Monday, April 23, 2018

Make-A-List Monday - Back to the Real World!

Hi, all!

Well, Monday has rolled around again, and unfortunately, I'm not at the beach any more - although I will say that coming home to our yard looking like this...


....was pretty amazing!  All the trees leafed out while we were gone, and the grass popped up - it looks like Ireland out there!  So maybe spring has final arrived - here's hoping!

Since I was on vacation last week, I didn't have a to-do list.  And this week I'm feeling at loose ends because I don't have anything pressing, so my list is very important to keep me on track.  Here's what's on it so far...

1.  Make a quilt back for the Have Faith quilt.


2.  Quilt the Have Faith quilt.

3.  Quilt the first (of many) teacher quilts. (More about this below.)

4.  Start the prototype for the 12 Days of Christmas in July (12DCIJ) quilt-along quilt.


Pretty fabrics!  Now to get them cut out...

5.  Keep working on the reclamation and reconstruction of my friend's turtle quilt.


There's 20 of these adorable blocks, but unfortunately this is one of the better ones - many are frayed, and the blocks are quite a variety of not-square shapes.  But I have a plan and my friend trusts me, so this quilt will get a new lease on life soon!

6.  Keep working on setting up this year's 12 Days of Christmas in July blog hop!  (If you are interested in participating, send me an email at salliesue57 (at) gmail (dot) com.)

7.  Keep up with any quilt ministry needs that come up.

About the teacher quilts - we are hoping to make enough quilts for all the teachers at our local elementary school, to be gifted to them at the teacher appreciation dinner our church holds during the Christmas season.  We have about six months to make 41 quilts, in addition to all our regular ministry quilts.  It's do-able, but I'll probably try to quilt one or two of these every week or so.  

So I definitely think I'll be staying out of trouble this week!  And now the question is - - - what are YOU working on this week?

Hugs!

Sarah


Sunday, April 22, 2018

Scraps make Great Donation Quilts!


Hi, all!

This week our guest blogger is Cynthia Brunz, who blogs at Quilting Is More Fun Than Housework - and boy, does she have that right!  She has some great tips for ways to make charity quilts using what you have on hand.  Many of us want to make charity quilts, but don't have the resources to spend a lot of money. Well, she has the perfect answer!  So without further talking on my part, here's Cynthia!

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I try to make a handful of quilts every year to donate to various causes like Sarah's Hands2Help quilt drive or locally to a couple of kids' organizations.  This year I am hoping to donate at least six.  To ensure I am always working toward my goal, I look for ways to get them done throughout the year.  And because quilts can get expensive to make, I like to keep the cost of these quilts down. 

My answer is to use those scraps!



One of my secrets is to participate in the Rainbow Scrap Challenge over at SoScrappy.  You pick your block design and how many you want to make each month.  On the first day of the month, Angela announces the color and those are the scraps you sew your blocks in.  By the end of the year, you have a scrappy rainbow quilt. 

Last year I made string blocks all year and ended up making this fun quilt.



And if you don't want to settle on one block, usually there is a Rainbow Scrap Challenge sampler quilt along.  This year Angela is teaming up with Mari over at Acedmic Quilter.  Here are my blocks for the first three months.  The instructions for each block are always easy to follow.

Participating in these two events usually yields me at least 3 rainbow quilt tops each year.  And they all come from the scrap bin!




I also try to make all of my donation quilts from 100% scraps.  Not having to go out and buy fabrics for the background or borders sure makes my pocketbook happier.  I have a whole Scrap-A-Palooza gallery of quilts over at my blog (Quilting is more fun than Housework) that has lots of ideas for turning scraps into quilts.  There are ideas for just about every size and shape of scraps.  And almost all of the designs are made from 100% scraps.




Another way I keep the costs down on my donation quilts is I always keep a stock of backings I was able to get at a great price.  I usually buy in 4 yard cuts and try to have a variety of colors.  In fact, I have been known to start with a backing piece and pull scraps to match for the front of the quilts.  This little trick ensures you have a backing you know works!



I have finished up my Hands2Help quilt and will be sending it off soon to Quilty Hugs.  I decided to go with some happy pinks and yellow to hopefully brighten a challenging day for someone receiving chemo.  It was made with large scraps, some leftover strings and a whole lot of good thoughts!

So I hope some of these ideas inspire you to turn your scraps into some donation quilts.  It really does warm your heart to know you will be bringing comfort to someone who could use a quilty hug.

And finally a big thanks to Sarah for organizing this annual Hands2Help event!

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Wow!  Thank you so much, Cynthia!  There's a lot of inspiration there - I especially love those log cabin circles!  And it's amazing how far scraps will go - I've made a bunch of scrap quilts this year, and haven't made a dent in my stash of scraps - it just takes a little bit of creativity and thinking outside the box.  I'm planning to check out Cynthia's Scrap-A-Palooza gallery of quilts, too - I bet there are some good ideas hiding over there!

Keep working on those quilts - there are lots of people who need a good quilt-y hug out there, just waiting for it!

Hugs!

Sarah

PS - I'm looking for bloggers who want to participate in this year's 12 Days of Christmas in July blog hop - if you've got a great Christmas idea you've been itching to share, drop me a line (salliesue57 at gmail dot com) and let's get together!

Friday, April 20, 2018

Can I Get A Whoop Whoop? Meet Blu the Bear...

Hi, all!

As I write this, I am gazing out over the beautiful Gulf of Mexico, looking at the dolphins swim by.  The sun is shining, it's 75 degrees, and there's a soft wind blowing.  I may stay here forever, because it's definitely whoop-whoop worthy!!  Unfortunately, there's only a couple more days before I have to go back to the real world - but for now, a girl can dream!  I'm obviously ready to whoop it up - are you?  Let's get started!

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Since our week started out cool, I was able to get in some sewing time earlier this week.  You've probably seen this quilt already, but I'm happy to say now that it is finished!


I've decided to name this little guy Blu the Bear.  He's so absolutely adorable - I was a little perplexed with what I would do with him when he arrived in my Stash Builder Box a few months ago, but I think he's found the perfect home!


If you'll recall, this month my Scrap Attack goal was to use up some of the bonus HSTs I had stuffed into a plastic shoebox.  Well, this didn't make a big dent, but it did use up almost all of the bonus HSTs I had left over from Lilli's dolphin quilt that I made before Christmas.


I did straight line quilting in the white diagonal lines, extending it through the center square for interest and to stabilize the center.  It still seemed a little bit "unattached", so I also stitched around Blu.  That should make him stand out a little more once this is washed.  I'm really happy that the diagonal quilting framed him without cutting into his lines - a happy accident!


The back is really cute, too - two more pieces that came with Blu.  I added a strip of the black checkerboard to make the paw print fabric wide enough, and also used that black checkerboard for binding.  


Blu will be heading to the Little Lambs Foundation for Kids as part of this year's Hands2Help Charity Quilt Challenge.  I'm hoping some little boy or girl will find him to be a good friend when they need one!  

So - - - can I get a whoop whoop?

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And now it's your turn!

What's got you whooping it up this week?


What's making you do a little happy dance?

Share!  We want to dance right along with you - 

And it's always more fun to dance with friends!

The party will stay open until Sunday midnight.

Hope to see you there!

Hugs!

Sarah

PS - I'm looking for bloggers who want to participate in this year's 12 Days of Christmas in July blog hop - if you've got a great Christmas idea you've been itching to share, drop me a line (salliesue57 at gmail dot com) and let's get together!