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Slow Quilting on the Farm

IMG_5400Not much piecing or hand work happened here on the farm last week. The sun finally showed up and it was hay making time. We made some nice hay and we have half a field yet to be mowed and then baled.

IMG_5396IIMG_5405 prepped the rest of the bottom border triangles for my Jane quilt. It rained this morning so I was able to piece 3 more triangles.

IMG_5401I’ve enjoyed quiltingIMG_5403 my little quilt projects, in fact the red and black quilt is finished and I just need to quilt 1 more row on the cheddar quilt. While I was quilting the red and black, I saw that I had one block turned wrong. No matter how hard I look things over, it seems I always have a block turned wrong! Oh well, she’s quilted now! I was asked the size of the quilts. The red/black is 21″ x 30″ (53 1/2 cm x 76 cm) and the cheddar is 25″ x 30″ (63 1/2 cm x 76 cm). I think anyway. I was measuring them in the quilting frame and I had rolled once. I’ll let you know for sure when I sew the binding.

I also managed to completely weed the garden last week. IMG_5398The green beans I’m growing on the fencing hoop are growing well and climbing. Unfortunately my tomato plants were destroyed by a groundhog. I pulled out what was left of the plants and put the cages and stakes away until next year. I don’t know if the plants would have grown out of the set back but they probably wouldn’t have yielded tomatoes until frost time. Fortunately my neighbors have a produce stand just down the road. I usually buy produce there that I don’t raise.

IMG_5393The first picking of IMG_5394green beans yielded a good peck. Plenty for eating fresh and some to put in the freezer. I always add onions to  green beans when I cook them. I also harvested the first of the broccoli. This 5 gallon pail was full of broccoli heads and there will be more to harvest this week. The garlic is ready to be pulled too.

I’d like to finish the Jane quilt top but it sure is nice to work outside again and feel the sun. It has been beautiful; low humidity and high temps in the 70’s. There was no hay making today since it rained but the Farmer is going to mow the last of the hay down tomorrow. Hopefully it will be baled before the next rain comes at the end of the week.

Little Quilting Projects

IMG_5041I originally planned to quilt my star quilt after I finished Red Radiance but I’ve changed my mind. I want to get Jane into the quilting frame the first part of September and I think the star quilt would take longer than July and August to quilt.

 

IMG_5388During last winter, IMG_5390I pieced several small quilts and I have put 2 of them in the quilting frame to quilt. They are both made from patterns I received when I participated in the Prairie Women Journey the winter of ’13-’14. They should quilt fairly fast.

IMG_5392I’ve also start prepping for the bottom border of Jane. The first two triangles in the row are pieced. I realized there should be a blue triangle instead of the white one in the 2nd triangle after I had the block pieced. My Jane quilt is going to be unique!

I don’t know how much sewing and quilting will be completed this week. It has stopped raining and the hay has been mowed. I need to work in the garden tomorrow and the flowerbeds need help too. Summer has finally arrived.

I’ve linked to Esther’s Wednesday WOW.

Red Radiance is Finished!

The binding and label have been attached to Red Radiance and she has been added to the Projects Finished list. Having a finish gives me such a sense of accomplishment!

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The pattern for Red Radiance came from the December 2000 issue of American Patchwork & Quilting magazine. She was designed by Betty Alderman, Cindy Oates and Laurene Sinema.

IMG_5384I’ve also completed the rest of the triangles for the right side border for the Jane Stickle quilt. These 6 triangles all have applique of some sort, some more than others.

 

 

 

 

 

The border with the alternate white triangles.

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What hand project am I going to work on now? I’m not going to start a new project. I have several small tops that need to be quilted and they will be going into the quilting frame but not this week-end. This week-end I’m enjoying time with our son from upper New York state and our grandson.

I’ve linked up to Kathy’s Slow Stitchin Sunday and Sew Many Ways.

Red Radiance is Quilted!

IMG_5381Sunday evening I finished the quilting on Red Radiance! She needs to be trimmed and have the binding sewn. I not sure how soon that will happen. This picture looks blurry, but if you click on it, the photo that pulls up looks much better.

 

 

The left side triangle border for my Jane is now completed.

 

IMG_5367Left part of border.

 

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Right side of border.

 

IMG_5383The right side border is prepped and I was able to sew 9 triangles the end of last week.  This week has been very busy and I haven’t had time for hand work or piecing.

We’ve been getting constant rain for the last 3 weeks, not everyday but often enough we can’t get in the fields. The problem is now it is time for  the 2nd cutting of hay. We decided to go for it and mowed down a field last Saturday to wet bale and wrap on Monday. Sure enough, it rained late Saturday night or very early Sunday morning. (I heard it raining but I was too sleepy to look at the clock to see what time it was.)

Monday morning we had fog and I couldn’t start raking until around 9 am. It was very overcast and dreary and it looked like it could rain any minute.

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We need to rake the windrows together to make the bales pack better.

