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Sunday, February 27, 2011

Black and White

I have been playing around with my hand dyes again. If you have been over to visit MamaCJT , you know where my inspiration came from. I went crazy when I saw the one she did over at her blog, and knew I had to sit down and made one just like it for myself. She is the Queen of inspiration to me and uses predominantly white fabrics with her quilts. I have hardly ever gone that route, so I gave it a whirl. As I was stitching together my top, I kept thinking about the black that I normally use. So just to see, I put together another top just like it only with the black. It was really a fun little personal challenge for me. The jury is out as to which I like best. I think the colors pop more on the black background, but then I do like the white.

There were a few ugly moments, when I decided to add a mini 3/4" strip inner border. What was I thinking??? The white one being the first top I made took the brunt of the mistakes, and I gave up and left it alone finally.After all there is only so many times you can rip out something before everything starts to fall apart. Once I got to the black top, I got a little smarter and cut my strip 1 1/2" wide and folded it in half, to stitch it in. Much easier. When you are working with such a small strip it is hard to control it and stitch at the same time. While the second one is nowhere close to perfect, it was a far cry better than the white quilt. I think a few more try's at this and I might actually get something close to pretty good!! :-) That's my highest goal for this technique I think!! Next time it's a piping and call it good! Gotta challenge myself from time to time just to see if I am still able to completely un-nerve "me". LOL
For these guys, I think some kind of camouflage on the corners, will be my only salvation! :-) Or I could just consider them character flaws...
So which of these do you like best????


Saturday, February 19, 2011


Thanks to Ariane over at Arianescrafts I have lost a nights sleep. She posted a photo of a wonderful mini quilt she whipped up while keeping awake before starting in on her long work day. I work long days too, so I just decided to hop over and see what she was talking about. Consider me hooked.

The Small Quilt Talk group over at Yahoo groups is now my favorite place to visit. What a great bunch of gals. I got such a warm welcome, and they have some cool challenges. Personal challenges that is. They give you a pattern and you run wild with it. All the past ones are posted and I have downloaded them all to see what I can come up with.

Here is my first little challenge quilt. Now there is a real use for the scraps I have been keeping. I was never a real fan of the red fabric in this quilt, but man did it work here. It is so old that I will never be able to find more, so I will have to settle for enjoying what's done. I love the ability to actually start and complete a quilt in just a few hours. If you are needing a quick fix quilt, check out the group.

Down side of this all, is now I want more books! Oh yeah, clean out my bookshelf  and replace them with more. I guess that's the sickness!  :-)  I was able to find an out of print book on mini quilts in a electronic version and download it into my Color Nook. That was a bonus for me. I am loving having electronic quilt books and my Nook.

If you need more inspiration check out the great mini quilts at Pleasentree.  Now if that doesn't get your blood rushing, I don't know what will. I promise you will be seeing more small quilts here soon.  :-)
Just in case you wanted to know, the center of this little quilt is the perfect size for a 12" tile trivet!!!!!
                                                                 HINT HINT  

Friday, February 18, 2011

Trivets-Another great finish

It is a banner week for me this week. Yet another great finish from a blogger who took the challenge. This one comes from Danielle over at http://yetheabidethfaithful.blogspot.com/ 
I just love the old fashioned Valentines center on this beauty. Does it just remind you of all those great Valentines we used to exchange in school? You know the ones you spent hours making the perfect shoe box to contain. My boys have been out of school for so long now that I don't even know if kids these days do that sort of thing anymore. Gheez, did that make me sound old!  :-)

Anyway Danielle, I was thrilled to get this photo, and hope you will follow along the rest of the year for new clothes for your tile!  Can't wait to see what else you come up with.

On that note, if you are working on the tile project with me, please send photos. I would love to post them and show off your work!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Wahoo moment

It's always one of those fabulous  Wahoo moments, when you open your email to find a great photo like this.

