Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Postcrossing Update

A while back I posted about my new hobby - Postcrossing.  I joined this group and send and receive postcards all over the world to random people.  I truly enjoy the sending as much as the receiving.  It's been just over a year since I joined and last week I passed 200 cards.  That means that I have had brief contact with 400 strangers (200 that I sent cards to and 200 that sent me cards) all over the world.  The cards have been as varied as the people.  There has only been one repeat. It's nice to think that 200 people had smiles on their faces when they opened their mailbox and saw a postcard sent by me.  And 200 others made me smile when I opened my mailbox.

Here are three of my favorites:


 

Monday, November 17, 2014

Christmas Quilt

I managed to finish another quilt in-between my other projects.

The center part was made from a pattern by Fabric Café.  I changed the borders a bit and didn't use their signature chenille by the inch.  The back is fleece.  This woman wanted a warm quilt, but I find it difficult to quilt thick batting on my home machine so I thought the fleece backing would add extra warmth.

It's been unseasonably cold here...good weather to snuggle under a quilt and read a book! 

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Puppies and Babies - Is There Any Cuter Combination?

We have been visiting our puppies twice a week at the kennel.  We've become attached to SO many of the dogs there. There's Hudson who likes to play catch with a tennis ball; Titan (one of our puppy daddies) who, though he is excited to see us, is always the gentleman; Clyde who can climb a chain link fence (really!); Lacey our baby mommy who just wants love; Meg, our other baby mommy who just loves to lick; Scarlett, another mommy who needs some serious R&R after having an active litter of 7 and on and on. We usually visit with our pockets full of Milkbones for all!

Yesterday we brought Winter, our granddaughter and her Mom with us for our puppy visit.  We figured it was time the "kids" met each other.  She looks a bit curious in this picture.  What you can't see is her other hand touching the puppy's face and the puppy tasting her fingers! I think they'll make a great pair.

This guy is Aiden.  He will come live with us November 21!  On November 22 you can probably call me Sleepless.

Two  weeks later our girl (who will maybe be named Fiona...still keeping the options open) comes home to join the fun.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Fair Trade Sewing

I haven't linked with Lily's Quilts Small Blog Meet in a long time, but this month I'm going to join in the fun.  So, if you've wandered here from Lily's place, "Welcome." and "Nice to meet you!"

I mentioned in a previous post about Son #1's new adventures in retail.  He has been working on the structure of his new booth at a local farmer's market.  He hopes to set it up on a fair trade model and have a variety of sewists contribute items for sale.

So far I've made him a sign:
 Some pot holders:
Some pillows:
Some placemats:

And a few zippered and drawstring bags:

This was the "new stock".  He sold out of some items in the first batch and had a few requests so that determined the items in this batch.  I'm anxious to see what sells the next time around.

It's been fun to have something to work on together.  It can be difficult to find things to enjoy together with grown male offspring so this has been a great activity in so many ways. And it's nice to have reasons to use other features on my machine like decorative stitches and the embroidery module.  My quilt output has suffered a bit but it has been a lot of fun to work on this stuff.
 

Friday, October 31, 2014

Bias Stripes: Finally Another Quilt Finish!

It's been a long time since I've had a quilt finish to report.  Most of my sewing time has been directed at small items for son #1's new farmer's market booth (more about that in another post).  I have finished several tops but thought I'd wait until I had them quilted to write about them, never thinking that it would take this long!

My local guild started a PhD program this year.  It's like the old UFO (Un Finished Objects) with a new title - Projects Half Done.  I decided to join.  For the "cost" of two fat quarters you list 6 projects that you want to finish this year (September to August).  Every other meeting a number is drawn and you have two months to finish that numbered project.  The fine for not finishing is another fat quarter.  At the end of the year the amassed fat quarters are awarded by drawing to one of the participants in the program.  My list consists of three tops that need to be quilted and three quilts never yet started!  They are the remaining three projects of a Craftsy class by Elizabeth Hartman that I started in 2012.  Of course, the first number chosen was one of the quilts not yet started.  But, it was a design that I had looked at and decided would work with my scraps and make a good donation quilt.

So here we have Bias Stripes, an Elizabeth Hartman modern quilt design:

The stripes are foundation pieced on large format copy paper.

My critique:
  • This is not the first time that I've struggled with straight quilting on the sashing. I used a walking foot but still the fabric wants to migrate downward.  I don't think I will try this again unless I decide to change something significant in my machine set up.
  • The whole piece is a bit off kilter in shape.  Again, I'm not sure why.
  • I like the loopy free motion design in the striped boxes. 
  • I like the fleece backing (sorry, no picture).  The backing is actually a re-purposed snuggly from a year when many were exchanged as Christmas gifts but none were every used.  They really have a lot of yardage in them.
  • I used a blue thread for the quilting.  I hardly ever use contrasting thread but I thought it would help the white sashing.  And I think it did.  It makes the quilting more visible - for better or worse!
So, overall I'm partially pleased with this one. Hopefully, it will serve to keep it's owner warm through the winter this year.  It will go to the donations for the service bee I'm a member of.  We are donating quilts to a local organization that provides services to the elderly.  We meet once a month and sew and chat and share lunch.  It's a great format to get to know each other better.

Next during service bee I'm going to get working on the green scrap bin!
 

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Puppy Pictures

We visited the pups yesterday and got some nice pictures to share:


 
Honestly....I AM sewing.  This is just so much more interesting right now!!
 

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

The Scent of a Dog

This is Titan:
This is Lacy:
They got together and made two little boys puppies born October 8.  And right before Thanksgiving one of the boys will be coming to live with us.  We visit them about twice a week to give out lots of love.  Lacy is such a good mother and Titan is a total gentleman.  They live at Gap View Kennel where they are well cared for.

We are counting the days!