Wednesday, December 30, 2015

2015 Summary

I can't believe tomorrow is the last day of the year already!!!  Where does time go???  It is time to look back over the last 12 months to see what I have accomplished this year with my sewing projects...

January:  A Gift for my aunt...


February:  I finished a UFO... a wool applique wall hanging.  I hand appliqued and hand quilted this one.
March:  A baby quilt for my husband's cousin's baby.

I also completed an improvisational piecing project started at a Jacquie Gering workshop in the summer of 2013.
April:  Another baby quilt--this one was made with Cat in the Hat fabrics.

May:  I made this purple quilt for the chemo unit at our hospital with some fabric donated to the Elgin Piecemakers along with some of my own fabric.

July:  I put together this quilt top for an adult chemo patient at our local hospital.  It has been quilted and bound but I don't have a picture of it all done yet.

I also made a scrap vortex quilt in July...Here is the flimsy but I never did post a picture of the completed quilt on my blog.

November:  I finished off a baby quilt in waiting.

I also made a table runner for my MIL for Christmas.

And I finished cross stitching the Frank Lloyd Wright "Tree of Life" window.

I made two placemats for Meals on Wheels.

In December, I made a few Christmas gifts... a friendship bag:

A Prairie Point star ornament for my friend, Julie.

I made this hot pad for another friend, Pat.

I still have quite a few workshop UFO's to finish off in 2016.  Here's hoping that I will have some time in the sewing room to work on them!  The London Friendship Quilters Guild will be having their biannual quilt show this fall so I want to have some quilts done to enter into the show.   I need to get sewing!

Monday, December 21, 2015

Modern Quilt Guild Gift Exchange

The London Modern Quilt Guild met in mid December for a fun meeting of food and games!  We had decided that we would do a gift exchange at the November meeting. We each had to make a small Friendship bag from the pattern on P.S. I quilt and then put something in the bag of our choice.

I decided to use black and white selvages and some fun checkerboard fabric to make my bag.

I quilted it organically...

and used this cute red, black and white Argyll fabric for the lining.

I added some cards made by a local photographer.  We played a game in which we passed the parcels around the table to the left and right, and across the table as someone read a story to us. 

I received this pretty purple batik bag with a cute fat quarter inside! 

It was fun to see all the bags and the treats that they held!

Friday, December 11, 2015

Peppermint Star

Christine and I got together to sew this week.  I had found a pattern for a Christmas ornament on the internet so we decided to make one each and then do other sewing. I decided to use 16 different red and white fabrics for my project, hence my name for my ornament...Peppermint Star.

We were so engrossed in sewing that we did not take any pictures as we sewed!  The silver button adds just a bit of shine and hides all of the points in the middle!  

If you would like to make an ornament like this, you can find the pattern at Super Mom, No Cape.  She calls it a "Prairie Point Star".  I think I would like to make another one as I will be giving this to a friend who does not read my blog for Christmas.  

Saturday, December 5, 2015

I found a kit in the sewing room...

I am in the process of cleaning out my sewing room.  When we finished our basement several years ago, we had a smallish sewing room made which I used for a little while. It does not have a window and I felt isolated from the rest of the family when I was in there, so I started sewing on the dining room table instead.  A few weeks ago, we cleaned out what used to be the home office and bought new custom sewing furniture for the new sewing room.  You can read about my new furniture here.  I am slowly cleaning up the old sewing room to make it into an organized fabric and sewing supplies storage area.
Here is a "before" picture...not a pretty sight...

Great progress has been made but I still have a ways to go.  I go at it in 15 minute intervals, maybe once or twice a week. It is slowly becoming a more useful space. The shelves actually have bins of fabric on them now...

This week, I found a bin of UFO's and kits waiting to be made.  One of the kits I found was for a hot pad.  The fabric and pattern were all in a little bag.  When Christine was here earlier this week, I worked on the hot pad while she pieced a backing for a new Christmas quilt.

There are 28 5" squares of fabric in this hot pad! 

Tonight, I hand sewed the points of each folded square down and did the binding.

Here it is with all the points sewn down:

The binding is cut on the bias so that it will go around the curve smoothly.

Here is the back.

This hot pad is a gift for someone who does not read my blog. I hope she likes it!

I am linking up to Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Christmas Table Runner

I made this table runner last Saturday at our guild's annual quilt 'til you wilt day.  It is a Christmas gift for my MIL.

I have made several table runners for her over the years.  She always has one of them on her dining room table.  I made a winter table topper for her a few years ago. A couple of weeks ago, she mentioned that she would like a Christmas runner as well,  I plan on giving her this gift a bit early so she can use it before Christmas. 

My MIL is a kind and generous person and it is always a pleasure to make things for her.  

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Quilt 'til You Wilt

Yesterday was a glorious day of sewing, chatting with friends, and being inspired by the projects of others. The London Friendship Quilters Guild hosts a Quilt 'til You Wilt day every November. It all starts at 9am although some people arrived earlier than that.  By 8pm, most had wilted and headed home but during those 11 hours, the machines were humming, the irons were hot and the rotary cutters were slicing! 

