Saturday, November 26, 2016

Wooly Sheep

I took an all day train trip this past week to visit my daughter.  I spent some time earlier in the week prepping my sheep wall hanging, hand basting all the pieces to the background so they would not get lost on the train.  The heads and ears will be added after I get the stitching done on the bodies. 

I chose embroidery thread colours to use for the blanket stitch around each shape.

I put everything I needed for this project into a zippered pouch that I won years ago on another bloggers give-away.

The glasses are very important!

The black thread is for some minor repairs on a pair of my daughter's pants (the hem is coming down.) and to sew some buttons back onto her good coat.  In our family, the sewing gene seems to skip a generation.  My grandmother was a tailor and my step grandmother was a quilter.  I pushed my mother to take sewing classes so she would buy a sewing machine that I could use.  My daughter is not at all interested in sewing but she does like the quilts I make for her.  :-)

All ready to sew on the train. 

There will be more sewing on the way home.  The ticket person on the train told me that they always have a few sewers and knitters on the train.  Too bad we did not get to all sit together!  

I am linking up with Kathy. 

Monday, November 21, 2016

Comfort Quilt Block and a Baby Gift

The Elgin Piecemakers will be meeting later this week.  I am ahead of the game and have my 30's print block for this month's comfort quilt made already.

I'm looking forward to seeing everyone else's blocks!

A friend had a baby girl in September and I had a chance to go and visit and meet baby A a couple of weeks ago.  I made her a cloth book....chewable and washable!  

I quilted it with organic wavy lines. 

I have a few book panels in my stash ready to make baby gifts.  It is always good to be prepared! 

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Santa and some Slow Stitching

Christine and I got up very early yesterday morning to set up our table at the farmers' market to sell our quilted pillows.  We had a special visitor to our table:

Here is Christine:

It was cold and damp but at least we had a roof over our heads!  Here are my pillows...

I would like to be able to say that we sold out, but that would not be true. We each sold some of what we brought...we wish more people had purchased rather than just admiring the pillows, and moving on. We were both glad when the morning was over and we could pack up and go home for something warm to eat and drink.  

Today, I will be working on my wool Applique for slow Sunday stitching while enjoying a cup of tea.  I had to un-sew a few stitches this week because I forgot that the legs of the sheep needed to go on before the bodies!  I will try to pay closer attention from now on so that does not happen again!   

On Friday, it was warm and coats required.  Today, this is what is happening outside my window...

I'm going to go and make that tea now. 

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Christmas Pillows

The town near where I live has a great farmers' market every Saturday morning from 8am to noon which starts up in May on Mother's Day weekend and ends on the last weekend of October. We look forward to our weekly trip to the market. My husband gets a cup of coffee and we visit all the vendors to pick out the groceries we need to the week. Mid summer brings the chance to try all kinds of unusual foods which we can't always find at the grocery store...purple cauliflower, several types of zucchini, a rainbow of peppers, carrots, beets....the list goes on. It is a great place to see the people we know, visit a while, and support local farmers and businesses.

This Saturday is the annual Christmas market...many of the usual vendors will be there along with others selling locally made crafts and gift items.  A couple of months ago, Christine and I decided to rent a table at the market and sell quilted pillows.  I have been busy making Christmas pillows and Christine is making Canada flag pillows to celebrate Canada's 150th birthday next summer.  

First, I made some snowman pillows. Each pillow is unique and all were designed by me. I did not use any patterns to make the pillows. 

Next, I made some Christmas trees in three different colour, light green and medium green.  

I also made some rectangular tree pillows. 

I quilted some with organic wavy lines, some with straight lines and some with a fancy stitch on my sewing machine.  It was fun playing with different colours of threads and quilting designs! 

This week, I made some wonky star pillows.  I like the way the brightly coloured stars look on the dark linen fabric.  I made a couple of star pillows with a lighter coloured fabric as well.  

 The background fabric on all my pillows is Essex linen and they have a zipper closure on the backs so that the covers can be easily removed and washed if necessary. This also makes it easy to change the covers seasonally. All the raw edges inside the pillows are finished with a zigzag stitch.  

Here is one of Christine's pillows.  

  The Horton Farmers' Market is located between Horton and Manitoba Streets, half a block north of Talbot Street in St. Thomas, Ontario, Canada. The Christmas Market is open officially from 8am to noon but I have been told that shoppers arrive as early as 7:30am.  We hope to see some of you who live in the area at the market this Saturday...please stop by and say hello.  I will be wearing a Santa hat...

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

It's an Elephant Parade!

I attended a workshop taught by Lorna from Sew Fresh Quilts last week.  Lorna designs wonderful quilts, mostly with cute and whimsical animals on them.  She was the speaker at our London Friendship Quilter's guild meeting last week and brought along lots of quilts to show us.  She admitted to being a bit obsessed with quilting... (I don't know anyone else with this type of obsession...LOL!)

My favourite animal in this one is the squirrel! 

More squirrels...

How about some cute puppies?

This one is called Elephant parade and it is the pattern I chose to work on during the workshop.

I chose a yellow fabric with polka dots as my background.  These are my bluebirds of happiness...they were supposed to have tails that matched their bodies, but I used creative licence and left them as is.

The turtle was fun to make...I have used the dotty fabric in his shell in several quilts and still have some left for another quilt.  

I am using black and white prints for my elephants.  All of the fabrics were from my stash.  The bicycle elephant is my favourite.

This one is a cut-up....

Circles are fun! 

Here is one facing the other way.  I made 6 elephants, three facing right and three facing left.  I will use the extra one for a label on the back of the quilt. 

I managed to get quite a bit done during the workshop. 

Christine was there too and is also making the elephant quilt. She picked a turquoise background and gray prints for her elephants.  

Lorna spent time with everyone in the room and by the end of the day, it was a real zoo with all the different animals being made!  I went home and made three baby elephants and a frog.  I have put this project aside for now as I have another one with a deadline that needs to be met.  You will find me in my sewing room this week...

There is only one baby in this picture and my frog and turtle still need eyes.  

Back to the sewing room now...

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Slow Sunday Applique

One evening this past week, I spent a couple of hours tracing and cutting out the pieces for a wool Applique project which will be a Christmas gift for a family member.

There are a lot of little pieces in this project!

I am keeping all of them in a ziplock bag for safe keeping! 

Today, I am staring to sew the sheep bodies in place. 

I don't like having the pins in place while I am doing blanket stitch Applique, so I hand baste each piece down first using matching thread.  

I have vast quantities of embroidery thread in many colours and found a gray to match the large sheep.

I had to watch a YouTube video about how to start my first stitch...I have not done this for a while! 

I am off to the races now... We will be doing some garden clean-up today and I hope to do some sewing later today.  I will be linking up with Kathy for Slow Sunday Stitching. 

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Placemats and Some Squishy Mail

Each year at this time, the members of the London Friendship Quilters Guild make placemats for Meals  on Wheels clients.  The placemats are added to gift bags which are delivered on Christmas Day along with Christmas dinner.  I made three placemats this year using a charm pack and some co-ordinating fabric from my stash.  

Here are the backs...

I even found some striped fabrics to use for the binding.

I tried to make the placemats so that they could be used all year long rather than just at Christmas.

I got home today and found a parcel by my front door.  It was my swap blocks from the broken dishes swap that was co-ordinated by Fun with Barb. (There is a link to her blog in the sidebar.)

It will be fun to get these up on my design wall and figure out how to set them!  That will have to wait until after my Christmas sewing is done. Christine's civil war blocks arrived in the same package but you will have to check her blog later to see her blocks.  (Quilting at Balmoral)

Take care!