Friday, April 29, 2011

It's going to be a machine quilting weekend

I've had a number of quilts on my "waiting to be quilted" list for much too long.  This is the weekend that I start to make a dent in them.  I"m participating in a FMQ challenge.  14 consecutive days of FMQ.  That should really help to get those quilts under control.  Here's a couple of pictures of what I've done so far.    Quilts that I have sandwich and ready to go:  2 baby girl quilts (my HST project for cyber quilters) , Snowman Collector, True Lovers Knot and Tyler's Bargello.  Whoa, that's a lot of quilting.  My husband is going to a Sox game on Saturday so I get the house all to myself!!  We'll see how far I get.

If I get tired of FMQ I can always work on my Hands2Help quilt.  I have the first block done.  I'm trying to keep it random, we'll see how I do!!  One down, 24 to go!!

Don't forget to stop by Sarah's to see what everyone is Whooping about 

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Hands 2 Help update and Design Wall Monday

I received some wonderful fabrics from Diane at Life Scraps

I'm thinking about adding these to the mix

I have a couple of patterns that I'm thinking about, but haven't settled one yet.    The first one is from Quiltmaker magazine, called Raspberry desert.  I just love this pattern.  But I think I like Urban Cabins below a bit more and with these fabrics.  Terry Atkinson is the maker of Urban Cabins.  So what to do you think?  Which one?  Maybe something different?  Different colors to add to the fabrics???  I love the process of starting a new quilt.
Oh but that's not all.  All four girls were home this weekend and look what we got done!!  I just love the stash closet re-organized.  It's so much easier to find fabrics, pull them out and get them back where they belong.  You can see the before picture here  What a nice Easter surprise for me!!    
Random fact:  My kids, 31, 27, 19 and 17 still like to hunt for Easter eggs.  Yep that's right, when will it end?? This year the three grandsons are old enough and they hid the eggs for the "older kids".                                                                                                                                                                                             And what do you do with the left over panels from a a Bargello?  I finished the top of Tyler's Bargello .  I cut up the left over panel pieces for QST and pinwheels and came up with this.    I used every last bit of those panels, just enough.  I'll add a black border then a border of strips from the material that is left and another black border. Two quilts for the price of one!                                                                                                                        

Friday, April 22, 2011

Tyler's Bargello top is done - woohoo!!

I'm so happy that Tyler is getting a quilt and not just a pot holder.  I can't believe how quickly the blocks went together and the borders got on.  I really didn't think I would have the top done before next week.  Ahhh, nice to have it done though.  I ordered a chocolate brown backing, but the quilting is just going to have to wait.  I really need some mindless sewing next.

But all the girls are coming home today and they're going to want something for dinner so I better get shopping!!  Need to keep them fed and happy so they fold and sort all my fabrics this weekend, they have no idea what fun is in store for them!

I also received my fabrics for Hands2Help, lots of ideas swimming around but haven't settled on anything.  I know it won't be a bargello ;)

Stop by Sarah's to see what everyone is Whooping about this Friday.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Design Wall Monday - Bargello fun

Oh, this may be the only Bargello quilt I ever actually complete.  I love the Bargello quilts and admire them so.  I really wanted to try one.  And I did!!  Good thing is that Tyler will be getting a nice size quilt instead of a bargello hot pad!  I managed to almost complete the blocks this week.  I would have completed them if I didn't have to redo 24 strips that were sewn together backwards!  But at least I'm making progress.  I don't think I'll be doing another.  This gives you an idea of what it's going to look like.

I did make a little progress on the Mirage Bargello. But I have to say, there is a part of me that thinks this one may never actually be finished.
While I'm sewing this my mind wanders (which might be why I had to re-do so many strips) and was thinking about the stash.  I love seeing pictures of peoples stash when they use the little mini bolts.  I looked them up on line and they were just too much for what I have.  So I thought what about manila folders folded in half?  They should be sturdy enough and most of what I have is less than a half yard.  I tried it and was please with the results.  Here's a picture of my closet before.  Not sure how long it will take but the girls are coming home this weekend, wonder if I can talk them into wrapping fabrics around folders?????  Or maybe the Easter Bunny would do it for me???

Don't forget to stop by patchwork times to see what everyone else has on their design wall.  Sew darn crafty has some wonderful things that people have worked on all week.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

not sewing but having fun with EQ7

I was so inspired by Jamie's scrappy HST quilt that the minute I saw it, I knew I had to make one.   I love the way she boxes in the stars.   So I put it in EQ7 and just been having a blast with the different options.    Here's what I have so far, which one do you think is best?  I've played with different color options as well, but these are the fabrics I have so this is the color option I have.  One of these days, I'll have to stop playing around and just sew something

This is option 1, I just like the clean lines.
This is Option 2, different corner stars and different center. Hmmm, what is the center???  

