Wednesday, June 29, 2016

A Pressing Situation

What a beautiful morning! I wish I could spend the day outside puttering in the garden.....maybe later.

I've been stitching away at my FlowerGarden and really liking how it's shaping up. I think I'm on track to have the two borders complete by the end of Summer.

My husband made a great find at Ikea yesterday. He went to find a certain cabinet to be made into an ironing station for my studio....but, no surprise, he wandered thru' the discount section and found a similar one. This one was basically the same but doesn't have doors. The original one was $205....and the discounted floor model...
Here it is in the sewing room waiting to be modified...
I got the idea from another blogger I came across on the weekend. You can visit Lori at Crossquilt to see her awesome ironing station!

I am linking with Sew Fresh Quilts for Let's Bee Social. Check her out, she is having a great giveaway this week!

Puppy Update

We bought a kiddie pool to provide a new "nest" for the puppies. They have very much outgrown the box they had been in....and are more active every day!
Have a great day!

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Relax and Rejuvenate

I have to say, I'm ready for some down-time. Life has been so full of excitement in a short period of time I've felt anxiety welling up inside :(

Of course, what always helps is hand-stitching, my personal "yoga".

The last few days I've worked on a flower for the border of FlowerGarden. The long stem is basted on but I thought it would be fun to do the occasional flower. There are some beautiful flowers on this border. This one involves reverse applique....which I find a little tricky but the effect is worth it. I started by doing the reverse applique "off the block"...
....and a bit more...
...and, done....

I'm taking part in the SummerSolstice QAL with Happy Quilting. It started Thursday, so still plenty of time to join in. There will be two weeks between segments, this week was all the cutting. I've decided this will be a baby quilt for grandchild #5 due at Hallowe'en. I've been inspired by some of the Modern quilts I've seen lately and have chosen to work with Kona solids...
Does this happen to anyone else?.....every time I put a new blade in my rotary cutter I realise just how dull the old one was. I'm sure I've been using the old blade long after I should. Then the new one goes in and it seems like a revelation every time as to how sharp the blade should be! 

So far, I'm on schedule with the cutting done....

Puppy report

Up 'til now, Cooper has been leery of the pups and Minnie hasn't really been friendly about letting him near. 

Now that the pups are getting their "legs" things have certainly changed....
Something that's come in handy is the basket I bought at Quilt Canada. Great for taking the pups out all at once to play outside...
Actually, that is a picture of them all tired out after being outside. At three weeks old it only takes 15 minutes of playtime for them to conk out again!

Saturday evening it was so nice the we decided to eat outside....and we fed Cooper and Minnie out there also. Olaf decided that something smelled good...
Maybe it won't be long before the pups are eating puppy food!

On a hot day I do like to sit outside with a cooler and this year there is a new flavour. I give it two thumbs up!
It looks like another hot day maybe some outdoor stitching is in order. I do have the binding to finish for our new grandson, but I don't fancy sitting in the heat with a quilt draped over me! Maybe a bit of catching up on my daily hearts.

I am linking up with Happy Quilting with Melissa for my Summer Solstice, and with Cynthia at Quilting is More Fun Than Housework for Oh, Scrap (for my scrappy FlowerGarden). Because I've added to the stash, I am linking up with Molli Sparkles!

I'll also be linking with Kathy's Quilts where Kathy is celebrating a fourth anniversary of Slow Sunday Stitching!

Have a great Summer's day!

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Babies and Puppies and Weeds, Oh my!

So much going on in our little part of the world lately!

On Tuesday we welcomed the newest addition to the family, my grandson, Lachlan!

Everyone is happy and healthy! But how can time have flown so fast? This seems like only yesterday!.....

Of course, I have made a quilt for just need quilting. I think I've put it off because I'm not happy with it. Oh well, he'll receive plenty of quilts in the future!

We have another wee one due in November. I know I want to try something a bit more modern, inspired by my visit to Quilt Canada last week.

As luck would have it, I've come across a Quilt-along that starts this week and the quilt is done in many sizes so I will join along and have a baby quilt in the end. I think I'll do mine in Kona Solids.

