Sunday, November 22, 2015

100 blog posts!!!!

It's time to do some celebrating!  This is my 100th blog post!!

I'm not the most prolific blogger, much like my sewing speed, I'm the tortoise in the tortoise and the hare.  But I'm ok with slow and steady.  I started blogging December 9, 2007, because I wanted to have a record of what I've made.  Many of my quilts are gifts-- I have very few of my own quilts!

I first started quilting in fall of 1998.  I had just moved to Madison and didn't know very many people.  During the summer, I started league tennis (and still play!!  I love it!).  When the season ended, I wasn't sure what to do.  I was looking through a flyer from the community college that had adult enrichment classes and decided to give the quilting class a try.  I can't imagine how my life would be different today if I didn't take that class!

Here is a retrospective of some of my quilts It's pretty amazing to put them together here!!! (not a comprehensive listing of all of my quilts, but definitely some of my favorites).  Unfortunately, I don't have any pictures of my first 2 quilts.  One thing I would like to work on is to improve the photos I have of my quilts, especially once they are completed.  Too often I am rushing to send them to their recipient and forget to take nice pictures.

Clockwise from upper left:
Trip Around the World - baby quilt for friend Sarah H
Zig Zag - child quilt for Felix
Quietude - commissioned quilt for coworker
Catvent - wallhanging (I've got this quilt!!)
Stars - baby quilt for Sara J

I've got all of these quilts-- they are small :)
Clockwise from upper left:
Boo! - mini wallhanging 
Prism - wallhanging - my design
Kyoto - wallhanging  - from Modern Quilt Studio
Sparkler - mini wallhanging 
Itty Bitty Log Cabin - mini wallhanging

Clockwise from upper left:
Twirling Stars  - baby quilt for friend Lisa
Stars - baby quilt for friend Sarah N
Flip Flops - child quilt for Ella
Funky Boxes - baby quilt for Amelie (My favorite quilt I have made!)
Froggy Star - baby quilt for Olin
Wonky Stars - baby quilt for friend Sarah I (and another version for Kris)
notice all of the Sara/Sarah friends with babies!!!

Clockwise from left:
Wedding March - Bed quilt for my parents (1st large quilt I made!)
Sylvie's quilt - child quilt for Sylvie
Agean Dream - throw quilt for Carol

Clockwise from upper left:
Woodpile -  (I've got this quilt!!) And it's on my bed!
Nine patch - baby quilt for friend Carolyn
Disappearing Nine patch - baby quilt for friend Kim
Jewel Box - baby quilt for cousin Kelly

These are some older quilts
Clockwise from upper left:
Star BOM -  block of the month - still in progress
My bed quilt - still in progress
Bear Paw - my couch quilt
Log Cabin - wallhanging (at my parent's house)

Thanks so much for reading!  And here is to 100 more posts!  I can't wait to see what the next years will bring! =)


Sunday, November 15, 2015

Quilt in a day!

As a quilter, it is very common for me to hear news and have the reaction, "I should make a quilt!"  Whether someone is pregnant or not doing well, I always want to make a quilt.  The problem is that there isn't enough time to make all the quilt I would like to make.  =(

One of my co-workers is fighting cancer and I wanted to make her something to comfort her through her treatments and recovery time.  I picked a simple pattern and recruited my friends to help out.  Heather did all of the cutting and helped sew the rows together.  Kimberly and Bethney helped with the pressing.  I sewed, sewed, sewed.  We started yesterday around 2ish and finished around 10 pm! (We did take a break for crockpot shredded chicken tacos- yum!)

I love the way it turned out.  The fabrics are all from my stash.  We didn't use a pattern (but should have!).  I made a version of this quilt several years ago and read a tutorial at that time.  Yesterday, after a few hiccups at the start, I was thinking-- why didn't I revisit that tutorial!!! =O  All's well that ends well.

This picture is a little washed out.  Once it is quilted, I'll get some better photos.  I'm thinking of using minky for the backing fabric.  Hopefully I will have this finished up as quickly as the top went together.


Sunday, November 8, 2015

Stitcher's is closing =(

Sad news about one of my favorite local quilt shops, Stitcher's Crossing.  The owner, Sharon, has decided to close her doors.  It has been in business since before I started quilting (1998) and  I took classes there when I was new to sewing,  They connected me with a person that buys and sells Featherweights and because of their help, I have the fantastic machine I use for all of my piecing.

Yesterday, I stopped by for the first time since they announced their closing.  There was next to nothing left and it felt like a funeral!  But it was very nice to have one last chat with Sharon.  Hopefully I will see her around in other quilty places. I'm going to miss that shop quite a bit. =(

I did purchase a few odds and ends from what was remaining, but don't have a picture-- nothing too exciting.  The remainder of the bolt of the Maize I'm using in my Maize Maze quilt and a few fat quarters.

Speaking of Maize Maze-- It's moving along.  I almost have the center complete.

Last Sunday, I did some online stash enhancement from Thousands of Bolts.  It was a bit slower at work and I was tempted! No plans for these fabrics, they just wanted to come home with me!

Linking up with Molli Sparkles and Judy at Patchwork Times.


Sunday, October 18, 2015

Fall Retreat

It is a beautiful fall weekend in Wisconsin.  The trees are changing color, the temperatures are falling, but still comfortable and no snow has fallen from the sky!!

