Monday, January 29, 2018

~Design Wall Monday ~ and a peek ~

Hello sweet friends! This past week has been a new adventure of learning to share my quilting space. I can admit I'm quite the selfish quilter.  My space, my tools, my fabric, and working on my schedule.   But my darling 4 yr old grand daughter has a way of melting my heart.  

And to be honest, letting her play with my scrap basket and design wall kept her busy while I did some quilting.  Of course as with any 4 yr old she chatted away as she played.  Chatting is the wrong word.  She asked question after question after question.  Why is this piece an oval?  How did you cut it like this grandma?  Isn't this the longest piece ever!?  Why do you have so many dot fabric?  Do you like dot fabric?  What's your fabric piece?  Are you going to cut more pieces for me to play with?  Can I cut some?  Can I take this piece home?  Can mommy have some?  Do you like fabric, grandma?  Why do you like fabric grandma?  Can I have fabric when I get big?  When can I sew? 

Grandma look!  Isn't this pretty!?  Grandma can I have ladder so I can put pieces up high?

Believe it or not I did manage to get something done besides answer questions.  

~ Lea Anne ~
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Tuesday, January 23, 2018

~ NO POO! ~

Hi! Sweet Friends!  You read that's right I said NO POO!  Now don't get scared it has nothing to do with the Porcelain Throne.  When I say POO it means Shampoo.  Since September of 2017 I've been soap and shampoo free.  Which simply means I only use all natural ingredients for hygiene.  We'll delve deeper into that after I give a little shout out to a fellow quilter/blogger/soap maker.  After months without any soap I ordered  homemade all natural soaps from Em @ Em's Scrapbag.  She has a lovely little selection of homemade  natural soaps in her Etsy Store.  Make sure to take a look around her shop because there's also some amazing quilt patterns.

You can read more about NOT washing your hair at Wellness Momma website.  I know what your thinking..WHY would you not want to be clean?  Well it's simple shampoo dries out my menopausal hair and soap makes me itch.  You don't give up bathing or washing your hair, you give up the chemicals causing the problems.  I still bath everyday, I just don't use soap.  It hasn't been an easy transition.  My hair has seen a variety of different and odd products used on it during this process.  Eggs, honey, molasses, baking soda, apple cider vinegar, mayo, yogurt, olive and coconut oil.  Sounds like I'm making a salad on my head!  They all work if you want to take the time to find the right mixture and rotation for you.   The one thing I missed the most was the perfumes.  I tried making sprays with essential oils and it just wasn't the same.  So two weeks ago I caved and washed my hair with my old BAD shampoo that was tucked under the bathroom sink.  


I won't be doing that again. Itch-fest!  Well after receiving the aroma filled box of soap and washing my body with it (and with out itching) I decided to give Em's Lavender soap a try on my hair.  Just a small amount of lather on my hands and a quick rub on my hair, avoiding my scalp.  My hair has built up the natural wax and I didn't want to wash it away or cause my scalp to itch.  While rinsing my hair I noticed it felt really nice and wasn't squeaky clean...that's good by the way, your hair should never squeak.  Allowed my hair to dry naturally as always.  My hair is shiny and clean and smells so good! The unexpected side effect of using the bath soap on my hair was my hair was tangle free from the oil in the soap.  It also tamed down my frizzy fine hair allowing it to lay much nicer.

So if you've been considering going soap free.  I would highly recommend Em's Natural Soaps.  She sells larger bars as well as smaller sample bars.  Don't let the prices of natural soaps scare you away.  From what I've read, you use less of it so it last longer.  

~ Lea Anne ~

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Monday, January 22, 2018

This and That

Happy Monday quilting friends!  Before we talk about quilting this morning I wanted to be your typical proud grandma and share with you my new grandson.   This is Mason Nathaniel, born last Wednesday.    
My daughters 4th and last baby.  The doctors were talking about complications due to her small size and him growing so quick and large.  But by the grace of the powers that be everything went smoothly and naturally.  So instead of spending a few weeks with my daughters family, I'll be bringing my favorite little sewing buddy Aylin home with me for a couple of weeks while mommy gets to know the new baby.  She's a good girl, but I know the studio work will slow to a crawl.

Luckily there's no sewing that needs to be completed.  This is what my design wall looks like a the moment.  You know what that means!  The quilt top is complete!  Yeah!

And that means I need to convert all my scribbles into a printable pattern and quilt the quilt.  Pattern writing requires hours, days really of sitting at the computer.  The plan is to quilt awhile then write awhile.  Giving me a nice variety.  Standing or sitting for long periods of time is so hard on this ole gals body.  I'm sure Aylin will keep me hopping also! 

See you in a few hops!

~ Lea Anne Brummett ~

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Wednesday, January 17, 2018

~ Making Progress using DIY Acrylic Templates ~

Hello Quilting Friends!  I'm still working on a new quilt pattern.  Many of my quilts use the stitch, clip and flip method for snowballing fabric corners.   Those cut off corners can be saved and used as half square triangles(HST's) in another quilt.  But for my new quilt pattern they'll be squared up and used in the quilt.  

