Sunday, April 6, 2014

Random

This weekend was glorious...blue sky, sunshine...I think winter is backing down a bit and spring looks to be on the way, hooray! I came on intending to do a wrap-up post for the Q1 Finish Along that started with the list back here. Except, I was too late to get in on the linky party which is my own darn fault because I'd remember, get distracted (SQUIRREL!!!) and then not get my post written. My list had consisted of four projects and in the end, I got two of them finished:


That original list was written nearly three months ago and it makes me laugh at myself, a little, when I think about how my priorities have changed. At the time I wrote the list I was consumed with one of the projects but I think that may have been the last time I worked on it; I finally gathered up all the blocks and put them away in a bag, knowing I will come back to them at some point in the future but right now, I'm just not feeling it.

I have, however, been blessed with time to work on quite a few things. I have some bee blocks. some small projects for around the house, and some swap goodies:


One of the projects I love best is the one it took me the most attempts to get "right". I was honoured and humbled to be invited to join The Traveling Quilts Canada and this is what I came up with for my starter blocks:


I've been enjoying the photos of all the lovely triangle quilts popping up all over the Internet of late and decided it was time to try it for myself. It didn't seem like quite enough for a starter block, so I came up with the idea of making a block that was somehow significant to who I am or where I'm from. I found a paper piecing pattern for the iris (because we do love irises in our prairie gardens) and it was just the right contrast to my triangles. These blocks are in the hands of the next quilter now I am look forward to what will become of them as this next months transpire.

If you are interested in joining in for the Q2 Finish Along you'll need to visit The Littlest Thistle starting tomorrow (which might still be today, depending what time zone you are in). I'll be making a list, maybe even a realistic one.

Yay for spring, yay for weekends!

e.

Friday, March 21, 2014

The Flip Side

One of my FAL projects for the first quarter of 2014 was a table runner made of Lizzy House's latest fabric line, Catnap. I like Lizzy's designs. They are graphically simple and fun and I love the colours she puts together.

I was inspired to make a reversible runner - after all, you have to put fabric on the back anyway, right? I used this runner as inspiration and I am really happy with how it turned out.

This runner is for my daughter and as it happened, she kept coming into the sewing room to ogle the scraps left over from this project. It wasn't what I thought I might do for the reverse side but it's what she likes, so who am I to argue?


 I auditioned several fabrics for the binding but in the end, the gold Catnap print with the coral accents looked great with both sides of the runner and I am really happy with how it turned out.


Dear daughter likes it too!

e.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

HAPPINESS Remixed Geese

It is very exciting to be able to show our groups latest finish. This weekend, I had the honour of completing the Happiness circle's January quilt.

In January, I asked the members of our circle to send me flying geese units inspired by the free quilt pattern available here. Erica of Kitchen Table Quilting designed this quilt and I think she did a beautiful job. I am so grateful for the collaboration between talented designer and generous fabric manufacturer - thank you both for sharing!

The quilting design is something I kind of made up on the fly but I'm so glad I decided to try it. It is just straight rows of loop-de-loops. I decided to start by quilting every other row I had marked and in the end, I felt that was enough. The back looks really neat (too bad I didn't think to get a photo of it!).

Besides the Happiness hanging in the tree above there is the happiness that comes from having no more snow on the ground! On Friday, it was bitterly, horribly cold and there was lots of snow outside but we had a fierce chinook on the weekend and now the snow is gone! Yay for that and thank goodness for pretty quilts to distract from the uninspiring and drab browns of winter. I was thinking this quilt looks like a bit of spring, hanging in the tree.

Please, snow, stay away. I'm ready for some colour outside!

e.




Saturday, February 22, 2014

Flying south

That's exactly what we did last week and it sure was nice to get away from the cold. Hubby and I plus one of our daughters and her husband went to visit a giant people trap built by a mouse. It was loads of fun and we all wanted to stay; we contemplated declaring our room as our embassy but we figured that probably wouldn't end up working out so well for us so, alas, we journeyed home, but a piece of our hearts remains at the Happiest Place on Earth and with the warm, sunny weather!

