Third Finish of the Year!

For some reason this post from yesterday disappeared:(  So I am re-posting it.  Thank you, technology, for keeping me on my toes…

We have had a couple of cool evenings lately, so it seemed like a good time to stitch the binding on Circle of Tulips.  So this is my third (!) finish of 2014!   My first finish was Owen’s quilt…

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…and my second finish was Civil War Bride..

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So, once I finished the binding, it was time to wash the quilt.  I didn’t have the heart to put this quilt in the washing machine, so I decided on the bathtub instead.  First, I filled the tub with cool water…

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…and added half a scoop of Oxi-Clean.

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I let the quilt soak for about an hour, swishing it around with my hands now and then.  I used a wool batt so once the quilt was wet, it smelled very much like a wet dog!

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I let the water drain out, rinsed the quilt under the tap (the quilt was very, very heavy) and pressed out as much of the water as I could.  I carried it downstairs where I had laid out a thick, clean blanket.  I placed the quilt on the blanket and smoothed it out, making the edges as square as I could.

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Even though I squeezed out a lot of water, within minutes the water was starting to be absorbed by the thick blanket.  I could have used towels, but I didn’t have enough clean towels at the time!  As you can see, even after soaking for an hour, the marks left behind from the Frixion marker did not come out, but I had a plan for that!

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Once the quilt was completely dry, I used my steam iron to remove the pen marks.  I never touched the quilt with the iron, I just held the iron 1/2″ or so away from the quilt and let the steam do the work.  So this picture is before I steamed it…

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…and after I steamed it.  Magical!

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Til next time…

Kerry

 

 

I know I should be packing…

It’s the day before I fly to Williamsburg to attend The Elly Sienkiewicz Applique Academy and I should be packed by now, but I am not.  I am too busy working out the rest of the border on Circle of Tulips and I want to get it figured out before I go….so I can relax!

So, in my last post I figured out how to center the swags and how to fill in the space between the swags.

My next step was to decide how curvy I wanted the scalloped edge to be. (Not terribly curvy, I thought, because I have to bind the curve.) So this is what I did…

I took a piece of upholstery vinyl and placed it on the already marked swag.  Next, I marked some placement lines with a Sharpie marker.  The vinyl is clear, but it really is there!

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Next, I drew a curved line 3 1/2″ away from the bottom edge of the swag.  Then I cut the upholstery vinyl on the curve, making sure that the Sharpie line was on the template, so I could see it.

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Now I can line up the template and draw a consistent curve…..with a water soluble marker…not a Sharpie!!

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My plan is to stop stitching at the drawn line, so that when I cut the excess fabric and batting off  I am not cutting through the stitching.

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Splendid!!  Now I really must go and pack!!

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Til next time….

Kerry

So….I went shopping!

This is Annabelle…so far.

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I have been working on Annabelle between other projects.  The pieces are huge compared to anything else I am working on, so it’s a nice break.

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It has an appliqued centre, surrounded by applique borders.  I have chosen to use mainly browns, rusts and golds.  At some point, I have to add some dainty hexie-flowers that are in the borders, as well as the centre.

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Each time I made these little hexie flowers out of brown, they just weren’t dainty enough.  So….I looked at my focus fabric, and saw this colour, (circled in red) which I can only describe as “not exactly grey…not exactly blue”.  I think little hexie flowers in this colour would look lovely!

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I don’t think I have any fabric this colour.  Even if I do have some, I wouldn’t know where to begin looking for it, so it might be quicker just to go fabric shopping!  So, I went shopping and I found exactly what I was looking for!!  Dainty!

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Of course, I found a few more pieces to add to the mix!

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Also, I am slowly, but surely making progress on “Circle of Tulips”.

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This is a little something I am also working on.  Sometimes I like to sit at my sewing machine and not applique!   I have a large stack of blocks from Barbara Brackman’s “Grandmother’s Choice” Block-of-the-week and it’s time to do something with them.  Barbara has a new Block-of-the Month starting soon, called “Threads of Memory”.   Check it out here.  I made 3 blocks every week, (instead of 1) so I have lots of blocks!  The 16 blocks I chose varied in size a little, so I added corner triangles to all 4 sides of the blocks.

