Monday, December 24, 2012

Baby K is finally here! 

A sister for Little D.


On another note...
The organizers of the Simply Solids Modern Bee are looking for some more Canadian participants to fill a second group. 
Are you a Canadian quilter?  Interested?

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

yes... no...

I should just stay off the internet. 
I don't know how I find things I don't mean to find, but I do.  And then I get suckered in, my own fault, to things.

Have you heard about the Simply Solids Swap hosted by Sew at Home Mummy?

Simply Solids: a modern {bee}

Somehow, I did.

I avoided signing up because, well, baby is due any day now and who knows how busy I will be in the coming months.

Then I saw a solids swap that is tied to this bee.
Well, that seemed doable, so I signed up.  No sewing involved, just cutting and sending, and really, I love me some solids.

But now, I am very tempted to join the Bee swap. 

Saturday, December 15, 2012

pictures and words

A mini quilt gift - for a book and a quilt lover.

 I started this project in January, and it's kind of fitting that I finish it in December.  

 Most of the little bits were gotten in scrap swaps and other random swaps.

Thanks to all of you who helped me with getting all different bits for this!

 More fabulous mail!  Another scrap + small handmade item swap.  My partner spoiled me and gave me a gorgeous pillow cover and well over a FQ worth of scraps!

My husband is having knee surgery in January to repair a torn ACL, and because he doesn't want to be bored and alone in the living room, we are moving the house around!  I was not excited at first, but then he talked about a real sewing corner for me and a new desk with shelves... then I got into it.  He's also building a new computer desk and two side tables.  

While he will be busy building, I will be busy hand sewing.  Putting the finishing touches on my Hexy MF top.  Still wobbling over the quilting part.  Katy's original quilt has all the flowers quilted individually with a different design... I'm not sure if the local quilter here can do that.  I looked up a few other hexagon quilts and thought that maybe, just maybe I can hand quilt it.  

Any tips for hand quilting before I get bogged down and never finish?

Thursday, December 6, 2012

mail overload!

This has been a good mail week. 
Seriously, I received 5 packages this week! And all included fabric!  
Sure makes for good pre-baby distractions.

I swapped some fabric with on Flickr and she felt so bad for her delay in mailing off the swap that she generously included the two fabrics on the right.  

These beauties were received as part of the MFSG for November - 5 FQs of Sketch from Timeless Treasures.

These 1 YARD cuts were a giveaway win from Cathy at Blueberry Patch.  I had entered her giveaway during the Canadian Blogathon.  They are so gorgeous.

The next two bits of mail were from swaps on Flickr as well.  Remember I had made a pillow cover for the Pillow Talk {Swap}?  My partner had received hers a while ago and all these other ladies were receiving gorgeous pillows.  I was beginning to think there were going to be no pillow covers left!  

Silly me.
Look what came to live in my house!

My partner, Miss Emily D, made this gorgeous cover for me using the Honey Bee Block from Why Not Sew?.  Have a look at the tutorial...  All those little honey bees are hand appliqued! 
She even hand quilted this cover for me!

She also sent along some blue and purple scraps for my Feather Quilt project.  
And some paper pieces to make the Spring Carnival pattern, a pattern that is on my 'short' to do list.
Spoiled?  Yes.

Then last, but not at all least because I was really really hoping this swap package would be for me, my Scrappy Swap package arrived. 
I had asked for something very specific in this swap - a hoop that I could hang in the kid's bedroom since I now have an other half to decorate.  I wasn't too picky about what should be on it, only that it was relatively gender neutral because we don't know if #2 is a boy or a girl.  
My partner, Karen, really pulled through on this one, not only with the hoop she made for me, but also with the scraps she sent!


Yes, those are goldfish in bags, some Nursery Versery, some text prints, some Echo stuck in on the side, some dots, some bikes, some Lizzy House... I love every one of the scraps she sent.  And she was very generous too as we are required to send a FQ of scraps and these pieces all unfolded make well over a FQ. 

The hoop was much bigger than I thought it would be, and the houses are so perfectly embroidered.

Yup, it was definitely a good mail week. 

Oh, and no worries, I do have something else to show you.  I didn't only open mail this week, I sewed a bit too.  But I'm not quite done yet, so that's for another day.

Monday, December 3, 2012

a bit of this

Did you know that today is Giveaway Day over at Sew Mama Sew?  There are 5 categories of giveaways - so many blogs and so much stuff being given away!  I participated last year, but opted out this year.  Instead of having a 'mass' giveaway, I am planning to have a follower giveaway within the next 2 months.  
Lucky you who follow me.

