Thursday, October 30, 2008

Fabric Paint on Applique Quilt

I finally finished removing all of the threads from the front of the fall wall quilt. It's so hard to pull brown threads through on dark fabric, they tend to disappear. Once I finally pulled all the thread through, I looked at all that I needed to finish on the applique'.

Then, I had a flashback to the 80's when we used to make sweatshirts with fabric applique on them and we would always seal the applique edges down with the fabric paint. I must have had a whole wardrobe of finished sweatshirts with fabric painted designs on them.

I then remembered that I recently purchased a bottle of the fabric paint in one of my craft magazine. Now, where could it be. Let me tell you, I found it in my 3 drawer I searched so I was very happy. I examined the color and it was called Diamond, it was sparkly. Yeah, I found my bling bling for this quilt. I tested it out and to me it had coppery flecks in the clear glue... I was sold.

For now, the only place I added it was on the highlights from the pumpkin. I've set it aside to dry for the day and will take another photo and look later. But from the early results, I just may adhere the leaves this way. Let me know what you think.... Improvement or Detraction? You'll need to click on the photos to see the better details.

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Monday, October 27, 2008

You're So Vein, You're So Vein...

I know, it's spelled V*a*i*n. However, in this case, I couldn't get the Carly Simon song out of my head as I was adding veins to the Fall Leaves on my Amish Pumpkin Wall Hanging. The first leaf I started sewing freehand without any lines to follow and it shows. It is the stiffest, straightest set of veins I have ever seen. Plus, I had to go back and forth probably 4 times to have them show up. After that one, I decided to pencil in the veins to look more natural and then I traced them with sewing on the lines. After the first leaf and after I sketched out some veins, it went faster. On the last two leaves at the top, I wised up and did a tiny satin stitch on the veins of both leaves. This time, I didn't need to go back and forth to thicken the lines.

I also added a slight shadowing on each section edge of the pumpkin with brown fabric marker. I still need to sew down all the leaves and the pumpkin and I'm leaning towards the invisible thread again. Since this has so many light colors, it should work well. Here's all the leaves with veins added.

Don't mind the mess of threads, I always leave a mess and then pull them through to the back using an easy threading needle. You know the kind that has an open top and you just pull the thread on the top to thread the needle. This works fast to pull all the threads to the back and then I knot and clip them. This is not the best photo but you can kinda see the veins sewn in.

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Saturday, October 25, 2008

Gift Bags Recycled into Christmas Cards

A friend of mine over-ordered Christmas gift bags from Oriental Trading. She was about to return the excess when I said, wait, I can use them. It would cost her more to return them then worth it. So, I inherited a bulk of Christmas Angel gift bags. I love making Christmas cards but I always look for the fastest way to get them done. It usually involves printing them out on the computer and adding embellishments. Here's what this year's card started out as.

I ended up ripping up the bag by hand because I like the torn paper look. The angel on the front came off quickly in one piece as anticipated. Then I figured I wanted to use the whole bag so I decided to add the red paper of the bag to the front, back and inside of the card. I'll only be showing the front for now. From here, I printed out the shell for our cards this year. I've blanked out our last name :-)

The easiest and fastest way for me to stick the card together was to use a stapler with the decorative staples. I have a long reach stapler from Memories Direct that worked just perfectly. Two staples and the front of the card is now ready.

Here's the finished card front. I added arrows to show you where the staples are. I should be able to finish these in an hour or two watching TV.

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Thursday, October 23, 2008

Fall Quilt Wall Hanging - Taking Shape

Fall Wall Hanging Taking Shape

I finished applying the fusible web to my fall colored fabrics. Then sat down for a night of House and Biggest Loser (courtesy of Tivo of course) and began cutting, cutting, cutting. When the programs were done so was my big job of cutting. It made it go so fast.

Yesterday, I arranged the leaves and pumpkin on their blender black background until I had what I think will work. Several of the fabrics are so similar in color that they tend to blend together. But, once I sew the edges down and add the center veins, I think it will separate the colors better. To seal down the applique, I use one of those Pressing Sheets that seem like they are Teflon. Nothing sticks to them and they seal the applique very nicely. Here's a link to the one I use. Of course, best when purchased with a coupon.

