Lucy Boston

Thursday, September 25, 2014

the start of a new great-nephew quilt

I'm thinking an 'eye spy' type of quilt,
maybe in the 16-patch/X block layout...

something that's not too elaborate,
since the little/big guy is already here!
(little because he's newborn, big because he weighed in at almost 10 lbs.!)

I gathered up a whole bunch of boyish novelty fabrics -
48 to be exact,
and cut a 2 1/2 inch strip from each fabric.
Here are most of the strips of novelty fabrics that I cut: 
I sub-cut 10 inch cuts from each fabric, sewed four of them together, sub-cut again
and sewed them into 16-patch blocks.
Here they are, unpressed:
Now, just to make some 'X'-blocks as the alternating blocks!

Problem though...
I chose a light tan mini print for the setting fabric, 
but after I did some figuring, and I don't have enough. 
The other setting fabric options I've found so far are white/light fabrics, and the new little/big guy's family lives very rural-y, and they have well water, so a light/white setting fabric just won't work well for them.

More digging through the stash closet yet to come!
If you don't hear from me for a few days, please send help -
I may have fallen into the rabbit fabric hole!! :)

What are you stitching on??

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

month 9 of 10 block of the month

I've been sewing along this year 
with Cindy of Quilt Doodle Doodles 
and her design of a Block Of the Month.

And, surprise, surprise,
even though I changed it up a little (by cutting all my pieces half-sized),
I've kept up! :)
Here's my September block:
Sixty little (3/4" finished) squares in a tree block that measures 5 1/2" by 8 1/2".

One of the reasons I chose to do this BOM sew-along 
was that it was only for 10 months,
January through October.
That means that when that last block comes out for October,
I can have a finished quilt top for THIS WINTER!!
Perfect planning on Cindy's part, wasn't it??

So, one last surprise block to come next month,
and then some embellishment,
And hopefully a finish for this Winter!

Have you joined in any sew-alongs this year?

Monday, September 22, 2014

ready or not, Autumn! quilts and stew

I don't know about you, but I'm not ready to let Summer go.
The Autumnal equinox is today.
Well, actually tonight, around 10:30 EST.

Crisp, cooler nights,
shorter daylight hours,
comfort food cooking,
and time to get the quilts changed around.
A table quilt that I made a couple of years ago,
with great Civil War reproduction fabrics and muslins -
a great scrap quilt that I love!

I pulled the summer-y table-topper quilts (from every flat available surface in the house), and threw them all in the wash, then hung them out on the porch to dry.  And, I even dusted a little
before throwing the Autumn inspired quilts
onto the tables and stands
where they can be admired for the next couple of months.

I don't have the wall quilts changed out yet, but that will happen sometime this week.  Maybe.  Probably.

And, since the weather has started it's Autumnal change, 
I even made a Stew for dinner.
My favorite Stew recipe came from 
a quilt shop owner/friend (Thanks, Linda!- I miss you guys!) ,
and I like it because it can be made as is, doubled or even tripled EASILY as needed for family gatherings.  It takes just a little (easy) prep time, then slide it into the oven to finish up while you go to church or play outside with the grandchildren.
And, since Autumn has arrived, ready or not,
I thought I'd share my Stew recipe with you...

Oven Beef Stew
3 tablespoons olive oil, heated in dutch oven on stove top
1 1/2 pounds beef cubes - 1 inch, browned in hot oil on stove top
After browned, remove from heat and top with:
1 pound carrots, cleaned and cut into 1 inch chunks
~1 pound new potatoes, cleaned and quartered
half of a large, sweet onion, quartered (or jar of 12-16 small white onions, not pickled)
10 oz. peas, frozen

In skillet, make a sauce - start with:
1 tablespoon flour
2 tablespoons ketchup
1 1/2 cups cold water  
Stir over medium heat until thickened and smooth, then add:
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1/8 teaspoon thyme
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 bay leaf, whole
1 tablespoon parsley, chopped

Bring sauce to a boil, then pour over beef and vegetables.**
Cover and bake at 350 degrees for one and a half hours.
Makes 6 hearty servings.

