Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Only a Few Hours Left: OMG!

Edited to join the March OMG goal setting. But you might have seen this post before. 

The February heat wave has messed up my plans (because I only wanted to be outside and kind of forgot I was supposed to be sewing) but I did finish my OMG with only a few hours to spare. Phew!! 

The goal was to have all the missing blocks of the Westering Women BOM done. 

TA-DAaaaaahhhh!
Sorry for the shadowy indoor photo but it is already too dark for an outside photo-shoot
I wonder if you can imagine how happy I am that it is done? Such a weight off my shoulder.  :^D

The second goal was to have all the blocks for the I-Spy quilt made. 

TA-DAaaaaahhhh!
Eight star blocks and 


eight regular 9-Patch blocks. I was running low on fun fabric for this one so I inserted some flannel. I have as many fun prints in flannel as I do in cotton. It proved to be hazardous as my flannel scraps are up there. 

And everything came tumbling down when I tried to take the box down. Actually, it was kind of fun to have a shower of soft flannel scraps pouring down on me, lol. On the other hand, the box was not as nice! Now I just want to continue to play with the flannel. I should at least get this more organised but my cotton scraps take the entire room and I don't know where else to store the flannel. The bigger pieces are in bins but there's no room in those for the scraps. What's a girl to do? Sew it up! :^D


Anywho!
For my March OMG, what will I do? My intention, last January, was to make the Westering Women in February and finish the quilt in March. But after September, I really need a break from this quilt before I fall out of love. 
Never would have thought that September is a troublemaker. 

So instead, I'll assemble the I-Spy quilt and baste it. That's all. I mean, the weather is nice and I want to be outside so just a little challenge for March. 


Until next time ... breathe in, touch flannel, breathe out, repeat. 

;^)

Joining in the linky party at Elm's Street Quilts.  


Monday, 27 February 2017

A Lucky Streak


I had a lucky streak a while back and I want to take a few minutes to say Thank You to two very generous ladies. And of course, I also want to share with you all what I won. 


First, from Sarah Craig (Confessions of a Fabric Addict) I won a bundle of 18 Fat Quarters. A very pink bundle of FQs with lots and lots of beautiful roses. 

Some of the fabric have cherry prints. I love cherries.  Thank you so much Sarah. Don't know what I will make with these beautiful prints but it will definitively be a quilt for ME. Happy dance all around the bundle for awhile ... then I calmed down. :^D


Then, I won a giveaway that Ruth had on her blog (Country Log Cabin). The prize was 2 meters of any fabric I wanted from her Etsy store. Wow! I get to pick? Oooohhh! That was hard. 



I finally decided on these lovelies. 

Neutral because we never have enough neutrals, right? A piece of blue too because, hey! it's blue! Then I went for a meter of the red one to use as background in the 150 Canadian Women quilt I want to make (but haven't started yet).  But Ruth had a surprise for me, beside that lovely card. 

In the folds of the fabric, she hid a panel of labels. How sweet and generous! 
Thank you so much Ruth. I am so happy with my fabrics. 

And that was my retail therapy for February. 



Until next time ... I have fabric on my mind. 

;^)




  

Monday, 20 February 2017

The best of plans can change



My February OMG is to make all the blocks for an I-Spy quilt and to make the missing Westering Women blocks.  Although I am trying my best to stay on track, I found myself derailing this weekend.  The reason? The weather! 

It is so nice and sunny, I can't stay in the basement sewing. I am almost tempted to bring my sewing machine outside. I would have to sew with my sunglasses on because it is THAT bright out there. Unfortunately, my sunglasses only have the "far away" prescription and not the "reading" one. So I can't sew with them. Darn! 

Anywho! I did manage to finish the log cabin blocks for Cécile QAL. I will dedicate a post entirely to them later. 

While sewing the log cabin, I did finish some of the Westering Women blocks. 



July and August, which you have already seen, and  

October (on top), November and December with a snowy sky look.  As you can see September is still missing. It got me cursing! 



