Thursday, October 31, 2013

Blustery End to October

Good afternoon, or Happy Halloween to those of you who enjoy the holiday.    Don't think there is going to be much trick or treating around here.  Lots of rain, and wind.  When you live in a very old home with a very old standing seam roof the first few big storms when the seasons change always kind of make you worried.  Will the 150 year old roof last?  Will it leak?

Anyway, how did you do for your goals for the month of October?  Mine were so sew.  Time to link up with Carrie over at A Passion for Applique' for the Nothing by UFO's Linky Party.

1.  Magic Carpet Ride quilt.  Not finished.  :(
I have the binding sewn on, but it has not been sewn down completely yet since I am doing it by hand.    I need to just find a good movie and work on it.  DH snuggles under it even with the binding not completely sewn on.  I am waiting for him to get a pin in him.

2.   Bestie's Birthday gift it was done, and in the mail.  Love when I get something completed.

3.  My table runner.  Not finished.  I started playing with pebbling and it takes a while.  I am having fun playing with the quilting though. 
4.  Ginger Rose still not done.  I did break down and buy a supreme slider and after working on the table runner and excited about getting to work on this more in earnest.
5.  Farmer's Wife I did get my 8 blocks for the month finished.

I am kind of stoked about how much my piecing skill has increased since starting the Farmer's Wife.  I can finish about 6 blocks a day and keeping a reasonable goal of about 8 a month or roughly 2 per week keeps it fresh.
6.  Lazy Sunday is still languishing in its box.
7.  Jewel Box did not work on it at all this month.
8.  Quilty Barn Along Block.  I finished all of the original barns and am read to get all the sashing done, and make the top.  The Barns with silos I am still 3 behind.
9.  No country charmer blocks done this month
10.  Did not work on my next donation quilt
11-12.  I did finish my mug rugs for the swap and they were sent off.  Nice to get these done ahead of time, and the recipient was very pleased.

I will say that no UFO was completely finished this month, but I met 5 of my monthly goals so not bad overall.  How did you do?

Monday, October 28, 2013

Baby Lock Melody

The Blogger's quilt festival,  one of the prizes is a Baby Lock Melody.  OK yeah I know you are thinking if you are a regular reader of my block, "Like she needs another sewing machine."  In order to enter it asks you to create a blog post as to why you would like the Melody. 

My newest machine is a Husquvarna Viking 855 which I mainly use for quilting.  While it is only about 5 years old it doesn't have the automatic needle up or down like the Melody, the thread trimmer, or the knee bar.  The more I quilt, the more that those features appeal to me. 

If you would like a chance to win the Baby Lock Melody head on over to the Bloggers Quilt Festival at Amy's Creative Side.

Life at a Mad Wobble

It has been a very busy last few days. 

Friday I scheduled the Cable guy to come.  He was here bright and early, and our internet and cable are working so much better.   Not only does everything work better, but our bill be be about $60 cheaper a month! 

After the cable guy left I actually managed to finish 2 farmer's wife blocks for a total of 8 this month.  I love hitting a goal.
Honey's Choice

Temperance Tree
 Saturday I had a few hours between jobs and so I decided to work on a barn block for the Quilty Barn Along.  Did you know that Lori will be removing the instructions at the end of December from the Bee in My Bonnet Blog?  Wow that means I need to get a move on.  I started counting.  I had only 8 of the regular barns, and 3 of the barns with Silos.  I had 3 regular barns and 4 barns with Silos saved to reference, which meant somehow I was missing a barn.  I spent hours looking for the one I was missing.  I finally figured it out and found the link to that barn, and go to work on the barns based upon the dates they were published.

See my cutie patootie turtles in the window?  I am still using mostly scraps, and made the egg basket, but wanted to pick up the green in the flower striped fabric and basket.  As of today one down 7 more to go. 

Thursday, October 24, 2013

A Baking Farmer's Wife

Thursday is my last "free day" of this week, in fact it is my last free day until next Thursday.  Between a cable guy appointment between 8am-12 pm being at work by 4 pm, working a double on Saturday, and a Birthday Party Sunday, working Monday, Tuesday, and a visit to the hospital on Wednesday I think this is the most scheduled up I have been in eons. 