I brought three projects with me. A couple of weeks ago, my MIL mentioned that she would like a new Christmas table runner for her dining room table.  It just so happened that I had some fabric in my stash that I could use for the runner...LOL.  I spent most of the day working on the runner. I used a couple of blocks from a pattern for a full sized quilt that Christine had printed out from the Moda Bake shop.

I made one block like this...the pattern called for a four patch in the middle but I changed it.

Here is the first star block of two. The star points are supposed to be wonky.

I quilted it organically with cream coloured thread. Several others were doing organic quilting yesterday too.

I used the green fabric for the binding.

Do you remember the Quilt of Valour that I mentioned a couple of weeks ago?  I had brought it home from our last LFQG meeting and my job was to sew the binding on and finish off the quilt.  Somehow, the binding was lost between the meeting and home. Another member of the guild found it and called me to see if it belonged to the quilt I had brought home. Her husband dropped it off at my workplace and yesterday, I sewed it onto the quilt.  This was project number two for the day.

This will be today's slow Sunday stitching project.

Project number three was a stitch and flip UFO that I started in the Spring of 2014 at a workshop with Jacquie Gering. I did some cutting and made some parts but did not take any pictures.  My phone was almost dead by the end of the day and I wanted to save some power for the trip home in case of emergencies.

It was a fun and productive day!  I have not had very much time to sew this year and enjoyed every minute of my day yesterday!  I am linking to Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Hand Quilting at the Curling Club

I have had this wool project basted and ready to hand quilt for months now.  It may become a pillow or it may become a wall hanging...I am not sure yet.  I spent some time working on it while watching my daughter curl on Friday night.  I am quilting around the wool appliqué and have not decided what to do after that.  

My daughter curls in a mixed competitive league.  One of her teammates asked if I was crocheting.  His girlfriend admired my project.  She knew it was not crochet. 

I hope to get some more stitches in this week.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Improv with Intent: Workshop with Cheryl Arkison

I spent a glorious day at a Cheryl Arkison "Improv with Intent" workshop in St. Mary's, Ontario just over a week ago.  We started out with a playing with fabric exercise. Each table group had a pile of Cheryl's scraps on it and we were told to grab two pieces and sew them together.  Then, pass it to the person on our left.  Then, we added another piece...etc. 
We ended up with several improv blocks that Cheryl displayed on a design wall. Cheryl encouraged all of us to play with fabric on a regular basis and not to always work from a pattern.  Personally, I would rather play than follow a pattern...

We were to bring an idea, or a picture or something that would inspire our improv project for the workshop.  I brought a picture of Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater.  My husband and I took an in depth tour of Fallingwater near Ohiopyle, PA earlier this year.  We have toured several of FLW's buildings including Kentuck Knob near Ohiopyle, PA, Talliesen in Spring Green, WI, the Darwin Martin House in Buffalo, NY and Greycliffe in Derby, NY, as well as his studio in Oak Park, IL.  All of his buildings and the stories that go with them are fascinating.

I started by making a couple of architectural features of the house that stood out for me.

This column of windows is sandwiched between the two chimneys of the house. The chimney fabric actually has a brick pattern on it.

Next, I worked on the stairway that goes down from the living room of the house down to the water.

Here is everything I had on the design wall by the end of the day.

Everyone had a chance at the end of the day to explain their projects and talk about what they were going to do next.  I did not want to go home...I just wanted to keep sewing.

Here is Christine and her blocks that she had done by the end of the day.

Thanks, Cheryl!  I had a wonderful time and can't wait to get working on my project again! 

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Cheryl Arkison's Lecture

A week ago, I went to a truck show/lecture by Cheryl Arkison from Calgary, Alberta. She was in Ontario for several days to do a couple of trunk shows and teach 4 classes in London and Toronto. She brought a suitcase full of quilts to show to us! Cheryl loves to use scraps and made the above slab quilt using her scraps which she had sorted into piles by colour.

This quilt was made using her low volume scraps.  I love how soft it looks!

Cheryl recommends making baby quilts no wider than 40 inches so that you don't have to piece the backing. This baby quilt was quick and easy to make.

A crossword puzzle was the inspiration for this quilt.

The wonky yellow triangles are made log cabin style.  Who said you should not use yellow in a quilt???

This quilt was inspired by reading Gwen Marston's book, Liberated Quiltmaking.  I have a copy of this book and several others by Gwen on my shelf.

Cheryl went through a green phase and decided to try making the corner stones and sashing the focus of this quilt.

Inspired by a mountain meadow, this was my favourite quilt that Cheryl showed.

A perfect quilt for a sewing room wall!

Her husband challenged her to make a quilt that looks like an equalizer on an old stereo.   The lights just glow on that black background!

I bought a copy of Cheryl's latest book and she signed it for me.  It was a fun and inspiring evening.  Now, I just want to spend my time in my sewing room playing with fabric...  Thanks, Cheryl!

It is Slow Sunday stitching time tomorrow...  I bought home a Quilt of Valour from the London Friendship Guild meeting this past Thursday night so I will put putting the binding on it tomorrow. Somehow, between the meeting and home, I have misplaced the binding.  I think I might have some fabric around here somewhere that I can use instead...