Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Peanut Butter & Jam Love

I have been looking for a hand stitching project to mess with while watching movies.  I've tried EPP and love piecing the hexies...I just hate piecing them together into something.  I'm trying to learn how to knit, but that is slow going.

I had a mini light bulb moment when I saw Hadley's cross stitching post.  Maybe this is the thing for me!  So I went over to Wee Little Stitches and had a shop.  I found a pattern that was screaming my name.

I love peanut butter and jam.  Raspberry jam with Skippy smooth peanut butter on toast, specifically.  There are very few things in the world that make me happier.  

Anyway, this was my first attempt at cross stitching and I truly enjoyed myself. It travelled beautifully, was perfect in front of the TV and it looks fab hanging in my kitchen.  I think I am onto a winner!  Thanks, Hadley, for pointing me in a new direction!

Monday, October 29, 2012

It's Here! My Tote Has Arrived!

It's funny.  While I was stitching away making my Mouthy Stitches tote for my partner, I kind of forgot that someone else was making one for me!  I know totes were jumping up daily in the flickr photostream, but I was looking at them more as inspirational eye candy to give ideas on the many ways you can personalize the tutorial.  I had not been thinking of one of these bags as mine.

Still, the postie arrived with a gorgeous little package for me over the weekend.  It was PERFECT timing as I was feeling ill for the past few days and had formed a little nest on the couch.  I was there for days, but perked up as soon as my parcel arrived.  Look at what I found inside!

All wrapped up in green....

Wait!  Who is this little cutie?  

The wrapping paper quickly became Clarkson's.  Nothing makes him happier than a sunbeam and paper that crinkles when he sits on it.  That's one happy cat, right there.

The tote!  Look at this gorgeous tote! This beauty was made by Kerry of Penny Dog (the shop) and blog.  Do take a second to hop over to Kerry's flickr photostream.  She makes beautiful things!

Oh, this tote is so pretty!  Can you see the swirly quilting?  Can you see she even stitched little red flowers into the front garden of the house?  How awesome is that?  And the sheep.  The beautiful little appliquĂ© sheep.  Awesome.

On the back you can see her FMQ skills with the loopy quilting.  How cool!

And inside is a delicious bright floral print.  I love this lining.  Love it, love it.  I don't know the print name/designer, though.  Can someone tell me?  Kerry?  I'd love more of this for the old stash.

I wish I was smart enough to take a photo of the key fob....Kerry made a beautiful selvedge key fob that is attached to my car keys...that are off with my other half for the day.  I bet he looks manly with that hanging out of his pocket :)  

Kerry, thank you.  Thank you to, co-mamas Susan and Hadley.  Mouthy Stitches Round 2 was a total hit for me :)

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Mama Told Me I Was A Winner

You may remember way back last Tuesday when the Mama Said Sew line arrived at Fluffy Sheep Quilting.  Do you remember that there was a little celebratory giveaway?  Well, let's meet our winner.  Lucky number 39:

It's Emily's Mum, or Miss Jo.  Congratulations!  What are her favorite prints, you ask?  

So, I did ask again just to be sure.  Her tastes might have changed this week.  Jo stayed true to herself and chose Sew Texty and Sew Red as her prize.  Well done, Jo!  Thanks to everyone who played along!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Chatting Away with Silvia of Sewing Princess

Today I've been whisked away to gorgeous Italy to chat away with Silvia, of Sewing Princess, about the beginning of Fluffy Sheep Quilting (the shop), choosing fabrics and other tasty bits and pieces.  To see the interview, hop over here.

Thanks, Silvia!  This was fun!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Fingers Crossed

I am so happy to announce that Fluffy Sheep Quilting (the shop) has been listed as a finalist for the 2012 Irish Website Awards in the Small Enterprise category!  Woo hoo!  Of the 72 nominated sites in this category, we have made it to the final 8.

The winner will be announced one week from today on 1 November.  Please send your happy vibes to Dublin this week in the hopes the choose Fluffy Sheep Quilting as a 2012 winner.  That would be absolutely spectacular!