Vacation Winding Down

As my vacation is winding down, we just returned from a visit to Pittsburgh to visit with family. The fall colors on the Pennsylvania turnpike were just beautiful. We found ourselves taking photos along the way. At one point, we even pulled over (with the zoo in tact since all animals went to pgh as well) to take photos. I have to say that we have been very lucky these vacation days regarding the weather we have been having. It's starting to turn cold now. Here are a few of my favorite photos from our pgh trip and one close to our home.

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Monday, October 20, 2008

Fall Quilt - Folded Star Ornament II

Folded Star Ornament Twist

** See more Folded Star Posts and instructions by clicking on the "folded star" label on the right side of this blog ***

I'm still fascinated with the folded star ornament and wanted to try something. I printed out photos of my dogs and my great niece (wow, great niece makes me sound old). Then, I just stated folding and adding the triangles to the photos in a star patterns. I tried two different star patterns on the one ornament

It was tough because you didn't have that starting point in the middle. I definitely want to make the photos smaller next time and try again. However, I thought you might like to see my experiment.

Fall Quilt - Cut Outs Completed

Why do applique's have to be so intricate :-) I can see I'm going to have fun sewing down the leaves of this Amish Pumpkin fall wall hanging. There are so many twists and turns. If anyone has a good suggestion on how to quickly sew down this type of applique, please let me know.

I also completed the pumpkin template cut out and the background piece is set. For the background, I chose a black blender fabric. I think it will contrast nicely with all the fall colors. I also chose the background fabric. It's a brown orange tie die like batik.

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Saturday, October 18, 2008

Tracing, Teddy Bears & Being Tagged

Tracing Completed

Yesterday, I returned to my natural light box (back door) and began my tracings of the applique pieces to the "Amish Pumpkin" fall wall hanging next in line to completed. It was a little complicated since the pattern was on both sides of the paper. I'm all for saving paper, but, maybe they could have used a thicker sheet so the pattern from the back didn't shine through.

Teddy Bears in the Country - Boyds Bear Country

Tuesday, we went to Gettysburg, PA. I wanted to go to the town square, the outlets, a quilt shop and oh OK, I'll stop by the Boyds Bear Country shop. We were under a time limit since hubby needed to be home in time to go to a concert he surprised his mom with tickets. So, lots to do in limited time.

First stop, Boyds Bear Country. It's a couple miles off route 15. It was the most beautiful location for Fall colors I have seen yet. Not to mention, they say the worlds largest teddy bear shop. It was unbelievable. Just fun and beautiful. 3 floors of collectibles and bears. I walked out with a bear for mom (who we will be visiting this weekend) and a small bear for our home. Here are our favorite photos. They don't do the place justice. Click on them for a better view.

Then on to Gettysburg to walk around town. We took our time and walked all around the square to the shops. Here are two photos from the town. We'll go back to do some tours. I saw one for a ghost tour of Gettysburg, sounded interesting.

By this time we were limited on time. Last stops, quilt shop or outlets to buy hubby a new pair of sneakers. Sad to say, the outlet won out. Thanks for the quilt shop name Michelle, I'll get there someday. So, off to the outlets for a nice walk and shopping. Hubby got the sneakers he wanted and we got home in time for him to pick up his mom (& dad too) to make it to Hershey, PA for the concert.

Being Tagged

I received an email from Valerie from Life's Little Garden blog that I've been tagged. Hmm, what's this, I've never been tagged before. The rules state to share 7 random and or weird facts about yourself and then to tag 7 people. OK, here goes....

1. I live in a Zoo - I live with two spoiled female Yorkshire terriers, An African Grey Parrot, and a Parrotlett bird. Oh yeah, don't forget hubby :-)

2. Met hubby on a blind Date - Yep, they work. We got engaged 3 months later and married 8 months after we met. 17 years later, I'm still crazy about him. Then, the girl that introduced us married my husband's twin... hmmm

3. I'm an early bird- I like to get up early so that I can read the news on the Internet and review blogs before I start work. When I say early, I mean 4:00 am. Gives me enough time to putz around before having to get to work.

4. I'm a Craft Supply Shopaholic - There, I said it. It's the first step towards recovery I hear.

5. I'll be working the rest of my life - After being on vacation and being able to spend time looking at my 401k, I've come the realization that with today's economy and stock market drop as reflected in my 401k... I'll probably be working for the rest of my life. :-(

6. I love anything wing related - I obviously like butterflies but I also like Pegasus, angels, fairies...etc... you get the picture.

