Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Pea Pods for Brenda.

Monday I made three blocks called Pea Pods for a friend who is moving to Vancouver Island to be closer to her son and grandchildren.  Our directions were to use bright batiks for the colours.  I used to be in a small quilting group with Brenda and decided to make more than one block for her.  One which had flip flops silk screened on it as I'm sure she will be spending time at on the beaches close to her.
 We had a group of ladies who used to fold and stuff our paper newsletter into envelops in the days when we mailed out our newsletter and they became known as the Stuffers.  Now we get it via e-mail but Stuffers still meet at Carmi's on the last Tuesday of the month as a social group and often do service things for the guild.  This is where Brenda was surprised with her blocks.  They were pinned onto a backing that Beckie donated to her as we didn't want her not to have something to work on when she moves away from us.
 Ironically Brenda's outfit coordinated with the blocks!  She was quite surprised and overwhelmed by our gesture.
 They also presented her with a few more blocks and some card wishing her well.
 Part of our service this time was sewing labels onto the Canada 150 Quilts that the Canadian Quilters' Association is encouraging quilters to make this year.  Their goal is 1,000 quilts to be donated to Ronald MacDonald Houses across Canada.
 Our Show and Tell this day was small.  Beckie had reduced the pea pod block to a 1" finished size for the peas and came up with this small beauty.  The pea squares in Brenda's are 2".  Beckie had another quilt that was made with friendship blocks that she then slashed and resewed.  She was sitting beside me and I couldn't get a picture of it but she plans on entering it in our show.  Another girl revealed a challenge for another group and didn't want a picture take of hers.
 On Friday last week I went to the CreativeFibre show at the Tradex and the Fraser Valley Modern Quilt Guild had a display of some of their members quilts in the centre of the hall.  This Chain quilt caught my eye.
 At one of the sewing machine vendors they had this Rainbow Maple Leaf quilt reminiscent of the Canada 150 block that I've seen as a paper pieced block.  Here is a link to Dana Szucs Hayden Sew and Sew who designed it.
Rita like this grey and white neutral quilt.
This is how our trees are looking right now, a few leaf sprouts can be seen machine quilted onto the branches.
I love the lime green and greys on this piece.
Over sized log cabin blocks.
Stretched out flying geese looking like evergreens.
A lovely Moda Sampler Skills Builder quilt.
My purchases were very small, some colourful fold over elastic for an up coming project.
Some green Diamond Woven Textiles for another..not my usual colour range.

Monday, 20 March 2017

First Day of Spring! Happy Birthday Dad.

Happy First Day of Spring and my Dad's birthday.  Glad we didn't have any snow as we did several years ago.  In fact our Cherry Blossoms are quite behind with all the snow we had this year. We do have crocuses and snowdrops popping up along with the occasional Daffodil.

 I made this collage of my House Party Revival for Instagram the other day.  Have started some of the detail stitching for the blocks.
 First was the drizzle stitch and outline around the trees. This picture washed out the green and I used two different threads on the trees.  The red one has a darker variegated thread than the yellow ones.
 Next was an open Trellis stitch around the window and then I did a Palestrina knot instead of back stitch for the four quadrants of the window.

I also did the Palestrina knot around the edge of the roof.  I think I'll stitch around the chimney and will think if I'll add anything else to the block later.
 I also made a one hour basket to hold my stash of 2016 Row By Row fabrics out of the border print.
 Rather than using a fusible I outline machine quilted some of the details.  I used a King Tut Blue around the shape of the houses.
 Another King Tut Green for the grass and a Red for that narrow strip of red along the top.
Kelby Sews has a great tutorial and the basket pattern is a free one on Craftsy. Here is a link to the tutorial.

Tuesday, 14 March 2017

House Party Revival staying focused.

I've started some of the embellishment stitching on window 1. Doing some outlining and Drizzle stitches on the trees to begin with.
 Have some stitching done on the roof lines of window 2 but need to add the chimneys that I've mislaid. Have some bullion stitches outlining the roofs.
 Window 3 is ready for stitching also. Love how the bias tree turned out.
 Just finished adding the wool pieces to Window 4 last night.  Let the fun embellishing begin.
Here is a picture of the finished piece designed by Tonye Belinda Phillips. Here is a link to her website.  I got my kit from the Stitchin' Post in Sisters Oregon. She is currently teaching it as a 3 month BOM.

Friday, 10 March 2017

Signs of Spring, Staying Focused on Quilting.

Came home this afternoon to this view of the courtyard.  It's hard to see but the weeping cherry tree buds are starting to swell, often by this time it is in bloom but due to a very cold and snowy February they haven't burst forth yet.

