Saturday, January 30, 2016

52 Week UFO Challenge Project #6 - Valentine's table runner

Be careful when searching your sewing room.....

So, while I was looking through my sewing room for a piece of fabric to finish off one of my other projects, I found MORE UFOs!! Not a lot (thankfully) but, I did find a few more to add to my list.

Two of the things I found were these embroidered hearts similar to the ones that I have already finished off as ornaments, but since these two matched I've decided to make a Valentine's table runner with them.

One of my favourite Accuquilt dies is the Studio Tongue Rug die!! I LOVE making wool projects but I HATE cutting tongues for penny rugs and wallhangings so I was super excited when I found this one on their website!!

Accuquilt Studio Tongue Rug Die
I also love to scour thrive stores and garage sales for wool clothing that I can felt. Sometimes the article of clothing feels like wool, but their is no tag so you take your chances as to whether it will felt or not. This one was a skirt but unfortunately it didn't felt very well, so I've had it in my cupboard for awhile with no idea as to what to do with it.

Since this wool isn't felted, I need to finish the edges with a pillowcase turn. I've never done that with any of my wool projects, so now is a good time to try it out!

First I had to cut my background wool and appliqué my heart hexagons onto each end. I used my 
505 Spray to secure them before I did the hand blanket stitching around the hexagons.

I made my tongues (using my handy, dandy Accuquilt Tongue Die) and then I pinned them face down on the ends of my table runner - pointing IN to the middle.

I cut a pieces of black fabric the same size as my wool background and pinned it the top.

I stitched around all of the edges with a 1/2" seam, but left a small opening for turning.

Next step was to clip the corners since the wool is very bulky, and to turn the runner right side out.

The tongues after the runner is turned right side out.
Next, I used my machine to top-stitch all of the way around the runner to flatten it a bit and to close the opening that I had left for turning. A little press afterwards made it lie nice and flat.

Here it is - all finished and on my skinny front hall table, I'm all ready for Valentine's Day 
The finished Valentine's Day runner.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Quilting a paisley design and trying out our new GoPro

A couple months ago we were lucky enough to win a GoPro video camera. We aren't a family of extreme sports fanatics so the most exciting thing we have done with it was to strap it to our springer spaniel Willow to take a video of her chasing our jack russell terrier Pugsley. I would let you see it, but it could make just about anyone get motion sickness LOL

So, today when I was out in my quilting room working on my Gammill I decided to try out the GoPro myself and did a little video showing how I was quilting a paisley design on my friend Donna's quilt. The video is OK for a first try, but the video angle is a little low (guess I should have had the head harness mount on instead of the chest one). But now I know how to charge the GoPro, switch harnesses, how to turn it on, and how to edit the video. I also figured out how to upload it to YouTube and how to put it on my blog, so I think the possibilities are endless.

By the way, my teenage boys are MORTIFIED that I would use the GoPro to video myself QUILTING!!!

52 Week UFO Challenge Project #5 - QUILTSocial Flying geese quilt

Finishing up the Flying Geese quilt

Last month on QUILTsocial I used Northcott's ColorWorks Concenpts fabric to make a quilt top. Now that my Gammill was free, I finally had a chance to quilt it!!

The first step is to load the quilt on the frame. With lap sized quilts or anything smaller, I usually just float the top instead of pinning it to the leads. So first I pinned the backing, laid the batting on top and then added the quilt top.

The next thing I had to do was to decide which thread to use. I narrowed it down to three - purple/pink, lime green and blue variegated. I decided that the purple/pink would be one!!

I wanted to do something modern and came up with this straight line design with random triangles quilted along them. Luckily my Gammill has a horizontal lock, so I just locked it to stitch the line and then unlocked when it was time to do the triangle.

Triangle Step #1 

Triangle Step #2

Triangle Step #3
This was an easy and fairly quick design to quilt over the entire quilt top. After adding some binding the quilt was done. I delivered it to Taylor Sewing Centre so it could be displayed at their open house and I'll be teaching this quilt at Taylor's in April. Check out their class list here.

Here's the finished quilt - now on display at Taylor's Sewing Centre

Another UFO checked off of my to-do list!!

Saturday, January 23, 2016

52 Week UFO Challenge Project #4b - Heart pincushion

I think I must like hearts...and hexagons...and wool LOL

 My Accuquilt Studio Cutter makes is so easy to cut wool shapes - maybe a little TOO easy as I keep finding more of these embroidery hearts!! I have many die shapes - such as the snowflake, star and hearts in my previous posts as well as bigger shapes such as the Bullseye Hexagon Die. This die is AMAZING and I've made many hexagon quilts because of it!

Accuquilt Bullseye Hexagon Die

This embroidered wool hexagon made a quick little project for today. Here is a pincushion that I made just by blanketstitching two hexagons together - I left a little hole for stuffing and then blanket stitched the hole closes.
Cute little hexagon shaped pincushion

It's always nice to have a fast and easy project! Wouldn't this be a great little present for a quilting/sewing friend??

