Thursday, December 8, 2016

Crafted Applique Give Away

It's that time again!  Sew Mamma Sew is hosting its giveaway linky party.  A chance to meet up with some pretty amazing quilt bloggers and participate in some heartfelt love in the form of giveaways.  This is my first time participating in this linky party.  Thanks's to Lara at Buzzin Bumble and Jenn at Quarter Inch From the Edge, I am able to participate.

Let me back up...back when Lara's book Crafted Applique was released, I won a copy of the book during the 30 day blog hop event celebrating the book's release over at Quarter Inch From the Edge.  Lara had offered to refund the money of anyone that had already purchased the book, if they won one of the giveaways.  My name was drawn at random, making me a winner.  I had already purchased the book, so instead of requesting a refund, I asked Lara if I could instead give away a copy of her book at a later date to a lucky reader.  And she happily said "yes."

So that brings us today and this book.

This book has been life changing for me.  I HATED doing applique.  I have been known to go to great lengths to avoid it at all costs.  That is until after this book entered my life.  The crazy part is, it is so simple a pre-schooler could do it (well maybe not the sewing machine part).  I can't wait to do more of it!

The Crafted Applique method made attaching these letters to my in progress book shelf quilt (Read With Me by Melissa Corry) a breeze.  The best part is, Lara's method treats the fabric to prevent fraying...who doesn't love that???  I know I love it!.

So one lucky reader will win a copy of Lara's Crafted Applique book.  Entering the giveaway is easy.  Just leave a comment below and tell me how you feel about applique.  For me, I love it on a quilt, but have always dreaded the process.  Not any more, I say bring on the applique!  You can have a second entry if you are a follower of TishNWonderland, just leave a second separate comment telling me how you follow me.  Heck, it's Christmas, and let's show the amazing Lara some love.  I will give you a third entry if you leave a comment telling me if you follow Buzzin Bumble and how.

Don't forget if you are a no reply blogger to leave your email address in the comment, otherwise I will not be able to contact you if you win.  The giveaway will be open until Midnight Monday December 12th and is open internationally (per Lara...isn't she the best??)  I will announce the winner on Tuesday, December 13th and Lara will contact  you via email about shipping your book.

Normally, I try to reply to all comments, however, due to a traveling teenager arriving home this weekend and the craziness that comes with that, I apologize in advance if I do not respond.  Know that I appreciate everyone that stops by!  If this is your first time to Wonderland please feel free to look around.  You can read more about me and my crazy life of quilting, cats and family here.

Don't forget, Crafted Applique is the perfect holiday gift for any quilter!  You can pick up a copy of of crafted Applique here.

Today I'm linking up with Giveaway Day.

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Christmas Ornaments Made With Love

Last month our guild started putting the finishing touches on the plans for our Christmas party.  One of the activities members can participate in, is a homemade ornament exchange.  This was the first year I would be attending the party and wasn't quite sure if I wanted to participate.  My 4th quarter list is pretty long, did I really need a distraction.

Then I discovered a posted by Leann at Devoted Quilter on making Free Motion Quilted Ornaments and knew I had to make some.  We shall call them the "perfect squirrel."  That little distraction you know you shouldn't do, but that you are going to do.

Leann filled her ornaments with different free motion fillers, but I decided to try a different angle.  After searching on google "Christmas ornament coloring pages" I found may different inspirations for filling my ornaments.

I used my trusty blue water soluble pens to create a bit of a road map and just started quilting.  For homemade ornaments, this project completes very quickly.  I was able to whip up 6 different bulbs in probably less than an hour from start to finish.

How about a peek at the at the ornaments I received...they are already happily hanging on my tree.

A super cute strip pieced tree

A yo-yo Christmas Tree

A fabric folded star

And a decoupage Christmas bulb.

The other fun game we played at the party is a Yankee swap gift exchange.  You know the one...were you can take the gifts other people have already opened.  I was lucky and got to keep the gift I opened.

A lovely green and blue jelly roll and needle threaders/cutters.  These will come in handy when I thread my Sweet Sixteen.

My favorite part of the swap was when David opened his package, a set of charm squares.  He was so quite about it and everyone was so taken in by the bigger gift bags, even myself didn't pay attention to what the charms were.  His poker face paid one realized they were Kaffe Fassett and he got to keep them.  You can read more about his good fortune and see his pretty squares here.

I quietly snapped a picture of him as he was laying them out to take a picture of them.

He really was like a little boy on Christmas morning, so cute.

I'm still over here plugging away on my list of projects, some are getting closer to finished...others are not.

Caroline Kitty Cat inspects my progress on the book shelf quilt.  My poor girl has had a very rough past few days.  She lost so much weight and stopped eating.  A trip to the vet discovered a intestinal infection.  After a shot to the rumpus, I'm happy to report she is bouncing back to her normal sassy self.

And speaking of the teenage sass-master...

Somewhere in all those flashing carter bus lights, my baby girl and her high school band, boarded a bus and left last night for Disney.  Leaving me with six full on sewing evenings...well possibly.  Life likes to throw in those squirrels I was talking about.  Only life likes to throw in non quilting squirrels.  And on a side note, no one warned me that packing a teenage girl for a 6 day trip to Disney was going to be way more chaotic than packing her for a 6 week camp.  I think my head is still spinning. 

Today I'm linking up with Let's Bee Social and Midweek Makers.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

A piece of a legend

Well I seem to be back from an unintended blogging break.  I really don't have a good reason for my disappearance, maybe a case of the blahs?  But let me tell you the above little package, excited me!  Wrapped in the contents of that lovely white and pink tissue paper and sweet little floral ribbon are pieces of a legend!

During my week off last week (which should have been way more productive than it was) I received a package in the mail from my dear friend Helen who blogs over at Midget Gem Quilts.  I met Helen during the 2015 New Bloggers Blog Hop and over the past (almost) two years, our friendship has grown.  I knew there was a package crossing the seas on its way to me, but I had no idea what it would be.

I carefully, untied the ribbon, read my card and unwrapped the beautiful tissue paper, to reveal another darling bag (note the name of the shop on the bag) and beautiful teal fabric.  Curiouser and curiouser.

Inside, what is quite possibly the coolest shop bag EVER, I found the cutest little White Rabbit key chain.

I remember Helen telling me about this shop right after we first met, now I have a little piece of it!

Now let's talk about that teal and white polka dot fabric...curiouser and curiouser!

Does anyone recognize this fabric?  I'll give you a minute to think.  No pressure, I knew it the second I pulled it out of the bag.  If you just answered, binding from the Behemoth or Coulter Wedding Quilt you would be 100% correct, and I am applauding you!  David looked at me like I was crazy when I held the fabric up and asked, "Do you know what this is???"

Seriously, I feel like I'm holding a piece of history.  I have followed Helen from day one of the creation of this quilt and enjoyed reading about every minute of her making it.  Some quilts just take on a life and personality of it's own, and the Behemoth is one of those quilts.  You can read more about the Behemoth here.  I feel that it is an honor that she has decided to share some of the left over fabrics with me.

Before I wrap up, I shall mention my list.  I have been working on it, but not as gung ho as I should be.  I do have two more things crossed off and need to share them with you.  Which leaves me with this pile of letters to be appliqued on the bookshelf quilt.

Then you throw in a few squirrels in the form of hot pads, Christmas ornaments and a tree skirt and well, you may see where I got off track.

After finishing his sister's plus quilt, David decided he wanted to make a skirt for our tree and I agreed to quilt it.  So, it became a family project for any future grandchildren to fight over.

So time to crack the whip and get back to work.  Christmas is right around the corner and if I don't get out of this funk, I may only find coal in my stocking...yikes!

So I will leave you when my tiniest fur children.  

When returning to my bed after brushing my teeth, I discovered Junior and Caroline had taken over my spot.  Like they really thought, I was going to be like, sure, I'll just grab the couch??  I can't believe how much he has grown in the short time we've had him...he's bigger than Princess Fuzzy Butt and she's almost a year older than him.

After some sweet talking and the fact I'm still bigger than them, they decided to let me back into bed and curl up with me.  They can be so sweet when the want to be.  You can't see it, but Caroline's paw is resting on Junior.

Even though Junior's feral side still shows from time to time and he's convinced dogs are for hissing at, I think he's glad to not be at his dumpster anymore.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Mini Round Robin--Finished

This entire project has been a crazy train ride full of emotions and I would certainly buy a ticket to ride again anytime.  The journey for this little quilt started back in May when I constructed the center block, called The Attraction block (the free pattern can be found here).

My poor round robin mates, I think I'm the one that made it hardest on everyone.  If I had it to do over, I would have chosen a block that wasn't so simplistic.  I really kind of backed them into a corner color wise and well, it's not the most interesting block to build off of.  But I have to say the round robin team completely blew this out of the water and returned to me in September the most beautiful and creatively designed mini I could have ever imagined.  

You can read more about my mini's journey, if you would like me to pause my story for a minute or two...

The post
Round one it traveled to Julie at Pink Doxies
Round two it traveled to Cindy at Stitchin At Home
Round three it traveled to Sandra at MmmQuilts

We had hoped to have our minis quilted by the beginning of October, but true to form, I am fashionably late to the party.  That's okay though, I was a bit intimidated by their creative work and had to wait for this little guy to speak to me.

This mini is about balance, change and movement.  Life is constantly changing.  In any given situation there is usually two sides pressing against each other and it just depends on how hard they are pressing as to whether balance is achieved.  My center square started out black and white, yin and yang.  I like to think of that red square in the middle as the pop of energy that forces things to change, for the better or the worse.  We need that pop; without it there is no chance to grow.