 Did you notice the ducks resting by the edge of the pond. here is a closer peek.  We've had nesting ducks at our pool since at least 2000.  Maybe we will see some this year.  Several years ago they cleared a lot of the undergrowth from the edge of the pool and they stopped.

I started doing some of the embellishment stitching on Wednesday at my wool group on block 1 of House Party Revival.
House 2 has the stitching along the roof edge but still needs the chimney and other touches.
Last night I started this block and today at my Friday group I got almost all the bias stitched down.  Then I'll add the rest of the wool applique and start on House 4.
How is your focus doing for the month?

Monday, 6 March 2017

Busy as a Bee, Coming in like a Lion.

I got some of my circles prepped for Down the Rabbit Hole and learned how to do a continuous bias for the first time.  On Friday I had all the circles pinned and prepped and had almost half the bias stitched down when I went over to my stitching group.
 
 Here are are few of my favourite flowers.  I bought a small piece of this bee fabric about a year ago and finally found a purpose for it.
 I also made a smaller circle for a centre and this looked like the perfect large circle to add her to.  My flowers are pink, yellow and orange with three neutral greys with pops of colour.
 Love this happy accident of SEW.
 Some of the fabrics I did reverse for large and small circles.
 Had some dotty fun with others.
 Here you can see my different choices for stems, two batiks and a small cotton dot print.
 This turquoise and yellow print is a favourite of mine.
 Here was the centre before I started.
 My first layout I realized I had grouped a lot of lights too close together.
So I shifted them around and pinned them in place or thread tacked them.
 Unfortunately I managed to dislodge and misplace a few.  But found them all and ended up with this as my finished centre.  I also sewed down the centre circle which on next month's to do list.
 Here is a reminder of what the quilt will become.  The centre medallion is 24" square.  Next up will be adding leaves, the centre (done) and the first narrow border.  Can't wait to start building those houses!  If you are on Instagram you can search #sarahfielkebom2017 to see what others are up to.  You can still join this group by going to Sarah Fielke website here.
Oh one more thing. this is what I woke up to yesterday morning.  By noon it was gone.
 But when I went to pick up my mom for dinner it started again. They had to close off several of our steeper hills due to treacherous conditions.  Around 9 last night it was coming down quite heavily and the news was warning people be careful on the steep hills in New Westminster.  Glad I was home stitching on my March focus on quilting pieces. Unfortunately the short video I is too large to send to my desktop.  I managed to post it at #shhdesigns1 on Instagram.
Looks like the slow melt is happening and the Spring bulbs will once again be uncovered.

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Review of February Focus and Goals

Saturday I spent the day at a friend's sewing half square triangles together into blocks and then into pairs.  At home I sat down and ironed the pairs to prep the 26 star centres and corner blocks and went OPPS!  I had forgotten I made the half square triangles oversized so I could trim them down.  By the time I realized this error I realized I needed daylight to trim them and put them away for the evening.
 I did get them all trimmed and paired up to be resewed on Monday.
 Yesterday I got the information for the next month of sewing for March.  We will add flower circles with centres for the 26 stems and add a bias edge to the circle.
 I got my first cotton and wool pieces down for my House Party Revival window 1 I'm about halfway down window two.  My plan is to do all the wool and cotton applique and then have fun with the embellishing stitches.
 Yesterday we had an unexpected snowfall.  This was my place about ten o'clock.
 It did come down heavier for awhile before stopping.
 And by one o'clock it was all gone.  Farther east they got quite a lot.  My cousin is in Palm Desert and says the desert is greener than she has ever seen it before.  She also mentioned that Chicago has set a record for snow free days this winter!  We have an aunt who lives there.
 Other February unexpected goals were designing and finishing my challenge quilt in four days.  No prizes but I was told it was Lorna's husband's favourite.  Prize enough for me.  There was a tie for second and third prize and my friend Mary was one of the tied people.
 Got the borders on my Valentine's quilt.
 Friday I went for a walk and found these crocuses and snowdrops outside the condo door.
 Witch hazel is in full display but the yellow one has almost none on display.
 This Hellebore reminded me of a dogwood bloom.
 And a pink version.
 Love the dark contrast on this yellow crocus.
 These were more of a daffodil yellow.
 The early rhododendron is out in bloom already.
 One of the crows needed a closer read of the information signs along the boardwalk.
 Love these purple crocuses that look so delicate.
 This year is Canada's 150th anniversary of Confederation on July 1st and all National Parks are free for entry.  I decided to get one of the passes.
 Time to write down my finishes and maybe get a couple of February goals that I missed started on.  I didn't get my Mika or Sunflower Gathering backgrounds stitched so maybe that will be my final February Focus goals for today.  Then to list the March ones.