Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Christmas CD GiveAway at Chocolate on My Cranium

Chocolate on My Cranium is hosting a giveaway for a wonderful Christmas CD. Check out her blog to see how to enter. You have the chance for an entry for 1 of 4 cd's if you comment by Wednesday December 9th. If you don't win you can buy direct from the artist for less than $12. Her blog is It's All About the Baby.

I have tried for 20 minutes now to post a picture of the CD cover to no avail. I really need to improve my blogging skills. The songs I heard were lovely and unexpected.


Monday, November 16, 2009

Joy in the New Year Challenge

So I have put off joining this challenge hosted by Tallgrass Prairie Studio long enough. I may not get all of the projects done but it's worth a shot. Not much to do right! The challenge is Joy in the New Year. Trying to complete the unfinished projects hiding around our spaces and find a clean slate for the new year.

Wip's to complete by the end of December 2009:

1. Lisa and Angelica's quilts and pillow cases
2. Charlie citrus quillow
3. I spy blankie for Marcus
4. Pay it forward gifts
5. About 10 aprons
6. Dinner napkins
7. Unsicker baby boy quilt
8. Spencer's Stocking
9. Adam guitar quillow
10. Reupholster the wing back chair

Friday, November 13, 2009

Project update for 2009

So, I've finished a few small projects but the the big ones that really need to be done are't quite there yet. I would love to add links to the posts for all of these but I may never get the post up if I do! The same for pictures with the post. Maybe the next one.

Projects completed....
1. Elizabeth's fairy quilt
2. Nephew's quilt (much past due)
3. William's Quillow
4. Project Improv blocks
5. Bushfire blocks
6. Rueben's quilt
6. Spencer's quilt
7. Trent's quilt
8. Leslie's baby quilt
9. Quilt for my Mom
10. Quilt for my Dad
11. Baby quilt for new niece or nephew

Projects In Progress...
1. Ian Flame quilt
2. Lisa and Angelica's quilts (triangles cut)
3. L &A Pillow cases to match
4. Pay it Forward gifts (still have one more to give...)
5. Baby Boy Unsicker's quilt
6. About a dozen others in various stages of completion!

Projects in the Wings...
1. Quilt for US!
2. Adam's Quillow
3. Bathrobes and slippers
4. Spencer's Christmas Stocking
5. Ian's twin quilt
6. Charlie's citrus quillow
7. Burbank Christmas gift
8. 10 Aprons
9. Small I Spy quilt

Monday, October 26, 2009

Baby Thomas' Quilt

Our newest Nephew was born on the 8th and the package is ready to go out to him today. Here is the quilt and what I've included for the first time parents. The blocks are for his Christmas gift. These blocks are great. My 13 month old kicks these around and chases them. I added bells to these too. I made a little bag to put them all in. The great gift is the blocks all wrapped up. Then I had the kids paint a small (3"x4") canvas each in the blue and brown nursery colors. Then there is a bunch of goodies for a new wee one and mom too! Long sleeve onesies with ties sewn on (not the one I had orginally seen but this is good. I left my tie loose so he can chew on it), a bird (I added a bell and it makes a great chew toy), bibs (I need to make the neck bigger on the next ones), diaper clutch and of course the quilt. Pictures below are quilt front, back and the onesies.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Fall Blogger's Quilt Festival

It's that time again. Amy at Park City Girl is hosting a fall Blogger's Quilt Festival. Get ready to be inspired and make new friends.
I was going to put the button (which is super awesome) right here but my skills at blogging are very slim. I really should stick with quilting production instead of typing about it!
I've chosen a quilt this time that gave me a very hard time. This quilt was for my In-laws and I asked for color samples for inspiration. It took me two years to find the right fabric and get the pattern sorted out. Did I mention it's King sized? I have friend in Nashville who has a long-arm machine at her in-laws and she was kind enough to let me spend an entire day working on the quilt. Her in-laws actually fed us dinner to because we were there for so long!
This quilt was designed using EQ5. Many, many drafts went into finding the right one to highlight the fabric and take my love of diamonds to a new level. The quilt is made in quadrants which made the assembly much easier than it could have been. It was essential that I labeled each fabric and where it would go when I was sewing the strip sets together.
An introduction to my life as a quilter and fabric collector can be found here. Hope you enjoy.
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Friday, September 25, 2009

Art Project Inspired by Matisse

I posted this over at our family blog but thought those who peruse this blog might enjoy this little viewing.

We used the idea in the listed post (see below) as a spring board. We painted our background on watercolor paper and it took us all day because we had to let the paper dry in between. For the fish we painted a sheet with various shades of yellow and orange and the striped fish were a tissue paper glued to cardstock. We also did one sheet for the goldfish bowls and then I cut it in 4 so we each had our own to work with.

