Archive for the ‘Sewing keeps me sane.’ Category

I wish I could say I never produce work that needs to be ripped out.  I can’t.  This past week my friend Hollie added a bead tail to the needles she uses when she is removing stitches and working too close to her machine needle for comfort.  After seeing a picture of them, I just had to make myself a couple of them.  The added bling makes keeping track of their whereabouts so much simpler.  Needles used to rip out seams are affectionately referred to as “froggin’ needles”…”rip-it, rip-it”.  🙂

frogging needles

Speaking of Hollie, I received the block she made in our quilt block sampler swap in the Art 4 Mail group.  The first block is a simple four-patch.  Her fabrics are gorgeous.  I’m a big fan of paisley from way back.  Our first theme color was blue with a complimentary fabric.

Blue Hollie

Tomorrow I will mail the ones I made out to the ladies in my group. Did I mention I am a big fan of paisley?  I guess I should have repressed my block before taking a picture.  It was already folded neatly in quarters, ready for the envelope.

Blue Judy

This is how I’ve spent all my sitting time this afternoon.  It look like I’ll be cutting tiny stitches for a while.  This was a collar I picked up at a thrift store for a dollar a while back.  It’s high time I remove the beautiful lace and start using it in CQ projects.  I’ll use the muslin, too…

2013-09-08 14.44.22

That’s a wrap for this time.

Until next time…

And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.  (1 John 2:1)


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This morning I let my German Shepherd puppy out of her kennel to spend quality time with me.  We do this several times a day in an effort to teach her how to behave in the house.  She’s full of energy and a real mischief maker.  Just like a wee child going through the terrible twos, Bella has to be watched every second she is freed from her kennel.

Bella looking apologetic…and for good reason.


Several days ago I set my Baby Lock Natalie on our dining room table so I could construct a few crazy quilt projects.  Even though I know better, when I finished sewing yesterday I left my little machine plugged in and sitting on the table.  The cord was draped several feet away from the table and was attached to an electrical surge protector strip.

Baby Lock

Sometimes when Bella is running free she turns our house into an obstacle course and literally runs laps around furniture and through the open spaces.  This morning she made several passes through our living room,  dining room and around the kitchen island.  I guess that route became mundane, because she added a pass between the dining room table where my Baby sat and the room divider between the dining room and living room.

To make an already long story shorter, I heard a heavy thud as my Baby Lock hit the floor.  My heart sank.  Bella ran for cover.  I went to assess the damage.  Would you believe my machine is not a bit compromised?  I am amazed whether you are or not.  The Natalie is a lightweight, portable.  I bought it so I did not have to drag my heavy Ellegante II with me when I want to take my machine away from home.   I was afraid I would find a broken machine.   I picked her up, brushed her off, reattached the arm cover thingy, rethreaded her and made a test seam.  She sews perfectly!  I use the Natalie almost exclusively for block constructing these days and was so thankful when she stitched a perfect seam.

When my machine hit the floor my heart sank…I bought Natalie when it was a discontinued model for $99.00.  That was at least two years ago, and knew she couldn’t be replaced through a dealer.  I figure it was the bottom of the line when she was sold.  It’s a no frills machine, but it sews a beautiful seam.  I tell you all this, because I would not hesitate to buy another Baby Lock if I were in the market for a new sewing machine or if Natalie had been broken in this accident.   I love my Baby Locks!

Over the past couple of weeks I received two swap hearts.  Today I am sharing pictures of both.

The first one I received is from Angie.  I love pink and the heart she made for me spoke to my love for delicate pink.  It is lovely.  One of the projects I am working on is a heart for a friend whose granddaughter passed away earlier this year.  Angie’s couched ribbon treatment was so sweet, I used her idea on the one I am making.


And two shots showing detail…I love the maiden hair fern seam treatment and the curved feather stitch motif.

Angie 1

Feather stitch is one of my favorite.  Angie used it creatively in different ways.  The lace she chose is double sweet…and I really like the way she couched the satin ribbon.

Angie 2

The second heart I received is from my friend Stephanie.  Stephanie’s work equals any I have seen…bar none.  She is a great source of inspiration and pushes me to do better than I think I can.  I love the colors and the beautiful silkie anchor piece.  The little girl reminds me of someone I used to be…Stephanie’s heart touched my inner child.


And a couple of close shots…I really can’t pick an element I like the best.  The little feather stitch and colonial knot seam treatment is precious…the button cluster is supreme.  Her silk ribbon rose is so sweet I can almost smell it.

Steph 2

I love the dragonfly and necklace…such pretty pearl beads.  Her wheels and colonial knots are perfect.

Steph 3

That concludes my heartfelt show and tell…

If you have not taken the opportunity to put your name in the hat for a chance to win a set of Robbie Field’s Creative Stitchery Success Strips, please feel free to do so.   If you have a set already and love them, why not tell your stitching friends about the giveaway so they can learn about them, too.  If you would like to have a set but don’t want to wait…you can order from Robbie by visiting her page Creative Stitchery Success Strips.  Robbie has quick service.  Disclaimer…I am in no way connected to or profit by the sale of Creative Stitchery Success Strips.  I just really like mine and think every free-form stitcher should have a set!

Until next time…

For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich.  2 Corinthians 8:9)

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A week ago today I ran into a floor fan and took a flying dive over it.   Two days later I went to the doctor per my husband’s demand and was deemed unbroken.  While there I had my doctor listen to my lungs.  He confirmed my diagnosis.  I had/have bronchitis.  His recommendation was to take it easy for at least a week.  As a result I’ve had time to finish working on my red block. 

Here are the results…click images for larger view.

Full block…I cut the top off just a wee bit.

Blue Bird – not a bluebird…

Two crazy friends helped tweak my bird.  One thought he needed a worm in his mouth and one more claw…so I gave him one a juicy worm and another claw.  The other thought his legs were too thick.  She was right, so I painstakingly picked out the thread and restitched thinner legs.

Butterfly, button cluster and  flower motif seam treatment…

Tree with an owl and a pussy cat…

Feather stitch and bullion stitch buds…

That’s it for the changes in my red block.  If you have not entered my coconut oil giveaway, take a minute and check it out. It’s for an amazing gallon of premium coconut oil. You really don’t want to miss the chance to win this wonderful gift. You can find it here…A Gallon Of Tropical Traditions Virgin Coconut Oil Giveaway…O Yeah!

Until next time…

Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
Matthew 5:16

Until next time…

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My work on Sheila’s block in the Anything Goes #5 Round Robin for Novices is complete. Her block completes my participation. It’s been fun, and I’ve already signed up for another one.  In the meantime, I’ll have plenty of time to work on blocks just for me.  🙂

Here is the work I did on Sheila’s block…click on images for enlarged view

Everyone who stitched before me chose something to do with hats…I figured every pretty hat needed nice shoes to go with it so I chose old-timey, high-top shoes.

A Venice lace motif…

Seam treatment

Overall block…

That’s it for this time…f you have not entered my latest coconut oil giveaway, be sure to check it out. It’s for an amazing gallon of premium coconut oil. You really don’t want to miss the chance to win this wonderful gift. You can find it here…A Gallon Of Tropical Traditions Virgin Coconut Oil Giveaway…O Yeah!

Until next time…

Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.  Hebrews 10:25

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On the first day of May I received Susan’s beautiful, round robin crazy quilt block to add my stitching to.  I love the rich colors of the fabrics Susan used in the construction of her block.  It was a pleasure to work on.  The picture below shows the work I did.  (Calling something so pleasurable “work” seems just wrong…but I guess “it is what it is”.)

Hollie’s stitching was added before my turn. Look at the sweet bird and bird’s nest she embroidered.  The row of tiny catepillars represent those that eat her dill before turning into butterflies each year.  In my book both are very special.  I can hardly wait to see what Hollie stitches on my block…but wait I will have to, because she is last to stitch on it before it is returned to me.

