New Orleans House Project

Saturday, February 28, 2015

RSC 15: One Final Pink Project

While enjoying Beach Music and birds at the camp last weekend, I discovered a forgotten project.  During last year's month of RSC pink, I finished a Lemoyne Star doll quilt made with some well-aged Robyn Pandolph fabrics.  That quilt didn't use up all the RP fabrics, so I decided to do the prep work for another doll quilt, this one featuring the Broken Dishes quilt block.  The resulting package of pre-cut HSTs got taken to the camp and forgotten.  When I discovered it last weekend, I knew it would be the perfect project to wrap up a month of pink scrappy playtime!
I was able to sew all the HSTs together during the week and sew the blocks into rows last night.  The scraps were pretty random, so I didn't worry too much about setting the blocks together in any particular order.  I found some scraps from my Austen Family Album project for the border and machine quilted everything today.  I had just enough the the pink RP fabric for the binding.  The final quilt measures 15" x 15".  If I can find something to watch on Netflix, maybe I can get the binding stitched down tonight.

I'll also be enjoying everyone's last day of pink playtime over at Angela's Soscrappy blog - go take a look for some scrappy inspiration!

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Sunday at the Camp with Birds and Beach Music

Dear Hubby and I retreated to our camp this weekend.  We were both in need of some R & R and the weather was some of the best we've had in months.  We spent most of the day out on our deck, watching the birds scarf down at the birdie buffet!  You can't really see them in this cell phone picture, but we had flocks of finches as well as our resident cardinals and blue jays.  A pair of bluebirds even stopped by to check out the bird house.  
We didn't exactly have a bright, sunny day, but the natural daylight was better for hand stitching than sitting in the house under the Ott light!  
I basted the head and wings for the first block of my 4 block eagle quilt.  After basting, I appliqued the head and most of one wing.  A little more stitching time this evening should result in two appliqued wings.

We also had a lovely Beach Music concert while we enjoyed our time on the deck.  Our oldest son turned us on to a music app (for smartphones, iPads and all computers) called Songza.  It has an amazing selection of music - for free!  We dialed in a "channel" called Under the Boardwalk and listened to hours of golden oldie R&B music.  All in all, a wonderfully relaxing day!

I'm linking up with Slow Sunday Stitching at Kathy's Quilts.  I'm so happy to have had a hand stitching day today!

 
 

Saturday, February 21, 2015

RSC-15: Perfectly Pink

Thank goodness there has been some perfectly pink scrappy fun this month!  It has been a great antidote to winter weather and job-related stress.  I managed to work in a little pink playtime on all my Rainbow Scrap Challenge projects this week.
I finished my scheduled number of pink 9 patch blocks...
...and admired them grouped together with last month's blue blocks.

I also completed two Scrap Jar Star blocks using reproduction fabrics.  After reading Barbara Brackman's Stars in a Time Warp blog entry for this week, I wish had added more double pink fabrics scraps to my stash before making these!

Some pink Maverick Stars were also added to the ongoing collection.  I hope to have enough of them for a quilt by the end of the year.

That wraps up my scrappy perfectly pink projects for the month.  If time allows this week, maybe I can find some other pink project that needs my attention!  In the meantime, I'm going to go enjoy all kinds of perfectly pink positivity at Angela's Soscrappy blog.

 

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Jane Austen and Eagles - All On A Mardi Gras Day

In my book it has been a good Mardi Gras.  The weather was cold (for New Orleans!) and overcast, but we were snug at home enjoying a Tuesday off from work and watching all the festivities on television.  As my friend called it - "Jammie Gras"!  Best of all, our oldest son came by and joined us for ceremonial cheeseburgers as our farewell to rich food before the abstinence of Lent.  (We often have a steak feast on Mardi Gras, but we did that on Thursday with our youngest son who flew in for the crazy weekend before Mardi Gras.)

I added the outer borders to the brown version of the Austen Family Album quilt.  The final border is a damask-type floral print.  I like the soft finish to this version.  As I worked on the the border, I wondered if Jane Austen would enjoy Mardi Gras.  I decided she would find the culture and traditions (and snobbery) as amusing as Regency England.  
Here's a close-up to give a better picture of the sashing and border.