I spent this weekend at a crafting retreat in Whitewater with friends.  This is my 3rd year participating with this group and it was loads of fun!  Each year we pick a theme to coordinate our meals and this year was Books and Movies'. We had a horror dinner, murder mystery
dinner (I coordinated that one), a romantic comedy lunch and a western lunch.  Costumes are encouraged!  The mystery dinner was LOL funny and I totally want to do another one.

The help-- Gardner, Butler, Cook

Me as the Butler

The cast: bookish aunt, hot shot grandson, wild child granddaughter, Lady Sutbury, gardener

Kristin the Kid!

I did get some sewing done, too!  Not quite as much as I wanted, but productive none the less!

I started a new generous sized couch quilt that intend to give for Christmas (if I can complete it by then!).  The pattern is Marcie's Maze and I'll call my version Maize Maze.  I started with a fat quarter bundle that I bought at Quilt Expo and supplemented it with some additional fabrics from the same colorway and added a mustard fabric for the sashing.  The pattern is written for a jelly roll, so I had to be creative with my cutting and assembly methods, because I am using fat quarters.  Keeps me on my toes!  So far, I have all of the blocks complete and sewn into rows. Just need to add sashing and sew the rows together.  Not bad!  I'm very happy with the way it is turning out.  =)

And I took a bit of time to get all of my Elephant Parade rows sewn together-- HOORAY!!  Just a few more strips on the sides and the top will be done.  I can't wait to quilt it up and call it finished.  If you look close, you will see new eyeballs on the frog and turtle.  Those little buggers were part of the reason this was not moving forward.  Without a zig zag stitch machine at home, it needed to wait for a time I could use somebody else's machine.

All in all, this was a great weekend!!

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Block Tote...issues! =(

My fellow Mad Mod Member, Trina, asked for pattern testers for her new tote bag pattern.  The timing was right and I volunteered.  The concept is to use an orphan block as the decoration, but I don't really have any! Instead, I spent half of my Saturday morning looking through books and pinterest to get block inspiration.  There were a few things that looked appealing, but I ended up deciding on making a block from some leftover bonus half square triangles.  These are from 'Quietude'- a baby quilt a co-worker commissioned.

I did the math and thought the block would be 10.5" The pattern calls for a 12" block, so I would add some coping strips and call it good.  I did the math wrong!!  I think this error was a sign and I should have found other things to do.  Like clean my house!!  The block was well over 12"!!  Ay carumba!!!  

Back to the drawing board...  One thing that I found while looking for an interesting block was the nested churn dash.  It's super cool!!  So, I paid the $2 to buy the block pattern from Quilt Jane (why not let her do all the math?  Clearly I"m not having a day for that)

All afternoon, I felt worse and worse, but kept plugging away... Note to self- If you aren't feeling well and aren't thinking clearly--STOP.  Look at the yellow!!!  I didn't see the MASSIVE errors until this morning!!  I can't live with that, so I will make corrections (or start over?).  What did I do?  I think I was referencing the wrong measurements for the half square triangle?  or didn't trim it up?  What a mess.   This poor little block tote-- I haven't even started the tote part!! =(

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Slow and steady wins the race?

Things are busier than ever and my free time is so minimal.  I have been able to sneak a few bits of sewing in here and there.  

I really want to finish up the Elephant Parade, but it's crawling along.  I re-made the blue flowers from the old style to the new one.  The scale seemed 'off' and I'm pleased with the results!  I have a few sashing strips sewn on (not pictured here).  The frog and turtle eyes are next up and then I can hopefully have a completed top.

A few years ago, I started making string blocks of green, blue and purple as a way to use up some scraps. The plan is to put them into a twin sized quilt and donate it to Project Linus.  Yesterday I had a mess of green scraps on my cutting table (in addition to orange and pink!!)

It seemed like a good opportunity to sew up some green string blocks!  I made four yesterday, which brings the running total to 12 blue, 12 green and 8 purple. (not the latest group photo and the new blocks are much more vibrant than in this photo!)

Why were my scraps laying out on the cutting table?  Because I emptied the scrap containers to bring for Show and Tell at my guild meeting.  

Why?  Because Amanda Jean was the speaker!!!  Woot!!! So.Much.Fun!!!  I'm a mega fan of her style and it was a fantastic talk and trunk show!  She signed my copy of her book and I treated myself to a few copies of her patterns. 

The last thing I have to share is a cute little basket I made following a tutorial from Hearts and Bees.  It went together very quickly and I'm hoping to make more!


Sunday, September 13, 2015

Super Sunday Stash!

Quilt Expo was this week and it was all kinds of fun!  I did some serious stash enhancement.

I took this meme to heart and bought tons of fabric!

Some big splurges!  I bought two fat quarter bundles- one in lime green, grey, white, black and another in soft blue-grey and blue.  I'm thinking of making an equilateral triangle quilt with the lime greens and a simple modern squares + rectangles with the blues/greys.  I got the blue/grey fabric from Pincushion Boutique.

Nancy's Notions had Bali charm packs on sale for $5.99!!  Two made it home with me! I got several grey fat quarters from Graphic Impressions.

At the Gamill booth, I stocked up on a new panto, grey and white Omni thread, and an Omni thread card.  The last big splurge was on 2 more dies for my GoBaby!  A 1" hexie and an equilateral triangle.  Of course there were a few more goodies here and there...

I can't wait for some free time to cut into the new fabric and use the new tools!  I took pictures of the exhibit quilts and will (hopefully) share some of my favorites in another post.

Linking up with the Fabulous Molli Sparkles!