4/14/2014

Always remember to...


I'm currently plugging away with quilting the wall hanging I've mentioned previously.  I'm keeping it mostly organic with the exception of a few guiding lines I drew on.  Project: Happy Quilting is going very well.  I'm remembering to enjoy the process while creating things that make me smile, and I'm staying away from obligation sewing as best I can.  :)



Quilt Story

I spend a bit of my time worrying about the social/community aspect of my quilting.  I'm better about it than I used to be but it still nags at me.  Questions like…how much do I "share" my little place on the internet through link ups, social media, etc.  Also…do I blog enough?  Anyway…I've talked about all of that here before.  I think it stems from insecurity…the infamous first day of school question…"Will they like me?"

Lately I've thrown caution to the wind.  I've participated in some link ups and I'm so enjoying the interaction with people and being inspired by their work.  I'm instagramming more although I still tend to forget about it for the most part.  I even added back the social media links on my page, and I'm going to be teaching a class at our local quilt shop.

Fresh Poppy Design
I also took the plunge and decided to submit a quilt for Quilt Story.  Megan and Heather are talented and generous quilters/bloggers who share their space with other talented quilters through a weekly link up and features.  Lets just say I never really felt like I was good enough to be featured before.  And while I don't know that that's changed, I am so pleased that they accepted my submission and are featuring me on their blog today!

So hop on over to Quilt Story and read the story of how "Curious Carl" came to be.

It's a favorite quilt of mine with a story that's dear to my heart.

Thank you so much to everyone who reads and supports me in my creative endeavors.  Family, friends, friends yet to be made, people who pop in from a link up or feature…the fact that you spent precious moments of your time here in my little space means a lot.

And Megan and Heather…thank you for taking your precious time to poke around my little space here and to share a bit of what I do with others.  :)

4/07/2014

"Radiate"


The trees have leaves.  Well, some of them.  I can't believe it!  I seriously thought that was the winter that wouldn't end.

I'm really pleased with the finish I have to share today.  I'm calling it "Radiate" not only for the radiating diamond pattern, but because this quilt makes me think of summer...the radiating sun, heat, and.. lightning bugs (maybe you know them as fireflies?).  Quilts probably don't normally seem like a summer thing, but in my house I like it cold...so I can relax under a quilt while I think about how miserably hot it is outside.  Oh air conditioning...how I love thee.

But, lets not get ahead of ourselves.  I need to enjoy spring while it's here and the temperatures are lovely for being outside.

Maybe enjoying the Oklahoma wind...

Lets keep our fingers crossed that we don't have a big tornado year again.

Anyway...lets talk quilt.  I used a layer cake of "Oh Deer" and a layer cake of Kona Snow.  Yeah...I wasn't so thrilled with the Kona Snow.  It was cut all kinds of wonky.  :/  But, I made it work.  I did sort of a plaid quilting on it that I LOVE!!!  
It took quite a while to mark the quilting lines out on the top, but it was totally worth it.  I would love to try it again in a variety of thread colors to get more of a "plaid" effect.

On the back I used some Ikea fabric (the flowers...I can't remember the name but can look it up later if anyone is curious) as well as some Alexander Henry fabrics ("Heath" which is a crosshatch and the goat fabric).  My absolute favorite one has to be those lightning bugs in the jars.  It's a Teagan White for Birch Fabrics.  It just brings back so many fun memories of catching lightning bugs, back in Pennsylvania, as a kid.

I did machine bind this...which isn't a favorite of mine, but I needed it done by tomorrow for our family pictures.  I think it's going to be spectacular in our pictures.  I'm hoping to get one of the kids wrapped up in it to go in my sewing room...which I still need to blog about.  :)

I hope y'all are getting a taste of spring wherever you are!

Linking up with - Show and Tell Tuesday, Fabric Tuesday, Lets be Social, Needle and Thread Thursday

3/14/2014

The Wonderful World of Color

Spring is in the very very early stages.  Green grass has begun to sprout up in little tufts here and there, and I'm so glad I finished this quilt in preparation for spring.  

This is a group effort from last year's "Stitch That Stash Bee."  For my month I asked for these reverse rainbow starburst blocks in any color of their choosing.  I'm so pleased with the variety of color I received, and I really think the grey block in the center helps to balance everything out.
I had to hand quilt this one.  I just had to.  The quilt told me to.  Since the stars were a little funky I thought some fun square in square stitching, off center, would be what they needed.

I had this quilt almost done for MONTHS, and then it sat folded neatly on the corner of my sewing table for longer than it should have.  But, it's finished now.


With a gorgeous Alexander Henry print for the back.  Thanks Bee Mates for my lovely quilt.  I'll certainly think of the sweet new friends I made when I'm curled up under it.  :)


Linking up with Show and Tell TuesdayLets Bee Social, and Needle and Thread Thursday.

2/26/2014

Gettin' Baggy Wit It

Apparently I have the Will Smith song "Getting' Jiggy Wit It" stuck in my head (Or was he The Fresh Prince then?).  So, pardon the silly post title.  But, I have made a few drawstring bags….

 I asked my friend, Candace, if buying Jeni Baker's "Lined Drawstring Bag" Pattern was really worth it.  The answer was an emphatic YES!

