Saturday, March 31, 2012

no Friday finishes today!

I dont have much to show this week..a few things half finished!!

The Tagging Game seems to be going around .....and M-R from Quilt Matters has tagged me!!
You should really check out her blog..very cool!!

She has left me a list of questions. will try to answer these..

1. What is your favourite book?
I am a "Lord of the Rings" fan...loved that book. Guess I live in a fantasy word! :)
2. If you could have dinner with one person, living or dead, who would it be?
I would have to pick my Dad. He died many years ago, when I was in my 20's.  I was very close to him...still miss him, and would like to let him know that I turned out OK, and have him meet my 3 wonderful children!
3. When you free motion quilt, do you drop the feed dogs or quilt with them up?
I never drop them.  I set the stitch length to zero...although sometimes I have forgotten to do that, and it still works!! So good 
4. What is your proudest quilting moment?
Probably when I pieced my first quilt...a disappearing 9-patch.. I was so thrilled with the magic , seeing the pattern emerge. I drove my family crazy showing them how I did it!!

5. When did you know you were hooked on quilting?
I walked into a quilt store in Fernie, British Columbia, and felt right at home. I loved all the colors and fabric. I even bought some...which I still haven't used. I had no idea how to quilt, but knew that I wanted to do that! The lady sold me "Thimbleberry" book,  but it took me several months to figure out that was not my style. 
6. What is your favourite place in the world? Why?
I used to go skiing each year at Sunshine (just outside of Banff in Alberta) and my favourite place was the top of Brewster Mountain. You freeze to death on the chair going up, but it is wide open, covered in pure white snow, and you can see the whole world from there. Magical!
7. What is a little known fact about you?
mmmmm.  I was raised on a farm, and went to a one-room country school for my first 8 years of school. .I always wanted to be a ballerina....and wanted my name to be Christine..Hahaha
8. If you were given $1,000 that you could spend on anything for YOU, what would you spend it on -- clothes, shoes, fabric? Something else?
I would spend it on my kids! I am such a sucker! They are grown up (sort of!) all in their 20's now, but I love to buy stuff for them...they probably have a whole closet full of stuff they never use LOL
9. What is your favourite quilt that you made?
I seem to always be in love with the quilt I am working on. But I thinks that my favourite would have to be "Prairie Meadow". I loved this fabric, and love how the quilt turned out.

Although "Kiss the Frog" has to be right up there too !!
and also "Charlotte" my Tuscan Treasure...
I guess maybe I dont have just one favourite !! haha

10. What is your favourite quilt that someone else made?
That would be an old "Dresden Plate Quilt" that my grandmother made. It was always on the "guest" bed when I was young, and I got it when my mom passed away.  Someday, I want to make one like this.

11. If you could be any character in a book, which one would it by and why?
mmm, I don't know! Mostly I read mysteries, and those women and usually tough and scary!! Maybe I could be a fairy God'mother or something!!

That's all folks!! Please consider yourself "tagged" if you haven't been already, and answer these questions on your blog!

And have a great weekend!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Work in Progress Wednesday

Well, I am keeping to my promise to myself not to buy any more fabric, till I get caught up ...a bit. But that doesn't mean that I can't start something new!!! (does it??!!)

I have "Square Dance" basted and waiting to quilt..

and another one  using the last of my "Etchings" fabric..basted and waiting to quilt...

But I just had to cut into my California Girl jelly roll, that my daughter had given me..

I paired it up with yellow background fabric. I wanted to try something different than white this time...

So far it is very cheery and sunny...California Sun??

Now to check in with the Needle and Thread Network..

And Work in Progress at Freshly Pieced...

Monday, March 26, 2012

bad hair day?

I had a good visit out in Calgary with 2 of my kids. Stacey (my baby) is in University...convocating this year..Yeah!! She is the one with the new puppy Zoe..who has grown since Christmas but is still soooo cute!! And yes, that is a quilt that I of my very first...before I really knew what I was doing!

Matt (my oldest) just returned from a backpacking trip around Europe with his girlfriend Anna, so they are just getting settled back to the real world of working again. They took me to the Calgary Zoo..I love that Zoo!!  My favourite thing is the Elephants ..of course!!
BUT they also have a new Penguin display! COOL!  Mind you after waiting in line for 40 minutes in the cold wind, I wasn't sure I still wanted to see them..but it was worth it...this is actually indoors!

They are so fun to watch. There are about 50 of them in there. Several different kinds, although I have to admit I don't know anything about penguins except what I learned in "Happy Feet"! And speaking of Happy Feet...remember that guy with the bad hair (and the plastic around his neck)? Well they are real !! Who knew?

Anyway, it was a fun visit! Back home now....back to some sewing!

Saturday, March 24, 2012


Although I try to maintain a "Award Free Blog"...mainly because I am terrible at doing these kind of things...(and yes, I broke the chain letters too back in school!!) ...I am totally honoured, and flattered that my blog is sometimes mentioned. I am still totally amazed that I even have followers !! I love the blogging community, and have found so much support and encouragement here, so do want to acknowledge and thank fellow bloggers.

