Friday, October 31, 2014

Sewing and Stitching

I guess by now you realize that when you haven't heard from me in a while, you know I've been busy!

Frankie and Ollie continue to cuddle by the fire and I also stay warm and keep them company while stitching at the kitchen table.

I completed another block from Leanne Beasley's Down in the Garden and have already started on the next one.  A butterfly will be appliqued to the end of the spout but I haven't decided whether I'll make it from wool or cotton.

In the interim and to take a break from stitching, I finished piecing a mini flimsy for a small quilt-a-month club that I'm taking part in.  

I cut the second one out yesterday and started piecing it this afternoon.  My goal is to have the flimsy finished by Sunday.  This one will be made entirely from Civil War and reproduction fabrics.

The quilts are from Tara Lynn Darr's book called Small Treasures From Scraps.

And of course no week would be complete without a little retail therapy!

Aren't they gorgeous?

Happy stitching!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

There's something about a wood fire

We've had unseasonably warm weather for almost a week and a half which has been really nice.  The gardens have been prepped for winter and hopefully the grass will need cutting just one more time.

When we purchased our almost 200 year old Nova Scotian home four years ago, it came with a gravity fed oil burning stove in the know the one...Frankie and Ollie's favorite cuddling place.

Although it served us well, we wanted to replace it with a more efficient wood burning stove.  So we shopped around and decided to go with a Pacific Energy unit that was installed last week in anticipation of the cooler weather which we know lies waiting just around the corner.

We used it for the first time two nights ago when the temperature took a drop. It performed exactly as promised and we haven't had to turn our furnace on once since it's been installed...and it most definitely has the F & O (Frankie and Ollie) seal of approval!  We stoked it well before we went to bed last night and Frankie must have slept in front of it all night because we never heard a peep meow out of him till 4 a.m. when he came to wake us up.  He was hungry and the fire had burned down to a gorgeous bed of coals.

I've been doing a bit of stitching and managed to complete another block in Leanne Beasley's Down in the Garden quilt while struggling with a head and chest cold.

Leanne's version...

And my version.

So now that the new wood stove is in and my cold is just about gone, I'm hoping to get a lot more accomplished over the next little while.

Happy stitching!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

On your newsstands now...

Here's a photo of "A Vintage Christmas", the quilt that I designed and pieced specifically for the 2014 issue of Primitive Quilts & Projects" magazine which is now available in stores, shops and newsstands.

My friend Alice Chancey did the custom quilting.  Isn't it amazing?

I've incorporated my three favorite things when it comes to designing and making a quilt...patchwork, embroidery and wool applique. 

I'm thrilled with the set up and the photography. What a wonderful group of gals to work with.  They are all so thorough, professional and above all else, friendly and ever so positive.

Now I can't wait for the Spring 2015 issue to come out because I have another project in that issue as well!

Life is sooooo darn good!

Happy stitching!

Monday, October 13, 2014

Still Stitching!

And lovin' it!

I've been keeping myself busy stitching away on Leanne Beasley's Down in the Garden quilt.

If you recall, I added my own touches to the first five blocks and completely restitched the largest one, Block 5, after deciding that the original just didn't do it for me.  

The stitching is now complete and here is my version.

I decided to get this one done and out of the way first.  Of the ten blocks that make up the quilt, this one has the most stitching and is the largest block finishing at 15" x 15".  I'm very happy with the way it turned out so I went ahead and prepped all the other stitcheries for the first five blocks.

I started stitching my version of Block 3 yesterday and finished it this morning. It was substantially smaller and had much less detail than the first one so it worked up quite quickly.

Here's the original birdhouse design...

And here's mine.

For the sake of continuity, I will include my redesigned flowers and leaves in all the other stitcheries and will throw in a few surprise elements as well.

I still haven't completely decided upon which fabric to use for the patchwork part and probably won't make that decision until all the stitcheries are done.

So while the turkey is in the oven, there's no better time than now to start on the next one.

Happy Thanksgiving to all my Canadian friends!

Happy stitching!

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Busy Stitching

I've been busy working on Leanne Beasley's Down in the Garden quilt which I spoke about HERE

I did complete the largest stitched center block but decided to redesign all the stitchery blocks and start all over again after seeing Marlene's version of the same quilt which I spoke about HERE. Even though it was a lot of work, I'm so much happier that I decided to make the changes now rather when I was much farther along with the project.

I've completed the perimeter stitching for Block 5...for the second time...and all that's left to do is the center wording and the bumble bees' wings and stripes. I'm hoping to finish that either today or tomorrow after which time I'll be able move on to the next block.

Here's my version and what it looks like now.  

Of course it has to be ironed but I won't bother with that until I've completed all the stitching.

This was my first attempt following Leanne's original design.

I'm still deciding which fabric to use for the patchwork part of the quilt but that's something that I won't concern myself with until all the stitched blocks are complete.

Here in the Northern Hemisphere, we are just about at the time when our Fall foliage is at it's prime.  There's a chill in the air at night and although we haven't experienced our first frost yet here in the western corner of Nova Scotia, the telltale signs that winter is approaching are definitely around, especially the unmistakeable scent of wood fires burning in stoves everywhere.  

Our fire wasn't lit so Frankie and Ollie had to settle for cuddling on "their" wing chair in the den.

They are so hard done by, aren't they?

Happy stitching!