Thursday, August 27, 2015

A little sewing to make a big lion

Jungle Abstraction - the Lion

Besides unpacking and a quick trip this week, I have been working on my lion quilt. The pattern is one of Violet Craft's Jungle Abstraction patterns, and will finish at 60" square. There are 4 big chunks in that photo that are not yet pieced together. I think I will skip ahead to do his eyes next.

I have an overdue bee block and a round robin block to do but after unpacking and settling in each day - there is so much more unpacking to do still - I have no energy for being creative and original. I am loving Violet's pattern - it is so easy to follow and it is dramatic and large - perfect for now when I want to sew but need someone else to have done the heavy lifting on the creative side of things.

I am hoping to have some creative energy this weekend and will get my internet sewing homework caught up then I hope.

I hope you are enjoying your week.



Saturday, August 22, 2015

if you were shopping... #44

Welcome to if you're shopping.... On Fridays, sometimes Saturdays like today,  I share news from my sponsors, in case you want to do a little shopping, or even window shopping, this weekend

Fluffy Sheep Quilting has lovely summer fabrics, including Mixed Bag by Studio M.

The deal of the month at Sew Sisters Quilt Shop is Wonder Clips!

If you want a little of many fabrics - say for a scrappy quilt or pillow, Becca from Sew Me a Song is making the most fantasic bundles, including this Colour me Blue fat 16th bundle.

The Fat Quarter Shop has exclusive 12 wt Aurifil thread sets (10 spools of 54 yards each), perfect for hand quilting. This is the Macaroon Finishing Set.

Congratulations to Green Fairy Quilts for 7 years in business. They are sharing the party, use discount code 7YEARS for great discounts!

Mad about Patchwork has extended their summer sale to the end of the month! Use the coupon code HEATWAVE for 20% off selected fabrics, click here. This sale has fabrics from Kate Spain, Carolyn Friedlander, Cotton + Steel and others.
The Autumn colours at Oakshott Fabrics are beautiful, check out the project links on the Oakshott Shotthrough Blog.

Fabric Spark has more new fabrics, including Heavy Metals from Windham Fabrics.

More unpacking today, and a bit of cleaning too, but the sun is shining and it is not too hot, so off I go. Enjoy your day!



Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Action Kivu

My friend Alissa Haight Carlton sent a note to remind me that it is time for the sixth annual Action Kivu fundraiser again. I have supported this initiative from the time I heard about it.

Here are Alissa's words:

"Action Kivu helps women and children who are victims of the conflict in Eastern Congo. The conflict in Congo has taken the lives of over 5.4 million people since 1998. Rape is used as a weapon of war, with estimates putting the number of rapes in the hundreds of thousands.  These are horrible statistics but together, year after year now, we have made a real difference for specific women and children. Here are the stories of just a few. Every year there are more women entering Action Kivu’s programs and more children going to school.  We are having a lasting impact on these women and children, so let’s keep helping!

One of the wonderful things that Action Kivu helps finance is a sewing workshop that teaches women to sew. When these women graduate from the workshop, they are given a sewing machine and therefore the means to support themselves and their families.You can see a short video of the most recent graduates of the sewing program here. This workshop changes their lives in amazing ways and it is your generosity that makes that possible!

These women’s lives and families have been transformed by this workshop and it is these dollars, that we raise here, that have helped make that happen.  Our online sewing community is linked to these women, and we can help more of them. Please give today!

The American staff of Action Kivu is 100% volunteer, so all of your donations, minus nominal banking fees, go directly to the work on the ground, empowering and educating the women and children of eastern Congo.

This year we’re also going to focus on spreading the word about the fundraiser via social media more! Let’s get these hashtags busy: #akfundraiser #sewing #congo #actionkivu "

Giving is very personal. If you have a space in your budget for international support, I think this is a great initiative and I have already donated. 

Alissa has sweetened the deal with some great randomly drawn prizes (Jacquie Gehring has donated her Featherweight as a prize!!! for exmaple) so head over to Alissa's blog - Alissa Haight Carlton Modern Quilts - to check them out and to donate to this important cause.



Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Scraptastic Tuesday - making new scraps and August link winners

Scraptastic Tuesday

Thank you to everyone who joined in with the August Scraptastic Tuesday link up hosted by Nicky - Mrs. Sew and Sow and me. I have been slowly visiting all the links and there are some beautiful and inspiring projects being shared, so I hope you will take some time to check them out too (go here for the link up post on my blog or here for the link up post on Nicky's blog).

