Tuesday, February 11, 2014

A Journey To A New Trick for English Paper Piecing!

Hello! Recent questions have come up about using starch with English Paper Piecing. Here is the link with my original post about this. Click HERE to get to the post. It is a summary of my journey of English Paper Piecing...ie, the lazy English Paper Piecer! Haha

Just because every post deserves a picture, here is one you have not seen of my booth. This is the EPP "department", which as you see also blends into the wool "department"! Haha!

I hope that post link above helps the new followers understand the process! Let me know if you have questions! I teach this and several other methods to quilters at guilds and shops. It's great to spread the joy of Engish Paper Piecing!

Take care,

Missie

 

Monday, February 10, 2014

Making Progress!

I've done a bit more stitching tonight! This little striped quilt is coming right along.

I've sewn the stripes together first and now I will sew the rows together. Much less concentration is required about which seam to sew next when I do it this way. Sometimes with hexies, you jump around a bit with having to hit all of the seams and sometimes they are not right next to each other! It's easy to miss one. This way, I keep control and sewing the seams is nice and thoughtless!

My needle is bent really well now! It's almost bent too much! I grabbed a smaller sized miliner to stitch these pieces together. This one is a size 11. My fingers have not held an 11 for a long while because I have not been able to thread the size 11 with the Aurafil thread I do appliqué with. And the 11 is too hard for me to thread with Bottom Line. Of course, my eyes are not what they used to be! I suppose my fingers are used to firmly grabbing that thicker size 9 or 10 needle that I use most of the time, thus bending this one fast! Who all likes a bent needle? Makes it easy to hold onto. I have met many people who think a bent needle needs to go in the trash, but that means it's just getting warmed up if you ask me!

 

I am trying some new thread on this quilt. Shown above is a red Invisifil from Wonderfil Threads. It is so nice as you can see above. The stitches are nearly invisible! This is a 100 weight thread.

Wonderfil has also sent me some heavier weight thread called Deco Bob. This is an 80 weight. It also sews very nicely. You can see a close up of the stitches below. The ivory pieces are sewn together with this one. You can see a few stitches on the left, but the others are pretty invisible also! I think I like this thread for sewing these seams. These were all sewn without the papers inside. For those of you who may be new to the blog, I prepare my EPP with starch most of the time. It makes for perfect shapes! At times I do use the papers still, so I will test this thread WITH the papers also.

Just wanted to say Hey and show you these threads! Have a great rest of the week!

Take care,

Missie

 

Friday, February 7, 2014

Found Some Time For Stitching!

I have been overwhelmed with office work recently and finally, I found some time for Stitching! It has been too long since I have held a needle! Before the Super Bowl I decided to prepare a small stack of little projects that have needed finishing for a long time.



This little Bethlehem Star Pincushion has been dragged all over the Midwest, then packed away until the next trip. Along the way I lost a few pieces, so I've prepared them using my starch method for English Paper Piecing. Finally I have finished putting it together and I hope to make it onto a pincushion today!

Next, in the pile was this little EPP strip which needed 3 more pieces to make it whole. It has been shown in progress many times...now I can move on to the next step!

These hexies below are EPP pieces I've made while doing the demo in the booth. I have just as many left over as you see here! I thought this size would make good mug rugs. I have stabilized them on fusible interfacing scraps. No pins to keep track of and very portable. Just a touch with the tip of the iron to the center and it holds them right in place until I am ready to grab that piece and sew! A little tug and it comes right off. Works really great. These interfacing pieces are reusable a few times. I will do this for the next pincushion so I don't loose any pieces! If you sew appliqué pieces down one at a time, this might be a good method to keep track of those pieces.

So far I have two little mug rugs stitched together. Yippee! It takes hardly any time to stitch them together once the pieces are prepared quickly with the starch. Next, I will add a bit of batting and a back and they will be ready to go! Seeing them in the picture makes me think this would make a cute pin cushion as well!

The next block in the pile was this heart made of hexies. These pieces were also made while doing my demo. I made most of these red and white hexies while in Lee's Summit, MO and Oklahoma City. I wonder if I have any new visitors from those shows checking in today? You can see I need a few more pieces, but you get the idea of the heart I hope!

After sewing a few pieces together, I decided I am not the hexie heart kind of gal, so I did some shifting and decided to go with red and white stripes. I think this will be a cute little display to show while vending in Independence, MO next weekend over Valentine's Day. Then I can use it in my home on my wall of quilts or even during the Christmas season next year. One can never have too many mini quilts! Haha! If you are headed to the Calico Cut Ups Show in Independence, MO, please come say hello to me!

I see the lower left corner that I have stitched together is a bit cockeyed, but you get the idea! See that little candy cane I layed out on the right with a few extra pieces? This will be a cute ornament for my tree next year!

The Olympics have officially begun. Enjoy the games for the next few weeks and keep your stitching handy! We are still having super cold temps and will get a few more inches of snow today! Stay warm and stitch as much as you can!

Take care,

Missie

 

Saturday, February 1, 2014

For The Ones I Love...<3

We've had a busy week in this household with flu's and such! Even Ginger seems to be a little blue...I couldn't get her to wake up to smile for you! She is so relaxed in her bed. Earlier she jumped up on the couch to help Katie feel better...snuggled right up next to her to give her some love! She knows she isn't allowed on the couches, but since she was on a quilt, I let her be next to the one she was lovin' on at the moment.

So glad the weekend is here and we can look forward to brighter days this coming week! Last night, while playing nurse to my hubs and daughter, I made this little pin cushion. It was super fast and super easy...ready for the one(s) I love to see this morning and know I hope they feel better soon!

 

You can make this pin cushion if you'd like...just jot down these instructions or come back when you are ready to sew. Draw a 4" square onto freezer paper. Draw and X from corner to corner on the paper. Cut it apart and also cut on the diagonal lines. Iron 2 freezer paper triangles to purple wool and 2 freezer paper triangles to blue wool. Cut them out nice and neat.

Then draw a heart on freezer paper about 1 1/2" long (or email me and I will send it to you!) on freezer paper and then iron it onto red wool and cut out on the line. Cut a red wool square 4 3/4" and set aside. Cut a tan wool square 5" and set aside.

Hold one blue and one purple square wrong sides together and whip stitch one of the short sides together. Pull them slightly taught so they hold the fabric together well.

Repeat for the other two triangles. Lay them out first to make sure you will be sewing the correct seams together. Then sew the two pieces together the same way, making an hour glass block with the whip stitch seams facing the right side. Lay this pieced square on top of the red wool square and whip stitch the edges being careful to keep it square as you sew. Trim the red wool square a scant 1/4" away from the hour glass block.

 

Next, place the red heart in the center and whip stitch it in place leaving a straight side open to stuff with a cotton ball. It only takes one! Tuck all the cotton in nice and neat and finish stitching the heart in place.

Finally lay the pin cushion top onto the tan square. Again, whip stitch the edge onto the tan wool, keeping it nice and straight as you stitch. Leave part of one side open, stuff slightly and finish sewing the pin cushion closed. Trim the tan wool about 1/4" away from the red square. Now you can think of the One You Love as you display this pincushion this Valentine season.

I hope you are staying warm! We're supposed to get some snow today! Then maybe 8”+ next week! It's definitely winter around here!

Take care,

Missie