Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Bloggers Block of the Month # 4

The pattern for Block Number 4 of the Bloggers Block of the Month came out today. I like this block very much and the pattern can be found HERE On Pat Sloan's Blog.

I barely got Block #3 done before Block #4 came out! But, I had some time for sewing and so I've already done #4.

BLOCK NUMBER 4:



Here are all four blocks so far:

Monday, December 26, 2011

Bloggers Block of the Month, Block Three

Its so good to reclaim my sewing room, even though there are still some stray Christmas things in there. I bet I'm not the only one whose sewing area turns in to a present wrapping and stashing area this time of year!

Here is my Bloggers Block of the Month, Number Three, which will be part of a Christmas quilt when finished.

This third block is called "SPLIT STAR"

Turned two different ways!




Go HERE to Canton Village Quilt Works for more information about this Block of the Month.

Friday, December 23, 2011

The Pillows



These pillows and pillowcases are ready to be given as gifts for Christmas. I think its important that gifts be something useful and I think everybody can use an extra pillow. Its also nice when gifts are personal and each of these is different and hopefully will be something that fits the personality of the person receiving them.

Another great way to make these useful is to use them as a gift bag. This idea came from Freda of IMPERA MAGNA. The pillowcases go together so quickly, you still have time to whip one or two up!

As for me.... I've called off any more sewing until after Christmas!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Another Pillowcase



This fabric line is called "Summer House" and therefore it is perfect for my summer loving daughter.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Bed Bugs

I made this pillowcase for my four year old grandson. The fabric is called Backyard Safari. I was looking for some different fabric other than Thomas the Train or Spiderman, since I've made him several things from those kinds of fabric in the past.

I love this pillowcase tutorial found HERE at Twiddletails!




I have three more pillowcases to made for Christmas.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

The Last Quilt of The Year

Today I finished the binding and even put on the label on Bluberri Breezes. This will be the last quilt finish during the year 2011 for me. I have other quilts in progress, but don't foresee that I will be able to finish them.





I am looking forward to working on my remaining quilts in progress as time allows during the remainder of November and during the month of December. I also have a few more pillow cases left to make before Christmas.

I am already thinking about the quilts I will make in 2012!!!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Bloggers Block of The Month - Block Two

The colors in the picture aren't true to the actual block, but when you are using a phone camera and low light, this is as good as it gets!

I think by next Christmas of 2012, I will have a cute Christmas Quilt done.



Here is the Block in progress. I am printing out the instructions for each block, punching holes in the edge and keeping them in a notebook.

Friday, November 4, 2011

The Last Corner of Blueberri Breezes

After two weeks of sporadic free motion quilting, last night I reached THE LAST CORNER AND THE LAST PIN OF BLUEBERRI BREEZES!




If I can get a few minutes to make and sew on the binding, doing the hand sewing on the back will make a great project to work on while I am away from home at night helping with my mother. I hope to show the TOTALLY finished quilt next week.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Fall 2011 Bloggers Quilt Festival

Its time for the Fall 2011 Bloggers Quilt Festival at AMY'S CREATIVE SIDE.

The quilt I want to enter in the festival is my red and white double nine patch quilt that I named "Razzle Dazzle".This quilt is named Razzle Dazzle because the colors are our favorite team, N. C. State's colors. The name comes from what my husband yells when NC State does a trick play or a good play. You know when you hear him yell "Razzle Dazzle", that something good has happened. Its too bad that this year I haven't heard that yell...at...all...

Anyway, I love this picture of the quilt taken with the cotton field in the background.



And hanging on the clothesline:



If you would like to see lots of beautiful quilts be sure to visit Amy's Creative side during the Fall 2011 Bloggers Quilt Festival.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

WIP Wednesday

Its WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced. Here's what I've been working on in the sewing room.

1. The first block in the Bloggers' Block of the Month (BOM). Since this BOM lasts a year and will finish up next year right before Christmas... and I've been wanting to make a Christmas quilt, I decided to make the BOM's from Christmas fabric.

