Before we left to go ride bikes yesterday, I was able to finish up the stitching for the final Dancing Chickens and Flying Pigs block. This one is called "Pleasures of a Peaceful Life."
Here are all the blocks I have for this quilt:
If I sew it together as the pattern shows it, I would set the blocks 4 across and 3 down, as you see them here. It makes sense since the blocks are long and narrow. The quilt will end up square, essentially. The pattern cover shows it with a border using the same off-white background fabric, and there are some embroidered cross-stitches all the way around. I'll probably do something similar, but that will be at least several months down the road. It might make a good take along project for our "Rainbirds" trip this winter.
I've reached a point in my work flow where I'm going to have to sandwich more quilts. Dream Big is the second-to-the-last of the quilts I have sandwiched for quilting. I believe sandwiching the huge pile of quilt tops will probably be my goal for August's OMG. I'm getting ahead of myself though. There's still work to be done on Dream Big.
I'm having fun with this. I'm working out from the center, first outlining the petals as I come to them, and then filling in with something inspired either by the diagram I'm working from, or else springing from my own imagination. Sometimes I just quilt a wavy line and then see what happens from there.
It's complicated by the fact that I'm having to incorporate and work around the flaming arms I quilted the day before. As I work my way outward, I'll have the canvas of the whole petal, unadorned by any previous quilting.
For this first one, I made another outline around the outer edge and then filled in with circles. Then a bunch of echoing lines.
This next one started with the "hook" in the center, and then I just quilting a few more with some arches around it. I like how this one turned out.
This is my least favorite of the ones I did yesterday. I was trying to do a fancy feather. When I had the feather portion finished, there were gaps in the middle, and so I filled in with some pebbling. It's fine, but it's less pleasing to my eye than some of the others.
On this next one, I tried making one of the motifs from the diagram around the outer edge of the petal. That worked out okay. Then I just filled in the center. This was a small area, and so there wasn't much room for getting very fancy.
For this one, I was trying to copy one of the motifs from the diagram. Again...it's fine...not exactly the look I was going for, but good enough.
For this one, I did some repeating wavy lines, and again, I was trying to work around the flaming arms from the day before.
I left the quilt on the machine, having stitched around the outer edge of the next petal. Just before sitting down here, I took it off the machine. I realized the window washer guy is coming today (trying again after he no-showed last week). My machine sits right next to a window, and I realized I probably didn't want drippy dirty window water on the quilt, so I took it off. It's a good opportunity to start from the center of a petal and work my way out. Up until now, I've been stitching around the edges and then taking off from wherever my needle ended up.
I'm hoping to get some more quilting done today, but it's also a canning day. I harvested about a half dozen more beets. I expect I have about 7 pounds now, and that should be enough for 6-7 pint jars. They have to be boiled, peeled, and then canned in boiling water with a little salt. It means getting out the pressure canner and teaching myself to use it again. It isn't hard, but I always have to read the instructions to get it set up and remember the steps for sealing the jars. Hopefully, I won't blow up the kitchen today.
I'll end by saying our bike-riding went okay yesterday, but I wouldn't say it was fun. I'm afraid the bikes may be so overloaded with injury baggage it might not ever be fun to ride them. We'll keep trying though. I was trying to accomplish some skill-building yesterday, and now I'm thinking it'll be better to just find an easy trail to ride on. The skill-building is fairly tedious, and I don't think it's particularly helpful anyway. That won't happen before next week, and so I'll have some time to get my mind right about it. We both need our attitudes adjusted where the bikes are concerned.
Okay, so onward. Today I'll be taking the first stitches on the 3rd block for the Heartland Barns quilt. I need to keep my morning moving around so I can have myself put together when the window washer guy arrives.