Thursday, December 31, 2015

Best of 2015

Cheryl is hosting this linky party at Meadow Mist Designs.  What a great idea for us to share our top five posts from 2015, great for our readers to fondly revisit some beautiful quilts, great for others who might see them for the first time, and great for us to look back over our work during the past year.  The criteria for picking your five "Best of" posts is wide open.  I decided to pick my favourites.

1.  One of my goals for 2015 was to get a pattern published.  This little makeup or tchotchke pouch was published on Moda Bakeshop in May.

2.  A Namaste Hug for Gillian was a quilt I made for my first Yin yoga teacher and my friend. We also did our Ashtanga Teacher Training together.  She is fighting breast cancer, finished chemo now, but still not out of the woods.  It was the first quilt where I used Minky.

3.  I was part of the New Bloggers' Quilt Hop in the summer.  When it finished we had the option to participate in a new block blog hop for Fabri-Quilt.  I designed this block, which has a 3D tactile component in the small white triangle.  I wanted to create a secondary pattern when combining blocks; I plan to make an entire quilt and donate it as a Fiddle or Twiddle quilt.

4.  Parisville Weave is a quilt kit I bought from American Patchwork & Quilting Quilt Sampler 2011 magazine.  I sewed it up a winter ago and finally quilted it up with several custom designs on Avril, my Avanté in August.  When I bought it, I didn't even realize it fit the "modern" quilt criteria at the time, nor had I heard of Tula Pink fabric; I just fell in love with the colours.

5. This seashell runner is a pattern I bought on our second trip to Florida, back in, ahem, 2005.  It is designed by a Florida quilter.  I had a lot of fun making this unusually constructed quilted and appliquéd runner, which fits, by the way, on both the coffee table in our Florida home as well as on the one in our Ontario home by Lake Erie!

Only five is hard!  I could have picked ten!  Be sure to hop over to the linky and see some beautiful eye candy, and if you haven't, maybe pick your five and join in!

One more thing to remember, is that today is the last day to take advantage of Craftsy's year end sale on supplies.  It ends at 11:59MT tonight, so for us in the east that means 9:59ET!!  Hurry! Hurry! I may have already taken advantage of some of the amazing deals, like fat quarter sets that work out to $4/yard Canadian dollars, yep!

If you click here to the sale, I will get a 'leedle' compensation (which we all know will go RIGHT back to them lol) and I thank you very much for enabling, er supporting my passion!  ;-)  I'm going back I think, to pick up one or two (or several) more items at these ahhh-mazing prices.

Happy New Year everyone!  
Thanks for reading, for leaving such wonderful and helpful comments (Rocco is about to test a couple of super-rugged chew toys after my last post, so stay tuned), and for sharing your knowledge, your ideas, and your friendship.  I truly have loved this past year of QBL.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Christmas Stocking #2

This one couldn't go on the blog ahead of time, as Dayna reads the blog!  It comes with a story.  The best part was her reaction when she saw it:  "Mum! I didn't know you made quilted stockings!"  Those kind of moments one cannot put a pricetag on.
This is a scrappy stocking extraordinaire.  There are scraps from Dayna's grad quilt (which, no, is not done, but I do have a pretty solid idea of the quilting plan ... 3 days, well, yeah, more than that, of planning), the letters are made from Laurel Burch fabric scraps from a bag I made for a very good friend several years ago, and the cuff is more of the white and silver fabric I used for the Snowalong snowflakes and for Brady's stocking cuff.  There are two Christmas motif squares from the fabric on the back of my Snowflake tea cosy.

Under my Ott-Lite, mainly to show how true colours it really is, but it also shows off the Sulky Holoshimmer thread with which I quilted it.
The one face-on angel kitty with the halo is from a quarter yard of another Laurel Burch fabric that I purchased ages ago to do ornaments or perhaps use the half circle skirts in kaleidoscopes...but it has not been used until now.

The back of the stocking is more precious Laurel Burch fabric I have hoarded, guarded, treasured, petted, for a very long time.  I fussy-cut a few of the kitties to fly here and there on the front of her stocking.

I nearly used it all on the back of Merry Cat-mas, but just couldn't do it.  I'm glad.  It should be a main fabric, right?

