Saturday, October 31, 2015

Found A Quick Way To Make My Shower Curtain Quilt

   So I'm sewing along on my tote bag projects and watching videos on the computer and I found a great way to make quilty shower curtain.  I love the Big Star quilt pattern and last year I made a quilt using the pattern.  I made the stars with 10" and 5" squares.  So easy and so much fun to make.  This is a picture of the quilt top before I sandwiched it.


   So I went stash diving yesterday to find big pieces of fabrics to cut 20" squares for my shower curtain star.  My star measures 52" x 52".  I'm going to add borders to make it bigger.  I want it to measure  at least 68 x 68".  To finish it I will add a backing fabric, do some straight line quilting, and put 12 buttonholes at the top to hang it.  Not a good picture, but it's not finished yet.  



   I finished all my tote bags.  I made four of them.  Super fun and really useful.  It was kind of hard for me to get a picture of all of them together.  Now I have some tote bags that match my bedroom curtains.  Fun stuff.

     

   I also finished my potholders that will be my hostess gift for Thanksgiving dinner.

  
    




Replacing Old Hand Sewing Needles

   I have had my collection of hand sewing needles for years and I think some of them are older than me because I inherited some from Great Aunt Margaret's sewing box.

   It's time to get new, sharper hand sewing needles.  Funny, I never thought of them getting dull like a machine needle does.

   I just purchased a large variety of hand sewing needles from Amazon.com including some self threading needles.  Amazon.com carries a nice selection of brands and I ended up getting several different sets, but the one I'm most happy about is the John James 100 needle assortment.




Thursday, October 29, 2015

Super Cute Quilt Pattern Purchase

  I saw this pattern for this Argyle Runner at Connecting Threads and I had to have it.  It is super cute and I can picture it in lots of different color combinations.



  Here is the link to the pattern page.   There is also an argyle quilt pattern that has thicker sashing strips.  

   I'm putting a new project on my to do list.  I want to make a scrappy quilt top shower curtain from my stash fabrics.  I will quilt the top to a backing without any batting and add buttonholes in the top to hang it from the hooks.  I already have a vinyl liner so I don't have to worry about it getting wet when I shower.  I measured my tub opening and I can make my shower curtain quilt about 72" by 72".  I just have to decide what size to cut my scraps.

   I also found this cool youtube tutorial for a simple quilt with applique squares onto a background fabric so it looks like you pieced it.  It's super cute and it's called The Quick Little Block Quilt.  Here is the link to the tutorial.  Ms. Laura Coia has a lot of youtube sewing tutorials.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Glowing Dining Room Curtains

   So I finished the dining room curtain panels yesterday.  I made all 6 in one day.  It was a triumph of spirit.  I ironed them this morning and hung them.  You can see from the picture I took about an hour ago that with the light coming through they fairly glow.   One day  I will find a paler yellow to make lots of curtains out of but until then these will have to do because I'm not going to waste the money I paid for this fabric.



  Speaking of paying a lot of money for something, yesterday I mailed my Secret Santa Swap package to Western Australia.  The person I sent this package to knows she will get a package but she doesn't know where it will come from or who will send it.  It's a fun game, or at least it was a fun game until I found out the price of postage yesterday.  To send a 12" x 12" x 10" box that weighs 6 lbs. 2.9 oz., from Florida to Western Australia cost me $72.30.  Ouch!  That's a lot money.  I sure hope that box arrives safely because I can not afford to replace it.  I did volunteer to send international this year but I didn't expect the shipping to cost over $50.00.  If I had known shipping was going to cost that much I would have sent a smaller package with the required four fat quarters and a few smaller items.

