Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Chicken Scratch, Anyone?

How about Gingham Lace?
Star Topper - Chicken Scratch Embroidery

Also known as Depression Lace, Amish Embroidery, and Tic-Tac-Toe embroidery among others, this technique uses just a few simple stitches to embellish gingham checkered fabric and give the appearance of a lace overlay, depending on the placement of lights and darks.

Stitch Details

My sister had these little gingham toppers in her collection.  We're not sure if they were our Mother's or Grandmother's tablecloths.

Tiny hand-stitched rolled hem.  Looks like my Mother's handwork.
A well-used Tablecloth
Stitch Details

Since Gingham is making a comeback these days, I thought I'd look in to this adorable vintage embroidery technique.

Check it out on Cutting Corners over at Riley Blake Designs. ↓↓  Click to see the tutorial...
Cutting Corners with Riley Blake Designs

...and directions to make this sweet little pincushion.

Have you made anything with gingham?  Have you tried chicken scratch embroidery?  Mdm. Samm is hosting a Superpower Stitchery hop, coming in the next few days - maybe we'll see more!  I think my next project will be to make a little topper of my own, along with some gingham cloth napkins with a Spring motif. Yes.  Then maybe Spring will come.  

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

March Quilty Madness. A recap.

Thanks to all those who took the time to comment on the giveaway the other day to share how you began your quilting journey - and what quilty things you did in celebration of National Quilt Day this month!  Wonderful stories - lots of creating and sharing going on in the quilt world - one stitch at a time.

Around here, we definitely honored National Quilting Day/Week/Month, all month long!  Here are some highlights:

Daughter Chelsea made this batik Star Medallion lap quilt top about 6 years ago.  She drew out the quilting motifs for me to quilt and calls it her "Carpenter's Daughter." She's my binding expert and finished it herself. Yay - it's done!

Visited a Vintage Fair:

Added a new sewing machine to the collection...  Isn't she a cutie?

I finally set about organizing the sewing room chaos in to a respectable space to welcome friends, complete with little stores of chocolate.

Even my husband pitched in.  First he worked on my Mom's old buffet, then he got out a rotary cutter (!)  I know, right?  Bless his heart.  He's been cutting out more Carpetbag kits.  Maybe it was the chocolate?

Daughters, friends, neighbors and guild sisters have stopped by.  Some of them stayed into the wee hours (one friend and her daughters quilted all night long!), because we just can't get enough quilty goodness, I guess.

We've tested a few new patterns.
Hosted a few classes.
Made a few bags.
Worked on some UFOs.

In addition, I attended the annual USU Sewing Training for FACS (Home Ec) teachers and 4-H leaders from around the state, teaching  my version of an orange peel / faux cathedral window table runner from the RBD Circles video.

My girls and I presented our trunk show, "Generations" for a group in Salt Lake City. "Hearts Stitched Together in Unity and Love" was the theme.

Attended my Longarm Quilt Guild meeting where someone I didn't know had found my free pattern online, made it, quilted it and brought it for Sew & Tell!

And then, of course... I received my advance copies of Quiltmaker May/June '14.  Sew Happy!  And in honor of the little Hexie Meadow on the cover, the Riley Blake goodie bundle winner has been chosen and notified.  I'm still waiting to hear back before I can announce...

Whew, what a month!  And like one of the comments the other day, "Isn't every day Quilting Day?" My answer is YES.

Happy Sewing!

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Quiltin' and Singin'

It's a busy week for both of my passions...

Busy in the sewing room today, cutting kits for a class I'll teach at the upcoming Home Machine Quilting Show.  Part II of my interview with Diane today over at Quiltmaker's Quilty Pleasures shows a full picture of one of the projects:

And on the design wall today:  a mini-version of "Sheep Shape" cut out with AccuQuilt half-hexie dies.  These teeny little sweeties will have finished sides measuring 1-1/4". "Sew" easy!!  Get your pattern in the latest Quiltmaker magazine!

 Add a little hexagami...

This little cutie will finish to be a 12" x 14" block.

HMQS board members met last night to work out final details and preparations for our event coming up in just four weeks!  I get a little giddy, thinking of hob-nobbing with this impressive lineup of instructors!  I'm excited to take some classes.

My job on the HMQS board is to help set up the show, hang quilts, assist the NQA-certified quilt judges as a scribe, and manage the quilted garments division of the show.  I usually participate in a design challenge, and this year will make a little quilt with fabrics supplied by Riley Blake Designs, to be sold at auction for charity.  And... because they know I like to sing, we open the show with a little number by yours truly.

Last year's theme was "That's Amore'", so of course I had to sing that melody, only with different words...
♫♪...."Take a class, build your stash, (pay with cash so your husband won't know----)
Scusi mi, gotta go  to the Home Machine Quilting Show - I adore', that's Amore'! ♪♫

This year's theme is A Quilter's Symphony.  Now, I need to come up with some quilty words to go along with some symphonic tunes... Do you have any favorite symphonies??  I'm working on the perfect mashup:
Beethoven's  Symphony no. 9 (Ode to Joy)
William Tell Overture (Lone Ranger theme)
Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture (featured on a recent Subway ad)
Beethoven's Symphony no. 5 (da na na nah... da na na nah)
Maybe Handel's  Hallelujah Chorus?  I sing that one regularly with my choir... :)

Speaking of choir - we'll be singing all weekend long, which I adore.  We get to do this every six months for church conference.  And even when we're not singing, this weekend will feature re-broadcasts of us in one of my favorite performances since I joined the choir:  An Evening with James Taylor (!)  Big fan, to put it mildly.  Can't wait to see this from the other side of the stage!  I'm pretty sure they'll have live streaming available too.  Check for details here:

Preview of James Taylor with the Tabernacle Choir to be aired this weekend!

I'm including one of the choir's CDs in the giveaways both >> HERE << and at >> Quilty Pleasures <<.  Be sure to enter - we'd love to hear from you!
Happy Quilting... and Singing!

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