The lining is left over from Shift.  It just fit.

Thanks to Cindy of Stitchin At Home and to a free pattern off Craftsy, I figured out how to get the cuff on.  Basically it was the same method as for a lined bag.  Duh.  Oh man! Have any of you been checking out/taking advantage of the incredible deals and sales they have going on right now?!  Excuse me while I pop back over there...dangerous indeed.  But I will focus and finish this post first.

Love this black and white Christmas fabric from Henry Glass.  So unusual.  I based Dayna's stocking on the same pattern in Quilter's Newsletter Magazine that I used for Brady's.  I didn't bind Dayna's though, and although I love hers, I think a bound edge is a nicer finish.
Pretty festive
Brady walked by his many times without seeing it.  The bench with the snowman and mitten quilt draped across the back, effectively hid the stockings from view.  Sidenote: YES!!!! He is in the building, lol, probably sound asleep as I type, as he sort of reached the end of his rope tonight, poor little guy.  More on the visit later.  It has been a full 2 1/2 days, let me tell you.  :-)

The red one is a borrowed one from Dayna for the fur kids.  That's Naala's new baby cow hanging out the top.  Rocco got a blue tug-rope ducky that lasted less than 3 minutes on Christmas Day (MacGyver and Dayna had a bet) before he'd de-winged it and started de-stuffing it!  He got to have it Boxing Day (Dec. 26 for those of you who have no idea what I'm talking about) for another 5 minutes, maybe 10, and it was done, tug rope ripped off, head ripped off, all the stuffing torn out...he had a ball for those minutes.  Wish I could find a Rocco-proof stuffy.  The only thing that lasts is a black Kong.  Which is, I know, not a stuffy.  We tried Wubba, nope.  Fireman hose toys, nope.  I digress.  The fourth stocking is Dayna's boyfriend's.  Our stockings, fur kids', MacGyver's, and mine, are, you guessed it, in Florida.

The story.  When Brianne and Dayna were, oh, 4 and 2, I believe, I bought a pre-quilted Precious Moments--one long hair (for Brianne), one short hair (for Dayna), perfect--stockings panel from Fabricland.  Upon sewing them up, I discovered that the short-haired one was a little boy, not a girl! No... So I used them regardless, probably as I was finishing making them on Christmas Eve, with the promise to Dayna that I would make her a better stocking for next Christmas.

She's 27 now.

So her stocking is 25 years overdue.  She said on Christmas Day that no, she loves that stocking.  Somehow I think she loves this one more.  At least I hope so.

Stocking Stats:
Pattern: Based on Patchwork Stocking from "Quilt It For Christmas" 2004
Size: approximately 20" long by 12" from toe to side edge
Fabric: scraps and stash
Batting: Warm 'n Natural
Quilted: on my Bernina
Threads: pieced with Gütermann, quilted with Sulky Holoshimmer, appliquéd with Coats and Clark Dual Duty 100% polyester

Posts are few right now.  I know you get that.  I'm a tad pre-occupied.
Pug hat from Nana and Grandpa (with battery-powered twinkling Christmas lights), JJ Watt, his favourite player, jersey from Auntie Dayna.  One over the moon little boy.

Linking up with Crazy Mom Quilts for Finish It Up Friday (on Monday this week) and Oh Scrap! at Quilting is More Fun Than Housework.
Update Dec. 22/16: This post has now been linked with Val's Quilting Studio

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Santa's Still Throwing Up Christmas All Over the House

With 3 days to go, I am pretty much as ready as I'm going to get...Christmas dinner groceries yet to shop for, one last set of squares for which to make the marshmallow topping, an old family favourite recipe, Marshmallow Fantasies.  Oh.  And a queen-sized quilt to quilt.  The flimsy was finished on Saturday, the backing got assembled Sunday and Monday amid other life requirements, which, as you may recall include having Santa throw up Christmas all over my house (Dayna says she did not say "barf up") as both daughters, grandson, MacGyver and me are all here in Kingsville for Christmas for the first time (small squeal of excitement)...and so it goes, sewing and decorating slowly.

The quilt is a guild retreat mystery from 2006. Love how the blocks poke into the border, and that there are 3 layers of stars.