Here's option 3, I think I can call the center a star on this one, Well maybe it's a stretch, but I do like it.  And I think I'm really liking the corner stars.

Option 4 is the same as Option 3, but with the blue forming more complete squares between the stars.  I like the clean lines, but the sides now look a bit cut off.

Option 5, The lines are quite as clean, but I don't think it looks cut off.

So, which option do you think is best?????

  Here's the fabrics.  I think there's enough variety to make it scrappy looking.

Don't forget to stop by Sarah's to see what everyone else has done during the week.  

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Hands 2 Help - need more participants!!!

Sarah over at Confessions of a Fabric Addict who has partnered with Judi at Green Fairy Quilts for this awesome challenge. Visit Sarah and read all the particulars and sign up.  She's had a good response so far with 25 people signing up.  She really would like to get to 50 or more, which would  be just incredible.  If you have charity quilts on your list to make, this would be a great one to join.    Sign  up ends on Wed 4/13 so you need to hurry and there are giveaways!!  Stop by and take a look Hands 2 Help

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Another one moves of the waiting to be quilted list

I remember when I couldn't wait to get to the quilting on finished project.  But now, for one reason or another, there seem to be a number of quilts stuck in the "waiting to be quilted" category.  Well,  there's one less now.  This is the second quilt in a row where I believe I have exercised self control and haven't gone over board with the quilting.  I tried to keep it whimsical and light and think I did pretty close.  Hmmm, should I try my luck on one more?

Design wall.....well not a lot going on there.  I spent most of the weekend machine quilting.  And I'm finding while I love and admire the Bargello quilts, I'm not really sure they are my cup of tea.  I started Mirage to see if I would like and didn't really think about "what if I don't??".  It's not as bad as Y-seams (which I'll avoid at just about any cost) but pretty darn near it.  You just have to go soooooo slooooowwww.  And Tyler  really loves the one I'm suppose to make for him.  So I did get started on Tyler's, stopped working on the other, but not really enough to show.  Maybe next week or two weeks from now.  His birthday is in June, so I'll have something by then!!  How do you think a 19 year old boy would like a bargello hot pad for his Birthday????

I do have a design basket if that counts.  That's from some of the ugliest fabrics I have, and see cut up that small, they are looking better already don't you think???? I still see a couple that are hopeless.  There are 720 twosies  waiting to become foursies'.   A leader and ender project while I'm working on Tyler's bargello quilt.

Stop by Judy's to see what's on everyones' design wall (basket).  

Saturday, April 9, 2011

new sewing table

Not a lot of sewing this week.  But I did want to share my new sewing table.  Here's my work surface before.  It's actually made for my Pfaff, but I've got it on the Bernina now.  This is what I've used to do all my machine quilting for years.  It's been wonderful.  But then I saw how to make a cheap sewing table   Sent my wonderful husband to the home improvement store after we watched it.  He was very excited, he loves doing things in my sewing room.  And the fact that I just finished a quilt for him that he loves, was even more motivation for him!!.

And here's what he came up with.    Oh my goodness so much space, I absolutely love it and I love the price of it!!  The foam insulation was very cheap at local home improvement store and the vinyl on the top from Walmart was next to nothing.  The fabric just glides right over the vinyl, amazing.  I did cover the foam with a bright and cheery fabric.  I can't believe how much of that I have.  But now, my ironing board and sewing table match.  Oh and as an added bonus, the table is actually larger. The foam hangs over the edge about 6 inches on two sides, so bigger table to hold those big quilts, woohoo!!!

Here's a picture of the end so you get a feel for how it was put together (in case you didn't see the video). I needed 3 different sheets of foam to get to the correct height for my machine.  You just cut out for your machine, then cut the vinyl to fit your machine and 30 minutes later, you have a wonderful new sewing table.  I was able to adjust the height of my chair to be raised a couple of inches so it's not uncomfortable for me.  If I would have been able to do that, Tom would have cut off a couple of inches of the legs of the table.  But so far so good.  The only problem I have seen so far is with fleece.   The fleece does not glide on the vinyl.  I did not have any problems with flannel or cotton, so I am pleased as punch!

