Saturday, November 29, 2014

It's All Been Gravy Lately

 Our Thanksgiving meal 
has always been a bit on the 
unconventional side.

Our gravy is
the secret family
Italian Spaghetti Sauce
 covering homemade raviolis 
made by a
 father/daughter team.

Prior to all of this,
it was all gravy
on the quilty side of life too.

I was just in the mood to abandon
all the current projects
and follow along with a
small mystery quilt that Lori,
at Humble Quilts, was organizing.

Why not.
 21" x 23"

I tweaked it a bit, by adding a border,
but it was great fun to sew along.
It was the perfect diversion I needed.

Next in the gravy boat
was this.
All those 3" nine patches I had adquired
in a block swap are sewn together.
 40" x  46"

 I'm adding vines in both borders.
And then, of course, it will need more applique.

No, traditional Thanksgiving meal 
is complete without real gravy
for the roasted turkey and mashed potatoes.
Who can pass on that!

Here's a couple of other finishes
that have been gravy for me.
You've seen these all before,
but now they're done!
I was just waiting for some extra hands
to help hold them up so
I could take a photo.

Quilt #1

 Home for the Holidays
64" x 64"
pattern by Primitive Gatherings

This quilt was all done on the machine, excluding the hand
embroidery for the words.
I even machine buttonholed the wool applique
using a wool thread by Aurifil.
Then I did the machine quilting.

Quilt #2
The top is done on this one.
Ewe and Me
74" 94"
pattern by Janet Stone
and offered by The Quilt Show.

This is the quilt that I used an ancient collection of
Sandy Gervais fabric by Moda
that has to be at least 15 years old.

I must have been saving it for just the right project.
I love how it turned out.

Just a little bit more gravy.
Quilt #3

Here it is.
All done.
 Roseville Album
95" x 95"
pattern by Kim McLean
I can't believe that this one is finally done!
What a feeling.
 Hope you're riding the gravy train too.
Until Next Time-

Friday, November 21, 2014

Fitting It All Together

With the holidays fast approaching
I tend to stress myself out.
 Anyone else like me
trying to get everything planned and organized
so it fits neatly into your calendar?
My only saving thought is, if it 
doesn't fit in, it just wasn't meant to
be included.
Reminder to self:
Enjoy the holidays
Don't have a conniption fit
over things that don't matter.

This morning as I drove off to the gym,
I thought, I sure hope all of this
is helping me to be fit as a fiddle
and feeling fit.
Another reminder to self:
keep going.

The other day Running Man and I ventured
out to do some shopping and we stopped
at Barnes and Noble to pick
out the newest puzzle for
the Christmas holidays.
Everyone works together
getting all the pieces to fit together.

The problem is one person 
continually thinks it's funny to hide a few 
pieces and wait to the end so he can fit in
the last couple of pieces,
completing the puzzle.
It's no secret, Running Man, we
know what you're up to.
Reminder to self:  No looks
fit to kill when it happens
again this year.

Earlier this fall, I joined in the 
nine patch swap that Barb organized.
It had been a long time since I had taken part
in a swap.
I recognized for me swaps weren't a good fit.
It has to do with the
1/4" seam interpretation.

Well, I joined, we sewed and we exchanged.
 I've been working on sewing
these cute little 3" blocks together.
And guess what?
They all fit together perfectly!
There's no hiding flaws
when blocks are sewn side by side
 and being small, there's no fudge factor.

Look at how everything fits like a glove.
 I've been one happy sewer.
Reminder to self:
Swaps can be fun!

I've also been trying to work on 
set #11 of the 
Noah and Matilda Antique Sampler blocks.
I've been concerned
 about getting the parts of this block
to fit together.
I wasn't sure if the inner circle
 would match up with the outer ring of pieces.

 I was fit with worry.

But surprise, surprise.
it actually fit.

And with all of that
it's a fitting ending to this post.

Until Next Time-

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Things to Do When It's -2 Degrees

I love to make lists.
I made a list of the things to do
when the temperature dips to a 
frosty 2 below. (-19C)

1.Stay Home- The joys of being retired,
 but say a little prayer for those
who do have to travel.

2. Keep Your Insides Warm- Enjoy whatever
you like, tea, soup or hot chocolate.

I was going to put some marshmallow
fluff on top but it was as hard as rock in the jar.
Better put it on my grocery list.
There might be more cold weather.

3.  Make More Lists- This is the time of year
for making lists,
Gift lists,
Things to Do Today lists,
Projects to Finish before the End of the Year lists,
New Projects for 2015 lists

4. Enjoy the Moment- Hunker down and
 watch a movie,
get caught up on your favorite blogs, or
 listen to an audio book,
which you had the common sense to pick
up before the arctic blast blasted in.

5.  Work on a Binding- While your watching
your favorite movie 
 snuggle under the quilt you've been meaning to 
get the binding sewn down on and
do some stitching.

6.  Feed the Birds- Don't forget our
feathered friends. 

7. Adapt Your Attire- Pull out those 
warm fuzzy sweatpants that you'd never let
anyone see you in.
 (sorry no photo :0)

8. Get the Mail Tomorrow-  Whatever is in the
box can wait until tomorrow or whenever it
 warms up enough to walk down to the end of the driveway.

9. Bake Muffins-  You've got to have something
to go with the soup that's for dinner.

10. Look Out the Window- Be thankful for the
  blessing of a warm house to keep you safe.

Until Next time-

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Almost Done

This week has flown by.
I've started some holiday shopping,
I've cooked up the Halloween pumpkins for holiday pies,
and I've spent many hours in my sewing room
machine quilting a holiday quilt.

Over the past couple of weeks
I've been debating with myself
about how I should finish my
Home For the Holidays quilt.

Should I do
big stitches with perel cotton?
It would fit the style of the quilt because of
the wool appliques,
But it might take more time
than I wanted to spend.

This is my "put your $ where 
your mouth is" quilt.
 It's my WIP project
that I pledged to finish and
because it's a holiday quilt,
it made sense to me
 to finish it now so I could actually use it
in the next couple weeks.

So that meant no big stitching.
 I needed to
machine quilt it.

My hesitancy was because
it had been awhile since I had 
machine quilted and
my skills were a bit rusty.

It also meant I needed to mark the quilt.
I'm pretty finicky about how I do that.
I use either a mechanical pencil or
chalk,  when I'm marking a design.
I don't use markers that need to be washed out because
I don't wash most of my quilts when I'm done.
This one, with the wool applique, 
wasn't going to be washable.

So I was left with the option of
either machine quilting freestyle or
using stencils and chalk and
pouncing the designs.

The good part about pouncing is
that the marks aren't permanent.
The bad part about pouncing is
that the marks rub off easily.
The designs have to be marked in
small bits at a time,
and it's good to dust your machine often.

I'm just about finished,
and I like how it's turning out.
I used three different snowflake designs,
although all the patterns weren't specifically snowflakes.

There's some free-styling around the appliques,
and it will be a combo in the borders.

With the holidays fast approaching
it will be fun to have this quilt finished.
The good thing is
my confidence with my machine quilting
has been restored.
For me,
there's a time and place for different finishing styles.
No one way is right,
it's just what fits the project and you.

Until Next Time-