When I say a free day it means I don't really have anywhere to be, or a whole lot to do, at least in my mind.  The reality is I did have stuff to do.  DH has a pot luck at work and  he wanted to take my Banana Whipped Cream Cake.  I really need to find a good banana cake recipe, but for now I use a Duncan Hines Banana Cake mix, make the cake per the directions on the box,  but add 2 diced up bananas to the recipe, and bake for 40 minutes in a 9 x 13 pan.  I make two cakes.  The "frosting" is a stabilized whipped cream frosting, and between the two layers are sliced bananas and whipped cream.  Oh how I wish I took a picture before I covered it and put it in the refrigerator. 

Either it is going to be a hit or DH is going to have to stop at his momma's and leave cake, and we will be eating cake for quite a few days.  I know that DH and the SIL love this cake, and I was trying to teach the daughter via text last week while at work how to make the cake.  UGH! :(

While working on the cake I worked on my Farmer's Wife Blocks

Peaceful Hours
Country Farm

Water Wheel

Northern Lights

Single Wedding Star
Not too shabby considering I try to get 8 finished per month.  Two more and I will be at my goal.  I wonder if I will get any done tomorrow waiting for the Cable Guy to show up between 8 and noon?

Considering it is the 24th of October just a couple of pics from my flower bed.
 I am not too sure but the Lantana loves this spot in the flower bed, one small plant went crazy this year.  I love the different reds, oranges, and yellows in it. 
The Dahlia's are late, and I really need them to die back so I can dig the tubers and store for the winter.  While watching all the farm equipment rushing to get the soybeans and feed corn in today I notice we had s*** flakes.  How can it be sunny with big floppy wet flakes falling at the same time?  I guess I just have to resign myself to winter's coming. 

Fall Bounty of Mug Rugs

Good afternoon on this beautiful, semi-sunny late October Wednesday.  There is definitely a chill in the air!  I keep hearing the S*** word a lot.  How can we have s*** when just a couple of weeks ago it was like 80 degrees and we had a bonfire and stayed out until almost midnight?!?!

I finished my mug rugs!  Can you tell I am excited? 

The Goose Chase Mug rug.

Wow I love how the colors look in the sunlight.  The dark is a pumpkin patterned batik called Aspen.  The yellow orange are batik scraps left from my table runner which has a sunflower print.  I used the yummy coats and clark thread that I purchased for the table runners. 
I just did a simple stitch in the ditch.  Or as someone else said once in the ditch, over the ditch, beside the ditch....  Also someone told me that the "staggered geese" is called migrating geese and you can find it in a book called Sew a Row Quilts by Karin Hellaby and was originally published in 2001. 

Cider Time Mug Rug-

See there is my leaf with some free motion quilting following the veins, my paper pieced mug, and my applique apple which kind of looks like a cherry bomb.  Oh well.

DH brought home a handful of little pumpkins that are growing all over the landfill.  What great props along with my copper metallic looking squirrel 

It is so nice to have those finished.  OK give me a hint peeps, when you do a swap with someone is it ok to add a few other things than just the mug rugs? 

How is your Wednesday stacking up?  I have more pebbling to do on my table runner so off I go. 

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

The New Girl

The last couple of weeks I have managed to accumulate a couple more ladies (sewing machines).

There was a barn sale down the road and of course I had to go.  I mean do you know what kind of treasures you can find in a barn that is chock full?

I found this beauty.

She is a Singer model 15 from 1952.  Her cabinet is not bad looking, nice and sturdy, and overall she looked pretty good. 
The bobbin case was there as well as the book and an extra bobbin.
Do you see the size of that bobbin?  As old as that thread is it needs to be removed, but oh boy that is a lot of thread!

What is even better?  A couple of months ago at an auction I purchased this sewing bench for a couple of dollars. 

The legs match the sewing machine cabinet. 

DH cleaned her and then I found this under the throat plate.
Yuck!  I haven't sewn on her yet.  I have to empty a bobbin and wind a new one.  I think her name will be Lise after the Leslie Caron character in the Oscar winning movie of that year American in Paris. 

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Wild Geese Inspiration

I kept staring at my original pattern of the staggered geese that I had created.  While I could not execute it as a paper pieced pattern there had to be a way.  I sat at my sewing machine with a bunch of scraps and started making flying geese bodies, with just one wing.  I then wondered what would happen if I made one with a stitch and flip wing about 1 1/2 inches longer.


I am not going to do more than back, quilt and bind.  While not perfect not too bad.  My experimental staggered geese were only 1 x 2.  I think I will call it the Goose Chase Mug Rug.  