Friday, January 22, 2016

Easy homemade pizza

Friday night we like to have something easy for dinner and tonight it was one of our favourite dishes - homemade naan bread pizza.

I use my Thrive Life foods EVERY day! I have Thrive pineapple in my Isagenix shake every morning and more often than not I use some Thrive product in my dinner preparations. Our easy pizza uses LOTS of Thrive veggies. The first step is to make the pizza sauce. The tomato powder is so easy to use - just add water until you get the right consistency for your recipe. A little bit of Epicure pizza seasoning and it is ready to go.

Pizza sauce made with Thrive Tomato powder

Next up, the veggies. No washing or chopping for me and best of slimy mushrooms in the bottom of my refrigerator 😃
Onions, peppers, green onions and mushrooms rehydrated and ready to use on the pizzas

Looks yummy!

The pizzas are then assembled. Too bad there is no Thrive pepperoni - maybe I'll make that suggestion some day, but sometimes I add the sausage crumbles which are very yummy!
All ready for the overn

Two of the pizzas got olives and two got pineapple and then into the oven they went at 400 degrees. After 15 minutes we had hot and delicious homemade pizza! Yum! Yum!

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

52 Week UFO Challenge - Project #4 - Embroidered Felt Ornaments

Practising embroidery stitches on the train

Two years ago, Mike and I took the train from our home town in Ontario to Halifax, Nova Scotia.
Enjoying supper on the train.

 We had a great time, the food was wonderful, the train was nice and relaxing and Halifax was so fun to explore. There was ample time to read, play on my iPad and to stitch, so I took along some felted wool, an new embroidery book and some WonderFil threads that I was testing out for QUILTsocial.

The samples that I made on that trip have been sitting in a basket ever since because I had no idea what to do with them. So I got them out and decided to finish them off in a few different ways. The first ones I finished were the circles and hexagon ones.

Some of the embroidery samples.

I decided to make them into ornaments, so I cut a matching backing for each of them with my Accuquilt Studio Cutter, and then cut a cardboard centre that was just a bit smaller. I sprayed the back side of each backing with 505 Spray and then centred my cardboard pieces on each one. 

I'm using a large flat box to do my spraying in, to protect my cutting table.
Then I sprayed the cardboard and placed the front on top. I cut a 5" ribbon, folded it in half and slid it in between the wool layers at the top of the ornament. Then I blanket stitched all around the edges of the ornament.
Embroidered hearts

Hexagon ornaments

The finished circle ornaments.

Monday, January 18, 2016

52 Week UFO Challenge - Project #3b Quilt-as-you-go tablerunner

Using up the Wilderness Lodge leftovers

After trimming up the Wilderness Lodge animal squares I was left with all of these triangular pieces and OF COURSE I couldn't just throw them away!

I've decided to use these triangular pieces to make a table runner and instead of piecing them together, I'm going to use the "sew and flip" method of quilt-as-you-go.

First step is to cut the background and batting and use my 505 Spray to baste them together. Next, I drew out a grid so that my pieces will stay straight as I keep adding them on.

The first piece is placed wrong side down, lined up on the batting and then pinned.

The next piece is placed on top of the first piece right side down and pinned in place. then I stitched along the edge through all four layers.

The first two pieces are sewn to the batting and backing.

The top piece is then flipped so that right side is up and pressed. I then decided to add skinny strips of black fabric in between the pairs of triangles. Then I kept adding the pairs of triangles and black skinny strips until I used up all of the triangles.

Next, I used a sharpie marker to draw a straight line along both long sides of the table runner and then placed one of my inner border strips along this line right side down and pinned.

One of the inner border strips pinned in place.
 After both long inner border strips were sewn down, I flipped them right side up and pressed, then added the short inner border strips to the remaining two sides. I added the outer borders in the same manner. Once the borders were on, the table runner was all quilted and ready to binding. Here is it - all finished!!

The finished table runner.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

New Beginnings Block of the Month - January

Beautiful Batiks

The January block has been added to Craftsy!!

I've decided to make my Block of the Month blocks in an assortment of batiks! I've picked a selection of fat quarters in lights (whites and off-whites), darks (navy blues), mediums (turquoise blues) and accent colour (orange and salmon).

I love making flying geese with the method that we show in the pattern, but I hate throwing away the triangles that are trimmed from the blocks. So, when I draw the diagonal line on the back of my fabric squares, I also draw a second line 1/2" from the first.

 When I sew the square to the rectangle, I sew along both of these lines.

Then, I trim between the two sewn lines and press the seam towards the darker colour.

 The little squares that are made from the cut away section are just 1 3/4" square - they will finish at just 1 1/4". With only this block I made a total of 16 of these little squares. I've put them into a zip-lock bag and will keep adding to it all year long. Who knows what I'll be able to make at the end of the year!!

 The finished flying geese ready to assemble into the finished block.

Here it is - the January block!! I just love it and can't wait to see what Nellie's block looks like!!