Changes

It is already the beginning of November… and I’m still a lazy blogger. I have not much motivation to write at the moment – but I’m sure I need some changes. As you can see I changed my header picture (it is self spun yarn now) and the that’s-me-pic… the new one was made last Saturday at a needleword exhibition in Osnabr√ľck, Germany. There was a crazy hat exhibition and for a small fee you could have a shooting with your favourite hat. I really like the picture – that’s me (in a way I can’t explain).

My daughter turned 18 in September… so I have two adult kids now.

Last time I was busy with knitting, earlier this year, while I was off from work I spun a lot. After a few month I unwrapped my sewing machine now to sew a lovely little pouch – it is called “Good-Mood-Pouch” (that is exactly what I needūüôā ) and I bought a sewing kit for it at StoffWerkTaunus – it is a German Patchworkshop and I’m sorry that the site is in German only.

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Another piece I’m just finishing – only the binding to add – is a small autumnal tablerunner for my kitchen table. I used some Kaffe Fasset fabric (yardage and mini charms) and Tim Holtz fabrics for the background:

At the end I decided to shape the tablerunner in a rectangle way

At the end I decided to shape the tablerunner in a rectangle way

img_20161028_102330I was shocked when I was diagnosed with rheumatic arthritis a while ago – I really was afraid I would no longer be able to knit and use my hands in the way I used to. But meanwhile with a good medication I’m really well, I’m back at work since two month after I was 7 month off…¬† At the moment I knit a lot, I entered a yoga course, I started mindful eating and try to do more sports. However – I’m back to crafting!

 

Last week I made this very simple felted acorns Рsmall felted balls glued into  real acorn hats.  I really love how it turned out and I think I will use it not only for decoration but as a small giveaway or gift tags too.

 

I entered a lovely women’s project: The Sisterhood of the travelling Sketchbook – initiated by my friend Kate @talltalesfromchiconia and Anne @annelawson.

I borrow some of Kate’s words to describe the project: We are a varied and global group who will be passing the Travelling Sketchbook between ourselves, around the world (from Australia to America to Europe). Anne has created a small hand-bound volume of slightly different sizes, colours and weights of paper, with an emblematic ‚Äėflying garlic‚Äô bulb on the front cover. Into this, we shall each add our creative contribution, whether it be drawn, sewn, written, collaged or photographed. The Sketchbook will travel from Sister to Sister, growing in wisdom and beauty as it travels. Finally, after many exciting adventures around the world, it will come home to Anne, who saw it born and will now see it in all its glory. One of the participants has created a blog especially for this project, and you really should go over there and take a look; it gives a whole different perspective on the Sketchbook and the contributions. In addition you will find a map there… I can hardly wait and I’m really looking forward to holding it in my hands… At the moment the sketchbook¬† is at the last participant in the US before it will jump over the ocean to Europe. I suppose I’ll get it at the beginning of the new year.

As you see all in all I’m fine – back at work, busy crafting. But often I think I need a change with this blog… sometimes I’m in doubt if I should continue blogging in general. Sometimes I’m so tired to blog in English because it is much more time consuming than blogging in German for me. On the other hand I know most of my followers can’t read my blog in German … and some Germans can’t follow it in English… Perhaps it is a practicable way to blog less often but periodically once a month to give a summary… I don’t know¬† –¬† what do you thing?

 

 

I will be back soon…

At the moment I stay in Bad Camberg for a medical rehab until the end of July. It is a lovely mediaval small town

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I already discovered a local quiltshop, it’s lovely isn’t it?

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I took some stuff for sewing, quilting and spinning with me… but the days are overloaded with sports, gym, swimming, massage, aquajogging, relaxing exercises …

I’m knitting socks at the moment out of my self dyed yarn. I dyed the wool with my balcony harvested dyer’s knotweed.

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I have a wonderful room here … a room with a view.

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Scrap Happy December

Four weeks since my last post… and I really didn’t sew much. But I have a nice little project to share for the monthly Scrap Happy post: I made some cute scrappy Santas!

