Friday, August 18, 2017

Building Houses with Jacquie Gering

I have taken classes with Jacquie Gering, past president of the Modern Quilt Guild, several times.  The first class was stitch and flip which I took with other members of the London Friendship Quilters Guild.  You can see my stitch and flip garden here.   My next class with Jacquie was at Black Creek Pioneer Village "Quilts at the Creek" and was all about improvisational piecing.   Last year, Jacquie was in St. Mary's and taught a two day "Quilting with Your Walking Foot" class.    Jacquie was a teacher before she quit her job to quilt full time.  She is energetic and enthusiastic and takes great delight in passing on what she has learned as she explores modern quilt making.  Jacquie is a life-long learner and encourages her students to keep trying new things.  Jacquie teaches concepts and then sets her students free to make their own individual projects using what they have learned.

This past Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, I took two classes with Jacquie.  On Monday, Christine, Carol and I participated in her "Mid-century Modern Houses" workshop in St. Mary's, sponsored by Hyggeligt, a fabric store specializing in Kaffe Fasset fabrics in St. Mary's.  We were asked to bring a focus fabric (a print) and lots of solid scraps as well as some larger solids and a background fabric.

First, we cut up our fabrics into squares and rectangles of various random sizes.

You can see my focus fabric has cameras on it!  Jacqui encouraged us to use fabrics with colours from our focus fabrics as well as fabrics that just "go" with those colours, including some bolder colours.

We chain pieced pairs and then put the pairs together to make building blocks for our houses.

Here is my first house:

We started with simple and then explored other shapes and sizes of houses.

This house has a carport!  One of the other quilters thought a smart car would fit perfectly in my carport!

Next, I added a house with an attic.

Every house quilt needs an outhouse!

Here is my neighbourhood by the end of the day.  I have more ideas for future neighbourhood development... The turquoise grunge fabric will be my background.

Thanks, Jacquie for a fun day!   I will blog about the second class later.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Snow in August

I have managed to get quite a bit of snow done on my counted cross stitch snowmen picture over the past couple of weeks.  There was lots of time for stitching in the car as my husband and I went away for the weekend last week.  Today, I did some more stitching in the car on our way home from visiting my MIL.  The blue and grey blob in the sky will be a blue jay once it has some outlining done. There are two birds on the ground between these two snowmen too. Maybe they will appear sometime over the next week or so.

For comparison purposes, here is where I was two weeks ago...

Once I get all of the cross stitching done, I will start the outlining. These pictures always look much better once the outlining is done.

I bought myself some self threading needles this week.  I have not had a chance to try them out yet.  The eyes of my needles seem to be getting smaller these days (LOL) and someone mentioned that these needles are easier to thread.  Has anyone tried them before?  I thought they were worth a try for $2.39!  I bought them at the drug store, of all places! This particular drug store specializes in mobility aids and special equipment for seniors and others with special needs (including those who can't see the hole in the needle when sewing!)

I was out for a walk this morning and met this fellow.  He's a looker!

I managed to catch the right angle at the fountain on the waterfront this morning for this picture:

I will be linking up with the other slow stitchers at Kathy's blog in the morning.

Friday, August 11, 2017

Merry Kissmoose!

Would you like to kiss my moose?  He is under the mistletoe, ready to pucker up!  This block took most of two evenings to make...there were lots of pieces to cut out.

And lots of pieces to keep straight and sew together properly.

I have made 14 blocks of 15 for this quilt along with Lorna at Sew Fresh Quilts.  The last block will be out this Saturday.  I plan on making two more blocks of my own design to make this a 16 block quilt.  I will be putting the partridge in a pear tree block on the back of the quilt. I will have to figure out a layout next and add the sashing.  I am hoping to have this quilt ready for use in my living room this December. 

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Liberated Sampler Blocks 1-8

I made my 8th liberated sampler block tonight.  Christine was here to sew with me--she was away at the cottage for the past couple of weeks so we spent lots of time catching up and chatting as we sewed. This is a variation of one of the blocks from  The block that is suggested has 51 pieces in a 6" block.  I opted to do the easy version...

As promised, here is a picture of all of my blocks so far.  Eight down, only 56 to go!

I had hoped to make one a week but I don't always have time.  This quilt will be my long term project. 

Sunday, July 30, 2017

CCS and Some Old Slow Stitching

I added some more cross stitches to my snowman project this week. The above picture shows how it looks now.  There was a fair bit of progress since I last posted about his project...

I will be working to the right of this section next.

Yesterday, my MIL and I went to a Canada 150 quilt show at the Lambton Heritage Museum near Grand Bend, Ontario.  They had quite a few quilts from Lambton County, all of which included a lot of hand stitching. I picked out a few to show today for Slow Sunday Stitching.  This first one was made for Canada's 100th birthday and includes many signatures which are all hand embroidered.

Here is a close up of one of the blocks.

There was a second Centennial quilt which included more embroidery signatures.

