Sunday, December 17, 2017

A Slow Start

I have been working on knitting dishcloths to give to my Mom for Christmas and everything was going along okay until this happened.

For some reason, when I started that dishcloth I picked up the end of yarn that was unwinding from the outside of the ball instead of from the inside. It is a total tangled mess. I did manage to finish the dishcloth but it took me a long time because the tangles and knots just kept getting worse and I really was spending more time untangling than knitting.

I didn't get out of bed until just after 9 am this morning. What a lazy bones! I couldn't fall asleep last night so I got out of bed after one hour. I don't see any point in just laying there and waiting for sleep when it is just not going to happen. I stayed up puttering around until 4:30 this morning and even though I was very tired it still took me at least 30 minutes to fall asleep...grrr.

While I was having my first cup of tea (I am now on my second) I thought I would knit another dishcloth using this pink and brown mottled yarn. I got a little bit done but all of a sudden I realized that it just didn't feel right. I guess it took a while for the brain fog to lift. So I took a good look at the package and's not cotton. :(

I still want to make a few more dishcloths so I will have to take a quick look to see if I have anymore cotton yarn. I could untangle that rat's nest from the pink yarn but I just don't have the time or energy to mess with it right now.

I already have seven dishcloths made and I can tell you that each and every one has mistakes. It just goes to show that I am not a very good knitter even when using a very simple pattern. I used Grandmother's Favourite Dishcloth and the instructions are available all over the internet. I know my Mom won't mind one bit though because she will be very happy that I took the time to make them for her. :)

I am linking up with Kathy's Quilts Slow Sunday Stitching.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Another Customer Quilt

Ardis asked me to quilt this little quilt for her last week and she needed it for Christmas. It really was short notice but I said sure....she had broken her wrist and wasn't able to do it herself.

It is a cute little quilt but it did give me some trouble. Well, not the quilt specifically but the backing that Ardis gave me to use. She had purchased a fleece blanket and it was really cute but it was smaller than advertised! I had loaded it on the frame yesterday and I thought I would just double check the measurements and it was not as wide as the quilt top. It should have been at least 3" bigger! So, I let Ardis know right away and she brought me a larger fleece backing to replace it.

I quilted it this morning and got it trimmed and it is awaiting pickup. Ardis just wanted simple loops and white thread. I used Cansew in the top and magnaglide in white in the bobbin. The batting is 100% cotton.

When Ardis delivered the second backing to me I had the quilt top hanging like it is in the photo and she noticed an oopsie. See the tree block in the upper right - it is turned on its side. She decided to just leave it as is. I think it looks like it got chopped down in anticipation of Christmas. lol

Friday, December 15, 2017

Customer Quilt

This is the last quilt that I have for Rosalie this year and I finished it late last night and trimmed it this morning.

It is a wonderfully, snuggly, flannel winter/Christmas quilt. The colours in the quilt in real life are a bit more rich than in the photo but as you can see it does looks really nice and cozy. Just simple squares of fabric - not all quilts need to be complicated. :)  I really like the striped border that she added and it reminds me that I should use more stripes in my borders as well.

Rosalie chose a gold thread from Cansew #6720 and I used a tan SuperBob in the bobbin. The batting used is 80/20 cotton/poly and the panto is Triloba by Hermione Agee.

We have had a blast of frigid air over the past few days but it is supposed to get better today. This quilt makes me want to wrap up in it and hunker down in front of the fireplace but there is no time for that!

Things are so hectic this time of year and it is hard to try to find time to fit it all in. I had to pick up last minute Christmas gifts yesterday and run a few errands so I had a late start on this quilt. Thankfully, I don't work at a real job so I have more control over how I spend my time but things are starting to feel quite real. Christmas Eve is just nine days away and I am at least one week behind where I wanted to be. Oh well....that's life I guess. :)

Thursday, December 14, 2017

On Ringo Lake - Getting Caught Up

I have now completed clue 2 and clue 3 of the mystery and I wonder if this is it for the coral fabrics. I could be wrong but I have used up most of my coral fabric and I was cutting from yardage.

I still need to work on clue 1 and that used aquas/browns/neutrals. I don't think I will be in a rush to start that clue until Friday though. That is when the next clue will be released and I suspect it will use the same colours so I can cut both clues at the same time. I like quick and efficient...and easy!

And speaking of easy - I really liked using the Bonnie method of making the parallelogram rectangles in clue 3. It was very quick to use the Simple Folded Corners ruler to cut off the ends of the rectangles on an angle and then quickly add the hsts on each end. Once I had these units all done and stacked into little piles I couldn't help but wonder if they will be part of the border?

Even though the cut-off corners from the rectangles were rather small I still saved them. You never know, they just may end up in another crumb quilt at some point. :) It is a sickness I tell you - I just couldn't let them go!

Between clue two and three combined there were a ton of neutral half square triangles used and that meant a whole ton of cutting. I am glad that I did pre-cut a lot of neutral strips ahead of time while working on the flying geese in clue 2 and that really did help with clue 3.

