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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Halloween!

Here's my latest kitty photo:

My beautiful Nightmare!  He turned 17 last week.  He's doing well on the special kidney diet.  We took him for another blood test on Saturday and his numbers have definitely improved.  He's still recovering from the stroke he had 2 months ago though.  He was doing really good with that until we took him to the vet on Sat.  I think taking him out of the house was a little bit of a setback for him.  But he is a beauty isn't he?  He's been with me since he was 3 weeks old.

In other news, here's my latest stitching project:

My mom gave me that green bee awhile back and I thought he would be cute on a purse.  I think this is really cheery looking!

Have a Happy Halloween everyone!  Don't eat too much candy....unless it's chocolate!


Sunday, October 28, 2012

Crazy Quilt Dolls

I finished up the dress for my 3rd little Crazy Quilt Doll:

Now to assemble these!  I'll be doing that this week.

In the meantime, I'm working on Lesson 1 of my Color & Composition Classes starting in January. 

Also, for anyone who has and uses my Elegant Crazy Quilt Seam Treatments books, there's a Flickr group for sharing photos of your stitched borders.  This is just for photos of blocks that have my borders on them but it is open to the public.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Crazy Quilt Christmas Ornaments

Well, these Crazy Quilt Ornaments would be for a large Christmas tree or a door knob:



I think these will be the last of my Christmas things for this year.  I don't know if mom will be doing anything or not.  Next on my stitching list is to finish up my little Crazy Quilt Dolls.  These ornaments are in my Etsy shop.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

More Crazy Quilt Doll Dresses

I finished stitching up the blue doll dress that I was working on the other day:

Again, it looks a little bulky but it's just pinned to the doll at the moment.  The bulk is from the excess fabric.  Some of that will be cut away when I assemble these.

I started on this green dress this morning:

All of the seam treatments are from Volume 3 of my Elegant Crazy Quilt Seam Treatments book.  I hope to have some time to work on this later.  I have some computer work to do for now.

I'll leave you with my latest kitty photo:

Nightmare & Lucy sharing a chair and looking outside.  Most of the time, Nightmare is biting her.  He's such a bully!  And he'll be 17 years old on Saturday!



Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Crazy Quilt Doll Dresses

I've had some porcelain doll heads in my stash for quite some time now.  I pulled them out the other day and thought I'd try dressing them.  This isn't sewn together yet.  It's just pinned to the doll:

I sewed up 3 dresses so I'll stitch all of them first and then do the finishing.  Here's the one I'm stitching on now:

I'm eager to get the assembly part.  In my younger years, I made Barbie clothes so I have a good idea of how to put the dresses together.  The dress looks a little bulky on the doll at the moment but that's just the excess fabric that I'll have to trim.


Friday, October 19, 2012

Color And Composition Lessons General Supply List

I thought I would go ahead and post the general supply list for our Color & Compositions Lessons starting in January 2013.  These are the supplies used for basic crazy quilting:

*A variety of fabrics in a variety of colors. Some prints, some solids and some textures.  I offer a Crazy Quilt Fabric Variety Pack in my Etsy shop.  Please keep in mind that only small pieces of fabrics are necessary for crazy quilting.  1/8 yards are more than enough.

*Threads - again, lots of colors are nice to have on hand.  You can use DMC 6 strand embroidery floss, #5 Perle cottons, Kreinik #4 or #8 Braids, basically whatever you like.  One of my favorite threads to use is Watercolours by The Caron Collection.

*Printable Fabric Sheets - these are available in sewing and craft stores such as JoAnn Fabrics and Hobby Lobby.  I use the June Tailor cotton fabric inkjet sheets.

 *Beads - lots of beads!  That's if you want to do my style of crazy quilting.  I use a lot of seed beads and a lot of glass pearls.  Also, flower beads and anything else that you like are nice to have on hand.

*Buttons - any type of buttons you have on hand is fine.  I use lots of plain old sewing buttons along with some pretty vintage glass buttons and inexpensive novelty buttons.

*Beading Thread or Dental Floss - it's best to attach beads with a sturdy beading thread but I've never found one that I like so instead, I use dental floss.  Just plain waxed dental floss from the dollar store.

*Needles - I'm sure most stitchers and sewers have a variety of needles on hand.  I use tiny quilting needles for beading and just a plain sewing needle for everything else.

*Pins - Another thing that every seamstress or stitcher should have on hand!

*Waste Canvas - yes, we will be working with my waste canvas technique.  I suggest either 8.5 count Waste Canvas or 10 count Waste Canvas.  If you have trouble finding it, 123Stitch.com carries it in both sizes.
Also, if you've never done counted cross stitch, you might find this YouTube video helpful.  If you prefer, this tutorial will help too.

*14 count Aida - we will be doing some cross stitch so I suggest have some in white and some in cream color and any other color that you might like to work with.

*White Felt - An 8 1/2 X 11 piece should more than enough.

*E6000 Jewelry Glue.  We'll be using this to attach anything that can't be sewn on.  It's available at Walmart, JoAnn's, Hobby Lobby and Michaels.

*Laces & Trims - again, variety in color and width.  Flea markets and antiques shops are a nice place to find vintage pieces but some nice things can found in craft and sewing stores as well.

*Small Fabric Flowers - Little satin roses and other small flowers that can be sewn on are nice to have on hand for crazy quilting.  Etsy is a great place to find these things for reasonable prices.

*Sequins - what can I say?  I love glittery things and nothing adds glitter like sequins!  I buy mine from http://www.ccartwright.com/

*Charms - little brass charms like butterflies, bees, dragonflies and other bugs are a nice stash addition.

*Muslin - I use a medium weight muslin for my foundation piecing.

*Silk Ribbon - it's a bit pricy but it adds so much to a CQ piece.  I buy mine in white and hand dye it myself.  We won't go into hand dying but if you'd like to try it, I've written a tutorial for dyeing ribbon with inexpensive Rit dye.  I purchase my 7 MM and 4 MM silk ribbon from Threadart.  You can also purchase solid colors from them as well.

*Vintage or broken jewelry - again, this up to you.  Just look around and see what you have on hand that you might like to use on your crazy quilt.

Well, that's the basic supply list for Crazy Quilting.  Each of our 25 blocks will have their own supply list but much of what we use will be from this list.  There may a couple of things for you to pick up here and there but nothing expensive or excessive.

If you're completely new to crazy quilting, I suggest that you review this tutorial on Foundation Piecing.  This is the technique I use and we will be covering it in the first Lesson but I thought it'd be a good idea for anyone who's new to this to get an idea of how foundation piecing works.

So that's the general list everyone!  Here's a little eye candy for you.  These will be heart shaped Christmas Door Knob Hangers:




I plan to sew these up over the weekend and add them to my Etsy shop.


Thursday, October 18, 2012

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

More On Our Color and Composition Lessons

Just wanted to update everyone a bit on our Color and Composition Lessons.  I've put a ton of thought into this and I think the idea of making a 25 block quilt will be a lot of fun and a great way to learn how to work with these concepts that seem to elude many stitchers.

If I may reiterate, you will learn how to work with color and composition through the repetition of doing it and working with my guidelines.  You will also learn some cool techniques as you go along!  And of course, there will be lots of helpful hints and time savers.

I was asked if there will be a supply list.  Yes, I am working on a general supply list and I will post that in the next day or so.  These items will be necessary things for the overall project.  Then, there will be a supply list per block.  Specific things that will be needed for that project.


 I do encourage you all to work from your stash rather than buying a ton of new stuff.  Although I would never discourage anyone from buying new stash either!  I'm a firm believer in stash addiction addition!  LOL!!!


Honestly, if your budget is limited, you might have to get creative....and that's what this is all about!  These lessons will spark your imagination and encourage your creativity. 

There is a tab at the top of my blog called Crazy Quilt Color & Composition Lessons.  News and information regarding this project will be posted there so for those of you who are working the lessons, you can find the information as needed.