 As sewing in-set seams or Y seams, is not my forte, my first attempt was wonky. Then I thought it needed to have the seam allowances added to the pattern because the units were too small to finish at 12 inches. So, I thought if I have to start over, might as well do it in the English Paper Piecing style. Did one (almost) (at left) before I realized that the pattern also calls for a plain piece in between the sage buds, like the Bear Paws (November) in the last picture.  (!@$$%*@#$!!) (Sorry!)  Starting over again!! I saw a few ... okay, many Westering Women quilts finished. I saw one that had 11 blocks. Guess which block was missing?  I can sooo relate!! Anywho! Wasn't born a quitter but a kicker, so on we go! (Did my little exasperation dance but I am fine now. I can calmly carry on.)  :^D

All the while, my leader / ender was the I-Spy quilt. Did more cutting than sewing on this one. 


It is time consuming to get the fabric out, cut ONE five inches square and put the fabric back on the shelf. Start again with next fabric. Once I get to just sewing it, it will surely go pretty fast ... I hope so because February is almost over. Yikes!  

The cherry on top of all this is that I am back at work. Since it is a progressive return to work, I still have some time to sew. I'm tired and happy! But it sure feels good to be back at work.  :^D 

Okay, got to go. My sunglasses are calling me. 

Until next time ... I'll be looking up because it is brighter up there. 


;^)

Joining Beth at Love Laugh Quilt for Monday Making



Sunday, 12 February 2017

Singing the Y-Seam Blues

Part of my OMG is to finish the blocks of Westering Women (by Barbara Brackman). Well, the ladies have a broken wheel on one of the wagons and they are singing the Y-seam Blues with me!

I was real proud of my August block Chimney Rock.

Armed with more confidence, I set to assemble September's block which is Sage bud. More Y-seams then I dare to count. But one at a time is all I can sew, right? It started pretty good actually.


The first seam with the yellow fabric was very good and the next one acceptable.


Same with this unit.


The more I added, the better it looked.


Then the fourth unit is ... to be unstitched.  It won't lay flat at all. It warps. ARGH!! So I restitched, and unstitched, and re-restitched and ... I examined the others, trying to find what I was doing differently. During the examination, I realized something.  The block is to finish at 12.5 inches so each unit has to be 6.5, right? Well, they are not! WHAT???

I took out the template (sorry but it is misbehaving today) and examined it a bit.
I copied this template as is and started to sew. It doesn't say "add seam allowances" so I didn't add ANY seam allowances. It makes no sense, the units are too small.  I went back to Barbara's blog and she does say it in the post : must add seam allowances. (paste huge sigh of discouragement here) THAT's what happen when you do a BOM block months later. You forget little important details! Angry at myself for wasting fabric, time and patience but it will past.

So if I am to start all these units over AGAIN, where I might end up making another big mess of the last y-seam, I might as well EPP it!! (EPP=English Paper Piecing)

Got some old Christmas cards some businesses sent to the office and drew the templates. Adding the seam allowances as I cut the fabrics.

This evening, I will keeping Kathy company, watching Mercy Street and Victoria on PBS while we both slow stitch, each on our own project.

To make sure my templates are the right size, I have started to assemble one.

Ooohhh! Can't wait for the supper's dishes to be done. It's going to be so much fun! Come and join us. Pick a needle and a project, and come share it with us. You can find Kathy right here. 


Until next time ... the Westering Women are getting that wheel fix real good!

;^)










Saturday, 11 February 2017

My Own Rainbow Scrap Challenge's Challenge

(Hope the title makes sense to you, if not, blame my French roots. :^D )

Back in January I forgot to show you the fabrics I decided to use in my RSC2017.

Last year, in an effort to use up some older fabrics from my stash, I had picked a stars on white fabric and a black M&M fabric. I was very happy with the end result.

Peace and Plenty is assembled and awaits border(s?). Ideas are still brewing for this one.


With such a good outcome last year, I decided to do it again this year. These are the fabrics I will be using. I might have to add one or two during the year. We'll see.

The "wannabe plaid" in blue is from 18 years ago or so. I did a short and shirt ensemble for my oldest son when he was 3 or 4 years old. Still have the shirt fabric too but not enough to use in such a challenge. Since it is 100% cotton, it's in!

The dark "fugly" (as Dasha calls them), at the forefront, came from a scrap bag bought in a store a while back. I don't have a lot but enough for a few blocks. The red and green fabric and the cherry one have been in the stash so long I don't remember where they came from. It's time for them to go too. All in RSC#3. I know they don't go together very nicely but if my plan works like in my mind (fingers crossed), they will play nice in the end. The solid yellow in the background is the constant in the RSC#3.

The grey piece is the background fabric for my RSC#2.