These gals are from a quilt group in Sterling Colorado, who took my challenge and made it thru my Trivet tutorial. By the looks on their faces, they had a good time, and all managed to make it thru my directions. Not a hate mail in my inbox, which was a relief. I am thrilled to see the finished projects and smiling faces. Better yet, to see how different every ones are and how fantastic they all look.  Hope they will continue and make more of those special Tux's through out the year with me.

Great job girls, and thank you so much for sharing your photo with me!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentines Day! 

Thanks to Embroidery Library I get to show off a little today. It was fun to put away the scraps for awhile and do a little embroidery. It's been way to long since I have played with my machine.
Hope you all have a wonderful day, and don't eat too many of those candy hearts. My favorites are the cinnamon gel hearts. They seem to be hard to find this year, but I managed to grab a couple of bags, which I have devoured. Shame on me, I didn't even share!!!  :-)

Sunday, February 13, 2011


There is nothing like the feeling of success when you are able to make up a very quick little project with what you have on hand. I consider them freebie projects, something I have managed to use leftovers for. A week ago Sherri over at This and That shared this fast and easy little cutie. It took me longer to figure out where I had stashed my ric-rack, than it did, to stitch it up. Now there is something wrong with this picture isn't there?  I clean up my sewing room, then I can't find a thing!   :-(  

I added a little purple piping on top of my ric-rack. What do you do with that last 3" strip of something? Why cut it into 1" strips and make piping. Verging on insanity you say!  Probably, but it sure made a fun edge.

It's not too late to make up one of these for yourselves. Go visit Sherri and get the pattern for yourself.

Happy almost Valentines day!


Friday, February 11, 2011


I love weeks when I can actually admit that I was able to make some real progress. Having not had the quality time I need in my sewing room with the holidays and the remodel, I made up for it all the past couple of weeks. This string quilt, 2 charity quilts quilted and bound, a mystery quilt that just needs the binding tacked down and 2 baby quilts that are close to finished. Yippee! I missed my long arm so much that I moved a ton of stuff to get to it. Only to have to move it again, before the remodel is complete, I am sure. :-)

This string quilt is one of my favorites. Thank to Nanette over at  Freda's Hive, there is a great tutorial on this spool string quilt. Yeah, I know it's been up for a year, but I was just lucky enough to stumble on it 2 weeks ago. Check it out if you haven't see it, it was a so much fun to put together and I blasted thru loads of my scraps. http://fredashive.blogspot.com/2010/01/string-spool-tutorial.html
It is now hanging in my studio and brightens my day. Thanks Nanette. Not only for the great quilt, but also for helping me clean out my stash.

In putting this together, I decided that I absolutely love the border, so I am now starting to stitch together all my strings as I collect them, and keep a roll that is 4 1/2" wide. When I have enough, I instantly will have that perfect border . Long ago I started a 1 7/8" roll, ask me why you say? I dunno, it seemed like a good thing to do at the time. My guess is that it was the widest scrap I had then?????  Call it just a little crazy... OR, go ahead and call it a lot of crazy, which ever the case. I have managed to make up a nice size roll and it does make a great candle mat. It will some day find it's way into a project, but in the mean time it keeps my scraps confined! :-) What do you do with your scraps? Please don't tell me throw them away! AAAAAAAHHHHH

Monday, February 7, 2011

Mystery Quilting

When you get up in the morning, to a day that looks like this, there ain't nothing you can do but groan. I'm not complaining, we have had way less snow that my east coast counterparts, but it is so dreary looking.

What's the best thing you can do?????  How about participate in an online Mystery Quilt. That's just what happened yesterday, over at  http://www.planetpatchwork.com/.   It was their Superbowl mystery quilt day.

By day's end, I had this, which was quite a pick me up from my morning start, don't ya think?  :-) I knew when I read the supply list, that I was going for my hand dyes, but never did I expect it to be so cool looking. It really wasn't hard to do, if you learn to read the instructions. I, of course had to jump in and know more than the pattern a time or two, only to be knocked back down to reality and picking out stitches!  :-)  :-) Go figure! I guess that reading thing, isn't really "that" overstated. hehehe  Anyway the pattern is still up for a couple more days, if your interested. It finishes to a 61" x 61" quilt. Wonder if that quilting fairy will show up and quilt it now!!! A girls's gotta dream you know!!


Saturday, February 5, 2011

12" Trivet

I  have no orphan blocks for this tile????  Really in all my mess, no extra block. So off I go, to Quilter Cache, to remedy this situation! I find this great scrap buster block- Goose Creek, that I can hardly wait to make a quilt into, and put together 1 block for my tile. Now I gathered up my 12" tile and put the not so orphan block on it, only to decide that the block, did no justice to the lovely Continental beige tile. It has real possibilities in a quilt, but as "this" one block, it was pretty boring.  It did however give me a chance to play with free motion quilting. I messed with my tensions, which would usually be a big no-no, but I wanted to see if I could get the bottom thread to pull up just enough to show a little on the top. I know most of you work very hard to make sure that doesn't happen. What can I say. I stomp my feet and say I want to do it different sometimes! :-) It will work just fine for a trivet, and no tears shed if it gets something spilled on it.


 back to the drawing board I went and found a paper pieced pattern that worked out just great. This is Wild Goose Chase 2. Now this is more like it. It makes my heart sing! If your a paper piecing fan, it really is an easy block to do. And I have to say, if anyone spills on this trivet, you will see a river of tears!!!!  So I ask you, does this make it "not" a practical block like the top one for the purpose???
Hummmm I have to think on this one! 

Hope to have inspired you. Now get out there and clothe your trivet! I want to see what you do.


PS: Don't forget that, I try to always have links to things I refer to, so you can click on the words and it should take you right there.  :-)

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Do You EQ??

A friend of mine was playing with her new EQ7 and was able to figure out how to make this little quiltie for me. I have long admired this in a magazine photo. It was the perfect time for me to you my hand dyed fabrics. I have to admit when I was finished piecing it, I was less than excited about it. This was one of those quilts that the quilting makes the quilt. Once the quilting was done, I love it, but before that, it was just a blob of colors that seemed to run together.

I have EQ5 and I never did manage to make friends with it, even after taking classes for a few days. After reading what the new software can do, I am excited, but I need to go play with hers for awhile before I spring for new software. But I am really impressed that she was able to convert this quilt into a pattern.
Hummm, AQS has a great deal on the software if I just can decide if I really want or need it! Decisions Decisions.  :-)

I love the back as much as I do the front. It's a texture thing I think!

Thanks for all the wonderful comments over at Stash Manicure on Monday.  Kim from Wyoming was the lucky winner of the trivet, and it went into the mail to her today.  I look forward to sharing more clothes for them soon!

I ventured over to my home improvement store today for some 12" tiles, now that the temperature got up to 30 degrees. It was 14 below here yesterday, so I spent the day at my sewing machine, where it was nice and warm. I have to laugh at the marketing they do to get our attention. I bought 2 very plain boring tiles that they cleverly named Continental Beige. I guess you can dress up any bland thing and make it sound like your buying something very stylish and elegant!!!  :-)  Oh we live in a strange society, huh? :-)  :-)

Let me know how you like EQ7. I would love to hear from you.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Another little Valentines Trivet Tuxedo

 Hope you all enjoyed my post at Stash Manicure. As I promised there will be a "Tuxedo" or two posted every month for a year. For those who love pieced blocks, here is another Valentines outfit just for you!

This block will be a 6" block so it will need a smaller sashing to fit the tile. I chose to make mine 1" and trim it down when it was done. It is just to difficult to work with pieces smaller than that. Remember we are needing a 7" square for a 6" tile.

