Wednesday, February 26, 2014

WIPs and lots of sewing!

Whew, I've been super busy the last couple weeks!  I finished some drapes, made a couple quilts, lots of selvage bins, and have totally cleaned out my sewing room!  Much needed to say the least :)

Don't these look like jellybean colors!  Fun!  

This was a set of strips on a Moda scrap bag.  I think they made a lovely quilt!

Euro pleats on the drapes I made - very elegant.

A new project - a shop sample...will have to blog more about that when I get it finished :)

Check out the Quiltsy Team Blog for more WIP's!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

WIPs Wednesday - Busy as a Bee!

I've been as busy as I can bee working on those WIPs this week!  Finished quite a few projects, and still have plenty to work on, as usual!  The best funny I saw this week was this - "I consider myself to be a beginning quilter....I am always beginning projects"  Hehe.  I think I resemble that remark!  I am trying to be a "finishing" quilter, though!
Here is another "beginning" project!  It's something special that a friend and I are cooking up.  Pretty florals and white on white fabrics.  Mostly stash!  It's really fun to see what you get when you combine from two sets of stash.  I think we'll be going to the design wall tomorrow and starting to sew it all together, so that will be fun.  My biggest project this week was rearranging my sewing room to make better use of my design wall.  I'm enjoying being able to put things up on it and arrange and rearrange.  

These WIP Wednesdays are a bit of a challenge for me because I work in the quilt shop on Wednesdays, so I suppose I should start getting my post ready on Tuesday when I have a little more brain power left!  Today was a super busy day at work as we have Quilt Run 101 going on.  All the coastal Oregon shops get together for a fun shop hop that usually ends on Presidents day.  This year we are extending it a few more days because of the snow that hampered the north part of the run last weekend.  I think most of the northern visitors hit our shop today because we were so busy!  It's always fun to have so many visitors from out of our area.  Everyone said such nice things about our shop, and they love the new samples we have been working on - I have quite a few up, as well as my patterns.  Right now my local shop is the only one I have my patterns in, but I am hoping to expand this year and get in more shops.  I still want to give my home shop the advantage, though - Sharan has been such an encouragement to me in expanding my capabilities!

Well I suppose that's it for today - time to relax and watch some mindless TV!  After a day on my feet it sure feels good to get off them.  Make sure you go check out the WIPs on Wednesday post on the Quiltsy Blog for more fun WIPS from some of my favorite quilters!

Monday, February 10, 2014

When Life Gives You Scraps,,,

Make a Quilt!  Here is my finished little wall-hanging quilt:

I'd say it's pretty cute for just using up some scraps :)  Do you have this panel, too?  I might have some more hiding in one of my boxes - they were really popular way back when....

I tackled another project I had been shuffling around from flat surface to flat surface - you probably know the drill.  I had a charm pack and even some fabric for borders and the back and didn't want to hide it away and forget about it, so I just kept moving it around my sewing room until I would have time to sew it together!  So I started last night and finished the top this afternoon:

Isn't it nice and bright?  I have totally forgotten what line this is, but I love the colors!  This will make a fun lap or baby quilt, I think.  I feel very happy about finally sewing it up, and hope to get it quilted in the next few days - sneaking it in between my wedding dress alterations and a set of drapes I need to finish.  Quilting is always a nice reward for getting my other jobs finished!

Sunday, February 09, 2014

A Pleasant Distraction

I started out today intending to get the closet in my sewing room cleaned out.  I managed to pull most of the stuff out of the top shelf, but made the mistake of starting to go through a box of fabric I had set aside...uh-oh, that led to a little piecing and quilting!

I've always liked this panel, but never really could decide what to do with it.  Today, I thought of just adding a row of 2 inch squares all around.  I've been cutting them to use for a project, so I just had to dig for some nice colors.
I added some pale pink backing and a cotton batting, then quilted it all over in a small stipple.  Good practice time!  (This is a great way to get some machine quilting practice time in - just make a little project and quilt it all up'll see improvement in every project you do.)

I think my stitches look pretty good!  No stitch regulator, just me and my Juki :)  After I finished this I got busy and put everything away again - another couple  bags of stuff I don't need are ready to go out my door....things are getting more organized every day!  And this little cutie will be listed in my Etsy shop just as soon as I can get some good pictures of the finished quilt.

Saturday, February 08, 2014

Manatee Love

This is a fun project that I've been working on this month.  This was started by a custom request for an "Ocean" quilt.  My customer found a picture of a neat quilt in a watercolor style with lots of blues...right up my alley because I love working in blue!  She asked if we could add Manatees, not a problem - I found several fabrics, she chose one and I was set to get started.  Here is my design concept from EQ7:

I started gathering blue fabrics and cutting my pieces - 3 1/2 squares for the 9-patches and 5 inch squares for the 4-patches.  I sorted them into light, medium, and dark and pieced lots of squares.  When I thought I had enough I started laying them out on my design wall:

Uh-oh!  This quilt is bigger than my space!  I pieced the top rows into sections, then took them down so I could work on laying out the bottom:

It was a little tricky figuring out the half triangles because I wanted them to follow my shading...I ended up making some extra blocks to make it all work out!  I was really glad to have my design wall to lay it all out, it really made the process easier.  I just use a piece of cream fleece pinned to the wall, super easy and works great.

Here it is before quilting - I am really happy with the way it came out!  I used a variegated blue for the top because it worked best in the light area, and for the medium and dark used a periwinkle blue.  I quilted an overall swirl design and really enjoyed the process.  A closer look at one of the manatee squares-
And here are a couple of pictures of the quilt when completed:

I think my customer will be delighted with her Ocean Quilt!  I named it Manatee Love for the cute couple in the square.  It measures about 80 inches wide and 92 inches long, 100% cotton batting, thread, and fabric.

Friday, February 07, 2014

One down....Eleven to go!

So far so good on my plan to complete at least 12 UFO projects this year...number one was crossed off on the last day of January!

This quilt is Northern Lights.  It is made from 10 fat quarters - 9 of them were from McKenna Ryan's Glacier Lights line, 1 was a grey tone on tone that went fairly well with the rest and yardage for the borders.  It was made using a free-form Bargello style of piecing.  The original quilt flowed better than this one, but I am pleased with the results, and it is a finished quilt as opposed to a collection of fabric in my drawer now.
I had a good sized piece of the border fabric left, but not enough for the back.  I also had a nice batik that I felt really went well, but it wasn't nearly large enough, either, so I decided to make a pieced backing.  In order to keep it simple I cut strips that were 12 1/2 inches tall and pieced the border fabric and batik along with some other pieces that were left from the top, and some prints that I thought really looked like they went well with the border fabric.  I really like the subtle colors and shading in the finished back!

The finished quilt - the colors really reflect our current weather - very gray and drippy! I quilted the color waves in green variegated and blue variegated threads.  The batting is 100% cotton, and once this is washed it will be so lovely and soft and have wonderful texture!  It measures 61 inches wide and 64 inches tall, and is available for purchase in my Etsy shop - Northern Lights.

This is the project I drew for my February project!  So excited - all it needs is quilting and it will be finished!  I purchased the backing this week, so plan on having this one done early in the month.  I'm thinking of some type of a feather in the red triangles, but what to do on the rest?  It's pretty busy, so the quilting won't make a huge impact, but it would be nice to do something a little more interesting as long as it doesn't take me forever to finish.  I'll gladly take any suggestions you can offer (hint, hint!)  

Thursday, February 06, 2014

Stitches in Bloom at the Oregon Garden

At the end of January I had the interesting experience of sending my Barcelona Nights quilt to be displayed in a quilt show at the Oregon Garden.  It was mostly interesting because the Postal Service managed to lose my quilt for a couple of days and nearly gave us all heart failure!  Thank goodness it was found and made it to the show in time to be displayed (Thanks to a very lovely lady who was good enough to go pick it up at the post office when they left a notice instead of actually delivering it).  Mary, you have my undying gratitude for all your patience and kindness!

Then my husband and I went to the show to check out the quilts on Saturday - it was a good weekend for a road trip.  The show was awesome - so many inspiring quilts.  I took lots of pictures, so will share a few of my favorites here.

This is my sweetie with one that caught his eye.  He would like me to make a quilt with a leopard in a he thought this one was a good one to inspire me...I do like the silhouette of the tree a lot in this.

This one is definitely a favorite of mine!  See how the quilted lines in the sky get closer and closer?  I love the way this adds to the perspective of it.  I have some photographs I would love to make into quilts, so when we went to Powell's bookstore later, I picked up a quilting book on this!  So excited to try some new techniques.
 This one was gorgeous!  I felt kind of awkward posing by a quilt that wasn't mine, though!

The quilting in this one is so beautiful - very inspiring!
And here I am with my quilt - so glad it got there and hung in the show.  It was a good experience, and next time I am going to plaster the box with priority tape - what we think happened is that it got mistaken for a parcel post package and did not receive the priority handling I paid for.  I will also make sure and purchase the proper insurance.  I did not insure this package as it was only traveling 150 miles and I felt sure that it would come to no harm in such a short journey.  Not a good idea.  All's well that ends well, but I will not take such a chance again.

I'd encourage you to enter your quilt in a show, then go visit!  It's lots of fun, and very inspiring!