Now this being said, lets move on to this past week when I worked on February's color which is
Sea Green. 

RSC#1 Hole in the Barn Door

I don't have a solid Sea Green or anything that could qualify for such a description so I opted for one which almost read solid.


RSC#2 Hourglass won't sparkle with Aqua, Turquoise and the likes as I need some specific colors for this quilt. Sorry.


RSC#3 Buckwheat
I have to admit the fugly one looks darn good here.


And somehow, a RSC#4 was started without my consent. lol. (Yeah! Sure! Don't we all know how it starts??!!)  It will be a long term quilt as I won't do all the pieces needed this year. Here's what I got done in purple.
This is the extend of my purple stash. Each and every one of my purple fabric is represented here. Will have to buy more ... some day. :^D  I am hunting down the sea green fabric to add to these.

Earlier this morning, I manage to find Aqua and Sea-foam green who were happy to participate in this new quilt.


There! Now that I am all organized, the RSC 2017, in four chapters, will be a breeze. (So she says, lol!)

Until next time ... stitch, stitch, stitch away.


;^)

Joining
Sarah at Confessions of a Fabric Addict
Angie at A Quilting Reader's Garden
Myra at Busy Hands Quilts
Angela at SoScrappy
Cynthia at Quilting is more Fun than Housework
Nicki at Mrs Sew & Sow





Monday, 6 February 2017

Monday's Promises and Y Seams

Boy, am I proud of my work this week? YES m'am!

Sometimes we don't do much; sometimes we sew up a storm. Well, I did one better: I tackled one of my fears! (\O_ O/)

Let's see.
The Westering Women made it to June on their journey. Then they stopped in Nebraska for a very long time. Well, it's time to get them going again. This weekend, I gathered them back together with the basket of fabrics and started to cut the block for July. It was an easy block.

Courthouse Rock.

Then I cut the fabrics for the August's block; the dreaded Chimney Rock with the Y seams!!

My first plan was to cut the pattern up in order to eliminate all those Y seams but I thought if I want to learn I need to practice. Right? So ...

Armed with patience and much apprehension, I sat at my sewing machine, then I stopped.

I turned the computer on and started to google a few videos.

Needless to say I have wasted a good hour on that ... but did find what I was looking for. (along with a whole lot more not relevant to quilts!)


Now better armed with patience, less apprehension and an undeniably  great technique, I started to assemble the Chimney Rock.

Ta-da!
I truly surprised myself. No cursing, swearing, frustration and no sense of failure in any of the 12.5 inches of this block. I am so proud of myself. Best bonus; it lays flat. Flat like a pancake! In the beginning of the year, we had to make a Gumtree leaf block. (Can't remember which month, but anywho!) I made it with the usual method of sewing Y seams as it is explain in all the books I have.

My block looks like this. It is a very good effort but just an effort nonetheless.  I hope the quilting will tame these "bubbles" in the middle as it doesn't lay flat at all.
With the new (to me) method, I can even show you the back of Chimney Rock with no worries. Not going to do that with the Gumtree block. :^{

Yay! me. Will I redo the Gumtree leaf? Don't know yet.

The tutorial I found is from Kaye Wood. Her technique goes against all technique I have seen, read and hear on how to sew Y seams. If you are interested, you can see Kaye Wood's tutorial here. 
Not sure how that method works when you have rows upon rows of tumbling blocks but for this block, it worked like a charm.

Here are the two newest blocks. The Westering ladies are now in Wyoming and are closer to their goals and so am I. Only four more blocks to go to finish Westering Women BOM. The block for September is also full of Y seams, so I'll put the new technique through another test this week.

Last week, I also squared up some blocks and started to assemble the border  ...
... on the 365 Challenge.
The right border is all done and the left is slowly getting there too.
It will be nice when all the borders are attached and I can get my floor back. The borders are one foot each so it is growing big real fast. I barely have enough room to tiptoe around it. It is now spread for the picture but when you are not looking, it is folded up somewhat.

These are the things that will keep me busy this week. What about your week? Care to share with us? Join us at :

Love Laugh Quilt for Monday Making

Em's Scrapbag for Moving it Forward 

Chances are you will be inspired.




Until next time ....  y seams await their faith!

;^)









Friday, 3 February 2017

OMG February

I didn't do so well with my January OMG.  :^{  

The ideas and inspirations took too much of my time and then I was "absorbed" into another quilt. The design was finally decided and it is only a matter of STARTING it now. The first step is sometimes the hardest.
 So, I have put that project on the back burner for the moment as, once again, Plan B has showed up.


