Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Tired Tuesday

Well, a few things to be thankful for:

  1. I got a government bursary for my schooling.
  2. I will be moving in with my boyfriend in less than a day
  3. The final Harry Potter movie is coming out soon!
I have been a busy little bee lately fighting to finish the quilt for Pat before I leave.  I am not quite done, but pretty much there.  I had to stop for the night because it was late and my machine is fairly loud.

I started off the quilt by quilting a seam with the walking foot along each side of each seam with a 1/4" allowance on each side.  Here's a look from the back.

After I did that for the whole quilt, I flipped it sideways and did the same thing the other way.  Thankfully it was a lot easier to do that once I'd done the one direction.  I have a feeling it will take me a lot of practice to get the hang of this, it was tough with such a big quilt.

The thread I used is variegated brown/cream/gold.  How perfect could it get??  Anyways, I made my binding and then sewed it onto the front.  I only have to finish that up and the quilt will be done.  SO close!

The binding is a red (quite clearly) with a small star/flower type fabric.  I thought that a high contrast binding would add a little interest to my fairly monochromatic quilt.  Tomorrow I'll post a picture of it all finished up!

Sunday, 26 June 2011

A Little Lulu

I was in Saskatoon for a ball tournament this weekend.  We went through the round robin and then got rained out.  Insanely rained out.  So, we did what any great ball team would do in Saskatoon, we hit up Lululemon!  I didn't go too crazy because I'm a student.  But I went a bit crazier than a girl on a student loan should.  I justify it with the fact that I haven't bought anything there for 5 years.  So now it'll be another 5 years.

Hard to tell, but it's a mint green colour

I got that bag, a sweet pair of pants, and a top.  So anyone who has been there knows that's a lot.  I don't have anything about quilting today, but I was so tired from our extremely early mornings for ball that I just couldn't bring myself to do it when I got home.  Just parked myself in front of the TV.  Tomorrow I will hopefully be getting on it.

Friday, 24 June 2011

The last class

It's a bit hard to believe, but I actually just wrote my last exam for my degree!  Thank goodness for that too, because I'm definitely starting to burn out a bit.  I think that is as much related to length of school as it is to lack of sleep.  Oh well!

Today after my exam I came back home and got to work on my quilt for Pat.  I'd like to get it dealt with before I've moved, otherwise it could take months to remember to bring it.  Anyways, I started off with sewing my little heart out to put together the rows.

And then, I managed to find a patch of floor that was big enough to hold the quilt and got rid of all the dog fur (we have an excessive shedder here) and basted it all together.  I like the effect of the pattern, it draws the eye!

I used a plain brown sheet for the back, and Hobbs 80/20 Cotton/Poly batting.  I have to admit, I prefer 100% cotton, it's just a nicer feel.  Not like you can feel the batting though.  Anyways, I've started quilting it...this could take a while.

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Small and Big

Today I took a little break from my big project, the 9-patch quilt, and made a quick little project as a birthday/graduation gift for my sister.  I'm pretty excited about it, because I just sorta winged it.  It is a quilted case for her kindle. The kindle measures 7.5" x 4.8" or so.  I used a scrap of batting left over from my baby quilt from before, as well as a grey-on-grey print I bought for curtains and a red that I have been using here and there (bought from a lady who was selling out her home sewing business).

I'll try and explain what I did.  That way, even if no one else ever uses it, I can come back and make another (I also have a kindle)!

I started off by making a quilt sandwich of the batting and each colour of fabric.  I used rectangles measuring approximately 9" x 17".  I lined them up evenly, and basted it with safety pins.  I would have liked to stipple it, but I don't have a free motion quilting foot, so I used the walking foot to quilt it.  I simply did vertical lines using the foot width as a guide, and mine is a bit more than 1/4".

Edited to add: this is too wide.  I think that if you just measured the width of the kindle, add 1" and you'll be good.

Once I finished the quilting, I made 1" binding and sewed that along the two narrow ends.  Then I folded the whole thing in half, right sides together, the long way.  I used a small zig-zag stitch and sewed up the sides, sewing the corners a bit.  I trimmed off all the excess that I safely could.

