Saturday, February 26, 2022

This Week's Sewing Adventures

It's been a busy week in the sewing room at my house!  The log blocks really did nothing to enhance my Oxford Quilter's Guild VP day challenge quilt so I removed them and made a few more HST's. I rearranged the HST's to my liking and then started sewing the rows together.  Most of the rows are sewn and the top two are sewn to each other.  I will likely finish this top this week. I love the Shweshwe fabrics I have used for this project!

I finished the embroidery on my Lupine quilt label this week and now just have to piece the back and get it off to the long arm quilter's house.  I like to have my label quilted into the quilt--it won't fall off that way!

On Wednesday, I attended a Traditional Variations class with Cheryl Arkison on Zoom.  We made variations of four different traditional blocks.  Cheryl encouraged us to play and have fun trying new things.  I decided ahead of time to use some batik fabrics that were in my stash, picking out some red, orange, green and blue pieces.  I will be using my blocks to make a Quilt for a Residential School survivor--a project that has been taken on by members of the Toronto Modern Guild.  

I made a 6" church dash block in the traditional way and then made a 12" block with "curved triangles" in the corners. 

My 6" pinwheel was made in the traditional way and the bigger block was made with half rectangle triangles.

I also made one liberated wonky star block and a couple of log cabin variations.  I used the leftover curved  bits from the churn dash to make a curved pinwheel block.  I still have lots of ideas and fabric left so more blocks will be put together over the next while until I have enough for a lap sized quilt.  I decided to stick with 6" and 12" blocks so it goes together easily.  

I finished hand stitching the binding on this quilt--the top was made by Maureen H. and she gave it to me to donate to a worthy cause.  Julie from the Elgin Piecemakers quilted it and it will go to the local women's shelter.  

When I showed all of my comfort quilt blocks a couple of weeks ago, someone asked me to show all the blocks that were made by members of the Elgin Piecemakers for each month.  Here are all the red and gray blocks for February.  One of our members will make a quilt top with sashing and cornerstones, and then one of our long armers will quilt it.  Another member will do the binding and then it will be ready to donate. 

Finn took my daughter's mitten outside this week while he did his business and then brought it back inside when he was done.  Silly boy!

I wound a ball of wool earlier today during a zoom meeting.  I am going to make myself a hat!  I have made hats for many others but have never made one for myself.  I hope to start knitting tomorrow for my Slow Sunday Stitching project.  I will link up with Kathy in the morning. 

Until next time, enjoy your stitching!

Saturday, February 19, 2022

Embroidery, Binding and What's on my Design Wall

For my slow stitching this week, I spent some time working on my embroidered quilt label for my Lupine quilt.  I removed the blue pen marks from the parts that I have done already.  I had to do some unstitching when I used only two strands of floss instead of three when I started stitching the black letters this week.  Oops!  I must say it is harder to unstitch embroidery than machine stitching!

I added the binding to another comfort quilt this week and started hand stitching it on the back.  This is a biggish square quilt so I anticipate another day or two of stitching to get it done.  The top was made by my friend Maureen and it will be donated to the Women's Shelter. I will show a picture of the top when I have the binding done. The spool holder was made by my friend Carol's Dad.  A tree branch fell down in his yard and he made lots of these which Carol gave to all her quilting friends. There is a magnet under my metal needle minder. The backing was donated by another Elgin Piecemakers Guild member who was purging it from her stash.  Julie from the Elgin Piecemakers did the quilting. 

Today was our Guild Sewing Day for the Oxford Guild.  The Vice President's challenge was the project...I used my Shweshwe fat quarters and newly acquired background fabric for my quilt top. I made lots of HST's this week to prepare for today.  Here are samples of my HST's. 

We were to make some irregular rail fence blocks as well to incorporate into our quilts.  I made a dozen and put everything on my design wall today.   I am going to tweak where things are over the next few days until I am happy with it. I am not sure I want the rail fence blocks in there.  I will consider some other  ideas before I sew the blocks together.  If you want to weigh in with your opinions, please feel free to do so in the comments!

I will continue to sew my binding and work on my embroidery tomorrow for my Slow Sunday Stitching tomorrow.  I will link with Kathy's blog in the morning. 

I made some raspberry scones this week.  Here is a link to the recipe.  I froze some raspberries and blueberries last summer--my husband is not a big blueberry fan so I substituted raspberries for blueberries.  Just make sure the berries are thawed before you add them to your mixing bowl.  I have made these with blueberries as well---I think they are delicious both ways!

Finn continues to keep us all entertained.  Note that he has a treat on each foot in this picture and has to wait until I say ok (on FaceTime) to eat them. 

Have a good week!

