Friday, November 9, 2018

First Snowfall

"The first fall of snow is not only an event, it is a magical event. You go to bed in one kind of a world and wake up in another quite different, and if this is not enchantment then where is it to be found?"  - J.B. Priestly

The first snowfall of the season always thrills me and makes me feel like a child again.

Is it fall or winter? 

I think it's going to be a good day for sewing . . . .  

Finishing up my stars and will put them together into a quilt early next year. 

Still need to sew a border on this one before we begin a new Mystery Quilt in 2019 -

Have a great weekend!

Monday, November 5, 2018

Dear Jane Progress

Marian and Jeanne brought their finished DJ tops to my retreat here in the Chicago area last month. What an inspiration that was!

Seeing these lovely quilts really motivated me to get back on track and finish putting all of my own blocks together. So, now my Dear Jane quilt is half sashed. I'd say half finished, but I still have to make the triangles. Sashing first - or maybe I'll take a break from that and make some triangles. Who knows? I do have to tell you that I am so proud of myself for not giving up! It's been "only" eight years since I started my Jane journey . . . . 

So, if you think you're finished with that DJ when you're actually not, or you thought of starting one but never did, there's still hope. Drag it out or buy the book and make a plan. Believe me, it will be worth every frustrating stitch. Make sure you take advantage of every website and tip available. The Dear Jane website has lots of tips and lessons to help you so check it out. When I first started making mine, I printed out the lessons and tips and placed them in a notebook. Lots of help there if you find you're struggling. The Dear Jane software by EQ was also invaluable to me. There are lots of lessons and tips included with that too. It's a stand alone software so you don't need Electric Quilt for it to work. That Quilt is another good resource for making the blocks. Then, just take it block by block, one at a time, and they'll add up. 

The very first Dear Jane quilt I saw up close, made by Karan Flanscha of Iowa, had 1/2" blue cornerstones. I was impressed with the way they looked in the quilt and so decided to use the cornerstones in mine too. 

Some of my early blocks look rather wonky. I was never happy with the way my first version of this F-13 block turned out. It's different from Jane's original block. See? When I made it years ago, I followed the design in the book, not the pic of Jane's block (duh) and it's slightly different. It's always bothered me that the circles don't touch. Silly of me perhaps, but I took the time to redo it last week and now I like it much better and in brown. I knew it would always bother me if I didn't change it. And it really didn't take long. I use the starch and no-melt templates method of applique to make the shapes, then stitch on by hand. That's pretty fast and easy with a little practice. Makes applique fun too.

So here's my almost half-finished quilt. I'm sewing it into unequal quadrants and then sewing the quadrants together. Two down . . .

*  *  *

Fall has arrived here in the Chicago area but it's leaving fast . . . . Glad I was able to get out to a local forest preserve one day last week to take some pics before all the leaves fell. I think I missed the really vibrant colors by a couple of days.

Have a good week - Don't forget to vote tomorrow!