Friday, January 30, 2009

A New Squishy!

A squishy arrived in my mailbox today!!! And it came all the way from Nottingham, UK!!! My friend Quilter1962.. well that is her chat name from the Quilting Board gave me these gorgeous Fat Quarters today!

We were involved in a Valentine's FQ exchange on the board. I just love the fabrics she sent me, and can't wait to create something with them! I am thinking I might use the 2 FQs with the different squares in them and use them as the centers for small courthouse step blocks. Perhaps I'll make it into a little wallhanging.

I listening to the local weather forecast earlier today and we might be in for a wee bit of snow storm this weekend. We could get up to 30cm of snow by the time it's all said and done. I think it's the perfect kind of weather to be sewing in! Tonight I picked up the thread I want to use to start free motion quilting Celtic Knots for the Double Irish Chain. I have about 15 minutes left of basting the quilt and then that baby is going on the machine! I can't WAIT to start the free motion work again!

Tomorrow I start up my classes again for the winter session. I have a 9 week Double Irish Chain class. It is a small class of only three women, but it will be a good one. As I did before, I will post photos as the girls progress through their quilt making. Tomorrow we will just be getting the fabrics ready and cut. Next week they will start the actual sewing.

Well I'm off to bed. It's almost 11:30 and I'm ready to get some sleep. It was another very busy work week and I'm looking forward to a couple of nice relaxing, and of course quilty, days!

Quiltingly Yours

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

A Bit of This... A Bit of That

I haven't really done alot of one thing the last couple of days. Actually to tell you the truth, I find lately once I come home from a day at work, I am a zombie and just have no energy after supper is done and the dishes cleaned to do anything else! Maybe it's also the cold cold BITTER freezing temperatures we have been experiencing the last couple of weeks that is causing this blah feeling. The temperatures with windchill have reached about -27 degrees celsius BRrrrrrrrrrrrr... I know up in Labrador they are having to live with almost -50!!!! I noticed on the news last week that schools were closed in that part of the province as it was too cold for children to be going back and forth to school in those frigid temperatures! Exposed skin can freeze in minutes!!! I hope this cold snap ends soon!! I hate the cold!

I have had to force myself to do something the last couple of evenings. Sunday night I managed to get most of the January Country Calendar BOM block completed. If Mum didn't come over to visit this evening, I would have tried to complete it, perhaps tomorrow. I only have to add the borders and embroider the Month on the block. I really want to complete this block before the month is out.

The other project I wanted to get working on was getting the Double Irish Chain Quilt layered and ready for quilting. I managed to get most of it basted.

I would have had it all completed if it wasn't for spending about an hour ordering fabrics from Thousands of Bolts for my one of a kind flip flop bags I am getting ready to make up and sell again this year. I also had a wonderful 45 minute chat with my friend Marsha. She asked me if I received the latest Connecting Threads Catalog. Up to last night I didn't but wished I did as she told me some of the new kits and fabrics and patterns available. But lo and behold my beautiful magazine arrived!!!!!!!! ooooooooh the stuff I wanted to buy!

By the way those post it notes are not mine!!! Mum took a glance through the book tonight and picked out the things she wanted to order! I love having a Mum with an addiction for quilting like I have!

ANYWAY, getting sidetracked, so yeah, by the time 11pm came last night I just didn't have it in me to finish basting the quilt. Not to mention I got caught up watching the tv series 24. I am not a tv person, and could care less if the old 'boob tube' as my Mum once called it is even on! Trevor told me about the show and how good it is. I decided to see what all the hype was about and now I hate to see the hour over and the show done for another week!! Awesome show!!!!!!

So hopefully I will only need another15-20 minutes and the quilt will be basted and ready for free motion quilting! I can't WAIT to get started on it again!

It's hard to tell if we are going our sewing group will meet this Thursday night as forecast is calling for a snow storm. hmmmm I wonder if this could mean a snow day??? I would really love a day to sleep in during the week, then get up and sew all day and all night! We still have another month and a half or so left of the winter season, so we might get a snow day yet!!! Keeping my fingers crossed!

Well its 11:30pm here. I had every intention to getting to bed earlier tonight, but well that didn't happen! So I am off to la la land now. I have another fun filled work day ahead of me in the morning.