Saturday, February 12, 2022

Prepping for Guild Sewing Day and some Hand stitching.

I'm not one of those quilters who cuts everything out before starting to sew a quilt.  I like to cut a little, sew a little, press a little and then repeat until I have enough blocks. This week, I started getting ready for the Vice President's Challenge day at the Oxford Quilters Guild next Saturday.  This event, usually in person, will be on Zoom again this year.  I needed several fat quarters and some yardage for background for this project.  We are to prepare a whole bunch of HST's before the sewing day.  I am using some Shweshwe fabrics for my project. These fabrics are produced in South Africa but are distributed in Canada by Meerkat Trading. I purchased my FQ's years ago when Céleste spoke at the London Friendship Guild and I'm happy to have found a place to use them.  I still have more cutting, sewing and pressing to do!

 I finished binding the comfort quilt I showed last week on my blog.  I used cut offs from the backing for the binding but was a little bit short so I added in a piece of red to make the binding go all the way around the quilt.  You can see that I used the three extra blocks on the back to stretch the backing fabric to fit the quilt. 

Sorry about the weird angle for the picture of the quilt holder was not home!

A group of friends are participating in our own little UFO challenge for 2022.  My February UFO is my Lupine quilt.  I need to finished piecing the quilt, embroider the label, piece the backing and take it to the long arm quilters. The top is finished now, thanks to a Zoom sewing day with Carol on Thursday.  I have no place big enough to lay out the entire top so here is a peek. 

At the online QuiltCon Together 2021, I took a class on embroidering quilt labels.  I started to make a label for this quilt during the class and then promptly put it away.  I went searching today and found the label and got busy adding more embroidery.  It's not done yet, but I will work on it this week and hopefully get the backing for my lupin quilt put together once I have finished the embroidery.  This is my slow stitching project for this week. 

My husband and I celebrated my birthday this week with a hike in the woods at a local wildlife management area. 

While our daughter was watching olympic curling this week, Finn did his best impression of a curling rock. Yes--that's my daughter's mitten in Finn's bed...he likes to play with them, but he doesn't chew them. 

My husband and I have been working on this puzzle for a few weeks now and we finally finished putting it together this week.  You can see why I chose it.  Before you ask, NO, I will not be making a quilt like this!  The puzzle was challenging but fun to make. 

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

Saturday, February 5, 2022

Blocks, Blocks and More Blocks

 I dug into my scrap bins this week to made my Rainbow Scrap Challenge blocks for February in Turquoise. I am working on three RSC projects for this year.  The first one is a 36 patch. 

Next, I pulled out my selvages and foundation pieced these squares on lightweight non-fusible interfacing.   Then, I cut them in half.  I am still not sure if these will become flying geese or HST's. 

Time to dig into my turquoise bits and pieces to make a Drunkard's path block. The four quarter circle units are not sewn to each other yet.  I am not sure how I will lay these ones out in the final project and don't want to commit too soon. I will link up with Angela and the RSC group

Last week, the Elgin Piecemakers guild met on Zoom and we determined the colours for our comfort quilts for the rest of the year.  Our group has 18 members and we each make one block in the colours for each month.  We make sampler quilts from the blocks each month so each block is different. I usually make all my blocks at once so I am ready for the year. I have now made all nine blocks!

February:  red and gray

March: light gray, yellow and bright blue

April: black, rust and cream

May: Black, white and lime green

June: purple and yellow

September:  two blocks--1. Green, rust and gold.  2. fall colours

October: Gray, yellow and white.  I decided to try my version of a disappearing churn dash block.  The way the middle fabric ended up swirling in a circle in the final block was pure luck--not planned, but it looks neat!

November: blue, yellow and white

Here are all nine blocks on my design wall.  Yellow was a popular colour choice this year!

I finished off my last spool of white thread this week and opened up my cone of Auriful 50wt white.  I wonder how long it will last?

The long arm quilter that lives around the corner finished quilting this red, gray and white comfort quilt earlier this week.  I trimmed it and made the binding today and will be working on sewing it on by machine and by hand this week for my slow stitching.  The blocks for this quilt were made by members of  the Elgin Piecemakers and several other quilting friends to make a comfort quilt for a refugee that never arrived.  I found the finished top when cleaning up a pile of fabric and decided it needed to get finished and given to someone.  I'm glad it is close to the finish line and will soon be helping to keep someone warm. 

This year, once a month, I am going to do a stash report. For January, I used 12.3 yards of fabric.  I purchased 2.7 yards of fabric for an upcoming guild challenge.  Stash reduction is underway!

Finn comes running when he hears the FaceTime jingle.  He knows that we usually say he can have a treat when we call.  He sometimes is a bit of a screen hog on the calls!

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