Tuesday, September 16, 2014

To-Do Tuesday

To-Do Tuesday is Back at Stitch ALL the Things!  Wait- didn’t that used to be at Red’s Needles & Threads?  Yep, but Christine has relaunched her website with a brand new look and a brand new name.  You should really stop by, check it out and link up!

I’ve recently come to accept some things about myself.  Like the fact that I will never be a one project at a time kind of gal.  I thrive on chaos and love having all sorts of things going on at once.  I’ve also realized the key to this thriving on chaos thing is to have your chaos (somewhat) organized.  So I came up with a schedule of sorts for my quilting projects.

  • ·         Monday:  F Word Blocks first, then Free Sew
  • ·         Tuesday: Catch up Day (QAL’s, BOM’s, etc.)
  • ·         Wednesday: Ampersand Quilt
  • ·         Thursday: City Sampler Blocks or Free Sew
  • ·         Fri/Sat: Free Sew
  • ·         Sun: Scrap Jar Stars, Free Sew

I have at least 6 UFO’s lurking about on my project shelf, but instead of assigning them each their own block of time, I’ve decided to include Free Sews instead.  That way, I can look forward to working on whatever I want a few times each week, which will hopefully keep me on task with the other things.

This week, my list looks like this:

Unacceptable!  And this isn't even half of it!!!!!

- Organize my stash
- 2 Vice Versa Blocks, if my mind hasn't melted from organizing my stash

- Start cutting squares for Ampersand quilt (900 squares!  EEK!)  You can see a pic of the original quilt by Thomas Knauer in this post from his blog if you don't have his book, Modern Quilt Perspectives

- Vice Versa blocks if I didn't get to them Tuesday
- Bind this quilt

- Continue cutting squares for Ampersand quilt

SATURDAY (if at home)
Continue cutting squares for Ampersand quilt

- Make one Scrap Jar Star

My 4 completed F Word Blocks

- 2 more F Word Quilt blocks
- Decide if I need to add some green to the palette & get it ordered!

- Finish Season of the Witches cross stitch

Bonus Points
- Cut & organize more scraps
- Update collage for blog header
- Decide on a UFO to baste next week to donate

It's a pretty big list.  The only reason completing so many tasks is remotely possible is because I’m currently not working. Chances are I won't get to everything, but as long as I get most of it done, the week will be a success.  If I was back in a salon, I’d be lucky to get a quarter of this list tackled! 

Linking up with Christine @ Stitch ALL the Things

Stitch ALL The Things

Friday, September 5, 2014


Well, I finally finished another quilt.  Christine at Red's Needles & Threads and I decided to tackle curves together with Tula Pink's Moxie pattern. She hasn't posted pics of her finished quilt yet, but you've absolutely got to check out her blog. She's got all sorts of awesomeness over there and she posted a super cool tutorial last week for converting your ironing board to a pressing board!

Y'all.  This pattern is so easy.  It sews up super quick; and the shallow curves make Moxie the perfect project for those of you who are new to curves like me.  Trust me on this.  I was so anti-curve before this project just because I was convinced they would be a total pain to piece.

They're not.

This pattern was very well written and had lots of helpful pics.  You can download it for free on Tula Pink's site here.  Tula's quilt is so wonderful, that I pieced my top using her Fox Field collection exactly as she did.  The only thing I did differently was add a border.  I wanted the quilt a little bigger so I added 3.5" all the way around using the Baby Geo print in Dusk.  For the back I used the Pony Play print in Dusk along with Free Spirit Designer Solids in Aqua.

I quilted it with a large meander.  I'm kind of proud of myself for this.  It's the first time I've ever used FMQ on anything other than practice sandwiches.  There's definitely some herky jerky sharp angles and I ran over my stitches a few times; but finished is better than perfect, right?  Somebody said that about FMQ on Instagram.  Angela Walters maybe?

I've included a few pics of the FMQ mistakes that I decided to just let be. Considering the amount of time it took me to locate them again after the quilt was washed, I'm glad I did leave them as is.  I'm definitely a big "Finished is Better than Perfect" fan now. The only one that popped right out at me was this guy:

So, is it just me or is there an alien in my quilt? "Greetings, Earthlings." (Yes, it's possible I MAY watch just a little too much sci-fi.)  

Herky jerky stop & start

Whacky stitch lengths and some more of the herky jerky

Hello Hot Mess!  I was all over the place right here!

I was so dismayed when I was quilting along because every single stop & start, or herky jerky angle, or uneven stitch length jumped right out at me.  I wanted so badly to stop and rip out stitches; but I soldiered on, trusting in those with much more experience than I that these things would not be so bad once the quilt was finished and washed.

Guess what?  They were right!

