Wednesday, March 23, 2011

What's Happening in the Quilters World This Week

I found a great quilt as you go - quilt along from last year over at SewTakeAHike .  And since all the instructions are still up and I've never done a quilt as you go project before, I decided to save the instructions and give it a try.

Headed to the fabric store yesterday and picked up some whites so that I could get busy on a couple appliquéd quilt projects.  Another tech. that I've never done before was hand appliqué.  I could still do this by machine, but figured that while watching tv in the evening I might as well be doing something constructive.  Besides, my machine is pretty busy during the day with the other projects.  Hand Appliqué is quiet, relaxing, and the end results are always beautiful.  So this will be another way for me to expand on my creativity and I'm looking forward to the end results of each block.   : )  

I have been working on my "Flying Colors" pattern mentioned earlier on this blog.  I did a quick scrappy block and it went together really easy and quick.  Which is surprising since there are a lot of pcs.  So now I'm working on the actual quilt and have already cut several hundred pcs of the first three colors.  I've got most of those pcs. already sewn together in just an hour and a half.  So like I said, it surprisingly goes together really quickly.  I'll start sharing the process, pattern pcs. etc. next week for those who want to do it as a quilt along.

That's all for today.  

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Flying Colors

Last year a good friend of mine's, Son, gave me a colored pc. of  paper that was folded up into a  paper airplane.  He asked if I could make it into a quilt. I unfolded the paper and said "Sure" this should be fun.  I put the block pattern into EQ6 (I didn't have 7 at that time) and played with the combinations a bit.  All the above and below images are from that same block. Some are larger versions of the block, while others are smaller, but most of the various changes comes just from the different color schemes.  The Green one below, is the one he decided on, without the hot pink - lol.  He said he'd like to keep it in the Ocean greens with possibly a touch of blues.  Thankfully I have lots of greens and so I should be able to start this project soon.
Would anyone be interested in doing this project along with me?  I'd so LOVE to see it done up in the different colors, and I know I would never be able to do all the possibilities of this block.  Leave a comment and let me know what you think.  If there is enough interest, we might make this a quilt-along.

Another Quilt A Long

Thread Head Quilt AlongI ran across another very nice quilt along over at Thread Head - that I just had to share with everyone today.

It was actually a quilt along that started back in Oct. last winter, but isnt this just beautiful!  It looks like a lot of fun and the information for all the blocks are still up so there is time to still do this project or save it for when you have time.  Plus, there are alternative idea's for making this in a table runner, smaller quilt, wall hanging, etc.  For me, I like BIG quilts, so I want to make it just the way the main directions instruct me to.
I'm alway's partial to browns, but unfortunately I am totally out of browns right now, and my budget will only allow me to order or buy locally what I need to finish up some of my other projects that are started.  So I decided that I'm going to try to do this in blues or greens since I have a lot of them on hand right now. I think it would look nice in Green's don't you?

This is Spring?

Friday and again today this is what our weather looked like.
And I ask myself - is this Spring?
I took this photo on Friday. We ended up with about 2" in all Friday.

Then Saturday the sun came out and the snow was gone.  It was beautiful.   I had a very pretty surprise when I saw the first of my little Crocus and other bulbs flowering.  I just had to take some photo's.

So yea, I guess it is really Spring. : )
Today were looking at 3" of snow already this morning and it's still coming down. 
But YAY!  It's spring. : )

Thursday, March 17, 2011

February UFO Completed

I finally finished up my little "Cocker Spaniel Window" wall hanging for my Feb. UFO Challenge.  I had it done in just a few hours, so I really should have never procrastinated on this so long.  
I'm happy with it and love how it looks like a stained glass window and will probably hang it in my office.