7. Internet junkie - I love the Internet! I love having my own library at the tip of my fingers. I could spend hours learning new things.

Here are the blogs that I like to read (OK just some of them) and who I'll be sending the tag to via emails.

Brown Dirt Cottage
Gettysburg Quilter
Patchmaker Quilts
Shelly's Quilting Blog
Sew Behind
TLC Stitches

Thanks for stopping by


Thursday, October 16, 2008

Folded Star Ornament

I was determined to find the pattern for the folded star. It's been pretty tough and I'm pretty good at finding things on the Internet since I work on computers all day long. I'm still looking for a better example of the folded square block for a wall hanging but I did find an example for an ornament. After I could not stop last night until I finished the ornament, I know I'll be able to do the block.

I know black and purple were not the best fabrics to use as an example but since it called for 2.5" squares, I cut up some excess binding I had and re-ironed it since it was already 2.5" wide.

I see lots of ornaments in my future. I'm going to make these for friends for little knick knack gifts for the holidays this year. Let me tell you, it uses A LOT of pins. I want to guesstimate I used about 250+ Here are some photos of the steps along the way.

Fabric Pieces are 2.5" squares folded in half and then sides folded down to form a triangle.

I finished with one side first.

Then the other and the two sides should meet somewhat closely in the middle. Good photo with pins.

It calls for ribbon to be wrapped about the sides to hid the visible pins but I used matching purple fabric. I folded a 2.5" strip in half, right sides together and then sewed a seam. Then I turned it inside out and wrapped it around the ornament and secured with double sided tape.

I added sheer ribbon on the top in a loop to fashion the hanger for the ornament. This has a lot of flexibility here so I'll probably be experimenting with the hangers.

Well for my first try at the folded star, I'm pretty happy with the results. Right now the loop top is pinned, but I'll sew or tape it closed and turn it so the connection is under the loop on the top of the ornament.folded star ornament

There are places I could have been more careful about the distance I placed the next layer and I see a few pins here and there since I did not fold my triangles and press tightly. But, I wish I would have found this sooner, I'll be making these for a while. Let me know what you think :-)

P.s. I see lots of "bling" in their future too! Rhinestones and fabric paint...

Thanks for stopping by


Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Lancaster County Visit, Amish Quilt & Shop till you drop

Yesterday, we took a day trip to Lancaster County, PA. On the agenda, I wanted to go to the Rockvale Outlets (but only one store) QVC Outlet, Kitchen Kettle Village , Shady Maple Smorgasborg (for the hubby of course) and finally the Flower and Craft Warehouse. It is only about 45 miles from our home and it was a beautiful drive. Here are some overall Lancaster photos, not many.

QVC Outlet

This is one of my favorite outlet stores. Sometimes, I'll go to Lancaster just to go to this store. It is located in the Rockvale Outlets complex. Did you ever wonder what happens to the stuff you return to QVC. It appears in the Outlet stores. This place has so much jammed into the store that it's like a treasure hunt around every corner. I picked out a few things because I saw 30% off prices signs. Went to the register and of course only one thing was on sale. The 30% signs were from a sale that ended the day before. I said No thank you, the only thing I want are the candles that are 30% off. Sorry, I only buy things on sale :-) The sales lady was none too happy. O-well.

Kitchen Kettle Village

What a great little place to visit! It has several small shops in the village and usually a live band of some sort playing in the center. It was a perfect day weather wise. Outside the village are several quilt shops that are just amazing to visit. I purchased only 1 yard of fabric that I did not need. I purchased new orange/yellow fabric for my fall quilt wall hanging! Now I can call my wall hanging the "Amish Pumpkin" quilt. :-)

Shady Maple Smorgasbord

This buffet is huge. Hubby has been here before but I have not. Oh my goodness, that's a huge buffet. I'm not a big buffet person,. I can make once maybe twice to the line and I'm done. Hubby can go up 4-5 times plus dessert. Ugh. This place is just an experience. After your meal, they have the biggest gift shop located below the buffet. This is for all us women that leave our husbands at the buffet :-)

Amish Quilt Purchase

Here is where I got a close up of a star quilt I saw a couple times in the other quilt shops but was not able to get close to it. I was told this is called the folded star block. I absolutely love this block. I am determined to make it. I really liked this quilt and decided to invest in it to try and figure out how it is done. OK, so the quilt is only potholder size. :-)

Flower and Craft Warehouse

I had every intention of going to the Flower and Craft Warehouse to look at scrapbooking supplies. By the end of shopping in the HUGE gift shop under the smorgasbord, I was done shopping. We bypassed the warehouse to return home for a relaxing vacation nap.

