3/27/2014

Class Project and Bunny's Arrival

Stack N Whack

For demonstration during the class I taught today, I decided to get a very early start on Halloween by using this fabric:


to make my hexagon kaleidoscopes. 


 And this is what I made: 


It is a 59" long tablerunner. It will fit down the center of our dining room table. . . .OR 
I could make it up as a twin size bed runner for a child's room. 
I have enough of the Halloween fabric left to make a few pillows to go with it. 

How do you think I should purpose it? 


BUNNY PINCUSHION

I also got an email from Karyn that the bunny pincushion I sent to her in the swap arrived today. She said she LOVED IT and does not think she will use it as a pincushion. That's ok, I am sure the bunny can sit near her sewing machine giving her tips. 


I want to thank Bea for hosting this pincushion swap and coordinating all of us. We start the next round of swaps very soon, I got the swap chart today. YEAH!

Thanks for visiting and 
Relax and Quilt!

3/26/2014

More Bunny Pincushions, Stack N Whack and Cut Loose Pattern News

I have been "hopping" around the studio sewing table having a grand time sewing these bunny pincushions. Here are the latest 3 that I did today. I think I like the black one best of all.




I finished 4 today. One went hopping on her way to a friend of mine. Another friend asked for 5, so that is what I am working on now. I am using my felted wool and am pleased I did not have to purchase any fabric for the project. 

The pattern I have used has served me so well. I just can't get over how easy these can be made. See my post HERE for more information on the pattern.


STACK N WHACK CLASS
I am prepared for the Stack N Whack table runner class I am teaching tomorrow. This is the EQ image of the project. Of course, everyone will have their own fabric choices, so they will all look different. 


New Pattern in Publication
I made the final approval on my newest Cut Loose pattern. I am so excited with this pattern because it is actually two quilts from one pattern. There is almost no fabric waste and there are tremendous possiblities in how it can be made up. When it is released, I will definitely make a big announcement here. I think within a few weeks. So keep your eyes open.  

Happy Quilting and Crafting!



3/21/2014

Sewing for a Baby Gift -- Bowl Cozies

I have been busy sewing late into the evenings for the past two days. Tomorrow I am attending a baby shower for our cousin's daughter. I had to make a few items. Of course, I wrapped the present without taking a photo of what I put in it. But it did include these microwave bowl cozies. 


I also made some burp cloths from this free burpies pattern. I did not make mine elaborate with bias binding and since it is a boy, I did not use lace. I used flannel on both sides and stitched around the edge after turning them right side out. I could make one in about 10 minutes, so I was stitching away and had 6 done in no time. 

Pincushion Prototype

I am drafting a pattern for a monthly pincushion class I am going to start at The New Ewe. 


This one uses 2 charm squares and half of one strip from a jelly roll--and a good amount of stuffing. I am going to use a HST technique I read about on She Can Quilt's blog. It is #4 Make 8 HSTs from 2 Squares. I like teaching quilters new ways of doing things. I have tried many of the HST techniques on this blog post, but this one was new to me, so I figured it would be new to others as well. 

EQ Photo Fun Blog Hop Coming

I am participating in the EQ Photo Fun Blog Hop hosted by Carol FUN THREADS. It begins April 14 and ends April 16. There will be 8 of us posting various techniques to use photos in EQ. So, do check out the fun that starts soon. 

Nancy Zieman's Autobiography

I am reading Seams Unlikely by Nancy Zieman, thanks to a friend who loaned me her book. Nancy's story really is amazing. I am halfway through the book and have enjoyed each chapter (which none are very long). It is amazing to think about how and what she has accomplished in her lifetime-a true pioneer in the sewing world. With blogging, there is a new frontier to explore and I am having a great time exploring its surface! Can't wait to finish the book.

What is your next project? Mine is cleaning my studio so I can start a new project.



3/18/2014

Tuesday Archives at Val's Quilting Studio

I am a bit late linking up to Val's Tuesday Archives, but I was working today and had evening meetings. But better late than not at all. 

The two themes Val has chosen this week are Animal Quilts and Award Winning Quilts. 

I will begin with the last catagory. The Flowers on Green quilt, below, was made for our President's Challenge at the Tall Pine Quilters Guild a few years ago. We had to use scraps of mostly green fabrics. There were measurement requirements. My quilt is a wall hanging measuring 18" x 31". I made yo-yo flowers and used leaves from some artificial flowers. I had fun piecing the quilt background influenced by a technique in a book by Weeks Ringler and Bill Kerr.



