Sunday, June 30, 2013

Tula Pink City Sampler - Blocks 4-6

In May, I made a big deal about the fabrics I was going to choose for the Tula Pink City Sampler Quilt Along.  I made blocks 1-3 and really felt stuck when I went to make the fourth block.  I let it sit for a while and made other things.  Then I had a chance to complete my Prince Charming FQ set by swapping fabrics through flickr.  (I love that collection but there seem to be a fair amount of people trying to unload theirs- for me, I regretted not just getting a bundle when I had the chance!).
So, I've decided to adjust my color scheme to include the Prince Charming and Salt Water collections.  It's rainbow-ish, multi-colored, and lots of stash fabrics play well with the two collections:
Here's block #4:

Block #5:

Block #6:

And here they are all together.  I thought I might have to redo blocks 1-3, but I am thinking I can probably get away with keeping them.  It will look more balanced as I catch up with the rest of the group- I am definitely behind with the pace of the quilt along.

Thanks for reading!

Friday, June 28, 2013

Fabric Friday: Super Kids

It felt like Christmas yesterday when some Super Kids fabric came in the mail.  I received the awesome opportunity to make some special projects with these that will be featured on Ann Kelle's blog sometime in August.

This fabric makes you want to be a kid again, no?

Including a girl's line is pure genious!

And on another note, here's the obligatory Bloglovin' button I needed to include within a post at some point.  I would love it if you'd join me:
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Thursday, June 27, 2013

Pillows for Charlotte

As you may remember, my sister is addicted to cross-stitch and she keeps sending adorable pieces my way for my kids.  She arrived home for a summer break visit last night - so I knew I needed to do something with her creations because I always never procrastinate.
I think making pillows with cross-stitch is nice because my children enjoy the tactile experience of the pillow.  Hanging it up (framed) in their room, where they only go to sleep, is not as fun. 
So here is the owl piece, framed with a big floral print from the Joel Dewberry Heirloom collection from my stash.  I actually did free motion quilting to outline the flowers and leaves but you can't see it in the picture.  The whole time that I was quilting the front, I was like, "Why I am I doing this for a one year-old?"-- but it was at least good practice.

Now, I am told that a Disney Princess obsession is inevitable for most little girls.  We aren't there yet but I think she will appreciate this pillow for a long time.  I used another stash favorite - Remix by Ann Kelle. 

I have to admit that it took me a little while to figure out how to frame each rectangle to end up with a 16.5" square for the 16" pillow form.  I hate quilt math - but luckily it's not as hard as college algebra (which I nearly didn't pass!). 

Here's Charlotte with her pillows.  Not the clearest picture but it's cute!

Besides the pillow, I have been working on a project that involves crazy nine-patches.  These bocks are fun and quick.  This is a "test" set I made- and it was good that I made myself practice because I messed up the order of the blocks while I was sewing - so not all of the 9 fabrics are featured in each block.  I am not sure what to do with these samples but I think it was worth it to try out the technique before I cut into the bigger project.  Do you ever do a "trial run" when you sew?

Thanks for reading!

Friday, June 21, 2013

Fabric Friday- Retrotastic!!!!

I found some awesome yard sale fabrics last Saturday. 
 Over one yard of this awesome mushroom fabric:

a huge piece of this sweet yellow flannel, I already have plans for this:

I need to make an item of clothing with these ladybugs for Charlotte asap!

 2 yards of a canvas material floral:

Finally, I got a lot of useful, more plain types of fabrics including lots of shirting (there's a quilt in an antique quilt book that I must make asap - if anyone has shirting that they want to trade with me - please let me know!), some quilted fabric that is great for lining bags, and muslin.  I also bought 4 brand new pillow forms.

It is actually kind of rare to stumble upon decent fabric and other sewing supplies at yard sales that I will actually use- so I was pretty pleased with my haul.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

WIP Wednesday

Lots of cutting going on for my participation in both the Tula Pink and the Anna Maria Horner Charm swaps going on over on flickr.  I hate cutting - it is my least favorite part of the quilting process but I guess it's a "necessary evil."  What's your least favorite part of quilting?

I feel like I might lose some readers if I keep blogging about my X Plus and Crackle blocks - I feel like a broken record (hmmm.... how long can I keep saying that until people stop understanding the reference?)  I promise that next time you hear about these- it will be to showcase the completed tops.  I am so close!  Only 18 more X Plus and 40 Crackle left to go!

Yard sales last weekend were awesome for crafty finds - I stumbled upon two stashes of former quilters.  I will save my thrifted fabric finds for the end of the week, but I figured I would share this handmade little dress shirt that already has been worn by Charlotte:

Isn't it so sweet?  I am not sure if it was ever worn because it is in great shape.

Oh!  And check out this post on Ann Kelle's blog regarding the upcoming release of her Super Kids collection.  She listened to my suggestion to make superhero stationary she'd designed into fabric!!!!  I almost fell out of my chair when I saw the post.  It's pretty cool when designers listen to their fans.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Fabric Friday

Thanks to everyone for the kind comments on the last post.  Here's a picture of the completed top I put together.  It's a little different than the original layout:

Today I made some quick pillowcases for a new grad:

About a month ago I won two $25 gift cards to Quilter's Way for my entries into a completed UFO challenge at the Chelmsford Guild.  I couldn't believe that I won twice - it totally cheered me up.  I am pretty sure that was the day that my son plowed into an old lady when he was riding his bike at the park.  I was going to wait until there was a fabric that I "really" needed to use the gift cards but when I saw that there whole store was 20% off today I decided to not wait.