I pinned this to my Pinterest page for house decorating ideas probably 2 years ago.  I decided to try to recreate it.  I'm pretty pleased with the result!  Dollar Store fake twigs (which, by the way, I discovered on my walk with Rocco the other day, are exactly what Burning Bushes look like right now!), Dollar Store craft paint, wine bottles (the most enjoyable part of the process, ha) and some gold ribbon.
From left to right: first coat of paint to cover, the second sponge-blobbed on (technical term right), still wet, the third end dried product.

I made my own stencils, just printed out a J and a Y from an Old English-style font, and cut it out with an Exacto-knife.  For the snowflake, I made a beautiful one out of paper and then realized I needed it in stencil form, like the reverse image.....nvm I know what I mean!  So using a pencil, I drew the outline of a simple snowflake very lightly, and then, holding my breath, trying to be steady, I went over it with red paint and a very fine paintbrush.

Front foyer at night. Dayna gave us some of her decorations she didn't use this year.  The vast majority of my stuff is in Florida.
I bought a red towel at the Dollar Store, $1 as opposed to $3 or more for a fancy Christmas one, and used a leftover strip from Brady's stocking to decorate the towel.  I had the red tea towel with an appliqué project in mind...didn't happen yet, so I used up more of the leftover strips from his stocking and the cushion cover I made and decorated the tea towel.
Did a decorative stitch and other top-stitching in Sulky metallic on the towel.  Red Isacord on the tea towel, which hasn't been washed yet, as you can see.
The weather is not cooperating, as anyone who lives in the northern US and Canada knows.  El Niño is to blame, and I am totally okay with that!  Outside of one day where this happened:
On the Greenway in Kingsville, Dec. 19.  The "snow shower" lasted half a day with the temperature hovering around freezing.
One week earlier, we had a high of 16C/61F!!  And this happened:
December 12, dogs and MacGyver catching some rays--I even had an Osteospermum blooming still at that point in the pot you see by the patio door
Yesterday it was 10C/50F again and tomorrow we are supposed to go to 14C/58F!  Crazy.  Love it.

I won't be posting again until, well, not sure exactly when.  On Christmas Day evening, we are FaceTiming with Brianne and Brady, and that is when we are going to tell Brady that he is coming here for 8 days!!!!  This is the conversation I'm imagining:

Me:  Oh Brady, I so wish you could come to Nana and Grandpa's house for Christmas...We miss you so much.
Brady:  Yeah, me too, Nana. I wish I could dive through my iPad and land in your house. (he will probably mime diving through his iPad, as he has done in the past on more than one occasion)
Me:  Wouldn't it be cool if you could hop on a plane tomorrow morning and fly here?
Brady:  Uh huh...I would like that very much.
Me: Well, Nana and Grandpa have done that!  You and your mummy are going to get on a plane at the airport tomorrow morning and fly here!!  For 8 whole days!!
Brady:  HUH?!!  Really??
Me:  Surprise!
Then we all will be laughing and cheering and jumping around...well not MacGyver, man of restrained emotions...but Dayna and her boyfriend will be here when we FaceTime and Brianne and MacGyver and I have been DYING with excitement to tell Brady for a couple of months now, almost spilling the beans on several's going to be an awesome Christmas!

I've been meaning to get a photo of this little sticker in the yoga studio bathroom, but I don't usually have my phone on me.  I did the other day.  It is very appropriate at this busy, busy, often-stressful season:
Merry Christmas everyone, and remember to be kind to yourself as well. :-)

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Craftsy is a Preeti Awesome Website!

Nope, that's no typo in the title.  I have loved Craftsy since I signed up in July 2013, and took my first two classes, Free Motion Fillers with Leah Day and Free-Motion Quilting With Feathers with Angela Walters.  To date I have bought several more classes, downloaded several free classes--if you did not know that there are free classes, then simply enter "free" in the search box and you will get a pop-up that lets you select "free classes", and voilà! There are a plethora of them (167 to be exact) from which to choose, in all sorts of subject areas--I've also bought several patterns, downloaded several freebies as well, and, as of two weeks ago, finally succumbed to the temptation and bought some fabric.
In such a pretty plastic bag too!

