Sunday, June 29, 2014

Exclamation! Completed

My kids are C-R-A-Z-Y busy during the school year.  Now, the school year has ended and it is time for me to squeeze in some quilting time.  Yes, I realize I am the opposite of every other quilter on the planet.  What can I say?  I am the only quilter I know who dislikes yard work.  I haven't been completely out of practice though.  My Exclamation! quilt just arrived back from the long arm.  Thanks Rhonda!  Time to bind before this lovely quilt gets raffled off!

I am currently taking a few minutes to blog while I am washing beautiful red fabric for the Canadian Maple quilt from Patrick Lose Studios I am about to start. But first, I need to patiently wait for the dryer!!

Happy Canada Day!  And happy sewing.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Fabriholics Anonymous continued........

My last post, committing to a 6 month destashing was so fast, I didn't even share the pledge or my UFO list!  What can I say.  I didn't want to give myself a chance to change my mind.  Here it is from Making Rebecca Lynne. I have made an adjustment (or two) to suit my habit a little bit.
- To use the Stash I already have!
- Finish UFOs without distraction
- Stop the insanity of constantly buying the latest and greatest fabric.(especially feeding my cardinal and red fabric fetish)
- Save the $$ I spend on stashing.(to pay for my new sewing machine)
- Destash the fabrics (and UFOs) that I realize I am never going to use/finish
1) No fabric purchases for 6 months beginning January 1, 2014.   
2) At 6 months reevaluate status and decide whether to keep going for full year.  Evaluation July 1, 2014.
3) Create a UFO list and complete them!
4) Exceptions
  • Backing: purchasing a backing to finish a quilt top is permissible.  However, attempting to use fabric in your possession for a backing is preferable.
  • Books and Magazine purchases are allowed as they are not fabric.  Notions acceptable too. HOWEVER, since I have way too many magazines and notions, minimize any purchases.
Making a UFO list sounded very depressing.  Partly because the list is so long and partly because I have done that in the past with little or no success.  As a bit of motivation, I joined pinterest and created 2 boards.  The first are some pics of my quilts.  But the second are pictures of quilts that I either have started, have a kit for or have made mental plans to use my stash toward.  It is a work in process.  But the visual representation is helping. My own special list!  Although there is a lot of guilt wrapped up in the those pictures.

There is a little hitch in my plans.  My third baby (aka my Bernina 230) could use a little TLC.  Tomorrow it heads to the shop for a good cleaning.  Until it comes back, I think my rotary cutter and I will be great friends!  I can get prepared for my spring retreat!!  Example #1 is a lot of 10" blocks (about 160ish) for Guild cuddle quilts.  Part of my fabric binge in the last week of 2013.  Rag quilts, here I come! At least once my machine is feeling better.

Happy Quilting!

Friday, January 3, 2014

Fabriholics Anonymous

My name is Diane and I am a Fabriholic.

In my last post I talked about how I wasn't going to make any "sweeping" resolutions about not buying fabric this year.  Seemed very rationale.... until I realized I have purchased 21 meters of fabric since Christmas!  I can tell you about the incredible deals I found.  Seriously.... $4 a yard for lovely flannel! $7/meter for the perfect Northcott backing for another project! In the end I am simply rationalizing my addiction.  I spent an entire hour today debating the purchase of the Rhapsody in Red and Blue fabric from Connecting Threads.  I have also planned on attending another sale/open house at a local fabric store tomorrow.  The madness must end!!!

I had read Rebecca Lynne's post already and hadn't taken the bait.  But with the extension today I knew I simply had to get my act together.  I spent time today cutting that beautiful flannel into 10 inch squares to make cuddle quilts I have talked about for ages.  I then cut the first month of my Border Creek Station Mystery Quilt.  Notice how none of these were on my January list :)  Or on any UFO list! The point is, I have a fabric problem and I am using this challenge as an opportunity.  Now, to put my UFO list together!! 

Happy Quilting!

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Tis the Season... for New Year's Resolutions!!

I have had a very interesting past month.  Okay.  So not true.  BUT during my recuperation time of not being able to work, sew or type (for longer than a sentence of two at least) I have had a lot of time to think.  Not necessarily positive or productive thinking.  But time to think.  Add to that a milestone birthday coming my way. Yikes!!

The result is a little too much time to focus on the aspects of my life I would like to change.  I WILL NOT bore you with all my nasty little habits.  But you already know my biggest quilting "flaws":
1/ No follow thru to complete projects (aka the queen of the ufo)
2/ Fabric collector

Instead of sweeping promises I can never keep, such as "I won't buy fabric this year" or "I will finish all my UFO's in 2014", I have decided to take a much softer approach.  I am going to pick a quilting and a non-quilting objective every month.  Nothing monumental.  Just an attempt to check some items off of my list in 2014.  What can I say?  I was inspired by Making Christmas and The Happiness Project :)

January's Objectives:
 - finish the top to my son's "Out of this World" Quilt AND bring it to the long arm quilter
-  Book (and actually show up) to see my financial planner

My inspiration was starting (and actually finishing!) the below yo yo tree for Christmas this year.

Happy New Year!!! And Happy Quilting

Friday, November 1, 2013

Durham Trillium Quilt Guild - Tri-Annual Quilt Show!!

This weekend is my Guild's tri-annual quilt show.  So much fun!!  Fantastic quilts and a lot of inspiration.  But the best parts??  The vendors :)  I finally found the perfect quilt for my baby boy.  Honestly, I am so pleased!  The sailboat quilt I had been working on is simply too young for him anymore.  That's what happens when it takes almost 4 years to make a quilt. So  now, I am starting all over again next weekend at the retreat with an astronomy quilt I bought the kit for today.  The fabric even glows in the dark for a short period of time. More picks to come soon!

I also bought fabric for 4 Christmas pillowcases, a Christmas pattern book and a large bag from the Guild's boutique store.  And that is only day 1! I actually exceeded my budget by 10 am!  Yikes!! 

Well sewing this weekend will be tough.  Regardless, here is my Making Christmas list.  More additions than completions.

Making Christmas List (Week 4):
Quilt for my son - Warp Speed
Exclamation Quilt for Ice Fyre Raffle - Still two borders left
Espresso Christmas  Ornaments - No Progress
Cardinal Pillow from this month's McCall's Quilting!!!! Fabric chosen, embroidery almost done
Bag for my daughter for Christmas - No progress
Christmas Presents for Teachers - Napkins Complete!!
Addition: Coasters to match Christmas napkins
Christmas Present for my fantastic sitter - No progress; Still no idea what to make.....
Addition: Other remaining 9 blocks for my Northcott BoM Quilt. It is a little backward, but I am inspired now that the log cabins are complete
Addition: 4 Christmas Pillowcases for my kids - a purchase from the Quilt Show

Happy Quilting!!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Check!! Christmas Napkins Done!

Well Making Christmas is "making" me obsessed with my list! 

I have a heavy November ahead and a December where I won't physically be able to sew. That means I have a lot of pressure on me (self induced, of course) to finish my list.  I can officially cross my children's Teachers' gifts off the list.  Yeah!!  Although, I am thinking a matching set of coasters....  Too much?  Yes, I have reread my first couple sentences.  But I have the fabric.  It would be such a shame to not add them to the package of 4 of these Christmas Tree napkins :)  Right?

This weekend is the Durham Trillium Quilt Show in Oshawa, Ontario.  A weekend of quilts... but no quilting.  Still, I am so excited to see the wonderfully creative work of my friends and fellow quilters.

Happy Quilting!

Monday, October 28, 2013

Log Cabins - A quilter's staple

This has been a busy week!  Actually, looking at my calendar for the next month I am a little overwhelmed to be honest.  And when I get stressed I sew!  Luckily, my calendar includes a much needed quilting retreat.  This past weekend, I attended a Twilight Tea!  A fun way to hang out with great friends, great food and sewing until midnight.  I wish I had more items crossed off of my list.  However, I do have 24 log cabin blocks (just like the one below) to show for my sewing adventure as an update to my Making Christmas list.  But now, it is time for sleep before a week of work and children's activities.

Making Christmas List (Week 3):
Quilt for my son (very much past due!) - Backing fabric arrived from Connecting Threads on Friday!
Exclamation Quilt for Ice Fyre Raffle (UFO from my last post) - Still two borders left
Espresso Christmas  Ornaments - No Progress
Log Cabins for my Northcott BoM Quilt - Complete!!!
Cardinal Pillow from this month's McCall's Quilting!!!! Fabric chosen, embroidery started
Bag for my daughter for Christmas - No progress
Christmas Presents for Teachers - Almost done!!!
Christmas Present for my fantastic sitter - No progress; Not even an idea of what to make!!!
Addition: Other remaining 9 blocks for my Northcott BoM Quilt (what can I say, I am inspired now that the log cabins are complete)

If anyone has any ideas what I can make for my sitter to go with her present, please let me know in the comments section.

Happy Quilting!

Monday, October 21, 2013

And the UFO's Grow......

This week, thanks to my Making Christmas list, I have been listening to the hum of my sewing machine for about 30 to 60 minutes every night.  I am 10 strips out of 15 into my 23 log cabin blocks for my Northcott BoM. A lot of sewing but still so much further to go.  PLUS, I only have 3 of my 12 actual BoM blocks done.  However, this time last week I just had a bunch of strips of fabric, so I am focusing on the progress.  As slow as it is....

I have made progress on other items on my list, but it has meant I have started two new UFO's.  The fabric below is for my cardinal pillows. This is all from my stash, which makes me very happy.

I also added to my stash this week.  I decided to make Tree Napkins for my children's teachers.  That required new fabric, right?  Of course!  The plan is to use something from my stash as the second fabric.  Once I actually make a decision, I will be sure to share.

Making Christmas List (Week 2):

Quilt for my son (very much past due!) - Backing fabric ordered from Connecting Threads!
Exclamation Quilt for Ice Fyre Raffle (UFO from my last post) - Two borders left!
Espresso Christmas  Ornament - No Progress
Log Cabins for my Northcott BoM Quilt - 10 of 15 logs attached
Cardinal Pillow from this month's McCall's Quilting!!!! Fabric chosen, embroidery started
Bag for my daughter for Christmas - No progress
Christmas Presents for Teachers - Fabric Purchased!
Christmas Present for my fantastic sitter - No progress

Wow.  I actually made progress!!  Thanks to Janine and Rebecca for the inspiration!!

