Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Shoo Flying Under the Finishing Wire.

     I've been racing against time working to finish my March Goal  for OMG,and I've managed to do it, with just enough time to get out and take a photo before the sun went down.

       I fell in love with Alexandra Legerwood's Shoo Fly quilt when I saw it in the Spring 2012 Special Issue of Stitch magazine.  It's a pretty big quilt finishing at 60" by 90".  I'm pretty sure I started putting it together right this quilt has been 4 years in the making.   I made the top pretty quickly but it languished in the UFO pile until my daughter claimed it a couple of years ago and asked me to finish it for her.

     My daughter has very specific fabric tastes and I had a hard time finding a backing fabric on sale that I thought she would like.  In the end I chose this butterfly fabric because I felt it coordinates with the front but I'm pretty sure it wouldn't have been her choice.

      The quilting on the original quilt was outstanding.  I think it was done by Angela Walters and that made it very hard for me to get around to quilting it.  But I pushed myself forward knowing that my daughter not be judgemental about the quilting.  I watched the Modern Quilt Guild seminar on perfectionism and procrastination during the time period that I was working on this and I think it helped me to keep on moving.  I'm pleased with how it turned out.

     This quilt has some of my favourite fabrics in it, including these fun little monkeys,

 so I'm glad this quilt is staying in the family and that I will have visiting rights.  
     This quilt is my fourth finish for the first quarter of the Year of Lovely Finishes.  My original post is here.  It's also my OMG for March so I'm linking up with Heidi of Red Letter Quilts for One Monthly Goal.  I'm really grateful to both of these linkups for helping to keep me on track.  I'm also linking up with TGIFF which is hosted  this week by Fiona of Celtic Thistle Stiches  , and because I just noticed the link up I'm linking with Anne of Fret Knot Yourself  for the April Kaleidoscope of Butterflies.

Monday, 21 March 2016

The quilting has begun!

     I've managed to find some time to work on quilting my daughter's quilt.  I started the quilting on Friday which was her birthday. I sent her pictures and she was very excited and happy with the quilting so far.

    The blocks are 18" square and it's a challenge for me to make the loops to fit the space but I'm happy with my progress with free motion quilting on my domestic machine.

     My plan is to continue with swirls in the background, wavy lines in the centres and loops in the shoo flies.  I'm also thinking I might vary the pattern in some of the shoo flies.  Now that I've started, I'm thinking I can finish this by month end if things don't go too crazy by then.  As usual I'm linking up with Main Crush Monday and Let's Bee Social.

Friday, 18 March 2016

My Forays into Garment Sewing

     The folks at my local quilt shop have been sporting a lot of Scout Tee's lately and I decided to try my hand at making one.  I'm not much of a garment sewer, being one of those kid's that really struggled at home ec when I was younger so I only try things that are really easy.  Two summers ago  I made two Wiksten Tanks which you can see at the bottom of the post.

     I'm always a bit nervous that clothing won't fit right so the first time I try a pattern I make it out of sale fabric.  It takes the pressure off of making it with the awesome expensive fabric I have in mind for the project. So here's my prototype.

     It's a stash buster made with a green/grey fabric from Mrs. March's Collection by Lecien.  I bought this fabric on sale several years ago.  The pattern is a Grainline Studio pattern rated at level one beginner.  It was the perfect level of sewing for me given my current level of busyness.

     This does not mean that it went off without a hitch.  Most of it did come together very nicely but right before I put the last sleeve in I received a phone call that was a little upsetting.  This is what happened when I put the sleeve in.

     That's right, it was inside out!  I pulled out the stitches turned it right side out and started to pin it.  The next night I finished pinning it and sewed it in again.  

     I noticed this tuck and on further inspection......

I realized I sewed the sleeve in upside down! Oh well lesson learned, hopefully.  As they say the third time is the charm and it worked out in the end.

    Here are the two Wiksten tanks I made previously.  First the prototype. Made from now unknown green fabric I bought on sale...

and next the one I really love.

made from Elk Grove by birch fabrics.  Expect to see the leftovers from this shirt featured in a group quilt in the future.
I'm linking up with TGIFF which is hosted by Jenn at Quarter Inch From the Edge this week.

