Sunday, May 29, 2011

Two loves

I love to read. I collect public library cards. I have 4 in my wallet right now. Every library has a slightly different selection and you never know what you will find. I get a feeling of well being when I go to a book store or library. As long as there are books, the world will be OK. Half Price Books has an extra 20% throughout the store every Memorial Day weekend. I hit it up this weekend. I usually hit the craft area and the travel books. I picked up a copy of 1000 Place to See Before You Die a couple years ago and have been slowly marking different spots off. My best purchase there was Time for a Chain. I used it to make a solid double Irish chain. It was just a really good book for a classic quilt.
I was very discerning with my choices because I can go a bit overboard. I walked away with only two books which is great for me. Quilt in a Day's Log Cabin for $4.98 plus 20% and Quilt of Joy. Quilt of Joy looks a bit like the quilters version of Chicken Soup for the Soul, but the back cover looked interesting.
So if you are near a Half Price Books this weekend, check it out. Every store has different inventory so you never know what you can find.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Saturday night/Sunday morning Sew In and a workout

I had to get a new set of needles and redo my bobbin. I put in the new needle and promptly broke it. My machine defaults to the far left and the quarter-inch foot I have on requires the middle position. I was so eager to start stitching I didn't change the needle position.

The reason I had to get new needles was my fabric of choice. I am using batiks, Bali Pops actually. It is a gift quilt, but since my family never reads my blog I don't need to keep it a secret. No annoyance there :) Batiks may seem old fashioned, but I love batiks. I love the colours and the feel. Batiks put colours together that wouldn't seem to go and they just work. I have a stack of batik fat quarters that I just look at. This is my first time sewing with them though. The needle I had on my machine was too thick. I switched to a microtex sharp. I had to do some research on needles to figure that one out. Most quilt books/patterns don't say much about needles, but that is valuable information to share.

I have two (basic and cheap) sewing machines. One is in the basement with my ironing board, but my cutting mat is on the dining table upstairs. My other machine is also on the dining table. So this was my genius idea- have two projects going on, one on each machine and get a workout as well running up and down the stairs when I have to have to cut and/or iron. I have the batiks on the basement machine and a string quilt on the dining table. I signed up to walk a half marathon in September so I am considering my sewing/stair workout as cross training.

So here are some pictures of the piles o'fabric laying about.

Saturday, May 21, 2011


Friday Night Sew In turned in Saturday Morning Sew In which didn't happen. Bobbin and needle issues. I have to hit up Joann's. Boo! Hopefully something to post later today.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Some progress and some ramblings

I finally got around to pressing my blocks for the Rural Jardin quilt. I still don't have my design wall, so here are the blocks laid out on the floor. I tossed the blocks in the air to get some randomness and laid them out. I haven't looked at them long enough to figure out if I like it or not. I don't want it to look too red, white and blue. I think I am going to mix up the lights and darks. Or should I keep some order and keep the darks always towards one side?

The third volume of Quiltmaker's 100 Blocks is out and several of the bloggers I follow had blocks. Vickie Eapen at Spun Sugar Quilts had a block that caught my eye. She suggested using novelty fabrics and I immediately thought of fabric that I have been sitting on since Christmas. My niece likes horses and I took a trip to the Fabric Shack and picked up horse-y fabric. It was pretty, but I had no idea what to do with it. I picked up some Fig Tree Dandelion Girl on clearance at my LQS to add to it. If I use this block, I just need to get a solid/tonal. I want it to be girly, but not excessively so. I am leaning towards a green. I will need to audition greens.
I have gone back to some unfinished projects. Memorial Day is just around the corner and I don't have an Americana quilt for the summer. I am using Flag Day Farm to make the same pattern as my Persuasion quilt. I've done all the cutting and I am hoping to piece it during the next Friday Night Sew In, which is a week from Friday.

Work is getting crazy, but I am hoping to keep sewing as a means to keep my sanity.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Bohemian Rhapsody

Is this the real life? Or is this just fantasy?

It took me just two evenings to whip up this throw. I really like the way it turned out. I like the way the brown works with the Fandango scraps. It isn't too matchy matchy nor does it wash it out. I would totally do the wonky log cabin again for a larger throw.

