Friday, December 31, 2010

Last post

I'm taking a break from my vacation to post one last time in 2010.

A sampling of 2010 projects

As of now, I haven't taken proper pictures of my last projects of 2010.  While in Montana, I completed the LOVE and Artist Palette (aka Solids #1) quilts and made a funky house block for Beth's neighborhood.  I'm hoping to get pictures of the quilts and their recipients later today...the house block was mailed without any pictures taken.

Looking at the sampling of 2010 projects above (see my sidebar for links to them all), I realize that more was accomplished than I thought, but it also reminds me of goals not quite accomplished.

In 2010, I became involved in a quilt guild for the first time, attended my first quilting retreat, participated in several challenges, donated to multiple charity projects, celebrated some blogging milestones and learned some new techniques.  

Looking ahead, I have several goals (as they relate to quilting and blogging) set for myself in 2011.  Mainly I want to stay focused on my ever growing project list...I am easily distracted with all the wonderful creative going ons in Blogland.  
I definitely want to do more charity quilting in 2011, specifically recommitting to AAQI.  Early in 2010 I signed up for their $1,000 Promise, made five quilts and then was distracted by other projects.  I aim to do better this year.  
I would also like to make more progress on Dear Jane, learn needle turn applique, use more of my scraps and selvages, and improve my FMQ.  
As the year goes on, I am sure I will be adding to this list ;-)

Another goal I have set for myself is to engage more with my readers, with blogs I follow and with new (to me) blogs.  
This quilty bloggy community is the best!  
I am inspired by you all; you never cease to amaze me with your creativity; and you do not disappoint when I need encouragement and reassurance!  
Thank you for sharing yourself and your passion for quilting with me, and thank you for allowing me to share a little of myself with you!!!!  

Wishing you a safe and happy New Year!!!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Holiday Zone

For the next two weeks, I'll be doing a lot of this:

and maybe a little of this:

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, Season's Greetings...

See you in the New Year!!!! 


Thursday, December 16, 2010

More Issues

Lately I seem to be having all sorts of issues ;-)  This week it has been issues with my internet.  I'm hanging out at Panera this morning mooching off their free wi fi....and enjoying their hazelnut coffee and a pumpkin muffin.

I put this quilt top in the mail yesterday to my longarmer in Utah.  There is no way I'm tacking this one myself.  My note to her basically says "call me to discuss". 

What color thread and design would you suggest for this?  I certainly have no idea.  The backing fabric is a dark gray, and I'm thinking of a simple black for the binding.  What do you think?

These three blocks have been made into a table runner, and it's even quilted and bound!  
I just forgot to take a picture of it...figures!  

I did take pictures of our guild's visit to a local nursing home we adopted for the holidays.  Here's the quilt I made.  I sure hope she likes it.  You can see more pictures of the quilts our talented and generous guild members' made on our blog post.

Have an amazing day!!!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Some Progress

I haven't been around much lately...
...busy with holiday preparations....
...I'm sure many of you can relate!

I squeezed in some time to work on Solids Quilt #1.

How are your holiday preparations coming along?

Have an amazing day!!!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

The Continuing Saga

of my Adventures in Solids!
I am making (at least) three quilts out of the strips of solid fabrics cut during Sew Day.  For now they are named Quilt #1, Quilt #2 and Quilt #3.  Original.... I know!

I found time the other day to work on Quilts #1 and #2.  
First I double checked my layout of Quilt #1 and marked each vertical column.  I chain pieced all 70 solid blocks (except for the bottom block of each column) for Quilt #1 onto 2 inch strips of Kona White.  I then cut in between the blocks and trimmed them to size carefully keeping them in the proper order.

I worked with one column at a time pinning carefully and really taking my time with each block.   I chain pieced the blocks from column 1 to the blocks of column 2.  After sewing the blocks together, I laid them out and realized I wasn't careful enough.  The top picture shows my mistake.  Can you see it?  

