Thursday, July 31, 2014

My bed of roses

This quilt has been back from my long arm quilter, Terry Finnerty, for a couple of weeks, patiently waiting for me to put on the binding and today was the lucky day! I have my own bed of roses!

The fabrics in both quilts are from two collections of Urban Chiks, one called Sweet, the other called Swell. That giant rose and polka dot border print is my favorite piece of both collections. Doesn't that clamshell quilting really jazz up this quilt? LOVE it!

This quilt will reside at the foot of my bed, the perfect addition to the full size bed quilt I made with these fabrics. Such a sweet and summery look!

I'm very happy with the gingham check binding.

All that great squishy texture - love it!

Why did I wait so long to get the binding on?   Finished is so much better!

happy stitching-
carol fun

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Okay, now this is so much better on WIP Wednesday

Oh yes this is sooooooo much better than my previous choice of vertigo inducing sashing for this quilt. If you want to take a chance and view that fabric selection click here... but I warn you it is busy busy BAD!!!

And I want to thank all of you that looked at that hot mess on my design wall on Monday and either found something nice to say or didn't leave a comment as to how bad it was!  I know you wanted to, but you were too polite. You were obviously raised well! Perhaps a few former Catholic school girls among you? (Yes I am one too!   I was not one of the nuns' success stories - LOL!)

The pattern is Topiary Tiles, a free download from Craftsy you can find here. The fabric collection is a brand new line by Momo called Avant Garden. You can see it here. It has a retro hippie chick 70's vibe in my opinion and I love it. Reminds me of those colors - avocado green ,harvest gold, coppertone - the colors my mom painted our home during that decade. I think that's where my love of color began. Our house was filled with color. My mom let my brother and I pick the colors for our rooms - his was a deep blue green and mine...I know this will SHOCK you was YELLOW, a lovely BRIGHT yellow. It was fun growing up in a house with all that color and and it was a great antidote to the school uniforms I wore for 12 years - a dreary parade of washed out blue and gray. So happy I wasn't severely traumatized by those Catholic school uniforms... oh wait, maybe I was and my color sense is just a rebellion against gray. LOL! Yep, I'm crazy!

Anyway, that yellow sashing is a Moda Grunge, more goldy than it shows in some of the pictures. The prints in this line are great -some large scale and some small.

Big cherry trees...

Big cherry flowers...

Happy flowers and some more cherries peeking in on the side...

Cute lollipop flowers...

I haven't decided what to do about the cornerstones but I might try something is a scrappy quarter square triangle. Gotta play with that idea.

I'm linking up today with Freshly Pieced. Go over and see what everyone is up to, always lots of inspiration.

happy stitching-
carol fun

Monday, July 28, 2014

Couldn't resist this fabric on Design Wall Monday

I've had my eye on this Moda collection for quite a while, anxiously awaiting its arrival. And last week my patience was rewarded when I snagged a pack of fat eights of Avant Garden by Momo. You can see the whole collection here.

I was looking at patterns to find one that would show off these prints that have a 70's retro hippie vibe, and then I came across this pattern, Topiary Tiles. It is free and you can find it here on Craftsy.

I don't know a lot about the Japanese designer of this line, Momo, except for this little blurb on Moda's website.

As a child growing up in Japan MoMo often found herself retreating into to caverns of her imagination. It was only natural for this talented young artist to eventually grace the world of graphic design. As she set out to redecorate the world with her patterns, colorful fantasies and childhood musings spilled out in a Technicolor landscape filled with imaginary places and graphic interpretations of the world in her head. MoMo’s designs are bold and colorful with a flare for the surreal, her feet firmly planted on the ground and her head in the clouds.

This is the second of her collections that I have admired. The first was called Wonderland and some of the fabrics in this new line also appeared in that collection. The little floral that I've got as sashing is in both collections. I'm not certain I'm going to use it. I may go with a Grunge fabric. Ummmm... the more I look at this photo the more I'm pretty sure I'm going to use some other fabric for the sashing. It is really busy busy busy, and you know I like busy busy busy most of the time, but maybe not for this quilt. Also I'm not committed to using that green as the corner stones but I had a piece of it that was big enough to cut a couple so I'm trying it out. Sheesh, okay just ignore everything here except for the blocks!

At the moment this is my choice for a border. LOVE those GIANT polka dot. It comes in a pink colorway too and it is pretty. It is nice to have such great fabrics to choose from.

I think a trip to my favorite quilt store, Fabric Shack, would be a good way to spend my Monday afternoon. Hope you have a great day too!

happy stitching-
carol fun

Friday, July 25, 2014

I excell at the creation of UFOs...yes I do!

It has been a productive week in knitting department and I have excelled in the creation of new UFOs. As a further riff on my post of July 11 explaining my philosophy of UFO's, it is clear that you can't have UFO's to revisit, and get that feeling of satisfaction that you are almost done with a project, unless you create it to begin with, right? Oh I am brilliant - LOL!

Anyway I started out by completing this pair of vanilla socks done in Crystal Palace Sausalito, colorway 8101. You can find it here.

So I cast on another pair of socks. This is a free pattern called Sunday Swing and you can find it here. The yarn is Deborah Norville Serenity in the Hot Lime colorway. I got it at either Joann's or Michael's.

And I felt that I needed to have another pair of vanilla socks cast on to keep with me when I'm out and about. Do you knit in public? I knit EVERYWHERE I go. I knit when I'm waiting to pick up my son, I knit when I'm sitting in a drive thru line in the car, I knit when I'm waiting for my food to come at a restaurant, I knit when I'm waiting for a concert to begin and at intermission, I knit when I'm standing in line where ever I may be. And this kind of knitting requires a non-thinking pattern so stockinette it is! The yarn for this one is a DROPS Fabel colorway 677p. You can find it here.

And then there was this Noro Silk Garden Sock Yarn that crossed my path last weekend. I LOVE the color changes in a Nor0 yarn,they are gorgeous. Yet somehow I forget how I HATE knitting with Noro until I purchase the yarn and cast it on. My mind is going! I would never use this stuff for socks - it is thick, it is thin and then all of a sudden you'll get a knot and the colorway jumps without rhyme or reason. Sheesh - it must give off some sort of fumes that clouds your judgement till you get it home. That's my story and I'm sticking to it!

Anyway this is colorway S349 and it just screams Fall doesn't it? I'm knitting the shawl pattern Pamuya. You can see it here.

It has some lovely stitch patterns interspersed with stockinette and garter bands. So far a very easy pattern to follow and it gives you the stitch count for every row. I like that, it makes it harder to get too far off.

Soooooo, one project done and three started. I am a UFO creating machine! LOL

have a great weekend-
happy knitting!

carol fun

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Finished ... but on the fence

I finished my Batik Paint Chips quilt and hung it in my living room. As you probably remember this one is based on the cover quilt of Karla Alexander's book Stack, Shuffle and Slide.

I have run through several phases in this construction of this quilt - I like it, I don't like it, I kinda like it, oooohhh I LIKE it and now I'm at the "I'm not sure what I think of it" phase. It is very different than most of my quilts. Not as bright in color, not traditional. I don't see myself as a modern quilter or an art quilter and I think I've made a modern art quilt - hmmmmm.

I quilted this one myself and about 2 hours in I wished I had given it to my long arm quilter. I completely positive that I don't like to machine quilt. I can do it, I just don't want to. I'd much rather piece. I quilted a wavy rectangular grid pattern using a variegated thread. If you click on the picture below you can see it a bit clearer.

And here is a view from the back side.

It could probably benefit from more quilting but I just don't have it in me at the moment.

This is my view of the quilt from my stitching chair.

It is growing on me. I'm spending more time on the "I like it" side of the fence than I was yesterday.

Happy stitching-
carol fun

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Playing with Paper

I decided to put away the 4th of July decor and freshen up my decorating for the rest of the summer. I really liked the patriotic banner I had made and the bookcase looked naked without it so I decided to play with paper and make a summer-y one.

Now this is a totally free banner because I have had this paper in my stash for quite some time, and if you can't remember what you paid for it, it's free, right?  It is a line from K & Company by Brenda Walton called Olivia Rose. So much wonderfulness - birds, and sewing stuff and vintage patterns - big sigh!!!

I cut the banner shapes with die from PaperTreyInk you can see it here. And I added a different topper on each banner shape with this die which you can see here.

This collection of papers from Brenda Walton had extra accessory packs you could buy (which of course I did!) and they included little bits and bobs like extra trees and birds.

banners and words of inspiration - and I was inspired! LOL

I stamped the word "happy" on this one and while my theme was birds I could not resist including some sewing stuff!

I changed out the plates and broke out my sunflower and GIANT leaf platter (hmmm... it seems like my love of GIANT mutant fruit in cross stitch pieces extends to other GIANT mutant pieces of nature.)

The sampler is an old one from Drawn Threads called "For the Birds". I love how the alphabet wraps around and forms the border. Have you seen some of the new stuff from Drawn Thread? You can view them here. I've done a couple of her designs and a couple are in their dormant UFO stage. I may have to wake them up soon.

happy stitching-
carol fun

Sunday, July 20, 2014

One Finish and Two Starts for Slow Stitching Sunday

I have bounced around from project to project this week - not that it is really any different any week, now that I think of it - but I did find some time to concentrate on a bit of cross stitching.

First I finished BBD Forget-Me-Not. A lovely little piece with such pretty blue flosses.

I thought about starting another one of of the Loose Feathers Abecedarian series, and while I was rummaging through my stash looking at all my choices, this little bit of fabric and a ratty skein of floss fell out of a box.

I also discovered a graph I had printed off of Pinterest eons ago and it was serendipity. There is still a bit to stitch on this one and  I want to finish this as a small. I'm thinking a collection of birds would be lovely.

And while I was looking at all the BBD stash I had I rediscovered this graph. OH how I LOVE this one! Look at that BIG blue house and that mutant bowl of fruit and that  GREAT pumpkin! Simply irresistible!

I got this far on Friday night. I'm thinking that the alternate squares for the roof would look great in a diagonal satin stitch - a nice bit of extra texture.

I like how the shutters have that extra little stitch for the hinge and I can't wait to break out the blue floss. You know I have a weakness for stitching yellow houses but blue house are a close second. Every house I've ever owned up to the one I live in now have been blue to one degree or another. I've had houses with blue shutters and two houses that were ALL blue. One was a little Tudor style house that was painted blue with yellow and red accents when it was purchased. Could have been a cute gingerbread color scheme but it hadn't been a good choice of colors. Eventually it was repainted in a more traditional Tudor color palette which was enthusiastically received by the neighbors. And in California I lived in a stucco house. Most of the houses were painted shades of cream with yellow or peach undertones - very classy. However my house was painted blue and not a pretty shade either - blue to the gray side - yuck. I didn't live there long enough make it worthwhile to repaint it but the next residents did repaint. I'm sure the neighbors were happy about that too.

Well our lovely cool weather is being replaced by the typical hot and humid Midwest summer. It was so nice while it lasted.

Hope you have a great week!
happy stitching-
carol fun

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

I got more mail for WIP Wednesday

Happy middle of the week! On Monday I showed the beginning of this quilt and speculated that it needed to be a bit bigger... and today it is! I added two rows to the width and two rows to the length. I like the proportions better this way.

This is from the Post Card QAL on A Quilter's Table blog. You can find the instructions here. It is a super simple sew. I've spent more time folding and re-folding fabric than I have spent sewing. I got all the "fronts" of the postcards cut and arranged and I'm happy with the flow of the color. They are all Kaffe Fasset, Brandon Mably or Philip Jacobs.

I LOVE text fabrics - it goes along with my love of samplers. And some of the postcards talk to me. See the one that says "need"? And the two above it with the script writing and the math equations?

And the one that tells me "sew" and reminds me I need a new "spool" of thread - I told you the fabric talks to me - LOL!!

All I need to do is sew the rows together and this one is off the the long arm quilter. Oh go check this out on Missouri Star's Facebook page - it made me laugh!

I'm linking up with Freshly Pieced WIP Wednesday. Lots of eye candy there!

happy stitching-
carol fun

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

New Stuff around the House

It is a glorious day here in southwestern Ohio. The "Polar Vortex" is paying us a visit and it is sunny and low 70's. Oh it could stay like this for a long long time, but the forecast says just a couple of days. I'm airing out my house and enjoying a lovely breeze.

Well there are a couple of new things here. First, have you noticed that there are new blogs listed on my Blog List? Several of my friends told me that they visit the blogs that are posted on the list but they are always looking for new ones. Now in my Bloglovin'/Feedly/Blogger accounts I follow about 500 blogs on lots of different subjects. I try to keep the ones on the blog to the crafty ones. I've been thinking about updating the list for a while but over the weekend the decision was made for me when I tried to delete on duplicate listing and instead I deleted the entire Blog List - whoosh! poof! GONE GONE GONE!!! arrrrrggggghhhhh!!!! It took me a couple of hours to recreate the list and while I was at it I added some new ones. There are over 200 listed and the latest updates appear at the top of the list. If there is a blog I don't have listed and you'd like to see it on this list let me know and I will add it. I have gotten very adept at adding, deleting is still a problem - LOL!

And then these sandals appeared on my front porch. Aren't they cute? A kinda hippie chick vibe!

I'd been have a bit of heel pain - plantar fasciitis - and knew some Birkenstocks would help. I went shopping online and was considering a navy suede pair when these appeared and I was powerless to resist. You can find them here at Zappos! Oh, they also come in a purple-y paisley. Not trying to enable,just sharing!

I've done a little gardening around the house too. These pots sit on my front porch steps.

I was totally smitten with this purple leaf plant. I think it is called Persian Shield. My future DIL bought one at a local garden center and I popped over and snagged a couple. The marigolds are even more orange in real life than in the picture and the pots have a bit of a Halloween vibe. Fingers crossed that they last that long!

