Sunday, June 30, 2013

Sunday Stash Report, Week 26...Half way through the year!

It's time for a "mid-term" report, if nothing else to prove to myself I am actually finishing projects.

One thing I discovered I'm really bad at is taking pictures of my finished project. Sometimes, I've even forgot to count them out on my stash report.  But here are the pictures of the finished projects that I could find so far this year (plus my long term project)!

I know I'm forgetting some, but I'll try to do better!

Now for my stash report.  This was a really bad good week for adding to my stash:

About 15 metres from one garage sale.  Good thing all the flannels on the bottom are going to my niece (about 3 metres).  I had already put 2 more metres of another flannel in my stash before I remembered to take a picture.  I love the red hippo fabric - it's an IKEA print from 2008 and there is about 3 metres of it, perfect for a pieced backing on a kids quilt.
And I'm not even sure how to count all this:
3 clotheslines full of vintage sheets and pillowcases.  12 pillowcases at about a metre each, and at least the same number of sheets at about 4 metres each makes for 60 metres.  That's 75 metres in one week (but I only paid $23 for the whole works!)  I better start knocking out some finishes soon.  I think I'm going to do a giveaway or two with some of the sheets.
Added this week: 75 metres
Added Year-to-Date: 141.75 metres
Used since last report: 4 metres
Used Year-to-Date: 25.5 metres
Net used/Added for 2013: 116.25 metres
I did get one finish this week and it's been haunting me for a while.  I had been working on Just Takes Two (homage to red & white quilts), but once I saw the first quarter assembly, I wasn't sure if I could carry on with it.  It's not that I didn't like it or appreciate the work in it, it just seemed so much larger and complex than I envisioned.  I decided to carry on and make some of the blocks I liked the most, added a few of my own and made a table topper.  I played with the design and came up with something I like!
I ran out of daylight before I finished the applique so it seems a little light on the top, but it filled in nicely.  I probably should have made my T-block in the reverse but overall I'm very happy with it.  Once it is quilted, I'm going to bind it with a red binding. It will finish at 36" square, perfect for my antique square table!  I used 2 metres each of Bella White (98) and Kona Ruby!
I have washed all my new/old sheets and hung them to dry.  It was so hot here that the one load was dry by the time the next load was ready.  Tomorrow is supposed to be a real scorcher by West Coast standards, perfect for our annual Canada Day barbeque!
Have a happy Canada Day!
Terri in BC

Saturday, June 29, 2013

My newest obsession!

I've been trying to resist for a while now, but every once in a while I would slip and pick one up.  But today, I fell off the wagon big time!
Welcome to Vintage Love!
I lost count at 12 sheets and 10 pillowcases, plus I got 5 more shirts for my Moth in a Window blocks.  I only paid $10 for the whole lot!!!  I love garage sales!

The next one wasn't to be outdone, and I picked up close to 20 metres (about 20 yards) and two finished kids aprons for $15.
I had only gone with the idea of picking up sheets and shirts, because I've been trying to declutter, but found more bargains.

And a Nancy Drew book printed in 1961, in excellent condition for just $3.  I need to find my old ones, including a couple from the 1940's that belonged to my mom.

I also picked up a partial set of dishes.  I'm going to smash them up and tile the top of my old potting table, which has seen better days.

I'm going to sand it, paint the bottom white, and add new plywood to the top, then my daughter is going to help me create a mosaic top.  I may end up boxing in the bottom area and making a storage cupboard for the deck cushions. 

I also picked up some tea cups for a friend.  She wants to have a tea party for her daughter's 5th birthday, and I promised to keep a look-out for some pretty ones.

I may end up keeping this one!  The colours are perfect for my sewing room, and I can see a cute little pincushion in the top.  It is older than the others, but isn't marked.  I think it might be bone china from about the 30's but I could be way off.  I don't know much about china.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Sunday Stash Report, Week 25

Nothing in this week, and no finishes to report, although I have been plugging away at several projects.

