Friday, April 25, 2014

Big Surprise!

I opened my dashboard on my Etsy site yesterday, only to find a request for a custom order!!!!  How cool is that????

A restaurant in Kansas City contacted me to make them specialized tortilla warmers that are smaller than the ones floating around on Etsy, including mine that I have listed.  And they want 26 made!  I am totally stoked about this order because custom orders are usually for one of a kind, one time type of item, but this is a commercial order.

So, I whipped up a prototype of the specifics they were asking for, and will send it off for review.

So, there you have it, one small tortilla warmer prototype!


Thursday, April 24, 2014

What a Difference a Week Makes

This is the time of year here in the Pacific Northwest when things really start hopping as far as early gardening goes.  The first picture was taken a week ago when the lettuce/spinach bed was just beginning to come up.  And the second picture was taken yesterday.  Wow, what a difference a week makes, along with a little sun and lots of rain.

 This bed almost looks picture perfect!

We should be able to have our first picking sometime next week.  


Country Gatherings Final Blocks 10, 11, and 12

I worked in between doing a commissioned project (Jill's Quilt) and finished the last three blocks of this UFO BOM Country Gatherings. Then on Monday, we were in the big city and was able to go to a store called Fabric Depot, which has thousands upon thousands of fabric, including quilting fabric from the major manufactures. I was able to find some fabric that will work as the sashing, but I am a bit stymied about the final choice of setting the blocks and borders. The booklet that I followed for this BOM has six ways to finish the quilt, including setting the blocks on point and the others have fancy sashings using star centers, and borders that are half square triangles, and so on. But for now I can say the blocks are complete and I can work on how I want to finish the quilt itself.

Here are the blocks:

Block 10

Block 11

Block 12


Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Jill's Quilt Getting Quilted

I'm on the last leg of finishing Jill's quilt.  I started quilting it yesterday.  I had put over 500 safety pins in the sandwiched quilt, and took the time to go down the center of each strip first to stabilize it , before doing the rest of the lines, 1" apart.

I cleared off my waist high cutting table and set up my old, work horse, sewing machine to do the quilting.  The table width held the weight of the quilt off to the left of the machine, and standing to do the quilting, turned out to be a breeze.  It actually wasn't as hard on my shoulders as when I have quilted sitting down.

I am going to leave this set up in place and get some quilting done on some quilt tops that will be using just straight line quilting.


Thursday, April 17, 2014

Progress on Jill's Quilt

I am making progress on Jill's quilt. Today, i got the top, batting and the backing sandwiched and all pinned. Jill is opting for a straight line quilting done with white thread. It should go fairly quick.


Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Jill's Quilt - Top Done

Today, I finished the top for Jill's quilt.  Look at the picture she sent me to pattern her quilt after and then look at the my finished quilt top:

Today is is cloudy (like most of the time here in the Northwest), so the picture is not as bright as I would have like it to be for comparison.  But, in my mind, I nailed it!!

Now she has to decide on the type of quilting and the color of the thread she wants to use.  I sent her some pictures of stippling, shadowing, and straight-line quilting that she can choose from.  


Sunday, April 13, 2014

FQS Mystery Designer BOM Block #11

Well, the 2013 Fat Quarter Shop Designer Mystery BOM is almost over. There is only one block left after this one.

Block 11


Thursday, April 10, 2014

More on Jill's Quilt

I received the fabric in the mail today of the choices she made for her quilt.  She is pretty much following the picture that was in my post, here, which is going to be gorgeous!  

The top print in the pile is the binding, the two solids are the top, and the feather print is the backing. She did an awesome job picking out the fabrics.

I spent this evening getting the pieces cut out for the top, and sewed about a fifth of the top together.  Stayed tune for the progress of this quilt!


Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Another Two Blocks

I have been really breezing through the blocks of this UFO BOM, Country Gatherings. For one thing, I haven't picked another UFO BOM to work on at the same time, like I did when I was working on A Civil War Tribute and Land of Lincoln Sampler. I still have to put together all the blocks from the Civil War Tribute, so I didn't want to delve into another UFO BOM.

I spent some time outside yesterday  planting 120 glads, a couple of lavender plants, and some other flower seeds, in the flower bed I worked on the last couple of days.  And, again I come inside and sew in the evening.  I had the next two blocks already cut out and then was able to just sit down and make them.

Block 8

Block 9


Still Busy Outside

Yep, that's me, still busy working outside on several garden areas, one at a time.  Slowly, one at a time.  See, I am Manual, as in manual labor.  I am not allowed around machinery, so I do everything with hand tools and my back.  Such a slooooowwww process.  Anyway, here is what I have been working on last week and yesterday:

This is the before picture.  You can barely make out the edge where the grass meets the weed part of the flower bed.

Then this is the picture of all the weeds, grass, and excess dirt thrown in a trailer.

And this is the picture of the flower bed all dug up.

Now, today, I will be digging in the sprinklers back into the bed and setting them up for use when we turn them on later this Spring.  Then, I will be planting some more perennials, glad bulbs, and some other flower seeds (sunflowers and marigolds).

