Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Latest Happenings

my life has been creeping back to normal ever so slowly....  or at least my new normal.  i have also been sewing.  which is like therapy for me.  so i am happy, happy, happy.

out in the blogland, instagram, twitter, and other such communities on the internet i came across Elizabeth from Oh, Fransson! pattern for her Aviatrix Medallion quilt and she is having a quilt along for it.  i got the pattern from her site which i highly recommend this pattern.  its a stunner.  Elizabeth originally made it using solids - Kona from Robert Kaufman to be exact.

i have never done a quilt out of solids.  i really liked the colors that Elizabeth used in her original quilt but i didn't love them.  then Elizabeth announced that she got to put together some Kona bundles and i fell in love with her Winter one.  the bundles are not out yet but if you go to the Robert Kaufman site it lists the various Kona colors that make up each bundle.  so, i did some shopping and i had the Winter colors and jumped right in.

i love it.  flipping head over heels in love with it.  of course i did not use white as the accent color i took Elizabeth's recommendation and did not use black but i did use Kona Pepper.

i spent a day cutting the fabric for this quilt and grouping it into border sections as suggested by Elizabeth.  you might think 'a whole day' - keep in mind i woke up late, ate some meals, did some laundry, might have watched some tv.  so for focused people it might be a few hours of cutting. 

i used the same Essex yarn-dyed linen as per Elizabeth's suggestion for the background fabric which i have never used before.  i love it as well - it is great to sew with.

this is the center of the quilt.  all on the bias.  lets just say that starch was my friend when i put this together and i am pleased as punch with how it turned out.  

the next border was made using some grey neutral Kona.  again starch was my friend.

trimmings from the first border.  always makes me smile because it means progress.

each border is separated with a strip of the background fabric.

the second border finished and yes i pinned it up to a Santa Clause area rug we have hanging on a wall in our house.  by the way the Christmas tree is still up too.

i learned a great way for marking multiple squares when i worked on border #3 and lots of trimmings to show the progress.

the various units for border #3 ready to go.

3 borders on and 3 more to go.  i am in love with this quilt.  i love the pattern.  i love the fabric selection - thanks to Elizabeth.  i love that i got outside of my comfort zone and tried something with solids.

sewing on border #4 which ends up being 1' finished squares of the grey Kona's then another strip of the background fabric will go on.

time to start on the blocks for border #5.

if you have read this far thanks for taking the time to do so.  i am going to try and be better at blogging more.  i hang out on instagram fairly often so you can always find me there as well.

happy sewing

Friday, June 6, 2014


its time for Hands2Help! hosted by Sarah from Confessions of a Fabric Addict.  i must confess.  the quilts i am donating this year have come from my stash of quilts.  they haven't seen the light of day for sometime.  somewhere in the process of making them i fell out of love with them.  i like them just fine but don't love them like they deserve to be loved.  so they go to the quilt stash which i pull from as the need arises.  as such is the case with Hands2Help!

i love using my passion for quilting to make others happy.  i think i have participated in Hands2Help! since Sarah first started it.  i might be wrong but....  

anyways, when i saw Sarah's post about it this year i knew that i was going to participate but that the quilts would come from my stash.

this first quilt was a mystery quilt i started 10 years ago.  it has been finished for about 3 or 4 years.  at the time i started it i had never done a mystery quilt and i also did not know i do not like white as a background fabric.  i do now.  i hope that whoever gets this quilt will give it the proper love it deserves.  this quilt will be going to someone who was impacted by Hurricane Sandy.

this next quilt has about 8 million pieces in it.  not really.  but when i started it i was sure i would never finish it.  i think that is when i stopped loving it.  yep, right from the start i knew it wasn't meant to be mine.  i finished it anyways.  i am like that.  i rarely get rid of a WIP.  self torture?  maybe.  i just like to finish things.  this quilt will find a new home through Happy Chemo.

true confession on this quilt.  it was a BOM from JoAnn's that was on clearance for almost nothing.  i like to call these BOM quilts 'quilting for dummies' - not insulting anyone at all with that comment - the fabric comes pre-cut and the instructions are fail proof.  

yes there is applique involved and even a little embroidery so its not really 'quilting for dummies' but that is just my name for those things.  i made this quilt thinking i would give it to my oldest niece.  that didn't happen so it went into the quilt stash.  this quilt will meet up with its new owner through Quilts of Compassion Disaster Response Team.

