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 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.

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

Monday, June 23, 2014

Weekly Progress - Pieced Borders

So, a quilty question. What do you call borders that extend the main quilt top design? I mean, they're not just borders, or pieced borders. They're different. And I worked on two of them this week.

Tennessee Waltz - finishing out the points from the snowball blocks. TW will probably get another border in the grey.
Summer Drinks - finishing out the quarter square triangles. I think I'm done here. At least, I'm out of fabric!

I also finished a t-shirt quilt.

And quilted a second one.

...but both are just sneak peeks until they have been received!

And did my Weekly Churn Dash. This is one of my mother's old scraps.

And popped the binding on Mom's Halloween striped table runners so I had something to hand stitch while we drove around the Seattle area.

You know, where I ran a half marathon. Not even close to my best time {but also not my worst.} Considering my longest training run recently was...Portland's half marathon. A month ago.

And the boys played in the snow pack in front of Mount Rainier. It's not as dirty as it looks!


Monday, June 16, 2014

Weekly Progress - Relentless Forward Motion

Another week, another husband no-show. Good for top finishing...not so much for the quilting. Which is a teensy bit frustrating since I have customer quilts...another downside to renting long arm time.

But, he should be back soon, so hopefully I'll be making tops into quilts this week! Until then, I'm just trying to see how many tops I can finish before he gets back. ;)

My aunt's Tennessee Waltz is done to borders. I love this pattern so much. Even though I had to fix one block twice.

Weekly Churn Dash - not sure what this was...Riley Blake maybe? Anyway, it's cute and it was in my Rainbow Chevrons.

Backings prepped for the t-shirt quilts. I did a great job matching the chevrons...and didn't even attempt to match the floral.

Since I was ahead of schedule, I pulled out Summer Drinks to see what it needed to finish up. I'm extending the HSTs into the border. Not sure if there will be a second border or if I will call it quits after this.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Weekly Progress - T-Shirt Tops

Lots of good things this week! 

We hit one month since custody, and except for communication issues and frequent 5:30 am wakeups, things are going great. The Little Man and I are working out a balanced schedule, and the Dude is enjoying the playtime as long as I also make sure he gets plenty of private Minecraft time.

Yesterday was also my wedding anniversary, and in true Air Force fashion, we spent it apart. I think out of twelve, we've spent maybe three together? My husband owes me a quilting day as soon as he gets back this week...

...because I finished off two t-shirt tops!

The grid ones go together really fast. Don't be too impressed. {Also, husband is away. I haven't cleaned the kitchen in a week.}

My weekly churn dash. So happy that it's yellow month! This is an older Fig Tree print, I think. It's been in a couple quilts now.

And since I'm ahead of schedule on the t-shirts, I started on my next commission, a Tennessee Waltz. I adore when someone wants my very favorite quilt! {But that means I'll have made two and still won't have one!}

Notice the lovely stack of red/blue four-patches? Made 80 of them before I checked my design. Um, yeah, it's supposed to be the much smaller stack of blue/grey four-patches. But hey! I started the border! Or another project! Yay?


Monday, June 2, 2014

Weekly Progress - Making a New Routine

Okay, first of, is anyone else not getting all their comments emailed to them? I just realized this is happening to me {big sorry to anyone I haven't replied to...and I thought Lynn just stopped loving me!} and I don't know how to fix it. And I have about six seconds a day to reply to comments so I really need the ease of hitting reply!

And second off...ugh, let's just say after this quickie post, I'm off to buy a card reader and a new camera card. Only all the photos since our first trip to Korea. No biggie. Sigh.

So...things are getting a little better around here. We're working out a routine that works for lots of one-on-one play time and some play-by-yourself time that allows Momma to do some work. It usually ends when the Little Man starts "playing" with CC...but I can get some work done in between.

Which means my design floor is now a full t-shirt quilt! I need to do a little color shifting...too much dark there at the top. But it should be stitched together by the end of the week.

I'm especially proud of taking this shirt...
...with its V-neck and badly-placed-logo and cool side stripes and too-slim-for-the-block-silhouette... this!

And I did my Weekly Churn Dash - this fabric is from one of my very second quilt. No picture/link of the quilt because it was long before I thought about blogging.

And these have been coming along as leader/enders as well.


Sunday, June 1, 2014

June Goals

Well, since I got so much done in May...



In June, I have two t-shirt quilts to finish off.

This one for a Half Fanatic/Marathon Maniac. I pieced the last two blocks this morning so tomorrow starts assembly!

And this one for my running buddy, Lori. Lori ordered the grid style, so it should go together fast. We just need to have a debate about how much I love her and might be willing to part with the best fabric ever from Korea.

{And she's going to point out that she sent fabric from Hawaii and kitty fabric scraps. Like that makes a difference.}

Other than that, I have a half marathon in Seattle. No biggie. I run those all the time. :P

And I should really get Ripples and Reflections fully cut and started. Or at least stop cutting in color order and start cutting for the first step. It's a BOM quilt with 11 months of steps and May 2015 is the deadline.

Crud, and something old. Um. I finally found the border pieces AND the top of Summer Drinks, so I can try to throw that together. {I'm totally not going to, but we can pretend for the sake of the linky, mmkay?}

And then other than the Cardinal Charms and Churn Dashes leader/enders, I'm not committing to anything else. Mostly because I need to start {gulp} prepping my lesson plans for sewing classes. You know, when the toddler isn't turning off the computer every three sentences. {WHO PUTS THE GLOWING POWER BUTTON ON THE TOP??}