Saturday, April 7, 2018

OMG April - Cross roads adventure

Easter weekend passed and I had not much time to craft as I spent most of the time with the kids, soaking up the sun, visiting the nautical show in the South of France and walking around. I knitted in the car as DHB was driving, only to find out that I had dropped a stitch and made an error so decide to frog some 30 rows back.

This weekend I need to get back to my cross road quilt, so far I managed to sew two sets of blocks and still a few are waiting already cut. So my One Monthly Goal for April of Elm Street Quilts is to sew two sets of blocks. Ideally I will sew three sets ..... however not sure how realistic that would be.

Post card exchange by Elm Street Quilts

Elm Street Quilts

We all have blogs we read, follow, appreciate. And then there are blogs that become among our favourite blogs to read. I don't remember how I first stumbled upon Patty's blog Elm Street Quilt, somewhere last year ....... And I became an avid reader. So when she proposed for readers to participate in a post card exchange, I did not hesitate. I had never made post cards, and this would be a way of learning something new, and use my stash as much as possible. Of course by sending a post card to someone unknown, also implied that I would receive a quilted card from someone unknown. After all there were 100 cards to be send, so the likelihood that I would receive a card from a quilter I knew were very very small. Needless to say that I love surprises.

As part of the exchange we were asked to provide one word as an indication for our quilting friend to work around. My favourite colour is blue, so no surprise here, I wrote blue.

And then it was waiting for my card to arrive, while I made mine.

The card arrived in a plastic see through envelope and was happy that it indeed arrived, because it is sooo cute. I wondered how many post workers went ooh and ah over the card as it came from the US to Europe.

The card has three little birds in a nest, all blue, and each a different fabric. Thank you Tammy,I love it, my kids love it.

Tammy used a different technique than I did. She had cut the fabric and appliqued it to the back ground fabric and embroidered "hello" on the card. The inner layers are batting and a carton layer all then sewn together with a blue thread.

This card gave me lots of ideas on how to make more myself. As I emailed Tammy to thank her, I joked that I saw a lot of fabric post cards in my future. And with my new sewing machine, I need to practice on lots of little projects to try out all the stitches.

As I was making my card I used Patty's instructions. They were very clear and helped me go through the process. While surfing for ideas I did a search for quilted postcards and found so many cards out there. And sites explaining how to make them and you tube videos.

I wrote about the making of my post card "grey" and made pictures of the different stages of my card

Once we had made our card, Patty has set up a page where we could upload our post cards. All ready to be published on post card parade day.

I am joined today by the following bloggers who are writing a post about the post card exchange. My big question now is of course when the next post card exchange will be.

Denise @ DottieDoodle
Isis @ Creation d'Isis
Karen @ Run Sew Fun
Lynette @ What A Hoot Quilts
Laura @ LC's Cottage
Lisa @ Sunlight in Winter Quilts
Marsha @ Quilter in Motion
Michelle @ Creative Blonde
Paige @ Quilted Blooms
Patty @ Elm Street Quilts
Sandra @ mmm! quilts
Susan @ California Fiber and Music
Valerie @ Val's Quilting Studio

Sunday, March 25, 2018

New recipe 8 Copy cat Boisette

Our baker makes delicous cakes. Most of them are full with cream of all sorts (chocolate, pistache, ....) and off limit for me. One of the cakes they make is a boisette and we tried to copy the recipe at home. It is a mix of pie dough, home made jam and genoise cake.

Make a pie dough, pre-bake it in the oven for some 20 minutes. Remove from the oven, cover with home made jam and the genoise batter. Bake for approximately 30 minutes more. Dust with icing sugar.

24 March

New recipe 7 Apple cake

We were invited at a friend's place and offered to bring desert.
One desert was our copycat cake "boisette" and the second cake was an apple cake. Why two cakes? Well we are five and I wasn't sure if all four kids at their side were going to be there or only two. In the end there were "only" two so we were nine in total.

Both cakes were very appreciated.

Ingredients apple cake:
130 gr soft butter
3 - 4 apples
3 eggs
150 gr sugar
30 gr apple juice (the original recipe asks for an alcoholic drink such as snaps
200 gr flour
half a sachet baking powder (1 teaspoon)
a pinch of salt
optional: icing sugar for decoration

1) Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C
2) Butter the baking tin
3) Peal the apple and cut in four parts, remove the core and make slight incisions on the outer side
4) Prepare the batter by beating the soft butter with eggs, sugar, flour, apple juice and baking powder
5) Pour the batter in the cake tin and place the apples up-side down in the batter
6) Bake for 30 - 40 minutes

24 March

Project 10 CRQ Diamond block

The end of the month is approaching and I had not yet finished my One Monthly Goal objective for March. So this weekend the second block of the Crossroads quilt and part 2 of my OMG) had to be finished.

Because there are quite some triangles cut off the edges I decided to also sew these together to avoid having all these squares flying all over my crafts room. These will be perfect for mini projects or a cushion to match the quilt. And of course good practice projects for FMQ.

