Monday, September 30, 2019

8 More Modern Sampler Blocks

Today was the first day that I did not have to go to work since I retired last Thursday.  I got up at the normal time, got ready, made my lunch, loaded up the car with my sewing machine, a project,  all the rulers, cutting mat, and other equipment I needed and headed out to a sew-in day with the Oxford Quilt Guild.  I just joined this guild last month and today was the first chance I had to sew with everyone.   I chose my Tula Pink Modern 100 Blocks sampler as today's was all in one bag and ready to go.

Over the course of the day, I made 8 more blocks.

Some blocks had a lot of pieces!

I managed to create the 3D effect with different sizes of dots.

You may remember I am using my large collection of black and white prints for this quilt along with three fat quarters of Tula Pink fabric which I purchased at QuiltCon in February.  Some blocks are just black and white but most have a bit of colour in them.

In large quantities, that one black and white fabric does weird things to your eyes!

Such cute little owls!

The end of block construction for this quilt is in sight...I have made 84/100 of the blocks.   Now, I will have to think about how I am going to set them...

Sunday, September 29, 2019


This past Thursday was my last day of work...I retired!  It has not really hit me yet, since I did not work on Fridays anyways, but tomorrow morning, I will not need to rush around to get ready for work.  Instead, I will be spending the day sewing!  

Yesterday, my husband and I went to see a play in Blyth, a small town about 2 hours north of where we live.  You will never guess what I worked on in the car!  Frank Lloyd Wright came along for the drive and many stitches were added.  I added lots of outlining first and was finally able to move the hoop down to work on the lower section on this project. The yellow columns continue down to the bottom of the picture. 

This picture was taken in the car before I moved the hoop down. 

I stitched on the way home until it got too dark to see what I was doing.

On the way to Blyth, we stopped at the Quilt Kitchen in Exeter...I had never been to this shop before but I had seen their fabrics at a booth at the London Modern Quilt Guild show a few weeks ago.  These fat quarters jumped off the shelf and into my hands!  Those squirrels are so cute!

I also bought some yardage--some orange Essex Linen--orange is a neutral in my world!  The other fabric may become a quilt back unless I get inspired to use it in another project before then.

To celebrate my retirement, my friend Pat and I went hiking at a local conservation area near here.  It was a beautiful day on Friday...we hiked for about 90 minutes and then went out for lunch.

This dead tree had interesting fungi growing on it.

Speaking of fungi....

The trees are just starting to hint at changing colour here but there was colour to be found closer to the ground.

I will be back here again soon as the leaves change colour. 

Finn spent some time yesterday watching the squirrels out the window.  

A couple of friends gave me some Quilty retirement gifts.  I can't wait to work on this fun puzzle and get inspiration from Kaffe's quilts in Italy!

I will be linking up with Kathy and the Slow Sunday Stitchers.  Take a peak at what everyone is making.  

Sunday, September 22, 2019

FLW and a New Cityscape

If you paid close attention to last week's FLW picture, today, you might notice that I have added some backstitch lines to my project. I hope to add enough outlining today to move the hoop down so I can continue the yellow columns of cross stitching. Truth be told, I find the straight lines of backstitching a bit boring...but they do add interest to the picture, so I will soldier on!

My daughter started another cityscape, and, once again, she will not tell me what city she is stitching.  Any guesses?

I spent the last two days at a "Designing with Line" workshop with Jacquie Gering.  I can't wait to get into my sewing room to play with lines some more.  I have lots of ideas to explore!  I will be doing a post about the workshop sometime in the next few days so check back for more pictures and thoughts about the workshop.

Finn and my daughter went for a walk at the dog park yesterday and Finn had a lot of FUN!  I love how his ears flop around when he runs!

I have an exciting week coming up.  I will be retiring on Thursday!  I am looking forward to more time for creative pursuits--sewing, cross stitch, embroidery...and I want to learn to knit.  I also have lots of jobs around my house that I need to tackle, and I have a growing pile of books to read as well. I don't think there is any chance of boredom any time soon!

This picture was taken at the St. Thomas Elevated Park--the first elevated park in Canada.  The official grand opening was last weekend.  My husband and I went for a walk there on Thursday evening at sunset so I could take some pictures.