Wednesday, 16 March 2016

From February Frenzy to March Madness

     This is what is beside my sewing machine right now.

     It's score 1 from the Improv Handbook for Modern Quilters.  I'm working on it for a challenge for the Toronto Modern Guild.  I'm thinking of calling it "Can't Cut with Scissors" as I have been finding cutting straight lines with scissors a little difficult, so some of the squares are turning into rectangles...but that will just make this piece my own I suppose. 

      Things have been fairly quiet on the blog over the last month or so this is because things have not been quite so quiet out in the rest of my life and squeezing in sewing time and blogging time has been a bit more difficult.  
     Many of you will know that my 87 year old aunt had a fall in February and this is what has taken up most of my time.  My sister and I have been going into the city to visit her and check on her progress,meet with various health professionals and make arrangements with her apartment.  It takes up a lot of time and it's emotionally exhausting.
     There have been bright lights however.  My nephew and his partner had their second child in February.  Charlotte came so quickly into this world that she was delivered by her father under the guidance of the emergency operator.  They live four hours away so I have yet to meet her but I've seen lot's of pictures and she's gorgeous.
     And the most exciting thing for me is that my grandson was born yesterday morning.  No sharing of pictures on the blog though so you will have to take my word for it that he is also gorgeous.  Gabriel's most outstanding feature so far is that he has a full head of blond hair.  My son was born with a full head of black hair.  So he takes after both of his parents in the hair department.  Other than that he so far seems to be the spitting image of his mother.
     Here's something I managed to accomplish.

     This is the March Stash bee block for Amanda.  We were asked to make this scrappy cross block in shade of navy or shades of mint or shades of kelly green.  One of the things about joining the stash bee is you get to see the limitations of your stash.  I have no kelly green and only two mint green fabrics, and I have a lot of fabrics in my stash that are multi coloured.  I did find three navy fabrics in my scrap bins that I hope work for Amanda.  Here's a closeup of my fabrics.

     The solid and the print with dragonflies are both Japanese fabric scraps left over from the quilt on my bed.  I'll share it in a Throwback Thursday post some day.  I'm not sure what Amanda has planned for her blocks but the inspiration quilt which you can find here is phenomenal.

     So far I'm really enjoying making all these blocks.  I get to see all these possible quilts that I could make.  It's good to have possibilities don't you think.  I'm linking up with Lets Bee Social to see what possibilities I can find over there.

Monday, 7 March 2016

Sweet Little Group Finish

     Here's a lovely little finish to share with you.  I'm part of the community outreach committee of my local guild and each member of that committee comes up with a pattern or tutorial that can be used in the monthly guild newsletter for members to make scrap blocks from.  In September I shared the medallion log cabin tutorial by Tanya Quilts in Colorado and we received enough blocks (including block kits we handed out at guild) to make three quilts .

     This is the first of the three to be completely finished.  My friend Wendy used her domestic machine to quilt loops over the quilt top.  
     When quilting with blocks from lots of different quilters things don't always turn out the same.  This quilt top is proof that things don't have to be perfect to work out just fine.  Several of the blocks in this quilt were not quite large enough.  Patricia trimmed the blocks down to a consistent  size.  It looks so pretty in the shadows in the snow doesn't it.
I'm linking her up to Main Crush Monday and to Let's Bee Social.

Tuesday, 1 March 2016

OMG for March

     Well February brought me lots of challenges and consequently I came no where near completing my One Monthly Goal for February, so it's become my goal for March.
I did manage to pin baste my quilt.

     I also did a little practising along with my Christina Camelli Craftsy class.

     I'm feeling optimistic.  My aunt is now in a physical  rehabilitation centre.  She will be given physiotherapy and also some evaluation to determine what kinds of support she will need to return home.   I've got a couple of weeks until my  Grandson is born, so maybe, just maybe I can get this one quilted this month.   Linking up to OMG at Red Letter Quilts and with Let's Bee Social at Sew Fresh Quilts.