Thursday, July 24, 2014

revisiting doors

The other day I was going through some of my supplies and came across these forgotten stitcheries from 2012. After our trip to London (has it really been 2 years? seems like yesterday.) I was infatuated with the beautiful, colorful doorways we had seen. I recreated 2 of the door photos I had taken in fabric. Specifically, wool felt and embroidery on quilting cottons....
 And there they sat, all folded up in a drawer. So I bought two artists canvases & stretched them over, creating some interesting wall art for our house and another wonderful memory of the London trip.

Not exact replicas of the photos, but pretty close I think. Every time I look at them, I fantasize about going back.... ahhhh someday.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

teaching kids to sew, big stitch quilting

The girls were back at ellyn's place today to work on their economy block pillows. They liked the big stitch hand quilting I had done on my sample & asked if I could teach them that. Why certainly!
 I love to hand stitch (I know that makes me an oddball to some of you!). I find it very relaxing. And ever since I discovered tiger tape, my hand stitching looks so even and tidy, I love it even more! So I got the tiger tape out and the girls set to work.

They did a wonderful job! Two of them found it very relaxing and fun. The third.... well, not so much! She openly declared that it was not her favorite part of sewing. I assured her that it was quite all right. She tried it and it wasn't for her! I told her many of my adult sewing friends feel the same way.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Texas Roadtrip QAL San Antonio!

Hello friends! Welcome to the ellyn's place stop on the Texas Roadtrip. I am blogging to you from Allen, TX which is just north of Dallas. But I am lucky enough to tell you about one of my favorite Texas cities, other than Allen of course, San Antonio. 

Our family first visited San Antonio in 2003 shortly after becoming residents of Texas. We went down Thanksgiving weekend and had such a wonderful time. Walking along the riverfront, especially with the Christmas Lights shining, was such a joy! We also purchased seats to sit along the river and watch the boat parade on the day after Thanksgiving. So beautiful!

While you are in San Antonio, you will want to visit the Historic Alamo (which is right in the center of the cit.! I don't know what I expected, but it wasn't that), and maybe take a trip to nearby Sea World.

Nowadays we head down toward San Antonio fairly often. Our youngest, Ally, is about to start college at Texas State in San Marcos just north of San Antonio. Last time we were there, while she was at her orientation, I talked hubby into taking me to explore the local quilt shops.

At the north end of San Antonio, in Schertz, TX, we found The Scrappy Quilter. What a delightful shop! The ladies there were so friendly and helpful and I had a wonderful time exploring their awesome selection of fabric, patterns and notions. Even though it was not yet July, they shared with me their completed row for the Row by Row Experience. If you drop by the shop now (and I hope you will!) you can pick up the pattern for this stunning row....

Are you working on the Texas Roadtrip quilt? Here's your San Antonio block....
This block is called the Alamo Star (perfect for San Antonio don't you think?) This is a simple paper pieced block, perfect for newbies to foundation paper piecing like me! You will need to make four sections from this pattern....
 Stitch them into two pairs...
 and then stitch your two pairs together....
 Look! you have a star!
 Now put some wide borders on all four sides....
 And trim your block to 8 1/2 inches square, placing your ruler on an angle so you end up with a wonky setting (ok, you don't HAVE TO make your block wonky, but I highly recommend it!)

And guess what? The Texas Roadtrip sponsor, Aurifil, has offered up a fabulous giveaway for one visitor today. To win this great pack of Aurifil thread, leave a comment below. I will choose a winner this Friday, July 25....

Happy Travels friends! If you just found me today through the roadtrip, I hope you will come back and visit often. 

Sunday, July 20, 2014

this and that

This week has been unusually cool for Texas in July. We even had one day of glorious rain! Perfect weather for hanging out in the studio.

I finished up a birthday gift for a friend that I will share with you later....

 Tidied up the sewing space and decided I needed a new ironing board cover. After a little stash digging, I found these lovely fabrics which coordinate nicely with my room and freshen up my ironing board. I wonder what I intended to make with them originally? Hmm...
 The lady who works at the dry cleaners has taken a liking to the Little Wallets I've been making. She requested a teal one for her daughter....
So nothing major happening here, just enjoying the cool temperatures (which I understand will leave us today. boo) and playing in my sewing room. Not a bad life if you ask me!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Teaching kids to sew... economy blocks

 Three of the teen girls came to sew at ellyn's place today.....

 I taught them how to make economy blocks. Each of them made four blocks and assembled them into a pillow top.
 The girls have become expert quilters, sewing with minimal instruction, pressing their blocks and having a blast as they go.
I just love having them here. They will be back soon to finish up their pillows.

Friday, July 11, 2014

update on the placemat project

I've been having so much fun with the Placemat Project. It's a great instagram swap. You can read my first post about it here. Since that post I have received my second placemat from Laurel.....
 And my third placemat from Hayley (along with an extra fabric treat!)
 Look how amazing they all look (together with the first one from Hannah)...
 Meanwhile, my third placemat made it's way to Hannah. Yes! The same Hannah who had sent me my first one! You can see her first 2 placemats in the background, one with Xs and one with Os. Isn't it funny that I had already made her +s before I even saw these!
I can't wait to receive my fourth one and send mine off too so I can share with you!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

teaching kids to machine sew - our last day

I know I promised to take you along on a field trip today. Unfortunately it was cancelled at the last minute. The girls were actually happy to have another day to sew! First they finished off the bindings on their little quilts, so they could take them home with them.

 Then I taught them how to make half square triangles. They had so much fun laying them out in different patterns and deciding how they wanted to sew them together.

I'm so proud of how hard they worked this week and how much they learned in a short time!