Tuesday, 29 December 2015

Star Hot Pads

Here's the tutorial I used to make my star hot pads. I do have a few comments and suggestions.

First, notice her cutting of the first 2 layers. It's not accurate or straight. It doesn't need to be at that point. I'm all in favour of rough cuts.Trim it properly before you turn to the right side.

 Use a cardboard template and draw around it. I googled pentagrams, used my quilting ruler to add to each side and enlarged it.

She doesn't seem to pad hers. I made a template for the padding and added it after the star is turned right side out. Notice how she draws lines from the midpoint of each side to determine the star folds? That's the template and placement for the inside batting layers. I used one layer of quilt batting and one layer of heat resistant batting. Just wiggle them into place. The batting layers will be stitched in place as you top stitch the star shape in place.

Got scraps? Well there you go.

And speaking of going, Patch has a great sale this week, and I found lots to follow me home. Yum!

Monday, 28 December 2015

Guess Who's Coming To Dinner and a Movie?

So I'm lying on the couch, watching a good old movie when I see something brown waft by the basement window. I'm downstairs looking up at the window. I think little of it as it's windy and probably just some garbage blowing by - but I keep an eye out. And then the deer head pops in the window, nose to the pane - to get a better look.


Three of them at the side yard! A doe and I think her twins. They were smaller and she was a good size. They hung out in the wild shrubs, munching for a while. Long enough for the neighbours to call over in case we were missing it. The snowplow noise sent them on their way. However,  they're regular visitors. A month ago DH had the door to the workshop open and they considered climbing the stairs in before he discouraged them. He also was watching TV. I sense a pattern. I hope it's a milder winter. We lost a lot of shrubbery to them last year. This year we are armed with a bag of deer food if they get started.

Now, some words about the Christmas giving. As usual I made a bunch of things I liked and then gave them out to people and let them have their choice. As usual, this worked well. However I did make some stuffies for the growing collection of little ones the nieces and nephews are providing.

I do find people in general are happy to receive and I enjoy their pleasure. But NOTHING beats the sight of a little one going atomic when handed what seems to be just the right thing! I know from experience (both as a recipient and as a giver) that the receiver always appreciates, but there does come a few special times when the right note is hit and the little one bounces high with delight. I have no idea how I nailed it (with more than one of them!), but was that ever enough to hold me for a least 10 years, or more! It was a pure and perfect Christmas moment.


These are terrible pictures, but here we have the proud new owner of a doll and her brother about to toss teddy just one more time. Got to love an a-frame ceiling! They held onto those stuffies all night.

I made a quilt for my brother. I was not happy with the result until we got the border right. It defines the pattern blocks and gives them some required 'gravitas', I think. The Great P did the quilting on he long arm as time was creeping up on me. Quilt sewn on my Singer 27VS treadle (circa 1893) and my Featherweight when I decided to clean my treadle, forgetting I was halfway through a quilt.

I made some Noodlehead Open Wide bags. Excellent free pattern (and her purchased patterns are even better!) and I finally like the way the zipper on a bag is put in place. 

I made some bowls from both twined fabric scraps and Home depot cotton clothesline rope (not in picture). They were easy to put together and you can really play with top and bottom thread colour. I plan to play with adding scraps and other embellishment to the bowls next. The family finds they make excellent hats as well. Creative family! 

I made some pentagonal folded star hot mats. If I remember (feel free to remind me) I'll post a tutorial. 

Pinterest twigged me to crochet a cord cosy for my phone charger. Not that was just plain fun! Do give it a try!

Wednesday, 9 December 2015


I showed my recent 'must have' notions at sewing guild last night. We all want an adjustable double tracing wheel with chalk marker wheel on the outside. Tiger tape also requested - it's one of those 'good things' that would be nice to have, once you figure out what to do with it. Hand sewers know about tiger tape. And Wonder Clips. Just buy as many as you can afford, in both sizes.

I was more than a bit disorganized in my delivery. It's that time of the year. We get so much up in our heads! One needs to just gather it up and chuck it out occasionally. If only Swiffer would come up with a product. They could give a whole new meaning to Mind Sweeper! (or is it Mine Sweeper? Regardless, both involve things exploding at inopportune times. And then you have a mess.)

Couldn't have been too embarrassing. The Great P held it together throughout. She's been know to go off the deep end and require medical assistance when I make what she sees as an unbelievable gaffe, and what I see as an innocent remark requiring a twisted mind to get where she goes.

Mind Swiffers for all my friends!

At this point for most of us makers we have all the usual notions. We are looking for new toys to play with and help us to new possibilities. And then some of us just want a shiny new toy. Regardless, I enjoy checking them all out.

Clover et al? Send them my way. I can't be bought, but I promise to play hard.

That's wrong, actually. Send me enough fabric and I could be bought.


Waterways are usually considered Federal jurisdiction around here. The province looks after wildlife. The city kicks in with local parks.

So how do you explain this? And what do we do?

Last night's work interrupted by breakfast. No wait! That may have been breakfast!

The new extension to the house. Wife wants it done before the relatives arrive for the holidays.

 Regulatory signage. The papers are in order.

Note the efficiency. Some call it clear cutting. Alert Green Peace! 

This is well off site, so there seems to be some unregulated expansion. I've been reading in the papers lately that this clear cutting may be happening outside of the established boundaries. 

City park. Federal waterway. Provincial animal.

No, actually - I think the beaver is considered of National Interest. However it's nice that the city has stepped in here to take the lead. The appropriate official signage clearly indicates a construction zone. And although dogs must be on a leash, beavers have no such restrictions. I'm waiting for the first smart ass to add to that sign. Hmmm.... Where are those Sharpies?

This area was formerly known as the Shubie Canal. Soon to be the Shubie Lagoon. If you are crossing overhead on the Cole Harbour extension highway, a PFD is recommended.