Saturday, February 28, 2015

February BOM and Wool Doings

As February draws to a close, it's time for the BOM update and this year, for me that also means talking about working with Wool!

For my wool ornaments project:  the next stocking (#2) is now done:


The stitched details on these are supposed to be done by hand but I've been trying to see just how much I can get done by machine since I already had one hand work embroidery project going (well,  finished now).  For this stocking, I was able to get everything stitched by machine (using Perle cotton) except the little leaves and berries detail under the cuff which was done by hand.  My Janome can do a makeshift French Knot which allowed me to do the snowflake motif in the center of the mittens.  It doesn't have the raised texture of a hand done knot but in a pinch (or a hurry) it can certainly be an acceptable substitute.

For my Heart & Home project:  block #9 was mostly finished:


Unfortunately, what was supposed to happen was those log cabin blocks were to have one more round added to them and then be split in half along the diagonal and added as corners to the on-point applique center unit.  Based on a picture that came with the block kit, the dark strip on the lower right looks like what was supposed to go in that round.  Problem is, there is not enough of that fabric to add rounds to both blocks.  In the picture of the designer's original quilt, the log cabin blocks are not bordered with dark strips (and I do have enough extra fabric to do it that way), but I admit I kind of like the dark border finish.

I've got to make a trip into Manhattan next week which gives me an opportunity to go to the City Quilter store.  They carry some Daiwabo fabrics there so I'm hoping to find something I can use to finish the blocks.  If not, I will finish the blocks with lighter fabrics and either way, the block will be  completed along with next month's BOM work.

Looking back through my posts on this project, I realize I never posted about the second row (blocks 4 - 6) and block 7 when they were made back in July and August of 2012.


For the second row, the three blocks were made separately, then when the majority of the center and left blocks were finished, they were seamed together and the overlapping tree branches and leaves  were appliqued across both bocks.  


For block 7 I also used the French knot function on the machine to stitch the detail in the center of the flower buds.  It's a little hard to see but I liked the fact that since I've been stitching these all by machine (using Aurifil Lana wool thread), I was able to do that detail by machine as well.  The plan as of right now is to finish the last three blocks of this BOM and the quilt in March.  Stay tuned to see if that happens!

Continuing on the topic of wool, I also finished the "Warm Heart" table topper this month:


This was supposed to be the companion to my "Vintage Cherries" quilt for display for Valentine's Day.  I'm still working on getting the quilting of the quilt also done before the month ends today.  At least both will be ready for the holiday next year!

I had to change the design of this a little because I only had one piece of pink wool in my stash when I went to make this.  Most of the wool stash I have (separate from the Heart & Home BOM) was received when I subscribed to a monthly "Wool Gatherers" stash builder program from Primitive Gatherings during 2011 -2012.  When I went to cut the center heart for this one, I was a little short of length:


So I cut the tip as a separate piece and layered it onto the bottom of the heart and placed the branch and leaf details to cover the join. 

 


Because all the details sat a little lower on the piece because of that, I added additional heart flowers at the top to balance out the original design.  This was also all machine stitched using Perle cotton thread.    And yes, even this little project has a place on the back to write in the label. 


A labelling post is on my list of topics to cover on the blog one of these days!  Well right now, I really need to get back to the quilting.  I'll also be back tomorrow with posts for the "Get It Done" update and "Slow Sunday Stitching".  See you then!

Monday, February 23, 2015

Slow Sunday Stitching 2/22/15

I spent the weekend at a friend's house in New Jersey.  Her husband threw her a surprise birthday party and we had a great time celebrating with family, neighbors and friends.   Even better, since I stayed over, we were able to sit and chat for most of Sunday before I had to make the return trip home and during that time I got to finish this:


The stitching for my little Redwork piece depicting Presidents Lincoln and Obama is now done!  The next phase for this project is to add it to this old quilt of mine that is currently on display:


I made this all the way back in 2002 in my first year of quilting.  It was the third quilt I had made and an attempt to make a quilt using the "paper bag method" of scrappy color choice following the "Spontaneity" exercise in Gai Perry's book "Color From the Heart".  I want to place the Redwork in the center of the quilt and maybe embellish around it with trims or something.  We'll see what develops over the course of the week. 
 
For Slow Sunday Stitching, a finish means I can now turn (back) to working on a Quilt-As-You-Go project started many years ago:


I'm linking up with Kathy over at Kathy's Quilts and going to take some time to check out what everyone else was up to yesterday.  Hope to see your project there!

http://www.kathysquilts.blogspot.ca/2015/02/life-is-beautiful.html

Friday, February 20, 2015

Vintage Cherries Update #2

On the design wall:  Now that the back is done, can a finish be far behind?


Hopefully not since I've still got a lot of things to get done before February ends. Looks like it'll be a race to the finish!

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Vintage Cherries Update

Well, at least the top got done! 
 

 Happy Valentine's Day!

Monday, February 9, 2015

A Week of Slow Stitching

Mr. Lincoln is done!


I didn't actually stitch on Sunday this week so didn't link up with Kathy this time (however, if you'd like to see what everyone else did, you can check out the link up here).  I had expected that because of things we had to do on Sunday, I might not get to the stitching that day.  Fortunately, I was able to spend a few days during the last week stitching on days when snowstorms gave me the excuse to stay in.

As a result, the stitching for Mr. Lincoln finished.  So now this little redwork project is 3/4s done.  I have one last motif which will hopefully be either partially or fully revealed on next Sunday's report.  Admittedly this has been fun and I definitely see more embroidery projects in my future!

Also slowly moving along is my "Vintage Cherries For Valentines" quilt. 


