Friday, July 30, 2010

TNT was like Christmas!!!

Last night was Thursday Night Therapy. Our little group was it's normally small number but it was jam-packed!!

The first to show up was Michelle. No, this picture isn't Michelle but it's a gift she made for me. :o) You might recognize it from her blog banner. Adorable, right?

I met Michelle online and she lives just about 20 minutes from me. She is a VERY busy mom of two adorable little girls so we usually only get to see each other a couple times a year or we bump into each other at a quilt run! But she is a sweetheart and she never comes over empty handed. She also brought over some quilt and craft books she recently got at Amazon and of course, I had to add a few titles to my 'wish list'. Man, we crafters love to spread around the misery of empty pockets, don't we? hehe

Then Neena showed up with her hands full. (By the way, Neena is in real need of updating her blog!!! Four months, Neena? tsk tsk) She just got back from her Stampin' Up! convention in Utah. She brought some of the cards she swapped out with other demonstrators. They swap just the fronts of cards for ideas. She got quite a variety with just about every theme you could imagine. It got me itchin' to make some more cards!!! (She's a bad influence!) lol

Then she gave me these two gifts and my little bunny popped in the picture. Look how happy she is just to be in the picture. lol Neena gave me this pop up trash can which is the perfect gift for me. Every time we have TNT, I put a tupperware bowl on the table for trash and scraps. I was in real need of this baby! And when not in use, it folds up lickity split and takes up almost no room. Which of course, leaves me much more room for paper, fabric and all of the other collections I have! She also gave me that slick ruler in the picture. Can't EVER have too many rulers. (Kind of like quilts, right?) :o)

I'm sitting here like Fred Flintstone, waiting for the whistle to blow so I can yabba-dabba-do and go home for the day!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Finally finished my Baby Nines

I might name this little quilt "Little Blossoms" instead of Baby Nines because of all the little flowers in the snowball blocks. The pattern is called "June Lake 3" but I don't see a lake, do you? :o)

So here it is. All I had to finish was that little loopy border between the little green hst border and the nine patches. It needed something. It was too puckery (I don't think that's a real word but you know what I mean, right?) but it couldn't be too much because there wasn't that much quilting on the rest of the quilt. My sister Isabel suggested it. She's so dang smart. Man, now that I said that in 'print' she's never going to let me live it down. hehe

I think I shared this picture before but I love it because it shows all of the little floral fabrics in this project. I bought it as a kit for a little over twenty dollars.

Here is the loopy border I just did tonight.

And here is a picture of the back of the quilt. It's a sweet soft green with little polka dots that will snuggle a little grand baby someday. "Sigh..."

Boy, it feels good to get that one done. I was so close for so long. I think I will just put a small label on it with my name and the date since I don't have a baby to give it to yet. I could put it to "the unknown baby", sort of like the unknown comic!! LOL

Baby Shower Party Favors

My friend Debbie is throwing a baby shower for her daughter. She asked for some help with party favors. In the old days, I remember little diapers made out of fabric and dipped in wax for nut cups. Much too messy to me. I looked on the ever reliable Internet and saw several flannel or felt diapers for party favors. We hijacked the idea and made these little diapers. The mom-to-be is doing a lavendar butterfly nursery so that was the theme.

I cut 7" squares of flannel and we folded them in half and put a safety pin to hold them together. Then I poked through the legs with my finger to create a little folded bottom so the diapers had a nice shape. They were too funny looking with just the folds and no tuck. I put a dot of Tacky glue to keep the diaper in this shape. We put a small charm on the safety pin to add a little "somethin'-somethin'". :o) We got the charms at Joann's in the cake aisle. I think they're made by Wilton. There were 12 in the package for around $3.00 but we used our coupons.

I printed some cardstock on my home printer to use as a little tag. I used a small label format but instead of printing labels, I printed on white cardstock. That let me do three columns by about twelve rows. Debbie cut the columns apart and then used the oval punch from Stampin' Up! to cut the white cardstock and the oval scallop punch in different colors for the back of the tags. I gave Debbie some homework on Thursday night to punch out the tags, glue them together and make the bows. I have a handy little bow maker tool and she said it went pretty fast. We thought they came out really nice. We'll fill them with a white cupcake paper and then fill them with candy and they'll be a nice little keepsake from the shower.

One of the other sites I looked at had a diaper wreath. My daughter Stephanie has made diaper cakes before but I've never done anything like this. I just followed the picture from the Internet and tied on toys Debbie got at Target. It only took about a half hour I think.

Off to go sew on a quilt. All this baby stuff is keeping me out of the sewing room!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Scalloped borders

Remember that class I took with Darlene Zimmerman a few weeks ago? You can see a few of her samples in this post. Well, I put what I learned to work on my little nine patch quilt. I really love Darlene's ruler and method of doing scallops. It was SO easy. You make single bias strips so they follow the curves very easy and because they are single strips, there is literally no bulk. So easy! (Did I say that already?) lol Geez, if "I" think it's easy, anyone can do it!! :o)
This is a picture of the front....

