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Tuesday, October 15, 2013
I found the pattern for these cute little penny rugs in the October 2006 issue of BHG American Patchwork Quilting, a magazine I recently picked up at a second hand store. I enlarged the pattern a bit (129%) so that it measures approximately 9.5 x 11 inches. Cute enough to stick on a wall! The pattern includes the rug shape and pumpkin. I improvised on the second and found the cat outline in the May/June 1996 issue of Quiltmaker, and I found the bat online somewhere.
They aren’t made of wool, of course. Anyone who has a passing knowledge of wool can tell that. I’m still using craft felt (recycled plastic). The “blue” pennies on the cat mat are actually purple – they just showed up blue in the picture. I do have a small stash of wool, but it costs dearly and I’m afraid to cut into it and ruin it all. One of these days I’ll work up the confidence.
And so, I’ve stunned myself, by finishing two Hallowe’en gifts with over two weeks to spare! They look so nice that I feel like making a couple for myself, but I have other things that I have to do, first. So much to do and so little time.
The only good thing about winter is that it means more time for sewing.
Until next time,
Wednesday, October 9, 2013
I sat down at my sewing machine on Saturday after what seemed like an eternity, a summer full of house renovations that took so much of my time. And if I wasn't painting or moving things around, there was so much renovation "stuff" lying around and on top of my sewing area that I couldn't get to it.
So when I sat down at my machine (renovations are nearly over), it felt like I was starting all over again. So, in keeping with that theme, I cut four pieces of material and I cut them ALL the wrong size. Just like I was starting all over again! Turned off the sewing machine and didn't go back to it because sometimes days are just like that. The next day I measured up the pieces that I had cut and downsized the project. And this is what I made!
It's a cute little (should have been bigger) Halloween Trick or Treat bag. You can get the free pattern/tutorial here . The pattern is sooooo simple - which makes it all the more maddening that I cut the fabric wrong. Must remember end conversations with Rusty while he's sitting on my sewing table before I do any cutting because I really can't hold numbers in my head for very long.
Once I resized everything and made sure that Rusty and Ginger were occupied somewhere else, it went together so darn easy! My plan was to make several of them and sell them at the Farmer's Market here in town. But there's only one Farmers Market left for the year, and there is no way that I'm going to have time to make up a batch of these to sell. Sigh.
I should give this one away - to someone who won't mind all of the defects (like, I had to use the salvage as part of the pattern in order to have enough). Here is Mr. Skinny modelling it for us. Mr. Skinny came from Mexico a few years ago, as a gift from my oldest brother and his wife who lived there at the time. (Anyone wanna buy a cute little house in La Penita?) Mr. Skinny (not his real name) is a Dia de Muertos figurine. Anyway, he was having loads of fun deciding which was the best way to carry it. Ginger wasn't too sure about him because he was having way too much fun, so we took the bag away.
I thought, maybe I'll just use it to hold all of my Halloween fabric. Close, but no cigar. I discovered that I have just a teeny bit more than it will hold! I might have to go trick or treating myself this year just to put it to use.
Until next time,
Thursday, October 3, 2013
I’ve been clipping along on my mariner’s star, but earlier this week I hit a major snag. I was planning to shift the colours from black to purple-pink to golden as they went from top to bottom, using what fabrics I have – and while the changes aren’t very subtle, I kind of like it. However…
The pattern is foundation-pieced and it limits any gradual shading by pre-determining the shapes of the pieces. It adds more of a challenge, but I’m okay with that.
BUT, there’s this teensy-weensy little piece… It sticks out like a sore thumb when I look at it (doesn’t need it, but I drew an arrow pointing to it). I made it black and I think I should have made it purple-pink. The problem is, because it’s foundation-pieced, I have to take apart several sections in order to replace it. That’s the type of thing that will make this quilt a UFO faster than anything else. I’m thinking that maybe I will keep working on the rest of the quilt and delay making a decision until I’m ready to sew it all together.
Rusty was trying to help. As soon as I snapped the first picture, he was helping. Perhaps he was trying to cover up the problem area. I wouldn’t want to hurt his feelings by telling him so, but his aim is way off.
Fall is definitely here, but we’ve been getting unseasonal cool temperatures. Like, Brrrrr! Down to near freezing in the mornings, and not a whole lot of warming up by the afternoon. Not much getting done in the backyard, but it does make for some pretty pictures. I spent last Sunday at Desert Hills Ranch in Ashcroft. They’ve expanded their public viewing area and they’ve done a fantastic job of it. They’re becoming quite popular, with the new retail store with bedding plants, freshly harvested vegetables from their fields, the goats and horses that the kids (and kid-like adults) love, nicely arranged old farm equipment and more. You can spend a day down there and not be bored.
I can spend a day down there just taking pictures, It’s my type of place. When I was a child growing up in Ontario, my dad used to take us out onto the county roads for a Sunday drive and we’d usually end up at a farmers’ co-op or a retail store attached to a farm, where we’d buy pumpkins and gourds and Indian corn and fresh apple juice. I’d glad to see that tradition carrying on.
Until next time,