Thursday, June 26, 2008

Showing some progress

It was nice to read all the positive comments and questions!
Thanks for the eMails, too!

I'll try to answer some questions.
The book where I got the quilting pattern is this one:

It is a very good one, I always look for some ideas.
She shows a lot of different patterns and possibilities and you can always enlarge or reduce to fit your block:

The paper for the pattern should be really thin, I was lucky to find this here, it is used in offices:

But you can also use this other kind of paper, it is easier to find, you just have to cut it to the size you need.
What is really important when you trace the pattern is that you use a hard lead pencil, I use 2H from Faber Castell. The "soft" ones will get through the paper and you will have it in the fabric, which is not good at all!

After quilting two sections I wanted to see how I should sew them together.
I trimmed the sections, but just to be sure I left a little bit more of fabric in one of them, because there is where you press under 1/4" so you can stitch to secure this folded edge to the backing.

Then, with right sides together, pull the backing fabric away from the batting and pin the five layers together:

Using a 1/4" seam allowance, sew the five pinned layers together.

To avoid bulk you may also trim the batting out of the seam allowance, I did it pretty close! You can not see it here because i did after I took the picture.

Pin and hand stitch, using the visible line as your guide and your anchor:

That is how it turned out:

And here is the back:

It seems to work!

I hope I was able to show you how I am getting foward with this method.
To me it is really "learning by doing", but I'm having fun!

Happy quilting everyone!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Getting started

First I would like to thank each one of you who wished me well while I was sick.
It was very kind and it helped me to feel better! My liver and my stomach are doing fine now and I hope it will stay like that!

A little sneak peek of my challenge:

While laying on the couch I had plenty of time to think about the quilt!

But...I had to catch up with the sewing and I'm glad I could sew more blocks yesterday.
Now they are all done!

Then I wanted to start with quilting in sections today.
I sewed 4 blocks together to have a convenient size, added the batting and backing ( here I used a whole fat quarter) :

I did not want to do free motion quilting, here I'd rather have sort of a motiv, but then I did not want to trace it on the block!
I remembered the first course I took years ago to learn how to machine quilt. Her method was using a "guide" paper instead of tracing the pattern on the fabric. That is how it works, I traced the feather pattern on a very thin and light paper, put it over where I wanted to quilt and started:

I carefully tore the paper apart. It really worked! The tiny little pieces of remaining paper will get away when I wash the quilt. It looks like a little mouse was at work here!

The first section:

Here is the back:

I enjoyed quilting this way, I could turn the block around without any problems and the thin paper as a guide for the feathers worked quite well. I hope to get better from feather to feather, from block to block!
Of course, this attempt is not done, the quilted blocks have to be sewn together and there are the borders. Everything is new for me!
But if I don't try it, how will I know if it is worth?!!

So far, so good!
Tomorrow the journey will go on!
Please join me!
Tell me what you think, what you know or would do instead, and so on.
I love exchanging ideas and we can learn from each other!

Stay tuned!
Wishing you a lovely and creative week!

Friday, June 20, 2008

Do you believe in angels?

Sometimes, when you are sick, not feeling well, things just seem to put you down.

You stay in bed and think of all the things you would rather be doing instead of being sick...

But then, when you least expect, there it comes, a wonderful, friendly comfort from lovely people!
I am so lucky and happy to have gotten such great gifts!!!
Anne Marie and Ulla, the friendly angels that cheered me up and made me feel so much better!

From Anne Marie, a wonderful friend that really touched my heart, I got this beautiful bag, I just hope you can see in the photos how pretty this bag is and how she sewed and quilted so well!

Aren't the buttons beatiful? I have never seem such ones before! It makes a great embellishment!

And on the other side she appliqued hearts as well, it is lovely!!! Just perfect to go shopping!

From Ulla I got some quilter's treasures! So perfectly hand sewed, made with a lot of love for details!
I participated on her PIF (Pay It Forwad), which I also offered in one of my last posts, but no one ( :-(((((...) got interested....Although you still have the chance!...
This is what she sent me:

I love all these things, they are simply pretty! And so useful, too!! Inside my new pretty bag :-))) they just have to come to every quilter's meeting! She wrote me a lovely card were she tells about every piece:

This is what I once read and I think it is really true:

"When I give to you what I made with my hands, I share with you my heart"

Tusend takk, Anne Marie!
Kiitos, Ulla!

I deeply thank both of you!
Your gifts came in the right time!

Bear hugs!
From someone who is slowly getting better

Monday, June 16, 2008

I've got the blues again!

The best excuse to sew another blue quilt (the 5th I guess...) was to take part in a challenge! I have so many blue fabrics (specially after I finished "Snail trail quilt" for DS1) that I decided to use the fabrics from this stash:

I still don't know how big it will be, there are enough blues, turquoise and green, but I might run out of off-white!...I'll keep on sewing as long as I have fabric!