Happy Quilting!

Monday, October 14, 2013

"Making Christmas" List

I am enjoying my Thanksgiving by taking some quiet time to read some of my favorite blogs.  The hustle and bustle of the spending time with family and enjoying a turkey and apple pie was yesterday so today I should be relaxing, right?  Well on my reading adventures, I was inspired by Kristy at Quiet Play, which led me to read (and now follow) Janine at Rainbow Hare Quilts.

There are less than 2 months until Christmas!!!!!  So here is my list.

Making Christmas List:

Quilt for my son (very much past due!)
Exclamation Quilt for Ice Fyre Raffle (UFO from my last post)
Espresso Christmas Ornaments
Log Cabins for my Northcott BoM Quilt
Cardinal Pillow from this month's McCall's Quilting!!!!
Bag for my daughter for Christmas
Christmas Presents for Teachers
Christmas Present for my fantastic sitter

Just looking at this list is making me fill a little queasy! Maybe more so because I have only started two of these projects and have no idea what to do for the my kids' teachers and sitter.  I am debating doing the Christmas tree napkins or Christmas paper pieced coasters.  I always give the teachers Chapters gift cards as the main gift.  If they are overwhelmed by "stuff" they can always donate them to the school.  But this year I would love to add something special (but quick!).  Any ideas would be greatly appreciated!

Well, I can't figure out how to put the darn button on my blog (urgh!!) but I am definitely in!  Please be more skilled than me and go to Janine and/or Rebecca's blog, add the button and link up!

Happy Quilting!

Sunday, October 13, 2013


Beds can make the best "design walls".  In most cases, I am designing for a bed quilt anyway, so this is the best way to try it out!  I had laid out the blocks to the quilt on my Mom's bed while I was home in Newfoundland.  Usually I like to label my blocks to ensure I put it together just as I planned.  However, I have learned that my camera can be my best friend for these exercises.  And my baby girl never misses a chance to join the fun!

This quilt is scheduled to be donated to my daughter's synchro skating team as a fundraising raffle.  I am behind (as always), so now instead of a raffle for this year's season, it will have to be next summer/fall.  Good news is I am further ahead than this picture would suggest.  Two borders left on the top.  Then I need to decide if I am going to quilt it or have it quilted.  If only I owned my dream machine, the Tiara, this would not even be a thought :)

Happy Quilting!

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Newest Edition to the Family

This baby quilt is for a special addition to the family, our great-niece.  Her big sister already had a quilt, but I believe every newcomer deserves their very own quilt full of love!

I really like the simplicity of the Twister. My daughter enjoys 'putting the puzzle' back together after cutting up the squares so I can resew them. This quilt using the large version was a snap.  I have seen some beautiful versions of a wreath and a heart that I cannot wait to try with the smaller Twister!

Happy Quilting!

Monday, August 6, 2012

I Made Myself a Deal

Happy Monday!

Like everyone else out there that quilts, I have a job and a family.  Trying to find time to do everything is tough. And if you have ever read my blog, you know that I am not good at finishing things.  Luckily, that is not a characteristic I take to work with me.   :)  It does, however, apply to my quilting (and housework).

So I have made a deal with myself.  A bet if you will. 

I have to complete 5 quilt tops/flimsies:

Autumn Ridge
Cambridge Square
Sailboats for Joseph
Egg Money Quilt
Big Sister Addie

AND finish the Northcott Block of the Month.

When that happens (about May 2013 due to the BoM), I am buying myself the Babylock Jane to quilt them all!!!

My pennies are already saved.  I had been saving for the past few years to buy a long arm.  However after completing some house renovations, I lost every spot that had previously been large enough for such a beast.  So a mid arm it is!  My only issue now is getting over the guilt of buying a machine given I have only completed two baby quilts in 2012. Therefore, my little challenge to myself!

Wish me luck!  Happy Quilting!

Block Number 2!

They multiply!! I was so inspired by how well the first block went together, I couldn't consider doing anything else until I finished Northcott Block #2!!  Block #3 is already cut and waiting on my sewing table to get a little peace, quiet and patience :)

I love the Marti Michell templates so much!!  But cutting out one block at a time is NOT my thing.  Other than hand applique quilts, like Piecemakers, my preference is to cut out a quilt from start to finish and then sew.  Maybe a sample block.  But nothing like this!!

Any Sampler Lovers out there??  Anyone else doing this quilt?

I am off to get some Work work done and watch the Canada / US Soccer game.  Go Canada!!!

Happy Quilting!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Northcott Block of the Month - Block 1!!

I have been away for a few months.  Away from my blog, but mostly from my sewing machine.  Busy at work & busy with my kids' soccer and skating.  Just plain busy.

I went to Sew Have Fun today to pick up blocks 3 & 4 for the Northcott Block of the Month.  I still had not even cut a piece of fabric on Block 1.  Until today!  I have a fear of cutting fabric.  Especially if the fabric is in a very limited amount and one wrong cut will mean big trouble.  Maybe that is why I usually buy an quarter of a meter..... okay, an extra meter...... of every fabric, for every project.  No wonder I have such a large stash!!

Well as you can see, I changed all of that today.  Block 1 is complete!  And thanks to the Marti Michell templates, it was easy to cut and easier to piece!  The rest of the blocks still frighten me, but now that I have Block One under my belt, who knows?  Maybe Block 2 won't take another three months!

Happy Quilting!!

Sunday, January 29, 2012

UFO Update ....................

My UFOs - Updated 1/29/2012

Here is my list of shame. I don't think it looks a whole lot different than when I did this list almost two years ago. Yikes!! If anything, I think it is growing!!!! My goal for 2012 is to get this list down to 15 items. Wish me luck!!


Sandwiched/Quilting Needs to be Completed
Baby Bargello - Batik (Pieced)
Spring Cleaning - Thimblebery Fabrics (Pieced)

Quilt Top Completed
Big Block Flannel Quilt (Pieced)
Charmed Hearts (Pieced)
Fire Escape - Atkinson Designs (Pieced)

Needs Borders/Square Up
Sailboat Quilt for my Son's bed (Machine Applique)

Blocks Completed

Friendship Star - Thimbleberry Lakeside (Pieced)

Pieces of Fabric in Great Organized Containers!

2010 Piecemakers (Hand Applique)
1998 Piecemakers (Hand Applique)
Pretty Dresses in 30s (Hand Applique)
Dresdon Plate - Thimbleberries Lakeside and Lodge (Hand Applique)
McKenna Ryan - "Journey to Light" (Machine Applique)
"Winding Roads" Quiltmaker Scrap Pattern (Pieced)
"Sweet Hearts" McCalls Quick Quilts Pattern (Pieced)
Thimbleberries Block of the Month (2008)
Elm Creek Quilts - Olde Silver Thimble Bookclub (Pieced)
Traditional Sampler (Mixed Methods)
Moda Madiera Jelly Roll Quilt (Pieced)
Hearts and Flowers (Machine Applique)
Double Wedding Ring - Fons and Porter pre-cut kit (Pieced)

Uncut Kits or Fabric
1999 Piecemakers - Time and Season (Hand Applique)
30's miniature quilt kit - Dresden Plate (Hand Applique)
Art to Heart - "I Believe" (Machine Applique)
Northcott "Cambridge Square" (Pieced)
"Bali with Love"(Machine Applique)
Row Your Quilt (Mixed)
McKenna Ryan - Petals of my Heart (Machine Applique)

Misc Projects
Too many more kits of bags, chatelaines, wallhangings, journal covers etc. to possibly name

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Like Mother, Like Daughter

When I was little, I always wanted to do whatever my Mom was doing. I was lucky in that my Mom worked from home as a bookkeeper until I was in grade 7. I am not sure how lucky she thought it was, but I always wanted to 'help'. As I got older, I worked summers with her (and my Dad) and followed on in the financial (and automotive) footsteps. My need to be just like my Mom extended into her hobbies as well. When she started plastic canvas, I wanted to do it. Ceramics? I must have driven her crazy. But when I absolutely, positively fell in love was when my Mom took a Sampler Quilt Class. I was 19 and hooked. When I moved to Ontario after university my Mom bought me my first sewing machine as an apartment warming present. And I signed up for my own Sampler quilt class. (Just in case you were wondering...14 years later and it isn't completed yet either.)

My daughter is 8 and just like me when I was little. She loves to help and is fascinated by fabric and quilting. One day while we were fabric shopping at Sew Have Fun, she saw Edith was teaching a sewing class to two little girls. They were making bathingsuit cover ups!!! Seriously? I find flannel frightening! 8 year olds thankfully have no fear. So once a week, off she goes! She has made shorts (below), a denim jumper, a fantastic backpack, a blankie for her teddy bear, and placemats for me and her baby brother. It is just incredible to watch! The most spectacular thing is how she designs her projects. Her creativity is absolutely amazing! I just can't wait to see what she comes up with next!

Happy Quilting!

Monday, January 2, 2012

Fire Escape.... and my love of Batiks

There was a time when I hated batiks. Serious amount of strong dislike. I had no idea why anyone would want 'tie-dye' fabric to make a quilt. And the idea that anyone would take a chance that a piece they would cut would not be exactly the same as the next piece. Madness I tell you!!! Back then the owner at my favorite quilt store would tell me that one day I would feel differently. And every time a new shipment of batiks would arrive she would lovingly show them to me. After some time I grew to appreciate batiks for the process and the art form. But still, you would never see one of my quilts with a batik included. Let alone a whole quilt of it!!

Then one day, something magical happened. I enjoy applique. Hand applique usually. But one day I saw McKenna Ryans's A Journey to Light! It was truly an experience for me. I decided I had to make it! So I asked Joy (quilt store owner mentioned above) if we could do a class or at least a kit. What I hadn't considered... was that McKenna Ryan's kits were very batik focused. I didn't care. I loved it! And with the dozen of hours I spent tracing, fusing and cutting shades of black and grey batik that had all looked the same to me a month earlier, I fell in love.