Speaking of Hollie, a couple of days ago she asked me about the red block I posted a naked picture of a few posts back. As most of my own stitching does when I receive someone else’s to work on, it went on the back burner. After I completed the embellishing I did on Susan’s block, I started embellishing my red block. The main color I’ve chosen for embellishing is gold.  The red crocheted rose (Irish rose, I believe) in the center was sent to me by Pat when she downsized her stash last year.  It seems perfectly at home on this block.  To this point some blue and gold thread has been used and a bit of green beading.  As you can see, there is much  embellishing to come, because  I’ve only just begun.  Here is the progress I’ve made so far…

I’ve got one final picture to share today. One of the crazy quilting groups I belong to have a secret sister swap in progress. It’s one I am taking part in. This morning I received a squishy package from my secret sister. Look at all the wonderful eye candy she sent to me to play with. There is a small pair of golden-colored dragonfly wings in these goodies that I was especially happy to find in this secret sister stash. I saw some worked into a block of a friend and have been looking for them locally ever since…to no avail. I hope the lady who receives my package will be as pleased with hers as I am with mine. Such fun!

One last thing before I go…you have today and tomorrow to throw your name into the Tropical Traditions Coconut Oil Giveaway. You could win a quart of this wonderful product. It’s such good stuff…don’t miss out.

Until next time…

Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come. . . . Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh. Matthew 24:42,44

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Just a short post to share my newest naked block…

Earlier in the week I spent a couple of hours thrifting and found a lime green silk skirt.  It had “crazy quilt” written all over it.  I brought it home and cut it into pieces the same day.  This afternoon pieces of both the skirt and lining were sewn into my next block.  It’s a seven-inch block constructed of silk, cotton, the “wrong side” of a piece of brocade, and even a piece of polyester (one of my least favorite fabrics, but even it has a place in crazy quilting). As soon as I put the finishing touches on the purple block I was working on before the class I started five or so weeks ago, it is next in line for embellishing.

Putting this block together was less frustrating than any I’ve made so far.  Maybe that means I’m getting the hang of it.  Not feeling encumbered and overwhelmed while constructing a block definitely makes it more fun.  Ooorah.

Here is my naked, green block in all its glory.  I can hardly wait to start dolling it up.

Until next time…

But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ.  Galatians 1:11-12

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Since the second day of April I’ve had in my possession a Round Robin crazy quilt block belonging to Hollie.  A few moments ago I made my final embellishing stitches.  I hope Hollie will be pleased.  Here it is…

View 1:  This shot shows the upper portion of the work I did.  I believe the only changes I made since my last “Hollie block” post is the pink, beaded motif at the top.

View 2:  The lower portion of the work I did is shown in this shot.  The placement of the butterfly may be slightly different than it was in the previous “Hollie Block” post, and a small dragonfly charm has been added.

View 3:  Overall shot of the work I did.

Now to work on one for myself until the next RR block arrives!

Until next time…

Your outer life is your reputation with people, but your inner life is your reputation with God.  ~ unknown

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Earlier this month I received my first Round Robin crazy quilt block to work on.  This block was naked when I received it.  It belongs to Hollie, a very sweet, crazy lady who lives in Arkansas.  The colors and fabric Hollie chose for her block are among my favorites, though  you wouldn’t know it by looking at my Round Robin naked block.  After spending some time looking at the block and thinking of how to embellish it, I finally took the plunge and made my first stitch.  It’s funny, but that first stitch felt almost scary.  The block is not mine and is precious to someone else.  It was unembellished; crisp; unsullied.  I don’t want to be “the one” to mess it up.

Here’s Hollie’s lovely block…naked and untouched:

I’m not certain I am finished with my part, but for the moment I’m at a standstill and am waiting for inspiration before making more changes.  There’s no hurry, because  it can stay with me the remainder of April.  Hopefully I’ll get a bright idea for embellishing the empty spaces within the seams I stitched.

