Tuesday 24 December 2019

Finishing up Christmas

I had a couple things to finish up for Christmas.

Shortbread cookies done! Some have coloured sugar and others have sprinkles
I haven't found a cookie press I like yet, tried one took it back. The next best thing is to roll them out and use a cookie cutter. The recipe is the one in my Virtual Cookie Exchange, you can find it here.

14 straw sleeves. The labels have their names and what they are as there will be someone who has no idea what they are
This one started out simple enough, my oldest grandson wanted a metal straw for Christmas. I thought why not give everyone a straw and of course those straws need covers. I put a draw cord and cord stopper thingie (I know there's a name for it but I can't think of it right now). 

I want to wish everyone a Merry Christmas! I hope your holidays are filled with love, food and laughter.

Sunday 15 December 2019

A Little Christmas Gift Sewing

First up some Barbie doll clothes. One of my granddaughters is not too happy with her dad. She cleaned up her bedroom and put her doll clothes collection in a bag unbeknownst to her dad, who you may have already guessed what happened next. He put the bag in the trash. They were some big tears and angry words. So what's a grandma to do but help replace some of her collection and she could use everything including footwear.

Now let me tell you sewing Barbie clothes is not my idea of fun. They are so small turning those seams hmm..

this is the bodice of a sundress Small darts and tiny seams

This is the collection so far I'm finishing up a few more. I am NOT sewing footwear! A grandma has to draw the line somewhere and after sewing those clothes I'm at the end. That's it ... at least for now. If anyone wants to test their sewing abilities and sanity, just google Barbie clothes. Have fun!

that red and white polka dress has a facing turning those shoulders was more than enough to test the patience of anyone
On to bigger things, Zip and Go bags. The pattern is well written and easy to follow. I have previously made one for myself and one for my daughter. 

these are both Northcott fabrics.
The pattern is for a 7 1/2'' x 9 1/2'' finished bag as the bags were going to an eleven and nine-year-old I decided to adjust the pattern more to a size appropriate to their size. I am sorry but as this is not my pattern I won't be telling you what size I finished them at. 

My guild held our Christmas potluck which is always good. Sorry never even thought about photos. The program for the meeting was about making reusable shopping and produce bags. We also had a $5 gift exchange with the gift to be in keeping with the theme of a reusable gift bag.

what sewing gift is complete without chocolate

I made a petit four basket a free pattern from ByAnnie.com. The little basket sewed up quick. Besides the chocolates, I added a pack of self-threading needles and a candy cane. In all honesty, I was over the $5 limit, but the recipient liked her gift. And that made me happy.

That wraps up my little gifts. I hope you've had time to make a little or big gift this holiday season.

Tuesday 3 December 2019

Virtual Cookie Exchange

Carol of Just Let Me Quilt is hosting the Virtual Cookie Exchange for which we are to share a Christmas cookie recipe, tradition, and/or quilt.

My favourite cookies are shortbreads and not just for Christmas but anytime of the year. I make whipped shortbreads and use a cookie press. 
I know you're looking for a photo of a plate of some tasty looking cookies I would show you however my cookie press is broken. My daughter borrowed it and the tube broke down the seam, I have had it for more than 30 years, so I guess it really doesn't owe me anything. I need to replace it real soon. So I am sorry to say no picture BUT worst of all no shortbread cookies here. YET. 
I'm going to give you the recipe so you can make some for yourself.

Whipped Shortbreads

1 cup softened butter
½ cup icing sugar
½ cup cornstarch
1 ½ cup all-purpose flour

Beat butter until light and fluffy. Gradually add icing sugar, beating after each addition. Sift together flour and cornstarch, gradually add to creamed mixture beating constantly.
Place dough in cookie press and form cookies. Bake at 350 Fahrenheit for 10-12 minutes.

A little Christmas project for all those fab gifts you are going to be making as a result of this blog hop. You are going to need something to put them in. Right? How about a gift bag?

Ruffled Gift Bag

Instructions for a 10 1/2'' x 19 1/2'' bag.

1 pc fabric 11 1/2″ x 20″
1 pc 3'' x 20'' accent fabric

Turn one long edge of the accent piece under 1/4''.
Sew the opposite long edge of the accent piece to one of the long edges of the main fabric. 

long edge of both main and accent fabrics sewn together and pressed towards the accent fabric.
Press the top edge under a 1/4''
Place a mark 4'' down from top edge of the accent fabric on the side and another mark at 4 3/4''.

Sew from the bottom edge of the main fabric up to the 4 3/4'' mark you made. Backstitch at both ends.

Starting with a backstitch at the 4'' mark, sew to the top of the bag with a ¼” seam. Making sure to leave a 3/4'' unsewn gap between the two marks.

leave a 3/4'' gap for the ribbon to thread through on the main fabric. starting from top of the accent piece to the 4'' mark and from 4 3/4'' mark to bottom
Fold the accent piece, at the seam line to the inside of the main fabric having wrong sides together and covering the ribbon gap by the accent piece.  

