Sunday, November 29, 2015

Stitching on a Sunday

I'm making wonderful progress on my Auntie Green's Garden. I'm still so happy with it and could have been finished the left border except for the fact that the fabric I had chosen for the very last flower was very much a wrong choice!

Here is how it looked yesterday up on the design wall....

I enjoyed my stitching this morning, I think because I like doing this type of flower.....
I was also able to pick a few fabrics for the right-side border, so I hope to make good progress on that in the next couple of weeks.

A project that has to get done soon is fabric bowls for the microwave. These will be stocking stuffers for Christmas. The pattern is so simple, what could go wrong? Well. my first attempt doesn't look anything like the picture on the pattern.....

Sometimes it doesn't pay to hurry!!

I had a quilt on the longarm this week that sure put me in the Christmas spirit......

The pattern is called Fair Isle and the quilt will be featured in Quilt Junction for their Christmas Open House later this week. Love it!

I feel so indecisive today. I have decided to celebrate Christmas in  "minimal" way. I don't know why I don't have it in me to do all the regular decorating. I'm still looking forward to putting on the huge dinner, so that's ok.

I've bought a cute little EASY tree...

It literally took less than 5 minutes to put up! The picture isn't the best, but in real life it's all lime green and glittery. Cute!

But now I'm totally re-thinking it! I think I'll miss putting the beloved ornaments up. I also miss having a real tree, which we haven't had in about 5 years. Oh well, change is okay, right?

Have a visit with Kathy over at Kathy's Quilts to see what others are working on today.

Friday, November 27, 2015

Busy times

It's Friday already!

 Like I've said before, this time of year is super-busy for us longarmers. This morning I have a few people coming and going with drop-offs and pick-ups. When this happens, I hesitate to work on the longarm since I won't hear the door-bell.

So....I took a bit of time this morning while waiting to do a bit of sewing!

As many of us know, today is the start of Bonnie Hunter's mystery, Allietare. It's always good to get some of each clue's sewing done before the next clue comes out. But before I can allow myself to get at it, I really had to finish up what has been lurking on the design wall much too long. It's a Christmas present for my son and his wife and I at least want the top done....and now it is!.....

Hopefully, it will get quilted in time for Christmas, but it will have to wait til all my other longarm obligations are done. If it doesn't, then there will be plenty of time between Christmas and New Year's!

This quilt was my first time using the Quick Curve ruler. It was a slick process and I'll probably use it again, but you can really tell I'm a novice! I tried pinning the rows together, but, honestly, I had better results without them.

Of course, it did make things easier since I had my lovely stiletto that was made for me by a good friend!...

Still, how can I get perfection like this....
....and in the very same seam, get this.....
Hmm, I'm just glad this is a learning quilt....and I'll ask my son to not let people look too closely!!!

As for Allietare? I am just going to make half of the quilt, due to time constraints, and this if fine since we are a family who likes to curl up on the couch with a quilt!

Also, to save time, I am using a "constant" fabric as my background.

This morning's clue was to make a pile of 1-1/2" HST from backgrounds and the grey fabric. I just wanted to see how many I could get out of a WOF....for me it's 29, not bad!

I was going to use Thangles for this clue, but I figured I would try to commit to Bonnie's preferred method of using the Easy Angle ruler...

It worked out pretty good, but I did find I get better results if I feed the units thru' the machine "tip" end first. When I feed them thru' the other way, I tend to get a bit "off" at the pointy tip. I'm going to blame my feed dogs!

As for the pressing of the HST's, I've never followed Bonnie's suggestion of leaving the chain of
units connected. I don't know what's going on with me today, but again I figured I'd give Bonnie's way a try.....
....and, what do you know, she's right again, it was a time-saver!

I haven't checked the size of them yet, hopefully they are close to 1.5"!

Here is a peek at what's on the frame today. It's an absolutely stunning quilt called FairIsle....because it has the look of a Fair Isle sweater! This needs to get done pronto so it can make it to Quilt Junction in time for their  Christmas Open House next week as the featured quilt.
Have a great day!

P.S. (added Nov.30) I'm going to attempt to link this post to Bonnie's Linky party today, so visit her at to see how everyone else is doing on this first clue!

Thursday, November 26, 2015

It's a Purple day

Today I'm experiencing what I think is Sciatica pain. Not a good thing any day, but has me a bit panicky since a lot of my day today and the days of the next three weeks involves standing.

As any of my longarm friends can attest to, these next three weeks leading up to Christmas require careful planning. Almost any quilt that will be done now will be one that someone needs as a Christmas present.

