Super Mom – No Cape!

One mother sharing her knowledge with others

Archive for May, 2011

WIP Wednesday – Hand Basting My Scrappy Nine Patch

Posted by supermom on May 25, 2011

Over the weekend, I got the flying zebra baby quilt and one of the child-sized quilts hand basted.

This shows the fabric that I chose for the back of the flying zebra quilts and also what the hand basting looks like from the back.

Dave’s away on a contract for a few days, which means that it won’t matter if I have a larger quilt taking up residence on the dining room table for a day or two, so I decided to baste my scrappy nine patch.

Last night, with the help of our son who is home from college for the summer, I got the back and front rolled up neatly around the 1X4 basting boards and then got those rolled out a few inches and arranged on the table with the batting in between. (Forgot to take a picture of that, but will on the next quilt)

This morning, I started the hand basting.

By noon I had almost 1/3 of it basted.

At which time, I remembered that it was the 25th and I hadn’t posted the next post in my Christmas on a Budget Series.   So if you’ve been following along with the series, be sure to check back later this evening.

This post has been added to WIP Wednesday over at Freshly Pieced.

Posted in Quilting, Sewing | Tagged: , , | 7 Comments »

FNSI Results

Posted by supermom on May 21, 2011

Last night’s Friday Night Sew In didn’t go exactly as planned.   I did manage to get this little sewing companion almost finished last night.  I completed the last bit of sewing on it today.

Instructions and pattern can be found here.    Instead of the button and tassel closure I use pearl snaps.

That’s the sum total of what I accomplished before I started having an extended hot flash that if I believed in such things, would have had me wondering if instead of being raptured with the rest of the faithful, I was getting a dose of the other place.  Rather than the sewing I had planned on doing, I spent a good part of the evening sitting with an ice pack on the back of my neck and a fan blowing directly at me.

So quilt basting has been delayed until today.  When I need to take breaks from that, I’ll be checking out what some of the other FNSI participants accomplished.   Not sure if I’ll make it to all 175 blogs that signed up this month, but I’m going to try because I think that’s one of the most fun aspects of FNSI… blog hopping and getting see what everyone else was working on.

Posted in Friday Night Sew In, Sew easy projects, Sewing | Tagged: , , | 2 Comments »

WIP Wednesday and FNSI Reminder

Posted by supermom on May 18, 2011

Today I’m working on sewing the quilt back for this scrappy nine patch quilt top:

A larger photo of the quilt top can be seen here.

I’m using a thrifted white cotton sheet for the back but it wasn’t quite long enough so I added a row of blocks made from the leftovers fabrics from the front.

When I was pressing the sheet to get it ready to use, I noticed one small area of discolouration and a couple of little stains that look like marker stains so decided to conceal them with some appliquéd hearts.

I’ve got one heart done, two more basted and ready to appliqué.   The back is going to need another good pressing once I get them sewn down.

And now I’m actually glad there were those little flaws that needed to be creatively covered up, because I really like what those three simple hearts are adding to the back.

Once I’m finished with this quilt back, I’ve got one more to make for my Disappearing Nine Patch quilt  top and then it’s on to cutting batting to fit.    Then  I’ll have 5 quilts ready to be hand-basted.  Almost perfect timing for FNSI  this Friday, May 20.   Though I may also spend that evening getting acquainted with the vintage Singer 15-91 that I won on an ebay auction on Mother’s Day.

If you haven’t done so already, you can still sign up for this month’s Friday Night Sew In over at Handmade by Heidi.  Just click on the FNSI button below.

Handmade by Heidi

This post has been added to WIP Wednesday #27 over at Freshly Pieced.

Posted in Friday Night Sew In, Quilting, Sew easy projects, Sewing, Thrifting | Tagged: , , , , | 3 Comments »

Quilt Tops and Mystery Plots

Posted by supermom on May 16, 2011

Originally I had only cut enough of the flying zebra fabric to make a baby quilt.  But when I realized I had enough left to turn the rest of it into two more child-sized quilts if I added a couple of horizontal strips in a coordinating fabric between the repeating print sections, I decided to go ahead and a make up three quilt tops.

Due to my sewing machine having some stitching issues and requiring not one but two trips to the repair shop (it’s still acting up), I didn’t get these done last week as I’d planned.  I finished the last top yesterday morning.

Here’s the baby quilt top.  It measures 51”X51”.

Each child-sized quilt tops measure 40”x60”.

I’m planning a hand-basting blitz over the next few days to get these ready to quilt.

As mentioned in this post, once it’s quilted and bound, the baby quilt will be going to Bama Bound Quilts for the tornado quilt victims in the Tuscaloosa area.  One of the two child-sized will be donated locally.   But I’ve decided to keep the second one to have for any visiting little ones to use during their stay.

