Monday, February 28, 2011

Sharpen needles, Get thready, ....... Sew!

Ready to Sew A Bit and send along?

In THIS POST I explained about the base of the pincushion. 

I know some of them are already ready and waiting to be sent....  In case you need a little inspiration......

Marina has done hers:  

There is also a picture of an earlier crazy pincushion she had made as a swap HERE

Other inspiration can be found at Sandi's blogpost HERE where she made a needlecase....

Michelle has made a lovely fun needlebook with felt circles and wool HERE

Sue Spargo has just heaps of pictures all through her blog HERE, and of course

Kaaren's blogpost HERE where you can find instructions on attaching shapes, even some patterns of shapes.  As Kaaren says - the sky's the limit.

There are 3 groups of us and everyone is listed in my sidebar with links to their blogs so you can visit everyone easily to get inspiration from each other and also encourage one another. 

I love comments (I think we all do) and I always reply to them - be sure to have your comments on No Reply (see Chookyblue's instructions HERE) and feel free to add your pictures to the Flickr account HERE.

There are others who have said they plan to sew along too making their own so we would love to see your artworks too.....

My base is base is ready for posting:

The groups have been sorted and emails gone out - let me know if yours hasn't arrived!
...Whether you make this on your own or in a group I hope you all have lots of fun.....

My camera is home and there is lots to show.... read you soon.....

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Christmas OPAM for February

I have had some of these stitcheries around for a while.... I have finally finished this bag which is going into my Christmas box where I join with Allie's Christmas throughout the Year.... great inspiration

The bag is quite huge....

Some close up pictures of the stitchery .....

... and this is the back of the bag....

I have started another set of stitcheries.... I think this will be quite a useful tote because of the size - holds lots of wine fabric  ... next time I'll remember the pockets!

Just off to pop off to Allie's and see what others have made this month.... oh how I love a quiet Sunday morning......

Friday, February 25, 2011

Colourful Friday and Christmas finishes

You have all met our little Grandie#3 - he featured in my last post..... He is Kiwi Australian - and I am very happy that his family on his dad's side are fine.. they live in Christchurch .. had all their windows and water pipes broken - and of course got a huge big fright.... so glad they are safe though and our thoughts are with them and all other New Zealanders at this time.....

Robyn hosts Colourful Fridays.... I enjoy searching around for things ..... this week .  I still don't have my camera so I did a search through my computer files....

I found fabrics............

I found things......

I found bags......

I found abstract .....

It is also the 25th when we show our One Christmas Item per Month hosted by Narelle

I am in a Christmas Block group and made one for Crafty Pugs this month
It was a new block for me and the first one was a practice run but I liked it so much I decided to use some Insul-bright and make up this hot pot stand

I hope you all have a colourful friday and maybe get a Christmas item done??

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Pencil Roll

I had a wonderful few days away..... and guess what.... I left my camera behind down south.... so I have to wait for it to be posted back up to me..... silly silly... !  I will tell you bits about the trip - and all the lovely post that was waiting for me when I got home ..... when I have my photographic evidence!

I first want to mention the sadness of the earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand.... you would have all seen it on the news I am sure - my thoughts are with our special neighbours at this time.  Hugz

I have been determined to start on Christmas gifts early so I made an order....
before I left I received this:

Oh,  so lovely rows of elephants.......

and oh so lovely colours

for this lovely pencil roll
what a lot of beautiful work

This magical pencil roll is made by Leanne
she was making for a market and I saw these on her blog and knew I had to get one

Leanne was wonderful and waited for the floods to subside so the post wouldn't get wet 

it came with a magical home made card ....

I soon knew it couldn't be a gift 

It has to be one of those special colouring pencils at Nana's house

Widget tried them out 

...... fast drawing .....

he was so good about putting them back too......

Thanks Leanne.... so very beautifully made

If you haven't met Leanne have a pop round to her blog - there is so much deliciousness to read and see

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Ladies... sharpen your needles.....

Crazy Pincushion Sew-A- Bit will 'officially' launch at the beginning of March......

Kaaren from The Painted Quilt has kindly said we can use her tutorial and design for this wonderful pincushion.... this is a picture of Kaaren's.....

Isn't is so-o-o-o-o-o lovely and fun?

of course... we will all be making ours the same but different...

So those who are joining in the fun you can start getting your bits and pieces...... we will all make a base which will be sent to the next person.... so even without your group names you can start whenever you like.....

There will be 4 or 5 people in each group.

I am away for a week but I will get the list out to you before March

We will be posting overseas sometimes so there is no problem starting early ..... we have representatives from Canada, Australia, USA - so we will have well travelled pincushions...