I bought this book from Marti Michell about a year ago, but I never used it.
That is what I meant in my last post about the "first time for everything". I want to use only fabrics from my stash, including the backing, and, since I have no big piece for it, using her method I can have a pieced backing. I just hope it will work!

Have any of you already quilted this way? How did it work? I would really appreciate your opinion about it! I want to try this method, but it is always good to know which experience other quilters have made.

Let's see if I get all the blocks done until the end of the week! Gotta keep sewing!
I wish all of you a nice and creative week!

Friday, June 13, 2008

You make my day!

I got this great award from Laila, it made me so happy!
Thank you so much for your kindness, I feel really honored!

It is not easy to choose 5 blogs that make my day, there are so many!!
This time this award goes to:

Peg, from Happy in quilting. She is one of those wonderful prolific quilters! It is simply amazing!
Sonnja, her Teddies "Beertje Zonn" for orphans and Aids children in the third world is a real work of heart!
Christine, from Auntie Quaints Quilts, I love her stitcheries and her quilts, Oliver is also a great fan of her work!
Ulla, she is always doing a lot of things, specially "reusing" old fabrics, her bags are original!
Inger, even if I don't understand norwegian, I always enjoy looking all the beatiful things she does!

I could write about so many other wonderful blog-quilters!...You girls are on my special list!

Now I have to go back to one of my challenges, the Summer Stash Challenge that Eileen started in her blog. My problem is that I have quite some ideas, but I don't have too much time to make all of them, so, I had to choose one and now I'm about to start with the cutting and sewing. I tell you, I am quite excited about this! There is always a first time for everything, right?!
As soon as I make some progress in sewing the blocks I'll give you a sneak peek!

Wishing all of you a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

My first Civil War Diary Quilt blocks

I finally started to sew the blocks for the Civil War Diary Quilt!

It is a project I want to work without pressure, I'll make the blocks when I feel like sewing and it does not matter when they all get finished. I want to take the time to read the diaries in the book and just enjoy this new journey!
I'll try to use the fabrics I already have and hope they will look good in the end.

Here are the first ones:

The bag with Japanese fabrics is finished! The bag itself is easy to sew, only the front with the houses is what takes some time. It was good to buy a little bunch of these fabrics, one needs quite some different colours:

I sewed this little pouch a while ago, it is quite small, about 5" x 3 1/2" (12,5 cm x 9 cm), it has an appliqué and a little bit of handquitling:

It has now a partner and I think they go along quite well together:

I have some new appointments this week, but I hope to make some more things and finish some handquilting.

I wish each of you a lovely week!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Stitching and smelling the roses

This lovely little mouse is something I saw in one old edition of an australian magazine (Country Threads) and it was on my "have to do" list.

A cute fabric with lots of tiny mice (that I bought a long time ago) was the perfect match for a little pillow! And I just love the funny saying!
And, of course, who doesn't like apple pie?! Have you ever tried with cheese?

A gathering of little mice to complete the scene:

A crocheted one:

This one is made from felt, sweet little ears!

A very curious trio:

And a tiny one as a pincushion for your finger:

AnnaKa is from Norway and she has so many nice patterns, I really like her pouches and table runners. After reading this patterns more than a couple of times and "studying" the pictures, I finally sewed this pouch, but I didn't do any appliquè, I'll save that for the next one.

The seasons go by so fast and one really has to take time to smell the roses and enjoy the flowers while they are blooming and looking so gorgeous! Who knows how summer will be this year! Last year we had so much rain, the poor hydrangea had no chance, only the dandelions felt they could take place everywhere!!
So, before the roses get a bit spoiled in the garden, I brought these ones to the living room, they smell very nice and also very intense, this sort is called Abraham D'Arby:

These ones are the rambler roses, they always look so tender, so fragile, but that is what they are indeed, they don't usually last longer than a couple of days, but one doesn't notice that because they flourish constantly. But you can see the huge amount of petals on the ground!

Here is Abraham D'Arby again:

The yellow roses couldn't be missing, this beatiful colour gives a feeling of joy:

And also this wonderful, bright rhododendron brings colour and joy to the garden.

I must confess that I don't do a lot of gardening, I let the garden grow a little bit "wild" ( the call from the sewing machine is always louder!!!), but I am really glad I have one!

Do to the very warm weather I couldn't baste the Wind Mill quilt, I just didn't feel like sweating over it while basting! But there are a lot of other projects on the go, so the hands are always busy and happy, too!
I'm now working on some bags and pouches, I bought some japanese fabric and I wanted to use them. The japanese books are so full of funny ideas and also practical bags, I really admire the creativity they have!

Sew busy and " bee" happy!
See you!