Quiltingly Yours

Saturday, January 24, 2009

The Road to my Trapunto Quilt

And so it begins, the long road to making my queen size trapunto quilt. Thursday night I took my traced blocks down to Mum's place for our Thursday Night Sewing Group. I took over the dining room table and set out all my pieces. So far I have 12 blocks cut, and only 8 of those were traced. I started to sew the two layers of batting to each design part of the first block. I have so much left over batting pieces from previous projects, this is going to be a great way to use them up and make more room for other things. I only managed to get one block trapuntoed with batting. I will make up a few more of these before I start layering the thinner batting and the backing to each block and start the stippling. Then you will REALLY see the trapunto coming to life!

I had hoped to show you some photos of the design Marsha was going to use for her quilt, but unfortunately she and her hubby have started some home renovations, and she couldn't make it to sewing night. Perhaps next week she will be with us and I'll try to get some photos then.

In the meantime, I did manage to take a photo of a scrap quilt Mum is working on. She finished basting it the other night and she is now getting ready to mark it for cross hatching. As you can see Missy had to get in on the action and test out the quilt for comfort. I think cats have this internal radar and now the exact moment a quilt is going on the floor or on the bed. She could be at the other end of the house, but once that quilt is available she comes out of nowhere to check it out!! Silly cat! Quilts are huge magnets to cats!

As for deciding on the Snowman BOM I talked about a few days ago and asked you to help me to decide on one, I think I have decided to go with the Hot Chocolate BOM. I was first leaning towards the Snowman Collector, but then thought more about it. It seems just about every quilt I do has some kind of order and organization to it. The other snowman boms seemed to be a little more disorderly and have random size blocks. The Hot Chocolate one is only 60" x 60" whereas the Snowman Collector is more a full bed size, it is a seasonal quilt, and the Hot Chocolate will be nice to curl up under while on the couch watching a movie or reading a book. I will sign up for this bom this weekend. I can't wait to get the first installment in the mail!! woo hooo! Thanks to everyone who gave me their suggestions on which BOM to do!!

Well it is almost 11:30 Saturday morning. I am meeting up with Mum for a few hours today to clean out the storage room in her apartment. Alot of stuff down there is mine and things I collected over the year for my house (which I will hunting for in the next few months.. can't WAIT). We are going to box up some of this stuff and store it in my UHaul unit. After supper Trevor and I are off to visit our friends Mark and Dodi. Mark's birthday was Thursday and so we are off to celebrate. Dodi suggested we have a games night. So we will be spending the night playing Cranium, Pictionary, Planet Earth DVD Trivia, and who knows what else. So no quilting today, but hopefully tomorrow I'll be back at it again.

Quiltingly Yours

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Trapunto Quilt Challenge

I have always loved the look of Trapunto. It is like making a whole cloth quilt but in little sections at a time!

I couple years ago I taught a class on trapunto. My students made beautiful table runners. One of the girls in my class became good friends with me and she now sews in our Thursday night sewing group. Marsha fell in love with Trapunto from the very beginning and this past Christmas made 3 more runners! We both said we would love to challenge ourselves to making full size Trapunto quilts for our beds. Well the challenge is on! I started cutting out my squares last Thursday night. Marsha couldn't make the sewing group that night but I believe she will be with us tomorrow. She plans to start this then too.

Below is one of my favourite trapunto books. Over the last couple of weeks, I have been looking through the book and trying to decide on a pattern. I knew I needed something that I wasn't going to get tired and sick of halfway through the project.

This is what I came up with! At the moment I have 12 blocks cut and just six of those are traced using my portable light box. Tonight I plan to get the remaining six blocks traced. By tomorrow night (Thursday) I should be ready to get a start on the trapunto work. I have a nice stock of wash away thread to get me started, and a pile of old pieces of batting from cut aways from quilts, and left overs. I think this will be a great way to use up all those bits and pieces of batting lying around!

I think I will bring my camera with me tomorrow night and take some photos of what pattern(s) Marsha intends to use. Maybe I'll try to get some of the other girls working on their projects. It might be difficult as I don't think they like their photos taken. I know for sure Mum hates it! But I might be able to take photos of what they are working on.

