Leo’s Mane Sew Along

Monday 26 January 2015

Design Wall Monday, Jan. 26, 2015

My design wall looks exactly the same this week as it did last week. It still has part of Texas Chain laid out, waiting for the sewing to start.
The reason that it's still waiting is that I finally did something I've been wanting to do for ages, and that's make myself a new tote bag. The colours aren't quite as red as showing in these pictures. It took me most of last week to get it done. I'm not sure if you can see them, or not, but on either side of the pocket there are a couple of metal "D" loops.
 And this is what they are for. To clamp my small purse/wallet so that I can carry them both at the same time, and not have to go digging around to the bottom of the tote bag to find it. It's an idea that's been kicking around inside my head that has finally gotten out.  I'm linking up to Judy's Design Wall Monday

Sunday 25 January 2015

Sunday Stash and Stitching Report, week 4

I finished the first of the La Passacaglia rosettes last night, and immediately started on the next one. It is so much fun simply digging through the fabrics, that it took hours just to make the decision of which ones to use next. I'm assembling these in a bit of a different order than the book suggests, working on the ones that will be nesting into each other, rather than just assembling rosettes and then putting it all together. I think I might get a better continuity of colours this way. So this one below is how far I've gotten, so far. It gets more complex past this point...........

I've been doing lots of sewing this past week. But, I finally did some shopping. Fabrics for a tote bag, and 10 yards of Kona white for backgrounds for the scrappy quilts that will be happening this year. I ended up in added numbers, this week, but it won't be too hard to get going back in the right direction.

Used this week:                                      8.15 yards
Used this year:                                     12.25 yards
Added this week:                                      15 yards
Added this year:                                        15 yards
Net stash added:                                     2.75 yards

I'm linking up to Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching and Judy's Fabric Report. The I think I'll keep going on this rosette for a while longer. This one stitched together so much faster, so far, than the first one did, which is very encouraging.

Tuesday 20 January 2015

Stash Enhancement....

We went on a road trip too Woodstock for a doctor's appointment this morning. So, we, or should I say I, decided that the fabric shop Cherished Pieces, was on the way home. It involved a bit of a southwesterly course home, rather than just west, but we won't quibble over details like that. A few weeks ago I made myself a nice little purse/wallet, and I want a tote bag to go with it. While I was rooting around in my stash for something totally unrelated, I discovered that I had two more fat quarters of the fabric that I made the outside of the purse with. But, I didn't have anything else that would play nicely with them, in big enough amounts, to make the rest of the bag. So that was my mission today, to find fabrics to go with the outer fabric of the bag, which will be the same as the outer fabric of my purse. And success was had, along with some fun, too. The light print fabric at the top will be the inside lining of the tote. The charcoal Kona will be the outside bottom. And the pink will be the outer contrast pockets, as well as the inside pockets. I think I'll probably do the straps from the charcoal and the pink . The end intent is to have a couple of D rings on one side of the outside of the tote, so that I can use the clips that are holding on the strap of the purse, and clip the purse to the outside of the tote bag. I have this pictured in my head so well, and I'm really excited about doing this, so I'm going to be working on this for the rest of the afternoon.

Monday 19 January 2015

Design Wall Monday

There's lots going on here, today. I'm sleeping much better, thanks to an increase in my prescription, so I have my energy and mojo back. I'm ready to quilt up one of my own projects. I had originally listed them on the right hand side bar of my block, from oldest to youngest, planning on quilting them in that order. But, when push came to shove, I just couldn't bring myself to load that oldest one. But then I couldn't decided which one to do. So, I took the easy way out. I texted Gail and asked her to pick a number between 1 and 13, without giving her the reason until after she picked a number. She picked number 8. So, I counted down to the quilt that was eighth on the list. It's this one. So, I'm now in the process of making a backing for it. I wanted something light in colour for it, and I also wanted it to come from stash. I have a lot of cream and tan background what-was-I-thinking fabrics that I was originally going to use. But with the white in the front of the quilt, creams and tans just didn't quite fit. I revisited my stash and found some light greens with white backgrounds that work much better. Some of it is yardage, and some of it is fat quarters. I'm squaring them all up, and cutting them to equal widths to make them easier to sew together and to make sure that backing ends up square for loading onto the frame. Some of this stuff has been in the stash for a very long time, so it's great to get it used up.
And then, if that isn't enough, I cut and started laying out a new project over the weekend. It's a pattern by one of my favourite designers....... you know who it is....... Judy Martin. It's called Texas Chain. I can't remember which book it's from, off the top of my head. This is what I've got so far. I'm using mostly a Stonehenge jelly roll, and a few other pieces from my stash to increase the contrasts in the chain. A lot of the fabrics in the jelly roll are quite alike in shade and value. So far, I'm happy with the way it looks. There are a few more rows to lay out, but I've run out of wall. I'll have to start sewing, and then add the rest. I still have a fairly wide range of colours and lights and darks left to finish it. I'm linking all this up to Judy's Design Wall Monday and also to Wips be Gone.
I'm hoping to get this backing finished today, and the quilt loaded,  and also some sewing done on Texas Chain. It's going to take a bit of thought to figure out the most efficient way to sew it together without getting up and down to take things off the wall one at a time. Sometime this week, I also want to get the last three stars sewn onto this rosette. I'd hoped to get it done yesterday, and worked at it until about 5 pm. But my eyes started to give out, and I switched to machine sewing instead. And now...... time to sew a backing together.

