Sunday, November 28, 2021

Where, Oh Where, Did The Past Week Go?

Last Sunday I was all excited to start binding Little Trees after picking it up from Roberta but somehow my week conspired to have me doing everything but. Finally, last night I got to cutting and machine sewing it down so today I'm looking forward to lots of hand stitching.

I thought that I was going to use the light blue with red berries and I had toyed with using as a narrow border, but when it came time to cut I just wasn't convinced. It was okay, but somehow a little flat.

Then I thought I'd just use the green in the outer border, but it was tough to get a good cut, either on the bias or with the straight of grain. It just felt that introducing another colour would give it a nice pop.

So I went back to the pink gingham with the polka dots that I had purchased when I bought the border and backing fabrics; it seemed to pick both of them up, and there's just enough red in the dots to make it work with the reds in the trees and the snowman toques. It also adds a nice little touch of whimsy.

As you know, I'm a sucker for gingham on the bias so it didn't take much to convince me.

One side is hand sewn now so if I get into a good football game this afternoon there's a chance that it could all be finished up today, which would be terrific....M

Sunday, November 21, 2021

Baking Day and Itchy Fingers

I spent yesterday in the kitchen prepping all of the items that I had promised for the bake table at the Holly Bazaar. The Official Cookie Tester was on duty as well, ensuring that the Toblerone Shortbread was up to snuff and, while he was at it, sampling a few other wares as well. As of last night everything was baked, packaged and labelled and the house smelled of chocolate, butter and cinnamon. A nice way to fall asleep.

So with that behind me, it's back to quilting (I'm missing making and sewing down bindings so my fingers are getting itchy to do some hand sewing 😉). I dropped the flimsy for Little Trees off for quilting a little while ago and picked it up today from Roberta, so problem solved. It. Is. Just. Adorable! 

After adding in a white-on-white border with a wintery swirl around all of the trees I debated including a very narrow blue border.

In the end I opted to just use the wide green border - it kept things open and airy and let the little snowflakes in the print shine. When I saw the quilted finish I knew that it was the right decision. 

I was really keen to get it trimmed up and binding made today but I had a few errands to run and chores to do, so it will have to wait until tomorrow, but I am SO looking forward to having that handwork on my list of things to do. Have I mentioned that it's adorable?....M

Saturday, November 13, 2021

So Happy With My Poinsettia Runner

By and large, I'm happy with all of the items that I've made for the Holly Bazaar this year, but I think I have to say that this Poinsettia table runner is my fave.

I shared the making of it with you a couple of weeks ago, but now that it's quilted...oh my!

Roberta sprinkled gorgeous swirling snowflakes across it and I don't think that it could have been a better choice. 

They soften it up beautifully in a wintery kind of way and really help make the whole thing shine. 

I chose a bright red and white print for the binding - didn't want anything too heavy, but something that would help provide a bit of a snowy feel - and I like the end result.

The light backing has a gold swirl running through it and it is quilted with the perfect cream thread, just dark enough to highlight the quilting but not overtake the piece.

This is the the largest of all of the items, finishing at about 17" x 44", which will make for a impressive statement on the table. Happy, happy, happy!

And speaking of happy, thank you for all of the wonderful comments about my 10th blogging anniversary last weekend. For some reason I'm experiencing a glitch with Blogger and have not been receiving all of my comments via email; it seems to be hit and miss. Nor can I reply to them, but please know that I've seen them all and appreciate all of your kind words. 

And a quick reminder that there is only one day left for you to claim your gift and get 20% off the hexie Christmas ornaments; just use the discount code QUILTBEEHEXIE when you check out. All the fun ends Sunday night!....M

Monday, November 08, 2021

Two Christmas Starlight Table Toppers

Lately it feels like if it's not nailed down I'm binding it, but that's also a sign that more items for the Holly Bazaar are being added to the finished pile, and that's a good thing. Case in point, two new star table toppers. I saw the inspiration on Pinterest and am not certain what they were called, so I'm calling them Christmas Starlight.

