Monday, July 21, 2014

WiP - Diversity

I'm still bouncing all over the place this week, but at least I have some finishes to show for it! And some new skills to boot.

I quilted and bound my sister's Christmas tree skirt, and bound Central Park Sudoku. Making bias binding wasn't a new thing, but attaching it in a circle was. And it wasn't that hard!

Then I practiced a mitered border on a little panel piece from my husband's grandmother's stash. It worked okay...

...so I went ahead and put the mitered border on my Wee Wander quilt. I'm so glad I learned the technique, because this is perfect. Straight borders wouldn't have cut it with this amazing border print.

I finally - finally - finished cutting my MIL's Ripples and Reflections, and made the first block. I'm keeping track - 1 hour to sew, 41 pieces.

And since working with Christmas, modern fabrics, 80s fabric, novelty fabric, and batiks wasn't enough for one week, I started one with homespun-style flannels.

When digging through Grandma's stash, I found two pillowcases with a design and her name and her husband's. And then I felt immense guilt because I've had the denim from her husband's jeans for three years and haven't made her a quilt yet. What kind of person puts off Grandma's quilt??

So I whipped together a plan, dug out these flannels from a kit, and got started!


And in between all this, I cut another neutral jelly roll for my vacation sewing. This is a new one to me - Plaster of Paris - that's very Grunge-like. The real jelly roll is California Girl, bought during my husband's last deployment. Fitting that I should work on it during this one!

Oh, yeah, and my Weekly Churn Dash. This is just a Joann's print, nothing special, but I love the pattern of the white dots and the random blue flowers.


And the design palette of the week! Orange, and I love the matching Kona names. {Photo courtesy of the EPA. Really!}

Linked:
BOMs Away Monday @ What A Hoot
Design Wall Monday @ Patchwork Times
Color Mondays @ Porch Swing Quilts
Linky Tuesday @ Freemotion by the River
WiP Wednesday @ Freshly Pieced
Rainbow Scrap Challenge @ SoScrappy
Scrap Basket Sunday @ Kim's Big Quilting Adventure
Fabric Frenzy Friday @ Fort Worth Fabric

Monday, July 14, 2014

WiP - Flimsy Finishing

The month of doing whatever continues, with a bunch of finishes!


First, I finished off the Christmas tree skirt for my sister. Waiting on a backing decision, and I'll probably quilt this at home so I can take it east with me.


Then my aunt made a decision on her final border and I finished up the Tennessee Waltz. And it was totally the right decision. This one will be quilted on the longarm, so not for a while yet.


And lastly, I ordered Wee Wander as a deployment gift for the kids, received it on Wednesday, and whipped it into a top by Sunday. Okay, it's not a complicated top, and it still needs to be trimmed, but I really enjoyed fussy cutting the adorable kids.

I'm going to miter the fabulous border, which I've never done. Debbie {A Quilter's Table} suggested Amy's Creative Side's tutorial - I've read it and I think I'm going to try on something smaller first. I don't want to mess up my lovelies!


And then there's my Weekly Churn Dash. The Dude and I bought this fabric during an Oklahoma Quilt Shop Hop a few years ago. He has pretty good taste.

Jennie {Porch Swing Quilts} is starting a palette linky. As it is Rainier Cherry season out here, I have one red thing on my brain. {Photo courtesy of Rainier Fruit Company.}

And finally, I cut 2.5" strips for a jelly roll quilt while I'm on the East Coast. Jelly rolls are easy travelers! This one is Hello Luscious by Basic Grey, with the cream Grunge from the same line, and it will become Avignon Picnic.

Of course, all these finishes leave me wondering what to do next...

Linked:
BOMs Away Monday @ What A Hoot
Design Wall Monday @ Patchwork Times
Linky Tuesday @ Freemotion by the River
WiP Wednesday @ Freshly Pieced
Rainbow Scrap Challenge @ SoScrappy
Scrap Basket Sunday @ Kim's Big Quilting Adventure
Fabric Frenzy Friday @ Fort Worth Fabric
Color Mondays @ Porch Swing Quilts

Monday, July 7, 2014

WiP - Doing Whatever I Want

So... I deliberately didn't take on much work this summer because it's my first one with two kids. Turns out, that was a really good plan, because now I'm also solo parenting for the summer.

