More Farmers wife

I missed having a finished project to post on Friday.  I did bind the Splash quilt, but most of my week was spent making blocks for Allietare.  Pretty dull pictures of that.  I think that the quilt is going to turn out “graphic”, as there are only 90 degree angles in it so far. I will persevere though.  I wasn’t that crazy about the Easy Street mystery, but it turned out pretty.

IMG_0604 Here it is early Monday morning and I still have not made last weeks Farmers Wife blocks.  Going to do them now.  Well that took longer than I thought it would.  The first block, Em has 88 pieces.  It was easy to cut all of them, but sewing them all together took a while.  Doris was a breeze compared to Em.  The colors are a bit faded in these pictures, they are a bit more saturated.

I’m linking up with Judy at Patchwork Times for design wall Monday.

Thanks for stopping by!



Design Wall Monday

My design wall is empty this morning.  I took down all the Farmers Wife blocks last night.  There were too many up there, and they kept peeling off with gravity.  Now they live in a basket near their fabric source pile.  The two blocks above are 27 and 28, lots of small pieces.  Keep in mind that they are only 6 ½ inches square.  Foundation paper piecing is the only way for me to keep them crisp looking and the points matching.  There are some in the QAL that are english paper piecing with templates, too fiddly for me.  The thought of trying piecing a one inch half square triangle by hand makes me wince.

This week was a piecing week for me.  I finished clue 3 for Allietare, simple 4 patches.  I also made about 250 flying geese, eight small blocks and 2 larger ones for the CoxComb quilt.  I had signed up for a FAL (finish along) for this quilt, but I doesn’t look like I’m going to be able to finish by January.  Its a block of the month, and I still have two more months to get from the shop.  It will be a February finish then.

Thanks for reading.  I’m Linking up with Judy at Patchwork Times for Design Wall Monday today.

Singer 404


This is my Singer 404, he’s vintage, and still sews a mean straight stitch, but sadly, he’s not the original machine I learned to sew on.  That 404 was purchased in 1963 used, from a dealer who had gotten it back from the original buyer for some reason (non-payment?).  My Grandmother bought it, she had a 501 already, for my Mom.   It helped to make dresses/clothes, pillows, drapes/curtains and was even used to make a header for the interior of a car.  It had the drop-in folding table and zig-zag button hole attachment, and a cover.  In the 70’s she taught me to use it, I was a pedal to the medal sew-ist then too.  I remember zooming along and flipping the stitch regular into reverse mode and the machine would smoothly reverse and just keep going.  In the early 80’s I got a Kenmore machine that was a bit fancier and the Singer got moved to a closet at my Moms house.  I moved to California, and kept on sewing, with newer machines and learned skills.

About ten years ago, I asked my Mom if she still had her Singer 404 and if I could have it.  She no longer sews much, and I think she has a Kenmore that she uses for basic mending/hemming.  Sadly she told me the 404 had been put out on the curb for the the garbage by a friend in an attempt to help clean out some junk in storage.   My Moms friend said she thought it was just an old thing that no one would want anyway.  That same day someone had driven by, seen it out there on the curb, and took it before the trash man.  I suppose I am thankful it didn’t go to the land fill, and I hope that someone is still using it and enjoying it.

My 404 was found on eBay.  It came to me covered in grime and cigarette tar. It had a few dings in the paint, and there were a few minor parts missing, like the wheel for bobbin winding.  I cleaned and polished it, oiled it and greased it, even took it to my machine service guy, where he gave it a tune up and checked the wiring and such.  I found a few feet for sale, and replaced the missing pieces.  My mom sent me the zig zag attachment, which for some reason didn’t get tossed on that fateful day.  I have used it to make a quilt or two, mend some things that I thought too tough for my Bernina, it just seems like an old friend.  Small compared to todays machines, solid though, and even if it is a bland looking tan with no fancy buttons or lights, I enjoy using it.

Linking up with Quiltville’s Quips and Snips!! today.  I realize that it isn’t required for entering the DVD giveaway, but I wanted to tell my vintage machine’s story.

Design wall Monday

Not too much going on in the sewing room this past weekend.  I feel like I should be doing some holiday sewing or something.  I did complete my two Farmers wife blocks.  The Daffodil came out backwards, I didn’t realize it until I was putting the three final pieces together.  It doesn’t look so strange when its set on point though.

I competed step two for the Allietere mystery.  Pretty boring pictures there, Bonnie is calling them Santa hats, they sort of do look like them.  Funny that people are speculating what the blocks will look like already.  Personally, I think these pieces are for the border, as she likes to mix up the clues a bit.  I also spent some time making more flying geese for the Coxcomb medallion quilt.  I’d really like to finish that quilt soon.  Its been dragging on, its a 12 month BOM, but really snoozing on this one.

I did get to spend an hour or so quilting the Moda Building blocks quilt.  I will get a photo or two for the next entry here.

Linking up with Judy at Patchwork times for design wall Monday.


Make it fit

Or maybe I should say make it TO fit.  I finished the borders on my Storm at Sea quilt.  There probably is an easier way, but I managed to make it come out right.  First I chose a border, thinking that if I used all the same sized blocks, it could be made to fit the length and width of my rectangular top.  So I measured and made the first side border and attached it to a short side.  Made up the next, a long side, to see if it would fit, according to my faulty measurements it should have.  Nope.  Too short.  Figured out that adding a 1 and 1/8th inch red strip would make it fit.  I then took borders off and added strip, and resewed the pieced borders on, still not fitting.  Decided to add corner blocks, still not helping much, the long sides were short by about 1 1/4 inch in length.  So I decided to split the long side into two equal lengths, removing one section of the chain block and make up a different block for its center.  I paper pieced two Square in a Square blocks that were 4 ½ by 5 inches. Yay! Improv piecing at its best.


I probably should have used EQ7 to figure out all this, certainly would have been easier and a whole lot less un-sewing involved.  I have it installed on an old Windows XP computer, but since I got my MacBook, I just have a hard time using a PC.  I know that there are programs to run EQ on macs, I had one, but it always crashed and the control commands were wonky.  I just can’t bring my self to buy the mac version either, as I already bought the program once.   Logical, I know.

Here are a few pictures of the Moda Building blocks quilt.  Its coming along.

IMG_1243 IMG_1244 IMG_1242

Linking up with Sarah at for Can I get a Whoop Whoop Friday and Crazy Mom quilts Finish it up Friday this week.