Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Flower Power

Good morning!  How are things on your side of the screen?  I'm excited about my next project, this Flower Power tulip cushion from Love Patchwork and Quilting designed by Lindsay of Pen and Paper Patterns.  I love tulips blocks, there are so many ways to make them from applique to piecing and these chunky wide  tulips are great. I've seen so many great tulips lately, I wonder, are they suddenly more popular?

Flower Power
 
This pattern involves a row of paper pieced points, and that was a bit of a challenge to me.  I made a first pass and had complete failure, which you already know if you're following along on Instagram.  But I cut some bigger pieces and tried again with success, and in fact, the last two strips went really fast.  With more experience I would have had no trouble using the size pieces Lindsay has you cut and I appreciate the minimal waste they would provide. 
 
On a side note, the templates from the magazine are available on the website for easy printing! Genius idea. 
 
I can't wait to finish this up today.  I was just so thrilled with my little paper pieced wonders I had to share. I hope all is well with you friends. xo

Monday, July 24, 2017

Its summer.

Morning friends! Hope you're doing well. Summer is chugging along here in PamKittyVille and it's Capital H HOT!  Not a fan at all.  Luckily we live in a little valley and the fog from the coast creeps in between the hills and cools us off so most mornings are pretty nice.   Saturday morning I sat outside and read through Lori's new book Spelling Bee.  It's so, or make that sew CUTE.  What a clever idea, not only the alphabets and numbers, upper and lower case by the way, but also punctuation,  and fun new blocks, like the globe and telephone, new flowers a dog and butterfly.. just so many cute new things, and lots of cute ways to use them.  I'm not done  looking it over yet, but I got off to a good start.  Thanks so much Fat Quarter Shop for sending it to me.   Oh and also, lots of cute peeks into Lori's cute home, which I always love. 

Spelling Bee
 
Yesterday I finished sewing my rows together, finally.  I can't wait to show a better photo but it was just too darn hot yesterday.  I keep looking for pretty places to take pictures but right now every where you go it's brown and dry, not too picturesque.

Jelly Roll Rail Way
 
These Jelly Roll Railway blocks are so fun to make.  With all these prints and the floral fabric for the background it's a Pam Kitty Mishmash but that's my favorite.  So much color and pattern in one place.  I'm loving the hourglass blocks that are a bonus design element created by using 2 prints, in each block.   You just make sure that you have your block oriented  with alternating prints. You could totally go wild and use many prints but for me that adds a level of complexity to the block layout my attention span can't handle. It was a very fun sew and I enjoyed it a lot. Best of all was enjoying the memories of that fun first collection using some of those prints brought back. 
 
Can you believe we're at the end of July already? Where does the time go? Hope you're having fun! xop
 
 
 
 

Monday, July 10, 2017

Catch Up

HI there how are you?   Hot?  Because its HOT people.  Capital letter hot once it heads into the 100 plus degree zone.  I don't care what Michaels is trying to tell me with all the fall foliage and faux pumpkins, it's summer and it feels like it's never going to end.  (probably because it lasts well into what most people thing of fall) BUT I DIGRESS. 
 
Since we met here last I spent a fun day with Frankie over the 4 day 4th of July holiday weekend.  I got up early and beat the traffic on the pass over the mountains.  Nothing made me happier than seeing all the fog creeping  among the redwood trees and the serious drop in temps in Santa Cruz.  We had a great time, finally went to The Buttery and also Gayles Bakery both places totally charming.  I loved the  way Gayles was decorated, lots of pretty vintage tablecloth valences  like the ones that Elizabeth made.  And oh the vintage plates.. it was all so cute.  It was cool out.  Here's the beach near where Frankie lives, this was midday, but by late afternoon it filled up as the sun came out.  But not packed, just perfect.   
 
 
twinlakesbeach

I've also been doing some sewing.  Inspired by Fat Quarter Shop's Shortcut Quilt Jelly Roll Railway, I got busy cutting some strips.  It only took 24, and the hardest part is picking your fabrics.  While cruising around on Instagram I ran to Amanda's June Quilt Along quilt which is similar, different construction.  But her colors got me thinking.  Originally I'd been considering a red white and blue theme but then I got it in my head to actually use some of my very favorite floral for the background and these are the strips I cut to go with it.  I chose a bunch of my favorites from way back to my first line.  It just makes me happy looking at the prints and colors. 

Pam Kitty Strips

And that version of the Pam Kitty Focal Floral is my favorite.   It took some serious will power to cut into the last of it, and now there's just maybe 1 yard left.   But I am making myself use what I love, it's not doing me any good in a box, right?

