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Monday, November 24, 2008

Finally Finished with my Rosette Valances

I have been consumed with rosettes since I saw them on Sparkle Jars blog.
I was just finishing making valances for four windows and I needed something to embellish them.

The rosettes worked great.

I put little mirrors in the centers of the kitchen valances.

I ran out of mirrors so I left the family room rosettes plain.

I may add something to them later, but for now I like them just fine.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Which Blog Should I Post to?

It's been a while since I posted here because I haven't done any new quilting projects. I am still working on machine quilting the pink star quilt. It's getting less frustrating, but I find it pretty boring so I don't do it for very long.

Today I was pretty consumed with a different sewing project. I posted about it on one of my other blogs. You can read about it by clicking here if you want to.

It's gets complicated trying to keep three blogs going. Sometimes the posts overlap and I have to decide where to post them.

I just wanted to pop in to let any regular followers know where I have been. I know there aren't many regulars, but I still like post every couple of days.

Happy quilting,

Monday, November 10, 2008

Cardinal Quilt Block

Two weeks ago I spotted this fabric in the new Christmas fabric section.

I immediately had an idea for its use, which had nothing to do with Christmas.

When I got home from work this afternoon, I decided to make one test block with the cardinal fabric. Sometimes I just need to create something new. It will do me good to get my mind off the machine quilting (although it does seem to be going slightly better and I will probably do a bit more on the pink star later tonight.)

What I did with the cardinal fabric was fussy cut a bird and use it as the center for this star:

I will show you what I do with it, when I decide what to do with it! At the moment I am content just to know it does make a nice center.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

I'm trying to Learn to Love it...

but this machine quilting is taking a lot of time to wiggle its way into my warm embraces.

I had started to hand quilt my pink star. I did one small area and it sat for a couple of weeks. Friday night I picked it up to work on it. The thought of spending months quilting it didn't seem so appealing, so I decided to make my first big attempt at machine quilting. I've had this machine since Feb. and if I am ever going to get good at it, I need to start now.

I am really appreciating the 10" extended sewing surface. There is no way I could have gotten all this fabric through on my old machine.

With just a bit of pushing, it goes right through.

I am only sewing straight lines (let's say "somewhat" straight--I have no markings and it's not all that easy to keep them straight).

But the less than straight lines are minor. It's all the problems on the backside that are giving me a headache.

I have puckers....

I have a hole................I knew it would only be a matter of time before I snipped the fabric as well as the threads.

But the worst of all is this......................Arrrgggggggg............the extra fabric on the edge folded back and I sewed right over it.

I'm leaving it. I am already fed up with having to rip stitches out of this.

I hope someday I look back at my first machine quilted item and get a good laugh. Right now it's not all that funny and I am pretty discouraged.

But I did find myself doing this

and that's a good sign.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Green, Rust & White Table Runner

I am trying to finish up all the items I made in '08. I love the colors of this table runner, but I wasn't sure how to finish it off, so I put it away last spring.

That's not a good thing to do because I almost always end up using the fabric that I should have saved to finish the project. I usually like my runners to have a pointed end, but this time I felt I needed to finish off that green square so a straight edge is what I ended up doing.
I think I like the 4 little squares in a row. I am not so fond of the unfinished squares on the sides, but they will have to remain as triangles because this thing is as wide as I can go for a table runner. I don't think I have any more of the rust fabric, so I have no idea just yet what I will do for the binding. Right now I will just work on getting it machine quilted.

I designed this runner to match a set of salad plates I own. When I get it totally completed, I will do a tablescape and post it to that blog.

Right now I am going to watch the historic election returns.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

I Made a Valance to Match the Roses are Red Quilt

I wanted to make a bold window treatment to match the Roses are Red, Borders are Blue Quilt I recently finished.

I searched high and low for the same pattern as the valance I made for my living room. I looked in my fabric bins in the basement and I looked in every drawer in my sewing room. I found a lot of patterns for valances, pillows, aprons, & crafts. I had forgotten I bought a lot of them. Do you do that, too? Buy patterns and never use them? When JoAnn has a .99 cent sale I buy everything I think I may ever want to make....most of which I never do make.

I never did find the pattern I was looking for. I cannot imagine where I put that pattern, but I am sure I will come across it as soon as I no longer need it. Luckily it's a simple pattern and I used newspaper and traced around a finished panel from the living room.

I cut out 20 of these arrows - 10 for the front and 10 for the back (I did two windows). I started them on Saturday afternoon and finished them around noon today. I think it took about 10 hours of work...thank goodness I had that extra hour today!

This is what I ended up with.

I think it's a pretty good match for this quilt.

If I wanted to really made a WOW valance, I would have made the rose block in each of the arrows. I considered it, but making 10 of them was more than I could bear. Each of those rose blocks has 32 teeny tiny pieces in it! I think I like the valance, but I will have to look at it for a few days to see if I need to do any more tweaking. I added those purple sashes over each triangle because I wanted to bring in the purple color from the quilt. I also did not want it to look like a patriotic color scheme.
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