Thursday, June 28, 2007

Mini Road Trip

Well I had my little shopping fix today, went to Lynden Washington and shopped at Tangled Threads and then over to Folk Tales, they are both very nice shops. At Tangled Threads I bought a Buggy Barn pattern and 3 FQ of 30's fabrics which you can see I've already started to cut up. Folk Tales is my favourite store, she has all the latest patterns, books, and lots of hand dyed embroidery thread. She had a display of Crabapple Hill's newest patterns "Pillow Samplers" of all the seasons with beading, "Frilly Ribbons" needle case and pincushion and "Pocketbook Charmers", they were all very cute but I held back since I have so many of her designs that I haven't stitched yet. I always find something I like and get so much inspiration from this cute tiny store. The store is part of her house, the entry is at street level and her house is up above, not a bad commuting. Too bad she doesn't have a website to show you. I did find some things I needed to purchase, 2.5 yds of beige with tiny blue stars and another 1 yd of beige with small clusters of flowers. Also there was a patten that found it's way into my bag, Miss Rosie's "Going Buggy" pattern. I should visit Folk Tales more often because I love to go there.

When I got home my book I ordered arrived "Prairie Children and Their Quilts". I really love these small quilts. This book also has some interesting history on life as a pioneer.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Wool Applique

I'm not sure what I've been doing this week, a little of this and a little of that, mostly a lot of not finishing anything. Started hand sewing a binding on a quilt, working on my pincushion swap, sock #2 is waiting to be knitted and my sewing machine has been in the shop, not that should stop me because I have another machine I can use. But it's a good excuse anyway.

I thought I'd show a couple of felted wool quilts I made in 2004, yes I did both in one year. The first quilt is queen size by Quilt Country, called Midnight Garden. The flowers are felted wool by Moda and I hand appliqued them on black flannel background. I machine quilted this myself and still don't know how I managed with such a heavy quilt. All that wool!

The second one is folky and primitive called Wooly Flower Sampler by Starry Pines. I tea dyed the white flannel background and hand appliqued the felted wool flowers and embroidery. The wool was hand dyed so it has much more colour variation with each flower. I also machine quilted this one, can you see the wavy lines in the sashing??, that's where I used the wavy ruler (see previous post). The background of all the blocks I did stippling, my favourite for filling in spaces. This is a wallhanging size 44x52.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Arbor Window Quilt

I've finished the top to my "no name" blocks. Thanks to Pam my quilt will now have a name "Arbor Window" wahoo. She found this name in EQ6, I think it's a perfect name. I made mine a little different than Libby's, she made 16 blocks and I did 12 blocks. She did a funky piping for the inner border. I might try her method on another quilt but on this one I did a 1" inner border. I'm not sure yet if I'll do the scalloped border. I have a "WaveEdge" ruler which I might use instead for a wavy border. I never did use this ruler for what it was intended to be used for. It has a book that can be purchased separately. Instead, I've used the wave ruler for a border on a baby quilt and it worked very well. And I didn't need to cut the binding on the bias. I've also used this ruler to mark wavy lines on my quilt for machine quilting.

Here's a close up of the quilt, I really like the background fabric. I don't know if you can see good enough but the beige is circles and dots all over. It's really nice fabric with the small check squares.

In my garden the roses are now in bloom. I have 5 roses bushes around the deck and 3 are blooming now and 2 will come in the next month.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Special Surprises

Friends are like might have a whole collection, but some are certainly more special than others. Isn't that the sweetest saying, it was in the card I received yesterday from Darlene. And I was the recipient of really big surprise box of Apron Strings fabrics, Holly Taylor charm packs, several patterns and the cutest pincushion. As you can imagine...I've been drooling and fondling this package since it arrived. Whatever am I going to make with this lovely pile. Darlene this is absolutely the best gift, I "Thank You" dearly.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

No Name Block

I was looking for this block pattern for months and wasn't able to locate the name of the block or a pattern anywhere. I guess I wasn't looking in the right place because I found it on Libby's blog, check out her baby quilt. Libby is a sweetie and didn't mind sharing the cutting sizes with me. I don't know if you can see but the red is a small check fabric and the cream fabric has tone on tone little egg shaped circles and dots. I've done 7 blocks, 9 more to go. Does anyone know the name of the block? It would be nice to know what to call my block.

My first lace pattern sock is from Knitty, they are called Monkey Socks, I'm using Lana Grossa yarn with cotton and wool, nice combination for a very comfy sock. Still have one more sock to make.

