Thursday, January 28, 2010

Rouenneuries top finis!

I've been cheating on my cross stitch with my quilting. I've managed to put in a hour or so every evening to work on my Rouenneries quilt top. And it's finished! I LOVE how it turned out. I'm so happy with this fabric I'm thinking of buying the fat quarter set while I still have the chance. This was the fastest top I have put together in years. I usually work on quilts that take weeks but this one was a breeze. What a nice change of pace and I'll have to remember how much fun it is when I need a break from my more complected projects. I'm going to send this one out to be quilted in a simple meander pattern.

I'm almost finished with the second to last section on my lounge chair. I really, really want to have this stitched by Sunday evening but to tell the truth I have so many other projects calling my name right now that might not happen. :-) The only thing I know for sure right now is that I won't pick up another cross stitch project until the stitching is finished on this one. I'll never finish it if I do that!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

patchwork hearts

I had some quilt blocks left over from a quilt I did last year and I wanted to make some Valentine's Day stuff to decorate the house with so I turned four of them into little heart pillows. I like how they look. I'm going to buy some ribbon and put bows on some. I filled all my hearts with the walnut bird litter. That stuff is so nice to work with. :-) Give it a try if you haven't already. I got mine at PetsMart in a nine pound bag and used more than half of it already.

I then made some hearts out of flannel and some wovens that I had around. I want to put these in a wooden bowl but I have to find an old wooden bread bowl first. I love the primitive look I got.
I did manage to finish the second piece to my chair - finally! And finished off one more - ok it was the smallest section but it's done. :-) And I made a start to the fourth. After that one there are still three more all larger than the one I'm currently working on. I'm sure I'll be working on this until next week some time.
I also stuffed my primitive doll last night but I didn't put her together yet so I didn't take a photo. I also need to pick up some doll hair in brown as she is still hairless and has no face yet. All I have in my stash is Santa type hair and I want her to be a brunette. I suppose since I'm finally working on my doll I need to start on this:

I have a piece of Silkweavers Purely Primitive that should work nicely and I'll be doing mine in the blue colorway. My doll's dress will be tans and blues so the blueish apron should look nice.

Monday, January 25, 2010

So what's next?

Thanks so much for all your kind remarks about my Village! That was the most I ever had from a finish. :-) I'm all glowey.

So what is next? Several people asked that very question. I'm ready to go with Shores of Hawk Run Hollow but I think I want to finish some stuff first before I add to my WIP pile. I want to work on the Isa V Marquior from last year. I'm half way finished there and I even pulled it out last night and put it in my bag for the train this week (ended up not bringing it though). I even pulled out my HUGE Marquoir ABC Ancien Bleu & Rouge to look at. I'm half way with that one also. But I know there is a counting error on both sides of the border and I'm dreading trying to fix it. I think I need to push on there and not dwell on it too much. I mean it's not like any one I know is going to notice it. And I'm sure I won't even notice it at some point. :-) I have to get going on my six Christmas gifts - I have five of the charts I need in hand and I need to start to gather supplies.

Despite all this stitching talk going on in my head I spent most of my weekend quilting and sewing other things. Here are my first two blocks for the Civil War BoM that I just started. They took up much of my Saturday. When I was finished I started on a few other things but didn't take any photos. I'm working on some quilted hearts, some primitive heart pillows and a primitive doll that I want to use for the CHS apron chart that came out two years or so ago.

I was hoping to finish the chaise lounge stitching but didn't come even a bit close to that. The back of the chair is finished and I should finish the seat top today. Last night the plan was to put this aside for something else but I knew this morning if I took that step I would totally stop work on this because I'm not really enjoying the stitching. And I don't need another WIP so I'm going to push on. So back into my bag it went for this week's train rides.
On Sunday I cut out and started to piece my Rouenneries quilt. I managed to piece all the blocks and even start on some of the strips before I stopped for the day. It doesn't look like much now because there are hardly any of the red fabrics in this photo. But I'm sure I'll be able to finish the top next weekend and then get back to something else in my WIP box.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Houses of Hawk Run Hollow finis

Houses of Hawk Run Hollow - design by Carriage House Samplings
32 count Pearled Barley from Lakeside Linens
Recommended NPI - one over two

At 9:00pm last night I had just put in the last letter and only had the house to go and I said, what the heck, I might as well finish the bugger. :-) It only took a little while and she was done! I did make a few changes from the chart, I changed the name and date, House #9 is a different color and there are a few minor changes where the NPI color as charted wasn't enough contrast to suit me so I made a few things lighter or darker. Now if I can just find the $$$ to get this framed along with it's companion Village of Hawk Run Hollow all would be well in my world. I have the linen ready to go for Shores but I will hold off starting that for a while. I need a little break.

