Monday, September 30, 2013

Quilts - unfinished

Two borders on.

The 16-patch is now framed with a border of 4.5 inches. I'm not quilting it yet but at least it's off the floor now and ready to put on the frame - when I'm ready.

Here's the Aunt Alice quilt laid out. It's really hard sometimes with my little helper. I have cut all of the pieces for this quilt now and it's in a bin - waiting for me to sew it all up.

This is the one I will be focusing on to get finished up. It will have a thin white border and then another, slightly wider border of brown with blue polka dots. I had it all finished last year BUT I was told it had to be longer. So, I had to figure out a way to add length while keeping with the overall pattern. The pattern is based on an Atkinson Design called Fire Escape. This one is my youngest daughter, Ayla's quilt. She chose the colours/fabrics.

I'm watching "Just for Laughs Gags" on TV. It's hilarious. Sort of like the old Candid Camera but without any words whatsoever. Tricks played on the unsuspecting public. I love the program and I laugh my head off. There aren't too many things that make me laugh out loud but this program sure does.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

All done

Enough curly worm bookmarks for one grade three class with 5 extras in case someone doesn't like the choice that's left.

Pixel on guard in case one of them decided to escape.

Now, I'm on to working on one or two quilts.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

And yet, again

another quilt started. I suppose this is a sign that I have way too many things to do, too many ideas swirling around and/or way too much fabric to use up. Either way, I am not bored.

This time I can tell you what most of the fabrics are - layer cakes of Amy Butler's Belle. There are, and will be, one or two other fabrics in there to make up the double bed sized quilt I am planning for these. My middle daughter, Maili,  knows that these fabrics are not to my liking but they are something that she likes. So, she will be getting the quilt when it's all done. The Creative Festival is coming next month so I may pick up some border fabric or backing for this since nothing I have is this wild.

And now, an oddity and something not related to fabric. This hyacinth never got planted in my garden after it finished blooming in the spring but it sat outside on the deck all summer. For some reason, it thought that spring was here once again and started growing and then blooming. I think it's quite nice.

I have continued working away at the little curly worm book marks and once they all have eyes, I shall post a photo.

Right now, I will be linking up with The Needle and Thread Network. There is always inspiration to be had at the site.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Another 16-patch

I didn't need to start another quilt. I really didn't but...

I came across this pattern. I was going to throw it away or put it in a pile of stuff to donate to the guild but then, I started reading the instructions. It's a scrap quilt and I do have a whole lot of scraps. It's called Auntie Alice and is supposed to be scrappy, red and beige - not me at all.

The pattern calls for 18 blocks of 16 squares measuring 2.5 inches. The block will finish at  8.5 inches. Sounds familiar indeed. Those are the same dimensions as my colourful 16-patch that I am currently putting together. As you can see from the pattern, these blocks will be set on point and so after looking at the pattern and hemming and hawing, I decided to dive into my scraps and make a definite diagonal pattern to my 16-patch scrappy blocks.

The pattern also calls for 17 blocks cut 4.5 inches square. While I was ironing, I came across this piece of fabric so I took it downstairs to my sewing den and measured it. It's approximately 14" X 34" and that would yield more than enough squares for this project. I was sort of determined to use this piece. I don't know why but it just said 'use me.' I was prepared to find something else that went with it in case there wasn't enough fabric in this piece and I needed a few extra blocks. The pattern has these 4.5" squares in a red and since I am not a red person, navy seemed perfect. Also, I am planning on using a gray instead of the beige stated in the pattern for the sashing which measures at 8.5" X 4.5" which makes sense since those are the measurements of the blocks I have mentioned so far. I'm thinking of going scrappy navy with the outside triangles but since I'm not there yet, I will make a decision later. It's all about using up what I have.

It's probably a lap size and even though I don't need another quilt that size, perhaps one of my children will like it enough to use it once it's finished. The instructions don't give the final dimensions. It's a freebie pattern from The Quilt Patch that I received several years ago and I only came upon it because I was looking for another pattern. I really need to do some paper recycling in the pattern department. There is no way I am going to make all the things that I photocopied...once upon a time.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

A little fall sewing

In between getting my 16-patch sewn together, I have been sewing little projects that were on my list.

