Sunday, October 17, 2021

Slow Sunday Stitching

Welcome to Slow Sunday Stitching where we celebrate all the wonderful benefits of the art of hand stitching! I am so glad you can join us this week and I have some photos to share of an outdoor visit I had with some quilting friends this past week. It was a sunny day, we had a lovely visit, and they brought some hand stitching with them. 

We had a knitter - just look at that delicious yarn! It looks like bits of candy in the yarn. This will become a child's sweater.

We had a quilt being bound by hand. It is so close to being a finished project to be enjoyed at Christmas time.

I was doing some embroidery on a tea towel, and I somehow accidentally snipped the green thread in the letter  'e', so I have to go back and fix that.

We had a hand piecer working on the Border Creek 2021 sew along. She's making the whole quilt by hand! 

And we had a bag of hand pieced blocks that one of the stitchers brought to show us.  They belong to her neighbour who found them in her mother's belongs after she had died. The neighbour wants someone to finish the quilt for her. Should I volunteer?

We spread the pretty blocks out on the patio table and we all fell in love with these pretty 6 pointed stars. If I tell you that they are all slightly different sizes, likely made over several years, and varying about 1/2" in size from side to side, do you think I should try to tackle putting these together? I want to simply because of the story that goes with it, but will it be stressful? Impossible? A regretful decision? I would love to hear your thoughts on this dilemma. 

Today I'll be working on my embroidery again. What are you hand stitching this week? Please link up your post below and share your projects with us.

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Thursday, October 14, 2021

Mid month UFO report

When you want to machine quilt a project and you don't know what pattern to use, you just have to start somewhere.

So I started quilting my October UFO in the centre block.

This is the design that happened from stitching continuous curved lines. It's a little wobbly in places, but I just kept on going.

Then I moved to the pumpkins and stitched a few lines with grey thread in the centre stars, then made 3 echo curves in orange thread on each side of the pumpkins.

When I was on my last pumpkin I realized that my Peter Pointer fingernail had poked a hole through the top of my Machingers. That means I have done so much quilting that I have actually worn them out! Time for a new pair!
I'm ready to quilt the bat blocks next, and am happy that I am on track to finish this before Halloween!

Monday, October 11, 2021

Auditioning Sashing

Since light green is the Rainbow Scrap Challenge colour for October, I started playing with some leftover green HST blocks. I don't remember what these pieces originally belonged to, but they jumped out of the box and wanted to become little QST blocks. 
How do I know this? 
Because they told me of course!

I started sewing them together and when it was time to trim them all to the same size, the blocks measured 1 3/8" unfinished and will finish at 1 1/8". So little and sweet!

As I began to sew together the QST blocks, they started lining up into columns with similar friends. 

This is not what I thought I was making, but these blocks are bossy and I was just along for the ride.

Today I am auditioning sashing fabrics and trying to make it big enough for a placemat. 

Here are two options... the light green sashing on the right (maybe too light?) and the crackle batik on the left.

What do you think about these choices? A medium green on the right (maybe too dark?) and the same fabric as the block spacers on the left. I like this one but it's a stripe and there's not much left so I can't control those long dark lines, but maybe that's okay too?

How about this one? On the right side is a light spotty one (maybe too olivey?) and on the left is the crackle batik again, with a possible border and/or binding choice.

The more fabrics I audition, the more confused I get. Please help me decide and give me some feedback in the comments.

Linking up to Design Wall Monday and Oh Scrap!

Sunday, October 10, 2021

Slow Sunday Stitching

Welcome to the weekly link up for hand stitching enthusiasts! 

Today is Thanksgiving here in Canada and I am thankful for so many things, including this international community of enthusiastic and talented hand stitchers! Whether you post your projects in the link ups, or you encourage others in their long term, slow stitching endeavours, or you are stitching along quietly on your own hand stitching projects making your corner of the world calmer and more beautiful, we are thankful for YOU!

I started a new hand stitching project this week to celebrate the wonderful fall weather. Melisa at Pinker 'n Punkin Quilting posted a free fall embroidery design which I thought would be perfect for my front door. When I saw Diann's version on her blog Little Penguin Quilts I was inspired to get going on my own little quilt.

I traced the design with my Frixion pens. I really like these for tracing embroidery designs, but apparently they have all died except the teal colour. Does anyone know why this happens? I haven't used them much and there should still be lots of ink in them.

I am hand stitching the design using 3 strands of DMC floss and have backed it with a scrap of batting before stitching. I am trying this out to give the project more stability instead of using a hoop. 