These are some fabrics I used for the first block.



The first block



2. The Jacob's Ladder Quilt Along. I've finished 16 blocks so far.





3. Blueberri Breezes. I pin basted the quilt sandwich and started free motion quilting it.



Monday, October 17, 2011

One More Star for a Soldier



I was able to make another star for the Fallen Soldier's Quilt. For more information see my previous post.

I think I'll mail the three I've made this weekend today and then try to make a few more before the deadline.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Stars for a Soldier



If you would like to make one or more Star Blocks to help with the construction of quilts to be made in memory of a fallen soldier, CLICK HERE for more information.

I have been trying to find some appropriate fabric and then I looked into an envelope of fabric sent to me by a blog reader (Thanks Coleen!) and was so excited to find this "Firecracker" fabric by Connecting Threads. It was right up under my nose the whole time.

The blocks can be made in either 8 1/2 or 12 1/2 inch size. The larger block above is the same block that I made a quilt from using denim and plaids several years ago. The block is called Party Hats and the pattern can be found HERE.
Here's the quilt I made using this block.



My thanks go to Freda of THE ADVENTURES OF THE EMPRESS OF THE UNIVERSE who has made several blocks for this cause and has more information HERE.

I hope to make a couple more blocks this afternoon after returning from visiting my mother in the hospital. :o)

Friday, October 14, 2011

One Day at a Time

Well, its been a topsy turvy week!

Update on Mama: Her Nephrologist made the decision that she does need to go on dialysis and so today the surgery to insert the Portacath will be done. I'm not sure how much longer she will be in the hospital, but I suspect at least 2 or 3 more days. As much as I dread this new burden for her, I realize that it is a blessing that dialysis exists to help her live a much longer life. So, "it is what it is!".

Last weekend I started 3 mug rugs for gifts. My thoughts were that these would be small portable projects for sewing down the back of the binding, while waiting at the hospital this week. After quilting them and sewing on the binding, these 3 fit into a gallon zipper bag along with a spool of thread, small scissors and a couple of pins. So far I haven't done any of the sewing on the back, but I may today while Mama is in surgery.



I couldn't resist showing you just a couple more pictures of "Razzle Dazzle". I was finally able to download pictures to my computer. Sometimes I think I should have named this quilt "Troublemaker". When trying to take pictures of it, we broke one clothesline due to the wind and here I am fighting with it.



Miraculously, the wind completely stopped for about 2 seconds and I got one picture of it being still!



Ok, I promise that I won't show you any more pictures of this quilt! In my defense, I just don't finish that many bed size quilts, so I need to make the most of it.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Bedazzled

Razzle Dazzle



I guess its appropriate for a cotton quilt to have a photo shoot in front of a cotton field. Kind of like getting back to its roots.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Jacob's Ladder Continues

My ironing board cover shows the wear of pressing many quilt blocks! Here are some parts of three Jacob's Ladder blocks in progress.



A few more blocks finished.



I'm really making use of some fabric that are either truly vintage or have a vintage look.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Razzle Dazzle Quilting Progress

After setting up my sewing area for quilting I got down to the business of Free Motion Quilting "Razzle Dazzle". I cleaned the machine last weekend. I filled several bobbins. I set up the card table to the left of my chair. The needle was new, since I had broken the old one a couple of days ago. The quilt was pin basted.

So, I was off to the quilting races!

Here's one corner of the quilt.



I finished about two thirds of the quilting and will work on it for an hour or two each night this week. I hope to bind it and post the finished quilt soon.

Friday, September 30, 2011

The Mysterious Quarter Inch Seam



Achieving the perfect quarter inch seam has been haunting me since my high school home economics sewing class days.

I've tried many of the tips offered for the perfect quarter inch seam. On my old Singer the presser foot was the width of a quarter inch. I put down a piece of masking tape at the quarter inch mark. On my new Brother I use a quarter inch piecing foot.