 I wanted to make a couple of bags for my kids in which to gift them the little "Love Note Garlands" I made them for Valentine's Day.  Even kids appreciate good packaging!  :)  Speaking of…how about that gorgeous ribbon from The Netherlands?!  I've been eager to use it, and just couldn't find the right project until now.
I thought I was going to have a difficult time picking out a fabric for my son, but then I remembered I had this sweet hippo print with blue hearts and it was kismet.

 Jeni has a free tutorial on her blog, but I honestly do recommend the pattern itself.  Takes all of the math out of it for you if you plan on adjusting the size.  She takes it from like tiny jewelry pouch size all of the way to laundry bag!  And it is a ridiculously fast project, with a nice wow factor.

Since Valentine's I've had a myriad of projects to work on and contemplate.  I've been plugging away at my Pow-Wow Quilt (the top is almost complete).  I also finalized my plans for the wall-hanging I posted about a while back and ultimately decided to ditch all of the color schemes and go with this:
I think it's going to look fantastic!

I was choosing a color scheme for a challenge for our Guild's 2014 show (which will be in October), and my wonderful pals and I came up with this (with another orange and a lovely blue as well which I don't own):
YUM!  Leslie said it reminds her of candy.  What's better than candy?!  ;)

Oh, and I finished quilting my Stitch That Stash quilt, FINALLY!  I was about 10 minutes from having it done for months and it just sat there, for absolutely no reason whatsoever.  I'm attempting to get the binding on…but this little one stole it borrowed it while she watched "Frozen."  Which I predict we'll be watching every day for quite some time.
On top of watching Frozen on repeat and the other projects, I am still working on knitting up my first sweater.  I work on it in spurts.  And then I'm also taking an online photography course which I am LOVING!!!  I'm about halfway through and am understanding my camera so much more.  I highly recommend Shultz Photo School if you're looking to get to know and understand your DSLR better. :)

Okay, enough of the rambling!  Enjoy the last few days of February everyone!!!  Lets pray it warms up soon.  :)  I may enjoy watching "Frozen," but I don't enjoy feeling frozen day in and day out.

2/13/2014

Love Notes Garland



Are you in need of a last minute Valentine idea?  Well, I have one for you!  Mostly because, well, I just came up with this idea yesterday morning and made it this afternoon.  It took maybe 10-15 minutes, and I think it will be mucho loved by the kiddos tomorrow.  Or should I say maƱana since I seem to be in a Spanish frame of mind.

 Start off with some card stock or medium weight scrapbook paper (or maybe some cute postcards or note cards you don't mind fussy cutting).  Cut your paper into heart shapes.  You can use a die cutting machine (i.e. Silhouette or Cricut), or you can do like I did and just trace the same heart over and over again.  I happened to have a nice heart tracing template on hand, but you could easily make your own.

I cut out 11 heart shapes (3 blue and 8 peach).  On the back of the first one I wrote simply, "I love…". On each heart following that I wrote something I love about that particular kiddo.  This one happens to be my daughter's.  (Please excuse the poor grammar on the heart above.  We'll say I was too overcome with emotion to think clearly.)

On the last heart of the garland I wrote:
the "and" is there because each heart ends in a comma so you can read them in sequence.

I used a 1/8" hole punch for the holes and twine for the string.  (I placed the holes differently on my son's, but I'm not sure I have a preference really.  I did the two holes on his close towards the center so there was only a small bit of the twine coming through the front of each heart.)  If you don't have a tiny hole punch, use a regular one or use a paper clip.  Improvise.  ;)

Tie a loop at each end of the twine and they're ready for hanging:
I arranged my hearts so that the pretty fronts are facing out and the messages are on the back.  This way it's like little secret love notes from me to my children.  

How great would this be to receive in the mail?  It's so light it would be very cost effective to send to a dear friend that lives far away, or maybe your parents, your spouse?  Of course a husband/boyfriend might not hang it up, but he'll certainly appreciate the sentiment.

Happy Valentine's Day, everyone!!!  :)



2/06/2014

Decisions, decisions


So, I have this wall that I want to remove the picture from and put up a nice large single block quilt. (Try to imagine the wall in a very subtle gray because we'll be repainting.)  But, I can't seem to decide what to do.  I think I've decided on the "Best Friends" block.  But, what color scheme?  So I played around and came up with these options:

 First up we have a cool color palette.  I like this one, but am not sure I like the lack of a warm color as a wall hanging in my house.
 So, I added some orange…I like it, but am feeling like it reads "beach-y" which doesn't really go with my house.
So then I tried a rosy coral.  I just don't know.

I feel like the outer triangles (in a minty green) look like they're just sort of floating there.  But, maybe that's all in my head.  I didn't like the design when all of the outer rim triangles were all the same color.  I played with an ombre effect from the center out and didn't like that either.

Then I thought, what if I used some flying geese instead?

I think this would be REALLY neat if it was amongst other blocks, because I think I could get a neat illusion of a curve effect possibly.  But, I'm not loving this as a solo block.

So then I flipped the flying geese:
I like the "x" made by the negative space, but am not sure about this one either.  Hmmm…maybe I ditch this block and go with the other that is in my brain…a modified "Morning Star" block.  I'll draw up some of those next.  Any thoughts on these?  Or scrap them all?

Oh, and I'm adding this option as well, but maybe it's too dark?