Pam Kitty Blocks
 
I changed the design just a bit, adding alternating corners so that the intersections will be hour glass blocks.  You can see an example of how it will look here on Instagram. I think it's a fun change.  I'll start assembly today I think, I have to pay attention  to make sure I alternate them correctly.  You could easily add to the variety by using 22 inch strips and cut twice as many.  If I worked in a shop I'd want to make kits and have sew ins using this pattern.  You could round up a bunch of pretty fabrics. What  about scrappy backgrounds?  Also very fun.  I think I saw that in one of the quilts on Instagram.  You can check out the Jelly Roll Railroad hastag here, and the Crazy Mom June QAL hash tag here. Lots of pretty quilts to see.  I can't wait to get it all put together and see if I want borders or no borders.. I know I don't have enough of the floral, but I have other whites with prints that might work.  Who knows.  I just know that it's been fun to make and I highly recommend it. 

That's it for me today.  I hope all is well with you.  xo

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Aurifil DOM Reboot

Hi there friends and newcomers!  Welcome to June's Aurifil Designer of the Month reboot for June!  It's hard to believe that it was 5 years ago that we started the DOM project and I was excited to be a part of the fun.   Everyone's block was so clever, and mine felt a little less than that when I saw them all together.  Someone in the flickr group left a gentle criticism that it was not their favorite block.  So when it came time for the reboot I thought about what I could do to make it better without changing it. I looked at a lot of vintage stitch designs and I decided that since my favorite stitch was the lazy daisy, I would change all the stitches for the flowers to lazy daisies with French knot centers. 

Aurifil reboot June
 
I am still not a great embroiderer but it was a lot more fun.  I chose some fresh new colors that were more 'me' and I think the block is a lot cuter than it was before. 

aurifil DOM reboot June
 
Five years ago Pam Kitty Love debuted at Quilt Market, so I pulled out some of the PKL blacks and whites to use for sashing.  Very fun for me! You can read the original Auribuzz post about my block here!  I love seeing a picture of my cleaned up sewing room. You can read my post about it here.  Hop over to the current Auribuzz reboot post here!  I loved using the Aurifloss, and since finally someone showed me the secret to separating the threads my life is now complete! 
 
The colors I used are:
2888
2250
2530
1135
1148
2024
5006
2425
 
Thanks for stopping by!  Now skedaddle over to Auribuzz and get your chart and see all the posts about the DOM reboot!

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Smart Aleck

The other day I was thinking about how cute Roseann's book is and wanted to make the cute little mat but didn't have any wool.  I pulled out some fusible and some fabric and got busy making it using a square of fabric as a base.  I blanket stitched all the pieces using coordinating thread, and then layered it up and quilted it, I did a 3/4 inch grid on the black gingham and then just stitched in the ditch around the circle.


A Little Something
 
I popped some binding on it and once I stitched it down I was ready for coffee. 

A Little Something
 
Its' cute I think!  It would also make a cute potholder if you put some Insul Bright inside.  OR wouldn't' it make a cute quilt block? Well I won't get ahead of myself.
 
Hope you have a good day friends! 

Thursday, June 22, 2017

DO IT

I wouldn't be exaggerating if I said I was in a sewing slump.  Lots of ideas, just can't get around to doing it. Combine that with the decidedly dungeon like quality of light in my sewing room  and you have my own recipe for the doldrums.   
 
I am not immune to all the cute and inspiring projects out there, and I feel buoyed by looking at them.  Sometimes all you need is to start, so I did. I have seen so many cute little fabric boxes made using Ayda's book Made for Baby. Try over here at Krystine's blog and then here at Lauren's Blog.  Well you should go there anyway to be honest, the photos are wonderful. 


Made for Baby
 
Not as wonderfully photographed is my little box.  I am way too excited about it.  It was so easy, and it went together so fast.  I was happy for the opportunity to use the cute bias tape with crocheted edge that Roseann sent me as a surprise. Honestly I want to make a thousand and litter every surface with them. (hahahahaha like I have surfaces with room for them I crack myself up) 
 
I guess while I'm in the mood I should go try and accomplish something.  There's some binding half sewn on that I moved aside to sew this up.. that seems easy, right?
 
HAPPY DAYS FRIENDS! xoxo

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

#RIP Reliable

HI there!  What's new with you?  Those of you that follow me on Instagram know what's new with me... my beloved Reliable iron started smoking up a storm on Monday and now is a goner.  I'm pretty sure the  steam generator burned up for some reason, it was only on a few minutes, I was making some binding for a small quilt, and I was just giving it the finishing press in half when it started.  So much smoke!    Later I plugged it in and it didn't steam  and I didn't hear the generator working.  It did get hot but yikes, now it's too risky to use I think.

Reliable iron
 
I   feel like it was  the best iron I've used, the heat, the steam... the soleplate.. everything.   I babied it, never using tap water, always turning it off and unplugging.   Even after months went by. I  haven't sewn as much as normal the past 9 months to be honest. I'm torn about sending it back, do I want to invest (and it's a shipment to Canada so we're talking $40 - $50) in an iron that only lived 9 months?  That makes it a pretty expensive iron no matter how great it is.     It does have a nice warranty, you can see it here.
 
