Fabric Part 2

This is a follow up from the post on Nov 9.

I finally finished all those flying geese. All 136 of them. What a pain! I got better at them by the end, but there are plenty of wonky ones in there that I will have to fix by trimming or hiding the wonkiness in seams. Apparently I am not the only one that has trouble with them, as I found a thread on the quilting forum I frequent where people were talking about it. Turns out there are lots of methods to make them, and the one detailed in the pattern I am working with is one of the least favorites. Next time I need to make them I will know better! Oh well, another lesson learned.

The method I was using is also pretty wasteful of the fabric, as I end up clipping corners off all the fabric pieces. This made me start wondering about what people do with scraps. I know lots of people on the forum talk about scrap quilts, but I wasn’t really sure what scraps were too small to keep. Today I stumbled on the perfect thread to answer that question, and learned of “crumb” quilts. They use little bits of fabric stitched together to create larger blocks of fabric. So this Flower Patch quilt has lead to multiple lessons learned. From now own I will have a scrap bin and a bag of “crumbs” in my stash.

My next step will be to lay out my fabric combinations for the different flowers and make sure I like what I had planned out now that I can see all four fabrics together more easily. Then it is more flying geese (of a sort) for me. The next piecing I have to do will be for the inner petals, which aren’t true flying geese as it is a square rather than a rectangle. Same technique though.

There won’t be much picture worthy with it for a while still. Any picture I took now would look just like the last ones I posted on Nov 9. Once I get the flower blocks pieced I will get some photos up, but at this rate it will be a while! Between the baby, life in general, and working part time I don’t have much time these days. And I only have a week left before I am back at work full time.

Redesign

I am trying out a new theme… looks like some of the older posts with photos aren’t so good. The photos are cut off, but if you click them it will open the full sized photo. I guess I will leave this theme for a bit and see how it goes, and if new photos are also cut off like that.

More Sleep

New Mobile
<< Anna’s new battery powered mobile with a light show, even more amazing than the wind-up one.

The baby has been in her own room for nearly two weeks now, and we are all adjusting well. I know I am happy to finally have her and all her stuff in one place rather than having some in her room and the rest crammed on the changing table in our room. And now that she is out of our room, we have moved the changing table we had in there downstairs… which is incredibly convenient. Previously we were using the Moses basket on the table or counter as a changing station, and all her changing supplies were crammed in a bin. It was either that, break our backs bending over the couch to change her, or haul her upstairs every time she needed a fresh diaper. So now our lives are a bit more orderly, which makes my OCD happy.

People say that babies sometimes start sleeping better once they are in their own rooms, but not so sure that is the case here. Last night was the first time she has slept more than 3-4 hours in one stretch in a long time.

Last night was unexpectedly great. I fed her around 9, she went to sleep around 10, and didn’t wake up until 6. Hopefully that will continue! I have really missed those few times she slept 7 hours. Of course I didn’t get but maybe 4-5 hours of sleep last night. I went to bed around 1:00, fully expecting her to wake up any minute. So maybe tonight I will try to go to sleep earlier, maybe she will sleep through the night again and I can get a decent night’s sleep!

And she is continuing to grow like a weed. I have no idea what she weighs now, but it has to be about 11.5 pounds. When I hold her, or see other people hold her, sometimes I notice exactly how much she has grown and I am amazed. Just this morning I realized her legs are hanging off the nursing pillow at the knee. And the other day when her great-granny was holding her in the crook of her arm, Anna’s legs were off her lap at the knee. This also means I get to buy more clothes for her, which is always fun.

I had thought she had so much clothing for this size that I wouldn’t have to get anything for her until around Christmas, but I was wrong. She has outgrown all those 0-3 month onesies, and is now about to completely fill out the 3 month size. Plus the weather changed and I realized she was really lacking layered clothing. She had a lot of short sleeve stuff, and some heavier hoodies, but only one outfit with a thin long sleeve shirt to wear jacket-style over a onesie. So I had to go shopping (had to, lol, like it was a chore… I love baby clothes shopping) for some outfits that had a light long sleeve cardigan/shirt/etc. She also needed new PJ’s with long sleeves since she has learned to consistently bust out of her swaddle. Every morning I would go to feed her and her little arms would be so cold! So now she has several long sleeve onesies, a few sleep sacks, and some outfits with a light jacket/shirt. And I bet she will outgrow all of that by Christmas.

As I have been typing this I was watching her sleep on the baby monitor. She has been twisting and squirming, and is now fully awake. Guess I better go get her before she realizes she needs a new diaper and breakfast part 2.

Crib

A few nights ago we made the transition from bassinet to crib. I started with letting her nap in her crib a few times, then just dove in and put her down to sleep for the night. We were both a little nervous about her being in another room for some reason, even though we had the monitor. Sean decided to sleep in there with her the first night, so I crawled in bed with him. We both stayed with her until she woke up for her middle of the night feeding, then I went to my bed and cuddled up with the baby monitor.

