Red Sunflower

Yesterday I was able to finish my Let's Book It project, which I'm calling "Red Sunflower".

It reminds me of the Floristan Sunflowers I grew several years back.

It was a fun experiment working with the decorative stitches on my sewing machine. If you read the beginning of Karen Linduska's book, she gives you lots of permission to experiment and that is exactly what I did.

I was supposed to use "grass stitch" around the edges of the leaves above. This is what her grass stitch looks like on her machine.

I didn't have anything on my machine (a Bernina 750QE) that looked exactly like hers, and so I decided to go with my stitch #631.

She suggested going around each leaf twice, and I ended up doing that just to get it to look the way I wanted it to.

I was never too red hot on the idea of using twisted yarn like she did in her project, pictured below:

After going around the leaves, I decided to use this at the edge of the "ground" piece. I went across one direction, and then turned and went back the other direction. 

But I still wasn't happy with how it looked, and so I went across the edge of the orange-red piece with a satin stitch.

I thought the petals would be more difficult than they were. I ended up adjusting both the length and the width of mine. Then, I was pretty much finished. There was so much bulk in the piece with both the batting and the heavy-weight stabilizer that I didn't think my envelope method was going to work. There was going to be too much bulk at the edges. Besides, my design ended up too close to the edge of the fabric. Next time, I'd cut the foundation piece larger. I decided to use a serging-type stitch at the edge...only, I was so anxious to finish it off that I totally forgot to put a backing fabric on it. Duh.

But now you can see how it looks from the back. I used an invisible monofilament thread in my bobbin.

This was kind of fun, and now that I've done one, I think I can do better next time around. There are some cute projects in this book. I like this one below.

I've tried doing designs like the one below. I like this one, but I can imagine the flowers would be a little tricky to stitch.

I must be in a sunflower mood.

But of all the projects in the book, I think the one below is my favorite. Not sure why...it just appeals to my eye.

So, if I return to my goals for August, I should be working on sewing together the Hello Moon quilt. But then I thought better of it, and I decided to work through from my oldest projects first. And that works out great because I really am feeling a yen to finish this Gardener's Journal quilt, which is close to my oldest unfinished project. Here's how it looked last time I worked on it.

There are three blocks left to piece together, and I have all the embroidery pieces finished. In fact, they've been finished for quite some time.

So that's what I'll work on next. I'd like to get this to the flimsy stage and then work on quilting it in October.

Also yesterday, I made another three quarts of pasta sauce. I'd like to get at least one more batch of pasta sauce and one more batch of salsa, but I'm afraid my tomatoes aren't going to ripen fast enough. I'm planning to supplement my own "stash" with some from the farmer's market tomorrow.

Yesterday afternoon, I checked on the plums. They are nicely purple now, but still quite hard. A few more days and they too will be ready for plum chutney. I might even make a plum tart if I get really energetic.

Today is a cooking day. The kids are coming for dinner tomorrow, and I'm going to make a couple of salads. Valerie has been keeping us supplied with smoked salmon from Alaska, and I'm going to make a smoked salmon cheeseball as well. More about that later.

What do you have planned for the weekend?

10 comments from clever and witty friends:

Linda M @ Pieceful Kingdom said...

The Red Sunflower turned out great! Now I wish I had more decorative stitches on my machine.
I wish I could ship you some of my tomatoes...i've had to give away LOTS this summer. We'll be trying to use up some more this weekend...

Vroomans' Quilts said...

I do love your project, so different and unique. And it is fun to learn what your machine can do besides 1/4" seams.

Kirsty said...

Red sunflower looks great. Well done! Loving the look of the plums. Yummo! Lazy day for me today. Vacuuming and working on an assignment for uni, maybe getting in a bit of stitching if I have time. Had a lovely chat with Lil' Fluff this morning - she jumped up on the bed by my head and 'explained' that it was time to get up. I caught myself just smiling and smiling as we chatted. These furry friends of ours are such blessings. Nose kisses from mine to yours. xx

Lyndsey said...

I love the way your red sunflower turned out and the other projects in the book look fun.

I finished of a dressmaking project today that I started last year. I made a dress which only needed the buttonholes and buttons added but for some reason had been put away. I'm also working through some mending, boring but has to be done. Then tomorrow I can start a new project.

quiltzyx said...

Red Sunflower is so fun! Since it's a wall hanging, nobody will see the back anyway, right? Plus I like that you can see your stitches back there too. And I know why you like the one best from the book...those are CATTAILS!!!! HAHAHAHAHAHAAaaaa!!!

Oh boy, smoked salmon cheeseball - that sounds wonderful! Even though I am soooo full right now. My pal Brad took me out for lunch at the Curry House today. I have enough left to have for dinner tonight or lunch tomorrow too.
As for the weekend, Saturday is the big b'day party for my friend Mary Ann (Auntie's Ceramics) & Sunday I'm working. While at work, I'll be doing some rip-stitching on a donated quilt top. It's a lovely sampler top, but the borders are just wrong, so off they are coming.

Junebug613 said...

Red Sunflower came out great! Awww! It's sweet that you were so excited that you forgot the backing! Besides, who's gonna see the back anyway? I can't wait to see what you do next. I like your favorite from the book too! I don't know if it's the colors or the design, but there's something that just draws you to it. Mmmm smoked salmon!

Kate said...

Red Sunflower turned out beautifully. Congrats on the finish. I'm doing the same thing with my goals for this month, working on my oldest UFO. Hope you can make some time for sewing while you are getting ready for your trip.

Michele said...

I too like the way it turned out. At some point I really need to check out all the decorative stitches my machine can do.

Diane Wild said...

What fun patterns. I'll investigate that book. Ripening produce keeps one on their toes and in the kitchen. How will you get it done in a week?

Teresa in Music City said...

Love your Red Sunflower - you definitely are on a sunflower kick lately :*) But I'm with you - that Cattails/Dragonfly project is gorgeous!!! I think it is the colors that draw me in and make me want to stay :) I sure don't know how you get everything done - canning too? Amazing! And so yummy!!!!