Monday, September 30, 2013

Design Wall Monday

Nabby's Dowry is on my design wall today!

I spent more time fussing around about the fabric options for the sashing and setting triangles than actually sewing it together, but I am happy with how it is looking. I had plans to add a border, but it just didn't agree with my quilt, so I left it off.  I'm thinking about hand quilting this one since the homespuns make it so soft to work with, and it is a perfect fall project.
To see more design walls, hop over to Patchwork Times.
And then hop over to Sew We Quilt to see the batik themed quilts in the newest blog hop. I am still working away on my project, which I hope to finish in time to post on Wednesday. 

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Slow Down

Message from Nova Earth Serenity

Happy Slow Stitching Sunday!

Thanks for stopping by to see what I'm sewing today. 

Today I am hand quilting some stitches on my "Up, Up and Away" quilt, otherwise known as the "Accidental Quilt". I am quilting with four needles at a time across the quilt so that I don't have to move the hoop as frequently. As you can see I am almost half finished as I quilt the last rows on one end.

I am quilting approximately 1/4" from the seam line in the white triangles with pink and white threads. Why two thread colours? Because I was bored of stitching with white thread on white fabric, so I added the pink to keep my interest going. It's funny how I enjoy quilting the pink lines much more than the white ones... it's the same activity but adding colour makes stitching/life/everything more interesting!

The weather here has been glorious, warm and sunny and perfect fall weather, so I'll be stitching outside today. Pull up a chair and bring your stitching, and we'll spend some quality time relaxing and renewing our spirits.
Link up your blog post below and share with us what you are hand stitching on this glorious autumn Slow Stitching Sunday.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Scrappy Saturday - pastel blue

I cannot believe this is the last Saturday in September. This month just flew by in a blur, and I'm glad the colour of the month for the rainbow challenge scrappers was pastel blue. Yuck :( I don't like pastels much, so it worked out well for me that a quick/short month was a colour I don't enjoy as much.

I have been forcing myself to work with some light blue because I have scraps laying around to use up, and because I know that the light blocks will provide nice contrast to the  darker, richer colours in the finished quilt. I made a few more peel blocks to improve my applique stitches. 

And I have finished up a few more Alamo Star blocks left from the red month.
I am cutting some light blues to make a few more of these this week. This is my favorite way to make a quilt...
a few blocks at a time with no colour plan, using up scraps, and wondering how it's all going to work out in the end. Oh yah, and hoping it won't end up in the UFO closet!
To see what other scrap quilters are sewing today, hop over to SoScrappy and check out the links.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Nabby's Dowry

The layout of Nabby's Dowry Sew-Along from Heartspun Quilts was revealed last friday - click here to see the quilt. These are my blocks on the design wall and I switch them around every time I walk by. I really like the layout but can't seem to decide on the fabric for the sashing and setting triangles.

I have been auditioning possible fabrics.
I think the tan is too blah and washes out the blocks.

I'm liking the red for the sashing and the setting triangles. 
Is it too much red?!?!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Sewing and Canning

Thank you to everyone who commented on Monday's blog post about the Christmas quilt. I got some good ideas, and decided to keep the "loud" mug in the quilt. 

I moved it to the bottom corner block and have proceeded with sewing the quilt top together. 

The kitchen has been busier than the sewing room around here this week. Night frosts are killing the plants, so all the garden produce needed to be cleared out. I made Zucchini Salsa and it turned out great. I can not tell you how satisfying it is to make something yummy, using only the vegetables I have grown in my garden...zucchini, onions, tomatoes and peppers. I also found these dissolvable labels to try this year, so I hope they are easier to remove from the canning jars than the labels I usually have to scrub and scrub and scrub to remove.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Treadling on Tuesday

I will be treadling today, because it's Tuesday, and it has become part of my routine. I want to make sure I keep my treasure in good condition and the best way to do that is to keep it in running order with lots of oil and TLC.

After all, I do NOT want my treadle to become one of these... 


...a rusty old plant stand!!!

This old treadle base was found on my cousin's farm when she bought the property, so the story about what happened to the sewing machine is unknown. 
See the lucky (?) horseshoes laying on the treadle?
The Raymond sewing machines were made in Guelph, Ontario. To read an interesting article about the company - click here.
Don't let your old sewing machines become plant stands!
Give them a chance to stay in working order with some regular use and attention.

But don't have so much fun that you sew into the wee hours of the morning ...
you need regular maintenance/rest too or you might turn into a rusty old plant stand!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Design Wall Monday - Deckade The Halls

I have been working on the Deckade the Halls project since the Fat Quarter Shop announced the project a few months go. I decided to set the goal of making the entire quilt top from my Christmas scraps, and today all my blocks are on the design wall.