Sunday 18 January 2015

Stash and Stitching report, week 3, 2015

It's a lovely day indoors today, and there are even rose buds showing, unlike outside, where it is cold and damp and grey. See those tiny little rose buds, in those tiny little pentagons? I'm trying to pretend they are the real thing, but it's not working too well. This is the first rosette for La Passacaglia. It's become my go to hand stitching project lately, if only on Sundays. I'm going to link this lovely rosette to Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching and also to Sarah's Help for hex-holics, although there isn't actually a hexagon to be found in this piece.
Kathy encouraged us to actually post a picture of our hands in our slow Sunday post, so here's mine.

 This picture gives an idea of just how tiny those pieces are. I'm holding one of the rose bud pentagons and a grey triangle there. And, I think I should get bonus points. Not only did I get a picture of my hand, but I also see that I got in my bare toes-ies as well. Oh, and my working tray that's sitting on my lap, holding everything I need.... it's the top of one of those storage boxes that I'm keeping all the fabrics for this project in. It's perfect lap size, and easily goes where I go.

I was having a hard time figuring out how to count these small odd shapes for the stash report. I've decided that I'm going to give each piece an arbitrary average size of a 2 inch square. Some of them are bigger than that when they are cut, allowing for seam allowances, and some are smaller. This first rosette has 90 pieces!!

Used this week:                                          1 yard
Used this year:                                          4.1 yards
Added this week:                                        0 yards
Added this year:                                          0 yards
Net stash busted:                                    4.1 yards

I've actually cut out more than that. I cut out an entire quilt this past week, but I don't actually count stash as out until I've started sewing things together. Right now, it's in the design wall, getting the colours balanced right stage. But, that means I'll actually have something up on the wall for design wall Monday tomorrow. In the meantime, I'm also linking up to Judy's Fabric Stash report, And then I'm going to continue working on this rosette. I'd like to get it done, so I can move on to the fun of pulling fabrics for the next one.

Saturday 17 January 2015

Scrappy Saturday

I decided today that it was time to finish a rainbow scrappy project from last year. It doesn't have all the rainbow colours in it, since I wasn't really consistent on working on this each month. And then, I only had eight blocks, which wasn't enough to do anything with. I figured if I laid it out 3 blocks wide, by 3 blocks high, it would be a good quilt to donate to the Children's Aid Society, that our guild supports, but for the life of me, I couldn't figure out what to do as a centre block. When I posted this several weeks ago, someone suggested that I put a big pinwheel in the centre. What a perfect idea. so that's what I did. During my figuring for it, doing a 12 inch pinwheel for the centre required four blocks. Well, the four it needed translated into my mind into four sets of six inch finished pinwheels blocks. I was halfway through sewing them all when I had one of those hit the side of the head "duh" moments. I only need four triangles, not sixteen!! So, now I have 3 twelve inch pinwheel blocks left over that are going to be pieced into the back. However, after all that, this classifies as a finished top, measuring 42x42. I'm linking up to Scrappy Saturday. Then maybe I'll do the backing.

Friday 16 January 2015

On and off my needles

I have finally gotten around to getting my Carabe sweater blocked. And since I've also finished the Cinched Rib Cowl, I've got it blocking, too. And, I found some buttons today, finally, that should work with the sweater. Once it's all dry, I'll get the buttons onto it, and then I can wear it. And yes, I'll take a picture of me in it. The cowl is for Rebecca, and I'm not too sure how getting a picture of her in it will work, but I'll try.
In the meantime, I was supposed to be starting a pair of socks with the fun yarn that came in the mail at the beginning of the year, however, I sort of got side tracked.

