Sunday, December 3, 2017

Working towards some finishes

This top has been languishing for some time now. Small rails, 1 1/2" x 3 1/2". The centre's a constant blue with a few reds thrown in, the side rails were shirting samples our Scrapbag group was given. I tidied them up and did this as a Leader and Ender project. Hubby has 4 more quilts pinned and ready for me to quilt so my work is cut out for me.
Of course now that we are in December one does start to look ahead at the coming year. Not certain yet where it will take me but I am signed up for the Fat Quarter Shop's Block of the Month. This is a fund raiser for St. Jude's Hospital. And Jen of Patterns by Jen is doing a colour block of the month. Each month will be different block featuring the colour of the month. It will happen on her blog (here). Piecefully, Joanne
Linking with Cynthia at Oh Scrap! (here)

Sunday, November 12, 2017

I made it

Last night I finished book number 50 for this year. It was a meandering tale of the history of apples. A non-fiction title, not my usual fare. This is the fifth year I have accomplished the goal and that pleases me. I am up to my neck again in pattern testing and much of it is "secret" or "top secret" sewing. So you will have to take my word for it I am sewing. Using my new machine while my regular one is at the spa for it's annual treatment. Getting a new 1/4" seam organized. etc. etc. etc.
Boys were here for the weekend and I can now say I have seen Thor, Ragnarok. It wasn't as bad as I thought it might be. Better than Bad Mom's 2 that I saw earlier this week with my neighbour. We seem to have recovered from our 16 hours without hydro. Piecefully, Joanne

Friday, November 10, 2017

Mini Charm Chocolates QAL my project

I am slowly learning a few more things. I guess as we get older it takes longer. This post was supposed to be up last night but Old Man Winter decided that was not happening and we enjoyed a 16 hour power outage. We had the "good fortune" to be a very small pocket of town out of power and it did not matter as much to us as it did to the Tim Horton's or the only gas station in town. So now on to the quilty content.
I was able to ask for whatever mini charms I wanted to make this quilt. I love the Me and My Sisters designs and since it was for a small quilt I picked Red Dot...Green Dash. Here is where I made my first error. I should have selected something totally different for my background fabric. The overall design of the project gets lost when the background is similar to or matches a couple of your charms.
On the left are my fabric choices. The scale of the design was perfect it was just the too matching background that made the final project lack punch. On the right the first step was really fast stitching your charms together in three's. I had never worked with mini charms before so I can only speak for these but they were spot on 2 1/2" square and a delight to work with.

Once the background pieces are cut the assembly is even faster. Because of my fabric choices I have a lovely quilt but I also have a quilt that does not show the design. This has been washed and is ready to donate. It will go to Project Linus, through my quilt guild, the Kincardine Sunset Quilters Guild. To see other examples of this quilt pattern hop on over to the Fat Quarter Shop's Blog (here). You will find complete instructions for a couple of different sizes for this project as well as a video to enhance the instructions and photos of some other fabric combinations that my fellow Quilt Along participants have used for their quilts. Piecefully, Joanne
Mini Charm Chocolates Quilt

Friday, October 6, 2017

The Cobblestone Quilt, a Fat Quarter Shop, Shortcut Pattern

This is my second project as a member of the Fat Quarter Shop's Quilt Along group. I had the good fortune to work with the Rainy Day fabric line by Me and My Sister Designs. It is beautiful fabric to work with. The instructions for this quilt were very simple and the quilt goes together very quickly. At approximately 63" x 80" it finishes somewhat larger than the  quilts I normally work on. I quilted it on a grid pattern using my new Janome Horizon sewing machine and a walking foot. I am still a little intimidated by the machine.
For instructions to complete your own Cobblestone Quilt be certain to visit the Fat Quarter Shop  (here)and while you are there take a look at their Clementine Charity Quilt Along for 2018. They have posted the blocks (here). This is a charity focused Quilt along where participants are asked for a voluntary donation per block with proceeds going to St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital.

There are some subtle colour differences in the blocks. You can some differences here.

While the weather was still good we set up my pinning table in the garage. The table is going back to the basement this weekend when we have company here to help with the lifting.

I used one of the striped fabrics from the fabric line for my binding. I do love a striped binding.

I hope everyone celebrating Thanksgiving this weekend has a wonderful time with food, family and some fun. Our grandson's will be here so that will keep us on our toes.

The quilt will be donated to Project Linus. Piecefully, Joanne

Friday, September 8, 2017

A Classic, Lady of the Lake Reveal

My first four Lady of the Lake blocks. As one might suspect I am going scrappy and using Kona cottons for my colours. I live on the shores of Lake Huron. This block has always called to me but with all those Half Square Triangles I was worried. I must say, my accuracy has improved with age and the "make it a tiny bit bigger" and use your Bloc_Loc ruler to square it up works really well for me. More blocks are in the works. If you are on Instagram check out the hashtag #ladyofthelakequilt to see how other quilts have interpreted this block. Thank you Fat Quarter Shop for picking this block for your Classic and Vintage series. Piecefully, Joanne

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Fat Quarter shop-Classic and Vintage Series

Earlier this summer the Fat Quarter shop opened up their Quilt Along roster to new applicants. I decided to apply and was included in the new (and returning) group.
Our first assignment was to create a block for their Classic and Vintage Series. We were to post a few sneak peaks to whet your appetite. So this is sneak peek number 1. My fabric selection. Some wonderful Kona Cottons bought as a fat quarter bundle from Mad About Patchwork a great Canadian online source for fabric.
Sneak peek number 2 is below. A few of the block components. The big reveal is now set for this Friday, September 8th. Be sure to drop by their blog (here) to learn more on Friday. Piecefully, Joanne

Friday, August 18, 2017

ChristaQuilts-Piece and Quilt with Precuts Day 2-Gridwork

Here she is. Gridwork from Christa Quilts brand new book Piece and Quilt with Precuts. Earlier this year Christa opened the blog hop to participants. As you follow the hop you will note that there is a nice mix of quilters, some you may know and some who might be new to you. This mix shows that this book can be used by everyone.

When I had the blocks stitched I laid them out first to mix up the colours and secondly to turn them every whichway. A design wall would have been helpful but the design floor worked too. In the photo on the left are all the blocks marching in the same direction. You can see from that photo that not all the blocks are constructed exactly the same.

Each design comes fully illustrated including a page with a quilting suggestion. I will admit I was worried I wouldn't be successful with the selected design so reverted to my straight lines with the walking foot design. I stitched on either side of the seams in all directions and then once on the diagonal through everything.
The quilt has now been through the wash and is ready to use.
Don't have any precuts, don't worry. I did not have a layer cake and a pack of charm squares to make this design. I used a few fat quarters and some scraps and made my own. Putting this quilt together was a lot of fun and I was happy to have an excuse to dive into my black and grey and yellow collection.
Be certain to visit ChristaQuilts (here) to see how other quilters interpreted this design. The hop has just started there will be lots of eye candy and several bloggers are offering prizes so take the time to visit them all and leave a comment if you are able. Piecefully, Joanne

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Piece and Quilt with Precuts, the Blog Hop

Coming later this week. Watch for it starting August 17th with a kick-off post from Christa. Christa opened the opportunity to participate in the blog hop last spring and I thought I would like to give it a try. There are just over 30 bloggers, most of them better known, with a wider readership than I have. There are roughly 10 quilts in the book and we could each select one to make. I picked Gridwork which is one of the earlier quilts in the book. Mine required a layer cake and a charm pack. I had to dig in my stash to create both as I did not have a layer cake. So hit the Fat Quarters and some odd pieces and cut my own. Below is a sneak peak of my top. It still needs quilting and I am hopeful I can meet the deadline. More details on "my day" which is Saturday August 19th. Piecefully, Joanne
Linking with: Cynthia at Quilting is more fun than Housework (here)

Friday, July 28, 2017

I do love a good scrap quilt

This little charmer is made of small flannel scraps. Each brick is the same size, 1 1/2" x 2 1/2". I can't seem to throw them away. I put flannel on the back and think that at approximately 32" x 40" this will make a nice cozy wheelchair quilt. I don't think it is too long.
My intervention is over and I am left with a dozen quilts needing binding and a husband who now knows how to piece batting and how to pin quilts for quilting. He wants to learn how to use my machine. So I guess that's what happens next.
For my "August intervention" I could use a little help taming the scraps. So if we can find a time that is what is on our agenda.
Last week my sister and I had a wee little vacation and part of it involved a trip down memory lane. We went to Sudbury, Ontario and visited Science North and Dynamic Earth. Sudbury's Big Nickel is found at Dynamic Earth and we think it was about 55 years ago that our Mom and Dad took us on a car trip to Sudbury. It was fun sharing the memories.
Piecefully, Joanne

Linking with Cynthia at Quiltingismorefunthanhousework (here) and with Lorna at Sew Fresh quilts (here)

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Hands to Help finale, some more scrap quilts ready to donate

Both Hands to Hands quilt tops finished, washed and ready to donate. With the ridiculously high postage rates, especially to the US, these two quilts will be donated to the Scrap Bag Quilters of Saugeen Shores for local distribution as needed. It was nice to have two holders so the quilts could go up beside each other. Each quilt is made from the same pattern and totally made from scraps, except for the backings. It is a pattern I called 9 patch bricks but as you look at it you can see many other possible organizers for the scraps. I stitched two bricks together along the long side and generally pressed towards the darker of the two bricks. Then I made 9 patch blocks using a pair of bricks as one of the patches. I altered the orientation of the bricks within the block and also rotated every other block when organizing the top. I find that making the smaller units and building to a larger unit helps me scatter the colours throughout the top more easily.
I have been trying to make more finishes rather than tops, but I am like a kid in a candy shop when I see new ideas, I just need to try it. Piecefully, Joanne

Linking up with Cynthia at Oh Scrap! (here) and Sarah at Confessions of a Fabric Addict (here) for the finale of this year's Hands to Help challenge. J

Sunday, May 14, 2017

New day, new things to do

Yesterday was a tough one but looking on the bright side I did finish my Book so I can go to Book Club and discuss it. I started the day with an email that my best friend had suffered a stroke and finished it with an email that my 100 year old Aunt had passed.
On to quilty things. I taught a Scrap Quilt workshop for my guild on Wednesday afternoon. Not sure I like an afternoon workshop but they were trying it this year. The workshop was just getting underway at nap time. Over the course of this year I have shown a different quilt that uses the brick shape at each monthly meeting. So the workshop was yet another brick friendly quilt. I had a table set up with one of each sample so participants could review the year's collection. And in my handout I provided a link to the source and some places for further exploration. Apparently the concept was popular and next year they would like me to do the same thing but with 5" squares (charms or nickels).
Today is a day for tidying up some scraps and stitching some bindings in place. Piecefully, Joanne

Linking with Cynthia at Oh Scrap! (here)

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Harper Collins Canada, PJ Party

Harper Collins, the publisher, is having a PJ party today. The original premise is that this is a day to stay in your PJ's and read all day. What a great concept, I signed up. Then the landscape starts to shift. So I am dressed, there is a load of wash in the machine, I have a small but absolutely necessary grocery list to buy and then I get to read. This is the book I would really like to finish today. I am about a third of the way through it and it is due back at the library at the end of the week. It is our next Book Club selection. Not a "new" book but a well written 16 year old book. Says a lot about culture and cross culture between India and Canada. Very detailed so not a "quick" read. Our Book Club has two criteria that must be met and the rest is flexible. The book must be available through the local library and it must be available through the CNIB as one of our members is visually impaired. This sometimes takes a newer book off the list. We are currently voting for next year's list. We are going to go for 6 Fiction and 3 Non-fiction titles next year. So this book is going beside my chair in the family room and I will read at it over the day today. Piecefully, Joanne

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Hands to Help number 1

This is scrap quilt number one for this year's version of Hands to Help. Sarah of Confessions of a Fabric Addict (here) runs this challenge annually to encourage quilters from anywhere to make and donate a quilt or more to charity. There are three designated charities on her blog but if postage costs make them prohibitive then you are encouraged to donate closer to home. I am planning to make two of these quilts. The block is a 9 patch with each patch consisting of two parallel  2 1/2" x 4 1/2" bricks. I have found that making the separate blocks and then assembling them into the larger quilt is more manageable for me. It also allows me to mix up the fabrics for a somewhat more blended scrappy look. Grandson number two (in need of a hair cut) is holding this quilt top. Piecefully, Joanne

Linking with Sarah at Confessions of a Fabric Addict
and Cynthia at Oh Scrap!

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Playing with some black and white strings

I really love the impact you can get with Black and White. I have also noted that if I am somewhat organized with my scraps I can make headway in getting them used up. So this one was on the design floor yesterday to check for "sames" beside each other. I think we are good to go and the blocks are now bagged up and ready for my mini retreat after Easter. I have also discovered over the years that sewing at a retreat for me needs to be somewhat free of decision making. I get too distracted by all the goings on around me. So I have this one and a couple of others all organized to the point of sewing the blocks and then the rows.
Piecefully, Joanne

Linking up with Cynthia at Oh Scrap! (here)

