Sunday, June 26, 2016

A Busy but FUN Stay-cation :)

Last Sunday Connie drove down from Tennessee for her yearly visit!
I was so excited... and as I relive the highlights... I realize this was a Stay-cation this year for me.. I was her support staff as she got some quilty projects completed :)

Connie is my quilting mentor... she is the one that started my obsession!!!!!  

So Sunday we visited and relaxed... and enjoyed a wonderful bacon cheeseburger and tots meal too thanks to my honey's culinary talent!  It was sooo yummy :)  But by Monday morning and a good nights sleep under our belt she was ready to start quilting something... a baby quilt!!!
 And she is making it from stash... hers and a bit of mine too!!! :)

Then Tuesday she got a new doo!  Kimber, my hair stylist and friend gave her a GREAT makeover!!!
 Above is Kimber and Connie and below is how cool the back looks after a treatment, cut & style :)  Yippee!!!!
 AND we went to a LQS where I picked up a few things...
 Check out this cute ruler above... it is a size I have seen Bonnie Hunter use and I LOVE it!!

Below is a panel my daughter (who was with us) went crazy over ... so I bought the panel :)
I got Connie a ruler like mine as a surprise little gift.. and with this quilt shops name on it ... it is extra cute I think... it is 2 1/2" x 6 1/2" and is perfect for cutting up block parts during the piecing process :)

By Wednesday she had a flimsy completed...
 about 40" square :)

Then below she is layered and pinning...
 And just so you all know... she got a light grey solid binding sewn on after machine quilting all the ditches... then she hand quilted all the open spaces remaining!!!

Hopefully you will get to see the finish once it is gifted too... but it turned out amazingly beautiful with her tiny hand stitching in the pink with white thread and in the white with pink thread... this is a quilt for a girl baby being born to a coworker who has 3 boys presently!!! So lots of pink is a necessity for this little girl to be!! lol

Also while here Connie made us matching cup cozies...
 Here is a close up of mine....
 It has my initial "K" on it... it now sits on my bedside table.. a little reminder of our friendship that sends me off to sweet dreams and gives me a smile when I wake :)

Finally Friday was here... and we went to a local seafood restaurant!  We all have July birthdays and when we told our excellent server this ... she grabbed this shot after a group sang happy birthday to us all!!!
 Connie's birthday is July 3, I am on the 4th, my honey is on the 20th, and my daughter is on the 26th!!!!  Yippee :)

Check out the free desert we got to share too!
Yummy dessert called the "Boat Anchor"...

While we were at the restaurant we took some photos on the boardwalk attached!!!  Here are a couple!
 And here is a fun shot of me and Connie cheesing it up!!!
 but my fave shot was this new family shot!

So now my teenage daughter is gone for the summer... I have 5 1/2 weeks for just me and my honey to enjoy.  Wow... how long will it take this reality to set in???  Not sure yet!!!

But one thing I am certain of as I adjust to life sans any kids in the house for the summer... 

Monday, June 20, 2016

Traveling ~ A Slow Stitching Tip and Tutorial :)

"Traveling" is a term used in slow stitching to sneak in the batting layer of your quilt from one stitching area to another stitching area.

I first got the clue on the best ways to "travel" while watching a Hand Quilting Craftsy video by Andi Perejda... she is a marvelous hand quilter and quite acclaimed at her craft as well as a great teacher!! :)

I first saw this video about 3 years ago and I have done LOTS of traveling for sure since then!  I wanna share some tips featuring traveling less than a needles length from where you are but rest assured you can travel a bit further... Andi can explain it better than me!lol  If you wanna check out her Craftsy class after seeing my tutorial...

So here is where I was.. the last part of a block I was working on...

The rest of the shots are close ups of the black diamond on the right lower side...

First... make sure your traveling area is 1 needle length or less from where you finished stitching...

Tunnel from the end of your last stitch to your new line you want to quilt like this...
Make sure as your tunnel to your next line of stitching that you feel underneath the quilt and make sure your needle stays in the batting section of your quilt and doesn't want to the back or front of your quilt.

 Now I use needle pullers also known as hemostats... to pull the needle through as just a tad was showing in the photo above... so below I grasp the tip of the needle easily...
 Notice below I have now pulled the needle through enough... but it is pulled through just a bit further along than I will need.  THAT IS BECAUSE my first stitch will be a back stitch..