They are a simplified version of the star toppers that I have made in the past, made with one star and a border of blocks rather than nine stars. I seem to have a never-ending stack of 3.5" blocks of Christmas prints lying around so they required minimal cutting and came together very quickly. Bonus! I'm loving the centre gingham on this one.

They are very similar but one is made with a white-on-white background and the other with a cream. 

Both are backed with the same cheery red and Roberta quilted them with the Jingle Bells panto. It is just so perfect for them, setting off the scrappy mix of prints.

There also seems to be an ever-growing stash of bindings/binding strips lurking around so I was able to use this green holly and a red and white polka dot to finish them off. 

It wasn't until after I had the green machine stitched down that I remembered that it was a little narrower than usual (I usually cut a 2" binding and this seemed to be about .25" narrower). It made for a bit of a snugger fit as I was doing the hand stitching, but it still looked nice and worked well with the cream background. 
Part of the charm of using a collection of different prints is having so much fun looking at the variety. This creamy holly is one print that I wish I still had more of. Not that I need more fabric in my stash....M

Saturday, November 06, 2021

Celebrate With Me!

I passed a blogging milestone lately and wouldn't you know, I completely missed it! Ten years ago (ten!) I took the plunge and started my blog. QuiltBee became a thing. Never would I have imagined the impact this would have on my creative journey. It's been a wonderful way to keep me focused and move lots of projects to the finish line, but, more importantly, it introduced me to an amazing array of inspiring quilters from across the world, including you. 

Your support has meant so much and I always look forward to reading your comments. You cheer me on when I need a lift, willingly sharing great suggestions and insights. I feel blessed that I've gotten to know you through our shared passion. So, despite being a little late to my own party, we're going to celebrate this week with a little treat. 

It's no secret that I am drawn to hexies - Candied Hexagons and Minnie come to mind - and I know I'm not alone. 

My sister Frances also has a blog with a bit of a bee theme called L'Abeille Francaise, devoted to all things French, especially Paris and her travels to explore its architectural, cultural and gastronomic charms; you may have noticed it in my blog list. Just like L’Abeille - the bee - she loves buzzing around, seeking them out and sampling them. So when she recently introduced a line of lovely hexie Christmas ornaments (she calls them honeycombs) it seemed to me like a fun opportunity to collaborate. 

As a thank you for sharing these past ten years with me I have a little gift for you. It will soon be time to deck the halls so for the next week (from November 6 thru to the 15th) enjoy a special 20% discount on her line of Honeycomb Ornaments; just use the discount code QUILTBEEHEXIE when you check out. 

There are three different styles to choose from - Noël, Joie and Paix - and they are available in either gold or black. They look lovely on a tree or tucked into a stocking, adding a certain 'je ne sais quoi' to your holidays. Feel free to share this offer with any of your quilty friends who have caught the hexie bug too. 

Thanks again for sharing this journey with me. I know that many blogs are being replaced by Instagram but I'm still enjoying this format and your company, and hope to for some time to come.....M

Monday, November 01, 2021

Fun With Farmyard Friends

I've got a second set of placemats together for the bazaar and they are just fun. 

While digging for a red fabric for something else, I came across a piece of this novelty print with cows, chickens, sheep and pigs all scattered across a cheery red background and decided that they would be perfect for someone's kitchen.

I've made placemats with a string of geese before and it seemed like a good format. Initially, I had planned to make all of the geese identical, but I'm glad that I went with several gold prints - just adds that much more interest. And, since I make four at a time, it really didn't take that long at all.
Randomly placed straight line quilting also seemed like a good idea.
I found an even smaller piece of this red accent piece to place to the left of the geese (might have bought this from Linda when she was purging her stash a couple of years ago). It's gorgeous - reminds me of a farmer's hankie. Wish there was more of it.
Creamy stars finish off the backs.

As seems to be the way around here, the Official Cookie Tester took a shine to them. It looks like there's enough of the red animal print left to make a pair for us, though I'm not certain that I have enough of the red accent fabric. Either way, after the dust from the bazaar settles I think I'll do that....M