Monday, 20 February 2017

My Second Quilt

     It is a very sunny Monday and I did think I would have a completed Meadow Mystery top to share but I ran into difficulties with it...I'll explain it when I get it finished.  I won't be able to finish it by the end of the month because I will be in Savannah at Quilt Con. (I still can't believe this!)  It's very close to completion but I have to fix a block.

     Instead I will share my 2nd quilt top.  Lee Ann at Devoted quilter is hosting a link up for your first quilt.  My first quilt was made for my nephew Eric.  He's Charlotte's father and you can see the quilt I just made for her here.  I didn't take any pictures of the first quilt, and as Eric was a student at the time, the quilt ended up on the couch with the cats, I think it has gone to the great beyond.  Eric's quilt was made in a beginner quilting class at Greenwood Quiltery, which sadly is no more.  I think I made it about 11 years ago.

   A couple of years after I made Eric's quilt and with a few table runners under my belt I arranged for some friends to chip in for a quilting class for my friend Pauline who was interested in learning.  She of course wanted me to do the class with her so, I took my second beginner class and made this quilt here to go in my living room.

     I didn't finish the quilt because of course, it was for me.  Instead I went on to make quilts for both my kids and for a friend who had a baby and on and on.  I only got the top totally together in the last couple of years.  So now I have this top hanging around the sewing room, but hopefully not for long.  The completion of this quilt is going to be my OMG for March. Wish me luck!  I'm going to need it as I have to work up my tutorial for Stash bee for April when I'm the Queen Bee!  I'm linking up with My First Quilt at Devoted Quilter.

Wednesday, 15 February 2017

A bit of a Catch Up

     Normally in the my region we get about 86 hours of sunlight during the month of January.  This year we got 12 hours.  I know it's February , but here's the thing.  We are all tired and sad up here and it's been a bit harder to keep up with quilting and blogging.  I'm pretty much mainlining the sunshine vitamin (that's Vitamin D in case you don't know).   But February has given us a few sunny moments and next week I go to Savannah so I'll stop complaining now.   

     Here I'll give you some love instead.  

     The scrappy heart is my block for my February Stash Bee Queen, Paula. She asked for the scrappy heart blocks to use in quilts she is making for seniors. It' didn't have to be red but I had a lot of red fabrics calling to me.  It was a fun little block to make.  The block with the sheep is a mini I'm hoping to finish tonight to give to my secret valentine at work.  Here's a closeup so you can take in the true cuteness of the sheep.

          This is what I received.  It will give you a little more insight into my character.   I need the protection from weirdos (the bad kind) and rude people because I work in retail.  Take note that not all weirdos are considered to be bad and I do have to note that 98% of our customers are awesome.

     This little gift made me really really happy!  

     Continuing with the theme of red.  I made these huge blocks to take to Quilt Con with Me.

     They are for a workshop on Friday night with Riane Menardi of Vessel Quilts.  It's called Quilt Remix and the object of the workshop is to take a traditional block and turn it into a modern quilt.  I am so excited!  I'm linking up with Let's Bee Social and I hope to find some time over the next couple of days to catch up with my blogging friends.

Wednesday, 8 February 2017

A House or a Home

     After the shooting at a Mosque in Quebec City the Montreal Modern Quilt Guild put out the call for  House blocks. They are making quilts to donate to the families of the victims in the shooting. You can read more about this project here.  The Toronto Modern Guild is putting together a quilt and I made the block below to add to that quilt.

     The shooting in Quebec City has really shaken many Canadians.  We are a pretty peaceful place for the most part.  Many of us are thinking about our roles going forward in making sure that our Country supports all Canadians no matter what our origins or religion.

     I am a first generation Canadian.  My parents immigrated here from England after World War Two.  I have never felt unwelcome here.  Canada has always felt like home.  I have been reading articles where people have been talking about their experiences here, which are quite different from mine.   Yesterday I read an article in the Toronto Star where a first generation Canadian whose parents immigrated from Pakistan  said Canada was perhaps not a home for her but just a house.  The intention of the Montreal Modern Quilt Guild in making the quilts is that Muslims in Quebec City will be able to feel like Canada is their home.  I hope that this is the case and that all of us  can move towards making all people feel more welcome.  

      Today at work we received a box from one of our suppliers.  Someone in the warehouse had used a red marker to draw several hearts on the box and had written the message "True love is not an emotion it is an action".  This is something worth remembering.

          House blocks are also a theme at my local guild.  Last year Martina posted a tutorial in Stash Bee for making stack and wack improv houses.  I had a lot of fun making them and got permission to share the tutorial with my guild for a block lotto.  The block lotto is a fun way to get more blocks for the community outreach committee of the guild.  We get some of the blocks and someone wins the rest.  I kept my blocks untrimmed so the lucky winner can trim them as they like.  It should be a fun quilt or quilts as these little blocks are pretty adorable.  

     I'm also working on my Stash Bee block for this month.

     Here's my progress so far.  Check back next week to see what this turns into.  I'm linking up with Lorna at Let's Bee Social.  Have you been doing any social sewing this week?

Friday, 3 February 2017

February OMG

     It's time to come up with a goal for February.  I've decided to keep things low key this month.  February is a short month and I'm going to Quilt Con (yay) which makes it even shorter.  I've also got some advance sewing to do for a workshop I'm taking. So instead of trying to complete a quilt, I've decided to focus on catching up with my quilt alongs.  
    I'll have a Stash Bee Block to make and at least a couple of blocks for the Honey Pot Bee, but the specific goal I've settled on for February is to get my Meadow Mystery Quilt top sewn together.  I still have to put January's blocks together before I can do that but I think it's doable.  Here are the strip setts for January's blocks.