A huge thank you to Susan, Hadley, Sarah, Catherine, Kat , Pat and my parents who spent a generous amount of time helping me refine the design of the website.  They also provided a massive amount of emotional support and encouragement as the shop was being launched.  You guys are amazing and I am lucky to have you as friends.  Thank you.  I worked with Block 5 Design here in Galway for the graphic design of the site and actually implementing the coding, etc to  support the shop.  They were FANTASTIC.  If you are ever looking for help with an app or a website, call them immediately.

That is the  happy news around here.  Hope you are having a great day too!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Community Quilted

It's back!  In true community spirit, the Community Quilt has returned from its summer holiday at Trudi's!  Trudi put her incredible quilting design skills to work and made the Community Quilt just gorgeous.  She took what I had in mind of a nearly impossible quilting suggestion and translated it into actual quilting.  I could not be happier.

This quilt is about 96 inches square, so she's a brute.  Here you see about 2/3 of her hanging from the clothes line.  I couldn't make the line go any higher to show you the full quilt!  Eeek!   Thank goodness Trudi could quilt something this size - I tried and failed miserably!

Can you see the quilting in each white space?  Trudi has quilted in four trinity symbols, but seeing them now in person they look a whole lot like cathedral windows blocks some times.  It really depends on how the quilt catches my eye. 

I started piecing this quilt back in June 2011. It amazes me how much my quilting life/style/tastes have changed.  This is quite traditional and subdued compared to many things I like to make now.  That being said, this is one of my two favorite quilts of all time.  I am simply thrilled with how Trudi has quilted it.  Thank you, Miss Trudi.  I can not wait to get a binding on and finish off this 18 month labor of love.

Monday, October 22, 2012

One Block Down....

...many more to go.  Still, this one rather large block is a great accomplishment as it is my first time sewing curves with the view to making a quilt top.  I've now semi-tackled the fear. 

In the past I've made one Retroflower block and two little baby quilts for Blankets of Love with a DP block, but they were easy to get my head around as they were quite small.  This quilt, however, will grow to a twin size and is therefore slightly overwhelming to me.  That being said, Leanne has been an awesome cheerleader and with the completion of this one gigantic block my Mod Pop quilt seems do-able.  Whew.  Now I just have to get serious and start stitching.

If you have a minute, hop over to the Mod Pop QAL flickr group.  There you'll see many variations in fabric choices for this pattern.  They will really get your creative juices flowing!

Friday, October 19, 2012

Mouthy Stitches Tote Bag: Finished!

Here it is, partner!  Will you like this tote?  I truly hope you do as I put a lot of time, effort and thought into this little guy.

As part of Mouthy Stitches, we are all making a tote bag using this tutorial.  It's a really simple, direct tute with lots of play room to personalize it as you go.  In Mouthy Stitches, we were to piece at least one side and spice it up for our partner so long as it resembled the original size/structure and remained reversible.  Want to see what I created for my partner?

I pieced this front using the Lone Starburst templates from Six White Horses.  The Chicopee fabric by Denyse Schmidt works here, I think.

I should say I didn't hang your bag on a diseased tree in the back garden.  The leaves are changing into their autumn oranges and browns.  Just in case you were wondering :)

The outer front and back were layered with batting and quilted.  The front is both hand and machine quilted to echo the star.


The back just has little 3 inch squares of Chicopee prints that made me happy on Essex linen.  It's quilted with little wavy lines in black thread.  Quilting wavy lines to look irregular is harder to do than you think!

The lining is Summersville with two pockets of Essex linen.  There's a little ribbon loop on the edge to hook your key fob onto.  I hate loosing my keys in the bottom of a bag and thought you might be the same, partner.

The other half of the lining is straight up Summersville.  The lining has a fusible interfacing on both sides to add to the stiffness of the bag.  It's still soft and has give, but it won't fall over as soon as you let go of the handles.

While I was out taking photos, the girls came over to see what the fuss was all about.  They were totally interested, but were not allowed to get too close!

