Saturday, April 11, 2015

Love mail!

I am crushing on the bright fabric that I won for the contest! This is the one that I entered with my quilt for my daughter into Fon's and Porter's Quilt that you Love contest! You have to love a good magazine! I'll be browsing through this deciding what I'm going to make! I couldn't find a selvage with the name on the above, but the rest of the fabric is called "Dash". Very cute! I think I'm going to use it for my Bionic Gear Bag Notions Tote from Craftsy. I just downloaded the pattern this morning....get this...OVER 50 pages of instructions! Heavens! you get a "bonus" pattern, but honestly! is for "beginners", so I hope that all those pages make it easier to put together! I'll have to find a binder to store it in! ha ha! One of my fellow quilters, Trish, made one and it is just beautiful! She said it had a lot of instructions to it. The finished product was great! If I can make it through one of these bags, I'll be using it for retreats and sew days! It opens up "boxy". You'll have to check out Craftsy under Patterns and then Bags.

Yesterday was spent with The Youngest! We went for pedi's and mani's! Had lunch together and chatted! It's always nice to see your adult children making their way in life. She showed me her new finished quilt. Hopefully she will pass a picture along so that I can show you all! She is a talented girl! Her boyfriend was telling me the plans for a sewing room for her! They have an extra room besides the guest rooms they have. He's already dreaming of having her sewing machine set up in front of a window and thinking about the shelving and drawers she'll need for fabric! Gotta love a man who supports a woman who loves to sew!

As for Chef...he was at home waiting for our new dishwasher! Maytag with stainless steel interior! Yipee! No more hand washing dishes! That is, he has been hand washing dishes since our dishwasher broke down. Don't forget, most of the pots are washed by hand anyways, but having to add the rest of the hand washing..... well, you don't appreciate these appliances as much as when you don't have it anymore! He's been great with my hand giving me trouble! It's nice to have the dishwasher back is all I'm saying!

Maybe after a bit of housekeeping today I'll be in the sewing room!

Happy Quilting Everyone!

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Just a little bit at a time!

I have a whole lot of these going on! I had to un-stitch one completed triangle because I sewed it on wrong, but then I worked it out. I had forgotten to cut that little notch on those triangles that go on the side -- so I made sure I cut them all. My finished square is not 4.5 --it is 4.25". 

- yes I made sure it was a scant 1/4" seam
- yes I made sure that the copy of the pattern was to size {made sure the little box measured out the way it should have}
- yes I cut all the pieces the way I should
- yes I have "pressed" the way I should

so.... now I will have to match the rest of the pieces to make sure they make the same size. I am sure it will all work out! It is just frustrating as all get out when you buy a pattern and it doesn't work out. Maybe it's the thread? Maybe the thread is too thick? Who knows!

Has it stopped me? NO! now I am anxious to get to the other pieces! It will work out I am sure. Sometimes we have to "fudge" a few things and we learn for the next time! I'll have some trimming to do, but that's never stopped me in the past!

The little green owl? He's my timer! I've been trying to spend a minimum of 15 minutes a day in my sewing room! That has been very successful! He motivates me!

I've been struggling with coming home after working all day and I'm tired. The last thing I want to do is "do" something else other than sit and let my mind go blank. I do enjoy quilting though and sewing, so I have promised myself 15 minutes...only 15 minutes out of my day.  I get great pleasure of hearing that timer go off and end up continuing to work after. Rarely do I stop until much later .. which is  great!

This latest quilt is for my son. It will take a while, considering all the pieces that I have cut, but I'm looking forward to piecing it all together!

I am waiting for my friend Karen to finish up quilting one of my mystery quilts that I made. I'll be working on the binding before long! I am almost finished the top to a scrappy quilt that will need to go visit Karen for the "treatment" on her long-arm!  

Maybe a couple of bibs should be sewn up and passed onto my little niece! So many things that I could do! I think I'm on the list to sewing up some curtains as well!

Stay tuned and set your timers!

Happy Quilting everyone!


Saturday, April 4, 2015

It's been a good day!

Nothing is better than being able to "make" for little ones! I think she's going to need these for Easter Brunch!

Reversible is good!

A little bit of batting and a couple of stitches around and done! Now I can bring these along with the carrot tea towel!

Hope you have a wonderful day with loved ones for Easter!

Happy quilting!

Happy Easter!

Passing on a little Easter goodness! I got two of these kits from my retreat, courtesy of Nimble Thimbles Quilt Club! Love, love, love!

Now I am new to any type of machine applique. That means I am trying out new stitches, new thread and of course what to do with stabilizer. This little project is Phyllis' fault!
 She tackled these at Retreat and said it was pretty easy! 
 Thanks Phyllis! I couldn't be happier with the outcome of these!

