Friday, December 20, 2013

Do I need Therapy?

Block of the Month being offered by Sentimental Stitches called Benjamin Biggs.

Oh how I have resisted. I've heard rumblings about this BOM that is starting in January, but I've been strong, I've resisted clicking buttons to find the website and drool all over the quilt. But I am simply human, a quilter who loves applique and has no resistance to red/green/cream quilts from days gone by.

My BTCT will need a sister quilt to keep it company, and so I will embark on another 2+ year journey and will probably hand applique these blocks. However, you all have permission to call an intervention and come take away my thimble if you hear that I'm going to hand quilt this one!

So are you going to join in the fun? Do you want a separate blog for this quilt or a continuation of the BTCT blog?

And if I knew how to get pictures from my iphone to my tablet (surface) I would show you photos of the lovely snow that has be hanging out at my guys place today. How could I forget it was supposed to snow last night? And I have NO quilting supplies here.

Stay warm wherever you are!


Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Slash of Sunshine

I've had this quilt for a very long time........seriously, probably close to 2 years. And no, it's not one of my tops in a pile.

The time came to finally get this loaded up and quilted. We had already decided on the quilting, it was my getting my mojo together to do the quilting.

It turned out really well. My original plan was to echo the applique, but once I got all the blocks around the applique quilted, I felt that stitch in the ditch and a frame was enough to make the applique shine.

I always want to quilt so that the piecing is showcased.

Here is a shot of the back.

This is all packed up and ready so ship back. K was fine with me posting pictures before she gets her quilt back.
Now to pull out one of my tops and do something more than an edge to edge. I think I'm going to pull out a log cabin top and feather all the light sections. But first I have a tote bag to make.

Jingle Bells,

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Pillow Talk - Photo Heavy

Zippers should never intimidate you again.  My friend M has given me a few lessons on pillow zippers.  Every time I go to make a pillow, so much time has passed that I need to invite her over to teach me all over again. I had 2 Hallow'een pillows that didn't make the timeline but I vowed to have them done by years end.  After we got the first one done, I knew I had it.  But just in case, I thought I would do a tutorial when I made the second one so I will have it to reference back to.
Here it goes........and of course you can email me if something isn't clear!

Start with a backing that is a few inches larger than your pillow top.
Pillow top has been quilted onto a piece of Warm and Natural

Cut the backing in half where you are going to put your zipper.
Take the top half, and on the cut, fold over 1/4 " then press and hem.

Fold over a generous inch, this is going to be the cover of  your zipper.

Get out the glue to make this part easier.   Put the zipper right side down and line it up to the top of the fold and eyeball the center of your backing.

I use a small amount of glue as it's so much easier than pins.
You are going to work on the bottom of the zipper, and I found it best to open up the zipper a bit to start the stitching.
You can see my stitch line.  After I've sewn part way, I stop with the needle down, lift up the presser foot and then close the zipper.  This makes it easy to finish the sewing line.
You can see I've sewn right to the end of the zipper here

Next you take your bottom half of the pillow back and along the cut edge, turn under about 1/4"  You can see I'm holding the "flap" that I just stitched out of the way so you can see the zipper.


I've lined up the folded edge of the bottom half so it butts right up against the zipper teeth. and have lined up the side edges.

Again, here comes the glue.  It is so helpful with this project.

There is no need to pre stitch this hem, as it gets sewn down when you attach it to the zipper. I do place a couple of pins to keep my edges lined up.

I'm going to start sewing from the far left and I pinned the beginning of the zipper

Here we go with the stitching.  If you are a Pfaff owner, you can appreciate the funky foot.  Geez, it took me forever to figure out how this darn thing worked, I finally has to go online and realized I was putting it on backwards!!!

Again, I start with the zipper open, stitch part way, stop with needle down, lift up the zipper foot and close the zipper.

Stitch right to the end of your fabric

Now you need to back tack the ends of the zipper.

This is done on both ends of the zipper.

Now you have a zipper in the center of your pillow back.  The next part is how I like to finish my pillows

Basic quilting on the top of the pillow, just Warm and Nat.  You can line this, not use batting, whatever your choice is on this part.

Then I put my backing wrong side up, and put my pillow top right side up.  (Wrong sides together)

Then I attach binding to the pillow top side and turn it, hand stitch it to the back,  just like a quilt.


And there you have it, an easy way to put a zipper in a pillow case. Now I'll be ready for Hallow'een 2014!!

I hope you all had a blessed Thanksgiving with family, laughter, and leftovers.

Last night we got one room decked out for Christmas at my sweetie's house, lights are up, radio was playing carols and we sat and enjoyed the night with a log on the fire until 1 a.m. last night. 
Life is GOOD


Tuesday, November 26, 2013

100 Bottles of Beer on the Wall

I can't get this tune out of my head. I've counted and recounted these star blocks so many times. Finally, I've got 81 stars finished!
These blocks will become this quilt top.
I've got one row together and I'm loving how it looks. It was a great color choice for my first solid 2 color quilt.
81 bottles of beer on the wall...... :-)


Monday, November 11, 2013

BTCT Update

I've been poking away at this over the summer and now it's the perfect time to get back at this quilt. Today is my first day of Unemployment Enjoyment. I have my resume updated, have started looking for work, and will stay positive that a good job will become available that matches up with my skill set. In the meantime..........
Let's QUILT!

I've assessed this piece and I have 15 of the 25 blocks completely outlined in the white thread. The other 10 are in some state of finish, some just need a few more things outlined and others have not been touched. Nothing has been done on the border outlines. I'm focused on the outlining, this is where I start when I pick this up and then I like to end with a little of the x hatching.

