The first snows of winter

The first snows of winter
Beauty!

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Friday Night Sew In Report

My friend Linda P and I had a lovely FNSI – although it took place mostly in the late afternoon.  Most mornings when we first get up we sit out on the lanai and sew, but yesterday in the morning it was so windy that we had to retreat inside to do our morning sewing.  There were lots of interesting things on the beach … (I won’t show you my dead fish pictures :))

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And the wind surfers were out in force…

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By late afternoon the strong wind from earlier in the day had lessened and the sun wasn’t too hot for us to sit out on the lanai.

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Linda stitching away on her cross stitch.

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And me stitching on my Grandmother’s Flower Garden.  added these two new flowers.

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I need one more flower to complete this row.  I hope to get it added in today.

How did your FNSI go?

Janet

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

A Crabby Day

Literally…. I got some great looks at crabs today.  Two large ones.  The surf is high and was coming in and these boys just didn’t seem to know what to do…  They were both good at taking an aggressive stance though…

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The one above was trying to climb a retaining wall.  he certainly blended in with it.

I bought a piece of Shashiko cloth and thread in one of the local quilt shops and have whipped it up over the last two days.

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This is intended to make a small pillow.  Aren’t the colours lovely?!  I think I will pick up another one so I can have a pair of them.

Today was for beach walking, ocean dipping, reading and an afternoon trip to the aquarium, which is a ten minute walk away.  It is so interesting and we have a week pass.  I think we’ll be back there a few times.

Aloha…

Janet

Monday, January 19, 2015

A holiday post

Is it okay that my first post of 2015 comes to you from Hawaii where I am on holiday?  We are in Maalaea, Maui staying in a condo with our friends Linda P. and Judy.  We are right on the beach – the surf pounds outside the screened door, humpback whales provide constant delight as they cavort in the waters.  We have walked the beach, gone swimming and snorkelling, identified birds and fish, all right outside the door.  A fantastic holiday.  I am posting from my new tablet, so learning the ropes for a new adventure in computers… And I have even found some time for sewing. 

My January hexies, made for Anne-Lise in Denmark, went in the mail the other day.

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One of our birding conquests – the Hawaiian Black Necked Stilt, or Ae’o, a rare bird – yet we have seen hundreds at the wildlife refuge which is a short walk up our beach.

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And an early morning beach shot…

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Ahh…

Janet

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Friday Night Sew In Report

I know I have been absent again for the last few weeks…  but for the first time in a couple of months I have actually got to participate in Friday Night Sew In.  It’s a good thing too because, as you’ll see I have sewing that needs to be done.

These are the two things I accomplished for FNSI.  They are both swap blocks for the Canadians Quilt Bee that I am involved with.  One is the November block (yes indeed I am late); the other is the December block.

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Sewing machine block for Dominique.

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Improv tree block for M-R.

What am I doing all the time that is keeping me so busy?  Well for instance today was Christmas bird count day.  My friend and I were sent out to walk down the tracks to Tin Cup Creek to try and see grouse or ptarmigan.  We saw two ravens.  Then we walked around downtown and saw two more ravens and two magpies.  Lots of birds at my feeder though.  We are almost at the December solstice.  It is tomorrow (the 21st) at 23:03.  Then the daylight starts to come back a few minutes a day.  Dusk was starting to fall at 3:40 in the afternoon.  Of course the grey skies didn’t help.

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I hope you are having a wonderful “day before the winter solstice”.  Smile

Janet

Monday, December 8, 2014

A fun mail day

I have been away visiting my brother and sister-in-law in Seattle and a quick stop to see a friend on Salt Spring Island.  More about the trip in another post.  Today I want to tell you about the fabulous mail waiting for me on my return. Smile 

First up this lovely postcard received from Lin in the Christmas postcard swap organized by Sheila.  I think it is done with Shiva paintsticks but it may be some kind of foil… I’m waiting for Lin to let me know the details.

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Then I received my paper piecing blocks for November/December from Michell.  She is also in the Inchy Hexagon Flower Swap that I participate in.  Despite a big move, Michell is further ahead than me as I don’t have her blocks for this swap made yet.

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A couple of weeks ago there was a blog tour for the 10th edition of Quiltmaker’s 100 Blocks and I WON!! My copy from Rochelle has arrived.  This is so exciting as I love this magazine, I have always entered the giveaways on the blog tours and this is the first time I have one a copy. Open-mouthed smile

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And then to top it all off, icing on the cake if you will… Carol at Sew Sisters Quilt Shop sent me a lovely thank-you gift for participating in their Canadian blog hop.  These fabrics are from Moonshine by Tula Pink for Free Spirit, which is the line that I chose from the Sew Sisters Shop as a give away on the blog hop. 