The pumpkin is embroidered using the back stitch. Pumpkins are orange so that thread choice was an easy!  Now I am auditioning other thread colours to use. 

What are you hand stitching today? Have you started a new fall project? Or maybe you are finishing an old one? Link up your post below and share your slow progress with us.

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Saturday, October 09, 2021

Scrappy Saturday


A little progress has been made on my RSC Full Stop punctuation sampler. These are the orange dash blocks for September. I made mine slightly different since I'm not sure of my layout yet.

This year I have been making 4 blocks each month and they are all different sizes. I put them on the design wall to see what it's looking like and I got very excited about this project again!  Of course this is not my layout because it's too long and narrow, but it has started up my creative process to think about various layout possibilities.

 I think I will have a lot of fun putting it together at the end of the year. 

Linking up to the weekly RSC party and hope to see other scrappy sampler blocks being made

Wednesday, October 06, 2021

One Monthly Goal

There is nothing on my design wall this week as I am trying to focus on finishing.

My October goal is to finish my Bats and Boos mystery quilt in time for Halloween. The quilt is now pin basted and it's ready to quilt.

One of the steps I enjoy most about machine quilting is picking out the thread colours. I never quilt with just one colour - why use only 1 colour, when there's a whole thread box with a beautiful range of colours?!?

Here are the threads that I'm planning to use for this project. Black for the bats, gold for some of the  pumpkins, orange for the dark pumpkins and the bobbin, and grey for the background. Okay... now I need to decide what designs to stitch.

Linking up to One Monthly Goal

Sunday, October 03, 2021

Slow Sunday Stitching

Welcome to the weekly hand stitching party!

The temperatures here are cooling down for the beginning of autumn and the leaves are just starting to turn colour. It's my most favourite time of the year!

If you didn't read about our Slow Sunday Stitching friend Deanna's quilt finish - click here. I took it to the flower clock for a photo. Soon it will be too cold for the flowers, but Deanna's Daisies will last all winter long!

This week I enjoyed hand stitching the binding on my monthly placemat. September's colour was orange and I did some of the stitching outside under the light of the setting sun. The sunset colours on the orange fabric were very pretty. 

I took a photo of my Clover needle threader which I adore and take with me everywhere I go. I cannot thread most needles these days, even with my magnifying glasses on. This needle threader can thread most of the needles that I use for quilting, but it can be finicky. The thread has to be taut when laying across the threader, and sometimes it takes 2 or 3 tries to get a tiny needle threaded. 

I have also been doing some secret hand stitching on a round robin project that I don't write about on my blog because the big reveal won't be until February. I used my Sewline air erasing marker (love it!) to mark some stitching designs and embroidered with perle cotton.

I think it's cool enough to get out my oldest UFO and get it ready for another winter of slow stitching! I have been quilting it off and on for 6 years now! What will you be hand stitching today?

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Saturday, October 02, 2021

Scrappy Saturday

Orange was the RSC colour last month and I made another sewing machine block for my collection. This is a free pattern from the Fat Quarter Shop and I tried it in the 6" size this time. Each block has 16 pieces to fit together like a puzzle. So FUN!

You can see my aqua block that turned into a mug mat here. And my blue sewing machine block jumped into a round robin project. So although I have made several sewing machine blocks, they keep disappearing from the RSC project box!

I also made a light green machine in anticipation of October's colour and here is my machine collection on the design wall. Purple is a 3" block, and orange and green are 6" blocks. There is also a 12" pattern but I think that's too big for me! I love these blocks and will continue this project into 2022.

I also added a few orange blocks last month to other RSC projects... a few more waffle blocks and one Easy Breezy block. I can't seem to stop sewing these Easy Breezies even though I have more than enough for a quilt. It's not logical or explainable but they continue!

And I felt like making a few more mini arrowhead blocks for that collection. 

I'll be happily digging into the light green scraps this month since it's one of my favourite colours!
Linking up to the weekly RSC party

Friday, October 01, 2021

UFO Finish - Deanna's Daisies

In March of 2010 I was a last minute substitute for a guild speaker and did a presentation on my UFO problem - you can read about it here. (We won't talk about how the UFO problem is even worse than it was back in 2010!) 

One of the UFO's that was put up for adoption at the 2010 guild meeting is this blue and yellow QST quilt top. It was made from swap blocks in the early 1990s and although I thought I was clever with the layout, I just never really liked the poor thing. And no one at the meeting liked it either! But my friend Barb took it home and mailed it off to  Deanna, my self declared "northern blog stalker".

Well Deanna took this ugly duckling and turned it into a swan!