Santas = Babbo Natale

Santas

The pattern is based on a log cabin quiltblock which I made from SCRAPS! I started with a 2.5″ center piece and added all the strips around.

block for the Santa front

block for the Santa front

The second step is to add the red piece for the Santa’s hat. I did that like I make HST out of squares – put a red square in the same size like the log cabin block on the log cabin block, mark the diagonal line and sew 1/4 ” of both sides from the line, cut on the marked diagonal line. What you’ll get are two blocks like these:

from one log cabin block you will get two Santas

from one log cabin block you will get two Santas

I added the eyes with a small zig-zag-stich using a very small stitch length.

After that you have only to add a red back side and stich the back sides together along the hats. If wanted you can add some embellishments at the edge of the hat and a ribbon at the top.

I found the tutorial on an Italian blog – it is in Italian but there are a lot of step-by-step-pictures… I did it without understanding Italian tooūüôā : http://cucitocreativo.xs4.it/i-miei-lavori/tutorial-babbo-natale-log-cabin/ I added one strip less than the tutorial claims and my Santa is 7.5″ tall.

One of the Santas I sent to¬† Avis with her F2F blocks – as she told me it is sitting at the top of her Christmas tree… mine is still sitting on my old treadler table on top of a bottle¬† waiting for a final usage… maybe as gift, Christmas ornament, gift tag, Christmas eve keyhole protector …

Santa waiting

It seems that I am the first one this month with my ScrapHappy post… so I’ll link here to the other participants supposed to publish a ScrapHappy post later:

Gun at https://rutigt.wordpress.com (in Swedish and English)

Susan at https://desertskyquilts.wordpress.com (in English)

Titti at http://tittisquiltlek.blogspot.se (in Swedish only)

Kate at http://talltalesfromchiconia.wordpress.com/ (in English)

Sue at http://sewingmagpie.blogspot.com.au (in English)

ScrapHappy November

I am a little late to the party… but better late than never! I didn’t make any progess with the scrappy project I introduced to you last month. But I have found such a lovely small scrappy project to show … a small handsewn purse. I made several during the last weeks and I love that I can take it with me on the sofa in the evenings! They are so nice with their special shape … and so clever to open – you only have to press the opposite pointy ends together.

best purses for small things

Wonderful small scrappy purses for small things! If you wonder what the wooden thing on the left is… it is a “nose flute”.

I found these small purses with different names – clamshell purse, thimble pip,¬† precious pods,¬† pipkins, pinch purse … I think they look a bit like a paranut too.

I used a wonderful detailed tutorial I found in the www – the Thimble Pip Tutorial by Susan Flemming. She published it on her Super Mom – No Cape! blog.

The purse can be made in different sizes – I tried three versions between 3 and 5 inches.

Three sizes

You need just a few materials to make it:

01_Template sheets

Template sheets – you can use these high quality ones…

02_Templates

… or you can take some kitchen plastic to recycle some plastic containers. It shouldn’t be too thin.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You can find the explanation how to trace the shapes with a compass in Susan Flemmings detailed tutorial.

Finally all you will need to make the purses are 6 template sheets, 6 small pieces of batting (perfect to use small leftovers up!), 6 pieces of fabric (3 for the outsides, 3 for the insides).

03_what is needed

Here is all you need for one purse. You can take all the same fabrics for the outside or inside pieces – but you also can use different fabrics or only one different for the bottom piece. The first step of preparation after cutting the templates is to glue the templates on the batting – I used spray basting glue for it.

After preparing the three inside lining pieces and the bigger three outside pieces you connect them to three parts – these parts you sew together to build the purse … I have some photos of these steps… but as I said use the wonderful tutorial I linked with.

With some practice it is possible to finish sewing it on one evening. It is also a wonderful small gift. They are so lovely, aren’t they?

Of course you can take nice embroidered fabrics or felt for the outsides. Or you can add a small keyring or embellish the outsides with ribbons or pearls or something… there are countless possibilities.