So on that note, I am off to get some more tracing done of my squares.

Quiltingly Yours

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Double Irish Chain Status

I have made this quilt many many times, but I have to say this is the first time I have put this quilt together as quick as this! I started this quilt Saturday night. All I have left to do is sew on the borders!

This is the Double Irish Chain quilt that I am making for Trevor's parents. They are celebrating their 43rd wedding anniversary this coming March. His father asked me over the holidays if I would make a quilt for his wife as a gift. I made them a Christmas tree skirt for Christmas this year and she loved it. She said she would love to have a quilt one day. Mr. B (Best) knew then what he would like to give his wife for their anniversary.

Here are the two blocks that make up the quilt.

Here is the quilt so far, minus the borders

Hopefully if I feel up to it later after supper (I have been under the weather the last couple days and resting at home) I hope to have the borders on. I will be putting on a small rust border and a larger beige border so I can show more of the quilting I want to do with it. The ideas have been going crazy through my head how I want to quilt this. I can't wait to start the free motion quilting on this baby!

I have been hmmming and hawing over some snowman BOMs and having a really difficult time deciding which one to go with. I love them all, but only plan to do one of them. I was hoping you all could help me out with my decision process. Here are the quilts:

The Snowman Collector

Hot Chocolate

Blizzard Bunch

Family Renunion

I appreciate all help you can give me! If some of you out there have made any of these quilts, let me know! I would like to applique by hand as I love the hand method over machine.

I hope to order the BOM by this weekend if possible! I Loooooooove Snowmen and really want to make one of these quilts!

Well I think I'm going to lie down for a little bit, maybe watch some of the Obama Inauguration. I am not an American but hey it is an historical moment for that country for sure! I was looking at some of the coverage on CNN this morning while wrapped up in a quilt on the couch and they figure some 2,000,000 people will be there! It was amazing watching the cameras pan over the crowds!!! They even mentioned the crowds are almost 2 miles long!!! That's insane!!! I would really hate to be in the middle of that crowd then have to go to the bathroom!! LOL

So to all my American friends out there in blogland, congratulations on this historical day for you!

Quiltingly Yours

Saturday, January 17, 2009

January Project Complete!!!

I put the final stitches in the binding this evening!!! Woo hooo!! This was my first attempt at free motion quilting a full quilt and I am really pleased with the results! I really loved how you didn't have to pull and push the quilt through that narrow area of the sewing machine while quilting. I still have a lot of practicing to do, but I know I will want to quilt my quilts this way from now on! Not to mention it is so much FUN!!!!! Here are a few photos of the final product!!!

I decided to make this my January Project to complete for the One Project a Month Challenge

The reason the photo below is darker is because I turned off the flash as I noticed a close up with the flash only made it look too bright and you couldn't see the quilted designs. I actually used an unbleached cotton for my backing.

For my next project, I will hope to get a start on cutting out the Double Irish Chain quilt I am making Trevor's parents for their wedding anniversary. Their anniversary is the middle of March. I started washing the fabrics this evening. Tomorrow I plan to get a good start on this quilt. I have made it several times in the past and I love this pattern. I found a really nice Celtic Knot design to machine quilt in the centre areas.

I have the place to myself this evening as Trevor is working another overnight shift. Since I didn't feel like taking out my machine, I set up my Grandmother's Garden fabrics on the dining room table and thought I would cut out and prepare more fabric pieces to recycled file folder patterns. I started hand stitching this project back in September. Tonight I counted 8 completed blocks. In total I think I am putting together 24. So I guess this means I am a third of the way through making the blocks. Cool! I'm in no hurry to finish this one, so if it takes me a couple years, that's okay.

While cutting and pasting, I was watching Moulin Rouge. The one with Nicole Kidman and Ewan McGregor. It was a bit weird in the beginning, but I found myself getting into it more. I find both are great actors and enjoy other movies by them.