Anyway, first I would like to thank Cherie from I bes Cheraldine for nominating my blog for the Versatile Blogging Award. You should check out Cherie's blog...she has so much fun with her all that energy!

And Secondly, thank you to Marjorie from Marjorie's Busy Corner for "tagging " me. Here you have to answer 11 questions about yourself! So you can learn all about Marjorie by checking out her well as checking out some great quilting  (Love her applique!)

So...I will answer her questions...although it is probably more information about me than you really want to know Hahaha!

1. What got you started sewing/quilting?
I started sewing Barbie clothes when I was young, and sewed clothing for many years, but only started quilting a couple of years ago. Although, looking back, I am not sure my first couple of quilt actually count as quilting !! I just fell in love with all the fabric and beautiful colours and textures!
2. How long have you been crafting?
Not sure I am really much of a crafter, but have dabbled in a few things before quilting...tried crocheting once or twice!
3. Where did you travel to this year?
OH, I have been very lucky...I like to keep my suitcase packed and ready LOL....we have done quite a bit of travelling...Charlotte NC, St. John's Newfoundland, Scotland/England (family wedding), Phoenix (we have a place there to escape the winters!) and Maui (another great escape)
4. What is your favorite foreign food?
I probably have to say Italian....I love pasta!  or maybe Thai...mmmm or Chinese...I guess I just love food!!
5. Have you ever been to New Brunswick, Canada?
Yes I have! In fact when I was younger, my girlfriend and I toured New Brunswick, Nova Scotia  and PEI on our bikes...with a tent!!  Great, friendly and helpful people!!
6. What is your favorite on line fabric shop?
Green Fairy Quilts! Hands down! I spend way to much time browsing around pretending I am buying more!!
7. What TV show do you like; if any?
I dont enjoy a lot of the TV that is on these days..but do watch  Harry's Law ....She is so funny, outspoken, straightforward and smart! I would like to be like her...only not so grouchy hahaha!
8. Who has been a big influence in your crafting life?
tough question! I have had a lot of support and encouragement from so many fellow bloggers...everyone is very good about offering suggestions and tips. In my quilting life I would have to say that Faith from Fresh Lemon Quilts was where I had my first "Ah-ha!!" moment. I didn't know what I wanted to quilt until I saw her Lemon Squares quilt and fell in love!! 
9. Do you like working outside/gardening ?
yes, I have a backyard full of perennials, and fill my deck and doorstep with baskets of flowers in the summer! Our summers are quite short here in Canada, so we need to enjoy every minute!!
10. What is your favorite season and why?
SPRING! I love the fresh smells, the spring rains and everything coming to life again! I make daily tours of my yard to see what is peeking through the ground! 
11. What is the one crafty item you really want to make one day?
I think that would be a "Dresden Plate" quilt. I have an old one that I think my grandmother made, and would love to make one like it. I have gotten as far as buying the easy Dresden ruler!

ok..that is everything I have to tell you. Thanks for listening!

Friday, March 23, 2012

A finish...Tuscan coloured Treasure!

Another one finished !! Love that feeling...and love this quilt. And it is always fun to link up to TGIFF!!

This is the material that I bought when we were in Charlotte N.C. last year. I just fell in love with the colours.
The backing is a pretty polka dot..

and the binding is one of the fabrics from the front..Urban Couture by Basic Grey (Moda) ....see I am getting bolder!!

The pattern was quick and easy, and I quilted it with a simple flower pattern to kind of echo the flowers in the fabric.

My new favourite!!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

out of my comfort zone!

As I have frequently said....triangles scare me!  Now I am totally aware that the reason they scare me is because I am not careful enough...I admit it! I am a "close enough" kind of sewist! And for the most part that is OK with me!

But I have offered to help a friend sew some pin-wheels for a special project...yes I did!! Pin-wheels!!
She has been very supportive, and sent along instruction, and I have also checked out a couple of online tutorials and decided to jump right in and give it a try.

I started with 5" squares...

Using 2 squares, right sides together, I drew a diagonal line...

then sewed 1/4 " on each side of the line...

Then cut the line to produce 2 HST pieces...

positioning 4 of these together makes the block! Sound easy enough!!

They actually turned out OK, not perfect, but hopefully good enough. Some of the points match perfectly..

and others...not quite so much!

But overall they weren't as hard as I thought they would be...
So that is what I have been about checking out The Needle and Thread Network...

and Freshly Pieced Work in Progress..

Friday, March 16, 2012

Toe Cleavage....really???

I may not be very fashion savvy....but toe cleavage....really ???
I came across this phrase when I was reading something, so had to check it out. Here is the scoop..(literally!)

"Toe cleavage, where the spaces between the toes are visible while in a shoe, has become an important part of        fashion in the last few years. For many people, toe cleavage can be as sexy and sensual as its more elevated counterpart can, if not more so."