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_5379We custom hire a neighbor to come and bale the field.

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_5380While he is baling, the Farmer and I pick up the bales. I drive the tractor and wagon and he runs the skidloader. The skidloader has a bale punch with 3 prongs. He stabs it into the bales and lifts it onto the wagon. We can fit 15 bales on the wagon.

 

IMG_5376I pull the wagon to where the bales are going to be wrapped and the Farmer unloads the wagon. He stacks them in a row, ready for the wrapper. In the background you can see bales we wrapped from the 1st cutting in May. We got 70 bales wrapped and this will be fed to the cows next winter.

 

IMG_5372Like I said earlier, we’ve had constant rain and I have been busy sewing on my Jane. I’ve my neglected the garden and it looks like a disaster! See the green beans there next to the garlic? The garlic is fine since it was mulched.

 

 

IMG_5373The broccoli is doing great, they love all the rain, but the potatoes are under attack by potato bugs.

Today was garden clean up day. I pulled weeds, hoed and tilled. It looks a lot better than it did this morning, but she still needs more work. When I’m satisfied, I’ll take updated pictures.

Jane Stickle Quilt – Top Border Row

I had a week off from the Jane Stickle quilt. Now it is back to work!

I cut the alternate triangle blocks for the border rows and the top border row is now completed. I had to take a picture of each half of the border. It was too small when I tried to take a photo of the whole row.

Left –

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Right –

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Now I need to prep the blocks for the left border. It seems like it takes longer to prep than it does to piece the triangles.

I’m linking to Esther’s Wednesday Wow!

Red Radiance Time

IMG_5342The week with the grands went fast and now it is just the Farmer and I. The small quilting frame has been carried back downstairs and I’m ready to start quilting again. But first I needed to remark some of the quilting lines. I took pictures of her while she was out of the frame.

 

IMG_5343And the back.

I have mixed feeling about this quilting hoop. It’s great for the center section but more challenging for the outside edge. I guess I didn’t cut my backing fabric large enough. It is definitely bigger than the center but quilting the outside triangles is annoying.

 

IMG_5344My thimble marks where I’m quilting at the moment. I’m guessing she’s 3/4th completed.

It feels really good to be quilting again and I’m going to try to finish this quilt this month. Since I’ve publicly announced it, you can hold me to it.

Next week I’m also hoping to work on the top row of the Jane Stickle quilt. I need to cut out the white alternate triangles and sew the row together.

I’ve linked to Kathy’s Slow quilting Sunday.

Jane Stickle Triangles, Crops and the Garden

May was a very busy month. Yards to mow, crops to plant, hay to make, garden to plant and, of course, quilts to piece. I’m going to start with quilts first.

IMG_5304I made good progress in May on unfinished projects. Besides the Medallion quilt top I showed you several posts ago, I’ve finished a long time Zig-Zag 9-Patch project that was started many years ago. The intent was to use up older fabrics but this didn’t even put a dent in the stash. He will be gifted to a friend who will add borders and hand quilt him.

 

 

 

IMG_5302I embroidered these quilt blocks years ago. They came 6 in a package but there were only 3 packages available. Using one of my quilting stencils, I marked and embroidered 2 more to make 20 blocks. I’ve cut pieces for flying geese to make the side borders wider; the geese will be leaders and enders for the summer. There will be another border after the geese, but just one step at a time.

 

 

IMG_5306I had to take a break from quilting on Red Radiance. My fingers got too sore and developed some cracks. Ouch! But I could applique.

 

 

 

IMG_5305The light green sashes have been attached and I started appliquing the hearts. Sometime I’m going to get a good photo of this crib quilt. I know I cropped this photo. I guess the computer wanted to show you the green grass!

 

 

IMG_5307With those projects out-of-the-way, it was time to pick up Jane again. I prepped the top row of triangles, started sewing and here they are. I’ve made a few changes. One of the changes was to eliminate the annoyingly narrow white borders that were on some of the triangles. I just cut the pieces longer and extended them into the seam allowance. I need to cut out the alternate plain triangles so the whole row can be sewn together before prepping the next row.

IMG_5330We were able to plant all of the soybeans in the early part of May but corn planting was halted because of rain. When the soil was dry enough to plant the rest of the corn, the hay was ready to be mown. Forty acres of hay made 155 bales which were wrapped. We would have like to have dry baled some hay, but they were calling for rain and we didn’t want to risk getting it ruined. That was the right decision. Hopefully we will be able to dry bale the next cutting. And we did plant the rest of the corn the same week.

IMG_5324Soybeans were no-tilled into the corn stubble in the field south of my garden. I will be showing you their progress over the summer.

I haven’t been very enthused about gardening this year but everything is planted now except for the winter squash. The early planted vegetable are doing fairly well. Some of the early green beans didn’t survive the light frost we got the middle of the month. After the crops were all in, the Farmer was able to help in the garden. My tomato cages never stay upright when the tomato plants are mature. They always fall over because of the weight. The Farmer pounds a fence post into each individual cage to keep it upright.

