Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Swittens or Mittears? Which is it.

Over the last year I have bought several sweaters at various Goodwill and Salvation Army stores,  I never knew what I would do with them until this week.  I decided to make mittens out of them to use as containers for Christmas gifts for the office staff at school.  I think they turned out ok.  Now just to fill them with homemade cookies. These were really easy to make, I found several tutorials on the internet today, but really just did my own thing.  Have some more sweaters that I want to cut up and use a different pattern.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving

Hope everyone has a happy, healthy and love filled holiday.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Enjoying my break

I am so glad we are out of school this week.  It is a greatly anticipated vacation.  I really didn't have that much time off this summer, since I went to a new school, most of my summer was spent getting the media center ready for school to start.  Yesterday I took the day off and did absolutely nothing, other than a quick trip to the dentist to have an adjustment made to a crown.  Today I spent most of the day in the sewing room, each year my goal is to have all of my Christmas sewing done by Thanksgiving, I don't like to have to rush to get things complete.  I made two of the "10 minute table runners"  today one for my MIL and one for my SIL.  These were kits that I picked up at Little Quilts going out of business sale.  They turned out nice, will definitely make some more for other holidays.

 I spent quite a bit of time tracing off another table runner, this one from Pat Wys's book, Handmade Christmas Cheer.  There is no way this will be done before Christmas, just like to have some "Christmasy" handwork for the holidays.

Not a great picture, but this is what the table runner will look like when finished.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Don't understand!

 I tried my hand at organic dyeing again over the weekend, I think I need to do some more research on this.  I had a huge pot of bright red maple leaves that I had cooked off, put in a yard of wool, The wool I had was a beautiful shade of red, when I put it in the washing machine with detergent it came out a beautiful sage green.  Don't know what happened, will definitely try this again after reading some more.  I think it was chemicals in the detergent.
 I also got my Quilty box on Saturday. This is the  third one that I have received and think it is a really good deal.  This box has some layer cakes, a ruler, thread, and some Sulky paper solvent.  Can't wait to try some of these items.
Quilty Box

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Trying my hand at natural dyeing.

I have been dyeing wool for a couple of years now and decided to try doing it using natural ingredients.  Last weekend when DH was in the mountains he collected me a bag full of an assortment of maple leaves.  (that is love, when your DH picks up leaves for you).  I have been doing some reading online and have a few books about it.  It is  a lot more complicated that using chemicals.  There is no way that you could duplicated a color from a natural dye.  I put the leaves in a huge pot covered them with water, boiled them a couple of hours, then let them sit over night.  The next day I put in a yard of off-white wool, did lots of stirring the first few minutes, let it simmer for 45 minutes.  After letting it cool, it when in the wash then the dryer.  This is not at all the color I thought I would get but I love it. Can't wait to try something else.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Decorating, Me?

 I am not much for decorating, I never have been,   However, this fall I decided I needed to step it up and change things around in the house.  Nothing major just a few fall touches to start out with.  New candle holders from Michael's filled with beans from Kroger, pumpkin scented candles from Target, and a white ceramic pumpkin from Hobby Lobby.  If nothing else I shop around.  This is on the sideboard in the dining room.  Not much but it is a start.

I also finished this pillow, I think it is from a Primitive Gatherings book.  I did the front of it last year and had just never finished sewing it into a pillow.  This is going in our bedroom.  I don't know if I will get anything else done for fall at least I did a little.

Monday, October 19, 2015

Sewing at last

 On Saturday I was finally able to sit down at my sewing machine and do some sewing.  I pulled out a kit that I bought about 12 years ago, Magic Carpet Quilt.  The blocks are very simple, a large square with sashing and corner stones.  I have about 7 more blocks to make.  It will probably end up as a donation quilt.

I also put the binding on a "cowboy quilt".  This fabric came from a vacation in Golden, Colorado about 10 years ago.  I think it will be my new car quilt.  DH likes the car to be cold when we are traveling, I always keep a quilt in the car to  keep from freezing.

Saturday was a banner day in that I did some sewing and my October Quilty Box came.  This is only the second one that I have received, I signed up for a  three month subscription.  Don't know if I will renew, but so far I am pleased and it is nice getting a surprise in the mail once a month.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Coming up for air, finally!

