Tuesday, February 26, 2013

What Do I Bookmark–Part 4


Other places you might go to find inspiration and free patterns are fabric company websites.  There are well known ones like Debbie Mumm who has a free 6 installment quilt sampler pattern for 2013.  Isn’t this owl block for January so cute?10562212013177_tn

Check out the Hoffman Fabrics webpage free pattern page to find over 150 free patterns.  This is one of them called Autumn Song.  Isn’t it an interesting pattern?  If you want to use the same fabrics and make one just like it the fabrics are listed on the pattern as well.

Chestnut_quiltForty four free quilt patterns can be found on the Kona Bay website.  This pattern, Chestnut Lane, is certainly a beautiful quilt.

 Markus Brothers, is the next website I am going to share with you.  This free quilt pattern is called Tavern Collection by Heidi Pridemore for the company.  Maywood_Studio_-_Harvest_Leaves

Maywood Studio’s has free quilt patterns on it’s website too.  This one is called Harvest Tea Leaves

Moda Fabrics…free patterns here too.  This free pattern is called Wintergreen.  This website has 30-40 free patterns and a great resource.

Untitled-1Midnight Maze, a free pattern, can be found on the P&B Textiles website.  Over 40 free patterns can be found on this fabric manufacture’s website.

The last fabric website I am going to share is RJR Fabrics where I found this free pattern, Aurora Stars. This website has many, many free patterns.

Besides free patterns look for tips and tutorials, blogs, information about the fabric and designers on these fabric manufactures websites.  Remember what I said in an earlier post – the internet is like a great big encyclopedia.  You can find any information you are looking for if you just type in a few key words.  Take advantage of the free patterns offered by the fabric companies and be sure to look up all the fabric companies I didn’t list as there are many, many more.

Until Later,

Saturday, February 23, 2013

What Do I Bookmark…Part 3

Do you sew for charity?  You can find all kinds of projects to make and donate to worthy causes.  You can find local charities and make things to donate.

Do you know someone that has lost their hair due to chemotherapy?  How about making that person a soft hat to wear.  Here is a pattern to make soft hats from knits from Handcock Fabrics Store.  If you don’t know someone personally ask at a facility that does chemo and see if they would take donations and if they would give them to those that need  the hats.

Check out this website “Project Linus” where blankets/quilts are made and donated to children in need.  Again check out places in your local communities for places to donate small or large quilts.  Our guild made lap quilts for area nursing homes.  Do find out what sizes and type they would accept before making and delivering some.

How about the 1 million pillowcase challenge by AllPeopleQuilt.  You make pillowcases to donate to your local charities, children’s homes, cancer centers, etc.  Look on the website to find a list of possible places to donate pillowcases in your local communities, they have lots of free patterns too.  Our guild makes them for our small local hospital and they give a pillowcase to each child that has to be admitted to the hospital.  Like I said it is a small hospital so we can keep up with it but the nurses that belong to our guild report that the kids get so excited to know they get to take the colorful pillowcase presented to them home at the end of their stay.


Tuesday, February 19, 2013

What Do I Bookmark–Part Two

Here are a few more good resources on the internet that I have bookmarked. 

Here is a link for the International Quilt Study Center in Lincoln, Nebraska at the University of Nebraska.  This is a wonderful facility for those that can visit but they also have a great website.  You can search the vast collection and see photos of the quilts, read publications, listen to podcasts, etc.

youtube-logoHave you ever explored You Tube to see what you can learn from the many videos on any subject.  Here is one on making Piped Binding part 1 by Susan Cleveland.  Be sure to watch part 2 as well.  I have been watching videos on using my DSLR camera while I am on the treadmill each day,  I have learned lots from the many videos, but of course there are some that are not so good too.   I take the good with the not so good and turn them off and move on to better ones.


Saturday, February 16, 2013

What Do I Bookmark

I bookmark a lot of webpages to refer to later but often times I forget that I bookmarked them.  Lately I am doing more pinning than bookmarking since I can browse my pins and see actual pictures that remind me what it is and bookmarks can’t do that.  I am revisiting all my sewing/quilting bookmarks and will share some of my favorites with you.

This first web page is  Free-Quilt-Patterns.net by Four Twin Sisters.com.  This tractor is one of the free applique patterns on their website.  There are a lot of free applique patterns plus some paper pieced patterns as well.

