Friday, September 29, 2017

Rainbows and Unicorns

 Time flies! Here we are at the end of the week and at the end of September, already. Wow.  Somehow, I lost track of time and the rhythm of blogging without meaning to. Let's jump back in and share my latest happy little project!

During a visit with family a few weeks back, one of my young nieces took notice of the handmade bags I had with me, with this one in particular catching her eye. She told me how much she liked all the colours I had used and that she would really like to have it, so I offered to make her a pencil case of her own using the same pattern as mine.

The pattern for this colourful case can be found in the book, Sew Gifts and is the design of Adrienne Smitke. 
 I decided to make her version in a rainbow of pretty fabrics and to play up the variance in the tips of the improv pieced pencils. Then I tweaked the original pattern by enlarging the strip of fabric above the pencils in order to give her extra room for storage and to allow me the opportunity for some embellishing!

Fussy cuts from a text fabric were the basis for making several "tags" to decorate the front, back and even a piece of plain twill tape (that I inserted into a side seam).

This niece likes a bit of "bling" so a sparkly charm added to the zipper pull should satisfy that desire!

 A dark text fabric seemed the perfect choice for the lining of the pencil case as it shouldn't show any stray pen marks so easily.

The back of the pencil case should also delight my niece as I was able to fussy cut a unicorn out of scraps left from sewing myself a fitted blouse this summer. Who can resist unicorns from the talented designer Heather Ross? Well, apparently neither I nor my niece can. The sweet little poppet tried mightily to convince me that my blouse would fit her (she's just 7) and that she should have it. Can't blame a girl for trying! 😃

Linking up my happy little finish with Amanda Jean and friends, at Crazy Mom Quilts, for Finish it up Friday!

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Colours of Summer

Have you heard? Rachel at Stitched in Color is hosting another of her fabulous fabric mosaic contests, called Summer Crush.   You can make up to two mosaics (enter by Aug. 20th)!  Then on Monday the 21st, voting will open.  The two top Mosaics will earn a complete fat quarter set of their mosaic fabrics from the sponsor of the contest, Quilt Sandwich Fabrics !!!  Winners announced August 24th. 
Summer can be such a busy season and it seems to pass in the blink of an eye... or maybe that's just me getting older! ;o)  This summer has been a rich one - I've been gardening, canning, taking in favourite outdoor summer activities, travelling, exploring, spending time with family and squeezing in some sewing time (mostly garment making - which has been so lovely to return to!).  It has been wonderful! One activity I enjoy year round is fabric play, so it only made sense to take a favourite past time and put together a mosaic for the Summer Crush fabric mosaic contest.

The bright, happy colours in my inspiration photo (above), represent my take on summer. Minty greens, lemonade yellows with a burst of berry pink. Fresh, bubbly, slightly tropical and full of summer vibes! Pour me a tall glass of summer, please. ;o)

Pink Lemonade with a Dash of Mint - my entry for the Summer Crush Mosaic Contest

So what are you waiting for? Let's make the summer fun last a bit longer by popping by Quilt Sandwich Fabrics, selecting fabrics that say summer and put together a mosaic to enter in the contest, Summer Crush at Stitched in Color!

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Sewcial Bee Sampler Week 25

This is the last block in the Sewcial Bee Sampler (a fun online sew along), hosted by Sharon Holland and Maureen Cracknell! The block for this week is Prairie Queen (for the free download to make this or the previous blocks, visit Maureen's or Sharon's blog).  
Block 25 is Prairie Queen, in the Sewcial Bee Sampler sew along

Woohoo! Super excited to finish the final block in the sew along and to have made each block using my scraps.  I have had great fun going through my scrap stash and playing with lots of bright, happy colours as well as a myriad of low volume fabrics for my backgrounds.  My plan is to continue to use low volume scraps to make the sashing for my blocks, which I know will take a bit more time and consideration than using a single fabric.  However, I wanted this quilt to come completely from my stash and I'm looking forward to seeing how I can mix more low volume fabrics into the finish. ;o)

Although all the blocks are now finished, the sew along is not over with just yet! Sharon and Maureen will continue to guide us through the completion of our quilts.  I'm looking forward to not only turning my blocks into a quilt, but also seeing all the other participants' quilts made from the SBS blocks. I really can't believe how quickly the weeks passed and how much I anticipated the release of each week's block!  What a wonderful sew along that I am happy to have joined!

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Sewcial Bee Sampler Week 24

This is the second to the last block in the Sewcial Bee Sampler (a fun online sew along), hosted by Sharon Holland and Maureen Cracknell! The block for this week is Crosses and Losses (for the free download to make this or the previous blocks, visit Maureen's or Sharon's blog).  
Block 24 of 25 is Crosses and Losses
Only one more block left in the sew along!  The weeks have passed more quickly, I think, with a new block to look forward to and I can hardly believe that we are nearing the end.

Summer here has been one for the record books with it's string of hot, dry days. Ironic, after the record breaking flooding we had this Spring. Sadly, this also means that we are now dealing with wildfires across the province. I love the wild beauty of this province, and it's always sobering to realize the danger that exists when a combination of factors (such as extreme heat and a random spark - via Nature or mankind) come together. Thankfully, at this point,we only have poor air quality locally, which is due to the smoke from the various fires. However, it is a very real reminder of the wildfire experience we lived through in 2003, when we were among those evacuated from our (then) home. We were among the lucky to have a home to return to, while homes within a kilometre of ours were destroyed.  I feel for all those with homes, businesses and lives being changed by the wildfires happening now.  There is a very surreal quality to such an experience. Sometimes it is easy to forget how quickly life can change and that we are not in control of all aspects of life.  I am hoping that the weather will bring rain (no lightning!!) and for the winds to die down so that these fires can be contained and no further losses are incurred.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Sewcial Bee Sampler Week 23

Counting down the last three blocks in The Sewcial Bee Sampler (a fun online sew along), hosted by Sharon Holland and Maureen Cracknell! The block for this week is Friendship Star.  (for the free download to make this or the previous blocks, visit Maureen's or Sharon's blog). 
Summer is in full swing here - our temperatures have been over thirty degrees Celsius with the promise of reaching +40 Celsius by the end of this week!  Looks like the weather has affected my colour selection for this week's block. ;o)
Block 23 of 25 in the Sewcial Bee Sampler sew along

This week's block was one of the simpler ones to make and for my version I decided to reverse placement of background (in my case, the low volume fabrics) and the main colour. This allowed for some fun fussy cutting of a wee owl for the center of my block, as a focal point in the design.  It was a complete accident that my owl looks like he has a tuft of feathers on his head, thanks to the print used above him, but I love the results! Since this block finishes so small, I decided that I would select low volume fabrics that contain lots of  yellow to use for the borders, in hopes to keep this simple block from looking undersized next to the others in this sampler.

If you've been following me along this sampler making journey, you know that this is my second yellow block in my rainbow, scrappy version!  Any guesses for the colour(s) for next week's block?

I can't sing the praises of this sew along enough! Please visit Maureen's blog and Sharon's blog  for all the details in joining this fun,  sew-at-your-own-pace, virtual sew along! It doesn't matter if you're new to quilting or if you're experienced - this sew along is geared to be fun and manageable for all skill levels. The best part is the community of support you will be a part of! It's unbelievable - truly makes it so enjoyable! If you're on Instagram, you can find all the inspiring blocks that are being made shared under the tag #sewcialbeesampler - although I will warn you, it will be difficult to resist joining in, once you see so many beautiful versions.
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