I’m feeling challenged!

And I love it.  I don’t know about you, but I have a serious weakness when it comes to signing up for on-line Challenges, BOMs, Blog-hops and just about anything else that allows me to connect with other like-minded creative quilters.

Today I’m especially excited to share a bunch of things with you guys.  First…I got a package in the mail just a few minutes ago from my QuiltCon 2018  “Make a Mini, Make a Friend” swap partner.  I’m going to open it right now.  Here goes…this may take a few minutes, its taped up pretty good.  Go get a coffee and come back, I should have it open by then.

Ta Da.  Here it is.

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Thank you so much Nancy B., for the mini quilt and the pretty card that came with it.  It will have a happy home in my sewing room, where I spend many hours every day.  And you must have been reading my mind….I love bold floral fabrics.  Great choices.

I’m sure I posted about a gazillion photos of the mini quilt I sent to Nancy on Instagram, but being the hopeless self-promoter that I am, I had to post another one. Check it out here.

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FYI I was totally inspired by a mini quilt I saw on Pinterest designed by Jen at mjandco-quilting.blogspot.ca. and all the credit for this great mini belongs to her.  Click here to see her version  Don’t you love this wonky star idea. It spoke to me. Actually it woke me up in the middle of the night, poking at my brain, and wouldn’t let me go back to sleep until I decided to make it.

FYI, I took the picture before I decided to continue blogging and sharing my stories at Freckled Fox Quiltery.  (Which is, of course, why its watermarked GRANNYcanQuilt, rather than Freckled Fox Quiltery.)..sigh.

On February 5, 2018 I posted about another challenge that I’m involved in. You can read about it here. Its called #30QuiltDesignChallenge2018.  Its home is on Instagram.  If you have a few minutes, you should check it out.  I’m not sure if I’ll make it through this one. It’s a challenge that is OMG so so freaking challenging.  Probably because there are a whole lot of incredibly talented folks taking part in this one and they are all bringing their “A” game.  Seriously what was I thinking when I thought I could design 30 original quilt blocks before mid-April.  Here are the last few I posted on Instagram in no particular order.

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I have eight done so far…which explains why I changed my goal to try to get 10 done before the end of February.  Please cross your fingers and toes that the design fairies will shine on me over the next few days.

AND THEN THIS HAPPENED:

Yesssiree Bob  it’s another blog hop.  Its called Wish Upon a Star and it makes me smile.  This one runs from May 21 to May 25, 2018. My date to post a “star anything” on my blog is May 24 and Holy Heck Hermione, I am so ready for this one.  I received 14 beautiful wonky stars in the mail over the last few weeks (because of a wonky star block exchange that I recently took part in) and now I know exactly what I’ll do with them.  I’ll make them into either a wall hanging or a baby quilt and Bob’s Your Uncle, I’ll be ready to go. I betcha you have some stars in your closet that don’t have a home yet.  If so, you should enter this blog hop.  Go and visit Carol at Just Let Me Quilt to get all the details.  And of course, come back regularly to see how I’m doing.

Holy Cow, there is another one…

It’s a whole new adventure for me.  Its called a “Row Along” and  I’m planning to devote a whole post or 10 to it as I go along.  I am beside myself with excitement and just a wee bit anxious because this one is really going to test me. Thank goodness I have a few months to get ready and choose my happy place.  If you want further details about this one, click here for all the details. 

I’m going to stop now…I think I may be hyperventilating…Did you do something creative today?

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I must be forgetting something

Because I’m all caught up with my sewing projects!.  Its such a bizarre feeling.  Its actually causing my left eye to twitch and my heart to palpitate because of course I’m thinking I must have forgotten something important.  What could it be?……

Maybe its the housework….I haven’t done any in so long, I think I’ve forgotten how. Thank goodness for a perfectly perfect hubby who willingly does all my chores for me, along with all of his, while my head floats around in the clouds dreaming up yet another quilt block or setting.

So in honour of my hubby (and because as aforementioned I am all caught up with everything else, quilt related anyway) I thought I would search out a poem that properly sets out my feelings for him.

Here it is.  And golly I wish I knew who wrote it, because it is about the most eloquent poem I’ve ever read.

I love you sweetheart, very much
Really…Totally…Completely
From the top of your grey(ish)  head
To the bottom of your feetly

Which is why, we are going on a Valentine’s Day date on Wednesday evening to a really swanky restaurant  (and yes, he suggested it, I told you he’s perfect…only thing I had to do was choose the restaurant and make the reservation, which I was very happy to do).

I am wishing everyone on this planet a happy day on Wednesday and every day.

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We are a Perfect Pair

I think I can, I think I can.

This is  an event I’m excited about and at the same time, fearful of.  I cannot tell a lie, this is gonna be a handful for me, but I think I will do all right with a little help from my friends. And you know who you are….