The quilt is called Summer Solstice and you can see it here at Happy Quilting. Maybe you'll even want to join along!

I also have a "button" over to the right of the post to take you there.

I've been making progress on the right border of my FlowerGarden. I have the leaves appliqued and the long stem basted on. I'm so happy to be back to this quilt.
Hmm, I said long stem, but it doesn't look like it in the picture! This is a short segment, the rest of the vine is about 60" long!

I have to say, lately I've been having more and more qualms about using the Frixion pens for my applique. They are soooo nice to use but I am on the look-out for the next best thing. Any recommendations would by greatly appreciated!

I love how the perennial garden changes from week to week. Two weeks ago everything was purple. The colour of the week this week is white. 

Included in the white flowers is this invasive weed...

Usually I yank this out as it tends to choke the intended plants in the garden, but I'll leave them a few days because they are kind of pretty. I guess it's a matter of perspective....because I didn't plant this, it is considered a weed....if I had purposely bought it as a groundcover I'd be so happy with the results!!! 

Puppy update

Today the pups are three weeks old. On these nice warm days, we've been taking them outside a bit so they can stretch their legs.

I took Minnie to the vet yesterday. One thing I was told was to maybe buy some puppy milk to give to the pups as a bit of a reprieve for Minnie.

Here they are trying it for the first time. Well, to honest, this is a picture of them falling asleep on the edge of the dish after they had taken a few sips...


I am linking up with Sew Fresh Quilts for her linky party, "Let's Bee Social".

Have a great day!

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Sunday, part 2

I've come across a "new to me" blogger today and thought it would be fun to be part of his Sunday linky.

The blog is Molli Sparkles and the subject is what one has added to the stash, etc., this particular week.

So, here goes....

As I said in my previous post, I didn't buy much at Quilt Canada. As I was almost out the door, though, I stopped at a booth closest to the exit. They had a basket of hand-dyed fat-eighths priced at five for $10. Not bad, I thought.

Well, when the vendor saw I was wearing a button saying I was a member of CQA, she said I then get to pick 15 of them for $10!!!


I already have a couple of uses for these bits of fabric. What a great deal!

As I write this it's turned into a lovely evening. It was so very hot today....we didn't accomplish much except for planting a couple of rose bushes that someone got as a Father's Day gift.

 After just a bit of exertion I was out of breath. I noticed later on the weather report that we were under a poor air quality alert....that explains it. The heat also explains why I had to take off my fingers had swollen a bit in the heat!

Puppy report

The pups are coming along great. After dinner, once it had cooled off a bit we brought the pups out for a bit...
I'm linking up with Sunday Stash with Molli Sparkles, whom you can find here.

Have a lovely evening!

Quilt Canada 2016

What an exciting week it's been for me! 

This week, of course, Quilt Canada took place in Toronto. I wasn't sure I would get there, but in the end went with a group of friends.

My big news is that on Monday I was informed that my quilt had won an award in the National Juried Show at Quilt Canada. I was truly blown away! I'm so glad now that I had a plan to attend the show!

My quilt placed second in Quilts from a Pattern, Book or Workshop. 

I have to say....after 36 years of being a quilter this truly feels like a pinnacle to my hobby/career. I'm very proud and thankful for everything and everyone that has brought me to this stage of being a quilter.

I even eavesdropped on Jackie White as she led a tour through the NJS to hear what she had to say...

I have to admit that her words had tears welling up in my eyes. 

I took a few pictures, one of which was the first place quilt in my category...
This one was called Not Now, Maybe Never made by Joan Dorsay. It's a bigger, brighter version of my Tomato Soup, one of my all-time favourite quilts!...

I wasn't sure what I'd think of the show being held in the International Centre, since my only previous experience had been 2 years ago at Brock University in St. Catharines, but it was fantastic!

