Eating and Sewing the Rainbow

Turkey Tracks: May 5, 2022

Eating and Sewing the Rainbow

Eating the rainbow at lunch today: roasted chicken and all kinds of veggies.

When I feel I’m getting full, I stop eating and put the leftovers into a bowl for my dinner meal. Sometime I just add more meat and veggies to the bowl and call it a night. Sometimes I add a tortilla heated over the flame on top of my stove—and add some butter when it is done. Sometimes I’ll also have a little dessert fruit. Mostly, I make an herbal tea, but sometimes I’ll have a coffee.

I am enjoying having my main meal in the middle of the day.

But speaking of rainbows, I just signed up for Tara Faughnan’s 10-month long Traverse Block of the Month—hosted by Sewtopia and starting in July. The project comes in two manufacturer choices (Windham Artisan Cottons or Kona cottons ) and two color ways. I chose the bright in the Windham Artisan Cottons. I love shot cottons. They have so much depth.

My experience with the ”Sugaridoo” quilt showed me it’s easy to make one row a month of a block that is fun.

And I fell in love with this colorful quilt.

”My Sunny” Quilt Is Finished

Turkey Tracks: January 28, 2022

“My Sunny” Quilt Is Finished

I’ve been busy.

Mostly solving problems that come up with a household. The new printer stopped working after a power outage—which usually doesn’t disrupt my technology permanently—along with my ipodtouch which I use to listen to books. That got sorted in about 20 minutes yesterday with a MAC person who came to the house.

And today a wildlife person is coming today to address the flying squirrels who have gained access to the ceiling on the first floor. AC’s right on that problem as his hearing is so much better than mine. I thought it was chipmunks. It is NOT. So I’ve been reading all about flying squirrels. Turns out they are VERY social—with each other and with humans. Some have them as pets even, but the text I read said that flying squirrels are also very demanding about spending time with their humans, which involves interacting with them.

Anyway, I did finish ”My Sunny,” which is the first project designed by Tara Faughnan for season 4 of Sewtopia’s The Color Collective. Mine is the ”classic” version, but I am inspired by all the different and very creative layouts I’ve seen others do now—and that is part of what I really love about this online class. Note that the straight line quilting—done on my domestic as doing this work on the longarm is still a learning curve for me—is not showing up well in these photos.

I really, really like the backing I used. It just seems so modern and so perfect.

Here’s where ”My Sunny” lives for the moment—and you can see the quilting rows better here.

And here:

As I’ve said before, I want to play with this block some more—and maybe I’ll set what I do in one of the more daring ideas I’ve seen. I definitely want to try some red and orange—and darker—backgrounds.

Maybe a wall hanging???

“Sunny” Top Is Finished

Turkey Tracks: December 11, 2021

“Sunny” Top is Finished

Here it is:

I’m really pleased with how it came out.

I chose to keep the reds and oranges to the sunburst/half circle and use the other fabrics for background. And I wanted to use LOTS of the two yellows—at least one version is in every row. I added in Kona Snow and, I think, the light grey is Lighthouse—but I won’t sweat to it. I wanted to keep this top light and airy, and I think it is.

I have since seen people using the red and orange as backgrounds too, and those blocks are awesome. I’d like to play now with the reds and oranges as backgrounds, and I have enough fabric left to do that. I’ll also play with making all the backgrounds more or less dark. Maybe. I never know…

Meanwhile, “Calm,” the light/dark grey BIG long cabin is on Innova. That work is going well. I do love this Innova.

It’s a rainy day—and all the snow is melted out. The grass is still GREEN.

AC doggie, of course, is bored out of his ever loving mind!!

I am happy to have this day to sew.

**A reminder that this Sunny block is designed by Tara Faughnan for Sewtopia’s The Color Collective AND is the first project for Season 4.

“Sunny” is Happening!

Turkey Tracks: December 2, 2021

“Sunny is Happening!”

The dark grey/light grey BIG long cabin top is done and will go on Innova next.

I bought a 108 wide backing and ordered a king batting, and I will bind with a medium grey solid.

