Sunday, May 19, 2013

This weekend...

Friends, this weekend was an explosion of awesomesauce. You think I'm joking? Try starting off Saturday morning with tater tots covered in homemade white cheddar cheese sauce and bacon, then hopping in the car for a quilt retreat thingiemabob! And if that wasn't enough, coming home to a clean house and folded laundry and my loving family. Yep! That's what I did this weekend!

K, my friend and quilty teacher came with me on the retreat, and we spent 10+ hours quilting between yesterday and today. It. Was. Awesome.

First, K's work:

Snails Quilt

Geometrics Quilt

Tons of Cutting for the Chili Peppers Quilt (Not sure if everyone calls it that or just me.)

And some FMQ practice.

The butterfly blocks were a team effort. (Isn't this block amazing? K's mom designed it!)

We relied on our friend, the chocolate Teddy Graham, to help us power into late night sewing territory. (And by late night, I mean 10pm.)

I made a few things too: 

Lots of cutting. R 6/7 for the 10" Tula swap and fabric for two kidlet quilt tops.

Block 5 from TP's City Sampler...

...and block 6.

Start of a new kidlet quilt. Three blocks down, six to go! These blocks finish at 16.5".

And a paper pieced lone star for Sarah from the Make It Modern Bee. 

This weekend was quite possibly the most awesomest weekend ever for me. It really was a lovely weekend, and it was so nice to get so much done. 

I know that was a lot of photos, but I wanted you all to share in my awesome weekend! I hope you had a lovely weekend as well! Tell me all about it in the comments, okay?

Friday, May 17, 2013

Blogger's Quilt Festival

I feel like picking a quilt for the BQF is almost like picking a favorite child. I almost went with my latest finish, Mr. M's Owl quilt, but I decided instead to go with a quilt I made just for me, Le Mille.

Using leftover HST units from a snowball quilt, I pieced this bad boy together for a Tula SAL last fall, but with holiday sewing, a cross-country move, and life in general, I didn't finish it until this spring.

But when I did, oh la la! Love! This is my snuggle quilt, and it makes its home on my favorite chair. When I'm feeling generous, I let my husband snuggle under it with me.

Full disclosure: trimming the 300+ HST units was awful. Keeping them in order while I was sewing rows was awful. But the finished product? Totally worth it. 

If you'd like more details, please visit the original post.

Quilt Stats
Name: Le Mille
Size: 50" x 58" 
Fabrics: Tula Pink's Parisville line, Bella Solids in Jade; Backing is a print from Patty Young's Heaven and Helsinki line and a print from Laura Gunn's Cosmos; Binding is Bella Solids in Jade
Quilting: Straight line quilting in solid stripes; FMQ flower in center bullseye
Started: September 2012
Completed: March 2013 

I'm linking up to the Blogger's Quilt Festival hosted at Amy's Creative Side.

FF: Owl Love!

Last night, I finished the binding on Mr. M's Owl Quilt. Woo!

Several weeks ago (meaning this quilt is horribly overdue) my good friend B asked me to make a nap quilt for her son. Since he was the recipient of my very first quilt, and is kind of a super important kiddo to me, I was happy to oblige, but really, what to make him? 

I started this quilt with the owls fabric that is in the center of each log cabin and on the borders, and I had originally intended to use it in a much different design, but after cutting the fabric and test piecing a block...well, let's just say it was the right call to switch to log cabins instead. 

I FMQ'd a stipple and some loops in the logs and also outlined the owl. Seeing that owl framed by loops and stipples on the backing makes my heart giddy with glee. It might just be my favorite part of the quilt, which is admittedly a little weird, but whatever makes you happy, right?

The binding is scrappy using up the leftovers from the logs--I was shy two inches, so I pieced in some black as well--and the backing is classic chevrons in black and white. Did you know the chevrons now come in flannel? We knew we wanted a flannel backing, and when I researched what flannel options we had available, this bad boy came up, woo!

Now, to get this quilt to Mr. M for snuggling enjoyment! I'm linking up with TGIFF with Ms. Midge and Finish It Up Fridays at Crazy Mom Quilts.

This was a part of my Q2 Finish-A-Long list, woo! 

Saturday, May 11, 2013

A bunch of blocks.

Three Tula Pink City Samper blocks down, ninety-seven to go!

This is block 1 from Tula Pink's City Sampler: 100 Modern Quilt Blocks. Yes, I will be making all 100 because I'm crazy ambitious. (Or maybe just crazy?)

Block 2.

And block 3! It's really exciting to me that one day these 6 1/2" squares will join forces to become something truly huge! My strategy--if you could call it that--is to make the Gridlock quilt pattern in the back of the book using the rainbow palette. I'm trying to stick close to the colors in each of Tula's blocks to make the layout easier at the end. This is not terribly original, but it is a lot easier, especially when dealing with such a large quantity of blocks! As for fabrics, I'm using my hoarded Tula fabrics, plus solids, and scraps of shot cottons and batiks, and any other fabrics that I love and look like they'll work, like the Oliver and Co print above in block 2.

Because I keep forgetting to post these bad boys, here are my May Sisters' 10 BOM blocks. After the tedious HST blocks of doom that were April's assignment, it was nice to do something simple like learn how to make hourglass blocks. They're not perfect, but for a first shot, I'm pretty stoked.

