Comfortable Doggie Tooshies

My friend Kris has two wonderful, well trained  Sheltie dogs.  They (and she) work with the local library in a program called “Read To Rover”.  She and her daughter take the dogs to the local library and various kids come in a read to the dog….how cute is that!!!!

Kris likes to put a quilt down for everyone to sit on while they read.    The problem arose that the only quilt she had was one with a lot of texture to it and the dogs couldn’t sit comfortably on it for a long period of time.  One in particular would continue to shake his leg and move around throughout the reading time.

The solution…..a new quilt designed just for this purpose…..

_C241139 I enjoyed picking the doggie fabrics and then combining them into a fun quilt. 

I used miscellaneous left-overs and other fabrics for the back…..

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The quilting is very utilitarian…..just enough to hold the layers together properly.

I am excited that this quilt can be a part of this great program….may it make for hundreds of hours of introducing kids to the fun of book reading and, of course,  comfortable doggie tooshies!!!!

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As Blue Goes By

 

Yesterday, I finished the piece for my local guild “Blue” challenge.  As I mentioned previously, it is based on a picture on the wall in one of my favorite Brit-Coms.  The show is called “As Time Goes By”.   After I had the idea for this piece, the picture was the ONLY thing that I could see in the show, so I named it “As Blue Goes By”.

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It has a bit of everything on it……collage background, fabric painting,  thread embellishments and fusible applique. 

The funny thing is that I have finished the piece a full month before it is due….normally I am working at the very last minute on challenges!!!  I guess that’s what happens when you get inspired.

Bye for now!!!

Terra Cotta Flowers

TC Flowers - Final

I have finished the second of the rust-dyed pieces.  My plan was to take it to our guild meeting this evening, but am fighting a cold so it will have to wait until another time.

I am giving this to my friend Anita and she will display it at the Pensacola Quilt Show in a couple of weeks.  Hopefully it will help to advertise the rust dyes that she will be selling in her vendor booth…..and it might even sell too…who knows.

Tomorrow I am off to the North Georgia Mountains to teach a one day Machine Quilting Class at the Misty Mountain Quilter’s Guild retreat.  I taught last year as well and am truly looking forward to seeing all of the wonderful quilters again.

Hope you are having a great quilting week!!!!!

Keeping Amber Warm

This year it was a rush to finish a queen size quilt to be given to my Son’s girlfriend….Amber.  It was VERY exciting that they announced their engagement  just a few hours before she opened the gift!!!!

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Here she is opening the bag…..can you see her behind all of the paper???

 

 

 

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Her first words were….”OHH it’s teal!!”

 

 

 

 

Here is the finished quilt……

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I had intended to do a lot of fancy quilting on this, but ran out of time and ended up just quilting it with lots of straight lines (using the walking foot).    In the end, I kind of like this simplicity!!

If you remember several months ago, I posted about the backing to this quilt.  I originally tried using 10 inch squares of miscellaneous fabrics, but it really looked BAD!!!  So, I decided to dig thru scraps and other fabrics and re-make the back.  One of my friends saw this side first and thought that it was the actual quilt…..it is kind of fun!!!

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The binding used scrap strips that I had cut earlier this year, so I managed to make the entire quilt WITHOUT having to buy any fabrics!!!!!

It was fun to think about Amber while I was making this quilt and I am thrilled that she was excited to receive it!!

Bali-Pop, Bali-Pop, Oh-lali Bali-Pop!!!

 

Today I was able to finish up the second of projects for the week…..this time a lap quilt for a wedding present.  As I mentioned when I showed the beginning of this quilt, it was made from two sets of Bali-Pops. 

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It is a very simple design using the 2-1/2 inch strips found in the Bali pops.  Although I was really excited about these batiks when I purchased them, I found that making a quilt completely of batiks is kind of boring.   Having said that, I am pleased with the final results and hope that it will be a blessing to this young couple.

Today I worked on the third of my projects, but it wont be finished for a couple of weeks.  I found out this morning that I am going to have to make a trip to Texas to attend a funeral so will be out of the quilting loop for most of next week.   Right now I am desperately trying to think of something to take to work on….at times like this I wish that I did more handwork!!!!

 

Now onto the decoration of the day…….

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When I was six years old, I began taking piano lessons from the High School girl who lived next door to me.  
I was the first student that she had ever taught and Susan proved to be  a wonderful teacher.  She gave this  little book as a Christmas present the first year that I was with her.    It is called “Miss Flora McFlimsey’s Christmas Eve” and was one of Susan’s favorite Christmas books.  I have enjoyed it over the years and, as with many of these decorations, I think of her when I set it out.

Friendship Tree

 

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In 2007, I had the opportunity to attend the International Quilt Festival in Houston.  One of the purchases that I made was the book, “Hand Applique By Machine”, written by Beth Ferrier. 

Unfortunately, I hadn’t had time to spend learning the technique, so I decided that this was the week to do it!! 

 

So, I found a simple project and started to learn.   Beth teaches a method to use freezer paper patterns and  then use a water soluble glue stick to turn the fabric edges over the paper.  You sew the pieces to the background using a tiny, tiny blanket stitch and monofilament thread. 