Brown Bag Challenge Completed

Yes, yes, it is finally done.  My machine (with a little help) started working normally again and I was able to finish my Brown Bag Challenge in time to submit it for the contest.  I'm just waiting for my sign in information and then I'll be able to upload the photos to the flickr site for vote.  Meanwhile I"m ready to share a couple photo's with you here.  By the way, I named it "Green River". As I was quilting all those little diagonal lines I jumped the green strips and in my mind it soon was being called skipping the green river.  So I guess the quilt kind of named itself.  It is just the right size for my small dining table, but it can be used as a lap quilt on cooler day's next winter.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Spring Mystery

I thought I should give a quick reminder that the Spring Mystery is going on Right Now over at Cathy Carters - Yes Today, this minute, this hour.  The clues are up and ready for you to download.   So there is still time for you to join in on the fun.  Come on and take some time to fit in this quick little mystery.  You'll have a great little flimsy in just a couple days and ready to finish up later for someone special or yourself even.   I am just starting today myself.  And if you do take part in this mystery, please post a comment that your "In" and let us all know where your photo's are posted once you get them up.  Have fun, stay creative, and have a wonderful day. : )

Mystery Quilt and Monochromatic Challenge

Thought I'd share a mystery quilt I did from last year.  The mystery was put on by the mystery quilt group list.  And I love how these mystery's they put on turn out.  Anxiously looking forward for this years mystery to start but as to date, I have not heard of when that will be.  Regardless, I still have to quilt this last year's one and it's on my UFO list for this year.  I am keeping this one for my own bed and will be painting my master bedroom to
match this quilt.  Since my bedroom is not yet renovated it will be fun to bring it all together.
When I decided to do the Monochromatic Challenges our first color for January was Yellow.  So I designed this bed runner to go with my quilt above. 

 I am still looking for the right background fabric.  
Friday I found one online that I would love to use, but it does have some blue in it.
Being online, I have no way of telling if the blue will match my quilt or not.    So now I'm debating as to whether or not order it and do the runner in a slightly not so monochromatic or to  go totally monochromatic and continue my search for a gray/white marble effect.  

Thursday, March 10, 2011

New Quilt A Long

There is a new QAL starting up over at Lily's Quilts.  Check it out and join in on the fun.

Lily's Quilts

Monday, March 7, 2011

UFO Challenge

I've been updating my progress of my very first UFO challenge (Buffalo Ridge) - which is now waiting for some more fabric as I'm going to re-do all the embroidered blocks.  So until I can pick up the fabric I want it is back in it's box laid out in the order I want to pc. it together in.  That was January's Challenge project.

For Feb. I had the little cocker window quilt.  It was going to be a little wall hanging for my office.  It has very little work left to do, so I kept putting it off and putting it off thinking I had plenty of time to finish it before months end.  Well, it didn't happen and here we are in March already.

For March the number was #1 - which is my Safari quilt.
Now there is still quit a bit of work on this one to do.  Meanwhile I have two contests I'm entered into this month that need to be completed - so they are taking priority over all others. But who knows, If I would get off the computer and get busy sewing I may be able to get them all done before months end and catch up.  Now that would be a nice surprise. : )  Happy Quilting Everyone.



Rainbow Scrap Challenge

This months color is Green.  I already have a few idea's up my sleeve for this one.  Thankfully I have lots of green to work with.   See them in the second row down. Then look at the bottom row.  That is peach, orange, red, pink, and purples.  That is all I've got left.  : (   I really need to go make a trip to the fabric store and stock up on these other colors over the next few months.

I just received my latest issue of Fons and Porter's magazine and found several patterns i that I would love to make.   I'm sure one of them will work great for my greens - but then again, I might just pull up some of my EQ designs I made up over this past winter and use one of those.  Hummm, well, at least I can think on it for a few days.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Brown Bag Quilt Contest - The Process Continues