Question of the day: have any of you worked on a crazy huge sampler quilt? Farmer's Wife? Dear Jane? TP City Sampler????? Please tell me about your experience and if you finished the quilt, etc. as this is a total first for me! 

Friday, May 10, 2013

FF: QBB Quilt.

Hi Friends! How is your Friday treating you? This week, I finished sewing up my Quilts Beyond Borders quilt, and I'm hoping to drop it in the mail later today! (They're still looking for another 100-150 by June, so if you can help, contact them. I'm going to try try try to fit another into my schedule.)

Backing is this turquoise and brown print with a smidge of the brown and white polka dot as I didn't have enough. I'm almost out of that polka dot print, and it will be a sad day when it's gone.

Quilting was straight lines through both sets of corners. I finally convinced myself to quilt both diagonals, and I love it. (Of course.) This quilt is so simple, but it's so happy and cheerful that I love it for its simplicity.

One of the requirements of QBB quilts is that they have to have machine-sewn binding. Since I typically handsew one side, I practiced on two other quilts before giving this one a shot. Of course, I practiced a zigzag stitch binding on those two, and I only had Agatha and her straight-stitchin' ways, so I gave another method a shot. It wasn't bad, but as you can see in the pic above, there were a few spots where I sewed over the binding by accident. (Oops.) I keep telling myself that one day I will rock at this. That day is not today, but I am getting better!

I was so close to having a second finish this week (the owls quilt!) but I wasn't able to get the binding done. Next week, Friends...

What have you been up to this week? I'm linking up with TGIFF and Crazy Mom Quilts. You are too, right?

Sunday, May 5, 2013

SS: Happy-Go-Lucky Edition.

This showed up on my doorstep recently. Besides getting to make awesome blocks, the Make It Modern Bee has some other special perks like being entered in totally awesome fabric drawings. (Thank you, Fat Quarter Shop!) Ready for a photo-heavy post? Of course you are!

Can I tell you what I love most about this line? These are so...usable. I tend to go very graphic (Tula, anyone?) with my fabrics, and several of the prints in this line will be perfect accompanying pieces with the bigger bolder fabrics in my life. (Pssst...the navy prints are my fave!)

And since I wasn't already having a good stash week, a friend gifted me these delicious hot pink handled pinking shears because she knew I didn't have a pair, she saw them and thought immediately of me, and she wanted to get me a small something to say good work for my half-marathon. Some days, I'm pretty sure I'm spoiled.

Did I mention I'm linking up with Fiona at Finding Fifth for Sunday Stash? Because I totally am.

Friday, May 3, 2013

FF: A skirt and a quilt top edition.

I have been a busy little bee. 


This This is the second tutorial I've used that made me an elasticized box. However, if I wear a long shirt, I think it mostly works. The girl I work with said it looked cute, so she was either being kind, or it really is acceptable, but still! Urg! Rude! How could that tutorial fail me? I had such high hopes, only to be dashed by boxy end results! One day, I will find a skirt pattern that works. I will not be defeated!

Quilt top!
I'm really quite excited about this one, especially because we had a very rough start. I do love me a good log cabin. Yum yum! I've got all sorts of fun FMQ ideas...we'll see if they materialize or not.

I'm linking up with TGIFF, which is at Textile Diva this week!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

WIP: Dress Edition.

This week, I started working on my dress for my sister-in-law's wedding, eep! Perhaps this wasn't the best event to jumpstart my dressmaking career, but it does seem like a typical Audrey move. "Oh, I have a really nice wedding to attend! Why not try to make a dress for the first time? Because that sounds like the greatest idea ever!"

The above reads like sarcasm...and it kinda sorta is...but I'm also kinda serious....

I'm making the Jamie Dress by SisBoom, and I've finished everything except the bottom hem and the strap attachment. Because my fabric (Anna Maria Horner Innocent Crush in voile, yum!) is so sheer, I opted to fully line the skirt as well as the bodice, meaning I had the audacity to make a change to the pattern, which seems like crazy talk to me because what the heck do I know about sewing dresses, let alone, pattern-modifying? (The answer is nothing, Friends. Absolutely nothing.)

There have been some really really really (times a kajillion) frustrating moments, but they were all of my own doing. I nearly gave up when I sewed my basting stitches yesterday before attaching the lining fabric to my skirt. Then, I nearly cried when I ripped everything out, attached the lining, sewed another set of basting stitches, and got halfway through the gathering only to have my thread snap. Oy vey, people! Dressmaking is hard!

I'm sure it doesn't surprise you that I went for a pink zipper. The zipper assembly was fairly simple, and while it's not *perfect*, it's close enough, and that's all that matters to me! I doubt anyone is going to come up to me at the wedding and say, "Your zipper isn't inserted perfectly. There is totally a millimeter of error right here." And if they do, I will stab them in the eye with my fork or stiletto heel, whichever is more convenient.

I need my dear sweet husband to help me get the straps figured out since I think that will be too much for me to do solo, but otherwise, this dress--for good or for evil--is in the bag.

I'm linking up with WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced. I hope to return to regularly scheduled quilty programming next week!

 WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced


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