Friday, December 28, 2007

Blocks and blockhead

First the blockhead... he KNOWS he's not supposed to be on this shelf, but the new cat tree puts it within climbing distance. Today he knocked off the stuffed siamese on the corner and sat there himself. He reminds me of the Sesame Street song: One of these things is not like the other... one of these things just doesn't belong...

I've been collecting siamese cats for about ten years now. The breakable ones and the ones I don't want to become cat toys are inside the doors, the ones on top were all gifts. :)

And I've just finished step four of Bonnie's Quiltville mystery, 40 triangular green/white units:

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Christmas Gifts

Merry Christmas, everyone!

Unveiling some of the things I couldn't blog about in case family read my blog. First, my sister in law holding a set of hot mats and a table topper kind of thing I made for her granite countertops. She says the chilly granite seems to absorb the heat from any food she puts out on it. The silvery looking fabric used on the back is what they sell for ironing board re-covering, it should be able to take a very hot pan, AND reflect the heat back. I used a very thick cotton towelling for the batting:

Then, here's my folks opening their new pillow shams to match the new quilt made for their king size bed. Does anyone have any good way to wrap a big quilt? I ended up just using a large leaf bag after looking in vain for one of those huge green ones they sell to bag the old tree with.

Here they're being silly under their new quilt. The EQ pattern for this one you may have seen waaaaay back on my blog in February '07. I can't believe it's been a year in the making - I started all the half square triangles starting last January. The only change I made to that design was to increase the border sizes.

Here's my mom reading the label - I tried to burn that part of the photo in, so you could read the words, but the flash whited it out too much. When I was cutting the fan blade shaped wedges, I saved all the scraps, and where I could salvage a 2½ square, I did. I used some of them for the label border, and still have a lot left. Little blue and white squares will be useful somewhere, I'm sure!

Finally, here's my older two grand nieces, sitting on the couch, opening gifts:

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Guessing at the Quiltville Mystery

I like to play on my EQ program as well as make 'real' quilts... so based on what Bonnie at Quiltville has us doing so far for the mystery ... and thinking that she might have us use the triangle ruler to make half square triangles, here's some guesses (in my Christmas fabrics) as to where she might be going with it:

Of course, Leah also did some guessing, and her guesses include quarter square triangles and 4 patches, so maybe I need to go play with adding in some of those too!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

More 9 Patch Blocks and a Mug

Here's another 80 of these little 3½ inch square 9 patch blocks for step 3 of the Quiltville Mystery quilt - she says we're done with the 9 patches now... :) Although I don't really mind, aren't they cute? I really admire quilts that have a lot of little pieces, and doing a hundred baby blocks every week is a painless way to do it.

They'll look better when they're pressed, but I'll wait for instructions on whether to press those last two seams to the inside or outside.
I've also taken an idea I saw on Tazzie's blog for a nice little Christmas gift. Do you recognize the little 1½ inch squares of Christmas fabric from anywhere?

Mine won't be as beautifully packaged as Tazzie's are, but I did borrow her idea about putting a square of cardboard under the mug mat before I put the mug on top and wrapped them both in cellophane. I also got one of those big containers of loose hot chocolate, put three heaping tablespoonfuls in a baggie, added some mini marshmallows and tied the little bag of 'gourmet mix' on the outside of the gift. The purple candy in the mug is coffee flavored, if they want to add one to the hot chocolate, that might be interesting... :)

Another idea is to take a plastic spoon, melt some chocolate, and dip the spoon several times, letting it cool between dips, so you have kind of a chocolate lollypop spoon to stir your hot chocolate with. You wrap that in plastic, tie some curly ribbon around the 'throat' of the spoon, and stand it chocolate side up in the mug you're giving. It'd be a pain to just make one though - be better if you were giving several of these as gifts.

Monday, December 10, 2007

More Quiltville Mystery blocks

Here's my finished step 2 of the mystery, 100 nine patch blocks with three light corners, four dark sides, and one corner the accent color. I also cut the spacer blocks you see off to the right side, a stack of white and green 3½ inch squares.

And here's my nosy 'helper' trying to see why I spread out all these nice soft stacks of ten blocks... is it a kitty napping-place perhaps? Did I bury any mousies under there?

Decided that I didn't want only white-on-white for the white squares, but scrappier whites, so I went digging in my FQ piles and drawers. I found some fabrics that hadn't made my 'Christmas' collection, but could go nicely in a holiday themed quilt. Then I went out and bought the red and green on white snowflakes, found some precut strips that I picked all the white or cream bits out of, so now I have some snowflakes, some white on white, some snow covered trees with teeny redbirds, white with small gold metallic stars, and last, added in the two Christmas themed FQ's on white I wasn't going to use because I only had two.

Ready for the next step! Wonder what this quilt's going to look like?

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

100 Rail Fence Blocks

I took the bait and decided to start Bonnie Hunter's Mystery quilt, from Quiltville. She is calling it Carolina Crossroads, there's the link. Even though I normally don't like mysteries, I like her designs a LOT, and thought it might be a perfect chance to use up some Christmas fabrics. So far, I'm using 8 green prints and 4 reds, all from my stash. My light color will be white, I think.

So here's the first installment, 100 rail fence blocks, next to the white I plan on using:

She's also started a yahoo group for chat about the mystery, and last time I checked, she had 668 members signed up to do the mystery. They're not only from all over the United States, but all over the world, Sweden, Canada, Norway, Denmark, Australia, etc. That's pretty impressive for only getting the group started about 48hours ago!
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