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There are great pieced alphabets on this blog Wayne Kollinger’s Sketch Book.  He has several alphabets and has been very generous about sharing them so if you are interested take a look at his blog and be sure to search around to find all the different ones.

How about drafting your own quilt blocks – do you do it or are you afraid to try it.  Here are some instructions to begin learning how to draft some common quilt blocks.  Check out this World Wide Quilting Page on drafting

The internet is a giant resource for just about anything you want to find.   If something strikes your fancy or if you want to know how do do something spend some time and see what you can find.


Thursday, February 14, 2013

Oatmeal….Big Batch Cooking

Recently I discovered steel cut oatmeal and really enjoy fixing it for breakfast each morning.  The problem with this type of oatmeal is that it takes 20 minutes to cook and I don’t like to wait that long to eat my breakfast.  I know 20 minutes is not that long but like to just eat and not really cook in the morning too.  To solve this dilemma I cook a large batch each Sunday and eat some each day.  I did decide I wanted to vary my breakfasts but still cook the oatmeal in batches.  I don't know why but I do tend to eat only one thing for breakfast for a while then get tired of it and move to something else for a while and then come back to the first thing. IMG_1171  I used my large ice cream scoop and put the scoops of oatmeal on a foil lined cookie sheet and popped then into the freezer.  Each scoop is 1/2 cup and that is exactly how much I eat for breakfast, how handy for me.IMG_1172The frozen oatmeal lumps are put into a ziploc bag and back into the freezer.  Since they were all frozen before bagging the lumps will not stick together and will be ready to be defrosted and heated when I want.  Just a few minutes in the microwave and they are ready to eat.

I never thought I liked oatmeal because I thought it was just too mushy but the steel cut oatmeal is really chewy and quite tasty.  I add some brown sugar to the heated oatmeal then slice a banana on top.  I add a little milk and have a very satisfying breakfast.


Friday, February 8, 2013

Pop-Up Valentines

IMG_1154IMG_1155I like to make my 4 grandchildren homemade Valentine cards each year and this year printed the above pop-up card from this pattern I found on the web.  I printed them on red card stock and proceeded to cut them out.  I just could hardly wait to see how they would look as I LOVE pop-up cards.IMG_1158I used an Exacto Knife with a nice sharp point.  The short lines I cut free hand but used a metal edged ruler to keep the longer cuts straight.  I used the tool below to crease the fold lines.  An empty ball point pen would work too or maybe a toothpick to help score the fold lines.  The card is then gently folded to make the heart pop-up.  Make sure the printed lines are on the back side where they won’t show before you fold the card.  Crease the folds well after it is all eased into the pop-up heart.
IMG_1169  IMG_1170  IMG_1160
I had a “Happy Valentine’s Day” stamp so I stamped on the space under the heart.  It was too much of a problem to figure out the word placement on the computer since they would have had to be printed on the back side of the printed pop-up lines so it was either stamp them or print my wording by hand.IMG_1161I used tape dots from this dispenser by Elmer's to stick the inside pop up part to the outside cover but you could use regular double stick tape or glue.  I think scrap bookers use this kind of thing all the time to secure layers.  I put the dots on one side of the pop-up section then stuck it inside the white printed card.  After that side was adhered I put the tape dots on the second side and pressed it together to make sure they were all stuck well.  DO NOT put tape dots on the actual pop up part, or guess what, it won’t pop-up.IMG_1165When I cut the outside white card cover I cut it about 1/8” larger than the red pop-up insert.  On a couple of the cards I had to do a little trimming to make the edges even but most of the pieces fit together pretty well.IMG_1163
The finished cards are all ready to mail.  I printed the graphics from the internet and tried to pick something special for each of the grandkids.  I also made one to send to my mother too.  Just Google “Pop-Up Card patterns” and you will find lots of designs to try if you want to make some too.

Can’t wait to hear from them when they get the cards as I think they are so cute and the pop-up part was so much fun to make.


Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Farmer Commercial

I love this commercial that aired during the Super Bowl football game.  The video is popular among farmers and non-farmers alike.  This speech was made by the late Paul Harvey, a famous American radio broadcaster in 1978 at a Future Farmers of America convention.