Of course I’m talking about this Instagram Challenge.

 

Am I freakin crazy?  YES. I. AM., but I’m pretty sure you knew that already!

For more info and all the details on how this challenge works….pop over here to visit Sandra, an awesome blogger who shares her adventures in life and quilting at Musings of a Menopausal Melon  Mmm! Quilts;  then grab your pencil and paper (or EQ8 or another Quilt Design Program if that’s your thing) and start designing.

As is often the case in challenges, the real world is gonna cause some situations where I may not be able to keep up the schedule I’ve set for myself.  Sooooooooo, I’ve worked ahead a tiny bit.  I have four designs in my sketchbook to share and some ideas for another two or three. Maybe, perhaps, possibly I’m going to try to design a Medallion Quilt (yessiree Bob, in for a penny, in for a pound, as my Aunt Maggie used to say.)

The saving grace in this challenge is that I don’t have to post a quilt block design every day….I have until April 15 to get them out of my head, onto paper, and then posted to Instagram.  That works out to about 3 per week.

I plan to blog about the designs I post, and BTW I’m very worried  that shallow green-eyed varminty creature who lives inside me may struggle to get out.  I already know its going to make me crazy jealous when I see the blocks all the other challengers share. So…if I seem a little snippy, or need an intervention sometime soon, I hope I can count on all of you.

So here are the first two block drawings I’ve posted since Feb. 3.

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Lozenges – Design 1

 

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No Name Yet – Ideas?

So that’s what is going on in my mind this week….along with about a million other things…Saturday is our first sew in for the PEIMQG Raffle Quilt.  I am excited that we are making a quilt from a block that I designed….and that I will someday share here with all of you.  If, of course, it turns out the way I imagine it.

Did you do something creative today?

 

 

 

Drunkard’s Path….by any other name!

Hello everyone, especially to the team of fabulous Guild Ladies who are working with me on the PEIMQG Raffle Quilt for 2018.

This picto-toot sets out how to construct a variation of a traditional block (Drunkard’s Path) in a modern way. I am using the same tools as Cath from Wombat Quilts does in her excellent tutorial.  She also has way better photos…just saying.  Click right here because you should definitely visit her blog if you are planning to make a quilt featuring the Drunkard’s Path block in the near future.

This is a method to cut convex and concave curves using an EZ Curve (Circle Cut) Ruler rather than a template.  Then we sew these units together without any pins.  Yay!

This tutorial will make a 5 1/2″ unfinished Dancing Duo unit just like this one.

Things you need:

  • EZ Curve (Circle Cut) Ruler
  • Rotary Cutter (I used the 18mm blade for this, but your 45mm blade will work fine)
  • Cutting Mat
  • 8 1/2″ (or any size larger than 6 1/2″) Square Ruler for squaring everything up
  • 6 1/2″ square of background fabric
  • 5 1/2″ square of feature fabric 1
  • 3 1/2″ square of feature fabric 2
  • Iron and Pressing Surface

This is the EZ Curve or Circle Cut Ruler; its the tool we will be using to cut the Double Dancing units. It’s available at most online shops selling notions, and maybe at your local quilt shop.  If you want to buy one from Craftsy online, go here for further information.

IMG_5657 2.JPG This is sew easy, you will be laughing at your fears in just a few minutes. I TOTALLY PROMISE!

We are going to cut 1 background “L” shaped unit and 1 quarter circle unit at the same time. Place one 6 1/2″ background square and one 5 1/2″ feature fabric #1 square on the cutting mat, with the EZ Circle Ruler positioned as set out in the picture below. Please forgive the pictures, my dog sat on the ruler and broke it (but it still works, yay). Your new ruler will be much nicer.

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Place your rotary cutter in the 10″ groove and cut out around the Arc.

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Ta Da, 1 background unit and one quarter circle unit

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Save the scraps for another project.

Next we must trim the background “L” unit to finish preparing it for sewing.

Place the background square on the cutting board with your square ruler on top.  Cut 3/8″ off both ends of the “L” shaped background piece.

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Now lets sew the unit together.  Place the L shape and the quarter circle piece right sides together as shown in the picture below. It works best for me if I place the quarter circle on top.

Put the machine needle down into the fabric and take a stitch or two.  Using a scant 1/4″  seam, sew slowly around the curve, maneuvering the bottom piece just enough without stretching it  to allow it to feed under the needle in a straight line. I lift the top fabric to allow me to see where the bottom fabric is relative to the edge of my presser foot.  This provides just enough tension to allow the curve to go smoothly under the needle. Don’t panic when you get down to the last couple inches.  I know it doesn’t look like there is enough fabric to make it around the curve. Just. Trust. Me.  There is enough and it will work out.  I sometimes use a tweezer to help encourage everything to stay put as the last little bit goes under the needle.

