On the Sewing Table...

What's on your sewing table? That's the question of the day. Seems like I always have something on the sewing table...usually more than one something! Sometimes it's a new project, sometimes it's a UFO...more often than not it's a UFO (a.k.a.,unfinished project)! I hate to admit it, but my unfinished projects are numerous, and one day... in a galaxy far, far away...I will finish them all! HA! 

So, despite all of the unfinished projects, I have a new project on my sewing table this week. In my last post I mentioned it..."a wall hanging kit I bought way back in 2003, and it is a garden scene." I have been sewing all of the squares together for the "back" of the scene, and once that is completed, I can begin the fun part of appliqueing all of the decorative items to it...tree, leaves, flowers, etc. As I mentioned in my last post, I am pretty excited about this project, which is a good thing, since I don't get too excited about much lately (except my grandchildren). 

I was mentioning this project to a friend of mine and she said, "That's great!", and then asked, "Do you have a place to hang it?". Uh...are you supposed to have a place to hang wall hangings before you make them??!! Hmm...I had not considered that! Thoughts? Should you make something you like and then figure out what to do with it, or just make it and worry about it later? I guess I am so used to giving most everything I make away, that it just never even occurred to me that I have absolutely no where to hang a large wall hanging! Oh well...all of my problems should be so small!

So, what's on your sewing table? Anything exciting? Here is a photo of what's on my sewing table!
On my Sewing Table

Happy Sewing and Quilting!


Babies and Springtime!

Once again, it's been quite a while since my last post! But in my defense, I've been a little busy with the arrival of 2 new grand babies in January...2 days apart! Yes, you heard correctly...they were born just 2 days apart. I have a handsome grandson and another beautiful granddaughter, and couldn't be more thrilled. Our little Lily is thrilled to have a baby sister too. Hahaha...after Miabella was born, all Lily could say is "She came out!" She is such a cutie, and already 4-1/2 years old!
Handsome Hudson

Beautiful Miabella

Of course, I was super busy making baby blankets, quilts, burp cloths, and pee pee tepees (http://sewmakeplay.com/2013/01/09/how-to-make-a-pee-pee-teepee/) before they were born! And since their arrival, I have been busy being Nana! The babies have been great for me, and have given me added motivation to sew and quilt again. It's been tough since hubby passed away just over 2 years ago (and it seems like yesterday), so having all of our children and grandchildren nearby has been such a blessing. This is my New Life! :)

Springtime has sprung! And of course, that is added motivation to bring out the bright pretty fabric to work with! The project on my work table right now is a wall hanging kit I bought way back in 2003 (I know what you are thinking!) and it is a garden scene. I was pretty excited when I bought it, and during re-organization of my sewing room a few weeks ago, I ran across it and got excited all over again! So, I actually started on it! I promise photos will be coming!

I did manage to finish a small farm scene wall hanging to send to my mother...now if I could just manage to get down to the post office to send it off...! I used Karen Eckmeier's (http://www.kareneckmeier.com/) applique technique for it, which is one I just love! Mom grew up on a farm and loves farm scenes, so I thought it would be cute hanging on her wall...when I actually send it!
Farm Scene-Unfinished
The Dallas Quilt Show was in March, and I attended as I do every year. I have yet to download the photos I took, but just bought a new computer, so I will be doing that this week. My old computer was a 2005 model and bit the dust. :( Oh well, I really like my new one, but am still figuring some things out on it. So, it looks like I just have a whole lot of catching up to do!

Well, gotta run. More later...with photos...I promise!

Happy Sewing & Quilting!

Big Sister Miss Lily


And Then it was Quilting Weather...

Wow! I did not realize how long it's been since my last post! My apologies...I have been a little busier than I thought!

It is finally cooling off here in Texas...woohoo! I really do enjoy quilting in cooler weather. The summers can be pretty toasty here, so piecing together tops is a better summer activity and quilting is better for winter.

Grand babies are T minus 2 months now...Due in January! The baby sewing is in full swing at my house. My daughter's baby shower is this Saturday and I am not finished sewing everything! My weekend was marathon sewing and quilting, and it looks like my evenings will be the same thing all week. Then next month is my daughter in law's baby shower...yikes! I had better push my needle speed to full speed!! 

