Saturday, August 30, 2014

Phase 2

of Winter Solstice has been completed in time to be included in Paulette's monthly post.

This month our 'block' was actually 6 small house blocks and 7 stars.

Here is the original photo from the book.

My barns are on my little design wall along with the new additions.

My 6 little houses....

a row of 3 large stars....

...and a mix of stars that will be sprinkled throughout the quilts.

I goofed on one and made the star the wrong size for the background.  I might just leave it...after all...the sizes don't exactly have any rhyme or reason.  (It's the top center gold star above.)  It would be a quick re-do if I decide it isn't going to work. 

Since I work one block at a time...I don't even know what we're doing next month!  Some trees?  Some sheep? It has to be one or the other. 

Happy stitching.


Friday, August 29, 2014

At last, some framed finishes.

As I made my way through my pile of finished stitching I decided a couple were too large for me to make into anything.

First,  Brownbird Sampler by Bent Creek. 

Anyone remember back to the Crazy January Challenge of 2011?  That year people assembled 15 kits and started one on each of the first 15 days of January?  There is a tab at the top where I list mine.  I should go back and add the appropriate photos.  You my free time and because uploading pictures is so easily accomplished on Blogger. 

Anyhow, this one was kitted up and was one of the ones that went beyond my chosen 15.  I will admit to having another one or two still awaiting their turn.  If I do another January challenge those will have to top the list. was a cute and quick little piece. 

The frame compliments the stitching perfectly.

Next is July Cottage by Country Cottage Needleworks.  I removed the word 'July' in favor of additional fireworks.  I wanted to be able to display it all summer.  For whatever reason I love a pattern with a flower pot.   

My most favorite finish of late is Hares' Christmas by Plum Street Samplers.

Anything that includes three children is an automatic 'must stitch' on my list.

I liked it enough to do a double frame. 

Don't those colors just make this piece complete? 

I am so lucky to have found a framer with an artist's eye. 

Happy Stitching.


Tuesday, August 26, 2014

My newest favorite finish.

Snowman Collector is my latest finish.  I just can't stop looking at it.  Prior to quilting, it looked really flat and two dimensional.  The quilting just added the perfect finishing touch. 

This project languished in my stash for years.  I bought the kit soon after buying my embroidery machine.  For whatever reasons, I never perfected the embroidery feature of the machine and decided not to buy a new machine with embroidery capabilities.  So, before letting mine go, I worked up this one and only kit.

I know pictures just can't capture the overall look but here goes. 

The snowmen are very cute.

I like working with small pieces so the 1 inch squares (using strip piecing) were fun and easy.

I quilted it using the same snow flake patter I used on the last quilt.  

On the back I used a piece from the new line: Snow Happens.  So darn cute.  I bound it with bias cuts of red ticking stripe.  Striped binding cut on the bias is the best! 

Here in upstate NY it won't be long before I can hang this!  I heard that we will see snow in September.  While that might be a wee bit early....October wouldn't surprise any of us.

Happy Stitching.


Friday, August 22, 2014

It's done.

For the last time we've moved a new college freshman into their dorm.  Not that we won't be carrying boxes into and out of a dorm for several years to come...but nothing compares to the very first time.  The flip side is when they head off with a carload and move themselves into a dorm room you've never seen.  We've experienced both this week.

The disorder...

...slowly becomes order.

I didn't see a single room where anyone thought to shuffle the furniture...or raise the bed up.  Some parents saw what we'd done and went off to duplicate it.  I imagine lots of furniture is getting shuffled around once kids start seeing other rooms.

Now, on another note...I have visited MANY dorms.  Whether it's because my kids live there or on a tour...the bathroom tells a whole lot about college life.  I NEVER miss the opportunity to look in the bathroom on a tour.  My husband can tell you some stories...however...I am the mother and I want to see.  Plus, I went to college.  Lived in 4 different dorms and know all about bathrooms...whether shared or en suite.

This university has rooms set up specifically for tours so parents never actually set foot in any of the space a kid lives in.  However, even if I'd seen the bathrooms, those wouldn't have counted because the freshman dorms have been remodeled.  And, let me tell you, they have figured out something that just might be worth all the money we're paying....bathrooms matter. 

Being the 50 year old mother of 3...the first place I needed to visit upon carrying my first load up to the 3rd floor was the bathroom.  OMG!  I hurried out and went to get Buttercup.

Private rooms!  Each has a toilet, sink, paper towel, and a soap dispenser.  

Showers also have a private room.  

 AND....because they are the hall bathrooms....they get cleaned E-V-E-R-Y-D-A-Y!

Back to the real point of the day.....Buttercup is moved in, meeting people, and occasionally sending me a text to help ease the worry.  I also had the fun of running into a mother I knew from my preschool days.  Her daughter and my daughter were in preschool together.  So were our boys.  Yay...a friendly face. 

