quilting, family, life…mostly quilting

It’s that time of year again.  Time to thank those folks who teach and guide my son, helping him become the man he’ll be.

My son has 7 teachers in his rotation classes.  At Christmas I made (and blogged about) coffee cozies for each of them and wrapped them around cups filled with goodies.  For the end of the year gift, with time constraints, I decided I would just buy them each a gift.

IMG_1980

I bought these organizers at the dollar store and filled them with office supplies that I figure everyone can use either at work or home.  I know it’s not a ‘crafty’ gift, but I thought I’d post about it in case anyone is needing a neat teacher gift idea.  All that is needed now is a pretty (or masculine) ribbon tied around each of them and off to school they go!

  My son rarely comes home with homework and if he does it’s usually a project that takes a few days to complete.  We all have fun scouring our home (and often my sewing room) for supplies to make things; like a wooden raft, a model of a single cell, a homemade ice box.  I am reliving my childhood through my son and I couldn’t be having a better time of it!

My son’s time management skills are being honed by an amazing woman, his tutor.  We are very fortunate to be able to afford and to have found this wonderful tutor that has helped our son achieve some of the best grades he has ever gotten.  I wanted to show my gratitude in a more personal way.  At Christmas, I made her a pillow.  She says she still uses it even though it has a winter themed fabric.

 IMG_1272

I know the colours in her home are very neutral and I wanted to make something that had a classic look.

IMG_1974

I made her a set of four reversible placemats (measuring 17″x21″)

IMG_1977

and a set of four napkins (16″ square).

IMG_1975

I am totally crushing on these!  I wish I had more of that bamboo fabric to make some for myself.  I may need to scour the stores to find some.  I have plenty of the other fabrics, or similar ones in my stash, so another set of these aren’t too far in the future.

I used medium weight interfacing between the two layers of fabric to give the placemats a bit more structure.  The napkins are double-sided as well with the reverse being my go-to neutral, Kona Snow.

 IMG_1976

I pre-washed all the fabrics to reduce shrinkage afterward.  Wow!  I need to figure out a better way of doing that!  I trimmed way too much in frayed threads.  I’m thinking maybe putting it all in a pillow case and tying it shut for the next time.

I’m hoping everyone finds these gifts useful and I’m hoping they feel my gratitude for being such great influences on my son.  I’m a believer in “it takes a village”.

Till next time…

Rita

IMG_1963

A few weeks ago, as I was enjoying a pedicure, my friend told me about a sweet little 5 month old baby girl that has been in hospital for months.  She has a non-operable, non-malignant tumour in her brain that is affecting her optic nerve among other things.  She will have an arduous journey ahead of her.  I have never met the parents or the little girl but I see her grandma most times at the spa where we both get our services done.   While listening to the story of this little girl, I felt it placed upon my heart to offer a tiny bit of comfort  the only ways I know how.  Make a quilt and say a prayer.

I let it go for a week or so thinking that it would seem strange to the family to receive a quilt from a complete stranger.  I tried to work on other projects in my sewing room but at the oddest moments, I would think of this little girl and her family.  If God wasn’t tapping on my door wanting me to make this quilt, I’m not sure what was going on.  So, I decided I better answer the call.

I rooted through my scrap bin of pink fabrics and pulled together enough baby-girl fabric to make a decent sized quilt.  Finished, it measures 50″x64″.  Other than the Kona Snow used for the sashing and border, the entire quilt is made from scraps.  Even the batting was “frankenstitched” from scraps cut from other projects.

IMG_1966

The backing was a thrift store duvet cover that I recycled and because it was previously loved, it is so soft from many washings.  I decided this would be an excellent opportunity to practice my stippling technique of FMQing.

IMG_1965

I quilted hearts in each square of fabric and double hearts along the border.  The binding was a complete surprise!  I found it in my green scrap bin and it has the perfect shade of pink in it!

IMG_1964

I’m calling this quilt “Happy Hearts” in hopes it brings a bit of happiness to the baby girl and her family.  I pray God’s love is felt each time they wrap her in it.

I’m linking with my Friday Finishes link ups found in my sidebar.

Till next time…

Rita

Craftsy

Craftsy’s BIG Summer Sale: Save Up to 50% on ALL Online Classes!

**This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links Want to learn a new skill or brush up on an old one? Now is your chance! You cansave up to 50% off on ALL online classes at Craftsy’s BIG Summer Sale! Cooking, cake decorating, sewing, gardening and so much more… all up to 50% off, with some classes starting at just $9.99! This is a sale not to be missed, so make sure you hurry because it ends at 11:59pm MT on Monday, June 9th.

