Saturday, June 30, 2012

Sometimes sewing is not glamorous...

Thrift store towel.  One package of wide elastic.  Scissors.  Sewing machine.  Great will to get 'er done.

Upcycled mop cover.  Two of them in fact.  Happy Husband.  Happy mop.  Happy me.

A thing of beauty.  Happy weekend.

Friday, June 29, 2012

You know you are ready for summer when...

Look at all the crab apples!
A few days ago I lost one of the backs to the earrings I wear all the time.  The discovery that the back was missing prompted a massive search that involved looking under the bed, in the couch cushions under furniture and well, you get the picture.  Husband was called into action.  He looked too.  No earring back.  This morning, while cleaning my desk at school, I happened to realize that I was cheerfully wearing two earring backs on one stud earring.  I had been doing this for several days.  Obviously summer vacation is coming none to soon!

Happy long weekend, Canadians!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Work In Progress Wednesday!

I have been making more and more cross string blocks but the month has been so busy with the end of school almost upon us that I have not come anywhere near the number I need to complete this one!  It is officially a work in progress.

I have a this mini with spools on the go too and then I have my Stash mini sandwiched and ready for quilting.

And that is it.  I am really pondering my next quilt to be but I will poke around and wait to be inspired

I did start and finish a pillow this week so at least I can claim one finish but I have been SO busy!  Last day at school with kids tomorrow and then we are in wind down mode at school.  I can see the finish line!

Linking up at Work in Progress Wednesday!  Vancouver's own Felicity is guest hosting!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Let's Get Acquainted Blog Hop...

Plum and June

Pop on over to visit Beth at Plum and June.  Beth is the host of the Let's Get Acquainted Blog Hop and today is her turn!  Don't forget to visit Svetlana too!  Have a look at Beth's blog to see the list of events and also the guest posts with tips for new bloggers.  Thanks, Beth for organizing this fun event!

    June 26
    Svetlana from Sotak Handmade
    Beth from Plum and June (my turn!)
June 28
    Julie from Jolie Maxtin
    Lori from Adventures in Fabric

Monday, June 25, 2012

A pillow gift...

I made a pillow yesterday for a year end gift for my lovely secretary.  She is just a wonderful lady.  Very feminine and a grandmother to a great many lucky grandchildren.  I used a charm pack of April Cornell's Aviary from years ago.  Soft and pretty.  I made a disappearing nine patch block for the front in some of the blues and framed it up.  I used a variety of quilting on it.  The blue disappearing nine patch was treated to a meandering small loop free motion in Aurifil 50 wt in Bluet.  The frame got some straight lines and I heavily quilted straight lines on the cream on cream on half of the back. I used Auriful 50 wt in an off white for that.   I used some of the pink charms on the back in a straight forward patchwork.  That got Straight lines in cream on either side of the seam lines.

I found some pretty vintage buttons for the back and used some scraps of something or other for the flap with the buttonholes.  I used batting on both the front and the back to give the pillow a nice structure.  It finishes at 20" square and I used one of my thrifted pillow forms from the weekend.  I think it will suit!

A pretty pillow for a lovely lady.  Linking up with Sew Modern Monday and Fabric Tuesday at Quilt Story.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Design Wall....

I decided to use some of my very precious Flea Market Fancy, including some of my original FMF to make a mini quilt to go near my wall of fabric.  I also have a mini going on with some spools blocks but this came to me and I just had to go for it.  I took some strips of some of the FMF and stitched them together and then got cracking with some letters.  I used my new pattern from Elizabeth Hartman.  So much fun!  The letters are paper pieced using freezer paper.   I cut a few of the pieces for the A on the bias and it adds a certain "je ne sais quoi."  I like it!  I just cannot decide if I am going to hand quilt it or machine.  Hmmmmm.  That is why I let it sit and stew all day long.  I have the binding already to go and it is sandwiched too but...  Thinking time required!

oriental poppy in front of the barn
Have a lovely evening.  Linking up with Judy's Design Wall Monday!

