Sunday, March 25, 2018

Birdie Birdie

I finished the Birdie Birdie quilt last week. Life has been a bit busy, so this is my first chance to post about it. I bought a new computer, as my old one was 8 years old and getting slower by the day. Posting had become very difficult. So this is the first post on the new computer. Hurray!
 So here are my birdies. This is pattern from Lorna at Sew Fresh quilts. I had wanted to make this for a long time, and finally bought the pattern. I love these sweet little birdies.

 I selected a multi colored stripe for the binding. It has all the colors that are in the quilt and sets it off quite nicely.
 I used up my leftover background fabric and a couple of other pieces to make the backing. I bought the birds on the lines fabric from Spoonflower a few years ago but could never figure our where to use it until now.
And this is the first use of my new labels I ordered from Dutch Label Shop. I am super pleased with these new labels.

I will be off to North Carolina this week to visit the Grandchildren. So, no sewing or blogging for the next two weeks, but lots will happen when I return. Have a great rest of your weekend.

Friday, March 16, 2018

Back From Whence I Came

In the last few months, I had an epiphany. I like handwork again. When I first started making quilts, I machine pieced and hand quilted. But then, in 2010 I discovered the modern quilting movement. I found blogs and so much inspiration to create, with quilts and pouches and pillows. And everything could be done on the machine, which sped up the production time table and enabled me to produce more, faster.
 Fast forward to 2018. After many many projects, I took the class for this quilt. I wanted to learn some new techniques. When it was done, I decided to hand quilt it with Pearl Cotton since, to me, there were too many elements to machine quilt it without making myself crazy. I knew this could take awhile, but I decided it was the best idea. And Surprise! I loved doing it and it didn't actually take all that long to do. Just a few weeks, mostly while watching football. And when it was done, I found I really missed having hand sewing to do. So I began looking for things to hand sew in the evenings.
 This is the third quilt I have decided to hand stitch down the binding. For years now I have done it on the machine, and I still do for quilts that will have heavy use. But I am enjoying stitching so much, that I like doing this step again, after years of avoiding it.
 And, I enjoyed hand quilting with the Pearl Cotton so much I decided to do that again with this small lap quilt. I wanted it to stay as soft as possible.
 This is my pile of hand stitching stuff that sits next to my chair that I usually sit in of an evening. It has everything I need and keeps it together in that small wooden box.
I even added Miss N's latest dress to the pile after all the machine work was done. Sewing on buttons counts as hand work.

I have also done some embroidery work as well. I am really loving this new enthusiasm I have found for hand work. I hope it continues. Talk to you soon.

Linking up to Crazy Mom Quilts.

Sunday, March 11, 2018

A Few Finishes

So I have been making things. Not just quilts. I am going to visit my Children and grandchildren soon and I will take all the things with me to save on shipping. My husband says if I make much more, I will have no room for my clothes. Here is some of what I have made.
 First, this small quilt made from a pattern by Lorna at Sew Fresh Quilts. I love all the bluebirds and the one redbird. I have been wanting to get this pattern for ages, and I finally did. Gotta get a back ready and get it quilted. This will be pretty simple.
 My little Noodle needed another pair of pants. She has a pair of these I made about 4 years ago for her brother with puppies all over them, but when I got this ABC fabric from Heather Ross' new line, this is what they had to become.
 The green is really more vibrant than the pictures. This pattern is Anna Maria Horner's Quick Change Trousers. The inside fabric, which is the same as the cuffs and the back panel, is a Jeni Baker print from a few years ago.
And this cute skirt! This is also an Anna Maria Horner pattern. The pocket on the front is like a hoodie pocket; it goes all the way through so your hands can touch. It is fully lined. This was so simple to make, I want to make more, but I will wait to see how it fits first.
And last, but not least, my new labels came. I have long been wanting to order woven labels. My printed ones have been great, but after a bunch of washes, they fade pretty badly. For quilts that get used a lot, that's not good. I saw many makers are using Dutch Label Shop, so I gave them a try. I haven't sewn one in yet, but very soon. I am very pleased with how these came out. My opinion, not a paid advertisement.

That's it for now. Have a lovely Sunday my friends.

Monday, March 5, 2018

A Few Thoughts About Blogs

Where have all the bloggers Gone? I was reading an old blog post this weekend, on someone else's blog, asking this same question. The post was two years old. I have often wondered this exact thing. I know that there are many bloggers still out there, blogging away. But so many of the most creative and inspiring ones have little to no content any more.  And why is that?

Well, lots of reasons I think. Now I for one know that change is hard. And it comes at a price. When I first started reading blogs, I got so excited. I was so inspired to try some of the quilty things I was seeing. I wanted to be a part of this community so badly. I am technically challenged and I decided to create a blog any way. Blogger made that easy for me.

I read so many blogs, and I bookmarked each one that spoke to me. I must've had about 30 blogs that I checked regularly. This was before Bloglovin' came about.

I started my own blog, and tried to emulate the ones I loved the most. I learned to take pictures and how to post them. I tried to grow my readership as best I could. I had no interest in monetizing my blog, but I tried giveaways and joining blog hops to increase readership. I really wanted to be a part of this community.

I joined Flickr and learned how to use it. I was not as prolific as some, but I did post pictures there, and looked for an on line bee to join. I found a small one, and did that for about a year. Then, I came up with an idea and hosted my own bee for 3 years. It was a lot of work, and I enjoyed it, but after three years I quit. I was diagnosed with cancer shortly after that, so I guess it worked out for the best.
By that time, many bloggers had quit posting regularly anyway. Some made their careers in fabric design and writing books. Others just faded away. It seems that many of the makers moved on in some way. I almost quit blogging too. It was hard to return after cancer. But I decided to stick with it for awhile.

People don't comment much any more. Not like they used to. There are fewer blog hops than there used to be, and most of them are just used to promote a book or fabric line. I still try to blog what I am making fairly regularly. That is what I came to blogging for. I went back and looked at many of my projects and I love seeing how far I've come.

I would love to see a resurgence in crafty blogging. That is where I get so much of my inspiration. Instagram is fine for some. I finally joined, but I don't truly know how to use it.  And it moves at a pace where I feel like I miss a lot. I don't kid myself. Blogging is work. Pictures are imperative and all this takes time. But I would rather see one blog every week or two, than to flash through 30-40 pictures on Instagram. I like reading about the projects and the makers and the backstory. These people are my tribe. I feel like they are friends I just don't see often enough.

Do I think that anyone cares what I think? Maybe, but maybe not. And that's okay. Part of blogging is being able to express yourself on your own platform. If you care to comment, I would love to know how you feel about this topic.

I will be back soon with some more lovely finishes for you. Happy Monday.