I think from now on I will make a point of cutting and keeping lots of neutral hsts in my parts boxes as a standard practice. It does make sense for me to do that because I do make a lot of scrappy quilts and these little nuggets are always in demand. I think if I just make it a routine I will always have a healthy supply with really little effort.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Binding Again!

Now that I am finished with binding Old Tobacco Road to Delhi it is time to start working on the binding for Adam's Ugly Christmas Sweater quilt.

I chose a striped fabric that was used in the quilt top and borders for the binding and I think it is going to look just fine. I spent a couple hours last evening stitching away while watching tv and I got a whopping 77 inches done.

As we get closer to Christmas things are getting really hectic. My husband and I steam cleaned the carpet in the living room and dining room yesterday and that was two weeks later than we intended. :(  We are behind schedule!! Anyway, I planned to give it all a really good vacuuming this morning but I don't think it is totally dry yet. I usually just give what my MIL used to say was 'only where the Pope walks' vacuuming but that just won't do right now. It will have to wait until later this evening....grrr....I just want to get it done and put things back into place. We are also going to steam clean the family room carpet today and that should be it for the really heavy cleaning - I hope!

I am participating in the 31 Day Blog Writing Challenge and so far so good. It really is quite a challenge to write a blog post every day - kudos to those that do it on a regular basis! If you are interested you can join in here and you can also check out the blogs of the other challenge participants.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Old Tobacco Road to Delhi

I finished stitching the binding on Sunday night and now it is on my bed and I couldn't be happier!

Old Tobacco Road was a free Bonnie Hunter mystery from 2008 and when I discovered it several years ago I knew that I wanted to make it. It brought back memories of when I was a child.

When I was a child we lived in Delhi, Ontario and at the time it was the heart of tobacco country.  In the last house we lived in we were on the edge of town and we actually lived beside a tobacco field. Delhi has grown since then and in 2011 it had a population of 4172. The tobacco field is now a park and there have been many new houses built in the area. Our old house is still there and I can't believe how tiny it is. My sisters, Cheryl and Christine, and I took a trip down memory lane a few years ago and visited Delhi to check it out. Over the past many years we had returned to the area several times to visit our grandparents and family friends but we had never taken the time to walk around the town and revisit. Anyway, while we were there we decided to have our lunch while sitting in the park beside our old house. We were looking at the house and talking about it and the current residents invited us in.  They were jammed packed in there with only a family of 4  - we were a family of 11! They couldn't believe that 11 of us lived in that teeny tiny house and neither could we. The kitchen was so tiny that there wasn't even enough room to put a table never mind with chairs. There was barely even enough room for us to stand in while we were visiting. It seemed unimaginable that my Mom was able to cook for eleven people everyday in that kitchen. My goodness where did she keep the pots and pans.  It didn't seem that small when we lived there! Anyway, enough about memory lane. :)
I pieced the backing using a wonderful print that I got at Fabricland for $3.00/m. Of course, I didn't have enough so I added a strip of the same red fabric that I used for the borders. I had enough fabric left over to make pillowcases and I couldn't resist.

This quilt is big enough to fit what I call my 'princess in the pea' bed but I had to turn it so the longer edge is on the sides. I am only 5' tall and the bed is so high I almost have to climb onto it to get into bed - just like a little kid! I think this quilt will stay on my bed for at least the winter and then I will change it out with something brighter in the Spring. In the meantime I will enjoy this beautiful quilt!
close up of the top - I made all of my 4 patches neutral/green
I like to keep track of the details of the quilts I make and this quilt finished at 81" x 102". I really thought I wanted to quilt it with gold thread but instead it wanted this greenish colour and I think it was the right choice.

The thread I used was Cansew # 6717 with dark brown magnaglide in the bobbin. The panto is called Flying Paisley by Jodi Beamish and I used 80/20 cotton/poly for the batting.

This quilt makes me happy and Molly and Peanut like it too!

Monday, December 11, 2017

On Ringo Lake Mystery - Clue 3

See all of those neutral strips in the background  - I cut a ton!
As soon as Bonnie Hunter posted this step I was downloading the instructions and printing them off. It was really fast and easy for me to cut the rectangles because I was cutting from one big hunk of fabric instead of from smaller pieces or strips of fabric. I cut wide strips and then subcut them to the smaller measurement and it was quick, quick, quick.

To make the required block pieces I have chosen to follow the Bonnie method.  I had previously cut a whole slew of neutral strips so they were all ready for me to cut the triangles for the corners of the rectangles using my easy angle ruler. Lucky for me I just happen to have a Simple Folded Corners ruler to use for cutting the corners off the rectangles prior to sewing. Now I just need to find some time to use it. :)

I have already used this ruler when I was making the sweater blocks for Adam's ugly Christmas sweater quilt and it worked out quite well for me.

My coral rectangles still require lots of attention before they are finished and ready to be used and I am looking forward to digging in. I hope to be able to show more progress a little later this week.

Funny thing, after I posted about having no willpower to resist this mystery I noticed this tissue box sitting beside my computer.

No wonder I couldn't resist - I was constantly getting this subliminal message every time I used my computer. :)

Today is mystery Monday link up over at Quiltville - pop on over and check out all of the mystery quilts in progress.