One stitch at a time, that's how this will become a quilt!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Hello?? Hello?!!?

Hey, over here, remember me?
Wow, it's November and SO much has happened since my last post and I didn't see any of it coming. Life has a way of making you roll and here is the very short version.
That new job I started in June has come to an end, due to my decisions. (all good) I'm head over heals in love with my best friend, someone I've known for 6 years. We got together the end of Sept, hence my lack of quilting and blogging. Finally, my dad had successful colon cancer surgery and is now settled in AZ for the winter.
All that means LIFE IS GOOD!
I've done a few customer quilts and am excited to get back to some of my projects. Quilting has been on hold while I have settled into my new routine.

The one thing I've continued to work on has been my Beyond the Cherry Tree. Wow, that's a lot of hand quilting that I decided to do on this baby, but I'm loving the look of it.

I've started my 6 month workshop at Fabric Etc in Bellingham, WA; two classes completed and so far no one has jumped off the edge, so I must be doing ok with my students. I love sharing the tips and tricks I've gained over the years. It can be so frustrating if you don't know some tips and short cuts, and that's the focus of my workshop.

Fall is here,it's the perfect time to snuggle under a quilt with a cup of tea. I've got an injured cat snuggled up to me and we are happy!


Sunday, September 15, 2013

My Faithful Companion

Annie Pyle
July 1999 - Sept 2013

May the sun always shine on your pink belly,
May you always have a quilt to lay your head upon
and know that your kitty is always beside you.

Anna Bananarama, you really were a super dog

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Hello Fall

I think this has been the most amazing summer we have had in forever. There were a few days of rain and that was it.  Endless days of sunshine and blue skies.  I got in a round of golf, the first time I've done this in years, and I have to admit, I really missed it.  I But I'm ready for some rain.  I want to quilt "guilt-free" and I need some rainy days for that.  The yard keeps beckoning me but I'm done, done, done with it!

My summer quilting has been dismal.  I spent some time this past weekend getting the final borders on this appliqued piece that I got done in May/June.  Only 2 months to get the border on, geesh!

 This is my first 4 block applique and it was great to make these big blocks. The top is 72 x 72

I've kept my hands busy with the hand quilting on this piece.  Once the binding has been finished, this will hit the wash to get out the markings, and I will be shipping it out to someone.

BTCT update: N-O-T-H-I-N-G
It will be tops on my list for Sept to December.

Quite some time back I mentioned that I wanted to get an old cross stitch piece finished.  However, these 50 something year old eyes can't see to stitch on 32 ct linen.  I borrowed a magnifying glass, but it wouldn't stay on my frame so I broke down and bought one with a clamp.  OMG, I can see.  My commitment is going to be one night a week on this and in time it will be finished.  It really is beautiful.

So I say, Good Bye summer, you've been great, but I'm really ready for the fall, the turning leaves, a few rainy days, and some crisp cool afternoons.  Bring it on!


Monday, September 2, 2013

Picture Heavy *NW Washington Fair*

I'm starting off with one of my favorite pieces in the fair. I love the fabric choices, the use of value and the piecing was very good. This was a small piece, about 40" wide. I can imagine how amazing this would be in a queen size quilt.
I don't have much detail on the quilts. I know it seems like everything has a ribbon, but honestly, everything doesn't get one. There are just so many catagories.

This was the Best of Show  I think its an Edyta Sitar pattern, but I'm not positive.  What a great showcase of prints and colors.  It was gorgeous.

This is Donna's quilt.  I love the center motif. Yes, you've seen this quilt on my blog, bu it had a cream border with applique.  They did this as a BOM.  Nice job!

The pink ribbon is viewers choice of the day.  I think this is Jo's quilt, very cool.

Wow, wow, wow!!

Best of Hooked Rugs.  I love seeing this section as I don't hook and I don't know anyone who does.  It's the once a year opportunity to view this craft.
L-O-V-E the hooked rug house.  I would love to have this in my house.

There were very few hand quilted pieces, this one is mine.  It's still one of my favorites.

Embroidery work.  Very intense designs and the whole quilt was gorgeous.

I think this is from Judy Martin's Log Cabin book,  it was a lesson in staying focused.  I can't imagine how long this one took to piece.  Amazing job!

Yes, this is the cover quilt of AP and Q.  Tonya is a local quilter and has been having a lot of success with her quilts this year.  It was quilted by Tracey Fischer, very fun designs and the threads were fabulous.

Same quilt, two different colorways. These quilts were on opposite ends of the barn, and it was fun to tell people to turn around to see the same quilt in a different color. They would look, turn back, look again, and then see the same blocks.

These red bicycles and scotty dogs were SO cute.  Hand appliqued as well.

Love this border.

I have this pattern.................somewhere!

Another hooked rug. 

How cute are these aprons.
If you've stuck with this post, you get to see my second piece. I've shown it before and was thrilled to see all these ribbons. This one ended up going into the Large, Professional machine pieced and quilted category. It won first in this group, Best of Category, Best Professional Machine quilting, and the plaque was Judges Choice for Machine Quilting. I'm humbled, as there are many beautiful quilters in my area.
Having big open spaces of light fabric really do show off the quilting. I've hung this up in my living room so I can enjoy it for a little while before I give it away. It's a gift to a very special person who kept me on the straight and narrow during my journey through breast cancer. She doesn't know she's getting this but I'm thrilled to put these accolades on the label and gift it out.