Friday, March 3, 2017

Growing Up QAL - February

My February block of the Growing Up QAL is completed. A traditional pieced block using Batik fabric. I just love the colors and designs of Batik fabric!

I'm not a fan of HST but most traditional blocks have them. Like Alida, I cut my fabric pieces larger then after sewing them up I cut the HST down to the size I need.

There was a bonus block included with the instructions and I hope to finish that one this afternoon...lots of HST (like 20) in that block!

Thanks for an awesome block Alida and I'm looking forward to receiving the instructions for the March project.


See you next time.

Quilt On!
Live On!

Thursday, March 2, 2017

One Monthly Goal - March

I've joined in on the fun at Elm Street Quilts by participating in the One Monthly Goal challenge. And yes there are prizes drawn randomly each month.

This is my first month as a participant and I plan to complete this cute row that I bought in 2015 while visiting quilt stores in Tulsa during the summer Row By Row event.  Maybe I can finally get some of these row's completed. The theme that year was water...and they are so very cute!




 I bought the fabric kits so I have no excuse! A-sewing I must go!


Quilt On!
Live On!



Friday, February 3, 2017

UFO Challenge

For the second year now two of my sisters and I have participated in our own UFO challenge. We each pick 15 items (sewing and/or non-sewing), number the items and create our individual lists. We start our UFO challenge at the beginning of February, after the busyness of the new year. Near the end of January we email our lists to one another and our husbands take turns picking a number at the end of each month. No prizes are awarded. Just the notion of a project completed is reward enough.

Do we accomplish completion status every month? Of course not! This isn't a pressure thing we put on one another or a race. In reality LIFE happens every day and we are all busy with our own families and jobs, but We. Are. Trying!

Last year I reached completion status on four items...maybe it was three. But that's three or four less UFO's I have in my stack. How many of you have Row By Row patterns and kits from Quilt Stores you've visited during the summer while traveling or even from your LQS? I have two years worth so this year I've added 2015 Row By Row kits to my UFO Challenge list.

And....I just finished my February pick and note...it's only February 3rd! I wasn't too keen on this pick based on the pattern picture but after I completed it, I just love it! This Row By Row kit is from Quilt Styles in Sapulpa, Oklahoma.


Of course....lots of applique as it seems most of these kits are. But that's okay...I think they're fabulous!


The water pump was quite detailed. I used the triple stitch on my sewing machine to get nice dark detail lines and a blanket stitch around the edges. 


I laughed to myself because water in the art world is mostly blue but as we all know water is clear, and I realize you can't see clear! It was just something that hit my brain as I was appliqueing this water drop. Water glistens so I used metallic thread around the water drop.


And the finished row... it's really hard to see the details, hence the above photos. I've just about decided to make this one a wall hanging instead of including it in a quilt.  This is the only vertical row I have for the 2015 kits and it would end up on the back. I believe, as a wall hanging, it'll go well with my antique looking guest bathroom.  


Thanks for visiting.

Live On!
Quilt On!


Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Growing Up QAL - January

This year I'm joining in the fun with Alida (TweLoQ) Designs 2017 Quilt- Along. We will be exploring 12 different piecing techniques throughout the year.

Our deadline to complete Block 1 (Silhouette Applique) is February 5th. Of course, as always, I'm so near the deadline. BUT....I did it...and a few days to spare....how about that!

Here is my Block 1. Alida provided excellent instructions and the pattern. Thanks Alida for all the time you've put into this QAL.


It's hard to see in the above photo but I used sparkly fabric for the flower silhouette and metallic thread for the applique stitches.



 It worked well and the flower stands out nicely against the red background. 

February we will be doing a traditional pieced block and March we will tackle a curved pieced block. 

See you next time!
Live On!
Quilt On!





Thursday, January 5, 2017

Christmas Sewing Revealed

Now that Christmas is over....the day, not the meaning....I can reveal the Christmas sewing gifts I made for family and friends. Did I start earlier this year sewing for Christmas?...Nah...I started in October. Will I start sewing earlier for Christmas 2017? There's always hope and wishful thinking!

I like to make "thinking of you" items for my sisters, sister-in-laws and female friends. Last year I made scarves and I included knit gloves and a cookbook from a local church.