And it's all Preeti's fault.  She has a terrific blog, Sew Preeti Quilts.  I love her sense of humour and her Paul stories and conversations.  I love the stories behind her quilts, and I am so impressed with how she can often find an easier way to do a technique, for example, check out this post!  Well, in her post on her two hexie quilts (btw where she simplified making a thousand and one hexies lol), she told of her fabulous score on fabric from Craftsy.  ELEVEN beautiful yards of it.  All for under US$50.  Okay, when I see $5-6/yard, (or in this case LESS!) I go running to check it out, literally and figuratively.

Although I did not buy the hexie fabric, I sure did buy another 10-yard bundle.  It worked out to  CA$4.90/yard.  That's no typo.  Canadian funds.  Blue is my favourite colour, all shades and hues of it.  Oh, I love a rich burgundy and most pinks, a soft green, or a deep purple, but if I had to pick just one colour, it would be blue.  You would know this in a heartbeat if you took a look at my stash shelves. I have more than double the amount of blues as compared to other colours.  So of course I need to ramp up my blues palette, right?!  Here's what was in that bundle:
My least favourite is the bottom one, but it still works with the palette
and these
I am itching to make something with these; it will be my own design.  Just look at the stack from this angle!
Blues and seafoam greens and even a Kelly green
This was a real score.  I've been being bugged by my sister, brother and daughter to open an Etsy shop and sell some of my quilts.  This is what has been percolating on the back burner of my mind, and now with this purchase, it might be going to happen.  Thank you so much Preeti for the tip!  If you've been paying attention, you know I didn't stop with the bundle.
This was less than CA$20!  Prior to purchase, I googled the line under images to see what the prints looked like, as you don't get much of an idea from a jelly roll, and I really liked what I saw.  Here's another angle:
I really enjoy making quilts designed by Pam and Nicky Lintott. I have two of their books, and used another of theirs that belongs to the guild to make two wheelchair charity quilts, Stardust and Fairysteps.  I plan to use this roll with some stash yardage to make another one of their quilts...or maybe a jelly roll race even, as I haven't done one of those.

These were delivered to my door within 36 hours from the time I place the order! Unfortunately, they do not ship for free to Canada...something I didn't realize at the time...  However, I do want to tell you the fantastic story of what happened the day after I placed my order.

One of my mum's oft-used expressions is "eeee, gifted with afterthought" and I am the epitome of that saying!  I suddenly realized, 'Crap! (or some other bad word) I did not order through my own link!'  Yes!  You can do that!  Give credit to yourself for ordering through yourself.  Are you still with me?  ;-)

So I emailed.  At first my request was politely refused; 'Once the order has been placed, they can't go back in' kind of thing.  When I filled out the survey the next day and stated no, sorry, I wasn't completely happy with my Craftsy experience and explained what had happened, someone again got in touch with me.  They told me they wanted me to be 100% happy with the entire transaction.  They put my request through to Melissa, who is in charge of the affiliate programme. Melissa initiated a process, I had to fill out a short form, and I was then credited with my commission.  Melissa was so helpful and friendly.  I was left one very very happy customer.  I think the commission was just about $5.  In the grand scheme of things, that is a pretty paltry amount.  Yet it made for a happy customer.  Happy customers go back, and happy customers spread the word.

I'm spreading the word once more about another terrific sale on now at Craftsy: time to pick yourself up some supplies or a class to watch over Christmas, I'd say!  Remember, clicking through to their website via the button on my sidebar and purchasing will give me a little compensation from them for your business. Thank you!  And thank you Preeti.  :-)

Linking up with Molli Sparkles for Sunday Stash #156.  If you want to see some more loot of other bloggers,  head over there!

Friday, December 11, 2015

How to Make 168 HSTs Seem Like Only 84

When I finally decided upon the borders for my daughter's grad quilt this past week, I found the number of HSTs required to surround the quilt centre for the design was, gulp, 168.

That number can be rather daunting, because it requires a fair amount of work per HST:  cutting the squares, drawing a diagonal line from point to opposite point, sewing a scant 1/4" on either side of that line, and THEN... You need to cut on the drawn line, press the two triangle units open, and finally square each one to the required size.  This method yields two HSTs, and it is the one I had to use since I needed the HSTs in a certain colour order, so I couldn't use the no-waste method to make flying geese.

