Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Hitting the Target

This past week it 

 keeping my nose to the grindstone,

keeping my sewing blinders on,

knuckling down,

getting serious,

staying focused
and hitting the target!

Next panel:
50 circles to go.

I think I can...
I think I can...
I think I can!

Until Next Time-

Thursday, July 24, 2014

5 Things You Might Not Know About Appliqueing

There are those who like to do it
and there are those who definitely don't.

There are those who do it the old way,
and there are those who do it a newer way.

I admit,
I like to do it the old fashion way.

Want to guess?
Why, I'm talking about hand appliqueing.

Here are 5 things you might never
 have known about the wonderful world of
needle turn applique.

1. Appliquers have the best thread collections.
Every piece that's stitched down has 
to have the exact color of matching thread.
So you can only imagine the number of spools 
of thread that includes.

2.  Hand appliquers don't carry
much excess baggage.
There's really very little equipment that's needed,
a needle, a thimble, scissors, and maybe 
a few pins here and there,
minus that big thread collection, of course.

3.  Appilquers don't like to show off,
and do mostly undercover work.
The key to a good applique is not 
having any of that thread show on the top.
Hand appliquers learn to make visible stitches.
It's suppose to appear like
the pieces are just part of the fabric.

But, if you were to look at the underside of the piece,
 There's all those beautiful tiny stitches in
a rainbow of colors.

4.  There can be considerable weight gain when appliqueing.

Just one panel of my Roseville Album quilt
weighed 2.5 ounces before I started
and now that it's complete it's 
 doubled in weight to 5 ounces!

Now multiply that out over the entire
surface of a quilt and you've got a sizable increase of weight.
That could require a few extra trips to the gym.

And, finally,
5.  Hand appliquers can come up short.

No, it doesn't mean that I'm not very tall,
it means
invariably, I'm short an inch of thread
to finish the inch left to stitch.
The question is why does it seem
happen so often.

Those of us who enjoy that "A" word
might get a little wacky from time to time
as we repeatedly 
make those invisible tiny stitches over and over again
that nobody sees.

So hug an appliquer and tell them "good job",
 but no comments about that little extra weight.
We're very sensitive.

Until Next Time-

Friday, July 18, 2014

Home for the Holidays

 This week I was invited to join
a new quilt group.
I thought it would be fun to meet
some new quilters,
enjoy some new friendships,
 be exposed to some new ideas,
and be inspired by other's enthusiasm.

The group was very inviting and friendly.
Although, it's hard to be the newbie.

I was enthused right off the bat by
their next motivational idea.
Each person is to choose one, two or more
WIP's and make a commitment to to finish
them in one year.
Okay, you say, we've all done that before.
The catch is that there's a small financial
obligation, as well.
It's like, putting your money where your mouth is.

Each project = $5.00
If you complete your project, you can have
your money back,
if not, your money will be given to the local food bank.
Actually, I think everyone who did this last year
 left their money in the pot and the
group made a very nice donation.

It sounded like fun.
So I looked through my "WIP collection",
and decided to start with this pattern:

 I had even bought a kit
 back in November, 2012.
( the receipt was still in the bag.)
Really, who starts a Christmas quilt in November?
Obviously, not me.

So, in keeping with the phrase,
"Christmas in July",
I'm officially adding my money to the pot
and beginning to work on this project
Who knows,
I might get it done for this Christmas.

  Until Next Time-

Monday, July 14, 2014

Busy as a Bee

If we were to walk down
my driveway today,
we might stop and wonder
what was that low droning noise.

And if you stopped near this tree
 which is called a Golden Rain Tree,
and paused to look at the beautiful showy yellow flowers
 on the long stalks,
we would know where that constant buzzing sound
was originating from.

Hundreds of honey bees
 busy at work
doing what they love.

 That's how it's been for me this past week.
I've just been as busy as bee
doing what I love.
 Hope you have too!
  Until Next Time-

Friday, July 11, 2014

Quilting With One of The Big Girls

Yesterday I had the chance to
do some machine quilting with 
one of the Big Girls and
trying something new.

We're fortunate
to have a Gammill dealership in town
called, Jukebox Quilts and
Kelly rents time and instruction on her incredible machines.
I've always wanted to try 
using one of the big computerized machines
with the Statler Stitcher.

I had a simple top done
that I wanted quilted with just an
edge to edge design and
plan to donate it to some worthy cause.
It was the perfect top to
experiment on.

And I have to say,
it was an awesome experience.
The set up took the most time, but
once that was done,
 I just pushed the little black button and 
off she went.

A couple of times
 across the surface of the quilt
 and then
slam, bang, thank you mam,
 it was done!

I could see where this could become a very fun and 
 creative thing to do.
And I'd like to try it again sometime,
but yesterday I walked away with a 
top freshly quilted and 
money still in my wallet.

Until Next Time-

Monday, July 7, 2014

I Want To, But...And a Winner

Since I got home on Wednesday,
it has been blistery hot.
I've been able to spend a little 
time in my sewing room,
which fortunately, is in the 
coolest part of the house.

But although I long to be sewing 
something on my machine,
I've tried to stay focused on
all of the hand applique I'm currently
working on.

I keep reminding myself
how close these panels are 
to being finished.

So instead I appeased myself
and sewed two bindings.
Oh, look.
I just created more hand work!
Thank you everyone who took the 
time last week to share what projects
you're working on during the summer.
I always have bigger plans than
time will allow, but that's okay too.

Now for the winner of my 
"Softly Spoken" fat quarters
designed by Harriet Hargrave
for Marcus Fabrics.

Running Man
randomly selected
Nancy of
The Tattered Garden Quilting.
Thanks again everyone.

Until Next Time-

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Softly Spoken and a Giveaway

Yesterday I decided
I needed a little field trip
 and went to check out what was new

I don't get to Harriet Hargraves's 
quilt shop located in Wheat Ridge, CO
which is a suburb of Denver, very often,
but when I do, it's always a delight.

Of course, when you first walk in the door
the first thing you see is 
Harriet's latest line of fabric from Marcus Fabrics
called "Softly Spoken".
It's beautiful.
Some did come home with me.

The colors are terracottas, blush,
aqua tones and neutrals.
The line was inspired from a medallion antique
quilt from Virginia, circa 1820-1840's.

The colors are sweet
and yet elegant looking.
And have been accurately
reproduced from the originals.

In celebration of "summer fun",
 I'd like to share a 
fat quarter bundle of this new delicious fabric line
with one of my blog readers.
5 fat quarters

Just leave me a note
letting me know what project or projects
you're trying to concentrate on this summer.
I'll draw somebody's name 
next Monday, July 7th.
(If your comment doesn't include your email
please be sure and include it.)

Until Next Time-