Thursday, 19 January 2017

It's My Blogaversity!!!

Oh yes, a whole year since Jen from Quilter in the Closet and her 100 Day Challenge gave me the push I needed to start my blogging career (sounds very high powered don't you think?)

How things have changed, I took a look at my first post recently, I remember I felt very shy and nervous and you can tell in the writing.  Do you think I've changed much?  Do you know I didn't even add one pic?

Well just to start today off right ................


An update on my latest quilt, the Meadow Mystery Quilt.  Of course I don't know the real layout of the quilt but this seems to be the popular choice on the Meadow Mist Facebook page.   But, before anyone mentions it it has already been pointed out I have made two mistakes the bottom of the quilt.  There is a four patch block turned the wrong way at the bottom left and a white quarter square triangle instead of a blue/grey one on the bottom right.  Now I know why I was a white one short and had to remake it.  Don't know what happened to the blue one though, that might have give me a clue.   This is the first time I done a quilt along, let alone a mystery quilt and it has been wonderful. If you haven't done one before think about doing one in the future, I have so enjoyed it, especially being part of the FB group and seeing everyone else's fabrics and blocks.  AND I believe there will be another one starting this summer, just tell me when!

I digress (unusual for me I know), I have to tell you it has been a wonderful year in many ways.  I have made so many lovely friends, there was the New Quilt Bloggers Blog Hop, the Cloud9 New Block Blog Hop, I never envisaged taking part in any of it and I have had a blast.

So, what have I been doing since I last posted?  Well it hasn't been the best start to the year,  a very close relative became suddenly and life threateningly ill, but we got our miracle and the crisis has passed, for now anyway.  However with three parents aged 85 to 89 and all having a degree of health issues it's a case of when not if it will happen again.  So if I didn't reply to your post or make a return visit my apologies.

I have however been doing a little FMQ practise, yes I am still rubbish but I'm going to practise every week until it becomes acceptable rubbish.  Already I feel that my motions are becoming smoother and more controlled, well they should the number of Craftsy classes I have watched.


Ok then, here is the first attempt.  As you can see I practised over a couple of times on the same piece, just to get the flow of the movements really.


Then I moved on to this piece, the white stitching is a continuation of the first try, my stitching was improving although I was going over the lines a lot.  The grey stitching is when I practised a couple of days later.  On the left I was using the open toe darning foot, the circles were getting more circular, but then I changed to the bigger see through foot on the right.  I found this more difficult, the circles are bigger and the shape is not as good.  Ignore the uniformity of the stitch size if you can see it, I am using a Bernina Stitch Regulator so I take no credit for that.  The hardest thing I am finding, apart from keeping my movements at a steady pace, is planning my route.  If I was just wanting to go in a straight line two deep then I could say I've pretty much cracked it, but doing it in a cluster is hard.  I'm considering a supreme slider, but they are eye wateringly expensive,  and you know what happened when my friend Wendy leant me hers!  Didn't see it?  You can read about it here (blush blush).

Moving on I have made my bee blocks for this month,


These heart blocks are for Cyndi in Stash Bee Hive 2 which I posted here.  They are only 8 inches finished so I made two.  If you don't follow Stash Bee I suggest you pop over and have a look, you will find some great inspiration.  On the first of the month the Queen Bee in each hive posts her tutorial and states her wishes, then the rest of the month the worker bees post pics of the blocks they are sending.


This is the second one for Sharon @ Yellow Cat Quilts,  who is part of my second bee group, Bee Inspired, formed by a group of us from the New Quilt Bloggers.   Yes it's a paper pieced design, now I remember why I don't normally do paper piecing, although something tells me I will be getting a lot more practise this year.

About my new sewing room, I've been having a bit of trouble (nothing new there) with my design wall.  I read lots of suggestions and took lots of advice and decided to make it with foam insulation board, three pieces hung together using Command strips not huge, but big enough and much bigger than I have now (I don't have now, unless you count the floor or the bed).

This is how I made it,


I covered the insulation sheets using cotton wadding.


I used 505 spray to temporarily fix the wadding to the foam sheets.


Then I trimmed it to size (no I'm not left handed but I couldn't take a pic with my left hand so I had to stage it).


Cutting out the corners so it would fit nice and neat.


I taped the edges down with Duck Tape, looks a lovely neat job doesn't it?


I propped them up against the cupboard doors ready for when my husband could help me to hang them straight.

I got up the next morning...........


To this???????


And now look at them!!!

Do you know what I did wrong?  The Duck Tape sticks to EVERYTHING, except the foam boards and the wadding.  I haven't got a hot glue gun thing, and my husband really doesn't want me to get one (he doesn't trust me with one) so how do I stick the wadding on?