I am naming the quilt Bohemian Rhapsody. Think about it. It will make sense.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Bella Parade

Today was my day the Bella Parade at 13 Woodhouse Road. I adore my solid choices. That sounded conceited. But I do adore my collection of solids.

This weekend I used Bella Solids for the first time with my wonky log cabin. I think I like the texture better than Kona Cottons. It seems thicker and softer.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Best idea EVER!

There has been some negativity towards the 'modern' quilt movement and the wonky block. I wonder if there was this kind of outrage when rotary cutter patterns came out. Anyway, who cares?! Everybody is entitled to their own opinions, especially with a hobby/craft/art form.

I am a beginning quilter so I have no style. I am a pattern follower. I've seen a lot of wonky blocks and wonky log cabins on blogs and wanted to try it out. I don't have accumulated scraps, but I picked up a Moda Scrap Bag a couple weeks ago. The reason I picked it up was because it was Kate Spain's Fandango. I never picked any up when it came out, but I like the quilts that used the fabric.

Last week was kind of rough at work and last night I needed an easy sewing project. I thought I would try the wonky log cabin. Like I said, I am a pattern follower so I used Quilt Dad's Wonky tutorial. The wonky log cabin is the best idea EVER! I didn't have to worry about seam allowance, cutting my strips straight, matching seams. It was so liberating! I didn't go for too wonky; more like, 'that girl can't sew straight'. I think the blocks turned out great. There was some finagling because a couple blocks turned into rectangles. Since it is scrappy and wonky I didn't care. The blocks are smaller than what John showed, but I ran out of fabric. I am going to sash them with brown. The pictures make it look like it is black, but it is Kona Coffee. HA! Kona Coffee. I think I will revisit the wonky log cabin.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Martinique quilt

I don't have a name for this quilt. I want to come up with some beachy name. I love the backing fabric. And of course, Jenny's quilting.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Edit: Some binding this weekend

This quilt came back from Jenny today. I need to put the binding on this weekend. As always Jenny did a great job. Whenever I send a quilt top there is always an accompanying email that makes no sense at all. Somehow Jenny is able to interpret my ramblings and turn it into something I love. She knows what I like.
I don't have pictures, but I was excited and wanted to share.

Edit: Jenny has pictures on her blog. I love this tag team blogging.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

I'm a seamstress

Project Runway here I come! OK, maybe not, but I made my first article of clothing. I made the Audrey Wrap Skirt by Fig Tree. I love my skirt. I have worn it several times already. I finally had pictures taken today. I used Cotton Blossoms by Bonnie and Camille. I wasn't sure about sewing a skirt, so I picked fabric off the clearance rack. I like the fabric and the skirt is completely my style.

Using good quality quilting fabric made the skirt really heavy. If you look closely at the pictures you can see it falls a bit stiff. I did pre-wash my fabric and I have thrown it in the wash a couple times. The fabric is sturdy. I guess I have never paid attention to the fabric in my quilts once washed because it gets all wrinkly with the quilting, the batting, etc.. I am going to make another version with some fabrics I saw at Joann's. It seems a little lighter weight and may give the skirt more flow.

So here are pictures of both sides.

Goal update- April

Updated goals:
2. Finish Martinique quilt With Jenny
3. Piece Flag Day Farm quilt In the heap
4. Get all disciples in Last Supper done Done absolutely nothing
6. Sew one article of clothing Pictures yet to come, but I have already worn it several times. I will comment more when I actually have pictures
7. Continue with Layer Cake Quilt Along I finished the quilt and I LOVE it. LOVE IT. LOVE IT!
8. Start and finish Split Decision quilt On the ironing board. I like the blocks
9. Start and finish Christmas quilt Still in the stash
10. Fig and Plum layer cake something quilt I think I am going to do the Sugar Twist pattern from The Pattern Basket
11. Skinny Strips Quilt using Prayer Flag jelly roll
12. Fresh Cottons jelly roll something I think I am going to do a braid quilt
13. Patchwork Squared Solids Quilt Along I never started and it is so far along I am not going to start. I now have a stash of yard cuts of Kona Cotton.
14. Star Sampler quilt The blocks aren't looking that great in pictures, but it is good practice to work with triangles.