Wednesday, April 24, 2013

The Pink Quilt

My girls say this quilt is just too pink, but I like it.  Neither one of them are pink girls.  I didn't overload them on pink when they were young, so I am not sure why this is.

I put the borders on this quilt a few weeks ago, so I wanted to quilt it before I lost interest.  This quilt is for a special young lady that is 2 weeks old.  I am planning on attaching the binding by machine again.  I hope to get a little better each time.

Instead of a simple loopy meander, I wanted to see how well I could make circles.  I was aiming for sort of a bubble pattern and practicing my spacing.

I like how it turned out and I would do this freehand pattern again.  The thread is Aurifil 40wt, and the batting is Thinsulate.  I love this batting so much.  When I run out of my stockpile supply, I will switch to Dream Puff from Quilter's Dream.  It is the closest I have found to the Thinsulate brand

The month is almost over, I all my finishes have been from recent starts.  Hopefully I can get one or two more finishes before the month is over.  One week!

Monday, April 22, 2013

Nautical Baby Quilt

I am doing terrible at making finishes from my UFOs this month.  I still have my Farmer's Wife blocks on my design wall, so I had to put up a second temporary design wall to work on a baby quilt.  I haven't had much time to sew, and most of my time has been used to make baby quilts for upcoming baby showers.  I am really pleased with how this quilt turned out.

I started this quilt at a retreat last weekend.  I had it mostly together, then I didn't like how it looked.  I was making up the pattern as I went.  Last week, I worked on taking it apart.  On Saturday morning, I was determined to make plan "B" work.  I quilted it on Sunday, and bound it completely by machine also.  I used this tutorial as a guide.  I still need some practice, but I am pleased with how it turned out.  I tried several different feet on my machine.  I am still deciding which one I like best.

I had an idea for a much more elaborate quilting plan, but I opted for a simple (and quick) plan instead.  I didn't want the quilting too dense.

 The weather was so nice this afternoon that I couldn't resist taking the quilt out among the spring flowers for a few photos.

Just for the record, since I have been mostly labeled the UN-finisher.  I started and finished this quilt complete with binding in one weekend.  This is a record - Perhaps it should go in the history books.

Stop over to Patchwork Times to see what others are working on this week.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Weekend Retreat

I didn't get much sewing time at the retreat, but I enjoyed the time I had.  Family obligations kept me on the run.  I am sure someday I will miss the craziness of having a family involved in so many things.

The things I worked on had nothing to do with UFOs or goals.  Somehow those things slipped my mind.  I managed to put together a baby quilt for a shower that is coming up soon.

 I managed to put a second baby quilt together for another shower, but I didn't like it so I bonded with the seam ripper today.  Back to square one I go.

Judy made this great X-block runner.  I like how she placed the leftovers in the border.  And Ellen was demonstrating her squish and square technique.  Let's just say it took a lot of rulers, but it was successful.  This quilt will be displayed at Art Prize in Grand Rapids this year.

This is my little hillbilly girl.  She was in the production of the Hankerin' Hillbillies this weekend.    I am so proud of how she played the role of Betty with her hillbilly accent.  She did part of the choreography for the production.  She really enjoyed this role and had fun with it.

Her drama teacher couldn't believe she had patches that matched her shirt.  Wonder how they matched the shirt?

This will be our last library retreat until fall.  I will miss the designated time to work on my projects.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Focus... or lack of I should say

I have a long list of things that need to be done, or things I should be doing, but I am grazing from one project to the next.  My design wall looks like a windstorm attacked it.

I have a couple of swoon block that I am trying to salvage, a lot of Farmer's Wife blocks, and the start of a nautical baby quilt hanging there.

 I made the swoon block on the right, and it turned out PINK- both my girls said it was really ugly.  I thought if I made another block that wasn't so PINK, I might be able to help it.  I think it made it worse.  I plan to do 2 more blocks.  I have one block cut out and I am trying to decided on the color of the last block.  I am entertaining the idea of that yellow- in hopes of toning down the pick background.  Somehow I thought the pink I chose for a background was pale.  I guess I shouldn't choose colors so late at night.  I actually thought about white when I started the block, but it just didn't seem right.
These pendants are the start of a baby quilt.  I don't have any idea or pattern.  Can you believe I did not have a polka dot in my stash to match these nautical colors.  I have 2 more baby quilt cut out and kitted for the next retreat, but I haven't started sewing them yet.

