Saturday, May 20, 2017
I have been wanting to make sourdough bread but I didn't have any starter and I wasn't feeling confident about making my own. I mentioned it to my son's girl friend at one time or other and for Mother's Day she gave me some lovely bubbly sourdough starter. She had started a batch for herself on April 3 and she generously shared it with me. :)
I am a little nervous about whether I can keep the starter going but so far so good. I received the starter on Thursday and I put it in the fridge because I had no recipes ready to make with it. When you use sourdough starter you do have to feed it on a daily basis but if you keep it in the fridge you don't have to feed it as often. It's not a problem other than you end up discarding some perfectly good starter during the feeding process. I didn't want to waste it so I found this recipe to use it up instead of throwing it away. Anyway, long story short is that these dinner rolls turned out great. I can't stop eating them.....
I don't think I am ready to make a sourdough bread without yeast yet so I will be making this bread tomorrow. As long as you keep feeding the starter it keeps giving so I just may be baking sourdough everything for the rest of my life! lol
Thursday, May 18, 2017
For the past few weeks my design wall has been a wall of crumb blocks. Over the past year I have been wanting to spend more time working on crumb quilts and I have finally got myself in gear to move forward with it. These strips are 2.5" x 8.5" and I have been trying to decide how to use them. I have ideas to use them as sashing strips, joining them together to create complete blocks, stacking them into long columns with long strips between them. You get the idea...there are so many ways that they can be used but I was waiting for some real inspiration to strike.
Yesterday, I had two friends over for a sew day. Vangie, Rosalie and I were chatting and sewing and Rosalie passed around a book from Missouri Star Quilt Co. and she pointed out a coin quilt that she liked called Kissing Coins. Well, let me tell you I gobbled up her idea right away and started plotting to make a quilt using this layout but instead of single fabric coins I would substitute crumb blocks.
During our sewing time together I got at least 15 crumb strips made but I do seem to spend more time chatting than working. :) I added them to the stack that I already had waiting for trimming. It really doesn't take too long to trim and depaper these strips and I love how they look - so worth the effort!
I did a little test to see if I could use these strips that I already had made. I trimmed a few of them to 5" and it would work but I think that I will just start making a bunch of strips that are 2.5" x 5" specifically for this project. Honestly, I have enough crumbs waiting to be used. I have a huge bin full and it is always growing!
Saturday, May 13, 2017
Now, again, I am not too sure how I want to proceed with the backing.
I do have a large geometric print fabric chosen but I am second guessing myself.
If I do use it as the backing I will have lots left over to potentially make pillowcases - or - I could use the remainders of the border fabric. If I use the border fabric for the backing I will have to supplement it and piece it all together and then what in the heck would I do with that large geometric print fabric!!!!. Decisions, decisions... :)
Sunday, May 7, 2017
I may have been MIA from blogging for the past month but that doesn't mean I haven't been busy working on my quilting! This is such a fun finish - I just love this quilt and I think it will definitely have to stay with me. As a matter of fact, it has already spent a night or two on my bed just so I could break it in and give it the lovin' that it deserves before putting it away for use next Christmas. ;)
Once I had the blocks all sewn together with the sashing it just wanted more from me so I obliged. I designed and added the two outer borders and I think it turned out pretty good if I do say so myself.
The quilt is bound with a striped fabric that I had used in at least one of the sweaters as well as the borders. It goes just perfectly with the front and the back. The backing has a small multi-colour leaf pattern that I think can be imagined into being Christmas lights. ;)
I don't have a Christmas pantograph but I do have one called Hollyhocks and I think it makes it look like it is quilted with feathers and poinsettia flowers. I used a pale green thread for the quilting. My quilt finished at 69.5" x 81.5". Thank you to Lorna for hosting such a fun QAL!
While I was working on this quilt my sister Cheryl found these fun coasters while she was out shopping. Of course, she did the right thing and picked them up to give to me as a gift. So sweet...sisters are wonderful!
Saturday, May 6, 2017
I did finally get my Angry Bird block done but it wasn't finished until long after it was due. When I did the applique I found that one of his eyes was way too small compared to the other and I just ran out of time to fix it. So, I returned the Pizza Box to the Guild with a photo of the Angry Bird block and a promissory note.