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After sewing the seam, press it from the back — toward the feature fabric.  It may be a tiny bit wonky, but no problem because now you get to trim it to 6″.

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Square up and ta-da you are finished with the first Arc.

If you only want one Arc, you’re done.  And its a beautiful thing.  However…. for the Dancing Duo unit that our Guild is making we are putting another Arc into this unit….Yup we are.  Do not panic, there is nothing new to learn now.  You follow exactly the same steps you just took to put in the first Arc.

Lets do it again (with a few less photos, because really you know what’s happening now…right?

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Line the ruler and fabric up again on the fold line and the centre line.  This time, place your rotary cutter in the 6″ groove and cut out another arc.

Put the cut out piece aside, because you will be using it again later.  Take a second now, to cut another arc using the 3 1/2″ square of feature fabric #2. Rotary cut this one in the 6″ groove also.

Just like with the first arc we have to cut 3/8″ off each end of the “L” shape, (no picture, but it’s exactly the same process as when you cut it earlier).

Next we sew the second arc into the unit.  Referring to the photos and instructions from the first part of the tutorial, take the fabric #2 arc and the “L” shaped piece over to the sewing machine, again carefully align the two pieces (same as before)  and using a scant 1/4″ seam and a slow speed, stitch around the curve.

Press towards the second feature fabric, and then you can square this unit up to 5 1/2″.

Now you can do the dance of joy, or give yourself a great big round of applause….and perhaps a glass of merlot and a big old chunk of expensive chocolate, because you just rocked a double drunkard’s path unit…and you did it with no pins, no pain and (hopefully) no profanity.

Make A Mini Make A Friend

Did you sign up for this QuiltCon 2018 Swap Exchange?  I did and Holy Heck Hermione its almost time to ship off a mini-quilt to my swap partner, Nancy.

This has been such a scrumptious  swap.  I LOVE the sneak peaks I’ve been seeing of what folks are making on Instagram for a few months now.  I am all in a tizzy to get mine mailed and there are no words to describe how eager I am to get one back in the mail.

I betcha you wish you were involved in this……of course you do! Because its so freakin much fun.

Here for your viewing pleasure, are the sneak peeks I posted about the mini I made.  Stay tuned to Instagram for a final foto soon.

Did you do something creative today?

The Avenue

a Quilt by Louise Papas for Jen Kingwell Designs.

Need I say more?  I thought not. Click here to go visit   this awesome shop, should you want to purchase this pattern or one of the gazillion other beautiful things for sale there.

The Avenue is hands-down one of the coolest curved quilt block patterns in the world.  It takes a very traditional drunkard’s path block and effortlessly walks it down a completely different path….  In this case, its a fabulous Avenue comprised of modern trees in bloom.

I knew the instant I saw it, that I would make it mine…and I did…. my blocks are built, but not sewn together because once they were finished, I decided I wanted to make this quilt even more awesome like Jeanne Coglianese did.  I am happy to share a glimpse of her take on this quilt (with her permission of course). And check out that phenomenal quilting.  Sigh…., if I was a cat, I’d be purring right now.

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now lets come back to Earth….and see what I decided to do with mine.

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If you follow the Facebook Page “Jen Kingwell Designs Group”, you will find a photo of a section of my finished blocks on the page header.  Because I cannot help tooting my own horn a tiny bit, I thought I’d share the “Avenue” that was determined to march down the centre of my quilt.

Someday soon, this will be sewn together, quilted and saved for an upcoming quilt show that the PEIMQG is contemplating putting together in 2019.

A change is as good as a rest

Hello all. It’s me, Velda AKA GRANNYcanQUILT. I have news! Great News!

After lots of consideration and some reconsideration, I’ve decided to change things up a bit. Going forward, I’m gonna be blogging at Freckled Fox Quiltery. The name change reflects all the good things I’m planning and working towards in 2018. I’m excited for a new year and new opportunities.

FYI all my old posts are still here, so we can still look back once in a while if we want to.

If you are looking for me on Instagram, you can find me @freckledfoxquiltery. I’ll be here and there often so come visit anytime.

IMHO, this new name better reflects where we live in Eastern Canada. And yes, there really are freckled foxes on PEI. Here is a picture taken by Vera Giesbrecht, near Cavendish PEI, which is right up the road from where I live.

Here on the Island, foxes are protected animals and can often be seen soaking up the sun on the roadside. The cool ticking on the coat (which looks like freckles doesn’t it?) is the result of indigenous red foxes meeting and mixing with silver foxes that were brought here by folks who were in the fox farming industry (long gone, thank goodness) many years ago. I think they are beautiful and unique creatures and I am thrilled to use this purely PEI image as the inspiration for my new blog name.