I continued my Brown Bag Quilt Contest process with selecting the pattern.
I chose a pattern from Connecting threads that was a log cabin block.  It also is a small quilt as I wanted to use it as a table topper.  Plus with my time limits for this project, I couldn't have anything to big or two detailed without dropping all my other projects in the works.  So this pattern worked out great for the fabrics I had received.
 Sewing the blocks together as per the instructions on the pattern.  I have already sewn several rows around  on my blocks by the time I took this photo.
I added the striped fabric in next to the center block and cut it at an angle so that it would make a "V" when the blocks were sewn together.  I didn't worry about getting the stripes lined up in every block as I didn't have enough fabric to waste.  And didn't want to risk running out.
I like to chain pc. my sewing.  It just goes much faster that way.  Once  I get my next strip added to each block, I take them over to the ironing board and press.
Now I'm ready to add the next strip to each block.
And continue on around the log cabin block in the same manner until they are all done and pressed.
 Here is is layed out on the floor in the order it will go together.  To bad the photo doesn't show off the green as well as it looks in real time.
Next I start piecing the rows together.  Starting at the bottom (or top) I pc. each block together to make a strip.  After each row of strips is done I start piecing the strips together, until they are all joined.
 I pin at the matching seams to make sure they join nicely.  Then each strip is pressed before going on to the next one.
Next I added my first border.  I stuck to the pattern directions up to this point. Except for the striped fabric which was my own idea. LOL
 Then I took the top to my larger cutting Matt and made sure it was square.   Not many of mine come out this nice and square and I sometimes will square them up before the first border.  But this one was right on the mark. : )
 I continued adding my borders until I got it the size I wanted for my table.  My second border is of my own creation as I needed to add some more fabric that I had not yet put into the over quilt design.  Plus I wanted this to fit my table just so it hangs down a few inches on each side.  So I got a little creative on the borders - but won't show all the border's here until the whole quilt is done. You only get to see the sides for now. I can't give away all the surprises now yet, can I.  LOL

Here it is!  The flimsy is done and I think it looks GREAT!  Oh if you could really see the colors as they truly are.  I am very happy with this project so far.

 Next I cut my batting (slightly larger then my flimsy top) and I picked out my backing fabric and label fabric.  My backing is the same as the center of each of the log cabin blocks as well as my border(s).
The label is the same as the lighter fabric seen in the blocks.
Now I take it to the larger table, tape down my backing (right side down toward the table), then layer my batting and then the top flimsy.
 I  then pin making sure everything is laying nice and flat and the lines are not being pulled out of alignment.

That is all I'm going to do for today.
I'll post the final steps and the photo's of the finished piece when I'm done.

Have a great and creative week. : )

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Sewing Room Organization

I had to take some time and re-organize my sewing room.  I can't function in a mess and it doesn't take long before I find my sewing space full of clutter and disarray.
First a look at how things get piled up on my tables.  The fabric in the back is actually already in the organization stage (shelves on the left) but the shelves on the right along with the top of all, I hadn't gotten to yet.
Now see how nice the shelves look all organized again (right).  : )
I went through every pc. of cotton, and cut up the smaller pcs. into strips , then sorted my strips by color and put them in the bins you see on the top.  All fabric that is around a fat quarter size or larger I folded, and put on the shelves by color.  I was surprised to see how much blue and green I had, and how little neutrals, browns, pinks, purples, yellows, etc. I had.  Now I'm in a panic, that I need to re-stock those colors I'm lacking in as I have several big quilt projects upcoming that will need them.  I shouldn't have any problems coming up with a monochromatic blue or green quilt when the times comes. LOL

The industrial sewing machine top is cleaned off too now - I just didn't take a photo of it as I wanted to share this corner the most.  I see my walls look pink in this photo - but in reality they are very light yellow.  LOL
 To the left was my cutting area before I re-organized.  You see in behind it my floor standing racks that hold my roll of batting, and stabilizers.
My real cutting table is still in storage, so I'm temporarily using this little dining table - which is way to small, and low.  Under the table is more scraps to be cut, a TV that is going to be mounted up on the wall later, and some rolls of webbing and Velcro.  More large rolls of batting, stabilizer, etc are stacked in the corner.  It bothered me to no end every time I went to work having all this stuff just piled around the table.

The lower photo to the left shows how I took closet brackets, mounted them to the wall, placed my dowels across and put most my rolls of supplies up off the floor that way.  it is so easy to just pull off what you need, cut it, and have it all right there easy accessible, but still out of the way and the floor still clear of clutter.
I still need to buy some more brackets, but I wanted to see how theses worked before I spent the money on more.  I love how it is working and I think I'll even add some more with dowels to hand finished quilts on.  Still don't have my cutting table top here - that should be soon, but now, the only thing under the table is the TV and a sewing machine that needs to go to the sewing machine Dr.
I put the webbing, Velcro, and some other extra's laying around in large bins, put the tops on them, and stacked the two bins to the right corner of the room.   I also want to add a shelf to the top bracket above the smaller rolls of stabilizer for my freezer paper box, and some other  items to sit on.  I'll share more photo's as I go along.