Thursday, June 30

Not Getting Anything Done

Well this week has been low on creativity due to working outside in the real world. I've gotten behind on all my blog reading/chat groups and of course sewing. I did manage to get my table runner finished last night thou. Hopefully this weekend I'll get back in the swing. I get so spoiled when I'm home for days (not working) if working isn't a buzz kill for your creativity I don't know what is - but then you do have to be able to afford fabric...what's a girl to do. 

The flip side

Monday, June 27

A Fun Weekend

I had a wonderful weekend. On Saturday my sister and her friend came by and visited a while and I got to meet her friends baby - Ava. I'd made Ava a few hats and a pillow case dress but I'd only seen photos of her. She is so sweet. My kids got to meet Ava too and they were good kids. 

 Isn't she sweet. 
I did the outline of a hand zen doodle for Ava's mom and put
Ava's hand in the palm of her mother's. This will be fun to draw
and I'll show you the progress as I go. 

On Sunday I got the table runner pieced and started the quilting. I would have been finished with the quilting but I got in a hurry towards the end and let my stitches get too big and had to pick it out. I don't think there is anything I hate more than un-sewing free motion, but it had to be done. So I've a little left to quilt and then I can put on the binding. 
I've decided to take the grandmother's flower garden I'm working on and let it be the center of a lap quilt. I just kept going with the hand piecing and it's gotten beyond the table topper it started out as. More to come on that later. 

Friday, June 24

Oh what a good day!

Well today started out as just a run of the mill day - a little house work, running errands and then poof! I stopped at the post office and had 2 boxes. One was a book I'd been wanting for a good while that was on sale on Interweave in the Hurt Book Sale (and overstocked) My book wasn't hurt but was 1/2 price so I'm a happy girl. Today is the last day of this sale by the way. They have a huge selection of topics.

The other package was from the watch fairy - Elaine. If this isn't enough to make me jump up and down then little else will. Oh joy look at all those parts and bits. The big pocket watch case has my mind running in circles thinking of what to make with it. The small bits are screaming Post Cards!

This morning after his shower hubby informed me there is "very little soap left". OK that sounds like we're out of soap but I know there's at least 10 bars of Olay in the laundry room - I'm a bulk purchaser. 
In my mind when we get down to 2 of something we're out! So I'm thinking he's wanting more of the glycerine soap. I told him I'll make it in a day or two. After getting home from errands, putting everything away and determining what's for dinner - I had some time to kill. OK I'll try this and see how it works. So here's the mess I've made. The timer just went off so it's ready to pop out of the molds. Keep your fingers crossed. I tossed some oatmeal in one of the bars just to see how that worked out. The others are just soap and coconut scented. 

 All my excitement over watch parts, books and even the cutest little water melon I've ever seen - yes I bought it cause it was cute - I was not abel to pass on my excitement to the fat boy here. After he figured he wasn't going to get another milk bone he's just not interested any more. 

It is cute thou isn't it. Even thou it's cute it will
die a fast death later today. 

Wednesday, June 22

Somebody Stop Me!

OK just how many projects can a girl have going on at one time? I just don't know the answer obviously. So with 1 monster UFO calling from upstairs, an almost finished top on the machine, several post cards in the works and then yesterday I stared a table runner? 

These strips will be cut and then sewn together once again. 
I cut these strips with my studio cutter - LOVE IT!

If that's not bad enough I go out and buy supplies to make soap?
Oh dear me. Well I just can't help myself. Hubby loves glycerin soap. 
This will be coconut scented. 

Today is house work day so no sewing/creating. I like to get all the house work out of the way in one day if possible. I'm all mopped out now and ready to do something simple like dust. If I do the hard stuff first it seams fun to do the simple ones - oh how I have to trick myself when it comes to housework. 
But tonight is girls night and we're going to a painting class - social art - it's a good thing. 

Tuesday, June 21

A Few Easy Peices

Well I'm still plugging away on my English Paper Piecing and enjoying it a lot. Sadly thou I didn't think too far ahead and don't have enough of the white on white fabric to make this too much bigger. So a decision will need to be made as how I'll progress. For now here is how it's looking. Still thinking it needs that dash of red.

