Monday, January 29, 2018

Monday Sewing

Now that I have my design wall back I am enjoying a changing view as I place different blocks and projects on it just for the pure enjoyment of seeing color and think about ideas.

The mini quilt top I started last year, it needs to be quilted and bound.  The spool quilt I also made last year, from a free pattern by Whole Circle Studio.  This version is made from Island Batik fabrics.  The blocks are for a project I am designing for Threads That Bind - I need some more fabric to finish this one up. 
The little hearts are mini versions of my Modern Love mug rug!  The were made as a special request through Etsy and are only 4 1/2 x 5 1/2.  So cute!
They are straight line quilted, wasn't room to do much!

I also finished G10 for my CrazyJane quilt!  I talk to Jane a lot about her craziness while I work on these.  I was very happy that this one came out well - and that I had enough of the blue fabric to squeak out this block.  I've had this one for years and it is a favorite, I am glad to have a piece in my special quilt to remember!

The Island Batik Ambassadors will be treating you to a touch of fall this week!  Here is the schedule:


Don't forget that you can still enter the giveaway on my post from last Monday - if you missed it, just click on the link below to visit.

Hope your Monday was productive!

Sunday, January 28, 2018

A bit of Embroidery

I never seem to know what to do when I have multiple things to blog about, make one long post, or do two posts in one day.  So today I chose to do two posts, one for Project Quilting, and this one for Slow Stitching Sunday.

I am excited to have a finished project to share this week.  Years ago, I gave my daughters some embroidery projects for Christmas, hoping to expose them to this enjoyable form of creativity.  I believe I bought this pillowcase for one of my older daughters (I'll bet there is another halfway finished one somewhere in my house!).  I decided I should go ahead and finish this up so that it can be used and enjoyed.

The rose and the light part of the leaves were done, but the rest was waiting to be stitiched.

I did part of the stems using back stitch, but decided I liked how the stem stitch looks better.

It took forever to do all the peach stitching!  So many lazy daisy stitches and french knots!  Sadly, there are some stains on this, and I have my doubts as to whether this will wash out.  The good thing is that I will use it and not just set it aside as something pretty I don't want to ruin.

It sure is pretty, and will look nice in my guest bedroom.  Next I need to get back to the embroidery I was working on to cover my Quilter's Planner with!  I wanted to get that done before the beginning of the year, but the flu messed up that plan, and it hasn't seemed to be that big of a priority to me in the meantime.  Now I'm ready to get that done and enjoy it!

Linking up with Kathy for Slow Sunday Stitching.

Slow Sunday Stitching

Triangulation - Project Quilting 9.2

Since I missed the first challenge because we were out of town I wasn't sure if I was going to try to make somethng for  the rest of the challenges, but come Saturday afternoon I really missed being part of the fun!  So, I pulled out two strips from and Island Batik Stash Builder roll, cut them into triangles with my Tri-Recs ruler and went to work piecing.  After a couple hours, I ended up with this:

My original plan was to have all the blue triangles facing the same direction and offset them by 1/2 the width of the triangle.  I changed my mind when I set them together and saw this fun streak of lighting running across my quilt!

I did a simple cross-hatch on the diagonal with Aurifil thread in a peachy color.

The backing is some leftover snowflake fabric:

The hardest part was finding something to bind it with!  I didn't have anything I liked to go with that teal/blue, but finally found this minty green in another one of the stashbuilder rolls and was happy with how that worked.

This will make a nice little mat on my bar.  It measures 13 x 18.5 inches.   Made in Coos Bay, OR. Linking up with Kim for Project Quilting 9.2

Friday, January 26, 2018

Trying out my new Instant Pot

I was very excited to get an Instant Pot for Christmas, but then I ended up with the flu, and between catching up on all the things I got behind in due to that, and the birthday weekend trip I really haven't used it much yet.  This week I've been working on changing that.  So far I am liking it, and I really like how quickly and easily it cooks a variety of foods.

I used it to make plain white rice and decided that it was a bit dry, so next time I'll add a bit more water.  Then I tried it for brown rice and it was perfection!  I have always struggled with brown rice, it has to cook forever and it never comes out right.  In the instant pot it was delicious and much faster.

Today I used it twice.  For lunch, I made hard cooked eggs.  Definitely a winner, and they peel so easily!  I loved not having to watch the water, or the time - just put the eggs on the rack, add water, close the lid and push the button.  After I put them in a cold water bath I sliced one up for my salad.  Delicious!