It was also fun meeting up with acquaintances.....a couple of women that I'd met at Brock, Ruth Kennedy from up Fergus way (and her beautiful quilts hanging in the show), and I wish I had had a few more moments to spend with Kathy from Kathy's Quilts whom I visit with every Sunday on her blog, Slow Sunday Stitching (but it was nice to meet her, however briefly!).

I took lots of pictures, but am not sure what the protocol is in sharing pictures from the show without permission. 

I really didn't purchase much at the merchant mall. There were so many vendors this year and so much to see!

 I came across a vendor called Big Village selling beautiful baskets and jewelry made from recycled glass. When I was a little girl I had an aunt who did mission work in Ghana and she would give my mother wonderful baskets in which to hold her knitting. These were the exact same baskets....and from Ghana, as well! Out of sentiment I just had to buy one. I have always wondered what became of my mother's, but I'm happy to now have my own...
I also bought a beautiful necklace to commemorate my quilt hanging in the National Juried Show!

I always like to come away from a quilt show with something learned. This time it was this....

When Modern quilting first came out, I poo-poohed it. Now, it's starting to creep in and call my name! Who knows where this may lead!!!

Saturday was a relaxation day....I really needed it after all the build-up and touring of Quilt Canada. I regret not being there for classes this year. I'll have to remedy that in 2017!

And, of course, I've started my day with some stitches....this time trying to catch up a bit on my hearts...
I may have to remove the cat heart....he looks kinda mean and I don't know if I can take him staring at me from the completed quilt!

Now over to visit Kathy at Kathy's Quilts to see what others are slow-stitching today! It's going to be a hot day here so maybe it calls for a bit more stitching than usual!

Also, linking with Cynthia over at Quilting is More Fun Than Housework for Oh,Scrap!

Have a wonderful almost-Summer day!

Thursday, June 16, 2016

This quilt needs a name!

I'm ready to begin my new quilt but I still need a name for it.

I was inspired by a quilt I saw recently at a quilt show. It's a version of Courthouse Steps so I believe we are dealing with a pattern that falls in the public domain area.

I shared my first block in a recent post....
I'm not terribly happy with this block, but it taught me that I'll have to think about the fabrics a bit not a total waste of time!

I think the first row around the centre piece doesn't have enough contrast, so I've tried a second block. This one I figured I should concentrate on light and dark values so I could "see" it better...
Better, but still not just right. Now I think the best thing to do is to alternate the rows with warm and cool colours...
I like this one! All three will be included in the quilt. They will play together quite nicely...

I'm hoping some of you may choose to do this quilt, as well. It would make a great "leaders and enders" project. 

Below are my instructions if you do decide to sew along with me. I am by no means owning these I said, they would be public domain. 

Start with a 2" square for your centre and sew on the first round...
....then the second round...

....and the third...
Here is what you need for each block...

Centre  -  2"square
1st Round - (2) 1"x 2" and (2) 1"x 3"
2nd Round - (2) 1"x 3" and (2) 1"x 4"
3rd Round - (2) 1"x 4" and (2) 1"x 5"

A friend gave me a tip recently for doing blocks like this. It was to cut pieces you need and put them neatly stacked in a container/basket/box ready for times when you can sew for a bit. I like that idea and it's what I plan to do.

Here's my start, lol.....

Not very elegant looking, but enough to give you an idea! I think I may have to stop somewhere and get a pretty basket for this project.

We went to Twisted Lemon on Wednesday for a celebratory lunch (I will wait 'til next time to tell you what was celebrated!). As always the food was awesome. The server asked if I had saved room for dessert....I answered, "no, but I'll have some anyway"!

Their creme brulée is to die for!


I will be attending Quilt Canada on Friday. I wish it was today as I don't think I can work....I seem to have contract Tennis Elbow and it's so tender and painful. Maybe I'll get a quilt on the machine and give it a try.

I didn't feel much like breakfast today so I just had a bit of toast and peanut butter. I always say the 3 "p's" are a dog's favourite....peanut butter, pizza and popcorn. Here are my little beggars...
....and, yes, they did get a morsel.

Have a great day!

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Anyone going to Quilt Canada?

