Monday, May 02, 2016

Design Wall Monday

Finally... on the design wall is the last quilted Swoon block!

This last block was pieced and quilted in the last couple of days, hoping to reach April's UFO goal. It really has been fun to machine quilt these 24" blocks. I just have to mention these bobbin washers that I regularly use when machine quilting. 

They really do seem to make the thread movement through the bobbin area much smoother. The washers just fit right down inside, and you put the bobbin in on top of it. I don't have any financial investment in this company, I'm just a satisfied customer!

The backing of this block was pieced from the last remaining bits of the "Mama said Sew" yardage.

This has been my UFO focus project for the past two months, but I actually starting working on this quilt in October 2013, so it's been in production for a long time.
The next step is to connect the 9 blocks using the Quilt-As-You-Go method that Andrea shows in her tutorial here. I will sew the blocks and sashing together by machine, and complete the sashing stitching on the back with hand stitching. 
This quilt is so close to being finished! I might even finish it within the 3 year mark... woohoo! 
To see more design wall postings, hop over to Judy's.

Sunday, May 01, 2016

Slow Sunday Stitching Muster

I enjoy discovering new words, and my word of the week is "muster". Do you know what it means? I know this word in the context of "passing muster", which means making the grade or being successful. But what is a "muster station"? 
I had to ask Mr. Wikipedia who says that it is a place to gather for emergency drills on a ship and it is where the lifesaving equipment would be located.

Which led to the question...
where is my life muster station and what kind of equipment does it have? 
Here it is right here!
My muster station is beside any lake and there are lots of needles, threads, and fabric. What else would you need to get you safely through life? The more stressful life is, the more you need the stitching!

You might also want some strong support people to throw you into a lifeboat as necessary!
And you'd want lots of fresh air and nature, especially birds and trees.
Just look at these lovely creatures (I think they are red breasted mergansers) that were hanging around as I was stitching this weekend. It was the perfect sight to see as I was stitching this block.
Life Is Beautiful block #23

And here it is... my most recently completed Life Is Beautiful block. It says: "don't look for inspiration, be the inspiration"
It's my favourite block so far! LOL

What's inspiring you this week and what are you working on? Link up your blog post below and share your hand stitching project.

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Scrappy Saturday

It's the end of orange month for the rainbow scrappers. It was a real stretch for me to make this block using only my orange scraps and I purchased a couple of orange FQ's at Creativ Festival last week.
I love how they look in this Mad City Mama block (pattern by Bonnie Hunter). 
To see more orange projects, hop over to the RSC link up.

Friday, April 29, 2016

Circa 2016

These are the two blocks posted last week for the Circa 2016 quiltalong over at Temecula Quilts.

They are so cute and easy to make. The square in a square blocks in the middle were a bit large, but when I trimmed them down a little they became perfect to fit in the centre of the blocks and no points were lost!

Hop over to Temecula to see the next step.
Happy Friday!

Thursday, April 28, 2016

UFO Update

There hasn't been much quilting time this week, but I did finally get another Swoon block quilted. I used all Aurifil threads, which my machine loves, so the quilting went smoothly, with no thread breakage even at high speeds! 

This is the backing for the block which includes a little 8" version of the swoon block, and some of the leftover backing fabric.

Here is quilted block #8 on the design wall.
In the next two days I just have to piece one more 24" block backing and then quilt the last Swoon block to meet my April UFO goal.
Totally doable!

Monday, April 25, 2016

Design Wall Monday

No the scrap vortex is not on the wall again today! It's still in surgery.
On the design wall today are 25 of the 44 blocks I've sewn for the Scrap Dance Tango mystery quilt.
They are not in any particular order... just randomly placed on the wall for a photo. It's a lot of red and green. I think I need to add more blue and purple so it doesn't look so much like a Christmas quilt. 
To see more design walls, hop over to Patchwork Times.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Slow Sunday Stitching - Creativ Festival

Thanks for dropping by to see what the Slow Sunday Stitchers are up to! 
Today I want to tell you about the Creativ Festival this week and the 3 different hand stitching techniques I enjoyed while there.

1) Beading:
I was sponsored by CQA to teach quilt embellishing and had two classes of enthusiastic stitchers. You can see the kits I put together on Friday's post here. Some of the students had no previous beading experience, so I hope they enjoyed their first exposure to this fun technique. The first class was so full and busy that I didn't even think of taking photos. So these are the students from second class, concentrating on their stitching.

2) Hand stitched hexagons: When I wasn't teaching, I was at the CQA booth doing demos on how to make a hexagon from a circle. It's a really fun and quick technique and you can see it on Jackie White's video here. Jackie took these photos of Leslie Whitby and I teaching the technique at the demo table.
Do you see that great quilt right beside the demo table? I loved this quilt in the CQA juried show in 2014 and was very happy to see it again in the booth. The quilt is called Flower Basket Medallion and was made by Deborah Holden. I wanted to take photos of it when I first saw it, but photos were forbidden at the NJS... until now!
I found out that for the first time, we will be able to take photos at the National Juried Show 2016! I am so excited about that decision. It makes it so much more fun for me to be able to take photos of quilts, techniques, block designs, and embellishments that I see at a show and want to remember.

3) Hand quilting:

Look who I saw when I arrived at the International Centre - my friend Judy Pearce from the Mennonite Relief Sale! You can read more about her here and here. It was an old fashioned quilting bee set up right there in the middle of all the activities. 
Ahhh... these are my people, my quilting tribe!

And you are also "my people"! Thanks for dropping by and reading this long post, and for being part of the global community of hand stitchers!
So what kind of hand stitching are you enjoying today? Link up your blog post below and share your slow progress.