She appliqued large daisies, and machine quilted it with loops and flowers... and it turned out so pretty!

Here is a close up of a daisy so you can see how she attached them. The petals are stitched around the outside to fasten them to the quilt top. And then they are stitched 1/4" away from the edge as part of the quilting design. I love the translucent effect!

And even the backing is made of pretty blue and yellow fabrics!
I already slept under it to give it the sleep test... only  happy dreams, so it's good to go to a new home!

This quilt will be donated to my local guild's comfort quilt project that provides quilt to victims of sexual assault receiving treatment at our local hospital.

Now I'm excited about the treasures hiding in my UFO closet just waiting to become something beautiful... maybe!

Thursday, September 30, 2021

Monthly Placemat

For this month's Table Scraps Challenge I used up some 1.25" strips that were on the cutting table. I had fun playing with how to cut the strips sets and had no idea what I was going to end up with.

These are the 3.25" blocks I ended up with!

I had them on the design wall for a few days and every time I walked by, I moved the blocks around. This is how they were on sewing day, so that was the final layout. It's a very scientific process!

Then I had some fun with machine quilting using my walking foot and some orange thread. I stitched right down the centre of every strip, and did not do any planning or marking. 

Each line was eyeballed and "good enough" was my mantra.
Some of the lines formed diamond shapes and I was really pleased with how that looked.

This photo shows the pretty orange backing fabric and  the quilting design.
I enjoyed hand stitching the bindi
ng in the evening while the sun was setting. Maybe this is going to be a drink coaster and not a placemat!?!

NO... it's a placemat and it will join my collection that I will donate to Meals on Wheels in time for Christmas distribution.

Here's the 2021 collection:

Linking up to the Table Scraps Challenge,  the Rainbow Scrap Challenge on Saturday, and Wendy will link me up to the mini quilts challenge at Constant Quilters.

Monday, September 27, 2021

Design Wall Monday

I have been working on my 
summer mystery project that my local quilt guild hosted. Here it is before the last border.

Somehow I made 40 extra (wrongly cut) HST blocks and wanted to use them up in the last border.

And here is the finished quilt top, with the extra blocks in the outside border. Because of my error in a previous step, I just have enough fabric left for the binding.

The pattern is designed by Judy Eckhardt. Her pattern has a proper 4" border around instead of a 2" border that includes all of my mistake blocks!

Now I am thinking about how to machine quilt this project.

Linking up to Design Wall Monday

Sunday, September 26, 2021

Slow Sunday Stitching

Welcome to the weekly hand stitching party!

I am definitely looking forward to some slow stitching today. How about you? I hope you will take some time today to relax and to put a few stitches into your project. 

We have had a lot of rain lately, and the forecast for tomorrow is sun, so I plan to enjoy some outdoor stitching. As you can see in the photo, I have finished stitching the words on this tea towel, and have also done the martini glass. Today I'll work on the shaker and see how much I accomplish. You can also see the plethora of tomatoes from my little garden. I wish some of the other plants had done as well as the tomatoes did! I have already canned salsa and pasta sauce, and I'm getting tired of toasted tomato sandwiches. 

What will you be hand stitching today? We love to be inspired by your projects and hope you will link up your blog post below.

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Saturday, September 25, 2021

Scrappy Saturday

This is the last Orange week at the RSC. This month went by really fast and I don't think I made enough blocks for my RSC projects, so today I will do an inventory and keep working on orange to fill in the gaps.

This week I reevaluated the Waffle Project. There is one more  column of red blocks that I didn't have enough room for on the design wall. I made some decisions about a possible layout, size and blocks needed to finish this quilt by the end of the year. It's such a great scrap buster using up 1.5" squares. And it definitely has a shortage of juicy orange, so I'll work on that today.

Linking up to the Rainbow Scrap Challenge

Monday, September 20, 2021

Design Wall Monday

I have been enjoying the Bats and Boos mystery quiltalong. I have 2 friends who have already finished their version, so I was inspired to get sewing on mine. I wanted more orange in the centre so I used the pumpkins in a night sky print for the centre star.

I finished the centre block today and love how it turned out. It used up several scraps of black and it was a very fun block to sew. 

Here are all the blocks on the design wall. I am ready to sew the 9 blocks together and start auditioning border fabrics.

And in a rare episode of quilting self restraint, I am not starting the new Fat Quarter Christmas mystery because I haven't finished this Halloween one AND I haven't finished my Christmas UFO of the month yet. So look at me being all self disciplined!

Must. Stay. Focused.

Linking up to Design Wall Monday