Sunday, June 23, 2019

Slow Stitching

Today is the 7th anniversary of Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching Link up!  She has been inspiring me and many others to slow down and work on a handwork project with each and every link up!  Kathy has asked us to share our favourite handwork project on our blogs today ---But first, I want to show you my slow progress on the Waterlilies Frank Lloyd Wright cross stitch I have been working on.  I added some more outlining this past week as well as some more cross stitching in the upper right corner. 


When we went to Nashville for QuiltCon earlier this year, we visited the Tennessee State Museum and I purchased this print in the gift shop.  I finally had it framed and it is now hanging on the wall.  It gives a whole new meaning to "Barn Quilt".  (I took the picture on the floor as there was too much glare when it was on the wall.)


My husband and I dated for a few years before we got married and for most of that time, we lived in separate cities.  I spent many weekends taking the train to where his family lived so that we could see each other.  One summer, on the train, I spent my time working on a counted cross stitch picture, which is framed and still hangs on the wall in our guest room.  This was a kit purchased at a house party, somewhat like a Tupperware party, but for craft kits.


I seemed to be attracted to quilt themed cross stitch patterns years ago...  The next one was a purchased pattern and took over a year to make. This one is hanging in our family room.


One of my early cross stitch pictures is on the wall in my sewing room.  No quilt in this one, but there is an old treadle sewing machine.  I have my grandmother's treadle sewing machine in my dining room.


I made several other pictures as well, many of which were given away as gifts.  My daughter and each of my twin nieces have counted cross stitch Christmas stockings as well.  


Finn is enjoying the longer summer evenings and going for walks.


My honeysuckle started blooming this week.  The major garden projects are done and now we just have to do maintenance jobs for the summer.  I'm looking forward to slow stitching in the gazebo sometime soon.

Monday, June 17, 2019

Accidental Boxes


I finished binding this quilt that I made from a Bali Pop jelly roll on the weekend.  As you may remember, I started this quilt several years ago and made the triangles...then it got put away and I did not touch it again until this past spring when I took the triangles to an Elgin Piecemakers sewing day to see if I could make something with them.  I had long ago lost the original pattern that I was trying to follow.  I laid the triangles out on the floor and started to play with arranging them.  By the end of the day, I had sewn the top together, except for the outer border, which I had to purchase.


I was surprised to see the 3-D boxes when the top was together...this was a pure accident!  This quilt will be a gift for someone who does not read my blog.


This is our shade garden beside our shed and behind the gazebo.  There has been a lot of rain this spring so everything is looking quite lush at the moment. One of my hostas is called "Quilting Bee".


This is the view from the gate as you enter the yard.  There is a rain barrel just to the left of the walkway which explains the hose and watering cans at the side of the picture.


The mulching is all done.  There are a few smaller jobs to do around the yard this week but we are in good shape for having company this weekend for a BBQ.  Hopefully, the weather will co-operate and we can eat outside.


Saturday, June 15, 2019

Binding and FLW


The outlining of the Waterlilies window cross stitch project continues.  With all of these Frank Lloyd Wright patterns, the outlining brings cohesiveness and meaning to the "blobs" of colour.  I will be working on this again tomorrow for Slow Sunday Stitching.


I made another 40 swap blocks this week...The picture above shows some blocks in progress--I did not take a picture of the finished blocks.  They will be swapped in July and August (June was already completed).  Just for fun, I calculated that it takes 3/4 of a yard of fabric to make 40 blocks...


We spent more time this week working on the gardens.  The mountain of mulch in my driveway has been shrinking over the last couple of days as we weeded, moved plants around and spread the mulch between the plants.  Hopefully, this will cut down on the weeding!  The garden on the right has been mulched but the one on the left was still not mulched.  All of the gardens are done now.  We need to add a stone edging to one last garden as our last big project for this year.


The planters are flourishing!   We have had lots (maybe a bit too much!) rain lately.


I love the purple speckled petunias!  The bubbling rock is up and running.  I like hearing the sound of the water when I am out in the yard.


Tonight, I added the binding to the batik jelly roll quilt I made in April. I had it longarmed by Julie with a dragonfly pantograph.


I have about half of the binding sewn down by hand and hope to finish this one off tomorrow.  There will be a blogpost showing it finished sometime early next week.


This beautiful white peony is growing in our backyard.  The plant was transplanted from my husband's grandmother's garden and has bloomed in spectacular fashion every year in our garden.  I love the hints of pink along the edge of some of the petals.   My husband remembers seeing the bushes laden with flowers at the farm where his grandparents lived.

I will link up with Kathy in the morning.

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Coming Home House Border


My goal for last week was to finish piecing the house borders of my Coming Home quilt...not quite achieved last week, but tonight, I finished off the last border.  I fussy cut the centres of my star blocks and used liberated piecing for the star points.