You see, really, it's all Judy's fault. She was talking about having finished not one, but two projects, and how she was looking at different patterns, one was a hat pattern and the other, a sweater. Of course she gave the links for them, and of course, I followed the links.  I always follow the knitting links that Judy finds, and have made a couple of sweaters after following those links. And there are more of the projects found on those links on my favourites list. Anyway, one of them was this fabulous sweater that has really cool cables, and is perfect for a yarn that I've had hanging around for at least a year. It's a Cascade Eco+. I had originally been planning on doing a sweater out of the magazine I received for Christmas, but this new one just couldn't be resisted. The pattern is called Traveller's End. So, the day after casting off the cowl, I purchased the pattern, wound the yarn, and started this sweater. I have yet to figure out how the front cables work. There must be some stitch picking up involved, because all I'm doing right now is the back, and the raglan sleeve shaping. I do read through patterns before beginning them, just to get a brief idea what techniques are involved, but I usually just knit as I come to the instructions. This is a bulky Aran weight yarn, so it should go pretty fast. So, As soon as I finish this post, and link up to Judy's On the Needles, I'm going to go and knit some more.

Thursday 15 January 2015

Ann's Homespun Snowballs

This is the first quilt I've done for Ann. This is also the first time that I have ever worked with homespun fabrics. I don't know if it is a characteristic of all homespun fabric, but these were so soft!! I spent a lot of time petting this quilt. I just might have to start collecting homespuns. But anyway, that's getting off topic, a bit.
Ann made this quilt as a Christmas gift for her husband. I'm sure he'll spend lots of happy hours snuggling under this one.
It was quilted with an all over loop de loop pattern. This was such a lovely quilt to work on, I was sad to see it go home.

Tuesday 13 January 2015

Lorraine's String Triangles

Ok, it's time to get back to documenting customer quilts again. I believe I have five left from 2014 to write about, and then I'll be all caught up and ready to document the ones I do this year as they are returned to their owners.
This particular quilt belongs to Lorraine. It is filled with all kinds of fun and bright fabrics, string pieced into triangles. She asked for large pebbles or bubbles in the white triangles. I then did a continuous curve and a fleur de lis type design in the string triangles.
I'm not sure if the flour de lis shows up better in this close up picture, or not. I stitched in the ditch around the centre of the quilt, and then used the piecing in the border as a guide for spacing the straight line quilting for the border. What a fun quilt!

Sunday 11 January 2015

Sunday Stash and Stitching

It's Sunday, and I'm joining lots of other people taking advantage of a day of rest and relaxation and stitching by hand. I have my chair pulled up right beside the window, so I can look outside and enjoy the glory of God's creation, and the beauty of the snow, especially beautiful since I don't have to go out in it. I am in the very beginning stages of making a quilt called La Passacaglia. It involves all kinds of tiny English paper piecing shapes. It's not as bad as it sounds, though. The seams needing sewing are so small that they whip stitch together pretty quickly. I have eight more of those grey pointed stars to make and join together with the pink diamonds. Then they will get stitched to the centre section, and that will be rosette number one finished. I don't even want to think about how many are left. I'll do them one at a time, and enjoy the process of finding the perfect fabric for each element. I'm really enjoying fingering through the stash, looking for fun things to fussy cut. I am thinking, at the moment at least, that the charcoal Kona grey star points might be a constant through the quilt. But I have lots of time before I need to make that decision. It does have the bonus, though, that if I do decided to use it through the whole quilt, I know what it is, and can easily get more if I need it. And if there are differences in the dye lots, the pieces are so small that it won't be noticeable. I think I'll count the fabric used in these rosettes as they are finished, although I really don't quite know how I'm going to figure that out. Anyone have any ideas on that one?

Used this week:                                1.1 yards
Used this year:                                  3.1 yards
Added this week:                                0
Added this year:                                  0
Net used:                                            3.1 yards

I'm linking up to Judy's Stash Report and Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching. And then I'm going to peel some potatoes for supper, and work on some more stars. I wonder if I can get all ten done today?

Saturday 10 January 2015

It's a Lazy Saturday.....

