Batiks, Stone Chips, Jelly Rolls, and Maybe More

It’s been a productive weekend here.  I finished all 36 HST blocks for a quilt top made with two batik charm packs and two stone chips charm packs.  There is 1 block made with different fabrics as I was one block short, but I think i made it fit in fairly well. 

Batik blocks :

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Stone chip blocks:

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And all the lovely blocks together:

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I’m going to use black as sashing between all the blocks.  I think it helps the colors pop.  And i love bright colors with black.

I also played around with a few strips from my jelly rolls to make a couple…squares. 
This first one is going to become an art quilt wall hanging.  I’ll give you a clue,  Oz.

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This second one was more playing around. Same strips of material as above,  but done differently.
I don’t know what I’ll do with this one:

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It started out like this below, until I attacked it with my rotary cutter :

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I also made a soup bowl cozy for my husband:

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My first one!  One corner is a little…wonky.  Tip: don’t use the corner for where you leave your opening to turn it right side out.  Oops.

It’s already been put to use! 

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Oh yeah,  I made banana bread a couple days ago,  and then homemade chicken noodle soup today. 

Let’s see,  what else. 
I finally got the arms and legs attached to the doll I’ve been working on since this summer. Lol.  And I’m working on a quilt top design using jelly rolls.  I’ve looked online and don’t see any made with this pattern.  Doesn’t mean it hasn’t been done,  I just haven’t found it yet.  I’ll show the results once I get that quilt top made. 

Oh! And I’m embroidering a skeleton.

Don’t worry,  it’s fabric!

Hope you had a great weekend,  whether productive or relaxing.  :)

Blind Tiles – Original Quilt Design

A few months ago,  my hubby and I went out to eat at a local restaurant.  While we were standing there waiting,  I was studying the tile floor and I started to see a pattern that appealed to me.  So I sketched it real quick in my notebook that I keep in my purse.

Later when we got home,  I grabbed some grid paper and started working on a design.  It changed quite a bit from the floor pattern,  as that did not make up “blocks”.

The result was a 7 different fabric,  21 piece block.  3 different size squares, one each of each color.

I made up a test block, using fabric from my stash,  to see how I liked the pattern.

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With the border I used,  which I think is around 2″, the finished size of this test block is 33×33″. I should have paid more attention to what sides my borders were on.

I have to say,  I was pretty happy with the resulting design.  So… I went fabric shopping!

I copied the pattern I made,  got out the colored pencils,  and started coloring in the blocks.  Then i played with the arrangement of the four pattern blocks.
I made up 4 identical blocks with fabric.

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Then i played around again with how to arrange them.  I came up with roughly 9 different ways these blocks could be arranged into a quilt top. I’ll share a couple here:

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(Sorry about the wrinkles. I think I was rushing the day I took these pictures).

That was about 7 months ago.  And the blocks just sat on the shelf,  whining occasionally  when I would cruise through the Wife Cave. Little fabric tears running down the shelves.  The occasional side  flipping over the edge trying to escape.

Sunday night,  I decided to finally put the blocks together.

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(I’m horrible about not noticing the wrinkles until I go to post, I see. It doesn’t help that the cats love to dive bomb and slide across anything I’m trying to take a picture of so I need to rush to get a photo without them in it).
This was the block arrangement I finally settled on.

[I also put together the strips for another quilt top but I'll shares that one in another post later.]

Monday,  I went up to Sew Crazy and picked out the fabrics for the borders for both quilt tops.

Tonight,  borders were added to Blind Tiles.

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Ta-da!

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My first original design for a quilt top!  Finished quilt size is roughly 66×66″ before quilting and binding.

Why the name Blind Tiles? Well,  the restaurant we were at that night has the word Blind in the name.  And the design was inspired by the tile floor.  :)

I am working on making the pattern easy to follow.  I will let you know when it is ready.

Future Embroidery – Based on Photo

Have you seen the commercials for Pure Michigan? They show how beautiful our state is and try to draw people here to visit.  It actually is a beautiful state,  especially late spring with all the green leaves and flowers blooming.  But the most beautiful time is in the fall,  when the leaves are changing and we see bright gold,  bold red,  vibrant orange, and all the muted shades in between.

On Facebook,  there is a page when people in our local town are posting photos from around the area, “Pure _________”. Flowers,  trees,  spiders,  gorgeous autumn colors,  peaceful water,  etc.

A couple of the photos really drew my eye.  Something in them just spoke to my creative mind.

One of which is the following photo by a lady named Mary Harris:

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That bright red leaf beckoned me. Drew me into the photo.  Then the whole branch of burgundy,  standing out from all that green.

As soon as I saw it,  I saw the potential for an embroidery design.  So I asked permission to use the photo and make a sketch.  Mary was kind enough to grant me permission.  After the sketch was done, I made sure she had the opportunity to see it,  and then I asked permission to use her photo on my blog,  which again she was nice enough to say yes.

Here is the sketch that was based on her photo:

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I want to make sure to keep that red leaf front and center.  Followed by the burgundy.  With the green as the perfect background.

I haven’t yet decided if this will be needle painted, satin stitched, feather stitched,  or just outlined.

Thank you again Mary! I hope to see more of your photos on the Facebook page.  You have a great eye.

I do have two more sketches done from two photos another lady took.  I’m waiting for the additional permission to use her photos here with the sketches.

I also have a few of my own sketches I’ll shares at a later date.

