Monday, April 21, 2014

A Finish for Me!

 I am really pleased with the way "My Improv Quilt" turned out.   I finished  handstitching the binding down this morning (thanks for the two-colour idea Dominique)  in between cutting out lots of 2" strips for my Christmas Diamonds quilt. It measure 37 1/2" x 45 1/2". I couldn't get a decent shot of the back. Maybe another time.   I have a plan for this quilt but I can't share yet. 

 



Sunday, April 20, 2014

April Update - The Library Challenge

My commitment for the Library Challenge was 5 quilt patterns.  Two are completely done, one is waiting to be quilted, and the final two are just about to begin. You can see my choice here and my last update here

Today I am going to work on "Diamonds" by Allison Jane Smith from the book "Fresh Impressions"  I meant to start this one right after the March Update but a few pillows and quilts got in the way.  So, I am just starting to cut today.  I am going back to my original plan for this pattern. A Christmas quilt!  I had changed my mind and was going to use my Lucy's Crab Shack collection, but yesterday I decided that since I bought the pattern book to make the quilt with Christmas fabrics, then that's what I will do.  I was at a local fabric shop and saw this pattern made with Christmas fabrics and I just loved it so I bought the book and started to collect the fabrics. I can always make it with other fabrics again another time.


I am linking up with Adrienne at Chezzetcook Modern Quilts,  stop by and see how everyone is doing with their Library Challenge.  Thanks to Adrienne for starting this challenge.  It has helped me so much with getting things done.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

No more Amy B. scraps!

The Amy Butler scrappy bits blocks that I made last weekend, didn't end up being another pillow.  I made a runner for my china cabinet.  I have been meaning to do this for ages. My daughter will have to wait to get a scrappy pillow for her bed.   I just have to finish off the edge.  I did some freemotion loops and straight lines.  I still had a few strips from the AB jelly roll so I used those for the borders.  I used a leftover piece of batting and an older tone-on-tone white on the back.   Now my AB scraps, that were leftover from the great granny square quilt I made, are all used up. I really enjoyed working with these fabrics.



I also made another block for my Dear Jane project.   Jo and I have a mini-challenge between the two of us to try to make 10 Dear Jane blocks before the end of June.  Jo is working hard on her Black Bird Lane quilt. If you love applique, like I do, check out her blog to see her progress.

B-4 - Chris's Soccer Field
 If you would like to see my progress so far, check out the tab - My Dear Jane blocks - under my header picture.

I am starting a new project today...more on that later.

Hope you have time to do something quilty today!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

I'm NOT on a fabric fast!


Today was the day.  Fabric run!  I took along a friend, Janet, who was visiting from Saint John, NB.  She needed fabric to finish a project and I needed thread.  We visited Avonport Discount Fabrics and had a great time browsing and drooling and spending money.   I haven't been to Avonport since last Fall and have been anxious to get there.  I had a great time and returned home with lots of new inspiration. 


I used all my white and light Aurifil 50# thread over the winter so I need to restock.  Just bought 4 spools today so I will have a good reason to return to the fabric store 



More Lucy Crab Shack for my collection

a cute Riley Blake from 2011

another cute Riley Blake 2013

some Basic Grey to add to my collection

Not sure what this is, but very cute!

fabric in the centre is "Flower Girl" by The Pattern Basket for Henry Glass ( along with 2 fat quarters of Kona "Bahama Blue"



"Spot On Wide" by Henry Kaufman  108" wide backing

To use for a totebag for my niece

Love, love love  Sorry I only bought a fat quarter. 

Konas from the remnant bin. 
Now I need to get sewing!  I am working on binding my "Improv Quilt" tonight and that will be off my list.  My long, long  UFO list. 

Hope you had time to quilt today!

