Saturday, 31 December 2016

150 Canadian Women Quilt

I signed up for a quilt project which is going to highlight 150 women from Canadian history.  Each block had the story of one woman from our history,  and 3 blocks come out each week.  I'm not doing very well at keeping up,  but I seem to be able to do 6 blocks every couple of weeks which should keep me on track in the long term.

And long term it is - there are 50 weeks of clues and we are on week 7 right now. There's still lots of time to sign up at  If you do,  you can get the first few weeks (and any others you might miss) on dvd at the end of the project,  for half price.

I am thinking about ways to maintain the link between the women's stories and the blocks,  for the final quilt.  Some of the participants have mentioned making a big label with all the names which sounds like a neat idea. For now I'm saving all the stories in a folder.

Thursday, 29 December 2016

Quiltville Mystery Progress

I have been trying valiantly to stay up to date on Bonnie Hunter's latest mystery,  en Provence.  With visitors here over the holidays sewing time is limited but I've been working away a few minutes each morning and today I can say I am completely caught up.

Step 5 is done and pressed and now steps 1 through 5 are all packaged up ready for the next clue.  Looking at my baggies,  I sure hope we'll get to use green and yellow soon. Those fabric are feeling very lonely right now.

Thursday, 17 November 2016

Retreat Recovery

Since I came home from my last retreat, I've been working my butt off at the longarm, trying to get ahead of customer projects as the Christmas rush is starting.  I made good progress so far this week, and finally felt I could take a couple hours off this evening to spend time back in my sewing room. 

The Modern Guild Canada 150 quilt is still up on my wall.  Jigsawing my way through it, and it is slowly coming together. There are going to be a pile of Y-seams in the remaining section, in order to get it all together, but hopefully all will go smoothly. I only had to re-sew the first Y-seam twice.

Next up, assuming I can steal some more time this week, will be two of my current mystery projects, since clues for them came out this week.  I have to stay on top of those, because Bonnie Hunter's mystery starts next Friday and that's going to throw a big wrench into all my plans :)

When I find a few minutes I'll post some pictures of the finished tops from my various retreats. There are about 10 of them
Block Party
Edge of 17 shop hop
paper pieced stars
Merry Mayhem New Year's Day mystery
Christmas tree
paper pieced table runner
Disappearing Dresden
Kaffe handkerchiefs

Sunday, 13 November 2016


This top has taken me about 3 years to finish.  I dragged if to every retreat I've been on since I started it,  but usually find something more interesting to work on. This time, I left an entire bag of projects at home, so when I finished my top on Friday I had little choice about what to work on.  So this one had to come out..

I'm pretty sure the others at the retreat were tired of hearing my complaints about all those little y-seams. But I finished the blocks before I went to bed Friday night,  and got the entire top assembled yesterday. DONE! And now to find a pattern for all the leftovers from this quilt.

Saturday, 12 November 2016

Another Retreat

Day one at retreat number 3, and I am off to a good start.  Got step one done in one of my mystery quilts. And I made myself a banner for my business. I can hang this in my window when I don't have an appropriate seasonal quilt to put up. Now on to the next project.

I left one of my project bags at home this time which is disappointing.  But it has forced me into working on a quilt I've been avoiding for ages.  All the blocks are assembled now,  and i can move on to putting the quilt together today.

Tuesday, 1 November 2016

Mystery Time!

It's time once again for Bonnie Hunter's mystery quilt! The colours and amounts are posted over the weekend,  so it's time to start shopping. When I saw the colours,  my first thought was. "I'm definitely doing my own thing this year" .

But then I hunted through my stash,  and started pulling fabrics.  Since I don't want to do scrappy,  I was looking for options that have enough yardage - 1.5 to 3 yards in most cases.  That limited my options,  but I pulled out all the possibilities lurking on my shelves.

And after many trials and adjustments and switches of fabrics, this is what I came up with.  Look familiar?  That's right,  essentially Bonnie's colours. I guess she knows best :)

I'm pretty sure this is what I'm going with.  I'm not completely happy with the white - it has little dots of colour throughout. So I might do some shopping for a replacement. But I do want white. The beiges I tried made the quilt dull. And I might end up worth a different yellow,  if something jumps into my cart when I'm shopping for white .

