Monday, September 29, 2014

Momcat Monday-Needle Tatting #5 (Treble Clef).

Written by Linda Chaney, mother

Both of my children played musical instruments. Laura played piano and oboe and my son, Bill, played a bit of piano, baritone, trombone and viola. When I saw the Treble Clef tutorial on Le cose della anto, I first thought that this should be a breeze.  After all, it's almost all chains! 

Needle Tatting Treble Clef

Tatting the double stitch on the needle was simple. Counting the number of double stitches was no problem (unless I did it late at night and my eyes were tired). Getting the same tension on all stitches throughout the pattern was a bit more difficult! There were several tries at this pattern until I finally got it right. It may not be perfect, but I was happy with the results and also have developed a very healthy respect for tatting long chains!

Momcat Monday
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Friday, September 26, 2014

Festive for Friday-Facebook Finds.

Written by Laura Chaney, daughter

Festive for Friday

This week for Festive for Friday we're sharing three of the pattens that came across our Facebook page lately. All of this are free at the time I'm publishing this, and although I haven't tried any of them yet they've certainly caught my eye as something I need to try! 

This DIY Tiny Cat Tent. My cats need one of these. I need one of these. EVERYONE needs one of these. The best part? It's made out of a t-shirt, hanger and cardboard. 

DIY Cat Tent
Tiny Cat Tent from

This Color of My Heart Quilt Pattern from the Fat Quarter shop! It's free as part of their National Sewing Day celebration. I've seen the finished block popping up on several blogs; it's definitely been added to my to-do list. 

Color of My Heart
Color of My Heart Quilt Pattern

Bonnie Browning has shared a free downloadable pattern for the Iowa Star Block on the American Quilter's Society website. It's part of her collection of Vintage blocks. 

Iowa Star Block
Iowa Star Block

Be sure to follow us on Facebook to see what fun things we find throughout the week! 

What's made your week festive? 

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Work in Progress Wednesday-#25.

Written by Linda Chaney, mother

Yes, I have also done some sewing this summer! One flannel quilt can't be revealed until after Christmas since it is a present for a family member. The second quilt that has been pieced I call Evangeline's Pond.

Evangeline's Pond-Jump Ring Quilt

It is the result of three events that happened in a two week period.  First, I saw Jenny Doan's video from Missouri Star Quilt Company on the Jump Ring Quilt. It's basically a modified snowball block; the block isn't square but rectangular in shape. The quilt can be made with one jelly roll and 2-1/2 yards of a background fabric.

Second, I ventured to one of my favorite quilt stores, Country Traditions in Fremont, NE, with my friend Christina and found a jelly roll by Moda - Enchanted Pond by Holly Taylor - on clearance. Immediately I thought this would be interesting to use to make the Jump Ring Quilt.

Evangeline's Pond-Jump Ring Quilt

Third, the background fabric designed by Mark Lipinski (Northcott Chester Gardens) was found by a young friend, Evangeline, on a trip to the Cosmic Cow in Lincoln, NE.

Evangeline's Pond-Jump Ring Quilt

The pattern sews up quickly. The only change I made was to watch the direction of ironing seams so I could "nest" intersections when I sewed rows together. My ideas for quilting the center blue rectangles include dragonflies, butterflies, frogs and cattails - critters and plant life commonly seen on ponds. Perhaps a tatted dragonfly or butterfly will also appear. I've opted not to add a border and will bind it with the "solid" purple Moda fabric found in the quilt.

What have you been working on lately? Be sure to check out all of our Work in Progress Wednesdays! 

Monday, September 22, 2014

Momcat Monday-Needle Tatting #4.

Written by Linda Chaney, mother

I continue my tatting instruction learning to use two different colored threads with one needle.  My first project is from my Italian source Le Codes dellaanto and was an excellent introduction into this technique.

Needle Tatting

I used vividly different colored threads, which are knotted together at one end, so I can see clearly how the design is tatted and how the change of color appears in the pattern. The rings are all red and the chains are all variegated; the red needle thread was used in all rings and chains.  This was a very easy pattern to follow and could be modified by adding beads to the stitches.