I never expected to be the First Place Award Winner, but I was. It was an honor that has been bestowed on me one time. But I will persevere and maybe in some future year I will have another award for a quilt. 


Now the other catagory is Animal Quilts.
My husband's pool table cover made with a
wildlife panel in the center. I designed in EQ7.
You can find the EQ link HERE.

I made a 3-D turkey with fan blades cut with the
AccuQuilt, a yo-yo body and a stuffed neck and head
made from a carrot shaped piece. It is a small
wall hanging. 

I designed this footprint baby quilt to use the bear
fabric as the outer border. I have the pattern for sale
on Patternspot.com

The final quilt for today is my 30s Reproduction
fabrics with a center panel of kittens in a basket.
This was for a guild challenge using 30s prints.
While I thought it was great, there were others
even more spectacular.

Thank you for stopping. I hope you are a quilter who chooses to enter one or more of your quilts in a contest. I found that the first one was the toughest for me to enter, but it got easier after that. And while I don't win awards, I feel my reward is knowing that I tried. 



3/16/2014

WoB Blocks, Pattern Update

WOMEN OF THE BIBLE BLOCKS
I have finished two more Women of the Bible Blocks. I am a bit behind of sewing the blocks, but I am fitting little bits of sewing time into my busy days. I think the next week will be less hectic and I might be able to get more sewing into my days.
I took the fabric that I found in my box of 5" scraps and made Rachel's Double Cross block. 
I went to my scrap draw of greens and blues and paper pieced the Palm block for the study of Tamar.

Pattern Update
While still cannot reveal the pattern, I did get an email from Cut Loose Press saying that the pattern had been accepted and sent on to the proofing committee. I am excited and as soon as it is published, I will post a photo of my quilts on my blog. 

The sunshine we have had for the past 3 days has melted some snow, but it is still cold outside. I am glad I can sew in a sunny, warm room. Hope your days are sunny and filled with happy sewing experiences.  

3/12/2014

Ruffles, Ruffles and More Ruffles

Ruffles
Oh, my, I have been visiting the other blogs to see what everyone has RUFFLED up! So many wonderful ideas and projects. I want to start making some of everything! 

I must thank Amy and Madame Samm for gathering so many of us to ruffle our way into this blog hop. I thought it sounded like a great blog hop. I wanted to see what I could come up with. Also, I wanted to share some ruffling tips with others. I have learned more tips from others, too. 

A few tips to share 

1) When sewing stitches for gathering, lessen the top tension on the machine. Use a thread that is a bit heavier in the bobbin, like hand quilting thread, #30 or # 40 weight, (even dental floss if the fabric is thick). Use two colors of threads to know which is the bobbin to pull. Anchor the top thread at each end and pull the bobbin thread to form the ruffles. I do this by placing a straight pin at each end and winding the top thread in a figure 8 style around the ends of the pin. Since the bobbin thread is not pulled up into, or close to the fabric, it pulls very easily. Tie the ends or secure in the straight pins. 

2) For very nice ruffles such as on a dress or pillow, sew 2 rows of gathering stitches, one a bit less than the seam allowance and the other 1/8" away from those stitches on the raw edge side of the ruffle. Follow the same steps as in #1 above, but pull both threads as if they were one. 

3) After gathering the ruffle the length needed, sew a smaller stitch 2.5-3.0 at a regular tension setting to hold the ruffles in place so they don't move as you pin or sew.

4) If you are making long lengths of ruffles, sew the gathering threads in smaller sections such as 22". Leave long thread tails at the start and finish of the smaller sections. Secure every other set of thread ends in pins or tie them. Pull the loose ends of each small section to form the ruffles and then secure when they are the length needed. This helps because you are not pulling yards of thread through yards of ruffles and reduces the possibility of breakage. 

My Project!

So what did I come up with? A Christmas decoration! (Why not start early?)


9" tall Christmas tree.

I have lots of fabric. I had a styrofoam cone (base 4", height 9"). I 
measured around the cone to estimate the length of ruffle needed.



I started cutting 3" x WOF strips and got 7 from my fabric. I cut the 
fabric ends at 45 degree angles and sewed the strips together, 
end to end.


I folded and pressed the fabric strip in half lengthwise with the right
side out. I folded the starting end inside to hide the raw edge.