Gather your pieces of felt.. and some wadding to pin it to....
(I have also used a piece of felt as a backing to pin your felt .. or even some fabric will do)
.... don't feel you can't use what you have....

You can see instructions to make the base HERE on Kaaren's site.  At this stage MAKE YOUR BASE and BASTE THE EDGES.  That is what you will be sending on to the next person.......

Think about the size of the pincushion... remember we are posting overseas ... I would recommend about 6" diameter.  I used a small dessert bowl for a template.

 ~ these are waiting to be basted ~

The bases should be ready for posting to the next person at the beginning of March... and then on to the next person at fortnightly intervals....

at the end of the round your base will come back to you - with a new look and a backing

Don't be shy to show what you have made... I find even if I see a photograph the real thing is still a lovely surprise... or just a sneak peak if you like...... and let me know if you have posted it on your blog and I will do a link up each fortnight.  Or send me a picture to include.........
I have also started a Flckr group started to upload your pictures
Go HERE to look and upload

If there is anyone who wants to make on their own but keeping up with us - please join in with including your pictures

Replies to Comments
I have seen several bloggers remark about "No-reply" comments
Just to let you know I really appreciate comments and I reply to all of them (maybe the occasional slip!!)
If you aren't getting a reply to a comment it is likely you are set on a No-Reply
If you need help with the setting visit Chookyblue's easy instructions HERE
~ of course you may prefer it that way - and that is okay too! ~
(eg: Maricarmen - I would love to answer you!)

However.... for the next week I will be late answering.... I am away for a week
~ read you later ~

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Tuesday Treasure

Melody from The House on the Side of the Hill hosts Tuesday Treasure and today she asked what we treasure in our surrounds......

Like Melody we also have the birds.... I love them coming to visit

One of my many favourites are these Pale Headed Rosella's

they have the sweetest chirp and loopy flight
they are also very shy so I feel lucky when they stay long enough for a photo

yesterday I spotted a visitor at the feeding area

can you spot him?

we'll have a closer look

.... basking in the sun....
.... like he owns the place ....

I wonder who else has linked up HERE today

Thanks Melody
it was fun to look outdoors

Monday, February 14, 2011

Preparing for Quilting ....

Remember this that Tall Handsome made for me..... so I don't have to grovel on the floor...
(you can read it HERE)

I thought I would just show you my way of preparing a top for quilting

I have to tell you I was very nervous when I first decided to do this myself

Gather your supplies....

Masking tape
Bulldog clips
Quilt top, backing and wadding
Quilting Pins (the curve in them makes life a lot easier than ordinary safety pins)

just to show how quick and easy this is my starting time
aren't those gecko's cute?

starting with the backing.... give it a press

lay it on the table RIGHT SIDE DOWN
and clip to the sides where it reaches over the edge...
pull taught and clip on the other side

place tape on the edges that do not go over the edge of the table
pull taught and tape the other side

Place the wadding on
(you can give this a press too if you want - I don't)
smooth over using a ruler
going from the centre outwards

carefully remove the clips one at a time while you hold the fabric taught and reclip to include the wadding
do exactly the same all the way around
you do not remove the tape... just add more on the wadding layer

place the pressed quilt top RIGHT SIDE UP

ensure the quilt top fits within the backing and wadding
there should be a couple of inches on each side
(when you are doing your own quilting 2" is enough)

 don't forget to check on the sides that overhang....
it is a real pain to pin and then discover the backing is not big enough!!

smooth with a ruler from centre outwards
then clip and tape as with the backing and wadding

these next series show the difference it makes to smoothing properly

placed on top and smoothed out with the hand to get the quilt settled in the right place before starting with the ruler

  smoothed with the ruler
 you can see that bump on the bottom left
that is where the quilt is laying over a clip

taped and clipped taught

now you are ready to pin

just pop in and out
I pin at about 4 inch intervals

have in mind how you are going to quilt so that you can pin away from those lines
- on this quilt I was going in straight diagonal lines

I just put the pins in and then go over the whole top at the end closing the pins

once you have closed the pins just crouch down and look at it with your eyes at table height
you can quicky find that pin that isn't closed
before your finger does! 

 once it is all pinned you will need to take off the tape and clip... and then move the quilt carefully and stretch and tape any overhanging edges 

that is hard to explain but if you had this over the edge:

you need to move the (mostly pinned) quilt and stretch, smooth and tape these edges and pin them... in just the same way...

 this picture shows the pinned part and the not pinned part

soon it will all be pinned - 35 minutes

quilt as desired....

then of course the binding will be added

 I'd love to know if you have any good tips for quilting  

I found last week there is a special foot for quilting in the ditch - spreads out the seams so you don't go off seam so often
I never knew there was such a thing

Hoping you have a wonderful week
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