Regardless of what I decide, I needed a new iron.  I feel conflicted about investing in another premium iron and realize that I am lucky I have the means to do so.  Elizabeth had just replaced her iron, so she told me what she purchased and I went out and picked one up today. 
 
 
new iron
 
$40 and I'm back in business.  I haven't unboxed it yet, we're on a Flex Alert due to the heat, and aren't supposed to use unnecessary appliances till after 9pm. It's a California thing, like Spare the Air days!  I'll keep you posted. 
 
Ok time to turn off my computer!  I like to do my part.  Happy sewing!

Friday, June 16, 2017

The one where I still don't complain about the weather.

Morning friends!  How are you?  We're heading into the weekend and around here it's going to be a scorcher!  I've got my fans out  and my window monitoring schedule is in place so I'm ready.  I'm not going to complain YET, but I make no promises about the future!


WIP
 
Yesterday I was feeling really cheerful while doing some blanket stitching! This is a peek at a small part of my submission for volume 16 of the Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks magazine.  I really like this block and I'm crossing my fingers it is accepted.  I've been feeling very inspired to sew lately and I'm always happy when I'm blanket stitching!  It's probably my favorite thing.
 
Hope you're all doing well!  xo
 
 

Thursday, June 08, 2017

All Stars!

Hi there friends! What's new with you?  I've been doing a little of this and that, some sewing, some stitching with friends, some little bits of yardwork, the usual stuff for this time of year.
 
I was very lucky to receive an e-copy of  Lissa's new book from Martingale Lucky Charm Quilts.  The photos by Brent Kane  are courtesy of Martingale, you can see more quilts from the book on their website.



Lucky Charm Quilts
 
Like all books from Martingale they have clear and concise instructions with great illustrations, perfect for those who read every word and those who like to follow the photos!   I love the cheerful colors of the quilts, but if you like a country look there are projects for you too.  The book features lots of Moda designers we know and love, Bonnie Olaveson  who made Flying Geese.

Lucky Charm Quilts

This is Spring Mosaic by Sandy Gervais.  I love this cute small quilt on a chenille bedspread! 
Lucky Charm Quilts
 
I love this one by Laurie Simpson, Tea Time.  This is the quilt  I wanted to make right away when I flipped through the book.  Of course there are many other friends included featured, these were just three quilts that popped out when I looked.  Next time I'd pick three different, the projects are all so cute. 

Lucky Charm Quilts

I wasn't kidding, I did get busy and I started cutting and sewing right away.  I didn't have charms so I just pulled out my scrap bin and chose all the white background things available.  While I didn't have the variety I would have with a charm pack of fabrics, it still is cute.  I liked that the red was a single fabric aside from 3 charm squares, easy cutting! 
 

Tea Time Quilt
 
I think it does capture the same look even though I didn't have some cool linen to include, instead choosing a blue and red plaid. 

Tea Time Quilt
 
I would have had this quilted but shocker, I had no more small pieces of batting laying around, which means thank goodness I've used it all up! I'll head out for more this weekend.  This will be so easy to machine quilt, but if I was a hand quilter it would go fast as well, it's pretty small and the small squares will lend themselves to a diagonal grid with out marking. 
 
The book is full of projects for those charm packs but you can easily use yardage or fat quarters... it's all fabric! I really think you might enjoy it! If you pick it up let me know which quilt is your favorite!
 
Hope it's all good with you friends. Happy weekend!


Thursday, June 01, 2017

Hi there!

Morning friends, how are you?  Been busy?  I recently picked up one of the new Olfa Endurance refill blades for my cutter, and man does it make a difference!  I had seen it in the quilt market photographs and was excited to give it a try.  I thought I'd post about it so I can remember when I put it in and I can decide if it really does last a long time.  I'm notorious for not changing my blade, what about you?  I was curious about the cost and it turns out to be around a dollar more, so not a huge investment in a test run. 


Olfa Endurance Blade
 
I put it to good use on cutting some strips of fabric for a small project. More on that later.  It's a pattern that calls for a charm pack so just went thru my scrap bin and pulled a bunch of fabric that way.  Do you do this?  Or do you use a lot of precuts?  Just curious.


American Patchwork and Quilting
 
Did you see this cute quilt in the June American Patchwork and Quilting magazine? It's by Emily Herrick.  Super cute.  I was so motivated after seeing Sharon's cute baskets on Instagram, I ran right out to get the magazine. The blocks are large and my attention span is small, so I reduced the size 50% and I think it's adorable.  That doesn't stop me from loving the big baskets and Sharon's are so wonderful, be sure and check out her Instagram feed to see them all. (You'll need to scroll a bit.) 

