Sunday, January 29, 2012

Quilts loved by all!

This quilt was made for another niece back in Nov. 2006 while she was going through her ear problems. She still uses it (or would like to) but someone else has claimed it. During the cold months, my sister does this with the quilt each morning before she heads out to work. Why, you ask?

To keep this feline warm! Each fall when my sister brings this quilt out of storage, Nike (the cat) cries when she sees it. She is getting old and has difficulty walking and she just loves this quilt to sleep under during the day.

So, after hearing about this, I made sure that our girls each had their own snuggly place to keep warm also.

This is where Miss Ashes spends most of her nights.

This is Miss Hank's hidey hole and she has just emerged from it after having a nice snooze.
We often see Miss Hank sit in front of the heat register to warm up when the furnace comes on. She definitely needs a warm place for sleeping.

So, not only do my family members love my quilts ..... the felines love them too!

Have a great day!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Baby thingies

A niece is expecting her first baby this May and I will be busy making baby stuff over the next month or so. Since they don't want to know the baby's gender beforehand .... these will be made into a girl quilt and these for a boy quilt. I have had these blocks made since July/August 2004. They were just going to be made up for any baby, but when my niece saw me working on them, she said that she wanted them for her babies. So, they have been sitting on a shelf for a very long time and it will be such a pleasure to finally get them made up.

My niece even made up an order form for me (this is how they told me a baby was coming this year).

Flannel material has been collected for a year or so now to be made into receiving blankets. My DH keeps asking me how the baby stuff is coming along. Time will run out when my sewing machine, etc. gets packed away and I want all this stuff done before we move.

Have a great day!

Friday, January 20, 2012

I've been busy ....

... finishing off this top and getting it ready for machine quilting. This quilt is intended for the cottage so no hand quilting for this one. A few more hexagons have been made for this project.

We've also been busy packing and sorting. Oh yes, these girls are coming with us ... for sure! They are definitely sticking close to us as we tape up boxes ready for packing. Both of them have been through moves before with their previous owners and they looked worried about this move, too. They have been getting extra loving to help calm them down.

Have a great day!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Still quilting along ...

It has been 14 days since I started a schedule for doing some kind of hand quilting every day ..... and I'm still on target. Yeah ..... that is such a good feeling. My hexagon quilt is coming along very nicely. Seeing that schedule every day is sure motivating me to continue.Someone asked how do I hand quilt a large quilt without a hoop? The following photos show how it is done (there is probably a better way, but this works for me).

In Fig.1, with my left hand (I am right handed) make a ridge about a couple of inches high as shown below on the left hand side of the photo.

Fig.2 - fold the ridge towards the needle. My thumb is under the quilt where the arrow is indicating. My thimble is underneath the quilt where the needle is showing and my hand is fanned out supporting a portion of the quilt sandwich (you can't see my hand but please imagine it). My quilting is coming towards me. Sometimes, I can rock the needle and other times, only one stitch at a time can be done.

Fig. 3 - Here is another photo showing the needle after it was rocked a few times. As I progress towards me, my left hand moves down the fold until the whole quilt needs to be moved up a bit. I sit with my knees up and they help to support the quilt. The left hand part of the quilt is unquilted and the right hand side has been quilted and that helps to stablize the quilt and helps to eliminate puckers on the back. Does anyone out there have a better method?

Of course, a new project got started ..... It Just Takes 2 is the quilt-along that I'm following and here are a few of my blocks. The embroidery is different to what is being offered from the creators of this project. If you are interested in doing this project, you must sign up for the newsletter for downloading the blocks. Usually, I never do any mystery quilts, but this one captivated me from the start.

I have promised myself to start only 4 new projects this year and this is #1. Once four of my UFO's get finished, then another new project will be allowed. Is this reality? We'll see! :o)

Have a great day!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

New year ... new goals

The beginning of the new year has made me sit back and reflect on my quilting and what I really, really want to achieve in 2012 .... and that is hand quilting. There are a number of tops waiting in my battered old trunk for needle and thread. So, on Jan. 1 my Hexagon quilt got started and I'm doing this one without a lap frame. A lot of the European quilters quilt without a frame and I thought this quilt would be perfect for that experiment. My stitches are not as tiny or as uniform but once this quilt is done and washed, it will have that perfect old-time look. My new-to-me wicker loveseat has fast become my spot for hand quilting and the girls don't seem to bother me here at all. Can we say bonus? On the loveseat are my two current hand quilting projects.

Sitting on top of my battered old trunk is this floral box ...

.... which contains all of my hand quilting supplies.

To encourage me to stay on track for doing any hand quilting each day, is a schedule (that goes to the end of May (then it will be too hot to hand quilt). As long as I see a tick for each day, that makes me happy. There have been more ticks since this photo was taken.

This year will see a major change for DH, the girls and I .... as long as our house sells in the spring, we will be moving north. The process has started with the Xmas decorations. Wish us luck!

Have a great day!