This year I made the ever so popular microwave bowl cozy...two designs...one with rounded edges and the other square. I made a total of 16 each.






Then I made these cute potholders designed as an apron and then one designed as a pie.  I think both came out quite well.  I made 16 of each. I was like an assembly line, but the only one on the line!




I did change up the pie potholder...made it bigger and used tucked prairie points for the crust.





 I found the ideas in this oh so cute book. 






Of course I made quilts. Four of them! I used the same pattern on all 4 so that I could quickly sew up the blocks. Each quilt had 35 blocks so I made a total of 140 blocks and kept them separated into piles with the recipients name attached. The pattern is Square Dance from a Missouri Star Quilt Company tutorial  It sews up fairly quick.

This one was for my daughter's special friend Josh. It's really challenging at times to make a masculine looking quilt.


After making Josh's quilt I realized the quilt was bigger than what I wanted and it took longer to sew together, especially since I had a deadline. I decided to make the remaining 3 quilts a  5 x 5 square quilt.  That left me with 10 orphan blocks per quilt but oh well I could use them later. Little did I know that God had plans for those blocks.

Here are the other three quilts for my niece and two nephews.....







Do you see anything different about these quilts? Does the piecing look any different? I pieced them using my serger. I love my serger and love experimenting with different ways to use it but that's a post for a another time.



My sweet 94 year old mother-in-law, Inez, who resides in a nursing home wanted to give gifts to her nurses and other care givers (a total of 9) and 3 lady friend residents. I offered to take on the task of coming up with 12 unique gifts that Inez would be happy to give. I could have easily purchased gift cards but I wanted the gifts to be special and personal for these very important people who are involved in Inez's daily care and life.  I thought hard on gift ideas for a couple of days (circa December 10th) while finishing up the 4 quilts...and stressing some about possibly taking on too much in the short time I had before heading south for the Christmas festivities. The Pinterest search began!

Firstly, I found a cute lunch bag with a great tutorial over at the Pink Penguin blog. The blogging community is such a generous and great source of idea sharing and information! Since I strive to be a serger diva, I used my serger for sewing a good portion of the bag! Here is my version using duck cloth. I made 9 in different colors and combinations.



I ran out of time at home and ended up inserting the draw strings on the ride South.  I found some fairly inexpensive plastic boxes with lids and filled them with a bottle of lotion, shower gel and a colorful scrounge, hence "Spa in a Box", which I inserted into the totes. Not a shabby gift and much better than an impersonal gift card.

Then I made 12 of these candy sleighs for Inez to give out to her visitors and other staff members. She loved them! I did too and so did everyone else...I should have made more! They were really easy to make and it took about an hour to do all 12.  I found the tutorial here. (Yet another idea sharing blog)





Now on to God's plan for the orphan blocks....

I had thought heavily about the 3 resident friends and what I could do! I finally cleared my mind and God entered with the idea of using the 10 orphan blocks from each of the 3 quilts I made for my niece and nephews. I thought some more...what could a nursing home resident use...I thought some more and the idea of wheelchair quilts entered my mind.  Another Pinterest search later and I was back at the sewing machine. I found the wheelchair quilt idea here.  They are created using 11 blocks each so I just needed to made one more block for each quilt. 


At first I added sashing between each block and I felt that was a little long for someone sitting in a wheelchair. But I left it and figured the top could be rolled back,




I thought the quilts could be wider than what the instructions suggested so I only put the sashing on the side of each block for these two and they were a couple inches shorter too.  I was much more satisfied with width and length after these design changes.  I used flannel for the back as was suggested and didn't use batting in order to make them more of a lightweight throw that could be easily tucked under a body part. 

The 3 resident friends loved them and brought tears to the eyes of all involved!

Well...that's it! I accomplished my sewing tasks and stayed sane at the same time. It was a joy giving all the handmade gifts I created this year. 

Quilt On!
Live On!



Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Art with Fabric Blog Hop

Yay! It's my day to show my Fabric Artwork on the Art with Fabric Blog Hop!



I've had sew much fun creating my fabric wall hanging. Being a part of this Hop has allowed me to take a sabbatical from my comfort zone, use my imagination and create a textile piece that I won't mind displaying in my home. Shouts of THANKS go out to Alida from Tweety Loves Quilting for all the time she's put into organizing this Blog Hop.