I added twelve more blocks but still have fourteen left to make before putting the top together.  At this point, I'm running out of room on the design wall and have started taping blocks above it!  With the embroidery up to date, this project will now have to be the focus for the week if it's to be done by Valentines Day.  As usual, fingers crossed to get that done!

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Posting Through the Superbowl #3: Slow Sunday Stitching 2/1/15

Had to stop stitching so I could make this post before midnight.....

Superbowl Final:  New England Patriots 28, Seattle Seahawks 24

I guess the Jimmy Kimmel video was right:  Tom Brady is a God!


...and speaking of patriots....

I may keep stitching for awhile and get a little more done before calling it a night.  Snow is falling again so tomorrow might be another snow day which would be good for more stitching!  Fingers crossed!!  Pop on over to Kathy's to share what you worked on or see what everyone else was stitching on through the game!

http://www.kathysquilts.blogspot.ca/2015/02/slow-sunday-stitching.html

Posting Through the Superbowl #2: Getting It Done 2015 - January Recap/February List

So continuing with my Superbowl Day posting and my personal finish challenge for the year, it's time to report in on last month's progress and set the agenda for the coming month.

From the January List:

1.  Get "High Strung Plus 2" to the flimsie stage:  DONE!



2.  Quilt the two Kaye England Civil War lap quilts:  NOT DONE



3.  Quilt the Civil War Minis: NOT DONE

 

4.  Get the first "block" done for a new (personal) BOM:  making up the Warm Hands/Warm Feet ornaments: DONE!



5.  I also want to work on the blocks for another BOM:  continuing the Heart & Home Wool BOM from a few years  ago:  DONE!



6.  This year I also have a number of hand work projects lined up as well a hand quilting UFO that could use a finish.  Hoping to encourage myself to make time for that, I want to try participating in Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching linkys:  DONE!

 
 
 
7.  I'm also overdue for making up a baby quilt gift so that needs to get done too.  Have stash, need a plan!  NOT DONE
 
 
So here's what I hope to work on for February:
 
1.  UFOs:  Once again, I will try to get to the Quilting on the Civil War lap and mini quilts, this time hopefully with finishes.
2.  Wool/BOMs:  I'll continue to work on the next blocks for the two wool BOMS, finish the Valentine's Table Topper and start on a new one:  another topper that will be a kitchen wall hanging

3.  Hand Work:  I'll continue or finish the "Slow Sunday Stitching" Redwork.  If I finish it, I will restart an old Quilt-As-You-Go project.
 
 
4.  Holiday Quilts:  I'll finish the blocks, top and quilting on "Vintage Cherries".
 
 
5.  Gift Quilts: I need, need, need to start work on the baby quilt (its now long overdue!!!)
 
 I'm off to do some Slow Sunday Stitching and Downton Abbey!
 
P.S. Superbowl Update:  3rd Quarter, Seattle Seahawks ahead of the Patriots 24 -14 

Posting Through the Superbowl #1: Woolen Doings

I don't usually watch the Superbowl unless my team (the NY Giants) are playing and they didn't even come close this year!  Compounding things, my DH and I usually do our monthly warehouse club shopping at the end or beginning of the month.  We had a performance to go to yesterday so today was the day to get it done.  We expected a glut of people at the stores but I guess most people had prepared for their parties early because the stores were relatively empty.  So now that the shopping is done and all the groceries have been put away, I can relax, blog and quilt!  Oh, and watch Downton Abbey!!

There will be three posts today: some on my doings during the past week, my "Get It Done" challenge recap and (hopefully) a report on the Slow Sunday Stitching I hope to work on once the first two posts are done.

Having finally gotten a new Christmas quilt to the flimsie stage (see "High Strung +2" posted here), I had also put on the project list for this year a couple of wool ornament kits that I want to do as a personal block-of-the-month project:


Since this was the last week of the month I needed to get started! So here's block 1:


I'm machine stitching these with Perle Cotton #12 having learned from Rosie McCready DeLeon's website that #12 Perle is similar to working with two strands of embroidery floss.  For me the advantage of using Perle is getting to do that by machine.  This is helpful since I've already got another hand work embroidery project going for Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching (and that will be a separate post today). 

Also on the wool and Block of the Month list is getting back to my Heart & Home BOM.  I had started the blocks back in March 2012 to participate in Sinta Borland's "BOM Rehab" challenge (her blog is Pink Pincushion).  The kits had been purchased that year from Primitive Gatherings so have been percolating since then which is why I want to get it back underway and hopefully finished this year.  I pulled out the stash of kits and the next block (#8 of 12) is this one.


The wool appliques are stitched onto backgrounds of Japanese Taupe fabrics using wool thread.  I had been able to stash a bunch of Aurifil Lana wool back when I started this.  When I pulled out the kits, I found that I actually also needed to finish the detail stitching on the last block so was pleased to also get that done.
 
With the first two projects needing so much stitching done, I was only able to get the last of the wool projects started.  When I finished my "High Strung +2" quilt top, I got started on a new project: "Vintage Cherries For Valentines" based on design from the same book.  Here's the original design from the book:


and mine so far...

When I saw the quilt in the book the color palette reminded me of chocolate candy and Valentine's Day.  That in turn reminded me that last year had I bought a wool table topper pattern on Ebay. I loved the opportunity to do another wool project and welcomed the opportunity to work it in with the other projects I've got going. 


As you can see, I only got as far as tracing out the templates onto freezer paper and starting to pull some stash for it.  I have high hopes to get both the "Cherries" quilt and this little table topper completed by Valentines Day or shortly after.  I have (yet) another wool project I've long wanted to get up on the dock and hopefully once this last one is finished, I will be able to start on that one.  Nothing like working with wool in the winter!

P.S.  As I publish this, it looks like it's the second quarter and the score is tied for the game. Ok, I may not be watching but I am interested in what's going on!