And this is the back. You just put a small crease in the fabric and fold it over and it looks perfect.

I didn't like the puckering in the fabric in one area of the quilt so before I share a picture of the top, I need to add some more quilting. I took some pictures and called Dr. Isabel (my sister) for some suggestions. I think we came up with a design that would work so I have to find some time to do that. I've got a friend coming over tonight for some help with baby shower favors and I have to go Momma sit this weekend so it might have to wait until next week. Ohhhh, I am so close to a finish, I can't stand it!!!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Finished May in July

Well, I can't really say this block from my Berry Picking BOM took me three months to finish because I didn't even start it until July, but it's finally done! Yay!!! It is one of the bigger ones that are on this project. I got the fabric ready to go for the June block so I'll trace that one tonight. Luckily, it's just a glass of lemonade so I'm hoping I can get it done in just a few days and then onto July, the monster beast of them all. :o) The final block is a basket filled with jelly jars and goodies.

I'm actually surprised I did as well as I did on this BOM. I would be happy to have to top done by the end of August. One month behind (for me) isn't bad at all! Let's see how I do....

And here is the make-up bag I made when my sister was over. This was a fat quarter we both bought but Isabel used different fabric on the bottom of her bag and different ribbon.

After I finished sewing the May block together (above), I started preparing the fabric to trace the July pattern but I was getting tired. I usually trace the pattern and then baste a piece of quality muslin behind the fabric so my thread doesn't show through. Instead I basted the fabric on first. That will make it very hard to see through the lightbox and trace the design so I will have to rip it out. I knew I didn't have it in me last night so I turned out the light and went out in the living room and watched a little TV while stitching down the scallop binding on my little quilt. You know, sometimes you have to give in and when I start making mistakes, that's when it's time! I got two sides of the binding stitched down when the eyes started to get very heavy. It was hard to stop because it's looking so cute, if I do say so myself. :o) But I had to get to bed so I wasn't a complete zombie this morning.
I marked the top of that little quilt all up with a blue water soluble marker when trying to decide what other quilting design to do before doing the scallop border. Once I'm done with the stitching, I'll lay it out and see what else it needs. My sis suggested stitching in the ditch in a section I missed so I'll do that and then see if it tells me it's finished. My friend Carolyn says her quilts talk to her but mine seem to be VERY tight lipped. hehe

Fun, busy weekend

I picked my sister up from the train station on Friday night and it seemed we were going, going, going until she went home on Sunday morning. We went to a quilt shop first thing in the morning and got some yummy Lakehouse fabrics as well as a few cute FQ's. Went to visit my SIL who broke her arm from falling off her horse. Thank goodness she is okay and all that happened was a broken arm! Dropped my husband off at the Indian casino and found another quilt shop to go to. Got home and made a make-up bag together with some new fabric we bought (we would have used some in my stash but I hardly have any!!!!!!!!!!!!!!). LOL We finally had to get off our feet so we went and sat on the couch and did a little stitching. I worked on this.........and I'm happy to say I'm almost done. Only one little cherry and raspberry to finish.

And Isabel worked on this. This is her quilt from the Sharyn Craig class we took a couple of years ago. Mine is made from civil war reproductions and hers is out of 30's. This is an older picture. Her binding is all sewed down but she is in the process of adding buttons to the intersections. It is super cute in person.

She quilted it with a stitch in the ditch and a pretty braid pattern on the border.

And that was all on Saturday!!!!!!!!! Needless to say, I took it easy on Sunday just doing laundry and worked on my baby nine patch/snowball quilt that I shared here. I used my scallop gadget and the information I learned in the Darlene Zimmerman class and got a pretty scallop border on my little quilt. I pinned the binding down and have to stitch it but I want to get my BOM done first. Hopefully, I'll be able to share a picture with you later this week.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Summer, bags and mom

Whew! Summer finally arrived in So. California in full force. All those people who were complaining about our overcast June and July asking where the sun was....well, it's here!!! Why couldn't they just be happy with 74 degree days? I WAS!!! lol It's supposed to be high 90's today in Fullerton. Other areas are supposed to be much hotter. This picture was my temperature gage at 7:59 a.m. It's not going to be pretty people! Gee, I guess I better stop and get gas on the way home. LOL
At TNT (Thursday Night Therapy), I made two more make-up bags. I posted about the pattern here. I really like the pattern. It's so easy to make and I love that it only takes small pieces of fabric. My buddy Neena is heading to the Stampin' Up! convention in Utah on Tuesday. She has a secret pal and needed some things for her. I was going to 'show her' how to make this bag but she had lots of paper cutting and cards to make for swapping so I just made it. This is some of the fabric she purchased on the So. Cal Quilter's Run a few weeks ago.