Thanks for stopping by


Monday, October 13, 2008

Fall Fabrics, Mock Needle Turn & Shipping Protector

Mock Needle Turn

I packaged up my friend's quilt this morning for shipping after I finished the binding and added a custom label. For the label, I'm just not skilled enough (or have the patience enough :-) ) to needle turn an applique or quilt label. Therefore, I decided to add a seam allowance to the label and then I ironed a quarter inch fold back and then used fusible webbing to keep it adhered to the back. then I placed fusible webbing over the whole label and ironed on to the quilt.

Since the edges really don't adhere down no matter how hard you try, I complete the normal invisible stitch to secure the label down. Since the edges are already turned under, it goes pretty fast. Here's the fusible webbing for the last side to be turned back. I've blurred the personal part of my friends label.

Protecting the Quilt in transit - Shipping Bag

Everyone probably already knows this tip.. but.. When I ship a quilt to someone, I usually place it in a grocery or kitchen plastic bag (just for transit time) to protect in case the box gets wet. I remembered Zip-Lock had larger bags and I picked up the following Large bags yesterday at the grocery store. They worked perfectly!

Of course though, I forgot to take photos of the finished quilt and the bag before I sealed up the box. I hate when I do that :-) This size bag worked perfectly for my lap size quilt. It was only about $1 a bag which is well worth the protection in transit. The also have a box of XL bags that will work well with the larger size quilts.

Fall Fabrics Selected for Wall hanging

Yesterday I spent the evening going through my stash looking for fabrics I can use in the fall wall hanging I want to start. I never realized (as most of us stash builder don't) how many fall color fabrics I have. Although, pumpkin color eluded me. So, here's what I'm thinking for now for the wall hanging pattern in the photo as well. Before I start, they'll probably be a few color changes. I want my leaves to have some of the wine colors I love so much in the fall leaves I'm seeing now.

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Sunday, October 12, 2008

Finishing a UFO, the Catoctin Colorfest, & our Flea Market

Western Star UFO Quilt

At about the same time I sent off my Oopsy Daisy Quilt I also sent off an unfinished top (UFO) to another quilter to be finished. It arrived yesterday. I was happy with the results since I basically picked out the quilting design and let the quilter pick the thread. This one was in my stash just waiting for a creative idea to quilt it. They used black batting on this one so you really can't see where the edge of the quilt is in the photos.

It is made out of country western shirt fabric to make the stars and random blue backing. They used a variegated multicolor thread that picked up all the colors of the stars and softened the quilt top nicely. You'll probably need to click on the photo to get a better picture.

Catoctin Colorfest (October 11 & 12, 2008)

It was such a beautiful day yesterday to attend the Catoctin Colorfest. It was my first time there. They were supposed to have over 350 juried artists and boy did they deliver. I think based on the pedometer yesterday registering 12,000+ steps you can guess how big it was. We ended up buying a beautiful handmade bird hotel and a of course something butterfly... A purple sun catcher. Here were two photos I wanted to share... There were from the booths in the community park. Can you imagine if you were separated from your group? Again, click on the photos to see the large view and see the people.
Also, where do you park all the cars for all those people? Well, they had parking and shuttle service but a lot (including us) park on the side of the on and off rams to the two exits to Thurmont. This photo does not do it justice on how many cars the eyes could see.

Our Local Fleamarket

Our local fleamarket is partially house in a closed down amusement park called Williams Grove Park. It is next to the Williams Grove Speedway. It really is a great place to walk around on a crisp fall morning. The vendors are scattered around all the abandoned rides. There is a second part to the flea marked which has the standard rows of tables.

The park has several buildings and the previous owner's home is in the park as well. All this along with the swans that have chosen the park lake as their home. I just wanted to share a few scenery photos from there. I didn't want to take photos of the ride areas since vendors were already setup.

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