Friday, June 18, 2021

Can I Get A Whoop Whoop? A New T-Shirt Quilt for a Special Person...


Hi, all!

It's Friday!  And a long-anticipated Friday for me, because today is the beginning of vacation!  Whoop whoop whoop!!!  But before I get totally distracted by sunshine, sand and the Gulf of Mexico, let's do a little whooping together.  Ready?  Let's go!


Meet Adeline!  Adeline was recently diagnosed with a rare form of cancer, and her mom wanted a quilt made with t-shirts with notes of encouragement donated by her friends and family.  

When she came to me, I agreed to make the quilt for her.  It is an honor to be part of those cheering on Adeline!

Because of the wide variety of shirts and unusual sizes, there was really no option but to make this a puzzle style quilt.

These blocks are so special!  

There's lots of texture in this quilt, such as the mermaid sequins shirts...

And the pink fringe!  

The donut print was actually a pair of leggings with a baby onesie - such a creative idea!

There's lots of bright, cheerful colors and loving sentiments, and plenty of empty filler pieces for others to add notes of encouragement...

...and even a Tennessee Vol shirt from relatives in Knoxville.

When I asked her mother what Adeline's favorite color was for the back, she said black - an unusual choice for a 7-year old, but do-able!  I found some soft and silky black minky for the back, and a black, grey and white stripe for the binding.

Here's the label her mom asked me to put on the quilt - you can see it at the center top of the quilt.  I found some pieces of a Mary Engelbreit print to frame it with, full of encouraging little notes itself.

Say a prayer for Adeline when you think of it, or send good vibes her way if that's more your style.  However we do it, let's lift up Adeline and her family as they go through a difficult time.  
Quilters are good at that!


And now it's your turn!

What's got you whooping it up this week?

What's making you do a little happy dance?

Share! We want to dance right along with you,

And it's always more fun to dance with friends!

The party will stay open until Sunday midnight.

Hope to see you there!



Wednesday, June 16, 2021

I May Have A Scrap Problem... But These Will Help!


Hi, all!

It's been a while since I've had the time (or the energy!) to post on a Wednesday, but don't think that means I have given up on my scraps!  Now that Hands2Help is in the books for this year, I should have more time to work on them.

And this week I'm very pleased to share something really special!  A while back I was contacted by the wonderful people at Felicia's World about their paper piecing templates. They asked if I would be willing to give them a try and post about it on my blog.  Now, if you've followed me for long you'll know that I have never really been able to wrap my head around the concept of paper piecing - but I decided that since I could make log cabin blocks by traditional piecing, I should be able to manage paper piecing.  So I said yes, and they sent me some samples to try!

After cutting out my vacation project, I took the leftover fabrics and cut them into 1.5" strips, then added some white strips and solid teal 2" squares.  

The instructions are clearly printed on the cover of the pad of templates, which was helpful!  I took my handy glue stick and put a dab on the center square, then placed a teal square right on top.  With that stuck on, it went pretty quickly!  For the first few blocks I made, I marked which ones were to have white strips (don't ask me how I know that might be a problem...) but after I had made three or four, they went together pretty easily!  

Stitching on the lines is easier than you might think!  But it's important to remember to use a shorter stitch - that makes it easier to take the papers off after the blocks are finished.

And as with all quilt blocks, squaring up is important!  It's easy to align your ruler with the dotted lines on the template that indicate the outer edges.

Et voila!  Look how pretty and perfect all those seams are!  I will say that paper piecing these blocks makes it easier to get a beautiful square block, even with narrow pieces.

And once the blocks are finished, it's time to play with how to lay them out!  This is just one of the designs I considered using for my blocks.

Once the design was decided on and the piecing done, it was time for quilting!  I decided to use a simple cross-hatch design that I marked on the piece with my hera marker.

And look! I may not have a summer quilt for my bed yet, but I've got a summer pillow!  (And hopefully after vacation I'll have a summer quilt top ready for quilting, too!)  I do love the colors in this piece - so light and cheerful.  The fabrics are a mix of Kate Spain fabrics from several different collections, and are the same that I will be using in my quilt top.

