Friday, February 24, 2012

More quilt blocks

Swoon Block #2 is complete. Isn't she a beauty!:

Swoon block 2

Next I need to cut out the pieces for the remaining 7 blocks... hmm... let's just say there may be a delay as the cutting part is not my favourite!

I also joined the farmer's wife quilt along. These are my fabrics - The Secret Garden collection. Such pretty colours.

Joining the FWQA party!

I had read on a couple of blogs that it is easier to do paper piecing, and naturally 'easier' appealed to me. I'd hoped that the paper piecing templates would be included on the CD that comes with the book. But alas, no. The book comes with all the templates for the component parts of each block. However I had my mind set on the paper piecing approach. So I joined the farmer's wife Yahoo group, where some kind fellow had converted each square into a paper piecing pattern. Yay!

I attended a class at a local quilting store to learn this techinique. I really like this approach. FYI, here's the best online tutorial I could find. (PS - doesn't she have a gorgeous blog, with the most fabulous quilts... yes, yes she does!)

On an entirely unrelated note, Naomi turned 2 today. She had the most wonderful day!

2nd birthday!

Wishing you an equally wonderful weekend,
Sam xxx

Friday, February 17, 2012

Snuggly soft sweater

I recently finished this sweater for Naomi. I can't take all the credit for this beauty: my Mum started the sweater, and completed the body of it, when she was visiting over Thanksgiving. I just needed to finish the arms.

Look at my lovely new sweater

I didn't think I had enough of the lilac yarn to complete the arms and so I decided to stripe them with the pale pink. Turns out I probably would have had plenty in the lilac, but I really like the stripey arms. And because I was feeling all Valentinesy, I decided to overstitch a heart on the body of the sweater.

The best part of this jumper is how unbelieveably soft and light it is. It is knit is Misti Alpaca Chunky, instead of the Rowan Big Wool that the pattern calls for... pattern is Lucy from ROWAN Junior magazine. This yarn is deliciously soft. It makes me want to knit myself a big cuddly sweater too. :) Needless to say, that when Naomi puts this on, she doesn't want to take it off... must be like getting cuddled by a teddy bear all day! Ha ha!

Thanks Mum. Naomi loves her beautful and cuddly sweater xxx

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Sherbet Pips Quilt

I first saw the Sherbet Pips fabric on Bea's blog and became fixated: I 'needed' this fabric! I thought it would be perfect for a quilt for Naomi. I've only completed a strip quilt so far, and wanted to try a 'real' pattern, and yet doable for a beginner. The Fat Quarter Store had just what I was looking for: the Winter Sherbet quilt kit using the Sherbet Pips fabric and Thimble Blossom's 'Piece of Cake' pattern.

Naomi admiring her Sherbet Pips quilt

The pattern was, as it's name implies, really easy to follow. Note that the original pattern uses non-directional fabric. Since some of the prints in Sherbet Pips are directional, my first tip is that before you start happily cutting away, you'll want to take the fabrics you selected from your layer cake and figure out which half of your blocks you want to be 'portrait' and which will be 'landscape'. Then cut the squares accordingly (Tall and thin vs short and wide).

Sherbet Pips Quilt

My only other newbie tip is that one once all the blocks are complete I recommend that you lay them out according to how you want them to be displayed. I numbered them so that I knew which order they go in, but also for those blocks that had non directional fabric, I knew which way the block should be oriented when I sew them together. Besides, I find it fun to arrange, rearrange, stand back, umm, aah, rearrange some more until I find that most pleasing composition :)

Front and back

Finally for the quilting I stitched in the ditch around the pieces in each block, and then stitched tram lines in the sashing. I like how the tram lines zig and zag around each block from the top to the bottom of the quilt.

I like it!

This is far from perfect. And at times I was disheartened with it's complete lack of anything resembling perfection. But you know what, I love it! Flaws and all. I was telling one of the ladies at the local quilt store about this, and she said "Honey, have you not heard of the 30/30 rule?... If in 30 years from now, at 30 feet, no-one can tell then it doesn't matter!" I like this lady!

Ooh this is a good story

What's most important to me is that Naomi likes it too. She runs up, pats it, and exclaims 'NAAAHS" (Naomi speak for 'nice').

Wishing you a great weekend,
Sam xxx

Saturday, February 04, 2012

Broad street fingerless gloves

snowball, originally uploaded by samjoepics.
Joe had asked for a pair of fingerless gloves for Christmas ...and may I quote: 'if I truly loved him they'd be handmade!' Ha ha the goof!

I used the Broad Street mitten pattern - which is a fingerless glove that has an optional mitten 'flap'. Since I didn't need the mitten portion i simply followed the fingerless glove instructions. The only other change I made was knitting each finger so that they match in length (the pattern has them sloping in length).

The yarn is from Creatively Dyed Yarns. I picked it up at Estes Park Wool Market this last year. The colorway is 'Tribal' (I also think you could call it sci-fi or alien). I am really loving this yarn. Great colourway, nice feel, and the yardage seems to go on forever!

Joe is super happy. And feels loved ha ha!
Now he wants a matching balaclava! Since there seems to be oodles of yarn left I think this might be possible.

Loving the snow, and nowhere to go :)

Friday, February 03, 2012

Knit fast, Die Warm

Knit fast, Die Warm, originally uploaded by samjoepics.
:) How cute is this Christmas gift! When I get my craft room all set up I think I'll keep it framed in an embroidery hoop just like this.

What's cuter still is how it was gift wrapped:
Cross stitch Christmas gift

But perhaps cutest of all is my little cross stitch helper: Naomi would sit snuggled up next to me waiting for the needle to appear through the top of the cross stitch fabric, which is when she'd carefully pull the needle and thread through the fabric and then hand the needle back to me. I'd then put the needle back down through the next hole in the fabric and as the thread followed Naomi would giggle and hit the top of the fabric. Very cute! Repeat this a fair few times over the course of a couple of evenings, and ta-da you have yourself a fun cross stitch, with fun memories built in. :)

On the topics of fun memories, we had a snow day here in Colorado today. Naomi just loved the "nossse" (ha ha.. close, but not quite the right pronunciation!)

Best day EVER!

Loving rolling around in the snow!

OK, it is pretty fun

Stay warm and safe my friends, and enjoy the excuse to stay inside working on those crafty projects. Sam xxx