Saturday

My Small World Quilt

Jen Kingwell
Here is my finished My Small World! After 1 year and 2 months, it is complete. My daughter, Bailee bought me the pattern last year for my birthday and I started working on it immediately. I got hung up with each section that required hand applique. I don't know why. I can do it, I guess I just didn't want to hand stitch anything. But for a quilt like this one, it had to be done that way, the right way. So I muddled through making hexies by hand, Dresden plated by hand, and a some curved pieces. I learned a few tricks along the way and I have to admin, every time I finished a hand appliqued part, I wondered why I put it off. It was all so very enjoyable. I did cheat a little; I paper-pieced a few blocks which was not how the pattern was intended but I wanted to see if it made any difference in how some of the blocks turned out. I didn't. So I machine pieced most of the quilt just like the pattern said to. After lots of thought I quilted this with a pantograph called Breath of the Gods. It looks like the wind is blowing across my little world.

So now I'm on to my current crafty project - hanging deer antlers. My husband is a hunter and he had one of his deer preserved in a way called European-style. I don't understand why they call it that, it looks rather southwestern to me. Anyway, I dug out some pallet boards I've been saving and made a panel to mount the deer antlers on. Now that it's ready to be hung, I have to decide where. I think that part might take me a little while since we aren't quite done with putting things back after our new floors were installed. I guess I will leave it on the floor until I figure out where it should go.

Thursday

Client Quilts Finished

I quilted a few client quilts today and considering how busy we've been with our home improvement project, I'm surprised I found the time. I must confess, it felt good to do something more normal.

I had fun choosing the right pantograph for each of these as well and the thread colors. The quilts both turned out cute and I hope my client likes the results too.

I attended a volunteer breakfast at my granddaughters' school and we all went home with a few hand sanitizers with thank you messages attached to them made by the 5th grade art classes. Aren't they cute? I took the one that says 'I love popcorn Thursday' because I pop the popcorn for that fundraiser every month.

Wednesday

What's on the design board?

Jen Kingwell
I am happy to report that my design board only holds one quilt right now. It's my second version of the Gypsy Wife. I am trying to follow the quilt-along for this quilt as each month a new section is work on. For May, it's section 5 and I have just a few of the blocks done for that section and I plan on completing the entire section this week.

Jen KingwellThe big news for me is that I finally finished the My Small World quilt top. It is on the longarmer right now and I have to admit. I don't know what to quilt on it. Originally I used a pantograph called Good Vibrations which was just wavy lines. I thought it would be a good simple design but after quilting 4 rows, I realized it was too simple. So I ripped out the quilting and started again. It's ready for a new quilt design - whatever that might be. Ha!



Saturday

Home Project Update - Walk In Closet


Our walk-in closet is pretty large. There's even a window in it. We have to treat it like an separate room. It's that big.


Jeff tore out the carpet and moulding in the closet and prepped the room so I could paint. There's tons of Closet Maid shelving in there that has to go. I am tired of taking clothing out only to find the wire shelf imprint on the sweater I wanted to wear. These photos reflect only some of the shelving as Jeff tore out half of it before I took the photos.


Once everything was removed from the room and the walls repaired - all those holes from the anchors! - I could paint. I purchased a gallon of the best Behr paint that Home Depot has. The color is called Fresh Croissant. Surprisingly, I used almost the entire gallon painting that closet.



After the painting was done we were ready for Andy, our flooring guy to install the new floor. The day after Andy finished the closet floor, we ran to IKEA and purchased one wardrobe unit just to make sure it would fit. On paper it did, but I need the visual to see how it looked before pulling the trigger on more of the wardrobe units.

The first unit fit like a charm so we went back the next day to purchase the rest only to find out that some of the drawers are out of stock. That was disappointing as we're both getting testy since every time we want to get dressed we have to figure out which bin our clothing is in. And the stuff that's on hangers is stacked on the bed of our guest room.

Our poor kitty who is so very nervous between his domain being torn apart, a stranger in the house making so much banging noise and losing all his favorite sleeping spots, he decided to make some new sleeping spots. Jeff is not too excited about it. He asked me to keep the spare bedroom door closed but I chose not to so the kitty would have some extra hiding places since he is so freaked out.