I guess it's only a mistake because of the layout I have in my mind.  Above you can see that instead of sewing the blocks from column 3 to the blocks of column 4, I sewed all the blocks of column 3 to each other and then sewed all the blocks of column 4 to each other.

That is as far as I got.  After I sew the remaining columns of blocks (and rip out the first two),  I will add 2 inch Kona white sashing in between.  This is why the first method I tried does not work....

In between chain piecing the blocks for Quilt #1, I pieced another 20 pairs of blocks for Quilt #2.

I still have a lot of work to do!

Have an amazing day!!!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

An Added Bonus

of belonging to a great quilt guild is the free therapy you receive!  Who knew?!!!
Thanks girls for listening to me gripe, complain, vent talk (and talk and talk and talk) ;-)

During all my talking, I chain pieced 90 pairs of blocks for my Quilt #2.

I thought with that pile of blocks there would be more than enough for a lap size quilt, but 42 more blocks are needed.  Obviously, the layout will change once those blocks are complete.  I just wanted to get an idea of the size.

From the extra solids I ordered, yesterday I finally cut the additional 18 4x6 inch blocks needed for Quilt #1. The rug doesn't make the best backdrop for these solids, but my design wall was confiscated for quilt batting ;-)  It has since been replaced thanks to a 50% off coupon to JoAnns.

Look what I found when going through my Christmas stuff:  my first (and only) hand pieced pillow.  I had forgotten all about the time I took a "hand quilting" class at JoAnn's.  This was years before my first quilt class at the LQS.  I still think I have some of those fabrics in my stash!

Have an amazing day!!!!  I'm off to finish piecing Quilt #1 before my daughter's orchestra concert.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Little Projects

There is only so much quilting I can do at one sitting.  I still prefer piecing to quilting, but I'm sticking with the quilting...even if it kills me.  The entire time I am quilting, thoughts of new projects and ideas fill my head.   It is very distracting ;-)

My Bernina for quilting
You would think I was my daughter trying to avoid homework ;-)  
I rearranged my studio....AGAIN!  
I ordered my Christmas cards...had to figure out a Plan B since my oldest did not make it home for Thanksgiving...hence no recent family photo
Change of address cards were designed and printed...took longer than necessary with my limited PhotoShop experience and printer issues
A trip to JoAnns was necessary to use the 50% off coupon....bought a HUGE bolt of batting.
In between all this some quilts were quilted....partially.

My Janome for piecing.
I moved my Janome into my studio as well.  This way I can easily work on a smaller project when taking breaks from quilting.  Usually my Janome is either in its travel bag, on the kitchen table or on a desk in the laundry room.

This scarf was one of those little projects.  I used a tutorial I printed a while back.  (I'll try and figure out where it's from and post the link.)  This is a quick and easy scarf to make.

The front is made from scraps.  The background fabric is leftover Moda Grunge from Basic Grey that I used in "Quilt #1".  I love this fabric!!!  I need more!  The red is Plume; the green is Nest, and I can't remember the middle fabric's name.

The pattern called for flannel backing, but I used this really soft corduroy I found at my LQS on Black Friday.  I think it is a nice touch.  I tried it on, and it feels warm and cozy!

That's two now from my list I never thought I'd get to ;-)  Not bad.

Have an amazing day!!!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Christmas Spirit

How did it get to be December already?!!!  
In two weeks, we'll be heading to Montana...I am so not ready!

Took from Selvage Blog ;-)

The weather here has turned chilly which is helping with the Christmas spirit.  It is hard to decorate, shop and listen to Christmas carols when the temperature hovers near the 90º mark!  I did some of all of that yesterday (decorate, shop, listen to Christmas music) and even found a little time to sew.

While dinner was in the oven, I played around with making a couple of coffee cuffs.  The above picture shows my first attempt.  I found some coordinated scraps and went to work.  When I finished sewing, I found the perfect button in my box.  The colors match and the "Go green" wording is very appropriate.