If I have more experience and control over my FMQ, I probably would have stopped and fixed some things...except the alien guy- he might just find his way into everything I stipple from this point forward. I kinda dig him.  He could be my "Where's Waldo". ;-)

I made the binding out of the Pointed Lace print in Dusk and love how it sort of looks scrappy, even though it's not.  As always, the quilt is pieced and quilted with Aurifil.  You can find all the details for my Moxie quilt here.

One last pic before I go.  Some of you may have seen this shot on IG, but I couldn't resist sharing it here as well.  This is what happens in my house when you turn your head to answer the other phone while trying to snap quilt shots.

My "assistant", CJ, conducting a very scientific quality control check on the comfort level of the Moxie quilt

Linking up with:
Crazy Mom Quilts: Finish it Up Friday

Friday, August 1, 2014

High Tea at the Bistro

While my goal of finishing 15 quilts this year is severely off track, I do have a finish to share this week.  Actually, I have 2. 

This week my mother-in-law celebrated her birthday.  What better gift to receive in the middle of a sweltering Virginia summer than a quilt?  Right.  Seriously though, I had a full FQ bundle of True Colors and another of Pretty Potent just sitting there next to my one lonely Dowry print just willing me to pet it.  I have to add, I’ve made an effort to bust up my bundles and add them to my stash as soon as I get them.  I’ve done a pretty good job of this, with a few exceptions.  I just can’t bring myself to break up anything AMH, Tula Pink or Denyse Schmidt. 

Anyway, I started collecting AMH with my MIL in mind.  I spent a few days pouring over Pinterest, IG, and my books searching for just the right design.  I wanted something that would really show off the designs in the AMH prints as a lot of them are fairly large.  As soon as I reached for my copy of Vintage Quilt Revival I knew what I wanted to do.  One of my favorite quilts in the book is the Spiced Chai Quilt by Katie Clark Blakesley of Swim Bike Quilt and I knew it was the perfect pattern to showcase the beauty of the AMH prints and would be one my MIL would really like as well. 

I really wish I’d been able to get pictures of this quilt outside, but the weather coupled with the fact that I’m a last minute kinda gal, prevented that.  Maybe I’ll try to snap some in my in-laws front yard next time we’re up there. 

The only modifications I made to Katie’s pattern were to add a fifth row of blocks and a 4” border.  The extra row was added because my MIL is tall.  The border was added because I really wanted to preserve the points on the tea leaves and was pretty sure I’d lose a few of them to binding if I didn’t add a border.  I used Kona Snow, which is the same fabric I used for the background, so it’s sort of like the tea leaves are floating.  The prints in the top are almost all AMH except for 3 blenders I needed to supplement the green and gold tea leaves.  

The binding is Kona Lavender and the backing is this beautiful purple print I picked up at Hobby Lobby because it was absolutely perfect for my purple-loving MIL.  As always, the piecing and quilting was done exclusively with Aurifil.  Best. Thread. Ever.  All the details can be found here.

In addition to my MIL’s quilt, I whipped up a smaller quilt with some of my Giggles scraps and a couple of coordinating prints. This quilt was a companion quilt for Prissy, my in-law’s adorable black pug so they would each have one of their own. 

Now, you may be wondering what this High Tea at the Bistro from this post’s title all about.  Well, it’s the name of the quilt.  My MIL is quite the accomplished home cook. She can cook or bake just about anything you throw at her and she nails it every single time.  My father-in-law has taken to referring to her kitchen as ‘The Bistro’.  In fact, that’s what we all call it.  So….a tea leaf quilt + The Bistro kitchen = High Tea at the Bistro.

Linking up with:


Thursday, July 24, 2014

Finally, Another Post!

I've been meaning to get back into the swing of blogging with one post a week.  Yeah, that's been an epic fail.  I just can't seem to focus on writing an actual blog post.  Let's see....instant gratification by posting pics on IG with cute little hashtagged commennts or sitting down in front of the computer and actually focusing on complete sentences and using correct grammar (well, sort of)??? Let's see.....that's sort of been a no-brainer this summer!

I really need to get back into blogging.  I find that I'm much more productive with my quilting projects (and really everything else!) when I'm keeping myself accountable on the blog.

I have been working on a few projects; two of which are secrets that I've had to hit the pause button on for a few days.  I can't show you much, but here's a peek.

I'm showing these in black and white because I fear the color palette will totally give it away to the soon-to-be new quilt owners! One is chock full of Anna Maria Horner though!  It's all Pretty Potent and True Colors with a bit of my one and only Dowry print thrown in.

Leave it to me to realize just as I'm getting ready to quilt the AMH and finish the binding on the other one that I don't have the right color of Aurifil for the back or for finishing the binding!  Since I've got no place to go buy it locally, I had to quickly place an order and now I'm waiting...

So, what does a quilter do with herself while waiting on the supplies necessary to complete two outstanding WIPs?  Well, she starts another project of course!  (We won't mention the 8 other WIPs waiting patiently in their boxes to be completed!)

