Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Darlene's Mystery Parts 4 and 5

I love this quilt!  Over the past few days, I caught up and finished both parts 4 and 5 of Darlene's Mystery Quilt, a free quiltalong that she is creating for her local guild and for the rest of us in Blogland.  Darlene is such a creative gal! She blogs over at Quilts by Darlene and inspires us regularly with her projects. Now we are patiently waiting for Part 6 which will be available in July. Here is my quilt top showing the additions of parts 4 and 5...

Part 5 consisted of 48 log cabin blocks, made using a quick and easy method, while the Part 4 border was to be a combination of piano key units and HSTs. I went the fast and easy route and just used piano keys. Here it is before the log cabin blocks were added.

It's interesting to see how the trees behind the privacy fence have started to "leaf out" with the warmer weather on its way. 

I have a little secret....a couple of days ago, when I finished parts 4 and 5, I posted pictures of my quilt top on Darlene's Flickr page HERE. As I was admiring everyone else's quilt tops, I noticed that my corners were not the same as the others...can you see what I did wrong?

Just look in the can tell I added my rows without connecting the corners properly. So of course I then went back to my quilting chair, removed all the borders, changed a few blocks around, and my corners went from this

to this...

I am now a happy camper. The picture at the top of this post shows my rebordered quilt top. Darlene's Mystery will be put away for awhile, and now it's time to bring out Country Charmer. 

The monthly link up for the Country Charmer Quiltalong is fast approaching so hope you will come back in a few days to share your progress here. If you've finished your CC quilt, and have linked up in the past, please link up with us again showing your finished quilt...we love to be inspired each month!  CC quilt designer Lynne never stops sewing and designing at Sewn Wild Oaks , so make sure you see what she is up to

For those who link up that day to share their CC progress with us, there might be a giveaway, just saying, so see you in a few days. Haven't started yet?  No time like the present. Patterns can be ordered HEREThe parade of finished CC quilts or quilt tops is not until the end of November so there is lots of time to join or finish! 

Thanks so much for coming by. It's a great day for quilting!

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Doll Quilts and Schnibbles

Another rainy day in paradise, so a perfect time to fill you in with how I've been keeping busy. Woodworker Hubby was busy too...he recently finished painting Ana White's Farmhouse Doll Bed. I thought it would be a perfect way to display some of the small quilts that I've made. I grabbed my camera and started clicking...

The quilt on the bed is another version of Nellie's Nine-patch that I made this week from Tara Darr's book "Simply Charming".  I found a box of vintage linens that my Mom had given to me many years ago with a few items that worked really well for the pillow and the sheet. 

A few more projects just hanging out...

and of course I had to pull out the doll cradle too, but there's no room for a doll!

I had such a busy week in my sewing corner, really, but I can't show you most of what I made...there are just too many secret projects at this time of the year.However I did finish a Schnibbles quilt.You're going to think it is the May 2013 Vintage Schnibbles challenge quilt, but it is actually the May 2012 Schnibbles I started last year. It is now a finish!

I machine quilted in the ditch but left the geese to fly on their own and backed the quilt with a floral print. The batting is a new brand for me and I just love it! It is called The Tuscany Collection, 100% Bleached Cotton by Hobbs. I purchased mine at the Mira StitchnPost and would imagine you can find it at your LQS.

Had to try the quilt in the doll bed...a little large, though, and folded several times...

Many thanks to Jennifer at Curlicue Creations.  I recently won a giveaway from her blog and received Volume 7 of Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks and a pattern designed by Ms. Jennifer herself..she's a pretty talented gal. Check out her collection of cat blocks HERE

So what's up for today? I'm off to tackle part 4 of Darlene's Mystery quilt, or maybe I'll catch up with the latest four blocks of Barbara Brachman's Grandmother's Choice blocks, or perhaps I'll start block 5 of the Blogger Girls Block of the Month, or pick out my blue fabrics for this month's Rainbow Scrap Challenge? So many choices...all I know for sure is that it's a great day for quilting!

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Jelly Rolling Along

Last weekend I attended quilt workshops put on by owner Jacquie and her staff from the Mira Stitch 'n Post which is located in Marion Bridge, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. Friday was the the jelly roll quilt you see in the picture below, and on Saturday it was the paper-pieced place mats and table runner you see to the left of the quilt. 

