Monday, October 28, 2013

A Spooky Halloween Blog Treat

Welcome, Blog Hoppers!

Today is my day to post some spooky Halloween offerings.  Thanks to Madame Samm from Sew We Quilt and Wendy of Why Not Kwilt for all their work in organizing this blog hop and keeping everybody in line.

I have for you two small wallhangings.  The patterns come from The Heart and Home Co.  I picked up kits for both the wallhangings when AQS was in Grand Rapids this year.  Unfortunately, I don't know who I purchased them from so I can't give credit to the shop who put together the kits.

First is Ghost.  My three-year-old grandson is being a ghost for Halloween.  My original intention was to make a trick-or-treat bag out of it for him to use but decided to do the wallhanging instead.

A funny story that I wish I had a picture to go grandson originally wanted to be a green ghost but in the last couple of weeks changed it to a purple ghost.  He went with me to purchase the fabric for his costume, and when I grabbed the white fabric, he told me, "No; purple."  So purple it was.  I ended up adding bits of cheesecloth over the purple floor-length costume.  As we went through the zoo-boo last night, he did in fact look very ghostly....just bits of white floating along.

The second wallhanging was made for my almost 17-month-old granddaughter.  The only kit that was available that wasn't scary was Candy Corn, so that's what I got for her.  It's quite colorful.  When she received it in the mail, she proceeded to carry it around the house with her.

The hangers for both of them were purchased from Ackfeld Manufacturing.  They have some wonderful hangers available, not just for the holidays but throughout the year.  They come in a variety of finishes and sizes.  One of my favorites that I plan to make a quilt to hang on can be found here.  Think I could get away with hanging it in my office at work?  

Thanks for stopping by, and be sure to visit and leave comments for the other blog hoppers today!

I Piece 2-Mary

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Wicked Blog Hop

The Wicked Blog Hop starts today and runs through October 31.  Check out the postings each day for some fun Halloween ideas.  I will be posting next Monday, October 28.  Thanks to Madame Samm and Wicked Wendy for sponsoring and cheerleading this blog hop!

Here is the schedule.....

Tuesday, October 22nd

Wednesday, October 23rd

Thursday, October 24th

Friday, October 25th

Monday, October 28th
I Piece 2-Mary
Tuesday, October 29th

Wednesday, October 30th

Thursday, October 31st

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

I feel like I should start this post with an explanation of why I have not posted in almost a year.  The fact is, I just don't have a good explanation.  Blogging did not make it to the top of my list of things to do.  And the longer I went without posting, the harder it was to jump back in.

In an effort to become the person I know I can be, I have made a new commitment to post to this blog on a regular basis.  My goal is for twice a week, even if it's something small.  My reasons for blogging are the same as a year ago.  I'm still not sure people will want to read what I write, but I'm doing it as much to have a record of my journey along the way as anything else.

With that said, on to the fun stuff!

When the AQS show came to Grand Rapids in August, I traveled across the state to take a class with someone whose work I've admired for a long time, Susan K. Cleveland.  Here is her website I have most, if not all, of her books.  Someone who can make prairie points interesting is definitely someone to be listened to!

The class I took was to make the pattern Octet, from her book Precision & Panache:  Fine Workmanship, Fabulous Details, Outstanding Quilts. This book has some, well, fine workmanship, fabulous details and outstanding quilts .... along with the instructions to incorporate them into your quilting.  Even if you don't make any of the projects included in the book, it has a lot to offer.

The pattern Octet features the aforementioned prairie points, but also incorporates the use of beads, using heavy threads for the top thread in your sewing machine, and piped binding.  Mine finished to 16" x 10".  Here is the finished project.

And here are a few close-ups, the first one showing the piped binding and the heavy thread used for quilting.  I used Aurifil 12wt for the top thread in my machine and just a regular cotton piecing weight for the bobbin.  You do have to use a larger needle and adjust your machine tension.

This close-up shows the prairie point with the bead attached.  I have used the Aurifil thread again to embellish the prairie point.  I was originally going to use a plain orange bead, but then I found these neat beads with flowers that really mimic the bubbles in the main fabric.  (I have become a fan of the bead sections in both Joanne Fabrics and Michael' to find a way to use all of them!)

I am quite pleased with the finished project and can see myself incorporating these techniques in future quilts!

Check back as I introduce you to some old friends.....sometimes called UFOs.  

'Til then, happy stitching!!