”Calm” is a handsome quilt and has been claimed by my DIL Tami Enright, who also runs The Bee Cause, which has a Facebook page you could check out. This organization is dedicated to preserving bee habitats and to providing hives. Tami now has hives in all 50 states. Many of these hives are demonstration hives in schools and public places, so people can learn all about bees.

There was some drama while this top was still on the design wall: another chipmunk got into the house, the second one this year, and s/he appeared while I was watching nighttime tv and handsewing with AC doggie dead asleep next to me on the couch. When I shrieked, AC leapt up in a flash and trapped the chipmunk in the quilt room—where I shut the door to keep her/him in there. Unfortunately, when AC caught and shook the chipmunk, a spray of blood went across the bottom of the quilt.

What followed was a lot of soaking and blotting the spray with salt, salted water, and OxiClean spray. Finally, the blood all came out, but it took a long time. The blood, even so fresh, was very thick and very red—it was much denser than human blood. Later nurse and quilter Betsy Maislen told me that hydrogen peroxide would have taken the blood right out and would not have harmed the fabric. Good to know. Which is why I’m telling this story.

The fabrics on Innova’s roller bar are for the first project of this season’s online class hosted by Sewtopia, The Color Collective. Designer Tara Faughnan has given us a really fun and colorful “Sunny” block for this first project of the 4th season.

Here is where I am as of this morning:

I followed Tara Faughnan’s method of keeping the reds and oranges to the sunrise and adding neutrals to make the quilt lighter. I added Kona Snow and a Kona soft grey which I think maybe is Quicksilver. Sometimes it is hard to tell exactly from the fabric swatch cards I have.

BUT, I’ve seen some folks in the class using the red and oranges for backgrounds—and those blocks are awesome. I will make some of those when I am done—just because. Maybe a pillow? Maybe just blocks for the parts department bin. I never know when I start down a road like this one. Whatever, making them will be fun, and fun and play should always happen. And a quilt with all darker backgrounds would be so pretty too.

Of course this block can be used to make circles or other intriguing patterns—in that it is like “Tenderoni” the last quilt we made last year, designed by Latifah Saafir. Remember my version?

I pushed all the curved blocks together, whereas Latifah Saafir spread them out by including plain fabric blocks—which made for a beautiful, airy quilt. Maybe this could happen along with making blocks with a darker background for a small wall hanging or table runner of some sort.

Today is a rainy day! Yeah! That means sewing time for me, and all my household ”to do” tasks are done for the week—except for a quick trip to the grocery store today—mostly just to get AC out for a bit. Otherwise he ”dogs” me until we do something together.

It Was A Nice Week

Turkey Tracks: November 7, 2021

It Was A Nice Week

Today, Sunday, emerged as sunny and as cool as the rest of the past week. But I have not had a hard freeze yet.

I set the clocks back late last night, so when I awoke in the dark at my normal waking time, I turned over and went back to sleep until the clock and the sun said it was time to switch over the body clock and get out of bed. What was 6:30 am on Saturaday morning was now 5:30 am. And that meant ”no,” just ”no.” I woke again at 7:30, which was really 6:30, and so it goes for a few days. Or, longer.

The past week was busy, but easy. Monday meant an EARLY trip to Rockland to the Toyota Dealer for ”Girlie’s” first checkup and the installation of snow tires while there. Girlie is a Rav4 Prime plug-in hybrid acquired at the end of April. She plugs into the 110 volt outlet in the garage. I don’t think I’ve put even 3 full tanks of gas into her in the past 6 1/2 months. I use the gas feature when I get out on a highway, but otherwise she stays in her electric mode. And, no, my electrical bill has not risen.

I voted on Tuesday, and the referendum that interested me most was refused by the Maine voters: the building of a pipeline through Maine forest that benefitted Canada and Massachusetts and not Maine. Once shrinking wild forests are cut, they can’t really be replaced. Our Maine energy company is not American; it is foreign owned. Time for some changes there I think. And that possibility is simmering.

Friday saw AC doggie and me headed to Augusta for AC’s 3-month checkup for the Lyme infection he got. He was totally cleared, so the herbal tinctures worked. And his urine was also healthy. I’ll use up what is left of these tinctures as the ticks have been really bad this fall. His bloodwork will go to a bigger lab to make sure there aren’t any other issues. You may recall that AC reacted to his 1 year rabies booster so that he could not eat any meat protein without terrible allergic reactions that caused himto chew at himself constantly. The holistic vet in Augusta was able to stop the reactions—and we put AC on a fish diet. His favorite fish is the local farmed salmon (ugh!), but it goes on sale every 3 weeks, so I buy it then and freeze it. The next step in terms of diet may be trying some hamburger.