Sunday, 30 October 2016

Retreat Day 2

I'm having a very productive retreat,  finishing up projects this weekend.  This star quilt is part of a paper pieced block of the month from a few years ago.  Finally got the borders finished this weekend and it's ready for quilting

Saturday, 29 October 2016

Retreat Day 1

My current retreat is off to a productive start.  I finished 2 quilts that I brought.  This is one of them - a shop hop from a couple of years ago.  I finally finished (most of)  the blocks and came up with a layout I liked for the ones I had. Assembled the quilt and added borders at retreat,  and one project is off the list.

Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Mystery Quilts

Why is it that all the mystery quilts seem to start at the same time.  I have 3 going on right now. -  2 from guilds,  and one online.  And I know that Bonnie Hunter's mystery will be starting in a few weeks. Maybe I can avoid getting sucked into the New Years Day mystery overload I've done the last few years. The current mysteries are somewhat long term,  running until the spring,  so they should not be too much work each month.

These are my blocks from one of the guild mysteries.  The dark is my background,  and the light is my accent colour -  so I keep having to remind myself to switch the dark and light in the instructions. Hopefully I don't forget that little tidbit before next month's clue comes out.

Thursday, 6 October 2016

It's a Butterfly!

Look what I finished today!  Well,  not quite finished,  because it still needs 2 borders. But the piecing is done,  the sections are together,  and the quilt barely fits on my design wall :)

Everything went together really well,  but this quilt certainly is good practice for sewing accuracy. I probably should have checked a few of the blocks before assembly, but everything seemed to work out in the end.

Monday, 3 October 2016


And here it is, fresh off the longarm. My plus quilt is finished, only a year later. I just need to finish the binding, and then add the Victoria's Quilts labels to it.  I'll hand it over at our next meeting, and they quilt will find a good home.

I quilted it with a freehand loop design. I wanted something quick and fun after a couple of weeks of steady customer work.  I really like the way this quilt came out, but I think it's one of those "I did it once, not doing *that* again" projects.

Design Wall Monday

My design wall is a mess today, as I've started assembling bits of my butterfly. The wall isn't big enough to hold the whole thing, so bits are overlapping at the top.  Hoping to get this done in the next day or two so I can take it in the shop before I start quilting it.

I also started a couple of new projects recently. A mystery quilt that I found on Facebook (here), which is going to release clues twice a month. I figure that should be an achievable goal.  32 4-patches completed for step 1.

And a disappearing Dresden that I started yesterday at a class.  Just one more plate to make and then it's time to quilt it. We all agreed to take our finished projects to the November guild meeting, so hopefully a deadline will help me keep plugging along.

Thursday, 29 September 2016

Retreat Prep

A couple of tweaks to the butterfly and I think it's ready to assemble. I want to finish the body section and get it up on the wall before I call it done, however. Just a few more flying geese to make.

In the mean time, I've been trying to clean my sewing room. I have 3 retreats coming up at the end of October, so I figure I need to be super organized in order to ensure I have enough projects to keep me occupied during all of that fabulous sewing time.  So, I've been collecting and organizing bits in my sewing room, and trying to get quilts to a reasonable state to take with me.

This is my "Edge of 17" shop hop from a couple of years ago. I bailed on the last few blocks and decided to just go with what I have. So working on a layout now. Not sure this one will get to a retreat, since it's going to require quite a bit of design wall time.  But at least it is moving out of the "pile of stuff I should finish one day" state.

Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Half a butterfly

Here it is. I was going to say attempt one, but in reality I think this is number 4 or 5, after rearranging the blocks several times.  It's pretty amazing how much that wing changed after I added the 66 1/2 square triangles to the edges. It softened the whole thing, which I guess makes sense.

Thoughts on colour placement?  I think I'm pretty happy with it overall, but the oranges are so bright should they be either more grouped, or more spread out?  The top right is pretty much a done deal - there are no alternate colourways for the wheel and the log cabin blocks.

Here's a picture from before the triangles were added, with the circles in the lower quadrant moved around.  Maybe I should swap the dark cross at the top with the lighter one near the bottom.

Monday, 26 September 2016

Butterfly bits

All the bits are finished for my butterfly.  Now I just have to figure out how to put it all together

Thursday, 22 September 2016


Continuing to make progress on my Tula Butterfly quilt.  A bit of Orange Crush added into the mix now. These are the "chunk crosses", and I also finished the floating crosses, but I don't seem to have that photo downloaded yet.

I'm really excited to see how this is going to come together, and I've been working on it almost every day this week.  Incentive to get into my sewing room is great - but now I must push myself back to the long arm and finish up a couple of customer commitments for this month.

Monday, 19 September 2016

Seeing Double

Quality time in my sewing room!  It's been a long time coming, but I'm finally feeling back on track with customer quilts, enough that I felt justified in taking a weekend off for my own sewing.  I have been looking forward to starting this project and now here it goes!  This is Tula's Butterfly quilt, done with her new fabric line (Slow and Steady) plus some Kona solids. Can't wait to see the final product, but for now, two of everything seems to be the order of the day.

After a small blip getting started (only made one of each block), I have the first set of blocks complete.

I'm linking up at Patchwork Times (for the first time in a while) over at Design Wall Monday.

Sunday, 18 September 2016

New Project

My new project is finally under way!  I spent a couple of hours last night and got these 5 blocks done. Unfortunately,  I can't count and I was supposed to make 10 blocks (5 pairs).  I guess I know what today's project is going to be.

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

A Sad Demise

Apparently this is what happens when you continue to drop your seam ripper on the floor. I've always been an advocate of solid floors in a sewing room,  rather than carpet. But I do suspect that this would not have happened if I had been dropping the silly thing on carpet.

Now I have to interrupt my sewing to hunt for one of the other seam rippers which I know is hiding in my sewing room.

Tuesday, 30 August 2016

A New Project

Look at all this prettiness!  I just picked up a new project to work on.  This will be a sample for a local shop,  and a block of the month class.

Maybe this will be the inspiration I need to get back into my sewing room. I might have to clean up a bit first,  though. I'm not sure I could find space to cut anything or right now.

Wednesday, 13 July 2016

Q3 Finish Along Plans

Ah, more plans.  Q2 didn't go so well, but I'm hopefully for Q3. I'm trying to reserve a few slots for myself to get some quilts out of the closet and onto the longarm.  So, what do I want to do this quarter?  Keep in mind this list is going to be overly optimistic, so that when I pull some long-forgotten quilt out of the closet it still counts :)

First, my in-progress projects - these are ones that have not yet reached the quilting/binding stages, so they are the biggest stretch for finishing this quarter. I'd really like to at least get these to the "ready to quilt" stage this quarter. Of course, that doesn't count as a finish but at least it would be progress.

  1. Winding Ways - this is for a colour challenge, and is due at guild in May, so there is incentive to get it done.
  2. Blackford's Beauty   - my block of the month.  I should get my blocks back in April, so finishing the top & quilting it this quarter should be do-able
  3. Merry Mayhem New Year's Day mystery
  4. Star - 1/2 of the "Downtown" paper pieced quilt I've been working on 

From my "to be quilted" list, I want to finish at least 2 per month which would be 6 this quarter.  I'm putting a bunch on the list though - some are quick & easy, others want more time/detailed quilting. Which ones I do will depend on my attitude of the day when my quilting day rolls around :)  And if the world smiles on me, they might all get done.

  1. turquoise &; brown rectangles
  2. turquoise & brown diamonds 
  3. turquoise & brown baby quilt 
  4. Building Blocks
  5. Easy Street - Bonnie Hunter 2012 mystery
  6. Brights baby quilt
  7. Tell it to the Stars - Judy Laquidara 2014 mystery
  8. One Block Wonder 
  9. Giant Scrappy Swoon 
  10. disappearing hour glass #3
  11. Baby Reflections
  12. Houses - 1/2 of the "Downtown" paper pieced quilt
  13. Reflections of the North 
  14. 3 "Plus" quilts
Photos below are in the order listed.

And my binding projects:
  1. 2 disappearing hour glass quilties
  2. Kaffe stripes quilty
  3. Turquoise and brown baby quilt

Monday, 11 July 2016

Winding Along

A couple of hours in my sewing room,  and another row of winding way blocks has made it onto the wall. Just ignore that out of place block towards the lower left corner - it spun around while being attached and is going have to be spoken to about proper placement.

Onwards we go.  Once the next 2 rows are sewn,  I'll have room to place the final two sections.

Tuesday, 5 July 2016

Q2 Finish Along summary

I did not do very well with all my goals for this quarter's finish along. But I did manage to get 2 things completed.  Glorious and Free was shown earlier on here , but I can't believe I never actually posted a complete photo of Ascension.  That little wall hanging was completed on time for the quilt show, but never appeared on my blog with binding completed. So here it is.

