Wednesday, April 16, 2014

WIP Wednesday: Hello Again

(Warning- wordy post below!)

Y'all.

It's been over a month since my last blog post.  March was a rough month for me.  My dear, sweet, amazing, brilliant, wonderful grandfather passed away a few days after my birthday and it totally wrecked me.  

One would think that when a 96 year old passes, it couldn't be too much of a surprise.  Well, it was.  He was healthier than most men half his age...until he wasn't.  Then, in the flash of a just few weeks, he was gone.  It was a shock to us all.  After his 95th birthday, I think the entire family breathed a secret sigh of relief; we all were convinced he would make it to 100 just so he could say he had.

I was honored to be asked to share in eulogizing him along with one of his nephews with whom he shared a special bond.  Somehow I managed to put my thoughts into words and not totally break down while speaking at the service in Des Moines.  It was incredibly emotional and when I got back home, the protective bubble I'd been ensconced in with my family burst and I fell into a major funk.  I pretty much slept and vegged out in front of the TV whenever possible.  Unless of course, I was bawling my eyes out.  It seemed like everywhere I went or on everything I watched, someone was talking about or sharing a moment with their Granddad.  

Luckily, some super cheerful fabric along with some super amazing Spring weather helped snap me out of my funk.  Also, the super awesome Sarah from Sarah Quilts had the fabulous idea to start a #FridayNightSewAlong on Instagram.  So, with a little help from my IG pals, my good friend Vodka and that super cheerful fabric, I started sewing again.  I swear, the hum of the sewing machine is not only hypnotic, it's therapeutic.  After a month, I finally got my sewjo back.  Thanks Sarah!

Unfortunately, I haven't had as much time to spend in the sewing room as I'd like due to some family commitments, but I'm hoping to change that this week.  I've decided to temporarily step away from some of the more involved projects I had been working on and focus on a couple quick and easy quilts.

Last year I spontaneously purchased a grab bag of layer cake squares from FQS and finally decided what to do with them when I saw this tutorial by Faith at Fresh Lemons Quilts. 


If that doesn't scream Spring, I don't know what does.  Anyway, those layer cake squares are the super cheerful fabric I mentioned above. They're not of a palette that would normally be my first choice, but they are perfect for a Spring-themed quilt.

Another of my spur of the moment purchases from 2013 was a jelly roll of Barcelona by Zen Chic.  I swear, I love everything Brigitte does.  She's up there with Denyse, Tula and AMH in my book.  I mean...COMMA.  Need I say more?


I started randomly cutting and sewing of Barcelona to strips of Kona Snow and plan to end up with something like this quilt by Kersten @ Frozen Knickers.  But...I think I'm going vertical instead of horizontal.   My plan is to make it big enough to fit the king-sized bed we're getting when we move.  We'll see if that actually happens.

Lastly, my light box kit arrived!  I can't wait to play with it and hope that it helps improve the quality of my pics. Hopefully, you all will start seeing better photos on the blog soon!

Anyway, it's good to be back.  I've been keeping up with Instagram, but I haven't really been keeping up with reading blogs or (obviously) my own blog.  I've missed you guys.  

Have a fabulous week!

Linking up with Lee @ Freshly Pieced
WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

To-Do Tueday : 03.11.14

Well, I'm striking out all over the place.  I can't seem to get anything done!  I did manage to get all the cutting done for the Star Light Star Bright QAL, but I'm still very behind on both that and the Vintage Quilt Revival Block Along.  I just can't seem to get in the sewing room for more than a few minutes every few days.  Being behind schedule sure hasn't stopped me from buying fabric though.  Good grief, I can spend some money!  I'm not even going to pretend to feel guilty though.  I got some good stuff and most of it was on sale. Anyway, more on that this Sunday.


Maybe I'll be more successful in the coming week.  Here's my list.

  1. Piece Star Light Star Bright blocks and top
  2. Complete at least one week's worth of VQR blocks
  3. Stop buying fabric!!!
  4. pack up the china cabinet 
  5. post ads for china cabinet and dining room table & chairs online to sell
  6. work out 
OK, so the last 3 aren't quilty, but they have got to get done!!!


And just because I  like pictures in blog posts, here are a few:

I just pre-ordered this book by Thomas Knauer from Amazon.  Can't wait to receive it!

Swoon Quilt on a dark background!
This Swoon Quilt by lulucarter makes me swoon!  Love the colors!

The soon-to-be-released Moxie pattern by Tula Pink!  Cannot. Wait.


