Thursday, 26 January 2017

Hoochy Hearts, Going Down The Rabbit Hole.

Saturday morning I decided to put together an over sized mug rug made of hearts and some of the left over piecing when I put my heart swap blocks together in November and this is what I came up with.
 I used a variegated red thru pink thread to stitch random hearts in the background and also the pieced hearts that I made.
 I had fun tucking them into the odd background shapes left when I stitched the hearts.
 I just may do something similar in my larger piece.
 It was done by Sunday evening.
 Waiting till Valentine's day to use it.
I used the same fabric for the back and binding.

 I signed up for the 2017 Down the Rabbit Hole BOM by Sarah Fielke based on her pencil sketch here.

Now I'm try to choose background for the piece and I think I'll be using these ones the turquoise above the navy and the green are the same design but obviously different colours.
 The first of the blocks comes at the end of the month but Sarah sent us a bonus project of a Huswif to make while we wait the final days. I cut my out on Monday and by Tuesday it was finished.  So I'm staying focused so far.
 It opens up and can sit on the arm of your chair.  I added some more rabbit prints on the inside along with flowers.  The linen thread with turquoise polka dots is stitch to hold your scissors from falling out.  The turquoise with white ribbon holds my snips around my neck.
 There is a large pocked behind the pink rabbits and dots and I made a narrow pocket to put a pencil or marking pen in at the right side of the brown bunny turquoise fabric.
 The white and brown bunny fabric has four pockets for needles and something else and the small floral fabric has two pockets.
 All I need to do is put a snap on the wrap to keep it shut.  I stuffed my carrot with crushed walnuts in an inner muslin carrot that I also put a wrap of cotton batting around.  I cut it about half an inch smaller than the outside fabric so I could easily insert the bag containing the crushed walnuts.  The carrot top is made with wool strips I cut irregularly.  You can still sign up for the BOM if you want here is the link to the page on Sarah's website. You can pay for the whole year instead of paying by the month.  She also has some templates and other goodies available for purchase if you desire.
 Wednesday I went to my friend Rita's and the Witch Hazel is now bursting forth.  The yellow one is still more than a week behind.
 They remind me of orange spiders emerging.
 One daffodil in bloom and another about to come forth.
 A couple of snowdrops showing their blooms.
 This one is more still a bud.
 Another look at the Witch Hazel from a different angle.
 This bush has so much character.
 Enjoy the rest of the week and Stay Focused!

Friday, 20 January 2017

Prepping and Staying Focused.

I've not touched my Sarah Fiekle Happy Days Quilt for some time and signed up for her new Down The Rabbit Hole on which starts at the end of this month.  So I prepped some of the pieces for one of the last applique blocks to take to my sit and stitch with friends today.  The flower petals are English Paper Pieced Hexagons with a curved outer petal.  The leaves are a half hexagon piece.
 I also neglected my 366 Circle project in July and have decided to work backwards from December and prepped some snowflake, star and Christmas themed circles that I used on my Santa and Tree project.
 I also prepped a couple from the Row by Row home fabric and a couple of October Halloween, autumn themed ones to also applique.
 I prepped the flowers and leaves for my next Mika block which is 16" square.
 Here are some of the fabrics for the background cut so I can start at the beginning of February.
 Last Friday I went for a walk to see the ice in the Fraser River.  We were expecting rain to arrive on the weekend.  One of the pieces got caught up on a dead head in the river.  When the tide is in you don't see the roots and it will float off.
 We've two Witch Hazel trees one orange and on yellow.  The yellow is about to burst forth with it's spidery leaves.  I saw someone on Instagram share a photo of one on the North Shore already out.  It's been cold along the river and ours are late.  The yellow variety is always later than the orange one.
 Another view of the ice on the tree root and more ice across the river.
 A look towards the mountains, it was very damp and chilly along the river.
 The last remnants of the snow are now long gone as we've had about three or four days of rain.  Some major flooded intersections and large puddles. Today is sunny right now so time to go and get ready to stitch.
Hope your weather is pleasant where your are, I know a lot of snow and ice along with big melts are happening all over.  We are back above our typical temperatures and yesterday only had a one degree Celsius fluctuation in our day.

