Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Crescent Moon and Venus

I woke up about 6 this morning and was going to go back to sleep until I looked out the window.

These obviously aren't the greatest pictures, but I just had to take them anyway.  It was the crescent moon with a very bright Venus not too far from it.  It was just beautiful, much more so than these pictures show. 

I took a couple of pictures from inside the house, but went outside to take these.  (I sure didn't stay out there long though, with a temperature of -12 degrees and a wind chill of -30.)

I've really been in a sewing and quilting mood lately, which is a good thing.  Last evening I was looking through a quilt book by Debbie Fields of Granola Girl.  All of the quilts in the book are made with flannel, although any fabric could be used.  So I pulled out all of my northwoodsy type flannels and have almost enough on hand to make one of these quilts (except for about a one yard piece which I'll have to buy).  I think I'll get started with the cutting today, especially since the weather isn't very conducive to being outside.

Winter has to be over soon, doesn't it?

Monday, February 24, 2014

On My Design Wall

Just a quick post to show you the new project I've begun working on. 

I'm using a charm pack with tone-on-tone white for the background.  These eight blocks are each sewn but the blocks aren't connected yet since I have finished only half the blocks needed for this quilt. 

I hope to get the other blocks done today and get them all in an arrangement that I like.

Stay warm.  Still very wintry here.

Linking up with  Design Wall Monday         and  Sew Darn Crafty

Friday, February 21, 2014

More Winter and a Pinwheel Runner

Good morning on this wintry day!  The huge snowstorm from yesterday and last night is over.  The weather people predicted up to 16 inches of new snow.  It's hard to tell how much we got because the wind is blowing it around, but it was a lot. 

I shoveled part of the deck because I wanted to get out to the beginning of the wind-blown path and stand next to it just to see how deep it is.  It was halfway between my knee and my hip, so pretty deep.  This path is several feet long and goes from the house to the driveway.  It will be a challenge to get through it with either the shovel or the snowblower.  The good news is that the guy who plows our driveway has been here already, so at least the driveway is clear.

Since we choose to live in Wisconsin, and since there's really nothing I can personally do about the weather, I am trying to see the beauty in it.  Everything looks so clean and fresh after a snowfall, and the trees and bushes are pretty with new snow on them.

This long hard winter has impacted the wildlife also.  We are seeing many fewer birds at the feeders these past two months when the temperatures have been so nasty.  I've also heard reports of people seeing dead deer and turkeys, evidently from the bitter cold temperatures.  This deep snow and the below zero lows for the next week are going to be a further hindrance for them.

However, winter is more than half over, the sun has just come out, and Spring is coming in another month or two.  Yeah!

Here is the latest table runner I made.  It's supposed to be a Valentine's Day runner.  I am obviously a little late getting it finished for this year.

The reason I didn't get it done on time is that I've been sidetracked for the past couple of weeks.  I have been thinking of taking the wallpaper border off the walls in our hallway and painting the walls and trim a different color.  Normally I would wait until we could open doors and windows to help with the paint smell, but I tend to be impatient about some things and decided I couldn't wait any longer to get this done.  Our hallway has seven doors and one window, so the doors and trim took a long time to paint.  The walls haven't been as bad except for the fact that I ran out of paint just as I finished the second coat on the ceiling.  Now I have to wait to put the second coat on the walls until I can get to Home Depot to buy more paint (the closest one to us is about 80 miles away).  I will be over that way in a week, so hopefully the painting will be done soon.

In the meantime, there are plenty of quilting projects I can be working on.

I'm linking up with Sew Darn Crafty

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Black and White Runner

At the end of January, I posted about a table runner I was making (Decisions).  I wasn't sure the original end pieces I had planned on using were what I really wanted.  Well, I finally made a decision and this is how it turned out.

I really spent way too much time on such a small project, but I do like it.

I have another runner to show you very soon.  It's been sandwiched, so now it just needs to be quilted and bound.  Hopefully, that will be done in the next couple of days, so then I can post pictures.

The temps are warming a bit; in fact, today's high is supposed to be above freezing.  Yay!!
But, more snow on the way in a couple of days.  The days are getting longer though, so that's good.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Organizing and Some Finishes

Wow, February already!  As they say, time seems to fly faster the older you get.  However, I am not particularly sad to see January go as it was brutally cold for several days with a pretty good amount of snow on the days that it was not brutal. 

On to something much more pleasant than the weather.  I spent most of the weekend organizing rather than actually sewing.  I am a big fan of Lori Holt's work and blog, Bee in My Bonnet.  In one post, How I Save My Fabric Scraps, she explained what she does with scraps of fabric.  It sounded like a perfect method for me to try. 
I used to have all my scraps in one big box, so it was always a mess and I never really used more than an occasional piece from it.  I decided it was either organize the mess, or just plain throw out all the scraps.  My somewhat frugal mind told me it would be better to organize them.  So I spent a good part of the weekend doing just that.

These are the 1 1/2 inch and 2 1/2 inch strips.

The 3 1/2 inch strips and squares and the 5 inch and 6 inch squares.

The 7 inch squares and some leftovers that don't fit into the other categories.

Now that the scraps are all cut and organized, I am sure I'll be using a lot more of them than I otherwise would have.

I have also finished a few projects.

This is a runner I started some time last year.  I really like the blueberry fabric.

A candle mat from earlier in January.

This runner is one I also started early in January.

For the back of the runner, I used a piece of fabric that was in my stash; not a great match, but it does have a bit of purple in it.

You may be noticing that each of these finishes is a rather small project, which means fast.  It is my tendency to finish the easy ones first, and then tackle the larger quilts, although that means some of the large quilts literally wait for years to get finished.  Maybe someday when I get more focused, I'll get all of the large quilts finished--gosh, did I really say "all"?  Don't hold me to it!

Enjoy the slowly warming temperatures and lengthening days.  Soon it will be Spring!

I'm linking up with Linky Party at Freemotion by the River