As a courtesy to me and the universe, please speak to me before you copy or transcribe anything from this blog for profit- my work may be unpublished but it is of value to me, and if you are using my ideas to profit, hey, I want my cut of it!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Stippling Along

Where has the summer gone? I have to say that this has been the first true summer in a long time in Calgary. Warm days and nights, barely any rain, after the deluge in June. It is with great sadness that I say goodbye to the early sunrises and the temperatures are falling in the evenings. And yesterday, true to form, there were strong winds, as if to rattle the leaves off trees. In our part of the country, the predominant tree is the poplar, which go golden and shed very quickly. No doubt, I have seen patches of gold amongst the trees and it won't be long now that they will blossom gold and shed. Time to programme my daylight alarm clock as I am sure I will find it difficult to wake up without the sunlight.

I have been quilting more since my last post. I was struck by a tree quilt I saw posted on my wanderings and have pinned it on Pinterest and I wanted to attempt a quilt to see if I could do it. My friend Stephanie just had a little baby girl and so I made one for her. Fortuitously, I had picked the right colour (brown, with the pink heart) and when I saw she had green curtains, I picked green for the binding. She loved the quilt and I hope baby Gabrielle loves it too. It is backed with a fleecy baby blanket I got from Ikea. Making the free form lines of the " bark" on the "tree" was relatively easy and I thoroughly enjoyed the process. I did break three needles in a row when quilting this but I figured it was just me pulling and tugging impatiently and once I became aware of this, I stopped breaking needles. The heart is appliqued on and embroidered the name and dates in a chainstitch.

I also was inspired to make my very own Hudson Bay blanket quilt. To actually buy a wool one would cost an arm and a leg. I wanted to practice more free motion quilting so I bravely cut into my kona snow and went with a large off white expanse with just the iconic stripes, although the blue is not quite right as it needed to be more navy. I really love the look. And my free motion quilting is still a little stilted but I am learning. My stippling is very stilted and I can't seem to make the "Twosies" and "threesies". I need to practice plenty more times. Since this blanket is for me, I really don't care if the quilting is off. I still have to bind it but managed to FMQ in a day. The biggest thing I learnt from this is to check the directionality of the print of the backing before pinning everything together since I discovered it is upside down after I started quilting. Ack!! I think I shall bind it with some gray fabric so it doesn't distract from the starkness of the off white. I have recently been inspired by first nations teepees and may attempt more quilts with very graphic images and more solid colours. I think I am slowly venturing into what is known as modern quilting!

I am pleased that I am using my new sewing machine more and am using it for what I got it for- free motion quilting. I have questioned my choice from time to time as I do think the new machine is a little advanced, with all the fancy stitches that I will most likely  never use but I may surprise myself and attempt to work with these fancy stitches after all. Now, let's hope the stipes are colourfast as I took a chance and did not prewash the fabric before sewing them all together.  In hindsight, all that white is begging to be stained any colour and not all the fabrics were quilting cottons since I have a perchant for shopping in the discount section. I am going to tack some colour catchers to the quilt when it goes for it's first wash, just in case.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Summer doings

I know it has been ages since I posted. Call me lazy. I have not been paper crafting much lately. My obsession with quilting has deepened and I recently bought a new sewing machine so that I can free motion quilt.  I am not convinced I like it any more than the old machine, which incidentally isn't all that old to begin with. The new machine, a Husqvarna Sapphine 835 does seem to have lovely features like needle down and up as well as the reverse button so I can sew forwards and backwards with a touch of the button but more importantly, I can free motion quilt (FMQ) with ease since it has a FMQ setting which the old machine did not.

So, I am finally done hand quilting the Pink Quilt. I was lucky enough to have a lovely spot to take my pictures- was out by Millarville at a friend's place and she had a lovely yard with a rail fence.

The handstitching was a long haul process. Am so glad I know can FMQ from now on.

I had also put together another quilt using some oriental fabrics squares I had picked up from Pat Borecky. I need to find the lady and buy many more since I am in love with the quilt and want to make another one to keep for myself.

The other quilt is a baby quilt I but together using Tim and Beck's Bungle Jungle charm pack. I did it to practice my FMQ and alls I have to say is I surely need the practice!

My mistake was quilting so closely and so the quilt is somewhat stiff. Maybe it would have been better if I had used a fleece backing but I only wanted to add one variable at a time to my FMQ journey. I want to set myself up for success since I wasn't having much luck with FMQ, even on the new machine.

 One step at a time, right?
Hope everyone is having a wonderful summer.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

In progress

My pink and brown quilt in progress. Outer border attached- check. Backing and batting attached-check. I am in the process of hand quilting the quilt. Sigh. It is going to take forever since I am also quilting words in some of the blocks. I really need to get started on learning how to machine quilt. I have everything except the extension table.

I also got some doggie stamps and made the greyhound card. It is chasing an envelope. I am just editing this to say the greyhound doggie stamp is from

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Work in Progress

So, these are a few of the things I have been working on lately. I was in a Pennant Swap with some crafty friends. Of course, I left it to the last minute and my muse was slow in coming. I have seen the work of my swapmates and they are a supercreative bunch so I can't wait to see what I get back from them.I just hope that they like my efforts as much as I like theirs.

I also went back to a quilt I started before Christmas- the pink quilt. It was a fat quarter pack I had picked up and it was mostly from the Moda line Aviary and I thought it would go together nicely but much to my horror, I didn't much like the combination together because it was too busy. I decided I was going to separate out the blocks with a brown border, except I kinda ran out of brown border. As you can see from the picture, I kinda have some of the border in. Went back to the quilt store but found out they have run out of the colour. Lesson learnt- always make sure you have enough material to execute your design!! I still have enough to finish the inner borders but may need to look to a different colour for the outer border. My flash isn't working so well- either that or the quilt looks a lot more pink to me in real life. All in all, I am not in love with this quilt but maybe that comes later as I work on it. Maybe I will have the courage to machine quilt this one. So far, I have been handquilting my quilts. But I did pick up a darning foot and am fast running out of excuses to start machine quilting. Even if it is just random filler loops. I apologize for the formatting- I am having issues with Blogger and it is driving me crazy.