Now… for the mystery part of this post:

Anyone who knows me knows that I love to read a good mystery.  My current favourites:  The Bewitching mystery series by Madelyn Alt, The Aunt Dimity books by Nancy Atherton, The Cottage Tales of Beatrix Potter by Susan Wittig Albert and The Victorian Mysteries by Robin Page (written by Susan Wittig Albert and her husband Bill) just to name a few.  Oh and of course, anything by that grand old dame of mystery writers… Agatha Christie.

Now it also goes without saying that I also love fabrics, sewing and quilting.  So when I discovered a way to combine the two, you know that I had to jump right in.

Quilting is Murder is a unique twist on the ever popular blog hop.  Starting on May 1st and continuing for 9 weeks a new chapter of the mystery is posted.   The chapters are available to anyone who wants to read them, but the real fun comes when you register to become a detective.

Once you’re registered, you can log in and access the list of 18 shops that are participating this time round.  Once you’ve visited each shop and collected all the clues, you’ll be entered into that week’s prize drawing.  And if you complete 5 of the nine weeks, you’ll then be entered into the Grand Prize drawing.

I registered the first week of May but there’s 7 more weeks to go, if you’d like to play along as well.  Oh and for my readers living in Canada, you’ll be pleased to know that one of the shops participating, Sew Sisters, is Canadian owned and operated.  They have both an on-line shop and a retail shop.

A mystery to solve, clues to gather and fabric to browse, now that’s what I call a winning combination.   At least, I can sure hope it makes a winning combination because if the first two weeks are any indication… I wouldn’t mind winning, nope, I wouldn’t mind in the least.

Posted in Quilting, Sew easy projects | Tagged: , , , | 3 Comments »

Bloggers’ Quilt Festival – Yellow Bear Quilt

Posted by supermom on May 14, 2011

My entry into the Bloggers Quilt Festival would certainly not qualify as the most beautiful or most intricately pieced or the most original.  Its design is a simple one; flannel blocks from a bear print that I fussy cut alternating with a coordinating yellow flannel.

Those blocks are framed with a single border cut from that same yellow flannel with a fussy cut rocking horse in each corner.

I used a coordinating yellow plaid flannel for the binding.  You can’t get much simpler than that.

What makes this quilt special, to me at least, is that it’s the second quilt I’d ever made; there being a twenty plus year gap between it and the first.   Also, this is the first baby quilt I’ve ever made.  Can you imagine… I have three adult children and even though I sewed a lot of their clothes when they were little, I never made them a quilt.

This quilt was made for Dave’s second grandchild.  I started it a few months before she was born, but she didn’t receive it until her second birthday.   Oh… I got the top finished before she was born, but then I got stuck because I wasn’t sure how to finish it.   It took almost two more years of reading quilt blogs and seeing how other people did things before I decided that ready or not, that quilt needed to be finished so that said grandchild could use it before she outgrew it.

There were so many things I learned over the process of making this quilt, starting with some basic quilting terms.  At the time I was cutting out the blocks for the top, I didn’t even know the term “fussy cut.”  I just knew I wanted a bear in the middle of each block and cut them out that way.  It wasn’t until later that I learned that fussy cutting was the term used to describe cutting out blocks to feature a certain print.

I learned about ¼” seams.  But it wasn’t until later that I figured out that a ¼” seam isn’t really a ¼” seam, it’s an almost ¼” seam.

I learned how to piece a backing.

I learned how to sew on a binding using a tutorial by Sharon Schamber.

I learned that I hate pin basting; which is one of the reasons why up until a month ago this quilt was only the second I’d ever completed.  Now that I’ve discovered hand-basting (again through another Sharon Schamber video tutorial) I’m hoping to get this top and this top turned into finished quilts.

Oh… and one more thing I learned is that quilts can be incredibly difficult to photograph.

But finally and perhaps most importantly, I learned that the quilting and crafting community contains some of the most interesting, generous and fun-loving people I’ve ever encountered.

Amy's Creative Side
Be sure to check out all the other quilts entered into the Bloggers’ Quilt Festival being held over at Amy’s Creative Side.

Posted in Quilting, Sew easy projects | Tagged: , , , | 9 Comments »

Bead Angels from an Earth Angel

Posted by supermom on May 12, 2011

A while back, I read a blog post in which the lady had made several pretty little beaded angel dangles.  I left a comment along the lines that I loved them and if she didn’t live an ocean away, I’d be asking to buy some from her.

Later that day I received the sweetest e-mail from Nancy over at Heaven is Handmaid that really touched my heart.  She said that she made those little angel dangles too and if I’d send her my mailing address, she’d send me a couple. Now how cool is that.