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Flea Market Finds in a thunderstorm

The skies are darkening as we speak.  We are under an extreme thunderstorm advisory.  EEK!  

(5 hours later and we finally have the power back on!)  We did have a weather event.  Yoiks!  Husband was in the middle of making bread so you can imagine what happened with that.  We have some very strange looking buns!  With all that going on, I still have some little treasures to share.  I am a huge fan of Little Golden Books.  I still have several of my own from childhood.  Of course, they are veritable antiques now!  These two have been added to the shelf.  

Some fabric found its way home too, including some pillow ticking on the right.  The fabric on the left is decor weight and will be good for bags.  I also found 3 great pillow forms but they take a boring photo!

When we were at the veggie store this morning, I spied a garage sale sign.  Husband usually tries to distract me so I don't notice such signs but I had my garage sale spotting radar turned on full force.  I did find this lovely vintage sheet in green!  Green is a hard to come by colour!

Lady's Mantle in the garden this morning

Have a lovely weekend!  Linking up with Sophie's Flea Market Finds.  Do stop by and see all the fun finds!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

In my hot little hands!

Oh man!  In my hot little hands.  All 61 pages of it.  Elizabeth Hartman's latest pattern.  Making me happy.  And it is on sale until the end of the weekend.  Letters in all different sizes.  I will be able to say all sorts of things now.  In fabric that is!

in the shady garden

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

On a Wednesday...

Today the sun was shining.  It was lovely to see it.  The energy at school was so completely different with so many happy children bouncing around with smiling, shiny faces.  You know it is the end of the school year when a countdown of days left appears in the staff room. 

I am without significant progress on my quilting works in progress.   The biggest work in progress was folding and filling my new awesome fabric shelves. And this is when I noticed a definite lack of orange in my stash.  I guess I am not drawn to orange.  But when I stopped in at my fabulous local quilt shop on the weekend, I found a stack with a bunch of Terrain for an amazing steal of a deal.  A whole bunch of half metre cuts all in a nice stack.  And the colours look pretty nice with the gorgeous peony that I took a picture of a few moments ago!

I am also still working away on the cross string blocks.

And a mini for the wall near the wall of fabric shelves.  I am also looking for a new quilt pattern to inspire me and help me with my lagging quilting mojo.   I think it is the time of the year and being SO busy at school.  With that said, Elizabeth Hartman is releasing a very cool pattern tomorrow that I am most excited about!!!

The blueberries are loaded but still quite green.  They are starting to plump up though!  Before you know it we will be picking endless berries!!!

Have a lovely Wednesday and Happy Summer!  Linking up with Work in Progress Wednesday!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Monday, June 18, 2012

Design Wall Monday

Well.  I put together a new blog header on the weekend using PicMonkey.  I have to say that it is easy to use and much fun.  Other than that, since most of Saturday was spent organizing fabric on the new wall of shelves, I did spend a little bit of time working on a mini quilt or two.  The end wall above the step stool is screaming for a mini quilt.  I put the block together and thought, mmm, I don't know.  More thinking on that one required and then I thought... SPOOLS!

So then I started making some spool blocks which are making me much happier.  I think that might be fun on that wall.  More blocks to make and it may have to wait for the weekend because I have a super busy week at school.  Only 8 more school days left!!!!!  The year has gone so quickly.

Linking up with Judy's Design Wall Monday!  Check out what other people are up to!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Wall of Fabric! Sunday Stash.