I sewed gathering stitches as described above and sectioned them 
off about every 22". 



I gathered the entire length of the strip section by section. Pulling that 
loose bobbin thread. 


When completed, I sewed a smaller seam to hold
all the gathers together.


I began wrapping at the base, pinning with T-Pins.
I angled up a bit when I came to where I started.
I spiralled around the cone up to the top. 


I cut the extra length of ruffles, leaving about 1 1/2" to tuck inside the end
to hide the raw edge of the end. 

I made a circle cap (and it really looks like a hat on top) to cover the 
end of the styrofoam. I sewed two circles together, cut a slit in the 
center to turn it right side out. Pressed the edges.
I pinned around it to keep it in place and tied a bow
to cover the pins. I will probably think of something else later, but for now, it works.


I thought it might be fun to sew some rick-rack or beads on the folded edge 
of the ruffle for decorations. I might try making the ruffles wider at the bottom










3/11/2014

Tuesday Archives

Today I posted under in Tuesday Archives in the Apple catagory. But, as I am going back through my blog posts from the past, I see I have many more applique projects than I thought I had. So I am posting this blog under the Applique. Val has the Tuesday Archives up for only 3 days, so I hope you can get there soon to see all the great projects people are remembering they made and are re-posting. 

Well, in my applique catagory I found quite a few. The three below are patterns I designed. They are available on PatternSpot.com  
Wavy Panel Project
  
Love You

Footprints Baby Quilt














I went through a few months where I was making Dresden Plate or Fan blocks and trying new ways to use them. They are appliqued onto fabric.

One of my first project from 18 yrs ago, maybe. 
A test of a new Dresden idea for me.
A sunflower, all appliqued. 


Dresden fans around the kitties in 30s fabrics for a baby quilt.

Cut the fans with an Accuquilt. Appliqued them onto the background.
Add a body and head (both stuffed) and had a turkey.
Then there was the snail I designed in EQ7 for Bea's
 Applique Blog Hop; which was fun.

Finally for now, the quilt I designed for The Quilt Show Challenge back in 2011. 
Path to Love and Peace. It is a large wallhanging that I leave in my breezeway.

I hope you have fun looking at all our archives. It really is good to go back and see what we have done over the years. 

3/05/2014

Bowl Cozy Winner Chosen

I never used a random generator, so I thought I would try it rather than put the names in a bag and draw one. Here is the result from the 3 comments left the other day: 
And here is the winner of the cozy: 
I will be contacting Janarama and getting a bowl cozy out in the mail. 

Be sure to join me and the many other bloggers for the Think Ruffles Blog Hop that starts today and goes through March 14. Here is the list of blogs to visit:

March 5th

March 6th

March 7th


March 10th
March 11th

March 12th  

March 13th

March 14th


3/03/2014

I Have Mail?

PINCUSHION SWAP

I joined Bea Lee for her newest pincushion swap and on Friday this beautifully sewn English Paper Pieced pincushion arrived all the way from. . . England. Kay sent me a lovely note telling me EPP is her favorite quilting method and she did this entirely by hand. She used some of my favorite colors. 


In the package she included two small fabric pieces and a tiny bag of buttons. I have no idea as of yet what I will make with them; but I think something for spring.


Thank you very much, Kay!

NEW PATTERN PROGRESS

My longarm quilter delivered the quilt to me. I will bind it tomorrow. I still can't show you what the quilt looks like. My goal is to submit this pattern to Cut Loose by the April 7 deadline to have it debut at The International Quilt Market in Pittsburgh. I will give some hints: Squares and Circles and numerous ways to create with the pattern. I have one published Cut Loose pattern HERE

THINK RUFFLES BLOG HOP STARTS SOON!
It is only days away! There will be ruffles abounding. I will post my ruffles project on March 12. I have made nothing like this before. I think it is an easy project that should be fun for everyone to make! Amy from Sew Incredibly Crazy is heading up this blog hop. Here is the blog hop list: 

March 5th


March 6th

March 7th

March 10th
 
March 11th

March 12th  

March 13th

March 14th
 



Come back for the Ruffles Blog Hop! 

I will have information in a few days about the EQ7 Photo Fun Blog Hop April 14-16. 



Also, if you have not read my blog telling about my SPUR OF THE MOMENT GIVEAWAY, please take a moment to check it out. Leave a comment by 9 PM EST on March 5 for a chance to win.