Added this week: 0 metres

Added Year-to-Date: 66.75 metres
Used since last report: 0 metres
Used Year-to-Date: 21.5 metres
Net used/Added for 2013: 45.25 metres
Today my thoughts and prayers go to all those affected by the severe flooding in South-West Alberta.  The fourth largest city in Canada, Calgary has had its main core inundated with water and power has been shut off. and numerous towns have had unbelievable damage.  The town of High River has been almost completely destroyed.  My brother lives in Calgary and took these photos of Fish Creek near his home.  Luckily, he lives on a bluff 100 feet above the creek and is unaffected, other than by road closures.

These pictures are of Fish Creek and MacKenzie Meadows Golf Course.
Ghost Lake Dam - my brother has gone there today to rescue his sailboat.  Apparently, there are log jams starting to build up in Ghost Creek and as my brother says, when the old-timers are starting to pull their boats out of the water, you know it's time to get yours out too.
These pictures from various websites:
Inside the Saddledome, home of the Calgary Flames hockey team (photo courtesy of the team's website
Here's a visual of how high the water is:
(courtesy of Virgin Radio Canada)
This is the Calgary Zoo.  The animals have been evacuated and there are rumours that the big cats are being held at the local jail!
The worst hit community is High River.
(photo courtesy of
The entire town is underwater and homes have been wiped off their foundations. My boss has family living there and they were evacuated with no warning, and only have the clothes on their back.  For awhile, they had even lost their mother!  She was in the local hospital and was evacuated to a safer place, but because it had to be done so fast, the lists of patients wasn't updated right away.
Unlike a hurricane or a flood by a large river like the Mississippi, this was flash flooding caused by heavy rains over the Rocky Mountains, melting the winter snowpack.
The military has been called out.  This amazing shot came from Virgin Radio Calgary:
Go, Army!
Because of the inundation of water creating problems for storing and distributing goods, I am donating my goods to the local Salvation Army, where they are assembling trucks to send to Calgary and area.  I am also donating cash to the Canadian Red Cross, specifically for the Alberta floods.
If you can spare a little, I'm sure it will be appreciated.  100% of all designated donations are going to the flood relief.  You can donate here
The Red Cross (and Red Crescent) is my preferred charity of choice.  They saved my daughters' lives through their blood donor program (both of my daughters required several blood transfusions at birth due to Rh incompatibility) and are generally the first organization to respond to disasters around the world.  I always donate through them when they ask for funds for specific disasters. 
And one last thing for a little humour relief - Calgary has got an awesome mayor!  Check out his latest comments:
(courtesy of Virgin Radio Calgary)
Stay safe, everyone!
Terri in BC

Monday, June 17, 2013

Vignette Mystery Quilt

After I posted yesterday's stash report, I realized I've never really talked about my long-term project, Vignette in Stitches.  I had been following Leanne Beasley's blog for a little while when she announced she was putting out a new magazine and it was going to kick off with a Mystery Quilt.

It took me a while to find a North American dealer but I finally found it to order at In Between Stitches in California.  They have been wonderful to deal with, and now that a new mystery has started I am keeping my subscription.
When my first issue arrived, I was challenged to find similar fabrics to the ones used in the quilt (by an Australian designer, Rosalie Quinlan).  I could have ordered a fat quarter bundle with some of the fabrics in it, but I have so much stash, I decided to wing it!

I had fun pulling colours and patterns from my stash that resembled the ones in the magazine.  I was really happy with my final selections, and I only had to buy the red polka-dots and the replacement for a large embroidered border that was supposed to look like this:
(This picture is from a blog of like-minded stitchers, Vignette in Stitches, and you might want to check out their finished quilts).
I knew if I had any hope of finishing this quilt in my lifetime, I had to eliminate 144" of a 4" wide stitched border.  Instead, I bought a cute Minny Muu mini-flowers in the same colours as the embroidery.
I quickly got started on the assembly and embroidery of the first block.  I learned a couple of great tips, such as using a lightweight fusible batting behind the embroidery to add depth and hid any stray threads, and baste on large strips of scrap fabric to keep the edges from fraying.
Each of these little Churn Dash blocks measures 4" finished, with 1 1/2" HSTs. 

I finished Block One by the time the second issue arrived with two more blocks in it.  I pieced it together fairly quickly, and then got sidetracked for over a year.
Finally in January, I picked it up again and got the embroidery done on blocks 2, 3 and 4 assembled the first row.

