Friday, May 1, 2015

Sidetracked again

I have a small knitting group that meets every couple of weeks for coffee and chatting. We have been getting together for several years now. Started off with just me and Karen. We found Joy about 2 years ago and she is a good addition to our group. We meet at Karen's house and I bring some of my fresh roasted coffee beans.  Karen and Joy both are spinners. A couple of times Joy brought her wheel and they both spun while I knitted. Although I love handspun yarn, I was NOT going to get into one more craft. Famous last words. So I hit up Karen about letting me use her wheel to spin one skein of yarn. I did some research, read some books, watched some videos. When I saw an old friend in CA in January, she was getting into spinning and suggested I should try a spindle to get the hang of it before trying Karen's wheel. Karen lent me a couple of spindles. I had bought a bit of fiber in CA at Dharma, but didn't want to use the good stuff to practice so I got some clearance stuff from Knit Picks (that is why I have pink) and tried it out. The first time was a disaster, the spindle went all over the place, I had no control over it. So the next knitting group Karen advised me and I used the other spindle. IT WORKED! Okay, I am now hooked. I bought a set of 4 spindles and gave Karen hers back.

I made yarn!

My pink practice fiber

My set up for now
So I have a couple of batts and a roll of fiber. I am still very slow and can't do a lot at a time. But hopefully in the next couple of weeks I will be able to ply. Stay tuned.

Soon to be a bowl
I love making clothesline cord bowls! I had a bunch of scrappy brown strips and so decided to make a big bowl

Starting out
I found that I like my open toe embroidery foot better than my walking foot for this technique. It seems to work better.

Big Base
I had a lot of cord, so this guy is gonna be a big boy.

At the curve
I hold my left hand under the base to tip the bowl while stitching to form the curve.

Big Boy!

Little green brother
Last week I made this little green guy.  I love to use up scraps of fabric in my quilting and sewing projects.

So these two guys are now in my Etsy shop. Now that I am hooked on spinning I want a wheel. So now to save up some $$ from my shop. If you are interested in anything in my shop I have a coupon code good for 10% off anything in the shop BBLOG10. I also am downsizing my studio and have a lot of wonderful, lightly used to new books and patterns for sale. And some of my hand dyed fabrics.

This is my off the wall post for this week.

Friday, March 27, 2015

I am here. Really!

I had thought about writing a blog post last week. But I had nothing to talk about. So rather than spewing nonsense, I kept quiet.  This week I finished another Journal project. I had talked about it last month.  I really did intend to make these weekly. I guess it is not a weekly journal project. But it will be a 52 piece project.

Inspiration photo

I went with this inspiration photo and using one of my hand dyed fabrics I quilted the piece and then added some yarn scraps couched down on top of the quilting. I am happy with the result.
Plaid Sky

My second ever Weekly Journal I titled "So much for out there". I am not sure what exactly I meant by that. At the time this was made (September 2011) I was trying to put myself out there. So something must have glitched.

So much for out there
I had taken a class and failed spiraling.  So this was proof that I could actually spiral!

This is my off the wall post for this week.

Friday, March 13, 2015

Pie Plating in Fountain Green

The ladies of the Pie Plate Pattern company put on an annual Super Spring Retreat. It is held in their small town of Fountain Green, UT. It is about 20 miles Northwest of my home. Always a great time! A very nice, small town retreat.  My friends Lisa and Helen came down to the retreat, so an extra bonus.

It takes 3!
I have never used Mistyfuse and recently there was a special on a hundred yard roll of the stuff. So Lisa and I went in on buying one. Lisa uses it a lot. It took three of us to roll off 50 yards off the roll.

My Mistyfuse
The rolled off bit doesn't look nearly as nice as the factory roll. It will still do its job.

So Lisa gave me a quick demo on how to use the fuse.

On the Goddess sheet
You need to use a Goddess sheet because this fusible web doesn't have paper attached.

Action shot
You cover it with the Goddess sheet and press the fusible to melt it.

Ready to cut
Lisa brought her Silhouette machine to cut some leaves for me. I asked for her help with a project and thought her machine would cut out the intricate shapes easily.  Well, it was a good theory anyway.

Beautiful leaves!
Lisa designed a lovely page full of leaves for me! SO excited! Let's see how it works!

