Friday, 30 December 2011

Tangerine Tango

The hot colour for 2012 is a brilliant red-orange that Pantone has named Tangerine Tango. Although I don't have a lot of orange fabrics in my collection, I like the combination of orange and turquoise. Here are some examples of this gorgeous, fresh colour combination. What inspires you? Do you have a favourite colour combination? Leave me a comment! --Ann

Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Potholders and Tea Cozy

When we were at my mother-in-law's at Thanksgiving, we saw that her potholders were thin and threadbare. I loved this fabric line when I made a few potholders for my Etsy shop and bought a couple of the blue fabrics to make some kitchen accessories for my MIL for Christmas. I really like how these fabrics are bright and cheerful!

And I forgot to take a picture of the tea cozy! Maybe I'll have to make another, just so I can show you what it looked like!

--Ann

Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Christmas Gift reveal

I love making handmade gifts. And if someone on my gift list is also a crafter, I like to get something that will encourage their love of making handmade things. My daughter-in-law has taken up crocheting and usually has a project with her when she comes to visit, so I thought I would make her a holder for all her hooks, so she can have them with her wherever she goes.

I used a crayon roll tutorial and adjusted the sizes to fit the hooks. I like the hair elastic loop and button for a closure as it is very secure and doesn't catch everything else in your bag as velcro will sometimes do.
All rolled up
Ready to unroll
Room for all sizes of crochet hooks
Labelled with a fine point sharpie pen
Now, I'll just have to make one of these for myself as my crochet hooks are all over the place!

--Ann

Thursday, 22 December 2011

Another Baby Boy Quilt

I picked up this yummy pack of fabrics in the fall at a quilt show in Rocky Mountain House, Alberta. I've been making this quilt pattern for a few quilts now and it works well with the modern prints that aren't really suited to cutting into smaller pieces. The white sashing and borders give it a bright modern look that is quite popular right now.
Monkeys and owls and bugs galore - For Sale here!

This quilt is backed with Minky fabric - it's a lovely microfibre fabric that is so soft and cuddly, but also very stretchy and so is hard to quilt. I basted closer than usual and didn't have any issues when I stipple quilted it on my Janome sewing machine.

--Ann

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Mini QT quilt swap - Doors and Windows

Another round of swaps on the Mini QT swap on Flickr is done & here's the quilt I sent off to my swap partner.

The theme was doors and windows and originally I had planned to make an attic windows block with some kind of fussy cut print for in the windows. BUT, I spent some time online browsing for quilt & window and came across some lovely looking cathedral window quilts. I learned how to do these a long time ago from my friend, Imogene, and was smitten with her full-size quilt made with this technique.

Hope you like my modern version! It was more difficult than I thought it would be and is not likely to be something I do again soon.

--Ann

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Closet Cleaning find

While cleaning up the sewing room a few weeks ago, I found these little paper-pieced blocks that were meant for another project. I needed quite a few more to finish the quilt that the pattern was for, but paper-piecing is not something that I enjoy doing a lot of. So these little gems are going to be little cushions that can be used for pin cushions or as bowl fillers with some potpourri.

Have you ever started a quilting project and then made it into something totally different? If so, let me know in a comment below!

--Ann

Sunday, 11 December 2011

Quilted Potholders

When I need a quick and easy project to complete so that I feel like I've completed something, I usually make a few pot holders. I use 2 layers of batting or 1 layer of Insul-Brite with a layer of batting, so they will work as both pot holders and a hot pad on the table.

Here's a couple from a fabric purchase this summer:
For sale SOLD!!!
For sale here!
For sale SOLD!!!!
These are great gifts for moms, grandmas, teachers, shower gifts, housewarming.

--Ann

Saturday, 10 December 2011

Make Your own Cheese?

This is definitely something I want to try in 2012! Kits to make mozzarella cheese or poutine at home! And they are an Alberta based company.  Make Cheese Inc

Maybe a last minute Christmas gift?

--Ann

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Tutorial Page is up!

Just a quick note to let you know I have a few tutorials up on the tutorial page. Watch for more as time goes on!

And, the last post, Christmas quilts all through the house, I realized I only showed one wall quilt and never even mentioned the quilted tree skirt, so tomorrow, I'll take a few more photos and share a bit more of my Christmas decorating with you!

--Ann

Monday, 5 December 2011

Christmas Quilts All Through the House

My 3 year old granddaughter helped me put up the Christmas this year. I haven't put up a tree with little hands helping for a long time, so it was a challenge to get the tree fluffed up while she was busily unpacking all the lights and ornaments. There were a few hold my breath moments when treasured breakable keepsakes were transferred from box to tree, but we had no serious mishaps!
Decorated tree - definitely looks better in the dark with the lights on!
Cross-stitch stockings made many years ago for my boys!
Nativity from 1000 Villages (Fair Trade Store)
Cowboy Christmas Quilt - could leave this up all year!
Hope you enjoyed the peek at my Christmas decorating! What's your favourite Christmas decoration or holiday tradition?

--Ann

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Coffee Mug Rugs

A fabric panel of vintage coffee signs was the starting inspiration for these quilted mug rugs. I wanted a retro feel and choose a trio of fabrics that continued that theme. Usually I make my mug rugs with the left-over pieces of batting from my larger projects, but this time I thought I would try to use Insul-Bright. Insul-Bright is used in potholders and hot pads because of it's ability to block heat from traveling through from one side  to the other.
Vintage Coffee Sign Mug Rugs
 I was not prepared for the amount of stretch that happened when I machine quilted the first mug rug. I normally don't have any problem with that, especially when using my walking foot on the sewing machine. Needless to say, the rest of the mug rugs were securely pin basted before quilting!

