Monday, July 21, 2014

Something New, Something Old

I was sitting around the other day just thinking.  Thinking 'I sure would like to use more pastels'.  I'm more of a bold, in-your-face color person-but this day I was feeling delicate!

I had some shot cottons that were begging to be used.  I wanted big shapes that were not all the same size.  This is what I came up with.  

13 3/4" x 37 1/4"
I decided I would call this table runner 'Shards' because of the shape of the triangles and the extra pieces on the side.  I used a lovely gray which lets the shot cottons stand out.  


I didn't use a pattern for the triangles, so each one is slightly different from the next.  This one features 10 different colors.  Random geometric quilting mimicking the shapes!


15" x 41"
I also made another 'wave' table runner.  Shot cotton again...14 different colors against a cream background.  I used tarragon green on the back and did my ever favorite 'waves' for the quilting! 



Thank you Crepe Myrtle for the lovely color and flowers...you make my day seeing your beautiful blooms every day!  

And just because I finished, washed and added hanging gear, I'm showing you the Mini-Quilts one last time!  I'm a sucker for crinkles!


12 3/4" x 17"
Now its time to get back to quilting.  I have cowboys waiting for their final touches!  Have a great day!

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Friday, July 18, 2014

Hearts & Hedgehogs!

A while back...April to be exact...I attempted my first paper pieced hedgehog (Link to post HERE).  

He was adorable and I was inspired to make another one even bigger than the orginal (2 1/2" x 3 1/2").  I did.  But let's not stop there!  I made an even bigger one for the MQG Fabric Challenge featuring Michael Miller fabric. 

3 3/4" x 5 1/2"
5 1/2" x 7 1/2"
I wasn't sure what I would do with the pieces after I finished them.  Both were without sight for 3 months!  

After finishing the MQG Fabric Challenge Pillow, I knew I had to finish these guys.  Why not a zipper pouch?!  I was finally having some luck putting zippers in without having them look like a two-year-old did it, so had to keep the momentum going!

I also had a chance to get some fabric dyeing done too!  Britt and I have been trying to use up some dyes so we can make fresh colors.  Its been so long and my stash was next to nothing.  

I ombre dyed some onesies and wanted to see how a couple would turn out doing Shibori on them.  Both worked out great!



I was sure I could use this method and make a heart...worth a try for sure!  And it worked!  Cute little hearts!


3 1/2" x 5 1/4"
I thought the Radiant Orchid was a nice touch for hearts! 

Just a couple finishes I have actually and finally finished!

Shibori~ is a cloth resist-dyeing technique that may include binding, stitching, folding, twisting or clamping.  Very labor intensive!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Yippie-Ki-Yay!!!

I am starting the easiest ever twin quilt and block!  Quilting 101.  I kind of feel like I'm cheating somehow.  But first let me give you some back story!

My daughter Britt connected to a lady who is a quilt maniac.  Actually, a feed sack maniac!  I think I have made 4 quilts for her and perhaps as many as 6-7-8 pillows.  She is a lady who knows what she wants!  I've been working with her for maybe 3 years now.  Sweet lady, 3 children.  She even entrusted me to make her a quilt using blocks that friends and family adorned when she was married!  She trusted me with the task...I was sweating bullets!  In the end, she loved it.  

About 2 years ago, she wanted me to make a twin quilt for her first son.  Teri knows what she wants!  She wanted this fabric.  A vintage, almost a home dec weight.  She found it on Etsy in a shop called:  Two Sparrow Studio.  You can see the fold line...very vintage!


I purchased the material and proceeded to make this quilt with a matching pillow cover (smaller blocks).  

70" x 90"
Per request, this is the design.  Your basic 4-patch.  Her son loved it, Teri loved it...win, win!

A month of so ago, Teri contacted me again and wondered if I could do it all over again!  The had another son about 2 years ago!  

Sure I can!  Oops!  I don't have any fabric!  Two Sparrows Studio only had a couple pieces listed...what!!!  Did I mention that Teri knows what she wants?!  She ended up contacting the shop and low and behold...she still had plenty!  Go Teri!

I didn't exactly keep a record of how I put this together.  Size wise.  Luckily Teri came though and measured for me!


10 1/2" x 10 1/2" Cowboy Squares



The four-patch squares are 5 1/2".  Making a 10 1/2" x 10 1/2" square.  Really, this is such an easy quilt!  I actually love the fact that it is a breeze!  After the last few projects I have done, this is a welcome change!