I’m linking with the other participants:

Gun at https://rutigt.wordpress.com (in Swedish and English)

Susan at https://desertskyquilts.wordpress.com (in English)

Titti at http://tittisquiltlek.blogspot.se (in Swedish only)

Kate at http://talltalesfromchiconia.wordpress.com/ (in English)

Sue at http://sewingmagpie.blogspot.com.au (in English)

DEUTSCHE ZUSAMMENFASSUNG –> (more…)

“October Sky” – Pattern Testing for Esther from Ipatchandquilt

Last week I tested a wonderful foundation paper piecing pattern for Esther from ipatchandquilt. I was impressed – the pattern is so detailed, with different options to make the block centre and different block sizes. In addition the pattern comes with different colouring suggestions and colouring sheets to find your personal block design. I enjoyed the testing so much… and so I loved what came out. Thank you Esther!

Beside some colouring suggestions Esther gave wonderful colouring pages with the pattern to find the best design.

Beside some colouring suggestions Esther gave wonderful colouring pages with the pattern to find the best design.

My colour palette - first design with a green cat in the centre.

My colour palette – first design with a green cat in the centre.

First I thought about a green cat in the middle.

First I thought about a green cat in the middle.

My fabric choice - I decided to add one more block in turquoise/green/orange/white to my F2F blocks.

My fabric choice – I decided to add one more block in turquoise/green/orange/white to my F2F blocks – and I decided to take an orange cat for the centre part.

First I sewed the centre:

It was very easy to prepare the different pieces/strips for the four parts.

It was very easy to prepare the different pieces/strips for the four parts.

I loved that it was possible to chainpiece the parts around the centre block.

I loved that it was possible to chainpiece the parts around the centre block.

joining the different parts

Joining the different parts.

all the peeled off paper pieces...

all the peeled off paper pieces…

Finished block - back side.

Finished block – back side.

And here it is… my version of “Oktober Sky”:

Finished block... I love the result.

Finished block… I love the result.

I’m curious to see what the other testers came up with!

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Scary Halloween Cookies

Today morning I baked Halloween cookies for the children from our neighborhood – I made “Scary Fingers” for their trick or treat demand.

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“Scary Fingers” are¬† biscuits out of shortcrust pastry. The details like the shape, the “blood” and fingernails out of almonds make it the perfect biscuits for Halloween.

Here I have the recipe for you – SCARY FINGERS

for appr. 25 fingers you need:

  • 125 g butter
  • 125 g sugar
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 250 g flour
  • a pinch salt
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • whole peeled almonds
  • icing sugar and red food colouring

Mix butter, sugar and salt. Add the egg yolks, lemon zest and last the flour and knead all into a dough. Let the dough stand in the fridge for 30 minutes.

Make a roll and cut pieces (appr. plum-sized). shape every piece into a finger like roll – if you roll it between your middle- and index fingers you get the perfect shape.

shaped dough pieces

shaped dough pieces

Use a teaspoon to add always three notches at the knuckles.

Form the nail bed with the spoon handle. You can now use a bit of red food colouring to colour the nail bed.  Finally add a whole almond as the fingernail.

Now lay the

fingers on baking paper on a baking tray and bake for 20-25 minutes at 180¬įC – the colour should be golden and the almonds are tan or light brown when it is ready.

Decorate the fingers to make them really scary… use red sugar icing to add a bit blood¬†to the nailbeds and to the fingerbases. It gives a really good effect if you brake a piece from the finger base to make it look demolished before you dip it in the red icing.

Bon appétit!

 

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ScrapHappy October

It is the 15th of the month and I decided to join ScrapHappy hosted by Kate and Gun. ScrapHappy is open every month to any one using up scraps… and that is what I want to do! For this month I’d like to present you my scrappy WIPs.

