Sunday, February 28, 2010

Stash Report Sunday - February 28, 2010

Two months into the year and I'm very happy with my progress.

Lots of quilting happened this week on Fiddlesticks. Unfortunately, I won't count that as used until the quilt is completed.

Yesterday Momcat and Cathy (Cat in the Sewing Room) went to The Fabric Shack. Momcat wanted binding fabric for Fiddlesticks. After shopping the stash nothing looked right. There were two prints in shades of blue that could work, so she bought 1.5 yards of each. Yep, that means the blue that doesn't play well with Fiddlesticks goes into our stash.  However, that's all the fabric she got, so I'm proud of her.

Used this Week:     0 yards
Used year to Date: 64.6 yards
Added this Week:    3 yards
Added Year to Date: 32.5 yards

Net Used for 2010:     32.1 yards

Visit Judy's blog to see how everyone else is doing.

Lots of things are on the schedule for this week. Momcat still needs to finish her three pay-it-forward gifts, plus Fiddlesticks. Then there are minor issues like, say, going to her job, getting a CT scan, and having a court date.

What will you add to creation today?


Saturday, February 27, 2010

A Giveaway at Jandi's

Jandi has switched from Wordpress to Blogger. In order to get out her new blog address she's hosting a wonderful give-away. 

She has great tutorials and a nice, friendly writing style.

Good luck (but I I hope I win)!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Fiddlesticks Quilting

As you know, Butch and Sundance were holding Momcat's place at the sewing machine for when she felt like going back to do some more quilting on Fiddlesticks.

I thought I'd take you through an easy quilting technique. Experienced quilters will already know this trick, but some of you beginners may appreciate this.  It's especially helpful to those of us who do not use a long-arm machine. All piecing and quilting here is done on a Janome 6260QC.

For this quilt I wanted very simple quilting and at an angle to add interest to all the squares and rectangles in the piecing.

I decided to quilt at a 60 degree angle from the top and bottom borders.  First I found the 60 degree line on my ruler and laid that line on top of the border where I wanted to begin my quilting.

The secret tool is 1-inch wide masking tape. Blue painters' tape works great, too. I placed the tape at either side of the ruler, which happens to be 6" wide.

I followed that line all the way up to the next border area.

Now I'll sew on either side of the masking tape. The inner lines will be 6" apart, just as the ruler is. Here's how it looks after it's sewn and the masking tape is removed. TIP: Try not to sew on the tape itself. From experience I can tell you that trying to tweeze the tape out of those stitches is a real pain.

When I'm done following this part of the plan I'll then center a piece of masking tape at 3", precisely between the 6" space left open. Therefore, my overall quilting plan will be two lines 1" apart every 2.5".

Too much math for you? Don't worry about that part then. Just know that masking tape and a ruler will give you a perfect quilting line to follow without dealing with pencils, chalk or the quilting bar on your sewing machine.

Looks like Butch is ready to hold down some more tape.

Happy creating!


Sunday, February 21, 2010

Stash Report - February 21, 2010

Very little sewing happened here this week. Momcat finally got to the ear, nose and throat specialist. She's on a third round of antibiotics, three different decongestants, has a CT scan scheduled in two weeks and will have a flex scope after that. She's been croaking and a bit draggy from all the meds.

She did start quilting a top that she finished in April of last year. I don't know why, but she doesn't like laying the quilt out on the floor to baste it only to have all five of us kitties helping her. Sundance is really good about repositioning the masking tape holding down the back. Butch likes to smooth out all the lumps (sometimes he makes new ones). Trouble prefers burrowing underneath the backing just to make sure there's no dust on the floor. Logan sits in the very middle of everything. I like to ensure that all the safety pins are closed, so I follow Momcat along as she pins. I really don't understand why this frustrates her so.

I did get to help her with some knitting. I love knitting! Unlike my younger siblings, I don't grab for the yarn or try to get the needles. I just like cuddling up next to Momcat on the recliner knowing that she's going to be there for a little while.

Oh yes, the stash report. Our numbers are great this week because Momcat donated 25 yards of fabric to a local charity. Even though we didn't sew it, it comes from our stash for a good cause. So we're counting it as stash used. 

Used this Week:     25 yards
Used year to Date: 64.6 yards
Added this Week:    0 yards
Added Year to Date: 29.5 yards

Net Used for 2010:     35.1 yards

Here's a hint of what we're likely to finish next week. You can see that Butch and Sundance are holding Momcat's place until she feels like getting back to the sewing machine.

Now hop on over to Judy's blog to see how everyone else is doing!

And don't forget to take 15 minutes to create,


Wednesday, February 17, 2010

I'm A Winner!

Of course, I already know I'm a winner. All of us cats know we're winners and that the rest of you are losers. Harsh, but true.

But this time I won something from another blogger!

Awhile back Shellie was going through some of her things and decided to be generous in sharing those items that she no longer wanted or needed.  I mentioned that I liked the rubber stamps so look what came in the mail!

Momcat really likes using rubber stamps when she makes quilt labels. The angels are especially perfect for that. I prefer the cat and the butterfly.

Thanks Shellie!


Here's how the snow looked using the Pi-Cam. This shot is from my perch on the living room window sill. Take a look at those icicles!  Momcat and Philip spent time shoveling today. I'm so glad that I'm an indoor kitty.

Maggie, Maggie....back up! You're getting too close to the Pi-Cam. Get your big doggy drool away from here!

Good thing I jumped onto the bookcase and out of your reach.

Hoping you don't have to smell doggy breath during your 15 minutes of creating. DAWGS, Bah! Humbug!


