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“Happy Quilt”

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Turkey Tracks: January 16, 2021

“Happy Quilt”

I’ve been busy this week: cataract surgery on my left eye happened on Tuesday and a week of healing, eye drops, and check-ins with family and friends followed. The left eye was really bad with seriously impaired vision that was starting to affect both eyes. It is now AWESOME! I have light and clarity back now, and I am delirious about my renewed vision. The right eye will be done Feb. 2nd. It all feels like a miracle.

Plus, I was totally able to do the procedure without being put to sleep—which would have meant a risk for me with my mast cell disorder/histamine reactions and would have been maybe pushing the envelope too far alongside the drugs they used to prep the eye. The whole process was totally interesting, and afterwards, they only had to check my blood pressure a few times, and I could just go home. I could tell right away that my eye was seeing things it had not seen in some time—and that has gotten better and better every day.

BUT, I put the binding on this baby quilt for a local baby born on the 11th before I left for the cataract procedure, and during this week, I was able to sew down the binding. I called it “Happy Quilt,” and it is made from a collection of Riley Blake fabrics I had in my stash that really needed to be used.

I got into this project via friend Betsy Maislen who was also making baby quilts. She used the Bow-Tie block, and when I saw her growing quilt top, I got hooked—especially as I wanted to do something for this local baby. Here’s Betsy’s quilt top, so you can see what drew me into this project:

Betsy used a pink binding—and the quilt is back from the longarm quilter. She is now making another baby quilt from Bonnie Hunter’s “Winter Blues” pattern, which we both have purchased now.

Here’s “Happy Quilt.”

And now I am back to hand quilting my “stripes” solid scrappy quilt and working on the January project for The Color Collective.

Today is rainy and way too warm—all the snow is melting. But I am looking forward to a rainy day of sewing.

Written by louisaenright

January 16, 2021 at 10:19 am

Project 3 of The Color Collective Arrives Tomorrow

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Turkey Tracks: December 31, 2020

Project 3 of The Color Collective Arrives Tomorrow

The fabrics are here and have been washed, but not yet ironed.

The dark one is a very rich navy dark blue.

Meanwhile, “Pips” is almost done. I have one more row. So pics of the top will follow soon.

And now we are living through the last day of 2020. Tomorrow we will be celebrating the start of a whole new year.

Written by louisaenright

December 31, 2020 at 9:08 am

A Quilter’s Table

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Turkey Tracks: December 28, 2020

A Quilter’s Table “Bee Sewcial” Quilts

I have a treat for you.

Debbie of A Quilter’s Table posted pictures in her blog of her #BeeSewcial quilts over the past years, and they are fun to see.

This group (#BeeSewcial, which you can see on Instagram) gives each other “prompts” that solicit improv blocks that will be made into an improv quilt. They work in solids only.

Our local modern quilt guild has been doing this “prompt” method started by the #beesewcial quilters as a challenge for those in the group interested for the past two years. We do not limit to solids. I occasionally put blocks I have made for each person’s blog on this blog.

Even if you are not a quilter, it is fun to see Debbie’s wonderful improv quilts. If you are a quilter, you might want to follow her blog.

https://aquilterstable.blogspot.com/2020/12/puzzling.html?showComment=1608726149138#c8519443474142047893

Written by louisaenright

December 28, 2020 at 9:13 am

“Marrakesh” Quilt Done

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Turkey Tracks: December 26, 2020

“Marrakesh” Quilt Done

Marrakesh is such a bright, happy quilt.

It is the first project for Sewtopia’s and Tara Faughnan’s online class The Color Collective in season 3. This project was all about color combinations and how color can change the look of a block. I also learned some new techniques—one of which was a new way (for me) for making flying geese

The block on the middle left is a happy accident. I cut the wrong side of a unit which emphasized the navy blue rather than the orange. I left it as I liked it.

I matchstick quilted on my domestic with a pale blue-grey thread, but every now and then I ran in a gold, or a pale orange, or a coral. You don’t really notice them overall, but they do add some interest and complexity I think—though it makes for a lot of re-treading of the machine.

The backing is “Newsprint” by Carrie Bloomston, and I had enough of the pale orange to make bias binding.