Here is the embellishing work I’ve done on Hollie’s block so far.  Please keep in mind I am still learning…learning is what this Round Robin is all about…the word “novice” is a comfortable umbrella to me at this point in my crazy quilting journey.

Overall block…overall views are so forgiving.  🙂

This view shows the petite roses and detached chain leaves made with silk ribbon adorning the feather stitch along the seam on the left side.  Seed beads have been added to the center of each rose. 

One of Hollie’s “likes” is mother of pearl buttons.  I just happened to have a few in my button stash.  Each button is embellished with pink, glass, seed beads.  Looking at the picture, I see a couple more of the tiny pink beads need to be added around the buttons.

The second seam is embellished with daisy trim.  Each daisy is embellished with a lavender seed bead…a color pulled from the ever-so-romantic, calico fabric.  Along the left side of the trim I’ve added a row of tiny “flowers” using a fern stitch and more lavender seed beads.

This shot shows the silk ribbon spider roses and pierced roses within the calico fabric to the right of the daisy trim.  Each rose has seed bead centers.  I’ve spotted a couple of roses that need an additional seed bead or two added.  They look just a little wonky.  

To the right of the roses is part of the seam embellished with two rows of the  Chevron stitch forming diamonds.  (They are a “girl’s best friend so such a romantic flavoured block needs diamonds.)  Along the left side of the Chevron stitch diamonds are “little flowers” made using the fern stitch and french knots.

The final shot shows the sweet, lace motif butterfly and concludes the work I’ve completed on Hollie’s beautiful block.  I hope (and pray) she likes it…it has been a pleasure to work on…and such a learning experience.  Before sending it on its way to the next stitcher in our group (Mikki from Iowa), I’ll take more pictures and post again. 

Until next time…

So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God.  Romans 14:12 

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The day I received the wonderful box of stash-building goodies from Lisa, I also became the new owner of a crazy quilt block made by her.  Between my amazement of the abundance of the crazy quilting pieces parts Lisa shared and the WordPress glitch that prevented updates, I completely forgot to share the beautiful block.  Here it is…a little late but not forgotten!

I love my Lisa block and thank her for it from the bottom of my heart!

While I’m feeling “crazy” I’ll share the quiltie I made for Barbara to show her she is loved and thought of during this time of healing and refurbishment as she recovers from surgery.  It is similar but not just like the quiltie I made for the Fruit of the Spirit swap at Art4Mail.  Barbara headed up the swap and chose the theme…Love seemed like the perfect get well card theme.  I hope she can feel the love.  🙂

side two…

In the very near future I will be reviewing a super special product…Tropical Traditions, Gold Label, Virgin Coconut Oil.  Coconut Oil has been used in my kitchen for a number of years for a variety of purposes.  This is a brand new to me.  Over the next week or so I will be using it and reporting my thoughts back here.  I’m looking forward to reviewing Tropical Traditions’ product.

 Check out this video to learn more…


Until the next time…

Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand.  Philippians 4:5

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If the package I received from my bloggy/Art4Mail friend Lisa was the cake…the Fruit Of The Spirit quiltie that arrived in the same mail run was the icing.   In a previous post I shared the naked blocks I made for my first-ever quiltie.  The 9-part theme “Fruit of the Spirit” was one I could not resist.  Yesterday the postman delivered the “love” quiltie made for me by Donna.  After opening the parcel I had no doubt Donna knows the true meaning of love.

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.  For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.  He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.  John 3:16-18

Here’s side one of the “Love” quiltie Donna made.

Side Two…

I love my quiltie…thank you for swapping, Donna.

Last night I put the finishing touches on the quiltie I made for this swap.  Sadly it does not go to Donna, because we had an uneven number of people sign up.  I love the one on one swaps best.

Here’s the one I made for my swap partner…

and the back…

I hope she likes hers as much as I like mine.  🙂

All the talk about cake and icing made me hungry for something sweet.  I opted for homemade peanut butter cookies.  I wish I could share them with you.  They are just the right…soft in the center and mmm mmm good to the last bite.

Until next time…

 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.  John 15:13

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