Then I got the idea to cook the fish we were planning on having for dinner in the Instant Pot.  I googled salmon recipes for the Instant Pot and found one that sounded like something we would like to eat:  Instant Pot Salmon with Garlic Potatoes and Greens.  I must say it was pretty darn good.
Since my filet was frozen I cooked it for 5 minutes, and it was still a bit underdone, so I put it under the broiler while I finished up the potatoes.  The potatoes were really good!  I can't wait to try more recipes.  Tomorrow I'll be testing out the Slow Cooker function on it and making beef stew. Perfect for a cozy day of sewing!  And I definitely want to try oatmeal in it.  I figure I can make a larger batch and refrigerate the leftovers to eat throughout the week.

Do you have an Instant Pot?  What's your favorite recipe?

Past the Halfway Point!

I've been working on the rest of the blocks for Row G and am now officially past the half way point!

I was excited to make G6 - I love that little 1 inch star in the center!  I'm worried that some of the fabric looks yellowed, however.  Might have to replace that side piece.
G7 is the center block - I really felt like celebrating when I finished this one!
G8 was pretty easy, other than the slightly fussy measurement for the diamonds.  Y-seams on such a small scale are a bit tricky, but it came out perfect.
G9 wasn't too bad, other than the fact that I measured those stinking little white bars in the center wrong and had to use the seam ripper...but it came out nice in the end.
Four more blocks and I'll be adding this row to the rest!

I also finished up my valentine mug rugs and they are added to my Etsy Shop.  Just click the photo if you want to see more details!
I quilted each one differently.
They were a lot of fun to make!  I love the rose border fabric - picked that up as a remnant, so not a lot left now.

I might make a few more this weekend.  They would make cute gifts for my special friends!

Linking up with Crazy Mom Quilts for finish it up Friday!

Oh, and don't forget to check out the rest of the posts for the Four Seasons Blog Hop.  Summer is over, and next week we'll be hopping onward to fall.


Have a fantastic Friday!

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Happy Tuesday!

As I continue working on catching up on things in my sewing room and get it back in order again, I keep finding projects that are half done and need finishing up!  I spent the weekend basting a couple of quilts and got one of them quilted yesterday.  It's a shop sample for the quilt shop (Threads That Bind) and is made with my Window Box pattern.

I quilted this one in a double loop.  I would like to practice this one a bit more, but it turned out nice on this quilt.  Isn't the space fabric fun?  Can you tell I used a bright orange Aurifil 50 wt thread?  I love using orange, it just adds a touch of spice to a quilt without being overwhelming.

This quilt is super fast to put together if you are in a hurry to make something for a gift!  I love the fact that you can make it with a fun focus print and just add some coordinating colors.

Since it finishes at 48 x 48 I usually like to just add a few strips of leftover fabric from the top to make the back wide enough.  

I'm happy to have this one crossed off my list.  My husband and I are back to our exercise routines this week, and I am feeling great!  Nothing like being sick to make you appreciate feeling well!  I'm enjoying time in my sewing room and feeling productive again.  

If you missed yesterday's post, you definitely want to go see my Island Batik Four Seasons Quilt and giveaway.  Today's posts for the Blog hop are:

January 23 – Sunflower Serenade

Thanks for all the fun comments on my post, it's been interesting hearing about the different rulers you all use!  You'd think I have plenty, but I've been adding to my list after hearing about some of them.  

Linking up with Connie for Linky Tuesday.

Hope you enjoyed your Tuesday!

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Four Seasons Blog Hop - Paisley Dot, Star Shower, and a Giveaway!

Hi!  Glad you stopped by to see my post for the Four Seasons Blog Hop (brought to you by Island Batik!)  This week we are celebrating summer.

Today's fabric line is Paisley Dot.  What a gorgeous line!

The precuts come in two collections - brights and earthtones.  I got the whole set to play with in a fat quarter bundle - and what fun it was!  You will definitely want to keep your eye out for these - they will be arriving at your local shop soon.

Aren't these colors amazing?   If you like this, you need to keep reading and see the front of my quilt -  this is the back side, which I pieced from some of the leftovers!  Now I will tell you the rest of the story...

When I found out the theme of the blog hop, I started thinking about summer, and one of my favorite things about summer is staying up late and watching the stars, so of course I decided to make a star quilt.

Variable stars make up quickly using flying geese blocks, so that's what I went for.  I had a blast mixing and matching all the colors to make stars that reminded me of all the great things about summer.  Sunny blue and yellow.

Green grass and rainbow sherbet!

Watermelon, so juicy and sweet.  I could just go on and on, so many fun colors that made me think of summer - sand and water, fresh fruits and veggies, ice cream treats, swimming pools....I just can't wait for summer to get here now!  Making the blocks was fast and easy.  For each block I chose three fabrics - a background, center and star points.