Coffee Mug Rug
Red Coffee Mug Rug
Green Coffee Mug Rug
Hope you're getting all your Christmas shopping done!

--Ann

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Black Friday and Internet Shopping

This weekend is the infamous "Black Friday", the busiest shopping day in the US. I am not much of a shopper and normally, US Thanksgiving and Black Friday pass without much notice by me. Except if I'm running errands and getting groceries and my debit or credit transactions take forever because of the volume of sales all over the continent.

If you have shopping to do and want to miss the crowds at the mall and are looking for something that's not mass-produced, here are some gift ideas from close to home shops (all from Alberta).



Silver Bracelet from Dear Ange

I'll be posting a few more of these finds over the next few weeks and because they're local there's still plenty of time to order online!
Happy shopping!
--Ann

PS - my sewing space has been featured here! Please check it out!

Sunday, 20 November 2011

This week at Magpie Quilts

This was an awesome week for actually finishing some projects that were stacked up on the sewing desk. The Christmas items that I cut out a while back are done.

And I have all my 3x6 bee blocks on the wall trying to figure out how they are going to go together. I am thinking that I will make a couple more so I have 25 and then just sew them together without sashing to make a square quilt. Or I can split the group in half and make 2 smaller quilts. What do you think?
Next week I'll be whipping up some Christmas presents, so maybe I'll show you some hints, but no finished projects! Are you making any Christmas gifts? Please tell me about them!

--Ann

Saturday, 12 November 2011

All Cleaned Up!

It took most of the week, but the sewing room is cleaned up! Still have a lot of organizing to do in the big walk-in closet, so I'll show you that on another day.
 All ready for the next project! This is my workspace, just a sewing machine and a cutting mat on a desk. The little quilts hanging just on the top left of this photo are all quilts I've received as part of the mini quilt exchange on Flickr.
Ann's workspace!
 To the right of my desk is my design wall - nothing fancy, just some inexpensive white flannel tacked to the wall. Easy to take down if needed, but large enough for a good size quilt. The blue, yellow and purple blocks are swap blocks I've received over the past year from fellow quilters all over the world. This will be my next big quilt to finish as soon as I figure out how I will put them together.
In the small space between the door and the closet is shelving where I keep all my buttons and knick knacks. The picture at the top is a pencil drawing done by me when I was in school studying to be an Architectural Technologist. I think I only got a C on it, but I am still proud of it!
I love that I can close the closet doors so you can't see how messy my stash is. I plan on replacing the small bookshelf here with a floor to ceiling one so all my magazines and books can live in one place. The books for the grandkids are also here as this is where they sleep when they come over.
And the bed is all ready for a sleepover. There are 2 mattresses on the bed so I can put one on the floor if needed. I would really like a trundle bed, but the space under this bed is filled with LEGO and Kinex building blocks. The bed surface is a great place to spread out fabrics when beginning a project!

So, you've had a virtual studio tour of my creative space.  Leave me a comment so I will know you've been here! Thanks for visiting!

--Ann

Thursday, 10 November 2011

It's Beginning to Feel Like Christmas!

I have a shopping bag full of Christmas fabrics, some scraps, some larger pieces. Yesterday I took it with me to my sewing day at my friend, Marie's. I pulled everything out, matched up similar fabrics and began to plan some small Christmas-y projects that I could whip up quickly and get posted on Magpie Quilts on Etsy.

Here's a few quilt tops that ended up on the design wall:
Debbie Mumm panel - future potholder?
Jacob's Ladder Quilt Block - future table topper?
More Debbie Mumm Snowmen - future potholders!
Red Cardinals - wallhangings - will probably make hangers to go with these too!
Christmas checkerboard - future table topper?
And I still have a bag full of fabric!

So watch over the next couple days for new quilted potholders, mug rugs, bell pull wallhangings and a couple table toppers.

Happy sewing,
--Ann

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Sewing Room Clean up Time

I share my creative space with the spare room. The room where the grandkids sleep over. The room where the toys are kept. The room with the walk-in closet. You would think that there would be plenty of space to share, but with a twin size bed, a couple small bookshelves and boxes and bins of fabric, I can never find what I need without pulling everything out!

This is what it looked like after I came home from the Craft Sale on Sat.




I started cleaning up yesterday and am still working on it today. I have some ideas that may help me out, but I'll need to go to town first and buy a couple items. Tomorrow is my weekly sewing day with a couple friends, so I will need to get supplies together for a project or two so it can be a productive day.

Happy sewing!
--Ann

Monday, 7 November 2011

Just a sample

Here's a few of the quilts I've recently listed in my Etsy shop:

Seaside Stars Table Runner SOLD!!!

Adoring Table Runner SOLD!!! (from Moda's Adoring fabric line)
Garden Song Table Runner SOLD!!!

Dr. Seuss Baby Quilt SOLD!!!

Adoring Table Runner SOLD!!! (from Moda's Adoring fabric line)

Just cleaning up my sewing room today so I can whip up some more Christmas quilts for you to look at! Will try to keep my camera handy so you can see what's being made in the Magpie Quilt Studio!

--Ann