New Orleans House Project

Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Cassandra's Tale

 Apologies if you came here looking for a June mini quilt.  I attempted two different mini quilts this month and flamed out on both of them.  I think maybe the UFOs in my sewing room were making too much noise!

Instead, I can report I have finished assembling the flimsy for Cassandra's Circle - Barbara Brackman's appliqué BOM from 2020.

The BOM started in January with Washington's Plume as a center medallion block.

I managed to keep up with the monthly blocks using a combination of hand appliqué and invisible stitch machine appliqué.
Here are the completed blocks, trimmed and ready for assembly.  The blocks measure 18 inches, so the quilt was already pretty good-sized.

The quilt pattern came with instructions for an appliquéd border treatment.  I swear I purchased enough fabric to make the borders, but when it came time for cutting the fabric I realized I didn't have enough.

Decisions, decisions.  Do I hunt down more background fabric and proceed with the borders or add plain borders and call it a day?  Que background noise from the host of UFOs in the room...

Answer is:  add simple sashing and borders.  
Press carefully and start thinking about how to quilt.  
Now measuring 84 inches by 84 inches, it's going to have lots of quilty memories when it's finally complete!

Saturday, June 26, 2021

Purple Flashes of Brilliance

 I did a little playing with purple scraps this month for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge.  My initial thought when I looked through my purple scrap/yardage drawer was that it was time to make a mostly purple scrap quilt.  There are lots of chunks of purple fabric just waiting to get used up.  Unfortunately, the thought didn't evolve into a plan, so no purple scrap quilt has gotten started.  

On the other hand, I did manage to make two Sugar Loaf blocks using purple scrap chunks.

One lavender Sugar Loaf block.

And one darker purple block. 

The Flashes of Brilliance quilt calls for 25 blocks.  I've completed 12 so far, using the RSC monthly colors.  

The scraps from cutting the Sugar Loaf blocks are great for making Easy Breezy blocks.  

While I had purple on the brain, I remembered a quilt kit I had purchased from the Quilted Owl (alas, now closed) several years ago.  
Photo courtesy of the Quilted Owl.

The quilt pattern, Pyramid, is from the book Traditional Fat Quarter Quilts by Monique Dillard.
The fabrics are from a collection called New Orleans 1850 by Newcastle Fabrics.

I got all the quilt parts and pieces cut out this week.  So I guess instead of making a purple scrap quilt, I'll be making a purple-by-design quilt.  I love the color purple, so I'm a happy camper either way!

Friday, June 18, 2021

Summer's Here

Summer has descended on New Orleans in classic fashion:  daytime high temperatures in the mid-90s with corresponding high humidity.  Cooling afternoon thunderstorms that may or may not reach your neighborhood.  Tropical storms in the Gulf of Mexico.

Tomato season (see previous post) comes to an end when the weather gets too hot for the tomato plants to flourish.  Unfortunately for us, this year's tomato season has been a bust - and I haven't had a single tomato sandwich!

In less than 24 hours, Tomato Hornworms devoured the tomato plants we grow in pots here in town.  I had never heard of these guys until I spied them on the tomato plant remains and Googled them.  Not only did they eat the best tomatoes we had going, but they stripped the plants of all leaves, too.  Dear Hubby was so upset, he picked off every one of them and took great pleasure in squishing them underfoot!

A few days later, I found these guys eating my parsley - again, stripping the plants down to the nubs!  Turns out, these are Parsley Worms or Caterpillars.  They eventually turn into Swallowtail Butterflies, but I didn't want to see all my parsley destroyed just to meet their needs (there were about a half dozen of them).  Into a tin of soapy water they went.  I still have a little parsley left - hopefully it will grow back.

We also grow tomatoes at our camp in Mississippi.  Unfortunately, the mockingbirds made a fine feast of most of the tomatoes there!  

Even the Creole tomatoes from the Farmer's Market weren't all that good this year - too mushy and not much flavor.  Sigh.

Fortunately, there is always plenty of quilty stuff around the house to keep me happy.  A UFO had been calling out to me, so I pulled out the parts and pieces and proceeded to play.

I started making four inch Sawtooth Star blocks back in 2015 as part of the Rainbow Scrap Challenge.  After a year or so of making the blocks, I had a good-sized stash and a plan to use them in a medallion-style quilt with an appliqué center.  It took a few more years (!) to come up with a plan for the appliqué block, but I finally had my plan ready.

Fabric selection was fun...and messy!

Here's the final arrangement pinned in place.  The block is from the book Friendship's Garden, by Alma Allen and Cherie Ralston.

Now everything is all stitched up and I'm contemplating the next step.  I used machine appliqué for the center block.  The quilt measures 44 inches square at this point.  The quilt is telling me another border (maybe two?) is needed, but it's not saying what that border should be.  Back to playing with fabrics and scraps, I guess!