So I have officially declared that I'm doing whatever I want in July. If I want to add things to my UFO list and not check anything off - fine. If I want to do Christmas in July - go for it. (As is Sew Lux, Fort Worth Fabrics, Quilt Story...) If I want to slice off part of my thumb...oops.


Case in point. Inspired by Winding Bobbins and using Sew Crafty Jess' measurements, I ran a rotary blade right over my thumb. Okay, that might not be their fault.

But anyway - my start on my sister's Christmas tree skirt. Which is adorable and doesn't have any blood on it...thank goodness.

And since there was a little too much desert khaki in my life last week, I pulled out some fabrics I got out of the Cozy Quilt's sale section. They were leftover from a applique quilt, and random sizes, so I ran a couple quick calculations and made an Ohio Star/Nine Patch/Irish Chain baby quilt.

I don't have any reason for it, and I'm not going to be quilting it any time soon, but I hung it up on the railing and the bright colors make me happy. And CC loves to hide behind it for sneak attacks.


And of course, my red scraps always make me happy. The real challenge this month is to not use all Sandy Gervais Valentine's fabrics.

Linked:
BOMs Away Monday @ What A Hoot
Design Wall Monday @ Patchwork Times
Linky Tuesday @ Freemotion by the River
WiP Wednesday @ Freshly Pieced
Rainbow Scrap Challenge @ SoScrappy
Scrap Basket Sunday @ Kim's Big Quilting Adventure
Fabric Frenzy Friday @ Fort Worth Fabric

Friday, July 4, 2014

Halfway Through 2014 Review/July Goals

I was just going to do a quickie Finish-Along round-up for the last three months, but since it's halfway through the year, it seems like a good place to stop and take stock.

For starters, major life changer:
After almost 2.5 years in process and two years since referral, the Little Man finally came home. He's been home almost eight weeks now and things are going well. He still won't speak English other than CC, no, out, kitty, and ammo {in reference to Nerf gun darts...thanks, Dad.} But since the lack of communication is our only complaint, we're doing really well.


I got a half marathon PR in the beginning of the year, which means all the rest of this year's can just be "finish at any time." Woo! Which was definitely necessary in Portland and Seattle.

In sewing, I've completed 12 quilts.
Three customer quilts - T-shirt QuiltVera Bradley QuiltT-Shirt Quilt
One start that wasn't on the UFO list {that was actually completely done from scraps} - Pretty in Pink
Five already-started-and-stopped UFOs - Chunky Log Cabin / Four Patch Frenzy / Skorca! / Cat Tails / Flirt Marks the Spot
Three projects that I already had planned and purchased the fabric - Road to Oklahoma / Owl Always Love You / Goodnight Monkey

I also made some table runners and wall hangings and some more table runners and an ironing board cover and did I mention the table runners?


And I finished off some tops to join the neverending "to be quilted" list. {And other ones got quilted, but they're close enough to finished that I'm just ignoring them for now.}

How's the list looking? Still pretty bad...but there's more crossed off than added, I think. I won't be quilting as much this summer, since quilting will cost me babysitting fees as well. My plan for July is to piece whatever the heck I feel like, whenever the heck I feel like it. It's summer.

Orders
Chevron Baby Quilt - pieced, awaiting quilting
Vera Bradley Stars Quilt - finished!
Witch Table Runner - quilted, hand-stitching binding
Wedding Quilt - waiting for the blocks to be sent back
Christmas Tree Skirt/Stockings - due Dec. 2014
Tammy's Running T-Shirt Quilt - finished!
Lori's Running T-Shirt Quilt - finished!
Tennessee Waltz - added 5/14 - pieced to borders
Celtic Love Knot - added 5/14 - planned, awaiting fabric choices
Space Twin Bed Quilts - added 6/14 - awaiting pattern choice

Awaiting Binding
Christmas Stars
Heart Table Runner - finished!
Frolicking Pinwheels 1
Ornament Table Runner
Postage Stamp Table Runner
Sunkissed Pillow
Four Patch Frenzy 1 - finished!
Central Park Sudoku - my AYOLF goal for July. I even have the binding, so it's probably a total cheat, but whatever. It'll definitely get done.
Reverse Heart - added 2/14 - finished!
Striped Table Runners

To Be Quilted
Leftover Bunting Quilt
Christmas Sampler
Baby Owls finished!
Toy Story 1

Partially Pieced
Rainbow Scrap Challenge 2013
Four Patch Frenzy 2
Frolicking Pinwheels 2
Log Cabin Shoes

Polaroid Quilt
Strip XOs
Woven Snowmen
Cat Flying Geese
Cars
Toy Story 2
Little Dude's foster mother's Road to Oklahoma - finished!
Bedtime Monkey - finished!

