Christmas stockings in progress

I have been wanting to make Christmas stockings for my husband and myself since we got married. I decided to wait until after we had children to do it, though, so we could have a family set. I did not get to make them in time for Kiarda’s first Christmas, given that at that time I was averaging about three hours of sleep a night spread across the entire night.

Anyways, I finally made a decision about how best to create the images in my head about how I wanted them to look: wool felt! I’m about halfway done with them so far, so here’s a picture.

Each will have a white cuff with the person’s name on it. There will be a few embroidered details, as well as a few snowflake sequins added to the background of each one. I think I will opt for a “less is more” with these – I want them to be whimsical and too much detail can detract from that. The stockings will be lined. I may use fun prints for the insides…will have to dig through my stash and see what I can find!

Pillow for Kiarda

I finished my embroidered pillow case for Kiarda! The zipper is a bit wonky, but it was truly an afterthought so whatever. (She won’t notice, I think!) I’m pleased overall with how the embroidery came out. I have never done “fill” embroidery, and I clearly got better as I went along. I only have one picture right now, and it was taken with my phone’s camera as I lent my regular camera to a friend for the weekend. I’ll post close-ups when I get it back. The letters came out much better than the lady bugs, but I did the bugs first and well, there was a learning curve. You get the idea, though!

Country Calendar BOM – April

I got another Country Calendar BOM block done! I still need to do March. I haven’t decided what background fabric to use yet, so I went ahead and did April’s.

I opted not to put whiskers on him; I thought it would be too much black, and I was happy with it as it were. So here is my block!
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I got tagged

Toni tagged me for a blog meme. I haven’t done memes on this blog (I don’t think) but I figure this one might be helpful for potential swap partners. She tagged me with the Honest Scrap Award! All I need to do for part 1 is reveal 10 facts about myself that I haven’t necessarily shared with anyone.
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1. I studied abroad in Lyon, France, when I was in college. I got to fence while I was there, too – and my salle was only about three blocks from my apartment!

2. I have the uncanny ability to estimate my grocery total within $5 when I hit the checkout. I don’t keep track of prices while I shop, either.

3. Every Tuesday my co-workers and I have “Fantasy Sex Day.” We each pick a celebrity that we’re going to sleep with for the week. It’s loads of fun. You can’t repeat people within a 6-month period, and you can specify someone at a specific point in time (e.g. Leonardo di Caprio in “The Beach” but not in “Titanic).

4. One of the neatest conversations I ever had was with a homeless guy in Rome. We sat on the street corner and talked about life for over an hour.

5. I played French horn for almost ten years.

6. I *love* watching the Olympics, almost the point of obsession.

7. I’m a beer snob even though I don’t drink beer.

8. Going to a male OB/GYN doesn’t weird me out.

9. I love all things handwork – hand quilting, hand applique, embroidery – but not cross stitch. It drives me batty.

10. My DH and I are both online gamers.

Now, I must list 5 addictions:
1. The internet
2. Cheese, peanut butter, and chocolate (hey, they’re all foods!)
3. Fabric
4. Collecting kitchen gadgets
5. Sleeping in/taking naps

I’m not going to tag anyone (not even sure if I have five readers here?!?!), but feel free to fill them out as a comment. 😀

New BOM

I found this super cute BOM online. The girl that makes it is about my age and Dutch. Her blog is in both Dutch and English, and she makes super cute stuff. The instructions/patterns are in English. I’m using fusible for the applique but doing hand embroidery for each one.

BOM: http://elliesquiltplace.web-log.nl/mijn_weblog/
(Button at the bottom of the page)

I am going to use a little white in every month, so I can use white sashing to tie them together. That’ll also give me leeway to have fun with the background fabrics!

January:
The January is done in orange floss that matches the nose. You can’t really see the detail on the buttons, but if you go look at the pattern you can see what it looks like there.

February. Outer heart stitched in pink, inner heart stitched in white.
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Stockings

I was commissioned to make some Christmas stockings for a friend and her family. I will be giving them to her today. They turned out well overall. The kids’ stockings are the red ones, and Molly and Jeff’s are the green ones. I also made a third red one for whenever they have their next kiddo. I couldn’t put it together yet, though, because I have to do the embroidery before the stocking is put together. The embroidery isn’t consistent stocking-to-stocking, but what can you do when it’s freehand?!?! Oh well.

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AAQG Show

The Austin Area Quilt Guild biennial show was this weekend. There were lots of great quilts, including many made by friends and fellow bee-members. I did some volunteer work, including check-out at the end which was crazy hectic. My mom came down on Saturday from Dallas for the show. She behaved herself well overall, but some things are just never going to change…

I found multicolored variegated embroidery floss, which made me very happy! I also got three more mini wholecloth pre-printed quilt tops, a Halloween embroidery pattern, and a needleworked scissor case handmade by a guild member and sold in the boutique (all proceeds go to the guild). I’ll put pictures up tomorrow, as the camera is currently dead and I need to look for the extra batteries.

Here are a few of the quilts. I didn’t get pictures of all of them (there were more than 400!), but I got quite a few and put them up in a Photobucket album.

Here was the Best In Show. It also won Excellence in Design and 1st place in the Art Quilt Category. It was made by Bill Horne, who works at The Quilt Store here in Austin. He’s the first male quilter to win a BIS in Texas!

Here are my two quilts! I met my goal of not getting reamed by the judges. I have a few minor things to work on but overall I got good comments. I even got a “lovely hand stitching” from a judge who is known to have a critical eye for handquilting! Whee!

(My little one blended into the grey curtain, bah.) Not a good picture – can’t see the wholecloth design! Oh well.

Here are my favorite two – the picture came out small on one of them, though:

Here’s a close-up:

This Hawaiian quilt got Excellence in Hand Quilting and 1st in the large applique cateogory. This is my long-term quilting goal – to make a Hawaiian quilt. I can only hope it will be as intricate and beautiful as this one: