Saturday, March 31, 2012

Just a little sewing

This is an ongoing project. My quilting buddy Judy and I decided to exchange paper-pieced animals. They had to be North American mammals and we eventually will make a Canadian-themed quilt. We take turns making two paper-pieced mammals, keep one and give one to the other person. The last time I made one was July, 2009. I know because I just checked my archives. Since I am meeting Judy this morning, to go to the quilt show, I figured I may as well get a move on. The pattern has been sitting on my sewing machine for months.

My donkey. I haven't quite finished mine yet but it will be the same. It wasn't a difficult pattern at all but taking the paper off after was not fun. I forgot to shorten my stitch length.

I also decided to make more of the full body bibs for little Luc. Now that the big quilt is finished, Marg, Ann and I have been going through bags of fabric that have been donated to us. Most of it is quilt worthy but some of it isn't or else we just didn't want the pieces. We donated a lot to the guild. I think this fabric was waiting to be made into a baby quilt or the backing for a baby quilt. There really wasn't quite that much and would have had to be pieced with something else but it was perfect for me. Marg hauled this out and gave it to me when I mentioned that I wanted to make the little guy some bibs.

So, I used some of the double fold bias tape that I have and here it is. The dimensions are roughly 11" X 19" and the tie is 24". I used a saucer to mark the curve for the neck. Sorry for the quality of the photo but it's really dull out. We got a bit of snow last night - just a dusting.

There was enough fabric to make 4 bibs exactly with nothing left over. The first one I made only had a backing fabric but even though the top fabric was a bit heavier, it still needed something more. I had some flannel handy and cut it up and it worked well - not too thick and not too thin.

I think I'll go see if there is some other fabric I can use up. I want to make Luc a summer hat.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Little purchases

I was in Fabricland not too long ago to get some flannel that was on sale so I could make a couple of receiving blankets to go with the baby quilt. While I was waiting in line at the checkout counter, this is what I found.

Cute little, flexible thimbles. I couldn't resist since they were only 2/$1.00.

 And then there were these little embroidery scissors. You can never have too many pairs of scissors. They seem to get misplaced so quickly. I did manage to find three different flannel prints that were suitable for a baby and I have serged the edges. All is ready and I am way early since the little one isn't due until the end of the summer. (Blogger isn't co-operating since both these photos are sideways.)

Now, I find that good friends of ours will be first time grandparents in September so I guess I will be making another baby quilt. Exciting days ahead.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Live Theatre

I have always enjoyed live theatre and was even a subscriber as a very young teenager (I think I was 15.) I used to go alone. When I was 16, I worked as an usherette and it was the best part time job ever. Years later I mentioned that to my children and at least 3 of them have worked at theatres and my eldest son is a part time manager today. In the olden days people dressed up and refreshments were not allowed in the theatre at all. Times have changed but I still enjoy going to the theatre and yes, I do dress up. However, I do not bring a drink or food into theatre. Living in a big city has its advantages and here, in Toronto, we have many theatres both large and small. We even have Young Peoples Theatre where I brought my little ones years ago.

 This past Sunday my husband and I went to see All Shook Up at Stage West, which is a dinner theatre. We, along with another couple, have been season subscribers for several years. This was a play and all of the music performed were songs that Elvis once sang, It was enjoyed by all of us.

Yesterday, I went to a matinee to see ...

War Horse with my daughter Maili at the Princess of Wales Theatre. The tickets were a Christmas gift to me from my husband and it was really, really good. I loved the puppets and the minimalist stage settings. I don't know what it is with stage settings but I love the creativity of someone who can take the director's vision of the play and design settings in the small, confined space of the stage. The puppets were just wonderful and at one point I turned to my daughter and told her I felt sorry for the two that were worked to death. She just looked at me and thought I was nuts. The horse puppeteers did a marvelous job.

However, what I didn't like was the fact that some audience member forgot to shut off his or her cell phone. It was so disturbing because it went on for quite some time and I missed part of the play because of it. DUMB!! The other thing I really disliked was the fact that the lady sitting beside my daughter fell asleep during the second act. That really wasn't so bad but she snored! Yes, she snored. She had on dark sunglasses too. The only redeeming thing was that the loud shouting on stage or the very loud artillery fire (this is a war story) woke her up every once in a while - but then she promptly fell asleep again to snore away.