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And included was a gift from Aurifil which was a sponsor in the blog hop.  I love these threads!

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So I have reasons to like Canada Post today.  Smile  How about you?  Have you received anything fun lately?

Janet

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Postcards – Spoiler Alert for Lin

LIN, if you don’t want to see your postcard before it gets there, close this now!!

I joined two postcard swaps this month.  I have more than enough to do, but postcards are so much fun so I said yes.  Here they are.

The first one was organized by Brandy Lynn.  The theme is snowflakes.  (Can you tell?)  These are plastic sequin snowflakes on a blue background overlaid with tulle with silver flecks.  Even though I first glued, then sewed the snowflakes on, I felt a need to put stitching around them.  I thought that the swirly circles would give the effect of swirling snowflakes.  It looks more like that in person than it does in the photo.  I don’t know who I am sending this one to yet.

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The second one is for a swap organized by Sheila.  The theme is Christmas Smile  I decided to play with my new technique. We had strategic planning meetings at work the last two days – a perfect time to do a bit of stitching.  Lots of channels emerged.  This card is going to Lin in France. 

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Have you made any postcards lately?

Janet

Monday, November 24, 2014

Kantha Quilting and a Winner

I am just back from my two day Kantha Quilting class with Anna Hergert and I am tired right out.  Workshops are so intense as you try to absorb as much as you can and spend lots of time creating while having lots of fun! But because I am tired I am not going to tell you much about Kantha Quilting.  The bare bones – it is a style of hand stitching that originates in India and environs.  It was traditionally used to secure several layers of worn saris so that they could be used for other functions. 

Here is my practice piece that I worked on

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And here is my main piece, started this morning.  I started out predicting it would take me three years to finish this but by the end of the day I had revised that time frame to one year.

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My current plan is to put a stitched border around the piece and to fill in the background with Kantha stitches to make channels.  You can see what I mean by channels in my practice piece.  I also plan to use embellishments on this piece.

So now on to the big news…..  The winner of the giveaway from Sew Sisters Blogathon Canada is …

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Marnie  November 21, 2014 at 6:34 AM  Thanks for sharing

(Yup.   I had to make up little pieces of paper and put them in a bag, since people could enter on more than one post…)  I’ve sent Marnie an email requesting her address info.

That’s all I have to tell you today.  Hope your Tuesday morning is bright and sunny. Smile

Janet

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Today is Day 6

Welcome to the last day of Blogathon Canada brought to you by Sew Sisters Quilt Shop in the metropolis of Toronto, Canada.

Did I tell you about Sew Sisters?  They have a brick and mortar shop in Toronto and an on-line store at the link above.  They stock Kona solids, lots of beautiful modern fabics, a Canadiana line called Stonehenge which is awesome, and lots of other lovely fabrics.  The prices are good, the service is better and every once in a while they have a free shipping in Canada event.  And they have been hosting this awesome Canadian blogathon for the last three years.  Check them out!

The host bloggers for today are

Lorna from Ontario at Sew Fresh Quilts

Sandy from Ontario at Upstairs Hobby Room

They will have more giveaways, and lists of Ontario bloggers for you to check out.  And there will be another giveaway on the Sew Sisters blog.

Thank you again to the sponsors!  Robert Kaufman, Timeless Treasures, Camelot Fabrics, Northcott and Aurifil.

I have created a monster for myself, having such an awesome giveaway.  And deciding that I had to respond to the commenters and check out their blogs!  Oh well…  There have been quite a few no reply commenters.  If you check and find out that you are one of them, you can email me your contact info.  Don’t leave another comment – I won’t accept your info update that way. 

A few people asked about the arrow blocks.  I made these for one of our participants in the Canadians Quilt Bee on Flickr.  This might be a closed group – I’m not sure.  Anyway here is the link to the tutorial we used.  It is from Carla at Grace and Favour blog.  And it is pieced, not paper pieced, and is actually quite easy to make.

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This is what our weather has been like.  We are waiting patiently for more snow and colder temperatures!

Janet

Friday, November 21, 2014

It is Day 5–MY Day!!

Hi there everyone.  Welcome to Blogathon Canada brought to you by Sew Sisters Quilt Shop in the metropolis of Toronto, Canada. 

Today is my day to participate in the blogathon along with Josée, from Québec, who blogs at The Charming NeedlePlease be sure to check out her blog and giveaway and the links to other Québec quilt bloggers that she will share with you.

And on Sew Sisters blog today there is an awesome giveaway from Timeless Treasures.