Recently Trevor and I have been watching a show called "The Long Way Down". It is based on a road trip Ewan McGregor and his best friend Charlie did on motorcycles. They drove from London to Mongolia, through Russia, flew to Alaska then continued their trip to New York City. What an amazing trip! We haven't finished watching the whole show. I think the last episode we watched was when they made it to Alberta. What an amazing trip to take! I would love to travel more and see more countries and cultures. So far I have travelled to almost every province. I even lived in the North West Territories for a bit. What a culture shock that was! I mean it was hard to adjust to 24 hours of daylight and a different way of life and believe you were still living in Canada! I drove from Nova Scotia to Florida one summer, and enjoyed everything I saw along the way. I have been to the Dominican and to Cuba. But of the travels I have done so far, I think my favourite and most memorable as been to Turkey. I travelled by myself when I was 21 years old to visit two penpals (yep, there were no emails then.. all letter writing by hand) from Istanbul and Ankara. I fell in love with the country, the food, the culture, the sounds, everything about it! I think this is why I am enjoying the show "Long Way Round" so much. To get out of the norm as we know it and see how other people live! Perhaps one day I will share my trip in more detail. I still keep in touch with Sinan and Pelin. I will get back there someday!

Well should be going. It is going for midnight and I still want to complete pasting a few more fabric pieces to the hexagons I made out of file folders. I work on this project over my lunch hours at work, so I need more pieces cut out and ready to sew.

As for my January project, I will now add a tick or the project next to JANUARY on my side bar. It's a good feeling to complete something off my 2009 list! I will tackle another UFO soon for February. Or maybe I will make the Double Irish Chain quilt my project to finish for February. We shall see :)

Quiltingly Yours

Monday, January 12, 2009

Still Here

I didn't plan or mean to be a week before posting another thread, but I guess life gets in the way sometimes and the things you want to do have to be postponed.

This past week saw me taking down two Christmas trees (ours and Mum's), meetings at work, the craziness of work, organizing things I want to take care of this year, one dinner party at Mum's place, and of course my sewing! Whew!!!

Yeah so I am close to finishing the free motion quilting of my Gentleman's Fancy quilt. I just have about 6-8 more designs to quilt along the borders and then to add the binding. My goal for this evening is to complete the quilting of the quilt, remove all the basting threads and tidy up all the thread strings. By tomorrow night I want to get the binding machine binded to one side. I will then take my time and hand bind the other side. Hopefully by the weekend I can complete this project. I am making this project as the one to complete for this month.

My next project is to get started on cutting the fabrics for the Double Irish Chain quilt I am making Trevor's parents for their wedding anniversary this coming March. I have made several of these quilts, and know they are a good easy quilt to assemble. And of course I want to play more with free motion quilting! I found this really nice Celtic Knot design to try out.

Here is a photo of the fabrics I plan to use in this quilt. This will be a double size quilt. I want to do something nice along the borders too. I'll figure that out when the time comes.

Thursday night we will start up our Quilting Night at Mum's place again for the new year. Myself and Marsha will get a start on our Trapunto Quilts, and Theresa plans to start a Trapunto Table Runner. Mum hopes to layer a quilt, and I'm not sure yet what Kelly has planned for her next project. We are all looking forward to getting back into the swing of our quilting nights again.

Well if I plan to see my goal through of finishing the quilting of my quilt tonight, I best kick myself into gear and get back into quilting mode again.

Til next time!

Quiltingly Yours

Monday, January 5, 2009

Quick Update on the Machine Quilting

Just a quick note to say I managed to get the main part of the quilt quilted. Tomorrow night after supper I will tackle the large green border. I found a nice leaf shape feather pattern and took some copies of it today. I enlarged it a few times to get the right size I want.

I have been quilting for the last 3 hours straight. It's after 11pm now, and I'm going to call it a night. Back to it tomorrow. I'll keep you posted!

Nothing else much to report quilting wise. Other than quilting I was back to work again this morning and back to routine.

Quiltingly Yours

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Free Motion Quilting Mad Woman

Had I known free motion quilting was this much fun I would have done it YEARS ago!!! I mentioned yesterday how I decided to tackle one of my projects on my list and teach myself free motion quilting, well I am HOOKED! It is far from perfect, and I am using invisible thread on the top to hide all my flaws, but I'm really liking how it is turning out! Here is a photo of how it looks o the back!

