Wednesday, December 31, 2014


And as you make your New Year resolutions for 2015
If you don't know where you are going,
You might end up someplace else.
Yogi Berra

Monday, December 29, 2014

Block of the Month

I've become quite fond of a few FB Groups.  When you do most of your quilts by hand, you have to search out kindred spirits. The FB Groups provide me with quilters that have something in common with me.   Quilters are indeed on the rise, but hand work is still a small minority. I've joined a number of groups that are strictly for hand working quilters; but I've also joined several groups that are not exclusively hand work but are at least excepting of quilters who work by hand. 

One of these groups, Quilters Block of the Month is not all hand piecers and maybe not any but I like the group and the challenge of making at least one block a month is fun  The blocks the group presents come from Quilters Cache.   The group has divided the BOM into Easy, Intermediate, and Advanced.  They have also presented a number of alternate blocks. I'm hand piecing the surprise here.

First I recreated the blocks on EQ7 and played with the colors.  It also gave me a better understanding of the pieces I needed to make the block.

Then I checked out  Cathi's List  on Inklingo.  This gave me the collections I would need to make this block with Inklingo.

From there I then printed the shapes I needed and hand pieced them together. 

Each block is 12 inch square.  The first block I prepared is called Four Winds (an alternate block on the FB Group) by the people at Quilter's Cache.  The block was easily broken up into 2 inch sections.  I used Inklingo Collections that I already owned.  If you wish to do this block you will need 2 inch half square triangles and 2 inch squares. 

The photo directly below shows my string piecing process.  String piecing makes hand piecing go faster, just as string piecing moves things along when you are machine piecing.  Down in the bottom left corner of the photo you can see a print out of my EQ7 rendition of the block. I needed this to follow the block pattern.

Four Winds Process of Piecing
Here is the finished block.

Four Winds Block Finished

This first block went so quickly that I decided to piece the January Block as well.  Named Arrowheads by Quilter's Cache, this block can also be divided into sections that are found in various Inklingo Collections.

Arrowheads Block Finished
Rotation Spinning Counter Clockwise

The Quilter's Cache block spins clockwise.  I made mine spinning counter clockwise.

The Arrowheads block is made of 1.5 inch squares, 3 inch triangles, 1.5 inch triangles. and 2.12 inch triangles.  If you want to piece this block using Inklingo, head off to Cathi's List for the collections you will need.

I plan to make the rest of the blocks using this same method so I spent time recreating the blocks in EQ7 so that I can continue to play with color way and possible changes.  Love EQ really because it allows for so much creativity. I love Inklingo because it allows me to piece with ease and accuracy.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

My Celtic Solstice

My pick of color way in the center

Last year in November, I began Celtic Solstice, a mystery quilt created by Bonnie Hunter.  Linda Franz - Inklingo - hooked up with Bonnie Hunter and created a Celtic Solstice Shape Collection.  Bonnie Hunter had a color way picked.  Linda choose another, and I had so many scraps of blue, I chose a blue color way with neutrals of light gray and cream.  Using Inklingo, I printed out my pieces.

I put the clues together...there were 5 of them and then the reveal....clue 6. Inklingo made the process a pleasure.  I must admit I took my time.  I kept getting distracted by other quilt projects.  I'm hand piecing so I took it up as the mood struck me.  I mostly stitched the pieces while I watched a TV program, or when I gathered with quilt friends.  Sometimes I sat and stitched and thought about this and that.

The thing about hand piecing is that you can do that.  You're not sitting in front of a sewing machine in your sewing room.  (Although sometimes that can be fun too.)  You can hand piece anywhere.  So time with this project was like no time at all, because while I put this quilt top together,  I was always doing something else.

Clue One  String Piecing
The photo above shows one of my string pieced sets on my lap desk.  As I finished my clues, I put the sets into zip lock bags.

Clue One Pieced and stored into zip lock bags 
Clue Three
I continued on with all the clues and then began to put all the blocks together.

I've now hand pieced all the blocks and I'm assembling the quilt top.  My plan is to put blocks together in 4 block sections, then piece these sections together for the quilt center. 

