Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Some Show Quilts

Stars and Pineapples, in the background the pine tress on a snow covered hill. From traditional to modified abstracts this quilt show had everything. I think this is the last of these photo's. I take so many pictures at times that I find them tucked in between other subjects. My little point and shoot gets a workout, I tell you!

Heart of my heart, who knew there were so many interpretations of the simple heart?

This collage of stars was much more beautiful in person. The colors so appropriate for the Fall season. 

  • I am 'beavering' away on my projects when time permits, there is not much time the last three weeks. Don't see any great windows of time opening up any time soon.
  • I am hoping to get outside with my camera today. My leaves have fallen in bursts, right now it looks like a leafy wonderland, on the ground, need to be moved, need to hire that job out.
  • Lucy is doing better, thank God. I was so worried about her. She still looks for Auggie but seems to be settling in. I have the urge to head to the shelter to find a companion for her but I just can't do it yet. 
  • A new Williams Sonoma catalog arrived yesterday, there are fall themed dishes that have been calling me for months now. Hold me down, I have no more room for more dishes, And yet, I could stack them in a bathroom.......................see what I mean?
Botanical Pumpkin Dinner Plates, Set of 4 Botanical Pumpkin Dinner Plates, Set of 4

Monday, October 20, 2014

Happy Monday Quilt Campers!

This is the 2015 Three Rivers Quilters Raffle Quilt, I plan on winning this just so you know. 

We are talking color here, rich, saturated, solid color. Visit Sew Fresh Quilts here.
Made by Kelly of My Quilt Infatuation, visit her blog here.

This morning the Fall sunshine is struggling a bit to break through the clouds. While our leaves are full of glorious color my thoughts advance to the bleak skies of Winter. What better way to lift the chill of Winter by planning your Spring and Summer sewing projects?  Purely by accident I came upon these three examples that could be potential candidates. Please link back to the blogs for more eye candy. The one above by Kelly may be offered as a pattern.

I know, I know, who is planning for Spring now? Well, I am. It takes me a long time to decide on a design, choose the fabric and sew it all up. I want to be more focused this next year and buy the fabric I plan to use, not just fabric I like and not just to accumulate more stash. The best way for me to do this is to have my sketches and outlines when I am out. Once I am in the shops I admit that I get a sort of fever and want everything I see! So I have decided to try to be a little more focused...and not so excited. Stay tuned for news updates on that score! It will certainly be a new track for me. Mr. Sewtopia frequently remarks that he knew it would be like this even before we married. Wise man, he just accepts the inevitable.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Bloom Where You Are

We have had an odd Summer/Non-Summer in Western Pa. Now this little beauty decides to bloom. I brought it in the house from the front porch two weeks ago. Expecting to cut it back and relegate it to a basement window that gets good southern light during the summer, I got busy. I watered it and when I came home from the hospital one day there were blooms! Glorious coral blooms. It just goes to prove that just when you think you have entered a state of dormancy the right light, the right inspiration and a little water changes the dynamic that feeds the soul.  

*wait till you see my Foxglove. All summer nothing, then about 2 weeks ago a stem or two pops through the mulch then a tall spire with purple flowers, now four more spires are forming. Then another plant is now bearing leaves. Hopefully, the weather will hold so that they can fully bloom. Like I said, a Non-Summer! 

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Oodles of Noodles

Always looking for a way to re-purpose the mundane I came upon these when unpacking a box. Some time ago I had read where some inventive sewists buy pool noodles to store their fabric. They simply wrap the fabric around the noodle and stack the noodles. Great idea, no wrinkles.

So here they are, they are much smaller than pool noodles, approximately 2 inches in diameter and about 10-12 inches long. You know I could not toss these!

My wide Ric-rac was lounging around in a pile on my desk, now it is neatly wrapped around the noodle and secured with a pin. I will be wrapping noodles all day now. They will store nicely in a basket or plastic tub from IKEA or even just stacked like cord wood on a shelf. (Like I have a free shelf.)

I am planning my first Spring quilt as well. These little posies will be part of that. Ah, the Go cutter, what did I ever do without you?

*just remember that YOU pay for all that packing material in the post and in boxes. Some of it is good enough to find another purpose, some is not. Just put on your thinking cap and see what you can invent!

Friday, October 17, 2014

Don't You Just Love a String Quilt?

There is something so pleasing to my eye in the String Quilt. I had made a few and moved on to some other patterns. But since I do a lot with 2  1/2 inch strips I decided to collect them and make another when the collection got big enough. This one is a really pleasing combination with the white strips providing the structure and the yellow just popping all over. This was made by Karen, of the Ladies of the Cloth, formerly referred to as the Sew and Sews, for a Guild service project. It is so colorful, happy, fun. She even mentioned that her Mr. felt it was her best quilt! Karen makes stunning quilts, I am not sure I agree with her Mr. but this one did indeed inspire me to do another one, now from Jelly Rolls.
A scrappy close up.
I used a paper foundation of deli paper. Yes, you heard correctly, no cold cuts here, just strips of fabric. We have several potential sources in our area. Check the big box grocery/all purpose stores like Sam's Club, Costco, or GFS. I cut my sheets down to 10 1/2 inches square. I used a white strip down the center and added to each side, The fabric is a Mirabella Jelly Roll from another project and guess what? I found two layer cakes in the same fabric hiding under some Christmas fabric. I was able to make 12 blocks from that Jelly Roll and will use that as a center medallion of sorts.