This brown and blue coffee cuff was purchased during Craft Hope for Haiti (I was a frequent shopper there).  I purchased two of them (can't find the other one) donated by Anna Michelle Quilts.  I keep this coffee cuff handy in my car for those much needed coffee pit stops ;-)

This black and white one is my favorite so far.  I used Anna Michelle's cuff as a guide for tracing my pattern, but as for the rest, I referred to Terri's tutorial.  Terri's instructions are very easy to follow, and  I whipped up two rather quickly.  For these two, I used fusible interfacing (that's what I had on hand), but don't think the cuffs are thick/sturdy enough.  Next time I will go with something "cushier".  Terri uses velcro for the closure; Anna Michelle used a button and an elastic loopy thing.  I don't have either, so will search them out at JoAnn's when I stock up on batting with my 50% off coupon!

How are you doing with your holiday decorating, shopping, crafting?

Have an amazing day!!!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Wonderful Wednesday!

Christmas gifts I would make if I had time:

1. Holiday Mug Rug, 2. Selvage Christmas Tree Ornaments, 3. quilted scarves, 4. Selvage Pin Cushion Gift, 5. Selvage notebook cover, 6. teachers gifts

Have an amazing day!!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Verna, LOVE

Well, I didn't get a call from school asking me to pick up my daughter yesterday, but I did get one asking me to pick up my son!  This was right smack in the middle of the day.  Then I remembered other obligations... the Book Fair, strings rehearsal, doctor's appointments, etc.

Needless to say, the LOVE quilt still isn't completely quilted....{sigh}

I forgot to show you the yummy Chocolate Lollipop backing fabric.

In between supervising homework and dinner, I added to some old Verna blocks I had on hand.  Hmmm...maybe some mug rugs...or the start of a tablerunner?

Have an amazing day!!!  I'm off to my "chauffeuring" job and then to do some quilting.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Rough Morning

This morning was a rough one.  After two weeks of no school (at least for my daughter), it was difficult to get up and going, but get up and go we did.  I ignored my daughter's complaints of her stomach hurting.  I sure hope I don't get a call from school;-)

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend with a house full of people (18!!!) including my mom and her husband who drove all the way from Mississippi!  Unfortunately, we were missing my oldest.  He lives in a small town a few hours from Seattle, and the icy roads from that freaky "blizzard" prevented him from getting to the airport.  At least he had a safe Thanksgiving and celebrated the holiday with friends.

You probably know by now that I am a procrastinator.  I planned to finish quilting the LOVE quilt over the Thanksgiving break so my son could take it with him (girlfriend's Christmas gift).  Since he didn't come home, this is as far as I got with the quilt ;-)  However, I plan to finish it today!

Amy Butler 

I stay away from the malls the day after Thanksgiving...luckily for me, The Sewing Studio is not near a mall...ha ha!!!!!

It's a Hoot

My Mom and I took advantage of their Black Friday sale...30% off everything!

Soft corduroys and fun fat quarters

I went without a list since I really didn't need anything, but once I got there, I realized there was quite a bit I "needed";-)

My order of solids was waiting for me when I returned home.  Guess I need to stop procrastinating and get to work on my son's quilt!

Have an amazing day!!!!!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wishing everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving!!!!

See you next Monday....

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Random Ramblings

Monday was a play day. Saw HP7 for the second time.  Awesome!

Received my prize in the mail for playing along with Cara and others during Talkin' Tuesday:  a charm pack of Sandy Gervais' Adoring donated by Natalia at PieceNQuilt.  Yeah!!!  Need to add another Christmas project to my list ;-)  Tonight is another Talkin' Tuesday and I hear there will be fabulous prizes donated by Fat Quarter Shop!

Adoring Charm Pack Sandy Gervais for Moda Fabrics

Ordered missing solids needed for Quilt #1.  Preliminary layout is shown on the left.  Details coming soon.  As you can see, my design wall is still in the closet.

Monday was also a work day as I cleared out some boxes from the garage by dropping them off to Goodwill; bought all the ingredients for a fabulous Thanksgiving dinner; prepared the house for guests; and put a dent in my growing number of Inbox email messages.

I'm hoping today will be even more productive.
Have an amazing day!!!