Friday, February 26, 2010

Bee Blocks for Elizabeth

Elizabeth of Oh Fransson! had the month of February for the BEE-autiful VQB and she posted this fabulous tutorial for us to follow. As you can see she supplied us with some Valentine-y solids and prints... do check out her blog to see how cute the little baggies of fabric were! It was a really fun package to get in the mail, to be sure! Elizabeth requested rectangle blocks between 8" and 15" in size.

After sewing sets of 4 strips together, chopping those into 3 pieces, and sewing chunks of 3 together... here's how my cutting table looked:

Out of those fifteen mini-chunks I puzzle-pieced together 3 larger blocks. Yes, some straightening of edges had to be done to make them all fit... and here's the largest one that measures about 12.5" x 13.5"

The next two were each about 9" x 13.5".

This piecing method was completely new to me and I thoroughly enjoyed the process. It was quite time consuming as I probably spent about 6 hours from start to finish making them... but dang did it make for some cool blocks! Elizabeth, I hope these blocks suit you~

Sunday, February 21, 2010

On the Hook...

Here's what on my crochet hook:

4/5 of the way done... just a few more rows then some trim...

Shocker I know - a blue baby blanket! The entire thing is made from front post and back post double crochet stitches - more explanation here as to why I love it so much.
I timed how long it takes to do one row....
15 minutes.
But well worth it in my opinion - it is SO SOFT!

So what's on your hook? (Or needles, or sewing machine?)

Friday, February 19, 2010

"Layered Woods" Quilt Finished! Yup, for our little one...

Here it is! After two snow storms in a week I finally dragged Justin outside to hold it up for photos. Just tonight I asked him what I should name it and he aptly said "Layered Woods" after I described what kinds of fabric are in it. And I think that will be the official name. Odd... we can choose a name for a quilt but not our baby that's due in six weeks.... figures!

Anyhow - back to the quilt! I did end up stippling it as I wanted close quilting that would make it nice and sturdy and keep all the seams strong and long lasting. I know its nothing exciting but I do think it turned out great. Plus it doesn't detract from the strong overall design of the stacked fabric strips.

I originally made 6 rectangle blocks to work into the back (or side B) of this quilt... but after playing with, rearranging, stressing over, dreaming about, and ultimately NOT liking how anything looked after an (annoying) week I scrapped the idea of those rectangles and just used big chunks of the fabrics... including FLANNEL which is the white section. I think the flannel will make it extra cozy. Now - if Joanns carried more than 12 colors of Kona Cotton I could have probably done something with the rectangles. And yes, I realize I own a Kona Color Card but I was too impatient to wait for an order of fabric to arrive in the mail. Maybe I should have gone straight to the Kona Card and picked out some coordinating solids? Hindsight is always 20/20,eh? I needed to finish this quilt so I didn't feel like a complete failure, and so I could move on to other things in my list of projects. It was just weighing on my mind, ya know? I typically over-think my quilt layouts and decided to keep it simple this time... for my own sanity's sake.

So I'm glad its done, and I'm quite pleased with the outcome. It measures 40" x 60" after being washed... all of these photos so far are before washing, so you can see the stippling better. I realize its a bit large, but I consider it a plus because it will be big enough to cover a toddler bed when the time comes.

I made Justin take a quick shot before heading inside. He tried to get out of it but I'm good at making him laugh. I love his smile!

Finally - the binding! I LOVE how it turned out!!! As I mentioned in a prior post, its from the Flower Child collection by Iota... called Honeycomb in Creamesicle. Purchased from Hawthorne Threads, one of my favorite fabric shops! And geez, its even on sale right now!

Here's a few post-washing photo in all its crinkly goodness...

Layered Woods, in its new home, the nursery. I hope baby boy loves it as much as I do. I think I'll hold off on making a label for it so I can include birth stats and (hopefully) his name! haha

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

34 Weeks

34 weeks today... and I think I'm starting to waddle a bit. Its endearing, right? My wardrobe is down to 2 pair of pants, and about 5 shirts. Plus this new cardigan I snagged at Target :-) Goes with everything so my co-workers better like it! They're going to be seeing it often!

And I swapped out the creme armchair for this new Poang Chair from Ikea, along with matching footstool. It has a nice little bouncing motion (not quite a rocker) so I think baby and I will enjoy lounging in it after he arrives. Hazel loves to snuggle up on the footstool, so she apparently approves.


to be blogged soon! Oh yea!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

*Stash Upgrade*

Black and Natural "In the News" Authentic Collection (by Moda)
"Diamond Dandy" in Piney Woods - Hope Valley by Denyse Schmidt

FQ set - Jessica Levitt "Timber" in Berry

Plans are already running through my head to make these fat quarters into a quilt... hmmmm

Friday, February 12, 2010

Bee Block for Faith

For February, Faith requested a block called "Map of the States," so well taught by Elizabeth of Oh Fransson! Faith sent a plethora of Daisy Chain (Amy Butler) fabrics and a couple of solids for us to play with. Elizabeth's tutorial uses Freezer Paper to piece this block, which I think is quite brilliant! It was fun to draw out, color in with Colored Pencils (which I actually had to go out and BUY because I didn't own any! The Shame!) and then iron the freezer paper onto the chunks of fabric. I highly reccomend trying this technique, if you are curious. Since this was my first block, it took me a while to complete, but I'm sure when I try it again it will go much faster. I do love the final effect: even distribution of fabrics, angled seams, lots of visual interest!