I have updated my for sale blog. If you have any questions, please email me. I will ship anywhere, you just have to pay for the shipping. :-)

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Almost :-)

Getting close! I'm thinking I'll be putting in the last stitches tomorrow evening. Edited to add: It will be Saturday - I'm having a night out on Friday - I just remembered. :-)

I haven't been working much on my lounge chair - I haven't had a sleep free train ride all week. :-) But I'll make that my evening project also until I'm done stitching it just to get it out of the way. I did find a new chair from Cat's Whiskers but they made it an exclusive to a shop called Needle Ny-dle No0 in Perth, Western Australia. It's a cute one and a different style from the others but since they made it so hard for me to purchase I'm not sure if I'm going to pursue it. But it's not available until July so I have a while to think on it.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

almost half way!

Like everyone said yesterday in my comments, the last block is going very fast - and I only stitched for a little while last night! Mostly because I had a good mail day. :-) I had to play with my new fabric for a while.
My French General fabric came in the mail yesterday. It's so beautiful! I had not seen the entire line because the store I went to in early December was already sold out of several bolts so this was the first time I saw everything. It's just wonderful. I can't wait to get my hands on it. Above are the big pieces that came with the pre-packaged kit. All 1/4 yard, 1/3 yard and fat quarter pieces.

I also received a layer cake - that is new to me since I've only started back with quilting recently. When I kinda stopped buying new stuff a couple of years ago Moda wasn't making all the pre-cuts yet. But I find that they are very cool and I'd love to pick up a couple of quilt books that use the pre-cuts. And it all came is this cute bag. I can't wait to get going on it. Somehow I think that is going to be my weekend regardless of my other quilt projects in progress. :-)

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

One to go!

I finished up House #8 of Hawk Run Hollow last night! Only one to go and I'll finish that one by the end of the coming weekend. So I'm only over by one month. As such, I'm going to leave the 2009 date I put in. :-)
Here she is in all her glory. I'll be so glad when this one is over. I love working on it but I'm ready for the break. My new evening project will be the six month long Floral Glove Needlecase project. Tracey expects to mail that by the end of this month. I'm sure I will need something else to fill in but I'm sure I won't have any problem finding something to work on. I have the chart and linen for Shores of Hawk Run Hollow but I would rather that be a focus piece than an add-in so I'll hold off for now on purchasing the NPI that I need to work on the first block. I was thinking maybe Cranberry Sampler from Needle's Praise but I know I want to do that in silk and I would have to purchase them and that's not in the budget right now.
Here is the second block of the month quilt from JoAnn Fabrics - called Mystic Blues - that I wanted to finish over the long weekend. You can see I made good progress but did not complete the top (I already had all 12 pieced). I started putting together all the border sections on Saturday. There is a ton of piecing in all the borders. When I got to the second to the last section I saw that I had been given an incorrect set of fabric. I had two of one section and none of another. This kit was from 2005 and I figured it would be hopeless to try to find either the fabric or a setting kit. So I first checked eBay and I did find an entire 13 piece set up for auction and the current price was almost $70.00. I didn't pay that much for all my sections and there was no way I was going to pay that amount again just to get a half yard of material. That pretty much ended my quilting mojo for the evening. First thing Monday morning I went out to my local JoAnn's because I felt I had to at least check and see if I could find some sort of replacement for the pieces that I needed to finish the quilt. You are not going to believe it but they still had yardage of the exact fabric I needed! It was about 85% of a color match and since it's on the border I didn't think it would matter. So I puchased enough to replace all the fabric in the borders so they would all be the same. So I spent the rest of my quilting time on Monday ripping out what I had already ready pieced and putting in the new stuff. By the time I had finished with that I was pretty much done for the day so I put the quilting away. But when I take it out again all that is left is putting the borders around the piece. :-) Not sure when that will be but I'm good where I left off. This one I might give away. :-) We shall see.