Once I had the Austen Family Album borders tackled, I was ready for my main Mardi Gras project:  prepping block one of my Quilt Like An Eagle quilt project.
I will be out of town for some new job training for the next few days, necessitating some nights in a hotel.  I wanted to get the block all prepped for applique, so I'd have something to do after work.  I used the freezer paper and starch methods to get all his raw edges turned under and ready for stitching.  He's not pinned or basted at this point, but that will be easy to do tomorrow evening.  He has two different color talons because I couldn't decide which color I preferred.  I think I'll go with blue.  I'm pretty excited to finally have this project under way - I just hope I have the energy to work on him for the next couple of nights!

Mardi Gras will be over soon - the festivities traditionally end at midnight when the courts of Rex, King of Carnival (above) and Comus, another of the oldest Mardi Gras krewes, meet and salute each other.  In the French Quarter, police on horseback ride abreast down Bourbon Street, ceremoniously announcing "Mardi Gras is over!"  
Me, I'll be fast asleep and dreaming of quilts to come.
 



Monday, February 16, 2015

Paisley Parade: Finished!

Just in time for Presidents' Day - I finished hand-sewing the binding on my Paisley Parade quilt.
The weather has not been good for outdoor photography, so I settled for an indoor shot.  With the camera on my new phone.  Needless to say,  I have much to learn about using this new phone camera!
Here's a detail shot of some of the fabrics.  The quilt and the backing (a blue plaid) are both pretty busy, and it was impossible to get a good picture of the quilting.  It's a variation on a fleur de lis design, beautifully done by my local longarm quilter, Cindy Braiwick.

The quilt is from a Minick & Simpson pattern:  Paisley Parade.  It was offered as a kit when the pattern appeared in Quilt Sampler Magazine in 2008.  I finished the quilt top in 2013 and it has been sitting in the binding queue for a l o n g time!  The finished quilt measures 56" x 56", which will fit perfectly on the quilt display rack at the camp.

Although it is Presidents' Day everywhere in the U. S., in New Orleans it is also Lundi Gras, the day before Mardi Gras.  It's only been in the past decade or so that Lundi Gras has become firmly entrenched in the scheme of Mardi Gras.  We don't really do much to celebrate, except take the day off from work.  The weather forecast is calling for stormy weather later this evening, so it will be a good night to stay home and do some binge-watching on Netflix while I start stitching the binding on the next quilt in the queue!


Sunday, February 8, 2015

RSC-15: Positively Pink!

Pink is the color for February's Rainbow Scrap Challenge, which makes me a happy quilter indeed!  I'm a fan of the color pink in all its radiant glory, so a month of playing with pink should be good fabric therapy.
I managed to sew some 9 patch blocks together.
And I put together parts for more 9 patches after digging through the 2 1/2" strips and squares bin.

Once the 9 patch blocks are finished (I need eight of them), I'll focus on making some Scrap Jar Star blocks in reproduction fabrics.
I don't have a lot of pink reproduction scraps, but I did pull these from the Austen Family Album project.
These repro pinks were in the stash, so I guess I'll be cutting some new scraps to complete my SJS blocks.
And since I had to go to the Quilted Owl last week for fabric for my Austen Family Album quilts, I also managed to pick up a few pink fat quarters.

That has been the extent of my pink playtime so far this month.  There's lots more pink inspiration over at Angela's Soscrappy blog, so if you need more pink fabric therapy, go take a look!
 
 

 

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Superb Owl Stitching

It's time again for the uniquely American extravaganza related to a championship football game (American football).  I'm amused at the changes in how the game is referenced since the National Football League (NFL) - governing organization of American football - has copyrighted the name commonly applied to the game:  S*per*owl.  Every business with a reason to refer to the super game has come up with alternate terms, so they don't have to pay royalties to the NFL.  My favorite by far is "Superb Owl".  

In honor of the game, I offer up an owl of my own - a barn owl we met while Geocaching a few years ago on the Woodlands Trail

I won't be doing any hand stitching during the game this year as I need to rest both wrists.  I've been experiencing numbness and tingling in both hands at night, so I'm trying to avoid all wrist-intensive activities for awhile.
  
I have been addressing some Austen Family Album blocks.  I decided to separate the blocks from this BOW and make two quilts.  One quilt will feature the browns, greens and oranges.  The other will have mainly yellow, pink and turquoise blocks.  