This was put on by a University of Toronto group called New Faces. My eldest son Mark took me to see it on the first night that it was on - March 8th. It ran for only 3 days and the night we were there, it was poorly attended. That was a shame because the group went to a lot of time and effort to put it on. Mind you, in my opinion, and also my son's, there was only one young lady who was worth her salt as an actress, but still, it was worth seeing. The others I think, just needed more time to mature as actors. Mark was curious about this Oscar Wilde play and his wife couldn't make it. He knew I would hardly ever pass up an opportunity to go to the theatre. After seeing it, I realized that I had seen the play done by a community theatre group a few years ago.
I must say, I have been lucky this month with my theatre-going - 3 plays in one month.

So, if you have a chance to go see these any live theatre, go. It will bring you joy. There may even be an amateur community theatre group in your area if you don't happen to live in or near a big city. Go out and support them.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

It's pink and another finish - finally

The lily opened.

 And it appears as if a few more will be open tomorrow. Too bad they aren't fragrant.

This little sweater, made from chunky yarn, has been sitting in pieces for a long time. I made it last year and  it's a size 2 so little Luc can wear it next year. It knit up fast and the main reasons I made it was to try out the pattern, which was easy, and also to use up some of the hoard of chunky yarn that I have. I will make this again but I wish I had someone that liked sewing the pieces together. It's my least favourite task and that's why this took so long to get finished. But now it's done and I am linking up with The Needle and Thread Network. Pop on over to see what other Canadians are up to this week.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Spring flowers

I found this lily at the grocery store. It was one of two.

See all those buds? I just could not leave it there for someone else. It came home with me.

I didn't care what colour it was but it looks like it will be pink.

There are 3 stalks and 12 + 10 + 12 = 34 blooms. I do hope they all open and not just fall off. I will take another picture once the blooms have opened. 

Friday, March 23, 2012

Another finish

 All that's left is to add the buttons. I made another slight alteration to the pattern.

 This is the pattern. The cat only has eyes.

I added a nose because...

the cover looked like the cat had a nose...

either that or someone missed a stitch.

I have now finished the Autumn Medley cross stitch. It was passed on to me by Linda of Stitch Lines. In the same spirit, the pattern is now up for grabs. If you're interested let me know.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012


The baby quilt is now finished - except for the label.

The binding was made to match the strips of the colourful border.

The little doggy.

The baby carriage.

And a little rocking horse.

Here's the back. The fabric is Precious Moments Jungle Buddies for those of you who need to know about fabrics. What I had in my stash just didn't match the quilt, according to my daughter, and so I had to actually go out and scour Fabricland for something suitable. It was a joy to quilt this baby quilt.

I am linking this up with the Needle and Thread Network.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

A little more progress

Both sides have now had a couple of turns taken.This really is a lot of fun to work on.

I'm linking up to the Needle and Thread Network. Go take a look to see what other Canadians are working on and get inspired.

Monday, March 12, 2012

A small change

This is the cross stitch that I am currently working on.

The red "leaf" above the word Autumn doesn't look much like any leaf I have seen so I went searching for something that was closer to a maple leaf - after all, I am Canadian.

This is what I found.

A wonderful lady by the name of Nancy Spruance had this free on her web site and she copyrighted it in 1984.

Here's the URL if you want it. This way I don't have to email it to all of you who wish to use it.

Here's my version. Don't look too close, it's not that good. It took a while to see if it would fit since this is 16 count Aida and my eyes are no longer 20 years old. Counting this maple leaf chart and then counting the original leaf design took several tries and this is a bit bigger but I like it much better. Now that I look at it, I didn't add the veins in straight stitch - so I think I will leave it out.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Just a little progress

I took a turn on the baby quilt. This bunny is on an outside row.

This soother got turned under before I thought about taking a photo.

I love these little baby feet. Taking a turn on a quilt is always exciting.

Crossed baby rattles. The clip art for this one only had one rattle and it was plain. So, I added the double lines to add interest to an otherwise plain circle and I also decided to add another rattle to fill up the block. Turning a quilt shows progress. Stay tuned for more.