Once I flipped it inside out I added a cute button and a loop (to the back, inside) in the same colour as the binding to hold it shut.  Nothing too fancy!  I am sure there is a better way to do this, but I'm quite pleased with it. 

I'd intended to do a fold-over flap at the top, but I
forgot to make it long enough, and decided this
would work just fine!
I washed it once I was finished because I left enough room to shrink and still fit the kindle.  I may take a picture with a kindle in it to get the idea of whether it is a good size.  The final size is pretty much 8" x 6".  Now that it's finished I see that I needed to take more pictures along the way.  If I make another I will!

After I finished the kindle case, I finished pressing my 9-patch squares.  There they are, all 48 of them, and tomorrow I will start sewing my rows together.  We'll see how far I get!

Monday, 20 June 2011

Nine Squareness

I spent the weekend away from my crafting ways playing ball in Winnipeg.  It was great and I got to hang out with my mom and sister, something that doesn't happen very often.

Today it was back to class.  It's too bad for the teacher because she has to teach us when all we can do is thing about the fact that we're months away from completion, and that this is our last time spent in a class!

After that I came home and got back to work on my quilt.  I continued to press seams open on the two joined columns, and then joined the third; my nine-patch blocks are complete!  Now I just need to get back to pressing the seams open again and then I will connect them all.

I threw 9 squares together to give the general effect.

I wish I'd picked a different fabric for my lightest one, but I think once the whole thing gets put together I will like it more.  I am glad that I went with a pattern to my idea, it isn't fancy but I decided with only three colours I was better off making it structured.  Someday I will get adventurous and make a scrappy quilt.

The final quilt is going to be huge, I'm feeling a bit
intimidated.  I will just have to do my best!

Wednesday, 15 June 2011


I guess we should have seen it coming, but I think that people have gone way further than anyone thought in Vancouver.  Destruction, looting and fires.  The most bizarre part of it all is the thousands of people standing around taking videos and pictures, and just watching.  Cars on fire, people fighting.  Thank goodness the Boston players were able to get out safely.

I love the Canucks, I was born in BC and I have been a fan since I knew what hockey was.  I was young, but I remember watching them go for the cup in '94 (my favourite player was Pavel Bure, the Russian Rocket!).

What I'm seeing tonight isn't even about the game anymore, it's some people who are out to cause a lot of trouble and then the mob mentality taking over.  I'm sure we'll hear about it for a while.

On to quilting though, today I kept going on my nine-patch from this tutorial.  I have all of the rows sewn up, and I've got two of them sewn together.  I quit with the sewing and switched to pressing my seams partly to change things up and partly because it was late and my machine is loud.

I'll just leave it for the weekend and get back to it on Monday.  Interested to see how it works out, I have grown un-fond of the lightest colour, but hopefully it will all pull together well!

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Change of direction

Today, my original plan was to get cutting up the fandango to make my quilt.  However, I decided to go a different direction.  I'm using brown, gold, and tan fabric that I purchased when I first got the idea I'd like to quilt.  I found an instructable for a crazy 9-patch, and chose to do it with three fabrics in order to save myself money and yardage guessing.

We'll see how it turns out.  I'm going to give it to my future father-in-law as a thank-you.  He's been letting me live in his basement while I am going to school, which has truly been invaluable to me.  Hopefully he likes it!

I have discovered, I love chain piecing

Here's my lovely set-up.  Those little scissors were actually
a gift included with my order from 1 Choice 4 Quilting.
After I finished about 2/3 of it all it got too late to sew (it's a loud enough machine that I think it may bother Pat if he were trying to sleep) so I pressed the seams open on half of the strips of three that I have made.  Once I finish it all I'll start piecing them into the 9-Patch blocks.

I decided to work on this because I'd like to finish it before I move away.  Otherwise, I fear it could be a while before it makes it back.  I bought a queen size brown flat sheet to serve as backing, and I'm trying to decide if I want to add some piecing.  Decisions, decisions.

Monday, 13 June 2011

My first.

