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Monday, April 30, 2007


Well, now the pig has a mate who also has a short nose (sorry, snout). It must be the breed of pig they are. Lol.
The cow also has a short nose. Hmmm. Not sure what's going on here. The cow will be getting longer legs. She is far too well-endowed to make do with such short ones. I also have to figure out how to get the udder behind her back leg. The udder is made separately and not sewn in like I have done with the ears. That makes it a bit hard to put it behind the back leg but in front of the green between the legs. She is much more complicated than the pigs. Her tail is a tube of fabric with some frayed acrylic macrame cord for the end of it. I'm not sure about the eyes. I tried it with two eyes but she just looked a bit crazed. She needs just some eyelashes showing on the right side but since she doesn't have any on the left side that might look a bit odd. I also want to make her front leg a bit thicker.
Oh the fun of free-piecing! You need a really good seam ripper. The interesting part is that you never know what they will look like when they are done.

Friday, April 27, 2007

This Little Piggy

I thought I'd try a pig just for fun. He needs some work. His nose is too short and I have to figure out a different tail. The tail is made from a bit of polar fleece cut with the stretch and then stretched so that it curls. I think a small tube of the same fabric as the rest of the pig would look better and it needs to be set into the seam. The biggest problem with this type of free piecing, is remembering to make everything half an inch bigger than the finished size. I thought the nose was ridiculously long and pointed but when it was done, it didn't really look like a pig's nose at all. The ear needs to be more pointed and I will set it into the seam so it will stand up more.
If this keeps up, maybe the people will be Old MacDonald and his wife.

Thursday, April 26, 2007


I have been tagged by Meg at Life's Free Treats for the Thinking Blogger Award. I am flattered that my humble blog has made anyone think.

Now I am supposed to tag five other people whose blogs make me think. The problem is not in finding five, but in narrowing it down to five.

Tonya at Lazy Gal Quilting has been tagged several times but I include her because she introduced me to wonky houses and letters and that's all I am interested in quilting these days. She is also the first person outside of family, who left a comment on my blog, thus leading me into the wonderful world of quilting blogs.
Quilt Pixie does some amazing work and she is practically a neighbour.
Nellie's Needles has some amazing art on her blog and some very useful tutorials. She has helped me out on more than one occasion and that is very much appreciated.
Judy in the Dyes is always inspiring to this aspiring dyer.
Anne at Quilting Bebbs is always inspiring and does amazing machine quilting.

Whew! That was the hardest blog entry I have ever done! I have 278 feeds on my Bloglines list so chosing only five is a problem. There are dozens of others who deserve this award.

When I started my blog, it was to keep family members who lived far away, updated on their quilt progress. I had no idea that there was a huge blog family waiting for me out there. I have been so inspired by your stories and pictures that I feel my life has taken on a whole new dimension.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Little People

Here are some more little people. I made some red ones for Clare's Quilts for Leukemia. I will probably make a few more before sending them off. I thought I'd try something different with the Wizard. Does it remind you of Harry Potter? Does it need feet? It's too bad the boys don't have longer pants. Lol.
These little guys are fun to make but I'm not sure what to do with them. The bigger ones are about 8.5 inches square. (The red ones are exact). They seem to be getting bigger for some reason. I was going to make houses for them but I am afraid I'll end up with a huge quilt. I am aiming more at a wall hanging. Freddy has a few rows of them with trees between on the ones she shows in the book.
I guess I'll make a few more and see what happens.
Maybe somebody has an idea for some words to go with them. Ideas are welcome.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

What is She Up to Now??

This is my idea for the next quilt. Freddy Moran has some of these interesting people in Collaborative Quilting and I thought I'd give them a try. If I can get them looking the way I want I might build a house for each couple. So far I think I like the middle one the best. The lady in green is a bit too chesty. Lol. I should have cut the triangle a bit smaller at the top. I do like her big clunky clogs though. The man's legs are different sizes and there is a bit of a problem with his head. Maybe it's too big and off to one side a bit.
They are really fun to make although the feet are a bit challenging. Nothing comes close to the Rooster's feet though, so I'm not complaining.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Almost There

Today I put facing on the chicken house and all that remains is to topstitch it and hand sew the facing and hanging sleeve down. I put it up on the design wall to see if I should topstitch it or not. I think it will be more crisp if I do. The borders are a bit wavy but I hope it will straighten out with hanging. If not, well, "That's my style!". The quilting leaves somewhat to be desired in spots but I guess it's one more practice piece.