Hope you are having a wonderful day!
happy stitching-
carol fun

Monday, July 14, 2014

Postcards from Kaffe, Brandon, Philip and Mary

Again, another quilt has appeared on my design wall that was no where on my list of things I need to do... I really don't know how this happens..oh yeah, I do know... I saw something shiny and I HAD to make it RIGHT NOW! Look a squirrel! But such a colorful squirrel, don'tcha think?

This is my start on the Postcard QAL I found on the blog A Quilter's Table. You can find the directions here... and the Flickr group is here. Most people are making smaller versions but you know how hard that is for me to do. It took no time at all to put together the postcard blocks. I think I have about a dozen different text prints along with the black/white polka dot divider. In looking at the picture I can see where I need to rearrange a couple of the postcards. All of the prints are from Kaffe Fassett, Brandon Mably and Philip Jacobs - love their stuff!

As I was admiring this on my wall last night it occurred to me that it would be even better if I made it a little bit bigger - add two rows across and two more down. It would be almost square then and I really like square quilts. Hmmm... lets see I would need 22 more of each block. I still have all the Kaffe, Brandon, Philip fabric out on my cutting table...I think it is gonna happen -LOL!

Oh you may be wondering who is the Mary I referred to in the title of this post. Well, it is Mary Engelbreit. I think this is my favorite postcard!

Happy stitching-
carol fun

Friday, July 11, 2014

My philosophy of UFO's

I adhere to my own philosophy that it is vitally important that we all have UFOs- unfinished objects, WIPs - works in progress, Phds - projects half done. I practice what I preach and have many many many UFOs and I no longer feel any guilt about them. Why? Because when I rediscover a UFO and pick up that project again, I am already partially or sometime almost completely finished with it at that moment of rediscovery. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel and I charge headlong into that bright spot and crash into the oncoming train -ooops - maybe not the metaphor I was going for - LOL! What I mean is I am energized to finish and that energy has been strong the last three weeks where sock knitting was concerned. (Don't ask about the quilt tops or cross stitch - they are in their dormant phase of being UFO's... very important for their development.)

To begin, this pair is done! Yarn is Opal Rendezvous, an old discontinued collection. I love that the stripes are lots of different widths. I wish Opal would make a new collection like this.

Next, you may want to don your sunglasses. This is Regia Fluoromania. You can purchase it here if you have a wish to sear your eyeballs - LOL! I'm planning on getting another colorway of this yarn.

I love this spot where you get the bits of orange all broken up.

And three weeks ago I showed this sock in its unfinished state, another Regia yarn, Kaffe Fassett line using the Carolina pattern which is free here on Ravelry.

So what to knit next? Should I cast on the second sock for that Kaffe one I just finished? Or I could cast on the mate for this one I completed a while ago, Blue Moon Socks that Rock in that same Carolina pattern.

Decisions, decisions, decisions. I know I'll start a new totally different pair of socks like this one!

Isn't this wonderful yarn? It is a new to me yarn Sausalito by Crystal Palace. You can see it here, lots of colorways. This is colorway 8101. It is 80% wool/20% nylon and I like a bit of nylon in my socks. I LOVE how the colors shade in this sock with no abrupt changes. Now it isn't the easiest of yarns to knit with. It has 2 plys, each a different color, which gives it a tweedy look, but they aren't tightly plied together and it gets splitty easily. It annoyed me when I first started knitting it, but after seeing the colors develop I am willing to put up with that bit of nuisance for these results. In fact, I'm so willing to put up with it that I already cast on the 2nd sock and ordered yarn for two more pairs.

So go forth, knit, sew, crochet, quilt - don't feel guilty over the UFOs - their time will come!  LOL - now I'm a preacher. Oh makes me think of a favorite line from a local radio guy Gary Burbank. He did a character called the  Right Reverend Deuteronomy Skaggs who would preach, "Don't make me holler, don't make me shout, turn those pockets inside out!!" and "reach in those jeans, and pull out those greens."  Hey, at least I'm not asking for your money !

Happy knitting-
carol fun

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Batik Paint Chips on WIP Wednesday

I finally got some time in behind my sewing machine and I put together the blocks for my 2nd Paint Chips quilt. I'm loving these batiks!

Again I started with the pattern on the cover of  the Karla Alexander book, Stack, Shuffle and Slide - here it is on Amazon. And again I added lots more piecing, and inserts, and bits and bobs.

This time I even added little pieces to the sashing strips.

Next it needs a narrow plain background border and then I'm going to piece the accent border before finishing it off with a wide background border. My plan is to machine quilt this one myself in a grid pattern that looks like an uneven plaid. I can do it all with my walking foot and that's the kind of machine quilting I do best.

I'm linking up with Freshly Pieced for WIP Wednesday.

Hope your week is going fine - mine seems to be moving quickly - again!

Happy stitching-

carol fun