I also got my new camera "case" finished yesterday. The main purpose of this is to protect the screen on the camera when it's in my purse. It's not a high impact case (Peltex 70 between 2 layers of cotton) but will be perfect to protect the little camera when I go out. Hubby wanted to use the camera this coming weekend so this pushed me to get it done. Isn't that fabric just the cutest!

So with several little projects completed and my swap all boxed up and 
ready for it's post office trip today I was able to get back to my fish quilt. 

The other day I was watching a Ricky Tims video on-line and he showed this quilt - sorry I forgot the maker's name, that had these TINY prairie points inside the quilt. I loved that idea and thou I've not tried to make any as small as the example he showed I thought I'd give it a try here. This quilt will have a LOT of black and these slightly out of charter colors will really pop. My smallest point started with a 1.75" square. There are 3 different sizes and I really like the uneven effect. I have black batting ready to quilt this with. The back is finished and the quilt will be 50 x 50. I hope to have it ready for sandwiching by this coming weekend. As of now planning on the quilting being done in med gray. 

Friday, June 17

Beauty and the Beast

My friend Stefanie gave me the left overs when she made her beautiful niece several pillow case dresses. They were just big enough to make little dresses for Ava. So here is my very first children's garment. (remember the hat I made for her). With Edna's help it even has french seams and the arm holes are finished with bias tape. Wow for me that's pretty impressive. 

I guess we all make some things just for utilitarian purposes. Those things that just need to serve a purpose and that purpose isn't being pretty. Some people would take the time to make even a tote bag for farmers market a beautiful thing to behold but I'm not of that mind set I guess. So when it comes to making a tote for my dapping kit strength was all I was thinking about. At first I thought I'd use duck cloth which I had some of, but then I saw the legs from some old jeans still on the back of my sewing chair from where I made cut offs for hubby earlier this week. One leg was just worn out at the knee but the other one wasn't too bad and this became my fabric of choice. So here is my tote and it's sure not pretty, but it is very strong. I don't know how much this set weights but I'd not want to drop it on my foot for sure. 

Oh and I wanted to share with you my new hand bag. I just love it. My friend Jeanette made it for me. I picked out the fabric and she did the rest. Like the other one she made me it has a circle of pockets on the interior. This is what spoiled me so bad with the other one. Isn't the fabric on the outside beautiful. 

And speaking of bags I've got the pattern drawn up for a new camera case. I'd just made my old one when my little sony pass on. So the new camera is stuck at home till a new case gets made. 

Tuesday, June 14

Jewelry Making - Made Easy

Today I've added my first post on jewelry making How To's. This will have tons of info on making and designing jewelry. If you have questions please let me know and I'll address those on the How To page. I've had so many people say if only I lived near and could take your jewelry classes - well here you go. Enjoy!

Sunday, June 12

Getting Ready For A Workshop and a Little Sewing

Well I've been getting some samples ready for my next Wire Workshop. I really enjoy making jewelry as you know and these new pieces have been a lot of fun. I've used a torch on metal plenty of times but yesterday I experimented on several techniques for cooling (quenching) the metal to get different results. I wanted samples for the class and well it was just fun to play. Copper and brass are my 2 favorite metals at present and those are the ones I was planing with. I'll be teaching the class different ways to change the color of the metals and also we learn how to use a dapping block - oh and a new cold connection too. So trying to work that into a ring became a challenge so I just ended up making a necklace too. 
 just love this patina on the copper

The simple ring we will make in the workshop. 
Simple flat band with cupped metal disk and beads. 

Dapping block disks torched in 2 different ways. 
Both are copper - great variety of results. 

Mixed Metal bracelet (brass & copper) with 
yellow turquoise and pretty leaf clasp. 

Well today I really need to get the directions written up for next Saturday's class but I'm thinking I'd rather be sewing - so off I go to have a good discussion with the Pfaff. 
She's such a good listener. 

Saturday, June 11

A Look At Some of TAFA

As you can see on my side bar I'm a member of TAFA and it's sure a wonderful group of talent. 
I just found out I'd made 2 more treasuries on Etsy and wanted to share some of the beautiful art. 

