Friday, January 26, 2024

Crumby Stars, Counted Cross Stitch and Mending...

I'm doing really well working on some sort of knitting, stitching or sewing every day in January.  So far, I have only missed one day! I finished piecing my crumby star blocks this week and put all the blocks together.  The blocks are 12" square so at this stage, the quilt top was 36 by 28".  I want it to be a wee bit bigger so I will add 3.5" borders all around using the background material.  I am not sure of what I will use for backing yet...maybe some flannel.  I will be quilting this one myself with my walking foot.  I'm contemplating how I will do this now. 

I finished the 4th of 9 motifs on my counted cross stitch project.  This pattern is from Satsuma Street. I'm loving the colours in this pattern.  I will start working on the next motif this weekend. 

My daughter received a couple of cross stitch kits from her aunt, uncle and cousins at Christmas.  She has made good headway on the first one.  All four kits provide clues to solve a murder mystery.  I see blood dripping from the sink...

Finn likes to supervise while she stitches...

My scarf is now 17" long.  At this rate, I might finish it for next winter...  Do not fear! There is no shortage of scarves in my wardrobe to keep me warm this winter.  

Nothing better than sticking your face into the freshly fallen snow on a sunny day!

I mentioned mending in the title of my post.  I fixed two pairs of pants and shortened another pair.  I don't like to have clothing repairs cluttering up my sewing room so I try to get them out of the way so that I can clutter up the room with fabric instead!  I have a retreat coming up in March and I'm starting to assemble a pile of projects to bring with me to the retreat.  I will link up with Kathy and the slow stitchers on Sunday as well as Angela and the RSC folks on Saturday. Have a great week. 

Saturday, January 20, 2024

Sewing Day with Friends

 Before the pandemic, I used to invite a few friends over for a sewing day several times a year.  Today, three friends came here for a sewing/embroidery/knitting/cross stitch day.  It's fun to sit and chat while we work on our projects.  I made everyone basket block pincushions as a souvenir of our day together.  

I spent some time this past week getting my main sewing project ready.  Last year, one of my Rainbow Scrap Projects was four 6.5" crumb blocks for each of 12 colours. I have been thinking about how I will use these blocks and this week decided to divide them into four sets and make 4 quilts with them.  First up, crumby stars!  I searched though my stash to find potential background fabrics. 

I had not made my dark green and gold crumb blocks yet so those were on the agenda this week too. I actually made four of each but took this picture after making the green and gold star blocks for my current project. 

Then, I cleaned up my solid bins and found some fabrics for the star points on each block. I cut out the pieces for all 12 blocks and I was ready!

By the end of the day, I had sewn 7/12 blocks with only one small slip up along the way. 

What did everyone else work on, you may ask? Christine added binding to a quilt and worked on crumb blocks for a Drunkard's path quilt. 

About mid afternoon, we decided to move to the living room for handwork.  Christine did some cross stitching on a Halloween picture.  

Pat worked on knitting a hat, socks and a pair of mittens as well as some counted cross stitch. 

Elaine worked on some embroidery for a pillow. This will be a long term project. 

During handwork time, I added more rows to my scarf--it is now 15" long. (last week, it was 12" long")

Progress was made on my winter cross stitch as well. I am working on the fourth motif now as well as the purple border stitches. 

It was very cold here this week and the wind was blowing hard, so hard that it coated the gate at the pier in Port Stanley with ice.  After bundling up against the cold, my husband and I went down to take a look.  We took a few pictures and headed back to the car to get out of the wind. We stopped for tea and hot chocolate at a little café on the way home. 

We did not take a seat on this bench!

Finn doesn't like getting his winter gear on but still likes going for a walk outside, even when its cold. 

I will link up with Kathy and the Slow Sunday Stitching group in the morning as well as Frederique and the RSC folks. 

Saturday, January 13, 2024

Progress on Several Fronts

I managed to do some knitting or sewing or cross stitching every day this week!  My Gross Morne scarf is now 1 foot (31 cm) long.  I have decided to include the measurement each time I show it as it is hard to tell from the photo alone if I have made any progress.  I still have a ways to go on this project!  

I made my husband and my daughter pillowcases for Christmas but ran out of time to make one for myself so I did that this week.  The two main fabrics were purchased in the East Coast Quilting Company store in St. John's, Newfoundland.  The berries in the border are called Bake Apples or Cloud Berries.  They grow wild in Newfoundland and are used in jam, sauces and ice cream.  There is only one berry per plant so picking them is labour intensive. They are delicious! The colourful houses represent the jelly bean houses in St. John's.  