I managed to get everything cut for this project and will start getting blocks pieced today. I'm using Deb Strain's Family Tree collection and a bunch of low-volume prints.  II won't say much more since this one is also a gift.  I should be able to make a dent in assembling the blocks since the Aurifil probably won't be here until Friday or Saturday (I hope!).

Linking up Kelly @ My Quilt Infatuation for
My Quilt Infatuation

Friday, July 11, 2014

A Couple of Finishes

I can’t believe it’s been so long since my last blog post.  It’s been a little crazy around here with fixing up the house and a couple of long weekends out of town.  I’m hoping to get back into my quilting groove and start blogging regularly again.

I have a couple of finishes to share this week.  I finished my Schnitzel And Boo Mini Quilt last week, but decided to hold off blogging about it until I finished my quilt for the Modern Quilt Guild Michael Miller Fabric Challenge.  I literally just pulled that one out of the dryer and snapped a few pics on our living room floor since it’s so dreary outside.  (Speaking of our living room floor, please ignore the fact that it needs refinishing- that’s on our list of home improvements, we just haven’t gotten to it yet!)

The MQG and Michael Miller sent us fat eighths from the Petal Pinwheels collections to use in our challenge projects.  The only rule was that whatever we made needed to be quilted.  So, as usual, I made a quilt. I used pieces from all but one of the fabrics provided. I decided I just wanted small pops of color, so I cut up a bunch of tiny 1.5” inch squares, pieced them into strips, and then pieced them together.  I had a ton of gray solids in my stash that I never labeled, so I have no idea what was what.  I decided this was the perfect opportunity to whittle down that pile of anonymous grays.  I know there some Kona Ash and a couple of Dear Stella solids in the mix.  Other than that, your guess is as good as mine.  

The back of the quilt is where I used the majority of different grays. In addition, I used rectangles of the challenge fabric in a strip across the width of the quilt.  I purpposely cut my pieces without using a ruler so they wouldn't be perfectly straight, just for fun.  For the binding I used a baby boy blue solid that was in the same group of unknown solids as the grays.  It doesn’t quite match the aqua in the challenge fabric, but it works.   I absolutely love the look of light blue against gray.  Also, I really need to remember to label my solids. 

I quilted my challenge quilt with straight lines (big surprise, right?) I quilted a grid around the patchwork squares and then did straight lines going in one direction on the portion above that and in another in the section below.  I like the look; it’s sort of an off-center diamond shape with a stripe of a grid.  The quilt measures approximately 41” x 55”.  As usual, it’s pieced and quilted with Aurifil. For now, it’s living on the back of the love seat in the living room, but it just might getting wrapped up soon if an announcement that I think is coming actually gets made!

I’m sure most of you, especially those of you on Instagram, are familiar with the Schnitzel and Boo Mini Quilt Swap. This was my first swap ever.  Let me just say that I had a blast stalking my partner and everybody else who was participating.  I will definitely try to participate if there is another one. 

I was so excited when I received my partner’s info and learned that she loved a lot of the same designers as me.  Even more so when I went through my stash and scraps.  I had a ton of smaller sized pieces that all worked together and that I thought she’d love. I even cut into my half yard stash of my beloved Chicopee that I am reserving for an upcoming quilt.  There’s a ton of awesome stuff in this mini:  Pearl Bracelets, Botanics, Florence, Acacia, True Colors, Dowry, Spa and more!  I measured it before I sent it out into the wild, but of course didn’t note the dimensions.  I want to say it’s about 19” square.

I also wanted to share a pic of the gorgeous mini and goodies my partner Francine (@melrosecakes for you IGers) sent me.  

It's gorgeous, isn't it!  You can't see it too well in this pic, but she quilted it matchbook style.  I've always been a fan of matchbook quilting in pics, but seeing and feeling it in person has made me love it so much more.  I can't wait to utilize it in a quilt of my own someday (soon I hope!).  This mini is going to be hung between the shelving units in the sewing room.  It''s the perfect size for the space and I hope to get it hung in the next couple of days.  Thank you again, Francine, for such an amazing mini and for all the goodies!  

Linking up with

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

And the Winner is.........

 The winner of a True Colors design roll of their choice is..........................................

Pizzaeater, I will be emailing you shortly for your address!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Just a quick reminder

First let me say a big THANK YOU to everyone who linked up to TGIFF last week.  

I had fun reading your posts and looking at all the pretty pictures!  Hosting TGIFF has been a great opportunity for me to 'meet' quilters that I had not had the opportunity to stalk check out before. Looks like I'll have even more blogs to follow now!

I also wanted to remind you that even though the TGIFF link up is closed, you still have time to enter to win your choice of one of these fabulous True Colors Design Rolls!

Comments will stay open until about 8 PM Eastern this evening.  I'll be announcing the winner tomorrow. 

You can click here to enter or check out all the wonderful projects from the linky party.