So of course I immediately had to go through my closet and see if I actually had any shoes that had "toe cleavage" !!  
What I did find is that is very difficult to photograph your own feet!!

How about any toe cleavage??

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Work in Progress

Time to check in again with The Needle and Thread Network..

And Work in Progress over at Freshly Pieced..

Here is what I have been up to last week.
We had such a great time when we visited Charlotte NC.  a while back.  I met a friend to explore quilt shops with, and went to a workshop put on by the Charlotte Quilt Guild. They were so friendly and welcoming!! And I came home with some material for a really cute quilt...something to remember my trip!

The fabric is all about the colors I love!   Sort of reminds me of Tuscany! I can just see me with a glass of wine and a good book out on the Tuscan patio!

And I used a quick pattern that they gave to me when I was there. So I have the top done...and on to the quilting..

Friday, March 9, 2012

Friday finishes

I have a finish!  Yeah!!
This is the Magic 4 Patch made from Strawberry fields. I used 2 charm packs for this one, and it finished approx 60"x70".

I finished the FMQ..just did a flowery all over pattern..

The backing is actually an Amy Butler print I found on the 1/2 price wall !! Lucky me!

And check out the binding!!

I finally broke my pattern of boring bindings and added a dash of colour! 
I think one of the reasons I had trouble adding flashy binding is that I like to add borders, and find that a contrasting binding doesn't add much if there are a couple of borders. When I looked around at quilts that I liked with different binding, I realized that most of them didn't have a border, or had a plain white border, so I tried that! I am pretty happy with it!

 Good to have one finished !! Now go over to TGIFF at Quit Matters.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

is spring in sight?

I am sure spring is just around the corner....right??

OK, these are on my kitchen counter, but they reminded me that I planted about 100 new tulip bulbs last fall, and once all this snow melts....I am sure they are under there somewhere!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

New skill - Needle turn applique

I have a always loved the look of appliqué, and have done some fusible and machine appliqué....

I had never hand appliqué,though, and thought that it might be something portable that would be easy to take with me when we travel!  (ok, I do know that I said I wasn't going to start anything new...guess I lied!.....but this is skill building..that doesn't count , right??)

My LQS - Periwinkle Quilts- has a block of the month.  This month had the appliqué block with butterflies.(this is how it is supposed to look !)
                                                  (From Periwinkle Quilting and Beyond)

I thought this might be a good place to start. The pieces weren't so small that I need tweezers to move them around, and besides ....the butterflies are so cute, and I love butterflies !

I went to the demo at the store (thanks Michelle) and she made it look very easy...of course!  So I bought my block and started work.
There are 2 options:  first is fusing the pieces onto the background and then sewing the edges with the sewing machine, the second is called needle turn, where you hand stitch the pieces in place, using the needle to turn under the edge of the fabric as you go.

I decided to try real hand appliqué this time...So I cut out my pieces, remembering to add a bit of a seam allowance for the turn under. So far, so good!

Then I started with the stitching...

Now, I am sure that practice will make this wasn't as easy as Michelle makes it look. I think I might be missing the "needle turn" gene! My technique might be better described as "finger poke, stab with the needle then hold in place with one foot while you get a stitch in there"   Well, maybe that is exaggerating ....slightly!

Maybe I don't have the right needle? Are there special needles? I forgot to ask when I was looked easy! I don't think my needle has been trained in this technique!

I couldn't help thinking that there must be a way to keep the pieces from moving while I was fusing them?  Oh yeah...that would be the fusible option...but I am trying to do this the hand made way...ok, back to work!

Then I was thinking that it would be SO MUCH FASTER doing this on the sewing machine...Oh yeah...that would be the fusible option...but I am trying to do this the hand made way...ok, back to work!

I am having a lot of difficulty resisting the urge to zip around these now on the sewing machine, to make them more secure! That would kind of defeat the purpose, wouldn't it???

As for being portable....I am finding that the best place to work is on my ironing board, so I can adjust the height. Not so portable....maybe I could tuck my ironing board into my golf bag when we travel???

I had great plans for my hand appliqué future projects!
Maybe I should learn to knit?

How about everybody else over at  the Needle and Thread Network..

and Lee's Work in Progress over at Freshly Pieced..

Monday, March 5, 2012

Quick baby gift

I was cleaning out my sewing closet...well trying to anyway! And had some high loft poly batting rolled up in there. It was bulky and really, when am I going to use that?

So I decided to make a floor mat quilt for my sister, who has a new grandson. It would give a little padding to those hardwood floors :)

This was a quick and easy project..I used a panel that I also had stored in there...The front is flannel (very cozy) and the back is a fun cotton print..pieced together to make it big enough.

I just FMQ outlined some of the figures..

And then for the binding, I just did a machine binding... so I sewed the binding onto the back, pressed it to the front and then carefully pinned it so that the machine stitching caught the edge on the front

and the ditch on the back.

 It wasn't perfect...but actually worked out well.

And it is done and off to my sister in the mail.