I started quilting this at the Nante quilt show in April, 2019.  It's past due for completion.

I'm hoping the piecing muse visits me soon ;( !

Tuesday, August 4, 2020


I can't seem to settle.  I jump from project to project, starting new things and moving on.  I did finish the granddaughter's tshirt quilt.  So, July turned to August and no little quilt.  I have a simple doll bed that needed accoutrements - that became my Saturday, Aug 1st activity.

I used the 4 Patch quick piecing method.  Cut two squares twice the normal dimension.  For a 2" finished 4 Patch, you would normally cut 4 - 1 1/2" squares.  To quick piece, cut 2 - 3" squares to yield two 4 Patch blocks.  Sew two opposing sides with 1/4" seam allowance.  Cut the square in half both horizontally and vertically.  You're ready to sew the final seams on two 4 Patch blocks.

My little quilt required 18 4 Patch blocks and I cut 36 squares (half light, half dark), so I had double the blocks needed.  I used some of the extra units (not sewn into 4 Patch) in the outside border and the remainder are tucked away for the future.

I centered the little quilt on another of my scattered projects (four large blocks comprised of hst) on the design wall - a fun surprise that it fit perfectly.  That won't be the case when the four hst blocks are sewn together.

And the little quilt all alone -

Here's hoping this month brings a little more focus to my ramblings.  Wishing you a happy, healthy August!

Friday, June 26, 2020

Bits and Bobs, Odds and Sods

June has marched at double speed for me - no thought for my little quilt and we're on the last week.  So, yesterday I dug out the odd blocks hiding in a drawer and pulled something together.  It was a fun process and by evening the top was together.  I started with the border hourglass (18) and hst (2) blocks which finish at 3.5 - 20 blocks computed to a 21" square finished outer measurement leaving a 14" inner square to fill.  Four identical nine patch blocks (finishing at 3") became the 6" center square leaving 4" on each side.  Two rows of a combination of 2" finished four patch (32) and hourglass (8) blocks finished up the top.  I see partial stars in a couple spots - like they're peeking out from behind clouds.  I think this one will be fun to hand quilt - lots of different fabrics to study.

I've been doing some knitting - finished two sweaters and a few cowl, scarf pieces and made a tshirt quilt.  I really should be culling and organizing, but that's not much fun.

I'm anxious to start putting the scrappy stars together, but need to finish piecing the hst.  Soon!

Jax approves of June's little quilt.  Oh, those sweet puppy eyes!

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Darting Birds

What a sweet block.  The Brackman 'Encyclopedia' attributes the block name to Nancy Page, dating it to 1920 - 1940.  I used a Grace's Garden charm pack by Betsy Chutchian for piecing.  The large florals from the collection were lovely and I wish I had purchased some yardage when the line was current. There was inventive cutting involved to get the pieces required from the 5" fabric squares.  I've often purchased charm packs for small quilts to facilitate a color theme.  This is my first piece using a charm pack.  It took three design ideas to action that plan - finite amounts in specific fabrics was a challenge.  I didn't use the solid squares from the pack (and there were about 10 from the pack of 42 squares).  I added three large square pieces to complete the top.  This added fabric looks best with a brown border, so I'm waiting for access to my stash.  I love the motion created where four pieced blocks float around a center square.

I completed the alphabet sampler I've been working on.  The chart is attributed to German printer Johann Schonsperger (1455 - 1521).  I questioned the absence of the letter 'J' when the letter 'S' was duplicated.  An online search cleared the mystery - a clear distinction between 'I' and 'J' was made in 1524 by the Italian grammarian Gian Giorgio Trissino.  I didn't find a clear answer as to why 'U' was missing (unless it's part of the 'W') or why 'W' appears before 'V'.  I included the 1520 date to remind me of the timeframe of the chart.  Luckily, I used a color catcher in the bowl I cleaned the sampler in - that red was not colorfast!  I have a dark wood frame waiting for some attention before framing.

My cigar box of 'pieces and parts' is filling up.  Scrappy stars in my future!

Monday, April 20, 2020


My monthly little quilt celebrates our golden anniversary which passed quietly.  We're safe and healthy, so quiet is fine with us.  I was looking for happy in my quilting so the sunshine yellow replaced a gold - there's a lot of happy in that yellow :)  The center Wedding Ring block is 5".  The inner border is 3/4", cause that's what I had.  That dictated the hst at 1 5/8".  That took the block to a scant 10".  The Double Four outer border blocks are 2 1/2" which worked with a little easing.  The quilt will finish at 15".

The outer border needs to be an even number of blocks to work.

And just for fun, a view of the back -

When I first saw this thistle weed, there was a huge bumblebee on the big flower.  By the time I got back with my tablet, he was gone - but still a great picture of an eye-catching weed.

Have a great week!  Stay safe and be happy.

Monday, March 23, 2020

Twinkle, Twinkle

Another little quilt to add to the hand quilting waiting list.  The spark was the purchase of three fat quarters at a local quilt show and an antique Ohio Star scrappy quilt from American Quilt Classics from the Collection of Patricia Cox, p 126.  The c. 1875 quilt, shown below with my fat quarters, reminds me of the lullaby that is the first exercise of piano students.