I did put a hanging sleeve on this quilt, but I don’t have a hanging place right now. Well, there is one place, but I’m waiting to see what other projects we do in The Color Collective this year.

Written by louisaenright

December 26, 2020 at 12:40 pm

A Chipmunk Mystery

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Turkey Tracks: December 19, 2020

A Chipmunk Mystery

AC doggie is…fast!

AC and I were on the downstairs couch last night—I had a quilt over my lap, and he was on my lap.  SUDDENLY he leaped from my lap like something shot out of a cannon, ran around the back of the couch between all the legs of the sewing table I’ve set up to do a quilting job while I watch tv—an area he has avoided—and there was all sorts of frantic scuffling on the wooden floor beyond.  

By now I was trying to get out from under the quilt to see what on earth…  

In about 3 more seconds as I was finally on my feet, he appeared on the rug in front of me shaking a dying chipmunk.  What???  The whole event took less than 10 seconds.  My heavens that dog can move fast.  


Then I had to find something with which to pick it up and throw it out into the snow—which meant AC who was jumping around me had to follow.  And for the rest of the night, he wanted to go outside about every 30 minutes in the bitter cold to check on it. And I’m sure that happened first thing this morning.  


But how did it get in?  And when?  With this cold, the chipmunks would be hibernating. I am suspicious of the closet at the downstairs door.  AC has been telling me that chipmunks are under the porch just outside there.  Have they found a way inside? Could they get into the tv room by going under the closet door? 


It’s a mystery.    

PS: I wasn’t sure at first it WAS a chipmunk as the animal’s coat was very dark. But I googled it, and chipmunks lose their bright orange color in the winter in favor of a dark brown and black coat. Who knew as I never see them from the onslaught of cold weather until spring when they emerge to herald that spring is on the way.

Today will involve a thorough inspection of the suspect closet, which is full of coats, scarves, mittens, hats, and shoes.

Written by louisaenright

December 19, 2020 at 9:36 am

Yummy Lunch

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Turkey Tracks: December 18, 2020

Yummy Lunch

I’m the queen of cream—local, raw heavy cream, that is.

I’m off coffee right now, so I’ve been looking for other ways to use my weekly heavy cream.

Look at this yummy, warm lunch.

I sautéed some veggies and herbs in duck fat: zucchini, onion, garlic, carrots, cauliflower until they began to color up. Then I added in some cubed roasted chicken from breasts I cooked the day before—just turned the meat in the veggies until it heated a bit. Add sea salt at some point.

Then the magic!

I poured cream over the whole mixture and stirred it until it heated and got bubbly. At that point it all needs to leave the frying pan and got into a dish that will hold the cream gravy.

Delicious!

I’ll be doing this method again with leftover meats.

Written by louisaenright

December 18, 2020 at 9:37 am

“A Gaggle of Geese” Quilt

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Turkey Tracks: December 17, 2020

“A Gaggle of Geese” Quilt

It’s done!

It’s been such a fun project AND is a real stash buster.

I took a chance and used black and white striped binding cut on the bias, and I think that worked really well. The backing is Carrie Bloomston’s 108 inches wide “Newsprint.” Combining “Newsprint” with the black and white bias-cut binding and fairly colorful fabrics is something I like a lot.

I quilted with a medium grey thread that disappeared into the backing fabric and didn’t make any bold statements on the front of the quilt. And I used the Check and Chase Pantograph from Lorien Quilting which added some great texture.

The block is 3 by 6. And now I’m wondering about working with an even larger block. That will probably happen along the quilty road. In any case, this quilt is a delight—big enough to cover a bed well and bright with interesting fabrics.

Written by louisaenright

December 17, 2020 at 11:07 am

Ongoing Quilty Projects, December 2020

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Turkey Tracks: December 10, 2020

Ongoing Quilty Projects, December 2020

As usual, I have multiple quilty and garment sewing projects going on. I move from one to the other as my momentary interest prompts. Joy and engagement prompts me, not stress to finish anything.

The as yet unnamed flying geese quilt is getting its binding sewn down at night. I’ve got a few more nights on this one. But I have to say, I’m really pleased with this quilt, and it was a huge stash buster. The striped binding was a risk, but I think that it is working really well. It is just fun.

