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Tuesday, January 13, 2015



A lovely holiday season with such good memories:

Market Bags made from my otherwise discarded rice bags


Concluding 2014...

These bags are too lovely to throw!
I participated in a Holiday Art Faire in another artist's home at the beginning of December and I made some money (so I can resupply!). I found customers and other artists at the Faire most interested in: 3-dimensional houses, market bags, holiday-themed coasters, wall decor, homemade ornaments, a prize-winning red and white tablerunner, and machine-embroidered hand towels.

After the Faire, I've continued English paper-piecing hexagons and other shapes (an easy activity to travel with and I find hand-sewing calming).

One of my current goals in the next few months is to bring some quilts to completion. I added another border to my heart quilt and would like to quilt it on a longarm machine if I can find one to use. I have at least 3 other quilts of various sizes to complete.

Log Cabin Cows

My neighbor, knowing that I like to quilt, offered me some of her fabric scraps a few years ago. Some are probably about 30 years old because they are obviously children's prints from years gone by. The motifs of a few of the fabrics inspired me to combine them. I fussy cut the farm animals, in this case, cows, featured in the center of the log cabin block (surrounding fabrics: red with tiny white dots, black with white "cow" spots), each one being a little wonky at 1.75"x 1.75" (more or less):

Log Cabin block with fussy-cut wonky cow centers measuring about 10" finished
When I put all the blocks together, I have fun combinations like these:

I've run out of the feature fabric in the center, so I had to "cheat" or improvise on 2 blocks by using a plain blue square of fabric in the center so I would have an even twelve 10" blocks. I think they're cute and I love the many patterns log cabin blocks can make. These are not quilt-quality fabrics, but they'll have to do. I'm a bit worried about the red fabric running in the wash someday. I might presoak the blocks in vinegar to set the colors.

Happy creating!

Connecting with friends like you via:

Sew Fresh Quilts        AND     WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced   AND    Quilting is more fun than Housework

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Three Dimensional Art Quilts

I enjoy looking at quilt magazines. I purchase older issues (from the year 2000 and above, because they're cheaper!) when I can find them. I especially enjoy the Quilting Arts Magazine.

In the December 2013/January 2014 issue, I found "fabric houses with an art-quilt flare" by Jacqueline deRuyter that I knew I'd enjoy making sometime in the future. For the last two weeks, I've been making progress:
I like the little random thread ends "flying" at the peak of the roofs.
Whimsical and perfect for winter

These are constructed with layers of fabric scraps that I've been saving, including ones that measure barely an 1/8"! They are placed on a panel of firm stabilizer (I used Peltex 71X by Pellon) and quitled well with an Aurofil cotton thread. I used Rit dye for the first 2 darker houses per her suggestion. I suppose this causes the melange of fabrics to share an overall color theme. I decided to skip the dying process on the next 2 houses, and changed the dimensions slightly on another to make it shorter and a bit wider. Once they were decorated with more bits of fabric scraps, beads, buttons and ribbons, I sewed their sides together and stuffed them with polyester, sewing the closing flap at the bottom with hand embroidery. As you can imagine, these can be further embellished in more or other ways: paints, stencils, inks, stamps, threads, yarn, etc.

Each measures about 2.5-3" wide, about 8-10" tall,.

They're fun! I hope to keep adding to this village and make them one feature at the Holiday Art Faire in December (see my previous post on November 14).

I'm also quilting and binding more table runners and trying to decide what to do with some blocks that haven't been assigned to anything yet. I may also complete a handbag or two before Dec. 5.


Linking up with:

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced                 Sew Fresh Quilts                    Modern Tradition Quilts



I only had time to complete these 4 housese shown before the Faire. I am thrilled that all 4 sold! I look forward to making more cuz I JUST LIKE THEM :) All 5 of my market bags sold, as well as some of my homespun tree ornaments. Holiday themed coasters were winners. A woman purchased my County Fair 1st place winning table runner and told me it would immediately replace the Christmas runner on her table at home. Several other items sold as well. I am glad some of my creations found new homes. 

Friday, November 14, 2014

Holiday Art Faire invitation!

I'm excited! I received an invitation to be the only Quilter featured at this event, and if you'll be in the area, you're invited!