So, what to do? Push through it, or take it easy for a day?

As I am pondering the fabric for my daily heart applique for my Day in the Life/Quilty365 I am wondering what colour could represent a bit of pain. I've decided on purple, even though I do love purple!

I really don't mean for aches and pains to be a part of my blog postings, I guess today it's just not good timing for this!!!

Especially when I have this facing me at the ironing board.....
....fabrics that need pressing for the beginning of Allietare tomorrow......woohoo!!!! I can hardly wait til tomorrow to see what the start of this mystery is with Bonnie at Quiltville.

Even though it was difficult sitting in my applique chair this morning, I did stitch a couple of "off the block" flowers for Auntie Green's Garden. It was nice to work on something other than green leaves and stems for a change! I do like the simple work of stems and leaves.....but I think that's ALL I've done for the last two weeks. Oh, except for my wee hearts!

Have a great day!

Monday, November 23, 2015

Unexpected retail therapy!

What's a girl to do?

I finished work early, then I got the call that my dentist appointment was cancelled, so I got the notion to call my quilty friend to see if she felt like an outing to our local quilt shop, Quilt Junction in Waterford.

Of course, my friend said, "of course!"! lol

I knew that I needed to get out there sometime this week. Now that I've decided to take part in Quiltville's mystery, Allietare, I needed to get a piece of grey fabric. I don't have much in the way of grey in my stash. The mystery starts Friday! I will only be making half the quilt this time, but that should be big enough for a couch quilt, I'm sure.

Here's what I've come home with...

I don't work a lot with black fabrics, so figured I'd feed the stash a bit with a few fat quarters. Also, to make it more do-able this time for me, I've decided to go with one constant fabric for the background.

Luckily, I have a lot of reds and golds on hand to add some scrappy flavour to the project!

For stocking stuffers this year, I've decided to try making fabric microwaveable bowls. These are to hold the bowl in the microwave and to hold onto as you lift the hot bowl out of the microwave.

I was going to use stash for these "bowls", really I was. Last week I was wishing I have more in the way of cherry fabric since cherry trees are sentimental to my family. Well, what was the first thing I laid eyes on at Quilt Junction....

Couldn't resist!!! Now to get them made.

That's all for now. I'd better go pick out today's fabric choice for A Day in My Life (Quilty365). I'm still keeping up with one a day!

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Stitching on a Sunday

Looks like nice, bright Fall day, but as I look out the window I find I'm already missing the leaves on the trees and sitting out in the evening with a glass of wine. This summer went entirely too fast!

I started my day with some catching up on my Day in My Life (Quilty365) hearts. I have prepared them each day, but this morning appliqued them. 

Next was poking at my Auntie Green's Garden a bit. I'm a bit nervous that the green fabrics in this section are on the dark side. I think it could be remedied with the perfect colour flowers....maybe?

I'll have to audition some fabrics carefully for this, I think.

Sometime this week I plan to get it all up on the design wall to make some colour choices. I finally am getting the feeling that I'm getting over the hump on this quilt! 

As usual, it's a good day to visit Kathy over at Kathy's Quilts to see what others are working on today. Altho' as of this moment she is having trouble with her usual Sunday maybe we'll see later on today. (....and, it's always a good day to check out her blog!)

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Thursday Recap!

I'm pleased that I have been keeping up with my plan to be part of the Quilty365 project! I get the feeling that this is snowballing a bit and a lot of people are joining in ...... so how about you???

Here are my first week's blocks, they look great up on the design wall together!

Yesterday's isn't appliqued yet. All of my stitching right now goes to the binding of a client's quilt. You can see my "wild and goosey" blocks insisted on photo-bombing the pic!

If you check in at Stephie's blog at Dawn Chorus Studio you can see her beautiful blocks. Reading her post this morning raised some questions in my mind.

Wouldn't it be nice to keep a daily journal to jot down the meaning of our block that day?


Do I wait til the end of the year to decide on a layout?

Or would that be way too much work with what will hopefully by at least 365 blocks? 

These are a couple of questions to think on early on in this project. I think I may do as Stephie mentions and maybe sew the blocks into nine-patches along the way. 

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

A cheerful "Day in My Life"

A cheerful day....because the incredible weather is still holding on this late in November, and because this quilt on the longarm just cheers me up....

I'm wondering if this is the first Kaffe Fassett quilt I have quilted for a client? I think maybe it is! The large blocks are perfect for showcasing the fabrics. 

