Tuesday, March 29, 2011

A Scrappy Quilt from the Garden Party Leftovers

With the leftover flower petals I was able to create another quilt, a scrappy quilt measuring 72" x 72".

The background was done all in one colour

I used a scrappy border from a Kim Diehl pattern from more of the scraps. I was really pleased with the outcome from the leftovers.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

R - S - T-U-V Snowmen Blocks Done!

R is for Reindeer

S is for the 'sideways' Snowflakes...I'm still learning the rotate mode...no one's  home to teach today.
T - Twinkle , U - Upon the housetop, V - Village

Three more blocks to go, yahoo! My husband Bill, has already helped me pick out the border print. Once those blocks are done, it should go together fast, or I should say...hoping it goes together fast.
I'm still working, no thinking about  working, on a Cynthia England workshop piece. That was one my girlfriend Liz talked me into doing. It was an all day workshop at the Quilts & Calico Cottage in Exeter & was a Snow Scene finishing at 19 1/2" x  17 1/2", this was going to be easy I thought to myself...'I'll have this nearly done by lunch" maybe in a perfect world! wow it was & still is a lot of work, it's on my UFO list for this year.
Since that workshop experience, I don't take my time for granted anymore, no matter the size! It gets done ...all in good time!

Swan Migration in Aylmer ON

A week 1/2 ago,  I was out on a road-trip with Ann & Susan, Susan had an idea to add to our agenda, that was to see the swans...she even brought her telescope for better viewing, wow! This photo is shot from my digital camera. It is a trip well worth the viewing, during the migration you have the opportunity to see more swans than your eyes could ever take in. Loads of information is posted within the inside lookout, it was a first for me...I'm still in awe. Did you know the swans life span is 20 years? & over 1/2 of their life is spent in   migration.
The bird conservation area is located next to the Aylmer Police College, well worth the road trip. Thank you for sharing Susan! Then we were off to Winter Wheat,  & the New Sarum Diner for grilled cheese sandwiches & drinks...the non-nonalcoholic kind. 

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Clock's have sprung ahead...Spring arrives this Weekend!

With the springing ahead of the clocks, the days seem longer. This Saturday is a full moon, followed by the Spring Equinox! Yes I made it through another winter...Soon the earth will come alive with all the spring blooms & the beautiful spring colours.
A postcard made to welcome spring...A car of Spring Chicks!

Leaf Bowls for CQA 2011

I've completed three leaf bowls for the CQA,  the talented Jill Buckley designed the patten & guilds from across Canada have made them for the CQA Dinner at the Great Hall on the UWO campus.
It was a fun pattern with a lot of satin stitch & I was quite surprised at how quickly they came together.
These are so versatile, decorative, & reversible!  

Monday, March 14, 2011

Green Pillows!

As you can see I'm still working with green...

I had a piece of green toile fabric, so I  made quilted fabric from it using my batting scraps & scrap fabric for the backing  (polyester/cotton broadcloth works well & is inexpensive), centering the main medallion. The pillows seem much nicer if the front is lined or quilted. The use of green painters tape for griding is my favourite method. Start by placing the tape diagonally corner to corner & evenly placed  outward from there. The tape helps to keep the grid even & is reusable to use in the other 45 degree direction. I was able to use the same tape to mark the grid on both pillows.  Then made a pair of flange pillows with green braiding to highlight the center & hide the start & stopping of the quilting stitches. The back is a more contemporary green stripe fabric, with a Velcro closing.

St. Patty's Postcards

Sharing the love of St. Patty's Day on the east coast...

I made & sent out postcards to some friends for St. Patrick's Day, using Boris, my Boston Terrier in some.
It's nice to get something in the mail other than bills...should bring some smiles!
They're fused appliquéd, machine stitched & must remain very flat. The stiffness is achieved by a product called Timtex & is sandwich between the top & the back is marked as a 'Postcard'  from a rubber stamp used by the card making suppliers. It's a fun small projects to share & I'm sure the postal workers delivering them get a smile too!

