Thursday, April 30, 2015

Hand quilting progress

Once again, the Champagne Quilters met to work on the baby quilts.

Here's Ann and Marg working on the pre-printed quilt top. With so many lines, Ann was having trouble just working on the diagonal so Marg thought it would help if she worked alongside her. 
We found that we were low on our supply of white quilting thread so we're hoping Fabricland will have a sale soon.

 This is the one I worked on last night. We were a bit late getting to Marg's so it was a slow start.

Nevertheless, I did manage to get several turns on the frame. I'm hoping on finishing the quilting next week so I can begin one of the other ones. This one worked up surprisingly fast. We thought we'd bind it with either the orange or the yellow.

Marg managed to make four more baby hats using the leftover yarns I have been giving her. This brings a total of 21 hats that she has made. Once all the baby quilts have been finished, I'll deliver them, along with all the hats and flannel blankets that I have at home.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Helpful aids to design your own quilt

There are so many different ways of doing something. There are so many quilts that one can make. There are so many kits to purchase if one is so inclined BUT, have you ever thought about designing one that would be your very own and therefore unique? It's not hard and you could use your own stash. You wouldn't even have to own any electronic software - just use your imagination and some paper and a pencil (or two.) You could make it any size you wanted - from a mini quilt to a king-sized bed quilt. 
Here are a few online aids that could help you get the brain cells firing up. Don't say you can't draw. Buy some graph paper and use a calculator if you have to but just try it.

Making Octagons

So, I was thinking of making a quilt using octagons. The easiest way, of course, is to cut squares and sew the corners diagonally, using smaller squares. But what size? What if I want to use a 6 inch square? That would be 6.5 inches unfinished. What size should I cut the squares for the corner? Well, being a researcher, I posed the question online and here is what I found: a calculator. Yes, a calculator for carpenters but it could very well be used by us quilters.

So, I used the drop-down menus that were provided. For a 6.5 inch square, I would need a square almost 3 inches - to be more accurate, it would have to be cut 2  11/16 inches.

So, go ahead, design your own quilts. Use the calculator and be free to make whatever kind of quilt you want.

Colour Theory

Want to have some fun while learning about colour theory? My daughter gave me this link.

Just choose from the "Color Rule" drop down menu and then move the 'dial' around. Loads of fun.

Division or multiplication

Did you ever want to know how many charm squares you can get from a fat quarter? Or how many 2 inch squares you can get from a fat quarter?

I do hope these sites have given you some fun playing and perhaps your mind is working on a new quilt, an original quilt - one that is your very own.

And now, for the requisite photo.

This is the last big quilt that the Champagne Quilters finished. It is being raffled off between now and November, when the winning ticket will be announced at the annual church bazaar. There was a tea yesterday at Marg's church (I was invited) for the unveiling of the quilt and also the beginning of ticket sales. I asked if I could have a couple of books of tickets and so far I have sold 9 tickets - all to my family so far. It doesn't have a label and so that is one of the projects on my 'to do' list.

By the way, this was our own design. Made on the fly and not even on paper. It's actually the second one we made. The first one had thinner sashing and therefore, more stars.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Zig Zag Quilt has its Border

Tonight the Champagne quilters met to see if we could get the border on that zig zag quilt.

Before cutting those triangles off, I decided to sew the borders on and then cut. That way, I didn't have to worry about bias edges and ripples.

I sewed the opposite ends first and then the sides.

I didn't want to guess at where to sew. I lined up a ruler and drew a line in pencil. This was where I lined up the edge of the border fabric and sewed a quarter of an inch away.

I sewed while Marg ironed.

This is the final product. Since we wanted 4 quilt tops done before we started quilting, Marg came across some pre-printed fabric in pink. I just had to trim the edges and so next week, we will be quilting on two frames and so, two baby quilts will be worked on at one time.

Marg didn't want the off cuts to go to waste so she started playing with them. New blocks for a future quilt? Perhaps.

I'm linking up with The Needle and Thread Network. Pop on over to see what other Canadians are up to this week.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Mish mash

Just a bit of drivle.

