Thursday, October 24, 2013

"Phone book" blocks

Here's a subtitle for you . . . Keep on Making the Phone Books! (Wink)

Where would I be, without those great pages from the phone books? Nice and thin, and they tear so nicely . . .

OK, I will tell you what I'm talking about. Pull up your chair, grab a cuppa and a snack, and be forewarned -- it's a picture-heavy post and tutorial!

You see . . . (pulls chair closer, looks furtively over shoulder, then whispers) ....I have a guilty secret. Whenever they drop off phone books at our driveway, I scamper out, tuck them under my arm, and tiptoe back into the house. I hide them in my quilting stash.

My family thinks they don't print them any more -- they haven't see one in years. (Grin)

It gives me a never-ending supply of foundation papers for these blocks!

Ain't they bee-yewtifull?!!

Well, many of you may already know how to make these, but some of you might not -- it is for those "phone book block" rookies that this tutorial is created!

I always like to give credit where credit is due, and many years ago I got this from a Bonnie Hunter post. I don't do things exactly as she did, but that's where the concept came to me.

Let's get started!

The first thing you want to do is grab some pages ripped from an old (or new, if you are desperate) phone book, and cut them to size. You can see from this photo that I cut mine at 5.5 inches square. That way (if I am keeping a quarter inch seam everywhere) I end up with five inch blocks. I like 'em that way, but you can make your squares any size you choose!

Now, grab some strips of fabric from your scrap bin, and lay one of them down on the paper, right side up, like this:

Now grab one more. No fair peeking and picking and choosing.....this is supposed to be a happy-scrappy project, and it will look fabulous when we complete the block.

Yes, it will. Trust me.

Just close your eyes, stick your hand into the scraps, and bring one up!

Place your new strip on top of the other so that the right sides are together and the edges line up, like this:

Now stitch (with a really short stitch length) a quarter inch from the raw edges . . . will seem kinda crinkly and funny going through fabric AND paper, but you'll get used to it. Don't be concerned if the paper wants to poke up or anything -- as long as it doesn't tear, you're good!

Now you can finger press and this is what you have:

Yay! Now on to the next step.  Line up yet another strip (right sides together, OK?) along the edge of the right-hand piece . . .
Here -- check it out in this photo and it will make more sense:

Kapeesh? Now you will sew along those edges, a quarter inch like before!

Get the picture? So, you keep on going across the paper until you have completely covered it, and it looks something like this:

Kinda messy, but oh, the potential!

Flip that bad boy over, like this:

And then use your ruler and rotary cutter to trim it up:

Now you have this!

The paper on the back is making it curl up a little, which is why the top corners look a little bit wonky. (Grin)

UPDATE!!!!  Phyllis was a sweetie and reminded me that I had left out a step -- since you use a short stitch on these, this is the point at which the paper tears off so easily!! That is why I LOVE my phone book pages!
Tear them off and then....
Now you can start laying them out and playing with them...

I decided that a table runner of these blocks was the order of the day. But I kinda thought that it was a little too busy, with no spot for your eye to rest on . . .

Back to the stash!

Ahhh, found a piece of Maya, by Anthology....look at this now!

Me likee!

I took some of my blocks and alternated the directions of the strips, and put four of them together with quarter inch seams:

(This is a great way to play with your scraps from your favorite projects!)
I cut a rectangle from the orange, about 10.5 long and 5.5 wide, and assembled the runner:

Voila! She is finished!
Here are some eye-candy pictures for you:

I need a handkerchief! I'm drooling over these fabrics!

My favorite way to use these blocks is to put them "on point" and use some setting can get some fun projects that way, from totes to lap quilts!

I hope this tutorial will inspire some phone book tearing and slicing and some fabric play-time!


Monday, October 21, 2013

S. O. P.

I'm sure that you've all heard of the term, shameless self-promotion, right?   S.S.P.

I just invented a new one -- S. O. P.

Shameless Offspring Promotion!  (Grin)

My darling daughter has opened her Etsy shop, "CraftOtters", and I hope you will go and take a look!

She only has a few items in her inventory so far, but I think they're cool -- Take a peek!

Wallets, credit card holders . . . what's in a name? They could be used either way!
She takes custom orders, too, so if you have a certain color you love, she can probably accommodate you. You can convo her to see samples of the fabrics she has on hand.

Her wallets are carefully constructed, reasonably priced and very sturdy -- they make great gifts, too.

What I think is uber-clever is that she used the selvage on the sections in the wallets (or credit card holders) to eliminate bulk! They are thin enough to work in almost any pocket!

She's just opened the CraftOtters shop, and I think she has plans for even more goodies . . . I hope you will stop by her shop and maybe "like" it, while you are there!


Thursday, October 17, 2013

Announcing our winners!

 Our Go To Jail linky party was so much fun!

So many of you showed us proof that you are "Quilty Guilty"!!!

Quilts on beds, on walls, on tables, wow! We all proved that we are quilters!

We totaled up all of the comments on both posts and the entries and then asked Mr. Random Number Generator to help us out . . .