Again, you can do as many or as few as you choose to but the more lessons you do, the better you'll get at working color and composition.  If you do all 25 lessons, you'll have enough blocks at the end of the project to make a beautiful crazy quilt!  I myself will be putting my 25 blocks together into a wall quilt as well.

Please start spreading the word about this.  The more stitchers we have, the more fun this will be and the more inspiration we'll all have.








Monday, October 15, 2012

Let's Make A Crazy Quilt

Our "Color & Composition" Lessons have changed just a bit.  Yeah, I know....you're all thinking not again right?  What can I say?  I change my mind every 5 minutes!

Honestly though, several of my readers have emailed me asking if we could just do blocks and focus on  learning Color and Composition along with some new techniques rather than spend time finishing projects.



That of course inspired the change.  I like that idea so I've made a list.  Here's the updated project:

*There will be 25 lessons in total. 
*Each lesson will be $10.00 US
*Each lesson will consist of making 1 - 6 inch block
*Each block will have a theme and color scheme
*Each block will have a "have to use" item.  Example:  a certain stitch or border or type of embroidery
*I will include a stitched example for your inspiration but there will still be some mystery to the project since   I will only be releasing 1 lesson at a time.
*You can take as many of the lessons or as few of the lessons as you want to
*There is no time frame to this project.  I don't want anyone to stress over it.  All in your own time.
*This project will take approx 12 - 18 months to complete.
*I will set up a Flickr group for everyone to share they're photos and discuss the lessons.
*I will include links to your blogs, Flickr albums or websites here on my blog so that others can visit and see your projects.
*If you do all 25 lessons, you will have 25 blocks at the end of the project.  That means, that you will have enough blocks to make a 28 inch crazy quilt.  (And so will I!)
*You will learn how to work with color and composition by the repetition of working with my guidelines and specifications.
*By the end of the 25 lessons, you will develop your own style of crazy quilting and your eye will automatically know what to do where.  You won't have to wonder anymore.  These lessons will help you to learn how to balance a block, how to put things together and how to use color.  But the most fun thing about this project is that you won't even know that you're learning it.  Your mind will just pick it up from doing it.
*All lessons will be available to purchase at Magcloud which is a site for self publication and it's owned by Hewlett Packard.  I believe they accept both PayPal and Credit Cards.
*The project starts the beginning of January 2013.

So that's my update for today everyone!  Start gathering your supplies and prepare to make a crazy quilt!

I'm going to make up a little banner too so that anyone who would like to share the project on their blog can do so.  I'll have that ready soon.


Sunday, October 14, 2012

Crazy Quilt Christmas Ornaments

I have a couple of finishes to share with you today:



I just listed these in my Etsy shop.

I'll have more information tomorrow about my "Color & Composition" Lessons.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Update On Crazy Quilt Project Classes

First, I'd like to say thank you to everyone who left comments and sent emails to me regarding my upcoming Crazy Quilt classes.  Feedback and input helps me to make learning my style of crazy quilting fun and exciting for everyone including me!

Several of you have sent me messages saying that you love the idea of learning color & composition without actually knowing that you're learning that.  And that is my main objective with these class projects.  It's through the repetition of working the projects using my specifics that your mind will learn how to do it and eventually, you'll never have to think about it again.  You'll just feel it and do it.

My second objective is to share my techniques.  I've been stitching since I was 7 or 8 years old.  Just for the record, I'm almost 51 now so I've learned a lot in my lifetime so far as stitching, sewing and crafting goes.  My mom has always said that I was extremely resourceful and innovative.  I never played by the rules and I guess that's what attracts me to crazy quilting.  There are no rules!  And there are no mistakes. 

So far, everyone who has written to me loves the idea of these classes but several of you have told me that you don't care for the mystery aspect of it.  Ladies, please give me your feedback on this!  We don't have to do these classes as mysteries.  I can share right off the bat, what the project will be.  Also, for anyone who doesn't care to do the finished projects, but wants to join in for the sake of learning, you're welcome to do 6 or 8 inch blocks.  Just follow the same guidelines that I include with each project and you'll acquire the skills that I'm teaching.