there you have it.  my contribution to this years Hands2Help!
i love the thought that these quilts will bring comfort and warmth to another person during a trying time in their life.

happy sewing

Monday, May 19, 2014

Blogger's Quilt Festival - Modern

me again.
two posts in one day.  don't pass out.  its all ok.

in looking at my previous entries for the Blogger's Quilt Festival i discovered that i had yet to enter one of my favorite quilts.

my Cartwheels quilt
pattern by Tula Pink

i have done blog posts about this quilt before but never for the Festival.  i am entering this in the 'modern' category of the Festival.  

i started this quilt in a class at Sisters taught by Tula.  the class was a blast i took it with a friend of mine.  i used Tula's Prince Charming line for the quilt and a background fabric that reminded me of water.  truth be told i had a whole other background fabric in mind when i started picking fabric.  it was a directional print and matching the repeat would have never happened.  so the night (yes, i said the night) before i was to leave for Sisters i went and found the blue background fabric.

of course i had to include a pic of that day.

i absolutely love how the 'cartwheels' look against the background fabric.  i have had several people tell me they look like life preservers floating in water.  its such a bright and fun quilt.

i fussy cut the frogs in the blocks that i used that fabric in.  i try and do this with other projects.  it so fun seeing them all in a circle.

like most of my quilts i pieced the back of it.  no set plan just get the back big enough for the quilt top.  i quilted it myself on my home machine.  i did a variety of quilting patterns in each Cartwheel.  it was a good quilt to work on for improving my quilting techniques because i was not giving the quilt away.  that whole favorite fabric thing again.  i also used the same color of thread in the top and the bobbin so the quilting almost creates another pattern on the back of the quilt.  at least that is what i tell myself.

 i am very happy with this quilt and i love it.  i pushed myself outside of my comfort zone and i am pleased with the results.  this quilt brings back happy memories of that trip and the class.  when i look at it i can't help but smile.

thanks for stopping by to check out my Cartwheels quilt.  please hop over to Amy's Creative Side and check out all of the quilts in the Blogger's Quilt Festival.

happy sewing

Bloggers Quilt Festival - Mini

i know its been forever since i have written a blog post.  lots and lots of life going on over here.  selling my house which took 100+ days but is finally done.  packing and putting things in storage with no idea as to how long they will be there.  settling into my new space which is much smaller then my house was.  also dealing will multiple family/life issues and work.  whew.  so that is my story and i hope to be here more often now that things/life are starting to slow a tiny bit.

so when i was reminded about Blogger's Quilt Festival i knew i wanted to enter a quilt or two into it.  i went and checked out Amy's website and saw that there is a Mini Quilt Category.  i knew right away which quilt i wanted to enter into that category.

my Mini Northern Lights quilt
measures 13" x 16 1/2"

i picked up Jaybirds Mini Hex N More ruler and this pattern when i was on a recent trip to North Carolina.

i knew i wanted to use my Tula Pink stash for this quilt.  so i went digging and came up with some Neptune, Salt Water and Nightshade.  i am so funny about my Tula fabrics.  i both love and hate to use them.  silly i know.  i want to keep them forever but i also want to make things with them.  do you all have fabric that you feel that way about?

i reasoned with myself that if i make a mini quilt with it that i can hang it on my wall and enjoy it and not worry (as much) about it wearing out with use.  i know total dork.  quilts are meant to be used and mine do get used.  blah. blah. blah.

i had fun putting the fabrics together and sewing up this quilt.  it was a quick fun mini quilt to make.  now i can see why mini quilts are becoming so popular.

funny story.  my brother and his family were home for a visit while i was working on this quilt and my brother asked me if i bought the rows of the 8 fabrics already sewn together.  when i told him no and that i cut each piece out using the Mini Hex N More ruler and sewed them together my brother told me i was nuts.  LOL

i did single fold binding on this quilt which is something that i have never done before.  i also hand stitched it down which i normally don't do but since there was only 59" to bind i thought i could handle it.  

i even used some Neptune on the back of the quilt.  i quilted this by just following the jagged lines of the seams that the pattern makes.  i really am happy with it.  it shows off the pattern well.

thanks for stopping by to check out my Mini Northern Lights quilt.  please hop over to Amy's Creative Side and check out all of the quilts in the Blogger's Quilt Festival.