Both the green HST's and the pink are clipped corners from this quilt.  I managed to work in all the pink cut offs and most of the green into the quilt pattern.  It was a fun challenge to design a quilt around one block idea and it's own leftovers.  As you know I live in a rural area (Podunk) and going into town can take a big chunk out of my day and wallet.  Planning ahead is necessary when you only go into town once every week or two.   So I try to be prepared at all times for just about anything.   Instead of running into town for just the right quilting ruler I keep Score and snap Acrylic on hand to make my own templates.  Below is two templates I've made in past year for other projects.  One is a 2.5" square and the other is 3.5" square that was used for Bonnie Hunters En Provence Mystery quilt last year.  All the lines on the 3.5" square were not needed for this project, but the middle diagonal line worked perfectly for the pink HST's.

When making your own templates there's two handy tips you should know.  

1. To make the lines permanent you need to score the acrylic with a razor knife then use a permanent marker to fill in the score line.  If you don't the lines you draw will wear off with usage. 
  BONUS  The diagonal score line for the HST's is a little bit raised.  This raised line will lock up against the diagonal line on the HST's!  Homemade block loc ruler....shhhh don't tell our secret.  It's not as raised as the real block loc rulers but it does help.
2.  Because there is no paint on the templates to help with slipping adding something to make them less slippy may be necessary.  I use a piece of tape.  If your real thrifty just scratch the Acrylic with sand paper or make a few scratch marks with the razor knife.  My 3.5" has enough scored lines that it does not slip.

This is a Bonnie Hunter tip that she uses for all her quilting rulers.  One of the best tips ever!  It's cheap and one roll of this stuff will last for a lifetime in your sewing supplies. 

Over the year I've made several different templates.  How many times have you had an odd size flying geese or Dresden blade?  Dresden's are one of my favorite quilts to make and they come in so many sizes.  Using the paper template that comes with a pattern to make an acrylic template makes the cutting process so much easier.  Sheets of Acrylic can be purchased at just about any home improvement store.  I find my best deals at Home Depot.  They have a nice variety of score and snap. That's the key...MAKE SURE IT'S SCORE AND SNAP ACRYLIC.  The thickness you can guess is about the same as any other ruler you have in your collection of rulers.  Another tip when making your template is to score the same line about 4 times, pressing hard.  This will make the perfect snap every time.  To get perfect measurements use your quilting rulers for scoring the acrylic.

Ok!  Now that all the trimming up is complete I can get this Big Ole Beauty made into a top.  See you soon for the reveal!

~ Lea Anne ~

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Tuesday, January 16, 2018

~ Blue quilt marker = BROWN marks ***Removing ~

Good Morning sweet quilting friends!  Today I'd like to share with you my recent battle of the WATER SOLUBLE BLUE MARKING PEN.  I love them so much whenever I see a new style or brand I purchase one.   Here are just the few I had on my cutting table pen holder.

I use them almost everyday to mark sewing and quilting lines.  I've never had any issues with them until now.   While doing a quick cleanup in the Studio I happen to notice a brown mark on my cute little wall hanging.  The light must have been hitting it just the right way because it looks good from here, right?

But lets take a closer look...AKKK!  WHY!  HOW!  OH NO!  See the light brown line above the green?

And more brown lines a little farther down on the flower pot area. Obviously this one was never washed only spritzed with water.   How could I forget to wash it?  Whats a gal to do but run to the computer and google how to remove this ugly brown mess.  After about an hour of research online I found nothing about removing these hideous little ghost residue lines.  Of course they all said to wash the quilt as soon as its complete.  To late for that!

If this were a new blue line the plan of action would be to wash in cool water.  Since there is a lot of red in this wall hanging I was leery of cold water.  So here's the plan.  Soaking in cool water and vinegar is supposed to help remove old blue marks.  Then I added blue Dawn Dish soap to help with the possible bleeding reds, and a couple color catcher to catch any red that might bleed off.  How much of each?...I just squeezed in some Dawn I would say about 1/4 a cup, about 2 cups of White Vinegar and 2 color catchers.

Giving it a quick swish to mix it all together.

The bottle of vinegar was set on top to submerge the entire thing.  Then it was left to set and work it's magic for about 12 hours.

Well there was no magic in this mixture,  it looked a little fainter but the marks were still visible.  So I scrubbed...still visible.  If I dry this they may get darker and they would definitely be set in by the heat.

Plan 2...Hydrogen Peroxide.  A quick soaking, a light hand scrub and let it stand for about 2 hours.

It didn't do anything.

Plan 3...dump the original mixture in the washer along with a half gallon of vinegar.  I let it stand for a few hours then run a gentle cycle.

STUBBORN stain!  It barely made a difference but it seemed a little lighter.