When Alida first contacted me about participating I was very hesitant. I knew very little about conventional art, fine art or works by artist in current or past times. I guess you can say I was/am  "art challenged". How was I going to create a textile piece based on a work of art (painting, sculpture, drawing, architecture, etc).  Yes...I knew about Michael Angelo and was familiar with other old era artists but that was as far as my art knowledge went and for that matter it didn't go very deep. So after the second email I received from Alida I thought...okay...before I commit let me see if I can be inspired by any artist out there.  I found a museum website that listed artists from different eras in alphabetical order and photos of their work.  I started clicking randomly on artist names, viewing their works and I found A LOT that did not inspire me!  The works were beautiful but nothing was happening on the creative side of my brain. When I did find my inspirational artist,  I knew it immediately! I WAS INSPIRED! His work spoke to me like no other artist did!

My inspirational artist was...



His works consist of scenes that include people interacting with nature, animals and landscapes.

The paintings that inspired my fabric artwork were:

The Dream

and The Poultry Yard


I basically designed my piece as I was creating it. I knew I wanted a rooster inspired from The Poultry Yard and I wanted flowers and greenery inspired from The Dream. I went with those thoughts and made changes here and there during the creating process. 

I found this Rooster on EQ7 and thought it would look great as an appliqué. 



I love love love Batik fabrics and knew they would be perfect for my Rooster. I raided my Batik stash and came up with a nice assortment. 

What would work well with a poultry appliqué? Why burlap of course! I wasn't yet sure how a burlap backed rooster would be placed on a piece of background fabric that I hadn't auditioned yet, but I liked the combination and went with it.


I machine appliquéd the rooster body onto a lined burlap piece.


I have a fun pressor foot that I love using...It's a Loop/Fringe foot made by Baby Lock. 


Here's a great tutorial on using the foot....because there is an easy process to getting the look you want. (Believe me when I say it's an easy process)

It gives any project a fantastic look and texture!
I used machine embroidery thread to make the fringe in order to give the Rooster tail a little shine. 


When I made the rooster/burlap combination I didn't know exactly how I was going to use it in my overall wall hanging design.  I placed it on my background fabric that I'd finally chosen and a light bulb went off! Oh my...it looks like a Moon...It looks like a rooster against a moon backdrop! It looks like a rooster walking on a stone wall against a moon backdrop! A name for my project promptly came to my head!



The next step was to design the garden.  I loved the flowers depicted in the painting The Dream and gained the inspiration I needed to create my moonlit garden. 


I appliquéd and stitched detail into my garden flowers and greenery. 

And here you have it.... my completed textile artwork...

"Rooster Crowing in the Moonlit Garden"



I took advantage of my real life inspiration and one hen even posed during the photo op!


I hope you've been inspired by my creation. Continue to be inspired by visiting the other participants that are posting today and though out the week. 


Monday, May 9th, 2016

Tuesday, May 10th, 2016

Wednesday, May 11th, 2016

Thursday, May 12th, 2016

Friday, May 13th, 2016



Thanks for stopping by and have a fun week of being inspired.

Live On!
Quilt On!

Monday, May 2, 2016

Art with Fabric Blog Hop

I'm sew excited about participating in the Art with Fabric Blog Hop hosted by Alida at  Tweety Loves Quilting. She has a week long line-up in place beginning Monday, May 9th.


Participants were asked to create textile artwork inspired by a piece of art...painting, sculpture, drawing, etc. I was hesitant at first because 1) I had to come out of my comfort zone and design something different; 2) I'm not an artist; 3) I no nothing about fine art.

After a few days of thinking about it and viewing artwork on the internet I found an artist who's works really spoke to me. Creative ideas immediately started flowing through my head and I decided to participate in the hop. I'm so glad I did because I've had such fun creating my project! And you know,  it's not all that different than what I really like to do and it allowed me to come out of my comfort zone during the creative process.

Visit Tweety Loves Quilting next Monday, May 9th to start the hop and I'm sure you'll be inspired too. My day to present is May 10th. Come back to see my textile artwork and who the artist was that inspired me.

Here is a preview of my artwork:



Hope you come back next Tuesday, May 10th to view the completed piece.

Quilt On!
Live On!