Oh so colorful

Do Not Pin

Do Not Pin

Photo is a bit washed out from the flash but as you can see I have a lot of colorful blocks on my desigin wall.   About half were swap blocks and the rest ones I made from my batik stash.   I wanted to see what it would look like if  I used the red/orange blocks as sort of a divider with the blues & greens below and other colors above.  So stuck them up on the design wall that way since I needed to remove them from my living room floor. At least there are out of the way and while on the wall I can contemplate them when I’m in the sewing room, move things around, decide what size I wan to make the project  and how I want to finish it off – alternate blocks, sashing, straight set, etc. I need to go digging through the block storage tubs — seems to me there are other sets of batik on Kona black  blocks in there and maybe I can incorporate them all together in a project. Now the important question of the day — does a person really need something OTHER than pumpkin pie and coolwhip for dinner??  Yep I made pie but haven’t given dinner a thought.  But I think I did take some split pea soup out of the freezer and stuck it in the fridge to thaw so that might just be the thing to have.

Batik Life Saver Quilt with Candy Necklace Border

lsbsDONOTPIN   The finishing instructions for the Batik Life Saver block swap have now been added per my prior post about the swap earlier today.   So when your swap blocks arrive, you’ll be all set to finish it off if you wish to do so to match this image.   I’m still debating how I want to set mine together but I guess first I should decide how large a quilt I actually want to make out of them.  I’m thinking just a nice large lap size which , since I’m tall, is probably at least twin size.  I’ll have to lay out my swap blocks, along with the others I made and kept for myself, to see how many I have.

Batik Lifesavers Swap – Update

The blocks are headed back out in the mail today!  So look for them to be arriving in a few days.  I’ve been super busy and haven’t written up the instructions for the quilt setting I had originally shown with the swap.  I’ll do that this weekend and post a copy of it in the files on TQP for those members so those of you who swapped can find it if you want to use it when your blocks arrive and also will post it on my blog for the nonTQP swappers to find, so check for an update on the “Batik Swap Page” which you’ll find in the list on the right side in the list of “free quilt patterns”  later this weekend.

There will be those I’m sure who will be a bit disappointed — I had to return portions of some swap packages unswapped — if you get some of your blocks returned unswapped it’s because they didn’t follow the swap rules.  The size was not correct in most instances.  There were quite a few that measured more like 8.5 x 8.25 — not square.  Or three corners would hit the mark but the fourth was short (looked like maybe the seam allowances when adding the corner pieces on that side were too deep) so one corner would be 8.25 so the block looked skewed.  And one swapper’s set didn’t follow the pressing rules so they had to be returned unswapped.

But there were a lot of lovely batiks and a really good variety of them – only a couple where more than one swapper had the same batiks as others and I “think” I managed not to give you one back from someone else if you had used the same batik in your set. But don’t hold me to that since after 3 hours of measuring and swapping my brain was getting addled.

Batik swap update

Blocks did not get in the mail this week.  It was too dang cold and snowy and I was not trudging to the post office when it was 20 below. 🙂  But a heat wave is arriving — at least 30 degrees above zero this coming week — whoopee!!  Yes I know it’s all relative – there are those of you shivering when I say it’s going to be 30 and I’m thinking how warm it will be — after all, that’s a 50 degree difference compared to earlier this week!  LOL  So I’ll get the packages back out to you before the end of the upcoming week.

More swap blocks

   Before lunch I finished off these blocks so I’ve sewn up all the life saver batik  pieces I had cut out and I think I’m done making swap blocks.

So my next plan of attack is to go pull them all off the design wall  and measure them all to see which ones go to the swap pile and which ones I keep for me. (well really my next plan of attack is to go make some cookies but after that or during that I’ll be sorting blocks). 😉

Beverley and Janet had commented on the prior blog post regarding the third quilt layout and possibly setting that “gold sashing” block both horizontal and vertical.  Hey I can’t show you all my fun projects!  LOL  I do have one layout where I did color it in with that section going in both directions for a different project (and yes it looks good) but it would not work with the swap blocks.   I forgot that I had recolored some of the corners of the blocks with a different project in mind in that third layout but in the swap blocks, those corners are actually black.