There was time for late afternoon quilting this week. Here’s the log cabin quilt now—it will be 8 rows square, or 96 inches—so I am getting right along with it. I will move around blocks to balance out the more dramatic fabrics before sewing blocks together.

The fabric palette on the longarm bars is from the first project from The Color Collective, season 4–a quilt designer Tara Faughnan is calling ”Sunny.” Resisting making more and more of these blocks is hard—so I’ve limited myself to making two a day and cutting out two more. LOL, I now have 4 cut out and ready to sew. But I need to get the log cabin off the design wall before setting up ”Sunny” there. And that is why my quilting is always endlessly engaging for me.

I’ve added the soft grey and Kona ”snow” to the mix in the fabric palette. I’m not exactly sure what the Kona grey is…Lighthouse maybe. Part of the joy of this project is seeing how different fabric combinations work out visually—and then how they work in the quilt when near other blocks or how they work in the overall quilt. The prepped blocks involve the darker navy and the soft lavender—in part—so then I will have used all 12 colors at least once.

The blocks can be combined in many, many ways of course. In that way, ”Sunny” is like the ”Tenderoni” block Latifah Saafir designed for last year’s guest designer project in the 7th month. Tara set her blocks like the red and pink blocks in the picture above—like rising ”suns” made with half circles. And her quilt is…Sunny…so lively and bright.

Here’s “My Tenderoni” quilt—which is very different from Latifah Saafir’s—and that is what is fun about The Color Collective. The creativity that emerges from people is just awesome.

I hope you have a wonderful week.

“Joyful” Is Finished

Turkey Tracks: November 1, 2021

“Joyful” Is Finished

She’s done!

And, oh my goodness, what a visual impact this one has.

To remind, this is Tara Faughnan’s wedding ring quilt pattern, and Tara Faughnan is also the designer for 7-month The Color Collective online class hosted by Amy Newbold at Sewtopia. Indeed, season 4 starts TODAY, and, LOL, my fabrics are washed and ironed for the first project, but the design wall is FULL of the log cabin quilt at the moment.

I quilted with a light grey thread by using the 40-inch Innova ruler equipment on the new Innova longarm. There is a basting line crease in this photo that is gone now as I express washed and dried Joyful to remove the basting lines.

Here are some close-ups. The quilting is not 100% perfect all over the quilt as this ruler was a learning curve. Now that the quilt is bound, washed, and dried, one would not notice the kinds of things I note about the quilting. It’s all good, and I’m happy with the results.

After Joyful was dried and while she was all warm from the dryer, I brought her up to my bedroom where she is going to live for this winter at least. I almost took a little nap to bask in the warmth, but thought better of it.

Joyful is a treasure. For sure.

When I checked the rain gauge yesterday, it showed FIVE INCHES of rain from the wild storm.

No wonder there was such flooding.

My Color Collective Season 3 Quilts

Turkey Tracks: September 6, 2021

My Color Collective Season 3 Quilts

I thought it would be good, for me at least, to review the work I did last year (season 3) in the online class (The Color Collective) hosted by Sewtopia (Amy Newbold) with designer Tara Faughnan (for six months of projects and fabric palettes) and with guest designer Latifah Saafir (for an extra seventh month).

The quilts are more or less in the order of the monthly projects. Tara gives us the pattern and the fabric (there are also helpful videos) and shows us her version of the project—then we have at it. Pretty much all of us make the project differently, and that outpouring of creativity is really fun to see and experience.

If you want to know more about each of my quilts, there are separate blog posts. You can search on the name of the quilt on the right sidebar.

My “Marrakesh”:

My “Pips”:

My “Splice,” and this one differs from Tara’s layout in that I laid out the strips to form that central diamond. I hand quilted this one with 12-weight cotton thread (Sulky).

My “Bokeh”:

Bokeh is a photographic term for the manipulation of the background to make it intentionally fuzzy.