Finally, there are no deadlines and no pressure!  These projects are supposed to be fun and I don't want anyone to feel that they have to have their project done by a certain time.  I will post new projects as I do them and you can order them and stitch them in your own time frame.  I do plan to keep the first project rather simple just so everyone can get the hang of my teaching style but after that, you never know what I may come up with.  And I have a list a mile long!

I have decided to present these class projects through Magcloud.  There, you can order either a digital (PDF) version which you can print immediately on your computer or you can order a magazine version.  I think this will be the easiest way for me to get the projects to you and easiest way for you to order the projects.  Be sure to follow me at Magcloud too!

So that's my news for today everyone!  Let me know if you want me to drop the "mystery" part of this.  I discussed it with my mom too and she feels that the mystery part of it might be too overwhelming for novice crazy quilters. 

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Crazy Quilt Mystery Project Classes

I've mentioned it a few times in recent posts but I thought for today, I would go into a bit of detail regarding my Crazy Quilt Mystery Project Classes which will be starting in January of 2013.

Over the past few years, I've had many stitchers email me asking what can they do to get their crazy quilt blocks to look like mine.  I always tell them that they don't want their blocks to look like mine.  They want their blocks to look like their blocks.

I've been thinking about this on and off over the past few months, trying to determine what it is about my CQ work that stitchers are attracted to.  I think I've come up with a few answers.

Color & Composition - I think the biggest concern that stitchers have with Crazy Quilting and any collage work for that matter, is learning how to compose a block and learning how to use color.  Color can make or break a piece.

Certainly, antique crazy quilts had nothing to do with those aspects.  They were about using scraps and showing off needlework skills.  But modern crazy quilting has more of a focus on design elements and embellishments.  The crazy quilting we do now tells a story.  And stitchers who are relatively new to CQ work are at a loss as to "what to put where".

Techniques - Let's face it, there are more options available to us now than ever before!  There is no limits to what can be added to a crazy quilt block.  Any type of needlework and embroidery skill can be used.  There are so many different stitches that can be done.  How does one choose?

Embellishments - And then there's the embellishments!  What to add, what not to add, what works, what doesn't work.  When is enough, enough.  How do you know when you're done.  These are the questions I've been asked repeatedly over the past few years.

Finish It - And then there's "what to do with it when it's done".  Certainly no one wants to put a beautiful stitched piece in a drawer. 

First and foremost, my upcoming mystery projects will be classes.  My #1 focus will be to teach color and composition.  What might surprise you though is that you won't know that you're learning color & composition.  Color and composition is not something you do, it's something you know and feel but you will learn it by doing it based on the specifics that I will give for each mystery project.

Also through doing these projects, you will learn how to do a huge variety of techniques, how to and what to embellish with and how to finish your projects. Yes, some sewing techniques will be included as well.  Each project will be finished into a useable or decorative item.  Nothing will be sitting in a drawer!  And you'll learn how to tell a visual story!

Ongoing Classes - My Crazy Quilt Mystery Project Classes will be an ongoing series of projects and through doing these projects, stitchers will learn basically, how to make their crazy quilt blocks look like mine but, with their own special touches.  Crazy Quilting is an art form and in time, stitchers will develop their own style that will make their pieces unique to them.  But you have to do it to develop your style.

What's The Mystery? - Now that I've told you what you'll be learning through these classes, you're probably wondering what the mystery is.  Each project will be a specific finished item with a theme.  Each project will have several requirements, for example, a certain stitch may have to be used, or a certain handmade embellishment may be required and most of the projects will require certain colors.  That's the mystery.  You won't know what you'll be doing until you do it.  And the more mystery classes you take on, the more you'll learn.

Patterns - All necessary patterns for each project will be included.  All finishing directions will be included and I will show a finished example at some point along the way to help you but please keep in mind, you don't want to copy what I do.  You want to do it your way, but with my guidance.

Class Fee - I'm thinking of a fee of around $10.00 per mystery class.  I want to keep this affordable for everyone.

