September 21, 2018

Love Birds pattern updated

I'm working on getting my patterns printed so they can be stocked by quilt shops, which has been such a big learning curve for me. Of course, when I don't know how to do something, I tend to procrastinate on it for ages, so I've been wanting to do this for a loooong time, but I'm finally getting it done. We'll just focus on that, okay?
Love Birds quilt pattern |
Love Birds is the first pattern I'll be having printed and to get it ready I expanded the pattern to add baby (48" x 48") and throw size (60" x 72") instructions. Options are wonderful, right?

Then Yvonne, of Quilting Jetgirl, worked her technical editing magic on the pattern, making it better than it was before. If your patterns need tech editing, I definitely recommend working with Yvonne 😊

Love Birds quilt pattern |
I've also updated the PDF pattern file available in my Payhip and Etsy shops, so if you want the PDF pattern, click on one of the shops to get yours today.

If you'd like to see my printed patterns in your LQS, I'd love to have the shop's contact info so I can reach out to them once I have those patterns in hand.  I've been getting quotes from printers the last few days, so I'll soon be ready to place that first order.

Have you tackled anything new lately? Or have you been procrastinating on trying something? Please tell me I'm not alone in doing that, lol!

September 18, 2018

Appliqued Stars

I've started appliquing my EPP stars to their backgrounds, now that I've figured out how to make them into something I will enjoy making, and I'm loving the process!

So far I have 6 stars finished.
Appliqued EPP stars |
When I last posted about these stars, I wasn't sure what I would use for the backgrounds and I speculated that maybe I'd use solids. As you can see, that's not what I decided on.  These low volume backgrounds make me think of a vintage scrappy quilt and every one of them makes me smile.
Appliqued EPP stars |
I'll probably mix in some darker backgrounds, especially for some of the white, cream and light yellow stars, though I also like the idea of having lower contrast between the stars and the backgrounds in some of the blocks. I feel like that makes people look a little closer to see those stars.
Appliqued EPP stars |
I'm using threads that match the stars and stitching them on with ladder stitch, which is pretty much invisible.
Appliqued EPP stars |

Appliqued EPP stars |
This definitely won't be a driving project. Our roads are much too pot-holed and bumpy for the precision that ladder stitch requires. It is great for working on while I sit and watch baseball with Paul, though. I also took it with me when I went away with my MIL and two SIL this past weekend and finished three stars while we were sitting around chatting.
Appliqued EPP stars |
I've cut the backgrounds at 6 ½", so they'll finish at 6". That leaves me room for the curves that are part of the floor that inspired this quilt, if I do decide that I want to include them. I'm thinking right now that the sashing and the curves (bias tape?) would be the same so that the variety of fabrics won't be overwhelming. Using the same fabric for both would probably have a calming effect, unifying the craziness of all the other fabrics.
Appliqued EPP stars |
I have three more stars pinned to backgrounds and then it's time to prep some more. I really enjoying picking through my container of stars to choose which one to put on each background. I also half expect that at least once I'll stitch a star on with the papers still inside the diamonds since I've already tried to pin two in place without removing the papers. The sound of the paper rustling was the only thing that made me realize what I was forgetting 😏

So, right now, I stand at 6 stars finished and 100+ left to go, which makes me quite happy. I love a good work in slow progress, as Jasmine of Quilt Kisses calls them 😊

September 17, 2018

Calling Out

Devotion for the Week...

My husband likes to change the channel to the news network whenever the show he's watching is commercialing and, over the past year or two, I've been amazed by how often the discussion on the news is about the same thing for hours on end, just with different announcers and different guests. It's the same on all of the news networks, not just the one Paul watches. It's not the fault of the networks or the announcers, necessarily, just the fact that they have 24 hours to fill and only so many news stories to share.

I thought of those news announcers, and their guests, filling the hours when I read the beginning of Proverbs 8 recently. Here are verses 1-6:

Listen as Wisdom calls out!
    Hear as understanding raises her voice!
On the hilltop along the road,
    she takes her stand at the crossroads.
By the gates at the entrance to the town,
    on the road leading in, she cries aloud,
“I call to you, to all of you!
    I raise my voice to all people.
You simple people, use good judgment.
    You foolish people, show some understanding.
Listen to me! For I have important things to tell you.

Wisdom is personified in Proverbs as a woman who is calling out to humanity, encouraging us to listen to her. Not only is she calling out, but she is going out to the crossroads and to the gates of the town, the most crowded places around. She's trying hard to be seen and heard by the people so they will stop and pay attention to her words.