Baby Quilt Front
Back of Baby Quilt

I finished the one baby quilt I was working on (see photos), and decided to keep that one for my house. Since it was sort of a "practice" quilt after many months of not quilting, it is rather special to me now. But not to worry, I am finishing up the baby quilt for my daughter...she actually sewed the top together, under my instruction, and did a very nice job! Now if I can just finish the binding by Saturday...! The quilting came out very nicely on it...photos will be posted soon, I promise. 

For my daughter in law, there is a quilt in progress. It's kind of a surprise, so I can't go into much detail right now. She is having a girl, so any guesses as to the color? :) I will divulge that I am using one of my favorite blocks...the Snowball block...in the quilt! Making Snowball blocks makes me really happy...as crazy as that might sound! If you have never made Snowball blocks, try it and see if they make you happy too. They are super easy and make such a nice design when put together. Here is a quick online tutorial http://www.straw.com/quilting/articles/snowball1.html.
Snowball block

Hmmm...Snowball block...sort of appropriate for winter weather, don't you think?! 

That's it for now folks! More updates to follow. Oh and, sorry to say that I did not make it to the International Quilt Show in Houston this past weekend, but go to the website to see the winning quilts, they are beautiful. I absolutely love the top winning quilt...and I happen to have a very similar photo! Check it out at http://www.quilts.org/winners.html

Happy Quilting and Sewing!


Quilting as Therapy

Why do you quilt? What do you get out of quilting? Quilting is certainly not an inexpensive hobby...at least not anymore. So why do you quilt? 

I was thinking back to the reasons why I started quilting, and there were several, but mainly relaxation. Yes, quilting, with all of its frustrations, is very relaxing to me and great therapy! My aunt was a fiber artist for most of her life, and she was a very gentle and relaxed soul. I believe it was because she worked with textiles and took great comfort in the feel of fabric. Have I mentioned lately that I love fabric?! :) 

Since I started quilting again after my husband's death, I am finding that relaxation factor, but it is also quite energizing. It gets my mind going and I start designing quilts in my head. I get a feeling of accomplishment and the sense that I am doing something positive in my life. Even just sewing something as simple as a baby burp cloth gives me great satisfaction and relaxation. Most of us work at jobs that, well let's face it, are not terribly exciting, so having a hobby that is fulfilling and relaxing at the same time is priceless. And, as I have discussed here before, quilting and sewing can be as expensive or inexpensive as you want it to be, because you can recycle/re-purpose fabric from old clothes, sheets, blankets and a variety of things. Buying quilt fabric from a quilt shop is a lot of fun...but that's where quilting and sewing gets expensive. Shopping for fabric yardage at a thrift store is fun and challenging...not to mention more cost effective and "green". So, why do you quilt?

And now for a change of subject...Embroidery

I'm so excited! I ordered some embroidery transfer patterns from one of my favorite quilt sites http://www.sublimestitching.com/ and got them in the mail yesterday! They were having a 1/2 off embroidery pattern sale, so I took full advantage! Here is a pic of what I got!

Embroidery Patterns

Baby Quilt

I am making progress on the baby quilt...the quilting is nearly finished and I can't wait to start on the binding! I am posting photos, so you can see the back and binding fabric I chose for this quilt. The back is a black polka dot print...and normally I wouldn't use a black back for a baby quilt, but for this quilt I challenged myself to use fabric, thread and batting that I already have and buy nothing new. So far, so good! This quilt is all from my stash! I believe I will be able to finish it without having to buy anything for it. BTW...my stash got smaller when I moved, but my sewing room is still too full! Oh...and also, I had a piece of Fusi Boo batting (http://www.fairfieldworld.com/product/51) large enough for the quilt, so I saved myself a lot of baste pinning and time!
Yellow is the binding; Black is the back

Quilted top
This weekend I will start on a crib skirt for my daughter's nursery...she is having a baby boy, and wants a crib skirt, quilt and matching pillows. Then I will make all of that for my daughter in law, who is having another baby girl! Yes, I have my work cut out for me...and I couldn't be more excited!

More later...
Happy Sewing and Quilting!


Best of Both Worlds

It's a Boy and a Girl!!