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Then I was able to trim them all down to a consistent size (12 1/2″).

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This is what I have done so far.  I am making this quilt for Owen, a little boy who has a place in a lot of  hearts.  Owen is just a little over 1 year old so he is still in a crib.  But one day he will be moving to a big boy bed and he will need a quilt.

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Til next time……..

Kerry

Moving Right Along!

I was very excited to start working on this block.  First, I started on the right side of the wreath with a few flowers, leaves and buds.

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Next, I added the left side.

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And, finally, the bluebird!

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I have been steadily hand-quilting on Circle of Tupils.  I am pleased because it has that antique look I was going for.  I love it when a plan comes together!   The stencil that I have chosen for the border has me intrigued, so I am anxious to start it!

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Til next time…..

Kerry

The Sun is Shining!

The sun is shining, so I ran to get my camera so I could finally take a picture of “Circle of Tulips”.  I find the handquilting shows up really nicely in the bright sun!   The only time I hand-quilt is in the evening.  I like to sit down around 9 o’clock with a pot of tea and stitch the night away and contemplate life in general!   You can download the pattern for “Circle of Tulips” on my website.  It’s free!  You can also check out the new video for the second installment of “Peggy’s Puzzle”.

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Finally finished stitching the fruit bowl from Sue Garman’s “Friends of Baltimore”.  This could possibly be one of my favourite blocks!  One more block left!!DSCN4918

I used Ultra-Suede for the little frilly green things on the strawberries and blueberries.  Ultra-Suede is a life-saver for these tiny, tiny pieces.  I also love the little bit of texture that it gives.DSCN4919

I was going to wait til I completely finished the fruit bowl before I started Ladies of the Sea, but I couldn’t help myself.  Curiosity got the better of me.  I just wanted to see what the colours would look like against the background.  Dandy!

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Til next time…

Kerry

Life Is Good!

My Hubby and I are going on a little holiday.  We are leaving for Florida on Thursday, and, of course, I am busy packing!  But, I am even busier prepping the final borders of my Civil War Bride quilt.  I like to take my stitching with me wherever I go.  Heaven forbid I be on vacation with nothing to do!

So here is the bottom border.

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Next I started on the top (and final!) border.  First I glued all the bias stems in place.

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Then I glued all the leaves in place.  My bias strips were not long enough to do the whole vine, so I overlapped them and  placed a leaf on top to hide  the join.

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Next I added the flowers, flower centers and a couple of love birds.

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I wasn’t really happy with the leaves that covered the joins of the bias strips.  I thought it looked like I was trying to cover something up…..hmmm….I was trying to cover something up!  So I decided to add a couple of butterflies instead!  Now I am ready for a vacation!

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Believe it or not, I think I might just be getting the hang of hand-quilting on a frame.  I no longer want to pick the frame up and heave it across the room!  Life is good!

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Til next time….

Kerry

Happy Thanksgiving!

I am determined to learn how to hand-quilt in a frame.  I have watched many you-tube videos, emailed many questions to a couple of quilters who I know quilt in a frame and read a few books. Now, it’s time to do it!  I spent Saturday morning putting my Q-snap frame together and put my Circle of Tulips quilt in it.  I spent 2 or 3 hours just doing some cross-hatching.  Even that feels really different than cross-hatching in a hoop.  Next I tried figuring how to quilt away from myself.  My first instinct is to pick up the frame and move it, but I don’t think that will work.  I planned to spend today doing a bit more practicing, but I see it is nap time!

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So,,,instead I starting prepping and stitching the bottom border of Civil War Bride.  I chose not to include the owls.  I tried different colours and different fabrics, but they just did not look like owls.  So I just enlarged the love-birds in the top border and placed them on the branches.  And, of course, I added a butterfly.

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Then changed my mind and added a gold butterfly. Of all the fabrics I chose to fussy-cut my butterflies, I think this one is my favorite!

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Til next time…

Kerry