Monday, February 23, 2015

Sew Sweet Simplicity - Finale' (& Giveaway)

Here is my final installment on Jacquelynne Steves' free block of the month series.


The quilt center is sewn, but it's still in an evolving and growing status as I decide on borders.

My goal with this quilt was to use ONE layer cake (Adornit Crazy for Daisies), then supplement with a white background and my own scraps.  I also wanted to create each block with an emphasis on the star pattern using the reds in the layer cake.  Another goal was to be able to use the AccuQuilt die-cutting system to prepare my applique' pieces.  Then I made block #4 and didn't love it.  Too much red.

 So I bought a little more fabric and made another block using pattern #1.

Then I made another Block #2 to balance things out.


I needed a few setting blocks, so I used pieces from the layer cake:
I cut 10" squares diagonally in half and paired them with 10" background squares cut the same way to make hourglass blocks, and trimmed them to size.  Not my normal way of doing it, since it created all-bias edges, but with a little starch it will work,  and was a great way to grow the quilt.


Then I tried to put the quilt together.  Oops.

There was a time when I did not own a seam ripper.   I confess, it was a matter of arrogance, really.  I mean, after all, I don't really NEED one, right?!   Thank heaven my cute friend Fran gave me one as a gift.  And for this project, the little gadget and I became reacquainted...

Good thing I recently watched this video so I knew how to use it!!


Fixed the setting blocks and started to audition borders.  Colors are great, but, really, it's so busy!  Maybe I'll have to go with a plain border.  Then I spied it - OH, NO!   That center block is lying on it's side... urghghgh!  Time to get "frog-stitching" again... "Rip-it, rip-it, rip-it".


And of course, the bobbin ran out just as I was re-attaching it to the quilt center... sheesh. 

Whew!  Now it's all put back together as you see in the first picture.  I think it will make a great Spring wall hanging, or I could add a couple more borders for a baby quilt.  Maybe more open space for quilting detail.  I'll have to dream about it for a few more weeks while I learn to use my new longarm machine!

Now for the giveaway info:  Jacquelynne is giving away her fabulous digital e-book! Sew cute!

In addition, I'll throw in a new seam ripper, my orphan block #4 as pictured above, 
plus a little stack of fabric.   Leave a comment to tell us about your favorite quilting tool or gadget.  Be sure to include your email address if you are a no-reply blogger.

Giveaway will end next Monday (March 2nd).  


Jacquelynne also has a second special giveaway going on today, with more info on Thursday to kick off her 2015 free Block of the Month!   The free patterns for Sew Sweet Simplicity will only be available for the next month.  See all Jacquelynne's details on her blog ↓↓.  Be sure to stop by each of our Sew Sweet team for more inspiration and giveaways.

Jacquelynne ~ The Art of Home
Snoodles ~ Lily Pad Quilting
Teresa ~ A Quilt and a Prayer
Sandy ~ UpStairs Hobby Room
Deonn ~ Quiltscapes << thanks for the visit!
Barb ~ Bejeweled Quilts
Sandie ~ Crazy ‘Bout Quilts
Deanna ~ Wedding Dress Blue
Barb ~ Garden Path Quilts

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Sewing With Nancy...

So my cute friend Nancy wanted to learn how to paper-piece and came by to spend the day with me in the sewing room.  Yes, I was "Sewing with Nancy"!! *Ü*


Her adorable wonky house  pattern gave instructions for "Template piecing", aargh!!
1)  TRACE all the lines of each of three patterns on to separate papers.
2)  CUT out each individual section for every little piece of three different houses.
3)  ADD 1/4" to each and every side of each and every little template for all 27 pieces.
4)  TRACE around each piece on your fabric, then CUT out each individual section for all eight houses, labeling each of the 72 pieces so as not to get them mixed up...
5)  STITCH the blocks together.

Haha, yeah, right.

Instead, I gave her my basic paper-piecing lesson:
1)  COPY patterns by running them through the printer.
2)  SLAP your fabric on the back side of the paper
3)  STITCH on the lines of the paper.