 Plan 4...About 1/2 cup of Dawn dish detergent and Hot Water in a heavy duty cycle.

It looks like it might have worked!  But is it all really gone?

Maybe, It sure looks gone.  

But I'm not taking the chance and putting it in the dryer.  So I hung it to dry in the studio in front of a fan.

After drying it looks good, but we'll see if the stain returns after hanging on the wall for a few months.

~ Lea Anne ~

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Monday, January 15, 2018

~ I Love Home Grand Prize Giveaway! ~

Just wanted to pop in for a quick reminder about the huge Grand Prize Giveaway for the I Love Home Quilt Block of Month hosted by Jacquelynne Steves.  Valued at $200 it's worth taking the time to pop over to Jacquelynnes blog to enter.  

The quilt along is over but you can still get the pattern free for the next few days.  After January 31, 2018 they will NO LONGER be free.  This is the LAST CHANCE to get them FREE! You can find all the information for the free quilt pattern by clicking here.  

  As a featured blogger in this quilt along we were given the freedom to do what ever we wanted with the blocks.  Below is my Finished quilt.  You can see more of the details I added to my quilt by clicking here.

There were so many creative bloggers and quilters with some unique ideas.  You can find tons of  I Love Home quilt inspiration for your blocks by visiting the  Facebook group called Sew Quilty Friends and the Pinterest group.

Leaving a comment on this blog post WILL NOT will not enter you in the giveaway.

~  Lea Anne ~
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Thursday, January 11, 2018

~ Getting Romantic ~

As soon as I saw this new line of fabric I fell in love.  This is First Romance by Kristyne Czepuryk of Pretty by Hand, made for Moda.  Isn't it just the sweetest?   Now comes the hard part...cutting away the plastic and removing the ribbon.

It took a little time I finally did it...And OH MY GOODNESS!  My knees went weak and my heart began to flutter.  Two hours later I came to my senses and chose a few little lovelies for my next quilt.  Before this line was released for sale I started designing quilts just for this bundle.  About 20 quilts were designed but only four made the cut.  And from that four I plan to make at  two.  Both are quick and easy quilts with large blocks.

So the process began.  Below is my fat quarters drying after being starched.  The starching process is very simple.... a Rubbermaid kitchen container with liquid starch.  I refold the fabric to fit the container, lay all my fat quarters in the container and pour the starch mixture in.  After the fabric absorbs the starch I carefully squeeze out the excess.  Then hang on my frame with a fan and space heater blowing on them.  When almost dry(about 45 minutes later) I start pressing each piece.  The pressing(not ironing) while still damp helps to preshrink the fabric.  

A few hours later I'm well on my way to having a quilt top made.  

I couldn't help myself....I added a little Lakehouse Drygoods(green) to the mix.

Hope to see you in a few days with a completed quilt!

~  Lea Anne ~
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Monday, January 8, 2018

~ A Finish! ~ En Provence

Happy Monday quilting friends!  Kick off your snow boots and come on in.  You might want to grab a cup of something warm and shimmy up close to my space heater cause it's a little chilly in the  Podunk studio.  

I've got something to share with you today that is sure add a little sunshine to this cold day and warm things up.  It's taken just a little over a year to finish but it was worth the wait.  Every November Bonnie Hunter shares a free Mystery quilt.  This was the  Mystery for 2016/17 called En Provence. It's no longer free but the pattern can be purchased here.  Being a Bonnie follower for around 10 yrs you would think I had made one of her quilt patterns by now.   Bonnie's style is super scrappy and more often than not I'm in awe of her creativity.  So finally I took on the challenge and swore to the fabric fairies above to keep up with this mystery.  Bonnie crams it all into about a month so it should be easy.  You see, I've tried other mysteries and block of the months over the years and usually I poop out around month three or four and they become UFO's.   I tried my best, I swear I did, but something happened when it came time to add the borders to this quilt.  It was shoved in a box and....a year later it was brought out to be finished.

One of my ideas to help keep me motivated to finish was to use only fabric I LOVED.

As you can see there's tons of my treasured stash of Lakehouse Drygoods along with other bright happy fabrics.  Sadly it still wasn't enough to keep the quilting mojo motivated.   While quilting this I would stop from time to time.... looking at the pretty fabrics...petting them and wishing there were bolts of them in my studio.  Those PKM florals....sigh....LOVE....

The backing is from the Riley Blake line Bloom and Bliss by Nadra Ridgeway.   It was a great thrifty find at Ben Franklin Crafts in New Albany Indiana for $2.99 a yard.  The colors were perfect!

Because this quilt ended with pieced borders, a very small quarter inch binding was used to finish the quilt with out adding any more color or movement.   I love how the red star stops the quilt but the quilt continues out past them with little pops of low volume prints.  

Now that its complete I can honestly say I love it.  Will I do another Bonnie mystery?  Never say never....maybe after all the clues have be revealed.

 Thanks for stopping by my little spot in Podunk.

~ Lea Anne ~

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