Monday, April 30, 2007

Get Away

Ahhh, internet problems. I finally get a chance to get on to post...and I can’t get in! We seem to be getting more and more server problems these days. What a busy week. We had a great few days in Pittsburgh! Sorry, no pictures from our trip however. We were about an hour’s drive from home when we realized we had forgotten to bring the camera and there was no turning around at that point. What a pair?!? We really did need a few days away! Luckily for us, we picked a very nice hotel, with a fantastic huge jacuzzi tub in our room, so that certainly made for a very nice end to a long day, especially since you could lay back in the whirlpool with a glass of wine in one hand and watch the TV from the comforts of the swirling water! So lots of driving, lots of shopping, eating, and relaxing. It was a wonderful get-away.

I did manage to find one cross stitch shop, a very nice one called Teatime Stitchery and I found a few little things to add to my stash, the new book by Blackbird Designs, and one of the Little House Needleworks/Crescent Colors collaboration, pictures below.
The fabric is called Fossil, its just a small remnant piece but the colour was too cool to pass up!
Unfortunately I didn’t make it to any quilt shops, however Joann’s Fabrics managed to satisfy my fabric shopping.

We were back home late on Friday night and Saturday I spent the day in Toronto at the Knitting Frolic - more shopping and more stash enhancing, this time for my wool stash.

And Sunday was spent working on a quilt for Kristy’s upcoming 16th birthday. Pictures coming for that.....

There were several of you interested in the Spring Sampler which I offered up in my last post, so to be fair, I wrote down all of your names and had hubby draw one, and Sonya was the winner. So Spring Sampler will soon be flying on its way to you, Sonya!

I still need to catch up with blog reading....and see what everyone has been up to!

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Spring Sampler

Spring Sampler by Little House Needleworks using Crescent Colours Belle Soie silks, on 32 ct Natural Linen

C'est fini! Sorry the colours in my scanner don't seem to be picking up the pretty greens, they are much much nicer in RL. Its nice to get a smaller finish, I don't get many of these since most of my stitching projects are so huge. The new Belle Soie silks are so nice to work with, very reminiscent of Gloriana silks, although I was coming close to finishing the light green and had to be very careful towards the end that I didn't run out. That said, while I don't have enough to do a second piece, I am happy to send off my slightly used pattern and leftover silks to anyone who is interested in giving this little piece a try.

Leave me a comment if you are interested!

I know its Sunday, but its going to be a work day for me. Hubby is finishing up some holiday time this week, so we are off on Wednesday to Pittsburgh for a few days, just the 2 of us! How romantic!! I don't know yet what we will be doing, but shopping is definitely in, I have have addresses for all the local Joann's to plug into the GPS, and my Visa primed and ready.

Shocking - it was like summer here yesterday! The temperature outside my car read 27 degrees C!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007


At least I can show some of what I have been working on.....

My PIF gift to Su:

This is called Quaker Tree, a freebie from The Workbasket. I used one of the new DMC colour variegated threads for this, and a hand-dyed fabric, 25 ct Vintage Country Mocha, very pretty and toasty coloured.

And my PIF for Sonya:

This one is called 'Think Spring' by Calico Crossroads, done on a 28 ct pink linen, and it used a really pretty Needle Necessities floss called Finian's Rainbow. I really fell in love with this fibre and I'm dying to use it again. Its used in the specialty stitches around the edges, which unfortunately don't show up too well in the picture.

I'm so happy that my first PIF's are out and now its time to send out these next batch!

Last night was a quilting night, I worked on the next stage of my Twisted Log Cabin blocks for my next class, its next week, but I needed to get my sashing done since the intersections involve different coloured stars and if I didn't get them all just quite right, I would end up with stars with different colours points = wonky stars.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Spring Sampler

Here is my update on Spring Sampler by Little House Needleworks. I'm afraid I don't have a lot to show as last week I also worked on my ABC exchange for the SBEBB. The stitching is done and next up is the finishing. I think I'll browse the Focus on Finishing blog for some ideas on that. And I spent some time this weekend quilting. It was another one of those very rainy, very chilly weekends, very spent inside. Although we did have a great dinner out Saturday night with some friends who kindly treated us after hubby had spent some time fixing up their computer problems.

Thanks for all the advice about magnifiers and readers! I tried some cheapie readers at the dollar store actually. The 1+ didn't seem quite strong enough and the 2+ seemed a little too strong. Yes a little bit of Goldilocks going on here, because of course they were out of the 1.5+ style. I don't mind the option of sticking an extra pair of glasses in front of the ones I wear. In fact I do that with my sun glasses. I have fantastic sun glasses that I bought years ago (make that also very expensive sun glasses) from back in the days when I only wore contact lenses and when driving I always pop them on. Works for me! So next time I'm near the dollar store, I'm going to try again. Meanwhile I'm afraid the 40-cts are going to have to wait for daylight stitching!

This is a short posting as work is calling me, its piled high on my desk today!

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Carriage House Samplings

I love these pieces, I really do, I just don't know why I don't seem to get more accomplished on them than what I do. I finally finished up Block 1 of Houses of Hawk Run Hollow, all except for the name and year. I'm leaving out the year, because really who knows when this piece will ever be finished. If I sound frustrated at this point, I am. Its been over a year since I started and I haven't even reached the halfway point.