(** at this point, you can put it (covered) into the fridge overnight, 
then just pop into the oven the next day - just add an extra 15 minutes baking time.) 

Remove bay leaf and serve with a green salad and some crusty bread or biscuits.
Oven Beef Stew - half gone,
because we ate before I remembered I was going to take a picture!!
My notes:
  • When I make this, I usually double the carrots & peas, and make a double sauce, too.
  • Sometimes I set the oven at 325 degrees & bake for 2 hours, if I need the extra time to play!
  • I use a cast-iron/enameled dutch oven, and this seems to cook a little faster.  If you don't have cast iron, you may have to add 15 minutes baking time to the above times.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

baby quilty finish

I stalled and stalled...
just needed to stitch in the new, great-niece's name and day of birth
to get it off the long-arm machine.
She was born on August 25th,
and I knew the name that day,
so really, I was just stalling.
It was a simple job to stitch the birth specifics,
but I didn't do it that week for whatever reason.
Finally got it done and off and trimmed,
then it took me another week to get it bound...

I do like how it turned out.
It finished 40" by 48" - a good size for a baby, I think,
The new great-niece lives out of town, so
I don't get to meet her until mid-October.
But, here's her quilt:
And the quilt back (made with left-over blocks):

A closer view of the fabrics and my free-hand quilting:
Next up, a start for the new great-nephew!
Hopefully it won't take me as long as this one did!

Happy Stitching to you!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

a little more Lucy - POTC

I've been feeling under the weather, so not much stitching going on,
but this week I did make another Patchwork of the Crosses block 
as a fill for one of my last two rows:
I thought my Lucy needed another yellow/light colored block
and I had this great stripy/squares fabric.
Even though it's a pretty strong yellow,
I think the browns in the fabric makes the block seem Autumn-like.
And, notice the first fallen leaf on the grass beside it?
I'm not ready for the falling leaves!
It still feels to me that it should be Summertime ,
Anyway, here's a close up of the block:
And the fabrics that I used:
I don't have info on all of the fabrics, but here's what I do have:
The light colored little stripe on top is by Andover, (inspired by a quilt from the International Quilt Study)
The center piece, the stripe with rows of squares, is not marked on my cut,
and the bottom yellow with dots is Village Collection by Judie Rothermel/Marcus.

Now to add all the little connecting squares!
And enjoy the sunshine, yes, Autumn sunshine, while it's here.

Happy Stitching!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

nose job... err, beak-ectomy

Flags of the American Revolution...
The stitch-along (with Lori of Humble Quilts blog) has started.
I don't think I can leave it!!!

I thought after I had the entire center eagle medallion stitched in place,
that it wouldn't bother me. 
That is a goose head!
 But I just can't.
I had to get out the scissors.

Off with the beak!!

On with an eagle beak!

OK, I'm feeling better now. :)

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

nine-patch fun

I have issues. :)
(Don't we all? - please say it's so :)
My issues are, well, numerous.
As numerous as the irons I have in the fire.
Which is my problem - irons/fires.

This time, this iron/fire is -
a block swap I signed up for in July. 
It's a 9-patch block swap, 
and I only have to make 50 pairs of blocks 
in Civil War reproduction fabrics to send.

Not that I have to justify it,
but... here goes anyway :)
I figured it was a good way to use up more of my stash, 
I'll end up with blocks in fabrics I (maybe) don't have in my stash,
and, I have until October 1st to mail my finished blocks.
No pressure, right?

Barb (who blogs at Fun With Barb) is hosting/organizing
and I was so excited to get into the group!
(Unfortunately, the swap group is already filled and sign-ups are closed, 
but you can go check out the 9-patch tutorial 
that Barb is recommending for use for this swap.)
Bonnie Blue, New Town Farm/Williamsburg, Indigo by Nance Gere.
I cut my 4 1/2 inch square fabric pairs weeks ago
and planned to sew a few every day.
That didn't happen.

Fast forward to this week, and I cranked them out.
All ready to send off to Barb.
And early,  imagine that!