I was up early today for a Doctor's appointment, and then Scott and I went to the downtown market for a little bit of shopping. We picked up some meats and vegetables.... from local growers, rather than the large grocery chains. I like the idea of supporting the farms and growers in our area. But the early morning has meant an afternoon slump. I did get some of my blues done for the Scrap Happy colour challenge. I have more blues ready to do more of the nine patches, and more triangle and hexagon shapes ready for hand sewing. The nine patches are getting done as leader/enders while I'm sewing the 32 rows left on my plus sign quilt. It's not quite half done yet. There are more rows than nine patches, so I'll have to pull out some other leader/ender to finish it off.
I'm linking up to Scrap Happy Saturday, and I think I'll spend some time there looking around. Then it just might be a knitting while watching season 3 of Call the Midwife on netflix afternoon.

Friday 9 January 2015

On my Needles, Jan. 9, 2015

I'm still slowly working away at the cowl pattern from the magazine Love of Knitting. It's called Cinched rib Cowl, designed by Phyll Lagerman, and can be found on Ravelry here. It's a fun and easy knit, and will probably be given to our daughter once it is done. I think I'm at the 2/3 rd done point on it. I've found several sweaters that I'm itching to do, but I'm holding  off until I get this done. I also had some sock yarn come in the mail the other day, which I'm also wanting to get started on, although maybe not for socks. I bought 2 balls of each, so that, if I do decide to make socks, I can get the stripes to match. But they also might get made up into shawls or something like that. There isn't much else happening here. It's too cold and snowy to head outside for anything. I missed the guild meeting last night, and a workshop today. The sleep issues part of my fibromyalgia are acting up really badly right now so, even if the weather had been a bit better, I probably wouldn't have made it out to the morning start of the workshop. I'm seeing the doctor tomorrow to see if there is anything that can be changed or increased in medications for it. It impacts on so much that I enjoy doing. Since it isn't a good idea to handle sharp cutting tools, or fast moving sharp pointy things while in the fog state of not enough sleep, there hasn't been a lot of quilting or sewing going on here, either. Anyway..... enough about that.....
I'm going to link up to Judy's On the Needles, and then see if I can't come to some sort of accommodation with sharp moving things, and get some sewing done.

Monday 5 January 2015

Design Wall Monday, Jan. 5, 2015

I've got the same thing on my wall, yet again, the Plus Sign quilt. But this might be the last week for it. It's used up a whole pile of 2 1/2 inch squares that were sorted into sets of 5 and sets of 4. It's 28 squares across by 33 long, and if my math is correct, that's 924 squares! At this point, all of it is sewn together except the 7 right hand rows. I'm not sure, as yet, if it needs borders. Any opinions??? Do you think it needs borders, and, if so, what kind?
This is going to be a short post today. The guild meeting is Thursday, and I have 7 blocks left to make for this month's row, and it needs to be done by then so the members can see what this month's row looks like. In the meantime, I'm linking up to Judy's Design Wall Monday and also to a new to me link called Scraps Monday.

Sunday 4 January 2015

Stash and Stitching Report, week 1 2015

I am hoping this year, to have a hand stitching report every week on Sundays, combined in with the stash report. I have several large hand stitching projects on tap for the coming years..... notice the plural on years..... and the only way to get them done will be slow and steady hand stitching. However.... why is there always an however?.... today's hand stitching is to sew down the binding on a bag I've made myself. I have been wanting a new small bag that acts as a self contained wallet for a long time. I bought a pattern for one several months ago, and found it not to be what I wanted, so I scrapped that project, and started this on Friday. I kinda made it up out of my head, taking the good parts of various bags, and adapting it to what I wanted. It measures about 9 inches wide by 6 inches tall. It has space inside for a card holder, and a change and bill holder. It was a challenge, and there are a few things I'd do differently the next time, but overall, I like it. There are two outside pockets, which gap when anything is put into them. so I bought a couple of blingy button to hold them closed. I'll probably not actually get to the hand sewing until later this evening, during the first episode of the season of Downton Abbey.
In the meantime, because of this little project, and because of sewing up another section of the plus sign quilt, I do have stash out numbers.

Used this week:                                   2 yards
Used this year:                                     2 yards
Added this week:                                   0
Added this year:                                    0
Balance:                                                2 yards busted

I'm going to link this up to Judy's Fabric Report and Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching, and then I have to get some work done on this month's row for the Canadiana Row Quilt that the guild is doing. I'm doing the instructions, and somehow I thought I had another week before the guild meeting, but no..... it's this coming Thursday.....eek! I should have had it written up and out to the testers ages ago. So that's my priority job for the day.