IMG_5326This year I’m experimenting with growing green beans on this curved fencing panel. (This was also a Farmer job) The idea is the pole beans will grow up the fence and the green beans will hang down so I can easily pick them and save stress on my knees.

IMG_5327The amaryllis bulbs have been transplanted into the garden. I try to keep the soil from the pots intact and set the roots/potting soil into the hole, cover with soil, then mulch. They normally just sit there for several weeks and I worry that I’ve killed them. The roots are growing into the surrounding soil. Once the roots have spread out, they send up new green leaves. They have all survived.

The west end of the garden IMG_5329is planted with broccoli plants I started and transplanted into the garden. Once the plants are full size, I’ll plant winter squash seeds into the paths between the broccoli plants. About the time the broccoli is finished yielding, the squash should really be taking off and spread over the broccoli plants, I hope anyway. On the east side of the broccoli is a row of early red potatoes. Yukon Gold potatoes were planted later and haven’t popped up yet. As you can see, we’ve been receiving plenty of rain.

This is what happened in May here on the farm. What is happening this first week of June? We’re busy making memories with 6 of our grandchildren!

Salinda Rupp Quilt – Nearly Insane

The Jane Stickle quilt is the most challenging (to me anyway) quilt I’ve ever pieced. I’ve been pleasantly surprised by how much I’m enjoying the foundation paper piecing. And since I’ve found Anina’s blog, That Quilt, the piecing has gone rather smoothly. I still have the triangles to piece but I’m hoping to complete the piecing of this quilt by the end of this year.

Even though my main focus for this year has been the Jane quilt, I’m still thinking about all the other quilts I want to make. I’ve been surprised by the number of quilters who complete their Jane, then start all over again with another one! Not me, I have too many quilts I want to make to start over on the same pattern again.

When my Jane is completed, I think it is the foundation paper piecing method I’ll miss. There is something I find satisfying in the process. I was thinking about other quilts that are foundation paper pieced and one of them is the Sallinda Rupp quilt, renamed Nearly Insane by Liz Lois.

These blocks are 6 inches finished so they are larger than Jane but they usually contain even more pieces. I was hoping I could find a blog that would help me with the piecing like the That Quilt site did with Jane, but all I could find was the Nearly Insane Fans blog. No one has posted there since October 14, 2014. They don’t give detailed instructions on how to piece the blocks, they just show pictures of their blocks.

IMG_5297So, the challenge is, can I figure out how to foundation paper piece these blocks on my own? Well, here is block 1. I’m fairly satisfied with the fabrics I’ve used, the two light blues in the center are similar, but I’m not dissatisfied enough to make another one. This block contains 37 pieces but went together fairly easily.

So, yes I am going to start a Nearly Insane Quilt in January 2016 using the blues and yellows I already have in my stash. My friend Elaine is going to piece along with me. It’s nice to have someone working on the same project at the same time so we can cheer each other on.

 

Medallion Quilt Top

IMG_5295One of the projects I wanted to complete this May, was borders for this Medallion quilt top designed by Edyta Sitar. I like her projects. The problem is most of them are for “throws” not bed quilts so I needed to make it larger. Nothing jumped out at me and said This is the border! I finally decided to attach  white fabric and quilt a design on it.

I had purchased a border print several years ago for the outside border. Unfortunately the colors of the border print didn’t blend nicely with the scrappy colors of the pieced blocks which was rather frustrating. I pulled out fabrics that I thought might work and I finally ended up using this reddish-maroon fabric. I’ve had it for a long time, in fact the selvage reads Joan Kessler – 1994 for Concord Fabrics.

The fabric is more attractive in real life than in the photo. Here is a link to a picture of the fabric.

I want to hand quilt this quilt and I’m hoping that happens in the fall.

Applique Quilt

During my month’s sabbatical from the Jane Stickel quilt, I’m trying to finish some projects and finally sewed the binding on this quilt.

IMG_5291Applique was always a skill I had wanted to acquire, but never did. The Maple Leaf Quilt guild gladly taught me several techniques for applique. I was hooked and ready to go.

I decided I would make an applique quilt for our daughter and this is what I came up with. The designs for the blocks came from many different sources. When the blocks were sewn together, the top formed a square and I don’t like square quilts. I looked through some of the patterns I brought home from my mother’s stash and found the simple flower design that is on the top border of the quilt. My applique had improved in the two years from the beginning of the quilt to the border applique. I can do more quality work now but this is where I was at in 2008.

I had always planned to hand quilt this project but that never happened. Late last fall I took the top to the Three Sisters  Fabric shop. Tammy Payette custom quilted her with beautiful feathers and returned her to me in January. I don’t think I could have hand quilted her this nice.

The details of the quilting show better if you click on the photo.

Linking up with Throw Back Thursday 10/1/2015.