Ah and there is the sewing.  I have my new leaders and enders project lined up.  I"m going to do  Bonnie Hunters Fair and Square from her new book.  I have some really ugly fabrics that I want to use up and that calls for string blocks and 1.5 inch squares.  I've heard if  you cut the ugly ones up small enough their inner beauty shines.  I'm going to put that one to the test!

Don't forget to stop by Sarah's and see what everyone is Whooping about.  And check out her helping hands challenge, sign up starts tomorrow.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Pattern Available

Thanks to Raincross Quilt Guild I learned how to post files on the blog.  You can find the pattern for Direction to my Heart here.  Again, this is my first time doing this, putting a pattern together so let me know if you have any comments and please send links to post of completed projects, would LOVE to see them.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

It's done - completely done!

Here's a look at the quilting.  I think I found a good balance on the quilting and didn't go over board.  Mostly it is SITD quilting.  The only place where I didn't SITD was on the blue.  And even then I kept it simple (so unlike me).  I tried to bring the pattern of the radiant beauties to the blue of the log cabins.   I'm pretty happy with it.

Someone asked for the pattern, I have the EQ7 project, if you're interested send me an email and I'll get it off to you.  I also tried to put instructions together for someone who didn't have EQ7, those are available if you are interested as well, the patterns are paper pieced.  Now the standard disclaimer is that I have never done this before and I did it after the fact...I gave it a good try and think for the most part I remembered everything :)  Again if you're interested send me an email I will send you what I have.  Or if you know how to add PDFs to a blog, let me know and I'll just add it to the blog. Thanks to all for the encouragement, it really helped to get it finished!!

I replaced the EQ7 print with the actual quilt in the banner, that felt pretty good.   Another one added to the quilts completed in 2011.  It's done and my husband loves it.  I put a nice flannel on the back which will be oh so cozy for him.  He really was an active participant in the making of this quilt.  I'll make a quilter out of him yet!!

My waiting to be quilted list is still pretty large though, need to get working on that and get those out of the way.

Now on to something very very simply, squares, straight lines, maybe a string block or two...

Sharon at Vroomans Quilts posted a boxes in boxes quilt that I just fell in love with and had to make one.  Her's is bright and cheery.  As you' ve seen from my quilts, I tend to like darker colors, so mine is a little, hmmm, ok a lot darker.  I've been doing this one as a leader and ender project since early Feb.  Finally got all the blocks done and added sashing today.  Oh nice straight easy lines, it was wonderful!!    I hope to move something off the waiting to be quilted list before this one gets added.  I'm hooked on leaders and enders now.  I'm going to do Fair and Square from Bonnie Hunter's new book.  I have a set of 30 of the ugliest fat quarters anyone has every seen.  It was a grab bag and something I'll never do again, but they are lighter colors!  And the squares will be cut up really little. That and string blocks - isn't that what you do with ugly fabric, make string blocks and cut it up really small?

And just for fun I started a bargello quilt. Daughter number 3 wants me to make one for her guy.  We really like her guy, so I'm gonna do it, but wanted to make a small one as practice first.  I didn't have the colors that were supposed to be used and didn't want to buy fabric, so I used what I had.  Here' s the picture of the work in progress and what the pattern looks like.    There was only so much I could do on this one, cuz I really needed easy for a little while.

Well, that was quite a week!!  Don't think this week will have as much sewing in it, but I made up for that this week!  Stop over a Judy's to see what others have on their design wall.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Direction to my Heart top is done - Yippee

Oh that's right the top is completed and it has a name!!  Direction to my Heart, my husband came up with it and I thought it was good.  There were a couple of suggestions that I did really like.

I was going to put the blue as the last border but I consulted my local quilting expert (my husband - who was with all of you on putting the border the way it is now) and he thought the yellow looked better.  I think it looks great.  I can't believe I got the top done!!

And that's not all, I also made my very first quilt label, yep that's right.  So excited.  Well, I have the design done, just need to get to the machine and get that completed, but really it's machine embroidery and will take no time at all.    I did put the date of April 2011 so I really need to get this one quilted and done completely!

Stop by Sarah's to see what every one is whooping about.  And I'm also linking up today at Lynne's "Fresh Sewing Day",   check out what every one has been working on in March.

My first Quilt Label - am I missing anything?

Yep, that's right, this is the first label that I have ever created and will put on a quilt.  My "husband's quilt" now has a name "Direction to my Heart", and he's the one that actually helped come up with that name!!  I'm not really sure what should go on a label, name, who it's for, and when it was made.  Anything else?