So until this epiphany hit me, this poor mini laid around my house, basted and ready to go.  My pop of red that made me realize, it was time to quilt or get off the machine, happened one evening while I was quilting at the Sweet Sixteen.  All of my fur kids were quietly playing in the living/dining room.  I had my glasses on top of my head so looking at a distance things were blurring.  When I glanced in their direction, I could see white stuff all over the floor and all three dogs were chewing at

For the first time ever, they had grabbed something off the quilting table.  Those three heathens, managed to paw the batting out from between the quilt layers.  Thankfully, the top was not ripped.  This picture is blurry because I may have been screaming like a raging sailor.

I have no idea what possessed them to do this, but lesson learned.  When I went to the store to pick up more batting, I ran into this fabric.

 For reasons not clearly revealed to me, I decided I wanted this for my backing fabric instead of the red print.  If I had to re-layer everything, I may as well re-layer everything.

Now on to the good part...the quilting.  

This mini called for three different colors of thread, Aurifil #2250 Red, #2692 Black and #2021 Natural White.  Three very classic colors.  Doesn't it make you want to dress up and go out on the town?

For my section, the center square, I decided on simple continuous curves for the red and feathers in the black and white.  Though the black and white fabrics are opposite each other, the feathers allow them to flow together.  

For Julie's round, I chose to do angled lines going opposite each other in the red and black sections.  Instead of adding the ribbon candy in the border, I left the small borders un-quilted.

For Cindy's round, those awesome chevron/arrows, I decided to echo the chevrons going in the opposite direction.  I LOVE when I can add ghost quilting to a project; those little designs you didn't know where lurking in a space.  In life, even when things are going smoothly in the direction you want them to go, there can be small little obstacle trying to take you a different direction.  Those little hiccups can lead to beauty, so we shouldn't fear them.  

This photograph shows how I marked the lines to quilt them to make sure I had the spacing correct.

In Sandra's last round of log cabin blocks, I knew I wanted to add some dot to dot quilting of angles and something similar in the corners.

Since this was a smaller project, I used a 1/4" tape to mark off the edge of my quilt, to help me easily see where I needed my lines to end and account for where the binding would hit the quilt.

Though, it's a bit  hard to see, those angles point down in the red and up in the black, with ribbon candy in the base of the red.  In the corners, I chose to add lines radiating from the corner out.

And of course for my binding, I went with a flange...gasp!  I seriously contemplated doing my binding in half red and black to blend into their sections.  I decided on the silver/gray and white flange to brighten things up a bit and show a distinct stopping point.  I think this quilt has achieved it's nirvana.  And so, I shall call my mini, "Nirvana."

And a quick peak at the back...

This quilt will always have a special place in my heart.  Being able to create with Julie, Cindy and Sandra was an honor.  All three of these ladies were able to translate exactly what this quilt was saying, even if at the time we couldn't completely understand what was being said.  I hope we all can fear change less and embrace the future with open arms.  Positive energy, thoughts and prays will bring about positive change.  I'm pretty sure nothing too great has come out of worry and fear except more fear.  With that I will leave you with Nirvana in the garden where her first pictures were taken.

Did I happen to mention this is the fourth finish from my 4th Quarter list?

Today I'm linking up with Let's Bee SocialLinky Tuesday, and  Main Crush Monday.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Scrap Squares--A Gift of Friendship

You may recall way back in the spring I made several table runners to sell at our guild's boutique.

One of which was this mini quilt from the book 101 Fabulous small quilts called Scrap Squares.  I have a ridiculous amount of pre-cuts in Moda's Papillon by 3 Sisters.  (Seriously, I still have an untouched Fat Eighth Bundle)

One of my nearest and dearest friends, from all the way back in middle school, fell in love with this mini and wanted to buy it.  Since I had already promised it to the guild, I told her that I would make her one of her very own, but this one had to go to the festival boutique.  She was heart broken to find out that the mini had already sold by the time she was able to get to the boutique's table.

So over the summer, true to my word, I began piecing Lori a Scrap Squares quilt of her very own in Papillon.  As I laid the fabrics out on the floor, I decided to increase the size of this quilt, from mini (3 by 4 squares) to smaller wall hanging size (5 by 6 squares).

I would also quilt this one differently from the smaller version's straight line quilting in variegated thread.

 This time around I chose to do ribbon candy in the sashing in Aurifil 2021 Natural White and continuous curves in all the squares in Aurifil 2405 Oyster.

The binding would be a flanged binding using a soft off white and gray print for the flange and a lovely blue print from the Papillon line of fabric for the main binding.

When I contacted Lori earlier in the week, she was completely surprised to learn that I had made her, her very own Scrap Squares quilt.  I know that this quilt will be well loved and that makes me very happy.  I have a dream and a wish for this quilt, but that will have to remain between two very good friends.

But for everyone else, how about a few more pictures...

The backing is made from this beautiful blue floral Timeless Treasures print.

And on another happy note for me, the completion of Scrap Squares is the third finish from my 4th quarter list...Woot!!!

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