I am a wife, mother and work-a-holic in my early sixties.  (Dang that job!)  My three daughters have all flown the coop and settled into lives of their own.  Two of them live  about an hour away.  The third one (you may have heard me whine about this before) lives at the other end of the country, in Newfoundland.  And Canada is a big country!   I have three grandchildren; one granddaughter and a grandson live nearby, and then there is the granddaughter in Newfoundland. 

I have loved sewing since I was a young girl.  I love textiles and threads and all the trims and how you can make beautiful things with your hands and a needle.  I started quilting about 7 or 8 years ago and I really love how creative a medium it is.  I make traditional quilts and mug rugs and bags and pin cushions and…. My favourite part of quilting is taking bits and pieces of fabric and playing with them to come up with an individual creation.  I only wish I had more time for play.   

I have one piece of sewing that I want to show you today.   In October my daughter and her family came to visit for almost three weeks.  My daughter arrived with a “project” that she wanted me to help her with.  This is what we made…

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For those who don’t recognize this it is Elsa’s dress.  Elsa is the queen in Frozen, the latest popular Disney movie.  And wearing it is my granddaughter J, from Newfoundland.

The thing about making this dress…. see that sparkly fabric in the bodice.  Well it is some kind of stretch fabric with thick sequins on it and MY SEWING MACHINE WOULD NOT SEW IT!  So every seam that touched the bodice had to be sewn by hand.  And believe me, every piece of the dress touches the bodice.  It was an interesting, but long project.

Please check out my earlier posts to see some of my other sewing projects.

I am the representative blogger for Canada’s territories. 

Map of Canada

See the red, yellow and blue areas across the top of the map.  That is the area I represent.  It is an area of about 3,500,000 square kilometres.  That is a lot of space.  The combined population of the three territories is… about 107,000.  That means that each person has 32 or more square kilometres to roam around in.  Now mind you a lot of it is barrenland, ice and bush.  But here is my point.  I have two, just two, other quilting bloggers to share with you from the territories.  And they both live within an hour of me…  So please make sure you visit them.

Quilting Under the Midnight Sun

http://www.quiltingunderthemidnightsun.blogspot.ca/

A Geeky Crafty Life

http://fignie.blogspot.ca/

Enough prattling.  It is time to get on with my giveaway.  Sew Sisters Quilt Shop is providing this lovely fat quarter bundle for my giveaway.  Too bad I can’t win it!!

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The giveaway is open internationally.  It will be open until midnight my time on November 23rd and I will announce the winner on November 24th.  If you are a no reply blogger make sure that you leave your email address.  If I can’t contact you, then you cannot win. 

To enter my giveaway please leave a comment on any of my posts for Blogathon Canada.  The others can be found here, here, here and here.  If you leave a comment on more than one post, you will be entered more than once. Smile 

Don’t forget that all the giveaways for Blogathon Canada will be open through the 23rd so if you have missed any please go back and check them out.  And check out the giveaways on Sew Sisters blog as well.

And please come back and visit me again. SmileSmileSmile

Janet

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Today is Day 4

of Blogathon Canada hosted by Sew Sisters Quilt Shop!

And the blogs for today are:

Heather from Saskatchewan at Peace.Love.Quilt

Lori from Manitoba at Night Owl Quilting

And once again, don’t forget to check out Sew Sisters blog because they will have an awesome giveaway as well. 

This evening I went to a trunk show with Anna Hergert.  She is an art quilter from Saskatchewan, who is here in the Yukon to teach some classes.  The photos on her website don’t do justice to her work.  It is stunning!  I signed up for the second class, which is on Sunday and Monday.  After seeing the trunk show I am regretful that I won’t be at the first class on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.  But I am swamped at work and just can’t afford to take the time off.  Dang that job anyway!

Anna gave me permission to take photos and to put them on my blog as long as I acknowledged her.  I can’t say that my photos really portray the intricacy and beauty of her pieces, but I’ll show a couple of them anyway.

Can you guess what this piece portrays? It is called Alberta Night Sky.

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This one is called Memories of Italy ll.

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She uses an amazing array of fabrics, papers, man made materials, paints etc. in her work.  I am awesomely inspired.

Don’t forget that tomorrow is MY day in the Blogathon and I will have my own fantastic giveaway going on.  I hope to see you then.

Janet

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

It is Day 3

of Blogathon Canada hosted by Sew Sisters Quilt Shop!

The blogs to visit today are:

Kelsey from Alberta  Everyday Fray

Leanne from Alberta  She Can Quilt

And don’t forget to check out Sew Sisters blog because they will have another awesome giveaway as well. 

