Friday, July 31, 2015

Crafty Comment Karma and a Poll About Preferred Method of Quilting

Written by Laura Chaney, daughter

It's been another quiet week on the sewing/blogging/crafting front as I'm traveling for my day job again! But there's always time for poll results and the Crafty Comment Karma link-up!

Last week we asked about thread choice for piecing: matching thread, neutral thread or whatever is on hand! Neutral thread won out with 90% of the votes, with the remaining 10% going to Whatever is on hand. Be sure to read the comments on last week's post for great discussion about thread choice for machine piecing versus hand piecing.

This week we're taking a look at how you quilt your quilts (which is a slightly ridiculous sounding phrase but I couldn't think of how else to phrase it!) Please be sure to vote below and add any further thoughts in the comments. If you have a crafty, sewing or quilting blog post be sure to link that up, too!

How do you quilt your quilts?

Hand Quilting
Machine Quilting
Tie the Quilt
It depends on the project
Poll Maker

And now, onto the link up!

Crafty Comment Karma

Friday, July 24, 2015

Crafty Comment Karma and a Poll About Matching Thread

Written by Laura Chaney, daughter

Last week our poll question was about how you piece your quilt: hand, machine or both. Although I had expected machine piecing to win (as it did with 70% of the votes), I was a bit surprised that hand piecing on its own didn't get any votes! As I think about this more, though, I definitely fall in the "I love them both!" category, with my regular machine pieced quilting and my English Paper-Piecing by hand. So maybe this shouldn't have been so unexpected, after all!

This week's poll is about what color of thread we choose when we're piecing a quilt block. I used to always try and match my thread to my fabric exactly, which could be a real challenge when working with a multi-color print! Looking back, I think this was just an excuse to buy all the different thread colors because I loved having them all lined up!

Now-a-days I tend to use a neutral thread, like a beige or grey, for everything. Although I have been known to just grab whatever is in my bobbin and use that if I'm too excited sew to wind a new bobbin.

Luckily, my obsession English Paper-Piecing and my love of making projects from Contain It! English Paper-Pieced Accessories means I still get to collect and use all of my pretty, colorful, matching threads!

When piecing a quilt block, do you match your threads to your fabric or use a neutral thread color?

Matching thread
Neutral thread
Whatever I have on hand or in my bobbin
Poll Maker

And now, on to the link up!

Monday, July 20, 2015

Wisconsin Quilt Expo 2015

Written by Laura Chaney, daughter

Wisconsin Quilt Expo Button

Quick post today to let everyone know that the advance registration for the Wisconsin Quilt Expo is now open! Mom will be giving a lecture each day at 2:30PM. Here's the info from the Advance Registration Guide:

Linda Chaney Contain It! English Paper-Piecing Style Accessories 2:30 P.M. Daily 
Based on their book “Contain It! English Paper-Pieced Style Accessories,” Linda will show you modified English paper-piecing techniques used to create durable, washable, inexpensive and functional one-of-a-kind containers. Beginning sewers as well as those with advanced sewing and quilting skills can enjoy accessorizing any space.
Tickets are already available on the Wisconsin Expo Site.  Will you be at the show?

Friday, July 17, 2015

Crafty Comment Karma and a Poll About Piecing

Written by Laura Chaney, daughter

Oh Internet Friends, where is the love for solids?!? Given that solids were my "gateway fabric" into quilting, I'm just so surprise that not a single person chose solids, although 27% did refuse to make the choice between the two.

This week's poll is about piecing your quilts. Although I do most of my regular piecing by machine, many years ago I took class from Jinny Beyer on hand piecing. It was a super fun class, and I enjoyed one of the main points she made about how hand piecing allows you to take your sewing projects with you everywhere.

This is one of the reasons I love doing English Paper-Piecing and always pack my Yazzi kit with my never ending Grandmother's Flower Garden project in my bag when I travel. Now it's your turn! Weigh in below and share any other thoughts in the comments!

How do you piece your quilts?

Hand piecing
Machine piecing
It depends, I love them both!
Poll Maker

And now on to the link-up!

Crafty Comment Karma

Monday, July 13, 2015

Periodic Table of Sewing Elements from the Scientific Seamstress

Written by Laura Chaney, daughter

Happy Monday! Today's just a quick post to share something Mom sent me a while back that made me smile. The Periodic Table of Sewing Elements created by the Scientific Seamstress.

Periodic Table of Sewing Elements
Created by the Scientific Seamstress.

Be sure to click on the image above to enlarge it so you can read what all of the elements are! As a retired research scientist and a current sewist, I think Mom found this particularly entertaining.

Be sure to check out all the cute patterns that the Scientific Seamstress has to offer on her website!

Friday, July 10, 2015

Crafty Comment Karma and a Poll About Prints or Solids

Written by Laura Chaney, daughter

The results are in! Last week we asked "What's your favorite part of the quilting process?" The "winner" with 43% of the votes was Designing the Quilt!

I'm somehow NOT surprised that "cutting the fabric" wasn't anyone's favorite! To me, that's always the scariest part of the whole process since it can't be undone.

The very first quilting project I made when I first started quilting seriously back in college was a wall-hanging of Amish Shadows. At the time, I was drawn to the beautiful simplicity of solid colored fabrics. Although I use plenty of prints in my quilt making now, solids still hold a very special place in my heart. So today we ask you-prints or solids?

