August 15, 2016

July 2016 Update

WHERE DID THE TIME GO???? It's mid August and I'm soo late gettting the July update done.

It seems I have a few finished quilts to share with you this month. This first quilt is Pies & Tarts a design by Sue Daley It's a fun english paper piecing pattern, so it's very portable. I used a variety of scraps for the pies and tarts, and selected some beige fabrics for the background squares. 

July 02, 2016

June 2016 Update

 Hi everyone! June has been a busy month around here in the Pacific NW. One of my favorite things to do, is eat the fresh raspberries growing in our backyard. YUM
I also spent some time organizing my fabric scraps, the ones that are too small to do anything significant with. But, definitely too large to throw away. The smallest size I will cut is 2" squares or 1 1/2" strips. The largest of the scraps are 5" squares.
 I'm putting the finishing touches on the Pies and Tarts quilt. I started earlier in the month by handquilting, and then added in some machine quilting to finish it up. I found this binding a few years ago on a scrap table at a guild meeting, and couldn't resist it. I am so glad I picked it up, since it seems perfect with this quilt. I hope to finish the binding today.
 Vintage Quilter's Newsletter Magazines 
A couple months ago I made a request to my small quilting group: Did anyone have 80's or 90's QNN's? Of course there were several eager members willing to part with their magazines. 
You might wonder why in the world would I ask for them. I have found that some of the articles feature techniques that we have either forgotten about, or are no longer relevant. (I just read an excellent piece about using an ironing board to miter quilt borders-In the above magazine issue). Also, some of the quilt patterns are really nice to look at. I'll admit that some are also really horrible. LOL. The pattern on the cover of this issue is really nice, and would work well with modern fabrics.
I have enough magazines to occupy my nighttime reading for several months. Each favorite quilt/article is earmarked for possible future projects.
 Wing it Crochet
I rarely use a crochet pattern, even though I have several reference books on crochet stitches. This baby afghan (A gift for my great-nephew- due next month) is worked in Double crochet and what I call a V stitch. Each row is a mirror stitch of the previous row.
 Denim Quilt #4
I've made a lot of progress on the final denim art quilt. Today or tomorrow I might be able to get to the batting and backing. I've used a variety of threads: Signature quilting thread, Gutermann all purpose, and Sulky 12wt.

Baby Quilt
My nephew and his wife love blue and black fabrics. I'm not sure if it stems from their love of Doctor Who/Tardis, or it's just their favorite colors. Before they were married, they had requested some steampunk costumes and I was so happy with outcome, I had them model for me.
They were married last year, and their colors were blue and silver. 
So, with a their little one coming along in August, I designed this simple quilt. I'm not sure if they will see this blog post, but I couldn't wait to share.
You'll need:
21 5x10" blue
21 5x10" black
1 5x7" blue (to create a staggered look)

If you've made a jelly roll race quilt, you'll find this quilt kind of works the same way.
Take your 5x7 blue piece and stitch the end to a 5x10 black piece. You'll now stitch end to end alternating colors until you use up all your fabric. 
Place both ends right side together, and stitch down the sides. (I'd watch the video for the details). Once the quilt reached the desired size, I pressed the top, added the extra loft polyfil batting, a plain black backing, 2 1/2" binding (fold in half then stitch to the front, then hand stitch on the back) and then tied with blue wool yarn. 

Finished size: 50x37" large enough so the baby can use it for several years. 
This quilt took me 15 min to cut out fabric. 45 min to piece, quilt and tie.
Sneak Peek. I've been working on this 36x47" painting for several years. I picked up a dreadful painting at a local thrift shop, sanded and reprimed the canvas, then started applying my base coat. 
Last year I started adding in some shapes, and some details. 
Over the next few months I'll be finishing up on a few things that I think it needs before having it put on display in the lobby of Benjamins Salon. Along with a price tag. I'll be sure to take photos of the finished piece. It would be great to see this go to the perfect home.
I've been accepted to participate in a craft show later this year!  So, that means working like crazy to make spool ornaments, spool mini's (like the ones in the photo), fringed scarves (adult and child), and lavender sachets. My Paisley Parkes co-owner Marie will have her baby sweaters there as well. 
I'm also making display stands, and planning the booth layout.
I'll fill you in on the show details as we get closer to the date.
Well, I think that's pretty much everything I've been doing this past month. I also filled you in on what I'm currently working on, so I'll have plenty to show for the July update.
Have a terrific summer!

May 30, 2016

May 2016 Update

 The month of May saw the completion of my brother-in-laws quilt. This quilt was made from striped shirts, muslin, and on the reverse some fly-fishing lure fabric. Since my Sister wanted to have a cuddly quilt, I tied the quilt using wool yarn. With future washings, this quilt should get softer and softer as time goes on. This is a generous lap quilt: approximately 48" x 68"

May was also a busy time for making more lavender sachets for the Etsy store: Paisley Parkes. All the sachets are filled with lavender from my garden, and a little polyfil for softness. 

I love using up my fabric scraps for these, and also finding coordinating buttons. They are so fun to make and I don't have to cut into my yardage. 

April and May have been quiet months for finishing things. I recently acquired some better lamps for taking photos, which hopefully, will cut down the time it takes to do editing. I don't know about you, but I'd much rather be creating with fabric than dinking around on the computer. 
Plant a Garden, Feed a Bunny
I hope you had a productive May, and that as we head into June, you have summery projects to turn to in your spare time. Happy Stitching!

April 29, 2016

April 2016 Update

 I celebrated my birthday on April 2nd, with wonderful food and family. Living in the Pacific NW, April has been known to have beautiful weather. And it hasn't disappointed us this year. In fact we've broken a few high temperature records! Along with the warmer temps, comes beautiful flowers. This lilac bush was in full bloom a week ago, so I feel fortunate that I caught a great photo before they dwindled. 
 As for projects that I've been working on: I have finished tying the gift quilt (photo taken before snipping the yarn). All that is left is to attach the binding and gift label. This is being made for someone to gift to their loved one.
 On April 16, I met with my small quilt group, What Knots. We are currently deciding on a challenge project, and I can't wait until we reach our final decision. One of the quilter's had some needlepoint kits to give away: they were the same bird design, one a coin purse the other a little larger at 5"x7". Unfortunately, I threw away the packaging, so I can't even tell you the designer. But, they worked up perfect!
I'm not sure if I mentioned that my LQS (fabric-etc) is closing. The owner is retiring, and I'm so happy for her. That will leave our city with one LQS, which I will have to get to know better. Anyway, Fabric-etc is discounting everything, and I finally picked up the Zirkel magnetic pincushion. I  LOVE  IT.  You just drop the pins, needle down and they automatically arrange like the photo. No more stabbing myself with pins. Yay! One thing though- This thing is heavy, at little over 1 pound. 
I'm slowly working on a few projects, and I also need to work on photographing new items for the Etsy store, and getting the descriptions written up. I have so much respect for people that do all their own work on their Etsy stores. 
That's about it for the April update. I'd love to hear about your month! If you have a blog, please share your link! Happy Crafting!

April 01, 2016

March 2016 Update

Happy Spring everyone! I hope you had a productive March and that you are busy working on your April projects. 
I contracted a cold bug in early March, and was still suffering 3 weeks later. Nothing serious, but that bug sure packed a punch. Then I wrenched my lower back on the 24th and with luck, I'll improve soon.
So, I did manage to finish a few things. 
A while back, I purchased a plain white birdhouse at a rummage sale for $1. It's quite heavy and is more for decoration than function. It's 16"x12"x11" so it's a little large as well. 

I knew this would be a fun project. I repainted with a buttery yellow and green and I detail painted the chimney and fence. The next step was soooo tedious: The pinecone roof. At first I used some special glue, but the drying time was too slow. I found that by using grout to adhere each piece worked out much better. Finally, the polished rocks were glued on to mimic a foundation. I opted to not grout the rocks, since I really liked the unfinished look. A clear sealer was sprayed to keep it weather resistant. I do have one more step to do: window screen material over the openings to keep the interior clean. 
I had time to make a few Springtime spool miniatures. I was lucky enough to find the wood bird and rabbit ornaments at the thrift shop. I just snipped off the attached cord and they were ready to go. I'll be adding them to the Etsy shop in a few weeks, in the meantime they are for sale locally at Benjamins salon.
This is a sneak peek of the quilt I'm making for someone. (shhhh it's a secret) I have used mostly cotton shirts and a couple cotton sheets along with some muslin. All that's left to do, is sandwich the pieces together and tie it! (it'll feel more like a comforter with some loft to it). Once the quilt has been gifted to the recipient, then I can share the final photo.
The denim quilt series and the abstract painting have been delayed because of the cold bug I had earlier and low back pain I currently have. BUT, I'm hopeful that I'll feel better in a week, so I can get moving on those pieces. 
I'll see you next month! In the meantime, enjoy some of the flowers from my backyard: