"Make what you want to make, and make it the way you want to make it." Gwen Marston

Friday, December 2, 2016

November OPAM

November is not my favorite month.  The leaves have fallen from the trees, and it's dreary and bleak outside.  The kayaks have been put in storage for another season.  On the bright side, that leaves more time for sewing!  And for retreat earlier in the month.



the end of the leaves for the season, near our retreat 
I took four projects to retreat, and worked on all four.  Three tops were finished up to the point where they need applique applied.  Working on that now.  I've also been doing a LOT of embroidery, and hope to have something to show for my efforts soon.  I'm in two groups that have UFO challenges, and I got them mixed up, so I had to pay up for not finishing for one group.  I think that's the first time I've ever had to pay a 'fine' for not finishing my project.  It will NOT happen again - LOL!

My finishes for November include 5 place mats, which were all made from various scraps laying on my sewing table.  Some will go to Meals on Wheels, and one or two are for our guild's Christmas project.  In lieu of exchanging gifts this year, we decided to make place mats and pillow cases for a small Assisted Living  home in our town.  The residents are extremely low income, and have nothing.  We're also making lap quilts in addition to the place mats and pillow cases, and hope to bombard them with gifts and love.

We're having dinner guests tomorrow night, and I whipped up a set of coasters for each couple.  We don't really exchange gifts, but I wanted to send them home with a 'little something'.


I'm determined to use every last inch of this fabric that is leftover from one of my retreat quilts.  And the best part - I won the jelly roll a couple of years ago!

While looking for these pictures, I remembered that I actually also made a postcard for Sheila's swap.  It hasn't yet made it to Brazil though, so I can't share it here.

I do manage to sew at least a little each day, and I'm making progress though I don't have any big finishes.  Next week is crazy busy with parties and gatherings, and then look out.  I've scheduled some major time with Patience, my quilting machine, and we've got a somewhat large stack of projects to finish.  

In closing, I just want to say that Gatlinburg and the Great Smokey Mountains are one of my favorite places, and I'm so sad about their tragic fire.  Please keep the people in your prayers as they try to recover from this terrible act of suspected arson.

keep on stitching........Sunny

April 2016 Great Smokey Mountain National Park



Tuesday, November 1, 2016

RSC and OPAM for October

October was a very busy month.  DH and I took road trips looking for Fall foliage on three different days.  We spent a day in Western Maryland, a day in West Virginia, and a day in Virginia.  We took hundreds of pictures as usual, but the colors weren't as pretty this year because it's been so dry.

We tried new restaurants, packed picnic lunches, discovered new roads and a new park.  One of the perks of being retired is the ability to enjoy Skyline Drive in Shenandoah National Park on a weekday.  Weekends in October are way too crowded.






 When not on the road, I was busy in my sewing room.  I bought the new Gail Pan Christmas book, and then had to justify the purchase by making something.  I just love her designs!


I've been working on this project since January, stitching a block every month for Gifted Gorgeousness.  I won this kit a couple of years ago from Kaaren at Painted Quilt.  It was a lot of fun to finally put all the pieces together.  Kaaren has recently decided to stop blogging, so stop over to bid her Adieu if you haven't already.



A speaker at one of our guild meetings recently used the expression "trickle down" projects, for putting your scraps to good use after finishing a quilt.  I've now made three projects with this fabric line, and I don't really want any hanging out in my scrap bins.  So I made a doll quilt and a place mat. 




Then it was on to finish my block for RSC16.  I believe this is the last color for 2016, but I need three more blocks, so I'll have to choose my own colors.  Or maybe I won't.  Hmmm....these are 16 inch blocks, so with a little more sashing and a border, I think this will be the perfect sized quilt for its purpose.  I've already chosen my "block" for RSC17, assuming Angela continues the tradition.  


RSC blocks, doll quilts, and place mats are all a fun way to use up my scraps, and the final results always go to a good cause.

Tomorrow, vewy vewy early, I'm off to RETREAT!!!!  I've been organizing, packing, and cutting for the past few days.  I try to do the cutting for at least a couple of projects before I get there, especially if it's something detailed.  I still have to do some laundry, pick up a few groceries, and make some cookies, so I better get off here and get busy!


Be kind......Always.........Sunny






Thursday, October 20, 2016

Mid-October

Where does the time go?  I've been keeping very busy with my sewing, but I don't seem to have much to show for it right now.  I did make some string blocks for RSC16.  I decided to substitute yellow and gold for my colors this month.  I need to dig into the scraps and try to come up with three more colors to be able to make the quilts that I had planned.  I guess I better get busier!!