Two trivets. The one on the left is a pillow panel. I have four of them with pumpkins and since I am never going to make them into pillows, I thought they would work for this little project. I'm really trying to use up the stuff that I have. The one on the right is identical to one I made before. I just happen to like the fabric.

Here's the back fabric. On the right is a fall themed tree fabric and the other one is apple baskets. That way they can be reversible. Both of them have one layer of a flat batting (whatever I had on hand) and one layer of Insul-Bright which is a batting specially made for pot holders, oven mitts, casserole cozies, etc. The wonkiness of them comes from quilting through all four layers. These two are heading to my daughter out in B.C., along with the bibs I showed earlier.

Here's the 16-patch again. In an effort to use up fabric, I am trying to decide whether or not to use that bright fabric in the border.

If I do decide to use this, it would be a 1" strip bordered on two sides by either navy or dark green (I won't use black.)

I'm linking up this week with Esther's blog and also with The Needle and Thread Network.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Sew Sisters Big Sale

Don't forget, today's the day of Sew Sisters big birthday sale. Hurry on over to check out the great deals. Even the clearance fabric is on sale.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Some sewing

On Friday we got a bit of a rain shower.

 This was just as I opened the front door.

It really did come down but it only lasted for a little while. I just wanted to know if I took a photo of the rain, how it would show up. I think my little Elph did an OK job.

Today, while I had the day to myself, I got to cross of yet another thing off my list.

Little boy bibs.

Two big bibs for Luc and two smaller ones for Patric. A western theme because I figured it would be fun for them. The fronts are cotton, the backing is poly/cotton and there is a layer of some flannel in between that I had hanging around. The flannel just gives a bit of thickness and stability.

 Now I'm off to crochet some more little curly worm bookmarks.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Christmas Quilt Along - September

Well, it's here, the second full weekend of the month and it's time for the Christmas QAL. This month is being hosted by Hazel over at Hazel's Quilts. Go on over for a visit to see what everyone is up to this month on their Christmas projects.

 I have been diligently cutting and sewing some fabric for my Christmas Present table runner. For those of you who haven't been here before, it's a free pattern over here at Connecting Threads. I'm just making my runner a bit shorter since the challenge had a stipulation whereby the whole project couldn't be more than 96" in perimeter.

 And here's where I'm at right now. I have a bit of a ways to go but I still have a couple months left to finish it.

 In case you haven't visited in a while, I have completed this Christmas star. It was a UFO for several years and I finally decided that it was time to get it finished and it is now totally complete with label and a hanging sleeve.

So, now I will link up with Hazel for the Christmas QAL.

Giveaway Winner

Thank you to everyone who entered the Sew Sisters Giveaway. Don't forget September 17th is the big sale at Sew Sisters so pop on over to see some great bargains!

Since I haven't got a clue as to how to show the Random Number Generator widget, you will just have to trust me that the winning number was 23, bluenines, who said: "sew sisters are a great fabric source , I like the fabrics they have given you, very pretty." Congratulations!

I have contacted her via email to get her mailing address so that this bundle of fat quarters can be delivered to her door. 

This weekend is the Christmas Quilt Along and Challenge so come on back to see how far I've gotten with my sewing.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

A little update

I have now finished quilting the big red Christmas star quilt and it is off the frame.

Here it is, not yet trimmed. I am in the process of putting the binding on. Then comes the label and a hanging sleeve. I left this on the floor - just for a little while and...

Pixel found it. I think she just adds a little extra to the overall design of the quilt.

This is the backing fabric that I used. It was a piece that was just hanging around and, for the most part, it fit. The quilt is 46 inches square and the fabric was close to 60 inches wide so I just cut off a bit and added it to the other side because it wasn't quite long enough. However, I was a tad too short and had to add a little piece. Can you see it? It's in the lower left corner. Here...

can you see it better now?

However, even though it isn't really noticeable, look at how much gets trimmed.


It just sort of blends right in. Once the label is ready, I can put it in this little corner and no one will be the wiser as to the extra little piece in the back.

Oh look. The 16-patch is all done. I just have to sew it all up and add a small border.

These are little curly worm bookmarks that I am crocheting for my son's girlfriend's class. She teaches a grade three and I thought they could use something fun to keep them interested in reading.