The quilt shop is almost two hours from where I live, but the best thing about this workshop is that Jacquie and members of her staff came to my home town with fabrics, sewing machines, and lots of expertise!  They transformed the meeting rooms of one of the local motels into a quilting mecca. 

We shopped and shopped and shopped...


Then we sewed, and sewed, and sewed...

By the end of the day, I had a pretty good start on my jelly roll quilt. Thanks to Jacquie's on-site LQS, I had lots of jelly rolls to choose from, so I picked the Wild Berry Bali Pop by Hoffman.  

At the end of the day, I piled everything in a tote, brought it home,  and continued sewing in my sewing corner this week. 

Lots of chain piecing in my sewing corner...

and the piles grew and grew. Do you see the diamonds created in the blocks?

I laid out the blocks on the floor, and started with a plan, but then realized I didn't have to worry so was just a colourful, happy bunch of blocks that would be very content wherever I put them! 

I added the border fabric I had purchased from the shop that day.  I used twenty-four ten inch blocks, four rows of six, making a quilt approximately 50" x 70". And now the flimsy is a finish...on a very windy day...

The sun peeked in and out of the clouds, changing my quilt colours a tad...

Instructor Jacquie called her sample quilt, "Broken Glass", but I may call mine either "Stained Glass" or "Mish Mash"!  I love the bright colours...the purples, the pinks, the oranges and greens...they just make me smile!

Jacquie told us she found the pattern for the quilt available free online through 3 Dudes Quilting. Jenny at the Missouri Star Quilt Company has a great video on YouTube where she shows the quick method we used that day to make the blocks. She calls it the "Amazing Jelly Roll Quilt Pattern by 3 Dudes" and you can view it HERE

Woodworker Hubby made a rack for me last year that I could use to take pictures of the quilts and tops outside. I wanted to be able to take pictures of any size of quilt so he made the rack so I can hang them at three different levels. All I do is pin some fabric tabs to the back of the top or the quilt, put a metal rod through the tabs, and put the rod at the appropriate level. It works great...except when the wind is blowing through the boards! 

I had a lot of fun sewing this quilt, and I bet you can tell because it went from a jelly roll to a quilt top in less than a week. If you follow my blog, you know how many "works in progress" are in my sewing corner.  So huge thanks to Jacquie and the gals from the Mira Stitch 'n Post for hosting a terrific quilting weekend. I had a blast! And thanks as well to my good quilting buddy who shared the weekend of sewing with know who you are!

It's a great day for quilting!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Betsy's Closet is a Finish

Can you believe it? My Betsy's Closet quilt is finally a finish..

This little quilt, approximately 24" x 28", has been a joy to make.  When I first saw the pattern, designed by Brenda Riddle of Acorn Quilt and Gift Company, I knew I wanted to make it. The little outfits were just so precious...I swear I had one of these dresses in my closet when I was little.

And if the dress wasn't in my closet, then I'm sure some of these were in the closets of my three sisters...

The nine blocks were so enjoyable to embroider...each one unique fun to do, with lots of opportunity to be creative. Brenda supplied us with wonderful instructions, but I must admit, I often took the easier route with the stitches. 

I just love these overalls...

I hand quilted the Betsy's Closet in a checkerboard just seemed to work for me. I outline stiched the outfits and used a Hera marker for the first time to make the lines. It worked perfectly and there were no lines that I had to worry about removing.

I wanted to go bright with the backing so grabbed this turquois blue fabric and even machine stitched the binding in place, remembering to add my little tag.

I'm not sure if this quilt will be used as a blanket or put on a wall, so I attached a sleeve in the same fabric so the quilt will be multi-purpose. 

Of course I had to try it out in the doll cradle. Woodworker Hubby applied the final coat to the cradle just last week.

So that's finish for this week. I am also posting news of my finish at Stitching Betsy's Closet. Jenny, who blogs at Jenny of Elephantz and Kathy who blogs at Shawkl Design Studio Blog, created this Betsy's Closet Quiltalong blog for everyone who wants to show their progress making the quilt. While I was doing my stitcheries, I would often visit the blog and see how others made the same block. Hope you will also check it out and make sure you scroll through the previous posts there to see a gorgeous array of Betsy's Closet creations.

Thanks for coming by today. If you remember, I was pretty busy on the weekend immersed in two workshops hosted by the Mira Stitchin' Post.  It was a fabulous time and I have lots to show you, but that's for another day.

It's a great day for quilting!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

It's All About Friendship

Have you seen the summer edition of Primitive Quilts and Projects? 

I picked mine up last week at The Fabric Cupboard in Moncton and immediately flipped to page 74 to see this...

Does this look familiar to you? It is Friendship Garden, one of the three quilt patterns that I did on the quilt cruise to Alaska last summer with quilt instructors/designers Pam Buda of Heartspun Quilts and Lynne Hagmeier. They each made a version of this pattern which is included in the magazine. (Just in case you need clarification, giggle, the photos in the magazine are those of the quilts made by Pam and Lynne.) Does mine (below) look a little like theirs? Don't look too closely... 

I finished this month's set of baskets for the basket exchange with my blog friend Sandie who blogs at Sandra Kaye Designs. Sandie loves colour...I do too, but mostly blacks, browns, and greys, giggle, so I tried to add a little more colour in this batch.

Don't you love the yellow?  I'll send Sandie five of the blocks and keep five for me. Fifty-five blocks so far and climbing!

I kept on the theme of bright colours and pulled out a Schnibbles quilt project from last summer. The name of the quilt is Summer Day and I thought this would be perfect to infuse some colour in my sewing corner. After all, summer is coming, right? I had cut all the pieces last May, worked on it again a month or so ago, so guess it is time to finish it...

I completed all the blocks and put them together in a pattern...

and then started sewing the seven rows of seven.

I took a row outside and took another pic... 

I'm looking forward to getting the last two rows sewn together, adding the border, and sandwiching it. How I will quilt it is a story for another day. I purchased my new sewing machine many months ago with the intent of using it to do some FMQ and haven't tried it yet. Do you think I'm a procrastinator? 

I want to send a big hug and thanks out to another blog friend, Wendy, who blogs at Why Knot Kwilt. I was the winner of her giveaway recently and was thrilled when the special package arrived in the mail.You can read all about Wendy's "Quilt Redeemed" and the giveaway by clicking HERE.

The wallet is perfect for my cards, bills, and change and is so well made...hats off to you, Wendy! Wonderful Wendy even added to the giveaway package...she included these gorgeous Bella fat quarters by Amanda Murphy Designs. It's definitely time to spruce up some quilt projects in my sewing corner with these treasures.  

And that's not all...Wendy sent me my very own Reader Seater for my iPad.  (You may recognize my version of Darlene's Mystery quilt on the screen. Parts 4 and 5 still to be completed.)

Wendy designed this adorable and very useful Reader Seater, the perfect invention to hold my iPad while reading blogs at night or watching movies in bed. That scissor fabric is awesome! With the Reader Seater, your hands are free, so a person can even quilt in bed...just saying.The pattern is available on Craftsy right HERE. Way to go, Wendy, and thanks so are a doll!

Another peek, another screen...

Wendy is one of the cheerleaders for the blog hops sponsored by Madame Samm at Sew We QuiltThe latest hop is going on right now. It's called "It's For The Birds" and runs from May 8th - May 15th. You should see the bluebirds, and the green one, giggle, that Wendy has created for the hop HERE. To see the whole range of birdie designs created by over one hundred quilters, check out Madame Samm's Pinterest page with lots of feathered inspiration HERE or drop by to visit host Mary at I Piece 2-Mary.

Tomorrow and Saturday I am participating with a quilt friend in  day-long quilting workshops. I'm making a jellyroll quilt on Friday and placemats/table runner on Saturday. My sewing corner may gather dust over the weekend, but I won't!

Update:  What a time I am having!  Jackie and the delightful staff of the Mira Stitch 'n Post from Marion Bridge, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, have hosted a fabulous day of sewing, shopping, and quilting camaraderie at the Maritime Inn in Port Hawkesbury. The meeting rooms have been transformed into a quilting mecca full of fabrics, notions, patterns, kits, and Husqvarna sewing machines.  Jackie is offering fantastic prices on the sewing machines and has a giant table of fabric for $4 a metre. Can't beat that! I'm going back in a few minutes for the Trunk Show from 7-9 and will be going back in the morning at 10 for another workshop.  If you live anywhere close by, drop in! Her travelling shop will be open all day tomorrow. The info and hours can be found at her web site HERE. 

It's a great day for quilting!