I still enjoy stitching on this and I have to remember, the joy is in the stitching, not in the finishing. I guess its because there are just so many things out there that I want to do, and as much as I would like to start, I can only work on so many things at a time.

And part of the problem with this one and the CHS Alphabet series, is the 40 count fabric. I love the look of the stitching on this fine count, but my eyes have decided that its a little too fine for comfortable stitching. Which is a quandry because I can still see well enough to read so I don't feel I'm at the point of needing glasses. I tried a magnifier that clamps onto a table and as long as I can get it positioned properly, it works great. But most of the time I can't get it positioned properly. So every time I plunk myself down for the evening, I have to get hubby to help me adjust everything just so and I dare not move until I decide its beddy-bye time (and, sigh, this means no bathroom breaks either). That also means that I have to have everything at my finger tips, all flosses, scissors, snacks, drinks, and of course remote control!

So meanwhile I'm still plodding away at my CHS pieces, slow but sure wins the race......and eventually I'll need those reading glasses!

Monday, April 09, 2007

A Sewing Weekend

It sure wasn't one of those weekends where I wanted to spend much time outdoors. It felt like winter out there! So I had to make the best of my time inside and at my sewing machine. I made myself another project tote bag, this time one with fabrics that matched my sewing box (that is still in the works, waiting for its lid to be attached and various inside pieces to be done). But this tote bag it now done and I'm wondering which project I can use it for....hmmm, maybe something new?

I finished quilting this table runner for my kitchen table, ready in time for our Easter dinner. It was made with a charm pack called 'Santuary' which was a pack of 5" fabric pieces from the Sanctuary fabric line. Since everything is already cut, its so quick to sew it together and then it was just a matter of sandwiching it and machine quilting it into a table runner. Its nice to have something new and fresh for the kitchen.

And here are my completed Twisted Log Cabin blocks from my quilt class last week. These fabrics are called Spring Fling, from the Moda jelly roll pack. Cool looking huh? They are waiting on white sashing with stars at the intersections which I didn't get around to this weekend. A little too much thought needs to go into that since I have 5 colours to work on for the stars, and will need to mark each sashing piece to get the star colours to match up.

Hubby and I went out Saturday night to a local theatre production of Brigadoon. One of Carrie's best friends was starring in it and it was fantastic! We so enjoyed it - the music, the singing, highland dancing and even the bagpipes! It was held in a renovated town hall from 1873, so quite small but full of character. We really have to get out to more of these local productions. Last night hubby had tickets for the Toronto Raptors but basketball isn't really my thing so he took Nick and his girlfriend Kristy and they all enjoyed the game and I enjoyed my quiet evening. I got started on my ABC exchange for the SBEBB! April is going by too quickly for me!!

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Spring Sampler ~ Little House Needleworks

I just realized I don't have pictures of my Jelly Roll quilt blocks... you'll have to wait for those! The class was so much fun and made me wonder why I hadn't been taking more classes. Its so much nicer to sew among a fun group of people than on your own. The day just flew by! I have a little homework to complete before the next 1/2 day class, but that's 3 weeks off so lots of time for that.

When I got home I had some nice mail stash arrive - a package from Mary Kathryn from Ehandcrafts with LHN's Spring Sampler. This came with the new Crescent Colours Belle Soie silks and 32 ct natural linen so how could I wait to start? Here is my little blue bird already done. While the silks really remind me of Gloriana silks in the look, they don't want to lay as nicely as the Gloriana. Another funny thing, the variegation seems to show up much more in the picture than in RL too! How odd? I'm wondering if I should re-do part of the birdie so he doesn't look so chunky??

I must get out tonight for some Easter shopping! I just realized I haven't got anything in for the kids, big as they are, they still look for something from the Easter bunny. And I think I have a pinched nerve in my neck - ouch! I've been stretching and using an ice pack, and of course my workload has suddenly increased hugely, but tomorrow is a holiday so that will help.

Have a wonderful holiday weekend!

Monday, April 02, 2007

Yummy jelly rolls

I have some new pics to share, if only Blogger will cooperate! Is it me, or is Blogger unbearably slow to upload pictures?

This is a jelly roll, not the edible kind that with all those delicious sugary calories. This one will definitely not be added to my hips! Jelly rolls are the name given to 2 1/2" cuts of all the fabrics in a fabric line, this one being called Spring Fling. I think there are 40 fabric prints in total. Isn't it gorgeous! This is going to be used in the quilt class I signed up for tomorrow, for a pattern called Twisted Log Cabin. Marg and I saw saw samples of these at our last quilt block meeting and couldn't resist. Tomorrow is a full day class and in 2 weeks, we finish up with a 1/2 day class. What a great reason to take the day off work.

Next up is my latest finished sock. And I've got to hurry up and finish the other one before Nancy entices me into some new start at the Knitting Frolic Day she is tempting me with. She knows my weaknesses!

And finally my Sampler Gameboard which I managed to pick up this weekend while at a stitching gathering at Marj's house. I got 2 houses, one motif, and some lettering finished up as of Sunday night. Tonight I'll have to get my things together for the class tomorrow! Can't wait....