Friday, July 29, 2011

Christine's First Quilt

Meet my neighbor, Christine.
We've been talking about having her learn to quilt for at least a year. Finally, we found time for some lessons while her daughter Abby was at day camp.

Her first quilt is a doll quilt for Abby's bitty baby.

We started with the blue calico that she inherited, and pulled the pink and green from my stash.

Christine's Aunt Jodi inspired her to start quilting but she lives at the other end of the state, so I'm a much more convenient teacher! I hope she will select another project soon. We need to keep her busy when her daughter starts school!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

WIP Wednesday

Wednesday seems to sneak up on me each week! We did make it to the beach last Wednesday and hope to get there again today.

For the Love of Solids Swap- We got our partner assignments and I went straight to work! I've been wanting to try some English Paper Piecing with different shapes. Here we have hexies, diamonds and petal shapes. I need a hand piecing project for our family vacation (I'll tell you all about it when we get home). They are tiny pieces, so there are lots of them! The drawing is my mock-up of a table runner that finishes about 9" X 22". I'm trying to decide if I should add more colors. Some greens? A contrasting color?

4X5 Modern Quilt Bee- I picked up some fabric last week that will work for a couple of people in our bee. These blocks will be paper-pieced but we are all out of printer paper! I'll need to swing by Staples later today.

Nonna's Garden- I'm bordering the whole thing with a ring of darker green.

Kaleidoscope Quilt Along- This needs to be done(!) by Aug 5th to be eligible for prizes. I pulled some larger pieces of purple from the stash to piece the backing.

Do you really want to see the list of what I didn't work on this week? OK...
Wedding Ring Star- maybe tomorrow?
Red & White Swap- waiting to get my packet from Karen
Polka Dot Swap- blocks are piled up, waiting
Girl Scout Quilt- girls are too busy
Block Lotto (actually pieced the August blocks, but can't show you until next week)
Rockin' Robin- Ain't gonna happen

Then there's all the stuff I haven't touched all summer. I won't list them today.

This Week:
Finishes- 0
New starts- 1
In progress- 20+

Off you go now!

Monday, July 25, 2011

Design Wall Monday and a question

I haven't linked to Design Wall Monday in a long, long time, but I'm really liking what's up there right now. Lots of pink, orange & yellow! My colors of Summer 2011.

The two blocks on top are from Sandy and Megan for the Teeny Weeny Paper Piecing Bee. Aren't they great?

And the block on the bottom, Roads to Rome, is my test block for the 4X5 Modern Quilt Bee.

I have a question for you...
How long are your finger nails?

I ran my finger into the needle yesterday a couple of times before I figured out why. My nails are too long! I use my finger tips to guide fabric, and with my nails sticking out so far, I was catching them under the presser foot.

(My fingers look like claws in this photo!)

I was having a really hard time basting hexies, too. As I was turning corners and finger pressing, it just didn't feel right. OK, time for a trim.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Fabric Friday

Does this look like someone on a fabric diet?
I couldn't help it. I need them! They need me!

Julia and I went to Fairfield, Connecticut yesterday to look at colleges. Naturally, I had to look for a local quilt shop. What we found was Make & Mingle, a hip little shop on a sweet alley in a trendy area of downtown. This fabric-wrapped bike was parked outside!

They don't have much fabric, but what they do have is all modern and fun! I picked up a few that I will use in the 4X5 swap.

Joel Dewberry, Modern Meadow, Herringbone in pond
City Weekend by Liesl Gibson for Oliver & S
Heather Baily, Nicey Jane, Hop Dot in sky
Denyse Schmidt, Hope Valley, Thistle Leaf

I finally broke down and bought a little Central Park from Three Sisters Fabric. I had to have it! I'm thinking about making a Garden Fence quilt with it and some of the solids below.

I knew I could count on Jackie at Canton Village for the solids I needed! I'll do my best to give you the Kona names in order from the top:

Banana, Papaya, Mango, School Bus, Tomato, Celery,
Aqua, Bahama Blue, Lagoon, Deep Blue, Lupine.

The intense heat has finally arrived in Rhode Island. We get a little bit of a break living near the coast. If I do any sewing today, it will be paper-piecing that doesn't require turning on the iron!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

WIP Wednesday

I was making great progress through last Thursday, then took a little break. The sewing machine is humming again, but the really hot weather is on its way to Rhode Island, so I might need to switch to hand piecing at the beach!

