Wednesday, April 1, 2015

It's A Wrap!

"Down in the Garden" is officially a flimsy!

Thank you all for confirming what I had initially planned with respect to adding another border to my quilt.

My original plan was to add a 5" red border, wide enough to scallop the edge however, when I saw it after I had added the sashing and cornerstones, I was undecided.  That's when I asked for your help.  

So instead of a 5" outside border, I added a 1" turquoise border first and then finished with the 4" red border.  I'll decide whether I will scallop it once it comes back from the quilter.

I'm really happy with the way it turned out...even though it is virtually unrecognizable when compared with the original design.

You're never going to guess what I'm going to be working on next...not in a million years!  

Stay tuned and I'll let you know really soon.

Happy stitching!

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

A flimsy...I think!

I think I should rename it my "Road to Recovery" quilt because I spent many hours stitching away while I was housebound over the past two and a half months, recovering from hip surgery. It definitely made the hours pass by quickly and helped me keep my sanity.

They're not the best photos but my "Down in the Garden" quilt is a flimsy...I think! 

I'm thrilled with the way it turned out but I'm undecided as to whether I should add a final red border or leave it as it is.

What do you think...leave it as it is or add another border?

Happy stitching!

Notes to Mary Stiles and Pauline Cabana:

I'm sorry I could not reply to your comments because you came up as "no-reply" bloggers so I'm answering your questions here.

My friend Julie in Australia bought the patterns from an Australian shop and sent them on to me.  The "Down in the Garden" design was first released as a ten month BOM by Leanne Beasley, an Australian designer, but can now be purchased as a complete set.  You can either Google the pattern by name or contact Leanne directly HERE.  

Yes, I use a VERY lightweight iron-on fusible stabilizer on the back of my stitched designs. Not only does it add stability to the stitched block but it makes the block more opaque to enable travelling between stitched elements without having to tie off threads.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Sunny Sunday Musings

Another 5" of snow fell overnight but the sun is out, the skies are blue and it's not that cold out so hopefully it'll all be gone by the end of the day...the new stuff, I mean.  The remnants of our many winter nor'easter storms will be here for a while yet but hopefully not too long as robins have been spotted in the area.

Yesterday was a busy stitching day.  

I finished appliqueing and embellishing all the blocks for my Down in the Garden quilt except for the one pictured below which I'll complete sometime today.

Next I'll be adding sashing and cornerstones followed by a final outside border and then it'll be done!

I have so many projects on my "to do" list, I don't know what I'm going to tackle next!

In the meantime, soup is simmering on the stove (the aroma is heavenly)...

and the kitchen floor is washed so I can now lay claim to the rest of the day as mine to do whatever tickles my fancy.

First I'm going to relax and read the Home Tours edition of Country Sampler magazine...

and then you know where I'll be...and you don't even have to guess!

Happy stitching!

Friday, March 27, 2015

Still plugging away!

I finished piecing the nine blocks for my Down in the Garden quilt.

I'm going to stay the course until I can officially call it a flimsy.  I still have to stitch the appliqued elements to some of the blocks and I want to change and add a few more things that are different from the original design.

This is a photo of Leanne Beasley's original design.  By the time I am finished mine, it will look entirely different from hers.

"Down in the Garden" by Leanne Beasley
I'm absolutely thrilled with the fabrics I used from Kim Diehl's Vintage Farmhouse line.  I "found" them after I had chosen the colors of floss to use for the stitchery blocks.  It has turned out to be the perfect 'marriage made in heaven'.


Allow me to explain.

If I can share with you a little knowledge or offer a piece of advice that I used to share with my art/painting students and that is if you stick with colors that you like and that are within your comfort zone, you will very seldom go wrong when it comes to selecting the colors and fabrics in your quilting endeavors.  

I used the same palette of 10 colors in all my artwork for over 20 years.  Rarely, if ever, did I stray from them.  Because I liked and was familiar with the colors and knew how well they worked and interacted with one another, no matter what the subject matter, everything was always in harmony.

The same principle applies when building your stash.  If you stay with the colors that you like and are comfortable with, everything should coordinate, no matter who the designer or manufacturer might be.  Problems occur when one tries to stray from that comfort zone.  Just ask me!!!

Kim Diehl's color family is very similar to the one I used when painting and that is why my choice of thread colors...even though I purchased and started stitching the blocks long before I stumbled across her fabrics...go so well together.

I still have lots of hand work to do before I can start to assemble the quilt top. Thankfully, I'm in no rush and have no deadlines to meet.  

And I thought that I would be finished by today.

Wishful thinking!

Happy stitching!


Sunday, March 22, 2015


It took a lot of courage but I finally made the first cuts into my luscious Kim Diehl fabrics on Thursday.
There'll be no stopping me now!!!
Four of the blocks in my version of Leanne Beasley's 'Down in the Garden' quilt call for these mini Dresden plate flowers so that's where I started. They measure 5 1/2" in diameter and I made them using the English paper piecing method. Each little blade or petal measures 2 1/2" x 1 1/2". I would like to get all of the add-ons, appliques and embellishments made before actually starting to cut and piece the nine blocks.

While having breakfast on Friday morning, I got this 'epiphany' that I wanted to change up the quilt design even more by adding sashing and cornerstones between the blocks. Of course I now needed more yardage of one of the fabrics so off we went to our not-so-local quilt shop where I picked up two yards of this gorgeous cheddar.
I finished assembling my little Dresden flowers last night...
so you know what I'll be doing for the next couple of hours because we had another 6" of snow fall overnight.  *sigh* 
If you guessed stitching them to a background block then you're right!
Mindless stitching at the kitchen table close to the fire with easy listening music playing softly in the background...can it get much better than this?
My goal is to have the flimsy finished by the end of next week.
A lofty ambition but do-able I think, provided I can stay on track without too many distractions!

Happy stitching!