Blocks 5 and 9 were next and I not only got those pieced, but all the cutting for the remaining blocks. I even had the design traced for the embroidery.  Then I got stalled again.
At some point in the last six months, I assembled the centre section which included blocks 6,7, 10 and 11.  I don't even remember when.
But this past week, I started working on the appliqued flowers for the centre!
I'm new to hand-sewn applique in just the past year. It's taken me a while but I think I finally figured out how to get nice smooth curves.  It involves Mylar, a hot iron and starch and even a bit of glue. I am having so much fun!
And here are the parts so far.  There will be another narrow red polka dot border and a row of 1 1/2" squares surrounding the centre, and a large appliqued frame on top of the centre as well.  The second side piece just needs the red polka-dot borders pieces added and it will be ready for embroidery. Since the starting block is dated, I'd like to finish this by the end of the year so I can enter the finishing date as 2013!
This is one of my summer projects - wish me luck!

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Sunday Stash Report, Week 24

After rocking two finishes in as many days, things slowed down the last two weeks.  With working so much overtime, there hasn't been a lot of free time but I have been trying to be in my "Happy Place" aka my sewing room for a bit every day - I've been managing about 45 minutes to an hour each time.  (It helps that the sleep specialist has put me on a rigid schedule - I'm not allowed to go to bed before midnite and have to be up at 7 am, weekends included.)
I did get a great piece of fabric at a garage sale.  I've been looking for a new cushion set for my patio swing, but without any luck.  I had decided to make a scrappy quilt that I could throw on it that wouldn't bother me if it got left out by mistake.  When I spotted this, I was thrilled!

There are four cheater panels of Double Wedding Rings on this piece.  I'm going to back each panel with a vintage sheet and quilt each one separately with a simple "stitch-in-the-fake-ditch" stitch, then assemble the four panels with a sashing.  It will be so much easier to handle that way on my machine.
Added this week: 3.25 metres
Added Year-to-Date: 66.75 metres
Used since last report: 0 metres
Used Year-to-Date: 21.5 metres
Net used/Added for 2013: 45.25 metres
I've enjoyed going in my room every day, even if it is not until 10 at night.

I'm still plugging away on Easy Street by Bonnie Hunter.  This pattern has now been retired and will be published in her next book.
Most of the parts are complete, and I'm finishing the rest as I assemble the blocks.  I want to have this finished by the end of June, so I can get it off to the long-arm quilter.  This is going to be one big quilt - it measures about 110"x110" before I even think about borders.
I've sorted through my UFOs for some hand-work projects for summer so I can have something to work on when I'm over at my daughter's or at my friends house hanging in the backyard.
I prepped the second border for embroidery and started the applique in the center of my Vignette Mystery quilt by Leanne Beasley.
I finally started Birdie Stitches - I've only had the fabric for two plus years!
I've assembled little kits for my hexie flowers - every one is different, so I have to make sure I have them properly organized. 
I also have a cross-stitch project in my bag, Christmas stockings for my grandbabies!
So now I am ready to go when I'm invited somewhere - no more excuses!
(One of these days I'm going to make a bag the same size and stiffness as this Safeway shopping bag - it holds everything perfectly)
I also made some progress on a new design, a TV tray cover with an ironing pad, cutting board holder and multiple pockets that will hold all my tools at my fingertips.
I'm using scraps of Vintage Modern by Bonnie and Camille, along with some yardage in the aqua colourway.  I've been working on this a little while now, and when I get frustrated I put it aside.  It's now back in the corner!
(So, do I look for another smaller cutting mat or cut this one down... or pick out all the stitches and add a border to the already-quilted piece?)
Now I'm off to tackle another UFO!  Thanks for visiting and have a great day,
Terri in BC

Saturday, June 15, 2013

15 minutes....

Well, so much for shorter, more frequent posts!  I've been working a lot of overtime and any free time I've had I used for sewing, not on the computer (way too much of that at work).  I've also had a sweet 2-year-old's birthday to celebrate, a series of appointments with a sleep specialist, and just general busyness.  But I am resolving as of today, to take 15 minutes at least every other day to post here.  Why?  Because it keeps me accountable, it's a journal of what I've managed to accomplish and how I've spent my days and I just like doing it!
Zoey loved her I-spy quilt!  Of course, my bug-lovin' granddaughter picks out the spider!