When I started sewing one and a half year ago I would never have guessed how many scraps you collect over the time. At the beginning I had a very small scrap box and used my scraps to sew small scrappy things… not knowing that there is a point you can’t¬† use up all the scraps to sew small cute stuff:

That’s why in June I decided¬† to join crazymomquilts’s scrap vortex sew along. And so I sorted my scraps and scraps from two moda scrapbags which I got as a present and started to connect them to pairs…

scrapvortex_pairs

… connected the pairs to pairs of pairs…

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… to make blocks out of it…

scrapvortex_block

… but with the start of F2F block swap there were new scraps… the scraps in the picture above are all from Esther’s and my F2F blocks. And some of the scraps were too small to put it into the stash but too big for the scrapvortex I thought…

A while ago I bought the Mini Periwinkle Template from MSQC (there is also a video tutorial at youtube) and so I decided to take big enough scraps for a wacky web quilt… I sorted the scraps again and started to sew the first blocks…

miniwackyweb

And as if that was not enough I saw the granny square blocks at wombatquilts … and it was love at the first sight! I knew I had to make these… and so I decided to make them not big but very small… a perfect scrap project. And so I sorted the scraps again… all big enough for a scrappy wacky web quilt¬† … all too small for that but at least 1.5″ squareables for the scrappy mini granny squares …. all the rest for the scrap vortex. As you can see I have now three scrap WIPs.

At the moment the granny square blocks are my favourites … there is a wonderful tutorial for these blocks at blueelephantstitches if you are interested. I just changed the size to 1.5″ squares – the finished blocks are 4.5″ then.

First I cut lots of scraps into 1.5″ squares and looked of which scraps I have only 1 piece (for the centre square), 4 pieces (for the inner ring) or 8 pieces (for the outer ring). The next step was combining the colours…

For the background I take white fabrics – solid white as well as printed, I have lots of different white scraps. The best way to sew the blocks is sewing several at once using the chainpiecing method.

03_blocklayout

First I lay out the blocks I want to sew.

 

I add the backround fabrics I need to join the rows (columns)

I added the backround fabrics for the rows/columns I need to join.

 

chainpiecing

chainpiecing all of the blocks

All pieces are sewn together.

All pieces are sewn together.

The last step is squaring the block up to 4.5".

The last step is squaring the block up to 4.5″.

And here are the blocks I finished so far:

There are small sqares for another 155 blocks to go… I will show you my progress next month (perhaps I get another six finished?).

 

Linking with

Gun at https://rutigt.wordpress.com (in Swedish and English)

Sue at http://sewingmagpie.blogspot.com (In English)

Titti at http://tittisquiltlek.blogspot.se (in Swedish only)

Kate at https://talltalesfromchiconia.wordpress.com/

My last F2F blockswap blocks arrived!!!

screen-shot-2015-03-02-at-7-13-18-amI was Mrs. July in the F2F blockswap I’m participating what means that I was the lucky one 33 12-inch-blocks were made for by the other participants. It was so exciting when all the 12″ blocks in my chosen colours (green/orange/turquoise with whit background) arrived one after another. When the month was over I was still waiting for some blocks from Australia. After I gave up all hope and really thought they were lost… after a 64 day voyage from Australia I yesterday received my last F2F blocks!

And so I am able now to show you all blocks together … including my own three blocks and some extra I received. I decided to make one big quilt from all the blocks – for that I have to make three more blocks. The quilt will have the right size to cover my bed then and will measure appr. 72 x 84″ (180 x 210 cm). I like the idea to know from every single block where it comes from and who it made expecially for meūüôā Thank you all for the wonderfull blocks!!!! Because I have no idea concerning the final layout the blocks where shown randomly… every time the site load again you see the blocks in another order… perhaps that is a help for me to decide how I could finally arrange them?

 

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Snoopy Cushion Cover – pictural tutorial

Today evenening it occurred to me that I had to sew a fast Snoopy cushion cover… I didn’t finish it yet but I managed to sew the front part in less than three hours. There was enough time for some pics I’ll share here:

I made it in a size of 18″ – Snoopy is appr. 6″ – if you search the web for “Snoopy” you’ll find enough picures. You only have to print a Snoopy in the desired size, the doghouse roof and landscape can be drawn freehand.

sketched the basic lines on the sticky side of a thin interfacing

sketched the basic lines on the sticky side of a thin interfacing

 

fabric for the middle plank, right side up

fabric for the middle plank, right side up – it must cover the middle field

 

on top of the first fabric is placed the fabrid vor the upper plank - right side on right side

on top of the first fabric is placed the fabrid vor the upper plank – right side on right side… fixed with a needle

 

the interfacing - the first seam is the line between the middle plank and the plank above.