New & Finished:
Two quick skirts for me to wear on vacation. I'm going for cool and comfortable! One is a linen blend that I had in the stash and the print is a cheap poly from JoAnn's. I bought 2 t-shirts at JCPenney in obnoxious orange and lime green to go with the print skirt. My family won't be able to lose me even if they try!

Julia has been making friendship bracelets since she saw this tutorial listed on One Pretty Thing. It's the perfect summer couch potato project. Isn't the blue one awesome?

Wedding Ring Star progress has slowed. I have the parts for 15 more complete blocks ready to go. It will take a few hours to complete these, which I would like to do in one shot. Maybe later today. (My mother gave me permission to set it aside so I can prepare for our big vacation.)

Red & White Fabric Swap- Julia and I spent a few hours at Karen's house on Saturday helping her and her daughters sort fabric. I'll show you more later.

4 X 5 Modern Swap- I made a test block in my colors. Now I'm amassing fabrics for the other girls.

Teeny Weeny Paper Piecing Bee- 4 blocks were shipped out and I got my first block in the mail from Sandy. Love it!

On Hold (temporarily):
For the Love of Solids Swap
Girl Scout Quilt
Rockin Robin Quilt Along- Julia's still thinking about it.
Nonna's Garden- This one might come to the beach today!
Brownie Heartstrings & Tony's QOV- Still waiting.

On Hold Indefinitely:
Mod Bento
SwapSugar Wave
Super Bowl Twist
Charming Christmas
3 X 3 Swap
T-Shirt Quilts
Bears in the Farmhouse
Habitat Quilts
Sister's Christmas Quilt Repair

This Week:

Finishes- 1 (2 skirts)
New starts- 1
In progress- 20+

We're off to the beach today, finally! Off you go now to Freshly Pieced for WIP Wednesday.

Friday, July 15, 2011

All Roads Lead to Rome

I took a little break from working on the wedding ring star. Shh. Don't tell the bride!

I wanted to test out a potential block for the 4 X 5 Modern Quilt Bee. The block is called Roads to Rome from Quilter's Cache. Pete saw a map of Rome recently and said, "Wow, all roads really do lead to Rome!"

The original pattern makes a 15" block, but I needed a 12" block, so I redrafted it and added the outside border. I wanted a block that was paper-pieced and had some flying geese. Bingo! I hope the girls in Hive 14 like it, too.

In other news...
Julia and Pete spent the past week at Jazz Camp at URI. There was an impressive concert this afternoon for the kids to show off their new skills. Julia sang beautifully and Pete totally rocks on drums! A great time was had by all!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

WIP Wednesday

I've been sewing as much as possible lately, in between all the usual household/family stuff. I feel like I've made a lot of progress, although there is not an actual finish to report.

Ongoing:Polka Dot Swap- Eighty dotted charm squares arrived in the mail on Saturday, and by Sunday night, I had the blocks done! I think it is a little busy, so I'm thinking about adding some solid sashing. One color, two alternating colors, multiple colors? Straight, on point, twisted? Decisions, decisions.

Wedding Ring Star- Oh, yes, progress is a good thing! This is my priority this week while Julia and Pete are at Jazz Camp (days only). 16 blocks done, many more to go. This is a Judy Niemeyer pattern that I have used before. It's so soft and pretty in Kate Spain's Fandango!

Girl Scout Quilt- Catherine completed her block on Tuesday. Love that bit of red in the center.

Kaleidoscope Quilt Along- I finished the top late Sunday night, in anticipation of spending the week with the wedding quilt. Now I'm thinking about borders, but will probably skip them.

New Projects:
I drew up this red & white kaleidoscope in the layout I wish I had used for the purple one. It will be the second in my series of red & white minis. It will be paper-pieced 2" squares. It's all cut out, ready and waiting.

For the Love of Solids Swap- I jumped in on this one this morning, after telling Julia last night that I had decided to pass. But all the cool kids are doing it! What was I thinking? Don't tell my mother!

On Hold (temporarily):
4 X 5 Modern Quilt Bee- Pulling fabric and thinking about block designs.
Teeny Weeny PP Bee- all done for this month.
Rockin Robin Quilt Along- I thought Julia would do this one, but she hasn't started yet.
Nonna's Garden- I'll get back to this one soon.
Brownie Heartstrings & Tony's QOV- Really, why can't we just get these out of the house?!
Red & White Fabric Swap- We may be sorting with Karen this weekend. Yay!

On Hold Indefinitely:
Mod Bento
SwapSugar Wave
Super Bowl Twist
Charming Christmas
3 X 3 Swap
T-Shirt Quilts
Bears in the Farmhouse
Habitat Quilts
Sister's Christmas Quilt Repair

This Week:

Finishes- 0
New starts- 2
In progress- 22

Off you go, now! Click on the button to see more!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Girl Scout Block

We made a little progress on the Girl Scout Troop quilt today.
Catherine finished her block!

Each girl in the troop designed her own block (or selected one from a book), then chose fabric from my stash and set about constructing it. They have all been surprised by how many details are involved with quiltmaking and how long it takes to construct their first block.

Catherine was intrigued by pressing options- press to one side or open?

The other completed blocks belong to Ashley A, Ashley M and Lily. We played with dying fabric with Kool Aid and some girls are using their fabric in their blocks. The pale yellow triangles in Ashley's block are from the piece she dyed.

Four down, eight to go! I think we have 4 or 5 in progress (cut out and some piecing done) and a couple more that have been designed and fabrics selected. I'd love to have it done for our guild show in October. Wish us luck!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Lots o' Dots

Here's a fun new project that I'm calling Lots o' Dots!

I participated in Wendy's polka dot swap, and my batch of dots arrived on Saturday. Almost immediately, I started sorting, stacking, and playing. I decided to match up two prints and sew them into HSTs. I started sewing on Sunday, and just after I started trimming, the power went out, and didn't come back on until 6 hours later! (We were pathetic, with no sewing machines and computers!)

After trimming, I paired up the pairs to create a 4-patch block. It's a little busy with the blocks all up next to each other, so I might border each block with some solid sashing. Or maybe set them on point with solid setting triangles to make the whole thing much bigger. But that will have to wait a while. I have another priority this week.

Here are some of my favorites...

I'm linking to Sew Modern Monday. Polka dots are modern, right?

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Explosion of Dots!

My Dot Swap fabric arrived from Wendy this weekend. How fun is this assortment?!

I decided to pair up 2 coordinating squares for HSTs. Beyond that, I have no idea how I will lay them out. I might add in some solids to tone it down.

Thanks for coordinating the swap, Wendy!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Krafty Kids

My kids had a very productive week!

Julia made two skirts for herself! The blue one is from this circle skirt tutorial. The pink Martha Negley Dahlia skirt is from the Easy Ruffled Skirt tutorial. She did an awesome job! She learned some stuff and only asked me a couple of questions along the way. She's excited about bringing her sewing machine to college (in 2012).

While Julia was sewing, Pete was tying knots! He has made almost 30 paracord survival bracelets since the supplies arrived on Tuesday from Project Paracord. He used to make them with a cool knot and loop on the ends, but decided to try adding buckles for this batch, using this tutorial. He did a great job!

He's hoping to sell most of them this summer at our local Army/Navy store and at Boy Scout camp. They may even appear in my Etsy shop!

Next week: Jazz Camp! Julia will be singing and Pete will be on drums. Can't wait for the concert at the end of the week!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

WIP Wednesday

It's Wednesday again, already?
Well, here's the list...

Teeny Weeny PP Bee- I made my first 4 blocks for this new-to-me bee. Love it!
July Block Lotto- 4 pairs of Liberated Checkerboard blocks done.
Kaleidoscope Quilt Along- Triangles sewn, keeping up.

New Project:
Rockin' Robin Quilt Along- Julia (my 17-year old daughter) will be working on this one, but I'll be showing you her progress. Fabric is selected and she's thinking about cutting today.


Nonna's Garden- stalled this week. Need to select a border fabric.

Wedding Ring Star- no progress, but I have a plan! Next week, Julia and Pete will both be at Jazz Camp, so I can sew all day. I might even have Julia take the car so I'll be trapped at home.

Girl Scout Quilt- making appointments with the girls to come sew.

Brownie Heartstrings & Tony's QOV- have been washed, but still need labels. Hearstrings will be delivered next Wednesday. We need to ship Tony's quilt to his wife before he gets home from Afghanistan (soon!).

On Hold Indefinitely:
Mod Bento Swap
Sugar Wave
Super Bowl Twist
Charming Christmas
3 X 3 Swap
T-Shirt Quilts
Bears in the Farmhouse
Habitat Quilts
Red & White Fabric Swap
Polka Dot Fabric Swap
Sister's Christmas Quilt Repair

This Week:
Finishes- 3 (ish)
New starts- 1
In progress- 20