Saturday, April 22, 2017

Slow Stitching

On Saturday, Karen and I went to the Embroiderer's Guild show in London (Canada).  We all sorts of wonderful hand stitching projects including cards, book covers, fidget blankets, ornaments, knitting, tatting, and wall art.  I was ready to grab my phone and take some pictures when I saw the sign...No Photograhs.  You will just have to take my word for it...the show was inspiring!  

I did some more sewing in the car this week.  


I finished two more plus signs.  



I'm also making 140 4" square bean bags for a weighted blanket.  Each one is hand sewn shut after I add the plastic beads.  I have 40 completely done...only 100 more to go.  


More flowers blooming this week...




I will be linking up with Kathy and the other slow Stitchers in the morning.  

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Cardinal Surgery

I finally got around to making my Cardinal block for the Holly Jolly Christmas sew along at Sew Fresh Quilts.  I cut it out one night...

There are lots of pieces!  I sewed it together yesterday.


It wasn't until I took this picture that I noticed a mistake...I had wondered why there was a leftover piece when I was done...

I used my best friend to help me perform the surgery... And then stitched the extra piece in where it was supposed to be. 


A little pressing, and the Cardinal was looking much better!


He has joined the other blocks on my design wall.  


I did sine EPP this week as well, finishing three more plus signs. 


The pile is getting higher.


I hope to make a few more this week. 

I took a few pictures in my backyard tonight.  I have interesting plants growing between my patio stones.




My pasqueflower is almost blooming too. 

Happy Easter!  

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Quilt in a Day

My MIL asked me to make a quilt for a friend's new baby girl.  I was in the mood for sewing on Friday afternoon so I got to work.  The pattern for this quilt is from Diary of a Quilter.  I have had this fabric in my stash for a few years and decided it was time to use it in a quilt.  


After sewing the star together, I added a border...


I used only fabrics from my stash for this quilt.  I had enough white for the background and enough of this print for the backing. 


I pin basted the quilt before supper on my kitchen floor.  After supper, I did the quilting with my walking foot using a zig zag stitch and yellow Aurifil thread. 


I quilted diagonally through the star and then in "V"s in the triangles on the sides.  The middle of the star has a funky cross hatch design. 



I looked in my solids to find some fabric for the binding.  Again, I did not want to do any shopping for this quilt so the binding is turquoise...I did not have enough of the right colour of green or red.  




I hand stitched the binding today, so technically, the quilt was completed in a little over 24 hours.  My favourite quilt holder did the honours for a picture on the front porch. 


I just need to add a label and it will be ready for gifting!  

I hand sewed the binding on another quilt this week as well...this is a comfort quilt for the London Friendship Quilter's Guild.  Other members of the committee put the top together and did the quilting.  I had a long ride in the car earlier this week so the hand stitching got done as we rode along. 



I worked on a couple of plus signs as well.  One is not quite finished.  I hope to make a few more tomorrow for slow Sunday stitching. I will be linking up to Kathy's blog in the morning. 

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

On the 1st Day of Christmas...

...My true love gave to me...


...a Partridge in a Pear tree!  

This is the latest block in Lorna's Sew Fresh Quilts Christmas Quilt Along.  Christine was over to sew last night so I worked on this block.  It took quilts a while to cut out all the pieces and I did not finish sewing the block until tonight,  

Here is my collection of six blocks so far.  


Even though I am sewing a Christmas quilt inside, my crocuses are blooming outside!


The daffodils are in bud.   Spring is here!  




Saturday, March 25, 2017

The Textile Museum and Slow Stitching

Last weekend, my husband and I spent the weekend in Toronto.  We connected with friends and family, went to Canada Blooms, cheered on the Toronto Raptors at a basketball game and went to see the current exhibit at the Textile Museum of Canada. We arrived just in time for a guided tour of "Kind words can never die: A Personal Collection of Victorian Needlework".


The exhibit included several of the 173 needlework mottos that Jane Webster collected in her lifetime while living in Nova Scotia.  I had seen pieces like these but had not looked at them closely before.  