I would so like to have a design wall and have a posh sewing room, any advice?  

I am so dreading sticking them onto the wall.

So thats everything I've been up to, I'm caught up with some stuff and behind with others, story of my life really, I think it's called normality.

I was supposed to be queen bee in Stash Bee in February but the lovely  Cheryl swapped with me as it's a little stressful for me to be sorting out the tutorial just now, so I will be queen in May, which is my birthday month so it will be like receiving lots of presents through the post.

Thank you everyone for your wonderful support this last year, I so appreciate it, and I'm so looking forward to the next twelve months.

Until next time
Smiles from
Kate

Linking up to:
Myra @ Finished or not Friday also hosting TGIFF this week.


35 comments:

  1. Could you not just staple the wadding onto the back of the boards? Not even anything heavy duty, just pop the stapler open so you can flatten it against the surface and regular office staples should work. You could also use flat push pins, I'd think. My design wall is just a huge piece of flannel tacked onto the wall.

    Congratulations on the blogaversary! It's been wonderful to see your voice develop over the year with such confidence and humour!

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  2. Congrats on one year Kate and here's to many more! Your mystery quilt is beautiful! Good look hanging the design wall!

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  3. I would definitely staple the wadding to the styrofoam! I think I maybe also see an error in the fourth block in the first column -- it looks like one of the four patches is rotated 90 degrees!

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  4. Congrats on your first year of blogging! How big do you need your design wall to be? I made a smallish one (36 x 48) and wrote the process on my blog, if you want some other ideas. Wendy at piecefulthoughts@gmail.com

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  5. Happy blogiversary!! Oh, I remember my first posts all too well! I even had my daughter read them before I posted! I'm not sure staples will hold in the foam, but it's worth a try. Would a different spray adhesive work better? My design wall is a large piece of a table pad, vinyl on the front with flannel on the back. I folded over the top and inserted a long stick that hangs on a simple hook. I'll be curious to see how you handle your wall!!

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  6. I was thinking spray adhesive for your design boards???? Congrats on celebrating the anniversary!

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  7. Can't advise I'm afraid on the design wall but I'm just envious . Glad to hear your motions are going well .... all joking apart congratulations on your one year blogversary, I can't believe I'm blogging three or four years now and still learning and feeling my way . Hoping for the best with the elderly parents , knowing what that's like at the minute x

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  8. Happy blogiversary! Yes, you've come so far but think of where you will go this year! Your blog is great and I love reading each post because in your writing, your lovely personality always comes through.

    Your quilting is not rubbish at all--you should see mine! But you have the idea for improving it, just practice. And each practice session gets better so that should make you happy.

    As for the design wall, mine did the exact same thing. I kept retaping with duct tape (over here, ours is gray) and it would stick for a while then pop off. I finally tore it all off and used packing tape (clear tape) instead. Like the kind you use to pack boxes for mailing. Worked like a charm. I hung my design wall panels as you know using three Command hooks across the top. My panels are 4 feet wide and 8 feet tall so I thought three rather than two although two would probably have done just fine based on weight. Anyway, I love it and you will too. Lovely bee blocks! I've got to get mine mailed for Sharon.

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  9. Congrats Kate-It has been quite a year! Bless you, Susan

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  10. You started this first year with a bang. Congrats on the wonderful progress you've made. I appreciate your input in my blogging life and especially for your cheerful attitude even in the face of a disaster. Sounds like the stapler could be your friend. Good luck and blessings on your second year as a quilt blogger.

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  11. Happy first blogaversary! Love your bee blocks. I still need to get mine done and mailed. Life is good. Take one day at a time and don't fret the small stuff such as duck tape not sticking. I really enjoy your blog. Karen

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  12. I just use the Fons and Porter Design wall. I hung it with clear 3M hooks, it cost less than $20,and I have been using it for years. Works great. Here is a link for the product on amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Fons-Porter-60-Inch-by-72-Inch-Design-Wall/dp/B0028U2II2/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1484884367&sr=8-1&keywords=quilt+design+wall

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  13. Kate,
    I have so enjoyed getting to know you this year. Yes, your posts were more reserved in the beginning but now your personality just bubbles through. I love it. You have such a sweet sense of humor.
    For the wall, I used clear, wide packing tape. It has held up nicely. (Same as Jennifer mentioned above) Give that a try. My design wall is pitifully small. I keep thinking of how I can rearrange the sewing room to allow for more wall space. It is really tough to lay a quilt out on the floor. the perspective is just wrong.
    Love the mystery quilt. I have not done one yet - seems like it would be fun.