However, I have simplified some of the process, and thought I would share it with you today.  Any tip that saves time means I can get more done, right?!

Sew your two squares (mine are 3 7/8" so they end up 3.5" unfinished) together on either side of the drawn line.  Oh, how I love my Hera marker for drawing said line!  After sewing, layer two HST units, so 4 squares, on top of each other, so the stitching lines lie directly on top of each other.
I pulled back the top HST unit so you can see how I line up the stitching lines.
Cut apart on the drawn line, and presto! You will have four HSTs ready to press.  This may not seem like that big of a deal, but if you only have to cut apart 84 times as opposed to 168, those seconds do add up.  Wait, there's another timesaver yet too:

After you press these babies, they do need to be squared up, and have the little dog ears removed.  Think about it: cut on the diagonal to separate the two HSTs, then trim on all four sides of each HST to have same-size HSTs; that's a lot of cutting!  What if you could trim two at once?

What I do, is align one HST pressed unit atop another, right sides together, butting up the diagonal pressed seams.  If you press them to one side, this is a snap, as you can wiggle them and feel them nest together with your fingers.
Note how the diagonal seams abut. Also note (at the bottom left) how the dog ears oppose each other.
Now lay your ruler with the 45 degree angle along that diagonal seam and trim to the required size as you would with just one HST.  Mine are 3.5".  Voilà! You have two trimmed HSTs!

As of last night all 168 are done, and one of the four borders is all sewn together, and if I may say so myself, I got a rather big bubble of excitement and ooh! ahh! when I stepped back to look.

If you haven't already done so, here are two things you might want to check out:
1.  Craftsy.  There are some amazing scores (I have another post on mine ready to go) and, as Cynthia of Quilting is More Fun Than Housework pointed out, if you buy a kit, you don't have to make that pattern; you can use the fabric, which is usually a real bargain, for whatever other project(s) you want!  If you click through to Craftsy's website on the button on my sidebar, and purchase something, I do get a small commission for your purchase, as I am an affiliate.  If you would like to become an affiliate, shoot me an email, and I can tell you how to do that! It's very easy, and then you can spread the word!

2.  The huge giveaway going on at Sew Mama Sew until Sunday.  I did not jump in this time; just too much going on this month.  There are a plethora of sites to explore and freebies to be had!

Linking up with Confessions of a Fabric Addict because I am doing a happy dance that those HSTs are DONE, and that I can share with you a time-saving method.
This post is also featured here on Totally Tutorials!

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Sunday Stash

It's been a while since I made my last confession.  LOL  Here goes, "Bless me QBL (Quilting Blogland) friends, for I have supported my LQS and online stores..."

At the guild meetings, there is always a local vendor.  No tax and decent prices abound.  My stash is sadly lacking in greys.  This summer I picked up these four fat quarters (and I dug, as I am wont to do, for those with the manufacturer on the labels, have always been a label nerd that way) for $3 each.  That is very good for Canadian prices, which run around $15-18/metre.

I honestly have no clue where I got these two 1/3 yard, or perhaps metre, cuts. Interesting difference in the greys, no? The bottom one is quite lavender-ish in hue. 
At another guild meeting this summer,  I won 3 of the prizes (no fabric, drat) one night when there were a lot of prizes. Up until that meeting I had never won a thing.  On my way out of the meeting, I spied this lovely batik fat quarter as the vendor, the lovely Sue, was packing up and well, it would be rude not to purchase something from her since I won a couple of her donated prizes, right?  Sadly there is no indication as to whose batik it was and I didn't think to ask.

The same Sue donated this fabric as a prize at the quilting retreat I attended in mid-November.  Everyone got two picks at the prize table, which changed content, over the course of the weekend.  My first pick I chose a Mason jar of soup mix, the kind that looks pretty with the various layers of lentils, dried peas, pasta, etc.  I made it two weeks ago and it was delicious.  On my second pick I chose this 1/2 metre of fabric.  I could see a tea cosy!  Or maybe a charity quilt.  I purchased the cute reindeer ornament pattern for $7 from Pastime Pieces, a shop that I learned about at the retreat.  It's in Blenheim, Ontario, not far away at all.

