Tuesday, December 27, 2011

My UFO Challenge 2012

Come on now, lets pull out the box or the bin with those quilt tops resting and waiting for completion? I tried in 2011 to complete 11 UFO's and I did manage to get quite a five done.
  I needed to be reminded of what I actually did complete this past year!

I needed a little extra encouragement to go forth and tackle the ones in waiting. So far, the angel quilt and the blue jean circle quilt and the bastardized Mosaic Tiles quilt are the only ones that are finished.

I was inspired by  Patchworktimes.com and her challenge of committing to complete UFO's.

I did get the machine quilting done on the green log cabin round robin quilt and machine quilted on the colorful log cabin/drunkard's path quilt. They need only the binding, so if I get cracking, I can have two more in 2011.
But I have several on the go and not complete.
Here is my 2012 UFO List to complete:
1. Merry Modern Christmas (below) is a table runner that will have additional applique to it and then completed.

2. Primitive Dresden Plate quilt, still in the block stage, lots of work here to get this one to completion.

 3. Seriously Crazy Quilt, still in the block stage, settings etc  needed here.

 4. Orange Thingy Quilt is coming along, its possible with focused effort.

 5. Hexagon quilt is still in progress, blocks, setting the whole nine yards.

 6. Halloween quilt is still in progress.

 7. Crazy Modern Quilt below is progressing along nicely since this photograph was taken. Lots of work here to do this one.

 8. Maple Leaf Quilt is in progress, still lots of work here too!

 9. Checkerboard quilt.

 10. Star table runner, shouldn't take too much energy, but still not complete.

 11. Pink and Purple quilt.

This is lots for me to finish this year, what are you working on completing this year?
Happy quilting!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

"Summer on the Range" 2012 Quilt Along

"Bless me as a free man" Nelo Case's voice flits across my studio. I love her single "I wish I was the moon tonight" off her "Blacklisted" Album and its helping me combine my thinking for the quilt I'm working on. 

I started this quilt back in the summer with asking for your help to decide on backgrounds. I gave four choices, got some excellent feedback from all of you. 

You can see I didn't go with any of the previous choices given this summer!!

Thanks so much my loyal followers,you helped me find the right combination.  Now, I told you that I was so indecisive during the summer, my dresden plates came together and then they waited for a home for several months. I just couldn't figure out which way to go with the background color. This is what always happens, I change my mind after the first initial drawing. 

This new design "Summer on the Range" is my experience in a quilt of my childhood summer at home on the range. Cattle roamed around, horses and pigs could be played with on the farm. I road  horses, big Clydesdale horses, so gentle and loving. I fished, swam and hid from chores. But many of my happiest hours as a child were riding the big horses.

Now as an adult, I have a fine stash of fabric to draw from because I refuse to buy any more fabric. Its just simply time to draw from my inner resources in these economically confusing times.

Wow, crazy times and so, I have many wonderful conbinations to draw from and its all part and parcel and my way of putting things together @ Blended Fabric Quilts.  In my head I see one thing, but when it comes to picking fabric from my stash, its another thing altogether.

I don't think I'm the only one who's thinking and quilting more frugally and with the desire to reuse or reduce our consumption. Most quilters already have enough fabric to last their lifetime already!

 So what do you think? Come on ladies, give me some feedback?

 I've still got my hand applique to do around this center circle. I pin first as above, then I run a basting stitch around the perimeter to be positive of where my actual seam does go then that part is done.

Its kind of turning into a mystery quilt! You know? Want to play along?

I'm hoping that some of you will be spending some down time on your home computer, chilling with an iced Dubonet beside you and you'll give me some feedback?

Blessings to you and yours for this holiday season!

Leave me a comment if you want to follow along with this quilt. Remember contact details and I will email you the start of this new design. I welcome the input and assistance to test a new design. As usual if you use my design, please link to me with an email telling me where you've posted your work of my design. Copyright protected.


Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Denim Jean Potholder Tutorial

Wow, views have been quite outstanding on the previous posting on my jean potholders. I thought a little tutorial would help you make a few of these for fun giveaways at retreats, party's or when you suddenly have an unexpected guest. Or make a bunch and donate to a great thrift shop that is non-profit. They are so fast, you'll forget the time of day and keep sewing!

Now that is my kind of sewing project! Fun and Fast!

This was not my idea. I know, you can't believe it, but its true, I didn't even attend the workshop were these lovely's were taught! Sadly, I was away at the time, but the person who  brought and shared it with the Bulkley Tweedsmuir Women's Institute was Faye Van Horn, of Smithers, BC who was at the time our district President, so thanks Faye! Awesome job! Faye is the one standing in the photo below of our 2009 Spring Conference held in New Hazelton, BC.

This is the Quick WI banner made in 1936.

The following is my way of making these potholders.

So first you take any pair of jeans and you can cut exact 6-8 inch squares or as I do, make them with the most frugal approach on using as much denim as possible. I always reserve the zippered part of the jeans for a summer skirt. That is another skirt tutorial to come.

 I like to cut right at the intersection just above the crotch area of the jeans, then its all ready for a jean skirt! Flirty and all, these are fun and you feel very young in them.

Cut the rough edge off with a ruler and rotary cutter.

 Then I just kind of square it off, I don't measure and get all fussy, you don't need to! Just use as much of the denim as you can! You cut right through the two layers of the legs on the jeans.

 I like to use something reused in the center of my potholder, to reuse even more. I add another two layers of upholstery or reused wool between the two denim layers on the outside of the potholder.

Cut with scissors, its simpler, along the edge of your denim chunks.

Then I like to use a fancy, schmancy stitch with something really bright for the thread color. On this photo, you'll see the area of denim between the zig zag stitching. This area of denim is where you'll cut through one layer.  You can cut through two layers if using two layers of denim on each side. This is a little heavy and doesn't seem to improve the use on a hot pot. 

 Bind as usual, except I make the binding strips 2.5 inches instead of my usual 2.25 inches for binding a regular weight quilt. I add on the binding before washing this potholder so that it reduces the lint strings that go into your septic tank. I don't want things like that going into my washing machine.

The frilly aspect of denim chenille is seen right away, but is  more pronounced once you actually wash the potholder. I like to wash it with other jeans then it roughs up the potholder in the wash.

So this my tutorial, I'm hoping that you find it useful enough to share a link with others. I'd love to see some photo's of your own version, I can only imagine!! Please come back  here and leave a comment, I'll pop over to your blog and check it out for sure.

In addition, below is a link of an alternate version of denim potholders. Enjoy!


Friday, December 9, 2011

Jeans Christmas Pot Holders

Jeans are a nice clothing item to begin reusing and this is one sure fire way that is a great little gift item.

My favorite reuse project is pot holders made from jeans.

Here's how you get started!

1. Cut various good sized pieces from the legs of jeans or other denim clothing.

2. Then pair them up and resize so they are the same. 

3. Cut two reused or new cotton pieces the same size as your jean pieces.

4. Assemble Process: denim square good side out, down on the table
over top, place one cotton square good side down, place one cotton square good side up, then the last denim square good side up.

5. Pin well, sew diagonal seams right over top the  four layers of cloth, leving about 1/2 inch apart.

Then before finishing the edges, take scissors and cut alternately a slice through the first layer of denim. They are quite simple, but have a real nice, proper  binding edge with a loop for hanging.

Enjoy! Send me a link if you make some!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

The Modern Quilt Guild Showcase

I blog on a sister site called the Modern Quilters of the Bulkley Valley. I invite you to visit and check it out. I just started it and so if you live in the Bulkley Valley and want to join, email me and we'll hook you up.

These are some of my ideas on my movement toward more modern quilting styles. Enjoy!

My newest pattern published this month in Quilters Connection Magazine, its on the cover. This modern version is the tester pattern I did to confirm that my measurements were correct.  Go to www.quiltersconnection.ca for subscription details.

I came across some very interesting news the other day. I heard about a showcase of modern quilts call for entry! So get busy, pull out your funkiest, fun fabric and create something awesome for this showcase. You can find it here, http://themodernquiltguild.com/2011/09/15/the-modern-quilt-guild-showcase-at-fall-market-2012/


Tuesday, November 29, 2011

QWI Friendship Quilt

I'm a member of a wonderful ladies organization called Women's Institute. Our Quick WI branch has been pretty active, with new members joining all the time. Recently, like many of us, one of our members has to begin cancer treatment.We thought of our dearest friend going through this process. We knew immediately what we had to do, make her a "friendship quilt" to snuggle under when at the hospital. 
We all work outside the home or in the home studio and its so close to Christmas, but what the heck, we're on for two Sundays.

We laid out the sandwiched 12.5 inch blocks, ready for quilting. We placed a random sewing machine drawing of a 'heart' in each block, then stippled inside the heart on each of the 42 blocks.

As we went, we planned and talked, a real quilting bee!

 This event was held at Nola's house and we used her husband's pool table to lay it all out on, thanks Ed!
Nola was up and down the stairs, keeping us in coffee and goodies and the pot luck lunch was awesome for gluten/wheat free ladies like me. Thanks ladies, its so lovely to have pals like you!

 Our new President Laurie, pinning away, while Bonnie, me and Nola laugh along!

 Collaboration, quilting bee's reborn! Bonnie's a real trooper, holding that whole quilt while I did machine quilting. 

Success, in two Sunday's its a finished queen size quilt ready for birthday delivery to our past President.
From left to right, Nola, Denise, Bonnie, Laurie and me, Carli,
this photo is missing Chris Drey who helped on the previous Sunday! 

We are a great team of quilters!

Friday, November 25, 2011

A little crazy quilt....Silver Linings CQ

I started this quilt in 2001, worked in the method of 'quilt as you go', I completed each block independently with an intact sandwiched block. Hand embroidery in my opinion is the only method for a 'real crazy quilt' and this was no exception. What made this quilt so special, its like I was stepped back in time. Everything except the outer binding was 100% reclaimed silk linings from jackets and coats. Batting was worn toweling, green outer  border was from a fall mid weight dress. Labels are taken from reclaimed clothing.

This quilt is 42x42 and it won first prize in 'Most Innovative' category at the IPM Quilt Show in Southern Ontario, Canada in 2004.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

A little crazy quilting....My Secret Garden

I went through a stage in life where all I did was crazy quilts. Small ones mostly, purses, pins and even fridge magnets. I'm going to post a tutorial on fridge magnets coming up soon.
 I love to do three-four combinations of stitches. Such as this CQA Trend Tex Challenge that I didn't get finished until six months after the challenge was over, missed that one!
I love the soft pastel colors with the brown fabric, its called "My Secret Garden"

 I have  been crazy quilting since 1997, when I started the "Silver Linings Crazy Quilt and didn't stop since. The next posting is more of my crazy quilts. Some of the stitching below and above are combinations of a minimum of 3 combo's, sometimes some of the stitches are 6 stitches on one seam. Over lapping and accentuating each other. I am a real enthusiast of Carol Samples book Encyclopedia of Crazy Stitches. 

Enjoy! Tell me what you're obsessed with?

Robert Cerins Earrings!!

I just love Robert Cerins earrings for the Art To Wear they promote, but also because they use a different non-reacting metal for their han...