I filled my wonderful wall of shelves.  It was so much fun.  I folded fabric for hours.  I had to make so many important decisions.  Like... should this go on that shelf or this shelf.  Sigh.  Brushed cotton flannelette is on the far left and vintage sheets come next.  It was a bit difficult to get a great photo of the whole shebang as the wall of shelves is in a area between the downstairs bathroom and the downstairs living room.  The opposite wall has floor to ceiling storage cupboards.  I must confess I have other sewing stuff in those cupboards but not the stash.  I am over the moon excited to have all my fabric except my scraps in this wall. It makes life so much happier when it is all in one place.  I found fabric that I had forgotten about.  Oops.  I also noticed that I have very little orange in my collection.

Did you notice that I have a step stool?  To reach the top shelves.  OH.  There is still room for more fabric.  Don't worry!  Husband keeps threatening to dig out the kid's Fisher Price cash register for me so I can play fabric store in a big way.  Funny.

Wall of fabric.  Thank you,  Husband.  It makes me so happy.  Happy Father's Day!
Yep, flea market fancy including some orginal

Pure fabric heaven

Just a few vintage sheets and a bit of flannelette

MMM yummy
In progress, me playing with fabric

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Flea Market Finds on a Saturday and the rain continues!!!

Well.  I did go to a garage sale.  Dropped Husband off at home and zoomed around the corner and up the road.  The rain was POURING down but I toodled around and found NOTHING!  Such a disappointment!!!

Earlier though, at the thrift store, I found some wooden Coats thread spools.  The big spools too!  And they were cheap.  50 cents for the pair.  The zippers came home too along with a really lovely cross weave cotton.  Kind of a boring colour but neutrals are always handy.   But I was really delighted to find this wee vintage doll plate for the grand sum of 25 cents.  Cute!  I am happy to report that I have taken 3 large boxes of STUFF to the thrift store over the last two weekends and have another box ready to go as we speak.  I love handing off giant boxes of STUFF!!!!  I think that I am definitely in the black with thrift store finds lately as more stuff is being donated than is finding its way home!

I spent the day filling up my fabric shelves and I cannot wait to show them off.  Seriously makes me so happy  to play with all my fabric.  And it all fits.  Happy dance!!!!!!

Linking up with Sophie's Flea Market Finds.  Check out all the other lovely treasures that have found their way home this week!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

I have to say...

 I let out a giant squeal yesterday when I read an email from my lovely bloggy friend, Jan-Maree.  Jan-Maree let me know that the Wedding Quilt appeared on the Aurifil Thread's Facebook page on Monday last.  Good grief!  It took me a bit to find it.  I had to find Monday, then scroll over to find it.  And there it was!!!!!  Who knew?

Off to quilt guild this evening.  I have my bag all packed with 2 quilts to show, fat quarters to swap, draw prize to donate and goodies to gobble.  Can't forget my name tag!

I played with a patchwork wheel block on the weekend.  In pink.  Love the block but need to play with the pink a bit.  I like to make a test block and live with it for a bit.  I think I will alternate the pinks where I have used the same pink solid. I also have not got enough variety in the pink prints in this test block.   Hmmmm.  More thinking.  Hmmm. It screams pink, doesn't it????

Happy Thursday.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Work in Progress Wednesday...

Well, it is Wednesday.  I have made more cross string blocks and they no longer fit on the design wall so I am storing the extra blocks in a basket.  I think I have about 40 or so blocks and I need a lot more.  Super scrappy and wonderful!

I have been been sorting and folding all my vintage sheets too.  I needed to really have a look at all of them in preparation for my awesome new shelves.  I am hoping to have all this stuff living in one happy place.

And I finally made a name tag so that I am no longer nameless at the Fraser Valley Modern Quilt Guild meeting which meets tomorrow!!!!  So exciting!  I wanted my name tag to look like a chalk board.  Yep.  It is the teacher in me popping out.  So much fun!  Just a little free motion writing with a couple doodle flowers.  

Our garden is a work in progress too.  The white roses are starting to open.  We have had so much rain.  And I forgot to mention...  a great BIG BLACK BEAR has been visiting!  Not happy.  He ate a full bird feeder full of sunflower seeds the other night.  Harumph!