I am not ready to show the front yet as I still have to clean it up a bit. Since I am using tracing paper, there are still lots of teeny tiny little bits hanging around the stitches and just being stubborn. I am trying to clean them off the best way I can. So far I have heard from my quilting friends to use tweezers, the tacky tape lint rollers and to wash it. I hope that works. I managed to quilt 14 of these designs onto my quilt so far and I still have another 14 to go, as well as many half designs for the side pieces. After that I want to look for a design to put along the wide green border.

I have also decided to make this my project to complete in January. I signed up with the One Project a Month Challenge. You will see the "Tag Along Teddy" link further down along the side of my blog. Each month they challenge you to complete at least one of your projects that you wish to complete in the year. To motivate you to complete these monthly projects, you have the chance of winning prizes! Just go to their website and read more about it!

Another project I wanted to do throughout the year was to find a nice BOM online. I was reading one of my favourite blogs from fellow blogger Quilter Going Bananas and she found a nice BOM you can either stitch or applique. It is found here at:

This month's block is a snowman! I adore snowmen and I can't wait to pull my fabrics to start this little fella! I think I will applique him as I have been wanting to get back into applique again.

Well I best get back to my quilting again. This is my last day of the Christmas holidays before heading back to work in the morning and back to routine again. I want to make this a good productive day!

Quiltingly Yours

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Sewing Plans for 2009

Sometime during the first week of January I like to compile a list of the projects I would like to see myself work on and/or complete by the end of the year. This is my quilt journal I use to list my yearly projects.

I am going to see how to make a list on the side of my blog and cross them out and date them as they are completed. So far my 2009 list goes like this:
  • Start my Queen Size Trapunto Quilt (can't wait to start Marsha)!!! My friend Marsha is also making one along with me.
  • Complete my Crumb Quilt
  • Make a Double Irish Chain quilt for Trevor's parents for their wedding anniversary this March
  • New Zealand Scrap Quilt (I started it 2 years ago and never finished making the blocks)
  • Layer and Quilt at least 2 of my Queen Size quilts for my bed
  • Make up 2 quilts for my Spring Classes
  • Make up 2 quilts for my Fall Classes
  • Grandmother's Garden Quilt
  • Learn to Free Motion Machine Quilt (to be attempted today)!!
  • 2 sets of Placemats
  • Complete Cross Stitching my Christmas Wreath Wallhanging
  • Hand Quilt one of my quilts
  • Complete at least 3 of my UFOs if not more
I also know my list will grow throughout the year!

This list doesn't include all the things I want to make up and sell this year. This list also doesn't include the gifts I plan to make for next Christmas. But saying that I DO also make my list up in January of what gifts I will make throughout the year. That way I can start them early and won't be rushing in the end to complete them all! I have that list just about done. I still have to come up with 2 more ideas for 2 friends. But there is still time for that!

Today we are expecting a snow storm of about 15-20 cm of snow, complete with high winds. Hopefully it won't be as nasty as what PEI and Nova Scotia got recently. The poor souls even lost their power. I hope those of you over that way are restored again and shovelled out.

I have decided to start one of the things on my list and that is to teach myself Free Motion Machine Quilting. I have done trapunto before and it is the same idea, except this time it will be a full size quilt instead of the quilt as you go blocks that I do in Trapunto. I found this roll of quilting paper through

It seems with this paper, I can trace out my design once, layer the paper up to 15 layers thick, pin together and then needle punch on the machine through the stack with an unthreaded needle. I can pin the papers to the area I want to quilt and quilt the design. Once its quilted, I can just tear the paper away. I bought the roll back in November and just couldn't wait to try it out. Well today is the day!

Here is the quilt I am going to attempt! It is a lap size "Gentleman's Fancy" I figured I would start small.

I also picked up the special quilting gloves. Marsha swears by them and I have a few other students who use them and love them.

So off I go to do some free motion quilting! I have Josh Groban from my playlist here on my blog serenading me as I try this out! Wish me luck!

Quiltingly Yours

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year!!!

I like to take January 1st to look back on the year before and I must say, 2008 was a good year.

January took Trevor and I on the journey of snow shoeing, and I must say we really enjoyed it! We had a lot of fun trudging through the deep snow and we managed to stay upright!! Hopefully we will get to do more this January.