Four Block Section
When I looked at the sets as I was assembling them, I thought they were kind of dull looking but now that I've put some of the blocks together, I think it sort of sparkles. Sometimes, using your scraps works out.   Maybe this quilt will look good.  I'll wait and see.  Not too long before the entire quilt top is assembled.   I'm not very good at finishing quilts of this size.  (75" x 75")   My quilt buddies think I should hand quilt it.   Let's face it.  This may take a while

As I said,  I get distracted.  Smiley

Tuesday, December 16, 2014


Sixteen Patch Scrap Quilt 64" x  64"
My goal in life is to use up my bits of scrap fabric that I have accumulated over the years. To that end,  I created a 16 patch with the EQ7.  Each piece is 2 inches square and each block is 8 inches square.  Each  block has a variety of one color way.  For example the pink block has 10 to 12 different pinks.  So depending on your own stash of scraps, the pinks would vary as would the blues, greens, yellows, oranges, and reds.   I didn't put in a large border.  The border in this quilt is just .05 inches.

In the example above, the quilt would be 64" x 64".  Perhaps I would have a  more useful quilt if it were a bit longer.  The example below is 65" x 72".

Sixteen Patch Scrap Quilt 65" x 72" 
 I like this arrangement of blocks but as I make the blocks, I might rearrange them.  Maybe I'll come up with another border.  I kind of like the look of the tiny border.  Here's a possible plain border.

Sixteen Patch with plain border
Any opinions are welcome.  I'm leaning toward no border. Too much border would take away from the twinkle of the quilt.   The happy thing is, I don't have to decide right now.  I have a ways to go before this quilt will be finished.

I'm hand piecing using  2 inch squares from Inklingo .  If you follow this link and click on Cathi's PDF Version of the Index of Shapes (Thank you Cathi!)  It lists all the collections with 2 inch squares. I count 8 collections.  I have several.  The One inch 90 Degree Hexagon Collection (Patchwork of the Crosses) has this 2 inch square. I could use this one.  One of the things  I love so much about Inklingo is that if you have a shape collection, you can use that collection to make so many other quilts.  (Thank you Linda!)

This quilt could also be made as a little wall hanging or table topper.  If you made your squares 1 inch x 1 inch, the quilt would be about 32" x 32".  What fun that would be!  Take a look at Cathi's List for all the collections that have a 1 Inch square. I count 7 collections.

As I start this project, which will be my go to in between other projects, I'll post more about my progress.  I expect this to take some time because I'll be hand piecing the quilt and eventually hand quilting it.  For all those who prefer and can get accuracy with machine piecing, this will take a lot less time.  Inklingo is also very useful for machine piecers.  I can see you all whipping through this, string piecing it, and making short work of it.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Around the World Blog Hop

Miniature Patchwork of the Crosses

I've been invited to participate in an Around the World Blog Hop by Carol at Postcards from Panama and as promised last week, here I am to answer some questions about myself and my blog.


Well currently, I'm working on several projects at once because I can't stay focused on one project at a time.  I'm thinking that makes me unusual. Many or most of my quilt buddies actually finish the projects they start, but I find my follow through lacking.  Not that I haven't finished a great number of projects but let us just say my UFO's are still numerous.  Please visit my blog QUILT FINISHES to view some of my finished quilts.

Most recently, within the last year anyway, I've been focusing on hand piecing my quilts. I've always liked hand piecing, but found the process difficult in the preparation.  Using templates to cut and marking my sewing lines was not fun for me.  I reviewed various ways of doing what I needed to do to get to the actual piecing part like the Jinny Beyer method or using EQ (Electric Quilt Software) to print templates out on freezer paper or directly onto fabric.  I found these methods wanting.

Then I ran across Linda Franz and Inklingo and it all fell into place for me.  Now, at least for the present, I'm focused on hand piecing.  There are so many possibilities with Linda's method.   I find myself wanting to try it all and have trouble staying focused on just one.

 So here are some of the projects  I'm working on.

1. A miniature POTC (shown above).  This top was completed using Inklingo 0.5 Inch 90 Degree Hexagon Collection.  I still need to put a border on it and quilt it. 

2. A carpenters wheel in bright colors, yellows, neutrals, and whites.  I've pieced the blocks together but it still needs a border and quilting.  I'm stalled at the border because I can't decide thick border, thin border, no border.  Colors or neutrals or both.  I used Inklingo's free collection Diamond/Triangle/Square for this quilt top. 

Carpenter's Wheel

The Carpenter's Wheel is one of my first Inklingo projects. I downloaded this shape collection to see if I liked Inklingo.  Well guess what?  I loved it.  It made hand piecing a joy - and big bonus, I could use up my scraps.  Using custom printing, I could print my shapes on my small pieces of fabric.