I actually had a very productive weekend.  Well, weekend is a bit of a stretch, it was more of a day.  Saturday.  I finished piecing together all the hexy flowers for the Hexy MF last week and on Saturday I crawled around on the floor with my 9 month pregnant belly basting the hexies to the quilt top fabric.  My husband kept looking over at me as I grunted and huffed and puffed my way up and down and around.  

But it's basted and I've already secured one side to the fabric!  At least the stitching part I can do while sitting.  
I might even get this quilt done this year!  
One question for you then - 

How would you quilt this?  
Hand quilt?  
Bring it to a quilter?  
Organic straight lines?  
Swirls of some sort?  

Really, I have no idea and could really use some suggestions.

On Flickr, I had posted a picture that I was ISO blue and purple scraps.  Some wonderful Flickr people helped me out and swapped with me for some of their scrap stash.  
This is what is becoming of those scraps. 

I'm making a feather quilt from Anna Maria Horner's pattern.

Originally, I had intended it to be for little D, but now I think she will be gifted the Hexy MF (hubby thinks it's too pink for our bed - I might agree from his point of view) and this might be a long-in-the-making quilt for us.  That means I will have to find a lot more scraps. 

Making feathers from scraps is a lot more time consuming than making them with strips.  I have to make each piece separately because most of the scraps are not long enough to piece together and then cut in bulk.
So far, I'm okay with that though.  I like the idea that no feather will be the same as another, and yet, they will all be blue and purple.
I was thinking of doing a gray stem and putting it all together with something like Kona Champagne. 

Or I'll just have to buy some fat eighths off Etsy along with some scrap packs... 

Or find some more people to swap with... 

Wanna swap with me?

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

pillows, a skirt, and a list

Is it really Wednesday today? I thought for some reason that it was Tuesday.  But Wednesday is a good day.  

My mom is moving into her new house next month and we're all excited for her.  She's been living in an old drafty house for the last bunch of years so this is a big step up for her. She's been busy choosing paint, light fixtures, flooring, curtains - all the fun stuff that comes with a new house.  
I thought her living room pillows needed an update as well, cuz, you know, they just won't match the 'new' anymore.  
So she and I went out to Fabricland last week and she picked out some fabrics for me to play with.  Her living room area is a cream colour with a rusty red/orange accent wall, so these fabrics fit perfectly.  She also didn't want complicated piecing or quilting on the covers, just simple stripes.  

First I did simple vertical stripes. 

Then I tried some angled stripes, but I think I like the vertical better.  I have three more covers to make and about three weeks left to do them in.  
I'll make it.  They'll get done since they're pretty simple and I can finish one up in an evening.
They will all have a hidden zipper closure on the back.  They are so easy to do I wish I had discovered earlier how to do the zipper thing for pillows.  It turns out way nicer than envelope style I think because with envelope style, sometimes the opening can gape just a little and it doesn't look as neat.  I followed this tutorial at Sew Mama Sew.

In the clothing department, I had an order for a skirt to finish up.  Just got it done this morning and I love how it turned out! 

It's the first time I made this pattern and I love it.  I might have to make it a regular in my shop, if there's enough interest.  
The pattern is the Aubrey Skirt from Sadie James Patterns on Etsy.  The only change I made was to the waistband.  Instead of measuring the waist and cutting the elastic for a personalized fit, I made it fully adjustable with buttonhole elastic.  For the rest, the pattern was super easy to follow and it only took me an evening and a morning to make.
For the next skirt though, I might use less than 40" widths worth of fabric as that makes it almost a little too full. 

I was also thinking the other night about what I all want to have finished before this baby comes.  
Ummm, my list is a little bigger than I thought!  Not bigger with stuff, just the stuff on it is big.

Just in case this one is a boy, I wanted to have a boy quilt done.  All I have right now is the fabric on a stack.  
I wanted to have the hexie playmat done, but it is being woefully ignored, for the past few months in fact.  I have a few hexies yet to piece on to the top and then I have to make a little 'quilt' out of it.
I want to have the Hexy MF top all pieced together.  I am almost done that, just have to put two more rows together and the hexy part is done.
And lastly, I wanted to have a toddler sized quilt for D finished so that her 'big' bed might be a little more attractive.  

At the rate I'm going, only the Hexy MF top will get done.  
No matter, I would rather the baby come a little sooner than get done all the things on my list.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Canadian Blogathon!