I have a nice little stack of small projects that need to be quilted, and that will hopefully be on the agenda over the weekend.  And of course there are many more projects in various stages of completion.  Never a dull moment around here.

DH and I took a little roadtrip last Saturday, looking for pretty Fall foliage.  We'll probably go out again this weekend, and maybe even next weekend.  The western part of our state has mountains, so the colors turn there first, and then work their way gradually east.





We also tried a coupe of new-to-us restaurants, and they were both very good, and deserving of a return trip.

The following night, while we were preparing dinner, I glanced out the window and saw this.
Isn't Mother Nature an amazing artist?

Today's mail brought a lovely little package from Karen at KaHolly.  I was lucky enough to win two 20-piece charm packs of Free Spirit solids.  The colors are just gorgeous, and I love the way the fabric feels.  I wasn't familiar with this line of fabric, but I will definitely be looking for it in the future.

I guess that's it until I get some quilting done!

Be kind....always............Sunny


Sunday, October 2, 2016

RSC15, RSC16, and OPAM

Yes, RSC15 is finally a wrap.  I made a Dresden plate each month, and also embroidered a flower center.  Here is the final result.  In keeping with the scrappy theme, I made a scrappy border as well as a scrappy binding.  I have a tin filled with leftover bindings, and I just started sewing them together!

Continuing with red for September RSC16, I made a doll quilt and two place mats.  I have entirely too many red scraps, and refused to put them all back in the bin.  The place mats are very simple, and I experimented with quilting them.  One is Baptist fans, and one is free motion stars.


The place mats will be going to Meals on Wheels when I get a quantity of them.  And I'm very happy to have found a new outlet for doll quilts.  They're just a fun size to make, and another good way to use scraps.

These are also my OPAM finishes for September.  Already working like crazy on a new project for October.

Be kind, always.........Sunny


Tuesday, September 27, 2016

RSC16 and more

Hi Friends!  Do you remember this quilt from earlier this month?
Well let me introduce you to the new owner!  My new great niece arrived two weeks ago, while we were on vacation!  I'm not sure when I'll actually get to meet and hold her.    :-(

I'll share some vacation photos in my next post.  We had a wonderful time, but I was too tired each night to post on here.  Many of you have seen pics on Facebook.

Since we got home late Friday night, I've been sewing!!  For RSC16, I made four string blocks, and my unnamed block.  These take longer than you might think, because there's a lot of cutting involved.


There are a couple more red projects in the works, and will be shown here for OPAM by the end of the month.

What's up with all of you?  Hope you're stitching along...... Sunny



Monday, September 5, 2016

OPAM, FNWF, Pin Cushion Parade!

Today is Labor Day, the unofficial last day of summer here.  We've had an exceptionally hot summer, so I'm not sad to see it go.

Do you have any pin cushions that you would like to put on parade?  Our friend, Ida, over at My Sister Made Me Do It  is starting the parade today, and everyone is invited to join in the fun.  Pop on over to link up some of your pin cushions!  And maybe get a few creative ideas for new pin cushions.  You know you can never have too many.  I've also heard that there will be prizes....


Last year, I had my chicken on parade, and shortly after that, two more chickens joined my flock as gifts.  The smaller one travels in my bag to meetings and classes, and the larger one helps out at my quilting machine.

Another gift is a combination pin cushion/thread catcher made especially for me by a friend who hosts me once a week in her sewing room!  It was hard to get a good photos, but it's a nice chunky cushion, and the detachable bag hangs down for threads and small scraps.  I love the colors she chose for me.

For August OPAM, I actually finished four small projects.  Two were from premade blocks that I acquired.  The blocks coordinate, and I'm sure there was a plan for them to be used together, but I couldn't decide on a layout, so chose to make a doll quilt and a baby quilt.  There was even yardage with them, that was plentiful enough for both backings!


My third quilt was a baby quilt for an eagerly awaited addition to our family.  He/she should be arriving in about three weeks.  This was a free pattern from Moda Bake Shop.
I also finished crocheting a little afghan to send along with it, but forgot to take a picture.

FNWF found me quilting away on my RSC15 quilt.  I only have the outer border left to quilt, and then bind it.  It's my UFO project for a small group, and it's due in two weeks, but I'll be on vacation then, so only have a few days to get it finished.  Pictures to follow soon.  This is my largest quilt to date, and I'm loving it!!!!

For our nature outing this week, DH and I have actually made two trips to a nearby sunflower field.  The farmer will harvest the seeds later, but his real purpose for planting the field is just for people to enjoy.  So please enjoy.





 Now, back to stitching...... Sunny