Saturday, April 30, 2011

Too close for comfort...

OK...I have to get my act together next month, cause this is way too close for comfort. I know me....and I know what happens...I get behind a month, then 1 month turns into 2, then 2 to know  how it thing, I'm trying to finish the backlog of projects in December cause I procrastinated from May til November. I promised myself I would stay on track. So far so good...finished Little Miss Shabby's BOM for April but not til the very end of the month. I love this little block. The series is suppose to be embroidery, but I'm no good at that so I opted to change the design a little and applique instead. I'm really happy with it so far, but each month seems to get a little more challenging to switch to applique as her embroidery design is getting more detailed as well.  

Friday, April 29, 2011

Just under the wire...

Well I've managed to finish Henrietta Whiskers BOM for April, just under the wire. In my quest to try and keep my projects up to date, I carved out an afternoon this week to catch up. Not that I'm behind, but I was starting to see the pile get stacked higher and higher. My goal is to stay on track with all the BOM's that I signed up for this year, and so far so good....but it was really tight. See it's almost the end of the month and it's just gotten finished. I love this free BOM from Bunny Hill Designs. Great designs, great fun to put together and should be a great keepsake once all complete.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

April Showers bring May flowers

And I hope that they do cause it's done nothing but rain for the last month. I see things starting to green up, but long for the flowers of summer to be here. This is April's BOM for my Sun Bonnet Sue Quilt. All the blocks, January thru December are embroidered on 8X8 dotted swiss fabric. I have lovely Sun Bonnet Sue fabric for the sashing picked out and a great vintage print in yellow for the outside border. These take about 30 minutes each to do on the embroidery machine but it's time well spent, cause I love them. It all will look so vintage when it's finished. So glad I managed to get April's done in April...I obviously need to start these monthly BOM's earlier in the month to ensure I get them done on time.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Good things come in 3's

These turned out really nice. I love my Stampin Up Card classes. I always come home with the most beautiful cards thanks to Cindy. We meet once a month and make 2 or 3 projects using the latest techniques and stamps. These 3 are my favorite so far. The Mother card came in handy this month as my mom celebrated her 85th birthday.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

You have to love the spirit of women who find the strength at such a difficult time to support, love and give hope to their friends who face the challenge of breast cancer. I am always touched when I'm asked to quilt a friendship quilt of hope for a customer. To read the sentiments of hope and love they give to their friends in need is so inspirational. I have a family of quilters, who bring me their works of art to long arm (Barb, Deb and Leigh)...Grandmother, Daughter and Granddaughter. Their own lives have been challenged with cancer and now Leigh's friend Michelle is facing breast cancer head on.  Leigh and her family, made this wonderful support quilt for Michelle and had friends write their special messages onto hearts that were appliqued onto the quilt. I know Michelle will read each message and find strength in her battle through their thoughts and wishes.   

Monday, April 25, 2011

Better than Chocolate

I haven't done home baking in so long. Easter seemed the perfect time to make sugar cookie cutouts. They happen to be my son in law's favorite.
They turned out quite nice and I love the sprinkles in the Easter color shades. Couldn't resist adding a fluffy tail to finish them off just perfectly. They are always a hit, whether it's at Christmas or Halloween. There is never a bad time for sugar cookies is there?....and even better than chocolate. Here's the no fail recipe.
1 1/2 cups butter, softened
2 cups white sugar
4 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
5 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Stir in the flour, baking powder, and salt. Cover, and chill dough for at least one hour (or overnight).
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F . Roll out dough on floured surface 1/4 to 1/2 inch thick. Cut into shapes with any cookie cutter. Place cookies 1 inch apart on ungreased cookie sheets. Bake 6 to 8 minutes in preheated oven. Cool completely.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter Egg Hunt

I recently decided to switch up my outside decor for the Easter holidays as local nurseries had some wonderful Pansie arrangements available. I should have taken down the winter evergreen arrangements from the hanging baskets long before now, but procrastinated as usual. With my new Pansie planters in hand I proceeded to take down the hanging basket at the front porch. Nearly gave me a heart attack as I moved it because a morning dove had taken up nest in it and let's just say she was less than impressed when I disturbed her. Once she got her ass out  feathers less ruffled, I was able to take the arrangement down to find a little nest with one small egg in it. I felt horrible, but decided to take out the evergreens and put my Pansie pot in place anyway. I was worried about the fact that I had heard if humans touch a nest the mother won't come back to it as she smells the scent of people. I carefully took out the nest, put in the flowers and gently replaced the nest, egg intact. A few days later I thought I would have a look to see how things were going and low and behold there were now two eggs. Guess that thing about the human touch is a myth. I'll keep you posted as these little guys develop over the next few weeks. Should be fun to watch as I have a " bird's eye view".

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Funny Bunny...what's wrong with this picture?

What's wrong with this picture?
Don't you just love Mr. and Mrs. Rabbit. I fell in love with these two a few years ago and bought them on the spot. I proudly put them out every Easter cause...well....they are just so darn cute. Trouble is when you have boys living at home....shit happens  it's wonderful, however sometimes accidents happen. Boy's are boys. These bunnies sit at the front door on a table and I guess that one of the boys accidentally flew  came in and knocked Mr. Bunny off the table cracking his ears off. Rather than have me lose my shit get upset, when I got home from work, my darling hubby took the initiative and glued the ears back on. When I got home, no one said anything about the mishap and I was non the wiser. A couple of days later, my daughter was over to visit and as soon as she came in she said...Mom, what the heck is up with this rabbit, his ears are on backwards.  With all the hoop-law that ensued, dear hubby confessed what happened and that he was trying to help by fixing it.  After 30 years of marriage I do know that my dear hubby is not a "stickler for details" kind of person, but come on.....the ears are on backwards!  
I've left them as is, cause it's just too funny.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Happy Easter

Happy Easter everyone.
I hope you have a wonderful holiday with family and friends. This little goodie holder is so sweet and so easy to make using supplies from Stampin Up. We made this cutie patootie at my card class this week. It's going to be a perfect treat for my grandson who is eighteen months.  I can't believe the fabulous ideas crafters come up with... truly amazing sometimes.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

I wish it was still a mystery

I wish it was still a mystery, cause now I know how much work is yet to come with this quilt! Behold....160/208 (lap/double) half square triangles and 320/416 1.5 inch squares completed and packed away in their mystery bags. These are just a few of the installment pieces for the Quilter's Journey Mystery Quilt class at Kindred Spirits Quilt Co. This mystery quilt is from Border Creek Station Pattern Company and the ladies in my class are doing well and keeping up quite nicely. However, I've seen the next month installment and it's all downhill from here. Just kidding! It will be a beauty when it's complete.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Bah Bah Black Sheep

This is cute as can be. It's a class being offered at Kindred Spirits Quilt Co. from the book Paper Pieced Mini Quilts by Wendy Vosters. The store will be offering a little boy version as well, complete with a John Deere tractor instead of the sheep. This would look adorable in a little girls room. It was super easy to make, just photocopy the paper pieces pattern, cut your fabric pieces, sew on the line, fold back and do it again. I stitched a row of decorative stitches along the fields to resemble a fence with posts and stitched in the ditch to quilt it together.   

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Ready for the Islands

Doesn't this little bag remind you of the islands. I love batiks and how they remind me of the Caribbean. I had a few 1.5 inch strips leftover from a previous project and saw this bag pattern on Moda Bake Shop. I thought it was perfect for the fabric and I could envision myself carrying  it on our vacation cruise to the Bahamas. I managed to finish it before we left and it was perfect for the trip. We visited Key West, Nassau and Freeport on Carnival out of Charleston and had so much fun. The pattern is posted on Moda Bake Shop and is called the Gadget purse by Nichole Willmore. It was super easy to make and I love the little bow that ties in the front.

Monday, April 18, 2011

I feel a Summer Breeze coming

I lucked out with this vintage fabric purchase. Kindred Spirits Quilt Co. just had their 1 Year Anniversary sale and I managed to pick this all up at 50% off. I love the pattern Summer Breeze from the book Scrap-Basket Surprises by Kim Brackett and this will look delightful in the pattern. The container is a mix of rainbow vintage 2.5 in strips so the quilt will be very colorful. I love when you get a great buy, makes the quilt even more special.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Can't afford gas..

OMG the price of gas. See how the truck is just parked by the pump...that's because I can't afford to put gas in it at these prices. Guess I'll just have to stay home and quilt instead...too bad eh!  This is block 6 of Tiny Town BOM offered at Kindred Spirits Quilt Co. store. Each month the block is sweeter than the month before. The ladies in the class meet the 4th Saturday of  month to work on the current month's block. They are all doing wonderfully and their little villages are coming along quite nicely.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Kindred Spirits Quilt Co. Store

These are a couple of the classes that I'm teaching at Kindred Spirits Quilt Co. in St.Catharines Ontario. The Lil Twister quilt is so much fun and looks fantastic when you complete all your pinwheel pieces. So easy to do, but so effective. Patches the Wrabbit class, just finished but he is available at the store in pattern or kit. He's just in time for Easter as well. Michelle has the store well stocked and there are so many new fabric lines that just came in. I need to stay out of the store, because every time I go, I can resist something new that has arrived. It's wonderful to teach, but horrid on the pocket book as you are always at the store and it's just too tempting.  

Friday, April 15, 2011

Twister Sisters

These are the ladies from my Lil Twister class trying to arrange their layer cakes into a pattern that is pleasing. We ran out of design wall space at the store, so we had to use the floor. There's Sue, Liz, Kathy and Linda. Jane is busy sewing cause she decided to make a charm twister instead and it was much easier to layout. I'll share the progress of the quilts as the ladies continue to twist away.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Bear with me

Bear with me as I show you more of these minis that I'm now addicted to. This little one is just the right size for my mini bear to comfy up with. We are having miniature class at Kindred Spirits Quilt Co. store and I've been making samples from my scraps. This quilt measures about 9X 7 and is made using adhesive grid fabric. Really simple. You just cut out all your pieces, lay them face up on the adhesive fabric(it's like interfacing), iron them in place, then fold and sew between the pieces. It makes perfect patches every time and looks like you slaved for days sewing pieces together.  It's a nice technique to teach beginner students.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Aqua Beauty

This is a beautiful quilt that my customer Linda brought me to longarm. She got the fabric in Florida and it just looks tropical, doesn't it. Her backing was this gorgeous aqua flannel and we quilted it in "dainty". She always does an amazing job with her quilts. Her sashing is perfect along with her points and borders, incredible as she is pretty much self taught.  Another fabulous quilt Linda, well done.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Worth the Wait

Arlene brought me this quilt to longarm for her daughter. It's taken her quite a while to get it all finished but it certainly was worth the wait. ( two years, I believe) This was Arlene's daughter's beginner quilt. She made a lovely job of it and it looks amazing for a beginner. It is for her daughter. We quilted it is Angel Wings and she had a beautiful yellow floral flannel as the backing which will make the quilt so cozy.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Roly Poly Sew Stow & Go

This is the latest pattern I designed for Kindred Spirits Quilt Co. store. It's an applique/BOM storage roll up designed to protect your pieces as you transport them. The inside is flannel so your pieces stick to it. The roll is a mailing tube which doubles as a storage tube to hold your wonder under. It's being offered as a class in the near future at the store. You just sew, stow your pieces, roll and go with the handy shoulder strap attached.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

A face only a mother could love

These are a few of the ladies in my doll class. We had so much fun, as you can see. Everyone is at  work sewing feverishly to finish Patches the Wrabbit. I was amazed at how wonderful they all turned out. Very talented doll makers I must say. Some of the ladies in my class are on their fourth class with me having previously made Garden Annie, Stitch the Witch, Holly the Christmas Angel and now Patches. Some are first time students with varying degrees of doll making experience. What ever the background, the classes are a delight to teach and attend. This is Sherry's Patches...she bought different teeth than supplied and he is adorable..I love the teeth!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Crazy 8's BOM