Pink AND Blue!

Blue Rag Edge Burp Cloth

Lavender/Pink Rag Edge Burp Cloth

Baby Quilt Project
 Okay everyone...the Gender Reveal party for my upcoming grandbabies was Friday night and...It's a Boy...and a Girl! That's right, one of each...the best of both worlds! My daughter and her husband are expecting a boy and my stepson and his wife (parents of my granddaughter) are expecting another baby girl. Very exciting! So, now that we know the genders of both little ones, that means it's fabric shopping time!! :)  We had a great time at the party...check out the photos!

Today I tested the burp cloth pattern that I posted the link for last week http://homemadebyjill.blogspot.com/2008/01/burp-cloth-tutorial.html. I thought they turned out really great, but here are the photos, so judge for yourself. They were fairly simple to make, however, I did figure out that I really need to get my scissors sharpened! They are dull, dull, dull and cutting flannel with dull scissors wasn't much fun at all! I am also so used to using my rotary cutter to cut fabric, that going back to scissor cutting was a bit tedious. That being said, each burp cloth took only about 10 minutes or so to cut out and sew up...then I just had to cut around the edges and throw in the washer for that frayed edge look. I made a blue one and a lavender/pink one...in honor of my upcoming new grandson and granddaughter! I do believe I will make some more of these kinds of burp cloths, as well as the old standbys that I make using cloth diapers. It's nice to try something new!

Next weekend is a 3 day weekend for me, so I plan on getting some more sewing done. I am posting a a pic of the baby quilt top that I am working on. Perhaps I will get that finished next weekend! Oh, and I have a wedding to go to on Saturday! I bought the wedding gift yesterday, so I think I am set!

Lots to do this week...work...get a personal trainer...get my hair done...wedding...sewing...quilting!! What are you working on this week or over the 3 day weekend??

Happy Sewing and Quilting!!


Stay Tuned...Gender Reveal Tonight!

Well folks, tonight is the night we find out the gender of both of my upcoming grand babies!! I am so excited, and will finally know what color fabric to buy! 

It's been a busy week, so this post will be short and sweet. Since I have been going 900 miles an hour, no sewing this week, but this weekend I plan on sewing for babies! Quilt Country http://www.quiltcountry.com/, our local quilt shop, is having a Starbucks event tomorrow morning and some other things, so I will run over there in the morning! Might just have to pick up some fabric while I'm there! 

So...I will post again after I find out baby genders!! In the meantime, Happy Sewing and Quilting!!


Happy Monday Everyone!

I hope you had a good weekend! Mine was spent running errands, organizing and cleaning...and fighting with my really old computer to work! I really really meant to sew...but, by the time I got everything else done, the weekend was pretty much shot. Oh well...I will try again next weekend!

So, as you know, I am expecting 2 more grand babies in January...very exciting! Of course, that means sewing lots of baby items, like nursery sets, bibs, baby quilts and burp cloths. Speaking of burp cloths, I have a method of making burp cloths, which I have mastered over the past several years, but I was looking for a bit of a different style to make for the new babies. I found this really cute raggy edge pattern that I want to try. It's over here at http://homemadebyjill.blogspot.com/2008/01/burp-cloth-tutorial.html. After I finally got my computer working again yesterday, I printed out the pattern and will attempt to make it this week. I will post photos of the finished beta test product. 

We are having a gender reveal party Friday night for both my daughter and daughter-in-law. I'm very excited to be finding out the gender of both babies on the same night! Back in the day, we didn't have gender reveal parties for babies, or even half the time know what the gender was! With my girls, the doctors got it wrong on both accounts. I was told they were both going to be boys...um..nope! Well, I guess there is a 50/50 chance!

Oh, in my shopping spree...I mean running errands chore...this weekend, I bought a swaddling pattern that is so cute! http://www.simplicity.com/p-7471-babies-swaddling-sacks.aspx. I plan on making at least one for each baby! If you don't want to buy a swaddling pattern, just Google free ones. There are several out there that are pretty cute!

Well, that's it for today! I'll be back later this week. In the meantime...

Happy Sewing & Quilting

I will leave you with a cute parting photo of my granddaughter Miss L and her daddy!