Monday, March 9, 2015

Faux chenille potholders to baby quilt (um rug)

Have you made faux chenille? Well I love texture and saw these little potholders at a local LQS and decided to give them a try.  They are great in the kitchen, look good, work hard and launder up wonderfully.  My hubby has big hands and he loves that I made them oversized, perfect for him.  I like the extra protection they give me. 

The rounded one on the bottom is my favorite because I finally got the binding on to my satisfaction.  These were fun and fairly easy to make.  I  have several more cut and ready to sew for those "quick fix" times I just need to sit at the machine.  This lady gives a good tutorial:
Now, from this success I decided to try the baby quilt, and this is what came of that bright idea:

Isn't that little animal print cute?  This blanket is very cuddly, soft and heavy !  Boy oh boy did I struggle with this blanket. At the end of it all I serged around the edges rather than apply a binding because I made several mistakes and just wanted to finish it off.  I don't know why I thought I needed to add a layer of batting (possibly because that's what I did for the potholders) - big mistake - it really made this blanket a bear to wrestle through the sewing machine.  I used a Warm and Natural batting (100% cotton) which is a heavy/dense batting anyway.  The batting and five layers of flannel were waaaay tooo much.  I was afraid it was going to turn out hard and stiff, like a rug, but after a couple of rounds through the washer and dryer it softened up considerably.  I may try another one without the batting.  (as soon as my shoulder heals and my left arm stops hurting - haha) At least it will make a good utility blankie for baby, something to toss on the floor for playtime.  Now that I write this up I am thinking it really would make a good little rug for the bathroom and it wouldn't need to be this large.  I have small bathrooms. 
 Adios, Bernie

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Never stop learning

Just attended quilt guild meeting on Monday - there was a used book sale and I picked up a few new (to me) books

Both books by Harriet Hargrave who is just a phenomenal woman, quilter and teacher.  About 10 years ago I was lucky enough to take a class from her on invisible machine applique through a quilt guild I belonged to and it was an amazing day of learning.  She is an excellent teacher.  But - I never followed up with what I learned because I thought I just didn't have the talent to do it (or the patience). :)   I am into the machine applique book to about page 23.  I love the look of applique on quilts, so am determined that this year I am going to start learning to applique and make some beautiful pillows at the very least.  Also have these on my design wall.
Which I want to turn into something like this
These are vintage hankies embroidered to blocks made into a quilt.  I have a collection of vintage hankies and would like to do this, but don't think I am up to all the hand embroidery.
Harriet Hargrave was a pioneer in regard to quilting on a home sewing machine, I will read the Heirloom Machine Quilting book and hopefully I can improve my erratic "scribble" free motion quilting.  Lots of room for improvement there.  It took forever for me to learn how to control the quilt, the speed of the machine and my hands to move the quilt sandwich with some control, and even though I am comfortable now doing something say up to the size of a lap quilt free motion, I would like to learn how to do more intricate designs and plan the quilting. 
It is snowing again today and so cold this morning - the weekend should see some sunshine and warmer temps - maybe we will be able to get outside for a bit and enjoy it.   Adios. Bernie 

Friday, February 27, 2015

On Quilt Guilds

Last pics of finished baby quilt; I washed it and had two yo-yo's fall apart on it, so re-stitched  them and decided to hand stitch all around every yo-yo's for a secure hold.  Quilted with 80 /20 cotton batting (the last of a roll I had for several years) on my Juki, just freemotion scribble.

This past weekend I worked on a sample of the Delectable Mountain block (Bonnie Hunter) at  She is just the best, I try to read her blog at least once a week.  She shares a whole lotta patterns for free and is just fun to read and follow. 
Every month the quilt guild I belong to has a member do a tutorial on "block of the month".  My turn is this month.  Members can (if they wish) make a few samples of that block for the next month and they are all put together for a drawing, each block you make equals one ticket for the drawing.  If you win, you get all the blocks.  The block can also be done up in red, white and blue and donated to our wounded warrior quilt efforts.  I enjoy the quilt guild.  Visiting with friends, beautiful eye candy when it is show and tell, it is a relaxing evening for me.  So this is my demo for the quilt block:

Hopefully, if you click on the pic, you can see it enlarged, it is a fairly easy block with various setting options.  It has been snowing all day and the weatherwoman predicts it will continue to snow all weekend.  I am going to try to just stay and home and sew, my own little weekend retreat.  Adios. Bernie.

Monday, February 2, 2015

Baby girl quilt - yo yo - applique & Superbowl

Well, well, well, that was quite a game yesterday.  I don't even follow football or pretend to understand more than that each team tries to get to the opposite end of the field and score points, but thought it was an exciting game to watch anyway.  I got pulled in because my husband was watching, usually that football time finds me in my sewing room.  Congrats to the winning team and fans.  Both teams played hard.  
I have a flimsy to show.  It is intended for a cousin's daughter who is expecting her first baby in April Z(I think).  I was told it is a girl, so I went for pinks and purples because the momma to be is favoring lavender for the baby's room.  It will have a lavender flannel backing.

The fabrics are an assortment of the 1930's reproductions and then I fused some freeform flowers, hand embroidered the edges and added yo-yo's to them (the yo-yos are attached with the sewing machine zig-zag stitch through the centers and tacked on some of the edges.   I used SoftFuse for the flowers.  The winding stem is a bias tube I stitched on by machine.  It was difficult to hand embroider the edges through the fabric layers and the fusible.  The edges of flowers and leaves are embroidered with perle cotton #8 and #12.  I won't put a border on this and am not sure if I will try to machine quilt around it or use the birthing method and tie it.  It came out okay - I would like to try the flowers and vine again as a border, but don't think I will use the Soft Fuse, I will try the freezer paper turn under method.  I saw a similar wall hanging of the flowers on Pinterest and lots of pics of these "strip" type baby quilts, so I just put the two together.  That's it for this week !
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