Just Needs Borders
Flirt Marks the Spot - finished!
Bonnie & Camille Spin Cycle {and justifiable, waiting for Miss Kate's release to finish}

Block of the Month/Week
{as in, I will be piecing it throughout the year with no hurry to finish}
Rainbow Scrap Challenge 2014


Planned
{as in, I already own the fabric & pattern}
Coffee panels and yardage
Lone Star
Pez Schnibble

Voila Pumpkin Kit
Trip Around the World
California Girl Double Hourglass - this one, and Luscious, are my Something Old goals for the month. I know - how can they be old if they haven't been started yet? I've had both jelly rolls with a planned pattern for two years, so I think that qualifies. And I'll be visiting family for two weeks, so what's easier than a couple jelly roll projects?
Hello Luscious Avignon Picnic
Mason Jar quilt
Homespun + Jeans
Star Wars Pixelated

Scrap Project
{as in, scraps that are partially pieced in some way and enough to make a mini or pillow, or there's enough that I can get another entire quilt out of it and am therefore unwilling to separate them...}
Civil War Scraps
HST Joy Scraps
Winnie the Pooh Scraps

Sew Cherry HST Scraps
Fairy Scraps
Saturday Sampler '11 Scraps
Pink Hunter Star Scraps
Blue Hunter Star Scraps
Steelers Scraps
Flirt Scraps

Small Project
{already in some stage of production}
OU/OSU Bunting
Crayon Rolls
Car Organizer

Red Suede Purse
A ridiculous number of pants that need hems or elastic repaired
Ironing board cover - finished!

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Running T-Shirt Quilt - Finished!

Haven't I written this title before? Like, recently?


Well, I guess that's what happens when you run, you have a running buddy, and you belong to a running club...


And this one is for my running buddy, Lori. And it broke my heart right there to cut up the Princess and OKC and Disneyland Half shirts. Those were OUR races! Sniffle.


Of course, I quilted in hidden Mickeys again.


She's a photographer for a travel magazine {Islands} and picked up the backing in Hawaii. She also mails me little stacks of Hawaiian fabrics every time she's there, and I'm hoarding them {and the backing scraps} for a Hawaiian quilt for her 40th birthday, which we're celebrating by running a half together in Hawaii. And more importantly, this happens before my fortieth...hahahaha!


Talk about a missed opportunity for shirt designers - a Superhero half with this shirt?


I really pushed for a different binding, but darn it all if she wasn't right. This same one was auditioned for the last t-shirt quilt and was far too red-violet. Here, it doesn't appear reddish at all and works perfectly.


The border is Christmas fabric - Laurie Wisbrun's Brrr. Sssh, don't tell anyone!


I also made her a pillow from the back of the Philly shirt. It was her first half, and it was too big to go in the grid, so it deserved its own little spot.

All photos are courtesy of Lori. Isn't it nice to see professional quality photos for once?


Okay, here's one from me. CC got kicked off the quilt while we were rearranging the blocks. She was pouting. Everyone say "poor, poor CC. At least the Little People animals still love you."


Monday, June 30, 2014

June - The Roller Coaster Month

June has been an interesting month - lots of ups and downs.

My husband was supposed to go on a short trip, but ended up shredding an engine and being stuck in Guam for nearly two weeks. {He had three other engines to land with. Clearly this was not an emergency. I like denial.}

Since this was a mere 20 days after getting home with the Little Man, I was going slightly insane by mid-month. Not to mention, no "babysitter" = no long arm rental time = delay in finishing a customer quilt.

But woo - the up! A customer quilt!