The signatures are not obvious in most of the blocks until you take a closer look.

This signature quilt was made by the ladies of Bethel Church.  I was quite impressed by the embroidered picture of the church in the middle of the quilt. 

The person who did the embroidery spent many hours working on this!

Of course, there were a few hexie quilts too.  This one was my favourite--it was made in the 1930's.

Here is a close up--those are very small hexies!

My MIL is not a quilter but enjoyed seeing all of the quilts and hearing my explanations of how they were made. If you have a chance to go to see this exhibit, it is well worth the trip!

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Canada 150 Pillow

My Canada 150 pillow is finished!  It was not done in time for Canada Day but the whole year is a celebration so in my books, I am happy with the timing of my finish. As you can see, I used prints instead of solids for my Canada 150 symbol.  I used a light grey Aurifil thread for the organic quilting.  I will try to put all of the unsewing that happened with this project behind me and just enjoyed the finished pillow!

The back is a red OXOX batik fabric that I purchased a few years ago.  Here is a close up...

I added a hidden zipper so that the pillow can be washed if necessary.  I also tend to change the covers on my pillows seasonally--it is easier to store the covers than to store lots of pillows.

Here are my two Canada Pillows on the bench in my front hall.  Happy Birthday, Canada!

Tonight, our family went down to Port Stanley for a walk on the pier followed by ice cream at our favourite dairy bar, Shaw's, on the way home.  These ducks were jockeying for position on a mostly submerged log.

I will be linking up with Amanda Jean's Finish it up Friday tomorrow.

Monday, July 24, 2017

A Very Shiny Nose...

Rudolph, the Red Nosed Reindeer, had a very shiny nose!

Tonight, I sewed the 13th of 15 Christmas blocks for the Sew Fresh Quilts Holly Jolly Christmas quilt.  I decided to make my reindeer block into a Rudolph block by changing the nose from black to red.  The eyes are quite small--only 1/2" by 1/2".  Here is my completed block...

I cut the pieces out on Saturday at the Guild Sewing day. There was a tiny bit of unsewing with this block...  I think Rudolph looks very festive!

Here are all of my blocks: (The partridge block will be going on the back of the quilt...I'm not fond of the brown--not enough contrast and it looks dull with all of the other colourful fabrics I have used for my blocks.)

I had a visitor in the bush outside my window yesterday.  This female robin was eating the berries off of my Oregon grape holly bush.  As you can see, there are not many berries left on this bush.

My red echinacea plant is in full bloom at the moment.  It is beside my front porch so I see it every day as I go in and out of the house. 

I will be linking up with Lorna at Sew Fresh Quilts on Wednesday.   I have a couple of other finishes to share later this week, so stay tuned!

Saturday, July 22, 2017

LFQG Summer Sewing Day

Today was our London Friendship Quilters Guild annual summer sewing day.  I had all of my projects, sewing machine and supplies packed up last night and ready to take out to the car this morning.  I brought along three things to sew today:

First up, I wanted to get this block quilted and made into a pillow.  I brought along some variegated thread that I thought would be perfect for the organic quilting that I had planned...I got about 2/3's done and then decided that I hated the variegated thread.

I spent the next hour and a half unsewing all of my quilting...not a productive start to my day.

The fabric on the back of the quilt will not show in the finished pillow as it will be inside the pillow. I ended up using a light grey thread and quilting it organically.

I then put the Canada 150 pillow aside to work on my second project...making and attaching the binding to this comfort quilt for an adult chemo patient at our local hospital--an outreach project of another guild that I belong to--the Elgin Piecemakers.  

This went much smoother that project number one, with no seam ripper involvement at all!  I will be doing the hand stitching tomorrow for my slow Sunday stitching project.

I did some of the hand stitching tonight while watching Grantchester on TV.

My third project barely got started--I have the pieces cut out for my next block, a reindeer, for my Holly Jolly Christmas quilt that I am making through a sew along at Lorna's blog, Sew Fresh Quilts. I hope to get it sewn together sometime this week before the next block pattern comes out on Saturday.

I will post pictures of the finished pillow and Christmas block later this week.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Sewing Night

For the last three sewing nights with Christine, I have been working on a Canada 150 block.  It is a paper pieced pattern that I found online. Here is the link.  I found this block a bit challenging...there was some unsewing involved!  I decided to use prints instead of solids for my block.  In the end, it all worked out and the block lies flat.  I will probably not be making another one!

I decided to make a pillow with my block so I added borders to make it the right size for my pillow form.  I will quilt it and put the pillow together on Saturday at our guild sew-in day. I still have to figure out what to use for the back of the pillow.  I don't have enough of the grey.

After finishing the Canada 150 block, I made another block for my liberated sampler quilt.  This one is called Hashtag.  I am using a little bit of my focus fabrics in each block. I have seven blocks done now.  There are 64- 6" blocks in this quilt.

I will try to post a picture of all my blocks next time.