Friday, 13 January 2017

Staying Focused!

I'm happy to say that so far I'm on track with my goal of Stay Focused!  At the beginning of the month I cut out the fabrics for Block Three of Sunflower Gathering; along with the alternate block and started sewing the background for the wool applique.
  I'm waiting until I have a few more of the four patch colour combinations sewn before I start sewing the alternate blocks together so I have a good mix of different four patches to chose from.

Here is the wool block background.

Here are most of the wool pieces cut for sewing, the red will be 52 little flowerettes so I'm waiting until I'm ready to attach them before cutting out.  The larger green left over will become some of the stems for the Sunflowers.
 I prefer not to fuse my blocks but had decided to try it with this projects.  As it has been sitting for a couple of years it did not fuse well so I have decided to pin and then fuse after sewing.  I don't like how stiff the fusing makes the pieces and I also did the window technique so just the edges are fused and not the body of the piece.
 Yes those threads at the top and side are extending off the block as they will have the red flowerettes on the next blocks.
 I also prepped the freebie block.  The colours are truer in this first photo without the flash.
 Stitched down and French Knots around the centre.
 Here is block one, the leaves will extend to the next block.

 Here is block two it also will have some pink flowers and vine onto the adjacent blocks.

 I also prepped the fans and pinwheel block three for Mika.
 Here are the finished pinwheels which will be sewn into a row.
 And the fans will be trimmed down and sewn into another row.
 I started prepping the next Mika block which will be a 16" one and will prep the next Sunflower Gathering block today.  But I've decided to work on something else until February that is on my UFO list.  Will have to see what I chose, I'm not yet sure myself! \

 I took this picture on Wednesday with my iPad of the snow on the mountains and the Native Paddle wheeler that still goes up and down the river.  There is more ice floating down the river but things are expected to warm up by the weekend.

Are you Staying Focused?

Tuesday, 3 January 2017

2017 Plan For The Year...

This was the beginning of the sunset on January 1, 2017, the bright reflection caught my eye.
 This is about twenty or so minutes later, love the blues, pinks and mauves in the sky.
 Yesterday I got a surprise in the mail from my friend Anna from Woolie Mammoth Blog.  I won one her 12 Days of Christmas give aways!
 She also sent along this lovely card.
 Santa made this delivery in person.  He is just so sweet, love the looped fringe on his hat and the french knots on his pompom.  He looks like he is disappearing down the chimney!
 Anna is hosting a couple of sew alongs for UFO's and she chose this Sunflower Gathering kit from Primitive Gatherings.  Well I've also got that kit and have failed in completing it so plan to join her.
 Confession time.  I did do two of the blocks and then I stalled.  But as you can see there are many pieced blocks also to add to the quilt so I'm starting with them and also finishing prepping the third one. This was the first block I made and you can see that they extend into the neighbouring blocks.
 This is block 2 on a white background.
 Another big stall for me was my Mika quilt, I'm picking it up also.
 Here is what is considered to be block one, a combination of a pieced and appliqued block.
 Block two.  So I'm going to start prepping the double block three.
 I stopped in July on my 366 challenge as I couldn't find the safely stashed piece of fabric I wanted to use for July 1st.  I've found it but decided I'm going to work backwards from December and finish it up.  A great take along project for my Friday stitching group and guild meetings.
 I am going to continue with these free cut trees I started just after Christmas.  I had hoped that a couple of friends would join me and we could swap them but I don't think this will be happening.
 I've made three sizes and will add strips of fabrics and probably offset the trees rather than have all the same size.
 This is a new project, actually two that I cut out yesterday.  To be revealed later.
 On my last post in December I wrote out my phrase for 2016 here.  This year I've decided Stay Focused will be my phrase this year.  I'm saying STAY rather than BE as I often can be very focused on something and then a flash will come and I'm off checking out the shiny thing that caught my eye. This year I hope to STAY FOCUSED.  I'll be checking in with Anna's blog though out the year as part of the challenge.  I may add some new projects because I know some are in the works.  I may add some other UFO's but not until I get a good forward direction on some I've mentioned.

Off to do some prepping so I can get started.  What is your focus for 2017?