Be sure to pop over to Felicia's World and check out her line of paper piecing templates!  She's also got some great videos that will actually show you how to do it (if you're paper piecing challenged, like I was) and some really good tips, too.  And I can guarantee you that while the first few may be challenging, they DO get easier!  And they're a great way to use up some of those skinny scraps (and a little addictive, too).



Monday, June 14, 2021

Make-A-List Monday - Getting Ready For Vacay!

Hi, all!

I love Mondays - and especially the Monday of the week before vacation!  It will be a super busy week as I get everything ready, but the anticipation makes it all worth it.  

But first, let's see what happened with last week's list....

1.  Finish assembling the t-shirt quilt top.
2.  Quilt and bind the t-shirt quilt.
Done!  I'll be delivering the quilt tomorrow, just in time for the little girl's treatments which begin Friday morning.  I'll share more pictures on Friday with a bit of the story...

3.  Divvy up the thank you gifts for Hands2Help, and then contact the sponsors who will be shipping directly with contact information for the recipients.
4.  Package up all the rest and get them in the mail!
I am overjoyed to say that Hands2Help 2021 is all. wrapped. up!  All the packages have been mailed, all the sponsors who were mailing directly have been connected with their recipients, and an email with a special gift has gone out to all those who finished the Challenge.  If you participated and haven't received the email, check your spam folder - the email was sent to a large number of blind copies and that sometimes causes them to be bounced.  
If you still can't find it, email me directly at 
salliesue57 (at) gmail (dot) com.

And I did get a few other things done, too!  I've been working on a special project for Scrappy Wednesday, and I made some headway on it this week.  I'll be sharing more on Wednesday....

And today I did something I've been considering for quite a while - I moved around some of the furniture in my studio!  It's just a start, there's much more to be done and the rest of the room looks like a bomb went off, but I think I'm going to like it.  Maybe I'll get Lilli to help me with the rest of it!  

And now, here's what I'll be doing this week...

1.  Pack up my sewing machine for vacation - she deserves a little fun in the sun, too!

2.  Organize everything we need to take with us.

3.  Spend a fun morning with the munchkins.

4.  Write two blogposts and schedule them in advance.

It's a short list, but it's also a short week with a lot to do!  And unfortunately, my brain is already at the beach - if I didn't have my lists, I'd be in trouble!  

So now, the only thing I need to know is - - - what are YOU working on this week?



Friday, June 11, 2021

Can I Get A Whoop Whoop? Summer Sunshine!


Hi, all!

Hooray, it's Friday!  And we all know what that means - it's time for us to get our whoop whoop on!  Are you ready?  Let's go!


A couple of weeks ago, I finished a quilt!  But because other things were going on (H2H, maybe?) I didn't have a chance to really share it with you.  But tonight as I sit under this lovely summer weight quilt I decided it was time to show it off!

I made this as part of an Instagram quilt-along held by These Clever Hands (@thesecleverhands) using her pattern Me Sew Happy.

This beautiful quilt used so many of my favorite bright scraps!  And truly scraps - I dug through the pieces I had already cut that were the right size, then hit the scrap bins for the other pieces I needed.  

I found pieces in my scrap bin that I didn't remember I had - like a square from the backing of the very first ministry quilt we made, pieces from clothing and quilts I've made for my grandkids, bits and bobs from other quilts that I remembered as I put this one together.  It was quite a walk down memory lane!

When I got ready to quilt it - on the spur of the moment - I wondered if I had anything appropriate to back it in my stash.  I went to look and found the perfect fabric - but is there enough?  YES!  There was just the right amount for the back of the quilt.  Hooray!

Then after quilting I looked at it and thought, "Wow, a striped rainbow binding would be perfect for this quilt!"  Went to check in the stash, and amazingly I found just the right binding fabric - and just the right amount of it for this quilt!  I must have been living right!

