Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Threads of Your Life

Finished up Bonnie Hunters Mystery Quilt Clue 5. I just love the scrappyness of the quilt. I feel kind of liberated as I have never just poked around in my stash for "any" blue, orange , yellow or green and just used it. I think it is working! I love Bonnie's ideas and I am sure that this quilt is going to be one of my favorites.

Here is some playing around with some of the pieces.

I want to show you a couple of quilts I am working on. I have two nieces that are going to have babies in February, so of course those two little ones need something to cuddle up with. For sure one is a girl and the other is going to be a surprise. I have two girlie quilts - one complete and the other a WIP.The first one uses the "Less Than Traditional" method. It was presented at my guild by Charlie at Quilters Haven - I used a Care Bear charm pack as the theme fabric. It was the first time I tried this method and I do not think I did that great of a job. Some seams were so thick that my machine skipped stitches - I had to had sew a lot of those seams. But all in all - hay - I love to sew, so I had a great time making it. 

The faux cathedral window design is easy but it looks complicated.
The quilt is warm and soft and I think the colors are nice for a baby.
I am also working on a quilt that uses The Sweet Life - Small Truths Panel. I shashed it with coordinating fabrics. It is so fun. I got it all sewn together I just have to get the courage to quilt it. I think I will try echoing the main designs.

I also have a great friend from college who's daughter is also going to have a girl. While on my last fabric shopping spree, I picked up some Dr. Seuss fabric on sale. I have decided to fussy cut it and make wonky squares. I can not wait to get started.... these babies won't wait.

With January 1st so close I am going to have to dig myself in as when the Kitschy Kitchen post hits, I know what project is going to grab my attention and time. That quilt looks so cool.... (see the button in the column to the right) Why don't to join in? I think it is so generous of Kristy - her designs are wonderful.

"Stitcher's Garden" by The Stitch Connection
85" x 93" 
 Also here is a quilt I just finished. It was a class I took at Moores with Mary Yoder. This quilt was such a great learning experience. It had so many techniques and uses of different feet. It had cording, couching, bobbin work, applique, 3D sewing and it used some embroidery functions of my Brother machine.
Showing "pin tucking" in the heart center -
 first time I tried "twin" needlework.
All these were great techniques to try and now I feel capable of adding these to any of my quilts.
The stem used a chenille technique. 

Couching around the white background.
Wishing you a Happy New Year and may all your UFO's be finished in 2014. 

Monday, December 23, 2013

Spending hours in the sewing room

I finished the 4th clue for Bonnie Hunters Celtic Solstice. This time is was 120 4 patches. I am so glad I am keeping up - with Christmas just around the corner.

I have been busy with working on a all the small gifts you have to give to so many people in your life who make a difference. I have such great employees, neighbors and freinds. I wanted something that was home made and that they would actually use. I just love mason jars and I have seen many mason jar recipes so I went on line and found a few I thought were appropriate.

I made 25 in total. Cranberry Hootycreeks, Hearty Soup Mix and M&M Cookies. All the recipes looked good as far as ratio of ingredients and instructions.
I brought one over to my neighbor Eileen and that night she called me up and told me that she made the Hearty Soup and if I wanted some for our dinner (as it makes about 15 cups!) I said "Yes" of course. I was really wondering if the soup was any good and this was my chance to try it and see.

The instructions tell you to brown a pound of ground beef, reserve the colored noodles, add 12 to 15 cups of water, simmer for an hour. Then add the noodles and beef and simmer for 15 more minutes.

I did enjoy the soup BUT I think it you could improve it a couple of ways. I think instead of ground beef - chopped chicken would be better. If using the ground beef I would add a can of chopped tomatoes and some oregano. Anyways I was so pleased to see the gift used and now tested.

Seeing how I had knocked out most of my weekend projects I decided to pull out my $3.00 garage sale find I have been working on. Oh about 3 weeks ago I found a garage sale on Craigslist that touted a lady who quilted for 40 years had died and donated her sewing room to her church. Well - being the penny pincher I am - I had to go. I was amazed at her stash, literally 75 to 100 unfinished projects and boxes of notions, craft supplies and books. I picked up 7 of her UFO's, some fabric, rulers, buttons, and many little bags of cut fabric some sewn into flying geese, HST or organized for lets say an I Spy Quilt. All in all I "only" spent $110.00. It filled the back of my car!

Here is the result of one of the $3.00 bags I picked up:
Pretty sue it is a Lynn Mann Mystery quilt! Shown here it is 60" x 84".
Most of the clues were completed - 2 blocks were completed so I had a good idea of what the quilt was to look like. When I started to put together the rows, I realized one block was missing... and no extra fabric to be found. So if you look at the center accent block - this is what I came up with with the pieces still available. I love it and I actually think that that block adds interest to the quilt.
On the inset photo is showing the pieces I still have left and the 2 fabrics I chose for the boarder and binding. I am going to use the 4 flying geese as diamonds in 2 of the corners. I will use the other little scraps somewhere too.

I will surely post about all the wonderful project I got at that sale. They should keep me busy for a while.  Seeing what happens to someone quilting life after they are gone was very saddening. The church yard was full of boxes, everyone digging into them, all the organization being taken apart. Within the 2 hours I spent 50 percent got scooped up for pennies on the dollar. It made me look at myself and tell myself to finish things I start an to control my stash more wisely. LIFE.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Late Night Sewing

Late night quilting. After finishing Clue 3 I decided to work on a BOM quilt from my LQS The Quilting Bee in Orange, CA. It is month 9 and we are all working on an Amish inspired quilt. I finished this block
 I like the way this one is going - bright colors, traditional patterns. I am thinking about finishing the quilt differently than the pattern we are following. Probably set the blocks on point and put some patches in between.  We'll see......

I am getting ready for the Sew Kitschy - A (free) Paper Piecing BoM that is going to start in January. It is put on by Kristy @ Quiet Play. I just love her patterns and this one is right up my alley,

I went shopping (I was dragged by my friend Gayle) at L&M Fabrics in Anaheim last Sunday - everything in the store was 20% off. It was the first time I had shopped there and boy I was amazed by the store and how much fabric was there - and their prices EXCELLENT too. I picked up A LOT of fabric.... some neutrals for the BH Celtic Solstice Mystery and then a bunch pictured here below for Sew Kitschy. I do like the blues and red color pallet that Kristy has chosen.... I chose 1930's and some coffee cup print, toasters, and orange crate. I have a hard time with color selection sometimes. My stash, while large is always a challenge to coordinate.

Anyway here is my assistant helping me get home from my L&M shopping spree!
Wow what a ride it was!
Enjoy your day!

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Celtic Solstice Mystery Clue 3

Today I have been working on Bonnie Hunters Celtic Solstice Mystery clue 3. Making 25 cute little yellow and orange pinwheels. I have always loved pinwheels!

While working on them I noticed that my center seams were quite thick and felt like a hard ball. At that intersection not only are there the 8 seams comming together but there are seams from the HST too. Bonnie mentioned spinning the seams to allow the fabric to lay flatter. I have never spun seams before and her tutuorial was ok but I still did not get it... so off to YouTube. I found a really great 3 minute video that answered my questions.
Robin Wilsons - Tuesday Tip: "Spinning Seams in Quilting"

Here is link to Bonnie Hunters website: Celtic Solstice Mystery