I consulted with the proprietor of one of my local quilt shops - The Quilted Owl - and she immediately suggested a great fabric for the sashing.  So far I've only completed the between-the-block sashing, but I'm very happy with the Color Weave fabric from P & B Textiles.  

I've already decided to share this quilt with my sister, with whom I share a love of books and reading.  

And now it's time to join the family (all my boys are home!) and watch the Superb Owl!
 

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Austen Family Album: Wrapping Up The Story

I have been working on Barbara Brackman's Jane Austen-themed BOW since last April.  I had fallen behind in completing the weekly blocks (which concluded in early December), so one of my January goals was to finish the remaining blocks and at least get started on setting the blocks into a quilt top.

I chose to use a fabric line from several years ago called "Curio" by the Moda designers Basic Grey.  Most of the fabrics in the line were lovely, but there were some drawbacks to the choice.  There wasn't a lot of contrast in the fabrics, so I added several light neutral fabrics to bring some spark to the blocks.  The sampler blocks often called for a central print to be highlighted, and the fabric group only had one large floral print (in several colorways) that was suitable.  So, I wound up purchasing some traditional floral fabrics to mix in with the Curio fabrics.  Finally, the colors crossed a broad spectrum, including pink, yellow, green, brown and pumpkin.  I went ahead and used all the colors, but perhaps I should've narrowed the field a little.
The blocks are all complete, so now I'm deciding how to set them.  I have a large piece of a neutral Moda Grunge fabric that would work for sashing.  I also have a fabric in mind for an outer border, if I can still purchase enough of it.  That would be a fairly quick and painless proposition.

On the other hand, now that I have the blocks arranged on the wall, some of the darker blocks really stand out.  I'm wondering if I should split the blocks into two piles, one light and one dark.  I'd need to make two additional blocks to get a 4 x 5 setting for each separate quilt.  I could even set the blocks on point, which is what I originally wanted to do - but 36 blocks on point would make a huge quilt.  By making two quilts, I'd have one for myself and one for my English major sister!

Either way, I really enjoyed participating in this BOW.  Barbara Brackman provided a treasure trove of historical information about Jane Austen and her life and times.  I stretched out and played with fabric and color choices, which was a great experience for me.  I think I'm done with sampler quilts for awhile (this is my third one in as many years), but I'm glad I pushed myself to try new things.

I have an unexpected day off from work tomorrow, so I'm hoping to have some time to play with arranging these blocks some more.  I definitely DON'T want to put them away for awhile, since my goal for 2015 is to finish Works In Progress!

Saturday, January 24, 2015

RSC-15: Still Playing with 9 Patches and Flamingos

It's another blue Saturday for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge. 
I didn't have much scrappy playtime this week, but I did make an additional batch of 9 patch blocks -  meeting my goal of 8 blocks per month.
The blocks will eventually be arranged in a pattern like this, only the colors will be random.  I can't wait to see what next month's RSC color will be so I have more blocks to play with!
I never did find a happy group of fabrics to make a "modern" quilt using the bottom flamingo fabric in this stack.  That's OK, I have lots of flamingo fabrics (this is a small sample!), so maybe a different RSC monthly color will bring about the right fabrics and inspiration.  Or, maybe I should make a Postcard Quilt featuring several different flamingo fabrics.   I think I need to keep bringing out these fabrics and keep the inspiration muse on her toes!

There's plenty more colorful inspiration over at Angela's Soscrappy blog, where all the Rainbow Scrappers are linking  up today!


Saturday, January 17, 2015

RSC-15: Cleaning Up Drywall Dust Blues

I'm so happy I got to play with my scrappy blues earlier this week, because there was no sewing time today.  I spent the day cleaning drywall dust caused by some recent repairs/renovations instead of indulging in my favorite obsession pastime.  I still have a big plateful of cleaning to do tomorrow, but I think the worst is behind me.

This week I played with the blue strings and crumbs, finding enough goodies to create two Maverick Star blocks.  They are laid out on a piece of Moda Grunge fabric I am auditioning for another project.  I love Moda Grunge - it's such a neat fabric for adding color and texture!

I do have a blue project to focus on tonight - if I can stay awake long enough to do some stitching.  This is Minick & Simpson's Paisley Parade quilt.  It has been patiently waiting for the binding to be stitched down, so I'm anticipating a nice stitching session in my new recliner!

I haven't even looked at today's Scrappy Saturday link-up, but that's on the agenda too.