Monday 1 December 2014

Stitching, Hail, Girl 18, OPAM

Hi everyone,

Gosh,  November has been a crazy, busy month here at the cottage.  There has been a LOT of stitching happening here but it's all good...stitching makes me happy.

Our Sunday Stitchers Christmas party was yesterday.  The name I drew for Secret Santa was Teresa who has a blog here.   Teresa loves gingies and she loves French General fabric, so I stitched this super cute design by the lovely Michelle who blogs here.   I put a few goodies inside...more FG fabric, a vanilla candle, a cute little Daiso cherry tape dispenser, a gingerbread cookie, and a notebook.   The Christmas party was great fun and I will show you my gorgeous present and tell you the story behind it in my next post.

Some of us in the SS group have been working on a row by row quilt.  It's been a paper bag swap type of event where we are given a theme each month to make a row for another lady's quilt.  We have not been allowed to show anything until now...the Christmas party was our big reveal.


                                            Susan, Maree, Debbie, De.

                                          Debbie, De,  Marilyn, Noela.  We had so many ladies in front of us
                       taking photos, that none of us knew where to look LOL.

I rarely show my face here, but this picture is especially for  Mel.  Earlier this year, Mel was my partner for another swap and she included this very special stitchery for me of a Labrador with a quilt to always remind me of the naughty one that wouldn't stay off the bed. I put the stitchery on my fridge so I will see it every day.  The instructions for the very last row that we were to make ourselves had to include stitchery.  So, I traced the special stitchery from Mel to include on my quilt (it's near my right hand).  The rest of the stitchery says "Happiness is a Sweet Little Cottage By the Sea".  I will show a better picture later but I hope you can see "Z" there, dear Mel.

Four of us also joined in the "haveyourselfaquiltylittlechristmas" stitchalong that has been happening on Instagram.  L-R:  De, Debbie, Teresa, Jeanette.  The hostess is Lori Holt from beeinmybonnet and some of the blocks are from her book Quilty Fun. We all managed to get our flimsys ready in time for show and tell at the party.  This has been great fun sewing together with so many ladies from all over the world....together.

Somehow, I also managed to make 20 cute little thread spool ornaments to give as gifts at the party too.  This the spool pattern is also from the book "Quilty Fun".

I still have more pictures to show of more things I sewed in between all this, but they will keep till next time.   I am expecting girl 18 to arrive 22nd of December.  She is a yellow lab/golden retriever mix and she is a working coming when we meet at last!!

Last....did you hear about the hail? In 7 1/2 years, I've only ever had pea size hail at this house, but last week, it seemed like rocks were falling from the sky. The noise on the iron roof was deafening but I am thankful my only loss was my tomato plants...I can start over easily enough.  So many others had it much worse that day.


This palm frond is well latched onto the power lines...until who knows when!?  That's all for now,  I will show my gorgeous present from Jeanette and the rest of the sewing soon. xx debbie

Saturday 8 November 2014

FNWF, Girl 17

Hi everyone,

Did you get a chance to join in with FNWF?  It was a stitchy day at here at the cottage  all day Friday with a visit from my dear friend De.  De worked on some hand stitching while I worked on machine applique all day. I have 11 little baby items to do (including five dinosaurs) and I finally finished the last one. 

I've joined in the fun on Instagram with  Lori  from beeinmybonnet.  She is having a Christmas  quilty fun quiltalong.  There are 3 blocks out so far, so it's not too late to catch up if you would like to join in too.  This is the first block, a gingerbread house.

This is my second block,  I think it is called fresh cut tree. Who knew I would ever be able to use olive green fabric with pastel spots?!  This is why I hoard just never know!  The next block is a mug of cocoa but I haven't gotten that far yet.  Time for me to do some other work now.

My dear Girl 17 left me two weeks ago today.

She is one of those souls that all you have to do is look at her and you instantly feel a sense of calm.

Girl 17 will always be remembered as my hoarder. She kept all of her toys close.  I've been told she has been adopted by a lovely family for her forever home.  See the lion king toy in the foreground? It is no longer with us. My neighbour's old cattle dog visits me and she ate it :(

My last photo of her. She heard me talking to the lady on the phone about the plans for her and this is how I found her. *cry*   Happy life, my dear Girl 17!   xx debbie

Monday 13 October 2014

How I Pin a Quilt

Hi everyone,

This week sure has flown by. I've been sewing pretty much non stop to finish more requests for my customer before her new baby arrives.
I finished the "Where the Wild Things Are" quilt I've shown in my previous posts and gave it to her last Saturday.  Here is the last picture of it all wrapped up and ready for delivery.  I just love the grey and white bias binding.  She was very happy with it too.
When I gave her that quilt, she asked if I could please hurry and make the other quilt for her little girl along with two matching cushions with invisible zippers.  I gave her an estimate of two weeks, but she really wanted me to try for ONE week.  Most of these squares were already cut, but she asked me to cut some of them over for fussy cutting.  I came home that Saturday morning and worked pretty much non stop the rest of the week.  Here is the quilt top for the second quilt laid out ready for pin basting.  This is a queen size bed.
When I was younger, I used to crawl around on my knees and pin huge quilts on the floor.
 For health reasons, I have come up with a different plan.  If the quilt will fit on my deck table, I pin it there. In this case, the quilt is too large for that, so I have done it this way for years. 
 First, stretch the top bed sheet as tight as it will go to give a flat surface. Iron the quilt backing carefully and smooth it out flat on the bed. Layer the quilt in the usual manner.  Next, slide the rotary cutting mat under the quilt backing while supporting the quilt sandwich with your fingers.

I pin over the mat, then slide the mat to the next section while supporting the layers with my fingers.  My mat is 35 "/ 90cm long, so I only need to move it a few times.

It is still a bit harder on the body, but if you don't have a large table available, it is better than crawling around on your knees :)
Pinning took maybe half an hour, then on to the fun part...quilting!
Then the next fun part...the binding is on, I am trimming the backing for the next step of hand sewing the binding to the back.

Here is the quilt all finished. My customer has provided all fabrics as she has chosen them for having special meaning to her family.
Here is a look at the quilting on the back.  No tucks anywhere :) This is 100% cotton batting and fabrics, so this quilt will have beautiful texture after she washes it.
Wrapped in tissue paper and tied with a pretty bow.
Plus a matching cushion for each quilt, both with invisible zips.  I managed all that from Saturday to Saturday and gave them to her yesterday (Sunday).  Phew!!! What a week :)  but I am happy that she is happy.  xx debbie