Thursday, June 26, 2008

Making a Rag Quilt - Part 2 Block Sandwiches

This is definitely a boring step in the process of creating a rag quilt. I think the hardest part is already over, getting all the blocks and batting cut to size. A word about the batting, you'll want to cut the batting squares at least 3/4 inch smaller than your blocks all the way around.

Now it's time to lay out all the blocks and pick up two at a time. Open each block and place your batting square within it. Lay the original fabric block (right sides facing outside) on top of the batting and wha la, you have a Rag Quilt block sandwich. Now repeat, repeat, repeat. In my case, that's 144 more times. Here's an example of the Rag Quilt block sandwich.

As I finish each sandwich, I turn it a quarter to make it easier to pickup each sandwich square when I'm ready to quilt them prior to arranging the layout. The sewing is a weekend project since I'll have more time. ~*~ Trish ~*~

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Making a Rag Quilt - Part 1 Fabric Squares

There's just something about a heavy flannel blanket to snuggle under for nap time. Rag Quilts make great quilts for gift giving as well. They are usually pretty quick to make but, can take some time based upon the size. In the end, they are so worth it. Most fabrics that I've worked with on my Rag Quilts are flannel. However, I've also completed a rag quilt out of denim and one out of fleece. The denim quilt is in the slideshow to the right.

Normally, I use large blocks 8-9.5 inches in my rag quilts. It cuts down on the all the seam snipping you need to complete and allows me to add a quilt design to each block if I wanted to. This time I'm going with 6" squares. I've had the fabric for a while, it was just in the pile of things to do. This one is using teddy bear and snowflakes and similar solids. I guess I'm complete an early Christmas gift for someone.

Hopefully, I'll be completed by the end of the weekend! Here's the fabrics all cut out. Now it's just time to place the batting squares between all these squares to prepare the for the criss-cross quilting. A couple of my other larger block quilts, I added quilt designs to each block, in my next segment, I'll share a few pictures. But, for now, here's the finished cut blocks.

~*~ Trish ~*~

Monday, June 23, 2008

A card to say Thank you

Today, I wanted to create a thank you card. I could very easily have pulled one of my premades purchased from QVC, but I had an idea in mind. However, I just love the ones that look homemade that you buy in kits, can't beat them for the price.

I picked out the base blank card. I found the perfect shade of background cardstock from my DCWV Metallic Stack, I chose a shade of rose. I pulled out my very favorite brads which are the tiny rhinestones. Found my paper flowers stash and chose the three tiny tiny pastel flowers. I punched the 3 holes in the top center of the metallic cardstock. Pinned the flowers to the rose cardstock with the rhinestone brads. I then found a Vellum "Thank you" saying on and added it to the bottom right.

So, I had 3 flowers center high and the "Thank you" on the lower right. Looks good. Got out my favorite double sided tape (Google - Red Line Doublestick tape) and adhered the cardstock carefully to the base card being sure to center it just right. Stepped back and smiled, looked good to me. Went to open the card and then realized, I adhered it upside down on the card!!! duh...

I was able to save the card by carefully, carefully, peeling of the vellum "thank you" saying off the card and turning the card around the right way and placed it in the correct bottom right. Problem was, now I had all this open space on the top above the flowers. Thus, the flight of the butterfly.

I love bling. I buy lots of bling embellishments, they are just so much fun. Let me know what you think. ~*~Trish~*~

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Quick Tips - Photoshop Elements - Magic Eraser

When you have an object photo (or person photo) that you would like to use in another photo as a layer, most times you will need to remove the background of the photo first. When the background is removed, and it becomes transparent, you can easily layer your photos to create a photo collage.

The quickest and easiest way I have found to remove the background is to use the “magic eraser” within Photoshop Elements. Once selected, just click on the area you want to remove.

You will need to experiment with the available magic eraser settings options.