Sunday, April 13, 2014

MMQG Sew-In Day at my House

Yesterday was such fun! At my house...the April Sew-In Day for the Maritime Modern Quilt Guild.  It definitely nourishes my quilty soul.  Talking, laughing, sharing tips. helping with quilty dilemmas  and sewing....lots of sewing.  Like-minded people in the same room is always an inspiration.  A creative inspiration for me.  Check out this link to see all the goings-on.  And I know, that if you are reading this post, and you live close enough to join in, you would have an awesome time.   Quilty fun is quilty fun!   We come from Dartmouth, Halifax and Bedford and also even from Prince Edward Island.  Our outreach is far flung but we are kindred spirits. .  We are a guild whose focus is quilty fun.
I didnt get done what I had planned, I switched gears and started making another scrappy pillow. I had some Amy Butler scraps kicking around for a while and I needed to get them sewn up into something.  I think I will make a rectangular shaped pillow for my daughter.  She wants one for her bed. 
Hope you had time to do something quilty today.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

MMQG Sew-In Day

It's raining and very dark today but who cares?  It's Sew-In Day for the Maritime Modern Quilt Guild.  At my house!  What fun it is to have all my guild buddies come by and spend the day sewing and gabbing and who knows what!  It's all about the quilts, isn't it.  We are quilt nuts!   Just a short post because I have to get things ready.  No fussing, we are a very relaxed group.  Again, it's all about the quilting.  Check out the link and you can see all the quilty goodness we shared at our Show and Tell this past Thursday.  There is room for more so if you are interested please get in touch.

Here is what I will be working on today, hopefully.  I get easily sidetracked.  I want to get this little wallhanging quilted and ready to give to my Dad as he turns 87 next month.  It is a pattern by Boo Davis  called "Quilt in the Headlights" and when I saw the one that Jenn made, well I just had to make one too.  Only I didnt want it bed-sized.  So I just cut everything down to half-size and ended up with a 25 1/2" x 29 1/2" wallhanging size.  It didn't work out perfectly, but close is good enough, and actually it was a whole lot of fudging and I know it shows but my Dad won't care.  It is what it is! A modern quilt design inspired by the traditional pattern "Rail Fence". 
Hope you get time to quilt today!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Another Scrappy Cushion

I sewed up the remaining trimming bits, and made another cushion today.  Sunday morning sewing.  Love it. 
My previous two posts will show how this scrappiness came about.  This time I used the brighter coloured scraps and a bright white cotton and made enough little blocks to make a 13 inch square.   Then I bordered that with a black polka dot and a few strips of  my favourite text print  I did a free motion swirly in the outer squares and left the centre plain.  Just a little straight line stitch to block it out. I did a simple meander in the text border. I used last Aurifil #50 wt in white. top and bottom. with a 90/14 Superior Titanium Topstitch needle.  I ended up with a 16" pillow. 
For the back, I used a Riley Blake chevron in two shades of green. Very yummy!  To the overlap,  I added the selvedge from the polka dot I used on the front as an added touch. 

Hope you are spending time quilting today. 

Friday, April 4, 2014

Scrappy Cushion

I can finally say...It's seems like Spring today.  A beautiful sunny day.  Not warm but I will take it!  It's above zero.
Hope to get a walk in this afternoon.  This morning I spent time finishing up my scrappy cushion. You can read about how it all started here  It is so cute and I just love it on my new sofa.  I think I will have to make a matching table runner for the coffee table. I just realized that not all the muslin squares that I used were the same but that just adds to the charm.  Scrap-a-licious!  I added a 2" muslin border to each side of the block and then layered it with a lovely off white scrap piece of a good quality quilter's flannel.  Then I quilted straight lines, in free-motion, in the ditch and continued into the borders.  First time I tried doing the FM straight lines and I just loved it.  I will definitely be using this method in the future.  This may be a solution for quilters who find that using a walking foot when doing straight line quilting is causing puckering.  Keep your eye on where you want to go and not on the needle.   Give it a try.  See if you find a difference. 
For the back, I used a piece of muslin leftover from another project.  I took the simple route and made the back envelope style and perked it up a bit by topstitching down a cute little ribbon covered in owls, on the overlapping piece.  cute, cute, cute.

Hope you are getting some quilting done today!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Storm day scrappy fun

It was another stormy day so I decided to do something fun to take my mind off the horrible weather outside.
This bowl contains some block trimmings that I saved from the garbage at our last guild Sew-In.  You may think I am crazy to want to make use of such itty bits.
But just look at the cute little blocks I made. I still have enough to make a few more too.  The scraps were mostly triangular in shape. 

I started out by adding a scrap to each of the four corners of a 4 1/4" square of muslin.  You can use whatever size you want. I already had these squares cut and wanted to use them up. 
Make sure to check that the triangle scrap will cover the corner when pressed back.  I chainpieced one corner on 12 squares at a time. Then repeated with the three remaining corners.  The sewing went very quickly.
After sewing the corner triangles, flip it to the back and trim using the square as a guide
Then,turn the square over to the front and cut the square in half, in both directions
resulting in four cute little blocks.  Think I will make a pillow once I sew these little blocks together.
Hope you will give this a try sometime. 
I am linking up with The Needle and Thread Network.  Stop by and see what everyone is working on this week. 

