Friday, September 30, 2011

Talkin' about DS

So, any of my blog readers who have been reading me for a while probably know that I am a big fan of Denyse Schmidt's fabrics.  I first fell in love when I became acquainted with her line Flea Market Fancy, which has been bought, traded and coveted by many sewers over the last few years.  We begged and begged for a reprint and now it is finally happening.  The sads news though is that there will be less than half of the original two collections in the reprint.  And a few of the favorites, at least my favorites, like blue eyelets and blue leaves will not be in the reprint.  However, there will be two new ones added to the mix--grey posies and grey leaves!  And there will be grey eyelets again as well.  You can find a link for the photo of the ones to be reprinted here.

Denyse Schmidt has also had some new lines out with Jo-Ann's and Spotlight (here in Australia) called Picnic and Fairgrounds, Sugar Creek, Winding Road (exclusive to Spotlight)  and new to be released next month Salty Aire (exclusive to Spotlight).  You can find the sneak peak for Salty Aire here

I can tell you that I am excited that we are getting so many fabrics from Denyse.   Her fabrics are usually my first picks from my fabric stash.  So, it is no surprise that I decided that signing up for my very first doll quilt swap that it should be the Denyse Schmidt Doll Quilt Swap!  I pulled these fabrics out from my stash this morning with the intention of making a mini circle of geese quilt for my partner.  I reduced the paper piecing pattern I have to doll size and plan to make 4 circles.  This will be my first attempt at making anything so small!!!  LOL.  That will be something new for me!!!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Caned Seat Quilt Mini

Ok, so last week I had been thinking that I had so much fun with the paper piecing for the geese in a ring block that I thought I would do a little bit more paper piecing.  I found this idea looking through Flickr and the link to make these blocks here.  They are called Caned Seat.  Hmmm...  if anyone was thinking that geese in a ring is a bit of a pain to construct, these blocks blow that right out of the water.  No, they are not more difficult to make, it's just that there are 10 pieces per block.  You are looking at 40 different segments here.  I started out thinking I was actually going to make a quilt with Erin McMorris's Summersault prints.  I made one block with her pink and green fabrics and thought I would add blue and orange blocks in and alternate.  I didn't think it looked very good though.  Actually, I don't really feel these fabrics were the right choice for this design full stop, but they were in front of me asking to be cut and I just went for it.  Anyway, rather than carry on I decided this will make a nice mini quilt around 30 inches square.  If I do this pattern again I will chose the fabrics very differently.  I do like the Kona Bahama Blue and Pacific border though... 

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Spring Time!

Time keeps ticking, I'm not getting much sewing done these days as we are spending more and more time outdoors.  Spring is the busiest time on the farm and the boys live for being outside.  It was nice for me during lambing/calving time that my husband could take Alexander with him around the animals in the mornings.  They would go together and feed out the hay to the cows and ride around on the bike or in the truck to check the mobs.  We are finished with that and now onto other pressing jobs in preparation for shearing time.  I'm also trying to prepare for the arrival of the long arm which should be early November at this point!!  It couldn't come at a busier time, but oh well, every day seems busy when you have two boys aged one and two!!!  I am posting a few shots of Oliver posing his gorgeous knitwear from his great aunt and the boys riding their truck together.  They did this on their own and that is what makes it especially nice--they are slowly starting to play together more and more.  And can I just tell you that the volume levels in the house are getting higher and higher too?  Hope you are all having a good weekend:)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The World's Luckiest Swap Recipient!

Ok, so today my package arrived from my secret partner (Uberstitch -- Pam) for The Love of Solids Swap.  I have to admit that since I was so specific about my tastes and desires for this swap that once I saw the picture from Pam I suspected, hoped, crossed all my fingers at once and stalked the post box looking out for it!  I kept going back to Flickr checking her photo, showing my husband and so wanting it to be mine.  I knew from the first second I saw the photo that I would hang it in this particular spot in my kitchen if the size was right.  You see, I've been searching and searching for a piece of artwork to put into this spot in my kitchen since we moved in 5 years ago, but nothing seemed right.  I had a calendar here (up until today) but that was always a temporary plan.  I just had to post lots of pictures to show how perfectly it fits into my house!  I love it so so much and it will be seen and admired every day as this is the busiest area of our house.  I feel very lucky to have had such an artistic partner that not only is creative but can execute perfection in her work.  It is truly a stunning piece that has to be seen in person to know its true worth.  So, Pam, if you are reading this, thank you!!!  In addition she sent an amazingly beautiful needle book that is very much needed and will be used.  She also included some beautiful Denyse Schmidt fabric as an extra (I forgot to include a picture) and this lovely card which I love for its inspirational quote from George Elliot.  I truly am the luckiest swap recipient!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

September Sew Australia Blocks for Kristy

Yesterday I finished this month's Sew Australia Bee Blocks for September for Kristy at HandmadeRetro.   She came up with a lovely design for her Circa50 fabrics.  The potential quilt will look similar to the second photograph shown above.   I have these fabrics as well and as of yet have not decided what I will make with them--this is an awesome idea and I will be checking on her progress!  She chose her design to suit the time period of these fabrics which I think was rather cool.  You can check out her awesome tutorial for these blocks here.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Geese in a Ring Swap --- All Flying Together Now