  That third layout has the blocks set on point (actually both the last two layouts are on point designs and there is a second block design used with the life saver blocks so there’s really no sashing). So with the blocks on point, if you tried to make it with the swap blocks (and put the black corner triangles back in the right spots like the swap blocks have)  it would actually look like this – with two separate diamonds and black triangles in the middle.

If you altered the alternate block to get the gold pieces vertically too, it would look like the next image.     Either one would have great open spaces for quilting.    A little more alternating of the alternate block and I get the last image — see this could go on forever (that’s why EQ is so addictive – just a little change here or there and a whole new idea) so I’d better get off the computer so I can get something else done. 🙂

  They all remind me of bracelets or strings of jewels.

Life Saver Block Swap update

I updated the LSBS page with the packages received as of last night (mail doesn’t arrive until later  in the day on Saturdays).  Five packages received so far. 

Remember,  if you haven’t already – mail that swap package today! 🙂

I was playing a bit more in EQ with the swap block design.  The first image is the original one I designed for these swap blocks and if you completed this swap, you will be receiving the information on how to complete this quilt design with your swap blocks.

But I haven’t decided if that’s how I’ll actually finish putting together my own swap blocks.  Here’s a couple more ideas I’ve been playing with that I also like.  Then again, there’s probably enough batik fabrics aroud here that I could probably make all three!

Attention Batik Life Saver Block Swappers……….

Have you mailed your blocks? You still have time. Last date to mail is February 2 –  January has flown by and February 2 is this coming Saturday!!  be sure to get them in the mail by then.  Remember as I’ve said before do NOT send them with delivery confirmation — I work – there’s no one to sign for them so they won’t get delivered.

Also, I posted a while ago this blog post please reread it BEFORE you mail in your blocks to make sure you followed ALL the swap rules.

Just the highlights of that blog post are posted below — these are the most common mistakes  swappers make that get their blocks returned to them.  I hate to return them and no swapper wants them back unswapped, but I can’t stress enough that you need to follow ALL the swap rules whether you agree with them or not.  If your blocks don’t meet those requirements, please do not send them.

  • You used only the required fabrics – Kona black and batiks (no hand dyed) per swap rules.
  • Your seam allowances are all PRESSED OPEN per swap rules
  • Your blocks measure 8.5″ x 8.5″ (not 8.0″ x 8.0″ or 8.0″ x 8.25″). If your blocks are not the correct size they cannot be swapped. Measure each one of your blocks before sending them.
  • Threads are trimmed
  • Mail your swap packages to me no earlier than January 25 and no later than February 2. If you do not mail on or before Feb 2 I will not get your package in time to swap it.

Swap packages are already starting to come in so I’ve gathered a large box to put them all in until everything is here and I need to print my list so I can mark off packages as they arrive.   I will update the Swap Page (find the Page listing in the sidebar under FREE PDF PATTERNS).  That will take you to the swap page.  I will update that page on the Sunday with all the packages that have arrived by that time and then update it again at the end of next week.  So you can check that list  to see whether or not your package is vacationing in my sewing room. 🙂

I’ve still got a few more swap blocks I want to make — some evil sewing elf was messing with my seam allowances and I have a couple blocks that are too small to swap — see I make me follow the swap rules too. LOL  (Besides I bought a couple new batik fqs last weekend that are calling out to be made into blocks) 😉

Strictly for the Birds and other stuff

    The first pattern in the series Strictly for the Birds will be available to download on February 17.



You will find a button in the sidebar that looks like the one pictured here – that will take you to the project page for all Strictly for the Birds info.  All new patterns and information will be added to that page.


As for other stuff — pieces, lots of pieces I’ve been cutting and sewing this afternoon.  In addition to the swap blocks already made I think this is 27 more blocks in various stages of assembly.  I’m on to some pressing of them next.






