Little Penguin Quilts Through the Year

Little Penguin Quilts Through the Year

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

I Like Thursday #67 - February!

Hello,  February!

Something I love about this time of year is that the days are getting longer and there is more daylight to enjoy!  That always makes a big difference in my energy level and attitude.  Light equals "hope" - spring is going to come again!

But you can't take a picture of longer days!

I did snap a picture of something silly going on at our house the other day -

My hubby was trying an experiment with a pair of shoes that are a bit too tight.  He read that you could fill a plastic bag with water inside your shoe, and then freeze it.  Since water expands when it freezes, it was supposed to stretch the shoe.  Did it work?  He says no.  ;(

I think I will stick to experimenting in the sewing room!  I have enjoyed playing with a cascade of hearts this week!

I decided to make a little Valentine mini called "I Heart You" from Cluck Cluck Sew after seeing the one that Janice at Color, Creating, and Quilting is making.   It is made in a fun way - each heart overlaps the next one.  I hope to finish putting it together in the next couple of days.

Yesterday we went for a scenic drive up in the mountains, but before we even left town, we saw a group of elk hanging out in an open space by some houses!

Just hanging out, no worries, as everyone driving by stopped to take their picture!

Lots more were hanging out up in Estes Park.

And although my photo doesn't do it justice, this is a favorite view of the mountains.

Hope you are having a great week!  Don't forget to check out the other "I like Thursday" posts hosted by LeeAnna at Not Afraid of Color!

Sunday, January 28, 2018

A Slow Stitching Finish

Last week, when Kathy of Kathy's Quilts asked people to show the hoops they worked with, it reminded me that I had an embroidery project in a hoop that I hadn't picked up in awhile.

This was started back in April from a little pattern by Jenny of Elefantz, and was offered during the Splendid Sampler project.

I put a few stitches into it every now and then as the year went on and it turned out there wasn't much left to work on!  So while watching TV in the evenings this last week, I finished it. 

 A little border, and some batting, backing, and binding, and now it's hanging in my sewing room!  It measures about 8.5 inches square.

I've never done much embroidery, so it was fun to give it a try, and learn a few stitches!  Now I'll need to find another project to have ready when I'm in need of some slow stitching!

Sharing at Kathy's Quilts for Slow Sunday Stitching.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

January Blues

The only blues I've had this month have been in the sewing studio, and there have been a lot of them in there!

Early in the month, I made a few blue bow ties -

and two blue blocks for the Squared Away sampler - 

Plus a couple of blue Scrappy Sprouts blocks, just for the heck of it!

This week I finished up my light/medium blue 10 inch Tiny Rails block - 

I'm up to 7 of these, including a dark blue one.

I've also been playing some more with Sawtooth Stars, in the 6 inch size.

I might have a plan started here!

I've been enjoying this journey through the month of January!  Want more blue inspiration?  Check out all the other Rainbow Scrap Quilters for the ScrapHappy Saturday link-up at SoScrappy!  

Friday, January 26, 2018

Project Quilting 9.2 - Triangulation!

I was excited to find out what the next challenge would be for Project Quilting, and kept checking for the post at Persimmon Dreams last Sunday until it was finally up!

Triangles!  Looking around the house for color and design inspiration, I landed on a favorite mug and then pulled some scraps from my solids drawer.

I'd been wanting to do something with improv triangles, perfect for this challenge!

Concentric triangles, made log cabin style, with pieces added to each side (and strategically trimmed!), make my completed Triangular mini.  It measures 9.5 x 12.5.

I enjoy playing with the quilting design when making a small piece, so my challenge for myself was to do some triangular quilting with my walking foot.

This was fun!

This makes a fun little placemat for my favorite mug, and might work for breakfast, too!

Joining in from Loveland, Colorado, and linking up with
Sandra for TGIFF
Persimmon Dreams for Project Quilting
Cynthia for Oh Scrap!

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

I Like Thursday #66 - Every day is different!

I used to love that about my teaching career - every day truly was different!  And come to find out, retirement is like that, too, and I like every day to be a little bit different.

I liked our Saturday walk at River's Edge Natural Area.  Here was the view:

We spotted a bird that was new to us, an American Kestrel.

Mike didn't have his fancy camera, and mine doesn't zoom well enough to get a good close-up, but if you're curious here's a link to the Cornell All About Birds site that shows exactly what we were seeing.  It is a beautiful bird, North America's littlest falcon, we learned.

I liked that on Sunday it looked like this - completely different from Saturday!

Snow day!  I love a good snow day, also a leftover thing from being a teacher!  Read, sew, watch football, soup in the crockpot - the perfect day.

On Sunday, the second challenge for Project Quilting was posted.  See here for more details about it.  I had fun with the first challenge, and even won a prize just for participating!  It was definitely fun and inspiring to see what other people did for the first challenge - there is so much talent out there in the quilting world!

This week's challenge- make something with triangles!  I've been wanting to try some improv triangles, so...

I've finished my challenge piece already, but haven't taken any more photos just yet.

Last week we went to the movies again and saw "The Post."  I love Discount Day - only $5 to see the movie.

We really liked this movie, an interesting topic that was happening when I was a teenager, so I didn't pay much attention to it.  Plus I love Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep, and any movie that makes me want to come home and learn more, which we did!

One more different thing to like this week - these differently shaped taco shells.

I actually bought these kind of by accident recently.  I love crispy tacos, and needed more taco shells, but couldn't find anything else at my local grocery store that was exactly what I wanted, so I decided to try these.  Turns out, we like them!  Easy to pick up, and they hold quite a bit, too!   

