Monday, August 30, 2010

Summer Song---Top Completed!

I took Amy's one thing, one week challenge last week and decided I would try and finish my Summer Song (I named it!) wall hanging last week. I didn't quite make it, although not for the want of trying! I'm making this quilt for a guild challenge that requires the quilt have four Dresden Plates. Mine has five. I choose to do the simple circle plate because I wanted to add ric rac. This is my design and that is why I didn't quite finish. I sewed and sewed on Saturday and thought I had the top complete, but when I spent some time looking at it I knew there was something bothering me. I thought and thought and actually came up with an idea to fix the problem, but decided to sleep on the solution. I woke on Sunday morning and realized I wasn't going to like the fix more thinking! 
I finally came up with a solution and began deconstructing my top. I then re-cut and re-sewed the top. Our meeting to show off our challenge quilts is this Thursday (yes, I work well under pressure), so I must finish it by then. I must admit I'm liking the result. It seems like a happy, summer quilt and I think it's going to look great in my kitchen!
If you would like to see what others are doing with the one thing, one week challenge go here.

Monday, August 23, 2010

New Wall Hanging...A Quick Peek At the Beginning!

I just thought I would give you a quick peek at the center block of a wall hanging that I'm designing for a challenge sponsored by a local quilt guild that I belong to. The only limits we had in this challenge was to included four Dresden Plates at least four inches across in the design. One down, three more to go (although because I seem to lean towards symmetry, I have four more to go)! Because I love, love, love both sunflowers and ladybugs, I chose them as my main theme. It is quite a large block and is intended to be the main feature of the quilt. I'm going to start work on the border today. I also need to think of a name for it. Let me know what you think.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Stepping Stones Finished!

I started this quilt about a year ago and almost finished it, but then fall birthdays and Christmas happened and I had to put it away. Sorry about the hanging stick in the picture. It won't be visible when I hang it in it's proper place. The other day I was going through the closet and pulled it out. I decided now was the time to finish. I ironed it and proceeded to quilt. I had planned on quilting it in the ditch only, but the quilt had other ideas. I ended up doing a lot of quilting, but it is all straight line so it was easy, but time consuming. The quilting took about three afternoons. It's done (always good). It was something different for me and I had great fun making it. Last of all, I'm very happy with the results!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Sampler Finally Completed!

I finally pulled out the sampler I finished stitching a couple of months ago. To refresh your memory I made it using a cross stitch design from Australian Country Threads for the center. Then surrounded it with various borders that I found in a variety of places as well as an alphabet from an old, out of print magazine from the 90's. I have been debating how to hang it. I looked into framing it, but decided I really didn't want to go that route. So I decided to border it and quilt it. First I pulled out a variety of fabrics and chose a rather elaborate layout. I showed it to my husband who said it was way too much and took away from the stitchery. To make a long story short, he was right. I tried the elaborate border and it looked horrible so I went with simplicity and it worked. I've had this little hanger for many years and just couldn't find anything that seemed to be right to hang with it. I think I've finally found the perfect project for the hanger. What do you think? 

Friday, August 6, 2010

Block Eleven Done!

Tomorrow is my First Saturday Block of the Month meeting and of course I left my blocks until I couldn't put them off any longer. So yesterday I cut out everything and sewed the original kit blocks. I was especially happy with these blocks and they were quite fun to make. Not so many half square triangles in them as  past ones.

This is my concept block. I actually designed it about a month ago after the last meeting.

Here is the finished block. I'm really happy with this one and it wasn't too hard to make. One more to go and then I can start quilting them. I think I'm going to try quilting them first and then putting them together. I'll let you know how it goes!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Pillow Covers

Just thought I'd show you some pillow covers I made for my oldest son and his wife. Last week when I was in California. My daughter-in-law and I were shopping and found an interesting little fabric shop called "Fabrics on Piedmont". It was a very interesting little shop that carried a little of everything, quilting fabric, dressmaking fabric, even some home decorating fabric. There was also a nice selection of buttons. Among this treasure trove, we found these nice linen prints from Japan. They were needing some pillows for their new downstairs family room, so my daughter-in-law purchased the fabric and I told her I would make them. I had been looking for a house warming gift so this seemed like a perfect solution. I measured their pillows and constructed the covers out of two squares of fabric with zippers in the bottom seam. They couldn't have been easier. I made the orange one while I was there and made sure that they fit right and then brought everything home to finish up. They are made to fit 18 inch square and 24 inch square pillows. I spent yesterday afternoon sewing them and put them in the mail this afternoon. They have a mid-century modern home so these fabrics should be perfect. I'm happy with how they turned out and it was fun to try sewing with linen in such bright, fun colors.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

I'm Back!

Yes I know I didn't tell you I was going, but I went and now I'm back. I rode with my younger son and his wife from Salt Lake City, UT, USA to Oakland, CA, USA. The trip was about 12 hours long, so we got some good visiting in. Why Oakland, yes I know that it has a bit of a bad rep and of course some of it is deserved, but wow there are some really beautiful parts too and the east bay is so much sunnier and warmer than San Francisco. My oldest son and his wife just bought a new house up in the hills there. It was so lovely and quiet at his new place. On Friday the 23rd of July we went to the Oakland Museum and I must tell you it is a wonderful place to visit. There is something for everyone, modern art, traditional art and even some natural history. There is also a wonderful section on California history. We had such a good time. It was lovely to be able to spend some time with all three of my children and their wives. The top picture was taken in my sons backyard. The flower grows on a vine and is quite normal looking until you look at the center. Then it looks like something from a fantasy movie.
My younger son and his wife drove home on Monday but I was able to stay on until Saturday. My daughter and her roommates prepared dinner for me on Thursday. It was a wonderful meal and it was good to get to know her roommates a little better. On Friday my oldest son's wife took me to the Clairmont Hotel for lunch. The second picture is the outside of this hotel which opened in 1915. We ate on the veranda and then wandered though the public rooms. My oldest son, his wife, my daughter and I spent Saturday morning at the Berkeley farmer's market, then had lunch and then I flew home. I had a wonderful time, but I'm also glad to be home. I missed my husband and dog who were taking care of things here.