I am also cheered by the fact that I get to meet an old friend for lunch on such a sunny day. Woohoo! I have to say that now that I am at this stage of my life, going on lunch dates is one of my favourite outings to do. Every chapter of our lives has it's perks, and going for lunch with a friend is definitely high on my list.

Just working with this quilt today makes me want to go visit a quilt shop, but I will resist that urge and save that for another day. 

I have been influenced by the mood of the day to do a bright heart for my Day in My Life project....again, a project started by following Quilty Folk's Quilty365!

 I guess you would almost think it's Spring-time by the look of this block....and it almost feels like Spring out there!

Again, you can see on this unfinished heart how I like to finger-press my seam before doing needleturn applique. This has improved my work tenfold and is easier to do, as well.

I have a feeling looking at this heart that I may be inclined to fussy-cut along this journey. I also notice that the day-by-day hearts are in no way going to be matchy-matchy...and that suits me fine. I know a lot of people need to have more of a controlled theme, and that's ok, too! Afterall these quilts are for our enjoyment, right?

Sunday, November 15, 2015

A visit to Sparta

What a beautiful looking day! All sunny and no wind....although I hear we are in for more wind mid-week, similar to the wind we experienced last week, yikes!

I had a full day yesterday, starting off with the introduction of the new Border Creek Station mystery club called "Quilters' Legacy" being hosted by Quilt Junction. The pattern in being offered is two colour-ways and here is the stack of lovely fabrics that I will be working with....
I was really having trouble liking the green fabric, so I've had to swap it out for the red one in the picture....this feels so much better for me! I hope I haven't compromised my quilt, but probably not. The fabric line is Mon Ami by Moda.

I'm still determined to keep up with doing a heart per day for my version of Quilty365. It's funny how things work out sometimes. I had thought to do a heart in memory of the awful news out of Paris this weekend, so I appliqued a blue heart on Saturday....then went to the first mystery class. At once I noticed that the above green fabric is all about Paris, going so far as to have pics of the Eiffel Tower and the word Paris....

So bizarre! So today's heart is a no-brainer...

For more on this project, visit Audrey over at Quilty Folk! I swear this is only taking approximately 15 minutes of my morning applique time....worth it!

After my morning at Quilt Junction, we headed out for an afternoon drive to Sparta, Ontario. I have never been but heard a lot about it through friends. Of course, the first thing people say is that you have to get the candles!!!

So, yes, we bought candles...lots of them!....but most will be stocking stuffers.

Everything in Sparta is quaint and the buildings/architecture is old. Lots of little shops, featuring different artist's studios, as well.

Sparta Candles...

A shot basically capturing most of the town....

There were many quilt blocks on buildings and barns in the area, but I only thought to get a picture of two....

We took the opportunity to visit a couple of the local wineries, Quai du Vin (I meant to ask how to pronounce it, but forgot) and Rush Creek Wines. They were both lovely and friendly and we'll visit again if we are in the area.

I didn't realise that Rush Creek was all fruit wines, no grapes. I think a little-known fact is that if you are one to get migraines from wine, that it is probably the tanins from the grapes and fruit wines shouldn't bother least this is what I have been told!

I bought a nice Pear wine which was much like a Reisling and another berry blend wine that I thought would be great for the Christmas table...yum!

It was an adventure finding one of the wineries....I'm sure we missed the "easy" way but we saw this tiny, tiny sign and followed it....

It led us along a winding, steep road that, I have to admit, made me scream a little, but we eventually ended up where we wanted to be!

Needless to say, after a busy couple of days I was ready for some extra applique time this morning. I'm still stitching away at my Auntie Green's Garden. I think, at this rate, by the end of the month I'll have both side borders done.

Have a visit with Kathy over at Kathy's Quilts to see what others are poking at today!

Have a great day!

P.S. This is a message for have swayed me, as evident by the return of the Allietare button off to the right! lol

Friday, November 13, 2015

A Day in My Life

Well, after much thought I've made some quilty decisions...

I AM going to take part in Quilty365 that I posted about yesterday.....

....and I AM NOT going to take part in Allietare, Bonnie Hunter's upcoming mystery!

I don't have much time to piece, and was already feeling a bit of anxiety at the thought of trying to keep up with Bonnie's mystery, especially since on this upcoming Saturday I start a new Border Creek mystery at Quilt Junction in Waterford.

As a longarmer, this is my busy time of year, so one labour-intensive project is enough!

As for Quilty365, here is my first block....

.....and here is the back...

