Thursday, 31 December 2020

A sneak peek...

A sneak peek at the mystery hexie quilt.  Have cut enough hexagons to get started. The random cutting of the fabric will create unplanned and unexpected surprise elements when they get sewn together to create the flowers.
The bird now has a yellow beak. The sled is stitched and the badgers has been started.
Fabrics have all been ironed and can go to the projects they belong to. So very grateful they are now colourfast. Prepped and ready for a new year. 
The name says it all, wishing everyone a new year filled with kindness, health, laughter, happiness and peace. May 2021 bring prosperity and joy to all. We all grew more than we knew we could this past year, we are stronger for it. Take time to be quiet and be just you.  Embrace each day, seeing the sunrises and the sunsets, finding inspiration in the bounty of nature.

Wednesday, 30 December 2020

How many more sleeps?...

In our household, excitement is in the air. We can not wait for 2021 to arrive! Kissing the old year good bye and welcoming the new year with eagerness of children awaiting  Santa Claus. It has been years since we were this keen to let go of a year. Above is the fabrics which got washed and then given a vinegar bath. These no longer have colour run issues. They will be ironed and will be used soon.
The banner is now done and the month added. Located the yellow floss in another project. The bird will get his beak now.One of the books on my gift list, which I  received for Christmas. It is filled with iron on transfers and at the back of the book it has a handy pocket to keep the transfers in. 

Tuesday, 29 December 2020

Looking forward to new beginnings...

This is the fourth attempt at this blog post. It keeps on losing it even if it is saved! Frustrating to say the least. So the fabric above will be used for the mystery hexie quilt.  The blue for the background and all the rest for flowers leaves, mediums and lights. In total four meters of fabric. Have cut out most of the blues,  just need to cut out the rest.  Will do it with the AccuQuilt and the hexagon die.
This is the idea for the fusible foundation and triangle squares. 
Once all is trimmed to the correct size, they will be arranged an fused. Then they will be sewn in horizontal and vertical lines. 
Think a start will be made on this one. Have had these hand dyed fabrics for many years and did not know what to do with them.
The banner and bird was added, he still needs his beak. 

Monday, 28 December 2020

Just enjoying the sunshine...

The sun finally came out late in the day and we were very happy to see it after days of grey skies and snow. Diane and myself managed to go for a socially distanced walk,  the forest was beautiful.  Must take my camera with on one of the walks in the forest. 
Quilt sandwiches for a friend's daughter and husband. They use these in their business. Used the new walking foot for these ones.The quilting is done on the first row, the blue wash away pen lines are removed and dry. The next row to be quilted will be the green one, have not decided what the red one will be yet, so will skip that one for now.
Found a packet with these triangle squares together with an iron on grid fusible. One then use the grid lines to sew the squares together. Have had this for almost twenty years, time to use it. These fabrics was used in Grandma's Album No 2. A pattern from Robert Callahan, it appeared in McCalls Quilting magazines many years ago.
One trim the squares to the size of the large squares,  fuse and sew.
Got some books from the library,  will be reading these two over the coming days. Read her first book and the ones that followed years ago. Recently discovered she has written a number of books since 2014.  Have you read any of Jennifer Chiaverini's ?

Sunday, 27 December 2020

Snow and more snow...

Since Christmas eve, the snow has been coming down. It is like "Groundhog Day" the movie. We shovel the driveway and the paths. Then the next day we repeat the process with the snow. We prefer once a day compared to every couple of hours.
Finished stitching the frame. Next the month banner and then the picture of the animals.
This is what it will look like completed after twelve months. Started this on an Aide fabric, which did not work. Found some 28 Linen, Antique White Lugana fabric instead. 
Drew lines a half an inch from the shapes and quilted the lines around the first row of the Sugaridoo QAL quilt.  Spritzed the blue lines with water to remove them. Waiting for them to dry before moving to the next part to quilt. Taking the day at a slow pace. 2021 will be my Tortoise and the Hare year. It will be all about taking things at a moderate pace. Eating an elephant a bite at a time.