I did have one snaffu while sewing this block.... after I had each of the 4 rows together, I laid them out to sew the rows together and one row was a bit *off.* So I thought "hmmm I should square that up." Well obviously this block is meant to be a bit wonky but that idea didn't enter my mind unter 43 seconds later when I was done hacking the far right row. The photo doesn't show it (thank goodness) but Left to Right is just slightly LESS THAN the requeasted 12.5" square. Next time I will think twice, cut once... Faith swears this will not ruin her quilt, but I still feel badly about it. See Faith's VISION for said quilt here. Its going to be fabulous!
Happy Weekend!!!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Sneak Peek!

Newly attached and ready to be hand-stitched to the back.... a finished baby quilt soon!

This fabric is by Iota, collection is Flower Child, and this design is Honeycomb in Creamsicle.

Monday, February 8, 2010

And the Winner is....

Heather! chose #50 and thats you! I've sent you an email with details.
Thanks to all 112 of you who commented! That's an all-time record for me!

If you'd like to see all 16 of those green & grey bee blocks laid out together, check out yesterday's post here.... and tomorrow I have a Sneak Peek to share!

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Last but Not Least & All Spread Out

Just a quick show-and-tell...

Here's my final block... it arrived save and sound, from SophiaAster! Isn't it lovely? I particularly adore the 9-patch blocks - they're just fun to gaze upon~

Lisa also snuck this piece of Green Pairs fabric in my package - I've drooled over this print for long enough! Thanks so much Lisa - you're too kind!

Finally, here are all 16 blocks that my SNTM VQB-ers made... this is by no means the FINAL layout... it just something to see how they all work together, and I love EACH block! I think I'll square up each one with gray Kona (light or dark grey? who knows!) stitch them together and VOILA! This is my project to finish before baby arrives. I'll have (hypothetically speaking) about 2 weeks of down time before my due date as my last day of full-time work is March 16th!
I plan to do lots of sewing, quilting, cleaning, arranging, laundry... crocheting... sleeping... and probably a bit of worrying too. For good measure.

Friday, February 5, 2010

1 Year Blogaversary = Giveaway!


Dear Readers,
Exactly one year ago today, I started this piddly little blog called "Sew This Is My Life." I've been sharing my quilting and sewing endeavors, fabric stash additions, ideas, thoughts, bits and pieces of every day life, one yummy pizza recipe, and lots of photos of Hazel! And more recently... a growing belly, and nursery goodies!

I've received so many wonderful emails and comments from you, encouragement, ideas, suggestions, and I've made some great friends! I don't have many local friends who are into sewing so having this online community has really been a life-changer for me! So to all 144 followers, and almost 30,000 visitors... THANK YOU! You inspire me in ways I never thought possible! Its been a great year and I look forward to more fun in the future!

NOW on to the good part ~ if you've visited my blog in the last few weeks, you'll have noticed quite a few green & gray blocks popping up... here's one such example. I had the month of January in the Sew New to Me VQB on Flickr and had my girls sew up these blocks! Well, I have an abundance of fabric left over (PLENTY to piece the back too!) so I thought "Hey, why not make up a little packet for my 1 year blogaversary!" So here it is - about .75 yards worth of green & gray goodness....

I think I've tossed in almost every print, plus the 4 solids. Everything from Hope Valley, to Full Moon PolkaDots, to Heather Bailey... Kona... and the uber-adorable Grey Elephants all the way from Japan. You could make some string blocks, a log-cabin stroller quilt, coin pouches... whatever your heart desires. Or just add to your stash if you're low on green & gray!

To enter just leave a comment with your location & all-time favorite color combination, and be sure to include an email address so I can contact you should I pull your name.

I'll start: I'm Cristin from Columbus, Ohio... and my favorite color combo is green & gray! Obviously.

Good luck! I'll leave comments open until this Sunday evening (2/7/10) and announce the winner on Monday morning! Now, off you go!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

32 Weeks and Tomorrow...

And all is well! Yesterday was the final ultrasound and baby boy measured right on target, currently 3lbs 14 ounces.... so he's still baking away and I have some major sewing to do! This weekend - I'm grounded to my sewing room! Really! I'm quite excited about it.... I have such plans running through my head! I think a softie (aka stuffed animal) is a *must sew* item as it should be a quick finish and I'll feel accomplished. It will be very basic, as it will be my first softie but I have to start somewhere. Right? Right!!

tomorrow is my One Year Blog Anniversary which means a GIVEAWAY! Yup, this is a sneak peek! Stop by tomorrow evening and find out more...