Sunday, September 14, 2014

Harvest Happenings with OFG!

Just another week and fall will be here!  That means it's time for a new celebration with the Old Farmhouse Gathering Team!  I've created a couple of new items for Halloween just for you!  

Meet BOO, my ghost make do display.  Boo is a great little piece that isn't too scary to show off whereever you need a little Halloween character!

My cute little black cat, Trouble, is weighted down inside his burlap bag to sit perfectly on a small shelf.  And I've stitched on a fun vintage tag to wish you a "Merry Halloween" on his burlap bag.

Check out all of the team's new creations for this special celebration by typing HHCOFG in the search area at!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Quick Column Quilts Blog Tour - Sandy Beach Blotter

So glad you've stopped by for my turn on the blog tour for Nancy Zieman's new book, Quick Column Quilts!  Even with all of the eye candy in this book, finding that perfect project to make took me no time, and it's one that will even have an important purpose!  

Our recent project has been creating my daughter's new beachy bedroom (see post below), and The Dotted Columns Wall Hanging was the perfect size to add a blotter style quilt to the beautiful desk her dad made.

The book's gorgeous version is made with silk dupioni, which illuminates vibrant appliqued circles scattered about in delicate balance with a calm column background.

I made my quilt much more monocromatic and, in keeping with those stand out circles, added a few subtle messages of encouragement too.  The simplicity of arranging the scattered columns (notice how no seams need to line up!) gives artistic latitude to those circles, which kept calling out to me to say something!

With very specific colors that were approved by the teen boss, the base columns were done with sand and wood tones, and pale blues and white solids were used for the circles.

To make the blotter more rigid than a regular quilt, I used stiff interfacing rather than cotton batting, and assembled the columns using the "quilt as you go" technique. 

Deciding on the words to stamp onto the appliqued circles actually took longer than making this entire quilt!  Using some typewriter style font stamps, I gave each circle a little whimsy by not lining all the letters up perfectly.  I fused each circle on before stitching, although Nancy's technique in her book would have worked much nicer for more smoother satin stitching.  To me, they look like bubbles of water on a sandy santuary.

I loved how Nancy's book has so many visual diagrams for cutting and piecing each step of the quiltmaking process for precise results. Even the most beginning sewing student can easily follow along and achieve great one of a kind creations!  

To give a bit of a feminine touch, I finished the border by adding a petite lace edging around a very skinny bias binding.

The result is a functional quilt that finished up super fast which leads guessed it...more time for sewing!  But most of all, she loved it! 

Nancy is hosting a fantastic giveaway including several copies of this book, and all you have to do to be eligible is to leave a comment on her blog post here.  There are 27(!) blogs featuring creations from the Quick Column Quilts book to help inspire you, so please follow along and check out these talented artists and their creations:

Date                  Link

09/04/14         Nancy Zieman
09/05/14         Quilt Taffy and  Simple Simon & Co.
09/06/14         Diary of a Quilter  and Stitchin Jenny
09/07/14         A Woman a Day  and Craizee Corner   
09/08/14         Jina Barney DesignzLilac Lane Patterns, and Totally Stitchin' 
09/09/14         Esch House Quilts and The Cottage Mama
09/10/14         Designs in Machine Embroidery and Pat Sloan
09/12/14         Happy Valley PrimitivesDoohikey Designs, and Quilt in a Day
09/13/14         Quilt Dad and Just Arting Around
09/14/14         Lazy Girl Designs and  Marie-Madeline Studio
09/15/14         Always Expect Moore  and Polka Dot Chair
09/16/14         Amy Lou Who Sews and Riley Blake Designs
09/17/14         Indygo Junction and Amy's Creative Side

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Teen Serenity

 Whoohoo, it's back to school time, and I'm more than ready for the peace and solitude to create!  Hope your summer was fun!

We worked on several projects during the break, and the bedroom of my daughter, Nicole, was the top priority.  The days of bubble gum pink walls and a full meadow mural that I hand painted are now gone and replaced with a cool blue paint aptly named "sea inspired."  We kept with the block of squares along the main wall with the white paint as the "grout" line, replacing the pink tones with hues of the wall paint mixed with white paint to give a nice graduated tone.  I also added a few light brown squares to keep with the three colors now sprinkled throughout her room, blue, brown and white.

Her new teen bedroom is quite grown up; however, she still has this big white bear keeping a reading corner chair warm!  We added paper lanterns above, white sheers for the window and white accent shelves throughout.  Of course, this retreat also included a large fish tank that rests on her dresser...what's more tranquil than watching fish?

One project that she's quite proud of is the canvas art.  She purchased several squares of canvas and found a variety of sea shapes to create with natural materials.  She's still working on completing several more, but I wanted to show off her starfish, made with gravel bits (extra from the fish tank purchase).  It turned out just perfect!

The bed covering is a white duvet cover that I purchased and unfortunately was only available in a queen size.  So I turned it inside out and stitched up the sides to fit her bed and tucked her former bed quilt inside.  This worked great as I made her first bed quilt and wasn't ready to give it away just yet!  On her nightstand, she purchased a wood lantern with glass sides and decorated with sand, fish netting, sea shells and sea glass.  She found the "N" at Hobby Lobby in their clearance section, and the color perfectly matched her wall tone.

We will be accenting her window with the fish netting and glass balls and eventually adding more features.  She loves the results and it's made a real difference in how tidy her room is staying since the change...go figure!