These pieces were popular "Slow Stitching" projects for women and girls in the mid to late 1800's.  The kits were available from catalogues and included the wool thread, a perforated cardboard rectangle with the pattern printed on it and the frame. Some included a silver foil that could be put on the back after the piece was finished. 

I thought this one was interesting...  There was also one with the same sentiment about "Mother" as well.  


Several included Bible verses, song titles and mottos.  Most were completed with variegated thread and several had a lot of fading from being displayed in bright, sunny rooms.  


The Textile Museum is small and can only display some of their collection at any one time.  I would recommend that you stop in if you are in Toronto.  It was interesting to see what past generations of Slow Stitchers did with a needle and thread. 

I managed to make a couple more plus signs this week too.


I also hand sewed a button this week and have three pairs of pants to hem ---not my favourite type of slow stitching, but necessary. 

I will be linking up with Kathy tomorrow for our weekly hand stitching sew-in.  Take care! 

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Canada Pillow Challenge

In the fall, each member of the Elgin Piecemakers was given a 10" square of fabric and a pillow form for a 20 by 20" pillow.  We were challenged to make a pillow using all of the fabric we were given along with whatever other fabric we wanted to add to our project.  The pillows were to be done by our March meeting, which took place tonight.  I actually finished my pillow a week ahead of the deadline!


I decided to make a simple pieced leaf and spend my time matchstick quilting it with the word "Canada" left unquilted across the middle of the pillow.  I used freezer paper letters which were traced from a printout from my computer.  


I added a few lines of red thread but ended up taking them out and just using beige thread for all of the quilting.  I was really pleased with how well things were coming along as I quilted my pillow over several evenings.  It takes a long time and a lot of thread to do matchstick quilting.  


I started with following the edge of my walking foot for each row of stitching and then dividing each interval in half two more times.  When I took the paper off after I had finished all the quilting, I realized that I could not see the letters on the printed fabric.  Ugh!  Lesson learned!  The C shows up at the beginning and the "a" at the end... I think that I will only do this on solid fabric from now on.  


All of us wore red and white to the meeting to celebrate Canada's 150th birthday.


We had a Canada quiz while our guest judges picked their favourite pillows.  There were Canada themed snacks including bacon with chocolate drizzled on it, butter tarts, Canadian cheddar cheese and cookies shaped like maple leaves.   Everyone was given a jar of maple syrup to take home at the end of the evening, 






The winners of the judges and viewer's choice awards were given gift certificates from Cherished Pieces in Tillsonburg.  

Here is a picture of all of us with our pillows.


We each wrote a short note about the symbolism of the fabrics and patterns depicted in our pillows.  

Of course, we all brought in our yellow, gray and white blocks for this month's comfort quilt as well.  



It was a fun meeting!  Thanks to Joanne and Julie for organizing the challenge and tonight's gathering!  



Saturday, March 18, 2017

Christmas Candles and some New Fabric!

I'm happy to report that I finished one of my secret projects this week!  Unfortunately, I can't share any pictures of it until after my Elgin Piecemakers meeting later this week.  It is the project for our annual challenge and I am glad to have it done a week ahead of time!

Yesterday, a friend and I went for a drive and we ended up at the Marsh Store (there is a link to their website in my sidebar).  I came home with these...


I was offered a shopping basket as I was browsing but declined...I decided to buy what I could hold in one hand.  My red stash was looking very depleted so those reds are a welcome addition.  

I received a squishy in the mail this week from Kathy.  She sent me some wonderful black and white scraps for my EPP plus signs!  These will add more variety to my plus sign project and have been added to my EPP bag. Thanks, Kathy! 



There will be some car sewing this weekend so I should be able to get some more plus signs done for my slow Sunday Stitching. 

Last weekend, Lorna at Sew Fresh Quilts released another block pattern for her Christmas quilt-along. I made the candle block last night.



Here are the five blocks I have made so far:



We had a lot of cold snowy weather this past week but there is some hope that Spring will soon be here...I saw my first Robin this week!  Sorry this is not the clearest picture!  He was joined by a bright red Cardinal in the bush over the fence.