   I have my fabric cut to make my 4 tote bags and a couple of potholders.   I was invited to have Thanksgiving dinner with some friends and I thought a couple of homemade potholders would make a nice hostess gift.   So I'll be sewing up the tote bags and potholders over the rest of the week.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Curtains and Tote Bags

   I haven't broken out my new quilt project yet.  I want to finish up my ugly yellow cotton curtains first.  I finished the living room curtains.  You can see the bright yellow behind Merlin's head in the picture below.  They didn't turn out like I wanted, but they will do until I find something I like better. I thought the yellow would have been softer, more pale, but it is really YELLOW! and you should see it when the sun shines through in the evenings.  I have to make 6 more panels for the dining room which I will finish this week.

   Merlin is sitting on my sewing extension table for my Janome 7700.  He likes to sit there when I'm on the computer.  This morning he was concentrating on doing a mind meld with me and telling me to go into the kitchen to turn on the faucet so he can drink and get wet.  He puts the side of his face under the light stream of water and lets the water run into his mouth.  His face is all wet when he finishes.  That's the highlight of his cat day.


  After I finish the dining room curtains, I'm going to make four tote bags using Crafty Gemini's Must Have Tote Bag pattern.  I bought it for $3.00 from her website.  Here is a link to the pattern page.  It comes with .pdf instructions you can print out and a video.  These tote bags are super fun to make.  I have about 4 that I keep in my car for groceries and I make them for gifts as well.  The pattern calls for a thicker fabric like decorator cotton and I have some fabric leftover from my bedroom drapes that I'm using to make three of them and I also have a yard of decorator cotton that I bought in the spring to make another.

   I packed up my secret Santa package this morning to take to the post office.  Boy I wish I were getting this box.  I sent my secret pal a quilting book (It's Quilting Cats and Dogs by Lynnette Anderson), a wool pincushion I made, some pretty pearl topped pins, 4 - 1/2 yard cuts of fall fabric, 4 1/2 yard cuts of Christmas fabric, 5 colorful fat quarters, a spool of thread, buttons, ribbon, cat charms, a pocket calendar, a journal, a pack of post it notes, a small Boyds Bear, a Christmas kitchen towel set, and the cute scrappy Christmas stocking I made.  This package has to go all the way to Western Australia.  I hope it gets there okay.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Quilt Show at Stephen C. Foster Folk Culture Center State Park

   Yesterday my daughter and I drove over to White Springs, Florida to the Stephen C. Foster Folk Culture Center State Park to view the local quilt show.  We packed a picnic and a picnic quilt and we were off.  It was a beautiful day in North Florida.

   This park is located on the banks of the Suwannee River and it is named for the songwriter Stephen C. Foster.  Here is a link to the park website:  Stephen C. Foster Folk and Culture Center State Park Link.  There is a 97 bell carillon in this park that chimes on the hour, quarter hour and half hour.  It also plays Stephen Foster songs.  It's one of the highlights of the park.  Here is a picture of the tower I took yesterday.  That sky couldn't have been more blue.


    The Suwannee River yesterday afternoon:



   There was a display of quilts made by Kaffe Fassett in one building that was fun to see.  So much color.

   Here are some of the pretty quilts I saw yesterday that were competing for best in show.  The judging is done by the attendees with ballots filled out walking through the show.  I would have had a hard time finding best in show yesterday.














Thursday, October 15, 2015

I Found A Use For Some Old Scrap Wood And A Broken Bird Bath

   Last week I was cleaning my old iron bird bath and the base kind of fell apart.  The screws had rusted and pieces had fallen off the base so I couldn't keep the bowl fastened to it anymore.  I replaced it with a bird bath from the front yard and bought a new bird bath for the front flower bed.

    I was going to take the broken bird bath to the iron scrap place and get a few dollars just so it wouldn't be left in the yard with no purpose.  While I was trying to decide whether I wanted to scrap the entire bird bath or use it as yard art, I saw a pile of scrap wood left over from a fence support project done a while back.  

   These pieces of wood are fat and no piece is the same length so I had fun putting them together to make a base for my old bird bath bowl.  I was going to use some adhesive to put it together, but I realized the base would too heavy for me to move and it works great with the pieces just stacked together on a level place under the trees.  I hope the birds like it.