Monday, March 31, 2014

My Improv Quilt

I have been thinking about trying my hand at improvisational quilting.  I started out sewing together leftover strips from another project to make a quilt back but I liked how it was starting to look and then decided to keep making improv blocks and then maybe I could up with a design. I ended up with exactly what was on my mind.  I added a Kona Ash to complete the design, leaving me lots of negative space to do some intense free motion quilting.  On the grey, I pebbled like a crazy person using up almost 6 bobbins and 3 hours of total time.  I used Gutterman #50 thread in a light grey and a Superior Titanium 80/12 topstitch needle.  The freemotion quilting of the pebbles went just great, no problem at all.  Then I switched to a gorgeous turquoise  KT608 Wonderfil Konfetti #50 thread to quilt, for the first time, a jagged sort of meandering in the coloured squares.  I got messed up a few times, I kept wanting to do spirals, but overall I really liked this stitch and once I relaxed it was quite fun to do.  Still have to do the binding and bury a few threads but couldn't wait any longer to show.  It measures 37 1/2" x 45 1/2". It doesn't have a name yet. 






 Hope you had time to do something quilty today!


Friday, March 28, 2014

Sheila's Postcard Swap

I am participating in Sheila's Postcard Swap again.  The theme this time is Spring. 
Today, I received my postcard from my swap partner Raewyn in New Zealand.  Isn't it just the cutest! One more for my collection.  I love the sheep and the stitched flowers. Thank you Raewyn. I love it! 


this is the postcard that I made and sent to Raewyn. (she has already received it so I am OK to show you) 
Thank you to Sheila for organizing such wonderful postcard swaps.  I thoroughly enjoy creating, sending and receiving these little cuties.  So nice to meet other quilters through the trading of postcards. If you think you might like to join in a swap, keep your eye open for Sheila's next one.  I know you will enjoy it.

Hope you had time for quilting today!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

What's Happening!

I haven't been in my sewing room since last Saturday.  I have been totally wrapped up with helping my son Nathaniel, move to a new house in downtown Dartmouth.  I was so glad to be housebound today with a blizzard.
RetiredHub doing the shovelling (I will do the sewing!)
  I needed a day to sew and recuperate from three days of packing, cleaning, loading and unloading.  I spent time catching up with blogs and then down to my sewing room to do some free-motion quilting.  I am still working on the pebbling on the original pattern quilt for my son's new house.  I am working on bobbin #5 right now.  It takes a lot of thread.
My BQFF Kathy B. in Saint John, N . B., sent me some cute little thread spool pin crocheted cuties as well as some pins that she made herself.  Aren't they just the cutest!  I love her artwork and how she presented the little doilies in the card. 


 
Here's my poor little non-working Featherweight with the little crocheted spool pin doily.  I love it!















I also started cutting strips for a new project.  A wallhanging for someone special. I am using up some hand-dyes that I dyed myself several years ago.  Also, a lovely sky fabric that my Mother and Sister and brought me from England.   I don't want to ruin the surprise by showing the pattern or telling who it is for but I think there may be a few who will recognize the colour palette. Can't wait to see how that Kona Kumquat looks in the design. 

The wind has died down and the snow has turned to freezing rain now.  The forecast for tomorrow is for a sunny day!

I am linking up with The Needle and Thread Network.  Stop by and see what everyone is working on this week.
Hope you had time to do something quilty today!


Sunday, March 23, 2014

Maritime Modern Quilt Guild March Sew-In

Yesterday was the March Sew-in day for the Maritime Modern Quilt Guild...and it was held at my house...in my kitchen!  What a great time we had.  Myself and four other members of our new little guild attended.  We may be small, but we are mighty!  Sewing machines were whirring, scraps and threads were flying, all the quilty talk..such wonderful inspiration.  Here is  the link to the guild's blog and you can read all about our day. Thanks to Adrienne, our president, for writing an awesome blogpost with  great photos.
As if the company and the sewing wasn't pleasure enough, here is the lovely door prize I received from Leigh Anne.   You will read about her generosity when you go to the guild's blog.  Thanks so much Leigh Anne and it was so great to spend the day with you. 
My door prize from Leigh Anne
I purchased these from Leigh Ann to go with the fat 1/4 pack (I love the chevron "L" for Linda peeking out)
I saved these little cuties (trimmings) from the garbage pail. (I know, I know) But I will use them.
   A great time was had by all and we are looking very forward to our next get-together.  We have room for more so if you are thinking about joining our little guild, please get in touch.  You will be glad you did!

