Tuesday, 15 January 2019

What do Parsnips Have to Do With Quilts?

My great fabric destash is in full swing. I am worried though ... feeling a bit like a dieter who is gung ho to start a program January 1 only to fall victim to a plate of cinnamon buns 6 weeks later ... the excitement and momentum may fall away to winter solitude. I feel accomplished just giving my sewing space a good cleaning ... I actually clogged up our Electrolux with a ball of thread! Whoops.

My New Year's resolution this year is to destash like a mad woman! If you follow me on Instagram @foxy_mcphee (my maiden name is Fox) you will see me, and others use the hashtag #sewmystahs2019. I encourage you all to follow along and start cutting into your own stash.

I show you this bag of turnips for a reason .... I feel I am a pretty good cook, I'm a bit frugal actually, in the kitchen. My granny taught me to waste nothing ... the bread crusts got dried and crushed into crumbs, the mold gets carved off the end of the cheese and at the end of the week, whatever is left in the vegetable drawer gets thrown into a pot to be used up. Soup is never made twice the same in our house.

I decided that I needed to start sewing in the same way I cook .... see what kind of ingredients I have on hand and supplement frugally here and there to finish off the dish. Too many times I bought a fat quarter bundle or a kit 'on sale' ... maybe I had 'big plans' to start something new only to see it live in a plastic box. I only have 3 large appliqued kits nagging at me.

Back to the parsnips .... how magically these ugly roots get together with some carrots and potatoes ... I dug deep in the freezer to find some old stewing beef .... I only needed to pick up a bit of spice and add some fresh bread. Voila, a masterpiece.

Just like the waiting masterpiece at the bottom of my fabric bin! I love to see the process of turning raw ingredients into something spectacular.

Some rough product, a little elbow grease and some time ..... supper is served!

I'm proud of this bread I baked last week. It was my 2019 resolution to learn to make bread. My friend Robin walked me through the first batch. It tasted as good as it looks! Success.

This supper was enjoyed by me and my family. I love it when my hubby brags to his fishing buddy about something I cooked. He was quite impressed with the bread adventure. It has taken me awhile but it came to me over the holidays .... why don't I sew the way I cook? See what I have on hand, add a bit of spice and 'stew' up something special. Like these bread loaves ... finished is better than perfect!

Don't save things for a special occasion ... today is a special occasion!

I love how these I Spy quilts turned out. I have been feverishly cutting into my kids fabric, determined to empty it out. I have promised myself that I can not start any new projects until I finish one ... as in finish .. start to finish ... not just finish the top, but finish it all .... top, quilted and bound (boo ... binding! my least favourite part of the process). I picked a bunch of Netflix movies to help me along with the binding process ...

An I-Spy quilt is typically made up of novelty prints like the ones I have pictured. They are fussy cut with pictures ... anything goes ... animals, candy, flowers, super heroes ... the idea is to mimic a game of I-Spy in quilt form.

I made two I-Spy quilts .... one more feminine and the other more generic (I had lots of pink for some reason!) I used red bricks on the quilt below and quilted it with a variegated rainbow King Tut thread. I'm pleased with how it turned out. The panto is a new one called outer space. I really had fun with it.

And of course, cuddle on the back for both of them.

These little throws make for great car or picnic quilts. We especially love heading out to our local Drive-In each summer to watch late night movies. We are lucky to be in a community with one of the last standing out door theatres. These throws will be sure to keep sweet Darby cozy and occupied. She had a great time 'helping' me with the fabric and layout.

Here's a shot of the rough product .... like my stew ... some raw, rough products, can turn into something amazing at the end of the day!

And cut, cut, cut ..... sew, sew, sew .....

To success!

I have made a few different versions of the children's quilts over the years. This time out, I used the simple bricks pattern again. Other times, I have used 5" charms and 2/5" squares to construct them. Use whatever you have on hand. I did not buy one thread for these sweet quilts. From the top, backing and binding, it was all hobbled together from my stash. As you can see, this quilt is Casey approved! I should print that on a quilt label.

I'm determined to see the bottom of my kids fabric box this winter so you will definitely see more I-Spy's coming out of Queen Street. I also plan to have an Etsy shop up and running by spring. If you want to lay claim to one of these cuties before that, please contact me.

As always, may your pins stay sharp and you sew with joy.


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