Friday, July 31, 2009

Crazyquilters-ca - UTS Stitchalong - Friday

Another bit done on the sandbar, and a picture showing the sandbar from the side. With the seashells and "rocks" it's very three-dimensional.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Crazyquilters-ca - UTS Stitchalong

I've been working on the sandbar on my under the sea block. It's a Stitch Along with Crazyquilters-ca and we're following suggestions by Rose Anne, our moderator. A lot of it is chain stitch with an 8 perle variegated thread and some gold thread highlights. The rest is in thin fluffy yellow wool that gives a bit of height. There are some pretty shells, but looking from the top down makes them look flat. It's coming along OK. Another area that I have to think about is closer to the top of the block and i need to make sunbeams coming through the water. Click on one of the labels below to see the naked whole block.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Still on the jacket

It's now four strips wide with one more and a bit to go for the left front. It's pretty labour-intensive, so not growing by leaps and bounds! I'm also being very careful to sew on the printed line on the paper and pressing lots. Just a note about the silk that I am using. It's all reclaimed, so definitely used, mostly gently. Everything goes in the washing machine in cool water with just regular detergent. I have never had anything silk spoil by laundering it, even though ALL the labels say dry clean.

Monday, July 27, 2009

More on the Jacket

This morning I sewed together all the pieces in strip 1 and strip 2. After pressing the seams down and removing some of the paper from areas that would be difficult to get to after more sewing, I pinned strip 1 to strip 2 and sewed them together. Then I removed all the paper from the second strip and pressed it well. What a difference it makes with no pins, paper or raw edges. As I'm working on this project I'm finding out tricks that really help. For instance I started out using white thread. Now I've switched to a dark thread to help find the tacking when I am undoing it. Also I don't fasten off my tacking now, I run a few stitches, about 2" over the beginning tacking and then snip off the beginning knot. This really helps because the thread just pulls out and doesn't stop at the knot.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Silk jacket - moving right along

This is the left front pinned and ready to sew together. I have enough tacked pieces to work on the rest of the jacket, so I'll be at the sewing machine for a while getting this done. It's been a great take-along in the car project. I even was able to do some tacking at the Canadian Open Golf Championship! I took lots of pinned pieces but ran out of thread before I finished. So....I had to watch the golf!

Monday, July 20, 2009


These lads are crazy! This was MX1 Can-Am pro racing on the weekend at Gopher Dunes in Ontario, Canada. This guy isn't actually balancing on the trees, but high in the air after roaring up an earth ramp and soaring up into the sky! The good ones land on the downward ramp just out of the photo to the right, and then ride over a long stretch of rutted loose sandy earth. The whole course is over a mile and a half of jumps, rough track, hairpin turns and sometimes another 30 riders all trying to get into first place. It's pretty noisy and exciting to watch! And we took our own barbecue and eats and sat outside in the sunshine after the races were over.

Out of your comfort zone Challenge

CQ4Newbies recently ran a challenge where the participant would make two blocks, one where you were entirely comfortable with the colour, design, fabric, stitching and embellishments. The other would be out of your comfort zone. I started with my comfort block - pinks, lace, beads and the like. This is a needle case opened out to show front and back.
Below is my attempt at the "out of your zone" challenge. It's out of my zone as far as colour (no colour, just black, grey and silver), but not for any other reason, (like using big buttons, beads and butterflies), so I couldn't in all honesty, submit it into the Challenge. But I did end up with half of a nice tea cosy!!!

Silk jacket - update

I've made a whole pile of pieces and started pinning them into place. Just to be sure that I have the same patterns and colours on all pieces of the jacket, I'll pin everything in place before I sew.

Crazyquilters-ca - UTS Stitchalong

Our Canadian group of crazy quilters (crazyquilters-ca), under the direction of Rose Anne B. are working on an Under the Sea block. It's a stitchalong and so far we have worked on seaweed and a sandbar. This is my naked block.Some seaweed added, but it needs lots more of everything, thread, ribbons and beads! This is the start of my sandbar, the thread colour works well (Wildflowers) but it may have to come out because my tight stitching is pulling my block out of shape.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

My technicolour dreamcoat

I have a lovely stash of colourful reclaimed pieces of silk and a wonderful assortment of pretty embroidered and beaded bits waiting patiently to be used and admired in something special. Well, I have a project in mind for both. I am going to make a silk patchwork jacket and sprinkle the sparkly bits sparingly around. These are the colours I am planning to use; mostly turquoise, blues and purples.
Here are a few of the beaded bits.And this is the pattern I am going to use. As simple as I could find as i don't want the problems of collar and lapels, pockets or darts.
I don't know if this is anything like sane quilting paper piecing, but this is how I am going to do mine. I used four squares to the inch squared paper and cut strips of 3" wide. The seam allowance is 1/4" which is one square wide. I started by cutting lengths of one, two, three, four, five and six inches, 3" wide, out of the squared paper. I cut the same out of the silk using a rotary cutter. Later I changed to using pieces of silk a little larger than the paper piece just so that the silk would stay straight. I pinned and tacked the silk to the paper, sewing in between the paper edge and the first printed line (approx. the 1/8" mark). This is so when I machine sew the pieces together later, I am not sewing over the tacking line. Then I trimmed the pieces to match the paper pieces.
This is an ongoing project and I'll update my progress as it happens!

Good Pickings

Strawberries were late this year because of the cool weather, but when they were ready to pick they were big and sweet. Mo and I picked these two buckets full in the morning in about an hour, then made about 27 pots of jam and several baggies of frozen berries in the afternoon. Most of the pots go to our families, friends and neighbours.
Lori and Don - your names are on these!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Happy Birthday, Gary!

My friend Mo's son recently celebrated a special birthday. During the week before the party he and other family members put in a very pretty paved sitting area in a shady corner of their garden. So I made the cake to represent his spot to relax for the next fifty years.