There's a feeling of excitement in the local quilting community. 
Quilt Canada takes place in Toronto starting this evening and it will be interesting to see how it is all under one roof. I've only attended one Quilt Canada and that was at Brock University in 2014. I remember being overwhelmed with sensory overload and being exhausted when I got home!

I'm now regretting not planning to attend for a few classes and events, but maybe next year since I believe it will in be Toronto again in 2017.

I am going on I'll try to be a good blogger and take lots of pictures! I read Kathy's blogpost this morning over at Kathy's Quilts and she talks about how to be prepared for going to this massive can read her post here.

On the home front, the garden is starting to show some colour, although we could use some rain. I think I'd like to expand next year by planting some suitable perennials for cut flowers as I'm loving the lupines and peonies that I've brought in this week....
I can't get over the aroma of the peonies when they are brought in the house!

We were also in the Fonthill lately and stopped in at the VanVliet Greenhouses, who specialty is Gerber daisies. The gerbers are such a reasonable price and last for a good two weeks...
Over the years we would occasionally get a bird's nest on the lamp at the front door. We solved that by turning the lamp in the Spring to discourage the birds since it would be quite a mess. It's hard to believe how quickly a nest appears, though....
This one is a nest of a barn to me! I'm sure there must be some eggs laid already so we'll let the nest be and wait for the little peeps!

Along with getting back to my FlowerGarden applique, I've been keeping at my daily hearts. I really like this one...
I also like the fact that I've kept this up for over six months now! Maybe I'll do the whole year afterall!

 Puppy update

Not too much to report, just a few more eyes starting to open. They have grown so much since they were born.  I now wish we had thought to weigh them now and again.
Have a great day!

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Sunday Stitching

Summer weekends....just love them! ( I know it's still Spring, but we're getting close!)

My weekend started out Saturday with the big reveal of the mystery quilt I've part of at Quilt Junction. I had a marathon sew-day on Friday trying to get caught up before the can read about it here.

My sew-day didn't go exactly as planned. I decided to try the method shown for HST's.  Here is a picture of what I was supposed to do...

....and this is what I did....can you see the problem??....

I was not supposed to sew on either side of the horizontal and vertical lines! I didn't realise it 'til I cut them apart and saw this...
Seams on two sides!...that's not gonna work!!!

Oh well, it's like they always say, it doesn't pay to do things in a hurry!

The "reveal" was fun.....nice quilt and nice people taking part.

Then home to lunch made for me by my husband....yum....
I know...sausage and cheese wrapped in puff pastry not such a healthy lunch, but oh, so good!

We also decided to take a nice drive down to our favourite winery, Kacaba, for a food and wine pairing. It's the first time we've done such a thing and it was a beautiful day for it!

On the way back we stopped at quilt shop in the Beamsville area that I hadn't heard of before attending the Dunnville quilt show two weeks ago, The Quilted Cardinal. A nice, bright shop with lovely fabrics (of course!).
The great thing about visiting a quilt shop is that even when you don't "need" anything, it's nice to add to the neutral stash!

As we were going out the door on Saturday I noticed some twigs on the porch, so I looked up and saw this nest....
I've never seen anything like it so I googled it and it seems to be the nest of some kind of swallow. I'll ask my bird expert on Monday when I see him!

So that brings me to my nice, peaceful applique time this morning. Love it! I've taken up my FlowerGarden quilt again in hopes for it to be completed by the end of September.

Just need to complete the left and right border and it's a real quilt!

These borders look pretty tame compared to the top and bottom borders. If I could handle those then these will be a breeze, right?

 It will be amazing to finally see this quilt come together!

Puppy update

Today the pups are 11 days old. I expected their eyes to start opening by now, but soon I'm sure. They have, though, attempted to get up on their legs and take steps. Their legs just aren't quite strong enough.

Here's Batman (who happens to be a female)...
I also added to my daily hearts this morning with some scraps from a friend to commemorate the pups...
I am linking up with Kathy's Quilts to see what others are working on today!

Have a wonderful day!