Happy Stitching!!

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Lucy Boston POTC August 2014

Lucy, Lucy, Lucy!

With all of the family/summer/fun stuff going on the past three months, I've not kept up with what I wanted to on my Lucy.
I did get another row of seven attached!!!
August 2014 - Top row added!!
Now there is a decision to make...
maybe you can help me?
Here is my Lucy POTC on my Mitchell-Rammelsberg antique bed:
August 2014 
And here's the foot board of the bed:
 Mitchell-Rammelsberg bed foot board, 
August 2014 
Seems a shame to me to have the Lucy quilt cover that dusty gorgeous wood.
Leave the two bottom corner blocks in or not??
So, let me know your thoughts, please.  I have a couple months to come to a decision.

Here are individual pictures of this month's blocks:
August 2014 - row 6
August 2014 - row 6
August 2014 - row 6
August 2014 - row 6
August 2014 - row 6
August 2014 - row 6
August 2014 - row 6
Twenty months into it, I'm still lovin' the process.
But at this point, I'm missing the fussy-cutting though,
since I'm down to some muslin honeycomb pieces and little blue connecting squares.
I can tell already that there is going to be 
a let-down when this quilt is finished.  :)

Happy September and Happy Stitching!

Friday, September 5, 2014

new project excitement

I''m always excited to start another project.
Almost too much so.
Are you also eager to get going on a project?

To start my hand-applique stitching on my
Flags of the American Revolution quilt sew-along,
I had to dig out my applique threads bag...
a bag that I passed up the first dig-through
because this is what I saw:
The the jumbled mess of embroidery floss, pearl cotton and bit of wool inside the bag came from an old project... I guess the last time I used it was when I was working on my Snowy Days quilt, in which I hand-appliqued wool on cottons, and then big-stitch quilted with blue hand-quilting thread and snow-like pearl cotton.  The blue hand-quilting thread is what gave me the clue to the project I'd done last with this little bag of threads.

So, my silks, the blue hand-quilting thread, and thimble were on other side of the jumbled mess:
That's what I was looking for!
Excitement is reason that I don't put away stuff before I start the next project, right??

Happy Stitching!

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Eagle Medallion - accountibility and motivation

Lori, at Humble Quilts is having a sew-along!
She's been wanting to stitch
 the 'Flags of the American Revolution' quilt,
a pattern/book by Jan Patek.
Since the same quilt has been on my list of quilts I'd like to do,
I decided to join in!
YAY - I need another project going! :)
Inspiration, accountability, and motivation is definitely needed around here!

She put out an invitation in mid-July, 
and the first month to start stitching was August.
And I signed up, 
knowing that my August was jam-packed-full of
fun stuff already.
Fun stuff like my sonny-boys' out-of-state destination wedding,
hosting my annual, paternal family reunion,
and watching grand babies.
Fun Stuff, huh?

Why did I think I could accomplish this FOAR quilt/sew-along, also?
Well, I figured that I could pre-prep the applique and
stitch all the way back and forth to the destination Destin wedding.

Yeah, that didn't happen.  
Neither the prep nor the stitching.
So, on Labor Day Monday, I labored,
by prepping and stitching,
and though it's not the finished center medallion of the quilt,
here's my eagle:
My eagle medallion, minus chest bars, eye, arrow and olive branch.
I left the right foot un-stitched so I could insert the olive branch.
Wasn't thinking when I stitched around the left foot -
on a roll, I guess, so I'll have to un-stitch a little there to insert the arrow that he's supposed to be holding on that side.
There are little white-headed applique pins where it still needs stitched: the bottom of the right wing and the top of the right leg and foot.
This picture shows what I actually had done before the last day of August:
I had gathered a boat-load of fabrics.  

And THAT is why I joined this group -
Inspiration, accountability and motivation!

There is a sharing page/linky each month, 
you can check it out HERE if you'd like to see all the GREAT works-in-progress.
Lori is sharing pictures for folks who don't blog, and the links for those who've blogged about their work-in-progress.
Thanks, Lori!  It's going to be fun!!