Saturday, 26 December 2020

A very white one...

We woke up to snow on Christmas morning and it snowed for a large part of the day. Normally on a day like this the kids would all be going to and play on the hill with all their sleds going down the hill. Not so, they were all at home, opening presents and it was quiet and very peaceful.  Today we suspect that will change, as more snow fell again overnight.
Started a stitched piece. It was the 2018 Stitch a long from the Tiny Modernist.  Will be working on them, one a month.  Very colourful with animals and the months of the year. This one is for January. 
It was a day where Christmas dinner was cooked, dessert was baked, presents opened,  time spent with family via zoom. A walk happened and saw two snowmen being created along the path.  As well as shovelling the snow. Hubby has decided the replacement part for the snowblower will be done today. A great thing, as we seem to get more snow than normal.

Friday, 25 December 2020

Merry Christmas.

Merry Christmas to you and your family.  May each and every one have a day filled with, peace, love and joy. 
May we all remember the reason for the season,  never forgetting the angels we all have that is with us each and everyday. We are blessed in so many ways, some we do not even know of, we did not know what this year would bring for all of us, but here it is Christmas Day!

Thursday, 24 December 2020

The countdown started...

Everyone is excited, especially the children.  Our cat has been playing with gifts which we placed under the tree, they arrived from Australia.  My brother and his wife  has a cat, so one can just imagine that must be what the cat is picking up on. She has been climbing in our tree and plays with the decorations. We have tinsel in parts of the house that should not have any, yet it is there. On the twenty fourth of December the advent calendar said:  Relax and enjoy the day,  looking forward to celebrating baby Jesus's birthday, the reason we celebrate Christmas. 
Did manage to do some sewing yesterday, with the in the ditch walking foot. No thinking required, just follow the ditch and sew. It is looking good. Hoped to have this quilt finished before the end of the year,  have decided not to rush it, rather finish it well. Will continue on this well into next year, do not mind. It will have 2021 on the label.
We all deserve a rainbow of happiness,  health and prosperity in our stockings this year...


We all have special ways we do things and spend the holidays. Adapting them to suit our current needs and wants is a progressive way to move forward and not get stuck in a rut. So easy to embrace more ways to celebrate the season.  More fresh fruit and vegetables and less cookies and chocolate.  We all feel so much better and just getting a  walk in, gives us the peace and quiet we all need to have. We are all blessed with a chance to just be. On the twenty third day of December the advent calendar said: Get the stockings out and ready to hang up, so here they are.

Wednesday, 23 December 2020

Started the countdown to Christmas day, planning ahead..

Now the house smells like a bakery and soon it will be filled with the cooking of Christmas.   The menu and meals will be simple this year and we are okay with it. Cooking it will take no time at all. Gifting us with more time to spend with our loved ones, we got our priorities right. We are still recovering from a year which most would rather forget than remember.  It has not been an easy one. While we reflect on the year, we are also looking to the future.  So on the twenty second day of December the advent calendar said:  Plan ahead, have something to look forward to that we are passionate about! 
 This will be a mystery hexie project, based on an antique quilt for a young child. So if anyone wants to follow along in the new year, it will start on the first of January 2021.  It has a floral theme and very much a scrappy layout. A few years back at quilt retreat, found some fabric which has some of the original antique quilt colours, a close match. So will be making a reproduction of the original antique quilt.  Will be working on it a row a month.  It has 63 rows in the main part of the quilt. The borders is an applique technique with hexies, which I have never seen before.
One can use dies to make the prepping a lot easier and quicker. No cutting by hand. Just getting to the good bits, sewing the hexies into a quilt.
These ones was meant for a project which never took flight, have found something while in the sewing room. At the end it will be a wall hanging. 

Tuesday, 22 December 2020

Wrapping gifts...