Do you see the 5 exquisite wooden buttons on the fabric?  I bought these from a sweet Columbian girl whose sister was also at the retreat, visiting from Columbia.  The sister did not speak any English. She was an exquisite seamstress! Their family makes these buttons in Columbia, as well as beautiful crafts, (lots of snowman-themed items!).  She had brought a few buttons to sell for 75c each, $1 for the sewing machine as it was larger.  Look at the size of the 2 little wooden buttons included in that reindeer pattern! For about half the price of that pattern ($4) I got these 5 buttons!

Another colour I am working hard to improve stock on hand of is the aqua family.  At one of the wheelchair charity quilt sewing days, Sue had brought a selection of 1/2 yard cuts and fat quarters as some of the ladies had asked her to.  I had requested a piece of this beautiful aqua from Kaufman if she had any left.  She did. $5.  The vibrant fat quarters below it are also hers and are from the quilting retreat.  These have a specific destination, but that's all I'm saying for now.  They were $3 each.

You may remember I have been through some angst with my local guild, but I am happy to say that I have met some very sweet, dear friends through the wheelchair charity quilts, and more who aren't members through attending that quilting retreat last month.  Sewing alone is fine; you have your setup and your stuff at hand, but sewing with friends, like-minded friends, is at another level.  There is an energy that is tangible, a bond, a sharing, a learning and friendly atmosphere that inspires my creativity and soaks into the fibre (pun intended) of my being.  I learned about yet another LQS through one of the gals at the retreat, Sewcraft in Essex.  This is where I purchased some of these pieces:
The "Cherie" heads are what's left from makeup bags I sewed for my daughters.  I got the "It Girls", on sale for $12/metre, at Sewcraft, and possibly one of those 1/3 yard of greys in the second photo in this post.  The solid grey is from A Stitch in Time in Leamington.  I think it is Maywood, but I can't recall, $8.99/metre, though, a good price I thought.  The two pinks are 1/4 yard cuts from my Florida LQS, Expert Sewing Studio in Port Charlotte.  I picked them up last month. The bottom is "Paradiso" by Kate Spain, and the top is "Best Day Ever" by April Rosenthal.  These were US$11.03/yard.  This is going to be a quilt from a pattern I won.  More later.

Speaking of pink...
The colours are more intense in person: bright pinks except for the bottom one, and rich royal blues.
These randomly got stacked together to put away in my plastic drawers after the retreat. I'd taken them for cows' lips and eyes.  That odd brown fabric on top just did something when I saw the stack from a side view!  I would not have put these together, but I'm thinking they have to get used up and become a pretty quilt all together.  As a result,  I haven't put them back in their correct colour family drawers.

Now I'm off to make 168 HSTs for one of the borders on Dayna's grad quilt.  I must also mention the book I am reading this week that I am just LOVING:
I'm nearly finished it, and it is such a great story.  It has made me add several more titles to my "to read" list, which is longer if you can believe it, than my quilts "to be made" list!  The protagonist is the owner of a bookstore.  I love the way each chapter starts with a note about a good book he has read, A. J.'s brief summary and his thoughts on the book, and why his daughter, who wants to be a writer, should read it.
Linking up with the effervescing Molli Sparkles for Sunday Stash.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Three Friday Finishes!

Amazing what a little pressure from Christmas and family can do...I was told by both daughters, that I had better go whole hog to decorate for Christmas, or, and I quote, they'd "be going out and buying the shit and doing it themselves." To also quote Dayna's turn of phrase, "It (should) look like Santa barfed up Christmas all over the house."  Okay then.  With those kind of demands in no uncertain terms or language, I put the pedal to the metal this week.  A ton of photos you will find, and I make no apologies for this either. :-)
Three finishes since Monday!
The first finish was the cushion cover.  After I finished Brady's stocking on Monday, I still had several 2 1/2" pairs, so zing! Thought I'd made a simple cushion cover.  Okay, maybe 16"?  Meh, let's do 18".  Put pairs together, and cut a few a lot more squares from the leftover strips, and then decided to add in a few more fabrics, because you know me, the more fabrics, the merrier... Here is what was on my design wall Tuesday night:
I added in the Hoffman sparkly silver mint and grey fronds, the palest of Lizzy House mints bracelets, the polka dot aqua, and several reds, four striped squares of which are leftovers from my Pyramid Pouch Moda "Joyeux Noël" fabric!
I just have to add here what I told Cynthia of Quilting is More Fun Than Housework, it was the coolest thing, going to my tray of 2.5" squares and finding several reds already cut and ready to go!  Love me some organization, I do.