I had always wondered about using a glue stick because I couldn’t figure out how you would remove the paper.  BUT, Beth has the easy solution……you simply place a wet rag over the back of the piece and let the glue soften slightly.  You can then cut out the back fabric and remove the paper. 

I am glad to have learned this technique and hopefully I can use it in my next quilt.   Here is the finished piece……

 

_A022788 (2) And…..JUST A REMINDER…..you still have two days to join in the giveaway…..Go to the 101st post and leave a comment.

A VERY different quilt

This week I finished up a small project that had been in my mind for a few weeks, and one which is a very different style for me.

Back in August, my friend Deb H. and I spent a day doing glue resist dyeing. Here is the original post. One of the pieces that I created was a simple vase of flowers and I knew almost immediately what I wanted to do with it.

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The first step was to add some embroidery to the background. I used examples from a fairly recent article in Quilting Arts Magazine. The only difference was that the examples there used nice quality variegated threads and all I had were some cheap ones that I had bought some time back. But, I persevered and came up with a fairly nice background.

I felt that the vase and flowers needed to be highlighted too, so I trapuntoed them with 2 extra layers of batting.

I am NOT a paisley person, but this old fabric from my stash called to me and so I succumbed and used it as the final border.

The quilting was fairly straight forward, and I was happy to complete the quilt so quickly.

I took it to my local charity bee and, while showing them the finished product, realized that I didn’t like it because several of the threads were too light in color and the detracted from the background. So, while we were looking at another member’s quilt where she had painted many of the designs, I thought about using fabric pens and coloring over the “too bright” threads.

Voila …..I like it MUCH better now.

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Escada Azul

 

Wow, I just had a very fun 3 day weekend….it is sad to see it past!!!   On Friday, I mailed my Sunflower quilt to the East Cobb Quilt Guild show in Atlanta,  where it will be judged next Monday and then hung the following Thursday.  I am looking forward to seeing it hanging in this wonderful show.

On Saturday, Sunday and Monday, I worked on several different projects and truly enjoyed spending long hours in my studio.

The prize of the weekend was finishing the blue stair quilt that I showed a couple of posts back.  It is now named “Escada Azul” (Blue Stairs)……

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Here is the photo that the quilt was based on……

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As with most of my pieces, I learned a lot about myself!!  I ended up doing a lot of applique to set the piece together and found that I enjoyed the hand work.  I also had one piece that didn’t l0ok right but I had decided that it was “good enough”.  I thought about it during the night and went in first thing Monday morning and ripped the piece out and re-did it, being much happier with the result.

I also quilted a wallhanging for a friend who is in a time crunch trying to get her booth ready for the upcoming Atlanta show.    I still find it nerve racking to quilt for another quilter….someone who KNOWS what it is supposed to look like!!!

Oh well, so much for the Holiday….now it is on to Accounting work!!!

Success is SWEET!!!

Click on the photo for a larger picture that shows the quilting better.

I am so excited to report that the blue lines all came out and that the quilt is now finished!!!!

After the first soaking in water, the lines were still showing in the outer border. This was because I didn’t just follow the lines when quilting that part, but did a “Greek Key” design using the lines as a placement guide, so many of the actual lines were not quilted on.

SO, I used an ENTIRE bottle of “Shout” and heavily sprayed the outside border and let it sit for about 2 hours. I then filled the bath up with water again, adding Oxi-Clean and clothes soap. The quilt soaked in this solution for about 18 hours.

Then yesterday, I put the quilt in the washer and rinsed it a few times and then dried it in a HOT dryer.

I am so pleased with how it turned out and also with the quilting. I will NEVER be afraid to quilt a big quilt on my sewing machine again!!!

Thanks for reading and for the well wishes that the lines would disappear.

Casa Amarela

A few weeks ago I ranted about a project that I was scared to start because I didn’t know if I was capable of finishing it.

It was a quilt based on this photo that was taken when I was in Porto, Portugal back in May……


I knew that I wanted to replicate the stairs and houses, but was frightened to start it!!!!!

I started out by printing the photo in an 8×10 format, using Black and White printing, on regular computer paper. I then used a ruler and fine point Sharpie to draw the major lines on the drawing. If the Sharpie is fairly new, the ink will soak thru the paper so that you can see it easily from the back side. I re-traced those lines on the back, giving me a reverse pattern.

I then printed out the reversed version of the line drawing using the poster function which allows the one page to be printed out onto 4 pages….2 across and 2 down. Finally, I printed the photo itself out onto four pages as well….of course I ran out of toner mid photo!!!

I began working with the fabrics by dividing the picture into straight-line sections and tracing them onto Golden Threads paper. I paper pieced each section and then sewed them all together. A couple of the seams were hand sewn to help me get the parts lined up properly.


At this point, I decided that I wasn’t happy with the piece, but couldn’t figure out what was wrong with it. So, I took it to my Charity Bee the next week and asked for their suggestions.


They immediately said……add the details from the photo and add some shading to the stairs!!! Simple little changes, but they definitely did the trick!!!!

I was nervous about using gray markers on the piece to shade it, but once I finally got my courage up, it made a HUGE difference. I ended up adding shading to almost every part of the picture.

The quilting was fun, although I had to take several lines out and re-do them because they didn’t match with the perspective of the quilt.

Here is the final version, named “Casa Amarela”, which stands for “Yellow House” in Portuguese.