Saturday, March 22, 2014

Ebony's Quilt

I used a piece of an old sheet, that was still in very good shape, for the backing of this kitty quilt.  It is 26" wide and 50" long. I make them this size, so they can be located on the back of the couch or folded in half and place on the seat of a chair.  It keeps the cat hair in check and you can wash them frequently.  This one is for my daughter's cat.  I just use scraps and try to include fish, bird, and cat fabric if I can. I have made them with frogs and you know the cat does not mind.  I just did a stitch-in-the-ditch on this one.  My sewing machine has a little foot that is raised on one side, so the seam sits right up against the other side, and I adjust my needle to the left enough to sew right next to the seam, so it looks much nicer than my old attempts at doing stitch-in-the-ditch.  After I have it quilted, I trim the backing down to an inch larger than the top, and just fold it over on the front to create a cheaty binding that I just top stitch down.  I do this for kitty quilts, because it needs to be sturdy, not fancy.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Sunset Sail coming along


these are blocks on my design wall
I am a slow sewer, even today, to say the least.  But I love it so much, I just keep doing it! I took the Sunset Sail class last Thursday and Friday evenings at Room to Learn in Kuna.  I am liking how this is going.  Of course, none of us finished by the end of Friday evening, so we are meeting again this Friday to do some serious finishing up and a baked potato bar.  Quilting and a potato bar! How awesome is that?  Sunset Sail pattern is by Margaret E. Stone for Snow Day Designs.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Fabric Flashback

When I was 16, I was pretty darned hot, and I didn't even know it!  Today I was cleaning out my sewing box from Junior High/High School and discovered a small remnant of red double-knit fabric that took me right back to the summer of 1974.  It was from the short culottes that was part of the uniform for my first job.  I think back . . . it was truly a world away from where we are now.  The uniform for women (aka girls) at the Red Steer Drive Inn was white peasant blouses, with the neck tying in the front, short red culottes, and a tiny red and white vertical striped apron.  When I was hired they gave me instructions to buy the materials to make the uniform. My mother and I went to the fabric store at the Collister Shopping Center to get the pattern and fabric.  The ladies at the fabric store knew what we needed for the uniform needed to work at the Red Steer.  I don't think the guys, who worked there, had to make their own uniforms.  Because I am a slow sewer, to say the least, my mother made the blouse and culottes for me.  It just occurred to me that it is the mother's responsibility to take a photo of their daughter when going off to her first job in uniform.  I think my mother fell down on the job.  I wish I could see what I looked like in that outfit.  Maybe immature, but I am pretty sure 'hot' is the word.   I was wearing that outfit and working the north window of the Main Street Red Steer the day someone was waiting for their order and heard the news on the radio that President Nixon had just resigned.  I am sure he looked like hell, but I looked terrific!  Of course, he was pretty old and I was 16.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Valentine's Day Gifts

Mary's "snack bag" and Phyllis' "goodie bag"
I made two more bags, as I had people I wanted to give them to.  I admit, I do enjoy sewing these silly useful little bags with one easy strap across the top.  These are instant gratification projects. They take alot less time to complete than a quilt.  I did complete a quilt top in January, but I don't know when I will get it quilted, since I am cleaning up my quilt room. Right now it looks like a bomb exploded in there.  Here is the quilt top I finished.  I used the "15 Minutes of Play" method of "made fabric" to make this quilt top.  I love it.
    Victoria  Findlay Wolfe is the author of the book "15 Minutes of Play".  It is a terrific way to use scraps, so you can stay away from the fabric store a bit and save your budget.  I really do want to use some of my stash, so I am trying to shop in my own fabric collection.  I am the first to admit there are lots of awesome fabric designers out there today and those fabrics are tough to resist.  I made list and I am sticking to it.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Snow Weekend!

Yeah! All commitments are off.  I am staying put. I already got so much done! I stayed up until 12:10 this morning, then went to bed and got up at 8:45; greeted the kitty, took a shower, did dishes and a load of laundry, while the kitty went out to play in the snow.  Now she is back in and lead me right to my office (spare bedroom) where I thought she wanted my company while she showed me she was going to jump up on my desk and thus onto the window sill for further snow watching. But NO! She is all purry and wants hugs and pets and lots of attention.  She is on the right arm of my chair, between me and chair back, on the left arm, face poised 1/16th of an inch above my keyboard. That is her body language for "If you don't pet me right now, I will be stepping all over the keyboard." 
  The trouble with snow days is, I have sooo much to do and how to choose?
Well, tidy up is a must.  Then, oh my gosh! Monday is the 10th, so next week must be Valentine's Day already!  I have at least two and now I thought of a third person, whom I am making snack bags for for V-Day.  So, in about a half hour, I will resume completion of the two I have started while thinking about what fabrics to use for the third. 
   Anyway, in November I started making fun house blocks.  I finally have nine made, but one doesn't count because it is a Challenge Block for the quilt show next August.  So, I need to make one more. But I love making these so I must make several more, if not many.  Here is a sneak preview.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Let's clean and organize!

When I write "Let's clean . . .", the word let's means "let us".  Us would be me and the kitty, because ain't nobody else hanging out in there making a mess.  Naturally, the kitty, aka Merlinda The Ninja Cat, will defer her part to me.  I believe her job is exclusive to testing all the fabric, that is not put away, by sitting on, laying on, rolling on, or batting it.  She is not allowed to clean herself while sitting on my table. That is a definite no-no.  She has her very own kitty quilt, made of flannel, that is taking up a section of my table.  Sometimes she lays on it.  Usually, she jumps onto the table when she wants some attention from me.  Sometimes, even when she is in my way, she looks particularly cute, so I have to take a photo.  I did take a video of her "tearing up the pea patch" one evening, but have not determined how to add a video to my blog.  That means she was chasing her tail and being particularly frisky directly in the middle of my piecing project.  Anyway, I have started with going through my red, white, and blue stash.  It turns out my blue stash is the largest, so I see a blue and white quilt looming on the horizon of 2014.  I am signed up to take a class called "Sunset Sail" in February.  I think blue and white it is!

My red and white fabric stash

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Tote Bag Berzerk!

Remember, I sewed two tote bags in December.  So, far I have sewn six tote bags this month.  I had sewn one for my niece, then two for friends, then three at the quilting retreat, in Eagle, last weekend.  I also sewed a fancy pillow case, an easy table runner, and some mug rugs, at the retreat.  Thank you, Teresa, for showing me how to make the fancy pillow case!  I just finished my second one today!  It is for Pete.  I went into my stash and found some special "Pete Fabric" that I purchased about 6 years ago.  It  is The Three Stooges black and white fabric, which turns out to be Robert Kaufman fabric and so is the accent red & white fabric which is the Dr. Seuss line (I bought that last summer with no particular project in mind).  Stooges and Seuss are fittingly fun together!  The bold black and white border fabric is Kim Schaefer for Andover.  What a lovely combination! If I do say so myself.  Now that I have done these quick fun things, I am sorting out, organizing, and cleaning my quilt room.  An actual quilt project will be starting in a week or two.

I made this 'snack' bag for my niece. I mailed it to her with some Owlish goodies.

His and hers pillow cases and five tote bags!

This is so you can see the details on this fine Three Stooges pillow case.