Sunday, December 17, 2017

How Do You Eat an Elephant?

One bite at a time...

This is my Lifetime Quilt, Thousands of 1.25" finished half square triangle units, all from reproduction fabrics. I give step-by-step instructions and more background in this post, written more than two years ago. This post shows how I make the units today, cutting pairs with a half square triangle ruler:  updated method.  What you see here are 7296 triangles.

When finished it will be 100" x 100" and contain 12,800 triangles. Today I wanted to see how far along I am--I have decided I want to finish this quilt in 2018. So far, it's been made exclusively as my "Leader/Ender" project, but it may get a little more attention in the coming months. Today I have to cut more triangle pairs, the supply is getting low.

Yesterday I taught two classes. First, was Mug Rugs to two students who were excited to make small projects, perfect for gifts. Rosa brought her machine and in two hours completed these, and was eager to go home and make more:

Top one is completely done, bottom needs quilting

The bottom one is the reverse side of the bottom one shown above--adorable!
The other student, Mary, brought her notebook and while Rosa sewed, we all discussed lots more design ideas--Pinterest has a wealth of pictures to give you ideas. Decide on a size you like, then cut extra hunks of batting into that size. Throughout the year you can easily make one or two a month and then have great gifts ready to go by Christmas. Mary works with a group making Quilts of Valor and she liked my idea of using the leftover fabrics from each quilt to make a pair of mug rugs to present to the spouse of the veteran, when presenting the quilt.

The afternoon class was Session 4 of Long Time Gone--13 students are plugging away at this one:

 Not everyone was able to be in class this time and not everyone put their whole quilt up but aren't these fun?!

We were all taken with Joan's Birdhouses, a wonderful way to accent this block.

They don't bring machines to this class, just the pattern book and their questions and their blocks. I bring my  machine and demo lots of tips for each block, and I do believe they are all learning a lot.

I have the first 5 sections done--next month I'll show them how to do partial seaming to join Section 5 blocks together.

And now for a laugh--Cyndi in the Long Tine Gone class sat where Rosa had been in the Mug Rug class. Cyndi raided the trash bucket for the chunks of fabric she found there--what Rosa threw away, Cyndi recognized as perfect for our tiny little blocks. One woman's trash is another woman's treasure:

Christmas is a week away and I have two projects to start and finish by then. And I have to clear off the extra spare bed, the one I call my "Archaeological Dig":

Since we have two spare bedrooms, I keep one always ready for guests, but this one... This one holds quilts most of the time. It will take me a while to remove and dump in a pile in the studio, most of these quilts.

Fortunately, several are being shipped to Road to California tomorrow. The Smitten class filled the first week, the Antique Rose Star has only a few spots left, and 2-for-1 is more than half full, quite a good showing for this largely "unknown" teacher. If you are attending Road to California in January 2018, I'd love to see you in class OR in the Roundabout Event Saturday evening--I'll be demonstrating several super tips for improving your binding technique. More info is here.

If you don't hear from me this week, I'm either buried under quilts, sewing those gifts, or baking cookies. Happy Hanukkah, Merry Christmas, blessed Kwanzaa, whatever you celebrate may it include family and friends.

Let's quilt,



  1. YOur HST quilt is coming along nicely!!
    Class blocks look awesome!! So excited you are teaching in CA!! Merry Christmas, friend.

  2. Outstanding triangle project. I'm tempted, very tempted to try the same. Wishing you and yours a Happy Christmas.