Monday, March 25, 2019

Quilt Show: Southern Comforters Quilt Guild

Since discovering the Southern Comforters Quilt Guild, and their annual show, I try to get to it every year. It's only a short drive (about two miles) from my house to the show. Here is a summary of last year. This year was another great year.
This year they had a fun vendor hop that seemed like a great idea to me. I try to stop in at each of the vendors to see what they've brought. Working a show is so much work. I decided to join in and visit the different shops. I met some great vendors. 
What did I get for playing along? Why, a goody bag with a few fun things inside. Candies, thread, thread spool hugger, a craft clip, some fabric (even though I was so good and didn't buy any fabric), a marking pen, and a coupon for a local quilt shop. Some of these tools I already have and use, others (like the marking pen) are new to me. I'll let you know how they work out.

I hope this fun vendor hop helped get people to the vendor booths and made it a success for the vendors. Sometimes quilt shows are the only time I see some of the vendors because they're too far for me to travel, or their schedules and mine just never meet up.

Tools and supplies (affiliate links):
thread spool hugger
craft clips
marking pen

Friday, March 22, 2019

Charity Quilting

This fun little quilt was pieced by Trudy.
This one was pieced by Mary.
This is the stack I dropped off at Annapolis Quilts for Kids last weekend. Not as many as some months, but still a respectable stack of quilted quilts.

Here is the EpochConverter for 2019.

2019 Charity Quilt Count: 18

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Comfy Orange Shawl

I have an amazing collection of yarn. My Aunt Betty has gifted me with fabric an yarn over the years. If you have never heard of Aunt Betty, check out this great video from Professor Pincushion about Aunt Betty.
I've been trying to find the perfect project for what seems a never-ending supply of orange. I don't have a problem with orange. I like it along with the other colors. It's just that there seems to be so much of it. I've cast on with it a few times, and started out crocheting, too. 
Until I found this Moss Stitch Shawl pattern I hadn't found the right project. This is two strands of Knit Picks Comfy Worsted in the color "carrot". This is a cotton/acrylic blend that is washable and soft.
I paired it with a collection of textured yarns from Dancing Leaf Farms called Biggie. It is six different bases dyed in the same colorway (it seems I only have five). I'm holding two strands of yarn together while I work the pattern. Sometimes I'll pair two strands of the solid color, sometimes I will pair one strand of the solid with a textured yarn. The fabric is soft and heavier than I expected but wonderful.

I have no idea how this is going to turn out, but I'm looking forward to the adventure.  

Tools and supplies (affiliate links):
Crochet hooks: Clover Crochet Hook Set (10 hooks)

Monday, March 18, 2019

Crochet Socks Update

Last week I shared my progress on a pair of crochet socks.
I'm back to update my slow progress. After my first failed attempt at shaping the back of the heel, I tried again. Then, I turned my first crochet heel. This isn't the first one, that one turned out to be a little off-center, so this is actually my second attempt. Learning is a process. A process that I enjoy almost as much as I enjoy creating.
I've worked the heel and the decreases and I'm off to working the instep. I'm not sure these are quite the right size, but I'm learning so much! And self striping yarn is fun, too.

Remember, making something that doesn't turn out perfectly the first time isn't a failure. You used your time and materials to learn. That is not a failure. No one got on a bicycle their first time and set off on the Tour de France. No one put on their running shoes the first time and ran a marathon. Don't expect creative pursuits to be the exception. It takes time, and practice, to get good at something. Give yourself the space to fail. It will make your creative journey so much more enjoyable.

Tools and supplies (affiliate links):
Crochet hooks: Clover Crochet Hook Set (10 hooks)
Yarn from Knit Picks

Friday, March 15, 2019

Crochet Socks

I've been meaning to try my hand at crochet socks for a long time. When Rohn Strong shared his socks patterns in an issue of Simply Crochet I had to race out and pick up a copy. Sadly, it takes several weeks for UK magazines to make their way across the Atlantic. I did manage to get my copy, though. I grabbed some sock yarn from Knit Picks and my Clover hook and got started.
This is what happens when you fail to follow the instructions. You end up thinking you have made progress but have to rip back a bunch of rows. I was not deterred, however.
I got back to hooking and made it back to the point where it is time to turn the heel. Now I have to learn how to turn the heel on a crochet sock. Wish me luck!

I should pick up a copy of Rohn's book Step Into Crochet: Crocheted Sock Techniques--from Basic to Beyond!

Tools and supplies (affiliate links):
Crochet hooks: Clover Crochet Hook Set (10 hooks)

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Glam Clam Farmer's Market

I shared the assembly of this fun quilt last week. All the details for construction tools are at the bottom of the post.
I decided to quilt it with swirls and waves.
This was a quilt to use up a bunch of fabrics I collected over several years. For the binding, I used leftover strips from the backing from another quilt. When I added the binding, I realized I was short by several inches. I grabbed some of the leftovers from the scrap pile leftover from this quilt and spliced in some orange slices. 
This was a great project to build confidence with curved piecing using the 12"Clammy.

Tools and supplies (affiliate links):
Creative Grids 6.5" x 24.5" Rectangle
Fiskars Rotary Cutter
Stick Rotary Cutter, 28mm for cutting those inside arcs
Fiskars Self Healing Rotary Cutting Mat
BLACK+DECKER Classic Steam Iron
Grabbit Magnetic Pin Cushion
Fiskars 8-inch scissors
Juki TL-2010Q
The Clammy 12"
Cheryl Ann's Quilting Design Wall - 72" White

Monday, March 11, 2019

Virginia Adventures

Last week I had to travel down to Norfolk, Virginia, for a business meeting. I drove down on Monday to make the meeting on Tuesday. Monday evening I went for a walk down by the waterfront. 
There are many of these painted mermaids down there outside businesses. 
I snapped a few photos while I was wandering around looking for a place to eat dinner. 
Annapolis had a collection of birds downtown, so this kind of art installation is something I've seen before. 
There was even this little one at a breakfast place rendered in miniature as a trophy.