I have decided to cut my backgrounds at 3.75", to be trimmed to 3.5". They will probably be in the buttery colour that I like for backgrounds, but that could change depending on my mood each day!

This circle was done using a 2" Karen Kay Buckley Perfect Circle. Many of my circles will be using this size, but I'm sure that I will mix this up to make it interesting!

I picked the fabric that was peeking at me from a pile of scraps because I thought it would be a fresh look for a new project....or it could mean I'm bloomin crazy for starting a new UFO!!!

When I finished this first block, I pinned it up on the design wall so I wouldn't misplace it. Boy, does it look tiny! My first thought was to take the project up to 4.5" blocks, but no, I'm going to stick to this size......I think.

Later this same day.......

Well, another change of plans! I still love the idea of this project, but I think I'll go back to my long-ago idea of small hearts.

As I was sitting coming to this conclusion, a Beatles song that I like was running thru' my head. It's a favourite of mine called A Day in the Life and you can hear it HERE. This is what I will call my daily heart blocks, A Day in My Life, since each little block is to reflect each particular day!

I will include the circle block as my first block, I think, but here's a look at my first official heart block.....

I like it!....and I like the idea of this project. As I said yesterday, it would be awesome if some of my friends are inspired to take part, as well, be it with circles or hearts or whatever! My only advice would be to keep it simple or you'll be setting yourself up to fail.

I also sit here thinking of the group of ladies involved in my applique class last month. I wonder if any of them are bitten by the bug of hand-work? If so, this may be a fun little project...but if you need to make it more manageable, try a small block per week, perhaps?

The wind is still strong in my neighbourhood. I think it's supposed to be nicer out on the weekend, which is a good thing since we've decided to take a day-trip to Sparta. I've always wanted to go since I hear good things. It will also be a first trip of it's kind with the pups. Hopefully they will enjoy the day!

Have a great day!

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Help ma' Boab!

A rough translation for the title of this post would be "goodness, gracious me"!

I'm actually considering another project....what's wrong with me???

I was reading a blog this morning by Stephie at Dawn Chorus Studio which you can also read HERE.

 She talks about taking part in a Quilt-along (aka QAL) with Audrey at Quilty Folk which you can check out HERE. 

The concept is to make a small circle block each day, picking out fabrics that reflect your mood on that day. It's even suggested to write the date on the back of the block in the seam allowance so if you choose to assemble the blocks in chronological order you will have that option since you thought ahead to date them!

Now, Stephie's blocks are beautiful, and she says it will only take about an hour a day to pick out fabrics and do the block. An hour????, hmm, I don't think I will stick with it if it takes an hour. I'm thinking, though, that some days could be spent on a more intricate circle, but a lot of time it really could take much less time.

I just recently completed my Circle quilt, which I thoroughly enjoyed, so I'm tempted!

Then a far-off memory niggled in my head....I'm pretty sure I had wanted to do something similar at least 10 years ago with small heart blocks! How come this memory can come forward but I can't remember what I had for dinner two nights ago?! Even as I was in the shower this morning another picture came to mind....I think the couple of blocks are in the drawer of my "applique table"....and sure enough.....

These are only about 3.5" blocks, so quite do-able. I'm pretty sure these were done at least 10 years ago!

So, I'm posting the "button" on the side of my page to the right, entitled Quilty 365. I'm going to think on this for a couple of days. Audrey says we can start anytime, so I don't feel the urge to jump right in. Will I follow the group and do circles?, or stick with my original heart blocks?

I hope to hear from a couple of my quilting friends saying that they would like to join in, also! How about it????

Have a great day!

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Stained and Trimmed


Cooper has been getting thick, long hair and it's been hard to keep up with the matts he's been I booked him in for grooming this month.

I was brushing him last night and one thing led to another....

That is about half as much as we trimmed last night. Usually he won't let me come near him with the scissors, but he seemed to put up with it this time. I think I'll have to invest in some proper tools if we are to do this on a regular basis. I'm almost embarrassed to show the picture of how he looks now but I know if we do this a couple of times we'll get better at it, right????? lol

One ear seems to be a lot shorter than the other :(


I was putting some stitches in my Auntie Green's Garden this morning. I'm always so careful so I don't know when this happened....

Can you see the coffee stain on the background right in the middle of the picture?

I'm not sure what to do. I think this is a first!

I almost tried to spot clean it with a bit of soap and water, but was hesitant since it may remove my placement markings. I think I'll try it when I'm finished this end of the border.

The other option would be to applique a nice circle over the stain... that's probably the easiest remedy! We'll see.