I will be linking up with Kathy and the Slow Sunday Stitchers.  Make yourself a cup of coffee or tea and take a look at what everyone is up to this week. 

Saturday, September 14, 2019

Embroidery, Cross Stitch and a Quilt Show

This past week, I have worked on a number of hand and machine stitching projects, including shortening of two pairs of dress pants for a family member, making of two blocks (including embroidery) for the London Modern Quilt Guild QuiltCon 2020 charity quilt, and prepping a demonstration of curved piecing on Drunkard's Path blocks for today's Modern Guild Meeting.  The one project which did not get any stitches this week was my Frank Lloyd Wright counted cross stitch, but I am including a picture of its current status as an incentive to myself to get back to work on this one this week. Most of the cross stitching is done--lots of outlining still to go. 

I made two letter blocks for the LMQG charity quilt:  A and T.  QuiltCon 2020 will be in Texas and the organizing committee has chosen colours (black, white and various shades of grey) and a theme (Text) for this year's charity quilts.  Many guilds from around the world each make a quilt and then they will all be on display at the show.

The embroidery on the T block is all backstitch with three strands of floss. I used a lazy daisy stitch to make each of the leaves on the tree of the A block. 

Many guild members are involved in making blocks for this project.  The blocks will be assembled at our next meeting in October.  It was fun to see all of the blocks as they were handed in today at the beginning of the meeting.

Last weekend was our first ever quilt show at Grosvenor Lodge in London, Ontario.  Our colour challenge quilts were displayed around the porch on three sides of the building.

My quilt is the one on the right in the picture below.

I had three other quilts in the show...

Gail's Garden - started at a stitch and flip class with Jacquie Gering a few years ago and just finished recently for the show. 

Top:  Scrappy Appliqué Squirrel - made at a class with Shannon Brinkley. 
Bottom: My version of a pattern by Jen Kingswell. 

When I got home from the show, look who arrived for a visit!  Finn and my daughter!  They have gone home now but we had lots of fun playing with Finn and going for a long walk every day they were here.  

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

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Gifts for My Family

A few months before our trip to Scotland and England, I decided to make several Quilty gifts for my family member that we would be visiting on our trip.  This Christmas star table topper was given to my cousin and his wife.  I used a Jaybird quilts pattern to make it. 

The backing is Christmas fabric I had in my stash. 

I made 6 wide open zippered pouches for various cousins as well. All of the fabrics were in my stash---obviously, I have too much fabric...

Canada themed pillowcases were given to my uncle and some other cousins. I bought these fabrics especially for these gifts.

I'm told that these went onto the pillows right away when they got home!

My cousin, Alison, loves to drink tea so her pillowcase was made with teacup fabric which I found in my stash.

I also brought along 5 lap/baby quilts as gifts...The first one was for my aunt who loves the colour purple.  

My step grandmother was given the scrappy trips lap quilt that I made earlier this year, just for her. It reminded me of her pretty garden.

My cousin and her husband were the recipients of my batik triangle quilt.

There were also two baby quilts--one for a recently born baby boy and one for a baby which will be arriving early in the new year.

You may wonder how I fit all these gifts into the suitcase...

We purchased vacuum bags and put all the quilts and pillow cases and zipper bags inside.  Once we sucked the air out with the vacuum cleaner, the bags were much smaller and fit quite nicely inside the suitcase.  We just had to watch the weight of the suitcases for the plane, but that worked out fine.

When we were in Inverness, we went out for supper and then decided on ice cream for dessert.  We looked on the internet for an ice cream shop within walking distance and found this one a few blocks away...  You will never guess what was next door!

A quilt shop with lovely quilts in the window.

I hoped that they would have some of this Scottish themed fabric in stock for me to buy!

The shop was closed but plans were quickly made to visit the shop when it opened in the morning. Across the road, we saw this shop...

Laskey's book shop is a famous used book store which is in an old church.  My husband loves to read so he headed here while I went to the quilt store.

The sun had just set as we headed back to our bed and breakfast inn.

There may have been some stash enhancement at the quilt store....