    Here's to another fun year!!

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  14. Happy blogaversary Kate! Any cake? I love your Meadow Mist QAL. It's looking really good! My parents are a constant worry too but glad everything has turned out okay. When you replied last time I was worried that your little dog had taken a turn for the worse. He is okay now?

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  15. What a year! You have come a long way baby!! I am so glad we met, Kate! My design wall is simply a twin size piece of batting tacked to the wall! Not fancy at all, but it works like a charm and I can move it or take it down any time I need to. Haven't needed to!

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  16. Happy blogaversary! What lovely colors you chose for your quilt, too! For the design wall, just pin the batting to the sides of the foam, then hang. The pins won't come out and the batting won't come off. Good luck!

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  17. Happy blogaversary, your mystery quilt is beautiful, well done and your pebbling FMQ is coming on a treat! Would the longer staples be any good maybe for your foam?

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  18. your pebbles look beautiful! I'm ashamed of my non-existent fmq skills, but this is a good reminder that practice makes perfect!

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  19. i made my design wall(!) using a huge plasticy canvas picture that was on sale and covered it in equally cheap ikea fleece, using staples. i can hang it or prop it up wherever i want. its not enormous but it does the job.

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  20. Congratulations on the anniversary. I have enjoyed your posts, the inspiration, the pictures and the teasing (I am expecting post)too. Love the red , white and blue, although I do not want to be reminded that I am an American. Not today.
    My design wall is attached to the Styrofoam with a few large binder clips on the top.
    Hugs,
    Preeti.

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  21. Staple gun. Perhaps you can borrow one?

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  22. I guess duct tape doesn't fix everything...sorry to hear it failed you...try that packing tape , or maybe research some other adhesive. There's all kinds out there.

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  23. I guess duct tape doesn't fix everything...sorry to hear it failed you...try that packing tape , or maybe research some other adhesive. There's all kinds out there.

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  24. Love your mystery quilt! Not something I've ever joined in with...yet! I guess it's all about practise where fmq is concerned! I'm still a straight line quilter!

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  25. Your mystery quilt is looking lovely! And you are correct that another one will be starting this summer, the plan is to kick off on July 6th :)

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  26. Congrats on your anniversary. Your mystery blocks look great. Looking forward to getting February's instructions so we can get the layout. Good luck with your design wall.

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  27. I find it very inspiring that you are celebrating your first blogaversary. I started a blog but promptly forgot how to do all the picture uploading, etc., and have not made a second effort. I am going to make my next effort and make it happen! Thanks for being so open and honest. Good for you!

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  28. So glad that the health issues resolved themselves for now. Love your Meadow Mist Mystery. I'm still working on last month's blocks. The bee blocks are all fun. Happy stitching this week.

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  29. Happy Blogaversary! I can't believe it has already been an entire year, yet I feel I've 'known' you so much longer! It is very pleasing to read that your family member has rallied and, for now, all is well. Your Meadows Mystery quilt is, simply put, gorgeous! Wish I had followed along now! Enjoy your day, Kate, and maybe try a staple gun on that design wall? XOXO

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  30. Congratulations on the year - and what a year you have had. It's been lovely getting to know since the NQB and I hope to be here with you celebrating your 2nd Blogiversary!

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  31. Congrats on one year! Wow, I would never have guessed that as you are so polished! Oh NO on the design wall. I'm sure with 30 comments you've had lots of advice...here's what I did with mine: my husband glued the styrofoam to the wall, and then I, with his help to keep it straight and square, pinned, yes pinned the gridded flannel in place (a bit expensive but I do not regret those lines ever) which I bought online at Hancock's of Paducah. I used short straight pins which disappeared into the fabric and styrofoam. Then, about 11 years later, when we moved, which I thought would never happen, sniff, I was able to salvage the fabric. Glad to hear the crisis is over. btw your FMQ is coming along FABulously! ;-)

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  32. Happy Blogversary Kate! I believe people use a staple gun to attach the batting to the foam core.

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  33. Happy Blogaversary.
    I constructed my design wall like yours and also had trouble with the back. I went back to the insulation store and asked them for tape or glue that would work. It's much better but has come loose on the bottom as I moved them around over the past two years.

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  34. Congratulations on your blogaversary. I've had the same problem with making a design wall - in the end I just used tiny flat-headed pins on the back.

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Thank you so much for taking the time to read and leave a comment, it helps me grow as a quilter and as a blogger. It also makes me very happy :)
I try to respond to all comments by email, but if I don't reply within a few days it may be because you are a no reply blogger.
With smiles
Kate