The quilt top isn't quite together yet, but the blocks have been completed.
I finished up the "cozy cocoa cups" (which were very fun to sew) but I am not sure I'm loving them in the layout. The top mug especially seems to be a bit more "attention seeking" than it ought to be!! What do you think?
Other than that one "loud" mug, I do love this quilt, and am eager to cut the sashings and finish up the top. 
To see more design wall, hop over to Patchwork Times.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Slow Stitching Sunday

I recently enjoyed a few days of rural therapy and personal restoration at my cousin Debbie's beautiful farm. 
Debbie and I have been very close since we were young kids and could always be found together at family functions causing trouble of some sort. And we spent every school holiday together that our parents would allow.
It had been a long time since we were able to enjoy hours of wonderful conversation together. After all these years, we never run out of things to talk about and we still think we are hilarious!!

We had great fun visiting with her chickens and collecting the eggs. She is new to having her own chickens, although her family always had them when we were growing up. We enjoyed including "the girls" in our chats and watching their antics. It was a big ol' hen party!! HA!

While she was at work during the day, I putzed around her farm, made soup with whatever veggies they had from the garden, played with their adorable little barn kitten who was quite interested in my quilting, and of course I spent countless hours hand quilting.

I made a lot of progress on my "Journey of a Quilter" project (pattern by Leanne Beasley) . This is a blurry photo of the block I worked on, which is the bottom left corner of the quilt. 

I started this quilt in July 2007, and it took 5 years to complete the hand embroidery. I have been quilting it a bit here and there over the last couple of years. It spent a lot of time with me and my brother at the hospital over the summer, and it sure does hold a lot of memories of my journey. 

I am making some Slow Stitching progress and have now finished hand quilting 7 of the 9 blocks! Today I will be putting in a few more stitches, and enjoying all the memories that this quilt holds, especially the ones enjoyed at my cousin's farm.

I hope you have time to enjoy some slow stitching today, and that you will link up your blog post below and share what you are working on.  

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Scrappy Saturday - Moving on to baby blues

It's a slow start to the day following Friday Night Sew-In!
What can I say??
FNSI is exhausting (in a good way)!

Some progress was actually made on the scrappy spools. Here is my collection after three months (yellow, aqua, and red) of spool construction....about 120 blocks.  It's looking good if I do say so myself!

I have made a few baby blue blocks, but there won't be many of those in my spool collection. I'm not a big fan of pastels except for baby quilts, and I haven't made many of those recently.

I also tried to work on my cocoa cup blocks for my Deckade the Halls quilt. Progress on these blocks was impeded by trying a new recipe for rhubarb slush (click here for recipe). Let's just say I love it and we'll leave it at that! 
If I work really hard over the weekend, and stay away from the rhubarb slushies, I might be able to post all my completed blocks for my design wall post on Monday. 
To see more rainbow challenge blocks, hop over to SoScrappy and check out the links.

Friday, September 20, 2013

It's Friday!

From Quiltville Friends

Today is the big reveal for the Nabby's Dowry mystery quilt over at Heartspun Quilts.
I posted my blocks on my design wall on Monday and can't wait to see what the real layout is!

And as if that isn't enough excitement for one day, it's also Friday Night Sew-In. I can't even remember the last time I enjoyed sewing on a friday night. You too can sign up over at Sugarlane Quilts
Have a quilty friday!

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Sewing Museum Link Up

This week Beth from Love, Laugh, Quilt is hosting a link up called "Sewing Museum". Of course I have to add my new collection to the list. Well, it's not really "a collection" as such, because there are only 2 items so far!'s a really small collection! 
Here are my two vintages sewing machines...

Sweet Baby Jayne on the left is my newly acquired 1964 white Featherweight 221K  (with a "tail", as the folks from "Treadle On" would say). And on the right is my 1901 Singer Treadle Model 127 with the sphinx egyptian decals (no "tail" so is people powered). Hey, I just realized that my Singer doesn't have a proper name. I have been calling her "Treadle" but that seems so impersonal! Do you have any names to suggest for this beauty?!?
To see more collections, hop over to Love Laugh Quilt. Enjoy!
I love both of my antique treasures and use them at least once a week to keep them in good working condition. They each have projects that are all their own from start to finish.
This is Baby Jayne's project this week... teeny tiny little half square triangles, which I am sewing with a 1/8" seam allowance, and the machine is doing a great job with these little bits. I plan to use the blocks as a border for a stitchery that I am starting to work on.
And I am sewing with the thread collection which I won at the fall fair last weekend! It is an 18 spool collection celebrating the Coats & Clark 200th Anniversary and I am delighted to have the selection of colours to play with!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Generous People

Photo stolen from The Cozy Quilter!
Do you remember my post in the summer about making "slab blocks" for Calgary flood victims? (click here to see it)  My quilty friend Gail collected some slab blocks and made this beautiful quilt top to contribute to the efforts. Gail sent the quilt to Cheryl Atkinson and a photo was posted on Cheryl's blog on this post .... in case you are looking for it, our quilt is 5th photo from the end of the post!
Over 1350 quilts were collected by Cheryl Atkinson and distributed in Calgary this past Saturday - you can read this blog post on quilt distribution. There are so many wonderful, generous people in the world!
And a few of those generous people have been sending me treats in the mail. Just look at these tiny triangles that came in the mail... you just know I'll make something from these little cuties!  
From Red Brolly
I thank each one of you who sent an email, a card, a prayer, a gift, and/or fabric scraps from your collection to raise my spirits and surround me with loving thoughts.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Treadling on Tuesday

I am doing a little treadling today, but most of the treadling I'm showing in this post was done on Sunday afternoon because Bonnie Hunter hosted her famous QuiltCam. I enjoy treadling while listening to Bonnie chat about her projects and her quilting adventures.