I still had one more mug rug to make for my swap.  In Michigan it is apple orchard time.  Many orchards press their own cider, make cider donuts, and add hay rides, corn mazes, petting zoos and it is quite the festival.  Dh insists we go to a specific orchard and we purchased 1 1/2 bushels of apples this year.  These apples are not for cooking, they are for eating.  The name is Mutsu they are not commercial apples, they are not "pretty enough", but they have a wonderful flavor, not quite as tart as a Granny Smith, but not as sweet as a Golden Delicious.  Lovely firm flesh.

DH will actually spend an exorbitant amount of money on Cider from this orchard, actually more than he will pay for a pair of jeans. 

Because it is cider season I thought a mug rug would be appropriate.

Paper pieced mug, my sugar maple leaf which I had created the other day, and a raw edge applique' apple on the cup. I am going to do a bit of stitching on the maple leaf, and around the cider time tag I made.  I was pleased with how it turned out. 

The post man left a package yesterday and inside it were oodles of goodies.  I won 20 fat quarters from Island Batiks from the Twisting to the 60's With Batiks blog hop. 

Mdm Sam also included these super cute pins!

A cute window cling, and note cards.

Dh just looked and smiled, shaking his head and asked, "What is the saturation point for fabric?"  I just smiled, mentioned I live in a 5 bedroom home, and texted my daughter.  Oh and he went out to grab some cleaner to clean up my newest acquisition.  More on that another time. 

I have accomplished lots the last couple of days.  I love it when I feel like I see progress. 

Monday, October 21, 2013

Execution of the Geese

***Disclaimer***  No waterfowl were injured in the interest of making this post! They are protected by the Migratory Bird Act of 1918. 

Remember a couple of weeks ago when I posted that I had seen a pattern on Pinterest called Staggered Flying Geese but I could not find it anywhere?  (You can see the post here.)

Here is my pattern I drafted.  I thought it would be easy to do paper piecing.  Then I started and lets just say that while the idea was fabulous, the execution was less than desirable. 

I wanted to make the staggered flying geese for a mug rug swap using some left over batiks from my stash in fall colors.  I decided that it was necessary to rethink my options. 

I still wanted to do some flying geese so I whipped up this while listening to my Kindle. 

Not bad, just the right size, but something was missing.  It needed more.....

We have this lovely maple tree in the side yard.  I found a leaf.  I took it in, threw it onto the scanner, and scanned it onto a piece of fabric.  I then carefully cut it out. 

Yes this is the color that the leaf was,, and this is my cutout.

I placed it on the mug rug.

Yikes!  Definitely not going to work.  Now I have a sort of mug rug, and a fabric leaf. 

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

No Sewing Fun

The weekend was beautiful.  The weather was terrific.  The youngest daughter came and helped DH stack wood in the woodshed. 

We had the family over for a bonfire, hot dog, and s'mores roast.
We cleaned up the garden on Sunday, and took down the cyclone fence that is 20+ years old and removed the posts, and all of it has been taken to be recycled.

Not much real quilty sewing going on though.  I had two pair of DH work pants to fix.
My sewing machine has a darning stitch which helps patch the fabric.  Nice, but the adhesive on the patches does gum up the needle a bit.  So I had to stop every row or two and peel it off the needle. 

I did a lot of unsewing.  I removed a zipper from this jacket which had broke and replaced it with a metal zipper.   I really despise when I spend a lot of money on a jacket and it has a plastic zipper.  I feel confident that I can fix it now and will replace two more after I order them,  27 inch metal zippers are few and far between.

I then had started to finish the binding on the Magic Carpet Ride quilt, but was not happy with the machine sewing so I unstitched it and it will be done by hand. 
I measured my seams and I need to fix a few areas yet. 

I did work on the quilting of my Star Crossed Table Runner.  I am working on pebbles.  I think it looks alright so far.  Have I mentioned that I love this thread, and the color?

Pebbles do take a long time though!

Finally I do the fab shop hop, it is a great way to discover new shops.  Many of the shops I purchase from I discovered through the Fab Shop Network.  Also they have a great little tool to do a "search" for fabrics, tools, patterns.  I have used it on many occasions to locate fabric when I run short.  I won a $10 gift certificate for the August hop from Happy Crafters.  I used my $10 to buy some green batik for the swap that I participate in. 