Linking up with Lee at Freshly Pieced for Work in Progress Wednesday!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Extreme Quilting...

What does it look like when a non-quilty person, decides to make a quilt block for his sister, the bride?  This is Daughter's special someone having a go at quilting.  Have a look...

Measure twice, cut once!  Look at that cutting tool?  Rotary cutters are for wimps!  Kitchen cutting boards?  Why not?

 Press those seams open!

 Such concentration!!!!!

Finished!  Love the fish!  Extreme quilting at its best!  And this block is part of the wedding quilt.  Pretty sweet!

Monday, June 11, 2012

The Wedding Quilt Block Tutorial

I thought it might be fun to have a really, really basic quilt block tutorial for "The Wedding Quilt."  I can now say that this worked really, really well for the bride and groom.  Many blocks were made by beginning or non-quilty people and it all turned out great!  Tomorrow, I am going to post some great extreme quilting photos of how non-quilty people tackled this!  Those photos are inspiring!!!!

Quilt blocks:
Some Basic Quilt Construction Info for Non-Quilters or Beginning Quilters:

11)  In order for the quilt blocks to finish at roughly the same size, it is important that you try to have as close to a quarter inch seam as possible on all of the seams in the quilt block.  A quarter inch seam is roughly a little less than your basic pressure foot on your sewing machine.  Try a small seam, measure it to see, and try your best to get a quarter inch seam.  You can do it!

   2) When cutting the strips for the block, be as careful as you can with the measurements of the pieces.  You may wish to make a paper pattern to use if you do not have quilting tools (a rotary cutter, cutting mat and ruler) and are planning to use good old fashioned scissors. 

   3)  The fabric should be cut on straight of the grain.

Materials:  You will need a selection of  100% cotton quilting cotton.  You may choose to use 2 shades of one and 2 shades of another or may simplify the fabric choices with only 1 of each.  It is up to you how complicated you wish to make the block.  These sample colours are just samples.  Feel free to choose colours that are in these colour families but exact matches are not needed.  : )   Have fun when picking your colours and they can be prints.  They do not need to be solids.  Prints are often more fun.  For instance, we chose purple and green.  You could also pick just purples or just greens.  Your choice.

You may select quilter’s Fat Quarters when buying the fabric or by yardage.  You would buy 4 fat quarters if going that route.  2 fat quarters should do the trick if you are just using 2 colours.    If you are buying yardage, you will need no more than a 10 cm cut of each fabric if using 4 colours.  20 cm of each colour if using 2 colours. 

 Use a good quality thread. 

Cut your pieces carefully.  You do not have to prewash your fabric.

Supply list:
10 cm of colour a, b, c and d or 4 fat quarters in your colour choices.

Cutting Instructions:
You will need:
1.      Cut one of   4” x 4”  for the centre square Colour A
2.     Cut 2 of   2” x 4” strip  Colour B
3.     Cut 2 of 2” x 7” strip  Colour B
4.     Cut 2 of 2” x 7” strip  Colour C
5.     Cut 2 of 2” x 10” strip  Colour C
6.     Cut 2 of 2” x 10” strip  Colour D
7.     Cut 2 of 2” x 13’ strip  Colour D


Take your 4" square and pin a 4" strip on each of 2 sides of the square.  Right sides together.  Stitch a quarter inch seam on each side.  Important:  Press open all seams.

Take the 7” strips and pin them in place, right sides together and sew a quarter inch seam, enclosing the lavender square.  Press seams open.

Now take the 7” strips in colour C and pin them to the square, right sides together and sew with a quarter inch seam.  Press seams open.  You are well on your way
Take the 10” strips of the same colour and pin, sew and press.

You are almost there!  Take the final strips and pin the 10” strip to the block, pin, sew, and press.  Finally take the 13” strips and pin, sew and press.  Voila!  Your quilt block is done!

Your block should finish at close to 13” square.