Friday, July 29, 2016

Friday is Circa day and FNSI!

I have been enjoying making the Circa 2016 blocks each week since the sewalong began in January. This week's block was called "Birds in the air" although that's not the pattern I know by that name. Here are the new blocks on top and the blocks from last week on the bottom.  I wonder what we're sewing today?!? Hop over to Temecula Quilts to see the new blocks.

Tonight some quilters are coming over to party sew. There are only two more days left in the month... I hope I make some progress on my UFO of the month!

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Clarissa was a Superstar

That's the name of my new leader-ender project, but I will probably end up calling it "Clarissa". You can read more about the inspiration here
I redid the math on the block pieces since the first block I made was too small. I finally got the four patch hourglass blocks to be the size I wanted. 
The plan is to cut out scraps whenever they appear in my sewing room, and to always have a pile of triangles beside my machines to sew at the beginning or ending of every bit of sewing I am doing on my primary projects. The key to being successful with leader-ender projects is being organized, and having all the pieces ready to sew together without any thinking required.

I experimented with different ways of constructing the hourglass units and decided on using the Companion Angle ruler to cut the triangles. (To read Bonnie Hunter's lesson on how to figure out the math click here.)  This ruler is quick and easy to use and gives me an hourglass block that works with this design.
Now I am ready to roll!
Each block needs 36 hourglass units, which means I need to cut 144 triangles to start!

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Aurifil BOM

On the 15th of each month the new Aurifil block pattern is posted. This month is an unusual design called "Sparkler" by designer Wendy Sheppard.  You can get the pattern at the Aurifil blog here. Here is my version in my favourite red and white fabrics. It was fun to sew and I can totally see this as a great Rainbow Scrap Challenge quilt block... can't you?!?

This pattern has lots of small pieces, so you can use up some smaller scraps making this block. I cut the whole block, pinned the pieces together and very carefully sewed each quadrant. It would be very easy to get the design mixed up which would result in overuse of the seam ripper!
To see more fun variations on this block pattern, hop over to Pat Sloan's link up.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Log Cabin Loonies

Julie is hosting a fun Log Cabin Lunatics link up where quilters can post about their log cabin projects. 
I have only sewn 1 log cabin block recently. It is one of the July Shop Hop blocks, and probably was my favourite one of all the patterns. They give you the fabrics, so all of the 1" scrappy strips were precut for me! I did pick a different background fabric from my stash and impressed myself with how the horizontal pattern in the fabric lines up fairly well across the block.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Design Wall Monday

While I have been visiting a few of the stores on this year's July Shop Hop and collecting the new blocks, I have also been working on my blue blocks from last year's hop. 
Here are 9 of the 15 blocks on the design wall. If you want to see all the creative layout designs hop over to the July Shop Hop photo page.

The top right block was a bit of an ordeal. I traced the pattern onto freezer paper to paper piece. There were 8 components to the block and this photo shows one of them.
So I traced all 8 pieces and started to sew them without any difficulty. But when all the pieces were ready to assemble, I realized that because of the reverse issue in paper piecing I didn't have the colour placement right, and the white and light blue were mixed in some of the blocks. I thought I would remember which colour went where since there are only 3 colours, but apparently I didn't! It was a reminder to always write on the pattern which colour goes in each section, because obviously I can't rely on the old memory bank anymore!
Here is the finished block, and you can see if you look closely that I had to sew some scraps together to get big enough pieces to use after all that sewing and unsewing of awkward angles.
C'est la vie!
On to the next block...

To see more design walls, hop over to Patchwork Times.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Slow Sunday Stitching

It has been a very busy summer so far at Kathy's quilts. The last three weekends were spent in 3 different cities, with a lot of driving in between, lots of visiting of family and beloved friends, and of course slow stitches have been made in every location. 
Life is Beautiful block #26

I finished the hand embroidery on block #26 for Life is Beautiful. If you have been thinking of buying the pattern for this project, I finally found a source in Canada. There were two complete pattern sets for sale at The Quilting Bee in Fonthill (no affiliation, just a customer happy to see the patterns available locally!)
I finished this block while visiting with the Fabric Piranhas this past week. They are quite a bunch of crazy quilters and I am so honoured that they let me join their adventurous group. 
They are all avid hand stitchers so of course we spent time stitching in the gazebo and talking about our projects - the ones we are currently stitching, and the ones that we are dreaming of starting. In this photo we have Deanna stitching hexies, Barbara ("I don't like blue") with an embellishment project, Louise hand binding her Indian Orange Peel (more on that later this week), and me starting the embroidery on block #27. It was a wonderful (but always too short) time of laughter and stitching.

What are you hand stitching? Treat yourself to a little creative vacation today, take a few stitches on your project and link up below to share your slow progress with us. 


    An InLinkz Link-up

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Scrappy Saturday

Another Mad City Mama block is finished. This pattern is from Bonnie Hunter's book Adventures with Leader & Enders. It's quite a labour intensive block using 148 scraps! But it's really fun if you like scrap piecing (which I clearly do!)
You can see the first 4 blocks of my collection here

I finished this block while visiting with some quilting friends who call themselves the "Fabric Piranhas". They are a little scary and totally hilarious! I will post more about them tomorrow, but today I wanted to show the photos that I took of my block while staying at Louise's house. In one of her gardens she has an old treadle base turned into a table. The sewing machine is long gone but the base is still in great condition.
See how the actual treadle says "VERTICAL FEED" which means it was once operating a Davis sewing machine. I wonder if my herd will ever include one of these rare machines?
To see more scrappy projects being created, hop over to the weekly link up at SoScrappy.