The Glass is Half-Full

This weekend flew by!  I barely got any stitching done,  although I did get quite a few sketches drawn up.  I’ll share those sometime this week hopefully.

And we did a big grocery shopping trip at Costco today.  (Poor checking account. .. )

Right now though,  I’m kicked back on the couch,  thinking I should really get to bed,  but my wine glass is only half full…

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See! It’s only half full!  And this wine defies gravity! !

This is part of an embroidery project I am making to hang in a local gallery in the spring,  along with some other embroidery projects,  and other artwork by the ladies in the fiber art group that I belong to.

I’m looking forward to it,  but man do I need to get a lot of stuff done!  I have embroidery projects that still need to be either framed or backed and bound.  And more to make.  And I still need to finish the curtains for the guest bedroom. And the living room. And dining room.  Hm.

And now I’ve gotten into drawing,  and that’s grabbing my attention. 

I saw on Facebook a few times, this card that says something like,   “if you want to know what my brain is like,  imagine a Web browser with 8,000 tabs open all at once.”

That describes it perfectly!  But it’s time to close at least a few of those tabs and head to bed.  7am comes too early. 

Hexie Wine Coasters

These are good for more than just wine of course!  But there is something different about these coasters that makes them perfect for wine glasses.

First,  a few pictures from when I was making them.  Because of the way these are made,  what you see here is not how they will look once sewn together.

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I made these for a house warming gift.  It only took a couple hours to make all six because the pieces were already cut out.  They were kits made up for Sew Crazy. 

Close up of a couple prior to sewing.

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And now one after its been sewn and turned inside out.

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Still not done at this point.  Still needs to be top stitched to help shape it better.

All six finished:

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Here is the before picture again so you can see how they look a little different once finished:

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I should have arranged them in the same order.  Oh well. 

What’s that?  You want to see why they are good for wine glasses? 

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Ta-da!  You can slip the coaster around the base of the wine glass,  then the coaster fits with you as you move around the room!  Suggestion though. ..make sure the glass is empty first before sliding the coaster on.

Do You Doodle?

Just a quick post today.  We had a busy weekend and then i pulled a 15-16 hour workday yesterday,  so I haven’t done a whole lot of crafting in a few days.

Do you doodle?  What I mean by that is,  do you pick up a pen or pencil (or crayon) and draw random things on paper?  It could be the edge of a page of notes.  Something drawn on a small scrap of paper.  On the back of a placemat at a restaurant. In a sketch pad.  You get the idea.

With my job,  I sometimes have small bits of time where I’m just sitting and waiting.  The class is taking a test,  the instructor isn’t there yet,  I’m on standby, etc.  (For those that don’t know,  I provide C-print services for deaf students in college. The link I provided gives a good overview of what C-print is, although I use a different program than what is noted in the article).

So…I doodle!

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Some of my doodles I do more often than others.

This vine with flowers I’ve been doodling most of my life, with variations to the amount of flowers and direction of vines:

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I regularly draw hearts with the infinity symbol wrapping around it:

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And i often draw 3-dimensional objects,  rough drawing of course:

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Every so often,  my doodles veer off and something new appears,  like this odd little bird:

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Very odd little bird.  But he has potential. I think.  Haha.

So,  what do you doodle?

Sew Crazy, LLC

(Let’s hope this finally will upload and post.) 

A disclaimer first: While I do help out up at Sew Crazy occasionally,  I am not receiving pay or compensation for writing this review.  This may be seen as a bit of advertising,  but it is done out of my own free will.  This happens to be one of my favorite stores and i wanted to share it with you.

“Sew Crazy: you don’t have to be crazy to shop here,  we’ll train you!” 

Gwyn, the owner of Sew Crazy,  opened up the store almost two years ago.  If you are down in the dumps when you walk in,  you can rest assured you’ll probably be laughing shortly thereafter and smiling on your way out. She just has that type of personality.  And an amazing memory.  Visit a time or two and after that,  she will most likely greet you by name any time you walk in the door.  (I’m lucky when i can remember my own name!  So I’m personally amazed by this).

I hear someone in the background saying, “well,  where’s the goodies??”

Here they are!  Luscious fabrics. She has bright colors,  she has muted colors. Prints.  Solids. Stripes!  Shadowplay! Swirls! !  (Sadly I did not take individual bolt pictures. )

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There are numerous items throughout the store that have been made by the ladies who help out at the store.  Just about anything you see that’s a finished product can be offered as a class as well. 
Such as Tiny Fancyass Hats:

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She sells the small stream iron (love mine! !) And there is a class to make an iron caddy to go with it:

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Table runners,  coasters,  hot pads,  and bowl cozies can be made during the Make-It-And-Take-It Saturdays.  They can also be done separately as classes. Here is a matching set:

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And here are some of the bowl cozies that are already made up (also available in kits):

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Need some proof that the ladies of Sew Crazy are,  well,  crazy? 

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Customers are not innocent either,  some more guilty than others:

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I also have pictures of some of the quilts hanging around the shop but i want to talk with Gwyn before posting those pictures first,  make sure there aren’t any copyright issues with the original pattern quilts. 

Let me see what other pictures I can share:

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My favorite,  the jelly rolls! :

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Handmade soaps made by one of the ladies that works there.  And they are wonderful.  I’ve been using the oatmeal one and my skin is loving it. 

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That looks like all i can share right now. If you are ever in Michigan,  look up Sew Crazy,  LLC and come check it out!