And that, unfortunately, is it. For all my grand plans I finished 2 quilts this quarter. Well, better luck next time, right?

Sunday, 3 July 2016

Baby Giraffe!

Woohoo!  Gertrude is complete!  I finished up my baby Giraffe Abstractions today (well, the top, anyway).  In the photo, you can't tell the size - it's 1/2 the original size, so it finished at 22x30".

I have no real idea how much fabric this took - I pulled from stash, and didn't measure as I used it.  I'm going to ballpark that it took about 10" (on average) of each of 8 colours, so that's 80", or 2 1/4 yards of fabric.

I also have my 2 plus quilts (seen here) to add to my stash report today.  4 1/4 yards for the black and white, and 4 1/4 yards for the grey.

and I guess I should own up to some fabric purchases recently.  Over the past couple of months a few bits & pieces have come home:
1. Paris fabric, to replace a quilt I sold  - 8 yards
2. Some greys and backings from a new shop I discovered close to home - 10 yards
3. and some impulse purchases from hours 6-8 at Quilt Canada - 15 yards

So, a sorry state for my stash report today after a couple of months off.
11 1/4 yards out, 33 yards in.

2016 totals:
108 1/4 yards in
117 1/2 yards out
Total: 9 1/4 yards out
Head over to Patchworks Times today for more stash reports.

Saturday, 2 July 2016

UFO Challenge - July

I wonder how many new UFOs I've managed to create since last time I checked in with Vicki's monthly UFO challenge.  Despite not spending a lot of time in the sewing room, I'm pretty sure there are some new projects that didn't show up last time I reported.  I think my biggest problem is that nothing on the "in progress" list is inspiring me.  I need a fun project, that will keep me going back there, because my longarm is pretty much full up with customer quilts, so getting my own off the 'to be quilted' list is not happening these days.

It's time for this month's UFO roundup, so here goes.  The pictures are two of the new starts, which are ready for quilting. They'll be heading off to Victoria's Quilts in the fall, so that should ensure they get some time on the longarm over the summer.

At the beginning of April I had the following projects:
12 in progress (oops, that's a step backwards)
7 planned but not started
18 to be quilted
5 to be bound

I did manage 4 finishes, despite my lack of entry into the sewing room (year to date - 20 finishes).  And also created a few more UFOs in training.  Now I seem to have:
12 in progress
7 planned but not started
21 to be quilted
3 to be bound

The detailed list for the past 2 months, so I can keep track of where I am :)

In progress:

  1. Scrappy pineapple
  2. Row by row 2015
  3. Edge of 17 shop hop quilt
  4. Kaffe stripes
  5. Patchwork Year 
  6. Gardener's Alphabet
  7. Merry Mayhem
  8. Stars 
  9. WindingWays
  10. Blackford's Beauty (Block Party)
  11. baby giraffe (mini Giraffe Abstractions)
  12. dashes (Block of the Month win)

Planned (fabric bought and/or collected)
  1. recipe wall hanging
  2. drunkards path variation
  3. Christmas wreath
  4. Christmas reindeer
  5. two cityscapes/panels
  6. ombre flying geese (leftovers from Spectrum) 
  7. Jeans quilt
to be quilted
  1. Building Blocks - 2012
  2. Easy Street - Bonnie Hunter 2012 mystery
  3. Turquoise Trails - 2013
  4. Labyrinth - 2013
  5. Rainbow Explosion - 2014
  6. Brights baby quilt - April 2014
  7. Tell it to the Stars - Judy Laquidara 2014 mystery
  8. Block of the Week
  9. turquoise &; brown rectangles
  10. turquoise & brown diamonds 
  11. One Block Wonder #2
  12. Border Creek Station mystery (started Oct 2014)
  13. one-fabric quilt
  14. baby reflections 
  15. giant scrappy swoon
  16. Disappearing hour glass #3 
  17. 2.5" plus quilt
  18. 5" plus quilt
  19. Modern plus quilt
  20. Houses
  21. Reflections of the North

to be bound
  1. turquoise & brown baby quilt
  2. 2 disappearing hour glass quilties
  3. Kaffe stripes quilty
Finished since last report
  1. Ascension 
  2. Allietare - Bonnie Hunter 2015
  3. Missouri Star drunkard's path
  4. Glorious and Free