 

Saturday, October 10, 2015

New Bedroom Curtains

  I finally finished my floral bedroom curtains.  I love this fabric and all the pink and green that is going on here.  They were fun to make and super quick.


 

Super Quick Sewing Machine Service

     This past Wednesday I took Martha, my Bernina 1530, in to the shop for a service and to have the electrical cord fixed.  I wasn't expecting it back for a couple of weeks at the earliest, but on Thursday I received a call that my machine was ready for pick up and it was fixed.  That's what I call super quick service.  I picked the machine up yesterday.

    This machine has a retracting electrical cord which I love.  When I finish using the machine and want to move it, I just push a button in the back of the machine and the electrical cord retracts into the machine.  It's a neat feature.  The foot pedal cord does the same thing.  I never have to worry about losing either cord for this machine.

    Martha and her new cord.


  The machine cord and the foot pedal cord all tucked in.


    Close up of the foot pedal cord retracted.



   I'm hanging my bedroom curtains today (finished them last night) and I am getting ready to cut that lovely yellow fabric for the dining room and living room curtains.

   I'm also going to make a scissor pouch for my big, expensive Gingher scissors.  I found this youtube tutorial to make this cute pouch.  Scissor pouch tutorial link here.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Recycled Garden Windchime

   I found this cool wind chime made with recycled kitchen items on etsy.  I had to have it.  The silverware has a great sound when the breeze blows.




Curtain Project

    I'm making new curtains for my dining room, living room, and bedroom.  When I moved into this house I bought ready made curtains because I didn't have time to make them myself, but now I have the time and I purchased some fun fabric to make them.

    This floral will go into the bedroom.  I currently have some dark green drapes in there and it makes the room really dark.  This fabric will definitely lighten up my bedroom.

 



    This fabric will go into the dining room and living room.  I can't wait to see it when the sun shines into it.



      I took Martha, my Bernina 1530, in for a check up at the local Bernina store.  I haven't had her serviced since spring 2011.  I've asked them to check the electrical cord.  There is a short in her electrical cord and sometimes when the cord is moved or jostled the machine turns off, then I have to jostled the cord some more to get the right position for it to turn on and then reset my settings.  So I hope the tech can fix this problem.  I should be getting her back in a couple of weeks.  

Pinwheel Quilt is Finished.



   Here is my pinwheel quilt.  It's about 50" x 50" and I did straight line quilting on it.  I love the colors.

   The front:



   The back;




Monday, October 5, 2015

Quilting The Chevron Quilt and It's Finished

   I spent a few hours quilting and binding my colorful chevron quilt top.  I love the orange and white backing and binding materials I used.  I think orange is my new favorite color.  I did fun loopy free motion quilting on it.

Merlin, my big boy cat, had to inspect it while I took a break.





Friday, October 2, 2015

Super Potholders To Give Away To My Favorite Daughter

   I finished four potholders for dear daughter this afternoon.  They are really thick, I used a layer of Insul-Bright and a layer of cotton batting along with the six pieces of cotton fabric that this pattern calls for.  I used the youtube video tutorial you find here.  They make nice potholders.


Thursday, October 1, 2015

Starting My Pinwheel Quilt

I sewed all my half square triangles pieces together to make my pinwheel quilt.  The next step is making my pinwheel blocks.


     Chain piecing fun.




Ready for assembly.


Round Hotpads

    My dear daughter needs new potholders, so I started out by making a couple of round hotpads for her kitchen.   These hot pads were super easy to make, I cut a 9 inch circle out using my Easy
Circle ruler.  I used a layer of Insul-Brite and a layer of cotton batting between my fabric pieces, I did a simple straight line quilting and I bound them with bias binding.  I love the scrappy puppy fabric and she will too.



   When I get some more Insul-Brite I'll be making some square potholders for her.