 Hello to all who are here via Blogathon Canada hosted by Sew Sisters Quilt Shop

I'm Deanna and I really still don't consider myself a quilter as I haven't finished one big quilt yet.  Almost, but not quite.
I don't know what to call myself then as I do play around with quilting and paper piecing and all that other quilty stuff.  I started with sewing clothes for my little girl and from there I discovered Flickr and well, that was the end of my 'lone' sewing!  I found so many inspiring quilters and soon became a blog follower and then a blogger.

So welcome to my little space.

It also happens to be Wednesday... but I have no new WIP's, only one big continuing one.
Hexy MF.

My carpet is not kid proof and little D got hold of chalk paint one day... hence the black smudge.

The bigger this top gets, the harder it gets to piece!  It takes up my whole lap and it a little difficult to manage when I have to match up sides without having them pull away.

And I know I said no more swaps until after the baby, but really, I can't not sew something!  And swaps are the perfect opportunity for me to make something I wouldn't normally make, like a mug rug.

This is for the Modern Scrappy Bits Swap - we have to swap a FQ's worth of modern scraps and a handmade item.
I stalked my partner and she had a bunch of mosaics made for other swaps so I think I figured out pretty good what to make for her.  

Now I have been a bit of a negligent blogger lately due to lack of activity and motivation, and that got me thinking about why I blog.  

If you are a blogger, why do you blog?  
I came to the conclusion that I do it for selfish reasons.  I want to have a place where I can occasionally get some feedback about the things I make.

If you are a blog follower, why?  
I follow blogs because I love to see what other people are up to and get new ideas and see styles that are similar but different from my own. 

So, I'm curious, what are your reasons for blogging or following?

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Here's the second... (needed a different URL for linking). 

I like lime green and purple together so I started with those solids and then I ended up adding some blue.  Again the grays are there because I cannot leave them out.  Really, they just jumped right in!
A name...?
Calmed Down.

a contest

Let me start by saying that I am not very confident in my colour coordinating abilities. 
My wardrobe is mostly solids or 'blenders' for tops mixed with jeans or black bottoms.
My walls are all cream coloured and then I simply add whatever I like for decor, whether it actually matches or not.
When choosing fabric, I generally stick to fabrics from the same line as I am really not sure about mixing patterns and colours.

That being said, this is a bit of a step out for me.  

Sew Lux Fabric is having a contest on their blog called the Guest Curator Contest.
I hesitated, but I am entering two mosaics.  They are slightly similar in that I kept the two gray prints and the purple solid.  I'm not very daring.

I am currently dreaming up a quilt for my daughter that is made with blue and purple fabrics.  So for this one, I started with the blues and purples.  Then I thought to pull in some pinks for the girly factor and add some grays because I absolutely love gray and it keeps things balanced.

Let's call it The Quilt.

How'd I do?

Thursday, November 8, 2012

something got done

It would seem that I am becoming a once a week blogger. 
I can only blame that on lack of 'stuff' happening around here.  Really, I do more sitting and hand stitching hexies or reading than anything lately.  Oh, and baking, because there's something about having cake in the evenings that I simply can't resist.

I do have some finishes to share though.

I finished some dress orders - no pictures of the dresses, but trust me, I have one completed, one cut and on the go and one, well, ready to cut.

I am a sucker for scraps, and though I said no more swaps until after the baby comes, I just had to get in on the Scrappy Swap.  We are trading a FQ's worth of scraps and a handmade item that's been made with scraps.  I love that part - it really forces me to look at my own scraps differently and then create something worth giving from them!  

I've seen Anna Maria Horner's feathers floating around Flickr and Pinterest and just knew I had to try one.  This was the perfect opportunity.
I pulled scraps that had pinks and purples and blues and after a few tries, I this came off the ironing board.

And, I am proud to say, I resisted the temptations of my stash and did everything with scraps.  
I turned the feather into a pouch.  I am not 100% happy with how my zipper turned out this time.  I skipped the fabric tabs on the ends and I regret having done that as it messed with my mind and broke three of my needles.

In any case, this feather pouch along with a good size FQ of scraps will be off to my partner next week.  Oh, and there is a surprise in the lining...

As of this morning, I am also finished with my Stack n Whack quilt top.  On Sunday, I saw that one of the friends I had attended this class with was already finished her top and that gave me the push I needed to finally get my act together.

Not a great picture, but really, taking pictures of quilt tops seems a little difficult to do alone.  You get the idea anyway.  I also had just enough of the purple fabric to cut enough for binding.  

All that's left is getting a backing and bringing it in to the quilter.  

