Monday, September 27, 2010
Friday, September 24, 2010
I've, finally, been able to get the borders assembled and added to the top....
This hasn't been an easy task...way too much "life" going on around here. Two of my daughters started classes at the university this week...so lots of juggling money to purchase books, getting schedules tweaked...hopefully it is all settled now.
So this morning I added the borders to this amazing quilt...the plan is to purchase backing fabric and baste this weekend. Whoo-hoo! Then I only have 3 quilts to quilt! WooT!!!
The rest of the day, I will focus on #1 of the twin baby quilts....hand quilting!
Have a great weekend!
Saturday, September 18, 2010
Have you heard I really admire Sarah Fielke???? Well, now you can see for yourself what all the hub-bub is about. If you visit her blog, The Last Piece, you can take a look-see at her new line of fabrics - From Little Things. And if that is not enough....you can leave a comment about her blog and fabric on Twitter, Facebook or your own blog...leave her a message that you mentioned her and you have a chance to win a bundle of fat quarters!!!! What could be better!
And now the second reason to adore these folks who put together such amazing quilt books....
I have been working on the Stashbuster, Material Obsession 2, every free minute...neglecting my children, dog, house and husband...to feed my need to complete this quilt.
While I am not finished, I am getting there. All the blocks are complete, and let me say that Kaleido-Ruler is fantastic, so here is a sneak peek....
And when everything fits together nicely, you get this lovely swirl on the back....be still my heart!
Placed on the floor....not the final placement...but just to get a look at the beauty....ahhh!
Thursday, September 16, 2010
What a treat! Yesterday the mailman left a package on my porch...THE KALEIDO- RULER...*insert angel's singing*
So I whipped out my new copy of Material Obsession 2 and found my project!
THE STASHBUSTER!!! It sounds like a ride at Cedar Point...I think the sub-title should be REPLENISH YOUR STASH!!!
With my trusty coffee close by, I began cutting strips of cool colors and warm colors...I have decided I am more of a warm color person...I love working with reds, yellows and oranges...
In between grocery shopping, doctor's appointments, and cooking dinner - I began sewing together strips.....
And in the wee morning hours...I am sewing strips...stay tuned....there will be more to come!
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
I thought it might be helpful to add a post explaining the steps in pick stitching....let me know what you think....
Tools of the trade....
I prefer Piecemakers Embroidery needles for pick stitching with perle cotton...I almost always use #8 perle cotton. It is easy enough to thread through the eye of the needle, but thick enough to add a decorative touch to your quilt. I use either masking tape, painters tape or quilters tape to mark my stitching line. I aways tell students to use the thimble they are most comfortable with...I use a leather thimble. I have tried many types, but I have kind of skinny fingers so I have found this to be the best thimble for me.
Wear the thimble on the middle finger of your dominant hand...with the stretchy part on your knuckle....YIKES! Those are my grandmother's hands - ha!
I use an 18 inch hoop so I don't have to re-hoop the quilt as often. The quilt should be in the hoop snug...but not too tight...you want to be able to push up a little hill from underneath the hoop...you don't want to be able to bounce a quarter off of it!
Use tape to mark off your stitching line...when you want a straight line...sometimes I choose to have a more organic line and then I don't mark at all...just eyeball it. All the work will be done on the top of the quilt...so you will begin and end on the top of the quilt...
Use about 18 inches of perle cotton and put a knot at one end....begin by taking the thread just under the top of the quilt (not through all three layers) and start about 1/2 inch away from your actual stitch line...slid the needle under the top of the quilt and come up next to your tape on the stitch line...give the thread a little tug until you pop the knot into the middle layers of the quilt..this is burying the knot!
Begin your first stitch by going straight down into the quilt - the needle should be perpendicular to the top of the quilt.
Here's where the big-time action begins...the hand on top of the quilt should be in a C position between your middle finger and your thumb...your other hand will be under the hoop. So if you are right handed - your right hand will be on top of the quilt and your left hand will be under the hoop...
There are several things that will happen simultaneously and you just have to practice and get a rhythm to become proficient...your thimble finger will rock the needle (eye of the needle) up and the point of the needle down into the layers of the quilt...while you take the needle down into the layers, the other hand (middle finger) will feel the point of the needle poking through and it will direct the needle back up into the layers of the quilt. While all of this is happening the top hand thumb will push down (while the middle finger underneath is pushing up) to create a little hill....this way the needle has some direction and come back up to the top layer of the quilt...your thumb on the top will feel when the needle has come back through. As you push up this little hill, the eye of the needle will rock back down and the point will be rocked up to complete the stitch. WHEW!!!
When pick stitching with perle cotton, I usually only stack a couple of stitches at a time...
I prefer larger stitches with perle cotton...a little larger than 1/4 inch...that is just a personal preference...I think it adds charm.
When you are ready to knot off the stitching...take your last stitch and make a loop and a knot...move the knot close to the quilt top....
Go back down into the hole of the last stitch and move your needle just under the top layer off to the side...come back up through the top layer...and pop the knot into the top to bury the knot.
Snip off the thread and you are finished with that line of stitching...
I cannot stress enough how the charm of pick stitching is that it is not perfect...the stitches are chunky and not always straight or in perfect little lines...it adds charm and whimsy to your quilt...I love it!
Monday, September 13, 2010
As I mentioned in the last post, I am eagerly awaiting a new ruler so I can get cookin' on a quilt from Material Obsession 2.
Finished the placemats and table runner....and they will soon be making their way to Japan!
And began hand quilting (with perle cotton, of course) one of the two Far,Far Away 2 quilts for the twins! Love quilting on linen....so soothing.
Nothing like a new book and some new fabric to light a fire under your bum...huh? Wishing you all a productive day....
Sunday, September 12, 2010
I walked into Sew To Speak the other day...and the first thing to greet me was a copy of Material Obsession 2. Now, I know this is not a new book...but new to me and to the shoppe. I own and have drooled over the first Material Obsession. And Sarah Fielke is my idol....she was the inspiration for this quilt.
So, of course, I had to buy it...and, of course, promptly found my new project! Oh, what about the other new projects I have going? Well, they will still be there I am sure...kind of like cleaning or laundry...it will still be there when I am ready. So the next day I picked up some fabrics to add to this new quilt....and I ordered a ruler from Marti Michell...cuz Sarah says it is a good idea. Far be it from me to argue with Sarah!
So as soon as the ruler arrives in my mailbox...I am focused...and immune from any further temptations. There will have just enough time to finish this table runner which must be finished this week. I am so all over it today - while I am calculating when my ruler will arrive from Georgia ( I think ???).
Enjoy your Sunday!
Friday, September 10, 2010
Taking a break from the "must do" projects...and working on a liberated basket quilt....
This is such a fun way to design a quilt...no templates...little measuring and the freedom to just go with the flow...I am working with a variety of yellow spots for my background.
Adding some pieced sashing should spice up these little beauties...I love making my own jiggy sashing!
And in my humble opinion, nothing goes together better than dots and gingham....well maybe argyle and dots!
Have a great weekend!
Monday, September 6, 2010
The weather was perfect....a little windy....but perfect for a wedding....
Molly and Mary McNeil....
My girls with the bride (cousin) and groom (new cousin!)
And as the evening progressed....with another cousin......
It was a great wedding!
Thursday, September 2, 2010
Molly and I collaborated today on a pincushion....a little cottage pincushion to be exact...
These flowers look much healthier than mine at the moment :(
I think it would be fun to take this design and enlarge it to make a door stop. Something to work on another day.
And....Molly finished the dresser scarf for g-ma!
Very pretty Molly!