I had bought a wee bit of Tear Away a while ago - and had no idea where to start. There was a shiny side and a  sticky side. I put the sticky side down to the back of the tea towel and used my iron to press it a bit. It stuck to the fabric and not to my iron thank goodness!! Who knew! It didn't stick permanently though, but enough that it would let me stitch the pieces down. When I was done -- simple -- it tore away! [duh!] I have so many stabilizers and sticky papers that I have to start labeling everything! I do believe that I need to educate myself on these things! I am very happy with the outcome though! It was tons of fun and took about an hour and a half for each - which included tracing, fusing the pieces to the iron and then stitching around the pieces.

Then I thought, I needed to do the other one! Though on this one I started to stitch everything in phases. I stitched the leaves and then put on the next pieces and stitched those down. It turned out cute! I think I do need practice on my stitching -- but everything gets better with practice, practice, practice! 

Chef Murphy let me put one on the oven handle! We need a little Spring in the kitchen with all this miserable weather we have been having! Last night it was snowing again! Though not enough for it to stay on the ground, but chilly enough to want to stay indoors and sew! I feel like I accomplished something this weekend!

Happy Easter all! God Bless each and everyone!


Thursday, April 2, 2015

Love Craftsy!

I don't know if you knew...but I posted by Stash project with the baskets on a contest that Crafsy had. Remember this photo?

Well that photo went on to win one of the grand prizes for a Stash contest! How exciting! I got to pick a free class! I picked BIG TECHNIQUES FOR SMALL SCRAPS with Sarah Felke! Now in no way am I working for Craftsy, but I found Craftsy on my own a long time ago when they first started up. Why?

#1. I have very limited time to attend a class
#2. I am a very hands-on learner and do not do well with classes where a person stands at the front of the class and lectures
#3. Sometimes it takes repetition on new techniques for things to sink in!
#4. I can watch and work through a class on my own time -- even if it's 2:00 in the morning and I can't sleep!
#5. I get to take classes from amazing teachers without the big price tag.
#6. I can ask as many questions as I want and get an answer back from the teacher! {without those smarties pants out there sighing HEAVILY because they got it and I didn't!}.
#7. Did I mention "selection"? So much to pick from! Not only quilting, but knitting, crochet, gardening, baking.... you get the picture!

So check them out! Craftsy will let you sign up for free and then browse through. OH, and I forgot -- they even have FREE classes! Never been to Quiltcon, but want to know a bit about it without leaving your home? Check it out!

Well what topped the list today is a box that found it's way to my door from Craftsy! I won a box of Craftsy stash on top of the free class!  So exciting! Thank you Craftsy so much! Look at all the lovely fabric I get to play with this weekend!

What a lovely pressie! I think I'll be gazing at this for a bit and thanking my lucky stars!

Craftsy .. you ROCK!

Happy Quilting Everyone!


Monday, March 30, 2015

Spring is sprung, the grass is riz....

I wonder where the flowers is?

Trust me....the background crabapple tree blooms in late May! We are not there yet, but I sure do miss the flowers! Hexies that is!
My hexie box is near empty! Time to fill it up again for evening stitching!

I started with a photocopied sheet of hexies. Free on the internet. I then took 5 sheets of plain white freezer paper {I found this was the max that is easier to cut without hurting your hand)

I then cut strips off my photocopied page and attach it to a strip of the wax paper -- remember nothing is pre-measured. Just chop a width off your freezer paper - remember, 5 sheets thick. You then place a staple through these layers in the middle of each hexie.

When you have a whole batch, start cutting along the line. This is where the # of layers are important. With more layers, your cuts can be off, even by a fraction is enough that you don't get nice matching petals when you whip stitch them together. Some people at this point will put a hole punch in the center of each hexie to make removal easier. For me, it wasn't a big deal at the end to remove the paper. It came out easily enough!

Remove the staple, discard the paper piece, unless you want to use that piece and glue onto your strip of fabric. I don't use this piece because then I would have to take out my glue and glue each piece onto the fabric. Make sure that you have shiny side down onto the wrong side of the fabric. Remember you want to be able to adhere the waxy side to your 2.5" strip, or scrap, or whatever you are using. I find 2.5 strips easy to manage and store in my hexie box.

Then place each of the hexies along your strip and press down on the paper side so the hexie adheres to the fabric.

This is the important part Morgan -- do not be in a hurry or you will slice your finger off! LOL... I do not use a ruler, I just trim enough to leave about 1/4 of an inch all around the hexie. I am using my small rotary cutter as you can see.

This is what it looks like. I tend to cut a hundred or so of these and then spend my next hexie day as a "glue" day. 

I have tried all types of glue. You name it, I bought it -- but the cheapest is Elmer's stick glue. It washes out very easily and lasts a long time. It is also easy on the budget. It's up to you, but make sure that it is washable as you don't want the residue of the glue to gum up and when it comes to quilting time, or removal time, you don't want the wax paper hexies stuck on there! You can see that I am focusing the glue on the fabric, rather than the paper.

Use your fingers to press down the edges to the paper side of the hexies - remember the wax side has adhered to the wrong side of the fabric.

Make sure you do the corner as well.