Here's a few in various stages of being finished. I have about 15 more to make (I figure extras are always nice so the children can have their choice.) I am getting to use up some odds and ends of yarn and that makes me happy. Just one worm takes roughly 3-4 yards of yarn. There are several free patterns out there and I have used two different ones. Not much difference in the overall look.

I am, once again, linking up with The Needle and Thread Network so pop on over to see what else is being made this week in Canada.

If you haven't yet entered the Sew Sisters Giveaway, it's here. Hurry, it closes on Friday, midnight.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Sew Sisters Giveaway

In advance of their biggest sale of the year, which is happening on one day only, September 17th, I have been asked by Carol, of Sew Sisters Quilt Shop, to host a giveaway.

This gorgeous set of fat quarters is what Sew Sisters will be giving to one lucky commenter. It's the Fusions Collections from Robert Kaufman.

Sew Sisters Quilt Shop is a Canadian quilt store that celebrates all things quilting. They have a large selection of fabric, notions, books, patterns and kits. Whether you’re shopping online at, or in the store in Toronto, you will receive the best in products and service. At Sew Sisters they believe you should Buy Fabric, Not Postage! and so they have the most reasonable rates on shipping in Canada. Visit their website to find out more!

This giveaway is open from now until midnight Friday, September 13th EST (Eastern Standard Time.) I will draw a name on Saturday and this giveaway is open to everyone. They will ship internationally. Please just one comment per person and let me know what your plans would be for the fabric if you were to win OR just tell me what you are working on at the moment.
NOTE: if you are on Wordpress or Google + or Typepad, you may come up as a 'no reply' commenter so PLEASE leave your email with your comment. If in doubt, please leave your email address. I would hate to have to pick another winner if the first one is a 'no reply' and I have no means of contacting you.
Good luck to you all.

A winner has been chosen. Comments are now closed.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013


There have been a few turns taken on quilt frame.

I think I may fill the whole star with straight lines. I'll see how it looks like once I get a few more lines done.

I am debating on whether or not to add another quilting line inside the beige squares that have the single star.
This is as far as I have it at the moment. I'll be taking a couple more turns very soon.
Slow going but it will get done.

I'm linking up with The Needle and Thread Network. Go on over to see what else is happening this week.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

My 'tools of the trade'

Well, maybe not quite 'trade', but these are the things I use when hand quilting.

 The main thing that I need is a really good pair of glasses. I debated on getting a new pair because my older ones were okay, BUT it was getting harder to see cross stitch and quilting lines with my other pair. Now, I'm fine.
The other things in this photo are the brown pencil crayon that I use to draw around different shapes to quilt (the stars in the beige area.) Also, there is a clear 6" ruler that I use not for measuring but I use the edge as a guide to draw a straight line for quilting. I use the width too.

My homemade, handmade quilt templates using cereal boxes or whatever cardboard I have around.

Another ruler. I do use masking tape for straight line quilting but at the moment neither my husband nor I know where they are hiding. You can also see the yellow pencil crayon that I use to mark on the red or brown. The three spools are all various brands of quilting thread. My favourite is Coats and Clark because of the stiffness it has. The beige one that I am using a lot of on this quilt is by Mettler and feels more like regular sewing thread. No stiffness but I guess it's a tad heavier than regular weight. I'm sure the only reason I have it is that I needed that particular colour. The brown is by Talon. Don't know where I picked it up but I have had it for a long time. It's stiff like the Coats and not bad to work with at all.

More quilting threads, my thimble and the eraser - just in case I goof up in the marking. I won't be using the yellow or the off white in this quilt but when I started, I just grabbed what I thought I might use.

Here they all are, on top of the quilt. This photo was taken first thing this morning. As you can see, there have been a couple of turns taken on the quilt - two from each end. So, I could work on the two borders that are left or start to work on the centre part. It usually depends on which chair my kitty is sleeping on but at the moment, she is upstairs on one of the beds so I have my pick of sides.

Just to show you what I used the ruler for and the star quilt template.

While working on the border I looked over and then decided to take a photo. It's not a quilt until it's quilted and I just love the way the sewing of the three layers brings out the quilting.
See you later, I'm off to get more done on this.