There you go, partner.  I hope you like it!  I hope you use it often and that it holds up for you (eeek!).  I enjoyed thinking of you while I stitched away the past few weeks.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Super Awesome Mail Day!!

Looking for the Mama Said Sew giveaway?  Click here.

I am SOOO excited! Guess what was waiting for me at home after a long day at work?  There was a rather heavy parcel from Sarah holding my Japanese charms from her Japanese Charm Swap!  There is just something so awesome about Japanese prints and to have a variety like this totally makes my day.

I have not had a proper look through them all yet, but these six caught my eye immediately.  Frogs! Elephants! Sparkly piggies and adorable bunnies.  Awesome, awesome, awesome.  Thank you, Sarah, for organizing us all!

But wait!  What is this nice little unassuming envelope next to my pile of charms?  Yippee!  It's fabric tape from Mary!  Look!  Look at what is inside!

I can not wait to pack up my next pile of bee blocks and put a little bit of this happiness on the envelope.  Look out, Annabella!  If you are looking for a bit of fabric tape (or bunting or a super notebook cover!) to spice up your home, hop over to Mary's etsy shop for a peek.  Mary, I am super thrilled.  Thank you.

As a general comment from now until about May, I am sorry for the quality of my photos.  It gets dark early here in Ireland and I just can't get home before the sun starts to set.  I will try my best, but can't make promises :)

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Mouthy Stitches Key Fob

Looking for the Mama Said Sew give away?  Click here.

As part of the MS swap, we are making a key fob as the one and only extra goodie to go into our parcel.  I have never made something like this, so I kind of made it up as I went along.

I wanted something semi-firm so that it holds its shape, but not too hard as I hate shoving my hand in my purse and getting stabbed by something at the bottom.  I decided to go with Echino linen/cotton mix and a bit of interfacing, which seemed to do the trick.

I got a little carried away and made two.  If I am honest, the only reason I stopped is because I only had two hooks from U Handbag.  Above you see one side, then below you'll see them flipped over.  I love, love, love the little car and scooter, but then realized maybe my partner wouldn't want to use it for her car keys.  Maybe a happy little bird would be better suited.

So, partner, might one of these float your boat?  Or will I try it again with something else?  Please speak up...I am more than happy to make changes as I want you to be excited when it pops up in your parcel.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Mama Said Sew Giveaway

Finally!  Mama Said Sew by Sweetwater for Moda has finally arrived at Fluffy Sheep Quilting. I love this combination of neutral cream, black and grey with a pop of red.  Gorgeous.  To see what prints we have available, skip on over here and have a peek.  Yum!

Let's celebrate the arrival of Mama Said Sew at Fluffy Sheep Quilting with a giveaway!  To one lucky winner I would like to offer your two favorite FQs.  Just hop over to the shop and have a look at the prints on offer, then come back here and leave a comment telling me which two are your favorites.  Please use the name of the print found on the shop website in your entry...just so I know you've been there :) Easy peasy.

I will draw the winner one week from today using a random number generator. International entries are welcome, but no reply emails are not.  If you think you may be a no-reply commenter, leave your email address in the comment.  If the RNG picks you, I will email you to get your mailing address.  If you do not reply within 3 days, I will choose another winner.

That's it.  Good luck!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Do.Good Stitches: October

This month in the CARE circle of Do. Good Stitches we are making Patchwork Wheel blocks using this tutorial.  I was not really in a sewing mood yesterday afternoon, but decided these HAD to be done last weekend to be sure I stay up to date with my bee blocks.

I must say, the direct simplicity of this tutorial and the bright colors in this block brought me right out of my slump and made me happy to sew.  

Whew!  Only one bee left this month.  I think I'm going to make it!

Friday, October 12, 2012

Mouthy Stitches Progress

We are about half way through our stitching time in the Mouthy Stitches swap, organized by Susan, Hadley and myself.  As I am 1/3 swap mama, I absolutely can not fall behind in stitching my tote.  Want to see my progress so far?  A block.  One silly little block.  That took me 3 evenings to piece. 

This block was made using the Lone Starburst paper piecing templates from Six White Horses.  It is a very basic paper piecing project, but at times my brain could just not bend the way it should.  Anyway, it is finished and I am quite happy with it.  Clearly it still needs to be squared and trimmed, but I am on the way.

I used the Chicopee line by Denyse Schmidt for the star...mostly because the colors are pretty.  The idea is to use Essex Linen to frame it, for the straps and on the pieced back.  I think the little star looks nice there next to the grey.

Side note: Those of you in the Modern Stitches Bee know I am bee mama for November. I was playing around with the idea of a scrappy Lone Starburst for my month.  This was my tester block.  You'll be thrilled to know I would not even think of making you spend 3 of your evenings stitching this block.  Not in a million years.  A world wide sigh of relief was just heard here in Galway.

Now I need to find a lining fabric.  I like this stripe from the Ladies' Stitching Club as it picks up the blues and the plum purples.

I also like the floral print in Ladies' Stitching Club with the blues, plums and pieces of the pink that you see in a few of the purple prints.  I think you are a grand floral kind of gal.  Is this right for you?

And the final option is a hashed blue from Summersville.  Might this be more your speed?  

So, partner, what do you think?  Do you like the star?  Which is your favorite lining?  Send a little hint, please!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Sew & Bee Happy: October Blocks

Wendi was our bee mama this month in Sew & Bee Happy.  As she had already started a granny quilt and just needed a few more blocks to finish it off.  Perfect for this bee as there are only 10 of us and we each make 1 block a month.  Wendi was looking for scrappy fabrics with a white background, but particularly red prints.  We'll, I'm your gal.

It's really white...honest.  And there is a difference in color between the orange dotty print and the outer red print...honest.  I'm so sorry for the night time photo, but with winter coming light is hard to find in the evenings!

As you know, Granny and I have had our bouts in the past.  This block came together surprisingly easily. Wendi, I hope it suits your quilt well.  It's winging its way to you!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Let's finish 'em off!

Here we are in the last quarter of the year.  2012 is (shockingly) coming to an end, so it's time to finish up a few projects.  The lovely Miss Rhonda is hosting another Finish A Long and I am really looking forward to taking part! This is what I would like to check off my UFO list:

1. A set of six place mats.  These were started as a teaching prop, but I really want them to be finished and put to use before the end of the year.

2. Mod pop.  I have the pieces cut for a lap quilt, but they are not pieced into blocks. My goal is that by the end of the quarter I have a twin sized quilt finished off.  Yes, with the binding on and every thing.

3. Chaos. I am in love with this quilt. I am currently piecing the fabric together...to cut it up again.  This will be a small 9 block quilt that will be finished off (hopefully) shortly.

4. Community quilt.  Nearly there, now! The amazing Trudi is busy quilting as we post our FAL goals, so I should have it to bind in the very near future.

Photo stolen from Trudi.

5. Mouthy Stitches tote.  I'm not giving away the secret quite yet, but rest assured the fabric has been chosen and the piecing has started.  This will be finished off by the end of the month.

That is everything! Best of luck to those of you playing along this quarter.  I look forward to seeing your finishes too!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Modern Stitching Bee: October

This month the amazingly talented Emily is our bee mama in the Modern Stitching Bee.  She asked for two scrappy wonky stars, but in reverse.  The star should be white and the background made of scrappy bits.  Gosh I love this block.

I wish I was as smart as her in coming up with this idea.  I nearly want to steal it for my month, but folks might notice seeing as I have November and all...

Emily, I loved making these.  You completely brightened my day.  I hope you like them too!

Winner Winner Chicken Dinner

We have a winner!   Miss Allison will be sent four FQs of Oh Deer for telling us what her two favorite prints are in the shop.  She likes:

She was lucky  number 122 out of 202 entries:

What will Miss Allison choose from the Oh Deer line?  These little pretties:

Thank you to everyone who entered into the giveaway.  It was great fun! 

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