coming along

Steadily working on My Canada, every free moment I get. Finished the appliqued beaver, and filled in the last spaces with trees.  Now to decide on layout.

Subtle differences, not quite right.

This is the final decision…

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I have now added a white border all the way around.

And it’s time to start pinning.

DSC04099I found some Canada-esk fleece for the back. Maple leaf in a mac jacket print.  That’s Canadian, eh?

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So now for the quilting.  I tried to start planning what/how I would quilt this as I pinned.  Grand plans, but we’ll see how time goes.

Clock-a-ticking, I will start free motion quilting tomorrow night.

 

You can’t always wing it

In general I am a rule follower.  But for some reason I am ok to play with fabric without a pattern or instructions.  I sometimes sketch out a plan, but often I just have an idea in my head and I go for it.  Usually with some measure of success.  Often with frustration and telling myself to plan better.

For my Canada sampler quilt I figured it needed a snowflake.   60 degree triangles, no problem.  Never done them before, but I can give it a go…FAIL

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Yup, this is a funny failure. poor planning and no knowledge.  I have made many other blocks in between, but really wanted a snowflake.

So I made my new 60 degree points. so far so good.

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And then I went online and found a tutorial on 60 degree triangles.  There were some good tips and tricks, and I think it came out pretty well.

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Next blocks I have been putting off are the applique blocks.  It’s not my favorite thing.  This poor beaver looks like he is trying to be a porcupine, but it’s what I needed to get it together.DSC04056

Still stitching.  Maybe I will get to the moose antlers soon.   But time is running out!  I really wanted this done for Canada day.  That is only 12 days away.  Eek!  That’s 6 days off between now and then.  Oh, but there is grade 5 grad one day, B’s party one day, field trip one day, etc.  Hmm, unrealistic goal.  we shall see.

But I was pleased when I laid it all out the other day…DSC04055

This isn’t the final layout, but gives a good idea.  Yay. I really want to sit on this finished on Canada day!

 

bright spot on a rainy day

It’s a steady rain out there.  No need to water the garden.  We have had lots of sunny days, so a day of rain is probably good for all the green growing things out there.

But we all need a bright moment in a rainy day.

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These peonies were split and transplanted from the backyard 4 years ago.  There have been a few blooms over the last 2 years, but this is the first year where there are many upcoming flowers. Yay!

It was very windy on the weekend when I took the photo. Hard to tell the flowers to stand still.

white flower walk

What to do when you need to clear your colour wiring.  Well, not get rid of it, but just give it a switch to push your thinking.

As part of the quilt round robin for my guild, the piece I needed to add to was in colours that are just not me.  I find it hard to be creative when the colours do the opposite of inspiration.

So I needed to clear my head.  The best way to do that is to go outside.

I noticed that my black thorn acacia is flowering.  I love how this big tree produces flowers.  It drops annoying little leaves for about 9 months of the year, but it is a favorite of mine with it’s bright yellow/green foliage.

DSC04033So that got me hunting for white or cream flowers.  My mini rose is in full bloom.

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Along with watering the base, I make sure to shower the whole plant.  Somebody once told me that aphids don’t like it wet, so hopefully this extra shower deters them.

Next was my hanging basket of million bells.  Over the years they have become my standard for hanging basket flowers.

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And last but not least in the backyard, little strawberry flowers.  Ooh and the start of something yummy.

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Clear headed,  I started to pull fabric from my stash.  Pretty quickly I warmed up to this palate of grey scale colours. I even had a few exact fabrics to match the starting block!

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In the end I was pleasantly surprised with how it came out.  I wish I could share, but we are keeping it a surprise until the end reveal.  Part of my desire to be part of a round robin was to push my comfort zone in quilting and colours.  So far so good.

 

ballpark quilting

I even quilt at the ballpark!  and in between games at home.

The baseball t-shirt quilt has come together well.

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next up, to back and quilt.  I decided not to use batting.  There is heavy blue and white fleece as the backing, which I have found is enough for bulk and comfort.

I started with stitching 1/2″ inside each block, but decided it still wasn’t enough to hold it well together.  After a bit of discussion with other quilty friends, I decided to free-motion quilt around each “Lakehill”.  This came together surprisingly fast, with a pretty good result.  Different colour thread to match each shirt.

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I really enjoy free motion quilting, but forget when I haven’t done it in awhile.  Just better do more of it I guess:)

Now for the part I can take to a ball game.  Binding. DSC04030

Half done.  I used to make larger binding, but find that cutting 2 1/4″ strips and pressing that in half makes a nice size edge.   Slightly soft but not too floppy.  The added bonus of doing binding in the stands is to create interest for a potential buyer at the silent auction.  And maybe interest in a commission.  maybe:)

more Canada blocks

I keep writing a list of quilt blocks to make for my Canada quilt, it keeps growing and changing.  I will have to stop at some point.  I bought fleece for the back, so I think I will make that limit the size I get to.

The majority of blocks I am making are purely improv, but once in awhile a true traditional quilt block works. Snail’s trail, slightly altered was a good representation of the waves on our 3 coast lines.

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But typical me, I didn’t quite plan out the size, so had to add a bit to make it to the 12 1/2″ I needed.

I have never made this block before, but love the precision and my imagination goes crazy on colour variations in a big quilt.

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On the improv side I looked at a lot of photos of the northern lights and sketched a few to come up with what I think is a pretty good visual of dancing lights in the arctic sky.

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I would like to perfect this in a big version, with true Aurora borealis colours. One day. To see these lights in person is something I want to do too.

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My boss is away for a week, so I hope to get some major quilting time in next week, Yay!

sumac back

Yay! My Sumac tree is recovering.  Funny how a little tree can draw emotion from me.

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But here it comes, little leaves starting,

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Hopefully it will continue to grow happily into a tree like the old one.

Happy mother’s day to all of you moms out there.  I was “surprised” with waffles and a cup of coffee in bed. And some really cool homemade ( schoolmade would be a better term) gifts.

A string heart, tissue paper flowers and a cedar bark flower.  Awesome!  And my boys said that no matter what, they wouldn’t fight all day.  Well, they tried really hard.  And did really well, but not quite.  I also did my part and tried not to get angry with them.  That’s easy when they don’t fight!  Good day overall.  Feeling very loved.

And I got to have time to sew, today and thru the week.  I am still working on my Canada quilt, but am fitting in the baseball t-shirt quilt for a silent auction for the ballpark.  Research online suggests fusible interfacing for structure when sewing t-shirts together.  Bought that.

I didn’t get any more responses for t-shirts, but got some more old jerseys from the ballpark. Still needed more to make a decent size quilt.  How about a centre piece. Yup.

Here is our logo, and my graph paper plan.

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Then it was just a matter of cut and piece.

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came together really well, sorry about the colour

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Still not quite big enough.  Time to add a few borders. I find that this is the best way to try out border fabrics.

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And it’s coming together pretty well!  I am not sure if I will leave it like this, or add a few strips at top and bottom using the blue and baseball fabrics to make a rectangle. Wait and see.

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Have I mentioned before that I really need a portable design wall, rather than laying quilt pieces out on the kitchen floor.  Too many times my boys run through the kitchen and squares get blown.  Ah well, one day I may even have a sewing room again.  Until then, the kitchen floor it is.

Have a good week ahead.