Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Snowman #2

I had some time tonight to get a little sewing done. I added snowman #2 to the Under the Stars quilt.
Snowman #2

progress to date
Two weeks ago we got a snow day and it was glorious. Secretly, I'm hoping for another one tomorrow - so I can sew all day. If it would just get colder...

Saturday, 23 February 2013

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Under the stars progress

I've got all the applique pieces cut out and sort of prepared. I've used my usual method of freezer paper and starch but it doesn't work as well on flannel as it does on regular cotton. My turned under seam allowance pops out instead of staying under.
missing the eyes

So far I like it but maybe the only guy without a pompom needs one. I goofed when I got the kit - I took it apart and carefully took a photo of each fabric piece and the label. Then, while trying to organize them on my phone into an album, I erased them all. There was some swearing but I think I've got it worked out.
Now I need to decide how I'm going to applique the pieces to the background. The sample I saw used a machine stitched blanket stitch in black thread - but I think that looks a little too country for me.
I tried out some samples and here's what I got:
top row left - grey thread

top row right - black thread

middle row all white thread; tried the colour and played with which stitch I wanted

bottom row left taupe silk thread (what I use to hand applique)

bottom row right - hand applique so there's nothing to see
I think I'm going to go with the hand applique. My machine won't get the blanket stitch as close together as I'd like and I've shorted the stitch length as far as it will go. And I'm worried the cat might get her nails caught in them.
Any thoughts?

Monday, 18 February 2013

Design Wall Monday

These are all my Dear Jane blocks for this month - 10 in total. I'm happy with how they turned out. They'll likely come off the design wall in a day or two to make room for something else. Dear Jane class is next Saturday so I can almost pack them in the bag for class.

February 18th
I'm linking up to Patchworktimes and will pop over later to see what everyone else has on their design wall. It's one of my favourite blog posts of the week.

Sunday, 17 February 2013


I do like working on my Dear Jane quilt - finishing those fiddly squares and triangles gives me a sense of skill and accomplishment.
These triangles were a bit of a pain. A lot of paper piecing in this one:
It turned out fine. Maybe my eyesight is going though because it looks like it leans to the left a little. Actually, most of my triangles look like they lean to the left. I hope when they all get sewn together that they straighten out!

This is likely the hardest triangle in the border. I had to psyche myself up for it. It turned out fine:


My picture doesn't do the medallion piecing justice - I'll have to try for a more close up picture tomorrow.

I'm all caught up for my January homework (still behind on 2012 blocks though - they'll get done).  My next class is next Saturday where we all reveal our blocks and get our next assignment. We're going to get more triangles every month so that we get them finished.

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

I've been cutting and I don't like stripes

Tonight I did some cutting for my Under the Stars quilt. It needs 156 3"x3" blocks - I just cut up all the fabric so I'm not sure how many I have. I hope I have way more than enough cause I don't like all the fabric.

Here's one of each block:
It's a little dark in the sewing room at night
I don't really like row 1, 2nd from right (red and green plaid) or row 2, second from left (red, black, white stripes). I just don't like them and hope I don't have to use them. Everything else I'm okay with or like.

Here's the thing that I learned about stripes - on the very first quilt I ever pieced - if they aren't on the straight of grain, they'll always look crooked. I don't like crooked unless it's on purpose, it makes me feel wonky and off kilter, and I think it makes me look like I can't sew a straight seam. Ironically, on this quilt, the two fabrics I don't really like are fairly straight on the grain and the other stripes are off. For this quilt, I'll call that whimsy.

Monday, 11 February 2013

Design Wall Monday

Now that I have a design wall I want to post about what's on it.  This is my Dear Jane progress for the month of February. I still have 2 triangle blocks to go and almost 2 weeks to finish them.

I'm linking up to Patchwork Times too.

Sunday, 10 February 2013

M13 and a switch of direction

I finished M13 today. That is the last of the square blocks for this month. I have 2 triangle blocks to do which involve a lot of paper piecing and I don't feel like doing that right now.

And I was thinking this afternoon. I'm sewing and sewing on the Dear Jane and I get 10 blocks done a month, but I don't have enough to sew into something yet, so it feels like I don't get much accomplished.

So, I decided tonight to start cutting up a flannel kit that I bought a few years ago. I've been thinking about this quilt since I moved into my new house. I want to snuggle under it in front of the fire, and since it's almost mid February, maybe I should get busy on it.

Here's the pattern:

And here's the flannel from the kit that I started cutting up:

These aren't really my colours, but I have a thing for snowmen so I'll love it anyway.

Saturday, 9 February 2013


Today I had to do the house work blessings jobs I didn't do yesterday - or last week for that matter. I did get a little done tonight though:
I did use far fewer seams than the pattern called for. The pattern has the white background cut in four then sewn together again, and a full circle on the outside ring, with white on white in the blank spaces. That is too much fussing for me on this block.

Friday, 8 February 2013

Snow day = sew day

Since school got cancelled with all the snow I decided to sew all day - well, after I slept in, ate, and shovelled twice.  I'm sure I've got over a foot here - haven't measure yet but it's over my boot tops. I'm afraid of what will happen when the plow goes down the street and closes in the end of my driveway. The plow hasn't been down yet and people are getting stuck.

D1 - paper pieced and turned out much better than the last paper pieced block



K6 - paper pieced this one too

Thursday, 7 February 2013


This is just regularly pieced - I'm taking a break from paper piecing - at least until the next block that requires it.


Tuesday, 5 February 2013

Paper Piecing Gone Awry or Maybe I Should Keep My Suggestions To Myself

My friend L was trying a paper pieced block the other day and lamented on her blog about how it didn't turn out quite like she wanted. I've done some paper piecing so offered some, what I thought was sage, advice.
I should follow my own advice more carefully.
Behold, A9, too small and choppy on all four sides - which I can fix with sashing - but it is a rather sorry sight at the moment. I, however, am not sorry enough to throw it out and start again - not after 2 evenings of sewing and all this paper piecing!
My problem on the edges lies with my pieces being a bit too small.

However, I've stuck it to the design wall and I'm carrying on. Better finished than perfect.

Sunday, 3 February 2013

I made a design wall

I have wanted one of these for awhile. I used this tutorial by Elaine and bought the flannel from her too!
My foam insulation is purple, from Home Depot - 1" x 24" x 96" and I trimmed off a little more than 10" so it would fit in my space. I had to get a friend with a van to help me get it from the store. They were around $14 each. All together it cost about $40 for the materials and took about 2 hours.

sewing room before the design wall

taping on the flannel to the insulation

design wall up with one lonely quilt block on it
I put the ironing board back in front of the design wall, cause I don't have any other place for it (yet).