Sew a line of stitching 7/8'' above the 1/8'' seam. This is the ribbon casing. 

Topstitch 1/8'' from the top and also 1/8'' from the previously 1/4''  turned

Sew the bottom edge with ¼” seam.
Turn and press.
Thread the ribbon through the gap, gather and tie a bow.

An easy bag ready for those gifts! 

A ruffled edge bag already for gift giving.

You can adjust the size of the bag by simply changing the size of fabric pieces you start with.

Make sure to visit all the blogs participating

Sunday 1 December 2019

Sunday This'n'That

The first item up is a little Christmas sewing. The president of the quilt guild I belong too posted a photo of a Poinsettia Table Runner. I watched the you tube video and was off and running. I liked it and wanted to make one,  Sandra of mmm!quilts would call this a Dreami!

Poinsettia table topper

I decided what size I wanted, cut four of the main fabric, accent or backing and batting. There is a pattern I believe I didn't use it though. Stitched them together, turned, pressed and top stitched. Stitched down the four extra petals and added a decorative button from my assortment of buttons.

tin full of decorative buttons 

We started the morning with a couple hours of freezing rain, this is the view out my sewing room window.

my backyard is all tree
My neighbours huge maple tree came down and the majority of it is in my backyard. We are going to loss our tulip tree as branches and bark were stripped off on both sides of the trunk.

Hope your Sunday is going better than mine. 

Monday 4 November 2019

Meet Turnabout

I am pleased to introduce you to Turnabout which is in Issue # 31 of Make Modern a digital magazine, available today November 4th.

Turnabout is made with big blocks for a big impact

The fabrics I used are from the Northcott line of 'Blooming Beauties'.

Blooming Beauties by Teri Farrell-Gittins

A few more photos of Turnabout. I like the combination of pinks and teal.

the colours show more true here

a closeup of some of the quilting

Do you like ezine or digital magazines?

Sunday 3 November 2019

Starting November

October came and went not sure where it went but it's gone. I did a little sewing not much as real life put a hold on my sewing and quilting.

My guild  makes challenge blocks for our comfort quilt program. The challenge for October was Halloween.

I googled Halloween designs as I wanted something cute and not scary. I may have gotten lost in Pinterest for awhile and thought about a making a quilt for Halloween for myself. Next year maybe. I choose a paper pieced pattern by Jennifer Ofenstein of an adorable Sunbonnet Sue witch.

Halloween Trick or Treat Sue

More on the guild front I am doing a demo/class on rulerwork for domestic machines. Fortunately I have a few samples laying around from when I first started using rulers. They are not perfect but a good start.

a couple sample pieces
Do you do ruler work on your domestic machine?

Saturday 28 September 2019

Squirrels Happen

Have you ever started a project without a plan in mind? It starts out innocently enough. In this case I made an eight pointed star. Simple enough, right? You can read more about my favourite quilt block which are stars here.

two of six drawers of FQ's
 I am trying to use some of the FQ's I have. I do have a healthy collection, and they look so nice in all there glorious colours. But they need to be used not just collected.

purple was the choice of the day
Now as tends to happen with a squirrel one gets so involved that the camera is totally forgotten as you make the magic begin to happen. A square here a triangle there and before you know it you are looking at, if the stars have aligned correctly a project you are happy with. Of course there may have been a little oops, nothing mr jack couldn't fix.

a little turning of the blocks and all is fixed
I would like to make it bigger as it is currently only 36'' x 36''. I may be forced to go buy some fabric. I know having to buy fabric, how rough can it get. The current thought is to add a solid purple border to it.

amazing what a few fat quarters can grow up to become

I'm working on writing the pattern for this.

Have you ever made a quilt without a pattern?

I am linking up to Dreami #32 over at mmm! quilts.

Tuesday 24 September 2019

Once Upon a Story Little Teapot

Marian at Seams to be Sew is in her fifth year of running her annual Row Along. This is the first year I designed a row. The theme is Once Upon a story and we were to choose our favourite nursery rhyme, story, or poem. I choose I'm a little teapot. Just in case you weren't sure how it goes and also I don't want to be the only one with it stuck in my head. 

I'm a little teapot
Short and stout
Here is my handle
Here is my spout

When I get all steamed up
Hear me shout
"Tip me over
and pour me out!"

I'm a clever teapot,
Yes it's true
Here let me show you
What I can do
I can change my handle
And my spout

Just tip me over and pour me out!

You are most welcome :)

A big thank you to Northcott for supporting us with lovely fabric. 