These blocks are for another pillow cover.  They are 6 1/2" square for the cowboy print.  The four-patch are 3 1/2"squares.  

There it is!  Simplicity at its finest!  So very welcome right now!  I feel like doing more!  

What is your favorite 'easy' block?  

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Friday, July 11, 2014

Creative Flow

I love being in a creative flow!  Sometimes it seems like I think too much about something and it usually ends up not good.  Letting go is a good thing!

I've done this design before.  I knew I could change up a few things and do it again.  Maybe even improve on my idea a little bit.  The other day I pulled out the scrap bucket and went to town.  I love doing improv.  To me, it feels.....freeing?!  Hard to describe.  Let's stick with I love it!


I pulled out every blue I had (almost), cut some strips and placed them on my design wall.  Rearranging them until I was happy with it.  


I started with the lightest and worked my way through the pile of strips.  Letting the 'flow' flow!


This was the first batch of blue strips, but I ended up pulling many more during the process. 


I used all kinds of cottons including some gorgeous Kaffe Fasset Shot cotton.  

I sometimes look at this kind of thing I do and wonder what people think.  Mostly those who are not quilters.  Do they see just the color, but not the detail?  Do they wonder WTH... what's the big deal?!  Just wondering out loud!


  

The last one I did like this, I added bubbles flowing to the top.  This time I decided I would not do that. I struggled with the binding as well.  I ended up piecing together the binding trying to keep the flow.  I kind of like it!


Quilting this was very much fun!  I used half a dozen different colors of thread and 'waved' out!  So much fun and so fast!

So, a few stats on this mini quilt/wall hanging. 

35 different shades of blue
78 quilted wave lines
13" x 17 3/4" 

I was having so much fun with this one, you guessed it...I had to do another!  I always wanted to do a sunset.  Here is my version of that.


I only used 30 different colors in this one.  But there are still 78 quilted lines!  It will be the same size as the blue waves and have the same kind of binding.  

I think I got it all out of my system now.  It was a fun, rewarding and happy process for me!  Actually, I'm debating on doing one more!!!  Seriously.  I was thinking Canyon Sandstone.  It would be so pretty in terracotta, orangey browns...to be continued!

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Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Floral and Coral

I'll admit I get on these crazy binges where I am tired of looking at a stack of fabric.  I want it gone, used up, out of my way.  I don't know what to do with it.  But if I throw it out there...I'm sure to think of something!

Case in point.  I have had this jelly roll of Amy Butler fabric staring me down for way too long.  While I love the coral warmth of the roll, it really isn't me.  It no longer was rolled with the edges fraying, it just was time.  

I set out with absolutely no plan. It sure doesn't help the creative energy!  Eventually I decided I may as well try a Herringbone design.  Nothing to lose but space on the shelf, right?!


With my pile ready to go, I started piecing some panels.  I knew I wouldn't have enough strips to make an entire herringbone quilt, so I had to improvise.    



This was the beginning.  Just a thought, a not so thought out plan.  I knew full well this would be the case and was fully prepared for it.  


For the most part this is where I am at right now.  Interesting.  Different.  Perhaps a little 'out there'.   
Floral and Coral

I think what I should do is destash some fabric.  Somewhere, somehow.  When I first started quilting I had not one ounce of taste!  Not one pinch of style!  I was like a kid in a candy shop buying fabric...especially if it was on sale!  I am pleased to say those days are gone!  Just not the fabric!

Which brings me to a delicious stack of freshly ironed Kaffe Fasset woven stripes.  I cannot wait to dig into this!


This is more like it, more like me!  Throw in a stack of solids with this and viola!  I'm in heaven!

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Thursday, July 3, 2014

Summer Fun

Summer is in full swing.  The lure of the great outdoors is ever present.  But first, gotta get those blocks done!

My June BOM is done.  Actually I have had it done for a good week or more.  And since the next series will be hitting the 'in' box, I thought I had better share this before I get behind! 







This time I actually followed the directions and didn't mess either one up!  I am getting so excited for the end of the series.  Only because I am getting antsy to put all these blocks together.  Participating in my first block of the month has been so much fun.  I definitely would and will do another one!

Many thanks to AnneMarie of Gen X Quilters for hosting the Vice Versa BOM!  I'm sure it was a lot of work, but she pulled it off beautifully!