The Library Project Challenge - March update

I am enjoying this challenge so much.  The idea being to challenge yourself to using patterns from books in your very own library.  I have 5 quilty projects on my challenge list and I am currently finished the first two and working on the third one. You can tell that my theme so far has been "colour" and that was a challenge I gave myself. I adore colour but never seem to be brave enough to go that extra step.   I feel a lot more comfortable with it now.  My #4 project will not be as bright as the first three though.  I had planned on doing #4 in Christmas fabrics, but that has changed now.  I have decided to use the Lucy's Crab Shack by Sweetwater.. fabric that I have been collecting for a while.


Here is my update on my challenge projects.
#1. "Slices" -  now a sewing machine cover
I



#2. "Basic Puzzle" - now a cuddle quilt on my new sofa

#3. "Hugs and Kisses" - now in flimsy state, waiting to be quilted. 


I am anxious to get started on #4,  "Diamonds" From "Fresh Impressions" by Allison Jane Smith





I am linking up with Adrienne at Chezzetcook Quilts for the monthly update. 


Thursday, March 20, 2014

Being prepared!

I don't have any grandchildren (yet) but I am always looking to find the perfect juvenile quilt to make when the time comes. I have a folder with some favourites but now I am sure  I have found it!    It is called "The Quilt of Learning" and it is the new design by Nova Scotia quilt designer, Karen Neary of SewKarenly Created.    This quilt fits all the criteria I have for a child's quilt....colourful, educational, interactive and just fun to make. It has to be fun for me to make! I am thinking Kona solids....Oh my!  Check out the amazing free motion quilting that Karen does on this quilt. If you ever get the chance to take a freemotion quilting class with Karen...DO IT!   I could never recreate this skill level but could certainly give it my own spin.   I can just imagine a child being stimulated by this quilt.  Spelling, counting, colour names.(Should a child know their Kona colour names? hmmm)  And..bonus....make a stuffed block to play with.  It can be made bigger for a "big kid bed" with the addition of borders. 
 
There is no rush for me to make this, but who knows what the future will bring.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

WIP on The Needle and Thread Network

Another Wednesday has rolled around very quickly.  I have two projects in progress that I am working on this week.  The first one is a wallhanging that I created from leftover pieces of my Puzzle quilt.  I did have to purchase some Kona Ash to finish up the design. For batting, I am using a lovely piece of Quilters Dream.    On the back I used a Riley Blake grey and white zigzag extrawide piece of backing.  I am using Guterman 50# thread in a very light grey, with a 80/12 Superior Titanium needle.  Since I felt that I wimped out with the quilting on my Puzzle quilt, I am doing intense pebbling in freemotion on this one.  It will take a while but as long as everything is going well with the quilting, I don't mind. I didn't get a pic of the quilt top before I started the quilting so this is just a sneak peek so far. Plus, it's kind of a surprise for my son.  He is moving into a new house and needs something to hang on the wall in the dining room.  I think he will just love this. 

I also started up a new project.  This is called  "Hugs and Kisses" by Jaybird Quilts.  I purchased the Lazy Angle Ruler, as suggested by the pattern, and found it made the cutting very quick and easy.   This is one of my picks for The Library Challenge QuiltAlong.  I used a Kaffe Fassett jelly roll that I have had for a long time and also some gorgeous Kona Chartreuse. I will not buy one of these KF jelly rolls again.  I love the fabric so much but working with the pinked edge strips made accuracy very difficult. And I love to be accurate! And some of the strips were very crooked.
 I plan on quilting feathers in the diamonds. 

I plan on sewing up these blocks into a top on Saturday.  That is when the next Sew-in for the Maritime Modern Quilt Guild will take place.  For this sew-in, I will host the members/guests at my home.  I am so looking forward to having a great time .  Please get in touch if you would like to attend.  New members/guests are very, very welcome. 

I am linking up with The Needle and Thread Network.  Drop by and check out what everyone is doing this week.

Hope you get some quilting done today!