I also had an awesome fabric score recently in finally finding this Tula Pink Birds and Bees bundle on Delrayfabrics.  I thought it was a typo or some sort of mistake when I saw Pam had this for a really great price so long after it was released.  I have been obsessing about this line for a while - debating if I should just go for a few half yards here and there and thinking about Superbuzzy having a bundle for nearly $100 (!).  Pam even partially refunded me some shipping by stuffing it all into a flat rate envelope.

So I am going to start doing a "Fabric Friday" post on this blog - just to talk about fabric whether it be a recent stash addition or an old favorite.  It will be a lot like the "Sunday Stash" posts of the blogosphere.  I hope you understand that I am not trying to brag or flaunt my fabric stash or purchases.  I stick to a certain budget and enjoy getting deals and swapping sometimes too.  We all have our guilty pleasures.

As a blog reader- I love it when people post pictures of their fabrics because I simply find it interesting to see what other people are excited about.  I also find it helpful to see actual photographs instead of the screen shots provided by the manufacturer.  And as my blog header says, "Sometimes I distract myself from buying fabric by sewing with it." I am trying not to take myself or this blog too seriously.  Actually, this blog used to be constant pictures of fabric and my family and friends would tease me that I didn't write a sewing blog - it was just a "fabric blog."  SO- WIPs and finished projects will continue to dominate this space with a little break for eye candy on Fridays.  I hope you will join me!

Now I am back to all of the Liberty X Plus blocks- can't wait to see this one to come together eventually!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Quilts for Boston

A few weeks ago I asked my husband to please take our kids to Scouts so I could attend a Quilts for Boston sew-in.  The sew-ins are on Wednesday nights and he always has Scout commitments on those evenings but I felt so eager to help out at least once and take some things home with me.  Natalie has received over 1800 blocks and there is A LOT of work to do!
Once I got to Quilter's Way- I was told to just sew away and that's what I did.  It wasn't the largest space and there were a lot of people -so I put together the top pictured below in a very improvisational way.  If the sides matched as the same measurment- I sewed them together and I trimmed when it wouldn't effect the design of the block too much:
I was able to grab a bunch of blocks to bring home with me and I enjoyed putting together this top at home recently.  I added sashing to make the quilt larger and help with any trimming issues.  Aren't these blocks so wonderful?  Of course I had to grab the dresden plate.  I have a new favorite everytime I look at this.

I had to fight Alice to take some quilted tops home to bind.  I have not quilted a quilt in a while and I actually miss doing bindings!  It's so relaxing - especially when you get to the hand sewing part.  When my husband gets home from work- I will have him hold these up and I will add pictures to the flickr group

Now this is on my design wall and I am busy trimming and adding to- to put these together.  Everyone's 12.5" is often a little different but it's really not been that bad and I just love the look of all these different styles and fabrics jumbled together.

It's been quiet lately because I caught a nasty summer cold but I am finally feeling better.  Thanks for reading!

Thursday, June 06, 2013

Tag Along Pattern

Thanks for being excited with me about my thrifting finds.  I failed to take a picture of the attachment to the table that can be used for piecing, ironing, and whatever else you want to put there.  It's one of the best features of the table!  But look at the little shelf on the bottom (under the machine) - that is really making me feel cramped when I sit to sew - maybe I can take it out?  We'll see.

I finally finished something!  It's called a "Tag Along" by This and That Designs- I bought the pattern at a booth when I went to MQX a few months ago.  It is a very late birthday present for my cross-stitch addicted sister.  I sent her a link to the Happy Go Lucky collection and she approved - so I ordered a charm pack.  I love this line - there's not a print that I don't like.

I used other prints from my stash to complement the charm pack.  Here's the outside.  The project requires a big piece of peltex to make the tote very sturdy:

Here's the inside:

I think using vinyl for this project is genious - it intimidated me a little to work with as well as installing a zipper - but it went smoothly.  Actually, the most challenging part of this project was attaching the binding - it has a lot of layers to deal with and go around.

I like that the left pocket is big enough for standard printer paper - my sister only buys cross stitch patterns that you print online and it's nice to have a good place to store them.

Patchwork Please also has a version of this project that I may try or at least consult to make my own custom version of this project again soon.

Monday, June 03, 2013


I scored a serious jackpot at yard sales over the weekend.  The first treasure I came across was two curtains made out of Amy Butler wallflower fabric!  The person simply cut off the selvages and sewed on two sides - so making the fabric usable is going to be very easy.  It ended up being four yards for $2!
I also found an awesome sewing table for $25.  The person had bought it a year ago and hadn't used it.  When I came to the sale, another lady was hemming and hawing about buying it and I was just waiting with anticipation to see what her decision would be.  I almost waited until she had left (she was indicating that maybe she'd come back at the end of the day) - but I finally said, "I don't want to interfere or make anyone feel bad, but I am happy to buy it."  The other customer seemed relieved and wasn't put out at all.

The only person who ended up feeling a little put out was my husband.  He didn't appreciate returning from an hour plus drive after a somewhat sleepless night camping with our three year old son to go to a yard sale to pick up an item he felt I didn't really need.  I tried to show him what a good deal it was - it's still on sale at Joann's and was $162 over the weekend- but I am not sure if that did the trick.  Oh well - I have to say that I am thrilled.  It's the kind of thing that I never would've splurged on at the store but I LOVE it!  And my previous sewing table was on loan.  Here it is in my sewing space:

I also picked up this gorgeous hand-embroidered pillowcase for $1.  I love stuff like this!
Lastly, I finally found a cotton dress for Charlotte that I will eventually cut up to make her birth announcement wall-hanging (like this one that I made for her brother.)  So many cute clothes are made out of material that you wouldn't want to sew with and/or it might be too pricey or cute to ruin eventually.  I also had to find something with pink in it.  I finally found this at Kohl's and with a few sales in my favor, it came home with me for only $4.  Booya!  Next time you see that plaid - it will probably be as pieced hexagons.

Thanks for reading!