The first stitch should be a backstitch when I quilt it because it will not let that traveled thread get pulled and distort the quilt that way... so take a backstitch just prior to traveling or plan to make a backstitch where you travel to like I am here ....
 Here you can see my hemostat's AKA needle pullers better... they are good at grasping that tiny tip of a between needle! :)
I hope this traveling while slow stitching tutorial and tips has helped you!  I am doing some traveling today myself and still working on this same quilt! lol

Please feel free to ask questions :)  Linking this post to Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching Party HERE :)

Thanks for visiting and remember...

Friday, June 17, 2016

Happy Dancin' Progress!

Hello my bloggy friends... today I have progress to show you on most all my current projects :)

I am linking this Happy Dancin' post to Sarah's Whoop it's Friday Post HERE!

I have been slowly making progress on my fast stitching project... piecing "Singing The Blues" quilt...  Here are the 4 patches I shared in my most recent post... 128 all done :)

And today I can share that all the half square triangles (hst's) are done!!!  128 of those :)
 that was a lot of sliver trimming too... but took care of the dog ears and uneven areas all at once by sliver trimming... so I managed making good progress by completely prossessing groups of 8 charms or 16 hst's :)  Went by in just a couple days that way!

Above is my current work... making Tri-recs triangle blocks.. I am presently cutting the wing triangles as they are just like an odd shaped flying geese block...  this ruler set is on loan from Connie presently also... so nice to use her rulers in this quilt!!!

For a more clearer understand here is a snippet of my pattern with all my scribbles and figuring on it! lol!!
You can see above in this snippet that I have drawn out each of the 2 blocks that make up this quilt.  I will need to make 32 of each and have collected my blues according to how many are needed.. I need to count my darks but still waiting on friend donations for some of those!! I want this quilt to be full of fabric memories for me and my honey and our inner circle of friends that have fabric stashes too!!! lol

Also notice in my scribbling above that I have broken down each block into it's basic parts.. these will just go together like a 9 patch would actually :)  Once I get all the blocks ready for their places!!!

I am collecting charm squares but the blocks consist of 4 1/2" blocks.. well the charms work perfect for pieced blocks .. but I will be trimming them all for the plain blocks that have no piecing to a nice 4 1/2 "... I am VERY VERY VERY VERY glad I bought a Omnigrid 4 1/2" square ruler now just prior to starting this quilt... I am using it a LOT!!! lol

As I go from working inside during the heat of the day on this piecing... I pass right by this!!!
Gosh how I wish I had time to start quilting on this beauty!!!  This Spiral Log Cabin is going to be a wall hanging in our living room when finished on a focus wall as you walk into the house... I have the binding cut for it and Brandi's quilt also...
But it is waiting to be turned into binding... at least it is cut though :) lol!!!!

The black fabric is a solid like that thin inner border and will really set off the quilt I think... AND the zig zag is much more modern and will really add that final bit of pizzazz to Starlight.. Starbright for my daughter who is 18 almost! :) 

Which brings me to the main focus in my days lately...
I am in the middle of block 6 here ... out of 9 big 28" blocks total!!!

I am very happy that with all going on here otherwise I am making steady, even if slower than I like, progress on this project.  My daughter will be gone most of the summer so I will be really working to finish it before her return.

So that is why I am walking past my beautiful new quilting frame with the awesome wall hanging on it waiting for stitches to bring it to life... I must current focus on the quilting for my daughter's! :)

Also going on....

We got and rehabbed and sold a Singer Featherweight this past week... it is in transit to it's new home as I write this.  Here is a shot of my honey shining up the case a bit...
he works miracles with these machines and cases when we get them!

Also last week we got to see the Delta Rocket go up... we are about 50 miles (give or take) north of Cape Canaveral where they launch most of the rockets these days...
We watch it live via satellite feed online and once all is cleared and it launches we go into the back yard and watch it ascend!!!  That is a cool perk of living where we do I think!!!

My wallet was breaking down and I love having my phone and wallet combined with a wristlet strap... so I found this much nicer and all leather wallet to hold my iPhone... 

 But I had to purchase the wristlet strap separately off an Etsy store... lucky it was a very similar color they called indigo but I would have called navy...
I was able to pick the hardware on it so it matches my wallet in antique gold hardware so I am very happy now!!!