Hehe, I say that's all that's left, but it might be a long time before that happens.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

WIP Wednesday

I'm not very consistent in posting my WIP's, especially not on Wednesdays, but hey, I actually have something to show this time!

I have never taken any kind of quilting class, and most of what I learned, I learned online from blogs and other great quilters.  But, this past Monday, two friends and myself participated in Stack n Whack class at a local quilt shop.  I went not just to learn something, but mostly for the fun.  And we had a lot of fun since it turned out it was just the three of us there that day.  

I also got something started.

We had to find a fabric with a 12" repeat and I found this one from Pat Bravo called Fashion Mood in Bright from her Bespoken line.  I paired it up with her coordinating solid and ended up with these blocks.

I will admit, that on Monday I only got 4 blocks done and I made another sewing day out of yesterday and finished off the other 4.  I also have the triangles cut and just have to piece the top together and add borders and I'm finished the top.  

I'm also still plugging away at my Hexy MF quilt.  So far I've pieced together two strips for the top.  

Kinda nice that I can piece this together from the comforts of my rocking chair.  It does get a little clumsy since the strips as slightly stiff with the papers and they are pretty long. 

Coming along nicely though!  Just this stack left... 

I also have some dresses to make as a result of the tradeshow I attended last Saturday.  I've started cutting them, but was gone so far this week so I didn't really pay much attention to them yet.

I'm also still working on this one too!  


32 weeks and counting

Don't you just love self photos?

Wednesday, October 17, 2012


A post of updates here - all for projects that were started and are now finished - yay! 

First, I want to show you a picture of our little girl wearing the new shirt I made for her.  Turns out it fit her perfectly and looked gorgeous in all our family photos.

I am in love with this little girl and this picture.

I also finished my Modernista swap project.  A little iffy putting it up now because if my swap partner sees this she will absolutely know it's for her.  But I don't think she hangs around my blog at all, and I really want to share!

My partner really wanted a table cloth and her table was not too big, so I thought "I can do that."  
And I did.

Main fabrics are all Lou Lou Thi sashing and backing is Essex Linen.
I did a very simple design because some of the Lou Lou Thi prints are so large it's only fair to show them off as they are.  In the centre, I embroidered part of the Lord's Prayer, "Give us this day our daily bread." The embroidery would have worked better I think if I'd had some perle, but I only had floss, and there's no one local who sells perle.  

For the small items, I made some hotpads that have owl fabric for backing and the bunting I had made to fit over her window.

The second swap item I finished is the pillow cover for the Pillow Talk Swap.
My partner is so completely silent, I wonder sometimes if she is real.  No comments, no photos, nothing!  

Anyway, based on her mosaic these are colours she likes and she stated in her form that she liked geometric designs.  So here we have it.

Three 6inch hexagons with echo quilting, three rows of yellow pindot piping, and three smaller hexagons on three strips of Kona Coal.  Seems pretty geometric to me.  
Because the one side of the pillow is so densely quilted, I chose to do nothing around the small hexies - just the subtle lines of the strips pieced together.

It will fit a 20inch form, and I only had an 18inch form, so the cover is not stuffed well in these photos.  Too bad for that, because I would have loved to have seen this cover in all it's, um, 'glory'.

 That's it for swaps for me this year as I should be getting ready for the baby's arrival.
Only 10 more weeks!

Saturday, October 6, 2012

a shirt for D

I made a shirt. For little D. She wasn't as excited about this shirt as she was about the dress I made for her. I think she likes dresses better. 

Lucky for her, I know that she cannot only have dresses, but she needs some tops to go with her jeans and skirts, which she also loves.

 D has a shirt that I love, but it is too small, so I tried to copy the style for this one.  It's a pretty close copy, the main difference being that there are less pin tucks on the front of this one and I didn't add bias tape and buttons on the cuffs.

I used some fabric I'd been hoarding for who knows how long, knowing again that I wanted to make something for D with it.  It's from Amy Butler's Love collection, Water Bouquet in Midnight.  

I love the deep colours.

Since I had no pattern for the shirt, I just mashed together a collared button up pattern with my own modifications - the pin tucks, no collar, long sleeves, button placket (which worked waaaay better than on the dress), and slits on the bottom sides.

For some added shape, I also put a bit of elastic in a casing and sewed to the inside of the back. 

D reluctantly tried the shirt on for me, so I think it fits good, but she wasn't cooperating very well and refused to stand.  Thus the wall pictures.
Anyone getting sick of my wall?

I hope this shirt does fit as good as I think because we have family pics this afternoon and I'd love for her to wear this.  With her blond hair and the fall backdrop, I think it would look good.