When I made the decision to transfer to a new school in the spring (and I do mean a new school, it wasn't even finished yet) I had no idea of the amount of work it would entail.  I knew that I would be busy, but had no idea just how much work.  I love being in a  new school, setting up a new media center, helping set policies for the new school, but I come home exhausted every  day.  Sewing has almost become a thing of the past.  I would love to come home one day and just sit down at my sewing machine and sew away.  I have been doing some handwork and reading about sewing.  I discovered a new book that I am in love with, Old Quilts New Life by Sarah Fielke.  There are 18 different quilts that have been reproduced once fairly closely to the original and once in a truly modern version.  This is one of the first "modern" quilt books that I really like.

I have managed to almost finish this wool table topper.  The only thing left to do is put the backing on and stitch around it. This is a pattern from  Primitive Gatherings and my hand dyed wool.

Love my pumpkins.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Want wool??

Check this out, a Woolie Bullie Box for only 50.00 an almost 75.00 worth of wool.  Each month over at on the 19th and 20th of the month you will have the opportunity to order a Woolie Bullie Box, Each month you will receive different goodies, this month, the first month I am letting you know what you will get:  Wool Applique Folk Art by Rebekah Smith, a Buttermilk Basin pattern and kit, a Woolie Bullie ( a charm pack of 8 different wools), a needle threader, plus a full 16 ounces of wool scraps.  This is a great buy, Quantities are limited.

Monday, August 3, 2015

Recognize these?

 If you have ever participated in a BOM from Homestead Hearth I am sure you recognize these little beige and red plaid bags.  For a while there I was getting several of these each month, it was more like a BOW.  I still have several of these that I haven't completed.  After finally finishing my string pieced blocks I decided to find something completely different to work on.

I pulled out a box labeled Halloween 1904, I found a receipt in one of the bags dated from 2010.  I think it is time that I finished this one, it probably won't be finished for Halloween at least not this year, but I will have a head start on next year.  I had to search through all of my boxes to make sure that I had all of the BOM bags.  I finally found all of them and have started the first two blocks.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Out of my box

I saw this quilt pattern in a magazine about three years ago and for some reason it talked to me!  I was surprised because  most of the quilts that I am attracted to are much more traditional.  This quilt is also paper pieced which I have done before but not to this extent.  There are nine blocks and I can't even get them laid out in my sewing room until I move some things around.  The blocks are huge, about 30 inches square.  I started this quilt shortly after finding the pattern, three years ago, today I finished the last block, now to get the rest of the paper off of the back and get the blocks sewn together.  I have three of the  blocks together, I couldn't wait wanted to see how they were going to look.  

Monday, July 20, 2015

A finish, finally

 This is definitely outside of my box.  It is a baby quilt for a fellow teacher, in grey, orange, and lime green, it is  a Moda Bakeshop pattern.  It turned out ok.  The background is grey with foxes on it, another nursery item.  Can't believe that I was able to find grey fabric with foxes.  The last item was a label.  I always put a label on my quilts, this one was an iron on one.  Hope that Sophie and her dads like it!!!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Summer time busy

 This summer has been extremely busy with work and gardening.  Our garden has produced a lot of green beans, I have canned over 40 quarts of green beans and put some in the freezer.  It saves money in the long run, but it is lots of work.
 Also lots of cucumbers, I have made bread and butter pickles, sweet pickles and spicy sweet pickles.  I have never known  any one else who made these,  I got the recipe from my former sister in law, they are really good.  I know it sounds strange but Cinnamon spicy pickles are pretty good.  
I have also anxiously been waiting for the delivery of  my book, Go Set a Watchman.  To Kill a Mockingbird is my favorite all time book and I have been anxious to read the "prequel" to it.  It just came, can't wait to get started on it.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Working on Wool

 Just finished Garden Row by Ties that Bind, love the way that the flowers go in either direction.  Great table runner.
 This one is prepped and ready to go.  The pattern shows the crocks in brown, I decided to do mine in different shades of blue.  Can't wait to get started on the hand work on this one.

If you need to add to your wool stash check out my store at PiginaBlanketwools for a full 32 ounces of wool scraps at only 14.95.  This is a great buy, the colors and textures will vary, but you will get a great selection and some fairly large pieces.  