Ok, that's what's up with me.  What about you? 

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Coffee Break Reading

The other day I was listening to the Fresh Air  while out on my errands and it was a great show with Pamela Paul of the NY Times talking about her book  My Life with Bob.  I really enjoyed the interview.  She spoke about being a life long reader, and there were so many things about her childhood reading that reminded me of my own experience.  I remember in seventh grade English we were tasked with listing each book we read on a 5 x 7 card, including a short review.  During that school year I read almost 400 books  and received a certificate, which was pretty cool in 1968.
 
I also loved the segment on book reviews and writing.  I've always love writing but am not very good at it, mostly just writing in the same manner   I speak.  Anyway, during the interview she shares a favorite  review  by Michael Lewis.  She remembers   the first sentence being something  like "he's written a good book, let's get that out of the way."
 
Which brings me to Blue and White by Minick and Simpson.  Let me get it out of the way, it's a great book, and I loved every page.
 

Blue and White

Blue and White is a  coffee table style book,  with wonderful photography by Brent Kane, published by Martingale. It's the perfect book to linger over, and to return to time and again.  It's divided into three sections, Americana, Coastal and Classic, and feature quilts and hooked rugs in a variety of settings through out the home.


Blue and White
 
I enjoyed the narrative that accompanies the pictures, insights into the creative process, and personal stories. 

Blue and White
 
And I'm not going to lie, I'm a complete fan-girl for the sisters, and I'm not afraid to admit it.  Meeting them at quilt market and having the opportunity to chit chat now and then has me barely able to control myself on most occasions, just hoping I won't say something stupid.
 
There are no instructions included for projects, but many of the quilts and rugs do have patterns and they're listed in the back for easy reference. You can find them on their website and you an follow along with their exploits on their blog.  
 
So to recap. LOVE THE BOOK. I highly recommend it!
 
Ok that's all for me today!

Monday, May 22, 2017

What's new?

Morning friends!  How was your weekend?  The weather has warmed up a lot here (no complaints yet.. but lets face it they're coming) and so it's perfect early morning porch weather.  Coffee and magazines or quilt books are a must. 

coffee
 
This past weekend was Quilt Market and I enjoyed watching the sights and scenes on Instagram and Facebook. Did you follow along? It's so exciting to see what's new and coming our way soon. 
 
I have had fun visiting with peeps lately.  My friend Joyce needed some fresh greens  the other day and I went thru my stash to send some her way.  She asked me over to show me the cute quilt she made for a baby shower and you can see it here. I also had lunch with Holly last week, it's been far too long since I'd seen her.   I've missed being out and about with people so it made for a fun week. 
 
Hope you have a good week friends! xo

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Good intentions

HI there!  How are you?  What's new on your side of the screen?  Same old thing around here.  Lots of sunshine this week, and I've spent time outside working on deadheading roses and trimming back things that need trimming.  My roses all bloomed out at once, in a beautiful showing.  The rain has been wonderful for them!
 
Last week did you see the really cute tea towel over at Boughs of Holly?  I saw it on Instagram and LOVED IT.  So totally had to have it.  We'll see if I make even one flower. 


Wishful thinking
 
Also saw these low volume prints on Sharon's Instagram and had to have them.  Since I began quilting background prints have been my favorite.  These will make a nice addition to my own fabrics.  I saw Amanda's Irish chain quilt and fell in love with it so I'm thinking about that. 

Low volume

And to really mix things up I saw something out and about that gave me some ideas, so I have something else that I want to do.  We'll see how it works out.

chalk board
 
I have good intentions to all of these things.  We'll see how it all works out.  Tell me what you're working on!  I'd love to hear.

Friday, May 05, 2017

TGIF

Hi there!  How did the week go for you?  Hot here, and I'm not complaining, YET, because today is a cool down.  I thought we had some rain coming too but looks like they took that off the schedule. 

Star of Hope
 
I haven't done much sewing lately.    I know my problem is fear of commitment. Every time I look online I see something I want to make but then before I can do anything there's something else.   So for now I just made a little star.  I was looking through my block book and found this pretty Star of Hope so yesterday I made it. Not perfect by any means, but I enjoyed making it.  It's a 4 in finish, and features my biggest challenge, making those inner triangles meet nicely. I made it from scraps on my cutting table.. tiny pieces  used up.  

A Little Something
 
Just in case you missed it on Instagram, I did finish my cute scissors fob from Monday! Super fun.  I'm not used to doing that type of sewing and it was fun, Roseann encouraged me to get busy and probably thought that was the last she'd see of it.   Thankfully her book A Little Something,  had everything I needed to know to complete it.  So cute.  I've got it tied onto my red scissors as you maybe saw on Instagram. 
 
Hope the weekend is fun!  Thanks for stopping by friends! xo


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