happy sewing

Saturday, January 25, 2014

So..... I Knit

some of you may or may not know that i knit. i took a class about 9 years ago and have never really ventured past scarves and dish cloths.  a few months ago my SIL showed me how to knit with the 'funky yarn' (my term because i can't remember the real name).  so for Christmas i knitted 6 of these scarves as gifts for people.  the 6th one is a solid soft grey.  i didn't get a picture of that one.  i think i finished it the day after Christmas and gave it to my mom.

i also knitted two other scarves or should i say cowls for Christmas gifts as well.  i kept seeing them on instagram and found a couple patterns that i could do.  again no pics.  however, i am pleased with how they turned out.  with that being said i am wanting to venture out of the 'safe zone' of knitting and so on my recent trip to

New Orleans
to see

play here

i discovered an super cute yarn and needlepoint shop in the French Quarter.  its called Quarter Stitch and it is filled with color and inspiration and so many things to look at.

the staff was super friendly which is always a plus.

they also gave us a great lunch recommendation.  i love to eat where the locals eat when i travel.

here are two of the three yarns i bought.  the other is a light weight solid black.  i think the purplish blue one will become a hat.  i know.  venturing out of my comfort zone.  the green one i am not sure about yet.  the shop isn't online but the gal gave me her card and said just to call her up and tell her what i am looking for and she would be happy to help me out.  which is great since the closest specialty yarn shop is 2 hours away.  

on my trip i worked on some embroidery

as well as my Tula Pink hexi project.  i am almost a quarter of the way through it.

i will post more about my trip soon but now i have to get back to work.  being gone for 10 days makes a girl get behind.......

happy sewing

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

I Finished Something

one down many to go......  i got my Cargo Duffle bag finished.  it was one of the last items on my 2014 Quilty Goals list.  i had most everything cut and ready i just needed to sew.

i quilted the panels using warm and natural in the middle and duck cloth as the backing/lining.  i used duck cloth in a couple bags i made for Christmas gifts and love how it holds its shape and gives durability to the bag.

using the duck cloth does make pinning a challenge so i used Clover clips and i love them.  they worked well on this bag.

having made several bags i tend not to always follow the patterns as well as i should.  i know.  i know.  practice what i preach.  read the directions.  my lack of reading came back to bite me in the ass on this bag.  oh well.  i made the handles for this bag how i like to make handles.  using interfacing and some fusible fleece as well as nylon webbing.  i find that it turns out a really sturdy handle that doesn't stretch out as much.

putting the zipper in was fairly easy with the gusset and such but this is also where i messed up and ended up with the gusset opening being a little bit smaller then the side panels.  rather then un-sew and fix the problem i just modified it and added a few pleats to each side.  

the inside seams are bound and the duck cloth is the lining on the bag.

as you can see the bag has really nice shape and structure to it with two outside pockets which are nice.  i doubt the bag is big enough for me for a weekend getaway bag.  maybe an overnight bag.

right now i have all of my knitting in it.  it is working out great for that.  this is a bag that i will make again and yes i will read all of the directions and get the next one right.

i have also been working on an old WIP using Origins.  i have all of the blocks trimmed and the layout is ready.

this isn't the final layout.  i did a little switching around with the help of some instagram friends (i love you gals) and my quilting buddy Denise - love you too.  so next up on my sewing list is getting the middle of this quilt sewed up.  but......  it will be awhile before i get it done.  because i am headed to....

The Big Easy

yup.  checking off another bucket-list item and taking a non-work related little vacation.  i am super excited about it.  i have heard great things about New Orleans and can't wait to experience the city for myself.  me being me and getting the most bang for my buck this trip did not just jump into my head.  it was prompted by......

Dave.  i blame him and i thank him all in the same breath.  

Dave Matthews and Tim Reynolds are playing at the historic and newly renovated Saenger Theatre for not 1 but 2 nights and yes by the grace of God i have tickets for both nights. when these shows were announced last year my wheels (aka my brain) starting turning to see what i could make happen.  i will save you the drama and just say that i made it a possibility and now i am going.  if you are a regular reader you know of my love of his music.  i love the band in concert as well however him with Tim is my favorite.  so i will escape reality for a bit because i know it will be there when i get back and i will enjoy every minute of my Dave inspired vacation.