3.  Texas Tumbler:  I put this top together using Inklingo 1.0/2.0 Inch Star Points, 2 Inch 60 Degree Diamonds, and 60 Degree 1.0 Inch Hexagons.
I named this Texas Tumbler because it combines the Texas Star with Tumbling Blocks.
Texas Tumbler
My Texas Tumbler still needs some work.  I plan to add pieces to square up the sides, add some borders and then of course quilt it.  This was also made using my scraps of fabric.  Using scraps makes me happy.  I hate throwing small pieces out.

4.  Texas StarFish.  This is just about done.  I just need to bind it.  Follow the link to see how I did it. I named this Texas StarFish because the Texas Star blocks are kaleidoscoped using fish fabric.

Texas StarFish

I'm working on a number of other items.  I try to use Inklingo for all the designs I see and like.  My Prairies Women's Group is making little wall hangings.  I've done the following two using Inklingo shape collections and converting patterns to Inklingo. These two wall quilts/table toppers are almost done, just needing binding and quilting.  They are hand pieced and will be hand quilted.

This is not all I'm working on but in defference to those who read my blog, I'll leave this long list to other posts.


This is an interesting question.  I'm csurious to discover how many Quilt Genres there are.  There are art quilts, traditional quilts, modern quilts, pieced quilts both by hand and machine, applique quilts both by hand and machine, dimensional and flat; and then there are differences in how we quilters quilt our quilts.  We have machine quilting by domestic machines and long arm machines.  We have hand quilting either big stitch or regular stitch.  There are so many varieties.  I may have left some out.  In the hand piecing category some quilters use the English Paper Piecing method and some use the hand piecing using the running stitch method.

So where am I in all this.  I think of myself as a traditional quilter.  There are still some of us left, and our numbers are growing.  Among traditional quilters, I still differ because I do everything by hand.   I hand quilt, hand piece, hand embroider, and hand applique.   I love hand applique and pretty much stuck to this for the first number of years I quilted.  I hand quilt and I don't think there are nearly as many hand quilters as machine quilters.  From what I see many quilters will piece their top and not quilt it themselves, but send it off to a long arm quilter.  I have done that too, but most of my quilts are put together and quilted by hand.   I also like to create my own patterns.  Here are two of my early works both hand appliqued and hand quilted.

Anniversary Rose
Anniversary Rose was made for my Husband upon our 10th Anniversary.  I drew the pattern out on graph paper, transferred the pattern to my background fabric and hand appliqued the pieces down.

I named this quilt Chiroptera.

From Wikipedia:
Bats are mammals of the order Chiroptera (/kˈrɒptərə/; from the Greek χείρ - cheir, "hand"[2] and πτερόν - pteron, "wing"[3]) whose forelimbs form webbed wings, making them the only mammals naturally capable of true and sustained flight.

I love bats and I think there will be more bat quilts in my future.  I created this quilt in October of 2000 from bits of scrap and pieced purchased hand died  pieces of fabric for the background.  It is hand appliqued and hand quilted.

There is a pocket for the label and I  printed a story of Chiroptera on fabric with my inkjet printer, heat set it, folded it and put it in the pocket.  The drawing on the pocket is my own. The photo of the printed story is blurry.  That's my camera and photography abilities.  The story is really clear to read.


I write and create my quilts because I can't not write and create.  Does this make sense?  There isn't a day go by that I'm not doing some quilt work or some writing.  I blog because it gives me an outlet for my thoughts and keeps a record of my quilt work.  I quilt because for me, it is a creative outlet.  Quilt work is more than something I do, it is who I am.


Not sure....  It's just there in my mind and needs to be let out. If I don't let it out, I get brain fog.

I hope you did not find this blog too long to enjoy. I can tend to be long winded.

Finally, I would like to introduce you to our next Around the World Blogger.   Her name is Jayne and she has been a quilter for over 30 years.  Jayne is a retired English teacher (semi retired), a mother, and a grandmother.  Jayne's blog came to my attention, because like me, she loves hand piecing.  Please visit Jayne's blog Jayne's Quilting Room .  Click on the link and visit her now and on Monday, December 15 when she will be writing about what she is working on and her creative process.

Bye for now.  Thanks for stopping by and come back often.  Please leave comments.  I would love to hear from you.

Sandy White

Monday, December 1, 2014

Around the World Bog Hop

I've been asked to participate in an around the world blog hop.  Carol from PostcardsFromPanama
 has tagged my blog for next week, December 15.  Visit me then and I will post about

1. What am I working on?
2. How my work differs from others of its genre?
3. Why I write/create what I do?
4. How does my writing/creating process work? 


And I will link you to other bloggers.

Please come back for more on this next Monday December 15, 2014