Friday, February 16, 2018

Mindless sewing

Not feeling particularly creative this week probably due to the February blues. This part of winter is the worse part for me. No real snow but rainy mushy icy crap and everything is ice and mud. But sewing does make me happy .

So I took some scraps. Threw them in a pile and just sewed together at random. Then quilted it. Not a very good job but remember this is mindless feel good sewing. Binding? No, to much work so it got the pillowcase treatment. (This project is only about 11”x 7”) turn it inside out. Now what? 
Well it could be a large mug rug or a clutch bag type of thing. I can always use another tote organizer.

Sewed up the sides after adding strips of Velcro. In true mindless sewing style, the Velcro is crooked and the sides are uneven. The sides are so thick because I used flannel I couldn’t go to the top end as you can see on the top photo but it will work.

Ta-da! Not that bad and it feels good with the quilted flannel.
And yes, it made me feel good to make something quilty.

I have started a new project here but it will involve writing with free motion so I have to have my wits about me. 
Hopefully I will show you progress next week. If I screw up the writing I’ll show you that too. I do know from experience to write out the words to look at while quilting even if they are simple words. Something about writing with free motion my brain doesn’t associate it as writing.

Do you get the winter blues? How do you combat it?

Friday, February 9, 2018

Downey woodpecker

 Finished! I love how it came out
 Wrapped around a canvas

 The back. Wanted to cover up the staples so glued down some ribbon
 I’ve only done the wrapped canvas thing once a long time ago and don’t remember much about it and was concerned about the thickness of the batting and 3layers but I use a really thin batting in mostly everything and it was no trouble at all. I just had to cut out a little on each corner and it came out fine. Not being a very good planner there wasn’t enough to wrap around the top and bottom so I added some fabric the same colors a nd it seemed to work. I should do the canvas again. I really like the look and it’s so easy to hang.

Have you ever put one of your quilts on a canvas or stretcher bars?

Thursday, February 1, 2018

WIP downy woodpecker

Nothing finished this week but I am in the quilting stages of this Downy woodpecker.

They have pronounced black and white speckled feathers on their backs. To make that I took a black fabric and pounced white pearl fabric paint on it.

I walked by this yesterday. It looks like a rusty waterfall but it’s ice. The iron in the rocks must get mixed with it.
My friend Glen loves to take rusty things and use it for surface design on her fabric. I can see her running to the top of this impressive sight and attaching fabric at the top, having it cascade down and leaving it until spring. How cool would that be!  

Stay tuned next week for the finished woodpecker 🤗

Friday, January 26, 2018

Yellow lab quilt

I’ve been working on him for awhile and I think he’s done. I’d like to say he is my dog but honestly I just licked his beautiful face at random from a public domain photo sharing site. Let me show you some photos of the journey.
 From drawn pattern to fabric. Mostly freezer paper appliqué.

Quilted on a nice lush green background which is something we are lacking here in the northeast right now.

Shaded with fabric pastels. After this you can see from the finished photo that I ended up making the eyes blacker. These eyes looked more human than dog and also darkened up the edge of the ears so you can see them. All in all I think it came out pretty good! 
I may try another in black but might try all fusible to see if there is much difference. Do you prefer fusible or turned under applique?

Friday, January 19, 2018

I give a hoot

I made a fabric quilted owl for a friend for Christmas and it was a challenge but thanks to some paint and “stewing” on the design wall I it came out ok.

Bottom left is starting to pick fabrics - so far so good. But then look at the next stage top left. It looks like two feet stomping on the poor owls face!
I trudged on and why I didn’t get rid of that dark blue is beyond me. At that point nothing was sewn or fused down. Adding the eyes helped draw your eye away from that in your face go awful blue. By this time I had glued the pieces together. I still could have taken out that blue legs but no, I left it.
Finally I came to my senses and tried to cover it up by brushing white fabric paint on it.

Here it is finished. If hadn’t seen the blue eyesore already I don’t think it would bother. The quilting also helped. 
Sometimes I think part of the fun is getting yourself into a corner and then figuring out how to get out. 
That’s why I don’t do commissions because if the project just isn’t working I can just say “ well I don’t give a hoot”
And try this and that- if it’s ruined so be it. Usually I find a solution. Paint, pastels and inktense pencils are usually involved. 
Have you backed yourself into a corner lately? How did you get out? Or are you still in the corner waiting for help to arrive to your brain?

Friday, January 12, 2018

Beach idea book / flexible curve

Have you ever used a flexible curve?

I found mine in the back of a bin the other day. I forgot I even had it, which is why when I spotted a second one in another bin while cleaning yesterday I knew it was time to organize. I must have bought another one not being able to find the first. (You never do that, do you?) so I set about using it to see if I remembered how.
What ever it’s made out of it lets you bend it to a shape or curve and it stays there. It’s really good for piecing gentle rolling landscape curves. 
See the photo above- you lay it out to the curve you like then draw a line on the bottom with chalk or your marking device of choice.

Then you take your next fabric move the flexible curve to the top of your fabric and draw a line there like you did before. As long as you don’t change the curve you will have the same exact curve that you can now put right sides together and sew with a quarter inch seam. Remember these are gentle curves. You don’t want to be sewing any roller coaster curves.

Here it is - all  pieced with the flexible curve. A nice beachy landscape.

Good size for an idea journal cover.

And I had this in my stash for the inside flaps - perfect!

Do you have any long forgotten favorite tools that need to be brought to the surface?

Friday, January 5, 2018

Birding journal

Like most of the country, we are in blizzard conditions today. Minus 30 wind chills.  Not fit for man nor beast. 
I find making a warm quilted project quite therapeutic. 

I was listening to Oprah ‘s super soul podcast the other day (which I highly recommend btw) and a woman said something that stuck with me.
“Simplicity and order creates Serenity 

I think this piece illustrates that. I’ve been trying to de clutter my house and life for the past couple years and it does bring me a sense of serenity not having so much stuff laying around. It keeps creeping back in because I am a pack rat by nature but am realizing that simple is better. 
Now if I can just incorporate that in my quilting life. I doubt that is gonna happen 😏

Have a good week - bundle up and stay warm,