The directions and samples for the second pattern are by Stephanie Wilson. For a novice tatter, I found the directions to be excellent.  Colors for the needle thread and actual color were indicated in each step. Again, the two colors are tied together; however, the needle thread is constantly changing. I was pleased with the results and may make more for the Christmas holidays.

Needle Tatting Candy Cane
Front of the candy cane.

Needle Tatting Candy Cane
Back of the candy cane.

With a bit of stiffening, this pattern would make a great ornament.  It would also look good on the sides of our containers!  Hmmmm, is this another project in the works?

I mentioned stiffening the completed tatted project.  Any suggestions for what you prefer to use to stiffen tatted pieces?  I've read about several possibilities - diluted glue, starch, finger nail polish and the old fashion sugar/starch recipe - to name a few.  I haven't decided yet what I'll use but am open to ideas!

Momcat Monday
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Friday, September 19, 2014

Festive for Friday-Inspiration from Disneyland.

Written by Laura Chaney, daughter

As I mentioned in our post for Work in Progress Wednesday I spent the last four days in Disneyland! It was an absolutely amazing trip, and I cannot wait to go back!

As we walked around the two parks (Disneyland and California Adventure) I kept my eye out for mosaics and artwork that might be inspiration for quilting and sewing! Here's what I found in between riding Space Mountain six times.

mosaic tile
Mosaic tile outside of the Little Mermaid Ride-California Adventure.

mosaic tile
Bathroom wall in Cars Land-California Adventure.

mosaic tile
Pillar outside-California Adventure. 

mosaic tile
mosaic tile
Mosaic on Buena Vista-California Adventure.

mosaic tile
Mosaic tile on a pillar-California Adventure.

Mosaic wall-California Adventure.

stained glass sliding doors
Stained glass sliding doors-Grand Californian Hotel. 

mosaic tile
Mosaic tile-Grand Californian Hotel.

World of Color California Adventure
World of Color-California Adventure.
I really am rather sad to be back in the real world after four days of fun. I was genuinely surprised at exactly how MUCH I enjoyed the trip, and how excited I was to meet characters and immerse myself in all things Disney. We're already planning the next trip! 

Eeyore was also sad I had to leave. 

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Work in Progress Wednesday-#24.

Written by Laura Chaney, Daughter

EPP Project

I'm still working on the same project I was for last week's Work in Progress Wednesday. Mostly because I spent the last four days in DISNEYLAND! That's right, now I'm a REAL California Resident. ;)

Making off-the-cuff projects is still a challenge for me. Mom is MUCH better at it, but it's been fun to mess around with this new idea. Fingers crossed on getting it finished up this week!

Check out all of our Work In Progress Wednesday posts!

Linking up at Freshly Pieced!

Monday, September 15, 2014

Momcat Monday-The Lint Roller.

Written by Linda Chaney, Mother

Today I share a simple tool, yet one of my favorites...

Lint Roller

  • Use on design board to remove lint and threads
  • Use on ironing board to remove threads
  • Use on quilt to remove stray threads
  • Can also use to clean lamp shades - quite effective!
  • May also need to use on your own clothing to remove those threads!

What are some of your favorite "unusual" notions in your quilting and sewing space?

Friday, September 12, 2014

Festive for Friday-Quilting and the Apocalypse.

Written by Laura Chaney, Daughter

After quilting, one of my favorite hobby's is reading books. When I was a kid my parents had to implement a "no reading before school" policy because I kept reading instead of getting ready to leave the house! I read a pretty wide variety genres, mostly in fiction, and one of my all time favorites is post-apocalyptic fiction.

One of the blogs I read occasionally, Chicago Now, had a great post last week titled "Where are the Quilter's in a post apocalyptic world?"  The post is hilarious, talking about how quilter's would help get the world back on its feet after whatever disaster has befallen it. It made me think about other reasons quilter's would be the perfect companions if the end of the world comes.