Wisdom isn't just filling the hours, sharing the same story over and over again. She has life changing insight to share with us. Insight that could change the way we live and how we relate to God and to other people. But she has to get our attention before she can share it with us.

Then, of course, she also has to keep our attention.

When the news programs are going to commercials, the announcers will offer some hint of what will be coming on after the break, something to make viewers want to keep watching rather than switching to something else. They are aware that they are fighting against a lot of other things calling out for our attention, like other news networks, all the other TV shows, movies, social media and Youtube videos of funny cats or adorable babies. 

Wisdom also has to fight all of those distractions as she calls out for our attention.

"Listen to me! For I have important things to tell you," she says in verse 6. That sounds to me like when I'm trying to tell Nathan something and I know he's not really paying attention and he's going to miss what I have to say. I often tell him to look at me so I can be sure I have his full attention before I say it again. Wisdom is practically waving her arms on the side of the road, trying to get us to look at her so we are really paying attention to what she has to teach us.
Weekly devotions on Christian living |
I wonder how much wisdom we miss out on because we're so focused on those other things that are calling out to us that we never even hear her voice.

September 13, 2018

TGIFF - Drawstring Bag

Hello and welcome to TGIFF! Today I'm sharing a finish that was actually made over the summer, but I never got around to sharing it until now 😊

A few years ago, I made a drawstring bag for one of the boys I was then babysitting to carry the paraphernalia for his cochlear implants. Over the summer his mom (who is also my friend) asked if I could make him a replacement since the old one was starting to look worn after years of constant use.

I knew I had nothing in my stash that was school age boy appropriate, so off I went fabric shopping. Oh, darn, right? I picked out these planes, which I love, and the coordinating Northcott red solid for the inside of the bag.
airplane fabric |
I used Jeni B.'s lined drawstring bag tutorial and I think the whole thing only took me a morning to make. I chose to make the outside of the bag using only the planes fabric so the planes could really shine. I think the bright red drawstrings are fun, too.
Drawstring bag |

Drawstring bag |
I love the red lining the bag, too.
drawstring bag |
I'm thinking he won't outgrow the planes before the bag starts looking worn like the old one did. Of course, if he does, I could always make him another one!

Now it's your turn! What have you finished lately? Link it up so we can all celebrate with you and don't forget to visit some of the others links, too. The party is always better when there's some socializing happening 😊

I'll be away this weekend, but I'll be sure to check out all of your finishes early next week. Have a great weekend!

September 12, 2018

An Essex Linen Everyday Skirt

The Everyday Skirt I made back in March got a lot a use over the summer. With the elastic waist, the pockets and the perfect length, it was so easy to wear and there was no doubt in my mind that I wanted to make more. So, when I ordered the knit fabric for my maxi skirt, I ordered some Essex linen to make a second Everyday Skirt too.

I picked the indigo colour linen, aiming for it to go with everything, just like a great pair of jeans. The colour ended up being a little more grey and less blue than I expected, but it still looks to me like it will go with everything.
Essex linen Everyday Skirt |

Essex linen Everyday Skirt |
The linen creases a bit, but it's not too bad. This is after I wore it at church, at lunch and on the drive to the beach.
Essex linen Everyday Skirt |
This was my first experience with Essex linen and I really like the substantial feel of it. It holds the shape of the skirt differently than the rayon does, making it look a little like an A-line skirt whereas the rayon hangs straight down.

I can also see why some people like to use Essex linen in their quilts. It has a fabulous texture and the yarn-dyed has great variation in the colour.

I think I'll still want to make more of these skirts. They're not called the Everyday Skirt for nothing...I could seriously wear it everyday if it weren't kind of impractical to wear a skirt while wrangling toddlers for a living 😊 And as a bonus, it only takes an evening or so to make, except when you keep losing the ends of the elastic while trying to feed it through the casing and then, after finally getting the elastic secured, break a needle on the first stitch of the hem. For my sanity, I had to abandon the skirt that night and finish the hem the next day, lol.

I love the wild rose bushes at this beach and I couldn't resist a few pictures of the roses when Aiden and I went to get the pictures of the skirt. I love how there's every stage from bud to rosehip all at the one time.
Roses |

Roses |

Roses |

Roses |
What pattern (garment or quilt) do you love to make over and over?
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