Every year before Christmas arrives I get asked when the weather turns cold, so when are you baking those ginger cookies? No gentle hint about it, in life we prefer it if one ask the question straight out. Not sort of go about it in a roundabout way.  So on the twenty first day of December the advent calendar said: Bake more cookies, wrap all the gifts. That is done, just one more to wrap. The tags everyone whom we could not meet because of the lockdown and the pandemic will be emailed to us, then printed and attached to the gifts. Our son and his wife was going to be with us this year,  but alas that is not possible.  We decided in September that it was safer to postpone our get together under one roof until next year.
While looking for something else, I took a few moments to page through a cookery book from 1904. This is a Christmas fruit cake with a star on top.
We bought books and we all have our favourites. When one is needed, we go down to the basement and fetch it. Do not have a dedicated bookshelf in the kitchen for them. What is your go to book for baking and cooking?

The Christmas sweater...

We all have one, the ugly Christmas sweater. On the twentieth day of December the advent calendar said: Wear your ugly Christmas sweater. 
Not too difficult with the cold weather. We watched the news last night and they are predicting a white Christmas with a cold arctic blast, so just maybe we will get to build the snowman afterall...

Dear Santa..

Have you written your letter to Santa Claus? On the nineteenth  day of December the advent calendar said: Write a letter to Santa Claus.  A wee bit late,  just in time for Christmas.  It is a time of year when we all embrace our inner child.  In our family we make it special for the children, it is because of a special child that we celebrate Christmas. 
This box set of books we have had since the children were little.  It has been part of our family for many years. We read the stories to our kids growing up and we all celebrate our Christian faith,  not just at holiday times but on a daily basis. So when people tell me not to say Merry Christmas,  my reply is a simple one.  We celebrate the birth of baby Jesus, the reason for Christmas.  Just like we respect other faiths, repay the compliment.  
The puppy on this blog joined one very special family in April. He made many friends and he was the same size as all of them back then. He has now grown more, not quite to his full size, however his friends became scared of his size, this would not do. So he got creative and whenever he met one of them, he would lie down on the ground and makes himself as flat as possible for his friends. So they would not be intimidated by his size. He is still a puppy, albeit a very large one. He is a gentle giant of a puppy who is only nine months old.  He loves his doggie bed and soft minky fabric.  He takes all his treats and toys and put them on his bed like the treasures they are to him. This is his doggie Quilty for his very first Christmas. It is filled with some of the breeds of furry friends which he meets on a regular basis, meet Moose!

Sunday, 20 December 2020

Getting ready...

On the eighteenth day of December the advent calendar said: Get the house ready for the festive season.  So we make sure it is tidy and clean. We know the status quo will not last, our house is a home, very much lived in. We are firm believers in a clean house, then we just feel better and can relax and enjoy the space we live in. Now it is ready for some more baking, which still needs to be done.
Do anyone remember these bicycle clips? In the early 90's these were used to contain the quilt sausage so one could fit it under the arm of a sewing machine to contain the bulk of the quilt while machine quilting a quilt. Had to put them into service on the above quilt. They still work as well now as they did way back then. I am showing my quilting age now. All the horizontal lines are quilted and the pins removed.  Next will be the in the ditch on all the colours.
The balls are finished with soft gold ribbons and lace.

Saturday, 19 December 2020

Spending time outdoors.

In the years gone by, no matter where we are, spending time outdoors is a must. So on the seventeenth day of December the advent calendar said: Plan outdoors activities.   We are eagerly awaiting some snow, not just to build a snowman but also to toboggan at the nearby hill. It is just missing snow, he soft fluffy kind. Then we will dress warmly and go and play in the snow!
 Diane is busy stitching the Holiday Quaker. 
These patchwork balls just needed ribbon to finish them. Got some this morning,  so they can be finished. Gold ribbon will work for all three with the metallic  fabric accents.
The next section will be quilted today.
The thread drawers have been unpacked, lists have been made of the colours which needs replacing,  this 40 weight Rayon thread by Marathon is my absolute favourite.  It is strong and versatile,  it is amazing for both machine quilting and embroidery.  It stays soft and never lose its colour or shine. Did not realize just how much of this I have used in the past couple of years.