And one last shot, just because it's an awfully pretty quilt!  Oh, one more thing - I tried a silk blend batt for this quilt and I really like it!  It felt like a cotton batt while I was quilting it, but after washing, it has a beautiful soft drape and it's very light.  I definitely would use it again in summer weight quilts.

And in other news....

...this represents two good days of work by my granddaughter Lilli and me!  Five bags full of H2H thank you gifts are ready to go to the post office!  I guess I know where I'll be spending some quality time now...

So - - - can I get a whoop whoop?


And now it's your turn!

What's got you whooping it up this week?

What's making you do a little happy dance?

Share!  We want to dance right along with you,

And it's always more fun to dance with friends!

The party will stay open until Sunday midnight.

Hope to see you there!



Monday, June 7, 2021

Make-a-List Monday - It's Gonna Be A Busy Week!


Hi, all!

Mondays are so much fun, aren't they?  The fresh start to a brand new week, all full of potential!  Who knows where the week will take you? Monday is my day to take care of some weekly chores, like paying bills, doing laundry, and grocery shopping. That way the rest of the week is free for other things!  

And here's what I did with that "free" time last week...

1.  Meet with a woman about a quilt for a little girl with cancer.
Done!  Such a sad story - a 7-year old diagnosed with cancer, and getting ready to begin treatments in a few weeks.  Her mom wants a quilt for her to wrap up in and feel encouraged by during her treatments.

2.  Get as much done as humanly possible on that quilt this week!
Done!  Lilli and I laid out the quilt and graphed it out on paper, then I started making the individual blocks.  Once those were done, I assembled the sections, and you can see them all laid out here.  I still need to finish assembling the top, but I'm pleased to have gotten this far!

3.  Work on a special blogpost for Scrappy Wednesdays.
Started!  I've gotten this far on this project - I still need to finish off this strip of blocks with a setting but other things have to take precedence this week, probably.

4.  Keep up with the counts for Hands2Help as people link up their beautiful quilts this week!
Done, and WOW!  What a great final number...

...and the count actually has increased since I created this graphic, and is now 1,044! That's a new record, all thanks to an amazing group of quilters!

I also took a little time to flex my own baking muscles (not too much, it's just a no-knead bread!) by making this lovely thing!

This was my first foray into really experimenting with the basic no-knead bread recipe, and I added sugar and cinnamon into the basic dough in the first mix.  Then the next morning, I turned it out onto a floured board and patted it into a rectangle, then topped it with a mix of cinnamon and brown sugar.  I rolled it up, tucked the ends underneath it, and put it in a preheated dutch oven to cook.  Fresh hot cinnamon toast bread for breakfast!

And I finally got a picture of the house with the solar floodlights!  The house has wired lights for the front, but they are controlled by a switch outside, or via remote which we can't figure out how to make work - so this was our solution!  I think I paid about $15 each for the solar lights, and they work great, even on days that don't have too much sun.  I don't have to turn them on - they come on at dusk and run until they run out of power.  This was taken at ten at night, so any time after this is just extra!

Enough about last week - here's what's on tap for this week!

1.  Finish assembling the t-shirt quilt top.

2.  Quilt and bind the t-shirt quilt.

3.  Divvy up the thank you gifts for Hands2Help, and then contact the sponsors who will be shipping directly with contact information for the recipients.

4.  Package up all the rest and get them in the mail!

Lilli and her organizational skills are sure to come in handy with the last two items - she's a hard worker!  I've been waiting for years for her to get old enough to help.  It's also good for her to see what's involved in a big project like this.  I'm hoping she can help me come up with some new ideas that make it run more smoothly!

So that's what I'll be doing this week, and now my only question is - - - what are YOU working on this week?



Sunday, June 6, 2021

Hands2Help 2021 Is In The Books!!


Hi, all!

We've made it!  Thirteen weeks ago, the Hands2Help Comfort Quilt Challenge 2021 began, and since that time, an amazing effort has been going on to spread comfort across the world!  By the numbers, quilters from 45 U.S. states, four Canadian provinces, and one Australian territory participated.  Isn't that incredible?  And here's another number...