Now, I frequently chose batiks for projects. What I love is that every piece you cut is different. Funny huh? Quilting is just like every other part of your life. You grow, learn, mature and your tastes change. At a quilt show in Peterborough last year I saw a simple for Fire Escape and loved the use of batiks in the sample. Most of my batiks are still used in applique and scenary quilts like McKenna Ryan or Piecemakers. This is an Atkinson Design pattern. I love how easy to follow their patterns are when I just need a break from working!!

Now I just need to take this project from flimsie to complete :)

Happy Quilting!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Go Baby Go!!

For Christmas, I bought my mom an Accuquilt Go Baby. We had so much fun trying it out!! Okay, I cannot actually speak for my Mom.... but my kids and I had a ball! I love machine applique so I took the opportunity while my mom was here to use it to cut out flowers and hearts (with fusible already on!!) to make a throw for a little girl. Very likely a cuddle quilt for my Guild. All I need is to cut out the background blocks and iron on the perfectly cut (and did I mention already fused!!) pieces! Honestly I was really impressed. Less than an hour to fuse and cut 35 pieces!

My Mom went back to Newfoundland with her Go Baby in its cute pink case. She has already cut out a quilt of her own. I can't wait to hear (and see) what she does in the future!! Maybe if I can ever get through my huge list of UFOs and flimsies I'll think about getting one for myself :)

Happy Quilting!

Happy New Year!!

As is my tradition (or at least it seems to be becoming one) I did my Christmas sewing this year AFTER Christmas. On my guild retreat in October, we did a quick class on Christmas Tree napkins. My intent had been to do sets for gifts, but with work and Christmas prep..... it did not happen. However, my Mom and I had a chance to do a little sewing on Boxing Day and the result is a set for her and a set for me! The teachers will just have to wait until next Christmas :)

Such a simple pattern..... but a beautiful touch on the table.

Happy New Year and Happy Quilting!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

2 Days at Home

My children's sitter is enjoying a well deserved vacation. As a result, I booked two vacation days of my own to spend with my babies. Would have been a great couple days, but my baby girl got sick with a sore throat and a fever. Since we were house bound, I was able to get some quality time cutting two quilts in preparation for the retreat with my guild in a couple weeks. I prefer to do my cutting at the kitchen counter, so this was making the best of a bad situation. I now have two quilts ready to sew!

This weekend I tried organizing my very disorganized sewing room and came across a bunch of kits I had not completed (or started). One was for a hand towel dress for over the oven handle. I have seen these done in the prettiest fabrics and with the nicest accessories. Today I finally got down to business. So cute!!! I would love to make more of these. Now to find the time, without having to have a sick baby :(

Happy Quilting!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Welcome Baby Duncan!

My grand nephew made his entrance into the world yesterday! A beautiful 8 lb, 3 oz healthy baby boy. I am so excited!! And happy that I have finally completed his quilt. It would have been such a different quilt had I known he was a he! However, I have no intention of starting over from scratch. I tried minky for the first time for the backing and I love it!! Not sure I don't want one of these myself :)

So now I definitely have to move on to finishing/making a quilt for my 4 year old. Sad to say I still have not done that. He is very interested in my quilting and always wants to help. And he is not unaware that I have made quilts for others but none for him. To ease my conscience today I made him a pillow case out of the some of the metres and metres of Cars fabric I have purchased over the years. Pretty sure it will never make a quilt, but I should make the fabric into dozens of pillow cases. It definitely makes for very happy little boys!

Happy Quilting!!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

What's Your Favorite Part of the Quilt Process?

I have finally machine sewn the binding on the baby quilt I have mentioned in the past couple of posts. I am looking forward to the quiet time I will enjoy tonight after my babies are in bed when I can cuddle up on the sofa with the quilt, needle and thread. Hand sewing the binding is my favorite part of the quilt process.

Don't get me wrong. I love picking out my next project, fondling the new, unwashed fabric and cutting every piece in anticipation of putting it back together into something brand new. But there is nothing like putting those last stitches into your quilt! It is such a personal thing. And the sense that a project is complete.... well that is fantastic! As the Queen of the UFO, I don't get to feel that sense of accomplishment enough!

Well, off to finish up the evening with my babes before I get to enjoy an evening of Drop Dead Diva and binding my quilt. What's your favorite part of the quilting process?

Happy Quilting!!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Time to quilt!

Happy Weekend Everyone!

So I missed having the quilt completed by the baby shower. I am very sad about that. However, the little one hasn't arrived yet, so I still have time. The top has been completed and sandwiched. Time to set up the table for a day of quilting!

If I didn't already have a time crunch for this baby quilt to keep me motivated, I have two new projects that I am itching to start. One is a "quilt as you go" quilt sampler strongly inspired by Amanda Jean's blog post last week and the other is a 30's quilt from Eleanor Burns book Egg Money Quilts! Because, what the Queen of UFO's really needs..... are two new projects.

Happy Quilting!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Back to the Sewing Room...