Happy Thursday!  I'm looking forward to seeing what everyone else has been up to this week.  Visit LeeAnna at Not Afraid of Color to read more I Like Thursday posts!   

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Old and New

When I first started quilting, almost 20 years ago now, I made several quilts from the same pattern, Yellow Brick Road, by Atkinson Designs.  Most were given away, except for this one, which is one of the first quilts I kept for myself.

This is a really simple quilt to make - a lap size needs 12 far quarters, plus yardage for borders, backing, and binding.  The quilt above is made from fabric my quilt group dyed in a member's backyard one summer day way back when!  We had fun with that experience and I enjoyed making this quilt out of the fabric afterwards.  I added in the black yardage, and used scraps from the dyed fat quarters for the binding.  For quilting, I tied it with variegated embroidery floss.

When my oldest son asked me to make him a new quilt, I thought of this pattern, and back in December I bought 12 fat quarters of Grunge to make his quilt with.

Recently, I've had the chance to get the blocks cut and pieced for this quilt.  They go together pretty fast - you cut each fat quarter into 6.5 and 3.5 inch strips, then sew the strips together in various combinations, cut again, and sew up three different sets of blocks.

I played with a layout yesterday afternoon, and came up with this - 

It's meant to be random and has a scrappy look to it, which I really like.  It shouldn't take long to get this flimsy sewn together, and a border added.  

This pattern uses up all the fabric pretty efficiently - only a few scraps are left, and mostly because I cut wrong once or twice...(wink!)  Fortunately, there were plenty of pieces that I cut right!

Hope you are having a relaxing Sunday!  

Sharing at Quilting is More Fun than Housework for Oh Scrap!  

Friday, January 19, 2018

Just Playing!

This week, while working on a new quilt that's been requested by my son (more on that in tomorrow's post!), I also had a chance to play with a few favorite fabrics and quilt blocks.

First, I decided I wanted to make another Floral Sawtooth Star.  Last November I realized that these stars would be the perfect project for my fat quarter bundle of Blush and Bloom, so I started with this pretty star.

This week, I chose some Spring-like pink and light blue to surround another floral center.

Both of these blocks finish at 12 inches.  Then, because I want to experiment in using star blocks of different sizes in this project I made a 6 inch block with fabrics from both stars.

And in the category of "I've been wanting to try one of these..." and "while I have the blue scraps out," I cut pieces for a Scrappy Sprouts block...

and ended up making two!

Those are fun!  I think I'll keep cutting 2 1/2 inch squares for future sprouts, whenever I have a leftover chunk of fabric.  I used to have a bunch, but have mostly used them up and not replenished the bin.  Time to get back on that!  :)

Hope you had fun playing in your scraps this week!

Sharing at SoScrappy for ScrapHappy Saturday!  

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

I Like Thursday #65 - in the sewing room

Happy "I Like Thursday", friends!  I like keeping track of things I want to share for this weekly post as I go through the days.  This week it's all about some new additions to my sewing room.

I don't buy a lot of specialty rulers, but I was finally convinced that I needed the Easy Angle and Companion Angle rulers.  (Thank you, Libby and Angela!)

Those were my first HSTs made with the Easy Angle ruler, and they turned out pretty good!  (Haven't had a use for the other one yet.)  Just like with any new tool, I need to get some more practice with this ruler - my preferred method for HSTs has been drawing the diagonal line on a square to make two at a time.  This usually requires lots of trimming, which gets old fast!  Hoping I can learn to make HSTs more accurately and cut out that trimming step!

Playing with a Scrappy Sprouts block - 

I also liked finding out that I can order things from, where these rulers were both on sale, and then pick my order up in the store for free! 

Thanks also go to Karen, who posted about fusible tape to connect scrap pieces of batting - I found some of that at Joann's, too.  I have lots of bits and pieces of batting to use up.  I have zigzagged them together in the past, but was interested in trying something different.

At Costco a few weeks ago, I bought these plastic crafting totes to store some ongoing quilting projects.

I like that they are colorful and stackable!  Here is one opened up to show my Floral Sawtooth stars project stash, and one 6" star that I made this week.

Notice the sticky note with dimensions and diagrams, lol!  At least it won't get lost in some other pile!

After filling these five totes up, I realized that unfortunately, I could probably use another set of 5!  :) 

And, just in case you haven't done enough blog reading this week, I have one to recommend!

I loved this post on the blog, Cheeky Cognoscenti, (click on the blog name to get to the post) from earlier this week!  Her take on what she calls Compulsive Creative Disorder.  I think I probably fall into that category.  I love trying new things, which often turns into starting a new project! 

Hope you're having a wonderful week!  Please join us over at LeeAnna's place, Not Afraid of Color, every Thursday, for our weekly sharing of favorite things. 

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Project Quilting: Hometown Proud

Welcome to Loveland, Colorado - the Sweetheart City!

Because Loveland has wonderful views of the Rocky Mountains, specially created Valentines, and lots of public art, I knew those things would need to be represented in my first ever entry into Project Quilting.

I started with a sketch and some scraps - 

Those scraps turned into this patchwork background - grassy fields, mountains, sun, and blue sky.

A heart was needed, so I fussy cut one that I raw-edge appliqued to the background.  After a little quilting and binding, my Sweetheart City mini, measuring 10 inches square, is complete!

Loveland has been my home since 1977, and I am definitely Hometown Proud!  

Head over to Persimmon Dreams to check out the other Hometown Proud entries - they're a lot of fun!

Also sharing at Quilting is More Fun than Housework for Oh Scrap!