St. Patty's Day

I was taught the love & excitement of St. Patty's Day at an early age from my grandmother, on my mom's side. She was of an Irish descent & use to tell me stories of the St. Partrick's parade that use to take place & how her father would take the horses & braid green ribbons through their tails. She was very much Irish...in fact 'Irish' is what she called the kitten I gave her years ago...as the kitten had green eyes. Grandma's been gone a long time now & is fondly remembered by me... particularly on St. Patrick's Day. 

 I had made another one of these wall-hanging's  from the Quiltmaker Magazine & gave it to my father-in-law, as he too is Irish & just loved the wall hanging, he displays it proudly in his living room. You've gotta love the Irish!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Remembering Mitch's Quilt...How did I make that?

This quilt did help bring the stash down on the Thimbleberry fabrics & the awareness up on how little I had in lights fabrics...wonderful scrappy quilt, one of those 'one block wonders...design is formed from only one block!
Mitchell has been bring laundry back home to borrow the washer & drier & my folding skills... to complete & get his laundry out of my laundry room. He's been in the process of painting & replacing the flooring in his laundry room for over a month. Recently he brought over his quilt that I made him in 2007 & wanted it washed, he said it's only been in use for 6 months. Well I washed it & dried it...then marveled at the new beauty of it's softer look all quilted up, Beth Michilitis you did a wonderful job on the long-arm!

Now how did I do that pattern? it was so simple & a fast work shop that I had taken at the Thames Valley Guild years ago...where was the repeating block? the more questions I asked out loud, the more curious my husband & son became...well Mitch found the block & Bill got the trusty painters tape out to show me the block. I got the measuring tape out to see the size of the pieces that were pieced together. This is a quilt I will make again...maybe in brights, al spring & summer bloom colours!
 Looking at the quilt I laughed as the double piano key border as that happened by mistake. Getting carried away, I added one more round on top of the previous piano key row & loved the look. So I finished it in the double...sometimes mistakes do work for the best!

I could not see the block...

Yes! now I see the block...

Here's how I did it...

-  3 1/2" length by 2" width (finished square is 3" by 1 1/2"), cutting the same number of lights as darks, you too may be surprised...do you have more darks or more lights in your stash?
-  sew the length of two lights together, then add a dark on each end, add the outer making sure the darks are together meeting at the end & viola! keep this block next to you, then begin chain piecing to speed up the process...many,many blocks will be needed.
-  bring the dark corners together & the pattern will form. A design wall is helpful with this process.

After making that many blocks...one would think that you'd remember!
Good memory...not long!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

March has arrived!

I finished the March calendar quilt from a calendar series of quilts by Kim Schaefer. The monthly quilts finish at 20"w by 28"l, prefect to hang on metal doors with the window above. Lee Valley carry heavy duty magnets to hang & display these quilts. I made a summer one, I think June or July, when I was out at the cottage last summer & placed it over the window to keep the morning & afternoon sun out. Cute, fast little quilts to make, mine is all machine appliquéd & machine quilted. With the the finished front, I sprayed the batting & backing in place, then I did all the squares (which measure 4 1/2", perfect for those charm squares) with the stitch in the ditch before the appliquéd pieces were added . Once that was done,  I fused on all the appliquéd pieces down & stitched all around the pieces with the buttonhole stitch... right through the batting & backing,  using matching thread coloura to what was being stitched & viola! binding & a dowel hanger, now it's complete.
I added the March saying myself & hung it from the tree branch... now I see a March calendar banner!
April's is so cute I cannot wait to do it!

O-P-Q Snowmen A to Zzzz

The ornament, plum pudding, & quilt are now done...I'm sure it means quilt, even if it's not written to be outlined in embroidery floss. I'm on a quest to find polka dotted fabric in the yummy candy colours of the embroidery thread. April Cornell's collection may have what I want. With spring just around the corner I must finish this one up or it will turn into another one of those dreaded UFO monkeys! Why can I not have the energy ending a project as I have starting it...maybe I really don't want to say good-bye to it?