We are making some good progress. This photo is pretty dark because there's no light in the closet yet. The rich,dark color of the closet organizers make the room feel fancy. So I am determined to find an old chandelier at the Habitat for Humanity ReStore to hang in there. In the meantime, we will just have to use the sun. Today it is supposed to snow, so the sun isn't much help right now. I hung an old embossed linen curtain panel in there. It is gorgeous. I wish I had two panels instead of just the one. On Tuesday the missing drawers will be delivered to the house so we will finish up the IKEA part of the closet installation at that time. Jeff is building a bench for under the window and some drawers and cubbies on the opposite wall from the windows. I can't wait until that's done but I'm sure it will take a while. All that sawing, hammering, staining and urethaneing takes time.

Wednesday

My Small World Home Stretch

I've been very sporadic when it comes to working on this quilt. I am happy that I've finished all the sections of this quilt except one. Of course for me, it's the hardest one. It's the one that requires tons of hand applique and English paper piecing. I don't know much about EPP but I am ready to get this finished so I will figure it out very soon.

I hand appliqued the rainbow and the dresden pieces and stitched them to their background today. In the pattern these two pieces are supposed to be hills on a countryside but in my version, I wanted a sunshine and a rainbow.

The last two appliqued pieces are hexies and an arch made up of small triangles. I really have the desire to get this done I just wish I had more free time. 

Monday

Trip to Menomonie, Wisconsin

We spent Easter weekend with my brother and his family in Menomonie, Wisconsin. It's normally a 4-hour drive that we made even longer by taking the back roads. We planned to stop at antique shops and flea markets along the way if we happened to find any. We did enjoy the view and with all the flooding that's been happening across our state, we actually got to see some up close. This is the Wolf River where the road is lined with sandbags.


We did find antique shops but I have to admit, after frequenting the Habitat for Humanity ReStores, I struggle to pay antique shop prices. Everything at the ReStore is priced to sell quickly. I've found many bargains there. I am by no means an expert on anything antique so many things I see I don't understand how it is priced. Currently, I am looking for old galvanized steel buckets. I don't care if they are a little rusty as long as they won't leak. At the antiques shop we stopped at, I've found them priced anywhere between $6 and $12. That seems like a lot for small rusty buckets.

We found a flea market in Princeton, Wisconsin. There were so many people there, it took us over an hour just to browse through all the goodies. I haggled with a farmer for a stainless steel milk bucket and ended up paying $20 for this beauty. It's a nice large size that will look cute with flowers in it on my front porch this summer.


I also picked up this chicken dish. I haggled the price down to $10. It is so pretty on my kitchen table. Just to prove my point, I took this photo next to a clear dish that is exactly the same as the bottom half of the chicken dish. I paid 50 cents for the clear dish at the ReStore. I am spoiled by the bargains I find there.

We traveled the back roads in search of an old antique dresser. Our plan is to turn a dresser into a bathroom sink. If we don't find one in the near future, we have a 'Plan B' but for now we will keep looking.

Our trip to Menomonie was wonderful. It was great to get my mother to come along. We had 4 generations together for the holiday weekend. It is difficult to photograph my mother, so sadly I have no photos of everyone together to share. Some of my favorite photos from the long weekend are of my granddaughter Chloe and my nephew Quinn together. They are close in age and like the same things. If we lived closer to each other I am certain they would be best friends as well as second-cousins.

Tuesday

Mary's Quilts

My friend Mary brought over 3 quilts last week. I told her I would do my best to get them done for her as soon as possible. As we walked over boxes of flooring to look at her quilt tops she understood why it might take a little while for me to get to quilting. She was in no hurry so it didn't matter to her. But it matters to me.

While our flooring guy, Andy was here doing the install I decided this was a good time to spend the day in my sewing studio. I would be out of his way and frankly, what else could I do? He needed lots of space to work.

I quilted one of her quilts today while chatting with Andy. Within a few hours I got one of her quilts done. It's bright and cheerful. I think Mary and I have the same taste in fabrics. I always love her quilts.

It's a nice feeling to get something normal done among the chaos of our floor project.

Saturday

Gypsy Wife #2 Quilt Along Progress

I completed the half-square triangle blocks for my second version of the Gypsy Wife today. I had so much fun choosing the fabrics for these two blocks. And I had fun putting them together.

I find it very satisfying when my pieces fit together like they're supposed to. Is it crazy that I like the looks of the blocks from the wrong side as well as the right side?

It is so important to press the seams and square up pieces to the correct size before sewing up the whole block. It make such a big difference in the results. And I love Best Press. It comes in such pretty scents and my fabrics are always crisp which helps with accuracy.

I am enjoying the Gypsy Wife Quilt Along and I am happy that the QA is doing just one section per month. It fits my time schedule perfectly.