This morning in the mail I had a wonderful package from Sew Mama Sew Sewing Blog .I entered a contest they had and I won. The timing couldn't be better because I am now ready for a new project. I have no idea what it will be yet but I think some of these wonderful fabrics may make their way into it. Thank you so much, ladies.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Quilting the Chickens

The bag for the challenge is all done and I found some backing for the chickens at half price in Fabricland so at last I have started quilting the chickens.
Free Motion Quilting is still not my strength but I keep going at it anyway. Hopefully it will eventually get to the point where I am somewhat satisfied with it. I am lightly quilting the chickens and will do more intensive quilitng on the background so, hopefully, they will pop out a bit. I am going to use a narrow facing on the bottom part and the roof will be totally faced. I am thinking there could be a bit of a problem hanging it because of the way the eaves stick out. If it doesn't hang properly with a sleeve at the top of the roof, I will cut a thin piece of styrofoam to insert behind the facing of the roof. That is the main reason for facing the entire roof.
Now I am starting to think about what to do next. It's always exciting to plan a new project. I think it will be in bright colors like the jungle but that's as far as I have gotten towards a decision yet.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Bag Again

Here is the bag with the blue to attach the phone case and change purse. I am not so crazy about the back of it. Maybe I should have made the bottom gold piece a bit wider but I was trying to get a pocket for sunglasses. It still could have been wider and still worked. Oh well, not to worry. It's finished except for sewing the key holder on. I have to get some more brown thread for that but I am heading off to town shortly so it will be done this afternoon. I dyed some fabric blue for the lining. I just happened to have some dye that matched the blue I used on the back of the words.
Then it's back to the chicken coop if I can find some backing fabric that I like.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Progress Report

I have done quite a lot more work on my bag for the quilt show. I'm not sure about the chain on the side. It may be a bit too heavy for the phone case. I have some blue drawstrings or silver beads that might work as well. I will put something similar on the opposite side to hold the change purse. The back is the gold fabric with pockets of the striped fabric. I didn't put any words back there because I ran out of the rust fabric. Right now I am dyeing some blue fabric for the lining. I'm not sure I like the knot in the handle. I may just sew it down at the right length.
If anyone has any ideas on how to further embellish it I'd be open to suggestions. The main problem is that I am out of all the challenge fabrics and there is only a bit of the gold left. It rather limits the options.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Bag Challenge

I need backing for my chickens so while I am waiting for that, I started on a bag for the challenge at our local quilt show. I have had the fabrics for nearly a year and the deadline is approaching so I thought I had better get on it. I decided to use Tonya's wonky letters because I love making them. THe little phone case is from Shirley at Dyeing2 Design I hope Shirley doesn't mind my using her idea. The gold chain will attach the phone bag to the top of the bag. I think I will couch some dark brown yarn around the word Bag because it doesn't show up enough. I'll probably do a cloth shoulder strap and call it done. I'm not crazy about how this bag has turned out but after having the fabric staring at me for a year, I'm glad to get rid of it. I do much better when I have an idea and get fabrics to match than when trying to match an idea to fabrics that someone else has picked out.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

New Roof

I decided that the loft door needed to be narrower but that meant that I wouldn't have enough fabric for the roof. I tried a couple of different options. The best one is pinned up and the others are to the sides. The other option would be to get some pure black or something that looks like shingles.

Monday, April 09, 2007


First, I want to thank all of you for the comments! I was amazed at how many of you took the time to encourage me and to give an opinion on the roofline. Happily, nearly all of you liked the one I had pretty well decided to do.
I have made the fox and it wasn't easy! This is the second one. The first one was way too big. He could have devoured the entire chicken house. His tail is made separately and lined. I will just sew it on at the base and tack it down near the end. I made it that way because I really wanted a round end on it. I could also aplique it down, which I may do.
The roof is still just pinned on. I am not sure how to deal with the overhang. It looks better with an overhang but I am not sure how to finish it. I can't imagine binding around such sharp corners. Maybe I will make an envelope, but I'm not sure how that will work with those angles either.
Now to decide how to quilt it.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Which One

I have tried several different ways of finishing the chickens. I am a bit limited with the brown fabric. What I have up on the design wall is all that I have.
I think the pointed roof needs somthing up there at the point to relieve all that brown but I'm not sure what. I did think of piecing the year 2007 but I'm not sure if that would look strange or not. I also thought of a star but not sure what color. Any ideas?
The plain square frame looks good to me too because it doesn't distract from the chickens. I think it will sit there for a couple of days while I cook for Easter dinner. Maybe I'll get some opinions from my quilty granddaughters when they come on Easter Sunday.

Thursday, April 05, 2007


I am back at the chicken coop again. Dot kindly sent me a bit of egg fabric. It's quite strong contrast but I think a bit of it livens up the chicken house.
The whole piece is about 35" by 40" so I am not sure if I will try to make a house for them or just frame it with a dark color. It seems a bit large to make a house . I think it might just look like a sort of wonky frame. I may try it out on the design wall. Once it is all sewn together it will be a bit smaller too. I am always surprised how much smaller a piece gets when it's sewn together.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007


Today would have been my parents anniversary if my mother had lived. This is a picture of their wedding. Apparently there was a huge storm with a couple of feet of snow that day. He had to drive a horse and sleigh about 10 miles to get to the town where she lived. They look like a pretty happy couple to me. He just had his 93rd birthday.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Quilt as you Go

Here are the finished paintings done by my three Granddaugters. Quite a talented trio I would say!

I am quilting this one block by block and then assembling it. It's easier to quilt but harder to assemble so I'm not that much farther ahead. The quilitng is more complex this way than I could ever do in a whole quilt.

I am using a pattern from this book by Keryn Emmerson of Quilting Twin.

There is a different fabric on the back of each block. I have tried to match the back to the front. I am afraid I might run out of the gray fabric before I am done. I had not planned on using it on the back when I bought it.