Prints or solids?

Ack! Don't make me choose!
Poll Maker

And now, on to the link up!

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Work in Progress-#43 Basting Blue Hexagons

Written by Laura Chaney, daughter

Well, I've started work on yet ANOTHER new English Paper-Piecing project involving my beloved hexagons. This one is using a charm pack of the Ocean Waters Batiks by Robert Kaufman that I picked up during Sample Sale at Quilt Market.

Mom was gullible kind enough to help me by cutting them down into the 2" squares I needed to sew my 3/4" hexagons from Paper Pieces. I basted a few of these back in May when I was traveling for my day job, but this week I've definitely been working on them in earnest.

Basted Blue Hexagons

I don't know how many I'l need since this project is designed only in my head right now, but I know it'll take me a while so I'd better just keep on stitching (while watching a little Battlestar Galactica, of course!) Linking up with Sew Fresh Quilts and Freshly Pieced!

Today we're also celebrating Mom's (Linda) birthday! If you have a moment, please wish her a festive day in the comments! 

Happy Birthday, Momcat!

Linda Chaney

Monday, July 6, 2015

Needle Tatting-Tatted Hearts with Split Rings

Written by Linda Chaney, mother

Needle tatted hearts Prairie Sewn Studios

Laura and I visited the display sponsored by the Heartland Lace Guild during our trip to the Paducah AQS show in April. They also were selling tatted related items and I found this pattern "Tatted Hearts: Tatting Pattern Nos. 4-6 Using Split-Ring Technique" by Diane M. Whisnant.

Needle Tatted Hearts pattern

I considered these patterns a challenge because of the number of split rings used to create the design and the fact that I'm a needle tatter, not a shuttle tatter.  As usual, I was up for the challenge and was determined to successfully make these hearts.

Pattern 4, with the daisy ring in the center, was not too difficult to complete.

Needle tatted heart with daisy chain

I was definitely encouraged to continue with Pattern 6. It was a bit more difficult because of the number of chains and how they tatted in the lower center of the pattern.  But I succeeded!

Needle tatted heart split chain

Pattern 5 became my nightmare!  There were  lots of split rings, which meant I had to unthread and thread the tatting needle to create every "circle" in the center of the design. In addition, the length of thread needed on the eye end of the needle was about 6-7 feet.  Trying to prevent tangles in the thread on the eye end and keeping the tatting in the correct position as I maneuvered through the pattern was a monumental challenge.  But I persevered and was quite pleased with the end product - all things considered.  Perhaps this pattern is a bit easier using the shuttle!

Needle tatted heart chain

The hearts may not be perfect, but I'm pleased with them all and more importantly, I was able to read the pattern,  make these hearts using my needle, and learn more about issues with split rings and needle tatting.

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Happy Independence Day 2015!

Mom made this festive Independence Day cube with leftover blocks from a Stack'n'Whack quilt. The cube from Contain It! English Paper-Pieced Style Accessories is the perfect container to use orphan blocks like this!

Friday, July 3, 2015

Crafty Comment Karma and a Poll About Your Favorite Part of the Quilting Process

Written by Laura Chaney, daughter

Last week we asked, "How do you baste your quilts?" The results are in, and with a bit of variety, including two ways I hadn't thought of (Elmer's washable glue and no basting needed as a quilting frame is being used).

How do you baste your quilts? Poll results

This week, we're asking about your FAVORITE part of the quilting process. Even if you love multiple parts of making a quilt, just choose your TOP favorite for this survey.

What's your favorite part of the quilting process?

Designing the quilt
Cutting fabric
Piecing the top
Sewing on the binding
Poll Maker

And now, onto the link-up!
Crafty Comment Karma

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

DIY Swedish Roller Window Shades

Written by Linda Chaney, mother

DIY Swedish Roller Shades

I needed window shades for my sewing room.  Now that summer had finally arrived, I had to block the afternoon sun streaming into the room without darkening the room.  I had some indoor/outdoor fabric that was going to be used originally on the patio but was repurposed for Swedish roller shades (think Bamboo roll up shades) in my sewing room.

The fabric was just over 54" wide, and I needed the full 54" to cover the windows.

DIY Swedish Roller Shades

The length was cut and the sides were trimmed to allow 1/4" foldover to the wrong side and held in place with 1/4" double fusible tape (my favorite Steam-a-Seam 2!). The top and bottom were also turned under 1/4" and fused with 1/4" double fusible tape.

DIY Swedish Roller Shades

The top of the fabric was then stapled to a closet pole that had been cut to fit the inside of the windows.

DIY Swedish Roller Shades

Eye hooks were evenly spaced and screwed into the closet pole.

DIY Swedish Roller Shades

In addition, at each end, a screw was place to prevent the rod from rotating once it was in position on the closet pole hangers.
DIY Swedish Roller Shades

Cording was tied to the eye hooks, wrapped around the front of the fabric to the back, and threaded through the eye hooks to the end of the rod.  This was done in three locations - center and one on each side of the center.

DIY Swedish Roller Shades

On the bottom, a pocket was created to hold 1-3/4" PVC pipe.  This provided the weight to "hold" the fabric down when unrolled and the support to roll the shade up when not in use.

DIY Swedish Roller Shades

The shades have been quite successful in preventing the intense heat from invading the sewing room and still allow some light to pass through.

DIY Swedish Roller Shades