Pieced Pastimes: 2009

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Quick Update!

It has been so long since I have updated this blog. I have not had time to read any of the blogs that I so enjoy. I have been very busy working. Once the snow flies, I should have more free time available to update my blog, catch up on my reading and work on my many ongoing projects.


I can tell you one quick story about another reason for my unusually busy days. As I once posted about, I have a 2 year old maltese named 'Delila'. Quite out of the blue one day, I decided that 'Delila' needed a friend. I searched online for another small dog and ended up buying a 2 1/2 year old pomeranian named 'Sophie'.

She is the nicest dog you could ask for - just as sweet as can be. She was a breeder for the woman that I bought her from and had already had 4 litters. I decided that 'Sophie' had been through enough and so I made an appointment with my vet to have her spade. I dropped her off in the morning and planned on picking her up in the afternoon. I received a call from my vet later that day to inform me that 'Sophie' was PREGNANT and was due to deliver anytime within the next 2 weeks! I took her home and 2 days later, she delivered a male puppy.


After a long deliberation (about 6 weeks worth) with the rest of the family , we have finally named him 'Charlie Boy'. He is now 8 weeks old and just as cute as could be.



He is full of the devil and just so darned fun. 'Sophie' is the adult out of the 3 of them and is very reserved and well-mannered. 'Delila' and 'Charlie Boy' on the other hand spend their days chasing each other, playing tug-of-war with their toys and generally raising hell every chance they get. We are still adjusting to going from one dog to suddenly three, but it is getting easier every day and I wouldn't change a thing!

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Saturday, June 27, 2009

A Couple of Pincushions

Don't you love pincushions! I know that I just can't make enough of them.

This first one is called 'Sweetheart Pincushion' and is from the book 'Ella's Home Place by Blackbird Designs'. I love this book and there's at least 2 or 3 more projects that I have on my 'To Do' list.

This second pincushion is called 'Lily's Pinkeep' and is from the book 'In Full Bloom by Blackbird Designs' (again). The original pattern used ric rac for the flower stem and some outlining, but I didn't have any - so in keeping with the 'makedo' theme, I used wool instead. Print Friendly and PDF

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Basket of Flowers Wallhanging

I am guilty of not posting for some time. This time of year is very busy for us. The school year is coming to an end and the garden has to be planted, etc...,. I finally got around to finish piecing this wallhanging. It is a group project from a yahoo group I belong to. The center applique is 20" square and is called "Basket of Flowers'. It was designed by Rebecca Hoffman. I added the flying geese borders.

I participated in the 'Springtime Shop Around' and was the lucky winner of the above prize from the 'Quilted Acorn'! The lovely sewing machine caddy was chock full of all kinds of yummy quilting items. The shop hop itself was fun (even without winning the prize) as it gave me an excuse to check out some new shops that I had been wanting to go to. Be sure to give your local shop hops a spin. Print Friendly and PDF

Monday, May 4, 2009

Golden Pear Pincushion

I have been doing a lot of prep work on some miscellaneous projects and will post photos once there is something worthwhile to look at. I decided to take a short break from all the tedious work and made this pincushion.


It is called 'Golden Pear Pincushion' and is from the book 'Simply Vintage by Blackbird Designs'. I enlarged the pattern (my version is about 7" tall). I also weighted the bottom to keep it from tipping over and I used some yummy hand dyed wool that I bought from the 'Little Lamb Quilt Shop'.


This Pear Makedo Pincushion is a store bought version that I have. I keep it on my desk and it comes in quite handy.

This last photo is my version of 'rag balls'. If you are looking for a quick project, these work up really fast. I cut up some strips of fabric, tied them into longer pieces and simply wrapped them around styrofoam balls. Until next time. Print Friendly and PDF

Monday, April 20, 2009

A Tisket A Tasket Blocks 3 & 4

I was able to sneak in some play time and get these next 2 blocks done.

Block 3 Done! Instead of using ribbon, I made an applique ribbon on the bunny. That bunny tail is one tiny little tail, but it really does make the bunny!

Block 4 Done! I turned the bunny's ears down, as I liked them better this way and opted to go without the ribbon on the chick.


And the 4 blocks that I have done so far. I still need to change the first block (replace the large center berry with 3 smaller ones). I was looking over all the different versions of these blocks on the Flicker Group and they are all wonderful! Can't wait to see what Anne comes up with next! Print Friendly and PDF

Monday, April 6, 2009

Delila's New Haircut




Delila had long hair for the winter, but was due for a good cut. Of course, now she has to wear a coat every time we bring her outside! Print Friendly and PDF

Monday, March 30, 2009

Trio of Saltbox Stars

Life has kept me busy lately and I haven't had a chance to update this blog. I love having small hand projects to work on for those occasional quiet moments. These are some cute wool pillows that I have been wanting to make and I finally made the time. The pattern is called 'Trio of Saltbox Stars' and is from 'Buttermilk Basin'. Print Friendly and PDF

Monday, March 2, 2009

Red Delicous Blocks 3 and 4

The block below is the 3rd block called 'Love Apple' from Esther's Red Delicious BOM.


And the 4th block called 'Peony Bloom' is below.

And below are the 4 blocks that I have done so far.

