Wednesday, January 30, 2013

WIP: Busy, Busy Edition.

January Block - Lucky Stars BOM

Le Mille Quilt - Basted

Low Volume Charms - Beginnings of a New Quilt

There's not much text today--still unpacking and reorganizing and cleaning from our big move!

I'm linking up with Building Blocks Tuesday at Quilter in the Closet and WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced. 

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Liebster goodness!

Hi Friends. I know it's been awhile since we've talked. Don't worry, I've missed you too. I'd like to blame the lack of quilty goodness reports on my broken camera, and my inability to remember to borrow my husband's i-phone when the light is natural, but there is also another reason. I simply haven't had any time to quilt, and rather than inundate you with nothing posts, I've kept mum and worked on cleaning out my house instead. (That did involve re-organizing my sewing closet, and now it's all organized and happy.)

However! Would you believe that I received the Liebster Award? (And that this happens to be my 100th post?) And because I am a happy recipient, I not only get to answer some questions and tell you some fun things about myself, but I also get to award eleven other people with this awesomeness! Aoife at thREDhead was sweet enough to honor me with the award, and now I'm passing it on to some other peeps. (PS-If you haven't visited Aoife's blog, do it. It's good stuff, and she's super sweet. I mean, SUPER sweet.)

These are the questions Aoife sent me: 
1) If you could try out any craft other than stitch-y things, what would you do?
I'd love to get into jewelry-making. Not anything complicated like the maille or sequin/bead work some of my very talented friends do (you know who you are) but I'd love to make really simple stuff, and probably just for me. For instance, I love these earrings, and I'd love to have the skillz to sit down and churn a pair out.  

2) What's the reasoning behind your blog's title?
I have a serious love relationship with hot pink. For years I struggled to try and be something I thought people would like--owning up to the fact that I liked pink, and even going so far as to dye my hair that very color? Well, that was my first big step into being myself. 

3) What was the first music album you bought?
That's a very tough question. I don't actually remember. It was a cassette though, I can tell you that. However! One of the first CDs I purchased was Jimmy Eat World's Bleed American. (This was when it was still called that--then 9/11 happened, and they yanked the title.)

4) What would be your dream job and how is that different to when you were a kid?

I wanted to be Nancy Drew. I also wanted to be a beret-wearing artist because I thought berets were cool. I think I asked my parents for a beret for Christmas for most of my early life, and did I get one? No. (And that is why I have problems--my mom and dad didn't love me enough to buy me a beret. I am so just kidding.) I have two dream jobs! One, I'd love to make money from quilting, and two, I'd love to be a world-famous young adult writer.
5) If you had time and money, where in the world would you choose to go visit?
I want to visit Australia! I've had the pleasure of visiting the UK and Japan, but I'd love to see Sydney, especially when it's cold and snowy here. Though maybe not right this minute since I hear they are dealing with flooding and bush fires.

6) Do you have a new sewing technique you want to try out and learn this year?
I've decided that 2013 is the year when I get really really good at paper piecing. (2012 was the year of HSTs, and I think 2014 will be the year of curves.) I've signed up for the Lucky Stars BOM so I can improve my skillz and get lots of practice. 

7) What is your all time favourite movie?
You've Got Mail. I have seen it over 200 times. I watch it whenever I'm sad or stressed or mopy or bored or lonely, and my poor husband knows it always cheers me up and calms me down, so he's probably watched it at least 50 of those times with me. Poor, poor man.

8) If you could get rid of one chore from your life, what would it be?
I have two diaper-wearing kidlets, so you think this would be diaper duty, but it's not. I hate cleaning floors. Sweeping and mopping are all sorts of awful, and because of those two kidlets, I am constantly having to clean my kitchen floors because of food detritus.

9) What is the greatest source of creativity for you?
Bloggers! I love reading up on other people's adventures, and I find it especially exciting that I have the opportunity to learn about people from all over the world. I also have a couple of real life crafty friends, and they always provide encouragement and ideas too.

10) What are you most proud of in your life?
Maybe all moms say this, but I am proud that I am a mother and that I take good care of my kids. I love those kidlets something fierce, and while I didn't easily transition into motherhood, I am happy that I am a mommy and that I have the opportunity to raise up these boys to be something great. (Because they are great. And if you disagree, I suggest you don't vocalize it, or it will get ugly.)

11) What thread-related project are you working on right now!?
Project? Singular? I wish! Right now, I'm quilting my Tula quilt. Also in the quilting queue is my HST quilt and my triangle mini.  

