Wednesday, April 30, 2014

I'm such a "joiner"

I'm joining in today with Barbara at Catpatches, in a shameless attempt to win the pin that she is offering for the April NEWFO linky party prize . . .

This is such a fun party! It enables me to start a new project even though there are unfinished ones that glare at me from the cabinet if I'm brave enough to look over there. "Finish me!" they demand. "We want to be complete and loved and admired!" (Grin)
This is the pin for this month:

Ain't it a beaut?
You should join the fun, too!

Here is my entry; it's my Mug Shots topper that I started and finished. 

Be sure to hop over to see the party at Catpatches!


Friday, April 25, 2014

It's just as important as what is up front!

Did you know that if you search with that famous search engine that we won't call by name, the one that has "images" for you to choose from, that you can find lots of "backgrounds"?

Loads of different colors.

Lots of shapes.

Some even seem to have three-dimensional textures.

It seems that some people find backgrounds really important. 

Me, too!

Let me show you what I mean . . . remember my "Mug Shots" table topper?

It has kind of a bland background, right? Nothing special. It lets the Kona Bay fabrics shine, that's true.

But what if I kinda kicked it up a notch, to quote a famous chef . . . if for my third project using these fabrics, I chose a totally different background effect?

Here are some of my experiments:

 I kinda like that clam shell or fish scale fabric; the golden yellow really sets off the items to be appliqued on.

Pale green shot with gold. Not bad. But not as much "wow" as I'm looking for. 

The red is promising. I like the green mug and cup against it, but the photo just above is in the shade, and it doesn't do as well as in the sunshine. Let's keep trying.

Blue?  How about green?

Naaah. Doesn't sing to me yet. 

Ah. There's our white on white. Nice try, but you're outa here.

How about this lavender?

I think we have a winner!

What do you think? Which one do you like best?


Monday, April 21, 2014

Happy Birthday!

Hopping by today to wish my sister an especially happy day today! It's her birthday!

(Confidentially, I share her day . . . I was gifted to her on her third birthday, and she has been gracious in saying I was her bestest present ever.)
She sent me a gift certificate to an online store and I've been happily clicking and drooling, clicking and drooling . . . I guess I'd better get back to work!

I'll show you my haul when it arrives, OK?  Right now, I need to grab the fire extinguisher . . .

Meanwhile, if you have a moment, pop over to her blog and leave her some birthday wishes!  (She's like me -- she's terminally busy, so she doesn't post as much as she used to!)


Monday, April 14, 2014

Happy Easter!

I know, I know, right?

I'm a week early with my good wishes!

I wanted to make certain that I told all of you wonderful blogland friends that I wish you a peaceful, blessed Easter holiday. For those of you that don't celebrate, I hope you have a lovely week of springtime weather and blossoms . . . for those of you that celebrate, I wish for you a time of reverence remembering our Savior, and a time of happiness if you are gathering with family and friends.

In today's world, we all need to take a few moments and draw a deep breath -- relax -- and look around us to count our blessings.

And then go out and hunt for eggs! (Grin)

I hope that you will excuse how quiet it has been here at the Lilypad lately . . . those of you who are still in the I'm-working-so-I-can-buy-fabric group will understand. One of these days I will join the I-can-sew-anytime-I-want-to-cos-I'm-retired-now group, and things will be humming around here!

We'll have more merriment and mayhem soon!


Sunday, April 6, 2014

Mug Shots project #2

Hi y'all!!

Spring has sprung, here, and I couldn't be happier about that -- this winter seemed to go on and on! (What? You mean one of these didn't pop up near you, like it did in my pasture?)

Recently I showed you a mug rug that was one of a trio of projects using some lovely Kona Bay fabrics from my stash.

Today I'll show you the second project -- the very biggest one is still under construction! (Grin)

This one is a table topper; I went outside of my usual comfort zone and thought "circle" instead of rectangular! 
Anyone ready for a tutorial? Grab your cuppa and settle in!

So here's what I started with . . .  lots of pretty cups and mugs in all of these lovely Kona Bay fabrics:

Each of these were prepared by tracing a mirror image of the cup or mug onto some Steam a Seam, and then peeling one paper off and applying that to the wrong side of the fabric. Be very careful when you use this method to apply it to the wrong side of your fabric . . . don't ask me how I know so very well . . . just nod and smile and peek discreetly at my pile of "this didn't work out right" scraps. (Grin)

Then the cuppa was cut out, and ready to apply to the foundation -- a cream tone-on-tone fabric that was also in my stash. (I know, I know, right? If you were here you would pat me on the head and congratulate me for being such a good kid and using fabrics from my stash!)

Next you grab a nearby lampshade (no, I'm not joking) and trace a nice 14 inch circle around the base of the shade, onto your foundation fabric!

Choose some of the cups and mugs and play with the placement, noting color and contrast, until you are pleased with how it looks.

Next (if you're me) you drag out all of your batting scraps and work out the jigsaw puzzle to make the inside of your quilt "sandwich."

Then I whipped out my trusty HeatPressBattingTogether product and made a single piece of batting to use! Love that stuff!

Here are Padsworth and DragonDrop, choosing the thread for the next step -- blanketstitching around each cup or mug in a coordinating color. I didn't try to match each time, just get into the same color family. I kinda like it to be more interesting than matching perfectly.

DragonDrop is convinced that this is the right color for the dark blue mug!

Padsworth decided that the bobbin thread should be this green, since the backing fabric was this scrap of Jenny Calo's green print from the Shimmering Frost line. . .

Looks like he was right! I like how this looks on the back of the table topper! 
I always love using my Aurifil threads! These are from the set "Simply Color" and you can find one for your very own right here! I'm always amazed at how smoothly these sew -- they make it even more fun! Thanks, Aurifil!

Here is DragonDrop's blue mug:

If you like, you can stitch a single line along the rim of the cup or mug:

Then put a narrow binding on the topper. I used bias binding, since it makes it around the curves like a mouse eluding Moses the Studio Cat!

I think the binding finished at a quarter of an inch. Yep, that really IS narrow. (Grin)

And here's Moses, proving that he can model for a blog post just as well as the boys . . .

I hope you enjoyed this quick tutorial. If you would like to make one of these toppers, the patterns for the cup and mug are here in my Google docs folder for you to use.

Let me know if you make one!

Linking up with Katherine, Pam, and Nina at the Thursday Favorite Things Hop! Click on those links and join the fun!