Back to reality. Yikes, it's cold! But, we are very thankful we have not been enduring the constant snow and frigid temperatures being experienced in so many parts of Canada and the US this year. My mind must have been thinking about the wisdom of the birds that take refuge in southern climes during the chilly months because I have had flying geese on the brain for awhile (that's not a medical condition, in case you are new to quilting and wondering!) and they continued to inspire me going into my most recent swap adventure. A few weeks back I was honoured to receive an invitation to the Skinny Pinny swap over on Flickr. Take a look at this pincushion; did anybody else do like I did and smack their hand against their forehead saying "how come I never thought of that?" I think it's brilliant and it is easier than pie to make (no, really, it is). I am constantly pulling out pins and laying them on the desk right in front of my sewing machine only to cringe when they (frequently) do a little jig as a result of the machine vibration and land squarely on the floor in front of me. When this swap is done I will have a proper place to keep them. Just for the record, I do have a magnet-pin-holding-doohickey, but I keep it off to the side because it's a bit bulky.

I checked out my partner's Flicker stream and blog and concluded she likes to use lots of colours together and that made me think of a rainbow. Then I wanted to come up with something else to include in the package and I thought "what sewist or quilter doesn't like receiving fabric?" so I made up a little rainbow of fat 16ths to go along with the pincushion. I also wanted to include a treat and Skittles - where you can "taste the rainbow" - seemed like a perfect match.

It's all wrapped up now, waiting to head south. Sure wish I could sneak myself along with it!

e.



Wednesday, February 5, 2014

WIP Wednesday - the (almost) wordless one with the terrible pictures

This photo...fails to inspire. Winter. Evening. No light. My sewing/laundry room floor. I promise, this is prettier in real life than it looks.



I don't need to explain what is terrible about this photo, do I?

Linking up with WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.

e.

Monday, February 3, 2014

A Charley Harper pillow

Over the course of a couple evenings last week I made a pillow for my living room using a fun Charley Harper print I had purchased specifically for that purpose. I knew I wanted something very simple and I figured the print was interesting enough on it's own, so in the end, I did not piece anything, I just cut a square of fabric and called it good.

I wanted to make the top interesting, though, so I came up with a quilting design that mirrored the angle of the leaves in the print. I put my ruler down along one "line" of leaves and marked a straight line. From there, I just drew lines 3/4" apart in both directions until my square was covered. I like the denseness of the quilting; it adds a nice body to the project.

I wanted a zipper closure for the back which I hid under a flap of contrasting solid fabric.

It's sitting on the couch now, offering itself up, occasionally, as a throne for one rather indulged beagle. I like how it turned out although I am going to change out the pillow form inside. I have a preference for feather-filled pillow forms and since nobody in our house is allergic, I use them in all my pillows. As it happened, I didn't have one on hand but I plan to pick one up (and a couple extra) next time I make it to Ikea (they are a good price there).

Another project done early in the year. Yay!

e.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

WIP Wednesday

I am excited to be able to have something to post for WIP Wednesday. It isn't that I haven't been getting a chance to sew; it is more the case I don't think or remember to go outside on the weekend and grab a few photos of my projects. Or else the weather has been too uncooperative when I actually did remember I wanted to do so. It's a Canadian thing to talk about the weather, by the way, and here in Alberta, we like to say if you don't like the weather, just wait fifteen minutes.

Today's WIP is a tabler runner I am working on. This is the first top all complete; I say first because my plan is to make it reversible.

I'm not planning to make the reverse side coordinate with the top. After all, what's the point of having a runner that can do double duty if you make both sides pretty much the same. I plan to give this to one of my daughters so I am leaning to a Christmas-y palette for the other side. Since she is really just starting to feather her little nest I think she might be able to get the most use out of having something that can also help her decorate their home for the holidays.

So there you have it, that's my post for today. I look forward to seeing what everyone else has on the go.

Linking up to Let's Bee Social and to WIP Wednesday.

e.

                                              WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

 
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