Offer: Craftsy’s BIG Summer Sale! Run Time: Thursday, 6/5 thru Monday, 6/9 at 11:59PM MT Details: Save Up to 50% off on all online classes, some starting at just $9.99! Text Links: Craftsy’s BIG Summer Sale Craftsy’s BIG Summer Sale: Save up to 50% on ALL Online Classes

IMG_1922

This is everything I will need to complete my next customer quilt for my sister-friend in Quebec.  This will be my third quilt made using the Zombie Apocalypse line by Riley Blake.  I love the little zombies in the design!  They are so cute!  I have added a few other fabrics that play well with this line.  The black with white skulls is another Riley Blake fabric called “Geekly Chic”.  And the large white skull fabric is an Alexander Henry fabric called “yorick”.  I believe this quilt will be loved by a teenaged boy, so I’m pretty safe in assuming my fabric choices are going to work out ok.

With all the great weather we’ve been having, my sewing time has taken a hit.  I spent Saturday laying a new walkway and sod to my (day job) office and Sunday was spent recovering from the whole ordeal!

IMG_1927

The garden centre ran out of sod, otherwise, the rest of the lawn would look as nice as the area around the stepping stones.  That’s this weekend’s job along with weeding the beds and mowing the ever-growing grass!  While I love the outdoor work, I don’t love the scheduling stress.  I wish I could pick and choose what I do when, HA!  Don’t we all!

Hopefully I’ll have more quilty bits to share, next time…

Rita

So, last time I mentioned I started a website to draw interest for my home decor sewing business.  Well, after just 2 weeks and a bit of word-of-mouth, I have finished my first customer quilt and have a couple orders in the queue!

IMG_1827

This sweet crib quilt went together so easily.  The customer brought me 16 finished blocks that she had made a while back.  I used some coordinating fabric from my stash to use for sashing, borders and binding.  I really can’t believe how perfectly the fabrics play together!  The backing fabric is repurposed curtains that allow the quilt to have a 3 generational link (grandmother, son, grandson).  So special!

IMG_1839

The backing fabric has these sweet bears in various outfits!  So cute!

IMG_1840

I did all over stippling to quilt it all together and I used the same yellow gingham for the binding.  I thought it would add a softer feel to the quilt than if I’d used a contrasting fabric.

IMG_1837

And voila!  All done and ready for snuggling!  I hope the lad that gets this will love it for years to come!

I have an order for a quilt that will be used and loved in Quebec.  A sister-friend has asked me to duplicate my “Jeepers Creepers” quilt (below) for one of her sons.  While I can’t get all the exact fabrics, I did order some very similar along with the Zombie Apocalypse fabrics featured in the quilt.  I will be starting that one as soon as the shipment of goodies arrives!  I love getting squishy mail!

IMG_1788

My sister is trusting me to cut into her beautiful fabric to make kitchen cushions (I’m happy to start when I get the fabric – hint, hint).  I foresee this as being pure bliss!  I love making things for my family!  I know my sister will love anything I make (and she is optically challenged when it comes to my mistakes).

I have an order for kitchen and dining room curtains that I will be working on when fabric choices are made, and a pending order for kitchen seat cushions.  I’m thinking these may be put on the back burner for a while though.  It is hard to compete with the big box stores for pricing when it comes to cushions.  I feel a tad bit guilty charging the prices I need to, but I also have to remind myself that these cushions would be custom made!

All in all, I’m having a blast with this fledgling business!  I pray often, asking the Lord to guide me in this decision and if He wills it, to send me more business!  Only time will tell if this will be a viable option to allow me to “give up my day job”.

If I may be so bold to ask, if you know of anyone needing home decor sewing, could you send them my way?

Oh, and one more sweet tidbit… my brother has been sewing up a storm!  Yup, my brother!  He bought a second-hand sewing machine (at the thrift store?) a while ago to make cushions for his sailboat.  I stopped by the other day and saw his progress.  Very impressive!  He is working with marine vinyl, marine-grade thread and very basic supplies (scissors, paper templates, ruler).  I’m not sure why I’m so surprised, he has an engineer’s mind, very detail oriented.  Well, I got nosy and turned his work over to look at the backside of his pieced vinyl seat top.  WOW!  I think maybe he should go into business!  Perfection doesn’t even come close to describing it.  I will have to take pictures the next time I am over there.  It will be a long labour of love for him.  He is disabled from a car crash and can only work at it for short periods but when it will be done, it will look AH-MAZE-ING!

