New Orleans House Project

Sunday, June 28, 2020

June Mini: A Puzzle Experiment

I've always wanted to try my hand at piecing a Rocky Mountain Puzzle block.  

Still thinking about Christmas gifts, I thought maybe I could make my Denver-residing son something (a pillow?) using the RMP block.

Since the July 4th holiday was fast approaching, I decided to dig into the red, white, and blue fabric stash for inspiration.  Using the tutorial linked above, I tried the eight inch size puzzle blocks.

It turns out, the "puzzle" is using partial seams to create the border around the center block.  It wasn't difficult to do, but design-wise, it didn't really make sense to me.  Unless one uses different fabrics for that border, the fancy piecing doesn't show up.  For future reference, I'd just construct the block using regular border-style piecing.

I made two additional blocks, then added sashing and cornerstones so the blocks wouldn't run together.  I used invisible thread to quilt around the squares and triangles in the blocks, and a decorative machine stitch in blue thread to quilt the sashing.  
The finished mini measures about 18 inches square - a good size to fit an 18 inch pillow form.  šŸ˜€

The backing fabric was also from my red, white, and blue fabric stash.

Since this was an experiment, it will stay with me and I'll do another version for Dear Son.  I have a fun stack of indigo-style blues and browns that might make some great Rocky Mountain Puzzle blocks.

I did a little July 4th decorating on the bureau in my front entry hall!








Wednesday, June 24, 2020

Cassandra's Circle BOM Block Five

The sixth Cassandra's Circle block was posted this morning at Barbara Brackman's Civil War Quilts blog.  Thank goodness I finished the June block just in time!

Russian Sunflowers - Cassandra's Circle block five.

My plan for this BOM was to only use fabrics from my chosen fabric collection and not add additional fabrics if at all possible.  It has been an interesting challenge!

Friday, June 19, 2020

Meandering Through June

Just like the Mississippi River, I feel like I'm meandering through the month of June.  
I've worked on this and that, but no big sparks of creativity (or energy) seem to be flowing.  I guess I'll just keep meandering and see what turns up - something always does!

One recent project was mastering the art of the Lone Star block.  After inserting the background pieces - which required using Words of Power - I decided maybe I don't want to make Lone Star themed gifts for Christmas this year.  I'd still like to make a large Lone Star quilt for myself, but the thought of lots of Little Lone Stars now gives me a headache!

I'm still planning to turn this star into a pillow.  I did some basic straight-line quilting, but I want to make the pillow with a zipper, which requires a trip to the fabric store.


This small quilt (30" x 30") was just a bag of four patches a few weeks ago.  The fabrics were left over from Barbara Brackman's Grandmother's Choice BOM from 2012.  Once I had the double four-patches pieced up, I found a nice hunk of Brannock & Patek (circa 1997) fabric in my stash to use for the outer border.

For quilting, I used straight lines through the four patches, and pumpkin seeds in the border.  Since I suck at free-motion quilting, I did the pumpkin seeds using the walking foot feature on my sewing machine - feed dogs engaged.  It was fun figuring out the best way to make the design without having to start and stop the line(s) of stitching.

The backing also came from my stash - an antique map print.  You can see the quilting a little better from the back.

And every quilt deserves a label - even the leftovers!
BTW, I got brave and used my laser printer to print the label.  First, I ironed the label fabric to an 8.5 x 11 inch sheet of freezer paper.  I wrote out the label using my word processing program, then played with different fonts until I found one I liked.  The font is called "She Persisted" - which I thought was perfect.  After printing the label in the printer, I also heat-set the design using my iron.  This has been through the wash; it may have faded a tiny bit, but not enough to matter.


Meanwhile, at our camp, I have a new pressing/storage table!  Dear Hubby built the shelf unit, then added a removable, expanded top.  I covered the top with padding and cotton canvas.  I love it!

I put the new pressing table to good use last weekend making more "Lego" blocks.  I only need a few more blocks and I can start assembling the quilt.


In between quilting projects, I've been pickling goodies from our garden.  The garden is small, but prolific this year!  I can't keep up with fixing cukes in fresh dishes, so I made a batch of refrigerator pickles this week.  This is two 4-cup pyrex storage containers full of pickles (graced with a few pieces of red jalapeƱo).  I've also pickled more banana and jalapeƱo peppers than I can count.  


I'm going to meander on to this project next.  I think some creative energy might be starting to flow!