So am happy that I have met my objective for the OMG March challenge organized by Patty at Elm Street Quilts by finishing the house block and the diamond block

25 March

Project 9: CRQ House block

Back to my challenge of finishing projects. All in all am doing not too bad, I have made new projects in between such as the happy baby quilt and the post card, however overall am also making progress on my to do list. One of my main work in progress is the Cross Road Quilt in original colours. In January I cut all the fabric for the five blocks that form the main part of the quilt as part of my One Monthly Goal.

Time to start sewing. It went pretty fast, it does help that I have made the quilt last year as well (see my post on finishing the African batik CRQ). The colours are very spring time colours so this is a good time to work on the quilt. Sewing the house block is part one of my March OMG at Elm Street Quilts.

18 March

Project 8 Quilting a postcard

Challenges is what makes us progress, either through reading, or learning new skills, be it making mini quilts or on more scientific topics.

To practice free motion quilting - such a scary thing to do - I figured the easiest would be to start on small projects. What better way to do than to participate in a post card swap organized by Patty at Elm Street Quilts. I signed up and my adventure started.

The instructions were quite clear: make a post card for a quilt friend not bigger than 4x6 inches using the prompt you will receive. I received the prompt grey.

I started drawing on paper different lay outs, had no idea what to make .... only that I had to make it from my stash. After all I had all the ingredients: grey fabric (not solid, mixed with different colours such as red and white), cream coloured fabric for the back, regular batting, and batting for sturdiness to give it the idea of a postcard.

I made several drawings and settled on this one

The colours would be little grey blocks, some triangles in the same fabric using the more red part, a diagonal bar across to give it some depth, one small square in cream and a triangle in cream. I cut, sew and ironed the front side.

And then .... drama .... I did not like what I made ........ should I start all over again .... I went to pinterest for some inspiration and there was just too much choice .....

I decided to finish the post card. If I still disliked after finishing I could always throw it away and make a new one.

I added the two different battings, cut the back side and started sewing across the card to stabilize the different layers.

That was actually easier than expected. On the diagonal bar started playing with FMQ, and as I progressed I liked the card more and more.

I arrived at the white triangle and decided to change the course of the sewing by making perpendicular sewing lines ... if I was not going to be a bit more daring I would never go for it.

Some of the instructions I had read, was to give a zig zag at the edges of the card. Too simple maybe as it would not fit with the rest of the FMQ. I used one of the embroidery lines of my machine for the finish.

And when I was done I just really liked the end result. I hope that my secret quilting friend also will like the card.


New recipe 5: Mascarpone cakes

One can never have too many cake tins, ...... especially with three kids. As much as time allows in my busy schedule I try to make home make "4-hour" snacks for the kids that they take to school. For several reasons: 1) Alesya does not like most of the ready make cookies/cakes; 2) home made cakes are healthier as they do not have loads of colourings and preservatives; and 3) my kids just love it when I bake for them, or in the case of Slava he just loves to help me.

As I cannot make the same cakes over and over, I used this mascarpone recipe that was given with the new cake tin I had bought allowing to make five different little cakes at a time. The basic recipe is easy to make and to adapt to any flavour.

3 eggs
250gr sugar
250gr of mascarpone
300gr flour
1/2 sachet of baking powder

Beat the eggs with the sugar until light and fluffy
Mix in the mascarpone
Add the flour and baking powder
Fill the cake tin and choose a different topping for each cake

1) add a teaspoon of unsugared cacao and mix gently
2) add lemon rind and lemon juice of half a lemon, mix gently and sprinkle with coconut
3) add chocolate chips and mix gently
4) add lemon rind and lemon juice of half a lemon, mix gently
5) add two table spoons of praline

Bake for some 20 minutes at 170 degrees C.

27 January

Saturday, March 3, 2018

OMG March Cross roads quilt

My Cross roads quilt is calling me, I had cut the first five blocks in January and now need to start sewing them up. Am challenging myself this month to sew at least 2 blocks - the house blocks and the diamond blocks. If I manage to finish more, all the better, two is something I can achieve without stressing. After all, being creative is to help me relax. At the same time have soo many ideas running through my head and need to finalize my ongoing projects before starting new ones .....

My challenge is my participation for the March OMG organized by Patty at Elm Street Quilts.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Project 7 Happy baby quilt

The happy baby quilt for Alix is finalized, I love how it turned out. I made quite a bunch of half triangle squares, laid them out on the table without any plan and just loved the result.

And glacon my cat also loves the quilt, she gives me the "stay away, this is mine" look.

Thursday will hand over all the gifts to my friend (the new grandmother) and hope that her son and wife (the new parents) like the quilt.

Making this quilt from start to finish was my February One Monthly Goal organized by Patty at Elm Street Quilts. Happy dance as I finished in time.

I did not make a specific label, I know I should. This will be something to think of for the next quilt. I did however, iron my name on the quilt