My little quilt will finish at 25".  The Nine Patch and Ohio Star blocks are 4.5".  The inner border (one of the fat quarters) is 3/4".  The outer border finishes at 2.25".  The borders are added log cabin style to accommodate the length of the light fabric - only 1/2" to spare.

These sweet star blocks are a comfort during these crazy days.  I might make more scrappy stars with a common alternate block fabric (like the original) - simple pleasures!

I'm thankful for - 1) my location - sunshine and warm temps to walk; 2) healthy family - no incident as yet; 3) cherished friends - Jamie, if you're visiting, and Jan; 4) wifi to allow long-distance contact and expanded TV; 5) online library access!

Take care!!

Friday, March 6, 2020

Quilting by the Gulf Quilt Show

I attended the Venice Area Quilt Guild show today.  It is mostly an art and modern quilt show - lots of great work and good vendors.  The book sale area was well stocked with great titles.

Here are a few of my favorites -

'My Husband's Ties' by Janice Tuck, a memorial quilt made from silk ties for a close friend.

'Amalfi', a first place winner by Deborah Iversen

'Batik Dresden Neighborhood' by Sue Balazs - a happy community.

'Starry Night' by Crystal Allan, quilted by Frank Palmer, is based on Alexandra Ledgerwood's Floating Prisms.

'Wonky Log Cabin' by Crystal Allan received an honorable mention ribbon.

It was a great show - lots of smiling faces.

I picked up a few books for my winter library and three fat quarters.  These fabrics will be the foundation of my March mini.  The wheels are turning!

I hope you enjoyed taking a peek at my favorites.

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Quirky Little Oak Leaf

My February little quilt is a reproduction of an online auction quilt that I pinned from Pinterest.  I love that the center applique block seems to be an orphan - colors are not repeated in the pieced blocks.  I used Dear Jane block M-7, Junko's Rose Garden, to get started on the applique center.  I drew my own oak leaf and petal (I don't know what the tear drop shape is supposed to represent) using Gwen's drafting tips.  Those pesky inner points are the reason applique is not my forte.  It was great fun digging thru scraps to replicate the quilt!

The center applique is 7" and the hourglass blocks are 1 1/2".  The indigo strips are 1".  [finished dimensions]  The quilt will finish at 18" square.  I'm thinking indigo binding.

I found a backing fabric in my stash (only two to choose from) and eked out batting from leftovers.  The quilt sandwich is basted, but I know it won't be quilted by the end of the month.

Happy February - winter is progressing.  Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, January 31, 2020

January Progress

My January Mini was a record-breaker for me - inspiration to binding in eight days!  The quilt is 12" square, so hand quilting breezed along.  I followed the character (wrong turn on a couple blocks) to replicate the charm of the original.  There are 36 1" hourglass blocks in the center and 12 3" Four Patch blocks.  I might not have chosen the best backing, but my winter stash is limited.  Washing added a lot of texture - I used Quilter's Dream Request batting.

Here's my January progress on Dear Jane -

Triangle Right 7, F8 Church Window, D10 Battlefield, Triange Right 13, D12 Crosse Swords, A8 Florence Nightingale, J3 Rick's Volleyball Net, and A6 Uncle Homer.  The block that's missing sashing is A11 Pebble's Protest.  I ran out of fabric to finish the narrow outer block border so hoping I'll find more of the fabric when I return home in the spring.  The DJ blocks finish at 4 1/2" - tiny when the block contains lots of pieces.

I'm also working on a large quilt I started at a November retreat.  This project is fun to intersperse with other sewing because all the cutting is done!

I've selected my February Mini and started drafting the center applique block.  More Hourglass in my future this month.

Thanks for stopping by - Happy Stitching!

Thursday, January 23, 2020

Excuses, Excuses

I've been creating my posts on a tablet - no keyboard.  It  suddenly stopped charging a few months ago.  The worst consequence was the loss of three years of photos :(  I'm hoping my tech savvy grandson can help me out when he's home from college.

The upside is Christmas brought me a Microsoft Surface (hybrid laptop/tablet).  I'm loving the keyboard, file system, and Office apps.  I'm hoping to be more consistent in blog posts.

Poking around on the internet on Tuesday, I found Katy's post on her 2019 Small Quilts.  What a great idea!  I'm on board - 'A Mini a Month'!  I started Tuesday night, finished the top on Wednesday and sandwiched and started hand quilting today.  What fun!

A 2020 goal is to get my Dear Jane into a completed top.  I started the quilt more than 20 years ago.  I'm roughly half done.  I'm targeting mid November - before the Dear Jane Retreat in Shipshewana.  I've been making good progress in January.

I hope your New Year has started off on a positive note.  Happy stitching!

Scrappy 'T'

I've been sewing 'a block a day' since January 1st.  My stash is limited to strips and random fabric scraps in the winter.  I...