My table runner is on the right with a felted cap upon it (I didn't mock-up this postcard, ha! ha!)

Here's how to find it:

By all means, please let me know if you'll be coming. I won't be present during the entire event, but if I am there, I'd love to meet you!

Items I'll be featuring:
  • Table runners, table toppers
  • Placemats
  • Tea Cozies
  • Gift bags for wine bottles
  • Gift tags
  • Recycled Rice bags-turned-shopping-bags
  • Oven mitts
  • Shopping or Market bags
  • Coasters & Mug Rugs
  • String bags
  • And more!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Paper Piecing Miniatures

I like paper-piecing blocks, even though it's challenging. I do appreciate that it helps to make miniatures or small parts of blocks in particular more accurate. Take these that I've done, for example:

The blocks look a bit wonky, not because they're just a "wonky" pattern. It's because they're challenging! In spite of the imperfections, I love the little star points. Each individual block of the 4 patch measures about 4.5". Together the block measures 9.5". Paper-piecing allows one to use scraps of fabric for projects, or specific fabrics for a more carefully designed work. I wanted to make a panel for a handbag with this 4-patch, but it's too big for the pattern I planned to use. 

Instead, I chose this set:

I surrounded each 4.5" patch with my hand-dyed fabric, purple/orange/pink/blue.

I quilted the panel with a simple grid pattern in pink cotton thread. Now the panel will be cut into 4 individual blocks for the handbag pattern. Those open squares are tempting me to do something else in them...machine embroidery? appliques? Will those overtake the star blocks? Hmmm....

These paper-pieced patterns come from the book Down in the Valley by Derksen and Harder. The book includes other very cute & very detailed patterns for paper-piecing. Has anyone else tried this particular book and made anything?? I'd love to see!

Happy quilting! Joining creative friends at:
WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced     and       Sew Fresh Quilts

and a new link site:
Modern Tradition Quilts

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Committed Hexagons

I thought you might enjoy seeing how I've used 6 of the hexies I recently created.

Christmas Coasters

Coaster Backs
I thought they needed to be dressed up, so I made this "bowl" or "pouch holder" thing.
They fit just right when stacked on top of one another. 
Perfect presentation for the holidays.

Now go have that luscious cup of tea or coffee :)

Linking up with you other creative bloggers at:
                             WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced   AND    Sew Fresh Quilts

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Hexie Crazed? Hexie Nuts? Hexie, why??

Have I been hex-ed??

There are times when I just like to sit and sew by hand. Sometimes I’m tired of sitting at the machine, computer or table. Even if I “relax” by watching a program on TV or a movie, I feel like I’m doing nothing. So I placate that drive to be productive by hand sewing. I think I actually get more out of the sewing than I do out of watching the program. (So why did I "watch" it??)

 In July I received a “freebie” at the Sisters (Oregon) Quilt Show: 1” hexagon papers for English paper piecing and precut sample fabrics (2” x 2” squares). I read the instructions to make my first flower:

I love chickens…how did they know that?? Had they read my blog?? I wish I had cut the fabrics myself so that I could have centered the chicken heads in each piece.

Since this beginning foray into the Hexie-World, I’ve been adding to my collection using scraps left over from other projects. I also bought a new packet of 1.75” hexie papers. What will become of them???

  • Use them singly or in combination with other flowers or other hexie shapes.
  • Applique onto other items, such as quilts, handbags, pillows, etc.  
  • Dare to cut one in half for another effect.

       They can be scrappy like I’ve made these, or planned out for specific effects and designs… “sew” many possibilities.

I enjoyed watching techniques for making hexies, including Sue Daley of BusyFingers. I guess these can be addicting!


Linking up with other creative people like YOU at:

Sew Fresh Quilts  AND   WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Portland Street Fair

I have been busy for the past few weeks preparing for a street fair in a major northwest city where I'll be selling some of my wares. I almost have my banner done:

I used fabric that I hand dyed in July for the background and dug out the red fabric from my stash. I'm getting excited!!

Here's one of the projects I'm still working on. I am auditioning fabrics for the binding:

A sampling of other items I've completed for the show:
A tablerunner

A tea cozy

Stuffed carrots

An autumn tablerunner

...and much more!

Linking up with other creative friends like YOU at:
Sew Fresh Quilts   AND   WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced