Friday, April 18, 2014

#52 Celebrating 500 Instagram Followers with a Giveaway!!!!!

I can't believe that I posted my first Instagram picture 72 weeks ago (Dec 2/12.), 
and now 835 posts later, and I have 500 followers and counting!!

 I love the quilting community, and I have learned so much from following other quilter's blogs and joining QAL (quilt alongs) and BOM (block of the months) . When I first started  quilting I signed up in my local quilt shop for their beginner blocks series, but too many of their other classes weren't what I was looking to sew. Which sent me searching online where I came across One of my first projects was the Craftsy 2012 BOM, which is free, and taught by Amy Gibson!! Bonus for me, she is a great teacher! I learned so much doing that sampler quilt!! Then I joined any quilt along or block of the month that looked fun and interesting and different!! I have learned from so many talented quilters over the last 2 years !! Amy Smart Diary of a Quilter (virtual quilting bee), Amy Gibson Stitchery Dickory Dock (Sugar Block Club), Lee Heinrich Freshly Pieced (Bloom Bloom Pow) and can't wait to tackle Vintage Quilt Revival! and I have to mention Julie Hirt 627 Handworks (Block Rock'n -paper piecing) fantastic learning experience!!
I have tested patterns for a paper piece pattern designer, Kristy Quiet Play, so fun!! I have participated in a few blog hops too.One for an online friend, Frances Newcombe, who was introducing her first line with AGF. Who now has two more coming out, Cherie and Utopia!!! Amazing, so much talent out there!!! And another hop, Holiday Hullabaloo, for Jacquelynne Steves that inspired me to create a pattern I shared here. And I have virtually met all of you too!!!

So don't let geography limit you from enjoying and learning  more about piecing and quilting, check out your local shops, but search around online too, and have fun learning and sharing!!!

*I want to add here that I do not have any sponsors for my blog, I receive nothing from any company or product I may mention in my post today, I just wanted to share what I have liked and learned from my quilting journey to date. 
Link Here

Saying that, I did round up a sponsor for my giveaway to celebrate and say thanks for  "500 Instagram Followers" and counting!!!
I love Pam and Mad About Patchwork and she is celebrating too!!
 I shop here all the time! Love the speed of delivery, love the fabric and ever growing products she carries, love the customer service, love the fact that I can buy Kona by the bolt!!! 
So for those of you who may not be familiar with Mad About Patchwork here is a little bit about the online company....

 Mad About Patchwork is a Canadian online shop with a focus on fabric and patterns for modern quilters. With personal customer service, fair prices, and same day shipping from Ottawa, it’s a sweet deal for Canadian shoppers. (Pam ships everywhere, though)

Lots of modern basics are always in stock – Kona cotton, Essex Linen, Westminster shot cottons and Marcia Derse Palette. You will also find fabric from popular designers, along with patterns, books and notions. Recent arrivals include Meadow by Leah Duncan, Fox Field by Tula Pink, and Mormor by Lotta Jansdotter.
Take a look at the Curated Bundles – fresh fabric mixes from Pam and her team, as well as the Stash Bundles – helping you augment your fabric stash by colour or pattern.

Mad About Patchwork is celebrating 6 years in business with a series of weekly sales throughout the month of April. Save 16% on polka dots until April 23. 

So if you haven't checked out Mad About Patchwork, or her Blog, or FaceBook Page, you should!!

What I've Been Up to:

My check list!! 

1. Sugar Block Club 2014

2. Sew Kitschy BOM

3. Classic Meets Modern BOM

4. Modern Blocks BOM

5. Globe Trotting BOM

6. Layer Cake Sampler QAL

7. Triangle QAL Top Complete

8. Scrappy Trip Around the World Bee

9. Modern Insta Bee

10. Diamond Tread (quilt )

11. Batik Quilt (just moved from UFO to WIP!!) Top Complete!!

I haven't sewn the Layer Cake Sampler blocks (17 and 18) yet, so I will post them later!! Only one more week to go!!