OK, there is a little more to it than that, but man, if there is an easier way, you know?  You can check out my practically perfect paper-piecing lesson here >> "FooTStePS" (Fold, Trim, Stitch, Press, Smile!).  And just look at the result:  Big Smiles!


REPEAT:  Fold, Trim, Stitch, Press... She's still smiling, I can tell!

 ...more smiles!

Chhek out her directional background print - on grain, and all facing the same direction... YES!  By George, I think she's got it!

Then put a bird on it.

  Look what Nancy did!  Awesome!

And... here's what I did.  Made an owl pincushion and put a faux-piped binding on a mug-rug.  Then I made one measly, teensy little paper-pieced mini.  I used the "Add-an-Eighth" ruler for this one.

She'll be 3/4" square when she's finished.
Maybe I'll finally get that new lanyard done that I've been meaning to get to.

All in all, it was a productive, fun day, "Sewing with Nancy"!  And a bonus?  Chocolate Oreo cookie shakes at our local hangout, the Dairy Keen.  A great reward for a perfectly productive day.  Looking forward to the next Sew Day (Wednesdays, my house)!

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Love & Support

It's February - the season of LOVE.  It's also the month of Heart Health Awareness.  I found the perfect combination for my project on the "We Support You" blog hop!

Love & Support!
I recently received a letter from the state health department, reminding me to schedule my annual mammogram.  I usually do it around this time, but now each year when I change out my quilt decor for February, I'll have a great reminder to take care of it.  Regular checkups are so important too.

My Mother died of Adrenocortical carcinoma about 16 years ago -  a very rare, very aggressive form of cancer that caught her by surprise.  By the time the diagnosis was made, it was a mere 8 days until she passed away.  She was only 59.  She'd had a cough for several months, but didn't think anything of it.  She was never one to allow a little discomfort get in her way-she was one of those go-getters!  She had 11 of us kids, and there were a dozen grandkids at that point.  She enjoyed riding horses, writing poetry, stories and histories. She could sew anything and had just started her very first pieced quilt.  She went white-water rafting with my sister about 2 months earlier, and rode her horse just a few days prior to her passing.  She was a Cowgirl Poet, and always wore her red cowboy hat at poetry events.  Maybe that's why I like red so much...and sewing!
I used my I ♥ Applique' pattern and enlarged it 250%.  I found similar heart patterns to make both a post-mastectomy pillow, and a women's heart surgery pillow.  I added the sweet little scallops for a fancy finish on my little Valentine.  (See just how easy it is to make the scallops & prairie points HERE at my RBD Cutting Corners Tutorial today).  I also found a good Heart Health CHECKLIST just in case you are interested.

Now, I've got a couple of 3-1/2" Riley Blake Designs stackers to giveaway at the end of this hop on February 12th - Leave a comment and tell us one thing you plan to do for your health this year! (Giveaway now closed).
Cutting Corners with Riley Blake Designs

So, love yourself, be vigilant in taking care of yourself - stay healthy, live long and sew to your heart's content!  That's my wish for all of you!


A big thanks to Mdm. Samm @ Sew We Quilt, and our illustrious Cheerleader, Pat @ Scrapatches!  Remember, you can purchase the "We Support You" pattern from Madame Samm - send an email: madamesamm@me.com.

Full Hop Schedule HERE
Pinterest collection HERE.

UPDATE:  Congratulations to LeAnne - giveaway winner.  And thank you to all of you for your heartfelt comments and stories.  This is truly a tight-knit (or is it "stitched"?) community, sharing and supporting one another.

Friday, January 30, 2015

Support Group...

It's time for the "We Support You!" blog hop - sponsored by Mdm. Samm @ Sew We Quilt, and cheered along by Pat @ Scrapatches!
It all started with a friendship quilt.  This "We Support You" pattern by Madame Samm is now available for purchase ($12).  Send an email directly to Madame Samm: madamesamm@me.com. 

Hop by next Monday for my little installment in this fun hop!  Meanwhile, click here to see the full hop SCHEDULE <<

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