I had enough left over from the strips I cut to make two bags. This is the second bag and added twill tape as an accent. I might add a button or something on the ribbon but it was late last night when the girls left so I'll check my button stash tonight.

I took my sister Isabel to San Diego on Monday and we had a visit with our mama. My sis stayed to help take care of mom and to spend some time with her. My mom used to go to Isabel's house a couple of times a year during her vacations from work but due to her health, mom can't travel anymore. She pretty much stays home with a caregiver during the day. It makes us sad but we're trying to get there as often as we can to spend as much time as possible with her. It's hard when you are "working girls". It is sad but it's a reality. We can't do anything about getting older. I realize that with my mom and every morning when I look in the mirror!

I took this picture when we were sitting at the table doing hand work together. It makes me teary eyed when I look at it. Mom was showing Isabel some embroidery patterns she had for "her next dishtowel".

My mom is 82. My dad will be gone five years next month. Boy, I'm feeling pretty melancholy today.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Class with Darlene Zimmerman

The Orange County Guild holds a quilter's camp every other year to alternate with our quilt show. My sister and I took a class called Finishing School by Darlene Zimmerman. It focused on edges from her book The Quilter's Edge. It was an excellent class and both me and my sister feel like we will add scallop borders, flanges and wavy borders to quilts now.

This is a sample of her bunny ears scallop border.

Darlene was helping Isabel with the bias binding on the scallop border. She sure made it easy!

One of the many quilts Darlene brought with her. Adorable!

And here's Darlene, yeah, that's it.....her top pupil. LOL

Gotta go finish sewing before I get in more trouble. :o)

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

A few more finishes

Last night, I made a small set of curtain panels out of that same mushroom fabric I used for the make-up bag for my daughter, Kelley. She has a bathroom that faces a walkway and said she was concerned for her privacy when the window is open. These little panels should do the trick. I whipped them up pretty quick using the serger to attach the red strips and sewing a little casing with my regular machine.

Then, I had this UFO sitting in a basket in my sewing room. I looked on my blog to see if I posted about it before and I had. Last year!!! Here. Honestly, how do these projects sit so long without finishing themselves before I get back to them? How??? lol
It's a caddy/mat for your machine to give you storage pockets when you have limited space.....or if you just want something cute to look at while you're sewing! Part of it sits under the machine, but it's also a tote so you can haul your project, mat and some supplies in it. Pretty clever, huh?

The pattern is called "Sewing Machine Mat and Caddy" by Sheila Cautillo and it was put out by a local quilt shop, Flying Geese Fabric, Inc. They designed it using the Sandcastle fabric on the outside and the pretty fabric on the inside but I flipped it around. Why let the pretty lining hide under your sewing machine? This fabric has been in my stash for a while. I loved the butter yellow with the red and black designs but didn't know what to do with it. I thought this was a good project for the bigger design.
The little trash tote is attached with Velcro and the pincushion is just stuffed with poly fiber fill and stitched onto the bag. There is also a pocket for a ruler or other supplies behind the other pockets. My Sandcastle got stained a few years ago when we had a flood but I used it for this project anyway. The stained parts are inside the bag and on this pocket.

Okay, what else can I work on??? Let me at it. I'm on a roll! lol

Monday, July 5, 2010

A little sewin'

Last weekend on the quilt run, I bought some of this little mushroom fabric for my oldest daughter, Kelley. It's called Critter Jamboree by Barb somebody for Clothworks. I can't read the lady's last name on the fabric. Kelley's lovin' red and white polka dot mushrooms lately. So much in fact that she decorated her bathroom with them and I'll use whatever fabric is leftover from these bags for some little panels for her window.

Anyway, I used the fabric to make her (and me) a make-up bag. I got an easy pattern, also on the quilt run, called Little Glam Bag from Pink Sand Beach Designs. It was pretty easy to make and they offer all kinds of ways to piece them together.

The green dot was in my middle daughter's scrap bag and the gingham was in my stash. It worked perfect for the lining. And I had some little 'dingle balls' that Kelley liked for the trim. I used ribbon for my bag.

I might make a few more of these. Don't you like smaller projects to get you by in between massive quilt projects?

I might put more bags on the back burner for a while though. I need to do some of my stitchery bom. Man, I already got the one for July and I haven't even finished May yet. Geesh!

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Happy 4th of July!

I hope you are having a wonderful time celebrating this wonderful country that we live in! There are things that could be better but that just gives us room for improvement.

My boss gave me these cute little mums last week. They look like little explosions, just like fireworks. So festive and cute!
However you are celebrating today, I hope you have a wonderful holiday weekend.