A running t-shirt quilt - and I think I did a fabulous job. ;) {My AYOLF goal.}

I also ventured cautiously into the world of branding and hired a designer to do my logo. I'm slowly working toward understanding my Facebook page and blog as a business. Don't worry - it'll take all summer.


I also finished a t-shirt quilt for Lori - just a sneak peek, full post will be Friday. With professional photographs! {Because I mailed it to her.}


Worked on a Tennessee Waltz for my aunt - the first border, an "extension" border is done. {My NewFO.}

Kept steadily cutting Ripples and Reflections. O.M.G. So much cutting! I thought I would cheat and just cut step 1, but so many of the steps overlap pieces. I need one Fabric 4, Piece B, for Step 1, then four more in Step 6, and the last three in Step 10 - or something like that. So I need to cut everything...and I really don't know how to organize it.


Put extension borders on Summer Drinks. I wasn't sure on this, but I think it's the perfect way to finish it off.


Finished the star blocks for Cardinal Charms and started piecing the rest of the quilt. I laid it out and thought about making more star blocks {six seems paltry} but I really like the 10x12 layout. So I'm sticking with it.

{And yes, the colors will be spread out. Just threw them on the design wall/floor to check layout numbers.}

Since we're halfway, here's six months of Churn Dashes. Not too many darker ones, but this month is red, so there will be some darker tones added. Overall I'm really happy with these!


Oh, and I made a skirt! A very simple maxi skirt, but I followed instructions. And my fabric wasn't stretchy in the same direction as the instructions. So my waistband had no stretch...plus I measured after eating pasta, so everything was just a little off. ;) I ended up sewing a casing, picking out the side seam, and putting in elastic. Little extra work but it fits fine now! And the foldover waist hides the extra stitching.


There was also school finishing and national park visiting and half marathon running and lion feeding and inappropriate dam joking. You know, summer stuff.

Linked:
BOMs Away Monday @ What A Hoot
Design Wall Monday @ Patchwork Times
Linky Tuesday @ Freemotion by the River
WiP Wednesday @ Freshly Pieced
Rainbow Scrap Challenge @ SoScrappy
Scrap Basket Sunday @ Kim's Big Quilting Adventure
Fabric Frenzy Friday @ Fort Worth Fabric
A Year of Lovely Finishes
Fresh Sewing Day @ Lily's Quilts
NewFO @ Cat Patches

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Running T-Shirt Quilt - Finished!

So, this is a pretty fun finish. I was contacted by a Marathon Maniac/Half Fanatic to make a t-shirt quilt from her mostly-Disney race shirts.


{Sorry...we had a limited window to take pictures and the weather didn't cooperate! I did not want it touching the wet ground and the wind was a pita, as you can see below.}

I tried to space out the Disney shirts as much as possible. She also wanted the sleeve logos of the parks - which actually helped the layout design when they could go on the sides or tops or bottoms. Sometimes I need something skinny to fill it out!


I also had to piece two shirts into bigger blocks. The Berlin one was harder than I thought. The Indianapolis one just required picking out the side seams to preserve every last centimeter. Sometimes I wonder if race directors ever consider the needs of the future quilt designers! ;)

I pieced blocks with her MM/HF numbers. Random fact: she's called a "Double Agent" and I don't believe those are numbered, though they ought to be.


I quilted it with loops, some stars, and a few hidden Mickeys. Because why not? After consulting with the longarm rental ladies, I picked a steely-blue-grey that blended with most of the shirts.


The backing is a purple chevron and the binding is a tiny purple floral I had in my stash. I wasn't sure how well anything would look considering all the colors in the quilt, but I think the binding worked!

And of course, both cats were involved.


CC from the beginning {and most steps in between.}


And Tycho tested it out at the flimsy stage.

Quilt Details
Fabric: t-shirts {notably, they are all technical t-shirts}
Backing: purple chevron flannel
Binding: no selvage info
Size: 52x72"
Pattern: my design {I print 1/10 graph paper and puzzle it together}

Also of note: I am still working out the details, but I've started pulling together a page with t-shirt quilt information. I contacted someone to make a logo, started saving receipts, and will be making slow changes to the blog over the summer. Figured it was about time I started acting like a business. :D