So lets get started. 
For the background (mine is black) you will need 2,  2 7/8" squares cut once on the diagonal, and 1,  3 1/4" block cut twice on the diagonal.
The Red on my block requires 4, 2 7/8" blocks cut once on the diagonal. The Pink is 1,  3 1/4" block cut twice on the diagonal, and 1, 2 1/2" block for the center.

This will show you what it looks like once everything is cut.

And the layout for piecing.
Follow the original instructions for the trivet cover and your on your way!

Scrap your way to wonderful "Trivets"

 I have a fun little project to share with you.  I, like many of you,  have made and loved those wonderful monthly themed projects. There is nothing better than having a new "quilty" every month to decorate with. So lets step it up a bit, and make something that is not only decorative, but functional and can be used daily. How about a new set of clothes every month, for it???

Sound interesting?????
Here you have it.
Ceramic tile trivets!

A plain old "cheap" ceramic tile, in a Velcro closed pocket. Did I mention cheap?  How does, about 50 cents sound to you? Yep, that's the cost for these 6" tiles.  A few scraps and some velcro and you have all you need.

A 5" quilt block bordered with a  1 1/2" border strip, will make it large enough to fit the tile nicely. Those leftover pieces of quilt batting are perfect for this project,too. I have batted the front and the back, although it really isn't necessary for the back.

So let's get started:

For Valentines day, I have chosen an applique heart motif. My favorite method, is fusible applique, but if you are a needle turned kind of girl, go for it. There are no rules.  :-)

I am going to start with a 5" square for the front background. Since I want my heart to pop a little, I have chosen to place a secondary 3 1/2"  background square  behind my heart. We can all cut out hearts, so let your scissors do the walking and cut something that speaks to you!

 Once I am all fused into place, I am going to attach my 1 1/2" border strips.

Now I am going to measure the block, which is  7" square and cut 3 more pieces of fabric, and 2 pieces of batting with that measurement. We are also going to cut a 3 1/2" x 7" piece for the flap.
You will note that my lining is a different fabric.

Fold the flap strip in half, so it measures 1 3/4" x 7" and stitch ends. I have marked  1/4" and 1/2" in from each end with chalk. Stitch from the folded edge up, at an angle. It is a little difficult to see the sample, so I have added a drawing to help with this step. Turn right side out and press.

Stack your batting, front fabric (right side up), flap, and lining fabric (right side down) with the top edges even.  Stitch, flip your lining over and press.

You can do some random quilting if you like at this point. I have decided that I need a few more hearts on mine. We now have the opportunity to stitch a 6" LOOP piece of Velcro to the back side of the flap towards the folded edge. Please note if you have chosen a fusible applique method, you need to seal the edges with some kind of sealer like Fray Check or Fray block to protect from fraying with repeated washings.

Now stack your 2 remaining  7"  pieces of fabric, right sides together, on top to the last piece of batting and stitch across the top flipping and pressing like the front. Stitch a 6" piece of HOOK Velcro to the back, about 1/4" from the top edge.

Lay the back piece over the front piece, right sides together and stitch down the 2 sides and across the bottom. Trim your bottom corners and turn right side out.  Your ready to dress your tile!

 Could it really be any easier? Best yet, when it gets dirty, it comes off and goes right into the washer and dryer.

Now changing these out, for the seasons, months, or holidays will be a snap. What do you think? Better start stitchin and planning for Easter, 4th of July, Halloween, spring, summer, fall,...  Whew, so many ideas! You can follow me, over at MooseStashQuilting for a year of new tile clothes. I will have at least 1 new "tuxedo"  posted by the 5th of each month!  I hope you see you there, because we are going to have some fun! Now head on out, to your favorite home improvement store, and pick up a tile or two! I wonder how a 12" trivet would be??? What a great size for one those larger pans, and a terrific way to use those orphan quilt blocks. I am off to my Home Depot and as I remember they have some great deals on orphan tiles too! See you soon.
                                                                        Happy Stitchin!