Notice there is just a pocket on the right side of this shot... the phone I took this shot with slides into that slot... so it is now WAY easier to access just the phone for photo ops etc... than it was before!  So happy I got this and spent the time finding the leather wrist strap too!

Before I close... thought I would share some highlights from June 6... CJ, my grandson, came over on his birth day and we all hung out... I got a very cool candid shot of him!
 I love this shirt his mom Kayla had for him... and check them out below crafting together!!!
 She painted his age in wood letters ... a little tradition she enjoyed when he turned one so she wanted to do again for his two year old birthday.  Here is how they turned out...
 the wood letters are on the top... and the outline from painting them got filled in by CJ Papa.. my son DL!  So it was a family focused project that ended with the letters painted like this!!!

I forgot to put something there for reference on size when I snagged this shot... but they are about 5" tall and more than 1/4" thick for sure!  And soooo cute!!!

And check out what my honey found for us to give this sweet young man for his second birthday!!!!
Mega Blocks to aid in dexterity and problem solving all in a wagon he can use for whatever... I love it!  And I bet he will too... can't wait for his next visit!!!

My honey got a hankering for one of those desserts you see pop up on facebook that look so yummy and easy you wanna try it out... do you know what I mean????

Well my honey found one he wanted to make so off to the store we went for "supplies" to make a Mocha Frappucino Pie.  It only has 3/4 cup cold coffee in the whole pie... so not a big caffeine boost but YUMMMY!!!!  Here is a slice... I couldn't resist taking a bit before my hand could get to the camera! lol

Well ... I am Happy Dancin' a lot in this post... hope you have a pleasant Friday and a relaxing weekend doing things you enjoy with those you love the most...

Until Sunday when I have a hand quilting tip to share...

Monday, June 13, 2016

Busy June ~ Time for a catch up!

So sorry ya'll that I have been MIA... but I am back!!! lol

Unfortunately, I must share some sad news.. there was a terrorist shooting here in the US close to our home in Florida... it is less than a block from the hospital my daughter goes to!!!!  Wow!!

Please take time to Pray for Orlando Florida today if you would... this is so devastating for us as it is for the whole US!!!
 Thanks for your compassion here!

On a happier note today ... June 13, 2016... is National Sewing Machine day!!!
Feel free to copy this and post it on your fave social media spot :)  Or pin it for fun too!

So will you be sewing for the special day ??  Will you be using this mechanical ingenuity?? lol

I hope to!

I have been working on parts to blocks... for a quilt for our bed.
So far you can see I have lot's of 4 patches complete and over half now of the half square triangles I need too!  Next up will be some specialty ruler blocks... I am waiting on fabric from my friends though... this is a memory quilt of sorts as I am using a LARGE variety of charms to make this quilt...
And more have been added... and will be added to this eclectic mix of blues :)  I am loving this and so is my honey so that makes me VERY happy!!!

Recently Connecting Threads had their cotton/wool batting on sale by Hobb's Tuscany... I bought a king sized one just for this quilt for only $29!!!  I bought a queen and a tad of some  other things to get me free shipping... and now I just wait for it to arrive later this week! :)  Yahoo!!!!

Here is my sketch of what this quilt will kind of look like if you are interested!
I love drawing out my quilty creations on graph paper... sometimes I used colored pens/pencils etc... sometimes I just need to get an idea out with perspective that the graph lines give me :)  How you design your quilts to be??

I have added quite a bit of information since this photo was taken... this quilt is 32 each of 2 blocks... the 54-40 or fight block and the shoofly block :)  I may add a pillow tuck to the top or I may finish it to be a cover only... not sure yet... but I am building this with lots of extra quilty knowledge under my belt since our last bed quilt (it was my first quilt to make! lol)

On May 31 my granddaughter turned 1!!! 
And soon after... on June 6... my grandson turned 2 years old!!!
So this Grammy has had a busy month for sure!!!

I have been making only slow hand quilting progress it seems... but soon will move it and share a shot with you all...

Mainly we are getting ready now for my bestie Connie's upcoming visit... she is coming down from Tennessee for 5 days and 6 nights!! I am sooo excited to see her ... we chat almost daily ... but not the same as spending time face to face for sure!!
Well, as we chat I am thinking of tons of things that need to be done.. so I will wish you well for now... and will promise to write more soon!  

Have a blessed week my bloggy friends!!!  No matter the violence in the world around us we must remember even MORE today than before that Life is precious and ...