It is nice to have farmers praised instead of vilified as is happening more and more.  The problem, as we see it, is the fact that more and more of the population has no direct knowledge of farming or farmers and in their infinite superior wisdom feel they need to instruct the lowly, ignorant farmer so they don’t strip the land of all it’s nutrients and abuse their animals.  This is tongue in cheek of course because a lot of people do know that farmers are not ignorant and instead are highly educated individuals that strive to responsibly produce food to feed our country and many people around the world. They do so with the the knowledge they have acquired through experience, education, and ongoing schooling to learn the latest techniques.  Most of the farmers around here have bachelors degrees from college and I know quite a few that have advanced masters and Dr. degrees so dumb they are NOT. 

I always am surprised at the impression that farmers abuse their animals and strip the land of it’s nutrients.  Now think about this for a minute.   Why would we as farmers/ranchers risk the things that we either sell for our income or use to grow crops that we sell for our income.  Farmers need income too.  If the land is not taken care of or the animals abused it will directly effect the livelihood of the farmer and they are just not going to do this.

Movies and television promote the idea that the farmer doesn’t know what he is doing and just look at the pickup and tractors they use in these ads or movies.  Most came from the 1950s and no one I know use equipment that old or outdated unless they have fixed it up to drive in parades.

Most farmers I know really do care for their animals, even the ones that they know will end up being meat on someone's table.  Every farmer/rancher I know will get up in the middle of the night to care for his animals, load and haul them to the veterinarian if they are sick and protect them from weather problems.  The care of the animals come first before the farmer can rest. 

Farmers do work long hours – not a 9 to 5 job for sure.  There is lots of physical labor and lots of “brain” labor too.  Farmers have to know what chemicals to use, how much, when to apply etc.  They need to know what the nutrition is in the food stuffs their animals are eating and find out if they are getting what they need to live and grow and what supplements they need to have a well balanced diet.  Farmers have to know how to run and fix their very expensive machinery which include many modern computerized concepts.  I still have a hard time believing we have a tractor that will drive itself with the GPS unit installed in it.  John rides along to watch the gauges and to turn at the end of each pass so it can drive itself to the other end of the field.

Being a farmer and farm family is one of the best lifestyles around despite the long hours and hard work.  We get to raise our children to learn the value of hard work and the rewards of learning as they grow.  We get to help plants and animals grow and we depend on mother nature to help us along.  I love living on a farm as we have neighbors that help when needed and will come if you call but we all respect each others privacy too. 

Fresh air, blue skies and living with mother nature every day….perfect.


Sunday, February 3, 2013

Jacket Fix

IMG_1073I was lucky enough to buy a new jacket that I love, on sale no less…..but it had a big problem that I discovered the first time I wore it.  This is a close up of the fabric the jacket is made of.  Notice the black shiny yarn that is woven into the basic weave of the fabric.  Well, it is pretty but my, oh, my did it prickle my neck.  By the time the evening was over I looked like I had a rash and was about ready to just jump out of my skin.IMG_1080I discovered that there was a black plastic yarn woven into the fabric that was the offender.  After investigating how the black plastic yarn was incorporated into the fabric I discovered that it was just woven on top of the basic fabric and was not an necessary part of the fabric so could be removed and the fabric would not fall apart.  I set about removing the offending yarns only in the neck, inside collar and inside lapel where I was literally scratched raw.  I decided to preserve the sparkly yarn in the rest of the garment if I could.IMG_1074I marked the roll line of the collar then using a tweezers I pulled the yarn from the seam line and back to the marked roll line.  That itchy yard came out of the fabric like a breeze.  Looks kind of funny right now doesn’t it but look at that yarn….itchy, itchy, itchy!IMG_1084IMG_1085I used a large eyed needle to weave the ends back through the collar interfacing.  Some yarns were removed completely if they were on the inside and now it is smooth and comfortable.  I am so pleased I can now wear it and still enjoy the jacket as it was designed and no one will know there is no sparkle next to my neck.IMG_1086Here is a close up photo of the plastic like shiny yarn and all those poky scratchy bits.  It was no wonder it irritated my skin. Below is the collar with the dark black shiny yarn on the top edge of the collar that I kept and the bottom half where it is removed.IMG_1087I love to get something on sale and even better that I could remodel it to make it comfortable.  I am enjoying getting new clothes to fit my new shape as well. 

Until Later,


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