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Showing posts from December, 2010

Twenty Four Nine Patches

23 nine patches with dark corners and 1 with light corners.
Usually when I'm working on something and estimate when I'll be finished, I'm wrong.  It always, always takes longer.
Guess what!  This time it went faster than I imagined.  The nine patches came together quickly and I've had more time this holiday season to quilt than I thought I would.
The next step involves more blocks but they are smaller and can be mass produced.  This time, I'm not even going to guess how long they will take.

The stockings were hung ...

Isn't this cute?  I found the free pattern last year and planned on stitching it sometime this year.  I finished just in time.
You can find the pattern here.  You have to scroll down a bit.  I couldn't figure out how to link directly.  The site is in Russian.
When it was time to finish, I withdrew threads so that the border would be even.  I liked the look and wove red threads into the withdrawn area.  Now it looks even better and the red lines made it easier to center.  I'll have to remember that finishing technique.

It is finished with a simple felt back and a ribbon scrap.

Merry Christmas!

Vintage Erica

It seems like I can't stop making ornaments this season.
This is a crewel kit from Erica Wilson I purchased at Goodwill.  At first, I hesitated to call it a vintage kit, but then, I looked up vintage.  There is general agreement that something is vintage when it's at least 30 years old.

The date stamp on the fabric clinches it - the kit is vintage.  It's kind of scary when something from when you were growing up is now vintage.
I also wonder about what the kit has been doing all these years.  Did it have one owner or dozens?  Was it a spur of the moment purchase which was forgotten in a drawer?  Was it a well meaning gift to the wrong person?  Was it going to be started "next week"?
I'll never know - but I'll try my best to get it finished.  The result will be 3 felt birds covered with metallic stitches and sequins - how fun!

17 fabric squares

I've started my next quilt - this time it's a lap quilt.
The first step was to cut 17 background squares.  I used 2 quite busy fabrics.  I have a feeling this quilt will be quite lively.

I've sorted and arranged different fabric scraps and I think I've narrowed it down to the final colors.  This quilt is from a book and I want to keep the same feel as the original quilt - an antique reproduction.  I wanted the quilt to be mostly red, but most of my red fabrics were rejected as being too modern looking. 
A new project is always exciting and I feel energized and ready to go.  Although I want to start piecing immediately I'm going to be taking it slow.  I'll probably get a few more blocks done every weekend.
The next quilt post will after I hit another milestone in the construction.

Christmas Squares & Turning the Corner

Here's my latest design.
It seems like I've been working on this all year long.  I've been planning having it done every weekend since Thanksgiving but things kept getting in the way.
The main design is four squares.  Each one has a slightly different border and a slightly different center.
I decided I needed an outer border around the squares.  Typically, I'll figure out how long the border needs to be and break it up into sections.  For example, a border of 70 stitches will have 10 repeats of a 7 stitch design or 7 repeats of a 10 stitch design.
In this case, I wasn't in a math mood.  So, I played around with a design on graph paper until I had a repeat that I liked.  I centered it over the design and repeated it past the edges on two sides.  Where the designs met I simply erased stitches and added others until I came up with something I liked.  This time, the plan worked out well.  I like how the chain turns the corner.

This is the bottom left square and is my favori…

Pretty Paper

I love pretty papers and have a hard time throwing them away.
My favorite papers include calendars and Christmas cards.
Instead of saving whole Christmas cards I've taken to cutting out interesting circles and saving them instead.
I've turned a whole box of them into garlands and gift labels.

There are so many styles that I can always find one to suit the recipient.

A new batch of cards has started arriving in the mail!  More pretty papers for my collection!  I wonder what I'll turn them into next year.

Mini Twisted Cords

Twisted Cording is a great way to finish stitched items.  But sometimes the cord can be too much.
The center cord is made from about 6 lengths of floss.  The rest are made of individual strands of floss.
The reddish ones one the left are 3 strands of red floss, 2 strands of green, 1 strand of pink and one strand of blending filament.  The skinny green one was probably made of only 3 strands.
I like the delicate look of the mini twisted cords.  And I like the subtle color when using different colors of floss.

And it makes a great finishing touch for an ornament.