But, "Wait, wha-whut?" as the younger ones would say, "Something's not quite right..."  Somehow I went from a 9X9 grid to a 9X10 grid here...ah well, 100 squares even right? 10X10 it became, so a 20" square cushion cover it became.

Here is the finished flimsy Tuesday night:
mmm quilts! indeed. How I love these seafoam, mints, aquas and turquoises with reds!
There is pinky red, orangey-red, purpley-red, Christmas red, candy red, a touch of burgundy...I want me an entire quilt like this please.

Do you ever randomly have two fabrics fall together and have a "moment", one of those swelling-inside-your-entire-ribcage, heart-squeezing, throat-constricting, rising up from the solar plexus moments?  I've had a couple this week, one of which is right in that picture.  I cut into that aqua with gold crackle fabric, another Hoffman, the one in the lower right.  Mmm.  Go diagonally to the left up 3 rows and you see it again; now look at that rich purpley-red on top of it!!!  I died.  I want an entire quilt in those two colours, thank you very much.  Might be difficult as I have a 1/2 yard of the aqua and maybe a fat eighth all told left of that red...sniff.

Grabbed thread and decided to quilt this rather Red Pepper Quilts-esque square as Rita does:
The love affair with Sulky rayons continues; oops one Gütermann jumped in, great thread too.  I just happened to catch those two "be still my heart" squares in the centre of this photo...
The back of the front section:
Bleached muslin on the back of the sandwich; I just like the cleaner look inside the cushion cover
Finished pillow!
Bound with more of the Moda Joyeux Noël; I have always loved a striped binding
The back:
Nice 'n plump! I used up almost all of the trees fabric, just one strip left, and a 8X21" chunk of the two mints left now.
I was going to do one solid fabric on the back, but then I thought, hey, I've never done a scrappy back, what if I made the centre of the trees, so it kind of looks like a striped back.  Voilà.  That white pine trees on mint is my favourite of the stocking fabrics I picked up in Florida last month.  What's inside to make it so plump?  Well, serendipity strikes: downstairs is a couch. On the couch are many cushions, toss ones and arm ones. This is one of the fat arm ones!  No one would know a purple with tan binding cushion is inside this! Well, now you all do. ;-)  I almost bought one, but at $15, um no?  Reuse, repurpose right!
Cushion Cover Stats:
Size:  20" square
Fabric:  cotton scraps
Batting:  Warm 'n Natural scraps
Quilted: on my Bernina, all with a walking foot
Threads:  Pieced with Gütermann cotton; quilted with Sulky and one Gütermann rayons

Project #2 Super fast and simple:  a Christmas pillowcase for moi:
I can actually make the Roll It Up! pillowcase from All People Quilt in 1/2 hour from start to finish without the pattern now as I've made so many...
Last year I made each of my girls a pillowcase using that happy unconventional Christmas fabric.  I had just enough left of it to make a border on a case for me.  This method has no exposed seams; they're all French except for the side border which is a really cool method with no raw edges exposed either.

Last but not least, project #3:
Well, this was how it started yesterday morning:
A new cat mat for moi?!  I'll just have a little wash on it, make sure it's acceptable.
You can see I have actually managed to get the original tea cosy onto the chosen fabric for the back of the cosy to trace a pattern.  From here I am going to build this 9" snowflake block into the size needed to cut the cosy shape.

This cat gets so excited when I start something new, or bring out new fabric, kind of like my description of me when colour combos excite me.  She literally buzzes with exhilaration, no lie.  Zip! Up she appears on the cutting table, purring loudly, bunting my hand, and then situates herself strategically, in this case, on the prototype tea cosy a very good friend of mine made me many years ago.