I found this cute block at Fandom in Stitches and even though it was originally designed as a paper pieced pattern I had no trouble adapting it to applique. I hand appliqued all of the pieces to the red background and after fusing the face to the background fabric, I did a zig zag with invisible thread around the outer edge to securely attach it. The feature fabric that I had to use was the blue and it worked perfectly for his eyes.
I did get my Angry Bird block finished in time for this month's meeting and I handed it in along with my May block.
The May block's theme was 'My Home' and I made a castle! The feature fabric that was mandatory to use in this block was the little floral print that I used as the windows in my castle. It was quite a simple and quick block to make because it used fairly big pieces. :) I fused the windows and door to the castle and then fused the castle and the tops of the turrets to the background fabric. I then did a zig zag stitch using invisible thread around all of the pieces to securely attach them to the background fabric.
I can't say that I have ever used invisible thread before and here I used it twice in one month! :)
Tuesday, April 4, 2017
What do I do in my leisure time if I am not sewing you ask? Well, I have been known to spend time putting jigsaw puzzles together, playing brain games like Sudoku and logic puzzles, reading, in good weather I poke around in the garden, and I also play computer games.
Hmmm....computer games....so, I went looking for a game design that wouldn't/shouldn't be too difficult to translate into a quilt block. The blog Fandom in Stitches came to my rescue and I found an Angry Birds paper pieced pattern that I thought could work. The pattern calls for lots of tiny paper piecing and I thought that would be just too much for me so I am going to do my best to applique it.
The only other thing that I 'have to' do today is go to a medical appointment so I think I should be able to get it all finished and hopefully make it look good too!
Saturday, April 1, 2017
Now that those tops are finished it is time for me to tidy up the scraps and put everything away. I am using my Go die cutter as much as I can but my rotary cutter is getting a good work out as well. I know that clearing up those scraps and clearing off my tables is so important for me to be able to work on something else. There is nothing that blocks my creativity more than not having space to work! :)
Friday, March 31, 2017
Yesterday, when I was working on adding the blue border I wasn't feeling very confident about my choice. I took photos of different options and sent them to my sister Cheryl. We talked on the phone and she totally reassured me that the blue I had originally chosen would look just fine. She was right!
I needed to cut the blue coping border to size in order to make the hst border fit and I had another delay. I really need some coping skills. ;) I actually did just fine on the first try but it took me quite a bit of time to gain the confidence to cut the strips and sew them on. I had calculated the sizes the day before and I was good until I rechecked my measurements yesterday. For some reason, unknown to me, I was coming up with different numbers. I guess we can call it brain fog because I decided to go with the original calculations and everything fit perfectly.
After all that second guessing and putzing around I ran out of time to finish adding the rest of the borders simple as they are. I did get the strips cut before I went to bed though and this morning I sewed them on.
I have totally enjoyed the process of turning those simple 12 blocks into a top and I can't wait to do the quilting and turn it into a quilt that will be enjoyed!
Thursday, March 30, 2017
|Still too small - only 52 x 68|
Wednesday, March 29, 2017
I took a photo of some of the blocks on the design wall with the sashing laid out around them. I think it is going to work just fine. When I design a quilt layout I am never really sure how it is going to look when my ideas are actually put into action. Happily, so far so good!
This is a very simple sashing treatment that will help to get my quilt blocks turned into a quilt with a finished size that will work better for me.
Tuesday, March 28, 2017
|beautiful back texture|
The binding is attached and so is the label and since it is starting to get a bit late in the day I plan on stitching the binding to the back of the quilt while I spend some time in front of the TV.
Monday, March 27, 2017
I decided that my Ugly Christmas Sweater quilt would be the one. I already had the backing chosen so I just needed to choose a thread colour. As you can see, I chose a pretty green that I think works with the front as well as the back. I love the backing fabric - it is actually leaves but if you use your imagination you can turn those leaves into Christmas lights. :0
Sunday, March 26, 2017
Westering Women has been on my mind since I completed the blocks and I think I finally have 'the plan' to help it on its way to completion. The biggest problem for me is that with just 12 - 12" blocks it doesn't really make a quilt of usable size. I like to make quilts that are at least big enough to snuggle on the couch with.