It’s so nice to have someone to share my stitch-y obsession with!

Till next time…

Rita

I’ll be joining a few link ups in my sidebar, go check them all out!

Well, faithful peeps!  I sort of went awol on you for a while.  I suppose I needed a bit of down time. Time to recharge after the “never-ending winter”.

I have been spending time with my Mom, who is now settled comfortably in a nursing home.  Her mind is fading and I’m trying to spend as much time as I can before the disease makes her forget her world.

I spent a lovely week away with my son on a Caribbean cruise, while the hubby stayed home to pay for it!  His turn next time!

I’ve had some wonderful sewing days thrown in there too!  Let me show you!

IMG_1788

I finished this throw quilt, made from Zombie Apocalypse fabric by Riley Blake.  I used a pattern that is supposed to look like chain-link but I think it gets lost with the busy-ness of the fabric.  It will be auctioned off at a car show on June 22nd in Plattsville, Ontario, Canada.  Our youth group at church is hosting a Classic Car Show from 1-4pm to raise money for the youth to go to Kamloops, BC for the youth convention.  If you are in the area, stop by for some car eye candy and maybe bid on my quilt!  I haven’t put a label on it yet, any suggestions for a name?

IMG_1794

I pieced the back using large pieces of the same fabric with some Kona Coal thrown in for good measure.  The binding is a bit scrappy, I used some orange eyeballs from the Zombie Apocalypse line and some black fabric from my stash.

IMG_1797

I quilted it using FMQ in a spider web pattern.  It was surprisingly easy and quite meditative.  I watched old episodes of The Guardian on Netflix.  Gotta love me some Simon Baker!  I could watch that man for hours!  *sigh*

IMG_1783

I’m nearly done this quilt (finally)!  I still need to attach the binding but with a full week of rain in the forecast, I thought I better get a photo while the getting was good.  This is still from last year’s MSBHQAL and I finally got to quilting it.  I struggled with what pattern to quilt.  I feel I took the cheater’s way out… I ditch-stitched it.  It looks pretty sweet from the back, especially when you take into consideration the backing fabric.

IMG_1781

The backing fabric has strong geometric shapes similar to the herringbone pattern on the front.  The colour isn’t coming through on the photo, it is very bright and most of the colours are found in the fabrics on the front of the quilt.  I am binding it in this fabric as well.  Can’t tell you what it is.  The selvage really didn’t say.  Pity.

I am a full month behind now in the RSC2014 and I’m not terribly upset by it.  The colour for April was purple and I’m not sure how much purple I actually have.  I know I’ll get the squares done, I just need to sit still long enough to sort through my scrap bins.  Whew!  That’s going to be a chore.  I’m waiting to see what the colour will be for May.  Something spring-like, I’m sure!

Oooh!  And guess what?  I have ordered a quilting frame kit!  It should be here in a few days.  I’m excited, I hope I’m not going to be disappointed.  I spent the weekend at the Creativ Festival with two lovely ladies and kept wandering off on my own to research long-arm quilting machines.  The problem… I can not justify spending $10,000 right now!  Maybe if I get my quilt-y business up and running, but not before then.  The kit is a build-yourself kit and uses your domestic sewing machine.  The kit is being specially made to fit my particular machine.  I plan on practicing my FMQ on this set up before I make the leap to a “real” long-arm machine.  I’ll do a proper post after I test drive it for a while.

Last, but not least… I now have a website!  I will be selling some of my wares on this site and taking custom orders for quilts and home decor items.  Check it out!

I’ll be linking with my link ups in my sidebar.

I promise not to stay quiet for so long.  Till next time…

Rita

Soscrppy

The colour for March is not blue, not green but right in between… some call it teal, some aqua.  Whatever the name, the colour is gorgeous.  When I first saw this was the colour for the month I was worried I didn’t have much to work with but when I started searching my piles of stash and in my scrap bins, I was rewarded with lots to choose from.  I even ended up having more than I needed!  I may be a bit late this month but here is what I came up with…

I made two ticker tape blocks again.  I am loving these blocks so much and they go together really fast!

P1020706

Here’s my log cabin block.

P1020714

I made a string block again.

P1020709

I’m going to miss linking up this Saturday as I will be without internet service for a few days so I thought I’d link up with last week’s RSC2014.

Till next time…Rita

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 195 other followers