Linking up with Christine for To-Do Tuesday
Red's Needles & Threads

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Sunday Stash : Gettin' Texty With It

Y'all.  I'm obsessed with text prints.  I know I've said it before, but it was worth mentioning again...although probably not necessary after you see my latest haul.  

Clockwise:  Ikea Britten Nummer Fabric; Alison Glass Text in Charcoal from the Sun Print Text Collection; Michele D'Amore for Bernatex Big Words in White on White; Carolyn Friedlander Scribble Notes in Black from the Architextures Collection.


Here is a close up of the white-on-white so you can see the text (please excuse the pitiful photo quality, but it was the best I could do and still get the text to show up):



You may remember from last week that I ordered 6 additional yards of the Architextures print after the one yard cut I ordered arrived.  Well, I've don it again.  I managed to grab  the last three yards of the Britten Nummer print while I was at the IKEA in Charlotte last week.  I swear I almost got into a fight over this fabric.  Some woman stood their and glowered at me while I measured it and then followed me around for awhile...not sure if she thought I would change my mind or if she was planning an attack.  Sorry Lady!  I had to get it while I could since IKEA refuses to sell fabric on line, won't let you order it over the phone or hold it for you even for a couple of hours.  (There may or may not be three more yards on the way from Westwood Acres, I bought out Amanda's supply too!)

I do have a plan for all this texty stuff, I promise.  I have a bunch of Comma scraps left over from this quilt that I made for my Aunt last year.  I decided that Hubs and I need something similar for our house too.  However, my low-volume stash was in pretty dire straits.  The Ikea fabric will be the back and the binding will be the Architextures print.  I think it will make a perfect binding, so I bought enough for several quilts.


Linking up with the fabulous Mollis Sparkles

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

To-Do Tuesday: 02.25.14

I meant to link up to the To-Do Tuesday party last week, but was so in the weeds with life that it completely slipped my mind!  This is definitely a linky party I need to participate in to keep me on task. I just can't get it together lately!  I'm such a ditz and my self-diagnosed A.D.D. has a tendency to kick into high gear when I get overwhelmed.


Yep, that about sums it up.  

I did manage to get my February Vice Versa blocks finished yesterday.




Also, I'm almost caught up on my Vintage Quilt Revival blocks...well, almost.  I goofed on my Red Cross block and started trimming before I was done piecing....and I need to finish the Dakota Star...so, really, I guess I'm not caught up after all!

And we won't even talk about the Star Light Star Bright QAL.  Still cutting.

So...here's my To-Do List:

  • Get as much done on the Star Light Star Bright quilt as possible
  • This week's VQR blocks  (I'll fix the 2 mentioned above later on)
  • Refrain from any fabric purchases no matter how amazing the fabric is
  • Work out (OK, I know this isn't craft related, but I need to get back into my routine!)

That's it.  That's all I'm doing since I've already finished my February Vice Versa blocks.  Wish me luck!  Hopefully, I won't get too distracted by one of y'all's beautiful quilts or some more pretty fabric!

Linking up with Christine @ Red's Needles & Threads
Red's Needles & Threads



Sunday, February 23, 2014

Sunday Stash

I've been bad.  Very, very bad.  I just can't help myself.  I mean, there were elephants involved....and I have a thing for elephants.  My one saving grace is that I actually have a plan for these gorgeous elephants....unfortunately, I have no idea when I'll get to start it.  I'm already behind on everything as it is...but that's beside the point.  Let's just look at all the pretty fabric!

 

Look at those gorgeous elephants!


These are from the Karavan collection by Valori Wells....the first pic includes the Marrakech Blossom print in  Bone, Peacock and Pink.  The bottom print, from the same collection,  is Kashmir in Bone.  And let me just say that those elephants are HUGE.  Like 11" tall...huge.  I knew that when I ordered them, but still.  Seeing them in person, they're soooooooo big!  





I plan on using the Karavan prints with the sari fabric I've been sitting on for months.  The top group I received in a sari fabric swap and the bottom came with the sari fabric I used in the charity quilt I made last year.  I'm very excited about this project and it's going to take all my willpower not to start cutting into those elephants and those pink paisleys.  


I also ordered a yard of the black text print from Carolyn Friedlander's Architextures line.  I seriously cannot get enough of text prints lately.


In fact, once it arrived, I decided to order SIX more yards of it. (I know, I have a serious problem!)  Expect to see this pop up as the binding fabric in several upcoming quilts...just not the sari one.  I also snuck a couple of other prints into that order, so I guess I'll be seeing y'all next week too!