I asked if I could send her something in return but she replied that there was no need.  Another e-mail alerted me that my petite packet would be on its way Monday morning.

The following Saturday when Dave brought the mail in and told me there was a box for me, I couldn’t think what it could be.  I hadn’t ordered anything.  It never even occurred to me that the package might be from Nancy.  I knew that two angel dangles could fit in one of those little padded envelopes so that’s what I’d been watching for; though not really expecting them for at least another few days.

But of course, the package was from Nancy.  And there weren’t just a couple of angel dangles.  There were six!

Each angel was different; each with it’s own little personality.

There was also a Japanese flower keychain, a notebook, a package of needles and a sweet note from Nancy, as well.

I was so overwhelmed and touched that I started crying and Dave had to come give me a hug and hold me while I let the tears flow.   You see… we’ve had a few struggles lately that I don’t talk about here on my blog.  Nancy’s gift was such a generous and kind-hearted gesture that it was like the Universe was sending me a message that everything was going to be okay; things were going to work out.

So thank you Nancy… both for the gift of angels (and other goodies) and for being an Earth Angel when I really needed one.

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Cross Blocks Done in Red and White

Posted by supermom on May 10, 2011

Way back in February, (this year is slipping by so fast)… anyway, back in February, Jenny from Cut.Sew.Iron.Repeat put out the call for red cross blocks so that she could complete a charity quilt to be raffled off at this Aids Walk fundraiser.

These are the two blocks I sent off to her:

Jenny posted photos of the finished quilt on her blog last week.  It really turned out great.  (My blocks were included on the back.)

I hope the quilt raised lots and lots of money!

*Note:  If you like these blocks and would like to make some for yourself, a tutorial can be found here.

Posted in Quilting, Sewing | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »

How We Over-Winter Potatoes, Sweet Potatoes, Onions and Squash

Posted by supermom on May 9, 2011

My blog Super Mom – No Cape and all its content has moved to

For the contents of this particular post click on the link below:

How We Over-Winter Potatoes, Sweet Potatoes, Onions and Squash

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Quilts for Tornado Victims

Posted by supermom on May 4, 2011

Since I started quilting, I’ve seen many quilt appeals to help the victims of natural disasters and I’ve donated to a few of them in one way or another.  Yesterday, I went searching to see if there were any quilt appeals to help the victims of the recent tornadoes that swept through the South last week.  This is what I’ve found so far:

Michelle from Bama Bound Quilts is asking for handmade child-sized and baby quilts sent in coordinating tote bags with at least one pocket.  She’s also asking that a small stuffed toy be included with the quilt.

Information on where to mail the quilts can be found on the blog she created specifically for this appeal (linked above.)

Since I wasn’t exactly sure how big a child-sized quilt should be, I did a quick search and came up with these measurements:

Crib size – 50”X53”

Toddler – 35”X45”

Child size – 40”X60”

I e-mailed Michelle to determine how the quilts will be distributed and Michelle wrote back saying that the quilts will be distributed through local church and children’s donation sites and she hopes to be there in person to ensure that the quilts do actually go to the children.  In addition to that, she has contacts within DHR and law enforcement communities to help her identify specific families in need.

So you can rest assured than any quilt you send Michelle will be given to a child who needs it.

I pulled this fabric out of my stash to turn into a baby quilt.

Hopefully, I’ll have pictures tomorrow of the finished quilt top.

*Please note:  I’ll add links in this post for other quilt appeals, as I find them.  If you know of any, please let me know so that I can add them here.

Posted in Quilting, Sew easy projects | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

Canadian Quilt of Valour Blocks

Posted by supermom on May 2, 2011

Dave was in the Canadian Army for 25 years before he retired in August of 2000 to take a job on Maui and thus ended our Army adventure and began our living in the USA adventure.

Those 25 years were good years, but I won’t lie and say they were easy years.  Dave did two NATO tours, one peacemaking (to Kosovo) and one peacekeeping (to Bosnia.)  I could have lost him on either of those tours or he could have come home physically wounded.  There were and remain wounds not physical in nature.

So in March, when Cara from Cara Quilts put out the call for Canadian Quilt of Valour Blocks, I knew I had to answer that call.

Following the directions she provided, I made two maple leaf with stems, one maple leaf without stem and one background block.

I stuggled a bit with those points on the half-square triangles on the maple leaf with stem blocks not being perfect.  So I e-mailed some close-up photos to Cara asking if they’d be alright.  She sent back that they were fine, so I mailed the blocks off last Friday and she should have them soon to add to the other blocks that have already arrived.

There is a saying amongst military wives… “We also serve, who stand and wait.”

I was proud to be able to serve again by making some quilt blocks.

Posted in Quilting, Sewing | Tagged: , , | 2 Comments »