Thank goodness game 7 is in Vancouver, at least they have a chance there!  Anyways, that game was almost too sad to talk about.
The good news, I have officially finished my first quilt ever!  I'm so glad I decided to do this one first instead of the other one I'm working on.  I've made it a tri-color instead of scrappy because of my lack of a stash.  I think something that big would have been a bit overwhelming to start off with.
So, without further ado, here it is!

I washed it so it's all nice and crinkly
Pieced together backing from leftovers

I love the look of striped binding, so I gave it a shot
I didn't do any hand-stitching for the binding, I did it strictly by machine, and I think it looks great!  there are definitely a few oopsies here and there, but all together I am please with the results.  The final dimensions of the quilt are 27" x 35".  I had been aiming a bit bigger but with shrinking and some miscalculations on my part, let's just say it was a great learning experience and I admit I'm quite proud!

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Oh my achin' arms

Not sure why, maybe it was ball practice today, but everything from my shoulders to elbows is aching.  Anyways, today I had a great day as far as quilting goes.  I sewed all my strips together from the quilt, added strips of white to the side because it was a bit too narrow, and then adding batting, a pieced backing, and basted it. Yay!

I will show pre-sandwich pictures because that's all that I took!

There's a few minor glitches, but all in all I'd say a pretty good job for my first kick at the can.

Lucky for me there is some batting left over so I can practice a bit of machine quilting, as well as how to use the good old walking foot.  I'm just going to do straight[ish] lines for my first attempt.

I'm looking forward to seeing what this is like when it's all done and washed up.

Friday, 10 June 2011

Hope is restored!

Funny how when Vancouver wins it's just as close of a game as can be!  Oh well...ONE MORE GAME!  Today was a busy day for me.  I had a midterm in the morning, and then finished piecing the rows for my baby quilt.  I will take pics when I get the whole quilt top pieced.  Once thing that I did finish though was covers for our rocking chair glider.

Here's what the chair cushions looked like before

Here is the new look. It's a shiny fabric, so it's very difficult to get a picture of.  However, I did what I could!  I got the measurements from the old covers and went from there.

Closer up you can see it's a tone-on-tone gold stripe.  I actually did an okay job, but I learned that you still need to sew right sides together with a zipper.  Don't ask.

Here are some lovely tulips from our garden!  They're pretty close to being done for so I figured that we could enjoy them inside for a bit!

Not too shabby!

Thursday, 9 June 2011

I love mail

So today I got both of my orders from 1 Choice 4 Quilting and I am so excited.  I sort of have a stash now, mind you it's not terribly varied.  Shawna is wonderful, she sent some lovely goodies and notions along, and even had a hand-written card in there, I'll definitely be going back.  When I'm not a student that is!

Here is a Lil' Rascals charm pack and a white moda jelly roll for sashing.

This is the Pure line of fabric, these are fat quarters.

Just a close up, to show the writing--I love the detail of this stuff!

My faves by far, a half-yard bunch of Fandango
(I took out the duplicates)

I can't remember the name of this collection,
but it's going to be a baby quilt!

Here is a fat quarter bundle of some lovely batiks
So far, I'm not totally sure about everything, but I think that I am going to make a future's so bright quilt designed by amanda jean with the fandango line, and I think the pure will go towards a new bag.  I love mine, but I want to make something a bit different.  Because who says you need to stop at one??

Well, I have loved opening up these packages, and dreaming up plans for them.  It's actually harder than I thought.  Hopefully when I get a few quilts under my belt I will be able to (a) come up with my 'own' designs/measurements and (b) use fabrics that *gasp* don't come in the same line.

Tomorrow if I remember I will put up pictures of the wonderful 'welcome to quilting' package that my aunt sent.  So excited!

Wednesday, 8 June 2011

A busy day

Well, the hockey game wasn't much to watch, so I got a good little chunk of work done.  Meet my second officially finished project!

It's not perfect, at all, but it's only my first attempt.  I made it from this pattern from wee wonderfuls.  I decided to make this as a gift for my friend instead of the quilt--I see that someone else already made one for the baby.  In order to make the wee bunny I bought a fat quarter bundle of polka-dot flannel from, of all places, Walmart.