I was lucky enough to steal some time (mostly from weeding) to hand dye some baby onesies!  


I decided to do the first batch using a 'dip dye' ombre method.  The ended up pretty good, but next time I think I will do much better.  They are cute...and tiny!  Are babies really that small?!



For the last two, I wanted to try something a little different.  Shibori is a little time consuming, but I love the effect you get from it.  Radiant Orchid for this little outfit!


Can't forget the boys!  Blue!  I doubt that I would do so many tiny circles on the next ones, but it sure turned out cute!

There it is.  My little world.  In between weeding.  And more weeding.  Oh, did I mention I'm weeding again today?!  

Monday, June 30, 2014

Michael Miller Fabric Challenge

It sure seemed like I would never complete my first Modern Quilt Guild fabric challenge! The fabric has been staring me down for weeks, my mind has been frantically trying to come up with something...anything...I was feeling completely design challenged!  It helped that there were others in the same boat as me, thankfully the deadline was extended!



This is the fabric we needed to incorporate in our quilted project.  Michael Millers' Petal Pinwheels.  I don't use a lot of prints, so it certainly was a challenge for me!  

What did I decide to do?!  Make a pillow.  Yep!  I went there!  I have been wanting to enlarge the paper pieced hedgehog for some time now, and then wondered what would it look like with some prints.  There it is, two birds one stone!



First step, enlarge the pattern.  The original hedgehog was 2 1/2" x 3 1/2".  My 'bigger is better' hedgehog finished at 6" x 8".  

I added extra paper on the outside of the pattern and extended the lines allowing for a 16" x 16" finished pillow cover.  I could have added a border around the little guy after he was finished, but I really wanted the angles of the paper piecing.  After cutting the pattern apart I remembered to add slightly over 1/4" for the seam allowance.  One problem I had on previous hedgehogs was remembering to do that!  


  
This is the beginning stages.  I must say, it was a little difficult working with such a big piece.  I made a few mistakes along the way too!  If you have ever paper pieced you know how difficult it is ripping out those teeny tiny stitches!  I swore several times.  My husband told me to put it away.  But I was determined to make it to the end!



And I did!  Here is a look at the back.  I love seeing pretty little seams!  It's like a special reward!


How's this for carnage?!  I also love riping the paper off the back after I finish!  Actually, I was so excited about finishing that I tore the paper off before I put the pieces together. Live and learn has become my mantra on so many projects!



Which brings me to quilting this crazy little guy!  I started with 1/4" lines and ended with 3/4" on the top half.  Under his little stubby feet I went wild and pretended I was making the ground.  Something different.  I even embroidered his little eye too!  Can't have another blind hedgehog!   

FRONT
BACK


And there you have it.  Finished, stuffed and brow wiped!  I kind of feel like I 'copped out' on this project.  I didn't use very much of the fabric.  My saving grace...we could use as much or as little as we wanted and it had to be quilted!  I'm happy with 'Michael the Magnificent Hedgehog'!  

Linking:

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Reveal!

I have a big reveal!  My wonderful customer Kathleen, was kind enough to send pictures of her new queen quilt and pillow covers.  It isn't often that I actually get to see what these wild and crazy quilts look like in someones home...so this was a treat for me!

First, I show a few pictures of the pillow covers.  I must say, it is scary and difficult to make something custom.  As for the pillow covers, well I relied on measurements that Kathleen provided me.  Adding extra for seam allowances and shrinkage, I was sweating bullets hoping they would be the right size!  And they were!  You never know how much they will shrink, if any.

This was the littlest one.  12" x 24"
#1~26.5" x 26.5" Square

#2~26.5" x 26.5" Square
Largest at 18" x 52.5"
Just in case, I didn't put any of the fabric away.  It certainly was possible that they wouldn't fit.  And I wanted to be prepared.  You know...just in case!

After receiving a lovely message and pictures...I sighed a huge breath of relief...blushed a little from the sweet compliments and began to relax and plan my next project!


  
And here is the Reveal!!!  Thank you for putting up with my endless posts about this quilt project!  It seemed to go on forever didn't it?  

For me, this is the payoff.  Seeing it displayed and having a very happy customer!  I'm sure Kathleen will have many, many years of enjoyment and warmth from her very own, one-of-a-kind art piece!

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