I like to think the little house above is the town library, or the home of avid readers.


A gardening gnome lives in this green and yellow house.


Here is a picture of all 4 borders around the centre medallion.


Some of the houses will be getting appliquéd windows and doors but I have yet to decide which ones.   The next instructions came out at the end of May so I will be doing quite a bit of applique next--stars and suns, moons, clouds, kites and birds as well as at the doors and windows.  I hope to have some progress to show by Sunday for Slow Sunday Stitching with Kathy.

Saturday, June 8, 2019

This Week's Projects

This week's theme is home. I spent most of my sewing time this week working on houses for the next border of "Coming Home".  You can see that I fussy cut some bunnies for the middle of my liberated star house.  I had paper pieced 24 roofs for the houses a couple of weeks ago in preparation for house construction. 


Here is my first of four rows of houses in process.  The green tape on each house has a number on it to help keep things in the right order.  Doors and windows will be added by hand applique when I get all of the house borders put together.


I have two rows of houses done and the third is just about finished.  I am having fun building the neighbourhood, one house at a time. 


For the last week or so, my husband and I have been spending much of our "spare" time fixing our flagstone paths in the backyard.  This before picture shows how bad they looked...


This involved lifting each stone, digging out all of the soil, weeds and debris around each one and then placing the stones back down again, followed by the addition of stone dust with cement in it in all the cracks between the flagstones.  After sweeping the stone dust into the cracks, we watered it with the hose to get he cement to activate and harden.  This picture shows our progress...


Our goal was to finish off the paths by the end of the day today.  Goal accomplished!


This narrow path goes through our garden and it was today's project.  It was still wet when I took this picture.


We have ordered mulch for all of the gardens and it will be here this week so that is next on the agenda.  In the meantime, there are weeds to pull and tulips and daffodils to cut back before the mulch can be added.   Also, some new plants may have been purchased at the garden centre today so they need to be planted too.

I did some outlining on my Frank Lloyd Wright counted cross stitch window this week in the car on our way to Stratford where we saw Billy Elliott.   The outlining is starting to define the shapes in that lower left corner of the picture.


Finn is enjoying his walks now that the weather is warmer and it is light later in the evenings.


I will be linking up with Kathy in the morning.

Saturday, June 1, 2019

Another Quilt Finished!

This was my goal for this past week--to get this quilt to the finish line.  I quilted it over a few evenings and then did the binding yesterday and today, mostly in the car on the way to visit my MIL. My husband and I also managed to get all of our flower pots and window boxes planted over the last couple of days. There are lots more outside jobs to do yet, and they will get done over the next few weeks: weeding the flagstone path, weeding and mulching the gardens, moving some plants...


I really like the backing fabric that I used for this quilt.


The yellow binding looks good on the front and the back.  You can see my cross-hatch quilting in this picture too.


I used Bonnie Hunter's scrappy trips pattern to make this quilt top at a retreat back in March. It is a gift for someone who does not read my blog.  I don't think she even knows I have a blog.


Finn has been keeping my daughter busy.  Now that the nicer weather is here, he likes to go for more walks and just chill outside.


Then, it is time for a nap!


This Icelandic poppy lives in my front garden. 


Here is my progress on my Frank Lloyd Wright counted cross stitch project for this week.  It will look more coherent when I start to add in the outlining.  Isn't it funny that my quilt finish and my counted cross stitch projects are colour co-ordinated???


I will be linking up with Kathy and the gang in the morning for Slow Sunday Stitching.

Friday, May 31, 2019

Stitching and Knitting in the Gazebo

I knew something was up when the garage door would not open when I got home from work yesterday...  The power was out and Christine was coming over for an evening of sewing.  I called her and let her know the power was out and that she should bring a hand work project as well as her regular sewing projects just in case we could not use the sewing machines.  I cooked my supper on the BBQ and went for a walk.  Still no power.  Christine arrived and we headed out to the gazebo to cross stitch (me) and knit (Christine).


It was a lovely evening...the sun was shining and the birds were singing.  We sat and chatted as we worked on our projects.  Christine has just started to knit a blanket. (It matches the pillows on the chairs in my gazebo!)



My columbines are in flower and these ones are right beside the gazebo.


I have been machine quilting my yellow and blue scrappy trips lap quilt this week and had hoped to machine stitch the binding on last night but since the lights did not come on until 11 pm, that job had to wait until this morning.


This quilt is a gift for someone who does not read my blog.   I used my walking foot to sew a cross hatch quilting design on it with blue thread that matches the border fabric.


I hope to get the hand sewing on the binding done this weekend and will do another blogpost when the quilt is done.

I will link up with Kathy and the Slow Sunday Stitchers on Sunday morning.