And the water table I got her was a hit!
The simplest toys can get the biggest smiles!  From Auntie Jackie and cousins.

And can you see future trouble with the new swing set?

My other gift to her was a summer outfit made from a pattern that I used for my girls when they were little.  I made it reversible with 2 pairs of matching panties, but forgot to take a picture before I gave it to her.  I tried that day, but it was so bright and sunny, the picture was really blown out - here's the best I could get after adjusting it.
Now I'm heading out to enjoy the sunshine after 5 days of rain! 
Have a great weekend,
Terri in BC

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Sunday Stash Report, Week 20

Okay, so it's Week 22 apparently!  I lost 2 weeks somewhere along the line - no wonder I only had one post in May!

Another busy two weeks have passed, but at least this time I can report some finishes! 

I had basted this quilt together at the time of my last stash report with the intention of gifting it to my co-worker for her sister who had just moved to hospice. Unfortunately, she passed the same day I made my report, after just 3 days in hospice.  I went ahead and quilted it, and presented it to my coworker in memory of her sister.  She has decided to give it to her mother with my blessings! She has been giving me a hard time ;o) ever since about making her cry (I love her that we both can laugh and cry at the same time).  Counted in my stash report is the binding at 1/2 metre.  

I added one of my special labels made with a Heather Ross goldfish.  My mom used to mark her ceramics with a fish (check out our last name!) and when I found these goldfish, I decided to use them to mark my special quilts.
I finished my experiment with old poly/cottons and lace from my mother's stash that I inherited (see more here)It turned out exactly how I envisioned! I've shown it to a couple of friends and my daughter and they all love it - in fact, my daughter wants it if she has another girl. 
Pardon the wrinkles!  Since it also has eyelet fabrics, I plan on putting a layer of muslin underneath the top, then use white flannel for the batting.  I plan on using minkee for the backing and it will be too heavy if I use a regular batting.  This one measures about 36 x 36 in., perfect for a stroller or car seat, or swaddling.  I have enough fabrics and lace left to make at least 4-5 more, but I might make myself a summer lap quilt instead!  I hope to get it quilted this week.  Used from my stash, only 1.5 metres - yikes, I can probably get about a dozen from what is left.
Yesterday, I realized there are just 10 days until Zoey's second birthday, so I quickly put together her I-Spy quilt.  I had to raid the stash for the last 10 fabrics and now my Happy Room looks like a bomb went off. It's pieced in rows and as soon as Bonnie Hunter's Quilt Cam starts in about 45 minutes, I plan on sewing the rows together and hopefully get it quilted today!
I even fussy-cut a frog princess from the leftovers of her big-girl quilt - the scraps that keep on giving!  This was an easy 2 metres of fabric out of the stash, good thing I have to make another one by July for another birthday.
Of course, since I cleared some out of the stash AND it is Super-Stitcher weekend at my favourite local quilt shop, Hamels (20% off all regular priced fabrics, first weekend of every month!), I decided to stop by and add to my stash of Bella solids.  I was lucky enough to find a couple of bolts of Glamping by Mary Jane, so I grabbed some of that as well (along with a Fat 1/8 of Salt Air).  Added: 6 metres - so much for stash-busting with those finishes.

Instead of buying a colour card, I've decided to spend the money on the colours I want, and made up my own colour ring so I know what I already have.  Good thing, because I've already bought the 3 of the same colour twice each  (I apparently love Feather, Blue Raspberry and Aqua)!
I cut an approximately 1" x 2 1/2" piece (preferably from scraps) with pinking shears, use fusible lightweight interfacing to add body, and mark it with a pigma pen with the brand-name, colour and stock number.  Then if I remember to bring it with me, I don't double up any more.  My stash is small, but I only buy what I need for current projects (so far).  These ones are mostly intended for the Super Mario quilt that I want to make for my grand-nephew.
Added this week: 6 metres

Added Year-to-Date: 63.5 metres

Used since last report: 4 metres

Used Year-to-Date: 21.5 metres

Net used/Added for 2013: 43 metres

 Linking up to Judy of Patchwork Times Sunday Stash Report.  I've made a promise to myself to spend 15 minutes a day in the sewing room this month, so hopefully I will also post more frequent, shorter posts!
Thanks for visiting,
Terri in BC