Saturday, June 2, 2018

School's Out for Summer

It's hot in Texas, as usual, we've already had a named storm in the Gulf, and both my son and my husband (a teacher) are getting to sleep in every day now.  It must be summer!!!  I was so relieved and overwhelmed by my guild's quilt show being over that it took me a week or two to get back into the swing of things again.  My brain, I think, needed a little time to rest and think about nothing!  But, that didn't last too long.  Let's see, what can I show y'all this month?

Let's start with something that I actually checked off of my list this month.  To start, I put another border on my medallion quilt.  Yippee!  I started this quilt a little over two years ago, when I took Winnie Fleming's Ultimate Borders class with Mom.  Since then, it's basically been sitting in a box, waiting for me to pick it up again.  I can officially say that I've picked it up again, and I'm still loving the colors and the way it's shaping up!  There's only one more border left to do (plus another floater border) before it's finished.  The last border will be half Lonestars, using the same colors as the center Lonestar.  It'll be gorgeous, although I'm not looking forward to all of those y-seams!

Another border complete on my medallion quilt!
Speaking of medallions and Lonestars, here's a photo of my friend Cynthia's medallion quilt.  In the photo, she's auditioning a nice dark print for the setting triangles.  My medallion quilt is similar in setup to hers, except for some of the middle border choices... and the colors, of course.  She's almost finished and I'm not scared admit that I'm a little jealous of all those finished half Lonestars!  So pretty!

Testing setting triangle fabrics on Cynthia's medallion quilt.
Back to stuff I've been checking off!  I've been participating in Barbara Brackman's Antebellum Album block-of-the-month group this year, and had fallen behind.  Actually, I was just putting it off because Month 3 was a block with about a bazillion y-seams in it!  Okay, maybe I'm exaggerating, but it scared me to death.  I finally decided to go for it, and got it done!  I'll admit that I had to rip out some seams and restitch because it was looking too lumpy for my taste, but I'm happy with the final outcome.  I also finished the Month 4 block, and will start working on Month 5 in the next couple of weeks.

Antebellum Album Month 3 - Friendship Star

Antebellum Album Month 4 - Quaker Pride
I also got a couple of community service quilts done.  The first is a brightly colored string quilt.  I played with variegated thread on this one, since it was already so colorful, and I like how it turned out.  I'm most proud of the second one.  I practiced my custom quilting skills and used several Joyce Lundrigan patterns, which I'm absolutely in LOVE with!  The borders are fantastic, and the blocks are gorgeous.  I'm going to have to make a duplicate quilt to keep for myself!

Community Service string quilt.

Close up of Community Service string quilt.

Community Service custom quilted.

Close up of Community Service custom quilted.

Back of Community Service custom quilted.

Now, on to what I've started this month.  I know I have enough already started to keep me busy for years, but sometimes I just can't help myself!  A couple of quilter friends and I have started doing an exchange of teeny tiny, 2-inch (finished) stars, to make the quilt Stardust from the book Every Last Piece by Lynn Harris.  It's such a beautiful quilt!  We're going for a smaller version, more twin size than queen size, only because we want to finish in our lifetimes.  It takes me about an hour per star, and we're making 15 stars each month so we'll finish toward the end of next year.  Whew!  It will be gorgeous!!!

My set of tiny test stars.  Pay no attention to the one with the off-kilter point.

Month 1's stars complete!
I also started teaching my very good friend, Sheila, how to quilt!  After going to my guild's show, she said she wanted to give it a try, so I sent her to Connecting Threads to pick an easy-to-make kit.  She came over and spent a whole day cutting, learning to use my machine (a Bernina 930), and stitching her heart out.  She's hooked!  And I think her husband is hooked as well... he's been researching sewing machines and has already found her a good 930 to buy for herself!  I can't wait to see my fledgling quilter finish her first quilt!!!

A very proud Sheila with her first completed block.
A project that I'll be starting (and finishing) very soon is this Christmas Halo quilt.  The halo star blocks were made by Mom.  Our friend Becky put them together in this beautiful wall hanging size quilt top.  I'll be quilting it and then we'll put it in our guild's annual auction to raise money for the guild.  Knowing the plans I have for quilting it, I may have to bid on it myself!

Christmas Halo wall hanging, not yet quilted.
Very last thing to note... the Texas Quilt Museum folks were here this week to pick up 30 of Mom's quilts for an exhibit there this summer.  The exhibit will run from June 28 through September 30, so if you're in Texas in the next few months, make sure you drop by to check out the show.  It should be a good one!

See y'all next month.  Keep on quilting!
Jenny Arkinson