Sew Karen-ly Created...

If you have arrived here via a link (such as to a tutorial) click on "Sew Karen-ly Created" to return to the latest blog post. I invite you to my website to see a gallery of quilts and patterns available for purchase. Pictured is "Red Work Strippy", from the book Canadian Heritage Quilting.
Comments are always appreciated, simply click the word "comments" at the end of each post to leave your message. Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, 9 January 2019

2018 in Review

It's that time when we turn the page to a new year, and take a sweeping look back on the one that's just passed.  It was a busy year for me professionally, and much was accomplished. 

As in previous years, I designed and made the Row By Row quilt for Mrs Pugsley's Emporium.  The theme was "Sew Musical" and the Musical Ride fit nicely with the Canada 2017 banner from the previous year, in terms of both colour and content.
It's not an easy thing to design a piece to fit in the bizarre 9" x 36" shape, have it adapt to hang both vertically and horizontally, be easy enough for a beginner to stitch...and yet not too easy that it lacks substance...and have the instructions fit on as few pages as possible.  Even trickier, was persuading a Mountie to lend his gear for the photo shoot! I am pleased with how it all turned out.

 Early in the year, I answered a call from the Quilt Show to be paired with a partner in the U.S. for an International Miniature Quilt Exchange.  Throughout the year, I got to know my partner from New Mexico and we sent our quilts to each other in October.  You can read more about mine here.
The beautiful quilt I received from Terry hangs in our bedroom:
It was a wonderful project and one I encourage you to look into for the next session.

My big news was being selected as an Island Batik Ambassador.  What an amazing experience this has been!  Monthly challenges stimulate creative juices and keep you on your toes to be a good steward of your time.  The goodies, sent by Island Batik and their partners,Aurifil and Hobbs batting, have been phenomenal!  It's manna from heaven when those boxes arrive. These are the projects I've created for the monthly challenges.

Island Batik also provided opportunity for projects to be shown at Quilt Market in Houston, and to travel in a trunk show to shops across the US, and my Felicity joined this program. The pattern is being distributed By Island Batik and is available for purchase from them, or directly from my website. I have another large quilt to be exhibited at Spring Quilt Market 2019, and I will show that later on. 
Additionally at Houston Quilt Festival this year, I had 3 previously completed quilts in the exhibit "You've Got Talent", one of which was Global Warming:
In the spring, I had the nail-biting opportunity to be interviewed by Pat Sloan for her podcast.
My involvement with the Nova Scotia Fibre Arts Festival kept me hopping in October.  I taught two workshops on machine quilting, and had a booth of Aurifil thread at the ever-popular Zonta Bazaar.  This was my 11th year as part of this festival, and I was thrilled to be asked to put in a display at Mansour's Menswear.  I chose to showcase my Island Batik projects.
My Aurifil thread store continues to grow, and I have big plans for its expansion.  Already there are over 60 colours in the 50 weight thread, various weights, and many beautiful collections.  I am happy to say that prices will remain the same for the upcoming year. Work is underway to improve the functionality of my website, including easier pattern downloads.

This month, I am participating in the final activity for the 2018 Island Batik Ambassadors. The Getaway Blog Hop is now underway, and I can't wait to show you the quilt I made from the gorgeous collection they sent!  Please check back on January 23rd.
2019 begins with news that I have been asked to return as an Island Batik Ambassador, and I am beyond happy to remain part of this incredible team.

It's been a busy year, and I thank you for allowing me to share that with you.

Sunday, 6 January 2019

Getaway Blog Hop Schedule

It's been nothing short of a fabulous year for the Island Batik Ambassadors, and we wrap up 2018 with a month long blog hop which begins tomorrow.  Our projects will showcase the new fabric collections arriving in quilt shops now, and there will be opportunity to win some fabulous prizes.    My collection is "Blossom", and I thoroughly enjoyed working with these colours!

Below is a list of Ambassadors, and the date each of us will post.  Please visit each of the stops for a little winter quilty getaway.
Getaway Blog Hop Schedule

Monday, January 7 - Crystal Ball

Tuesday, January 8  - Ditty

Wednesday, January 9 - Elk Lodge

Thursday, January 10 - Feline Fine

Friday, January 11 - Flea Market

Monday, January 14 - Fortune Teller
Jennifer Fulton- The Inquiring Quilter

Tuesday, January 15  - Gypsy Rose

Wednesday, January 16 - Paisley Park

Thursday, January 17 - Soul Song

Friday, January 18 - Twilight Chic

Monday, January 21 - Winter Park

Tuesday, January 22  - Bazaar

Wednesday, January 23 - Blossom

Thursday, January 24 - Boho

Friday, January 25 - Brookview

Monday, January 28 - French Blue

Tuesday, January 29  - Midsummer Night

Wednesday, January 30 - Oh Deer

Thursday, January 31 - Snow Berry  

Friday, February 1-  Candy Cane Lane and Icicle
Anne Wiens- Icicle - Sweetgrass Creative Designs

Barbara Gaddy - Candy Cane Lane  -Bejeweled Quilts by Barb

Monday, 17 December 2018

A Little Christmas Whimsy

For the December Island Batik Ambassador challenge, we were tasked with creating anything "wonky" or "whimsical", in any size.  What fun!!
As part of the Island Batik Ambassador program, we are each generously sent product a couple of times a year with which to work - fabric, thread, and batting. The second Island Batik box sent this year included an intriguing collection of checked fabrics, which were perfect for what I had in mind for this challenge. I didn't exactly follow a pattern...but Googled "elf stockings" and found images of several that I liked.  This link should get you started, but you may want to change things up a bit as you go.  I had three colours of checked fabric...and of course, I started with the red. My plan was to place the chequered squares on point along the bias of the fabric, for more of a jester look.
I traced out my pattern and added a straight line down the centre to make sure of exact placement.
I folded the pattern in half so I could see the diamonds underneath and ran the line down the centre point of each.
It's cute already!
Working with batiks is so great as you don't have to worry about the right and wrong side of the fabric, and thus cut two fronts or two backs.  Just turn one piece over and you're good to go!
Although the pattern didn't call for batting, the quilter in me needed to add a bit of substance, and Hobbs Thermore was perfect - it added structure without bulk. (Locally, it's available at Mrs Pugsley's Emporium.) The batting was basted to both the stocking front and back, and the pieces sewn right sides together.  The pattern didn't call for a lining either, but I added one, just to give a nice finish, as these stockings will be used as gift bags for special friends.
For the top cuff, I opted for medium weight iron-on interfacing to add a bit of body.
I chose a "Grinch green" for the cuff from the Island Batik Blenders. A sleeve board comes in so handy when pressing small pieces.
Here's my first finished stocking, with a bell on the toe and pompoms on the cuff points. (It's hanging on my grandparent's old radio, from the 1940's :)).
My next two stockings are ready to cut; the purple one will have a plain white cuff  with the recipient's name hand embroidered.  To do this, I will use Aurifloss in pink and grey. The pompom colour is as yet undecided, but if I can't find anything suitable, the points may just get adorned with bells, like the toes.

I love this blue and can't wait to see it finished!
And of course, the fun of a stocking is filling it with all kinds of goodies!
Thank you to Island Batik, Hobbs Batting, and Aurifil for supplying the products used in these whimsical Christmas stockings. Please visit the other Island Batik Ambassadors at the links below to see what everyone has come up with for this month's challenge.  I am off to sew my stockings!