Tuesday, August 14, 2012

August FMQ sampler and a finish

It's that time again!  I did a quick practice after drawing this design, and also printing out Wendy Sheppard's pictures so I could practice tracing the jester hats.  Finger tracing over her drawing did help.  Drawing my own and stitching my own need more work.  The design is fun, though, and gives a great interest and dimension to the quilt.  I do have plans to use this design on a few mug-rugs and place mats.  They will be a great size to practice on, and I could use some in my house. 

So, here's my practice. 

The piece of muslin I picked wasn't very large, but it did give me some practice moving the design around, and I loved adding the center part.  Some of those look great, and others need work.  But practice is good.

After I did that practice, I finally worked on a table runner.  I am really trying to practice different FMQ skills with every piece I do.  This one has a loopy center in the pieced blocks, and feathers in the border.  I am getting better at them, especially the left side.  The right still needs practice, lol.  It's helping, though. 
Both items used Aurifil 50wt cotton thread, and Warm & Natural batting. 

I also baked some brownies today.  I really needed something chocolate!  These are just decadent!
And there is a possible romance in the works, too.  We'll see what develops with that.  We met on Eharmony, and are enjoying getting to know each other.  I named this runner New Romance, partly because of him, and partly because the Benartex fabrics were called Flower Market 2 Romatic. 

Serendipity, I think.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

What should I do??

Here's the latest on the Tossed 9 patch made with A Breath of Avignon by Moda. 

The main part is done.  Now to add the borders.  I have 1 yard of the jacobean style print, and 2 3/4 yds of the blue floral.  I want to add 3 borders, since I don't think the two blues should be next to each other.  I'm looking for a red (solid, pindot or marble/textured) or the yellow. 
I think I prefer the red, but this piece I have isn't the right shade.  The red in the collection is called Rouge, and it's a little more pink than the red solid I have.  They won't be next to each other, but...not sure I want to mix it in.  The red I have isn't Moda.  I'm not usually a snob when it comes to mixing brands, but I really want a better match.

Here's another choice. 

The cream is the same as the little squares.  Too blah??

The two squares are left from the charm pack.  They both have a little Fleur-de-lis on them.  I wish I could find the red with cream, would settle for the cream with red (sample square) and you can see the difference in the yellow square and the yellow solid.  The yellow solid won't work, since it's a poly/cotton blend.  I looked online and found a cream and yellow print (like that cream/blue above the stripe block, next to the 1st border).  I haven't found the reds. 

So what do you think? The first border will be about 5", and the last will be larger.  I do need some of that for binding.  Help me pick Border # 2 and maybe find the fabric??  One of the reds??  I'll only need about 1 yard, and the border will be maybe 3 inches. 


Friday, August 10, 2012

The latest news

Hi!  I won another little contest!  Moda's Blog, The Cutting Table had a contest, and was I surprised when I saw this as the next post!

I won a Sure Guide needle threader and a Sewline glue stick!  I've wanted to try the needle threader.  As some of you know, I have a corneal disease called Keratoconus.  It's basically a loose cornea, instead of a nice tight one that sticks to your eyeball.  The main symptom is shadow vision, double letters, depth perception problems, sensitivity to bright lights, and more.  My biggest challenge is seeing the eye of a needle.  I see two or three eyes, instead of one, so picking the right "one" is often difficult, especially when I'm tired.  Those little wire threaders work okay but I still seldom get the thread (looks frayed even when it's not) and the needle to cooperate.  I do wear hard contacts, which help push the cornea where it belongs, but close work is still difficult, even with magnifiers.  I've been told I need a cornea transplant on my left eye. 

So, a little thing like a threader that makes the thread and needle eye meet without me seeing it, is a wonderful treat.  I have built in threaders on my machine and serger, (wish I had it on the Featherweight!) so I only have to struggle with hand sewing. 

Enter this adorable little gadget!  A perfect prize for me!  I'm so pleased with it!  You insert the needle in the slot in the pink tip, making sure the needle eye is up/down.  Push the pink lever to check if it's correct (gently!) and adjust if needed.  Drop your thread in that little V slot, and push the pink button again, and TADAA!!  Threaded needle.  You just pull it out!  Under that area is a little thread cutter.  And that pink tip slides back in to protect it and the cutter when not in use.  The square bottom has a magnet for picking up needles, and, it's also a needle case!  I'm thrilled.  I haven't tried the glue yet, but I'm looking forward to it.  I LOVE my Sewline pencils, too.  I actually have 3, black and white which I purchased, and a yellow which I won from another blog. 

So, Moda, and Sarah, thanks so much for giving me something that will make my life a little easier.  If you can't tell, I love Moda fabrics too.  The squares you see below the Aurifil thread and Sewline tools is A Breath of Avignon.  I'm working on a Tossed 9 patch quilt from Quilt In A Day. 

This is a picture of the first step in the quilt.  Simple 9 patch blocks, with a cream center, using 5" charm squares. 

This is today's progress.
I have 11 more blocks to do, then I need to play with layouts and figure the borders.  I have one idea, but I'm looking for a coordinating fabric.  I have the blue with large flower clusters (bottom left above the red) and another blue with larger designs, so I'm thinking I need a red to separate them, or yellow.  I do have more of the cream, but I think I want more color between the two blues. 

If you are wondering about the table runner on the right, it's pretty florals.  I'll be pin basting and quilting that soon.  Watch for both items to be finished soon. 

I'm going to go thread some more needles.  It's fun!  Now that I can do it without frustration, anyway!

For more info about Keratoconus, see http://www.nkcf.org/.  Even if you don't read the info, the heading shows what I see even with correction. 

Thanks for visiting.