Aren't those babies cute!  I wanted to use all flannel, and lacking a solid flannel I just used the blue inside out for the front, and then right side blue for the back and bottom.  I think next time it would be worth spending the money to get the neutral flannel.  Maybe I can find a pillow case?

I also got started on sewing together the quilt top for the zig-zag baby quilt that I'm working on.  More on that another day!

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

The Kenmore 158 is back!

I'm so excited, I called the sewing shop today and my machine is repaired and usable!!  This is great news because not only do I not have to buy a new (used) machine, but this one is a solid piece of work!  Although I was sewing a plastic bag holder and bent the needle.  Me, being a dummy, kept right on sewing, and so now I have a little patch of dentedness on my plate.  Oh well, once I got a new needle (finally) in there it sewed like a charm.   Thirty years of being fine and it takes me an hour to chew through metal.  Oops!

Here is where I was working today.

The cabinet is made to hold the machine so it tucks away nicely and I can get it out of the way.  Unfortunately, the machine weighs about 35 lbs, so she's a little awkward to lug around.  So pleased though.  And I figured out why I couldn't get the Singer to work and why instruction manuals for threading a machine are key!

I will post a picture of the plastic bag holder once it is full of bags, and soon I'll post pictures of my progress on the zig-zag baby quilt I'm making.  Might try making a wee wonderful bunny soon, I see the baby I was making the quilt for has one already.  Well, that's it for now!

Sunday, 5 June 2011

A new week

I got a sunburn today.  I tried to get the sewing machine going again, but something is either off with the tension (which I dare not mess with) or it needs a new needle.  Whatever the answer, I don't want to mess with it.

Here is a cute picture of my [massive] puppy, because that's all that I have to share right now.  Awww.

Saturday, 4 June 2011

Game 2

Wahoo!  Canucks are 2-0.  Started sewing on the zig-zag quilt project I have going.  The only problem is that once I used up my first bobbin and moved onto the next I just couldn't get it right.  It is my mom's sewing machine that I was using while mine is getting repaired, so maybe I've missed a step.  Anyways, I got a few strips together.  Gotta start it somewhere.

Just watching 'We Are Marshall' and I think I'm in for a good cry.

Friday, 3 June 2011


Today was my final day as a school nurse in a high school.  I have to admit, I will miss it!  The good news is, that puts me that much closer to being a 'Nurse' rather than a nursing student.  Bittersweet.

Most excellently, a little package arrived in the mail for me.  Now, this is also a bit annoying.  It's a cute little charm pack I ordered online. The problem is that I failed to notice that the shipping was more that the pack itself. Ouch.

The pack has these 4 patterns, 10 each

So, now that I have learned my lessson, I will no longer be purchasing any fabric on eBay.  I have discovered that it is actually more economical to buy from online stores, and at times locally.  I'm in a small town so I don't have the benefit of a local quilting shopping, and the nearest one (along with fabricland) is an hour and a half away.

I think in the next few posts I will explore a few of my other projects--we'll see!

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Oh happy day!

Okay, so I have so say, I l-o-v-e the Vancouver Canucks.  They are my team 100%, and I'm so excited to watch the final series, boo Boston.

Anywho, I'll share about what will hopefully be my first finished project.  My friend recently had a baby, so I want to make him a baby quilt (fabric below).  I'm basing it on this zig-zag quilt pattern from crazy mom quilts blog.  If you go to the bottom of the post there is a link to her tutorial.

The picture isn't the greatest because it was dreary and rainy, but you get the idea of what I'm using.  I've decided to make it two colours (I have an extremely limited stash to work from), the green one is basically bubbles and the yellow one has an all-over alphabet.  Hopefully I will get better at taking these pictures so I don't have to describe them in such minute detail.

Also, I received these treasures in the mail today from Amazon.  So excited to tuck into them, and start using some of the patterns.  I love that front page log cabin quilt!

I must get back to my hockey game.