Saturday 3 January 2015

RSC.... week 1.....

The first Saturday of the year, and the first linkup for our Rainbow Scrappy projects for the year. What I have here may not look like much, but those 3/4 inch hexies and 60 degree stars took a long time to prepare. I started out thread basting them....... took too long and too fiddly, so I've gone back to glue basting again. I find I don't mind the little tags on the stars hanging out. One of the tags will be hidden in the centre of the star, and the other one at the point I'll tuck in as I stitch. The centres lay flatter without the points tucked in. These are for the Giant Monstrosity Quilt that Charlene and I are doing. I figure the easiest way to work on this is small bits at a time. There are 81 stars and hexies in the centre section of the quilt. If I do the full 11 months of the rainbow challenge in hexies and stars, I'll need 7 or 8 of each colour, so I still need to do up one or two more blues. I'll be doing the centre of the hexies in the complementary colour to the one that's chosen for the month. So these will be getting yellow in the centres.

 And then I have my stack of 12 different blues on my sewing machine, waiting to be sewn up into little nine patches. I have all of the white cut for these that I need. The quilt needs 125 nine patches. So, again assuming that I do these over the full 11 months of the challenge, I need 11 or 12 of each colour. And actually, I'm ahead on this one, because I have some yellows already sewn up from last year. Hopefully, come next Saturday. It will look better than a couple of piles. I'm linking up to Scrap happy Saturday

Thursday 1 January 2015

New Year's Bucket list for 2015

Yesterday I did a post all about what I managed to get accomplished in 2014. Today is the fun part, making plans for this coming year. I've up-dated a couple of the lists on my right hand side bar. The UFO list has been modified to show WIPs as well. The list is much shorter this year than last, which is a good thing. Of course there could be a project, or two, or three. that I've forgotten about, that I'll add as I come across them. But the really fun part is thinking about all the wonderful projects and  things I want to do in the coming year, including starting new things. I'm still working on the plus sign quilt, which should be done very shortly. That will use up a large number of 2 1/2 inch squares that I had sorted into sets of five. I also want to do a puzzle quilt, that uses sets of nine 2 1/2 inch squares, currently sitting in a bag in a drawer of my sewing desk.
I have been wanting to do a Lady of the Lake quilt, using reds and yellows and greys. This might be the year. And there are at least two quilts by Judy Martin that I'm itching to do, which will go towards using up some jelly roles I have.
There are two long term hand projects that are in the works, both of which are going to be done with a buddy..... Charlene. It seems that I inadvertently infected her with the desire to do a couple of English Paper piecing quilts. As I came across fun things in my blog surfing, that I thought she would enjoy seeing, I'd email the links to her. This passing of emails caused the infection, and since I caused it, I have to do them with her. Actually, I think I've told this story already..... anyway..... there are two EPP projects in my list for this year, and I don't think doing them is going to be much of a hardship...... I hope. One of them, at least,  will go to reducing scraps.

And then there are the quilts I've been playing with in EQ7, all of them scrappy, using different sizes, parts of which can be used as leaders/enders. This first one uses 2 inch squares, and I think the colours around each of the sets of five squares will be a different coloured solid or read as solid fabric of some sort. The majority of this is grey, simply because I was to lazy to click on each of the individual grey areas to re-colour them. I've actually started doing up the sets of five squares as my current leader/ender project.

This next one will be scrappy. It's a free pattern found here. I have a drawer full of trimmings from quilt backings that are 6 1/2 inch strips. Each of the triangles in this quilt are 6 inch finished, so it would go pretty quickly.

This next one would use up 2 1/2 inch squares and 4 1/2 inch strips for the triangles. I have eight yards of a Kona light yellow solid that would be
perfect for the backgrounds in this quilt. I could do the four patches as leader/ender. I love the faux curved lines on this one.

And then I have one more planned out, that would use up more 2 1/2 inch strips and 4 1/2 inch strips, of children's prints, this time, since I seem to have an over abundance of those. I had so much fun doing the Blooming Nine Patch, that I thought it would be fun to try the same effect on this quilt, but with triangles instead of squares. The blocks in this one are four inches finished.

And that's it, so far, for all the fun things I want to do in the coming year. And, I'm not sure that it's a best of all thing, but all four of those quilts can be done from stash and scraps I already have on hand, as can the two Judy Martin ones I want to do. Will I be able to resist buying fabric....... not likely, but I can get started on lots of fun stuff right away, without having to buy anything.
I'm going to enjoy this..........