Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Baby Jane

Oh my goodness. I can't figure out how I survived my "downtime" without quilting, but I think I'm making up for it these days. I had the annual "New Year's Resolution: FINISH all WIPs" moment like I'm sure ALL quilters do... and then, I nearly have! I was looking around my sewing space today and realized that I barely have enough unfinished projects to cover my design wall and sit in my machine! **insert maniacal laughter here** Yes, that is an accomplishment around here. :)  

So up first to enter the blog-o-sphere is this little number in Cosmo Cricket's Baby Jane fabric line for Moda. Very gender neutral. Very vintage adorable fabric. I just need the baby to go with it. HA! 





I love the motion this quilting design gives it.








And this one is in the shop since I don't have the perfect baby for it. Then again, when did I have time to quilt with babies around?

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Coasted out.

Back in September I broke my ankle playing volleyball. I came down on someone's foot which was well under the net. Sometimes in life you get punished for someone else's mistake. But I assume I'll eventually be fine. Though almost 4 months later I'm still limping. (On a side note, do not break your ankle. It takes 6-12 months to heal. No one has time for that. haha!)

But a broken ankle makes for little sewing (or anything else for that matter). I couldn't even leave it down sitting in a chair. But I'm slowly getting back to my usual self. Very, very slowly.

I can't even tell you how frustrated, bored, etc. I was as an invalid with four children. Especially the 2.5 year old twin boys. But grandma swooped in to save them and me so we survived. :) 

And for a couple of projects while out of commission, I managed to make some coasters. It's funny how just finishing something, anything, makes me feel better. So I took some pictures today of my tiny accomplishments.







Have a happy stitching day!!

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

New year, old projects.

It seems that each new year we take stock of life and evaluate our accomplishments and failures. Some decide to try to make changes with lists of resolutions. And the crafters? We have piles of unfinished projects that we look around at and realize it's been another YEAR and we still haven't gotten them out of the UFO pile. STILL!

Well, that list seems to be ever evolving but some of my projects have been on it for multiple years. Don't worry, I won't list them for you. Or even show them to you. That would take a LOT of photos.

So I'll start this year's blogging by sharing one project that I've been working on for the better part of a year already that hopefully will see a completion in the next few months. 

Hopefully. 

At this point in life you'd think I'd know better than to be hopeful about quilting projects getting finished. 


But I thought it deserved a share at the completion of over 200 blocks. 201 to be exact. Just need 41 more and I'll have enough for a king size quilt. It's all scrappy and happy and is the "rainbow rows" from the #apqquiltalong2015 pattern. So close to finishing. 

So close. So far. Still a lot of work before this one is ON MY BED! Can you imagine? I've never made myself a bed quilt. My kids all have quilts. But a king still seemed like a lot of work and time and commitment. Good thing I picked a super quick project. HA! not. 

Wish me luck finding some time to finish this one! 
I love it even from this picture. :) 

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Texas Hill Country Quilt

One jelly roll of Cotton and Steel Basics, a bit of yardage, some time, a lot of deliberation, and a "few" stitches later...

You get a quilt that belongs in the Texas Hill Country! 

This one is being gifted to a wonderful family we have been friends with for a long time. And they just bought a "ranchette" a few minutes west of Austin. We just spent the weekend out there with them and seriously, "Ahhh, beautiful." is all that I can say.


The shadows highlighting the quilting from the back.  


Rattlesnake print backing. Appropriate, no? Stitches, and more stitches.



I opted for a medallion like quilt again on this one. 



One more picture.

Monday, June 15, 2015

"Figuring" it out as I went.

I'm convinced I'm not the only quilter that purchases precuts without a plan. 

Case in point: I picked up a charm pack of "Figures" by Zen Chic for Moda at Quilt Festival.

And I would love to know how many start the quilt without an end game. 

I did this time. 

I made nine-patch blocks with white centers.

Then I stared at them on the floor all lined up in a grid (I like to create obstacle courses for people trying to get in and out of the room... ha.).

And I stared. It just didn't do anything for me. 

I kept staring for weeks. 

And weeks.

And I found something else to work on. (Lots of other things.)

And then after a while it just smacked me. 