Northcott's Basic Blenders

fused on an applique pressing sheet
I like applique. This time I used Steam-a-Seam 2 lite, you can of course use your favourite method. After tracing the images onto the paper on the fusible and applying them to the wrong side of the fabric cut the shapes out. A placement sheet is provided in the PDF pattern file, using an applique pressing sheet fuse pieces in place. Let cool and peel off your appliques are now ready to be positioned on your background piece. 
I used a pen to add the white shine in the black of the eyes instead of trying to cutout tiny white pieces.

positioned on background and pressed into to place, remember once you press them with a hot dry iron they are permanently fixed in position 
I stitched the applique with the buttonhole stitch using Superior MonoPoly thread, you could use matching thread. 

sugar cubes stitched with the Monopoly
Normally I quilt up my design so you can see it finished, but I am planning on making more of the other designers patterns to make a larger quilt because I loved the theme so much!  Make sure you follow along to collect the patterns and make your own "Once Upon a Story" quilt!  My pattern will be available through the end of October.

having a tea party in the garden

My row can be downloaded here.

Be sure to enter today's giveaway. Inspired Led

Worldwide Shipping / Shipping Cost paid by winner. Value $30.00.  
Please visit Seams to be Sew for all details.

The Schedule For The Row Along Is As Follows:

Tuesday, 9/24/2019
Pumpkin Patch BC | Stitchin at Home 
Tuesday, October 08, 2019
Show and Tell Day

Sunday 15 September 2019

Guild BOM 2019

It's one of my favourite seasons 'guild season'. My guild had there first meeting of the year on Monday Sept 9th. I look forward to catching up with fellow members and seeing what they've made over the summer.
It is also the time I introduce the new BOM for the year, this is the fifth year I have designed the BOM. My guild is more traditional than modern and as such more members join in making the BOM if it is a more traditional setting.

2019-20 BOM
This years quilt I made in my favourite colour...green. I picked up the greens from Caroline Quilts when she was a vendor at our quilt show in June. They are mostly Northcotts you can read about them here.

A few closeups of some of the blocks and the quilting.

 some feathers in this block
straight lines and curves

swirls and  a loop with echoing out

I tried not to overthink my quilting and just had fun
The following are the previous BOM's I have designed for my guild.

2015 the first design was a medallion style quilt my oldest son has this one
 2015 my first BOM design for my guild, read more about it here.

2016 in preparation of Canada's 150th birthday, applique
2016 was a wall hanging with applique, you can read more about it here.

2017 on point with Irish chain alternate blocks
 2017 saw a more traditional style set on point, you can read more here.

2018 saw more of a modern setting
2018 I designed more of a modern setting, you can read more about it here.

Do you like making BOM's?

Tuesday 10 September 2019

My Favourite Quilt Block Hop

Thanks to Carla from Creatin' in the Sticks for running this fun hop.

 It was an easy decision as to what block I would be showing you today, Star blocks hands down. I like all stars the LeMoyne Star or Eight Pointed Star, the  Ohio Star, Sawtooth Star, Friendship Star to name just a few.
Star blocks are one of the most common patterns used in quilts. They are by far my favourite block.

Shall we look at a few.

Ohio Star

The Ohio Star is a nine-patch block made of quarter-square triangles around a central square, the Ohio Star block is a lovely quilt block. 

North Star or Sawtooth Star block

North Star one of the oldest block patterns. It’s been published by many pattern companies under many names, including Aunt Eliza’s Star or Variable Star, over the past 120 years or so. Today’s quilters often call it Sawtooth Star.

LeMoyne or the Eight pointed Star
The LeMoyne Star or Eight Pointed Star dates back from 1834 - 1859. The block can be made a couple different ways the traditional pieced using diamonds and y-seams. Or using HST's a much simpler version.

Some quick instructions for an Eight Pointed Star.

Cutting Instructions for 12''  Eight Pointed Star.

Background Fabric
Cut 4 – 3 1/2'' squares for the corner pieces
Cut 4 – 4 3/8'' squares for the half square triangles

Star Fabric #1
Cut 4 – 4 3/8'' squares for the half square triangles

Star Fabric #2
Cut 4 – 4 3/8'' squares for the half square triangles

Make 4 HST's using two background squares and two of star fabric #1.

Draw a line diagonally on the back of a the background fabric. Place on top of star fabric #1 with right sides together. Sew a 1/4'' on both sides of the drawn line. Cut diagonally on the drawn line. Press. Trim to 3 1/2'' by 3 1/2''. Make 4. 

Repeat using two fabric #2's and the background fabric.

Repeat using one each of the star fabrics. Make 4.

Arrange as per the photo of the Eight Pointed Star above. 

I call this one Star Points I'm sure it probably has other names as well. I designed this for my guilds BOM this year.

Star Points

How about we take a look at some of my patterns with stars?

Hearted Beauties

A large double star with heart shaped New York beauty blocks. You can read more about it here, the pattern is available in my Etsy shop.

Outside Stars
Stars Outside is a paper pieced pattern with stars. You can read about it here,  the pattern is available in my Etsy shop.

Another type of star quilt I've made is a Mariners Compass Star, you can read about it here.

I hope you have enjoyed a glimpse of my favourite quilt block and you have found a new appreciation for stars in quilts or blocks.

My Favourite Quilt Block Blog Hop Schedule. 

Monday, September 9th

Tuesday, September 10th

Wednesday, September 11th

Thursday, September 12th

Friday, September 13th