For the star points I made flying geese units.  I used a 7 3/4 inch square from the background color and four 4 1/4 inch squares from the star point fabric.

I used the Ultimate Flying Geese Tool by Creative Grids and it helped my flying geese to be so nice and perfect at 3 1/2 by 6 1/2 after trimming up.

Then I cut a 7 inch square from the background fabric and subcut that into four 3 1/2 inch squares

And added one center square cut at 6 1/2.

Sew it all together and you get one star.

I repeated these steps, mixing and matching different fabrics until I had 16 squares.  

All of this summer beauty goes perfectly surrounded with a blue deep enough to be the summer evening just as the stars come peeking out, before it gets fully dark.  I had just enough of the deep blue to cut nine 12 1/2 inch setting squares, and the triangles for the outside!

(Wasn't it nice of the sun to come out just for this picture?)

I cut 2 inch strips from 18 fat quarters for the scrappy binding.

I loved making this cheerful quilt, and used every single color I received in my bundle - scrappy is definitely my love language for quilts!  I used a darkish blue Aurifil Thread for the quilting.  I feel like I use this swirly quilting a lot, but it really went so well with the fabric I decided to just go with it, even though it's not super exciting.  I love the way the thread blends in with the darks and the lights.

Now it's time for a giveaway!  I have three Stash Builder Rolls to share with someone - due to the postage costs this prize is restricted to US residents and all three rolls go to one lucky winner.  I would love to give something away to those of you who don't live in the US, so if my winner is an International entry I will send you three of my PDF patterns - so everyone can enter.  Leave me a comment telling me what rotary ruler you used last - I'm curious as to what fun rulers everyone else likes!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

If you haven't already entered, Island Batik is also hosting a giveaway for some awesome precuts - you can enter that here:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Here is the schedule for this week - make sure you visit all the blogs to see the beautiful fabrics and enter to win the giveaways.  Fall starts next week, so stay tuned!


Thanks for following!

Friday, January 19, 2018

Two Quilt tops in one week

This has been a good week of sewing for me and I am very happy to say that I managed to finish two quilt tops!  The second one you will get to see next week (I'm working on getting that one quilted this weekend), but the first one is my Quilter's Recipe Box quilt.  (Fabrics provided by Island Batik in the Fall 2016 Ambassador box)

I really wanted to get this top put together before I moved onto my next project, so I had to get busy and sew all my sashings on.  I added cornerstones because it makes it soo much easier to make sure you columns and rows line up like they are supposed to!

I just love it!  I am still deciding if I want it bigger or not.  I am just not sure if I want to make it a bed size quilt or  keep it as it is.  It's a bit large for a lap, actually more like a twin size.  At least now the blocks are all together and won't get mixed up or misplaced.

And here is a sneak peak at the next project.  Flying Geese are a part of this, but you'll have to wait to see!  It's for the Island Batik Four Seasons Blog hop.  Have you been keeping up with the posts this week for Spring?

Here they are, you might want to go check them out before we jump into summer next week:


Linking up this post with Busy Hands Quilting for Finished or Not Friday!

Finished or Not Friday at Busy Hands Quilts

Monday, January 15, 2018

Home Again, Home Again

It's good to be back home after a fun weekend with family!  We had a blast celebrating our oldest grand daughter's Seventh Birthday!

They had a bowling party for her, and it was very obvious that I haven't been in a long time because my score was not very awesome.  But it was such a fun time, and it was so great to watch all the little girls giggling and having such a good time.  It brought back so many memories of raising my 5 little girls and having parties!  

7 years old!  

On the way back we stopped for a bit to enjoy the beautiful day.  Hubby was disappointed not to be able to catch a couple of races, but it was such a lovely day that it was nice to get out of the car a bit and enjoy the day.

I added row F to my Dear Jane quilt last week!  Notice that I ended up with two blocks the same color, right next to each other.  Sigh.  I'm not going to worry about it for now.  If I feel like resewing one of those at some point I will.  Row G is next, and I have enough blocks to keep me busy for the rest of the month.

I want to get this top quilted this week -

I found a great vintage top in my closet that's just the right size for the back!  I love how this came out and would love to finish another top before the end of this month.  I have a good list of projects that I need to work on, so we'll have to see about that, though.  I have another snowman quilt to tackle as well as three different memory quilts.  Nothing has a certain deadline, though, so I can just pace myself.

It's great to be feeling more energetic and excited to be sewing again!

Hope you are ready for a great week, too!  Today's posts for the Four Seasons Blog hop are terrific, so don't miss out on them - the Elementz line is very pretty!