Friday, March 8, 2019

Charity Quilting

This was a fun panel.
This panel had a couple strips added by another member of  Annapolis Quilts for Kids to bring the finished size up. A fun little quilt.

Here is the EpochConverter for 2019.

2019 Charity Quilt Count: 16

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Glam Clam Farmer's Market

I've had The Clammy 12" for a while now. It has been on my shelf waiting to be used to make something awesome. Check out Latifah Saafir Studios for more information about this great tool.
I also have this ridiculous stack of fruit and vegetable fat quarters. I decided it was time to put these two things together and make something. This will be another project taken primarily from my stash of fabrics.
Latifah Saafir Studios has some excellent YouTube videos on cutting, marking, assembling, and pressing the clam shapes. If you're nervous about those curves, I recommend you take a look at the videos to see how she breaks it down. I was cutting and sewing in no time.
I cut the fruit and vegetable fabrics until I had almost enough for a generous-sized quilt. Not quite a twin, but still a good size. I grabbed some green solids and understated prints to fill in the rest of the spots. I am super pleased with how I managed to fill out the remainder of the clams and balanced the color a bit. It's still a loud quilt, but what do you expect with those bright prints?
The size of these clams helps you get the hang of piecing curves without too much risk of messing it up. This is my very first point, and I think it came out pretty close to spot-on. Now to piece the rest of the rows.
It took what seemed like forever to get all the rows sewn together. I added a border to stabilize it all and frame up all those fruits and vegetables.
I bought this great Henry Glass wide backing fabric at Spring Water Designs. It really seemed the perfect backing for this quilt. This is the second piece of fabric I bought this year. 2 5/8 yards of wide backing fabric added. Bringing the total of new fabric to 7 and 5/8 yards. 
I loaded it up for quilting. I think that will have to wait for another post as this one already seems somewhat long.

Fabric purchased this year: 7 and 5/8 yards

Tools and supplies (affiliate links):
Creative Grids 6.5" x 24.5" Rectangle
Fiskars Rotary Cutter
Stick Rotary Cutter, 28mm for cutting those inside arcs
Fiskars Self Healing Rotary Cutting Mat
BLACK+DECKER Classic Steam Iron
Grabbit Magnetic Pin Cushion
Fiskars 8-inch scissors
Juki TL-2010Q
The Clammy 12"
Cheryl Ann's Quilting Design Wall - 72" White

Monday, March 4, 2019

Indecision Crochet

Since my last knit and crochet projects, I've been waving in the creative winds of indecision. I've started a few things. Like this amazing double-crochet foundation. Totally a great technique for your crochet tool bag. It hasn't become anything more, though.
I used some scrap yarn to make this motif from the book Crochet Motifs. The directions and charts are great if you want to learn to make motifs. I'm trying to figure out how best to incorporate something like this into a shawl project. That is so very much a work in progress. 
I also started this somewhat strange shaped hat. I have no idea if it will work out, but I think it will be pretty cool if I used self striping yarn to make it the next time.

Have you been trying to decide what to do with your creativity? 

Tools and supplies (affiliate links):
Crochet hooks: Clover Crochet Hook Set (10 hooks)
Crochet Motifs book

Friday, March 1, 2019

Charity Quilting

This is one I pieced using leftover 2.5" strips. I often trim the backing and then cut the leftovers into usable sizes. sometimes there is enough to cut an outer border (3.5" strips), or an inner border (1.5" strips), and anything that is big enough for a 2.5" strip. Everything else goes into the string bins to make string blocks. This one was finished off with scrappy binding made from even more 2.5" strips.
This top was pieced by another member of  Annapolis Quilts for Kids. A fun little quilt.

Here is the EpochConverter for 2019.

2019 Charity Quilt Count: 14

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Virus Poncho in Wizard

I couldn't resist giving this Mandala yarn a try. I decided it might look great as a virus poncho.
I carried it around for weeks. Working on it in the car or while waiting for appointments or for dinner. 
Even when it was little I thought it was pretty awesome. 
More work in the car. 
Until it was a finished object. I used two cakes of yarn for this project. 
I'm glad I gave this yarn a try. It isn't anything fancy, but if you like acrylic for wash-ability, it might be for you. And the colors are pretty fun, too.

Tools and supplies (affiliate links):
Crochet hooks: Clover Crochet Hook Set (10 hooks)

Monday, February 25, 2019

Another Dotted Rays

I started another Dotted Rays early in the year. I've been working on it during those times while I'm waiting, or riding in the car. These little bits of time are rarely wasted.
This one is pretty small as it uses less than 150 grams of sport and DK weight yarn. More of a shawlette than a shawl. The solid is a DK from Knit Picks. The multi is a Knit Picks sport weight yarn I dyed last June.
As usual, I decided a nice wet-blocking would open it up and give it some character.
See, it just fits around my form's shoulders.
Blocking really opens up the details.
An understated shawl but a perfect scarf.

Tools and Supplies (affiliate links):
Needles: Knitter's Pride 6/4 mm Dreamz Fixed Circular Needles, 32"
Blocking mats: Balance From Puzzle Exercise Mat with EVA Foam Interlocking Tiles
Blocking wires: Knit Picks Lace Blocking Wires & T-Pins
Knit blockers: Knitter's Pride Knit Blockers & Pin Kit