  • Tolerance - higher tolerance means broader range of similar colors the magic eraser will pick up.
  • Anti-Alias – if checked then the edges erased will be smoother
  • Contiguous - unchecked, it will take all matching colored pixels including the part you want to keep. Checked, it stays within pixels touching the area you touched.
  • All layers – all layers or just the layer that is currently active.
  • Opacity - The higher the opacity, the cleaner the erased area will be.

    ~*~ Trish ~*~


Friday, June 20, 2008

Photoshop my way to a new graphical heading

They say change is constant and I for one am happy about that. It goes hand in hand with the way my mind works. After reviewing the blog, I thought that I would like to use a fancy header like some of the others I have seen. I started using my Adobe Photoshop Elements 5.0 (haven't upgraded to the newest version yet) and started layering, cropping, cleaning and arranging all things crafty. I have two versions of the new header above. One larger than the other so I might be exchanging them here and there.

Throw in a few magical image filters and I've finally reached a place in which I'm pleased with the outcome. Although, I currently have a 22" monitor and it bugs me that the image is centered with white space on the sides. But, this is necessary so that the blog (with image header) can fit on all different sizes of monitors, I guess I will leave it as is.
~*~ Trish ~*~

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Stainglass Quilt

Hello, I can't believe that I am 99.5% complete (still have to complete the required label) with my very first stain glass quilt wall hanging. It turned out better than I expected. The only pain was quilting down the leading on both sides of the 1/4 inch black leading fabric. Second least favorite was passing all the loose ends to the back, tying them off and then hiding the ends. I had so many to do.

From there, it was squaring up and binding time. Luckily I had just enough (only 3" to spare) of same black fabric available to create the binding and stitch it to the quilt. I hand finished the binding by turning and sewing it to the back of the wallhanging. Of course, there are multiple places of sewing "boo boos" on the back. But, hey, who's going to see. So here is a photo of the back of the wall hanging once the quilting, knotting, and binding the wallhanging.

Finally, when that last stitch is in place, it's time to turn it over and critique your own work. This time I actually have to say, not that bad. However, it did hit me that no matter how I looked at this wall hanging, it displayed the same. So, I decided that I am not going to hang it in the usual fashion with the hanging pocket on the back and hanging it square. I've decided that I'm going to hang it on point with a simple loop on the top. Let me know what you think. Now the question is, what to do with it? Trish

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Adding the slideshow


Just thought I'd log on and reconfigure a few things. I added a slideshow using picasa web album. It was a little tricky. Seems to be that things don't update right away on picasa once you add photos to the slideshow. So, I removed my photobook and started again. I also added a small profile, not much but enough.

Later this evening I think I'm going to start on sewing the lead on the stain glass quilt finished this weekend. I just read where they recommend sewing the black fabric lead lines down. Silly me thought I ironed them down just right and I was finished. Not....

I'll let you know how I made out on those. I bet they are going to be "fun". Escpecially since they recommend sewing down both outsides of of the lines. Thanks for stopping by.


Sunday, June 15, 2008

Back in the sew of things......

We'll I've been wanting to start a blog for a while but haven't found the right angle just yet. I figured that I'm always crafting and why not write about things you like to do. Primarily, I love to sew quilts and wall hangings. If I'm not actively sewing or crafting then I'm off searching the internet for some new craft out there.

It was so great this weekend to get back into sewing after a couple of weeks off. I've always been fascinated with the "stain glass" quilts. I think they are beautiful.

Here's my first try at stain glass piecing. I just completed the top today. I started it yesterday. I wished I had photographed each of the steps for you but, I promise I'll do better next time. Let me know what you think of the wall hanging quilt top.

I was also able to make the wall hanging quilt sandwhich with the backing and the batting. Next came the pinning pinning pinning in the bottom photo. It's hard to see all of the pins but they are there just waiting for a fresh blood vessel to attach to.

This is the step I like the least. However, this time it was not that bad since the wall hanging is about 24" square which is pretty manageable. I think sometime this next week I'll work on the quilting over the lead lines. Better wear my quilting gloves because it never fails that I don't prick myself when I'm using pins to hold the quilt sandwhich together. Talk to you later - Trish