Not a lot of "fun quilty sewing" but a lot of necessity sewing.  Do you ever get times when you have a lot of that type of sewing?

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Double Dog Dare

First off I want to say I am not trying to offend anyone.  I think all of the different blogs I visit are wonderful, the artists are truly talented and inspirational, and I get a chuckle out of them all at one time or another, and eventually really get a good belly laugh at myself.   I am going to admit I am guilty of all of the following.

How many of us have seen someone's quilt and had to make one.  We drop everything we are doing to make it or one like it. Yes I hear the Siren call of the Swoon blocks, the granny squares, or scrappy trip around the world.  Have I succumbed?  Not yet, but when wonderful quilters make so many gorgeous ones it is difficult not to jump in and try it. 

Then there is a challenge and/or a QAL?  The gauntlet has been thrown down.  Do we join in or cower complaining we are too busy.  Even though we have a zillion other projects going, we throw another iron into the fire.  Buy the fabric and join in.  

Or how about a mystery quilt?  Cut 750 HST.  Make 600 flying geese.  You know you have joined along in one of these.  After the second twelve hours of cutting pieces you wonder what the heck were you thinking, but you keep going because you have already purchased the fabric and cut up the majority of it.

Block Of the Month can it really be a BOM when you have a whole year sitting in a bag with none of them completed?  

Swaps of some sort.  Whether you are making a pincushion, mug rug, or swapping fat quarters, bee blocks.  There are always those that make stunning projects, those of us that are average, and those of us that are late.  

Where am I going with this?  I was laughing because I have been or am guilty of all of the above.

QAL I  have a couple going along.  One I am behind 4 blocks, everyone is actually finishing their quilts, another I am about 8 blocks behind, and another well, I am not even in the first lap.  Will I finish them.  Oh yeah they are projects I love.

Country charmer

Mystery quilts?  I have one I am working on.  I finished 2 parts there are 2 parts left and the big reveal took place a couple of months ago. 
Swaps.  What really made me laugh today, I belong to a group where we swap batiks.  Either 5 inch charm squares or  2 1/2 inch strips WOF.  There were two groups of strips which closed out this week that I needed to get my fabric cut, and mailed.  Winter wonderland, and Santa's surprise.  Winter Wonderland I chose a Snow Day Batik from Moda which was a medium blue with mittens, holly, and snowflakes.  While it looked great on paper when I ordered, or on the computer, when I received it boy was it not what I was expecting.  The pattern was very large, and by the time I cut the strips you could not tell what it was.  I told them it was Winter Wonderland all right, the other "strippers were going to wonder how it was winter".

Finally how many of us have been duped into showing our sewing room, sewing machines, or stash?  They are a cross between the Christmas Newsletter, and an intervention.  Hello my name is Colette and I belong to sewing machine anonymous.  :D  Boy oh boy do you come away thinking I need to clean up my room, or organize it better, I need a newer sewing machine, or my stash is a complete disaster!!!!

My point.  Today over at Pigtales & Quilts, the lovely Thearica showed us all of her scissors and challenged us to show ours too. Thearica gets a lot of her scissors from Ken's Sewing Centerr in Muscle Shoals, Alabama. They are doing a give away of a 7 inch pair of Gingher's to a lucky reader. Of course I succumbed to peer pressure.  Where is my mother now asking me, "If all of your friends jumped off a bridge would you too?" 

Ta Da!  Here are mine.

These are one of a set that remain from DH great grandmother.  She used to sew automobile upholstery for the Kaiser automobile company.  This is the smaller pair.  The larger pair were relegated to the basement to be cleaned more.  These were left in the junk drawer, and missed the cleaning.

My paper scissors I use to trim up paper for paper piecing, or making freezer paper templates.
These are my sewing scissors.  The blue handled were cheap but I have been using them for years.  The pinking shears with the black handles those were my ex- husband's grandmother's scissors that were given to me.

I bought these years ago, I use them for cutting wool, when I do applique'.
Embroidery scissors.  I keep a pair near a couple of my machines, one set on the ironing board, and another with my cross stitch.  The silver handle are my Gingher, I purchased them almost 30 years ago and for me at the time were very expensive.  I use them for embroidery and cross stitch.

By my count I am officially about 17 sets of scissors short to go by all my my sewing machines, or to match Thearica's collection.  I better get poppin to get caught up to have a set by each machine so I am not constantly hunting.