Set it around a hexagon in a squares and equilateral triangles layout.

Easier said than done. 

I'd never calculated anything like this. 

And I've not done much with Y-seams in general. 

They are a bit time consuming and little more tedious than lining up the usual points in a quilt, but it was exciting to try something that stretched me a bit. 

 And the centered "medallion" aspect makes it particularly pleasant to me. 


I didn't want the middle to be a "boring piece" with too large a gap in the design and no focal point so I re-engineered a star into it. 

The center star actually required me to rip apart two of the nine-patch blocks, but the whole thing required 40 charm squares and some background yardage. 


And to further accent the medallion aspect, I did irregularly spaced concentric circles for the quilting. 


Pretty sure I traced every circular object in my house... to get it started in the right direction. All of the lines past the first circle of blocks had to be echoed around the inner circle using the markings on the walking foot because I couldn't find any larger circles to trace. 


And of course I chose a large scale print for the back like I always do... well, almost always. 

No absolutes here. 


It finished at about 39" x 39". 

Friday, June 12, 2015

Daydream

The only goal for most people in doing anything is to find more time to spend doing things that make them happy. Quilters neeeeeeed more time to quilt. There will never be enough hours in the day or years in a life for most of us fabric addicts. Maybe some people have their addictions under control. 
I do not. 
I like diet coke. 
And fabric. 
And apparently books and gardening and volleyball and piano and kids. 
Oh and science. ANYTHING nerdy and genetics/physics/chemistry related totally gets me going. 

I fully admit it. I'm an addict of MANY things. 

But if I could combine enough of them together and multitask my enjoyment I could create the most productive and efficient enjoyment machine for my life. I could sit in a garden drawing molecular models in my quilt designs sipping diet coke watching volleyball on television (no volume) while the children frolic through the plants nibbling berries and licking popsicles to classical music. It'd be awesome. And then maybe I could find time for the mundane cleaning and laundry type activities that seem to fill up entirely too much of my life at present. Hello sippee cups. And trips to the potty (Potty-training twins is a blast... said no one ever.). And endless dishes full of food that wasn't even touched. (No wonder my parents just took us to McDonald's.)

But constantly trying to whittle a little time from each of the necessary activities of life to make a little time for a hobby has kind of turned into a game. For instance, if I can get these dishes done while making dinner, flipping a load of laundry, and helping a kid get their homework done, I can free up at least 30-60 min that night for something else. If I do them sequentially I won't even finish today. One day when the kids are all grown I will probably find myself multitasking my hobbies. And then I'll miss the sippee cups and everything else. :)

So I'm sure a few loads of laundry and dishes have had to sit a few extra hours so that I would even have quilts to share on my blog. 

How do you find time for quilting? 


This little baby quilt is in Kate Spain's Daydream fabric line for Moda. 



I quilted a different texture pattern in each of the continuous negative space sections. Quilting multiple designs in a single quilt is so much more entertaining. I highly recommend you try it. You could get a new addiction! 




It could really use a name. I was thinking something along the lines of "party streamers." Any thoughts?



It measures 32" x 36" and is in the shop

Friday, March 6, 2015

Sloops

Sloop /slüp/ noun : a one-masted sailboat with a fore-and-aft mainsail and a jib.

About a year ago I started this project for my biggest little man. I designed and constructed it just for him from one of my all-time favorite fabric lines - Salt Air (by Cosmo Cricket for Moda). It fits his personality perfectly and he LOVES it. In fact, he's been loving it almost a year now. 

And it took a LOT of love for me to let him have it once it was complete. A queen-sized paper-pieced quilt in lovely fabrics... and he still occasionally has bedtime accidents. It's a good thing he's cute.

And it's about time I shared it on the blog. This seems to be the two hardest parts of quilting for me lately. Photos and journaling. Oh, and I'm sure you'll notice the fish pillow with clamshell pattern I made for him too. He jumps on it. Yes, I love him very much and he's very very cute. HA!

But back to the sloops. 


The paper-pieced little boats are offset to emphasize the equilateral triangle design and create continuous visual lines on the diagonal across the quilt.



And you can have one too if you like. Pattern here and here.