My goal for February is to have all the blocks done for two different tops. Is that too much?  In 28 days?



The first one is the BOM Westering Women. The main reason for this is that I need the fabrics. I mean, I usually set aside in a basket or box, the fabrics I intend to use on a project so I don't use them all up on something else. 
projects under the quilting frame
Unfortunately, this method does restrict me.  Sometimes, I forget about a certain fabric and miss using a bit in a great block and sometimes I'll look for hours for it before remembering it's in the restricted zone for another project. :^{ 

There's a lot of fabric here. The basket is more than half full and it measures 24 X 14 X 10 inches deep. AND it's starting to be a mess in there. 


Since the blocks from January to June were made, I need to finish July to December.  I 've kept all the patterns on my computer so I can tackle this BOM anytime. Some blocks have lots of Y-seams or inset seams. Either way you call this, it is still "Yuck" to me. I might have to "reform" some of the units on certain blocks.
January to June blocks in no particular order

The second project is for a new quilt. Yes, I want to make a quilt for a little 17 month old boy. :^)  This means I am starting ( ) another project. (at your discretion, you may insert "yet again" in the blank space.)

I would like something FAST but FUN. I am thinking an I-SPY kind of quilt. I am very inspired by Sarah's quilt  seen here.



The cutting has started.

The stars will be a calm yellow.

Now I am not crazy and yes, I do need to sleep, so my goal is to only make the blocks. If I get beyond that, it'll be a bonus but 28 days can go by so fast.



Linking up with Patty at Elms Street Quilts for OMG! 

Until next time ... I spy with my little eye ...

;^)






Wednesday, 1 February 2017

A Collection of Mishmash Fabrics


In January, I joined my friends Cécile et Béa, in a log cabin quilt-a-long. The participants could chose any type of log cabin and every colours were accepted. One has to make 8 blocks in a month with the big reveal in March. Well, wouldn't you know that I didn't make the 8 little blocks in January.

I had to finish them this morning, February 1st. Not much was left to be done but it's still a "no cigar" finish. Being stuck in appointments that took longer than expected (and burned up most of my energy) on Monday and Tuesday, the little logs were left on the cutting table, waiting for me to show up and sew.

This being said, it is no excuse for my lack of preparation through out the month. I want to sincerely apologize to my friends from "outre-mer" for letting them wait so long for my post. I am sorry. That was very inconsiderate of me.


A hodge podge, a jumble, or a variety of fabrics have to come together to make my log cabins blocks. From polka-dots to plaids, from repro to modern and even some kids fabrics, all were called in to participate in the building of these cabins.

I want fabrics that talk to me, fabrics that came from friends, or that I won, or bought with a gift certificate. In other words, meaningful fabrics were used here.

Some came all the way from France, some came 90 minutes away from here.

Some show what I love; sunflowers, orange geo, birds, Scandinavian chickens. These little fabrics represent so many friends. In the left block, the hovering bird is a French General piece won in a "leftover scraps giveaway" that Randy so generous gave.

When I got the parcel in the mail, I was excited and so curious, I just had to open the package right away. Randy does know how to seal a package so no pieces get lost. I was only able to have a peek at the loot.

Here they all are after I got my hands on a pair of scissors. I was surprised at how much there was. Thank you so much Randy. I am more than please with the BIG leftover pieces. (No, these are not just little pieces, believe me.) Very generous. Thank you. :^D

Okay back to the log cabin.

For my design, some blocks need to be completely white ... uhmm ... neutral? Again, dots, birds, dogs, metallic, repro, whatever my fancy is, in it goes.

If you haven't spotted the fabrics you gave me, do not despair as I have 8 more blocks to construct for next month.

Don't forget to click the links because so many participants have wonderful blocks and some interesting layouts. Here are the links again :

Cécile at Patchwork Inspirations for the traditional log cabins
and
Béa at Une aiguille dans une botte de foin for the modern log cabins
Go check it out.


I'll also share with Sarah for "Can I Get a Whoop Whoop?" because I am glad they are done. :^D


Until next time ... I'll be logging.


;^)









Ready? Set. Quilt!

The new seat covers are taking shape. It looks so good with its dark frame. Then the basting started. Not many pins left. But...