Eleven (Random) Things About Me: 
1. My husband and I are high school sweethearts. (He was my very first boyfriend.) We started dating my senior year of high school, and we were married a month after I graduated from university.
2. My parents owned hamburger restaurants when I was a kid, and I grew up behind the counters. My father (who is a really amazing cook) would take me to restaurants and make me critique the food. At the age of 18, my father asked a chef to come out of his kitchen to listen to my thoughts on a dish and how it was different from another version I'd had. (It was all sorts of embarrassing.)
3. I have a short story and a poem published.

4. I watch a lot of Korean dramas even though I do not speak Korean or have any ties to that beautiful country. (Coffee Prince fans, represent!) I just started Greatest Love

5. I used to be a bit of a hypochondriac. I'm still working on it. 

6. Before I was married, my full name meant the Noble Princess of Eternal Light and Power. 

7. I hate snow, and I hate being cold. If I had a kajillion dollars, I'd buy a beach house in a millisecond and stock it with the ingredients for pina coladas. (So make sure you're nice to me if you want an invite.)

8. I have my degree in English--Creative Writing. It has done nothing to land me a fancy job, but I have never regretted that decision. I loved my field, and if not for kidlets, I would have pursued an MFA in Creative Writing. 

9. For a year, I played an MMORPG called Dofus. I liked it a lot, but then I had kids and no time, so I stopped.

10. I think I am the only person alive who has watched Downton Abbey and didn't like it. There! I said it out loud. (Please don't stone me!) The characters are just SO mean to each other, and I spent each episode I watched so sad and depressed and miserable. It is better that I don't watch it. 

11. I went to see High School Musical 3 in theaters. On the day it released. With my friend Jenny who is older than I am. I love me some HSM, and I'm not ashamed to admit it!

And, the eleven people I am passing the award to?

1. Sarah at Saturday Sequins
2. Sarah at Stitching and Bacon
3. Ange at Heart of Charnwood
4. Fiona at Finding Fifth
5. Jamie Lee at Busy Bee Quilts
6. Josh at Molli Sparkles
7. Erin at The Lazy Quilter
8. Sarah at Duck Egg Threads
9. Darcie at Clover Quilts
10. Jen at Quilter in the Closet 
11. Alia at Card Table, Inc.

My Eleven Questions:

1. Is there a book or movie that has changed your life or greatly impacted you? What is it? 
2. What is your favoritest color? 
3. What is the best job you've ever had? 
4. Do you have a new year's resolution or word of the year for 2013?
5. What is your favorite thing you've ever made with your hands?
6. Where is the coolest place you've ever visited? 
7. How many WIPs do you have? (Be honest.)
8. What is the hardest crafty thing you've ever done? 
9. Did you conquer it? 
10. What is the hardest non-crafty thing you've ever done? 
11. Did you conquer it? 
PS - Here are those rules for the Liebster award: 
(I totally stole this straight from Aoife's blog. Forgive me, Aoife!)

1. You must post 11 random things about yourself.
2.  Answer the 11 questions given by the nominator.
3.  Create 11 new questions for those you nominate.
4.  Choose 11 new blogs (less than 200 followers or blogging for less than 6 months) and link to them in your post. (Will those I nominate please leave a comment on this post with a link to your Liebster post so I can learn more about you? Thank you!!)

Thanks for nominating me, Aoife! This was super fun, and it was a huge honor! :) 

Saturday, January 19, 2013

First Bee Blocks

With all of the unpacking in my life--it NEVER seems to end--I haven't gotten much sewing in these days. I did squeeze in some time for my bee blocks because those are a commitment, and therefore, I have to make room for them, right? Right? I'm taking it at permission to neglect the dirty kitchen and pile of stuff in my living room, woo!

Wonky Log Cabin for Kelie

I made this block using this post's instructions. Our move back also coincided with my camera's complete meltdown. One day, it just stopped working, which really is quite a tragedy since an i-phone is hardly going to increase my photographic abilities. For instance, the blues in the above are actually more turquoise-y.

I had a few scraps of that hedgehog fabric left, and I was excited to have something that could use it! I'd never made an improv block like this before, and it was a challenge for me, especially with the first round, but once more layers fell into place, it got easier. Looking at everyone else's contributions, I think this will be a really fun quilt when it's done.

Mama Goose Block for Samantha

This block had an exact design, and a fair number of HSTs and triangles, but it came together easily. I dropped them in the mail today. It's exciting to know that my blocks are traveling to different parts of the country to join someone else's quilt!

Thursday, January 17, 2013


Back in December, I was freaking out trying to get everything packed and holiday gifts finished and mailed off, and it was a scary scary time. Not that now isn't any less scary with all of the unpacking and crazy mess everywhere, but at least there's no finish date looming in the near future. All that being said, I packaged a box of holiday gift goodness, mailed it, then realized I hadn't taken photos of the mini quilt inside.