I also have been keeping an eye on my baby chicks.  I stopped brooding them about 4 days ago, but they are still kinda timid about venturing out into the real world (aka the chicken yard).  Below is a short video of them being silly and full of themselves.

After working so laboriously, I love that I can sit down and relax in my sewing room and do some sewing.  I got another block done for the Country Gatherings BOM that I have been working on lately.  I am breezing right through this one, and really like the bright colors.  At first I thought the fabrics were from the 30's era, I really think they are more from the 40's.  Here is block 7.

So, there you go.  Or how I go during this Spring Season!


Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Multiple Things

I have stated in the last couple of posts that I have been busy outside doing so much needed yard and garden work.  Here are a few pictures of progress so far:

This is a little yard ornament that I fill with annuals every year, that I can also see out by picture window in my sewing room all summer:

Then this is my garden area that I had to fill up with new soil this year.  I only have early plantings at the moment, such as onions, carrots, beets, cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, lettuce, spinach, peas, and a few herbs. This first picture is looking at the garden area (with the chicken house and yard in the back area) from the back patio area.

This is a close up of the boxes with the new plants or seedlings just coming up.

But I did manage to get a requested project done on my to do list, which is a cell phone case for my mother's phone.  The end result is not as perfect as I would have liked it to be, but this was made with out a pattern or instructions on how to "fit" the pieces together.  I wanted to make it like the boughten ones that have elastic on the sides that give the case a better grip.  So, I had to ponder the making of the pattern and how it would all come together, and came up with the following.  I did have a rough outline of the phone for the case, but that was all I needed in the end to get this:

Here is the front of the case:

The back view.  It has a pocket for a credit card, DL, or a stash of cash.  I also added a tab with a key ring.  I use the tab and ring on mine case to pin it to my bra, so the phone doesn't fall out when I bend over.  But, if you were carrying in a purse or pocket, you could also attache a key(s) to it for all in one case.

This is the padded sides of the case where the phone will slide in and be protected.

And finally, this is the elastic sides that will hold in the phone nice and tight.  This was the challenge of making this little case, as I really had to think how to get the elastic sewn in the seams on both front and back of the case and on each side all at once.  Turning the case was a trick, because it is so small to start with as it is for a flip phone.

It is nice to know that this old lady still has what is needed to work out a design in my head and get an end result!!


Friday, April 4, 2014

Country Gatherings Block 4, 5, 6

I got a little time to sew these last couple of days, and when I say little, I mean little.  About 15-30 minutes of an evening, is all I have been able to squeeze in this week.  I have been working outside getting some big projects done.  It is so nice to have a sewing room off the kitchen, all set up, where I can just go in, sit down, and start  to sew!  Makes getting those little snippets of time so much easier to get in, and it allows more to get done!

I jumped ahead in getting the blocks done from the Country Gatherings.  I worked on the next three blocks.

This is block 4, a little busy for my liking, but it should fit in okay when the top gets put together.

This is block 5, more simple and not so busy as #4 was.

And finally block 6.  The jury is still out on the block and the use of prints and color...


Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Jill's Quilt

I made a baby quilt about a year ago for my mom to give at a show for the daughter of a friend of theirs. So it was a surprise when the receiver of the baby quilt contacted me to ask if I could make her the quilt in this picture.

Since I don't have a pattern or quilt software to make one, I fell back on my all time favorite program to design this quilt on paper. I used iNumbers (from MAC) or in other terms, Excel. I have used this program more than once to make patterns for quilts, granny square afgans, knitting rows mark off sheet, and many other things.

This is what I came up with in pattern to match the picture. Then the second sheet is the fabric requirements.
The client is buying the fabric and sending it to me, so I am not sure what colors she will choose.

Fabric Requirements (done the old fashioned way, with pencil and paper)


Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Center Block of Civil War Tribute BOM

If you have been following me for the last couple of months (maybe longer), you know that I have been working on some of my older BOM projects.  One of them has been Civil War Tribute.  The picture below is what the finished quilt is supposed to look like.  I am showing you this picture because, I have finished the center 36" square block and I thought you might like to see how it will look in the quilt.

Ta! Da!  The center is complete.

Now, a blogger friend from Yesteryear Embroideries, (she was the first person to leave a comment when I first started blogging. She does some fantastic work, check her blog out by clicking on her blog name ) asked me if I had picked out my my border fabrics yet.  Actually, since this was a BOM program, the border fabric came in month 12.   All the fabric for this BOM was designed by Judie Rothermel for Marcus Brothers Fabric, which consisted of a 50 piece collection.

So here is the collection that will be used for the borders.  The pattern laying next to the fabric shows a picture of one corner, and if you look closely at the whole quilt top picture above, you can see the sawtooth border and the two inner borders.

Here is the backing I am going to use on this quilt.  It is a five yard piece that I picked up on sale as it was a design by Judie Rothermel, just not from this collection. I think it will work just fine, but I am a couple of yards short, so I will take the scraps leftover from the blocks and make a pieced scrappy back.

All in all, I am glad this is almost done. I wouldn't recommend it to anyone, especially a beginner quilter. The pattern was poorly written, and hard to follow, including several mistakes. Just saying, my personal opinion.