Sunday, February 24, 2013

Slow Week

Progress on anything this week was difficult due to various appointments/meeting Monday - Wednesday and then somehow throwing my back out on Wednesday night.  I've spent the last several days migrating slowly from bed to the couch and back to bed, accompanied by a heating pad.  Not fun at all.  And stitching whilst being horizontal is not a skill I've ever perfected... Oh well.

I did manage to get the table runner sandwiched and basted.  I pin basted first, as that was the easiest way to get it done by myself.

Then I went back and thread basted it, removing the pins once I was finished.

I also completed the cross stitching on five quilt blocks from a piece I started last week.

That's all for now.  I'm going to keep resting up and hopefully be back in the game tomorrow or the next day.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Tempie's Rose Garden Runner

I finished the top of my table runner! 

The first chunk that was finished up were the bunny blocks.  I think the embroidery really gives them life.

Then I made all my sashing pieces and put together everything but the long horizontal strips.

Next I made some special corner blocks to help make the whole thing "pop" more.
The above picture really doesn't do the pinwheel block justice, but it was the better one.  The picture quality wasn't the only frustrating thing about the pinwheels.  The first set I made ended up being too small.  The center pinwheel needed to be 2 inches square to fit the white border.  So I remade the pinwheels and they fit.

But then my long sashing pieces were too long.... which I didn't discover until after I'd attached the pinwheels.  My fault for being excited and not checking before I got carried away.  Easily fixed though.

Also the bow tie and broken dish block sections were shorter than the rest of the runner.  Apparently the cutting instructions I used failed to include seam allowances in the finished block size.  So I shortened the other sections to fit.  It's not like this is going on a bed, where size would be an issue.

The batting is already cut to size.  I don't have a picture, but I'm using white flannel.  It won't be too bulky to set things on this way.  Now I just need to decide on the backing fabric and get it pieced.  I have some fabric in my stash that I've been planning to use for this, but the manager of the quilt shop showed me some adorable fabric that has white bunnies and purple flowers on it.  I might have to change gears and use my other fabric for the binding only.

So this coming week I'll be getting that figured out and figuring out how I'm going to quilt the applique blocks.  I do know that quilting each section will be it's own project.  I'm doing this by hand and it might take a while.

I also (in theory) have to start stitching on some fine linen this week.  It's (hopefully) going in the Judged Show in May.
I'm a little disappointed with the linen itself already.  Most of the over-dye effect that I loved it for washed out.  Normally I don't launder stitching fabrics before I stitch, but something in my gut told me too this time.  I'm glad I did or else the threads could've been stained.  Whatever they used for mordant on the over-dye didn't do well on the linen.  I may have to call in help from a friend who dyes and see about re-dying the piece.

That's it for this week.  Catch everyone next time!

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Table Runner Progress

I've been working on the table runner pieces all week long.  In fact, I'm cautiously optimistic about getting the quilting started sometime this coming week.

First of is the biggest challenge I had to getting any work done this week.  This is her preferred spot to sleep.

 Now for the revised runner design.  I finally figured out how I wanted the sashing to look.


And of course Artie got disgusted with me whilst I was working on the  revisions, so he pulled my coat off the chair and made a nest.
Then I made the bow tie and broken dishes blocks.  I cut more pieces than I need for the runner, but that's a different project done the line. 

When I started working on the bunny blocks, Pollux decided they needed to be snooper-vised.

He approves of the progress.
 He has been demanding more attention of late, which means I'm not surprised that I forgot to get pictures of the blocks when I finished the applique.

Next I fixed the center on the large rose.  If you recall, it was off center when I posted it's picture before.  Now it's fixed.
And the block has been embellished.
I started working the embroidered bits on the bunny blocks next, not realizing how late it was... almost midnight!  I was tired, so I parked the needle for the night.  I still need to finish the eyes, work the rest of the face, and add some fur details.  Long-time blog friends can probably guess who is sitting under the flowers.

 I'll be finishing the embroidery later today (I hope) and moving on to putting the whole top together later this week.  See you next time!

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Planning and Charting

I spent most of this week playing with a book I found at our library.  It's by Lesley Wilkins and called Blackwork Made Easy: Techniques, Patterns, and Samplers.  The illustrations are gorgeous and I've always had an intellectual affair with blackwork.. meaning I've thought about doing it, kitted up a couple of charts, but never did anything with it.

Now I've made a chart, which will probably get kitted up and set aside for when I decide I've finished enough UFO's (unfinished objects) and played with a couple of things I've already been promising myself I would do.  Like the previous blackwork chart I kitted up for myself.

I fell in love with the dragon design in the book and just had to sketch him out before I returned it.  Then he looked sort of sad and lonely on the page, so I gave him a friend.  Then I doodled with some border bits that I thought were interesting.  The next thing I knew, flowers had appeared and I decided he was in a garden.  So more flowers and creatures were added to make the picture filled out.

As I was working, it occurred to me that my best friend would really enjoy this piece, so I personalized it with her surname.

All of the motifs are from the book.  I really had fun playing with it.  I doodled out a few other things, but they haven't turned into anything fun like the dragon did.  I do believe I will be purchasing a copy of the book though.  There are so many gorgeous designs inside.

I've also been playing with designs for two charts that each feature a piece of my recent poetry.  Neither of them are finished though.   I keep changing too many things.

I also found the fabrics I'm going to use for the sashing on the appliqued table runner.

The purple was so seductive... I bought a full yard even though I only needed one third of a yard.

I wanted to get more done on the runner this week, but the sun was out on more days than not, so I wanted to be upstairs where I could see it.  And the stitching designs had my attention anyway.

Thanks for checking in this week.  See you next time!