Friday, November 28, 2008

An afternoon at PatchworkPottery

We got back from Seattle late Wednesday afternoon. We were expecting that there would be long line ups at the border crossing as it was the day before Thanksgiving - the busiest travel day of the year in the U.S. - so we were told. The traffic was very light and there was no line up of any concern. I didn't buy much in Seattle - a few Laurel Burch Christmas fat quarters. I did get to go Bed,Bath and Beyond. The first time I had been there. I bought a few things there -- a very nice turkey baster for $5.00. I stocked up on Aleve and mostly just wandered around Pike's Market - enjoying the good coffee and the sunny weather.

Yesterday I got to go to spend the afternoon with Laurraine at PatchworkPottery yesterday. I went with one of my "Quilting Peeps" -Krista. Laurraine made Krista and I a lovely lunch and wonderful Cinnamon buns for a treat. The buns were so tasty - Krista and I shared a 2nd one!

I met Laurraine at Quilting by the Bay in September and she sells the most fabulous handmade and unique items on an Etsy store. She brought a bunch of items to sell at our retreat but I was too busy sewing ( or talking) to notice. When I finally discovered all the items on her site I just had to have this little coffee cup bag. Don't you just love the bag!

Laurraine made the cutest little cupcake pincushions and tape measure houses. She has a few published patterns as well. She has a new pattern for the sweetest little monkey baby quilt. There is a list of her published patterns on her blog - PatchworkPottery She also does pottery - although her kiln is not in operation at present. And --- she doesn't live that far from me!! So I will have to keep an eye on her blog for future cute things that I really, really need!! Although Jim keeps saying that I don't need one more bag. I find he is getting a little annoying about it actually -- so he hasn't yet seen the coffee cup bag!

Now for the next incredibly cute item. This is a little bear that one of the ladies from my Friday quilting group made for each of us in the group. Thanks so much to Barbara for this little guy.

He is only about 3 inches high. Isn't he cute!

Look at that cute little face..............

Well.. enough cuteness for one night.
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Friday, November 21, 2008

Pattern for new Oven mitts

A few months ago I bought a pattern for Oven mitts from a quilt shop in Vancouver. It is their own pattern. There were kits as well with the cutest Mary Englebreit fabric - but I just bought the pattern - and then promptly stuck the pattern away with the rest of my patterns. But knowing I BADLY needed new oven mitts I had plans that one day soon I would make some new oven mitts.

Well that day will be VERY soon -- Jenny decided the oven mitts must be food!! I am sure it was pretty tasty. They really are a disaster and I can't even remember how many year ago I bought them. Anyway.............. I got my Moda Fat Quarter Club this month and it was Mary Englebreit - Recipe for Friendship - perfect for a new pair of oven mitts.

That day will have to wait for a while yet though. We are off again on a little trip. We are going down to Seattle for 5 days. Jim has to work and I am just going to tag along and have a little holiday.

It seems we have been away so much this year - or at least I have been away a lot this year. No big travel plan yet for next year so I think there will be a little less traveling - the plan for this year is a little kitchen renovation.

I am looking forward to this trip. Seattle is so close and we don't very often go down and stay for a few days - usually it is just a day trip here and there or just passing through on our way somewhere else. It will be nice to have a few days to wander around Pike's Market and enjoy walking around downtown and finding places to stop for a good cup of coffee - searching out a quilt shop or two - maybe doing a bit of Christmas shopping.

I got all the fabric I need for my Morris Garden quilt. I ordered fabric from two different online shops -- The Door Mouse and the Just for Fun Fabrics both shops were very good and easy to deal with. I usually just order everything from The Fat Quarter Club but they didn't have the fabric. I was thrilled to be able to find the missing piece. I was quite disappointed that Hancock's couldn't have been a bit more helpful.

Of course I ordered more that just that one piece! I also ordered 2 yards of the medium blue fabric for the outside borders.

( I have just had to switch computers in mid sentence. The lab top just died - hopefully not permanently!!) I am planning to take the lap top with me to Seattle and keep up with my email and such - but we will see if it recovers. Maybe I will come back from Seattle with a new lap top instead of fabric ---- okay - I can dream can't I!

I am not planning on getting much fabric as I have enough to keep me happy for a while in the new sewing room - and the Canadian dollar is a little on the low side right now - but you just never know!
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Sunday, November 16, 2008

Blogging friends forever

Kieny - The Dutchlady - my blogging friend from Taiwan gave me this award. It is such a lovely award to receive!

The rules are :
-that you give this award to four dedicated followers of your blog;
-and to one person who is new to your blog and lives on the other side of the world.
-Link back to the person who gave you this award.

I would like to pass it along to four followers of my blog --

Quiltmom A long time follower of my blog who just recently started blogging herself! I got to have lunch with Anna in Red Deer. It is always so nice to meet fellow bloggers.

Wendy - Snippets of a Quilter --- we live close enough to each other that we got to meet for lunch as well - and I am working on getting Wendy over for a visit to teach me how to do that wonderful stitching that she does.

Carole - Quilting Adventures -- one day Wendy and I will hopefully talk Carole into making a trip out west.

San - Gypsy Quilter - who was my Secret Santa Christmas partner last year and has stayed with me ever since and she sent that lovely little quilt for dear little Hunter.

Andrea - from Tierra del Fueg0 is probably my farthest away follower but she has been following my blog for some time -- but I thought I would include her because she is so far away and so sweet and I enjoy my visits with her as well!

Micki - Irish Muses - is a recent visitor to my blog and she is far away in Ireland.

Isn't the internet wonderful?

