Monday, December 22, 2014

Mystery Link Up - Clue #4

Clue 4 is done!  I also went back and finished the rest of Clue 2, so I'm all caught up to date at the moment.  This week's clue was much less labor-intensive than the first and second one.  I'm really wondering how these blocks are all going to wind up together!  This mystery is definitely mysterious so far.

This was a cold, gray weekend spent indoors, so it was a productive one in the sewing room.  I finished up the Primitive Gatherings ornaments:
They are signed, dated and hanging on the tree. I also finished the free pincushion that was included
 in orders from their Christmas Open House.  I filled it with sand, and it turned out pretty cute.  I may make more of these.  I forgot how to do the flystitch Lisa designed, so mine has a feather stitch instead. 

Mix and Match, the quilt I started in a Labor Day Quilt Along, is quilted and bound.  I tried some new free motion motifs on this one - dragonflies and flowers.  My goal for this year, and for 2015, is to improve my free motion quilting skills and finish some of these quilt tops!  I seem to be lots better at piecing than finishing.

So that's my weekend!  This week will include lots of Christmas festivities, so probably not much sewing room time.   That's OK - I am looking forward to the time spent with my family!  Hope you all have a Merry Christmas.

Monday, December 15, 2014

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas!

Christmas decorating was in full swing in this house last weekend!  The big tree is up, decorations are out, and the Cathedral Mouse tree is up.  I added the Packer Fan Mouse to my collection this year.
A cute mouse complete with beer can and teeny cheesehead!  The church ladies do a great job with the mouse details, don't they?  A group at St. Paul's Cathedral makes hundreds of these mice for sale each year.  I've been collecting these for 22 years, so I've got a tree full now.
It's always fun to get these out and put them up each year.

I've been working on my Quiltville mystery, too! 

This picture shows all 100 of the Clue 3, and 70 of Clue 2.  I've got to go back and finish Clue 2, but that's going pretty well and I should be caught up by Friday, when we get the next clue.  I'm wondering how well these colors will all play together in the finished quilt, but we'll see when we get there!  I trust Bonnie to come up with a good plan.  I've been trying all her sewing and pressing techniques, and I have to say that these eight-patches for Clue 3 went together pretty slick using her method.  I guess we can always learn something new even if we've been quilting a long time.

I would have gotten more sewing done, but I got distracted by these:
These are the free Christmas patterns from Primitive Gatherings.  They are cut out and fused down, but no stitchery has occurred yet.  I always love their patterns and have several on my big tree.  You can find the free pattern here if you want to make a set for yourself!

Monday, December 8, 2014

It's a Mystery!

The first mystery is where I've been since my last post on September 30!  I don't know - October came and went in a flash; November came and went in a flash, and here we are a week into December already.  I've been too busy to blog, I guess!

The second mystery is the Grand Illusion mystery on Quiltville.  Are you joining in?  The first clue came out on Black Friday, and we're on our second clue now.  The colors this year were inspired by the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island.  I've been to Mackinac Island twice, and would love to go again. I haven't been to the Grand Hotel, but that is definitely on my bucket list for the next time I get there.

Here's my Clue 2 prepped and ready to sew:
I love these mini design boards made of foamcore, batting and leftover binding strips.  They really help me stay organized when putting together these units.  The tutorial for making the design boards is here.

Clue 1 is done, and about 40 of Clue 2 are done.  I have until Friday if I want to stay caught up.

This is 100 Broken Dish units with aqua, pink, black and yellow, along with 80 half-square triangles for use later on, and about 40 of the diamond units.  The diamond units in Clue 2 were very challenging for me, but the instructions are excellent, and my units are getting better as I go along.  After 100, I hope to have mastered this technique!  Bonnie's instructions are really good, and I feel like I'm learning a lot.  These colors are a stretch for me, but I'm enjoying using something different and it's a nice way to brighten up the gray of December.

What else have I done lately?  I made a cute birthday placemat for my mom:
This was a fun free pattern on the Bee in My Bonnet blog.  She always has very cute ideas.  I'd like to make more of this one - it was very fun to put together.  It looks like I'm into bright colors lately!

I got three things back from the framer, too.  Two were cross stitch pieces made this summer.
Both of these were patterns bought at Country Sampler.  The one on the right was from the Grand Old Flag gathering, and was a companion piece to the Civil War sampler we did last year.  I had this one framed the same way, and they look great together.

I'd love to show you a picture of the third piece, but it seems to be upside down and I can't turn it in Blogger, so that will have to wait until next time.  I hope it won't be 2+ months before I blog again!  This mystery quilt is keeping me busy and I hope to post my progress weekly.