The first robin sighting a couple of days ago.

In the centre, just a bit to the right, is a little red speck. Click on the photo to enlarge it.

Is this better? My little Canon Elph only zooms in so far.

This needs a couple of extra rows. I need to make some mittens and touques.

These are some fabrics that I picked out from my stash to make little boys shirts.

A little orange kitty...

and a little gray bunny. They will show up soon with a couple of friends in a finished project. But for now, that's all.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Another Champagne Quilters Update

My ride last night was stuck in traffic so I didn't make it to Marg's at the regular time but, we did manage to get the top put together.

It was tricky but we took it slow and didn't have to use the seam ripper. It feels good to get this together but we don't think we will be doing another one. I think I will sew a small border around the cutting lines before I cut the points off to square it up.

I had given Marg some ends of yarns that I had and it looks like she kept busy. Eleven hats were made in two weeks and now she needs more yarn. I old her I had lots so I will have to go through my bags to find some that are suitable for baby hats.

I hope you all have a great weekend. My daughter's baby shower is on Sunday so I will be busy sewing today and baking tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Needle Arts

There are a lot of us that know how to do several different needle arts. At the moment, I happen to be dabbling in several of them.

I finished the little boy shirt. I wasn't too happy with the pattern. I may use it another time but I'll make the short sleeved shirt. The long sleeved version with the cuffs was a bit of a pain as was the separate centre interfacing.

A small cross stitch for a card and the beginning of another knitted rainbow blanket in progress.

This is what came in the mail today. My good blogging friend, Ulla has been learning to tat and when I mentioned that I had thought of doing the same, she sent me this book (she has the Finnish version) and the DVD. I love the card too and plan on framing it to add to my female wall of art.

I'm linking up to The Needle and Thread Network. Do check out Ulla's blog. She has a sampling of her quilts on display and The Needle and Thread Network has even more inspiration.

Monday, April 6, 2015

Easter sewing

I made Easter baskets for the little boys but of course, I forgot to take a photo before the package was sealed. I asked my daughter to take a photo so I could post it on the blog and here they are.

Identical baskets with different coloured lining.  I have had that Easter egg fabric for eons and never found a use for it. I only had a half metre but it was enough for two baskets with a bit left over.

Big enough for whatever the Easter bunny left.

I got some lovely deep pink tulips from my daughter Maili.

This is what Easter Sunday looked like. It was nice enough on Good Friday for lawn chairs.

Two days later, snow. It's all gone now.

I managed to get a little mug rug sewn.

The Easter fabric came in handy again.

This is a little 5 inch Dresden plate. It's so cute. I may just make more. The pattern was supposed to have 19 blades but it wouldn't lay flat so I took two blades away and voila, a flat plate.

I hope your Easter weekend was a great one. The little boys and their parents left Saturday and made it home safely.
I'm off to finish up the little shirt today and maybe get some knitting done.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Today's sewing

I am in the process of making little boys' clothing. Luc and Patric are in Ontario and at the moment they are up north visiting their dad's relatives. They arrived last Thursday and left for Sudbury on Saturday but they will be coming back tomorrow. Then it's off to the aquarium, family dinner on Good Friday with all of us and back home to BC early Saturday morning. Lots of travelling. So, I thought that since they are here, I could try out some patterns and if they work, I can use them again once they are gone and I can then send them as many items of clothing as I want to make. I will at least know if the patterns are the correct size.

This is a dark green twill. I had a piece of fabric just sitting on my shelf and, since it was 60 inches wide, I got a pair of pants for Luc out of it. It still needs an elastic and it needs to be hemmed but I have to have Luc try it on.

I'll be working on this shirt for Luc tonight. It's a brushed fabric in light green. Hopefully, I will have time to make Patric a short sleeved shirt for the summer. He gets his brother's hand-me-downs but it's always nice to get something new.

Picked these up for the boys. They are bubble blowers. I also bought some more bubble bath. They love 'bubbles.'

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