I love how different each of our works are. That is the joy of art. Interpretation!

So with the kids all being home this week I thought it might be fun to do an art project following along with what they are doing at school. For the past couple of weeks they have been studying Henri Matisse in art class.

I googled art projects using Matisse and came across this project. I loved the idea. It proved more complex and the kids were frustrated more than once during the day long project! Goldfish seemed like a fun idea during a rainy week.

Here is what we turned out.

William, age 3

Elizabeth, age 8

Ian, age 6Mom, age (well you don't need to know!)

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Pay it Forward with a Craft

UPDATE: I just wanted to say this project is still on. I only have one comment to go!
I originally posted this in February. But as September is wearing on we have had a week straight of rain I thought I would bring this post to the front. I am still working on my gifts. Life has a way of sneaking up and taking over the fun projects!
A friend posted this and I thought it might be nice to send out something to others. I get a little caught up in my own life sometimes.

Her words:"This is how it works..... The first 3 people to leave a comment on this post will receive a hand made gift from me during this year. When and what will be a surprise. BUT, in order for you to leave a comment on this post, you must first post a "pay it forward" on your blog. (That means that sometime during this year you will send a gift to 3 people as well.) Get it? So, the first 3 people to comment on this post who have already posted a "Pay it Forward" will be the lucky ones! Good Luck!"

"I'm not into chain things (letters, sticker clubs, whatever), I won't insist that you do, too, but I'll send a little handmade something to the first 3 commenters. February is just that depressing. It needs a bit of joy. Crafty joy :)"

I have an idea of what the little somethings I make will be but a surprise it will be.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

IBOL--Iraqi Bundles of Love Update

If you heard about this project here or elsewhere I thought you might be interested in an update. IBOL guy just posted about the state of things. Current count for Bundles of Love is 1921! Lots more in the mail.

You all rock!!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

IBOL Sundae

While we didn't actually get to have the Sundaes on Sunday we did eat. And they were good. We included bananas, strawberries, caramel sauce, ganache and Neapolitan ice cream.

They were enjoyed by one and all!
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Wednesday, September 9, 2009

The First (and Second)

Carol over at a scot in tennesee featured me this week in her blog hop post. She asked that I talk a bit about the beginnings. This is the first quilt I made. It was for my BIL for his wedding. I began quilting back in August of 2001. The wedding was in the middle of September 2001. I had about a month to choose fabric, cut, piece and quilt. Squares should be simple right? For the most part I like this quilt. Love the colors. I did my best but lets just say I really should make them another quilt! I hand tied it during the reception! I think it was supposed to be queen sized but I'm not sure what the dimensions ended up being. I have learned a great deal since this first quilt. I am still okay with being imperfect in quilting. If I worried about perfection I would never get any quilts done.

This star quilt was started at the same time (or shortly thereafter) for my brother who happened to get married a week earlier than Scott's brother. I was unable to attend his wedding because I was going to fly out on 9/11. I would run through the emotions of not being able to attend and the awe over what happened that day but we were all there. There was no way for me to get on a plane let alone cross the border to Canada. This star quilt I jumped into head first like so many of my quilts. I thought stars? Diamonds? What can be so hard about this? Well it was a little harder than planned but I love the way it turned out. It was all strip pieced and I hand quilted part of it then ran out of time so machine quilted the rest of it. My sister and her husband came to visit from Banff and they took it and delivered it for me. I think the quilt hung on the wall for a long time. Their apartment had a dark wood paneled wall. It helped to brighten up the place.
I dove into quilting head first and have never looked back. I still love the creation process.
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Friday, September 4, 2009

Projects in progress

One of two triangle quilts I am working on for two nieces. They have been cut out and waiting for this step for far too long. I am very hopeful that I can get these twin quilts done before Halloween. It will be a big stretch to get big quilts done in a timely manner.
So I am in charge of the baby quilt for a new little nephew due in about a month. I am torn between making a simple square with sashing. Or a zig zag (or here) quilt. Any thoughts?
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Monday, August 31, 2009

IBOL Packaged

What I had to fit in the boxes. I made a little felt piece to hold some pins and various needles.

The empty and patiently waiting boxes. I was amazed at how much I fit in the boxes. Lots and lots of fabric and sewing notions will soon be making their way east.

I was wrapping up when I saw my birds left from last Christmas. So I stuck one* in each bundle as a little surprise. *(this one was made by a friend and stayed with me.)

The one I had originally thought to send turned into two and then three! I really hope they are received well and can be used. I could fill more boxes but 3 will have to do for this time.
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Friday, August 28, 2009

IBOL--Iraqi Bundles of Love

So I read about this a couple of weeks ago but let the time slip away. So here is my plug for this awesome opportunity for service. I just emailed the man in charge of this project and he sent me these links to give you the details.