I have no idea why these photo's have an orange off-cast! Reminds me of some old Polaroid ones I have from the 1960's! Just wanted to give you the idea. 12 blocks done.  

Thursday, October 16, 2014

The Way We Were (are)!

When you are fortunate enough to own a Vintage machine or two do you wonder about the Sewist before you who used this machine to make clothing for her family, quilts for her beds, possibly as a source of income? As I clean my machines and oil them I try to respect their history and use them now and then to keep them happy.

Many bloggers do a Throw back Thursday post to recall earlier days in their lives and highlight special posts on their blog. When I see old photo's I like to examine the details and imagine the history involved.  I recall early internet days where a handful of online retailers hosted message boards where like- minded sewists and quilters could share ideas and inspire each other. I met many friends there. Ellen Moore Thompson was one such retailers. What a great forum that was.
At one point we were all enthused with Redwork. I still am. Handwork done in the evening or quiet moment or two in the afternoon has a calming effect at the end or the middle of a busy day. This sweet little towel was my gift in our annual Valentine's Day exchange. My dear friend (an expert needle-worker)  Jean was my swap partner. Over the years we have communicated and shared many stories. The next time I visit the UK I will surely make time to visit.   Friends formed by this modern form of Pen Pal type relationship are very special. Our lives are enhanced daily by the connection we share.
I finished many of these little floral squares last Winter. They are waiting for some sort of assembly
 One of many, I am reminded of many partially finished projects....this whole throw back thing may not be the best idea!

Handwork is one of those skills that I find deteriorates if not practiced regularly. I have done little hand embroidery in the last year or so. I want to get back to that after the holidays. The chill in the air has prompted me to pick up my knitting needles again, that is a sort of handwork, isn't it? 

*Poor Miss Lucy is lost without her brother Auggie. I am hoping her spark returns soon. Sweet Lucy.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

I am Here, Right Now, in my Head

Hello dear quilting friends. I hope your Fall season has offered inspiration and some nice ideas for Holiday preparations. I have been searching the patterns and the webs for you and have a couple new ideas for the next couple weeks. I am a little behind, of course, but I only have two big projects this year. It is the little gifts that I so enjoy making. Personal and specific to that person. Starting next week I hope to have the information all pulled together to share. If I am a little behind, please forgive me, I am back to full-time nurse again and my time is limited.That is OK because I think I may be using my time more wisely, funny how that works, isn't it?

Escapism, is a well known form of coping mechanism. Many of us use this little mind trip to visualize projects and examine color schemes. When I saw this photo I instantly thought of a Landscape Quilt. This one will stay in the memory banks.
new-york-obsession:  Central Park Near The Pond, NYC

I didn't manage to fit any sewing time in the schedule for the last couple days. As a result I am experiencing a little bit of a withdrawl twitch. I did sort out some fabric that had been hiding since it was washed. I prefer to wash yardage when I buy it and somehow this fabric was washed, dried and folded with the table cloths waiting to be ironed. Folded right up in their lofty damask loveliness. I want those ready for the Holidays. I need to get a move on.

A classic bow tie in classic blue and white.

I really like the dark background on this quilt, it makes the blocks just pop!

Plans for the week: (notice the optimism here, things are strained with Mr. in ill health and everything else going on.)
  • join the Batik blocks then figure out what kind of border or what ever to do with them. That will require a shopping trip because trust me quilters, I've got doodle here in the realm of Batiks. 
  • make the rest of the foundation string blocks from the Mirabella jelly roll.  More design work on that one. I have been sketching, it will be a gift. 
  • PJ's, bottoms, redraft the pattern for a short little person and make a test pair. She wants to learn to sew. We need a sample. 
  • Aprons, need to get on that. Mine are worn so much they are thread bare. Not a good look for an apron connoisseur. 
  • I have decided NOT to do Bonnie Hunters Mystery Quilt this year. There is no time and I don't need any more deadlines I cannot meet.
I need to tell you all about Jennifer L. Scott's new book, "At Home with Madame Chic : Becoming a Connoisseur of Daily Life. Just when I was starting to lose hope for the current young adult population I discovered this young woman. She is bringing back traditional values for the work at home Mother.  She does not shop in pyjamas, her house is clean and organized, she does not use the television or video games to raise her children.   She cooks nutritious meals, maintains adult friendships, and lives within her budget. How great is that? I am 3/4 of the way through the book and I must say that it is all common sense but very well organized and well written. At the end of each chapter she include suggestions for beautiful music. A sequel of sorts to her first book,  "Lessons from Madame Chic-20 Stylish Secrets I Learned While Living in Paris,"  it is a light and pleasant read.
Color and Inspiration here, no affiliation.  Take a look at what you can imagine with paint chips!