Stitching....yes....I will stitch and sew my way through this transitional fall.


Wednesday, August 20, 2014

A finish that was not

from my pile of unfinished starts.  Nothing, and I mean NOTHING, is a UFO in my sewing room.  Everything has potential.  Plus, I don't like the word WIP.  It's an accounting term and I'm not applying accounting to anything in my sewing room.  Such a dangerously slippery slope. 

However, I am not here to discuss what is not finished....I am here for this reason....

In from the Cold was a free pattern from the Fat Quarter Shop last year using Kate Spain's In from the Cold line of fabric.  

I loved making each and every one of these blocks.

Some were very simple and some had itty bitty little pieces.

I am pretty good at piecing tiny little things.  These wee pinwheels are too cute.

The quilting is a snowflake pattern.  White on white. 

The backing is using fabric from the same line featuring Christmas cookies.  The perfect compliment to a cup of steaming hot cocoa. 

I am on the program committee at my quilt guild.  We will do this quilt as a scrap busting project this year.  I can't wait to see what people come up with.


Tuesday, August 19, 2014

A week fueled by

Diet Coke, adrenalin and no sleep.  No fooling.

The Boy Wonder is back on campus, the Scholar is almost back in front of the classroom, and the biggy....Buttercup heads to college this week.  My nerves are jangled!  My friend Robin reminded me that a parent's job is to work themselves right out of a job.  So very true.

In the mean time, I've photographed my latest block of the month finish from Quilt Doodle Designs.....
which I've sewn in place between the cups of hot cocoa and the snowman heads.

It is the cutest little row of Christmas candies.  So fun and easy to make.

I had a piece of red and white swirl fabric that worked nicely.

Such a fun block of the month.  We only have 2 more installments.  Can't wait to see what else we will be stitching for this quilt.

Happy Stitching.


Monday, August 18, 2014

Holy bow, Batman!


In real life...I swear that bow is nowhere near as big as it looks in the pictures!

I might have to go look again.

This little ditty was a free pattern but I can't find it!  I have even cleaned and organized my piles and didn't unearth it.  Anyhow...I bought a finishing kit by Mona from the Silver Needle.   This is the best link I could find.  Used to be there were a variety of kits you could they appear to only be associated with their Secret Needle Night kits.  Anyhow, the kit that arrived wasn't the one I ordered so it went into my stash and languished there for years.  One day I decided to stitch the little piece...which I did and promptly didn't like.  The photo wasn't in color...not that I couldn't change it once I got going but I'll do just about anything to not 'unstitch'.  So there is sat until the day I decided I absolutely HAD to start making my way through the pile waiting to be finished.   I love a boxy finish and Mona's kits are so easy to use.  The bow is pre-made.  I even untied it and made it smaller.'s huge.  Maybe it will blend into the background when I place it among my patriotic pieces next summer.

Next up...

A very cute little free pattern from The Snowflower Diaries called Tulips with Chick. (I fixed it...incase you were clicking this link and it didn't work right...)

 Such a cute little chick.

I took a couple pieces to be framed but still have half a dozen (or more) things that I hope to finish myself.  I am planning another boxer (minus the enormous bow) and maybe a couple pin keeps.  We'll see.  Sometimes I go an entirely different direction when I actually sit down to work on something.

Happy stitching.


Sunday, August 10, 2014

I am so far behind

on posts of what I've worked on this summer that it is almost shameful.  Although, not spending time on the computer is NOT shameful.  I've been away for the last 3 weeks and while I read email and my regular blogs, I spent very little time on the computer.  My days are structured differently and I don't even think about the computer....even forgetting to check email like I normally would.

Anyhow, one of the projects I worked on before going away was a quilt to be raffled at church.  It was made by a very accomplished quilter who would normally hand quilt her projects but time is at a premium for something like this.  I don't quilt for anyone but myself so actually working on something for someone else was nerve-wracking!

When she gave me the quilt she expressed concern over the bulky seams at the center of the flowers.

What caught my eye, though, was the folded centers.

Yikes!  How was I going to prevent those from getting caught by the machine's foot and folded over?

I tried a variety of ways to hold the fabric down but the one that worked the best was a bit of freezer paper pressed over the folds.

My test spot worked out so I cut larger pieces and placed them over all the centers.

When I was finished I just tore away the freezer paper. 

The maker of the quilt did not remember the name...sorry...but it sure looks like a fun one to make.  The flower centers are folded so that they pop into place when the flower is pieced. 

I have a whole bunch of tops to quilt so that will be my focus in the coming weeks.  Plus, I'll try to get caught up with the other things I've worked on.  I am making headway in finishing WIPs....although I worked on two new projects while on vacation.