I have 4 nieces expecting this year.  This is only the beginning of the baby quilts.

On this weeks agenda - cut the background pieces for this quilt.  I was going to use one fabric for the background.  I really tried to convince myself!  In the back of my mind, I remembered that my whites container was stuffed.  I plan to iron these scraps that are at least 2 1/2" wide and cut them the lengths needed for the pattern.

I realize none of these items are on my April goals list.  I hope to get to my goal list before the end of the month, but until then, I am just going to play with scraps and have some fun.  After all, that is the whole point of this hobby.

I received a new grab bag from This-n-that Fabrics today.  I think they have the best deal on scrap bags.  Most of the pieces are at least a fat eighth.  This represents what I received in my 3# bag.  It is fun to add selections to my stash that I never would have picked.  Part of the entertainment is just sorting the bag.

Stop over to Judy's to see what others are working on this week.

Monday, April 1, 2013

March Recap & April Goals

My March goals were as follows:

  1. Quilt the Monkey Tumbler Quilt (I pieced the backing last month) and bind - Quilted, but not bound yet...finished by my terms
  2. Make the backing and quilt the pink/fuchsia quilt ( I put the blocks together in January) and bind- backing made, but I didn't get it quilted yet...I took this off the list for now because I don't know how I want to quilt it.
  3. Put borders on the town square quilt and piece the backing- I didn't have the right fabric for this.  Since the kids made be give up buying fabric for lent, I had to put this one off until April.
  4. Start sewing the blocks together on my second Carolina Crossroads quilt- never got to this one.

Bonus projects: (it is good to dream right?)
  1. Quilt my Red/Black/Grey Twister - mostly quilted, just need to quilt the last border
  2. Quilt the Grey/Yellow plus quilt.- didn't even look at this one.

Out of the six things on the list, I didn't complete one.  I sort of jumped around from various projects.  I am not discouraged, and I will try to do better this month.  April is going to be a busy month for me, so I intend to make my goals a little easier.

April Goals (from the UFO list):
  1. Finish Quilting my twister quilt
  2. Quilt my twister wall hanging (I managed to get the borders on last month)
  3. Put borders on the second Monkey quilt
  4. Put the borders on the town square quilt
  5. Quilt and bind the pink/yellow floral quilt.
April New projects:
  1. Quilt the baby quilt I pieced last night
  2. quilt my green/yellow scrappy swoon

I will say that when I surf the blogs, there are some real over-achievers.  I have several years of UFOs (almost a decade), and it will take me several years to finish them up.  I am working hard to finish all the new things I start this year so they don't end up on the year end list too.

Design Floor

My design wall is still filled with the Farmer's Wife, so I am resorting to the floor.  It was hard to go back to work today after having a week off.  I enjoyed my week cleaning my studio and doing a little quilting.

Yesterday while finishing up a few things, I came across some pink pieces that I had cut long ago.  I think I have moved them several times.  I decided I was done moving them and I was going to come up with a plan (because I don't know know what my old plan was)  I had 25 sets.  After a quick calculation, I decided I needed 5 more to come up with enough for a baby quilt I needed to make.  I dug into my scraps and found the perfect pieces.

  It took me longer to pick the border fabric than it did to sew the blocks and arrange them.  I love the variety of pinks.

I have been wanting to practice sewing the binding on by machine, and I think this quilt will be perfect.  I think for a baby quilt, a machine sewn binding will work well.  I am constantly repairing the bindings on my kids quilts. It has nothing to do with the thread, but tug-of-war is hard on the quilt.  

I also hope to finish quilting my twister this week.  I have everything done but the outer border.  The quilting idea came from this quilt.  I can see an improvement in my feathers from the beginning to the end.  This is a large quilt!  I was beginning to think I would never get to the end.  I think it measures around 94 X 100.  

It is hard to believe it is April already!  I will post later on how I did with my UFOs this month.  It wasn't as good as I hoped, but I did make some progress.

Stop over to Judy's to see what others are working on this week.