Thursday, June 4, 2020

Tropical Rainy Days

As Tropical Storm Crisobal begins to creep into Central Florida I'm still spending my days she-caving.

I made more than 100 Scrap Snap Quilt Along blocks, though I didn't participate in the quilt along that began in January. From only scraps, I made every 6-1/2" X 6-1/2" unfinished block and could still make lots more.

Choosing a layout for these blocks was the most difficult part of this quilt top. I set the blocks on point to make the quilt larger, and these are the layouts I tried.  
I settled on this using a black and white stripe fabric to cut and piece triangles for the sides. The top measures 60" X 78". 

So it goes... just as soon as I finish quilting a quilt (I completed my Linda Nova quilt, and will share it in my next blog post) I've made another quilt top that needs quilting. Again I find myself with two quilt tops in the to-be-quilted queue - the Village houses quilt top, and this Scrap Snap quilt top. 

When I tire of machine quilting and feel like doing handwork, I picked up EPP. My Prudence quilt is slowly coming along as I count 18 main blocks (60 needed) and 17 setting X's (61 needed) done. These are pinned to my design wall, since all of them still have papers on the back.

I've learned that choosing fabrics, and fussy-cutting some of them for the main blocks is the most time-consuming aspect of making these blocks. I always begin with a print from my scrap bin, and then go to stash for the rest.

English Paper Piecing Tip
I also recently made an observation about EPP, and want to share it with you. Though I have made several EPP quilts, I've always used a whip stitch to join patches. (I tried flat-back stitching and didn't care for it.) In all my EPP projects, I use pale gray-colored (#623) 60-weight polyester thread: The Bottom Line by Libby Lehman for Superior Threads. If you've ever used it yourself, you know it can be somewhat "wirey," but I like how it blends with every color.

So when @paperpiecesepp shared an Instagram video of EPP with a different stitch, I gave it a go and discovered I love it! I'm now stitching as the video shows - using a blanket stitch to join patches. Just a small loop under the needle before pulling the needle through, makes a much more secure stitch. 

A bonus is that my stitches are now less visible! I'm really happy to have discovered this little difference that makes a big improvement.

On Tuesday I picked up my Bernina 440 from local servicing. Turns out that the problem I was having with the foot control sometimes working and sometimes not working (pushing down the foot and nothing happening) had everything to do with the foot itself. I have a new Bernina foot control. I'll continue to use this machine for scrap-piecing.

Dan continues to keep us well-fed during this still-mostly-quarantine time. His homemade pizza is to die for. Ingredients in this one were sausage, onion, green pepper, anise seeds, mushrooms, bacon, mozzarella cheese and cilantro. 

He's also spent time trying different key lime pie recipes, and after numerous trials has settled on the recipe from the Nellie and Joe's Key Lime Juice bottle. Searching for the best key lime pie has involved focused pie-sampling. 

This week's book recommendation is My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She's Sorry by Fredrik Backman.  Elsa is an unusually precocious almost-eight year-old living in an apartment building with her pregnant mum, mum's boyfriend, and Elsa's precious - though wildly eccentric - grandmother. Granny has a past. Granny makes up fairy tales about the Land of Almost-Awake, it's six countries of Miamas, and it's inhabitants and creatures. When Granny dies, Elsa is left to follow Granny's treasure hunt to deliver apology letters to all the people Granny has wronged. This leads to Elsa's understanding of the fairy tales, and new relationships with misunderstood people. In itself, the story is mostly charming, but as a book club selection for discussion, it holds lots of potential and analogies about life. 
Linda's score: 4.1/5.0



Anorina @SameliasMum said...

I do love that rainbowy quilt setting you decided upon and I look forward to seeing how you quilt this beauty. Thanks for sharing that information about the blanket stitch for EPP. I'll definitely try it later on today when I play with my hexies (again).
That pizza looks delicious and you gotta love it when you 'need' to sample pies. Hope you have a fab weekend :)

Anne / Springleaf Studios said...

So many wonderful colorful projects in the works will surely keep you busy and happy. Color sure helps me stay happy. Now if only my husband would cook so I could stay in my studio longer. I don't want to take the time to cook so am happy he doesn't really care about food too much. We get by on pretty simple meals and leftovers. Hope the storm leaves you alone.

KaHolly said...

Oh, wow, Linda! Such color! It excites me!

The Joyful Quilter said...

LOVE your Snap Scrap quilt!!! I enjoyed the book, but some of my friends "couldn't get into it."

Becky said...

Love your use of the black and white stripe in both quilts. I’m amazed you could tell what was gong on in that EPP video, lol.

Mystic Quilter said...

Very tasty looking pizza!! I love your Scrap Snap quilt, I had seen this QAL but just wasn't in a position to make it, perhaps in the future it would be a great way to use my scraps.

Gemini Jen NZ said...

What a great tip re the blanket stitch for EPP - I will keep that in mind as I plan to soon begin a Cherish quilt. I love the look of your Prudence!

FlourishingPalms said...

Hi Becky! You’re a no-reply commenter (no email address is associated with your name), so I’m unable to reply to you directly, but thank you for your compliment about the striped fabric. These days, a black and white stripe like this seems to be many quilters’ go-to choice for edges and bindings. As for the fast video... yes, you had to know what to look for as you watched it! Hope you get your no-comment commenter thing resolved. It has to be frustrating to comment and then never receive a reply. You probably think the person who’s blogging is rude!

Linda said...

I just love how you set your Scrap Snap top. It's gorgeous!

Pip said...

I’m quite hungry after seeing pizza and key lime pie, the ingredients for the pizza sound delicious. You have done some very clever fussy cutting, beautiful bright colours too. My Bernina machine foot is doing the same as yours was, the technician seemed to think my problem was a loose connection but I suspect a new foot control might be a better solution.

Deb said...

Thanks for the info on the EPP. What a great way to do it. Love the stripes in your Prudence quilt. They really make the colors pop. Always wonderful posts and work.


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