Next up will be the first set of blocks for my Civil War project. I'm sure I'll have it by Saturday. I'd also like to get more done with my Thimbleberries Paintbox Stars project. I don't want to start anything else large until I finish that.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

at last!

I just finished up piecing my Countryside Cottage quilt from JoAnn Fabrics. This was a BOM from 2004. :-) Yeah, it's been around my house for a while. As I was purchasing them (and never paying more than $5.00 or so dollars per month due to a good use of the 50% off coupons and JoAnn's sales) I knew I hated the center block so I purchased several fat quarters in the fabrics that were used. I designed a block that I thought would look nice. And it does! I'm very happy with how it turned out. So happy that I might not give it away as was the plan. :-)

Here is a photo of how the quilt was designed - I hated that center applique block. I think mine is much nicer and I can't believe how much my new center blocked changed the look. :-) Last night I found another JoAnn's BOM quilt also from 2004 that is almost finished. I think I'm going to work on that and try to get it totally pieced by tomorrow afternoon. That way I can almost justify my purchase this yesterday:
It's the Rouenneries Quilt Kit by French General - I saw this fabric line in person last month and fell in love with it. Reds, grays and taupe. What's not to love?

I also am almost finished with House #8! Yeah - so far it's been a great weekend and I still have one more day to go!

It's a near perfect day in Gurne, it's sunny outside (if a bit cold), I'm quilting, I plan to stitch in a couple of hours and I'm grilling a turkey outside on the rotisserie and dinner is going to be super. Nummy!

Friday, January 15, 2010

a bird and a cat

Getting pretty close to finishing up my first section of the Chaise Lounge Chair. I love browns and pinks together.
With a good push I'll be finished with House #8 by the end of the three day weekend. And I don't intend on letting any grass grow under me with regards to the last block of the piece. The piece is dated 2009 and I have no intention of changing it so I need to get it finished before month's end. It should be a piece of cake. :-)

I have no plans (YEAH) for the long weekend except to stitch, quilt and play with the pugs. :-) For me that is the perfect weekend. The only thing that could make it any better would be if I could play with them outside in the grass - but it's January and there is nothing but snow outside. :-)

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

A new quilt!

But first my updates. :-)
Still making good progress with House #8. I have next Monday off work and I hope to really get some good stitching time in (plus of course some quilting time).

And here is the back piece of my chaise lounge chair. I'm hoping to move onto another section by the weekend. It's pretty fast stitching and once you know the repeats you hardly have to look at the chart.

Here is my new quilt! It's a block of the month quilt called Civil War Tribute and it's made up of fabrics designed by Judie Rothermel. I had been eyeing it for quite some time and I kept telling myself that I didn't need another quilt project and the plan was to go through some of my stash. But I kept going back and going back to look at it. It's a biggy - 100 x 112 and will fit my bed nicely. But I don't need another quilt project. :-) Well.... I was reading blogs yesterday in an effort to get caught up and I saw that Laurie over at the Corgi Cottage had just completed the first two blocks of the series. I was sunk at that point and I knew I had to do it. Browns, burgundy and blues with what looks like set in seems! Perfect! So I signed up for the quilt and should have my first package next week. :-) I can't wait to get going.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

it's a house!

Here is my progress on House #8. I really want to turn this one around but since I'm only working on it in the evenings it's going to be slow going.

Here is my new start for my train rides. It's the Victorian Memories Chaise Lounge from Cat's Whiskers. I'm not sure if they plan on doing a new one for this year's Nashville Market but we should know soon! :-) I was going over last year's blog entries for timing and we are a week or two away from starting to see what's coming out. I'm going to stick to my plan on stitching from my stash for the most part this year. Of course my Loose Feathers are always an exception and if Cat's Whiskers puts out another chair in the series I will purchase that also. It's going to kill me though to stand on the sidelines and watch every one else buy all the goodies! LOL!

Thanks for all your kind words about not only my quilting but my oak cabinet. It generated a ton of comments and questions and I'll address some now.

With regards to the exchange my family does each year it started out with the five of us kids and my parents taking turns to make one gift. Several years ago my dad never completed his turn and we no longer require the parents to make something for us but they still get a gift. Somewhere along the line my brother in laws uncle got included so we are obligated to make six gifts. This year is the end of the current rotation and I'm last so this year it's my turn. We are going to take a vote at the end of the year if we are going to continue to do it. I'm pretty sure we are going to stop for a year or two and this will be a change for us to stop included the extra person. At this point I'm planning on stitching six Laura J. Perin quilt counted needlepoint designs and I'll put them into boxes. I have already purchased two patterns and plan to get going by the end of the month.