I finished all my Geese in a Ring for the swap this morning.  I really enjoyed making these blocks even though there is quite a long process that goes into each one.  By the last couple of blocks I was rocking them out in about three quarters of an hour--so they definitely get easier to do as you go along.  I wanted to finish quickly so that I can sign up for the next round.  We only need two more people to sign up to make the next round a go!  Maybe you?  Visit Ann here and let her know you are interested!!!  Go on!  You know you want to try it;)

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Geese in a Ring Swap

I've been busy paper piecing the last couple of days as I joined up for yet another swap called Geese in the Ring.  We have to make 8 blocks in each person's choice colors and will be given our choice color blocks by the other members when everyone is finished. Ann is still taking applicants for future rounds here, if you are interested in joining up.  I've never done paper piecing before and this was a lot of fun to learn.  I'm on roll too!  Not sure what I'm going to do with these blocks, but the top block here is the one I made for myself as a test block.  I requested rainbow so it will be interesting to see how they all end up looking!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

For The Love of Solids Swap

Ok, so I've been holed up in my sewing room since Wednesday and have used every spare moment that I've had to work on my For the Love of Solids swap.  The fabrics I ordered only arrived on Wednesday and took over a month to arrive.  I tried out several ideas for this swap, but none of them really worked as I knew the colors were not right--the Kona solids I had on hand were so few and didn't work well together. 

Can I just tell you that I am having a proud moment with the finish of this swap?  This is why...  A few weeks ago, I suddenly changed my game plan after seeing some art work similar to these houses.  Kind of reminds me of Hundertwasser in a way... I thought about trying to transfer it into fabric and became obsessed with drafting out a pattern and a method to do it.  I made templates and played around with the solids I had on hand and was very disappointed.  I had a long conversation with my husband how I felt like I just can't do this artist thing.  I have always wanted to be able to draw and to be able to put what is in my mind into creation, but I feel I lack that ability to transfer what is inside my head into a real form.  But, whether it is productive or not, I am obsessed with this whole creating thing.  I think about fabric and quilting with every spare moment I have (not always a lot of spare moments).  I went to bed that night telling my husband that I would get it right and that I would go back to the drawing board and get these houses the way I had them pictured. 

I'm not sure I really believed myself, but when the new solids arrived I holed myself up in my sewing room that night and kept doing progress checks with my husband.  He was doubtful, but I felt that I was going in the right direction and kept plodding along.  And I feel like my persistence paid off.  I did what I had envisioned.  And the lesson was that I need to believe and persist.  I had the same process with the pincushion.  I've never made one before and after trying to find a tutorial for one and not finding anything that fit the bill for me, I went off to play again and came up with my two sided wagon wheel pincushion.  I love that my creative processes have been pushed by this swap.  I love that I tried something new.  I hope my partner likes the table runner and pincushion--I truly did my best effort. 

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Heather Ross Far Far Away Sand Castle Quilt

See who has been helping me finish up this quilt this morning?  Alexander kept busy while I was finishing putting on the borders of this quilt while Oliver was napping.  He's getting to be such a big boy these days.  He loves to help around the house and when I am sewing he is good company.  Oliver still is too little yet, but such a sweetie that keeps me occupied as well!  Oliver and I usually keep busy together in the mornings while Alexander goes with his dad to feed the cows or check the sheep, etc.  We have been going for daily walks now that the weather is getting warm.  I'm so impressed that he just turned one and can walk over a mile with me on our trail my husband built 2 years ago.  He just keeps going and going and never seems to tire himself out.  He kept his grandma busy walking with him for two hours straight all over the farm the other day so I am not sure what are his limits!

So, I bought a stack of fat quarters of Heather Ross's Far Far Away 1 just before it started to get scarce.  It was sort of a last minute decision for me.  I love the designs and the colors of this fabric, but I hate that it is double gauze.  It takes a lot of dedication to follow a designer into double gauze to be used as quilting fabric, let me tell you!  I hated working with it.  But, I think it was worth it in the end.  I was not too terribly original in the design I chose for this fabric. The pattern designer used Far Far Away 2 in her sample quilt.  It is a pattern by Chasing Cottons that you can find here.  I did change quite a few things though.  I added the solids to brighten it up and because by the time I finished the blocks I needed to add some stability around the double gauze.  Also there was no way I was going to use the tiny tiny scraps of FFA1 to make the scrappy border tiles so I used the solids instead.  This is a quilt I will need to quilt heavily to give it some stability but I think I will love it in the end.  It is intended to be a commission piece for a friend, but I'm waiting to see if the final effort of quilting is worthy or not...

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Mono Pez Will be Reprinted!!!

Do you remember when I posted about the mono pez reprint campaign here?  Well, I just heard from Mamaspark that we have had success!  There will be a reprint due out in January with 12 mono colors and 6 multi colors!  If you want to check it out for yourself the link is here
I'm so excited!  January seems like a long time to wait now...

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