I belong to the Crazy 8's BOM club at Kindred Spirits Quilt Co. store.  This is block #3 in a series of 12 from Debby Kratovil Quilter's Block a Day calendar. The club is pay initially for the calendar and your first block fabric. Then once a month you go back to the store with your completed block and they give you the next month's block fabric free. If you don't have it completed, it will cost you $8.00 for your next block, so there is incentive to getting your homework done. You have the option of batiks or Kansas Trouble fabric. I love this block and the batik fabric. This block is March 3rd from the calendar and is called Arizona.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Won't be on the market long

I'm just loving this BOM called House Hunting. It's so much fun and I love the primary colors I chose. I've finished all my log cabin blocks and now I can take my time with the little house blocks monthly. Each block is a different house...two story, bungalow, chimneys, sweet and so much fun. Can't wait to see it all completed and together.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Dresden Girl

This is the latest doll designed for Kindred Spirits Quilt Co. Store for their doll classes. I've called her Dresden Girl. Her face is lightly sculpted and colored with pencil crayons. She even has individual fake eyelashes sewn in. Her skirt is a Dresden plate gathered up and attached. Her face forms the centre of the flower and she stands on a vintage candlestick.  

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

They sure don't make things like they use to

I just bought this thing....literally about 6 weeks ago. Already it had a hole in it. This is my "new" ironing board cover. Now I iron quite a bit, between the longarming and my regular quilting, plus the kids stuff, but come on...6 weeks and worn out.  I refused to buy another one so early in, so I got creative. Found some lime green batik fabric so it wouldn't fray, and added wonder under onto the back, cut out a similar paisley shape and ironed it over the hole. You can hardly tell and that should get me through another few weeks I would think.  See what happens when you retire.  It's the principle of the thing.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Jewel Tone

This was a lovely little table topper that my customer Susan brought me to longarm. When she first brought it she said it was going to be a doll quilt for her granddaughter, however when she picked it up all quilted, she now has second thoughts and I think she will be keeping it for herself. It's just too beautiful for a doll quilt. The colors are so rich and vibrant and there is a shimmer running through them. We quilted it in "happy times: and I know it will look gorgeous as a table topper.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Red and Green ARE complimentary colors

It always amazes me that red and green are complimentary colors. That is evident with this lovely little flannel quilt made by my customer Debbie. It's so sweet and I love the  little characters that she has fussy cut to fit the blocks. When she brought it, we were debating what color thread to use on the pattern and it just made sense to use the bright green and it worked perfect. I know when a quilt is a keeper, because my daughter mentioned how cute it was and how much she liked she seldom gives feedback on quilts, this one's a keeper.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Friends are...Kindred Spirits

This is the pattern I designed for Kindred Spirits Quilt Co. Store's 1st Birthday Anniversary. Michelle the owner has been in business a year. Boy, where did that year go.  Michelle gave me her logo and wanted a pattern made with the logo in mind. This is what I came up with. The pattern was a giveaway for customers who came to the store on the anniversary celebration day.  I had so much fun making it. There was a lesson learned though...spellcheck, spellcheck, spellcheck .

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Whacky Scrappy Batik

This is a very beautiful scrappy batik quilt that my customer Ruth brought me to long arm. It's sort of like one of those stack and whack methods, where you cut and sew and cut and sew. Looks fabulous and it was made for her daughter. I love the backing, a stunning pink and red patterned batik. It was quilted in the pantograph happy times.

Friday, April 1, 2011

I have a hang up for minis

This is an adaptation from Wendy Vosters book, Paper-Pieced Mini Quilts. I had a ton of Thimbleberries scraps leftover from old projects which came in handy when making this little mini. It measures 12X12 and will be one of the projects we are teaching at Kindred Spirits Quilt Co. store.  I had been trying to come up with alternative ways to hang mini quilts and this seems to work well.