195 fabulous quilters completed
this year's Challenge!!!

But that's not the best number from this year...

Because you all set a new record!!!

That's right!!!  This year you all made and donated 1,034 quilts, 
the largest number of quilts ever donated through Hands2Help in one year!!!  

You. Are. Amazing!!!

And now for an update: those numbers are light!  197 participants and 1044 quilts!!!


Can you tell I'm a little excited?  I was hoping we might hit 1000 this year, but as I started to total up quilts as they came in earlier this week it looked like we would come up just a little short.  You can imagine my happy dance when the numbers ticked over that magic number - and then kept rising!

And a funny story - this morning when I had breakfast with the grandkids, I asked Lilli to guess how many quilts had been donated through the Challenge.  She thought about it for a minute and said, "Three hundred!"  I said, "Nope.  1034."  Her response?  "HOLY COW!!!""  My thoughts exactly!

So what happens now?  Well, for those of you who already have your quilts shipped off, you get to sit back and relax.  Those who still need to ship, you have your task in front of you!  And me?  Well, Lilli and I will be getting to work over the next two weeks divvying up thank you goodies and getting them packed up for shipping, and contacting sponsors who will be shipping directly with contact info.  Hang tight, y'all - everyone gets a little thank you for participating in the Challenge!   You will be getting some happy mail from me, either by email or snail mail, in the next two or three weeks if my luck holds - I really want to get it all done by vacation!  NOTE:  If for some reason your address has changed since the Challenge started, be sure to email me directly at salliesue57 (at) gmail (dot) com right away and let me know!


And now, from the bottom of my heart, I say thank you!  
You are the heartbeat of the Challenge, 
the reason it happens every year.  
You bring joy and comfort to so many people 
across the world, and change lives for the better.  
Never underestimate the power of a quilt!  
I wish I could make each and every one of you a quilt - 
you are MY Hometown Heroes!   



Friday, June 4, 2021

Can I Get A Whoop Whoop? MORE Quilts for Hands2Help!!

 Hi, all!

Friday has finally rolled around once again, and we all know what that means - it's time for us to get our whoop whoop on!  It's been a busy week around here, and my inbox has been flooded with beautiful quilts being shipped all over the country for Hands2Help!  So today I'm going to share the ones that have come in since Tuesday so we can all give those non-blogging participants a huge WHOOP WHOOP!  Let's get started!


Adele D. sent these quilts off to Covered in Love, Little Lambs, 
and Quilty Hugs!

Angie N. made this joyful quilt for Little Lambs!

Britt P. made this beauty for Quilty Hugs

Erin D. gave these quilts to her Hometown Heroes!

Jeanne S. sent this quilt and eleven more to a local charity!

Karen A. also donated to a local charity.

Londa B. donated to Quilty Hugs and her Hometown Hero!

Mary O. sent her quilts to Covered in Love and Quilty Hugs!

Peggy P. sent these beautiful quilts to Victoria Quilts Canada!

Ruth S. made these two for Little Lambs of Utah!

Debbie G. just finished this one for Little Lambs!

Cindy B. made this cute little elephant for Little Lambs!

Terry D. made the quilt on the left for Little Lambs and the other 
is for her Hometown Hero!

Here's Kathy C.'s contribution, for Hometown Heroes and Little Lambs!

Ila M. made this beautiful quilt for her Hometown Hero!

Jan S. chose to donate her quilts locally!

Sue T. sent hers to Little Lambs and Quilty Hugs!

And Terri L. sent these two to Victoria Quilts Canada!

Aren't these amazing?  
So many fabulous quilts from the quilting community
spreading so much comfort!!  

So let's hear it for ALL the H2H quilters - 

A HUGE whoop whoop!!

And be sure to come back on Sunday for the final count....

It's gonna be good!!


And now it's your turn!

What's got you whooping it up this week?

What's making you do a great big happy dance?

Share!  We want to dance right along with you,

And it's always more fun to dance with friends!

The party will stay open until Sunday midnight.

Hope to see you there!