Photo by W. John MacMullen

This is Deconstruction. I usually don't spend a lot of time trying to discover the "right" name for a quilt. (Case in point, my last big finish was called The Purple-y Quilt.) Originally, I had planned to have it hang another way, but I worried about the balance, and when I turned it this direction, the name struck me, so I went with it. And if its title is totally cheesy and awful, don't tell me. I don't want to know. I'm basking in the creative process, friends! 

Photo by W. John MacMullen

I made this mini for my friend John, who was even sweet enough to snap the finished photos for me. She was made using scraps from my Black and Batiks quilt--there we go again with the SUPER creative quilt titles--and the back was made with other scraps.

This is the only photo I took during the entire process. Photo fail? I think yes.

I quilted each colored section with a different colored thread and a different style. The above is my favorite. Fun random boxes! It was a lot of turning--this was before my darning foot arrived--but I enjoyed it thoroughly. Binding was interesting--I didn't consider until after I'd quilted the entire puppy that I would have to deal with inverted corners. I found a tutorial that got me through the mess, and I'll readily admit the imperfect binding is my fault, and not the tutorial's. Also, I steadily improved, and the last of the inside corners almost looks *gasp* passable. This is the first quilt project I've thrown across the room, though I doubt it will be my last because that's just how I roll.

I think the orange rectangle appliqued on the black fabric is my favorite. This was the first quilt I put together by "playing with" the fabrics, and I used my small (15" x 36") design wall to do it.

Deconstruction was a good project over all. I learned a lot--curse you, inverted corners!--and I enjoyed making it. Best of all, my friend John likes it, which is the most important part, right?

Saturday, January 12, 2013

SS: Center City!

Hi Friends! If you're joining me for Finding Fifth's Sunday Stash, welcome to Hot Pink Quilts! Most of you probably already know me, so I won't write out my autobiography or anything, but you can get to know me better or check out my last year finishes if you're so inclined. (Also, I always forget you lovely Australians (and Brits!) are much further along in the time scheme, so I apologize for the "tardiness" of my post. It's only 10am on Saturday here, I promise!)

I'm participating in two BOMs this year, and while last year's pick-up-fabric-as-I-went-along approach was fun and all, I decided to make my life a bit easier this year by picking up a fat quarter bundle and calling the matter done. Lazy? Yes. But with my big move back to the midwest and a family reunion to attend, I need a little more simple in my life.

I picked up this lovely bundle of Center City by Jay McCarroll with some solids. Isn't it gorgeous? The plan is to use it for the Sisters' 10 BOM. I think this very modern fabric line will look lovely with all of the sharp triangles and the negative space of the suggested layout. Yum! I need to pick out some background fabric. Any suggestions? (White/light colors are off the table as I have small children.) Maybe charcoal? Or a medium gray like Kona Steel? Or should I got totally crazy and do something like the apricot or lime above? Give me your thoughts and suggestions.

Now, it's your turn! Link up your blog posts below, or tell me in the comments what fabric(s) you've picked up lately. Also, have you used any Center City? I'd love to hear (or see!) what you've done with it. Some of the prints I'd love to use for skirts, but that's just getting ahead of myself.

Thanks for joining me today for Sunday Stash! And thanks Fiona, for letting me host!

Friday, January 4, 2013

And there was much squeeing!

Friends, I know I told you I was taking a bit of a break from the blog because I'm moving, will be away from Agatha for a couple of weeks, and I'm visiting my BFF, but yesterday, an email appeared in my inbox that elicited so much excitement, I couldn't wait to share it with you!

Photo is courtesy of Alisa from Knit-Spin-Quilt.

BAM! Isn't it glorious? Alisa from Knit-Spin-Quilt used the quilt I designed for the Let's Get Acquainted blog hop to make her very own Baby K Quilt. Woo! There aren't words to describe how awesomely cool this is for me.

Photo is courtesy of Alisa from Knit-Spin-Quilt.
Doesn't the quilting just look yummy on fleece? I've seen flannel backings, and I've seen minky backings, but I don't know that I've seen a fleece one before, and I love how clear the quilting lines appear.

And here is a picture of my version, just in case you forgot. :)

Okay! Back to vacation. I'm itching to sew, what with two blocks for the Lucky Stars BOM waiting in my inbox, two bee blocks to attack, the Sisters' 10 BOM--which I wasn't sure I'd have time for, but I've decided to give it a go anyway--and this new scrappy trip along shenanigans that everyone seems to be doing. Oh, Agatha! We'll be together again soon!


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