I have been away from my blog and my sewing room for months! This past week I've been on a mission for a beautiful baby who will be arriving in my family sometime in the next couple of weeks. I have 5 days to put the top together, sandwich, quilt and bind before the Shower. My job and beautiful children may get in the way :) Wish me luck!!

More updates are coming soon, but here are the pics to prove I am back at the sewing machine today.

Happy Thanksgiving to my fellow Canadians!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Durham Trillium Quilters' Guild

I can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel of a very busy few months at work. Unlike the rest of my quilting friends, I rarely quilt after Christmas and love to quilt when everyone else is planning their spring gardens. I was not born with a green thumb!

I did want to take the opportunity to post the link to the new website for my Guild. Have a ever mentioned I am part of a Guild? If not, that is a huge oversight on my part! We are a "more the merrier" type of group. I am very excited about the spring retreat in April. Three days to get myself back on track is exactly what I need!

Happy Spring and Happy Sewing!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Away for a month? Really?

I have been busy. Very very busy. But apparently not busy quilting or writing my blog :( Along with two wonderful children and a fabulous hubbie, I have a job I love. But at times it can be very challenging. These days working and hanging with my babies is about as much personal time as I get! I even missed a quilting class yesterday..... and didn't even remember until today!! I need to get myself back on track!

As my happy thought for the day, I want to share a Paddington snowball/9 patch quilt I made for one of my best friend's baby boy. This isn't a newly finished quilt. It has been complete for almost a year. However, it makes me happy thinking about that cute baby boy. Today I just need that thought to inspire me to work on some other projects today.

Happy Quilting!

Monday, January 24, 2011

I Chose Red!

I was on a roll. I just had to put on the two borders and I would have a completed top! My daughter and I went to a new local quilt shop (Sew Have Fun!) and found a Kona red that is perfect for the inner border.... and the binding.... and the backing!! I love RED!!!! At the same time, she witnessed a children's Learn to Sew class that she just has to join! A great Saturday! We came home, put the fabric in the washer (I am always a prewasher, but with red fabric it is a requirement).... and then it happened.........

I turned on the computer to quickly check for updates on the Moda Bake Shop site. Progressive Dinner!! If you have not been following this Blogging Dream, fix that right away!! Some of my favorite bloggers, like Amanda Jean and Moda Lissa are involved, but I have also found a bunch of great new blogs. So instead of sewing this week, I have been reading other people's blogs! Although I am disappointed I haven't done a lot of sewing this weekend, I have done a lot of great reading :) Go check it out and put your name in to win the new book and the great Moda precuts!!!

Only two more days of Progressive Dinner and I'll get to my own sewing and have those borders on so I can sandwich my quilt this weekend and have it completed for Valentine's Day. That is my challenge to myself!

Anyone else have a challenge they are working toward?

Happy Quilting!!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Decisions, Decisions

I have been in love with the same Moda layer cake for more than a year. Each time I looked at it, I had the incredible urge to buy it. But in my head, I could hear that little voice that says "You have so much fabric. Don't even think about it!" Well, after months and months, I gave in and became the proud owner of a Moda "Love Is In the Air" layer cake. The question was then, what to do with this fabulous assortment of fabric?

As soon as I got home, I jumped on Moda Bake Shop looking for inspiration. I love that site!! Then I saw it. Charming Hearts. Although the pattern is done in charm squares (therefore.... the name), a layer cake makes up easier and a little less scrappy. This is what it looks like so far, pieced on my design wall.

The pattern now calls for a dark mini inner border and then a scrappy outer border using the remainder of the layer cake/charms. What I am struggling with is what color to use as the inner border and binding. First I thought RED! But I am having such a difficult time matching the 'right' red, that now I am thinking chocolate brown maybe? Any ideas would be greatly accepted and appreciated!! :)

Happy Quilting!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Belated B-Day Gift for My Sister

For my sister's birthday this year, she requested a bag. Not just any bag. I had a picture she had taken on her blackberry and a challenge. It took months to figure out the picture was of the Miranda Bag from Lazy Girl Designs. The day I found the pattern, I was absolutely relieved..... and terrified. I quilt, but I do not do clothes or bags. Luckily, although my sister just loved the look of the bag, I loved the easy to follow pattern!! It was late for her birthday and Christmas, but I have finished it!! The pattern had step by step instructions with lots of pictures. Perfect for the visually oriented, like me.

One learning from my adventure. Although I love batiks and I love this bag, next time around I would chose a more consistently colored fabric. The great thing about batiks is how the fabric color moves and no piece is exactly the same. The thing that sucks about using batiks in a bag that needs four identical blocks is that no piece of fabric is exactly the same! It is more obvious in the picture than when you actually look at the bag in person, but still a note for next time!

Happy Quilting!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Sewing with my Daughter

Today had a bit of a crumby start. An early morning at gymnastics isn't special, but I have a cold that is kicking me pretty hard... so it was a struggle. It is REALLY cold today, so the kids had cabin fever. For my daughter, who is 7, that means a day of sighs followed by "I'm bored!" As I was held up in my sewing room, trying not to spread my germs (that is my story and I'm sticking to it!!) she came in with those sad eyes that break my heart. The result was a great mommy & baby girl day!!