Marrakesh, designed by Tara Faughnan for The Color Collective online class I’m taking, is ready to quilt. I started the first line of matchstick quilting and realized there was a HUGE fold in the batting, starting about 1/4 of the way down. How on earth…??? I put smaller quilts I’m going to quilt on my domestic on the longarm to layer and pin. I can’t imagine how I missed a fold in the batting along the way. The quilt WAS pinned more intensely, but I had to put it back on the longarm and take most of the pins out and then repin it. And, yes, the fold was bad and thick, so there was no choice. Anyway, I’ll probably spend some time with Marrakesh later today. I can watch tv from this spot I’ve set up. I really enjoyed Selena The Series on Netflix, by the way. I had no idea about this story.

I’ve got the rows sewn together for this very interesting quilt inspired by one Tara Faughnan made. She has classes on color in which she uses her quilt like this one as an example. I need one more row at the bottom—which should be lighter. It will finish at 50 wide by 60. Easy Peasy. I’ve taken a ton of pictures along the way while trying to check and recheck how the colors are working together. This quilt is made mostly from my solid scraps, not my larger pieces of solid fabrics. I think it will need a dark binding to hold it all together…

”Trees” is now the only leader/ender quilt, and it is growing slowly, which is ok. It is based on a block designed by Amanda Jean Nyberg of Crazy Mom Quilts. I think it will finish at 8 by 9 rows. And it, too, is meant to knock back my solid scraps, which it is doing.

The two Sugaridoo quilts are all ready to go on the longarm—as soon as I figure out how to quilt them. And the second project from The Color Collective is all ready go—my fabrics are washed and I’ll iron them soon. This project is all about curves.

Then, there are two garments that are all cut out and ready to sew, but neither is something I can wear right now, so they are still on pause.

I’m busy and engaged, despite being alone and staying away from people. And I’m grateful for my sewing projects. They can pass a lot of time, for sure.

Written by louisaenright

December 10, 2020 at 8:42 am

Maine Is So Pretty

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Turkey Tracks: December 9, 2020

Maine Is So Pretty

I haven’t been out of Camden in over a month now.

So, Monday I undertook an errand in Damariscotta, which is about 45 minutes south of Camden.

We had been blessed with our first real snow and some, finally, cold weather. (It has been very warm this November.) It was good to be out on the highway and seeing how pretty Maine is, period, but with a new fall of snow, it is just beautiful.

Marsha Smith sent me these pictures taken by her son and grandson as they repaired a hiking shelter up on Ragged mountain. I’ve been meaning to put these pics on the blog, so today is the day.

That’s the bay out in the distance.

Maine in winter just has the most gorgeous colors due to the winter light. In these pics we get pastels. But in winter we also get fiery sunsets and dawns. And long lavender shadows on the snow when the sun is so low in the sky as it is now. And cobalt blue light at dusk that turns the world blue. And marmalade orange on tree trunks when the sun rises. I could go on. I could move to the starry cold nights where the full moon is so big you feel like you can reach up and touch it. But I will leave you with my joy about winter.

Solstice is coming, and them we start to climb uphill to longer and warmer days and all the lush green growth of summer.

I love our seasons, and I love being close to them, so I see most of the small, beautiful daily changes.

Written by louisaenright

December 9, 2020 at 2:07 pm

“Funky Rail” Quilt

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Turkey Tracks: December 4, 2020

“Funky Rail” Quilt

My “Funky Rail” quilt is all done. This pattern is from Sajata Shah’s CULTURAL FUSION QUILTS book, which I love. I will be doing more patterns from this book and will likely make this one again in different fabrics

Sajata Shah’s method for forming these blocks is different and amazing. I could never visualize a concept like this one on my own. The block is so lively and fun.

I pieced this backing from leftovers from the front and from my stash.

The line of rectangles is made from the trimming off-cuts from the block pieces. I couldn’t just thrown them away.

I quilted with an antique gold thread, which worked well I think. And the pantograph is “Check and Chase” from Lorien quilting.

I’m using this same pantograph for my wild geese quilt, which is now on the longarm.

More rain is coming in, so I’ll probably get this quilt longarm quilted soon now.

Written by louisaenright

December 4, 2020 at 11:29 am