Like foundation piecing you sew on the interfacing – the first seam is the line between the middle plank and the plank above.

the seems have to be trimmed to 1/4"

the seems have to be trimmed to 1/4″

the interfacing is folded back so it can stay undamaged

The interfacing is folded back so it can stay undamaged. The quarter inch line covers the seam.

trimmed seam allowance

trimmed seam allowance

 

After the seam is trimmed you can fold up the fabric for the upper plank and add the fabric for the lower plank in the same way (mark your seam line as showed in the picture with finger pressing).

After the seam is trimmed you can fold up the fabric for the upper plank and add the fabric for the lower plank in the same way (mark your seam line as showed in the picture with finger pressing).

The fabric for the lower plank is added.

The fabric for the lower plank is added.

Now the shape of the roof must be trimmed.

Now the shape of the roof must be trimmed.

 

Fold the interfacing back on a thin ruler wich is placed exactly on the line.

Fold the interfacing back on a thin ruler wich is placed exactly on the line.

I used my "add a quarter ruler" to trimm my 1/4" seamallowance.

I used my “add a quarter ruler” to trimm my 1/4″ seamallowance.

First step is done... that is the roof. Next is to add the landscape beside the roof.

First step is done… that is the roof. Next is to add the landscape beside the roof.

I prepared the landscape out of green and blue fabric (for meadow and sky). The fabrics were connected with curved line piecing.

I prepared the landscape out of green and blue fabric (for meadow and sky). The fabrics were connected with curved line piecing.

I cut my landscape strip in two pieces - for both sides of the doghouse roof. Your landscape strip has to be as wide as the roofs hight is.

I cut my landscape strip in two pieces – for both sides of the doghouse roof. Your landscape strip has to be as wide as the roofs hight is.

Roof and Landscape are joined - they have to be trimmed now: use the lower and upper roof line as guide.

Roof and Landscape are joined – they have to be trimmed now: use the lower and upper roof line as guide.

Add now a large sky-piece.

Add now a large sky-piece.

The ear is sewn from black fabric - two pieces right side on ride side sewn together. I left an opening on one of the long sides and turned right side out. I closed the opening with an small edgestitch around the ear-piece. The ear is only fixed on the upper part and hangs down losely over the roof.

The ear is sewn from black fabric – two pieces right side on ride side sewn together. I left an opening on one of the long sides and turned right side out. I closed the opening with an small edgestitch around the ear-piece. The ear is only fixed on the upper part and hangs down losely over the roof.

The nose... a black oval wich is zigzagged with black yarn - the white gloss strip is zigzagged too. Lower part of the nose and upper part of the ear will be later covered with the head.

The nose… a black oval wich is zigzagged with black yarn – the white gloss strip is zigzagged too.
Lower part of the nose and upper part of the ear will be later covered with the head.

The nose... a black oval wich is zigzagged with black yarn - the white gloss strip is zigzagged too. Lower part of the nose and upper part of the ear will be later covered with the head.

The body silhouette is marked on the sticky side of the thin interfacing. It is ironed on a piece of white fabric and cut out afterwards.

After the silhouette shape had been cutting out it is machine appliqued with a black zigzag stitch.

After the silhouette shape had been cutting out it is machine appliqued with a black zigzag stitch.

Add black zigzag lines for the eye, the arm, a line between body and head and fingers/toes.

Add black zigzag lines for the eye, the arm, a line between body and head and fingers/toes.

Zigzag the outline of the doghouse roof and the lines between the planks. Done!!!!

Zigzag the outline of the doghouse roof and the lines between the planks. Done!!!!

I plan to add a blue back side and a zipper at the bottom … hope to get it done tomorrow.

Linked with Crazy Mom Quilts finishitupfriday linky party and with the TGIFF-party this week over at whatahootquilts .