Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Sweet Day

 Yesterday I took a vacation day to accomplish a few things on my to do list at home.  One of which was to get started on my "Wicked" project.  Here is how I started my day. Just a sneak peek is all you get.  I like how my spooky eyes turned out...but whose are they do you suppose??? You will have to come back on Friday, October 26th to find the answer to that question.  That is the day I will be participating in the Wicked Blog hop put on by Wendy.
Next up was getting my raffle blanket machine quilted.  The due date is October 17th and since I want all my fellow employees to sign it, I need to have it done early.  I always dread the finishing process.  I hate layering the batting between the layers.  I can't stand that you can't see the bottom layer once you put the pieces together.  I certainly don't want wrinkles in the back.  Yesterday that process went very smoothly. No pun intended.  Maybe part of it was a new choice in batting. I'm not sure.  I used this new product and hope it continues to amaze me as it has so far.  It is the first time I have pre-washed a batting.  The bag says it could be quilted up to 8 inches apart which is a feature I like.  While many people quilt all over with inch by inch coverage, I think the quilt is so much softer and friendlier to use when quilting is farther apart.  I also am not the biggest fan of the wrinkles that happen when you wash the quilt so although this product reported a mere 2 to 3 percent shrinkage it also said it could be preshrunk.  I just had to soak the batting for 20 minutes in hot water and then wring dry and tumble dry in the dryer.  This is the part I find scary and have never attempted but it worked very well.  It came out of the dryer in one piece    ( which was a huge bonus!!!)  I had no problem with the layering of the project and it quilted very nicely with no bearding at all.   I did have a bobbin tension problem that took me a good hour to take care of.  Arrrrgh....I had to clean the dust bunnies out of there three times to get them all and after many attempts to change the bobbin tension with no luck finally just gave up and switched bobbins.  Should have started there because I think that was the winner, winner, chicken dinner. I got the project about 80 percent quilted not bad for the first day and will finish it today.  Speaking of winner, winner look what I won recently.  My grand daughter who is four was here this weekend when it arrived and she immediately thought the pincushion would make a great pillow for her bear who was also spending the night with us. I will have to make her one as this is definitely for my collection. I love it.  The charm pack is my first EVER.  It has a wonderful collection of fabrics in it and look forward to putting it to good use.
Don't you just love the fabrics that were in this charm pack???   I want to thank Elizabeth of pieceful life for the wonderful things she offered in her giveaway. The book was also a first for me and I have been wanting to read one of these quilting novels for a long time.  I started it last night with a glass of wine and a hot bath and it was the perfect way to end my  sweet day.
I can only hope day two of my my mini vacation 'ME' time goes as well.  Hope you are having a great day, too.  Hugs,

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Wicked Good Times Ahead

I am happy to have finally bit the bullet and joined my first blog hop!  I'm excited to be able to put my wicked thoughts to good use on this one.   Lions, tigers and bears, oh my...Witches, warlocks, what will I try???  Wendy from Why Knot Kwilt has invited us to share our dark or deliciously wicked sides Oct 22nd-31st.  It will also be a chance for me to find something wonderful to giveaway.  Now I will have to dare to be spooky. What wickedly, wacky, wonderful thing will I dare to do??? Stay tuned.....

Friday, September 7, 2012

See Saw Swap Block Progress this week

I thought I would share the method behind the madness with my partner's block this week.  I am putting the second round of the Ghastlie tree on her quilt and am sharing a little of how I am doing it.  This is my first tutorial and by no means the best teaching tool but here goes. This is how the block ended at round one.
Sharon added a border and sent it back and I needed to add round two of my Ghastlie tree.  I had originally enlarged a ghastlie tree print from a picture of one and blew it up very large on a piece of Christmas wrapping paper.  Here is a picture of what was left of the pattern after round one.
The center is the area where I cut out the size of Sharon's original block plus the area I used to make the first tree border.  Now I needed to cut out the size of Sharon's added border.  Which was 2 1/2", so I first drew a line at that width on the paper and then another at 3" out from there so my finished border will be another 2 1/2" when completed.
Then I cut that area out that I needed to be my border. Here is where the fun begins. I  need to look at it  and decide how I could paper piece each area and put it back together again.
 Here is what I came up with. I know as I move them around I may get the order wrong so here is my solution.
I add the A - B- C - D- E- F -G -H labels to the patterns so I can have a reference how this goes back together.  After that I just paper piece each part, trim , and sew it all back together.
I like to start each piece by cutting the approximate size of fabric I need.  With paper piecing you want to make the pieces larger than the area you are covering.  It does waste a lot of fabric compared to conventional rotary cut pieces but I love what it allows me to create and for me it is worth the extra fabric it takes to create that look.  Because in paper piecing you will be creating a mirror image and I want the exact image I will need to be doing the sewing on the bottom side of the paper and putting the fabric on the top.  I just flipped the pieces over and drew my pattern on that side.  If it was difficult to see the pattern I could take it to a window and use the light to trace the pattern on the reverse side, but since I used a sharpie it was a pretty easy task.

Next I just started building my pieces.  After each addition of fabric I just trimmed the fabric giving me my 1/4" seam allowance. I do this each time by just folding back the pattern and trimming the fabrics to a quarter inch by just estimating it like so.

If you rather you can always use your rulers to trim fabrics back to the quarter inch but I like to speed the process up and just trim it to an approximate 1/4", if you prefer you can always use your ruler like so.
When I got each piece completed I just added a quarter inch to each of the sides I will be sewing back together to make my border strip.  Since I cut my pattern at 3" width I don't add the 1/4" inch to the top and bottom sides each time.
I must say this is the first time I have paper pieced using Christmas wrap. I did it out of necessity due to the size of the pattern when I enlarged it but I highly recommend it.  It tears off so easily when it comes to that step.  I have used tissue paper, cheap drawing pad paper, all kinds of quilt tear away papers and none remove as easy as this xmas wrapping paper.  I usually run my tissue paper through the copy machine but with this project I just drew it directly on the paper so the wrapping paper was a great choice.
Once I had them all made and sewn together my border looked like this.  I put it and the other side on to get this far.
I've added the last two borders to the top and bottom and sent it out to my partner.  But she and you will have to wait to see the rest.  Just a peek for now, I hope she loves it as much as I do.  I can't wait to add my next go round onto the block, this has been one fun project to work on. See you soon Ghastlie block, I have a lot of work to do to get ready for my final turn at you :)  Looking forward to seeing you again.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Wonderous Winnings
Here is some fabric I won a while back during one of the blog hops.  I won it from Sew Allegorical and thought it would come in very handy for my Halloween See Swap Block.  I have used the orange stars in it and the rest may have to wait for another project. I love the colors in this collection and am so thankful to Al for sharing it with me. She is fabric-oholic and I appreciate her sharing some of her Halloween stash with me.
This is the fab-tastic Pearadise FQ bundle I won when Sonja was born from her mom Bea and Connecting Threads.  I must say I was very impressed with Connecting threads service.  I had the fabric in just two days.  It helps that they are close to me and I fell in love with the fabric.  Funny how they always look so much better close up and personal.  It too had one fat quarter that was immediately put to use in my See Saw swap block.  I used the yellow cross hatched one in it.  I was pleasantly surprised with the quality of the fabric.  Connecting Threads has fabulous prices and I must say I think this line is a very good collection of fabric and look forward to finding where the rest of the fat quarters will end up being used.  Check them out:
Aren't the pears so cute?
Keep Stitchin'
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...