When I move to the machine, thump! Then ba-dump! Off the cutting table she bounds, and then lands gracefully onto the sewing machine surface area.  She's mesmerized by the thread unwinding off the cone onto the bobbin.  Next she knows that silver spikey thing is going to start jumping up and down...
Threading the machine!!  Can I help? Please? Please? Puh-LEEZ?!  You know I can cut thread with these razor-sharp teeth of mine...  Yeah I know that all too well, Bella.
Even when I accidentally knocked her several times in the winding of a new bobbin and threading of new colour of thread, she did not move.
Whaaat?? At least I'm not sitting on top of your machine, so relax already.
Her head darts and twists and turns as I wind the bobbin and then re-thread the machine.  Okay what are we making with this lone snowflake on green from Joanne's Snowalong (at Canuck Quilter)? (sidenote, go to her latest post here, to see what Joanne is doing with her snowflakes--OMG! Love!)

We, my friends, we are making a tea cosy! I had planned to do this last year, took the snowflakes down to Florida with me, where I kind of lost my snowflake mojo among the palm trees...

Eeeep!  I forgot to take any other in-process shots, but here's what I did.  I layered the snowflake with leftover Legacy polyester batting (from the charity wheelchair quilts, I had 3 small strips, and they fit perfectly). I quilted around all the edges of the snowflakes with green Sulky Holoshimmer metallic, SUCH sparkle this thread has.  Then I just echoed around the six sides, a 1/4" with each pass until I'd come right to the edge of the cosy.
No sun this morning to really show off the sparkle...wait, oh man! I spy a Bella hair on the right, sigh.

For the back I used a double layer of Warm 'n Natural batting scraps, and a regular Sulky metallic in red/green/gold, the same I used on Brady's stocking.  I had a lightbulb moment after 3 stitches: why not set the machine for a longer, narrow zigzag to mimic that in the fabric!  And phew! been there, done that enough times, I remembered to change the throatplate from single hole to regular so I didn't break a Metallica needle.
I've had this for over a decade..."Candy Coated Christmas" by Thimbleberries; might be a good time to cut into it!
Here's the inside view:
Looks pretty cool!  I used an ivory paisleys on ivory fabric from the first quilt I made Dayna.  It's pretty much gone now except for one strip and some 2.5" squares. Feels good! And yes, I see a thread I forgot to cut down in there...
I didn't have anything much left of the green batik to use as binding so I thought I'd dig around for a burgundy to tone in with the dark colours in the cosy back.  This Kent Avery one from a stained glass manger scene I did eons ago worked!  Weird that in cutting the bias binding, the diagonal lines ended up straight!  Look at the binding around the tea cosy edge as opposed to that (cut on straight grain) of the binding around the bottom.  Like the cushion cover, I machine stitched it all, get these done and done.

Anyone for tea?  Um, maybe not at 34 damp degrees.  Oh well, as my friend Linda noticed last year, at least the grass is still nice and green, a side product of rain and fairly mild temperatures for December.

Tea cosy Stats:
Size:  11.5" wide by 11 " high
Fabric:  cottons and batik from my stash and scraps
Batting:  Legacy polyester for the front; Warm 'n Natural scraps for the back
Quilted: on my Bernina, all with a walking foot
Threads:  pieced with Gütermann cotton; quilted with Sulky Holoshimmer and Sulky Metallic

Linking up this marathon of a post with Crazy Mom Quilts, Confessions of a Fabric Addict, TGIFF on at Quokka Quilts today, and on Sunday with Oh Scrap! at Quilting is More Fun Than Housework.
Took this last night, mainly for Joanne, who does beautiful hand-quilting as well as gorgeous snowflakes, but also because it makes me smile. That's my hand-quilted original design tablerunner on the computer desk!! Never thought I'd see the took 15 years!
Well once I get the borrowed tree decorated, I'm thinking, according to Dayna, it's looking like Santa barfed up Christmas around here all right...every single room has something Christmassy in it!  And I have a month before we leave for Florida to finish Dayna's grad quilt. Long overdue.  I'm on it.

I'm also linking this post up with Scraptastic Tuesday at Mrs. Sew and Sow, especially since all 3 projects use scraps somewhere within them! I might have discovered another cool quilt block to use up scraps on her post for Tuesday.