And finally – the final photo of Drifted Pearls,my finished Loopy Ewe 1st Quarter Challenge project – completed with nearly 2-1/2 months to spare.  Now that I’ve got a completed project photo – I can rip it apart since I don’t know any skinny necked ostriches, emus  or giraffes to give it to and reuse that yarn.  Tho I could head over to the Vilas Zoo to see if one of those critters might like it.  I could see some dapper little flamingo sporting it – it would go nicely with their coloring.  😉    I’ll be remaking that pattern with some modifications –like adding several inches to the length so it’s long enough to wear and making it out of a yarn with a softer hand to it. 


   The afternoon has gone buy quickly as I was sewing so I think I’ll press those corners on the batik pieces and then find some dinner.  I made baked spiral ham (really good sale at the store) and german potato salad yesterday for dinner and have lots of leftovers I can just heat up and then get back to sewing.

Tomorrow – yes really tomorrow – I do plan to clean up the sewing room table (I’ve been sewing in  my living room – partly because the sewing table is a mess, but mostly because it’s much warmer in my living room than the sewing room.)  I want to get at least one quilt layered before I have to go back to work.

Batik Lifesaver Blocks and Starshine progress

Finally I got started on my swap blocks.    I was using the smaller pieces of batiks in the stash hoping to use some of them since those smaller sections never fold up in the stash nicely.  So it was putzy cutting one block from this piece, getting two blocks cut out of that one, etc.  I have several more cut cut need to cut more. 

Here’s the 9 completed blocks so far.  Nine blocks done, another oh maybe 20 or 25 to go at least.  But I’ve got a couple weeks to get them all done.

So although I wasn’t sewing on Starshine (since I made a version of it last weekend) I was stitching along on these.  So did anyone actually stitch on Starshine today?  I know friend Janet P. was busy cutting hers when she got off work today.

Batik Lifesaver Block Swap

Just a few reminders on the Batik Lifesaver Block Swap since the mailing  dates are coming up the end of this month.  If you didn’t sign up for this swap, you can ignore this blog post.

There are a lot of swappers signed up for this so it will take some time to get all  the blocks swapped.  If you are participating you MUST double check those swap rules so your package does not come back unswapped or your blocks are not returned because you didn’t follow the directions.  Below are just a few of the highlights to makes sure you have done correctly  but please reread all your swap rules and make sure your blocks conform.  If you did not follow the rules, please don’t send me your blocks.

  • You used only the required fabrics – Kona black and batiks (no hand dyed) per swap rules.
  • Your seam allowances are all PRESSED OPEN per swap rules
  • Your blocks measure 8.5″ x 8.5″  (not 8.0″ x 8.0″ or 8.0″ x 8.25″).  If your blocks are not the correct size they cannot be swapped.  Measure each one of your blocks before sending them.
  • Threads are trimmed
  • Mail your swap packages to me no earlier than January 25 and no later than February 2.  If you do not mail on or before Feb  2 I will not get your package in time to swap it. 
  • IF YOU DO NOT GET YOUR BLOCKS IN THE MAIL ON TIME OR SIGNED UP BUT ARE NOT SENDING BLOCKS FOR ANY REASON — PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE SHOW ME THE COURTESY OF LETTING ME KNOW.   Just send me an email so I can keep track of who should be mailing packages and who should be crossed off my list.
  • I plan to do the swapping the following weekend after the last mailing deadline if nothing interfers but in any even will post a block message to let you know when they are put back in the mail.

They are simple swap rules but you’d be amazed how many people simply didn’t  follow the rules on past swaps.  I can’t stress this enough – if your blocks don’t follow the rules, they will be returned unswapped and you know you would be very disappointed with that and it  is also a huge waste of my time to have to deal with blocks, etc. that clearly don’t meet the swap rules.

Now dang – I ordered some fabric on line for one of the bird designs and never thought to order Kona — I’ve got to get busy and get my blocks done but they are really quick and easy to make.  Have you got your blocks started? done?