Since she got her sewing machine for Christmas, I have taken a lot of tips from the site If you have read my blog or know me, you can probably guess that I do not do great at simple, "finish in a day" projects. Mostly, finishing any project isn't easy. Finding a way to teach Katie to sew while not loading my perfectionism "issues" on her was easier with this site.

Today was an awesome success for me and for her. What a wonderful day!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!!

Merry Christmas Everyone!

Today as I scramble to prepare for tomorrow's festivities and finish one last quilting present, I thought I would take a moment to throw some good cheer out into the universe!!

I will make sure to post the pics of my two quilted presents as soon as they have made their way to their new home.... but until then.... it is a well guarded (and incomplete) secret!!

Enjoy your time with friends and family! I will be enjoying the season, while also missing loved ones on The Rock!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Those Darn UFOs!!!

I am currently sitting in my sewing room watching reruns of Sex and The City.... when I should be working on my unfinished projects...... or at least working. Instead I am reading blogs about other people finishing their UFOs!

In the past month I have finished my Beatles quilt, finished the top for my Oriental Elegance quilt (which is now with a long arm quilter!!), and finished two wall hanging tops. All of this progress would be incredible had I not gone to the Creative Sewing Festival in Toronto and a local shop hop in the same time frame. I admit nothing..... but there may be a few more pieces of fabric to fondle in my stash and a few more projects.

In fact, the reason I am sitting and not sewing is I am trying to restrain myself from starting to cut the flannel I bought Friday on the shop hop to start my first rag quilt. I found great instructions on a blog by Jen Yu that were so clear even I got it!!! And what a fabulous way to use those smaller pieces of batting that are too small for anything else!

I am not sure what I am going to do but I am going to spend 15 minutes sewing right now! Great advice from several of the blogs about finishing UFOs which I plan on following tonight!

If there is anyone out there that is actually reading my blog I would LOVE to hear your advice on reducing the amount of UFOs in your sewing room! Or at least to hear that someone else has them!!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Baby Bargello!

It took me a while to develop a love for Batiks. Now, I want to use them everywhere I can! Making a baby quilt out of them was likely not the most practical thing I have ever made. It is currently sandwiched and ready to be quilted. I started a few weeks ago using InvisiFil. I love it for my handwork. It amazes me how it dissolves into my hand applique and I wanted to test it on machine quilting in the ditch on the batik. I did love the way it disappeared. However, although it will likely never see a baby, it just felt wrong. So I have pulled out the quilting and need to start over again with cotton.

The more I learn and experiment, the more I am pulled back to traditional quilting techniques, patterns and cotton thread!

But I am closer and closer to finishing another project on my UFO list!!

Happy Quilting!

Monday, November 8, 2010

All You Need Is Love.... and great family!

My brother-in-law turned 50 a few weeks ago. To celebrate this occasion, I had made him a Beatles quilt I had seen in a Fons and Porter magazine a while back. It is a crazy, psychedelic quilt with colors that gave me headaches. However, he is such a lover of the Beatles I just couldn't resist!!

I am lucky to have married into a very large family. Although it will take me 20 years to complete quilts for all my sister-in-laws, brother-in-laws, nieces, and nephews, it is a challenge I have slowly started to work toward! 3 down, 20+ (and growing) to go!!

The real catch is that I have a hard time finishing projects, so I really need to love fabric and a pattern to see it through. Given these were novelty fabrics, they didn't exactly fit into my "fabric fondling". However, sometimes you just need to suck it up (buttercup)!

Finishing this project and giving it to my brother-in-law made me an emotional puddle!! Although it isn't my favorite quilt in terms of fabric, it is one of the best "quilt gift" moments ever!!

Friday, September 3, 2010


I had a realization today as to why I haven't updated my blog recently. Seems to be the same reason my UFO room just grows. It isn't a lack of discipline or an inability to follow through with things I start. Both are qualities that I think make me good at doing my job.

I also don't think it is about finding time. Regardless of if you work inside or outside of the home, that is an issue for everyone, right? Yet some of the busiest people I know (and you know who you are) are the most accomplished quilters with regard to both volume and quality.

My mental (and physical) block seems to be that I am a bit of a perfectionist. If I can't have the perfect project, I just don't want to finish it. Blogging seems to be the same. An inability to think of the perfect post with the perfect pictures..... and I just don't update.

So..... time to loosen up. Summer is over, school starts on Monday. Time to get back into a rountine. My sister asked me to make her a batik bag for her birthday (which is now only 2 weeks away!!!). Time to buy fabric and start sewing!

Enjoy the long weekend!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Pretty Dresses

I am counting down the days until I get to head home to Newfoundland for my summer vacation. There are a lot of reasons why I love to go home. The beautiful sights. Being able to actually see the stars at night. It is nice to go to a grocery store and recognize most of the people I see...... even if those people frequently mistake me for my sister. That will be really fun this time as we will both be home for the week with our families!

I love to sit and watch the news with my dad and quilt with my mom. There are a couple quilt stores that have opened since I moved away. There is a relatively new one in Pasadena I am looking forward to checking out while I am on the Rock!