Now as for my quilting all I see when I look at it are the part that don't line up! But we are always harder on ourselves aren't we? I do most of my quilts when I can by chain stitching a section at a time. So like something suggested when I do geese, I do one side, cut the extra fabric then iron it and then do the other side. If I have a ton of geese like I did for this one, I will even break it down more to give myself a break. There are five different color ways in this quilt and I did each one separate. I really think this method helps with getting those points correct. Also when I piece two pieces of fabric together I always remember that the thread and fold does take up space so I piece short of a 1/4 of an inch. I use a very high quality thin thread from Presencia - it's a 60/3. I did a Harriet Hargrave class a couple of years ago and we spent quite a bit of time talking about tricks to get everything together as best we can. I believe I recall her saying she actually worked with the folks at Presencia to develop this thread. It makes a difference believe me. Not so much in large scale quilts but when you are dealing with a lot of small pieces those 1/32 of an inch add up by the time you are finished with the entire quilt. The thread only comes in four colors at that weight and I like to use the neutral grey the best and I buy it by the large cone. I even use it to quilt with. The stuff is amazing. When I first was at Harriett's I never thought I would get so excited about thread. :-) But this stuff does really help with getting back your seam allowances. It's all I use now. I also use this really cool fork pin - it helps from the butted seams shifting apart while you are sewing.

And of course the photo of the pugs generated some comments. It's not a case of Molly and Aoife not liking each other it's more like they just don't hang out much together. Molly is a bit of a loner and Aoife and Clancy are always glued at the hip so Aoife never really seeks out Molly's company.

Sunday, January 10, 2010


Something to show!

I worked a bit this weekend on my quilt called Paintbox Stars from Thimbleberries. This is the first of 30 blocks. Only 29 to go! :-) Those flying geese took forever. I think I've mentioned in the past that each year a member of my family makes the rest of us something for Christmas. This year it was my brother Marty's turn and he made us all this - a lovely oak cabinet.
I decorated mine today with all my stitching treasures. Most I've done myself but a half dozen or so were gifts either from stitchy friends or from exchanges. I need some taller pieces to round it all out. It sure felt like I had more around the house. I'll have to look some more. I just remembered - I did forget all my tiny Just Nan pieces. I'll have to gather them up and put them in also.

I was so inspired by the chair finishes that I pulled out the chaise (last year's piece) to work on this week on the way to and from work. :-) I've also been stitching away at House #8 and I'll post a photo of that tomorrow or so. The plan was to make it my only stitching project until it was done. Because of it's size, it's really to hard to work on it while I'm on the train. That's why I pulled out something else to work on. It will slow down the completion but I'm still hoping for a January finish since this house isn't one of the biggest and the last one is all words.

And to leave you today a photo of something that almost never happens. Molly and Aoife sleeping together! It was so odd that when Clancy noticed, he put in head right in to investigate.

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

one tired pug

Clancy and I had a blast at the agility seminar. I can't believe how much I learned! Clancy was a rock star and I really want to come back in July for Summer Camp. I'm already trying to find a way to make it happen. All I need is $600 and I'm there. :-) We are driving back tomorrow into a ton of snow. Hopefully things will get back to normal soon and I'll get back to stitching and quilting.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

nothing to show :-(

I can't remember the last time I didn't have a single thing to share. I spent Friday through Sunday at an agility trial and while the pugs and I had a blast and had some amazing runs we were always at least one thing short of the ribbons. bummer. I was really hoping to get that last open standard Q on Clancy so we would get out of the open level and advance to excellent. Our next trial is not for another eight weeks so we have plenty of time to work on things. :-)

Then yesterday I spent the bulk of the day driving north to Eau Claire WI to attend a two day agility handling seminar at the best place I have ever attended. This is my third trip to Ann Braue's training school and I always leave here with my head full of new things. Clancy came up with me and he is already missing Aoife dreadfully. I always forget how much he depends on her. I did toss HoHRR into my bag but I doubt if I have time to put in a stitch. The days are really full and I'm really tired by the time I get back to my hotel. I'm here until Thursday.

Thanks for all your kind wishes for my Mom. She did have surgery on the 31st and she was released the next day. She is starting to get around better every day.