I ran out of bobbin thread, and while trying to remember how to wind the bobbin, I cleaned and oiled the machine. Really I was just procrastinating the bobbin winding!

This machine has a vibrating shuttle bobbin, and it does hold a lot of thread, so I don't have to refill the bobbin very often and always forget how to do it! Also I think the belt is getting a little loose from wear and I need to tighten it up, which would help wind the bobbin easier.

I am continuing to sew my scrappy coin strips on pieces of old adding machine tape.  I will be done sewing coins when the adding machine tape runs out. I am starting to think about sewing these strips together into a quilt top. I wonder how big of a quilt this stack of blocks will make?!?

Monday, September 16, 2013

Design Wall Monday

This is what is on my design wall today - all my blocks for the Nabby's Dowry sew-along mystery over at Heartspun Quilts. There are 13 blocks, which is funny because I sewed the last four blocks on friday the 13th!
Now, what layout would use 13 blocks?? Maybe there are still more blocks to sew? I have no idea about the layout (which will be posted on friday) but I like this one. It would be a perfect size for a table topper on my dining room table. 
What a fun project this has been, with a little bit of sewing each week.
To see more design wall postings, hop over to Patchwork Times.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Slow Stitching Sunday

I cannot believe that the summer is already over and September is half over.  Did you accomplish your goals for the summer? 
Me either...not by a long shot. But I am okay with that.
I spent most of my non-working time this summer at my brother's place and did a lot of hand work. This is a dreadful photo that my brother took of me while working on my scrap rug late at night. He was having trouble getting comfortable and falling asleep, so I would keep him company by doing some quiet hand work.
My blue and yellow scrap rug is finally finished!  My technique must be improving because this is my second rug and it lays much flatter than the first oneI used the Aunt Philly's tool and instructions to make these rugs and really enjoy the process.

Here is Miss Molly the Princess refusing to look at me because I don't have treats. She doesn't co-operate in any way unless food is involved!
But she does love my her new rug, and lays on it every chance she gets.
I wasn't real happy with the way the last strip of the rug is very obvious where the last stitch is, so on my next rug I will try to improve on that ending part.

My slightly revised goal for the rest of September is some great advice from Dory... 
"just keep swimming, just keep swimming". 
Did you see Finding Nemo? 
LOVE that movie!
I will change Dory's advice slightly to "just keep stitching, just keep stitching"!
Did you see the 16 fantastic links posted on last week's Slow Stitching post? So many inspiring projects to peek in on!
What hand work are you working on this week?
Please link up your blog post below and share your stitching with us.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Two posts in one day!?!?!'s hopefully going to be a quilty Saturday at my house. Starting right after I finish washing the dishes, take the dog for a walk, clean up the garden, cut the grass, and tidy up around here!  
I might also get side-tracked into canning some of the millions of tomatoes and peppers in the garden... the garden went a little wild while I was away this summer. This was today's harvest. What the heck happened to make those monster zucchinis?!?!?

Why I really wanted to make a second blog post today, is that there are so many fun things going on that I don't want you to miss.
1) If you are looking for something quilty to enjoy on the internet, hop over to the Pin It Blog Hop or look at the Pinterest photos. I didn't join in on this hop since I didn't have time to make new pincushions, but here are some of the ones I have made in the past. Treat yourself by visiting the site and I promise you will enjoy seeing all the wonderful pincushions made for the blog hop. Some are gorgeous, some are sweet, some are hilarious, and all of them are creative and amazing. Click here to enjoy the pin cushions.
2) If you live in Ontario, enjoy the gorgeous weather and go visit a fall fair this weekend. My favorite one today is the Fergus Fall Fair. I judged some of the classes yesterday and had soooo much fun. People are amazingly creative, and you really get a sense of that at a fall fair. If you go today, email me and let me know if I won any ribbons!!
3) And last but not least, it's QuiltCam time in 15 minutes, so go get a project and join in the fun. Should I treadle or featherweight or hand stitch????? So much fun to be had!

Scrappy Saturday

The colour of the month for September for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge is pastel blue. I decided that I should first finish up some of my aqua blocks from July, and sprinkle in what I can in the lighter blues. Here are some Carrie Nation blocks that I finished sewing this week. 

I am continuing to practice my applique skills with my scrappy peels block and think I am improving my technique. This is my favorite one so far, with an aquatic theme.

I finished stitching 5 peel blocks, 3 red and 2 aqua. I am working on a third light blue block and might try to make a few in the colours I missed earlier in the year for this project (maybe yellow and green?)

To see what other scrappy quilters are sewing this week, hop over to SoScrappy.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Nabby's Dowry

Today's the day that the next step of Nabby's Dowry is posted. 
These are the 9 blocks I've made over the summer, and am so curious to see what we're doing next. Last week Pam said...change is a comin'...
hop over and see (click here)