Sunday, April 2, 2017

A new idea for a scrap block, thank you stash bandit quilting

Once again playing in my scraps. this block is going to multiply into my Hands 2 Help charity quilt for 2017. I saw the original block on Diane Harris' Facebook page. She also has a new page called Stash Bandit quilting. Diane is a former/retired editor from Quiltmaker magazine. I "met" her when I started testing for the 100 blocks magazine. Looking after that publication was part of her job description. She has more ideas for the windmill block than I could possibly imagine. She had one similar to this shown yesterday and the minute I saw it I knew this one was for me. I have a container with blue/green/purple bricks that are 1 1/2" x 2 1/2", I shorted through the container and pulled out some very light bricks. I needed 4 per block. The rest of the block is scrappy and I was ready to roll.
I have been doing a lot of pattern testing over the last couple of months and most of that is secret sewing. I have also discovered Instagram and it is so good for my just do this now and it is done mentality. I need to sit down and write more. Piecefully, Joanne
Linking up with Cynthia at Oh Scrap! (here)

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Totally Triangle Quiltalong

Every year Quilt alongs come and quilt alongs go. I look at them and think oh that would be fun or that looks interesting. Well this year I signed on for the Totally Triangle Quilt along. You need to buy the pattern for this quilt along and it is available through Craftsy. I cannot tell you just how much fun I am having making these different triangles. I decided to go with a constant Kona Bone for my background and then use scraps for the colour. These are my first six triangles and they are not going to be set like this for the final project, they just wanted to play together for their photo op.
It is not too late to join the fun. Sheila Christenson, also known as the Mystery Quilter has written the pattern. She lives in New Zealand and owns a quilt shop there. Check out her web site. (here)
Piecefully, Joanne

Linking with Cynthia for Oh Scrap! (here)

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Looking forward to Quilt Guild today

Today is Quilt Guild in Kincardine and since the roads were bad last month and we didn't get there I am really looking forward to today. It is the anniversary meeting. I did not live in this part of the province when the guild was formed so do not know many of the people who started the group but I am certainly glad they did.
As part of the program today there is going to be a flimsy parade. Now that is something I could buy into. I have decided to take the flimsy shown here. It is a hexagon sampler I did as a test for Teresa Down Under back in the fall. she has it for sale now as a pattern. It was a lot of fun to put together and totally done from my scrap buckets. Over the summer we did some organizing and the purples and the greens did not get finished so they are each in a bucket. They seem to fluff up when you use something from the bucket as the total amount of fabric does not appear to be reduced.
Piecefully, Joanne

Linking up with Lorna of Sew Fresh Quilts for  Let's Be Sewcial (here)

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Serendipity, an occasion when the scraps suit a quilt perfectly

I felt this quilt was a good case of serendipity. I had one of those storage containers and had been putting some left over pieces in it as the main part of their yardage was used. Along came a pattern test for Train Station and these scraps got used up. The "tracks" were yardage but the rest were some bits and pieces. I love the fresh colours and how well the pieces from different past projects played well together. The pattern as I said is called Train Station and was created by two (new to me) designers from Nova Scotia. My version is the baby size at 38" square. There are three sizes to the pattern. Their label is called BriarHill designs. They have published a few quilt patterns and have some absolutely beautiful watercolor designs. The crosses were paper pieced, the tracks and the rest of the design was done with regular piecing.
The weather in our neck of the woods has been good for staying inside and spending time with your sewing machine. Piecefully, Joanne

Linking up with Cynthia at Oh, Scrap! (here)

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Playing with strings

I have been playing with some black with white and white with black strings in between other tasks. I 24 of these blocks done and the second 24 are well on their way. I do however wonder how the bag full I started with is still essentially full.I have really been doing a lot of quilt pattern testing and that requires for the most part nothing be said or shown until the pattern is released. So the cone of silence will remain in place.
Last year at the end of the year I looked back at my favourite book for the year. I did look over my "books read" for 2016 and find that I do not have a favourite. I enjoyed many of them and some were Book Club reads that I managed to finish. I have signed up for Harper Collins 50 Book Pledge again this year. I find it a fantastic way to keep track of books read and authors enjoyed. This is my 4th or 5th year and you can look back over the previous year's book shelves if you need to find something.
The first sewing task this morning is some mending. Not glamorous but necessary. Then back to my testing. Linking up with Cynthia for Oh Scrap! at Quilting is More Fun than Housework (here) Piecefully, Joanne

Thursday, January 5, 2017

A New Year a New Quilt Pattern Test

After a short little break over the Christmas holidays I have started back testing. Lisa over at Counted Quilts has asked me to test a few of her patterns. I asked for "boy" ones so I could beef up my boy donations. She has all kinds of interesting quilts on her web site (here). She has tested all her patterns herself and wanted a new set of eyes to review them. The patterns come in three sizes; a wall hanging, a nap size quilt and a twin quilt. I have done a couple in the nap size and they turn out exactly as described. That of course is always nice for the tester. It is also nice to have a test that you can show.
We have been "stuck" in the house due to blowing snow and a closed highway so it has been doubly good to have new things to work with. Piecefully, Joanne