Linking up with Molli Sparkles Sarah @ Mila + Cuatro

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

WIP Wednesday : 02/19/14

It's been another slow sewing week.  I really need to get my act together, but life just keeps getting in the way. (Insert 'woe is me' sigh here).  Other than finishing up my Riley Blake Challenge quilt, I din't get much done.  Sewing isn't the only thing being relegated to the back burner either. Working out has become the exception instead of the rule and I swear my thighs are thickening by the hour. My thighs are the bane of my existence...but who the heck wants to talk about thighs?!?!  Not me, that's for sure.  Also, we are gearing up to get our house "sell ready" and I'm totally overwhelmed... but let's not talk about that either.  

Let's talk about fabric and quilts and all that lovely stuff...but, uh...like I said, I don't have much to show you this week.  However, it will help me avoid nasty things like my thighs and cleaning out closets, so let's do this thing.



As of yesterday, I am only one block behind on my Vintage Quilt Revival blocks.  Hopefully, I'll get caught up later this week.  The last block on the second row was my first attempt at paper piecing.  I'm not sure how I feel about it yet, but I'm reserving judgement until after I've gotten in some more practice.  You sure go through a lot of paper, though.  (But I do really love this block!!!)




I'm almost done cutting fabric for the Star Light Star Bright QAL.  I got really behind when I cut my finger and had a nasty head cold.  It also didn't help that I ran out of Kona Snow and only just got more last night.  I hope to start piecing no later than this weekend.  I think I'm like three weeks behind at this point!


The only thing I've excelled at this week is buying fabric.  At that, I'm an uber-productive champ.  (Or a total addict with no self-control whatsoever.  Depending on how you choose to look at it, that is.) If you follow me on Instagram, you saw a sneak peak of one purchase last night...otherwise, you'll just have to wait until Sunday when I link up with the Molli Sparkles Sunday Stash party to see what I've been up to.


Well I'm off to check out some of the others who've linked up at Freshly Pieced this week before I head off in search of boxes and packing tape.  Gotta start somewhere, might as well start packing while I'm cleaning and organizing.

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced



Friday, February 14, 2014

A Friday Finish: MQG Riley Blake Challenge Quilt

My quilt for the Modern Quilt Guild Riley Blake Challenge- it's finally finished!  I feel like this took forever...because it did.  Not because it was hard or time consuming, but because I procrastinated.  I had the top done shortly after receiving the fabric and then it sat...and sat...and then sat some more.  This girl here?  The Queen of Procrastination.  


Originally, I waited because I couldn't justify yet another fabric purchase for the back.  Then it sat around because I felt like I should do some FMQ...I mean look at all that white space.  But then, after months of doodling, I realized I didn't want to FMQ this quilt...It was screaming "Straight lines!" at me...but I felt guilty about it. I mean, I did just get a brand new mack daddy sewing machine specifically so I could do more FMQ.  So it sat on a shelf in a plastic box for awhile longer.  Finally, I just said the hell with it and busted out the walking foot.  I mean, why force it?  And you know what?  I love it.  Diagonal lines in both directions, 2" apart to create an all-over diamond pattern.


The pattern is the Modernized D9P by Kristy @ St. Louis Folk Victorian.  The MD9P had been on my wish list for months and the minute I got my hands on the fabric, I knew this was what I wanted to do.  

The deal with this challenge was we could use the fat eighths sent to us along with any other Riley Blake print and any solids.



Everything I used for the top is Riley Blake except for the lavender solid in the bottom right corner of the above pic.  That's from a Moda line..the name of which escapes me...and the white background which is Kona White.  In addition to the Riley Blake prints sent, I added a grey print from the Mystique collection and a couple of additional Pop Dots prints from the Hipster line.


The fabric for the back is also from the Hipsters line.  It's the Rain Drop print in grey.  The binding is Riley Blake Medium Chevrons in Navy.  As you can see in the picture above, the diagonals in this print go both ways in the binding...that wasn't intentional, but I love it.  It reminds me of a barber's pole...which is why I guess I'm calling it Barber Shop Pop.  All relevant info can be found here.

Just for fun, I'm throwing in  a pic of what I had to deal with while trying to get shots of this quilt outside.  It's a gorgeous day, but exceptionally blustery.  I had to point and click super quick between trips running to the quilt to straighten it out.  Also, it's warm here today, but we've still got close to 6" of snow on the ground...so I'm sure I looked like quite the moron in my tank top, yoga pants and snow boots.  I'm sexy and I know it...haha, no.  


 Linking up with