Esther should be coming out with her next block around the 15th of the month. It feels so good to be ahead of the game for a change. Print Friendly and PDF

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Red Delicious Block 2 Done & Block 1-Take 2

Esther's quilt design has given me a challenge to think outside the box. I auditioned so many color combination's for this quilt. In the end, I decided to go ahead and mimic Esther's choice of luscious 'reds', but to compliment it with some additional colors.
That being said, I ended up redoing block 1 because the lighter background was not playing nicely with my background choice for block 2 - and I really like the darker background anyway.

Now, I feel like I have a plan and I'm ready to take on the remaining blocks. Print Friendly and PDF

Sunday, February 22, 2009

A Tisket A Tasket Block 2 Done

This months design by Anne at Bunny Hill Designs is just the sweetest! I have been admiring everyone blocks and thought it was about time that I finish my own - so here it is!

And the next shot is the first two blocks together. I need to remove the large berry on the snowman block and replace it with a cluster of a three smaller berries, as the scale looks out of proportion to the February block.

Can't wait to see what she comes up with next month. Print Friendly and PDF

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Inspiration from a Favorite Thing

About ten years ago, I was perusing the local antique shop and spotted this beauty. I scooped it up and ran to the register with it, my heart racing with anticipation. I love it just as much now as I did in that moment. I keep it draped off the end of a cabinet in my family room and it makes me smile every time I walk into the room.

It's not in perfect condition and I think that's one of the reasons I like it so much. I often wonder about who made it, when and why. Someone put lots of time and effort into each loving stitch. It has a variety of embroidered symbols (each one representing a different meaning) including a double and triple ring - so perhaps, it was made to commemorate a special wedding anniversary.

Around the time I purchased the crazy quilt, I was really into Victorian decorating. The lovely stitches on the quilt inspired me to try my hand at silk ribbon embroidery. I ended up creating this cute little guy.

I keep him in a cabinet full of some of my other 'Favorite Things'. I used fabric remnants and lace trims from things I had sewn for my children. He reminds me of my grandmother, who collected elephants - although, hers all had their trunks up in the air which she said was a sign of good luck. Perhaps, someday someone will scoop him up and wonder about the history of him as well. Print Friendly and PDF

Monday, January 26, 2009

Red Delicious Block One

I told myself that I would finish this block today, no matter what. As I posted earlier, I was struggling with the birds tail feathers and tried several different looks. As you can see, I ended up adding an additional feather at the end of the bird and overall have learned to like it that way. I have a bad habit of 'overthinking' about things and I believe this was why I was having such a difficult time with this block. Print Friendly and PDF

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day

I read about this book 'Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day' on several blogs and was intrigued enough to order it. There is nothing like homemade bread and I have tried different recipes over the years. I made a batch of the 'Master Recipe' yesterday. To be honest, I had my doubts when I made up the batch of dough, as it just seemed too easy! There is no kneading involved - simply a quick stirring of the ingredients which creates a very moist dough. You make a batch of dough, refrigerate it (the dough will keep for 7-14 days depending on the recipe), and pull off a piece of the dough each time you want to make a loaf of bread.This morning, I baked 2 'boule's and 2 'baguette's'.

As you can see in the photo, I am missing a 'baguette'. My husband, my son and myself had to 'try it' and be sure that it was ok - it was more than ok - it was downright delicious!!! It had a nice crunchy crust on the outside and the inside was moist and full of flavor.

As quickly as I could, I stirred up another batch of dough. This time a different recipe from the book - for 'Vermont Cheddar Bread'. I have a feeling that I am going to get a lot of use out of this cookbook. Print Friendly and PDF

Monday, January 12, 2009

A Tisket A Tasket Block 1 Done

I finally got this block done. I would have liked to have done the snowman with wool, but I didn't have any white and the cream just didn't look right.


I decided to not use the buttons (even though they look so cute on Anne's block). I am thinking that I will have an easier time to quilt this later if the buttons aren't there. This was a fun block to do - it works up really fast!

Now, to finish up the first block of 'Red Delicious'. I am struggling with the birds tails - I am not liking the embroidered look, so will try something else. Print Friendly and PDF

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

A Tisket A Tasket BOM

Just what I needed - another project! I was reading Anne of Cottons'n Wool blog and saw this Free mystery BOM that Anne at Bunny Hill Designs has started and I just can't resist.

Isn't this the sweetest block!! I can't wait to see the rest of the blocks and get started on this project!
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Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year and Second Wholecloth Quilt

I started this quilt in April of 2004 with high hopes of finishing it that year, but life took over and it was not completed until February of 2005.

This is the quilt center . It is my own design with inspiration from an antique ceiling medallion.


This is a closeup detail shot - the micro quilting took quite a while and when I started seeing double, I knew it was time to take a break!

This is the quilting start date - the picture is not so great, but I really liked how the birds looked holding up the sign.And this is an overall shot of the quilt. I named it 'Time Goes By' and it won a teachers award at MQX 2005 by Tracey Browning and Second Place in the 'Traditional Whole Cloth' category at the Machine Quilters Showcase 2005.

I really love the simple but elegant look of the traditional wholecloth quilts. With the start of a New Year, I am thinking that I should start a tradition of quilting at least one new wholecloth a year. Print Friendly and PDF
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