Friday, January 5, 2018

First Week of January

It was a quiet changeover from 2017 to 2018 at our house. We didn't even stay awake until midnight! And the week has begun quietly resuming usual activities: Big Cypress Quilters, line dancing, and Bible study. In Bible study we're doing Kelly Minter's book Nehemiah, an Old Testament book I've wanted to go in-depth with for a long time. I have many notes written in the margins of my Bible, having determined at least eight years ago, that Nehemiah is about taking on a God-directed project that helps others. For those who've known me for a long time, and are familiar with the quiltmaking ministry I led in Iowa, I made analogies between making quilts in Stitchin' Mission and Nehemiah's efforts to rebuild the temple in Jerusalem.

The only activity it looks like I won't be engaging in for a while is Ukulele Players Club. I showed up at 12:15 on Thursday for the 12:30 start to the club strum and sing, and along with about a dozen other people was denied admittance to the room because it was at capacity (fire code says 115 people). To say I was crushed is an understatement because I was scheduled to go to the microphone and sing one of the songs, and have my picture taken with the Ukulele Players Performance Group. Apparently snowbirds and guests in The Villages have taken over for a while. It was suggested by the rec center manager that we come earlier to get a seat, but that's a seasonal game I won't play. Go early to sit in a chair for an hour or more before the club sing starts, just to get in the room? I have better things to do with my time. So, I'll continue to sing and strum at performances - we're playing and singing for a neighborhood group next Tuesday evening - and avoid the regular club meetings on Thursdays until I can get in again. Disappointing for sure. But that's how it is when you live full-time in a community with thousands of part-time residents.

In my sewing room, I've been working toward my first 2018 finish. It's my 58" X 58" Rainbow Rounds quilt (also known as Bufferwheel Quilt). I completed foundation paper piecing 16 blocks and made them into a quilt top in September, while on retreat with my friends. It's the only quilt top I have that needs quilting, so I've been excited about finishing it.

Also, this was my chance to use homemade basting spray on a large quilt. In December, I used this spray on smaller quilts that quilted-up easily, and I've been anxious to see how it works on a large quilt.

Dan commented on the smell when he came into my sewing room to see what I was doing. That comes from the rubbing alcohol. I opened a window and turned on the ceiling fan. An Instagram friend told me that the Pinterest recipe she found uses vodka, which likely doesn't have the intense odor. Here's the recipe I used.

One batch covers a lot, and would easily baste two large quilts. Also, the basting spray was still good in the bottle after two weeks. 

After allowing the quilt to stay on the table like this, under the ceiling fan, for about two hours, I untaped it and moved it to the guest room bed, where I placed the quilt backside up, and turned on the ceiling fan. I left it that way overnight and started quilting the next afternoon.

Choosing a quilting design is always a small hurdle. All I knew for sure is that I wanted to quilt an allover design. I browsed Pinterest to find this swirl pattern demonstrated by Angela Walters. The design is repetitive, so you get good at it pretty quickly. I tested it with my acrylic board and dry erase markers and liked it.  

By that evening, this is what it looked like. The basting spray worked beautifully! I haven't had a single issue with fabric scooching, or tucks. I love homemade basting spray! And how about that texture?! That's using only a single layer of Request Loft Quilter's Dream Cotton!

In the light of day... The thread I'm using is YLI 50-weight polished cotton in the color silver. 

Just as soon as I say I'm caught up on 6" foundation paper piece blocks for the Year of Scrappy Triangles, Leila releases another one. These are blocks 10, 11, and 12, and block 13 needs to be made.

Yesterday's mail delivered my long-preordered Modern Quilts book compiled by three leaders of the Modern Quilt Guild: Riane Menardi, Alissa Haight-Carlton, and Heather Grant. I was honored when Riane contacted me last February for permission to use my Lime 'n Luxe quilt in the book. 

Here is Lime 'n Luxe on page 173, right across from Kim Soper's glorious Lincoln quilt. Both our quilts were displayed at QuiltCon in Savannah (February 2017). 

Interestingly, whoever laid-out the book, rotated my quilt 90 degrees counterclockwise. Yep, it's laying on it's side! I'm trying to figure out how that happened. On the contract I wrote which way to orient the quilt, and I just confirmed that I wrote it correctly. Also, there's a sleeve on the quilt back, so the photographer would have known which way was up. Oh well. I guess it doesn't look bad this way either. I'm honored to have had my quilt included among those made by such a prestigious line-up of modern quilters. 

This is the pile of stuff in our guest room, waiting for me to take to Monday evening's Central Florida MQG meeting. It seems I often take a "pile" to our meetings! Five quilts are being passed on for our Central Florida MQG display - "What Makes a Quilt Modern?" - at World Quilt Florida. I think we have about 24 quilts being displayed from our chapter, so if you attend World Quilt Florida at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, January 18, 19, and 20, look for our display. Lime 'n Luxe is one of my own three quilts being displayed. 

Also, my Florida quilt has been juried into the World Quilt Florida show. I shipped it earlier this week.

This evening I plan to sit at my Janome continuing to quilt Rainbow Rounds. I'll be wearing Cuddleduds and have a quilt over my lap because it's been cold here in Central Florida... colder than we've experienced in the 5-1/2 years we've been here. Between no sunshine and high winds, a couple times it's felt as cold as 29 degrees. Walking the dog has not been fun! I know. I've turned into a Florida woo-sie. I'm not a bit ashamed. Linda


  1. Your quilting is just beautiful and thanks for the homemade basting spray tip. I should, though use up the three cans which have been sitting on my shelf for the past year. I think your regular group and you should do a little protest song outside the meeting room and sing Bye, Bye Snowbirds (ala Everly Bros. tune). Stay warm!

  2. Love the Rainbow Rounds quilt. The texture is amazing. I read over the spray basting recipe an filed it away for possible future use. Congrats on your quilt being in the book. I got my copy yesterday and was a little disappointed with the printing. The color was off on my quilt, making it seem quite dark. I felt like several of the other quilts seemed dark too. It's still quite exciting though to be included in such a great compilation of modern quilts.

  3. What a fun post, tho I'm so disappointed about your uke club! Gee whiz. You know, there are guilds that have a dayatime and evening meeting on the same day. You'd think there was a way to include everyone!

    Anyway, glad the homemade spray worked well - love what you're doing on that quilt! Congrats too on being in 'the book'! I kick myself for at least not trying. oh well...

  4. Great assortment of information in this post Linda! Do you have any blog posts written about Stitchin' Mission and Nehemiah? I'd love to read more about this.

    I've been really interested in your discussions on homemade basting spray. I may have to give this a try. I think I could pull it off down in our basement. We'll see :o)

    Gosh how disappointing about the ukulele club! I'm surprised the club has not established some type of guest sign-up with a limited number allowed so that regular members don't get bumped.

  5. Always plenty to keep you busy Linda! Maybe its time for the ukulele club for find a new meeting place! I wouldn't be sitting there waiting either. Of course, you could always take some sewing! I'm going to make my basting spray this week. I am interested to try it on one last quilt I have to be basted. Your swirly design looks fabulous! Wow! That is cold...brrrr! Stay warm. We had 42C (107F) here yesterday and Sydney gets it today!

  6. Wow, and I felt like I was keeping busy! I really like the scrappy triangles QAL blocks! Looks right up my alley. I’d be discouraged about the uke meeting, too. But I suppose you’re right, what is, is. Doesn’t really seem fair, and I’m a snowbird! I’ve had my fill of this cold, gloomy weather, too. It has been 30+ degrees below the normal average temp far too much, and even when it warms up, it’s still cold. I might have to migrate further south in the future!



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