     I finished my January goal but unfortunately I missed the link up for setting January's goal.  Guess what!  Patty at Elm Street Quilts now has a sign up to receive notice when the link up opens up.  I signed up for that as I obviously need it.
I'm heading over to the link up now.  Do you have a Goal for February?

Saturday, 28 January 2017

Allison Glass Quilt Finish!

     I did it!  I finished my Allison Glass Challenge quilt .  I haven't posted for a while because this quilt is pretty much all I've done quilting wise besides sorting through fabric and then cutting fabric for my local guild.  But I've got it done and here it is.

      I took the quilt out to the front porch to take some photos.  After two weeks of no snow and very grey skies, mother nature decided to bring back winter  with some snow.  It's still pretty grey though so I had to brighten the photos.

     My Allison Glass fabric is from the "Hand Made" collection.  It's been in my stash for a couple of years and it was high time I used it.  I was really happy when Yvonne of Quilting Jet Girl decided to hold an Allison Glass Challenge and  link up and challenged us to make something with our Allison Glass fabrics.  Because the fabrics in this collection are fairly large scale I decided to use simple 15" square plus blocks to show them off.   The background fabric is a Kafe Fasset Shot Cotton. It looks yellow on many computers but it's really a yellow/green. The backing is an Amy Butler fabric Dew which is part of the Forest Line, if I'm reading my selvedge correctly.

     I used my walking foot to quilt organic wavy lines, lengthwise down the quilt.  The batting is a very thin cotton, thinner than I would like.  My local quilt shop recently closed (insert sad face here) and I am still figuring out the battings at the alternative shop across town.  It's not a exactly a quilt shop.  It's more of a cheap junk shop that also sells tons of fabric some of which is quilting fabric.  The material is not well organized and there is little in the way of customer service, but they do have some good fabric and I managed to find my backing fabric there.  

      This finish is my first finish of the 2017 FAL first quarter.  The original list is here and the button is in the side bar.  It's also my OMG for January but I missed the deadline for posting the initial goal.  I'm linking it up with Yvonne (Quilting Jet Girl) for the Allison Glass Challenge link up.  I'll also link up with Beth at Cooking Up Quilts for Main Crush Monday because this quilt has been my main crush for a while, and with Finish it Up Friday which is hosted at Summer Lee Quilts this week.  Now if only we would get some sun.

Monday, 16 January 2017

A Weekend Trip


  On Friday I boarded a Greyhound bus to Toronto at 7:55 in the morning.  You see Bernie from Needle and Foot was there celebrating her son's wedding and we arranged to meet each other!  Leaving so early in the morning I forgot to bring my camera so no smiling photos of us, but there are some awesome photos of the wedding on instagram.  We met in her hotel lobby and headed to a nearby coffee shop where we chatted for oh about an hour and a half about our families, our quilting plans, how we got into blogging.....  What fun to meet another quilt blogging friend in person.

     It was a beautiful day and after Bernie went back to her family I walked around the city for a bit and then I went to the Textile Museum which is one of my favourite places in Toronto.  There were a couple of exhibits of woven textiles on display.  One display  was a on the works of weaver Sheila Hicks. I found her works to be very beautiful and inspirational.  There was also lot's of inspiration to be found during the walk, in building design and furniture in shop windows. I have to say I'm finding the 2017  30 quilt design challenge to be a lot of fun.  I'm starting to see designs everywhere and learning how to take the things I see and shift them into something I could possibly make into a quilt.  I also find using coloured pencils to be very relaxing in the evening.

     I stayed with my daughter overnight and Dwight came in to meet us for brunch in the morning.  We went to a lovely little cafe called Cocoa Latte and from there we went to the local food market at the Wychwood Barns.  Before we drove home Dwight and I visited my aunt and brought her a wing backed chair that he found for her.  She is still doing fairly well and we are hoping that she can stay in her apartment for as long as possible.

     I spent the rest of Saturday and most of Sunday working on my Allison Glass quilt.  I managed to finish all the blocks and now I am putting the quilt top together.  I'm hoping to quilt it by the end of the month, but I do need to find a backing fabric and some batting as well. Are you working on an Allison Glass project for the challenge link up.  I'm really pleased that Yvonne decided to host this challenge as it encouraged me to actually make something with the "Hand Made" fabric that has been in my stash for quite some time. I'm linking up with Beth at Main Crush Monday and with Lorna at Let's Bee Social as well.

Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Quilting, Politics and Inspiration

     Last week I had a visit with my local M.P. He represents my area federally for those of you in the U.S.A. who may not know what I'm talking about. I was visiting him on behalf of my work to talk to him about proposed changes in legislation that would affect us.  Despite the fact that I had met him before (he shops in our store) I was very nervous about this.

     So what does a quilter do in the morning before she has to meet with her M.P.  She sews of course.  I found making the Stash Bee Hive 3 Bear Paw blocks for Tracy really helped to calm me down.  Deep breathing and meditation was also very useful.

     The meeting went very well and was actually quite interesting.  I had to wait for a while before the meeting and I had quite a bit of time to look at this.

     Of course I asked for a copy and I've had some fun using the flags as inspiration for quilt designs for the 2017 30 quilt design challenge which you can read more about here.
Here are two designs I've come up with so far.

   This is a block design.  There are four of them in the photo and it's pretty much identical toe the Carignan Saliere flag except I changed the crosses from white to yellow.

     This is a full quilt design and it's based roughly on the Bearn flag.

     I've been enjoying the quilt design challenge.  I'm trying to approach it one design at a time, putting my emphasis more on the here and now, rather than the big number.  I'm linking up with Lorna of Sew Fresh Quilts for Let's Bee Social.  Now she is quite the designer.