You can either email him via a comment on his blog or email me and I'll pass the address along to you. These bundles must be mailed by September 7th at the very latest to arrive in time for him to deliver them.

Here is what he just sent to me:

I added some more to the site recently, on ideas of stuff to send -
like knitting stuff. But really, anything and everything gets put to
use here -- this, after Iraq was under sanctions for so long. Bigger
is definitely better -- bigger pieces of fabric, bigger spools of yarn
(send the whole bolt; don't sent the whole sheep). Green, by the way,
is a favorite color in this culture.

Other ways you can help:

1. Spread the word. This is a pretty rapid-fire project, running
about 6 weeks from start to finish (8 if you count delivery). Which
isn't much. I am trying my best, with the website and the emails and
all that, but it's a bunch. I can sure use the help with the word of
mouth stuff -- emails, blog links, Twitter, Facebook (IBOL has a
page), anything and everything.

OK, I ran out of steam after 1. I'll try to think of more. As long
as stuff is in the USPS as priority mail, not later than 07 Sept., it
should get here in time.

The general information is here: http://ibol.wordpress.com/what-to-send/

Information on how to build a bundle is here:

When all else fails, the frequently asked questions are here:

The Facebook page is here:

Flickr photos are tagged like this:

Honestly, I think the IBOL Kitteh stuff is the funniest part of this
project: http://ibol.wordpress.com/tag/ibol-kitteh/

Green is good. Simple is good. Stripes work, too. Scissors are OK.
Ditto for needles. Fabric is far more likely to be used for clothing
than for quilting, but that's not an absolute. I'm keeping the
mailing address off of the web, as best I can, because after this
project is over, I pack me up and ship me home -- so, bundles sent,
say, in January would just be returned.

And did I mention that bigger is definitely better -- bigger pieces of
fabric, bigger spools of yarn?

Did I miss something? Let me know.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Quilts completed

So it's been a long while since I last updated. I don't seem to be at all able to quilt etc. and actually find time to update a the blog about what has been going on. We took a family vacation to Washingtion state and Canada (Vancouver Island) to visit with my family. Lots of fun and two quilts delivered.
This first quilt is for my Dad. I have been quilting for eight years and haven't made him one yet. So this is it. I chose batiks because he spends his winters in Mexico and I wanted something cheerful and fun. This is also one of the quilts that I made with the Old Red Barn Co. quilt along.
This one is for my mum. She was one of the first to ever receive a quilt from me. A lovely bed quilt. But she needed a smaller throw over the knees type quilt. The requirements: small and light weight but soft and warm and thicker than the cotton quilt but thinner than a duvet. Not a tall order at all :) I knew that I wanted to use Minki dot for the backing and it had to be blue. The top was a little more challenging. Over the years I have sent her many Mary Englebriet journals. So when I saw this fabric I knew that this was the right choice. I also decided to use a double layer of wool batting and tied the quilt (actually my sister tied it for me!) I used satin quilt binding for the extra touch of cuddliness. The end result is great. She loves it.
This little quilt was made in a hurry for a baby shower. While I rarely make baby quilts anymore for shower gifts (just not enough time) I hated to go with nothing home made. I have been hoarding this darling farm fabric for at least 4 years. It was time to send it to a better home. I didn't have any extra batting on hand so I used two layers of cotton flannel for the middle. I love the way it turned out. If I had had more time (I think this took 2 hours to make) I would have added a little more quilting. I hope the wee baby enjoys dragging it around.
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Monday, August 17, 2009

Eight years of scraps

Seriously. I have in these three bins (and a little on the table) scraps from all of the quilting over the past eight years. I thought I was doing well keeping it color sorted in plastic bags in the bins on a shelf. As it turns out these scraps have bred. Well not really but it sure feels like it. Now that I am sorting and organizing I really need to get a handle on all of these scraps. I try not to buy new fabric well at least less than I used to and only for a very specific purpose:0

Any ideas short of throwing them all away?

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Reorganizing the Sewing Chaos


I don't really have anything to say for myself about the state of my sewing and crafting. I create huge piles and have multiple projects going on at the same time. The first 4 photos are of the sewing room pre removal of everything. You don't see that there is also the baby's crib and my daughters bed in this room too. The last 5 photos are of the mess pulled out into the entry way. I didn't think that the fabric looked that overwhelming. But as I have sorted and refolded all of the fabric 1/2 yard and larger I am left with the bits and pieces and all of the odds and ends that accumulate when one sews or crafts.

More photos to follow on the slightly more organized room and new desk (I love this monster).
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Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Crafty Crow pattern

Over at the Crafty Crow you can enter a drawing for a super cute apron pattern. I hope I get this pattern as I have about a 1/2 dozen or so people I want to make aprons for. Good luck.