She seems to be doing well in her crib, although I wish she would sleep longer. I think she is going through another growth spurt, as she has been wanting to eat constantly and has gone back to a four-hour schedule at night. Hopefully the growth spurt, or whatever it is, won’t last much longer and she will give us some more 7-hour nights.

I am also hoping we can start moving towards getting her on a schedule where we can put her down and let her go to sleep on her own. She actually went to sleep on her own in the crib a couple times now. I laid her under the mobile and let her just hang out watching it spin until she drifted off. The first time it happened she didn’t sleep long at all, but the second time she slept for a couple hours. Seems like a sign of hope!

Speaking of her mobile, Anna absolutely loves it. The only trouble is I have to wind the thing every few minutes. She will just lay there and stare at it though. I think the next time we are at the baby store I will have to look for a battery powered one.

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(yes the baby monitor camera is sitting in there with her… we hadn’t mounted it yet and it wasn’t like she was gonna roll over there and try to play with it)

Fabric!

The fabric a kind lady from the Quilting Board forum sent me arrived a few days ago. I snapped a photo of the fabric and the patterns she sent, you can see it laid out on the table in the photos below. Some of the fabric will work well for her quilt I think, but others aren’t really going to fit. I can still add it to my stash for future projects though. There are a few fabrics in there that will be good for the “I Spy” quilt I have started collecting charms (5″ squares) for. The quality of the fabric isn’t the best, but it will be fine for projects that aren’t going to have a lot of wear. Anything I make this early in my quilting hobby isn’t going to be great anyway. It was really awesome of her, a perfect stranger, to send all this to us.

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It will be a while before I start on mom’s quilt. Next time she comes up to visit we will plan out what to make for her. I have some fabric in my stash that might work with what was sent, so we can look through all the fabric options and pick a pattern. Should be fun!

In the meantime, I have started on my Flower Patch quilt. This one is going to be pretty tedious I think, just because of all the flying geese in it. There are 17 flowers in the quilt, with 8 flying geese each… so that is 136 total. Plus the inner petals are done with the same sort of method, so you might as well add another 34 to that number. I am getting faster at them as I go, but they are a little demanding just because you have to get everything lined up right and press them as you go. So the process is: (view flying geese link so this makes more sense)

1. draw a diagonal line on the square from corner to corner, this is the stitch line
2. line up a square on the left and stitch it
(potentially add a step here to rip the seams and do it over if it isn’t lined up right)
3. Trim off excess material
4. press to set stitches
5. fold seam toward rectangle and press it
6. repeat 2-5 for right side of rectangle, only pressing seam toward square
7. spray with starch and press the whole thing
8. repeat 170 times…

Below is a photo of the fabric cut and ready for piecing. I have them grouped in a bundle for each flower. I will go through and sew all the components for the flowers, then lay them out to make sure I like the colors I have put together before I sew the whole block (that makes the flower) together, in case I want to swap some colors around. This also means that I haven’t chosen the blocks for the flower centers yet, I am waiting until I see all the flowers mocked up before I decide what to use for the centers.

Although it is dim, the first photo is fairly accurate for colors, but the second is not. The solid fabric in the second picture is a light cream color, but it looks more yellowish in the picture. You can actually see the cream fabric in the first picture up top, folded on the table under a ruler. The color still isn’t exactly right in that photo, but it is a heck of a lot closer than the photo below.

The second pic below shows the first flower components I pieced. For the rest of the flowers I am not piecing the inner petals yet (the large square) because I want to make sure I like my color choices while I can still easily swap the outer petals around. I just did the first one so I could see how things were going to fit together. If I regret sewing those together later I can always rip the seams and swap the fabric.

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Yellow Brick Road

I have finished piecing the top of my Yellow Brick Road quilt, sans the border. I need to make a trip to a fabric store for material to make the border, as well as pick up batting and material for the back. That is probably going to wait until I am getting a pay check again though. So, in the meantime, I am going to start on another quilt top.

This photo isn’t that great, but here it is anyway. Once I get the quilt finished I will try to post a decent photo.

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This is the quilt I am working on now. I am using some fabric that I had originally purchased to make a Hopscotch quilt with, but when I pulled the pattern out to start on it I discovered I didn’t like it as much as I thought I did when I bought it. So I scoured the web for an alternative. Someone on the Quilting Board forum pointed me towards this one and it will be perfect for the fabric I have. I started planning out my fabric pairings tonight, and hope to get started on it in earnest within the next day or so.

Oh, and a couple weeks ago I posted about the nice lady that was sending a box of fabric to me so I could make a quilt for my mom. That box should arrive tomorrow! I am looking forward to seeing what she sent. While I am working on the flower quilt I will start planning out what to do for mom. I have a pattern in mind, and she said she liked it when I showed it to her last week. Once I see the fabric I will be able to make a plan for real; I will post photos when the fabric arrives.

In that post I had also mentioned the “I Spy” swap… the deadline for joining the swap passed on Oct 31, and the charms should be mailed out starting Nov 9. I am looking forward to seeing what is there. There will be another swap next month and I am already thinking about joining it so I can build up a collection of charms for a future quilt. I am thinking it will be a good quilt for Anna to have fun with when she is a little older.