By the way, if you linked up and did not include our button, hashtag (#scraptastictuesday) or at least a link back to one of the link up posts, please add it in as we are sure that you want to support our efforts to bring you this fun link and great prizes.

Paper piecing in progress

My first chance to sew on my machine since last Tuesday was last night. I spent my time working on the Jungle Abstractions Lion quilt. The paper pieced pattern is by Violet Craft, and will make a 60" square lion head. It is a lovely pattern to work with as Violet coded each fabric on the pattern pieces. I have finished piece #12 and I think that there are about 130 or so pieces, so I have a ways to go.

Paper piecing

The thing is that I bought the yardage you see in the top left of the photograph to make this quilt. But the paper piecing, at least my method, creates a lot of scraps. I use those scraps for the next bits but there are going to be a lot left over.

Paper piecing

I did toss the smallest pieces in my garbage bin. However, this morning I am thinking that I could use them, I know my friend Stephanie (Spontaneous Threads) would be making something fantastic with them and maybe I should too. You know, for the lion quilt's back. You can see how another scraptastic project is born, just like that.

Butch, my quilting cat

Last night my cat Butch (he is a year old at the end of August so no longer a kitten) was my constant companion. He was very protective of the yardage pile and urged me to stick to the little bits on my side of the mat.

Now, its time randomly award the prizes from our generous sponsors to those who linked up for August. 

A huge thank you to our generous sponsors! Here are the prizes and the winners, as picked by the Random Number Generator:

I'll be emailing the winners over the day, watch your inbox.

Please plan to join Nicky from Mrs. Sew and Sow and I for the September Scraptastic Link up on the second Tuesday - September 8.



Saturday, August 15, 2015

Saturday - unpacking the sewing room update

unpacking the sewing room

I arrived after the movers had unloaded the boxes - having stayed behind to supervise the load up of the truck. This was the view of my sewing room from the end by the door. Now if you know about my long arm machine, you will be thinking, great, she kept the box and yikes it is not set upright. I did fix that right away, and the machine is fairly well packed in the box anyway.

unpacking the sewing room

This is looking the other way on the first day. Also, there are not great photos, having been taken with my iphone and then not edited one bit. Editing does not really assist, the situation was dismal.

unpacking the sewing room

The first step was to sort the boxes some and start unpacking the fabric.

unpacking the sewing room

That progressed well, but the boxes stacked where the long arm was to go were just sitting there.

Sewing room - unpacking

As I find more fabric tucked here and there, I have been adding it to the rainbow shelves. The fabric in the open shelves will, hopefully be sorted and put in a shelf with a door in the end.

unpacking the sewing room

This was my view this morning, from my sewing machine. It being Saturday, that meant that is was a day off, and thus could be a day devoted to just unpacking my stuff. I know the logic has many flaws but I spent the day in this room. The other deciding factor was that the temperature did a nose dive and it was cool all day.

unpacking the sewing room

And that is basically how I left the room. I unpacked all the boxes in the middle of the room and about 8 or so that had been stacked by the sewing machine at the big window (see the third photo from the top). My old sewing spaces were sewing, knitting, crafting, office stuff and the family photo sort project. So I had to figure out where to tuck all those bits away.

unpacking the sewing room

As you can see from this angle, there is still a lot of tucking away to do. I have to get some project sized bins I think. But there are empty shelves still too, so it is a matter of sorting and organizing.

unpacking the sewing room

Tomorrow my DH is here and he will help me put the long arm together in that empty space. There are still a number of boxes lining the wall to the right in that photo and when they are empty one more shelf can go there if needed - and if so I'm going to have to make a portable design wall. Oh and I have to do something about those old curtains, and bring up my other cutting table, and there may be another 5 small boxes of bits in the living room - there is still lots to do.

In the end I am going to fill up this new large space, but it will mean that all my sewing, knitting, crafting, photo, etc. stuff is together and handy. It will be great.

In the meantime, Nicky from Mrs. Sew and Sow and I have been checking out the scrappy projects linked up at the August Scraptastic Tuesday Link up.  If you have not linked up a scrappy project - in progress or finished - or your thoughts on taming your scrap mountain this month (one link per person), please do so as we have wonderful prizes to award randomly to those link - go here.