I have gone through several design ideas and trying to figure out how to execute them as well as making sure I have enough fabric to do so can be a real challenge so some designs have been rejected.
If my plan works I will be sashing the blocks and bordering the quilt with these 3 fabrics. It is not a very complicated design and I hope I can make it all come together into a cohesive and, hopefully, attractive quilt!
Thursday, March 23, 2017
|Weird photo angle but it is the best I can do with the space I have!|
Tuesday, March 21, 2017
|I still need to trim the setting triangles along the outer edges.|
I guess I am having trouble deciding if I want to include both greens or not or exclude the gold or not...I just don't know. I can't seem to make a decision on whether I like the sequence of colours when I try them combined together. Something is bothering me about them so here I am pondering away and trying to make a decision!
Friday, March 17, 2017
The last time I worked on the blocks for this quilt I thought that I had made enough but I really must be the Queen of Miscounts! I needed 10 more of the star blocks so I worked on making those today and then I started sewing the blocks into rows. I think this quilt is going to be so pretty!
I really should be doing something else at the moment but the pull of sewing this quilt top together is just too great. I think I will just hideaway in my sewing room and work on this for the rest of the day instead.
Tuesday, March 7, 2017
|design plan - not necessarily same fabrics as shown|
I thought that I had blogged about this quilt before but maybe not. I don't have a name for this quilt yet but I keep thinking something like Starflower (which I am leaning to) or Sunflower or something to that nature. I designed and started working on this quilt last September. I had cut out most of the pieces in anticipation of working on it while I was away on quilt retreat at Killbear Provincial Park.
Since the retreat, I have worked on making the blocks off and on but mostly off since then. ;) I did take it to my Guild's social sew day in February and all I got done was this messy pile.
|56 shoofly blocks ready and waiting|
Sunday, March 5, 2017
I got my machine back in January while I was in the throes of the dealing with the flu so I wasn't able to test it right away. As soon as I was feeling well enough I did tuck into it and so far so good.
I was working on Rosalie's quilt when I noticed the issues on the back and I ended up ripping out all of the quilting I had put in. Her quilt was quite large - 92" x 92" - and I had got it about one-third quilted. I was very unhappy and panicked about what I was going to do. But, in the end, all is well that ends well!
I finished Rosalie's quilt a few weeks ago with the help of my sister Cheryl. Thank goodness she helped me because after ripping out the original stitches I was quite anxious about the result the second time around! Cheryl was like a jack-in-a-box popping up and down from underneath the quilt while I was quilting. She was constantly checking to make sure the stitching was just as nice underneath as it was on top. Gotta love sisters!!!
Rosalie used a Bonnie Hunter pattern called Carolina Christmas but she put her own twist on the design and I think it turned out beautiful. I quilted it using the panto 'Deb's Swirls' and a med/lt green thread. Rosalie is very happy with her quilt - she did a great job and it looks fantastic!!
Saturday, March 4, 2017
Friday, March 3, 2017
Thursday, March 2, 2017
While there I managed to applique these little pieces onto the background square even with all of my socializing. :) Last evening I finished it up and I think it turned pretty cute even with my beginner applique skills. They certainly have not improved much over time because as we know practice makes improvement and I have not been practicing!
I used a Frixion pen to mark my design and after pressing it has disappeared although a small black mark was left on one of the petals of the flower because my iron has a burned on build-up on it. If anyone knows an easy and effective way to clean the face of an iron I would appreciate some help with that. I am sure the mark will wash off but I prefer to just not have it there to begin with.
I haven't worked on these blocks since forever and I really did enjoy it. Why did I stop?
Tuesday, February 28, 2017
Okay...I did it....thank goodness! I was really stumped with this box and I really had no idea what to do. I did some brainstorming with my sister Cheryl and the result is this 'ghost of clothing past' in my closet. You know the clothes I am talking about - the clothes we keep holding onto thinking we just might fit into them someday. ;)
These are all of the blocks in the pizza box including the one I just finished. I hope the next person to make a block for this box has an easier time of coming up with an idea than I did.
Friday, February 24, 2017
|Happy spring colours|
|All ready for the members!|
|Carol's Cuddle Quilt - 'A Warm Hug'|
I guess I am all ready for the March meeting except for my Pizza Box Challenge block and I am certainly struggling with it this month!