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Winter Wonderland + freebie

 Just picked up Winter Wonderland today from Leisa, she did an outstanding job as usual.  Have to get the binding on it this weekend.  Love it.  I have so enjoyed reading all of the comments that were left on my Pig in a Blanket Blog for  my give away.  I love to know what other people enjoy doing in their spare time.

If you go over to Pig in a Blanket and place an of at least 25.00 you will receive a free Patriotic Woolie Bullie,  2 reds, 2 blues, 2 golds, and 2 whites.   Great way to add to your stash.  Each piece is a 5 inch square.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Great Giveaway

I am so excited to be a small part of Handmade Christmas Cheer by Pat Wys.  When Pat started writing this book, she knew that she wanted to include several wool projects and wanted me to supply the wool!!!  I couldn't believe it.  What an opportunity, I was soooooo excited.  I was even more excited  a few weeks ago to see a copy of the book.  Every project in the book is absolutely over the top.  If you are going to purchase a new Christmas book this year, this is definitely the one to buy.  I received a copy of the book from Pat's publisher, Martingale, to use in a giveaway.  So here goes.  To win a copy of Handmade Christmas Cheer and a bundle of 4 fat quarters, one each in red, green, blue and white.  Perfect for any Christmas project.  For an opportunity to win, go over to Pig in a Blanket Wools  and leave a comment about your favorite type of handwork, wool applique, applique, stitchery or something else. The winner will be announced on Sunday.  Good luck.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Love my new bag

Just finished my new bag, the pattern is Victoria by Sue Spargo.  I bought the pattern several years ago with intentions to  make it and just never did.  When I started dyeing wool I knew that I would one day get around to making it.  The wool section is all my hand dyed wools, the green corduroy is from a pair of my dad's pants, along with the brown corduroy.  The buttons are from  my mom's button box, I have no idea how old some of them are.  The green and bronze upholstery came from old pillows from the house where I grew up.  This is going to be my new knitting bag.  Can't wait to show my mom.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Busy day at the dye pot

 Monday was spent at the dye pot, first time since school has been out.  I love to dye when I have all day and don't have to worry about time r estraints.  I came up with a great new red, and a new gold I am calling Sunflower.  My new green is called Jade.  It didn't turn out quite the way that I wanted, I was aiming for a darker green but it is a pretty shade.

Blue, gold, red.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Great retreat

Austin Blue Bird, BJ's version
 Last weekend I went to the Charlie Elliot Center for a great sewing retreat put on by Leisa and Nancy.  They did a great job, can't say enough about how nice it was.  It was great to see everyone, since I am still working and most of my sewing buddies are retired it was great to spend the weekend with all of them.  Even more it was great to be inspired by all of their great projects.
Over the River by Teresa

Disappearing Pinwheel by Julie, love this one, might have to try it.

18 years and counting

 Eighteen years ago yesterday, DH and I were married in Las Vegas, seems like yesterday.  It has been the best 18 years ever looking forward to many, many more.  While dyeing wool yesterday, DH came home with these beautiful flowers.  I only get flowers twice a year, my birthday and our anniversary.  Love them.  We went out to a nice dinner at our favoirte Italian restaurant, Alfredo's.  If you live in  Atlanta, give it a try; it doesn't look like much on the outside but it is great.
DH asked what I wanted for our anniversary, we just happened to be at Costco at the time  and I said that I would like the Outlander book, which I have never read, much to my surprise I got the whole series, can't wait to get started.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Schools out

School's out for the summer!!! Short as it is.  Got the summer off to a great start my DH's family reunion in Virginia.  This was the view from our lunch on Sunday.  Love the mountains.  The last couple of days have been spent cleaning my sewing room, I don't know how I let it get so messy.  I am really going to try to keep it in order after this deep cleaning.  Hopefully I will be able to do it.

 The last few months at school were so incredibly busy I did very little hand work of any kind.  Several months ago I started Pine Tree Ridge by Jan Patek, I had put it aside until this week.  I finished the angel block tonight.  Can't wait to get more of the blocks done.

I also discovered a great book a few weeks ago on facebook.  It took me a while to locate a copy of it, and just got it in the mail a couple of days ago.  The title is Desert Trader, The Life and Quilts of Goldie Tracy Richmond.  I have just started reading it and it very interesting.

One of Goldie's quilts.