I have 5 more sleeps and a lot to do before I get on a plane. However, I have a UFO to work on while I am away! It is a hand applique quilt called Pretty Dresses. It is 16 blocks done in fabulous 30`s fabric. I have a weakness for 30`s (and anything Moda, Thimbleberries, Northcott or most batiks!!). I have basted all my blocks to take with me. I don`t think the nice people at Westjet will appreciate my scissors, needles and other quilting tools..... so I`ll wait until I reach Deer Lake to work on it. I have 3 blocks completed, which I thought I would share. The goal is to have all the blocks completed during my vacation! Quite the challenge as I`ll really only have an hour or two here and there to work on them when my babes are in bed.

Below is a link to the fabulous book where I got the pattern. This quilt is the cover of the book so you can check out what the completed project may look like.

Off to do more packing (and maybe sneak in a little sewing) before I head to bed!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

UFOs - 27 Projects and Counting?

The process of writing this blog is eye opening. Those who know me may not be surprised. Okay, likely even they will be at least a little surprised by the number of my UFOs. I have discovered I am completely incapable of finishing a project! How did this happen? And more importantly, how can I fix it?

Step 1
Document my Unfinished Projects
Where do I begin?? Apparently I need to shame myself by admitting my dirty little secret. Document it so I can't ignore it anymore. But how? Do I catalogue my projects by technique? Stage of completion? Do I include the kits of smaller projects that I have not even begun? How about fabric without a "home"? Mystery solved! Apparently I spend so much time thinking about my projects (and fondling fabric) that I never actually do anything!

I have spent spare moments in the last two days looking at my sewing room, searching for an answer and simply feeling overwhelmed by the clutter and incompletion. No time like the present. I am sure I will find more as I go along. I am not even going to open my closet :)


Sandwiched/Quilting Needs to be Completed
Baby Bargello - Batik (Pieced)
Spring Cleaning - Thimblebery Fabrics (Pieced)

Quilt Top Completed Big Block Flannel Quilt (Pieced)

Needs Borders/Square Up
Sailboat Quilt for my Son's bed (Machine Applique)

In Rows
Oriental Elegance (Pieced)

Blocks Completed

Friendship Star - Thimbleberry Lakeside (Pieced)

Pieces of Fabric in Great Organized Containers!

The Beatles Quilt (Pieced)
2010 Piecemakers (Hand Applique)
1998 Piecemakers (Hand Applique)
Pretty Dresses in 30s (Hand Applique)
Dresdon Plate - Thimbleberries Lakeside and Lodge (Hand Applique)
McKenna Ryan - "Journey to Light" (Machine Applique)
"Winding Roads" Quiltmaker Scrap Pattern (Pieced)
"Sweet Hearts" McCalls Quick Quilts Pattern (Pieced)
Thimbleberries Block of the Month (2008)
Elm Creek Quilts - Olde Silver Thimble Bookclub (Pieced)
Traditional Sampler (Mixed Methods)
Moda Madiera Jelly Roll Quilt (Pieced)

Uncut Kits or Fabric
1999 Piecemakers - Time and Season (Hand Applique)
30's miniature quilt kit - Dresden Plate (Hand Applique)
Art to Heart - "I Believe" (Machine Applique)
Northcott "Cambridge Square" (Pieced)
"Bali with Love"(Machine Applique)
Row Your Quilt (Mixed)
McKenna Ryan - Petals of my Heart (Machine Applique)

Misc Projects
Disney Cars Pillowcases
Flannel Snowman Family Christmas Wall Hanging - Panel with borders
Too many more kits of bags, chatelaines, wallhangings, journal covers etc. to possibly name


Well if I doubted I had a problem before, I can no longer hide from it! Now I just need to ponder what to do about it! Suggestions are always welcome!

Monday, July 26, 2010

My First Post!!

As I send my words out into the emptiness of the world wide web, I cannot help but be excited. I am not sure what has inspired me to start this journey today.... not even sure where to begin to set up a blog. However, here it goes!

I love my family. I am blessed with a wonderful, patient husband and two incredible children. A 7 year girl and a 3 year old boy. It doesn't get much better than that! I love my job (most days) and over all, life is pretty fantastic.

But I constantly yearn to spend more time quilting. Not just quilting. I am a fabric fondler. It is an unfortunate quality to have as a quilter as it leads to many yards of fabric that sit lovingly in my sewing room..... never to be cut as I wait for the perfect project! Mostly, that means I visit my fabric stash daily to have a touch.... only to leave it to take my children to the sitter and head to work. I like to visit my sewing room inbetween putting the kids to bed, putting laundry away and various other errands that bring me past its second floor doorway. But lately, it seems my UFOs are taking over and touching fabric and reading other people's blogs is as close as I get to the hobby I enjoy so much.

As a motivator to push past my room of UFOs and beautiful (but uncut) fabric, I am starting this blog. My first "To Do" this week is to make a list and take pictures of all my current UFOs. To inspire me, I am adding a picture of a project I have actually completed! I tried to add others... but I haven't seemed to figure that out yet :)

I can't imagine anyone reading this blog (except for me and maybe my mom!), but I am excited about documenting my journey!