It's Remembrance Day, a day to be proud of the young men and women who serve our country. I feel even more pride this year now that I call this man my stepson...

We are so proud of you, Sergeant!

Monday, November 9, 2015

Just a quick note!

I have been trying to talk myself out of doing Bonnie Hunter's mystery this year.....trying really, really hard.

I made the mistake of looking again at her Introduction to the mystery which can be found HERE.

I have quite a few friends who all excited to get started and I guess I've gotten myself caught up in their excitement.

So, this little post has no pictures or stories....I guess it is my way of making the commitment to join in the fun! I will probably just do half the blocks and make a couch quilt.

I have posted a "button" in the sidebar...."Allietare", which is the name of the mystery quilt. I think this button should take you to Bonnie's site (sorry, not too experienced with this yet!)

Maybe some of you will decide join in the fun if you haven't tried one of Bonnie's mysteries yet. Be forewarned, they are a lot of work , but her instructions are super easy to follow and she is a pro at writing these up!

There is one picture in this post, after-all. An impromptu one of one of the first mysteries of Bonnie's that I took part in......

Have a great day!

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Decisions, decisions!

So many decisions and preparation this week leading up to retreat with some friends this weekend!

First, the figuring out of which UFO (or three) would be fun to work on! That's actually not a hard choice afterall......I've planned for a while that I would assemble what I have ready of my Flower Garden. So exciting! I can't wait to see it all together.  Here is how it looks before retreat...

Just a pile of blocks! I have all the blocks done and one border. Now they get put together with sashing made of 1.5" squares. I hope I have enough!?

Oh well, I'll sew as much as I can and stop if I run out!

This morning I didn't have as much time as I would like to applique, but I did finish a bit of my Auntie Green's Garden. I really enjoyed the soft yellow flowers......but then I hung it on the design wall and now I'm not sure they are going to be a "fit". Hmmm, good enough to leave for now and see if they grow on me (nice pun?). They seem a little washed out with the other flowers, but maybe they'll play nicer once there is more appliqued around them.
 I realised this morning that this border is going together faster than I had thought, (woohoo!!) so maybe I should try to have a bit of the right border prepared for the weekend? Possibly the stems and leaves could be ready. For me, the prep work is what takes the time. At least I have the pieces all drawn out on freezer paper...but cutting them out will be time-consuming also. It is a job that can be done while watching television, though.

There they are, the next 138 pieces! I should really be keeping tally, shouldn't I? It would be something to say,"Here is Auntie Green's Garden and there are 2,580,000 pieces in it"! lol, maybe I exaggerate a little, but I'm sure there could be a couple thousand.....or a few hundred?

I have to say, that seeing the picture of this quilt makes me realise how much I still love this quilt. The thought makes me happy, since I've been working on it so long and still have a lot to do. I did have a quilt that took a long time to make and by the end I didn't even want to look at it. I really don't want this to happen with Auntie Green!

Here is the quilt that took so long. It now resides on the rec room wall. Still not my favourite, but at least I can look at it, appreciate it , and maybe admire it just a little.

Have a great day everyone! (and wish me luck on the next phase of my Circles quilt, which goes off to the next level today)

Sunday, November 1, 2015


I can't believe it's November! Wasn't it Summer last week?....I guess not, but it feels like it.

What a nice day we had on Saturday. We took an impromptu drive to my favourite town. I'll show a couple of pictures first to see if you can guess where we were.....

It's Niagara-on-the-Lake! I love it. Just above is Greave's Jams, one of my favourite shops. I took the time to try on some clothes at my favourite boutique, where I had found my wedding dress earlier this year. If I suddenly had $1000 to spend, I would probably use it on a shopping spree there!

We actually didn't have time browse at Greave's or any of the other shops. We were just down to use a gift card we had received as a wedding gift to the restaurant in the Prince of Wales Vintage Hotel. We'd never been inside before and it was so beautiful!

I wish I was the type of blogger to remember to take a picture of a nice meal before actually starting to eat, but I always forget, obviously....

....but I did remember to get a couple of pictures outside...

This morning I had a nice start to the day putting a few stitches in my Auntie Green's Garden. I wanted to get some stems appliqued on....

.....and they went on so nice and quick that I got a couple of flowers done, also.....

Here it is up on the design wall so I could see how it was looking...

This left border is moving along so quickly that I'm going to have to do some prep-work on the next section!

Have a great Fall day.....and check out what others are working on today at Kathy's Quilts.

Now to head outside and enjoy the day.