Happy Quilting.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Pincushion Exchange

I was visiting May Britt this morning and saw she had signed up for a Pincushion exchange. I too love pincushions and I'm very excited about joining. I quickly clicked on the link to The Country Cellar and joined right away. This will be fun opportunity to get that special pincushion. Maybe one of you will be my swap partner, that's if you decide to join.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Redwork Ladies

I've been busy trying to finish these ladies and just when I thought I was done, my thread ran out. Madge in the bottom right corner is missing 2 squares of satin stitching in the border. How could that happen, I bought several skeins and since I love redwork I always have extra on hand. So out I go to Loving Stitch to pick up more DMC 498. I love all the samples they have in the store, it's so tempting to buy a cross stitch pattern or two. I was browsing around and found some hand dyed floss in a variegated red for $5.50, wow that's expensive thread but guess what I bought it. I looked at some vintage yellow linen that was on sale but I was very good and put it back since I knew I wouldn't get around to using it and it too was expensive even on sale.

These patterns are from Red Brolly by Bronwyn Hayes. There names are Libby (top left), Louise (top right), Cynthia (bottom left) Madge (bottom right), check out how Darlene is doing on hers.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Birds of a Feather

I'm so happy I've made some progress on my blocks. I'm using fusible applique for this quilt, I don't usually do fusible but I have so much hand work I couldn't bare thinking of doing another one at this time. I use Heat N' Bond light and before fusing to the fabric I cut out the centre's, leaving about a scant 1/4" around. This removes the stiffness of the fusible on the finished project. I also hand applique the stems with bias maker because I don't like the flat look of the vines and stems with fusible. All this is a little fussy but faster than all hand applique. The edges are done with matching thread and a very small zig zag. I carefully match the thread colour and get the embroidery weight so the thread on top is not too heavy. It all works for me and I like the outcome.

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Forgotten Projects

I just love how blogging has given me incredible inspiration to do some things that I have long forgotten. I purchased hand dyed wool to make the strawberry basket from Need'l Love's book called Strawberry Threads at least a couple years ago now. I looked at that wool and fondled it for a long time and then I guess things got moved around and put away, which made me loose interest in the project I planned. This week KnotGarden showed us her strawberries from the very same book, well she inspired me to get the stuff out of it's hiding place and get going on it again. I made 3 strawberries yesterday and cut out most of the pieces for the basket. Isn't this exciting.....

Here is the table topper I made with Roman Holiday charm pack while on my retreat. I carefully didn't show the girls at the retreat because I'm undecided on whether it looks good or not. Using all the fabrics in the charm pack without adding a focal fabric makes it look really busy. Besides the fabric line has showed up in stores yet, not in my area anyway. Any comments good or bad is much appreciated. I think maybe it'll be a good table topper.

Sunday, June 3, 2007

Back Home Again

The drive to Naramata was spectacular, we saw several deer and a black bear along the drive, sorry didn't get pictures. We arrived Sun afternoon and were greeted by the ladies from Edmonton. Three of the ladies drive 10 hours the Saturday before and then another 2 hours Sunday just to come to the Naramata retreat. They also stopped to pick up Louise, she founded Quiltaholics 30 years ago, and is now 83. She moved away from our area and can't attend the regular Tuesday meetings anymore, so it was really nice for her to come. After our hugs and hello's we got straight into quilting. A typical day was up early for breakfast, take a walk before it gets too hot, sew, laugh, eat lunch, sew, sew, a drink for happy hour, eat dinner and sew, laugh, and sew some more. We did get some sleep in there as well. And little break for shopping at Poppins Quilt Shop on Wed.

Here is a view of the building we sewed in, it's directly across from the beach.
We had somewhat of a view of the lake from our sewing room, the lake is behind those trees.
I was very happy to have completed more than half of my Double Wedding Ring blocks. They still need to be trimmed but I'm very happy to have so many done. I also worked on my redwork and a little bit of knitting. I'll show the redwork later when I get it made into something, maybe another bag is on the horizon :-)
The Quiltaholics have a challenge each year for the retreat. This years challenge was to make a quilt using only 2" x 3 1/2" rectangles which is from the book Successful Scrap Quilts. All the quilt pictures below are using this one rectangle, it's unbelievable how different each one turned out. I didn't have the book so I just couldn't get the inspiration to make one.

I'm off to take care of a sick cat, Jenny managed to hurt her paw while I was away. Took her to the vet yesterday and they needed to put her under to remove the nail. Just before I left for the retreat she was at the vet for a kidney infection, so she's really not feeling well. Poor little Jenny, she's getting old. This summer she will be turning 15 years old.