Unfortunately, Lisa  forgot to bring the fabric blade for the machine. The paper blade kept picking up the fabric and scrunching it and not cutting through it cleanly.  UGH.  So she will take my fused fabrics home with her and cut them at home with the proper blade. So then I can be impressed with that machine.

Block challenge
Everyone got the fabric to a make a block of their choice. We will vote on our favorite and the winner gets to keep all the blocks.

Lisa in action
Lisa at out table working on her blog post of our adventures.  

This is my off the wall post for this week. Next week I hope to have something to show after having 2 more days to sew like crazy!

Friday, March 6, 2015

Challenge projects.

I had joined a challenge on the Quiltart list. There were 12 people signed up and only 7 made a piece for the challenge by the due date. Disappointing. The challenge was "Patterns in Nature".  I had taken a photograph of a eucalyptus tree for my inspiration. I cut the sections free hand and then added a layer of tulle to hold it down while I quilted it using my trusty walking foot. You can see the rest of the challenge pieces on Sue Kaufman's blog.

New Canyon Lake
Another online challenge group is the A4 group. The latest challenge was in the woods. I made a tent with a forest print for the background. I added a bit of lake and then I added some dragonfly charms since my quilted trees did not show up.

Trees? I can't see no stinking trees!

This is my off the wall post for this week.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Changing directions

So my Crossed Canoes idea fell through. I was having some technical issues with construction of the blocks. So I changed direction! I visualized some tents in the woods. So into EQ I went and drew up a block in two sizes.

Small block, pre-trimmed
They worked up great by paper piecing. You can do a thin tent pole easily with this technique.

The start of my Tent City
When we have the entire family up at the lake the overflow sets up in what we call "Tent City". So that is what I am naming this project.

I am a thread tucker
I have finished the quilting and am ready to bind.  I did some walking foot work and then filled in the background with free motion quilting. I am a thread tucker. I don't like the lumps that happen when you do three small stitches in place and then trim the thread. I take the time to tuck all my starts and stops. It just looks better to me.

Also check out the Quilt Keeper's blog! The reveal of the fabric challenge is posted! They had to use a specific fabric and had to have a circle somewhere on the piece. Love the variety of project ideas.

This is my off the wall post for this week.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Fresh Start

I started a new project. I was playing with the crossed canoes design in EQ and since this year's quilt fest has a Quilt Camp theme I thought it would make a good class. 

12 inch block

6 inch block

Possibly fabric selection
I really need to get going on the sample, the forms need to be in by the first.

First new Journal piece
Three and a half years ago I started a weekly journal project. I was going along ok, skipped a few weeks here and there but always intended to make it a 52 piece collection. I quit the project after my brother died. I have always intended to get it started up again and while I was in California in January I did! I had all the parts ready to go 3 years ago for this little piece. Now it is finished!

Back and label
And labeled! I am not sure what this week's piece will be. Maybe some idea will spring forth from the crap, er, um, stuff on the cutting table.

The first piece in the journal project

Back and Label
This was the first of my journal pieces. I had been driving up the hill and with a clear blue sky there was lightening over the mountains.  I will try to share the old journals when I show my new ones.

The sky this morning! I love the way that the jet streams cross! This might be the inspiration for my next journal piece.

This is my off the wall post for this week.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Getting back into the groove!

I had a wonderful 2 weeks in California! Saw a lot of good friends, went to a retreat, taught a class and sewed like crazy! I had brought along a bunch of batiks in purples and yellows. I had a theory about doing a QAYG without sashing strips between the blocks.

2 panels
I pieced strips and then quilted them to the batting and backing. I made 3 panels. I let fabric hang over the top and bottom edges for sewing the sections together.

2 quilted 1 not

I then quilted each of the panels. When I tried to sew two of them together I discovered that I have a few issues that I need to get worked out. I may just finish off each panel separately.  It is now on my design wall curing.

Vintage Fiber Art
I stopped by and visited my Mother-in-Law on my way home. This piece of fiber art has been in her home since I first met her in 1979. I was always intrigued with it. It is made with layers of felt on a burlap base. It has some rug hooked loops and also some embroidery stitching. It depicts San Francisco.

Close up of rug hooking

Close up of felt layers
Has anyone ever seen anything like this? I couldn't find a signature on it.

This is my Off the Wall post for this week.