The Give Away: (2) Twenty Five Dollar gift certificate from Mad About Patchwork!!!

Give Away is open to everyone, Canadian and international!!! Good LucK!

Sunday, April 13, 2014

#51 Long Arm Struggles continue

As some of you know who follow me on Instagram (@upstairshobbyroom) I purchased a long arm and have had nothing but problems with it. Everything major has been replaced, and I still have issues (will sew for awhile fine and then goes into a slow sluggish stop start action going to the start of a quilt pattern and when it starts the pattern, the machine goes crazy fast with a jerking motion causing jagged jerky stitching). I was thinking how can a company have so many lemon pieces, a manufacturing problem? Than I swapped out my machine and component with the shop owners and I am having the same issues with hers, even though hers runs fine at her shop, and guess what.... mine runs fine at her shop!!!!! So what is the problem???? I have said all along it has to be the rural power grid I am on (this machine is power sensitive)  (our home is only 4yrs old so our wiring is fine) , but no one will admit to this or agree with me, and I am stuck being totally frustrated and riddled with guilt over the money I thought I was investing, that wasn't much of an investment at this point!!!!
I share this because I am hoping that anyone who has a long arm will share any insights they might have and for future reference what long arm they use and why?  I need info to move on from here, calling all long arm quilters!!!!!! and if you don't, but know someone who does, can you forward the info and ask them to email me, I would be so thankful! ( )

What I've Been Up To:

Not much sewing this week, but lots of Maple Syrup was made!! We have a small batch still to jar, but from 50 taps we produced approx 45L of syrup!! We make it for ourselves and family, every other year. This year was a total family experience, everyone got in on the action. :)

Here's the  good part of trying to figure out what the issue is with the Long Arm,  4 baby stitch sampler quilts. Not perfect stitches, but still usable, so nothing goes to waste.

Got my Triangles all sewn together for the Triangle QAL

Monday, April 7, 2014

#50 Part 3...Struggles and A Little Miracle

I'm finally getting the rest of the amazing story of my best friend's miracle pregnancy written up for all of you who were following along on the blog and who sent Kellie and the baby your thoughts and prayers. If you are new to my blog and want to read the story from the beginning go to Part 1 and Part 2 of their story.

So it seems with all parts of this story it starts with some struggles... but let's start with the happy part first...

It's a Boy!!!!
Born February 8th weighing in at 6lbs 4oz.

Kellie went into labor on Feb 7 and struggled with dilation, and ended up having an emergency C Section, with an epidural (which gave her a headache for 3 days, not nice). The baby was stuck in her pelvis and in duress and then stopped breathing (about 4 minutes) after delivery. The doctors had to help him start to breath, and then he was able to continue breathing on his own. Kellie didn't get to see the baby for more than 30 minutes after he was born, his dad (Dan) was able to follow and watch over him as the doctors where checking him. ( Kellie was a little out of it on the medication, she says with a chuckle. I went in later in the afternoon and she was very funny on the happy meds!! lol) The doctors called in the specialists because Caleb was still showing signs of stress, his heart rate would dip really low to about 60 when his rate should be about 120. So he was transferred to a hospital 1 1/2 hours away, that was equipped to better treat Caleb. They brought him in an incubator for Kellie to see before he was transferred, and Kellie had to wait for another ambulance to take her later. Later was 6 hours. 6 hours with only a phone number to call to get information on what was happening with your newborn.  So many people were praying. Dan was being amazingly strong and well Kellie, was as stated above, a little loopy on pain meds. (which was funny to see and helped her not to stress as much).

God answered another prayer and Dan was able to not only go in the ambulance, but stay at the hospital with Kellie and Caleb for the 5 days they were admitted.

Kellie didn't get to hold Caleb until the second day and was finally able to try and nurse him as well. Unfortunately there have been some struggles in this area too and  he wasn't getting enough milk from nursing alone so they've had to supplement with formula. Kellie is such a trooper!!!
The good news Caleb had multiple tests eeg, ecg, blood work, etc. during the 5 days and all were coming back normal and even when his heart rate dipped his oxygen saturation remained at 100%. After 5 days they were released from this hospital and sent to a general hospital, were they continued to monitor Caleb's heart rate and weight and 3 days later they were home!!

He will still have some regular visits to see the specialist to keep monitoring him as he grows, just to be safe. His next visit is in May. But God is so good and this little guy is growing so fast, look at that face, amazing!!! (I get to brag, being an honorary Auntie!! :)

An amazing miracle and blessing!! And so cute!!

Now nobody really probably cares, What I've Been Up To: , after those cute pictures, lol......

Sugar Block Club 2014

Look how much smaller the row gets

And Maple Syrup production is in full swing!!! Oh Yum :)

And 2 batches are made!!! 16.5 L

Ratio of sap to syrup is 40 to 1. So you need 40 liters of sap to produce 1 liter of syrup. A lot of boiling and adding sap a bit at a time, and keeping the fire going, but oh so worth it!!

Monday, March 31, 2014

#49 WIPs and UFOs My List

Ok so this is just for me really! Lol!! I need to get organized and get old projects completed. If just to the completed quilt top stage, being as I still do not have a working long arm!! (sad, frustrated face should be displayed here)
I can't seem to help myself and keep joining new QAL. Which is find and lovely and creatively inspiring. But when I look at the projects that use to stir up those same feeling that have never been completed, they are mocking me and raining on my other wise lovely parade of new projects, lol!!! So a list to inspire me to check  finishes off was in order.

WIPs (Current):

1. Sugar Block Club 2014

2. Sew Kitschy BOM

3. Classic Meets Modern BOM

4. Modern Blocks BOM

5. Globe Trotting BOM

6. Layer Cake Sampler QAL

7. Triangle QAL

8. Scrappy Trip Around the World Bee

9. Modern Insta Bee

10. Diamond Tread (quilt )

11. Batik Quilt (just moved from UFO to WIP!!)

12. Sugar Block Club 2013 (top needs to be sewn together)

UFOs ( I'm being real, haven't touch these in over 6 months or more)

1. Block Rock'n (paper pieced)

2. Sampler Quilt

3. Flower Patch QAL (ended last yr)

4. Fusion

5. Craftsy BOM 2013 (never finished)

6. Six quilt tops waiting for the long arm to work properly, so that I can learn how to quilt, so that all the                lovely quilt tops will become quilts.

What I have been doing:

New Labels!!
Layer Cake Sampler Blocks 9-12

Modern Insta Bee 2014 August Block (little early, but she knew what she wanted) 
And why make 1 when making 2 is just as easy?!! For my Sampler Quilt

and late arrival......Modern Blocks BOM (last one with the group, but this book has 99 blocks and I have only sewn there will be more!!)
And Sew Retro Kitchen BOM

Thursday, March 20, 2014

#48 Quilt as You Go Demo

I am so far behind on posting to my blog....
Between illness, sewing for a few Blog Hops and lets just be real....laziness
but here goes.... 

First I joined the Sew Along that The Quilt Barn hosted for the Sew Together Bag by Michelle of Sewdemented and was asked on Instagram how I did the piecing for the outside of my bag. So here are some pictures and explanation of what I did.

1. Start by cutting your batting or fleece a bit bigger than you need, trim down after.

2. Cut strips of fabric the length needed (mine strips were 1.5-2" wide by the length I needed) Lay them out in the order you want to sew them on.

3. Find the center of your batting, and the center of your strip. 

4. First strip is sewn on right side up. 1/4" seam

5. Next strip is centered and sewn with right sides together. Press strip back so right side is up

6. Continue until you cover your batting.

7. I then sewed the 2 end pieced the same way.

8. Then I stitched with variegated thread every 1/4 inch to add a decorative feature. 
9. Trim to correct size required.

What I've Been Up To:

3 Sew Together Bags Completed of the 4 I planned on doing. (4th one coming)