Friday, July 15, 2016

Picnic Day

Eileen made this cheerful quilt.  The pattern is called Picnic Day and it was from the Spring 2016 issue of Fons and Porter's Easy Quilts

We auditioned a number of pantos but when "Yo-Yo" entered the race, it was the clear winner.  Eileen left the thread selection up to me and I opted for a Magnfico in a very light grey. 

Eileen selected one of my new Stonehenge backings.  I just love this light grey color and I think it will be very popular.

Such a pretty summer palette!

Monday, July 11, 2016

A pair of pretty quilts and a furry friend

This first quilt was made by Vanda.  We decided that a simple panto was the order of the day because the fabrics and pattern had enough interest.  Vanda selected the "Raindrops" panto.

While I was snapping a few photos I had a bold visitor.  I thought he was going to hop right on the pretty quilt!

This blond rabbit is a very unique color.  All of the others in the neighborhood a dark brown now in the summer.  He is cute and very friendly.

The second quilt of the day was made by Karen.  The was got some freehand quilting as attempting a panto with the loose prairie points would not have been fun.

Hearts, swirls and flowers were the perfect motifs to play with for this little girl's quilt.  And of course the minky shows it all off so well.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Amy's Cross Stitch Heart Quilt

Amy made this charming quilt as a present for a wedding that she is attending this weekend.  Amy left the quilting decisions up to me, but she did request that I quilt "McMillan Est. 2016" somewhere on the quilt.  She asked me to make it bold, as she made a similar quilt for herself and her last name is a little hidden.

I love how the personalization turned out, but I really was worried when I started the stitching.

I started out with a single green thread and the results were awful.  I thought maybe if I added a second line of stitching over top of the first I might be okay.  It looked like I was quilting drunk!  (I didn't take a photo of that.)  But, instead of ripping out my stitches I decided to keep going.

Apparently a lot of thread was just what the quilt needed.  I just kept going over and over it until I was satisfied that it was all filled in.  Phew!

I quilted a feathered hear inside the cross-stiched heart, although it is a little hard to see.  I filled the white background with teardrops and pebbles.

The outer border was crying out for feathers, and I had fun with hears and curls in the other two borders.  

Great job Amy, I'm sure this gift will be treasured.

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Reneta's Chevron Quilt

Reneta made this great chevron quilt out of a couple of Lecien Fabric charm packs that she picked up at Fabriculous, a great shop in Swan River, MB now with a second location in Gimli, MB.

Reneta made this as a wedding present, and since the recipients are Mr. & Mr. I wanted to keep that in mind as I chose my quilting designs.  Reneta is one of my clients who has always told me that she doesn't love feathers, so I thought this was the perfect time to show her that all feathers are not the same.  I call these square feathers, but they may have another name.  

I used Magnifico thread on the whole quilt and it has a nice sheen that complemented some of the fabric that had metallic elements.  I used a steel blue on the solid grey and a bright green on all the printed fabric.  Some continuous curves with a little triangle thrown in was all the printed chevrons needed.

The backing is this fun print call Free Fall by Tula Pink.  It was such a great compliment to the front.

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Cheri's Quarter Sections

Cheri made this sunny version of the Quarter Sections quilt by Highway 10 Designs.  Instead of using a specific collection of fat quarters, Cheri collected fat quarters during her travels to various quilt stores.  Cheri farmed for many years so the "Quarter Section" theme was very meaningful to her.

Cheri chose the "Zephyr" panto and I think it gives the feeling of the wind blowing across the prairie.

I love how Cheri pieced extra blocks into the back.  A nice surprise when you turn the quilt over!

This quilt just makes me smile.  Perfect summer colors.  Great job Cheri!

Friday, July 1, 2016

Pat's Leaf Row Quilt

This is Pat's Leaf Row Quilt and it is the fifth one I have had the pleasure of quilting.  With Pat's fabric choices I decided to do some custom quilting,

I tried to highlight the blocks with some simple design elements and repeat them over the quilt to pull the whole thing together.

I love stitching out the "fat leaf" design in the sashing strips.  I used a variety of background fills just for fun.

A really beautiful quilt, great job Pat!

 We have had some strong winds lately that took out branches and trees in the area as you can see in the background here.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Oops - I bought another Featherweight...

I apparently have officially joined the featherweight addicts club.  Before I owned one I didn't understand why people seemed to amass a collection, but there is just something about them that draws you in!  This machine was made in 1964 in Scotland.  It arrived with all the parts described in the owner's manual.

I found this little cutie for sale online in Nova Scotia.  The price was right for me to take a gamble on it while just seeing a few photos.  I had a good feeling about the sellers and they were willing to ship it.  The first questions that came up was how would I pay for it?  My friend Gail had a genius idea when she bought hers.  She asked the seller to send it C.O.D. through Canada Post.  There is a $7.25 fee for this service, but well worth it for the decreased risk for both buyer and seller. I know Canada Post gets a bad rap sometimes, but I couldn't have been happier. The shipping from Nova Scotia to Manitoba including C.O.D. was $40.72 and it arrived ahead of schedule.

The machine is in very good condition and the case didn't have any odour.  It hardly needed any cleaning, just a good dose of oil as it was dry as a bone.  Her stitch quality is perfect.  The bobbin winds slow at the moment but I think that can be fixed with a little tweaking of the belt.

Here are the two featherweights together.  The black one is a 1952 (you can learn more about her here) and the white a 1964 and  there are a surprising number of differences in how they are constructed. The black machine came with many more feet as standard parts, where they are listed as optional accessories for the white machine. I believe Singer was trying to find some cost saving options to keep the machines affordable and made lots of design changes as well.

 The length of the folding bed is significantly smaller on the white machine.  The side of the machine head definitely resembles more modern machines on the white.  I find the face plate and decals of the black machine more charming.  The white machine are sought after by some because there many, many fewer made.

The spool pin has a spring on the white to help hold the spool in place, and the cord is hard wired instead of being removable with  a plug on the black.  Internally the white has a belt drive and the black is gear driven.  The black one has a metal bottom with a removable felt drip pad, and the white one simply has a piece of Masonite board.

There are many differences in the cases as well besides just the obvious size difference.  The storage tray in the black case is a nice feature.  The green case is more bare bones. The biggest difference is the quality and function of the latches.  The green case is always trying to open up if you carry it just by the handle.

I made this carrying case for my first machine as I was concerned about the age of the handle as I knew I planned to travel with the machine a couple of times a month.  The green case is smaller so fits in it easily and is a necessity for travel.

I put a strap all across the bottom of the carrying case for strength and made the straps long enough to carry on my shoulder.