I first came across this fantastic quilting website in in February. I made some wonderful friends there that I hope to meet face to face some day. The men and women there inspire me to no end.

March brought one last final nasty snow storm for the winter season (March 17th, St. Patrick's Day) and the snow came up the side of the patio door over 5 feet high. It took me 2 hours to shovel out that patio, and while jumping out into the snow on the deck I almost slid off the patio (by the way did I mention we are on the third floor of this condo)!! Whew, luckly I managed to dig my feet in before going over! lol

Dig out 2008. I think I had to shovel out that patio 2 or 3 times last winter!

Trevor and I found two wonderful friends in Mark and Dodi. Trevor and Mark work together. Since April the four of us have done many great things together from concerts, to barbeques, to camping, hiking and just having little house parties of the 4 of us!

Left to Right Mark, Dodi, Trevor and me!

One of our favourite hiking trails along the Newfoundland East Coast Trail is LaManche along the Southern Shore.

Trevor and I took our first big trip together to Cuba in April-May

Where we stayed. It was a beautiful resort

In the town of Varadaro under a Banyan Tree. Those trees are HUGE!

All the roots from the banyan tree are exposed.

One of the common areas of the resort

In old Havana

Old Havana. There are so many of these old cars down there. That is what the local people drive

A row of the yummy and delicious Mojitos!!!

An old church in Havana

Doesn't she look like George Burn's sister!!!!

Diving through the waves. I loved it!

This little fella was on my head a moment before this photo was taken!

Other local reptiles of Cuba

We took a 2 day rambo tour, hiking through the Cuban Jungle. We are getting ready to hike down through a maze of rivers and waterfalls.

In Trinidad, Cuba. One of our favourite places

After the rambo tour, still in the mountains of Cuba

That summer we managed to get in more camping than the year before. We also took a great little road trip to Bonavista, camped and explored along the way in August.

Woody Island, Newfoundland

Along the Bonavista Trail we set up camp

I love taking photos like this

This is what the coastline of Newfoundland looks like. This was along the beautiful Sperwick hiking trail in Bonavista

The Newfoundland bird, the Puffin, also known as the parrot of the sea. These are cute little sea birds

Spiller's Cove. Where my Grandfather Flemming was from

That September I was back to teaching my quilt classes twice a week. I also sold more of my products and designs than any other year I have been doing this.

Christmas was a wonderful time this year and I have to say as usual I ate alot!!! Ahhh but that is what it's all about isn't it! Although I must say, I don't feel I over did it this year.

Last night, New Year's Eve, Trevor and I had a little house party here in the condo. We had Mark and Dodi, and our friend Jody over. I made up a huge fondue on the dining room table that consisted of an oil (with basil and oregano) fondue, an Asian beef broth fondue, a creamy cream cheese/parmesan fondue, and of course the night wouldn't be complete without the orange flavoured chocolate fondue! OOh I also had my grilling stone on the table to grill. I had beef, chicken, shrimp, peppers, mushrooms to grill and fondue, lots of baguette bread for the cheese fondue, and for the chocolate I had sponge cake, marshmallows, apples, oranges, bananas. What a feast!!!

The Fondue Spread

I think he likes it!!

Me and Dodi

Trevor and his buddy Jody

Mark and Dodi

Da bys in de band playing some Van Halen. I think they both wanna be Eddie Van Halen :)

Dodi and I jamming to Guitar Hero World Tour

We rang in the New Year with our friends around us and that makes the best New Years Eve of all.

Now that we are into 2009, there are so many things I am looking forward to. This will be a big year for me as I am hoping to buy my first house this Spring/Summer. Trevor and I have booked our flight to Vancouver in April to spend our holidays out that way with friends who live there. And of course I will have a pile of projects I am just itching to get started on.

Over the next few days, I will start my yearly list of all the projects I would like to see me working on or even complete. Of course on that list will be things I want to sell. I have many designs in mind. I think there is a way I can post a list on my blog and cross things out as they are done. I have seen it on other blogs I have looked at. If anyone out there can help with with that I would greatly appreciate it!

From our home to yours
Happy New Year!!!

Quiltingly Yours