You can see the I am getting some glue on my finger as well! No worries! it washes off! I want to make sure that I have the whole edge of that fabric so it will stick where it needs to! I've even glued hexies in the car while travelling through Portugal! This is the easiest step where you really don't need to watch too carefully! I also have a couple of those wet-naps in my kit so I can clean the glue off my fingers!

Closer picture so you can see some edges are narrower than the others  It's ok if they are a bit narrower and a bit wider! It will all work out when you start stitching! You can see the corners are nice and tight. Excuse the lack of manicure! 

This hexie is ready to go!

These were the different glues that I used. The ONLY difference is all three of these are about 3-4 dollars MORE than Elmers. You pick!

Fuzzy pile of hexies!

Voila! After sticking all of them together. Once the whole quilt top is together, then I start picking out the papers.

So my dearest Morgan -- now that you know how to hand-stitch! Guess you know how to put these together! No worries! I am STILL working on this one for you!

Happy Quilting everyone! What are you doing today?

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Retreat Love!

 I was all set up and ready to go! I was at the end of a table, which I love! I love sitting next to Trish! She's an incredible quilter and creates some amazing bags! Here's a couple of them. I am sure the colours are not quite right, but you can imagine the work that went into these!

When we arrived, our seats were marked by these cute little treats! I  understand that Trish and Michelle worked on these! Michelle also had a Fabric Bingo game for us! Wish I would have taken a photo of the cards! What a clever idea! (lots of work though I am sure and much appreciated! Thanks ladies!)


Our room was off the lobby. See the chair with the black sweater? That's MINE!!! ALL MINE Bwahhhh haaaa haaaaa!

Beautiful colors! Forgive me for forgetting the name of the quilter who made these! Phyllis' daughter!

Vera's gorgeous quilt for her mom-in-law! Love the rich colors in this!

Vera's next project. All from her stash!

  1. Three baby quilts in one weekend! WOW! Now she's Val is one prolific quilter!

Phyllis and her daughter just came back from a cold retreat in Vermont! Not to worry! They were all bundled up for the retreat, but the snow surrounded them! Take a look at the beautiful quilt that Phyllis completed! I can just imagine this on a comfy, poufy bed with lots of pillows! 
"Can you bring me my slippers my dear?" with a bejeweled hand directing him!

Phyllis was so worried about this horse! She didn't start the outlining at this point -- but it's just breathtaking already! She was working this into a place mat for her brother who loves horses! She kept at it and sat across from me. She stuck with it and the end result was worth it! 

Here's what I found at the Sugar Pine Company on our way home! Now I know how to to it!

Of course while you are shopping for that "one" thing, there are those other "things" that jump out at you and have to follow you home!  Look at those weenie scissors! I'm going to put those right into the hexies kit! It has a little cover that you just pull from the handle and cover the tips! (P,S. I think I have a scissor addiction along with my fabric addiction, my thread addiction.....)

Phyllis' daughter whipped up this cute little tea towel for Easter! Look at the cute little tail!

Cindy and Karen also had a little store set up! I took myself right over to the table to "look". You know what that's like! The looking turns into fabric fondling, and then you start a little pile of things you just "HAVE TO HAVE"...then out comes the wallet! I couldn't resist getting a couple of those tea towel kits! One's "carrots" and the other I think are "eggs". Just something little to whip up before next weekend for a hostess gift!

I couldn't walk away from the bright coloured fabric! I had my little ironing station set up beside me. I brought my trusty Mary Ellen's Best Press! I found the little bottle put out a great little mist for those smaller pieces that you need to starch!

The moral to my story -- take a look at your sewing machine carefully BEFORE you leave! I didn't have much chance to do much more than piecing a bit. I had my walking foot on my machine. Of course I had to take the shank piece off that you snap your feet on -- AND I didn't  pack that little piece! I was pouting a bit -- but made the best on it and finished all my blocks for my scrap quilt! Another hour or so and I should have a top ready for Karen to long-arm! YEAH!

 Check out my Retreat Packing List ! I think I need to update it!
                Love the colors of Michelle's baby quilt!
Cheeky little whales are grinning!
Michelle is quilting up a storm for all those Spring babies!

We played "Name the Block" -- I guessed 6 out of 12! Look what I won! Little chocolates, a mini charm pack, some needles and chocolate goodness! Look at the cute little carrier! 
How delightful!

Check out Nimble Thimbles Quilt Club on Facebook! It's quite the place to visit and be inspired!

PS -- and a great BIG thank you to Michelle's hubby who set up hours and hours
 of music for us to sew by! Such a change from another retreat I went to with head
banger music blasting me out of my seat !

I felt just like a weekend binge to Vegas!

Now repeat after me..... "What happens at RETREAT ... STAYS AT RETREAT!!!"
My thanks to Nimble Thimbles Quilt Club, Cindy, Karen, Michelle and Trish 
..and everyone else who put so much time and work into this Retreat
 to make it a wonderful weekend!