My “Tenderoni”—which I called “Fractures”:

Latifah Saafir was the guest designer for the 7th CC month this year. She spread out her Tenderoni block by using plain squares of the fabric palette to make the Tenderoni blocks stand out—which of course made a lap-size quilt. I wanted to see how the Tenderoni shapes played together up close and I wanted a wall hanging. I hand quilted with 12-weight cotton thread (Sulky).

I made this wall hanging from the leftover “Offcut” quarter circle pieces and hung the two quilts opposite each other on the walls outside my quilt room. This one, too, is hand quilted with 12-weight cotton thread (Sulky).

I didn’t do “Hitch” (an improv project) or “Rex” (an appliqué project) this year. Both projects were very nice; they just landed here when I was really busy. There might come a day…. Both projects offer a lot of room for experimentation and play. These two projects are the only ones I have not made in the three years of the class—not a bad record for this class I think—for me or for Tara Faughnan.

I am so looking forward to Season 4, which starts November 1.

The Color Collective: Season 4

Turkey Tracks: September 1, 2021

The Color Collective: Season 4

It’s BACK for SEASON 4.

I signed up.

I couldn’t resist.

https://www.tarafaughnan.com/color-collective

The 7th and final month designer will be Annabel Wrigley. Take a look at her exciting work:

https://annabelwrigley.com

Two of the 12 fabrics in this year’s palette of solids will be shot cotton from Windham’s Artisan Cotton collection, which Tara helped design.

Fabrics for the first project will ship in October, and the first pattern will be released November 1.

I have to say that I have been so engaged with the projects of the last three years, and it has been such fun to see where Tara takes these projects over time—and that has often been to award-winning quilts.

I have learned so much! It’s like learning to read: once learned you can’t go back.

“Offcut Circles” Quilt

Turkey Tracks: August 29, 2021

“Offcut Circles” Quilt

I finished the scrappy wall hanging I have been making from the “offcut” quarter circles left over from the last project of this year’s The Color Collective season. The 7th and final month’s project this year was designed by Latifah Saafir. I loved her block (Tenderoni) and also loved her color palette.

I hung “Offcut Circles” at the entrance to my quilt room, opposite from its parent, the Tenderoni block wall hanging I’m called “Fractures.”

The small quarter circles in “Offcut Circles” comes from the way the small circles are cut and discarded from the Tenderoni block—replaced by a larger quarter circle that makes the math in the Tenderoni block work.

For both quilts, I quilted a grid with Sulky 12-weight cotton thread in many different colors related to the palette. You can buy this thread on small spools that cost under $2 a spool. They have plenty of thread on the spool for most projects where one wants lots of different colors. I get them from Red Rock Threads and order online.

I used the rusty dark brick color for the binding. The backing is just made from whatever I had in my stash that would fit. This time a warm paisley.

I made the circles using the template method Tara Faughnan taught us in our very first The Color Collective project in Season 1 and appliquéd them to the backing square. You know, in thinking about what I did, I don’t think I trimmed out the back of the background block after sewing down the circles. ???? I must have been resisting creating MORE CIRCLES that I would find hard to throw away.

Here’s the very first circle quilt from the very first project in season 1 of The Color Collective. I combined blocks from the first and second months.

Here’s a link to the original post about XOXO.

Here’s a link to the quilts I made from the first season of The Color Collective:

https://louisaenright.com/?s=Season+1+quilts+from+the+color+collective

Funky Wedding Ring Quilt Top

Turkey Tracks: August 2, 2021

Funky Wedding Ring Quilt Top

What a fun scrappy quilt!

It is so lively and so full of good energy. And I have not named it yet.

This is just a quick and dirty picture—and the quilt is hanging over another quilt in progress, so things look lumpy.

A reminder that this block comes from Freddy Moran and Gwen Marston and is in their book FREDDY AND GWEN COLLABORATE AGAIN: FRIENDS. I mixed printed and solid scraps in the blocks and am happy with how that evolved.

And here is what is going on BEHIND this quilt:

This quilt is designer Tara Faughnan’s “Wedding Ring” quilt.

It is so fun to make!

I have a busy day but can’t wait to spend some time today making more of the scrappy rings.