1. Rotary cutters. Could there be a more menacing site that a gaggle of ladies with a sharp rotary cutter in each hand, ready to defend their family (and their stash!) from marauders?

Rotary Cutter
photo credit: mbaylor via photopin cc

2. The ability to use every last scrap of something to make something awesome. Patchwork quilts, crazy quilts, crumb quilts, string quilts. Quilter's don't throw anything away because it's always useful.

Fabric scraps

3. Patience and perseverance. Because you're going to be doing a lot of hand sewing. Plus fighting off the zombies or plague or whatever has caused the end of the world.

hand sewing

4. Skills. Like Kathy pointed out, quilter's (and all sewers in general) have skills that would be downright useful in a post-apocalyptic world. Everyone needs clothes to wear and sewing produces a product that could be sold or traded.

quilted container

5. A pre-made stockpile...of fabric. Also known as "the stash." Because if the end of the world is coming the last thing you'd want to do is run out of fabric.

fabric stash

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Work in Progress Wednesday-#23.

Written by Laura Chaney, Daughter

Do you go through up and down periods of sewing? I sure do. This week I'm definitely starting an upward swing which is super exciting! In the middle of the day on Monday I suddenly had an idea that I just HAD to try! So Monday night I settled in with a little School of Rock on cable and started in. 

charm square and rotary cutter

two inch squares on a rotary mat

I don't think anyone will be surprised that it's another English Paper Piecing project. I'm so excited to see how it turns out! 

English paper pieced hexagons

This lasted for a while, and then I was waylaid by Friday the Cat. Kitty snuggles are always a welcome break from sewing. I'm hoping to have the finished project (it's a little one) done to share next week!

 Be sure to check out all of our Work in Project Wednesday posts

Linking Up!
 WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Monday, September 8, 2014

National Sewing Month.

Written by Laura Chaney, Daughter

Did you know that September is National Sewing Month? I completely forgot it was until I was catching up on blogs over the weekend. 

We'll have a couple of posts this month about why both Mom and I love sewing (and quilting!) I'm also hoping to use this month to help get some energy into FINISHING a project. Or maybe even more than one! 

How are you going to celebrate National Sewing Month? 

Friday, September 5, 2014

Festive for Friday-End of Summer Recap.

Written by Laura Chaney Gerth, Daughter

As I wrote in the last Work Life in Progress Wednesday post, August is a crazy month for me at work. When you work at a University, summer ends as soon as the month rolls into August and we get ready for the students to come back. Here are a few pictures from the last few weeks that show some of the things that have been keeping me busy and out of trouble!

One of our student assistants was drawing caricatures of staff, and this was mine. Apparently I spent most of orientation clutching my coffee cup and talking. That sounds about right...      

Girl with Coffee Drawing

Joy at the end of International Student Orientation. We'd been going for about six loooong days at this point and were REALLY happen to be done!

International Student Orientation

The week after orientation I found a new fabric store! It was like a prize for getting through August! Seriously though, I'm now looking for a reason to go and partake of this beautiful wall of Kona Cotton. 

Kona Cotton

Two weeks into the semester, means it's time to let off some steam! Kicked off the beginning of Labor Day Weekend early with a trip to Urban Putt in downtown San Francisco. It's an indoor miniature golf course that is totally San Francisco themed. It was awesome and I can't wait to go there with the whole family next time everyone is in town! 

Urban Putt

My college friend, Brandon, came out to SF for the long weekend. I love the chance to play tourist in the amazing city I now live in so we had lots of fun running around town. We went to a Giant's baseball game, the Exploratorium and walked a TON along the bay. 

I'm not entirely sure why he puts up with me, but I like to think I'm entertaining at the very least! 

And last, but not least... the students being back means that the salad bar in the cafeteria is open again. I promise there's some lettuce under there somewhere. Yay for salad!

What's been festive for you as Summer has drawn to a close?