My daughter informs me that people in Newfoundland don’t consider it to be a “Maritime province”.  They are okay with Atlantic, but Maritime just won’t do.  I haven’t had time yet to look through all the blogs from yesterday to see if there are any from Newfoundland.  I hope there are.

I have been very behind with my October blocks for the Canadians Quilt swap.  I guess you can tell how behind I am since they are October blocks.  I couldn’t  see a moment in the next week when I could get them done, so I came home from work today and MADE myself work on them.  They were easier than I thought they would be.  So here are two arrow blocks which are on their way to Saskatoon tomorrow…

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I’ll see you tomorrow when I’ll be back to let you know which blogs you should check out for Thursday!

Janet

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

It is Day 2

of Blogathon Canada hosted by Sew Sisters Quilt Shop!

The blogs for today are:

Linda from the Maritimes

Linda from the Maritimes

Tee hee.  Yes there are two Lindas and two blogs.  For those of you who don’t live in Canada, the Maritimes refers to Canada’s four “maritime” provinces: New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland.  They are on the east coast of Canada.  Very far away from where I live.  My middle daughter and her husband and my granddaughter live in Newfoundland.  On the very most eastern point of Canada.  I live almost at the most western point of Canada.  …. Oh yes you are waiting for the blog links…

Linda from Scrapmaster

Linda from Stitch Lines

Remember they will each have links to lots of interesting Canadian (maritime Canada) blogs.  And they will each have an awesome giveaway.  And check out Sew Sisters blog because they will have another awesome giveaway as well. 

Today I finished my November hexie flowers for the Inchy Hexagon Flower Swap.  They will be winging their way to Simone in Australia. 

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See you tomorrow for an update on the day’s blogs in Blogathon Canada.

Janet

Monday, November 17, 2014

It is Day 1

of the Blogathon hosted by Sew Sisters Quilt Shop!  Sew Sisters is located in North Toronto, Ontario and I actually got to visit the store in person last year! 

The blogs for today are:

Stacey from British Colombia   Stacey in Stitches

Jessica from British Colombia  Momiji Studio

I’m going to check out Stacey and Jessica’s blogs and I hope you do too!  They will tell you about themselves and what they like to create.  And they will both have a giveaway from one of our sponsors.  Smile 

Robert Kaufman

           Timeless Treasures             

                           Camelot Fabrics

                                          Northcott

                                                    Aurifil

There will also be a great giveaway from Timeless Treasures on the Sew Sisters blog so check them out as well.

Edited to add:  I think that there is actually a giveaway on Sew Sisters blog every day of the blogathon.  Sweet!

When I told you about my month of September last week I forgot to mention the quilt retreat that I went to.  Three days of sewing and fun in beautiful Haines Junction.  I didn’t take any pictures….  but I can show you some of what I worked on.

A wee bit of quilting…. I hope to have another finish to show off soon!!

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I finished the third panel on my Three Cat Stories Quilt.  This one was started in …..2010…  It isn’t quite done yet.  I am still going to put a border on it, but I am aiming to give it away at Christmas so I had best get on with it!

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And I put some more of my postage stamps blocks together…. There is a long way to go on this quilt as this is at most a quarter of what I need.  But it does go together quickly once I work on it. 

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That’s all for today.  I’ll be back tomorrow to remind you which blogs to check out for the day.

Janet

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

I Have a Finish!!

I feel ecstatic!!  It has been so long since I completed a quilt and this one has been in the works for more than two years.  In fact I completed this quilt TOP more than two years ago!

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The pattern, by Buttonhole Quilt Design is called “Log Chute Quilt” although I have been telling everyone that it is a Sunshine and Shadows version of a log cabin quilt.

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The finished quilt is 80 by 90 inches.

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The big hold up for me was figuring out a way to quilt this gigantic monster.  I finally sent it to a long arm quilter, Dianne Gale, in Whitehorse.  The quilting is an continuous flower design.  The quilting thread is blue both top and bottom.  At first I asked her to use a red thread but then I decided that I had spent so much time piecing the darn thing that I didn’t want to cover up the quilt blocks with thread. 

This quilt is for DD # 3.  I struggled with a name for the quilt.  This is what I came up with.

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Fabrics used: blues: FLEUR-C by Timeless Treasures, an unnamed blue batik, Hi Lily, Hi Lo by South Sea Imports; greens: Festive Foliage for Robert Kaufman, Krystal by Michael Miller and Designer Essential Harmony for Robert Kaufman.  The back is Shadow Play, a flannel by Maywood Studio.

I am giving away this pattern – I won’t ever make it again.  If you would like to have it please leave me a comment saying so.  If there is more than one person that would like it, I will draw a name. 

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Woo Hoo!!

Janet