Thursday, February 13, 2020

A Seven Day Quilt Top in Just Seven Weeks

Just after Christmas, I saw a Mystery QAL on Kim Lapacek's Blog Persimmon Dreams. A one week quilt along, how hard could it be.

Today, I finished my top. Surprise, it's giant spools of thread.

It is much bigger than I expected. The top is 32" x 52". The blocks just kind of grew.

The first block was the 8" square in the middle of this block. I thought that it was going to be a pretty easy quilt. Eventually we added the top and bottom of the spool and some background fabric to make all the blocks the same height.

Block two, is an elongated churn dash.

Block 3, flying geese.

Block 4 is a square in a square, and I had to add some cats.

Block 5 is an elongated version of a block I have done before but I don't remember what it's called.

It was lots of fun to make the whole top from my scraps. Now that I have it all together, I need to find a backing and quilt it.  I wonder what I have in my "What was I thinking?" collection.

Thursday, February 6, 2020

February Begins

The groundhog did or did not see his/her shadow, which means we only have about two more months of winter left. Winter usual ends about the end of March or the beginning of April, with the occasional blast toward the end of April.

So, I was delighted to see this in my dining room.

Looks positively tropical. I think I should have been drinking something with an umbrella in it.

The azalea is showing us that winter means nothing to it.

The amaryllis bulbs have started to sprout. They spent last summer on the patio, and have just decided to wake up after a nap in the sun room for a few months.

Meanwhile, a new scarf will make my winter look better.

This is the Pembroke Scarf, and it is knit in hand dyed yarn I bought at a yarn festival, last fall. Lots of great spring colours, there. I just need to weave the ends in.

Thursday, January 30, 2020

Tidying Up

I've been doing some tidying this week, and realized that I hadn't yet posted this finish.

I finished this shawl in October, didn't get it blocked until December, and I am finally posting it, today.

This is Rødsildre by Melinda Measor. I knit it in yarn I bought at a yarn festival. You know, the skein that is really pretty but you have no idea what to do with it. You can check the details on my Ravelry page here.

Last week, my grandson brought me a piece of Duplo, and said "It's Nana." I fear he is right.

Glasses, grey hair, jeans. Yeap, that's his Nana. So I am changing my avatar everywhere to this. Because it is cute.

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Playing Internationally

The weather has not been delightful. We have had cold, and snow and all those things that January is famous for here.

However, I stepped into the dining room yesterday, and saw this.

The azalea that I was sure had died, due to neglect, has surprised me with some pink blooms. Such a change from the cold and white.

Back in November, I saw a swap posted. I haven't participated in many swaps. The results are often highly variable.  However, I decided to join the Holiday Hangover Pouch Swap. Make a zippered pouch, add some goodies, meet a new friend, somewhere else.

I was matched with Stacey of Two Terriers Studio. I was a bit intimidated at first. Stacy has made samples for Mister Domestic! He designs his own fabric lines. However, I could tell from our early email chats that we had some things in common. Little did we expect how much we had in common.

I send Stacey this pouch.

Because it was an international swap, I lined it with this.

Stacey sent me this.

I sent Laurel Burch scarps, she sent Tula Pink scraps. Brights all the way.

I sent her a lip balm key ring.

She sent me a key ring.

I sent a second zippered pouch, with cats on it.

She sent a second zippered pouch with cats on it.

I sent a zipper pull.

She sent buttons.

I sent sewing notions.

She sent a sewing notion.

I sent chocolate for self care. (chocolate made by Syrian refugees in Antigonish, Nova Scotia)

She sent skin products for self care.

Isn't that nail polish an awesome colour?

Google maps says we live 7 hours away, across an international border, from each other, but I can tell that Stacy is my new sew sister!

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

January Fun

I've been doing some sewing, making a zippered pouch for a swap I participated in. I will show you my pouch and the one I received after my swap mate receives her parcel. However, I thought you might like to see my mailbox adventure, when I went to pick up my parcel from the swap.

We had 3 days or rain, freezing rain, snow, and frigid temperatures. This resulted in the door on my community mailbox freezing shut. When this happens, you can inform Canada Post, and they will send someone (eventually) or you can do a bit of DIY.

A zipper bag full of hot water, held to the door, will eventually thaw the ice, and allow the door to open. The ledges at the bottom of the doors on all the boxes had a buildup of ice. I will admit that after I got my door open, my neighbours were on their own. I also took a towel, and dried off the ledge and the door, so it wouldn't freeze again, after I closed it.

My friend Maggie reminded me that I haven't yet posted pictures of the fall retreat, so here are a few, from October.

We had the biggest laugh of the weekend over this.

It was suppose to be a flying geese block, but the quilter didn't even notice that she had sewn the second piece on the wrong corner. We decided this "new" block she created was called Downward Goose. things get pretty silly by the end of a long day sewing.

In other news, after 9 months in our care, our foster cat, Mystique, has found her forever family, and gone to live with them. We are so happy for her, though we keep looking for her in the house.

Tuesday, January 7, 2020

2019 Completions and Some 2020 Goals

Christmas and New Year have come and gone. Between family, and Cat Sitting for a friend, the time has flown. I did a tally of my completions but didn't manage to get it posted, so here it is.

In 2018, I only posted to the blog 35 times. I obviously need to work harder at that. I think I need to work on "building my brand" as well as trying to complete more projects.

Sewing Projects Completed

2 Purses
2 Totes
2 Bibs
2 Pillowcases
5 small zipped Pouches ( for the church Christmas Project)
3 pairs of Shorts
13 Lip Balm Holders
1 Receiving Blanket
1 Sewing Wallet
1 Apron
4 Dog Bandanas
9 Other Pouches or Cases

Knitting Projects Completed

3 Hats
3 pairs of Socks
1 Baby Blanket
1 Baby Sweater
2 Scarves
2 Shawls
1 pair of Gloves

I have some projects that were started but not completed. I will be trying to finish those in the next while.

We only fostered 3 cats this year. Mystique became a longer stay client than we expected. I hope to have some news about her soon.

I signed up for the Bag of the Month Club, again, so look for more purses and bags. I have an art quilt I am going to be working on. Hopefully, my concept will translate into reality. I will continue to knit everyday. It is good for my soul.

Friday, December 20, 2019

Preparing for Christmas

I have been busy getting some things ready for Christmas, this week. Parcels need to be packed and mailed to far away family. Goodies need to be baked. sewing and knitting needs to be finished.

I made an apron to go into one parcel. In celebration of a move to the north, I thought this was the suitable gift.

I lined it, because, as the older ladies from my youth would say, it keeps the gravy from soaking through. Of course, the instructions that come with the panel say to turn all the edges under with a narrow hem. I tried that once and it takes forever, so now, I just line them. Much quicker and easier.

I took pictures of the process, so if anyone is interested, I'll post pictures of how to make a lined apron.

This is the lining.

The fabric is called Canadian Capers. I bought some extra for other silly projects.

The tree is up, and my grandson helped me decorate.

He got a stool, so he could put the stuffies up high, then never moved the stool, so they are all on the same side.  Who am I to argue with his creative vision?

Meanwhile, Mystique has set up residence under the tree.

She reaches up and knocks the stuffies off the tree, so my grandson gets to redecorate every time he is over.

I have a whole box of beautiful, fragile ornaments, packed away. Maybe, someday, when there are no cats, dogs or preschoolers, I might put them on the tree, again. Then, again, I kind of like the current collection.