But, even though I made sure the quarter inch was accurate, the quilt blocks never really came out the exact size they were supposed to be.

I have finally figured out this mystery....

Are you ready for the mystery to be revealed?

Here it is:

When piecing quilt blocks the size of the seam must be LESS THAN A QUARTER INCH! Its a "Scant quarter inch"! The width of the thread line, the width of the crease made when pressing, and whether or not the pieces are rotary cut or cut from templates, all go into the equation.

When I first got my quarter inch piecing foot, I thought my quilt blocks would magically all be precisely perfect. NOT!!! If I sew my seams butted up to the guide on the quarter inch foot, the blocks will be TOO small. I must sew a couple of hairs away from the guide. When I do this on a consistent basis the blocks come out the right size.

Now, some machines allow you to move the needle position a hair at a time until you get it right where you want it for that perfect quarter inch seam. My Brother machine only allows this for certain stitches, but doesn't do it for a straight seam. At least I haven't figured out how to, if it has that feature.

The bottom line is that you have to measure, measure, measure, and adjust the point that works on your machine, until your block is the right size. Your quarter inch seam may be slightly different than your friend's quarter inch seam. You have to know your own quarter inch seam.

Another point is that some blocks are easier to achieve accuracy with than others.

Sewing this block drove me crazy! The smaller the pieces the harder it is to obtain accuracy. Hardly any of these blocks were exactly the right size and they certainly didn't lay flat. I love the quilt, but just don't look too closely at how the seams match up!



Sewing these blocks is a joy! Almost every block measures 9 1/2 inches and they lay flat.




I've come to the conclusion that every time I start a new block design, I must measure the units of the block and the finished block to figure out where the seam line should be to make that particular block the right size.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

In My Sewing Room - Thursday

This is my sewing chair. We bought it at a "junque" store. Rescued it would be a better description. This particular store has a tiny building with a big shelter and there is more furniture outside than in. This chair was not even under the shelter. It was sitting outside in the weather.

Its perfect for my sewing chair. I put the rug underneath it because I was scratching the wood floors.



I like the red toile fabric seat. I think someone covered the seat with the fabric and then painted the wood black with a distressed look.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

WIP Wednesday

Today is WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.I have been working on two of my WIPs this week.

The Jacob's Ladder Quilt Along. Go HERE FOR MORE INFORMATION ON THIS QUILT ALONG. I am making this quilt from fabrics I have on hand and am trying to give it a masculine, antique quilt feel. My inspiration is from this quilt found on the Quilting With the Past Blog FOUND HERE. I fell in love with Lucy's quilt and realized that I have lots of older similar fabrics. This quilt will be for my son, Jacob.



Razzle Dazzle:

This quilt has taken over my life which is what happens when you really make up your mind that you are going to finish a certain quilt.

After work this week I am pin basting it in preparation for machine quilting this weekend. I am using Freda's table top pin basting tutorial FOUND HERE. I have worked so hard to get it basted, even enlisting the help of the hubster! This method's positive points are that you don't have to crawl around on the floor and you don't have to find an unoccupied floor big enough to work on. But, no matter how you go about pin basting a quilt, its a J..O..B..!






No other progress on my other WIPs that I can post, but they are growing in my mind!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

In My Sewing Room - Tuesday

Good Morning!

Here are a few things that make my sewing room cozy for me.

Some Bible verses taped on the wall directly in front of the sewing machine. Lately I have looked up the Sunday readings for the upcoming week and then I write down some that have special meaning for me on index cards. That way I can keep them on my mind all week, which helps me to be ready for church on the following Sunday. This is better than just hearing them in church and then promptly forgetting about it.



A few pictures of some loved ones. These are of my Jacob and my Lori when they were small, along with a special cross stitched Bible verse that I received in a blog swap box.



A cork board with more pictures of loved ones and some other special things.



Hanging on this rack is a purple scarf my daughter crocheted for my birthday one year. I will always treasure it.



These things help to make my sewing room one of my favorite places!