I started a new rainbow scrap challenge project...These are cut without a template so each one is a bit different.  I will make four each month using my I spy fabrics and the appropriate background colour from my solid stash. They are 6" squares.  I will make an I Spy baby quilt with the finished blocks. I would like to do another RSC project this year but have not decided on anything yet.  

I made and finished off the facing on my David Owen Hastings class project.  I will be hanging this up in my sewing room.  I would like to try making more of these little quilts inspired by architecture sometime.  This one was inspired by a picture I took at the chapel ruin at Dunnottar Castle in Scotland in 2019. 

I put in a lot of stitches on my Christmas cross stitch this week.  The reindeer in the upper right corner is just about done--the antlers and legs are yet to be done (plus a bit of the lower body). 

While digging around in a bin of UFO's this week, I found this 4.5" basket block that was just begging to be made into a pin cushion.  I used some cute pin fabric on the back.  I made the basket block at least 12 years ago.  There is an extra layer of white fabric under the basket block to keep the crushed walnut shells from making the white fabric look dingy. 

I finally finished piecing the back for my modern sampler quilt--I used only stash fabrics for this one.  I will cut the batting to the right size and take it to the long armer this week. 

Finn keeps my daughter in sight at all times and often has to be touching her.    Here they are, toe to toe!

A wintery blast arrived this week so it is time for boots and a coat.  Finn is not thrilled. 

I will link up with the Rainbow Scrap Challenge, Frederique and Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching.  

Saturday, January 6, 2024

Stitching Everyday!

Kathy, our Slow Sunday Stitching organizer and cheerleader, keeps a journal/calendar where she documents what she sews/knits etc.  each day.  I decided I would track my stitching activities each day this year on a wall calendar which I will keep in my sewing room. So far, I have stitched and/or knitted every day this year!  We will see how this goes.  I don't have a goal of how many days each week I want to stitch--I'm just going to track my activities.  

I added more stitches to my counted cross stitch Christmas project.  This will continue to be my winter stitching. I have actually added more of the purple borders already and will be working on a reindeer next--to the right of the wreath. 

Christine and I got together to sew on Friday and I put my Rainbow Scrap Challenge pineapple log cabin blocks together.  I had to use a lot of pins to keep all of the seams matched up.  The seams are pressed open because each block is foundation pieced on fabric so there are lots of layers.  I'm not sure how I'm going to quilt this yet. 

I added the new binding to my daughter's quilt and noticed that the batting is getting a bit bunchy--this quilt has been washed many times.  My daughter loves how soft it feels and doesn't care about bunchy batting. The new binding is a light blue Kona cotton and should be more durable than the flannel binding that I took off.  It is the same colour as the previous binding.  I got three sides of the hand stitching done in the car when we took Finn and our daughter home after the holidays.  The quilt is at her place and I will finish the hand stitching when I am there in February to visit.  I also repaired a few small holes and covered a larger area of wear on the back of the quilt with a new piece of flannel. 

The moose hat is done and my husband wore it today when we went for a walk.  I like how the crown of the hat swirls into the middle. (This picture was taken before I worked all the yarn ends in). The hat goes well with his navy blue coat as you can see in the second picture. 

I took a zoom class today with Maria Shell on Half Circles and Lines.  Here is my fabric pull for the class.  The dotty fabric is leftover from two RSC quilt backings.  I only have a 5" strip of it left--enough to inspire the colours I chose for this quilt.  Maria showed us how to piece an improv half circle into a block.  I have done lots of quarter circles in Drunkard's Path blocks but never a half circle.  Her tips and tricks made it fairly easy.  I made three blocks during the class.  There are other types of blocks that she showed us in the class so I will be making more to add to this collection.  It will eventually become a quilt.  (I have not trimmed the blocks yet, so, yes, they look a bit wonky.)

I got a new iron for Christmas and it matches one of the fabrics I used today in my class!  My old iron bit the dust in November so I sent a note to Santa requesting a new iron. 

Finn is up to his usual displays of cuteness.  Belly rubs?  Yes please!

Finn is sitting on the quilt I made him for his first Christmas.  He often lies on it while my daughter is working. 

My daughter ordered herself a sweatshirt with a picture of Finn. (short for Findley). She had to send a photo in and then they made the image for the shirt.  She had shirts made for her two cousins with pictures of their two dogs and cat on their shirts.  Very cute!

I will link up with the RSC group and with the Slow Sunday Stitchers.  Happy New Year!