Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Vintage Pincushions

Last week, I found this "new" LeeWards pincushion set at our thrift store for $2.49.  The wool is so bright and saturated, the pictures really don't do it justice.  

I wish they still made stuff like this.  I like embroidery too, but there's something about crewel.  Maybe it's the linen and wool, it reminds me of my Granny.  She bought me a kit like this when I was 5, to teach me to stitch.  It was a gaudy parrot, and I had the best time doing it.  I even had golden stork scissors, which were my prized possession for many, many, years.  Granny always told me not to cut paper with them, and I listened.  But I probably opened glue bottles, snipped plastic canvas, and otherwise abused them.  My husband bought me the Gingher pair in the photo several years ago when the others were too rusted to cut thread.

I changed the colors around a bit.  Wasn't feeling the rust orange for my sewing room.  I've got my eye on the bee and flower next.  It has a turkey work stitch I haven't tried yet.  The excitement never really ends over here.

Happy Tuesday!

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Quilt for a Boy

Awhile back, I made a friendship star quilt from a billion HST's, and some of my obsessively collected red and whites.

Friendship Star, after first washing
Friendship Star, back

It's lived on and off my couch.  But was recently adopted by a boy with a cold.  After the boy recovered from the cold, the quilt never made it back to the couch.  And after a recent washing, the quilt was smuggled back to the bunk bed of this boy.

Coughing boy with well washed quilt; present day.

Poor asthmatic boy is sick again.  Another cold.  I can't do anything for him but give him love and hold his inhaler for him until he recovers.  So, I decided to add the missing piece to my friendship star quilt.

Quilts deserve love, and labels.

He came over while I was stitching, and asked what I was doing.  I said, "Well, I can't decide whether this should say Mom or Mommy."  When he realized it was for him, he gave me a hug, and said, "MOMMY!"  That's better than just about anything from a very cool 9 year old, don't you think?

Linking up to finish it up Friday @ crazymomquilts  I'm calling this one officially finished.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Scrappy Trip Along - Part 4

Quilted, bound and washed!  Feels good to have this one ready to bring up to the cabin this weekend.
Blurry photo attempt.

Pieced quilt back

I think I set a personal best for speed on this one.  Feburary 3rd to 20th, 17 days!  I did a simple crosshatch pattern (every other diagonal) to quilt it, and stitched in the ditch around the borders.  My only regret is not using a solid for the binding.  I picked out the red check when I was doing plain navy borders, and I should have reevaluated when I went for scrappy borders.  It's a little busy.  Oh well.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Scrappy Trip Along - Part 3 (and some weekend sewing)

This weekend was my good friend Janet's birthday.  She's a crafty girl, and homemade gift worthy, so I always try to make her a little something.  This year, it was an embroidered flour sack towel for her cabin.  It was freezing out this weekend, so I had some time to add a little extra to it.  
Favorite sewing spot.
That box of floss has been with me since my middle-school friendship bracelet making days.
It has a Rag Shop logo on it.  Do they still have those?
And although she could do pretty much anything she wanted to on her birthday, she's the type of friend who chose to spend it being silly with my kids downtown at our local Fire and Ice chili festival.
Perfect day for ice sculptures...no melting here!

Boys getting to sit in her awesome truck before it goes to the painter.

The kids are off from school for President's Day today, but I still snuck upstairs to do a little sewing while they played Pokemon.

I had a stack of 2.5" squares leftover from cutting my 16" strips from the width of my fabric, so I decided to put them to use.  I was amazed that they made it all the way around with some to spare!  I had already cut 3" strips from the navy dot, so I just cut those in half.  I still plan on using the red check binding, but I like this better than my original plan for a solid border.  Hopefully the boys will give me a little time for pressing it later on today.  Progress!

Scrappy Trip with Borders!
Thread color suggestions for quilting?  I'm thinking white may be too stark, and navy too dark, med. blue?

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

"I asked her for Adidas and she bought me Zips!"

I remember taping that song (yes, onto cassette tapes) off the radio.  Now I have become *that* parent.  And I am confident my children will never understand why I need a bin full of zippers.

I can't pass by a bag of them at the thrift store without snatching them up.  The problem is not that I have too many, but that I can no longer close the bin.  Maybe the bin is the problem.

One day, when I'm dead and gone, my children will donate my bin to the thrift store.  Full circle.
Problem bin

Anyway, when I saw this project on A Quilters Table, it called to me.  Three zippers!  So clever!

My Three Zip Pouch

I had a little bit of trouble with the last step.  It looks great from the outside, but just under the top corners, it got a little sloppy with the fold and sew method.  It closes, just not as neatly as I'd like.  Next time I'll cut the largest lining into two pieces (13"/2 = 6.5" x 8), and sew it together at the end, like I do for regular pouches.

The tutorial was super easy to follow, and well written.  The last step thing was probably just me.  The most time consuming bit was changing my 1/4" foot to my edge stitching foot after each step.  Well, that and picking out zippers and fabric.

Will be making another for sure.


We took a little road trip to Asheville this weekend.  Biltmore was great, but one of the true highlights was when we stopped to pick up chicken minis in a local mall.  Chicken minis are a Chick-fil-A staple, a buttery yeast roll with fried chicken on it, doesn't get much better.  Except, there was a yarn shop.  IN THE MALL.

And not just any yarn shop, a really nice, nicely stocked one, with nice people.

That is how I came to start yet another hat:

While in Asheville, the boys got to experience their first-ever hotel stay.  The four of us being stuck in a hotel room with an 8:30 pm lights-out, meant I also had time to finish this:
My first Noro hat!

Still deciding what that motif is?  Spiders?  Butterflies?
Boys pointing out our awesome pool view from the hotel window.  It was an indoor  pool with a skylight.
After spending the day at Biltmore, I was impressed that they were impressed.
Good weekend.

Scrappy Trip Along - Part 2

I finally got my 20 blocks knocked out.  Assembly was tough.  I don't have the ability to let go, and let things fall where they may.  I arranged, and arranged again.  On an upside, I didn't press the finished blocks (just the tubes), and all the blocks seams, save one, nested together.

Excuse the un-pressed-ness

It looks a little small, even for a throw, so I think I may add a border, and use the red check for the binding.

What do you think?

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Scrappy Trip Along - Part 1

A few weeks ago, I pulled some taupes and yellows and aquas to make this quilt from my Urban Cowgirl stack.  It was kind of muddy, and just wasn't right.

Sunday, my LQS's had a partial bolt of an American Jane print I liked, marked down to $5 ($1/yard!)  I then found a few florals from ABC 123 I *really* liked, and it was just meant to be.  Add half a stack of Happy Campers left over from another quilt, and technically, it's still scrappy.  More fabric going out of the stash than in!

11 blocks made, 9? to go.  I'm hoping for a good lap size for the couch at the cabin.

Scrappy Heart, and Truths about Boys

I had a bunch of pink and red scraps on my cutting table from my Farmers Wife quilt, and came across this adorable heart table runner.

I thought, I'll make a pillow!

Then I remembered that I live with 3 boys and an old black dog.  Throw pillows are thrown.
photo not staged; note embroidered, Pottery Barn pillow on the floor next to the couch
I thought about a table runner.  And then looked at the milk rings and Cheerios left from this morning's breakfast.  Maybe not.  (No photo of that, I'm not embarrassing myself.)

Then, I decided on a wall hanging.  Ta Da!

Pieced heart mini-quilt
I quilted little hearts all over it.

And then I decided it would still be safer living at my Mom's house.

Happy Valentines Day, Mom and Dad!