Sunday, August 30, 2015

Touches of Autumn

Apart from the last couple of days, the two weeks prior were almost unbearable.

The heat and humidity hit records in some areas and one would think that with living as close to the sea as we do, we would have experienced at least a little breeze, but the air was virtually still.  Sleeping was fitful and outdoor work came to a standstill.

And so did my sewing!

Being that my sewing studio is upstairs...and heat rises...there was no way that I was going to torture myself up there in front of my machine.  As a result, I didn't get as much accomplished with the next step to my mystery quilt as I would have liked.  Everything is made, now I just have to sew it to the quilt-in-progress.  It should be done in the next couple of days although the humidity seems to be back today.  Yuck!

While on the topic of my mystery quilt, the template for the Dresden plate 'petal' that I included with the photos and instructions in the PDF to Step 3 appears to not want to print to the actual size.  I apologize for this but as you probably all know by now, I am NOT a computer guru, nor do I pretend to be so I try to compensate by offering alternative plans of action.  I do my best but had a feeling that this might happen and that is why I included the measurements to the 'petal' in order that you could draw your own.

Tuesday is the 1st day of September!  Bring on fall and the cooler weather!

I decided that I needed some touches of Autumn around the house, so I started...albeit a little early...with some of my fall decorating.

Ollie says, "Bring it on!"?

Happy stitching!

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Mystery Quilt Along - Step 3

Bet you thought I'd forgotten about Step 3 or given up, huh?

Not a chance!  But it did take me a while longer than anticipated, simply because of my anal-ness (is that a word?)

I had what in my head I saw as the perfect Step 3 but after working on it for several days, I decided that it just wasn't going to work, so guess what?

Into the scrap bin it went.  I'll probably find some use for it in the future but in the scrap bin it'll sit.

Here it is now with lots of geese flying around our little community of houses.

Mystery Quilt-Along Step 3
You might not notice but before you all get in a flap thinking that I had forgotten to tell you about a step, I had to compensate and add an additional border before attaching my flying geese.  

I am using my new-ish BIG Bernie machine to make this quilt and it's been quite a while since I had used it prior to this project and I inadvertently forgot to move my needle position one step to the right to allow for a scant 1/4" seam allowance. As a result, my blocks were coming out smaller than my original graph layout and therefore smaller than yours.  I realized this after completing the Step 1 houses and figured that now was the perfect time to add the 3 1/2" shortfall that I was lacking around the circumference.  Hense, the small red border that you see just inside the flying geese.  

So now we're all evened up and I'm back on track again!

Please click HERE to download and print the PDF file with the photo and instructions.

I'm going to give you at least two weeks at least to complete this step.  

Remember, there is no rush or time frame for you to complete the steps.  The PDF files will always be accessible on my blog.

Have fun and enjoy!

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Home again, home again, jiggedy jig!

After four long years, Mr. Painted Quilt and I went on a much needed vacation.

We left last Saturday and took the 11:15 ferry from Digby, Nova Scotia to St. John, New Brunswick then crossed over into the United States at Calais, Maine.

Calais is a small border town whose main attraction is Marden's, a kind of little bit of everything 'junk' shop.  One of Maine's best kept secrets is that inside this particular Marden's hides a HUGE fabric department with rows and rows of quilt shop quality fabric at incredibly discounted prices.  

How does $5.99 a yard or less sound?

I did manage to come across some Jo Morton by Andover fabric which I scooped up in the blink of an eye.

Did you notice the prices?

After an hour of shopping, we found ourselves back on the road again at about 4 p.m.  It was our intention to take a motel room for the night en route to Ontario to visit with friends who we haven't seen since moving to Nova Scotia five years ago but I think that we were both so pumped, the next thing we realized, eleven hours had slipped by and we were knocking on Lucie's door at 5 a.m.

Since Mr. PQ drove the entire way, he went straight to bed and Lucie and I sat up and talked for a couple of hours before I petered out as well.  We didn't do too much that first day but Lucie and I did manage to fit in some sewing while Mr. PQ went off to visit some of his old cronies.

It goes without saying that we had to visit a couple of local quilt shops where I naturally did my part to help the local economy.

I just couldn't pass up these gorgeous fabrics from Kathy Schmitz' new Sturbridge line for Moda.

We had a wonderful visit and I even managed to get some handwork done while drinking copious amounts of tea around Lucie's kitchen table, just like old times.  
Between hugs, tears and promises to get together again 'soon', Wednesday afternoon found us back on the road again headed back to Bangor, Maine via Vermont and New Hampshire.  We arrived on Thursday morning and for the next two days, Mr. PQ chauffeured me around from shop to shop without too much complaining.

I felt like I had been given a "get out of jail free" card.

Although I still can't get around without my walker or cane, I did manage to shop till I literally dropped.

Bangor and it's sister city Brewer across the river have most of my favorite shops including JoAnn's, Hobby Lobby, AC Moore and a quilt shop and Bernina dealer called The Cotton Cupboard, only to mention a few.  I did boost the local economy at ALL OF THEM!

Believe it or not, I forgot my camera at home so all I can show you are photos of what I purchased taken once I got home and not some of the gorgeous New England scenery.

Large, bright and colorful shopping bags from Joanne's.


The world's smallest mini steam iron because I dropped and broke my mini travel Rowenta before leaving...

Two Creative Grid rulers, my new faves!

Some notions...a new seam ripper and groovy pins.

A couple of spools of DMC thread and some jute rick rack...

and a "Row by Row" license plate and pin from The Cotton Cupboard in Bangor, Maine.

And of course, more F-A-B-R-I-C!!!

I also spent way too much on clothing...boring but essential...and groceries!  

We brought two coolers with us which we packed just before leaving and the ice hadn't even started to melt by the time we arrived back home!

Some new Autumn decorating items also managed to fine their way into my cart but I'll show those to you when I start the transition from summer to fall mode.

It's great to go away but there's  so much truth to the saying,

There's no place like home! 

I'm sorry to say that I didn't get too far on the next step of my Mystery Quilt-Along but I promise to get back at it in the next few days.

So please, stay tuned!

Happy stitching!