Saturday, December 31, 2011

Batik baby quilt, again

Amidst the house-cleaning today, I managed to quilt the little batik baby quilt - just a simple large meander with suns thrown in. I used a variegated thread, which doesn't show much in the photo but adds a nice touch to the actual quilt. 

Just as well I finally got around to quilting this piece, as my SIL did finally manage to have her baby (a girl, Celia) yesterday...  (I confess, as they live in the US, I had always intended for my mother, who is visiting at the moment, to take the quilt home with her and mail it from there, so actually, I would have finished it whether or not Celia had chosen to make an appearance yet.)

Someone posted a comment asking about the backing - I used this lovely oriental print, partly because it sort of went with the front and partly because, I confess, I had enough of it in the house. I think this was a gift from my friend LisaJo.  I'm sure she'll correct me if I'm wrong...

Friday, December 30, 2011

Batik baby quilt

Today I pinned together this baby quilt top, which I hope to quilt tomorrow. It's for my sister-in-law, who is having a baby (or perhaps already had one - as of this morning East Coast Time US she was still waiting, but she's over a week overdue, so we have high hopes of good news very soon!) and is the last of the slew of baby quilts I had to make for 2011 (this one only barely counts in 2011!). Of course, I already know at least two people having babies in 2012, so I'll be starting a new list soon...

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Seasonal Cross-stitches

You've all put up with my progress (or lack-thereof) updates on the Christmas angels, so I thought at this point, it was important to show that I do actually finish some seasonal cross-stitch projects - some Christmasy, some simply wintery... The snow scene above is one of my favourites - I like the border a lot. 

This one, I'm fond of as well, and I'll tell you, there was a LOT of snow to be stitched in this one, especially considering that it's actually quite a small piece. 

Not as much as in this "Noel" piece, though.  When I picked this one to buy, I really debated over one which said "Christmas" which I also really liked, but in the end, I just couldn't face all that snow.

This one, which I did last year, was very quick to stitch - it's just a few words and some baubles - but very effective, nonetheless, I think. 

And this alphabet with the word "Snow" highlighted is a little older, but again, a quick one to stitch.  These days, I tend to go for this sort of piece more than the older, more indepth, detailed pieces like the dratted angels.

And this one was even quicker as it was stitched by a friend and given to me as a Christmas present last year...  

Next year, I may not be able to add the angels to the list, but the winter piece I am working on at the moment should be good for hanging!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Cross stitch Wednesday

Made good progress on this, this week. Partly because I had quite a few evenings where I could stitch a bit, partly because many of the background stitches are just half crosses, so they don't take as long, and partly because I think it's such a relief to work on after the angels...

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Candles, pieced

Finished the piecing on the candle design - though I just noticed the bottom of the left hand candle is a little off - I will fix that next time I sew - it was the last seam, anyway, so should be easy enough to adjust.  Funny how you sometimes see things in a photo that you don't see when you jus tlook at the piece!  Then it's just a matter of removing the paper and turning it into a quilted piece. Not sure if I will just leave it as a small piece or make it into the centre of something larger. My inclination at the moment is toward the former...

edited to say: I've looked at the pattern again and there's no error in my stitching, that's just the way the bottom of the candle is on the left side. Which means I don't have to take it apart and adjust it, which is nice.

Monday, December 26, 2011

The ones left behind

These are the four "extra" advent calendar pictures - each year, different ones don't get chosen (we obviously have more than we strictly need, but it's more fun that way). This year, it's a sled (given how much snow we had last year, this one was definitely used!), an ornament (there are two different ones), a bell and a house. I'm sure they'll get a chance next year...

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Advent Calendar: Christmas Day

And the final choice for the advent calendar...

Postcards from Christmas

The postcard hanging with the Christmas selection... In the new year, we will remove the most Christmassy of these and replace them with more generic winter ones - a lot of them are snowmen and trees and things anyway, so they can stay...

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Advent Calendar: Day 24

Today's choice - the church - for no particular reason other than I liked it best of the ones which were left at this stage. 

Christmas placemats

I've actually done a little sewing today, but only a little on the candles, so I thought that I'd show these instead, as they are more interesting!  

This is a set of six appliqued & quilted placemats that I received in a Secret Santa swap with a small group I used to belong to (it's kind of faded away a bit now). 

I actually know who made them, even though it's a secret - and I have to say I love them. 

We bring them out every year, though we don't actually eat off them, and it never ceases to amaze me the detail she put into them. 

