Saturday, August 31, 2013

Road Trip: To Westcliffe with Other Fiber Fiends

Had a great trip to Westcliffe today to the annual Quilt Show. We also visited the Fiber Arts Festival which was mostly about weaving, beautiful stuff and a visit to Grammie Tammie's Quilt Shop which was so much fun.

They were very busy because of all the quilt show goers, and it was fun to sit in the store and wait for our turn in line, just soaking up the ambiance and great customer service.

We had late lunch at the Wine Mine, it was yummy and felt a little like vacation to sit outside under an umbrella and share a plate of cheeses, fruit, meat, and marcona almonds with a glass of Moscato.

It was a gorgeous end-of-summer day and we did not hit rainstorms until we got back to Highway 50 and the Arkansas River.

Friday, August 30, 2013

Charm School #3 - Learning QAYG (Quilt As You Go)

I learned a lot today about Quilt As You Go projects. This one was probably an intermediate level, however I had done my homework (cut everything ahead of time and was ready to sew when the class started) and I was a class of one so had all the attention of the instructor.

At the end of class, I was ready to prep and sew the binding on which I did when I got home.

Had only one little mistake in it that I corrected with a little snip and stitch, otherwise it is a done project and I think I will be making more for gifts in the future.

Can't wait for my next Charm School that comes up again in November. Until then, on to learn more and new things~!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Preparing for Charm School #3

While I have yet to finish my Charm School #2 project, it is time to prepare for the third one. They do these classes one a quarter and for the price you can't beat it, $25 gets you three hours of help on your project, the charm pack and the pattern. For me, the best part is three hours with like minded folks, so much fun.

I picked out my charm pack and extra fabric for the pattern Which Way. The pattern shows it with bright colored charms with a white background, I chose a neutral patterned for background and think it will turn out really nice. Time will tell.

Here is how the preparation went:
First, I spread out all the charms in the pack, which is Tidal Pool Batiks by Moda. Now I have to pick 32 charms from the 40 in the pack.

Of course, I cannot do this complicated task without my helper. He settled on the ones he liked and let me look at the rest for about 20 minutes. Then he got bored  tired and went to take a nap.

I chose the ones I liked the most and laid them out on the background that I am using to see if they all will work. I made a couple of adjustments and took the chosen charms to the ironing board for the next step.

I pressed all the charms into points and cut the background fabric as instructed. I am ready for class. More on this project later.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

My 1st Big Shirt

I decided that I can wear a big shirt with my black pants to work and make this my new uniform look, however it does not need to be boring or suit-like.

I found the pattern Kerry's Big Shirt from Rag Merchants and picked some colors that I think will be great. The purple one is the first of the collection and goes great over a black tank top or, in cooler weather, over a long-sleeve shirt.

And, as you can see, I had help. The grey one is the second one I created. Both look great with gray or black pants and will wear will at the office.

Pedro looks like he has given his permission.

Looks like a successful project to me~!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Wedding Gift Posted to Nebraska

I started this project when I received the invitation to the wedding of my oldest nephew.

I sent my regrets that I could not attend but started working on the plan for a handmade gift that they can use in their kitchen. The only hint that I had for colors was what they chose for their invitations that I noted were handmade.

The finished project included 4 placemats, four napkins and rings, four coasters, two hot mats and two potholders and a little memory jar stuffed with remnants of the fabrics used and a tag that says Wedding Memories.

I hope it is well received. Best of everything to the newlyweds~!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Wonky Strip Chair Quilt

While I was on my mini vakay, I had an idea to create a chair quilt out of strips of different widths. In my mind this is easy to shop for, looks unplanned and serves a purpose; all those reasons resonate with me.

So I drafted the idea on paper, estimated the amount of fabric I needed and considered how I would choose fabric for this, all while I had breakfast at Jiggie's Cafe in Idaho Springs. This was a strategic breakfast choice because across the road is Hen House Quilts.

Once she opened the shop I went in and began my search for the focal print that helped with the rest of the fabric choices. The owner was a great help with choices and ideas, suggestions and as a sounding board for fabric combinations.

I quilted this on the machine with a decorative stitch (shown). At this time, it is about the largest one I can do in my workspace.

This project also includes the first fabric label that I have created. (shown)

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Where I Did Go for Mini Summer Escape.

It all started with an article in the Colorado Life magazine, the July/August 2013 edition. Penny squishin' - it became my mission.

My first stop was in Denver at the Aquarium. This attraction has been in Denver for several years and this is the first time I have made it a priority for touring. I did find the penny squishing machine first thing and did that before others got the idea.

Being Shark Week I found this picture taking opportunity very comical. It has a place in the back for you to climb up and stick your face in the helmet so you can be the "survivor".

The big teeth of a megalodon. This bite may be prehistoric but it still scary looking.

The first floor to ceiling aquarium is a very impressive site.

And they have tigers. The habitat is undergoing renovation and this fellow was the only one there. He was lonely and looking for his friends.

And the sharks. I managed to see all the species they have including a couple "little" 22-foot great whites. By far, the most popular windows in the place.

This was the friendliest barracuda in the place, he kept coming back right to the glass at eye level to look over the "menu" outside the glass.

The next day I went to Georgetown and rode the Loop Railroad from top (Silver Plume) to the bottom (Devil's Gate) and back. This included a stop to walk 500 feet into a mine portal (that is the horizontal entry). It was very informative with lots of history from our guide. Well work the extra time and dollars.

It was a beautiful day, with some great scenery. The afternoon rain did not start until I was opening the car door, preparing to drive home; talk about timing.
I also visited some fabric/quilting stores enroute: Fabric Bliss in Denver, The Golden Quilting Company in Golden; The Hen House in Idaho Springs. All were different and fun in their own right. Got some great project ideas and purchased enough for a bright, chair quilt. More on that project later.

I hope everyone is finding fun escapes this summer~!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Magic from 5-Inch Squares

By now you have heard me mention charm squares which are 5-inch squares with many possibilities.

As part of a larger project that I am doing for the Nebraska wedding coming up later this month, I created potholders from 5-inch squares, fast and easy. (pssst! I have a charm square template ruler that makes it fast) but these were cut from 5-inch strips so just as easy.

And I also created the coasters that are made with the same size squares, 5 total. The most work for these is cutting and pressing. Otherwise pin, sew and turn to the right side. Very fun for hostess gifts or a birthday gift for someone who has everything.

I hope everyone is finding magic in their world~!

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Where I Did Not Go on Vacation

Another year of summer vacation plans that did not come to be. My first plan was to attend Stitchs Midwest in Chicago-land and visit my friend PawsandKnit. I started in April looking for a reasonable plane ticket and could not find one, even with the plan to fly weekdays. Who knew Chicago was that popular in the summer? We are now working on a plan for November to do the Vogue Live event, will see how that works out.

Then I was invited to go along on one of my bucket list trips. It goes like this: Seattle with a trip to Bainbridge Island to visit Churchmouse Yarns and Tea, then the train ride to Portland and a full on yarn crawl. Could not get my vacation dates changed to join in for this time. Will try to plan this for another year.

I am still planning a little mini-staycation. There will be more on that once I have done it because I need the pictures to go with the post. It is sort of a mission to attain more squished pennies. More on that later.

Until then, happy summer to all~!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Camp Loopy 3 - Not This Year

I will not be camping this final round of Camp Lopy this year.
I have sewing projects on deadline for wedding gifts and other committments that will derail any honest attempt to participate, so it is best to bow out now.
I have enjoyed the hiking and treehouse adventures. Big kudos to Sheri and the Elves for making it another fine Camping experience for all of the Loopy followers.

Best of luck to all~!