happy sewing

Friday, January 3, 2014

2014 Quilty Goals

in hopes of getting some quilt related things accomplished in 2014 i decided to make a list.  one of my favorite things to do.  list making.  doesn't always mean that everything on the list will get done......  but at least i have a list.  i once heard the saying 'if you track it - it will improve' i hope that applies to quilting.  i put my list in my journal.  i thought that would be the best place for it considering the likelihood that i will be looking at in on a fairly regular basis.

not a very good pic because i wrote with a metallic pen and then re-wrote over it in purple.  not the prettiest but its a list and in the end that is what matters.

first up on the list is

the Single Girl quilt.  i have had this pattern for a year +.  i have my fabrics selected and the background fabric as well.  templates are all cut and ready to go.  next step is to cut all the pieces out and start sewing.  this isn't a quick quilt at all.  it will take time to cut and piece it all together.  as you can see i have chosen my favorite color for this quilt because this one will stay with me.  i figure if i am going to put this much effort into a quilt it should go to someone who will appreciate it.  lol.

my next quilty goal for 2014 is

too finish my Quilter's Journey quilt from Leann's House.  with one exception (i think) this is my oldest WIP i have.  i started it about 8 years ago.  it was a block of the month from The Buggy Barn.  they sent a pattern and fabric each month with the idea being i would complete a block a month.  i apparently thought i had super powers back then as i was to piece the block and get all of the embroidery finished before the next block showed up.  lol.  i now happily refer to this as the block of the year quilt.  there are 9 blocks total and i am currently in the middle of finishing block #7 pictured above.  if i can get blocks 8 & 9 done this year then i can finish the top and get it quilted and bound in 2014.  which means it took me 9 years to get it done.  fingers crossed that i accomplish this goal.

my 3rd quilty goal for 2014 is a big one.

i want to quilt my current stack of quilt tops that need quilting and stay current with quilting tops that i finish in 2014.  some of you may be saying 'good luck' - i am even saying that to myself.  however, i am going to try.  its a goal not a must do.  at the bottom of that pile is my oldest WIP - a quilt that i have been working on since......  the beginning of time and it just needs to be quilted and bound.  it was a block of the month from Thimbleberries.  funny how my tastes have changed.  i still like the quilt but i think it will be a gift for my brother - not that brother but the other one so don't worry Angie if you are reading this.

going from the bottom to the top of the pile after the Thimbleberries quilt is my Toes in the Sand quilt made with Tula Pink's Prince Charming fabric line.  next is my Swoon quilt made with Tula Pink's Parisville fabric line.  then there is a drunkards path quilt, a bee block quilt and last but not least my own pattern quilt made using the Bliss fabric line.  

so 6 tops in total that need to get quilted. in addition to whatever tops i put together in 2014.  if i am being honest here this is the one goal that might not get accomplished.  i hope to get these 6 done but i don't know if i will be able to stay current on 2014 quilts.  time will tell.

the next goal on my list is to use as much fabric from my stash as possible this year.  i didn't take any pictures of my stash because its all in plastic drawers behind closet doors.  i moved it from my house and got it organized into its new home here at my mom's just before Christmas.  i prefer to keep my fabric stored out of the light as i have seen fabric fade from light exposure.  to each their own but mine is kept in hiding with hopes of it shrinking in 2014.

my next goal is a quilt i want to make out of

Reunion from Sweetwater.  i want to make a granny square quilt.  i have had this layer cake for awhile and i have some Kona navy that will be my setting color.  this quilt has been on my list for awhile and i think that 2014 is the year for it.

i would also like to make a dresden plate quilt using

this lovely fabric from V & Co.  again i have had this on my list and think that it will be a fabulous quilt using the dots and ombre fabric for the dresden plates.  besides its green and green makes me happy so why wouldn't i want to make this quilt in 2014?

the last item on my 2014 quilty goals list is to finish this

my Cargo Duffle bag.  its a pattern from Noodlehead that i cut out the fabric for in November.  don't laugh i know its ridiculous.  one would think that i would just have continued on and sewed it up.  but i didn't so its added to the 2014 list.

that is all that i put on my list for 2014.  i know its ambitious to some and to others it might be a piece of cake but for me (like Goldilocks) its just right.  i know that other projects will jump in.  two already have.  i thought i had quilting ADD but i am beginning to realize that i do not just have to sew on one project at a time but that i can have several going and that its ok if my sewing area looks like a bomb went off in it.

do you have any quilty goals for this year?
i would love to hear what they are.

happy sewing