I decided to bring out the little featherweight machine to work on the Gladiola quilt - pictured in the previous post. The fabric is a bit of a vintage design - so I thought I would give the featherweight a bit of exercise. It is still sewing like a dream. And so much fun to play with.

Doesn't it look lovely -- sitting on my Tazzie mat with my Darlene pin cushion at her side. I think she might need to be out for exercise a little more often. It was last year when I took her to the retreat that she was used last. I think she might even need a name.... I wonder if that is a little too much -LOL.

Well -- I am off to the quilt shop...........

Jim says that this quilting seems to be more about the "stuff" --- I said it's ALL about the "stuff" !!!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Back from a very eventful retreat

I have been back from my retreat for a couple of days but I have been unable to type much until today.

Here is a view from my chair at the retreat. It is held on an island just a short ferry ride away from Horseshoe Bay. The place we stay is right off the water. It is a lovely little spot -- I don't think I spent more than 30 minutes outside for the entire 3 days. I was busy! There was a hot tub there to ease our aching backs though and I did sit in that for a few minutes one night.

I finished my bag - which turned out great --- finished the Christmas stocking for little Hunter. I made a little bag from a "This and That" pattern - which didn't turn out that great and I started a quilt from a kit I bought in 2004.

And I injured myself -- twice. First injury was a bit of a freak accident. My little sewing snips ( the ones that are sharp and always open and you squeeze them together to snip threads) were sitting on the table in front of my machine - where I usually keep them and I knocked them off the table and they started to fall to the floor --- so I very quickly closed my legs together to catch them before they fell to the ground.

I hope you don't mind the picture but I completely impaled the snips into my thigh -- look at that bruise!

Then later that same night I cut my right thumb with the rotary cutter -- right through the nail ---- ohhh now that one hurt. I completely cut about 1/4 of the nail away. I have no idea how deep it is or if I should have gone to get stitches - I just held tight and hoped I didn't bleed on my fabric. It was pretty sore most of the week and I haven't been able to do much with my right hand until today. It is healing nicely though but I am sure that the severed nail will be falling off soon. ( I didn't think you needed a picture of that one!!)

And the last picture is the quilt that I started from the kit. It isn't a great picture of the quilt but I had spread it out today to measure it for the borders and here.... to prove that quilts are not just cat magnets!!

I am heading off to work a couple of shifts tomorrow. I was thinking I might not be able to work with this thumb but it seems to be healing fairly well and I find that if I wear a finger cot and don't hit my thumb on the fridge door ---ohhh that one hurt! I think I will be fine - wish me luck!
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Thursday, November 06, 2008

A new product

This is a new Pellon product -- or new to me anyway.

It is a very light weight fusible web with a one inch on point grid.

I decided to try it for the Christmas stockings that I like to make - I would find making the scrappy on point "fabric piece" for the stocking shape to be quite time consuming.

You cut your squares of fabric to fit on a one inch grid -- but slightly smaller - these squares are cut 2 7/8 inches - so there is a little space between each piece. You iron them on the grid and then just sew seams of 1.4 inch along in each direction.

It was quite quick and easy and then gives me a big piece of fabric squares to cut out my pattern.

This is the stocking I made last year. Now I need to make one for little Hunter!!

I am just quickly typing this up as I am waiting to be picked up for my 3 day weekend quilting retreat. My first goal of the retreat is to make little Hunter a Christmas stocking. But of course I have packed up my entire quilting room to take along!!

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Tuesday, November 04, 2008

A bit of this and that

I am quite happily puttering away in my reorganized sewing space. I finished my November BOM on the weekend. Jim has reorganized the other side of the room and set up the stereo. The record player is working great and it is so much fun to listen to the old records as I was sewing my block -- remember "Rubberband Man" What a hoot! That was "The Spinners" back in our Disco days (or was it daze?)

I am getting ready to go off to Bowen Island for a three day retreat this weekend. It is so nice to look through my fabrics and patterns to pick out things for the retreat.

The other thing I did this week is figure out how to use my EQ6 program! I was so excited to make a real block. Probably if I had read through the book I would have figured it out a lot sooner!! But anyway.... I have a number of pictures I have saved of quilts I would like to make one day. My plan was to draft the blocks in EQ6 - so finally I can maybe start on that a bit.

This is the first block I have drafted. It was a quilt I saw on a blog. I want to use the Morris Garden by Moda fat quarter collection that I bought from Hancock's in a few months ago. There is a really great pattern for this collection - "Stepping Stones Quilt" Nancy Near Philadelphia is making one. I really like that pattern as well. But I am planning to make one with this block - I have no idea what the name of the block is - anyone know?

So this is my plan for the retreat - to make these blocks - with my Morris Garden fabric.

When I received my fat quarter bundle - months ago. I discovered that I was missing one fat quarter of the collection. Hancock's substituted another fabric - which didn't belong to the collection at all and I have no idea where it came from. I sent them an email and they said at the time they were out of the one fabric and if I wanted I could send the bundle back for a refund. I didn't want to send the entire bundle back and they never offered to send me the fabric when they could - I think I asked if they could send me the fabric but they never responded. I have been looking around the internet - eBay, and various online shops and it seems there isn't any of this fabric anywhere to be found. I find that amazing. I was hoping to find a piece of it - before I started the quilt -- but no such luck. I will go ahead and make the quilt anyway - maybe one day I will find a piece on eBay or somewhere. If anyone sees some of this fabric in there web surfing - send me a link if you get a chance.

And now that we are finished with all of this -- here is a little of that....

Jim filleting up a really big fish!

It is a very large Chum salmon that he cut up and smoked last weekend -- in the midst of building my shelves. Now it needs to be vacuum packed --- so off I go to help.
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