Monday, February 15, 2010

Another Snow Day = Snowball Blocks

We're in the midst of a snowstorm here with accumulations of 9 inches by tomorrow morning. That's on top of the four already on the ground. Which means that Momcat doesn't have to worry about substitute teaching for a few days.  And another storm is due in by the end of this week. Even Maggie is tired of the snow. She's gone from making doggy snow angels to coming in as soon after she makes the snow yellow as possible.

Which made today the perfect time to work on the snowball and nine-patch blocks for our Quilt Along.  Regina (bitnbyaquiltingbug) and Momcat are leading the way in this relaxing quilt along. Feel free to join us by leaving a comment and Momcat and/or Regina will add your blog address to the sidebar. Regina also has a WONDERFUL post with links to everybody's blocks.

Six blocks per month is what we're committed to making. This is Month Two. Doesn't matter if you concentrate on the snowballs, the nine-patches or a combination of the two. And feel free to join in whenever you can.

As of this afternoon, I have 22 blocks done. Momcat and I have been working ahead just a little because when the house goes on the market in April we might have to put our sewing projects away and concentrate on things like knitting and cross-stitching that take up less space.

So here's 20 of the blocks to give you a flavor of how ours is looking.  I love it!

Philip's girlfriend Leanne decided to join us for the day and will be staying in the guest room overnight since the roads are so bad. You can see that the two of them have made themselves comfy in front of the TV to watch the Olympics. At least they made room for Maggie!

Dinner is going to consist of macaroni & cheese, chicken strips, broccoli and rolls.

If you're snowed in, find a way to be content. Actually, the same is true even if you're not snowed in!


Sunday, February 14, 2010

Stash Report Sunday - February 14, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day!

This week we made three more blankets for Haiti and the Bloomin' Posies sample for the store. The store sample is not included in the stash report since it didn't come from our stash, with the small exception of a fat eighth worth of scraps.  We're making slow but steady progress in the right direction!

Used this Week:     3.1 yards
Used year to Date: 39.6 yards
Added this Week:    0 yards
Added Year to Date: 29.5 yards

Net Used for 2010:     10.1 yards

Don't forget to hop over to Judy Laquidara's blog to see how everyone else is doing.

Happy stitching!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Blankets for Haiti

Here's a picture of 27 flannel blankets ready to be packed and shipped tomorrow, bound for Haiti relief. Many thanks to Momcat's friend Jeanette for making 18 of these!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Plaid Posies Finished

Just a few minutes ago we completed the Plaid Posies twin-size topper. It's displayed here on a queen-size bed just to give you an idea how it looks. I can hardly wait to see what the shop does with it in terms of quilting, especially since there's all that great background with which to work.

You'll notice that I didn't use many plaids at all so we may have to give this a new name. Bloomin' Posies perhaps?

I purposefully went for an asymmetrical look and I like how it turned out.

January In Review

Now that we're almost halfway through February, it's time to see how January fared in terms of 2010's resolutions.

  •  Finish 1 Christmas gift/project per month.  I completed a couple of cross-stitched items that I can't show.
  • Do not purchase any patterns or books. No purchases made!
  • Except for backgrounds, purchases must be made for a specific project. The only purchases I made were for the upcoming Civil War log cabin quilt I'm going to make.
  • Finish two projects before starting a new one. I've cleared the decks and am ready to cut another project!
  • Give thanks daily. I think gratitude is so ingrained in my nature that I am constantly giving thanks.
  • Go out with friends at least monthly. I'm blessed with good friends who rescue me when I'm getting a bit isolated.
Month One has been a success.  I better get going on a Christmas project this month or else February won't be looking quite so good.


This Saturday Momcat and her BFF Kim will be joining the Greater Cincinnati chapter of Project Linus for their Blankets for Haiti event. The goal nationwide is to make, collect and send 20,000 blankets to Haiti. Project Linus is working directly with Haiti aide organizations to make this happen.

The blankets are simple one-yard cuts of either flannel or fleece hemmed on all four sides. 

Momcat will be your special correspondent to take pictures of the event for you and give you a report about how many blankets were collected locally. The goal for our chapter is 1,000. I have a feeling we'll surpass that!

Health Update:  We had a huge snowfall this week with all the surrounding counties declaring Level 3 snow emergencies. That meant Momcat had to reschedule her appointment with the otolar....ottolaryn....otlart...ear, nose and throat doctor. So she's still coughing and struggling to speak. I'm sure there are a lot of people who are probably glad of her paralyzed vocal cords!  The new appointment is scheduled for this Monday afternoon. Thanks everyone, for your get well wishes.

Have you created for 15 minutes today?


Sunday, February 7, 2010

Stash Report Sunday - February 7, 2010

Momcat is back in my good graces. She's been pretty sick and is going to see a special doctor on Tuesday to help her. Even so, we've managed to get a few things done this week.

Used this Week:     4.25 yards
Used year to Date: 36.5 yards
Added this Week:    0 yards
Added Year to Date: 29.5 yards

Net Used for 2010:     7.0 yards
We made another pillowcase and three more blankets for Haiti. 
Momcat also has been working on a sample for the shop. We don't do applique very often and we've never made flower stems. This whole sample is a flower garden with stems that finish at 1/4". Even with doing a couple of practice stems, getting the machine blanket stitch to look just right has been a challenge.  Hopefully we'll finish it up in the next day or two and take a picture before turning it in.

If any of you have the book Toppers by Nancy Smith and Lynda Milligan, the sample is "Plaid Posies."

Hop on over to Judy's blog to see how everyone else is doing.

Happy creating (for at least 15 minutes a day)!
Pi and Momcat