Monday, 20 September 2010


We were babysitting our three grandkids a couple of weeks ago and they got a chance to try out some sewing. We had two handcrank machines out and they took turns making their very own four patch block. They loved making their block and want to come back to "make it look like your blankets, Grandma" :-). We will find some scrap batting and backing and make them into little quilts for their Webkinz next time they come. Here is 4 year old Leah checking out how this machine operates:

Leah with her finished 4 patch block. She chose the colours herself:

Lauren is 6 and took to sewing like a pro. She is all concentration here:

Lauren's four patch block all finished:

Grandpa showing her the ins and outs of the machine:

Eight year old Josh, even abandoned his computer game to come and make his block!! He did a great job and caught on right away:

Thumbs up for a job well done! He chose spider fabrics for his block:

When I went to get the Singer 28 handcrank machine from the library table upstairs in our livingroom, we opened up the attachment compartment to check the threading diagram in the manual and we found some lego pirates LOL! Our other grandson, Joey, hid them in the machine so no one else would play with them til he came back again.

This past Friday evening, we had our friends, Aileen and Jarrett over for dinner with their three boys, Dustin, Jayden and Keegan. The boys had done a little sewing over the summer vacation at home and loved it. We now had a third handcrank machine, so we set all of them up on the table and the boys raided my scrap basket and started sewing strips together. They also caught on famously and did a great job!! Here's Jayden working on his creation on a Singer 201 handcrank:

Keegan got to try the Singer 28 handcrank. He's 4 years old and also handled the machine very well:

Jake teaching him the fine art of sewing on a handcrank:

Dustin sewed on the Singer 15-96. He is in grade 5 and did so well, he could sew without supervision! Mom Aileen and Jayden in the background.

Keegan checking out Dustin's machine:

This takes concentration:

Dustin's work:

Jayden and Keegan posing with their masterpieces:

Their pieces remind me of Gees Bend quilts :-).

I just love the combo of kids and handcranks!! Next time they come, we'll have to get their Dad on one of the treadle machines...he was itching to try it :-).

Sunday, 19 September 2010

Skinny Mini - sewing with Friends!

My two friends, Lynn and Amy, came over last week for a sleepover! Lynn had visited the States awhile ago and bought a little kit for each of us, called "Skinny Mini". It had all the fabrics needed for a lovely little mini table runner in a cute little bag complete with a zipper! Lynn had just purchased a new to her vintage Bernina 830 so Amy brought hers along and I set mine up. Here is the 830 sweat shop!!

We had gone shopping together on Tuesday and Lynn bought some cool telephone fabrics and made a pillow case for her DH, who collects telephones:

Gail came for the morning and did some handstitching while we chatted and worked:

I quilted the table runner on my Singer 15-88 treadle since Lynn was borrowing my 830 for a little while.

Gail took a photo of what we all accomplished in an afternoon and the next morning. Amy is standing beside her Skinny Mini, the center one is Lynn's (right) and the right one is mine. Amy completed two more Dear Jane blocks and I did one. Lynn worked on a hand stitched DJ block and made the pillowcase:

I put my Skinny Mini on my cabinet in the kitchen. The colours look great up there!

This is the cabinet that we had made for our kitchen last year by a dear friend in the Church who is in his 80's! We stained and varnished it ourselves and added matching handles to our kitchen cabinets.

Closeup of the quilting done on my Singer 15-88 treadle (you can drop the feed dogs on this treadle and do free motion quilting on it):

Friday, 17 September 2010

Seriously cute Pincushion

I picked up the Quilt Quick Quilts magazine #117 (Nov. 8, 2010) on a mini shop hop with two friends this week and it had this seriously cute pin cushion pattern in it. Since I'm all caught up on all my other projects (LOL), I thought I'd squeeze this little project in. I need a pincushion for my cutting table as I'm always walking back to my thread and snippet catchers at my sewing stations. I put some real sheep wool against the front of it and filled the back up with plastic pellets to give it some weight. It's almost like a bean bag! Here is the finished pincushion with blue and yellow pins in it :-).

Pin cushion without the pins:

The front cover of the Quick Quilts magazine:

Two colour ways featured in the pattern:

OK, back to my UFO's :-).
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Thursday, 16 September 2010

A Dear Jane block!!

I finally got around to sewing another Dear Jane block today!! I had two friends over who are also working on a Dear Jane quilt and we challenged one another to get one more completed. Great to have friends to spur us on and keep us motivated!!

It's been a long time since I worked on this project. This is M 5 Mother's Point. I have now completed 58 blocks of the 169 for the center blocks. I have not decided yet if I will do the triangles. It's a good thing that I have a 10 year deadline for this quilt :-). I hope to be a little more faithful in completing the blocks this winter.
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Friday, 3 September 2010

Marty Goes to a Retreat!

Meet Marty the sock Monkey!

Nine members of the Hearts and Hands Quilt Guild went on a four day retreat to a lovely cottage in Parry Sound which is owned by a brother and sister in law of one of our members. This is the second year that we have gone. We had a wonderful time sharing lots of laughs, eating yummy food
and getting some serious sewing done! We all took turns taking care of a meal and cleanup and dessert.

Joyce brought along her sock monkey that she knitted. She named him Marty. Isn't he just the cutest monkey?
He's keeping an eye on the Scrabble tiles so we don't peek at the other team's letters :-).

"Hi, I'm Marty! Pleased to meet you. Let me tell you about my fun week!"

"Moan!! I'm trying to get up!! These ladies keep crazy hours and make too much noise and I can't sleep! Now they want me up at 6:00 a.m. to sew!!"

"No one is paying any attention to me!! Hrmpphh!!!" (Monkey with an attitude :-)

"Adriana, can I borrow your camera so I can take pictures too? Pretty please?"

"Maria, why are we taking all the stitches out again?"

We went to Parry Sound Tuesday afternoon to the fabric shop and Marty got to come along (checking out FQ's with Cathy and Joyce):

"I really prefer the orange, but Jacqui didn't listen to me and she bought pink for the backing of her quilt. She says the Mommy of the baby who's getting this quilt would like pink better. Nobody listens to me anyway...I don't know why I came along on this retreat!!"

"This squash soup is yummy, Marylynn."

"I like those little squares with letters on them!!"

"Donna!!! Watch my tail!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"

"This thing is scary!!!"
(Bea teaching monkey the fine arts of using a rotary cutter)

"Ooooooh....that scary thing is hot Cathy! I'm made of wool, you know!!"

"Yummy orange Ina!"

"These ladies really tire me out! I wish there was a pillow in this pillowcase though!!"

"I'm on the top of world, looking down on.........! I love hanging out here!!"

"Jacqui hasn't got a clue how to fix Adriana's sewing machine....I'll give her a hand."

"Yup, I think we got it now!!"

"What's in this bowl thingie up here? Whew!! Bright!"

"I like this Bernina sewing machine."

"Hmmm....those flowers are pretty funky on that quilt and some of your leaves are crooked!! Can't you do a better job, Jacqui?"

"I'm a Canadian monkey!!"

Me and my Mommy havin' a little nap:

"I got to print my own name in the guest book!!"

"Gasp!!! I can't breathe!!" (abandoned in the van when we got home!!)

I had fun on this retreat (but I AM tired!!) and I hope they'll take me along again ...I hear there might be some friends for me to hang out with too!! Can't wait. Til next time. Maybe I'll try some of this stuff. It smells kinda funny though!!

Love, Marty