So does that sound like fun?  My list of projects is already a mile long so there is a lot to learn.  You choose which projects you want to take and which you don't.  Each project will have a "theme" and "learning focus" so you'll know in advance if you're interested.  You just won't know what exactly you'll be making.  Oh, and in some cases, we may be doing some blocks that can later be put together into a wall quilt! 

Flickr - When we get a little closer, I'll set up a Flickr group for everyone to share photos and chat about the projects.

I think this will be a really fun way to learn and a great way for stitchers to get together and discuss the art crazy quilting. And you don't have to be an experienced crazy quilter to do these projects.  Just some knowledge of piecing a block (I use the sew & flip method) and basic embroidery skills are all you need for these classes.  But advanced stitchers will enjoy them too!  And at some point, we will get into some other piecing techniques as well.

Let me know what ya'll think and if you have any questions. 

I'm still working out the technical aspects of presenting the projects.  I'm leaning towards Magcloud publications because I think that may be the easiest option for everyone.  If anyone has any other ideas, please let me know.



Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Elegant Cellphone Pouch

I stitched this up early this morning:

I started another cellphone pouch too.  I'll probably finish it up early tomorrow morning!

And now not for the faint of heart, this little guy just snuck up on me a few minutes ago:

It's just a harmless little grass snake but I don't care for them.  Only because they just come out of nowhere.  I had my cellphone in my pocket so I snapped a picture.  He startled the daylights out of me when I took the trash out!


Monday, October 08, 2012

Crazy Quilt Ornament Santa

I finished up on this crazy quilt Santa ornament early this morning:

I can't wait to sew these last 3 stitched pieces up!  Next I'll be doing a few gifts so stop back to see those.

Also, I have Crazy Quilt Mystery Project Classes coming in January!!!

Sunday, October 07, 2012

More Examples From Volume 3

Been stitching like crazy these past few days.  I finished up my first little snowman ornament:

And then yesterday, I stitched up this one:

Here's a photo of this last block before all the embellishments:

You can see how I used some of the new borders from Volume 3 of Elegant Crazy Quilt Seam Treatments.

And here are some closeups:


And then early this morning, long before dawn, I started on this Santa Claus ornament:

And here are closeups of the stitching:




So now that Volume 3 is done, I have several new projects in the works.  You might get a little hint if you look at some of the photos in this post long enough!  And, coming soon.......Crazy Quilt Mystery Projects!  More information to come!

Finally for today, we're offering 25% off in our Etsy shop.  Use Coupon Code:  PreChristmas10 and you'll get 25% off your entire order!



Friday, October 05, 2012

Elegant Crazy Quilt Seam Treatments Volume 3

I'm pleased to announce that Volume 3 of Elegant Crazy Quilt Seam Treatments is now available:

I've done another 180 all new charted borders for stitching crazy quilt seams with my Waste Canvas technique.  Please note, there are no directions in this volume.  Full directions for working with Waste Canvas are available in Volume 1

Here is my latest project using the borders from my latest volume:

And here is another photo of the same borders with the beads:





Be sure to click on the photos so you can see the borders closeup!






Winter Wonderland At Etsy

I finished up my last 2 door hangers and added them to my Kitty and Me Etsy shop:


And just for fun, I thought you would enjoy seeing my latest centerpiece:

Sorry, Lucy is not available for purchase!  LOL!!!

Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Cat Doll for Cover of Volume 3

This is the cat doll that I did for the cover of Elegant Crazy Quilt Seam Treatments Volume 3:

I'm happy to say that Volume 3 is done!  The cover photo is taken and we're putting it together.  If all goes well, I expect to have it available by the weekend.

And if no one minds that I pat myself on the back, I believe this is the best collection of borders that I've done yet!  I've already stitched a few and can't wait to stitch some more!

I spent 6 hours sewing up some new blocks today so I'm ready to stitch!!!

And, I've already started on another book for crazy quilting.  No, not borders.  You'll have to keep your eyes open for hints in upcoming blog posts!

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