Monday, December 24, 2012

{Merry Christmas!)

Wishing you all the joy and happiness this Glorious Season brings!  Merry Christmas!

 {Eli was supposed to do this shot, but he refused so Aunt Carla stepped in to show him how its done.}

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

{Quick Quilted Gems}

All of my handmade Christmas gifts are finished and wrapped up (or already gifted) so I'm working on some NO-STRESS projects!  Nada deadlines just sew when I can and enjoy the process!  It really feels good!
I've been a huge fan of handmade stockings lately and figured our expanding family could use a fresh batch as well!  I whipped up this one last night (in 2 hours - next one should be even faster!) using this easy and free pattern/tutorial by Imagine Gnats.  I did my initial search on Pinterest and found this list of stocking tutorials via the SEWN Blog so feel free to peruse around... SO MANY great ideas!

But the Quilt As You Go (QAYG) method is one of my favorites so this particular pattern sucked me in!  
(This stocking is for Baby Girl A)

The outer fabric is quilted directly onto batting, then you add a lining at the end - so easy!
I even broke out my colored pencils and chose slightly different color schemes for each of us - I know - so organized of me :-)  I hope to show you all five finished stockings in the near future!  Now that we have an actual fireplace with mantle - I love decorating for Christmas!

And... a little mug rug love!
My mom is one of my biggest cheerleaders - and she asked me to whip up two mug rugs for her friends.  I thought this the perfect use of these little (as in 2.5" finished!) paper pieced squares found here.   I love the star pattern they make - look closely to find it!

The quilting took about 2 minutes per mug rug:  wavy-straight lines.  I love the effect!
Each mug rug measures about 8" square, perfect for coffee and a muffin!  I hope my moms gals love them!

What sewing endeavors are you working on? Deadlines met? Or just some no-stress fun sewing?  


Sunday, December 16, 2012

{A Contemplation of Baby Girl Quilts}

Inevitably, two baby girl quilts need to be created in the next couple of months so I've started perusing my fabric stash and after much pulling and putting back of fabric, I I think I might like this menagerie of greens, pinks, purples, aquas... and a bit of grey and navy thrown in for the heck of it.  What do you think?  A little too crazy?  I'm not opposed to starting over either...  Oh, and the main big flower print is an Alexander Henry print called "stone flower" circa 2009.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Quilt Camp {rewind}

I was lucky enough to attend Quilt Camp last weekend in Pleasant Lake, MI at the Hankard Inn B&B - and I must say, it was better than I imagined!  The accommodations were warm and cozy, the food was delicious, and new quilty friends were everywhere!

 My four table-mates were awesome:  Kara, Angela, Faith, and Amanda
We may have spent slightly more time talking than sewing, but that's ok!  We all got a good amount of projects finished too!
 Jeni was one of the teachers at Camp and assisted us all in making a fun little drawstring bag! Mine is going to hold crochet projects - love it!

Our finishes!  See - productivity did abound for most of us!

Faith taught paper piecing and I must say - learning first hand is MUCH easier than reading about it online or seeing it on YouTube. 
 I started out with a stack of templates (not the original project I was going to make with these templates, but no worries!) coordinating fabric scraps, and a neutral linen solid.
 Bing. Bang. Boom.
And you end up with:

 This cute little 2.5" block!  I'm making a few Christmas gifts, mug rugs, to be exact that my mom wants to give to friends.  I'm a big fan of paper piecing now, but this particular block has VERY heavy seams to press open, 12 layers actually.  Other than that - I'm in love!
I also spent a portion of my time working on a Christmas Table Runner for my Kitchen!  Just a bunch of HSTs arranged according to this block pattern by Don't Call me Betsy.  It was super fun and easy to make!  I'm not a fan of actual Christmas fabric so I just used a bunch of red and green prints from my stash.  Looks Christmas-y to me!

 Once again, I let the practical side get the best of me and I did the backing in all green so it can be used during other times of the year too!  Green is one of the colors in my kitchen - shocking, I know! 

 There was one other project I worked on at Quilt Camp but I cannot divulge that information - sorry - Its almost Christmas gifting time!

So over all I had a blast sewing and creating for a solid 3 days and didn't wipe one toddler bottom, answer to "Mommy!" or do one load of dishes.  It was heavenly....  Pure bliss.
I hear Brenda and the girls are planning another Quilt Camp for this coming May - I cannot go but I highly encourage you to look into attending if you live anywhere within driving distance of Michigan - if you're looking to learn new techniques and socialize with other quilty gals.  

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

{WIP Wed + a fav}

 My first attempt at paper piecing!
And I haven't even started sewing yet!  Just trying to lay it out... and I'm still about 50 squares short which reminds me to print out more. (done!)
I have a surprisingly sad supply of red fabrics so when I head to my fav little LQS tomorrow, more red is in order!  This really is a fun pattern once you see it finished - by LRStitched.

I hope to get a good chunk of these squares whipped up at Quilt Camp this weekend, yay!

 A pack of 8 Chisel tip Sharpie markers snuck into my grocery cart the other day while shopping - best purchase I've made in a while!   I've always loved writing utensils... plus I LOVE the modern colors.  Its the little things, right?!
   Well done, Sharpie!  

Saturday, December 1, 2012

{Introducing} Seaside Improv

 Seaside Improv is done!  And just in the nick of time to submit to QuiltCon! Yipeee!  *Just* finished the online entry deal with only a few hours to spare!  I guess we'll hear by the end of December who has made the cut.  I'm only entrant #633 so I wouldn't be surprised if mine isn't chosen for the show.  I'm sure all the other 632 quilts are more amazing than my little exercise in improvisation!

 For the quilting I did a random (and sparse) cross-hatch design.   I'm happy with how it turned out considering I tried some wavy quilting and had to rip it out due to how horrible it looked!  I think the straight quilting is modern, and fits the design perfectly.  

The binding is 95% Kona Cotton in Coal grey, but I added about 12" worth of scraps from the top, just for a bit of interest.  After all, this is an improv quilt, right?! 

 I wimped out on doing a pieced backing and pulled this vintage bed sheet from my fabric stash.  I found it at a garage sale this summer for a buck or two.  I know its the epitome of NOT modern, but the colors worked, and I rather liked the juxtaposition of super modern and super... vintage!  Who really scrutinizes the back of a quilt anyhow?  Hopefully not the judges at QuiltCon!

{Seaside Improv Stats}
Size: 61" x 85"
Design: by the seat of my pants, although each "block" is 21" long
Fabric: all sorts, from my stash
Quilting: straight line in a random cross-hatch design
Binding: by machine
 Will reside: in my living room, unless someone buys it at QuiltCon!

Thanks for stopping by!