Half of them are secular and half sacred, which is a nice combination.

And because I am not an applique person at all myself, they are an even more appropriate gift for me!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Advent Calendar: Day 23

This one is pure wishful thinking, I think!

Candles, halfway

This is the top half of the candle piece; the bottom has more leaves and the three baubles. It's not quite as big as the top, but I think it has more pieces, so it will probably take just as long to do. It's coming along nicely, though. 

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Advent Calendar: Day 22

Today's choice was the stocking - we had a group by the fire before, now it's just the one, closeup. Only  a few more to go!

Candles again

More of the candles done today. This is the piece I sewed the other day, plus about 6 other sections. Looking good so far! It's a nice pattern to sew - some very tiny pieces, but well laid out and good matching for joining the sections. 

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Advent Calendar: Day 21

Today's choice - a shiny star. Ok, not so shiny as yellowy, but close enough - just four more to go!

Cross-stitch non-update

Didn't get any stitching done this week - several nights we were out one place or another - and other nights, I was just too tired to focus on the angel cross-stitch, which was what was up for being worked on this week.  I'm finding it hard at the moment to focus on that piece - it's just too detailed for my tired brain - so I've decided to pull out something else to work on - this Four Seasons "Winter" piece - which is a lot less of a strain on the brain. As you can see, it's something I've worked on a bit in the past, but not finished (I have fewer of those piecs in my life now, though, which is a good thing...).  Here's what it should look like when finished.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Advent Calendar: Day 20

Blogger seems to be absolutely obsessed today with turning my photos the wrong way up while uploading, but as this one doesn't really matter, I'm going to leave it as is.  Today's advent calendar choice was the Christmas crackers. This is one of the patterns which wasn't in the original kit, but which I made up myself to reflect one of the more English aspects of Christmas.   Look at this now - only 5 more to go (and given the shape of the calendar, one of those is Christmas day itself!).

More Christmas goodies

A few more Christmassy quilt things - this is a small wallhanging - maybe six inches across, which I received as a gift one year when we swapped Christmas decorations in my quilt group. 

This (the bunting) is a bit hard to see given all the other stuff in the room, like my laundry! But I received this as a Secret Santa gift last year in the BQL (British Quilting List) Secret Santa. I really like it - it has tiny bells at the bottom of each triangle of the bunting...

And this is another Secret Santa gift - a Christmas cushion.   I've not taken part in the Secret Santa this year, as I didn't really think I'd have time to make anything, as I've been incredibly busy this year and I didn't want to stress over it...

Monday, December 19, 2011

Advent Calendar: Day 19

Olivia's choice today - this is another of my favourites - it's just really sweet, plus I think the fabric choices work very well here (if I do say so myself!).

Can't believe it's nearly full up!

Christmas Quiltie Goodies

A while back I showed off most of the quilts I'd received in swaps, etc, but perhaps not all the Christmas ones (as some were packed away). Now, of course, they aren't packed away, so it's a good time to show them off...  Today's selection is actual small quilts - the one above is from the Four Seasons Quilt Swap (Holiday Edition) and was made by Cecilia

This one wasn't actually made as a quilt, but rather as a block for a birthday block swap I did - I turned it into a miniquilt and have it with the Christmas stuff because it seems Christmassy to me. It was made by Helen, and what perhaps doesn't show  in the photo is that it's made with lots of folds and flaps, so it has really interesting texture to it. You can see some of that texture here, where I originally posted about it.

And finally (for today) this miniquilt, which was made for the Miniature Booty Swap (Holiday Edition), and made by Toni, the host, herself.

I do have some other holiday quiltie goodies, but if I show them now, what will I show tomorrow?

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Advent Calendar: Day 18

As predicted yesterday, today's choice is the gingerbread man, in honour of our Christmas baking. Yum!

Art Nouveau Woven Ribbons

No more to show on the paper piecing, though I did manage to get these blocks together. My original plan to make a few more (I had 28) was scuppered by the fact that I didn't have any more of one of the fabrics, so instead, I put four of the blocks aside and sewed the other 24 together in a 4x6 arrangement. It's still a bit long and thin, though, so I'm thinking I might take the bottom row off and make it 5x5 - I have enough blocks for that. Maybe. If I feel like it.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Advent Calendar: Day 17

Today's choice was by Olivia - she decided to go with the heart. It's a nice block. I'm sure tomorrow will be the gingerbread man, as we are doing our Christmas baking tomorrow. Not that we make gingerbread, mind you, but it's the idea that counts.