First, we had an adorable sign to go in a lucky winner's sewing area:

Along with a $15 e-certificate to spend at FabricsNQuilts!  (Blowing kisses) Thanks, Shannon!

Mr. Random chose number 14, Sharon!
Congratulations and much merriment to Sharon! Have fun shopping!

Next, Padsworth was giving away a free year's worth of his virtual design wall site, OleFrogEyes!

And our winner here was number 81!

Congratulations to LynCC! Yay! We hope you enjoy using OleFrogEyes to show off your progress on your quilts!

And our third prize was a lovely package of Aurifil thread for a lucky winner!

Mr. Random chose number 27!

Yay! Congrats to Barbara! Have fun playing with that Aurifil goodness! 

Thank you to everyone who played along! It was a lot of fun, and we are making plans to party this way every year!

And a special thank you to our awesome sponsors! All of this merriment and mayhem would not be quite as nice, without them! Please visit FabricsNQuilts and Aurifil thread and let them know you appreciate them!


Friday, October 11, 2013

Did I scare you?

I'm beginning to think that I scared some of you, by putting "Go to Jail" in my title for the linky party and giveaway!  We haven't had many entries yet!

Maybe we should call it "Prove you're a Quilter!" like our dear friend Sharon said!

Remember, you don't have to show anything that would embarrass or identify you -- after all, you know that I'm a privacy nut, right? I blog using my pen-name: Snoodles!

So, if you have hesitated to join our party because you don't want to show too much of your home, or of yourself, come on and party with us! You can crop your photos so that you are more comfortable showing them to us! 

I sure hope that you will join our linky party here, and "prove you are a quilter!"  (Grin)


Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Go to Jail -- Sponsored Giveaway!

 Remember this?

The go-to-jail card in the ever popular Monopoly game! (Thank you, Parker, for many hours of fun playing this game!)

Today we begin our linky party and sponsored giveaway: we're calling it the "Go to Jail" party, because we want to know the answer to a very important question . . . 

You say you are a quilter, right?
(That adorable graphic is a design by Amy Bradley, and you can access and enjoy her awesome stuff by clicking here. They're a hoot!)

Is there enough evidence to convict you? (Grin)

Well, let's see about that!

Here's an example:

 In the guest room....
In the spare room....
                                                             In my kitchen....

Write a blog post, or make a collage on Flickr, and show us the "evidence" that will convict you of being a quilter!

Then use the URL of your post or collage and join our linky party!

This is going to be fun! And just to make it more fun, we have a sponsored giveaway -- at the end of the linky party, we will hold a random drawing and award some prizes! Woot!

Check this out:

The lovely Shannon at FabricsNQuilts is offering not one, but TWO prizes for one lucky winner!

This adorable sign for your quilting area, valued at $16 US:

and a $15 e-gift certificate (with free shipping included), to spend in the FabricsNQuilts store! This is a small sample of what you will find in the online store, and the brick-and-mortar store in Tennessee, for all of you lucky enough to visit with Shannon!

That's not all . . .
Padsworth is offering another winner a full year's subscription to OleFrogEyes, the virtual design wall for quilters

And our bestest thread friend, Aurifil, is offering another winner a lovely package of thread:

Now, here are the rules (there are not too many):

1. Write a blog post or create a Flickr collage (instructions can be found at Flickr, or on youtube). Then join our linky party here at the Lilypad, and leave a comment to let us know you are partying with us!
2. Towards the end of the week, make sure that you have visited and left some comment love for all of your fellow party-goers. Leave a comment to tell us that you did.
3. Stop in at FabricsNQuilts and leave a comment telling what is calling your name!
4. Travel through cyberspace and check out the gallery at OleFrogEyes, and tell us whose quilt you just love! (Click on a letter, like "J" or "S" and then check out the quilters' projects....tsk, tsk, some of them haven't posted yet, but many of them have! Enjoy! (And leave a comment here)
5. You don't have to be a follower to win, but we'd love to have you, and we'll allow another entry if you follow and leave a comment to let us know!

We do ask that you include a backlink or at least tell your visitors where to come back to, to continue partying!

The linky party will be open for a full week, to allow everyone to post and enjoy. Then we will ask Mr. Random to choose our winners!

Padsworth, DragonDrop and I are so excited! (Gavel pounding) 
Are you a quilter?  Show us the evidence!
Let's party!


Sunday, October 6, 2013

Decisions, decisions . . .

I'm getting ready to put the borders on my Swoon quilt for my darling daughter . . .

. . . and that brings me to a weighty (no pun intended) decision: what batting to use?

You see, this will be a humongous wall-hanging in a loft apartment with a nice, tall ceiling. I don't know if I should stick to a cotton batting like I'm accustomed to, or if I should go with something that won't be so heavy?

After all, this is going to hang on three hooks that will support a hanging rod in the hanging sleeve; the wall is a standard drywall number. I'll be trying to hit the studs in the wall, but I'm still worried.

Anyone out there have experience with hanging large quilts? This one will be queen size. 

I've been looking around, and there's a dizzying array of options.
There's a batting called "Air-lite"....

There's my old faithful, "warm-n-natural"....

And there's even some with bamboo in them!