Think Spring Swap Finished

Today was open house at JoAnn and I had a good time as usual. Talking with some of my current students and meeting new ones. Talking about jewelry for 2 hours is always a good time. I did make several new pieces this morning and will hopefully get photos of those done tomorrow. 
For now thou I have completed my Think Spring Swap and I'm pleased with how it turned out. I've wanted to try a moth for a good while and this was the perfect time. 

When I was sewing down the top wings they did a little flapping with each zig zag which made me smile cause he was coming to life. He'll go to his new home soon but for now he can hang out in the sewing room. It's 8x10. The 4 fabrics were a challenge but he's very cute. I did use the back and front of the green to get my 2 shades for the grass. 

Thursday, June 9

Moths and Night Sewing

Well night sewing is done while watching TV and as I've mentioned I've started a grandmother's flower garden "something". Not sure at this point how big it will get. It will for sure be a table topper. I have always normally done knitting/crocheting or zen doodles while watching tv but this has taken over and a basket sits by my chair now and I check it to make sure I have the little shapes cut out and ready. So glad I got the floor ott lamp when it was on sale half off. It's a blessing for sure. I'm really getting into the small stitches - 12-14 per inch. This is a very calming sewing project. Not sure yet how it will be quilted. Someone suggested I should hand quilt, but I'd originally planned to do it with the Sashiko. So I'll decide when it's done. 

I've also been working on a new swap project. It's the Think Spring swap with the Quilt With Us Group. They sent the fabrics we are to use and they really made me think hard. Of the 4 fabrics only one was something I would buy - so it's really taken me outside my color comfort zone. You know me and my earth tones with the occasional red tossed in. There are prints I'd not use often too and it's been a mind exercise to figure out a design. Here are the fabrics again and a look at where I am so far. 

I wandered around in JoAnn looking for the perfect "something" to make the moth's body out of. I even looked at fur - so I'll keep my final body material hidden till you can see it completed. Need some free motion on the tall grass and then I'll get started on that moth's body. 

Sunday, June 5

Oh I just love them little post cards I do

I'd planned to work on my swap for the "Think Spring" swap on Quilt With Us but some how got side tracked into my little world of post cards. They really suck me in. So after breakfast this morning I set up a few ideas. Didn't know if I'd shown you how I prep my small projects. 
 All lined up and ready to start sewing. 

 1 Lump or 2
Paula gave me several great old spoons
and I've been trying to figure out how to do 
something with them. This is the first one I've used. 
Had to get that copper in there of course. 

 Tick Toc #2 in the series
Tried out a new technique on this one. 
The lumpy part under the clock works. 
Used my cookie cooling rack and some muslin. 
Pushed the fabric into the little holes and then
ironed some steam-a-seam on the back. 

 Elven Shield
When I was making this one I imagined that I found it in the back yard
where a little elf had lost it in his hurry to escape my little yorkie. 
The brass shield was hammered and torched for the beautiful colors. 

Cherry Blossom - just needed to make a simple one too. 

I did get my swap piece all ironed, all
the fabrics selected and the pattern printed. 
Maybe I'll work on it tomorrow. 

Wednesday, June 1

I said I'd never do it...

Hand sewing that is. Well what do you know, I guess the old saying of never say never applies here. I was so stubborn about hand sewing saying I only did this when sewing on beads or embellishments I just couldn't get under my sewing machine foot. I do push a lot of whacky stuff under the foot too, metal, screen, wire - well you know how I am.  I got a book with a beautiful grandmother's flower garden quilt in black and white and just fell in love with it. I showed it to my friend Edna and she said the best way to do this was to hand sew it. My heart dropped. But game for most anything I figured I'd give it a try. Was I ever surprised when I fell in love with it. Edna made me a template and I cut out the freezer paper and then ironed on to my fabric and cut that out. Sewed the paper down and then started hooking the sections together - Hooked! I will admit I've wish listed the die for this method on Accuquilt and will order it very soon. It cuts both the paper and fabric - genus! So I'll finish up this table runner and my next one will be all cut out with the crank of the wonderful handle. Till then thou I'll keep cutting by hand.
The white fabric has a white print of ginkgo leaves on it. I may not be able to pass up putting a touch of red in this little runner. I have some beautiful red orientals.