Wednesday, April 23, 2014

WIP Wednesday: Jacob's Ladder and Cross-Stitch

I am starting work on a Jacob's Ladder quilt, following this tutorial from Blue Elephant Stitches.  It is a project I began, rather weakly, in February, and now I am ready to return to it.  I went to a FRMQG meeting on Saturday and stayed after the sew-in.  I was pretty productive in being able to cut and pair all of the Thangles I needed as well as lots of skinny strips for the 9 patches:

I am also dying to start the FPS pattern, Once Upon a Time (OUAT) sampler, I am just waiting for 2 skeins of the border/outline floss from an online order to arrive in the mail.

At the FRMQG meeting, there was a great presentation on quilt photography.  It was inspiring and I had to try the idea of using foam-core posterboard to create a white background for craft pictures.  This is a picture of the OUAT supplies I gathered:

Not bad, right?  I am also intrigued to try this "free course" about shooting in manual mode with a DSLR.  I will let you know how it goes.

Linking up with WIP Wednesday:

Monday, April 21, 2014

Easter Baskets: Divided Basket Pattern

 Despite my trepidation, I went ahead and made two divided baskets for my children for Easter.  I got in a little bit of a funk this week (missing family and friends back in New England) and used this new sewing challenge as a way to focus and feel better.  Sewing can be a great coping skill, right?!

I used some precious stash: two Laurie Wisbrun favorites.  This year, I am trying to not hold back when it comes to using my favorite fabrics.

The pattern was pretty straightforward and I like their structured look.  The donkey one looks a little better because it was my second one.  I found that using a free-arm is pretty essential to make the top look neat.

Requiring a full yard of the interfacing and fusible fleece is quite generous - expect to have a lot leftover. having such a surplus didn't bother me though, as it meant one less repeat trip to Joann's.

I lined the baskets with some Madrona Road and a nursery line called Little Things.  Aren't those grey raindrops perfect with the donkeys?!

A head cold and a very early wake-up resulted in Nick staying home from church with the kids, so no cute dresses or suit picture this year.

I hope everyone else had a nice weekend and lovely Easter.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Feathers Quilt Complete

The Feathers quilt is completed.  It's the first major project I have completed in CO from start to finish!  I love it and my son really loves it too.  

We took a quick trip to Red Rock Canyon to go on a walk and get some pictures of the quilt.  It was a windy afternoon, but I think we did okay.

I can't believe how dramatic the solids are- it definitely makes me want to make another solids-only quilt again soon.  I used a Robert Kaufman Kona "Sunrise" bundle and lots of Kona Pacific for the background.  It measures 55" x 66".

I quilted squiggly lines in all of the feathers and did some straight line quilting on a lot of the blue background.

My son was disturbed to see I had hung it on the wall but I promised it would come down soon.

I used a little Kona and some Countdown fabric for the backing.  I found some Architextures for the binding.

I am happy I took on a challenge early in the year to do a paper pieced quilt- I am definitely enjoying that technique more and more.

Linking up to Crazy Mom Quilts and SewJo Saturday.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Road Trip Case

I finished the Road Trip Case last night.  I figured out the pleated pockets without too much fuss.  What really ended up being challenging was attaching the double founded bias binding.  It didn't help that my cover fabric was extremely thick and vinyl isn't forgiving at all when you've already sewed through it.  I was mad at myself that it was so difficult for me!  Previously, I have attached binding to three other cases a lot like this, with no problem!!! 

Anyway, I used all stash fabrics- a little Washi, Summersville, Comma, Architextures (binding), and the blue bird fabric is something random from Japan.  Lots of bright fabrics, which was my plan for entering it into this month's Le Challenge.

Unfortunately, it's a little small for the project I had in mind to use with it but my daughter has been carrying it around all day- so maybe I will let her keep it.  It is a really great project and well written pattern for sure.  I think I may try those "divided baskets" (also by Anna of Noodlehead) hopefully in time for Easter.  Wish me luck.  

 photo LeChalleng

Monday, April 14, 2014

Thread, Hexies, and a New-to-Me Serger

Good morning!  I hope everyone had an enjoyable weekend.  We got a lot accomplished and endured a short sickness, nothing too earth-shaking.

I recently completed my Feathers quilt and G. is enjoying it but I still want to take some fun Colorado-esque pictures of to share on the blog.  The weather hasn't cooperated when we've had the opportunity, but I will share soon.  My thread collection increased significantly as I wanted a tone-on-tone look for free motion quilting the feathers.  Very yummy sherbet-y colors, right?

My hexie pillow is coming along - I am not at the stage of sewing eight blossoms together.  I love basting the hexies, sewing the blossoms, but putting them all together is proving tedious.  Maybe I won't be attempting a Hexy MF quilt after all.

Last night, I began the Noodlehead Road Trip Case and have had lots of difficulty figuring out the pleated pockets.  I even had my husband weigh in, to no avail.  I am hoping to figure it out sometime today.

Having moved recently, I have been perusing Craigslist quite often.  We've needed dressers, toy organizers, and other household items.  But I have to admit that I have also been perusing long-arms and sergers too.  All of the sergers in my budget were crummy brands with bad reviews but finally a cheaply-priced Husqvarna Huskylock 905 popped up.  The lady lived about an hour away but actually commutes to the AFB that my husband works at.  I waffled a little about purchasing it: the price was right and there are nothing but good reviews online, but I have to admit that the learning curve of a serger scares me a little. A new guild friend gave me wise advice, "When you really want or need a serger, you probably won't find as good a model for such a good price."  The lady selling it kindly met with my husband at work and he brought it home on Friday.  I will let you know how I like it.

Stay tuned for some finishes very soon!

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

WIP Wednesday: Penny Sampler top

My queen sized Penny Sampler is complete and I couldn't be happier with it.  Because of the large size,I had to lay it all out on my design wall in two sections and I am so thrilled with how balanced the colors are.

 I used all stash fabrics: lots of Lecien Flower Sugar and black and white fabrics, with a few other stash favorites.  I think the low-volume b&w's really tone down the sugar-sweetness of the Flower Sugar really well.

One of my favorite fabrics that I used was a fat quarter I won in a giveaway- it has news headlines and ads on it and it's very random.

Linking up with WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced:

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Fabric Tuesday: Hexies

I have been craving some hand sewing lately and my latest cross stitch project was feeling particularly boring this past weekend.  I decided to start a hexagon project using the 1.5" paper templates leftover from my Little Apples quilt.  Deciding on fabrics took me forever because I wanted saturated colors without completely relying on Anna Maria Horner fabrics.  Turns out my stash doesn't lend itself really well to mixing like-prints with her genious-ness.  I finally gave in and let myself choose lots of her fabrics with one or two Amy Butler and Tula Pink pieces.  

I am leaning towards making a giant pillow cover for that pesky 24" pillow form I have had for ages.  I may have cut too much fabric though- which makes me wonder if I should attempt a quilt.  I love Katy's flower garden (Hexy MF) and would love to have my own version.....  I always feel so torn when it comes to choosing projects: like I've said before, I prefer more time consuming designs but I also know how limited my sewing time is - but isn't it that way for all of us?!  When I participated in a quilt forum with Mary and Marianne Fons a few years ago. someone quoted Gerald Roy as saying, "'Quilt in a Day'?  What's the point?"  I think I will reevaluate after I have made the pillow cover.

Yesterday I started quilting my Feathers quilt.  I am doing some straight line quilting as well as free-motion.  I hope to be binding it by the end of the week.

Linking up with Quilt Story for Fabric Tuesday:

Fresh Poppy Design